He wants MORE rate cuts and he wants them NOW!!!
Call it the Fire Alarm Presidency. Every day for the past 31 years -- errr, months -- Donald Trump has been breaking that glass and insisting that the normal rules don't apply because OH MY GOD, CAN'T YOU HEAR THOSE SIRENS BLARING? He had to close the border to Muslims because it was an emergency. He had to impose steel tariffs on our allies because what if a war breaks out and we don't have enough steel plants to build tanks, it's an emergency (wink, wink). He needs to build concentration camps on our southern border because starving, terrorized people are begging to be let in, and this too is an emergency. When Congress refused to fund his pointless border wall, he just declared an emergency and raided military funds to do it anyway. And on and on and on.
So too with the economy, where Donald Trump would prefer to throw the nation's entire reserve supply of rocket fuel into the economic engine and watch it burn, but finds his plans thwarted by that ungrateful bastard he appointed Lord High Fuel Attendant at the Federal Reserve.
Ted Cruz, Rand Paul Want To F*ck Grandma Millie In The Ass, We Mean Give 'Her' A Tax Cut Without Even A Vote
This is, how you say, rich.
A group of Republican senators led by Ted Cruz sent a letter to Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin yesterday asking the Trump administration to please please cut taxes on the very richest Americans one more time before the 2020 election. And to do it through an administrative rule change, because there's no chance in hell another tax cut for the rich could pass in Congress. Not that the letter actually said any of that; instead, the letter claimed the change to taxes on capital gains would help out "ordinary Americans," because all the ordinary Americans these assholes know have stocks, bonds, and other financial toys subject to the capital gains tax. (The one type of investment in stocks many Americans do have -- retirement funds like IRAs or 401Ks -- aren't subject to capital gains taxes at all.)
Mick Mulvaney and Rick Scott, you are the Sunday Show Rundown!
Donald Trump decided to use Saturday morning's overdone steak morning constipation tweets to racially insult Rep. Elijah Cummings and for good measure the entire city of Baltimore:
....As proven last week during a Congressional tour, the Border is clean, efficient & well run, just very crowded. Cumming District is a disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess. If he spent more time in Baltimore, maybe he could help clean up this very dangerous & filthy place
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 27, 2019
Which means evil Harry Potter doppelgänger and acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney made dual appearances on CBS' “Face The Nation" and “Fox News Sunday" to defend the real victims: The Border Patrol agents running the
concentration camps family separation depots! On CBS's Face The Nation:
MULVANEY: To push back against what the President sees as inaccuracies, lies, about what Mr. Cummings said this week in the Oversight Committee about the border. If you go on the internet you can find the exchange where Elijah Cummings said that children were-- were sit-- sitting in their own feces at the border. That's wrong, in fact, it's misleadingly wrong. It-- it's the type of thing that really breaks down a civilized debate about how to address the-- the crisis at the border. And the President didn't like it. Does the President speak hyperbolically? Absolutely. Have we seen this type of-- of reaction from him before? Yes. And you will again because he pushes back. He fights back when he feels like he's attacked and what-- what Mr. Cummings said this week was wrong.
Yeah, we're real broke up about it.
You guys, it's not nice to laugh at other people's misery. Divorce is a very serious matter, even when it's Rudy Giuliani and his third wife trying to consciously uncouple while screaming at each other in the country club gift shop. So let's be be respectful, okay?
AHAHAHAHAHAHA! JUST KIDDING! Look at these assholes right here!
The Daily Beast reports:
"There was an issue at one of the clubs last week," Lisa Zeiderman, one of Giuliani's attorneys, previously told [Justice Michael] Katz. "We're going to ask that Ms. Giuliani just keep her distance from Mr. Giuliani when they're at clubs together and their children, as well, and not take photographs, because that's what was happening last weekend, I'm advised, at one of the clubs."
"He just wants to be left alone," Zeiderman had said.
One of Judith's lawyers had responded that Giuliani was just embarrassed to be spotted spending money on his purported girlfriend's daughter. (Giuliani denied this after that hearing.)
[Judith's lawyer Bernard] Clair had told Katz that "she went into the gift shop at the club. She saw Mr. Giuliani. He got anxious and yelled at her."
"I am tired of hearing about Mr. Giuliani's personal life," Katz had remarked, later saying, "Whoever is in the room first is allowed to stay in the room."
The guy who announced his divorce from his second wife in a press conference would like Judith Nathan Giuliani, the woman who required a separate seat on the campaign plane for her Louis Vuitton handbag, to show some fuckin' class!
