You can’t count votes that never got a chance to be cast
December 9, 2016 10:00 AM   Subscribe

With six weeks to the inauguration of the current President-elect, the son of a Hebridean continues to make the press. Across a smorgasbord of controversy, Boeing and China and a union leader are tweet-called out, Taiwan are on the phone, Ben Carson has (awkward) a top job, Flynn jnr is out but Flynn snr stays in while Goldman Sachs is further in, Mr Coal is given the EPA, Coulter wavers, his wall may not be built after all, and conflicts of interests (one picked at random). Problems with the recent election such as interference and voter suppression (post title) (also, game) continue to be discussed while Jill et al continue with their recount battle. Elsewhere, think pieces about the Democratic party abound, and Hillary continues to stack up the votes. Also California, Biden for 2020, a large bipartisan bill heads Obama's way, some Federal bureaucrats are waiting to see what happens and a prophecy.

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MetaTalk
* MeFi in the time of Trump - managing news.
* What are YOU doing?
* MeFites offering refuge for the holidays and Friendsmas.
* 123: NOT ME THAT DAY (monthly podcast).

For legacy content see the many posts tagged with election2016. The election reference wiki explains some of the terminology used in comments on these threads.

On the Blue
* Donald Trump is Time's 2016 Person of the Year.
* “A new president, new justice appointees changed the dynamic".
* What your social-media news feed could look like if things go wrong (not the new election thread).

A few of Andy Borowitz's recent short pieces: Taxes, Chris Christie, Obama and Trump, Ben Carson, and a poll.
posted by Wordshore (2771 comments total) 94 users marked this as a favorite
 
and a reminder to concentrate on yrrr breathing ...
posted by philip-random at 10:02 AM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


A lot of polls have been making the rounds, and I worry that they won't have as much of an effect in disciplining the Trump people or the Republicans in legislature because they will think that Trump has some special magic such that polls just don't matter, on the theory that the polls got the election outcome wrong. Another check on power weakened. There are also people coming into power now who openly dismiss the need for the consent of the governed. So that's what's on my mind today, happy Friday!
posted by prefpara at 10:05 AM on December 9, 2016




Yaaay! New election threa*uncontrollable vomiting*
posted by mrjohnmuller at 10:07 AM on December 9, 2016 [85 favorites]


Give it a chance.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 10:09 AM on December 9, 2016 [16 favorites]


Also, now that the election is over, can I propose that the new shared tag for political posts be #dissolutionoftheempire?
posted by DirtyOldTown at 10:10 AM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]




See also: Permit won't be issued for the Jan 21 protest event. Women's March on Washington Won't Happen at Lincoln Memorial (Warning autoplay video)
posted by yoga at 10:15 AM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Surprise! Obamacare Repeal Includes a Stealth Tax Cut for Top Earners
Republican plans to repeal the Affordable Care Act without a replacement — which health care policy experts predict could cost 30 million people their health insurance — will also bring a major tax break for high-income Americans.

Two taxes that will be presumably axed with the law affect only those making $200,000 or more. The break the ACA repeal will bring to those taxpayers will amount to a $346 billion tax cut in total over 10 years, according to the CBO report on the 2015 repeal legislation GOP lawmakers say they’ll be using as their model next year.
posted by kirkaracha at 10:15 AM on December 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


With six weeks to the inauguration of the current President-elect

Fuck.

Gonna be a really, really long four years, isn't it?
posted by zarq at 10:16 AM on December 9, 2016 [33 favorites]


This may have been in the last thread, but I'm trying to wean myself off of these so I don't know. But if you haven't seen this, enjoy or scream, whatever works for you: corrupt.af -- a new website compiling all of Trump's conficts of interest.
posted by not that mimi at 10:16 AM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]




Possibly the most disturbing story yet from the transition phase: Trump transition team for Energy Department seeks names of employees involved in climate meetings

Spoiler: Probably not to give them holiday bonuses.
posted by martin q blank at 10:17 AM on December 9, 2016 [50 favorites]


Give him a chance
posted by Mayor West at 10:17 AM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


Inauguration Day is shaping up to be a potential nightmare in so many different ways, isn't it?
posted by yellowbinder at 10:18 AM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Gonna be a really, really long four years, isn't it?

come on yellowstone caldera
posted by poffin boffin at 10:21 AM on December 9, 2016 [74 favorites]


the son of a Hebridean

I've noticed a lot of people using various ways to avoid saying Donald Trump's name, and it reminds me a lot of how in Harry Potter people didn't say "Voldemort". And then I remembered how Dumbledore said "Fear of a name increases fear of the thing itself" so you should just say his name. Then I remembered that everyone was right not to say "Voldemort" because they'd cast a curse on the name so they could find and imprison anyone who said it so it was good not to say the name! Then I remembered that we're not wizards so we're okay because you can't put a curse on words like that! Then I remembered how our civil liberties are under attack and how maybe it will indeed become illegal to criticize Donald Trump! Then I remembered about the NSA tracking all of our phone calls and emails and stuff so maybe they'll actually know exactly when anyone says "Donald Trump"! Then I got super depressed! Boy this is all really effing terrible!
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 10:22 AM on December 9, 2016 [183 favorites]


Obama orders review of Russian hacking in 2016 election

How shitty that I literally checked to see if this was from the Onion. I'm glad it's not!
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 10:24 AM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


A link of despair:

Thank one group of companies for the stock market's climb to record highs
The stock market's dramatic surge to record highs can largely be attributed to the leap in bank stocks. . . . Goldman Sachs has accounted for nearly a third of the Dow Jones industrial average's gains since the election.
And a link of hope:

'Miracles Are Happening': Photos of the Tireless Women of Standing Rock
I'm here also because my children can't be here. I'm going to go home and tell them everything I've seen, so that when my time of not-travelling comes they will be able to go out and do that for me. Even though I'm a great grandmother, I took my own pension [from being a] retired teacher and made the journey. It's all worth it, being here and sharing with the women our songs and the water prayers. ~ Beatrice Menasekwe Jackson
posted by melissasaurus at 10:25 AM on December 9, 2016 [16 favorites]


The only polls that matter to the GOP are the ones taken on the second Tuesday in November in years divisible by two or four. What people think about what they do is completely irrelevant to them- what matters is only whether they have the power to do it.
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:25 AM on December 9, 2016 [34 favorites]


Show up on the 21st anyway. Go ahead and arrest a million cell phones
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:26 AM on December 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


I need these threads like I need air to breathe. I understand that outrage and despair are not everyone's cup of tea (nor necessarily the healthiest use of everybody's time) but to me they're a constant reminder that THIS. IS. NOT. NORMAL. and sanity still exists in the world.

So thank you, metafilter.
posted by lydhre at 10:28 AM on December 9, 2016 [90 favorites]


ahhh, I love to read the posts of David "Axis of Evil" Frum in these trying time's
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 10:29 AM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


i couldn't figure out why i was feeling nauseated every morning lately and then i realized it was from seeing the disgusting bloated vile face of the rapist-in-chief elect on the news every morning.
posted by poffin boffin at 10:32 AM on December 9, 2016 [43 favorites]


"I need these threads like I need air to breathe."

Agreed. When the election threads stop, the bass solo begins.
posted by klarck at 10:34 AM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


Ohio Politician Who Lobbied for ‘Heartbeat Bill’ Has ‘Never Thought About’ Why a Woman Would Want an Abortion
Buchy is a longtime proponent of restricting women’s access to abortion — in 2012, he told Al Jazeera that his ultimate goal is to ban abortion completely in the State of Ohio. Then, the reporter asked him an interesting question: “What do you think makes a woman want to have an abortion?”

He pauses. Then he says, “Well, there’s probably a lot of reas— I’m not a woman.” He laughs. “I’m thinking now if I’m a woman why would I want to get … Some of it has to do with economics. A lot of it has to do with economics. I don’t know. It’s a question I’ve never even thought about.”
If you were looking for a mind at work, this isn't it.
posted by zachlipton at 10:34 AM on December 9, 2016 [228 favorites]


poffin boffin, and that is exactly why I stopped watching the news the evening of November 8th. It's going to be a long, long four years.
posted by lydhre at 10:34 AM on December 9, 2016 [16 favorites]




10 Crucial Decisions That Reshaped America
Together, these choices, combined with lightning flashes of luck and happenstance, added up to the biggest surprise in a year of shocks. Here, then, are 10 decisions that defined the 2016 campaign—and changed the course of American history
posted by kirkaracha at 10:35 AM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


I remember Obama's inauguration committee opening the mall up for bystanders in 2008 and 2012, not sure if anyone can recall if protestors were allowed? Or if anyone even tried to show up to protest.
posted by Slackermagee at 10:35 AM on December 9, 2016


i couldn't figure out why i was feeling nauseated every morning lately and then i realized it was from seeing the disgusting bloated vile face of the rapist-in-chief elect on the news every morning.

Huh. I thought my motion sickness was just getting more frequent and severe but the same place I feel sick (on the Metro) is also the same place I read the newspaper (well, the Express) so upon reflection this is a very real possibility for me as well. Thanks for mentioning it?
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 10:37 AM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


I've noticed a lot of people using various ways to avoid saying Donald Trump's name

We tried to avoid it in my house because we've got a four year old and I didn't want to hear him jabber about it. Alas, the environment at large eventually had its way with his brain. Even before the election, the four year old knew the name and the face. Didn't know who Clinton was, though. That says something about the media's balance.

Upside: without any prompting or hints from any older people, as far as we can tell, the four year old did perch a plush weasel on his head and declare that he "looked like Donald Trump now." I was sniggering, proud, and horrified all at once.
posted by Western Infidels at 10:41 AM on December 9, 2016 [43 favorites]


come on yellowstone caldera

BIG MONEY NO WHAMM-

BIG WHAMMIES, NO MONEY

That really doesn't work, either.
posted by zarq at 10:42 AM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


GOP Chair of the House subcommittee on Social Security just introduced a new bill to massively cut SS benefits: [tweets below from this thread]

--Most workers would see their benefits cut by more than 10 percent.

--Many would suffer even deeper cuts. For example, benefits to workers making about 50k would shrink by between 11 and 35%! 35 percent!!

--Some very low income workers get held harmless, but not all. Worker at $12k who only has 14 years of work history gets cut up to ~50%!!
posted by melissasaurus at 10:43 AM on December 9, 2016 [22 favorites]


I haven't watched the news since it happened. Even Parks and Rec reruns make too sad, at this point. The election arcs are...rough.

Otoh I'm reading a lot more books, so.
posted by schadenfrau at 10:43 AM on December 9, 2016 [19 favorites]


Obama orders review of Russian hacking in 2016 election

Next up: Trump sues to prevent the publication of the Russian election hacking report.

Or just to hold it up until the 21st, when he can cast it down the memory hole.
posted by acb at 10:45 AM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


I understand that outrage and despair are not everyone's cup of tea (nor necessarily the healthiest use of everybody's time) but to me they're a constant reminder that THIS. IS. NOT. NORMAL. and sanity still exists in the world.

Is it a bad idea to make "THIS. IS. NOT. NORMAL." into a thread tag?
posted by ZeusHumms at 10:48 AM on December 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


Also I had a hard time with the last thread title because I kept rewriting it in my head as "He has neither the temperament nor the crayons ..."
posted by ZeusHumms at 10:50 AM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


"I haven't watched the news since it happened."

This. I've stopped reading the NY Times, The Guardian, Washington Post - papers I used to read online non-stop all day. Now, I can only take the news in small bites. Everyday there is a new dose of unpleasantness with each deplorable appointee. I search now for non-news and humor sites.

And so I'm reading more books too. I highly recommend A Man Called Ove. Also, I'm Judging You.

It's hard not to feel powerless.
posted by shoesietart at 10:55 AM on December 9, 2016 [20 favorites]



Six donors that Trump appointed gave almost $12 million with their families to back his campaign and the party
Together with their families, Trump's nominees gave $11.6 million to support his presidential bid, his allied super PACs and the Republican National Committee, according to a Washington Post analysis of federal campaign filings. One single appointee — WWE co-founder Linda McMahon — contributed $7.5 million to back his White House run before Trump selected her to run the Small Business Administration this week. She and her husband Vince were also the top outside donors to Trump's private foundation.
...
But longtime watchers of money in politics cannot recall any president in recent history who has filled a Cabinet with so many major donors. “In the past, they were a little hidden — they were sent overseas to be ambassadors,” said David Donnelly, president of Every Voice, an advocacy group that seeks to reduce the influence of wealthy donors on politics. “In this administration, they are going to be front and center making policy.”
posted by zachlipton at 10:56 AM on December 9, 2016 [24 favorites]


From the Trump transition team for Energy Department seeks names of employees involved in climate meetings WaPo story that martin q blank posted above:
The questionnaire also appeared to take aim at the national laboratories, which operate with a high degree of independence but which are part of the Energy Department. The questionnaire asked for a list of the top 20 salaried employees of the labs, the labs’ peer-reviewed publications over the past three years, a list of their professional society memberships, affiliations, and the websites they maintain or contribute to “during work hours.”
DoE national labs include Argonne, Brookhaven, Fermilab, LLBL, SLAC [Stanford linear accelerator], &c. -- all the major high-energy physics labs. What the fuck.

I want to see the APS & AIP scream about this.
posted by Westringia F. at 10:57 AM on December 9, 2016 [58 favorites]


...it reminds me a lot of how in Harry Potter people didn't say "Voldemort". And then I remembered how Dumbledore said "Fear of a name increases fear of the thing itself" so you should just say his name.

A colleague of mine mentioned how That Name was being to justify and bolster the vilest statements of hate. He said, it's basically a racial slur.
posted by BrashTech at 10:58 AM on December 9, 2016 [12 favorites]


After another surreal week of things happening that I did not want to happen, here are some things I would like to see happen:

1. California serves as a model of progressive American governance.

The good new here is that Democrats regained their 2/3 super majority. I'll reiterate my earlier wish that California, together with other blue states, make good on their vows to stand up to Trump and offset any Trump tax cuts at the federal level with raises in state taxes. Disrupt another massive transfer of resources from the public coffers to the wealthy and their investment advisors by redirecting them to state governments where they can fund state-run health care programs, public education, public sector jobs, and other programs which benefit society as a whole.

2. Protest marches erupt around Inauguration Day.

And unify in a simple chant that echoes across the nation: TRUMP IS A CLOWN. It will get under his thin skin. It will flummox his supporters. And it is already becoming prophecy fulfilled. There was a pretty good On The Media interview with George Lakoff where he talks about the power of rhetorical framing. Keep Trump abnormal!

3. Democratic Party organizes for 2018.

To repeat something SecretAgentSockpuppet once said: the leftish party needs to find and train candidates. I hope Democrats are working on this.

I want Democrats to stand up fiercely against Republican hypocrisy in Congress and tie every Republican congressman to the Trump administration. I'm not sure they can do much else in Washington. Keep pushing the swamp creature talk. Make sure Republicans are held accountable for their failures.

And I want Democrats to aim to match or exceed their 2016 turnout in 2018. Impossible, yes. But make that the goal. Focus on that number. They've got a great ground game from everything I hear. Hillary did win the popular vote. Still, I think it would help rally the electorate to frame the problem around some big simple important number, like it was a high score in Pacman or something.

What will I be doing?

1. Keep following these threads.
2. Get at least one extra person who didn't vote in 2016 to vote in 2018 (and make sure the ones that did do). I'm in California so it may not make much difference nationally, but it could make a big difference locally with the super-majority on the line.
3. Contribute to organizations that work to counter the forces of Trumpness: Planned Parenthood, the Southern Poverty Law Center, the Sierra Club, my local NPR stations, the Democratic Party.

I'd like to think it'd be enough in a well-functioning democracy. So, yeah, probably not enough.
posted by bunbury at 10:59 AM on December 9, 2016 [42 favorites]


Here's my plan for revolution:

1. Get legislation passed which says votes are people.
2. Get further legislation passed which says votes become people at the point of conception.
3. Get further legislation passed which equates voter suppression with state-induced abortion.
4. Wait for life to imitate the end of Logan's Run.
posted by grumpybear69 at 10:59 AM on December 9, 2016 [16 favorites]


the son of a Hebridean

I've noticed a lot of people using various ways to avoid saying Donald Trump's name


Aye. I'm fed up of typing it in posts and seeing it everywhere, hence a minor aim of this post was to have his name as few times as possible.

The Hebridean thing is also because An Asal has been, is, and probably will remain a frequent talking point amongst Hebrideans; or at least the ones I chat with online (some of them old neighbors, and a few distant relatives). Knocking him is fine; there aren't many who have a kind word for him, especially after his disrespectful visit last decade. He isn't viewed as "one of us", and the general feeling seems to be one of mild embarrassment.

However, his mother is a different matter. His cousins are still getting harassed by journalists making the trip to Lewis on a frequent basis, as are the people in the local shops. While it's a small financial benefit for the local accommodation, car hire and taxi businesses, Hebrideans are extremely wise to the ways of the print media, after generations of being stung and stereotyped in the press. A confident prediction for 2017 is that at least one journalist sniffing around Leòdhas for a sleazy angle on Mary MacLeod (mother of the US President-Elect) is going to get the shit beaten out of him one night. It happens.
posted by Wordshore at 11:00 AM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


A little good news:

States Are Decoupling Their Emissions From Economic Growth—Federal Policy Be Damned
In other words: Our next president does matter, but the trend toward decarbonization will likely happen with or without his explicit support.
Analysis: What global emissions in 2016 mean for climate change goals
The Global Carbon Project’s results tentatively suggest CO2 emissions from fossil fuels may be showing signs of peaking. But in this tumultuous political climate, is it a trend we’re likely to see continue?
posted by Existential Dread at 11:00 AM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


DoE national labs include Argonne, Brookhaven, Fermilab, LLBL, SLAC [Stanford linear accelerator], &c. -- all the major high-energy physics labs. What the fuck.

Trump is probably working out a plan to achieve that coal fusion he's heard we're twenty years away from.
posted by peeedro at 11:02 AM on December 9, 2016 [17 favorites]


Six donors that Trump appointed gave almost $12 million with their families to back his campaign and the party

After all the nonsense Clinton dealt with about the supposed "pay-to-play" arrangements at the Clinton Foundation, this is just infuriating. People literally bought Cabinet positions with donations.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 11:03 AM on December 9, 2016 [102 favorites]


Well, this post puts me in the holiday spirit. *sigh*
posted by terrapin at 11:04 AM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


Yes but money is speech so they're actually just vocal supporters
posted by beerperson at 11:05 AM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


> The Hebridean thing is also because An Asal has been, is, and probably will remain a frequent talking point amongst Hebrideans

An Asal. That's absolutely class, that is how I will refer to him from now on. :)
posted by LN at 11:08 AM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


Tess Rafferty, ladies and gentlemen.
posted by pxe2000 at 11:14 AM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


If Dems/libs can't win on the Social Security cuts, I don't see any hope for anything else. Literally the fucking third rail of American politics.
posted by longdaysjourney at 11:16 AM on December 9, 2016 [12 favorites]


Here's the report of the Social Security Chief Actuary on H.R. 6489, the bill the Chairman of the Social Security Subcommittee introduced today.

One of the most significant things about this bill is that it doesn't follow the normal pattern of "nothing will change for older folks, but young people will get screwed" that normally applies to such efforts. It starts phasing in a "new benefit formula" in just seven years from now. It would also keep increasing the retirement age, eventually to 69, and provide 0 cost of living adjustment for those with incomes above a threshold, and a lower cost of living adjustment for those below that threshold, starting in 2018!

And it would reduce taxes on high income earners, because why not?

This is fucked up.
posted by zachlipton at 11:17 AM on December 9, 2016 [62 favorites]


Josh Marshall has some initial analysis as well.
posted by zachlipton at 11:18 AM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Soon it will be remarkable when a bill DOESN'T include a tax cut on high income earners.
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:19 AM on December 9, 2016 [15 favorites]




Mainstream Media Puts Out the Call for Pro-Trump Columnists [are we still doing "real" tags? because believe it or not, this is real]
“We struggled to find voices that could advocate for Donald Trump’s ideas,” said James Bennet, the Times’ editorial-page editor. “It was really unusual. It didn’t help that the conservative intelligentsia lined up against him.” But Bennet says Trump’s campaign contributed to the imbalance: “He didn’t have the people around him who were prepared to put together his arguments” for publication.

Lynn Hicks, the Des Moines Register’s opinion editor, found a parallel at his newspaper, the largest in the swing state that wound up going for Trump. “Given that almost all of our Republican leadership in Iowa supported Trump, I kept waiting for [supportive op-ed] pieces to arrive,” Hicks said. “I’m still waiting.”
The problem is not, as NYT editor James Bennet suggests, that the papers "owe it to [their] readers to help them hear the voices that were supportive of Trump", but that our free press owes us a critical and objective reporting and analysis of the news. Anything else is propaganda.
posted by Doktor Zed at 11:22 AM on December 9, 2016 [35 favorites]


“He didn’t have the people around him who were prepared to put together his arguments”

I'm sure David Duke would be ready and willing.
posted by dis_integration at 11:26 AM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Any paper publishing fascist apologia framed as anything other than "look what these evil shits believe" should be shuttered and burned.
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:28 AM on December 9, 2016 [63 favorites]


Here's the report of the Social Security Chief Actuary on H.R. 6489, the bill the Chairman of the Social Security Subcommittee introduced today.

Cutting benefits to prevent a shortfall that was only ever a problem in that would cause benefit cuts is putting the cart so far ahead of the horse that the barn door hasn't even been unlocked. This is even worse than I was expecting (something I now expect, ironically, to be saying often these days), and that report is well worth a read.
posted by cjelli at 11:29 AM on December 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


Michigan Tries to Rush Voter ID Law through Lame-Duck Session (Project Vote)

Something to call about, if you are so inclined. I will probably call the governor's office if it passes, despite being from California, because yolo
posted by sunset in snow country at 11:30 AM on December 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


I'd take some grim satisfaction in my near-retirement-age Trump-loving relatives getting screwed on their SS/Medicaid/Medicare, if it weren't for all the nice people getting hurt at the same time.
posted by emjaybee at 11:32 AM on December 9, 2016 [18 favorites]


Leopard-eaten faces for the members of the Leopards Eating People's Faces party, bleachers and popcorn for others!
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:33 AM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


are we still doing 'real' tags? because believe it or not, this is real
Regret to inform that "real" died on November 8, 2016, after a long illness.

posted by kirkaracha at 11:34 AM on December 9, 2016 [53 favorites]


"There is, in fact, some historical precedent for a president surrounding himself with such a group of self-interested power-grabbers, but you’d have to return to Warren G. Harding’s administration in the early 1920s to find it. The “Roaring Twenties” that ended explosively in a stock market collapse in 1929 began, ominously enough, with a presidency filled with similar figures, as well as policies remarkably similar to those now being promised under Trump, including major tax cuts and giveaways for corporations and the deregulation of Wall Street."

