An inspiring refugee kid, book chat, a nifty 1902 movie made in 'color,' and the inevitable reading recommendations!
Bet you guys could do with some nice things about now, huh? So let's take a break from the usual grind of horrors and nastiness and look at some less miserable stuff for a while, shall we? Oh indeed we shall.
ACCORDING TO SOURCES, IT WAS DEFINITELY A THING.
BREAKING ACHTUNG EVERYBODY CRY AND PANIC AND HAVE ROLLICKING SEXUAL INTERCOURSE, BECAUSE ROBERT MUELLER DID THE THING.
We don't know what the thing means yet, but we know that he gave the thing to Attorney General Bill Barr, who is presumably looking at the thing right now. Donald Trump is at Mar-a-Lago, so he does not have the thing, because NO THING FOR ILLEGITIMATE PRESIDENTS. Studies show that according to sources close to the investigation who may or may not be close to the investigation, we might have some real information on what is inside the thing sometime this weekend.
Just another Foreign Policy Friday, brought to you by the Underpants King of Mar-a-Lago!
Whatcha doin' down there at Mar-a-Lago, Mister Normal President Of America?
OK ... huh?
Some hack, is who.
Donald Trump continues his tradition of choosing the Very Best People for important administration jobs, announcing today that he's picked rightwing activist and CNN commentator Stephen Moore to fill one of two vacancies on the Federal Reserve Board. Moore appears to have won the position by vocally criticizing the fiscal policies of Fed chair Jerome Powell, a Deep State operative who hates Donald Trump, prosperity, and America, and who of course was appointed to his position by Donald Trump. Just don't remind Trump of that, OK, because you'd be lying and wrong.
Trump Can't Reveal Secret Sexxx Chats With National Security Advisor Vladimir Putin, EXECUTIVE PRIVILEGE APPLYETH!
NARRATOR: No, it doesn't.
Thursday, in our post about how the Trump White House has decided to treat all congressional requests with the same level of disrespect, and that they're doing it intentionally, because FUCK YEAH, LET'S DO THE WATERGATE THING, we noted that White House counsel Pat Cipollone had just fired off a letter to House Democratic committee chairmen Elijah Cummings (Oversight), Eliot Engel (Foreign Affairs) and Adam Schiff (Intel), saying HOW ABSOLUTELY DARE YOU ask the White House for information about what Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin say under the covers to each other at night, HOW ABSOLUTELY DARE YOU!
This, despite how the FBI (really! for real!) opened an investigation into whether Trump is a literal actual foreign agent, because he does shit constantly to make it look like he is severely compromised by Vladimir Putin, who may or may not be Trump's KGB handler from way back. Yes, we get that it's an odd situation for Congress to have to demand to know what the president discusses with foreign leaders in private, but it's only odd because the president refuses to disclose his discussions with Putin, even as he crawls under the table with Putin and giggle-whispers with Putin every time they're in the same room. It's even more odd that Trump has literally confiscated his translators' notes of his meetings with Putin. Everything's just kinda strange in Putin's America, we mean Trump's America!
Great Moments In Gun Stupidity, part 5593 and counting.
Teachers in an Indiana school were shot in the back with plastic pellets by sheriffs' deputies during a January "active shooter drill," according to testimony in a legislative hearing this week. The rubber pellets, a bit bigger than a BB, were fired from an Airsoft pellet gun; at least one teacher reported the things raised welts and drew blood. But come on, it definitely got the point across that during an actual school shooting, people may get shot. That's very educational! The Indianapolis Star has the juicy stinging details:
[The incident] was confirmed by two elementary school teachers in Monticello, who described an exercise in which teachers were asked by local law enforcement to kneel down against a classroom wall before being sprayed across their backs with plastic pellets without warning.
"They told us, 'This is what happens if you just cower and do nothing,'" said one of the two teachers, both of whom asked IndyStar not to be identified out of concern for their jobs. "They shot all of us across our backs. I was hit four times.
