On the morning of Friday, January 25, 2019, dark and early, NPR popped up on my clock radio and Steve Inskeep said the following words: “Roger Stone is set to appear in federal court. He was arrested in Florida.” Continue reading “The Art of Distraction…”
Up till now, news in the Age of Trump has broken on Friday, too late for anyone to pay attention because they’re commuting home, burned out from another week fighting the dumpster fire our nation’s become. They’re too busy trying to reclaim their lives on the weekend, pretending that the house isn’t falling apart around them.
So it will come as no surprise to anyone paying attention that the news of Mueller’s pending indictment(s) came on Friday. What’s different is the way people have reacted since that news broke. Reactions ranging from “it’s nothing” to “they GOT the son of a bitch” have been all over my FB feed and on Twitter. Those who Know how slowly the gears of justice grind have cautioned folks to adopt a “wait and see” approach.
Since Friday’s news hit my feed, I’ve been squarely in the latter camp. No popcorn popping, no advance celebrations. I am in damage control mode here at TCT, mostly because I had better things to do last weekend than to exercise wild, idle speculation over who was going to get whacked come Monday morning.
So here we are, today.
…Gates was linked to internal turmoil during the campaign. Most notoriously, according to a campaign source, the Trump aide signed off on and edited the plagiarized speech given by Melania Trump at the Republican national convention, when she was quickly revealed to have copied chunks of a speech by Michelle Obama.
Here’s all the documentation you need regarding all the charges against them, thanks to Associated Press:
It’s an important step, but not the bombshell people wanted. Here’s why:
But the big news? The thing nobody expected?
Wasn’t there a guy by that name way back in the Clinton administration? No, that’s George Stephanopolous.
I could Retweet everything Seth Abramson has to say on this, but if you’re already on Twitter, go read the thread for yourself.
(THREAD) Paul Manafort and Rick Gates are now indicted. This thread analyzes legal and political aspects of their indictment and surrender. pic.twitter.com/Ir8zKaA1F2
— Seth Abramson (@SethAbramson) October 30, 2017
The bottom line here is not just that there’s grounds for collusion with Russia over the campaign, but also subsequent grounds for suspicion AFTER Trump took office in January. At least that’s my takeaway from this:
Of course, it’s Hillary must be colluding instead! Go arrest her and Mueller. They’re in this together!
This “wag the dog” moment brought to you by a flailing US President on the verge of a massive meltdown over his own fuck-ups, mistaken alliances, and a path to prison for at least some of the people who aided and abetted his rise and subsequently corrupt administration.
If you want to see what Rome looked like just before it burned, I invite you to peek into Washington, DC this morning.
Twitter’s the fiddle and Trump’s playing it for all it’s worth.
Now I’m going to get the popcorn.
ETA: Here’s Sarah Huckabee Sanders pretending none of this is connected to the campaign.
Okay, I’m busy trying to mess with my office machines, but I can’t let this go.
First it was Flynn, then Sessions. And now J. D. Gordon has come out in USAToday (source coming soon) to say that Trump himself knew about the change to the Republican National Committee’s platform to soften the rhetoric on Russia and the Ukraine.
Riddle me this, Batman: Is there ANYONE in Trump’s current administration, or (in fact) ANY part of the GOP not tainted through the Russians?
Link sausage below, courtesy of USAToday, which broke the story earlier.
(Autolaunch video on this one.)
And then there’s Pence, who should know what insecure email looks like. It takes one to know one?
(Autolaunch video on this one, too.)
Ya know, that alternate reality where the GOP wasn’t successful in destroying our ability to elect a liberal president who would accomplish at least some of the progressive agenda? Where do I go to jump to that timeline? Because I’ve had about all the crap I want to take here, and we’re NOT EVEN TWO MONTHS IN!
I can tell you one thing, boy: If this was Hillary Clinton’s campaign we were talking about, she’d be behind bars faster than you could say “Dasvidaniya.”
Hold the hypocrites accountable and throw them ALL out of office!
