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


A new Wall Street Journal report claims Paul Manafort was considering a plea agreement ahead of his second trial, but the talks fell apart and Mueller walked away just as Manafort was convicted of trying to hide all the Ukrainian blood money.

House Republicans are setting their sights on Bruce Ohr, one of the last the Justice Department officials who could serve as a witness to Trump's Russian fuckery. Ohr's the guy who spearheaded investigations into the Russian mob over the last few decades.

Lanny Davis admits that he was a source for that CNN story suggesting Trump knew about the Trump Tower meeting with Russian creepos. Davis has apologized for pulling a Giuliani Davis and lying to people.

Giuliani is Giuliani-ing (again) and says that he hasn't heard from Robert Mueller in weeks.

A super old and obscure court case could keep the Mueller report under wraps from even Congress, let alone the public, on the grounds that courts don't have the right to disclose secret grand jury reports to the public. WHOA,, if true!

This morning Lindsey Graham threw Jeff Sessions under the bus and said that his "relationship is beyond repair" with Trump. Melania could say the same.

Trump apparently Googled himself at 3AM and immediately started shitposting that Google was "rigged" to suppress conservative voices and show "bad" stories him.

Seth Frotman, the top US official in charge of student loans, quit in protest of the Trump administration's moves to protect fat cat lenders and for-profit schools over broke students and graduates. In a damning letter to CFPB head Mick Mulvaney, Frotman writes, "The damage you have done to the bureau betrays these families and sacrifices the financial futures of millions of Americans in communities across the country."

A GSA IG report has found that Donald Trump killed plans to move the ancient FBI headquarters across the street from his DC trash palace to the suburbs. The report also found that Trump's GSA totally fucked up the math (shocker) in its report to Congress, grossly underestimating the cost of keeping the FBI HQ in DC.

Tenant activists are accusing Jared Kushner's family business and Michael Cohen of attempting to evict rent-controlled tenants with Trump-style fuckery so that they could gentrify the area and jack up the rent.

TERRIBLE TIMES: The Trump administration is attempting to absolve Uncle Sam from the responsibilities involved with detaining immigrant children as defined by the Flores agreement so that it can go back to locking Mexican kids in baby jails.

ICYMI: A Muslim woman was forced to show TSA agents her bloodied menstrual pad. A Harvard graduate student, she tells HuffPo and the ACLU that agents shielded their names and badge numbers and threatened her with arrest.

Mollie Tibbetts was laid to rest and her dad had a stunning rebuke to the racists and trolls attempting to use his daughter's death for their own anti-immigrant aims.

After ordering the White House and other federal buildings to keep flags at full staff all day, Trump eventually caved to pressure from veterans groups nagging him to lower the damn flag to half staff and honor Sen. McCain, and released a pathetic four sentence statement that he clearly didn't write. This morning Ashley Parker writes in WaPo that Trump has become "President Non Grata" for throwing tantrums instead of performing even the most basic and ceremonial duties.

FUN FACT: Paul Manafort BEGGED John McCain to be a part of the 2008 RNC, but McCain told him to take a flying fuck at a Soviet doughnut after noticing his hands were stained from Not American blood money.

Iowa Republican Sen. Joni Ernst is lacing up her bread bags and marching down to the courthouse for a divorce.

A three-judge panel announced that North Carolina's congressional districts are definitely gerrymandered in favor of Republicans, and may need to be redrawn before the November elections. Isn't it almost September already? YUP.

Here's a quick breakdown of all the important primary races today!

Arizona Republican Senate candidate "Chemtrail" Kelli Ward tweeted, "Political Correctness is like a cancer," yesterday morning as everyone was honoring the late Sen. McCain. Last night, Fox News reported that "Chemtrail" Kelli Ward sort of apologized for being a horrifically inconsiderate bitch, allowing racist ex-con and former sheriff Joe Arpaio to look sane by comparison.

