Monday, July 31, 2017

Fiasco









I would take all of this with a grain of salt:

I spoke this morning with my friend, a former Republican member of Congress, who’s as worried as I am about Trump’s mental state and the growing possibility that he or people around him committed treason by collaborating with Russian operatives to throw the election. 

Me: Do other current and former Republican members of Congress feel like you do?

He: Lots of them. They think Trump’s loony tunes, and he’s in Putin’s pocket. 

Me: Well why the hell don’t they say something? As long as this looks like a partisan brawl we’re never going to get anywhere.

He: No one wants to be the first. They worry Trump will start tweeting on them, or his crazy-ass supporters at home will go after them. 

Me: Then why not issue a joint statement? A bunch of Republicans could call for a Select Committee to look into all of this, a special prosecutor. There's safety in numbers. 

He: A few of them are talking about it right now, but McConnell and Ryan don’t want to rock the boat. They want to focus on repealing Obamacare, getting a giant tax cut, wiping out environmental regulations, you know the drill. 

Me: But don’t they know the Trump issues are just going to get worse? Republicans need to get ahead of this or they’ll get bulldozed by it. 

He: McConnell and Ryan don’t see it that way. They figure Trump will continue his circus act, stirring up the press, driving everyone crazy. So they can quietly work with Pence and get their agenda through when no one is paying much attention. 

Me: You mean Trump is a decoy?

He (chuckling): Yeah. At least for now.

You do not govern the United States of America with a decoy; I believe Reich is honest and is recounting what was said but I don't think this is "true" because it too conveniently makes a Republican member of Congress look "smarter" than he really is. The Republicans in the House are not smart men or women; they are clever at raising money and winning elections in safe districts. If there's a smart one among them, then that person left Congress a long time ago. The ones that are there now thought Trump would pivot and govern like a conservative; they thought the moderating influence of the people around him would give them something with which to beat liberals over the head.

Today's Republican just wants to oppose whatever liberals are for (Cleek's Law) and get away with it by manipulating a media complex that already disdains how Democrats govern.















Sunday, July 30, 2017

Who is the Puppet and Who is the Master?




I think we're headed for a long, long discussion about how we're going to deal with Russia going forward:

Russian President Vladimir Putin announced on Sunday that he is ordering 755 American diplomats to leave Russia amid sweeping new sanctions legislation that was overwhelmingly approved by Congress and is expected to be signed by President Trump. “We waited for quite some time that maybe something will change for the better, had such hope that the situation will somehow change, but, judging by everything, if it changes, it will not be soon,” Putin said of U.S.-Russia relations during a television interview, according to Interfax. Russia’s deputy foreign minister said earlier Sunday that the government has “a very rich toolbox at our disposal” by which to retaliate.

The last person who should be a part of this discussion is the paid agent of Vladimir Putin. Have you heard of this guy? He fires people, he can't run anything, and he doesn't have as much money as he says he does. This Trump guy, do you really think he'll sign that legislation into law? Even if it means watching the pee-pee tape on Rachel Maddow's show by Wednesday night? Think of all of the black bars and blurred corners that thing is gonna have.

America's diplomatic response should be, so what? We can begin seizing Russian-owned property in New York City and, by the end of the week, Russia's oligarchs will be screaming for blood. Russian financial assets should now be held and subjected to scrutiny for money laundering. Let's keep whatever we find and put it into a fund to help poor Russians get through the winter.

I fully expect to see Trump's tax returns appear sometime soon. I am not going to believe anything until Robert Mueller delivers something. One week bleeds into another, and it takes days to recover from every flirtation with insanity from these people. Trump's only accomplishment is the utter destruction of normality and competence in the United States government. This is among his unforgivable deeds.

















 

 

Friday, July 28, 2017

The Republicans Failed Again




Tonight, the Republicans failed to destroy Obamacare for what seems like the 68th time. This has to stop. This endless charade has to come to some sort of closure and we need to fix healthcare and move on as a country.

Oh, and impeaching Trump would clear the mechanism and allow this country to set itself on a new path. But, hey. What do I know?















Thursday, July 27, 2017

Scaramucci is Here to Distract Everyone




Unstable pinhead Anthony Scaramucci is here to act so outrageous that you're supposed to forget Trump is heavily compromised by his connections with the Russian mob:

White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci says today's White House leaks are "so treasonous" that leakers would have been hung 150 years ago.

Good God, man. Get over yourself.

I do enjoy watching mini-Trump pretend that he matters in all of this. He acts like he's the one who won the presidency because he was willing to collude with Russian intelligence. The real crime here is how Trump has foisted all of these nothing people on the country and given them some air of importance and respectability. Scaramucci is just like all of the other toads sitting in the pot. Long after it boils, what the hell are we supposed to do with them?

His epic meltdown on CNN today was one for the ages. It was Richie Tenenbaum sitting on the court at the U.S. Open with one shoe and sock completely removed. It was unhinged, unhooked, and unbelievable. And, like all the other Trumpkins, it was based on the fact that he had no idea a document submitted to the government could actually become part of the public record. 

I tell you, we're tired of all of this winning.

No one wants this. People want normalcy. They don't want to have this Sopranos-reject bullshit artist goombah in their lap for the next three and a half years.















Wednesday, July 26, 2017

So Much For Having an Adult in Charge




The question that historians are going to ask in the future of anyone who served in this train wreck clusterfuck of an "administration" is, "why didn't you resign?"

James Mattis should have resigned this morning:

President Donald Trump announced Wednesday that he plans to reinstate a ban on transgender individuals from serving "in any capacity" in the US armed forces.

The decision reversed a policy initially approved by the Defense Department under President Barack Obama, which was still under final review, that would allow transgender individuals to openly serve in the military. Defense Secretary James Mattis announced last month that he was delaying enactment of the plan to begin allowing transgender individuals to join the US military.

You do not make defense policy in this manner. You just don't. It's insane and crazy. Mattis has no spine. Mattis has no convictions. Mattis is a willing accomplice in Trump's campaign to destroy the U.S. Military's function in this society as a reflection of the best of us. Serving in the military should make people proud of their country. Who the fuck is proud of their country right now?

Mattis should have taken a stand for decency. Instead, he pockets the cash they're paying him and he waits for his chance to disappear into the folds of history with his place secured. When did America start producing nothing generals without courage or conviction? We seem to have ended up with a bunch, and Trump owns their asses. They are "his" generals. They do not serve the republic and they do not serve the American people. They are a cabal of small, small men.

Here's the Tweet storm:






This is bigoted, boneheaded, and mean. This is the President of the United States hurting people on purpose because he can. Fuck this shit.

And, no, I don't have anything good to say to anyone who thought having Mattis in charge was going to temper Trump's impulses and I don't have anything decent to say to any purity troll left-wingers who voted their conscience last Fall against Hillary Clinton.

The answer is, no, Hillary would NOT have approved this and she would NOT have done it over the course of three Tweets. We cannot have nice things, we will not see a normal day anytime soon, and I hope to God the courts are paying attention and someone smarter than me has a plan to use the law to overturn this disgusting abuse of power.

















 

 

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Hang Those Votes Around Their Necks




When you vote to do something evil to the American people, it's only fitting to have an albatross to carry around for the rest of your miserable political career:

Senate Republicans voted to advance to floor debate on their efforts to repeal and replace Obamacare.

