Open Thread: The Way We (Are Forced to) Live Now

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Bonus [head*desk]…

Pompeo translated: If the GOP wins — whatever the backstory — it’s the will of Gawd and the Great American People. If the Dems win, then somebody must’ve cheated.

243 replies
  1. 1
    Baud says:

    If the Dems win, then somebody must’ve cheated.

    If we win, we can and should ignore their lies.

  2. 2
    Sebastian says:

    @Baud:
    When we win we have to start punishing this behavior. For encouragement of others.

    Heads must roll. Literally.

  3. 3
    WereBear says:

    @Sebastian: Completely agree. No more Nice Democrat.

    Like sociopaths everywhere, the Republicans rely on our own desires to see sensible civilization prevail, and the impulse to normalize Trump. But it’s not normal and should never be normal and the more we push back against the Potemkin village of media that tries to insist it is so, we have to proclaim the unfitness and illegality of the whole messy criminal conspiracy that it has become.

    They are trying to kill us.

  4. 4
    Baud says:

    WaPo

    In the latest in a string of dangerous encounters between Russian and NATO military jets, a U.S. Navy plane came within five feet of a Russian Su-27 jet on Monday, according to the State Department. The incident occurred in international airspace above the Black Sea, raising renewed concerns over the risk of midair collisions in Europe

    If it weren’t for the potential loss of life, I’d almost like to see Russia shoot down one of our jets just to see how much Trump apologizes to Putin for it.

  5. 5
    debbie says:

    @Sebastian:

    Can’t wait for that. It has to start now. Where are the Obama administration’s spokespeople and why aren’t they pushing back against the bogus claims that they were spying on Trump?

  6. 6
    Baud says:

    @debbie: They do it all the time. I barely watch MSNBC and I catch them on there.

  7. 7
    Baud says:

    Speaking of Dems, they should make hay of this.

    Europe’s economy grew faster than the U.S. last year

    We are the slowest growing major economy. Europe and Asia are kicking out ass.

  8. 8
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @WereBear:

    No more Nice Democrat.

    No more Nice Democrat would mean that Democrats as a whole wouldn’t attend SOTU tonight, for starters. They’re going to sit there for over one hour listening to Trump stumble as he reads from a teleprompter while knowing that Trump’s imps in Congress are working hard to protect Trump and deflect from Russia’s wrongdoing. While Democrats are listening to Trump’s lies, Congressional Republicans are “investigating” the FBI and DOJ to protect their President. The decision of Republicans to release Nunes’ propaganda memo while not allowing Democrats to release a rebuttal says it all.

    This is not normal and our side needs to stop acting as if it is.

  9. 9
    debbie says:

    @Baud:

    I don’t watch MSNBC (no cable) and I’m not hearing anything. That may be part of the problem — preaching only to the believers.

  10. 10
    Baud says:

    @debbie: Or being silenced by mainstream media.

  11. 11
    Patricia Kayden says:

    Joe Scarborough is on fire this morning tearing down Trump and Congressional Republicans. “This is the shredding of all legal and constitutional norms”.

  12. 12
    Baud says:

    @Sebastian:

    When we win we have to start punishing this behavior. 

    This will never happen. As you see from this short thread, people always devolve to second guessing Dems first.

    I’m out.

  13. 13
    bystander says:

    Inspired by Betty’s post about the ooga booga ad the repubs are running, I think we should have an ad with twitler at a conference table surrounded by shadows. In the shadows you can make out Pence slitting Jefferson’s throat, while Kelly in uniform is gutting Washington and Sarah is garrotting Lincoln. Then Kelly Anne climbs up on the table, turns her back on us as she walks toward twitler while hiking her skirt. Close up on twitler licking his lascivious ruffled lips. Fade to black.

    Just thinking.

  14. 14
    TS says:

    @Patricia Kayden: The SOTU is about done. When Obama was President the GOP turned it into a partisan event. If the dems do not attend when there is next a dem president, the republicans will not attend. Republicans see bipartisanship as the democrats doing the bidding of republicans and following the law of the land and the precedents of office, while they do anything needed to stay in power.

    The silence of Paul Ryan & the Turtle while trump removes any vestige of democracy rings loudly.

  15. 15
    Kay says:

    Russian interference investigation is the opposite of Watergate. Watergate was journalists uncovering a scandal. This wasn’t reported until they appointed a special counsel.

    Heck, the NYTimes exonerated Trump on their front page a week before the election specifically ON RUSSIA.

    If the Washington Post has waited for indictments in Watergate then Trump’Russia would be like Watergate. But there wouldn’t have been a Watergate so the comparison doesn’t even hold to that extent.

    I mean, after people are indicted they have to report it. That’s not actually uncovering anything. We could get the same thing by reading the indictments when they’re posted. They’re reporting palace intrigue on a criminal investigation. They didn’t spur the criminal investigation or contribute anything substantive to it. Hell, the NYTimes actively denied it existed.

  16. 16
    rikyrah says:

    Good Morning Everyone 😄😄😄

  17. 17
    Patricia Kayden says:

    Peggy Noonan. Tom Brokaw. **switches off MSNBC**

  18. 18
    rikyrah says:

    The Democrats on Nunes’ Committee better release their findings.

  19. 19
  20. 20

    Historical side note: The deputy FBI director during Watergate, Mark Felt, turned out to be “Deep Throat.”https://t.co/Ido4owYvEG— Taegan Goddard (@politicalwire) January 29, 2018

  21. 21
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @TS:

    If the dems do not attend when there is next a dem president, the republicans will not attend.

    So? I’m not understanding the need to pretend that Trump is a legitimate President when there is more than ample evidence that he got in with the help of a hostile, foreign, has been superpower. If Republicans never attend a SOTU under the next Democratic President, that would be fine with me.

  22. 22
    rikyrah says:

    @Sebastian:
    As a poster here says:

    Wipe them out. All of them.

  23. 23
    Betty Cracker says:

  24. 24
    O. Felix Culpa says:

    Reposting from thread below: Good morning from satby, who is in Thailand frolicking with elephants. I’d post a photo of a happy elephant but lack the skillz and time. Must leave to gambol with goats. 😈

    ETA: Good morning from me too.

  25. 25
    David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch says:

    @Patricia Kayden: if only someone had warned Joe not to tear down Hillz and normalize Drumpf

  26. 26
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Betty Cracker: Where is the outrage from Congressional Dems who will sit and listen to Trump tonight like little lambs? If Trump ignoring that law is a constitutional crisis, then Dems need to act like it. If President Obama had done 1/100th of the nonsense that Trump has done, Repubs would have burned down the Capitol by now (as Scarborough just noted).

  27. 27
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch: Joe and pretty much the entire MSM normalized and idolized Trump during the election cycle. They’re waking up but it’s too late. Voters and Mueller are the folks who will turn this around, hopefully.

  28. 28
    Bobby Thomson says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch: Joe did have flashes of independence but then showed up for a pre-election ritual humiliation anyway. Obvious blackmail but I’m not sure what anyone had after he and Mika went public.

  29. 29
    Thoughtful David says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch:
    Yeah, this is one of the things that really pisses me off about Toobin’s “regret.” People were yelling and screaming that he and the rest of the msm were constantly committing false equivalency, but they ignored the people who were actually right. Now, he suddenly realizes he was doing it. This is an astounding lack of self-awareness among self-proclaimed and proclaimed-by-others “smart” people.
    Fuck him and the horse he rode in on.

  30. 30
    David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch says:

    @Kay: and each time an indictment is filed they act shocked because they completely buy into the narrative that nothing is there.

  31. 31
    David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch says:

    I stumbled on to this by accident:

    Congress voted 517-5 to impose sanctions on Russia

    Congress voted 457-47 to impose the Magnitsky Act on Russia

    Inexplicably, there’s only 1 person who voted against both sanctions acts. Can you guess who (hint: it’s not Rohrabacher)

  32. 32
    TS says:

    @Patricia Kayden:

    If Republicans never attend a SOTU under the next Democratic President, that would be fine with me.

    Fine with me too – but it then becomes a party event, no point in calling it the SOTU – It will be the state of a political party – which for the current republicans – rotten to the core.

  33. 33
  34. 34
    sherparick says:

    Its not just Trump. The Republicans and the donor class that controls them (I think roughly a 1,000 to at most 10,000 super rich men and a few women) are all in in allying with Russia to establish oligarchy in the U.S. and loot the country. One reason he touts the tax law so much, it reminds them what a return on their investment (the donors donations to Trump and the Republican Party) he already paid them.

