Friday Morning Open Thread: The GOP Are Really Cheap… Dates

Let’s not insult honest sex workers, the Repubs are a bunch of two-bit amateurs. Politico earnestly warns us that “Angry GOP donors close their wallets”:

Tensions reached a boiling point at a recent dinner at the home of Los Angeles billionaire Robert Day. In full view of around two dozen guests, Thomas Wachtell, a retired oil and gas investor and party contributor, delivered an urgent message to the night’s headliner, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell: Just do something.

Wachtell, who has given tens of thousands of dollars over the years to Senate Republicans, recalled that McConnell responded defensively. Passing legislation takes time, the Republican leader responded, and President Donald Trump didn’t seem to understand how long it required.

“Anybody who was there knew that I was not happy. And I don’t think anybody was happy. How could you be?” said Wachtell, who has previously given over $2,000 to McConnell but recently stopped donating to Senate GOP causes. “You’re never going to get a more sympathetic Republican than I am. But I’m sick and tired of nothing happening…

Tens of thousands! to destroy the world’s greatest superpower. A lousy $2,000 to buy Mitch McConnell’s… loyalty. Despite what Gary Cohn believes, you can’t even renovate your kitchen or buy a decent second-hand car for two grand, at least here in the Northeast. Of course, the cynics will say the donors are paying for legislators who’d’ve put out for free.

Also of course, the professional grifters do a lot better for themselves…

Behind the scenes, the GOP has begun to try to smooth things over with its most important givers. On Monday, Trump met with the party’s most prominent donor, Las Vegas casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, who has privately expressed frustration that the president hasn’t moved the U.S. Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem….

Resolved:


.

P.S. Someone’s twenty years too late with that warning about Dick Cheney…

104 replies
  1. 1
    Baud says:

    Pfeiffer speaks truth.

  2. 2
    Baud says:

    And I never thought I’d say this in a non-snarky way, but I welcome our new alien overlords.

  3. 3
    NotMax says:

    2048. The year of Barron’s election.

  4. 4
    raven says:

    I was walking down the stairs with my laptop after work yesterday when I tried to step over Lil Bit (she loves to sleep on the steps) and went ass over tea kettle. I only dinged up the back of one hand and a bit on my knee but I am amazed that my computer was not damaged even though the plastic cover I have on it came flying off.

  5. 5
    Baud says:

    @raven: Scary. Fall down the stairs could have been real bad.

  6. 6
    raven says:

    @Baud: I know, a couple years back I almost cut my pinky off when I tripped carrying chicken out to the grill. I should just nudge her and make her get up but I’m too soft on the little varmit.

  7. 7
    JGabriel says:

    I want to believe in time travel. I really do. But I’m just having a hard time believing that someone would go through the trouble and expense of time travel just to visit Wyoming.

    AP via The Independent:

    The man told police he was only able to time travel because aliens filled his body with alcohol. He noted that he was supposed to be transported to the year 2018, not this year.

    Oh. Well that makes more sense. I can totally see future aliens sending someone back to Wyoming in 2018 as a cruel joke.

  8. 8
    Schlemazel says:

    @raven:
    We have a black cat that loves to lay on the stairs. I have come close a couple of times because she is not bright enough to understand hoomans can’t see in the dark.

    Glad you made it out ok, that is a scarfy fall.

  9. 9
    NotMax says:

    @raven

    Takes a licking and keeps on ticking.

    (Not as unrelated to computers as some may think.)

  10. 10
    rikyrah says:

    Good Morning,Everyone 😐😐😐

  11. 11
    raven says:

    @Schlemazel: Yea, she does tend to perch on one of the bottom three. Her laryngal paralysis causes her breathing to be really loud so I do usually know when she is there.

  12. 12
    Baud says:

    @rikyrah: Good morning.

  13. 13
    raven says:

    @NotMax: I think the mac has a mechanism that locks the hard drive when it falls.

  14. 14
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @raven: Good thing you didn’t land on Lil Bit.

  15. 15
    raven says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I know! Or the Bohdi, he’ll sleep right at the foot of the stairs too.

  16. 16
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @NotMax:

    Takes a licking and keeps on ticking.

    One of my favorite commercials of all time was one for Timex. They had an elephant step on one laid on a pedestal, then step off it. John Cameron Swayze picks up the watch.

    Off camera voice: “What time is it, John?”

    “Time to buy a new Timex.”

  17. 17
    Amir Khalid says:

    @JGabriel:
    Maybe there’s a cheap way to travel in time that humans don’t know about yet. Something cheap enough to work as a college prank.