Vice President Mike Pence cast the tiebreaking vote.

In a dramatic moment, Sen. John McCain returned from Arizona to applause from fellow senators. He cast a necessary Republican vote for the motion after two GOP senators -- Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski -- sided with all Democrats in opposition.

    As the vote began, protesters in the Senate gallery shouted "kill the bill" and "shame, shame, shame!"

    The vote came as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and President Donald Trump dared their fellow Republicans to block their seven-year campaign promise to repeal and replace Obamacare.

    Are they going to have this level of courage when all is said and done? I doubt it. I doubt that they will succeed in destroying Obamacare simply because far too many people have been pressuring Senators to save it. I doubt very much that a heavily damaged Trump has any juice at all. This was McConnell telling his people to give him one so that they can be free to vote to save themselves.

    Well, fuck that. This vote should be hung about their necks and while I'd like to see attack ads for everyone who voted Yes, I want to caution people. Having a lot of television money doesn't mean much if you don't have a motivated turnout to vote for you.

    At the end of the day, all you can do is get ready for the next fight. We have to save Obamacare. We have to keep up the pressure. In the short term, tell them what you think. In the long term, resolve that every single Republican needs to be voted out of office as soon as possible. You can complain, you can stamp your feet and holler, but, really, the Democratic Party should be converted into a massive voter registration machine. Instead of spending millions on attack ads, hire competent people to register people to vote, coordinate with them during the primary and Election Day process, and then act as a massive get-out-the-vote machine. 

    Right now, a savvy person who can register a thousand people to vote legally and reliably in a swing state is worth more than any consultant sitting on K Street.















    Robert Mueller, A Nation Turns Its Lonely Eyes to You




    The fate of this nation is in the hands of a Republican who used to run the FBI. This is not a position of strength for someone who has liberal politics. This is tantamount to putting all your faith is someone like John McCain to do the right thing and cast a vote that would be atypical of everything he's ever done. We have sunk so far as a country that we are praying that a couple of old Republicans who served in Vietnam and made their careers opposing everything liberal democracy stands for are some of the only people left to save it from tyranny.

    At this early hour of the day, a deranged man who holds control of the Executive Branch of the Federal government while his party holds control of the other two branches of that same government is rage tweeting at the Attorney General. He desperately wants Jeff Sessions to quit so that people will be distracted long enough for the United States Senate to allow McCain to stumble into the room and cast a vote that will allow Mitch McConnell to repeal Obamacare. Sometime today, the dam might break. The Senate might finally perform a final act of Seppuku on the nation itself and let the guts spill out all over the steps of the Capitol. 

    I have never seen things get this bad. I was there when Karl Rove wasn't frog-marched out of the White House. I have seen the debacle of Iran-Contra unfold. I was too young for Watergate. I'm not aware of any history where the sitting president was so crazy that he deemed it okay to enlist the help of the Boy Scouts of America to slut-shame Senators who want to keep their jobs. I have never seen this level of crazy. Trump is calling for the Attorney General to destroy his political opponent from nine months ago over her E-mails. If I were Hillary Clinton, I wouldn't wonder what all of those fucking idiots who voted for Trump are thinking right now because, clearly, some sort of brain-eating amoeba turned them into functioning zombies who have decided to feed on the carcass of representative government.

    It is now bug-fuck crazy in America. One man holds the power to keep the country from flying apart. This is why Trump wants to rearrange the deck chairs and fire him. Bob Mueller is an existential threat to everything that is Trump. If anything happens to him in the weeks ahead, putting this country back together is going to take a decade if not more. But here's the thing--we can't survive casting over twenty million people to the wolves. We can't survive many more days of rage tweeting and holding Hitler Youth Rallies with jackasses in neck scarves who don't know the first thing about civic duty and responsibility. We can't hold on if Mueller fucks it all up and indicts the wrong son of Trump.

    Today would be a good day for Mueller to walk up to a bunch of microphones and lay it on the line. "We have clear evidence that the Trump organization colluded with Russia. We have clear evidence that money laundering is at the heart of this matter. We have clear evidence that will show that the President of the United States of America is owned lock, stock and barrel by a handful of Russian government officials. Indictments are coming. Our investigation is well underway. All we ask is for the space and time to do our work and unravel this Gordian Knot called Trump, Incorporated." Or something to that effect. Something to establish that firing him would mean the end of America's love affair with the rule of law. We need that right now.

    Again, I've never seen it this dark in American history. Even when Lee's army was stalking the ground north of Washington D.C., there was a plan to keep going. I think we're beyond that point and no one has a plan to save America. I hope I am wrong.















    Monday, July 24, 2017

    Trump is a Lying Sack of Shit




    The gall of this man. The nerve. The indecency of his statements is so worthy of condemnation that I can't believe everyone isn't telling him to go fuck himself right to his face:

    President Donald Trump unleashed a blistering critique of the Affordable Care Act at the White House on Monday and ratcheted up the pressure on Senate Republicans to keep their campaign promise to repeal and replace the law.

    Speaking on the eve of the Senate's critical vote that could seal the fate of Republican efforts to repeal Obamacare, Trump drew on the stories of struggle of Americans who joined him at the White House to remind Republicans of their seven year-old promise to repeal and replace Obamacare.

    "For the last seven years, Republicans have been united in standing up for Obamacare's victims. Remember repeal and replace, repeal and replace, they kept saying it over and over again. Every Republican running for office promised immediate relief from this disastrous law," Trump said. "We, as a party, must fulfill that solemn promise to the voters of this country to repeal and replace.

    "But so far, Senate Republicans have not done their job in ending the Obamacare nightmare. They now have a chance however to hopefully -- hopefully -- fix what has been so badly broken for such a long time and that is through replacement of a horrible, disaster known as Obamacare," Trump added.

    Oh, that'll fix everything. Once a president with 36% approval and the FBI coming at him on all sides calls you out, you've got to vote to save him in the United States Senate, don't you? Uh, hell no to that. If they vote, don't be shocked to see a dozen Senators abandon him. But, remember this--if the Senate votes in lockstep and finally repeals Obamacare, that's how you'll know the fix is in and they were all bought off. It won't come down to doing the right thing because it's everyone for themselves at this point. 

    Trump is such a bad liar. Would now would be a good time to point out that Obamacare works pretty good, thank you for nothing, motherfuckers? This is proof that Trump is lying and it should be waved in his face by every decent American in the land:






    When you look at the peak number at that chart, which is 18% uninsured, that's when Obamacare kicked in. The result was a plunge in the uninsured rate. That means the goddamned law was a success. This is the chart that drives Republicans crazy. It proves they're lying about Obamacare. It proves that the law worked despite their efforts to let Red states opt out of the expansion of Medicare. The chart you see above makes it possible for every American to conclude that Trump is an inveterate liar who hasn't been acquainted with the truth for the better part of 70 years. It was called the Affordable Healthcare Act for a reason--it was designed to give Americans healthcare that wouldn't bankrupt them. It allowed millions of Americans to stop worrying about whether or not they were going lose everything they owned if they got sick and couldn't afford to pay their bills.

    So, is this the discourse Trump wants? He wants to lie about this shit in front of a bunch of kids? What a disgrace of a human being. What a horrible thing to do. There really is no end to how low he's going to sink this country, is there? Today the gutter, tomorrow the sewer.  

