Trumpster Fire

Rhode Island bill would keep Trump off 2020 ballot unless he releases his tax returns


Rhode Island’s state Senate passed a bill this week that would keep candidates off the presidential ballot in their state if they don’t release five years’ worth of tax returns, according to the Providence Journal. State Sen.
via Rhode Island bill would keep Trump off 2020 ballot unless he releases his tax returns
Can we get this passed in Ohio and Florida?

Tourism to U.S. under Trump is down, costing $4.6B and 40,000 jobs


Travel to the U.S. has been on the decline ever since President Donald Trump took office, and new data from the Commerce Department shows the slump translates to a cost of $4.6 billion in lost spending and 40,000 jobs, according to an analysis by the U.S. Travel Association.
via Tourism to U.S. under Trump is down, costing $4.6B and 40,000 jobs
Tourism functions as an export. This is hurting US exports.

Trump officially declares North Korea still a threat, despite his claim after historic summit


President Trump cited an “unusual and extraordinary threat” to U.S. national security as he acted Friday to maintain long-standing economic restrictions on North Korea, including the freezing of any assets in the United States.
via Trump officially declares North Korea still a threat, despite his claim after historic summit
Neville Trumperlain got them to sign a paper!

As Critics Assail Trump, His Supporters Dig In Deeper


“He’s not a perfect guy; he does some stupid stuff,” said Tony Schrantz, 50, of Lino Lakes, Minn., the owner of a water systems leak detection business. “But when they’re hounding him all the time it just gets old. Give the guy a little.”
via As Critics Assail Trump, His Supporters Dig In Deeper
The GOP demands it’s insults be accepted as politically incorrect free speech while it demands its opposition to act in the more comically deferential way possible.

Trump ramps up rhetoric: Dems want 'illegal immigrants' to 'infest our country'

President Donald Trump amplified his heated immigration rhetoric on Tuesday, accusing Democrats of wanting “illegal immigrants … to pour into and infest our country,” language evoking images of pests, not human beings.
Trump ramps up rhetoric: Dems want ‘illegal immigrants’ to 'infest our country’

it’s really hard to believe the “animals” comment was just about MS-13 when he keeps using terms like “infest” and “breed” when talking about immigrants.

MS-13 Gang Leader Getting Some Pretty Great Ideas From Watching ICE Work

SAN SALVADOR, EL SALVADOR—Praising U.S. law enforcement officials for the unfettered cruelty they have unleashed along the Mexican border, MS-13 gang leader Edwin Manica Flores admitted Tuesday that observing ICE’s work in recent weeks has provided him with quite a bit of inspiration. “Serious…
MS-13 Gang Leader Getting Some Pretty Great Ideas From Watching ICE Work

“we would have never thought of keeping kids in a cage like that—in fact, that’s kind of off-limits for us—but you can’t deny the genius behind it”

How Trump Came to Enforce a Practice of Separating Migrant Families

Inside the Trump administration, there is unease about the tactic, but immigration hard-liners like Stephen Miller never gave up on it after the idea was dropped early in Mr. Trump’s term.
How Trump Came to Enforce a Practice of Separating Migrant Families

there is no grand principal here, it’s just sadism. and make no mistake about it, the base supports this. they want the cruelty. they want callous mistreatment.

Manchin becomes final Democrat to back bill preventing separation of immigrant families

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) said on Monday that he will back legislation to prevent the separation of immigrant families along the border, solidifying Democratic support for the bill.
Manchin becomes final Democrat to back bill preventing separation of immigrant families

100% of Democrats, 0% of Republicans. This isn’t Trumpism, this is the Republicans.

‘This Is Not America’: Outrage Spreads Over Trump Mural At Migrant Children Facility

Lawmakers, advocates and journalists are outraged at the the mural of President Donald Trump at a holding center for migrant…
‘This Is Not America’: Outrage Spreads Over Trump Mural At Migrant Children Facility

it didn’t take long to go from “liberals are overreacting” to murals of dear leader’s quotes in dentention centers where kids taken from thier families are kept in cages.