I'm surprised that more people aren't looking back to the Harding administration for what a Trump presidency will look like. I'm pretty sure this is the first I've read.
posted by indubitable at 11:34 AM on December 9, 2016 [15 favorites]


Also, some of the "saved" Carrier jobs likely to be automated away, the company admits.

Like all []'s deals, this one gets worse by the day.
posted by emjaybee at 11:34 AM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


I'd take some grim satisfaction in my near-retirement-age Trump-loving relatives getting screwed on their SS/Medicaid/Medicare, if it weren't for all the nice people getting hurt at the same time.

Hee hee. I called my dad's representative (Michelle Lujan Grisham, D-Albuquerque) to ask her to fight Medicare cuts. It was quite a different experience from calling Nancy Pelosi (my rep) - I talked to a human, gave her my name, and then she asked for my dad's name (!). I gave it and did not mention that he's a Republican who would be extremely annoyed if he knew I was calling.
posted by sunset in snow country at 11:36 AM on December 9, 2016 [23 favorites]


3. Democratic Party organizes for 2018.

So, I heard this episode of BBC Trending [18m] that described how Duterte's social media campaign ran, and I found it informative and oddly inspiring. Surely the Left can use these same tactics here.
posted by hippybear at 11:38 AM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]




Mainstream Media Puts Out the Call for Pro-Trump Columnists

I was just going to post on this, because Brian Beutler has it right here. Early in the campaign, the networks, especially CNN, discovered that their normal panel of conservative pundits all despised Trump, probably because he doesn't believe in conservatism or something. Instead of putting that basic truth on air, the reality that many prominent conservatives opposed Trump and could frame that opposition in a conservative way, they went out and hired truly crazy people like Jeffrey Lord to show "balance" and pretend it was normal that basically their entire stable of commentators wouldn't defend their party's nominee.

And now print publications are doing the same thing, dragging far right voices into the mainstream.
posted by zachlipton at 11:39 AM on December 9, 2016 [60 favorites]


I thought we were all about choice?

Solution: Make the SS cuts voluntary and let the populace know that any money cut will be going to the rich for job creation and growth.

See how many Republicans willingly give up a sixth to half their retirement income then.
posted by Talez at 11:39 AM on December 9, 2016 [26 favorites]


"I'm surprised that more people aren't looking back to the Harding administration for what a Trump presidency will look like. I'm pretty sure this is the first I've read."

On my facebook page, somewhere around November 9th, I gave my predictions for a Trump administration:

1. Best Case Scenario: Warren G. Harding the Second
2. Worst Case Scenario: Greg Stillson from The Dead Zone

I'm actually shocked it took the actual pundit class so long to make the connection, because to me (as a professional history guy) it was glaringly obvious, but honestly I think most of the punditocracy considers any history that went down before their own lifetimes to be totally irrelevant. (It's not.)
posted by absalom at 11:43 AM on December 9, 2016 [29 favorites]


SSI already is too low. The current base rate is 733 dollars, with an upcoming COLA increase of 0.3 PERCENT which is an increase of 2 dollars and 19 cents per month. That starts Jan 1 2017. (Note in 2016 there was no increase)
Base benefits are what people with no work history get: your developmentally disabled and people born or end up with disabilities that can never work. On top of that people may earn retirement or SSDI which is based in the income you take in/what you paid in. Note MAX benefit is 2500 a month.

Most people with work histories get probably between 850 and 1200 per month.

This prices disabled individuals and seniors out of major cities already, which is where the medical care is. Its already a nightmare, COLA is already underestimated, and SSDI is taxed as income if the household income is above a certain amount.

Seriously, there has not been a significant increase in SSI in decades, and they want to decrease it?!
posted by AlexiaSky at 11:46 AM on December 9, 2016 [44 favorites]


Dozens of Members of Congress Met With Religious Right Pastors to Drive Satan out of Power in the Capitol

Didn't work. Trump is still President-Elect.
posted by Servo5678 at 11:46 AM on December 9, 2016 [31 favorites]




I mean, as Farhi points out, the Times dragged in Glenn Beck and Erick Erickson in the name of balance and truly the best they could get is "is not Hitler." That's enormously meaningful. Shifting to even more right wing commentators hides the great big middle of those who are uneasy with the President-elect and don't stand for all this nonsense. If Glenn Beck won't say crazy enough things for your op-eds, why the rush to find someone who will?
posted by zachlipton at 11:48 AM on December 9, 2016 [17 favorites]


Mainstream Media Puts Out the Call for Pro-Trump Columnists

Have they tried looking in the Wall Street Journal editorial page?
posted by acb at 11:49 AM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


Sad California politics news: the Field Poll, which started in 1947 and garnered great respect for their polls of California, is shutting down.
posted by zachlipton at 11:50 AM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


On a tangent: the spirit of our age is now available in plush toy form.
posted by acb at 11:51 AM on December 9, 2016 [15 favorites]




And now print publications are doing the same thing, dragging far right voices into the mainstream.

It's utterly amazing to me that pretty much no one in the American media is familiar with something Daniel Okrent (first public editor for the NYT, also the guy who created fantasy baseball) once pointed out : As Wikipedia put it in its entry on Mr. Orkent, it's called Okrent's Law and it states that "'the pursuit of balance can create imbalance because sometimes something is true,' referring to the phenomenon of the press providing legitimacy to fringe or minority viewpoints in an effort to appear even-handed. (link)

Notice that the news media only makes this extra effort in order to bring in voices from the right. Funny how that happens.
posted by lord_wolf at 11:53 AM on December 9, 2016 [56 favorites]


Yep, but now the darkest timeline has given us the worst public editor who says the truth usually in "the grays" and embraces "open[ing] doors to understanding" with white supremacists.
posted by zachlipton at 11:58 AM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


If only there were a way to raise the cap on SS taxes so if you made more than 118,500 dollars a year you had to continue to contribute to social security. If only! But as we know, that is a violation of the laws of physics itself, so we must not even deign consider it for else the Earth itself would crack in twain! Mathematics itself would be transformed into mac and cheese, and the human ability to comprehend sound would be perverted in such a way that at all times one would hear a never-ending loop of Fran Drescher's laugh beneath all other audible stimulus.

IT'S JUST SCIENCE PEOPLE! 118,500 is the highest available number to be taxed. You ignore this piece of natural law at your own peril.
posted by tittergrrl at 11:59 AM on December 9, 2016 [97 favorites]


For what it's worth, the stock market surge is on Obama's clock. Two reasons: people have not traditionally counted from the time of the election and we'll see how the stock market reacts when Trump actually tries issuing an order such as adding a tariff to Chinese goods. Right now, he is all growl. Soon, he'll be a drunk bear in the china shop. (unintended puns)
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 12:00 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


An Asal. That's absolutely class, that is how I will refer to him from now on. :)

Tha e cho duaichnidh ri èarr àirde de a' coisich deas damh.
posted by Wordshore at 12:00 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


Notice that the news media only makes this extra effort in order to bring in voices from the right. Funny how that happens.

You can see the geologic layers of conservative thought at the Washington Post. Their editorial section keeps bringing on new conservative voices while keeping the old ones aboard. They carry the entire spectrum of conservative thought from the '70s up to recently, from George Will to Jennifer Rubin, and will probably be adding someone simpatico with Trump without paying much mind to any strong progressive opinion writers anywhere.
posted by peeedro at 12:00 PM on December 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


Good grief, even the guy who wrote Clinton Cash thinks Trump should divest himself of his businesses.
posted by zachlipton at 12:02 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


It's utterly amazing to me that pretty much no one in the American media is familiar with something Daniel Okrent...once pointed out : As Wikipedia put it in its entry on Mr. Orkent, it's called Okrent's Law and it states that "'the pursuit of balance can create imbalance because sometimes something is true,' referring to the phenomenon of the press providing legitimacy to fringe or minority viewpoints in an effort to appear even-handed.

Exactly that kind of 'balancing' lead to the equivalence of Clinton's emails with Trump's many, many lies, scandals, and conflicts of interest. 'We just ran a piece on a Trump scandal; we need to do a Clinton one for balance' led to one or two articles per Trump scandal and a thousand articles on emails, lending them significance and diffusing the stigma of Trump's many problems.
posted by cjelli at 12:04 PM on December 9, 2016 [12 favorites]


I don't know who these people are meeting with Trump, but they all have the same heads.

Blue Man Group's day job.
posted by kirkaracha at 12:04 PM on December 9, 2016 [11 favorites]


I don't know who these people are meeting with Trump, but they all have the same heads.

I was in Team Gorgon, but having seen this, it makes a ton more sense that Trump is a hydra. Which only strengthens my resolve to kill it with fire.
posted by Mayor West at 12:13 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


I liked that tweet which suggested that Trump is assembling a council of Luthors.
posted by Pope Guilty at 12:15 PM on December 9, 2016 [17 favorites]


I'm actually shocked it took the actual pundit class so long to make the connection (with the Harding administration)

In fact the article making the connection is from Naked Capitalism, not the pundit class but one of the sites 'exposed' as Russian propaganda in the McCarthyite 'fake news' fake news story in the Washington Post etc.
posted by Coda Tronca at 12:16 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


> I don't know who these people are meeting with Trump,

Oh, just some skinheads, by the look of it. So, you know, nothing unusual.
posted by Westringia F. at 12:19 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


DON'T. NORMALIZE. HAIR
posted by beerperson at 12:21 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


On the lighter/stupider side of the news, Trumpists are promoting the Twitter hashtag #DumpStarWars because, they falsely claim, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story was rewritten and reshot specifically to "add in anti Trump {sic} scenes calling him a racist."
posted by Doktor Zed at 12:21 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Honestly, if this means tickets are easier to get next weekend and I don't have to even unknowingly sit next to a racist fucker in a movie theater, I'm okay with their boycott.
posted by hippybear at 12:23 PM on December 9, 2016 [37 favorites]


ACLU just tweeted: ACLU National ‏@ACLU 17m17 minutes ago
While govt may choose public spaces for inaugural events, it cannot use permit delays to block access to all meaningful protest areas in DC!
posted by yoga at 12:23 PM on December 9, 2016 [22 favorites]


On the lighter/stupider side of the news, Trumpists are promoting the Twitter hashtag #DumpStarWars because, they falsely claim, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story was rewritten and reshot specifically to "add in anti Trump {sic} scenes calling him a racist."

@saladinahmed: reminder that STAR WARS is about a kid converting to a bearded foreigner's religion, joining insurgents, and blowing things up #dumpstarwars
posted by zombieflanders at 12:24 PM on December 9, 2016 [27 favorites]


Star Wars: Our evil space wizard bureaucrats are an allegory for how Nazis are evil.
[] voters: HOW DARE YOU
posted by emjaybee at 12:26 PM on December 9, 2016 [42 favorites]


When the civil war breaks out, it will be mostly ok in the big blue majority cities. Mostly the same for rural and small town areas. The real shit show will be in medium sized cities like Waco or Ferguson.
posted by Burhanistan at 12:31 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


I feel like we're all stuck somewhere between the mindset that once the facts of how horrible the Trump administration is start to become clear people will come to their senses and the still-dawning understanding that the people who supported him don't give a rat's ass about facts and may well live through his entire presidency in their own personal alternate reality, never seeing anything wrong that they can't blame on someone else.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 12:33 PM on December 9, 2016 [49 favorites]


Labor Secretary Pick Is Fourth Top Trump Figure Who’s Been Accused of Assaulting Women

And on that note:
The pastor at Trump's rally in LA tells the audience that Trump's WH will be a place "where men know who men are, women know who women are."
--@danmericaCNN

Just to put all the hate and awfulness in one comment, ESPN: Giants FB Nikita Whitlock: Burglars left swastika, 'KKK'
posted by zachlipton at 12:34 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


So let's see here:

- won't divest himself of his business interests which are mostly in direct conflict with his job description
- destabilized diplomatic relations with two countries
- his best cabinet choice thus far (mind you, best is subjective, but I stand by the characterization) can't legally hold the position he may be nominated for
- made racism mainstream again
- lies and lies and lies an lies so often that reporting that he lied is non-news

...aaand we're still six weeks out from him actually taking power.

When I try to imagine how the four years after January 20, 2017 will be, I'm honestly drawing a blank, because all I can come up with sounds like the first five minutes of a bad dystopian movie.
posted by Mooski at 12:35 PM on December 9, 2016 [46 favorites]




Upside: dystopian authors and filmmakers now have a really obvious visual shorthand for "when everything started going to shit" and that's a picture of president Trump.

Historians, too, if there will be any left.
posted by lydhre at 12:39 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


dystopian authors and filmmakers now have a really obvious visual shorthand...

I have an inkling that selling visions of dystopia is going to be a bit like a futurist trying to make money predicting the existence of cellphones and laptops.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 12:45 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


God damn it, we should've let these fuckers go when we had the chance. How Trump and the GOP will try to turn the entire country into Dixie
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to live in Mississippi or Alabama? Well if the GOP has its way, you’ll get the chance to find out.

That’s because Donald Trump and congressional Republicans, through the executive branch leadership now being assembled and the legislative priorities they have laid out, are preparing to take the economic, political, and social arrangements of the South and spread them across the country.
posted by kirkaracha at 12:46 PM on December 9, 2016 [15 favorites]


The big picture is that the current Social Security Trust Fund is predicted to be exhausted in the mid-late 2030s. So roughly in 20 years. People often refer to this as 'bankruptcy'. But that's not really accurate. At that point Social Security would only be able to pay 79% of benefits recipients will be entitled to in those years.

I wonder how many people even know that Social Security benefits are funded entirely by SSA revenues,not from the general fund, and that "bankruptcy" refers to the point where changes to either financing or benefits are forced, in order to remain in that position? The game is, of course, to appeal to the idea that "everybody knows" that the system is about to collapse, and that radical changes are needed at once.
posted by thelonius at 12:49 PM on December 9, 2016 [33 favorites]


On the lighter/stupider side of the news, Trumpists are promoting the Twitter hashtag #DumpStarWars because, they falsely claim, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story was rewritten and reshot specifically to "add in anti Trump {sic} scenes calling him a racist."

I thought we'd already established that people who refer to themselves as nerds are actually horrible fascistic trolls to whom the dominant culture caters endlessly regardless
posted by beerperson at 12:50 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


In fact the article making the connection is from Naked Capitalism, not the pundit class but one of the sites 'exposed' as Russian propaganda in the McCarthyite 'fake news' fake news story in the Washington Post etc.

Oh, is Naked Capitalism critical of Trump now? Because they certainly weren't during the election.
posted by maggiemaggie at 12:52 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


I'm sure I'm being willfully naive, but I have to think trying to slash Social Security and Medicare is pretty much the one thing that could get old white people to turn against the GOP.
posted by Chrysostom at 12:59 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


DoE national labs include Argonne, Brookhaven, Fermilab, LLBL, SLAC [Stanford linear accelerator], &c. -- all the major high-energy physics labs. What the fuck.

DOE labs also include Los Alamos and Oak Ridge, which, among other things, have a hand in doing environmental research apart from and in partnership with the EPA.
posted by C'est la D.C. at 1:00 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


that is exactly why I stopped watching the news the evening of November 8th

QFFT. RIP generalized belief of some good at all in corporate media. Can't even watch my Sam Bee and I loves me some Sam Bee.

Loved. . . . Argh. SO! *clap* "books" you say, eh? Where might one find a "books"?
posted by petebest at 1:02 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


I'm sure I'm being willfully naive, but I have to think trying to slash Social Security and Medicare is pretty much the one thing that could get old white people to turn against the GOP.

In every previous year of my life, I would agree with you, but considering that old white people (of whom I am one) were, many of them, just too fucking stupid, gullible, and hateful to vote against Trump, all bets are off.
posted by FelliniBlank at 1:02 PM on December 9, 2016 [21 favorites]


I'm not clever enough to write the full lyrics like some others here, but "son of a Hebridean" has me humming Dusty Springfield. So on balance that's a plus.
posted by Quindar Beep at 1:03 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]



Upside: dystopian authors and filmmakers now have a really obvious visual shorthand for "when everything started going to shit" and that's a picture of president Trump.


MeFi's own cstross has taken a hiatus from near term fiction..
posted by ocschwar at 1:05 PM on December 9, 2016


Oh, is Naked Capitalism critical of Trump now? Because they certainly weren't during the election.

They're critical of everything. Which is fair enough if you write about politics and economics.
posted by Coda Tronca at 1:05 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


I have to think trying to slash Social Security and Medicare is pretty much the one thing that could get old white people to turn against the GOP.

And yet, here we are. Maybe it's the Lipitor. That stuff can not be good for anyone.
posted by petebest at 1:08 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


DOE labs also include Los Alamos and Oak Ridge, which, among other things, have a hand in doing environmental research apart from and in partnership with the EPA.

Also the JGI and NREL, which explicitly do research pertaining to biofuel.
posted by en forme de poire at 1:10 PM on December 9, 2016


Where might one find a "books"?

I thinks they has thems books at thems food library?
posted by radicalawyer at 1:11 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Angry T voters are going to turn away from him.
posted by stonepharisee at 1:17 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


I haven't watched the news since it happened. Even Parks and Rec reruns make too sad, at this point. The election arcs are...rough.

Otoh I'm reading a lot more books, so.


We started Parks and Rec for the first time before the election, and it filled me with such warm and fuzzy hope! And now the election is over (and we're actually in the Knope 2012 plot arc) and the show makes me so sad sometimes. :(

On the other hand, I too am reading a lot more books! :D (Except two of them have actually mentioned Donald Trump as a pop culture subject for no discernibly good reason and oh god I even hate the previously-totally-fine word "trump" now too.) I've had to turn NPR off in my car because it just pissed me off to hear earnest discussion about this weird new state of things, so I'm listening to more music, too. And playing more games. And generally just making sure my own world is good and that my personal 2016 continues to be awesome even if it's been a shitshow for the world at large.

I haven't read election threads all that much in the past month for self-care reasons, so I guess a story about what I did that day is a little late, but: On Election Day my husband managed to get me on Space Mountain for the first time ever, which I still can't believe because I do not like the concept of roller coasters and I even more do not like the concept of roller coasters in the dark but well my fear somehow got suspended long enough for him to get me to go on it and it was a success! And as the day progressed and the election results started coming in (we were halfway around the world, in Tokyo) and as they gradually looked worse and worse I started to wonder if, when I got into the car for Space Mountain, I was actually entering a parallel universe in which I ride roller coasters without fear and Donald Trump gets elected president. The only other English speakers I heard in the park that day were reading an article off their phone about the five stages of grief as I walked past them. I feel like I am still in the denial stage when I think about how I surely must have taken a space ride to Bizarro World, especially since I didn't really process the news until we got home a week and a half later, and by that time no one was in the mood to commiserate anymore. I guess that's probably not healthy to deny that this is reality but it makes me feel better, somehow.
posted by phatkitten at 1:20 PM on December 9, 2016 [25 favorites]


So, I've been thinking a lot lately about the uniforms for the upcoming Patriot Corps - just brainstorming, really - and want to float a few questions:

- Confederate grey, or dark brown? The former is a logical choice, but the latter will hide blood stains better.
- I don't think we can pull off frock coats, but I hope tapered mandarin collars aren't too throwback. Neoreactionary cat fanboys will love it.
- Armbands! Can we get away with that? I'm thinking horizontal red/white stripes overlaid with a blue circle enclosing a single large white star - Would that be too busy? Limiting it to two stripes would be cleaner but that might look too Czech.
- Belts definitely, but no need to standardize on holsters or shoulder straps as I assume it'll be BYOW.
- Totally undecided on the cap, open to any ideas.
posted by CynicalKnight at 1:24 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]




I'm sure I'm being willfully naive, but I have to think trying to slash Social Security and Medicare is pretty much the one thing that could get old white people to turn against the GOP.

Not if the GOP can convince old white people that the cuts have something to do with benefits being siphoned off by the Two Million Illegals Who Voted For Clinton.
posted by Fish, fish, are you doing your duty? at 1:26 PM on December 9, 2016 [16 favorites]


Trump transition team: Rudy Giuliani "removed his name from consideration for a position" in the Trump admin.

That is one impressively weaselly euphemism for "got the bum's rush." [golf clap]
posted by FelliniBlank at 1:30 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


I was wondering what one position he removed his name from and how many others he was still in contention for.
posted by hippybear at 1:32 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


Anyone read the NYT interview with the Comet Ping Pong gunman? It's oddly humanizing—I know we wouldn't be hearing about his favorite book if he wasn't white—but I'm not really interested in building up bogeymen.

Duke Law prof. Jedediah Purdy's tweets after the "Pizzagate" attack rang true to me (quoted below). How do we deal with approaches to the world that are so utterly bogus and prosaic, yet self-reinforcing and seemingly unfalsifiable?
This DC shooter's "self-investigation" of a lunatic rumor is eerily emblematic of today's compensatory fantasies of political agency.

Conspiracy theories are political reason for a complex & opaque world - a solipsistic mock-up of omniscience. Vigilantism is a fantasy form of agency for those who feel they should be effective but are mysteriously stuck; the gun is its symbol. Burn-it-down political nihilism is a theory of political change for those who don't want real change but can't abide the present. Trumpism is all this writ large: conspiracy thinking as insight, violence as mastery, nihilism as vision - all gestural & imagistic... As a video game. A first-person shooter, first-person knower video game.

We are becoming a gun culture in a deep way, as a gun makes the world more chaotic & dangerous while feeding a fantasy of control & safety. And as the long as the same logic holds, the more guns (conspiracies, etc.) there are, the more you need.
posted by waninggibbon at 1:32 PM on December 9, 2016 [41 favorites]


and oh god I even hate the previously-totally-fine word "trump" now too.

I'm really nervous to play euchre next time with my Michigan friends; it sure is going to sort the good ones from the never-talking-to-you-again ones right quick.

I suppose bridge players have the same issue but with less geographical association. Way easier in that game to insist on "NO TRUMP!!" however.
posted by Joey Buttafoucault at 1:34 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


From the Trump transition team for Energy Department seeks names of employees involved in climate meetings WaPo story that martin q blank posted above [...] I want to see the APS & AIP scream about this.

...welp, this is professionally pretty concerning. I'd actually been worrying more about the NIH and NSF, since Argonne/Brookhaven/SSRL, the JGI, and the bits of the DOE that directly fund academic biochemical research (or biochemical ARPA-E initiatives) seemed comparatively small and esoteric for the incoming administration to notice, at least initially, but yay, another front to be terrified about.
posted by ubersturm at 1:34 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


The last time I turned on NPR was 11/8
posted by angrycat at 1:34 PM on December 9, 2016 [11 favorites]


- Totally undecided on the cap, open to any ideas.