    God, we are so totally fucked, aren't we? We are completely fucked if this continues.















    Jared Kushner Is Lying and Everyone Knows It




    Jared Kushner's statement prior to being interviewed by members of the House and Senate is going to be one for the ages. After multiple revisions and multiple disclosure form updates and multiple times being caught lying, we're now supposed to accept what he's saying as "the truth." The problem is, Kushner wouldn't know the truth if it bit him in the ass. He has zero remaining credibility. He has no right to expect anyone to believe anything he says now that we've seen how he operates in the public sphere.

    The attitude expressed here is, "you're all dumb and I can lie to you all I want and get away with it."

    In an 11-page statement released early Monday, Jared Kushner, President Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, declared “I did not collude, nor know of anyone else in the campaign who colluded, with any foreign government.” Kushner’s statement will be delivered during a closed-door meeting with congressional investigators this week. Kushner also said that his June 2016 meeting with Donald Trump Jr. and Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya was such a “waste of time” that he had an assistant pull him out of it. “No part of the meeting I attended included anything about the campaign, there was no follow up to the meeting that I am aware of, I do not recall how many people were there (or their names), and I have no knowledge of any documents being offered or accepted,” he wrote.

    Do you know what this means? It means that I can guaran-fucking-tee you that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians. I know this because they've already floated trial balloons that say that collusion wasn't illegal and so what if they did. When Kushner says they didn't do it, that means they did it and he, personally, thinks people are stupid enough to believe him. Talk about a guy out of his element. How much wiggle room are they going to give him? Zero, that's how much.

    Any Senator or Representative who believes Kushner is in on this. Anyone who thinks that nothing went on at this stage of the game is never going to be convinced by facts or evidence. The game is up and someone needs to nail this little shit to the wall after he gives his sworn testimony. 

    Isn't it obvious? The U.S. intelligence community knows what went on. There's already a body of evidence that demonstrates what happened. If they're willing to tell us what Sergey Kislyak said on his secure phone to Moscow, then what they have in hand is going to blow our minds when it all comes out. They're waiting for all the little Trumpkins to make their formal, legal statements to Congress so that Bob Mueller can line them up and knock them down, one by one, and charge them with whatever will stick. 

    Today, Jared Kushner puts his foot in the trap. It ought to be hilarious watching them spin this tonight.















    Sunday, July 23, 2017

    This Horrid Wretch Lies About Everything




    They shouldn't even put Kellyanne Conway on television anymore:

    Kellyanne Conway tells CNN's Brian Stelter that she disagrees with the level of attention the media is giving to Russia's interference in the 2016 election.

    If you look at the video, Stelter is outmatched. He cannot compete with her because she is giving him a full court press in the art of lying while talking over someone while remaining calm in the face of any pushback. She lies so effortlessly that there really ought to be a psychiatric condition for it that takes being able to do so on television into consideration for the very definition of the affliction.

    Everything about this is appalling. I have tried to defend CNN but, really. What kind of ratfuckery is this? They have Conway on to talk about how coverage of Donald Trump's treasonous interactions with the Russian intelligence services is "overblown?" This is the most important political scandal in American history. These are the same people who spent all of 2016 making something out of the tremendous nothing that was Hillary Clinton's E-mail server.

    CNN and this White House are performing a danse macabre over the declining prestige of America. They're killing this country--the media is not doing its job and the Trump people want to expire it so they can raise up an authoritarian replacement. Does any of this look like the country in which we were raised? If you're older than 40, you cannot look at what's happening and conclude that this is the same country it was a few short years ago. 

    Shame on CNN for putting this despicable woman on television. They only time Conway should be on television is so she can be laughed at for being such a foolish liar.















    Saturday, July 22, 2017

    Go Ahead and Pardon Everyone




    Due to the fact that a mobbed-up clown is sitting in the White House, I thought it would be interesting to revisit President Gerald Ford's pardon of Richard Nixon:

    President Gerald Ford was never one for second-guessing, but for many years after leaving office in 1977, he carried in his wallet a scrap of a 1915 Supreme Court ruling. A pardon, the excerpt said, "carries an imputation of guilt," and acceptance of a pardon is "a confession of it."

    Ford's decision to pardon Richard Nixon for any crimes that he might be charged with while president because of the Watergate crimes is seen by many historians as the central event of his 896-day presidency.

    It also appears to have left him with an uncharacteristic need for self-justification, though friends say he never wavered in his insistence that the pardon was a wise and necessary act and that it had not resulted from any secret deal with his disgraced predecessor.

    "I must have talked to him 20 times about the pardon, and there was never a shred of doubt that he'd done the right thing," said James Cannon, a Ford domestic policy adviser and author of a 1994 book about his presidency.

    During one of their discussions, Ford pulled out the clipping from the Supreme Court decision, Burdick v. United States. "It was a comfort to him," Cannon said. "It was legal justification that he was right."

    An "imputation" of guilt rests at the foot of every pardon, in my opinion, and while that may mean you are legally free from the ramifications of what was done, you are not politically free of the guilt that goes with it. I bring it up because of all of this rage tweeting:

    President Trump lashed out at the media in a Saturday morning tweetstorm, insisting his authority to issue pardons is “complete” and expressing frustration over stories that revealed Attorney General Jeff Sessions may have lied about his contacts with Russian officials during the 2016 campaign.

    “A new INTELLIGENCE LEAK from the Amazon Washington Post, this time against A.G. Jeff Sessions. These illegal leaks, like Comey’s, must stop!” the president tweeted, following up by stating that “While all agree the U. S. President has the complete power to pardon, why think of that when only crime so far is LEAKS against us. FAKE NEWS.”

    The tacit acknowledgement the president has been thinking about his pardon power in relation to the Russia investigation, and the qualification that no crimes but leaks had been revealed “so far” raised eyebrows among media observers.

    Special counsel Robert Mueller is investigating possible collusion between the  2016 Trump campaign and what American intelligence agencies have said was a Russian effort to help Trump win the White House. In recent days, reports have suggested the president is concerned that inquiry could reach associates, family members, and even himself, and as a result has begun looking into whether he could issue prospective pardons—including whether he could grant himself one.

    Yes, the president can pardon people and probably himself (we won't know until he does it!), but doing so would destroy him and his associates politically. To Trump, there is always the threat that someone will jail him, fine him, or force him to pay a large financial judgment. These are the things that are foremost in his mind. There is no consideration whatsoever of political viability because he is drunk on rallies where chuckleheaded fools bray his name and turn out by the thousands to mock liberals and act out their violent, racist fantasies. 

    I think this is a pretty good signal that there will be no second Trump term in office. Once the economy lurches to a halt, this will pretty much be the end game--remove all legal threats, and ride it out until January 20, 2021.

    Between now and then, there's a whole lot you can steal, kids.

















     

     

    Thursday, July 20, 2017

    Please Remain Calm While I Fire All My Lawyers




    The Trump legal team is changing things up a bit:

    President Donald Trump is reshuffling his legal team as special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation moves full steam ahead.

    The developments come one day after Trump suggested an aggressive pushback against his investigators, telling The New York Times that Mueller's office had widespread conflicts of interest while warning investigators any examinations of his family's finances would be improper. Sources told CNN, however, that these moves were well in the works before the Times interview took place.