Trump Says Appointment of Special Counsel is ‘Totally Unconstitutional’

The president also said he has the power to pardon himself, raising the prospect that he might take action to immunize himself from the ongoing Russia investigation.
Trump Says Appointment of Special Counsel is ‘Totally Unconstitutional’

The 2nd amendment trolls who talk about the need to defend from tyranny are totally cool with the president declaring himself above the law and uninvestigatable. It was never about defending the Constitution.

Press aide who mocked McCain is out at the White House

Kelly Sadler, the White House communications aide who made a imprudent comment about Republican Sen. John McCain’s health, was quietly let go Tuesday nearly a month after making the insensitive remark, three people familiar with the matter said.
Press aide who mocked McCain is out at the White House

the right will circle the wagons and look for a liberal scalp to collect. they always do that when one of theirs gets fired.

If you’re wondering where lies as a policy started, it started with the last GOP administration.

The aide said that guys like me were “in what we call the reality-based community,” which he defined as people who “believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality.” I nodded and murmured something about enlightenment principles and empiricism. He cut me off. “That’s not the way the world really works anymore,” he continued. “We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality – judiciously, as you will – we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors … and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.”

(via Faith, Certainty and the Presidency of George W. Bush - The New York Times)

This isn’t Trumpism. This is the GOP.

Trump’s memo response to Mueller’s interview subpoena is tyrannical

This is a particularly extreme version of the “unitary executive” doctrine that conservative legal scholars sometimes appeal to (especially when there’s a Republican president), drawing on the notion that the executive branch of government — including the federal police agencies and federal prosecutors — are a single entity personified by the president. But to push that logic into this terrain would not only give the president carte blanche to persecute his enemies but essentially vitiate the idea that there are any enforceable laws at all.

(via Trump’s memo response to Mueller’s interview subpoena is tyrannical - Vox)

This isn’t new. This came up during Bush43.

BREAKING: New Trump Executive Orders Target Federal Worker Protections

The Trump administration unveiled a set of executive orders late Friday afternoon aimed at weakening unions that represent federal workers…
BREAKING: New Trump Executive Orders Target Federal Worker Protections

“Simon said the new executive orders will make it easier for managers to make decisions based on “political loyalty.”” Under the Republicans, facts and reason come second to political correctness and identity.

The princes, the president and the fortune seekers

In return for pushing anti-Qatar policies at the highest levels of America’s government, Broidy and Nader expected huge consulting contracts from Saudi Arabia and the UAE, according to an Associated Press investigation based on interviews with more than two dozen people and hundreds of pages of leaked emails between the two men. The emails reviewed by the AP included work summaries and contracting documents and proposals.
The princes, the president and the fortune seekers

The Republicans are the swamp.

This quid-pro-quo story should have been bigger news.

Emails Show Cooperation Among EPA, Climate-Change Deniers


WASHINGTON (AP) — Newly released emails show senior Environmental Protection Agency officials working closely with a conservative group that dismisses climate change to rally like-minded people for public hearings on science and global warming, counter negative news coverage and promote Administr
via Emails Show Cooperation Among EPA, Climate-Change Deniers
Lysenkoism.

Trump says, without proof, that Mueller team will meddle in midterm elections


Washington (CNN)President Donald Trump alleged Tuesday — without providing any evidence — that special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation will meddle in the midterm elections to benefit Democrats.
via Trump says, without proof, that Mueller team will meddle in midterm elections
In Trumpland, anything good is the result of his being perfect; anything bad is the result of grand conspiracies against him. Nothing is ever his fault.

Giant Hog Farms Are Fighting for the Right to Keep Polluting. The Trump Administration Is on Their Side.


If you enjoy bacon or ham, chances are you’ve eaten pork from North Carolina, where about 16 million hogs—10 percent of the US total—are raised each year.
via Giant Hog Farms Are Fighting for the Right to Keep Polluting. The Trump Administration Is on Their Side.
If you insist we need deregulation to create jobs, please let me know how much pig shit you’re willing to have in your water.

