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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 7/29/17 edition

July 29, 2017

Can we all agree, John McCain saved the Republican party from itself, when he cast the deciding vote against the so called ‘skinny repeal’ of the Affordable Care Act?

Can we all agree, Senator McCain clearly never forgave the President for the slights he was forced to endure during the 2016 campaign and seemed to relish his role?

Can we all agree it was McCain who got the pivotal vote, but it was Senators Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski who took most of the heat?

Senators McCain, Collins and Murkowski: This week's heroes

Senators McCain, Collins and Murkowski: This week’s healthcare heroes.

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump erred badly when he tried to bully Senator  Murkowski into supporting the measure?

Can we all agree, GOP lawmakers who turned to sexist rhetoric in an attempt to pressure the female senators were an embarrassment?

Can we all agree, someone in the GOP has to  grow up and make a concerted effort to ensure the existing health insurance system will continue to work?

Can we all agree, it was heartening to some degree to see the GOP stand up to the President this week by defending the attorney general, passing tougher Russian sanctions and rejecting calls to ban transgender Americans in the military ?

Can we all agree the White House didn’t have much choice but to sign the sanctions bill?

Can we all agree, Russia’s retaliation for the increased sanctions has been relatively mild so far?

Can we all agree, Reince Priebus, has been a dead man walking since he took the job as White House chief of staff?

Can we all agree, when the nation’s chief executive jokingly condones police violence of any type, he displays a profound disregard for civil rights and insults the majority of the nation’s law enforcement officers who observe professional standards?

Can we all agree, Anthony Scaramucci has no business running a communications team if he can’t even communicate without being vulgar?

Can we all agree, the White House announced policies on gay rights, is simply out of touch with the attitudes of most Americans?

Can we all agree, House passage of a budget bill that has no chance of winning Senate approval shows that Speaker Paul Ryan has no ability to deal with conservative ideologues in his caucus?

Can we all agree, North Korea’s test of a missile that could reach Denver, Colorado should make it clear that they are the number one threat to our country?

Can we all agree, the removal of the Pakistani Prime Minister by that nation’s highest court would normally leave us shaking our collective heads in disbelief, but these days we just wonder if the US is next?

Can we all agree, the Boy Scouts really had no control over what the President would say at their annual event, but at least they realized an apology was necessary?

Can we all agree, the Vice President’s voter fraud commission has no idea how to conduct a legitimate study of the alleged problem?

Can we all agree, the fact that Secretary of State Rex Tlllerson was forced to deny rumors that he wanted to quit, suggests he may be on his way out?

Can we all agree, now that both Britain and France have passed laws banning vehicles with internal combustion engines, we may have reached a tipping point?DF31rp1XkAA8Ala.jpg-large

Can we all agree, normally when a TV commentator has a private dinner at the White House, it would damage his credibility, but with Sean Hannity, no one even blinked an eye?

Can we all agree, allowing your employer to place a chip in your body for identification purposes sends chills down the spine of many people?

Can we all agree, translating Foxconn’s employment practices in China to the US could be difficult?

Can we all agree, the results of a study of deceased football player’s brains should make parents think twice before allowing their children to play football?

Can we all agree, it’s hard to believe that the only person the Department of Justice could find to run their criminal division was someone with ties to a Russian bank?

Can we all agree, the Democrats new image message was less than inspiring?

Can we all agree, the Polish President’s veto of legislation taking over that nation’s courts, avoided a European crises?

Can we all agree, Jared Kushner’s private testimony before a Senate panel, suggests he’s either stupid or involved in issues way over his head?

Can we all agree, another silver lining to California’s wet winter is a new gold rush?

Can we all agree, the new TSA rules for screening electronics are going to make security lines even longer?

Can we all agree, Kansas Governor Sam Brownback, who is taking a job as a religious ambassador, is a poster child for the dangers of refusing to compromise in politics?

and finally:

RIP:

June Foray–the voice of our youth from “Rocky and Bullwinkle” to “Dudley Do-Right,” “Bugs Bunny” and “The Flintstones.”

and

Now you can ask a psychologist to find out if the President really is crazy.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 7/8/17 edition

July 8, 2017

Can we all agree, as long as Mr. Trump and Mr. Putin release their claims of what they discussed through biased mouthpieces we should be skeptical of anything they say?

Can we all agree it’s hard to believe Mr. Trump pressed Mr. Putin very hard on election tampering, one day after claiming he still wasn’t sure the Russians hacked our election system?

A friend recently published her photos of the Milky Way. (Photo by Annie Lu)

A friend recently published her photos of the Milky Way. (Photo by Annie Lu)

Can we all agree, there is no denying Mr. Trump’s policies are leaving the US on the sidelines of global trade and  isolated on most major issues?

Can we all agree, the robust jobs report may have very little to do with Trump’s economic policies, since no one is sure what they are ?

Can we all agree the slowdown in auto sales, and the resulting loss of jobs, may be  tough for the White House to explain?

Can we all agree, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell seems ready to admit defeat on repealing the Affordable Care Act, although the White House seems to be preparing one last push?

Can we all agree, any cease fire is good news, but we’ve been down this road many times in Syria?

