DDoT Attack

This came up in the morning thread, but I’m sure it’s emblematic of a pattern we’ll see repeated nonstop until the Trump Error is no more; via WaPo:

LONDON — In a highly unusual move, Britain’s main surveillance agency slapped down allegations that the Obama administration used it to spy on Donald Trump during the presidential campaign, saying the claims were “utterly ridiculous.”

The unit, known as the GCHQ, is the British equivalent of the National Security Agency and usually remains tight-lipped on allegations related to intelligence matters. Its normal practice is to neither confirm nor deny claims.

Not this time.

“Recent allegations made by media commentator Judge Andrew Napolitano about GCHQ being asked to conduct ‘wire tapping’ against the then President Elect are nonsense. They are utterly ridiculous and should be ignored,” GCHQ said in a statement.

The agency’s public denial followed a contentious press briefing in Washington on Thursday where White House press secretary Sean Spicer insisted that Trump stands by his explosive charge that Obama spied on him during the 2016 presidential election. Spicer has, however, attempted to soften Trump’s initial allegation, saying that that Trump’s use of the word “wiretap” was not meant to be taken literally, but to refer to surveillance more generally.

During the briefing, Spicer cited claims made earlier this week on Fox News by Napolitano. The former judge told the broadcaster that sources had informed Fox News that Obama used Britain’s GCHQ so “there’s no American fingerprints on this.”

Trump will never stop spouting absurd, easily disprovable lies, so his minions will continue to craft ridiculous post-hoc rationales for those lies (e.g., the Brits did it!), and the White House will keep trotting Spicer out to disseminate the lies. I hope the media peeps never stop hounding him about it and that our exasperated allies continue to call bullshit when they’re drawn into Trump’s vortex of mendacity.

There are so many scandals and absurdities floating around this defiled, dysfunctional White House at any given moment — issues that in pre-Trump America would have ground a normal administration to a halt until resolved. There are too many for anyone to handle at once, so the media will continue to fixate on One Big Lie at a time. This week, it’s that the marmalade hairball in the Oval Office accused his vastly more popular predecessor of a felony.

I don’t think the Trump people are masterminds who are deliberately distracting us; I believe they are hapless shitlords who are stepping on their own dicks as they lurch from one catastrophic fuckup to another. However, the effect reminds me very much of a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack — let’s call it a distributed denial of truth (DDoT) attack.

The DDoT is the effect, but the cause has been clear throughout Trump’s turn in public life: He’s a compulsive liar who cannot admit fault when called on his lies. That was one thing when Trump was merely a loudmouthed crook who bilked rubes and shook down municipalities in the real estate / education scam / name licensing business.

It’s quite another now that he’s got minions entrenched in positions of great power who are willing to squander the international prestige of the United States of America in a lame attempt to clean up after the boss. I try to remain optimistic, but I don’t see how this ends well, to be honest. But hey, at least it’s Friday! Open thread!

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269 replies
  1. 1
    Snarki, child of Loki says:

    “Britain has learned that Saddam Trump recently tried to acquire bullshit from Niger.

    …but it turned out that he already had a copious supply.”

    ReplyReply
  2. 2
    Corner Stone says:

    I don’t think the Trump people are masterminds who are deliberately distracting us; I believe they are hapless shitlords who are stepping on their own dicks as they lurch from one catastrophic fuckup to another

    There are many disparate parties that all want power for themselves in this admin. They know the shit they want is crazy, and that Trump is coo-coo to the max. In that light they all have to lurch over each others dicks to grab what they can while they can.
    The FP blunders aren’t “a distraction”, they are the end goal of someone in the WH. It just so happens that all the domestic fuckups are “distracting” from each other.
    IOW, some in the admin want to burn the establishment down, some want to burn the country down, some want to burn the world down.

    ReplyReply
  3. 3
    Yarrow says:

    Apparently Spicer talked for over eight minutes about it. I watched NBC Nightly News for a few minutes to see what the media was saying. They put a digital timer in the upper left corner of the screen and added fake “tape advancing” sounds while the timer flew forward through the eight minutes. Hilarious. Made Spicer look like even more a tool.

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  4. 4
    hovercraft says:

    In a highly unusual move, Britain’s main surveillance agency slapped down allegations that the Obama administration used it to spy on Donald Trump during the presidential campaign, saying the claims were “utterly ridiculous.

    I’m highlighting those phrases because I think we will see the second two so frequently that the first part will be dropped. Twitler unfortunately for him and us, is now the president of the United States, not some moron sitting in his penthouse floating bullshit conspiracy theories, his words have weight and consequences. The people and entities he lies about can’t just ignore him, so he will get push back, this is still gentle, but someone needs to inform him that these people could do real damage, they also lie for a living, the difference is they’re paid to lie and they are much better at it. They can hurt him because they can expose him, he should watch his back.

    ReplyReply
  5. 5
    Corner Stone says:

    It’s still kind of starkly brutal to see a WH Budget Director stand there and completely lie about feeding poor kids and caring for the elderly.

    ReplyReply
  6. 6
    Yarrow says:

    @Corner Stone:

    some in the admin want to burn the establishment down, some want to burn the country down, some want to burn the world down.

    Some don’t really want to burn things down–they just want to get rich while dicking over the poor. You’re right that it’s a mix that leaves everything in chaos and not much actually getting done.

    ReplyReply
  7. 7
    Ridnik Chrome says:

    “Marmalade Hairball” is my new favorite name for You Know Who.

    ReplyReply
  8. 8
    Yarrow says:

    @hovercraft: I don’t think Trump understands that our allies are not governed by the same laws about not spying on Americans that our own IC is. It’s not at all out of the question that our allies have information on him that they got via their own surveillance, and which they have shared with our IC.

    ReplyReply
  9. 9

    @Ridnik Chrome:I prefer Republican President to any cutesy names.

    ReplyReply
  10. 10
    ArchTeryx says:

    Just trying to hold myself together, wear a little green in honor of my Irish ancestors, and work on some job applications while I continue to watch the Ultimate Shitshow unfold and wonder if I’m gonna come out of it alive.

    (I do happen to agree with an Irish friend of mine: St. Paddy’s Day is when all the amateurs come out to drink. The professionals go to the pubs the other 364 days of the year).

    ReplyReply
  11. 11
    Snarki, child of Loki says:

    @Corner Stone: “It’s still kind of starkly brutal to see a WH Budget Director stand there and completely lie about feeding poor kids and caring for to the elderly.”

    Oh wait, that’s next week’s budget plan. My bad.

    ReplyReply
  12. 12
    lollipopguild says:

    @hovercraft: It will be interesting to see what happens when one of our allies tells trump to stay at home when he wants to visit. Sometimes a President will want to take a trip overseas to make himself look good, it will be funny if the country or countries tells him to stay away.

    ReplyReply
  13. 13
    randy khan says:

    @hovercraft:

    I think that pretty much all of the non-U.S. foreign policy establishment has figured out that the U.S. is now run by people who have no idea what they’re doing. I imagine it’s a topic of discussion at meetings between foreign leaders and diplomats when the U.S. is not present. I agree with you that it’s a safe bet that we’re going to see a lot more statements like this. (And actually, we’ve already seen similar things in response to wild claims about refugees in Europe.)

    Another spokesperson referred to the claims as rubbish, by the way. It was very British.

    ReplyReply
  14. 14
    different-church-lady says:

    “APOLOGY TOUR!”

    ReplyReply
  15. 15
    LAO says:

    @Corner Stone: I’m convinced he wasn’t lying — he believes everything he said. So not a lie, but a horrible, misinformed, sociopathic, randian world view. I hate these people.

    ReplyReply
  16. 16
    GrandJury says:

    I wonder if Betty Cracker will ever stop stepping on these landmines intended to distract from real scandals.

    ReplyReply
  17. 17
    LAO says:

    At some point, it may dawn on this administration, that words have meaning and consequences. It will never occur to Trump.

    ReplyReply
  18. 18
    Corner Stone says:

    @Snarki, child of Loki: Like all Trump plans, there is an obvious fatal flaw. The admin is not going to pay anyone to bring the kids to the elderly housing. And there’s *no way* the elderly are going to be able to catch the kids themselves. Looks like Soylent Green 2.0 here we come!

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  19. 19
    Ridnik Chrome says:

    @schrodingers_cat: It’s been over five months since the election, and I still can’t bring myself to even think the word “president” in proximity to that clown’s name.

    ReplyReply
  20. 20
    Mickee says:

    Bigger story–Trump and Tillerson tag team to start a war with N. Korea this am. This is not just foreign policy, it is also part of Trump’s domestic jobs program. Take all the unemployed factory and coal workers who voted for him and enlist them/their children in the newly flush US military so they can serve as cannon fodder in wars that will enrich his buddies. And these folks will all cheer him on and then vote for him again.

    ReplyReply
  21. 21
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Mickee:

    This is what’s really giving me a stomachache this morning.

    ReplyReply
  22. 22
    Humboldtblue says:

    Talk of California’s secession may be utter nonsense but that doesn’t mean state lawmakers haven’t already lined up a series of bills in an effort to mitigate Trump edicts and GOP decisions. The latest roll out of the gutting of the EPA is the latest in a series of measures the legislature has responded to (up next will be Pacific Ocean National Monument of which Obama added several sites along the North Coast and are now threatened by a GOPer on the natural resources committee who wants to open protected areas to fishing) means state lawmaker will get as much Federal regulation guidelines into state law as possible. The same thing is happening with immigration, health care, emissions, labor and education.

    If we have to endure four years of this motherfucker at least we have the people in place to make to as fucking hard as possible for any of his decisions to have meaningful impacts.

    ReplyReply
  23. 23
    sherparick says:

    I love this! Within a week everyone will be thinking of Trumpster, the Republican Congress, and Conservative Industrial Infotainment Complex as the one huge DDOT attack that they are:-)!

    ReplyReply
  24. 24
    Corner Stone says:

    @LAO: “Remember, Mulvaney…it’s not a lie if you believe it.”
    Unfortunately for the Mickster there are actual studies, reports, dare I say facts, that prove feeding kids is good for outcomes and MoW saves the US Taxpayer money in addition to being an outright good.

    ReplyReply
  25. 25
    sherparick says:

    @Yarrow: The Mercers, the Koch brothers, and the other 100 or so politically active Republican Billionaires do really, really want their taxes cut (I a sure they would prefer not paying any taxes at all since by the beliefs of their Randian cult they should get all the wealth and income since they believe they create it with their magic wands). @Humboldtblue:

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  26. 26
    MattF says:

    @LAO: The ‘administration’ is composed of courtiers. Their goal is the ear of the Sovereign, who, Himself, is restless, erratic, and convinced of the Justice of his Holy Mission.

    ReplyReply
  27. 27
    Snarki, child of Loki says:

    @Corner Stone: “Soylent Green 2.0 here we come!”

    How else could Trump bring back those good factory jobs, really?

    He’ll get them all signed up in the “Human Resources” department.

    ReplyReply
  28. 28
    NobodySpecial says:

    @Mickee: Who the fuck is enriched in a ground war in Korea, exactly?

    Jesu on his hobby horse, some people.

    ReplyReply
  29. 29
    tobie says:

    @zhena gogolia: @Mickee: After threatening war with North Korea, Tillerson apparently cut his visit in South Korea short because he was exhausted. What gives? Is the excuse bullshit? Probably, but I’d think face-to-face discussions with South Korea would be essential right now. My head hurts from all this terrifying amateurishness.

    ReplyReply
  30. 30
    Betty Cracker says:

    @GrandJury: Shouldn’t you peddle your “Trump the Mastermind” theory at a consequential media outlet? Hint: it ain’t here.

    @Mickee: I long for the days when North Korea had cornered the market on kooky, nuclear-armed narcissist leaders with terrible hair.

    ReplyReply
  31. 31
    hovercraft says:

    @Yarrow:
    Who knows maybe even something featuring a golden shower or two, though given that he’s a germaphobe, that may not be true. They definitely have access to his business dealings around the world, which they’ve shared with their governments, they know his conflicts of interests better than we do.
    @lollipopguild:
    The fact that the Brits have practically done that, moving his visit to the Fall and placing it in the wilds of Scotland is a slap in the face. The nations hosting the G7 meetings I’m sure are just thrilled as hell, security is hard enough to begin with, adding Twitler to the mix is a nightmare.
    @randy khan:
    I bet that even when he attends, every time he walks into a room, everyone will stop talking. Moron that he is, he’ll think it’s because they are so awed by his presence. Remember when there were stories about heads of state jockeying to be next to Obama at all the photo ops? Somehow I don’t think that will be an issue. Fortunately for the world, Twitler and his minions don’t understand diplo speak, our friends can insult them to their faces and they’ll never even know.

    ReplyReply
  32. 32
    MattF says:

    @Snarki, child of Loki: Right– the Trumpian economic theory is to institute ‘humanitarian’ projects in place of Obama-era ‘vegetarian’ projects.

    ReplyReply
  33. 33
    Raoul says:

    If this Admin will lie about one of our closest and longest-standing allies, they’ll lie endlessly, prolifically, and very dangerously about the situation in Asia, and continue to move us towards war with N. Korea.

    I’m hoping Adam will stop in at some point (maybe after work this eve?) so we can hear his take on the seemingly terrible trip by Tillerson to the region.

    I take the notion that Rex is leaving early due to ‘fatigue’ as complete bullshit. The only thing he’s fatigued by is his realization that he’s been totally played by Bannon-Trump. He has no power at the crux of WH decision making and was shunted off over there for some bizarre show that the press wasn’t even allowed to cover.

