Late Night Creepshow Open Thread: Nobody “Needs” Mark Halperin

… except for a handful of his fellow Media Village Idiots, and the Pale Male Oligarchs who enjoy his very special attentions.

But they have money! So — bygones?


Thursday Morning Open Thread: Cash Hues Everything Around Them, Seemingly

C.H.E.A.T.S! While our attention was otherwise engaged…

Bess Levin, at Vanity Fair, Fire Up the Shredders: Trump Family Sues Deutsche Bank to Keep Shady Finances Under Wraps:

The New York Times reports that Trump, Don Jr., Ivanka, Eric, and the Trump Organization filed a federal lawsuit late Monday against Deutsche Bank and Capital One, in an effort to stop the banks from responding to congressional subpoenas. In the suit, the president’s family and his private business—which he continues to profit from while running the country—argue that the House committees that issued the demands for information are engaging in a political fishing expedition. “This case involves congressional subpoenas that have no legitimate or lawful purpose,” the suit reads. “The subpoenas were issued to harass President Donald J. Trump, to rummage through every aspect of his personal finances, his businesses and the private information of the president and his family, and to ferret about for any material that might be used to cause him political damage. No grounds exist to establish any purpose other than a political one.”

The subpoenas in question were issued by the House Intelligence and Financial Services Committees roughly two weeks ago, demanding information about the German lender’s famous client, as well as documents related to “possible money-laundering by people in Russia and Eastern Europe.” In a joint statement, Representative Maxine Waters, the chairwoman of the Financial Services Committee, and Representative Adam Schiff, the chairman of the Intelligence Committee, called the lawsuit “meritless,” saying it showed “the depths to which President Trump will go to obstruct Congress’s constitutional oversight authority. . . . As a private businessman, Trump routinely used his well-known litigiousness and the threat of lawsuits to intimidate others, but he will find that Congress will not be deterred from carrying out its constitutional responsibilities. This lawsuit is not designed to succeed; it is only designed to put off meaningful accountability as long as possible.”

If the president appears concerned about the prospect of Deutsche Bank telling lawmakers everything it knows about his financial history, it’s probably because he should be. Last month, a lengthy story by reporter David Enrich provided some insight on the relationship between the perennial bankruptcy artist and the German bank; the latter apparently had “a ravenous appetite for risk,” which meant it was happy to lend money to Trump when no one else on Wall Street would get within 200 feet of him, and to go along with his vast financial lies. For instance, in 2004, Trump asked the bank’s commercial real-estate group to lend him more than $500 million to build his 92-story skyscraper in Chicago; it did, but not before employees concluded he was majorly inflating his net worth, and were told he’d “worked with people in the construction industry connected to organized crime.” Ten years later, when Trump was trying to buy the Buffalo Bills and needed to prove to the league he had the funds to pull off a transaction that could exceed $1 billion, the bank agreed to vouch that his worth was $8.7 billion. His former fixer, Michael Cohen, told lawmakers this was an (obvious, extreme) exaggeration back in February…

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Trump Had A Very Smart Uncle

A week or so ago, the Department of Defense, under Donald Trump’s acting Secretary, decided not to renew the contract for the Jasons.

The Jasons are about 40 scientists who can be tasked with various questions about science and national security. Recently, they’ve been asked how long the plutonium pits in nuclear weapons are likely to remain usable (answer: about a century). They were also asked, a while back about a hafnium bomb, which I still see, like Red Mercury, on the internets. (Answer: No, it wouldn’t work.)

The Jasons have security clearances, so they can be asked classified questions. The group has existed for almost sixty years.

The Department of Defense gave no reason for not renewing the contract, so I’ll take a guess. Donald Trump has a very good brain. His uncle was a professor in nuclear physics at MIT, and he had a very good brain. So we no longer need those university and national laboratory slackers when Trump is the only one who can solve the problems.

Here’s a nice summary, with all the relevant links, from the Washington Post.

And does anyone know if Trump’s uncle actually was an MIT professor? Tom?

Open thread.

GOP Malfeasance Open Thread: While We’re Waiting…

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{FacePalm} Open Thread: “Show Me What Decompensation Looks Like, Alexa”