Completely misread that as "capes" and was starting to wonder what direction these uniforms were going to take.
posted by nubs at 1:35 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


How do we combat visions of the world that are so utterly bogus and prosaic, yet self-reinforcing and seemingly unfalsifiable?

We keep hoping they walk into public places with assault weapons a-blazin' (with no casualties) so we can keep arresting them until the general zeitgeist is that you need to check your sources before you start doing stupid things. The actively non-research-oriented will be in jail, the others will be neutralized.
posted by hippybear at 1:35 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


and oh god I even hate the previously-totally-fine word "trump" now too.

Playing bridge is a bitch at this point.
posted by hippybear at 1:36 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


I'm sure I'm being willfully naive, but I have to think trying to slash Social Security and Medicare is pretty much the one thing that could get old white people to turn against the GOP.

Not if the GOP can convince old white people that the cuts have something to do with benefits being siphoned off by the Two Million Illegals Who Voted For Clinton.


I'm expecting the GOP to turn it into a pity play, as sociopaths typically do: "It's time for us older, Real Americans (tm), to do the right thing for our kids and grandkids and accept small reductions to our own benefits to preserve these programs for the younger generation."

It won't be enough for them to just blame the "problem" on someone else, they need to also be thanked for "fixing it" and look like martyrs in the process. (also adds to their narrative of millennials being ungrateful whiners)
posted by melissasaurus at 1:36 PM on December 9, 2016 [12 favorites]


Notice that the news media only makes this extra effort in order to bring in voices from the right. Funny how that happens.

It's also so bizarre to me how pubs like the NYT seems to think that, what, they're going to lose readership if it's actually doing it's fucking job? The people who would clench their fists and froth over the NYT being "soooo biased I am DONE with them" are not reading the NYT, they're hate-jerkin' to Breitbart and TruePatriotz.falseflag.lizardpeople.us and reading about the rise in black on black crime and check out this ***SHOCKING*** video of a muslim teen beating up a christian teen for wishing him merry christmas instead of happy holidays. Like make no mistake they are not reading fucking David Brooks thoughts on trade policy.
posted by windbox at 1:38 PM on December 9, 2016 [47 favorites]


@jonathanalter
Giuliani withdraws from State contention. Note to press: Not his biz ties but that Rand Paul had the 2 other votes needed to block him.
posted by chris24 at 1:44 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


I dunno, [] being able to say "let's make a sacrifice" with a straight face seems out of character for him.

I would lean toward "I have no choice but to do this because of Democrats" because that's their standard line. And while Memaw and PopPop are always up for some hippie-punching, the fact that their SS checks are going to get trimmed while [] is at the helm might give them pause.

I mean, while it's wrong to underestimate the damage Republicans want to do and the mendacity they will employ, one defining characteristic of [] is that he, unapologetically and openly, screws over anyone he can. It's his thing. It feeds his desire to dominate.
posted by emjaybee at 1:45 PM on December 9, 2016 [11 favorites]


Trump transition team: Rudy Giuliani "removed his name from consideration for a position" in the Trump admin.

Further details: The transition team released a statement saying that during their meeting with Trump on November 29, he said that Rudolph "The Fascist Asshole" Giuliani had "removed his name from consideration of a position in the new administration." CBS is reporting that the position was Secretary of State.

The transition team only got around to breaking the news today.

They may have accidentally left off Giuliani's nickname, tho. I helpfully filled it in.
posted by zarq at 1:45 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


and oh god I even hate the previously-totally-fine word "trump" now too.

In my wife's family's town in Japan there is a pachinko place with a gigantic towering sign that says "TRUMP! TRUMP! TRUMP!". It's not owned by or related to Donald Trump in any way, but its still weird /unpleasant to see now.
posted by thefoxgod at 1:46 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


The Electoral College is a ticking time bomb.

I thought it already exploded twice.
posted by GospelofWesleyWillis at 1:46 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


So, I heard this episode of BBC Trending [18m] that described how Duterte's social media campaign ran, and I found it informative and oddly inspiring.

The positive part of this story starts at around 10m40s. The whole thing is good, though.
posted by Coventry at 1:47 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


In my mind I'm not even sure what from the right means anymore. Like where are the sensible conservatives who want fiscal responsibility but not damage public service? They use to be around, and make decent arguments. You can be on the right and want tax increases, want to keep Medicare funded ect.

Those are the voices that need to be published and heard right now.
posted by AlexiaSky at 1:47 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


Not his biz ties but that Rand Paul had the 2 other votes needed to block him.

There is an ever growing list of people I never, ever, ever, ever thought would save us from ourselves, and Rand Paul is pretty high up on that list.
posted by anastasiav at 1:48 PM on December 9, 2016 [20 favorites]


Like where are the sensible conservatives who want fiscal responsibility but not damage public service? They use to be around, and make decent arguments. You can be on the right and want tax increases, want to keep Medicare funded ect.

Those are the voices that need to be published and heard right now.


They're in charge of the Democratic Party, and have been since the 90's.
posted by Pope Guilty at 1:51 PM on December 9, 2016 [56 favorites]


"Harding plus nukes plus Twitter" has been my working model for the past month.

Can't wait for "we're saving Social Security from a time where it may need to cut benefits by promising to slash benefits, also look at this tax cut for the millionaire you might be if you have magic bootstraps."
posted by holgate at 1:52 PM on December 9, 2016 [11 favorites]


In my mind I'm not even sure what from the right means anymore. Like where are the sensible conservatives who want fiscal responsibility but not damage public service? They use to be around, and make decent arguments. You can be on the right and want tax increases, want to keep Medicare funded ect.

They were purged in 1994 when the Nixon coalition put a bullet in the brain of the remaining Rockefeller Republicans and fully took over the asylum. Then, as PG said, they became Democrats (see: Kirsten Gillbirand).
posted by Talez at 1:53 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


jesus christ people can we please just get over ourselves and refer to Trump by his goddam fucking name
posted by beerperson at 1:54 PM on December 9, 2016 [39 favorites]


jesus christ people can we please just get over ourselves and refer to Trump by his goddam fucking name

But that gives him power over my soy latte!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:55 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]




On my facebook page, somewhere around November 9th, I gave my predictions for a [Harding-like] Trump administration

Yeah, the parallels to Harding were clear even before the election. At least Harding eventually had the self-awareness to recognize that he was not fit for the job. I doubt Trump could do that, no matter how bad it gets.
posted by Coventry at 1:57 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


jesus christ people can we please just get over ourselves and refer to Trump by his goddam fucking name

Everybody has their own coping mechanisms. Cope.
posted by Mooski at 1:58 PM on December 9, 2016 [18 favorites]


Trump blasts early voting: ‘Many things can go wrong’
“They had that long early voting in Florida. It’s so long, and so many things can go wrong when you have that long period of time, right?” Trump told the Baton Rouge crowd. “That long, long, long period. Used to be you’d have a day, you vote. Now you’re going forever. Weeks and weeks.”

Trump said he was in Florida when he asked, “Wow, what’s happening over there?” at the sight of one line.

“I thought it was like a big movie,” he told the crowd. “They said: ‘No, sir, that’s voting. They’re voting.’”

Trump said they were “voting like really early.” “And we have to discuss that early thing,” he continued. “That’s sort of — so many things are going on. So many things.”

The president-elect, who continually suggested throughout his campaign that the election was rigged against him, added that he’s curious about what occurs when early voting precincts are “locked.”

“I wonder what happens during the evenings when those places are ‘locked,’ right?” Trump said, using air quotes. “But the Democrats were the people who’d say, ‘Donald Trump is criticizing the foundations of our country.’ Give me a break. Give me a break. Give me a break.”
Donald Trump is criticizing the foundations of our country. There, I said it.
posted by zachlipton at 1:58 PM on December 9, 2016 [51 favorites]


About Medicare... roughly 10,000 Baby Boomers turn 65 today. Tomorrow, another 10,000 turn 65. The day after that, another 10,000 turn 65.

That's going to happen every single day for the next 13 years. Nearly all of them are eligible for Social Security and Medicare (average 96%). If they receive Social Security, they get Medicare A coverage for free.

My mother relies on Social Security and Medicare to survive. I worry about her every time those assholes threaten to defund either program.

But I'm also almost hoping the GOP makes a concerted effort to attack it. Her generation has been promised that entitlement for their entire lives and many of them probably wholeheartedly believe it's owed to them. There is no way in hell they'll allow it to be taken away.
posted by zarq at 1:58 PM on December 9, 2016 [22 favorites]


(I mean, he's really not, because one of the foundations of our country was keeping as many people from voting as possible, but anyway...)
posted by zachlipton at 1:59 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


> In my mind I'm not even sure what from the right means anymore.

The American system works when there is a rational right and a rational left. It's assumed that those are given. That is no longer the case, so we should stop referring to them as the right at all. We should rebuild the right with rational people willing to argue a case.
posted by stonepharisee at 1:59 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]




There is an ever growing list of people I never, ever, ever, ever thought would save us from ourselves, and Rand Paul is pretty high up on that list.

I know exactly what you mean, that how I felt when I heard Orrin Hatch is going to stop the GOP from killing the Senate filibuster.
posted by joedan at 2:00 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


I've noticed a lot of people using various ways to avoid saying Donald Trump's name...

I call him Donald. I know he'd be irritated by an uppity woman using his first name and it feels good.
posted by apricot at 2:01 PM on December 9, 2016 [35 favorites]


jesus christ people can we please just get over ourselves and refer to Trump by his goddam fucking name

I'm waiting for someone to give him the ol' Frothy Santorum treatment.

What's the most disgusting sexually-transmitted disease on the planet? Ånything that makes your junk shrivel up and fall off?
posted by zarq at 2:01 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


But I'm also almost hoping the GOP makes a concerted effort to attack it. Her generation has been promised that entitlement for their entire lives and many of them probably wholeheartedly believe it's owed to them. There is no way in hell they'll allow it to be taken away.

This is why their proposals exempt people over 55. Because those same people who feel owed benefits, have no fucking problem pulling up the ladder behind them.
posted by T.D. Strange at 2:02 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


and many of them probably wholeheartedly believe it's owed to them.

It is owed to them. And us. They (and we) paid the premiums on it our entire goddam working lives.

"We can never insure one hundred percent of the population against one hundred percent of the hazards and vicissitudes of life, but we have tried to frame a law which will give some measure of protection to the average citizen and to his family against the loss of a job and against poverty-ridden old age.

This law, too, represents a cornerstone in a structure which is being built but is by no means complete. It is a structure intended to lessen the force of possible future depressions. It will act as a protection to future Administrations against the necessity of going deeply into debt to furnish relief to the needy. The law will flatten out the peaks and valleys of deflation and of inflation. It is, in short, a law that will take care of human needs and at the same time provide for the United States an economic structure of vastly greater soundness."


- FDR, August 14, 1935
posted by anastasiav at 2:02 PM on December 9, 2016 [40 favorites]


This "Person of the Year" thing has him seriously tweaked, and it's horrifying that he's doing a damn applause-o-meter that basically asks people to stand in a crowd of Trump supporters and publicly shout out if they believe in being "politically correct," because there's no way their safety could be threatened by doing that.
posted by zachlipton at 2:03 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]



There is an ever growing list of people I never, ever, ever, ever thought would save us from ourselves, and Rand Paul is pretty high up on that list.


Along those lines, I think Evan McMullin has earned the retirement of 'McMuffin'.
posted by ghharr at 2:04 PM on December 9, 2016 [22 favorites]


I don't know about the perfect nickname for Trump. Me and some friends have been trying out Orange World Leader Pretend but it's too long. But Sam Bee has labeled Pence forever with "Homophobic Race Bannon".
posted by Ber at 2:07 PM on December 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


@chrislhayes: I try to recall individual parts of the Trump campaign, but it's all been replaced in my memory with this
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 2:07 PM on December 9, 2016 [7 favorites]




> The questionnaire also appeared to take aim at the national laboratories, which operate with a high degree of independence but which are part of the Energy Department.

My employer, like the DOE national labs, is a Federally-Funded Research and Development Center (FFRDC). I expected the incoming administration to have an effect on our research sponsors, and potentially on my willingness to remain in this job, but I didn't think it would start before the guy's even taken the oath of office. Trump's shown almost no inclination to fill many of the positions beneath the secretaries that would normally be involved in this sort of low-level thing, so I figured maybe there would be some executive orders at some point that would change things...

But here we have the Heritage Foundation basically using the transition team as a proxy to shake down people who aren't even government employees. I've worked at my FFRDC for 12 years now, and I've never seen anything like this. We don't do anything related to environmental science, so we're probably not in the line of fire right now, but who knows what the next thing will be? Might be time to update the resume just to keep options open.
posted by tonycpsu at 2:14 PM on December 9, 2016 [15 favorites]


So BuzzFeed News posted a comment on Facebook from their official account telling Infowars/Alex Jones they're sharing a hoax: "Hey! We’re not sure what your corrections policy is…but this story doesn't appear to be true. Here's our reporting: http://bzfd.it/2ho3PA2." This could be interesting.
posted by zachlipton at 2:17 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


Please save your outrage for the people responsible for the burning garbage fire that is our country, don't waste it on people just trying to survive said goddamn fire.

Oh and Giuliani is out because [] is looking at an Exxon executive for SOS.
posted by emjaybee at 2:18 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


There is an ever growing list of people I never, ever, ever, ever thought would save us from ourselves, and Rand Paul is pretty high up on that list.

Along those lines, I think Evan McMullin has earned the retirement of 'McMuffin'.


For all the problems I have with Lindsey Graham, he's another one of the few who seems to be sticking by his principles in the face of Trump.
posted by jason_steakums at 2:21 PM on December 9, 2016 [14 favorites]


But I'm also almost hoping the GOP makes a concerted effort to attack it. Her generation has been promised that entitlement for their entire lives and many of them probably wholeheartedly believe it's owed to them. There is no way in hell they'll allow it to be taken away.

Yes, they absolutely will, if the last thirty years of successful Republican hoodwinking and sleight of hand is any indication. You just find a way to blame it on the standard bogeymen: terrorism and brown skin and sinister foreign powers. It's stupendously easy.

It's tempting to think, okay, LET the Republicans make such a miserable fucking mess for the next four years that no one in the middle class could possibly mistake them for allies. It's tempting to think that the gutted middle class will begin to notice who's gutting them and where the money is going. But after 8 Nov 2016 I've made a little vow to myself that I will never, ever let myself be surprised by what happens to American political discourse.
posted by Vic Morrow's Personal Vietnam at 2:23 PM on December 9, 2016 [17 favorites]


beerperson: "jesus christ people can we please just get over ourselves and refer to Trump by his goddam fucking name"

Fine. President-Elect Asshole it is then.
posted by double block and bleed at 2:25 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


I wonder who they voted for???
In Depressed Rural Kentucky, Worries Mount Over Medicaid Cutbacks
posted by robbyrobs at 2:25 PM on December 9, 2016 [11 favorites]


There is an ever growing list of people I never, ever, ever, ever thought would save us from ourselves, and Rand Paul is pretty high up on that list.

I know exactly what you mean, that how I felt when I heard Orrin Hatch is going to stop the GOP from killing the Senate filibuster.


Let us not forget the "Sarah Palin said something sensible" moment.
posted by FelliniBlank at 2:25 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


I just realized the last four times the electoral vote went to the loser in the popular vote.

Hillary Clinton won the popular vote: but they gave it to the Republican.
Al Gore won the popular vote: but they gave it to the Republican.
Grover Cleveland won the popular vote: but they gave it to the Republican.
Samuel Tilden won the popular vote: but they gave it to the Republican.

(The previous time it happened before Tilden, Republicans didn't exist).
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 2:26 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


> "Who would rather have it be Man of the Year?"

Is this that "identity politics" I've been hearing about?
posted by waninggibbon at 2:27 PM on December 9, 2016 [31 favorites]


Along those lines, I think Evan McMullin has earned the retirement of 'McMuffin'.

Well I, for one, have always said it with affection, but alright, if you insist. I guess I can let that go for a goddamn patriot (in a good way).
posted by FelliniBlank at 2:28 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


"Hey! We’re not sure what your corrections policy is…but this story doesn't appear to be true.

It appears that the comment was deleted.
posted by Coventry at 2:30 PM on December 9, 2016


On coping with the results and what to do next: Chris Kluwe, former NFL Punter, Social Justice Advocate via the podcast, A Science Enthusiast.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:31 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


Egg, I dreamed that we won the Electoral College.
posted by asteria at 2:31 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


Hillary Clinton won the popular vote: but they gave it to the Republican.
Al Gore won the popular vote: but they gave it to the Republican.
Grover Cleveland won the popular vote: but they gave it to the Republican.
Samuel Tilden won the popular vote: but they gave it to the Republican.


This is fun, but the 19th century Democratic and Republican parties don't map particularly well to the 21st century versions.
posted by Chrysostom at 2:33 PM on December 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


(In my heart, he will always remain MeFi's Own Honorary Egg.)
posted by FelliniBlank at 2:34 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


It appears that the comment was deleted.

I still see it here. One negative reply so far.
posted by zachlipton at 2:35 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


And Obama is leaving in a couple months. He's talking about ginning up to lead some opposition stuff once he's out of office

This comment from the last thread (the last comment of the last thread, even?) is what I've been thinking/hoping for the last month--like, at this point, things are so surrealistically awful, and looking to get worse, and nobody's taking a big public stand or doing a big public "follow me"? It is so surprising and weird that this is all going basically uncommented-upon in the big-time national discourse. It has re-written my reality. Not that Trump won, but that nobody is challenging him.

Another source of non-sarcastic shock: Are all our checks and balances really this partisan, that if the right monster comes at the right time, he's invincible? And, related: Were diplomatic relations with China really so fragile? I had no idea we had built our society so close to the edge of the abyss. I really had no idea.
posted by witchen at 2:35 PM on December 9, 2016 [43 favorites]


Along those lines, I think Evan McMullin has earned the retirement of 'McMuffin'.

Except he seems to be into it. The key to a good nickname is that someone else has to coin it and the subject has to embrace it, once that happens, it sticks.
posted by VTX at 2:37 PM on December 9, 2016 [13 favorites]


I just realized the last four times the electoral vote went to the loser in the popular vote.

Hillary Clinton won the popular vote: but they gave it to the Republican.
Al Gore won the popular vote: but they gave it to the Republican.
Grover Cleveland won the popular vote: but they gave it to the Republican.
Samuel Tilden won the popular vote: but they gave it to the Republican.


Mmmm. This comment makes me uncomfortable. Being a "Republican" meant something very different before the Dixiecrats split off in light of the civil rights legislation.

Benjamin Harrison (who beat Cleveland) fought on the Union side, alongside William T. Sherman, in the Civil War.

Rutherford B. Hayes (who beat Tilden) also fought on the Union side in the Civil War, and participated in the second Battle of Bull Run.

Cleveland and Tilden, in turn, were "Bourbon Democrats" in favor of big business, the gold standard, lower tariffs, etc.

The way you are using the term "Republican" is rather deceptive in context.
posted by Joey Buttafoucault at 2:38 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


To be clear, Harrison and Hayes were the republicans. And I don't mean to valorize them based on their military service; it's just that, at that time, if you supported the Union, you served in the Union army.
posted by Joey Buttafoucault at 2:41 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


I had no idea we had built our society so close to the edge of the abyss. I really had no idea.

I'm close to a number of people who have a significantly high level of clearance. And while they never even hint to the specifics of drama in any way, they very clearly have a level of knowledge about the precipice that we are on that I do not want to have. More than one of them indicated that most sane people, once they get the first briefing, have to go home and have a quiet freak out. Then it becomes everyday to you, and then when you realize that the high level stuff has become normal, you have another freak out.
posted by teleri025 at 2:41 PM on December 9, 2016 [44 favorites]


the uniforms for the upcoming Patriot Corps

Chaps, or it just ain't freedom, baby.

Awwww yeaaah
posted by petebest at 2:42 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


Trump said he was in Florida when he asked, “Wow, what’s happening over there?” at the sight of one line. “I thought it was like a big movie,” he told the crowd. “They said: ‘No, sir, that’s voting. They’re voting.’”...The president-elect, who continually suggested throughout his campaign that the election was rigged against him, added that he’s curious about what occurs when early voting precincts are “locked.”

“I wonder what happens during the evenings when those places are ‘locked,’ right?” Trump said, using air quotes.


Well, if someone in Florida actually did sneak into the locked polling places and rig the presidential election, then they either rigged it for you, sir, in which case your election was fraudulent, or they rigged it for Hillary Clinton, in which case they did a REALLY SHITTY JOB.
posted by Snarl Furillo at 2:42 PM on December 9, 2016 [37 favorites]


Fine, let's ban mail-in voting as well, especially for US military personnel posted overseas.
posted by holgate at 2:45 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


I had no idea we had built our society so close to the edge of the abyss. I really had no idea.

I get the sense that a lot of Americans are going to be waking up to this realization over the next few years.
posted by joedan at 2:47 PM on December 9, 2016 [11 favorites]


Like where are the sensible conservatives who want fiscal responsibility but not damage public service?

Sensible conservatives of all stripes are busy drinking ourselves into early graves because we thought there were more of us.
posted by corb at 2:50 PM on December 9, 2016 [58 favorites]


We didn't build it so close to the abyss. We built it strong, but since Clinton's election, it's been pushed closer and closer to the abyss by a concerted campaign to use language policing and phrase invention and media manipulation to the point we are at now.

The left didn't do this, and didn't do much to counter it (Air America? please!) across the past 25 years, seemingly relying on the populace to not be susceptible to decades-old propaganda techniques through their own smarts and willpower and ability to research issues. It didn't work. And here we are.
posted by hippybear at 2:50 PM on December 9, 2016 [24 favorites]


Playing bridge is a bitch at this point.

"Two no-fucks."
posted by petebest at 2:51 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Zarc- only part A (hospitalization) and Part B (doctors visits) are free, for original Medicare which is an 80/20 plan.

Part D is pretty much never free.

Some people do get it paid for by state programs and such.
posted by AlexiaSky at 2:53 PM on December 9, 2016


Are all our checks and balances really this partisan, that if the right monster comes at the right time, he's invincible?

Yes.
posted by T.D. Strange at 2:55 PM on December 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


I do wonder whether the Senate will stand up to any of Trump's announced appointments or if they are just going to roll over and let him have his way. #hopeagainsthope
posted by hippybear at 2:58 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


I had no idea we had built our society so close to the edge of the abyss. I really had no idea.

This is the perfect time to revive my one-person musical about the Reagan years: "Bonzo Bigtime"!

