Tuesday, February 21, 2017

That's A Lot Of Ass To Work Off!

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(Attribution: DemocraticUnderground.com)

Well, whatever his golf handicap, we know his mental handicap is yuuuge.

Digby has a good read as to why this is reflective of a pervasive dishonesty. Also, she reminds us of this:
At an event in New Hampshire in Feb. 2016, while again complaining about Obama golfing, Trump declared that if he were in office, “I’d want to stay in the White House and work my ass off.”
(Please refer back to post heading.)

Today's Memorial Cartoon Twofer - Remembering The Victims

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(Nick Anderson, Houston Chronicle)

(Clay Bennett, Chattanooga Times Free Press)

"Never Fjorget!"

Stephen Colbert is becoming the go-to relief for life in Trumpland. His show is surging in the ratings with his sharp satire frequently aimed at the unPresident, in contrast to Jimmy "The Hair Musser" Fallon's watery soup of gentle jibes at unstable buffoon Donald "Rump" Trump. Last night, he took on Rump's lie about a non-existent terrorist incident in Sweden ("Never Fjorget"). He also answers former Swedish Prime Minister Carl Bildt's question of "what has Trump been smoking?" Colbert's answer involves something of Putin's (it's bleeped in the video). Colbert's an invaluable national treasure in these times.

The Far Right's "Sassy Gay (Ex) Friend" (UPDATED)

Needless to say, the implosion of far- right troll and Breitbart "News" hack (for now*) Milo Yiannopoulos was long overdue. The tipping point was reached when his comments about pedophilia and pederasty became public. (Considering those comments, remember that this is someone who refers to Donald "Rump" Trump as "Daddy"-- paging Dr. Freud!) Curiously, however, it was only those comments that were sufficiently embarrassing to the slugs that inhabit such venues as the Conservative Political Action Conference and Simon and Schuster to abandon him.  Here's some of what the slugs have been tacitly endorsing in their embrace of their "sassy gay friend*" up until now:

-- his embrace of alt- right white nationalist racism and bigotry;

-- his sexist, vicious stance on feminism and rape culture;

-- his anti- Semitism and Islamophobia; and

-- his encouragement of online harassment of women, transgenders and people of color.

This boil on the ass of humanity has always been a sick, hateful f*ck masquerading as a "cultural libertarian."  He certainly hasn't shied away from expressing his hateful views when given the opportunity.  Yet, knowing that, he was acceptable enough to the publishers at (sweet fancy Moses) Simon and Schuster to snag a $250,000 book advance. More understandably, he was acceptable to the culture warriors and bitter cranks at CPAC, who no doubt loved the fact that he trolled their enemies (women, minorities, LBGTQs, progressives, etc.) with such high visibility and relish.  American Conservative Union Chairman Matt "Dick" Schlapp defended the choice of Yiannopoulos to keynote at CPAC by saying, "...[H]e’s got a voice that a lot of young people listen to..." Well, maybe Hitler Youth the kidz at Stormfront or Richard Spencer's National Policy Institute. That's the demo Yiannopoulos appeals to.

That demo's still there, it's just their "sassy gay friend" finally found a line they wouldn't cross with him.

*UPDATE:  He gone.
*H/t Roy Edroso, who has a great read about the relationship between Milo and the conservative movement.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Tweet Of The Day - Waiting For The Shoes To Drop

More big shoes will be dropping on the Trump- Putin connection.  Our former POTUS (who wanted daily intelligence briefings unlike the shitgibbon) knows the brands and sizes.

President's Day Thought

On this President's Day (or for many of us, "Not My President's Day"), the Washington Post editorial board "hopes" the Republican Congress has learned something in the month the shitgibbon has been in office, something we see few signs of ourselves:
...We hope that Congress has also learned something in the past month: that with truth, openness and integrity becoming scarce commodities in the White House, and with ethnic nationalist and other anti-democratic forces gaining in many countries, an inescapable challenge is looming before the House and the Senate, the same one presented to another Republican Congress 154 years ago by a president who always spoke with honesty and courage: 
“We cannot escape history,” Lincoln said then. “We . . . will be remembered in spite of ourselves. No personal significance, or insignificance, can spare one or another of us. The fiery trial through which we pass, will light us down, in honor or dishonor, to the latest generation.”
What might currently pass for "honor" in the Republican Congress is =cough= McCain =cough= superficial posturing so far.  When the chips are down, they're sticking with party before country. Here's Nate Silver's proof:

We'll go out on a limb and say that 80 percent of Republicans in Congress will stick with the shitgibbon all the way.  It's who they are.

