The frogurt is also cursed.
August 11, 2017 12:41 PM   Subscribe

While Trump continues to ratchet up threats with North Korea, the military is not actually "fully in place" for such a conflict. After Putin expels 755 U.S. diplomats and technical personnel, , the U.S. President expresses gratitude. Meanwhile, Special Prosecutor Mueller's investigation, having already targeted the short-tenured National Security Advisor General Flynn, has also conducted a nighttime raid on the home of former Trump Campaign Director Paul Manafort and subpoenaed his bank records. Many speculate that Flynn and Manafort are just the first to be broken in an investigation that could lead to bigger fish.
posted by darkstar (2898 comments total) 119 users marked this as a favorite
 
This is the moment that Trump really became president.
posted by OverlappingElvis at 12:43 PM on August 11 [27 favorites]


A new thread, and a new drawing, this time of creepy dead eyed administration hack Stephen Miller.

Please feel free to share, download, what have you.
posted by Phlegmco(tm) at 12:45 PM on August 11 [71 favorites]


i'm so exhausted, ya'll.
posted by odinsdream at 12:48 PM on August 11 [80 favorites]


There's an end to all of this, I'm sure. But at what cost?
posted by tommasz at 12:48 PM on August 11 [1 favorite]


The best line from the SNL summer update: "Well, it’s been a crazy year these past few weeks."
posted by Melismata at 12:49 PM on August 11 [131 favorites]


The home page of the Washington Post has a graphic with sort of heatmaps around major US cities and a headline "Want to get away? Here’s how far you can get if you leave America’s largest cities at rush hour." I was totally thinking it was going to be how far you can get if NK launches a missile strike.
posted by snofoam at 12:50 PM on August 11 [37 favorites]


This is thread #124 about Potus45.
posted by ZeusHumms at 12:51 PM on August 11 [38 favorites]


I would really like to have a lovely scoop o'clock today. It's my birthday (are we still doing birthdays in these threads?), and while obviously I would like INDICTMENTS FOR ALL, or perhaps, a job quietly shuffling papers in Bob Mueller's office, I understand those are unlikely at this current juncture. So any other hideously damaging to the Trump administration scoops that are not about our imminent nuclear demise would be A+ b-day presents.

Anyway, I also spent a few minutes yesterday dreamily contemplating the raid on Paul Manafort's house, which is preferable to imagining any varieties of nuclear annihilation, or burning with anger about just who we have put in charge of the goddamn nuclear arsenal. Would recommend this really quite exquisite investigative imagine over contemplating your own mortality and/or the incalculable enormity of nuclear warfare.
posted by yasaman at 12:51 PM on August 11 [24 favorites]


This is thread #124 about Potus45.

Current evens count: -37,534.
posted by leotrotsky at 12:53 PM on August 11 [52 favorites]


The home page of the Washington Post has a graphic with sort of heatmaps around major US cities and a headline "Want to get away? Here’s how far you can get if you leave America’s largest cities at rush hour." I was totally thinking it was going to be how far you can get if NK launches a missile strike.

Jeeeeezus, can they not?? Can they really not spook us with stuff like that. It would be great, also, if I could stop seeing Facebook posts debating whether you really have to skip hair conditioner if you've been exposed to fall-out.

And maybe a serious question: Has there been a similar wind-up in public discourse like this in the past? One that ultimately fizzled out, or (at least) didn't end with nuclear blasts? I wasn't around for the Cuban Missile Crisis, so I have no context for this level of nervousness.
posted by witchen at 12:56 PM on August 11 [8 favorites]


"Well, it’s been a crazy year these past few weeks."

It certainly feels like I'm aging at the rate of a year every week.
"Yeah, he's an old boy. Only 35 human years, but in Trump years he's pushing a hundred."
"At least he's had a good run."
"Not for the past 15 Trump years he hasn't."
posted by Behemoth at 12:59 PM on August 11 [47 favorites]


The home page of the Washington Post has a graphic with sort of heatmaps around major US cities and a headline "Want to get away?

The Tampa Bay Times had a similar story this morning. Except it was a heat map of how many of us will die in a nuclear strike in CentCom/ SoCom.

Happy Friday everyone!
posted by photoslob at 1:00 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


The Reagan era in general was permeated with fear of a nuclear war. Western pop culture was fairly obsessive about it, with movies and other media focused on the topic. It didn't really end until the end of the Cold War.
posted by ZeusHumms at 1:00 PM on August 11 [16 favorites]


Hard to say, witchen. The previous presidents who dealt with nuclear war (Kennedy, Reagan) actually knew what they were doing as politicians and cared about serving their country. And, it was before the internet. Personally, I think that the internet is fueling a lot of artificial fear about someone who's just a stupid blowhard and isn't being taken seriously by any world leaders anywhere.
posted by Melismata at 1:05 PM on August 11 [7 favorites]


From the previous thread: On Thursday, NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch sent out a tweet storm explaining why the NRA didn’t stand up for Castile, saying it was because Castile was in the possession of “a controlled substance” and a firearm when he was pulled over.

“Which is illegal. Stop lying,” she tweeted.

Rep. Kathleen Rice (D-NY) retweeted Loesch’s statement, asking if Castile had been a white man, would the NRA have stayed silent on the matter.

posted by Room 641-A at 2:49 PM

Thank you! You just cleared up something that was confusing the hell out of me. I was the person Dana responded to about Philando Castile. At one point someone linked to an article about Kathleen Rice accusing her of something, something (long legal petition) but also seemed to be accusing me of being Kathleen Rice. I could not for the life figure out where the name Rice was coming from or why they thought I was her.

I woke up to over a 1000 mentions on my twitter feed and had to block any mentions with the word NRA, gun, Castile, or @DLoesch.

Also from the previous post the story about Rep. Buddy Rich wanting to stop funding to test rape kits (the same guy who wanted to snatch a knot in Lisa Mulkowski's ass) reminds me of Putin using sick orphans as a bargaining chip to get what he wants. In this case not only is the congressman using raped women as a bargaining chip, he would be insuring that rapists stay on the street to rape again. Nice. Classy.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 1:05 PM on August 11 [71 favorites]


I really hope the Mueller investigation doesn't end up taking down a lot of little fish and maybe one or two bigger sacrificial lambs while Trump and his inner circle get away.
posted by Sangermaine at 1:05 PM on August 11 [10 favorites]


I knew Trump was underqualified in every possible way, and that he'd be more inclined to hire sycophants and cronies than the best people for the job, despite his crowing. What does surprise me is that not a single Trump-whisperer has emerged. Is there no one who has his ear to even warn off the most disastrous turns of phrase?

Like, I'd think someone could appeal to his rapacious greed with regard to North Korea. Just explain that NK's missiles are largely pointed at Seoul, and there's a big ol' cluster of Trump condos in Seoul and Busan.

Or distract him, perhaps. Steer him by his desperate need for approval, and point out that the American people don't care about North Korea. "Sir, they need to know about jobs. Tell them how we're bringing jobs back to the Rust Belt!" If he's tweeting about coal and Morning Joe, he's not tweeting warmongering.

Yeah, he watches a lot of Fox News, but there has to be some sway back and forth. Threaten the folks over at Fox even: "Look, here's what you say about issues X, Y, and Z. Cross us on this, and you're not getting any interviews for a month. Play nice, and it's good for all of us!"

Is this stuff so hard? Is he really such a fucking wildcard that he can't even be steered? Or are intelligent people so unwilling to work with him that he's only got idiots and fanatics willing to try to steer that ship?
posted by explosion at 1:06 PM on August 11 [13 favorites]


The people in Seoul are not fully in place for Trump's diversionary war either.
posted by Bee'sWing at 1:06 PM on August 11 [5 favorites]


I take a short nap and wake up to breaking news Trump dick-waving what-the-fuckery?

The forget is also cursed.

That's bad. It's all bad
posted by Room 641-A at 1:09 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


the last time I remember nukes in the zeitgeist to a great degree was during the Pakistan/India standoff in 2002.

I feel like all this nuke hype is going to lead to the real tragedy, conventional war on the peninsula.
posted by angrycat at 1:09 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


Is there no one who has his ear to even warn off the most disastrous turns of phrase?

Apparently he's not consulting anyone when he makes these statements. He's just saying whatever happens to come to mind at any moment.

It's okay, though. God's OK with U.S. bombing North Korea.
posted by Sangermaine at 1:09 PM on August 11 [1 favorite]


Pop Culture Note: Thread title is an awesome shoutout to the classic Simpsons episode Treehouse of Horror III (Season 4, Episode 5), specifically the last story, "Dial 'Z' for Zombies".
posted by ZeusHumms at 1:11 PM on August 11 [14 favorites]


I just got back from my lunch break and another guy at the nearby burger joint was watching some video on the history of nuclear bombs playing loudly on his phone. All I wanted was a meal. All I wanted was to get away from the threat of annihilation for half an hour. But apparently this is life now.
posted by downtohisturtles at 1:11 PM on August 11 [8 favorites]


Meanwhile, Special Prosecutor Mueller's investigation, having already targeted the short-tenured National Security Advisor General Flynn, has also conducted a nighttime raid on the home of former Trump Campaign Director Paul Manafort and subpoenaed his bank records.

One would think that after Trump warned Mueller not to go after his own financial dealings that Trump might have learned not to make easily called bluffs, but here we are.

It's also useful to remember, as several pointed out last thread, that a subpoena is one thing, but for a search warrant, one has to convince a judge that there is probable cause to believe that evidence of a crime exists.
posted by Gelatin at 1:11 PM on August 11 [18 favorites]


The Tampa Bay Times had a similar story this morning. Except it was a heat map of how many of us will die in a nuclear strike in CentCom/ SoCom.

I am enough of a jerkbag that all I can see is that they misspelled "radius" as "radias." Twice.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 1:11 PM on August 11 [5 favorites]


Pop Culture Note

Addendum to which being that I think we are all implicitly Homer, asking if we can go now.
posted by cortex at 1:12 PM on August 11 [31 favorites]


I think Trump's goal is to goad North Korea into acting. Then the U.S. will move with relative impunity.

This is from the days before the 2003 war with Iraq.

Quoting bits of the book Hubris by Michael Isikoff and David Corn as presented here.

It also envisioned staging a phony incident that could be used to start a war. A small group of Iraqi exiles would be flown into Iraq by helicopter to seize an isolated military base near the Saudi border. They then would take to the airwaves and announce a coup was under way. If Saddam responded by flying troops south, his aircraft would be shot down by U.S. fighter planes patrolling the no-fly zones ...

Also from the above link, this time referring to an NYT article.

During a private two-hour meeting in the Oval Office on Jan. 31, 2003, he [Bush, Jr.] made clear to Prime Minister Tony Blair of Britain that he was determined to invade Iraq without the second resolution, or even if international arms inspectors failed to find unconventional weapons. . .

Mr. Bush talked about several ways to provoke a confrontation. . .


Trump's next step will not be to launch a nuclear weapon. It will be to goad North Korea into making an irrevocable action perhaps by staging an incident.

I wonder if there is a way to call that out in advance. Maybe someone could write a good article in how wars are staged: blowing up the Gulf of Tonkin incident (which was probably nothing), blowing up the Maine, lying about the Lusitania (which was not a staged incident). . .
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 1:13 PM on August 11 [15 favorites]


the military is not actually "fully in place"

so, locked and unloaded? or unlocked and loaded?

or neither locked nor loaded?
posted by Two unicycles and some duct tape at 1:13 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


Yes, Muellergiving better be way awesomer than Fitzmas.
posted by frecklefaerie at 1:14 PM on August 11 [23 favorites]


Someone needs to slip Trump a fake phone that can't send out tweets, it just makes him think it does. He wouldn't know the difference and it would improve our situation immensely.
posted by Sangermaine at 1:14 PM on August 11 [15 favorites]


Psst! Hey, future Atom Eyes:
Remember how blissfully naïve and innocent we were when we made this comment a few days back? Can you believe all the crazy shit that's gone down since then—what an absolutely electrifying rollercoaster of emotions it's been?

Look at us: sitting there at our desk, posting our silly little comment, dumb as a clam, with no idea whatsoever of the bizarre, mind-bending shit that's about to go down. Man, what a strange ride it's been, eh pardner?

Well, I guess present me will catch up with you in about a week or so and we can maybe split a six-pack and compare notes. Until then, keep on rockin' in the free world, baby!

posted by Atom Eyes at 1:15 PM on August 11 [31 favorites]


I loved that little bit about the WSJ trying to figure out what the markets would do in the event of a nuclear war. Well, what they'd probably do is cease to exist entirely.
posted by azpenguin at 1:15 PM on August 11 [30 favorites]


Update from Emergent US Left : Now that the convention is very much over, some wrap ups and thinkpieces have emerged!

Meet the young Socialists of Color leading the revolution
Are the Socialists Here To Ruin Everything?

Four Days with the Emerging Left
posted by The Whelk at 1:16 PM on August 11 [26 favorites]


Mueller is way too savvy to release anything on an August Friday afternoon. I wouldn't wait up.
posted by praemunire at 1:17 PM on August 11


The effect of one nuclear bomb on the US economy is probably equivalent to one hurricane.
posted by ZeusHumms at 1:18 PM on August 11


Treehouse of Horror III (Season 4, Episode 5), specifically the last story, "Dial 'Z' for Zombies".

I will fight to the death in support of the hypothesis "Season 04 was the BEST season"
posted by mikelieman at 1:18 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


Mueller is way too savvy to release anything on an August Friday afternoon. I wouldn't wait up.

Muller-mas comes in September!
posted by mikelieman at 1:19 PM on August 11 [1 favorite]


The effect of one nuclear bomb on the US economy is probably equivalent to one hurricane.

You are misinformed about nuclear bombs.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 1:19 PM on August 11 [99 favorites]


American Bridge @American_Bridge
.@SenDeanHeller is "pleased" with the defeat of the Senate's health care bill ... but he voted for it in the first place #nvsen

(video of news interview at tweet)
posted by Room 641-A at 1:19 PM on August 11 [9 favorites]


So bear with me here, because I don't want to seem like a Trump apologist. And I agree that "thanking" Putin for lowering the payroll costs is both stupid and unbelievably ignorant. But I wonder if this is one context in which the usual cry of "He never criticizes Putin" is just slightly off base? Does it seem possible to you that he is not actually defending Putin, but is trying to play off a "you can't hurt me nyah nyah" attitude toward him?
posted by janey47 at 1:20 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


Someone needs to slip Trump a fake phone that can't send out tweets

When I was on DelphiForums 15+ years ago, one of their moderator tools was the "bozo" setting: persons designated as "bozo" could post, and see their own posts, but none of the general users could see them, only moderators.

It was a tremendously useful forum tool - a "bozo" didn't have any indication that it was done, unless they logged out to check if their posts were appearing. (DelphiForums were public view.) So bozos would continue to post trolling comments in threads, and gradually be disappointed that nobody was taking the bait, and wander off.

Twitter needs to bozo the president.
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 1:20 PM on August 11 [158 favorites]


Treehouse of Horror III (Season 4, Episode 5), specifically the last story, "Dial 'Z' for Zombies".

I will fight to the death in support of the hypothesis "Season 04 was the BEST season"


Original air date: October 29, 1992
posted by ZeusHumms at 1:21 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


Um...Nah, it's a reference to the first one "Clown Without Pity"
posted by DeepSeaHaggis at 1:22 PM on August 11 [6 favorites]


Re: "bozo," it's called "shadow banning" or "stealth banning" now, and yeah, if they could keep some bots able to view the President to reply so that he didn't realize immediately that something is wrong, what a glorious solution.

Then again, Twitter has made it very very clear they have an anti-moderation policy. They punish people for being harassed.
posted by explosion at 1:23 PM on August 11 [21 favorites]


Um...Nah, it's a reference to the first one "Clown Without Pity"

D'oh!
posted by ZeusHumms at 1:23 PM on August 11 [8 favorites]


I think contemporary terminology for the bozo setting is "shadowban."

I recall ten million threads ago people coming up with the idea of providing a fake twitter environment for 45 — he sees his tweets, he sees (automatically generated) responses to the tweets, he thinks the world can see his tweets, no one can see his tweets. IIRC this conversation then moved toward discussing the construction of a fake oval office, the hiring of former fox news anchors to produce fake television to show him, and in general the potemkinization (or phildickification) of 45's entire environment.
posted by You Can't Tip a Buick at 1:24 PM on August 11 [15 favorites]


The effect of one nuclear bomb on the US economy is probably equivalent to one hurricane.

The children of women who were pregnant in New Orleans during Katrina are not being born with cancer. The buildings that are standing are not going to be toxic to inhabit for the next few generations. The gardens that were flattened are not now too toxic to grow food for humans to eat.

There is absolutely no amount of hurricane damage that is comparable to even one nuclear bomb. The main threat is not the firestorm and body count; it's the generations-to-centuries of invisible poison.
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 1:25 PM on August 11 [75 favorites]


YCTAB, that seems like an awful lot of work. Wouldn't be easier to just impeach him instead? /s
posted by Melismata at 1:26 PM on August 11 [5 favorites]


I've been shocked, since the election, at learning how little even educated, engaged acquaintances younger than, say, late 30s know about nuclear war and nuclear weapons. I've spoken personally with three people who had never heard of MAD, and thought that nuclear ordnance was just kind of bigger and worser than non-nuclear ordnance.

This scares the shit out of me, when I extrapolate from that--do we have entire, voting demographics who don't really see the big deal?
posted by sandettie light vessel automatic at 1:26 PM on August 11 [64 favorites]


Also, when a hurricane makes landfall there's no risk that it will lead to the rest of the world launching their own hurricanes at each other until everywhere on Earth is a windstorm.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 1:26 PM on August 11 [77 favorites]


He's apparently still using that old-ass Android that every security service on the planet no doubt has access to. Can't someone just uninstall Twitter and install some bozo setting Twitter clone app?
posted by soren_lorensen at 1:27 PM on August 11 [3 favorites]


That's bad

but you get your choice of topping!
posted by entropicamericana at 1:27 PM on August 11 [22 favorites]


The effect of one nuclear bomb on the US economy is probably equivalent to one hurricane.

At altitude for the best EMP over the US of A? Sure, you keep thinking the above.
posted by rough ashlar at 1:28 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


I've been shocked, since the election, at learning how little even educated, engaged acquaintances younger than, say, late 30s know about nuclear war and nuclear weapons. I've spoken personally with three people who had never heard of MAD, and thought that nuclear ordnance was just kind of bigger and worser than non-nuclear ordnance.

Seriously?!

Well, that just totally adds to my sense of existential despair, so thanks, I guess.
posted by infinitywaltz at 1:28 PM on August 11 [5 favorites]


Thanks for the new thread.

The Cold War is a natural point of reference for the present moment, but it's an imperfect one. In those times, you had two adversarial superpowers, each with thousands of nukes (and the ability to deliver them) – enough firepower to literally annihilate each other. And, although leaders on both sides were hardly angels, at least they were rational. No one wanted a nuclear war. Mutually assured destruction is a fucked-up doctrine, but it's a doctrine that's motivated by a sincere desire to avoid said destruction.

The present moment is not that.

In the present moment, you have one superpower, and one dysfunctional backwater of a nation who might be able to deliver one or two nukes before getting pulverized into the sea (and they know this). And instead of rational actors, you have two dudes with profound personality disorders, both doing their best to escalate the situation. They're two drunk assholes at a bar waving knives at each other, and we're all caught in the middle hoping we don't get stabbed.

I don't fear DPRK. I fear Trump. I fear that he'll launch a pre-emptive strike (with nuclear or conventional weapons), and who knows what the fuck happens then. DPRK has nukes and nothing to lose. Maybe they'll lob one at Seoul or Tokyo. Maybe they'll manage to get one to New York.

Even if nukes don't come into play, how will the rest of the world react to a brazenly pre-emptive war launched by a leader as distrusted as Trump – and in defiance of long-standing allies? We could easily end up in a shooting war with China, with the rest of the world saying "welp, good luck with that".

And, any kind of war will give cover for Russia to continue their campaign to erode American democracy, while we're all (understandably) preoccupied with the threat of atomic armageddon.

And no matter what happens, you're looking at tens of thousands of South Korean civilian casualties.

All of this for one profoundly damaged man's fragile fucking ego. I'm often disappointed to realize that we'll never know exactly what happened to this guy to turn him into such a colossal piece of dogshit. Two years in, and I'm still amazed by what a brittle, petty, spiteful, self-obsessed sack of failure he is.
posted by escape from the potato planet at 1:28 PM on August 11 [138 favorites]


Drew Magary wrote a pretty convincing dystopian book called "The Postmortal" that envisions a world in which the cure for aging is discovered. So people have two ages: Their actual calendar age, and their "cure age", the age at which the aging process was halted. The narrator has a cure age of 29. Even when he's in his 60s, he is biologically 29.

The Trump administration's mere existence feels like the opposite of that. My calendar age is 42, but just seven months in, I feel like my Trump age is 45.
posted by middleclasstool at 1:29 PM on August 11 [19 favorites]


Does it seem possible to you that he is not actually defending Putin, but is trying to play off a "you can't hurt me nyah nyah" attitude toward him?

I was actually thinking this was the likely explanation yesterday afternoon - it's an attempt to taunt and show how little the action hurts. However, it might sound good in Trump's brain, but from the outside it looks like:

-he's defending/siding with Putin;
-he doesn't care about the staff impacted by the move (and I know they are all part of State and still have jobs, but there's a callousness in his attitude towards their well-being)

And even if you do think it's Trump posturing with a taunt, it's an incredibly weak taunt to make because it allows Putin to up the stakes by either of these responses: "you liked it? Well, here's some more then!" i.e., kicking more people out or "that didn't hurt? Let me find something that will."
posted by nubs at 1:29 PM on August 11 [7 favorites]


What does surprise me is that not a single Trump-whisperer has emerged.

Trump has been rich enough his whole life to have never heard the word "no". If someone says that to him, he fires them and hires someone who won't. Until, eventually, they do, and then the cycle repeats.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 1:30 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


The effect of one nuclear bomb on the US economy is probably equivalent to one hurricane.

What would the economic effect be of investors worldwide learning that, hey, sometimes American cities seem to disappear suddenly, that doesn't seem to happen to Zurich so often
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 1:31 PM on August 11 [8 favorites]


A NK bomb will not be forthcoming or will Do very little.

A US bomb is more likely and will kill a lot of people, and will lead to conventional war.

Conventional war will kill millions, of course, in north and South Korea.

So the chances of a horrifying outcome are unnervingly high, but probably it won't be the US directly affected so pretending like it will be comes off a bit weird.

Unless China gets involved, then we're all fucked.

Also nukes being normalised is letting a big genie out of a bottle.
posted by Artw at 1:32 PM on August 11 [59 favorites]


Let me rephrase myself this way: how many nuclear warhead detonations would it take to stop the US economically and politically? Where would they have to be?
posted by ZeusHumms at 1:32 PM on August 11


how will the rest of the world react to a brazenly pre-emptive war launched

How much has the world cared enough to provide a reaction to the expending of munitions of the US of A so far?
posted by rough ashlar at 1:33 PM on August 11 [1 favorite]


The children of women who were pregnant in New Orleans during Katrina are not being born with cancer. The buildings that are standing are not going to be toxic to inhabit for the next few generations. The gardens that were flattened are not now too toxic to grow food for humans to eat.

Well, but you could say the same about Hiroshima and Nagasaki; despite all of the deaths from the blast itself and acute radiation poisoning, the survivors were able to resettle and rebuild immediately. As horrible as the effects of nuclear weapons are, they are almost entirely short-term.
posted by teraflop at 1:35 PM on August 11 [7 favorites]


BREAKING NEWS: Mike Pence's Website Not Actually Hacked, but Esquire reported this Funny or Die parody site as a real hack a couple of hours ago when it was actually [fake]
posted by infinitewindow at 1:35 PM on August 11 [3 favorites]


Perhaps now would be a good time for the UN or some other grouping of nations to place economic sanctions on the United States for warmongering?
posted by Joey Michaels at 1:35 PM on August 11 [12 favorites]


I'm having trouble expressing how wrongheaded it is to believe that the effect of a nuclear weapon on an American city would be roughly equivalent to one hurricane.
posted by Justinian at 1:36 PM on August 11 [65 favorites]


From previous thread:

(Emphasis mime)

I want to thank Room 641-A for all their past outstanding contributions to this site, and this latest in particular. I know I for one will be including a parenthetical emphasis mime in my mind to all future [real] events reported here, to drive home the tragicomic weight of each item. Thanks!!

Wish there was a parenthetical emphasis mime emoji.
posted by riverlife at 1:37 PM on August 11 [7 favorites]


As horrible as the effects of nuclear weapons are, they are almost entirely short-term.

That really depends on the specific nature of the nuclear weapon being used.
posted by dilaudid at 1:38 PM on August 11 [9 favorites]


It's worth noting that most of the commentary about North Korea nuking America is working toward the Trump regime's ends. The expert belief is that there is actually little to no threat from North Korean nukes to any US territory.

But it does fit into the Trump regime's narrative of crisis. "We need to attack now, the preparing to launch nukes at us! "

So remember that when you make Cuban Missile Crisis comparisons, or post blast rings superimposed over cities.
posted by happyroach at 1:38 PM on August 11 [27 favorites]


As horrible as the effects of nuclear weapons are, they are almost entirely short-term.

I need to do a bit more digging into this question, but I think it's instructive both to look at how quickly Hiroshima and Nagasaki recovered from the blasts and subsequent radiation, and to recognize that today's nuclear weapons are probably about as different from those bombs as white phosphorus is from a Revolutionary War cannonball.
posted by Existential Dread at 1:40 PM on August 11 [44 favorites]


So nuclear war is bad and intentionally detonating nuclear weapons in inhabited areas is bad, but

The buildings that are standing are not going to be toxic to inhabit for the next few generations.

You know people actually live in the blast zones of Hiroshima and Nagasaki? And have done for decades?
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 1:40 PM on August 11 [3 favorites]


I'm having trouble expressing how wrongheaded it is to believe that the effect of a nuclear weapon on an American city would be roughly equivalent to one hurricane.

Fair enough. Even one such weapon used in anger is one too many, with wide ranging, long lasting and devastating effects.
posted by ZeusHumms at 1:40 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


"Fallout only lasts months not centuries" is not a good reason for nuclear war.
posted by Talez at 1:41 PM on August 11 [25 favorites]


That really depends on the specific nature of the nuclear weapon being used.

True. Also, death is pretty permanent.

Here's a handy app based on the google maps api where you can play around testing the effects of various types and sizes of nuclear explosions on American cities! Fun for the whole family.

A small 7-10kt weapon of the sort NK can produce airbursting over Los Angeles would instantly kill on the order of 70,000 and injure another few hundred thousand. The eventual deaths from radiation would add to the total.
posted by Justinian at 1:43 PM on August 11 [9 favorites]


Always remember: the Republicans in Congress could end this farce at any time. Bill Clinton lied in a minor way about sexual relations and they impeached him. Donald Trump's done all this and has not so far done anything worthy of impeachment in their eyes.

This needs to be the death knell for all Republican influence. Anyone supporting them should be considered automatically suspect, either as a shill, a tool, or just willfully ignorant.
posted by JHarris at 1:44 PM on August 11 [142 favorites]


how many nuclear warhead detonations would it take to stop the US economically and politically? Where would they have to be?

Damn few. It's more a case of "how many are available?"

One in DC when congress is in session; destroy the effective chain of command. One in NY to take out the stock exchange & east coast news industry. One in Mountain View to take out Silicon Valley - if Google goes down, the entire world's communications are disrupted. One in LA to kill the rest of the news & entertainment industry. Those last three have the advantage of taking out huge transit cities as well. (Mountain View isn't SF; a bomb that took out MV wouldn't directly destroy SF's shipping... but the surrounding chaos should work fine for that. Otherwise, throw a few conventional bombs at SF to take out shipping and the entire bay area's transit nexus.)

After that, target major airport cities & non-duplicated industries until you run out of bombs.
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 1:45 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


It also envisioned staging a phony incident that could be used to start a war. A small group of Iraqi exiles would be flown into Iraq by helicopter to seize an isolated military base near the Saudi border.

When Nazi Germany wanted an excuse to invade Poland in 1939, they sent some guys dressed in Polish uniforms (and the bodies of concentration camp prisoners wearing Polish uniforms that they'd killed) to stage attacks on German buildings along the border. The plan's name? Operation Himmler.

I don't think we should be copying the Nazis.
posted by kirkaracha at 1:46 PM on August 11 [3 favorites]


My brother the career Foreign Service diplomat is incredibly upset about Trump's so-called joke thanking Putin for kicking diplomats out. Those people are hardworking idealists who sacrifice a considerable amount to represent the USA, and the casual remark was deeply hurtful.

It's almost as if he could handle everything else before this, but this took the cake.
posted by Peach at 1:46 PM on August 11 [104 favorites]


Always remember: the Republicans in Congress could end this farce at any time. Bill Clinton lied in a minor way about sexual relations and they impeached him. Donald Trump's done all this and has not so far done anything worthy of impeachment in their eyes.

It feels a little like a giant game of chicken between Trump and McConnell.
posted by ZeusHumms at 1:47 PM on August 11


Let me rephrase myself this way: how many nuclear warhead detonations would it take to stop the US economically and politically? Where would they have to be?

There are so many variables. What kind of bomb, how well does it work, at what altitude (or depth) does it explode, etc.
posted by Bee'sWing at 1:48 PM on August 11 [1 favorite]


Didn't our government make up a bunch of bullshit in order to justify a war rather recently?

I mean, that Pandora's Box already been opened.
posted by tivalasvegas at 1:49 PM on August 11 [3 favorites]


how many nuclear warhead detonations would it take to stop the US economically and politically? Where would they have to be?

9/11 pulled us to the right for 15 years and counting. I don't see how our democracy survives even a single strike, given this environment. Even if it's outside the U.S.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 1:49 PM on August 11 [50 favorites]


Happyroach: It's worth noting that most of the commentary about North Korea nuking America is working toward the Trump regime's ends. The expert belief is that there is actually little to no threat from North Korean nukes to any US territory.

But it does fit into the Trump regime's narrative of crisis. "We need to attack now, the preparing to launch nukes at us! "


I think this is a very good point and easy to forget. Seeping Baby Man* is now about as popular as norovirus outside his hardcore base. And he's been losing so much that we're all getting tired of losing - no ACA repeal, protests against banning trans people from military service, protests against Muslim bans, sanctuary cities being openly defiant, Jerry Brown, Jay Inslee and other blue-state governors keeping the Paris climate pact despite what the feds think or do, and Robert Mueller zeroing in on Trump's associates. (When a well-off white guy gets a no-knock search warrant, you KNOW he had to do something wrong.)

So what is there to do for Seeping Baby Man to do but gin up an Enemy and a Righteous War to make himself look good and maybe even boost his popularity a bit? It worked for Dubya, until it didn't.

*courtesy of this FPP
posted by Rosie M. Banks at 1:49 PM on August 11 [9 favorites]


[I know nuclear weapons are a thing and some very dumb powerful people have been implicitly chatting them up lately but (a) we've had a bunch of discussion about cold war flashbacks and nuke speculation in the previous thread and (b) aren't gonna benefit from further elaborate nuclear apocalypse speculation in here. Please consider not making that a recurring line of chatter.]
posted by cortex at 1:49 PM on August 11 [45 favorites]


You know people actually live in the blast zones of Hiroshima and Nagasaki? And have done for decades?

The populations of Hiroshima and Nagasaki now have among the highest rates of liver cancer in the world.

Not all toxins are quick.
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 1:50 PM on August 11 [36 favorites]


I don't think a strike would have the same galvanizing and unifying effect that 9/11 did. This government is already hated by at least half the population and distrusted by a good chunk more, with a solid minority of fervent nihilists supporting it.
posted by tivalasvegas at 1:51 PM on August 11 [3 favorites]


He's apparently still using that old-ass Android that every security service on the planet no doubt has access to.

Do we know he's the one making all the tweets? It would be kind of funny (not funny) if he only occasionally uses twitter and someone is MITM-ing the whole thing.
posted by ctmf at 1:52 PM on August 11


It's really hard to tell them apart
posted by growabrain at 1:53 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


Trump has been rich enough his whole life to have never heard the word "no". If someone says that to him, he fires them and hires someone who won't. Until, eventually, they do, and then the cycle repeats.

I honestly don't think this is the case. The Washington Post article about his childhood makes that clear, I think. I mean, I'm sure that being wealthy didn't help curb his sadistic tendencies, but from early on he was a) a little sadist and b) completely comfortable with rejecting corrections as to what he claimed was reality.

His dad tried to sort of beat it out of him by sending him to military school, but it seems like that experience, while brutal, refined his defining personality traits.

And there's some weird shit going on where he seems like he's either demented and/or on coke, and I don't know what's going on there. But I think wealth enabled him to shit on people throughout his life and led him to where he was today, a failed businessman/reality TV star/POTUS.

It's like if he was poor he'd have stuck to abusing his kids/lovers/people at the local bar, but oh well.
posted by angrycat at 1:54 PM on August 11 [12 favorites]


And no matter what happens, you're looking at tens of thousands of South Korean civilian casualties.

I linked OPLAN 5027 just two threads ago, so: the NK artillery currently trained on Seoul alone would account for half a million South Korean civilians and 50K US troops in the first several hours. With 12,000 emplacements to target there is no pre-emptive strike strategy that significantly reduces that estimate.

today's nuclear weapons are probably about as different from those bombs as white phosphorus is from a Revolutionary War cannonball.

This is true for the US, not NK. To date NK has tested mostly gun-style weapons along the lines of Little Boy. Their 30KT yield test was probably their first successful implosion weapon. They're a long, long way off from Tellar-Ulam devices or anything remotely comparable.

On preview, just saw Cortex asking for us to tamp down on this aspect, so: for further reading, Ctrl-F BringerTom's comments in the past couple threads, and the recent non-#potus45 NK nuclear thread.
posted by Ryvar at 1:56 PM on August 11 [6 favorites]


It's really hard to tell them apart

They both look like characters that could be played by Mike Myers under several inches of rubber prosthetics.
posted by Strange Interlude at 1:58 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


Wish there was a parenthetical emphasis mime emoji.


:] :[

Senators and Congressional critters won't answer phones? Fax them daily.
Dear [name]:

1. Impeach
2. Resign
3. Write your book
4: Profit!

Sincerely,

[name]
posted by tilde at 1:59 PM on August 11 [12 favorites]


Tammy Duckworth was on Late Night and noted that essentially Trump is trying to match crazy with crazy against a guy who executed his own uncle with an anti-aircraft gun.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 1:59 PM on August 11 [109 favorites]


how many nuclear warhead detonations

I understand the desire to discuss the spectre of nuclear warfare, and to understand the potential consequences of the use of weapons, but I would make a heartfelt entreaty that if there's a general desire to have that discussion on Metafilter (and people have suggested we should not, then at the very least someone should make an FPP about that -- it's definitely an interesting topic! -- because as a practical concern, the only way North America will be attacked with a nuclear weapon is if some non-North Korean state does so: the same reports that are being cited about North Korea putting a warhead on an ICBM note that those ICBM's are not actually capable of delivering a missile to a target without burning up on atmospheric reëntry, and likely will not be so capable for six months to a year (at best). Secondly, 'capable of' is not the same thing as 'tested and definitely actually working;' and 'leaked reports' of stats having capabilities may be in error -- viz, Iraq/aluminum tubes/yellowcake.

And then, politically, North Korea has NO REASON to ACTUALLY USE nuclear weapons. The only reason some other state would have to use nuclear weapons is if the US uses them first; so I would argue, politically, this is entirely up to the United States, and for us to believe Trump intends to use them requires us to believe Trump's bluster.

This would be my argument for calm: in what other case would we trust Trump's promises? Unless we trust him generally (and I for one do not), we should not take him at his word here either.

By all means, write to your representatives and exhort them to pressure Trump away from military action in Korea; act politically as if he was telling the truth. But remember that he probably isn't.
posted by cjelli at 2:00 PM on August 11 [19 favorites]


I'm sure there will be stories on this when it's over, but Omarosa Manigault is speaking at the National Association of Black Journalists, and it doesn't sound like it's going great. She said "I fight on the front lines every day" to groans from the audience, some have turned their backs on her and others have walked out, the conference organizer and the moderator got into an argument about what the panel is there for, Omarosa walked off the stage, now it's over.

I hope there's footage of all this.
posted by zachlipton at 2:01 PM on August 11 [51 favorites]


The question of whether North Korea's nuclear capability is being exaggerated or not is essentially irrelevant to the case for war. Nobody doubts that North Korea is working towards developing a nuclear ICBM. Nobody doubts that North Korea is capable of decimating Seoul and its many US citizens today using conventional weapons. The question is, are we willing to accept the likely annihilation of Seoul in exchange for preventing North Korea from developing a nuclear ICBM, and are we willing to do this while the US Commander-in-Chief is a highly confused narcissistic racist con-artist with the leadership skills of the mean kid from Toy Story?
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 2:01 PM on August 11 [15 favorites]


Tammy Duckworth was on Late Night and noted that essentially Trump is trying to match crazy with crazy against a guy who executed his own uncle with an anti-aircraft gun.

This is both absolutely true and extraordinarily scary... because I'm not 100% convinced Trump wouldn't win.
posted by Justinian at 2:02 PM on August 11


Who remembers this?

And then this?

Feels chillingly relevant.
posted by exlotuseater at 2:02 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


I really hope the Mueller investigation doesn't end up taking down a lot of little fish and maybe one or two bigger sacrificial lambs while Trump and his inner circle get away.

I remain (very cautiously) optimistic about Mueller's investigation. He scored a conviction against John Gotti. His team includes experts in investigating, thwarting, and prosecuting exactly the sort of mobster tactics deployed by the campaign and administration. And they are all seasoned professionals obviously not in this for the money (several took pay cuts to join the team). All this commitment and experience is being brought to bear against incompetent criminals loyal only to themselves whose legal defense teams will bail at the first sign of blowback and/or uncertain bill payment.

I need a tiny sliver of hope right now, and since news of the Manafort raid broke, this is the one I have chosen: That Mueller and his team will catch and flip smaller targets until they have enough to bring down the bigger ones. That they will be canny enough and disciplined enough to let the big targets think the heat is off their backs, to imagine that the bus under which they threw their lieutenants is not coming around the corner for another pass. That by the time they spring the trap, it will be too late for any would-be Teflon Dons to wriggle out.

This process will be slower than any of us would like, but what little I've seen so far gives me hope.
posted by Fish, fish, are you doing your duty? at 2:03 PM on August 11 [27 favorites]


It worked for Dubya, until it didn't.

The big difference here will be Dubya was reacting to us being suddenly attacked on the homeland. His jump in popularity was because we were attacked, and it then immediately started falling.

Went from low 50s to 90, then fell back to high 50s, then Iraq when he just went up to 70, then fell again to 50 and we captured Saddam and he went up to like 63 percent, and then just kept falling until he ended up around 32 percent approval rating when he left.

If Trump decided to preemptively strike, the math is completely different. 1) his approval rating is already deeply underwater, 2) we would not be surprise attacked, instead we would be seen as the aggressor by basically every nation, 3) if Trump attacks with nukes, the insane death and destruction would be extremely shocking which would also keep any popularity gains down. If NK attacks first, he'll still be blamed for goading it on. It's just seems like such an asinine strategy.

It's just an incredibly stupid strategy if they think they're gonna have a Bush-like blossoming if they go to war.
posted by tittergrrl at 2:04 PM on August 11 [13 favorites]


Well folks, it's after 5pm Eastern so I guess we can call it a wrap on Nuclear Crisis week

that's how this works, right?
posted by tivalasvegas at 2:05 PM on August 11 [34 favorites]


This administration has made some mistakes but scheduling Nuclear Crisis Week is definitely one of them
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 2:10 PM on August 11 [28 favorites]


None of us should be surprised at this point by Cheeto's fathomless ignorance and incompetence, but the "military is not actually fully in place" link is truly astounding.

The President of the United States neither understands nor cares that intercontinental war is a vastly complex undertaking which requires months of planning, preparation, and logistics (preferably in consultation with, y'know, the military). And yet here he is, threatening action that our military is not in a position to deliver. You have to wonder how much goodwill this is costing him among the brass – and among the troops who will be sent into battle with their pants down if Trump decides to make good on his threats.

The danger of a nuclear strike on American soil – even if it's a small bomb – isn't just the casualties and economic damage. The fallout that terrifies me in that scenario isn't radioactive; it's political. Because I can think of no more perfect way to convince the electorate to rally behind and hand unchecked power to Trump. Because once nuclear weapons are in play, it fundamentally alters the strategic calculations of every country on Earth. Because as tense as the American political situation already is, Cleveland being vaporized by a nuke could send us into a downward spiral of panic, recrimination, and rash actions.

I'll stop catastrophizing now, but consider that 9/11 killed just 3,000 people, and destroyed a handful of buildings. Now consider what a single nuke can do.
posted by escape from the potato planet at 2:12 PM on August 11 [27 favorites]


In the interest of further calming down runaway speculation, I highly recommend this Mattis interview for anybody who missed it.

The man is far too bloodthirsty in general for anybody calling themselves a liberal, let alone a pacifist, true - you don't earn the nickname "Mad Dog" for statesmanlike behavior. But he's also deeply intelligent, well-read on military history, and not the kind of person that kicks off World War III deliberately or by accident. Given how Congress and most of the establishment Republicans feel about Trump, I'm not sure whether attempting to force Mattis's hand with threats of firing would result in expedited impeachment, 25th amendment removal, or just a plain old-fashioned coup, but it's not "D) None of the above."

I'm not suggesting it's a good thing to be relying on our generals, but you go to prevent war with the Secretary of Defense you have, not the one you might want or wish to have at a later time.
posted by Ryvar at 2:15 PM on August 11 [10 favorites]


Well folks, it's after 5pm Eastern so I guess we can call it a wrap on Nuclear Crisis week

So much of the late day breaking news comes out around five or six o'clock PST, so there's still time.
posted by Room 641-A at 2:20 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


National Treasure Alexandra Petri, WaPo: Americans can sleep well at night
And here I am trying to go to sleep. Maybe a glass of warm milk (from the local milk people?) … no this is no good, I am thinking about the President again.

Maybe I’d better walk around the room a little before I try to fall asleep. (There are fires raging in the Arctic Circle.) Maybe I’ll drink some water. Maybe I’ll lie awake alternating between wondering whether the faint noise coming from just down the hall is an intruder, breathing heavily, and whether the alert currently flashing on my phone is the announcement that the Trump administration has finally, after careful thought and deliberation, gotten rid of Los Angeles.

I spend most evenings doing my best impression of Lady Macbeth (the walking around panicking part, not the urging my spouse to murder people part).
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 2:22 PM on August 11 [8 favorites]


ErisLordFredom: Damn few. It's more a case of "how many are available?"

Mountain View shutting down doesn't shut down the internet. Heck, it doesn't even shut down Google. They have data centers all over the world hooked together with the largest known non-governmental private network in the world. It would definitely slow down the pace of development and recovery but things would keep chugging along nicely for quite awhile. You have to remember that the Internet was designed from the beginning to sustain nuclear attacks. The basic protocols are incredibly robust in the face of failure, so as long as there's *some* path between points A and B packets will get through.

Your point about shipping hubs is interesting but SF is not that important of a port anymore. Now, if something were to simultaneously shut down the ports of Long Beach, Los Angeles, and New York/New Jersey, that would effectively stop international trade for the continental US.
posted by zrail at 2:24 PM on August 11 [6 favorites]


The frustrating thing is that Tump's administration seem to be trying to calm things down, but he keeps saying dangerous, dumbass things. After the "fire and fury" thing Tillerson and the rest tried to calm things down, but then Trump just says something worse. If he would just shut the fuck up it seems like the adults can work through this crisis, but he won't.

This remains relevant:
WaPo: The president shat himself.

White House: The president would never shit himself.

Trump: I SHAT MYSELF ON PURPOSE

Every. Fucking. Day.
posted by Sangermaine at 2:24 PM on August 11 [147 favorites]


Well folks, it's after 5pm Eastern so I guess we can call it a wrap on Nuclear Crisis week

It is, however, 6am Pyongyang time, so, y'know, Kim Jong-Un's alarm is probably going off right now, and he's probably about to open up CNN on his iPad and see the latest crazy Trump rant. Oh lord save us all from these maniacs.
posted by dis_integration at 2:25 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


If (big, big if) Trump uses a nuclear weapon against a country that has not attcked us, then I hope he is tried in The Hague for crimes against humanity. Would that be possible because I will do whatever I can to make sure that happens.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 2:25 PM on August 11 [19 favorites]


So Omarosa was just booed off stage at a panel at the NABJ conference. The panel was called "Black and Blue: Raising our Sons, Protecting Our Communities." Apparently some thought she was qualified to participate because her dad and brother were both killed. Asked to explain or defend Trumps policies she demurred, told Ed Gordon he was being "aggressive" (rip,irony) and refused to disclose "confidential convos" she had with the president. To diffuse the tension they put on a video, which unfortunately was of the president giving his law and order speech about paddy wagons and roughing suspects up. Shit got weirder from there and I cant wait/am horrified to read the non-twitter descriptions of this scene.
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 2:27 PM on August 11 [13 favorites]


How cool that Kim Jong-Un is waking up just as Donald Trump is sundowning! I hope Jong-Un isn't the type to be cranky just after he wakes up. Such great timing.
posted by witchen at 2:28 PM on August 11 [5 favorites]


Would that be possible because I will do whatever I can to make sure that happens.

The US is not a participant of the International Criminal Court, so no it's not possible. Clinton signed the Rome Statute but it never got submitted to the Senate for ratification.
posted by zrail at 2:30 PM on August 11




I hope Jong-Un isn't the type to be cranky just after he wakes up.

Is it too much to hope/dread that Kim Jong-un gets a Twitter account?
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 2:32 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


Isn't a huge thing with the NABJ Omarosa insanity is that they asked somebody from the DOJ to rep the Trump admin and so Trump sends the one of two black people in his orbit, not somebody from the DOJ, and also an insane person?

I guess Ben Carson was busy.
posted by angrycat at 2:33 PM on August 11 [19 favorites]


Steve Bannon Said He Learned to Fear Muslims When He Visited Pakistan. Except He Was Probably in Hong Kong.

[Intercept, but Peter Haas hasn't shown any of their pro-Putin taint that I can tell]
posted by T.D. Strange at 2:36 PM on August 11 [12 favorites]


Well folks, it's after 5pm Eastern so I guess we can call it a wrap on Nuclear Crisis week

In Trump's world, this would have been called something like Nuclear Safety Week, or World Peace Week, or some such.
posted by dirigibleman at 2:37 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


Here's some video from Omarosa's NABJ panel (starts during the video for about a minute). The moderator (Ed Gordon, who stepped in at the last minute after others pulled out) tells her she's not going to be able to railroad this and that she doesn't get to come here as a representative of the White House expecting to not answer questions about Trump. She wants people to "get to learn about me" and wants to talk about her personal story instead of being asked about Trump. Gordon keeps pressing her on what she told Trump after he declared the police should assault suspects, and she continues to refuse to answer.

Here's another clip (and part 2) that shows how heated this got.
posted by zachlipton at 2:37 PM on August 11 [26 favorites]


I will fight to the death in support of the hypothesis "Season 04 was the BEST season"

Treehouse of Horror V: Time and Punishment

It's the best version of Ray Bradbury's A Sound of Thunder ever created.

Season 6, Episode 6. Air date: October 30, 1994
posted by zarq at 2:39 PM on August 11 [7 favorites]


i like dan carlin. if you like him, or think you might, here is 6 hours of 'wtf nuclear weapons are fucked up and bullshit': The Destroyer of Worlds.
posted by j_curiouser at 2:39 PM on August 11 [8 favorites]


So this idea is back. Bloomberg, Manchin Is Said to Emerge as Possible Pick for Energy Department
Some White House and Republican officials are exploring the idea of putting West Virginia Democratic Senator Joe Manchin in charge of the Energy Department, according to four people familiar with the discussions, a move that could boost President Donald Trump’s stalled legislative agenda.

If Manchin were offered and accepted the position, that would allow West Virginia’s Governor Jim Justice -- a newly minted Republican -- to appoint a GOP successor and bring the party a vote closer in the Senate to being able to repeal Obamacare. The idea is in the early stages of consideration, and it’s unclear whether it has support within the administration, according to the people, who described the conversations under condition of anonymity.

A spokesman for Manchin declined to say whether the senator would take the Energy secretary job -- currently held by former Texas Governor Rick Perry -- if offered.

“Senator Manchin has not had any recent conversations with the Administration about the Secretary of Energy position. He remains committed to serving the people of West Virginia,” said Jonathan Kott.

Manchin, who faces a tough re-election battle in 2018, was considered for the post after Trump won election in November. His nomination fell through in part because Trump wouldn’t assure him he could pick his own staff, according to two people familiar with the staff selections, who described them on condition of anonymity.
posted by zachlipton at 2:42 PM on August 11 [3 favorites]


Caddyshack III: Bunker Mentality
The gang of golf-course employees must persuade the vacationing President not to initiate nuclear war, with hilarious results
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 2:43 PM on August 11 [14 favorites]


Omarosa is one of Trump's most aggressive flying monkeys, stirring up trouble & conflict wherever she goes. This is clearly what she wanted to happen.
posted by scalefree at 2:49 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


This is getting really weird: 'Sonic attack': Canadian diplomat in Cuba also suffered hearing damage

Happy Friday: For better or worse, here is Al Franken and Tom Davis as scary-good Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, ca.1983. Senate hearings will never be the same.
posted by Room 641-A at 2:52 PM on August 11 [15 favorites]


I've been shocked, since the election, at learning how little even educated, engaged acquaintances younger than, say, late 30s know about nuclear war and nuclear weapons.

I think part of it is that we haven't been exposed to the information about nuclear weapons except in vague ways.

There is a reel that plays in my head when nuclear bombs come up. But it's not the usual mushroom cloud photos. It's video of on-the-ground carnage and destruction. I won't link here because it is possible derail though it's nonfiction and relevant absolutely atrocious nightmare fodder. Footage of the victims of Hiroshima. Burnt limbs, fused eyelids, and on and on.

I think back to a tour of a building that used to be in either Hiroshima or Nagasaki. (The building had been relocated to an outdoor museum of historic buildings.) In the stairway there is a faint shadow, the shadow of someone who was literally vaporized when the bomb hit.

I remember watching a show/documentary where the film crew visits an American high school discussion about Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The students are pretty much unanimous about "the bomb was a good thing"...Until the film crew asks how much they know about what the effects look like. They bring in an album of photos of the aftermath and the injuries to the victims (I can't even describe them here because it is so horrific). Students start crying, and the opinions are much more mixed in the discussion afterwards.

Photographs and videos have a way of engaging people in a way that talk doesn't. You can grow up hearing lectures, rhetoric, war survivor stories, history docs etc but it's the imagery that most vividly sears into your memory. You can argue about nuclear war in terms of economic impact and philosophical justifications and so on, but sometimes it's seeing what it looked like--and what it would look like if it were to happen to YOU--that persuades people. Pic/video also fits in more easily with tweet-sized attention spans. So maybe more of us need to see this stuff to decide whether this is a good idea.
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 2:54 PM on August 11 [27 favorites]


Tammy Duckworth was on Late Night and noted that essentially Trump is trying to match crazy with crazy against a guy who executed his own uncle with an anti-aircraft gun.
Trump only blocked the healthcare for his infant nephew w cerebral palsy, who would have died without it, but had the bad luck to be related to Trump and in the way on some of Older Trump's inheritance in the late 90s.
So NK anti-uncle crazy v good old fashioned US anti-nephew pettiness.
posted by rc3spencer at 2:59 PM on August 11 [12 favorites]


The effect of one nuclear bomb on the US economy is probably equivalent to one hurricane.

there's no predicting the psychological effect, though - sockin'inthefreeworld just talked about the horrific documentaries that exist that they don't want to link to or describe - but what happens when the whole world is seeing similar scenes on live tv?

what happens if a considerable portion of the population panics and decides to evacuate the cities and those in surrounding areas decide they don't want them to?

what happens if instead of unifying the people behind their government, people decide to protest a government they believe is about to kill everyone?

even if it was just confined to korea, the effects of this worldwide are impossible to predict, but the world will never be the same even if ww3 is avoided
posted by pyramid termite at 3:01 PM on August 11 [8 favorites]


Manchin Is Said to Emerge as Possible Pick for Energy Department

Unlike Rick Perry, I'm guessing Manchin is smart enough to know that the Energy Department has almost nothing to do with coal. That's primarily the Department of Interior's job.
posted by JackFlash at 3:02 PM on August 11 [1 favorite]


Oh, the Energy Department supposedly does "Clean Coal" research, but that has turned out to be a big nothing.
posted by JackFlash at 3:05 PM on August 11 [1 favorite]


Yeah. Nothing Manchin has done has given the particular impression he wants to trade being in charge of nuclear weapon-related stuff for allowing Republicans to cut Medicaid.
posted by zachlipton at 3:07 PM on August 11 [5 favorites]


Also, Trump would just instantly fire Manchin anyway, given that firing people is his only effective tool of statecraft.
posted by J.K. Seazer at 3:10 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


Tillerson, Trump, and Nicki Haley are on a stage and Trump is talking. When someone asks a question, she looks engaged. When Trump starts talking, the look on her face changes to "I've made a huge mistake."
posted by Room 641-A at 3:10 PM on August 11 [15 favorites]


This is the moment that Trump really became president.

This is the moment he's craved ever since the idea of running occurred to him.
posted by davebush at 3:10 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


I've been shocked, since the election, at learning how little even educated, engaged acquaintances younger than, say, late 30s know about nuclear war and nuclear weapons.

FUCKING millennials. alright kids, quit snapchatting your participation trophies for a minute and listen up, Uncle pbo is gonna Gen-Xplain nuclear bombs to you in terms you can understand

[slices avocado in half]

alright so the pit represents the primary stage, containing the fission bomb that sets off the secondary explosion
posted by prize bull octorok at 3:10 PM on August 11 [124 favorites]


@lesleyclark: "I'm not going to rule out a military option," Trump says of Venezuela. "We have many options, including military options."
He also knows that "Venezuela is not very far away."

He says, while also threatening "big big trouble in North Korea" if "anything happens to Guam" and boasting "I'm not sure that anybody's done what we've done in a 6-month period."
posted by zachlipton at 3:10 PM on August 11 [7 favorites]


Our best hope may be if Hulu decides to do a remake of Threads.

Sincerely, Poochie Goring
posted by asteria at 3:14 PM on August 11 [12 favorites]


Remote Diagnoses: The national security establishment versus the “madmen” (N+1)
English-speaking analysts are prone to understanding the behavior of the DPRK through the lens of Richard Nixon’s “madman theory,” a strategy the President adopted in 1969 as he sought an advantageous end to the Vietnam War. Following the theories of the Cold War economist Thomas Schelling, Nixon adopted an approach called Giant Lance, aiming to convince the Soviet Union that an American nuclear strike on Moscow or Hanoi was imminent. By demonstrating that his behavior was not subject to ordinary rational calculation, Nixon hoped to achieve a superior bargaining position: “I call it the Madman Theory, Bob. I want the North Vietnamese to believe that I’ve reached the point that I might do anything to stop the war,” he told H. R. Haldeman. But the Soviets were not fooled: it was not easy to convince them that a world leader would truly be willing to act beyond material motivations and constraints.2

Instead it is American foreign policy doctrine that continues to divide the world into rational actors, typically NATO countries, and irrational ones, typically not long for this world: Saddam Hussein, Muammar Gaddafi, the Kims. In this worldview it is not a set of threats or behaviors that makes a leader a madman—it is the determination to maintain independence from American empire, often through the pursuit of nuclear weapons. In such a framework it is always the advocates of continual pressure, threats, and sanctions that appear the most rational, for they are the ones that maintain vigilance against uncontrollable madmen.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 3:17 PM on August 11 [9 favorites]


"I'm not going to rule out a military option," Trump says of [LITERALLY EVERY COUNTRY]. "We have many options, including military options."

