Immigrants Get the Job Done*

The AP reports that the Trump regime floated a proposal to activate 100K National Guard troops to round up undocumented immigrants.

The Trump administration is considering a proposal to mobilize as many as 100,000 National Guard troops to round up unauthorized immigrants, including millions living nowhere near the Mexico border, according to a draft memo obtained by The Associated Press.

The 11-page document calls for the unprecedented militarization of immigration enforcement as far north as Portland, Oregon, and as far east as New Orleans, Louisiana.

Four states that border on Mexico are included in the proposal — California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas — but it also encompasses seven states contiguous to those four — Oregon, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana.

White House spokesman Sean Spicer said the AP report was “100 percent not true” and “irresponsible.” ”There is no effort at all to utilize the National Guard to round up unauthorized immigrants,” he said.

The denial issued by the slab of Spam with eyes that Melissa McCarthy occasionally impersonates on SNL isn’t very convincing since the Trump regime, from its titular head on down, lie all the time. And AP has a memo.

Valued commenter Ajabu had an idea for a response to the so-called president’s constant fear-mongering about immigrants: a photo array featuring select immigrants and “real Americans.” He edited a ton of photos that illustrate the foolishness of Trump’s “ooga-booga” act. Here’s a sample:

Dennis Hastert, Real American

Khizr Khan, Immigrant

Ted Kaczynski, Real American

Albert Einstein, Immigrant

I think I’ll make this a recurring feature until I run out of photos from the cache Ajabu sent, rather than just publishing the whole array in one fell swoop. Sadly, I’m confident we’ll have many more opportunities to respond to scaremongering on immigration in the coming months.

*Yes, I know this is a line from “Hamilton.” I’m still not joining your stupid cult! :)



This Is How Republicans Are Going To Get People Killed

This happened:

A hearing in El Paso County in Texas went from ordinary to “unprecedented” last week when half a dozen Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents showed up at a courthouse where an undocumented woman was seeking a protective order against the boyfriend she accused of abusing her.

The woman, a citizen of Mexico who was living in El Paso had been driven to the courthouse by a victim’s advocate from the Center Against Sexual and Family Violence, a shelter for victims of domestic abuse where she had been living.

She left under arrest.

This is a disgrace, and an incredibly dangerous one.

Most obviously: anyone w/out documents facing a threat from their partner, former or present, has just been told that the legal system, cops, anyone, are no longer available to them. They’re on their own. They’ve got a target on them, as their abusers now know that they can act without fear of official action.

Some of them will die. One third of the murders of women in the US are committed by an intimate partner.

Increasing the pressure to stay in an abusive relationship tees up more victims.  Making it harder — or impossible — to seek official help locks people in danger.

The chilling effect extends beyond the home.  If reporting a crime puts you in contact with officialdom; if agreeing to testify does so…and so on. You get the idea. The risks of trying to engage public safety resources have just shot up for immigrant and minority communities — from an already no-fun base.

ICE, Trump, and the Republican party:  accessories before the fact to harm, murder and misery.

Every day, down every avenue, these folks have got to named, shamed, and fought.

Image: Unknown artist, A Very Bad Man — on the trial of Ephraim K. Avery for the murder of Sarah Maria Cornell. 1833.



And DeVos Is In

Republicans are so intent on destroying public education that they trotted out Pence to break the 50-50 split.

An smarter administration would have noticed the strength of the opposition and found a better candidate. Other nominees have been confirmed with quite large margins. But they don’t care. This is a win for the talibangelicals and the profiteers.

Question- if you were nominated and had this much opposition, wouldn’t you withdraw?

Also, watch the video. No cheering. No one present. No one wants this hung around their neck. They know what they are doing but they just can’t help themselves.








Oh Fer Fucks Sake Republicans

The Trump administration is now literally on the side of kicking puppies:

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today removed public access to tens of thousands of reports that document the numbers of animals kept by research labs, companies, zoos, circuses, and animal transporters—and whether those animals are being treated humanely under the Animal Welfare Act. Henceforth, those wanting access to the information will need to file a Freedom of Information Act request. The same goes for inspection reports under the Horse Protection Act, which prohibits injuring horses’ hooves or legs for show.

The agency said in a statement that it revoked public access to the reports “based on our commitment to being transparent … and maintaining the privacy rights of individuals.”

The reports apply to 7813 facilities that keep animals covered by the law. Roughly 1200 of these are research labs, which are often housed at major academic centers or run by government agencies themselves, including the National Institutes of Health, the Food and Drug Administration, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Although the act covers animals like dogs and chimpanzees, it does not cover rodents like laboratory mice.

These motherfuckers.








So, Did I Miss Anything

I was basically offline all day doing things and out of town, so let’s recap the day:

1.) Mexico and the Fucking Wall

* Trump rolled out a 20% tariff proposal on Mexican goods to pay for the wall.

* The Mexican President told Trump to go fuck himself and cancelled a scheduled meeting.

* Trump White House is walking back the 20% tariff.

