GOP Clown Car Open Thread: Kelly Is Out, But Nobody Wants In







144 replies
  1. 1
    Mary G says:

    Six-year-old triplets! His poor wife. She probably put her foot down.

  2. 2
    Mike in NC says:

    Just send Jared over to Lafayette Park to randomly stop passing pedestrians and ask if the job interests them.

  3. 3
    ThresherK says:

    After all the stuff we’ve seen of his journamalism, does Jake Tapper deserve a cookie?

    What is “replacement level WH correspondent” in this age?

  4. 4
    dmsilev says:

    Some options: Sean Hannity. Jared. A heavily made-up and under cover Robert Mueller. That twitter-bot of Microsoft’s that took only a few hours to go all neo-Nazi.

  5. 5
    Ruckus says:

    @ThresherK:

    What is “replacement level WH correspondent” in this age?

    Somebody with their own box of crayons and the ability to breathe on their own.

  6. 6

    Then there was one.
    How long will Gen. Theranos last?

  7. 7
    A Ghost To Most says:

    Stevie Slenderman! More like Pfennigwise, the nazi clown.

  8. 8
    patrick II says:

    Maybe Newt will sign up and we can send that sorry s.o.b. to prison too.

  9. 9
    Platonailedit says:

    I ber it is going to be the daughter spawn for cos xxx.

    Also. Too. What is magat habs bleating about interests?

  10. 10
    Corner Stone says:

    @Mike in NC:

    Just send Jared over to Lafayette Park to randomly stop passing pedestrians and ask if the job interests them.

    Have you ever heard Jared’s voice? Just having him ask me would be enough to get me to run the other way.

  11. 11
    dmsilev says:

    @JenniferJJacobs
    LATEST: Among those Trump is weighing for chief of staff, or has at least mentioned as a possibility, are acting AG Matt Whitaker, U.S. trade rep Bob Lighthizer, budget director Mick Mulvaney and Rep. Mark Meadows, I’m told.

    Treasury Sec Mnuchin not being considered at moment.
    2:25 PM – 9 Dec 2018

    My list sounds more plausible. Also, the phrase ‘rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic’ comes to mind for some odd reason.

  12. 12
    dmsilev says:

    @Platonailedit: I think she probably meant to type ‘running for office’ or similar.

  13. 13
    debbie says:

    @dmsilev:

    Whitaker AGAIN?

  14. 14
    Kay says:

    Robby Mook
    ‏Verified account
    @RobbyMook
    Follow Follow @RobbyMook
    More
    An important lesson from Trump-Russia revelations: we knew a lot of this more than two years ago, but chose not to believe it. Will we do it again next time?

    This doesn’t matter. really but I obsess on it. I feel like it’s worth exploring. Why no one in power “believed it”. I know some did, Clinton, for one, but why wasn’t it taken seriously? I mean, you don’t have to even go cloak and dagger- you can just say “the Trumps were involved in a hinky business deal”

    It just seems extraordinarily believable to me, that the Trump Family would enter into some sleazy deal involving real estate or licensing or whatever the fuck Trump Towers- Russia was. It’s so believable it’s almost “oh, of course they did”

    I feel like these are important questions. Who gets believed and who doesn’t.

    When I worked at the post office I got there early for my shift for the first couple of years. What I found that was because I did this the whole rest of the time I worked there people assumed I would always be on time or early, so even if I wasn’t people said “oh, she’s never late” I got some weird kind of reputational credit for being on time WAY past my early bird days. The Trumps are like the opposite of that dynamic. They have a HORRIBLE reputation. So what happened here? Why were people so reluctant to believe behavior that is perfectly consistent with their whole lives?

  15. 15
    Corner Stone says:

    @dmsilev: The choice is clear. Triumph the insult dog. That way he can always let someone know he’s only there so he can poop on them.

  16. 16
    Ruckus says:

    @Corner Stone:
    You could always just laugh at him.
    And flip him off.
    He deserves both.

  17. 17
    dmsilev says:

    @Corner Stone: And, at long last, when Trump accuses someone of being the puppet, it would be accurate.

  18. 18
    dmsilev says:

    @Mike in NC:

    Just send Jared over to Lafayette Park to randomly stop passing pedestrians and ask if the job interests them.

    Odds are that within the first five minutes, someone would beat him up and carve a scarlet T into his forehead.

    Ergo, this is definitely a strategy the administration should embrace.

  19. 19
    Ken says:

    @dmsilev:

    Some options: Sean Hannity

    I posted this in an earlier thread, but let me remind everyone:

    1) Cohen had only one client besided Trump, Sean Hannity
    2) The filings in the Cohen sentencing say that “Individual 1” committed felonies
    3) The filings totally clear Trump

    Therefore Sean Hannity is “Individual 1” and has committed felonies. It’s just logic.

  20. 20
    Corner Stone says:

    @Ruckus: And end up drugged in the back of his white panel van? No thank you.

  21. 21
    Corner Stone says:

    @Kay: I’m still pretty peeved at Robby Mook and don’t care to hear too much from him, IMO.