    Marc Kasowitz, Trump's longtime personal attorney who has been the lead lawyer on the Russia investigation, will see his role recede, according to two sources with knowledge of the matter.

      A third source said Kasowitz's role is changing because the needs are more Washington-centric and Kasowitz has done his primary job of putting the team together. 

      Instead, attorney John Dowd, along with Jay Sekolow, will now be the President's primary personal attorneys for the investigation, according to the two sources with knowledge of the situation. Dowd will take the lead.

      I love the euphemisms at work here. "Will see his role recede" is lawyer-speak for "drunken lout is run off defense team like a howling dog covered in piss, shit and cat barf."

      Do you make these sorts of changes (and threats, too, don't forget about those!) when you're innocent?

      No. You do not.

      The offices of Bob Loblaw have taken a few calls from the Trump team, but those were mostly booty calls and offers of hate-sex from late at night dialer Kasowitz, who, I might add, has never had a (hic!) drinky drinky problem, asshole.

      I seem to remember when President Obama, after six months in office, had to fire eight of his own lawyers and pardon his cousins in Kenya and stave off indictments of several different fronts while being investigated for tax fraud, money laundering, extortion, debauchment of a toll road, and removing mattress tags affixed to mattresses he plainly did not own.

      That didn't happen? Well, don't tell the Conspiracy-theorist-in-chief if you want to keep your job.















      Wednesday, July 19, 2017

      Trump Loves Russia More Than He Loves America




      I know that you are being inundated with hot takes and fresh takes and double takes over the President's balls-to-the-wall interview with the New York Times, so here's mine:

      HABERMAN: You must have been so tired at, by that point.

      TRUMP: Yeah. It was beautiful. We toured the museum, we went to Napoleon’s tomb …

      [crosstalk]

      TRUMP: Well, Napoleon finished a little bit bad. But I asked that. So I asked the president, so what about Napoleon? He said: “No, no, no. What he did was incredible. He designed Paris.” [garbled] The street grid, the way they work, you know, the spokes. He did so many things even beyond. And his one problem is he didn’t go to Russia that night because he had extracurricular activities, and they froze to death. How many times has Russia been saved by the weather? [garbled]

      [crosstalk/unintelligible]

      TRUMP: Same thing happened to Hitler. Not for that reason, though. Hitler wanted to consolidate. He was all set to walk in. But he wanted to consolidate, and it went and dropped to 35 degrees below zero, and that was the end of that army.

      [crosstalk]

      But the Russians have great fighters in the cold. They use the cold to their advantage. I mean, they’ve won five wars where the armies that went against them froze to death. [crosstalk] It’s pretty amazing.

      Why does Trump talk about Hitler all the time? Why is he so enamored of the Russians? It's the middle of July and he's talking about these random bursts of military history like he copied them onto a slip of paper that he misplaced somewhere. It's mind-boggling--the man is crazy. He is absolutely infatuated with himself and with Russia and with details that, even when they're proven to be nuts, nobody notices this. Nobody is saying what is patently obvious--he's crazy.

      If you parse this statement:

      And his one problem is he didn’t go to Russia that night because he had extracurricular activities, and they froze to death. How many times has Russia been saved by the weather?

      Okay, he's talking about Napoleon Bonaparte. He's talking about the French Revolution's aftermath and the Napoleonic Wars all the way up until he was sent into exile a second time. So, in the middle of all of this, the train leaves the goddamned tracks. What night was this? Napoleon didn't go to Russia that night? Who didn't go to Russia? Who froze to death? Has Russia been saved by the weather? Well, so was England. So were the Romans and the Greeks. The Americans have been saved by the weather, too. So what? I can't, for the life of me, figure any of that out. I don't know what's going on. I mean, wow. And then he goes from Napoleon to Hitler in a flash. Yeah, that's normal.

      It's like Trump decided to walk around with pants. Well, guess what, libtard? Pants are optional and he meant to do that so that a snowflake like you can feel the heat.

      These are jaw-droopingly insane times we live in. I still cannot figure out how any of us are still alive. Would it be possible if, just once, Trump could show the same courtesy and consideration for an American instead of a Russian? Would it be outside the realm of possibility for him to find something about this country worth talking about? Is it even remotely an option for him to stop talking about fucking Hitler and maybe talk about America and American history and the American people?















      Trump Thinks He's a Gangster, Too




      Trump has clearly been hanging around people who like to make vicious threats because some of that is beginning to rub off on him when he talks to elected politicians:

      During a lunch at the White House with GOP senators, President Trump tossed a not-so-veiled threat at Sen. Dean Heller, who was famously a holdout on voting for the president’s repeal-and-replace efforts. The president lamented several Republicans turning against the Senate bill, effectively killing it this week: “The other night I was surprised when I heard a couple of my friends—my friends, they really were and are. They might not be very much longer, but that’s okay. I think I have to get them back,” he said to laughter in the room, at one point turning to Heller to say, “[You were] the one we were worried about. You weren’t there. You’re going to be.” And then Trump added: “He wants to remain a senator, doesn’t he?” The president continued, as Heller’s smile turned uncomfortable: “I think the people of your state—which I know very well—I think they’re going to appreciate what you hopefully will do.” The president concluded with what can effectively be seen as a word of warning to Republican holdouts: “Any senator who votes against starting debate is really telling America that you’re fine with Obamacare.”

      The only reason why Trump would use this syntax is if it had been used on him in recent weeks. Gee, I wonder who might be making serious threats against him and his family?

      I mean, you don't think it could have been the Russians, do you? This is eliminationist rhetoric being used against a man who is clearly voting this way because of the pressure being put on him by his constituents. Trump doesn't understand that kind of pressure--the democratic kind. He understands coercion and the use of terror and violence. He has brought the low-life aspects of his experience to the presidency. God help us all.

      Meanwhile, in Nevada, the voters should probably de-register themselves and plan on never voting again. This president thinks he can control who gets to be a Senator from the state of Nevada and that's probably the most gangsta move of all.















      I'm Not Going to Own It




      This should not be a shock--especially for anyone waiting to get paid for the work they did on one of Trump's casinos or building projects:

      President Harry Truman famously said "the buck stops here."

      President Donald Trump, faced with the failure of the Senate Republican health care bill, says Obamacare will fail, and he'll make sure he's not taking the blame.

      "We're not going to own it. I'm not going to own it," Trump said Tuesday at the White House in his first public appearance since the Senate bill fell apart. "I can tell you the Republicans are not going to own it. We'll let Obamacare fail and then the Democrats are going to come to us."

      All presidents point fingers at the opposing party. But Trump's attempt to pass the buck on his party's failure to approve a health care reform bill breaks with the way his predecessors sought to tout the power of the presidency by arguing responsibility stops in the Oval Office -- and could contribute to his difficulties facing his administration during its first six months and beyond.

        Trump's comments track with his governing style. Vice President Mike Pence, top White House aides and Health and Human Services Department leaders were taking point in negotiating with Congress, while Trump made phone calls and held meetings with individual or small groups of lawmakers. But Hill Republicans say Trump didn't use his bully pulpit to sell the health care bill, and when he did, his comments were in general terms about improving health care, despite the complexities involved in the legislation.

