Shithole

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The above image is my editorial change for the cover of the New Yorker. 

I hate to criticize any artist, especially the great Anthony Russo, but this comes down to the editing of the image and the decisions behind it. Yes, it is perfectly minimalist in every way. I love the image, I love the use of space to show the diminishment of the president and the literal hole in which he resides.

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But here's the thing. The fucking hole has to be brown.

I already know I am wrong. I apologize. But, dammit, the hole HAS TO BE BROWN.

I don't know why this bothered me when I saw it. And, immediately, I second guessed myself. If the artist intended a minimalistic approach, then black and white should remain that way. In this case, the yellowing of Trump's fake hair - rendered tan here - meant that color needs to be present.

Hence, the goddamned hole is brown.

What the Hell Kind of a Country Is This Anyway?

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There are two things that have sort of collided with one another this week, and I should clear the air.

One, I think Facebook has become so toxic and so inimical to the idea of sharing information of value and then commenting on it, I shut down my account. This has meant that there is no reason to host advertising here. The business model for "blogging" is essentially dead now. Anyone who reads this gets to read it free from bullshit and any need to worry about why it is here and why it is being said. The things that I do won't trigger weird ads and so on and so forth. The price for being here? It is nothing. That's the way it should be.

Two, this country is severely fucked right now. When I saw that the President of the United States called Haiti and the entire continent of Africa a "shithole," it broke me. What do you say to that? You can be outraged, you can attack, and you can use foul language. You can complain that the president is a racist asshole. At the end of the day, a parent has to explain the word shithole to a child; a person who came here from those places takes a hit on their self-esteem. The image of this country is diminished; our standing among the nations of the Earth falls.

What the hell do we do now?

We resist. That's the only path forward. We have to resist this insanity and continue to identify what's being done and condemn it and inform ourselves. It's no use giving up. Then, the bastards win.

Sunlight. That's the disinfectant that this stain on the American character needs most of all.

Why, Yes, a Sitting President Can Testify Under Oath

  President Bill Clinton, testifying before a Grand Jury, September 21, 1998

President Bill Clinton, testifying before a Grand Jury, September 21, 1998

Well, horror of horrors, someone has got it in their head that Special Counsel Robert Mueller simply cannot call on the President of the United States to testify under oath and answer questions about Russia.

This can't happen, right?

Special counsel Robert S. Mueller III has told President Trump’s legal team that his office is likely to seek an interview with the president, triggering a discussion among his attorneys about how to avoid a sit-down encounter or set limits on such a session, according to two people familiar with the talks.

Mueller raised the issue of interviewing Trump during a late-December meeting with the president’s lawyers John Dowd and Jay Sekulow. Mueller deputy James Quarles, who oversees the White House portion of the special counsel investigation, also attended.

The special counsel’s team could interview Trump soon on some limited portion of questions — possibly within the next several weeks, according to a person close to the president, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe internal conversations. 

“This is moving faster than anyone really realizes,” the person said. Trump is comfortable participating in an interview and believes it would put to rest questions about whether his campaign coordinated with Russia in the 2016 election, the person added.

What? Really?

As Trump might say, this might be consensual, but it's certainly not presidented.

The very idea that a sitting president would have to answer questions put to him by lawyers is shocking, to say the least. Under oath? What?

Oh, that just couldn't be! No president has ever been asked by a Special Counsel to to this! I have it on good authority that, next week sometime, Hillary will be deposed by twenty special FBI agents and the Marshal of the Supreme Court! And...and...and...

Oh, there's video?

Damn.