"It hurt so bad."
Well look, lady, you're the one who volunteered to be on the front lines of combat by choosing to teach elementary school. Next we suppose you'll complain about having to carry your platoon's M-60 machine gun to the cafeteria. Nobody wants to hump the pig, but it's that or take point, OK?
The Indiana State Teachers Association, the state's teacher union, is asking lawmakers to add language prohibiting such simulated executions of school staff from future training, even though the sheriff's department that helpfully took teachers four at a time into a closet and pretended to blow them away has already promised not to do it anymore.
OK well just in case he forgot.
Can we just say that when Fox idiot Maria Bartiromo sounds like the sane person in a situation, that is a worrisome situation? That is what happened when Donald Trump -- who's just had a fantastic Infrastructure Week, assuming it is Infrastructure Week, and we always do -- sat down for what was supposed to be an easy breezy "You're the best!"/"No YOU are, Mister President!" interview with his beloved Fox pals.
Instead Maria Bartiromo had to ask the question on everybody's mind, which is WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU OH MY GOD, or, more clearly, is there a reason you have spent this entire week of your presidency picking a fight with a dead guy, who somehow seems to be winning that fight, because you are literally so stupid and incompetent you LOSE FIGHTS TO DEAD GUYS?
She said it nicer than that, though.
Probably Obama's fault somehow.
Last fall, after Wisconsin voters rejected Gov. Scott Walker's reelection bid and chose Democrat Tony Evers instead, Republicans in the state legislature got very busy doing anything they could to limit the power of the incoming governor and the new Democratic attorney general, Josh Kaul. Hey, voters may have chosen Evers, but that didn't mean Rs had to let Democrats actually govern, now did it? As Republican state House Speaker Robin Vos rather notoriously said at the time, the lege had to act because "We are going to have a very liberal governor who is going to enact policies that are in direct contrast to what many of us believe in." So in a two day "extraordinary session," the Republicans shifted power from the executive branch and gave those powers to the legislature, which conveniently remained in Republican control thanks to gerrymandering. Scott Walker signed the bills and then began his career as an idiot on Twitter.
Yesterday, a Wisconsin judge found the entire lame duck session violated the state constitution, and invalidated the laws it passed. Dane County Circuit Judge Richard Niess said in his decision the Wisconsin constitution is quite specific about when the legislature can meet, and nope, the "extraordinary session" didn't meet the constitutional requirements, so sorry guys, you didn't follow the rules and your laws ARE MOOT.
The Associated Press lawsplains the constitutional neener-neener:
A million here, a million there, soon you're talking about real money!
Those wild-eyed socialists at Forbes magazine sure do have a knack for embarrassing "billionaire" Donald Trump. Earlier this year the magazine looked at some of his millions of dollars in real estate sales to untraceable buyers, and of course we all know how much fun it was to point out Trump's net worth is dropping during his presidency, no matter how much the guy grifts. Wednesday, the same reporter who brought us those fun reports, Dan Alexander, dipped into Trump's federal financial reporting documents again to reveal various Trump Organization entities have billed his 2020 reelection effort some $1.3 million -- just since he took office. None of those silly "I'm a really rich guy" or "I'm self funding" lies this time around (though of course they were mostly lies the first time around, too). He may not be getting rich off the presidency, but he'll probably cover at least a few trips to McDonalds.
Since Trump was sworn in, the biggest recipient of Trump 2020 funding -- most of it from the schlubs who answer fundraising emails asking for help building WALL or rounding up Messicans or jailing Hillary Clinton or sending Robert Mueller to Gitmo -- has gone to "Trump Tower Commercial LLC," the holding company through which Big Bother manages his share of Trump Tower in Manhattan. Another $225,000 in rent to Trump Tower Commercial LLC came from the Republican National Committee. So right there, you have the biggest chunk of cash.