  18. 18
    TS says:

    Watching video on MJ – never seen a 1st lady who could turn the smile on/off as quickly as this one

  19. 19
    Cpl. Cam says:

    @Baud: Now without the pretense of wearing human skin!

  20. 20
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @TS: In all seriousness, her work as a model required that skill.

  21. 21
    NotMax says:

    Inclusion via exclusion. Yeah, that’s the ticket.

    US military halts exercises over Qatar crisis
    [snip]
    Initially, U.S. military officials said the boycott and dispute had no impact on their operations.…
    [snip]
    Responding to queries from the AP, Air Force Col. John Thomas, a Central Command spokesman, acknowledged it would be cutting back on the exercises.

    “We are opting out of some military exercises out of respect for the concept of inclusiveness and shared regional interests,” Thomas said in a statement. “We will continue to encourage all partners to work together toward the sort of common solutions that enable security and stability in the region.” Source

  22. 22
    MJS says:

    @Amir Khalid: Plenty of college students have filled their bodies with alcohol, so clearly that’s not how time travel is achieved.

  23. 23
    Schlemazel says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:
    Those were some interesting ads, I am sure they sold a few watches too.
    Strapped to a motor boat propeller, a boxers wrist, a ball player’s bat (Maris? Mantle?). I missed the elephant I guess.

  24. 24
    NotMax says:

    Repression on the Nile.

    An international rights group has slammed an Egyptian media regulatory body’s order prohibiting homosexuals or their slogans from appearing on any outlet amid a mass arrest campaign against them and their supporters. Source

    As Egypt is heavily dependent on tourism, this is bound to hit ’em where it hurts.

  25. 25
    Amir Khalid says:

    @MJS:
    Them college kids of the future must have stuffed him in the machine at the Time Travel Lab after they got him drunk.

  26. 26
    JGabriel says:

    Amir Khalid:

    Maybe there’s a cheap way to travel in time that humans don’t know about yet. Something cheap enough to work as a college prank.

    If I’m an alien coming here from another planet (as opposed to coming from another country), then I assume no cost is too great to deter me from the utter joy of sending a piddling human back in time to a red state during the Trump Error.

    I mean, if you’re from another planet, then the whole idea of a raving narcissist sociopath lunatic being in charge of the strongest military power on Earth has gotta be some hilarious shit.

  27. 27
    TS says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Never thought of that – it just doesn’t ring true.

  28. 28
    NotMax says:

    @Amir Khalid

    Pfeh. Real college students would have gotten him drunk and sent him back stark naked.

    :)

  29. 29
    JGabriel says:

    @MJS:

    Plenty of college students have filled their bodies with alcohol, so clearly that’s not how time travel is achieved.

    I assume the alien time travel isn’t achieved through the consumption of alcohol. The alcohol is just a precaution to prevent [insert scientific gobbledygook here] that would cause one’s body to go all explodey.

  30. 30
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @TS: Forced smiles never do.

  31. 31
    NotMax says:

    @JGabriel

    Ford Prefect: Hurry up, Arthur. You’ve six pints of lager to get through.

    Arthur Dent: I don’t understand. Why do I have to drink six pints?

    Ford Prefect: Muscle relaxant.

  32. 32
    NotMax says:

    @JGabriel

    Also too (different story than mentioned above), see ~17:15 to ~18:15 segment here.

  33. 33
    debbie says:

    Pity the Democrats won’t take advantage of this and will instead continue to argue over their own leadership.

  34. 34
    Baud says:

    @debbie: There’s not really an argument, just a lot of pissing and moaning.

  35. 35
    debbie says:

    @raven:

    I’ve fallen down stairs before and was also exceedingly lucky. What a horrible feeling during the tumble, amirite?

  36. 36
    Baud says:

    @NotMax: I’m finding those anti Qatar ads creepy.

  37. 37
    debbie says:

    @Baud:

    Bickering probably would have been a better word choice. But, still. Focus, people!

  38. 38
    bystander says:

    Nick Confessore is on Moanin’ Joe. He seems to be auditioning for the role of Captain Obvious.

  39. 39
    Baud says:

    @debbie: Not possible. People are jockeying for position.

  40. 40
    NotMax says:

    @Baud

    Kevlar boots. Standard equipment for Dem high muckety-mucks.

  41. 41
    debbie says:

    OT: Has anyone had to deal with cave crickets? I’m in the middle of a nightmare I can’t escape. As if stink bugs weren’t horrible enough.