The year was 1980, a young Caspar Weinberger is shooting pool with James Watt when suddenly- a song breaks out! "Hey ho Ronnie, I think it's gonna look sunny . . . "
posted by petebest at 2:58 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Making Sense of Mike Flynn
How does a man like retired Lieutenant General Mike Flynn—who spent his life sifting through information and parsing reports, separating rumor and innuendo from actionable intelligence—come to promote conspiracy theories on social media?
...
But the question isn’t whether Flynn is the right choice, but whether Trump will scope and define his job in the right way—enabling him to succeed. At JSOC, he reported to a commander who apparently demanded that he discipline his outbursts and empowered his subordinates to rigorously test his ideas. He performed brilliantly. At the DIA, by contrast, he ran his own show, and reportedly demanded that his subordinates validate his ideas. He was promptly forced out.
posted by zachlipton at 2:58 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


> Like where are the sensible conservatives who want fiscal responsibility

Serious question: what does "fiscal responsibility" mean here? Does it mean reducing the deficit? Does it mean not raising taxes? Does it mean significantly reducing government spending (second chart, spending as % of GDP)? When have Republicans shown on any of these measures that they deserve this label that they've chosen for themselves?
posted by tonycpsu at 2:59 PM on December 9, 2016 [26 favorites]


Oh, and Infowars has a story (no link to them) claiming that Hillary Clinton keeps wearing purple in public as part of an effort to start a Soros-backed Purple Revolution in America.

Come to think of it, that's not such an awful idea. Thanks Infowars!
posted by zachlipton at 3:01 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


personally I avoid saying the orange fuckwad's name because I don't think he deserves that level of respect, not because I'm afraid of it
posted by Gymnopedist at 3:01 PM on December 9, 2016 [14 favorites]


When have Republicans shown on any of these measures that they deserve this label that they've chosen for themselves?

On TV.
posted by petebest at 3:02 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Republicans, at the federal level, have never been "fiscally responsible." It's propaganda all the way down.
posted by melissasaurus at 3:03 PM on December 9, 2016 [22 favorites]


Ha, there are 7 likes on that Buzzfeed comment, and I'd bet at least 6 of them are MeFites.
posted by rabbitrabbit at 3:03 PM on December 9, 2016


jesus christ people can we please just get over ourselves and refer to Trump by his goddam fucking name

Yeah, damnatio memoriae comes after the tyrant has been overthrown, not before he's even taken office.
posted by Doktor Zed at 3:03 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


I'm sure I'm being willfully naive, but I have to think trying to slash Social Security and Medicare is pretty much the one thing that could get old white people to turn against the GOP.

Yup. That's why they need to do this before 2018. It's as urgent for them as ACA was for Obama, and they are going to use as desperate measures.
posted by mumimor at 3:05 PM on December 9, 2016


Fine. President-Elect Asshole it is then.

C'mon now, that's not very respectful. It's polite to refer to people the way they've asked you to. So President-Elect Pussygrabber, please.
posted by kirkaracha at 3:08 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


People, I have finally managed to connect to the phonebank tool for Foster Campbell (Democratic candidate for Senator of Louisiana). Turns out the script was in the tool the whole time (I didn't know! I've never done this before). It's daunting. I need you all to yell at me so that I am able to make some calls tomorrow. PLEASE.
posted by sunset in snow country at 3:09 PM on December 9, 2016 [11 favorites]


Her generation has been promised that entitlement for their entire lives and many of them probably wholeheartedly believe it's owed to them.

its not an entitlement. and it is owed to us.
posted by quonsar II: smock fishpants and the temple of foon at 3:12 PM on December 9, 2016 [36 favorites]


{taps away on screen} Working title of the next election2016 post is currently

"Five weeks till the inauguration of President-Elect his goddam fucking name"

It may stay like that.
posted by Wordshore at 3:15 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


Yeah, how the fuck did stuff like SSI come to be known as "entitlements"?! Like I get why the right started calling them that, because they are fucking assholes, but why the hell do I see anyone else calling things like SSI or pensions or any other thing that you paid for an "entitlement"? Fucks sake, language matters.
posted by supercrayon at 3:16 PM on December 9, 2016 [27 favorites]


zarq What's the most disgusting sexually-transmitted disease on the planet?

You turned your memail off, and this is completely inappropriate to post here, so here's [pastebin]
a possible answer. NSFAnyone/anything.
posted by porpoise at 3:19 PM on December 9, 2016


Yeah, damnatio memoriae comes after the tyrant has been overthrown

I was thinking recently that the Trumpreich may impose its own damnatio memoriæ on Obama. What's to stop official materials, schoolbooks and so on being changed to list Trump as the 44th president, directly following Bush II, with Obama relegated to “the occupant of the Whitehouse” during the “disputed years”?
posted by acb at 3:19 PM on December 9, 2016


"Five weeks till the inauguration of President-Elect [his goddam fucking name]" if you please
posted by rabbitrabbit at 3:19 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


C'mon now, that's not very respectful. It's polite to refer to people the way they've asked you to. So President-Elect Pussygrabber, please.

Herr Sexmonster Horrorclown.
posted by acb at 3:20 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


NY Mag: All the Terrifying Things That Donald Trump Did Last Week

Need a week in review? Are you not yet horribly sick to your stomach? Here's a summary of all the awful in one place. Please read slowly and take breaks; this article may be hazardous to your health.
posted by zachlipton at 3:21 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


President Shitgibbon
posted by quonsar II: smock fishpants and the temple of foon at 3:21 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


Is there any way not to do a derail of name calling?
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 3:23 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


President Shitgibbon

Alright, yeah, but that's too damn funny to be used on him. I can't even say that shit without snickering, and I don't want my id to associate smiling with that ridiculous taint biscuit.
posted by Mooski at 3:23 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]





personally I avoid saying the orange fuckwad's name because I don't think he deserves that level of respect, not because I'm afraid of it


Yup. I find myself using Mr. Leibowitz's name for the guy, Fuckface Von Clownstick.
posted by longdaysjourney at 3:24 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


So, Sam Johnson, the sponsor of the end-Social-Security bill "wrote" an op-ed in the Dallas News that just went online, in case you want to see how they're spinning this:

Here's how we can fix Social Security without raising taxes [warning: propaganda]
posted by melissasaurus at 3:26 PM on December 9, 2016


SSI is an entitlement, SSDI is not.
Regardless of what you pay in, if you are a disabled US citizen, you can get SSI.
SSDI and Medicare you pay into and have to pay into for ten years to get the benefit.
posted by AlexiaSky at 3:38 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


Yeah, how the fuck did stuff like SSI come to be known as "entitlements"?! Like I get why the right started calling them that, because they are fucking assholes, but why the hell do I see anyone else calling things like SSI or pensions or any other thing that you paid for an "entitlement"? Fucks sake, language matters.

Er, because they are literally things people are entitled to receive?
posted by dilettante at 3:40 PM on December 9, 2016 [13 favorites]


[One deleted. Sorry, AskMe isn't the place to take side discussions you don't want to have happen here. And, some folks are annoyed by the "make up names for Trump" thing, so maybe let's not go a ton further in that direction -- chat's open if folks really want to riff.]
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 3:40 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]




Zarc- only part A (hospitalization) and Part B (doctors visits) are free, for original Medicare which is an 80/20 plan.

Part D is pretty much never free.

Some people do get it paid for by state programs and such.


AlexiaSky, I'm intimately aware of all the numbers, thanks. My mom is on Medicare A, B, has just signed up for a D prescription plan and was recently hospitalized. I'm handling her paperwork and forms. Her only income is social security. She gets A free. She pays $104.90 monthly for B. It is not free.

We just signed her up for a "D" prescription plan this past Wednesday, for which she will pay a monthly premium starting in January. There is a cap and a donut hole gap on that plan. There were D plans available to her here in NY that had a very low monthly premium but offered limited coverage, a high deductible and low prescription cap. Not ideal, but within reach for some. In certain states, social security's Extra Help program allows access to zero premium D plans. Yes, you're right that there are a number of programs in various states that will cover the cost of B premiums or other medical costs. In NYC or state, they include medicaid and/or EPIC and/or Access NYC. Low income and limited to no resources are typical qualifications for those programs. Social Security offers "Extra Help" to cover some costs as well. NYC has an "Rx" discount card that offers virtually no help.

It is extremely difficult for people to live on social security in NYC with no savings or other income unless one is living in a facility. I assume that's true for most cities.
posted by zarq at 3:49 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


Yeah, how the fuck did stuff like SSI come to be known as "entitlements"

I heard it derives from something that's an old usage in common law. In an entitlement, one does not have to qualify for the benefit after entering a well-defined class (like being over 65). This is different from some benefit, say, unemployment, that you have to have an affirmative case for; not everyone who loses their job gets it. Unemployment benefits are not an entitlement.

So re-framing of what was basically a technical term to connote the negative sense of people who act "entitled" or who think they are, people who think the rules don't count for them, or that the world owes them a living, was done. Just by repeating it as much as possible. Entitlements. It's classic Atwater/Rove stuff.
posted by thelonius at 3:50 PM on December 9, 2016 [19 favorites]


Official policy of the United States of America is that science isn't real and everything works better if you privatize it. I can't imagine this will be reversed in our lifetimes. We'd best start adopting the Checkovian attitude of "we do things now so future generations can be happy" as we make our decisions because the current group in charge is only concerned about the bottom line right at this moment and screw the future.
posted by Joey Michaels at 3:50 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


Yeah, entitlement is something you are ENTITLED to receive as fair return on your paying in. It's something you are literally OWED. The fact that the right has apparently made entitlement a bad word is the REAL linguistic fuckery here.
posted by threeturtles at 3:50 PM on December 9, 2016 [61 favorites]


"Fuck you, future me, I've got mine now."
posted by Joey Michaels at 3:50 PM on December 9, 2016 [12 favorites]


Most government services you aren't required to pay for in order to receive. "Entitlements" are specific government payments that Congress doesn't have to appropriate for each year in order to be paid ... as long as the authorizing legislation hasn't repealed (or sunset, although no major entitlement program of which I am aware has a sunset), and there's enough money by way of tax collections and debt ceiling room, the government pays them automatically.
posted by MattD at 3:50 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


And, quite to the contrary of what some people are saying, an "entitlement" can be reduced or eliminated if its authorizing legislation is amended to that effect or repealed altogether, and there's no recourse at all.
posted by MattD at 3:51 PM on December 9, 2016


Sorry to break this up .... in theory, but not wholly in practice, the gross dollar amount of most entitlement spending is unlimited, because the authorizing legislation requires anyone who meets the criteria to have the benefit, and will often have benefit cost escalators based upon inflation, or just a requirement that services or goods of a specific character and quality be rendered (and thus implicitly requiring that spending rise to the cost of the goods or services).
posted by MattD at 3:54 PM on December 9, 2016


You turned your memail off, and this is completely inappropriate to post here, so here's [pastebin] a possible answer. NSFAnyone/anything.

THANKS FOR THE NIGHTMARES

posted by zarq at 3:55 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Henry Rollins on trump (starts at around the 23 min mark) also, THE RAWLINS!
I swear these threads are like being able to break surface after sinking deeper and deeper into a body of water.
posted by xcasex at 3:56 PM on December 9, 2016 [16 favorites]


"fiscally responsible" is just dog whistle for "won't spend your tax dollars on helping the poor or the marginalized"
posted by Gymnopedist at 3:56 PM on December 9, 2016 [27 favorites]


I'm not talking about technical legal definitions, I'm talking about the word's meaning. "The amount to which a person has a right." "A right to benefits specified by law or contract." Like most laws or contracts you probably find a way to nullify or change them, but that doesn't change the fact that one party met the conditions and now the other party is trying to back out.
posted by threeturtles at 3:56 PM on December 9, 2016


"fiscally responsible" is just dog whistle for "keep shrinking the government until you can drown it in a bathtub"

The infrastructure improvement "panic" now going on is just a belated realization that these policies don't work, but without the realization about the policies that created the situation in the first place.

Etc etc all across our rotting society.
posted by hippybear at 3:58 PM on December 9, 2016 [12 favorites]


Zarq- you are right. Part b is only free if you are dual eligible for Medicare and Medicaid (the population I work with the most)
posted by AlexiaSky at 3:59 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Fiscally responsible" is just dog whistle for "won't spend your tax dollars on helping the poor or the marginalized"

Fiscally responsible is not wanting to spend my tax dollars* to help "those" people. But when my party's in power and can slide those dollars my way, spend away.

* Though this category includes lots who actually take out more than they put in. But they're not takers like "those" people.
posted by chris24 at 4:12 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


Yaaay! New election threa*uncontrollable vomiting*

You only have 75 more to go
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 4:13 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Amani Al-Khatahtbeh, founder of muslimgirl.com, was detained at JFK today for refusing to remove her headscarf "for identification purposes" (she's a US citizen and all of her photo ID is with her headscarf on). Story in this screenshot on Twitter. Separately, she shared her experiences of anti-Muslim bigotry in a video posted yesterday as part of Project Nur's The Secret Life of Muslims.
posted by melissasaurus at 4:15 PM on December 9, 2016 [21 favorites]


No Government Shutdown: Senate Democrats Drop Objections To Funding Bill

That means Congress will adjourn for the year with a final, familiar act: passing a short-term funding bill that will keep the government running for a few more months. This measure's funding runs out in April.

...With House lawmakers already back home for the holidays on Friday — and zero interest from GOP leaders to re-open negotiations — Democrats backed down in time to avert a midnight Friday shutdown.

posted by futz at 4:22 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Along those lines, I think Evan McMullin has earned the retirement of 'McMuffin'.
Except he seems to be into it.
You might even say he's lovin' it.
posted by indubitable at 4:26 PM on December 9, 2016 [38 favorites]


And that means they just passed the waiver for Mattis without a debate too. Great courage guys.
posted by zachlipton at 4:27 PM on December 9, 2016 [13 favorites]


Surely that law that was just waived was in place for a reason. But I guess reason doesn't apply anymore.

And so now we can be clear: the Senate will just roll over on every Trump appointee without a challenge. Yay! *fuck*
posted by hippybear at 4:29 PM on December 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


This is fun, but the 19th century Democratic and Republican parties don't map particularly well to the 21st century versions.

That's true in more ways than not, especially socially, but they always and consistently been the party of finance and industry. In terms of economic policy, the Republicans have gone from "government should stay out of business except to subsidize it" in the 1870s all the way to "government should stay out of business except to subsidize it" in the 2010s!
posted by absalom at 4:31 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


I guess the upside of all this is that the immediate post-election suspense of "oh shit, what terrible things is this guy going to try to do?" is dispelled now that we know the answer is apparently "all of them." So there's still dread and, for too many, suffering and harm, but hey, no pesky uncertainty.
posted by FelliniBlank at 4:32 PM on December 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


Why are Democrats such limp noodles when they get elected to Congress? I don't understand. Like many here on MetaFilter I've pretty much given up on a show of force from any of the Democrats but I cannot understand why. There are plenty on the Right who act with passion and determination.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:33 PM on December 9, 2016 [19 favorites]


And, some folks are annoyed by the "make up names for Trump" thing, so maybe let's not go a ton further in that direction

Yeah, okay, but I'm keeping shitgibbon for myself, 'cause that's funny.

*cackle*
posted by Mooski at 4:35 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


Like many here on MetaFilter I've pretty much given up on a show of force from any of the Democrats but I cannot understand why. There are plenty on the Right who act with passion and determination.

My personal head canon is the left is more susceptible to impostor syndrome. This also tends to explain why so many of us accept false equivalency; we're much more willing to consider the possibility we're wrong and we don't know what the hell we're talking about.
posted by Mooski at 4:39 PM on December 9, 2016 [31 favorites]


can we please just get over ourselves and refer to Trump by his goddam fucking name

Yes yes. Millionaire Sex Predator Donald Trump.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 4:41 PM on December 9, 2016 [11 favorites]


I wish I had time to read this thread. Unfortunately, my wife's home-cooked posole stew and a late-night jazz gig are fast approaching. I had lunch today with an old friend, also an artist and a musician, and he said he went to bed thinking about a Trumpian future and woke up thinking about the same. Damn. It is increasingly true, that despite what Slavoj Zizek and other leftists say--and have been saying for-fucking-ever--that there is a revolutionary silver lining to this cloud...that this is not the case. With each tweet and cabinet appointment The Trump makes, I get more discouraged. What form our protest makes is up to the Magic 8-Ball, but if there is massive protest (and I promise that my body will be on the streets: prison is my retirement plan), I'll be there. I don't let this mini-dystopian future dominate my body-mind, but it sure is fucking discouraging.
posted by kozad at 4:42 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


that means they just passed the waiver for Mattis without a debate too.

No, they passed a pre waiver to the waiver. Essentially they passed a measure limiting debate on the waiver to 10 hours. It will still be debated and voted on.
posted by corb at 4:43 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


@PoliticsWolf Amazingly, GOP argued MI didn't need a recount because there was no evidence of fraud, while they push a new voter ID law to combat fraud...

Yes this has been a weird election cycle in that respect. There have been a number of different Republican leaders, including our own dear PEOTUS,crying voter fraud while other Republican leaders, including many Republican Governors, claiming there was no voter fraud. Yet somehow even thought the Republicans won this Presidential election, the idea that there was widespread voter fraud is being cited as the reason more voter restrictions need to be implemented. It's is just as though they want to have their cake but eat it too.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:43 PM on December 9, 2016 [14 favorites]




Like many here on MetaFilter I've pretty much given up on a show of force from any of the Democrats but I cannot understand why. There are plenty on the Right who act with passion and determination.

I agree that this does seem like a worrying pattern in general but this case illustrates how tricky it can be, because I think the GOP would probably actually prefer to walk away for the break with the government shut down, gleeful to let it remain closed until congress reopens, consequences be damned if not outright anticipated. You can't really play chicken when the other side wants the head on collision.
posted by feloniousmonk at 4:47 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


If the Democrats in Congress put forth 1% of the effort Mike Hot-Pence is displaying and actually started building a broad public movement to defend Social Security, Medicare, and the ACA, I'd feel a whole lot better right now.
posted by zachlipton at 4:47 PM on December 9, 2016 [15 favorites]


Not that there will be any repercussions...Also, there are so many violations that it is almost impossible to pull a snippet from the article and do it justice.

Pro-Trump Group Blew by Basic Campaign Finance Laws. The America Comes First PAC did not disclose its donors before Election Day. And its top funder is banned from the securities industry.

“Basically they’re not obeying any campaign finance law whatsoever,” Weiner said. “That’s why we have disclosure requirements, because we want to see who is influencing the election and we want that disclosed in a timely manner so voters can make an informed choice.”
posted by futz at 4:54 PM on December 9, 2016 [11 favorites]


And so now we can be clear: the Senate will just roll over on every Trump appointee without a challenge. Yay! *fuck*

Not far above these comments, there are reports from non-crazy people that it was sufficiently obvious that Giuliani would not be able to be confirmed that there was no point even nominating him.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 4:54 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


No, they passed a pre waiver to the waiver.

Yes, this is being spun on DailyKos as an actual example of Democratic spine. Apparently the Republicans intended to put the Mattis waiver in the bill, but the Dems said "go ahead and make our day." Realizing that they own all their own shit now the Republicans blinked and put in the pre waiver thing which makes it look like they did something, but actually makes no realistic difference, so they wouldn't have to follow through on their own threat.
posted by Bringer Tom at 4:55 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


Meanwhile in Arkansas....

A third newly re-elected Democratic state representative has announced himself a Republican, leaving the Dems with 24 in a hundred.

@PoliticoCharlie When Bill Clinton was first elected governor there, there were 94 Democrats in the Arkansas House, and just 6 Republicans

So what the hell is going on? Are people running as Democrats and then once they get elected tearing off their masks to show their true colors or are Democrats throwing their hands up in the air and joining the winning side? Any Razorbacks want to fill me in?
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:57 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


and oh god I even hate the previously-totally-fine word "trump" now too.

I'm playing in a D&D Amber Diceless Roleplaying game campaign at the moment (based on Roger Zelazny's novels.) One of the important fictional items in the game are cards with people and places on them, which characters can use to contact those people telepathically or to teleport to the places. These are known as trumps. So like 90 times per game session someone says, "I trump so-and-so" or "I trump to such-a-place" or "do you have your trumps?" or "Do we have a trump for that?"

We are in Australia, and it still got so that our dungeon master's wife asked us to play in a different room because she couldn't stand hearing that word anymore.
posted by lollusc at 4:57 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


Trump is now trying to sell "Inaugural Membership Cards" for $35+. But hurry--vote on the design by "11:59pm TONIGHT." There's always another scam.
posted by zachlipton at 5:01 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]




Trump is now trying to sell "Inaugural Membership Cards" for $35+. But hurry--vote on the design by "11:59pm TONIGHT." There's always another scam.

OMG are the next four years going to be just a long string of late night advertisement money-raking opportunities?
posted by hippybear at 5:04 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


Where's the shadow government when you need it...
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 5:04 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


So what the hell is going on?

Most of those 94 Democrats from the 80's would have been very conservative. Arkansas lagged the rest of the south by a few years in having their Democrats switch to being Republican without changing much of their ideology.
posted by honestcoyote at 5:05 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


The CIA has concluded that Russia intervened in the election to help Donald Trump win.
Some of the Republicans in the briefing also seemed opposed to the idea of going public with such explosive allegations in the final stages of an election, a move that they argued would only rattle public confidence and play into Moscow’s hands.
Why? Did Republicans actually think it would be improper for a government agency to make statements in the final stages of an election that could influence people's votes? That's crazy talk!
posted by zachlipton at 5:09 PM on December 9, 2016 [44 favorites]


OMG are the next four years going to be just a long string of late night advertisement money-raking opportunities?

But wait, there's more!
posted by Servo5678 at 5:10 PM on December 9, 2016 [14 favorites]


Why are Democrats such limp noodles when they get elected to Congress? I don't understand. Like many here on MetaFilter I've pretty much given up on a show of force from any of the Democrats but I cannot understand why. There are plenty on the Right who act with passion and determination.

This is an effect of the liberal filter-bubble. Having spent a good chuck of time over the last 8 years listening to AM talk radio and reading conservative websites, I've seen the other side say this about the GOP as well. They often complain about having circular firing squads and GOP weakness in the face of the discipline of the left.
posted by joedan at 5:15 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


The CIA has concluded that Russia intervened in the election to help Donald Trump win posted by EarBucket is worth a read.

Apparently, even when 17 intelligence agencies tell lawmakers that Russia is involved in messing with our electoral process in some manner it isn't enough to convince the Repubs. I guess interpreting Intel is now partisan too. Of course trump chooses to dismiss it out of hand because that would mean that he was not a clean Winner.
Fuck 'em all.
posted by futz at 5:19 PM on December 9, 2016 [12 favorites]


>This is an effect of the liberal filter-bubble. Having spent a good chuck of time over the last 8 years listening to AM talk radio and reading conservative websites, I've seen the other side say this about the GOP as well. They often complain about having circular firing squads and GOP weakness in the face of the discipline of the left.