We can safely say that Kris Kobach is a vile monster alienating Republicans in Kansas after Gov. Jeff Colyer's campaign manager, Steve Baccus, jumped ship and became the co-chair of independent candidate Greg Orman.

According to a new report, Baylor University officials tried to stifle dissent in sexual assault support groups with a mole in order to keep the university from looking bad ahead of nearly a dozen Title IX lawsuits.

French President Emmanuel Macron told ambassadors that "Europe can no longer entrust its security to the United states," and that Europeans must begin thinking of their own interests in places like Iran and Syria. Mon Dieu!

Fox News news is already blaming video games for the mass shooting in Jacksonville this weekend. Yesterday Florida AG and complete fucking idiot Pam Bondi went on Fox & Friends to suggest that Minecraft (literally Lego for computers) and cellphones were dangerous. Later, Fox talking heads suggested that video games were like cigarettes ... then said with a straight face that when things hurt children, we have to regulate them.

Following the massacre at Parkland, Bloomberg reporter Shahien Nasiripour reported that Wells Fargo was the "preferred financier for the US gun industry." Bloomberg has now reassigned Nasiripour because they're a bunch of spineless pussies.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette is cutting its production schedule to five days a week. In response, the head of the local reporters union tweeted that the paper cares more about money and dumping jobs than "Pittsburgh, its people, [or] it's 232 years" of service. SOLIDARITY!

Big telecoms are firing off bogus robocalls trying to convince Californians not to support Senate Bill 822 (AKA net neutrality).

FCC Chairman and piece of shit Ajit Pai says that an internal IG report found no funny businesses with the now-scuttled merger of Sinclair Broadcasting and Tribune Media, calling reports of his biased moves "absurd."

Oh look, everyone! A secret phone call about Sinclair between Jared Kushner and FCC Chair (and piece of shit) Ajit Pai! I wonder what they were talking about?

Rob Kulin, a NASA astronaut candidate recruited out of SpaceX, suddenly dropped out of the space program for "personal reasons." I wouldn't want to be a part of the Space Farce either...

"Weird" Al Yankovic got a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and asked people not to use a pickaxe on his star "unless, at some point in the future, I do something unfathomably monstrous and evil."

ICYMI: Here's a suggestive picture of Donald Trump attempting to color an American flag that has people wondering if he actually knows what the flag looks like. Is he...copying that kid's paper?

And here's your morning Nice Time! Tian Tian the giant panda!

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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 lying in a gutter taking photos.

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There could still be a partial shutdown of the government starting Saturday if Congress doesn't pass a budget bill in time, but at least Donald Trump has caved, yet again, on what last week he insisted was absolutely completely necessary to keep the government open. You might remember it -- dude said he'd be PROUD to shut down the government and take credit for it if he didn't get $5 billion to build the thing. Today, he's more like MEH, what wall, he can fund it some other way, maybe, honestly, who cares, it's time for golf, isn't it? Whatever his thinking, Trump has dropped the wall-funding ultimatum, though there's still no budget deal, because congressional Democrats aren't about to take Mitch McConnell's crappy alternative offer, either.

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December 18. One week before Christmas. In a normal and just and sane world, the news cycle would be dying and we'd be decking the halls and trying to find dumb things to write about just to make YOU DINGBATS happy. (Christmas week in 2015 we wrote about an idiot rightwing Christian extremist named Bryan Fischer, who thinks dinosaurs in the Bible were really just VERY OLD GRANDMA BIBLE LIZARDS.) But alas, Barack Obama is no longer president, so the shitshow continues.

Donald Trump is, of course, about to head off on vacation, from his ... paid vacation in Washington. Basically he's just transferring his voluminous ass to a different gold-plated toilet so he can do his Twitter-shits in a sunnier climate. Regardless, Gabe Sherman reports that the White House is on edge, because OH SHIT, PRESIDENT TINKLE SMELLS WILL BE WITHOUT AN ADULT CHAPERONE FOR TWO WEEKS, THIS IS VERY, VERY BAD.

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