Nationalist Trump. Wonkagenda For Wed., Oct. 24, 2018
Morning Wonketariat! Here's some of the things we may be talking about today.
The US has decided to punish the people responsible for the ALLEGEDLY state-sanctioned murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi by revoking the visas of the Saudi aides and officials already imprisoned in Saudi Arabia.
Trump told a press gaggle that Khashoggi's killing was "the worst cover-up" in history, and framed Khashoggi's murder as a "bad original concept" that was "carried out poorly." Trump called it a "bad deal," adding, "whoever thought of that idea, I think, is in big trouble."
Because of the Trump administration's refusal to punish the Saudis, Arab leaders are worried this will embolden tyrants in the Middle East, like the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, to act with impunity against any religious or political criticisms.
In a new interview with the WSJ, Trump trashed his own Fed chairman, Jerome Powell (again), for raising interest rates in an attempt to fight rising inflation and rickety markets. Trump said, "I'm very unhappy with the Fed because Obama had zero interest rates." Trump also criticized people who think he is losing his trade war by saying, "We don't even have tariffs. I'm using tariffs to negotiate." (I don't even ... What?) Other nonsensical ramblings included Michael Cohen's guilty plea, which Trump said has something "to do with the taxi industry or something, and financing."
Trump says he's a nationalist, not a white nationalist, because he just happens to love white people and freedom more than brown people from "shithole countries."
Republicans' closed door grilling of Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein over his "joke" has been suddenly postponed after the committee chairman realized there wouldn't be enough time to throw a tantrum.
Jeff Sessions and Noel Francisco are trying to bypass the usual court process and take issues straight to the Supreme Court where it's more likely they can ram through something of dubious legality instead of dealing with all lower appellate courts.
Because Trump runs his mouth so much, rank and file Republicans and officials keep scrambling to make Trump's idiotic decrees a reality, according to a new story by WaPo. The way it works is Trump tweets random crap, and then everyone has to spend the rest of the day making it true. SAD.
House Ways and Means Committee Chair Rep. Kevin Brady says he'll work with the Trump administration to pass some kind of new Trump tax cut "over the coming weeks" after Trump said he wanted another "middle-class" tax cut of 10 percent. Apparently, "middle-class" is the new name for the super rich.
Cory Booker wants to give poor kids $50,000 "opportunity accounts" to give them a leg up in the world and skirt around the decades of systemic racial discrimination that's marginalized black families. #HesRunning.
Rolling Stone got its hands on an audiotape of Georgia Republican Secretary of State and gubernatorial nominee Brian Kemp saying that Republicans should be concerned about all the black people in Georgia exercising their right to vote, "which they totally can." During a debate last night with the Democratic nominee, Stacey Abrams, Kemp defended his record kicking thousands of black voters off the rolls, and refused to recuse himself in the event of a recount.
In an effort to stop growing calls to expand the social safety net and create universal healthcare, Trump's White House released a report criticizing socialism and bitching out Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren. After people began calling the report "scatterbrained," the White House doubled down with an 11 point press release that reiterated its own faulty data.
The Trump 2020 campaign may be the biggest spender in digital ad dollars right now, but the polarization of Palo Alto has Trump's resident neckbeard, Brad Parscale, building a database of cellphone numbers to push text messages to his minions as Facebook and Google ban the kind of hate speech that's at the center of Trump's election strategy. Now all they have to do is convince old people to read text messages.
It's not just Trump, political campaigns across the country are turning to text messages as a way to engage voters since, technically, it's legal. People are now complaining to Trump's FCC, but it's unlikely they'll do anything to hurt Trump's new 2020 strategy.
A new complaint to the FEC claims Missouri Republican Senate nominee Josh Hawley has been illegally coordinating with the NRA to push ads. An NRA spox responded by shooting off their mouth about liberals who hate freedom.
Civil rights and conservative groups are lawyering up across the country in expectation of voter fuckery. Don't be surprised if you see a well-dressed big ball of violence at your polling place on election day.
A white supremacist group out of Idaho is making MORE racist robocalls in Florida against Democratic gubernatorial nominee Andrew Gillum, and this time they're going after the JOOOOS and making fun of universal healthcare. The calls start with a minstrel-voiced "Gillum" saying, "it was the Jews who owned the slave trade," and "if you make me, Andrew Gillum, the governor, every peoples that be ailin' will get all the chicken feets they need." [Clip]
Illinois Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner was super worried that recent outbreaks of Legionnaires Disease at old folks homes could turn into another Flint, Michigan, after a new investigation revealed Rauner's administration purposely waited weeks and months before informing residents that people were dying. Internal emails reveal Rauner's office was paranoid that administration officials could be held legally accountable if they didn't act quickly, just like Flint.
A federal judge will let the people of Chicago offer public comments on a proposed consent decree to govern Chicago police reforms today and tomorrow, from 9:30AM to 3:00PM. Anyone wishing to give CPD a piece of their mind is asked to show up early as hell, keep their remarks under five minutes, and use as little foul language as possible.
As John Bolton dug the US into a new Cold War during yesterday's meeting with Vladimir Putin, Putin asked if the "eagle picked all the olives" off the US seal and "only has arrows left." Bolton responded by saying, "Hopefully I will have some answers for you, but I didn't bring any olives." Following that, Putin quipped, "That's what I thought."
Arizona Republican Sen. Jeff Flake has been running around TV land whipping himself, and yesterday went on The View to have a good cry and admit that he's not sure if he believes survivors, OR if he believes Justice Rapey McPrivilege. #HesRunning
Megyn Kelly went on TV and wondered why blackface was a bad idea for a Halloween costume, and several hours later she was apologizing (to her colleagues) for saying something ignorant and racist (AGAIN). Nobody knows the troubles Megyn Kelly has seen, y'all.
White nationalist Richard Spencer is getting a divorce from his wife and court records accuse Spencer of being a horrifying garbage monster who suffers from "adult temper tantrums." There are also multiple alleged incidents of physical abuse, including while Spencer's wife was pregnant.
Robyn is not happy about a chapstick company that wants you to pay $26 dollars to put your sign on your lips.
Yahoo has finally given up fighting a lawsuit from people who held it responsible for a massive 2013-2014 data breach. Rather than keep arguing about how it hid the breach, Yahoo will cough up $50 million in damages, $35 million in legal fees, and pay for two years of credit monitoring service.
Amazon has been marketing its facial recognition tech to multiple government authorities, and over the summer it pitched its "Rekognition Video tagging/analysis" to ICE officials as a way to track bad hombres.
Anonymous officials from Facebook and Twitter tell Bloomberg there's no evidence of Chinese election fuckery. Imagine that!
US Cyber Command has started reaching out and touching all the Russians they know are trying to screw with our elections. CyberCOM isn't exactly doing much, they're just letting them know there's someone out there who cares.
Julian Assange has finally worn out his welcome in Ecuador's UK embassy. This morning the Ecuador's Foreign Minister José Valencia said the government will no longer pay for his laundry or intervene on his behalf with the UK.
And here's your morning Nice Time! 360 Degrees of polar adventure time with photo journalist Paul Nicklen!
POLAR OBSESSION 360 | National Geographicwww.youtube.com
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Dominic is a broke journalist in Chicago. You can find him in a dirty bar talking to weirdos, or in a gutter taking photos.