  22. 22
    Ruckus says:

    @Corner Stone:
    So you’ve been to Lafayette Park?
    Seriously, you don’t think that he’d drive a white panel van do you? He’s special, his is like his FIL would have, spray painted gold with several cans of paint from the local hardware store. Or at least black.

  23. 23
    Corner Stone says:

    God damn but I hate Steve Fucking Kornacki.

  24. 24
    dmsilev says:

    @Ken:

    Therefore Sean Hannity is “Individual 1” and has committed felonies. It’s just logic.

    Your logic is quite clear and convincing, but I’m still not sure why your conclusion that he’s a felon is disqualifying.

  25. 25
    Bobby Thomson says:

    Just how do you run for interest?

  26. 26
    Yarrow says:

    @Corner Stone: I can’t decide if I dislike Kornacki or Jacob Soboroff more.

  27. 27
    Corner Stone says:

    @Ruckus: Have you never seen any episodes of Law & Order? It has to be white with maybe some kind of stencil logo on it about plumbing or something. Jared’s the guy who has lost his puppy and needs help finding him. He has pics of the lost puppy in his van. Here, let him show you so you can help search and in the meantime enjoy this tasty lemonade.

  28. 28
    Kay says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Well, ok, I get that, but if you want to know what happened (and I do) he’s a good person to ask. We could ask Manafort I guess, Trump’s manager, but he’s indisposed at the moment. Mook knows a lot and he can tell it – people should know what happened in the US election in 2016. They have a right to know.

  29. 29
    Yarrow says:

    @Kay: It’s not wholly the fault of the media but there needs to be a reckoning for the media’s role in getting it so very wrong. They ignored their responsibility to inform and in many cases outright lied about what was happening. Many of them are compromised, making them easy to influence. Especially people at the top.

  30. 30
    JPL says:

    When Ayers was first announced it didn’t make sense to me because it’s an open secret in GA that he wants to become governor, senator, or something. I mentioned it a post earlier. Ayers is jumping ship. The other candidates mentioned joined with the devil and will go down with him.
    In honor of efg fuck em

  31. 31
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @Ken: 4) Individual 1 was elected President in 2016

    So that means… SEAN HANNITY IS SECRETLY PRESIDENT

  32. 32
    Corner Stone says:

    @Kay: The problem I have with all these political operatives like Mook and J Palmeiri, is that they still are looking for jobs ahead in the future. So none of them actually ever say the truth any longer. That one time where J Palm let fly at Kelly Ann Conway right after the election was about the best thing she’s ever done. Since then they have all pulled in their horns and are just bland blah blahs. I don’t have time for that.

  33. 33
    JPL says:

    @Yarrow: why not both? I have to stream MSNBC and when either appear, I shut it down.

  34. 34
    Ken says:

    @Corner Stone: “So, you’re about a size 14?”

  35. 35
    hells littlest angel says:

    Kelly Services and Manpower have also been contacted about the CoS job.

  36. 36
    Yarrow says:

    @Corner Stone: We’d all be better off if the blah blah blah stopped happening. Make cable news do news reporting. I don’t want to see what “both sides” operatives have to say. Even if Dem operative “owns” stupid R operative. It’s just dumb. The cable networks do almost nothing else but cover horse race politics.

    If they won’t do reporting, at least make the various panel guests wear NASCAR-like uniforms with their sponsors plastered all over it so we can see who’s paying them.

  37. 37
    JPL says:

    @Yarrow: That is so true. They were busy covering trump’s klan rallies and ignored Hillary’s because she spoke about policy. (boring) (ratings)

  38. 38
    different-church-lady says:

    …always had an interest in running for interest himself.

    Your feature reporter for The Newspaper Of Record, ladies and gentlemen.

  39. 39
    Yarrow says:

    @JPL: They’re just awful. Soboroff’s running around the country and sticking a camera in people’s faces asking them about voting prior to the midterm election was just beyond dumb. I wouldn’t talk to him. He’s like an overgrown kid hyped up on a sugar buzz.

  40. 40
    Ken says:

    @debbie:

    Whitaker AGAIN?

    I assume Trump is trying to do an end-run around as many Senate confirmation hearings as possible.

  41. 41
    Corner Stone says:

    @Ken: I’m not helping you load that sofa, Jared. I don’t care if you have a cast on or not.

  42. 42
    danielx says:

    @JPL:

    When Ayers was first announced it didn’t make sense to me because it’s an open secret in GA that he wants to become governor, senator, or something.

    It probably has not escaped his attention that going to work for Donald Trump in a high profile position is not exactly a career-enhancing move. Then there’s the off chance of spending some quality time at the Graybar Hotel…

  43. 43
    Ruckus says:

    @Corner Stone:
    Oh I get why you think it should be white but I’ll let you in on a couple of secrets.
    First, most of the cargo/panel vans are white. It’s the standard color. So that’s what color most of the used vans are. I know I’ve had two of them over the last 40 yrs, both bought second hand. You have no idea how many used white vans I’ve driven. A white van blends in.
    Second, you are somewhat normal so you’d expect the van to be white, because of your Law and Order experiences. Jared is in the family, second hand of course but still. Gold plaiting costs a fair bit so it’s either gold spray can paint or borrow a black van from the SS. (and that’s not the Secret Service)

  44. 44
    dmsilev says:

    @Ken: CoS isn’t a Senate-confirmed post.

