Saturday, August 31, 2019

Trumpty Dumpty Sat On A Wall

In addition to the economy, the construction of a wall across the southern border with Mexico is the one issue that demagogue and pathological liar Donald "The Chosen One" Trump had hoped to ride into the 2020 election. At practically every one of his Nuremberg rallies, Trump stirs up his bigoted red cap cult with claims about how well construction on his vanity wall is going. The truth, of course, bears little resemblance to Trump's claims, as Politifact reports:
"President Donald Trump continues to claim that his signature promise from 2016 — to build a U.S.-Mexico border wall — is well on its way, and that hundreds of miles will be completed by the end of 2020, when it’s time for voters to decide whether to re-elect him as president. Chants at his rallies have gone from 'build the wall' to 'finish the wall.'

But despite the chants and Trump’s repeated assurances that a border wall is under construction, what’s been achieved so far doesn’t reflect his campaign promise.

Before Trump became president, 654 miles of the nearly 2,000-mile U.S. Mexico border had primary barriers. As of today [8-30-19], that hasn’t increased 
To date, the administration has replaced about 60 miles of dilapidated barriers with new fencing. And a major component of Trump’s pledge — that Mexico would pay for the wall — hasn’t been part of the equation. U.S. taxpayers have paid the cost." (our emphasis)
Trump TV and the right-wing media wurlitzer will ignore those inconvenient facts so that Trump's rabid base won't feel conned. When vast stretches of border without a wall appear in ads this coming year, that will take some really exceptional conning.

Today's Cartoons

(click on images to enlarge)

(Chris Britt, Counterpoint)

(John Cole, Scranton Times-Tribune)

(John Darkow, Columbia Missourian)

(Stuart Carlson,

(Mike Peters, Dayton Daily News)

(Monte Wolverton,

(Signe Wilkinson, Philadelphia Daily News)

Pro-Democracy Protests Continue In Moscow

Thousands of protesters took to the streets of Moscow today to demand free elections for the city's legislative council. Elections are set for September 8, and Russian thug and autocrat Vladimir Putin, whose party currently dominates the council, has been eager to crush opposition. The protesters were defying a ban by the Kremlin that was imposed on previous marches that erupted in police violence against the demonstrators. According to the Reuters report:
"The demonstrators have been demanding that opposition candidates be allowed to stand in the election. Around 30 of them - mostly running as independents - have been dropped from the race by the election commission which said they had too many fake voter signatures. [snip] Protesters are now also calling for the release of activists detained over earlier rallies, and opposition activist Lyubov Sobol on Saturday described the arrests as 'mayhem' blaming it on the city government and Putin’s office."
Putin has been running a thugocracy comparable to an organized crime family, and won't give up the power or the wealth that he's gained at any level in Russia, including a city council. Crushing dissidents and journalists has become the modus operandi for Putin to maintain his hold on Russia. After the dissemination of the leaked offshore banking documents dubbed the "Panama Papers" in 2016, the extent of Putin's wealth and corruption became known, and part of his calculation in suppressing opposition forces is to avoid the fate of his Ukrainian puppet Viktor Yanukovich, who was toppled in 2014 by a popular uprising against his corruption and links to the Kremlin.

Unfortunately for the democratic forces in Russia, Putin installed his man in the Oval Office in 2016. Otherwise, the U.S. would be, at the very least, cheering them on.

Making Life Worse, Every Day In Every Way

What are the science- phobic Trump swamp people up to now?  No good, of course:

The Trump administration is limiting scientific input to the 2020 dietary guidelines, raising concerns among nutrition advocates and independent experts about industry influence over healthy eating recommendations for all Americans.
For the first time, the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Agriculture, which oversee the committee giving recommendations for the guidelines, have predetermined the topics that will be addressed. They have narrowed the research that can be used only to studies vetted by agency officials, potentially leaving key studies out of the mix.
The 80 questions the committee has been asked to answer do not cover several pressing issues the panel explored five years ago. This includes the consumption of red and processed meat, as well as the dramatic proliferation of ultraprocessed foods, which account for a growing percentage of calories consumed by Americans. Nor will the committee explore appropriate sodium levels for different populations.  (our emphasis)
The interests being served?  Not the public's, of course:
A wide range of experts say these are among the most critical questions as the nation faces an epidemic of lifestyle diseases such as atherosclerosis, heart disease, stroke, obesity and Type 2 diabetes. They also represent the issues that large food companies find most objectionable because they would probably cast high-sodium, high-sugar, high-saturated fat and highly processed foods in a poor light.  [snip]
“The dietary guidelines are under assault from multiple directions,” David Katz, author and founding director of Yale University’s Yale-Griffin Prevention Research Center, said in an email. “This time around, veiled organizations representing the interests of beef, dairy and Big Food are pretending to use science to argue against the actual science and to expunge key recommendations. Of course sustainability should be included. Of course we need to eat less meat.”  (our emphasis)
The Trump regime is barely 2/3 through it's first (and, hopefully, only term), and we defy anyone to point to a more damaging, corrupt, venal administration in all of American history.  Whether it's the despicable treatment of immigrants (including the latest outrage: deporting children getting treatment for life- threatening conditions), global climate change denialism, beggaring workers and farmers in a trade war, rolling back environmental regulations and propping up the fossil fuel industry, etc., etc., this is a regime whose sole purpose seems to be to drag us back to the dark ages, inflicting maximum pain to the maximum number of people along the way.

Because It's Always About Him

What a psychopath:
In his upcoming memoir, newly appointed Smithsonian Secretary Lonnie G. Bunch III describes the private tour he gave President Trump of the National Museum of African American History and Culture, recalling that Trump’s reaction to the Dutch role in the global slave trade was, “You know, they love me in the Netherlands.”  [snip]
“The president paused in front of the exhibit that discussed the role of the Dutch in the slave trade,” Bunch writes. “As he pondered the label I felt that maybe he was paying attention to the work of the museum. He quickly proved me wrong. As he turned from the display he said to me, ‘You know, they love me in the Netherlands.’ All I could say was let’s continue walking.”
Bunch's book also revealed that "The Chosen One" didn't want to see anything "difficult" during the tour because, as his staff told Bunch, he was in a "foul mood."  Given that the tour was not long after he was ridiculed for exaggerating the size of his inaugural crowd, we suspect that was what was eating at the dumbass.

BONUSSteve M. at No More Mister Nice Blog has more on the episode, including what the Dutch really think about The Chosen One.

Bolton: Next Stop Palookaville?

The Trump regime's most prominent neocon and war hawk, National Security Advisor John "Loose Bolt" Bolton, seems to have been sidelined in some key national security discussions, most prominently on Afghanistan policy. According to the Washington Post, Bolton's ingrained tendency to push for military action before diplomacy has virtually iced him out of some meetings:
"Bolton, who has long advocated an expansive military presence around the world, has become a staunch internal foe of an emerging peace deal aimed at ending America’s longest war, the officials said.

His opposition to the diplomatic effort in Afghanistan has irritated President Trump, these officials said, and led aides to leave the National Security Council out of sensitive discussions about the agreement."
It fits a recent pattern. When malignant narcissist and fan of dictators Donald "The Chosen One" Trump had his most recent photo-op with North Korean tyrant Kim Jong Un at the Demilitarized Zone, Bolton was sent off to....Mongolia. Apparently Paraguay was booked up.

Whether this signals Bolton's days are numbered, as many are speculating, is unclear. However, even someone as incompetent and intellectually empty as Trump must hear echoes of the disastrous advice given to George "Dumbya" Bush in the aftermath of 9-11 from one of the many purveyors of that advice: John Bolton.

(photo: Seth Wenig/AP.  Mustache support system John Bolton looking over his shoulder for the anticipated shiv.)

Friday, August 30, 2019

Tweets Of The Day -- Pretend Presidentin' Photo Op

In all seriousness, thinking of our friends in Florida (and everyone else in the hurricane's path) and hoping they remain safe.