Christ I didn't even realize Venezuela was on his radar, why are we talking about military options against Venezuela? He's opening up his bullshit on too many fronts.
posted by jason_steakums at 3:19 PM on August 11 [26 favorites]


An excellent point has been raised in these threads several times previously that what Trump and his supporters/enablers are fundamentally doing is subjecting the rest of us (in the United States and across the world) to an ongoing, escalating background level of trauma, to the kind of built-in traumatic psychological state a family that has an abusive/sociopathic/narcissistic parent running it endures/suffers from over time.

For this reason I have begun calling him President Donald Trauma, and I think it's become more than appropriate for that to become his monicker--heck, I'm saying officially, right now. Not so much with the Trumo, nor Trimp, [], etc. (perfectly reasonable, cromulent diminutions), but: Trauma. It's what he comes from, it's what he traffics in, and it's what he causes everyone and everything with which he comes into even indirect contact. Perhaps we've allowed his ascent because he's a projection of part of the overall American unconsciousness (or even human unconsciousness), generations of trauma pushed/pulled into consciousness so to be consciously dealt with. Perhaps we've needed to have the archetypical embodiment of wealth, privilege, Christendom (per Kierkegaard), and patriarchy in order to properly understand and surmount them, or perhaps he is simply a giant malignant lumbering narcasshole who figured out how to hack democracy with one weird trick. (Maybe he's something else entirely--theses on what he is/represents will after all likely fill generations of university history departments' future archives--yes I'm an optimist, I use the word 'future'.) In any case, he is decidedly President Trauma.

Calling him what he is, what he does, will I hope more quickly help us in one manner or another discern consciously how we can and will productively move forward. Past Trauma. Past Put-on. Past allowing our vast selves to be "led" by repugnant, trauma-inducing, nihilistic fear and death lovers. Impeach Trauma!
posted by riverlife at 3:20 PM on August 11 [37 favorites]




alright so the pit represents the primary stage, containing the fission bomb that sets off the secondary explosion

Actually, if you look at a diagram of a Teller-Ulam H-bomb, it more closely resembles a Hitachi Magic Wand vibrator. The ball-shaped head is the atomic trigger, and the handle is the fusion-boosted-fission secondary. There's a little gap between them because the radiant energy from the fission trigger has to compress and fully react the secondary before the hydrodynamic blast wave from the primary arrives and blows it apart. {insert orgasm joke here}

And after Cortex's plea, that's as nuclear as I'll get for awhile. Except that yeah, if you manage to hit a city with one (a nontrivial task from half way around the world) then even a small nuke will kill more people than any US-landing hurricane ever has.
posted by Bringer Tom at 3:22 PM on August 11 [9 favorites]


"I'm not going to rule out a military option," Trump says of breakfast.

"I'm not going to rule out a military option," Trump says of the concept of shame.

"I'm not going to rule out a military option," Trump says of that chair over in the corner.
posted by jason_steakums at 3:26 PM on August 11 [35 favorites]


Uh, I think you mean Teller-Ulam "back massager"
posted by Molesome at 3:28 PM on August 11 [33 favorites]


Venezuela's our neighbor?
posted by kirkaracha at 3:30 PM on August 11 [1 favorite]


"Madman Theory" seems wildly flawed. If your opponent isn't rational, what incentive is there for you to supplicate them? For all you know, they might take a shot at you no matter what.
posted by The Notorious SRD at 3:31 PM on August 11 [6 favorites]


Is this stuff so hard? Is he really such a fucking wildcard that he can't even be steered? Or are intelligent people so unwilling to work with him that he's only got idiots and fanatics willing to try to steer that ship?

He can't be steered. You don't really believe that level of obstinacy and stupidity is possible, at least not past a certain professional level, but I used to work for someone like this. You'd come in one day and Boss had fixed on some random new idea and you had to replan your whole day around it. There were intelligent people on our team, but even the best manipulator could only steer Boss so much, and anyway intelligence only means so much when it's being applied to some dead-end vanity project.

I think Pogo_Fuzzybut and angrycat are both correct: Little Donny Two-Scoops was a sadistic reality-denying scumbag from the jump, but the minute he had enough money to do so he built a world in which nobody could tell him "No" ever again and lived in it until he forgot it was a theme park instead of an actual kingdom. I think that's one reason the presidency irks him so much. People have started telling him "no" again, at a time in his life when he had lost any ability he may have had to pretend to inhabit a reality with other subjective actors (like Senators voting against the AHCA), and especially not right after he'd spent a year basking in the adulation of his Main Street parades (to continue the theme park metaphor). And now a bunch of assholes who were supposed to scurry around doing his bidding aren't, and all those actual and implied Nos threaten the giant fragile ego edifice he's built around himself, as a Big Tough Guy Who Makes Offers You Can't Refuse, and the giant fragile ego edifice must be protected at all costs.
posted by Fish, fish, are you doing your duty? at 3:33 PM on August 11 [54 favorites]


Metafilter: a theme park instead of an actual kingdom
posted by Bringer Tom at 3:36 PM on August 11 [6 favorites]


Sorry, have we discussed the reports that China has said that "It Will Stay Neutral If US Acts in Self-Defense Following DPRK First Strike, Will Go to War With US If US Strikes First"

I don't know whether I feel relieved or terrified

I don't know anything anymore
posted by prefpara at 3:36 PM on August 11 [40 favorites]


China wins most sane, least warlike. Unfortunately....
posted by Artw at 3:40 PM on August 11 [6 favorites]


All I wanted was a meal. All I wanted was to get away from the threat of annihilation for half an hour. But apparently this is life now.

Okay, this feeling right here? Every Gen-X'er you know was going through that in high school, constantly. We're all sitting here like "*sigh* here we go again."

I don't fear DPRK. I fear Trump.

I think this is where we all are, frankly....
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 3:42 PM on August 11 [28 favorites]


The look on Nikki Haley's face in this video...

Add Amb. Haley to the list of people who can't hide their bewilderment and unease while Trump or one of his remoras is revealing the depths of their ignorance, incompetence, and malice. Is there a supercut of showing eg, the WH press corps, Buzz Aldrin, Haley, etc?

Donny is not only out of his element, he's out of the fucking periodic table altogether.
posted by lord_wolf at 3:42 PM on August 11 [51 favorites]


I don't fear DPRK. I fear Trump.

As a long-term resident of Seoul, the perennial target of enough conventional weapons to kill everyone I know and love, I agree with this. The DPRK is not a threat. Not a threat at all.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 3:44 PM on August 11 [20 favorites]


In this worldview it is not a set of threats or behaviors that makes a leader a madman—it is the determination to maintain independence from American empire, often through the pursuit of nuclear weapons.

So true, but I'm pretty sure that's not the only common and certainly not the most obvious shared feature of the leaders the US/Europe typically labels "madmen."

The North Korea situation is nervewracking and stressful, especially for the youngs who weren't around during the Cold War, for which this is all very foreign. And obviously Trump's involvement and the irresponsible news coverage doesn't help any. Plus, y'know, nukes are scary.

But it's also a good idea to interrogate where the outsized fear response to this in some quarters is coming from. Because as cjelli points out upthread, the reality is:
politically, North Korea has NO REASON to ACTUALLY USE nuclear weapons. The only reason some other state would have to use nuclear weapons is if the US uses them first.
Kim Jong-un is neither stupid nor suicidal. In terms of how he has handled his country's nuclear program, there is no real evidence to think he's not a rational actor roughly comparable to a bunch of other autocratic assholes, just a ton of political rhetoric based largely on a host of pernicious racist/Orientalist tropes and biases that influence Americans' perceptions.

Nobody really seems to worry that the most of the other known/suspected nuke-equipped or potentially nuke-having countries are going to suddenly lose their shit and use them, only North Korea, Iran, Pakistan, and India. That's not a coincidence.
posted by FelliniBlank at 3:44 PM on August 11 [9 favorites]


"I'm not going to rule out a military option," Trump says of [LITERALLY EVERY COUNTRY]. "We have many options, including military options."

Christ I didn't even realize Venezuela was on his radar, why are we talking about military options against Venezuela? He's opening up his bullshit on too many fronts.
See, I thought he meant "we're as close to rioting in the streets as in Venezuela, so I'd better get the constitution rewritten ASAP ..." Gah.
posted by tilde at 3:45 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


In that NBC News clip, Nikki Haley looks like someone sitting at a kitchen table staring at a monkey's paw while hearing footsteps dragging up towards the front door.
posted by hanov3r at 3:45 PM on August 11 [39 favorites]


Kim Jong-un is neither stupid nor suicidal. In terms of how he has handled his country's nuclear program, there is no real evidence to think he's not a rational actor roughly comparable to a bunch of other autocratic assholes, just a ton of political rhetoric based largely on a host of pernicious racist/Orientalist tropes and biases that influence Americans' perceptions.

Yep, and the acquisition of nukes is evidence of that rationality, as my link (hopefully) makes clear.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 3:45 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


"scientists discover new element - named trumpium in honor of our president - tests indicate that it is orange and prone to refuse to interact with anything constructively" (fake)
posted by pyramid termite at 3:46 PM on August 11 [7 favorites]


Christ I didn't even realize Venezuela was on his radar, why are we talking about military options against Venezuela?

Maduro called him the weakest US president in 100 years. (link in Spanish, couldn't find the quote in an English outlet)
posted by Fish, fish, are you doing your duty? at 3:48 PM on August 11 [7 favorites]


North Korea, Venezuela, whatever it takes.

Nostradumbass in 2012.

@realDonaldTrump
Polls are starting to look really bad for Obama. Looks like he'll have to start a war or major conflict to win. Don't put it past him!
posted by chris24 at 3:50 PM on August 11 [19 favorites]


"scientists discover new element - named trumpium in honor of our president - tests indicate that it is orange and prone to refuse to interact with anything constructively"

And as related upthread, it's so far out of its element it's off the periodic table entirely.
posted by Bringer Tom at 3:52 PM on August 11 [3 favorites]


@Laura Litvan Trump still going after McConnell, just told reporters he should have taken away committee chairmanships of GOP senators who voted 'no'

The novice to politics is trying to tell the old turtle how to do his job-- that ought to go over very well.


@ Mark Knoller
Asked if VP Pence might run for pres in 2020, "I don't think so," said Pres Trump. Calls Pence a "good ally" and "a good friend of mine."

I'm surprised at how restrained this answer is. I would have expected a much more agressive answer from Trump, possibly even a threat, "He better not, if he knows what's good for him. I'll beat the pants off of him."
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:01 PM on August 11 [19 favorites]


Hah, wow I forgot the President makes all the Senate committee assignments.
posted by rhizome at 4:03 PM on August 11 [10 favorites]


If you want to get away from thinking about war, this week's episode of No One Knows Anything podcast was a very good interview with the Co-founder of Sleeping Giants, the group that works to get companies to pull their ads from Breitbart.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:12 PM on August 11 [6 favorites]


i like dan carlin. if you like him, or think you might, here is 6 hours of 'wtf nuclear weapons are fucked up and bullshit': The Destroyer of Worlds.

Warning, after I listened to this, I became permanently convinced we are all doomed to die in a nuclear apocalypse. And that was months ago. It's excellent, but NOT something to consume if you're trying to calm down.

Also I forgot to do a birthday wish, but it IS my birthday and some late breaking scoop would be nice to distract from the feeling like it might be my LAST. At least my husband is bringing cake.
posted by threeturtles at 4:12 PM on August 11 [17 favorites]


Thing is, Trump has always relished the idea of having nuclear weapons at his disposal, and now he's got them.

As Robert Kelly retweeted earlier today, Trump has spent his entire career making empty threats. Based on past behaviour I think it's unlikely he will follow through on these threats, especially given that he's already saying things that are visibly untrue.

As for the North Korean president, Kelly also points out that his family have been rational enough to stay in power for quite some time (that is really not easy at all) and it would be completely contrary to his self-interest to take actions that would lead directly to South Korea getting nuked.

I mean I personally think Trump would enjoy nuking people, insofar as the concept is real to him. You don't spend decades longing to have that kind of power unless you at least fantasize about using it. However, that doesn't mean he will actually go that far.

I acknowledge that it's a bit different from threatening to sue people and not doing so. Presumably, he didn't carry out threats to sue because he thought he might not win. I mean, if Trump himself thought he could personally escape the effects of a nuclear war he might well go through with it, but I'm pretty sure that even he is not that stupid. You don't get to this point in life without being fairly good at self-preservation.
posted by tel3path at 4:14 PM on August 11 [3 favorites]


If you want to stop thinking about the horrors of war and distract yourself with the horrors of the economy (or just get some knowledge to refute people who parrot DJT's claim that the economy is doing well), This Jacobin podcast with host Suzi Weissman and UCLA's Robert Brenner is outstanding.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 4:16 PM on August 11


If you'd like to learn some things about North Korea from a real expert, I highly recommend Bruce Cumings' North Korea.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 4:19 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


Some good news:

Daily Beast Mueller’s Targets Face Financial Strain
the parting of ways with WilmerHale was also in part because Manafort’s finances are increasingly strained, according to sources familiar with the situation.

“Paul Manafort’s resolve is limitless, but his resources are not,” said a person close to Manafort.

Manafort isn’t the only person facing financial challenges because of the legal costs of responding to Mueller’s probe. Michael Flynn, the retired general and deposed National Security Adviser, is struggling mightily with his mounting legal bills, according to a source familiar with his situation. The expenses has put his family’s finances under significant duress, the source said, and it’s expected he will soon create a legal defense fund to keep from going bankrupt.
Trying not to take glee in their misfortunes (because if they were innocent this would be a terrible thing) but it feels good that they are being punished already.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:20 PM on August 11 [25 favorites]


And I was about to say this: the real targets of these threats are Americans and of course, by extension, the world.

Abusers want you thinking about them *all the time* and what better way to get and hold people's attention than the threat of total annihilation of all life on Earth?

Oh and Robert E. Kelly just tweeted that there won't be a war. Robert E Kelly knows everything. Or at least, something, which puts him infinity percent ahead of his President.
posted by tel3path at 4:21 PM on August 11 [5 favorites]


Trying not to take glee in their misfortunes (because if they were innocent this would be a terrible thing) but it feels good that they are being punished already.

Nobody on the Death Star is innocent.
posted by Justinian at 4:22 PM on August 11 [18 favorites]


If there is a micro-thin silver lining to Trump's constant distractability, it's that if he's focusing on Venezuela for the next few days, he's going to lose his momentum on NK because it isn't interesting to him.
posted by Autumnheart at 4:23 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


One of my big worries about Trump making these idiotic improvised statements is that they're not being vetted AT ALL through diplomatic or intelligence experts in terms of how they will translate both linguistically and culturally in North Korea. That is really, really reckless.
posted by FelliniBlank at 4:24 PM on August 11 [5 favorites]


I think Trump might be interested in intervening in Venezuela because it allows him to swing his dick around in an oil-rich country, try to get to be popular as a "war president," plus there's no risk of nuclear retaliation.
posted by dhens at 4:26 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


A small 7-10kt weapon of the sort NK can produce...
It's more a case of "how many are available?"


"North Korea’s Nuke Program Is Way More Sophisticated Than You Think." I was surprised that current estimates put their stockpile at 60 weapons. Worse, they seem to have successfully miniaturized them for missile launch; their early testing was failing apparently not because they were incompetent but because they were starting with relatively advanced designs. NK claimed it had thermonuclear capability in Jan. 2016 (disputed).

This is much worse than I'd thought until recently. The probability that they've got a working ICBM with a ~10kt warhead is higher than 1% at this point, which ought to be enough to deter a rational world leader.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 4:27 PM on August 11 [3 favorites]


That's not worse; it's better. The more the DPRK is actually a potential nuclear threat to the United States, the less likely the US will start a fucking war that will kill me and all the people I know and love.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 4:29 PM on August 11 [6 favorites]


@Laura Litvan Trump still going after McConnell, just told reporters he should have taken away committee chairmanships of GOP senators who voted 'no'

Hah, wow I forgot the President makes all the Senate committee assignments.

I think that's a misread of that tweet. That tweet is saying that Trump was saying McConnell should have taken away committee chairmanships.
posted by Green With You at 4:36 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]



I think that's a misread of that tweet. That tweet is saying that Trump was saying McConnell should have taken away committee chairmanships.

I'm pretty sure rhizome was making a joke because of course the President doesn't make the committee assignments, the Senate Leader does.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:39 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


WaPo droppo:

The General Services Administration removed Trump hotel data from its website. You can read it here. (Jonathan O'Connell, WaPo)
The documents show the hotel’s financial performance in February, March and April of this year, as well as year-to-date totals, offering far more information about the hotel’s operations than previous disclosures. Up until Thursday, the GSA had only posted heavily redacted versions of the “monthly statement certificates” providing no financial information.

This time, the certificates for February, March and April were almost completely free of redaction, allowing anyone to see the company’s budgeted and actual financial performance for every segment of the hotel (rooms, food/beverage, spa and parking, for instance) along with an analysis of how it is faring against competitors. [...]

Critics of the lease deal immediately wondered if the White House had intervened to have the documents removed. Dixon said no such thing happened. “The White House was not involved,” she wrote. President Trump and his daughter and senior adviser, Ivanka Trump, have resigned from the family business and pledged to remove themselves from its operations.

The Washington Post decided to publish the documents, which it downloaded before they were removed. They are below.

posted by Room 641-A at 4:43 PM on August 11 [38 favorites]


Trying not to take glee in their misfortunes (because if they were innocent this would be a terrible thing)

everybody who put time, effort, labor, and persuasion into getting this idiot sack of shit elected president can go live in a refrigerator box under a highway overpass for the rest of their lives for all I care, whether or not they intentionally sold their country out to Vladimir fucking Putin.
posted by prize bull octorok at 4:45 PM on August 11 [49 favorites]


Oddly enough (though apologies if it was posted in the previous threads) I'm actually finding some solace through Clickhole, especially Master Diplomat: Pundits Have Noted Similarities Between Trump’s N. Korea Statements And JFK’s Iconic ‘Prepare To Be Radioactive Skeletons, Motherfuckers’ Speech That De-escalated The Cuban Missile Crisis
I can't say why exactly, I think it's mostly just having something more insane than reality at hand.
posted by AirExplosive at 4:46 PM on August 11 [22 favorites]


The more the DPRK is actually a potential nuclear threat to the United States, the less likely the US will start a fucking war that will kill me and all the people I know and love.

Have your calculations taken into account the fact that our president is Donald Trump?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 4:50 PM on August 11 [15 favorites]


"North Korea’s Nuke Program Is Way More Sophisticated Than You Think."

This link is broken, but most of the conclusions you seem to draw from it are obviously wrong. DPRK does not have truly miniaturized nukes, and if it does have a few half-heartedly miniaturized nukes (there is truly a range between the missile-undeliverable Fat Man and the 1-foot-across fission trigger of a modern H-bomb) it only has a few of them because where is the tritium coming from to build them? And oh yeah they're harder to build than actual H-bombs.

The possibility that they have an ICBM capable of delivering a warhead of any type to the continental USA is zero percent, because they can't do re-entry. They have also shown no skill at navigation/targeting. They haven't even the basis for starting on triggering at the right altitude on a suborbital ballistic approach. I also absolutely don't believe that they have a nuclear bomb of any capacity that weighs less than a few thousand pounds, which means yeah they could hit Seoul but then they can pound the crap out of Seoul with conventional artillery. They might be able to hit some random point on mainland Japan in a fit of suicidal rage. Guam? Good luck with that. It would be quite a demonstration if they pulled it off, and I'd have to eat a few words. Not stocking up on crow seasoning sauce at the moment though.
posted by Bringer Tom at 4:53 PM on August 11 [21 favorites]


@barbarastarrcnn: DOD spox says its not invading #Venezuala "Any insinuations by the Maduro regime that we are planning an invasion are baseless."

Well oiled machine.
posted by zachlipton at 4:53 PM on August 11 [22 favorites]


NOT INVADERING #Venezuala ...

But #Venezuela had better watch it's smart mouth.
posted by tilde at 4:56 PM on August 11 [7 favorites]




The effect of one nuclear bomb on the US economy is probably equivalent to one hurricane.

what a callous and fucked up thing to say! If only because one these things is an act of nature and/or God, the other a man made and engineered cataclysm.
posted by philip-random at 5:00 PM on August 11 [3 favorites]


"Uncle pbo is gonna Gen-Xplain..."

How do I get this podcast?
posted by eckeric at 5:01 PM on August 11 [29 favorites]


Have your calculations taken into account the fact that our president is Donald Trump?

Yeah
posted by Joseph Gurl at 5:04 PM on August 11 [1 favorite]


But #Venezuela had better watch it's smart mouth

During this whole episode Trump has been talking like apocalypse dad, not a president. It's been particularly striking, I think. He's going to start WWIII because he's working out his father issues.

One more word out of you and it's up to your room!
posted by Room 641-A at 5:16 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


God save us from Republicans with daddy issues.
posted by Autumnheart at 5:22 PM on August 11 [18 favorites]




Uncle pbo is gonna Gen-Xplain

I wish to subscribe and/or contribute to your newsletter/podcast/webthingy
posted by nubs at 5:22 PM on August 11 [11 favorites]


And of course, Trump is still making noises about reneging on the Iran agreement that they are living up to, as part of his comprehensive Fuck You Obama program. If he does dump it, or if he even keeps bloviating to that effect, why would Kim or anyone else ever consider any sort of non-proliferation deal with the US again after such a massive display of bad faith?
posted by FelliniBlank at 5:23 PM on August 11 [11 favorites]


Any insinuations by the Maduro regime that we are planning an invasion are baseless.

Ok what about insinuations from Trump tho
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 5:23 PM on August 11 [18 favorites]


God save us from Republicans with daddy issues.

Rich guys--should you ever somehow happen across this--help us all out and hug your fucking sons once in a while, would you?
posted by DirtyOldTown at 5:25 PM on August 11 [35 favorites]


That, of course, should have said National Treasure Alexandra Petri. She's not so treasured so as to have transcended a name, yet, nor is she Nicholas Cage.
posted by zachlipton at 5:31 PM on August 11 [6 favorites]


North Korea’s “not quite” ICBM from the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. I'm sure that you'll all be relieved to hear that they probably can't quite hit the United States... yet.
posted by Krulth at 5:31 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


For this evening's entertainment, please enjoy this ongoing thread of National Treasure at a wine and painting class responding to Mike Pence's portrait.

I thought it was getting a bit wide in the seat so I suggested she turn it into a portrait of Trump.

I was listening to Can He Do That (this week's episode is Can a President order a Nuclear Strike?) and learned an interesting tidbit. When Nixon resigned he got on the plane to California as President and was to land as private citizen. He expected to fly with the nuclear football but the bureaucracy arranged for it to go to the VP Ford instead. The historian did not say who made the call but Nixon was obviously not in charge. Somebody made the decision he was not to be trusted with that power on his way out.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 5:32 PM on August 11 [8 favorites]


Secret Life of Gravy: "the parting of ways with WilmerHale was also in part because Manafort’s finances are increasingly strained, according to sources familiar with the situation."

Interesting. This theory hangs together well with a few other plot points: 1) I posted in the previous megathread about how Manafort likely got caught up with his failson-in-law's real estate investment schemes and had to mortgage a bunch of properties, indicating a possible cash crunch, and 2) in Josh Marshall's close read of the announcement that Manafort is switching legal representation, he notes that the announcement says that Manafort is "in the process" of retaining another firm, indicating that he hadn't yet retained Miller & Chevalier before dropping and/or getting dropped by Wilmer Hale, suggesting a less-than-orderly transition.

Here's another weird thing. Remember back when Manafort retroactively registered as a foreign agent back in June and some people were speculating that this might have been a sign that he was co-operating with the feds since one thing they sometimes make people do is go back and repair various defects in their record. Well, given the no-knock, pre-dawn FBI raid on his house, where does that theory go? Was he never a co-operating witness? If so, then why did he retroactively register? Was he co-operating but then the Feds said "nah, this dude's playing us," and then flipped back on him? Whatever the case, I'm pretty confident in speculating that life sucks pretty bad right now for Paul Manafort. Couldn't have happened to a nicer guy.
posted by mhum at 5:33 PM on August 11 [18 favorites]


I'm sure that you'll all be relieved to hear that they probably can't quite hit the United States... yet.

so it falls short and hits in coastal British Columbia somewhere?
posted by philip-random at 5:42 PM on August 11


Things are bad, and David Frum makes them worse
The warhawks who drove the Republicans rightward in the early 2000s likely bear more responsibility for Donald Trump’s ascendancy than all the Russian hackers and “fake news” websites put together, but liberals are more than willing to let them off the hook if they provide limp critiques of their own party as penance. Naturally, many of them are doing just that. The neocons’ strategic retreat from the smoldering wreckage they created was a clever gambit, in many ways reminiscent of a classic insurance scam. Like an insurance scam, it can be wildly successful when carried out with adequate skill and commitment — and no one is more committed than David Frum, the George W. Bush speechwriter who introduced America to the “axis of evil.”
posted by the man of twists and turns at 5:44 PM on August 11 [12 favorites]


GOP-led Senate panel wants White House responses on Kushner's security clearance (Manu Naju, CNN)
(CNN)The Senate Judiciary Committee is calling on the White House to provide new details about President Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner's security clearance application, including whether he could be trusted with sensitive information after he initially failed to disclose meetings with Russian officials.

The committee, led by Republican Chairman Chuck Grassley of Iowa, sent a letter in June to the White House and the FBI asking for a detailed list of questions about Kushner's security clearance form, which he has had to amend multiple times because of his initial failure to disclose meetings with foreign officials. In response, Kushner's outside attorney sent the panel a letter, but the White House has not yet responded to the panel's queries despite a July 6 deadline set by a bipartisan group of senators.

The committee's spokesman, George Hartmann, told CNN Friday that the response from Kushner's attorney does not satisfy the panel's request for information from the White House.
posted by Room 641-A at 5:48 PM on August 11 [31 favorites]


(Facebook was the only link I could find for this, sorry) The Betsy Riot resistance in Lincoln, NB:
Who shall ensure that white nationalist politicians face no unpleasantness as they fuck the country? . . . The Lincoln Journal Star has stepped forward to champion polite behavior. Last week, the editors published . . . an editorial that fingerwags the resistance movement for being too unkind to the people literally trying to kill them. . . . So the Nebraska Betsies drew up their own paper, offering news of the day with actual quotes from this embarrassment of an editorial underlined, as well as examples from history that the paper would have fainted over. They distributed the paper around Lincoln and stood in front of the newspaper offices handing it to employees. We include here a shot of the full page as well as zoomed-in photos of the individual stories.
posted by cybercoitus interruptus at 5:48 PM on August 11 [28 favorites]


Christ I didn't even realize Venezuela was on his radar, why are we talking about military options against Venezuela?

We're ready to bomb/strike/invade North Korea if they threaten us (except we're totally not ready at all). We're also ready to bomb/strike/invade Venezuela if, uh...if they fall so deep into chaos they can't threaten us and aren't even thinking about us?

Maduro called him the weakest US president in 100 years.

Truth hurts.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 5:51 PM on August 11 [9 favorites]


What the ever loving fuck. Texas strikes again!

groop speak BREAKING: Texas House Passes Bill To Make Women Buy ‘Rape Insurance’
Texas, has just passed a bill in the House of Representatives that will essentially force women to buy rape insurance if they seek to have an abortion.

Critics of the bill are calling it especially cruel and a detriment to women’s health in general. If put into law, the bill will take effect as soon as Dec. 1 and force women to buy supplemental plans if they wish to have abortions, even if induced by rape.

Considering the Senate has already passed a very similar measure, and Governor Greg Abbott has already come out publicly showing his support, it’s only a matter of time before the bill gets signed.
They frame it as rape insurance but this would also mean buying suplemental coverage to get an abortion to save your life
Currently, 10 other states ban private insurance plans from covering abortions. Texas is about to be added to that list.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 5:58 PM on August 11 [33 favorites]


Rex has a score to settle with Maduro, and Rubio thinks Venezuelan Americans can help him politically. They've both been agitating about this for awhile.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 6:00 PM on August 11


We're ready to bomb/strike/invade North Korea if they threaten us (except we're totally not ready at all). We're also ready to bomb/strike/invade Venezuela if, uh...if they fall so deep into chaos they can't threaten us and aren't even thinking about us?

And Iran, and Syria, and for like five minutes waaay back there eons ago shortly after Trump got into office, China too. He'll probably burn through the countries we have rocky relationships with and start threatening allies by year's end. Except Russia, of course.
posted by jason_steakums at 6:03 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


I wonder how enlistment is going at US military recruitment offices this week?
posted by spitbull at 6:05 PM on August 11 [1 favorite]


What does surprise me is that not a single Trump-whisperer has emerged. Is there no one who has his ear to even warn off the most disastrous turns of phrase?

Ivanka tries, supposedly. However, in my experience you can't really tame crazy, even if you're the child he wishes he could uh, date, and theoretically you have the most leverage of anyone. It just isn't much. Truly, nobody can "tame" this beast because the beast listens to no one but the snarling in his heart.
posted by jenfullmoon at 6:15 PM on August 11 [5 favorites]


Maduro called him the weakest US president in 100 years.

For those who don't want to do the math, Woodrow Wilson had his stroke 98 years ago.
posted by Etrigan at 6:18 PM on August 11 [17 favorites]


In case anyone is wondering how the CREW crew's emoluments case is progressing, oral arguments start October 18th.
posted by triggerfinger at 6:20 PM on August 11 [9 favorites]


Congressional Investigators Want to Question Trump's Longtime Secretary, Rhona Graff, In Russia Probe
Congressional investigators want to question President Donald Trump’s longtime personal secretary as part of their ongoing probe into a controversial meeting between Trump campaign officials and a Russian lawyer promising dirt on Hillary Clinton, ABC News has learned.[...]

"I can also send this info to your father via Rhona," Goldstone wrote Donald Jr. in the email, "but it is ultra sensitive so wanted to send to you first."[...]

According to sources familiar with Trump's habits, Graff would often receive emails on his behalf and print them out for his review. If Trump felt the need to respond he would write on the print out -- typically with a Sharpie pen -- and hand it back to Graff so should could scan the message and send it on electronically.
Meredith better lawyer up.
posted by Doktor Zed at 6:28 PM on August 11 [45 favorites]


NPR Mueller Turns Up The Heat With Unusual Search Warrant In Russia Probe
the special counsel investigating Russian interference in last year's presidential election is moving with unusual speed and assertiveness, according to half a dozen legal experts following the probe.[...]In any case, the Justice Department frequently deploys tough tactics with a larger goal in mind: securing the cooperation of insiders who can guide authorities through a complex investigation and help deliver bigger targets.

"I call it 'climbing the ladder,' " Jeffress said. "It happens in every corporate investigation," where investigators question clerks and assistants, and then move up to vice presidents and higher-level executives.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:30 PM on August 11 [12 favorites]


Down memory lane - and I really hope that this is not the last thread: MetaFilter in the Ruins (Plus The original 2003 thread). (Hat tip: Rhaomi)
posted by growabrain at 6:49 PM on August 11 [11 favorites]


North Korea’s “not quite” ICBM from the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. I'm sure that you'll all be relieved to hear that they probably can't quite hit the United States... yet. posted by Krulth at 8:31 PM on August 11 [2 favorites +] [!]

Actual title: "... Can't hit the lower 48". Sorry Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, American Samoa, Alaska, Hawaii; you know we love you too.
posted by achrise at 6:56 PM on August 11 [3 favorites]


So Trump's strategy is to hold off on totally provoking North Korea to fire its nukes until they can reach California, one state that he'd love to write off, right? (Because the NRA sick joke about Sacramento/Guam is totally official policy, right?).
posted by oneswellfoop at 7:02 PM on August 11


Is this stuff so hard? Is he really such a fucking wildcard that he can't even be steered?

Yes, if the multiple professional psychiatrists organisations who have broken with many years of adherence to professional ethical guidelines against diagnosing public figures in absentia to say that, yes, Trump shows worryingly blatant and typical symptoms of malignant narcissism are right, then yes, it's exactly that hard and he really legitimately is that much of an unpredictable, self-aggrandizing wild card. That's all baked right into the disorder and it's a morbid one that can't be treated.
posted by saulgoodman at 7:15 PM on August 11 [32 favorites]


NYT, Coral Davenport and Eric Lipton, Scott Pruitt Is Carrying Out His E.P.A. Agenda in Secret, Critics Say
When career employees of the Environmental Protection Agency are summoned to a meeting with the agency’s administrator, Scott Pruitt, at agency headquarters, they no longer can count on easy access to the floor where his office is, according to interviews with employees of the federal agency.

Doors to the floor are now frequently locked, and employees have to have an escort to gain entrance.

Some employees say they are also told to leave behind their cellphones when they meet with Mr. Pruitt, and are sometimes told not to take notes.

Mr. Pruitt, according to the employees, who requested anonymity out of fear of losing their jobs, often makes important phone calls from other offices rather than use the phone in his office, and he is accompanied, even at E.P.A. headquarters, by armed guards, the first head of the agency to ever request round-the-clock security.
NYT, Peter Baker, Combative Trump Pulls His Punches for One Man: Putin
The roster of villains in President Trump’s world is legion. The list of people he has been willing, even eager, to publicly attack includes not just Mitch McConnell, his latest target, but Jeff Sessions, Chuck Schumer, Paul D. Ryan, John McCain, Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama.

And don’t forget James B. Comey, Robert S. Mueller III, Andrew G. McCabe, Rod J. Rosenstein, John D. Podesta, Nancy Pelosi, Lisa Murkowski, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Rosie O’Donnell, Meryl Streep, the mayor of London and the cast of “Saturday Night Live.” The countries he has assailed include not just North Korea and Iran but also Germany, Canada, Mexico, China and Sweden.

But for all of that feistiness, for all of those verbal and online fisticuffs, there is one person who is definitely not on Mr. Trump’s target list: President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia.
A good summary of Omarosa Manigault's NABJ panel from BuzzFeed. Apparently, Manigault was going to appear alone with a moderator, but they changed it at the last minute to be with a panel including Valerie Castile, the mother of Philando Castile, and Sandra Sterling, the aunt of Alton Sterling. The Root had reporters in the room, and their wrap-up of tweets is useful: Omarosa Made an Appearance at NABJ and That Shit Did Not Go Over Well

The Hill, Jessie Hellmann, Abrupt Trump cuts to teen pregnancy program surprise groups
The Trump administration has abruptly cut short grant programs aimed at ending teen pregnancy, leaving the institutions that receive the funds scrambling for answers.

An office within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) notified 81 institutions across the U.S. that the five-year grants they were awarded would end two years sooner than planned.

The Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program (TPPP), a national program created in 2010 under former President Barack Obama, funds organizations working to reduce and prevent teen pregnancy, with a focus on reaching populations with the greatest need.

But HHS informed the recipients in their annual grant award letters that programs would end next year rather than in 2020, a cut of about $200 million over two years.
Mother Jones: New York Becomes First City to Guarantee Lawyers to Tenants Facing Eviction

Max Boot, Foreign Policy: Fox News Has Completed Its Transformation Into Trump TV
While other networks are covering Trump’s myriad setbacks and scandals, Fox presents an alternative reality in which the bumbling president is close to infallible (except when he splits with fellow populist Jeff Sessions), his critics are “snowflakes,” and the biggest threat facing America is, depending on the day of the week, either the Hillary Clinton email scandal, “the war on Christmas,” or “political correctness.” It’s all too reminiscent of the Soviet-era TV stations that ran stories about record grain harvests even as grocery shelves were bare.

Bill O’Reilly’s 8 p.m. time slot has been taken by Tucker Carlson, a smirking preppy with a perpetual look of befuddlement on his face as if he had just misplaced his bowtie. He is even more unpleasant than his blowhard predecessor, as I discovered when I appeared on his show July 12. It was, as I later wrote, like having “a barrel of raw sewage dumped on my head.”
And finally, here's Petri's finished product for the Pence portrait. I looked into the tentacle situation.
posted by zachlipton at 7:17 PM on August 11 [40 favorites]


Um, does the NRA know how close Sacramento is to California's Trump country?
posted by Fish, fish, are you doing your duty? at 7:19 PM on August 11


Oops, one more, from Politico: Kelly considers further shuffling of West Wing staff, officials say:
White House chief of staff John Kelly spent this week in Bedminster, N.J., pondering changes in the West Wing, according to four White House officials.

Kelly summoned aides to President Donald Trump’s golf club there to ask about their portfolios and make suggestions on how to make the West Wing communicate better and get more done, while giving people clear responsibilities and then holding them accountable. The role of chief strategist Steve Bannon has come under particular scrutiny in several conversations, particularly because he has a large staff, including an outside public relations expert, but no specific duties.

In a number of daily meetings, Kelly generated a list of concerns, including aides without clear portfolios, decisions that aren’t made with proper vetting and internal fights — particularly a sustained campaign against national security adviser H.R. McMaster. He has met with top aides, including the president’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, about making changes, the four officials say. In some of the encounters, he has suggested that people should be more concerned with the president’s agenda and less concerned with their own.
...
The increased chatter has raised eyebrows inside the White House about Bannon's future. The chief strategist has stayed in Washington while many of the senior aides have been in New Jersey. Aides in Bedminster and in Washington say they fear Bannon is spreading damaging information about his colleagues.
...
“General Kelly has done a fantastic job,” Trump said. “‘Chief,’ I call him, ‘Chief.’ He’s a respected man, he’s a four-star general from the Marines, and he carries himself like a four-star from the Marines.”
Also in there: "Trade restrictions on China that Bannon heavily worked on are expected to be announced Monday, a sign of his continued influence." Because Friday wasn't busy enough threatening two shooting wars, we need a trade war on Monday too?
posted by zachlipton at 7:24 PM on August 11 [10 favorites]


From zachlipton's NYT Putin article:
Some foreign policy scholars said that even if there was nothing untoward betwee the Trump campaign and Russia, the presdient and his team may be soft-pedaling criticism of Mr. Putin in hopes of striking a grand bargain on Syria and the Islamic State.
This reeks of nth-dimensional chess wishful thinking. Putin is his dad, a volatile benefactor who must be talked up to friends and protected from inquiry lest his gifts be supplanted by punishment. Deliver us from daddy issues indeed.
posted by Fish, fish, are you doing your duty? at 7:34 PM on August 11 [6 favorites]


Oh, and on Joe Heim's twitter, you can follow ~150 white supremacists marching with (tiki) torches at UVA chanting "blood and soil," with more expected in Charlottesville tomorrow.

This is straight up nazi shit.
posted by zachlipton at 7:36 PM on August 11 [31 favorites]


Trump speaks with Guam’s governor in extremely candid phone call (WLWT-5)
Calvo said, “With all the criticism that’s going on over there from a guy that’s being targeted, we need a president like you.”

Trump praised the military, bashed an “obstructionist Congress” and told Calvo how tourism would be boosted for Guam without spending money.

“You’ve become extremely famous,” Trump said. “All over the world they’re talking about Guam.”
posted by Room 641-A at 7:37 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


2017: "This is straight up nazi shit."
posted by tivalasvegas at 7:38 PM on August 11 [26 favorites]


The myth and the proof of the individual.

7.some billion individuals on this world who can't do a damn thing for change.

One single individual controlling it.
posted by Evilspork at 7:41 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


“You’ve become extremely famous,” Trump said. “All over the world they’re talking about Guam.”

oh my fucking god that's all that matters to him.
posted by Lyn Never at 7:41 PM on August 11 [70 favorites]


Calvo has to be all "WTF is this shit," and when Guam can dunk on the US, you know it's bad.
posted by rhizome at 7:42 PM on August 11 [1 favorite]


Hang on, did Trump just say that Guam is going to be a tourist destination because it's theoretically being targeted by NK war heads!?

Sometimes I can't seem to grok the level of madness that 2017 has become because it's just too vast and then something like this slaps me in the face.
posted by gofargogo at 7:42 PM on August 11 [37 favorites]


I choose all my holiday destinations in hope of nuclear annihilation!
posted by chiquitita at 7:43 PM on August 11 [7 favorites]


Max Boot, Foreign Policy: Fox News Has Completed Its Transformation Into Trump TV
This is the most surprising/disappointing media development, considering what I've heard about the feelings of Rupert Murdoch AND his two sons (apparently much better than Trump's sons) and the loss of key Trumpsters Roger (R.I.P.) Ailes and Bill (ORLY?) O'Reilly. Carlson isn't a hard-core Trumpeter, but he appears to be "just following orders" like the airheads feeding talking points on Fox and Friends. And I haven't heard much more from Token Journalist Shep Smith in the last week since he made serious headlines...

“You’ve become extremely famous,” Trump said. “All over the world they’re talking about Guam.”
oh my fucking god that's all that matters to him.

I've heard that the big message of the last chapter of his "Art of the Deal" book is "bad publicity is better than no publicity", and it HAS been the way he's led his life... quite successfully.
posted by oneswellfoop at 7:45 PM on August 11 [1 favorite]


I kind of want to see them try to actually burn something down with those tiki torches. They're equally likely to set themselves on fire as a building.
posted by T.D. Strange at 7:51 PM on August 11 [1 favorite]


Y'all need to watch Emily's live streams (latest of several here)of the Nazi rally that just happened on UVA grounds. This shit is terrifying and here, right now. I'm not even sure my friends there are alive right now.

40 people stood against hundreds of torch-wielding Actual Fucking Nazis tonight. They were maced and beaten while cops looked on and did nothing. Then, once the Nazis were finished, the cops moved in on those who had stood against them, declaring an unlawful assembly and physically removing injured.

Show the fuck up tomorrow. This is happening.
posted by odinsdream at 7:51 PM on August 11 [90 favorites]


Here's the video (facebook link) of Trump's call with the Governor of Guam and here's the transcript of him talking about tourism:
I have to say Eddie, you're going to become extremely famous. All over the world they're talking about Guam and they're talking about you. And your tourism, I can say this, your tourism is going to go up like tenfold with the expenditure of no money so I congratulate you. It looks beautiful, you know I'm watching...it's such a big story in the news it just looks like a beautiful place.
All he does is watch stuff on TV, even Guam. It looks like Trump reads the New York Post (Guam sees apocalyptic threat as new tourism opportunity) and not USA Today (North Korean threats already affecting Guam tourism).

Did Gov. Calvo check with anyone before recording his call with the President and posting it on Facebook?
posted by zachlipton at 7:53 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


Also realize UVA students are not on campus yet. That's why there's no resistance in these photos. They're marching around an empty campus, not taking this clown show to west Baltimore.
posted by T.D. Strange at 7:53 PM on August 11 [20 favorites]


In case it wasn't obvious that "conservative" is code for "raving sociopath," a few of the quotes in this NYT story ("‘We’ve Had Enough’: Conservatives Relish the ‘Fury’ in Trump’s Talk") should make it nauseatingly clear. For example, witness what these ostensible specimens of the human race emit from their face-holes:
“It doesn’t concern me,” said Zach Lozier, who was tucking into a barbecue dinner with his family Thursday at the Morgan County Fair in Brush, Colo. “We live in the safest part of the whole country.”

[...]

“He needs to step all over that little twerp,” said John Stout, 71, who sat with three retired friends over coffee at the Sinclair gas station in Wiggins, Colo., on Thursday. The other men nodded in agreement. “If it had been me up there,” Mr. Stout continued, “I’d have done it a lot quicker.”

Mr. Stout said he did not fear for his safety, and hoped that Mr. Trump would take action to “take out” the North Korean leader’s nuclear abilities.

“Hell yes,” he said. “And they can pinpoint it to where they are not killing a lot of innocent people. That will be the big goal there.”
I guess tell me again about how we should keep an open mind and try to reach out to the misunderstood Trump voters, no matter what sort of gutless murderous bluster they spew. Christ, this country.
posted by informavore at 7:54 PM on August 11 [48 favorites]


That reminds me. I didn't see this:

Airbnb Cancels Accounts Linked to White Nationalist Rally in Charlottesville (Jonah Engle Bromwich, NYT)
Airbnb has canceled a number of accounts and bookings associated with the Unite the Right Free Speech Rally, which “seeks to affirm the right of Southerners and white people to organize for their interests,” according to an event description on Facebook.

Airbnb confirmed that it had canceled the accounts of some users who were involved with the event, citing the company’s request that its users sign a commitment to “accept people regardless of their race, religion, national origin, ethnicity, disability, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, or age.”

A thread on The Daily Stormer, a neo-Nazi news website, that showed that some of the site’s users had planned their stays on Airbnb — and were preparing to hold parties at their rentals after the event — was flagged to the company, prompting an investigation.
Would Manchin take the Cabinetnjob? He knows what's at stake.
posted by Room 641-A at 8:00 PM on August 11 [16 favorites]


Stephen Miller or "Eric Putin?" Dude sure looks like a Russian agent straight out of Central Casting.
posted by wierdo at 8:09 PM on August 11


“If it had been me up there,” Mr. Stout continued, “I’d have done it a lot quicker.”

"And I would have totally banged Betty Stuckerson too if it'd been me taking her to the prom instead of Harry," Stout proclaimed. "And then it would have been me running the new Jiffy Lube and not him!"

A single tear fell into his rapidly cooling coffee.
posted by downtohisturtles at 8:10 PM on August 11 [29 favorites]


This is only tangentially related to #potus45, but it might be helpful to women and minorities speaking out publicly against Trump in online spaces:

Teen Vogue | We Need to Talk about Online Harassment | Lauren Duca

At the end of the article she has some resources for those wishing to take action or support visible (and vulnerable) women activists.
posted by xyzzy at 8:12 PM on August 11 [21 favorites]


“If it had been me up there,” Mr. Stout continued, “I’d have done it a lot quicker.”

They hate us for our freedom, dontcha know.
posted by Rykey at 8:13 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


odinsdream: that is fucked. just horrible.
posted by Golem XIV at 8:20 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


“He needs to step all over that little twerp,” said John Stout, 71, who sat with three retired friends over coffee at the Sinclair gas station in Wiggins, Colo., on Thursday. The other men nodded in agreement. “If it had been me up there,” Mr. Stout continued, “I’d have done it a lot quicker.”

Nice to see that the talking points are all in order and being disseminated just as designed. I talked to my mother this afternoon and she echoed the same language of "the little twerp" ("lil' dweeb" was her specific term) and assured me that DJT was not going to do anything, because he's all talk and is surrounded by good people ("I disagree, but I hope you're right," I said), and she's glad he at least has a backbone (...) unlike his predecessor (...................)

I do hope they're right. I hope that the smug perception of safety they have is correct, and that their guy really is all bluster and no action--while simultaneously representing strength and resolve, which, okayfine--and that we will be safe. I really hope they're right.
posted by witchen at 8:21 PM on August 11 [3 favorites]


It is genuinely comforting, however, that Kim Jong-un is being characterized in right-wing media as a small nerd. That means the narrative of PRNK being a big imminent threat isn't holding up.

Also comforting, hilariously!!!!!, is the Venezuela talk. Trump can tell the North Korea stuff isn't looking great for him and he's flailing, racking his brains for a similar, easier mission. Venezuela is about as hard a pivot as we're going to get from him on this, I suspect/hope.
posted by witchen at 8:25 PM on August 11


It's why they voted for him and still love his shtick: he's the patron saint of all proudly pig-ignorant, mindlessly aggro, big-talking bozos and their enablers everywhere -- city, suburb, and smalltown, at every class stratum, in every walk of life.
posted by FelliniBlank at 8:25 PM on August 11 [42 favorites]




I witnessed something last year that I keep coming back to when talking about Trump voters. The Target near me is an urban one so the store is up top and underneath is the parking garage. I was there with my son when three motorcycles rolled in. LOUD ones, the ones that have been specifically souped up to be as ear-splitting as possible. They came into this enclosed, concrete space with a lot of kids on a Sunday and proceeded to very much on purpose rev their engines needlessly for a solid minute in between parking (IN THE HANDICAPPED SPOTS WITH NO DISPLAYED TAGS) and turning their bikes off. Children were screaming and crying and holding their ears. My own son was inconsolable. I was fucking FURIOUS. Even though we were actually about to leave, I marched right back into the store and told the security guard what had happened (spoiler: he didn't give a shit or pretend to give a shit) and I also left them a note on one of their bikes saying "Congratulations, you are assholes." Even though I knew they'd love to be called an asshole.

Anyway, those people took delight in making kids cry and taking parking away from disabled people. And then went fucking shopping at Target because I guess assholes need tube socks. They are out there in great numbers, those people who enjoy hurting other people. Maybe they don't enjoy it enough to do something overt that might bring some actual punishment, but they're absolutely out there to do banal evil shit or enable someone else to do actual evil shit if it will hurt anyone but themselves. It's the only way these people know how to leave a mark on the world: cause distress, piss people off, hurt, offend. They're too cowardly to get in real trouble, but they're happy to deputize Donald Trump to fuck up the world for them. And they rely on the rest of us being powerless, or being too polite or afraid to say anything or to endlessly give them the benefit of the doubt. I'm kind of all done with that.
posted by soren_lorensen at 8:27 PM on August 11 [104 favorites]


I think I saw a link in one of these threads to an article with a timeline of various administration scandals (particularly Russia-related) lined up against Trump doing or tweeting something insane. Am I imagining this? Because I feel like it is relevant to this situation.

It would be craven enough if he was just tweeting or talking--but he has the temperament to actually do terrible things in an effort to distract everyone.
posted by schroedinger at 8:38 PM on August 11 [3 favorites]


prefpara: Sorry, have we discussed the reports that China has said that "It Will Stay Neutral If US Acts in Self-Defense Following DPRK First Strike, Will Go to War With US If US Strikes First"

I don't know whether I feel relieved or terrified


Artw: China wins most sane, least warlike. Unfortunately....

Experts agree: China is the adult in the room, and is trying to wind down the two idiot children who keep taunting each other:
So I think by saying that, the Global Times, the Chinese newspaper, is trying to do two things. One is to show the international community that we, China, is taking actions. And on the other hand, China also wants to send a warning to North Korea that if you continue your provocation, there might be a day that we are not going to come to your rescue.
Yun Sun, senior associate with the East Asia Program at the Stimson Center in Washington, D.C., on NPR today.

In other words, you can feel relieved.

And another mark for "don't sweat (yet)": Despite Trump's Escalating Rhetoric, Little Evidence Of War Preparations (NPR, Aug. 11, 2017) -- in short, the U.S. aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan just ended a three-month deployment in the region and returned to its port in Japan, and no one has sent evacuation notices to U.S. citizens in South Korea, assuming the people in positions to do this are 1) informed from their directors to send such notices, and 2) that those positions are even filled at this time.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:48 PM on August 11 [10 favorites]


More thoughts from NPR stories today: after hearing that Trump has talked a lot about law enforcement getting more resources to address the opioid emergency in the U.S., it made me think: maybe police will have to consider focusing on opioid related crimes or detaining immigrants, and opt to focus on the issue that is actually killing people.

Fuckin' 2017, when I hope the police are too busy dealing with a public health crisis to focus on their racist tendencies.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:53 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


Yes, there was a woman reporter tonight on Washington Week in Review who pointed out that none of the military in the region are on high alert, dependents are not being evacuated, not even the ones stationed in Guam.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 9:02 PM on August 11 [6 favorites]


Yes, there was a woman reporter tonight on Washington Week in Review who pointed out that none of the military in the region are on high alert, dependents are not being evacuated, not even the ones stationed in Guam.

Can confirm, wife's sister is a military spouse, with 4 month old, stationed on Guam.
posted by RolandOfEld at 9:04 PM on August 11 [9 favorites]


And another mark for "don't sweat (yet)": Despite Trump's Escalating Rhetoric, Little Evidence Of War Preparations

What I'm worried about almost as much as the nukes is that he'll be all WAR IS DECLARED without any preparation, minimal deployments in the area and forces busy elsewhere, no wartime logistics planned out, no approval from Congress or backing from the Pentagon... and everyone will trip over themselves trying to make it happen just to make the stupid baby happy.

Although, I give even odds in that situation that everyone will try to pretend it never happened.
posted by jason_steakums at 9:06 PM on August 11 [6 favorites]


Isn't the whole problem that this isn't a thing he's preparing for? It's not a strategy, he's either going to give the order to fire out of the blue, or he's going to keep saying insane shit until he scares Kim Jong Un enough to fire first. There may not be any preparation for shit hitting the fan before it does in fact hit the fan.
posted by T.D. Strange at 9:09 PM on August 11 [10 favorites]


Looks like Roger has chosen a side in the Bannon-McMaster battle.

@RogerJStoneJr:
A friend I had dinner with in dc ran into @StevenKBannon on the street - mistook him for a homeless bum #CheifStrategistNot
posted by chris24 at 9:10 PM on August 11 [13 favorites]


“You’ve become extremely famous,” Trump said. “All over the world they’re talking about Guam.”

And now we know how he'll handle calls to mayors and governors of places hit by natural disasters. Or the victims of the next mass shooting.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 9:18 PM on August 11 [9 favorites]


He...made a "not" joke in...a hashtag...that he misspelled?

"God's Not Dead" was the first idiotic email forward to become a movie. Is he the first racist uncle Facebook post to become a real boy?
posted by middleclasstool at 9:18 PM on August 11 [6 favorites]


2017: pick a side, Roger Stone or Steve Bannon

PBO: fuck you die in a fire

2017: we might, ha ha! we all might.
posted by prize bull octorok at 9:20 PM on August 11 [35 favorites]


My suspicion is that the state of emergency declaration is the simple first step to major repression.
posted by anadem at 9:25 PM on August 11 [5 favorites]


and everyone will trip over themselves trying to make it happen just to make the stupid baby happy.

Please, enough with the insults to babies. Babies bring joy to the world.
posted by CommonSense at 9:26 PM on August 11 [11 favorites]


Tom Perriello: For those dismissing this alt-right racist hate as fringe, remember neo-confederate CoreyStewart just got half Repub primary vote for VA Gov
posted by T.D. Strange at 9:26 PM on August 11 [15 favorites]


Did anyone punch Richard Spencer at this one? It seems like it's about time.
posted by Justinian at 9:27 PM on August 11 [12 favorites]


There weren't enough counter protesters around in the middle of summer break. The few people on campus looked severely outnumbered. Tomorrow was the day advertised for counter protests, but all the KKK people are out of town, they showed up early tonight.
posted by T.D. Strange at 9:30 PM on August 11


[edit window abuse, sorry]
posted by T.D. Strange at 9:37 PM on August 11


I'm heartsick at this. Thousands of miles away from Charlottesville, I don't know what to do. I can't imagine being a PoC and living there. I don't even recognize my country anymore. (And I know that's incredibly privileged. To many, this is par for the American course. I've just been blind.)
posted by greermahoney at 9:38 PM on August 11 [5 favorites]


Same. It's my hometown. I'm used to genteel, polite Southern racism, not this literal torch-bearing, violent Klan stuff. And the "polite" shit was bad enough. Heartsick, indeed. Appalled. Disturbed.
posted by gingerbeer at 9:52 PM on August 11 [1 favorite]


I seriously hope that there's an influencer of Kim Jong Un who can convince him that "Donnie's really stupid and crazy, just jolly him on and not actually cross the letter of the lines that he's spouting off. You'll look like a strong leader, especially if you act like one!"

(imagine Un vs Donnie trying to look the most "statesmanly.")

If NK was serious about playing, they'd do everything to violate the spiritual definition of Donnie's impotent little temper tantrum "ultimatums" but stay within (an ever more maleable) legal bits of international law. Keep Donnie's support staff floundering, goad him into making more unforced errors.