  42. 42
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @debbie: Asking a caver if he’s ever had to deal with cave crickets is like asking the sun if it ever shines. ;-)

  43. 43
    debbie says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    A cave is where those fuckers belong, not in my apartment.

  44. 44
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @debbie: The crickets differ with you on that. :-)

  45. 45

    @raven: All modern hard drives have that. Mac internal components are pretty much off the shelf and pretty much the same as any PC.

  46. 46

    @OzarkHillbilly: I may be wrong, but I don’t think the sun can talk.

  47. 47
    Baud says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: If the sun could talk, it would say “Vote Baud! for a brighter tomorrow.”

  48. 48
    But her emails!! says:

    Given that the GOP seems determined to continue their march towards full on fascism/authoritarianism, I wonder whether it will dawn on them or their donors first that completely lawless and corrupt people with absolute control of government power and its purse strings don’t need to beg for couch change from rich assholes. Seriously, Republicans deal in legislation that clocks in at over a trillion dollars, they’re willing to ignore all previously established norms to get this legislation passed, they ignore Trump’s corruption and emolument violations, they essentially bribe Senators in an effort to secure their votes, and they spend months spinning, lying and covering for what they’re doing. Why not just raid the government piggy bank directly? Why cut taxes and gouge Medicaid. Is it a lack of imagination? It certainly doesn’t seem to be a problem with ethics, integrity or concern for the law and Constitution.

  49. 49
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: Your point being?

  50. 50
    Eric S. says:

    @MJS: oh, i don’t know. I seem to (not) recall being in a bar one minute and feeling miserable in my bed 12 hours later on occasion.

  51. 51
    oldgold says:

    Earlier this year I reported that on the White House menu the Nothing Burger had been replaced by Eggs Benedict Arnold and Unseasoned Traitor Tots.

    Now I have been advised that a new Item has been added to the menu – The Trump Hero Sandwich. It features white bread, piles of baloney, Russian dressing and a very very small dill pickle.

  52. 52
    Kay says:

    So we don’t know if the Russian gov is planting news right now, right? Doesn’t “violent M13 gangs” sound weirdly specific, like “oh, THIS is what Trump supporters in VA will respond to!” – I mean besides your just knowing “generally racists and vaguely terrified”.

    Why would they stop? It was very successful.

  53. 53
    Kay says:

    And it doesn’t really have a beginning or and end- it’s Breitbart to Drudge to Fox to Trump to various and sundry mainstream outlets, in varying degrees- a big circle.

    I don’t even know how you would stop it.

  54. 54
    Baud says:

    @Kay: I wonder how many Democrats would respond to a “Vote Dem, Defeat Russia” message? I bet if the roles were reversed, GOP voters would eat it up. Sometimes it’s hard to figure out what our own voters want.

  55. 55
    Kay says:

    Ivana Trump, the first wife of Donald Trump, told CBS in an interview airing Sunday that she still speaks to the president once a week and that it was she who encouraged her ex-husband to use Twitter to bypass the media.
    “I said, ‘I think you should tweet. It’s a new way, a new technology,’” Ivana Trump said in a “CBS Sunday Morning” interview scheduled to air this weekend. “And if you want to get your words across rightly, without telling The New York Times, which is going to twist every single word of yours, this is how you get your message out.”

    Oh, yay. A new Trump on the scene. Getting her message out. I demand Tiffany. I want her on the Iran nuclear deal. It’s not fair she’s been shunned.

  56. 56
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @oldgold: Oooff. That was painful. ;-)

  57. 57
    Kay says:

    @Baud:

    God knows what stories are out there about “M13”. Remember the alleged beheadings at the border? That was probably mainstream on the Right before it bubbled up.

    How long has this been going on?

  58. 58
    Kay says:

    @Baud:

    Turns out Ivana needn’t have worried about the NYTimes, huh? As long as there’s no unauthorized server activity they’re fine with all of it!

  59. 59
    satby says:

    @raven: Glad you ‘re ok. That’s scary.

  60. 60
    NotMax says:

    @oldgold

    Say hello to Mom and before that, Origuy.

    ;)

  61. 61
    Immanentize says:

    Hi all. I am sitting on Logan on my way to HOU to go to my mother in law’s funeral tomorrow. I have been rereading the Book of Job. Never thought it would be a user manual! My son is with me. His biggest worry seems to be his physics homework. I love this boy!