Can we all agree, the GOP seems to having problems dealing with social media? First their attack on Hillary Clinton backfires and then the Indiana GOP asks for Obamacare horror stories and is flooded with positive comments.

Can we all agree, the departure of the head of the federal ethics office is a sad day for all of us, since  it will allow the White House to appoint someone who ignores their nonexistent ethics?

Can we all agree, the two year delay in approving an Illinois budget should be a warning to the GOP – if they ever get around to voting on an increase to the federal debt ceiling?

Can we all agree, the revelations about the ‘successful’ interception of a test missile aimed at California, will not make  West Coast residents sleep any easier

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s latest bizarre tweet has to worry even his most ardent supporters?

Can we all agree, it’s hard to believe, he could top his retweet of a doctored video showing him wrestling with a CNN logo?

Can we all agree, if the GOP has lost a solid red state. such as Kansas, they really should rethink their attempts to repeal Obamacare?

Can we all agree, California Governor Jerry Brown really seems to like his new role as ‘Democratic President of the United States.’

Can we all agree, the move to all electric cars may happen faster than anyone expected as France and Volvo jumped on the Tesla technology bandwagon?

Can we all agree, The Presidential voting commission needs to be dissolved  now that 44 states have turned down their request for voter data?

Can we all agree, US oil producers don’t seem to understand that the more they sell the lower the price will be and the sooner the oil boom will turn into a bust?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s portrayal, in Poland, of the war against ISIS, as a battle against all Muslims, is counter-productive and needlessly raises the stature of that terrorist organization?

Can we all agree, Louisiana Congressman Clay Higgins’ use of a Nazi gas chamber as a backdrop for a campaign ad, has left everyone speechless?

Can we all agree, United Airlines just doesn’t seem to understand that customer service and common sense, need to come before profits?

Can we all agree, no one seems to believe the White House story line that Obamacare is a failure?

Can we all agree, it does not appear that the July Fourth break was particularly pleasant for lawmakers supporting repeal of The Affordable Care Act?

Can we all agree, the recent headline noting that ‘self restraint’ is the only thing standing in the way of war with North Korea should make everyone from Barrow, Alaska, to San Diego, California very nervous?

Can we all agree, that, given the number of executives who have now been fired for sexual harassment, the corporate culture at Fox News must have been terrible for any woman who tried to make a career there?

Can we all agree, NJ Governor Chris Christie, photographed sunbathing this week on a beach closed by a budget impasse gives new meaning to the word chutzpah?

Can we all agree, it appears once again, that the only thing standing in the way of a complete climate meltdown in the US, may be the judicial system?

Can we all agree, it looks like the courts may have to be the last line of defense against Betsy Devoss and her Department of Education also?

and finally:

We should all pause to remember Ms Sheila Michaels.

and

A former member of Congress who now needs the ACA to survive.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 4/15/17 edition

April 15, 2017

Can we all agree today’s tax march will be a success even if it only continues the activism spawned by opposition to Mr. Trump? Be ready for stories about violence in Berkeley, driven by outsiders looking to capitalize on the city’s reputation.

Can we all agree we’ve come a long way when China is playing the role of the grownup as the US and North Korea argue over who has a bigger missile?

Can we all agree The President’s policy flip-flops this week just show how uninformed he is on a wide range of economic topics? And no, he should not get credit because he just realized governing “is not easy.”

A back yard hawk looks for finches and voles in a San Francisco neighborhood (Photo by Tom Kuhn)

A back yard hawk looks for finches and voles in a San Francisco neighborhood (Photo by Tom Kuhn)

Can we all agree the changes are more a reflection of who has his ear this week: Steve Bannon, who seems to be on his way out or Gary Cohn a long-time registered Democrat?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump should not be congratulated for becoming more rational while his Attorney General rips up agreements on police reform, ramps up the racist war on drugs, and speeds up deportations?

Can we all agree refusing to release the logs of White House visitors just reinforces the notion that the administration has something to hide?

Can we all agree there is no way Arkansas should be allowed to speed up executions, just because the drugs they use might pass their expiration date?

Can we all agree, it looks like the administration is heading for another defeat in their battle to bar ‘sanctuary cities’ from receiving federal funds?

Can we all agree the next court battle will be over permits for Mr. Trump’s border wall?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump seems like a little kid playing with toys as he orders bombs dropped all over the world?

Can we all agree, speaking of the Commander in chief, that he has given new meaning to the famous Marie Antoinette phrase, “let them eat cake.”

Can we all agree the death toll is probably not the best way to judge the effectiveness of the MOAB –  ‘mother of all bombs’ –  dropped on Afghanistan?

Can we all agree, EPA director Scott Pruitt takes a bit too much pleasure in reversing Obama-era rules designed to prevent industry from polluting the nation’s lakes and rivers? It’s hard to believe the far right feels he’s not moving aggressively enough.

Can we all agree Education Secretary Betsy DeVoss’s moves to undo student loan regulations will last until the next scandal involving schools, such as Trump University, taking advantage of students?

Can we all agree Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau deserves kudos for fulfilling a campaign promise to push for the legalization of marijuana for recreational uses?