Oops. Guess NK has been doing a decent rookie job. Jebus, Donnie is giving NK a free diplomacy lesson with not a lot of consequences for mistakes.
posted by porpoise at 10:03 PM on August 11 [1 favorite]




(I hope the mods will forgive me this off-topic comment, but I wanted to reply to soren_lorensen's story of witnessing handicapped parking abuse and not being able to get the authorities to do anything about it. If such a situation happens again, you can use the Parking Mobility app to report it without confronting the offender. Even if they don't get a ticket, you'll be collecting important data on just how bad the problem is for disabled people.)
posted by Soliloquy at 10:10 PM on August 11 [55 favorites]


Why are the Nazis having a luau
posted by miyabo at 10:16 PM on August 11 [22 favorites]


imagine Un

(His family name is Kim and his given name is Jong Un. Calling him "Un" is like calling me "Seph").
posted by Joseph Gurl at 10:17 PM on August 11 [11 favorites]


Bill Maher's new rules tonight about the republican party turning into a party of troll was very powerful - Starts at 49:30 #leninparty
posted by growabrain at 10:17 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


The nazis like their marches to be mosquito-free, apparently.
posted by zachlipton at 10:18 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


The Prime Minister of Australia reaffirmed that we would honour the ANZUS treaty if the United States is attacked. Of course we will! His phrasing couldn't have been worse though. First he said we'd stand "shoulder to shoulder" with the Americans, which is fine. Then he said we are "joined at the hip".

Joined at the hip ... to Donald Trump. There's an image that will never leave you. I'm still shaking, I may never sleep again.
posted by adept256 at 10:19 PM on August 11 [3 favorites]


Japanese tourism is big on Guam. Guam is sometimes referred to as Japan's Hawaii. In addition to big wedding parties there's golf and it's where Japanese can have their "American Experience". The indoor gun ranges offer the opportunity to fire handguns and even fully automatic rifles. They do a brisk business. Maybe the tRump could be convinced to visit the American military members stationed on Guam - a nice long stay to visit all of the golf courses. That would put him closer to North Korea, maybe to have him feel the potential reality of the harsh threats he's made.

The CNMI is nearby with even more fine golf courses. The island of Tinian is not far. tRump could see where the USS Indianapolis delivered it's secret cargo and where that cargo was loaded onto the B-29s that delivered it to Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
posted by X4ster at 10:24 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


Bringer Tom: " if you manage to hit a city with one (a nontrivial task from half way around the world) then even a small nuke will kill more people than any US-landing hurricane ever has."

Hurricanes in the US average less than 50 deaths per year. If you can actually hit what you target, say over the pits at the Indianapolis 500 (300,000 attendees), you are going to exceed the total number of Americans ever killed by a hurricane by several orders of magnitude.

Room 641-A: "Trump praised the military, bashed an “obstructionist Congress” and told Calvo how tourism would be boosted for Guam without spending money.

“You’ve become extremely famous,” Trump said. “All over the world they’re talking about Guam.”
"

Come to Guam; you probably won't be incinerated in a nuclear conflagration and if you are we might totally have your back.
posted by Mitheral at 10:37 PM on August 11 [5 favorites]


where Japanese can have their "American Experience".

Holy hell those prices are ungodly high compared to shooting sports in the US. That's like going to a driving range and paying 3 bucks a swing or double digit dollars for gasoline to drive a Camry or something.
posted by RolandOfEld at 10:38 PM on August 11


> Calling him "Un" is like calling me "Seph"

Yeah, seph, I'm also calling President of the United Stated Donald John Trump "Donnie."
posted by porpoise at 10:39 PM on August 11 [8 favorites]


The Charlottesville Daily Progress going with the headline "FIRE AND FURY" for the white supremacists is a bold step.
posted by zachlipton at 10:44 PM on August 11 [20 favorites]


Too fast! It's all going too fast! Oh god! I'm gonna barf! Someone stop this thing! Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeease!
posted by From Bklyn at 10:58 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


The Nazis are in the open and proud.
posted by Yowser at 10:58 PM on August 11 [2 favorites]


#CheifStrategistNot
When you misspell your sick burns.
posted by xyzzy at 11:04 PM on August 11 [4 favorites]


Two impeach editorials.

Daily Beast: Joy-Ann Reid: Remove Trump From Office Before He Removes Us from Earth
At what point do the American people have a right to ask if this man, who a minority of our fellow citizens handed power, is emotionally fit to wield it? At what point is it fair to inquire as to the health of the president’s mind? At what point is it just to ask about his fundamental fitness to be president, and to demand that his fellow leaders, charged with the proper functioning of the federal government on behalf of all Americans, and not just their hardened, shrunken base, make an inquiry as well?
New Republic: Brian Beutler: Republicans, Remove This Madman From Power
The right’s embrace of Flight 93 thinking has accelerated this generational logic, but only as it applies to the policy end of removing Trump from office. It was overwhelmingly old people who handed Trump the power to end all life on the planet, against the overwhelming wishes of people who will inherit it from them. Young people don’t simply regard Trump as a less-than-ideal steward of their futures, but as a poison forced upon them by elders who have disclaimed any responsibility for bequeathing their offspring a bright and kind and healthy civic life. In exchange for this darkened future, Trump’s enablers were promised everything from lower taxes (financed by cutting health care for younger people) to culture war to a nonspecific assault on the political establishment.
posted by xyzzy at 11:20 PM on August 11 [50 favorites]


From the Joy Reid link: "He screams into the ether to try and push back the void, when the void is deep inside him." This is the best explanation I've ever seen for the Trump clan. May we neutralize the father and make the children so politically gross that it can't spread.
posted by SakuraK at 11:53 PM on August 11 [18 favorites]


“General Kelly has done a fantastic job,” Trump said. “‘Chief,’ I call him, ‘Chief.’ He’s a respected man, he’s a four-star general from the Marines, and he carries himself like a four-star from the Marines.”

If my experience with Marine officers is any indication, you can probably hear Kelly grinding his teeth on the other side of the White House everytime Trump calls him "Chief."

Nevertheless: Wednesday I re-watched THREADS. Yesterday I listened to the 15-part radio adaptation of A Canticle for Liebowitz. And this morning I inexplicably found myself modeling surface and air bursts of various kilotonnage, plotting the maximum size weapon that could be dropped on Luke Air Force Base while not shattering the windows in my house, and cross-referencing that against the possible weapons in the Russian, Chinese and North Korean arsenals. Given favorable wind patterns, only one detonation, and a device less than 300kt, I might be able to survive the initial event, though about 120,000 Phoenicians would not be so lucky.

It has not been a cheery few days, is what I'm saying.

But then I went to my D&D game this evening, which just happened to be the final episode of The Curse of Strahd, in which a superb gaming experience over several months culminated tonight in the ancient vampire's unexpected redemption. And somehow, as we were laying the former villain to rest, and hallowing his crypt, things started looking up.

I may actually sleep well tonight.
posted by darkstar at 12:16 AM on August 12 [20 favorites]


If Trump felt the need to respond he would write on the print out -- typically with a Sharpie pen -- and hand it back to Graff so should could scan the message and send it on electronically.

Nobody seems to have commented on this. This is one step above a fucking crayon.
posted by rifflesby at 1:08 AM on August 12 [23 favorites]


In that Nazi video, when the student recognizes Officer Krumpke or whoever he was, that moment where the student says something to the effect of 'you hit my ex's car' and says it in this sort of funny wow what a small world voice and then the student connects his past observations of the cop with the cops' current behavior and it's not funny or cute at all.
posted by angrycat at 1:16 AM on August 12 [5 favorites]


Re: Manaforte and Flynn's personal financial issues.

When you can't pay for your children's school and mortgage and legal representation is when you flip and become assets to the prosecutors.
posted by mikelieman at 1:42 AM on August 12 [9 favorites]


Yeah, seph, I'm also calling President of the United Stated Donald John Trump "Donnie."

can we not though? asian names are constantly mangled by ignoramuses and bigots and i would just like, for once, to not have to guess which one it is or if it's someone being a smartass.
posted by anem0ne at 2:30 AM on August 12 [35 favorites]


Maybe we can turn this around to something fun. In English, we can call Donald "Donnie". In some contexts, that would be a friendly nickname. In reference to the President, it's almost always meant in an insulting way.

I'm curious if Korean has similar rules for creating diminutive names: friendly when referring to a friend or a child, but disrespectful in most other contexts. If this is possible, what would Kim Jong Un's diminutive be?
posted by honestcoyote at 2:50 AM on August 12


Korean diminutives change based on social status/case, and also add syllables, and wouldn't work well.

You'd have either Jong-un-ah, or Jong-un-i, depending on whether you're referring to him as an object, or if he's the subject acting on something, and in both cases while it's definitely disrespectful, both also are primarily used as terms of endearment.

He is not dear to anyone.
posted by anem0ne at 2:56 AM on August 12 [9 favorites]


Yeah, if Korean is anything like Japanese (and, to my understanding, the two are VERY similar grammatically) the only diminutives are friendly and endearing, and you demonstrate lack of respect for calling someone simply by their name, with no honorifics attached.

Also, it’s worth noting that as bad a look as sarcasm already is, English sarcasm translates especially poorly into other languages.
posted by DoctorFedora at 3:00 AM on August 12 [4 favorites]


Sorry, I don't mean to derail, but does this mean it's ok to just keep referring to him as Kim Jong-Un? Is that essentially the same as always calling 45 "Donald Trump?"
posted by xyzzy at 3:25 AM on August 12 [1 favorite]




The Nazis are in the open and proud.

In case anyone hasn't watched this video of events in Charlottesville posted by Emily Gorcenski, it's important to see.
posted by XMLicious at 4:22 AM on August 12 [11 favorites]


so people are working on identifying all the nazi marchers and posting the information on a website with high PageRank for all eternity, right? RIGHT?
posted by entropicamericana at 4:38 AM on August 12 [24 favorites]


For anyone else who stream captured Emily Gorcenski's video, I found that I needed to offset the audio by +2350ms to get it to line up.
posted by XMLicious at 4:47 AM on August 12 [2 favorites]


This Kim Jong-Un name thing is an irritating digression. But maybe I'm irritable because I just spent a whole conversation coaching my mother on American English pronunciation and was reminded of the lack of cultural reciprocity. She tries really hard to pronounce a vowel that doesn't exist in her native language, even when she can't use her name here because Americans can't be bothered to read or spell it.

So I'm with the other commenters who will see a deviation from the "official" reported name as an example of the following: typo/carelessness, ignorance, cultural insensitivity, or poor attempt to be clever that in fact exposes a lack of bona fide critique of the person or issues (e.g., how conspiracy theorists think they're being clever with puns by misspelling Hillary's name but they're just exposing their nuttiness).

We're better than that. What the heck is so hard about saying Kim Jong-Un? There's plenty to criticize about North Korea (or any other country, really) without getting caught up with its leader's name.
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 4:48 AM on August 12 [45 favorites]


I'm still confused as to how/when reliably racist americans became 'nazis', 'alt-right', 'nationalists', etc. The Southern Strategy has been a necessary and recognized GOP mechanism since 64, it's how they stay viable in any national election. By locking up around 100 dog-whistled electoral college votes out of the gate.
posted by rc3spencer at 4:51 AM on August 12 [5 favorites]


I'm still confused as to how/when reliably racist americans became 'nazis', 'alt-right', 'nationalists', etc.

When they stopped dogwhistling and started lighting torches.

Bug torches, but still.
posted by chris24 at 4:58 AM on August 12 [14 favorites]


When they stopped dogwhistling and started lighting torches.
Perlstein's histories of the modern conservative era are littered with HUNDREDS of events like these, torches included. And blood, and murder, and convention delegates. Really nothing new here except the new labels.
posted by rc3spencer at 5:02 AM on August 12 [1 favorite]


Really nothing new here except the new labels.

(and a not-really-elected dictator who ran on banning muslims and calling mexicans rapists and whose government officially no longer investigates right-wing extremism)
posted by Rust Moranis at 5:08 AM on August 12 [15 favorites]


-- typically with a Sharpie pen -- .

Nobody seems to have commented on this. This is one step above a fucking crayon.


ಠ_ಠ

ಠ_ಠ

(╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻

sharpies4lyf
posted by Room 641-A at 5:10 AM on August 12 [25 favorites]


When they stopped dogwhistling and started lighting torches.
Perlstein's histories of the modern conservative era are littered with HUNDREDS of events like these, torches included. And blood, and murder, and convention delegates. Really nothing new here except the new labels.


My "they" wasn't referring to the racists marching, it was referring the Republican Party. Who have moved from Atwaterian code and plausible deniability to overt appeals to nationalism/racism and embracing/inclusion of neo-nazis and fascism. Subtext has been made text. The mask has come off.

White nationalism is nothing new, a major party being overtly so is.
posted by chris24 at 5:12 AM on August 12 [19 favorites]


Obviously, this isn't something Trump has given any thought, but there is a huge difference between the US being attacked by NK and the US attacking NK in that the NATO article 5 doesn't apply when the US is the attacker. For the Iraq war, Bush managed to establish the so-called Coalition of the willing, through arm-twisting and bribery and because some leaders were idiots and sycophants. It didn't help much because there was no strategic sense in that coalition. I can't see any nation supporting any aggressive war Trump might suggest. A couple of Trump-years ago (weeks in standard time), I thought maybe some Gulf-states and Israel would support a war against Iran, but at this point I think even they have realized that teaming up with Trump would spell disaster.
And even the strongest military in the world cannot wage war without relevant allies. They need supplies and intelligence from allies and even the dumbest general has learnt this from early on — this is the real lesson from those failed attempts on Russia by Napoleon and Hitler, now supplemented with lessons from endless wars in Iraq and Afghanistan where the relevant allies are unreliable (How did anyone think they could trust Pakistan to be a US ally in Afghanistan, that is so crazy it would be a joke if it didn't get people killed). It doesn't really help if Poland is an ally in Iraq, since Poland knows absolutely nothing about Iraq and is not able to supply US forces with necessary resources, and the Saudis are another unreliable ally.
So, Trump tells "his generals" to bomb North Korea, Iran, Venezuela, whatever. Generals spend a lot of time trying to figure out how to not do it without engaging in an actual coup. This is why he tweets. In cabinet and NSC meetings, he is met by some level of reason.
posted by mumimor at 5:17 AM on August 12 [8 favorites]


In case anyone hasn't watched this video of events in Charlottesville posted by Emily Gorcenski, it's important to see.

You just know one of them works at Cost Plus World Market for a staff discount on those Tiki torches.

Also, I know it's an old joke, but why are the people who call for maintaining "genetic purity" always look like the people who have had bleach poured into their own gene pool.
posted by Talez at 5:19 AM on August 12 [16 favorites]


@HeerJeet
If these guys are worried that they'll be replaced by another race, they shouldn't have a movement that is 99% male.
posted by chris24 at 5:22 AM on August 12 [101 favorites]


In case anyone is wondering, various twitter types have been screenshotting people's faces from the video to preserve their images for posterity. The video is dark and disturbing, but Emily did provide a few moments of levity when she specifically tried to capture video of Nazis failing to navigate what appears to be a moderate hill. I've gone up those stairs and it's a lot steeper than it looks.
posted by xyzzy at 5:25 AM on August 12 [5 favorites]


The ADL's Hate Symbols Database may be a useful reference for the images and video of Charlottesville.
posted by XMLicious at 5:25 AM on August 12 [6 favorites]


Sorry, I don't mean to derail, but does this mean it's ok to just keep referring to him as Kim Jong-Un? Is that essentially the same as always calling 45 "Donald Trump?"

I'm not sure I understand the exact question but here's my general approach: think of convention/protocol, accuracy, and clarity. Basically, what would reporters do?

We usually refer to world leaders by surname (and maybe title). For Kim Jong-un, using the full name avoids confusion about which Kim we're discussing; it's not just Jong-un because of convention. It's not entirely equivalent to always using full-name "Donald Trump" because we don't need his full name to understand whom exactly we're discussing, the linguistic/cultural context or satirical intent, etc.
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 5:28 AM on August 12 [3 favorites]


[I think we have addressed the Kim Jong-un name situation pretty fully at this point, and while not every single member who isn't aware will have read every single comment, and we can't expect that no one will ever make these mistakes again going forward, we can probably let it rest for the moment.]
posted by taz at 5:32 AM on August 12 [5 favorites]


@HeerJeet
If these guys are worried that they'll be replaced by another race, they shouldn't have a movement that is 99% male.


I mean, yeah, but coming from Jeet "the Google manifesto is respectable free speech" Heer, this somehow rankles.
posted by schadenfrau at 5:43 AM on August 12 [19 favorites]


As it happens, Sharpie makes a pretty great ultra-fine-tip pen and it's one of my faves for writing in my planner. As with well-done steak, we don't need to insult all the people who have tiny everyday preferences in common with that man.
posted by Andrhia at 5:43 AM on August 12 [14 favorites]


I mean, yeah, but coming from Jeet "the Google manifesto is respectable free speech" Heer, this somehow rankles.

The I wouldn't read this article where the ACLU is urging Cville to allow nazis to use Emancipation Park for a white pride rally.
posted by Talez at 5:52 AM on August 12 [2 favorites]


I mean, yeah, but coming from Jeet "the Google manifesto is respectable free speech" Heer, this somehow rankles.
I was inexplicably annoyed, too, and then I realized that it's because he should have understood that the KKK goes out to rally with mosquito torches while "their" women are expected to stay home and read aloud.
posted by xyzzy at 5:55 AM on August 12 [3 favorites]


If Trump decided to preemptively strike ... It's just an incredibly stupid strategy

USS Liberty, Bologina Train Bombing, Sinking of the Lusitania, Remember the Maine, Saddam and Yellowcake*, even the start of WWII for America all have things stated at the start and packaged by the leaders and the media that reported them that, upon the ability to know more challenge the narrative given at the start of the event. Heck, it might be possible if the American public had been able to have been offered the things known now back then with the same passion and repetition as the original narrative perhaps history would have had a different outcome.

In the world of today - look at CNN narrative of Sherelle Smith as an example of what happened VS what was reported.

Decided on narratives, packaging them up, repetition of the narrative, and presenting them to the public is how advertising works. I would not put much faith in the ability of my fellow man to somehow sort out what is incredibly stupid.

(*Think about it - in the media environment of today the Metafilter discussion on yellowcake back in the day, would it not have been called "fake news" by the people who claimed it was totes real?)
posted by rough ashlar at 6:00 AM on August 12


(*Think about it - in the media environment of today the Metafilter discussion on yellowcake back in the day, would it not have been called "fake news" by the people who claimed it was totes real?)

Well I don't know about "back in the day" because we never had a big yellowcake thread. But we didn't call the media's toeing of the administration line "fake news", we just called it "bullshit". Because that's what it was, bullshit.
posted by Talez at 6:11 AM on August 12 [6 favorites]


An interesting twist to that nut-job NSC memo, which has been mostly overlooked:

NSC memo exposes ties between Trump Jr. and the White House
Despite having no security clearance, the president's son reportedly ended up receiving a National Security memo. (Melanie Schmitz, Think Progress)
According to two sources who spoke with the outlet, Trump Jr. was one of the people who received the emailed memo, despite not having the proper security clearance or any official position in the Trump administration that would warrant such a transmission. (It wasn’t exactly clear whether Higgins had intended to include him on the list of recipients.) Trump Jr. later passed the message to his father, who reportedly “gushed over it.”

Aside from the obvious security issues surrounding a non-NSC staffer being privy to internal communications, the fact that Trump Jr. then relayed the message to his father flies in the face of the president’s earlier promises to keep his business ties and White House duties separate.
posted by Room 641-A at 6:11 AM on August 12 [26 favorites]


Re: Charlottesville counterprotest

Charlottesville Grants 2 Permits for Counterprotests of Unite the Right Rally, NBC29, 8/9/17 (article contains link to organizers' Facebook page)
The Peoples Action for Racial Justice (PURJ) will now hold demonstrations in both McGuffey and Justice Parks from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. this Saturday.
The counterprotests have started. People are tweeting videos this morning. #Charlottesville #counterprotest
e.g. @letsgomathias
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 6:18 AM on August 12 [9 favorites]


WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO END THIS SHITSTORM?? I just...I mean...I can't...WTF is going to happen to everyone?? This is not sustainable.

Last week I noted that 45's behavior is scarily reminiscent of my Grandma's when she was sundowning with Alzheimer's; but this shit is getting worse and worse and worse.

I envision that assclown POTUS and he has a band of idiots surrounding him and they all take turns trying to distract him by waving shiny things in his face. So he's sitting there is a big ole chair staring at Fox News and has his phone clamped between his tiny little hands and he's got some "rational" adults thinking, "Stop talking about Hilary and about leaks," and so they say:

The Boy Scouts loved you!
Russia did us a favor by expelling diplomats!
Hey, look here, North Korea!
Stop looking at North Korea!!
Pretty Ivanka is going to open a store in your NYC tower!
No, no, NOT North Korea! Look at the pretty girl again!!
Look, look, look! Ivanka is going on a trade tour!!
Stop looking at North Korea!! Fire and fury is BAD!
Look what you did good!! Guam is famous and didn't spend an advertising penny!
No, no, no, wait; Venezuela! They're our neighbor!!

I literally cannot imagine the absolute clusterfuck that is the White House advisory staff. Sanders saying with a completely straight face that he was being sarcastic when discussing diplomatic expulsion. Tillerson having to rationally discuss a NUCLEAR FUCKING WAR scenario.

What is it going to take to get rid of him??
posted by yes I said yes I will Yes at 6:18 AM on August 12 [30 favorites]


In addition to the general Anti-Racism fund

This popular thread lists charities and organizations in Charlottesville that could use some funding against Nazis

And the Charlottesville DSA (@CVilleDSA) has on the street coverage of the counter marches and religious services as well as many good links livestream here
posted by The Whelk at 6:19 AM on August 12 [11 favorites]


I mean, yeah, but coming from Jeet "the Google manifesto is respectable free speech" Heer, this somehow rankles.

I agree and was the person who posted that he had done so, but he has tweeted and recommended a couple rebuttals/takedowns of the article. So not sure if he's just showing alternative views or had a change of heart. He hasn't explicitly commented on or retracted his tweetstorm.
posted by chris24 at 6:23 AM on August 12 [2 favorites]


“You’ve become extremely famous,” Trump said. “All over the world they’re talking about Guam.”

oh my fucking god that's all that matters to him.


I curate an almost daily news stream for developing economies and suddenly, a few days ago, Guam started showing up in the news searches BEFORE this thing of north korea showed up in MSM.

Just an observation.
posted by infini at 6:25 AM on August 12 [17 favorites]




Mitheral: Hurricanes in the US average less than 50 deaths per year. If you can actually hit what you target, say over the pits at the Indianapolis 500 (300,000 attendees), you are going to exceed the total number of Americans ever killed by a hurricane by several orders of magnitude.

This is definitely true, but it just casually tosses that "if you can hit what you target" thing in as if it's a coda. It's actually a very hard problem. Hitting a target the size of a stadium from 6,000 miles away is something the US can only barely do, and we've been using Tinian as a test target from Vandenburg since the 1950's. There is some debate as to whether even we could hit targets in the USSR where the trajectory is polar rather than east-west, since we've never tested one in that direction and the physics are a bit different. NK's one test of a missile powerful enough to theoretically reach the US showed no evidence of being aimed very much at all, and broke up on re-entry. I would be surprised if they could hit Los Angeles, much less a sporting event venue.
posted by Bringer Tom at 6:29 AM on August 12 [10 favorites]


The counterprotests have started. People are tweeting videos this morning. #Charlottesville #counterprotest
e.g. @letsgomathias


My favorite part of clicking that link is the video thumbnail looks like only a handful of people. Then the video starts, and pans left to show people as far as you can see. Then pans right, and ditto. I have no doubt the counter protests will faaar outnumber the tiki torch nazis this morning. With almost zero notice.
posted by Roommate at 6:32 AM on August 12 [5 favorites]


I hope so, but from my 15,000km perspective the Nazi marches seem to be getting bigger and more organised.
posted by Joe in Australia at 6:35 AM on August 12 [3 favorites]


At least some Christians are still... Christians.

Christianity Today: The Use of Nuclear Weapons Is Inherently Evil


And in that vein...

@johnpavlovitz
If your God is cool with nuking an entire country but not with two guys marrying—you might consider exchanging that God.
posted by chris24 at 6:37 AM on August 12 [84 favorites]


How long does it take to modify a miniaturized nuke into a salted/maximum-fallout weapon? In that case, accuracy seems like less of an issue; "in the general vicinity of the jet stream" may be good enough.
posted by XMLicious at 6:40 AM on August 12


Ask MeFi: How do I rewind & start my Saturday with some cartoons instead of tiki nazis and a crushing sense of dread
posted by salix at 6:49 AM on August 12 [32 favorites]


I have no doubt the counter protests will faaar outnumber the tiki torch nazis this morning. With almost zero notice.

I am trying to charge up my hope-meter by watching clips of the Vice Mayor's speech, that wall of interfaith counterprotesters facing a smattering of pathetic dudes in camo with semi-automatic rifles*, the veritable rainbow of ethnicities/genders/ages/backgrounds/etc vs the creepy drab monochrome of the white supremacists...

*Are those things loaded?! No, right? But 2017...

I really really hope for minimum violence today.
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 6:50 AM on August 12 [1 favorite]


Errhh. Latest 3 tweets from Christopher Mathias (HuffPo):

Not even 10am and the first physical fight has broken out.

Chants of "From the Midwest to the south, punch a Nazi in the mouth." Safe to say antifa is here

Now antifa and militia groups trading barbs

posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 6:54 AM on August 12 [7 favorites]


@johnpavlovitz
If your God is cool with nuking an entire country but not with two guys marrying—you might consider exchanging that God.


Uh, the problem has never been with God.

A friend of mine went to a "Christian" high school. A friend of his had premarital sex and got pregnant. Because she didn't believe in abortion, she decided to keep it. The school expelled her for "setting a bad example."

Here's a girl who decided to actually walk the walk regarding her beliefs, and they decided to punish her for it. I guaran-fucking-tee you that there were other girls at that school who made discreet appointments at the doctor under similar circumstances.

It is so contrary to the teachings of Christ that I almost cannot fathom the cognitive dissonance necessary to reach that decision. Have they ever actually read the New Testament? Or the concept of forgiveness? I wonder if they're even aware that one of Christ's most beloved of followers was a prostitute?

How is it that the least Christ-like among us most visibly carry the public banner of Christianity?
posted by leotrotsky at 6:58 AM on August 12 [40 favorites]




"Mr President, how will the administration respond to the situation in San Marino?"

"Obviously there's a lot going on in San Marino, I'm very familiar with the problems. if San Marino thinks it can make threats to the United States they are going to face Real Ultimate Power, and I do mean Real Ultimate Power, and I would even say punishment. It's not punishment; it's gunishment. The world will look at San Marino and puke its guts out and then slurp up the vomit and puke it out a second time, because that's what America is all about. Next question." [FAKE]
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 7:05 AM on August 12 [2 favorites]


*Are those things loaded?! No, right? But 2017...

They probably have a full magazine but no round in the chamber. Police should be checking every one of their weapons to make sure they're legal under VA law (no more than 20 round magazines) but they probably won't.
posted by Talez at 7:05 AM on August 12 [5 favorites]


Ask MeFi: How do I rewind & start my Saturday with some cartoons instead of tiki nazis and a crushing sense of dread

If you get Disney XD, they appear to be showing Ducktales all day.
posted by Pope Guilty at 7:06 AM on August 12 [5 favorites]


Mathias has also been tweeting in every possible thread he can find that antifa counter-protesters threatened to beat him up while he asked for photographs as they recovered from pepper spray/physical assault.

Joe in Australia: You (and others, I dunno) may be interested in this Medium article I am reading about the rise of extremism in the US.
Perhaps most troubling are the group dynamics at work here, which are indicative of an identity movement’s spiral towards violent extremism. Though the groups that will coalesce in Charlottesville represent a spectrum of far-right viewpoints, they all share a common goal: Redefining the boundaries of the American identity — i.e., what it means to be a “real” American, and who gets to be included in that group.

This process involves several steps, the first of which is framing the identity of the “in-group” (those deemed to be “real” Americans) as inseparable from the derogation of an “out-group” (those who aren’t included in an increasingly narrow construction of American identity). The groups that make up the Unite the Right rally have differing perspectives on exactly where to draw the line separating the in-group from the out-group. The definition of the out-group is flexible and may include Muslims, immigrants, Jews, African Americans, liberals, feminists, and more. This so-called “fluidity of groups” often accompanies the transition to extremism.
posted by xyzzy at 7:07 AM on August 12 [6 favorites]


How long does it take to modify a miniaturized nuke into a salted/maximum-fallout weapon?

It's not as simple as it sounds. Ground bursting any ordinary nuke will toss up a lot of radioactive crap, as the US learned in some of the postwar tests. For fallout without using the environment to provide material, the smaller and more miniaturized the bomb the less matter it has to contribute to the fallout cloud, so simply hitting the jet stream doesn't do much.

The best radiological weapon for killing a lot of people in a short period of time is your ordinary Teller-Ulam H-bomb. The fallout from the second stage uranium tamper, most of the mass of the bomb, is very intensely radioactive, but has a relatively short half-life so you can wait it out in a shelter. The theory behind cobalt bombs is that instead of using the neutron flux to fission U238 you use it to turn natural Co59 to intensely radioactive Co60. This pretty much requires redesigning the second stage, since cobalt is a much lighter tamper material than uranium. Since Co60 has a half-life of 5 years or so, waiting it out in a shelter is impractical, and while it's not quite as radioactive as fission products it's quite radioactive enough to kill you in a short time. But if there is only one bomb, it's practical to just run from the hot zone and come back in fifteen or twenty years.

Anyway, while I am worrying about whether NK has weapons like this, I will finish converting my Ford Focus into a space shuttle. Even money says I succeed first.
posted by Bringer Tom at 7:11 AM on August 12 [20 favorites]


Thing is, Trump has always relished the idea of having nuclear weapons at his disposal, and now he's got them.

Wait a second. Or perhaps longer than a flash of light. Is there some actual proof of this claim that can be shown before the wave of heat arrives?

My memory is he called 'em terrible at points in the past. At one point he agreed with Hillary that they are a problem. In fact , worse than global warming.

The problem is Trump is all over the map and from a 'what is truth' with him is like nailing down jello.

But what CAN be pointed at is:

"The biggest problem this world has today is not President [Barack] Obama with global warming, which is inconceivable, this is what he's saying. The biggest problem we have is nuclear - nuclear proliferation and having some maniac, having some madman go out and get a nuclear weapon. That's in my opinion, that is the single biggest problem that our country faces."

And the follow up to that, as it exists is:

Hey, is Donald a madman who has gone out and gotten a nuke or 2 by getting a public office that has 'em?
posted by rough ashlar at 7:14 AM on August 12


So is this nuclear dick waiving all just a sham to play to the base?

...Phrasing?

Also: dick waiving? like you forego or relinquish it somehow? (I'm finding this more amusing than it should be.)
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 7:15 AM on August 12 [25 favorites]


I hope so, but from my 15,000km perspective the Nazi marches seem to be getting bigger and more organised.

One overhead view from last night of the Tiki Dancers was a little encouraging. They managed to make a complete round of the statue but the torches didn't overflow the square around it. And this is with a lot of publicity and people bussed in from all over. This movement is loud, obnoxious, and evil, but it's not bringing in the masses. And as others have said, the counter-protesters will outnumber them.

From the Midwest to the south, punch a Nazi in the mouth.

Thank you for that. Completely brightened my morning.
posted by honestcoyote at 7:18 AM on August 12 [7 favorites]


I understand you can also use gold/198Au instead of cobalt. Trump would love that, gold bombs.
posted by XMLicious at 7:19 AM on August 12


Hey, is Donald a madman who has gone out and gotten a nuke or 2 by getting a public office that has 'em?

I've been avoiding analyzing the NK Nukes because why use an ICBM when you can smuggle them in using a cargo container, but this thing where DJT is either a Russian Asset with nukes, or insane person with nukes (Why not both?).

It's too early to be drinking, but hey, it's 2017, and here we are.
posted by mikelieman at 7:20 AM on August 12 [5 favorites]


Thing is, Trump has always relished the idea of having nuclear weapons at his disposal, and now he's got them.

Wait a second. Or perhaps longer than a flash of light. Is there some actual proof of this claim that can be shown before the wave of heat arrives?


While relished is maybe not the best word, he has been fixated on them for decades and recently talked about why can't we just use them. In addition to the recent threats of using them.

MoJo: Trump Has Been Thinking About Nuclear War for Decades. Here’s Why That’s Scary.

MoJo: Does Donald Trump Believe Nuclear War Is Inevitable?

the Hill: Scarborough: Trump asked adviser why US can't use nuclear weapons
posted by chris24 at 7:21 AM on August 12 [11 favorites]


As near as I can make out, Trump's personal goals have consistently been -- and I think I have the order right --
  1. Bask in the adoration of admirers
  2. Make money
  3. Terrify and punish his enemies
If you want to know what Trump thinks of any other topic, such as war in general or nukes, you have to ask how it plugs into those three motivations. His bid for the Presidency was completely motivated by #1, and now that he is the greyhound who caught the rabbit he is using the Presidency to further all three. He will be pro or anti anything precisely to the degree it maximizes his outcome on these three goals, and nothing else really matters to him.
posted by Bringer Tom at 7:21 AM on August 12 [31 favorites]


Here's the meaty bit from the article linked by adamvasco above:
So now we have confirmation that Trump and Kim aren’t merely hurling threats at each other out of context; they’ve been communicating the entire time.

This means, in effect, that Trump and Kim both know to ignore each other’s public posturing. They’re relying instead on that backchannel for whatever they’re actually saying to each other.
Based on this tweet from the AP: BREAKING: APNewsBreak: Senior US diplomat has engaged in back-channel diplomacy with NKorea for several months; contacts ongoing.
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 7:23 AM on August 12 [19 favorites]


Trump would love that, gold bombs.

It would be right in character, for sure. Use something expensive when something cheap will be just as effective and then declare bankruptcy. I'd say he would then only need a white cat to complete his transformation into a Bond villain, but there is that thing on top of his head...
posted by Bringer Tom at 7:25 AM on August 12


Trump Has Been Thinking About Nuclear War for Decades. Here’s Why That’s Scary.

I'm not sure why that required anyone spelling out why that's scary. 'I don't know what's wrong with a US president masturbating to Armageddon. We all have our vices. I mean, I really like Snickers bars.'
posted by A Terrible Llama at 7:25 AM on August 12 [16 favorites]


This means, in effect, that Trump and Kim both know to ignore each other’s public posturing. They’re relying instead on that backchannel for whatever they’re actually saying to each other.

Remember how Obama using a backchannel to negotiate the Iran deal was the worst thing ever?
posted by T.D. Strange at 7:44 AM on August 12 [22 favorites]


In re the nazis: anti-nazi protesters need a diversity of tactics, because we won't be able to win by punching every time.

My thought is that marching a few hundred tiki torch nazis around an empty campus is pretty stupid except for the images it generates - it's mainly about images that can be shared on the internet.

And also, if we can punch to win decisively, it's good to have images of our side punching - but images of our side getting beat down are bad, and images of exciting fights are also bad, because it attracts the "fighting is fun" demographic among young white men.

So I feel like alternate tactics need to be developed that will destroy the image-making power of the nazis.

My immediate thought is that you can fuck up a protest with a small number of people if you have a brass band and enough people to defend it if they link arms and stay tight (we have left wing brass here, which brought it to mind). So, for instance, you mess up image-making if people are marching around....followed by tuba. Or followed by "The Worms Crawl In". There's risk to that, because a violent surge would overwhelm smaller numbers, but even there "nazis beat up bassoonist" is not as photogenic as "nazis slug it out with antifa".

I really think that noise and music are possible weapons when we don't have numbers, and I think it's important to remember that an otherwise low-purpose event like the march round an empty campus exists to create images.
posted by Frowner at 8:04 AM on August 12 [74 favorites]


I'd gladly let all sides protest, and look as dumb/cool/awful/whatever as they want. As long as that statue comes down. Progress.
posted by rc3spencer at 8:12 AM on August 12


Sockin'inthefreeworld: AP: BREAKING: Senior US diplomat has engaged in back-channel diplomacy with NKorea for several months; contacts ongoing.

I have a hard time believing this is true until we get confirmation from other sources and reports of progress. Until then it feels like either damage control from the administration ("We're not crazy, we swear!"), an attempt to justify a war in advance ("Look, we tried talking, but the time for talking is over, the bombers are in the air"), or the media's constant need to try to rationalize his crazy actions as some kind of 4D chess rather than confront the existential threat facing our nation.

Since there always seem to be various factions fighting in the administration, there's also the chance someone sane got him to agree to an attempt at diplomacy in a meeting ("Sure, whatever") and he's completely forgotten it's happening. Even if they manage to hammer out a deal, I could still see him abandoning it at the last second because someone else gets in his ear about how it's a bad deal that makes him look weak or Fox & Friends pushes for war that morning. Don't forget that in the calculation - North Korea has to look at the Paris Accord and Trump's attempts to not honor the Iran deal and wonder if they can even trust his word. Also: if Trump was really, truly committed to diplomacy he would've nominated a FUCKING AMBASSADOR TO SOUTH KOREA.
posted by bluecore at 8:17 AM on August 12 [13 favorites]


This means, in effect, that Trump and Kim both know to ignore each other’s public posturing. They’re relying instead on that backchannel for whatever they’re actually saying to each other.


Told you they're DMing while shouting in public. It's all a frikken adulation and profit puppet show for DJT
posted by tilde at 8:18 AM on August 12 [6 favorites]


So what I'm hearing about Charlottesville is that the protest was scheduled for today. The one last night was unannounced and unpermitted, which is why the counter-protesters were outnumbered. I also heard there were 1000 alright assholes and 5000 counterprotesters.

Just thinking of SHS responding to a question about this makes me stabby. If I had a plasma torch I'd go cut down the statue.
posted by Room 641-A at 8:23 AM on August 12 [1 favorite]


Trump would absolutely start a shooting war as part of his puppet show, because he is incompetent.
posted by Artw at 8:25 AM on August 12 [2 favorites]


it's mainly about images that can be shared on the internet
If my twitter feed is any indication, that propaganda war has already begun. They've created "compare/contrast" images of "BLM protests" with the tiki trot, highlighting images of destroyed property and injured protesters from riots contrasted against pretty tiki lights surrounding a founding father who was also a slave owner. It's gross.
posted by xyzzy at 8:25 AM on August 12 [3 favorites]


I've been cycling through the twitter feeds and that SURJ Facebook streaming link from above. Now more fights (no articles yet but #charlottesville has a bunch of videos), lots of pepper spray or mace (see e.g. SURJ stream), tasers (Mathias twitter)...

about 10 minutes ago:
Charlottesville City Hall twitter: Local emergency declared
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 8:30 AM on August 12 [2 favorites]


Alt-right watcher JJ MacNab (of the Bundy stand-off and Oregon occupation fame) has a Charlottesville twitter list going.

And it's useful to compare the images on that list, with white supremacists openly carrying riot shields, armor and weapons with no police contact; to the unarmed Ferguson protesters immediately confronted by militarized response from riot police.
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:35 AM on August 12 [48 favorites]


Most of the Right-Wing Media Seems Embarrassed by the Charlottesville Neo-Nazis
You might assume this is huge news in right-wing media. It isn't, at least so far. It's nowhere on Breitbart's front page (though the front page does feature stories such as "Starbucks Attracts Refugees with Latent TB"). Daily Caller? Nothing. Infowars? Nothing, although Infowars and its news spinoff Newswars both feature an AP story about the League of the South's perpetual calls for Southern secession.

Below the top block of stories (about North Korea), Fox News has the front-page headline "VIRGINIA ON GUARD: White Nationalist Rally Prompts Safety Precautions." The story, which is fairly neutral, focuses on today's planned protests (and Governor Terry McAuliffe's call for everyone to stay away from the protest site); there are a couple of paragraphs about what happened last night. At Drudge the demonstration is a sidebar (Venezuela is Drudge's top story), and Drudge also features the secession story, which is above the story about last night's demonstration.

Maybe it's early yet -- none of these folks are serious 24/7 newsgatherers. Maybe they haven't lined up their talking points yet. (How do we blame this on liberals?)

But they're not jumping on the story. They seem rather embarrassed by it.

Understandably, I think -- it gives the game away. They've spent so much time telling us that liberal accusations of racism are hype that they don't want to expose evidence that they're not hype. They've put so much effort into telling us that defenders of Confederate monuments wish only to preserve "heritage" and "history" that they inevitably want to downplay a demonstration that links support of Confederate monuments to white nationalism.
posted by tonycpsu at 8:36 AM on August 12 [31 favorites]


Richard Painter, just now: I will call for the impeachment of the president if he doesn't fire Sebastian Gorka, Steve Bannon, and all the other fascists immediately.
posted by Room 641-A at 8:37 AM on August 12 [23 favorites]


Nobody seems to have commented on this. This is one step above a fucking crayon.

I dare you to graduate your infant from crayon to Sharpie. It will be glorious and probably go viral on the internets.
posted by srboisvert at 8:42 AM on August 12 [22 favorites]


I like the mockery in his statement.

@senorrinhatch
Their tiki torches may be fueled by citronella but their ideas are fueled by hate, & have no place in civil society.
posted by chris24 at 8:45 AM on August 12 [37 favorites]


Baked Alaska just took pepper spray. He's rolling on the ground and wailing and not acting like an alpha. The fact that a small part of me feels bad for him means that my human empathy hasn't been completely destroyed by this new dark age, I guess?

Also: gathering's declared an unlawful assembly as per the cops on the live feed. That's all folks.
posted by Rust Moranis at 8:45 AM on August 12 [8 favorites]


Also: if Trump was really, truly committed to diplomacy he would've nominated a FUCKING AMBASSADOR TO SOUTH KOREA.

Just think for a moment about who would he appoint. Denis Rodman is my optimistic guess but I think Charles Manson is more likely. Not doing anything is probably the very best thing the Donald could do.
posted by srboisvert at 8:47 AM on August 12 [1 favorite]


Y'all, I am as troubled by the NK dynamics as all of you. But I also keep thinking: Trump lobbed the trans ban in the military on the very same day the Muller's team sprung a surprise raid on Manafort. Trump is now posturing in an even more outrageous, "can't look away" fashion--even though, as other reports provide context that US military in Guam is not on alert, dependents are not being evacuated, other diplomatic channels to NK are and have been open, etc, etc.

Yes, the big war dance he's doing matters and is wrong and it stupid dick-waving gamesmanship.

I'm holding out hope that it's also another panicked smokescreen arising from a move by the Mueller team that we'll learn about in a month or so.
posted by Sublimity at 8:48 AM on August 12 [13 favorites]


Along the lines of what Frowner said, when the EDL showed up to demonstrate in Liverpool, counter protestors had a PA, which they used to blast Yakety Sax at them, as they were basically run out of town. It was very effective .
posted by skybluepink at 8:50 AM on August 12 [33 favorites]


The rally in cville has apparently been declared an unlawful gathering. Still guessing the cops aren't going to do jack nor shit.
posted by schadenfrau at 8:50 AM on August 12 [1 favorite]




Still guessing the cops aren't going to do jack nor shit.

They're clearing the park, lots of Nazis walking away, without arrest, to parts unknown. Seems like a great plan to turn them loose on the town right now. It's still early.
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:54 AM on August 12 [2 favorites]


The rally in cville has apparently been declared an unlawful gathering. Still guessing the cops aren't going to do jack nor shit

Arrest counter-protesters?
posted by Room 641-A at 8:54 AM on August 12 [6 favorites]


That would be my bet as to what happens next.
posted by Artw at 9:00 AM on August 12


The rally was scheduled to start at noon.

A lot of people have left but a lot of people are still there (there's a photo of Nazis facing off with or pushing back on a line of riot police)

ACLU et al reporting on twitter that police are bringing in tank/armored vehicle
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 9:02 AM on August 12 [1 favorite]


Chinese president speaks with Trump and urges calm over North Korea
Xi Jinping says all sides should avoid rhetoric
Trump’s ‘locked and loaded’ tweet earns rebuke from Angela Merkel
(today's Guardian)
It seems no one really knows what is going on or what to do about it while Trump is being obnoxious and ignorant. Trump administration in a nutshell.
posted by mumimor at 9:05 AM on August 12 [4 favorites]


I've been scrolling through twitter, because I don't care about my mental health? Anyway, I expected to be completely horrified by all the video, and I am. But that's not my only reaction. My first reaction is "they look fucking ridiculous."

We're all trained on videos with fairly high production values, especially for anything action-related. We have really high expectations for what "looks cool," and anything else tends to look kind of...silly? So I find myself weirdly pleased that amateur fascist theatrics might not play in the modern age. These people are all about their toxic masculinity and their pride. Looking ridiculous unmans them. Live video is not their friend.
posted by schadenfrau at 9:06 AM on August 12 [7 favorites]


@JuliusGoat
Imagine if these people ever faced actual oppression.
- Nobody is trying to legislate away their right to marry. Nobody is trying to make them buy insurance to pay for 'male health care.'
- The law never: Enslaved their great-grandparents, Robbed their grandparents, Imprisoned their parents, Shot them when unarmed
- There is no massive effort at the state and local level to disenfranchise them of the vote.
- There is no history of centuries of bad science devoted to 'proving' their intellectual inferiority.
- There is no travel ban on them because of their religion. There is no danger for them when they carry dangerous weaponry publicly.
- Their churches were never burned. Their lawns never decorated with burning crosses. Their ancestors never hung from trees
- Their mothers aren't being torn away by ICE troopers and sent away forever. They won't be forced to leave the only country they ever knew.
- The president has not set up a hotline to report crime committed at their hands.
- They are chanting 'we will not be replaced.' Replaced as ... what? I'll tell you.
- Replaced as the only voice in public discussions. Replaced as the only bodies in the public arena. Replaced as the only life that matters.
- THIS is 'white people' oppression: We used to be the only voice. Now we hold the only microphone.
- THIS is 'white man' oppression: We face criticism now. We were free from it, because others feared the consequences.
- THIS is 'oppression' of white Christians in this country: Christmas used to be the only holiday acknowledged, now it's not.

- I would so love to see these people get all the oppression they insist they receive, just for a year. Just to see.
- Give them a world where you ACTUALLY can't say Christmas. A world where the name "Geoff" on a resume puts it in the trash.
- Give them a world where they suddenly get a 20% pay cut, and then 70 women every day tell them to smile more.
- Give them a world where their polo shirt makes people nervous, so they're kicked off the flight from Pittsburgh to Indianapolis.
- Give them a world where they inherited nothing but a very real understanding of what oppression really fucking is.
- Give them a world where if they pulled up on a campus with torches lit and started throwing hands, the cops would punch their eyes out.
- Put THAT in your Tiki torches and light it, you sorry Nazi bitches. Good morning, by the way, how is everybody.
posted by chris24 at 9:11 AM on August 12 [226 favorites]


Trump: Madman theory 2.0, this time minus the theory.
posted by runcifex at 9:13 AM on August 12 [1 favorite]


I'm watching a FB live stream of a Nazi protester called Andrew, going by the name Black Rebel. He got pepper sprayed earlier and is out for revenge. Carrying a baseball bat and a wooden shield. Roaming now looking for antifa stragglers. I would not want to meet these creeps. JFC.
posted by stonepharisee at 9:19 AM on August 12 [5 favorites]


Trump: Too crazy for Boys Town, too much of a boy for Crazy Town
posted by kirkaracha at 9:22 AM on August 12 [5 favorites]




Jesus Christ, it's amazing to me how much these people expect to be insulated from consequences. I mean...I can't...like what? They fully expect to be able to livestream their hunt for humans to beat with a goddamn baseball bat, in the middle of the goddamn day, and just have that be fine?

WHAT MUST THAT BE LIKE.
posted by schadenfrau at 9:23 AM on August 12 [40 favorites]


They fully expect to be able to livestream their hunt for humans to beat with a goddamn baseball bat, in the middle of the goddamn day, and just have that be fine?

Hey now, have some sympathy for the oppressed white man.
posted by Rust Moranis at 9:25 AM on August 12


ACLU of Virginia reports that, after original park cleared, crowds are moving down the street to Justice Park. Counterprotesters are already there.

Someone else on twitter was reporting violent fights among those dispersing from first park site; an especially violent one (involving guns) in a parking garage.

AP tweet: Virginia governor declares state of emergency in response to white nationalist rally.

HuffPo article with live updates (by Andy Campbell and Christopher Mathias): White Supremacists Show Up To A City That Didn’t Want Them, Chant ‘Blood And Soil’
(Anyone else have a good aggregate link?)
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 9:25 AM on August 12 [1 favorite]


Honestly, the fact of the rally is one thing. But seeing the level of violence and bullshit that the police are willing to tolerate from the right is, to me, much more frightening.
posted by schadenfrau at 9:26 AM on August 12 [44 favorites]


What's with the damn Tiki Torch thing anyway? Seems like a weird little bit of cultural signaling for a bunch of idiotic racial/cultural puritans. Seems bizarrely lacking in self awareness, like how Ted Nugent doesn't have any gratitude or appreciation for the black musical traditions that created an audience to appreciate his hack blues-derivative lead guitar work and make him the accomplished, successful ubermensch he is today in his own imagination.
posted by saulgoodman at 9:26 AM on August 12 [4 favorites]


My brain is also having a really hard time reconciling how ridiculous these people look with how scary their actions are. It's like watching the Star Wars Kid do something violent.
posted by schadenfrau at 9:28 AM on August 12 [8 favorites]


Fascism Has Already Come To America - "It is impossible to read about the post-Reconstruction, pre–Jim Crow era without alarms going off in your head. The complete capitulation to segregation and Jim Crow was caused by the collapse of the institutions restraining it: Southern populism, Southern conservatism, and Northern liberalism. As Woodward wrote, "The South’s adoption of extreme racism was due not so much to a conversion as it was to a relaxation of the opposition. All the elements of fear, jealousy, proscription, hatred, and fanaticism had long been present ... What enabled them to rise to dominance was not so much cleverness or ingenuity as it was a general weakening and discrediting of the numerous forces that had hitherto kept them in check.""
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:28 AM on August 12 [25 favorites]


My brain is also having a really hard time reconciling how ridiculous these people look with how scary their actions are. It's like watching the Star Wars Kid do something violent.

I mean Himmler was kinda the original Star Wars Kid. Dude was a mega-nerd failed chicken farmer who tried to telepathically communicate with mystical gnomes.

Also: looks like the second nazi congregation is being dispersed by the cops.
posted by Rust Moranis at 9:31 AM on August 12 [2 favorites]


Live Buzzfeed feed
posted by Talez at 9:33 AM on August 12 [1 favorite]


@GOPChairwoman
The hate & bigotry on display in #charlottesville is dangerous & cowardly.
- Free speech may give them the right to do this but also empowers us to unite to loudly speak out against it.

@EWErickson
Since all people are created in the image of God, there can be no superior race. All are equal at birth. White supremacy is against God.

@SpeakerRyan
The views fueling the spectacle in Charlottesville are repugnant. Let it only serve to unite Americans against this kind of vile bigotry.

@EdWGillespie
My statement on the events in Charlottesville https://edforvirginia.com/2017/08/12/gillespie-statement-events-charlottesville/

---

Nothing from the fascist-in-chief.
posted by chris24 at 9:35 AM on August 12 [19 favorites]


I mean Himmler was kinda the original Star Wars Kid

And the rest of them were into a bunch of adolescent occult insanity, right?

I suppose, yeah. The ones who make it hard to be afraid of them are the ones who don't get knocked down. But I wonder if Hitler et al would have gained critical political mass if the public could see all of their ridiculousness.

Not something you want to test, obviously, but imma take my silver linings where I can find them. Dudes look silly.
posted by schadenfrau at 9:36 AM on August 12 [4 favorites]


@GOPChairwoman
@EWErickson
@SpeakerRyan
@EdWGillespie


Shorter GOP officials: "Stop giving away the game! You're not supposed to be so open about it, it's much more effective to enact racist policies in Congress".
posted by T.D. Strange at 9:41 AM on August 12 [15 favorites]


NYT: Mueller Is Said to Be in Talks With White House About Interviewing Officials
In a sign that the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election will remain a continuing distraction for the White House, the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, is in talks with the West Wing about interviewing current and former senior administration officials, including the recently ousted White House chief of staff, Reince Priebus, according to three people briefed on the discussions.

Mr. Mueller has asked the White House about specific meetings, who attended them and whether there are any notes, transcripts or documents about them, two of the people said. Among the matters Mr. Mueller wants to ask the officials about is President Trump’s decision in May to fire the F.B.I. director, James B. Comey, the two people said.

That line of questioning will be important as Mr. Mueller continues to investigate whether Mr. Trump obstructed justice in the dismissal of Mr. Comey.
posted by chris24 at 9:41 AM on August 12 [22 favorites]


Re: music being used to effectively counter the nazis protesting - I have a counterprotest wish list going on Amazon, that consists of a mouth harp, slide whistle, siren whistle, wood block, and triangle - I don't think it would take an exceptional amount of talent for people to put this to excellent use, it would just be a matter of effective timing, and it's all relatively inexpensive.
posted by MysticMCJ at 9:43 AM on August 12 [6 favorites]


What's with the damn Tiki Torch thing anyway? Seems like a weird little bit of cultural signaling for a bunch of idiotic racial/cultural puritans.

For 95% of the public, "tiki torches" are simply "the torches you put in your back yard around your deck". The word "tiki" most likely doesn't mean anything to them, it's just a name, like "loveseat" or "fruit bowl". "Tiki" is just what those things are called.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 9:43 AM on August 12 [10 favorites]


What's with the damn Tiki Torch thing anyway? Seems like a weird little bit of cultural signaling for a bunch of idiotic racial/cultural puritans.

Because to make a nazi torchlight parade you need torches, and most of them wouldn't know how to make one without burning their face and arms off, and decorative tiki torches are like 10 bucks at walmart?
posted by lmfsilva at 9:43 AM on August 12 [37 favorites]


Cheers in Charlottesville as police arrest Richard Spencer.
posted by stonepharisee at 9:47 AM on August 12 [72 favorites]


That was the intent all along, wasn't it. Make himself a martyr.
posted by yesster at 9:49 AM on August 12 [4 favorites]


Tom Perriello is on the ground and still winning twitter: "Favorite moment so far- two white supremacists with wooden shields & swords lept in terror as gay black man offered them a bottle of water."
posted by T.D. Strange at 9:53 AM on August 12 [83 favorites]



That was the intent all along, wasn't it. Make himself a martyr.


There's really no win that's a pure win with these fuckers. They love being martyrs for a cause and they love being visible assholes, so if you arrest them or protest them you are giving them what they want. But they also want to be open white supremacists, so if you just let them do that, you're also giving them what they want. But anything that leads to Richard Spencer experiencing physical discomfort is at least a partial victory.
posted by soren_lorensen at 9:53 AM on August 12 [21 favorites]


It doesn't matter. Fascism is a movement based on imaginary white grievance. "Martyring" them by creating consequences doesn't make them more right or more extreme. There is literally zero reason not to.
posted by Pope Guilty at 9:53 AM on August 12 [42 favorites]


The consensus among the nazi livestreamers is that they greatly outnumbered the antifa scum and were on the verge of total victory when the police forced them to disperse. Blame is all on the cops. Can't overstate how hopeful this is as a developing dynamic: the more antagonism between them and the police, the less chance they have of ever wielding state-sanctioned violence on a local level.
posted by Rust Moranis at 9:53 AM on August 12 [35 favorites]


Nothing from the fascist-in-chief.

I saw a Melania tweet on TV. She's against hate but for free speech. Why she's the spokesperson IDK.
posted by puddledork at 9:54 AM on August 12 [1 favorite]


I saw a Melania tweet on TV. She's against hate but for free speech. Why she's the spokesperson IDK.

Yes, just saw that she tweeted this:

@FLOTUS
Our country encourages freedom of speech, but let's communicate w/o hate in our hearts. No good comes from violence. #Charlottesville

And Cory Gardner, R senator from CO.