Unless Fox News tells Trump to turn around and veto the actual bill. But that would never happen.
Negotiators from Congress and the White House reached an agreement yesterday on a deal to raise spending limits for two years, preventing automatic cuts and a probable government shutdown that would have been triggered in October without a deal. The agreement would also raise the debt limit for two years, preventing the possibility of an economic disaster if the US defaulted on its national debt.
Now all we need to keep the government running is for the House and Senate to pass actual legislation, and for Donald Trump to sign it. In other words, depending on how angry Trump is when the eventual bill hits his desk, we could still be fucked, hooray! Oh, yes, and then at some point Congress will have to pass actual spending bills -- this deal is simply the umbrella under which all that spending can happen, without automatic cuts passed by previous Republican deficit hawks.
Yr Dok Zoom is pretty sure the first time he ever heard of Harvard professor Elizabeth Warren was her 2007 interview on Fresh Air, after she testified before the Senate Banking Committee about all the tricks credit card companies use to extract extra revenue out of customers -- like changing payment due dates with very little notice, to rack up late fees. We remember her mentioning she'd had her contract law students try to make sense of the long, fine-print terms and conditions of credit card contracts, and if Harvard Law students struggled to make sense of 'em, how was the average customer supposed to? She got famous later, after Jon Stewart had her on the "Daily Show." But I'll never forget how clearly she explained the ways very smart financial execs with very smart lawyers managed to rig the smallest details to their advantage. Warren has made a career of pointing out how the very rich have been writing America's rules since the Reagan years.
I felt something like that come-to-Populist Jesus moment reading Warren's newly released plan to bring Wall Street to heel: It's about high finance and low motives, and succinctly explains, with a load of links to studies and background reading, why running the US government for the advantage of the financial sector is terrible for American people -- and for that matter, terrible for the US economy. Take 20 minutes to read it and you'll say, well shit, that's not right. That's not fair.
Fortunately, it can be fixed, by President Warren, or any Democrat who adopts Warren's plan. All we need to do is slay a few dragons.
Trump's on the job! What's the worst that could happen?
Donald Trump, our fearless leader, is going to fix the homeless crisis. Thank Putin he's in charge now because we've waited forever for someone to finally do something. Trump and Fox News host Tucker Carlson, a true brain trust, discussed the matter yesterday during an interview in Japan.
CARLSON: You've come to where we are now, Osaka or Tokyo, and the cities are clean. There's no graffiti. No one going to bathroom on the street. You don't see junkies.
TRUMP: It's very nice, isn't it?
Carlson and Trump had just finished whining about how Google, Facebook, and Twitter work "against" the fake president. Maybe Trump should "take action"? Japan's current president has been cracking down on the press so it's a little concerning to see Trump extending so much praise to the nation. It's certainly not because of Japan's strict gun control laws.
But major Japanese cities are clean and tidy. Who wouldn't like that? Carlson went on to say that US cities such as New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco have "major" problems with "filth." We don't think he's talking about the New York garbage strike of 2006. Is he really using dehumanizing Nazi speak to discuss the homeless? Trump's response was even weirder.
TRUMP: It's a phenomena that started two years ago.
Trump is literally from New York City.
Some People Think Ivanka Trump Is Awesome And Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Isn't, Which Is Why You Shouldn't Care What People Think
People, they are dumb as fuck!
The French government posted a video this weekend of Ivanka Trump embarrassing herself in front of world leaders at the G20 summit in Osaka, Japan. It was worse than when George H.W. Bush vomited on the Japanese prime minister's lap, because no one actually elected Ivanka to puke stupidity on the global stage.
Sweet Christ. Ivanka is so pathetic we'd almost feel sorry for her if she wasn't a complicit member of a crime family. Professionals who study body language or anyone who's attended a party in their lives can see how awkward this is. It's like "the idiot at a dinner party with New York intellectuals scene" from every Woody Allen film. Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau, UK prime minister Theresa May, French president Emmanuel Macron, and IMF chairwoman Christine Lagarde -- serious human beings -- are trying to have a serious conversation when the grifter princess talk blocks them to Lagarde's obvious disgust. This is what she had to contribute:
IVANKA: And in terms of the defense side, the whole, uh, ecosystem, it's been very male dominant, so...