Sentence Flynn Already

After months of back and forth with the devious  Russophile Michael Flynn, Trump's go-between with the Kremlin, prosecutors want to move forward with his sentencing. However, Flynn's lawyers are claiming that the Government is refusing to hand over sensitive evidence to the defense team. The judge in the case will review both sides' arguments on September 10.

Flynn was corrupt Russian asset Donald "The Chosen One" Trump's emissary to the then Russian ambassador to the U.S. Sergei Kislyak after the elections, and pled guilty to lying about his contacts with Kislyak over the lifting of sanctions against Russia. The sanctions were imposed on Russian oligarchs and industries in response to Russia's illegal annexation of Crimea and meddling in eastern Ukraine. Trump sent Flynn to signal to his handler Vladimir Putin that he would push to remove the sanctions, as a "thank you" for Russia's help in the elections and perhaps to shore up Trump's financial relationships with Russia.

Trump's criminal pressure on former FBI Director James Comey to "go easy" on his accomplice Flynn in early 2017 was one trigger for Special Counsel Mueller's investigation into Russian meddling in the election and other matters.  Time to "Lock him up!"

Today's Cartoons

(click on images to enlarge)

(Jim Morin, Miami Herald)

(Lalo Alcaraz, LA Weekly)

(Walt Handelsman, The Advocate, New Orleans)

(Steve Benson,

(John Deering, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette)

(Dan Wasserman, Boston Globe)

(Tom Toles, Washington Post)

(Kevin Kallaugher, Baltimore Sun)

(Mike Luckovich, Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

(Bruce Plante, Tulsa World)

(Mike Peters, Dayton Daily News)

(Christopher Weyant, Boston Globe)

(Mike Thompson, USA Today)

QOTD -- Lost

"A win for farmers would be to get the markets back but listen, and I'll tell you, I don't think we get China back. I think China is a lost market for agriculture and there's just too much damage done there." --  National Farmers Union President Roger Johnson, in a radio interview yesterday with KFGO's Joel Heitkamp (yes, Heidi's brother), Fargo, ND.  China already has new markets identified that it will access in the future (e.g., Brazil, which is burning up parts of the Amazon rain forest to accommodate China's soybean demand that once was met by American farmers -- a sick, ironic outcome of the idiocy of Donald "The Chosen One" Trump's trade war).  "...China is a lost market for agriculture" -- thanks, Trump!

Weekend Respite Music

Australian pianist and composer Elena Kats-Chernin had the premiere of her ballet, "Wild Swans," in Sydney in April 2003.  This is the second movement, the "Eliza Aria," arranged for piano and violin, with pianist Sara Nicolls and violinist Nicola Sweeney.  Relax and enjoy a little respite.

He's Called "Cheeto Benito" For A Reason

In reading this story about neo-fascist demagogue and mental case Donald "The Chosen One" Trump retweeting a symbol used by white supremacists, we noted this tweet from 2016 that was included in the story:

That Trump echoed the thoughts of Italian Fascist dictator Benito Mussolini (Il Duce), Hitler's WWII ally, shouldn't surprise anyone, since his admiration of dictators is well known. He knows his right-wing, red cap cult longs for an authoritarian leader who will bulldoze democratic institutions and political norms to establish their warped, racist policies. He's happy to oblige.

Shocker: Yes, Trump Lied To Juice The Markets

If you're surprised, you're not paying attention.

A few days ago, we posed the question, "did Trump lie to juice the markets?" as his trade war with China was sending the stock market diving?

Well of course he lied:
... Trump flashed signs of optimism this week that the trade war could be resolved, saying he's received calls from Chinese officials saying they wanted to restart talks. Though Trump and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin insisted there had been "communication," aides privately conceded the phone calls Trump described didn't happen they way he said they did.
Instead, two officials said Trump was eager to project optimism that might boost markets, and conflated comments from China's vice premier with direct communication from the Chinese.  (our emphasis)
If any statement offered as "fact" by the pathological liar in the Oval Office is taken at face value, shame on the enabler/ sucker who's taken in.  How many craven lies over how many dystopian years does it take before it dawns on them that we have a deeply disturbed, dangerous lunatic making a shambles of everything?