    I assume Tillerson took the job thinking he’d get mad access to oil profits for his friends. But instead I think he got lubed by Bannon. And the nation will be all the worse for how he’s fvkd.

    ReplyReply
  34. 34
    amk says:

    limeys telling it like it is.

    can’t wait for colbear’s take on this.

    ReplyReply
  35. 35
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    @Yarrow:

    I don’t think Trump understands that our allies are not governed by the same laws about not spying on Americans that our own IC is

    Probably more like Trump simply refuses to accept any reality that’s not to his advantage. It’s really like Trump has the mind of a nine year old child.

    ReplyReply
  36. 36
    Mike in DC says:

    I don’t understand what military action would be “on the table” wrt NK. Hitting their rocket and/or nuke facilities? A decapitation strike ? That still leaves 13k artillery and rockets within firing range of Seoul, and doesn’t guarantee that they can’t use nukes. And we’ve got 30k troops there too.

    ReplyReply
  37. 37
    SFAW says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    Shouldn’t you peddle your “Trump the Mastermind” theory at a consequential media outlet? Hint: it ain’t here.

    It’s just the latest incarnation of the “All You Front-Pagers All Fucking Suck” avatar. Content is immaterial.

    ReplyReply
  38. 38
    SFAW says:

    @Enhanced Voting Techniques:

    It’s really like Trump has the mind of a nine year old child.

    You’re over by about six years.

    ReplyReply
  39. 39
    hovercraft says:

    @different-church-lady:
    LOL
    Oh my, and Theresa is one of his best friends out there, way to go Twitler, always making friends. Apparently Spicey never watched a WH briefing before, there’s a reason the spokespeople are so careful about how they say and phrase everything, and why they keep saying they’ll have to get back to us, their words have consequences. When May’s spokesperson is calling your words “nonsense”, you’ve stepped in it.

    ReplyReply
  40. 40
    Humboldtblue says:

    @NobodySpecial:

    Gun makers and shipping magnates, airplane makers and bomb makers, medical device makers and medicine producers, military gear makers and vehicle manufacturers, the folks who sell bullets, beans and hospital beds. The better question is who doesn’t profit from a war even in NK?

    ReplyReply
  41. 41
    Gelfling 545 says:

    You know, Trump should get rid of all those Secret Service guys. I bet they’re spying on him for Obama, right? Or maybe for Hillary.

    ReplyReply
  42. 42
    randy khan says:

    @hovercraft:

    I bet that even when he attends, every time he walks into a room, everyone will stop talking. Moron that he is, he’ll think it’s because they are so awed by his presence.

    I can totally see this.

    I bet they’re all practicing their Justin Trudeau handshake defenses, too.

    ReplyReply
  43. 43
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @tobie: American reporters in Seoul are saying that’s not true, FWIW. Now it’s a debate over whether he cancelled a dinner

    ReplyReply
  44. 44
    hovercraft says:

    @Corner Stone:
    Remember they do want a gun in every household so since the kids aren’t armed…………………

    ReplyReply
  45. 45
    SFAW says:

    @Corner Stone:

    that prove feeding kids is good for outcomes

    To whom are they being fed, and whose outcomes?

    ReplyReply
  46. 46
    LAO says:

    @Corner Stone: I get it. He and the administration and the RWNJ have allowed themselves to become willfully ignorant. I don’t question the fact that they are objectively wrong. I was merely making a semantic argument.

    ReplyReply
  47. 47
    tobie says:

    @Raoul:

    I assume Tillerson took the job thinking he’d get mad access to oil profits for his friends. But instead I think he got lubed by Bannon. And the nation will be all the worse for how he’s fvkd.

    I’ve been trying to figure whether Tillerson has been played by Trump and Bannon, or if he’s doing exactly what he intended to do: to weaken the State Department so Exxon/Mobil can do business with whomever the hell it likes whenever the hell it wants. These guys one core belief is “Government is the problem, not the solution.” They want to hollow out the state so private enterprise can take over everything. Maybe I’m reading this wrong but my gut sense is Tillerson isn’t being humiliated, he’s doing exactly what he wants to do.

    Fuck Jim Baker and Bob Gates for recommending this wholly unqualified creep for Secretary of State.

    ReplyReply
  48. 48
    Ceci n est pas mon nym says:

    Permanent damage has already been done on one issue: The rest of the world now knows that the American election system is capable of putting a guy like this in charge. Even if we got Obama’s third term next and all the unicorns that anyone could wish for (single-payer health care, government investment in trains — one of my hobby horses, restored funding in the arts and sciences, the end of gerrymandering, the end of voter suppression, a 9-vote liberal Supreme Court…) the question remains, for us and for the rest of the world?

    How do we prevent this from happening ever again? Can we?

    Looking at the examples of post-apartheid South Africa and post-Nazi Germany (yeah, I went there; we NEED to go there), I think that a start is some form of Truth Commission. We can’t just “move forward”, we’ve got to learn just how bad the crimes were.

    And yes, I’m envisioning a post-Trump era where American constitutional government has survived. It’s my basic optimism reasserting itself. After the elections, I started saying we’re about to see how strong some of our institutions are against authoritarianism. I believe they’re pretty damn strong, actually.

    ReplyReply
  49. 49
  50. 50
    PigDog says:

    They are utterly ridiculous and should be ignored,” GCHQ said in a statement.

    I know the Brits are better at the English language, but GCHQ clearly meant to say

    He is utterly ridiculous and should be ignored.

    ReplyReply
  51. 51
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    @sherparick:

    (I a sure they would prefer not paying any taxes at all since by the beliefs of their Randian cult they should get all the wealth and income since they believe they create it with their magic wands).

    hehe more like Trump isn’t the only “rich man” up to his ears in bankloans. Think about it; the amount of money these Masters of the Univers are fighting over should be chump change to them and only make sense if their loan payments are near their incomes.

    ReplyReply
  52. 52
    Raoul says:

    @Corner Stone:

    It’s still kind of starkly brutal to see a WH Budget Director stand there and completely lie about feeding poor kids and caring for the elderly.

    Absolutely. It shocked my generally stunned-numb conscience. But here’s the thing: what Mulvaney did (and the WH did by releasing this budget) is rip the mask of gauzy respectability off all the recent budgets watery-eyed fraud Ryan has proposed.

    His budgets were just as draconian, they just never ‘got around to’ detailing how his topline cuts woulda happened.

    More importantly, in the short term, is that we link the grandma-starving impacts of Trump’s budget to what is driving the AHCA plan by Republicans. They are the same thing, in slightly different segments of government service.

    What Trump wants to do to Meals on Wheels — and little old ladies! — Ryan effectively wants to do to your health care.

    ReplyReply
  53. 53
    Brachiator says:

    It’s quite another now that he’s got minions entrenched in positions of great power who are willing to squander the international prestige of the United States of America in a lame attempt to clean up after the boss.

    This is nuts. The Guardian claims that diplomats sent a strongly worded request for the administration to STFU.

    The White House has assured No 10 that allegations British intelligence spied on Donald Trump will not be repeated, Theresa May’s spokesman has said.

    But I’m not sure that Trump cares, and I am certain that he cannot constrain himself. I don’t know how long the congressional Republicans will continue to provide cover for him.

    @Mickee:

    Bigger story–Trump and Tillerson tag team to start a war with N. Korea this am. This is not just foreign policy, it is also part of Trump’s domestic jobs program. Take all the unemployed factory and coal workers who voted for him and enlist them/their children in the newly flush US military so they can serve as cannon fodder in wars that will enrich his buddies.

    A war with Norh Korea will not involve boots on the ground. It will be a nuclear war which will last a few minutes. We gotta hope that either North Korea is bluffing about its missile capability or that China can keep them from doing something stupid.

    ReplyReply
  54. 54
    catclub says:

    @Ridnik Chrome:

    It’s been over five months since the election

    November 9 – dec 9 1 month
    dec 9 – jan 9 2 months
    jan 9 – feb 9 3 months
    feb 9 – mar 9 4 months
    mar 9 – mar 17 ??

    ReplyReply
  55. 55
    SFAW says:

    @tobie:

    Fuck Jim Baker and Bob Gates

    No need to add the qualifiers.

    ReplyReply
  56. 56
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    @tobie: South Korea just told him to please just shut up and leave?

    ReplyReply
  57. 57
    Ceci n est pas mon nym says:

    @Gelfling 545: I can smile politely at this kind of joke, but actually I don’t want to see that kind of end. I want to see a peaceful, constitutional end to this mess. With Trump and as many of his cohorts as possible either in a padded room (I strongly suspect there is mental illness there, just a question as to whether he finally breaks down beyond the ability of his defenders to deny) or a jail cell.

    ReplyReply
  58. 58

    @Ridnik Chrome: Its the reality. The T brand is the Republican brand. Ignorant and mean and proud of it.

    ReplyReply
  59. 59
    Patricia Kayden says:

    So they apologized to Great Britain for lying about its intelligence service. That’s all good. Now will they also apologize to President Obama for lying about him spying on Trump? I guess not as long as he’s a Black man.

    ReplyReply
  60. 60
    bystander says:

    @Snarki, child of Loki: I swiftly saw what you did there,

    So, Trump has p/o’d two Intel communities. Gee, I’m sure there are no consequences to that.

    ReplyReply
  61. 61
    different-church-lady says:

    @hovercraft: Theresa is Trump’s friend the way a wolf is friends with a sheep: she’s licking her lips, knowing all she has to do is flatter him to his face and she can then stick the shiv in whenever she likes.

    I predict we’re right at the edge of the moment where nobody is afraid of Trump anymore.

    ReplyReply
  62. 62
    hovercraft says:

    @Corner Stone:
    You liberal coastal elites, ( Houston is coastal), there you go again believing in “data” and studies produced by other elites. In real America they rely on experience, just look at the achievements of red America, their kids are healthier, wealthier, and they live longer than you coastal elites. What’s that you say, not true? There you go again citing facts and statistics, we’ll go with our guts, it feels like we’re doing it right.

    ReplyReply
  63. 63
    MattF says:

    @Brachiator: I expect that soon we’ll be hearing the argument that we need to attack NK sooner rather than later because they will soon have enough strength to fend off any attack. Same argument pre-1914 Germany used wrt Russia.

    ReplyReply
  64. 64
    Yarrow says:

    @Raoul:

    I assume Tillerson took the job thinking he’d get mad access to oil profits for his friends. But instead I think he got lubed by Bannon. And the nation will be all the worse for how he’s fvkd.

    We’re all getting lubed by Bannon. Bannon is on record saying that he wants to destroy the state, destroy the establishment, to bring everything crashing down. The chaos he’s creating is in service of that. Along those lines, from Betty up top:

    I don’t think the Trump people are masterminds who are deliberately distracting us; I believe they are hapless shitlords who are stepping on their own dicks as they lurch from one catastrophic fuckup to another.

    I tend to think this way too but I think it’s smart to remember what both Bannon and Trump have said about wanting to destroy everything. Their fucking up the way things are traditionally and usually run are working to create the chaos and destruction they are on record as saying they want. It’s in our best interests to make sure they don’t destroy everything.

    ReplyReply
  65. 65
    different-church-lady says:

    @catclub: To be fair, February feels like two months.

    ReplyReply
  66. 66
    catclub says:

    @tobie:

    Tillerson apparently cut his visit in South Korea short because he was exhausted. What gives?

    Clinton and Kerry were both energizer bunnies State Department Travel-wise. Trump picked someone who is weaker than a girl.

    ReplyReply
  67. 67
    Corner Stone says:

    @LAO: Well, I’ll be. I never would have taken you for being an anti-semantite.

    ReplyReply
  68. 68
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Ridnik Chrome: Yeah, it sure feels like much longer than the 4 months since Orange Bigot was elected and it’s going to feel like much more than 4 years by the time we roll around to 2020. Huge Sigh.

    #Resist.

    ReplyReply
  69. 69
    Gelfling 545 says:

    @lollipopguild: Apparently, right here at home,
    Palm Beach wants him to stay away.

    ReplyReply
  70. 70
    tobie says:

    @catclub: Good one. I’ll remember that line.

    ReplyReply
  71. 71
    The Moar You Know says:

    Reports here are that we’ve apologized to the Brits. I have been listening to the BBC since 6am PDT. They have said specifically that there has been no apology nor even a hint that one is forthcoming.

    ReplyReply
  72. 72

    @catclub: Girls are not weak.

    ReplyReply
  73. 73
    catclub says:

    @Brachiator:

    enlist them/their children in the newly flush US military

    I suspect that added $54B in the budget is not for the troops. it is for military contractors and big ticket weapon systems.

    ReplyReply
  74. 74
    catclub says:

    @schrodingers_cat: exactly.

    ReplyReply
  75. 75
    different-church-lady says:

    @The Moar You Know: TRUMP: “Wait, you mean we have to tell them? I don’t know how this apology stuff works, I’ve never done it before!”

    ReplyReply
  76. 76
    Yarrow says:

    @Ceci n est pas mon nym:

    How do we prevent this from happening ever again? Can we?

    Looking at the examples of post-apartheid South Africa and post-Nazi Germany (yeah, I went there; we NEED to go there), I think that a start is some form of Truth Commission. We can’t just “move forward”, we’ve got to learn just how bad the crimes were

    Agreed. If we get out of this intact we need something like this. There has to be a reckoning.

