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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Fri 14 Jun , 2019 1:35 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
Groan.... ;)




btw, it looks like 2 things came to an end yesterday and today. 1) The federal government, in the person of Trump, has decided that some federal laws (in this case, the Hatch Act) will be blatantly ignored. This follows Trump deciding that it's OK to accept assistance from foreign governments (Russia, maybe others like North Korea, Saudi Arabia?) to get reelected, another violation of norms and laws (his reelection campaign promptly announced that they would follow his lead and make decisions on a "case by case" basis.https://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/448515-trump-campaign-says-it-will-handle-foreign-intel-offers-on-case-by-case)

https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/06/kellyanne-conway-repeatedly-broke-law/591628/
Quote:
The Office of Special Counsel says that Kellyanne Conway, a senior adviser to President Donald Trump, repeatedly violated the Hatch Act and should be fired....OSC, not to be confused with the office of former Special Counsel Robert Mueller, is the federal agency that polices the federal civil service.

OSC’s recommendation is important not because it is likely to result in Conway’s firing, but because it is almost certain not to. There’s no question of Conway’s guilt here: OSC doesn’t waffle about whether she broke the law, and there’s no Mueller-style legalistic parsing. The report’s conclusion is clear, as is the recommended punishment. And yet the only person who can punish Conway is the president—the very man on whose electoral behalf she broke the law, and who has made clear, as recently as Thursday, his willingness to break the law in order to win elections.


https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/448536-trump-says-he-will-not-fire-kellyanne-conway-for-hatch-act-violations
Quote:
Trump says he will not fire Kellyanne Conway for Hatch Act violations




2) Our Minister of Propaganda has resigned. I find myself wondering whether she finally found a lie that she couldn't promote. Or maybe she's just another rat leaving a sinking ship. The following is a fitting tribute to Sarah Sanders:
https://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2019/06/sarah-sanders-white-house-press-secretary-resigns/591706/
Quote:
The White House press secretary—the office, if not the person—is an outgrowth of the idea that, in a democracy, information matters, and facts matter, and while politicians and the press may tangle and tussle, they are ultimately on the same team. Sanders, who ascended to the press-secretary role in July of 2017, after the brief and peevish tenure of Sean Spicer, publicly rejected that idea. To watch a Sanders press conference, or to watch her representing the White House on cable news, was to be confronted with a vision of America that is guided by political Darwinism—an environment in which everything is a competition, with the winner determined by who can shout the loudest, who can distract the most effectively, who can get in the best insult before the time for questioning is over.

Here is some of the misinformation Sanders has spread on behalf of the White House...




Trump has been off the chain for a while now, from promising Kim Jong Un that he wouldn't let the CIA spy on North Korea to telling White House staff they must lie for him and deny that any polls suggest people would vote for Biden over him. I assume he's also the one who gave Pompeo the OK/ instructions to go out and say we know Iran is responsible for the attacks on Japanese tankers in the Middle East, without presenting any evidence to anyone, and while everyone else is still saying "we don't know who did it." (suspicious timing, the latest attacks, when Japan's prime minister Abe is in Iran trying to defuse tensions. It looks very much like someone wants a war and I doubt Iran is that stupid.)




Regarding Iran, if anyone wants to read the real report from the US Central Command and NOT the Pompeo/ Trump version, here it is:
https://www.centcom.mil/MEDIA/STATEMENTS/Statements-View/Article/1875666/us-central-command-statement-on-june-13-limpet-mine-attack-in-the-gulf-of-oman/utm_source/hootsuite
Among other things, here's their statement on that mine the Iranians removed. It doesn't look like there's any evidence they're the ones who planted it; they just took it off after the crew of one ship found it. And it was not something done covertly at night.
Quote:
At 11:05 a.m. local time USS Bainbridge approaches the Dutch tug Coastal Ace, which had rescued the crew of twenty-one sailors from the M/T Kokuka Courageous who had abandoned their ship after discovering a probable unexploded limpet mine on their hull following an initial explosion.

...At 4:10 p.m. local time an IRGC Gashti Class patrol boat approached the M/T Kokuka Courageous and was observed and recorded removing the unexploded limpet mine from the M/T Kokuka Courageous.


The rest of it sounds like they received a distress call from 40 miles away and, when they arrived, 2 hours later they found Iranian ships among those responding. I'm not sure how you translate that to "Iran was responsible."

And yet here's our moron president:
https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/448641-trump-rejects-irans-denial-about-attack-on-oil-tankers-pointing-to
Quote:
“Well Iran did do it, and you know they did it because you saw the boat,” Trump said Friday morning on “Fox & Friends.” “It’s got, essentially, Iran written all over it.” ...

Trump pointed to a video the military released Thursday night that it says shows Iran's Revolutionary Guard removing a mine from a targeted oil tanker.


Iran's statement:
Quote:
Iran pushed back on the administration’s claims that it was responsible for the Thursday attacks, calling the accusations “alarming.” “We are responsible for ensuring the security of the strait and we have rescued the crew of those attacked tankers in the shortest possible time,” Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi said on Friday.


And our devious Secretary of State:
Quote:
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who first declared Iran responsible for the attacks, said the government’s conclusion was “based on intelligence, the weapons used, the level of expertise needed to execute the operation, recent similar Iranian attacks on shipping and the fact that no proxy group operating in the area has the resources and proficiency to act with such a high degree of sophistication.”


I don't know whether Iran was responsible, though I have my doubts. But, at this stage, Trump and Pompeo are just putting out bullshit and propaganda as "facts." Trump isn't even using any common sense, which is pretty alarming when he has the ability to start a war.

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The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Fri 14 Jun , 2019 8:27 pm 
The Grey Amaretto as Supermega-awesome Proud Heretic Girl
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I missed the better pun that I saw someone else send out later.

Dolphin of France.

:D

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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Sun 16 Jun , 2019 8:53 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
That works pretty well since Trump does love absolute rulers. :)
I was trying to think of a way to use 'porpoise' but wasn't clever enough.

Idle curiosity - I wonder if anyone still claims the title Dauphin of France, since the monarchs are gone.


This amused me because it's so appropriate to name something illegal for Dear Leader:
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/middleeast/2019/06/israel-names-illegal-golan-settlement-trump-190616172137677.html
Quote:
Israel names illegal Golan settlement after Trump

This was also good:
Quote:
Currently known as Bruchim, it is over 30 years old and has a population of 10 people.



I was actually reading Al Jazeera out of curiosity on the Iran situation. The culprit in the latest attacks is still uncertain, though I'm not the the only one to think there are logical reasons to doubt it's Iran:
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/middleeast/2019/06/iran-blame-suspected-attacks-gulf-tankers-190615165831404.html

Not that any of that will matter if the US decides to go to war. Most of the media will follow along obediently and the Democratic leadership and Republican leadership will move in lockstep for once.

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Tue 18 Jun , 2019 8:14 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
Dear Leader formally announces his reelection campaign tonight at one of his lunatic, heavily stage-managed cult rallies in Orlando, Florida. Also in Orlando, today a newspaper presented its 2020 presidential endorsement - anyone but Trump:
https://www.orlandosentinel.com/opinion/editorials/os-op-sentinel-not-endorsing-donald-trump-2020-20190618-63ya7cyb5ngf3irllodwxnznui-story.html#
Quote:
Trump insults political opponents and national heroes alike with middle-school taunts. He demonstrates no capacity for empathy or remorse. He misuses his office to punish opponents, as when he recently called for a boycott of AT&T to get even with his least favorite media outlet, CNN. He tears down institutions, once airily suggesting the U.S. should try having a leader for life as China now allows. He seems incapable of learning a lesson, telling an ABC interviewer last week — just two months after Robert Mueller’s report on election interference was released — that he would accept dirt on an opponent from Russia or China.

I think we'll be seeing more of this. It's mind-boggling how far from the norm Trump has brought us.
(meanwhile Trump cultists are pretending it's not unusual for the editorial board of a major newspaper to essentially say "anyone but the current president, who's an ass.")


It also makes me think of this:
https://www.bottleyourbrand.com/bumper-sticker-any-functioning-adult-2020-7382


And this:
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/18/us/politics/michael-savage-trump.html
Michael Savage is a far right extremist. But he's having doubts about Trump, who hasn't done what Savage hoped he'd do, and his listeners aren't happy Savage is no longer uncritically endorsing Trump.
Quote:
During one program last month, a “lifetime listener” from San Francisco named Sharon told Mr. Savage as politely as she could that it was ridiculous for him ask his audience whether they harbored doubts about voting for the president in 2020. “I really like you,” she told the host, “but I’m wondering why you’re losing confidence in Donald Trump?”

Dave in North Carolina asked how anyone could blame Mr. Trump when he is fighting so many enemies at once. “He’s not just fighting Democrats. He’s fighting the deep state. He’s fighting the cabals,” he said. “Without him, we have nothing.”

Mr. Savage, 77, was surprised there wasn’t more second-guessing that day. “I don’t think they care very much about issues,” he said of his listeners, with a hint of disappointment. “They’ll vote for him no matter what because he’s not ‘them.’ I think it’s come down to ‘them’ or ‘us.’”
Supporting Trump has truly turned into a cult for some people.





https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/06/10/nobodys-asking-for-trump-to-be-a-genius/
Quote:
Nobody’s Asking for Trump to Be a Genius
But is it too much for him to at least show some foreign-policy common sense?



https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/06/17/trump-weighs-military-options-against-iran/
Quote:
Trump Weighs Military Options Against Iran
Officials are reportedly considering a proposal to send as many as 6,000 additional U.S. troops to the region.


And while Trump, Pompeo and Bolton try to march us toward war, the Pentagon remains understaffed:
https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/06/13/top-wmd-official-quietly-leaves-pentagon/
Quote:
Top WMD Official Quietly Leaves Pentagon
Guy Roberts’s abrupt departure in April comes amid a long exodus of senior officials under acting Secretary Patrick Shanahan.

Quote:
As Shanahan faces new rumblings that Trump may be reconsidering the decision to name him as Mattis’s permanent replacement, many of the Pentagon’s seniormost positions are still vacant or filled a temporary basis. The list includes the deputy secretary of defense, two out of seven undersecretaries of defense, and nearly half the assistant secretaries of defense—among them the top civilian for international security affairs.


https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/03/12/at-trumps-pentagon-empty-offices-are-the-new-normal-department-of-defense-mattis-resignation-vacancies-trump-administration-shanahan/
Quote:
At Trump’s Pentagon, Empty Offices Are the New Normal
The problem has worsened since James Mattis left the U.S. Defense Department.
Quote:
the vacancies at the Defense Department highlight a broader concern about how many posts sit empty in the Trump administration, over two years after the president first entered the White House. Only 429 of 712 key senior posts in the U.S. government that require presidential nomination and Senate confirmation are filled to date, according to the Washington Post and the Partnership for Public Service, a nonprofit group that analyzes governance issues.
I assume they couldn't find enough people willing to swear complete fealty to Trump, which seems to be a key requirement to work for him.


And another departure today:
https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/06/18/trump-top-russia-aide-national-security-council-fiona-hill-to-depart-europe-arms-control-moscow-putin-kremlin/
Quote:
Fiona Hill, U.S. President Donald Trump’s top Russia advisor, who is widely credited with trying to forge a tough approach to Moscow in an administration defined by Russia-tinged controversies, is expected to step down from her post at the National Security Council (NSC) in August. She has been in the job for nearly two and a half years.