Good luck with that, boys.
Remember a few weeks ago when House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerry Nadler sent a very nice and loving request to 81 people and entities associated with Donald Trump, including the White House, asking to please FUCKING GIVE IT a million documents, in order to aid Judiciary's investigation into Trump's millions of crimes? Well, the deadline was Monday, and some folks are helping! Others are not!
According to Nadler, they've already gotten "tens of thousands" of documents, and all signs point to more document requests coming, to approximately one million more people. There have been some surprises, too. Steve Bannon is helping a LOT, turning over thousands of pages (which is perhaps too much if you've ever seen that episode of "The West Wing," where CJ Cregg talks about being so crazy over-compliant with Congress that they just snow down investigators with everything, including take-out menus and junk mail). Trump Inauguration weirdo/longtime associate Tom Barrack is helping, and Hope Hicks is also too gonna be a good little helper. And so on!
And some are asking for "friendly subpoenas," like for instance attorney Keith Davidson, who used to rep Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, who's asking for that in order to "formalize the process," as Politico puts it. (Some people don't like being asked nicely.)
Still others are saying straight up NO, and some of them have better reasons than others. Roger Stone is pleading the Fifth on advice of counsel because, you know, he's in trouble with the law right now. Rick Gates says he can't really help, citing how he is still a cooperating witness who is very business hunting wabbits in multiple ongoing investigations. And Julian Assange said no, because (LOL) he is a journalist, you guys, and Congress shouldn't subpoena journalists about their sources. (Actually WikiLeaks is a cut-out for Russian intelligence. Which is kind of like "journalist," except not remotely.)
But the real story here is that the White House, in response to pretty much every document request it's gotten, is saying "FUCK OFF! WE ARE GOING TO DO THE WATERGATE THING! IT WORKED OUT VERY WELL, IN WATERGATE! FUCK IT, LET'S DO THE WATERGATE THING!"
Oklahoma is the Florida of Alabamas.
There are a few vacancies in the Sheriff's Office in Nowata County, Oklahoma. Like almost all of them, after the acting Sheriff, Terry Sue Barnett, resigned Monday, along with the undersheriff, all the deputies, and most of the staff at the county jail. They all walked off the job after Barnett alleged a judge tried to pressure and also maybe bribe her into reopening the jail, which had been evacuated at the end of February over multiple safety issues she says the county has not made any efforts to fix. The Tulsa World has the story, which had us raising our eyebrows so frequently our forehead hurts now. (Mind you it's a heavy lift.)
Three dispatchers and two jailers stayed on the job, at least; the dispatchers still take care of 911 calls for fire and EMT services, although they have to patch law enforcement calls to other agencies. Inmates from the county jail are being held in a nearby county's jail for the time being. In a news conference yesterday, Barnett said the jail suffered from an extensive list of problems that made it unsafe, including exposed wiring and carbon monoxide gas that had hospitalized jail staff. And then there's the live snake that fell on a prisoner, which we'll get to in a moment.
Probably the cow's fault. What isn't!
Well DARNIT! None of Devin Nunes's plans are going the way he thought they would! (Just like that time Nunes RELEASED THE MEMO, after a week of Russian bots and rural pigfuckers tweeting RELEASE THE MEMO, after which everybody was like "LOL, Devin, that's your memo? That little thing? Put it away please.")
Nunes started the week suing his cow and his mom (not their real names), because there was a fake internet cow and a fake internet mom making fun of him too much and making him cry. Finally, Nunes had found somebody he wanted to unmask! (#UnmaskTheCow is the new hashtag, right-wingers, MAKE IT TREND.) Also he sued Twitter, for made-up reasons. Anyway, everybody laughed at his little lawsuit and said, "Put it away please," and now the online cow has one gazillion Twitter followers, and forevermore anybody who tries to Google Devin Nunes will learn about the cow, just like that naughty thing Dan Savage did to Rick Santorum so many years ago.