Thursday, August 29, 2019

Pic Of The Day: Where Is Everybody?

(click to enlarge)

Tea Party Trumper Gov. Matt Bevin (R-Kain-tuck) has the distinction of being the most unpopular governor in America, with support at roughly 32%.  So the flailing Governor thought he'd call in the cavalry to get the red cap cult out to one of his rallies, and Trump crime family underboss "Greasy" Donald Jr. answered the call. The "rally" was held today in Pikeville, KY and the sad turnout reminded one of Trump Sr.'s bigly Inauguration Day fizzle.

When it became apparent that the crowd could fit in a few minivans, organizers herded the sparse true believers closer to the stage, presumably where they could be sprayed by Greasy Don's spittle.

So much winning!

(photo: Ryland Barton, Kentucky Public Radio)

Toddler Tweets "Age Of Trump," Hilarity Ensues

In one of his nonsensical tweets yesterday, delusional narcissist and con man Donald "The Chosen One" Trump referred to an "age of Trump" when we'd look back on how mean the press was to him. Twitter had he last laugh when "Age of Trump" trended:

Many more at the link above.

"Mad Dog's" Beginning To Bark

Here's the lead paragraphs from Jeffrey Goldberg's article in The Atlantic on former Defense Secretary and Marine Corps General James "Mad Dog" Mattis:
"On December 19 of last year, Admiral Michael Mullen, the former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, met James Mattis for lunch at the Pentagon. Mattis was a day away from resigning as Donald Trump’s secretary of defense, but he tends to keep his own counsel, and he did not suggest to Mullen, his friend and former commander, that he was thinking of leaving.

But Mullen did think Mattis appeared unusually afflicted that day. Mattis often seemed burdened in his role. His aides and friends say he found the president to be of limited cognitive ability, and of generally dubious character."
(our emphasis)
That's a gentlemanly way of putting it, but it squares with the estimations of former Secretary of State Rex "Rexxon" Tillerson. former Chief of Staff John Kelly, and former National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster, and many others who reportedly disparaged Russian asset and bigoted demagogue Donald "The Chosen One" Trump's mental ability and unfitness. The article continues:
"Mattis had maintained his dignity in perilous moments, even as his fellow Cabinet officials were relinquishing theirs. At a ritualized praise session at the White House in June 2017, as the vice president and other Cabinet members abased themselves before the president, Mattis would offer only this generic—but, given the circumstances, dissident—thought: 'It’s an honor to represent the men and women of the Department of Defense. We are grateful for the sacrifices our people are making in order to strengthen our military, so our diplomats always negotiate from a position of strength.'" (our emphasis)
We recall the nauseating, forced praise by Trump's toadies (VP Pence, and Reince "Prepuce" Priebus, among them) as Trump went around the table of Cabinet members absorbing their worshipful accolades with a smug look on his face. A big question now is whether Mattis will go beyond the gentlemanly, second-hand reports of his displeasure with Trump before the 2020 election. Goldberg concludes the article:
"I thought back to what he’d told me earlier in the summer, when I had asked him to describe something Trump could say or do that would trigger him to launch a frontal attack on the president. He’d demurred, as I had expected. But then he’d issued a caveat: 'There is a period in which I owe my silence. It’s not eternal. It’s not going to be forever.'(our emphasis)
We're in a national emergency with an unhinged Trump. It's time for senior public servants like Mattis to stow their reservations. Time's running out for "Mad Dog" to go from barking to biting.

(photo: Mike Segar, Reuters)

Today's Cartoons

(click on images to enlarge)

(Jeff Darcy, Cleveland Plain Dealer)

(Mike Luckovich, Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

(Pat Bagley, The Salt Lake Tribune) 

(Tom Toles, Washington Post)

(Marshall Ramsey, Mississippi Today)

(Bill Bramhall, New York Daily News)

(Bob Gorrell,

(John Branch,

(Gary Markstein,

Javanka Looked To Replace Pence In 2020

Trump's wooden sycophant and Bible thumping hypocrite VP Mike "Dense" Pence has to sense the whispering that his place on the Trump / Titanic ticket for 2020 is in some jeopardy. Despite Trump's own show of support for his loyal lackey, Pence obviously keeps hearing rumors of a replacement emerging. Trump's former UN Ambassador Nicky Haley issued a bizarre tweet out of nowhere saying she supported Pence and "enough of the rumors." Okaaay, nothing like fueling rumors by acknowledging their existence.

