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Trump Had A Playdate With A Fellow Fascist Dipsh*t Today

Everything about Trump's appearances with Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro has been just really really stupid.

An unhinged wannabe fascist who tweets about golden showers did a news conference in the Rose Garden this afternoon. Also, Donald Trump was there.

Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro is in town, and everything about today's public appearance with Trump and Bolsonaro has been real stupid, just like how it was real stupid when Bolsonaro's stupid son was the stupid guest of honor the other night at a stupid Steve Bannon event at the stupid Trump trash palace hotel in DC.

During their pool spray, Trump excitedly told reporters that he was making plans to give NATO privileges to Brazil, because of how Brazil elected a big gross dipshit just like America did. Of course, considering how Trump treats actual NATO countries, Bolsonaro might want to reconsider whether he wants that.

Then a reporter asked him about his blubbering whiny-ass attacks on John McCain, who is still dead.

That's right, Donald Trump didn't even avoid the question about his very embarrassing behavior. He spoke about McCain as if McCain were still alive, whined about McCain killing Obamacare repeal, and concluded by saying, "I was never a fan of John McCain, and I never will be." As for McCain, he will continue living rent-free in the president's nightmares and his face will be the face of Trump's insecurities, because we guess that's what happens to John McCains when they die.

But enough about the pool spray! After they met in the Oval Office and did whatever fascists who should be prohibited entry to the White House via an electric doggie fence do (sniffed each other's butts, probably), they entered the Rose Garden and proceeded to hike their legs on democracy some more.

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Anti-Vaxxers Harassing Moms Whose Babies Died, So That's TERRIFIC!

Heck of a way to win adherents for a fringe position.

CNN is out today with a story on members of the anti-vaccination/pro-disease movement who have found a delightful new way to win converts to their side in the war on science: find parents (mothers, generally) who have recently lost a child to a preventable disease, and then harass them on social media, because after all, good people refuse vaccines and anyone who advocates for vaccines must be burned to the ground. As your lawyer (we are not a lawyer), we advise you to secure any hurlable heavy objects near you before reading.

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Putin's Latest Fascist Law Will Make Trump Jizz Himself SILLY

Time for a quick dispatch from Russia, where Donald Trump's handler Vladimir Putin just signed a law that would/will make Trump literally squeal with jealousy. Tell us, Bloomberg:

President Vladimir Putin signed laws punishing online media and individuals for spreading "fake news" or material that's considered insulting to Russian officials.

Prosecutors can now complain about online publications to the state communications watchdog, which has powers to block access to the websites if their owners fail to remove the material promptly. Publications found guilty of spreading "unreliable socially significant information" may face fines of as much as 1.5 million rubles ($23,000).

Individuals also face fines and up to 15 days in jail if they publish material online that expresses "clear disrespect for society, the state, the official state symbols of the Russian Federation, the Constitution of the Russian Federation and bodies exercising state power."

That's about what we'd expect from the guy who, in 2013, banned "gay propaganda" to minors, by which they meant being open and honest about the fact that gay people exist. (That law is not all that different from a bill that has often been introduced in the shithole totalitarian nation of ... um, Tennessee.)

So anyway, with the signing of this new bill, you can officially get in trouble in Russia -- we say "officially" because you could already get murdered by Putin's thugs for saying something mildly critical about the government or being gay or being a journalist who tells the truth -- if you say mean swears about Russian government officials (all of whom should go fuck themselves with a Matryoshka doll) or if you propagate "fake news," which in an authoritarian state means news that displeases Dear Leader. (Also Donald Trump's definition.)

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George And Kellyanne Conway Fighting Again, About How Her Boss Is Psychopath Who Will Kill Us All

Uh oh, looks like George Conway, husband of Kellyanne, is going to be sleeping on the couch for another week, because they are having That Fight They Always Have, the one where he says her boss (the president) is certifiably mentally unstable, and she's like "nuh uh," and we guess she reminds him that if that so-called certifiably mentally unstable person wasn't president, then she wouldn't be making a government salary for going on Fox News and lying to the American people.