    ReplyReply
  77. 77
    hovercraft says:

    @NobodySpecial:

    Who the fuck is enriched in a ground war in Korea, exactly?

    Halliburton, Blackwater or whatever it’s called now, DeVos’s brother may not be running it anymore but I’m sure he still owns a piece, basically a lot of GOP defense contractor donors. And most of all Twitler, he gets to be a “real” wartime president, not piddly wars like Iraq and Afghanistan, but a real war, with lots of tanks and aircraft carriers and stuff.We’ve “lost” too many wars, now it’s time for us to “win” and he’s just the man to lead us there. Since he fancies himself to be made in the mold of Patton, MacArthur and Eisenhower, rolled into one, he gets to be the big hero wartime president we’ve been missing for the last 60 years.

    I think this is actually the most dangerous aspect of this man are his feeling of inadequacy, and his need to prove to the world that he’s as great as he thinks he is. God help us.

    ReplyReply
  78. 78
    Gelfling 545 says:

    @Humboldtblue: whereas Cuomo is laying out cuts to various state health programs. I’m glad he’s not Paladino but, Jesus, We could use a real Democrat here.

    ReplyReply
  79. 79
    trollhattan says:

    @catclub: @catclub:
    Yep. Remember the Bush 1 peace dividend? Those were good times.

    Obama increased DoD spending eight years running. Somehow that became “decimating our military” and we now get hair-on-fire increases. Because the “alpha males are back.”

    ReplyReply
  80. 80
    Raoul says:

    @randy khan: Yes. And when we have a major international crisis (probably of our own making), we’ll see how that plays out.

    I’m imagining that if we have an other than cruise-missile war with N. Korea that Trump will have a very tough time finding partners. Britain and France will most likely tell him to fvk himself. Or maybe they’ll send over a hospital ship each as a sort of ‘show of support’ but I can’t imagine them providing lethal aid.

    He is poisonous and is destroying the existing world order. We’ll see how human society survives the realignment.

    And meanwhile, ocean coral is at its most intense crisis point. I’m sure other climate-related disasters are pending. Global cooperation is likely to be a casualty of Trump — though I retain some faint hope that he’s so toxic that the rest of the world decides we are the global pariah on climate they can all band together to resist and oppose. (That would give Trump a platform to claim his worldwide victimhood over, but so be it if it plays out that way).

    ReplyReply
  81. 81
    NobodySpecial says:

    @Humboldtblue: No, it doesn’t work like that. What happens is North Korea first turns Seoul into a parking lot, then probably shoots a nuke off at Japan if you’re unlucky. 30k US troops will do exactly squat in that country to pacify it, PLUS if US troops go over the border, China gets dragged into it on North Korea’s side. The economic upheaval from every single trade deal and multinational melting down as the number 1 and 2 economies in the world stop trading with each other tanks everything.

    Literally NO ONE makes money in a war scenario with WMD’s and two economies both so interconnected and so dominant. Talking crazy stupid talk is something they can do just fine without help from our side of the aisle, but exactly no one sane wants anything to do with a shooting war on the 38th.

    ReplyReply
  82. 82
    JMG says:

    @The Moar You Know: There has been no apology. It has been “explained” to GB that Spicer was only referring to media reports. In other words, it’s another lie.
    PS: House will vote on Trumpcare on Thursday. Wouldn’t do that if Ryan didn’t know it’ll pass. That’d be too incompetent even for him. I think we had better expect it will pass the Senate, too. In the end, Republicans always fall in line. It’s what authoritarians do.

    ReplyReply
  83. 83
    Brachiator says:

    @Humboldtblue:

    Gun makers and shipping magnates, airplane makers and bomb makers, medical device makers and medicine producers, military gear makers and vehicle manufacturers, the folks who sell bullets, beans and hospital beds. The better question is who doesn’t profit from a war even in NK?

    Maybe Adam can provide input on this, but some analyses suggest that China and North Korea prefer the status quo with North Korea, even though it means that they have to put up with the North Korean leader’s threats and rants.

    Unlike West Germany, neither China nor South Korea could absorb millions of starving refugees from the North (N Korea’s population is about 25 million, half that of the South). Curiously, though, it means that the world settles for the continuing near starvation of the mass of the people, and the sale of food and luxury goods to the sliver of the North Korean ruling class. It’s weird to think that currently there are some profiting from this ongoing trafficking in human misery.

    ReplyReply
  84. 84
    Yarrow says:

    @different-church-lady:

    I predict we’re right at the edge of the moment where nobody is afraid of Trump anymore.

    Agreed. I hope they’ll still be wary. The US has a massive military and the person in charge of deciding what they do is Republican President Donald Trump.

    ReplyReply
  85. 85
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Ceci n est pas mon nym: I think our constitutional government will survive too. I had my doubts at first, but as of now, it seems to me the Trump admin is too incompetent to pull off an authoritarian coup, even with control of the federal government and the majority of state houses. Trump is the weak link and will foil the would-be authoritarians’ plans through stupidity and fecklessness, IMO.

    However, I don’t think we’ll ever have what we need to fully recover, which is what you identified: a truth and reconciliation effort to make sure this sort of thing never happens again. In my most optimistic scenario, Trump & Co. will do a lot of damage — to the country but also to the Republican Party. This will usher in an era of saner governance, but the decline that Trump is a symptom of will continue to accelerate as a consequence of his actions in office, the loss of prestige he causes and the global knowledge that around half our citizens are drooling morons.

    Mystique is a critical component of global leadership. Ours is kaput now.

    ReplyReply
  86. 86
    hovercraft says:

    @different-church-lady:

    I predict we’re right at the edge of the moment where nobody is afraid of Trump anymore.

    I think they are afraid of him the way any sane person is afraid of an insane person, they are dangerous and unpredictable. Does anyone see him as a great mastermind playing eleventy dimensional chess, hell no, but buffoons can be just as dangerous, if not more so.

    ReplyReply
  87. 87
    SFAW says:

    @bystander:

    I swiftly saw what you did there,

    And you’re modest about it?

    ReplyReply
  88. 88
    Raoul says:

    @Enhanced Voting Techniques: He certainly has the emotional development of a nine year old (and that may be unfair to nine year olds!).

    ReplyReply
  89. 89
    Yarrow says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    Mystique is a critical component of global leadership. Ours is kaput now.

    Yep. And once gone you can’t get it back.

    Wildcard in all of this is climate change. In ten years we will see much more dramatic effects from it. We don’t know all of what will happen but it’s going to affect where people want to and can live, clean water, food availability. How that will affect nations going forward, we can’t totally predict.

    ReplyReply
  90. 90
    Brachiator says:

    @MattF:

    I expect that soon we’ll be hearing the argument that we need to attack NK sooner rather than later because they will soon have enough strength to fend off any attack.

    Yeah, possibly. Who knows what crazy crap we will hear from Trump and his enablers, no matter how implausible. But for now, I slightly fear more that N Korea will be the first to do something stupid. But yeah, Trump could start sipping a variation of Bibi Netanyahu’s “Iran needs to be bombed” juice in order to justify a strike against N Korea.

    ReplyReply
  91. 91
    Gelfling 545 says:

    @Ceci n est pas mon nym: Just following his reasoning to a possible conclusion. Nobody’s going to make any attempt on Trump. The usual suspects love him.

    ReplyReply
  92. 92
    SFAW says:

    @Brachiator:

    neither China nor South Korea could absorb millions of starving refugees from the North

    Not sure how you arrive at that conclusion, with respect to China at least. RoK is a different story, of course. China may not want to, but they probably could.

    ReplyReply
  93. 93
    rikyrah says:

    @tobie:

    I’ve been trying to figure whether Tillerson has been played by Trump and Bannon, or if he’s doing exactly what he intended to do: to weaken the State Department so Exxon/Mobil can do business with whomever the hell it likes whenever the hell it wants.

    He is the Secretary of Exxon. Period.

    ReplyReply
  94. 94
    SFAW says:

    @MattF:

    I expect that soon we’ll be hearing the argument that we need to attack NK sooner rather than later because they will soon have enough strength to fend off any attack.

    And Fox will promote stories about DPRK (or Kim Jong-Un) stocking up on Skittles.

    ReplyReply
  95. 95
    Raoul says:

    @tobie: I oscillate between these theories too. Of course, ultimately, each is terrible for different reasons. And even if the Marmalade Manwig were to quit or be shown the door, we’ll be stuck with the robber barons and smash-n-grabbers up and down the Admin till 2020.

    The mid-terms, g-d willing!, seem ever more important.

    ReplyReply
  96. 96
    Yarrow says:

    @JMG:

    PS: House will vote on Trumpcare on Thursday. Wouldn’t do that if Ryan didn’t know it’ll pass. That’d be too incompetent even for him.

    Ugh.

    I think we had better expect it will pass the Senate, too. In the end, Republicans always fall in line. It’s what authoritarians do.

    I don’t know. A lot of Republicans have been signaling that they don’t want even to have to vote on it. We’ll see how that plays out.

    ReplyReply
  97. 97

    I am looking forward to this movie, Begum Jaan. Set around the time of British India’s partition. The premise is that the Radcliffe line passed through Begum Jaan’s brothel, the movie is about the partition from the POV of those marginalized and on the fringes of the society.
    The partition was bloody and the unspoken story was about violence perpetrated against women, not just by the so-called enemy but also by their own families. Because in a traditional society a women signifies honor of her men and family, she is better dead than “dishonored”.
    Click CC to see the English captions, however they do not do justice to the fierce dialog in Hindi.

    ReplyReply
  98. 98
    MattF says:

    @SFAW: In fact, NK has had a couple of good harvests lately, so the refugees won’t be starving. However, they may well be radioactive.

    ReplyReply
  99. 99
    Yarrow says:

    @schrodingers_cat:

    Because in a traditional society a women signifies honor of her men and family, she is better dead than “dishonored”.

    Pretty common theme in all traditional societies. Patriarchy for all.

    ReplyReply
  100. 100
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Yarrow: I vacillate between “we’re fucked” and “they’re fucked”. I agree that Republicans tend to fall in line, but between people like Rand Paul and Ted Cruz (I think) starting to wonder if they can successfully primary trumpy, and House members who are easily spooked, and the pile-on of bad publicity, from Ryan Care to cutting meals on wheels, maybe things are falling apart behind the scenes.

    On the third hand, as somebody tweeted about Collins’ announcement that she’s firmly against it, I’ll believe it when I see it.

    ETA: PS: House will vote on Trumpcare on Thursday. Wouldn’t do that if Ryan didn’t know it’ll pass. That’d be too incompetent even for him.

    Didn’t Boehner have to cancel more than one scheduled vote at the last minute? Ryan has Cruz, Paul and Cotton lobbying hard against the bill and arguably and even less predictable caucus?

    ReplyReply
  101. 101
    Pogonip says:

    @NobodySpecial: Since no one makes money in that scenario, it won’t happen. But a president–any president–can’t very well say “I’m not going to attack [country]” or “DOD exists to prop up what’s left of our economy, and a real war, especially with China, would ruin that.” So he makes grrr-grrr woof-woof noises in public and in private gets on the horn and negotiates with the Chinese. Who in their turn must negotiate because who would buy all that junk if Americans didn’t? So do not fear. If I can figure this out, so can Jared Kushner and Steve Bannon.

    ReplyReply
  102. 102
    hovercraft says:

    @Gelfling 545:
    Has he heard of Camp David, a government owned property quite close and convenient to DC? As he himself lamented when president blackety black was in office, presidential travel is expensive, and this lot between the kids traveling, the first lady living separately and Twitler’s inability to stay in the White House is costing us a fortune. Funny how Obama was a shiftless layabout for playing golf, and yet this asshole can’t read anything, watches TV all day, doesn’t have time for any of his briefings other than the ones he gets from FOX, and yet needs a breather every weekend to recharge.

    The places where he is welcome are steadily dwindling. Soon he’ll need to chopper onto his properties, bypassing the throngs of protesters lining the streets, he can look down on them from on high and pretend they are fans.

    ReplyReply
  103. 103
    NorthLeft12 says:

    Betty, I think you nailed the Deadbeat Donald administration with the following;

    They are hapless shitlords who are stepping on their own dicks as they lurch from one catastrophic fuckup to another.

    I started to type that this is unbelievable, but hell no, if you were at all conscious during the two years that Deadbeat Donald ran for President this performance was completely expected. Kudos to Trump for delivering on another campaign promise…….turning the US government into a laughingstock.

    The sad part of this is that nobody, except the truly deranged and hateful, are really laughing.

    ReplyReply
  104. 104

    @Yarrow: Yes, this has been something alluded to in passing never faced head on. I am glad that these stories are being told. Women on both sides of the border have been instrumental in collecting these oral histories.
    Ayesha Jalal from Pakistan, Urvashi Butalia from India and others like them.
    ETA: Radcliffe line did actually run through homes, brave Sir Cyril never even bothered to visit the places that were effected, he just drew lines on a map.
    Radcliffe Line separates Punjab in two halves.

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  105. 105
    MomSense says:

    @Mike in DC:

    Yeah I can’t imagine any kind of strategy on our part other than gross incompetence and arrogance. This seems like a really dangerous and insane path.

    ReplyReply
  106. 106
    SFAW says:

    @Yarrow:

    I don’t know. A lot of Republicans have been signaling that they don’t want even to have to vote on it. We’ll see how that plays out.

