Laguna comments

Posted in: Republican health plan in peril as 22 mil set to lose coverage See in context

At least you can keep you can keep your doctor. Ha ha! - just kidding - you will have no doctor.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Trump slams Obama, demands 'apology' over Russia probe See in context

The man just keeps winning and trolling liberals at every turn. 

The latter is certainly true, but the former? He's outsourced his policy to the GOP House, and it's based on a Jenga-style set of policy pieces - if one crumbles, they all go down. What major piece of legislation has he passed to date? (To be fair, he's only five months in - but most presidents have had major initiatives in the pipeline at this point). "His" healthcare plan looks set to go down in flames in the senate, and that will take down his tax reform plan. The GOP controls both houses of congress and the presidency, yet still, they can't do anything right, not just because they don't agree, but because there are still GOP members who will say, "Whoa - this is a load of manure."

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Posted in: Trump slams Obama, demands 'apology' over Russia probe See in context

This guy takes Nixonian to 11.

BTW, anyone note that the CBO says the Senate bill would result in 22 million uninsured?

The US is a ship without a captain.

13 ( +13 / -0 )

Posted in: Trump and 2 Democrats criticize Obama's response to Russia hacking See in context

They tried getting into the RNC and failed.

Wolf, any proof of that? I suspect that they have accessed, if not the RNC itself, at least a number of prominent Republicans. They just have no incentive to use the intel. Yet.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: LDP close behind Koike's party in Tokyo assembly race: poll See in context

None of them appear particularly enthusiastic - except for that guy in the blue jacket, who just appears to be insane.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Proud of dwarfism, woman keeps pursuing dreams See in context

Sounds like a very well-grounded young woman. Some people rather enjoy being different - something my fellow long-term expats likely share in common.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Posted in: Trump reaches out to lawmakers on healthcare as another says 'no' See in context

Trump has no idea what is in this bill. Trump does not care at all what is in this bill. Trump wants a win. Perhaps he will succeed - and when all goes to hell, Trump will blame. Somebody.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Posted in: Senate Republicans unveil Obamacare replacement bill See in context

How this will all end will be interesting to watch - some GOP senators are upset that it's gone to far; others, that it hasn't gone far enough. But by losing the individual mandate while retaining prohibition against discrimination against the already sick, the plan as currently written would absolutely destroy the private market. No insurer could make money under such a scenario, so all of them will simply return to insuring through corporations. It will be actually worse than the status quo ante - it will be impossible to buy private insurance.

The good news is that coverage for Trump, Pence, and members of Congress would also revert to status quo ante, meaning 75% of their health insurance would be paid for by taxpayers. Plus, for an extra $600 a year, congressmen get access to the Office of the Attending Physician in the Capitol, staffed by Navy doctors (including specialists), nurses, technicians and pharmacists.

So the bill is not all bad - if you like that kind of thing.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: California man vists Disneyland 2,000 days in a row See in context

Hey - that Alice is rather attractive. Worked there in high school and a bit in college until I found the pay unsatisfactory - but there were perks. Such as hooking up with the character girls.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Senate Republicans unveil Obamacare replacement bill See in context

This is not a "health bill." A health bill would try to improve the healthcare system by increasing access, either by cutting costs or increasing subsidies. This does not even pretend to do either.

This is a tax bill, pure and simple.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Posted in: Trump's new idea -- a 'solar wall' on Mexican border See in context

My question is, does he really believe the verbal diarrhea that emits from his mouth, or is he just playing us? (A third choice is that doesn't believe anything at all and just says whatever pops into his head, forgetting it the next day.)

8 ( +11 / -3 )

Posted in: Daniel Day-Lewis says he's retiring from acting See in context


You lead a very uninformed life. Check out his penultimate performance as John Prester in "The Crucible." He has always been an actor's actor.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: M5.0 quake hits southwestern Japan; no tsunami danger See in context

In Kumamoto here, where we've grown somewhat accustomed to earthquakes (had 3,000 discernible ones after the big one). I felt a gentle shaking which immediately told me the epicenter was far away. It seems to be on the same fault as those that have rocked us recently. Interesting is its depth: 40KM, compared with normal depths of 10KM. I have no idea why. I do hope that it does not influence the Nankai Trough. When that baby goes, I've got a spare room ready for refugees from Oita and Miyazaki.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Trump's son-in-law Kushner seeks to revive Mideast talks See in context

Trump tweets:

During my recent trip to the Middle East I stated that there can no longer be funding of Radical Ideology. Leaders pointed to Qatar - look!

A few days later:

Qatar's Ministry of Defense said on Wednesday the country signed a deal to buy F-15 fighter jets from the United States for $12 billion.

Perhaps he has a point. American leaders have always tried to solve the Palestinian-Israeli crisis using logic and have all failed. Maybe simply being completely crazy and pulling stuff out of your butt will help.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Posted in: Half of students find primary school English education less than useful: survey See in context

Once had a class with five elementary-school aged students, and we began with "How are you" (followed by a similar question - i.e., "How is your mother"), and FINE was not allowed. They had to think - tired? excited? bored? And then we'd ask why, and they had to think again and explain.