There is no way I can write a response to her question without taking on the people who read my writing, so let me preface this statement with the following: I am GLAD people are finally waking up and doing something. It’s about damn time.
That said, in realigning my personal and political blogs, I’ve had ample opportunity to look back at my writing. I lived through the Reagan era and I spent a lot of time reading articles about our history, about abortion, toxic waste, energy, and a host of other issues most kids my age barely acknowledged.
I guarantee you the writing was on the wall, even back then, especially as the USA Patriot Act was fresh and new.
I supported him. I did not and DO NOT support those people who thought he should win, picked up their toys and went to vote for Johnson or Stein instead.
I listened to Stein continue the dialogue, and to Nader as well, on Election night. They *STILL* have not walked back one thing they said that night. Until I see THEM apologize, turn THEIR supporters back into the fold, this whole discussion is meaningless.
Where the fuck are THEY now?
Decades from now, will we remember all the warnings? Will we even be able to find the evidence that was there?
In the last few days, since the start of the 115th Congress, there have been reports all over the internet of rules changed to favor the GOP, to give them the power to strip away protections that keep our citizens healthy and safe.
None of these steps are new. Not one.
From the “victory tour” Trump recently finished, to his incessant Tweeting, he’s providing all the propaganda and smokescreen Republicans in the House and Senate require to hide what they’re doing. In the meantime, state legislatures are continuing to flex their ALEC-fueled conservative wings. Just yesterday, two new North Carolina-style bathroom bills surfaced, in Texas and Virginia. Restricted rights are just the beginning. We’re seeing a fascist takeover of the country, and we may well be too late to stop it.
Anyone who failed to recognize or who now denies the truth of what Trump says he will do, who believes he wasn’t serious about the things he said before the election, deserves everything that’s coming. The hate, the denial, are symptoms of a much larger problem: Blame.
Regardless of who’s responsible for the ills of the country’s midsection and rust belt, the implications are very, very real. But it’s far, far more than just the ACA that’s going to fall in the next month.
It is denial of the parallels between the US and Germany that cost us the White House. Republicans denied the history. Liberals did, too. It’s all very well and good to deny history, to assume that it can’t happen here, but that’s a foolish path to take, because it has left us unprepared.
Two days ago, Ann Coulter Tweeted “14” to her fans. Today is the 14th day to the Inauguration. Make no mistake here: Her Tweet was a reference. Ignore that message, or the appointment of Steve Bannon to Trump’s administration, at your peril.
There’s only one way to deal with this. Resolve to resist what’s coming. Carry the truth. Print it on paper, because Net Neutrality is not guaranteed.
Have you stored a lot of your things in the “Cloud” to back up your business? Start figuring out now what you’ll do when your internet access goes away.
You have 14 days left to get the most important things out of the cloud.
Are you ready?
61 days and counting…
“I listened as they called my President a Muslim.
I listened as they called him and his family a pack of monkeys.
I listened as they said he wasn’t born here.
I watched as they blocked every single path to progress that they could.
I saw the pictures of him as Hitler.
I watched them shut down the government and hurt the entire nation twice.
I watched them turn their backs on every opportunity to open worthwhile dialog.
I watched them say that they would not even listen to any choice for Supreme Court no matter who the nominee was.
I listened as they openly said that they will oppose him at every turn.
I watched as they did just that.
I paid attention.
Now, I’m being called on to be tolerant.
To move forward.
To denounce protesters.
To “Get over it.”
To accept this…
I will not.
I will do my part to make sure this great American mistake becomes the embarrassing footnote of our history that it deserves to be.
I will do this as quickly as possible every chance I get.
I will do my part to limit the damage that this man can do to my country.
I will watch his every move and point out every single mistake and misdeed in a loud and proud voice.
I will let you know in a loud voice every time this man backs away from a promise he made to them.
Them. The people who voted for him.
I will do this so that they never forget.
And they will hear me.
They will see it in my eyes when I look at them.
They will hear it in my voice when I talk to them.
They will know that I know who they are.
They will know that I know what they are.