    Someone speculated that Turtle would let a couple of the squishes vote against it, but not enough to put them below the Pence-voting threshold. It’s been rare that the Rethugs have punted on the chance to fuck over as many poors (etc) as they can, but I’ll be happy to be worng on this.

    ReplyReply
  107. 107
    Corner Stone says:

    @Yarrow: Kang: Patriarchy for all.
    [crowd boos]
    Kang: Very well, no patriarchy for anyone.
    [crowd boos]
    Kang: Hmm… Patriarchy for some, miniature American flags for others.
    [crowd cheers and waves miniature flags]

    ReplyReply
  108. 108
    Yarrow says:

    @schrodingers_cat: I watched the trailer. Very interesting. The lead character is a very striking presence. Good for the team willing to make the film and give stories like this publicity.

    I know the line through the Punjab was arbitrary. Tearing family and lives apart was never considered. People pay the price to this day.

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  109. 109
    Ridnik Chrome says:

    @catclub: See? It’s got me so messed up I’ve forgotten how to count.

    @schrodingers_cat: No disagreement here.

    ReplyReply
  110. 110
    catclub says:

    @hovercraft:

    Halliburton, Blackwater or whatever it’s called now,

    I was going to guess whoever competes with Samsung and Hyundai. Maybe we would both be right.

    ReplyReply
  111. 111
    Corner Stone says:

    @SFAW:

    And you’re modest about it?

    You do have to admit, it’s one heck of a proposal for handling the situation.

    ReplyReply
  112. 112
    Raoul says:

    @hovercraft: Maybe we can just have a Grenada scale moment? Y’know, Ronnie’s famous Predawn Vertical Insertion.

    ReplyReply
  113. 113
    tobie says:

    @Raoul: You’re right that this is probably a difference without a distinction. Whether Tillerson’s hands are tied or he’s working actively to demolish the State Department doesn’t really matter in the end. War now has priority over diplomacy. @hovercraft: The idea that Trump wants to be a MacArthur or Patton is truly frightening…I’d go so far as to say panic-inducing.

    ReplyReply
  114. 114
    Yarrow says:

    @SFAW:

    Someone speculated that Turtle would let a couple of the squishes vote against it, but not enough to put them below the Pence-voting threshold. It’s been rare that the Rethugs have punted on the chance to fuck over as many poors (etc) as they can, but I’ll be happy to be worng on this.

    Yeah, could be. But it’s going to bring a lot of bad results and soon. Even employer healthcare is going to be negatively affected. I am not sure they want to take this on. We’ll see.

    Wonder if Ryan has put the voting date out there aspirationally. Trying to get people to pick a side. That kind of thing. He doesn’t seem all that skilled at locking down votes.

    ReplyReply
  115. 115
    catclub says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    and the pile-on of bad publicity, from Ryan Care to cutting meals on wheels,

    Somebody is getting a promotion for that (virtually non-existent) tie-in.

    ReplyReply
  116. 116
    SFAW says:

    @Corner Stone:

    You do have to admit, it’s one heck of a proposal for handling the situation.

    I rish I had thought of it.

    ETA: Yes, I know it technically wasn’t about them. But considering what England did, it’s not that much different.

    ReplyReply
  117. 117
    hovercraft says:

    @JMG:

    Wouldn’t do that if Ryan didn’t know it’ll pass. That’d be too incompetent even for him. I think we had better expect it will pass the Senate, too. In the end, Republicans always fall in line. It’s what authoritarians do.

    The budget last year, Fiscal Year 2017, they planned to vote but didn’t.

    May 26, 2016,
    The GOP-controlled House on Thursday was unable to pass an energy and water spending bill after a Democratic amendment to the legislation protecting some LGBT workers from discrimination was added to the bill Wednesday night.

    The bill failed 112-305 with 130 Republicans voting against the bill and only 6 Democrats voting to pass the spending measure.

    Paul Ryan just like Boehner before him has been a terrible speaker, turns out that one of the very things they campaigned on and won on, getting rid of earmarks, was key to leadership keeping their members in line, once they got rid of them there was no mechanism to control their member. Yes committee assignments are useful, but so many republicans are wingnuts that they see pissing off and being punished by leadership as a badge of honor.
    Ryan has been inept, fortunately for him, the election and the media giving him a break because it’s not his fault that his party is cray cray, have kept his incompetence from the spotlight.

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  118. 118
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    OT: you can just imagine how much fun these guys were in college

    Adam Cancryn @ adamcancryn
    House Speaker Paul Ryan to Rich Lowry on capping Medicaid funding: “We’ve been dreaming of this since you and I were drinking out of a keg”

    Matthew Yglesias‏Verified account @ mattyglesias 7m7 minutes ago
    Imagine your youthful dream being denying health care services to the poor children, the elderly, and the disabled.Matthew Yglesias added,

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  119. 119
    SFAW says:

    @Yarrow:

    Yeah, could be. But it’s going to bring a lot of bad results and soon. Even employer healthcare is going to be negatively affected

    Feature, not bug?

    ReplyReply
  120. 120
    bemused says:

    I’m actually amazed that WH apologized to GCHQ and in under 24 hours too. I wonder who was the realist there that said fix this FU ASAP. Twitler probably still doesn’t understand what the fuss is all about.

    ReplyReply
  121. 121
    janeform says:

    Defiled is a perfect description of what the Cheeto has done to the White House. Every time I think of him living there, or see photos of him in the oval office, it makes me sick. Blech. Happy will be the day when he’s evicted.

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  122. 122
    Yarrow says:

    @SFAW: Sure. But the majority of Americans have health insurance through employers. They don’t think that anything happening with healthcare in Congress can affect them. It will. And when it gets worse, it’ll be TrumpCare and Trump and the Republicans will own it.

    Some of the Republicans in Congress see this issue. They are the ones I’m not sure want to have their vote on the line for it. Is Trump popular enough, will he be popular enough for them to risk a vote for this bill? Will the Republicans have to own it and be blamed for it? Is it smart to risk a vote then? That kind of thing.

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  123. 123
    rikyrah says:

    @hovercraft:

    Has he heard of Camp David, a government owned property quite close and convenient to DC?

    He hasn’t found a way to get paid for Camp David, as we are for that horrid place in Florida.

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  124. 124
    hovercraft says:

    Someone wnt to be primaried, or maybe he’s retiring? He was one of Boehner’s closest allies, so maybe he’s had enough of the crazy.

    By Matt Shuham TPM Published March 17, 2017, 11:34 AM EDT

    A Republican congressman said Friday that, without “pretty compelling proof,” President Donald Trump should apologize to former President Barack Obama for Trump’s unsubstantiated claim that Obama ordered surveillance on him during the 2016 campaign.

    “I see no indication that that’s true,” Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK) told CNN’s Manu Raju of Trump’s charge. “And so it’s not a charge I would have ever made.”

    “Frankly, unless you can produce some pretty compelling proof, then I think the President, you know, President Obama is owed an apology in that regard. If he didn’t do it, we shouldn’t be reckless in accusations that he did,” Cole told reporters.

    Trump has offered no evidence for his claim, though he referenced news reports that used the word “wiretap,” a term he used, in an interview Wednesday.

    White House press secretary Sean Spicer did the same on Thursday, including reading from a report accusing the British intelligence service of providing Obama with surveillance on Trump.

    The U.S. government has since apologized for the claim against Britain’s GCHQ.

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  125. 125
    randy khan says:

    @JMG:

    Where did you see the news about scheduling of the vote?

    FWIW, I wouldn’t assume much of anything about how a vote is going to come out. They can schedule a vote and then pull it, and that’s been pretty common with the Rs in charge in the House. It also has to go through the Rules Committee, which supposedly is going to be making a lot of changes. (None of this affects how important it is to keep the pressure up on the bill – it’s probably more important than ever.)

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  126. 126
    randy khan says:

    @SFAW:

    The Senate is a funny place. Most Senators think they are closer to gods than humans, and McC may not have as much control over them as he would like.

    ReplyReply
  127. 127
    hovercraft says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:
    They are ghouls, monstrous ghouls. I hope they all burn slowly and eternally in hell, being gang raped daily by minataurs.

    ReplyReply
  128. 128
    Yarrow says:

    @randy khan: Google it. It’s all over the news. Here’s a Politico article on it.

    @hovercraft:

    “Frankly, unless you can produce some pretty compelling proof, then I think the President, you know, President Obama is owed an apology in that regard. If he didn’t do it, we shouldn’t be reckless in accusations that he did,” Cole told reporters.

    It seems he thinks Obama is still president.

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  129. 129
    The Moar You Know says:

    The U.S. government has since apologized for the claim against Britain’s GCHQ.

    @hovercraft: Again: they have not. The US has said that such a claim will not be made publicly again, which is quite a bit different than an apology.

    ReplyReply
  130. 130
    rikyrah says:

    @tobie:

    War now has priority over diplomacy.

    Pitiful.

    ReplyReply
  131. 131
  132. 132
    GrandJury says:

    @Betty Cracker:He’s no mastermind but he sure has you wrapped around his teeny tiny finger.

    ReplyReply
  133. 133
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Yarrow: It is in the undeniably legitimate national security interest of a number of our NATO allies to know precisely how deep the Donald/Vlad rabbit hole goes, and they are not restricted by US law at all.

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  134. 134
    hovercraft says:

    @Yarrow:
    No it’s customary to address people by their former titles, without adding “former”. I’ve always liked Tom Cole, he’s what used to be a conservative, so I disagree with him on everything, but he’s a relatively normal GOPer of old, not crazy.

    ReplyReply
  135. 135
    rikyrah says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Adam Cancryn @ adamcancryn
    House Speaker Paul Ryan to Rich Lowry on capping Medicaid funding: “We’ve been dreaming of this since you and I were drinking out of a keg”

    Matthew Yglesias‏Verified account @ mattyglesias 7m7 minutes ago
    Imagine your youthful dream being denying health care services to the poor children, the elderly, and the disabled.Matthew Yglesias added

    ,

    SOCIOPATHS.

    THE.ENTIRE.LOT.OF.THEM

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  136. 136
    rikyrah says:

    Milwaukee bus driver takes in young child wandering streets in the middle of the night. “I’m happy I made that stop” https://t.co/1y4kHczizk pic.twitter.com/nwp51X8Xju

    — ABC News (@ABC) March 16, 2017

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  137. 137
    Raoul says:

    @Betty Cracker: Along those lines, I think of England circa 1950-1985. The end of the British Empire led to two generations of the British Isles being an economic weakling and a rather dour and depressed place.

    Oh, it still had charms. I remember visiting in 1980 and thinking the Punks were sooo cool (I was 15), and the dusty and fusty British Museum was an all-day stay. But I also recall the general sense that the US was so not nearly as beat down (this was at the end of the Carter presidency).

    If we don’t blow up the world, we’ll probably make it thru this evil clown show. But our global comeuppance has probably now been baked in. I’m not entirely unhappy with that last bit.

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  138. 138

    @Yarrow: Vidya Balan was awesome in the trailer. Hindi film industry is teeming with talent. Kangana Ranaut, Parineeti Chopra, Swara Bhaskar, Kalki Koechlin, Priyanka Chopra they are all pretty amazing.
    IRL Vidya Balan’s background is far from the lead character’s as can be, like say a southerner playing someone from Downeast Maine.

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  139. 139
    rikyrah says:

    @Yarrow:

    Is Trump popular enough, will he be popular enough for them to risk a vote for this bill?

    He’s at 39% -in frigging GALLUP, and it hasn’t even been 100 days.

    They really think a war with North Korea is gonna boost his numbers?

    PHUCK.OUTTA.HERE.

    ReplyReply
  140. 140
    danielx says:

    @Snarki, child of Loki:

    Soylent Green is people!

    ReplyReply
  141. 141
    hovercraft says:

    @The Moar You Know:
    It’s an ellipsis “apology” the media knows that getting a real one is nigh on impossible so they are calling this an apology so we can move on, nothing to see here folks, nothing to see, the WH did not piss off our great friend Great Britain.

    ReplyReply
  142. 142
    Corner Stone says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Adam Cancryn @ adamcancryn
    House Speaker Paul Ryan to Rich Lowry on capping Medicaid funding: “We’ve been dreaming of this since you and I were drinking out of a keg”

    Matthew Yglesias‏Verified account @ mattyglesias 7m7 minutes ago
    Imagine your youthful dream being denying health care services to the poor children, the elderly, and the disabled.Matthew Yglesias added,

    Mark: “Hand me one, willya Paulie? Man I been dreaming about getting to third with Chrissy this weekend.”
    Ricky: “She’s hot, man. Me, I been talking to coach about maybe working my way to first squad this year. How bout you, Paulie? What you dreamin’ of?”
    Lil ZEGS: “Oh, nothing much. Just the utter destruction of Western Society and the complete shredding of Civic care for children, elderly and the poor. Anyone need another round?”
    Mark: “I’m good.”
    Ricky: “Uh, yeah, good here.”

    ReplyReply
  143. 143
    Jeffro says:

    @MomSense:

    Yeah I can’t imagine any kind of strategy on our part other than gross incompetence and arrogance. This seems like a really dangerous and insane path

    Dangerous and insane indeed. We’re dealing with folks for whom there is no downside to fucking up tremendously – they don’t even care about their own base, they are incredibly removed (by nature of having megabucks) from any consequences of their actions, and in the background, ever-present, is their desire to burn everything down anyway.

    Not good.

