Wednesday Morning Open Thread

Good for the X Factor star.

A note from commentor O. Felix Culpa:

Speaking of ethics and collective action, the League of Women Voters is supporting a “Call-In Day” to Congress today to challenge Trump’s conflicts of interest:

The League is joining with allied organizations for a Hill Call-In Day urging Congress to address President-elect Trump’s unprecedented and unconstitutional conflicts of interest. The calls will support a forthcoming bill from Senator Elizabeth Warren that will require the President to divest ownership of businesses and disclose all business dealings in order to avoid severe unconstitutional conflicts of interest…

To participate, call the below numbers to connect with your two Senators and your one Representative between the hours of 9 am and 5 pm EST [today], Wednesday, when congressional offices are open. You will be automatically connected to your appropriate congressional offices based on the zip code you provide.

Senate – 1-866-985-2543
House – 1-866-948-8977

Script:
President-elect Trump has conflicts of interest that are unprecedented for an American president. He could violate the Constitution and the law on his first day in office because of prohibited payments to him from his foreign and domestic businesses. Every other President and cabinet official before him has acted to avoid these types of conflicts of interest.

Mr. Trump has not fully disclosed how he will resolve these dangerous conflicts. Americans have been given little more than vague pledges about transferring operations and nothing about transferring ownership. Bi-partisan ethics officials from Republican and Democratic administrations agree this is completely inadequate and does not resolve his dangerous conflicts.

Congress must act to protect the interests of the American people and the integrity of the presidency. President-elect Trump must resolve his conflicts of interest and Congress must require that he disclose his finances and divest his business conflicts.

House call: Ask your Representative to call for a congressional investigation to review Mr. Trump’s business dealings in order to identify and protect against conflicts of interest.

Senate calls: Ask your Senators to call for an investigation to review Mr. Trump’s financial arrangements. Urge Senators to support Senator Warren’s new bill that will require the President-elect to divest ownership and disclose all business dealings in order to avoid serious and unconstitutional conflicts of interest.

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Apart from fighting back however we can, what’s on the agenda for the day?



Late Night Music Open Thread – (Dis)United States of Pop: Into Pieces

Something about DJ Earworm’s artistry — the best annual collaborations seem to be during years of heightened political tensions. No doubt in part because the musicians are just as embedded in the culture as the rest of us…








Happy New Year: Ireland Man Edition!

We have an early entrant in the bizarre things that occur on New Year’s Eve contest. This one courtesy of Ireland Man (like Florida Man, but with a better accent!).

(h/t: https://twitter.com/AMoCS/status/815302062829404160)

Hope everyone’s festivities or quiet night’s in are going to plan!

Stay frosty!



Late Night Open Thread: “If You Can’t Get Rid of the Family Skeletons, Make Them Dance”

#ConfessMyUnpopularOpinions: I loathed Singin’ in the Rain so intensely it put me off movie musicals for life, so I never paid much attention to Debbie Reynolds. But after watching Carrie Fisher’s Wishful Drinking (highly recommended! — with due trigger warnings), I suspect her mother, if she had to die at all, would’ve loved the theatricality of dropping in her tracks while planning her daughter’s funeral.

NYMag:

While many paid tribute to Carrie Fisher’s legacy on Tuesday by sharing their favorite scenes from Star Wars or When Harry Met Sally, some fans chose to remember the actress for her work destigmatizing mental illness… Soon the hashtag #InHonorOfCarrie had over 180,000 unique visitors on Twitter with many revealing their mental-health issues…

Julie DiCaro, a Chicago journalist who also tweeted on Tuesday, told the Times that Fisher made it easier to not feel so alone in her illness: “It’s comforting that Carrie, or Princess Leia — who’s cooler than Princess Leia? — was comfortable speaking publicly about her struggles. It made me feel comfortable.” Which seems like the message Fisher would have wanted, especially as she chose to present only her true self, war wounds and all, in her later years.


Read more



Holiday ‘Gift’ Open Thread: Based on A True-ish Story

Looks like that Hamilton musical must be some kind of popular, eh?

How’s the entertainment going, in your neighborhoods?
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Open Thread: Just What Trump’s Heartland Fans Secretly Wanted

… Holiday television “staples” from the days when everyone watched the same three channels, mostly in black & white. For one brief shining moment, they can pretend Vice-President Nixon has succeeded Ike, and that snotty-nosed Papist with the funny accent never showed up to spoil everything.

Trump himself being a big-city sophisticate (for very cheesy values of ‘sophisticate’), it’s chapping his spray-tanned outer-borough arse, per TheWrap:

Donald Trump is so displeased with his team’s inability to lock in A-list talent for his inauguration events next month that he’s ordered a “Hail Mary” shakeup of his recruiters to try to book performers, a person familiar with the situation told TheWrap.

Mark Burnett, who produces “Celebrity Apprentice” with Trump and has been overseeing entertainment for inauguration festivities, has brought in talent recruiter Suzanne Bender, a former “Dancing With the Stars” and “American Idol” booker, to end an effective freeze-out by Hollywood, the insider said…

The Trump transition has been struggling for weeks to secure A-list talent for the inauguration celebration. The only person confirmed to perform at the event is Jackie Evancho, a 16-year-old former “America’s Got Talent” contestant. She is set to sing the national anthem before he takes the oath of office…

Performers who are known to have rejected requests include Elton John, country singer Garth Brooks and opera star Andrea Bocelli. According to the insider, many of those approached have said they do not want to “normalize” Trump’s presidency.

A knowledgeable individual said Bocelli met with the president-elect and agreed to perform, but then bowed out under pressure from fans. The individual also said longtime Trump friend and Vegas hotelier Steve Wynn had promised to deliver Celine Dion, but could not do so.

Wynn also failed to book Brooks, whom he signed in 2009 for a reported multi-million dollar four-year residency at one of his Las Vegas properties…

“If anyone does do it, I hope that the check that they get is in the nine figures. Because it’s probably the last check they’re ever going to get,” Dixie Chicks manager Simon Renshaw told TheWrap on Friday…

And they better be sure that check clears in advance, too.



Monday Morning Open Thread: Holiday Humor-ing

From long-time commentor Roonie Roo:

RoonieRoo and Grumpy Code Monkey’s good humored reindeer Isaac.

… who seems to be thinkng, “Okay, but only because I love you guys more than my dignity… “

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What’s on the agenda for the start of a no-doubt-hectic week?

And a Modest Proposal that will not happen, but is amusing to contemplate: