Open Thread: Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III Attempts to Thumb the Scale, Again

There’s been talk all week that Sessions “ought” to fire Mueller, and replace him with a (Repub-) “trustworthy” prosecutor. I personally doubt that’ll happen, because the blowback would be intense, and Sessions is having way too much fun pursuing his dreams of returning American society to the Fifties — the 1850s, for preference.

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First Against the Wall

I’ve never actually seen two people angling to be the first to go in the revolution, but these two are making a helluva case for themselves:

Tone deaf muthafuckas.

Opportunistic Jingoism Open Thread: The “Diversary” Lottery

Charles P. Pierce, at Esquire. “The Fatal Flaw of America’s ‘Forever’ War on Terror”:

Acts of violence are acts of violence, whether they come from DIY jihadists, or from people driven mad by their gambling debts, or from trigger-happy police. (This would be a good time to note that Saipov got out of his truck after having killed eight people and attempted martyrdom by cop by waving a pellet gun around. He failed even at that. He’s alive. Three years ago this month, Tamir Rice, a 12-year old, was waving a pellet gun around at nobody in particular and was shot dead where he stood by a cop named Timothy Loehmann. The eight people killed in New York on Tuesday are regularly referred to as “innocent victims,” which they undoubtedly are. But so was Tamir Rice.)

Partly because of its unseemly devotion to its firearms, this is still a very violent country, and it really doesn’t have the right to distinguish one act of violence from the others. But it does, because the Forever War has been manipulated into a machine that manufactures a new kind of American innocence—a replica of something that, frankly, never was very authentic in the first place. The Forever War has become a medieval morality play for the 21st century, something akin to the Paternoster Cycle from York, with the United States in the role of the petitions from the Lord’s Prayer. It’s a kind of national Halloween parade in which the country puts on a costume in an attempt to fool its enemies.

That the dramatic cycle is being led this time by President* Trump is proof that history has a dark and weird sense of humor. The president* leapt onto the electric Twitter machine on Wednesday morning to try and pin the blame of Senator Chuck Schumer with his customary disrespect for truth and common sense. The president* has yet to blame anyone for the radicalization of Stephen Paddock…

And it is here where we should point out that Dzokhar Tsarnaev, the surviving Boston Marathon bomber, was tried, convicted, and sentenced to death in a conventional civilian trial in a federal court in Boston, and the sky did not fall, and jihadis with their magic Muslim powers did not cause the Moakley Courthouse to fall into the sea.

That may not matter because absurdity is an essential part of The Forever War, and never more so than it is under the present administration. I mean, Jesus H. Christ on the D train, the guy was live-tweeting Wednesday morning’s episode of Three Dolts On A Divan as his response to a terror attack. The absurdity is forever because The Forever War is forever…


The Reason I Am Tired of This Lip Service from the GOP Bullshit Artists

Everything McCain, Corker, Sasse, and the whole mess of charlatans is saying today was true about the fucking GOP in 2006 when my stupid ass was a Republican. And while Trump may be more crass and crude, Bush was launching pointless wars based on outrageous lies, torturing people, running secret torture sights, fucking up Katrina, having his lawyers write up documents that said it was ok to torture kids, his cabinet appointees were holding fake press conferences where the staff played the role of reporters and so on and so forth.

And what did these bold truth sayers do? McCain ran for President and brought us fucking Palin and then was an irascible prick for eight years, Corker said “gimme some of that shit” and became a Senator in 2007 then spent the last eight years lying about Obama and doing shit like voting against the bill that saved our auto industry, Sasse became a Senator in 2014 at the height of the GOP insanity in the Obama years and hasn’t done a fucking thing except give media wood because he’s oh so reasonable and if anyone can point to a fucking thing Jeff Flake has done well, thanks.

They had fucking choices. And every time they put themselves and their party over country. They could have switched parties. They could have selflessly worked to inform their base and stopped appearing on Fox. They could have openly opposed Trump during the election, but with the exception of Sasse, they didn’t. A decade ago when this shit was obvious, I joined the Democrats to undo some of the shit I had helped create, and I, too, had been a Republican my whole life and went to Hitler Youth Camp (TARS- Teenage Republicans camp) and went to county Republican party meetings from the age of 13 and then got a bunch of years of on the ground training in authoritarianism in the military, yet I fucking clued in.

So they can all go fuck themselves. I don’t want to hear any of their bullshit. Good fucking Germans every god damned one of them.

And if I get in earshot of any motherfucker who says he is a Republican because they are a fiscal conservative I’m gonna end up doing a bid for 1-3.

Open Thread: Suite “Home” Alabama

That “unsure” 11% seems important. CNN:

Democrat Doug Jones — once thought to be a longshot in the Deep South — has tied Republican nominee and former judge Roy Moore in Alabama’s US Senate race, a new poll shows…

Moore and Jones will face off in a special election to fill Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ former seat December 12.