    ReplyReply
  144. 144
    rikyrah says:

    Beleaguered Secretary of State raises stakes with North Korean warning
    03/17/17 10:18 AM
    By Steve Benen
    All is not well at the State Department, which in the Donald Trump era, has found itself marginalized and ignored. This week, the White House announced plans to slash the State Department’s budget – a move that Secretary of State Rex Tillerson inexplicably embraced, further demoralizing the department.

    As Rachel noted on the show last night, Tillerson told reporters yesterday that the administration believes it can afford to dramatically cut the State Department’s funding because “there will be fewer military conflicts that the U.S. will be directly engaged in.”

    It’s an odd response. For one thing, investing in diplomacy helps reduce the chances of military engagement. For another, the Trump administration is pushing for vastly larger spending at the Pentagon, apparently in anticipation of new military operations.

    ReplyReply
  145. 145
    danielx says:

    @SFAW:

    Yeah, but the three year old has better hair.

    ReplyReply
  146. 146
    rikyrah says:

    A rare ally of the GOP health care plan has its own motivations
    03/17/17 10:51 AM—UPDATED 03/17/17 11:36 AM
    By Steve Benen

    The Republican health care plan is noticeably short on allies. Not long after the GOP’s American Health Care Act was unveiled, it was denounced by the American Medical Association, the American Nurses Association, the American Hospital Association, AARP, the American Cancer Society, the American Psychiatric Association, a wide variety of governors, and consumer advocates.

    With this in mind, the White House was understandably delighted last week when Anthem, one of the nation’s largest private health insurers, expressed vague support for key elements of the bill, saying the Republican plan “addresses the challenges immediately facing the individual market.”

    ……………………………………………………………………

    The New York Times’ David Leonhardt shed some useful light on a possible answer to that question.

    It turns out that one of the bill’s few high-profile fans may not even support it on the merits. Instead, Anthem appears to be providing political cover to the administration at the same time that company officials are lobbying the administration for a favorable decision on another matter. It’s pretty brazen.

    Here are the details: Anthem, which is based in Indiana, is already the largest insurer in California, Kentucky, Virginia and elsewhere. Two years ago, its chief executive, Joseph Swedish, made a big bet. He decided to put public pressure on Cigna, another major insurer, to accept a merger. Eventually, Swedish succeeded, and Anthem agreed to pay $48 billion to buy its rival.

    But the Obama administration’s Justice Department filed suit against the merger, arguing that it would force consumers to pay higher prices. Last month, a federal judge agreed and blocked the merger. Cigna isn’t happy with the deal anymore either and has filed a $14 billion lawsuit against Anthem. None of it makes Swedish look good.

    ReplyReply
  147. 147
    Pogonip says:

    @Corner Stone: Don’t blame me, I voted for Kodos!

    ReplyReply
  148. 148
    randy khan says:

    @Yarrow:

    Thanks. My Google Fu failed me on this one. I did look, just apparently badly.

    ReplyReply
  149. 149
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Brachiator:

    A war with Norh Korea will not involve boots on the ground. It will be a nuclear war which will last a few minutes. We gotta hope that either North Korea is bluffing about its missile capability or that China can keep them from doing something stupid.

    This is true, and if the NKs do this, they will lob nukes at Honshu, just for the hell of it. Both Koreas hate the Japanese.

    ReplyReply
  150. 150
    Jeffro says:

    Btw I hope you folks are sending this article far and wide – it certainly needs as big an audience as possible:

    Robert (dad) and Rebekah (daughter) Mercer: the Blow-It-All-Up Billionaires.

    Makes a great case for some EXTREME campaign finance reform, that’s for sure!

    Billionaire Randian backers + Bannon, pulling Trump’s strings = explanation for 99% of what we have seen since November.

    ReplyReply
  151. 151
    Jeffro says:

    @rikyrah:

    As Rachel noted on the show last night, Tillerson told reporters yesterday that the administration believes it can afford to dramatically cut the State Department’s funding because “there will be fewer military conflicts that the U.S. will be directly engaged in.”

    It’s an odd response. For one thing, investing in diplomacy helps reduce the chances of military engagement. For another, the Trump administration is pushing for vastly larger spending at the Pentagon, apparently in anticipation of new military operations.

    it’s not an odd response, it’s a lie.

    ReplyReply
  152. 152
    danielx says:

    @NobodySpecial:

    Who the fuck is enriched in a ground war in Korea, exactly?

    One can reasonably assume that General Dynamics, Boeing, Lockheed and General Electric, among others, would do very well. And if a few million Koreans get wiped out, well, making omelettes is always hard on a few eggs.

    ReplyReply
  153. 153
    Brachiator says:

    @schrodingers_cat:

    I am looking forward to this movie, Begum Jaan. Set around the time of British India’s partition. The premise is that the Radcliffe line passed through Begum Jaan’s brothel, the movie is about the partition from the POV of those marginalized and on the fringes of the society.

    This looks interesting. I understand that it is a remake of a 2015 Bengali film Rajkahini.

    Vidya Balan comes across as fiercely intelligent in the scenes from the trailer. Also very interesting that the films feature women in prominent roles.

    ReplyReply
  154. 154
    danielx says:

    @hovercraft:

    There is very little gold leaf and such at Camp David, hence not up to Trumpian standards of decor.

    ReplyReply
  155. 155
    rikyrah says:

    Voters in urban areas discover what they ‘have to lose’ under Trump
    03/17/17 11:20 AM
    By Steve Benen
    Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson was in Detroit yesterday, visiting one of the cabinet agency’s field offices, and visiting a local restaurant funded by the Motor City Match program, which as CNBC reported, “pairs businesses in Detroit with available real estate options” and “helps businesses locate and thrive in Detroit by providing competitive grants, loans and counseling to building owners and business owners.”

    Carson pointed to the program as “a wonderful example of community revitalization at work.”

    And while that may be true, Motor City Match receives federal funding through HUD’s Community Development Block Grant program. As CNBC’s report added, under Donald Trump’s budget, the Community Development Block Grant program would be eliminated entirely.

    In other words, this “wonderful example of community revitalization at work” probably would not exist if Carson’s boss had his way.

    NBC News’ Jane C. Timm did a great job yesterday noting just how far the Trump White House intends to go targeting programs like these intended to benefit urban communities.

    Released Thursday, the budget calls for $6.2 billion of cuts to the nation’s Housing and Urban Development agency, putting the already strapped federal housing authority under even bigger strain. […]

    To slash an additional 1.1 billion from the HUD budget, Trump’s proposal eliminates the HOME Investment Partnerships Program, the Choice Neighborhoods program, and the Self-help Homeownership Opportunity program, SHOP. The administration calls these “lower priority programs.”

    ReplyReply
  156. 156
    germy says:

    @danielx: drumpf publicly criticized camp david.

    It’s too rustic for him, he has said. Not his style.

    The idea that Trump, like Kennedy, might in good faith seek the advice of a predecessor seems impossible to imagine; there does not appear to have been any serious consultation regarding the troubled raid in Yemen, on January 29th, which left one American seal and some number of Yemeni civilians dead, after which Trump said that the buck did not stop here, with the President, but over there, with the generals. Such a meeting certainly would not happen at Camp David, given Trump’s comments on the retreat: “Camp David is very rustic, it’s nice, you’d like it,” he said. “You know how long you’d like it? For about 30 minutes.” That comment, in the scheme of things, seems at first like no big deal—just another sneering observation on the scale of his sneering observations about the decline of “Celebrity Apprentice,” his former TV show.

    http://www.newyorker.com/news/.....op-himself

    ReplyReply
  157. 157

    @Brachiator: The director says its adapted with more focus on Begum Jaan’s life than the geopolitics which was the focus of his (Srijit Mukherji’s) Bengali movie.

    ReplyReply
  158. 158
    ksmiami says:

    @Jeffro:
    for anyone in NYC, I will pay you to post mean notes at the Mercer daughter “Ruby et Violette” cookie store. Their business should just dry up.

    ReplyReply
  159. 159
    Just One More Canuck says:

    @Corner Stone: don’t blame me, I voted for Kodos

    ReplyReply
  160. 160
    ksmiami says:

    @janeform: Not evicted. Dragged out in irons and orange jumpsuits.

    ReplyReply
  161. 161

    @Mike in DC:

    I’m guessing Trump doesn’t have properties in Seoul…

    ReplyReply
  162. 162
    Yarrow says:

    @randy khan: Happens to the best of us.

    @schrodingers_cat: Interesting backstory. I don’t know much about any of that. Not quite sure where to see those films. Honestly, I don’t make a lot of effort to see any films these days. Can’t remember the last time I’ve been to a movie.

    @hovercraft: I understand the customary title. It’s the way he said it. “The President, President Obama.” As if he had to correct himself that Obama isn’t “The President” at the moment. I bet he, along with a lot of other people, still wish Obama was president.

    ReplyReply
  163. 163
    ArchTeryx says:

    @Gelfling 545 @Yarrow: It’s stuff like this that make me think my goose is honestly cooked unless a miracle occurs. I’m of the opinion that a) Republicans will fall in line, because authoritarians always do. It’ll pass both houses. It’s a done deal, no matter how much whistling past the graveyard occurs by folks who don’t have an e-ticket to it yet. b) Cuomo will respond by slashing the Medicaid rolls, because Medicaid Expansion would cost the state more then 8 billion dollars to maintain solely on state dollars.

    ReplyReply
  164. 164

    @Brachiator: I loved the last line of the trailer, when the government official tells her that she has one month to vacate the premises. She says, Sir, I too can count a month, it leaves me bloodied every time.

    ReplyReply
  165. 165

    @Yarrow: Google Play and Itunes after the DVD release. Netflix for older movies.

    ReplyReply
  166. 166
    ArchTeryx says:

    @Corner Stone: The Kodos vs. Kang bit does have some good satire in it, but the root message is “both parties are the same” and thus the joke isn’t funny any more. This wasn’t an election of Kodos vs. Kang, but enough lefties thought it was to give us Trump.

    ReplyReply
  167. 167
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @hovercraft:

    this asshole can’t read anything, watches TV all day, doesn’t have time for any of his briefings other than the ones he gets from FOX, and yet needs a breather every weekend to recharge.

    This is a calumny, hovercraft, and patently unfair!

    “Well, you know, I love to read,” Trump said. “Actually, I’m looking at a book, I’m reading a book, I’m trying to get started. Every time I do about a half a page, I get a phone call that there’s some emergency, this or that. But we’re going to see the home of Andrew Jackson today in Tennessee and I’m reading a book on Andrew Jackson.”

    Trump added, “I love to read. I don’t get to read very much, Tucker, because I’m working very hard on lots of different things, including getting costs down. The costs of our country are out of control. But we have a lot of great things happening, we have a lot of tremendous things happening.”

    ReplyReply
  168. 168
    Yarrow says:

    @schrodingers_cat: That was a great line.

    ReplyReply
  169. 169
    Yarrow says:

    @schrodingers_cat: Thanks. I might check some of them out. I don’t have a problem with subtitles, although sometimes they don’t really do the dialogue justice.

    ReplyReply
  170. 170
    hovercraft says:

    @The Moar You Know:
    At this point who knows what the hell is going on?
    Via TPM

    The White House on Friday said that it never intended to lend credence to a Fox News commentator’s baseless remarks supporting President Donald Trump’s claim he’d been wiretapped by reading those remarks aloud in a press briefing.

    Press Secretary Sean Spicer on Thursday read a series of media reports that he said backed up Trump’s wild allegation, including Fox News commentator Andrew Napolitano’s claim that GCHQ, Britain’s spy agency, eavesdropped on Trump on former President Barack Obama’s behalf.

    The GCHQ issued an angry denial of that “utterly ridiculous” allegation, and the U.S. government reportedly apologized to British Prime Minister Theresa May for Spicer repeating the claim.

    The White House said in a statement Friday that Spicer was “simply pointing to public reports, not endorsing any specific story,” according to a pool report.

    From Yahoo

    The Telegraph that both Mr Spicer and General McMaster, the US National Security Adviser, have apologised over the claims. “The apology came direct from them,” a source said.

    General McMaster contacted Sir Mark Lyall Grant, the Prime Minister’s National Security adviser, to apologise for the comments. Mr Spicer conveyed his apology through Sir Kim Darroch, Britain’s US ambassador.

    As you point out, the British are sticking with the White House has promised to not repeat the allegations, while the Americans are saying they’ve apologized. Can a leaked tape/transcript of the conversations be far behind?

    ReplyReply
  171. 171
    Mike J says:

    There’s a hed that’s gonna sting:

    The Leader of the Free World Meets Donald Trump

    ReplyReply
  172. 172
    Jeffro says:

    A note about “Serious Concerns”…

    It seems like I keep seeing news items and tweets and emails where some GOP congressman or another has “serious concerns” about the Trumpcare bill…that he just voted to approve out of committee. Or where some GOP senator (like Walnuts) has “serious concerns” about Trumpov’s Russian ties…and then does nothing to get to the bottom of it. Or even media figures noting that there are “serious concerns” about Jeff Sessions lying, Tom Price lying, Sean Spicer lying, and Trump himself lying.

    “Serious concerns” are bullshit. They’re weasel words. They’re a way for these folks to pretend to look like they’re on top of things and looking out for their voters when in fact they are doing the opposite. “Serious concerns” are still going to get people booted off of Obamacare, get their Meals on Wheels cut, keep Trump and Russia laughing all the way to the (Deutsche) Bank, and so on.

