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Trump's Jesus Lady, Paula White, Wants Your Electric Bill Money

Paula White, Trump's personal Bible lady, wants your money. Not just some of your money, all of it. Every last dime. And if you don't give it to her, that will mean that you don't even like God at all and instead want to worship your utility provider.

This is a no-brainer for those of us who do not believe in God, or those who do not believe in Paula White, but a whole lot of people out there actually do.

In an in-depth Mother Jones profile on White, Stephanie Mencimer highlighted the conflict between White's position in the White House and her personal ministry and televangelism career, and the way that is complicated by the fact that churches that endorse political candidates can get into trouble with the IRS. It's even further complicated by the fact that White's gimmick is Prosperity Gospel, a flavor of evangelicalism in which preachers ask congregants to give them lots and lots of money in order to win "favors" from God and become rich themselves. It's quite the scam!

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Lev Parnas Maybe More F*cked. Who (Bill Barr) Will Save Rudy Giuliani Now????

Do us a favor real quick and remember everything we know about Bill Barr's Justice Department lately, including the fact that Barr has been personally intervening in cases related to Donald Trump, and has even been "micromanaging" certain cases at the usually crazy independent Southern District of New York (SDNY). Got all your knowledge about Barr's Justice Department and SDNY at the front of your brain?

Are you also remembering that Rudy Giuliani himself has been under criminal investigation by SDNY, but instead of a perp walk, we have learned recently that Giuliani has a secret shoe phone back channel to Bill Barr, so he can deliver all the absolute bullshit "evidence" against the Bidens he's been collecting from craven liars on his Ukraine vacations?

Did you read Liz's latest story about Bill Barr's ratfuckery at the DOJ for the benefit of Donald Trump's authoritarian pals in Turkey?

Good.

Now read this scoop from CNN, which is that already-indicted Rudy Giuliani pal Lev Parnas might end up with more indictments from SDNY:

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We Used To Give Migrant Kids Therapy To *Help Them*, Not Nail Them, Isn't That So Funny?

In an attempt to prevent immigrant kids from getting asylum, the government is going through notes taken in counseling sessions and picking out items that can be used against the kids, even though the counselors assured the kids the sessions would be confidential. What's worse, the practice may be technically legal, although obviously it's unethical as fuck. The government insists it's absolutely necessary to protect America, because when some kids discuss the traumas that led them to seek asylum in the US, they also say things that can be used to suggest they're dangerous thugs who might kill us all.

In the Washington Post, Hannah Dreier focuses on the ordeal of one young Honduran asylum-seeker, Kevin Euceda, who lived through hell and escaped an MS-13 group that wanted him to kill someone to prove his loyalty to the gang. In 2017, he crossed the Rio Grande with his older sister; she was 18, so was quickly deported. But Kevin, then 17, was placed in a youth shelter that contracted with the Office of Refugee Resettlement, which is responsible for housing minor immigrants until they're placed with sponsors (or, increasingly, until they're old enough to deport). By law, all detained kids are required to see a counselor within 72 hours of coming into the ORR system, under the 1997 settlement meant to protect detained kids. Haha, joke's on you, Kevin: Under Trump, those sessions were no longer confidential, although the counselor — a recent graduate doing work toward her professional license — didn't know her notes would be turned over to ICE, either.

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Medicare For All Would Save Money And Lives, Say Epidemiology Nerds At Yale

Every time we get to talking about Medicare For All in this country, one question pops up, over and over and over again — sure, it would be nice for everyone to have health care, but how are we going to pay for it?

If you are anything like me, you just scream, "Oh my god, it saves money! We will be paying less than we are paying now! Not more! Why will no one listen to me?" into the void forever. But, if you are like the good people at Yale's Center for Infectious Disease Modeling and Analysis, you prove it.

If you're not familiar with CIDMA, their jam is figuring out the best and most cost-effective means of implementing public heath policies and they do a lot of interesting studies on vaccines and stopping the spread of infectious diseases.

In a study published this weekend in The Lancet, titled "Improving the prognosis of health care in the USA," CIDMA found that Medicare For All would save us 13 percent a year on health costs and save the lives of more than 68,000 people.

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Class War

Why Does This Jesus Man Want Restaurants To Fail?

Yet another explanation for why you're not rich, you loser.

Twitter is a wonderful place where you can find cute animal videos and also complete idiots, like this thought from a guy called "Dave Ramsey," a bestselling writer of books on financial success. According to the wiki, Mr. Ramsey's books and radio show advocate "a fiscally disciplined approach to personal and household finances, including the strict management of debt, and often feature a Christian perspective."

We'd never heard of him before today, but here he is, explaining how to get out of debt:

If you're working on paying off debt, the only time you should see the inside of a restaurant is if you're working there.

Like a lot of common sense financial advice, it sounds very sensible and straightforward. And for most people, about as useful as the rightwing geniuses who explain that nobody would ever go bankrupt from medical bills if only they didn't waste their money on iPhones instead.

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Legal

CURSES! Bill Barr's Plot To Jail Ex-FBI Guy Andy McCabe FOILED AGAIN!

And Matt Gaetz and Lou Dobbs are losing their miiiiiinds!

The howler monkeys of wingnutistan spent the holiday weekend all up in their feelings about the Justice Department not doing LOCK HER UPS to former deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe. They were promised scalps, dammit, and now all they've got is a rapidly softening rage boner disappearing under a belly distended by decades of Hannity, Budweiser, and the BarcaLounger. SAD!

On Valentine's Day, the US Attorney's Office in DC sent McCabe's lawyers a love note acknowledging the obvious: that they aren't going to be charging McCabe with shit, so they've finally tapped out and closed the investigation.

"It is an absolute disgrace that they took two years and put my family through this experience for two years before they finally drew the obvious conclusion and one they could have drawn a long, long time ago," McCabe said on CNN, where he is a commentator. But for the MAGA nutbags, the real disgrace was that the DOJ didn't charge McCabe with something, anything.

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State/Local Politics

Meet Dennis, The Iowa GOP-er All Buttered Up About Boner Fraud. Dennis Is Weird.

Boner forgery, most foul!

Everyone, please meet Dennis Guth, pictured above with the porny mustache, who is just your typical run-of-the-mill Iowa Republican state senator who happens to want a record of which people in Iowa are official fans of the D. Stop laughing, this is a normal serious bill from a normal serious person.

Guth's bill, Senate File 2130, isn't just a directory where you can look up some hot piece o' Iowa ass to find out if they play on the samesies team. It is to protect marriage. Specifically, it would punish people for "fraudulent concealment" of their sexual orientation on a marriage license. In other words, if you are an Iowa Republican guy with a big mustache and you wanted to marry a lady, your marriage license would specifically have to say that you are a heterosexual man. But if years go by and your porn mustache turns gray and you get divorced because actually you were a closet case this whole time and now you're coming out, then you could be penalized for "fraudulent concealment" for purposes of child custody, and so on.

Now before you say something like "What in the fuck" or "We sure are glad Iowa doesn't have any other problems if they're worried about this," you should look at the text of the bill so you can make fun of it even more:

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Science

Maybe Trump's Budget Cuts Will Force Lazy Coronavirus Patients To Get Well

Pull yourself out of that hospital bed by your bootstraps.

Among the other terrible ideas in Donald Trump's proposed federal budget, the Great Man wants to slash budgets for the Centers for Disease Control and the National Institutes of Health, as well as for international health programs, because it's simply not America's job to keep you from getting sick, especially if you aren't even America. The administration has to pretend it's paying for those giant tax cuts, after all, and so it's proposing some belt-tightening, even as the new coronavirus, now officially called COVID-19, continues to spread. But don't worry! Administration flacks are happy to point out that as the Great Man slashes disease prevention and research budgets by billions of dollars, the White House does at least want to spend a few million bucks to react to new health emergencies, so that's something, at least. (No it isn't.)

The real good news is that there is pretty much zero chance that Democrats in the House will agree to the massive spending cuts, meaning we're likely to have another year of continuing resolutions to maintain funding at current levels, with maybe the occasional government shutdown threat if Trump decides that would be a good idea in an election year. So half a cheer for incompetence!

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Religion

Trump's Jesus Lady, Paula White, Wants Your Electric Bill Money

Okay, NOW WE'RE MAD.