You really think so? Republicans have been really good since 2008 at moving in lockstep - they all seem to vote the same way on all important legislation, and they did a great job of keeping Obama from being able to accomplish many of his election promises. We'll see how the democrats do the next 4 years, but I have a hard time seeing them becoming nearly as unified in opposition to Trump as republicans were to Obama, and Trump is by any measure the far more controversial president. Where are Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi announcing how we're going to stand up to Trump?

Don't get me wrong, I kind of like that democrats in congress aren't all in lockstep - the behavior of the republican party has led to major dysfunction in congress, and I see no reason not to work with Trump if he proposes things that will truly help people, but you can't say they aren't damned good at it.
posted by zug at 5:22 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


Or, in other words, “liberals fall in love, conservatives fall in line”
posted by acb at 5:28 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


I think that we all tend to play closer attention to the day-to-day machinations of our party and as a result we tend to see our side as being chaotic and the other side as being a uniform bloc. For instance, Breitbart is currently losing it's shit about Trump nominating a pro-immigration Labor Secretary and right-wing Twitter is trying to get #NeverPuzder trending. But that sort of thing is usually invisible to us.
posted by joedan at 5:30 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


So Obama knew of Russian interference before Nov 8th and said nothing beyond a vague and unsupported accusation. No public pushback.

He knew of Comey's machinations and did nothing. And did nothing in response when it proved decisive.

It looks more and more like the post-WW2 world order has fallen, and it was due to a Russian information war where the US declined to fight back.

How long before Republicans openly acknowledge our new alliance/subservience to Russia?
posted by T.D. Strange at 5:31 PM on December 9, 2016 [12 favorites]


According to several officials, McConnell raised doubts about the underlying intelligence and made clear to the administration that he would consider any effort by the White House to challenge the Russians publicly an act of partisan politics.

I swear to g-d, Mitch you are the dickiest shitbag of fuck to ever pretend to be sentient. You are a fuckin' test man.
posted by petebest at 5:34 PM on December 9, 2016 [26 favorites]


So Obama knew of Russian interference before Nov 8th and said nothing beyond a vague and unsupported accusation. No public pushback.

Well, you have to admit that this is pretty scary. NOT

According to several officials, McConnell raised doubts about the underlying intelligence and made clear to the administration that he would consider any effort by the White House to challenge the Russians publicly an act of partisan politics.
posted by futz at 5:36 PM on December 9, 2016


What happened to No Fucks Given Obama?
posted by futz at 5:37 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


CNN Donald Trump's 'Celebrity Apprentice' deal may include money from brands
President-elect Donald Trump's financial arrangement with "Celebrity Apprentice" could provide him with a cut of the money generated by NBC's product integration deals for the show, a Hollywood source with direct knowledge of the arrangement told CNNMoney.

For years, Trump has received a portion of the revenue from the show's product integration deals, the source said. If that arrangement is still in place, it is now a potential avenue of influence for companies that want to get the ear of Trump and his administration, and presents a thorny situation for Comcast/NBCUniversal, which controls the deals.
TPM Maybe the Answer Is That He Can't Divest
Maybe he can't divest because he's too underwater to do so or more likely he's too dependent on current and expanding cash flow to divest or even turn the reins over to someone else.

Late this afternoon we got news that Trump will remain as executive producer of The Apprentice, now starring Arnold Schwarzenegger. That is, quite simply, weird. The presidency is time consuming and complicated, even for the lazier presidents. Does Trump really need to do this? Can he do it, just in terms of hours in the day? Of course, it may simply be a title that entitles him to draw a check. But does he need the check that bad?
Josh Marshall speculates in that second link that perhaps the reason Trump sold all of his stock in June (and did not tell anyone) was NOT because he thought he was going to be president (he clearly thought he wasn't) but because he had loaned $50 million to his campaign and could not get any major donors to contribute until he forgave that loan. His stock portfolio was estimated to be worth around $38 million.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 5:39 PM on December 9, 2016 [11 favorites]


Whoa—chant of "lock her up!" from the crowd, Trump replies: "That plays great before the election – now we don’t care"

The Leopards Eating People's Faces party bit gets ever more accurate every day with this guy. Part of eschewing political correctness apparently includes telling us exactly in what ways he's a hypocrite, and nobody cares.
posted by zachlipton at 5:39 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


The difference between the Dems and Repubs is the Repubs fight dirty. The Dems don't want to fuck people over all the way-- they'll blink.
posted by blnkfrnk at 5:40 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


According to several officials, McConnell raised doubts about the underlying intelligence and made clear to the administration that he would consider any effort by the White House to challenge the Russians publicly an act of partisan politics.

[...]

McConnell’s office did not respond to a request for comment. After the election, Trump chose McConnell’s wife, Elaine Chao, as his nominee for transportation secretary.


This is fine.
posted by jason_steakums at 5:41 PM on December 9, 2016 [14 favorites]


He backed down from Mitch McConnell, that makes it worse. He could've released the underlying intelligence. Could've trotted out Brennan and Carter and Kerry to make the case. Fired Comey on the spot.

This was a choice between Trump/Russia executing regime change in the US, and Mitch McConnell whining on FOX News.
posted by T.D. Strange at 5:41 PM on December 9, 2016 [12 favorites]


On the other hand, Comey's ratfucking was okay, since it helped the Republicans.
posted by qcubed at 5:44 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


The CIA shared its latest assessment with key senators in a closed-door briefing on Capitol Hill last week, in which agency officials cited a growing body of intelligence from multiple sources. Agency briefers told the senators it was now “quite clear” that electing Trump was Russia’s goal, according to the officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss intelligence matters.

Миссия выполнена.

Some of the Republicans in the briefing also seemed opposed to the idea of going public with such explosive allegations in the final stages of an election . . .

DID THEY.
posted by petebest at 5:44 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


An interesting observation from Gelman's 19 things post:
Republicans have done better among rich voters than among poor voters in every election since the dawn of polling, with the only exceptions being 1952, 1956, and 1960, which featured moderate Republican Dwight Eisenhower and then moderate Democrat John Kennedy. Typically the upper third of income votes 10 to 20 percentage points more Republican than the lower third. This was such a big deal that my colleagues and I wrote a book about it! (http://press.princeton.edu/titles/9030.html) But 2016 was different. For example, here are the exit polls (http://www.cnn.com/election/results/exit-polls): Clinton won 53 percent of the under-$30,000 vote and 47 percent of those making over $100,000, a difference of only 6 percentage points, much less than the usual income gap. And we found similar minimal income-voting gradients when looking at other surveys. Will the partisan income divide return in future years?
posted by Coventry at 5:46 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


Besides the Congressional aspects, one of the important things in the WaPo story is the CIA's conclusion that Russia sought to elect Trump, rather than merely spread FUD and cast doubt on the integrity of the process. Both are certainly plausible goals, but the former is even more alarming.
posted by zachlipton at 5:47 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]



Whoa—chant of "lock her up!" from the crowd, Trump replies: "That plays great before the election – now we don’t care"

The Leopards Eating People's Faces party bit gets ever more accurate every day with this guy. Part of eschewing political correctness apparently includes telling us exactly in what ways he's a hypocrite, and nobody cares.


i mean ideally he'll be torn to pieces by his own furious screaming former supporters and we can get on with life and sanity
posted by poffin boffin at 5:49 PM on December 9, 2016 [11 favorites]


In the 60s people though Red Dawn would come from airships and troop carriers landing on the beaches of California.

It actually came from the Republican Party deciding en mass to hand over control of the country to a puppet president in exchange for tax cuts.
posted by T.D. Strange at 5:49 PM on December 9, 2016 [48 favorites]


I still looking forward with some interest to DJT's next press conference which is supposed to be held December 15. Back when he first talked about it the agenda was going to be his big announcement that he was turning his entire business over to his children to run. Only things have changed quickly in Trumpland. Ivanka appears to be moving to Washington DC and taking on the role of First Lady which means she will not have time to run his business. Also he has this new side gig as Executive Producer on the Apprentice. I wonder if he will cancel the press conference or make some other announcement-- like naming his SOS nominee or talking up his big plans for Inauguration Day.

Yeah it is alarming that Russia wants Trump to be President because we have to ask ourselves, why? Is it because Putin has outstanding loans he can hold over Trump's head? Blackmail material? Or simply because he believes that Trump is way over his head and clueless?
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 5:49 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Surely this? I mean, I know the football is going to inevitably be yanked away from me, but surely? this?

Or is this the republican master plan? Trump gets elected, Russian ties get traction, they impeach him? Come on. Throw me a fucking bone.
posted by lydhre at 5:50 PM on December 9, 2016


This was a choice between Trump/Russia executing regime change in the US, and Mitch McConnell whining on FOX News.

To be fair, this was a proper and right attempt to face a perceived threat to our democracy with bipartisan consultation and support. It was of the utmost importance to Obama that the situation be handled in an orderly, considered and united fashion, because to blow it up so close to election day would be seen to be unfairly supporting Clinton, leading to somewhat more based accusations of rigging from the candidate with - at best - a 23% chance of winning.

Okay. He haz a regret.
posted by petebest at 5:52 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


There is no bone.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 5:53 PM on December 9, 2016


I read in the Facebook post of a friend-of-a-friend-who-knows-a-grizzled-Russian-guy that, according to the Russian guy, we are lucky that Trump won, and that without his win, the United States would be at risk of direct attacks from Russia. Apparently, Putin likes our PEOTUS, so we are safe (from Russia) for now (ha ha).
posted by witchen at 5:54 PM on December 9, 2016


'I never thought the leopard might NOT really care about eating her face,' sobs woman who voted for the Leopards Eating People's Faces Party.
posted by zachlipton at 5:57 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


The 18 year old Muslim woman who was harassed on the subway last week has been missing for two days. :(
posted by melissasaurus at 5:57 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]




Keep in mind that the Congressional briefing was in September, before the race tightened in the great October shift to Trump. President Obama and everyone else were looking at the same polls as the Clinton campaign and surely thought Trump had little chance at that point.
posted by zachlipton at 6:00 PM on December 9, 2016


Yeah it is alarming that Russia wants Trump to be President

Ahh bupbupbup bup- hold on. That's not what's being said in that article. What's being said is: Russian state-sponsored hackers deliberately broke into state voter registration systems and the DNC servers to ensure victory for Donald Turdfungus.

The link to the hacks is clear. The link from the Kremlin to WikiLeaks is clear. The intent is clear. And GOP complicity is clear.

Yes, they do want him to be elected - AND . . . They made it happen. That's what the article is saying.
posted by petebest at 6:01 PM on December 9, 2016 [19 favorites]


@JuddLegum 3. If you are a corp or foreign gov't seeking to send $ to Trump, you can 1. Stay at his hotel 2. Buy ad on Apprentice 3. Rent office space

This is what happens when you elect a business opportunist (I won't call him a businessman) with no experience in government. I have no doubt that DJT thinks all these things are fine and the President can do no wrong because he is the Boss of Everything. I'm sure he sees absolutely no problem with the Bahraini monarchy renting rooms at the Old Post Office to throw a birthday party for their country. Why shouldn't they spend money at his place of business?!

The 18 year old Muslim woman who was harassed on the subway last week has been missing for two days.

Jesus. I'm hoping she is hiding out at a friend's house ("She was wearing a black jacket, black head scarf, black yoga pants and was carrying a bag of clothes, police said.")
I've been thinking that maybe it is time for a National Scarf Day.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:02 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


Or is this the republican master plan? Trump gets elected, Russian ties get traction, they impeach him? Come on. Throw me a fucking bone.

It certainly makes the transition clusterfuck make a more sense... no "draining the swamp", no divesting, weird shit like meeting with Al Gore on climate change and then turning around and nominating a lump of coal to head the EPA (in the words of Keeping it 1600), Pence taking more security briefings than Trump... if Reince and the traditional Republican faction are sitting back and not even bothering to stop Trump from doing all this ridiculous shit while they load up appointments because they know the plan, it all makes a lot more sense.
posted by jason_steakums at 6:04 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


Why are Democrats such limp noodles when they get elected to Congress? I don't understand. Like many here on MetaFilter I've pretty much given up on a show of force from any of the Democrats but I cannot understand why.

I think what chris24 was trying to tell me yesterday in the argument about George McGovern is that they think they're not going to be electable if they seem too progressive. Whether the "McGovern lost because he was a progressive" narrative is true or not, if the mainstream Democrats of the time believed that it does explain their seemingly cowardly betrayal of progressive values.
posted by Coventry at 6:07 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


I don't buy the "master plan" argument. I think it's a clusterfuck of complicity: the GOP congressional leadership has its tax cuts / fuck-the-poor promised land in sight, and the means justify the end, even if the means were supplied by a charlatan and a foreign power.
posted by holgate at 6:08 PM on December 9, 2016 [38 favorites]


Keep in mind that the Congressional briefing was in September, before the race tightened in the great October shift to Trump.

That's when there were public calls for information including Harry Reid's letter to Comey. This is based on what that information was, which was presented last week.

The CIA shared its latest assessment with key senators in a closed-door briefing on Capitol Hill last week, in which agency officials cited a growing body of intelligence from multiple sources.
posted by petebest at 6:11 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


@SopanDeb Trump in MI: "We’re gonna start saying Merry Christmas again...I think [department stores] are gonna start putting up Merry Christmas."

From the transcript of his speech: How about those Department stores? They have the bells and they have the red walls and they have the snow but they don't have Merry Christmas. I think they are going to start putting up Merry Christmas.

I'm sure this makes perfect sense to his fans but to me it sounds like gibberish. They have red walls but they don't have Merry Christmas? Is he talking about signs? Is he talking about greeters? Then he says he thinks they are going to start putting up Merry Christmas presumably because he got elected. You know what I think? I think the next time his fans are in a store they are going to look around and see signs that say "Merry Christmas" and think it was due to Donald Trump being made President.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:12 PM on December 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


I think it's a clusterfuck of complicity

Agreed. The GOP leadership is complicit in the Russian scheme to steal the election for Trump. That is Clusterfucked-Up. And almost certainly unethical. Possibly illegal. Maybe damnable.
posted by petebest at 6:18 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


I overheard two Trump voting coworkers, one of whom has let slip with some nasty casual racism before, talking privately today about how they want to make a point to say happy holidays and find a respectful alternative to a stocking on the office door for a third coworker who doesn't celebrate Christmas... If the War on Christmas shit doesn't get traction with them in private that really makes it seem even more like a social signaling thing intended to piss off liberals than a deeply held belief.
posted by jason_steakums at 6:19 PM on December 9, 2016 [12 favorites]


I don't buy the "master plan" argument. I think it's a clusterfuck of complicity: the GOP congressional leadership has its tax cuts / fuck-the-poor promised land in sight, and the means justify the end, even if the means were supplied by a charlatan and a foreign power.

People want to believe in the GOP master plan for the same reason people believe in the Illuminati and what not -- otherwise our world is a horrifying, meandering shitshow that would be hilarious if it were a cinematic satire. But, it is not a cinematic satire.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 6:20 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


That's when there were public calls for information including Harry Reid's letter to Comey. This is based on what that information was which was presented last week.

Sorry, I didn't make my point very clearly. What I meant was that people, President Obama, Congressional Dems, etc..., thought they didn't need to make a giant public outcry about Russian interference because they thought the election was essentially over anyway, and based on the polls it was. It was only as a result of the October shift that things changed.

Or as I see @nycsouthpaw just sort of made my point for me:
The thing no one will say--from NBC to the WH--is they didn't tell the people what they knew bc they thought the election was in the bag.
A whole lot of people didn't take risks to make disclosures about Trump because it was easier not to and every model said Clinton would win.
charitable read of Comey's conduct: Trump was gonna lose and he didn't want to catch a bunch of shit from his oversight committees after.
posted by zachlipton at 6:20 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


So Obama knew of Russian interference before Nov 8th and said nothing beyond a vague and unsupported accusation.

In fairness to him, pretty much everyone had stopped believing CIA intelligence was worth the paper it was written on by the turn of the century, but they have a pretty good track record when it comes to manipulating elections. If it had come out that Obama had discredited Trump on the basis of a CIA claim, it would have further damaged the legitimacy of the US ruling elite, including Clinton.

I mean, I still don't believe it. The publicly available evidence shows only that someone with access to the earlier fancy/cozy/whatever-bear hacking artifacts was involved. That is at least as plausibly explained by the same Russian hackers moonlighting independently of Russia-the-state, or someone who's forensically examined the earlier hacks who wants to pin it on the Russians.
posted by Coventry at 6:20 PM on December 9, 2016


Large business are going to stay with the generic "Happy Holidays". The election of Dumbfuck isn't going to change this. The businesses who always used Merry Xmas (mom and pops who benefit from pro 'Murika consumers will continue on doing so as is their right) will crow this as a victory but larger stores are not going to alienate any potential customer by insisting their employees use Merry Xmas. Sorry trump voters who care about stupid shit like this, almost everywhere you go, Happy Holidays will prevail and I hope that it gets on your last nerve.
posted by futz at 6:26 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


The other interesting question is who gave this story to the Post. Seems like it's either intelligence folks, the White House, or Congressional Democrats. It's a pretty huge leak.

The problem is that it's reasonably likely much of the intelligence relies on intercepted communications we'll never ever see, so there simply won't be enough publicly available evidence, whether the classified evidence is the real deal or Iraq-level nonsense.
posted by zachlipton at 6:28 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


In Neo-Soviet Russia, election fucks you?
posted by vrakatar at 6:29 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


If there were clear evidence of Russian interference to the point that it was like, impeach or face electoral backlash in the next non-fucked-with election, Republicans will go even harder on ramming a Ryan agenda through for fear that they've already lost the confidence of the electorate anyways so why not.
posted by jason_steakums at 6:30 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


Yeah it is alarming that Russia wants Trump to be President because we have to ask ourselves, why? Is it because Putin has outstanding loans he can hold over Trump's head? Blackmail material? Or simply because he believes that Trump is way over his head and clueless?

That's the million dollar question. You're Russia, your wildest plan improbably succeeded, and you now have a direct line to, if not outright control over the incoming POTUS. What now? They can't move too overtly and risk a big enough public outcry to trigger impeachment, so a nuclear launch of our own weapons against us probably not a concern, but Trump will leave them free to reconquer all of Syria for Assad, and he may redirect our forces to help them. And more "fights against terrorism" in the Middle East will come at Russia's direction and serve their interests, not whatever ours were before 11/8/16.

More broadly, they're clearly trying to engineer the breakup of NATO and the EU, supporting and hacking on behalf of similarly aligned right wing parties in at least France, Italy, Germany, Hungary, Poland and possibly the UK. The most logical immediate goal is to regain control of territory lost in the breakup of the USSR. They're poised for a broader invasion of Ukraine. They could easily move to retake the Baltic states and Georgia once the NATO guarantee is gone. Then what? What does Putin want if all his immediate plans come to fruition, because they're well on track to do so.
posted by T.D. Strange at 6:32 PM on December 9, 2016 [15 favorites]


Blackmail material?
member Kompromat? Sure, I member.
posted by vrakatar at 6:38 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


More Americans Look to Congressional Democrats Than to Trump for Solutions

The headline is a bit misleading: Republicans split their choice between Congressional Republicans and Trump, while Dems didn't split. But:
Finally, a resounding 80 percent said Washington should prioritize “protecting Medicare and Social Security from any reductions to ensure those who paid a contribution receive their promised benefits,” while just 16 percent wanted greater emphasis on “reducing Medicare and Social Security benefits for upper-income seniors to help reduce the federal deficit.” Those numbers varied little across any demographic group—though Trump voters were even more resistant than Clinton supporters to cuts in the giant entitlement programs for the elderly, the poll found.
The failure of Democrats to successfully brand Republicans as "the party dedicated to cutting Social Security and Medicare" this election cycle is an enormous failure. That should have been a national message throughout the entire campaign. If we had run on that, even if the election results didn't change at all, we could have forced every Republican up for re-election to state a position on protecting these programs, and we could have gotten more Republicans in close races to promise no cuts.
posted by zachlipton at 6:42 PM on December 9, 2016 [22 favorites]


The most logical immediate goal is to regain control of territory lost in the breakup of the USSR.

. . . After destroying the dollar and maybe some military horsie games. First things first. The market's up, the Western banks are back - and Trump's love, money, is held in Ghina anyway. He won't care when the banks take it in the nuts to start the show.

Did we mention he's easily manipulated and an idiot?

2017 is gonna make 2016 look like 2011, man!
/Flashback®
posted by petebest at 6:42 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Oh my (my transcription, blame me for typos):
Transition Statement On Claims Of Foreign Interference In U.S. Elections

(New York, NY) - These are the same people that said Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. The election ended a long time ago in one of the biggest Electoral College victories in history. It's now time to move on and "Make America Great Again."
Anyone want to bet we'll see some tweets tonight? It's Friday night...
posted by zachlipton at 6:44 PM on December 9, 2016


This is why he's not taking intelligence briefings.

He's getting them from Russia.
posted by T.D. Strange at 6:47 PM on December 9, 2016 [21 favorites]


The failure of Democrats to successfully brand Republicans as "the party dedicated to cutting Social Security and Medicare" this election cycle is an enormous failure. That should have been a national message throughout the entire campaign. If we had run on that, even if the election results didn't change at all, we could have forced every Republican up for re-election to state a position on protecting these programs, and we could have gotten more Republicans in close races to promise no cuts.

I'm sorry but were you in a coma through 2016, zach? Paul Ryan was trying to hawk the Congressional Republican plans to rip the guts out of every entitlement program that exists. Nobody gave a flying fuck. Ryan couldn't even get it out to the base little alone anyone with someone in the media noticing and being able to give it some traction. There was just a veritable firehouse of sewage coming out of this election campaign. A turd like that is just another part of the stream.
posted by Talez at 6:47 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


Oh we'll definitely get some tweets tonight, but I wonder what ridiculous 3 am Sunday morning tweets we'll get to distract the Sunday talk shows and set this week's news agenda!
posted by jason_steakums at 6:48 PM on December 9, 2016


Think about this, Trump can now harness the NSA's complete information awareness, with known hacking of German politicians including Merkel for example, to help Russia influence German and French elections next year.
posted by T.D. Strange at 6:50 PM on December 9, 2016


I mean, I'm not sitting here thinking there's a GOP master plan but I find myself sitting here hoping that the GOP has a master plan. Because I have not yet become numb to the fact that Trump might actually be inaugurated. Trump! Inaugurated! This is the fucking Upside Down.
posted by lydhre at 6:51 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


Oh we'll definitely get some tweets tonight, but I wonder what ridiculous 3 am Sunday morning tweets we'll get to distract the Sunday talk shows and set this week's news agenda

Is there a website that saves all his tweets?
posted by futz at 6:51 PM on December 9, 2016


We're so fucked.
posted by Talez at 6:51 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


This is the fucking Upside Down.

Keep an eye on christmas lights this year. They might be trying to tell us something!
posted by futz at 6:54 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


futz: @RealRealDonaldT replicates all the tweets which are presumed to come from him personally.
posted by Coventry at 6:55 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]




Transition Statement On Claims Of Foreign Interference In U.S. Elections

(New York, NY) - These are the same people that said Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. The election ended a long time ago in one of the biggest Electoral College victories in history. It's now time to move on and "Make America Great Again."


There's no actual denial in here at all.
posted by theodolite at 6:58 PM on December 9, 2016 [27 favorites]


I guess that I should have specified that I am interested in a non twitter platform; a good old fashioned website. Maybe corrupt.af does this.
posted by futz at 6:59 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Make America Russian again for the first time? Is this enough to sway some electors maybe?
posted by vrakatar at 7:00 PM on December 9, 2016


The election ended a long time ago

The election hasn't actually ended. Or, in strictly constitutional terms, begun.
posted by holgate at 7:00 PM on December 9, 2016 [20 favorites]


Who but the Trump transition would protect Russia by attacking our own government?
posted by zachlipton at 7:01 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


The election ended a long time ago in one of the biggest Electoral College victories in history

Trump's Victory Ranks 46 of 58 in Electoral College Share
posted by kirkaracha at 7:03 PM on December 9, 2016 [19 favorites]


On Friday, the White House said President Obama had ordered a “full review” of Russian hacking during the election campaign, as pressure from Congress has grown for greater public understanding of exactly what Moscow did to influence the electoral process.

Whatever it is, has been known by some people for months. Many who no doubt expected the intelligence would become essentially academic after the election.

Within the administration, top officials from different agencies sparred over whether and how to respond. White House officials were concerned that covert retaliatory measures might risk an escalation in which Russia, with sophisticated cyber capabilities, might have less to lose than the United States, with its vast and vulnerable digital infrastructure.

What retaliatory measures?! The Turdfungus was elected! What, we're gonna blow up a bridge or photoshop Putin shirtless on horseback or something?! WTELF.

Holy shit we am become the Russian people being pandered to with shirtless leader photo shoots. Ours have bad weaves and terrible ties but - damn
posted by petebest at 7:06 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


And the CIA never said Saddam had WMD. That was the Bush administration's justification to the public and manipulation of the intelligence.
posted by T.D. Strange at 7:06 PM on December 9, 2016 [24 favorites]


At this point I wouldn't be surprised if Alaska was a part of Russia by 2019. we had to do it, the Democrats gave us no option!
posted by localhuman at 7:11 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


Really the only thing that gives me pause on thinking Russia interfered is the presence of Mattis. I don't think he'd sign on if he knew about that and he doesn't seem easily fooled. But who knows? I don't know the guy, just his public image.
posted by jason_steakums at 7:13 PM on December 9, 2016




I do think there's some question about the timing of this report on the same day that President Obama ordered a full consensus report on Russian involvement. Somebody wanted to get the CIA's version of the report out now.

(Sort of cribbed from emptywheel, but he's more conspiratorial.)
posted by zachlipton at 7:16 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


Isn't Obama giving Trump suggestions on cabinet appointments? Mattis could be one of his.

I don't care for him just because of the waiver thing but we're already living in one of the more convoluted seasons of 24 so sure why not?
posted by asteria at 7:17 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Really the only thing that gives me pause on thinking Russia interfered is the presence of Mattis.

What, fight to get himself out of power? But he's the best man for the job! No, there's got to be a better way. . . . He's got it! We'll invade Iran!
posted by petebest at 7:17 PM on December 9, 2016


Trump names Dow Chemical CEO Liveris to head Manufacturing Council

Because for too many years Americans haven't had the pleasure of their own Bhopal disaster. #MAGA
posted by Talez at 7:18 PM on December 9, 2016 [12 favorites]


Keep an eye on christmas lights this year. They might be trying to tell us something!

G-E-T O-U-T N-O-W
posted by tivalasvegas at 7:19 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


The Mattis thing in light of the Russian thing really terrifies me if the CIA report is true because I would believe "Mattis thinks he can mitigate the damage himself" or "Mattis is fine with it" long before I'd believe that Mattis is dumb. He's a smart guy and he's got to have people he trusts in the intelligence community that he's talked to about this.
posted by jason_steakums at 7:23 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


I do think there's some question about the timing of this report

Yeah, it's an interesting leak. Pussygate was on a Friday.
posted by petebest at 7:25 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


New chant at Trump Rally: Get on the train or feel the pain.

I. . . don't think they're talking about amtrak?
posted by dinty_moore at 7:26 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


I. . . don't think they're talking about amtrak?

but they love infrastructure investment so much
posted by tivalasvegas at 7:28 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


But seriously, I can't be the only one whose mind went straight to concentration camps when talking about forcing people on trains, right? Holy fuck.
posted by dinty_moore at 7:29 PM on December 9, 2016 [48 favorites]


the CIA never said Saddam had WMD.

Oh, they said it all right. It looks as though google is not going to let me link directly to it, but Timothy Weiner's outline of their reasoning starts on p 564 of Legacy of Ashes. He's a very respected journalist who's spent most of his career following the IC.

It ends by justifying Powell's famous speech on p 568 with
This was not a selective use of intelligence. It was not "cherry-picking." It was not fixing the facts to fit the war plans. It was what the intelligence said, the best intelligence the agency had to offer. Powell had spent days and nights with [CIA director] Tenet, checking and re-checking the CIA's reporting. Tenet looked him in the eye and told him it was rock solid.
BTW, if you're looking for something to read instead of watching the ongoing Trumpwreck, the whole book is great.

From the PDF document the article you linked is based on:
We judge Iraq has continued its weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programs in defiance of UN resolutions and restrictions. Baghdad has chemical and biological weapons as well as missiles with ranges in excess of UN restrictions; if left unchecked, it probably will have a nuclear weapon during this decade. (See INR alternative view at the end of these Key Judgments.)

We judge that we are seeing only a portion of Iraq's WM efforts, owing to Baghdad's vigorous denial and deception efforts. Revelations after the Gulf war starkly demonstrate the extensive efforts undertaken by Iraq to deny information. We lack specific information on many key aspects of Iraq's WMD programs.
posted by Coventry at 7:33 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


Clinton's popular vote margin passed 2.1% today.
posted by Justinian at 7:35 PM on December 9, 2016 [23 favorites]


i am going to stop pretending that i have any idea what is going to happen between now and inauguration day.
posted by murphy slaw at 7:41 PM on December 9, 2016 [36 favorites]


like, we are in 'something has gone wrong at the Large Hadron Collider and quantum uncertainty is starting to manifest at the macro scale' territory
posted by murphy slaw at 7:42 PM on December 9, 2016 [79 favorites]


From the link to emptywheel that zachlipton posted above, what seems an opinion considered:

Here’s the big takeaway. The language “a formal US assessment produced by all 17 intelligence agencies” is, like “a consensus view,” a term of art. It’s an opportunity for agencies which may have differing theories of what happened here to submit their footnotes.

That may be what Obama called for today: the formal assessment from all agencies (though admittedly, the White House purposely left the scope and intent of it vague).

Whatever that review is intended to be, what happened as soon as Obama announced it is that the CIA and/or Democratic Senators started leaking their conclusion. That’s what this story is.


According to that link, all the pieces were in place for the story of Russian interference, but until recently they didn't have a direct link between the GRU and WikiLeaks, which they think they have now. Some in the breifing apparently disagreed that it's airtight. Mitch, for one, presumably.
posted by petebest at 7:46 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]




June 3, 2015: The LHC started delivering physics data for the first time in 27 months today, after almost two years offline for re-commissioning. This new LHC run "is a bit special," says elementary particle physicist Stephane Willocq, "because it's not every day that we get to start an accelerator that runs at the highest energy ever achieved. In 2009 we started at 7 and now we're going up to 13 teraelectronvolts. This jump in energy opens up the opportunity to discover heavy new particles. This is probably the last time in our careers for us to have this chance."

June 16, 2015: The real estate mogul and TV reality star launched his presidential campaign Tuesday, ending more than two decades of persistent flirtation with the idea of running for the Oval Office.
posted by theodolite at 7:48 PM on December 9, 2016 [30 favorites]




I keep wondering, what would a sane and decent congressional majority even do in a situation where their own party's candidate for President got elected due to foreign government manipulation? Instruct the electoral college to vote for the second place finisher and hope they listen? What if they don't? Impeach even though the VP rode into office due to the same manipulations? Impeach both the prez and VP and have someone nobody cast a presidential vote for take the position? It's a seriously hard problem even under the best imaginary circumstances.
posted by jason_steakums at 7:50 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


We'll have to do the whole thing over again. Primaries start in a week.
posted by petebest at 7:55 PM on December 9, 2016 [15 favorites]


I told you, we're going to keep reliving 2016 until we get it right. Like Groundhog Day. Except it will be a year.
posted by asteria at 7:57 PM on December 9, 2016 [18 favorites]


According to that link, all the pieces were in place for the story of Russian interference, but until recently they didn't have a direct link between the GRU and WikiLeaks, which they think they have now.

Cue all the Redditors on the "Assange was secretly captured" conspiracy train freaking out in 3, 2, 1...
posted by jason_steakums at 8:01 PM on December 9, 2016


From GOP electoral college voter @TheChrisSuprun
…It isn't my place to announce other people's intentions.
I do not think I will be alone Dec 19 as GOP voting against Trump.
7:43 PM - 9 Dec 2016
posted by standardasparagus at 8:02 PM on December 9, 2016 [28 favorites]


Hillary clearly went to Ecuador and got him. You didn't really think she was in the woods talking selfies did you? Oh, my sweet summer children.
posted by asteria at 8:03 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


I just can't stop thinking about that night on ye olde election thread when the Mother Jones story about the Russian server and related investigation broke and the NY Times came right out with an FBI-sourced story disputing it that punctured the balloon. [overview of the various stories at that time.] That plus Comey...tens of thousands of votes in a handful of states and we wouldn't have to be thinking about any of this. Fuck.
posted by sallybrown at 8:04 PM on December 9, 2016 [11 favorites]




And just think there are still 21 days left in 2016! That's 21 more days of twists and turns!
posted by asteria at 8:07 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


NYT and CBS News both also running with versions of the story.
posted by zachlipton at 8:08 PM on December 9, 2016


New article from WaPo.

The CIA concluded Russia worked to elect Trump. Republicans now face an impossible choice.

“I’m going after Russia in every way you can go after Russia,” Graham said. “I think they’re one of the most destabilizing influences on the world stage. I think they did interfere with our elections, and I want [Russian President Vladimir] Putin personally to pay the price.”

In addition, any GOP effort to dig into the matter risks antagonizing the president-elect, who has said flatly that he doesn’t believe Russia interfered with the election, despite receiving intelligence briefings to the contrary. And he's proven more than willing to go after fellow Republicans who run afoul of him.

...Compounding the dilemma for these Republicans is the fact that many GOP and Trump voters are disinclined to believe Russia meddled in the election. A poll released Friday by Democratic pollster Democracy Corps showed 55 percent of Trump voters and Republicans who didn’t vote for Trump say it’s probably true that stories alleging Russian interference in the election are conspiracy theories pushed by Clinton.


Expect more seismic twitter activity from the Tower tonight. WaPo put the gloves on in this article.
posted by futz at 8:10 PM on December 9, 2016 [18 favorites]




So many times in these discussions words fail to capture the stakes of the issue. When we speak of 20 million, or 23 million people who may "lose their health insurance" if the ACA is repealed, I suspect most of your readers absorb that as a useful data point and then, quite naturally, move on. Their eyes slide to the sentence that follows.

I am writing in the hope that I can get your readers to pause for a moment and consider what this loss truly means, behind the abstractions.
posted by tivalasvegas at 8:11 PM on December 9, 2016 [18 favorites]


I am getting the uncomfortable feeling we are starting to sail into coup territory.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:12 PM on December 9, 2016 [35 favorites]


The Times story has some interesting bits:

Sourced to "senior administration officials," which would at least kind of indicate their sources aren't in Congress (because honestly, I could imagine Harry Reid having a hand in the WaPo story)

The CIA concluded that Russians hacked the RNC's computers too, but didn't release any documents from them. Another official says the FBI concluded that the RNC's systems weren't widely compromised.

Question as to whether Russia's original intent was to help Trump or just stir up FUD and gather documents that would undercut a President Clinton.
posted by zachlipton at 8:13 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


I'm actually starting to enjoy this. I have no idea why; I am certainly close to the front lines. Ascii shrug.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:13 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


zarq: I'm waiting for someone to give him the ol' Frothy Santorum treatment.

What's the most disgusting sexually-transmitted disease on the planet? Ånything that makes your junk shrivel up and fall off?


Fun(?) fact: There are cases of autoamputation of the penis due to granuloma inguinale (Donovanosis). Wouldn't be much of a stretch, is all I'm saying.
posted by smangosbubbles at 8:14 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]




I don't think it will be a coup. Either the electors will flip and we'll get Kasich/Kaine or this will be part of the eventual impeachment to pave way for Pence.
posted by asteria at 8:15 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


...Compounding the dilemma for these Republicans is the fact that many GOP and Trump voters are disinclined to believe Russia meddled in the election. A poll released Friday by Democratic pollster Democracy Corps showed 55 percent of Trump voters and Republicans who didn’t vote for Trump say it’s probably true that stories alleging Russian interference in the election are conspiracy theories pushed by Clinton.

If this drags on until Ryan starts going after social security and medicare and the people get a look at this clusterfuck cabinet in action, watch those numbers change.
posted by jason_steakums at 8:18 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


I don't think it will be a coup. Either the electors will flip and we'll get Kasich/Kaine or this will be part of the eventual impeachment to pave way for Pence.

Either of these scenarios would make me giddy with happiness at this point. And yes, I know all about Pence and how evil he is.
posted by sallybrown at 8:19 PM on December 9, 2016 [13 favorites]


because honestly, I could imagine Harry Reid having a hand in the WaPo story)

Heck, I could see Lindsey Graham having a hand in it. 2016 is a bizarro year for sure...
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 8:20 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


Republicans will never impeach, can we please stop this fantasy. They covered up Russian interference, they don't give two fucks about anything other than tax cuts and ending what's left of the welfare state. Trump was right when he said he could kill someone on 5th Avenue, if it wasn't true then, it sure as hell is now.

Beyond their sheer DGAF, they'd never impeach because Pence is a turd who could never win reelection. Trump's personality cult is required, and they won't do a damn thing to reign him in or bring him down.

I really don't understand why we're putting any stock in Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan allowing an impeachment to move forward under any conceivable set of circumstances.
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:22 PM on December 9, 2016 [55 favorites]


Maybe not a coup, maybe a walling off of the big "sanctuary" cities. Like escape from ny in reverse.
posted by vrakatar at 8:23 PM on December 9, 2016


ExxonMobil CEO Tillerson takes the lead in the Secretary of State sweepstakes. Tillerson has ties to Putin, "having negotiated a 2011 energy partnership deal with Russia that Mr. Putin said could eventually be worth as much as $500 billion. In 2012, the Kremlin bestowed the country’s Order of Friendship decoration on Mr. Tillerson."
posted by sallybrown at 8:24 PM on December 9, 2016 [14 favorites]


The weirdest thing about this Russian hacking issue to me is that I can't shake the feeling that most people just... don't care. And I also feel like Trump is aware of this, just like he knew most people didn't care whether or not he released his tax returns. So of course he's going to act like it's not a big deal.

I mean, I hope I'm wrong about this, but it's not like anyone's saying he won because Russia hacked the votes. Right? It's not like anyone is saying Russia hacked all the major American media outlets and caused them to repeatedly harp on Hillary's email server in ways that actually damaged her campaign, while they allowed all of the negative stuff in Trump's past and present to just be reported on a couple times and then forgotten about.
posted by wondermouse at 8:25 PM on December 9, 2016 [17 favorites]


allowing an impeachment to move forward under any conceivable set of circumstances.
I think there are several sets. For starters the big chair is not a part time gig, and appointing Carson to Hud is like appointing me to Sobriety and ChurchGoing. Dereliction and Incompetence.
posted by vrakatar at 8:29 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


but it's not like anyone's saying he won because Russia hacked the votes.

In the first place, we wouldn't know because no one's going to do a manual recount, much less an audit. More votes for Trump than votes cast? Huh. Weird, oh well.

In the second place, they don't have to. Amerikanski are morons who beleive anything the tv tells them to. Hacking votes is risky but cybernetic models of information-sharing in dumbfuck racist swing states never lie.
posted by petebest at 8:32 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


I think impeachment moves forward when Trump becomes an electoral liability to the party. Given the way he's going around pretty explicitly saying that all his campaign promises were bullshit, I can't completely rule that scenario out.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:34 PM on December 9, 2016 [11 favorites]


You're assuming a) fair elections; b) elections. Those feel like over-assumptions.
posted by holgate at 8:36 PM on December 9, 2016 [21 favorites]


I think there are several sets. For starters the big chair is not a part time gig, and appointing Carson to Hud is like appointing me to Sobriety and ChurchGoing. Dereliction and Incompetence.

I completely disagree that those are things that Republicans care about. At all. Even remotely. Carson will be confirmed. Most of these cabinet picks will all be confirmed, Dems will be overperforming to stop any of them.

They need Trump to sign their tax cuts. That is all. They'd be perfectly happy for HUD to be run into the ground, or better yet, eliminated entirely.

85% of Republicans think they were elected to eliminate as many functions of the federal government as they can possibly eliminate. Incompetence is perfectly in line with their goals, and they've proven over and over again they're not going to care about Trump's corruption.
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:38 PM on December 9, 2016 [25 favorites]


Back to the NY Times FBI-sourced story from 11/1 (only a month ago?!?!) disputing the Mother Jones claims about Russian interference: Adam Jentleson, who is Harry Reid's Deputy Chief of Staff, just tweeted: "I'll say it: NYT interviewed Reid for this story. He said things contrary to the story. NYT discarded the interview."
posted by sallybrown at 8:38 PM on December 9, 2016 [52 favorites]


I don't think impeachment is necessarily likely, but Trump isn't a normal Republican and that opens lots of doors which would otherwise be tightly shut. I don't know what it'd take, and it's almost definitely well beyond whatever standards I'd like to see, but there is a line somewhere beyond which his damage to the GOP's electoral brand outweighs default party loyalty and a true believer can step up to point out that hey, Trump's actually pretty liberal... and at that point they're pretty much clear to refocus the rhetoric on "thank god for real conservatives like Mike Pence" while Fox News switches into full blown Trump (D) mode and Ivanka struggles to spin a resignation as preferable to an impeachment conviction.
posted by feloniousmonk at 8:39 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


If Sens. Graham, McCain and Burr genuinely believe that "they did interfere with our elections", then let them put country before party and say openly that they will not caucus with a party whose leader's election has been compromised by foreign and possibly hostile powers.

A "congressional probe" is something you do to produce some gotcha material to take down a minor Cabinet secretary, not to address something of this urgency. What do they think will happen to the report that comes out of their little inquest on some Friday next August?

If they don't actually act in a way that's appropriate to the threat they're claiming, their shuffling uncomfortably in the WaPo is about as meaningful as a Glenn Beck pie chart.
posted by tivalasvegas at 8:44 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


Just found this on https://www.archives.gov/federal-register/electoral-college/key-dates.html:

December 19, 2016

The Electors meet in their state and vote for President and Vice President on separate ballots. The electors record their votes on six “Certificates of Vote,” which are paired with the six remaining Certificates of Ascertainment.


December 19th.
posted by bunbury at 8:45 PM on December 9, 2016


next up: cyber-terrorism!
posted by fingers_of_fire at 8:45 PM on December 9, 2016


idk if I were a congressional Republican I'd be thinking we could throw Ryan, McConnell and Trump to the wolves, be the people that put America over party and bask in all that cred, still have Pence rubber stamp everything we want so we can have our cake and eat it too, and look to rebrand with the 2012 RNC post mortem in mind and a combo of new RNC leadership and a new American distrust of every extreme right school of thought you can tie to Trump helping ward off Tea Party style primary challenges from the right.

I don't believe for a second they'll do that, but holy shit the opportunity is there for the taking. Look at Kansas, you can run more moderate Republicans once the people sour on the Brownbacks of the world and they'll seem like a breath of fresh air to the voters even though you'd think the R by the name would be a liability. Everyone who believed the false equivalence "oh they both ran such nasty campaigns" narratives this election will be loving a platform of moderate stability.
posted by jason_steakums at 8:46 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


The electors record their votes on six “Certificates of Vote,” which are paired with the six remaining Certificates of Ascertainment.

Are they electing a President or playing The Cones of Dunshire?
posted by zachlipton at 8:46 PM on December 9, 2016 [43 favorites]


I've been away from the computer for a while. Just to be clear, this is where we're at?

Trump Transition Team:
Russia, run by a dictator who was a KGB agent for 16 years, tried to influence our election - preposterous!
PizzaGate - TOTALLY BELIEVABLE

cool, cool, cool. totally cool.
posted by bluecore at 8:47 PM on December 9, 2016 [48 favorites]


then let them put country before party

That's a good one.
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:48 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


Dereliction and Incompetence.

Like ginning up a fake WMD reason to invade a country with no ties to 9/11 that cost trillions and blood, initiating taxpayer-funded torture and ubiquitous illegal surveillance while vacationing into the biggest financial meltdown since the widespread use of the light bulb? Like that level of Dereliction and Incompetence?

HUD. I wish! Nah, if some person(s) don't do the terrible then hello four years of Turdfungus because they ain't gonna impeach nobody. The GOP are ecocidal goons hell bent on locking up a woman's body stripping the 99% of wealth and rigging all laws against notthem. Watch.
posted by petebest at 8:48 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


Impeachment? I am beginning to question whether he'll make it past the electoral college vote. Do we have a list of the so-called "faithless," yet faithful, electors?
posted by standardasparagus at 8:48 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Yes, one guy. That's a bit shy of what would be needed.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:51 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


Either the electors will flip and we'll get Kasich/Kaine

Under what possible scenario would Kaine get on the ticket?
posted by Justinian at 8:57 PM on December 9, 2016


Lawrence Lessig has started the Electors Trust, "which will provide free legal advice to wavering electors. Lessig, like Suprun, has no idea if an Electoral College revolt could actually happen, but thinks that given the danger Trump poses to democratic norms and his decisive popular vote defeat, it’s worth a try. " Perhaps there will be more. Not quite business as usual.
posted by standardasparagus at 8:57 PM on December 9, 2016 [13 favorites]


Impeachment would be meaningless as a response to Russian interference- any outcome ending with the GOP in control of the Presidency is a validation of Russian work.
posted by Pope Guilty at 8:58 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


IIRC the electors are typically die hard party faithfuls so I don't see them breaking away from Trump.