Can we all agree private school administrators must have had their heads in the sand over the last 7 years as they watched the clergy sex abuse scandal come to light while declining to do anything about the same sort of activity at their own schools?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s plan to blackmail Democrats into supporting his new healthcare plan seems to have fizzled before it got started as GOP House member are already opposing it?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump seems to think signing controversial bills in private, like the one he approved this week to defund Planned Parenthood, means no one will know what he has done?

Can we all agree the Kentucky man dragged off a United Airlines flight this week will have every person who has ever flown, in his corner when he files suit against the airline? If you want to get bumped here’s how to do it.

Can we all agree the United CEO deserves to lose his job for listening to lawyers who obviously crafted his first response to the crises?

Can we all agree, even when the chief executive came to his senses he still had a tough time apologizing?

Can we all agree the Wells Fargo board of directors still seems pretty tone deaf as it attempts to recoup $75 million from executive implicated in the bank’s bogus credit card scheme, but still thinks it bears no responsibility?

Can we all agree Turkish Prime minister Recep Tayyip has found a not-so-unique way to get himself voted dictator – lie to your citizens?

Can we all agree Brazilian voters have to be wondering if anyone they put in office  is honest, as over 100 legislators and cabinet ministers were named in a criminal investigation?

Can we all agree, it was only a matter of time before Mr. Trump’s travel ban began to hurt the tourism industry?

Can we ll agree the administration’s plan to speed up their immigration enforcement will not help the situation?

Can we all agree South African President Jacob Zuma has trashed the memory of the nation’s biggest hero, Nelson Mandela?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s war mongering has certainly taken the spotlight away from the probe into his campaign’s ties to Russia? But it won’t end the investigation thanks to Paul Manafort’s activity.

Can we all agree it would be nice to have a week when Mr. Trump did not embarrass himself during a TV interview, sadly it wasn’t this past week?

Can we all agree the Republicans will say publicly that they are not worried about the 2018 election, but contests in Kansas and Georgia suggest they have some serious problems? And this doesn’t include the voter ID laws that Federal Courts say are unconstitutional.

Can we all agree Sean Spicer should not be anyone’s press secretary? His daily lies and gaffe’s are getting tiresome?

Can we all agree the only good news from the federal government this week might have been the FCC decision not to allow the use of cell phones on airplanes?

and finally:

With over 1 million people watching, April the giraffe  finally gave birth.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 4/1/17 edition

April 1, 2017

Can we all agree, this Holocaust survivor in Sacramento, had the perfect retort to the head of the immigration service who was trying to defend the new immigration policies?

Can we all agree it’s remarkable, that we have an Attorney General who doesn’t seem to know federal law very well?

Can we all agree Mississippi State showed why we love college sports, when they upset The University of Connecticut, ending the team’s 111-game winning streak?

First rose of the season in my garden: Sombreuil

First rose of the season in my garden: Sombreuil

Can we all agree, there is no law against being rich, but the wealth, and lack of ethics in our new leadership team, puts to rest the notion that Donald Trump is draining any swamps in Washington?

Can we all agree the White House Press Secretary is desperately trying to divert attention from the Russian scandal that has now fully engulfed the White House?

Can we all agree, despite Senate promises of a full investigation of the White House ties to Russia, most Americans want a truly independent probe?

Can we all agree the startling rise in opioid deaths is a national health crises that needs to be addressed, before it becomes a ‘fact of life’ like the murder rate from guns?

Can we all agree it’s pretty clear the wrong person is running the Food and Drug Administration, when he has to recuse himself from decisions involving over 20 health care firms, because he has a conflict of interest?

Can we all agree Elon Musk’s reusable rocket technology is pretty remarkable?

Can we all agree, if news reports are to be believed, Rex Tillerson, our Secretary of State, seems lost, and that’s just what Mr. Trump wants?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s trade policy seems to change direction like the wind? On the eve of the Chinese President’s visit to Mar A Lago, he’s threatening a trade war, while he backs off his campaign promise to rip up  NAFTA?

Can we all agree the Democrats are committed to making the appointment of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court difficult, as retribution for Mitch McConnell’s handling of the Merrick Garland nomination?

Can we all agree Venezuela has descended into chaos? Too bad the refugees trying to escape will not be welcomed here.

Can we all agree the Russians protesting the dictatorship of Vladimir Putin have no chance of forcing any changes?

Can we all agree it’s tough to take the continuing California drought warnings too seriously with the Sierra snowpack at 167% of normal?

Can we all agree, no Bay Area resident would disagree with polls showing many millennials want to leave because of high costs and traffic congestion?

Can we all agree there is no reason why Michael Flynn should be given immunity from prosecution, especially since no one expects he would tell the truth anyway?

Can we all agree, it’s good to see the suit against Trump University might allow defrauded students to get back almost 90% of what they paid, but we were kind of rooting for the plaintiff who wanted more, including an apology from Mr. Trump?

Can we all agree the North Carolina Legislature seems to have fooled everyone into thinking they actually changed their bathroom law?

Can we all agree  California Rep. Devin Nunes was a willing dupe in the White House’s plan to plant evidence supporting Mr. Trump’s wiretapping claims?

Can we all agree Chelsea Clinton needs to get used to people who doubt her claims that she will not run for office, especially when she continues to make public political statements?

Can we all agree public opinion on the change in internet privacy restrictions is really a generational divide with Baby Boomers worried about their data and younger people assuming everything they do on line is public anyway?