@SenCoryGardner
The hate being spewed in Virginia has no place in this country. It's deeply disturbing and un-American.
posted by chris24 at 9:58 AM on August 12 [1 favorite]


That's not a statement, that's a nothing. They are pro Nazi.
posted by Artw at 9:59 AM on August 12 [16 favorites]


@FLOTUS
Our country encourages freedom of speech, but let's communicate w/o hate in our hearts. No good comes from violence. #Charlottesville


Well that's some vapid bothsides bullshit. "Hey, can't we all just get along, even when there's a group of people out there who think you should be rounded up into cams and executed? I mean, come on guys. Guys? Guys, come on."
posted by soren_lorensen at 10:00 AM on August 12 [30 favorites]


@FLOTUS
Our country encourages freedom of speech, but let's communicate w/o hate in our hearts. No good comes from violence. #Charlottesville


Tell it to your fucking husband, Melania. He promotes this shit, he revved up and emboldened these assholes.
posted by FelliniBlank at 10:01 AM on August 12 [41 favorites]


National Treasure John Dingell doing a statement right.

@JohnDingell
I signed up to fight Nazis 73 years ago and I'll do it again if I have to.

Hatred, bigotry, & fascism should have no place in this country.
posted by chris24 at 10:02 AM on August 12 [105 favorites]


As per a couple of live streams I watched, the Nazis kept all of their wives and kids away from the scene but decided that macing a student in a wheelchair was an okay move. I don't know how you have (protect the vulnerable) alongside (mace an obviously vulnerable person) unless I don't know you don't think the other side has less equal human status or something.
posted by angrycat at 10:08 AM on August 12 [18 favorites]


Favorite moment so far- two white supremacists with wooden shields & swords lept in terror as gay black man offered them a bottle of water."


Ohhhhhhh yeah .... I offered a "not-Obama" protester a sealed water bottle from the middle of a sealed 24 pack I was Carrying. He actually said something about not being able to trust it ... shoulda laughed at him but I thought he was a lone crazy guy
posted by tilde at 10:14 AM on August 12 [1 favorite]




Take your business elsewhere, Nazi scum.

Gotta love C'ville.
posted by FelliniBlank at 10:16 AM on August 12 [11 favorites]


Oh look, someone finally made him tweet a noncommittal statement "We ALL must be united & condemn all that hate stands for. There is no place for this kind of violence in America. Lets come together as one!"

Why won't he say the words "radical white supremacists"?
posted by T.D. Strange at 10:27 AM on August 12 [44 favorites]


I suppose, yeah. The ones who make it hard to be afraid of them are the ones who don't get knocked down. But I wonder if Hitler et al would have gained critical political mass if the public could see all of their ridiculousness.

The Adventures of Superman, presented by Kellogg's Pep Cereal:
On June 10, 1946, a Superman plotline began bearing the title “Clan of the Fiery Cross.” The episodes were broadcast daily, so the 16th and final episode appeared on June 25. In the story, Jimmy Olsen is managing a baseball team, but when he replaces his top pitcher with a more talented newcomer, the sorehead kid who has lost his slot ends up in the clutches of the “Clan of the Fiery Cross,” who volunteer to intimidate the “insufficiently American” star pitcher with burning crosses and the like. Jimmy Olsen (of course) takes the issue to Clark Kent, and in short order the Man of Steel is taking on the men in white hoods.

Over the course of about two weeks, the shows exposed many of the KKK’s most guarded secrets, including code words and rituals. The Klan relied a great deal on an inscrutable air of menace and mystery, and the Superman serial stripped the Klan of that mystique utterly. Almost overnight, the Klan’s recruitment efforts began drying up completely. Source
Previously, previously-er, previously-est
posted by BS Artisan at 10:27 AM on August 12 [36 favorites]


Oh look, someone finally made him tweet a noncommittal statement "We ALL must be united & condemn all that hate stands for. There is no place for this kind of violence in America. Lets come together as one!"

Except probably he didn't
posted by CheesesOfBrazil at 10:40 AM on August 12 [3 favorites]


The word "tiki" most likely doesn't mean anything to them, it's just a name, like "loveseat" or "fruit bowl". "Tiki" is just what those things are called.

Look it up on Wikipedia.
posted by spitbull at 10:43 AM on August 12 [1 favorite]


So sometime in the past week, someone here mentioned that they've modified "donald Trump" into something...else. "Don't [something] [something]", maybe?

Anyone recall this? I was laughing so hard but evidently forgot to favorite it.
posted by notsnot at 10:46 AM on August 12


Except probably he didn't

While I agree Scavino or somebody probably tweeted this, the iPhone vs Android thing has kinda lost it's predictive power. Both the "locked and loaded" and "Helpfully we will never have to use this power" tweets came from iPhone as did "Mitch get back to work and repeal Obamacare" and all the other Mitch attacks.
posted by chris24 at 10:47 AM on August 12


Dumb Old Chump?
posted by Tobu at 10:48 AM on August 12 [2 favorites]


Photo of Richard Spencer getting arrested. Accidental Renaissance painting style.
posted by spitbull at 10:51 AM on August 12 [10 favorites]


Oh look, someone finally made him tweet a noncommittal statement "We ALL must be united & condemn all that hate stands for. There is no place for this kind of violence in America. Lets come together as one!"

No way Donald Trump came up with three complete, coherent sentences in a row.
posted by Room 641-A at 10:52 AM on August 12 [5 favorites]


Hearing that a car just drove into protestors.
posted by Artw at 10:57 AM on August 12 [2 favorites]


Accidental Renaissance painting style.

Clicked through for the cackling demons, was sorely disappointed
posted by tivalasvegas at 10:57 AM on August 12 [5 favorites]


NBC: "People on the scene say multiple injuries reported after 2 vehicles struck a small crowd of people standing on 4th St near Timberlake Drugs"
posted by Rust Moranis at 10:58 AM on August 12 [1 favorite]


[Noting again that there is now a dedicated thread for the Charlottesville situation. Not that it's unrelated to the larger everything, but to the extent that there's smaller updates vs. big picture stuff the smaller stuff would be better tracked over there rather than this thread.]
posted by cortex at 11:10 AM on August 12 [10 favorites]


That's been my argument re: tiki. They're doing racism wrong. They're doing attention whoring right. So right, they're winning and there's no good damn response yet from anyone other than paid TV commentators.
Anti-racism doesn't get the airtime racism does. Anti-racist stalwarts don't get a social moral blessing, but Gorka and Bannon get security clearances. While we have our heroes, they aren't recognized in the way those who are taking a jackhammer to what's left to our national connective tissue. I find it so hard to feel optimistic for this country, save for the daily acts of common good between everyday people.
/rant /been years since I've posted a rant, hello again.
posted by moonbird at 11:24 AM on August 12 [4 favorites]


The Culture Wars Have Come to Silicon Valley

“What does it do to somebody when they feel like they literally can’t express themselves?”

White-hot trash from the New York Times while literal fascists and nazis are swarming Charlottesville. The "culture war" has been ongoing, this is just one of the few times rich white men have been hit. "Why can't I say women are inferior in the workplace on the workplace bulletin board? Wahhhh." Um, maybe because that makes you a garbage person, and people don't like working with garbage persons, what with the workplace being an environment that should foster teamwork rather than whiny victimy bullshit and telling your colleagues they are genetically inferior. #FailingNewYorkTimes
posted by Cookiebastard at 11:38 AM on August 12 [38 favorites]


How can things keep getting worse.
posted by A Terrible Llama at 11:45 AM on August 12 [9 favorites]


How can things keep getting worse.

I learned a long time ago to never ask that question. You're pretty much guaranteed to get an answer.
posted by azpenguin at 11:55 AM on August 12 [13 favorites]


Why won't he say the words "radical white supremacists"?

Because those words don't make any sense! Radicals are Muslims, not white people.
posted by flabdablet at 11:57 AM on August 12 [3 favorites]


I learned a long time ago to never ask that question. You're pretty much guaranteed to get an answer.

I didn't have high expectations for daily life or even life in general, I just never expected to get the answer multiple times every day.
posted by A Terrible Llama at 12:02 PM on August 12


@ThePlumLineGS (WaPo)
THREAD:
1) This new NYT report suggests Mueller is very focused on Trump obstruction: [two screenshots] - NYT: Mueller Is Said to Seek Interviews With West Wing in Russia Case
2) First shows Mueller is recreating facts leading up to Comey firing. He may want to know more about Sessions/Rosenstein/Trump meeting.
3) I wrote about that meeting here: http://wapo.st/2wSnmMT One Q: Whether Trump deliberately sought Rosenstein memo as cover for firing.
4) The second of those screencaps makes two points. The first is that Comey warned Priebus against WH-FBI discussions of ongoing probe.
5) But *after* that warning, Trump told Comey to drop probe into Flynn. NYT says it's unclear if Priebus relayed Comey's warning to Trump.
6) But it's hard to imagine Priebus would *not* have conveyed such a warning from FBI director. Mueller seems to want to know either way.
7) If Priebus did convey that warning, that would blow apart GOP line that Trump overstepped with Comey b/c he was just "learning the rules"
8) Second point in second screen cap is that Priebus may have direct knowledge of meeting in which Trump demanded Comey drop Flynn probe.
9) Prosecutors want Priebus to verify key details re that meeting. In background: Trump himself confirmed he fired Comey b/c of Russia probe
10) The key is that every one of these data points may add to a *pattern,* which prosecutors seek to establish in obstruction cases. FIN
posted by chris24 at 12:03 PM on August 12 [25 favorites]


@DrDavidDuke retweeting @realDonaldTrump: I would recommend you take a good look in the mirror & remember it was White Americans who put you in the presidency, not radical leftists.

White Supremacists say the President of the United States is beholden to them. Thank about that.
posted by zachlipton at 12:08 PM on August 12 [88 favorites]


NEWSWEEK EXCLUSIVE: NORTH KOREAN MISSILE CLAIMS ARE ‘A HOAX’ Warning: annoying autoplay
posted by mumimor at 12:08 PM on August 12


That looks like the same thing as "North Korea’s “not quite” ICBM from the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists," from yesterday, if you're getting deja vu.

Live streaming link for Trump's VA bill signing, if you want to see if he says anything besides "Charlottesville sad!"
posted by zachlipton at 12:16 PM on August 12


White Supremacists say the President of the United States is beholden to them. Thank about that.

So there's two pee pee tapes?
posted by peeedro at 12:18 PM on August 12 [5 favorites]


It's just piss all the way down, at this point.
posted by lydhre at 12:26 PM on August 12 [7 favorites]


Live streaming link yt for Trump's VA bill signing

This was originally scheduled for 12:00, and on TV they've had box in the corner since at least 11:55. There are five or six veterans on the stage, including an elderly man who looks to be around 75. They have been standing there over 30 minutes.
posted by Room 641-A at 12:30 PM on August 12 [4 favorites]


Trump, on stage, calls the veterans "fellas." The first veteran in line is a woman.
posted by Room 641-A at 12:36 PM on August 12 [13 favorites]


"...on many sides..."
posted by bird internet at 12:36 PM on August 12 [10 favorites]


Did he just walk off and forget to sign the bill and had to come back and make a lame excuse about a change in location for the signing?
posted by chris24 at 12:45 PM on August 12 [12 favorites]


Yes, and then he refused to respond to pleas for him to renounce the support of white nationalists.
posted by Rust Moranis at 12:49 PM on August 12 [11 favorites]


That was a dog whistle shitshow.
posted by Barack Spinoza at 12:51 PM on August 12 [19 favorites]


My fave part is him checking his watch about 30 seconds in. Real old man-I-can't-quite-see check on the watch.
He also has managed to really perfect the dementia-where-am-I-again? pause for dramatic effect.
( oh yeah I was supposed to sign something?)
posted by rc3spencer at 12:56 PM on August 12 [2 favorites]


"seeks to affirm the right of Southerners "

you ain't no southerner, bub
posted by eustatic at 1:00 PM on August 12 [1 favorite]


@LarrySabato:
A favorite JFK quote: "The hottest places in hell are reserved for those who, in times of great moral crisis, maintain their neutrality.'
posted by chris24 at 1:01 PM on August 12 [56 favorites]


"The Nazis are in the open and proud." so people are working on identifying all the nazi marchers and posting the information on a website with high PageRank for all eternity, right? RIGHT?

Dropping dox on from the pictures to demonstrate how inexpensive the automated surveillance state is will get its own high page rank over time. Or a slot as a speaker at Defcon I bet.
posted by rough ashlar at 1:09 PM on August 12


With everything else going on today that's so awful I was able to have a laugh at the classic Trump moment where he pats himself on the back for being bipartisan while not actually being bipartisan. He won't acknowledge the democrats that helped pass the bill he's signing, then takes credit for acknowledging them.

Trump: I want to thank congressman Phil Roe, Senator Johnny Isakson -- they, two people have been working so hard -- Senator Dean Heller for their dedicated efforts to get this bill through congress. Was very very tough for reasons that I guess I understand but it was not easy. And I'll tell you that Phil and Johnny and Dean worked very very hard to get it through. And by the way I can also say others, [turns to VA Secretary Shulkin] and even some democrats. Want to say their names? Go ahead say their names.

Shulkin: [approaches mic] Senator Tester and Representative Walz were key in getting this done, Mr President.

Trump: See? I can do it.
posted by peeedro at 1:16 PM on August 12 [18 favorites]


Trump is such a simple man. He hates women, he hates Black people, he hates immigrants, he hates poor people, and he loves the man who who bailed him out of a billion dollars of debt. There's not much else going on and it's so obvious when he tries to pretend otherwise.
posted by SakuraK at 1:19 PM on August 12 [42 favorites]


"The hottest places in hell are reserved for those who, in times of great moral crisis, maintain their neutrality.'

In Dante, they endlessly chase after banners, pursued by clouds of stinging insects, iirc.
posted by thelonius at 1:20 PM on August 12 [11 favorites]


Just a heads-up for anybody with HBO: Memory of Justice, a *long* and incredible documentary about Nuremburg and the nature of man's descent into violence and savagery (esp. the French in Algeria and the US, later, in Vietnam) is up on HBO docs. Also, if you've got Amazon Prime, you can get a free week of Amazon Channels which comes with HBO documentaries.

The NYRB just had a really excellent piece on the movie, maybe check that out if you're interested.

What with Charlottesville and, well, everything, might be worth a watch.

Edit: Here's a preview, too.
posted by TheProfessor at 1:50 PM on August 12 [12 favorites]


I wonder how much of the regalia the neo-confederates bring to their events was bought by Moscow.
posted by ocschwar at 2:02 PM on August 12 [2 favorites]


Zero.
posted by The Whelk at 2:05 PM on August 12 [1 favorite]


First they came for those that wore Punisher tshirts, and I said nothing, for I do not shop at hot topic...
posted by ian1977 at 2:07 PM on August 12 [4 favorites]


you mess up image-making if people are marching around....followed by tuba. Or followed by "The Worms Crawl In".

My wife has told me of a certain park in Omaha, circa 2000, that had fallen into disrepute. Drug dealing and correlated activities were common. You know the type. One day the problem was being discussed at a meeting of the local neighborhood association. A woman spoke up and said she'd go sit in that park and knit, as a deterrent. A few others thought that was a good idea, so they made a thing of it. They simply walked in...and took their park back. And it was so successful, more joined in. So long as they were there, nobody wanted to deal drugs under the watchful eye of knitting grannies.

It's a different situation, but it could certainly be adapted to planned protests.
posted by perspicio at 2:07 PM on August 12 [55 favorites]


This is us. This is what America is. We don't get to let ourselves off the hook for this by blaming another country.
posted by zachlipton at 2:07 PM on August 12 [49 favorites]


Trump: See? I can do it

Yeah, he just demonstrated that he, personally, could not do it.

Besides, bragging that "yes I can NOT be an asshole to some of the people who helped get this done" is like a three-year-old bragging to mommy about how they made a big boom-boom in the potty, only the toddler has an excuse.
posted by darkstar at 2:28 PM on August 12 [9 favorites]


[A few deleted. Hi folks, I'm just coming to this now but let's take the Charlottesville stuff over to the thread about Charlottesville please.]
posted by LobsterMitten at 3:16 PM on August 12 [1 favorite]


This is us. This is what America is. We don't get to let ourselves off the hook for this by blaming another country.
posted by zachlipton at 2:07 PM on August 12 [18 favorites +] [!]


Richard Spencer has been supported by the family cotton plantation in northern Louisiana. Which is no doubt subsidized by the US Farm Bill.
posted by eustatic at 3:20 PM on August 12 [16 favorites]


Of course Richard Spencer is a plantation owner. Because the writers have given up and outsourced the plot to a poorly-trained neural net. *headdesk*
posted by SakuraK at 3:24 PM on August 12 [47 favorites]


Axios, Jonathan Swan: Trump suspects Bannon of leaking, putting job in jeopardy
President Trump has told close associates that he believes Steve Bannon is behind damaging leaks about White House colleagues, putting the chief strategist's job in fresh jeopardy, sources close to the president tell me.

Trump has told associates he's fed up with what he sees as self-promotion by Bannon, who did not join the core team this week at the president's golf club in Bedminster, N.J.

Bannon's time with Trump has diminished since the new chief of staff, retired Marine Gen. John Kelly, took over and imposed discipline on the circus around the Oval Office.

Bannon declined to comment.
Of course, we've heard this song and dance entirely too many times before, but the anti-Bannon reports seem to have reached a new intensity over the last few days, with a couple of reports saying that Trump is upset over how much credit Joshua Green's "Devil's Bargain" gives Bannon for the election.
posted by zachlipton at 3:27 PM on August 12 [35 favorites]


President Trump has told close associates that he believes Steve Bannon is behind damaging leaks about White House colleagues

I think I pulled something with the severity of my involuntary feigned surprise reaction. Gosh, Donnie, could it really be Bannon? The guy holed up in his own little circle of cretins with no real job description and his own press office and a rolodex that's like 90% Nazi trolls who disseminate coordinated shit stirring? Man, if only literally everyone else had figured this out last fall during the transition, maybe somebody could have warned you.

Somewhere, Reince Priebus cries into his drink. Nobody feels sorry for him.
posted by jason_steakums at 4:16 PM on August 12 [12 favorites]


I feel sorry for his drink.
posted by Joey Michaels at 4:27 PM on August 12 [41 favorites]


President Trump has told close associates that he believes Steve Bannon is behind damaging leaks about White House colleagues

Ya think? Him and Jared Kushner, too. Who does he think is leaking inside information from his inner circle, the valet?

I can't wait until Sessions is shat upon enough to stop giving fucks and present evidence to Trump of both of these guys' leaking. Better yet, he just starts prosecuting them -- as Trump has demanded -- without saying anything first. Protected from retaliation, ironically, by Mueller's obstruction of justice investigation.
posted by msalt at 4:30 PM on August 12 [2 favorites]


President Trump has told close associates that he believes Steve Bannon is behind damaging leaks about White House colleagues, putting the chief strategist's job in fresh jeopardy, sources close to the president tell me.

Bannon is of course the leak for this very information.
posted by srboisvert at 4:38 PM on August 12 [3 favorites]


Bannon is of course the leak for this very information.
posted by srboisvert at 4:38 PM on August 12 [+] [!]


That man is obsessed with ouroborusing.
posted by SakuraK at 4:57 PM on August 12 [21 favorites]


Scaramucci euphemism level 10,000
posted by DoctorFedora at 4:59 PM on August 12 [6 favorites]


Did someone get thrown under the ouroborus?
posted by thelonius at 5:00 PM on August 12 [23 favorites]


"if I didn't know any better I'd think that angry garbage bag full of gin and a skeleton we hired to weaponize the press might be leaking damaging info to reporters for his own gain..."
posted by jason_steakums at 5:06 PM on August 12 [6 favorites]


John Marshall points out the obvious:
Over the course of the afternoon, a number of Republicans have condemned the marchers. Some actually condemned Trump for failing to do so. Late this afternoon, former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee tweeted a generic but clear condemnation of the white supremacist protestors. It made me think, “Even Mike Huckabee, one of the awfullest people in public life, today can manage this.”

But that reminded me of the fact that the white supremacists and nazis have actually long been something of a gift to politicians who are if not racists themselves then entirely indifferent to racism as a political force in American society. By making themselves the public face of ‘racism’, these morons create an easy enemy to pivot off of. Those politicians get to pay lip service to the notional anti-racist public consensus by denouncing racism in its most avowed and buffoonish form. As I said, in political terms, it’s less an obligation than a gift, an out. After all, who can’t denounce jerks running around with swastikas on their arms or chanting “white power”?

Who can’t? Well, Donald Trump can’t.
posted by peeedro at 5:15 PM on August 12 [102 favorites]


NYT: Police and Protesters Mobilize for Trump’s Return to His Own Home
The group is involved in the planning of two protests, one focused on health care and set for Sunday evening outside Trump Tower and an antiwar march on Monday that will begin at the New York Public Library at Bryant Park and end at Trump International Hotel.

Those are just a few of the demonstrations that have begun to take shape around New York since Mr. Trump’s plans were announced this week. Also planned are a gathering for “peace and sanity” at Grand Army Plaza in Brooklyn on Sunday morning, and the inflation of a giant, Trump-shaped rat by a Chelsea art gallery. The rat is to be positioned at a not-yet-disclosed location on Monday.
...
The Police Department has estimated that the cost of protecting Mr. Trump when he is in New York is around $308,000 per day. His wife, Melania, and his son Barron continued to live in Trump Tower during the school year, and the cost to protect their home was between $127,000 to $146,000 a day, according to the police.

The police urged people to avoid the area around Trump Tower during Mr. Trump’s visit, when numerous streets will be closed around one of the city’s busiest thoroughfares. Starting at midnight on Sunday, 58th and 55th Streets will be shut to traffic from Madison Avenue to Sixth Avenue, and there will be restricted access for certain vehicles on 56th Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenues, according to the police. Fifth Avenue will remain open to southbound traffic, with some restrictions at certain points during the president’s stay. Along Fifth and Madison Avenues, the police will perform random inspections at vehicle checkpoints.
posted by zachlipton at 5:46 PM on August 12 [8 favorites]


There's something different about this terrorist attack that makes the President reluctant to describe it as a terrorist attack, but I can't quite put mein finger on it... 🤔
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 5:56 PM on August 12 [44 favorites]




Thing is, Trump has always relished the idea of having nuclear weapons at his disposal, and now he's got them.

Feel free to delete if this is too deraily, but when I read this I suddenly flashed back several years ago to a gripping game of Battlestar Galactica. For those unfamiliar with the game, it traffics in suspicion and tension as one or possibly two of the players will be Cylons working to defeat the humans while the humans are trying to avoid this defeat and simultaneously trying to work out who among them is the enemy. As well, the Galactica has a very limited supply of nuclear weapons, good for last-ditch efforts to defend against waves of attackers.

In this particular game, Admiral Adama had wound up in the brig due to the maneuvering by the Cylons. While in the brig, a character can do very little, naturally. During Adams's stint in the brig, the two Cylons came to light, and all our best efforts to get Adama out were vetoed by the player playing Tigh because in his words, "No, I have the nukes! I am in command!" He was human; he knew Adama was human; he knew without Adama's contributions, the humans were fighting an uphill battle against the Cylons, but to the very end he fought it. And I mean to the very end: the humans were defeated and the entire human race was wiped out, all because one guy wanted to control the nukes.

Annoying when it happens in a board game; terrifying when it happens IRL.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 6:19 PM on August 12 [13 favorites]


Especially terrifying when the guy in real life is a fucking asshole with no loyalty to anyone but himself and also dementia.
posted by SakuraK at 6:26 PM on August 12 [3 favorites]


Yes, but Donald Trump was always known to be a Cylon... '70s version.
posted by oneswellfoop at 6:26 PM on August 12 [1 favorite]


Especially terrifying when the guy in real life is a fucking asshole with no loyalty to anyone but himself and also dementia.

hey hey hey... be fair.

he's loyal to putin
posted by entropicamericana at 6:28 PM on August 12 [6 favorites]


Yeah but on the actual series, wasn't Tigh a Cylon?
posted by Bringer Tom at 6:28 PM on August 12 [7 favorites]


Since I'm bringing back old-timey insults for treasonous dirt bags, here's one just for someone of wealth hailing from NYC.

Donald Trump is a fucking copperhead. After today, there is no doubt. He conspiring with the fucking Confederates against our Nation.
posted by Slap*Happy at 6:30 PM on August 12 [27 favorites]


@maggieserota
Everything happening now is a dumber version of an event preceding it:
Stupid Watergate
Dumb Cuban Missile Crisis
Dipshit Third Reich
posted by ZeusHumms at 6:31 PM on August 12 [92 favorites]


Trump: "We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence, on many sides. On many sides."

All Lives Batter
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 6:42 PM on August 12 [7 favorites]


Here's a comment I posted in the thread about Charlottesville, but I think has relevance here.
There need to be many, many pointed questions for elected Republicans like Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnell, Marco Rubio, Jeff Flake, and anyone who supported Donald the White Nationalist last year. I want to know whether they think the institutional Republican party bear any responsibility for attracting shitflies like David Duke and Richard Spencer to their banner. I want to know what it was in their platform that made those Neo-Nazi copraphages feel so at home in the Republican party. If they don't understand the role that they, the so-called leaders of the Republican party, played in the growth of domestic, radical, white supremacist action within the United States, then their condemnations aren't really worth much more than used toilet paper.
I think trying to play both sides of the 'white nationalist radical (y/n)?' game could be made to seriously backfire on the Republicans in power. A substantial portion of their base are the Disturbed Deplorables, so condemning them may be alienating, especially if The Jackass really gets on their case about it. Similarly, anyone who is opposed to Neo-Nazis and has any sense of history understands how these invertebrates have enabled their radical base for years. Let's make the stench of Duke, Trump, and Spencer stick to the likes of Ryan, McConnell, Rubio, et al. until their are drummed out of the government.
posted by Excommunicated Cardinal at 7:30 PM on August 12 [16 favorites]


Not only that, Excommunicated Cardinal, but think how quickly they'd exploit the situation if the terrorists today had been left-affiliated. They've had a FESTIVAL with the Steve Scalise shooter. Imagine if it were on a Charlottesville-sized scale.

We're* nuts if we don't link every bit of this toxic, low, depraved Nazi activity to Republican Party politicians and policies.

*individual meme-posters on social media, the DNC, really anyone with any sense at this point
posted by witchen at 8:12 PM on August 12 [7 favorites]


I've been a state of exhausted heartache at the shitstream of the last couple of days (...following a pretty terrible year-or-so), but I was delighted and re-energized by reading a transcript of Elizabeth Warren's speech at Netroots Nation today. (Link is to Vox. Not a huge fan of author Jeff Stein's framing.)
posted by Anoplura at 8:19 PM on August 12 [15 favorites]


Important HuffPost article from a couple of days ago: Trump's agencies are learning to
ignore their boss


Brinkley said Trump’s presidency has close parallels with the Nixon era. Now, like then, career public servants and military leaders appear to be siding with the law and the Constitution against Trump’s impulses.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 8:34 PM on August 12 [18 favorites]


Watching the news today... I am just done, 100% DONE, with anyone who still calls themself a Republican. I realize that I need to be professional and work with some in a professional capacity, but I want mutual defriending and excision from personal lives beyond that. What happened today was disgusting and there is a complete moral vacuum beyond some tepid tweets from the party that has brought us to this.
posted by TwoStride at 9:07 PM on August 12 [27 favorites]


So far, the reports about Trump looking to ditch Priebus turned out to be right, and reports about very intense arguments between Trump and Sessions (back before public attacks) were almost certainly right; so the news about Bannon being on the outs seems very plausible to me. Bannon is backed by Mercer, who reportedly convinced him to stay last time around.

..I've never seen a machine so oiled..
posted by rainy at 9:35 PM on August 12 [1 favorite]


A well oily machination.
posted by biogeo at 9:53 PM on August 12 [2 favorites]


I think any leaks or rumors from within the White House need to be heavily discounted. We know already that the President himself leaks inside gossip.
posted by notyou at 10:05 PM on August 12 [3 favorites]


What did he leak before?
posted by rainy at 10:44 PM on August 12 [1 favorite]






*individual meme-posters on social media, the DNC, really anyone with any sense at this point

Good luck with the DNC, they are basically the This is Fine dog on this.
posted by Artw at 12:52 AM on August 13 [9 favorites]


Does anyone have a link to the protest march starting at Bryant Park on Monday or any more information? I was planning to be there around midday with my young nephew, do I need to make alternate plans?
posted by TWinbrook8 at 5:02 AM on August 13


Idk. Keith Ellison has been tweeting up a storm this am, linking to Intercept articles about right wing terrorism, a video the us military made to help citizens recognize and respond to facism in 1947, and retweeting the #ImpeachTrump, #FireBannon, #FireGorka, and #FireMiller stuff that Painter started yesterday. Doesn't seem thisisfine.jpg to me.
posted by xyzzy at 5:04 AM on August 13 [17 favorites]


Less than 24 hours ago, I wrote, WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO END THIS SHITSTORM?? I just...I mean...I can't...WTF is going to happen to everyone?? This is not sustainable.

Then Charlottesville happened and our MOTHERFUCKING PRESIDENT'S REACTIONS ARE:

"We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence, on many sides. On many sides. It's been going on for a long time in our country. Not Donald Trump, not Barack Obama. This has been going on for a long, long time..."

REMEMBER, IT'S NOT ABOUT HIM. HE DIDN'T DO THIS. Even an ardent Trump supporter is going to question many sides. What the hell could he mean by many sides? Nazis went out and attacked people--I mean, that's the only thing to condemn right now. But then Trump talked about kids should be able to go outside and play (WTF?!) and wrapped up his remarks with:

"We have record -- just absolute record employment. We have unemployment, the lowest it's been in almost 17 years. We have companies pouring into our country. Foxconn and car companies, and so many others, they're coming back to our country. We're renegotiating trade deals to make them great for our country and great for the American worker. We have so many incredible things happening in our country. So when I watch Charlottesville, to me it's very, very sad."

I'm actually scared to see what he does today to shift the news and it makes me more and more ready to pack my bags and go to Canada and I wish I was kidding but I'm not anymore.
posted by yes I said yes I will Yes at 5:07 AM on August 13 [8 favorites]


In case anyone was wondering, he was LYING about the unemployment rate:

In June 2017, the national unemployment rate for Americans 16 and over was 4.4%, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This number is among the lowest since 2007, but not since 17 years ago. In July 2000, the unemployment rate was 4%, according to the BLS.

But where did Potus get this erroneous information? Breitbart News.

He was also lying about companies coming back to the USA because of him. That's not actually happening.
posted by yes I said yes I will Yes at 5:12 AM on August 13 [34 favorites]


yes I said yes I will Yes: I'm actually scared to see what he does today to shift the news and it makes me more and more ready to pack my bags and go to Canada and I wish I was kidding but I'm not anymore.

We're setting up refugee camps for refugee claimants coming in from the U.S. You can't come in at an official border crossing, though. You have to cross at a place like Roxham Road in Quebec.
posted by clawsoon at 5:16 AM on August 13 [4 favorites]


Many thanks to Anoplura for posting the link to Elizabeth Warren's speech at Netroots nation.

The only thing I would change about that fabulous speech, is replacing this:
We’re going to keep Planned Parenthood open, and we’re going to make sure women have access to safe, legal abortions.

with this:
We’re going to keep Planned Parenthood open, and we’re going to make sure women are never again forced to give birth if they choose not to.
posted by yoga at 5:52 AM on August 13 [21 favorites]


Took to google and found this helpful link:Take Action NYC re protests' times and locations.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 5:53 AM on August 13


Sublimity: " But I also keep thinking: Trump lobbed the trans ban in the military on the very same day the Muller's team sprung a surprise raid on Manafort. "

I wouldn't read to much into the timing. Trump could have picked practically any day for his trans ban and there would probably be a 50/50 chance _something_ significantly bad for him was also happening. Practically a certainty if you include the day before and after.
posted by Mitheral at 6:25 AM on August 13 [10 favorites]


It is fun watching the ACLU getting dragged thanks to the Virginia chapter bravely standing up for the rights of people who want to take those rights away from others. It's particularly fun watching people defend the ACLU as defending the Constitution, not (just) Nazis.

Yeah, it's a document that explicitly condones and enables violence, and proclaims liberty and justice for all despite its authors owning slaves who apparently did not see that contradiction. When civil liberties and the Constitution differ, as it often does, the ACLU is perfectly willing to throw civil liberty away.
posted by Merus at 6:45 AM on August 13 [5 favorites]


White House plotters working to 'eject' Donald Trump, says former communications chief Anthony Scaramucci

Currently the entirety of the article is:
Donald Trump's former communications director Anthony Scaramucci, who the President fired last month, has said people inside the White House are working to "eject" Mr Trump, according to BBC.

More to follow...
Take with as much salt as you can safely spare...
posted by Buntix at 6:46 AM on August 13 [3 favorites]


Anthony who?
posted by Room 641-A at 7:01 AM on August 13 [10 favorites]


What did he leak before?

He talks to members of the press regularly and occasionally those comments make it into the news, sourced to anonymous "White House official" or "senior White House official". Here's an unmasking of one such time (Independent): Donald Trump appears to be his own anonymous source after attacking media for bad practice
posted by notyou at 7:09 AM on August 13 [7 favorites]


The leaking is nothing new:

Donald Trump masqueraded as publicist to brag about himself
The voice is instantly familiar; the tone, confident, even cocky; the cadence, distinctly Trumpian. The man on the phone vigorously defending Donald Trump says he’s a media spokesman named John Miller, but then he says, “I’m sort of new here,” and “I’m somebody that he knows and I think somebody that he trusts and likes” and even “I’m going to do this a little, part time, and then, yeah, go on with my life.”

A recording obtained by The Washington Post captures what New York reporters and editors who covered Trump’s early career experienced in the 1970s, ’80s and ’90s: calls from Trump’s Manhattan office that resulted in conversations with “John Miller” or “John Barron” — public-relations men who sound precisely like Trump himself — who indeed are Trump, masquerading as an unusually helpful and boastful advocate for himself, according to the journalists and several of Trump’s top aides.
Sad, sad, little man.
posted by Room 641-A at 7:28 AM on August 13 [25 favorites]


From back when the U.S. government was against Nazis.

@OmanReagan
1947 anti-fascist video made by US military to teach citizens how to avoid falling for people like Trump is relevant again.

VIDEO
posted by chris24 at 8:01 AM on August 13 [29 favorites]


@OmanReagan
1947 anti-fascist video made by US military to teach citizens how to avoid falling for people like Trump is relevant again.


The scary thing is that people refuse to acknowledge their prejudice even when it's pointed out so it makes it more difficult for them to self-recognize them being used like this. Like when dipshit Peter Cvjetanovic says "I care for all people".
posted by Talez at 8:11 AM on August 13 [9 favorites]


At least one person at the rally worked at Top Dog Hot Dogs, a hot dog stand in Berkeley with a completely insane white supremacist blog on their web site. To be fair, they fired him when the pictures started circulating. But still... white supremacist hot dog stand in Berkeley....
posted by miyabo at 8:25 AM on August 13 [9 favorites]


Sad, sad, little man.

Even this week I said to a friend I might have a fuckload of insecurities, but if we listed all of Donnies insecurities behind the braggadocio we could fill at least two volumes. He's a needy old fuck who deep down knows the only reason he's not watching Fox in his sweaty underwear on a run-down NYC flat is all the money daddy left to him, and needs every sycophant to tell him how great he is and make up as much bullshit on his prowess and how everyone respects him, because once that illusion is gone, there's nothing left.
He had hoped being elected would make him "presidential" and cement that illusion, but he though this would be the usual swindle he could pull with minimal work. Instead of being the big man with the big recognition he always wanted to be, he's being exposed as a big phony, and what everyone should be concerned is what he'll do to keep the mask from falling off.
posted by lmfsilva at 8:32 AM on August 13 [6 favorites]




things 2017 has ruined for me:
the federal government
top dog
posted by murphy slaw at 8:43 AM on August 13 [2 favorites]


"Trump comments were good, He didn't attack us. When asked to condemn, he just walked out of the room. Really, really good. God bless him."
posted by flabdablet at 8:44 AM on August 13 [24 favorites]


When I see Trump and his bluster I think of "Brush With Greatness," the episode of The Simpsons where Marge starts painting again. When she paints Mr. Burns, the Trump of Springfield, she shocks everyone by painting the Burns that she sees. Sad!
posted by Room 641-A at 8:47 AM on August 13 [3 favorites]


White House doubles down on Trump’s Charlottesville comments, ignores calls to directly confront white supremacy

The shitty statement that didn't do anything mentioned in this link? Well...

@JessicaHuseman
The WH just put out a statement saying "of course" Trump condemns white supremacists and "nephew-Nazi" groups (?). It is unsigned.
posted by chris24 at 9:01 AM on August 13 [13 favorites]


Is there a link to the original statement?
posted by Room 641-A at 9:09 AM on August 13


Tom Bossert (DHS) is on Tapper right now insisting on "both sides" and refusing to even say "neo-nazi" or "white supremacist" or to condemn or assign any blame to racism/white nationalism. This is chilling.
posted by Rust Moranis at 9:20 AM on August 13 [16 favorites]


Is there a link to the original statement?

Not that I can find besides the CNN screenshot, but here Ali Vitale says she deleted her earlier tweet that contained the typo.

@alivitali
Deleted last tweet bc of corrected version sent by pool. New WH statement on #Charlottesville says POTUS condemns white supremacists, KKK.

---

Good to know the WH is banging out statements on a smartphone and sending them out unvetted.
posted by chris24 at 9:23 AM on August 13 [10 favorites]


Holy shit that Top Dog Hot Dogs blog is like an acid trip crossed with a badly phrased Reddit search. How has that gone unnoticed in Berkeley of all places? Or are there enough right wing wackos camped under a bridge somewhere to keep their several branches in business? I mean to begin with 2/3 of the Berkeleyites I know (a lot) wouldn't touch a hot dog if it was the last food on earth and gluten free.
posted by spitbull at 9:25 AM on August 13 [2 favorites]


New WH statement on #Charlottesville says POTUS condemns white supremacists, KKK.

That's not what it says. It says he condemns "all forms of violence" which "of course includes" [but is not limited to] fucking Nazis "and other extremist groups" -- like for instance, anti-racist counterprotestors.

It's actually even worse than the shit Trump said yesterday.
posted by FelliniBlank at 9:28 AM on August 13 [28 favorites]


Berkeley is like a weird magnet for Nazi types trying to make a point about "free speech". I'd be suprised if it wasn't full to the gills with idiots who washed up their trying to make the news, failed and then just hung around being a nuisance.
posted by Artw at 9:29 AM on August 13 [7 favorites]




Have you seen the rents in Berkeley? Although maybe that explains the hot dog diet that sustains zombie libertarians in the Hot Zone.
posted by spitbull at 9:39 AM on August 13 [5 favorites]


I think Orwell would recognize the attempt to equivocate dignify and condemn.
posted by rc3spencer at 9:40 AM on August 13 [10 favorites]


but if we listed all of Donnies insecurities behind the braggadocio we could fill at least two volumes

That's really *not* how NPD works. If that diagnosis is correct, Trump doesn't personally experience insecurity at all. That's the whole nature of the disorder. He can't ever consciously experience or process emotions related to feelings of self doubt and insecurity, he projects them onto everyone else and can't understand he's the problem. Don't think he feels any of that as insecurity consciously for a minute or that tactics designed to make him feel insecure or doubt himself will work because they won't. They'll just push him further into feeling righteous and unfairly under attack, but not in a way that makes him behave less confident or self conflicted. The opposite. He'll behave more confidently and more certainly the more you'd expect a normal person in the same situation to start choking and tripping themselves up. He'll trip himself up in different ways, but not the ways we'd normally associate with a loss of confidence or bargain basement insecurity.
posted by saulgoodman at 9:42 AM on August 13 [17 favorites]


That's not what it says.

Sorry, I just posted the tweet text to answer Room-641's question about there definitely being a prior version with the nephew-Nazi mistake. The tweet has the full statement attached as an image. The tweet text was just her rough summary of what she attached.
posted by chris24 at 9:44 AM on August 13 [1 favorite]


Adviser [homeland security adviser Tom Bossert]: Trump Didn’t Want To ‘Dignify’ White Supremacy By Condemning It

But he dignifies Muslim extremist terrorism every single chance he can get. (And when he can't, he makes something up.)
posted by greermahoney at 10:11 AM on August 13 [12 favorites]


MSNBC anchor to Howard Dean: Do you think the President is racist, or is he just pandering to the racists who voted for him because he's afraid to lose their support?

Dean: That IS racist.
posted by FelliniBlank at 10:13 AM on August 13 [142 favorites]


Sorry, I just posted the tweet text to answer Room-641's question about there definitely being a prior version with the nephew-Nazi mistake. The tweet has the full statement attached as an image. The tweet text was just her rough summary of what she attached.

Sorry also. I wasn't taking issue with your quoting of the summary tweet. I was taking issue with the tweet summary that distorted the meaning of the original text to make it seem like it was directly condemning white supremacy when it was overtly weaseling out of doing that.
posted by FelliniBlank at 10:19 AM on August 13 [2 favorites]


“I’m Not The Angry Racist They See In That Photo”
‘You’re making me out like some kind of monster at a racist rally!” we sometimes hear people say. Well, you were just photographed frothing from the mouth and chanting white power and nazi slogans at a racist rally. So I’m going to figure that’s probably you.
posted by kirkaracha at 10:38 AM on August 13 [33 favorites]


Trump Didn’t Want To ‘Dignify’ White Supremacy By Condemning It

Really? Does he want to dignify all the other stuff he's constantly condemning by name?
posted by Rykey at 10:45 AM on August 13 [5 favorites]


I've been worried about the danger of misidentifying people as Nazis since the outing started online. The effects spread fast, and the corrections never get as much attention as the original mistake -- which tends to live on over the Internet. I haven't seen the people making the effort talk about their methods; it'd be a little different for me if it was WaPo or some other news outlet.

So far I'm pretty pleased to have seen the identifications bear out. I hope it continues. I worry for people who might be wrongly tarred because of a facial resemblance, but I'm 100% on board with bringing public wrath down on any of these assholes who actually participated in those rallies. Fuck those guys.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 10:45 AM on August 13 [15 favorites]


White rights fucknuts from Russia, Europe, and the US are busy hammering out a new shared mythos (they can't exactly use the Nazi stuff but give it a bit of retconning and they'll all be bros).
posted by Burhanistan at 10:48 AM on August 13 [5 favorites]


Christ, I'm so relieved to hear Dean say that pandering to racists IS racism.
posted by xyzzy at 11:18 AM on August 13 [24 favorites]


occasional reminder that dean's campaign was torpedoed because he kind of had a funny yell once and people said he was unhinged
posted by entropicamericana at 11:24 AM on August 13 [56 favorites]


Hard to remember the America where a "Yee-argh!" could derail a campaign.
posted by octothorpe at 11:34 AM on August 13 [49 favorites]


Speaking of another Dean, I want to see 'palling around with terrorists' thrown at Dean Heller after that pic was found yesterday
posted by fluttering hellfire at 11:36 AM on August 13 [5 favorites]


Hard to remember the America where a "Yee-argh!" could derail a campaign.

I think that America only applied to the Democrats and still exists: a Yee-argh wouldn't have derailed W in 2004 and we basically just went through it again with But Her Yee-argh.
posted by Rust Moranis at 11:40 AM on August 13 [32 favorites]


I am all about naming and shaming people who are Nazis, Confederates, and otherwise show up in public participating in hate rallies, but I'm really uncomfortably with the mirroring of the right-wing "this person has a foreign-sounding name so they're not Amurican" ideology. I know it's probably trying to call attention to the right's hypocrisy and all, but it skirts a little too close to hipster racism for me. There are plenty of reasons to hate this college kid without going after his name and using that as a basis for speculation of his status.
posted by TwoStride at 11:43 AM on August 13 [28 favorites]


Trump Joins the Neo-Confederates (Ed Kilgore, NYMag)
posted by Barack Spinoza at 11:45 AM on August 13 [1 favorite]


Missing my point, Oyeah. 'Palling around with terrorists' was a Sarah Palin attack on Barack Obama during the '08 campaign.
posted by fluttering hellfire at 11:45 AM on August 13 [2 favorites]


A bit more on Scaramucci's interview on This Week this morning: Scaramucci: Bannon's 'toleration' of white nationalism is 'inexcusable'
“I’ve never sat down with Steve Bannon and said, ‘Hey are you a white nationalist or a white supremacist?’ But I think the toleration of it by Steve Bannon is inexcusable,” Scaramucci said.
...
Speaking with ABC News Chief Anchor George Stephanopoulos on "This Week" this morning, Scaramucci criticized the influence of the website Breitbart and Steve Bannon, who was the executive chairman of Breitbart before joining the Trump campaign and later the administration, saying that there's "this sort of 'Bannon-bart' influence" in the White House that he thinks "is a snag on the president."

When asked by Stephanopoulos if that influence stemmed from Bannon, Scaramucci said, "I think the president knows what he's going to do with Steve Bannon."

"Let's leave it up to the president. It's his decision, but at the end of the day, the president has a very good idea of who the leakers are inside the White House. The president has a very good idea of the people who are undermining his agenda that are serving their own interests," Scaramucci added.

Asked if that included Bannon, Scaramucci said "well yeah," before saying, "I would prefer to let the president make the decisions the president needs to make."
...
“If the president really wants to execute the legislative agenda that I think is so promising for the American people, the lower middle-class people and the middle-class people, then he has to move away from that 'Bannon-bart' nonsense,” he said.

“That whole thing is nonsensical. It’s not serving the president’s interests. He's got to move more into the mainstream. He's got to be more into where the moderates are and the independents … that love the president, so if he does that he'll have a very successful legislative agenda,” he said.
He also thinks Lizza didn't misquote him, but was "mischaracterizing" him. Whatever, man.
posted by zachlipton at 11:58 AM on August 13 [7 favorites]


A bit more on Scaramucci's interview on This Week this morning: Scaramucci: Bannon's 'toleration' of white nationalism is 'inexcusable'

I really am looking forward to the point where the (far-too) White House goes full-on Lord of the Flies/Battle Royale and they're all hilariously tripping over petards in their eagerness to betray their erstwhile brethren.
posted by Buntix at 12:08 PM on August 13 [11 favorites]


I love how The Mooch is shitcanned from his job as WH comms director and yet somehow still gets invited by the media onto national news shows as a spokesperson for the Trump administration. The sooner he's consigned to the dustheap of irrelevant forgotten nobodies, the better.
posted by FelliniBlank at 12:15 PM on August 13 [11 favorites]




I think Orwell would recognize the attempt to equivocate dignify and condemn.

Ole George went to fight actual fascists with physical force. He also pointed out how the word years ago was more of a swear word than an actual definition.

And In this quote I'm guessing he'd have damning words for Trump with the recognition of what he is, were Eric Blair alive today.

“People worship power in the form in which they are able to understand it. A twelve-year-old boy worships Jack Dempsey. An adolescent in a Glasgow slum worships Al Capone. An aspiring pupil at a business college worships Lord Nuffield. A New Statesman reader worships Stalin. There is a difference in intellectual maturity, but none in moral outlook”
posted by rough ashlar at 12:21 PM on August 13 [32 favorites]


Heller says he doesn't know the kid.

A) Republicans are going to have a fun time trying to distance themselves from these assholes because in a lot of cases, these assholes are all over mainstream Republican orgs. and events. One of the Tiki Nazis is the president of his campus College Republicans club, and candidates LOVE to hang out with those student groups. They aggressively recruit campaign volunteers from the same demographics the Young Preppy Racist groups do.

B) Hey, Dean Heller: if the shit you do and the shit you say and the shit you and your party stand for is the type of shit that makes neo-Nazis want to get a picture with you, it may be time to ask, "Are we the baddies?" about yourself and the GOP.
posted by FelliniBlank at 12:36 PM on August 13 [51 favorites]


Hey, Dean Heller: if the shit you do and the shit you say and the shit you and your party stand for is the type of shit that makes neo-Nazis want to get a picture with you, it may be time to ask, "Are we the baddies?" about yourself and the GOP.

Yes. This. Republicans - you broke it, you own it. If you're palling around with Nazis and other white supremacists in order to get votes and/or advance your agenda, you can't clutch your pearls and act shocked, shocked! when they go on a rampage.

Broke. Own.
posted by Rosie M. Banks at 1:02 PM on August 13 [21 favorites]


One of the Tiki Nazis is the president of his campus College Republicans club

More than one, I believe! Well, a president and a former president.
posted by Justinian at 1:02 PM on August 13 [4 favorites]


I am having a hell of time keeping Dean Heller and Dean Vernon Wormer separate in my mind.
posted by srboisvert at 1:17 PM on August 13 [7 favorites]


Freebie question for reporters to ask Republicans who try to distance themselves from Nazis:

"You've said you don't know or condone [white nationalist], but it's clear that he has supported you as a politician. What is it about your political positions that white nationalists find so attractive?"
posted by biogeo at 1:31 PM on August 13 [56 favorites]


"You've said you don't know or condone [white nationalist], but it's clear that he has supported you as a politician. What is it about your political positions that white nationalists find so attractive?"
Nah, that just gives them a free out to redirect the conversation to economic policies or other talking points where they are better positioned to keep peddling their bullshit. We've had enough rounds of the "economic anxiety" excuse already, thanks..

Personally I've been thinking maybe it's time to re-visit the "Basket of Deplorables" phrase and hang it around the neck of every mealy-mouthed non-condemner the administration trots out to try to spin this, e.g. "during the election the president was frequently criticized for courting 'deplorable' supporters and refusing to distance himself from so-called alt-right figures, many of whom he has appointed to his administration. Is there any connection between the president and the deplorable behavior we've seen in Charlottesville?"
posted by Nerd of the North at 1:37 PM on August 13 [4 favorites]


A bit more on Scaramucci's interview on This Week this morning: Scaramucci: Bannon's 'toleration' of white nationalism is 'inexcusable'

Man. Maybe I should put some of the money I'm not sending the ACLU anymore toward The Mooch's coke fund.
posted by Artw at 1:45 PM on August 13 [6 favorites]


Personally I've been thinking maybe it's time to re-visit the "Basket of Deplorables" phrase

Fuck no.

She should have called them nazis now and we should call them nazis now. No more cutesy language, it just gives them a get out.
posted by Artw at 1:46 PM on August 13 [24 favorites]


Calling them Nazis is perfectly reasonable. They wear and display Nazi symbols. They give the Nazi salute. They seem to adhere to at least some of the Nazi political platform. How are they not Nazis?
posted by Xyanthilous P. Harrierstick at 1:49 PM on August 13 [20 favorites]


It was entirely reasonable to call them that then.

We'll all pay the price of the compulsion of the media and dems to pull their punches in 2016.
posted by Artw at 2:02 PM on August 13


A bit more on Scaramucci's interview on This Week this morning: Scaramucci: Bannon's 'toleration' of white nationalism is 'inexcusable'

Not gonna link cuz fuck Breitbart, but Bannon & Co didn't take it well. They published a 2,000 word screed slamming him and defending Trump's response to the attacks.

The Scaramucci Show Continues: Anthony Blows Whatever Was Left of his Credibility With Trump’s Base
posted by chris24 at 2:18 PM on August 13 [10 favorites]


as opposed to steve bannon, who blows himself
posted by entropicamericana at 2:20 PM on August 13 [27 favorites]


How are they not Nazis?

Because they are not a member of the American Nazi Party? (Is that still a party? By God, yes! No link provided because I don't care enough to lean what is the real party VS a parody.)
posted by rough ashlar at 2:21 PM on August 13 [1 favorite]




The Scaramucci Show Continues: Anthony Blows . . .

Phrasing.
posted by FelliniBlank at 2:30 PM on August 13 [5 favorites]


Ben Jennings on Donald Trump and Charlottesville – cartoon

Well the WH is undergoing renovations right now.
posted by rhizome at 2:33 PM on August 13 [3 favorites]


Such circumstances nurture statesmanship – or disclose its absence. Even by his own tawdry standards, Donald Trump’s response to these disturbances has been breathtakingly feeble.

...

Compare and contrast the splendid outrage of Virginia’s governor, Terry McAuliffe, who did not hesitate to distinguish between right and wrong. “You are not patriots,” he said. “You came here today to hurt people and that is not patriotic … My message is clear: we are stronger than you. You will not succeed. There is no place for you here and there is no place for you in America.”

...

to the shame of the presidency, it is a southern governor who calls for decency, while the commander-in-chief prevaricates

posted by walrus at 2:35 PM on August 13 [7 favorites]


[A few comments removed, seriously cut it out with the I Randomly Hope They Get Deported thing.]
posted by cortex at 2:41 PM on August 13 [4 favorites]




Referring back to Frowner's comment:
So I feel like alternate tactics need to be developed that will destroy the image-making power of the nazis.

My immediate thought is that you can fuck up a protest with a small number of people if you have a brass band and enough people to defend it if they link arms and stay tight (we have left wing brass here, which brought it to mind). So, for instance, you mess up image-making if people are marching around....followed by tuba. Or followed by "The Worms Crawl In". There's risk to that, because a violent surge would overwhelm smaller numbers, but even there "nazis beat up bassoonist" is not as photogenic as "nazis slug it out with antifa".

I really think that noise and music are possible weapons when we don't have numbers, and I think it's important to remember that an otherwise low-purpose event like the march round an empty campus exists to create images.
I don't know if I fully cosign this tacting here, since the imagery may be a bit... well, off--the town of Bad Nenndorf in Neidersachsen, Germany, essentially made the Nazis "march" against themselves.
posted by anem0ne at 3:05 PM on August 13 [14 favorites]


As Indiana Jones once said, Nazis ... I hate those guys.
posted by Bringer Tom at 3:22 PM on August 13 [4 favorites]


There were some particularly alarming North Korea comments from McMaster this morning. He went on ABC and said that North Korea cannot be deterred:
STEPHANOPOULOS: But your predecessor Susan Rice wrote this week that the U.S. could tolerate nuclear weapons in North Korea the same way we tolerated nuclear weapons in the Soviet Union far more during the Cold War. Is she right?

MCMASTER: No, she’s not right. And I think the reason she’s not right is that the classical deterrence theory, how does that apply to a regime like the regime in North Korea? A regime that engages in unspeakable brutality against its own people? A regime that poses a continuous threat to the its neighbors in the region and now may pose a threat, direct threat, to the United States with weapons of mass destruction? A regime that imprisons and murders anyone who seems to oppose that regime, including members of his own family, using sarin nerve gase (sic) -- gas in a public airport?
[it was VX, not Sarin]

While you can argue about exactly how rationally North Korea acts and responds to pressures and events, where the hell do you go if the position of the national security advisor is that North Korea won't follow any normal theory of deterrence? The options, as far as I'm aware of them, are basically deterrence or an incredibly horrific, brutal war.

And as Jeffrey Lewis responds: "It is interesting that we only discuss whether the DPRK can be deterred when we are also discussing whether we can be."

The Times has more on that angle in Trump Threats Are Wild Card in Showdown With North Korea, and it's terrifying:
In this case, Mr. Trump has told people around him that he thinks Kim Jong-un, the unpredictable North Korean leader, will ultimately be prodded to cut a deal, and that the bluntness of his language is intended to create a crisis that drives him to negotiate before North Korea perfects a nuclear-tipped missile capable of striking the American mainland.
...
Even some of the president’s own advisers have quietly asked each other in recent days if Mr. Trump’s bellicosity toward North Korea is part of some thought-out strategy that they have not been told about or what they suspect is just more on-the-fly instinct. But some aides have found themselves surprised at other moments when Mr. Trump has done something unexpected and seemingly random, only to explain his thinking afterward in a way that indicated more calculation than they had thought.