...With Hill’s departure, the administration loses an experienced Russia hand widely respected by regional experts and policymakers on both sides of the aisle, a rarity in Trump’s hyperpoliticized Washington.
Foreign Policy talked to some people (including the very conservative Heritage Foundation) who seem to think that this means Trump is now going for an arms control agreement with Russia and China.

Based on everything Trump has done so far, I strongly suspect that's bullshit to try to get him re-elected.* Along with his promises for a wonderful new healthcare system, a cure to the issue of illegal immigration, an end to North Korea's nuclear ambitions, a peaceful Middle East, the return of manufacturing jobs to the US, and everything else. All he ever does is announce grand plans to fix everything in the world, muck it up by inserting his own idiotic ideas and refusing to listen to experts, and end up making a gigantic mess, worse than anything he started with.


*And or mask the real reason she's out, possibly that she's too tough on Putin and his corrupt oligarchs.



btw, Shanahan is out, after a background check raised questions about things in his family that he didn't want into the media. It seems somewhat bizarre that he didn't realize this would likely come out when he agreed to be nominated as permanent Secretary of Defense. It also makes me wonder if he was one of the Trump administration officials whose security clearance was denied, then overruled by the Trump political appointee.
https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/06/18/shanahan-out-as-pentagon-chief-as-reports-emerge-of-family-disputes/

What's likely to be more important than Shanahan's personal issues:
Quote:
With Shanahan out, Army Secretary Mark Esper, a former Army infantry officer and lobbyist for the defense firm Raytheon, will take over as acting secretary of defense, Trump wrote on Twitter.

Esper’s elevation to the Pentagon’s top job is another coup for the U.S. defense industry, whose influence in the Defense Department has only grown under Shanahan, a former senior Boeing executive. Raytheon is best known for manufacturing precision-guided weapons, including the bombs sold by the United States to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates and used in the war in Yemen.

...As acting secretary of defense, Esper will likely have influence over contracts that could go to Raytheon, as well as the controversial proposed merger of Raytheon and UTC to become the second-largest defense company in the United States, after Lockheed Martin, said Bookbinder.

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Fri 21 Jun , 2019 2:08 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-06-21/trump-approved-air-strikes-on-iran-then-pulled-back-nyt-says?srnd=premium
Quote:
President Donald Trump said he called off retaliatory strikes on three Iranian sites following the downing of a U.S. Navy drone because the action would not have been “proportionate.”

...A commander in the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps told a semi-official news agency Friday that the drone had been accompanied by a manned U.S. spy plane that Iranian forces decided not to target.

The planned U.S. attack, ordered after Iranian forces shot down a U.S. Navy drone over the Strait of Hormuz, would have involved airstrikes and was close to being carried out when it was stopped, said an administration official, who would not discuss whether the plan might still be revived.

...National Security Advisor John Bolton was pushing for the strike. Trump changed his mind based on some additional information, an official said. Iran was not given any warning of possible retaliation.
This may all be b.s. but someone who seems to be familiar with military matters said the type of drone (US UAV of the RQ-4A Global Hawk type) was a very expensive, high-flying surveillance drone that would almost certainly be used over a country's territory and not international waters. It would probably have headed for neutral territory once the operator realized it was targeted. (presumably it didn't make it that far because Iran claims it has pieces of the drone - if they're telling the truth.) The height at which these fly are supposed to make them difficult to shoot down, so there may be consternation at the Pentagon that Iran has that capability. Someone else criticized the military press conference for using Google maps to show the supposed flight path. They said the entire flight would have been monitored by GPS and saved, so there would be definitive evidence of where it was. Also that a transponder should have shown up on radar, unless it was turned off. He/she said that if the Pentagon is reluctant to release the actual flight data, the transponder was probably turned off, which is done during an illegal flyover into another country's airspace. At this point, it sounds to me like Iran is more likely to be telling the truth than the U.S. Why the media doesn't do some actual investigative reporting and dig into this sort of thing, I don't know, unless it's "patriotism."



This from the Bloomberg article is also interesting.
Quote:
The last time the U.S. launched a significant military effort against Iran was Operation Praying Mantis in 1988. In that operation, U.S. Navy ships sank two Iranian ships and destroyed two Iranian surveillance platforms.

The move came after the USS Samuel B. Roberts was damaged by a mine in the Persian Gulf.

Later that year, a U.S. Navy cruiser shot down an Iranian commercial aircraft on a scheduled flight in Iranian airspace, killing nearly 300 people.




And now we're inches from a war that could easily escalate to involve multiple countries, possibly even including Russia, simply because Trump hated Obama so much that he had to tear up the Iran nuclear agreement, which Iran was complying with and which was greatly slowing their ability to acquire nuclear weapons. And then Trump had to make things even worse with increasingly onerous sanctions (including restrictions on aid during 2019's catastrophic flooding in Iran) and to sabotage the other countries' attempts to save the Iran deal. And to declare Iran's entire military a terrorist organization, a move even the US military said was idiotic and dangerous.

This whole damn mess is the idiot-in-chief's fault, I don't care whether or not he was the one who called off the start of the war, at least temporarily. And anyone who thinks war with Iran would be as easy as invading Iraq is also a moron.
(There are also days when I feel like I'd like to send a good many Americans to actually live in a war zone for a while, when they glibly treat war like a video game or a movie, not a reality with prolonged misery, terror, death, and lasting destruction.)


https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2019/06/trump-military-congress-debate-how-read-intel-iran/591139/
Quote:
How to Navigate the Fog of War on Iran

The question of how to read U.S. intelligence on Iranian threats—and how to respond to them—is at the center of a debate over military escalation.
Quote:
Anyone who has spent the past month on edge about a potential military escalation between the United States and Iran might easily overlook a key fact: Nuclear weapons have not been the issue. U.S. officials such as Bolton and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo have framed the standoff instead around other types of Iranian activity—threats from Iran’s proxies against U.S. troops and personnel, purported attacks against shipping interests, and the transport of short-range ballistic missiles around the Persian Gulf.

Yet these are the kinds of things Iran has been doing for a long time, and to put the current threats into context, I spoke with people who have real-world experience in dealing with them. They come from different professional backgrounds and political persuasions but share the sense that a retaliatory U.S. military strike is possible—and depends in part on whether Iran and its proxies carry out acts that have long been their modus operandi.

In effect, the Trump administration has moved the red line for military escalation from the issue of nuclear weapons to a wide range of more commonplace Iranian activities...

This is where the fog of war has settled—on how to read and respond to long-running threats from Iran that fall outside the realm of nuclear activity. The Trump administration has cited U.S. intelligence reports to say that such threats are increasing; debate has ensued on what the intelligence really means. Navigating this murky realm of classified data and asymmetrical threats can’t be done in a vacuum and requires understanding the context of long and complicated regional rivalries...



https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2019/06/centcoms-general-mckenzie-steers-trumps-iran-policy/592171/
Quote:
Trump Might Not Want War, but the Military Is Steering His Iran Policy

The buildup in the Middle East is coming at the request of the forces responsible for the region.
Quote:
It’s been a little over a month since the U.S. kicked off a military buildup in the region in response to what officials called credible and imminent threats from Iran. On May 5, National Security Adviser John Bolton announced in a statement that a carrier strike group was headed to the region, and it came with a warning: “Any attack on United States interests or on those of our allies will be met with unrelenting force.” Though it was Bolton’s name on the statement, there was also someone else behind it: the new head of U.S. forces in the Middle East, General Kenneth McKenzie...

Since May, Bolton has served as an occasional spokesman for the administration’s Iran policy and is actively helping drive it behind the scenes. But lost in the focus on Bolton’s views was McKenzie’s role in helping shape the current policy. At a time when administration officials insist that they seek not war but diplomacy, America’s Iran policy is being steered to a large extent by the military.

McKenzie fills a vacuum at a moment when the Pentagon’s civilian leadership is either in temporary posts or in chaos, with multiple senior roles filled by acting officials, and one acting defense secretary just swapped out for another. And some see his prominent role as a cause for worry, even as other defense officials reportedly try to tamp down tensions. “He is shaping a public narrative around the Iran threat that is not a normal scenario for a combatant commander,” Kelly Magsamen, who worked with McKenzie as a senior defense official, told me. “I think it’s dangerous because this puts our military leadership in a scenario that’s highly political,” said Magsamen, who is now the vice president for national security and international policy at the Center for American Progress, a left-leaning think tank...



https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/05/the-iraq-war-was-a-failurewar-with-iran-would-be-worse/589534/
Quote:
Take It From an Iraq War Supporter—War With Iran Would Be a Disaster

It would mean repeating a mistake, only on a much bigger scale: without allies, without justification, and without any plan at all.
Quote:
The Iraq War of 2003 was undone by blithe assumptions, cultural ignorance, and careless planning. But compared with the accelerating drive to confront Iran, the Iraq War looks like a masterpiece of meticulous preparation.

The project of a war with Iran is so crazy, it remains incredible that Donald Trump’s administration could truly be premeditating it. But on the off, off chance that it is, here’s a word of caution from a veteran of the George W. Bush administration: Don’t do it...







And Trump is apparently very pleased with himself, according to a New York Times correspondent at the White House:
https://twitter.com/maggienyt/status/1142058595598700544?s=21#
Quote:
Maggie Haberman on Twitter: "A source told me 30 minutes ago that Trump was pleased with his own performance last night, loved being in command by ordering the strikes and by then ordering the stand-down. ...

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Fri 21 Jun , 2019 10:08 pm 
Aspiring to heresy
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I just gotta say that the actors who portray Jim Anchorton and Jill Newslady are really brave.



And really funny :D

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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Mon 24 Jun , 2019 3:48 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
Kushner's grand peace plan for Israel and the Palestinians, so far, seems to be....



...give them all some money, pretend there are no political issues, and the problems will go away. I suppose it's not surprising, coming from a bunch of out-of-touch billionaires.

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/06/israel-backs-palestinians-react-kushner-plan-190623191830426.html
Quote:
When the document was released, many noticed that the 40-page plan was void of any political context with the words "occupation", "freedom", "equality", "blockade" missing.

...At the heart of the plan is a proposed $50bn investment fund which would be split between Palestinians in the occupied territories (more than half of the total amount) and its neighbours Egypt, Lebanon and Jordan.

The fund will be used for 179 infrastructure and business projects, including building up the Palestinians' tourism sector.

However, it doesn't address the obstacles to freedom of movement that Palestinians face, living under the 12-year Israeli-Egyptian blockade on the Gaza Strip, or under occupation in the West Bank, surrounded by illegal Israeli settlements, deeming it a non-starter for many across the board.


https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/06/led-bahrain-workshop-palestine-latest-updates-190624092422392.html
Quote:
US-led Bahrain meeting on Palestine: All the latest updates

Officials to gather for so-called 'Peace to Prosperity' workshop, the economic part of Trump's 'deal of the century'.



Some of those issues Trump, Kushner et al are ignoring:
https://www.euronews.com/2019/05/09/daily-life-in-hebron-shows-why-west-bank-peace-is-far-away
Quote:
Hebron's silent war: no peace in sight for Israelis and Palestinians
Quote:
Hebron is the largest Palestinian city in the West Bank. The only one where Israeli settlements are inside the city itself. Hebron has been split in two since 1997. 80% of the city is under Palestinian control; the remaining 20% —also called H2— is administered by Israel. 40,000 Palestinians live in H2 among 800 settlers. The close proximity between the two communities creates frictions on a daily basis.