    I think it’s more that the pool of even vaguely plausible people willing to work for Trump is getting ever shallower.

  45. 45
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Corner Stone: I think you’ve confused the still waiting for late adult onset puberty senior advisor to the President with the voted to most likely to be a serial killer by his peers at Santa Monica High School senior advisor to the President.

  46. 46
    different-church-lady says:

    @dmsilev:

    CoS isn’t a Senate-confirmed post.

    I really don’t understand why nobody’s brought David Duke in yet.

  47. 47
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Yarrow: Soborrof has done yeoman’s work covering the family separations at the border.

  48. 48
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Ken: The Chief of Staff’s position, in fact all the White House positions on the President’s and First Lady’s staffs do not require senatorial confirmation. These personnel are not constitutional officers, and, despite reporting that Steven Miller does it anyway, have no authority to issue instructions/orders to anyone in the government who do not work directly for them. Or Republican county sheriffs, who are among the people Miller has given orders to.

  49. 49
    Jeffro says:

    @dmsilev:

    Odds are that within the first five minutes, someone would beat him up and carve a scarlet T into his forehead.

    Shhh…don’t give away my plan…look, here comes Jared now…

  50. 50
    Ken says:

    @dmsilev: The pool of plausible people dried up some time ago. Since then he’s been hiring daytime TV stars. When Mnuchin goes, we may see Secretary of the Treasury Drew Carey.

    (Just kidding. Carey’s way too smart to hook up with this crowd.)

  51. 51
    Jeffro says:

    @Matt McIrvin:

    4) Individual 1 was elected President in 2016

    So that means… SEAN HANNITY IS SECRETLY PRESIDENT

    Scary but true: that would actually be a teeny, weeny upgrade from the current potus*

  52. 52
    JPL says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Steve Kornacki has done some pretty impressive stuff also. I still find him annoying to listen to .

  53. 53
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Corner Stone: @JPL: We’ve replaced Steve Kornacki’s regular coffee with Sanka, lets see if anyone notices…

  54. 54
    Suzanne says:

    @Mary G:

    Six-year-old triplets! His poor wife.

    This is, no lie, one of my nightmares.
    I love my children. But holy shit.
    I completely understand why my grandmother got hooked on the Mother’s Little Helpers of her era. (Why she stayed on them until her death in her mid-70s is another question.)

  55. 55
    Ken says:

    @Jeffro: Definitely saves time, since Trump’s just relaying what he sees on Fox News.

  56. 56
    Yarrow says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Yes, but I still can’t stand to watch or listen to him.

  57. 57
    Keith P. says:

    I bet Trump is really hating this one…Ayers was a rising star *and* he had GOP hair straight out of central casting. I immediately thought “Newt!” myself, but it could be anyone with a full head of hair, given that the next COS has to be the polar opposite of John Kelly (while still being white and male) Or maybe Ivanka.

  58. 58
    Ken says:

    @Adam L Silverman: @dmsilev: Sorry for the confusion. As a time-traveller from the year 2028, I’m used to Presidents operating under the terms of the “Stop Presidential Corruption (We’re Looking at You, Donald) Act” of 2022 which, um, formalizes many things that had been left to tradition and common sense.

  59. 59
    mad citizen says:

    @dmsilev: You made me think of the Microsoft Word assistant, “Microsoft Bob”, and a subsequent variant “Clippy”. Either could do this job. https://www.artsy.net/article/artsy-editorial-life-death-microsoft-clippy-paper-clip-loved-hate

  60. 60
    gene108 says:

    @Kay:

    I think The Simpsons encapsulated this with an episode featuring Frank Grimes, wherein Homer is living a good life – part of a Grammy Award winning barbershop quartet, meeting both Presdients Ford and Bush, Sr., and I believe taking a ride on the Space Shuttle – while living in a good size house, while Grimes is doing everything by the book and strugggling to get by. And everyone’s attitude toward Homer’s relative incompetence and ignorance is “thats just Homer being Homer”, what did you really expect.

    That’s the same attitude the MSM has towards Trump. What did you expect? Trump is just being Trump. The MSM is largely based out of NYC and have probably internalized the fact Trump is shady, and figured everyone out in rural OH, PA, etc. knew what they did about Trump.

    It is a preposterous amount of arrogance on the MSM’s part that fueled their election coverage.

  61. 61
    cain says:

    I suggested Tucker Carlson and Sean Hannity. Mostly getting them out of the airwaves and forced to hold the leaking titanic is the best outcome. Hell, maybe Fox and Friends can do it too. It’ll open their eyes.

  62. 62
    Jeffro says:

    (picturing the day where Trumpov goes berserk and starts Twitter-pardoning everyone involved, himself included)

    What then, GOP? Would those just be “process crimes” of obstruction, bribery, etc? It’d be ok if a Dem was doing it, right?

  63. 63
    Jeffro says:

    @cain:

    I suggested Tucker Carlson and Sean Hannity. Mostly getting them out of the airwaves and forced to hold the leaking titanic is the best outcome. Hell, maybe Fox and Friends can do it too. It’ll open their eyes.