Larry Kudlow may have been more wrong about the economy than anyone alive


This is the same president, after all, who tapped to be the chief scientist at the Agriculture Department a talk-radio host who is not a scientist, named a brain surgeon to run the Department of Housing and Urban Development and floated the idea of his personal pilot as head the Federal Aviation Administration. A party planner, a bartender, a Meineke Car Care branch manager and a cabana boy all found plum administration jobs.
via Larry Kudlow may have been more wrong about the economy than anyone alive

This is not normal.

Unicorns of the Intellectual Right


while there are many conservative economists with appointments at top universities, publications in top journals, and so on, they have no influence on conservative policymaking. What the right wants are charlatans and cranks, in (conservative) Greg Mankiw’s famous phrase. If they use actual economists, they use them the way a drunkard uses a lamppost: for support, not illumination.
via Unicorns of the Intellectual Right

They don’t want to govern. They don’t want to debate policy.

A Scene From the 2032 Ferris Bueller's Day Off Reboot

In 2018, the Republican president Donald Trump, in an effort to alleviate the effects of…anyone? anyone? the rust belt manufacturing decline, implemented tariffs on…anyone? anyone? steel and aluminum setting off…anyone? anyone? a trade war with…anyone? anyone? China, which had the effect of? anyone? anyone? was is successful? anyone? anyone? no it wasn’t…

Why Are There No Good Conservative Critiques of Trump’s Unified Government?


We are now 14 months into united conservative governance. Conservatives came into power with a clear plan to rip out Obama’s achievements and overhaul the whole modern state. Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell planned on running everything through reconciliation. They also had a President who would sign anything. So how is it going?
via Why Are There No Good Conservative Critiques of Trump’s Unified Government?

Worth a read.

The Worst Government Possible, on Purpose


Even conservatives in the Reagan era who preached the gospel of limited government saw some value in the actual practice of governance. Today, all that voters on the right seem to demand of their elected officials is headline fodder and comfort in the face of a more multicultural future. They voted less for a president than an emotion, and Trump’s results thus far bear that out. Even their few efforts to shape legislation have been darkly comical. A government that works is a pretty important thing, yet this one will always be more skilled at reproducing gruel for cable consumption than it will be at forming policy.
via The Worst Government Possible, on Purpose
>From Rollingstone, worth a read.

The real problem with the New York Times op-ed page: it’s not honest about US conservatism


A lot of people believe to this day that the Tea Party uprising and the subsequent eight years of hysterical, unremitting, norm-violating opposition to Barack Obama was about small-government philosophy and a devotion to low taxes and less regulation, and had nothing to do with social backlash against a black, cosmopolitan, urban law professor and his diverse, rising coalition.
But that kind of credulity can only stretch so far, and Donald Trump has stretched it to the snapping point. He abandoned the Very Serious conservative script entirely and the right ate it up. He pledged not to cut Social Security or Medicare, condemned free trade, and insulted the military and intelligence services, and they ate it up. He is a thrice divorced, self-admitted sexual predator wallowing in the kind of material ostentation that gives David Brooks nightmares, and they ate it up.
via The real problem with the New York Times op-ed page: it’s not honest about US conservatism
David Roberts in VOX does a great job explaining how Trumpism is conservatism. This is a must read.

3 Russian spy chiefs visited the US days before Trump decided against new sanctions on Russia


Sergey Naryshkin of Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service and Alexander Bortnikov of its Federal Security Service met with Pompeo to discuss the US’s and Russia’s mutual interest in counterterrorism.
via 3 Russian spy chiefs visited the US days before Trump decided against new sanctions on Russia This is an insane story. It should have been covered more.

Trump is a typical conservative. That says a lot about the conservative tradition.