Do not call for my tolerance. I’ve tolerated all I can.
Now it’s their turn to tolerate ridicule.
Be aware, make no mistake about it, every single thing that goes wrong in our country from this day forward is now Trump’s fault, just as much as they thought it was Obama’s.
I find it unreasonable for them to expect from me what they were entirely unwilling to give.”
Your reading selection for the day comes from a series of articles that posted not long after the results hit the news. They may have been buried in your newsfeed, or you might not have seen them at all, depending on your echo chamber settings (thanks to FB’s algorithms).
The going conversation sounds polite (“It won’t be that bad. You’re exaggerating.”) or obnoxious (“Suck it up, buttercup.”) but the message is the same either way. It’s all about denying reality.
In the meantime, life goes on, people try to normalize a situation that is far, far removed from normal, and we drift ever closer to the end of life in the US as we’ve known it for our whole lives. The vast numbers of people who served in or grew up during the Great Depression and World War II are either dead or dying.
Many of our heroes are also dying, because of bad genes or poor lifestyle choices, or because they’re just plain old and we haven’t noticed because we still feel the same. Every voice that’s stilled, every change in history that can no longer be confirmed, is another step on the road to erasing the past.
It may already be too late for us. Our history goes in 100 year cycles and we are way overdue for civil or world war in this country. Our politicians protect the interests of the rich. The oligarchy has taken over. We are the Corporate States of Amerika and Revolution is coming.
Will you be prepared to stop the cops or the mob from taking your neighbor? Is free speech important? Do you want a place for your children’s children to grow old? Can you find somewhere that’s safe?
Think about it.
Al Jazeera America: Jim Crow returns. Millions of minority voters threatened by electoral purge
TheGuardian.com: Neoliberalism – the ideology at the root of all our problems. Financial meltdown, environmental disaster and even the rise of Donald Trump – neoliberalism has played its part in them all. Why has the left failed to come up with an alternative?
The New York Review of Books: Autocracy: Rules for Survival
But that doesn’t matter, because time moves on whether I like it or not.
So here are two raw links. Read everything, including the sublinks.
What comes after January 20, 2017 is on you.
I’ll be back soon to write the posts I’ve got sitting in drafts.
Go do your homework.
You’ve gotten this far, so it’s likely that you can find all the ways in which I predicted the outcome of this year’s Presidential election. There isn’t anyone as clear on the subject as Jim Wright, so I will let him tell you what I think of the situation, at least in part. Stonekettle Station: Bug Hunt
There. Got that all out of your system?
There’s a new sticky post on my blog, which is gonna stay there for a while, containing the names and links to organizations that need your support NOW, before the feds pull any money they receive through grants. I can personally guarantee you that half these organizations will cease to exist without direct donations from you, because they serve to support everything the GOP despises.
What’s coming? Why the storm?
You can scroll back through all the posts I’ve made regarding war. Feel free. They build my case.
Let’s be clear here: With all the hate crawling out of the cracks and crevices, targeting those who don’t sort easily into Straight, White, Christian, and Male, is it really any wonder how this happened? And to those people who are all “Trump won, get over it,” you have absolutely no idea what you’re glibly asking people to do, because you’re safe.
You’re not LGBTQ, you’re not a person of color, you’re not a woman or girl, you’re Christian. And if you are in one or more of these demographics? Try to remember that your pragmatism is causing one of two possible reactions: “You Asked For It (insert excuse here),” or “It can’t possibly be that bad.”
Either way, you’re wrong.
In the first case, your view is the classic abuser line that survivors hear all the time: You must have done something to deserve this.
In the second, most of the people you’re talking to already struggle with otherness, and you are telling them to shove themselves back into a closet, to get over their disabilities, to pretend they aren’t who they are.
If you don’t think it’s going to be that bad, you’ve never experienced life as a target. You can pass just because of the color of your skin. And that makes you an unfeeling asshole.
That’s how you sound to people who are already in same sex marriages, who contemplated a life that appeared to celebrate equality, that allowed women control over their own reproductive health, who depended on health insurance. And to those who were already targets in the sights of our justice system? That was a colossal Fuck You to every unarmed victim of police shooting.