    So…whenever you see nonsense about “serious concerns”: take a second to tweet back, or write the author of the news piece, or call/email the news organization itself, or push back in some way. Let folks know, as loudly and publicly as possible, that these “serious concerns” are worth about as much as all the post-shooting “thoughts and prayers” that pop up everywhere, and accomplish nothing.

    “Serious concerns”…grrrrrr….

    ReplyReply
  173. 173
    Yarrow says:

    @Mike J: That. Is. Awesome.

    ReplyReply
  174. 174
    dmsilev says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: His word salad is 100% iceberg lettuce.

    ReplyReply
  175. 175
    Corner Stone says:

    @ArchTeryx: Well, I have to say kodos to you for taking a twenty year old Simpson’s bit and tying it into where we are now.

    ReplyReply
  176. 176
    ArchTeryx says:

    @Jeffro: Yep. “Serious Concerns” are simply code for “I’ll say I’m against it but vote for it in the dead of night anyway, and hope that my constituents that subsequently get booted off healthcare blame the Democrats like they always do.”

    ReplyReply
  177. 177
    ArchTeryx says:

    @Corner Stone: Some jokes age better then others. After Bush The Younger and now Trump, that one hasn’t aged well at all, and I’ve taken up the habit of calling out anyone who uses it in service of “but both parties are the same!”. It’s a hobby of mine I’ve taken up. We all have to have hobbies to distract ourselves on occasion.

    ReplyReply
  178. 178
    liberal says:

    @ArchTeryx:

    …but enough lefties thought it was to give us Trump.

    Evidence?

    ReplyReply
  179. 179
    hovercraft says:

    @SiubhanDuinne:

    including getting costs down. The costs of our country are out of control.

    We are not a fucking business, we don’t have “costs” we don’t have profits,we have expiditures to build a stronger society, we are a nation, constantly trying to build a stronger, healthier, more productive nation. Not some goddamn company they’ve taken over that they can strip it down for parts and then just walk away. When assholes like these vulture capitalist do that to companies, strip them of all their assets and walk away leaving everyone else holding the bag, it’s the GODDAMN GOVERNMENT that steps in and picks up the fucking pieces.

    ReplyReply
  180. 180
    JMG says:

    “Serious concerns” first means, “have somebody important call me and listen to me vent for awhile.” It’s a bipartisan dodge. Dems use it for big legislation too. Remember how Sen. Ben Nelson became so important in 2009-2010?

    ReplyReply
  181. 181
    liberal says:

    @ArchTeryx:

    It’s stuff like this that make me think my goose is honestly cooked unless a miracle occurs. I’m of the opinion that a) Republicans will fall in line, because authoritarians always do. It’ll pass both houses.

    I understand your reasoning, but I still think the likeliest thing is that they can’t get anything done on it, since there’s too much disagreement about what to do in the Republican caucus, and instead Trump tries to strangle ACA via executive actions (or neglect).

    ReplyReply
  182. 182
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    ah, it’s spite-theatre

    Alex Moe‏Verified account
    @ AlexNBCNews
    The House plans to vote on the healthcare repeal/replace plan on THURSDAY March 23rd — the 7th anniversary of the signing of the ACA

    ReplyReply
  183. 183
    ArchTeryx says:

    @liberal: The number of votes Jill Stein got vs. the number of votes Clinton lost by in several states. Look it up if you’re so inclined. It was Nader all over again. It’s hardly a sole cause – the election was so close any cause is overdetermined – but any leftie pulls out that hoary old Kodos vs. Kang routine gets called out by me at this point. I lived through 8 years of W. I probably won’t live through 4 years of Trump. I have no fucks left to give.

    ReplyReply
  184. 184
    hovercraft says:

    @SiubhanDuinne:

    Actually, I’m looking at a book, I’m reading a book, I’m trying to get started.

    Oops how’d that slip out, definitely reading, yes reading, but so so busy presidenting.

    ReplyReply
  185. 185
    Jeffro says:

    @ArchTeryx: @JMG:

    So…let’s all agree to try and push back on the pols and reporters that try to get away with throwing “Serious Concerns” around! =)

    ReplyReply
  186. 186
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @hovercraft: after paying no taxes for ten years (I am speculating with all necessary responsibility), trumpy paid I think less than 25% income tax on unearned (or at least unlabored-for) income from a mismanaged inheritance. And a TeeVee show.
    ETA: and maybe residuals from his MacDonald’s commercial. Again, irresponsible not to speculate

    ReplyReply
  187. 187
    liberal says:

    @hovercraft:

    …we don’t have “costs”…

    Well, we do actually have costs. Resources are finite. What isn’t true is that the national debt is the final determinant of whether the costs are too high, because we have a fiat currency.

    ReplyReply
  188. 188
    catclub says:

    @rikyrah:

    They really think a war with North Korea is gonna boost his numbers?

    I would say the reasoning would be more along the lines of “Hey, it couldn’t hurt.” or “it worked for GwBush, go for it!”

    never mind that GwBush ended his term about as popular as Nixon was at the end of his.

    ReplyReply
  189. 189
    Jeffro says:

    @hovercraft: “Looking at a book” = “I can see the cover of a book within my field of vision. The thought of actually picking it up and reading it for any length of time terrifies me”

    Jesus, from Obama to this waste of cells…

    ReplyReply
  190. 190
    Mike J says:

    @catclub:

    never mind that GwBush ended his term about as popular as Nixon was at the end of his.

    Bush ended his second term unpopular. He wasn’t running for anything then, so it didn’t matter. Trump is counting on a war getting him a second term.

    ReplyReply
  191. 191
    ArchTeryx says:

    @Jeffro: Nobody cares what I have to say outside of this board and my friends on Facebook. I’m an unemployed nobody with a worthless STEM Ph.D and zero assets. The Powers That Be CLAIM folks like me are valuable assets, but not valuable enough to give, you know, a job to. Or healthcare. Or food. I’m surplus population, and I always have been.

    The Media could give two shits about me and everyone like me. They certainly didn’t during the Great Recession, and they aren’t gonna start now.

    ReplyReply
  192. 192
    ArchTeryx says:

    @Mike J: Exactly. All Bush cared about was getting re-elected so he could privatize Social Security. Once that failed, he had no fucks left to give, either. Congress changing hands only sealed his lame-duck status. He might have been a better pol then Trump, but that isn’t exactly saying much.

    ReplyReply
  193. 193
    Corner Stone says:

    @ArchTeryx: Sigh.

    ReplyReply
  194. 194
    ArchTeryx says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: I’m laying a small bet with a RL friend that it passes the House on that alone. Even the Krazy Kaukus isn’t going to pass up a chance to spite Obama one last time.

    ReplyReply
  195. 195

    @Brachiator: @Yarrow:
    Ishq Sufiana ( For you, my love is mystical), From Vidya Balan’s last National Award Winning performance in The Dirty Picture.

    ReplyReply
  196. 196
    rikyrah says:

    Merkel wouldn’t shake his hand?

    BWA HA HA AH AH AH AHA HA

    ReplyReply
  197. 197
    rikyrah says:

    Republicans’ concerns about the deficit quietly disappear
    03/17/17 12:51 PM
    By Steve Benen

    About a year ago, Donald Trump made one of the more outlandish claims of his candidacy: he said he would eliminate the national debt in eight years.

    Specifically, Trump told the Washington Post that he wants to see the United States “get rid of the $19 trillion in debt.” Pressed for details, the GOP candidate said he “could do it fairly quickly,” eliminating the debt “over a period of eight years.”

    This was, as we discussed at the time, nuts. He was effectively promising to deliver multi-trillion-dollar surpluses every year for eight years, which no one considers even remotely possible.

    A year later, the White House doesn’t even pretend to care about those priorities. Politico noted yesterday:

    While steep cuts to departments like the EPA are expected under a Republican president, Trump’s plan leaves out the key conservative priority of deficit reduction. […]

    [OMB Director Mick Mulvaney], once among Congress’ toughest deficit hawks, also acknowledged the White House budget leaves the nation’s $488 billion federal deficit untouched. The decision ignores what has become the fiscal gold standard within the GOP: a budget that balances within 10 years.

    Mulvaney, the president’s budget director, specifically told reporters yesterday, “[J]ust to clarify, it’s not a balanced budget. There will still be roughly a $488 billion deficit, according to the Congressional Budget Office, next year.”

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  198. 198
    germy says:

    @rikyrah: headline in The Telegraph:

    Donald Trump appears to refuse handshake with Angela Merkel in Oval Office

    ReplyReply
  199. 199
    rikyrah says:

    Exposing the GOP Lie About Block Granting to States
    by Nancy LeTourneau March 17, 2017 11:22 AM

    One of the ways Republicans have traditionally tried to get rid of federal programs that enjoy broad support from the American public is to suggest that they should be block granted to the states in order to allow them to have discretion over meeting their own constituent’s needs. Right now they are busy making those arguments in an attempt to block grant Medicaid.

    In many cases block granting allows Republicans to reduce funds and then force states to make the hard choices about who gets hurt – letting them escape accountability while claiming that the outcomes demonstrate that the programs don’t work. It’s a pretty neat trick if the public let’s you pull it off.

    You might have heard that yesterday Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney suggested that the Meals on Wheels program doesn’t work. While I don’t mind that this administration is taking some flack for being heartless with their budget cuts, that isn’t necessarily the case he made.

    “Isn’t feeding seniors in and of itself the fulfillment of the program’s goal?” Director Mulvaney was asked about cuts to Meals on Wheels pic.twitter.com/sKnq3wHsN2

    — VICE News (@vicenews) March 16, 2017

    ReplyReply
  200. 200
    TenguPhule says:

    @NobodySpecial:

    Who the fuck is enriched in a ground war in Korea, exactly?

    Trump has probably taken out life insurance policies on every soldier on the ground.

    ReplyReply
  201. 201
    hovercraft says:

    @liberal: Our “costs” are expenditures meant to improve our lives, education, air and water safety, health, public safety, and myriad other ways, these “costs” are not balanced on the other side by how much profit they can benefit, they are balanced as to how much good they are doing for us a s society and weighed against how much we should ALL pay to continue them. Profit is not the purpose of government, it is the welfare of it’s citizens, the deficit question is neither here or there as to the function of government, that’s a totally different question. Budget “hawks” try to muddy the two so that they can get the rest of us to think that our tax “burden” is too high, then they turn around and butch about how shitty government services are after they’ve forced them to do more with less.

    ReplyReply
  202. 202
    Yarrow says:

    @schrodingers_cat: Very cool. All that spinning makes me dizzy! I didn’t see subtitle option, though, so I probably missed a lot of what was going on.

    In other news, this caught my eye yesterday.

    New Fox poll: 66% want investigation of Russia/election. 63% want investigation into whether Trump was connected: https://t.co/op5PKeVNg7— Cathleen Decker (@cathleendecker) March 16, 2017

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  203. 203
    germy says:

    Just three months ago, Newsweek reporter Kurt Eichenwald temporarily quit Twitter after a supporter of President Donald Trump sent him a flashing image that triggered an epileptic seizure. Friday, Eichenwald tweeted that the man who sent the strobing image has been arrested by the FBI.

    According to Eichenwald, the man faces federal charges and will be indicted by the Dallas District Attorney on other charges in the coming days. After the news came out that someone did this and harmed Eichenwald, online copycats sent him similar graphics.

    ReplyReply
  204. 204
    Brachiator says:

    @schrodingers_cat:

    I loved the last line of the trailer, when the government official tells her that she has one month to vacate the premises. She says, Sir, I too can count a month, it leaves me bloodied every time.

    I liked that as well. Is the play on words similar in the original language?

    ReplyReply
  205. 205

    @Yarrow: I have not seen the movie myself. Emraan Hashmi’s character is pining for Vidya Balan’s character. She is not that into him. Its all a fantasy in his head. The number has Sufi imagery of the spinning dervishes.

    ReplyReply
  206. 206
    tobie says:

    @germy: What an asshole. She asks him “Should we have a handshake” and he says NOTHING. He’s such an uncouth moron.

    I’ll scour the German papers tonight to see how this is reported. The FAZ (Germany’s paper of record) has a slew of headlines about Trump including this one that caught my eye: “Es ist der Handel, Dummkopf” meaning “It’s trade, stupid” as a riff on “It’s the economy, stupid.” No way the FAZ would have used that word to describe any other sitting US President.

    ReplyReply
  207. 207
    vhh says:

    @MattF: See also Poland, 1939 and Iraq, 2003.

    ReplyReply
  208. 208

    @Brachiator: In Hindi she says I too can count a month because it leaves me red, every time. Its powerful in Hindi. Because one doesn’t speak of such indecent things in public. The taboo is even greater in a traditional society like India about blood gushing from wherever.
    My body, my home, my country, my rules is a pretty powerful message for any woman, anywhere in the world, even today.

    ReplyReply
  209. 209
    germy says:

    @tobie: This is going to be a long four (eight?) years…

    ReplyReply
  210. 210
    Brachiator says:

    @rikyrah:

    Merkel wouldn’t shake his hand?

    Trump may not have heard Merkel when she asked to shake hands. Either way, awkward!

    In awkward exchange, Trump seems to ignore Merkel’s handshake request

    In an exchange caught on video, photographers gathered around Trump and Merkel in the Oval Office early Friday afternoon and suggested that the two leaders shake hands for the camera.

    Merkel, a U.S. ally regarded highly by former President Barack Obama, turned toward Trump and asked, “Do you want to have a handshake?”