    I’d just like them all in the same building when the peasants come for them with torches and pitchf…oh, who am I kidding? This is America: look forward, not back.

  64. 64
    different-church-lady says:

    @Jeffro: The day Trump goes berserk is the day he tries to imprison Hillary via Twitter.

  65. 65
    gene108 says:

    @cain:

    Ainsley Earhardt for next COS or GTFO…

  66. 66
    Kay says:

    @Yarrow:

    Right, because it’s not unimaginable that there could have been Russian interference. It’s not like “space aliens” or “white vans full of illegal black voters”.

    I read Comey’s testimony this morning (not all the questions- I skip the GOP questions to save time) but all of his answers and this was a big deal! Law enforcement were pursuing the Russian angle openly by late winter/early spring of 2016. A LOT of people knew. But all we got was “welll, there’s some posts on Facebook” or whatever. It wasn’t taken seriously.

    These kind of mass delusions interest me- my sense is it was :”uncool” to take it seriously- that the savvy insiders dismissed it.

  67. 67
    Corner Stone says:

    @Keith P.:

    Ayers was a rising star

    As has been documented on twitter by I think Atrios, but could be wrong, there are zero Republican figures that are *not* rising stars. You can’t find one mentioned in the papers without the descriptive “rising star”. It doesn’t matter who they are, what role they play, their age, nothing. Every single Republican operative/official is a “rising star”.

  68. 68
    Ohio Mom says:

    @Suzanne: One of your parents is a triplet?

    I never stopped to consider it but yes, three at a time would have done me in.

  69. 69
    Adam L Silverman says:

    Ooopsie!

  70. 70
    Kay says:

    @gene108:

    The MSM is largely based out of NYC and have probably internalized the fact Trump is shady, and figured everyone out in rural OH, PA, etc. knew what they did about Trump.

    Maybe. That would explain how they over-corrected after the election and spent a year interviewing Trump voters- that would explain their brief and insincere foray into white rural problems. Compensatory.

  71. 71
    mad citizen says:

    @Corner Stone: I had one of the networks nightly news on Friday night and Ayers was called a “whiz kid”. It drives me nuts, the ‘rising star” bull shitz.

  72. 72
    hueyplong says:

    For COS, I note that G Popolopodus is out of prison, and Roger Stone isn’t in yet. So both are available.

    Or he could hire one of the three idiots from Fox & Friends.

  73. 73
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @gene108: They’d have to find a new blonde to go with the two boobs on the morning show.

  74. 74
    mad citizen says:

    @gene108: Good post. It’s been a long time, but is this the same as the “pulling a Homer” episode?

  75. 75
    Jeffro says:

    @Kay:

    It wasn’t taken seriously.

    These kind of mass delusions interest me- my sense is it was :”uncool” to take it seriously- that the savvy insiders dismissed it.

    That, and I still think that many, many of us just could not picture a majority…or a plurality…or a Russian-assisted plurality…or a Russian-and-US-media-assisted plurality of voters electing Donald Fucking Trump. Like somehow it was magically not possible no matter what we did, or didn’t do (like, turn out to vote) or what letters we dropped on Congress at the last minute to kneecap Hillary or what Facebook craziness we saw but took no action on.

    It just didn’t seem possible. And yet, here we are, in this just about worst of all timelines. Obama put it kind of clumsily (well, he wasn’t specifically talking about the nightmare to come) but he did say something like “when the choices on the menu are steak and fish, that’s it: you don’t get to vote for pasta” – something like that. He was trying to reign in the Jill Stein idiots and get them to realize what was at stake.

    Maybe Hillary put it best, just before the election: if she didn’t win, for the country, it would be “the apocalypse”. Judging by who Trumpov picked for each cabinet agency, and how well he’s done at sabotaging everything (trade deals, Paris, tariffs, NATO alliance, etc), she was as usual exactly on point.

  76. 76
    Adam L Silverman says:

    Lookee! Lookee!

    Also from that same interview:

  77. 77
    NotMax says:

    Chief of staff Pecker has a certain catawampus ring to it. //

  78. 78
    delk says:

    He can still have an Ayers, Bill Ayers!

  79. 79
    poleaxedbyboatwork says:

    My nominations:

    Baghdad Bob for the next Chief of Staff.

    Or the Martin Short pathological lawyer liar character.

    If only the untethered fabulism of the former could be melded with the hysterical paranoia of the latter, it’d be gooper spirit made flesh.

  80. 80
    gene108 says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    I think they go with a redhead, just to shock their audience

    @mad citizen:

    I don’t remember the “pulling a Homer” from that episode, but it is possible. Thanks for the compliment

  81. 81
    Adam L Silverman says:

    Here’s the interview:

  82. 82
    Platonailedit says:

    @NotMax: As does Ivanka.

  83. 83
    Mary G says:

    @Suzanne: I kid you not, one of my insanely Catholic cousins was a novice in a convent when she decided that wasn’t for her, ran away and got married. In the next six years she had eight children – three sets of twins and two singles spaced about 10 months apart. At one point six were in diapers at the same time.

    She was like 28 years old, and told her priest she was going on birth control. He said he thought she had done her duty to God. The rest of the family disagreed and she was banned along with my father and one of his brothers. I never met her, but I always wonder if she stayed sane.