...Achiya Schatz is a former sergeant in the Israeli army, now member of Breaking the Silence, an Israeli organisation of veterans exposing the harsh reality of daily life in the Palestinian territories.

"The 1929 massacre was a massacre in which 67 Jews were killed,” he says. “The 1994 massacre was a settler coming in shooting and killing 29 Palestinians praying inside the Mosque. But the '29 massacre is now feeding the narrative of the settlers’ movement, saying like Jews were killed here, we are Jews, we are allowed to do whatever we want inside this place. The ‘94 massacre' shaped the reality of the Palestinians here."

..."All the purple areas are territories where Palestinians are not allowed to drive,” says Schatz, pointing to a map of the city. “All the stripy areas is where Palestinians are not allowed to open shops. And all the red areas is what we call ‘sterile zones’, territories where Palestinians are not allowed to walk even.”

We walked into the sterile zone. The main street, called Shuhada street, was once a bustling Palestinian market area in the heart of the old centre. It’s now completely deserted....

...Over 1,800 businesses were closed in the city centre. Front doors welded down, no matter whether Palestinians were still living there. Only five families have stayed, challenging curfews, violence and harassment.

"I still receive stones,” says a resident... The settlers stand up there and throw stones at the house...Another of the last Palestinian residents on Shuhada street complains about settlers' attacks and the army's random night incursions. He also told us Israel has been tightening its grip on Palestinian residents to force them out of the area...



https://www.crisisgroup.org/middle-east-north-africa/eastern-mediterranean/israelpalestine/202-reversing-israels-deepening-annexation-occupied-east-jerusalem
Quote:
Israel is pursuing new ways of cementing its grip on occupied East Jerusalem, further enmeshing the city’s Palestinians while maintaining a Jewish majority within the municipal boundaries....

What’s new? Israel is advancing new policies to entrench its de facto annexation of most of occupied East Jerusalem. Moreover, depending on what coalition government emerges from forthcoming parliamentary elections, it could shunt the city’s Palestinian areas lying east of the separation barrier into disconnected Israeli administrative units outside the municipality’s jurisdiction.

Why did it happen? Israeli decision-makers are concerned that Jerusalem will soon have a non-Jewish majority. The Netanyahu government has conceded that its neglect of East Jerusalem has failed to induce Palestinians to leave. Instead, neglect has bred crime and violence, and created numerous lawless areas, particularly east of the barrier....
Quote:
...The most widely supported excision proposal would leave Palestinians with status as residents of Israel in excised areas (there are also Palestinian citizens of Israel in these areas). Palestinians fear that this step would be the prelude to revocation of their residency – without which they cannot enter East Jerusalem or Israel. Other excision proposals call for rescinding the residency status of excised areas’ inhabitants.

Excising Palestinian-inhabited areas in order to forestall the loss of a Jewish demographic majority in the city could set a dangerous precedent, offering a model for how Israel could annex large parts of the West Bank while shunting Palestinian residents into separate Israeli administrative units, where they might have residency but not citizenship. Excision would also deepen poverty, chaos and militancy in the most forsaken corners of the city. An excision plan could go into effect shortly after a new coalition government takes its seats following the 17 September Knesset election, depending on its composition...




https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/jun/20/a-jerusalem-hospital-where-palestinian-babies-die-alone
Quote:
A Jerusalem hospital where Palestinian babies die alone

Israeli blockade on Gaza means parents are separated from critically ill children
Quote:
Israel allows temporary exit from Gaza for medical reasons in some cases, but not all. At the same time, it prevents or seriously delays many parents of patients from leaving, and others never apply in the first place, fearing that extensive security checks for adults will hold up their child’s exit permit and lose vital time.

Since the beginning of last year, 56 babies from Gaza were separated from their mothers and fathers, six of whom perished without a parent present, according to the hospital...

Physicians for Human Rights-Israel, an Israeli medical non-profit, said more than 7,000 permits were issued for minors from Gaza last year. Less than 2,000 permits for parents were granted, suggesting most children travelled without their mothers and fathers. ...

Separating sick infants from their parents can have devastating impacts. Doctors believed one of the triplets who died when their mother was in Gaza had a condition for which one of the best preventative steps is breastfeeding. “I wouldn’t say that if the mother was there, they wouldn’t get it, but it would decrease the chances,” said Hatem Khammash, the head of the neonatal unit....

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Mon 24 Jun , 2019 4:49 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
On a more trivial note, Dear Leader is putting on a big show this 4th of July:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-06-19/trump-remakes-july-fourth-to-include-himself-military-display
Quote:
Donald Trump’s revamped Fourth of July celebration on the National Mall will include a presidential address from the Lincoln Memorial and a military display with plane flyovers and demonstrations by all five branches of the armed services.

...Trump will be the first president to address the nation on Independence Day from the Mall in recent memory.[NB: because previous presidents had the sense to stay away and let people ignore politics to celebrate the day with their neighbors of all political persuasions]

...Washington’s mayor, Muriel Bowser, told the Washington Post that the president’s attendance and re-positioning of the fireworks could create security and logistical concerns.

“If we have to put more police to cover his movements, more police for the fireworks and an additional location for police where the fireworks are going to get set off, that puts a strain on us,” Bowser said.

It is unclear how much the changes will cost the federal and local governments...



If you can stomach listening to Trump and the expected proliferation of MAGA hats and displays of military might that day, some donors have provided enough money that Trump can say his fireworks display was the biggest:
https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/450018-park-service-expects-trumps-4th-of-july-salute-to-america-to-be
Quote:
Park Service: Trump's 4th of July event to be 'biggest fireworks show that DC has seen'
Quote:
“We are expanding access to great areas of the National Mall that have been closed for years [NB: for safety reasons, because that's where the fireworks were set off in previous years.] We received an extraordinary donation for a phenomenal fireworks display, and our colleagues from the Department of Defense will be providing a one-of-a-kind music and air power experience,” Interior Secretary David Bernhardt told the news outlet.
I love how the Park Service is also feeding Trump's ego these days with announcements about the biggest and the best.





btw, the mass ICE raids to remove people who received their final deportation orders have supposedly been "delayed." Not surprising, as the whole thing was probably just a gigantic poorly-conceived propaganda piece for Trump supporters and/or an effort to scare people. Sure, if your asylum claim has been denied, you should leave. But pre-dawn raids, like some dictatorship, where people are suddenly torn from their surroundings without adequate warning to get their affairs in order? Mass deportations, at what enormous cost and strained logistical support, for a show? I suspect the media coverage would have backfired tremendously on this administration and someone had the brains to see that. Deliberate cruelty, with weeping families, doesn't usually play well with normal people.

And anyone with a brain already knew Trump's claim that "millions" would be deported was nonsense. Too many business rely heavily on illegal immigrants. They can pay them far less and know they won't complain about things a legal resident or citizen might report.

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Tue 25 Jun , 2019 3:24 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/06/architects-plan-middle-east-peace-190624182330043.html
Quote:
The architects behind the US plan for Middle East peace

Jared Kushner, David Friedman, Jason Greenblatt in charge of US-Middle East peace plan despite no political experience.
Quote:
There are at least three things that Jared Kushner, David Friedman and Jason Greenblatt all have in common. One is that they are all Orthodox Jews, and another is that prior to their appointment as officials in the Trump administration, all three men had no prior political or diplomatic experience.

The third is that this triad has connections to Israel, or more specifically, to the illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank.

Both Friedman and Kushner, through a family charity, have for years donated to the hardline Bet Il settlement, located on land belonging to the Ramallah area. Greenblatt studied at a yeshiva during the 1980s at a settlement bloc near Jerusalem, where he also guarded it with an M-16 assault rifle...

The Kushner family regards Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a family friend, who during trips to the United States would visit their home. ..

Supposedly, "part II" of their peace plan will come out at some unknown future date. Some people are guessing that the economic part is designed to bribe Egypt, Jordan and Lebanon to accept unpalatable provisions for the Palestinians in the yet-to-be-announced part II. I wouldn't be surprised at all if that's true.



https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/06/trump-imposes-sanctions-iran-targets-supreme-leader-190624161044665.html
Quote:
US President Donald Trump signed an order on Monday that targets Iran's supreme leader and associates with additional financial sanctions... "Sanctions imposed through the executive order ... will deny the supreme leader and the supreme leader's office, and those closely affiliated with him and the office, access to key financial resources and support," Trump said.

Al Jazeera's Dorsa Jabbari, reporting from Tehran, said the decision to sanction the supreme leader would likely not have much effect. "Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has not left Iran in over 30 years since he was president in 1989. The last time he left Iran was on a state visit to China in April 1989," she said.
Well, I suppose stupid stuff is preferable to Trump playing soldiers with real lives, though insults have their consequences in politics too.



Oh, and the EPA is finding even better ways to hide its shady collaborations with the oil and mining industries from the people of the US:
https://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/450169-new-epa-rule-would-expand-trump-officials-power-to-reject-foia-requests
Quote:
Political appointees at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will soon have the authority to reject public information requests without explanation...The rule is expected to be published in the Federal Register as early as Wednesday and will not allow for a public comment period.

...The blanket explanation for non-responsive materials may also make it harder for groups or individuals to legally challenge any of EPA’s decisions to withhold documents, because it will be more difficult to prove they were withheld unlawfully. A person appealing their FOIA response would not know if any documents were withheld under a “no records” response.

“It’s exceptionally difficult to litigate on the ‘basis of responsiveness.’ There is no record,” said Kevin Bell, staff counsel at Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility.
Quote:
Bell equated EPA’s new FOIA rule to a similar regulatory action unveiled earlier this year at the Interior Department, called an “awareness review,” which allows political appointees 72 hours to review documents that mention them by name prior to release.




https://thehill.com/latino/450157-border-patrol-turning-away-donations-of-diapers-toys-report
Quote:
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is turning away donations of toys, soap, toothbrushes, diapers and medicine for migrant children housed at the border, the Texas Tribune reported Monday....

Individuals, advocacy groups and lawmakers on either side of the aisle have all reached out to Border Patrol following wide-reaching reports that facilities have been overwhelmed in recent months by migrants, with some children allegedly being held without proper access to food, water or sanitation...
There's no explanation for why they refuse to accept anyone's donations for the children.


.And it gets better. After moving all the kids out of the facility where squalid and inhumane conditions had been revealed...

...they moved many of them back again.
https://www.latimes.com/nation/nationnow/la-na-detained-migrant-children-moved-20190625-story.html
Quote:
Tuesday, a Customs and Border Protection official confirmed that 127 of the migrant children transferred from the Clint station were subsequently moved back.

When asked why the children had been returned, the official said it was "because the numbers have been reduced,” and the Health and Human Services Department’s Office of Refugee Resettlement “was able to take a number of them."

There was no word on whether additional improvements had been made to the facility in response to the reported conditions.


This is also sick:
Quote:
Customs and Border Protection has confirmed that when children arrive at the border with a relative other than a parent, they are separated and considered unaccompanied. Such cases are categorized as “family relationship in question” and not separately tracked, the agency said.