        "He was playing with a firetruck and trying on a cowboy hat as the bill was collapsing and he had no clue," a top Republican told CNN on Tuesday, mocking the President's "Made in America" week events at the White House on Monday.

        Funny how a guy who knows the bankruptcy laws inside and out would know so much about sticking others with the bill. Some day very soon, these "top Republicans" are going to deliver sick burns on this president and they're going to tell the reporters, "make sure my name is spelled properly, because, yeah, I'm going to own that."

        Only in America, circa 2017, could the sitting president say that he does not want to be responsible for a major policy failure and say that he doesn't want to own it and get away with it. He is basically telling twenty to thirty million Americans with health insurance, "go fuck yourselves because I need a win."

        Imagine writing this three or four years ago! It's insane! Every day is insane! And yet, we press on with our lives. Amazing.















        Tuesday, July 18, 2017

        Chris Cillizza is an Ambulatory Bag of Dicks




        Pedestrian lickspittle Chris Cillizza occupies a prime piece of real estate at CNN. I guess this is my envy coming to light because if I had his position on their website, I certainly wouldn't write appallingly trite shit like this and hand it in for people to read:

        Russia is going to be with Trump for a very long time.

        No shit, Sherlock.

        And we know, from oodles of great reporting as well as his Twitter feed, that Trump is uniquely fixated -- and bothered -- by the ongoing Russia probe. We also know that those around Trump -- led by his eldest son, Don Jr. -- can't seem to get their story straight about what happened, when it happened and why it happened.

        In short: Russia was the story of the first six months of this administration, and all signs point to it being the story of the second six months too.

        Again, someone paid you for this stunning analysis?

        Depending on how Trump, his allies and his Republican counterparts -- some of whom are his allies, some of whom aren't -- handle these next six months on Russia will almost certainly determine whether his presidency tips into political oblivion or whether he can wrench the wheel of state back to more favorable ground.

        Given that Trump scored the single biggest upset in modern political history less than a year ago, no one should rule out that latter possibility.

        This is what is called "hedging a bet" and "planning for those easy columns I can write when Trump turns this around and then I can say that I predicted he would revive himself because I am brilliant. Like Trump!"

        But, after six months of "Trump the President," the likeliest outcome seems to be a slip into the political abyss. Believe me. Bigly.

        I think it's safe to say we can "rule out that latter possibility" because there's no coming back from the hole Trump has dug for himself.

        If we were looking at anything resembling an accomplishment and if the steady march to impeachment for obstruction of justice and money laundering had been thrown off in the Spring, I would still say that Trump has no chance. I'm not gonna lie to you--this administration is like watching shit fly though a goose. You don't want to see it but you can't look away and oh, man, that stunned look on the faces of the people covered in grey and white feces proves that it couldn't have happened to a nicer bunch of Republicans.

        He has no chance because governing the American people comes at you fast. He has no support from Republicans in Congress on anything except keeping his job, and they're not interested in governing, either. What they wanted to be doing right now was building a calendar full of hearings where they could bring Hillary's cabinet up to the Hill and grill them for days on end and score points with their knuckle-dragging base. Instead, they're desperate to keep the lights in the building off so that Trump won't call.

        Trump has no natural ability to govern, and this is why he is a failure. He has utterly and completely spent what little political capital he has because, well, when you lose the popular vote by three million and give an inaugural speech that read better when that twerp screamed it at the drowsy legions of the First Order on Star Killer Base, you don't have a future in American politics.

        In the next six months to a year, the economy is going to tank. I think we're due for a downturn, and I suspect that our lack of international cooperation with the flow of goods is going to hit us hard. I hope to hell we don't have a recession, but I can feel one coming on. Once people associate a shitty economy with Trump's nutty way of not governing, it'll be over before you know it.

        I also get the sense that there is a mounting sadness in the country amongst feckless television and print pundits. They thought 2017 was going to be the year of hating Democrats. Everyone was savoring the chance to write their horrible, horrible columns about Hillary. This is one Cillizza was hoping he was going to be able to make bank on--changing Trump to Clinton in an instantaneous affair for the lazy hack. Now look at the work he has to do! He has to remember every time Trump fucked himself sideways on purpose while Tweeting on the biffy.

        But, shame on CNN for every day we're subjected to the frothing bothersiderisms of that ambulatory back of dicks called Chris Cillizza. Really, CNN? What the fuck did this wonderful country ever do to you?















        Monday, July 17, 2017

        Will Trump Prove That He Is Russia's Bitch?




        It looks like the Trump regime is ready to cave in to the Russians and give up the two spy compounds that President Obama seized last year:

        Russia has been pressing demands that the US give it access to two diplomatic compounds seized in the US last year.

        After high-level talks between both sides, one Russian official involved said the row had "almost" been resolved.

        Russia has been angered by the move, with Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov calling it "daylight robbery".

        In December the US expelled 35 Russian diplomats and shut the compounds over suspicions of meddling in US elections.

        The talks saw US Undersecretary of State Thomas Shannon host Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov in Washington on Monday.

        Mr Ryabkov sounded upbeat after three hours of talks with the American diplomat.

        This is a big, big deal, but not because of what you think. It's a symbol for who is expected to act like an equal and who is expected to knuckle under. The Russians want Trump to knuckle under and they want it to happen before he gets impeached. This is a continuation of a broader campaign to weaken the American political system and turn us against one another. In the America we used to know, the Russians wouldn't be able to dictate terms. We'd tell them to get lost. They'd retaliate. And then everything would go back to the way it was.

        We know the Russians were spying. They knew that we knew they were spying. It was a comfortable arrangement, for a time. The Russians know we have properties in Russia itself where we conduct spying. We also know that the Russians probably have other sites where they conduct spying. Don't think for a second that everyone involved knows what's going on.

        What makes this a big deal is how everyone involved is going to tolerate each other's activities. What "gentleman's agreement" will we have with the Russians? What will we tolerate and what will we tolerate?

        If Trump wasn't owned by the Russians, he would tell them to go pound sand. That's what a normal president would do. And the Russians would retaliate and everything would go back to how it was--we would have an understanding with them and they would have one with us and we'd go back to pretending everything was equal. In international relations, always chase normal. It's so much easier for everyone involved. I would take normal right now in a second.

        But Trump is owned by the Russians, and they want something for nothing. They want their property back entirely for the symbol it represents--the dominance of Russia's will in the face of American fecklessness. There are old hand Cold Warriors who are livid about this because, for all intents and purposes, we already know the Russians have contingency plans to spy on us through other means. They don't NEED these properties in New York and Maryland. They WANT them so that Putin can show his inner circle who run things.

        Trump doesn't run things. Trump is their bitch, and he is expected to take a knee and hand over the keys. If Congress doesn't step in, then they're owned, too. That's the way of the world right now, and none of this is normal, not even for a second. It's a travesty of the highest order.















        Sunday, July 16, 2017

        Treason is the New Normal




        She seems nice:

        Fox News host Jeanine Pirro defended Donald Trump Jr.’s meeting with a Russian lawyer during the 2016 election who promised him damaging information on then-Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, saying she would have done the same thing.

        “As someone who’s run for office five times, if the Devil called me and said he wanted to set up a meeting to give me opposition research on my opponent, I’d be on the first trolley to Hell to get it,” Pirro said Sunday on “Justice with Judge Jeanine."

        “And any politician who tells you otherwise is a bald-faced liar.”

        The Fox News host also defended Trump Jr. against accusations that he had broken a law by setting up the meeting.

        “There is no law that says a campaign cannot accept information from a foreign government,” Pirro said.

        This is laughable. It's just partisan politics as expressed by someone completely and utterly devoid of ethics or values. You can be rest assured that this is what Judge Jeanine believes right now; in a few years, she'll believe the complete opposite and won't remember the stance she took today. 

        It's fun to watch them do backflips, isn't it? Not just Judge Jeanine but all of them--all of the people selling out their country right now to defend Donald Trump are simply a manifestation of how ugly and dishonest human beings can get when faced with facts that are inconvenient.

        UPDATE: Some day soon, I'll do a separate post that will lay out my answer as to this question:  Was the collusion with Russia an act of treason? 

        My contention is yes for a number of reasons.

        1. Republicans have accused Democrats of treason for decades for much, much less, so this is not anything any liberal, circa 2017, has invented out of nothing. Many of the accusations of treason against Trump's regime come to us from conservatives who served in the Bush I and Bush II administrations.

        2. Treason can only occur in war time. The Russian cyberattack on America was that act of war, in my opinion, but more importantly - 

        3. - to seize the presidency itself is an act of war; we are not talking about winning a Senate seat in the middle of nowhere or Dana Rohrabacher's Congressional seat (R-Putin). We are talking about the vast war-making powers of the Executive Branch that are relevant to an existential attack on the United States. During Abraham Lincoln's presidency, the continued existence of the United States was under assault; suspension of Constitutional protections was deemed necessary in order to preserve the Union.

        I believe we have witnessed the wholesale seizure of the Executive Branch of government by a foreign power. The Founding Fathers, who are oft abused when cited, would be appalled by this and would consider it an act of war by one of the European powers if they had accomplished this in their era. This includes old Imperial Russia, where John Quincy Adams was our minister:

        [President] John Adams, sent him to serve as the secretary to Francis Dana, who was being dispatched to Russia to seek aid for the revolutionary cause. Catherine the Great refused to receive the American emissary, and neither diplomat nor secretary had much to do. But this remarkably perspicacious boy paid close attention to the world into which he had been cast. “The Sovereign,” he wrote to his mother Abigail, “is Absolute, in all the extent of the word. . . .And the nobility have the same power over the people, that the Sovereign has over them. The Nation is wholly composed of Nobles and Serfs, or in other words, of Masters and Slaves.” The system, he wrote, is disadvantageous even to the ruler, for the nobles continually rebel against absolute power.  Young though he was, Adams was very much a republican in the land of absolutism.

        Do you not feel like a slave when treason removes the rule of law from every aspect of your own government?















        Trump Has Repeatedly Undermined the Secret Service




        Trump's half-assed legal team continues to unravel before our eyes:

        President Trump’s outside attorney Jay Sekulow said Sunday that the meeting between the president’s son and a Russian lawyer during the presidential campaign would not have happened if the Secret Service considered it “nefarious.”

        “If this was nefarious, why'd the Secret Service allow these people in?” Sekulow asked on ABC’s “This Week.”

        But Sekulow suggested the Russians who attended the meeting in Trump Tower with Donald Trump Jr. and other Trump campaign officials were vetted.

        "The president had Secret Service protection at that point," he said. "That raised a question with me."

        This statement allows us to unpack quite a few things. First, as many people have noted, it's not the job of the Secret Service to babysit the Trump children but that's exactly what they're being forced to do--one trip to Aspen required as many as a 100 agents. Second, they examine threats of a physical nature, not of a political nature. Third, Sekulow has delivered his boss even further into the hands of investigators.

        By that I mean, Sekulow has now made it plain that we should find out if the Secret Service was keeping track of every single visitor Trump received in person; this could help determine whether or not Trump himself attended the meeting where Donald Jr. was given damaging information on the Hillary Clinton campaign in the presence of Russian intelligence officers and a lawyer connected with Russia's top prosecutor. Robert Mueller's investigative team can now take statements from the Secret Service detail assigned to Trump and find out where he went, who he saw, and what they know about his activities.

        Do you think a Secret Service agent is going to lie under oath? We know that people who work privately for Trump lie all the time, but the Secret Service is now in a position to reveal a number of Trump family secrets now that they've been protecting him for over a year.

        Oh, and let's not forget that Trump never fully trusted the Secret Service and, to this day, employs his own "loyal" people to protect him, which undermines their efforts even more.

        In an article written by UCLA law professor, Jon D Michaels, that was published by CNN, Michaels wrote that with 'Trump's anti-government rhetoric, and his apparent comfort with commingling state and commercial power the last thing we need is a Blackwater on the Potomac'.

        'His message is clear: We should not trust the feds,' Michaels added. 

        Trump's refusal to stop using his own private guards while in office could raise some legal issues.

        Every time a Trump lawyer speaks, everything turns to shit fast.

        UPDATE: The Secret Service works on Sundays, especially when it comes to debunking ridiculous bullshit.















        What Did Trump Get For His $91 Million?




        One of the things that ought to be tracked down and explained is the role that Mr. Brad Parscale had in helping Donald Trump get elected president. 

        We know a few things about Parscale and his use of digital information to manipulate public opinion and bombard people with fake news, but we really need to focus on what he did and whether or not he received or sent information to the Russian government.

        This is a good place to start if you want to know why this matters:

        On Friday, Trump’s bearded digital data guru Brad Parscale accepted an invitation to testify before the House Intelligence Committee’s Russia investigation.

        The committee is probing whether the Trump camp colluded with Russia in unleashing fake news and propaganda to undermine the candidacy of Trump’s rival, Hillary Clinton. Parscale says he is unaware of any Russian involvement in Trump’s digital and data campaign.

        Parscale is credited with persuading Trump to take digital seriously, and increase spending on the online campaign when it lagged far behind that of the Clinton effort. Unlike other key Trump officials, he has so far stayed out of the spotlight.

        A Kansas native, Parscale coordinated Trump’s digital strategy from the San Antonio headquarters of his web marketing firm, Giles-Parscale.

        According to a 2016 Wired profile, he started out with a $500 investment after graduating from Trinity University, cold calling potential clients before graduating to building websites for organizations including the Trump Winery and Eric Trump Foundation.

        It's one thing to build websites; it's entirely another thing to manipulate information in order to mislead the electorate. The revelation that Parscale was in Trump Tower the day Donald Trump Jr. met with either eight or forty people is pretty important to remember.

        He told the magazine Trump gave “a farm boy from Kansas” a chance. “When I was successful, he continued to reward me over and over again, because I worked hard and produced success,” he said.

        During the presidential campaign, the Trump camp paid a whopping $91 million to the firm, which prior to 2016 had no experience in political campaigning.

        Pay attention to that figure; that's a ridiculous amount of money. That's enough to transform any business into something entirely different from what it started out as. I would think that someone in Congress or the Justice Department would want to really parse what that amount of money actually buys. Maybe, just maybe, Parscale and his company were able to fleece money out of Trump. But, given the fact that Trump rarely, if ever, pays his bills, there had to really be something valuable on the other end of those payments.

        According to CNN, the campaign’s data operation helped it to figure out where Trump’s message was resonating in states such Michigan and Wisconsin, which were traditionally pro-Democrat but switched to the Republicans and handed Trump victory. 

        The campaign was sophisticated and carried on in a vast scale, running as many as 50,000 Facebook ads a day to establish which ones resonated best with voters, reported Wired, and paying for "dark posts" that are publically invisible and show up in a voter's news feed.

        Now, here's where we really need to start paying attention. If Parscale's methods are not illegal, fine and dandy. The Democratic Party better figure out what he was doing and come up with a way of countering this use of technology. 

        If Parscale is found to have broken election laws, I wouldn't put my faith in the Federal Elections Commission to levy much in the way of punishment. Election laws are basically toothless in this country. If Parscale was sending and receiving information through a middleman to Russia, then we're off and running.

        My guess is that the Trump campaign fully weaponized the donor database that it created in the primary season. I think they combined that with whatever they could buy on the open market--failed campaigns, think tanks, and the Republican National Committee probably provided voter and donor information to Trump in exchange for payments (Congress should look into that as soon as possible in order to determine who else was helping the Trump campaign convert this data into something the Russians could use).

        They probably used a middleman. Parscale's company would likely have sent database files back to a File Transfer Protocol (FTP) site controlled by the Trump campaign. There, the file could have been transferred to the Russians. The Russians, in turn, could have their own files filled with U.S. voter information, likely stolen or hacked from sources in the states. Each side could then, in turn, manipulate and push fake news and targeted advertising to the people on those lists. 

        Given Trump's razor-thin margin of victory in the states that were heavily targeted, both Parscale and the Russians could have been working tirelessly to trick those people into believing something that wasn't true by using false advertising. It's one thing if the Trump campaign did this in conjunction with Parscale's company and "won" the election. It's another thing entirely if these entities had help from the Russians and benefitted from information stole from State voter rolls, the Democratic Party, and any other group or person. 

        No matter what happens, Parscale's testimony is important and it will shed some light on what the Trump campaign got for that $91 million.















        Saturday, July 15, 2017

        Ted Cruz Delivers Unworkable Legislation




        America's least favorite Senator has delivered legislation that is so bad, so evil, and so unworkable, it might just be the worst proposal ever, and this includes coming up with a law that would make people set themselves on fire before running through a liquor store in order to be given access to an emergency room:

        Two organizations representing the U.S. health insurance industry just called a new provision of the Senate Republicans’ health care proposal “simply unworkable in any form” and warned that it would cause major hardship, especially for middle-class people with serious medical problems.

        The organizations, America’s Health Insurance Plans and the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, speak for the businesses that would be responsible for making the new system work ― or at least attempting to do so.

        That may help explain why, with a vote on the bill planned for next week, they are letting loose with what, by Washington lobbying standards, sounds like a primal scream.

        In a publicly posted letter to Senate leaders, the two groups focused their attention on an amendment that would undermine the Affordable Care Act’s protections for people with pre-existing conditions.

        The amendment, crafted by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), would allow insurers to resume sales of policies that leave out key benefits, such as prescription drugs or mental health. More important, it would allow insurers to discriminate among customers based on medical status, charging higher premiums or denying policies altogether to people with existing medical problems ― from the severe, like cancer, to the relatively mild, like allergies.

        Ted Cruz knows what a primal scream sounds like. And he may or may not be the Zodiac Killer--who knows?






        The problem here is that the Republicans have to deliver on some sort of law that destroys Obamacare without hurting anyone and they cannot do it. They have no alternative, no experience actually governing, and once you give the American people some sort of benefit, taking it away is immoral and, yes, unworkable.

        More importantly, why would a Senator want to take away health care? It's not like he might be some sort of fellow who wants to hurt people, right? And I'm sure he's not really the Zodiac Killer. He could be, and it would be irresponsible not to speculate on such things.

        So, anyway. Steaming pile of baked turds. Ted Cruz, bad legislation, awful stuff, unworkable, Zodiac Killer? Who knows?















        Friday, July 14, 2017

        Six Days That Will Live in Infamy















        Look at the change in the media narrative from Sunday to Friday. This has been a devastating week for truth, honesty and transparency in this country.

        Let's step away from the partisan reality that we face right now. The president's son accepted a meeting with some Russians in order to get damaging information on the candidate opposing his father for the presidency? And we're sitting here and nothing has been done about it? No one has been arrested, no one has resigned (it's about 7PM Eastern so who knows?), no one is bringing charges, there is no Grand Jury (ignore the crazies who talk about sealed indictments and the Marshal of the Supreme Court)?

        This is beyond ludicrous. This is beyond a bad plot twist in a cheap movie. This is the decline of America as a country where serious shit gets done on behalf of the American people. This is the stuff of a banana republic where el presidente's son has been caught stealing ladies underwear from a clothesline on the wrong side of town after huffing glue.

        We will pay a significant price for this eventually in terms of lost opportunities and lost chances to accomplish something. We are not even treading water at this point. Everything Trump has touched has caught fire and burned and now the whole thing is sliding beneath the waves.

        When will normalcy return?
















        Attacking So-Called Neoliberals Only Helps Republicans




        The fact that this was published tells you volumes about how stupid our modern political discourse has gotten.

        Read as much of it as you can stand, and then I'll answer it as best I can:

        For the past 40 years, the Democratic Party as a national organization has systematically abandoned its historic representation of the working class in favor of a wholesale embrace of the professional elite and neoliberal principles that squash workers' representation at all levels of political and workplace engagement, and enhance the power of the wealthy few to govern all aspects of our lives. 

        Note the demarcation line - 40 years. In the last 40 years (1977-2017), we have had two two-term Republican and two two-term Democratic presidents. We have had two one-term presidents (Bush I and Carter, one from each party.) We now have Trump, upsetting the balance but only slightly. For exactly half of the last forty years, organized labor has been under relentless assault from Republicans. The only reason why we still have organized labor in this country is because of the Democratic Party. In each and every Republican Administration, organized labor has been attacked; that pressure was relieved under Clinton and Obama. However, with Republicans in control of the House and Senate for better than half of each of their presidencies, organized labor was only helped by the veto and efforts to sustain labor in the states controlled by, ahem, Democrats. 

        The conservative agenda of exasperating the already dangerous gap between the wealthy and the workers at all costs; of stripping away all basic services so the richest of the white elite can get more gold-plated hot tub faucets; of eliminating the ability of workers to organize and gain an effective voice over how they should be treated and what their labor is worth; of perpetuating the mythical inferiority of racial minorities and women, banishing them to generationally perpetuated ghettos and kitchens; these haven't been Republican-only initiatives.

        Yes, they have. Republicans have exacerbated the gap between rich and poor by cutting taxes. This is a beyond-stupid argument in a beyond-stupid context. Clinton raised taxes and the rich screamed bloody murder (so did Reagan! so did Bush I). When the Affordable Care Act raised taxes on the wealthy, it relieved the enormous pressure on the people without health insurance and forced the wealthy to contribute to society. That is what is being dismantled right now by Republicans who have more votes in the House and Senate than Democrats. If Congress were in the hands of Democrats, taxes on the wealthy would remain in place and rules punishing organized labor would be curtailed or stopped. It's that fucking simple.

        It was a neoliberal Democrat who acquiesced to demands to gut welfare programs that had for decades helped workers build their lives without an ax of abject poverty constantly hanging over their heads. It was neoliberal Democrats who helped strip workers of the right to organize and supported anti-worker policies like the so-called "right to work" laws. It was neoliberal Democrats who implemented free trade deals that shipped jobs overseas to low-wage countries while simultaneously repressing unions. It was neoliberal Democrats who supported the dismantling of regulations like the Glass-Steagall Act that protected working people from vulture financial firms. 

        That would be Bill Clinton, who had to face Republicans who controlled the House. In order to survive, and continue in his efforts to bring peace, prosperity and jobs to people (and don't underestimate that because, well, the subsequent eight years of George W. Bush didn't exactly accomplish the whole peace and prosperity thing), Clinton had to sign things into law that, frankly sucked. This kept the government open, this kept the Republicans at bay, and this allowed him to continue working in areas of great importance (see: peace and fucking prosperity). It's as if the writer of this article thinks legislative policy happens because one man waves his dick I mean finger around. No, it happens when your party has more fucking votes than the other fucking party. Jesus, I would rather be doing something else right now than POLITICS 101.

        It was neoliberal Democrats who watched (and frequently voted for) the gutting of pensions, the wars resulting in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of human beings, the ability of the executive branch to assassinate a citizen without a trial, the militarization of police, the fall of worker wages and skyrocketing compensation for the wealthy, the deregulation of Wall Street, and the ongoing privatization of public education.

        This is laughable. The president took the country to war based on lies; the political price for that rendered him ineffective for the rest of his presidency. George W. Bush wasn't enabled by Democrats--he was enabled by Republican majorities that passed legislation that he signed into law except for one thing: Social Security was NOT privatized under Bush. The people who stopped the privatization of Social Security were Democrats. Of every policy initiative Bush undertook, this would have been the most catastrophic. It would have taken everyone's retirement savings and thrown them into the casino of Wall Street (which was de-regulated because Republicans rammed it down Bill Clinton's throat).

        Do you see a pattern here? If you understand that good liberal policies only happen when there are more Democratic votes than Republican votes, you might get the impression this asshole does not know what he's talking about.

        While these neoliberal elites who control the Democratic Party may spout off the occasional pro-worker rhetoric, or add a seemingly friendly plank to the entirely meaningless party platform, their agenda and their results are clear. The status quo doesn't work for the people, and pretending like it does isn't just insulting to those who don't live in the party bubble, it's demonstrably ridiculous. As of December, the Dems have lost 900-plus seats in state legislatures, 12 governors, 69 House seats and 13 Senate seats in the last eight years alone.

        Those same neoliberal elites and the party loyalists will be quick to claim that it was the working class that abandoned the party. (How many times have we heard that tired trope about the workers who vote against their own interest?) But it was the party that abandoned them, leaving the poor and working classes sacrificed on the altar of unfettered capitalism. 

        They actually do vote against their interests! Have you been to Kentucky or Kansas or Florida? They vote against their economic self-interests every single fucking time they have a chance because the media has never been able to explain to them that when you vote for the guys who give tax breaks to the rich, you're voting for the guys who just picked your pocket and gave it to people who already have too much money. 

        The idea that Trump is somehow unique, or distinctly worse than other conservatives in his policies is laughable. If Trump were to be impeached today, the same agenda would continue rolling forward without a moment's pause, because for all the posturing of House Speaker Paul Ryan, or Sen. Orrin Hatch or Rep. Mia Love, the ideas Trump is pushing is exactly what they have been advocating for years — albeit with much more disguised and sophisticated rhetoric. The only difference seems to be the more overtly authoritarian, racist and sexist rhetoric Trump uses and the boneheaded clumsiness of his incompetent staff. 

        The way forward should be clear: If you want to stop the conservative and neoliberal laissez-faire capitalist agenda destroying the nation, go after the Democrats. Throw out the neoliberal oligarchs controlling the party with tomorrow's trash.

        In order to save America, we have to let Republicans burn it down because "neoliberal" Democrats are the real enemy? Really? This is absolutely fucking stupid.

        What I'm responding to here is an individual who sees every so-called "setback" as only one thing and one thing only--an example where Democrats sold out the country. Nothing could be further from the truth. The article stands completely in ignorance of how the Legislative branch functions. Hillary Clinton was really a chance to continue the awesome gains of the Obama era and sustain actual liberalism in this country. We have to resist and fight back and find a way to save the ACA and prevent the destruction of our environment.

        To do that, we're supposed to vote for Republicans? Uh, no.

        Here's how the world really works.

        Do you want liberal policies? VOTE FOR LIBERALS. Everywhere. In all parts of the country. In all 50 states. Demand that the DNC support a 50 state strategy. Demand that they recruit candidates who can win in the red and purple states (this means accepting candidates that have some conservative leanings that would otherwise not work in solidly blue states).

        The person who can win a Senate seat in New York or Minnesota is going to be a different kind of Democrat in Missouri or Louisiana. To win a Democratic seat in a red state is a real accomplishment. Don't be unrealistic and think that that person has to be to the left of Che Guevara. Accept that they have to appeal to a more centrist electorate. I realize that, for smart people, this is a no duh moment. But, Jesus Christ, look at how stupid this article is!

        You have to build something larger than a one-person far left utopian paradise. You have to move beyond the simplistic view that all Bernie had to do was say free college for all and it would just happen out of thin air. No, it wouldn't. It would be stopped in Congress by people smart enough to build a coalition against it.

        What do you do? You build larger legislative majorities in the House and Senate that can move liberal legislation forward by SELLING OUT SOMETIMES to appeal to centrists! Oh no! Selling out is bad, right? Well, yeah, but no. Sometimes, you have to compromise and go from FREE SHIT FOR EVERYONE to a more modest proposal of helping people with the first two years of college by enacting a program that gives them the financial assistance they need to go to school and work (like the 21st Century GI Bill for people who aren't Veterans).

        Then, do something smart! Elect a president who is somewhat liberal or kind of a centrist. Any shade of Democrat will do. Really! Because when one party controls Congress and the presidency, they make the other side eat a shit sandwich. Do you want Senator Elizabeth Warren to sponsor legislation that protects workers and the rights of consumers and that regulates the banks? Well, you have to vote for her! And then you have to vote for people who will represent other areas of the country who will see the political benefit of joining her as part of a larger movement to move legislation through the Congress so it can be signed by a president who is on the same page. You have to swallow your inherent purity and vote for people who piss you off sometimes! You have to grow up and accept that you can't have everything you want all the time every time!

        Your vote is not a consumer good. You don't sell it to the purity pony who will give you everything. You trade it for the promise of getting some of the things you want. You can push to make it leftier, but if you're in a red state, you should be happy to vote for a Democrat who can win. Period.

        Right now, Americans are eating a shit sandwich because they voted for Republicans. Republicans want to stop Senator Warren from doing all the great things liberals want her to do because she is not on their team. If you say you want to vote Democrats out of office in order to punish them for all the shit Republicans did to you, guess what, chicken butt? You just voted to stop Senator Warren from doing all that cool shit you wanted. The answer is not to vote for more Republicans--how fucking simple is that?

        I'm going to have a stroke now.