  84. 84
    lgerard says:

    The simplest solution is for someone to get trump an Amazon Echo and tell him Alexa is the new Chief of Staff

  85. 85
    low-tech cyclist says:

    @Mike in NC:

    Just send Jared over to Lafayette Park to randomly stop passing pedestrians and ask if the job interests them.

    Better: have the DEA set up a drug deal in Lafayette Park with some poor schmuck from SE who barely knows where the White House is, and when they bust him, they give him a choice of prison or being Trump’s Chief of Staff.

    They might have to run this deal several times before they find a guy who doesn’t prefer prison…

  86. 86
    MagdaInBlack says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    Oh! My!
    This could get interesting. ☺️

  87. 87
    NotMax says:

    @Platonailedit

    Nah, she’d never take on a position which involved regular hours and, y’know, actual work.

  88. 88
    Platonailedit says:

    Ayers is heavily implicated in the Eric Greitens shitstorm of scandals and possibly in the Josh Hawley scandal (which may shed more light on the Greitens scandals) so…yeah— Sarah Kendzior (@sarahkendzior) December 9, 2018

  89. 89
    gene108 says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    McConnell sure as fuck isn’t ashamed of covering up Russian interference. He has his dream job. He’s able to stack the courts with right-wing justices, stole a SCOTUS seat to see it filled with a right-wing partisan hack, and pass massive tax cuts he and his wife a personally benefitting from, as well as his corporate masters.

    Ryan also doesn’t have a reason to care. He’s still relatively young. Got a sweet gig at a young age, as House Speaker, and can now spend the rest of his life making money on the wing nut welfare circuit.

  90. 90
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Mary G:

    The rest of the family disagreed and she was banned along with my father and one of his brothers.

    That’s a strict family if they’d ban your father and one of your uncles because one of your cousins went on birth control. You’d think they’d at least have banned the priest that gave his approval.

  91. 91
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @MagdaInBlack: Yep. I’ve written several times here that Comey testified in Congress right before he was fired that he’d opened such an investigation. My semi informed take of how these things works is that it likely got rolled into the Special Counsel’s investigation. But we will eventually find out.

  92. 92
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @Mary G:
    Religion ruins everything.

  93. 93
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Platonailedit: Yes, yes he is. And the last name of the guy investigating Hawley is Ashcroft. And I’m pretty sure he thinks Senator Ashcroft sounds nicer than Missouri Secretary of State Ashcroft.

  94. 94
    Mike in NC says:

    The producers of “Criminal Minds” must kick themselves for not being able to cast Stephen Miller as a recurring character years ago.

  95. 95
    Mary G says:

    @Adam L Silverman: So do you think Putin is behind some of the yellow vests? They seem to be popping up all over Europe.

  96. 96
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @gene108: I don’t think that’s quite what Comey meant by referring to their everlasting shame.

  97. 97
    Mary G says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Priests are ordained by God, doncha know. Except when they run away and get married. My dad was one of six kids and the uncle was expelled for being an alcoholic who admitted it after going to AA, and the nun was disinherited because of her vow of poverty. The other three had hordes of children, so there were still plenty of family members to hang together bitching about the excluded ones.

  98. 98
    Tenar Arha says:

    This doesn’t matter. really but I obsess on it. I feel like it’s worth exploring. Why no one in power “believed it”. I know some did, Clinton, for one, but why wasn’t it taken seriously? I mean, you don’t have to even go cloak and dagger- you can just say “the Trumps were involved in a hinky business deal”

    I’ve thought about it a lot. It’s like Cassandra’s curse. Which makes me think it really was some combination of the MSM being wired for status quo opinions (i.e. the GOP & corporations). But also it was their fundamental misogyny, because IIRC many of the people who were making the warnings that that walking 🍊 turdblossom could win, & that he was obviously cheating, were women.

    ETA Oops I forgot to use the reply for this @Kay:

  99. 99
  100. 100
    Cckids says:

    Is there a website somewhere that collects & shares DT’s moronic past tweets? Doling them out at appropriate times? If not, by God there should be.

  101. 101
    p.a. says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    “To their everlasting shame…

    Comey-pot to RepubLeaders-kettles: “U R black”

    CoS: Dana Loesch. Available.

  102. 102
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Mary G: Yes he is. The original protest was organic to France. Macron has pushed through a number of what are considered long overdue reforms in France since taking office. The gasoline taxes as a forcing function to move to alternative forms of energy is one of them. What is often missed in discussions of France and protests in France is that there is really large amounts of people in France on subsistence income. So they get their healthcare taken care of and education and there’s a significant safety net, but at least a plurality if not a majority of the French don’t have any real, let alone significant, disposable income. And the majority of these folks live outside of Paris. So there’s a lot of focus on Paris and Parisians and what appears to be the abundant wealth in Paris and not so much coverage of everyone living the French equivalent of paycheck to paycheck. So these reforms have been very painful, even if they were necessary. And I don’t know enough to say whether they were or were not necessary. And the original, organic to France protests in response to the gas tax, really did not have a well defined leadership, organization, or even list of demands.