What a stain on the U.S. the Trump administration is. It's very simple - if you decide you want people to remain in a camp while their asylum claims are judged (though it's another story whether that's even practical for the ridiculous time it takes), you make sure you can provide humane, decent conditions for them to live. And you don't separate children from their relatives, period. If you shroud the facilities in secrecy to hide the conditions, it's pretty clear that there's something seriously wrong with them, whether or not someone eventually gets in to find that children are trying to take care of each other because no one else is doing it.

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Wed 26 Jun , 2019 6:21 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
The Atlantic interviewed one of the lawyers who interviewed the mistreated children. None of this is surprising, given what we've already heard, but it's stark.
https://www.theatlantic.com/family/archive/2019/06/child-detention-centers-immigration-attorney-interview/592540/
A few quotes:
Quote:
The food at Clint is rationed on trays. Everyone gets an identical tray regardless of if you’re a 1-year-old, or you’re a 17-year-old, or a breastfeeding teenage mother who has higher caloric needs. The same food is served every single day, and none of the children receive any fruit and vegetables or any milk.
Quote:
When I interview children in detention, I try to sit near them so that we can have a better conversation about very traumatic, sensitive, difficult topics. Usually that leaves the children crying. At Clint, I found that hard to do because there was a stench emanating from some of the children.
Quote:
We were only permitted to make phone calls to the children [in medical quarantine, where this group was not given permission to view the site or visit the children] and there was a guard hovering, listening to what the children were saying on the other end of the line when they spoke to us by phone.
Quote:
Many of the children I spoke with have not been permitted to make a single phone call to any of their family members or loved ones since crossing the border.Everyone who we interviewed, and I anticipate nearly every child who was detained at Clint, has family members in the United States
Quote:
In Clint last week, every child who we interviewed had crossed the border with an adult family member, whether it was a parent or an older sibling or an aunt or a grandmother. Every one of those family units was torn apart by the government.


And for this type of "care," taxpayers are spending an average of $300-700/ day per person, according to some reports. I'm glad to see that the House has passed an additional spending bill for humanitarian aid (though Trump already plans to veto it, if it ever makes it past Senate shenanigans). But I'm wondering if that, too, will just drop into whatever black hole swallowed the money that should have been spent on food, shelter, other necessities and caregivers.

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Fri 28 Jun , 2019 9:27 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/06/house-passes-senate-border-aid-bill-sends-trump-sign-190627204404481.html
Quote:
The United States House of Representatives passed the Senate version of a $4.6bn emergency border aid bill on Thursday after the country's top Democrat "reluctantly" urged her caucus to vote for the measure. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi reversed course on Thursday, abandoning her effort to negotiate a compromise bill with Trump administration officials and the Senate that that included stronger restrictions on how the Trump administration could spend the money and additional migrant protections.

...House approval of the funding without the conditions sought by critics of President Donald Trump's controversial zero-tolerance policy on the US-Mexico border gives the US president a legislative win.


...Pelosi had argued for four revisions to the legislation sought by liberal members of her Democrat caucus and designed to improve the care for migrant children being held at the southwest US border.

"For the children, we must have a higher standard of medical attention for them as well as their hygiene and nutrition as well as the training of the personnel who address their needs," Pelosi said earlier on Thursday.

Democrats wanted to limit the time a child can be held in so-called "influx centres" by border patrol to 90 days "so they can safely be placed with family". They also wanted private contractors who operate detention centres to lose their contracts after six months if they fail to uphold federal standards.

Democrats called for faith-based and non-governmental organisations, local and state governments to be reimbursed by the federal government for their efforts. Finally, Democrats were seeking a pilot programme to establish an interagency migrant processing centre that would work with outside groups to create a better environment for families held on the border.

Quote:
The Trump administration offered to handle Pelosi's demands by administrative action in exchange for quick action on the Senate bill, McConnell said.
Does Pelosi really believe this will happen? Because she's negotiating with a perpetual liar and conman and I'll be very surprised if it does. I assume she's smart enough to know that too.



btw, Trump and Putin were having a great time at the G20 conference, with Trump joking about Russian interference in the 2016 election(something that would have resulted in Republicans having an absolute fit at one time, but seems to be perfectly fine when done by Trump). Someone commented that these two seem surprisingly close buddies considering how rarely they've met in public. Makes you wonder how often they talk on the phone.
https://time.com/5616919/trump-vladimir-putin-g20-election-interference/
Quote:
With a smirk and a finger point, President Donald Trump dryly told Russia’s Vladimir Putin “Don’t meddle with the election” in their first meeting since the special counsel concluded that Russia extensively interfered with the 2016 campaign.

The tone of the president’s comment, which came after a reporter asked if he would warn Putin, was immediately open to interpretation.
Reminds me of some teenage boy messing around with his buddy after being admonished by an adult. At least they didn't both break into barely-suppressed laughter and snorts (Putin did laugh openly, though).



Putin also praised Trump's policies on immigration:
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/06/putin-derides-liberalism-obsolete-g20-summit-190628052108100.html
Quote:
In a wide-ranging interview with the Financial Times published late on Thursday, Putin trumpeted the rise of populist movements in Europe and the United States and said Russia's Western partners had "admitted that some elements of the liberal idea, such as multiculturalism, are no longer tenable".

...The Russian president heaped praise on his American counterpart, Donald Trump, however, calling him a "talented person" before lauding the US leader for his efforts to stem the number of migrants entering the country from neighbouring Mexico.

Of course Putin approves of the mess Trump has made. Does anyone seriously believe he has the US's best interests in mind? He must be laughing his head off, these days, at the chaos Trump has created. I expect Putin had his hand in some of it, too - he's smart enough to know just how to manipulate that idiot.


And apparently we're in a trade war with India too. Pretty soon, it'll be easier to list the countries we're NOT having trade wars with, than the ones we are. Dear Leader reminds me of a toddler who has learned to do one thing and proudly does it over and over, no matter the occasion.
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/06/trump-demands-withdrawal-india-unacceptable-tariff-hike-190627065326869.html
Quote:
US President Donald Trump has demanded India withdraw retaliatory tariffs imposed this month, calling the duties "unacceptable" in a stern message that signals trade ties between the two countries are fast deteriorating.

India slapped higher duties on 28 US products after the United States withdrew tariff-free entry for certain Indian goods. Washington is also upset with New Delhi's plans to restrict cross-border data flows and impose stricter rules on e-commerce that hurt US firms operating in India.

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Mon 01 Jul , 2019 5:12 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
This captures Trump's America so well - put a bunch of tanks in the middle of a celebration.
https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/451133-trump-continues-push-for-tanks-for-on-national-mall-for-july-fourth
Quote:
President Trump is reportedly still pushing for tanks to be part of the Fourth of July “Salute to America” event on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., this week.

The Washington Post reports Trump has requested to station tanks or other armored military vehicles near or on the green space located in the center of the city.
We already know, from Trump's first attempts to bring tanks to DC for a show, that the logistics are difficult, the whole damn idea is expensive, and tanks will tear up the roadways, leaving DC to deal with the cost.

http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/07/everything-we-know-about-trumps-july-4th-event.html
Quote:
Will there be protests?

You know it. Though it won’t be easy for detractors to make themselves seen. Late last week, officials announced a VIP section in front of the Lincoln Memorial. Free tickets to access the area will be distributed by the White House, ensuring that protesters won’t be able to pack the area in front of Trump’s podium.

Of course, that won’t stop protesters from coming out. The National Park Service has granted Code Pink permission to fly a “Baby Trump” float during the event. And the havoc Trump’s event is wreaking on D.C. residents might persuade a few more to come out and protest. The Arlington Memorial Bridge will be closed, Reagan National Airport will be closed for 75 minutes, and parks and waterways will be shut down.






btw, if anyone is still wondering why would-be immigrants are not mostly applying for asylum at border crossings, it seems that Trump's DHS is preventing them. And the situation is getting worse.
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/jul/01/migrants-us-mexico-border-rio-grande-numbers
Quote:
Nowadays at Matamoros, like at other main border crossings, an American official will call across the bridge and tell their Mexican counterparts how many migrants the Americans are willing to interview for asylum that day, and in what form – families, or single men or women – in a process known as metering. How the Americans choose that number is anyone’s guess, people say. The Mexican official in charge of the lists then calls out a person’s number. For those chosen, it’s like winning a lottery. But the reasoning behind the Mexican process is even more of an enigma.

In the past several weeks, as more and more migrants arrive, the number of people called has dwindled to just four or five a week – coinciding with Donald Trump’s threat to impose tariffs if Mexico did not control the surge of migrants. On Friday, since Sunday, there had been zero people called. For those camped out, waiting to enter the country legally, some for as long as four months, the numbers and how they are chosen have become a kind of obsession, as if a divine hand is orchestrating this random and maddening system....

A few things are certain with the lists, people say. Women and children traveling alone will always go before families with fathers attached. Knowing this, fathers have been registering separately from their wives and children in hopes they’ll get called and their wives can find work...



I also saw an article the other day that explains why so many people are leaving Honduras now:
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/06/ten-years-coup-hondurans-flee-violence-repression-190628150952496.html
Quote:
Friday marks the anniversary of the June 28, 2009 coup d'etat that set in motion a decade of political crises, violence, mass protests, militarisation and repression. Ten years later, the government of President Juan Orlando Hernandez has instituted a crackdown on protesters, and Hondurans continue to flee by the thousands every month.



https://thehill.com/latino/451134-agents-feared-riots-over-poor-conditions-at-border-station-report
Quote:
Border agents feared riots over poor conditions at an El Paso, Texas, border station as far back as May, according to a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) inspector general report shared with The Hill Monday.

Inspectors noted during a May 7 tour of the station, the name of which is redacted in the report, that only four showers were available for 756 immigrants, over half of which were being held in tents outside the facility.

Those being held inside were kept in cells that were maxed at over five times their intended capacity, according to reports...Agents reported taking sick migrants to the hospital five times a day, treating 75 immigrants for lice in a day and trying to quarantine outbreaks of flu and the chickenpox
.


And we don't hear much these days about the migrants who have been sent to actual prisons to live among criminals, as a form of housing while they wait. (where I wouldn't be surprised if the decent men are victimized and the crooked or weak/ desperate ones find new American criminal associates).



https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/451075-federal-judge-orders-cbp-to-let-doctor-into-border-facilities
Quote:
A federal judge has ordered U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to allow medical professionals into detention facilities holding migrant children, CNN reported Sunday.

U.S. District Judge Dolly Gee ordered that health professionals be allowed in the facilities to ensure the conditions are "safe and sanitary" for children being detained there and to assess the children's medical needs.

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Tue 02 Jul , 2019 1:24 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
https://thehill.com/homenews/state-watch/451294-dc-council-rips-trump-july-fourth-plans-tanks-but-no-tanks
Quote:
The Washington, D.C., City Council on Monday ripped President Trump's Independence Day plans, joking about his intention to have military tanks on display when he gives a speech from the Lincoln Memorial.

"We have said it before, and we’ll say it again: Tanks, but no tanks,"...

The council included an image of a memorandum in its tweet from the Office of the Secretary of Defense with the line "[i]nclude wheeled vehicles only, no tanks" highlighted.



https://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/451282-report-two-tanks-in-dc-as-trump-calls-for-military-hardware-in
Quote:
At least two tanks have reportedly arrived in Washington, D.C. days after President Trump called for an Independence Day celebration involving military hardware.

The M1A1 tanks are alongside four other military vehicles on a freight train in the city, The Associated Press reported, citing an AP photographer.