  35. 35
    David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch says:

    @debbie: he’s not a democrat

  36. 36
    James E Powell says:

    @Sebastian:

    Never happens. If Democrats win it will be “looking forward not backward” and spirit of unity and High Broderism and Democrats need to reach out to racists and religious bigots and that will be what the Democrats are saying.

    The nation will have to have a catastrophe greater than the 2007-2009 collapse in order to bring about the sea change we need. Until then it’s just going to be a constant rear-guard action.

  37. 37
    sherparick says:

    @Thoughtful David: It is more self-awareness than anyone at the FNYT has shown the last year.

  38. 38
    Kay says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch:

    I watched All The President’s Men a hundred years ago, so don’t quote me, but weren’t the key factors there that the Washington Post uncovered facts that led to indictments? “Before”. That was the risk they took. They did not actually have a grand jury to hand it to them.

    Printing the lists of charges in an indictment is news, but it’s no different than listing the week’s real estate transfers. I can get those on the county recorder website or in the local paper, my choice. Not a lot of “value add” there.

    It’s the opposite of Watergate. It’s Watergate if the Washington Post had exonerated Nixon and the justice system had pursued him anyway.

  39. 39
    David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch says:

    @Kay: these are good points.

  40. 40
  41. 41
    Kay says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch:

    I agree with you though that the coverage of this was dictated by their belief that there is nothing there. I don’t know what this belief is based on but they don’t have a great track record on judging character, so it could easily be based on bullshit.

    We’ll see if they were right. If they were wrong they missed a huge event.

  42. 42
  43. 43
    bystander says:

    Tom Brokaw wasted no time in reminding everyone of how shallow and self-regarding he is in all his self importance. Peggy Noonan quickly followed suit.

  44. 44
    David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch: I think that hint was confusing.

    While the person in question isn’t a democrat, he does caucus with the democrats.

    It’s Wilmer.

    Voting against the Magnitsky Act is really weird because it targets bankers (money launderers) and people who commit torture/murder.

  45. 45
    debbie says:

    So Trump has five days to decide whether or not to release the Nunes memo. What’s the over/under on him not releasing it?

  46. 46
    debbie says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch:

    Googling tells me he said he did that to protect the Iran sanctions. Already my brain is in a pretzel over the logic.

  47. 47
    gene108 says:

    @debbie:

    Where are the Obama administration’s spokespeople and why aren’t they pushing back against the bogus claims that they were spying on Trump?

    Sitting by their phones, hoping this is the day Chuck Todd calls me and asks me to be on his show…

    It is not their fault the media decided to not give them a chance ar rebuttal.

  48. 48
    ThresherK says:

    @Patricia Kayden: I’m with you. The Rs will have a little shitfit if the Dems don’t attend. Or they’ll have a little shitfit when the next Dem pres has an SOTU, and the Rs won’t attend.

    Make those fuckers react for once.

  49. 49
    Kay says:

    @sherparick:

    I agree with this. It doesn’t make any sense to me that Putin wants to “create chaos” and puts all this work in for this vague, undefined goal. These explanations sound to me like “Putin does X…….victory!”

    No one does this. No one goes to these elaborate lengths with no goal in mind. They want something. “Chaos” is not a good enough answer. I know they didn’t want sanctions. I’m pretty damn sure of that, and they’re not getting them thanks to their manipulation of Donald Trump. That’s a hell of a lot more specific than “chaos”.

  50. 50

    I’m pleased to say that David Farenthold must have read my last night’s post.

    Good that some reporters are continuing to report on The Orange One’s finances.

  51. 51
    gene108 says:

    @Patricia Kayden:

    The decision of Republicans to release Nunes’ propaganda memo while not allowing Democrats to release a rebuttal says it all.

    They should just release whatever the hell they want.

    There are no rules.We are at war. One side is going to win and rule and the other is going to be irrelevant.

  52. 52
    Thoughtful David says:

    @sherparick:
    That’s a low bar.

  53. 53
    Betty Cracker says:

    @debbie: My guess is the memo is more valuable to Trump if it’s not released. It’s a partisan hack-job built on bullshit, as will become immediately evident if it’s released and can be analyzed. Trump will likely heighten the drama by dropping dark hints on Twitter, etc. Spinning up bullshit is the one talent he has.

  54. 54
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    9. Has President Trump released his tax returns?

    No.

    9a. Would we be able to answer all of these questions more clearly if he did?

    Yes.

  55. 55
    Kay says:

    I think the place where Trump is most vulnerable politically is not Russian scandal, but instead the fact that Trump is a hard Right Republican and people don’t really like hard Right Republican policy.

    I read yesterday that the European “populists” are going in a different direction than Trump- they are beefing up the safety net and government programs.

    Trump is the worst of both worlds. You get racist hard Right “social” policy with none of the perks.

    Key to his appeal was he was NOT a Republican. Supposedly. And key to that was he would NOT push Republican policy.

  56. 56
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @gene108: Completely agree with you. There is no reason to act as if we are living under a normal administration. Let caution fly to the wind and do what you have to do to expose this “President”. Democrats should boldly release their own memo as soon as Nunes’ propaganda is released to the general public.

  57. 57

    @OzarkHillbilly: I liked that.

    I just had a conversation with Laura Rozen on Twitter. She was pondering why the Republicans would want to put more attention on Carter Page via the Nunes memo, which is a good question. The whole Page affair needs more light on it. Why did Trump name Page as a foreign policy advisor? What was the dynamic among Jeff Sessions, J. D. Gordon, Sam Clovis, Paul Manafort, and others who put that foreign policy team announced in March 2016 together? What was the first FISA warrant on him for? (That was in summer 2106 or earlier.) What did they get on him that justified renewing that warrant? How did he get a Ph.D. with his incoherent mumblings?

    And so on.

  58. 58
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @James E Powell: If Trump’s blatant disregard for the Constitution isn’t cataclysmic enough, then we deserve what we get. As Senator McCaskill just stayed, we are already living under a constitutional crisis.

  59. 59
    debbie says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    He would need impulse control to choose to sit on the memo. Ergo, memo released!

  60. 60
    debbie says:

    @Kay:

    Undermining democratic institutions is exactly what Putin wants. Call it chaos or not, that in fact is his goal. Putin has shown this to be so time and time again. The Republicans falling for this are falling for it because they’re idiots, period.

  61. 61
    debbie says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    Because they’re stupid. Because the guy bossing them around is even stupider. Don’t expect logic from these people!

  62. 62
    Mary G says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch: Wilmer?

    ETA: missed your #44, sorry. I do think there might to be an investigation into Wilmer and Jill after the Dems win the House on November.

  63. 63
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: I, for one, am delighted that more attention is being paid to Carter Page.

  64. 64
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Mary G: The Senate’s vote on the increased sanctions which Trump waved away yesterday was 98-2. Guess who was one of the two?

  65. 65
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Patricia Kayden:

    as Senator McCaskill just stayed, we are already living under a constitutional crisis

    Claire is guilty of hyperbole with her statement. Presidents and their administrations have long prioritized which laws they enforce. When Obama chose not to deport Dreamers, it was not a constitutional crises. When he decided to not enforce federal marijuana laws, it was not a constitutional crises. We might be in a constitutional crises, but not because trump isn’t enforcing a law she likes.

  66. 66
    Gin & Tonic says:

    Yeah, I should have read the whole thread. Apologies for redundancy.

  67. 67
  68. 68
    Citizen Scientist says:

    good morning everyone. Still trying to figure out why Nunes is carrying water for the Dump admin. Farenthold needs to get on it.

  69. 69
    manyakitty says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: David Farenthold is the reason I began subscribing to the Washington Post. Can’t beat shoe-leather journalism.

  70. 70
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Citizen Scientist: Because Nunes is a scum sucking piece of shit. Next question?

  71. 71

    @Citizen Scientist: He has shady Russian connections himself.

  72. 72
    No Drought No More says:

    After hearing of yesterday’s coerced resignation, I called my congressman- Jared Huffman, D-Ca.- to inquire just how he and the democratic party intended to respond to the unfolding coup. I was shined on and insulted by whoever answered his D.C. phone in a tone of voice so goddamn insulting the congressman created a political enemy. I want him out of office now. I’m so goddamn sick of gutless democrats..

  73. 73
    Shalimar says:

    So Pompeo is prepping the ground to say that Russians helped Democrats this November, regardless of what the actual evidence shows.

  74. 74
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: The Republican Party and its “base” are almost wholly comprised of conspiracy-minded idiots. They don’t know or care what’s in the ReleaseTheMemo memo, and they certainly don’t read things beyond headlines at best, and they are super gullible like you wouldn’t believe. The point is that it’s A Thing that allows them to feel smart with complicated details and then empowered to say “BUT WHATABOUT?” and then go on smugly secure in their customary blanket of stupid.