Can we all agree, as the battle over the Affordable Care Act continues Health Secretary Thomas Price will slowly chip away at coverage, while more GOP governors seem to have realized the ACA might help residents in their states?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s attempts to threaten the Freedom Caucus for their failure to support health care reform, just shows his political inexperience? Even the Democrats are laughing.

Can we all agree that the prison sentences handed out to aides of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie send a clear message to politicians everywhere (including the White House) about what the public finds acceptable?

Can we all agree, it makes no difference whether Ivanka Trump is paid or not, she should not be advising the President and running her company at the same time?

Can we all agree, it’s pretty funny seeing Mr. Trump using Bill Clinton’s defense trying to avoid a sexual assault lawsuit while he’s President?

Can we all agree, the thought of Mr. Trump throwing out the first pitch on Opening Day was too precious? Almost as fanciful as the thought of a second Trump hotel in Washington.

Can we all agree the women’s USA Hockey team struck a blow for equality this week?

Can we all agree, Maxine Waters and April Ryan did much the same in their own ways?

Can we all agree it doesn’t look like England’s exit from the EU will be as smooth as Theresa May had hoped?

Can we all agree Hong Kong has now officially lost it’s battle to remain a democracy?

Can we all agree that Mr. Trump’s moves to undo Mr. Obama’s clean air plan will do nothing to bring back coal jobs, do nothing to make America great again, give the rest of the world an excuse to follow suit and do nothing but allow our climate to change permanently?

and finally:

If you are really depressed about Alec Baldwin’s decision to cut back on his appearances on SNL, take a look at this compilation of the past year’s political sketches.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree ™ – 3/18/17 edition

March 18, 2017

Can we all agree Donald Trump’s budget plan may not pass, but he has succeeded in reframing the debate for the GOP, so that only minor improvements can win over opponents?

Can we all agree the new budget director has already given Democrats plenty of ammunition for the mid-term elections?

Can we all agree the Fed’s decision to raise interest rates is good news, since it means the economy is growing?

Can we all agree Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has given North Korea exactly what they wanted; the threat of an imminent attack by the US?

Can we all agree the Democrats are leaving no stone unturned to create opposition to Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch?

Can we all agree, regardless of who leaked 2 pages Mr. Trump’s 2005 tax return, it was a blatant attempt to draw public attention for the plethora of controversies the White House is facing?

Can we all agree, if Hillary Clinton is really ‘coming out of the woods,’ she will be the only Democrat who can steal the spotlight away from Mr. Trump?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s meeting with German President Angela Merkel will not be the last awkward meeting he has with another world leader?

New Monopoly game pieces include T-Rex, a duck and a penguin

New Monopoly game pieces include T-Rex, a duck and a penguin

Can we all agree California farmers have proven unequivocally that Americans will not replace foreign workers to harvest crops?

Can we all agree Baby Boomers took another kick in the stomach this week as Hasbro replaced the boot, the wheelbarrow and the thimble as playing pieces in Monopoly?

Can we all agree Rep. Paul Ryan can make all the changes he wants to Trumpcare, but it still has little chance of passing the Senate, even by a simple majority if 24 million people will lose their insurance?

Can we all agree it won’t take Mr. Trump long to cite today’s attack in Paris as justification for more security measures?

Can we all agree, news that Syria had targeted Israel jets coming back from a bombing run was troubling on a  number of levels?

Can we all agree every time we increase the number of troops being sent to Syria, we just create more targets for ISIS?

Can we all agree, given the way things seem too be run in the White House, it’s easy to believe the Milpitas, CA man who jumped the fence, really was a friend of the President, as he claimed?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s Muslim travel ban will probably be decided by the Supreme Court – which is why he is so intent in having his nominee confirmed before the end of this term?

Can we all agree  Mr. Obama and now England are due apologies over the false claims that they colluded to tap Mr. Trump’s ‘wires‘?

Can we all agree Scotland deserves to get a new independence vote in light of England’s decision to leave the European Union?

Can we all agree the slow deterioration in EU-Turkish relations will continue as long as Recep Tayyip Erdogan leads Turkey?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s embrace of Andrew Jackson seems both logical and apalling?

Can we all agree, given the new Russian revelations, it’s pretty clear why Michael Flynn was ousted from his national security post? Someone knew what additional revelations were coming.

Can we all agree the world breathed a sigh of relief with the defeat of the Dutch anti-immigration candidate?

Can we all agree the sooner the White House starts cooperating with Congressional probes of Russian involvement in the campaign, the sooner the GOP will end the investigations?

Can we all agree charging two Russians with hacking millions of Yahoo accounts, just added to the pressure to get to the bottom of exactly what the Russian government is doing?

Can we all agree it’s doubtful  federal immigration officials will pay any attention to the request by the California Chief Justice, who asked them to stay away from state courthouses? After all, to paraphrase Willie Sutton, ‘that’s where the criminals are.’

Can we all agree, Olympic ideals took another hit this week when the head of USA Gymnastics was forced to resign ?

Can we all agree the women’s Olympic hockey team members had little choice but to threaten a strike to get the recognition and support they deserve?