It started this weekend with Donald Trump's latest Twitter rampage, which is still going on, and which avid watchers of Trump's Twitter habits agree seems to suggest that he is real upset about something. Like, more than usual. The sort of upset he gets when Robert Mueller is about to arrest his son, maybe. You know, ALLEGEDLY.

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Inconsolable Dipsh*t Demands Dead Guy Stop Hurting His Feelings

If you are a normal American, you might have spent your Sunday celebrating St. Patrick's Day. Or maybe you just had brunch or maybe you cleaned your house or maybe you just lay around and watched Netflix. But if you were the president of the United States, you were celebrating the Day Of The Dead (Guy Who Refuses To Stop Hurting Your Feelings Even Though He Is Dead), which means you telegraphed your insecurities by tweeting insults at John McCain, who is, again, a dead person.

We feel like we say this a lot, but this is not normal.

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SCOTUS

SCOTUS Says F**K You To Immigrants & Due Process

Time to win back the White House and stack the hell out of the Court.

The Supreme Court, a theoretically legitimate institution, declared Tuesday that the US government can treat immigrants awaiting deportation like garbage. Specifically, ICE can "pick up" these immigrants and "detain" them "indefinitely" (a long-ass time). ICE can do this whenever it pleases, not just after these immigrants have completed prison terms for any criminal convictions.

The media has already hailed this as a "victory" for Donald Trump, because they can't help playing to his colossal ego. The 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals, which Trump has criticized despite knowing as much about the law as he does fine dining, ruled in 2016 that convicted immigrants could not be indefinitely detained after completing their sentences. The 9th Circuit said they could seek bond hearings and advocate for their release.

The 9th Circuit case was a class-action suit filed in the belief that immigrants had human rights. The plaintiffs were legal US residents: Cambodian immigrant Mony Preap, convicted of marijuana possession, and Palestinian immigrant Bassam Yusuf Khoury, convicted of attempted to manufacture a controlled substance. Preap was convicted in 2006 but ICE didn't arrest him then. When he was later convicted of battery, which does not trigger the mandatory detention statute, ICE took him into custody but denied him a bond hearing.

Justice Samuel Alito, who wrote today's SCOTUS opinion, scoffed at the notion of "due process" for mere noncitizens. He argued that "the Secretary's failure to abide by this time limit would not cut off her power to arrest under subsection (c)(1). That is so because, as we have held time and again, an official's crucial duties are better carried out late than never."

Alito refers to Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen, a nefarious and heartless incompetent whose "crucial duties" involve locking up children in cages, some of whom die in the process. Pretty much everything on her "to-do" list should be carried out "never," forget "late" or even "promptly." It's as if the Court recognizes that Nielsen, while evil, is also too inept to send ICE after immigrants in a timely fashion. Better to let her have all the time she needs. Let's not overly tax the Homeland Security secretary.

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popular

The Germans Are Calling Us Fascists, Is America Great Again Now?

That was a rhetorical question.

Spoiler Alert: WE ARE. It only took 70 years, but we are now so evil that mainstream German politicians are calling for the expulsion of our Ambassador Richard Grenell for behaving "like a high commissioner of an occupying power." Before everything went to shit, American diplomats would practice actual diplomacy, quietly bolstering our relationship with the host country and pressing US priorities. Not so Grenell, who tweeted a threat to sanction German companies within hours of his appointment last May.

Things did not improve with time. Grenell parroted Donald Trump's unconcealed loathing for the leader of the free world -- Angela Merkel, obvs -- appearing frequently on Fox to give Tucker Carlson an update on "elites in Berlin" and their lamentable failure to secure the border from hordes of scary immigrants. In one such interview in November, Grenell harshly criticized the sitting German government and suggested that the country needed a change of leadership as in Austria, where a rightwing anti-immigrant party took power in 2017.