I may have a different perspective on things than many Americans but tanks are what dictators use to control their people when they try to rebel (see, for instance, the former Soviet Union) and IMO have NO place in a celebration of a former colony winning its independence.



https://thehill.com/policy/defense/451480-military-tells-dc-residents-dont-panic-at-seeing-tanks-on-the-streets
Quote:
The U.S. Army is warning Washington, D.C., residents not to panic if they see tanks and armored personnel carriers (APC) in their neighborhoods this week, WUSA9 reports.



https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/451462-park-service-to-divert-25-million-for-trumps-july-4-event-report
Quote:
The National Park Service has reportedly been directed to divert nearly $2.5 million in funding to the Washington, D.C., "Salute to America" event planned by President Trump for the Fourth of July.

The funding, originally intended for upkeep and maintenance in the nation's national park system...

The figure transferred from the Park Service is reportedly a fraction of the total cost of this year's event, which will also feature appearances by the Annapolis-based Blue Angels and a B-2 bomber. It has already vastly outpaced the total cost the Park Service has spent in past years on the annual July Fourth celebration, which an official told the Post usually reaches about $2 million per year.


At one time, Trump was also claiming that on the 4th of July weekend ICE would start rounding up people who are in the country illegally (unlikely). A perfect day for Dear Leader - displays of military might, exercising his personal power to get a big show and damn the expense to us peons, himself in the spotlight with only adoring sycophants allowed in front of the stage, flights cancelled, waterways and roads closed in case you might want to do something other than his official celebration... (some of the closures don't normally happen, but Trump ordered some things changed so now even the fireworks site is too close to the airport)

It's relatively trivial compared to some of the things he's done. And yet it isn't. He overrode advice from the military and ordered the tanks brought in for no useful purpose. He overrode the wishes of the city officials where the display will be held. He ignored the expense to taxpayers and the diversions from other programs that benefit us directly. This is not someone serving as president but someone who wants to rule.


And if people packed for a week in rooms where they can't lie down to sleep doesn't bring echoes of the conditions in concentration camps, I don't know what will. This is a report from an official government investigating agency. The second report suggests, to me at least, that ICE tried to put on a show of some women being held in better conditions for visitors, but the women didn't cooperate. I wouldn't be at all surprised if the newly introduced sleeping bags disappeared after the visit.

https://thehill.com/latino/451414-dhs-watchdog-finds-dangerous-overcrowding-prolonged-detention-at-rio-grande-border
Quote:
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Inspector General's Office found "dangerous overcrowding" and prolonged detention of children and adults at facilities in the Rio Grande Valley, the agency watchdog revealed Tuesday.

..Photos included in the report show migrants at the facilities crowded behind fences and sleeping on the floor with aluminum blankets.

Roughly 8,000 immigrants were being held at the five Border Patrol facilities visited by the watchdog, 3,400 of which had been held longer than the 72 hours generally permitted under Customs and Border Protection standards.

...Children at three of the five facilities had no access to showers and limited access to a change of clothes.

They were also not provided hot meals, another requirement under CBP standards.

Some adults at the facilities were held in standing room only conditions for a week.
Quote:
Tuesday's report follows a similar one by the department OIG about conditions at El Paso facilities from May, which was made public Monday.

That came after Acting DHS Secretary Kevin McAleenan said last week that reports of poor conditions for children at a border station in the El Paso sector were "unsubstantiated."



Another interview:
https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2019/07/democrats-visit-texas-detention-centers/593191/
Quote:
Haunting.

Several U.S. lawmakers have used the word to describe what they saw during a visit to two Border Patrol processing centers in Texas on Monday, where they say they communicated with detained children through thick glass walls and met sobbing women who lacked access to running water.

“Nothing prepares you for the inhumanity of it,” Representative Madeleine Dean of Pennsylvania told me by phone on Tuesday. Dean, a freshman Democrat and a former lawyer and professor from the Philadelphia area, was part of a crew of 14 Democratic lawmakers who visited the facilities in El Paso and Clint. ...
Quote:
Everybody was crying. One woman, 58 years old, clearly the eldest in this grouping, kept sobbing and sobbing, saying, I don’t know where my daughter is; she’s 23 years old; we were separated. Another woman seated next to her said, Two days ago, my 18-year-old daughter and I were separated from the tents; I don’t know where my daughter is. I asked the guard if they could guarantee me that they would find out exactly where these daughters are and if they would facilitate communication. He said, I know exactly where they are; I already told her—just that kind of flippant information.



https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2019/07/border-patrols-oversight-sick-migrant-children/593224/
Quote:
What a Pediatrician Saw Inside a Border Patrol Warehouse

Dolly Lucio Sevier evaluated dozens of sick children at a facility in South Texas. She found evidence of infection, malnutrition, and psychological trauma.
Quote:
Sevier set up a makeshift clinic—stethoscope, thermometer, blood-pressure cuffs—in a room, lined with computer stations, that agents use for paperwork. Each of the agent stations had its own bottle of hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes. But when Sevier asked the 38 children she examined that day about sanitation, they all said they weren't allowed to wash their hands or brush their teeth. This was “tantamount to intentionally causing the spread of disease,” she later wrote in a medical declaration about the visit, the document that the lawyers filed in federal court and also shared with me.
Quote:
Sevier ... asked to see a 2-year-old from Honduras along with his teenage brother, who she hoped could provide the baby’s medical history. The older boy was excited because officials had kept them separate for more than two weeks. But when the guards brought the toddler over from the “day care” where the littlest detainees are held, he stared with wide eyes, Sevier recalled, and began panting heavily, hoarsely, and persistently for the rest of the encounter.

...At Ursula... the children Sevier examined—like the panting 2-year-old—were “totally fearful, but then entirely subdued,” she told me. She could read the fear in their faces, but they were perfectly submissive to her authority. “I can only explain it by trauma, because that is such an unusual behavior,” she said.





btw, if anyone wants to see how Trump's grasp on reality is slipping, look up the videos of some of his recent interviews overseas. He apparently thought busing (as discussed in the Democratic debates) was some sort of new issue and said his administration would have a plan to solve it in a few weeks, thought Putin was criticizing liberals when he was criticizing western democracies, said the federal government might take control where cities were not controlling the homeless population...


Edited to add a pediatrician's visit to a border patrol facility (not the one in Clint).

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


Last edited by aninkling on Wed 03 Jul , 2019 8:07 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Wed 03 Jul , 2019 3:21 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
It seems Trump won't have to pardon this piece of scum, after all:
https://thehill.com/policy/defense/451440-jury-finds-navy-seal-eddie-gallagher-not-guilty-in-war-crimes-case
Quote:
Navy SEAL Edward Gallagher was found not guilty of murder and attempted murder in a military court Tuesday following a trial centering around the killing of an ISIS militant, according to multiple reports.

...An Iraqi general told the court that Gallagher did not stab the teenager and Marine Staff Sgt. Giorgio Kirylo said he did not see any stab wounds on the fighter, according to NBC News.

In closing arguments, the prosecution presented pictures of Gallagher holding the teen's head by his hair texts from Gallagher saying, "I've got a cool story for you when I get back. I've got my knife skills on." and "Good story behind this. Got him with my hunting knife."

... Gallagher was found guilty on the single charge of posing with the corpse of the ISIS fighter
Apparently the medic (who had been given immunity) suddenly changed his testimony during the trial (threats from Gallagher's buddies?) and testified that he choked the young man to death through a breathing tube and he didn't die of his stab wounds, though he didn't dispute that he was stabbed. Just try being a civilian and stabbing someone in the neck (but hey, he died of a heart attack and not directly of the wound, your honor, so it's not my fault), shooting innocent civilians as target practice, and threatening the people who reported you, and getting called innocent. This is contemptible and an utter disgrace to the US. Though probably not a surprise. It's not the first time we've seen the military protect their own. Despite evidence from the 12 Navy Seals who turned Gallagher in.


Trump's reaction to the verdict?
https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/451522-trump-congratulates-navy-seal-found-not-guilty-of-war-crimes-glad-i
Quote:
President Trump on Wednesday congratulated Eddie Gallagher after the Navy SEAL was found not guilty of the murder of an ISIS captive and of attempted murder of Iraqi civilians in a closely watched war-crimes trial.

“Congratulations to Navy Seal Eddie Gallagher, his wonderful wife Andrea, and his entire family. You have been through much together. Glad I could help!” Trump tweeted.

Trump is either a dotard or utterly corrupt for celebrating this miscarriage of justice, but as far as his "help" he was probably just referring to when he ordered Gallagher freed from pre-trial custody. Though I wouldn't be surprised if that made a difference to the outcome, given that Gallagher was now free to influence witnesses. There's a reason military prosecutors thought Gallagher shouldn't be free before his trial.

https://www.businessinsider.com/trump-congratulates-navy-seal-found-innocent-of-murder-2019-7
Quote:
Gallagher's defense attorney told Business Insider that the president's decision to get involved and ease Gallagher's pretrial confinement "made all the difference in the world."

Gallagher was arrested in September over allegations of intimidating witnesses and obstruction of justice, and he was detained at San Diego's Naval Consolidated Brig Miramar. He was officially charged with premeditated murder, among other crimes, in January.

In late March, he was moved from the brig at Miramar to a facility at Balboa Naval Medical Center after a tweet by Trump.
According to another report, he was subsequently allowed to go free until the trial.


I also noted with cynicism that The Hill's article says Gallagher "shot at" civilians. "Shot at" implies he could have missed. Like the young girl walking with her friends who Gallagher shot in the stomach and was dragged away by her friends? Did she even survive? Or the old man? And if there were 2 that people witnessed, no doubt there were others.


FYI, more on the case:
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/26/us/corey-scott-edward-gallagher-navy-seal.html
Quote:
When a Navy SEAL witness testified in a war-crimes trial last week that he, and not the defendant, had killed a captive ISIS fighter, the courtroom was stunned. Now the witness may face court-martial himself, on a charge of perjury.

...Special Operator Scott testified Thursday [that]... the chief pulled out a custom hunting knife and, without explanation, stabbed the sedated captive between the neck and collar bone. ...[However] On the witness stand, Special Operator Scott minimized the stabbing, saying the chief had stabbed the captive only once, that there was no blood coming from the wound afterward and that the stab wound was not life-threatening. He testified that after the stabbing, the captive was still in stable condition, but that he then placed his thumb over the captive’s breathing tube, asphyxiating him.

A Navy prosecutor immediately leapt from his chair in the courtroom and angrily accused Special Operator Scott of lying, saying that on one crucial point after another, his testimony contradicted what he had told Navy criminal investigators and lawyers in at least five interviews.

Special Operator Scott, who made eye contact with Chief Gallagher and with Timothy Parlatore, the chief’s defense lawyer, several times during his testimony.. [and] said he had never told investigators that he killed the captive because no one had bothered to ask.

...Navy investigative documents obtained by The New York Times show that investigators had asked Special Operator Scott a number of times, in the presence of other agents and lawyers, to detail the cause of the captive’s death.

...The medic’s testimony in court appeared to conflict with all of those statements, as well as with photos offered in evidence at the trial that show a pool of blood on the ground by the victim.

Before Special Operator Scott’s testimony, a succession of other SEALs took the stand to describe the morning in May 2017 when the wounded teenage fighter was brought in. Special Operations Chief Craig Miller testified that he saw Chief Gallagher take out a custom-made knife and stab the captive two or three times.

... Members of the platoon who reported Chief Gallagher’s actions to superiors more than a year ago say they have come under heavy pressure since then over breaking a widespread culture of silence in the secretive, tight-knit SEAL teams. In court, some of the SEALs said they had received threats and had begun carrying weapons for self-defense....


And the 2 witnesses for the defense don't even tell the same story. One says Gallagher had a knife at one point but this witness (Gallagher's roommate) was conveniently absent at crucial points and doesn't recall anyone being stabbed. The other witness, whose platoon has been accused of war crimes, said Gallagher never pulled out a knife.

https://taskandpurpose.com/seal-gallagher-trial
Quote:
Government prosecutors characterized Gallagher as a knife-wielding murderer who not only killed a wounded ISIS fighter but shot indiscriminately at innocent civilians, while the defense argued that those allegations were falsehoods spread by Gallagher's angry subordinates, with attorney Tim Parlatore telling the jury that "this trial is not about murder. It's about mutiny."

.... "No one touch him, he's mine," John quoted Gallagher as saying over the radio. The fighter was then brought back to the SEALs' base by the Iraqis, he said, when Gallagher started performing medical aid along with other SEALs. Eventually he was stabilized, John said.

"About that time, Chief Gallagher pulls a knife and he's going to repeatedly stab the prisoner in the neck," said John. He also showed a photo of the ISIS fighter on the ground, with a large pool of blood formed under his next and shoulder. John also outlined efforts by Gallagher after the deployment to allegedly intimidate other SEALs from reporting him, at one point quoting a text message saying that he would "kill motherfuckers" who reported him.

...Lt. Thomas MacNeill, then the platoon's assistant officer in charge. ..first met Gallagher in 2015 and ...was his roommate during the SEAL deployment to Mosul.

Although MacNeill said he never witnessed the alleged killing...said he did witness Gallagher and other SEAL medics working on the fighter, but walked away. At one point, he came back and testified that Gallagher had a knife in his right hand as the two other medics were working. Then later, he saw the ISIS fighter, at that point deceased, with a cricothyrotomy in his neck, tubes coming out of his chest, and a bandage over his leg.... "Next thing I remember is the reenlistment ceremony being performed for Chief Gallagher," MacNeill said.



https://www.foxnews.com/us/eddie-gallagher-navy-seal-iraqi-general-stab-isis-detainee
Quote:
The Iraqi general at the scene of an alleged murder of an Islamic State prisoner in Iraq in 2017 testified in a deposition video played in court Thursday that Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher never stabbed the teenage detainee. ......“At any time did you see Chief Gallagher take out the knife while he was treating the ISIS fighter?” asked Maj. Nelson Candelario, one of Gallagher’s military lawyers. “No,” Abbas replied.

....Exactly one week ago, a Navy SEAL testified that Abbas’ unit tortured, raped and murdered prisoners.



EDIT: Surprise, surprise. It seems that Trump may have indeed helped Gallagher more directly.
https://taskandpurpose.com/navy-seal-chief-eddie-gallaghers-defense-team-now-includes-president-trumps-personal-lawyer
Quote:
Three members of the defense team for Navy SEAL Chief Edward "Eddie" Gallagher were revealed on Wednesday to have close ties to the Trump administration amid reports the president is considering the veteran Navy SEAL for a pardon on Memorial Day.

President Donald Trump's personal attorney, Marc Mukasey, 51, and longtime Trump associate Bernard Kerik, 63, a former New York City police commissioner, have joined Gallagher's defense team in recent months, both men told Task & Purpose on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, in response to a question from a reporter after a motions hearing, lead defense attorney Tim Parlatore confirmed that he had previously represented Pete Hegseth, the conservative Fox News personality who has been privately lobbying Trump since January to pardon Gallagher, according to The Daily Beast.







Cool. More corruption. The Department of the Interior insists that the Baby Trump blimp can't be inflated so the orange moron's giant ego won't be deflated.
It also can't be visible to Trump while he's reading his speech (and/or giving his usual random weird stream-of-consciousness ad libs)
https://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/451505-code-pink-denounces-no-helium-decision-for-trump-baby-blimp
Quote:
Activists planning to fly the “Baby Trump” blimp during President Trump’s “Salute to America” event on July 4 were told by the National Park Service (NPS) that they could not fill the balloon with helium, essentially grounding the giant inflatable.
Another report said that they were even making people with miniature Baby Trump balloons pop or deflate them. I assume these were little balloons like they sell in every grocery store or hand out to kids at events.

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


Last edited by aninkling on Fri 05 Jul , 2019 3:08 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Thu 04 Jul , 2019 8:27 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/07/trumps-fourth-of-july-is-a-cheap-version-of-patriotism/593248/
Quote:
Hello, comrades! Happy Fourth of July, or should I say, Happy 45th President of July! How fortunate we are to see our Tremendous Nation’s military hardware as we celebrate the 240th-ish anniversary of something or the other, and the third year of our Amazing President! Of course, our Great Hero Farmers are going bankrupt and our Treasonous Justice Department is engaging in ongoing Presidential Harassment, but at least our New Sherman Tanks will be on parade!

Unless, of course, our Sherman tanks (after their arduous trip through the Time Tunnel) plunge through the Arlington Memorial Bridge and we have to fish them out of the Potomac. In which case, it will clearly be the result of sabotage by wreckers determined to ruin yet another celebration of the Most Abused President in All of Human History.


If only this were more of a parody. In fact, President Donald Trump’s plan to turn the Fourth of July into a gigantic ritual of reassurance for his spun-glass ego has now fully matured from a crackpot idea into an expensive, authoritarian, and truly weird hijacking of our most important national holiday. Armored vehicles have already been moved through the streets of the District, and we can only be relieved that there aren’t any Minuteman III nuclear-armed ICBMs near Washington, or Trump would probably be ordering the Air Force to cart one of those down Constitution Avenue, as well.

Instead of observing the Fourth like a normal president....



I thought it was funny that the Trump cult spent a miserable 4th of July to support their hero, while most normal people had a nice day off. Though it's a little disturbing at the same time. Who would adore a politician so much that they would stand out in the rain for hours, watch lightning strikes but not take shelter, and try to get people with umbrellas to take them down so they could see Trump better?

He did manage to turn it into a salute to the military, though. I guess we have a second Veterans Day now. Seriously, though, it has not generally ended well when countries go overboard on revering the military (and this is not just Trump, though he amplifies it). From discussions I've seen, this even makes some people with military careers uncomfortable.

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Sat 06 Jul , 2019 6:43 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
Old but weird news from 2015 (it came up in the context of Trump saying something that someone thought sounded like an echo from a Hitler speech):

https://www.businessinsider.com/donald-trumps-ex-wife-once-said-he-kept-a-book-of-hitlers-speeches-by-his-bed-2015-8?r=US&IR=T
Quote:
"Last April, perhaps in a surge of Czech nationalism, Ivana Trump told her lawyer Michael Kennedy that from time to time her husband reads a book of Hitler's collected speeches, My New Order, which he keeps in a cabinet by his bed ... Hitler's speeches, from his earliest days up through the Phony War of 1939, reveal his extraordinary ability as a master propagandist," Marie Brenner wrote.

...When Brenner asked Trump about how he came to possess Hitler's speeches, "Trump hesitated" and then said, "Who told you that?"

"I don't remember," Brenner reportedly replied.

Trump then recalled, "Actually, it was my friend Marty Davis from Paramount who gave me a copy of 'Mein Kampf,' and he's a Jew."

..."But it was 'My New Order,' Hitler's speeches, not 'Mein Kampf,'" Davis reportedly said. "I thought he would find it interesting. I am his friend, but I'm not Jewish."

After Trump and Brenner changed topics, Trump returned to the subject and reportedly said, "If, I had these speeches, and I am not saying that I do, I would never read them."



Speaking of speeches, it seems that Trump's gaffe about airports during the American revolution and the bit about ramming the ramparts (huh?) were something he invented during a teleprompter malfunction. I thought it was strange enough to misspeak and not catch something as blatant as "airports" immediately, if you did it by mistake,* but if he actually came up with that on his own... wow.

*A good public speaker would have turned it into a joke. A bad one would at least have been embarrassed and corrected himself.

https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/451776-trump-says-teleprompter-to-blame-for-claim-revolutionary-war-army
Quote:
Trump told reporters on Friday that the teleprompter malfunctioned after coming in contact with rain during his Independence Day speech in Washington prompting him to stumble over his words.

“Actually right in the middle of that sentence, it went out,” Trump told reporters Friday, according to The Boston Globe. “And that’s not a good feeling, when you’re standing in front of millions and millions of people on television.”

Reading from his teleprompter during a rainstorm on Thursday, Trump said: “The Continental Army suffered a bitter winter at Valley Forge, found glory across the waters of the Delaware and seized victory from Cornwallis of Yorktown. Our Army manned the air, it rammed the ramparts, it took over the airports, it did everything it had to do.”

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Wed 10 Jul , 2019 4:10 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
Unbelievable. Trump and Wheeler think that, by blatantly lying, they can convince everyone to forget his administration's actual environmental record. This "reality" from government officials is like something from the former Soviet Union.
https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2019/07/trumps-us-doesnt-have-cleanest-air-record/593500/
Quote:
Perhaps the most remarkable aspect of President Donald Trump’s speech yesterday was that it happened at all.

It was billed as a celebration of Trump’s environmental leadership. Three senators and six Cabinet-level leaders—powerful people whose scarcest resource is their time—watched the president speak for close to an hour...

...Trump brought back a promise from his 2016 campaign. “From day one, my administration has made it a top priority to ensure that America has among the very cleanest air and cleanest water on the planet,” he said. ...

“Today we have the cleanest air on record,” said Andrew Wheeler, the administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, during the event. “Pollution is on the decline, and our focus is to accelerate its decline, particularly in the most at-risk communities.” “Under your administration,” he added, addressing Trump, “emissions of all the criteria air pollutants have continued to decline.”

The problem is that neither of those claims is true. Six types of dangerous air pollutants qualify as “criteria” pollutants under the Clean Air Act, and all are toxic in some form to human health. At least three of them—ozone, nitrous oxide, and particulate matter—are more prevalent now than they were in 2016, before Trump took office, according to EPA data released this week.

The number of “unhealthy-air days” across the country is also increasing. An unhealthy-air day is a day when ozone or particulate matter poses a threat to at least some of the population, such as children, the elderly, or people with lung conditions...

Neither Trump nor Wheeler is doing anything to help this situation. The EPA is pulling back on its regulation of coal plants, and it’s changing how much it weighs the public-health risks of some toxic air pollution. In addition to rolling back some rules, it has substantially reduced its enforcement and prosecution of existing ones...
(Contrary to all the laws of justice, Wheeler's nose still seems to be the same size.)





And in the continuing circus surrounding Trump's demand for a census question on citizenship....

Everyone except Trump was ready to drop this after the Supreme Court ruled against him (not against the question per se, just the lies to justify it). And then his lapdog Barr decided to move heaven and earth to please Dear Leader, even trying to change the whole legal team that had originally argued the case. Presumably they refused to fall in line with something Trump and Barr wanted them to do. [Edit: an alternative possibility, suggested by someone who might be a lawyer, is that this is a trick to delay a case, generally used when you're about to lose badly]
https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/07/trumps-census-case-confession/593488/
Quote:
Trump Lied to the Supreme Court, and Four Justices Don’t Care

The White House insisted allegations that it wanted to add a citizenship question to the survey for political reasons were conspiracy theories, right up until the moment the president confirmed them.


https://thehill.com/regulation/court-battles/452288-judge-rejects-justice-dept-request-to-pull-lawyers-from-ny-census
Quote:
A federal judge in New York on Tuesday blocked the Department of Justice (DOJ) from changing its entire legal team handling a case on the census citizenship question in federal court in the state.
U.S. District Judge Jesse Furman found that DOJ's motion did not address a procedural rule requiring them to provide a reason for the attorneys' withdrawal from the case.