I do absolutely think that the electors should be cleared to see all the intel reports on Russian election interference though. They likely won't change their votes but they should at least know very clearly what they're voting for.
posted by jason_steakums at 8:58 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


Under what possible scenario would Kaine get on the ticket?

By being a VP candidate. If Trump fails to get to 270 Electoral votes it goes to Congress. House decides president between Kasich (or whoever), Trump, and Clinton. Senate chooses between Kaine and Pence.
posted by asteria at 9:01 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Are they electing a President or playing The Cones of Dunshire?

What? Cones of Dunshire is about the cones. Never forget that.
posted by Talez at 9:01 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


[A few comments deleted. Let's keep it cool in here please.]
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 9:02 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


"Fact: Trump has criticized FBI and CIA way more than he's criticized InfoWars on veracity of intel."

It's astonishing that the transition team's statement isn't even remotely accurate about the electoral college vote count, in a statement that's supposed to be about accuracy in intelligence reports.

The Dallas Morning News had this story the other day too: Russia ties complicate Exxon CEO Rex Tillerson's prospects for secretary of state gig
posted by zachlipton at 9:04 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


I don't think they'll impeach without very very serious public backlash against Trump among their own base but the Republicans are masterful at pretending their own bad decisions didn't happen and don't matter even if they did, and their base and a ton of undecideds going "we're actually fine with that answer, these guys sound like straight shooters" so fuck if I know, they could impeach him day one and say it was Hillary's fault somehow and be rewarded for it among Trump voters and I wouldn't even be surprised.
posted by jason_steakums at 9:12 PM on December 9, 2016 [12 favorites]


They could make Putin literally Secretary of State and 24.6% of America will be okiefuckindokie. Dems would make a show of resistance of course, but would ultimately trade confirmation for the choice parking behind Dunkin' Doughnuts.
posted by petebest at 9:15 PM on December 9, 2016 [31 favorites]


>then let them put country before party

That's a good one.


It was a recommendation more than a prediction. Oh, add Sen. Sasse to the list, too, and Sen. Snowe.

There is, though rapidly closing, a window yet for conservatives to carve out an anti-Trump bloc on the center-right. Ball's in their court.
posted by tivalasvegas at 9:17 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


The electors record their votes on six “Certificates of Vote,” which are paired with the six remaining Certificates of Ascertainment.

So this led me to look at WTF a Certificate of Ascertainment looks like, and I found California's from 2012. This document brings up a very important question. Write-In Candidate Sheila "Samm" Tittle received a grand total of six votes from California in 2012, but is listed on the Certificate with a full slate of pledged electors. Who are all these people who pledged to be her electors in the Electoral College yet didn't even vote for her in the general? I want an investigation into this.
posted by zachlipton at 9:17 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


Chrysostom: "Yes, one guy. That's a bit shy of what would be needed."

Yep. You'd need at least 38 Republican electors -- die-hard party-faithful types appointed to reward their slavish loyalty -- to vote for Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. That's almost a fifth of his electoral vote haul.

Alternatively, you'd need at least one to vote for a dark horse conservative candidate, and 37 others to vote for that candidate (or Clinton) over Trump. Then nobody would have a majority, and it would get kicked to the incoming House, where you'd need a majority of state delegations to vote for the third option (or Clinton) over Trump. Recall that Republicans will control 32 delegations and only need 26 to elect the next president. You'd need all 18 Democratic delegations plus eight Republican ones to back Clinton or the dark horse to stop Trump.
posted by Rhaomi at 9:22 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


Given that the CIA, the FBI, the US Congress and even the fucking White House managed to engender this catastrophe, out of a mistaken collective belief that we'd all get through this and breathe a long sigh... institutions will not save you. Do not even hope for institutions to save you.
posted by holgate at 9:26 PM on December 9, 2016 [50 favorites]


By being a VP candidate. If Trump fails to get to 270 Electoral votes it goes to Congress. House decides president between Kasich (or whoever), Trump, and Clinton. Senate chooses between Kaine and Pence.

... right, and they'd pick Pence. Under what plausible scenario would they pick Kaine?
posted by Justinian at 9:29 PM on December 9, 2016


October 7, 2016, Joint Statement from the Department of Homeland Security and Office of the Director of National Intelligence on Election Security:
The U.S. Intelligence Community (USIC) is confident that the Russian Government directed the recent compromises of e-mails from US persons and institutions, including from US political organizations. The recent disclosures of alleged hacked e-mails on sites like DCLeaks.com and WikiLeaks and by the Guccifer 2.0 online persona are consistent with the methods and motivations of Russian-directed efforts. These thefts and disclosures are intended to interfere with the US election process. Such activity is not new to Moscow—the Russians have used similar tactics and techniques across Europe and Eurasia, for example, to influence public opinion there. We believe, based on the scope and sensitivity of these efforts, that only Russia's senior-most officials could have authorized these activities.
posted by kirkaracha at 9:30 PM on December 9, 2016 [16 favorites]


... right, and they'd pick Pence. Under what plausible scenario would they pick Kaine?

States get one vote and they need Dem cooperation to get someone chosen before January 20th.
posted by asteria at 9:31 PM on December 9, 2016


Yep; they issued that statement and then Trump opened his mouth and said something outrageous and everyone moved on within a day or two.
posted by zachlipton at 9:32 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


States get one vote and they need Dem cooperation to get someone chosen before January 20th.

States get one vote in the House not the Senate. AFAIK it's simple majority vote in the Senate.
posted by Justinian at 9:35 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Yep; they issued that statement and then Trump opened his mouth and said something outrageous and everyone moved on within a day or two.

That was like the same day as the Billy Bush video
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 9:36 PM on December 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


> ... right, and they'd pick Pence. Under what plausible scenario would they pick Kaine?

States get one vote and they need Dem cooperation to get someone chosen before January 20th.


I think it's assuming a deal is made: Dems in the House agree to support Kasich in exchange for a handful of GOP Senators breaking for Kaine. Then Kasich and Kaine have a very awkward four years.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 9:39 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Gotcha. Also we could wish for a flying telepathic pony.
posted by Justinian at 9:40 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


That was like the same day as the Billy Bush video

Good catch, so it was. That'd do it. Unless of course our news media were tough and relentless in pursuing these important stories.

Pussygate was fun too, I guess. In a way.
posted by petebest at 9:41 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


If no candidate receives a majority of Electoral votes, the House of Representatives elects the President from the 3 Presidential candidates who received the most Electoral votes. Each state delegation has one vote. The Senate would elect the Vice President from the 2 Vice Presidential candidates with the most Electoral votes. Each Senator would cast one vote for Vice President.

Guess so.

Then Dems could argue Pence was complicit in this mess and needs to be booted too.

I might wish for some people to switch to decaf.
posted by asteria at 9:41 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Note that this story breaks late on a Friday night.

Gone by Monday.
posted by standardasparagus at 9:42 PM on December 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Haven't said this in a while, but... America sucks more every day.
posted by quarter waters and a bag of chips at 9:42 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


Note that this story breaks late on a Friday night.

Gone by Monday.


What story?
posted by 922257033c4a0f3cecdbd819a46d626999d1af4a at 9:43 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


And here's a response from Sean Spicer, RNC Communications Director (and liar):
Don't miss tomorrow's @SangerNYT exclusive interview with Elvis riding his unicorn on a rainbow with Santa
Charming.
posted by zachlipton at 9:44 PM on December 9, 2016


Gotcha. Also we could wish for a flying telepathic pony.

If the last two weeks of 2016 involve a flying pony who tells everyone everyone else's secrets, it will be your fault! Don't give 2016 ideas!
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 9:45 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


i'm calling it now: emergency powers on or before 9/30/17. no midterm election in '18.

any takers?
posted by j_curiouser at 9:46 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


I'd wager basically everything I own against that proposition.
posted by Justinian at 9:47 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


What story?

The one you've just been playing! *konk* The one you're carrying inside your rusty innards!
posted by petebest at 9:47 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


The weirdest thing about this Russian hacking issue to me is that I can't shake the feeling that most people just... don't care.

I mentioned something about this briefly in the run up to the election, and what I was seeing was a lot of people on the left not wanting to believe it, largely by suggesting it was all some throwback to the cold war that was being brought up for political ends. The mentions seemed to be pointed towards not wishing for any renewed confrontational stance against Russia and relied on Clinton reputation as a "hawk" as justification for doubt. Even now, I notice some of my more left friends preferring to explicitly point to the electorate for believing anything Trump said as being more important than any Russian connection. It seems clearly to be something a lot of people don't want to think about given what the consequences could potentially be.

Those who were leaning Trump at the time also called it political but went more with it being a partisan trickery thing like the Republicans have done before, while justifying Trump's many favorable remarks about Putin by agreement with the stance, particularly when Putin was compared to Obama. Given how many Trump supporters don't believe Obama is a real American, that hardly surprised. Republican lawmakers were much more reserved during the election, so I don't think they were complicit or had any plan around this, other than McConnell and Ryan perhaps. They seem more to be playing it by ear than following a score at this point, so if things get serious and more damning info comes out, I wouldn't be entirely surprised to see them dump McConnell, at the least, if they thought they could make a good showing and still run things.

If it somehow went to the house and they had a shot at getting Kasich as president, I think they might take it and dump the McConnell and Trump and go for a clean slate rule that would still give them plenty of chances to enact favorable legislation, especially if they could make the deal to dump Trump to seem contingent on some Democratic support for some initiatives of theirs, or at least give them some cover for making the move. The reaction from Trump hardcore supporters would be fierce though so that would definitely give some Republicans pause in states that went hard for Trump, so a lot would depend on how reliable the info seemed and if it was listened to and at least believed enough to calm some of the herd that might stampede in a defection to Kasich.

That said, I still doubt it'll get that far, but, really, after everything else that's happened this year, who knows?
posted by gusottertrout at 9:52 PM on December 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


Twitter to NY Times:

They based that conclusion, in part, on another finding — which they say was also reached with high confidence — that the Russians hacked the Republican National Committee’s computer systems in addition to their attacks on Democratic organizations, but did not release whatever information they gleaned from the Republican networks.

I assumed GOP IT wasn't running circles around Dems'. Nice to have it confirmed, I guess.
posted by bunbury at 9:53 PM on December 9, 2016 [8 favorites]


I'm with Justinian: the extent to which the deplorables will embrace -- have already embraced -- the idea that Putin saved the republic from Hillary carries its own weight and momentum, and there'll be no need for special powers: the several states under GOP control will decide how elections will be carried out.
posted by holgate at 9:57 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


>> i'm calling it now: emergency powers on or before 9/30/17. no midterm election in '18.
>> any takers?

> I'd wager basically everything I own against that proposition.

And if j_curiouser is right, at that point, what do you have to lose?
posted by bunbury at 10:01 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


Heh. That was part of my thinking. I'm certain it won't happen but if it did what do I care if I wagered my stuff?
posted by Justinian at 10:02 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


At this point I have to imagine pretty much every intelligence service in the world will be tripping over each other trying to find and monitor any possible Trump>Russia communication channels all weekend.
posted by jason_steakums at 10:03 PM on December 9, 2016


2018 is already a built in Republican landslide. There's no manipulation needed there. By 2020 America will be unrecognizable, and fair elections a long shot.
posted by T.D. Strange at 10:10 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


The weirdest thing about this Russian hacking issue to me is that I can't shake the feeling that most people just... don't care.

Y'know, the only things stopping the American people (to quote eddie pepitone) are: genetics, lack of will, income, brain chemistry and external events.

Man, why do I have to keep being ashamed of being an American?

I get why people get bummed out by talking about the Kennedy assassination. Or Nixon prolonging the Vietnam war. Or Reagan torpedoing Carter's rescue attempt and trading weapons for hostages.
It's treason, but it's old treason.

This...well, shit, it's happening right now. It's not f'ing reality T.V. it's OUR LIVES.

I got a strong sense of irony and a sawed off Mosin Nagant right here pal. Want a demonstration?
Anyone?
Anyone?
No?

So when do we get the horse named as senator?

TMZ: Incitatus caught on a sex tape - find out with who!"

emergency powers on or before 9/30/17
I'm fine with Obama playing Augustus.
(Weird how we skipped Tiberius tho)

Anyone gonna fault me for just going for money? I'm tired of the "we're in this together" crap. Maybe the Carthaginians...er, Russians, are hiring.

Seriously, you think P.K. Dick was a brilliant writer but nuts when he says the Roman Empire never ended, but... damn.

"To fight the Empire is to be infected by its derangement. This is a paradox; whoever defeats a segment of the Empire becomes the Empire; it proliferates like a virus, imposing its form on its enemies. Thereby it becomes its enemies." - Philip K. Dick

The more things change....
posted by Smedleyman at 10:11 PM on December 9, 2016 [12 favorites]


What's it called when you make a deal with the devil, but you don't get power and riches but just get to be a lickspittle for Millionaire Sex Predator Donald Trump
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 10:12 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


What's it called when you make a deal with the devil, but you don't get power and riches but just get to be a lickspittle for Millionaire Sex Predator Donald Trump

The Christie Crawl
posted by jason_steakums at 10:15 PM on December 9, 2016 [33 favorites]


On my commute home I suddenly remembered a conversation I'd had the day before with my friends, the parents of a young toddler, about how Trump's administration was canceling funding to public television, and by extension, Sesame Street. "Yeah, it had a good run, but we all knew this was coming," they said. Me: "Damn. I remember hearing about their HBO deal, but I guess that was just a stopgap - that's horrible!" And then I paused, and truly could not remember if the conversation, and by extension, the forthcoming end of Sesame Street, had been a dream or not, because the rest of the (dream!, I eventually realized, after another mile down the road) conversation had just been us grimly joking that honestly, maybe there wasn't much sense in teaching preschoolers to manage their emotions and be kind to each other and share in the future, anyway.

OT1H, I'm relieved to realize this was [fake], but scared I thought it was plausible enough to be [real] for a good 20 minutes.
posted by deludingmyself at 10:18 PM on December 9, 2016 [10 favorites]


i'm calling it now: emergency powers on or before 9/30/17. no midterm election in '18.

I'd take that action.

As long as Trump can hold it together personally to the extent the has so far, the most likely outcome is a winning fraction of the electorate thinks the most of the next four years have been terrific for them. There will be more focused oppression than that, and other more terrible consequences later, but not until after he's left office.

It's not going to be that hard for him to get the adulation he craves in the short term:
  • print money, use it to provide millions of jobs
  • sign the tax cuts
  • refuse to sign the medicare/ssi/etc. cuts
  • sign the regulatory rollbacks
  • terrify the rest of the world by throwing the US military around.
posted by Coventry at 10:49 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


Putin won fair and square. We have to give him a chance…
posted by mazola at 10:52 PM on December 9, 2016 [23 favorites]


I'm with Justinian: the extent to which the deplorables will embrace -- have already embraced -- the idea that Putin saved the republic from Hillary carries its own weight and momentum, and there'll be no need for special powers: the several states under GOP control will decide how elections will be carried out.

I wish I could disagree with this. But:
posted by rp at 10:52 PM on December 9, 2016


. It is increasingly true, that despite what Slavoj Zizek and other leftists say--and have been saying for-fucking-ever--that there is a revolutionary silver lining to this cloud...that this is not the case.

Anyone heard from Susan Sarandon lately?
posted by great_radio at 10:59 PM on December 9, 2016 [5 favorites]


The evidence is really piling up that this election was completely illegitimate. Forget the fact that Trump lost the popular vote by a huge amount that makes it very clear that Americans do not want a Republican president; it is now obvious that Trump didn't actually win the electoral college vote either. The Republican party's desperate attempts to stop the recounts, especially in light of the fact that recount efforts have already uncovered massive amounts of fraud (ballot boxes containing far fewer ballots than they are recorded to contain, etc.), have made it clear that they have no interest in democracy of any kind, even the rigged game that we already thought they were playing. We need recounts in every single county in this country now, because I'd put good money on the fact that we're going to find out that this isn't something that just occurred in a couple of places in a couple of states. The Republicans have done away with democracy entirely.

THERE WAS NO ELECTION. That has to be the takeaway here. That is the thing the news outlets and frankly everybody else should be screaming. THERE WAS NO ELECTION. A LOT OF THE TRUMP VOTES DO NOT ACTUALLY EXIST. THIS OUTCOME IS FRAUDULENT. THIS IS A COUP.

THIS IS A COUP.
posted by IAmUnaware at 11:17 PM on December 9, 2016 [40 favorites]


Let's Not Pretend We Didn't Know This

Look, I think Josh Marshall does good work, but in general I am not down with the whole "xyz film at 11" trope. If something that should gotten people's attention months ago is finally getting attention, then let it get attention.
posted by great_radio at 11:20 PM on December 9, 2016 [9 favorites]


Oh, and it's undoubtedly true of the Senate races too. Do you think the Republican party would figure out a workable way of rigging elections and just use it the one time?

None of the results in the 2016 election can be taken as legitimate. None of these people were actually provably elected.
posted by IAmUnaware at 11:21 PM on December 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Have another election. Maybe let Canada oversee it…
posted by mazola at 11:24 PM on December 9, 2016 [3 favorites]


Kellyanne Conway alarmingly advocates “consequences” for criticizing Trump

In yet another extraordinary pronouncement which has gone virtually unnoticed, senior adviser Kellyanne Conway lamented the fact that people like labor leader Chuck Jones think they can criticize President-elect Donald Trump without suffering consequences.

Yes, she actually said “consequences:”

"People feel like with Donald Trump, they have license to say whatever the heck they want about this guy, with no consequences, with no blowback. The guy has a right to defend himself. And he rarely draws first blood. It’s when he is attacked, he likes to set the record straight."

Those words are chilling enough on their own. But it is remarkable that this sentiment is coming not from Trump, a political novice with a hair-trigger, but rather from an experienced political pro. This is messaging.

And it is messaging that works to conceal the profound power differential between a president-elect and the average citizen.

Later in the interview, Conway also complained about criticisms like those made by the Clinton campaign’s Jen Palmieri:

"Anytime I try to respond, I’m seen as ungracious. Why are we sore winners? I’m not a sore winner, I’m a winner. My guy’s a winner. He’s the next president of the United States. This has to stop, Chris, this incendiary rhetoric of people who just can’t admit that they lost. It has to stop, because it’s costing a lot of angst."


Article has video of the interview.
posted by futz at 11:24 PM on December 9, 2016 [30 favorites]


"Anytime I try to respond, I’m seen as ungracious. Why are we sore winners? I’m not a sore winner, I’m a winner. My guy’s a winner. He’s the next president of the United States. This has to stop, Chris, this incendiary rhetoric of people who just can’t admit that they lost. It has to stop, because it’s costing a lot of angst."

"Look, when Republicans lost the White House eight years ago, all we did was suggest that the President was not an American but was DEFINITELY a Muslim, hit 'forward' on every racist email chain letter about him that crossed our inbox, hold 60 futile votes to take away health care from 22 million Americans, and refuse to do any work for 6 years. And now we're supposed to just move on when a steel worker in Ohio makes a factually correct criticism of the President-elect? I mean that is practically censorship and I, personally, am offended." [fake]
posted by Snarl Furillo at 11:41 PM on December 9, 2016 [70 favorites]


"Anytime I try to respond, I’m seen as ungracious. Why are we sore winners? I’m not a sore winner, I’m a winner. My guy’s a winner. He’s the next president of the United States. This has to stop, Chris, this incendiary rhetoric of people who just can’t admit that they lost. It has to stop, because it’s costing a lot of angst."

So, I heard someone say that Donald Trump was actually born in Kenya. People are talking about it. If it's not true, why hasn't he presented his extra-long-form birth certificate?
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 11:44 PM on December 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


For me the interesting thing is that the CIA is leaking bigly to damage Trump. If we have any hope of containing/getting rid of him, the deep state is probably the best bet. Nixon was taken down by a career FBI associate director who hated him. It may very well be the same for Trump.
posted by chris24 at 11:45 PM on December 9, 2016 [33 favorites]


how tight is the ecuadorian government with russia anyway? any chance that assange will become so publically toxic that they'll boot his ass out of the embassy?
posted by murphy slaw at 12:04 AM on December 10, 2016


What's it called when you make a deal with the devil, but you don't get power and riches but just get to be a lickspittle for Millionaire Sex Predator Donald Trump

Tuesday.
posted by Archelaus at 12:04 AM on December 10, 2016 [16 favorites]


And it is messaging that works to conceal the profound power differential between a president-elect and the average citizen.

For me, that was the most striking thing about Trump's beef with McMullin. Not that he had one, thin-skinned as he is, that was no surprise, but that Trump's big knock on McMullin was that he is an "unkown person", meaning not famous, not worthy of recognition, not a big deal like him and his cronies. That Trump views people that way too isn't really surprising as such, but it is no less chilling for being so perfectly fitting for him. That's how Trump views everyone not on TV or worth a billion dollars, unknown, vague, barely real. You aren't going to lose much sleep destroying the lives of those who aren't even real people to you, heck you won't even know it happened given how "unknown" all of us are to guys like Trump.
posted by gusottertrout at 12:31 AM on December 10, 2016 [34 favorites]


THERE WAS NO ELECTION. A LOT OF THE TRUMP VOTES DO NOT ACTUALLY EXIST. THIS OUTCOME IS FRAUDULENT. THIS IS A COUP.

I don't think so, at least not in the way you mean, and I think taking this tack will just discredit the anti-Trump movement. Russia helped elect Trump. The FBI leaked like a sieve to help elect Trump. The Republicans did everything in their power to suppress the vote in racially motivated ways. Taking all of that together one could reasonably make the case for a de facto if not a de jure coup.

But what I don't think happened was the sort of voter fraud you claim. I mean, even the Trump folks and the RNC didn't think Trump would win (until he did). I don't think that was a show put on to cover cheating. I think they really, truly thought Clinton was going to win.

The Trump camp opposes the recounts not because they think it would uncover massive cheating but because they oppose everything "the other side" supports reflexively. If the blue side wants it they oppose it.
posted by Justinian at 12:38 AM on December 10, 2016 [46 favorites]


For me the interesting thing is that the CIA is leaking bigly to damage Trump. If we have any hope of containing/getting rid of him, the deep state is probably the best bet.

Sure, the CIA has around seven decades' experience of interfering in elections and democracy. Not, however, in the interests of the people.
posted by Coda Tronca at 1:51 AM on December 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


Sure, the CIA has around seven decades' experience of interfering in elections and democracy. Not, however, in the interests of the people.

I guess it was bound to happen. You invent a better mousetrap and sooner or later you're going to get your own mouse trapped. Or something, I dunno I'm not too good with idioms.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 2:53 AM on December 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


I just woke up after an 11-month coma. Hey, folks, anything happen?
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 4:18 AM on December 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


A post about the CIA saying that Russia intervened to help Trump win the US election is live. Thanks, Sleeper.