Aides do know that after a lifetime in the real estate business, Mr. Trump starts a negotiation with an extreme position intended to ensure that the other side meets him not just in the middle but closer to his side. While he has little experience in translating that into international diplomacy, Mr. Trump has shown that he is not so wedded to any particular position on almost any issue, meaning he might be more likely to accept a compromise that would seem unthinkable judging by the stark language he uses at the start.
posted by zachlipton at 3:22 PM on August 13 [5 favorites]


A regime that engages in unspeakable brutality against its own people? A regime that poses a continuous threat to the its neighbors in the region and now may pose a threat, direct threat, to the United States with weapons of mass destruction? A regime that imprisons and murders anyone who seems to oppose that regime, including members of his own family, using sarin nerve gase (sic) -- gas in a public airport?

I believe each and every one of these charges against North Korea, during the 70's and 80's applied to the USSR.
posted by mikelieman at 3:26 PM on August 13 [15 favorites]


I believe each and every one of these charges against North Korea, during the 70's and 80's applied to the USSR.

yeah, but the face of soviet leadership then had the same skin tone and round eyes as the face of the american leadership, then and now.
posted by anem0ne at 3:31 PM on August 13 [5 favorites]


I believe each and every one of these charges against North Korea, during the 70's and 80's applied to the USSR.

yeah, but the face of soviet leadership then had the same skin tone and round eyes as the face of the american leadership, then and now.


Okay, then how about Maoist China?
posted by chris24 at 3:39 PM on August 13 [2 favorites]


We've now entered the Cernovich and Alex Jones claim that McMaster has a drinking problem phase of the smear campaign, along with the "is Bannon behind it?" counterattack.

Remember how Kelly was supposed to be making the place run smoother. Well oiled machine.
posted by zachlipton at 3:48 PM on August 13 [16 favorites]


Please get your terms straight, zachlipton. It's "fine-tuned machine." sheesh
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 3:52 PM on August 13 [5 favorites]


Okay, then how about Maoist China?

lil' buddy jared and his fam are busy trying to scam them. ain't nobody in the trump regime doing that to lil' kim.
posted by anem0ne at 3:56 PM on August 13 [1 favorite]


Please get your terms straight, zachlipton. It's "fine-tuned machine." sheesh

Well there's the problem. Pour too much oil in a fine tuned machine and you gum it up.
posted by Joey Michaels at 3:57 PM on August 13 [6 favorites]


I'm tired and I miss the president
posted by mumimor at 3:59 PM on August 13 [8 favorites]


Okay, then how about Maoist China?

lil' buddy jared and his fam are busy trying to scam them. ain't nobody in the trump regime doing that to lil' kim.


Meaning in the 60s and 70s, China was a nuclear state killing millions of its own people in the Cultural Revolution, expanding its influence militarily and trying to dominate the region, and basically fighting a proxy war with us in Vietnam and yet we were able to not go to actual, much less nuclear war with them.

This idea that a nuclear North Korea is uniquely evil or dangerous and thus undeterable is ahistorical and nothing but a pretext for a Wag the Dog war for Trump.
posted by chris24 at 4:08 PM on August 13 [38 favorites]


This idea that a nuclear North Korea is uniquely evil or dangerous and thus undeterable is ahistorical and nothing but a pretext for a Wag the Dog war for Trump.

I realize that there are lots of posters and lots of comments from nattering nabobs, but I would like to point out that I don't need to be lectured on North Korea.

I'm pointing out that they're being selected because Trump is a racist. His regime is racist. Pretty much everything about it is racist.

I'm underscoring the fact that THESE FUCKS DON'T LIKE ASIANS anymore than they like Blacks, Latinx, Arabs, or pretty much anyone not white. That's why they and all the dumb little racist fucks that make up their base are positively orgasmic over the idea of bombing a bunch of Asians.

I'm using less salty language, lest it be deleted again here for using more descriptive language. Descriptive language that I feel like I should be able to use given the fucking Asian band that just won a fucking Supreme Court case about. An Asian band with similar heritage to me.
posted by anem0ne at 4:26 PM on August 13 [12 favorites]


I realize that there are lots of posters and lots of comments from nattering nabobs, but I would like to point out that I don't need to be lectured on North Korea.

I wasn't trying to lecture you. I was explaining my comment that I thought you misinterpreted. mikelieman commented that McMaster's excuses about North Korea could just as easily be used against the USSR. You said that them being white made the difference. So I raised the example of China under Mao. You replied by referring to current Trump-China interactions. So I clarified what I meant by my comment.
posted by chris24 at 4:32 PM on August 13 [7 favorites]


Politico, Josh Dawsey, Trump aides predicting 'brutal' September
Inside President Donald Trump’s White House, no one seems to be looking forward to September.

Senior officials have described the coming month as "brutal," “bad” or “really tough” because of the confluence of complicated issues — but they also say it’s pivotal to getting the presidency back on course.

Aides hope to have a better blueprint for how the president wants to proceed on a series of thorny issues — the nation’s debt ceiling, the 2018 federal budget, tax reform, infrastructure spending and perhaps another stab at repealing Obamacare — after a series of meetings in New York this week.

Their goal is to partially temper Trump’s expectations, hammer out some compromises and get a competing band of aides on the same page. The month has taken on outsize importance among some top aides and outside advisers, who view it as key to getting the presidency on a better track.
...
Trump, who is impatient, wants it all done immediately, said people close to the president — and he has ratcheted up pressure on aides in recent weeks, even though he doesn't always engage with the substance of issues.

What makes the month harder is that many of the fights are in Congress, where the president and his team have little control.
The debt ceiling and the fact the government shuts down September 30th are live grenades, and the White House can't make up its mind what it even wants, let alone health care, rewriting the tax code, and who knows what else.
posted by zachlipton at 8:37 PM on August 13 [22 favorites]


but they also say it’s pivotal to getting the presidency back on course.

"back" on course?
posted by jason_steakums at 8:41 PM on August 13 [57 favorites]


Every frigging month is bad for them!
posted by jenfullmoon at 9:02 PM on August 13 [6 favorites]


The NY Daily News has a nice "welcome back to NYC" cover for Don.
posted by FelliniBlank at 9:10 PM on August 13 [6 favorites]


PR pro-tip: Try to avoid situations where your name and Hitler's are on a newspaper front page together.
posted by FelliniBlank at 9:13 PM on August 13 [18 favorites]


So, I've given this a lot of thought and I need to ask: Who and how do I petition to change the name and punchline of The Aristocrats into Making America Great Again?
posted by ckape at 9:23 PM on August 13 [24 favorites]


I'm pointing out that they're being selected because Trump is a racist. His regime is racist. Pretty much everything about it is racist.

Was the public relations (used to be called Propaganda until the word Propaganda developed its own emotional baggage and became in the west what "the others" used.) effort used to try an justify the "police action" for the Korean conflict motivated by racism?

Because the policy and language decisions used then to take what actions used to be called a war and "market" them are echoing today in the Trumpery on the topic. Propaganda principles of repetition over time is what I'm seeing. And Dear Leader LOVES 'public relations'. An old attage about how it is easier to con a con man comes to mind. And he's of an age where the past marketing efforts to him no longer have whatever filters make the older folks "gullible" and targets for propaganda.

As for the regime and its -ism's:

Dear Leader didn't form this out of a vacuum, he has been handed this thing. This thing and its underlings, mid level functionaries, and low level enforcers will all be there after he's gone plus whatever new layers he's able to lay down. Other than a wholesale shutdown and removal of everyone - what's an actual plan to be rid of the people in the thing we'll call a regime who are what we'll call racists? A purity test? If there is no plan to change the layers below a change at the top isn't gonna do much beyond rearrange the deck chairs on the Lusitania.


(and a thank you to the poster who linked to http://www.dancarlin.com/hardcore-history-59-the-destroyer-of-worlds/ the other day. Great content. )
posted by rough ashlar at 9:40 PM on August 13


The debt ceiling and the fact the government shuts down September 30th are live grenades

Humans are creatures of habit. The habit and what Dear Leader knows about unserviceable debt loads is you take the shutdown operation to bankruptcy.

Toss the grenade to the Bankruptcy Court and let the creditors absorb the shrapnel - it is what they signed up for after all.

Would'a made for an interesting topic for the debates this live grenade.
posted by rough ashlar at 9:45 PM on August 13 [1 favorite]


Quick point of order, in case anyone is confused: rough ashlar's comments about the Dear Leader, I believe, are referring exclusively to Donald Trump. That term doesn't actually apply to KIM Jong-un, who is actually referred to in many contexts as the "Great Successor", "Our Marshal", "Young General", and "Respected Comrade" at the moment.

---

Was the public relations ... effort used to try an justify the "police action" for the Korean conflict motivated by racism?

Eh, the US never actually declared war on North Korea; additionally, it was considered a "police action" because the war was actually fought under the banner of the UN--the USSR was boycotting the UN Security Council at the time over the PRC/ROC issue, which prevented them from vetoing the resolution.
posted by anem0ne at 9:55 PM on August 13 [2 favorites]


@DineshDSouza:
SET YOUR ALARM: I'll be on @foxandfriends at 7.15 am tomorrow to unravel the media's whole #Charlottesville narrative

@allahpundit: (HotAir) retweeted Dinesh D'Souza
Seriously, Kelly needs to hide Trump’s phone tonight

---

It may seem like snark but the seriously is actually serious. Dinesh has a new book on how Democrats are the true motivation and source behind Hitler's tactics and genocide. And since my Trumpette racist mom retweets most of his tweets, I have the joy of seeing his nutjob rants. So not surprising that a Republican fears Trump watching his favorite show tomorrow morn and tweeting something wildly offensive and historically incoherent.
posted by chris24 at 9:57 PM on August 13 [15 favorites]


So, can Congress get the Treasury to mint a trillion-dollar coin, or is that something that has to come from the Executive branch? Just asking now to get it out of the way before September.
posted by The Pluto Gangsta at 9:59 PM on August 13


that cernovich's name is still appearing in the news in any capacity is the clearest sign that the last two years is just my brain's attempt to build a narrative from random memories and sense input as i lay dying of a massive cerebral hemorrhage on the cold linoleum of the bathroom floor
posted by murphy slaw at 10:00 PM on August 13 [33 favorites]


Congress doesn't need to get the Treasury to mint a trillion-dollar coin. Congress can just raise the debit limit. The trillion-dollar coin thing is a (pretty stupid) idea for the Executive taking unilateral action if Congress doesn't.

And there's no bankruptcy court if the US defaults on the national debt. There's the IMF, I guess, but their response is going to be basically how the parable of the man by the river ends: god at the gates of St. Peter asking "what the hell are you doing here?"

Default is not an option.
posted by zachlipton at 10:06 PM on August 13 [4 favorites]


Eh, the US never actually declared war on North Korea; additionally, it was considered a "police action" because the war was actually fought under the banner of the UN--the USSR was boycotting the UN Security Council at the time over the PRC/ROC issue, which prevented them from vetoing the resolution.

And that history podcast posted by a different member of The Blue and cited above goes into it in with the lens of the use of nuclear weapons. But used the actual historical events VS this Trump-level summary that hits an actual truth and hides it in a repackaging tying to poorly market it better.

Truman - yea, sending troops, a blockade, and this stuff that sure would be called a war yup.
Reporter - not a war?
Truman - nope. Will of the UN or something, hand wave, hand wave
Reporter - spits it back out and says So its a police action?
Truman - Yea that's the ticket! Police Action. See now, no need for nukes! Cuz its not a war and the police don't have nukes! Say, wanna better looking hat?

(And yes, can't Trump *ALSO* be a Dear Leader?)
posted by rough ashlar at 10:14 PM on August 13


They wear and display Nazi symbols. They give the Nazi salute. They seem to adhere to at least some of the Nazi political platform. How are they not Nazis?

First you're trying to convince me that it's white people not Muslims that are the radical extremists and now you're saying that the alt right defenders of free speech are some kind of Socialists!!!! What kind of crazy left is right, black is white echo chamber is this place?

</trumpbase>
posted by flabdablet at 10:36 PM on August 13 [4 favorites]


John Oliver, Last Week Tonight: North Korea, featuring a surprise musical guest (which will be spoiled if you read the YouTube description or pay attention).

From the show before the main segment: "Nazis are a lot like cats. If they like you, it's probably because you're feeding them."
posted by zachlipton at 11:39 PM on August 13 [29 favorites]




[One deleted. Let's not continue on with the "speaking in the voice of bigoted Trump supporter" commentary, which invariably wanders into offensive stuff that wouldn't be okay to post otherwise. I totally get that it's meant to be a sort of satire, but the "ironic racism (etc.)" thing is fraught, and we've been asking folks not to do that for a while.]
posted by taz at 2:40 AM on August 14 [16 favorites]


Fuck linking to the Daily Caller, but here's a chunk of the article. I love when awful people go full End-of-Reservoir-Dogs.

Daily Caller: EXCLUSIVE: Former Trump Adviser Says He Will ‘Blow’ McMaster, Drudge ‘The F**k Out’ If Bannon Is Ousted
Sam Nunberg, a former political adviser to Donald Trump, warned Sunday of dire consequences for National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster and Matt Drudge if White House chief strategist Steve Bannon is pushed out of the West Wing.

“If Steve is fired by the White House and a bunch of generals take over the White House there will be hell to pay,” Nunberg, a longtime Trump aide who left the presidential campaign in August 2015, told The Daily Caller in an exclusive interview. His comments came after an Axios report that claimed Bannon’s job is in jeopardy due to damaging leaks against McMaster and anger over a recent book touting Bannon’s role on the Trump presidential campaign.

Nunberg told TheDC that he was “very perturbed” by the Axios story and tied in Bannon’s reported downfall to the Drudge Report, which continues to link to stories that are negative to the White House chief strategist.

“Matt should go back into his hobble hole in Miami and listen to techno,” the former Trump campaign adviser said. “Matt should understand that people like me can blow him the fook up. F-o-o-k, Conor McGregor. Blow him the fook up [sic].” (Nunberg was referencing Irish MMA fighter Conor McGregor, who pronounces “fuck” as “fook.”)

Drudge has not made it known why he doesn’t favor Bannon on his site. However, he has previously suspected Bannon of leaking in to an email reviewed by TheDC, and he is known to link to articles that paint reported Bannon foe Jared Kushner in a positive light.

“Matt should understand there will be serious fucking consequences if he continues this jihad against Steve Bannon,” Nunberg told TheDC. “I was somebody with [Trump] for four and half fucking years who understood and came up with a formula to win…Matt Drudge is somebody who wants web traffic.”

He added, “I’ll get conservative radio to talk about how Matt Drudge pushed out Steve Bannon so McMaster can control the White House.”
posted by chris24 at 4:42 AM on August 14 [9 favorites]


Dinesh has a new book on how Democrats are the true motivation and source behind Hitler's tactics and genocide.
Everyone has known for decades (at least, I hope they do, I learned this in school) that Hitler and his enablers were greatly inspired by the American eugenics movement that swept through progressive, sincerely leftist/socialist intellectuals in the early part of the century. If that's Dinesh's big fat reveal, I'll forgive anyone who yawns.
posted by xyzzy at 5:04 AM on August 14 [12 favorites]


If that's Dinesh's big fat reveal, I'll forgive anyone who yawns.

It's that and that Democrats are the real fascists. From the overview of The Big Lie:
What is "the big lie" of the Democratic Party? That conservatives—and President Donald Trump in particular—are fascists. Nazis, even. In a typical comment, MSNBC host Rachel Maddow says the Trump era is reminiscent of "what it was like when Hitler first became chancellor."

But in fact, this audacious lie is a complete inversion of the truth. Yes, there is a fascist threat in America—but that threat is from the Left and the Democratic Party. The Democratic left has an ideology virtually identical with fascism and routinely borrows tactics of intimidation and political terror from the Nazi Brownshirts.

To cover up their insidious fascist agenda, Democrats loudly accuse President Trump and other Republicans of being Nazis—an obvious lie, considering the GOP has been fighting the Democrats over slavery, genocide, racism and fascism from the beginning.

Now, finally, Dinesh D'Souza explodes the Left's big lie. He expertly exonerates President Trump and his supporters, then uncovers the Democratic Left's long, cozy relationship with Nazism: how the racist and genocidal acts of early Democrats inspired Adolf Hitler's campaign of death; how fascist philosophers influenced the great 20th century lions of the American Left; and how today's anti-free speech, anti-capitalist, anti-religious liberty, pro-violence Democratic Party is a frightening simulacrum of the Nazi Party.
So basically, I'm not the puppet, you're the puppet.
posted by chris24 at 5:13 AM on August 14 [12 favorites]


He added, “I’ll get conservative radio to talk about how Matt Drudge pushed out Steve Bannon so McMaster can control the White House.”

Popcorn, please...
posted by Mental Wimp at 5:16 AM on August 14 [2 favorites]


Former Trump Adviser Says He Will ‘Blow’ McMaster

sweet jesus, what is it with these people
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 5:18 AM on August 14 [32 favorites]


and how today's anti-free speech, anti-capitalist, anti-religious liberty, pro-violence Democratic Party is a frightening simulacrum of the Nazi Party.

TRANSLATION - "why settle for a simulacrum of the nazi party when you can have the REAL THING?"
posted by pyramid termite at 5:18 AM on August 14 [3 favorites]


I would appreciate it if everyone here gave Dinesh the respect he deserves and call him by his correct title of 'convicted felon Dinseh D'Souza'
posted by PenDevil at 5:19 AM on August 14 [61 favorites]


Let's mock convicted felon Dinesh D'Souza a bit. Yesterday he tweeted a pic of what looks at first glance like huge stacks of his new book for sale.

@DineshDSouza
This argument is more relevant than ever as the media left tries to use #Charlottesville to promote its Big Lies about fascism & Nazism [PIC]

Except it was obvious that he had just gone there and put a bunch of his books on top of already existing stacks of other books.

@dandrezner Retweeted Dinesh D'Souza
Let me get this straight: you went to a Costco and put your book on top of stacks of other books so it would look more popular?

And then later:

@dandrezner Retweeted Daniel Drezner
I'm not gonna lie: I'm pretty pleased that this tweet generated more traffic than @DineshDSouza's original tweet.

6 times more likes and retweets.
posted by chris24 at 5:28 AM on August 14 [35 favorites]


You guys inspired me to look up Dinesh D'Souza, since I know he is someone my mom likes and I wasn't sure how hebcibnected to the alt right... I found this amazing Vanity Fair profile.

He dated Ann Coulter AND Laura Ingrahm?

He cheated on his wife after accepting a job at a Christian college?

He got himself a worse sentence for that felony campaign finance law violation by publicly insisting during sentencing he was being persecuted for his political opinions... while his lawyer was trying to argue that he was remorseful of his crimes?

Oh, and he wrote this stuff in a book...
Education, he pushed his argument further, in 1995, with The End of Racism. His being brown himself, he believed, put him in a privileged position to comment on race and would inoculate him against criticism. Among his assertions: slavery in this country was not actually based on race. That if we’re going to discuss America owing blacks reparations for slavery, then what do blacks owe America for the abolition of slavery? He riffed on “widely different personalities” developed during slavery—“the playful Sambo, the sullen ‘field nigger,’ the dependable Mammy, the sly and inscrutable trickster”—that, he claimed, were “still recognizable.” It was another best-seller, but this time the press denounced it as insensitive. Sullivan, who had planned to run an excerpt in The New Republic, declined to publish it. Eventually, recalls Sullivan, “in the office, he was called by his nickname, ‘Distort Denewsa.’ ” Glenn Loury and Bob Woodson, two African-American colleagues at A.E.I., resigned in protest. As Loury wrote, “It violated the canons of civility and commonality.”
This is one of the leading intellectual lights of the conservative movement, I'm told.
posted by OnceUponATime at 5:36 AM on August 14 [54 favorites]


Fun story about convicted felon Dinseh D'Souza, my wife works our local last remaining vestage of a national bookseller chain that rhymes with Darns & Woble. They have to stock all the new releases, but some rightwing garbage humans get special treatment in the 10th most liberal county in America, including convicted felon Dinseh D'Souza. They put out exactly one copy of his screeds and shitty Hilary bashing movies, and when that one sells, it's not restocked. If someone asks to buy it, and they have some right wing regulars that will religiously buy every new release on the wingnut welfare circuit, they tell them, "oh, it must be out, let me check in the back for you" and return with exactly one copy to sell to that sad fuck that specifically sought it out and asked to buy a garbage book by convicted felon Dinseh D'Souza in person.
posted by T.D. Strange at 5:47 AM on August 14 [56 favorites]


Glenn Loury and Bob Woodson, two African-American colleagues at A.E.I., resigned in protest. As Loury wrote, “It violated the canons of civility and commonality.”

Good lord! When Glenn Loury finds your racist swill offensive you must really have crossed the line.
posted by rdr at 5:51 AM on August 14 [1 favorite]


This argument is more relevant than ever as the media left tries to use #Charlottesville to promote its Big Lies about fascism & Nazism


Let me get this straight: you went to a Costco and put your book on top of stacks of other books so it would look more popular?

Even if he did not do that, a pic of a big stack of your books in a discount retailer, with remaindered price stickers on them? #authorbragfail
posted by thelonius at 5:59 AM on August 14 [15 favorites]


Is that the authorial equivalent of direct to DVD?
posted by C'est la D.C. at 6:15 AM on August 14 [2 favorites]


When Jeff fucking Sessions thinks you're being too racist...

@NorahODonnell:
Does the President today need to specifically condemn neo-Nazis and white supremacists?
AG Sessions: "Absolutely." on @CBSThisMorning

VIDEO
posted by chris24 at 6:31 AM on August 14 [14 favorites]


He cheated on his wife after accepting a job at a Christian college?

He got himself a worse sentence for that felony campaign finance law violation by publicly insisting during sentencing he was being persecuted for his political opinions... while his lawyer was trying to argue that he was remorseful of his crimes?


Republicans: Party of white supremacists, criminals, and libertines. "The only moral divorce is MY divorce!*" Family values, my pinko commie behind.

White evangelicals as a bloc (I'm not talking about individual Christians) have no actual values beyond white supremacy and the "prosperity gospel" (which the historical Jesus denounced).

*note: I don't think divorce is wrong or immoral! I just hate "family values" hypocrisy.
posted by Rosie M. Banks at 6:34 AM on August 14 [14 favorites]


Putting all your books on top of the other books makes it look like no one wants them, not like they're more popular.
posted by yoga at 6:36 AM on August 14 [14 favorites]


Dirty Dean Heller is still trying to repeal the ACA. Andy Slavitt:
    The last vote was aiming 2 get a bill into Conference where Graham-Cassidy-Heller (GCH) were hoping their bill would come out final bill. This is a good paper which shows that GCH would have virtually identical impact to all repeal bills. But....GCH has 1 major Trumpcare difference: a welfare program for states that didn't expand Medicaid (Rs only) & who meet set up criteria. The punchline of Graham-Cassidy-Heller is not "block grants"-- it's a redistribution scheme of welfare payments to red states. Here's how: GCH takes billions in Medicaid $ & "redistributes" it w a formula to specific states. Financed by massive blue state cuts. GCH aims to get 25 governors to endorse. How? Payment sweeteners. Why 25 states? = 50 Senators. To the winner go the spoils.. Because only "winners" would vote 4 it, ignores 60 vote plea from McCain 2 save Senate. It's quite cynical. It's divisive. It may work. GCH caps Medicaid, deeply cuts care, ends expansion, leads 2 higher costs 4 low income. But gives a payday* 2 states that didn't expand. Payday is short term. Cuts are so deep that in [longer] term all states lose out. Graham, Cassidy, Heller is the most significant threat 2 repeal ACA. Trump is bullying the Senate to take it up. 25 gov plan is the way👇
tl;dr: Dean Heller, who claims he cares about Medicaid but then voted to end Medicaid, now wants to steal current Medicaid money from Blue states and give it to Red states; while in the long term still ending Medicaid for everyone.
posted by T.D. Strange at 6:47 AM on August 14 [28 favorites]


Does anyone else use the Quartz app? I just found out it has a Trump Snooze feature, which will reduce Trump related news items to only honest-to-Pete emergencies (or so they say). I'm giving it a try, be nice to reduce the non-essential Trump background radiation. :)
posted by hilaryjade at 6:50 AM on August 14 [6 favorites]


How is this app defining emergencies?
posted by jenfullmoon at 6:51 AM on August 14 [4 favorites]


One of my siblings who lives in the belt buckle of the bible belt met us at a midway point for lunch over the weekend. All the voting age people in her family went Trump.

Hubby says, yeah my newest idea is to restart the rail line that runs from Charleston to the NC mountains & have all the little towns coordinate festivals & people could just take the train up to go whitewater rafting & hiking for the day - I'm SURE there's Federal money for parks like that! He is writing to the mayors of all said little towns on the rail route.

I told my sane sibling (I have 3 and 1 is sane. the other 2 are not) about the exchange & that I wanted to say, not anymore since YOUR idiot president has defunded the parks, moron. Sane sibling said, you should've said that!

Later mrs. yoga and I said, that would've been a waste of breath. Because it would've devolved into political debating, which then would take a turn for religion, as it always does, when they bump up against reality logic.
posted by yoga at 6:56 AM on August 14 [8 favorites]


not anymore since YOUR idiot president has defunded the parks, moron

Also: trains = liberals love trains = no go
posted by thelonius at 7:00 AM on August 14 [9 favorites]


>@NorahODonnell:
Does the President today need to specifically condemn neo-Nazis and white supremacists?
AG Sessions: "Absolutely." on @CBSThisMorning


Not nearly as clear as that one word summary suggests. Sessions says Trump was clear yesterday and will/might repeat that today.
posted by stonepharisee at 7:03 AM on August 14 [5 favorites]


Merck CEO Kenneth Frazier resigned from the President's Manufacturing Council, saying, "America's leaders must honor our fundamental values by clearly rejecting expressions of hatred, bigotry and group supremacy."

Presidential response: attacks Frazier on Twitter, saying Frazier's resignation will give him "more time to LOWER RIPOFF DRUG PRICES!"
posted by yes I said yes I will Yes at 7:22 AM on August 14 [13 favorites]


Trump HHS Severs Key Partnerships For Obamacare Outreach
Both representatives of the former partner groups and former HHS officials say the relationships with gig economy companies, youth organizations, churches, women’s groups, and African American and Latino civil rights non-profits were critical to keeping Obamacare’s markets functioning, and their termination is a clear example of sabotage.

They're going to sabotage the ACA in every way possible.
posted by T.D. Strange at 7:36 AM on August 14 [10 favorites]


How is this app defining emergencies?

On a case by case basis.
Seward said that Quartz had heard from many readers — and, of course, its own team had experienced — that Trump news can feel “relentless and a little draining.” Quartz sends out about six notifications through its app on the average day. Non-Trump-related political news can’t be snoozed — and, in addition, Quartz editors retain the discretion to send through really important Trump-related news if warranted even if the snooze is on. When I asked for examples of what might come through — I was curious, in particular, about the Comey “nut job” revelations of last week — Seward said it would really be handled case by case and that, when testing the snooze feature earlier this year, the team chose, for example, to send through Trump’s statement about the bombing of Syria.

“There are certainly news stories that feel like they rise to a clear bar of importance, regardless of being about Trump,” he said.

posted by zarq at 7:41 AM on August 14 [2 favorites]


Also: trains = liberals love trains = no go

This is too real. Conservatives fucking hate trains for reasons that are not at all clear to me. Some of it, like the MARTA hatred in suburban Atlanta, is racism. But the rest of it is just a mystery. They shut down the Florida high speed rail project (this makes me mad especially because it would've been done by now if Jeb hadn't killed it) because "taxes!!!" (i.e., fuck liberals), but they have no compunction about spending billions on constant road building. There's nothing conservative or liberal about trains, they're just a mode of transpo but damn do conservatives hate trains. It makes no sense to me except that their ideology gets its momentum from the lobbies for resource extraction industries.
posted by dis_integration at 7:42 AM on August 14 [59 favorites]


Jesus, I just read about Trump doubling down and blaming someone for stepping down from a council because of his stance on Charlottesville, but not blaming the Nazis.

If you have dual citizenship, get the fuck out. Don't think about it, do it.
posted by Yowser at 7:44 AM on August 14 [10 favorites]


Ken Frazier is black, apropo of nothing.

Protect yourself.
posted by Yowser at 7:47 AM on August 14 [1 favorite]


Trains are "liberal" because they mean people might buy fewer enormous cars meant only for one household or driver.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:51 AM on August 14 [9 favorites]


Also it's real hard to drive a train into a crowd of people you hate
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 7:52 AM on August 14 [43 favorites]


The funny thing about trains as a political flashpoint is that (a) I thought trains were a big libertarian thing, for reasons related somehow to Ayn Rand's love of the damn things (of course, they would never support a public rails project, mind), and (b) trains seem like they totally should be attractive to the same sort of retrogressive conservative masculinity that goes into raptures about coal mines and hammertruck factories; although there too I guess passenger trains and light rail are kind of less manly.
posted by jackbishop at 8:00 AM on August 14 [6 favorites]


Conservatives fucking hate trains for reasons that are not at all clear to me.

It's taxes.

In my tender youth, there was a guy in my home town who was a member of the John Birch Society who would show up at each and every town meeting, and regardless of the issue being debated, he would publically declare that he was opposed to it because whatever it was would be increasing government involvement in private enterprise, and that this was not what Thomas Jefferson intended when he founded this great nation. (Often in those exact words.)

In the late 80s/early 90s, Amtrak pointed out to the town that its "Montrealer" train went right through the town, and asked if we wanted a stop there. There was a rudimentary platform already there and everything. And at the town meeting we had to discuss this - sure enough, there was that guy arguing that Amtrak was a government inroad into private enterprise, which would lead to increased taxes and therefore we should say "no" because this was not as Thomas Jefferson intended things when he wrote the Constitution, by God! (The town ignored him and said "yes," but the station only lasted for 3 years because the only trains came through at midnight and at 3 am.)

It's taxes.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:02 AM on August 14 [14 favorites]


Also, railways are labour intensive natural monopolies, which tend to be breeding grounds for unionism. Thatcher hated them for the same reason.
posted by acb at 8:07 AM on August 14 [29 favorites]


Also it turns out that Nazis are actually rubbish at making trains run on time.
posted by Artw at 8:10 AM on August 14 [11 favorites]


Trains are energy efficient. Conservatives hate that. When some R rags on me about my Prius, I ask "When did waste become a conservative value?" That shuts them up.
posted by BentFranklin at 8:14 AM on August 14 [63 favorites]


There's a bunch of people who absolutely fetishize automobiles as totems of freedom and independence and strength and agency. And that's not entirely baseless- an old friend of mine learned to drive at 32 once she finally got her epilepsy meds sorted, and she would rhapsodize about being able to go places outside her home other than on foot or in buses. The problem with the car fetishists is that for a lot of them it goes beyond "cars let me do things I couldn't otherwise do" and into "my car is an extension of my mastery over the world".

IDK, I don't have the time or the organization to be as clear about my thoughts on this as I'd like.
posted by Pope Guilty at 8:14 AM on August 14 [13 favorites]


b) trains seem like they totally should be attractive to the same sort of retrogressive conservative masculinity that goes into raptures about coal mines and hammertruck factories; although there too I guess passenger trains and light rail are kind of less manly.

The mentality behind this treats technology and infrastructure as status markers rather than for their underlying purpose.

To these people, since infrastructure is a status marker for the nation, not for themselves, it's unimportant, and so is the actual purpose of our roads and trains (carrying people from A to B).

This is also why they will happily pay for an over-blinged military that can't actually win wars. The F-35 and our ill-designed navy are this era's equivalent of Queen Elizabeth's Pocket Pistol (a cannon you can see in the cafeteria at Dover Castle. The thing packed an enormous punch but was too unwieldy to use in combat, so it was always a prestige weaon.)
posted by ocschwar at 8:19 AM on August 14 [4 favorites]


The train thing was basically an excuse for Blackshirts to attack the civil service, to intimidate them from political activity, iirc

where "attack" = beat up and force to drink castor oil, not say mean things about
posted by thelonius at 8:20 AM on August 14


(I mean the Fascist "make the trains run on time" thing)
posted by thelonius at 8:22 AM on August 14


There are many, many reasons why trains are better than cars. They're far safer. Especially for cyclists and pedestrians. They're usually much faster, especially if you're traveling long distances. They use less energy and cause way less pollution. But trains cost the government a lot more than cars. Culturally, conservatives value individuality, yes. But the primary argument conservatives raise against trains is basic economics and neither environmental nor cultural.

Randal O'Toole is a Cato Institute fellow and self described "rail nut" who is usually quoted when conservatives want to attack federal train subsidies. His essays like to make comparisons between the federal cost per passenger spent on highways, compared to the cost per passengers on trains. (Amtrak is heavily subsidized by the government.)

This argument doesn't take into account any of the factors I mentioned above, nor the fact that passengers help subsidize their own travel costs by buying tickets. Often to a greater extent than tolls and taxes pay for roads. But the toll/ticket differences don't offset the overall cost differences.
posted by zarq at 8:23 AM on August 14 [9 favorites]


Conservatives fucking hate trains for reasons that are not at all clear to me.

Trains were terrific when they created Robber Barons. Now, not so much.
posted by Mental Wimp at 8:31 AM on August 14 [2 favorites]


They're usually much faster

Train service from Pittsburgh to Washington DC--a four-hour drive--takes 8 hours. The train to Philly is slightly better, at 1.5x the time it takes to drive it. (And both services leave at ass-o'clock in the morning.) It makes me weep because I LOVE TRAINS. They've priced out track improvements to make the Philadelphia route less slow but the best they can do is an improvement of like 20 minutes at the price of actual billions of dollars.

Living in the mountains sure is pretty, but sucks for vehicles that can only handle a 3% grade.
posted by soren_lorensen at 8:31 AM on August 14 [10 favorites]


trains cost the government a lot more than car

no they don't, they just look like it when you ignore oil subsidies, manufacturer bailouts, highway construction and maintenance, etc (not to mention other hidden costs like sprawl, pollution, obesity, heart disease)
posted by entropicamericana at 8:34 AM on August 14 [41 favorites]


Yeah, cars are overall cheaper and have far more independence. Check out the awesome Maine Narrow Gauge Train Museum in Portland; according to them, the narrow gauge allowed them to go more places like the mountains, where people could vacation and escape the heat; * but, as soon as the car was invented, boom, they were done.

* accidentally typed hate. Hmmm.
posted by Melismata at 8:36 AM on August 14 [2 favorites]




into "my car is an extension of my mastery over the world".

Is that what the kids are calling it these days?
posted by spitbull at 8:41 AM on August 14 [8 favorites]


Josh Marshall: Don't Be a Chump
The problem with the continued begging, ‘why won’t he denounce, why won’t he denounce’ is that at some point, maybe later today, President Trump will go before a podium and read off through gritted teeth a pro-forma denunciation of Nazis and it will seem to a lot of people like it means something when it doesn’t. He’s already made crystal clear where he stands here. The question is how we individually and as a country are going to deal with that fact, not how many more mulligans we’re going to give him. His neo-nazi supporters are truly over the moon that he’s steadfastly refusing to criticize them, even in the face of withering criticism and derision. They get the message. They’re ecstatic. Everyone who doesn’t see this, see that it is intentional, is getting played for chumps.
posted by tonycpsu at 8:49 AM on August 14 [66 favorites]


don't buy into the myth
posted by entropicamericana at 8:39 AM on August 14 [+] [!]


That synopsis points out a hidden, but large cost to cars: traffic control. Think of the infrastructure costs and labor that goes into all that. On top, think of the cost of additional police to monitor traffic laws and (ugh!) parking regulations. You'd think the diversion of policing resources into speed traps and meter monitors would disgust the conservatives who rail about taxes and crime, but to them ideology is much more important than philosophy these days.
posted by Mental Wimp at 8:49 AM on August 14 [5 favorites]


Railing about rails is a derail.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 8:51 AM on August 14 [26 favorites]


Well, we haven't been well-trained.
posted by oneswellfoop at 8:53 AM on August 14 [18 favorites]


This argument doesn't take into account any of the factors I mentioned above, nor the fact that passengers help subsidize their own travel costs by buying tickets. Often to a greater extent than tolls and taxes pay for roads. But the toll/ticket differences don't offset the overall cost differences.

The great economic drivers of America -- the large cities -- work because of trains. A giant number of people need to be spit into the downtown skyscrapers of New York, Boston, San Francisco, Chicago, and leave for the suburbs every evening. This happens because of trains. The streets literally cannot handle the situation if everyone drives their own car.
posted by Hypatia at 8:54 AM on August 14 [12 favorites]


Getting side-tracked again.
posted by Melismata at 8:54 AM on August 14 [20 favorites]


This is too real. Conservatives fucking hate trains for reasons that are not at all clear to me

Trains are socialism in vehicle form. They assume a common direction and destination for everyone in it, and don't really allow for anyone to get there any faster than anyone else, regardless of how much richer or more deserving they are. Plus, you dont't even decide when they go! And they keep running even if you personally aren't using them. The worst sort of big-government nanny statism.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 8:55 AM on August 14 [44 favorites]


oil subsidies

Digging into the exact cost differences on this would probably be difficult. Most rail systems whose locomotives run on electricity (and not diesel) either draw power from existing power utilities or have generators that supply their needs. However, that electricity is often created with natural gas (also wind turbines and in some increasingly rare cases, crude oil.) The natural gas used is typically methane. But it's literally taken decades for electric companies to switch away from petroleum/crude-oil to produce power.

Discussing this aspect of rail transport and infrastructure can get very complicated, very quickly. There are large upfront costs to establishing an electrified infrastructure. Once it's up and running, oil-related costs are probably much lower. Transporting liquefied natural gas requires either a pipeline coupled with storage tanks or use of the petroleum infrastructure (trucks as well as storage tanks.)

We can't simply say that oil subsidies don't affect trains. We can assume it's a lot less of an impact, but it's still there.

Meanwhile, because nothing in life is as simple as it ought to be, natural gas power plants emit a lot more methane than one might expect, and methane is a greenhouse gas.
posted by zarq at 8:58 AM on August 14 [1 favorite]


I know we are all just letting off steam, but you guys, we really gotta choo-choo-choose our battles here.
posted by ian1977 at 9:01 AM on August 14 [22 favorites]


Richard W. Painter @RWPUSA
Jealous of Kellyanne for 15 years and eager for attention. As Delta Airlines would say, the GOP has you in a middle seat in Row 28.

Ann Coulter @AnnCoulter
Ann Coulter demands University of Minnesota fire Richard Painter over Charlottesville.
posted by Room 641-A at 9:03 AM on August 14 [5 favorites]


Conservatives fucking hate trains for reasons that are not at all clear to me.

George Will made the conservative case quite clear:
"The real reason for progressives’ passion for trains is their goal of diminishing Americans’ individualism in order to make them more amenable to collectivism. To progressives, the best thing about railroads is that people riding them are not in automobiles, which are subversive of the deference on which progressivism depends. Automobiles go hither and yon, wherever and whenever the driver desires, without timetables. Automobiles encourage people to think they—unsupervised, untutored, and unscripted—are masters of their fates. The automobile encourages people in delusions of adequacy, which make them resistant to government by experts who know what choices people should make."

So, the simple answer to your question of why conservatives hate trains: Trains are socialism.
posted by JackFlash at 9:07 AM on August 14 [27 favorites]


Man, they must hate airplanes, then.
posted by soren_lorensen at 9:09 AM on August 14 [10 favorites]


Trains are socialism in vehicle form.

🎶 They're two, they're four, they're six, they're eight!
Shunting trucks and hauling freight,
Red, not green nor brown nor blue:
They are the socialist menace (who knew???)

All with the same role to play
At Tidmouth Sheds or far away:
Capitalist swine will flee, afraid
Of Thomas and his comrades!
posted by the quidnunc kid at 9:11 AM on August 14 [28 favorites]


Nah, airplanes had pretty women on them they could (get fired for not wearing makeup and) gawk at.
posted by Melismata at 9:12 AM on August 14 [4 favorites]


"The real reason for progressives’ passion for trains is their goal of diminishing Americans’ individualism in order to make them more amenable to collectivism. To progressives, the best thing about railroads is that people riding them are not in automobiles, which are subversive of the deference on which progressivism depends.

Put another way: trains remind you you live in a society, and not in a transportable bubble tailored to your own preferences and needs.
posted by Rykey at 9:13 AM on August 14 [49 favorites]


Is that what the kids are calling it these days?

You're completely right about what I'm getting at but my thoughts aren't sufficiently in order to overtly go there.
posted by Pope Guilty at 9:13 AM on August 14


The right wing's transportation preferences definitely reveal an authoritarian motive:

1. They prefer people need a license from their government just to leave their homes and fetch milk.

2. They prefer that long distance travel require the use of seat belts. (I like to use kinkier innuendo when pointing this part out.)
posted by ocschwar at 9:19 AM on August 14 [5 favorites]


>@NorahODonnell:
Does the President today need to specifically condemn neo-Nazis and white supremacists?
AG Sessions: "Absolutely." on @CBSThisMorning

Not nearly as clear as that one word summary suggests. Sessions says Trump was clear yesterday and will/might repeat that today.


Everyday he should be asked "Are you a white supremacist today?"
posted by srboisvert at 9:19 AM on August 14 [3 favorites]


(BTW that Will quote sounds so much like my dad lol. IS YOUR WASHROOM BREEDING COLLECTIVISTS?)
posted by soren_lorensen at 9:24 AM on August 14 [5 favorites]


The real reason for progressives’ passion for trains is their goal of diminishing Americans’ individualism in order to make them more amenable to collectivism.
...
The right wing's transportation preferences definitely reveal an authoritarian motive:


Both of these ideas are utterly bizarre.
posted by Jpfed at 9:32 AM on August 14 [3 favorites]


Crimony, that George Will quote is only from 2011.
posted by rhizome at 9:32 AM on August 14


eager for attention; I think eager is even more of a creepy word than moist.
posted by Oyéah at 9:35 AM on August 14


George Will made the conservative case quite clear:

Hmmm, now I know a fraction of the pain of a 2017 Onion writer.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 9:36 AM on August 14 [11 favorites]


Oh yeah, and cars play into the class system. Whereas trains don't play into the most expensive mode to transport my golden ass, system.
posted by Oyéah at 9:38 AM on August 14 [2 favorites]


The problem with the car fetishists is that for a lot of them it goes beyond "cars let me do things I couldn't otherwise do" and into "my car is an extension of my mastery over the world".

With the caveat that I live in a city on a tropical island and I recognize many human beings have winter or constant rain or live places where they're miles from anywhere...

In the last five years, I've started walking everywhere I can. This was initially primarily for health reasons but has turned into a freedom issue. I don't need to sit in traffic or look for parking or pay for gas. I can opt to ride the bus or use the new bike share. I've gotten to know my town more closely and intimately than I've ever known it before. I feel more personally invested in my community and know more about what's going on than my divining friends.

I've felt the same way taking trains on the mainland. On a train, you're part of humanity and seeing this at eye level. You don't need to worry about keeping your eye on the road so you can see the farms and forests and teeming masses. Planes put you above everyone and cars don't allow you to pay attention to the scenery if you're the driver.

Cars have some advantages (like when you want to bring home 10 months worth of toilet paper from the store) but making it easier to get from place to place without one opens up the world for millions of people. I think this is the real reason the right hates trains - it allows every single group of "those" people to potentially get to their geography more easily. Purchasing a car and paying for gas is an economic barrier to free travel. Cars are freedom for those that can afford them and cash pits for people who need them but can't afford them.

Anyhow, cheap travel is an equaliser that often makes you bond with your fellow humans and we can't have that. Bikes, trains and pedestrian safety are all things they hate. Socialism indeed.
posted by Joey Michaels at 9:43 AM on August 14 [44 favorites]


Trump is speaking again on Charlottesville. Racism solved!

[defeated emoji]
posted by prefpara at 9:44 AM on August 14 [1 favorite]


I'm trying to gauge how long this train of thought is going to be.
posted by bardophile at 9:49 AM on August 14 [5 favorites]


Whereas trains don't play into the most expensive mode to transport my golden ass

I might be misreading this, but AMTRAK trains are expensive. One of my BFFs is afraid to fly and the train is always more expensive than flying.
posted by Room 641-A at 9:49 AM on August 14 [1 favorite]






I usually can't watch Trump but I did watch a clip of him this morning saying those words that he really didn't want to say. The inside must be really bad considering that he was finally convinced he had too. You could tell he was forced and it was oddly satisfying. Guess I'm at a point of taking what little I can get.
posted by Jalliah at 10:07 AM on August 14




After days of pressure, U.S. President admits racism is bad.
posted by AndrewInDC at 10:07 AM on August 14 [111 favorites]


but AMTRAK trains are expensive

You will have to be more specific on routes. Round trip AMTRAK fare NYC to DC is $100. Air fare is $150.

AMTRAK carries you from city center to city center. For air, add cost and time of travel to and from outlying airports.
posted by JackFlash at 10:08 AM on August 14 [3 favorites]


You could tell he was forced and it was oddly satisfying. Guess I'm at a point of taking what little I can get.

Yep. He's already revealed/confirmed what and who he is. This doesn't change that. What it does is demonstrate our ability to still enforce norms, even against the highest position in the land.
posted by chris24 at 10:15 AM on August 14 [27 favorites]


For what it's worth, Trump is at his lowest approval rating ever in Gallup's daily poll today. Down to 34%. C'mon, we can get to 27% surely! Or lower, even!
posted by yasaman at 10:15 AM on August 14 [21 favorites]


For what it's worth, Trump is at his lowest approval rating ever in Gallup's daily poll today. Down to 34%.

And this is with only one of the days in the 3 day rolling average being post-NaziGate.
posted by chris24 at 10:18 AM on August 14 [4 favorites]


Turns out we've lowered the bar so low that the President of the United States saying racism is evil is literally worthy of a breaking news alert.
posted by zachlipton at 10:18 AM on August 14 [64 favorites]


Yep. He's already revealed/confirmed what and who he is. This doesn't change that. What it does is demonstrate our ability to still enforce norms, even against the highest position in the land.

Yeah. If the so-called "alt-right" was really winning, Trump wouldn't have to say another word.

Of course, his grudging capitulation also shows how badly the so-called "liberal media" has failed to enforce so many other norms with him.
posted by Gelatin at 10:19 AM on August 14 [4 favorites]


About Those Pictures
while it is largely unfair to impute guilt by association to particular GOP officeholders who stood for a few moments for a photo, it is quite fair to see these as examples that neo-nazi and white supremacist activists commonly organize within and are welcomed within the GOP.
posted by T.D. Strange at 10:22 AM on August 14 [25 favorites]


Turns out we've lowered the bar so low that the President of the United States saying racism is evil is literally worthy of a breaking news alert.

Was there a reverse angle camera to show whether his fingers were crossed?
posted by JackFlash at 10:22 AM on August 14 [5 favorites]


I more or less wrote this on Twitter just now but - I don't care if he really believes what he just said or read from his script. I care that the online Nazis hate what he just said and won't be quite so emboldened (some damage has already been done from the non-response). I care that the average Joe Republican who wasn't really paying attention and didn't hear a condemnation, and may have assumed that the 'both sides' were to blame narrative was true, and may have assumed that these weren't really nazis and that's just the leftist media being hyperbolic, can now hear their President condemn the white nationalists and racists who were to blame. I care that the pressure on the administration is having an effect and I care that we keep it up.
posted by TwoWordReview at 10:25 AM on August 14 [21 favorites]


I care about the fact that he may have just cut five to ten percent off his approval ratings by making Nazis and white supremacists mad at him. (I know, you'll say more than that, but some will hang with him, believing it was just a wink.)
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 10:44 AM on August 14 [4 favorites]


Anyhow, cheap travel is an equaliser that often makes you bond with your fellow humans and we can't have that. Bikes, trains and pedestrian safety are all things they hate. Socialism indeed.

Retired political cartoonist Chuck Asay was a master of "you're just supposed to understand that this thing I've drawn is bad without me telling you", and he'd always draw people on bikes to indicate that a particular panel took place in a world where the government had destroyed human freedom.
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:45 AM on August 14 [5 favorites]


I understand the urge to look for silver linings here, but if the alt-right isn't winning, they're sure as shit not losing. Torch-carrying white supremacists were necessary but not sufficient for Trump to win -- he was carried across the finish line by the casual bigotry of so-called "Average Joe Republicans" who could look past the scapegoating and demonization as long as it would give them a tax cut.

All today's statement reflects is that Trump believes he can have it both ways, and I see no reason to believe that he's wrong. He checks the "racism bad" box, the so-called "average Joes" hear what they want to hear, and the Republican coalition continues to march in lockstep. As for how it will be received by the Nazis, well, I think the Daily Stormer post that was going around yesterday takes care of that -- they know he's just doing what he has to do, and they seem fine with a little bit of messaging discipline as long as they know they can trust their guy. And they do.
posted by tonycpsu at 10:47 AM on August 14 [27 favorites]


One step forward, one step back on the whole "racism is evil" thing: Fox News–Trump 'seriously considering' a pardon for ex-Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

The weirdest part is that the story is attributed to "a conversation with Fox News at his club in Bedminster, N.J." It's unclear who was in this conversation or why or whether they plan to do any actual reporting on it or WTF Fox News?
posted by zachlipton at 10:49 AM on August 14 [7 favorites]


I wish I could be a fly on the wall when some poor staffer has to tell Trump that pardons don't work on contempt of court.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 10:51 AM on August 14 [8 favorites]


I care that the online Nazis hate what he just said and won't be quite so emboldened (some damage has already been done from the non-response).

If I thought this was true, I'd agree with you. But I suspect the reaction from the Nazis is more like, "Meh, he just said that because They forced him to so they could placate the normies." Like the rest of us, they know what he really thinks.

On preview, totally agree with tonycpsu.
posted by holborne at 10:52 AM on August 14 [4 favorites]


It looks like the President can pardon criminal contempt, which is what Arpaio was convicted of. Civil contempt is a different matter, to say nothing of the contempt many of us have for him in our hearts.
posted by zachlipton at 10:56 AM on August 14 [6 favorites]


After days of pressure, U.S. President admits racism is bad.

After days of pressure, U.S. President looks around in bewilderment and says yet again, "why is everybody picking on me? All I want to do is bask in the glory of the prize, I didn't know it would be this hard."
posted by Melismata at 10:58 AM on August 14 [7 favorites]


From WaPo's Daily 202: Evidence of climate change abounds amid extreme weather in the Pacific Northwest, specifically, this:
Local officials across the United States worry that it is becoming more difficult to secure help from FEMA for all sorts of natural disasters. Since January, members of Congress and state officials have protested initial FEMA denials following a tornado outbreak in Louisiana, flooding in North Carolina, and snowstorms in Pennsylvania and Oregon. … The Trump administration has been hinting that it might limit federal spending on disaster relief and preparation, and FEMA is considering whether to draft regulations to shift more responsibility for rebuilding to the states.”
posted by ZeusHumms at 10:58 AM on August 14 [9 favorites]


Was Arpaio's conviction in federal court? I thought pardons didn't work on state court convictions.
posted by msalt at 11:04 AM on August 14


I don't think it's coincidence that the story about the Arpaio pardon is coming out (reported by Fox News -- imagine that) at more or less the exact same time as Trump's statement "condemning" white supremacists. The Arpaio thing is pure chum for the base.
posted by holborne at 11:04 AM on August 14 [19 favorites]


Anyhow, cheap travel is an equaliser that often makes you bond with your fellow humans and we can't have that. Bikes, trains and pedestrian safety are all things they hate. Socialism indeed.

Also - the building of the highway system was extremely racist: Top infrastructure official explains how America used highways to destroy black neighborhoods:
In the first 20 years of the federal interstate system alone, Foxx said, highway construction displaced 475,000 families and over a million Americans. Most of them were low-income people of color in urban cores.
Robert Moses did the same in NYC:
As the Department of Transportation dealt with its own obstacles, Moses gained enough power to charge ahead in building 13 expressways throughout the five boroughs. The impact that they had on the surrounding neighborhoods was swift, and occasionally devastating; the Cross Bronx Expressway, for example, cut off low-income and immigrant communities and devastated property values for residents in those areas.
Maybe the train-haters just like destroying black communities (one of the few consistent positions right-wing folks seem to hold). They certainly aren't doing anything to demonstrate that's not the case.
posted by melissasaurus at 11:05 AM on August 14 [22 favorites]


Was Arpaio's conviction in federal court? I thought pardons didn't work on state court convictions.

Indeed. The conviction was in the United States District Court for the District of Arizona.
posted by holborne at 11:06 AM on August 14 [2 favorites]


FEMA is considering whether to draft regulations to shift more responsibility for rebuilding to the states

This statement could not be uttered with a straight face by anyone even remotely familiar with how the current disaster recovery programs are run. Its already an almost entirely state-run system where all the feds do is provide the money and tell you all the ways you didn't spend it correctly (after the fact, when it comes to figuring out how to structure compliant programs up front they are of basically no help).
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 11:10 AM on August 14 [7 favorites]


Just a reminder that, given three official chances, Donald Trump could not find any of his own words to defend his daughter, son-in-law, and grandchildren.
posted by Room 641-A at 11:10 AM on August 14 [36 favorites]


So basically, in order to be allowed to condemn the Nazis, even insincerely, to avoid getting branded a "race traitor" with the violence directed against him that implies, Trump had to exchange a white supremacist prisoner to buy the Nazis off. It's like we're in the middle of a secret internal war with an enemy whose name we dare not speak. Ugh.
posted by saulgoodman at 11:20 AM on August 14 [17 favorites]


Its already an almost entirely state-run system where all the feds do is provide the money

That would be the "responsibility" they want to shift to the states.
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 11:20 AM on August 14 [8 favorites]


NYT: How a Conservative TV Giant Is Ridding Itself of Regulation. A detailed look at how the chairman of Sinclair Broadcasting has worked with FCC Chair Ajit Pai to ease media ownership restrictions.
posted by zachlipton at 11:25 AM on August 14 [20 favorites]


I'm kind of enjoying the irony that all of David Duke's plastic surgery and botox prevents any show of anger.

(That's good.)
posted by Room 641-A at 11:26 AM on August 14 [8 favorites]


All today's statement reflects is that Trump believes he can have it both ways, and I see no reason to believe that he's wrong. He checks the "racism bad" box, the so-called "average Joes" hear what they want to hear, and the Republican coalition continues to march in lockstep.

Not only "average Joes," but also dishonest apologists like David Brooks. I would like to be pleasantly surprised this Friday by a full-throated condemnation on NPR of Trump's embrace of racism by Brooks (or even by Dionne, for that matter), but I am not expecting it.
posted by Gelatin at 11:38 AM on August 14


The Trump administration is giving insurance companies an extra three weeks to decide whether to offer insurance plans through the Affordable Care Act markets, and how much to charge, while a White House spokesman says Trump is "working with his staff and his Cabinet to consider the issues raised by the CSR payments" -- like if he will support continuing to pay what he has called "bailouts." (NPR, Aug. 14, 2017)
posted by filthy light thief at 11:50 AM on August 14 [3 favorites]


I'm kind of enjoying the irony that all of David Duke's plastic surgery and botox prevents any show of anger.


He's (amazingly) the less-funny Carrot Top.
posted by rc3spencer at 11:50 AM on August 14


Another impact to climate change science: the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Headquartered in Geneva, under the aegis of the United Nations, operates on a $4.3 million dollar annual budget, of which the U.S. paid almost $2 million -- but that ended Trump. To be fair, the GOP has been trying to not pay this in the past, but now they actually can stop paying for this. (Nick Stockton for Wired, Aug. 11, 2017)

IPCC has some savings, but this still this could be really bad for the panel. (Also, I'm not sure if that's really a $4.3 million budget, or how much was given for this project, per this weirdly formatted Climate Change News article from May 12, 2017.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:05 PM on August 14 [2 favorites]


Let's Kickstart that panel and get some real money in there.
posted by Autumnheart at 12:06 PM on August 14 [8 favorites]


Matthew Yglesias, Vox: The Trump Tango is tiresome and pointless — A half-hearted disavowal way too late is something we’ve seen before.
There are certainly subjects on which the dictum “better late than never” applies. And a president who actually came around on the issue of white nationalism would, indeed, be preferable to one who stubbornly stuck to his guns.