He wrote that the department's filing offers "no reasons, let alone 'satisfactory reasons,' for the substitution of counsel."...


https://thehill.com/regulation/court-battles/452384-doj-pushes-back-against-claims-changing-legal-team-would-delay
Quote:
The Department of Justice (DOJ) on Wednesday pushed back against arguments that changing out their legal teams for a case in Maryland about adding a citizenship question to the census could cause delays in the proceedings.

The DOJ said in a federal court filing that new attorneys have already begun working on the case and called claims that they may be in violation of a local procedural rule by not providing a specific reason for changing the lawyers “misplaced.”...


I think this is possibly the scariest thing so far about the Trump presidency, tarnishing the Dept of Justice at the highest levels. I didn't much like Sessions, but at least he had some self-respect and didn't step over the line to become a corrupt Trump sycophant like Barr.





btw, the UK ambassador whose accurate assessments of Trump were leaked has resigned.
https://thehill.com/policy/international/452341-british-ambassador-who-called-trump-inept-in-leaked-cables-to-resign I assume his withdrawal from the US, at least, was inevitable after such as embarrassment, though it's a damn shame he didn't just get reassigned. I'd be willing to bet that nearly every other ambassador returned the same assessment to their country.

And we certainly haven't removed any of Trump's horrible US ambassadors, some of whom regularly and openly say ugly things about their host countries. Like Richard Grenell.




https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/452330-trump-defends-home-depot-co-founder-after-shoppers-threaten-boycott
Quote:
President Trump on Tuesday defended Home Depot co-founder Bernie Marcus amid boycott threats from shoppers over the billionaire’s declaration he would donate to the president’s reelection bid.

“A truly great, patriotic & charitable man, Bernie Marcus, the co-founder of Home Depot who, at the age of 90, is coming under attack by the Radical Left Democrats with one of their often used weapons. They don’t want people to shop at those GREAT stores because he contributed to your favorite President, me!” Trump tweeted Tuesday.

“These people are vicious and totally crazed, but remember, there are far more great people (‘Deplorables’) in this country, than bad. Do to them what they do to you. Fight for Bernie Marcus and Home Depot!” he added.

You know, I generally roll my eyes at these boycotts. I don't do political litmus tests as far as business owners, unless they're dumb enough to put a political sign on their actual shop (which, to me, suggests they only want people with the same views to shop there, and I'm happy to go elsewhere). But when Trump uses his office as president to tell people to go shop at Home Depot, and suggests that people will be shopping there because they support Trump, that's it. Home Depot just lost all of my business.* And they can chalk that up to Trump's "support," not because some 90-year-old idiot donated to Trump and gave an interview.

*[To be accurate: at least, until all this blows over and walking into Home Depot can't be construed as implying I support Trump]




Also, I think every one of these senators and representatives should be booted out for not doing their jobs.
https://thehill.com/homenews/senate/452171-republican-lawmakers-on-why-they-havent-read-mueller-report-tedious-and-no
Quote:
Republican lawmakers on why they haven't read Mueller report: 'Tedious' and 'what's the point?'
Quote:
A CNN poll found that, as of late April, only 3 percent of respondents said they had read the entire report.
Despite the title, some of the people who haven't read it include Democrats.

There's no excuse. They could have even had it read to them, if they can't read:
https://thehill.com/homenews/house/443721-dem-lawmakers-plan-12-hour-long-marathon-mueller-report-reading-at-capitol
Quote:
A group of more than 20 Democratic lawmakers are planning a marathon-style reading of special counsel Robert Mueller's redacted report at the Capitol on Thursday.






https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/452411-dc-mayor-july-4-celebration-depleted-security-fund
Quote:
President Trump’s “Salute to America” celebration on the Fourth of July cost the D.C. government $1.7 million, bankrupting the city's fund to protect the capital from terrorist threats and provide security at rallies and other events.

...Chris Rodriguez, director of the D.C. Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency, told The Washington Post that this year’s July 4 celebration cost six times as much as in years past, noting that estimation could grow as the city continues to tally its expenses.
DC is hoping Trump will reimburse them. I wouldn't hold my breath. Apparently the Trump campaign still owes money to some cities that hosted his campaign rallies. And people in New York claim Trump's business has a long history of stiffing contractors.



And the Republicans may come to regret their attempts to smear everyone involved with the Mueller report:
https://www.politico.com/story/2019/07/09/christopher-steele-trump-dossier-doj-1403318#
Quote:
Trump dossier author Steele gets 16-hour DOJ grilling
Quote:
Christopher Steele, the former British spy behind the infamous dossier on President Donald Trump's ties to Russia, was interviewed for 16 hours in June by the Justice Department's internal watchdog, according to two people familiar with the matter.

...The interview was contentious at first, the sources added, but investigators ultimately found Steele's testimony credible and even surprising. The takeaway has irked some U.S. officials interviewed as part of the probe - they argue that it shouldn't have taken a foreign national to convince the inspector general that the FBI acted properly in 2016.

..the extensive interview with Steele, and the investigators' sense that he offered new and important information, may dampen expectations among the president's allies who've claimed that Steele's sensational dossier was used improperly by the bureau to "spy" on the campaign.
Not that Trump's allies care about much except flinging dirt around and hoping it obscures the truth.

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


Last edited by aninkling on Fri 12 Jul , 2019 5:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Fri 12 Jul , 2019 12:31 am 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/07/critics-slam-trump-social-media-summit-invitees-190711192827727.html
Quote:
Critics on Thursday slammed US President Donald Trump's "social media summit" that includes several far-right and other conservative figures, but not major social media companies, including Google, Twitter and Facebook....

Although the White House has not released the official list of participants, some prominent social media personalities have boasted about their invitations online.

This includes Bill Mitchell, who has promoted the QAnon conspiracy theories on Twitter and spread false accusations against Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg.

Ali Alexander, an activist, also said he is attending. Alexander tweeted during the Democratic presidential debate earlier this month that candidate and Senator Kamala Harris was "not an American black". That tweet was then retweeted by Donald Trump Jr, who later deleted the retweet. Harris experienced a slew of racists comments following the tweets.

Tim Pool, a YouTube video journalist, said in a video he was also invited. Pool has amplified claims that conservative media endure persecution and bias at the hands of tech companies.

Also reportedly attending are James O'Keefe, who founded Project Veritas, a far-right organisation known for crossing the ethical line while doing undercover work, and Benny Johnson, who was fired from Buzzfeed for plagiarism.

Johnson is now part of Turning Point USA, a right-wing student group. Turning Point USA's founder Charlie Kirk also said he was attending....

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Fri 12 Jul , 2019 3:11 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
It just gets worse. Not only did Trump invite conspiracy theorists to the White House for a summit, they clashed with real reporters afterward and he praised them for it. Trump is off the rails and heading straight for the 1930s.

After their little confab, Trump invited these loons to sit in on his Rose Garden press conference (where he announced he would follow the law, after all, and obey the Supreme Court's decision on the census citizenship question).
https://thehill.com/homenews/media/452731-trump-social-media-summit-attendees-clash-with-reporters-in-rose-garden
Quote:
The mood quickly turned confrontational after the president returned inside.

Sebastian Gorka, a former White House adviser, stormed over to engage with Playboy correspondent Brian Karem at the conclusion of Trump's remarks...

As reporters and other social media summit guests looked on, Gorka called Karem a "punk" and accused the journalist of threatening him as the two exchanged words. Fellow conservative personalities broke into a chant of "Gorka!" as they filmed the encounter.

...A few others in the crowd heckled members of the press who stood behind a rope line at back of the Rose Garden. Trump took questions from his supporters during the social media summit, but did not respond to shouted questions from the credentialed press during the Rose Garden event.

Joy Villa, a vocal Trump supporter, turned to the press at one point and encouraged them to "stop reporting fake news."

"How many copy editors do you have?" Karem asked.

"We don’t need to have that. We just have our voice," Villa responded, wearing an American flag-themed dress that read "FREEDOM" at the bottom.



https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/452765-trump-declares-gorka-wins-big-after-clash-with-reporters-in-rose
Quote:
The president weighed in on the commotion a day after Gorka clashed with Playboy correspondent Brian Karem....

"@SebGorka Wins Big, No Contest!" Trump tweeted.

...Trump has previously joked about physical attacks on reporters, including joking at a campaign rally last year that Rep. Greg Gianforte (R-Mont.) was aided in the polls because he body-slammed a reporter.



Of course, he seems to be somewhat unhappy with Fox news lately, so there's no place left to get his unconditional support except some of their nuttier opinion columnists (Hannity, for instance) and the dark and weird reaches of the alternative truth sites.
https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-news/trump-fox-news-dems-cnn-856256/
Quote:
President Trump’s relationship with Fox News isn’t as rosy as it was in their halcyon days of six months ago. Whether it’s bashing hosts Bret Baier and Martha MacAllum for the job they did moderating a town hall with Bernie Sanders, or slamming legal correspondent “Judge” Andrew Napolitano for discussing the contents of the Mueller report, the president has lately warmed to the idea of criticizing his most influential propaganda machine. On Sunday, he levied what may have been his most pointed attacks on the network yet, tweeting that watching its weekend anchors “is worse than watching low ratings Fake News @CNN.”...


I'm sure he wasn't too happy with Fox either when they accidentally broadcast chants of "F*** Trump" from a sports bar after the women's soccer match. :)


Possibly why Trump didn't invite Twitter to his pseudo-conference on social media :
https://theweek.com/speedreads/850819/trump-told-fox-news-that-twitter-tampered-follow-button-people-are-confused
Quote:
Trump... claimed Twitter, Google, and Facebook "were totally against me" in 2016 and he's "heard" that "they're fighting me hard right now." ...

If you look at Twitter, I have millions and millions of people on Twitter and it's, you know, it's a very good arm for me. It's great social media. But they don't treat me right. And I know for a fact, I mean, a lot of people try and follow me and it's very hard. I have so many people coming up that they say, "Sir, it's so hard. They make it hard to follow." What they're doing is wrong and possibly illegal. And a lot of things are being looked at right now. [Trump to Fox News]

..."the head of Twitter recently had to explain to the president that numbers of followers sometimes drop when spam and bot accounts are deleted...."

Trump also recently lost a legal appeal. He's still trying to prevent some people from following his Twitter account and commenting if they're critical of him. The problem is that what Trump says on Twitter is official policy - and the law says the president can't ban people from an official government source because he doesn't like them.





And not that we need additional confirmation, but
https://thehill.com/latino/452764-illinois-shelters-say-growing-number-of-children-arriving-from-border-patrol
Quote:
Officials at immigrant youth facilities in Illinois have reported seeing an increased number of children arriving at their centers sick and traumatized after spending a week or more in U.S. Border Patrol facilities.

