SOTU … or the Jerry Lewis Telethon?

February 5, 2019

SOTU … or the Jerry Lewis Telethon?

sotu

President Donald Trump

The man gave a good speech. He did, truly! Boring and predictable, and surely lacking in truth here and there. Still, competent. Wait. What? Pen•in-s(h)u•la? Eh! No BFD. Wait. What? “The Madero Maduro regime.”

Did some words piss me off royal? Absolutely. With respect, if someone I love gets shot, do I care about the identy of the shooter? Undocumented person, as opposed to someone whose gun comes courtesy of Second Amendment rights?

Talking about long wars, started by his party’s last president, without any acknowledgment that he knows Jacksh*t about the issues. Hello?

Does Wall nonsense infuriate me? Obviously, physical barriers in urban centers make sense. Just as clearly,

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Obituaries … and the New York Times

February 1, 2019

Obituaries … and the New York Times

obituaries

Mark Rubin

Like many of us, I imagine, I have an early morning Internet drill. First up? Tucson obits. The functions suck (and don’t get me started on marginal newspapers and their lack of investment in tech infrastructure), but I need to know what’s up with my people.

Next? The New York Times. First, I glance at the headlines. Then, I read anything from Paul Krugman. (A few of my Wingnut friends have Econ degrees. I love listening to them spout off about why he did not deserve the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences.)

Before I leave the Times, I always read the obituaries. Not, here, checking for people

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Trump’s Ugly Reeks / Wreaks

January 22, 2019

Trump’s Ugly Reeks / Wreaks

ugly

President Donald Trump

On January 8, 2011, a few miles from where I lived, a D Congresswoman almost died. An R U.S. District Judge did, and five others, too. A dozen more suffered gunshot wounds, which they live with still.

In the aftermath of the horror, good people formed the National Institute for Civil Discourse. (Here’s a March 18, 2011 Washington Post story about its founding, written by 50+ year friend, former Tucsonan and Rock Star Reporter Sari Horwitz.) I knew this organization back in the day, for my former spouse volunteered there for more than a year, and through the Institute we met and remained friends with co-founder Brint Milward.

WTF?

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A Concerned Man’s Rant

January 8, 2019

A Concerned Man’s Rant

rant

Mark Rubin

I thought about an old client today. He had a sweet deal. Too sweet, according to a wise man I knew from another life. “The other side can’t operate, with your client’s contract. Give the man a break.”

My client grew up believing in the sanctity of anything and everything which advantaged … him. “No way,” he told me. “In America, a contract matters!” Not so much, it turns out, with an executory contract and the Bankruptcy Court. (Executory contract? A contract which requires performance in the future.) A Chapter 11 proceeding terminated the contract, leaving my client in the cold, literally.

The old case came to mind on account of lots of talk

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It’s Personal: Passages … and More

January 5, 2019

It’s Personal: Passages … and More

passages

Mark Rubin

I’m writing on Saturday night, enjoying Lawrence of Arabia on Hollywood at Home on our local PBS station. It’s truly a magnificent movie! And a reminder that for more than 100 years the Middle East has been front and center in the Western World’s decision-making dynamic.

On to my subject matter: passages.

Tangential loss presents special challenges. When a family member or close friend passes, rituals drive the experience. Work stops. People show up. “Whatever you need,” comes quickly. Generally, people who suffer a loss get a wide professional berth.

Not so much with a tangential loss. You knew George H.W. Bush? Don’t expect a trial continuance. Your neighbor passed, so

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Dear Mr. President

December 23, 2018
dear mr. president

President Donald Trump

Dear Mr. President:

I’m one of your constituents. I write because I’m concerned about you. Very concerned!

You tell us regularly that we’re not paying attention to your accomplishments. Wall under construction. Tax cuts. Stock market at record levels. No more nukes in North Korea. NATO nations—not allies, just nations—paying more bigly, because of you. Black Americans better off then ever before. And, always, you’re da Best!

We hear a different story, but that’s all Fake News, right? That’s what you say, almost every day, on Twitter. Must be true, for you’re our POTUS. You’d never tell a tale, Mr. President, would you. Not you.

Still, here you are, stuck in a public housing dump in the

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USPS – Go Post Office!

December 18, 2018

USPS – Go Post Office!

I saw a post on FB the other day, dissing the United Stated Postal Service. I don’t recall the words, but I remember how I felt: Pissed Off! I’m a big USPS fan, and reflexive jabs at it “anger up my blood.” (Satchel Paige – maybe the best baseball pitcher ever – said “avoid fried foods, which angry up the blood.” Me? Fried foods good; dissing USPS bad.)

I shop often on eBay, and I’m the a-m-a-t-e-u-r in my life. (LB loves eBay and the USPS, and she does eBay way better than I ever will.) Almost everything arrives via the Post Office. On time. Unbroken. And with a smile and more from

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Affordable Care Act … Redux -dux -dux -dux

December 15, 2018

Affordable Care Act … Redux -dux -dux -dux

affordable care act
Mark Rubin

Just when you thought it was safe …” it’s not! Late on Friday, December 14,2018, U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor issued a 55-page Memorandum Opinion and Order in Texas v. United States, Case No. 4:18-cv-00167-O, filed in the District Court for the Northern District of Texas.

Texas, along with 19 other states, sought a finding that, with the elimination of the penalty for failing to purchase health insurance, the ACA aka Obamacare violates the U.S. Constitution. The argument? Here it is:

  • In NFIB v. Sebelius, Nos. 11-393, -398, and -400, a bare majority of the U.S.Supreme Court held that because the ACA regulated inactivity—the decision to not
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Defrauding Voters and Campaign Finance Law Violations

December 9, 2018

Defrauding Voters and Campaign Finance Law Violations

campaign finance laws
President Donald Trump

Peter Baker and Nicholas Fandos wrote Prosecutors Effectively Accuse Trump of Defrauding Voters. What Does It Mean? for the New York Times. By doing so, they helped me better understand why campaign finance law violations, as opposed “real crimes,” leave us so deeply dissatisfied. And how did they accomplish this task? By using the word fraud! (Truth be told, the Baker / Fandos piece wanders into deep rough, which happens too often when writers describe this disaster.)

Let me dispense, first, with some nonsense, brought to us by Senator Rand Paul (R – Ky.). Senator Paul tells us “incredibly complicated” campaign finance laws involve “thousands and thousands” of

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The Ninth Circuit: A Tiresome Trope

November 28, 2018

The Ninth Circuit: A Tiresome Trope

the ninth circuit

Mark Rubin

The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit exists. For real! But it’s also a tiresome trope, and just the sort of stand-in you’d expect from Tiresome Trump our president, Donald J. Trump.

Last week’s rant was just that: a rant. POTUS didn’t like a decision from a U.S. District Court judge from California, one of the states which comprise the Ninth Circuit. So, “Obama judge” and this gem, from a 5:21 a.m. tweet on Thanksgiving Day:

Justice Roberts can say what he wants, but the 9th Circuit is a complete & total disaster. It is out of control, has a horrible reputation, is overturned more than any Circuit in

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