Can we all agree it’s clear that Press Secretary Sean Spicer is performing for an audience of one, each time he addresses the press?

Can we all agree, speaking of performing, it’s embarrassing that  Republicxans have such a tough time celebrating St. Patrick’s Day?

Can we all agree it may be a small step, but banning plastic straws might be a good symbolic step to fight ocean pollution? Especially since the administration seems intent on rolling back air pollution rules.

Can we all agree since the administration seems unconcerned about how global warming, caused by air pollution, is affecting humans, it’s doubtful they will care about the death of large portions of the Great Barrier Reef?

Can we all agree anyone who really thought Roundup was safe for the environment, just isn’t following the money in medical research?

Can we all agree Koch Industries has done masterful job in  making sure electric cars never eat into their profits on a national basis?

Can we all agree it’s great to see that the world’s oldest golf course finally agreed to let women join? Who would have thought Augusta National would beat them to the punch by 5 years?

Can we all agree telling your voters to ‘shut up’ may not be the best way to win re-election?

Can we all agree there were a number of head-slapping comments by politicians this week? And the list doesn’t even include Kellyanne Conway’s latest whopper.

Can we all agree, if Navy officials thought they could get away with a multi-billion dollar bribery scheme there are probably many more scandals we don’t know about?

Can we all agree it’s comforting to know white supremacist Richard Spencer will no longer be able to say he runs a tax-exempt non-profit organization?

Can we all agree, when the family of the president’s son-in-law can sign a deal with the Chinese it should raise some red flags?

Can we all agree we should get rid of the bi-annual clock changing ceremony and leave the country of Daylight Savings Time permanently?

and finally:

If you really want to know why people fear nuclear power. check out the state of the cleanup from the Fukushima nuclear meltdown six years ago.

Can’t wait for this week’s Saturday Night Live show?

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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 3/11/17 edition

March 11, 2017

Can we all agree Speaker Paul Ryan’s replacement for the Affordable Care Act  is DOA unless he agrees to some changes?

Can we all agree the future of health care in the United States has more to do with politics and tax cuts for the wealthy, than with actually getting people medical care?

Can we all agree, that despite attempts to malign the credibility of the Congressional Budget Office, their estimate of the cost of the new health care program may seal its fate?

Can we all agree most uninsured Americans wish their health care was as easy to purchase as an iPhone?

Wall Street's newest statue: The Fearless Girl

Wall Street’s newest statue: The Fearless Girl

Can we all agree the ‘Fearless Girl’ statue on Wall Street should become permanent?

Can we all agree job growth numbers suddenly don’t look so phony  when you’re in the White House?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump is not going to stop making unsupported accusations about Mr. Obama or anyone else, until he is forced to pay a price, like an impeachment investigation?

Can we all agree Donald Trump deserves criticism for taking credit for  economic improvements that really happened during the Obama administration?

Can we all agree, Marines would not have been able to post nude photos of female comrades without the tacit approval of their commanding officers?

Can we all agree the major news of the week might be the GOP’s proposed restrictions on class action lawsuits?

Can we all agree no-one is really surprised that the National Football League forces its players to abuse drugs?

Can we all agree many Republicans show how little they understand the insurance business, when they question why men should pay for pre-natal coverage?

Can we all agree the North Koreans are trying to take advantage of Mr. Trump and the impeachment of the South Korean President?

Can we all agree the Wikileaks revelations about CIA espionage really have no impact on most Americans? No, they are not watching you through your TV: Others might be, but not the CIA.

Can we all agree the new head of the EPA may not believe in climate change but a lawsuit filed by 1o-year-olds may force him to change his attitude?

Can we all agree, the thought of  additional US troops on the ground in Syria is exactly what the American public does not want?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s new immigration policy still looks like a ban on Muslims?

Can we all agree separating families when they cross the US border is just mean spirited?

Can we all agree trading the Coast Guard and TSA for a wall on the Mexican border does not make the country safer?

Can we all agree the more Attorney General Jeff Sessions tries too explain away his lies to Congress, the worse he looks?

Can we all agree Ben Carson has no business running a federal department that many minorities count on? Maybe his budget deserves to be cut 14%.

Can we all agree the satirical columns of Andy Borowitz would not be mistaken for real news, if members of the administration did not make such outrageous comments?

Can we all agree the thought of a campaign official being paid by a foreign government would be outrageous for any politician except Donald Trump?

Can we all agree, speaking of fake news, could the GOP media mouthpieces get any more outrageous in their attempts to explain away the Russian connection to the Trump campaign?

Can we all agree the Trump administration’s reaction to the plea by all 100 senators for action on the threats made to Jewish Centers across the country, was deafening in its silence?

Can we all agree it is no longer entertaining to laugh at White House aides trying to defend  Mr. Trump’s tweets to TV talk show hosts, or his weekend temper tantrums?

Can we all agree , whether its the Chinese government or the US candy industry, Mr. Trump’s conflicts of interest will keep piling up until someone files a lawsuit and the courts force some action?

And finally this week’s good reads:

The tragic story of two 97-year-old sisters who lost their lives on a cold night in New England.

