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TRUST FALL! Wonkagenda For Fri., Sept. 6, 2019

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


While people in the Carolinas were being battered by Hurricane Dorian throughout the afternoon, Trump continued bitching and shitposting about Alabama. The storm has started to weaken as it continues to follow a slow, northerly track up the US coastline, triggering tornadoes, flooding, and leaving 250,000 people in the dark. Relief efforts in the Bahamas have stepped up as the US government readies 50,000 lbs. of medical equipment, but over at the White House Trump is still screaming that Alabama was going to get a piece of that hurricane action. Yesterday Trump continued shitposting outdated weather maps and refusing to admit he doctored official government documents in order to avoid admitting he's a fucking idiot, going so far as to release a statement from homeland security and counterterrorism adviser Rear Adm. Peter Brown, backing Trump's claims. When that didn't work, Trump summoned Fox News's senior White House correspondent John Roberts to the Oval Office, according to CNN, to bitch and moan about Roberts saying Alabama was never in any danger.

Behind the scenes, NPR reports current and former US officials are worried that Chinese relief efforts in the Bahamas are part of a coordinated attempt to gain a foothold in the region. It's kind of like the Cuban Missile Crisis with sketchy internet routers instead of nuclear missiles. At least this time we're already in a trade war.

The White House is expected to drop an excuse for a gun control plan soon(ish), but nobody on the Hill thinks Trump will actually follow through with it. Politico reports Trump's latest scheme involves expediting the death penalty for mass shooters, and releasing sealed records of juvenile crimers to the background-check database. Wonks note that Trump's hotdog-fisted approach to gun violence hinges on a a number of bills that already failed when they were introduced in Congress, and that Trump has no timetable to announce his public support (or lack thereof) for any gun control measure. Wouldn't want to upset the gun fetishists or the NRA in an election year, would we?

The $11 trillion mortgage market might be able to run around all willy nilly again after the administration announced plans to cut Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac free. The mortgage giants have been under government control since the 2008 financial crisis. The Treasury Department hasn't released all the details yet, but it's hoping Congress will charter new companies to compete with the two largest housing lenders to encourage competition. The move is widely expected to bolster the 2020 campaigns of people like Elizabeth Warren who think Uncle Sam should keep the reins on bucking bull markets.

The nonpartisan Government Accountability Office says the Interior Department broke the law when it started shuffling around money during Trump's shutdown in order to clean up the overflowing port-a-shitters and trash cans.

When Democrats head back to the Hill next week, they're expected to begin voting on a(nother) stop-gap resolution in order to keep the government from shutting down (again). Once again Senate Republicans are the ones holding up the final spending bills because they're too chickenshit to send Trump something that might cause a tantrum, like a lack of funding for his goddamn WALL.

Officials are investigating whether someone stole more than $100,000 from the reelection campaign of Ohio Republican Rep. Steve Chabot. Swamp monsters are feigning ignorance and clutching their pearls while pointing fingers at Chabot's campaign treasurer, telling Roll Call "Unfortunately, the misappropriation of funds by some campaign treasurers has been far too common an occurrence over the years." So was it ... self-Chabotage? Chabot's district leans Republican, but we're still a long way from 2020 and anything can happen!

Early voting and campaigning in the special elections in the North Carolina's 3rd and 9th congressional districts have less than a week to go. Political wizards are wondering if Dorian will have an effect on current projections showing Democrat Dan McCready leading ahead of Republican state Rep. Dan Bishop, who's so afraid of trans people in the loo that he pisses in the bushes. We assume.

Super rich guy and garbage coffee enthusiast Howard Schultz has announced #HesNOTrunning in a three-page letter to supporters released early this morning. Schultz whines that moderate voters, whom he considered the ace of bases, would never see his sign in their yards as they'd, "largely tuned out of political life." [Letter]

Tom LoBianco reports for Yahoo that Trump World has considered kicking Mike Pence off the 2020 ticket. LoBianco gossips that JarVanka have engaged in a whisper campaign to get a woman -- who is certainly not Nikki Haley! -- and have kicked Pence's political team to the curb. Trump's team has reportedly been forcing Pence and his minions into "loyalty tests," going so far as to secretly poll 14 states for favorables on Trump and Pence. Expect Pence to respond by affixing his lips even more firmly to the Great Man's tushy.

MEANWHILE, Politico reports Trump's hostile takeover of the Republican Party is almost complete as it seeks to nuke primaries and caucuses in South Carolina, Nevada, Arizona, and Kansas. Minions are worried that Never Trumpers running kamikaze campaigns could embarrass the boss, so they've been rigging the election by installing loyalists inside state party apparatuses. Statements from party bosses (provided by the Trump campaign, natch) say that this will save oodles of Ameros, adding that incumbent presidents cancel primaries and caucuses all the time.

Axios gossips that Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu is nervous that Trump may walk away from his "maximum pressure" campaign with Iran, after Trump said he would consider meeting with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani to discuss a deal to "denuke." Yesterday Iran announced that it was blowing up more of the 2015 JCPOA and would again begin researching and developing nuclear material.

The administration admits it actually offered to pay $1 million to the captain of the Iranian oil tanker Adrian Darya 1, (AKA: Grace 1) so the USA could seize the ship. After the captain refused the State Department's legit sounding email that literally began with "I am writing with good news," the US slapped sanctions and a warrant on the the ship, accusing it of trying to bring oil to Syria (which is probably true, but still). The same ship was impounded by the British earlier this summer in response to Iran's seizure of a British vessel. In a tweet, Iran's Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said the administration's moves amount to "blackmail," and that this was "becoming a pattern." Please! It's bribery. Blackmail is totally different.

Jason Greenblatt, the former Trump World business lawyer who's been doing Jared Kushner's homework on peace in the Middle East, has quit. Nobody knows anything about Jared's super secret plan to make Israel and Palestine set aside a thousand years of deep religious and cultural differences, but swamp creatures think the whole thing will be a handjob for Netanyahu.

A Florida man broke into a home and began cooking breakfast, then told the astonished resident to "go back to sleep."

The Daily Show's Trevor Noah took a moment to 'splain the crisis burning up the lungs of Mother Earth, and how Brazil's "fire fighters" are literally just kicking shit around.

Fires Ravage the Amazon | The Daily Show youtu.be


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

Primate Playmates - Baby Siamang Befriends Young Orangutan 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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