Monday, April 16, 2018

Monday Reading

As always, please go to the links to read the full articles.

Steve M. at No More Mister Nice Blog has a contrary view to the one expressed by Adam Davidson that we're at the end stage of the Trump presidency:
Conservatives are different. They practice the politics of "what's in it for me?" and rarely game out the long-term consequences. They couldn't imagine how the Iraq War or lack of financial oversight could cause problems because the problems hadn't happened yet -- certainly not to themselves. (Similarly, they can't understand why it's a big deal that Russia interfered in our last presidential election -- their guy won, so what's the problem?) 
Conservative voters are never going to care about Trump's corruption because it has no negative impact on them. They haven't lost any money as a result of his dealings in Brazil or Azerbaijan, so why does any of it matter?  
It may not literally be true that Trump could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and not lose any votes, but he could certainly fleece someone there, or be fleeced, and his voters wouldn't care, because it's irrelevant to them.
The Government Accountability Office has issued its report on the $43,000 secret soundproof booth that paranoid EPA Assministrator Scott "Swamp Thang" Pruitt had installed in his office.  Here's the executive summary (PDF of the full report at the link):
Section 710 of the Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Act, 2017 (section 710) prohibits an agency from obligating an amount in excess of $5,000 to furnish, redecorate, purchase furniture for, or make improvements for the office of a presidential appointee during the period of appointment without prior notification to the appropriations committees of Congress. The statutory language of section 710 requires notification not only for the purchase of furniture and for aesthetic changes, but also for supplying the office with other equipment. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) violated section 710 when it failed to notify the appropriations committees prior to obligating in excess of $5,000 for the installation of a soundproof privacy booth for the office of the Administrator during the period of his appointment. Because EPA used its appropriations in a manner specifically prohibited by law, EPA violated the Antideficiency Act and should report a violation as required by 31 U.S.C. § 1351. 
Nojo at Stinque has a few words for the knuckle- draggers who've been calamitously voting for Republicans for the last 40- plus years and who now would like us to respect their actions and views:
Yeah, sorry. It’s on you. It’s all on you. 
We’re told we’re not supposed to say that. We’re told you might throw a tantrum if we dare suggest, with extensive documentation, that you have been fucking idiots for the entirety of our adult life. We’re told we must respect you and all the poor decisions you’ve made, decisions that have brought our country to the brink of predictable ruin. We’re told you’ll get all upset if we pay any mind to folks who have, and continue to be, screwed by the people you put in office. 
It can be deadly to be a journalist in Trump mentor and master Vladimir Putin's Russia:
A Russian investigative journalist who wrote about the deaths of mercenaries in Syria has died in hospital after falling from his fifth-floor flat. 
Maxim Borodin was found badly injured by neighbours in Yekaterinburg and taken to hospital, where he later died. 
Local officials said no suicide note was found but the incident was unlikely to be of a criminal nature. 
However, a friend revealed Borodin had said his flat had been surrounded by security men a day earlier. [snip]
Journalists in Russia have often been harassed or attacked in recent years for their work. On the same day that Maxim Borodin was found fatally injured, the editor of an official regional newspaper was assaulted in Yekaterinburg, reports say. 
We close as always with a recommendation to check out Infidel 753's blog round- up, your one- stop shop for the curious, the humorous, the serious and much more.

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