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Russia

Michael Cohen Warrant Docs Would Freak Trump The F*ck Out, If Trump Could Read (Allegedly!)

We're not saying he can't read. We're just saying documents like these are way above his pay grade.

A judge ordered the redacted release of MANY PAGES of documents related to the FBI's warrants to raid Michael Cohen's shit and put wire tapps in his bottom and listen to his emails, and hooray, now we get to read them!

If you're looking for the news in all this, it's that the campaign finance porn payoff money conspiracy to influence the election is still very much a live investigation, which means if you happen to be named as Individual-1 in any matter related to that -- like, if somebody pleaded guilty to taking part in that criminal conspiracy at the direction of Individual-1, who is now the president of the United States -- then you might be well within your rights to be absolutely panicked right now.

That's right, REDACTED.

And how is your week going, Donald Trump? Oh yeah, that's right, you're losing all your shit.

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SCOTUS

Devin Nunes Sues Devin Nunes's Cow For Alienation (And Sedition) Of Affection

Oh you dumb idiot bastard.

This morning, after giving Fox News a 12-hour head start with a yet-to-be-filed copy, Devin Nunes and a Virginia lawyer who may not have the best interests of a free press at heart sued some folks. They sued Twitter, and some punk GOP operative woman who probably sucks, and her (they allege) conspirators, Devin Nunes' Mom and Devin Nunes' Cow.

Wonkette would like to take this opportunity to sue Devin Nunes' Cow for stealing our shtick, the one we invented and which is very extraordinarily clever, and I came up with it and then set Evan loose on it one day when I noticed haw haw that Devin Nunes studied animal HUSBANDRY and even though I know that is just fancy for "farming," I said, "HEY, DO YOU THINK DEVIN NUNES IS FUCKING HIS COW?" Sure, it's no Jerry Falwell losing his virginity to his mother in an outhouse -- because it's ONE MILLION TIMES FUNNIER, STUPID DUMB LARRY FLYNT! The Supreme Court -- at least in the old liberal Rehnquist days, lol -- it would doubtless agree!

Oh, wait, we just remembered you can't copyright an idea, which makes us a better lawyer than Devin Nunes's Virginia dude. Allegedly. We opine.

Nunes's grievances are many -- as they should be with a demand that the courts award him $250 million -- and they are dumb.

How Dumb Are They?

Devin Nunes and his Free Speech Hero lawyer, Steven Biss -- who once sued a paper for printing "fake news" about a school board member that was actually very real news -- have several complaints. (After a very long introduction in which it is explained for no reason at all that Devin Nunes once introduced a bill for The Troops.) The first complaint, about which we do not care, is that Nunes claims he is being "shadowbanned" by Twitter. Fox News's Judge Andrew Napolitano made quick work of that one; a private company, despite being the new "town square," does not have to give untrammeled access to its platform, and may in fact, thanks to the Communications Decency Act, censor people. This was to Devin Nunes's benefit yesterday when Twitter suspended user Devin Nunes' Mom for being gross and mean and VERY hilarious and sounding just exactly like a common Wonkette.

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Gay Stuff

Oh, F*ck You Joe Manchin (Part 9,237)

He supports equality, sure, but not for everybody.

Senator Joe Manchin (D? -- West Virginia) announced yesterday he just can't bring himself to support national anti-discrimination protections for LGBTQ people because by gosh, it's got too much equality in it. That makes Manchin the sole Democrat in the Senate refusing to cosponsor the Equality Act, which would add protections for gender identity and sexual orientation to the Civil Rights Act and the Fair Housing Act. All other 46 Dems in the Senate signed on when the bill was introduced last week, but Joe Manchin says he just can't because what if trans kids in high school pee in a restroom bigots think they shouldn't pee in?

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News

Does Deutsche Bank LIKE IT When Trump Is Nasty?

A new report in the New York Times suggests the bank has known Trump was screwing them all along, and they've just gone along with it. Totally normal!

