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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 8/5/17 edition

August 5, 2017

Can we all agree, the August recess in Washington is really a much needed vacation for all of us?

Can we all agree, when a Republican Senate leaves town, but stays in session to prevent a Republican President from making any appointments, it’s not the Democrat’s fault?

Can we all agree, The President may soon be faced with signing a bill which effectively prevents him from firing Special Counsel Robert Mueller?

Can we all agree, Attorney General Jeff Sessions would have a much easier job if he didn’t have to waste time investigating leaks from the White House?

Can we all agree, it would be a disaster if the President fired his national security advisor, H. R. McMaster, since the Lt. General seems to be the only grownup in the White House?

This week's Newsweek cover

This week’s Newsweek cover

Can we all agree, it’s no surprise the President’s cabinet would be led by a pastor who doesn’t think women belong in politics?

Can we all agree, Newsweek Magazine may have reached a new level of political commentary with this week’s cover?

Can we all agree, until this week, when Mr. Mueller impanelled a grand jury in Washington, many of us suspected the investigation was going nowhere?

Can we all agree, John Kelley deserves credit for bringing some discipline to the White House – at least for one week?

Can we all agree, as the economy continues to improve, it’s clear Wall Street could care less about the Russian investigation?

Can we all agree, the NAACP’s travel advisory for Missouri, will deter travel by  more than just minorities or members of the LGBT community?

Can we all agree, The Pope is winning the PR battle with evangelical Christians?

Can we all agree, President Trump  probably thinks what happened in the Venezuela election is the same thing that happened last November when Hillary Clinton won the popular vote?

Can we all agree, the transcripts of the President’s conversations with the leaders of Mexico and Australia, just proves the public Trump and private Trump are interchangeable – and both are embarrassing?

Can we all agree, whether we like it or not, may not be on the horizon, even if researchers have been able to edit the DNA in cells?

Can we all agree, the proposed bill to limit immigration, runs counter to the bedrock principles our country was built on?

Can we all agree, presidential advisor Stephen Miller should be deported?

Can we all agree, the senators behind the immigration bill should either read Joe Aaron’s post on this blog, or listen to any of a dozen economists saying the same thing?

Can we all agree, Chelsea Clinton spoke for many of us when she defended the White House against charges that it was “a dump.’

Can we all agree, what Arizona Senator Jeff Flake says in his new book needed to be said, but it’s doubtful he’ll be a senator after the next election? But, you can count on seeing him in 2020.

Can we all agree, Millennials are welcome to the title of most populous generation – now they can get blamed for everything ?

Can we all agree, Donald Trump is once again playing to his base, which has dwindled to just 33%, by asking the attorney general to probe discrimination against whites in college admissions?

Can we all agree, When the President and Congress return from vacation it appears there may be a lot of bipartisan cooperation, although the President may not be included?

Can we all agree, the Chicago Cubs made a great PR move by giving Steve Bartman a World Series ring?

Can we all agree, it would appear the judicial system may be the only way to get the EPA to do its job?

Can we all agree, the best story of the week might be the judge who took the FAA to task for allowing the airlines to reduce the seat sizes and leg room?

Can we all agree, no one needed to be found guilty more than Martin Shkreli?

Can we all agree, the Attorney General, needs to do a better job of laying the groundwork for his case to force communities to back ICE activities?

and finally:

As I’ve said before we seem to have reached the beginning of the end for the internal combustion engine – even the GOP cannot turn back the forces of the free market.

 

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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 4/22/17 edition

April 22, 2017

Can we all agree the so-called ‘Dreamers’ will take little solace in Donald Trump’s assurances that they have nothing to worry about, as long as Jeff Sessions is the attorney general and is issuing threats to sanctuary cities?

Can we all agree Exxon-Mobile must have thought their request for a waiver from sanctions, allowing them to drill in the Black Sea, was going to be approved by the Trump administration, or they would have withdrawn it months ago?

California's drought may be over, but the desert is in full bloom. (photos courtesy of Dr. Gail Dubinsky)

California’s drought may be over, but the desert is in full bloom. (photos courtesy of Dr. Gail Dubinsky)

IMG_1291

Photos from Joshua Tree National Park, near Palm Springs, CA.

 

Can we all agree, the media is finally starting to learn most of Mr. Trump’s tweets are just attempts to get attention when he thinks the world is ignoring him?

Can we all agree today’s March for Science is not politicizing science, that was done years ago, when George W. Bush denied climate change?

Can we all agree English Prime Minister Theresa May obviously was not paying close attention to the  results last time an early election was called?

Can we all agree, tomorrow’s election in France will have an even larger impact on the future of the EU, than the Brexit vote?

Can we all agree conservatives across the country welcome the prospect of a violent confrontation when Ann Coulter speaks at Berkeley on May 2?

Can we all agree, like most irrational acts, there is no logic to explain the suicide of ex-football star Aaron Hernandez?IMG_1258

Can we all agree Sarah Palin, showed the world how little respect she has for the President when she decided the ‘tramp look’ was the best choice for her White House visit? That doesn’t even take into account the questionable friends she decided to bring along?