Plus:

The California drought is over, but anyone who has visited our state and taken the breathtaking drive along Route 1 through Big Sur, should pause to see what the winter storms have done to that area.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree ™- 3/4/17 edition

March 4, 2017

Can we all agree even the biggest supporters of Donald Trump are starting to get a bit nervous about the number of contacts between Trump associates and Russia?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s vacation from Twitter, and his attempts to ‘act Presidential,’ only lasted 3 days? He’s obsessed with Mr. Obama and Mr. Schwarznegger.

Can we all agree the best story of the week is the Mountain View, CA school which made a killing when Snapchat went public? Only in Silicon Valley.

Can we all agree our new Interior Secretary knows how to make an entrance?

Can we all agree universities need to figure out a way to insure free speech, even for people with controversial views?

Can we all agree Uber has created a real public relations nightmare for itself, which seems to get worse by the day, and  is really a reflection of its CEO?

Can we all agree the advertising phrase ‘He got it at Jared’s’ took on a whole new meaning this week, as the company and it’s sister firm, Kay Jewelers, were accused of encouraging sexual harrassment?

Can we all agree, Oprah Winfrey might make a good president, but I doubt she has the stomach, or ego, for the campaign? Besides would the voters really elect a TV personality…again?

Can we all agree it’s pretty amazing that Vice President Mike Pence thought he could criticize Hillary Clinton for using a private email server, and not think his use of a private server would be discovered?

Can we all agree making Flint Michigan residents pay for water they still cannot drink without a filter is just absurd? Yossarian would be proud.

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s steps to  completely gut the EPA and virtually every other agency involved in climate science, have nothing to do with satisfying his base, unless you mean industry donors?

Can we all agree the Russian ambassador must have been the busiest man in Washington, given all the meetings and phone calls, he’s  had with the Trump campaign?

Can we all agree the assistant US attorney who will oversee the probe into the Russian contacts, provides some hope that the inquiry might actually be balanced?

Can we all agree the probe shouldn’t be too difficult with both the Trump and Obama administrations trying to help, sort of?

Can we all agree Attorney General Jeff Sessions didn’t have much choice but to recuse himself? It was that or quit after three weeks on the job.

Can we all agree, it won’t be long before someone on trial for perjury cites the AG’s actions as justification for lying?

Can we all agree it’s pretty amazing that California public officials would think that their emails would not be public just because they did not use a government server?

Can we all agree it’s hard to believe that a string of bomb threats against Jewish community centers across the country apparently had more to do with a lover’s quarrel than anti-semitism? You can’t make this up.

Can we all agree the new office of immigrant crime has a decidedly Orwellian ring to it? Kind of like Homeland Security.

Can we all agree Kellyanne Conway finds a way to stay in the news even when she’s barred from TV?

Can we all agree the real message of that Oval Office meeting seems to have gotten lost?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s speech to Congress marked a temporary change in tone but not in policy?

Can we all agree the ‘bad hombre’  immigrants who were taken into custody this week, probably haven’t noticed any policy changes?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s real priorities can be seen in his budget?

Can we all agree his use of a dead Navy Seal, which he declined to accept responsibility for, was simply a cynical ploy? I didn’t see William Owens’s dad watching from the gallery, wonder why?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump can complain all he wants about delays in approving his cabinet nominees, but the process might have gone more smoothly if two had not voluntarily withdrawn?

Can we all agree that when both of the Obama’s books are published they will be instant best sellers?

Can we all agree, it’s a good bet that many golfers don’t even know some of the rules that are being changed?

Can we all agree the new baseball rule changes will do little to speed up the game? How many intentional walks are there in a game, really.

Can we all agree, the North Korean’s seem to have taken a page from the Trump playbook, by proposing alternate facts to explain the death of their leader’s half brother?

Can we all agree it seems likely there might be environmental causes for the rise of colorectal cancer among young people?

Can we all agree the medical community might need to rethink their approach, if they believe new drugs are the way to kill bacteria who have developed resistance to existing drugs?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump has to be the last person to figure out that reforming health care is complicated?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump officially found a way to drain the swamp although it probably wan’t what most of his supporters had in mind?

Can we all agree those of you who are worried about the health of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, might want to try her daily workout?

Can we all agree there will probably be a pretty long list of folks who want to book a ride on the Space X flight around the moon?

Can we all agree the ending to this year’s Oscar broadcast probably brought more viewers to both movies? Too bad the mixup overshadowed Viola Davis’s speech.

Can we all agree the Democrats can do whatever they want to reform their party, but it won’t make any difference if they don’t have a good candidate in 2016?

and finally:

The tragic story of an Ebola fighter who died because medical staffers were afraid to treat her when she suffered complications from child birth.

and RIP Bill Paxton.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree – 2/18/17 edition

February 18, 2017

Can we all agree, of all the President’s cabinet members approved approved so far, Mike Pruitt, at the EPA, has the potential to do the most damage to future generations?

Can we all agree many senators may regret their vote after Mr.  Pruitt’s emails as Oklahoma AG are made public?

Can we all agree if Mr. Trump continues his war on the media he will undermine his own credibility? If he has any left.

Can we all agree, speaking of credibility, picking a political ally to ‘review’  intelligence gathering operations will do nothing to stop the leaks that continue to plague the administration?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s continued insistence on an alternate reality that no one can see, is symptomatic of his personality disorder?