  62. 62
    Kay says:

    John Harwood‏Verified account @JohnJHarwood 43m43 minutes ago
    More
    ex-GOP chair Steele: “you’ll see folks begin to splinter away who say, ‘I can’t take this crazy’ “

    This again. Yeah, sure you will. They’re so principled it’s amazing they’re all still around. Amazing how they cram down their disgust long enough to wait for the huge tax cut.

    Hope springs eternal. Any day now the Intellectual Right will re-appear. They’re as much unicorns as Libertarian Republicans.

  63. 63
    Immanentize says:

    To add to the Raven thoughts above, our cat, Toasty, will weave in front of our feet as we go down the stairs of his dry food bowl is empty. The Immp and I are used to it, but when my 87 year old mother visits…. I worry and make sure that bowl is full!!

  64. 64
  65. 65
    debbie says:

    @Kay:

    Five bucks says she doesn’t talk to him. Ivana’s just like him (“The Donald”), only in a skirt. The idea that he would heed her advice is ludicrous.

  66. 66
    debbie says:

    @Immanentize:

    Good for the kid! Safe journey to you both.

  67. 67
    satby says:

    @Immanentize: Young Imm sounds like such a great kid. Hope this is the last funeral for a very long while that you have to deal with. Condolences to you and all of your beloved Julie’s family.

  68. 68
    satby says:

    @rikyrah: Good morning 🙋.

    I think we should start a daily or weekly group therapy thread because I know current events have induced depression in a lot of people. Some days I can’t even comment and just barely lurk. I’m not the only one, I know.

  69. 69
    NotMax says:

    Anyone watched Charlie Jade?

    Kind of refreshing that the powers behind the series have done little to rein in the confusion and placed trust in the audience to keep up.

  70. 70
    Immanentize says:

    @satby: thanks! I think this will be quite enough for all. Then I’m hoping the business of our normal lives will help us through. That and our cat. I’ve said it before, but Toasty has been so critical to helping us through this. He has been super attentive to the Immp at his saddest moments.

  71. 71
    Immanentize says:

    @satby: I’m right there with you! But what kind of thread would it be if everyone lurked because we were traumatized. 😁

    ETA. JetBlue has good wifi

  72. 72
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    Kevin Drum:

    Well, funny story. It turns out that the 2013 audit was based on incomplete information because the IRS didn’t maintain case listings for most of the BOLO criteria. So TIGTA conducted a second audit. This one took a lot longer because they had to find and individually review all the cases themselves. Four years later it’s finally been released. Here’s how it shook out:

    927 cases requested
    919 cases received
    739 cases reviewed
    181 political cases identified
    146 political cases based on BOLO criteria

    And what did TIGTA find? Of these 146 cases which received extra review based on words in the organization’s name, a grand total of ten were tea-party groups. Here’s the whole chart:
    ….

    “We the people” and “pink slip” are associated with tea-party groups. In total, the IRS audited 111 left-wing groups and 19 right-wing groups based on BOLO criteria. (It’s unclear how the “healthcare” category broke out between left and right.)

    Note that this audit is not based on miscellaneous PowerPoint presentations or emails. It’s based on actual cases referred for audit. Of those, only 15 percent were conservative groups. That’s it. The vast majority were liberal groups.

    I know Kay mentioned this yesterday, but this is the first I’ve seen of the actual numbers. It’s really kind of impressive the way Republicans are able to bully the press into uncritically reporting their unfounded accusations. Every article on today’s GOP should begin with the words “The habitual liars known as the GOP….”

  73. 73
    MomSense says:

    @Immanentize:

    Safe travels, Imm and Immp. Please tell Immp not to worry. He’s going to crush that physics homework.

    @satby:

    Yeah, it’s getting exhausting (must be all this winning). I think it’s important for each of us to realize that it’s a good thing to take breaks from the shitshow for self care.

  74. 74
    Lapassionara says:

    @satby: Agree. These are depressing times.

  75. 75
    NotMax says:

    @satby

    Nice thing about B-J is that it also provides a forum to chat – a respite – without mentioning the T word.

  76. 76
    Baud says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: If we had a news network like Fox, that would be a week’s worth of programming right there. But the best we got is MSNBC.

  77. 77
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    Who said, “I obviously highly regard the fundamental principle stated in the Declaration of Independence that ‘all men are created equal.’”

    Answer: The same guy who holds “inflammatory views that Muslims shouldn’t be allowed in Congress, that Sharia law is already being implemented in parts of the Midwest and that “homosexual conduct should be illegal.” our soon to be Senator from the grate state of Ala-fucking-bama, Roy Moore!