Oh, she was so proud of that sentence she almost finished. Her mom is going to frame that sentence and hang it on her refrigerator.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez correctly observed that Ivanka is barely qualified to stand upright let alone represent the United States at an economic summit. It's bad enough Donald Trump is there. He could at least spring for some professional diplomats. Conservatives around the world rushed to defend the president's likely 2020 running mate from the mean Congress lady.
Talking to you, Jerry Falwell Jr. and ... internet furniture retailer Wayfair? Yeah. Them.
Theologian Russell Moore expressed concern like a common human being yesterday about the appalling conditions of Donald Trump's kiddie jails. Evangelical hack Jerry Falwell Jr. didn't appreciate Moore's negative TripAdvisor review and scorched him on Twitter.
This was bizarre even for Falwell, the born-again Trump disciple. Moore is a preacher. We'd expect him to feel bad about the mistreatment of children, even brown ones. That's reasonably on brand. Imagine if Paul McCartney tweeted something about "the love you make" and Ringo snarkily responded, "Have you ever made a payroll? Were you ever stressed about quarterly shareholder reports?"
Falwell thinks it's unfair to criticize the fine folks running Trump's Pleasure Islands unless you've walked a mile in their jackboots. That's apparently also the position of online retailer Wayfair. The company reportedly sold $200,000 worth of bedroom furniture to government contractor BCFS. It was sent to a "facility" in Carrizo Springs, Texas, that will detain up to 3,000 migrant children. Wayfair made $86,000 from the deal, more than enough to buy a few toothbrushes.
Last September, Wayfair sold furniture to another Texas kiddie jail that held more than 2,500 children. It was shut down in January because of "serious safety and health concerns." This alone should be an impeachable offense. Anyway, a letter signed by 547 employees politely asked Wayfair not to involve itself in anything so gross. The response from CEO Niraj Shah was farcical.
Why won't the Congressional Research Service quote both sides?
Chuck Grassley, chair of the Senate Finance Committee, put on his sad grampa face Friday to let the Congressional Research Service know he's very disappointed in their May report finding the 2017 Tax Cuts for Rich Fuckwads hadn't produced a huge economic boom. In a letter to CRS Director Mary Mazanec, Grassley complained the report had to have been unfair since it didn't conclude that supply-side fairies are real. How can those crazy economists even claim to be nonpartisan if they come to conclusions Republicans don't like, huh?
In the letter, Grassley groused,
I have received comments from others who believe that the CRS observations are not entirely nonpartisan in tone or objective [...]
If CRS wishes to produce original research analysis that takes a position and tone that is favorable to one side of a debate, without balancing it with alternative objective views, then CRS ought not to present its analysis as objective, nonpartisan, and authoritative.
Not fair! The report came up with "original research analysis" that Grassley didn't care for, and therefore the whole organization is rotten.
Everything you need to know about these voodoo economics, told MAD.
There's a lot of crazy shit going on right now in Donald Trump's America, but we'd be remiss if we failed to mention that yesterday ART FUCKING LAFFER got the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Last year, Laffer and fellow crackpot Stephen "Too Wacko for the GOP" Moore authored the book Trumponomics to praise the Dear Leader's divinely inspired economic policies. But before that, he was famous -- or infamous -- for his Laffer Curve, sketched on a napkin in 1974 at a lunch meeting with Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld, who dismissed it as simplistic twaddle. But simplistic twaddle was very on-brand for Ronald Reagan, and soon the Laffer Curve was embraced by Republicans as justification to further rig the economy to benefit the rich. Yes, of course, it was a cloth napkin. DUH.
Job training? Sure, to be a COP!
Sen. Kamala Harris introduced a bill Wednesday that would give people money -- directly! -- for job training. As is mandatory, it includes a clever acronym: the "21st Century Skills are Key to Individuals' Life-Long Success (SKILLS) Act." The proposal would provide individual accounts up to $8,000, which could be used for education or training programs as well as for transportation or childcare to allow people to attend such training. Harris's office says as many as 78 million Americans could be helped by the plan. Just as long as none of them sign up for "Trump University."
Is she ready to rummmmble????
Cripes the News has been awful lately! And so Yr Editrix suggested we find some good, positive news. Especially after we pitched writing a Wonket about this Mother Jones story on how global warming may be killing the whales, even though Donald Trump knows their prince. (Reply: "Nope. FOR SURE NOT THAT.") And so, as a reminder that a gooder world is possible and apropos of nothing at all that definitely didn't set your Editrix off on Twitter, where she has been stewing and bitching most shrillfully about the 2016 election and the 2020 election and any terrible similarities thereof and thereupon and therefore and thereto, we present a collection of videos of Elizabeth Warren yelling at big banks and calling for them to be broken up and their criminal operators to go to jail. Puppies and kittens will only get you so far, after all.