The poll confirms Republicans’ fears that Moore — who campaigns on a theocratic, anti-LGBT message and has twice been ousted as state Supreme Court chief justice, once for refusing to remove a Ten Commandments monument and once for refusing to follow the Supreme Court’s ruling legalizing same-sex marriage — would be a uniquely vulnerable candidate in a state President Donald Trump won last year by 28 percentage points…

Jones, a former prosecutor who convicted two former Klansmen in the bombing of Birmingham’s 16th Street Baptist Church, has sought to portray Moore as someone who would embarrass Alabama on the national stage…

Moore has a history of under performing compared to national Republican leaders in Alabama. In the 2012 race for state Supreme Court chief justice, he won by just 2 points over little-known circuit court judge Bob Vance in a year Mitt Romney won the state by 22 points…

Roy Moore’s Senate run is turning into the roadshow version of Trump’s campaign, and that was a farcical imitation of a real campaign…

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Late Night Primitive Vertebrates Open Thread: Young Jared Would Like to Move On Now, Thank You Very Much

Young Jared glides through his very nice life like an eel through water, boneless and frictionless, buoyed up by an ocean of money. Sometimes he darts out to snatch at something eye-catching — a building development, a newspaper, the well-appointed daughter of another powerful ocean-dweller. If his foray doesn’t work, he glides away, on to the next target, impossible to entrap. Or so it has been, until now. Suddenly the ocean seems smaller, the lights brighter, the predators larger and meaner…

President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and adviser messaged the former chief White House strategist to say he thought the TV hit was a success, according to multiple people who were dining with Bannon at Del Frisco’s steakhouse across the street from Fox News’ Manhattan studios when the message popped up.

The attaboy from a campaign ally-turned-West Wing nemesis was surprising on multiple fronts. For one, Bannon associates and White House officials said Kushner hasn’t reached out to Bannon since he was ousted from his White House post in August.

But even stranger was that members of the Del Frisco’s dinner crew, which included conservative media personalities, thought Kushner was belatedly endorsing an anti-establishment strategy that has many Republicans concerned about losing control of the Senate altogether — one that undercuts the very members of Congress the White House needs as partners if Trump wants to pass any part of his domestic agenda, including tax reform…

Kushner has recently been hosting bipartisan dinners at his Kalorama mansion, Axios reported, breaking bread with people like conservative Republican Utah Sen. Mike Lee and Democratic Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin to identify areas where the White House can score “bipartisan wins” on issues like criminal justice reform.

His thumbs-up to Bannon — which one person said elicited a warm thanks in response — seemed at odds with that patina of dinner party diplomacy. And it could be seen as a sign of the irreparable relationship between the White House and Corker. The outgoing chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee was once one of the Republican senators closest to Kushner, advising him on Middle East issues and defending him publicly amid reports that he tried to set up a back channel with the Russian ambassador during the transition last year…

No hard feelings, Steve! Nothing personal, Bob! Aren’t we all inhabitants of the same ocean?

Via Dan Drezner’s twitter feed, Newsweek:

Jared Kushner “enriched himself” by not revealing his ownership of a real estate tech business that raised millions of dollars while he served in the government, said a member of the House Judiciary Committee, calling it part of a pattern of unethical behavior that he believes should cause the White House Senior Adviser to be stripped of his security clearance.

Congressman Ted Lieu told Newsweek that Kushner’s failure to list a company called Cadre on his initial financial disclosure forms—an oversight that could mean millions for the president’s son-in-law—is an ethical lapse that should have severe ramifications…

The timeline suggests more than just an inadvertent oversight, but an effort by Kushner to hold onto Cadre rather than be forced to divest his interests in the emerging company, according to ethics experts.

On March 9, Kushner submitted his original financial disclosure form to the Office of Government Ethics. It did not specifically list Cadre as one of Kushner’s assets, though he co-founded the company with his brother, Joshua Kushner and his Harvard classmate Ryan Williams, who remains Cadre CEO.

The company was already attracting attention in New York’s real estate and tech circles because of its promise to disrupt both industries by allowing investors to buy shares in real estate developments much like they would buy shares of companies on the stock market.
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Why Does Chris Cillizza Have a Job?

This is the actual front page at CNN:

What kind of fucking moron thinks that Hillary Clinton condones rape and sexual assault? Other than Donald Trump, I guess the answer is Chris Cillizza. The same Chris Cillizza seen here joking with Dana Milbank calling her a “mad bitch”:

At this point, it is beyond fair to wonder whether Cillizza just has a problem with women. He’s dragged Clinton for so long, that I am wondering if it extends far beyond her to other women.

Make no mistake, this is no “analysis” as he has it labeled. And the thing you need to realize is Cillizza KNOWS that Clinton doesn’t support rape and sexual assault, he just wants make her respond. It’s him using his forum to make her jump- he might as well be saying “Dance, mad bitch, dance,” because we all know that if she does respond, Cillizza’s next piece will be “what took her so long” and “was she sincere” and so on.