Late Night Racists & Their Enablers Open Thread: “Stroking the Head-Ferret” Is the Media Village Idiots’ New “Tire-Swinging at McCain’s BBQ”

Hat tip to Antipodean commentor The Mighty Trowel for the mot juste. To be fair, Jimmy Fallon is a professional entertainer, and should not be held to the same standards as the so-called journalists and pundits defending Trump’s indefensible positions. He should still be ashamed of himself, though, because “birtherism” — aka ‘racism rebranded for cowards’ — really isn’t a topic to joke about.

Or to defend, per “ambulatory cream cheese sculpture” (h/t BettyC) and primary debate moderator Hugh Hewitt, who thinks “the press” is being meeeeaaaan…

“Mad Bitcher” Chris Cilliza, at the Washington Post, just admires the balls on that guy:

Donald Trump is, at heart, a showman. He rose to national fame thanks to star turns on reality TV in which he played the tough-talking boss to a group of aspirants hoping to become as successful as he has been in business. His great gift is the ability to draw attention — and then use that attention for his own, usually commercial, purposes.

Trump may have outdone himself on Friday morning….

The networks eventually cut away from the generals, but then Trump was back at the mic — roughly 90 minutes after his event was originally slated to start. Meaning that he drew an hour and a half of live coverage for:

1. An empty podium.
2. A series of military endorsements/testimonials.
3. Three sentences from Trump himself — one that is totally false and two others that represent a total reversal from a position he held as recently as, well, Thursday night.
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Birther Control: Open Thread (Updated)

Dave Weigel makes a decent point:

A mildly encouraging development: Almost all of the mainstream media stories I’ve seen on Trump’s 90-minute infomercial / 30-second birther statement have noted that he’s lying when he says Hillary Clinton started it. Some even call the claim “false” or “lies” right in the headline.

Open thread!

ETA: Tell it, Hillz!

Big Lie on Deck

Trump is supposed to make a “major announcement” on his racist birther campaign at 10 AM ET. You can watch it live here.

Josh Barro thinks Trump is about to step on a landmine:

Please proceed, racist goon.

Late Night Sideshow Open Thread: Colin Powell, Latest Victim of the ‘Trump Touch’

Gormless Midwestern bigot-politicians, anti-immigrant immigrant spokespersons, Mexican finance ministers — nobody who gets close to Donald Trump comes away without reputational damage. It’s like the Midas Touch, but in reverse!

Colin Powell has become another victim of the Trump Touch. Ever since garnering favorable attention from the Right People for his strong defense of William Calley, Gen. Powell has made a nice second career working the “We’re not racist, we just gave this reassuringly deep-voiced Black guy a six-figure sum to speak nicely to us” circuit. Not even his “aluminum tubes” stint shilling for Dubya’s Excellent Iraq Adventure could ding his reputation… maybe a few DFHs complained, but phhtb, hippies. Powell even made friends with Hillary Clinton, as they crossed paths while she was doing her own “We’re not vampire squids, we just gave this Democrat lady a six-figure sum” memoirs & speaking tours, and was kind enough to give her some advice about keeping her emails private.

But then Donald Effing Trump decided to get off the running-for-president pot, the Russian apparatchiks got busy in his support, and next thing you know, “Leaked Emails Reveal That Colin Powell, A 79-Year-Old Black Man, Acts Exactly Like Every 79-Year-Old Black Man*. Very funny, VSB! Now Colin Powell is just another joke-target on the internets!

The Washington Post reports:

Donald Trump is “a national disgrace and an international pariah” who gave voice to a “racist” movement to question President Obama’s citizenship, former secretary of state Colin L. Powell tapped on his keyboard.

Hillary Clinton, he typed in an email to another friend, is a “greedy, not transformational” figure who messes up everything she touches because of her “hubris” and has a husband still, well, entertaining “bimbos” while she is away.

Former vice president Richard B. Cheney and his daughter are “idiots” flacking their new book, and the Iraq War was mishandled from the get-go by the Defense Department’s top officials.

Other than that, the retired general and statesman wrote in one exchange, “alls well with the Powells.”
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Rotten Acorns Land Near Gnarly Oak (Updated)

Trump’s worthless progeny have run into some inconvenient media peasants during the last 24 hours. First, Ivanka got snippy with a Cosmo interviewer when asked about details of the circa-1960s maternity leave plan and NannyBucks proposal she and her slimy father rolled out a couple of days ago:

Donald Trump’s famously composed eldest daughter, Ivanka, accused a Cosmopolitan reporter of going “negative” and trying to “editorialize” by asking for specifics on her father’s newly announced maternity leave policy before abruptly ending a Wednesday phone interview…

Trump became testier when asked what made her father evolve on the issue of maternity leave, given that he said in a 2004 NBC interview that pregnancy was an “inconvenience for employers.”

“I think that you have a lot of negativity in these questions, and I think my father has put forth a very comprehensive and really revolutionary plan to deal with a lot of issues,” Trump replied, criticizing Gupta for making a “comment like that” and arguing that her father has employed women at all levels of his company for “decades.”

Gupta said she didn’t mean to ask “negative” questions, but argued it was “relevant” to ask questions about past statements made by presidential candidates.

“You said he made those comments. I don’t know that he said those comments,” Trump said.

Gupta clarified that she was quoting directly from the NBC interview.

Trump reiterated that her father should be “celebrated” for his “really incredibly plan” before saying she had to “jump off” the phone.

She probably really did expect her creepy sexist father to be celebrated. What an unpleasant surprise.