Axios is reporting that two of the major advocates for Haley replacing Pence are none other than inept Machiavellian grifters Jared and Ivanka. They obviously know racist and misogynist Trump is underwater with suburban women, who detest his lying and bullying, his overt racism and his bowing to the National Rifle Rampage Association, among other things. From all indications, they won't get their "dream" ticket from daddy, who would never admit that he needs help with voters, especially women.

(photo: left, Daddy's little tool, right, Daddy's little girl)

Night Night, Sleep Tight....

Don't let the bedbugs at Trump's failing Doral property bite. The story of bed bugs (and other vermin) at unfit demagogue and hustler Donald "The Chosen" One Trump's desired venue for the next G7 summit / emoluments fest has had him tweeting up a defensive storm. If nothing else, Trump associates himself with his "properties," lavishing them with absurd over-the-top superlatives that he'd like to associate himself with.

Trump's properties generally are frequently the subject of health code violations, particularly Doral:
"Trump Tower’s roach situation, though, paled in comparison to the infestation at Doral, where Florida authorities reported 524 health-code violations from 2013 to 2018, according to state health records and research compiled by the Democratic super PAC American Bridge.

In 2015, they found 'approximately 20-25 live roaches... on the walls, baseboards and floors in the kitchen food prep area and behind a utensil table inside a wall crack.' They also reported between 20 and 30 'live, small flying insects... in the kitchen and dishwasher room.'

Inspectors recommended that the state issue an emergency order and temporarily shutter the Doral kitchen. It’s not clear if it was ever actually shut down."  (our emphasis)
Should Doral be the venue of the next G7 summit / emoluments fest, attendees should consider packing their own food, bringing bug spray, and mouse traps. Or call in via Skype.

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Trump Beaten By Dem Candidates By Big Margins

The Quinnipiac poll released earlier today will cull out the not-gonna-be candidates for the Dem nomination, most of whom should be looking at either flipping the Senate (O'Rourke, Bullock) or providing their resources to the DNC or DSCC (billionaire Steyer, millionaire Delaney or Gillibrand*,with $8 million in her campaign funds). For the Nth time, it confirmed the 10 top tier of candidates who will be on the "debate" stage in September.

Beyond sorting out the Dem field, the poll provided a stunning result: each Dem candidate in the running for the nomination would crush Russian asset and racist demagogue Donald "The Chosen One" Trump:
Biden +16 (54%-38%)
Sanders +14 (53%-39%)
Warren +12 (52%-40%)
Harris +11 (51%-40%)
Buttigieg +9 (49%-40%)
The usual caveats apply, being a little over 14 months before the election, but the consistent number in almost all recent polls is approximately 40. That's the ceiling for Trump support and it generally tracks his job approval numbers. Trump's clearly worried (even Fux polls show roughly the same losing margins as this one does) and his behavior will become more erratic and desperate going forward.

He's also deeply underwater in how he's seen handling foreign policy, immigration, trade, gun policy and race relations, never rising above 38 percent approval.  On the economy, his disapproval number shot up to 49 percent.  Sixty- two percent believe he's doing more to divide the country.  In short, there's nothing in the poll that's good news for "The Chosen One."

However, we can't let polls -- be they good or bad -- diminish our passion to register and get every Dem and anti-Trumper to the only poll that counts: the one on election day. Many thousands of people in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania stayed home because the polls told them Hillary was going to win and implied that their vote didn't matter. How did that turn out?
 * Sen. Gillibrand just announced she was leaving the race late this afternoon.

Tweets Of The Day -- Revisionist Bedbugs At The New York Times (UPDATED)

WTF, the "paper of record"?

The author of the Times article, Jeremy Peters, has a history of sloppy reporting that leans over backwards to cosset right- wing knuckle draggers and their "Chosen One."  You don't miss something as blatant as Tea Party racism by accident.

BONUSSteve M. at No More Mister Nice Blog has the historical receipts (and pics).

UPDATE:  The blowback must've been strong (thank you, Paul Krugman) --

Still, their updated "context" is very weak, um, "tea."  Racism was at the core of the movement, not about "displays at some Tea Party rallies."  WTF, you gutless assholes.

Today's Cartoons

(click on images to enlarge)

(Mike Smith, Las Vegas Sun)

(Clay Jones,

(Rob Rogers,

(Chris Britt, Illinois Times)

(Kevin Siers, The Charlotte Observer)

(Nate Beeler, Counterpoint)

(Matt Davies, Newsday)

(John Deering, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette)

(Matt Bors,

(Kevin Kallaugher,  Counterpoint)

Mid-Week Difference Song

Tomorrow, the late r&b and jazz singer Dinah Washington might have celebrated her 95th birthday. She was arguably the most popular African-American female singer of the 1950s, winning the Grammy for her best-known song, "What A Difference A Day Makes." She died at the age of 39 before she could realize her full potential as a singer and songwriter, but not before leaving a legacy that would influence singers for years to come.

A Day In The Life

A brief, incomplete digest of just one day's worth of Trump's dystopian, brainless authoritarianism.

"Break the law! Take the land!":
President Trump is so eager to complete hundreds of miles of border fence ahead of the 2020 presidential election that he has directed aides to fast-track billions of dollars’ worth of construction contracts, aggressively seize private land and disregard environmental rules, according to current and former officials involved with the project.
He also has told worried subordinates that he will pardon them of any potential wrongdoing should they have to break laws to get the barriers built quickly, those officials said.  (our emphasis)
"Suck on it, hurricane victims!":
The Trump administration is pulling $271 million in funding from the Department of Homeland Security, including the Federal Emergency Management Agency's Disaster Relief Fund, to pay for immigration detention space and temporary hearing locations for asylum-seekers who have been forced to wait in Mexico, according to department officials and a letter sent to the agency by a California congresswoman.
To fund temporary locations for court hearings for asylum-seekers along the southern border, ICE would gain $155 million, all from FEMA’s Disaster Relief Fund, according to the letter from Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard, D-Calif., which was seen by NBC News. (our emphasis)
"Clear-cut the motherf*cker!":
President Trump has instructed Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue to exempt Alaska’s 16.7-million-acre Tongass National Forest from logging restrictions imposed nearly 20 years ago, according to three people briefed on the issue, after privately discussing the matter with the state’s governor aboard Air Force One.
The move would affect more than half of the world’s largest intact temperate rainforest, opening it to potential logging, energy and mining projects. It would undercut a sweeping Clinton administration policy known as the “roadless rule,” which has survived a decades-long legal assault.
Trump has taken a personal interest in “forest management,” a term he told a group of lawmakers last year he has “redefined” since taking office. (Ed.: by "forest management," he means "raking.")  (our emphasis)
"I'm the best negotiator!":
BEIJING - President Trump may think he’s keeping Chinese negotiators guessing with his whiplash-inducing remarks about the U.S.-China trade war.
But he’s not fooling anyone here.
More than a year into the deepening commercial conflict, Chinese officials and analysts say they’ve got a handle on the tweeter-in-chief and are no longer fazed by his unpredictable initiatives.
“There is a lot of fatigue with President Trump’s ‘art of the deal,’ ” said Wang Huiyao, president of the Center for China and Globalization and an adviser to China’s cabinet. [snip]
Trump’s claim to have the upper hand at the negotiating table does not appear to have convinced the Chinese.
“They’ve decided Trump is a vacillating guy who can’t figure out what he wants and gets spooked every time the stock market goes down or someone accuses him of not being tough,” said Arthur Kroeber, managing director of Gavekal Dragonomics, a consultancy in Beijing. “Although there are problems in China, they believe they have their economy under control, more so than Trump. They think he is more vulnerable to a slowdown and that they can afford to wait him out.”  (our emphasis)
Rest assured, tomorrow, and the day after, and the day after that, there'll be more because this is the worst reality TV show we've ever lived through.