    From a very good longish read over at TPM, Roy Moore’s Neo-Confederate Sugar Daddy Has Deep Ties To Secessionists

  78. 78
    Kay says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    I was disappointed in Kevin Drum at the time though- I felt he gave it WAY too much credit.

    The basic premise should have raised more questions. They were asking us to believe that a group of career IRS employees- middle managers- were specifically “targeting” Tea Party groups. That demands proof, because it doesn’t make any sense.

    They seized on the word “targeting” and concluded it meant “Tea Party groups” – a part of a larger group- when actually it
    meant “non-profits” . It was dumb to believe it. None of it made sense. The southern Ohio/Kentucky middle managers at the IRS are much more likely to BE Tea Party than they are to “target” Tea Party, but even more likely than that is that they don’t care. They’re just checking applications. They don’t care who the application comes from.

    Anyway- I like Drum but he got fooled by a dumb trick.

  79. 79
    MomSense says:

    @Immanentize:

    Cheryl posted one the other night but it turned into a knitting thread and that spooked Omnes.

  80. 80
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Baud: Sigh…

  81. 81
    Baud says:

    @MomSense: Were you knitting clowns?

  82. 82
    MomSense says:

    @Baud:

    Ha! I share OOs fear of the creepy things so no. Maybe we should teach OO to knit.

  83. 83
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kay: As one who gets fooled by dumb tricks on a regular basis, I hope you still like me too.

  84. 84
    Kay says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    I think it played into a certain kind of Lefty conceit- that political speech was threatened by those IRS flunkies- The State. It’s a Grand Cause to rally around, and that’s why they got duped.

    Because it never made any sense. People work at the IRS for 10, 20, 30 years, thru lots of Presidents. They don’t give a shit who submits an application and the idea that the understaffed IRS is fretting over Tea Party membership is ludicrous. Have you ever dealt with the IRS? They’re not ideological. They’re deliberately and carefully BLAND. It’s mounds of paper to process and that’s ALL it is.

  85. 85
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Kay:

    Something about this whole Ivana Ambassador story is just not computing at all. Right after the election, she was actively putting her name forward to be named as Ambassador to the Czech Republic. Now, that story has almost completely disappeared, and all we’re hearing is how furious Donald is that she turned down his offer.

    Now:

    “I was just offered to be the American ambassador to Czech Republic — and Donald told me, he said: ‘Ivana, if you want it, I give it to you,’” she said. “But I like my freedom. I like to do what I want to do, go wherever I want to go with whomever I want to go. And I can afford my lifestyle. OK, why would I go and say bye-bye to Miami in the winter, bye-bye to Saint-Tropez in the summer, and bye-bye to spring and fall in New York? I have a perfect life.”

    Then:

    Ivana Trump would approve of this article’s headline. “I’m quite known all around the world. … I’m known by the name Ivana. I really did not need the name Trump.” So she tells the New York Post in an interview garnering attention thanks to this line: “I will suggest that I be ambassador for the Czech Republic.” Yes, the 67-year-old Czech-speaker would like that role, though she’s apparently not sad to have missed out on a much more high-profile one. When asked about being first lady herself, she replied, “I don’t have envy for Melania [because she has] to start to pack the clothes and everything.”

    Honestly, I think she’s as much of a fabulist as her ex-husband and her three skanky children. I wouldn’t be at all surprised to learn that Donald never even offered her the job and that she’s just claiming she turned it down so she doesn’t have to admit that it was never on the table in the first place.

  86. 86
    MomSense says:

    @Kay:

    Anyway- I like Drum but he got fooled by a dumb trick.

    They were desperate for a scandal.

  87. 87
    Kay says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    These allegations should be questioned on their face. Without more, I question the idea that IRS middle managers in Ohio/Kentucky give a rat’s ass which fool submits an application for a certain tax status. I don’t believe that. They have to prove it.

    It’s like “voter impersonation fraud” which was accepted without question. They said voters were impersonating other voters- MILLIONS of them. Does that fit with anything you know to be true about voting? It’s crazy. No one has to accept these assertions. You’re allowed to use common sense.

  88. 88
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Immanentize:

    But what kind of thread would it be if everyone lurked because we were traumatized.

    Not a Top 10,000,that’s for sure.

  89. 89
    Kay says:

    @MomSense:

    But liberals bought that scandal for a reason, and they bought it because it was The State stepping on political speech and a Greater Cause. To a certain kind of liberal that’s like catnip.