Can we all agree the world, even Republicans, will hang on every word President Obama says when he speaks  Monday in Chicago?

Can we all agree Mr. Sessions comments about the court in Hawaii, which ruled against Mr. Trump’s immigration plan, show an amazing lack of understanding of the Constitution he is supposed to uphold?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s insistence on pushing health care reform indicates how desperate he is to avoid looking irrelevant and improve his abysmal ratings? The fact that the new plan is laughable is almost beside the point.

Can we all agree it doesn’t look like tax reform will get done either, unless Mr. Trump releases his tax returns? Even Sean Spicer’s twisted logic will not overcome Democratic opposition.

Can we all agree there is no doubt the White House will find that China is illegally manipulating the steel market, so Mr. Trump can act tough, and do absolutely nothing?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump must think we are all idiots when he calls on businesses to hire American workers while Trump ties and shirts continue to be manufactured outside the US?

Can we all agree, he is right about one thing, the H-1B visa system needs to be reformed?

Can we all agree Rep. Jason Chaffetz may have felt he had no option but to leave the House and his post as head of the Oversight Committee, but anyone who thinks a new chairman will investigate the  ethics violations of the new administration, is just naive?

Can we all agree the link between Ivanka Trump’s trademark approvals in China and her meeting with the Chinese president is among the first things that need to be investigated?

Can we all agree, Henry Kissinger’s comments in ‘Time’ magazine on Jared Kushner’s leadership skills don’t even rise to the level of ‘damning with faint praise?’

Can we all agree Starbucks’ new coffee drink is a novelty created just for social media and publicity? Do we really need to ingest more chemicals?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s desire to be liked by business leaders is the driving force behind his policy decisions?

Can we all agree, a White House which has no idea which way a carrier group is headed sounds a lot like the ‘Gang Who Couldn’t Shoot Straight.’

Can we all agree it was only a matter of time before we made the Arctic Ocean a garbage dump, just like the Pacific ?

Can we all agree the Venezuelan government is failing in it’s efforts to make  it look like the riots on the streets of Caracas were instigated by the United States?

Can we all agree one thing the leaders of the United States, Russia, Egypt and Turkey all have in common are  their outsized egos?

Can we all agree Emirates Airlines decision to cut back flights to the United States was largely symbolic to send a message to the Trump administration about its immigration policies?

Can we all agree few people have much sympathy for Bill O’Reilly, especially since he’s getting $25 million as a buyout?

Can we all agree it’s pretty clear Gisele Bundchen was behind Tom Brady’s decision not to atted the White House ceremony honoring her husband’s Super Bowl victory?

Can we all agree the near-victory of Democrat Jon Ossoff in Georgia’s 6th Congressional District has the GOP very worried about the mid-term elections ?

Can we all agree Homeland Secretary John Kelly, really needs to develop a thicker skin if he expects to stay in office much longer?

And finally:

This week’s good read is a touching tribute to one of the victims of sexual abuse scandal in the Boston archdiocese.

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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 – 9/3/16 edition

September 3, 2016

Can we all agree that, with stops in California and now China, President Obama is making sure his environmental legacy lives on long after he leaves office?

Can we all agree this week’s biggest loser was Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto?

Gene Wilder: He will be missed (Photo by Steve Wood)

Gene Wilder: He will be missed (Photo by Steve Wood)

Can we all agree the only folks who expected a pivot on Mr. Trump’s immigration stand were wishful thinking Republicans?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s visit to an African-American church in Detroit will have to be an Academy Award performance if it’s going to make any difference in the campaign?

Can we all agree the release of FBI files on Hillary Clinton the Friday before Labor Day weekend, guarantees that only the politicians will be paying attention?

Can we all agree that while polls seem to show the presidential race tightening, it’s only a matter of time before Trump implodes again and the margin widens?

Can we all agree the leaders of Venezuela seem incapable to doing anything to provide even basic services or food to their citizens?

Can we all agree the impeachment vote in Brazil was a foregone conclusion?

Can we all agree that when ‘only 151,000 new jobs’ are created in a month it’s time to stop worrying about the economy?

Can we all agree that anyone who thinks the North Carolina voter laws were designed to stop voter fraud are just fooling themselves?

Can we all agree the states should be more worried about foreign hackers than they are about local voter fraud?

Can we all agree that launching a new generic version of the EpiPen which is still 10 times more expensive than it was a few years ago, is still outrageous?

Can we all agree we’re having second thoughts about this whole privatization of space travel, now that another rocket has exploded on a Cape Canaveral launch pad?

Can we all agree the United States should be embarrassed that we’ve ‘reached our goal’ of accepting 10,000 Syrian refugees?

Can we all agree the situation in Syria is so bad the sides can’t even agree on whose bomb killed an ISIS leader?

Can we all agree that the European Union’s aggressive stand against the tax policies of its own countries, is just discouraging business?

Can we all agree, it does seem a bit odd that Wikileaks never seems to say anything bad about Russia or its leader Vladimir Putin?

Can we all agree we should be just as outraged that homes were allowed to be built on contaminated land in Indiana, as we were about the water in Flint. MI?