    Now on top of these organic protests against the gasoline tax emerging from the context I’ve described above has been layered a series of active measures to both exaggerate the scope of what is going on, why it’s going on, etc. You’ve had some of the leadership of the little green men from Crimea and eastern Ukraine make appearance. You’ve got pro-fascist and Putin aligned politicians from Italy making an appearance. You’ve got Dugin tweeting up a storm. You’ve got a clearly coordinated social media push to elevate, amplify, and hijack the yellow vest protests. That has been, and will continue to be documented.

  103. 103
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Mary G: I’m tracking.

  104. 104
    debbie says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    The height difference is . . . striking.

  105. 105
    trollhattan says:

    Remember HW’s prop bag o’ crack? Whoever they busted with it, that guy.

  106. 106
    poleaxedbyboatwork says:

    @Jeffro:

    and I still think that many, many of us just could not picture a majority…or a plurality…or a Russian-assisted plurality…or a Russian-and-US-media-assisted plurality of voters electing Donald Fucking Trump. Like somehow it was magically not possible no matter what we did, or didn’t do (like, turn out to vote) or what letters we dropped on Congress at the last minute to kneecap Hillary or what Facebook craziness we saw but took no action on.

    All valid points, but for me, despite alla Russian intervention and the hysterical and lop-sided press coverage, Clinton hadda durable 4 to 7 point lead over Trump for the entire time they’s heads-up. And then … the sanctimonious prick Jim Comey stuck his oar in the water. Against alla the DoJ guidelines and certainly contra alla his saccharine posturing of moral rectitude. (And after publicly browbeating Clinton previously in July.)

    Without mentioning, you know, the Siberian Candidate’s campaign was under active investigation and might well be in cahoots with the Ruskis. (Seemed like an egregious transgression on the hand and an unforgivable omission on t’other.) And why mention the reopening of the bullshit “investigation” at all? B/c he assumed, as did most, that Clinton was gonna win.

    Will try a coupla links:

    538

    KDrum

    Comey, for alla his Hamlety maundering, simply got played. Working the refs worked.

    Sidenote: June of ’16, I was bringing my vessel north to Sitka from SF Bay. Met the guy who was accompanying me north at the airport, first thing he wants to talk about was Hillary’s emails. N how the “email scandal” was going to prevent her from getting the nomination n how she was most like to go to prison. Now, I ain’t completely uninformed about the ways n inclinations of wingers (am from Alaska after all!). But that moment clued me into the hermetically sealed, seemingly impenetrable nature of the gooper bubble.

    It galls me that Comey gets to play the role of the noble martyr. He, more’n anything else, gave Trump his “victory”.

    imo, ymmv

  107. 107
    Yarrow says:

    @Jeffro: Hillary was Cassandra. It’s shocking to go back and look at what she said during the 2016. The media ignored it at best and often ridiculed her.

    But honestly, how could anyone think it couldn’t happen here? Brexit had just happened. The British were warning us it could happen here too. We ignored them. Brexit was also a Russian op, of course.

  108. 108
    RAVEN says:

    @poleaxedbyboatwork: We had a great time in 10,000 Islands!

  109. 109
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @debbie: And I think there are at least two inch heels on her boots! So she’s a hobbit.

    ETA: Comey’s 6’8 if I’m recalling correctly. So based on the comparison of the two in proximity, she can’t be much more than 5’1 or 5’2.

  110. 110
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷 says:

    @Yarrow:

    We ignored them. Brexit was also a Russian op, of course.

    Maybe I’ve said this before, but what really pisses me off is that nobody seems to be seriously fucking with Russia as payback.

    I want to see their society and political system disrupted and see how they like it. And by “they” I mean the oligarchs and Putin who call the shots their.

  111. 111
    Adam L Silverman says:

    And that, as they say, is that!

  112. 112
    chris says:

    @Cckids: If you must: http://www.trumptwitterarchive.com/

    Better, I suppose, than clicking the actual twitter feed. So there’s that.

  113. 113
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷 says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    Is it Mulvaney or Mnuchin who hold two government positions at the same time already? How’s that legal?

    And the organizational collapse of the Excecutive Office of the President seems to be finally happening.

  114. 114
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷: Mulvaney. He’s the Director of the Office of Management and Budget and the Acting Director of the Consumer and Financial Protection Bureau. It’s legal because of the Vacancy Act.

  115. 115
    Yarrow says:

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷: Things are happening. The sanctions are having some effect. Their guy didn’t get to run Interpol. Some things are happening that don’t get much, if any, press here. More will come so don’t lose heart.

  116. 116
    jl says:

    Trump has no plans to humiliate Kelly. First, he already has by conventional standards, and two, Trump has no plans period.
    As for Ayers, he is young, he has a family, not in the mood for getting anywhere near Trump level legal trouble.
    And, probably being Pence’s chief of staff, he has seen Mother around Mr. Pence, giving him that icy ‘Well, you got what you wanted (you dolt), hope you enjoy it” look

  117. 117
    Platonailedit says:

    @Adam L Silverman: ss sinking ship.

  118. 118
    chopper says:

    @gene108:

    “i live in a single room above a bowling alley, and below another bowling alley!”

  119. 119
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Kay:

    Robby Mook

    This is awfully petty of me, but you remember that old song “Alley-Oop”?