  75. 75
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    @Kay:

    I agree with this. It doesn’t make any sense to me that Putin wants to “create chaos” and puts all this work in for this vague, undefined goal. These explanations sound to me like “Putin does X…….victory!”

    My take is he wanted a more Russian friendly atmosphere in Washington so would discreetly help the GOP candidate in return for easing of the sanctions but Trump being an idiot and cheater threw himself at the Russians.

  76. 76
    rikyrah says:

    Story after story like this…

    But…it was supposed to be the CRIMINALS, REMEMBER?

    Ripped Apart: A Real-Life Example of the Trump Administration’s Deportation Policy

    “It’s just a devastating situation.”

    There’s a sad, somber tone in Jacob Leonce’s voice as he tries to smile. He looks much younger than his 45 years tell you he should look. He wears jeans and a long-sleeved white t-shirt, a casual dress compared to others around him. His skin is a shade of mocha, a reflexion of his Caribbean birth and upbringing. Seated beside him in church this morning sit his two sons, both under the age of 10. Like many their age, they wish they could be doing something else rather than sitting through a Sunday service. All they know is that their Dad wanted them to be there today.

    Because this was no average Sunday service at the New England Pentecostal Church in Pelham, New Hampshire. This was a service dedicated to Jacob, an immigrant from the Caribbean nation of St. Lucia, who was facing imminent deportation. Despite community groups rallying to his cause, a campaign to raise awareness by his pastor Bishop Stanley Choate, and a group of nearly 30 community leaders who attended Jacob’s most recent ICE check-in, there seemed to be little hope for Jacob. After having his stay of deportation appeal denied in December, Jacob knew that his time in the United States was limited. Despite the presence of multiple media outlets in attendance willing to share Jacob’s story, there wasn’t a whole lot that could be done for Jacob at the 11th hour.

    Jacob is what this administration would refer to as a bad hombre. He came here on a sponsorship from the Caribbean nation of Saint Lucia in 1999. He is gainfully employed as a landscaper. He pays his taxes. He has no criminal record. He has a spouse and two children who are American citizens. He attends church and is active within his church community. As today’s service showed, he is respected and admired by a congregation whose members openly embraced and wept for him when it was announced that today would be his last service. Despite his initial melancholy, Jacob became more and more animated as the service progressed and by the time he spoke at the end of the service, he confided that he believed his deportation was part of God’s plan and he intended to embrace it.

  77. 77
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    @Betty Cracker: Yes, it’s pure conspiracy theory stuff from what I’ve heard. If they did have real evidence of a conspiracy it would be out already.

    The whole Conservative movement is sliding fast into Cult and Conspiracy theory land. It’s not even Conservatism can’t be failed, it can only be Failed. It’s all evidence of a conservative failing are lies produced by the Illumanity kind of things.

  78. 78
    opiejeanne says:

    @No Drought No More: You’re a fucking idiot.

    You didn’t get the obsequious response you think you deserve and now you want to get rid of a Democrat whose grasp on that district is probably tenuous.

  79. 79

    @rikyrah: Makes you wonder about the complicity of MSM outlets praising T for his immigration “compromise” which is nothing but a ransom note with a gun to the head of Dreamers.

  80. 80
    MomSense says:

    @schrodingers_cat:

    My prediction that when this all comes out we will learn that our president is a Russian Agent and most of his administration and elected Republicans are either compromised or worse. I think we will also find out that many of media outlets are also compromised and/or infiltrated.

  81. 81
    MomSense says:

    Julian Assange sent private messages (DM on twitter) to an account he thought belonged to Sean Hannity offfering info on Mark Warner.

  82. 82
    Jeffro says:

    @rikyrah:

    The Democrats on Nunes’ Committee better release their findings.

    If they wait any longer, we won’t have a republic for them to help put back together. Classified info or not, ‘norms’ or not, they need to cause a HUGE stir – not just at the SOTU but every day. They need to tell the country what they know and make a stand.

  83. 83
    germy says:

    New from me: Julian Assange privately told Sean Hannity's secret Twitter account to use "other channels" so he could tell him "news about (Mark) Warner," the Dem leading the Senate's Russia investigation.It wasn't Sean Hannity. It was a woman in Texas.https://t.co/Y686MJ3OqN— Ben Collins (@oneunderscore__) January 30, 2018

  84. 84
    bystander says:

    @opiejeanne: Thanks! Surprising number of “Democrats” who hate Democrats.

  85. 85
    Lapassionara says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: the president does have some discretion regarding some types of laws (particularly with immigration and criminal laws) but he takes an oath to “faithfully execute the laws” passed by Congress. Trump has appointed people to cabinet positions and agencies who disdain the laws they are supposed to enforce. Eg, Mark Mulvaney, who has changed the mission of the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau so that it now does not protect consumers.

    If presidential discretion extends to reversing laws passed by Congress, then we are truly no longer a representative democracy.

    Good morning all

  86. 86
    Betty Cracker says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: You’re comparing apples and anvils. Obama’s selective immigration enforcement WRT DACA wasn’t harming the US — it just meant kids who grew up in America weren’t being rounded up and deported. Trump’s refusal to detach his lips from Putin’s ass is a national security threat since it is enabling a hostile foreign autocrat who is actively weakening America.

  87. 87
    germy says:

    Meanwhile…

    Kucinich is going to fuck things up in Ohio.

    But Kucinich does have a workable strategy. The primary is very soon, in May. He has massive, if not always positive, name ID. He faces a field led by former Consumer Financial Protection Bureau director Richard Cordray, but also including State Supreme Court Justice Bill O’Neill, State Senator Joe Schiavoni and former state legislator Connie Pillich. In a state with no primary runoffs, Kucinich could win the nomination with a plurality, and his choice of Akron city council member Tara Samples indicates he’s running as the regional favorite of northeast Ohio. An early poll shows him running a relatively close second to Cordray on the strength of support from his home turf. With luck, and likely a sustained negative focus on the front-runner from candidates in both parties, Kucinich could pull out a primary win.

    He’d then likely go on to get drubbed by Republican front-runner Mike DeWine. But defeat has never slowed down Kucinich before. So long as he’s willing to play the “populist” game on terms acceptable to Fox News, he’ll probably be welcome back there, and if all else fails, there’s always another campaign to wage.

  88. 88
  89. 89
    MomSense says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    I made the mistake of visiting hashtag deep state on twitter. Those mags idiots are convinced releasing the memo will expose clinton/fbi/dem treason. They are completely brainwashed.

  90. 90
    No Drought No More says:

    (Per Daily Kos]: “The Trump administration informed lawmakers Monday that new Russia sanctions called for in a bipartisan bill passed last year are not necessary yet because the measure is already “serving as a deterrent.”
    In other words, the sanctions that Trump will apply are … none. The White House is arguing that just having a sanctions law, without any sanctions is enough”.

    Russia Owns Trump (ROT), end of story. To presume otherwise at this point is to betray the country. I concluded that months ago. Democrats like Ted Lieu have called Trump an outright liar a dozen times over since then, and the sun rose the next morning. But congressional democrats (including Lieu) still pretend they need permission from Mueller before hurling the righteous accusation that Trump is a traitor before he can be attacked accordingly.

    Recall congressional democrats employed the same wait-and-see attitude prior the 2003 War in Iraq. Remember the vaunted “U.N. report”, which was inevitably ignored while Dick Cheney bulldozed though their feeble equivocating and the war came? Then remind yourself the party leadership is still too ashamed to cop to their role in that catastrophe.

  91. 91
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Lapassionara: @Betty Cracker: Goose? Meet Gander.

  92. 92
    debbie says:

    @MomSense:

    Hey, been waiting to see your nym. I saw your kid’s comment about Dollar Tree and couldn’t stop laughing! Gotta love little kids!

  93. 93
    debbie says:

    @germy:

    Not ruin, but he will make a mockery of the Ohio Dems.

  94. 94
    Jeffro says:

    Btw I know no one here reads the NYT anymore, but David Leonhardt is doing good work over there:

    Here’s a challenge: Read the latest coverage about Rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general, and see if you can figure out what he is supposed to have done wrong.

    Good luck. It’s not easy.

    The so-called Nunes memo — an effort by House Republicans to cast aspersions on the Russia investigation — evidently singles out Rosenstein for criticism. The memo, which may be released soon, suggests that he was wrong to extend a wiretap on Carter Page, a Trump campaign adviser.

    The details are complicated, and you can dig into them in The Times’s coverage. The short version: There is no evidence that Rosenstein made a mistake. Page, after all, has had the kind of contact with the Russian government that should interest F.B.I. investigators.