Can we all agree that American’s reaction to even minor incidents just shows we have have a collective case of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)?

Can we all agree Anthony Weiner has some serious issues to deal with if he ever wants to return to a public life? Chris Brown might want to retire too.

Quarterback Colin Kapernick kneels during the national anthem next to former Green Beret Nate Boyer, (CAP photo)

Quarterback Colin Kapernick kneels during the national anthem next to former Green Beret Nate Boyer. (AP photo)

Can we all agree that San Francisco Forty-Niners quarterback Colin Kapernick has every right to stage a protest, but the whole scene seemed a bit odd, since he had never even mentioned anything about human rights since he got to the NFL?

Can we all agree that when Americans read about the death of the Uzbekistan president, they had no idea how to find the country on a map?

Can we all agree that when your flagship product has to be recalled because the batteries overheat and explode, you have a serious quality control issue?

Can we all agree its nice to know that living organisms were on the planet a few billion years sooner than we first thought?

Can we all agree every dog owner knows that their pet understands every word they say?

and finally:

Can we all agree that Gene Wilder will be missed?

And, in case you are worried about cheating on your taxes, at least one expert has some good news.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree – 6/25/16 edition

June 25, 2016

Can we all agree, the long term impact of the Brexit vote is probably somewhere between the doom and gloom of the economists and the euphoric reaction of Donald Trump?

Can we all agree that only Mr. Trump could put it in context by telling us how good it will be for his Scottish golf course?

Can we all agree with the members of the major EU members: If the separation must happen it should be done quickly?

Can we all agree that it probably won’t have much impact on the election in the United States? There’s a big difference between leaving a political union and electing a racist egomaniac – more likely it will serve as a warning to Americans.

Bedlam in the US House. (AP photo)

Bedlam in the US House. (AP photo)

Can we all agree House Speaker Paul Ryan is probably wondering what he has to do toy get some headlines for any of his GOP platform plans?

Can we all agree the Democrat’s sit-in was the best social media  event of the political season?

Can we all agree the Democrats may not have won any votes on gun control measures but they have succeeded in framing the conversation and putting pressure on the GOP?

Can we all agree that Connecticut’s law limiting gun possession may become the template for other states now that the Supreme Court has upheld it?

Can we all agree the battle over California’s gun-control ballot measure will add some interest to the fall election?

Can we all agree this week’s New Yorker article may be the definitive look at guns in America? And if you don’t have time to read it catch Terry Gross’s interview with the author.

Can we all agree that George Lucas will have to make some changes in his approach if he wants to build a museum for his Star Wars art? Two cities have now rejected his initial plans.

Can we all agree the last thing the Brazil Olympics needed was a suspension of their drug testing laboratory?

Can we all agree it seems the list of athletes who will not be going to the Rio Olympics may be longer the list of who will be attending?

Can we all agree The GOP glee over the Supreme Court’s non-decision on the President’s immigration plan will be short lived if it costs them the Senate and the Presidency this fall?

Can we all agree that Bernie Sanders has pretty much lost all the leverage he thought he had over Hillary Clinton and the platform committee?

Can we all agree VW’s rumored $10b settlement with owners of diesel cars may be a bargain if it at least puts the issue to bed?

Can we all agree the wildfire burning east of Los Angeles could be the most serious fire no-one is paying attention to?

Can we all agree the owners of Justin Wines may have done everything growers should not do when they want to expand their vineyards?

Can we all agree it’s good to know the Marines finally got it right when they tracked down the real participants in the famous flag raising photo of Iwo Jima?

Can we all agree that, as far as the  Baltimore police are concerned, a ‘not guilty’ verdict does not mean the officers did not bear some responsibility for what happened to Freddie Gray.

Can we all agree we’re not  sure what the Supreme Court’s ruling on affirmative action really means?

Can we all agree the pilots of the plane which rescued two ill workers from the South Pole are worthy heroes of the week?

Can we all agree it will take public pressure to regulate the fracking industry now that the Supreme Court has delayed the EPA plan to regulate the use of public lands?

Can we all agree that, while it’s hard to believe, Mr. Trump hit a new low this week  in his pandering speech to Evangelicals ?

Can we all agree that the closing of the investigation into the 1964 murder of three Civil Rights workers is a sad end to an embarrassing chapter of American History?

Lebron James: NBA finals MVP but he won't be going to Rio Olympics.

Lebron James: NBA finals MVP but he won’t be going to Rio Olympics.

Can we all agree most of us never dreamed we would hear that the energy produced by California’s sooner-to-be-closed Diablo Canyon Nuclear plant could be replaced by alternative energy sources?

Can we all agree LeBron James deserved the MVP trophy in this year’s NBA finals series?

Can we all agree the USGA deserves all the scorn they have received for their mind-boggling decision in last weekend’s US Open Championship?

Can we all agree that Hillary Clinton is learning what GOP rivals learned the hard way: No matter what you say or do it’s difficult to keep Mr. Trump out of the headlines even if it’s because of  lies, bizarre interviews or  incompetence?

Can we all agree that Venezuela should now be considered a failed state?

and finally:

Can we all agree the courage of the rape victim in this story is remarkable?

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