Can we all agree the Vice President will be getting an earful, as he travels to Europe – and none of it will be good?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump may have a valid point in pushing some NATO members to spend more on their own defense?

Can we all agree, it won’t be long before Mr. Trump runs out of friendly places to visit, during his election campaign? Oh wait, the campaign is supposed to be over.

Can we all agree It’s about time politicians admit that Trump’s antics are harming our international standing?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s budget plan looks like an all-out attack on the arts?

Can we all agree, it’s amazing that Mr. Trump actually found one person who is qualified to hold a cabinet position?

Can we all agree we’ve reached a new low when the Secretary of Education needs armed guards every time she wants to leave her office?

Can we all agree, despite Mr. Trump’s denials, members of his staff relish the thought of using the National Guard to round up illegal immigrants?

Can we all agree this week’s “Day Without Immigrants’ protest had minimal impact because most immigrants can’t afford a day without pay?

Can we all agree the money that the government will spend just to guard Mr. Trump and his family is simply outrageous?

Can we all agree the offenses of many of the illegal immigrants being rounded up by Trump’s ICE agents, are not the kind of criminals even his supporters thought he was going to target?

Can we all agree White House attempts to ‘insulate’ the President from efforts to expel the so called Dreamers, will fail and he will bear the full brunt of the public’s wrath?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s inability to come up with a new immigration order is an admission that the policy is just wrong?

Can we all agree, Russia’s attempts to manipulate European elections, is just an extension of their success here?

Can we all agree, it might be tougher in the EU, since Mr. Putin won’t be able to coordinate his activity with the actual candidate, as they could with Mr. Trump?

Can we all agree ousted national security advisor Michael Flynn’s biggest contribution to the government might be the multiple congressional investigations he has spawned?

Can we all agree the bizarre political assassination of the half brother of the North Korean leader sounds like a plot from the old ‘Spy vs Spy’ cartoon in Mad Magazine? It sounds like even China agrees.

Can we all agree Mr. Trump and the Israeli Prime Minister have outlined a roadmap to nowhere?

Can we all agree the new GOP plan to overhaul the Affordable Care Act doesn’t look it has much chance of winning the approval of most Republicans?

Can we all agree, any plan to send American troops to Syria would be a non-starter to any other American president?

Can we all agree the GOP plan to cut back on the government safety net will hit their own voters the hardest?

Can we all agree Bill Maher and Samantha Bee have jointly taken on Jon Steward’s role as America’s leading political commentator?

Can we all agree it’s not hard to figure out why traffic deaths are on the rise?

Can we all agree very few people understand the ‘sell by date’ on most food products?

Can we all agree, regardless of party affiliation, Americans are stressed out?

Can we all agree, it’s about time someone banned Kellyanne Conway from  TV?

Can we all agree, Ms Conway needs more than counseling?

Can we all agree the most disheartening Congressional accomplishment this week is the decision to keep Mr. Trump’s tax returns private?

Can we all agree the site of two world leaders discussing security issues in a public restaurant is really beyond belief? What were they thinking?

Can we all agree it’s interesting to see how Mr. Trump’s opinions on a number of topics seem to have changed in three months?

And finally::

The tragic story of loss for one veteran who had to evacuate his home below the Oroville, CA dam.

 

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CWAA: Can We All Agree – 2/11/17 edition

February 11, 2017

Can we all agree, no-one believes the immigration raids being conducted around the country are ‘routine,’ as the the federal agency claims?

Can we all agree the GOP knows it has a real problem when the staunchly red voters in California’s Central Valley, start to turn against them?

Can we all agree, in any other administration  National Security chief Michael Flynn’s contact with Russian officials before he took office, would lead to dismissal? It’s doubtful that will happen in the Trump administration.

Can we all agree the impact of Mr. Trump’s lies about voter fraud are being felt by one poor illegal immigrant with a sixth-grade education who is now facing an 8-year prison term for illegal voting?

Can we all agree, the only thing most people will remember about Mr. Trump’s press conference with the Japanese Prime Minister is the uncomfortable extended handshake? Especially since it’s not a Japanese custom.

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump may figure out a new way to impose his travel ban, but he will never admit he made a mistake?

Can we all agree, resistance to the GOP plan to get rid of the Affordable Care Act, finally seems to have had an impact on the GOP. They are literally living in fear.

Can we all agree the President’s son-in-law seems to be the only grown-up in the room when it comes to foreign policy?

Can we all agree our newly installed Education Secretary may have the roughest tenure of all the cabinet appointees?

Can we all agree Hillary Clinton was right, in questioning Mr. Trump’s mental stability and many Senators now seem to get the message?

Can we all agree Chinese leaders have schooled Mr. Trump on international diplomacy?

Can we all agree Kellyanne Conway doesn’t seem to understand what she did wrong in promoting Ivanka Trump’s product line? But she’s just following the lead of her boss.

Can we all agree, it appears the entire Trump family sees the presidency as one big money-making opportunity? Even their lawyers admit it.

Can we all agree, every time Sean Spicer holds a press briefing he looks foolish?  Whether it’s factual mistakes or simple spelling errors he looks like the buffoon Melissa McCarthy portrays on SNL.