    Instead of evidence, the memo engages in the same dark and misleading conspiracy theories that have characterized other efforts by President Trump’s allies to discredit the Russia investigation. But the substance of the claims isn’t really the point. Distraction is the point, and the distraction campaign is having an impact.

    Fox News and some other parts of the Republican-friendly media spend hours repeating the conspiracies, and many voters now believe them. “The current moment is different from Watergate,” The Washington Post’s Greg Sargent wrote yesterday. “There is a massive propaganda apparatus out there — one that reaches deep into the right-wing media and into the Congress that has been pushing the alt-narrative.”

    And Trump not only fired James Comey, the F.B.I. director once leading the inquiry, last year, but he has now succeeded in pushing out Andrew McCabe, the deputy F.B.I. director. In both cases, team Trump has justified the moves with dark, misleading suggestions of bias. Now, it seems, team Trump is on the cusp of accelerating a whisper campaign against Rosenstein, who oversees Robert Mueller, the special counsel leading the Russia investigation.

    In truth, Rosenstein is a Republican — appointed by Trump — who built up a strong reputation over years in the Justice Department. His biggest career blemish was his brief willingness last year to bend to White House pressure and give Trump cover for Comey’s firing.

    Since then, though, Rosenstein has chosen to back the rule of law over the rule of Trump. Rosenstein not only appointed Mueller to take over the Russia investigation; he has also defended Mueller — another Republican with a strong bipartisan reputation — against the similar charges of bias.

    The smearing of both men, like the smearing of Comey, is a ploy. At the least, it is meant to call into question the ultimate findings of the Russia investigation. At the worst, the smearing is meant to make it politically possible to replace one or both with Trump loyalists who don’t believe in the rule of law.

    Related: House Republicans voted yesterday to release the Nunes memo, a move that Justice Department officials have called “extremely reckless.”

    Tom Nichols, a Naval War College professor, wrote: “The memo itself is far less important than the fact that GOP Congressmen are now at war with our own law enforcement and intelligence community, something in a lifetime of being a Republican I never expected to see. This will end badly.

  95. 95
    MomSense says:

    @debbie:

    How are you? I still laugh about it when I see one of those stores. He had a point!
    It’s been mayhem on my end. As the oldest of my generation I’m the representative for our branch of the family especially since my dad can’t travel. Anyway elder relative passed away so I’ve been occupied with that.

  96. 96

    @OzarkHillbilly: The Russia sanctions bill explicitly named the urgent national security threat it was meant to address and was passed with veto-proof majorities in both chambers. It’s not even in the same universe as DACA enforcement. Claire is right, and you are wrong.

  97. 97
    rikyrah says:

    @gene108:

    They should just release whatever the hell they want.

    There are no rules.We are at war. One side is going to win and rule and the other is going to be irrelevant.

    EXACTLY.

    DA PHUQ ?

    OF COURSE, they should be releasing their report.

  98. 98
    Brachiator says:

    Open thread, eh?

    The early reaction to Black Panther has been tremendous.

    The first superhero movie to star a black lead character – with Chadwick Boseman playing an African king, and director Ryan Coogler at the helm – had its world premiere on Monday night in Hollywood.

    After the credits ran, social media’s cup runneth over, with early reaction praising the Marvel film for celebrating black excellence at a level never seen before in the genre, and predicting Black Panther will render audiences speechless.

    Someone should send Stephen Miller a ticket. And also get Trump to screen it at the White House during Black History Month.

  99. 99
    Chyron HR says:

    @rikyrah:

    These stories are all horrible but after a while they take on a recurring theme of, “Joe Jew was beloved by the community but of course we couldn’t do anything when the Nazis came for him.”

  100. 100
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Shalimar: And we would believe Pompei because …?

  101. 101
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Betty Cracker: Remember Iran/Contra? Was that illegal? Absolutely. A constitutional crises? No. I repeat, she is engaging in hyperbole.

  102. 102

  103. 103
    Just One More Canuck says:

    @opiejeanne: Huffman seems to be pretty secure. He’s won his three elections to congress by 70-30, 75-25 and 77-23 (%), and from what I can see from a quick search, seems to be pretty liberal. The person on the other end of the line probably figured out in a nano-second that No Drought is an idiot (blithering, fucking or otherwise). That’s assuming that the call went exactly as ND said it did (yeah, right), if it even occurred at all

  104. 104
    LAO says:

    I am no fan of Rick Wilson (remember Senator Max Cleland?) but I have enjoyed watching he turn his venom on the Republican Party. Today’s piece, really delivers.

  105. 105
    Brachiator says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Wow. From the story you leaked.

    In fact, Page was already on the FBI’s radar as far back as 2013, when they obtained recordings of Russian foreign intelligence officials discussing targeting Page for recruitment. FBI officials at that time interviewed Page and warned him that he was being targeted – Page admitted that he had been in contact with these officers (not knowing they were Russian intelligence operatives) and has said that he shared “immaterial information and publicly available research documents” with the Russian spies.

    Sounds like the FBI was doing its job, and even were extremely fair with Page.

    This makes it tragic for the country that the GOP is going along with Trump’s political conspiracy theater.

    And what would happen to the country if the FBI were full of Trump loyalists?

  106. 106
    glory b says:

    @Jeffro: “This will end badly.”

    Well, we know that. The question is for who?

  107. 107
    Doug R says:

    @Patricia Kayden:

    No more Nice Democrat would mean that Democrats as a whole wouldn’t attend SOTU tonight, for starters. They’re going to sit there for over one hour listening to Trump stumble as he reads from a teleprompter while knowing that Trump’s imps in Congress are working hard to protect Trump and deflect from Russia’s wrongdoing. While Democrats are listening to Trump’s lies, Congressional Republicans are “investigating” the FBI and DOJ to protect their President. The decision of Republicans to release Nunes’ propaganda memo while not allowing Democrats to release a rebuttal says it all.

    This is not normal and our side needs to stop acting as if it is.

    John Lewis and Maxine Waters are NOT attending, so there’s that.

  108. 108

    @Brachiator: I think when we get a Democratic Congress, there will be an investigation into the FBI.

  109. 109
    opiejeanne says:

    @Just One More Canuck: Thanks. I was looking at the territory involved and made an assumption that was false because the red parts of his district are pretty large empty spaces. Duh.

    I hope there is some Democrat worthy of the title that we can get behind to unseat Nunes, but he seems to be in a very red district but the demographics show that it shouldn’t be: whites are the minority. The only way around that is to get everyone registered to vote and then get them to vote.

  110. 110
    Spanky says:

    @glory b:

    @Jeffro: “This will end badly.”

    Well, we know that. The question is for who?

    Well, no. The question is “For whom?”

    Your welcome. I’m not an optimist, but I’m still leaning towards the good guys. Our institutions and institutional memory is still strong in this country.

  111. 111
    opiejeanne says:

    @bystander: I am so sick of these people that anyone around me risks being spattered in spittle.

  112. 112
    Le Comte de Monte Cristo, fka Edmund Dantes says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    If I were a terror planner, I’d specifically target DACA deportees for recruitment and consulting. They have a deep, intimate knowledge of the workings of American society and an ability to identify soft points while being pretty damned embittered. Plus, give them adequate alternate identities, they could move about undetected.

  113. 113
    debbie says:

    @MomSense:

    So sorry to read about your relative. I’m sure you’re being a rock for your family, but be sure to save some time for yourself to recover. And stay warm!

  114. 114
    opiejeanne says:

    @Spanky: While we’re correcting the grammar of others, it’s “you’re welcome” as in “you are welcome” That’s how that little apostrophe works,, replacing some of the letters in various phrases when it’s (it is) not showing possession, with the exception of “its” which is possessive but uses no apostrophe. .

  115. 115
    Jeffro says:

    Rick Wilson tweeted a line from the SOTU about “a year of Russiagate is enough”

    …then said, “my bad, that was actually Nixon at his 1973 SOTU, with ‘Watergate’ in place of ‘Russiagate’ “

    SO TRUE

  116. 116
    debbie says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    For sure, that NY office should be investigated.

  117. 117
    Le Comte de Monte Cristo, fka Edmund Dantes says:

    @Jeffro:

    So what it really comes down to is that once again, the existence of a vast right wing conspiracy is proven.

  118. 118
    Jeffro says:

    @opiejeanne: ‘like’ 👏🏻

  119. 119
    debbie says:

    @rikyrah:

    No, that would then be yet another distraction. If the Nunes memo comes out, blitz the media outlets and state the actual (as opposed to alternative) facts.

  120. 120
    Le Comte de Monte Cristo, fka Edmund Dantes says:

    @debbie:

    The emails with Giuliani should be a hoot.

  121. 121
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Le Comte de Monte Cristo, fka Edmund Dantes: Hey, I’m batting around the idea of going to Bonaire for a week. Which resort/dive operator would you recommend?