    Trump, who seemed to be grimacing as he sat alongside Merkel, did not respond. He continued looking forward as the cameras rolled.

    It is unclear whether or not Trump heard the chancellor, but clips of the exchange immediately made the rounds on Twitter. Reporters dubbed it “awkward.”

    “[T]his is so awkward that i died while watching it,” The Atlantic’s Rosie Gray tweeted.

    A photograph taken when Merkel first met with Trump earlier in the day outside the White House shows the two leaders shaking hands.

    The obvious “pvssy grabbing” jokes write themselves.

    ReplyReply
  211. 211
    hovercraft says:

    Public service announcement, be on the look out for the following in a tweet early tomorrow morning.

    From Politico

    The last straw, they said, was a post published earlier on Thursday connecting former President Barack Obama’s visit to Hawaii with a Hawaiian federal judge’s ruling against President Donald Trump’s revised travel ban. The since-retracted post meticulously pointed out all the possible connections between Obama’s visit and the judge, including that they attended Harvard at the same time, that Obama appointed the judge, and that a restaurant Obama ate at during his trip was close to the federal courthouse.

    “This is not to allege the former president met with Judge Derrick Watson, but merely to point out the timing and the opportunity was there ahead of a controversial court ruling,” the story states.

    The theory of Obama having a connection to the federal judge’s ruling was also promoted on sites with a conspiracy theory bent including InfoWars and Gateway Pundit.

    ReplyReply
  212. 212
    Aleta says:

    Ryan argues for legalizing m:

    House Speaker Paul Ryan to Rich Lowry on capping Medicaid funding: “We’ve been dreaming of this since you and I were drinking out of a keg”
    (from Adam Cancryn‏ twitter)

    Responses on his twitter: https://twitter.com/adamcancryn/status/842763734280036354

    ReplyReply
  213. 213
    Jeffro says:

    And now Jane Mayer has a huge article out on the Mercers as well...fascinating stuff…

    Nothing surprising to folks here who know our Randians when we see them:

    Magerman told the Wall Street Journal that Mercer’s political opinions “show contempt for the social safety net that he doesn’t need, but many Americans do.” He also said that Mercer wants the U.S. government to be “shrunk down to the size of a pinhead.” Several former colleagues of Mercer’s said that his views are akin to Objectivism, the philosophy of Ayn Rand. Magerman told me, “Bob believes that human beings have no inherent value other than how much money they make. A cat has value, he’s said, because it provides pleasure to humans. But if someone is on welfare they have negative value. If he earns a thousand times more than a schoolteacher, then he’s a thousand times more valuable.” Magerman added, “He thinks society is upside down—that government helps the weak people get strong, and makes the strong people weak by taking their money away, through taxes.” He said that this mind-set was typical of “instant billionaires” in finance, who “have no stake in society,” unlike the industrialists of the past, who “built real things.”

    ReplyReply
  214. 214
    Jeffro says:

    @Corner Stone: I know, right? Double sigh.

    Come on AT, there’s nothing like being a happy warrior! ;)

    ReplyReply
  215. 215
    Yarrow says:

    @schrodingers_cat: Yeah, I picked up on the Sufi imagery of the dervishes. Very cool choreography and camera work.

    @schrodingers_cat: It’s really bold of them to put the line in the trailer.

    ReplyReply
  216. 216
    Jeffro says:

    @germy: Somewhat related: did Republican President Trump tweet anything about his soulmate Geert Wilders losing bigly over in the Netherlands?

    Did any enterprising young reporter have a chance to ask Trumpov (or at least Spicey) for a reaction?

    Inquiring anti-fascist minds want to know these things. =)

    ReplyReply
  217. 217
    Jeffro says:

    @germy: ALLLL RIIIIIIGHT! Made my day! Gonna go tweet at Eichenwald and send him my congrats!

    ReplyReply
  218. 218
    tobie says:

    @Brachiator: I saw the video. It looks like he’s ignoring her. First the photograhers ask loudly, “Can we get a handshake?” Then after a few seconds she leans over to him and asks they shouldn’t shake hands.

    ReplyReply
  219. 219
    hovercraft says:

    Why is liberal Hollywood so mean to conservatives, I mean they just insist on keeping them down.
    Via Salon
    It all started when Jimmy Kimmel innocently asked his guest if he attended the inauguration. Allen offered a somewhat garbled response before he answered the question.

    “I was invited by . . . We did a VIP thing for the vets. We went to the veterans ball. I went to go see Democrats and Republicans. Yeah, I went to the inauguration.”

    “I’m not attacking you,” Kimmel said, laughing at Allen’s evasiveness.

    The actor and comedian recognized that his answer was a little defensive, so he gave this explanation:

    “You get into this town. . . . I’m not kidding. You got to be real careful around here or you get beat up. If you don’t believe what everybody believes, it’s like ’30s Germany. I don’t know what happened. If you are not part of the group . . . I am a comedian, I like going on both sides.”

    Allen is currently the star of the popular ABC sitcom “The Last Man Standing” in which he plays a loudmouth conservative who seems to fancy Trump. His show has been hailed by conservatives for spurning Hollywood’s liberal point of view. The actor himself backed Ohio Gov. John Kasich in the 2016 presidential campaign and considers himself “center right.”

    ________________________
    That poor beleaguered man. Asshole. I really hate these people, fucking snowflakes.

    ReplyReply
  220. 220
    germy says:

    @Jeffro:

    did Republican President Trump tweet anything about his soulmate

    I thought it was Steve King’s soulmate. King had a congratulatory tweet all lined up, and then the… unthinkable happened.

    ReplyReply
  221. 221
    Aleta says:

    US National Security advisor Flynn: Fired for lying to Pence, which Tr later said he regretted.

    Mike Flynn was paid tens of thousands of dollars by Russian companies shortly before he became a formal adviser to the then-candidate, according to documents obtained by a congressional oversight committee that revealed business interests that hadn’t been previously known.

    Mr. Flynn was paid $11,250 each by a Russian air cargo company that had been suspended as a vendor to the United Nations following a corruption scandal, and by a Russian cybersecurity company that was then trying to expand its business with the U.S. government, according to the documents, which were reviewed by The Wall Street Journal.

    The speaking engagements took place in the summer and fall of 2015, a year after Mr. Flynn had been fired as the director of the Defense Intelligence Agency and while he continued to maintain a top-secret level security clearance.

    In December 2015, the Kremlin-backed news organization RT also paid Mr. Flynn $33,750 to speak about U.S. foreign policy and intelligence matters at a conference in Moscow.

    In February 2016, Mr. Flynn became an official adviser to the presidential campaign of Donald Trump, who at the time was taking a softer stance toward Moscow than his Republican rivals.

    Last week, Mr. Flynn filed papers with the Justice Department disclosing that his firm was paid $530,000 to work in the U.S. on behalf of the interests of the Turkish government. Mr. Flynn had performed those services while he was advising Mr. Trump, then a presidential candidate.

    Little additional information has become public about other clients the former military intelligence chief’s private consulting firm, Flynn Intel Group, may have had before the retired general’s appointment as national security adviser.

    Mr. Cummings said that by taking the fee, Mr. Flynn had violated the emoluments clause of the Constitution, which prohibits retired military personnel from receiving pay from foreign governments without congressional authorization. The prohibition may extend to payments from contractors providing services to a foreign government, according to Department of Defense guidance.

    “I cannot recall anytime in our nation’s history when the president selected as his national security adviser someone who violated the Constitution by accepting tens of thousands of dollars from an agent of a global adversary that attacked our democracy,” Mr. Cummings wrote.

    Email communications with the speakers’ bureau indicate RT sought to orchestrate the event and Mr. Flynn’s remarks.

    “Using your expertise as an intelligence professional, we’d like you to talk about the decision-making process in the White House—and the role of the intelligence community in it,” an official from RT TV-Russia wrote in an email on Nov. 20, 2015, the month before Mr. Flynn’s appearance in Moscow. In an earlier email in October, an RT official described the event as a networking opportunity for Mr. Flynn and an occasion to meet “political influencers from Russia and around the world.” At a gala dinner during the event, Mr. Flynn sat at the head table next to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

    “It was something of a surprise to see General Flynn there,” said Ray McGovern, a former CIA officer and political activist who also attended.

    Before the dinner, Mr. Flynn gave an interview on stage with an RT correspondent and chastised the Obama administration for objecting to Russia’s intervention in Syria. “The United States can’t sit there and say, ‘Russia, you’re bad,’” Mr. Flynn said, according to a video of the interview, noting that both countries had shared global interests and were “in a marriage, whether we like it or not.”

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/mike-flynn-worked-for-other-russian-companies-besides-rt-documents-1489683618

    ReplyReply
  222. 222
    Kay says:

    A Republican congressman said Friday that, without “pretty compelling proof,” President Donald Trump should apologize to former President Barack Obama for Trump’s unsubstantiated claim that Obama ordered surveillance on him during the 2016 campaign.

    That’s true. A normally decent person would apologize. Trump is petty and pampered and indulged, so he won’t apologize but he should be pressured to apologize because that’s how societal norms work- they’re enforced by people who know how to behave.

    Obama is definitely owed an apology. Donald Trump accused him of something he didn’t do. A third grader would get this, but it doesn’t occur to any of the low quality people Trump surrounds himself with.

    ReplyReply
  223. 223
    Brachiator says:

    @schrodingers_cat:

    In Hindi she says I too can count a month because it leaves me red, every time. Its powerful in Hindi. Because one doesn’t speak of such indecent things in public

    This play on words is powerful in many languages and cultures, and just as transgressive. But as you note, I can imagine that it is defiantly taboo breaking in Hindi.

    The way the women sit in some of the scenes, with their legs spread (but obviously covered by their dresses) is also striking. I could easily imagine a Hollywood remake of this movie, as a Western, maybe, with some changes in the background story.

    But this version looks very interesting. Was there any controversy over the theme or subject matter when the movie was in production?

    ReplyReply
  224. 224
    germy says:

    @hovercraft: Not many comedians actually like him. He’s not funny and unpopular with his peers.

    Also, as a youth he benefitted from some serious white privilege:

    On October 2, 1978, Allen was arrested in the Kalamazoo/Battle Creek International Airport for possession of over 650 grams (1.43 lb) of cocaine. He subsequently pleaded guilty to drug trafficking charges and provided the names of other dealers in exchange for a sentence of three to seven years rather than a possible life imprisonment. He was paroled on June 12, 1981, after serving two years and four months in Federal Correctional Institution, Sandstone in Sandstone, Minnesota.[

    Most standup comedians dream of getting their own TV show. Most don’t. He got TWO. He’s doing okay, not sure why feels so put upon. The bosses love him.

    ReplyReply
  225. 225
    Ruckus says:

    @Mike in DC:
    I see your problem. You are using logic, facts and maths (IOW you can add 2+2 and get an answer besides lower taxes)
    If you want to understand how this administration (which only administers bullshit) works, you have to go stick your head in the sand for 30 yrs, coming out on alternate Thursdays to read AnnRidiculous and then stuff your head back in the sand. After 30 yrs of that you spend the next 5 shoveling bullshit so that you are used to it. Now you will understand how their tiny little brains barely function at the level of a 5 yr old moron.

    ReplyReply
  226. 226

    @Brachiator: Its not yet been released. They just released this trailer this week, I think. Her language is pretty crass too.

    ReplyReply
  227. 227
    sukabi says:

    @Yarrow: Drumpf made those claims about Obama for 2 reasons…1) it’s what he’d do…and has done. And 2) he’s a paranoid, narscisstic sociopath who listens to the voices in his head and fox news.

    ReplyReply
  228. 228
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @liberal: ALL currencies are fiat currencies. ALL OF THEM.

    ReplyReply
  229. 229
    Corner Stone says:

    I am so fucking embarrassed that this disgustingly pathetic attempt at a human being is standing beside Angela Merkel repping my country.
    Look at this fucking three year old. He is wondering when he can go potty again.

    ReplyReply
  230. 230
    Aleta says:

    @hovercraft: And after a meal older folks are easily mistaken for bears.

    ReplyReply
  231. 231
    sherparick says:

    @germy: Actually, 3 shows I believe. Plus the movies made at the height of his Q rating in the late nineties and early oughts. But once you stick your head in the conservative bubble you are pretty well on your way to making yourself a moron. Plus low taxes!!!

    Side note, and evidence that for the Trump administration the State Department might as well not exist, one facet of the Spicer/GHQC imbroglio is that the British Ambassador and Foreign Ministry went straight to the White House to voice their complaint since they know Kushner, Bannon, and McMaster are the only people foreign Governments can talk to iif they have a problem with the U.S. The State Department has been “deconstructed.”

    ReplyReply
  232. 232
    Raoul says:

    @hovercraft: no mechanism to control their member
    Awesome typo. Describes far, far too many Congrescritters.

    ReplyReply
  233. 233
    Jeffro says:

    Ok, enough gloom and doom and Rebekah Mercer: here’s a chuckle that even your Republican friends (both of them) will enjoy:

    White House thrown into panic when Trump is cut off from key advisers

    ;)

    ReplyReply
  234. 234
    Corner Stone says:

    He won’t even look at her. Fucking buffoon.
    She is drowning him in detail and he has no idea what to do but nod and look away.

