Saturday Morning Open Thread: Cartoon Villains

(Mike Luckovich via

(Signe Wilkinson via

(Non Sequitur via

(Drew Sheneman via

Late Night Open Thread: Nice “Work” If You Can Get It…

Jon Chait, NYMag, “Why Are Republican Small Donors So Easy to Swindle?”:

Republicans have long complained, usually in private, that their fundraising apparatus is overrun with fraudsters. National Review’s Jim Geraghty has a column, “The Right’s Grifter Problem,” saying what many of them have been whispering. Many of President Trump’s most publicly strident loyalists are in the business of raising money for political projects that spend virtually all their funds on operating expenses…

Grifters go where the marks are:

A former pro football player who serves on the National Rifle Association board was paid $400,000 by the group in recent years for public outreach and firearms training. Another board member, a writer in New Mexico, collected more than $28,000 for articles in NRA publications. Yet another board member sold ammunition from his private company to the NRA for an undisclosed sum.

The NRA, which has been rocked by allegations of exorbitant spending by top executives, also directed money in recent years that went to board members — the very people tasked with overseeing the organization’s finances.

In all, 18 members of the NRA’s 76-member board, who are not paid as directors, collected money from the group during the past three years, according to tax filings, state charitable reports and NRA correspondence reviewed by The Washington Post.

The payments received by about one-quarter of board members, the extent of which has not previously been reported, deepen questions about the rigor of the board’s oversight as it steered the country’s largest and most powerful gun rights group, according to tax experts and some longtime members…

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Cold Grey Pre-Dawn Open Thread: Ignorants Abroad

The good news, so far: Nobody threw punches, or milkshakes. And the (Inter)National Embarrassment my have nodded off during the big dinner, but at least he didn’t faceplant into his food. From the Washington Post:

PRESIDENT TRUMP’S visit to Britain this week represents a final miscalculation by the country’s hapless prime minister, Theresa May. Having repeatedly failed to win parliamentary approval for the terms for Britain’s departure from the European Union, deepening what has become the country’s worst political crisis since World War II, Ms. May was forced to announce her resignation last month. She nevertheless chose to press ahead with what promised to be a polarizing visit by Mr. Trump, whom she invited to become only the third U.S. president to be treated to a state visit…

Ms. May described the visit as “an opportunity to further strengthen” the “special relationship” between Britain and the United States. In fact, it will serve to put on display the widening cracks Mr. Trump has introduced into one of America’s closest alliances. Hundreds of thousands of protesters are expected to cram central London Tuesday to reject the U.S. president, beneath a huge orange balloon portraying him as a baby in a diaper. They will be joined by leaders of the opposition Labour Party, who along with other prominent politicians boycotted the banquet for Mr. Trump hosted by Queen Elizabeth II…

… What’s clear is that the special relationship is under the same strain as other foundations of the Western liberal order buffeted by the Trump presidency. Most likely, it will survive, given the powerful cultural and economic bonds between the two countries and the enduring overlap of their security interests. But this week will be remembered as a low moment.

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Cold Grey Pre-Dawn Open Thread: Abasing Himself Before the Preachers

It’s not exactly Henry II abasing himself before the bishops, but showing up for the hardcore Talibangelicals’ big “Day of Prayer” sans spray-tan and combover would seem to indicate that Lord Smallgloves, or his advisors, will indeed be leaning heavily into his ‘religious’ base during the upcoming election. (As a different Henry is supposed to have said, Paris is worth a mass.) Typical of the man’s slipshod ways that he couldn’t be persuaded to take the effort of changing out of golf togs. At least take off the cleats!

Roger Stone says Trump’s never looked better!

Sad Trombone Open Thread: Protecting “Dear Leader” From His Own Insecurities

(Jack Ohman via

When the “Big Guy” is so transparent in his many insecurities, good minions don’t need explicit instructions in advance. Per NBC:

… “A request was made to the U.S. Navy to minimize the visibility of USS John S. McCain, however, all ships remained in their normal configuration during the President’s visit,” Rear Admiral Charlie Brown, chief of information, said in a statement to NBC News.

“There were also no intentional efforts to explicitly exclude Sailors assigned to USS John S. McCain,” the statement said.

Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said Friday he’d asked his chief of staff to “look into” the reported request from the White House to move the ship “out of sight” during Trump’s visit.

“Our business is to run military operations and not become politicized,” Shanahan told reporters during a news conference in Singapore. “I would not have moved the ship,” he added.

“The Navy is fully cooperating with the review of this matter tasked by the Secretary of Defense. Our forward-deployed Naval forces continue to stand ready to execute their assigned missions,” Brown, the Navy spokesperson, said Saturday…

(Jeff Danziger via

If Prince Harry is forbid by protocol (i.e., his granny) from doing as Betty suggested below and punching the Mango Menace, maybe he can see that any & every protocol officer assigned to the Squatter-in-Chief’s team announces themselves as a McCain?

(Matt Davies via