"... It isn’t really about a choice between VP Biden or Senator Warren or Senator Harris or Senator Sanders or any of the other Democratic primary candidates. The simple reality we face as Americans is that nothing positive, not a single damn thing, is possible on healthcare, immigration, the climate, the environment, the economy, foreign policy, defense policy, criminal justice, and/or trade policy if the President is reelected and if the Senate remains in Republican hands. The real issue right now isn’t whether VP Biden’s healthcare plan is too incremental or whether Senator Sanders is too idealistic and therefore unrealistic and improbable. And that either of them have the ability to deactivate Democratic voters because they’re not having their ideological pleasure centers tickled. At the Federal level, the real issue is electing a Democrat president with a Democratic majority Senate and maintaining the Democratic House. That’s it. Almost any of the Democratic primary candidates is acceptable given this reality. And even a one seat Democratic majority in the Senate is as well." -- Adam Silverman, stating what should be obvious: staying focused in the run- up to November 2020 -- and that we have the political winds behind us.  He also stresses the importance of winning governor and state legislature races prior to the 2020 census.  Nice pep talk and reality check.

Did Putin's Oligarchs Co-Sign Trump Loans? (UPDATED)

On last night's "The Last Word", Lawrence O'Donnell reported that a source close to Deutsche Bank told him that huge loans given to demagogue and Russian asset Donald "The Chosen One" Trump by Deutsche Bank were co-signed by Russian oligarchs close to Russian thug Vladimir Putin. The report has not been verified by NBC News, other news sources, or confirmed by Deutsche Bank. Trump had to go to foreign sources for credit, since his multiple bankruptcies caused American financial institutions to shun him.

Deutsche Bank has been at the center of money laundering activities involving Russian money, and has been sued by committees of the House of Representatives for Trump's tax documents used to demonstrate his assets to the bank for loan purposes. The bank suggested in Federal court that it is in possession of such tax documents.

Trump has been adamant that his tax returns remain private, despite his lie before the 2016 election that he would release them. There are good reasons that he wants them kept under seal, including likely tax, wire and bank fraud exposure. The possibility that Putin-tied Russian oligarchs have underwritten huge loans to him and his organization from Deutsche Bank would explain so much about his fealty and subordination to Putin and Russia.

BONUS:  The story has engendered a trending hashtag, #RussianCosigners

UPDATE:  O'Donnell has now walked back the story, saying "it wasn't ready for broadcast." 

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Tweets Of The Day -- Bedbugs Everywhere! (UPDATED)

They're at Trump's "perfectly located" Doral National golf club, precisely because pathological liar Donald "The Chosen One" Trump says they're not:

The truth, like a bedbug, bites:

And they're at The New York Effing Times:

For how poor, campus free speech concern troll Bret "Bedbug" Stephens responded to this mild insult (and the subsequent responses to Stephens) go here.

UPDATE:  Professor Karpf has a most wonderful response here that sums it all up.

Trump To Merkel: "I Have German In My Blood"

German Chancellor Angela Merkel couldn't suppress a snort and raised eyebrows when, sitting next to neo-fascist buffoon and mentally unstable con man Donald "The Chosen One" Trump at a meeting, Trump declared "I have German in my blood," awkwardly evoking the chant of the neo-Nazis who marched in Charlottesville in 2017 chanting "blood and soil," a Nazi slogan.

Trump's father's family came from Germany and was originally named "Drumpf." As the linked article notes, his grandfather, Friedrich, came to North America during the Yukon gold rush in the late 1890s and established hotels there that also doubled as whore houses. After attempting to return to Germany, Frederick was tossed out for avoiding military service (grandfather would be so proud of his grandson for following in his footsteps).

In the Merkel meeting, Trump jumped on a very lukewarm past invitation to visit Germany, after Merkel was asked about it. It's something that Merkel would be less than thrilled about, given Trump's extreme unpopularity there. Also, you know he'll want to visit the site of Hitler's chancery and bunker in Berlin. Blood and all that.

(photo: It's in his blood.)