  122. 122
    opiejeanne says:

    Andrew Janz, a California attorney who prosecutes violent crimes, announced his campaign for Nunes’ seat last week. I don’t know anything about him

    And Adam Schiff says his office is getting obscene phone calls and death threats over the “release the memo” memo.

  123. 123
    Betty Cracker says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Okay, so if a president overruling legislation that was passed by a veto-proof majority of Congress so that he can appease a foreign autocrat and allow said autocrat to continue weakening and undermining the country isn’t a constitutional crisis, what is, pray tell?

  124. 124
    debbie says:

    Dow’s dropped 300 points this morning. Nice job, Donno.

  125. 125
  126. 126
    MomSense says:

    @Le Comte de Monte Cristo, fka Edmund Dantes:

    It’s alive and conspiring with some of the same players. Just checked out hashtag Q anon and who is at the top but good ‘ole J Corsi.

  127. 127
  128. 128
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @bystander: @opiejeanne: Thanks! Surprising number of “Democrats” who hate Democrats.

    I just got an email from Blue America, a group founded (in part) by Jane Hamsher and Glenn Greenwald for the purpose (in part) of stopping Rahm! Emmanuel. They’ve declared war against Blue Dogs (I guess this cycle we’re gonna stop Evan Bayh and Blanche Lincoln and a bunch of other people from the 2009-10 Congress). It caught my eye only because the subject line was “Joni Mitchell never set out to the best female songwriter”. I wondered if Joni had joined up with them, and was vaguely glad to hear that she’s well enough to do so (and a US citizen) but she wasn’t mentioned again in the email.

  129. 129
    randy khan says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    Lest we forget, something similar to Trump’s failure to implement the sanctions was one of the proposed articles of impeachment for Nixon – he refused to spend appropriated money (it was called “impoundment”) when he didn’t agree. The staff of the committee ultimately decided it was illegal, but not worthy of impeachment.

  130. 130
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @LAO: Heh, that was tasty.

  131. 131
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Le Comte de Monte Cristo, fka Edmund Dantes: I’m glad you’re not a terrorist. You’d be good at it. We should probably pause more often to appreciate the fact that terror organizations typically comprise fundamentalist loons (of every stripe), who aren’t noted for their competence.

  132. 132
    Lapassionara says:

    @Betty Cracker: my question also.

  133. 133
    The Simp in the Suit says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    Claire McCaskill

    @clairecmc
    Congress voted 517-5 to impose sanctions on Russia. The President decides to ignore that law. Folks that is a constitutional crisis. There should be outrage in every corner of this country.

    If only there was someone to lead on this issue…possibly a leader in an opposition party…

  134. 134
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Betty Cracker: Any number of things Betty.

  135. 135
    Steeplejack says:

    @Spanky:

    Your welcome.

    Snark or gaffe?

    Our institutions and institutional memory is are still strong in this country.

    Definitely gaffe.

  136. 136
    No Drought No More says:

    I’ve just read that Nancy Pelosi last night cited Nunes and the GOP as obstructing justice with their threat to compromise national security and release the memo. That’s fine, but only so far as it goes. At this point, neither she, or Schumer, or any other congressional democrat should hesitate to accuse all those who aid and abet Trump as likewise being traitors to this country.

  137. 137
    J R in WV says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch:

    W/o looking it up, I’m putting $50 on Senator Bernard Sanders (I) Vt. Am I close?!!

  138. 138
    MCA1 says:

    @Betty Cracker: Had Congress passed bipartisan legislation with 99% voting in favor, which instructed President Obama to begin more aggressively enforcing drug laws and put a thousand more DEA agents in the field, and Obama had not done a damned thing for a solid year thereafter, THEN we’d have a relatively analogous situation.

  139. 139
    NotMax says:

    @Betty Cracker

    That the announcement not to comply with the signed bill’s intent comes mere days after rubbing shoulders with said Russian honchos at Davos is not coincidence.

    Dolt 45, Tillerson, et al.: “Dropping trou, bending over and clutching one’s ankles is not collusion.”

  140. 140

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch: This was pointed out after the vote took place and BS bros on this forum muttered that it had something to do with Iran.

  141. 141
    MCA1 says:

    @MCA1: ETA, sorry Betty – should have kept reading further down the thread before responding exactly how you already had!

  142. 142
    The Moar You Know says:

    I read yesterday that the European “populists” are going in a different direction than Trump- they are beefing up the safety net and government programs.

    @Kay: Pre-election, Trump was quietly pimping himself as a student of Hitler, if you will; Mein Kampf on the bedside table, that sort of shit. He obviously wasn’t, because:

    Trump is the worst of both worlds. You get racist hard Right “social” policy with none of the perks.

    Nobody likes hard Right social policy, with the exception of a few psychopaths. Nobody. You have to mix it with VERY generous state benefits for people to sign onto that program. Which Hitler did, and his modern-day would-be proteges are trying to do. Of course, in America this instantly gets you thrown out of the “hard Right” club, as those politicians (lookin’ at you, Paul Ryan) live for killing the poor. Trumpism won’t work in Europe. I suspect, now stripped of any claims to intellectualism that it used to have before President Incoherent took over the movement, that it won’t work here long term.

    Of course, “long term” does mean long term, and the GOP can turn America into a smoking crater, a “shithole”, if you will, much faster than they can alienate all their racist supporters.

  143. 143
    J R in WV says:

    @Mary G:

    There’s a federal Grand Jury sitting right now looking into Jill’s management of her college, now bankrupt and closed, Burlington College. After she spent more than all their funds on an additional campus. $750,000 to her daughter for, well something, I forget. She did something and her mom paid her biggly. And the Senator smiled.

  144. 144
    Le Comte de Monte Cristo, fka Edmund Dantes says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    Buddy Dive, by a mile. Their dive operation is fantastic, breakfasts are decent, the bar is nice and uncrowded. They’ve also got a surprisingly high quality upscale restaurant on the property, in addition to a decent bar menu.

    Pricing is really good, too. The rooms are pretty straightforward, but I’ve never had a problem with housekeeping or function.

  145. 145
    Fair Economist says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch:

    It’s Wilmer.

    Voting against the Magnitsky Act is really weird because it targets bankers (money launderers) and people who commit torture/murder.

    That is – scary. I’d never thought Wilmer might be compromised personally but that does give me pause.

  146. 146
    tobie says:

    @J R in WV: The daughter was paid $750K for courses on woodworking at Burlington College. I kid you not. These people are grifters just like the Trumps. Remember the campaign trip to the Vatican that turned into a family holiday in Rome paid for by the campaign’s donors?

  147. 147
    MCA1 says:

    @Doug R: My rep. is also skipping it, having declared Dotard a “loathsome” human being and stressed that pretending this is all within some bounds of normalcy is not how to act. I already love my House representative, but this move dials up my support to 11 for life.

  148. 148
  149. 149
    Humdog says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: no you are wrong on this. With the Dreamers, Congress was not allocating sufficient funds to deport all undocumented so Obama, in following the law, prioritized who would get the limited funds spent in deportation. He did go further in creating a process for Dreamers to work legally while still undocumented. Here, Shitstain is refusing to do any of what the sanction law requires. Mulvaney at CFPB is completely changing the remit of his office, from consumer protection to reducing rules for predator companies. Very different.

  150. 150

    Shitty reporting on immigration from TPM

    Trump’s plan would result in 22 million fewer people immigrating legally to the U.S. over the next 50 years, with both citizens and permanent residents no longer able to sponsor their parents, grandparents, adult children, siblings, and other relatives. But Cornyn insisted Monday that the plan, by reallocating visas to address the current processing waitlist, is actually pro-family.

    Correction: First of all citizens can only petition for their spouses, children,parents and siblings under the current law. There is no provision to sponsor grandparents or other relatives. Other than parents, spouse and children under 21, all other categories are subject to strict annual quotas)
    GC holders cannot sponsor their parents. From the USCIS website.

    To petition for your parents (mother or father) to live in the United States as green card holders, you must be a U.S. citizen and at least 21 years old. Green card holders (permanent residents) may not petition to bring parents to live permanently in the United States.

    WTF Josh Marshall, that’s sloppy reporting and playing into the right wing narrative.

  151. 151
  152. 152
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    wow, wilmertroll links to “Dems are the real Russian colludiifers!” article when the subject of Mrs Wilmer’s cheap grifting and Wilmer’s useful idiocy comes up. I, for one, am going to take this valued commenter much more seriouser from heretofore henceforth.

  153. 153
    Humdog says:

    @No Drought No More: And my vote for Huffman in any primary or general election will cancel your whiny ass right out, idiot. “I didn’t get respect from some underling on the phone, hang the bastard!” Dillhole.