Where’s your empathy?
“But I’m not a racist! I love my black friends. We have lunch together.”
Have you ever once considered the possibility that from the moment many of these people walk out of their homes they’re targets? That they (and YOU) can be arrested and charged with resisting arrest, and be jailed indefinitely for doing nothing more than walking out of the house at the wrong time?
Don’t tell me that’s hyperbole. Tell it to Michael Brown. To Trayvon Martin. To any of the millions of men and women incarcerated now, who work as slaves to the justice system. And go read the USA Patriot Act again.
This country has gone conservative. It’s been clear for decades…DECADES…that this was the path our country was going to take.
All the wrongheaded protest votes in the world, all the polls, all the expectations tossed down our throats by pundits who simply couldn’t conceive or wouldn’t be honest about where we were headed, they put us where we are today.
Trust me. We are going to war.
It won’t be immediate. It’s going to take some time. Give it six months, though, tops, before we have boots on the ground somewhere. The only question I have is whether it will be here in this country or overseas, but it’s time. The clock has finally struck thirteen.
We have always been at war with Eurasia.
Or was that Eastasia?
Welcome to Oceania.
Enjoy your stay.
And from here on out, I’m live on Facebook, and will post updates below.
I’m devoting all my time right now to updating my spreadsheet.
When I’ve finished, I’ll post my results to 270towin.com, but there’s no point in putting the link up now.
ETA: 1:43am EST – http://www.270towin.com/maps/36n0N (My best guess as of this moment.)
Folks, I don’t think I can watch anymore. I’m going to go to bed and try to sleep.
I just want people to remember, when they look back at tonight, that the polls this year were WORTHLESS. They lied, just the way I said they would.
They didn’t take into account independents, and that’s where they went wrong. The pundits won’t admit this fault in the logic, but that’s where it lies.
And for the record, yes, Jill Stein did have an effect. She cost us Pennsylvania, if it comes down to the wire in that state.
This morning a friend posted this link to my FB account.
The pull quote (and the reason why you need to read the whole article) is here (emphasis mine):
The above is adapted, in some places word-for-word, from a 75-year-old Harper’s essay titled “Who Goes Nazi?” Written by Dorothy Thompson, the first American journalist to be expelled from Nazi Germany, the article presents readers with the aforementioned “macabre parlor game” in which she secretly assesses which guests at a random social function might “go Nazi” given the proper political and social conditions. As Thompson keenly observed from her time in Germany, there was no single demographic “type” of Nazi supporter; workers and businessmen and intellectuals and landed gentry all backed Adolf Hitler’s political movement, just as workers and businessmen and intellectuals and landed gentry opposed it. There were even Jews, Thompson wrote, “who have repudiated their own ancestors in order to become “Honorary Aryans and Nazis.” Nazism, Thompson argues, “appeals to a certain type of mind,” not a rigid composite. As such, her article is a timeless analysis of the authoritarian mentality and makes for disturbingly relevant reading today.
I recognize that it’s been a long, slow slog through some of the foulest, nastiest rhetoric ever heard in the US during an election cycle. In the past, all the vile comments and horrible intentions were out of sight, hidden behind closed doors. Trump took the velvet gloves off this year, and we know what’s on his mind. At least we did until his staff took away his Twitter account.
Witness the attempt to fool voters into believing they can text their votes. Who do these people think we are? Do they truly think we’re that stupid? Apparently so.
Well, today’s the day. Let’s show them that we all know they are trying to manipulate the outcome, just as James Comey tried to do, with his eleventh-hour FBI release of…absolutely nothing important.
I’ll be out for a while today, enjoying the weather, since I already cast my vote last week. I’ll check back in again, on this post, with updated statistics as the returns come in.
Here are some useful links, while we’re waiting for the results:
Poll Closing times (when we think we should start to see results): http://www.270towin.com/closing.php
See you soon.
#ImWithHer #DumpTrump #VOTE