Shut Down the Long Weekend Open Thread: There Is Nothing Trump Can’t Fvck Up

… not even a fireworks display on the Fourth of July.

Also from the Washington Post (paper of record for the company town whose monopoly industry is national politics), “Evening in America: What it felt like on Trump’s Fourth of July”:

From the president’s vantage point, his supporters looked like they were in cages. Their fingers curled around chain-link. Bellies smushed against butts. When their knees gave out, they sat on ponchos and muddy blankets and squares of wet cardboard. The air, scented by sodden socks and bug spray, sagged with humidity. When the breeze picked up, so did the sensation that everything was surrounded by a battalion of toilets. It was difficult to move, to escape, but then no one was trying to do so. They were grateful to be here, soaked by hours of drizzle, hugged by a lazy heat, waiting hours and hours for him, for the show. The president had invited them to express their love of country in a maze of corrals, on a truly crappy day of weather, but they didn’t feel like prisoners of pomp or slaves to circumstance but jubilant pilgrims thrilled to be counted as citizens of the “most just and virtuous republic ever conceived,” as the president put it…

Trump’s been doing this kind of thing for years, though never with the U.S. military as his production team. In April 1990, when he opened the doomed Taj Mahal in Atlantic City, a 43-year-old Donald Trump arranged 5½ minutes of fireworks that were half-obscured by his own building, insinuated that he had cured a disabled guest of honor and — after his podium spittled theatrical fog — told the crowd to “have a nice life.” (His business would file for bankruptcy the following year.)…

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Well done!

Her Majesty’s Ambassador assessed Trump:

CNN — Cables sent from the United Kingdom’s Ambassador to the United States to the British Foreign Commonwealth Office (FCO) describe President Donald Trump as “inept,” “insecure” and “incompetent,” a UK government official confirms to CNN.

The cables were leaked to and first published by the Daily Mail.

“The British public would expect our Ambassadors to provide Ministers with an honest, unvarnished assessment of the politics in their country. Their views are not necessarily the views of Ministers or indeed the government. But we pay them to be candid…” [British FCO statement]

No lies detected!

Once upon a time, this would have been a huge deal, such (well-deserved!) contempt from an important ally. It may not even be a front page story tomorrow.

Open thread!

Cuckoos, Consuls and Courts

Imagine what a bottomless pit of pure, pulsating neediness you’d have to be to compose this tweet:

I’m not a medical professional, but I’ll go out on a limb and suggest that a person who thanks himself in the third person using his formal title is unwell. I guess we’re lucky Trump doesn’t have any pets to appoint to high office.

On the other hand, a horse, cat, dog or hamster would be infinitely more intelligent than this person, who is deputy communications director for the Trump 2020 campaign:

Flounder here is as dumb as his boss, who also admitted on camera that the case his administration’s lawyers have argued before the court is a pack of lies and that the census question is a power grab, which is 100% obvious to everyone.

To recap, we know the Trump administration wants to insert a citizenship question into the census to bolster the electoral fortunes of “Republicans” and “non-Hispanic Whites,” to quote the dead GOP gerrymandering guru who came up with the idea in 2015. Two Trump administration officials have already perjured themselves about the rationale behind the question, which should be a massive scandal, only the POTUS and the pack of grift-mavens surrounding him do so many crimes that the people in charge who aren’t part of the criminal gang just shrug them off now.

The GOP-heisted SCOTUS gave the Trump administration a huge gift by calling the rationale behind the question “contrived” rather than a pack of lies to advance the cause of white supremacy, which is what it undeniably is. The highest court in the land also green-lighted outrageously obvious cheating at the state level, basically telling a dwindling demographic to knock themselves out in their efforts to impose perpetual minority rule.

But Trump and Flounder aren’t bright enough to keep their big fat mouths shut, and I guess that’s good news? There’s a chance the rubble they’ve made of an institutional guardrail may prevent them from driving us all over the cliff after all. Or not. Gahhhh! It’s crazy-making.


A related but separate topic: yesterday, Joe Biden said in an Iowa Starting Line interview that he’d consider nominating Merrick Garland to the SCOTUS again if Biden is elected president. That would be an irretrievably stupid move since Garland is in the bottom half of his 60s and was only nominated as a consensus candidate in a failed attempt to head off McConnell’s theft of the seat. The other side doesn’t give a flying fuck about “fair” — see Garland, Merrick — so a 40-year-old ideological clone of RBG is what we nominate next time.

Anyhoo, Biden caught a lot of flak for that, but I thought this was actually the more interesting tidbit from the conversation:

“I think we should have been a whole heck of a lot harder on [Mitch McConnell],” Biden said when asked if there was anything he and President Obama should have done differently on the Merrick Garland nomination.

“I have pretty good relationships on both sides of the aisle,” Biden explained of his efforts during the Garland fight. “I’d say, what are you doing, you’re setting a horrible precedent here. And the answer was, I know Joe, but if I go, I’m in a red state, if I go ahead and just call for a hearing, the Koch Brothers will drop five, ten million dollars on my race. That’s nothing about political courage, it’s a reality.”

It is about political courage, but does this next bit indicate that maybe Biden finally fucking gets what we’re up against?

Biden suggested reforming campaign finance laws to allow for public financing of campaigns to reduce partisanship in judicial nominating disputes. But until that happens, he argued Democrats just need to fight these battles with a Republican Senate just as hard as the other side does.

“The strategy would be to go out and actually beat them,” Biden said of what he’d do as president if McConnell continued blocking judicial appointments, adding Democrats successfully brought that fight in the 2018 midterms. “We took the fight to them [in 2018]. In that case, it was about health care. We got to take the fight to them. Part of this is persuasion, as well. And that’s why I’m not giving up on the South.”

Persuasion tapped out in 2010. But I hope Biden talks some more about what goes on in the Senate and makes that central to the campaign. They all should — we have a senator-heavy race, and that could be an advantage if they use their sausage-making knowledge to emphasize the fact that the Koch Bros. and similar oligarchs have GOP senators’ balls in their grip.

The only way we can really pull this plane out of its nosedive is to take on the Republicans at every level, not after a Democrat is president but starting now, during the campaign. People need to understand that.

Open Thread: Report from Ground Zero

Repub Venality Open Thread: Impeach Bill “Very Low” Barr?

IMO, this is not a bad idea — Barr’s extremely skittery about having to explain his legal ‘reasoning’ beyond ‘If the President does it, it is not illegal, that’s for sure’. There’s plenty of skeletons we know about in Barr’s closet(s), going back to his participation in the Great Clenis Hunt if not earlier…