Meanwhile, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is working on a solution to a Trump- enabling Republican Congress:
DCCC recruitment chair Denny Heck (D-Wash.) is apparently unconcerned about finding credible contenders for the 2018 midterms. "We're raining candidates," he said last week.
Better be good progressive candidates.

BONUS:  And with a base like this, we shouldn't expect Republicans to act honorably.

QOTD: Russia's "Psychological Portrait" Of Trump

"Very serious preparatory work is going on in the Kremlin, including a paper — seven pages — describing a psychological portrait of Trump, especially based on this last two to three months, and the last weeks." (emphasis added) -- Andrei Fedorov, Russia's former Deputy Foreign Minister, as interviewed by NBC News. While we think they had the raw intelligence long ago, we can spare them the preparatory work on his psychological portrait: narcissistic personality disorder, pathological liar, delusions of grandeur, selfish kleptocrat with authoritarian tendencies. There, no charge.

As to the "paper" itself, apparently Russian autocrat Vladimir "Vlad the Invader" Putin is increasingly concerned that his investment in Rump might be going south, with his unstable behavior, the certain exposure of his Russian ties, and his self-defeating war with the media (and truth). Fedorov told NBC that the portrait is being prepared in advance of Putin's yet-to-be-scheduled meeting with Rump, and that:
"(Russia) should avoid any kind of step that could damage Trump. Trump cannot come to a meeting with Putin as a loser — he must sort out his domestic problems first." (emphasis added)
Yes, Russia wouldn't want to do anything "that could damage Trump." It took too much time, and too many resources (investments in his properties, etc.) and risks to put him where he is, only to pull the plug.....for now.

Today's Tomorrow Cartoon - Damage Control

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(Tom Tomorrow, via Daily Kos)

John Oliver On The Trump- Putin Connection

John Oliver delves into the "weird relationship" between neo- fascist Putin poodle Donald "Rump" Trump and the Russian autocrat.  This is amusing, for now, but be sure that in the coming weeks and months more will emerge about that "weird relationship" that will be far from amusing.

Poll: Americans Reject Rump's View Of NATO

While sociopath and pathological liar Donald "Rump" Trump retreated to the embrace of his cult fans in Florida this weekend, his Vice President and Defense Secretary were  at a security conference in Munich, Germany trying to reassure European allies that the compromised shitgibbon they work for won't leave them to Vladimir "Vlad the Invader" Putin's tender mercies. They went out of their way to assure the conferees that the NATO alliance was a cornerstone of our foreign and national security policy, contrary to Rump's statements that NATO was "obsolete." Destabilizing NATO and the European Union has been a long-standing goal of Russia, which seeks to reemerge with the power it once had during the Soviet Union era and which wants to reabsorb some of its former republics like the Ukraine.

Despite reassurances from the Rethuglican speakers, our European allies might want to look at how effectively the far-right, white nationalist movement in the U.S. has infiltrated the formerly hardline, pro-NATO  Rethuglican Party of yesteryear. According to the latest Gallup poll, 97% of Democrats want NATO maintained, while a weaker 69% of Rethuglicans do. Overall, 80% of Americans want the longstanding alliance to be maintained.

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Until Rump's hidden ties and "obligations" to Putin's Russia are uncovered, he'll continue to chip away at American support for NATO, in order to please the Putin regime (and perhaps protect Russian investments in his business). With Rump, don't listen to what he or his subordinates say, watch what they do.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Today's Tweets - Our Deepest Condolences To The Victims

More "condolences" here.

And, from the former Swedish Foreign Minister:

Hint: when delusional ignoramus Trump's lips are moving, he's lying.

Sunday Reflection/ Across The Universe

"A lifeless universe?  I prefer to imagine that there are many worlds out there with their own peoples, where the stories that cannot be told on this world can have their chance to live." -- brother blogger Infidel 753.

Look at this and imagine, too (click on image to enlarge):

From NASA/ ESA, February 13, 2017: This image was captured by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope’s Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS), a highly efficient wide-field camera covering the optical and near-infrared parts of the spectrum. While this lovely image contains hundreds of distant stars and galaxies, one vital thing is missing — the object Hubble was actually studying at the time!

This is not because the target has disappeared. The ACS actually uses two detectors: the first captures the object being studied — in this case an open star cluster known as NGC 299 — while the other detector images the patch of space just ‘beneath’ it. This is what can be seen here.

Technically, this picture is merely a sidekick of the actual object of interest — but space is bursting with activity, and this field of bright celestial bodies offers plenty of interest on its own. It may initially seem to show just stars, but a closer look reveals many of these tiny objects to be galaxies. The spiral galaxies have arms curving out from a bright centre. The fuzzier, less clearly shaped galaxies might be ellipticals. Some of these galaxies contain millions and millions of stars, but are so distant that all of their starry residents are contained within just a small pinprick of light that appears to be the  same size as a single star!

The bright blue dots are very hot stars, sometimes distorted into crosses by the struts supporting Hubble’s secondary mirror. The redder dots are cooler stars, possibly in the red giant phase when a dying star cools and expands.

Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA

Today's Cartoons - Nothing Odd Here

You may notice a pattern.

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(Jim Morin, Miami Herald)

(Steve Sack, Minneapolis Star Tribune)

(Rob Rogers, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

(Darrin Bell, Washington Post Writers Group)

Running Scared, Rump Retreats To Safe Space

After a chaotic and disastrous first month in office, neo-fascist demagogue Donald "Rump" Trump fled the White House for the security blanket of a rally of his white supremacist supporters in Florida yesterday. Speaking in the deeply red region of Melbourne, he addressed his supporters gathered in an airplane hanger, and delivered the usual rant about the "dishonest press," while throwing in some laughable "successes" of the first month (great month, if you ignore the Flynn scandal, the botched Yemen raid, the botched Muslim ban and Court reversals, leaked information about his ties to Russian dictator Vladimir Putin, his atrocious Cabinet appointments and withdrawls of some nominees, etc.). For a little rancid red meat for his adoring fans, he tossed a lie about a non-existent "Swedish terrorist attack" to them to gin up more fear and loathing of Muslims.

This insecure, world-class narcissist needs his crowds cheering him to feel important and validated. His loathes a press that isn't behaving like a public relations arm of the White House, stroking his fragile ego and telling him everything he does it the biggest, greatest, most fantastic thing ever.  Rest assured that the next three years and 11 months of his term (if he lasts that long) will be manic campaigning, because this unhinged and needy man needs the safe space of his cult followers.

(photo: Not the Rump rally, but a reasonable facsimile, minus many thousands of people)

Portrait Of A Villain - Rep. Devin Nunes

Joining slimy Republican Rep. Jason "Clouseau" Chaffetz (Weasel-UT) in the gallery of villains willing to do harm to American democracy is smarmy Rep. Devin Nunes (Weasel-CA), who served on the transition team and was an early supporter of neo- fascist demagogue Donald "Rump" Trump.  Nunes joins Chaffetz in not doing his job, but rather assisting in sabotaging any investigation into the Rump- Russia connection:
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes on Friday sent a letter to the Federal Bureau of Investigation asking it to investigate the leaks of classified information that have produced a series of damaging media reports on President Donald Trump’s administration, according to three sources familiar with the letter. 
Nunes has suggested in recent days that the leaks came from career government intelligence employees who are either loyal to former President Barack Obama or opposed to Trump. And Nunes’ letter gives Trump a key Capitol Hill bulkhead in his war on leaks.
This is the clown who, as chair of the House Intelligence Committee, has access (if only he wanted it!) to the same intelligence as counterparts on the Senate side, who at least are concerned enough to be going through the motions of getting to the bottom of things.  As an example of Nunes' "curious" disinterest in all things Rump and Russian, on the same day Michael "Jack D. Ripper" Flynn was fired as National Security Advisor, Nunes opined that "there's a lot of nothing there" when it came to Flynn's conversations with the Russian Ambassador in December. Keen mind. Honest broker. Good to know he's in charge of the House Intelligence Committee.

So, once again, a party- before- country right-wing hypocrite is determined to provide cover and diversion for a corrupt and compromised shitgibbon, rather than investigate the disturbing, potentially treasonous activity revealed by the leaks. Loofa- headed Sen. "Ayn" Rand Paul (R- Galt's Gulch) gave it away when he said, "I just don't think it's useful to be doing investigation after investigation, particularly of your own party."

What was said of Chaffetz applies to Nunes: When the history of this dark period is written, Devin Nunes will go down as one of the real villains. We are certain there will be many, many more to add to the list.