  154. 154
    Just One More Canuck says:

    @LAO: “Will anyone have the guts to finally reveal that Nancy Pelosi is enslaving teenage girls in an Illuminati mind-control temple under the Chrysler Building where George Soros presides over nightly human sacrifices and Hello Kitty cosplay?”

    Beautiful

  155. 155
    Spanky says:

    From the WaPo:

    The House Intelligence Committee voted Monday to release a memo detailing alleged surveillance abuses by the FBI and the Justice Department, escalating a political fight between conservatives and the nation’s intelligence agencies.

    The vote, which proceeded along party lines in the Republican-controlled committee, means that President Trump now has up to five days to review the material and decide whether to keep it secret, though he could agree to the release anytime before that deadline. If he does nothing, the committee can release the memo publicly.

    The Justice Department and the FBI are likely to lobby Trump in the interim, hopeful that he will prevent the memo’s classified contents from becoming public before lawyers for those agencies can review the material.

    The Intelligence Committee also voted along party lines Monday against releasing a rebuttal memo from the panel’s Democrats, who denounced both moves upon leaving the closed-door hearing.

    Nowhere in the article does it discuss what the Democrats plan to do with their rebuttal memo. Can someone tell me what prevents Schiff from simply handing it to the Post or other outlet that would not hesitate to publish it?

  156. 156
    LanceThruster says:

    What election theft really looks like.

  157. 157
    Spanky says:

    @Just One More Canuck: Wait, I thought that was Hillary under a pizza parlor. Were they competitors?

  158. 158
    But her emails!!! says:

    @Spanky:

    Nowhere in the article does it discuss what the Democrats plan to do with their rebuttal memo. Can someone tell me what prevents Schiff from simply handing it to the Post or other outlet that would not hesitate to publish it?

    Fear of jail time? Fear of the FBI raiding the offices of all the Democrats on the Intel Committee?

  159. 159
    The Moar You Know says:

    Can someone tell me what prevents Schiff from simply handing it to the Post or other outlet that would not hesitate to publish it?

    @Spanky: It’s classified. So, technically a crime. If you’re a Democrat, that is.

    Fear of the FBI raiding the offices of all the Democrats on the Intel Committee?

    @But her emails!!!: That’s the real threat. I think we all know the FBI would do it. So the Honorable Mr. Schiff has a lot to think about.

  160. 160
    J R in WV says:

    @glory b:

    @Jeffro: “This will end badly.”

    Well, we know that. The question is for who?

    Everyone? My best guess. I’m an old, so not that consequential for me, but I worry for the younger Americans.

  161. 161
    trollhattan says:

    @Baud:
    They’ll invoice him for the bullets/A2A missiles.

  162. 162
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    @No Drought No More:

    Russia Owns Trump (ROT), end of story. To presume otherwise at this point is to betray the country.

    Consider this; If Trump was really a Russian agent the Russians would simply sacrifice some pawns to keep it things going. Putin has had enough Russians killed all ready over this. so what’s a few sanctions? I think it’s really the Dotard in Chief is such a coward he isn’t willing to confront Russia about this and it’s driving him nuts his “most awesome, terrific, the best election victory ever” was sham and Trump is being outed as the empty suite he knows he is.

  163. 163
    opiejeanne says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: I’d say Joni achieved her non-goal since she isn’t the greatest female songwriter.

    I don’t understand what that comment has to do with anything let alone the subject they’re pushing.

  164. 164
    Kay says:

    @debbie:

    Undermining democratic institutions is exactly what Putin wants. Call it chaos or not, that in fact is his goal

    That’s not a goal. It’s a method. What he wants after “democratic institutions are undermined” is the goal.

  165. 165
    trollhattan says:

    @opiejeanne:
    He’s never had a serious challenge in that district and serial easy wins, so this could be interesting. Trump carried it in ’16 but Nunes’ margin of victory was much larger.

  166. 166
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @J R in WV: Isn’t that the daughter that is now running for Mayor of Burlington?

  167. 167
    Mike in DC says:

    @NotMax:
    he shall take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed

    From Article 2, Section 3 of the Constitution.

    “Shall” means “must” in legal parlance. The only defense would be to argue that the law intrudes on the president’s foreign policy purview unconstitutionally, but that argument wasn’t made.

  168. 168
  169. 169
    opiejeanne says:

    @LanceThruster: No rhubarb pie for me, more for you. I’ll take the apple or the pecan.

  170. 170
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Brachiator: This news makes me smile. I hope that “Black Panther” is one of the biggest box-office smashes ever and that the juicy popping sound of white supremacist wingnuts’ heads exploding is heard all over the land.

  171. 171
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Gin & Tonic: Yeah, what is this about Wilmer’s daughter running for mayor of Burlington, and why haven’t I heard any screeching about “no poitical dynasties!” from the same crowd that is constantly policing Chelsea Clinton? Oh, wait…

  172. 172

    @Kay: To reduce the clout of United States in the international arena.

  173. 173
    Miss Bianca says:

    @LAO: My God, the guy is a complete douchebag, but that is a John Cole-worthy rant.

  174. 174
    MCA1 says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: This needs to be a must read for everyone on our side of the aisle. I’ve forwarded it to numerous non-political junkies who are in the “Well, I mean, there must be something there. It’s not like several Congressman would be making these sorts of allegations baselessly” category. The penultimate paragraph, summing up just what exactly it is that Nunes is alleging, puts a nice bow on it all, with an unwritten but strongly implied conclusion of “and if you believe that, I’ve got a couple bridges for sale that I’d love to show you.”

  175. 175
    NotMax says:

    @Brachiator

    The first superhero movie to star a black lead character

    Not quite. That would probably be* Abar, the First Black Superman in 1977 (title changed to in Your Face for video release). So far as Marvel properties go, Blade, 1998.

    *Dependent on the nebulous definition of what constitutes a super-hero, one could conceivably consider Friday Foster from 1975 as a first.

  176. 176
    chopper says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    prosecutorial discretion is based on the idea that we don’t have the ability to kick out or lock up every drug user or every person here illegally or what have you. so we prioritize, and put weed users or dreamers at the bottom of the list.

    this is not that situation. this is a simple sanctions bill. and it specified that the president must implement these specific sanctions. it was not some broad sanctions bill that gave the president leeway in deciding what country to sanction and how.

    congress did not pass a bill by overwhelming margins that specifically ordered obama to deport the dreamers, nor did it provide the funding that would have allowed that. had that happened and obama refused, that would have indeed risen to the level of ‘constitutional crisis’.

  177. 177
    debbie says:

    @Kay:

    I don’t agree. He wants to destroy democracy and elevate himself to become and be seen as the preeminent leader in the world. Trolls are the method, undermining and destroying are twin goals.

  178. 178
    rikyrah says:

    Jon Favreau@jonfavs
    ICE refused a request from Congress to review this man’s case. They are out of fucking control.

    ICE Deports Palestinian Man Living In The U.S. For Almost 40 Years Despite Outcry
    The agency defied a request from the House Judiciary Commitee to review his case.

  179. 179
    Cacti says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    Yeah, what is this about Wilmer’s daughter running for mayor of Burlington, and why haven’t I heard any screeching about “no poitical dynasties!” from the same crowd that is constantly policing Chelsea Clinton? Oh, wait…

    It almost sounds the Wilmer sprog wants…(gasp)…a CORONATION!!!1!

  180. 180
    Spanky says:

    @But her emails!!!: @The Moar You Know: Well damn, it would have been helpful for the WaPo to have pointed that out. But the bulk of both articles was of course the definitely classified Republican memo.

    I hope that should the Republicans publish their definitely-classified version, Schiff delivers a (preferably sanitized) rebuttal.

  181. 181
    Kay says:

    @debbie:

    He wants to destroy democracy and elevate himself to become and be seen as the preeminent leader in the world.

    Okay, but then what does he DO? We have to tell people something. Democracy destroyed. He’s preeminent leader in the world. Then what happens?

    This is where the charge that we’re just yelling “Russia!” has some legitimacy. What? Take the natural resources, eradicate civil rights, control the assets? You have to tell people that or they won’t know. I don’t care what you tell them but you have to tell them something other than “Chaos! = ?????”

  182. 182
    tobie says:

    @rikyrah: Horrid. I’ve come to the conclusion that the two worst groups of people in the US are corrections officers and ICE agents. They’re is literally nothing stopping them from abusing human rights since the people they’re put in charge of have no rights. You lose your citizen’s protections as soon as you are incarcerated; and refugees belong to no state so they have no authority to appeal to for protection. Hannah Arendt wrote about the situation of stateless people in the buildup to WWII. We’re seeing it again.