    (Link)

    I keep singing (in my head) “Robby Mook (Mook), Mook (Mook), Mook (Mook-Mook).”

  120. 120
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷 says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    It would be hilarious if Mulvaney served in all three positions.
    @Yarrow:

    I hope so.

  121. 121
    Mnemosyne says:

    At this point, I kind of hope Trump appoints one of his totally unqualified children as CoS because it will cause the administration to collapse that much sooner.

  122. 122

    @gene108: There is a much simpler explanation, MSM presidential election coverage is always R friendly. Think Bush vs Gore, Bush vs Kerry. McCain vs. Obama, Romney vs. Obama or HRC vs T.

  123. 123
    Chris Johnson says:

    @Kay:

    Right, because it’s not unimaginable that there could have been Russian interference. It’s not like “space aliens” or “white vans full of illegal black voters”.

    I read Comey’s testimony this morning (not all the questions- I skip the GOP questions to save time) but all of his answers and this was a big deal! Law enforcement were pursuing the Russian angle openly by late winter/early spring of 2016. A LOT of people knew. But all we got was “welll, there’s some posts on Facebook” or whatever. It wasn’t taken seriously.

    These kind of mass delusions interest me- my sense is it was :”uncool” to take it seriously- that the savvy insiders dismissed it.

    From what I see, Jaron Lanier of all people absolutely nailed it. He talks about ‘BUMMER’ networks, and names a sheaf of social media sites, and remarked offhand that these are all heavily targeted by Russian hackers. Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, 4chan, Reddit etc…

    It’s true. Once you see it, it’s obvious. These places are CARPETED by people posting not to take the interference seriously, from every possible angle. I’ve been taking great interest in how totally the dirtbag left havens on Reddit are suppressing any sort of information about Russian interference. There’s coordinated teams and I can get downvoted into oblivion super easy just by making the right/wrong sort of arguments. Anywhere that can be manipulated through social interaction is completely swarmed by manipulation.

    Places like this blog can’t be manipulated that way, but we get handy posters making arguments and bringing up distractions. Fuckin’ oldgold, perhaps, with the obsessive interest in making Mueller do something hasty. There are a LOT of people meta-gaming all this. And part of the argument is, oh, it’s just some posts on facebook. You probably can’t do anything anyway. No justice will be done. Look, Bernie Sanders said a thing!

    You can’t go by what the consensus seems to be, especially on the big socialmedia sites. There’s a LOT of manipulation out there… and in here. No matter what’s happening, there are (moderately) paid people who are there to twist things in directions useful to Putin. It’s not rocket science.

  124. 124
    Ruckus says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    I’d bet there is some 21 yr old unemployed nazi wanna be that would accept the job. A younger Kelly? Individual 1 just has to keep scraping the bottom of the barrel, til it coughs up, something.

  125. 125
    Suzanne says:

    @Ohio Mom: No, my mom and her siblings aren’t triplets, but there are three of them and they are close in age. And the descriptions of childhood involve their mother locking them out of the house on more than one occasion, and mom “going away for a few days” multiple times. They only found out later that she was at a psych ward.

    Triplets sounds like full-on insanity. One is hard enough.

  126. 126
    poleaxedbyboatwork says:

    @RAVEN:

    Excellent! Hadda buddy stop by to The Office (i.e. PBar) and we’re playing scrabble. Will inquire further later if OK?

  127. 127
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @Chris Johnson: Remember that period when Bob from Portland eventually turned every single comment thread on this blog into an argument about Crimea and Malaysian Airlines Flight 17? I doubt the Russian government was actually paying him, but he was clearly eyeballs-deep committed to believing Russian propaganda, and he pushed it any way he could, using arguments intended to be appealing to left-political-blog folks (particularly “Bush lied about Iraq, therefore everything the US says about Russia is a lie”). That was before Trump was even considered a serious candidate.

  128. 128
    Aleta says:

    Who does Ivanka want for Chief?

    Ken Kurson would be perfect. He worked for years for Giuliani, made Kushner’s Observer an outlet for Wikileaks and Guccifer 2.0, and he’s already failed his FBI background check because of sexual harassment.

  129. 129
    different-church-lady says:

    @Chris Johnson:

    Places like this blog can’t be manipulated that way…

    But lord knows there was a guy in “Portland” who tried.

  130. 130
    different-church-lady says:

    @Chris Johnson: The media aided this by their use of social media metrics as a shortcut for what they ought to be covering. The bots and trolls didn’t necessarily have to convince individuals; they merely had to get something to “trend” and the MSM would chase it blindly.

  131. 131
    catclub says:

    @debbie: I think Trump suffers heavily from the availability fallacy. Whoever he has seen recently is the most likely choice.

  132. 132
    Aleta says:

    Parts of Harry Reid’s letter to Comey before the 2016 election:

    August 27, 2016
    Dear Director Comey:

    I have recently become concerned that the threat of the Russian government tampering in our presidential election is more extensive than widely known and may include the intent to falsify official election results. The evidence of a direct connection between the Russian government and Donald Trump’s presidential campaign continues to mount and has led Michael Morrell, the former Acting Central Intelligence Director, to call Trump an unwitting agent of Russia and the Kremlin.

    The prospect of a hostile government actively seeking to undermine our free and fair elections represents one of the gravest threats to our democracy since the Cold War and it is critical for the Federal Bureau of Investigation to use every resource available to investigate this matter thoroughly and in a timely fashion. The American people deserve to have a full understanding of the facts from a completed investigation before they vote this November.

    As you know, Russia’s intent to influence the outcome of our presidential election has been well-documented by numerous news organizations. For example, it has been reported that your agency is currently investigating the cyber theft of thousands of documents from several Democratic organizations …. Already, a consensus
    of national security experts publicly concluded that actors of the Russian government carried out these cyber attacks.

    For example, it has come to my attention that last week, video evidence came to light of an individual with long ties to Donald Trump and his top campaign aides claiming to be in communication with WikiLeaks, the organization that posted online the 20,000 DNC documents illegally obtained by Russia.

    https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/3035844-Reid-Letter-to-Comey.html

    (From someone’s (germy’s?) link earlier today, I saw that Sarah Kenzidor had linked to this letter in Nov. 2016. )

  133. 133
    different-church-lady says:

    @Chris Johnson: Thanks for aiming me towards that article. One thing jumped out immediately:

    Why does the nastiness happen? In brief: ordinary people are brought together in a setting in which the main – or often the only – reward that’s available is attention.

    I guess I’m very different when it comes to my on-line behaviors: I do not seek attention. I do see to be informed, and I crave interaction, but not attention per se. It’s not about me, it’s about the interplay.

    I think that’s what makes BJ different than a lot of other places. Obviously nobody comes here to be a star, or even the biggest star in a tiny constellation. Instead we make these weird little semi-anonymous, virtual friendships.

    This is probably why I’m so addicted to BJ but eschew almost all other forms of social media.

  134. 134
    Another Scott says:

    @Ruckus: Maybe Scott Walker? He’s gotta be looking for a job.

    About the only thing on his plate is vetoing a few bills from the lame-duck legislature, as I’m sure he’ll do. Right? Right?!!?

    Scott’s history of punching hippies and punching down would make him a perfect fit in Donnie’s House of Horrors.

    :-/

    Cheers,
    Scott.
    (Not that I expect it to happen, but it would be interesting…)

  135. 135

    @different-church-lady: I hate to defend MAGA Haberman, but if you’re posting from a phone, it’s fairly easy to make a typo like that without noticing. Phone keyboards and dictation software are stupid.

    @Jeffro: At the risk of pointing out the obvious, it was not in fact a plurality of voters that “elected” Individual-1. Clinton received the plurality, by 2.86 million votes. Individual-1 was appointed by the Electoral College. Of course, the fact that Clinton didn’t receive a majority of, IDK, let’s say 73% is still proof of a deep sickness in this country.

  136. 136
    different-church-lady says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))):

    Phone keyboards and dictation software are stupid.

    Which is why they shouldn’t be used for journalism.

    I think you can guess where I’m going with this.

  137. 137
    No One of Consequence says:

    Image (Trump yelling at kind mowing the White House lawn)

    Caption: “Hey kid, you wanna be Chief of Staff?”

    Anyone post that yet?

    – NOoC

  138. 138
    frosty says:

    @different-church-lady:

    I do see to be informed, and I crave interaction, but not attention per se.

    WELL OCCASIONALLY MY CAPS LOCK GETS STUCK!!!!!!

    I kid, I kid. (You were the one doing this amirite? It was hilarious)

  139. 139
    different-church-lady says:

    @frosty: WHAT COULD BE MORE INTERACTIVE THAN SCREAMING AT PEOPLE?!??

  140. 140
    frosty says:

    @different-church-lady: Still hilarious!!

  141. 141
    Barb 2 says:

    Sarah Palin for chief of staff!

    That’ll be hitting a ton of birds with one stone. Family, dorky son, dorky daughter or two. She’s already kissed his behind. (Hint – This is a big bad joke for folks with no sense of humor.)

  142. 142
    trnc says:

    @Ken:

    1) Cohen had only one client besided Trump, Sean Hannity

    According to the court filing linked here, he had 10 clients after he started his solo practice in January, 2017. The three clients of interest for the filing were Trump, Elliot Broidy and an unidentified one (who turned out to be Hannity). The other seven were of no interest to the prosecutors.
    https://www.businessinsider.com/trump-lawyer-michael-cohen-represented-3-people-past-year-2018-4

  143. 143
    trnc says:

    @Ken:

    “Stop Presidential Corruption (We’re Looking at You, Donald) Act” of 2022 which, um, formalizes many things that had been left to tradition and common sense.

    This may be the republican play that chaps my ass the most. They yell and scream about any rule or regulation so that they can turn around later and say, “Well, there’s no law against it.” Conservatives claimed to be the party of tradition, and now they curb stomp every tradition and norm that gets in their way. So now, we have to legislate and codify every little thing, which takes time and would turn the public off at some point; or watch the next republican rinse and repeat.

  144. 144
    Shalimar says:

    At this point, it’s basically pick which career you want to see destroyed. I would be happy with getting Whitaker out of the AG seat, but getting Meadows out of Congress would have the best long-term benefit for the country.

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