* As Anne Laurie noted, Texans are telling Trump to fuck off.

* Former Mexican President Vicente Fox continues to have all the fun in the world fucking with Cheeto Jeebus:

***

2.) Cybersecurity

* As Adam noted, Trump is controlling his online presence through an easily guessed gmail account.

* Sean Spicer is still a moron, and has two days in a row tweeted his password:

* This speaks for itself:

***

3.) General Governance:

* Basically the entire upper management of the State Department quit, choosing to retire or have other foreign service appointments rather that work the Tangelo Tyrant.

* Trump bullied the National Park Service director and called him personally to back up his claims about the size of his inauguration crowds.

* Trump and his minions have pulled all advertising about ACA signups, pulling even ads that have ALREADY been paid for and placed.

* The US has suspended all interviews with potential refugees, fucking people who may have been in the process for years.

***

That’s the big stuff- THAT WE KNOW ABOUT. Oh, yeah. The Doomsday Clock advanced but that’s almost an afterthought at this point. What is this- Day Six? A couple more weeks and I will be begging for the sweet radioactive release of nuclear armageddon.



Government, Meet Bathtub

It’s easy to run a government that does (next to) nothing.

Here’s where Trumpism — or really Pence-ism, or really, exactly what the GOP has been promising (threatening) will have its most immediate, and quite possibly its most damaging impact:

Staffers for the Trump transition team have been meeting with career staff at the White House ahead of Friday’s presidential inauguration to outline their plans for shrinking the federal bureaucracy, The Hill has learned.

The departments of Commerce and Energy would see major reductions in funding, with programs under their jurisdiction either being eliminated or transferred to other agencies. The departments of Transportation, Justice and State would see significant cuts and program eliminations.

The Corporation for Public Broadcasting would be privatized, while the National Endowment for the Arts and National Endowment for the Humanities would be eliminated entirely.

Overall, the blueprint being used by Trump’s team would reduce federal spending by $10.5 trillion over 10 years.

The NEH and NEA cuts are at once symbolic — the GOP is killing stuff liberals like, which is reward enough in those quarters — and, I think, intended to distract from other hugely reckless choices:

The Heritage blueprint used as a basis for Trump’s proposed cuts calls for eliminating several programs that conservatives label corporate welfare programs: the Minority Business Development Agency, the Economic Development Administration, the International Trade Administration and the Manufacturing Extension Partnership. The total savings from cutting these four programs would amount to nearly $900 million in 2017.

At the Department of Justice, the blueprint calls for eliminating the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services, Violence Against Women Grants and the Legal Services Corporation and for reducing funding for its Civil Rights and its Environment and Natural Resources divisions.

At the Department of Energy, it would roll back funding for nuclear physics and advanced scientific computing research to 2008 levels, eliminate the Office of Electricity, eliminate the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy and scrap the Office of Fossil Energy, which focuses on technologies to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

Under the State Department’s jurisdiction, funding for the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, the Paris Climate Change Agreement and the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change are candidates for elimination.

The single most important point I can make is that this is the Kansas-ification of America.  This isn’t a Trump policy choice.  This is Mike Pence shepherding plans the Republican Party has been trying to implement for years, decades even.  I doubt it will all get through, but much of it will, I’d guess, and when it does we will need to hang every shitty outcome and terrible choice around the neck of every Republican officeholder.

This is what they want. This is what they told us they wanted. They’re likely going to get it, to some approximation.  And they’re going to have to own it, so that once again, Democrats can come in and fix the serial catastrophes we’re going to witness very damn soon.

Also, too — who wants to bet all the pieties about the deficit and restoring balance to the budget will fall to the tax cuts to come?

Fuck it.  I’m heading back to the seventeenth century.

Image: Francesco de Rossi, Bathesheba at her Bath1552-1554.



Engulf & Devour, Inc.

As expected, Trump is absorbing the United States government into his family cartel and will install his eldest daughter and her husband in the White House as senior advisors — the latter, at least, on an official basis, according to NBC:

President-elect Donald Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner will be named senior adviser to the president, a senior transition official confirms to NBC News.

Kushner was an influential behind the scenes confidant to his father-in-law throughout the 2016 campaign. But a number of legal questions complicate his potential role in the incoming administration.

Don’t worry about those legal complications — Trump will brazen it out. His surrogate Newt Gingrich already dismissed such worries by suggesting that Trump could just issue a blanket pardon to family members who flout any applicable anti-nepotism laws.

Like Trump, Kushner is a real estate developer who will be formulating policies that can enhance his vast wealth. I suspect he’ll enter into a flimsy “half-blind trust” arrangement like the one Trump himself has proposed and call it clean.

Whatever it takes, no matter what heat it generates, Trump is going to find a way to have the kiddies involved, and I don’t think it’s just because the grift opportunities will be so epic. I think he requires their presence because he’s not mentally stable enough to function without them.

Anyhoo, this concludes the latest episode of, “Why Are We in This Handbasket, and Where the Hell Are We Going?” Open thread!