He sells sanctuary

I don’t link to TPM much because I figure everyone reads it, but I this is an important point:

Perhaps the White House had planned all along for Attorney General Jeff Sessions to make an appearance at today’s press briefing to rail against sanctuary cities. But the timing is consistent with what I’ve long feared will be the impulse for the Trump administration: When the going gets rough (failed Obamacare repeal, low poll numbers, etc), it will fall back on appeals to racism and xenophobia to regain political footing.

I assume that at some point, as Trump’s approval ratings sink lower, there will be some kind of international conflict he and Bannon provoke to get people (especially the media) to rally around Dear Leader.








Saturday Night Fights Open Thread: Is This the End of Little Roger?

I’ve been waiting for the downfall of foundational ratfvcker Roger Stone since he was a damp little CREEPster in Tricky Dick’s administration (and I was in high school). Since the Trump puppeteers seem determined to bring back the full panoply of Watergate-era high crimes & misdemeanors (… the second time, as farce) there would be a pleasing symmetry if the expensively-dressed thug with the Nixon back tattoo were to finally fail his escape from the latest GOP heist caper due to an overenthusiastic investment in Lord Smallgloves’ pinchbeck empire…

Roger Stone, President Trump’s longtime confidant and former campaign advisor, has admitted that he was in private communication with one of the Kremlin-connected hacker personas behind the Democratic National Committee email breach last year.

Stone — one of several Trump associates under FBI investigation for potential Russia ties — acknowledged in a lengthy statement Friday evening that he communicated with Guccifer 2.0 in direct Twitter messages last summer.

The statement came in response to a recent Smoking Gun report that suggests Stone might have collaborated with Russian hackers.

U.S. intelligence officials and various cybersecurity firms have concluded that Russian spy agencies created Guccifer 2.0 as an Internet persona for the purpose of helping Trump win the White House…

Last weekend’s uncharacteristically angry (and hastily erased) tweets would certainly seem to indicate that the professional ‘political operative’ may be worried that, for the first time in his inglorious career, some other minion has beaten him to the sole available FBI-inside-informant slot. Some backstory, from Harry Reid’s former campaign manager:


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Comic Relief Open Thread: Those MARCH 4 TRUMP Rallies

Since I’ve so enjoyed posting those town hall pics, in the spirit of fairness… oh, who am I kidding, let the wild snark begin!

Organizers of the so-called Spirit of America rallies in at least 28 the country’s 50 states had said they expected smaller turn-outs than the huge crowds of anti-Trump protesters that clogged the streets of Washington and other cities the day after the Republican’s inauguration on Jan. 20.

“There are a lot of angry groups protesting and we thought it was important to show our support,” said Peter Boykin, president of Gays for Trump, who helped organize Saturday’s rally in Washington…

In Palm Beach, Florida, where Trump is staying this weekend at his Mar-a-Lago resort, the president’s motorcade stopped and Trump stepped outside his car to wave at a crowd of dozens of supporters. A smaller group of protesters stood across the street…

But such an inch!



Friday Evening Open Thread: Put Out More (Russian) Flags!

TPM explains:

Two young, progressive activists from DC, Jason Charter and Ryan Clayton with the group Americans Take Action, purchased tickets to the conference, and handed out nearly 1,000 flags to attendees as a prank. After they were thrown out of the conference, they told TPM they wanted to “shed light on an important issue”—namely, the drip of revelations of backchannel communications between the Russian government and the Trump campaign—and allow people to “get a laugh out of their day.”

Charter, 22, told TPM by phone that he and Clayton organized the prank in order to “honor Trump’s relationship with Putin.” He said almost no one at CPAC seemed to realize the flag he handed them bore the horizontal red, white, and blue stripes of the Russian Federation underneath Trump’s name…

Apart from cheering on the pranksters, what’s on the agenda as we prepare to start the weekend?

The President-Asterisk is on it!!!!



Late Night Horrorshow Open Thread: Look, See CPAC 2017 — See CPAC Run!

Yes, the American Conservative Union’s combination trade show and meat market is cheesy and ludicrous when it’s not revolting, but on the other hand, the President-Asterisk and the people actually running his administration are in attendance

Jennifer Jacobs, at Bloomberg, “Bannon Rallies Conservatives for ‘Economic Nationalist Agenda’“:

President Donald Trump’s top advisers girded conservative activists for battle with the nation’s political and media establishments to deliver his campaign agenda of trade protection, immigration limits and a shrinking of government regulation.

“Every day is going to be a fight,” Trump’s chief strategist, Steve Bannon, said. “We want you to have our back.” He warned that “the corporatist, globalist media” are “adamantly opposed to an economic nationalist agenda like Donald Trump has.”…

Vice President Mike Pence reinforced Bannon’s us-against-them rhetoric when he took the stage Thursday evening.

“The media, the elites, the insiders, everybody else who profits off of preserving the status quo, they dismissed our president every step of the way,” Pence said. “And in dismissing him, they also dismissed millions of the hard-working, forgotten men and women who make this country great. And worse yet, they’re still trying to dismiss him. They’re still trying to dismiss all of us.”

Bannon, Priebus and Pence assured the thousands of activists that Trump wouldn’t back down from his campaign promises. Pence said, “We’re in the promise-keeping business these days.” Bannon said he’s proud that Trump has refused to moderate his message or to give any ground on delivering on his campaign commitments…

Although Trump was ridiculed at last year’s CPAC conference by rival presidential candidates and skipped the gathering to campaign elsewhere, prominent members of his administration this year dominate program…

Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway also talked to the group Thursday. Other Trump administration officials scheduled to speak include Scott Pruitt, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency; deputy assistant Sebastian Gorka; and Andrew Bremberg, director of Trump’s Domestic Policy Council. Trump is set to address the gathering on Friday…

Rosie Gray, at the Atlantic, on “The Bannon-Priebus Buddy Act“:

While a suit-clad Priebus offered standard fare about taxes and regulation, Bannon, in khakis and no tie, went in a different direction. His appearance was a reminder of how unusual it is that Bannon, whose career in politics thus far had consisted of aggressive opposition not just to the left but to establishment Republicans in Priebus’s mold, has ascended in such a short period of time to the highest levels of power in the White House.
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Tuesday Evening Open Thread: Ya Think?

Liberal organizers, actually (for the distinction between activists & organizers, see Al Giordano’s twitter feed), who are doing very much what the Tea Party Talibangelicals did in 2009, only without the generous support of the Kochs or the Mercers. More power to them (us)!
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Apart from pissing off the Mango Menace, what’s on the agenda for the evening?



Small Ray of Sunshine Open Thread: Is Trump Making Reporting “Sexy” Again?

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Unhappy is the land that needs a hero.”
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During “normal” times, people tend to regard the press as, at best, a bunch of prying busybodies, and at worst a pack of tattle-tales. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that!) But for a brief shining moment after Watergate (and not, I would add, necessarily to the benefit of the profession), investigative reporters were swashbuckling young rebels who brought down an evil cabal which had threatened the very foundations of our democracy. Since some people mistook the movie version of All the President’s Men for a documentary, earnest suburban youngsters with adequate SATs dreamed of becoming the next Robert Redford Bob Woodward or Dustin Hoffman Carl Bernstein. Journalism became a credential-requiring career, not just a job for oddballs too literate for the factory floor and too stubborn or damaged to climb into the better white-collar ranks.

But if Trump and his handlers, on both sides of the Atlantic, are determined to reenact Watergate (second time as farce!), maybe we’ll at least get an influx of bright young minds interested in actual investigative reporting, as opposed to cocktail-party scrumming to join the ranks of the Media Village Idiots…


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