    ReplyReply
  235. 235
    raven says:

    A US Secret Service laptop with Trump Tower floor plans and other sensitive material was taken from an agent’s vehicle in New York, US media report.
    Authorities said the laptop was taken on Thursday morning and contains sensitive information.
    The computer has details on the criminal inquiry into former Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton’s use of private email, according to ABC News.
    Police are looking at surveillance footage to identify a suspect.

    ReplyReply
  236. 236
    Corner Stone says:

    Can someone please impale Mark Halperin on a very girthy, and lengthy spear. Then plant him somewhere on the WH lawn as a warning to the others.

    ReplyReply
  237. 237
    Barbara says:

    @Kay: He not only accused him of something he didn’t do, he accused him of an action that would be a crime if he had done it. That is what we call per se libelous if it is false. I would sooner expect Trump to see what he can do to fabricate evidence than to provide an apology. What a disgusting excuse for a human being.

    ReplyReply
  238. 238
    Aleta says:

    @sukabi: And he won with certain supporters on Obama hatred, so when in trouble with them will always fire that up (same with HRC).

    ReplyReply
  239. 239
    tobie says:

    @raven: Why would a secret service agent have computer files on the FBI’s investigation of Clinton’s email server? Am I missing something here?

    ReplyReply
  240. 240
    Timurid says:

    @raven: Why would those two things be on the same computer?

    ReplyReply
  241. 241
    sukabi says:

    @raven: why on earth would a secret service agent have the details of the fbi investigation into Clinton? I can see why they’d have tt blueprints as they have to be able to secure it.

    ReplyReply
  242. 242
    hovercraft says:

    @Raoul:

    ;- 0 , my bad?

    ReplyReply
  243. 243
    hovercraft says:

    @Corner Stone:
    I’d ask what he’s done now, but he’s Mark Halpern, nuff said.

    ReplyReply
  244. 244
    sherparick says:

    @Jeffro: I definitely intend to read it. But I really do find the attitudes and beliefs of people like Robert and Rebekah Mercer strange. “I have made myself a billionaire over the last thirty years. But the economic system in which I worked, a capitalistic system with limited Government intervention and regulation (far less then what existed before 1969), is terrible and destroying the country because there is still some Government intervention and regulation.” It is like reading Ronald Reagan’s speech for Barry Goldwater in 1964 where he decries 32 years of New Deal policy and Government as completely “failed” despite the fact that in 1964 the U.S. was by far the richest, most powerful, and most wide spread prosperity in history, just 32 years after FDR took over at the depth of the Great Depression, 25% unemployment, and with the banking system collapsing. My parents considered him a complete lunatic at the time, and he was. And the whole Republican Party is a lunatic asylum, with 65 million members.

    ReplyReply
  245. 245
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    Trumpy find out building warships isn’t like staffing hotels,…

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/.....59119.html

    Companies say they are eager to work with Trump to build his bigger Navy. But expanding hiring, for now, is difficult to do until they receive new orders, officials say.

    “It’s hard to look beyond” current orders, Brenton said.

    Smaller shipbuilders and suppliers are also cautious.

    “You can’t hire people to do nothing,” said Jill Mackie, spokeswoman for Portland, Oregon-based Vigor Industrial LLC, which makes combat craft for the Navy’s Special Warfare units. “Until funding is there … you can’t bring on more workers.”

    Translation; the Tea Party as repeatedly burned Defense Contractors by ordering stuff and then refusing to pay for because that would be Socialism. Now it’s cash on the barrel.

    ReplyReply
  246. 246
    Raoul says:

    @Steve Bennen via rikyrah:

    plans to slash the State Department’s budget – a move that Secretary of State Rex Tillerson inexplicably embraced, further demoralizing the department

    Steve. Sir. There’s nothing inexplicable about it. Tillerson has a retirement account that could buy an island nation. He don’t give a fvk about his State Dept employees. I’m not yet sure what does give a rats as for. But he is part of the disassemble the global order for fun and profit set.

    And then he retires for real and sits on lucrative corporate boards and the rest of us can just choke on carbon emissions.

    ReplyReply
  247. 247
    Brachiator says:

    @Kay:

    That’s true. A normally decent person would apologize. Trump is petty and pampered and indulged, so he won’t apologize but he should be pressured to apologize because that’s how societal norms work- they’re enforced by people who know how to behave.

    Trump would never apologize. He intentionally evoked Obama’s name in order to insult him personally and to attack the memory of his presidency. It is deliberate, excites Trump’s supporters and is intended to undermine Obama’s legacy.

    ReplyReply
  248. 248
    TenguPhule says:

    @Enhanced Voting Techniques:

    Now it’s cash on the barrel.

    With poor children stuffed inside the barrel by the Republicans as the evening’s entertainment.

    ReplyReply
  249. 249
    Jeffro says:

    @sherparick: They don’t see it that way (obvs). They think that they magically made it on their own, so “why can’t everyone else get off their lazy butts?” and so on. Very hard working people have a hard time seeing factors like luck and the prior investments of others as elements of their success.

    They also seem to want to worship their magical, mysterious, interpretation of the “Invisible Hand” (never mind that their version does NOT jibe with Adam Smith’s)…an interpretation where as every possible rule and institution falls away, humanity somehow rises to truly transcendent heights. Funny how the first rules and laws that billionaires always want to ‘fall’ are the ones that keep them from making truly obscene profits as opposed to the piddly billions they’re able to make now.

    ReplyReply
  250. 250
    Alan Barney says:

    @Brachiator: A nuclear war that last a few minutes? You’ve got both sides planned out have you. What about China? They are going to be cool with nukes going off on their borders?

    ReplyReply
  251. 251
    TenguPhule says:

    @Brachiator:

    A war with Norh Korea will not involve boots on the ground. It will be a nuclear war which will last a few minutes.

    30,000 US troops and 200,000 South Korean troops will politely call bullshit on you.

    the bulk of the damage in a Korean war will happen the old fashioned way, artillery strikes.

    ReplyReply
  252. 252
    Spanky says:

    @raven:

    The computer has details on the criminal inquiry into former Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton’s use of private email, according to ABC News.

    Da fuq does the SS need to have that info for?

    ETA: Obvs that I wasn’t first to that by a long shot.

    ReplyReply
  253. 253
    Snarki, child of Loki says:

    @TenguPhule:

    If things start to heat up on the Korean peninsula, stay away from Disneyland Tokyo!.

    I hear that Kim Jong Nutzo has a grudge against it, so might nuke it. Goofy, you say? Yeah, him also, too.

    ReplyReply
  254. 254
    Raoul says:

    @hovercraft: The Marmalade Mopped Moron sez

    The costs of our country are out of control.

    The tax rates of our country are about a percent or two below what we need, and still too much for the rich to (claim to) tolerate. That’s basically it.

    The costs thing is both a very stupidly constructed sentence (par for Golfing Goofus) but also bullshit.

    ReplyReply
  255. 255
    Brachiator says:

    @tobie:

    I saw the video. It looks like he’s ignoring her. First the photograhers ask loudly, “Can we get a handshake?” Then after a few seconds she leans over to him and asks they shouldn’t shake hands.

    I am trying to give Trump the benefit of the doubt. He is our president and deserves our support. ….

    WAIT. Can’t do it. He looks like a freaking buffoon. I cannot believe that this dope got elected president.

    ReplyReply
  256. 256
    Brachiator says:

    @Alan Barney:

    A nuclear war that last a few minutes? You’ve got both sides planned out have you. What about China? They are going to be cool with nukes going off on their borders?

    @TenguPhule:

    30,000 US troops and 200,000 South Korean troops will politely call bullshit on you.

    the bulk of the damage in a Korean war will happen the old fashioned way, artillery strikes.

    Ultimately, my guess is as good or bad as yours. The bottom line is that I don’t trust Trump to make an intelligent decision about foreign policy, and am rapidly losing faith in his team.

    ReplyReply
  257. 257
    TenguPhule says:

    @Snarki, child of Loki: He might try. And he might succeed. Or not. So far the reliability of their longer range missiles sucks on average. So Tokyo is a lot safer then Seoul if you’re willing to bet your life.

    18,000+ estimated NK artillery platforms in range of Seoul.

    Its not called king of the battlefield for nothing.

    ReplyReply
  258. 258
    TenguPhule says:

    @Brachiator: The point is that your estimate of a short war ending like that is not realistic. Every military planner worth their salt who’s studied NK knows that a resumption of the war will be bloody and protracted. Both sides have literally spent decades fortifying and preparing for a return to hostilities.

    ReplyReply
  259. 259
    Brachiator says:

    @TenguPhule:

    The point is that your estimate of a short war ending like that is not realistic. Every military planner worth their salt who’s studied NK knows that a resumption of the war will be bloody and protracted. Both sides have literally spent decades fortifying and preparing for a return to hostilities.

    It wasn’t really my estimate. I was quoting a guy named Bryan Suits, a veteran who is also a local (maybe syndicated) talk show host, who often talks reasonably about this and related issues.

    Nonetheless, I take responsibility for what I wrote. But I am not am armchair general and who knows, you may have a ton of experience and knowledge. Either way, it is pointless to speculate. Trump is the new wild card. Would he listen to his military people if N Korea launched a nuclear strike on S Korea, Japan and maybe US targets? Or would he order massive retaliation? Would N Korea even allow themselves to be baited into starting a war?

    Nobody knows. And nobody, not even military planners worth their salt, know what the moron-in-chief might demand of them.

    ReplyReply
  260. 260
    Itinerantpedant says:

    @hovercraft: Especially GCHQ. They do not answer to Trump, they are not interested in Trump’s well being. If he EVER gets sideways with Teresa May, or whoever succeeds her when Brexit turns into an epic shit show, he is in it deep.

    To a lesser extent BND (Bundesnachtrichtendienst), because Merkel can’t STAND him, and the CDU is the right wing party in Germany (it’s what happens when you actually outlaw Nazism…Nazis don’t get into power). He’d do WAY worse with an SPD led government.

    Foreign intelligence has no reason to treat him nicely, they really don’t like the oppo (the FSB and its master), and the gloves may well come off sooner than later.

    ReplyReply
  261. 261
    Raoul says:

    @tobie:

    What an asshole. She asks him “Should we have a handshake” and he says NOTHING. He’s such an uncouth moron.

    I watched the video. For the entire minute of the ‘pool spray’ (I hate that term!) he looked like a gasping, out-of-water guppie and barely looked at her once. I lack any credentials to make this claim, but he seems seriously psychologically unwell. And an asshole to boot.

    ReplyReply
  262. 262
    Aleta says:

    Yesterday: Tr’s announced budget would cut funding for worker training programs and education in work-related fields that are open to people in economically depressed areas.

    Today:

    Ivanka Trump and Merkel talked with American and German executives and discussed how companies can better train workers. … The conversation was focused on vocational training and workforce development.

    DJ T said that “training our workforce for the 21st century” was a top priority, adding that “we want to make sure we have the workforce development programs we need to ensure these jobs are being filled by American workers.”

    Propaganda, lies:
    (Delivered to CNN straight from the WH and Ivanka’s PR company; reported w/o fact check or questioning)

    A meeting between President Donald Trump and German Chancellor Angela Merkel on vocational training Friday offered further evidence of the first daughter’s influence in the White House.

    A White House official said Merkel’s staff reached out to Ivanka Trump about setting up the meeting. … During Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s visit last month, she helped organize a meeting on economic development opportunities for women. That came together at the suggestion of Trudeau’s office.

    Ivanka Trump, who recruited the American executives in attendance, guided the discussion. She praised her father’s “commitment to creating millions of jobs” and stressed the need for private investment, noting that “ingenuity, creativity often comes from the determination of the private sector.”

    ReplyReply
  263. 263
    Raoul says:

    @Jeffro:

    Bob [Mercer] believes that human beings have no inherent value other than how much money they make.

    Holy hell. At some point won’t Bob just want to buy a tank and drive (consequence free) right over the occupied cars of all the value-free humans obstructing his billion dollar freedom?

    ReplyReply
  264. 264

    @Jeffro: That’s what libertarians like Paul Ryan and a lot of Republican voters believe as well

    ReplyReply
  265. 265

    @Yarrow: Bullshit. Indonesian tribal cultures on line 1, Cherokees on line 2, and the Grandmothers of the Iroquois would like a word with you on line 3.

    ReplyReply
  266. 266
    Shantanu Saha says:

    “Recent allegations made by media commentator Judge Andrew Napolitano about GCHQ being asked to conduct ‘wire tapping’ against the then President Elect are nonsense.

    Notice they didn’t confirm or deny whether they actually conducted the wiretap, just that Obama did not request it. If I were British intelligence, I would investigate every existential threat, no matter the consequence. Just sayin’.

    ReplyReply
  267. 267
    TriassicSands says:

    @Enhanced Voting Techniques:

    It’s really like Trump has the mind of a nine year old child.

    @SFAW:

    You’re over by about six years.

    Knock off another year, SFAW. They don’t call them the “Terrible Twos” for nothing.

    ReplyReply
  268. 268
    TriassicSands says:

    @Brachiator:

    The question is how will the history books read:

    a. Trump accused Obama of wiretapping him in a tremendous breach of the law and norms of behavior.

    b. Lunatic Trump made wild accusations throughout his disastrous tenure, among which were accusations that former President Obama had Trump wiretapped during the 2016 presidential campaign. As with all of Trump’s delusional accusations, he provided no evidence in support of his claims.

    ReplyReply
  269. 269
    J R in WV says:

    @liberal:

    Dumb-ass Russian Troll: Who is living in the White House? Not a Democratic President, huh?

    ReplyReply

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