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'Sick Journalism.' Wonkagenda For Monday, June 10, 2019

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


After a week of huffing and puffing about he'd tear the economy down, Trump backed off his threat to levy new taxes tariffs on Mexico. Trump first praised his own sudden and dramatic reversal of tariffs he'd threatened against Mexico, but then some nerds realized that it was the same deal he'd already struck with Mexico, and now he's mad his distraction didn't work and is calling the New York Times "sick journalism" for pointing it out. Mexican officials are even calling bullshit on Trump's latest shenanigans, since it made the concessions during negotiations with former DHS head Kirstjen Nielsen back in March. As if that wasn't enough, Wall Street's bean counters are worried Trump no longer has enough political capital to shove his NAFTA 2 scheme through Congress (as if he ever did).

Immigrants in the custody of the CBP at US hospitals are being treated like prisoners, doctors tell the New York Times. Border police have begun parking their vehicles at hospital entrances to spook patients, leaning on doctors to discharge patients into overcrowded baby jails, and preventing doctors from informing families about patients in critical condition.

Later today, John Dean, the former Nixon minion with a conscience and a criminal record, will head back to the Hill to tell the House Judiciary Committee about obstruction of justice and high crimes and misdemeanors. As expected, Trump shitposted upon hearing about Dean's appearance.

Tomorrow the House is expected to vote on contempt resolutions against AG Bill Barr and former White House counsel Don McGahn.

People are still thinking about that phone call John Dowd made to Mike Flynn's lawyer. For whatever reason, Robert Mueller didn't really dig into Dowd's barely coded language about a POSSIBLE presidential pardon, even if Trump was simultaneously shitposting that Flynn shouldn't snitch. This sounds like a job for a congressional investigation.

It's not just Wayne La Pierre and Ollie North who have ALLEGEDLY been fooling around with the NRA's money, NRA board members seems to have a funny money problem. As a result of all the double-dealing, NRA members are growing concerned that the brass might be screwing dues paying members out of their free-dumbs.

Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao has been curiously doling out mega millions in projects for constituents of her husband, Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. None of this is technically illegal, but then nobody has ever been dumb enough to be such a swamp monster before.

During a speech Saturday at South Carolina NAACP, 2020 Democratic candidate Sen. Kamala Harris said people calling her "a cop" can fuck off, arguing that it's not at all bad for a black or bi-racial woman to serve as a prosecutor. "There have been prosecutors that refused to seat black jurors," Harris said, "Refused to prosecute lynchings, disproportionately condemned young black men to death row, and looked the other way in the face of police brutality...It matters who is in those rooms. I knew I had to be in those rooms. We always have to be in those rooms, especially and even when there aren't many like us there."

Fox News talking heads are already peddling conspiracies about Joe Biden's health, so it's only a matter of time before Hannity starts photoshopping Biden's head onto Ali McGraw in the deathbed scene from Love Story.

Massive flooding throughout flyover country has some good 'ol boys rethinking inconvenient truths about climate change. Apparently beating people with the science stick isn't as effective as hiding in the attic and praying for Jesus to send the Cajun Navy.

If you want another reason to feel mad and stuff, read this story about how Alabama rape victims can lose custody of their children to their attacker since there's no law revoking parental rights for rapey assholes.

Crushing throngs of people packed the streets of Hong Kong over a proposed extradition law with mainland China. Government officials say only 240,000 people showed up, but organizers say it was over a million. Critics say the proposed bill would allow the Chinese government to prosecute political exiles who talk shit about Chinese emperor President Xi Jinping. This morning, Hong Kong's chief executive (an appointed position by China's ruling Communist party), Carrie Lam stated, "We were doing it, and we are still doing it, out of our clear conscience, and our commitment to Hong Kong," adding, "I have not received any instruction or mandate from Beijing to do this bill."

Sudanese people are protesting the ruling military junta's failure to hand control of the government back to civilians. With the military rounding up protesters, civilian leaders are telling people to stay home in an effort to grind the gears of government to a halt and force the junta to come to the negotiating table.

Trump's dipshit sons went to Ireland, bought a bunch of locals beer, then skipped out before paying their bar tab. The bar owner decided that the cheap bastard sons had no intention of paying the bill, so they billed Trump's golf course.

Ethics nerds aren't happy that Trump World was living it up on the taxpayers dime while Trump dicked around in Europe last week. Numerous administration officials posted photos of themselves to social media bragging about the glitz and glamour of Trump properties. Politico reports that the staffers treating their European vacation as an infomercial was the point, with one former official, "Are you kidding me? posting about Trump's golf course? They may get bonuses for doing that."

Jared Kushner has a secret real estate company based in the Cayman Islands that's been hauling in oodles of Ameros for Not American investors. The only conflict of interest here is some nosey reporters discovered Jared's secret side hustle.

The oak tree planted on the White House grounds by Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron to symbolize friendship has died. Isn't it ironic?

According to WaPo's Fact Checker, Trump has made about 10,800 "false or misleading statements" during his almost 900 days in office. For those keeping score at home, that's about 12 a day, although since April it's up to 16 a day.

The New York Times has a long, boring profile on AG Bill Barr that starts by portraying him as Alex P. Keaton at a kegger, and goes on to explain why he thinks the president is a god and Nixon did nothing wrong.

ThinkProgress is in real trouble thanks to declining revenues and (as usual) Facebook. Internal documents show the outlet is hemorrhaging money primarily from a lack of donations and web traffic. It's been an open secret among staffers that they might not have jobs soon, but low morale and questionable leadership decisions are only making things worse.

John Oliver 'splainered the Equal Rights Amendment, why Phyllis Schlafly was a righteous proto-troll, and how we're only ONE STATE AWAY from guaranteeing the Constitution treats people equally, regardless of what's going on between their legs.

Equal Rights Amendment: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO) www.youtube.com


And here's your morning Nice Time: BABY GOATS!

The Running of the Goats Video- All 90! www.youtube.com


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Dominic Gwinn

Dominic is a broke journalist in Chicago. You can find him in a dirty bar talking to weirdos, or in a gutter taking photos.

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