Thinking. So simple, yet no one in the BOE seems to have thought of this.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Posted in: Man on fire staggers into electric appliance store See in context

Man on fire staggers into electric appliance store

I'm sorry - I've suffered burns so know their pain - but you might wonder if the conversation went like this: "Excuse me, madam, but could you kindly direct me to the fire extinguisher section?"

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: 10 passengers from Hong Kong bypass airport immigration by mistake See in context

Remember arriving by ferry to Macao from Hong Kong back in the '80s by ferry - we berthed before dawn, and my fellow passengers - and also, apparently, the customs staff - were content to wait until sunrise, but I had stuff to do, so I went to customs - and no one was there! I had to yell several times until finally some sleepy-eyed official appeared and dutifully stamped my passport. Don't know what repercussions would have occurred if I'd simply continued on my way.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: U.S. student who was returned from North Korea in coma dies See in context

From what I've read, about 20% of his brain had died, a phenomenon associated with prolonged asphyxia. Perhaps they'd strangled him or held his head under water.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: Study: Shootings kill or injure 19 U.S. children each day See in context

Daniel does have a small point, if made in a very obtuse way (clearly, he was referring to blacks): While blacks make up 15% of the US population, minor shootings among blacks constitute 45% - a bit over twice the national average. Race thus has no bearing on the gun control debate. Poverty, education, the gun culture - these need to be addressed. Anything else is just kicking the can down the road - as usual.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Study: Shootings kill or injure 19 U.S. children each day See in context

—The annual death rate (for children) is nearly 2 out of 100,000 children 

ーthe (homicide) rate (is) less than 1 per 100,000

So you're twice as likely to be killed as a child - presumably accidentally or incidentally - as to be murdered - the very reason the NRA and their ilk vomit to promote gun leniency. Kinda pulls the rug out of the argument that guns prevent violence.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Trump blasts 'witch hunt' but lawyer insists no probe See in context

Hee hee. Polls. Trump obsesses with them. His latest tweet:

The new Rasmussen Poll, one of the most accurate in the 2016 Election, just out with a Trump 50% Approval Rating.That's higher than O's #'s!

Ha ha! Seriously deep belly chuckle. It's not just his obsession with his (rapidly-vanishing) popularity; it's not just the inaccuracy of his statement (Obama was at 56% at five months); it's his desperate clinging at the straw of a Rasmussen Poll.

As others have pointed out, and as Hillary certainly knows (and knew before the election - that's why she'd cancelled her planned NY fireworks show a few days beforehand), reality has a way of biting one in the butt. Mechanisms are in movement over which Trump has no control, and boy, does he hate that.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Posted in: One dead, 10 injured after vehicle rams into people leaving London mosque See in context

Felipe - yes, it is. I'm old enough to remember the hijackings and bombings of the '70s and '80s. It probably feels like more due to the Internet, which has had two psychological effects:

  • More people are aware of these tragedies in real time, rather than having to read about them the next day in the paper;

  • People comment on and share news, which gives them a feeling of stake in the events.

Despite all the violence and idiocy, I'm still an optimist: The world is a much better place now than it was when I was born in 1965. All we can do is to keep striving to make it better.

18 ( +20 / -2 )

Posted in: Trump blasts 'witch hunt' but lawyer insists no probe See in context

Sekulow made an interesting observation:

Before you get to an investigation, you have to get to, ‘Does the constitution allow the prosecution of this type of matter.’ If there is going to be an investigation, which right now there is not, you would of course raise the constitutional issues first.

So basically, he's claiming that, because the president cannot be prosecuted (other than by congress, which will likely not do so), there's no need for an investigation.

Talk about cart before horse. Russian meddling in the election fully deserves detailed forensics, as does the Administration's response (or lack thereof). The American people deserve to know what Trump and his clique knew and how they acted. This is entirely unrelated to prosecuting the president.

Not a very smart statement for a lawyer, and it will be ignored. It does signal desperation.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Posted in: Trump blasts 'witch hunt' but lawyer insists no probe See in context

Thanks, Toasted. I loved Trumps tweet re: how irked he is about “the Russia thing with Trump and Russia” because it sounds so much like an American TV show name - like Captain and Tennile or Sonny and Cher.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

Posted in: Portugal forest fire kills 57 See in context

Horrific. This will likely heighten EU anger at Trump's withdrawal from the Paris Treaty.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Aircraft, vessels search for missing U.S. sailors See in context

CrazyJoe, I appreciate your comments on this, both from yesterday and this morning. Thanks.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: Rodman hails North Korea visit as a 'good trip' See in context

If Rodman were returned with severe brain damage, no one would notice the difference.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Trump announces he's being investigated See in context

I think there is a 50/50 chance of impeachment if he is found guilty based on factual evidence.

Problem with that is that no court of law can try the president - only congress can do so. When the various investigations are concluded, the info will be observed by congressional party leaders (all GOP at the moment), and they are fully able to ignore it all completely if they so choose.

Circumstances may change after the mid-terms, but under the current congress, my guess is they'll just sweep it all under the rug, and none of it will ever become public.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: Trump announces he's being investigated See in context

"Trump's legal team" - damn, that's gotta be a soul-killing job, arising each morning to parse his tweets and then issue interpretations that don't deepen the hole he's in.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan enacts law to toughen penalties for sex offenses See in context

My guess is that it is symbolic: Limit your looks to my head, not my body, just as you would do to a man.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

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