Next, Trump Jr. let slip the real reason his scumbag father won’t release his tax returns: because then people would be able to see what’s in them:

Donald Trump Jr. said that one reason his father has yet to release his tax returns, in a break from four decades of precedent for presidential candidates, was that the complicated documents would provoke too many questions.

“He’s got a 12,000-page tax return that would create … financial auditors out of every person in the country asking questions that would detract from [his father’s] main message,” Trump Jr. said in a Wednesday interview with the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

I think it’s time for Democrats to just assert the worst assumptions about what’s in Trump’s tax returns as if they were factual and put the onus on Trump to prove otherwise:

“How can a man like Donald Trump, who uses loopholes to pay no taxes, propose another huge tax cut to benefit rich freeloaders like himself?”

“Why does Trump keep lying about giving tens of millions to charity?”

“If Trump is such a savvy businessman, why is he in hock up to his eyeballs to Russian oligarchs and mobsters?”

Etc. Later, Trump Jr. (or an aide) stole a page from his sister’s playbook and fled an interview that wasn’t going his way:

An aide abruptly shut down a local TV reporter’s Thursday interview with Donald Trump Jr. when the real estate scion was asked about a six-foot-tall portrait of his father reportedly bought with money from the family’s charitable foundation.

“You’re a director of the Trump Foundation charity,” a reporter from Pittsburgh TV station WTAE asked in video flagged by BuzzFeed News. “Did you sign off on charity money for a portrait?”

“No, I don’t know anything about that,” Trump Jr. replied.

“So how come you didn’t know about it?” the reporter pressed.

“All right, that’s it,” a person off-camera interrupted, speaking over Trump Jr. “We have to move on. We have to move on to the next one.”

“I’m not worried—I’m not involved in it,” Trump Jr. added.

“I’m not worried”? Hmm. That sounds like a tell — kinda like “believe me.”

What a trio of despicable, entitled brats Ivanka, Uday and Qusay are. Mitt’s five Mittlets were kind of annoying and comical, but these Trump people are scum. Please FSM, let us be rid of the whole vile bunch forever come November 9.

ETA: By popular demand, here’s an account of another unbelievable comment by Trump Jr. today:

“The media has been her number one surrogate in this,” the younger Trump told radio host Chris Stigall on 1210 WPHT radio in Philadelphia. “Without the media, this wouldn’t even be a contest, but the media has built her up. They’ve let her slide on every in-discrepancy, on every lie, on every DNC game trying to get Bernie Sanders out of this thing.

“If Republicans were doing that, they’d be warming up the gas chamber right now.”

Lie down with neo-Nazis, wake up with Holocaust jokes and white nationalist memes, I guess. 54 more days.

Flights of Fancy

First, a little perspective courtesy of valued commenter Jim, Foolish Literalist (in the morning thread):

2016-09-15 (2)

Don’t be complacent, but don’t panic. It doesn’t do any good, and it ruins your hairdo.

Also, take heart that you’re on the right side. Need more evidence that you walk among the sane? Consider this insane essay that has attracted quite a bit of positive notice in Wingnut World. It’s called “The Flight 93 Election.” The author argues that while it may seem crazy to vote for an inexperienced, wildly inconsistent, ignorant buffoon like Trump — who may very well not know how to run the country if elected — conservatives really have no choice.

He (I feel sure the anonymous essayist is a “he”) compares the situation of conservatives in the U.S. to that of the passengers on the hijacked United Flight 93 plane, and Trump and his voters to the group of passengers who stormed the cockpit of their airliner on 9/11. Here’s how the essayist describes present day America:

America and the West are on a trajectory toward something very bad. On the one hand, conservatives routinely present a litany of ills plaguing the body politic. Illegitimacy. Crime. Massive, expensive, intrusive, out-of-control government. Politically correct McCarthyism. Ever-higher taxes and ever-deteriorating services and infrastructure. Inability to win wars against tribal, sub-Third-World foes. A disastrously awful educational system that churns out kids who don’t know anything and, at the primary and secondary levels, can’t (or won’t) discipline disruptive punks, and at the higher levels saddles students with six figure debts for the privilege.

This is utterly detached from reality. Crime rates have dropped dramatically, as have teenage pregnancy rates, taxes and government oversight. It’s true that services and infrastructure are deteriorating, but that’s because “conservatives” refuse to pay for them. Terrorism is a stubborn problem, but even a disruptive punk in a failing school should be able to grasp that “bombing the shit out of ISIS” when were already doing that isn’t a panacea.

What this person is suggesting is more akin to a mutiny aboard Captain Sullenberger’s plane: crashing through the cockpit door to toss the Hero of the Hudson aside and install Mr. Magoo at the controls.

Of course, even the deranged essayist doesn’t imagine Trump will actually be able to make those damn kids pull up their pants or roll back globalization wholesale. But he eventually gets around to naming the chief benefit of electing Trump, from the “conservative” point of view:

Third and most important, the ceaseless importation of Third World foreigners with no tradition of, taste for, or experience in liberty means that the electorate grows more left, more Democratic, less Republican, less republican, and less traditionally American with every cycle… The Left and the Democrats seek ringers to form a permanent electoral majority. They, or many of them, also believe the academic-intellectual lie that America’s inherently racist and evil nature can be expiated only through ever greater “diversity.”

So there you have it, folks: economic anxiety, that’s what’s driving the Trump phenomenon. Be glad you’re not that guy.

Early Morning Open Thread: Medical Theatre for Morons

trump rotisserie chicken sheneman

(Drew Sheneman via