We know a few things about Donald Trump's richness, or lack of it. We know he's been shall we say reticent about releasing his tax returns for several years running, and many suspect it's partially because they show that he isn't as rich as he says he is. We know Michael Cohen testified to Congress that Trump would rig up his financial statements, either to inflate his assets -- like when he was trying to buy something big like the Buffalo Bills or get financing for big projects, to make it look like he could afford it, AKA bank fraud -- or deflate them, like if he was trying to commit insurance fraud. ALLEGEDLY.

Rachel Maddow had a fascinating and hilarious report a couple weeks ago about a particular asset on those financial disclosure forms, Trump's Seven Springs estate in Bedford, New York, which he bought for $7.5 million in 1995, but suddenly in 2012 Trump decided for the purposes of a financial disclosure that it was worth $291 MILLION DOLLARS IN AMERICAN CURRENCY. The next year, the tax assessor put it at $18.9 million. (Trump is apparently bad at hiding these things in plain sight.)

Whenever the subject of Trump's weird money comes up, the discussion inevitably leads to Deutsche Bank, which has its own massive problems (Russian money laundering, anyone?), and which kept giving Trump money, long after every other American bank decided Trump was dead to them -- even after Trump personally screwed Deutsche Bank. And the question has always been OMG LOL WTF WHYYYYYYYYY?

Oh yeah, another thing we know about Trump's relationship with Deutsche Bank? One of the times he tried to have special counsel Robert Mueller fired, it was because there were news reports that Mueller was requesting records pertaining to Trump's relationship with Deutsche Bank. So that is interesting and strange and kind of screams "THERE ARE CRIMES HERE, LOOK HERE FOR THE CRIMES."

David Enrich at the New York Times published a gigantic thing yesterday that tells us one important thing, which is that it seems Deutsche Bank totally knew Trump was screwing them in real time, that they knew multiple times he was lying about his assets, and they ... just kept working with him anyway! Like you do!

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Culture Wars

Gillibrand Talks Immigration, Education, That Other Thing You Won't Shut Up About At MSNBC Town Hall

The junior senator from NY crushed it.

We have a special place in our heart for Kirsten Gillibrand, who was our home state senator during our last few years in New York. She's smart, gutsy, and knows her stuff. MSNBC hosted a town hall last night for the now official presidential candidate, who came out swinging against Donald Trump.

GILLIBRAND: One of the reasons why I'm running for president is because of what Donald Trump has done to this country. He's made her family afraid to worship. He has spread fear and hate and degradation across this country. He has spewed hate, racism, anti-Semitism and has inspired more.

A Muslim woman in the audience expressed concern for her community after the New Zealand mass shooting. She found no comfort in Trump's general "could give a crap" response to violence against Americans who worship differently than he pretends. Gillibrand vowed to "stand up to white nationalism." This truly goes the extra mile, because the current president won't even acknowledge white nationalism exists. We assume he passes by a mirror at least once or twice a day so that's pretty willful denial.

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2020 presidential election

Elizabeth Warren Gonna Yell That Old Electoral College Right Out Of Town!

She's so fucking awesome.

Elizabeth Warren held a town hall at Jackson State University last night, and one member of the audience at the historically black university wanted to know about voting: What would Warren do to protect voting rights? Warren went one better than calling for laws protecting the right to vote; she'd like to see a constitutional amendment. That's good! And then she went a step further and said it's time to get rid of the Electoral College, which got one of her biggest ovations of the night.

Here, have some video:

Elizabeth Warren: Get rid of the Electoral College www.youtube.com

Warren's ideas went beyond the suite of voting protections in House Democrats' "For the People Act," a blueprint for voting reforms that can be enacted if Dems retake the Senate and presidency in 2020. To prevent fuckery, let's ensure voting rights through a constitutional amendment:

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2016 Presidential Election

Brother Of The Year Sells His Sister's Hoohoo-Peener Pics For $200K

And AMI editor claims NO KNOWLEDGE.