Paula White, Trump's personal Bible lady, wants your money. Not just some of your money, all of it. Every last dime. And if you don't give it to her, that will mean that you don't even like God at all and instead want to worship your utility provider.

This is a no-brainer for those of us who do not believe in God, or those who do not believe in Paula White, but a whole lot of people out there actually do.

In an in-depth Mother Jones profile on White, Stephanie Mencimer highlighted the conflict between White's position in the White House and her personal ministry and televangelism career, and the way that is complicated by the fact that churches that endorse political candidates can get into trouble with the IRS. It's even further complicated by the fact that White's gimmick is Prosperity Gospel, a flavor of evangelicalism in which preachers ask congregants to give them lots and lots of money in order to win "favors" from God and become rich themselves. It's quite the scam!

Keep reading...
justice department

Lev Parnas Maybe More F*cked. Who (Bill Barr) Will Save Rudy Giuliani Now????

It's good to have cover-up artist friends in high places.

Do us a favor real quick and remember everything we know about Bill Barr's Justice Department lately, including the fact that Barr has been personally intervening in cases related to Donald Trump, and has even been "micromanaging" certain cases at the usually crazy independent Southern District of New York (SDNY). Got all your knowledge about Barr's Justice Department and SDNY at the front of your brain?

Are you also remembering that Rudy Giuliani himself has been under criminal investigation by SDNY, but instead of a perp walk, we have learned recently that Giuliani has a secret shoe phone back channel to Bill Barr, so he can deliver all the absolute bullshit "evidence" against the Bidens he's been collecting from craven liars on his Ukraine vacations?

Did you read Liz's latest story about Bill Barr's ratfuckery at the DOJ for the benefit of Donald Trump's authoritarian pals in Turkey?

Good.

Now read this scoop from CNN, which is that already-indicted Rudy Giuliani pal Lev Parnas might end up with more indictments from SDNY:

Keep reading...
Media/Entertainment

The Fantabulous Lies of One Kellyanne Conway

It's your Sunday show rundown!

It's been a while but this Sunday saw the return of counselor to the President and what would happen if Tomi Lahren drank from the wrong Grail, Kellyanne Conway.

youtu.be

Appearing on "Fox News Sunday," Conway was determined to make up for time lost away from the Sunday shows, filibustering Chris Wallace for all 12 minutes and 47 seconds of her time.

Wallace began by asking what Trump thinks of the Justice Department's decision to drop the investigation into former FBI official Andrew McCabe, and Conway sped through the bullshit like an eager stallion at the Kentucky Derby (Bowling Green Massacre, Never Forget):

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Trump

Bill Barr Ratf*cks DOJ ... No, This Is A New One! For Trump's Pal Turkey!

THE ROT IS NEVERENDING.

Bill Barr is the most dangerous man in DC. Maybe Trump is a demented aberration whose despotic demands result from a lethal cocktail of egomania and tertiary syphilis. But the attorney general, formerly known as a "serious person," insists that there is no law but the president, that the executive can defy both congressional and judicial oversight, and that he has the right to use the Justice Department to prosecute his enemies and to protect his friends. Which is such a gross insult to an independent legal system that former DOJ employees are slamming the fire alarm demanding Barr's resignation before he does any more damage to the department he leads.

This weekend, more than 1,100 former DOJ employees signed a letter demanding Barr's resignation and calling on current DOJ employees "to report future abuses to the Inspector General, the Office of Professional Responsibility, and Congress; to refuse to carry out directives that are inconsistent with their oaths of office; to withdraw from cases that involve such directives or other misconduct; and, if necessary, to resign and report publicly — in a manner consistent with professional ethics — to the American people the reasons for their resignation."

Donald Ayer, deputy attorney general under George H.W. Bush, authored an editorial demanding Barr's resignation or impeachment before his "root-and-branch attack on the core principles that have guided our justice system" turns us into "a banana republic where all are subject to the whims of a dictatorial president and his henchmen." Not to put too fine a point on it, the people who know how the DOJ is supposed to work are freakin the fuck out.

And every day more news comes out about Barr's assault on our independent legal system. CNN reported Saturday that, in response to persistent lobbying by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Trump ordered Barr to disappear the case against Turkey's Halkbank for money laundering and violating US sanctions on Iran.