But the Trump Tango never involves an apology, a change of heart, or even a good-faith effort to pretend to be sorry.

Rather than remorse, it offers his allies and supporters an excuse. It would be untenable, for example, for the CEOs of consumer-facing companies to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with a president who refuses to condemn white supremacists no matter how hungry they are for corporate tax cuts. By issuing a statement — no matter how late, reluctant, or obviously fake — Trump gives corporate America the excuse it needs to pretend to believe him. [...]

The instinct to criticize Trump for late or inadequate responses is, on some level, pointless and self-defeating. He’s proven time and again that, given enough focus, he’s perfectly willing to execute the tango. But pressing him to do it only serves to let his collaborators off the hook. Rich, powerful septuagenarians who’ve defied the conventional wisdom and succeeded don’t change, and it’s time to stop waiting for Donald Trump.
posted by tonycpsu at 12:10 PM on August 14 [28 favorites]


NYT Dealbook: Merck’s C.E.O. Took a Stand. What About Other Executives?
When I asked one chief executive Monday morning why he had remained publicly silent, he told me: “Just look at what he did to Ken. I’m not sticking my head up.” Which, of course, is the reason he said I could not quote him by name.
These people run multi-billion dollar companies and they're terrified of a damm tweet from a guy with a 34% approval rating.
posted by zachlipton at 12:20 PM on August 14 [77 favorites]


Most of 'em voted for the fucker.
posted by Burhanistan at 12:24 PM on August 14 [14 favorites]


...and in what could be considered interesting timing, before Trump specifically shamed Nazis, his team aired a re-election ad that focuses upon Trump's enemies who don't want him to succeed.

It's mind-blowing that he while he later says Americans need to learn to love one another, he approves an ad discussing his ENEMIES. His American enemies who won't let him do his job.

That not ONE SINGLE PERSON IN THE TRUMPWORLD thought, "This may not be the best time to be divisive," is staggering. And of course, the idiocy of running re-election ads EIGHT MONTHS INTO HIS PRESIDENCY.
posted by yes I said yes I will Yes at 12:25 PM on August 14 [26 favorites]


These people run multi-billion dollar companies and they're terrified of a damm tweet from a guy with a 34% approval rating.

Well, yeah. Duh. That's how it works.
posted by Melismata at 12:25 PM on August 14


Just look at what he did to Ken. I’m not sticking my head up.

Just look what he did to Ken? What the fuck was so bad about what he did to Ken? A mean Tweet that was widely derided and will have precisely zero real-world effect on the guy's bottom line, personal wealth, or anything else? That's what this other guy is afraid of? Lord Jesus, I fucking hate people sometimes.
posted by holborne at 12:29 PM on August 14 [59 favorites]


“Just look at what he did to Ken. I’m not sticking my head up.”

What do you mean 'what he did to Ken?' Merck's stock is up half a percent today so far. I don't think he 'did' much of anything. The Trump administration has only been effective at harming already vulnerable groups, not billion dollar corporations. If that CEO thinks Trump is going to convince the Republicans to support Medicare negotiating prescription drug prices then he's as stupid as he is cowardly.
posted by jedicus at 12:30 PM on August 14 [28 favorites]


Doxxed White Supremacist Caught Red-Handed With Torch at Charlottesville Wants to Put That Genie Back in the Bottle
“I did not expect the photo to be shared as much as it was,” Cvjetanovic said. “I understand the photo has a very negative connotation. But I hope that the people sharing the photo are willing to listen that I’m not the angry racist they see in that photo.”

Cvjetanovic then referenced the 14 words, an infamous neo-Nazi motto, while continuing to insist he’s not “hateful.”
An excellent way to keep people from thinking you're a racist Nazi fuck is to not act like a racist Nazi fuck.
posted by kirkaracha at 1:12 PM on August 14 [28 favorites]


NYT Dealbook: Merck’s C.E.O. Took a Stand. What About Other Executives?

When I asked one chief executive Monday morning why he had remained publicly silent, he told me: “Just look at what he did to Ken. I’m not sticking my head up.” Which, of course, is the reason he said I could not quote him by name.

These people run multi-billion dollar companies and they're terrified of a damm tweet from a guy with a 34% approval rating.


They're terrified that he can lash out at them on twitter and it'll result in problems from his army of assclowns. Or more indirectly, if he's sufficiently angry with them that it stays in his mind past five minutes, that he'll use government machinery to harm their organization.

I honestly was wondering this morning how long until we see this chain of events:
  • CEO defies Trump
  • Trump lashes out and harms the business
  • Board of Directors removes CEO as a result
There's nothing remotely about that inconsistent with the "the duty of the company is to the shareholders" statement that is used to defend all sorts of egregious shit. Can anyone here claim with a straight face that they can't imagine one of those sorts saying they can't afford to alienate 37% of the population?
posted by phearlez at 1:12 PM on August 14 [2 favorites]


If that CEO thinks Trump is going to convince the Republicans to support Medicare negotiating prescription drug prices then he's as stupid as he is cowardly.

Not only that, but these CEOs are not in any danger, physical or otherwise. Sticking your head up for what, exactly? A sharp rebuke from Twitter? These cowards are never going to want for material or survival needs many lifetimes over. They could end participation in public life right this instant and would still be better off than 99% of the world, and that's not even what's being asked of them. It's just to show the tiniest bit of integrity, which is apparently just... too... scawy!
posted by orbit-3 at 1:17 PM on August 14 [13 favorites]


An excellent way to keep people from thinking you're a racist Nazi fuck is to not act like a racist Nazi fuck.

It's been established that part of their strategy is to get media attention, and use it to amplify their core message. The idea is to attract new adherents, who hear stuff like
“As a white nationalist, I care for all people,” Cvjetanovic said. “We all deserve a future for our children and for our culture. White nationalists aren’t all hateful; we just want to preserve what we have.”
and think it sounds reasonable, or at least better than "Kill all the _______", which is the real message. The media is falling into a trap by allowing these people to be quoted and sound reasonable.

Also, I could be totally wrong on this, but is it "doxxing" if you are in public as a rally? Isn't doxxing revealing someone's online anonymous persona?
posted by cell divide at 1:21 PM on August 14 [22 favorites]


The media is falling into a trap

THIS THIS THIS everywhere all the time
posted by Melismata at 1:22 PM on August 14 [14 favorites]


For real, when we call this "doxxing" we're giving them victim status. Which they crave.

What's a more concise way to say "just giving everyone you know an FYI, in case they weren't already aware, that you were at this public event without a hood on"?
posted by witchen at 1:24 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


Still catching up with that thread, and it's a bit of a derail, but I knew a couple different dudes, neither white, who worked at different branches of Top Dog back in the day.

They weren't publicly insane at that point; I remember vague grumblings but they were generally regarded as an ok place to work, although the late night rush at the one just off Telegraph was pretty crazy.
posted by aspersioncast at 1:24 PM on August 14


The media is falling into a trap by allowing these people to be quoted and sound reasonable.

Indeed, they're giving Richard Spencer the honor of a press conference at this very moment. Why? He's not lacking for ways to communicate. The press doesn't have to show up at his command.
posted by zachlipton at 1:26 PM on August 14 [20 favorites]


It's been established that part of their strategy is to get media attention, and use it to amplify their core message. The idea is to attract new adherents, who hear stuff like

“As a white nationalist, I care for all people,” Cvjetanovic said. “We all deserve a future for our children and for our culture. White nationalists aren’t all hateful; we just want to preserve what we have.”


Given how rabid otherwise sensible-seeming folks can get about the question of privilege? This is not the stupidest tack for them to take. If you refuse to accept that some of the things they "have" are unjust then you are primed to believe they are actually being deprived something they should get to keep.
posted by phearlez at 1:30 PM on August 14 [2 favorites]


The answer to CEO timidity is to scare them even more. It's hard to do that if you're not a psychopathic president, but easier if there are a lot of you. Bur I wouldn't waste much time trying, unless you have a good idea on how to actually hit their bottom line.

'Acting with integrity' is bred out of most CEOs by the time they get to that position, assuming it was ever part of their modus operandi in the first place - which, given that they've played the game so well so far, is doubtful. If you want to judge the level to which these people are capable of shame, look at their pay.

which means I am now feeling increased respect for a lawyer who's CEO of a pharmaceutical giant. 2017, you scamp.
posted by Devonian at 1:33 PM on August 14 [5 favorites]


“As a white nationalist, I care for all people,” Cvjetanovic said. “We all deserve a future for our children and for our culture. White nationalists aren’t all hateful; we just want to preserve what we have.”

Yes, you do. You want to preserve a system where you are privileged over everyone else; where your children's future is secure, but the future for everyone else is precarious; where your culture is the only one we see - as has been the case for hundreds of years. Of course you want to preserve it.

This statement is infuriating in its insularity, smugness, and un-examined privilege.
posted by nubs at 1:33 PM on August 14 [23 favorites]


“As a white nationalist, I care for all people,” Cvjetanovic said.

And yet your comrades just ran a bunch of people over in a car. Fuck you buddy, we see you.
posted by Existential Dread at 1:36 PM on August 14 [17 favorites]


“As a white nationalist, I care for all people,” Cvjetanovic said. “We all deserve a future for our children and for our culture. White nationalists aren’t all hateful; we just want to preserve what we have.”

Says the guy who if alive in Hitler's Germany would have been sent to the gas chambers as an Untermensch.

People are so fucking stupid.
posted by Talez at 1:37 PM on August 14 [6 favorites]


Also, I could be totally wrong on this, but is it "doxxing" if you are in public as a rally? Isn't doxxing revealing someone's online anonymous persona?

Like "trolling," "doxxing" is used by different people to mean somewhat different things. There's no universally agreed upon definition.

It is obfuscatory to say "Doxxing [implying one definition] is always bad. Therefore it is wrong to doxx [implying a different definition] this person." The obfuscation may be accidental or intentional.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 1:45 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


"White nationalists aren't hateful" seems to have gained very little traction this weekend, thankfully.
posted by Artw at 1:52 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


Man, they must hate airplanes, then.
posted by soren_lorensen at 9:09 AM on August 14 [7 favorites +]


I can't speak about American conservatives, but apparently Canadian ones have a super-duper hatred for planes. And an even worse opinion of aerospace.

I can say that because I just happened to read a screed today from the Canadian Taxpayers Federation explaining exactly those positions. Apparently both industries are a giant boondoggle that sucks government money faster than a parched traveller at a desert waterhole. Actually, they call it a "giant pyramid scheme."

So, yeah, if trains are bad, planes are worse.
posted by sardonyx at 1:55 PM on August 14 [2 favorites]


This is not the stupidest tack for them to take.

Not the stupidest, perhaps, but pretty bad.
posted by rhizome at 1:58 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


There's nothing remotely about that inconsistent with the "the duty of the company is to the shareholders" statement that is used to defend all sorts of egregious shit. Can anyone here claim with a straight face that they can't imagine one of those sorts saying they can't afford to alienate 37% of the population?

Oh, I would LOVE to see a Board of Directors of a publicly traded company try to remove a CEO because he stood up against white supremacy. I would LOVE to see that. Business judgment rule notwithstanding, the annual meeting that year would be...quite something.
posted by holborne at 2:02 PM on August 14 [8 favorites]


It's strange seeing Nora Reed on Twitter. Wave if you see this from the Twitterverse.


(Also, fuck you pay her Gizmodo)
posted by Yowser at 2:07 PM on August 14 [8 favorites]


Yes, you do. You want to preserve a system where you are privileged over everyone else; where your children's future is secure, but the future for everyone else is precarious; where your culture is the only one we see - as has been the case for hundreds of years. Of course you want to preserve it.

A dear friend posted a picture of a slice of pie on her Facebook with the caption, "Rights are not a pie!" I wish I could get this across to everyone. White supremacists feel that rights and privileges are a pie and they want that whole pie for themselves.

I wish I could wave a magic wand and banish zero-sum thinking from everyone's brain.
posted by Rosie M. Banks at 2:07 PM on August 14 [8 favorites]


So, yeah, if trains are bad, planes are worse.

Trains, Planes, and not Automobiles
posted by nubs at 2:11 PM on August 14


I mean, pay them. (shit)
posted by Yowser at 2:13 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


Steinmetz detained in Israel in money-laundering probe.
It was the second time Steinmetz had been detained by Israeli authorities since December, when he was placed under house arrest as part of a corruption probe involving mining deals in the African nation of Guinea.

Besides the Guinea investigation, the Israeli billionaire was charged in Romania last year with forming an organised criminal group and money laundering in a property-related case that cost the state $145 million.
Relevant here possibly, because Steinmetz and Kushner families have been linked in many business deals, although the Kushners contend they have only worked with the nephew of the Steinmetz who has been detained today.
posted by cell divide at 2:13 PM on August 14 [6 favorites]


(Also, fuck you pay her Gizmodo)

What is going on with this. As far as I can tell they included their tweets in a piece they posted?
posted by lalex at 2:18 PM on August 14


have a super-duper hatred for planes. And an even worse opinion of aerospace.

I can say that because I just happened to read a screed today from the Canadian Taxpayers Federation explaining exactly those positions. Apparently both industries are a giant boondoggle that sucks government money faster than a parched traveller at a desert waterhole. Actually, they call it a "giant pyramid scheme."


Let me guess: they hate Bombardier?
posted by ocschwar at 2:22 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


They hate everything french.
posted by Yowser at 2:25 PM on August 14


Maybe the train-haters just like destroying black communities (one of the few consistent positions right-wing folks seem to hold). They certainly aren't doing anything to demonstrate that's not the case.

Trains are constrained by physics. They can only tolerate so much curvature and so much slope. That in turn means Newtonian mechanics decides who gets eminent-domained, while with highways, you can snake around and pick your victims.
posted by ocschwar at 2:37 PM on August 14 [9 favorites]


"White nationalists aren't hateful" seems to have gained very little traction this weekend, thankfully."

#notallnazis
posted by horsewithnoname at 2:38 PM on August 14 [3 favorites]


Relevant here possibly, because Steinmetz and Kushner families have been linked in many business deals, although the Kushners contend they have only worked with the nephew of the Steinmetz who has been detained today.

To listen to my Israeli friends, there's nothing but dodgy dealings among the families who happen to own most of the land in the country. it's an 'Everyone knows' that if any of them got properly investigated, the whole fabric would fall apart in short order.
posted by Devonian at 2:38 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


Let me guess: they hate Bombardier?
posted by ocschwar at 2:22 PM on August 14


You guessed it. They go on for five paragraphs about Bombardier. Here's just a sample: "if Bombardier sold brooms instead of airplanes, the market would have put it out of its misery decades ago."

I'd agree that they hate everything French, but this started out taking a shot at the Winnipeg-based Centre for Aerospace Technology and Training, so apparently they're upset about western investment too.
posted by sardonyx at 2:44 PM on August 14


I'd agree that they hate everything French, but this started out taking a shot at the Winnipeg-based Centre for Aerospace Technology and Training, so apparently they're upset about western investment too.

In my experience, the Canadian Taxpayer's Federation has yet to meet any use of money by the government that they approve of. I'm not sure why the media bothers going to them for quotes on any topic, because they are predictable, boring, and actually add very little of value to any conversation about taxation or budgets.
posted by nubs at 2:49 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


SCOOP-O-CLOCK! WaPo, Tom Hamburger, Carol D. Leonnig and Rosalind S. Helderman: Trump campaign emails show aide’s repeated efforts to set up Russia meetings
Three days after Donald Trump named his campaign foreign policy team in March 2016, the youngest of the new advisers sent an email to seven campaign officials with the subject line: “Meeting with Russian Leadership - Including Putin.”

The adviser, George Papadopoulos, offered to set up “a meeting between us and the Russian leadership to discuss US-Russia ties under President Trump,” telling them his Russian contacts welcomed the opportunity, according to internal campaign emails read to The Washington Post.

The proposal sent a ripple of concern through campaign headquarters in Trump Tower. Campaign co-chairman Sam Clovis wrote that he thought NATO allies should be consulted before any plans were made. Another Trump adviser, retired Navy Rear Adm. Charles Kubic, cited legal concerns, including a possible violation of U.S. sanctions against Russia and of the Logan Act, which prohibits U.S. citizens from unauthorized negotiation with foreign governments.

But Papadopoulos, a campaign volunteer with scant foreign policy experience, persisted. Between March and September, the self-described energy consultant sent at least a half-dozen requests for Trump, as he turned from primary candidate to party nominee, or for members of his team to meet with Russian officials. Among those to express concern about the effort was then-campaign chairman Paul Manafort, who rejected in May 2016 a proposal from Papadopoulos for Trump to do so.

The exchanges are among more than 20,000 pages of documents the Trump campaign turned over to congressional committees this month after review by White House and defense lawyers. The selection of Papadopoulos’s emails were read to The Post by a person with access to them. Two other people with access to the emails confirmed the general tone of the exchanges and some specific passages within them.
They were trying to meet with Putin in March? Before he even had the nomination? And at least some of these guys were smart enough to see a problem here?
posted by zachlipton at 2:50 PM on August 14 [62 favorites]


They're fine with investment as long as it's in Alberta.

Hell, they were fine with Alberta burning up billions of dollars and giving away the tar sands to American companies, as long as a Conservative party does it.
posted by Yowser at 2:51 PM on August 14 [2 favorites]


That's my take on them as well, nubs. Normally, I just ignore them. (I really should unsubscribe from their email list, especially as I never signed up to receive email from them in the first place.) Ninety-nine times out of one-hundred I just hit delete without reading their rants, but this one caught my eye because the topic was original (at least it was for them).
posted by sardonyx at 2:53 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


Three days after Donald Trump named his campaign foreign policy team in March 2016, the youngest of the new advisers sent an email to seven campaign officials with the subject line: “Meeting with Russian Leadership - Including Putin.”

George Papadopoulos is an "energy consultant". Coughrosneftcough.

Serious question: was Trump paying him, or was he another one of Trump's guys who were ostensibly working for free?
posted by Joe in Australia at 2:58 PM on August 14 [7 favorites]


Among those to express concern about the effort was then-campaign chairman Paul Manafort, who rejected in May 2016 a proposal from Papadopoulos for Trump to do so.

Imagine being Paul Manafort, and this shady shit is what you do for a living, what you've done your entire adult life, and all these Trump-hanger-ons are like, "Hey Paul! I've got some ideas about the ollusion-cay! I put them in writing in a mass e-mail!"
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 2:59 PM on August 14 [56 favorites]


The story calls him a "campaign volunteer."
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 2:59 PM on August 14 [2 favorites]


George Papadopoulos is an "energy consultant"
And now they've ruined Webster.
posted by mcdoublewide at 3:03 PM on August 14 [15 favorites]


NYT, Haberman and Thrush, Bannon in Limbo as Trump Faces Growing Calls for the Strategist’s Ouster
Rupert Murdoch has repeatedly urged President Trump to fire him. Anthony Scaramucci, the president’s former communications director, thrashed him on television as a white nationalist. Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster, the national security adviser, refused to even say he could work with him.

For months, Mr. Trump has considered ousting Stephen K. Bannon, the White House chief strategist and relentless nationalist who ran the Breitbart website and called it a “platform for the alt-right.” Mr. Trump has now relegated Mr. Bannon to a kind of internal exile, and has not met face-to-face for more than a week with a man who was once a fixture in the Oval Office, according to aides and friends of the president.

So far, Mr. Trump has not been able to follow through — a product of his dislike of confrontation, the bonds of foxhole friendship forged during the 2016 presidential campaign and concerns about what mischief Mr. Bannon might do once he leaves the protective custody of the West Wing.
Adelson has come out in favor of McMaster, disavowing a campaign against him that Adelson himself is funding. Of course, Pelosi called for Bannon to go today, which might have just been the one thing that keeps Bannon around, lest anyone think Trump is doing what Democrats want him to.
posted by zachlipton at 3:04 PM on August 14 [10 favorites]


Papadopoulos was the Trump advisor who had his stint in the Model UN in his linkedin profile.
posted by peeedro at 3:04 PM on August 14 [7 favorites]


Yowser, not to be all "cite", I would love to see that if you have it; I live in Alberta, and I don't recall any such stuff from the CTF. It might be that what their spokesperson says varies by province to province, which wouldn't surprise me.

The amusing thing out here for the moment with the CTF is that the finance critic of the Wildrose/UCP party - and former Alberta CTF spokesperson himself - Derek Fildebrandt was exposed last week for renting out his government subsidized apartment in Edmonton on Airbnb; essentially, personally profiting off of something the government was already paying him for. And today, questions are emerging about him apparently double-dipping for meal expenses. The CTF has been very quiet about these revelations, surprisingly. Anyways, my fruede it is schaden.

/end canadian politics derail
posted by nubs at 3:05 PM on August 14 [3 favorites]


'Acting with integrity' is bred out of most CEOs by the time they get to that position, assuming it was ever part of their modus operandi in the first place...

Ms Wimp and I were just discussing that one of the pernicious effects of high CEO compensation, especially when it is tied to stock performance, is creating an extremely powerful incentive to take ethical and financial shortcuts. Most people could live for their lifetimes on what a CEO can make in a year. There is absolutely no strong motivation to look any further into the future than the next quarter or at most the next year if you can make $20-30M this year by jacking the stock price. Especially true when the SEC/DoJ levy fines that are much lower than the the take for financial crimes.
posted by Mental Wimp at 3:07 PM on August 14 [12 favorites]


Wait, wait, wait. I didn't read far enough before I posted that. WTF is this?
Top administration officials like to joke that working for Mr. Trump is like toiling in the court of Henry VIII. Mick Mulvaney, the president’s budget director, recently handed out copies of the play “A Man for all Seasons,” about the last years of Sir Thomas More, Henry’s religiously zealous chancellor, who was executed for failing to fulfill his monarch’s directive to get him a divorce from Anne Boleyn. Mr. Bannon read it, according to a person familiar with the situation, and was amused when an associate compared him to More.
posted by zachlipton at 3:13 PM on August 14 [23 favorites]


Yeah, I don't really think Steve Bannon is a latter-day St Thomas More....
posted by tivalasvegas at 3:20 PM on August 14 [9 favorites]


Perhaps a latter-day version of Monty Python's Dennis Moore. "He steals from the poor... and gives to the rich..."
posted by Joey Michaels at 3:22 PM on August 14 [12 favorites]


He takes an absolutist stance on not having principles.
posted by Artw at 3:24 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


Sounds like Kim Jong-un was feeling marginalized so he has announced that he has reviewed the plans for firing missiles near Guam and has been watching the foolish and stupid moves of the Yankees.

Waiting on a response from Trump Don-un
posted by Justinian at 3:26 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


A key passage from zachlipton's link to the new WaPo school:
Steven L. Hall, who retired from the CIA in 2015 after 30 years of managing the agency’s Russia operations, said when told by The Post about the emails: “The bottom line is that there’s no doubt in my mind that the Russian government was casting a wide net when they were looking at the American election. I think they were doing very basic intelligence work: Who’s out there? Who’s willing to play ball? And how can we use them?”
This assessment seems quite reasonable--an adversary like the government of the Russian Federation would want as many hooks in the meat as possible to use as leverage/kompromat later. Apparently, though, they found someone in George Papadopolous whom even the shady clowns of the Trump campaign looked at and said, "Okay, this is too stupid even for us".

However, in spite of Manafort's spokesman saying that these emails show that the higher ups were concerned about the legal ramifications of DJT meeting with Russian governmental agents, there's still plenty of fire there. I don't think it's too much of a stretch to conclude that Manafort's presence at Junior's meeting with Veselnitskaya suggests an openness to working with the Russian government but also awareness that DJT could not be directly implicated. I think there's much more in the campaign and financial records of the major players to suggest untoward/collusionary links to Russia, even if more evidence surfaces that lower-level associates failed at setting up meetings between DJT and the Russian government.

We haven't even gotten into Flynn's repeated contacts with and payments from the Russian Federation, Session's undisclosed meetings with Kislyak, and Kushner's shady-ass attempt to set up a secret procedure to communicate with Moscow using Russian infrastructure.
posted by Excommunicated Cardinal at 3:30 PM on August 14 [9 favorites]


I'm not sure if this has been reported before (searched the thread and didn't find it) but The Hill is reporting that the Justice Department is requesting information from Dreamhost on 1.3 million visitors to disruptj20.com. Dreamhost is fighting it.
posted by WidgetAlley at 3:30 PM on August 14 [21 favorites]


There are certainly ways in which Bannon may be closer to Thomas More than anyone would like to see...

(Contrast the characterization in A Man for All Seasons with More's portrayal in Wolf Hall...)
posted by suelac at 3:31 PM on August 14 [3 favorites]


The joy of Bannon's putative ouster is twofold - the thought of him getting the boot in a humiliating and personally damaging way, only to cause maximum trouble for 45 afterwards, is entirely to my taste. But the thought of him clinging doggedly on in there, effectively isolated and acting as a distraction and a chaotic attractor, is also quite pleasing.

The whole sorry squirming mass of maggots should be cleansed with fire, obvs. but dysfunction is acting as a brake on some of the terrible things that could be happening, and I choose to celebrate that aspect of this historical administration. Or hysterical maladministration.
posted by Devonian at 3:37 PM on August 14 [6 favorites]


We've been here before.
posted by Artw at 3:39 PM on August 14 [6 favorites]


Donald J. Trump‏ @realDonaldTrump
Made additional remarks on Charlottesville and realize once again that the #Fake News Media will never be satisfied...truly bad people!
3:29 PM - 14 Aug 2017
The President of the United States of America, everybody.
posted by Talez at 3:40 PM on August 14 [73 favorites]


The joy of Bannon's putative ouster is twofold - the thought of him getting the boot in a humiliating and personally damaging way, only to cause maximum trouble for 45 afterwards, is entirely to my taste. But the thought of him clinging doggedly on in there, effectively isolated and acting as a distraction and a chaotic attractor, is also quite pleasing.

Imagine the rumors (and resultant raging tweetstorms) were he to meet with Mueller after his ouster.
posted by Existential Dread at 3:41 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


My question is what changed? There were a bunch of people who seemingly knew what was up and were putting the breaks on Russian contacts early on, and then a few months later the highest officials in the campaign are having the "adoption" meeting? In a lot of ways, this is worse, because it indicates the campaign knew full well what they were getting into.

The other not-so-subtle point is that at least two of the five people Trump named to his foreign policy team (Page and Papadopoulos) were apparently up to their ass in Russian contacts.

Anyway, we have a Trump tweet: "Made additional remarks on Charlottesville and realize once again that the #Fake News Media will never be satisfied...truly bad people!" That's basically straight up "fine, I sad the Nazis are evil like you told me to and you people still aren't satisfied," further undercutting (as if that could be possible) the sincerity of his message. Or as Ashley Feinberg puts it: "what was even the point of saying nazis are bad if you’re not going to praise me"
posted by zachlipton at 3:42 PM on August 14 [37 favorites]


We've been here before.

Indeed, Bannon is the hognose snake of the Executive Branch: you're sure he's dead, but look away from him for one second and he slithers back into the undergrowth.

"If this threat display fails to deter a would-be predator, Steve Bannons often roll onto their backs and play dead, going so far as to emit a foul musk and fecal matter from their cloaca and let their tongues hang out of their mouth, sometimes accompanied by small droplets of blood. If they are rolled upright while in this state, they will often roll back as if insisting they really are dead. It has been observed that the Bannon, while appearing to be dead, will still watch the threat that caused the death pose. The Steve will 'resurrect' sooner if the threat is looking away from it than if the threat is looking at it."
posted by Rust Moranis at 3:45 PM on August 14 [7 favorites]


trump: SNOWFLAKE MILLENNIALS

also trump: i just did literally the absolute minimum and only after much criticism WHY ARENT YOU SATISFIED
posted by entropicamericana at 3:47 PM on August 14 [20 favorites]


Truly, 45 has less class than this place...
posted by Devonian at 3:51 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


Truly, 45 has less class than this place...

45 is just like school in July!
posted by Talez at 3:53 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


My question is what changed? There were a bunch of people who seemingly knew what was up and were putting the breaks on Russian contacts early on, and then a few months later the highest officials in the campaign are having the "adoption" meeting? In a lot of ways, this is worse, because it indicates the campaign knew full well what they were getting into.

Maybe nothing changed--the collusion was already in the works, but this guy said the quiet parts too loud in the wrong place. Michael Flynn was along in this enterprise since very early on. Manafort has had long standing ties to violent despots, Russian puppets, and the post-Soviet Criminal underworld. Similarly, Trump, his lawyer Michael Cohen, and associate Felix Sater have been involved with shady Russian money going back at least a decade.

As you say, though, more worrisome is the idea that something did change--as in true blackmail of campaign officials and/or the candidate--that drew in Trump, Manafort, Sessions, and Kushner. My bet would be direct evidence of financial crimes, money laundering, etc. Less likely would be things like the pee tape or child sexual abuse.
posted by Excommunicated Cardinal at 3:55 PM on August 14 [4 favorites]


the play “A Man for all Seasons,” about the last years of Sir Thomas More, Henry’s religiously zealous chancellor, who was executed for failing to fulfill his monarch’s directive to get him a divorce from Anne Boleyn.

Are these people (reporter and/or source; I can't tell) fucking illiterate? Henry did not direct More or anyone to get him a divorce/annulment from Anne Boleyn; he directed him to secure an annulment to his marriage to Catherine of Aragon so he could marry Anne Boleyn. Whom he semi-promptly executed so he could marry Jane Seymour.

ALSO, More was not executed over the divorce; he was executed for refusing to take the Oath of Supremacy acknowledging Henry as the head of the Church. Jesus Christ, this is like basic entry-level British history you could learn from watching fucking PBS.
posted by FelliniBlank at 3:59 PM on August 14 [62 favorites]


David Duke @DrDavidDuke
It's amazing to see how the media is able to bully the President of the United States into going along with their FAKE NEWS narrative.
10:31 AM · Aug 14, 2017

Donald J. Trump‏ @realDonaldTrump
Made additional remarks on Charlottesville and realize once again that the #Fake News Media will never be satisfied...truly bad people!
3:29 PM - 14 Aug 2017
posted by Room 641-A at 4:00 PM on August 14 [31 favorites]


So glad to see Trump admit that he only said "racism is bad" to satisfy his critics.
posted by FelliniBlank at 4:04 PM on August 14 [47 favorites]


There are certainly ways in which Bannon may be closer to Thomas More than anyone would like to see...

Beware presentism, though.

(In other words, I have higher standards for a 21st century developed semi-democratic country than I do for the fucking courtiers of Henry Tudor.)

But more to the point, St Thomas More was willing to die for his belief that the King was wrong. I don't think the weaselfascist Bannon has that much courage.
posted by tivalasvegas at 4:04 PM on August 14 [4 favorites]


The Times seems to have edited the article to more accurately Mooresplain, though without a correction:
Top administration officials like to joke that working for Mr. Trump is like toiling in the court of Henry VIII. Mick Mulvaney, the president’s budget director, recently handed out copies of the play “A Man for all Seasons,” about the last years of Sir Thomas More, Henry’s chancellor, who was executed for failing to endorse Henry’s split with Rome. Mr. Bannon read it, according to a person familiar with the situation, and was amused when an associate compared him to More.
posted by zachlipton at 4:22 PM on August 14 [6 favorites]


The Times seems to have edited the article to more accurately Mooresplain, though without a correction:

Whew, that somewhat restores my faith in (belated) proofreading and fact-checking.
posted by FelliniBlank at 4:29 PM on August 14 [2 favorites]


. . . she said, omitting the period at the end of the sentence.
posted by FelliniBlank at 4:30 PM on August 14 [4 favorites]


don't worry, FelliniBlank, all the cool kids are doing that anymore
posted by tivalasvegas at 4:36 PM on August 14 [5 favorites]


It's an Oxford period
posted by Room 641-A at 4:37 PM on August 14 [26 favorites]


what's a period
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 4:41 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


twenty pixels same as in etc
posted by cortex at 4:42 PM on August 14 [53 favorites]


what's a period

$20 same as in town.
posted by Talez at 4:43 PM on August 14 [5 favorites]


the spaces between your periods is troubling. see a doctor.
posted by waitangi at 4:47 PM on August 14 [5 favorites]


Wherein his own team says he can't be remotely presidential, and in fact most likely can't be not actively harmful.

Daily Beast: Trump Not Planning on Charlottesville Trip; ‘Why The Hell Would We Do That?’ Aides Say
Though presidents are often hypersensitive towards appearing to be on top of national crises, it is not entirely surprising that the president is currently passing on a trip to Charlottesville. On Monday, Trump finally, and specifically, called out white supremacists and white nationalists in prepared remarks from the White House, after days of brutal, bipartisan criticism for his initial, response that chided “many sides.” Two senior Trump aides, speaking on the condition of anonymity in order to speak freely, had earlier told The Daily Beast that there was no serious sign that West Wing staffers were even exploring a Charlottesville visit at this point.

“Why the hell would we do that?” one White House official bluntly said, stating that whatever the president did in Charlottesville at this stage would be “used against” him by critics and media voices. The official also conceded that it was unlikely that this president would be able to deliver rousing, healing oratory that is demanded in such a dire situation. Trump, the fear went, could potentially worsen matters by being there.
posted by chris24 at 5:09 PM on August 14 [52 favorites]


I could watch this statue come down all day.

Has the Confederacy finally lost the war for real? (probably not)
posted by uncleozzy at 5:13 PM on August 14 [12 favorites]


Angry protesters all around Trump Tower tonight.

In the Charlottesville thread about how this damages 45's support. I've thought on it more and I think a good parallel is, this is Trump's Kent State. People who were, to this point, not into politics or outraged and disgusted by this administration will feel this, and maybe get a little active.

This bit from the wikipedia about the aftermath of Kent State stood out to me: Just five days after the shootings, 100,000 people demonstrated in Washington, D.C., against the war and the killing of unarmed student protesters. Ray Price, Nixon's chief speechwriter from 1969 to 1974, recalled the Washington demonstrations saying, "The city was an armed camp. The mobs were smashing windows, slashing tires, dragging parked cars into intersections, even throwing bedsprings off overpasses into the traffic down below. This was the quote, student protest. That's not student protest, that's civil war."[10] Not only was Nixon taken to Camp David for two days for his own protection, but Charles Colson (Counsel to President Nixon from 1969 to 1973) stated that the military was called up to protect the administration from the angry students; he recalled that "The 82nd Airborne was in the basement of the executive office building, so I went down just to talk to some of the guys and walk among them, and they're lying on the floor leaning on their packs and their helmets and their cartridge belts and their rifles cocked and you're thinking, 'This can't be the United States of America. This is not the greatest free democracy in the world. This is a nation at war with itself.'"[10]

President Nixon and his administration's public reaction to the shootings was perceived by many in the anti-war movement as callous. Then National Security Advisor Henry Kissinger said the president was "pretending indifference". Stanley Karnow noted in his Vietnam: A History that "The [Nixon] administration initially reacted to this event with wanton insensitivity. Nixon's press secretary, Ron Ziegler, whose statements were carefully programmed, referred to the deaths as a reminder that 'when dissent turns to violence, it invites tragedy.'" Three days before the shootings, Nixon had talked of "bums" who were antiwar protestors on United States campuses,[47] to which the father of Allison Krause stated on national TV "My child was not a bum."[48]


He just opened a whole new spigot of disgust, and it isn't about policy. This shows the nation just how petty and small minded and fucked in the head he is, and people who up to now didn't care might start to care.
posted by vrakatar at 5:15 PM on August 14 [22 favorites]


Also it turns out that Nazis are actually rubbish at making trains run on time.

That's because it was the Italian fascists that made them run on time.

And if ya listen to Micheal Rupert they also made sure their fascism was the blending of government and corporate power.

Ron Howard's now raspy voiceover: It's still not true.
posted by rough ashlar at 5:18 PM on August 14


@thomaswatkins (AFP)
Mattis just stopped by Pentagon newsroom and suggested #transgender military ban not a done deal
posted by chris24 at 5:25 PM on August 14 [24 favorites]


Under Armour's CEO has stepped down from the American Manufacturing Council. (Single link to Under Armour's twitter, but that's where Kevin Plank's statement is.)
posted by yasaman at 5:25 PM on August 14 [39 favorites]


the spaces between your periods is troubling. see a doctor.

It's probably menopause.
posted by Room 641-A at 5:25 PM on August 14 [8 favorites]


Josh Barro: There is a large portion of Trump's white voter base that's really offended by the idea they are associated with white nationalists or overt racists — even if, at the same time, appeals to white resentment are a part of what draws them to Trump.
These are the sort of people who make a lot of statements that start "I'm not racist, but..."
They really didn't like it when Hillary Clinton called them deplorable, because when they insist they're not racist, they mean it. They know they're not racist because their idea of a racist is a torch-wielding white power protester, which they're not.
So when a bunch of white power protesters made a big spectacle of themselves, and then one of them killed a woman and injured more than a dozen other people, and then Trump gave an equivocal statement that seemed to validate their support of him anyway, this was embarrassing for Trump's other white backers.
First it was Clinton; now it's Trump himself, lumping them in with the deplorables.

posted by T.D. Strange at 5:26 PM on August 14 [24 favorites]


OK I was being *very* tongue in cheek about the Canadian Taxpayers Foundation having a pro-Alberta Conservatives bias. I have no evidence that they actually have any bias other than towards drowning the country in the bath water (I think that's how the analogy goes?) My apologies.
posted by Yowser at 5:28 PM on August 14


For the second time in a little over a month, somebody has used a rock to smash one of the panels in Boston's Holocaust Memorial. The memorial consists of six glass towers with the panes etched with numbers representing Shoah victims - and it sits in one of the most heavily traveled parts of the city.
posted by adamg at 5:36 PM on August 14 [3 favorites]


Under Armour's CEO has stepped down from the American Manufacturing Council.

Trump attacked the black CEO of Merck in 54 minutes when he dropped from the Council. And then again three hours ago. We are now up to one hour and 25 minutes since the white CEO of Under Armour made his statement resigning and no attack from Dear Leader.
posted by chris24 at 5:39 PM on August 14 [23 favorites]


will no one rid us of this turbulent drunk

yes i know that's a different henry and a different thomas but screw you, i do what i want
posted by murphy slaw at 5:41 PM on August 14 [19 favorites]




That's because it was the Italian fascists that made them run on time.

Also untrue.
posted by ckape at 5:43 PM on August 14 [6 favorites]


Jinx!

/knocks on bundle of sticks.
posted by Artw at 5:44 PM on August 14 [5 favorites]


Oh damnit, in my comment above I meant to say " I made a comment in the Charlottesville thread about how this damages 45's support."

Sorry. I blame the beer.
posted by vrakatar at 5:48 PM on August 14


NYT, Haberman and Thrush, Bannon in Limbo as Trump Faces Growing Calls for the Strategist’s Ouster
Despite being marginalized, Mr. Bannon consulted with the president repeatedly over the weekend as Mr. Trump struggled to respond to the neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville, Va. In general, Mr. Bannon has cautioned the president not to criticize far-right activists too severely for fear of antagonizing a small but energetic part of his base.

But what once endeared him to the president has now become a major liability. After the president waited two days to blame white supremacists for the violence in Charlottesville, there is new pressure from Mr. Trump’s critics to dismiss Mr. Bannon.

“I don’t think that White House has a chance of functioning properly as long as there’s a resident lunatic fringe,” said Mark Salter, a longtime adviser to Senator John McCain, Republican of Arizona. At best, he said, Mr. Bannon seems willing to “tolerate something that’s intolerable” in Mr. Trump’s base.
You don't say...
posted by chris24 at 5:50 PM on August 14 [34 favorites]


Re: Tudor renaissance and apocryphal historical quotes

And when the time comes, once we've survived the chaos, stand under an oak tree and pronounce: A DOJ factum est illud et est Muellerbile in oculis nostris.

apologies for any Latin-bungling; it's been a while since my semester of Latin
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 5:59 PM on August 14 [3 favorites]




Sorry. I blame the beer.

Never blame the beer.
posted by kirkaracha at 6:24 PM on August 14 [6 favorites]


Just out on the Daily Beast.

Paul Manafort Sought $850 Million Deal With Putin Ally and Alleged Gangster
Paul Manafort partnered on an $850 million New York real estate deal with an ally of Vladimir Putin and a Ukrainian moneyman whom the Justice Department recently described as an “organized crime member.”

That’s according a 2008 memo written by Rick Gates, Manafort’s business partner and fellow alumnus of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign. In it, Gates enthused about finalizing with the financing necessary to acquire New York’s louche Drake Hotel.

Two former federal prosecutors told The Daily Beast that the hotel deal was likely to be an item of focus for Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s inquiry into ties between Trump associates and the Kremlin.
---
Firtash’s alliance with Manafort to acquire the Drake has been reported before. But far less attention has gone to the involvement of another party: Oleg Deripaska, one of the wealthiest men in Russia—and a longtime Putin associate. In 2006, according to the Associated Press, Deripaska signed a $10 million annual contract with Manafort for what Manafort pitched as political and economic efforts inside the U.S. to “greatly benefit the Putin Government.”

But Manafort was more than Deripaska’s political operative. They were business partners, as well. “When Paul met with Mr. D last month he told Paul to lock in the other financing elements and then come back to him for the final piece of investment,” Gates wrote to two longtime business associates of Deripaska, Anton Vishnevsky and Andrey Zagorskiy, on July 1, 2008.

According to ex-prosecutors, a business relationship between a Kremlin-tied oligarch, an accused gangster and the manager of Donald Trump’s campaign is the sort of arrangement currently occupying Mueller’s time.
posted by chris24 at 6:38 PM on August 14 [25 favorites]


And Maddow just talked about this very long read in The New Yorker by Adam Davidson. He will be on her show tomorrow.

Trump’s Business of Corruption
What secrets will Mueller find when he investigates the President’s foreign deals?


Drip drip dripdripdrip.
posted by Room 641-A at 7:03 PM on August 14 [27 favorites]


Jesus Christ, today feels like we're getting the same number of major Trump scandals coming out as the first 5 months of his presidency put together! I literally cannot keep up.
posted by azuresunday at 7:06 PM on August 14 [3 favorites]


TINY FINGERS TINY HEART chant the protesters
posted by vrakatar at 7:16 PM on August 14 [18 favorites]




Trump attacked the black CEO of Merck in 54 minutes when he dropped from the Council. And then again three hours ago. We are now up to one hour and 25 minutes since the white CEO of Under Armour made his statement resigning and no attack from Dear Leader.

Probably scared by the word Armour.
posted by srboisvert at 7:22 PM on August 14 [12 favorites]




Statement from the Intel blog:
By Brian Krzanich, Chief Executive Officer

Earlier today, I tendered my resignation from the American Manufacturing Council. I resigned to call attention to the serious harm our divided political climate is causing to critical issues, including the serious need to address the decline of American manufacturing. Politics and political agendas have sidelined the important mission of rebuilding America’s manufacturing base.

I have already made clear my abhorrence at the recent hate-spawned violence in Charlottesville, and earlier today I called on all leaders to condemn the white supremacists and their ilk who marched and committed violence. I resigned because I want to make progress, while many in Washington seem more concerned with attacking anyone who disagrees with them. We should honor – not attack – those who have stood up for equality and other cherished American values. I hope this will change, and I remain willing to serve when it does.

I am not a politician. I am an engineer who has spent most of his career working in factories that manufacture the world’s most advanced devices. Yet, it is clear even to me that nearly every issue is now politicized to the point where significant progress is impossible. Promoting American manufacturing should not be a political issue.

My request—my plea—to everyone involved in our political system is this: set scoring political points aside and focus on what is best for the nation as a whole. The current environment must change, or else our nation will become a shadow of what it once was and what it still can and should be.
posted by maudlin at 7:45 PM on August 14 [37 favorites]


*slow clap* from former Intel employee
posted by rodeoclown at 7:57 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


Pretty weaksauce statement, though.
posted by escape from the potato planet at 7:59 PM on August 14 [12 favorites]


A white supremacist killed a girl in Charlottesville.
Fox topics today have included:
- Obama and BLM
- Wright
- Sharia Law
- Farrakhan(!)

2007 called and wants its racist dogwhistles back
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:00 PM on August 14 [57 favorites]


Hair Swap
posted by Room 641-A at 8:06 PM on August 14 [8 favorites]


My request—my plea—to everyone involved in our political system

Ah, yes, Many Sides.
posted by FelliniBlank at 8:07 PM on August 14 [12 favorites]


Pretty weaksauce statement, though.

Yeah, it's pretty much "both sides need to come together". But he's white and circumspect, so he may escape his own personal attack on Twitter in a few hours. Same with the Armour CEO, who didn't, despite the headlines, say anything concrete about Trump or Charlottesville: “Under Armour engages in innovation and sports, not politics. ..." Ken Frazier of Merck was the only one to speak plainly and clearly.
posted by maudlin at 8:09 PM on August 14 [3 favorites]


WaPo -- Analysis: On Twitter, Trump Accuses Blacks of Racism Three Times As Often As Whites

And the whites he accuses of racism include Hillary Clinton, Elizabeth Warren, and David Letterman.
posted by FelliniBlank at 8:17 PM on August 14 [49 favorites]


We are getting to a point where the criminal, insane nature of this prez and his cadre is actually paralyzing the entire executive branch. Maybe federal employees could stage a walkout, or issue a statement of no confidence, or resign en mass? Is there any case where presidential employees resigned in coordinated protest?
posted by vrakatar at 8:21 PM on August 14 [2 favorites]


> We are getting to a point where the criminal, insane nature of this prez and his cadre is actually paralyzing the entire executive branch. Maybe federal employees could stage a walkout, or issue a statement of no confidence, or resign en mass?

I think it's in our best interest to keep as many employees as possible from the pre-Trump era. Civil servants aren't always in a good position to push back on bad policy set by POTUS, but the "deep state" doesn't just include the intelligence community. We've seen glimpses of federal employees trying to resist Trump from folks at the National Parks Serivice, the EPA, The State Department, and many others. I can't blame any of them from deciding they can no longer in good conscience participate, but I do think that any positives associated with a mass resignation would be outweighed by the loss of their experience, and likely replacement by employees more friendly to the Trump agenda.
posted by tonycpsu at 8:34 PM on August 14 [26 favorites]


North Korea backs off Guam missile threat: report (The Hill)

... nobody tell Trump!

seriously, don't tell him
posted by Barack Spinoza at 8:34 PM on August 14 [9 favorites]


So these just happened:

Donald J. Trump Retweeted
Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸
Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸 @JackPosobiec
Meanwhile: 39 shootings in Chicago this weekend, 9 deaths. No national media outrage. Why is that?

Donald J. Trump
Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump
Feels good to be home after seven months, but the White House is very special, there is no place like it... and the U.S. is really my home!
8:06 PM · Aug 14, 201

The US is really his home??
posted by Room 641-A at 8:36 PM on August 14 [28 favorites]


No way he wrote that one himself.
posted by Xyanthilous P. Harrierstick at 8:38 PM on August 14


He called the White House a dump 4 days ago and spent tonight watching birther throwbacks on FOX.
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:39 PM on August 14 [3 favorites]


Holy Shit.

He retweeted another one too

Donald J. Trump Retweeted
Seth Morton 🇺🇸‏ @FiIibuster 5h5 hours ago
More
Replying to @realDonaldTrump
We have a President that is putting the security and prosperity of America first. Thank you, President Trump! #MAGA 🇺🇸
posted by Yowser at 8:42 PM on August 14 [1 favorite]


The US is really his home??

Ok now I kinda want to see his birth certificate.
posted by jason_steakums at 8:44 PM on August 14 [26 favorites]


Donald J. Trump Retweeted
Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸
Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸 @JackPosobiec
Meanwhile: 39 shootings in Chicago this weekend, 9 deaths. No national media outrage. Why is that?


Here's a pic of Posobiec hanging out with Richard Spencer at the RNC.
posted by FelliniBlank at 8:46 PM on August 14 [26 favorites]


The US is really his home??

Birther bat-signal, no?
posted by Barack Spinoza at 8:47 PM on August 14 [7 favorites]


Jack Posobiec is an alt-reicher who pushed PizzaGate and Seth Rich conspiracies, showed up at Trump Tower with a Rape Melania sign to try to get it blamed on Ds, interrupted Shakespeare in the Park, and hung out with Richard Spencer at the RNC.
posted by chris24 at 8:48 PM on August 14 [40 favorites]


Jack Posobiec was the alt-right fuck that showed up with a false flag sign reading "rape Melania" for the inauguration Deploraball.

Just retweeted by the President himself.
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:48 PM on August 14 [37 favorites]


Jack Posobiec was also an employee of coughnotnazidontsuemeezracough Canadian organization Rebel Media (I feel like a broken drum at this point)
posted by Yowser at 8:55 PM on August 14 [3 favorites]


Scaramucci comes out to the sounds of Bohemian Rhapsody and boos: "I'll pretend those are mooches and not boos, Stephen"

Colbert keeps pressing him on why Trump "choked" when it was time to condemn white supremacists. When Scaramucci says Trump did it today, Colbert says "Two days later: does he order his spine on Amazon.com?"

The audience is not loving this guy one bit.
posted by zachlipton at 8:59 PM on August 14 [54 favorites]


Birther bat-signal, no?

Yep. You can either read it as a metaphorical homage to this country, or a slander on Obama. I know what I think.
posted by chris24 at 9:04 PM on August 14 [3 favorites]


Posobiec is also the guy who marched into Comet Pizza with a video camera to "investigate," wandering into a child's birthday party in the back room. He was made to leave with the assistance of the police.
posted by zachlipton at 9:06 PM on August 14 [18 favorites]


So let's recap today:
1 totally grudging, unwilling "racism, not good"
vs.
1 labeling of media as "bad people"
1 personal attack on African American CEO, no comment on white CEOs
1 possible pardon of vicious racist criminal
1 retweet of white supremacist nutjob
1 "Chicago is terrible" comment
1 birther reference

Did I miss anything?
posted by FelliniBlank at 9:13 PM on August 14 [35 favorites]


I think there were 2 retweets of white supremacist nutjobs.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 9:16 PM on August 14 [18 favorites]


The Scramucci interview will presumably be on an internet near you soon enough, but I'd say the main takeaway was him saying that he doesn't think Bannon is a white supremacist, "but I don't like the toleration of it" from the White House.

I can't tell if the guy is angling his way for another political job or is just trying to salvage some semblance of his reputation so he can work in hedge funds again.
posted by zachlipton at 9:17 PM on August 14 [4 favorites]


Did I miss anything?

- Emails detailing his foreign policy team trying to arrange meetings with Russians all the way up to Putin.

- Manafort linked to $850m deal and ongoing multi-million dollar annual payments with Russian oligarch close to Putin and Russian mobster.
posted by chris24 at 9:19 PM on August 14 [17 favorites]


The US is really his home??

I think he means it belongs to him, he owns it.
posted by scalefree at 9:20 PM on August 14 [5 favorites]


So the Posobiec RT is the "don't worry, I'm still your guy" wink to the nazi assholes after the forced denunciation right
posted by prize bull octorok at 9:21 PM on August 14 [30 favorites]


"toleration of" white supremacy is white supremacy. And we're to believe Mooch would've ousted Bannon if he had lasted more than 11 days? If you believe that I have 15 trillion $ of mortgage backed credit default swaps to sell you.
posted by T.D. Strange at 9:24 PM on August 14 [13 favorites]


@djrothkopf: We need to come to grips with the fact that Trump doesn't just play to the fringe or exploit the fringe he is part of the fringe.

This is bugging me, because it's stupid: of course we should have come to grips with this a long time ago, like when he started promoting birtherism perhaps. But replace trump with "the President of the United States" and, yea, it really is something we need to come to grips with. We knew who the man was already, but coming to terms with the fact that this is what the office is now, that's somehow still, inexplicably, a punch to the gut.

It's worth noting, Trump knows how to be proud of what he says and his on-camera performances. He knows how to boast about them. That he's retweeting Posobiec but not tweeting out video of him condemning Nazis says everything.
posted by zachlipton at 9:25 PM on August 14 [42 favorites]


1 possible pardon of vicious racist criminal

What?
posted by Joe in Australia at 9:28 PM on August 14


So let's recap today:

Did I miss anything?


- one day's worth of security detail costs (in NYC: $308,000) (there was a WaPo facebook stream earlier of his return to NYC and avoiding protesters)

1 possible pardon of vicious racist criminal

What?


He's considering pardoning Arpaio (see upthread).
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 9:32 PM on August 14 [4 favorites]


He called the White House a dump 4 days ago

That was 4 days ago?!
$#*%.
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 9:35 PM on August 14 [38 favorites]


That was 4 days ago?!

Well, that's 36 Trumpdays, or the equivalent of 3 Scaramuccis.
posted by mmoncur at 9:43 PM on August 14 [34 favorites]


He called the White House a dump 4 days ago

That was 4 days ago?!
$#*%.


The internet suggests that it was a couple of weeks ago but I honestly had a moment of confused panic.
posted by ActingTheGoat at 9:44 PM on August 14 [19 favorites]


He called the White House a dump 4 days ago
Wait, that's not true. That's impossible.

Dear God.
posted by Yowser at 9:51 PM on August 14 [4 favorites]


We need to come to grips with the fact that Trump doesn't just play to the fringe or exploit the fringe he is part of the fringe.

I feel like we all came to that understanding a year or more ago and everyone else only just seems to be catching up for some weird reason.

Still, maybe the whole thing where trump or the GOP can do weird nazi shit and everyone acts like it just isn't happening has ended? I hope? I mean, i wouldn't want to call it an "upside" as such given the horrors of the last few days but it feels like some corner has been turned, in terms of peoples ability to perceive the threat at least.
posted by Artw at 9:55 PM on August 14 [16 favorites]


Still, maybe the whole thing where trump or the GOP can do weird nazi shit and everyone acts like it just isn't happening has ended?

Like Laura Ingraham's nazi salute at the Republican National Convention.

Totally white washed away.
posted by yesster at 10:08 PM on August 14 [23 favorites]


Still, maybe the whole thing where trump or the GOP can do weird nazi shit and everyone acts like it just isn't happening has ended? I hope? I mean, i wouldn't want to call it an "upside" as such given the horrors of the last few days but it feels like some corner has been turned, in terms of peoples ability to perceive the threat at least.

One of the fun things about this era is finally being able to tell your closeted Nazi acquaintances that they're fucking Nazis.

"You. The things you believe. You did that. Answer for yourself or get out of my sight."
posted by saysthis at 10:09 PM on August 14 [5 favorites]


Totally white washed away.

That was seriously fucking nuts. It was so blatant and there were even people here denying it. I felt like I was in a PKD novel or something.
posted by Artw at 10:11 PM on August 14 [33 favorites]


Camilla: You, sir, should unmask.
Stranger: Indeed?
Cassilda: Indeed, it's time. We have all laid aside disguise but you.
Stranger: I wear no mask.
Camilla: (Terrified, aside to Cassilda.) No mask? No mask!

posted by Artw at 10:14 PM on August 14 [14 favorites]


Mask on
Fuck it, mask off
Mask on
Fuck it, mask off

- Future


But seriously, do we know if any of the "mainstream" GOP are having any kind of self-reckoning here? I mean, McCain and Ryan and even Cruz (who barely counts as mainstream but whatevs) put out some alright statements, contrasting with Trump's. But does anyone know if this is anything more than just empty words? Are any of the mainstream GOP realizing just exactly how okay their colleagues are with racism? Or is there really no way through there?
posted by mhum at 10:20 PM on August 14 [2 favorites]


So it turns out Jack Posobiec is an *active* Naval Officer.

Just in case anyone was worried about Nazis infiltrating your army's command structure or anything.
posted by Yowser at 11:12 PM on August 14 [34 favorites]


The current environment must change, or else our nation will become a shadow of what it once was and what it still can and should be.