  183. 183
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Cacti: Well, she is, technically, his step-daughter, so I’m sure this makes it all different.

  184. 184
    Spanky says:

    Always be grifting:

    Names of campaign donors to be flashed during live stream of Trump’s State of the Union speech

    Shit like this used to be comedic hyperbole. Sigh.

  185. 185
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @tobie:

    two worst groups of people in the US are corrections officers

    I may have mentioned this before, but years ago my wife worked in a health-care setting in a prison for a few years. She often said she trusted the inmates more than the guards.

  186. 186
    debbie says:

    @Kay:

    Then what happens?

    Shirtless, he sits back and basks in the glory he’s known he’s deserved all along.

    Or, power is its own end. He doesn’t need to have a plan for that.

  187. 187
    LanceThruster says:

    @opiejeanne:

    Oh my, such jocularity!

  188. 188
    Mnemosyne says:

    @opiejeanne:

    That’s why one should always triple-read any grammar correction comments. 😂

  189. 189
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Cacti: And hey (make sure you’re sitting when you read this), Burlington has an incumbent Democratic Mayor, who is running for re-election; Carina Driscoll is challenging him as an independent.

  190. 190
    Mnemosyne says:

    @LanceThruster:

    Da, comrade. How is the exchange rate to rubles today?

  191. 191
    tobie says:

    @Gin & Tonic: Hats off to your wife. She did yeoman’s work for a group no one else seems to care about.

  192. 192
    Betty Cracker says:

    @tobie: My brother is a corrections officer, and he’s a good guy. But it’s true there are many assholes in that job.

  193. 193
    Citizen Alan says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    If we had a functioning government during Iran-Contra, instead of corrupt Republicans, cowardly Democrats, and a supine media, that senile swine Ronald Reagan and his lap dog Vice President Bush senior would have both been impeached. It was indeed a constitutional crisis. The sad thing is that the crisis was resolved in favor of us having a monarchical president. Or at least having one whenever he was a Republican.

  194. 194
    opiejeanne says:

    @Mnemosyne: 1 Ruble = $.02

  195. 195
  196. 196
    LanceThruster says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Why would us Russian bots need to be paid? I’m just a few lines of code.

  197. 197
    opiejeanne says:

    @Mnemosyne: Thought you’d like to see the pie line I saw when his reply to you popped up:

    Give a man a pie, and he’ll be fed for a day. Turn a man into a pie, and he’ll be eaten for the rest of his very short life (with apologies to Terry Pratchett)

  198. 198
    LanceThruster says:

    @opiejeanne:

    Someone’s $.02 is still to be valued in this climate. I swear you could at least get some nuance here discussing Israeli apartheid, but woe be to anyone not in lockstep with Hillary fawning Russiagate juicers. This is a pretty sharp bunch and a good place to fine tune one’s arguments because people really do bring a lot of expertise to the table, but a lot of that critical thinking seems to go right out the window when the herd mentality kicks in.

    But then, who doesn’t love pie?

  199. 199
    LanceThruster says:

    For the record, it’s clear that pie observations mean you got nothing.

  200. 200
    Elie says:

    @Jeffro:

    I think that I am agreeing with you. They will have to fight — and WE are going to have to fight. We are in the middle of a coup. It is not just about protecting Trump, but making over the main policing agency and the Justice Department so that the Trumpites can do anything they want and come after their enemies. Its not just about protecting Trump from Mueller.. We have to wake up about this…

  201. 201
    Mnemosyne says:

    @LanceThruster:

    Assuming that the “you” in that sentence refers to yourself — that’s exactly what opiejeannie is saying to you, comrade.

  202. 202
    LanceThruster says:

    @opiejeanne:

    “Make a wholly loathesome and incompetent man your Pied Piper, and you’re *sure* to win! What could possibly go wrong?”

    ~ Hillary Clinton, future POTUS

  203. 203
    LanceThruster says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    You (Mnemosyne) keep telling yourself that. Handwaving is the result of having no cogent rebuttal.

  204. 204
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Kay:

    Okay, but then what does he DO?

    What did the US do when the Cold War ended and the Soviet Union broke up? Putin and his cohorts are still pretty pissed off about that and are seeking revenge, so it’s probably a good idea to find out what that looked like from the Russian end.

  205. 205
    jc says:

    Trump is like a cross between Milo Minderbinder (Catch 22) and Dr. Nick Rivera (The Simpsons). “What’s good for Trump Enterprises is good for the country.” “You tried the best, now try the rest.”

    The American government has become Trump’s syndicate. Selling off the crown jewels, while telling the simple-minded that these glass beads are just as good. Trump is *all* hustle and bamboozle, and the Republicans fell for it, hook, line and sinker.

    America has systems in place to protect our democracy, we have antibodies (Mueller) to attack the invading disease. So Trump’s gangsters go after the protection system to destroy its effectiveness. Team Trump works to override the protections, to de-value the rule of law, to undermine the justice system, to damage the election system, to swamp-ify the institutions of the country — while telling the gullible that it’s making the country great.

  206. 206
    Mnemosyne says:

    @LanceThruster:

    Who bothers to “rebut” Trump fluffers like yourself these days? You’re a clown, and we treat you as one.

  207. 207
    But her emails!!! says:

    @Kay:

    Kay, I always see this question from you and you never seem to accept any of the answers. I can’t help suspect that it’s because you can’t see outside of your own paradigm. People must be after money, power, etc. so they can do something with it, because otherwise, what’s the point? Sometimes more money and power is the end goal, not a means. Look at the Koch brothers. Between the two of them, they’re worth nearly $100 billion dollars. They have no need for additional money and they increased their wealth even with the regulations and tax rates that existed previously. They’re more than capable of shifting from their petroleum based chemicals and products businesses towards one based on renewables. They just wouldn’t make as much money that way. They want more money to forward their political agenda so they can make more money.

  208. 208
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @LanceThruster: Handwaving is the result of having no cogent rebuttal.

    No handwaving is only for when someone asks BERNIE! to explain how he’s going to get his magical bills passed! I think he has a copyright on hand waving.

  209. 209
    Mnemosyne says:

    @But her emails!!!:

    Sometimes more money and power is the end goal, not a means.

    This. People who aren’t motivated by money and/or power have a hard time understanding those who are. They think that the Kochs or Putins of the world must want to do something with that money and power when really they don’t have a master plan other than to accumulate as much as possible.

  210. 210
    Gravenstone says:

    @Betty Cracker: Gee, Congresswoman McCaskill, if only you had a position of power from which to do something about it. If only …

  211. 211
    But her emails!!! says:

    @Gravenstone: She doesn’t.

  212. 212
    Gravenstone says:

    @Gravenstone: Senator, lunkhead. Senator….

  213. 213
    Just One More Canuck says:

    @Mnemosyne: I kept thinking of the Koch’s as a couple of Scrooge McDucks come to life, then realized that they don’t have as much humanity as a miserly, but kindly cartoon duck

    Maybe Flintheart Glomgold? (yes, I went down a Wikipedia hole for that)

  214. 214
    LanceThruster says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Fuck off with your “Trump fluffers,” Mnemosyne. It must just eat away at you that the people who saw the train wreck Hillary’s campaign would be were right from the beginning. She positioned herself to run against one of the shittiest candidates in modern memory, so confident of her expected coronation she didn’t even bother to write a possible concession speech.

    Remind me how that turned out again, if you would please?

  215. 215
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @LanceThruster: if only we could know what would’ve happened if a sanctimonious, shouty old gadfly with zero achievements to show for his fifty years in public life hadn’t convinced a lot college students, simpletons and Susan Sarandon that WALL STREET SPEECHES! were the defining issue of our age

  216. 216
    LanceThruster says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Nothing wrong with aiming high even if it’s an ongoing quest. Bernie’s “free stuff” was to come from shifting spending priorities (current Dems gave tRump much more for “defense” spending than requested)…or maybe he was gonna make Mexico pay for it…I forget.

    Was certain “a progressive with results” would just waltz right into the Whitehouse with all the broad-based enthusiasm she was generating (lackluster campaign rallies notwithstanding). People struggling love to hear about incremental changes.

  217. 217
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Gravenstone: a Senator in the minority, from a trump-friendly state where she has at best a 50/50 chance at reelection. She’s pretty much done what she can if voters, especially her voters, aren’t moved by that argument.

  218. 218
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @LanceThruster: People struggling love to hear about incremental changes.

    almost as much as they love to hear about massive tax increases to send other people’s kids to college from a guy who was unemployed until he was 37 years old and got kicked out a commune for being a lazy-ass do-nothing

  219. 219
    LanceThruster says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    He supported her. It was her job to give them a reason. Turns out she didn’t have to because Sen. Schumer assured everyone to masses of moderate Republican voters she’d pick up in swing states. Nothing like telling voters they have no other options to bring them to the polls. Your wonder candidate depressed the turnout, sinking many down ballot races.