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Immigrants

We Used To Give Migrant Kids Therapy To *Help Them*, Not Nail Them, Isn't That So Funny?

We're going to need a Truth Commission when this is all over.

In an attempt to prevent immigrant kids from getting asylum, the government is going through notes taken in counseling sessions and picking out items that can be used against the kids, even though the counselors assured the kids the sessions would be confidential. What's worse, the practice may be technically legal, although obviously it's unethical as fuck. The government insists it's absolutely necessary to protect America, because when some kids discuss the traumas that led them to seek asylum in the US, they also say things that can be used to suggest they're dangerous thugs who might kill us all.

In the Washington Post, Hannah Dreier focuses on the ordeal of one young Honduran asylum-seeker, Kevin Euceda, who lived through hell and escaped an MS-13 group that wanted him to kill someone to prove his loyalty to the gang. In 2017, he crossed the Rio Grande with his older sister; she was 18, so was quickly deported. But Kevin, then 17, was placed in a youth shelter that contracted with the Office of Refugee Resettlement, which is responsible for housing minor immigrants until they're placed with sponsors (or, increasingly, until they're old enough to deport). By law, all detained kids are required to see a counselor within 72 hours of coming into the ORR system, under the 1997 settlement meant to protect detained kids. Haha, joke's on you, Kevin: Under Trump, those sessions were no longer confidential, although the counselor — a recent graduate doing work toward her professional license — didn't know her notes would be turned over to ICE, either.

Keep reading...
Guns

Virginia Nice Time Streak Ends As 'Moderate' Dems Help Kill Assault Weapon Ban

Who'd have thought walking the streets with an AK-47 strapped to your chest would prove persuasive?

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam's push to make the state just a tad less lethal failed Monday when members of his own party shivved his proposal to ban the sale of assault weapons. Gun rights advocates cheered with profane glee when state senators voted to bury Northam's bill for a year. The state crime commission will presumably use that time to "study the issue." It's unclear how many more dead people and ruined lives you need to confirm that assault weapons are bad news.

Last May, 12 people were killed in a shooting massacre at a municipal building in Virginia Beach, Virginia. The same year, New Zealand banned military-style semiautomatic rifles and high capacity magazines less than a week after a horrific mass shooting in Christchurch left 50 people dead. This is not a compelling example of American exceptionalism. This nation is unable to seriously address gun violence, and it's probably because we take seriously people who parade around in public outfitted for war. This is somehow an exercise of their constitutional right to terrify and intimidate their fellow Americans. They consider any form of gun control morally comparable to Jim Crow laws (no, seriously, someone put that on a sign). They lack both an awareness of history and basic humanity.

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Media/Entertainment

Senator From 'Deliverance' Talking About 'Honky Tonk Woman' And Brain Damage, We Are So Confused

Or maybe HE is confuse.

Senator John Neely Kennedy, the thing what went to Oxford but who seems to want you to think he was raised by a brusque yet kind redneck alligator in the Louisiana bayou, went on the Sunday TV shows yesterday. And he said ...

Well, we're not quite sure what he said.

The question on "Face The Nation" was about whether it is appropriate for Donald Trump to turn the Justice Department into a vehicle for avenging his grievances, and specifically whether Trump should have tweet-whined about how unfair Roger Stone's recommended sentence was, immediately after which Attorney General Bill Barr very conveniently followed Trump's orders and issued a new sentence recommendation.

And Kennedy said:

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Science

Richard Dawkins And The Eugenics Argument That Literally No One Asked For

This is no way to live, Richard.

Yesterday, at 7:30 a.m. Greenwich Mean Time, evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins opened up Twitter, and for no discernible reason whatsoever launched a defense of eugenics that not a single person the whole wide world over had asked for. Well, not a defense of eugenics so much as a strange tirade about how believing that it would be bad for moral reasons shouldn't mean that people should assume it wouldn't "work."

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News

That Softie Mike Bloomberg Won't Make Rudy Giuliani Give Up Loving Stop-And-Frisk

Giuliani is still the worst living former New York City mayor.