    I love how everyone glided by the fact that they weren’t supposed to be using the tax exempt status for politicking anyway. The fucking rule violation by the Tea Party groups was ignored, because…Speech! They’re being silenced!

    The IRS were doing their jobs. They did NOTHING wrong and now they’re probably afraid to enforce regulations, so good work, everyone!

  90. 90
    Baud says:

    @Kay:

    To a certain kind of liberal that’s like catnip.

    We’ve learned that Putin understood us better than we did.

  91. 91
    Ksmiami says:

    @NotMax: do you have a towel?

  92. 92
    rikyrah says:

    @But her emails!!:
    They want to dismantle the New Deal.

  93. 93
  94. 94
    rikyrah says:

    @Kay:
    The anti immigration crew has been using MS-13 for awhile.
    I am from an urban areas that has gangs, and I just wonder how serious the MS-13 problem can be in these White suburbs?
    Seems to me to be nothing but a race baiting Boogeyman

  95. 95
    rikyrah says:

    @Immanentize:
    Sorry for another loss.😥
    Sending positive thoughts for you and little Imma

  96. 96
    Vheidi says:

    @NotMax: as far as I’m concerned you win today’s internets

  97. 97
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kay: Agreed. I had 2 thoughts when I first heard it:

    #1: “Well DUUUUHHHHH.”

    #2: “I’ll bet dollars to donuts their doing it to the left too.”

  98. 98
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Immanentize:

    Too many losses recently for you and Immp. I’m glad you have each other. Safe travels and good memories to you both.

  99. 99
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Immanentize: Imm, i must have missed the news about your MIL. So sorry to hear it – what an annis horribulus this has been for you. Take care of yourself and Immp, and stay Toasty!

  100. 100
    J R in WV says:

    That Photo::: is that Bill in Glendale’s LA below those menacing flying machines????

    I knew Southern California was a paradise too far, doomed to suffer horribly beneath the boot of fascist invaders, or local home grown fascists, whichever.

  101. 101
    The Lodger says:

    @Kay: Wait, if a supposed nonprofit group has a political sounding name, what’s the problem with looking for political activity? Other than RWNJ Harumph argle bargle…

  102. 102
    My Truth Hurts says:

    “Sick and tired” – the war cry of old white angry impotent men everywhere.

  103. 103
    TomatoQueen says:

    The latest update memo from our acting Commissioner re the agency and Maria: 24 employees still not found, but we’re starting to do business again.
    A Message to All SSA Employees

    Subject: Hurricane Maria Update

    Hurricane Maria brought on massive devastation to Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Rebuilding efforts and normalcy will obviously take time, as there is much to overcome. Our offices in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands remain closed indefinitely. We continue to assess when we might be able to open a small number of offices for basic services.
    Currently, we have 24 employees who are unaccounted for in Puerto Rico. We continue to work with the Office of the Inspector General to reach the remaining employees. Social Security benefit payments are now being delivered daily to San Juan. All 120 post offices are open on a shortened daily schedule of 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m., with a few open until 4:00 p.m. The post office will hold our checks for 45 days.

    Offices in our New York region, outside of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, have been calling claimants who had appointments with our offices on the islands. If they are able to reach the claimants, they are trying to take their claims and expedite adjudication, especially in cases where individuals are filing for retirement. Staff in our Atlanta region are also working with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to assist evacuees from the U.S. Virgin Islands who have evacuated to the Atlanta area.

    I will keep you updated on the status of our employees and offices in the affected areas as additional details come in. Keep those impacted by these storms in your thoughts.

    Nancy A. Berryhill
    Acting Commissioner

    We also had a notice of retirements and reassignments effective Jan 1; more and more of our senior management are “acting” officials. The current acting commissioner succeeded an acting one, who was in that role through almost all the previous administration until her retirement in June. At no time was it ever rumored that she would be nominated for the full role, requiring of course the excruciating Senate confirmation process. As she did a fine job and the agency continues (in spite of some media-fed utter bullshit), I suspect the acting role will become the default for everybody. How to avoid a garbage fire.

  104. 104
    Mike G says:

    You can’t reason with Congressional Republicans, You can’t shame them, the only option is to beat them https://t.co/FeePd2E2FJ
    — Dan Pfeiffer (@danpfeiffer) October 4, 2017

    Listen, and understand! That Terminator Republican Congressman is out there! It can’t be bargained with. It can’t be reasoned with. It doesn’t feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop… ever, until you are dead! broke!

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