Okay, Wonkers, grab those bonbons and settle in for your stories. It must be sweeps week, since we've got the Trash Twins and Jeff Bezos's Wandering Dick back in the rotation.

Back in February, The Daily Beast confirmed that Michael Sanchez was the National Enquirer's source for the leaked texts between Jeff Bezos and his sister Lauren Sanchez. You know, just in case anyone failed to work that out when Elkan Abramowitz, the lawyer for the magazine's parent company American Media (AMI), went on television and announced that the source was "well known to both Mr. Bezos and Miss Sanchez." Now The Wall Street Journal has gotten details of the contract, confirming that Sanchez did indeed sell a photo of his own sister's pink bits for $200,000. Stay classy, bro, we know you will!

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popular

More Like Devin MOO-MES, ARE WE RIGHT? Wonkagenda For Tues., March 19, 2019

Trump's money troubles, Elizabeth Warren's election plan, and Devin Nunes sues his cow. Your morning MOOOOS brief!

Morning Wonketariat! Here's some of the things we may be talking about today.

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Everywhere Else News

Wash Your Eyeballs Clean With New Zealand Kids Honoring Fallen Classmates With Haka

We're not crying, YOU'RE crying. OK, us too.


Students perform haka to pay tribute to classmates killed in Christchurch www.youtube.com

It is late in the day on what looks like another week of hell, so here is a video of some New Zealand teenagers who burst into a spontaneous "haka" chant in remembrance of two of their friends who were murdered by a white supremacist who expected his terrorism would start a race war. He failed, and the kids -- from schools all over Christchurch -- are wonderful.

This is now your open thread. If you want to comment, you'll need to click the headline!

[WaPo / Guardian on YouTube]

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Immigrants

ICE Has Held Grampa With Alzheimer's For 9 Months. Don't You Feel Safe?

What part of ILLEGAL doesn't he understand? Probably lots.

Another day, another dispatch from the New Cruelty: Immigration and Customs Enforcement has been holding Noé de la Cruz, an old man who has Alzheimer's disease and diabetes (and is in remission from cancer) in a detention center in Texas, pending the outcome of his request for asylum. His family -- his wife and daughter are citizens -- has requested he be released to their care, but nothing doing! ICE doesn't let dangerous old men loose into the community, because what if he disappears and takes some American's job, or tapes a bunch of women's mouths shut and drives them across the border, or starts a caravan and murders all of us in our sleep? We need a wall -- An anti-ALZHEIMER'S wall!

His daughter, Sandra de la Cruz, says she's worried her father, 72, isn't getting any treatment where he's imprisoned, ICE's Port Isabel "Service Processing Center" in Los Fresnos, Texas.

"He's going to get lost, and we don't have family over there who can take care of him," Sandra said. Speaking through tears, Sandra recounted instances where her father called "three, five, ten times a day" from the Port Isabel detention facility near Los Fresnos, Texas, asking the same questions over and over.

"He also says that he's getting into fights, but when we go to see him, he doesn't have bruises," Sandra said. "We think that the fights are happening in his mind."

(Some idiot somewhere: "So he's also violent, you say? Good thing he's in jail!")

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Russia

Putin's Latest Fascist Law Will Make Trump Jizz Himself SILLY

The good news is that Trump is too stupid and ineffective to ever make anything like this happen in America. MAYBE.

Time for a quick dispatch from Russia, where Donald Trump's handler Vladimir Putin just signed a law that would/will make Trump literally squeal with jealousy. Tell us, Bloomberg:

President Vladimir Putin signed laws punishing online media and individuals for spreading "fake news" or material that's considered insulting to Russian officials.

Prosecutors can now complain about online publications to the state communications watchdog, which has powers to block access to the websites if their owners fail to remove the material promptly. Publications found guilty of spreading "unreliable socially significant information" may face fines of as much as 1.5 million rubles ($23,000).

