Special Election in Georgia goes to the Republicans

Jon Ossoff lost the special election in Georgia tonight, 47% to 52%. On one hand this represents a disappointment for the Democrats, yet they did achieve a significant improvement within the district compared tot he last election held there, where current Heath Secretary Tom Price cruised in with a 23% lead. The reality of this however changes little; Ossoff alone would have never changed the orientation of the House, not with a 24 seat majority held by the Republicans, with the greatest shift being a victory for the Democrats and the Resistance, but nothing substantive.

Additionally in light of the nature of a special election, it is important to note that this loss doesn’t necessarily mean that 2018 will appear nor act the same way. It’s unlikely 51 million will be spent on each congressional race, or that the issues focused on will b the same as a conservative leaning upper middle class white district. What matters for the Dems is that they learn from the tactics shown during the election, the platforms Ossoff focused on versus what the voters focused, the attacks by the Handel and Ossoff that worked, the ones that didn’t and what they can earn from this. Hopefully those lessons will help in 2018.

(okay yeah it’s a little disappointing, sue me)

 

Citation:
Bloomberg: Special Election Results

About the London Tower Fire

Currently (19/06/17) the London police have announced that 58 deaths have occurred so far in regards to the Tower fire, though with dozens still missing there is every chance that number will continue to rise. In the wake of the fire the responses have been at once typical of the British people, raising 3.8 million for aid, resources and water provided, housing available though little in the way of privacy, and distinct due to the nature of the fire, and the residents repeated warnings regarding the building.

The issue there is complicated due, mostly as it requires an understanding of who is responsible. On one hand the governments austerity program has not helped local councils in regards to housing difficulties in much of London and beyond, yet said council is also being reported as to have deliberately ignored the warnings of the residents of the buildings, especially after the recent renovations (designed to make the building look nicer, not better suited for the residents already living there) placed new cladding that experts warned appeared flammable. Coupled with the fact this is a Labor stronghold, but the government is indeed Tory, and the complications arise.

In the end the ones responsible are the renovators and the council for failing repeatedly to heed the warnings of the residents and experts, and their favoring the wealthy in the area over concerned residents has had an terrible consequence. This doesn’t excuse the central government who could have pushed for stricter regulations in regards to building safety, nor the current Mayor of London Mr. Khan who in turn could have leveraged authority, in the event that he was aware (I am unsure of this at this time).

It is unsurprising, in the wake of this event, that angry citizens most likely shaken by yet another attack and this event have taken to the streets and to the bodies responsible to vent their rage and demand action. Whether May, who met with residents of the building after an initial stumble in regards to her response to the fire, or the local bodies can make amends for this event, and ensure it does not occur again especially in the name of cheaper renovations I cannot say.

 

Citation:
Bloomberg: 58 declared dead in wake of London Tower Fire 

Congressional shooting

On Wednesday morning (14/6/17) five total individuals were shot by James Hodgkinson, a left wing radical who acquired a gun and proceeded to open fire during the congressional baseball game held in Alexandria, Washington D.C. Currently no one other than the shooter is dead, though all are currently in hospital and some are in critical condition. I am unaware of the extent of said wounds at this time.

Due to what information has been found in regards to Hodgkinson, it can be surmised this was a politically inspired attack, based off rhetoric the man spouted on his Facebook page, and is seemingly in response to the President. There is no excuse, there is no justification for this act.

I wish the victims a swift and saferecovery.

 

Citation:
The Atlantic: Live Blog on Shooting

Sessions Testimony thoughts

A quick summary: interesting, if empty.

In long form: the reality is, very little was reveled in regards to the Trump campaign, though what was not said, Sessions reactions and a lack of response to a particular issue were of some interest regardless.

Firstly, there was no mention nor question in regards to Sessions response to Comey’s request for space from the president, in light of his private moments with the man, nor any questions regarding Sessions attempted resignation. Whether this was just due tot he senate not focusing on those areas, or a lack of time due to Stalling from Sessions and interruptions from the republicans I cannot say for sure.

Secondly, Sessions was continually rattled and shaken in regards to heated questions from the Democrats, and independent Senator King. This lack of composure showed itself in his retaliations to numerous senators after repeated questions, especially in light of his stonewalling, his refusal to answer questions in regards to Trumps thoughts on Comey and Russia, citing justice department traditions. There’s no question he could have responded regardless of such a tradition, as other Attorney Generals had, but the questions remain unanswered.

Finally, Sessions did mention one important thing: during and after the campaign Trump showed no interest in what Russia may have been doing in regards to the election. In turn much of his team including Sessions gave no credence or attention to the matter. This is a startlingly display of willful ignorance, and as best as I can tell shows Trumps ambivalence to the idea of election manipulation and rigging, so long as he perceives it in a way that benefits him, or doesn’t get in his way.

I can’t say I’m surprised by the lack of disclosure, though the deliberate ignorance to the Russia issue is interesting, and a possible lead out for Trump if he or his team is caught in any issue regarding said manipulation: it happened, but he wasn’t aware of it, I suppose. Wonder what’ll come out next?

 

Citation:
Politico: 5 Takeaways from Sessions testimony

Coms Director Leaves Trump Administration

Trumps Communication Chief Dubke has resigned from his role, following Trumps return from his overseas trip. Allegedly this was not forced by the Trump administration or the president himself, but at this stage this departure is being labelled as the begging of a reshuffle of the Administration. Given the nature of the role it isn’t terribly surprising that Dubke would choose to leave, as many communications directors do, former President Obama went through four officials, and one acting, communication directors throughout his tenure. However, it must be noted that departing this early in this administrations duration is unusual, and whether that is due to the unusually high demands of this role in this particular time, or due to the complaints by the current president are unknown.

If there is a cause for concern it is due to Dubkes deposition, the man was known for being a mild-mannered individual who did not fit into any one camp or faction, allowing him to cooperate with all members of the Administration, potentially at any rate. Individuals like this are rare in this white house and more would always be preferred to the divided factions that currently populate it. At least for Trump that is.

At this stage I don’t know how far any potential shake up could be, or even if it may occur, regardless a new communications director will be needed and that will be an unimaginably difficult role to fill with this administration, and this president, coordinating the recruitment. My guess, it’ll either be Spicer, already claiming he will be handling fewer daily press briefings, whether that will mean he takes this role or is responding to criticism from Trump is not yet known. Alternatively, Trump himself may take the role, seeing as he doesn’t let anyone else speak for him.

 

Citation:
Bloomberg: Trump Communications Chief Dubke Leaving, White House Says

Update on Manchester

Today in Manchester, U.K., during the conclusion of an Ariana Grande concert, a bomb went off. Currently (4:24 pm 23/05/2017) the casualty report reads that 19 are dead, and 50 are injured. Currently this appears to be a terrorist attack, however there has been no confirmation nor claiming of said attack.

Attention should of course be currently focused on the victims of this attack. I haven’t the slightest interest in making whoever orchestrated this attack a prominent part of this event, to validate the attack or make them in anyway relevant or important. They are not. They are thug/s, they do not matter, and the sooner they are found, caught or killed the better.

I’ve never understood these attacks, this hatred towards western nations. I don’t particularly care too. There’s no excuse.

Good luck to Manchester, and my condolences to the victims.