Corey Robin is the author of “The Reactionary Mind: Conservatism from Edmund Burke to Donald Trump.” The New Yorker described the first edition of this book as “the book that predicted Trump.
via Trump is a typical conservative. That says a lot about the conservative tradition.
Policy driven principled conservatives are the fringe. The angry reactionaies are the base. We need to stop kidding ourselves.

Jared Kushner and Dozens of White House Staffers Handle Sensitive Information Without Permanent Security Clearance


Dozens of employees have been working at the White House and handling sensitive information without permanent security-clearance, according to a new report.  The staffers have been granted temporary approvals while the FBI completes the backlog of background checks, U.S.
via Jared Kushner and Dozens of White House Staffers Handle Sensitive Information Without Permanent Security Clearance
But her emails. There should be a major investigation on why this happened.

Russian 'Birth Tourists' Become Yet Another Trump Revenue Stream


Cynthia McFadden and Katie Tur talk about a mini-baby boom in Florida, thanks to foreign women who have enough disposable income to stay in America until their children are born. McFadden said **most of the medical tourists are from China and Russia**.
via Russian ‘Birth Tourists’ Become Yet Another Trump Revenue Stream
Trump has an open borders for anchor babies policy for his buddies. If you weren’t in on the con then you were the mark.

Study: 42 percent of Republicans believe accurate — but negative — stories qualify as ‘fake news’


All those media-trust studies have a tendency toward the rote. Yes, we already knew that the public had little trust in the country’s journalistic organs. Yes, we knew that finding credible sources could be a harrowing pursuit for the public. Yes, we knew that an increasing portion of the U.S.
via Study: 42 percent of Republicans believe accurate — but negative — stories qualify as ‘fake news’
Most of the time, “Fake News” just means “I choose to ignore facts I do not like”

‘Fake news. I’m coming to gun you all down’: Mich. man arrested for threatening to attack CNN hosts


On Jan. 9, an operator in Atlanta manning the public contact number for CNN received a phone call. According to a federal arrest affidavit unsealed Monday, the male caller launched into a threat. “Fake news. I’m coming to gun you all down. F — k you, f — king ni—rs.
via ‘Fake news. I’m coming to gun you all down’: Mich. man arrested for threatening to attack CNN hosts
Where do you think he got the idea that CNN is Fake News? This story didn’t get the coverage it needed.

Out of 42 top economists, only 1 believes the GOP tax bills would help the economy

Out of 42 top economists, only 1 believes the GOP tax bills would help the economy:

They want to blow up the deficit. If the deficit grows, they’ll say we need to cut social spending. If the deficit shrinks, they come up with some other reason to say we need to cut social spending. They don’t care about the economy. If the economy is bad, they’ll say we need more tax cuts and deregulation. If the economy is doing better, they’ll say we need more tax cuts and deregulation.

They only care about cutting taxes. Nothing else.

Establishment Republicans mystified by their base should look at Ed Gillespie’s campaign

Establishment Republicans mystified by their base should look at Ed Gillespie’s campaign:

polls in Virginia have been surprisingly close, and the key campaign theme for Gillespie has been an unhinged allegation that electing Northam governor will lead to Virginia’s citizens being terrorized by the Salvadoran gang MS-13.

It sounds too stupid to be true, but the brutal reality is that, per the Washington Post, “Virginia Republican Ed Gillespie has released four ads” — four, not one — “that try to tie his Democratic rival for governor, Ralph Northam, to MS-13 gang violence.”

Just lies on top of lies. No shock here.

Do Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump’s Private Email Accounts Violate the Presidential Records Act?

Do Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump’s Private Email Accounts Violate the Presidential Records Act?:

Take a moment to think of all those who were oh so very concerned about Hillary’s emails that are now totally unconcerned about Jared and Ivanka and Mike and Scott and Don Jr. and Eric and John and the eight others who did what Hillary did except worse and after making it a major campaign theme. Think about them answering every issue of Trump’s fitness for office with Buttermails!

Now, can you think of a single reason why you should take those Trump supporters seriously?

I can’t.