#MadeAmericaGoAway
posted by flabdablet at 11:16 PM on August 14 [2 favorites]


So it turns out Jack Posobiec is an *active* Naval Officer.

How would the "rape Melania" thing NOT be a dishonorable discharge???? HOW??
posted by greermahoney at 11:22 PM on August 14 [63 favorites]


That's what a lot of navy types are trying to figure out right now. Turns out what he's been up to might not be strictly speaking, shall we say "conventional" for a naval officer, and it's just now that anyone actually cared who's actually in the navy.

(He has security clearance and is an intel officer, just in case your nightmares of Nazi infiltration aren't intense enough)
posted by Yowser at 11:43 PM on August 14 [37 favorites]


Just in case you're wondering HOW?? , so are they...
posted by Yowser at 11:45 PM on August 14 [18 favorites]


The King in Orange is equally insanity-inducing for an entirely different list of reasons.
posted by Archelaus at 1:44 AM on August 15 [7 favorites]


Just in case you're wondering HOW??

In addition to that, I'm wondering HOW?? many other officers in the military share Posobiec's views, but are not stupid enough to be all over the internet with them?

Trying not to be paranoid... Trying not to be paranoid...
posted by Rykey at 3:29 AM on August 15 [3 favorites]


So it turns out Jack Posobiec is an *active* Naval Officer.

No, he is a serving Naval Reserve officer. Just like Sean Spicer. (And a few MeFites, wink wink.) He is able to make political statements on his own time as long as he does not claim to be representing the Navy when he does so.
posted by Etrigan at 3:58 AM on August 15 [6 favorites]


In addition to that, I'm wondering HOW?? many other officers in the military share Posobiec's views, but are not stupid enough to be all over the internet with them?

Sean Spicer?
posted by fluttering hellfire at 4:01 AM on August 15


But seriously, do we know if any of the "mainstream" GOP are having any kind of self-reckoning here? I mean, McCain and Ryan and even Cruz (who barely counts as mainstream but whatevs) put out some alright statements, contrasting with Trump's. But does anyone know if this is anything more than just empty words? Are any of the mainstream GOP realizing just exactly how okay their colleagues are with racism? Or is there really no way through there?

Well, Brooks wrote a column. I don't know what he means by modesty (he promises a follow-up), but to be fair, he does finally look the beast in the eye. He takes the first step, but fails to recognize that the Republicans depend on manipulating the far right and the crazy Christians for votes, and there is no "modest" way out of that until they dramatically change their politics. Which they won't, because they are beholden to freakishly evil billionaires.
From the article:
Trump gave people a quick pass out of anxiety. Everything could be blamed on foreigners, the idiotic elites. The problems are clear, and the answers are easy. He has loosed a certain style of thinking. The true link between the Trump administration and those pathetic loons in Charlottesville is not just bigotry, but also conspiracy mongering.

In the White House you have pseudo-intellectuals like Steve Bannon who think the world is secretly controlled by the “deep state.” You have memos like the one written by the recently fired Rich Higgins, positing a massive worldwide conspiracy involving the A.C.L.U., the Muslim Brotherhood, the United Nations and global Marxism. The alt-right, which has emerged in support of the Trump administration, is marked by the same conspiratorial epistemology. It provides explanations for complex events that allow its followers to avoid anxiety. The leaders of the alt-right claim to possess superior understanding that pierces through the myths that blind common mortals.

The world is secretly controlled by the globalists. The Sandy Hook school shooting never happened. There’s a child abuse ring run by Clintonites out of a pizzeria in Northwest D.C. All the ambiguities of life can be explained by pointing to the malevolent webs of secret power that only you — you precious, superior few — can see and understand.

From here it’s a short leap to those losers in Charlottesville. If the alt-right thinks the globalists secretly and malevolently control society, the neo-Nazis go back to the original version and believe that a conspiracy of Jewish bankers does. For them, tribalism is not only a way to feel some vestige of pride in their own lonely selves, it’s also an explanatory tool. The world can be a bewildering place, but not if you see it as a righteous war between whites and blacks, between straights and gays. The neo-Nazis are not the first group to discover that war is a force that can give an empty life meaning, even a race war.

The age of anxiety inevitably leads to an age of fanaticism, as people seek crude palliatives for the dizziness of freedom. I’m beginning to think the whole depressing spectacle of this moment — the Trump presidency and beyond — is caused by a breakdown of intellectual virtue, a breakdown in America’s ability to face evidence objectively, to pay due respect to reality, to deal with complex and unpleasant truths. The intellectual virtues may seem elitist, but once a country tolerates dishonesty, incuriosity and intellectual laziness, then everything else falls apart.
posted by mumimor at 4:04 AM on August 15 [13 favorites]


But who is the audience for people like David Brooks these days? Doesn't he primarily function as the NYT's token right-winger?

The GOP has been almost completely taken over by conspiracists and extremists. The whole Weekly Standard flavor of American conservatism just seems laughably anachronistic today - a bunch of fogies talking about a landscape that hasn't existed for a long, long time. I'd love to be wrong, but it seems like the time to address this cancer in their party was, oh, at least twenty years ago.
posted by escape from the potato planet at 4:32 AM on August 15 [31 favorites]


Weird. Trump just retweeted what I can only assume was a Russian bot and then deleted the retweet. Guess someone noticed the bot's pinned tweet was an insanely offensive meme about Islam.
posted by Room 101 at 4:39 AM on August 15 [11 favorites]


From above: WaPo -- Analysis: On Twitter, Trump Accuses Blacks of Racism Three Times As Often As Whites.

I just wanted to point out that I scooped The Washington Post on this.

At the time I wrote this, those whom Trump called racist were black, Jewish, or female. Letterman (whom I did not include) was said to have made a racist remark.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 4:43 AM on August 15 [10 favorites]


Slate has a late night monologue roundup (with transcripts; this is not something you'd need a TV to understand); even Fallon came out swinging.
posted by uncleozzy at 4:48 AM on August 15 [18 favorites]


Presidential. (And now deleted)

@kylegriffin1: (MSNBC)
Trump RT'd this pic showing a CNN journalist hit by a train days after a white nationalist ran his car into activists, killed Heather Heyer.

IMAGE
posted by chris24 at 4:51 AM on August 15 [37 favorites]


For the second time in a little over a month, somebody has used a rock to smash one of the panels in Boston's Holocaust Memorial

An actual Night of Broken Glass is a little too on-the-nose, 2017.
posted by zombieflanders at 4:56 AM on August 15 [28 favorites]


Doesn't he primarily function as the NYT's token right-winger?

Ross Douthat.
Bret Stephens.
posted by zarq at 5:05 AM on August 15 [3 favorites]


I believe Brooks holds the Murray Chair in the NYT's storied Race Science department.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 5:16 AM on August 15 [7 favorites]


And the man has nukes.

@ditzkoff: (NYT)
since last night the president has RT'd
- a conspiracy theorist
- trump train hitting CNN (deleted)
- critic calling him a fascist (unRT'd)
[Screenshots]
posted by chris24 at 5:22 AM on August 15 [16 favorites]


The Latest: Trump asked to fire 3 White House staffers (AP)
The leaders of four minority House caucus groups have written a letter to President Donald Trump calling for the removal of White House staff aides Steve Bannon, Stephen Miller and Sebastian Gorka
No cash for hate, say mainstream crowdfunding firms (Reuters/Raw Story)

Pete Souza lands a punch.

Birther bat-signal, no?

That was my first thought, but it's so stupid. He never accused Obama of not living in the US; the US was obviously his home. Or he meant the White House and got confused. It makes no sen-- oh. Never mind.posted by Room 641-A at 5:38 AM on August 15 [13 favorites]


It looks like the President can pardon criminal contempt, which is what Arpaio was convicted of.

DOJ PARDON INFORMATION AND INSTRUCTIONS

3. Five-year waiting period required

Under the Department's rules governing petitions for executive clemency, 28 C.F.R. §§ 1.1 et seq., an applicant must satisfy a minimum waiting period of five years before he becomes eligible to apply for a presidential pardon of his federal conviction. The waiting period, which is designed to afford the petitioner a reasonable period of time in which to demonstrate an ability to lead a responsible, productive and law-abiding life, begins on the date of the petitioner's release from confinement. Alternatively, if the conviction resulted in a sentence that did not include any form of confinement, including community or home confinement, the waiting period begins on the date of sentencing. In addition, the petitioner should have fully satisfied the penalty imposed, including all probation, parole, or supervised release before applying for clemency. Moreover, the waiting period begins upon release from confinement for your most recent conviction, whether or not this is the offense for which pardon is sought. You may make a written request for a waiver of this requirement. However, waiver of any portion of the waiting period is rarely granted and then only in the most exceptional circumstances. In order to request a waiver, you must complete the pardon application form and submit it with a cover letter explaining why you believe the waiting period should be waived in your case.

(Emphasis mine)
posted by Room 641-A at 5:57 AM on August 15 [11 favorites]




That was my first thought, but it's so stupid.

...and?
posted by thelonius at 6:01 AM on August 15 [2 favorites]


Going fast now isn't it.
US government demands details on all visitors to anti-Trump protest website, whilest there is The Dangerous Politicization of the Military.
The FBI has been quietly investigating White Supremecist infiltration of Law enforcement.
As far back as 2012 Reuters was reporting U.S. Army battling racists within its own ranks.
posted by adamvasco at 6:06 AM on August 15 [25 favorites]


That's if Arpaio applies for clemency. But why should such a Great American have to formally apply?
posted by delfin at 6:07 AM on August 15 [6 favorites]


DOJ demands identifying information of visitors to anti-Trump website

Dreamhost might not be the best web host, but they're pretty cheap, and they're standing up to this nonsense, so good on them.
posted by uncleozzy at 6:12 AM on August 15 [18 favorites]


DOJ demands identifying information of visitors to anti-Trump website

This includes “names, addresses, telephone numbers and other identifiers, e-mail addresses, business information, the length of service (including start date), means and source of payment for services (including any credit card or bank account number), and information about any domain name registration.”
posted by Room 641-A at 6:18 AM on August 15 [14 favorites]


Rules Governing Petitions for Executive Clemency
Standards for Consideration of Clemency Petitions


As Delfin points out, those are the DOJ's rules for people who are asking for pardon/commutation. There are no such limits on the power the constitution extends to the president.
The President...shall have Power to grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offences against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment.
At absolute best there might be processing limits/guidance for what happens after he grants, but even then I suspect that the Supreme Court would (rightly, sadly) say that such stuff is irrelevant - a person is pardoned the moment the President signs the paper.

from James Pfiffner, Professor of Public Policy at George Mason University:
The scope of the pardon power remains quite broad, almost plenary. As Justice Stephen Field wrote in Ex parte Garland (1867), "If granted before conviction, it prevents any of the penalties and disabilities consequent upon conviction from attaching [thereto]; if granted after conviction, it removes the penalties and disabilities, and restores him to all his civil rights; it makes him, as it were, a new man, and gives him a new credit and capacity....A pardon reaches both the punishment prescribed for the offence and the guilt of the offender....so that in the eye of the law the offender is as innocent as if he had never committed the offence." A pardon is valid whether accepted or not, because its purposes are primarily public. It is an official act. According to United States v. Klein (1871), Congress cannot limit the President's grant of an amnesty or pardon, but it can grant other or further amnesties itself. Though pardons have been litigated, the Court has consistently refused to limit the President's discretion.
posted by phearlez at 6:21 AM on August 15 [3 favorites]


Dreamhosts's Opposition Motion is great reading.
posted by mikelieman at 6:25 AM on August 15 [15 favorites]


So, Sessions crowning legal achievement this will be to royally fuck anyone swept up in the Inauguration Day protests. Good job, Jeffy B.
posted by Burhanistan at 6:38 AM on August 15 [6 favorites]


Well, he probably would have ignored those guideline anyway. Asshole.
posted by Room 641-A at 6:39 AM on August 15


Someone could probably make a post about this.

A Top Lawyer Asks Supreme Court To Hear A Major Death Penalty Case
In a new filing, Neal Katyal is asking the high court to consider Arizona’s death penalty law — and whether the death penalty itself is unconstitutional (Chris Geidner, BuzzFeed News)
WASHINGTON — One of the country’s top lawyers is asking the Supreme Court to take up a case that could reshape — or even end — the death penalty in America.

The aggressive filing comes as the Supreme Court is already set to hear a high-profile series of cases.

An Arizona death row inmate, Abel Daniel Hidalgo, has been arguing for the past three years that the state’s death penalty law is unconstitutional because it doesn’t do enough to narrow who is eligible for the death penalty, among those convicted of murder.

Earlier this year, Neal Katyal, best known these days for serving as the lead lawyer for Hawaii’s challenge to President Trump’s travel ban, agreed to serve as Hidalgo’s lawyer at the Supreme Court.
posted by Room 641-A at 7:00 AM on August 15 [11 favorites]


For me (and I imagine a few of you were ahead of me on the learning curve), I've just come to the realization that Trump is a white supremacist.

Before that I would have said he is a racist - and I still held on to the possibility that he is just evil and using race to divide people while not personally racist.

But now, all of the recent events say to me, he doesn't just use white supremacists: he is one. I suspect his father with a KKK perspective raised him that way.

It is somewhat the same with his intelligence. I would have said eight months ago that he says stupid things. And now I fully believe he is just stupid and seemingly incapable of being smart. (Seminal moments: the digital catapults and the transcript of his talk with the Australian prime minister)

Remember when there was the notion that maybe Trump would be a wild card in terms of conservative / liberal? All of his choices have been reactionary.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 7:06 AM on August 15 [61 favorites]


FWIW I hate being right.
posted by Artw at 7:13 AM on August 15 [12 favorites]


I’m beginning to think the whole depressing spectacle of this moment — the Trump presidency and beyond — is caused by a breakdown of intellectual virtue, a breakdown in America’s ability to face evidence objectively, to pay due respect to reality, to deal with complex and unpleasant truths. The intellectual virtues may seem elitist, but once a country tolerates dishonesty, incuriosity and intellectual laziness, then everything else falls apart.

It's a sign that there is no heaven and all the demons are here that David Brooks wrote this without the words themselves squealing in protest at the injustice of David Brooks accusing America of tolerating people like David Brooks.

The fact that his publisher put that in the paper without so much as an editorial note is somehow even worse.
posted by Merus at 7:18 AM on August 15 [12 favorites]


I’m beginning to think the whole depressing spectacle of this moment — the Trump presidency and beyond — is caused by a breakdown of intellectual virtue, a breakdown in America’s ability to face evidence objectively, to pay due respect to reality, to deal with complex and unpleasant truths. The intellectual virtues may seem elitist, but once a country tolerates dishonesty, incuriosity and intellectual laziness, then everything else falls apart.

With due respect to our broader-minded Christian friends, I think this started with our desire to be patient with and inclusive of fundamentalists whose views flew in the face of facts, science, and measurable data. We "respected their beliefs" by letting them "have their own facts" and that particular breed of stupid spread through conservatism like kudzu on an abandoned Mississippi gas station.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 7:21 AM on August 15 [50 favorites]


Trump's father raised him on "racehorse theory." Racehorse theory is identical to eugenics. Which is why I am not surprised that he retweeted that Trump Train photo. The originator of that image calls Wolf Blitzer "CNN's Zionist Agent." That's pretty much all you need to know about the kind of people who impress DJT. If I didn't already know racists who have blended families I would be shocked, but now I just accept that people can compartmentalize just about anything if it protects them from discomfort.

I feel like I live in a vat of cortisol.
posted by xyzzy at 7:24 AM on August 15 [64 favorites]


The middle-of-the-road media outlets are partly to blame for this last week too, as their insistence to treat whether Trump is racist as a matter open to interpretation gives latitude to the worst fucking people.

Is he racist? Well, he says racist things, does racist things, has been sued for racism, is the son of a Klansman, got to office by promising racist policies, is working with racists to enact said racist policies, is overwhelmingly seen as racist by people of color, and is constantly congratulated by self-proclaimed racists for how fucking good he is at racism.

I don't think you need an ace investigative team to crack this particular fucking story, CNN. Say the fucking word.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 7:25 AM on August 15 [152 favorites]


> But now, all of the recent events say to me, he doesn't just use white supremacists: he is one. I suspect his father with a KKK perspective raised him that way.


I have been wondering how much evidence of his involvement with orgs like the KKK is going to come out in the wash. And whether things like his ad about the Central Park Five, and involvement with the Birther movement were him acting as in the role of the legitimate-businessman-wing of far right mafia families.

There's certainly a fair amount of evidence that he's reading various far right sites/commentators, including for e.g. re-posting a smug pepe meme (doing the OK sign that may or may not be a white power hand gesture [it started out as an "ironic" troll, but seems to be in genuine use now] { I looked it up because apparently Trump was making it during his eventual disavowel of the KKK/Nazis }).

There's also his obsession with his superior German genes.
posted by Buntix at 7:31 AM on August 15 [4 favorites]


sometimes I feel like we're all being punished by some God thing who is all, want to see what happens when you elect a racist demagogue, here you go, and we get a year of this and wake up on the morning of 11/8, cold and sweaty
posted by angrycat at 7:32 AM on August 15 [6 favorites]


Sebastian Gorka's wife apparently was the animating force behind the decision to withdraw Life After Hate's $400,000 grant from Obama. According to the co-founder, Life After Hate is one of two major organizations that work on race hatred in America. The other is the FBI.

And in case anyone is still hoping that Kelly might be one of the good guys:
Once Trump entered the White House in January, the office of then-DHS Secretary John Kelly ordered a full review of the Countering Violent Extremism program. Kelly’s office wanted to re-vet the groups receiving a portion of the $10 million Congress had appropriated for the program — even though DHS had already publicly announced the grant recipients.
So. There's that.
posted by xyzzy at 7:58 AM on August 15 [38 favorites]


Kelly may be one of the adults, but he's definitely not one of the good guys.
posted by TwoWordReview at 8:12 AM on August 15 [19 favorites]


sometimes I feel like we're all being punished by some God thing who is all, want to see what happens when you elect a racist demagogue, here you go, and we get a year of this and wake up on the morning of 11/8, cold and sweaty

Days before the election I had a conversation about the stupid wall and how there was no way he was going to be able to start building his stupid wall after being sworn in. Moot anyways I said cause Hillary is likely going to win. But hey in my dream world I could 'save game', see what happens when he's elected and how he isn't going to be building the stupid wall, see how big of a fuck up he is and then after six months just reload and get on with real life. Ha ha

I am haunted by this.
posted by Jalliah at 8:15 AM on August 15 [18 favorites]


So it turns out Jack Posobiec is an *active* Naval Officer.

No, he is a serving Naval Reserve officer. Just like Sean Spicer. (And a few MeFites, wink wink.) He is able to make political statements on his own time as long as he does not claim to be representing the Navy when he does so.


Still defies understanding how he hasn't been thrown the fuck out, though. Being caught in public wearing a shirt advocating rape--of anyone, much less the first lady--ought to be a one-way ticket to "conduct unbecoming."
posted by scaryblackdeath at 8:15 AM on August 15 [24 favorites]


I think maybe a certain amount of mythologizing around the military may have given rise to unrealistic expectations.
posted by Artw at 8:22 AM on August 15 [8 favorites]


If they say that calling for someone to be raped IOKIYAC, then does that mean that American conservatism now guides itself by the same moral compass as villages in the mountainous Taliban-ruled hinterland of Pakistan?
posted by acb at 8:25 AM on August 15


The bigger implication of all the alt-right re-tweets, which kills me the media doesn't directly focus on, is why is trump seeing them in the first place? I think at first it was (barely) plausible that he was searching for positive tweets about himself, or someone showed him a tweet he enjoyed (think back to the excuses after the hilary-star of david spectacle). But this has been going on for well over a year. Literally impossible to state that he is randomly seeing these tweets, it is blatantly clear that his twitter feed is made up of alt-right trolls.

So, the media is clear about calling out the alt-right for what it is. Racist, backwards, wrong etc. No leniency or shades of grey like other conservative movements (tea party), the alt right is entirely racist and in the wrong.

Trump consistently retweets things from the alt-right.

Trump claims that he is not a racist.

We need these dots clearly connected to show the logical fallacy at play here. It is disgusting he is getting away with these continued winks and nods because they are exactly that, not official statements open to more intense scrunity. Every white supremacist and neo-nazi 100% gets what trump is doing with these re-tweets. It was bad enough after the fake apology yesterday, which I'm sure many on the alt-right already saw as the "forced statement" that it was. But then he immediately goes around and throws some more red meat on the KKK grill? Directly contradicting what he said yesterday?

25th amendment NOW.
posted by andruwjones26 at 8:25 AM on August 15 [40 favorites]


I think maybe a certain amount of mythologizing around the military may have given rise to unrealistic expectations.

Egypt and Pakistan nod their heads in recognition of this problem.
posted by rc3spencer at 8:26 AM on August 15 [5 favorites]


If they say that calling for someone to be raped IOKIYAC, then does that mean that American conservatism now guides itself by the same moral compass as villages in the mountainous Taliban-ruled hinterland of Pakistan?

Extremists gonna extreme
posted by BentFranklin at 8:26 AM on August 15


re consumer activism, I thought this thread from Ben Wikler (MoveOn) was interesting:
1) A few years ago, a former staffer from a top-tier int'l PR firm walked me through how corporations monitor social media for brand risk.
2) Big corporations shell out serious $$ for social media monitoring and threat assessment of their brands & CEOs, and get frequent reports.
3) My friend had been in charge of compiling those reports. Her team would track mentions of a firm, its products, its execs: quantity, tone
4) The particular issue that companies want to assess is whether things are spinning out of control. So velocity and acceleration are key.
5) The reports would show graphs of mentions/social reach/RTs over time; screenshots of images & messages. Anything quantifiable or visual
6) If an online petition targeted a company, they'd check at regular intervals to see how fast it was growing
7) The goal was to forestall an emergency that could lead to brand collapse. If necessary, action would be recommended to stem bleeding.
8) Chief Marketing Officers and CEOs could be reached at short notice & decisions could be made quickly if things were threatening to blow.
9) The most acute crises came when companies were doing something wrong that was being pointed out publicly, repeatedly. Brand disaster.
10) In those cases, companies had to decide whether to try to stonewall & wait out storm or do the right thing & make problem disappear ASAP
11) So a big part of assessment within a company was always: how fast will people move on? How much brand damage do we incur in meantime?
12) So the question for activists is: how long can you go? How much can you escalate pressure? If company thinks you won't stop, it'll fold.
13) We're now in a time when many big companies face clear choices between right and wrong. Public will call on them to do the right thing.
14) If you're a corporate decision-maker, you should consult your conscience. But also, consider your bottom line. The public is watching.
15) If you're a consumer, this is your time to remember that you also have power. Not just your wallet. Your voice. Ask companies to choose.
16) Your power is a function of your ability to build pressure, to recruit, to escalate—and to not give up.
17) As my PR firm source explained to me, if you're a consumer activist, your actions will count, because they'll be counted. Literally.
posted by lalex at 8:38 AM on August 15 [72 favorites]


I think maybe a certain amount of mythologizing around the military may have given rise to unrealistic expectations.

It's not so much that as the fact I've seen people thrown out on their ass for far less. But mileage always varies and I don't know who is in this asshole's chain of command. Probably a whole lot of other people the Navy could do well without, too.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 8:41 AM on August 15


I was just reading that twitter thread, and after following some of the comment rabbit hole discovered that the AFL-CIO is "re-evaluating" their presence on the CEO council.
posted by xyzzy at 8:44 AM on August 15 [5 favorites]


Trump on David Duke (who he "does not know about") then and now (NBC News)

Hallie Jackson (MSNBC) So why is Trump [doing thing]?
Michael Steel (Former RNC Chair): Who the hell knows?
posted by Room 641-A at 8:47 AM on August 15 [4 favorites]


Huh, here's another pretty notable announcement video for a first-time Democratic candidate, this one running for a congressional seat in Staten Island. He served in the Army, boxed professionally, and struggled with opiods. "They say when one person gets sick on an island, the whole island gets sick." Meet Boyd Nelson.
posted by lalex at 8:49 AM on August 15 [4 favorites]




Another CEO resignation from the council

Between this and the thread-tweet above, finally feeling optimistic about the direction this week is heading
posted by andruwjones26 at 8:50 AM on August 15 [25 favorites]


Scott Paul, the president of the Alliance for American Manufacturing, is resigning from Trump's Manufacturing Council.
posted by lalex at 8:53 AM on August 15 [33 favorites]


I'd really love to see everyone drop out. Boeing's CEO in particular, though given how dependent they are on government contracts I can't imagine him leaving unless he and Lockheed's CEO decided to drop out together.

What a great thing that would be. Not something to realistically expect, but I can dream.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 8:53 AM on August 15 [2 favorites]


I'd really love to see everyone drop out.

I saw a useful comment on Twitter last night: You do not want to be the last CEO on Trump's manufacturing council.
posted by suelac at 8:55 AM on August 15 [76 favorites]


Turns out Scott Paul dropped out 16 minutes after Trump called the other pullouts "grandstanders" on Twitter.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 8:56 AM on August 15 [22 favorites]


Everyone will not drop out, but I am excited that this most recent announcement happened less than 30 minutes after the president* got on twitter to bully the rest of them into staying and brag about how many more people were ready to join up for every CEO that steps down. Its the start of business culture realizing that the word of the white house doesn't mean shit anymore (as will be evidenced by the fact that the replacements will be slow to come and of a decidedly lower caliber than the 'big names' they are replacing).
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 8:57 AM on August 15 [25 favorites]


Its the start of business culture realizing that the word of the white house doesn't mean shit anymore

Also they are finally twigging to being associated with Trump is toxic to their brands.
posted by fluttering hellfire at 9:00 AM on August 15 [21 favorites]


Given the ineffectiveness of the administration, was this council actually going to get anything done? Could these guys leaving set up their own council and advise the Senate instead?
posted by like_neon at 9:03 AM on August 15 [4 favorites]


Discord shut down the altright.com discord server (link is to twitter announcement) as well as accounts associated with the CVille white supremacist protests.
posted by xyzzy at 9:07 AM on August 15 [12 favorites]


The CSPAN Trump Tower lobbycam is back up.

Took a peek and am re-reminded of an observation Ian Hilsop made on Have I Got News For You - he was remarking on that famous photo of Trump with Nigel Farage and described Trump Towers' decor style as "Late Qaddafi".
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 9:08 AM on August 15 [18 favorites]


well, donnie, we could argue all day whether you were legitimately elected to be our leader

it's getting to the point where it doesn't matter

you can't be our leader if so many people won't follow you - not just me - people you recruited and actually placed faith in are quitting you
posted by pyramid termite at 9:10 AM on August 15 [3 favorites]


In case you thought GOP "moderates" were sane.

@GovernorPataki:
Kid Rock is exactly the kind of candidate the GOP needs right now. #KidRockForSenate @KidRock
http://loudwire.com/kid-rock-senate-run-nod-of-support-republican-super-pac/
posted by chris24 at 9:10 AM on August 15 [11 favorites]


Thank you @realDonaldTrump for calling to Love thy neighbor, value equality, & calling evil by name.

Marc Benioff of Salesforce with a seemingly high praise response to Trump's limp late and ludicrous call out to "criticize" the fascists.
posted by njohnson23 at 9:10 AM on August 15 [2 favorites]


I always knew enterprise software was against us.
posted by Artw at 9:14 AM on August 15 [30 favorites]


Marc Benioff of Salesforce with a seemingly high praise response to Trump's limp late and ludicrous call out to "criticize" the fascists

As if I needed another reason to hate that company, after watching what they're doing to the San Francisco skyline...
posted by suelac at 9:14 AM on August 15 [9 favorites]


LOL

Pence "not aware" of any Russian collusion with Trump campaign (Emily Tillet, CBS News)
Vice President Mike Pence says he "never witnessed" any evidence of collusion between the Russian government and Trump campaign officials during the 2016 campaign, and reaffirmed his commitment to cooperating with the special counsel's investigation into Russian election interference and possible Russian ties to the Trump organization.

During his visit to a Christian mission in Cartagena, Colombia on Monday, Pence told reporters "during all of my experience on the campaign, I never witnessed any evidence of collusion or any of the allegations, I'm not aware of that ever having occurred."
Deadly rally accelerates removal of Confederate statues (Jesse J. Holland, AP)
In Gainesville, Florida, workers hired by the Daughters of the Confederacy chipped away at a Confederate soldier’s statue, loaded it quietly on a truck and drove away with little fanfare.

In Baltimore, Mayor Catherine Pugh said she’s ready to tear down all of her city’s Confederate statues, and the city council voted to have them destroyed. San Antonio lawmakers are looking ahead to removing a statue that many people wrongly assumed represented a famed Texas leader who died at the Alamo.
Richard W. Painter @RWPUSA
Texas size big government regulates insurance to circumvent the constitution and impose zealots' views on everyone?
Texas Measure Would Restrict Insurance Coverage For Abortions
npr.org
posted by Room 641-A at 9:18 AM on August 15 [18 favorites]


Kid Rock is exactly the kind of candidate the GOP needs right now. #KidRockForSenate @KidRock

I've noticed some trolly (but seemingly belonging to actual flesh people) Facebook profiles posting Kid Rock songs lately. "Po-Dunk" (a song I have never heard and hope to avoid forever) is popular among this set.

It's an interesting line of propaganda/memecraft, and so consistent among all these right-wingers who've commented on NYT and local news articles about Charlottesville and Durham.
posted by witchen at 9:19 AM on August 15 [3 favorites]


@GovernorPataki: Kid Rock is exactly the kind of candidate the GOP needs right now. #KidRockForSenate @KidRock

desperately seeking relevancy...
posted by lalex at 9:21 AM on August 15 [4 favorites]


Business Insider has a list of who has left and who has said they will stay on the council. The AFL-CIO has a rep on the council, and a suspect it's a tough decision for them. I'm sure they'd love to bail, but they'd lose any input into policy decisions made there.
posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 9:22 AM on August 15 [2 favorites]


12) So the question for activists is: how long can you go? How much can you escalate pressure? If company thinks you won't stop, it'll fold.

Whether or not that happens truly depends on the company. Some companies will pay attention. Some won't. There will also be CEOs who feel that taking a stand is more important than pressure from their customers. We've seen this a bit recently from overtly Christian company owners and CEOs like Dan Cathy of Chick-fil-A.
posted by zarq at 9:23 AM on August 15 [3 favorites]



Thank you @realDonaldTrump for calling to Love thy neighbor, value equality, & calling evil by name.

Marc Benioff of Salesforce with a seemingly high praise response to Trump's limp late and ludicrous call out to "criticize" the fascists.


Welp that just made a decision easier. I will not be recommending salesforce to a client. It was on a shortlist. I know their general political and social stances so this wont be an issue.
Will also make sure to send a message to Salesforce and let them know they lost some business.
posted by Jalliah at 9:23 AM on August 15 [50 favorites]


Sorry. I realized after I clicked post that it sounds like I'm pouring cold water on the idea that activism can be effective. More often than not, putting pressure on a company or a show's advertisers does work. It's a good tactic.

But it's not a slam dunk that even a tremendous amount of pressure will shift a company's course.
posted by zarq at 9:25 AM on August 15 [1 favorite]



Thank you @realDonaldTrump for calling to Love thy neighbor, value equality, & calling evil by name.


< /sarcasm>

R-right?
posted by xigxag at 9:31 AM on August 15 [1 favorite]


Personally, I don't think any CEOs should have to leave a council that is not actively engaged in furthering white supremacy. There are certainly still issues between industry and government that need attention. They could stay on, and condemn racism, and hopefully condemn Trump, and I'd be fine with that.
posted by BentFranklin at 9:36 AM on August 15


Lie down with dogs, wake up with rabies.
posted by Celsius1414 at 9:40 AM on August 15 [12 favorites]


And every one of the policies that comes out of that group will favor rich, white men a d a few rich, white women.

There is no tempering Trump.
posted by Room 641-A at 9:44 AM on August 15 [5 favorites]


Personally, I don't think any CEOs should have to leave a council that is not actively engaged in furthering white supremacy.

Good news! These councils are actively engaged in furthering white supremacy by supporting a white supremacist administration and the white supremacist policies the administration proposes. Therefore, leaving said councils is critical.
posted by Existential Dread at 9:45 AM on August 15 [72 favorites]


Personally, I don't think any CEOs should have to leave a council that is not actively engaged in furthering white supremacy. There are certainly still issues between industry and government that need attention. They could stay on, and condemn racism, and hopefully condemn Trump, and I'd be fine with that.

You can't influence Trump, you only validate him.

Rejection is the best option.
posted by chris24 at 9:46 AM on August 15 [60 favorites]


They could stay on, and condemn racism, and hopefully condemn Trump, and I'd be fine with that.
Those who've resigned have specifically stated that it's impossible to complete important work in an environment of chaos and inequality. They're basically saying that there's no point in putting up a building while the one next door is burning down.
posted by xyzzy at 9:50 AM on August 15 [13 favorites]


They could stay on, and condemn racism, and hopefully condemn Trump, and I'd be fine with that.

Like how they can also pray for people, keep them in their thoughts, and spread positivity?

Has *anyone* been successful at influencing Trump to show a modicum of sanity or dignity? How could anyone in this council expect to have that type of influence on him when anyone who has tried to in the past has been publicly vilified by Trump himself?
posted by like_neon at 9:54 AM on August 15 [11 favorites]


Another Nazi Got Fired (Drew Salisbury, Death and Taxes)
A Ridgeville, South Carolina, white supremacist who was photographed standing next to accused murderer James Alex Fields Jr. at Saturday’s neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, has been fired from his job. As of Monday afternoon, Nigel Krofta was no longer employed at Limehouse and Sons Construction, where he worked as a welder, after the company received a barrage of criticism from local residents.
Bay Area sheriff’s department retweeted a Richard Spencer video, calls it ‘accidental’ (Tim Donnally, Death and Taxes)
It is starting to become apparent that Twitter dot com may be a terrible thing. We’re forced to watch the president of the United States fumble around on it every day in between picking petty personal battles. And we’re also forced to determine whether a sheriff’s office in California retweeting of a white supremacist video was “accidental” or some coded message, because both seem totally feasible these days!
posted by Room 641-A at 10:01 AM on August 15 [24 favorites]


> There are certainly still issues between industry and government that need attention.

Between industry and *this* government, though? Trump's greatest contribution to American manufacturing since becoming President was "saving" a few jobs at a Carrier plant for a few months until the next round of layoffs. He's engaging in open warfare with his own party's leaders in Congress, and has no viable path to getting anything done unless it satisfies the most right-wing members of his party. How is this council worth preserving when it's already been shown that CEOs leaving it is having an impact?
posted by tonycpsu at 10:03 AM on August 15 [5 favorites]


In re Charlottesville: Why weren't there police cars blocking the streets?
posted by ZenMasterThis at 10:10 AM on August 15 [1 favorite]


Hello, old friend. The CSPAN Trump Tower lobbycam is back up.

I started watching this, and thought "why am I watching this," and then on cue they rolled out a podium.
posted by theodolite at 10:14 AM on August 15 [3 favorites]


It is starting to become apparent that Twitter dot com may be a terrible thing.

Opus has the right idea.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 10:18 AM on August 15 [16 favorites]


James Hohmann with Breanne Deppisch and Joanie Greve/Washington Post's Daily 202 column:

Trump acts like the president of the Red States of America
THE BIG IDEA: Donald Trump often behaves, first and foremost, as if he is the president of the states and people who voted for him.

That’s at odds with the American tradition, and it’s problematic as a governing philosophy — especially in a moment of crisis. Trump’s initially tone-deaf response to Charlottesville underscores why.

Animated by grievance and congenitally disinclined to extend olive branches, Trump lashes out at his “enemies” — his 2020 reelection campaign even used that word in a commercial released on Sunday — while remaining reticent to explicitly call out his fans — no matter how odious, extreme or violent.

...

One of the difficult but primary duties of the modern presidency is to speak for the nation in times of tragedy,” Michael Gerson, a speechwriter for George W. Bush, wrote in a column this weekend. “It falls to the president to express something of the nation’s soul — grief for the lost, sympathy for the suffering, moral clarity in the midst of confusion, confidence in the unknowable purposes of God. Not every president does this equally well. But none have been incapable. Until Donald Trump.

“The president is confident that his lazy musings are equal to history. They are not,” Gerson continues. “Trump could offer no context for this latest conflict. No inspiring ideals from the author of the Declaration of Independence, who called Charlottesville home. No healing words from the president who was killed by a white supremacist. By his flat, foolish utterance, Trump proved once again that he has no place in the company of these leaders.”
posted by ZeusHumms at 10:23 AM on August 15 [64 favorites]


Trump acts like the president of the Red States of America

He is. Trump and the entire Republican party have made it explicitly clear that they have no intention or desire to even hear Democratic voters or elected politician speak. much less work with them on policy. They did not allow a single Democratic congressman to read the Trumpcare bills. They allowed no amendments. They have said they will follow the same plan with tax "reform". Their entire agenda is solely dedicated to undoing everything that Obama approved of, or even looks or sounds vaguely liberal. The changed the very rules of the Senate to steal a Supreme Court seat from a democratic President with no Democratic votes. Their propaganda arms in hate radio and FOX News daily declare Democrats and Liberals enemies of America. Trump has not set foot in a blue state since his election, outside of properties he owns.

Republicans are already waging a cold civil war against Blue states.
posted by T.D. Strange at 10:29 AM on August 15 [112 favorites]


Lie down with dogs, wake up with rabies.

Rabies like skunks have?
posted by rough ashlar at 10:30 AM on August 15


Pretty easy to not accidentally retweet nazis if you don't follow any nazis.
posted by Artw at 10:31 AM on August 15 [63 favorites]


That's what gets me. You have to search for Nazis to follow to accidentally retweet them. I have tiny hands and thick thumbs and I've managed to a) not retweet a Nazi b) never see Nazi stuff since *I DON'T FOLLOW THEM*. This feels like gaslighting.
posted by kanata at 10:37 AM on August 15 [18 favorites]


I have tiny hands

Mr. President?
posted by Faint of Butt at 10:40 AM on August 15 [6 favorites]


Let's not make lazy bullshit lying denials out to be more than it is by calling it gaslighting.
posted by phearlez at 10:43 AM on August 15 [3 favorites]


but they'd lose any input into policy decisions made there.

You think any policy decisions are made there? Plausible, maybe. That room represents a lot of money. On the other hand, Trump.
posted by ctmf at 10:52 AM on August 15


A little background on statues of Confederate generals. Most famous Confederate generals were active-duty officers in the United States Army that violated their oath of office to "support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic." You know, traitors.

Robert E. Lee, Jeb Stuart, James Longstreet, George Pickett, Albert Sidney Johnston, A.P. Hill, Richard Ewell, Joseph Johnston, Kirby Smith, John Bell Hood, Barnard Bee, Lewis Armistead, and Porter Alexander were all active-duty officers in the US Army who resigned their commissions to fight against the United States. About 300 other active-duty army or navy officers also resigned and joined the Confederacy.

Stonewall Jackson, Braxton Bragg, P.G.T. Beauregard, and Jubal Early were all US Army veterans.
posted by kirkaracha at 10:52 AM on August 15 [24 favorites]


And here I thought Jubal Early was an operative for the Alliance.
posted by Autumnheart at 10:59 AM on August 15 [11 favorites]


Yes, and a raging, unrepentant Confederate asshole.

Also, a fairly sweet horse my dad named.
posted by teleri025 at 11:04 AM on August 15


That's what gets me. You have to search for Nazis to follow to accidentally retweet them. I have tiny hands and thick thumbs and I've managed to a) not retweet a Nazi b) never see Nazi stuff since *I DON'T FOLLOW THEM*. This feels like gaslighting.

Trump gets a daily propaganda document of people praising him & agreeing with him on the subjects of the day. That's going to strongly correlate with Nazis & racists through self-selection. What's important is their agreement & praise to bolster Trump. What's not important is anything that would disqualify them from inclusion in the daily propaganda document because then there would be less praise.
posted by scalefree at 11:13 AM on August 15 [16 favorites]


This is interesting: a twitter feed curated by CNN politics that follows only the accounts followed by trump.
In other words, now you can see exactly what he's seeing anytime he browses his twitter feed. (Hint: it's mostly FoxNews propaganda. )
posted by Atom Eyes at 11:20 AM on August 15 [44 favorites]


They did not allow a single Democratic congressman to read the Trumpcare bills. They allowed no amendments. They have said they will follow the same plan with tax "reform".

Getting ready to pivot back to the Trump tax cuts. The last proposal I heard would double the standard deduction, but eliminate the deductability of state and local taxes. People in mostly blue states / coastal states tend to have the highest property taxes and there's a similar correlation for higher state income taxes. Democrats and their neighbors will get gouged, if that's the proposal that passes. (OK, dems who own houses and itemize.)
posted by puddledork at 11:21 AM on August 15 [7 favorites]


Trump gets a daily propaganda document of people praising him & agreeing with him on the subjects of the day.

That's inaccurate -- it's actually twice a day.

Which only strengthens your point, but.
posted by cjelli at 11:21 AM on August 15 [10 favorites]


National Review Calls for Removal of Confederate Monuments
“The monuments should go. Some of them simply should be trashed; others transmitted to museums, battlefields and cemeteries. The heroism and losses of Confederate soldiers should be commemorated, but not in everyday public spaces where the monuments are flashpoints in poisonous racial contention, with white nationalists often mustering in their defense,” editor Rich Lowry wrote in a piece published Tuesday.
...
“For supporters of the Confederate monuments, removing them from parks and avenues will be a blow against their heritage and historical memory. But the statues have often been part of an effort to whitewash the Confederacy,” Lowry said. “And it’s one thing for a statue to be merely a resting place for pigeons; it’s another for it to be a fighting cause for neo-Nazis.”
posted by kirkaracha at 11:22 AM on August 15 [20 favorites]


DOJ demands identifying information of visitors to anti-Trump website
posted by nubs at 5:57 AM on August 15 [11 favorites +] [!]


I was wondering when they were going to make the fascism official...
posted by Mental Wimp at 11:25 AM on August 15 [3 favorites]


There's an explanation of the Alameda County Sheriff's office retweet fiasco up at LA Times. The willingness of Sgt. Kelly who did the retweeting to be named and explain what happened is, I suppose, laudable. He seems to have fucked up even more in the process of undoing the retweet, which I find sort of hilarious:
Kelly said he tried to un-retweet Spencer but instead only muted it so it didn’t show up on his screen, but remained there for everyone else to see. He had to call the department’s IT team to take down the retweet, he said.
posted by yasaman at 11:27 AM on August 15 [13 favorites]


People in mostly blue states / coastal states tend to have the highest property taxes and there's a similar correlation for higher state income taxes. Democrats and their neighbors will get gouged, if that's the proposal that passes. (OK, dems who own houses and itemize.)

1) Landlords pass the cost of their property taxes on to renters. So renters contribute to property taxes too.

2) I suspect that an intended effect of this is to cause people to create political pressure to lower state and local taxes (since they would no longer be deductions.) If that happens, of course, schools are going to suffer badly. That's what most of that property tax money is going to pay for.

I called my blue state Republican Rep and told him the people who elected him are NOT going to appreciate the tax increase if he votes for this.
posted by OnceUponATime at 11:27 AM on August 15 [12 favorites]


That's inaccurate -- it's actually twice a day.

Thanks for the callout, I was unsure on that point. What's needed now is a FOIA suit to get ahold of these twice-daily influences on Trump.
posted by scalefree at 11:33 AM on August 15 [3 favorites]


What's needed now is a FOIA suit to get ahold of these twice-daily influences on Trump.

The 1st step down that road is asking for them. Has that been done?
posted by rough ashlar at 11:36 AM on August 15 [1 favorite]


Hey National Review - you say: The heroism and losses of Confederate soldiers should be commemorated,

Could you please point me to some places where we have commemorative statues of the folks who have shown heroism & lost against the US in other wars? Do we have some statues of brit soldiers from the revolutionary war? I'll even spot you the rebuilt white house as a memorial to the one that was burned down. Since you think non-public spaces are where they should go it's okay if they're not in the middle of a park or something, so long as they're not in embassies which are legally foreign soil.

I will not accept battlefields unless their signs and verbiage list and discuss the foreign forces and their losses before extolling the american victory.
posted by phearlez at 11:36 AM on August 15 [22 favorites]


CBO has scored the impact of eliminating the CSR payments for Obamacare: The Effects of Terminating Payments for Cost-Sharing Reductions. They say it will cost the government $194B over 10 years, saving $8B next year but costing $15B in higher premium tax credits. They don't think it will implode the markets, but will lead to weird imbalances, handing a windfall to those who have higher incomes. They actually seem pretty optimistic as to what it would do in the long-term (as I see it, it would amount to the government paying more for more coverage), but see significant problems in the short term as insurers pull out and others massively raise premiums to make up the difference.

There's also no sign that Trump cares about any of these practical implications at all, or remotely understands them, and will simply act out of spite.
posted by zachlipton at 11:42 AM on August 15 [31 favorites]


What's needed now is a FOIA suit to get ahold of these twice-daily influences on Trump.

I'd bet you a coffee you'll get an exemption (b)(2) claim for "internal documents" if you try to get things like that, maybe a (b)(5) internal/deliberative communications.

BUT if want to try for the glory of it I highly recommend using Muckrock. Doing so would make it available to a lot more people. Even denied requests can be interesting and illustrative to others, like this March request for deleted tweets.
posted by phearlez at 11:43 AM on August 15 [6 favorites]


Terminology proposal: instead of calling the opposing sides in the Civil War the Union and the Confederates, say it was the Confederates vs. the Americans.
posted by kirkaracha at 11:44 AM on August 15 [40 favorites]


The White House is exempt from FOIA. And the report I've seen indicated that Trump's twice-daily pleasure files come from the RNC, which isn't part of the government and not subject to FOIA either. Unless some other agency is involved, my gut is that you're out of luck.
posted by zachlipton at 11:46 AM on August 15


Maybe Trump could hire a bunch of prostitutes to pee on a copy of the Obamacare bill and that would be enough to end his obsession.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 11:47 AM on August 15 [8 favorites]


I'm not sure why a Tennessee Congresswoman is so interested in opening up most of the public domain to oil and gas leasing without any environmental review, but apparently she is. She's probably in the pocket of ALEC or whatever.

The funny thing is that leasing has dropped in recent years because the market has dropped, not because of environmental review. But there's no acknowledgement of that in this proposed legislation.
posted by suelac at 11:56 AM on August 15 [5 favorites]


[T]he report I've seen indicated that Trump's twice-daily pleasure files come from the RNC, which isn't part of the government and not subject to FOIA either.

'Trump's twice-daily pleasure files' gives a good shudder down the spine.

And: I was wondering about that earlier -- Vice reports a process that relies on the RNC, but involves White House staff:
The process of assembling the folder begins at the Republican National Committee’s “war room,” which has expanded from 4 to 10 people since the GOP won the White House...Beginning at 6 a.m. every weekday — the early start is a longtime war room tradition — three staffers arrive at the RNC to begin monitoring the morning shows on CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News as they scour the internet and newspapers. Every 30 minutes or so, the staffers send the White House Communications Office an email with chyron screenshots, tweets, news stories, and interview transcripts.

White House staffers then cull the information, send out clips to other officials, and push favorable headlines to a list of journalists. But they also pick out the most positive bits to give to the president. On days when there aren’t enough positive chyrons, communications staffers will ask the RNC staffers for flattering photos of the president.
RNC assembles, sends to White House, White House culls, organizes, and forwards to the President. That sounds as if it should be treated -- and I'm saying this a layperson without any particular knowledge -- like a presidential record: it's technically a report prepared by the White House to brief the President, even if it's sourced from the RNC (which makes it of questionable accuracy and begets other issues) and even if its horribly, albeit intentionally, biased.

Which gets you back to 'is the White House covered by FOIA,' unless there's some non-White House, non-RNC organization involved, I guess.
posted by cjelli at 11:58 AM on August 15


@GovernorPataki:
Kid Rock is exactly the kind of candidate the GOP needs right now. #KidRockForSenate @KidRock
http://loudwire.com/kid-rock-senate-run-nod-of-support-republican-super-pac/
posted by chris24 at 9:10 AM on August 15 [10 favorites −] Favorite added! [!]


No, we need President Comacho!
posted by Mental Wimp at 12:07 PM on August 15 [5 favorites]


Oh I missed that he had propaganda read to him every day amongst all the you know nazis carrying torches thing. My bad! How nice of those around him to feed him info that's basically "Good Boy" every day. I mean, jeez, even my dog gets suspicious if I call her a "good girl" too much when trying to get her to do something she doesn't want to do... So this reality has the President of the United States being more gullible than my dog.. Therapy is going to be ranting about white men and the patriarchy and racists again tomorrow isn't it, kanata? Sigh. Just remember when ranting about your queer feminist intersectional revolution of the future where all men (sorry) are forced to go in public with two women escorts and any two white men talking to each other is a gang make sure your therapist thinks they knows you're joking to stay out of the mental ward!
posted by kanata at 12:07 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


CNN: Obamacare premiums to soar 20% if Trump ends key Obamacare subsidies, CBO says

Trump said he wanted affordable healthcare for all. Will he choose to increases costs by 20% out of spite? Maybe!
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 12:08 PM on August 15 [11 favorites]


The Hill: President Trump is set to repeal an Obama-era order requiring tougher new building standards for government-funded infrastructure projects in flood-prone areas, including those at risk of rising sea levels brought on by climate change.

Someone should point out to Trump that Obama was strongly opposed to resigning office
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 12:12 PM on August 15 [30 favorites]


Someone should point out to Trump that Obama was strongly opposed to resigning office

I suspect Trump looked at that and decided that as a developer it was more important to build cheap now and get out before the homeowners all got flooded out. He's really ridiculously venal.
posted by suelac at 12:18 PM on August 15


Room 641-A: Pence "not aware" of any Russian collusion with Trump campaign (Emily Tillet, CBS News)

Vice President Mike Pence says he "never witnessed" any evidence of collusion between the Russian government and Trump campaign officials during the 2016 campaign, and reaffirmed his commitment to cooperating with the special counsel's investigation into Russian election interference and possible Russian ties to the Trump organization.


Emphasis mine: that feels like a strategic phrase in case someone finds emails with Pence looped in. And for reference for timelines of events, Trump first tweeted (because, of course) that Pence was his running mate on July 15, 2016 (CNN article, with a pleasantly grumpy looking Pence as the still image in an embedded video segment).

"I, uh, never saw Russian officials colluding with, uh, the Trump campaign," Pence will likely say. "We might have met with some Russians to talk about trade deals or adoption, but I never witnessed any evidence of collusion."

(Also, check the shredders in Pence's office.)
posted by filthy light thief at 12:20 PM on August 15 [8 favorites]


You have to search for Nazis to follow to accidentally retweet them

Funny thing. I recently searched the hashtag #nazi on twitter (I wasn't looking for nazis to follow and retweet) and it throws up news and then people relevant to that search term before showing tweets that include the tag. For people I got offered the @realDonalTrump account. Their search seems to work quite well.
posted by Elmore at 12:27 PM on August 15 [19 favorites]


I'd not mind getting the Nazis (Holocaust denial, blog posts calling Julius Streicher a martyr, etc) out of my historical Google searches.
posted by thelonius at 12:36 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


>Vice President Mike Pence says he "never witnessed" any evidence of collusion between the Russian government and Trump campaign officials during the 2016 campaign,

Emphasis mine: that feels like a strategic phrase in case someone finds emails with Pence looped in.


At the risk of reading too much into Pence's phrasing, I heard it the same way: he's explicitly not saying that collusion didn't occur, but he is explicitly claiming that he wasn't personally complicit in any collusion:
"I made it very clear I am not aware of any contacts during the time that I was on the campaign between any officials of the Russian government and officials with the campaign, and I stand by that," reiterated Pence.
It's quite the contrast to Trump's actual denials that any collusion took place; it feels like Pence is angling to keep himself clear of any entanglements, which...I find hard to believe, for a variety of reasons discussed at length previously here. At the very least, if there was wrongdoing, I think Pence turned a blind eye to it -- at best -- rather than doing his due diligence to actually stop or expose wrongdoing. That's the opposite of innocence, and is an approach beneath the dignity of his office.
posted by cjelli at 12:41 PM on August 15 [3 favorites]


Here are the business leaders who are — and aren’t — officially advising Trump (Tony Romm for Recode, Aug. 15, 2017)
For its part, the White House does not maintain an updated, public list of its corporate advisers. But here’s who still assists Trump — and who has left his advisory groups.
Of course, why would it? Anyway, 8 are out, and at least 37 others still in. Plenty of companies to boycott and publicly shame.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:44 PM on August 15 [3 favorites]


The Hill: President Trump is set to repeal an Obama-era order requiring tougher new building standards for government-funded infrastructure projects in flood-prone areas, including those at risk of rising sea levels brought on by climate change.

It's a shame the Hill article buries at the bottom the comments about how short term this thinking is. Over the course of my growing up in Miami we saw a continuing relaxation on both building standards & inspections and relaxing of building out to the west of the county such that it encroached into the Everglades.

The inevitable result was seen both in the devastation after hurricane Andrew and in issue with flooding in those ill-conceived builds out near and past Krome ave. Whatever positive benefits came to people and the economy from letting those houses go up was far outstripped by the extended impact of the disaster when it finally arrived. As it inevitably was going to.
posted by phearlez at 12:55 PM on August 15 [10 favorites]


Turns out wetlands are gonna wetland, who knew
posted by tivalasvegas at 12:57 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


Pence's statement that "I made it very clear I am not aware of any contacts during the time that I was on the campaign between any officials of the Russian government and officials with the campaign" could also reasonably be parsed as:
  • There were contacts between officials of the Russian government and officials with the campaign
  • They happened before Pence joined the campaign (July 15)
  • Pence was aware of them
  • But there were no further contacts after Pence joined.

    In which case (assuming some nefarious coordination) the question is whether any additional contact would even have been necessary once a plan was in motion, and whether Pence's knowledge of, and benefiting from, any collusion is enough to get him wrapped up in it.

  • posted by stopgap at 12:59 PM on August 15 [14 favorites]


    I got up at 5:30 this morning to participate in our democracy and attended a live, in-person town-hall with Senator Cory Gardner (R-CO). He's held tons of telephone town-halls but hadn't publicly met face to face w constituents in over a year, before a meeting last week in Durango which was also attended by Gov Hickenlooper and Senator Bennet (D). This was one of 3 he's got planned for today and started at 7:30. Gardner made statements over the weekend telling the president to call evil by its name and denouncing the events in Charlottesville as domestic terrorism by white supremacists. He seems legitimately upset about it, but had nothing other than platitudes about how racism is bad and hard to explain to his kids and offered nothing substantive about what he's doing about it beyond statements. Gardner was asked by a man whose grandfather died in the Holocaust if he (Gardner) believes Trump is fit to serve. Gardner said he does. The crowd was most riled up about health care and he fielded several questions about it. At one point, the moderator, State Senator Bob Gardner (no relation), who represents part of Colorado Springs, tried to insert a prepared question about transportation but Cory decided to let the person whose name had been selected from the box ask their question, which turned out to be another question on health care. His answers were terrible; he doesn't support a single payer system, he doesn't agree with the idea of socialized medicine at all and referenced the Charlie Gard case. I wish I could be more insightful or eloquent about the meeting, but it felt awful and draining to be in a room full of angry people, who are angry for good reasons, and who were shouting over each other (I swear I'm not that "can't we all just listen and be nice and speak politely" person; I must need better defenses, I'm tired and my head still hurts.) and to watch the Senator smile and evade and spout platitudes and generally seem unconcerned about how unpresidential the president is.

    More positively, the opposition to Cheyenne Mountain Resort hosting VDARE's national conference in 2018 is gaining traction and media attention.
    posted by danielleh at 1:08 PM on August 15 [14 favorites]


    Trump is now taking questions in the Trump Tower lobby despite staff saying he wouldn't. He's announced "When I make a statement, I like to be correct." That may be the least true thing he's ever said. He's saying the first statement was based just on "what we were seeing" (on TV I guess) and the second statement "was made with knowledge."