    These are the same masterminds insisting next time will be different.

    “Sure we suck, but the other guys are worse!,” is true if not monumentally compelling.

  220. 220
    LanceThruster says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    I think he must have been dodging sniper fire in Bosnia.

  221. 221
    Mnemosyne says:

    @LanceThruster:

    Remind me how that turned out again, if you would please?

    The Republicans cheated so that the popular vote winner would be shut out of the presidency. And you, Trump fluffer, were thrilled with that result.

    You’re perfectly happy that Trump “won” after 3 million more Americans voted against him because it fulfills your own sense of grievance as a white dude. White dudes proved that they’re still in control and can force the majority to do their bidding, and you can barely contain your glee.

  222. 222
    StringOnAStick says:

    @Betty Cracker: My late BIL was a corrections officer. There were a couple that he thought were good guys but the rest were lazy authoritarians who liked to dump all their work on the newest hires so they could surf the web all day; on e even made the new guys go get his dinner for him. My BIL was warned as a newbie that no one gets ratted out for this, otherwise a trip to the woods and being left behind naked and beaten was to be expected for snitches. He liked a lot of the inmates better though also related that a lot of them were sad losers who had made one too many mistakes in life and were never going to get out of that rut since they were now convicted felons.

  223. 223
    Betty Cracker says:

    @LanceThruster: What is the point of your “LOL Hillary sux LOL” visits to Balloon Juice, Lance?

  224. 224
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    Gotta earn those rubles. Toilet paper doesn’t buy itself.

  225. 225
    LanceThruster says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Then “pie me,” dumbfuck.

  226. 226
    LanceThruster says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    Betty – John used to be a conservative. He changed his views becsuse of the realities of the GOP. I want those criminals out like you wouldn’t believe, but it will not likely happen if corporate Dems are the lesser evil offered.

    I value the views of the commenters here, even when I disagree. There’s s lot of cheap shots here against Bernie, so one lone voice here shouldn’t twist your collective knickers so much. For better or worse, we’re team left…together. Better to work through disagreements now than at election time. I fear a repeat based on the way the factionalism is playing out.

  227. 227
    Mnemosyne says:

    @LanceThruster:

    Why? I enjoy having you as a punching bag. Pie me if you don’t like getting what you deserve.

  228. 228
    LanceThruster says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Seems as if the Dems would have been well advised to address the vote fraud/suppression issues before the general. I know Sanders supporters saw plenty of irregularities.

    It is typical that anyone with valid concerns over Hillary and Russiagate assertions are smeared as Trump fluffers and Russian bots. I’m for truth, no matter who is telling it.

    I’m all for this thing playing itself out regardless of whose corruption is exposed. I think Trump was most likely helping launder Russian mob money, but to claim Hillary lost because of Ruski social media is unsupported by facts.

    Wikileaks shone a light on DNC perfidy, yet that’s patently ignored.

  229. 229
    LanceThruster says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    I have no fear of your sophistry. I welcome opposing views, as it helps me revise my own when needed. Smug pie posts are wholly inconsequential in that regard.

  230. 230
    LanceThruster says:

    On other social media sites, I have to argue in the other direction…that Bernie wasn’t a pure enough progressive and his endorsing of HRC being proof of that. So I’ll have to admit that even I am having to deal with the “purity pony” charge. I feel in that regard, Bernie is a “lesser evil” that has the potential to bring about real change.

  231. 231
    Betty Cracker says:

    @LanceThruster: If there’s a repeat, it’ll be because of people like you. Had Sanders won the nomination, I’d have not only voted for the old coot, I would have knocked on doors and driven voters to the polls to help push his wrinkly old ass over the top. You’re damn sure not on my team.

  232. 232
    Mnemosyne says:

    @LanceThruster:

    I know Sanders supporters saw plenty of irregularities

    You mean like in Arizona, where they insisted that the Republican Secretary of State was trying to help Hillary and refused to listen to anyone who pointed out that the irregularities were aimed at suppressing all Democrats?

    Maybe if Sanders supporters could have focused on the actual enemy for 2 consecutive seconds, the results of 2016 would have been different.

    I’m for truth, no matter who is telling it.

    You’ve been told the truth repeatedly, but you refuse to believe it because it doesn’t conform to your preconceived notions about Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party.

    I think Trump was most likely helping launder Russian mob money, but to claim Hillary lost because of Ruski social media is unsupported by facts.

    Yes, I’m sure the reason that Twitter and Facebook are stonewalling all of the investigations is because there’s nothing there. Funny how you’re suspicious of corporations unless they validate your pre-existing beliefs.

    Wikileaks shone a light on DNC perfidy, yet that’s patently ignored.

    Yes, the DNC became impatient with Bernie after he lost the primary and refused to concede. What monsters! And their risotto recipe sucked, too.

    Meanwhile, Wikileaks and the Russians directly provided stolen Democratic opposition research to Republicans in House races — a fact that was reported on shortly after the election — and yet all you can think about is how DNC staffers were snarky behind your Personal Jesus’s back after he lost and not how those same stolen emails were used to help Republican defeat Democrats. Because it’s your fee-fees that matter, not actual facts.

    And, no, I’m not going to give you the link about the Russians giving stolen emails to House Republicans for the hundredth time. It was in the New York Times in late November or early December of 2016. Google it yourself, you lazy bastard.

  233. 233
    LanceThruster says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Mnemosyne – smug dipshit, and defender of the faith.

    Nothing like playing to the audience. I’ll be sure to let you know if any if your flailing roundhouse punches connect. xD

  234. 234
    LanceThruster says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Being cheated regardless of who was ultimately responsible is still an issue. Team Hillary probably didn’t need to purge the Brooklyn primary voter rolls to win, but there you are.

  235. 235
    Mnemosyne says:

    @LanceThruster:

    Being cheated regardless of who was ultimately responsible is still an issue.

    Apparently only when it comes to your personal Jesus. You don’t give a shit that we’re staring fascism in the face because you were okay with Hillary being cheated despite winning the popular vote.

    And I would love to see a link to a real newspaper’s story about Brooklyn voters allegedly being purged. Not a Facebook rumor, or a Medium blog, or a link to Russia Today, but an actual news story. You won’t find one, because — guess what? — it didn’t actually happen.

  236. 236
    Mnemosyne says:

    @LanceThruster:

    Oh, and if you try to claim it was HuffPo, that story was already proved to be fake, so try again.

  237. 237
  238. 238
    Vhh says:

    @James E Powell: yup. It took 25K dead GIs in Vietnam to set the stage for Watergate, and 4000 dead GIs + 2000 drowned in NOLA to bring in the Dems in 2006 and stop illegal torture as a policy, and then the Great Recession to flip the govt. Taking down or even limiting Trump and the GOP wrecking crew will take some combo of dead Americans on TV (1000 dead in PR not enough), economic downturn, or national humiliation.

  239. 239
    Vhh says:

    @James E Powell: yup. It took 25K dead GIs in Vietnam to set the stage for Watergate, and 4000 dead GIs + 2000 drowned in NOLA to bring in the Dems in 2006 and stop illegal torture as a policy, and then the Great Recession to flip the govt. Taking down or even limiting Trump and the GOP wrecking crew will take some combo of dead Americans on TV (1000 dead in PR not enough), economic downturn, or national humiliation. @Bobby Thomson:

  240. 240
    Mnemosyne says:

    @LanceThruster:

    Hey, look, it was a Republican who purged the voter rolls in Brooklyn.

    After all, we know that Republicans loved Hillary and wanted her to win. Or she was working with them, I can’t remember.

  241. 241
    LanceThruster says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    And yet Team Hillary let it slide as she was happy with the primary outcome, but recognized that vote suppression helped put Trump in the Whitehouse after she lost.

    https://www.wnyc.org/story/city-board-elections-admits-it-broke-law-accepts-reforms/

  242. 242
    LanceThruster says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    From your own link.

    Anonymous city elections officials said Haslett-Rudiano, who was in charge of the city’s Republican voter rolls, had been “scapegoated,” according to the New York Post. “It sounds like they cut a deal to make the Republican the scapegoat and protect Betty Ann,” an anonymous Democratic elected official from Brooklyn told the Post, referring to Betty Ann Canizio, who was in charge of the Democratic voter rolls.

  243. 243
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    an anonymous source told the New York Post….

    I guess it’s a step up from “Friends say Gwyneth is heartbroken and furious. “She’s crying her eyes out!”, said one of the star’s closest pals”

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