Great GOP wordsmith Frank Luntz, the guy who gave us the "death tax" and who urged the George W. Bush administration to talk about "climate change" since it was less politically motivating than "global warming," did some more of his characteristic word magic today! While staying at the Hotel Imperial in Vienna, Austria, Luntz offered this cautionary tale about the evils of socialism, as illustrated by the shoddy conditions in a 5-star luxury hotel owned by Dubai's "Al Habtoor" conglomerate and operated by Marriott:
Talk about your grim hellholes! Apparently, there's only one elevator in the entire building, and it's been broken for three days, proving that European-style socialism is a failure that should never be imported to the USA, where -- damn it! -- all buildings work!
As some smartass pointed out, now Luntz may have to take the STAIRS, like a common Bolshevik!
We're still trying to get our heads around how a delay in getting an elevator fixed in a luxury hotel owned by the United Arab Emirati proprietors of Dubai's
- Habtoor Grand Resort
- Waldorf Astoria Dubai Palm Jumeirah
- Habtoor Palace, LXR Hotels & Resorts
- V Hotel, Curio Collection by Hilton
- Hilton Dubai Al Habtoor City
- Metropolitan Hotel Dubai
- Al Habtoor Polo Resort
as well as
- Imperial Hotel, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Vienna (Austria)
- Hilton London Wembley (United Kingdom)
- Hilton Beirut Habtoor Grand (Lebanon)
- Hilton Beirut Metropolitan Palace (Lebanon)
- President Abraham Lincoln Springfield – a DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel (United States)
- InterContinental Budapest (Hungary)
- The Ritz-Carlton, Budapest (Hungary)
is an example of the horrors of socialism, but then, we don't earn the big bucks like Luntz does. Austria is among the 14 richest countries in the world, so we're fairly certain it's not a commie hellhole. Then again, there is a very strong social safety net, so maybe people in subsidized housing stole all the elevator parts. Or perhaps the elevator would have been fixed sooner if only Austria didn't have such strong unions. It's a mystery.
Or maybe it's that NATIONAL socialism that's the problem, seeing as it has socialism RIGHT IN THE NAME!
Adolf Hitler, once a day labourer outside the Hotel Imperial Vienna, returned as the Führer and "delivered a speech to a rapturous crowd from [the hotel] suite's balcony, on 14 March 1938", according to www.famoushotels.org.
We suppose it's worth noting that the Imperial is decidedly not owned or operated by the Austrian government, where a far-Right coalition has recently imploded -- although maybe Luntz is confused about that, since official state guests are traditionally housed there. In any case, the elevator's busted, it's in Europe, Europe is socialist, and Frank Luntz is homesick for America, where no elevator ever goes unrepaired for an entire weekend. It simply has never happened because of our efficient free market!
Still, Luntz's tweet inspired some valuable reflections on how economic theory shapes the reality of everyday life. This is the kind of Austrian economics we can support.
In conclusion, capitalism always allocates resources efficiently and fairly, although that still doesn't explain why Frank Luntz has a job. And now it would be your DOKTOR ZOOM'S BIRTHDAY PARTY OPEN THREAD, if only the socialists would fix the elevator, the end.
Yr Wonkette is entirely supported by donations from you, the reader. Please send us money so socialists won't make us take the stairs.
The weaponization of 'family values.'
If there's one thing Republicans hate, it's "social engineering" -- they really can't stand it when government tells We The People how to run their lives. Unless of course you're talking about poor people, and especially poor black people. In that case, plenty of states are very happy to tell people exactly how to live, as documented in research by Zach Parolin, a post-doctoral researcher at Columbia University's Center on Poverty & Social Policy. Parolin summarizes his findings in an Atlantic piece, showing that states with large African-American populations tend to spend "welfare" money not on basic assistance that could actually alleviate poverty, but instead on telling poor people to stop fucking, get married, and generally not be so shiftless.
And we are yummy, like Kobe beef!
You might think rich people would hate the idea of raising taxes on the rich, but a new "millionaire poll" by CNBC shows that a large chunk of America's rich people are actually just fine with some proposals to increase their own taxes. In fact, 60 percent of the millionaires polled support Elizabeth Warren's Eat The Rich wealth tax proposal, which would impose a two percent tax on wealth over $50 million, and three percent on assets over a billion dollars.
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