Individuals also face fines and up to 15 days in jail if they publish material online that expresses "clear disrespect for society, the state, the official state symbols of the Russian Federation, the Constitution of the Russian Federation and bodies exercising state power."

That's about what we'd expect from the guy who, in 2013, banned "gay propaganda" to minors, by which they meant being open and honest about the fact that gay people exist. (That law is not all that different from a bill that has often been introduced in the shithole totalitarian nation of ... um, Tennessee.)

So anyway, with the signing of this new bill, you can officially get in trouble in Russia -- we say "officially" because you could already get murdered by Putin's thugs for saying something mildly critical about the government or being gay or being a journalist who tells the truth -- if you say mean swears about Russian government officials (all of whom should go fuck themselves with a Matryoshka doll) or if you propagate "fake news," which in an authoritarian state means news that displeases Dear Leader. (Also Donald Trump's definition.)

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Russia

Oleg Deripaska Sues Stephen Mnuchin For Making Him Poor

He only has a few billion left! HOW WILL HE LIVE!

Pity the poor oligarchs! Won't someone please think of the Russian billionaires so cruelly impoverished by the spiteful caprice of the Trump administration's attack dogs in the Treasury Department? However will Oleg Deripaska even afford to maintain all his yachts and houses and jets when the American government cuts him off so brutishly from the international financial system? Thus he has been forced to sue Treasury Secretary Stephen Mnuchin for arbitrarily adding him to the sanctions list and forcing him to meager subsistence on canned caviar and lobster foraged from a suburban Moscow dumpster.

Or something.

Deripaska's lawsuit, filed Friday in DC, is a masterpiece of melodrama and pathos. Really, Tolstoy would blush.

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News

George And Kellyanne Conway Fighting Again, About How Her Boss Is Psychopath Who Will Kill Us All

And what did your husband say about YOUR boss today?

Uh oh, looks like George Conway, husband of Kellyanne, is going to be sleeping on the couch for another week, because they are having That Fight They Always Have, the one where he says her boss (the president) is certifiably mentally unstable, and she's like "nuh uh," and we guess she reminds him that if that so-called certifiably mentally unstable person wasn't president, then she wouldn't be making a government salary for going on Fox News and lying to the American people.

It started this weekend with Donald Trump's latest Twitter rampage, which is still going on, and which avid watchers of Trump's Twitter habits agree seems to suggest that he is real upset about something. Like, more than usual. The sort of upset he gets when Robert Mueller is about to arrest his son, maybe. You know, ALLEGEDLY.

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Class War

Elizabeth Warren Running For President OF NERDS!

The rent is too damn high!

Hey, while every media outlet is doing exactly the same stupid horse-race political coverage they said nobody should be doing, the actual candidates for the Democratic presidential nomination are busily putting forward policy proposals -- the things pundits and voters keep saying they want to know about, at least in between discussions of "likeability" and whether Chuck Todd thinks candidates are bipartisan enough. So hey, here is a cool housing policy idea from Elizabeth Warren, who's trying to out-nerd everyone else with a proposal to make housing more affordable and even redress some of the nation's terrible legacy of housing discrimination. What a weirdo!

Warren outlines her housing proposals here, and we like 'em. There are even linkies to studies supporting her proposals, yay for info geeks! She notes that, for grownup adults, where you live (more precisely, where you can afford to live) has enormous consequences.

Housing is not just the biggest expense for most American families — or the biggest purchase most Americans will make in their lifetimes. It also affects the jobs you can get, the schools your children can go to, and the kinds of communities you can live in. That's why it's so important that government gets housing policy right.

Problem is, the federal government has spent decades getting housing policy very very wrong, from building racial discrimination into housing policy for much of the 20th century, to letting the big banks screw over homeowners and taxpayers as well. And of course, not doing much of anything to address the crunch in affordable housing for low and middle-income people. How's this for some real class warfare, via the supposedly invisible hand of the market:

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