Officials with Heartland Human Care Services, one of two organizations that contracts with the federal government to shelter immigrant children in the state, told ProPublica Illinois that children at their shelters show “behaviors consistent with trauma like heightened anxiety, and fearfulness."

...Heartland officials told the nonprofit news organization that they are seeing an unprecedented increase of contagious diseases.


And Trump has announced deportation raids again, for this weekend. Who knows whether they'll actually do it. If someone has their final deportation order, fine, pick them up and send them home, but do it sensibly like previous administrations (or the governments of other western countries). Not as some pre-announced mass raid to put on a show and please the Trump supporters. Or perhaps an effort to boost his reelection chances by pretending he's more effective in solving the illegal immigration issue than previous presidents (hah).
And unless the Trump administration has had the foresight to get their paperwork in order (I'm pretty sure the receiving country has to agree to accept the person and issue travel documents), we're likely to see a giant inhumane mess again. Or maybe that's just a bonus for Trump.

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


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 Post subject: Re: You've been Trumped!
PostPosted: Mon 15 Jul , 2019 1:34 pm 

Joined: Fri 10 Aug , 2012 4:42 pm
Posts: 1836
All hail the most environmental president ever, as we were told by EPA chief Andrew Wheeler and Trump himself at a propaganda event last week:
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/12/climate/epa-community-pollution-appeal.html
Quote:
E.P.A. Plans to Curtail the Ability of Communities to Oppose Pollution Permits
Quote:
The Environmental Protection Agency is preparing to weaken rules that for the past quarter-century have given communities a voice in deciding how much pollution may legally be released by nearby power plants and factories.

The changes would eliminate the ability of individuals or community advocates to appeal against E.P.A.-issued pollution permits before a panel of agency judges. However, the industrial permit-holders could still appeal to the panel, known as the Environmental Appeals Board, to allow them to increase their pollution. ...




https://thehill.com/policy/finance/452884-trump-puts-hopes-for-fed-revolution-on-unconventional-candidate
Quote:
After several derailed attempts to stock the independent central bank with allies, Trump announced last week that he intends to nominate former campaign adviser Judy Shelton and Christopher Waller, executive vice president at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, to two open spots on the Fed board of governors.

Waller, a career academic, is seen as a safe and independent choice that won’t carry Trump’s water. But Shelton’s selection may be Trump’s most viable chance to sway the direction of the Fed after Republicans rejected his past efforts fill the bank with loyalists.

...She’s echoed Trump in a series of op-eds and interviews from the president’s Washington, D.C., hotel, calling on the Fed to cut interest rates to support financial markets and Trump’s trade agenda...





btw, many people have pointed out that Trump knows just how to manipulate the media cycle to distract from the things he doesn't want noticed.https://thehill.com/homenews/sunday-talk-shows/452975-klobuchar-trump-wants-these-images-of-detention-facilities
Quote:
Sen. Amy Klobuchar (Minn.), a Democratic White House hopeful, said on Sunday that President Trump is using the expected Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) deportation raids and images from migrant detention centers as distractions from issues facing Americans.
"He wants us to be talking about this today and he uses these people as political pawns," she said on ABC's "This Week."... "If you really wanted to go after the security risks ... why would you alert them and say you're doing this on a Sunday?" she asked...
The raids didn't happen again, which didn't exactly surprise me, though you never know - Trump has access to our taxes to put on whatever spectacle he thinks might help get him re-elected, whether or not it's desirable, cost-effective or useful. And no ethics that would keep him from doing it.

Seriously, his family runs hotels and resorts - how stupid is it to think he would want to get rid of illegal immigrants, when they can hire them for low-paying jobs like housekeeping and landscaping and generally get hard-working, dependable employees? The Trumps were forced to get rid of some of the illegal immigrants at his golf resorts after the media exposed them, but I'll bet that won't last.

In fact, he seems to be pushing farmers and others into hiring more illegal immigrants by reducing the number of visas for legal temporary workers to come and pick crops.






Although I don't see anything inherently wrong with an agreement that would share responsibilities for asylum seekers broadly in the Americas (but, hey, that would require diplomacy and working out a solution where all the participants get something they want), the Trump administration's idea seems to be that they can pick a Latin American country and strong-arm them into taking everyone who wants to come to the US. They've been trying this with Mexico (though how anyone can consider Mexico a safe country lately baffles me). Now they're focusing on Guatemala and it sounds like amateur hour, as usual with Trump and Stephen Miller :
https://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/trump-poised-to-sign-a-radical-agreement-to-send-future-asylum-seekers-to-guatemala
Quote:
Trump Is Poised to Sign a Radical Agreement to Send Future Asylum Seekers to Guatemala
Quote:
According to a draft of the agreement obtained by The New Yorker, asylum seekers from any country who either show up at U.S. ports of entry or are apprehended while crossing between ports of entry could be sent to seek asylum in Guatemala instead. ...

By law, the U.S. must give them a chance to bring their claims before authorities, even though there’s currently a backlog in the immigration courts of roughly a million cases. ... Under this new arrangement, most of these migrants will no longer have a chance to make an asylum claim in the U.S. at all. “We’re talking about something much bigger than what the term ‘safe third country’ implies,” someone with knowledge of the deal told me. “We’re talking about a kind of transfer agreement where the U.S. can send any asylum seekers, not just Central Americans, to Guatemala.”...
Quote:
The draft of the agreement doesn’t provide much clarity on how it will be implemented... “This reads like it was drafted by someone’s intern”—but it does offer an exemption for Guatemalan migrants, which might be why the government of Jimmy Morales, a U.S. ally, seems willing to sign on. ... A U.N.-backed anti-corruption body called the CICIG, which for years was funded by the U.S. and admired throughout the region, is being dismantled by Morales, whose own family has fallen under investigation for graft and financial improprieties. Signing an immigration deal “would get the Guatemalan government in the U.S.’s good graces,” Stephen McFarland, a former U.S. Ambassador to Guatemala, told me. “The question is, what would they intend to use that status for?”...
Quote:
The biggest, and most unsettling, question raised by the agreement is how Guatemala could possibly cope with such enormous demands....


https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/453011-guatemalan-president-postpones-white-house-meeting-with-trump
Quote:
Guatemala announced Sunday that it would postpone President Jimmy Morales’s visit to the White House, where he and President Trump were expected to discuss a safe third country agreement.

The Central American country said in a statement that the planned meeting between Morales and Trump this week had been postponed until the Guatemalan Constitutional Court had ruled on legal challenges....






Distraction is probably also what's going on with Trump's latest insults directed at some of the progressive freshman members of Congress. Why is there so much focus on them by Trump and the GOP? Anyone who's politically savvy knows these are people with very little political power in Congress. Pelosi, McConnell, etc. are the ones whose opinions matter and who control what gets done.


Is this partly what they want to distract people from?
https://thehill.com/opinion/white-house/452993-juan-williams-gop-in-a-panic-over-mueller
Quote:
Welcome to Congress, Robert Mueller.

We’ve got questions for you.

But before we begin, the most important questions are for House Republicans.

Why are you so upset about having Mr. Mueller here?

President Trump says the Mueller report cleared him, so why don’t you want to hear from its author?

Are you worried that once the former special counsel says to your face that Russia twisted the 2016 presidential campaign in Trump’s favor, you’ll be forced to join Democrats in sounding the alarm?

After all, Trump has done nothing to stop Russia from screwing with the 2020 election.

By the way, can you believe the president recently said he’d have no problem doing it all again — taking damaging “information” on a future political opponent from a foreign country?

And did you see the president sharing a dismissive laugh about continued interference with the man responsible for damaging our last election, Russian President Vladimir Putin?

But back to Mueller’s upcoming testimony.

Initially scheduled for this Wednesday but now — perhaps — postponed for a week, it’s coming sooner or later....







EDIT: I finally saw Trump's actual tweets about the four Democratic progressives and started laughing at how much of a moron he is. He can't even think far enough ahead to realize what he's saying. Here's the text, for anyone else who heard the controversy second-hand:
Quote:
So interesting to see “Progressive” Democrat [sic] Congresswomen, who originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world (if they even have a functioning government at all), now loudly....

and viciously telling the people of the United States, the greatest and most powerful Nation on earth, how our government is to be run. Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came. Then come back and show us how...

....it is done. These places need your help badly, you can’t leave fast enough. I’m sure that Nancy Pelosi would be very happy to quickly work out free travel arrangements!

Three of the 4 people he's criticizing were born in the U.S., so Dear Leader finally admitted his administration is a complete and total catastrophe, not to mention corrupt and inept. :D

And the whole thing is getting increasingly insane. An article in The Hill today said the toddler-in-chief is refusing to back down and now tweeting that these four members of Congress might be communists. https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/453116-trump-steps-up-attacks-on-minority-congresswomen

He's also said that any poll that doesn't show him ahead of his Democratic challengers is a "fake poll" whatever the hell that might be.https://thehill.com/homenews/campaign-polls/453074-trump-complains-of-fake-polls-after-surveys-show-him-trailing


Now, I can understand Trump flinging his toys around the playpen to get the media's attention and distract it from real reporting - that's rather easy to do, is these days of clickbait. But what's mind-boggling is that some Republicans still don't have the guts to say "Trump is wrong." A few of the worst Trump sycophants are even trying to madly spin his statement into something socially acceptable. You have to wonder about this guy Andy Harris - no one could possibly be stupid enough to think people would believe his "explanation," so why is he such an incredible toady? Harris was also the tea party idiot who thought "I don't watch mainstream news" (i.e., "I have super-secret government news sources that tell me the real news") is an excuse for claiming Trump did a good job at his Helsinki press conference.
https://thehill.com/homenews/house/453063-gop-lawmaker-trumps-tweets-obviously-not-racist
Quote:
Maryland Rep. Andy Harris on Monday morning became one of the first Republicans to address President Trump's tweets calling on a group of progressive female lawmakers to "go back" to their countries, arguing the comments are "obviously not racist."

...Asked by Nehman on why it's not racist to tell American citizens to go back to their countries of origin, Harris said, "Well, ask the president what he meant by it, but clearly it's not a racist comment. He could have meant go back to the district they came from, to the neighborhood they came from."
Trump might as well bring out the Jim Jones Kool-Aid, because it looks like some of his most ardent supporters will drink it if he asks.




Some days are irresistible reminders of my favorite version of MAGA: Morons are Governing America.




Edit: I originally wondered why everyone was hitting "racist" so hard on Trump's tweet, though there's an obvious case for xenophobic. A significant number of Americans have been brought up to believe that the US is the greatest country on earth and react to any criticism or suggestion that things might be better elsewhere with immediate outrage. The response is likely to be "Well, why don't you move there if it's so much better." Or, if the person doing the criticizing has anything "foreign" about them, "why don't you go back there." (foreign seems to be OK as long as you don't criticize - they assume you think the US is entirely superior to wherever you or your family emigrated from). Oman and Tlaib have made themselves targets by criticizing the US's uncritical support of Israel and Ocasio-Cortez by criticizing Trump's appalling policies at the southern border.

Then I looked up Pressley, who hasn't been in the news as much. It looks like her family has zero ties to any foreign country. She just happens to be African American. Pretty much makes the case for racism.


Edit 2 to add missing link to a Hill article.

_________________
It is this we learn after so many failures,
The building of castles in sand, of queens in snow,
That we cannot make any corner in life or in life's beauty,
That no river is a river which does not flow.

- Louis MacNeice, Autumn Journal


Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. ― Voltaire


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