Mike Bloomberg is running for president as a Democrat, which means he can't overtly embrace racism and racist policies. At the very least, he needs to apologize for all the times he did. He's a new man with a New Democrat attitude. Rudy Giuliani, however, spent eight years as New York City mayor kicking black people in the teeth, and when his two terms of racial terror were up, he passed down his steel-toed boots to Bloomberg. He even endorsed his then-fellow Republican. Now Bloomberg has denounced the infamous "stop-and-frisk" police tactic of forgetting black people are citizens, and Giuliani doesn't even know who Bloomberg is anymore.

Giuliani blasted Bloomberg's newfound glimmer of humanity during an appearance Sunday on "The Cats Roundtable with John Catsimatidis," which apparently exists.

GIULIANI: What is this stuff that [Bloomberg's] condemning stop-and-frisk? I did it for eight years. He did it for 12. I did 100 [thousand] stops. He did 600 [thousand].

Even in a city of more than 8 million, that's a lot of black and brown people to feel up so Broadway tourists can feel safe. Giuliani insists that Bloomberg loved "stop-and-frisk" as much as he did, and he's now trying to act like that friend of yours who claimed they never bought a Spice Girl record. (Those ladies sold 85 million worldwide. It wasn't just me!)

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Healthcare

Medicare For All Would Save Money And Lives, Say Epidemiology Nerds At Yale

13% less money than what we're paying now, and 68,000 lives

Every time we get to talking about Medicare For All in this country, one question pops up, over and over and over again — sure, it would be nice for everyone to have health care, but how are we going to pay for it?

If you are anything like me, you just scream, "Oh my god, it saves money! We will be paying less than we are paying now! Not more! Why will no one listen to me?" into the void forever. But, if you are like the good people at Yale's Center for Infectious Disease Modeling and Analysis, you prove it.

If you're not familiar with CIDMA, their jam is figuring out the best and most cost-effective means of implementing public heath policies and they do a lot of interesting studies on vaccines and stopping the spread of infectious diseases.

In a study published this weekend in The Lancet, titled "Improving the prognosis of health care in the USA," CIDMA found that Medicare For All would save us 13 percent a year on health costs and save the lives of more than 68,000 people.

Keep reading...
Saudi Arabia

Ivanka Trump Speechifies At Global Women's Forum Because Women Haven't Suffered Enough

We guess it's better than Melania.

Ivanka Trump, whose greatest single accomplishment is standing upright, went on a tour of the Mideast where she stared poignantly at random objects. She also took time out of her never busy schedule to give a speech Sunday to women entrepreneurs and regional leaders in Dubai. She praised such countries as Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates for their "significant reforms" in advancing women's rights. For instance, Saudi Arabia recently allowed women to get their own passports and leave the country without a male relative's permission, so ... yay!

Trump gave the keynote address at the two-day Global Women's Forum. She was qualified to do this because she is the president's daughter and a woman — often both at the same time!

TRUMP: I am delighted to be attending the Global Women's Forum Dubai to advance women's economic empowerment around the world and highlight the progress of the Women's Global Development and Prosperity Initiative. This initiative has impacted over 12 million women in its first year, well on its way towards our goal of economically empowering 50 million women by 2025.

The Women's Global Development and Prosperity Initiative is Trump's pet project. It's supposed to do great things for women while her father's administration works to roll back abortion rights. Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham and Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen have teamed up to have Trump's initiative written into law. The proposed legislation would establish an Office of Women's Empowerment at the State Department and ensure something survives the Trump administration beyond the flaming dumpster fire of our democracy.

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Trump

Rain, Bloomberg Wash Out Donald Trump's Daytona 500 Visit

Not even the elements wanted Trump there.

Aside from beating impeachment charges that would've removed a president in any functioning democracy, poor Donald Trump just can't catch a break. Trump devoted his Sunday to cavorting with the common man at the Daytona 500 in Florida. He even brought Melania, who obviously would've preferred to be anywhere else (and with anyone else). The president and first lady flew in from Mar-a-Lago on Air Force One for what he probably hoped would serve as a free campaign ad.

Trump was named grand marshal and gave one of his usual, awful rally-style speeches, but FOX — the broadcast network, not the fake news channel — cut away to commercial. Trump supporters online were offended that a commercial network ran commercials instead of the president's gibberish, which would've turned up later on YouTube for free anyway. One Twitter user raged that "commies owned the media," and that's why paid advertising bumped Trump.

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