    And, my god: @maggieNYT: Trump says the mother of the woman killed said "the nicest things about me"

    This is worth watching. He's nuts.
    posted by zachlipton at 1:10 PM on August 15 [61 favorites]


    Listening to Ill Douche's remarks from Trump Tower -- supposed to be about infrastructure, but so far all questions have been about C'ville and CEOs etc. Certainly not helping him staying on agenda.
    posted by AwkwardPause at 1:11 PM on August 15 [1 favorite]


    What a FUCKING ASSHOLE
    posted by yoga at 1:12 PM on August 15 [36 favorites]


    Trump is now doing literal whataboutitsm with "what about the alt-left who came charging at them [the Nazis]?"

    This is the lowest low.
    posted by zachlipton at 1:13 PM on August 15 [42 favorites]


    > And, my god: @maggieNYT: Trump says the mother of the woman killed said "the nicest things about me"

    Sadly, Ron Howard has stopped taking calls from his agent, and is en route to a remote wilderness to live out the rest of his days in solitude.
    posted by tonycpsu at 1:14 PM on August 15 [45 favorites]


    Trump is now taking questions in the Trump Tower lobby despite staff saying he wouldn't

    This is, uh, not going well, to put it mildly.

    He should take questions more often.
    posted by cjelli at 1:15 PM on August 15 [12 favorites]


    This is worth watching. He's nuts.

    Fuck me the man is truly nuts.
    posted by Talez at 1:15 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


    Trump: "First Robert E. Lee, then Stonewall Jackson. Who next? George Washington?!" [sadly, REAL]
    posted by Freon at 1:16 PM on August 15 [22 favorites]


    He's nuts and he really does believe in that white power shit. Don't let anyone tell you different and poke them in the face until they acquiesce.
    posted by Burhanistan at 1:17 PM on August 15 [31 favorites]


    The mother of the woman actually started a Skype desktop share session just so she could join the President in marveling at his inauguration crowd size
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 1:17 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


    Defending literal nazis.
    posted by Talez at 1:17 PM on August 15 [8 favorites]


    This is completely fucking insane.
    posted by Gaz Errant at 1:17 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


    Donald Trump is a devout white supremacist because Donald Trump is a devout Donald Trump supremacist and Donald Trump is white.
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 1:17 PM on August 15 [37 favorites]


    He's so fucking unhinged right now.
    posted by tonycpsu at 1:18 PM on August 15 [7 favorites]


    Trump just compared Jefferson and Washington morally to the Confederates. Literally. Not sort of. Not kinda. Straight up.
    posted by Justinian at 1:18 PM on August 15 [21 favorites]


    He just what-abouted George Washington.
    posted by tonycpsu at 1:18 PM on August 15 [3 favorites]


    even after everything that's happened i cannot believe what i am seeing and hearing
    posted by prefpara at 1:18 PM on August 15 [3 favorites]


    [folks, remember it's ok to take the livebloggy stuff over to chat. Long thread is long.]
    posted by jessamyn at 1:18 PM on August 15 [10 favorites]


    That dude ain't right.
    posted by AwkwardPause at 1:19 PM on August 15 [7 favorites]


    i am following along via @ddale8 on twitter and i have such an utter lack of evens that a singularity has formed and is sucking me into its event horizon
    posted by entropicamericana at 1:19 PM on August 15 [9 favorites]


    "Protesting quietly"

    THEY WERE CHANTING "THE JEWS WILL NOT REPLACE US!"
    posted by Talez at 1:20 PM on August 15 [57 favorites]


    >Fuck me the man is truly nuts.

    >This is completely fucking insane.

    >He's so fucking unhinged right now.


    I started typing up a partial transcript and a summary, but, really, this is the main takeaway, for anyone who's not watching this live: this is the most batshit insane gibberish from a President in...ever, maybe?

    There's a lot of specific stuff to pull out of this, and I'm sure we'll be seeing the clips on...every show? But the broad, non-specific takeaway here is that (1) he was substantially incoherent, (2) he defended the Nazis in Cville rather than condemning them, belying his earlier statements, and went so far as to claim that they weren't actually all white nationalists, (3) again, I really want to stress how incoherent and unhinged this was.
    posted by cjelli at 1:22 PM on August 15 [31 favorites]


    Whoa, that was bizarre.
    posted by rc3spencer at 1:23 PM on August 15 [1 favorite]


    Well, to be fair, if George Washington isn't a problematic fave I don't know who is.
    posted by Jpfed at 1:23 PM on August 15 [6 favorites]


    "Protesting quietly"

    THEY WERE CHANTING "THE JEWS WILL NOT REPLACE US!"


    I think they said something similar about "LOCK HER UP," which always struck me and being really sick and creepy, and I was puzzled then that the media wasn't doing anything about it, and I'm puzzled now. More than puzzled, of course.
    posted by Melismata at 1:23 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


    Is anyone else shaking after watching that?
    posted by run"monty at 1:23 PM on August 15 [21 favorites]


    This is worth watching. He's nuts.

    I like how he rolled out of that elevator with about 100 other people like from a clown car.
    posted by mazola at 1:24 PM on August 15 [5 favorites]


    Hard to keep the Charlottesville thread and this one separate right now. Mostly I'm wondering why I feel any surprise at what Trump is doing.
    posted by emjaybee at 1:24 PM on August 15 [6 favorites]


    Is anyone else shaking after watching that?

    Based on the comments of my MeFi associates, I spent the time drinking bourbon and doing a load of laundry.
    posted by mikelieman at 1:25 PM on August 15 [12 favorites]


    I only tuned in at the end, where a reporter asked him if he planned to visit Charlottesville and he dodged the question by talking about how he owns a house in Charlottesville, a big, beautiful winery. Is there any question he won't twist around to stroking his own ego?
    posted by marshmallow peep at 1:25 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


    They weren't all Nazis. Some were dyslexic and thought they were going to a Zany rally.
    posted by dances_with_sneetches at 1:25 PM on August 15 [10 favorites]


    Every day is a new national humiliation. every. fucking. day.
    posted by lalex at 1:25 PM on August 15 [55 favorites]


    That's what we have as our president. God help us all.
    posted by rewil at 1:25 PM on August 15 [6 favorites]


    Since he's right there on 5th Avenue he might as well go out and shoot that guy he was talking about.
    posted by Burhanistan at 1:25 PM on August 15 [60 favorites]


    John Kelly during the President's Q and A at Trump Tower

    It just says everything.
    posted by Talez at 1:25 PM on August 15 [21 favorites]


    You know guys I'm starting to get the impression the president isn't a very good person.
    posted by Justinian at 1:25 PM on August 15 [44 favorites]


    >This is worth watching. He's nuts.

    I like how he rolled out of that elevator with about 100 other people like a clown car.


    That comparison between the President's entourage and a bunch of clowns demeans the dignity, commitment to hard work, and dedication to public service of clowns everywhere.
    posted by cjelli at 1:25 PM on August 15 [41 favorites]


    Great. Now we get to suffer through god knows how many bullshit tweets from the ASSHOLE in CHIEF because Obama got 2.5 million favorites on his Nelson Mandela quote tweets on Saturday night.
    posted by yoga at 1:26 PM on August 15 [8 favorites]


    I think this is the pivot.
    posted by dis_integration at 1:26 PM on August 15 [74 favorites]


    this is what it's like to be ruled by a mad, evil king, isn't it.

    Not only is Trump himself sickening, but I'm preemptively ill at the thought of how the fucking media will decide to spin this so it's normal and okay and not a source of profound shame and horror.
    posted by yasaman at 1:28 PM on August 15 [50 favorites]


    25th Amendment.

    TWENTY-FIFTH AMENDMENT.
    posted by Guy Smiley at 1:29 PM on August 15 [40 favorites]


    Was the Washington/Jefferson thing on Brietbart or something? I just had someone earlier say something similar about how if the confederate statutes have to come down they should take down the Washington and Jefferson monuments too, since they owned slaves. Clearly. They don't think these things up independently, it all comes from the same hate sources and gets spread to talk radio, Facebook and now the President's mouth.
    posted by T.D. Strange at 1:29 PM on August 15 [5 favorites]




    That was truly the moment he became Joffrey.
    posted by rc3spencer at 1:30 PM on August 15 [23 favorites]


    This is the moment that Trump truly became Grand Wizard
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 1:30 PM on August 15 [58 favorites]


    Was the Washington/Jefferson thing on Brietbart or something? I just had someone earlier say something similar about how if the confederate statutes have to come down they should take down the Washington and Jefferson monuments too, since they owned slaves. Clearly. They don't think these things up independently, it all comes from the same hate sources and gets spread to talk radio, Facebook and now the President's mouth.

    Yeah. I think it was, because I got an email from my grandmother this morning asking the same questions. I wrote her back what the difference was, and sent this explainer from a source she might consider legit (sorry if this was linked in the Charlottesville thread; it's from earlier in the summer but quite a good and sober analysis that *might* carry water with any doubters).
    posted by witchen at 1:32 PM on August 15 [8 favorites]


    That was truly the moment he became Joffrey.
    posted by rc3spencer at 1:30 PM on August 15 [1 favorite +]
    [!]

    I thought he went straight to Areys II.
    posted by ultranos at 1:33 PM on August 15 [9 favorites]


    Curious about how Trump comparing Washington and Jefferson to Confederates lines up to Pat Buchanan's defense of white supremacy today...
    Many Southern towns, including Alexandria, Virginia, have statues of Confederate soldiers looking to the South. Shall we pull them all down? And once all the Southern Civil War monuments are gone, should we go after the statues of the slave owners whom we Americans have heroized?

    Gen. George Washington and his subordinate, “Light Horse Harry” Lee, father of Robert E. Lee, were slave owners, as was Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe and Andrew Jackson. Five of our first seven presidents owned slaves, as did James K. Polk, who invaded and annexed the northern half of Mexico, including California.

    Jefferson, with his exploitation of Sally Hemings and neglect of their children, presents a particular problem. While he wrote in the Declaration of Independence of his belief that “all men are created equal,” his life and his depiction of Indians in that document belie this.

    And Jefferson is both on the face of Mount Rushmore and has a memorial in the U.S. capital.
    The gist of Pat's op-ed is: "We can't tear down statues of white supremacists. All my heroes are white supremacists! And seriously is America even America anymore if it is not majority white? Nationality is defined by race, surely?"

    (He ends with: “All men are created equal” is an ideological statement. Where is the scientific or historic proof for it?)

    Did Trump talk to Buchanan? Did someone read Trump Buchanan's piece?
    posted by OnceUponATime at 1:33 PM on August 15 [19 favorites]


    If you missed it, you can use this C-SPAN link to watch from the beginning. It starts with infrastructure and the permitting process, including some props (note that there were no members of Congress in this meeting, despite the fact that Congress would have to pass an infrastructure bill) and a rather condescending "Elaine, do you see that?" to Sec. Chao. The questions start at around 6:30; he's reasonably hinged before that.

    Fun fact: Trump Winery not the largest winery, not even the largest on the east coast.

    And this is just...Um...@markknoller: "I stand by my man - both of them," said @SecElaineChao, asked about Pres Trump's public criticism of her husband, @SenateMajLdr.
    posted by zachlipton at 1:33 PM on August 15 [10 favorites]


    Holy gaslighting batman, he re-read his Saturday statement on Charlottesville omitting the "on many sides" ad-lib in an extended riff about making sure what he says is correct.
    posted by peeedro at 1:34 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


    Many Southern towns, including Alexandria, Virginia, have statues of Confederate soldiers looking to the South. Shall we pull them all down?

    Yup. Then melt them down and recycle the metal.
    posted by mikelieman at 1:34 PM on August 15 [17 favorites]


    Trump asked about Steve Bannon: "He came on very late, you know that!"

    This is a response to a book claiming that Bannon was instrumental in the election win. This alone is very upsetting to Donald.
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 1:35 PM on August 15 [7 favorites]


    Yup. Then melt them down and recycle the metal.

    Hospital bedpans.
    posted by Talez at 1:35 PM on August 15 [19 favorites]


    Then melt them down and recycle the metal

    Use the metal to build low-income housing for elderly African-Americans.
    posted by suelac at 1:36 PM on August 15 [10 favorites]


    @EricBoehlert:

    he's defending the Friday night torch rally
    he's defending the Friday night torch rally
    he's defending the Friday night torch rally
    posted by lalex at 1:37 PM on August 15 [75 favorites]


    we need to erect a statue to pat buchanan so we can tear it down
    posted by pyramid termite at 1:37 PM on August 15 [18 favorites]


    Interesting to me that he wasn't supposed to take questions (or at least, press was told he wouldn't take questions), but someone sent him out there with a piece of paper with text from his Saturday statement so he could quote it.
    posted by zachlipton at 1:37 PM on August 15 [3 favorites]


    However, Trump Whinery is the biggest whinery.
    posted by dances_with_sneetches at 1:37 PM on August 15 [58 favorites]


    he's defending the Friday night torch rally

    it was a very quiet torch rally and they had permits
    posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 1:38 PM on August 15 [1 favorite]


    While we're here let's have a slow clap for all the Vox personalities who coined "alt-left" to describe people in favor of single payer health care. "Alt-left" is the new "fake news", so that's great.
    posted by T.D. Strange at 1:39 PM on August 15 [31 favorites]



    Being forced to do something sure makes him mad. That was a whole bunch of 'fuck you all' pure rage. You wanna know what I think. This is what I really think. Fuck you.

    Guy can't fake anything for political expediency. It's horrible but it would be worse if he was able to hide it like a lot of pols can.
    posted by Jalliah at 1:39 PM on August 15 [26 favorites]


    Hospital bedpans.
    low-income housing for elderly African-Americans.


    Use the metal to build bedpans for elderly African-Americans in free hospitals and low-income housing
    posted by entropicamericana at 1:39 PM on August 15 [5 favorites]


    it was a very quiet torch rally and they had permits

    Who hasn't screamed anti-Semitic statements during a quiet torch rally?
    posted by Talez at 1:39 PM on August 15 [33 favorites]


    Then melt them down and recycle the metal

    Memorials commemorating the role of enslaved and indigenous people in creating this country.
    posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 1:40 PM on August 15 [5 favorites]


    That "he came on very late" regarding Bannon is actually talking about the white supremacy thing. As in trump was already enthralled with it since a small boy.
    posted by Burhanistan at 1:40 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


    When healthcare came up, he very pointedly blamed John McCain and told reporters to ask him. Twice.
    posted by Room 641-A at 1:40 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


    Yo, media: which part of "Trump has absolutely no idea what he's doing" don't you understand?
    posted by Melismata at 1:41 PM on August 15 [8 favorites]


    > While we're here let's have a slow clap for all the Vox personalities who coined "alt-left" to describe people in favor of single payer health care. "Alt-left" is the new "fake news", so that's great.

    Huh?
    posted by tonycpsu at 1:41 PM on August 15 [5 favorites]


    honestly I thought I had lost the capacity to be shocked but here we are
    posted by lalex at 1:42 PM on August 15 [39 favorites]


    I'm not certain there are enough Confederate monuments in this country to melt into all the stuff you guys want to make, never mind the metallurgical challenges involved.
    posted by Faint of Butt at 1:42 PM on August 15


    "some people say trump has no idea what he's doing, others call him the orange sun god..." –npr [fake]
    posted by entropicamericana at 1:42 PM on August 15 [6 favorites]


    I'm not certain there are enough Confederate monuments in this country to melt into all the stuff you guys want to make, never mind the metallurgical challenges involved.

    Like receiving a gift, it's the thought that counts.
    posted by Talez at 1:42 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


    I am fucking stunned. The president just made a speech OVERTLY stating all the talking points of racist white supremacists.

    That whole spiel about how the "alt left" is equally or more to blame, how so many of those lovely young alt-right men just wanted to defend a statue. . . . I am fucking stunned. THIS IS FUCKING APPALLING.

    The only specific criticisms he had were of the anti-racists. He has said nothing critical of the white supremacist nazis.

    The dogwhistles are gone. They're done. He's openly defending nazis on TV. At length, over and over. and taking their side. He's making their case. You could put this shit side by side with any racist white power speech and find loads of parallels.
    posted by FelliniBlank at 1:43 PM on August 15 [152 favorites]


    I'm not certain there are enough Confederate monuments in this country to melt into all the stuff you guys want to make, never mind the metallurgical challenges involved.

    There's one way to find out!
    posted by notyou at 1:43 PM on August 15 [24 favorites]


    While we're here let's have a slow clap for all the Vox personalities who coined "alt-left" to describe people in favor of single payer health care.

    Vox deserves blame for a lot of things, but the only uses of alt-left I see on the site are two quotes, and I don't see any uses of that term on Klein or Yglesias's twitters.

    I don't deny some liberals have used it to hippiepunch, but I don't think very many have.
    posted by zachlipton at 1:43 PM on August 15 [9 favorites]


    David Roberts/Vox: Scott Pruitt is dismantling EPA in secret for the same reason the GOP health care bill was secret
    The New York Times had a big story (noted above) on Friday about EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt’s propensity to operate in secret. It offers a detailed and damning review of the evidence, but it stops short of drawing the broader conclusion: namely, that the approach of serving industry under cover of secrecy is not idiosyncratic to Pruitt, nor is it distinctively Trumpian. Rather, it is the standard approach of today’s GOP, as reflected in such recent initiatives as the failed health care bill. It is, in fact, the only approach possible to advance an agenda that is unpopular and intellectually indefensible.

    ...

    ... Pruitt is keeping his agenda as hidden as possible for the very same reasons Republicans in Congress tried to keep their recent health care bill a secret: Virtually no one likes it and there’s not a coherent policy case to be made for it.

    Interestingly, in the case of the health care bill, GOP radicalism went so far that not even the health care industries and constituencies that fought against Obamacare supported it. Given the chance to enact a longtime policy priority, the GOP went too far and fell on its face. We’re seeing some of that crop up around Pruitt as well.

    ...

    Trump, Pruitt, and today’s GOP are the inevitable outcome of [the process of pulling the conservative base away from the mainstream], which has been unfolding right under our noses. It got bad under Gingrich, worse under the reign of George W. Bush, and utterly out of control under Obama. In health care policy, tax policy, and environmental policy, the intellectual foundation has rotted away. What remains is will to power, the raw impulse to degrade and destroy anything liberals support, and the belief that hesitation or circumspection amounts to treachery.

    Of course Pruitt operates in secret, counseled by industry and ideologues, unwilling and unable to engage the broader public. He is a Republican in 2017.
    posted by ZeusHumms at 1:43 PM on August 15 [53 favorites]


    honestly I thought I had lost the capacity to be shocked but here we are

    Evergreen post. I think this DAILY.
    posted by marshmallow peep at 1:44 PM on August 15 [24 favorites]


    While we're here let's have a slow clap for all the Vox personalities who coined "alt-left" to describe people in favor of single payer health care. "Alt-left" is the new "fake news", so that's great.

    And another slow clap for the purists who are already preparing the gulags.
    posted by Guy Smiley at 1:45 PM on August 15 [1 favorite]


    Well, he just gave everyone else on his corporate council any excuse they could possibly need to leave now (as if they didn't have that the day he announced his candidacy).

    Half of me thinks John Kelly spent the entire time saying "North Korea, North Korea" in his head. But more than half of me doesn't care. Everyone in this administration with any decency or dignity should resign until Trump has no choice but to resign himself.

    Like I say, I can dream.
    posted by scaryblackdeath at 1:45 PM on August 15 [3 favorites]


    The president just made a speech OVERTLY stating all the talking points of racist white supremacists.

    Trump is now truly the Dunce of the Confederacy.
    posted by Kabanos at 1:45 PM on August 15 [29 favorites]


    Many Southern towns, including Alexandria, Virginia, have statues of Confederate soldiers looking to the South. Shall we pull them all down?

    Yup. Then melt them down and recycle the metal.


    And use those funds to pay the medical bills of those injured fighting Nazis in the streets of Charlottesville.
    posted by filthy light thief at 1:45 PM on August 15 [1 favorite]


    The President specifically said he was holding back his statements until he was aware of the facts. Now he says that many of the right-wing protesters in Charlottesville were not white supremacists or white nationalists or neo-Nazis but were merely making the very sensible decision to protest the removal of a statue, which could lead to a slippery slope of statue-removal leading up to George Washington. Those, to the President, are the facts. That is the State of the Union.
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 1:46 PM on August 15 [62 favorites]


    Who forgot to put Il Dunce down for his nap today? Jeezus. This is scary. At the same time, I hope this is it - keep the pressure up over this and watch the man implode.
    posted by nubs at 1:47 PM on August 15 [1 favorite]


    No need to move the metal. Have local artists render some variation on "Free from the chains" wherever those things used to stand.

    I think there was an FPP recently on the dearth of those kinds of monuments in the US and their prevalence elsewhere.
    posted by Slackermagee at 1:48 PM on August 15 [1 favorite]


    "a statue that is very important to them culturally"
    posted by yesster at 1:48 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


    @PhilPlait:
    1/4 I have been on Twitter since April 2007. In those 10+ years I have tweeted over 72,000 times.

    2/4 In all that time, I have never used strong “curse” words. Not for emphasis, not for a joke. Never.

    3/4 So when I tweet this, know full well the import and impact of what I say:

    4/4 Donald Trump, the sitting President of the United States, is a piece of shit.
    posted by non canadian guy at 1:49 PM on August 15 [135 favorites]


    I hope this is it - keep the pressure up over this and watch the man implode.


    Groundhog Day
    posted by Burhanistan at 1:49 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


    Let's just remember that when he made his vague half-assed remarks on Saturday, racist nazi goons had orgasms of joy over how supportive he was.

    This speech today? This is going to get many, many people hurt, killed, and intimidated. Remember the flood of hate crimes immediately after the election? He just made a speech overtly validating these violent dangerous fucks.
    posted by FelliniBlank at 1:49 PM on August 15 [54 favorites]


    Anyway, good job John Kelly.
    posted by PenDevil at 1:49 PM on August 15 [30 favorites]


    My moment of "holy shit" this morning: Hate Groups' Core Changed Little Over The Years, Ex-FBI Agent Says (NPR, Aug. 15, 2017) -- David Greene talks to former special agent Michael German about how law enforcement and the federal government are countering the current white supremacist movement following the violence in Virginia.
    GERMAN: I find it hard to believe that somebody who wasn't racist last year all of a sudden decided it's a good idea to become racist this year. So I think what it is is the change that we've seen is that there has been some state sanctioning of these ideas and of these political goals. And that's...

    GREENE: State sanctioning?

    GERMAN: Absolutely.

    GREENE: I want to be really careful to understand what you mean by that.

    GERMAN: Well, certainly during the Trump campaign, there - you know, what had been a normal sort of dog-whistle appeal to racists and white supremacists and other of these far-right ideologies that it was a normal part of far-right or - not even far-right, right-wing populism, and a lot of conservatives would do it, what Donald Trump did was throw away the dog whistle and pick up a bullhorn and make very clear to these groups that he was going to take anti-Muslim positions, that he was going to take anti-Latino positions, that what - he was going to characterize security issues as protecting his community from other American communities.

    GREENE: So you see those messaging, whatever it is, as causing some of these - some of these people to feel like they can come out of the shadows?

    GERMAN: Right, it legitimized these views so that many more people could come forward and express them, feeling - and frankly, it did become part of the - our mainstream political discourse. And part of that was the media, right? I mean, Donald Trump didn't put a microphone in a (laughter) - in front of a lot of these people. That was the media putting the microphone in front of people whose viewpoints shouldn't be part of our normal political discourse.

    GREENE: So the president has now disavowed these groups. I mean, it took him a couple of days. What more does this administration need to do to make sure it's supporting efforts to stop these hate groups?

    GERMAN: Well, that disavowal was very reluctant and late. And the white supremacist groups got the message from that, that this is sanctioned. But more important is that the police in these cases - and Charlottesville isn't the first one. They were two in Berkeley. There was one in Sacramento and in Huntington Beach, Calif. - are policing these protests very differently, where they're allowing violence and these running street battles to happen. And that is - that, again, is a state sanctioning of this kind of violence that gives - that makes them far more dangerous.
    Emphasis mine: STATE. SANCTIONED. VIOLENCE.

    Utilizing the 25th amendment won't be enough to turn this around, but, like removing Confederate statues, it's a damned good start.
    posted by filthy light thief at 1:50 PM on August 15 [108 favorites]


    Statue removal = bad. Statute removal = good.
    posted by Elmore at 1:50 PM on August 15 [5 favorites]


    Can we go back to facing a nuclear holocaust like we were last week? I was actually kinda looking forward to having an end to all this.
    posted by Capt. Renault at 1:51 PM on August 15 [51 favorites]


    I seriously fucking hope there is one goddamn gigantic scoop o'clock today on this fucking embarrassing, incompetent MORONIC ASSHOLE we have in our WHitehouse.
    posted by yoga at 1:52 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


    just look on the bright side at least he's not running a private email server
    posted by entropicamericana at 1:52 PM on August 15 [89 favorites]


    Can we go back to facing a nuclear holocaust like we were last week? I was actually kinda looking forward to having an end to all this.

    The only silver lining to all this is that it seems to have distracted Trump from ending the world, so, y'know, ymmv.
    posted by dis_integration at 1:52 PM on August 15 [6 favorites]


    Best stolen Twitter line: "Worst presidential event since JFK came to Dallas"
    posted by Talez at 1:52 PM on August 15 [20 favorites]


    Not All Torch-Wielders
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 1:53 PM on August 15 [8 favorites]


    There shouldn't be the slightest doubt as to what Trump just did:

    @DrDavidDuke: Thank you President Trump for your honesty & courage to tell the truth about #Charlottesville & condemn the leftist terrorists in BLM/Antifa

    Short of reciting the 14 words from the podium, he couldn't have handed these people a bigger victory.
    posted by zachlipton at 1:53 PM on August 15 [116 favorites]


    It's really just about ethics in statue-removal.
    posted by suelac at 1:54 PM on August 15 [38 favorites]


    So that Q&A made me feel super awesome about the counter-protest against Nazis that I'll be participating in on Saturday. I'm sure they're feeling very chastened and ready to peacefully take the hint that they are not welcome in our city.
    posted by soren_lorensen at 1:54 PM on August 15 [24 favorites]


    Can we go back to facing a nuclear holocaust like we were last week? I was actually kinda looking forward to having an end to all this.

    The only silver lining to all this is that it seems to have distracted Trump from ending the world, so, y'know, ymmv.


    Zack Beauchamp/Vox: While Trump was distracted, North Korea calmed down. That’s not a coincidence.
    posted by ZeusHumms at 1:54 PM on August 15 [32 favorites]


    I wish I had even the smallest smidgen of faith that this latest bout of insanity will change anything. But it won't, right? We'll all get outraged here and on Twitter but then the gaslighting will really kick in, and the media will happily enable it, Republican politicians will fall in line, and suddenly Charlottesville wasn't a Nazi rally, it was just a group of statue enthusiasts who were cruelly harmed by violent leftists.

    There are so many people in this man's thrall, there are so many people who have hollowed themselves out and given pieces of themselves away, and for what? For this piece of shit? For what dregs of power they can snatch and hoard and steal away from everyone else in that festering pit of monsters in an endless battle for influence? The moral depravity is perpetually surprising to me, I don't know why.
    posted by yasaman at 1:54 PM on August 15 [9 favorites]


    Ah, the sweet innocence of half an hour ago.
    posted by Behemoth at 1:55 PM on August 15 [112 favorites]


    The only silver lining to all this is that it seems to have distracted Trump from ending the world, so, y'know, ymmv.

    I'm on the opposite side of it. This is the first time I've been genuinely worried Trump will want to rage-nuke North Korea (or someone else) just to show he's a big man and in charge. Like I'm seriously hoping every dude carrying the football is preparing himself to shut down the Commander in Chief.
    posted by scaryblackdeath at 1:56 PM on August 15


    Calling my GOP senators to ask if they agree that the President is unfit for office and should resign
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 1:56 PM on August 15 [37 favorites]


    Can we go back to facing a nuclear holocaust like we were last week?

    Geez, these White House theme weeks are something. I would've thought it would be tough to follow Nuclear Holocaust week without losing some of the energy. But White Supremacy Week is shaping up to be even more... exciting?
    posted by OnceUponATime at 1:56 PM on August 15 [5 favorites]


    If the 25th was invoked would we be able to suspend all his executive orders and signed bill because they were signed by simeone unfit to be president?

    Also, Nicole Wallace (who used to work in the GWB White House) looks right into the camera and says,"Who resigns over this? Who? Which one of you will resign over this?"
    posted by Room 641-A at 1:58 PM on August 15 [6 favorites]


    There are so many people in this man's thrall, there are so many people who have hollowed themselves out and given pieces of themselves away, and for what?

    Dignity wraiths.
    posted by soren_lorensen at 1:59 PM on August 15 [12 favorites]


    Calling my GOP senators to ask if they agree that the President is unfit for office and should resign
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94


    More people should do this. I've been using the post-Charlottesville clusterfuck to make this case on facebook, forcefully but politely, making it clear in the posts that I'm particularly addressing people who have republicans representing them. No clue if it's helping, but it makes me feel like I'm doing something.
    posted by the phlegmatic king at 1:59 PM on August 15 [5 favorites]


    I hope people appreciate what a full-blown national crisis this is. White supremacists are pissing themselves with glee right now. This will only get worse.
    posted by dry white toast at 2:00 PM on August 15 [72 favorites]


    Is there a transcript of the president's remarks anywhere yet? I'm trying to explain to folks on FB what just happened.
    posted by timestep at 2:02 PM on August 15


    I hope people appreciate what a full-blown national crisis this is. White supremacists are pissing themselves with glee right now. This will only get worse.

    I hope so too. This is not just the usual firehose of awful and crazy.
    posted by FelliniBlank at 2:03 PM on August 15 [1 favorite]


    Someone should ask him about the annexation of the Sudetenland.
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 2:04 PM on August 15 [3 favorites]


    Not a transcript, but a lot of the really awful quotes in this WaPo story: Trump again blames both sides in Charlottesville, says some counterprotesters were ‘very, very violent’
    posted by tonycpsu at 2:04 PM on August 15 [6 favorites]


    timestep: the CSPAN link above has an approximate captioning underneath it.
    posted by jessamyn at 2:05 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


    Is there a transcript of the president's remarks anywhere yet? I'm trying to explain to folks on FB what just happened.

    Just send 'em to Daniel Dale's twitter feed. He threaded the whole thing.
    posted by dry white toast at 2:05 PM on August 15


    Will someone more artistically inclined than I am turn the A Confederacy of Dunces cover image into a portrait of DJT instead of IJR? Retitled A Dunce of the Confederacy?
    posted by emelenjr at 2:05 PM on August 15 [5 favorites]


    timestep, CSPAN has captions transcript
    posted by fluttering hellfire at 2:05 PM on August 15 [3 favorites]


    Is there a transcript of the president's remarks anywhere yet? I'm trying to explain to folks on FB what just happened.

    People need to watch and hear and see the entire thing as soon as they can. It was an extended angry rant, and it got worse and worse and worse.
    posted by FelliniBlank at 2:05 PM on August 15 [7 favorites]




    Is there a transcript of the president's remarks anywhere yet? I'm trying to explain to folks on FB what just happened.

    Not transcripts, per se, but articles with extensive quotes: NYT, TPM. The C-Span live stream is archived, too; Kyle Griffin at MSNBC has been pulling out some of the less sane clips, if you want video excerpts.
    posted by cjelli at 2:05 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


    I agree. Watch if you can. Reading quotes doesn't do it justice.
    posted by zachlipton at 2:07 PM on August 15 [10 favorites]


    Politico has a transcript here.

    I am stunned and struggling to try to work.
    posted by prefpara at 2:08 PM on August 15 [5 favorites]


    The Politico transcript isn't complete.
    posted by christopherious at 2:09 PM on August 15 [1 favorite]


    I'm just now watching this because meetings. This is batshitinsane.
    posted by fluttering hellfire at 2:09 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


    MetaFilter: I am stunned and struggling to try to work
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 2:09 PM on August 15 [36 favorites]


    Looks like Trump went a little off-script.
    posted by Talez at 2:09 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


    > Vox deserves blame for a lot of things, but the only uses of alt-left I see on the site are two quotes, and I don't see any uses of that term on Klein or Yglesias's twitters.

    And now Atrios is complaining about these unnamed liberals who apparently have been using alt-left to attack leftists. Where is this meme coming from? Of course some assholes are doing it -- is the claim that Trump wouldn't have used it if they weren't? He turned "fake news" around against his enemies in the media -- of course he was going to try to turn "alt-right" around against the left, with or without assholes using it to try to win an argument about tactics.
    posted by tonycpsu at 2:10 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


    Looks like Trump went a little off-script.

    He went precisely on script. That's a quote from what he said on Saturday. He was reading from it while he was defending his statement. He brought that with him so he could do this.
    posted by zachlipton at 2:11 PM on August 15 [9 favorites]


    So, how long do we think this will hold the record for the most bananas thing a President has ever said on television? Another week?

    The truly remarkable thing is that I have complete certainty we haven't hit rock bottom. Nowhere close.
    posted by dry white toast at 2:11 PM on August 15 [42 favorites]


    The President has previously made a moral equivalency between the United States and the Russian Federation, in terms of their treatment of dissent. Today he made a more explicit moral equivalency between the United States and the Confederate Rebellion.

    I don't want to hear people saying they support this man out of patriotism.
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 2:12 PM on August 15 [37 favorites]


    We regret to inform you that Ethernet is now milkshake duck.

    @BobMetcalfe: Michael Dell, please remain on President Trump's advisory council. Don't cave to fake pressure from leftist "resistance."

    [For context, that was from a couple hours ago, before this press conference]
    posted by zachlipton at 2:13 PM on August 15 [8 favorites]


    A useful read, from Jacobin: "Burying the lie of the 'Alt-Left"'
    posted by standardasparagus at 2:14 PM on August 15 [11 favorites]


    Metcalfe's been a troll for at least 25 years.
    posted by ocschwar at 2:14 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


    Dell, along with General Electric, is one of those companies which depends on government contracts while also being a major consumer brand. It will be interesting to see who goes next.

    I would suggest that all the defense contractors leave at the same time, so Trump won't be able to effectively punish one of them. That's free advice guys, you're welcome
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 2:15 PM on August 15 [13 favorites]


    So . . will this continue turning into the Trumpian Kent State moment?
    posted by rc3spencer at 2:17 PM on August 15 [1 favorite]


    If the 25th was invoked would we be able to suspend all his executive orders and signed bill because they were signed by simeone unfit to be president?

    Acting President Mike Pence would be able to reverse any of Trump's executive orders (or those of any previous president, for that matter), if he so desired.

    Not so for bills signed into law, because those are acts of Congress, and can only be undone by Congress (or a court, if it finds the law unconstitutional).
    posted by DevilsAdvocate at 2:18 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


    yall know that, if fed the term "alt-right," even trump's pea brain is capable of coming up with "alt-left" independently, right? despite what my twitter feed is saying, I don't think liberals 'giving' trump a magic word of power is the worst thing to come out of that press conference
    posted by prize bull octorok at 2:18 PM on August 15 [15 favorites]


    And now Atrios is complaining about these unnamed liberals who apparently have been using alt-left to attack leftists.

    Joy Reid and Sally Albright are two recent culprits in using the term to punch left.
    posted by Existential Dread at 2:18 PM on August 15 [8 favorites]


    I'm not watching (because I value my own sanity), but apparently Fox News is tearing Trump to shreds over what he said.

    If and when the Right does actually turn on him, it will be because he made it impossible to pretend their beliefs and policies were fuelled by anything besides racism.
    posted by dry white toast at 2:18 PM on August 15 [18 favorites]


    Kinja's Public Pool has an incomplete transcript of the highlights, if anyone wants to sanity-check their memory on quotes, but I'd echo zachlipton's comment earlier that if you haven't watched this and want to understand why people are reacting so strongly to it you should watch the actual video. Trump's overall tone and demeanor were unhinged.
    posted by cjelli at 2:19 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


    I'm not watching (because I value my own sanity), but apparently Fox News is tearing Trump to shreds over what he said.

    This lacks the required context of whether it's Shep Smith doing the tearing
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 2:20 PM on August 15 [14 favorites]


    If and when the Right does actually turn on him, it will be because he made it impossible to pretend their beliefs and policies were fuelled by anything besides racism.

    And because (FSM willing) he has made their political project electorally radioactive for at least another generation.
    posted by non canadian guy at 2:24 PM on August 15 [3 favorites]


    OH hey we had a whole conversation about the Alt-Left designation in a previous thread and its application to the "left" dudes who are actively misogynistic and/or Russia shills, but whatever, fuck women and who gives a shit about treason right? Yup, when the piece of shit President with a cesspool of a soul co-opts yet another term for his own Orwellian purposes, as he's done many times before and will do again because he is an amoral liar, let's blame the women for speaking up against misogyny in the first place rather than, you know, the Orwellian Nazi piece of shit.

    Least surprising turn of events ever. Even here. Perhaps especially here.

    Naming the Alt-Left didn't hand 45 a rhetorical weapon; it helped name and define abusers on the left. And 45 will do whatever the fuck he wants because he is the Abuser-In-Chief. Try not to help him do that. We don't need everyone who opposes him to be angels; we need to focus on the fact that he's a FUCKING NAZI.

    I mean, Jesus Christ, that women who spoke up against the Alt-Left are your focus right now -- what the fuck is wrong with you?
    posted by schadenfrau at 2:25 PM on August 15 [61 favorites]


    Imagine being Elaine Chao during that press conference. I wish the camera had been zoomed out a bit so she could be permanently associated with "there were fine people on both sides! they just wanted to defend the leader of a racist rebellion!"
    posted by dis_integration at 2:25 PM on August 15 [9 favorites]


    Today, Donald Trump managed to perfectly encapsulate thousands and thousands of words that have been written and spoken about the nature of white supremacy over the past few decades in just 25 short minutes.

    Very few white supremacists self-identify as such. They talk instead about the preservation of history, they draw false equivalence between those organizing to commit genocide and those who oppose them, they discredit any version of reality that does not comply with their own, and most importantly, they absolutely refuse to engage in anything approaching a nanosecond of reflection and self-criticism.

    But in all honesty, they can't do this on their own. White supremacists like Trump are cushioned on all sides by a wide buffer zone of people who consider themselves to be on the right side of history but nonetheless scold the oppressed for being too angry and lecture people to "stop making this about race; we're all Americans". Those opposing fascism burn so much powder trying to convince ostensible allies (whose solidarity is apparently contingent on playing nice and letting the system take care of itself) that they have little energy left to burn on fighting actual fascists.

    Trump has illustrated quite clearly exactly how you can buoy white supremacy on the spirit of equivocation. After today, it should be clear that Trump isn't trying just to speak to actual fascists; he's also trying to appeal to this pervasive and ugly distortion of reality that committing violence and defending yourself from violence are the exact same thing. Future generations will judge us by whether we choose to continue to embrace that lie or reject it.
    posted by Aya Hirano on the Astral Plane at 2:28 PM on August 15 [95 favorites]


    apparently Fox News is tearing Trump to shreds over what he said.

    presumably he wasn't strident enough?
    posted by entropicamericana at 2:29 PM on August 15 [3 favorites]


    The one thing that surprises me here is that he's still self-aware enough to know that Nazis are bad. He's defending these guys by claiming some of them aren't Nazis.

    He's wrong, of course, and the facts clearly contradict everything he asserts. But he still hasn't gone full fascist: he still won't say that it's ok to be a Nazi.
    posted by suelac at 2:31 PM on August 15 [3 favorites]


    Kyle Griffen has a bunch of individual quotes/moments along with the video on his Twitter feed. Good for context without volume, if that's an issue.
    posted by Room 641-A at 2:32 PM on August 15 [1 favorite]


    Just checking the box, since we all knew this would happen:

    Per sources: Ivanka/Jared among those pushing Trump to more forcefully denounce neo-Nazis, KKK and white nationalists over the weekend... (Glenn Thrush tweet - full text)
    posted by prefpara at 2:32 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


    Yeah, somebody pointed out to him that Nazis would gladly kill Ivanka and Jared if given the chance. That may have gotten through to him.

    But he doesn't give a fuck about any other aspect of this. And if he could see the Nazis giving Ivanka and Jared a pass, I doubt he'd even denounce them this much.
    posted by scaryblackdeath at 2:33 PM on August 15 [1 favorite]




    Annie Karni (@anniekarni) on twitter: Just noticed the use of "us" in this transcript. "Okay, what about the alt-left that came charging at us."
    posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 2:34 PM on August 15 [81 favorites]


    I bet he thinks Ivanka is, you know, not really Jewish.
    posted by PenDevil at 2:35 PM on August 15 [23 favorites]


    Ask your congresscritter to contact Rep. Green and have him amend his articles of impeachment to include Pence.

    That should at least put the fire under Pence's ass to get going on the 25th amendment while he still can.
    posted by ocschwar at 2:36 PM on August 15 [8 favorites]


    Okay, what about the alt-left that came charging at us – excuse me – what about the alt-left that came charging at the, as you say, the alt right? Do they have any semblance of guilt?

    AT US. AT US. AT. US.

    We all know why he made this little "slip of the tongue."
    posted by yasaman at 2:36 PM on August 15 [104 favorites]


    Agreeing that the transcripts don't do it justice. Though it was bad for my composure and I was rocking myself back and forth in my chair by the end of it, I watched the video. It is horrifying. And then I called my reps to ask when they're going to do something about him.
    posted by danielleh at 2:36 PM on August 15 [3 favorites]


    No Trump truly gives a shit about anyone who is not themselves, and I'd include spouses.
    posted by Artw at 2:37 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


    "In fact, the young woman who I hear is a fantastic young women, and it was on NBC, her mother wrote me and said through, I guess, Twitter, social media, the nicest things and I very much appreciate that." (re: Heather Heyer)

    WHAT.
    THE.
    FUCK.
    posted by entropicamericana at 2:37 PM on August 15 [42 favorites]


    I just called Senator Toomey's office* to ask when he is going to address the Trump's racist comments. The staffer was so cranky** and stressed. I'm guessing they just got a ton of irate calls since the press conference.

    Moral of the story: call your members of congress. Put the heat on them for standing with this "president."

    * I can't count the number of times I've said that in the past 7 months.
    ** For those that call the Philly office regularly, no, it wasn't Phil. It was one of the women who is generally quite pleasant.
    posted by mcduff at 2:37 PM on August 15 [12 favorites]


    so, i guess what donald trump is really saying is that if we've all got good jobs we won't have time to bother each other about things like statues
    posted by pyramid termite at 2:39 PM on August 15 [3 favorites]


    @maggieNYT: We had been told Potus wasn't doing questions. He chose to overrule staff

    I love this. He was just so darn tootin' mad that he didn't get enough praise for his lukewarm statement yesterday that he decided fuck it, I'm perfect, only idiots don't know how awesome the thoughts I have are, the lefties were just as bad as the Nazis, let's do this shit. By the way, I've got a house in Charlottesville, you fucks.
    posted by dis_integration at 2:40 PM on August 15 [49 favorites]


    Annie Karni (@anniekarni) on twitter: Just noticed the use of "us" in this transcript. "Okay, what about the alt-left that came charging at us."

    The transcript quotes him like that, and you guys know I never ever want to give this guy the benefit of the doubt on anything, but listen to the clip for yourself. I'm not convinced that bit of the transcript is accurate.
    posted by zachlipton at 2:41 PM on August 15 [19 favorites]


    I'm watching the press conference and I'm not seeing him say 'at us'
    posted by gofargogo at 2:42 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


    Anne Frank Center @AnneFrankCenter
    Dear @Twitter corporate: He is an accomplice to domestic terrorism. If you can't end @POTUS account, at least end @realDonaldTrump account.
    7:12 AM · Aug 15, 2017
    posted by Room 641-A at 2:42 PM on August 15 [97 favorites]


    The other transcript has "them," though I don't have the stomach to listen to any more of the video.
    posted by cui bono at 2:42 PM on August 15 [1 favorite]


    I'm watching the press conference and I'm not seeing him say 'at us'

    It seems like "at em".
    posted by Talez at 2:45 PM on August 15 [3 favorites]


    Just woke up from a nap. Did I miss anything?

    ...

    Holy shit.
    posted by Barack Spinoza at 2:45 PM on August 15 [25 favorites]


    Yeah, I listened to it three times and I hear it as "at 'em."
    posted by obliviax at 2:46 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


    (Still fucking gross.)
    posted by obliviax at 2:47 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


    I agree that he said "at 'em". Plenty to condemn this man for without the inaccurate transcription.
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 2:47 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


    Trump just compared Jefferson and Washington morally to the Confederates. Literally.

    After explaining how Jefferson/Washington were British and went against their rulers the next boogieman of The Masons will be brought up and how they also didn't cheerfully follow their leader per THAT oath.

    the Orwellian Nazi

    Someone go dig up Eric Blair, strap magnets to the corpse, wrap the grave with copper and re-bury to gather the energy from his spinning over those words together.
    posted by rough ashlar at 2:49 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


    It hadn't occured to me that the President's very sensible and politically-moderating Jewish family members have not been able to persuade him to convincingly oppose people holding Nazi flags, but yeah that is a thing that is happening
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 2:49 PM on August 15 [15 favorites]


    And now the AFL-CIO is leaving Trump's manufacturing council. Took long enough.
    posted by zachlipton at 2:50 PM on August 15 [93 favorites]


    The "us" is very much there in spirit.
    posted by Artw at 2:51 PM on August 15 [3 favorites]


    I look forward to seeing how badly Trump's HoP robots get vandalized one day.
    posted by obtuser at 2:51 PM on August 15 [3 favorites]


    If Trump is removed from office he'll metamorphose into the full blown aggrieved leader of a resurgent Nazi MAGA party. I still want him gone asap but it's not going to end this nightmare.
    posted by theodolite at 2:51 PM on August 15 [9 favorites]


    AFL-CIO is out...hi Zach....

    props to them for the very harsh statement
    posted by lalex at 2:51 PM on August 15 [11 favorites]


    Ryan, McConnell, and others will "object" and have "concerns" about this, of course. The same sort of objections Robert E. Lee had to slavery.
    posted by scaryblackdeath at 2:52 PM on August 15 [6 favorites]


    Richard Trumka of the AFL-CIO: I cannot sit on a council for a President that tolerates bigotry and domestic terrorism; I resign, effective immediately.
    posted by FelliniBlank at 2:52 PM on August 15 [70 favorites]


    If Trump is removed from office he'll metamorphose into the full blown aggrieved leader of a resurgent Nazi MAGA party.

    No, he won't. He'll just go back to looking for other countries to borrow money from so that he can build more golf courses.
    posted by Melismata at 2:52 PM on August 15 [6 favorites]


    Yeah it's pretty amazing that some billionaire CEOs were able to bail on Trump before the supposed core of the US labor unions did.
    posted by Aya Hirano on the Astral Plane at 2:53 PM on August 15 [27 favorites]


    No, he won't. He'll just go back to looking for other countries to borrow money from so that he can build more golf courses.

    He won't find any.
    posted by ocschwar at 2:53 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


    I'm sort of sympathetic for unions wanting to stick around and influence policy and not be victims of a right-wing government, but yeah, there are limits that have been enthusiastically broken.
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 2:55 PM on August 15 [10 favorites]


    You know, it's bad when as of this post WTFJHT can't keep up.
    posted by The Power Nap at 2:56 PM on August 15 [13 favorites]


    It hadn't occured to me that the President's very sensible and politically-moderating Jewish family members have not been able to persuade him to convincingly oppose people holding Nazi flags, but yeah that is a thing that is happening

    Don't worry, they told Glenn Thrush at the NYT that they really really tried to get him to denounce Nazis. Like super really tried.
    posted by PenDevil at 2:58 PM on August 15 [2 favorites]


    I'm glad the CEOs resigning from the manufacturing council now recognize the guy who spent years pushing the racist birther conspiracy theory, who seems to have picked Ben Carson to be HUD Secretary only because he's black, who spent years calling for the deaths of the Central Park Five, who discriminated against blacks in his housing complexes, who has riled up Nazis across America, might not have totally great opinions on race in America.

    This isn't news to anyone who's been paying attention. Maybe they should do some cursory research next time.
    posted by 0xFCAF at 2:58 PM on August 15 [44 favorites]


    Dell's income is from a market where competition is fierce, and many of their competitors will not be seen as enabling Nazism. But a lot of their revenue also comes from the federal government. But perhaps this president will not be around for so long. This must be an agonizing decision for Michael Dell! My advice is to think about what Hitler would do, and do the opposite.
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 2:58 PM on August 15 [8 favorites]


    I'm sort of sympathetic for unions wanting to stick around and influence policy

    If Kelly couldn't stop Trump from getting out in front of cameras and blathering this sort of racist shit, what chance do union leaders have of influencing him on any sort of policy? At all?
    posted by scaryblackdeath at 2:59 PM on August 15 [24 favorites]


    No, he won't. He'll just go back to looking for other countries to borrow money from so that he can build more golf courses.

    I think he loves constant cable news coverage of his face and screaming crowds even more than he loves money. But even if you're right, the millions of fascists in this country have tasted power and they're not going to hide anymore.
    posted by theodolite at 2:59 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


    Everyone's been aware Trump is a vile racist. They were just hoping he'd have the sense to keep a lid on it to some degree, and he forced their hand.
    posted by Aya Hirano on the Astral Plane at 3:00 PM on August 15 [15 favorites]


    Has any media person ever asked him, "HOW do you check what's a fact? HOW do you check that your sources are credible? Do you check Fox against Breitbart against InfoWars?"

    Shine a fucking light on the fact that he is their mouthpiece, for fuck's sake. Who do I need to tweet at to ask this? Maggie Haberman?
    posted by cybercoitus interruptus at 3:00 PM on August 15 [18 favorites]


    > "He ends with: 'All men are created equal' is an ideological statement. Where is the scientific or historic proof for it?"

    Some of us hold that truth to be self-evident, Pat.
    posted by kyrademon at 3:00 PM on August 15 [77 favorites]




    Has any media person ever asked him, "HOW do you check what's a fact? HOW do you check that your sources are credible? Do you check Fox against Breitbart against InfoWars?"

    Has any media person ever got to finish a question? EXCUSE ME. Hand gestures. Talks about how bigly he is, you fake news person, and moves on.
    posted by Elmore at 3:05 PM on August 15 [6 favorites]


    Trumo: Is it murder? Is it terrorism? Then you get into legal semantics."

    Legal semantics? That's...not how it works?

    IANAL.
    posted by Room 641-A at 3:05 PM on August 15


    Yeah it's pretty amazing that some billionaire CEOs were able to bail on Trump before the supposed core of the US labor unions did.

    In the unions' defense, shit has been happening really fast, and mostly over a weekend.
    posted by mr_roboto at 3:05 PM on August 15 [7 favorites]


    National Treasure Charles P. Pierce of Esquire: Maybe Next Time Stick to the Notes

    After the president* took his sojourn into the izonkosphere on Tuesday afternoon, CNN cut back to Tapper, who looked very much like a man who had seen space aliens humping in his jacuzzi. I give him credit for having been able to say anything at all. I sat there in silent awe and petrified wonder for a good two minutes.

    All the hinges are gone now. The rails are far behind. The trolley is missing and presumed lost. The president* came down to the lobby of his Manhattan tower, ostensibly to sign an executive order on "infrastructure." He then took questions and we all went on a magic carpet ride through what he really thinks about the events in Charlottesville last weekend. For three days, whatever sensible people remain at Camp Runamuck have been trying to find some way to run damage control on the president*'s initial, ridiculous non-response to those events, whereupon, on Tuesday, the president* stepped up to the mic and blew all that work into tiny bits. Quite simply, the only president* we have lost his shit so badly on live TV that he'll never be able to find it again.

    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 3:09 PM on August 15 [58 favorites]


    Has any media person ever got to finish a question? EXCUSE ME. Hand gestures. Talks about how bigly he is, you fake news person, and moves on.

    I've fantasized myself about the One Weird Old Question To Destroy Trump but yeah, he treats questions as themes to riff on rather than requests for specific information.
    posted by theodolite at 3:10 PM on August 15 [7 favorites]


    In the unions' defense, shit has been happening really fast, and mostly over a weekend.

    Would that last weekend was the only time Trump gave representatives of the working class reason to refuse to cooperate in the first place, let alone sever ties.
    posted by Aya Hirano on the Astral Plane at 3:11 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


    I'm afraid this is going to be the first of many Kent State Moments for the President.
    posted by notyou at 3:12 PM on August 15 [5 favorites]


    Journalists aren't willing to humiliate themselves sufficiently to ask him the truly damaging questions. "Mr President, what are your favorite things about the Confederacy?" "Mr President, what are the advantages of having a Caucasian genetic heritage?"
    posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 3:13 PM on August 15 [10 favorites]


    The other day I joked with Mrs. nushustu that next year the Dems should run w/ the motto "Vote Democrat if for no other reason than we're NOT the Nazi party."

    Now it's not even a joke.
    posted by nushustu at 3:13 PM on August 15 [7 favorites]


    goddamn, this was broadcast into space and aliens are going to see it

    I know that's not an imminent or maybe real concern, but Jesus, the thought makes me want to hide.
    posted by angrycat at 3:14 PM on August 15 [25 favorites]


    This must be an agonizing decision for Michael Dell! My advice is to think about what Hitler would do, and do the opposite.

    Hey, say what you like about Michael Dell, but he had some pretty good ideas.
    posted by thelonius at 3:15 PM on August 15 [4 favorites]


    Has any media person ever got to finish a question? EXCUSE ME. Hand gestures. Talks about how bigly he is, you fake news person, and moves on.

    Very much this. I'm sure even his sit-down interviews are heavily vetted. This is why most of the great reporting on Trump is happening from behind a desk. Press conferences are pretty much just an opportunity to rustle his jimmies into saying something outrageous, which you can apparently do without really trying.
    posted by Aya Hirano on the Astral Plane at 3:16 PM on August 15 [1 favorite]


    No, he won't. He'll just go back to looking for other countries to borrow money from so that he can build more golf courses.

    Once his grift runs out, his goose is cooked. He's in debt up to his eyeballs to some very nasty people, who will call his debts in. Those propping him up will cut him loose. Metaphorically, he can expect to end up like Mussolini, Ceausescu or Gaddafi, and, on some level, he probably knows it.

    And that's the frightening thing: if it's a choice between swinging, alone, from a lamp post on piano wire, or using his supreme executive power to extinguish the failing human race in a big bang (by, say, ordering a massive nuclear strike on his creditors in Moscow, guaranteeing automatic massive retaliation), would Trump really have the humility to choose the former?
    posted by acb at 3:17 PM on August 15 [25 favorites]


    Kushner Cos faces lawsuit claiming rent overcharging in New York (Reuters/Raw Story)
    The lawsuit is based on an investigation of the building by Housing Rights Initiative, a tenant-rights advocacy group. The organization’s founder, Aaron Carr, said the Kushner Cos rented units for about $2,500 per month but tenants should have been charged substantially less than that.

    Lucas Ferrara, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, said the building’s rent-stabilized status was easy to ascertain through due diligence. “It is our contention that this private owner either intentionally or indifferently failed to follow the regulations of the rent law,” he said.
    NBC Breaking: WH officials say Trump went rogue, are "stunned" (<-- not verbatim)
    posted by Room 641-A at 3:19 PM on August 15 [8 favorites]


    Journalists aren't willing to humiliate themselves sufficiently to ask him the truly damaging questions. "Mr President, what are your favorite things about the Confederacy?"

    Someone did repeatedly ask him if he supported the confederacy. He didn't answer.
    posted by zachlipton at 3:20 PM on August 15 [36 favorites]


    goddamn, this was broadcast into space and aliens are going to see it

    He w