And now! AND NOW. Now, some kind of hooligan whippersnappers (probably friends of the cow) found a video of young Devin Nunes on C-SPAN in 2010, just stone cold defending protesters calling John Lewis, Civil Rights Hero, the N-word. This was during the Age Of The Teabaggers, who were very upset about Obamacare, and just in general upset about how Barack Obama was a Kenyan Gay Muslim Usurper from Homosexi-stan, and also a literal dictator.
So C-SPAN host Steve Scully asked Nunes what he thinks about these protesters calling John Lewis the N-word. Nunes had thoughts!
No. No. No no no no no.
There are so many important stories in the world right now. Let's ignore them and talk more about Kellyanne Conway and the two men in her life who hate each other so much OMG FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT. We are of course talking about Donald Trump's little tiff with George Conway, because it is FISTICUFFS and MEOW and GRRR ARGH.
Good morning, George:
In case you were wondering if maybe this morning, George Conway might be taking a break from bashing Trump on Twitter, the answer is no, he is not taking a break from bashing Trump on Twitter. He is all over that shit.
Meanwhile over in Kellyanne Conway's world! KAC went on the Fox Business network to tell Maria Bartiromo about her feelings, and George's feelings, and Dipshit's feelings. On top of throwing constant shade at her husband, who wouldn't be anybody if she wasn't Kellyanne Conway -- in this and every other interview she's giving -- she explained that Trump is having a Mad Cow Disease Moment on Twitter because "he's protective of me," and confirmed that she is "not being asked to choose" between George and Dipshit. She said George does wish she would quit White House, but that that would send a bad message to the feminists. (?)
Like, literally. He made them get chickenpox, because he is A IDIOT.
Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin explained on a radio talk show that he loves his kids so much he deliberately exposed them all to chickenpox, which has potentially deadly side effects. But hey, they lived, so he's the freakin' parent of the century. Bevin said that he'd taken all his kids to the home of a neighbor whose child had chickenpox so they'd all get the disease, instead of getting them vaccinated, and by golly, he's proud of his medically risky decision. And if his kids get shingles later in life, he may not be around to blame anymore, so it's all good!
'WHAT KIND OF AMATEUR DEEP STATE DO YOU THINK WE ARE?' (Not a quote from Preet Bharara.)
Former US Attorney Preet Bharara, whom Donald Trump fired for probably criminal reasons, went on the Ari Melber MSNBC program on Tuesday afternoon -- he's promoting a new book, which looks great -- and he shed some light on a subject that's come up time to time over the past couple of years, and it is Deep Staters (we kid! not really!) like himself talking about taping Donald Trump. In the process, he made some news, and it is that, just before Trump fired him for probably criminal reasons, he thought about taping Donald Trump. And why? Because FUCKER LIES. Therefore it might be a good idea to memorialize one's conversations with the shithole human being, just in case fucker decides to lie in public about a conversation you had with him.
Makes enough sense, right?
Bharara recounted how Trump originally asked him during the transition to stay on at the Southern District of New York -- which was in itself odd, as he was an Obama appointee -- and then it got weird when Trump started calling him. And Bharara was the only US attorney Trump was calling. And then it got super weird when Trump called him after the inauguration, outside normal protocols. And so Bharara revealed that he considered taping Trump, if he were to return the weird phone call he got in March, you know, just in case Trump did something weird and/or criminal and proceeded to lie about it. Bharara and his people decided not to return the phone call, and soon after Bharara was fired.
President Dangerfield gets no respect, yet again.
Donald Trump used the occasion of a speech at a tank factory in Ohio (which is busy creating jobs by building additional M1 battle tanks the Army didn't want) to call Elizabeth Warren "Pocahontas" again, as one does when discussing military readiness and pork-barrel spending. And while he was at it, he also took the chance to tell the crowd how much he still hates one veteran in particular, even though that veteran happens to be dead.
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