Can we all agree, speaking on SNL, it appears Mr. Trump may be wrong about the show, as it enjoys it’s highest ratings in 22 years?

Can we all agree, even foreign countries seems to understand the role of comedy in the new world order?

Can we all agree the only question about Mr. Trump’s approval ratings are, “how low can they go?”

Can we all agree SNL may just be the tip of the iceberg as comedians of all stripes  continue to get under the thin skin of our new leader?

Can we all agree, it was heartening to see the North Carolina legislature put in its place by the courts, and the NCAA?

Can we all agree Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch probably won a few votes this week when he decried Mr. Trump’s tweets about the Federal Court system?

Can we all agree Senator Mitch McConnell my have given the protest movement a new slogan this week, while boosting Elizabeth Warren’s 2020 presidential aspirations?

Can we all agree it’s great to see some House Democrats grow a little backbone and find new ways to challenge the GOP?

Can we all agree, Mr. Obama must have known the new administration would allow construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline?

Can we all agree it’s unfortunate the entire 84-Lumber Super Bowl ad was not aired during the game?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s pre-Super Bowl comments on Fox were another insult to every American and are even confounding his own party? Except maybe the Senate Majority leader…

and finally:

Can we all agree, speaking of the Big Game, it’s not always about football? This week’s good read.

 

 

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CWAA: Can We All Agree – 2/4/17 edition

February 4, 2017

Can we all agree, after two weeks, our President’s act is already getting a bit old – someone disagrees with a policy, so you mock them on Twitter?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump seems to believe you can treat world leaders the same way?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump doesn’t understand that his job is not a video game, people’s lives are changedbattles will be fought, people will die, because of his oversized ego?

The President's official portrait - would you trust him?

The President’s official portrait – would you trust him?

Can we all agree, someone needs to tell the President his hair growth drug is not working?

Can we all agree, it won’t take long for Republicans to tire of cleaning up the President’s messes? “Attention K-Mart shoppers: Cleanup on aisle 7…”

Can we all agree, even if the travel ban is overturned by the courts, it has forever damaged our reputation as a nation of immigrants?

Can we all agree when you manage to get Koch Industries and Silicon Valley on the same side of an issue, you must have really messed up?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s immigration ban is not making us safer because terrorists groups are just using it as a recruiting tool?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump can fire all the people he wants, but he will need career government workers on his side to effectively implement any of his policies?

Can we all agree the United States appears to have abandoned the Ukraine  and the rest of Europe is scared to death?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s foreign policy decisions are undermining every international relationship we have, because even when he embraces a policy, he changes his mind in a few days?

Can we all agree Vladimir Putin’s visit to Europe this week was just a shopping trip to see what countries were available? And the Europeans know they are powerless to stop him without the United States?

Can we all agree it’s nice to see Mr. Obama and his wife enjoying their time away from the White House, but we would all prefer they come back…now?

Can we all agree the GOP may have accomplished their mission to destroy the Affordable Care Act, by reducing  confidence that it will continue to exist thereby decreasing enrollment?

Can we all agree it appears that some members of Congress have come to their senses and realized 23 million voters depend on the ACA?

Can we all agree, it would be nice to think, the nominee to be Secretary of the Army, was putting country above business, but his withdrawal was simple economics – he didn’t want to give the money he was making?

Can we all agree that eventually the GOP will approve a cabinet for the President but the process will reveal their own lack of  principles?

Can we all agree, Mr Trump has lied once again in saying that  his trust distances him from his business holdings?

Can we all agree Kelleyanne Conway’s ability to be an effective spokesperson for the administration was reduced to zero this week when she made up events to back up her lies?

Can we all agree the President seems to feel that fear is the best way to govern, because he has no other source of authority? But he is learning the hard way that leaks will undermine everything he tries to do.

Can we all agree he is sowing the seeds for an internal upheaval driven by violence and hate?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump doesn’t seem to understand why  American companies are backing away from dealing with him?

Can we all agree the effect of undoing the financial reforms of 2008 will be felt by average consumer, long after Mr. Trump has left office?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s speech at this week’s prayer breakfast was bizarre, even by his low standards?

Can we all agree the administration’s goal to allow non-profits and churches to espouse political views will be refreshing for the many minority churches who oppose him?

Can we all agree, despite what some voters think, the economy in the Obama administration was the strongest it has been in 20 years?

Can we all agree it’s unfortunate that politics has even invaded the Super Bowl?

Can we all agree Milo Yiannopoulos would have a meager audience without the violence he encourages?

Can we all agree he should be allowed to speak so people would understand how little he has to say? And by the way, those protestors at Berkeley (where I live) had nothing to do with the University of California.

16387876_1409637815795935_1832359828888147710_n.jpgCan we all agree Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch will probably win approval since a number of Democrats up for re-election are afraid to oppose him despite his mother’s incompetence and his far right background?

Can we all agree it would appear that San Francisco and Austin will be the battle ground for the sanctuary city movement to protect immigrants already in this country?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump doesn’t need to be religious, but he should understand the role religion plays in the lives of many people around the world?

Can we all agree a political hack like Stephen Bannon has no business being on the National Security Council, that’s why there is a law against it?

And finally, in case you missed it, youth football  is trying to take steps to make the sport safer, so that mothers will let their children play again.

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