Wait, Sleeper? Eponysterical?
posted by Wordshore at 4:23 AM on December 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


Remember when Trump instructed Russia to hack Clinton right I front of us all: “I will tell you this, Russia: If you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,” the Republican nominee said at a news conference in Florida. “I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press.”
posted by madamjujujive at 4:51 AM on December 10, 2016 [37 favorites]


[Obama] knew of Comey's machinations and did nothing. And did nothing in response when it proved decisive.

Among all the craziness since the election, this fact continues to baffle me. Obama should fire Comey immediately. What possible advantage is there to him not doing so, or price he'd pay that makes such an action undesirable? Obama has the power to signal that interfering in an election is unacceptable, and I can't understand why he tacitly condones Comey's actions.
posted by Gelatin at 5:15 AM on December 10, 2016 [9 favorites]


[Obama] knew of Comey's machinations

Comey knew about the Russia thing, knew it was not being revealed so as to not influence the election, and then still decided to go influence the election. Didn't know it was possible to wish more ill on him, but 2016.
posted by chris24 at 5:27 AM on December 10, 2016 [33 favorites]


"Arise, Sleeper, wake from the dead and let the light shine upon you."
posted by EarBucket at 5:27 AM on December 10, 2016


In the real world, it was Conway who said he'd be doing it in his spare time and and that it was no different than Obama golfing. Rediculous!

@realDonaldTrump:
Reports by @CNN that I will be working on The Apprentice during my Presidency, even part time, are rediculous & untrue - FAKE NEWS!
posted by chris24 at 5:39 AM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


May I draw your attention to The PE is Corrupt AF?
posted by MonkeyToes at 6:05 AM on December 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


Rediculous is a Russia/USSR reference, right?
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 6:23 AM on December 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


I was thinking it was some sort of diphallism.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 6:29 AM on December 10, 2016


Reference to Trump misspelling it in his tweet, but I like your reason better.
posted by chris24 at 6:29 AM on December 10, 2016


chris24, my thought was that Trump was making the red reference. But that would actually be clever.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 6:35 AM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


I told you, we're going to keep reliving 2016 until we get it right.

Well that will probably end up with all of us dead then, given the other thing 2016 is notable for.
posted by Bringer Tom at 6:36 AM on December 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


There are certain things that [politically metaphorical] strict fathers cannot be: A Loser, Corrupt, and especially not a Betrayer of Trust.

He's a loser because he lost the popular vote.
He's corrupt because he won't divest and oh yeah is a puppet to Putin.
He's a betrayer of trust because he won't fulfill any of his promises.

If mainstream news was not a roiling hellpit of incompetent preening twits we might dare hope they pick up any one of those sticks and beat about the bush with it.

They won't, because they're managed by the same narcissistic evil that created Turdfungus, but there's at least instructions on how to defuck ourselves if any 'big six' media cared to try for any reason.
posted by petebest at 6:36 AM on December 10, 2016 [18 favorites]


chris24, my thought was that Trump was making the red reference. But that would actually be clever.

Ha. Yeah I didn't even consider Trump being the clever one.
posted by chris24 at 6:45 AM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


There are certain things that [politically metaphorical] strict fathers cannot be: A Loser, Corrupt, and especially not a Betrayer of Trust.

That works two ways: strictness can make it impossible to see someone as one of these things even with all the evidence in place. Which is why autocrats love “traditional values” and war/survival narratives. (See also: massively corrupt Putin, former election loser Erdoğan, and any third-world kleptocrat who makes war against “foreign influences” and “moral decadence” a smokescreen away from their depredations)
posted by acb at 6:49 AM on December 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


Rediculous is a Russia/USSR reference, right?

oh my god, you kremlinologists.

no, it's a common misspelling of "ridiculous".
posted by indubitable at 6:50 AM on December 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


From "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall" to "Mr. Putin, help me win this election" is a helluva final act for the party of Reagan.
posted by chris24 at 6:51 AM on December 10, 2016 [44 favorites]


Egg calling out the craven treason of the Republican Party.

@Evan_McMullin
It's deeply saddening to me that only now are we accepting what has been self-evident for months.

Our nation has been the target of hostile Russian intelligence efforts for decades. That's nothing new.

What's new is that our leaders have become so self-serving that they're willing to sacrifice our national security for their own power.

Republican leaders knew Russia was undermining our democracy during the election and they chose to ignore it.

Their willingness to put party before country & power before principle has resulted in one of the worst compromises of US security ever.

We the people must now seek out and promote into office principled leaders who will put the interests of the country ahead of their own!
posted by chris24 at 7:20 AM on December 10, 2016 [73 favorites]


This morning DJT tweeted A very interesting read. Unfortunately, so much is true. and linked to the Washington Post. Nope, not the story about the Russian interference with the election, but the story about the waste in the Pentagon that was covered up. Very odd that he would choose to congratulate the paper on the morning after an article is published that lends suspicion to his election.

About the Russian interference, nothing will happen until the Republicans get outraged. Right now Democrats are outraged by everything about Trump; his corruption, his cronyism, his apparent lack of interest in undertaking the full time job of being President, so there is a whole lot of noise and now we have to add his unseen and unknowable connections to Putin. Because of partisanship this all fits under the umbrella of being anti-Trump. I used to think that the sadness of this election was discovering how much of the country turned out to be racist, sexiest, xenophobes but now I'm feeling that the deepest cut is realizing how quickly the Republican leaders were willing to sell their country for a bag of silver.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:22 AM on December 10, 2016 [17 favorites]


The 18 year old Muslim woman who was harassed on the subway last week has been missing for two days. :(
posted by melissasaurus at 8:57 PM

Muslim girl who was harassed on subway has been found: police No details other than the police said "she has been found."
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:32 AM on December 10, 2016 [17 favorites]


That works two ways: strictness can make it impossible to see someone as one of these things even with all the evidence in place.

Nothing's impossible when it's subjected to the grinding wheels of all shows and all papers. They put Turdfungus in the position to win, they can take him out.

They won't of course, because owners and presidents are cowardly millionaires who will have more money, America be damned.

No different than the 60 years before, just writ yuuge.
posted by petebest at 7:35 AM on December 10, 2016


This morning DJT tweeted A very interesting read. Unfortunately, so much is true. and linked to the Washington Post.

Not from Android. So maybe he dictated it or more likely it's a staff tweet.
posted by chris24 at 7:40 AM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


In early 2015 a golden phone rings at Trump Tower:
The woods are lovely, dark and deep
But I have promises to keep
And miles to go before I sleep
And miles to go before I sleep
posted by kirkaracha at 7:41 AM on December 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


@jonathanweisman
At 2.1 percentage points, @HillaryClinton pop vote lead now exceeds Carter's over Ford. Larger than 11 elected presidents, including Trump.
posted by chris24 at 7:56 AM on December 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


I remember the cold war. I cannot wrap my head around republicans choosing Putin over America. This fucking year man. This fucking year.
posted by SecretAgentSockpuppet at 8:01 AM on December 10, 2016 [28 favorites]


what about this: on 12/15 donald has a press conference which will have the same result that everything he does has - he will dominate lots of news cycles and say lots of controversial stuff but ultimately will solidify his hold on power. the electoral college votes on 12/19. so what needs to happen is something even more controversial between 12/15 and 12/19. what is that?

hillary on 12/16 holds a press conference officially announcing that she is going to lobby electors to vote their conscience and that she is replacing tim kaine with a moderate republican (if such a thing exists, and if s/he will agree to it) - maybe even marco rubio (who i realize isn't moderate, but...). maybe susan collins, or olympia snowe. pipe dream, but that's all i got.
posted by fingers_of_fire at 8:07 AM on December 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


At 2.1 percentage points, @HillaryClinton pop vote lead now exceeds Carter's over Ford. Larger than 11 elected presidents, including Trump.

Clinton has a bigger popular vote lead than 11 presidents. Trump has a bigger electoral college lead than only 10 presidents.
posted by chris24 at 8:08 AM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


what about this:

Ah, the Bargaining stage.

I've found alcohol helps with the next part, if that's your thing.
posted by Mooski at 8:28 AM on December 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


What Hillary does before 12/19 is less important than what congressional Democrats do. They need to be getting out in front of every microphone they see between now and then talking about the serious questions this raises, and how they're going to formally object to the recording of every single electoral vote Trump gets:
That's what Democrats should do this year, at a minimum: They should formally challenge Trump electoral votes in every Republican state, citing the Russian hack. They should talk about this in every media forum. They should say that they'll reluctantly accept Trump's presidency if the Electoral College chooses him, but they don't consider this a legitimate election. I don't think that there's much more a minority party in Congress can do.
The chance of this strategy actually changing the minds of electors is minuscule, but Republicans never missed an opportunity to use nothingburger scandals to try to damage Obama and Clinton, so the Democrats should not pass on making political hay out of this actual scandal. If we're going to have to live with Trump -- and we probably are -- we may as well try to wound him politically before he takes office.
posted by tonycpsu at 8:31 AM on December 10, 2016 [44 favorites]


McCain advisor.

@MarkSalter55:
Tillerson would sell out NATO for Sakhalin oil and his pal, Vlad. Should be a rough confirmation hearing, and a no vote on the Senate floor.
posted by chris24 at 8:49 AM on December 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


Harry Reid was on AM Joy this morning suggesting that Lindsey Graham take an active role in an investigation into Russia's involvement. His credibility as a Republican who led the Bill Clinton impeachment proceedings could help with the perception that this is a partisan effort. Of course, when the chips are down, Graham usually rolls over and goes with his party, so I'm not holding my breath. </SurelyThis>
posted by tonycpsu at 8:50 AM on December 10, 2016 [19 favorites]


I remember the cold war. I cannot wrap my head around republicans choosing Putin over America. This fucking year man. This fucking year.

You have to remember that the animating principal of the Republican party is not America.

It's tax cuts for the global rich who happen to be based in America, and dismantling the federal government so that those taxes can never be reinstated. Putin shares the same goals. The only inconsistency here is that they still pretend otherwise while in front of a camera.
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:56 AM on December 10, 2016 [33 favorites]


Of course, when the chips are down, Graham usually rolls over and goes with his party

I dunno, he's been a pretty consistent critic of Trump for about a year now. I have no love for Graham but there's reason to believe that on issues related to the election he might well be a reliable ally.
posted by jackbishop at 9:09 AM on December 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


Well I'm phonebanking for Foster Campbell right now, which is like... LOL? I feel like the situation keeps getting out from under me so that as soon as I decide to do something big and outside my comfort zone, it's like, joke's on you Russia influenced our election and everything is fucked your gesture is futile. But idk what else I'm gonna do right now so, onward.
posted by sunset in snow country at 9:09 AM on December 10, 2016 [23 favorites]


@politicalmiller
Hamilton in Federalist 68:
The Electoral College should stop the “desire in foreign powers to gain an improper ascendant in our councils.”
posted by chris24 at 9:11 AM on December 10, 2016 [35 favorites]


we may as well try to wound him politically before he takes office.

Trump can't be wounded politically because he gives no fucks about the political reality.
posted by Talez at 9:12 AM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


These charts showing what Republican voters believe about the 2016 election are depressing — and telling

Fully 73 percent said that they believe it's at least “probably true” that the media intentionally misled the public about the polls in an effort to hurt Trump; 36 percent say this is definitely true.
posted by futz at 9:20 AM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


Trump can't be wounded politically because he gives no fucks about the political reality.

I give no fucks what Trump or Trumpsters think, I care what the majority of Americans who voted against him, the few sane Republicans, those in danger of oppression, and the rest of the world thinks. Standing up to him and trying to bring him down, make him as toxic as possible with more people is the best way to help prevent maximal damage.

And he can be wounded politically. Khans, Curiel, Machado all did major damage. A minority of Americans voted for him, located conveniently to edge him an EC win, but even among Republicans he's unpopular. We need to do to him what the GOP did to Clinton and Obama, fight to make every thought, word and story about him be about Russia, corruption, racism.
posted by chris24 at 9:23 AM on December 10, 2016 [47 favorites]


2018 is already a built in Republican landslide. There's no manipulation needed there. By 2020 America will be unrecognizable, and fair elections a long shot.

I understand the impulse to talk like this, believe me I do. But it's incredibly harmful. A lot of people use justifications like this to convince themselves that there's no point in fighting. To assuage their guilt at giving up.

I see it kind of like Pascal's Wager. If it's true that we're fucked and our democracy is over well then pouring my energy into fighting it isn't going to make things worse. And if there is a chance for us to fix all of this -- even a small one - then I'm damned well going to try. I think we all have a moral obligation to try.

I, personally, would bet money on a Democratic wave election in 2018. We don't need that many seats in the House at least -- only 24 have to flip parties. Dems won more than that (30) as recently as 2006. Compare this to the largest midterm wave election in US history, in 1894. The Republicans gained 130 seats. With the smaller House then, that's over a third of house seats changing hands - 36%. By comparison, we only need to flip 5.5% of the House in 2018.

This is not over. We have not lost. Anyone who says that we have is just buying into what Trump and Pence want them to believe.
posted by galaxy rise at 9:32 AM on December 10, 2016 [71 favorites]


And he can be wounded politically. Khans, Curiel, Machado all did major damage. A minority of Americans voted for him, located conveniently to edge him an EC win, but even among Republicans he's unpopular. We need to do to him what the GOP did to Clinton and Obama, fight to make every thought, word and story about him be about Russia, corruption, racism.

All that shit happened, he still WON the election, and you think he can be wounded politically? No offense but when the guy can do all the shit he did and remain a winning candidate he might as well be made of titanium.

America has become so partisan that it's not about the candidate anymore. It's about your tribe. It's absolutely heartbreaking to watch democracy denigrate into a year long football game. 1964 the voters stopped Goldwater. This time they went full steam ahead with him.
posted by Talez at 9:33 AM on December 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


only 24 have to flip parties

The problem is that there's only 20-something competitive districts and Democrats already control 8. Without a massive swing to the Democrats (I think D+6 was about the time it started to flip) we're not going to see the house come back. 2012 was D+1 and ended up down by 33.
posted by Talez at 9:38 AM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


All that shit happened, he still WON the election, and you think he can be wounded politically? No offense but when the guy can do all the shit he did and remain a winning candidate he might as well be made of titanium.

He lost the popular vote by 2.1% and 2.8 million votes. And that's with the FBI and Russia working for him, misogyny, etc. Squeaking an EC win doesn't make him invincible. And acting like he is just leads to people giving up and not trying. Which leads to worse outcomes for those at risk. Yes, the electorate is sadly extremely partisan but he's a minority president and we need to be an opposition party and fight back for our ideals, our country and the endangered.
posted by chris24 at 9:42 AM on December 10, 2016 [50 favorites]


Without a massive swing to the Democrats (I think D+6 was about the time it started to flip) we're not going to see the house come back.

Yeah, I agree that we need a massive swing -- a realignment. But I think that's possible, with enough change at the party leadership level and a lot of good candidates in previously uncompetitive districts.
posted by galaxy rise at 9:43 AM on December 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


He lost the popular vote by 2.1% and 2.8 million votes.

This is a comforting story, but all those votes were in California and New York. To retake the House, we need those 2.8 million people to move to the midwest, and a magic unicorn to undo gerrymandering.
posted by T.D. Strange at 9:45 AM on December 10, 2016 [3 favorites]




This is a comforting story, but all those votes were in California and New York. To retake the House, we need those 2.8 million people to move to the midwest, and a magic unicorn to undo gerrymandering.

First, in 2017 we need to win the NJ and VA governor races and try to win enough seats in the special election of the ungerrymandered NC legislature to sustain Cooper's vetoes. All very possible.

Then yes, we need to do better in 2018. Which is a tough fight in the House and Senate, but a great opportunity for Dems in the governor races. 36 races will be up for election and many will be in states were Republicans will be running in states Obama or Clinton won. Plus with term limits, Republicans will be defending 14 empty seats.
posted by chris24 at 9:52 AM on December 10, 2016 [22 favorites]


I understand the impulse to talk like this, believe me I do. But it's incredibly harmful. A lot of people use justifications like this to convince themselves that there's no point in fighting. To assuage their guilt at giving up. [...] This is not over. We have not lost. Anyone who says that we have is just buying into what Trump and Pence want them to believe.

I feel similarly about some of the catastrophizing on the left. I mean, sure, a future may come to pass where we all get rounded up and loaded onto rockets and shot into the sun (or, y'know, a lower-hyperbole version of the same). But there are meaningful things we can focus our energy on instead, like elections in 2017 and 2018, prodding our Congresspeople, and an awful lot of low level boring stuff like person-to-person interactions that only have an effect in cumulative form over time.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 10:02 AM on December 10, 2016 [8 favorites]


Andrea Mitchell on MSNBC just now reporting that her contacts in the transition team say Rex Tillerson will be nominated as SoS.
posted by XMLicious at 10:04 AM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


All that shit happened, he still WON the election, and you think he can be wounded politically? No offense but when the guy can do all the shit he did and remain a winning candidate he might as well be made of titanium.

A big part of his appeal was that he had never been a politician before, that he didn't have a 30-year record of political baggage. Now he HAS to be a politician. It's like that line from Joe Versus the Volcano: "I know he can GET the job, but can he DO the job?" "But I've never been a politician before" is only a titanium force-field riiiiiiiight up to the point where you have to be a politician.
posted by 23skidoo at 10:06 AM on December 10, 2016 [12 favorites]


Yeah, I mean, talking about what's "realistic" at this stage in the game and what districts are competitive and which ones aren't seems like playing by a set of old-school rules that are so far in the dust at this point that frankly it's willful blindness to keep playing by them, especially if the takeaway is: "oh, we're definitely going to lose, so why even try."

Like, it's true, people usually don't bother to pay attention to mid-term elections, which gives incumbents a huge advantage, but usually we aren't all sitting here obsessively watching political coverage 24/7 as a deranged reality TV star tweets psychotic nonsense and everyone wonders if he may in fact be some kind of Russian Manchurian candidate! That is an unusual situation! So unusual that, in comparison, "a mid-term election with higher-than-average voter turnout that results in unexpected upsets of incumbents" doesn't seem thaaaat crazy to me.
posted by pretentious illiterate at 10:13 AM on December 10, 2016 [46 favorites]


An open letter to the Human Rights Campaign: You rank Wall Street firms on equality. Where do they stand on bigotry in the White House?

This is one area where having the Wall Street guys in the Cabinet is a good thing (I mean, relatively. Not a lot of full-on "good" options these days). The finance industry can be surprisingly ok on LGBT issues. They're robber barons who want to pick our pockets, and they're not going to actively fight for us because they could spend that time pocket-picking, but they're also not going to bother wasting time picking fights against us because, hey, pockets to pick!

"But I've never been a politician before" is only a titanium force-field riiiiiiiight up to the point where you have to be a politician.

I think this is a great angle for the Dems to help drive a wedge between Trump and Ryan/McConnell. Trump has no clue how Congress is supposed to work, and he's going to get mad when he has to deal with the realities of parliamentary procedure. Ryan will respond by pushing his own agenda, Trump will respond by publicly firing McConnell's wife, and if we're lucky we can limp along to 2020 without anything too terrible happening, and swap in a qualified president.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 10:20 AM on December 10, 2016 [6 favorites]


I was just thinking that people seem to be radicalized now to an extent I've never seen before. I always used to be one of the leftier and more politically aware people I knew, but know they seem to be zooming past me. I don't think this will end soon. Not only did Trump lose the popular vote, his favorable ratings are really low.

Friends of mine are already making plans to canvas in 2018, and these are people who maybe canvassed once or twice for Obama and Clinton. I think lefties and Democrats have come to understand that they need to vote in their local elections.

NJ and VA governorships are totally winnable next year.

I am really tired and dispirited after this election, but somehow knowing the deck is stacked against me makes me want to fight harder.
posted by maggiemaggie at 10:26 AM on December 10, 2016 [34 favorites]


Was it worth it, Mitt?
posted by Wordshore at 10:36 AM on December 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


FBI covered up Russian influence on Trump's election win, Harry Reid claims

Harry Reid, outgoing Senate minority leader, compared FBI director James Comey to the agency’s notorious founder, J Edgar Hoover, and called for his resignation.

...Pressed on whether he believed Comey had information on Russia’s influence and sat on it, Reid replied: “That’s right, that is true.”

“I am so disappointed in Comey. He has let the country down for partisan purposes and that’s why I call him the new J Edgar Hoover, because I believe that,” Reid added, calling for the director’s resignation.

“I think he should be investigated by the Senate. He should be investigated by other agencies of the government including the security agencies because if ever there was a matter of security it’s this … I don’t think any of us understood how partisan Comey was.”

...Senior Democrats demanded a congressional investigation next year. “Reports of the CIA’s conclusion that Russia actively sought to help elect Donald Trump are simultaneously stunning and not surprising, given Russia’s disdain for democracy and admiration for autocracy,” said Chuck Schumer, Reid’s successor as Senate minority leader.

“The silence from WikiLeaks and others since election day has been deafening. That any country could be meddling in our elections should shake both political parties to their core.”

posted by futz at 10:45 AM on December 10, 2016 [35 favorites]


Was it worth it, Mitt?

"I sold out my core principals, again, and all I got was this MAGA hat"
posted by T.D. Strange at 10:46 AM on December 10, 2016 [8 favorites]


Typically, midterm elections do tend to swing against the party in charge, so I actually think there's some chance of leftward momentum in 2018 if people start hammering now.
posted by en forme de poire at 10:46 AM on December 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


Typically, midterm elections do tend to swing against the party in charge, so I actually think there's some chance of leftward momentum in 2018 if people start hammering now.

I suspect some red districts with depressed economies might be surprisingly vulnerable to Democratic pickups from economic-red-meat Bernie style progressives, if America Isn't Great Again Yet By November 2018. (And I'm not particularly a Bernie fan.) Like, someone who's willing to really go after the Carrier deal.

(Plus, with dozens of them criticizing Trump all over the country, Trump may spend so much time freaking out on Twitter that he forgets to sign Paul Ryan's bills. We need candidates who thrive on Trump attacks rather than fearing them.)

I'm hoping likely-DNC-chair Keith Ellison focuses on really tailoring candidates to districts, and focusing them on the slice of the progressive platform with the most appeal in each particular place.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 10:57 AM on December 10, 2016 [10 favorites]


For the NJ governor's election, Phil Murphy is the Democrat frontrunner, he's raised a ridiculous amount of money for the race, has a ridiculous number of endorsements including Jon Bon Jovi, and there's a very real chance that nominating him will be throwing away the governorship. He's a Goldman Sachs guy with zero charisma. He's already being compared to Jon Corzine, another Democratic CEO politician who was legitimately a horrible governor and lost his re-election to Chris Christie.

I will be backing John Wisniewski in the primary, but I don't expect him to win.
posted by Rainbo Vagrant at 11:04 AM on December 10, 2016




I suspect some red districts with depressed economies might be surprisingly vulnerable to Democratic pickups from economic-red-meat Bernie style progressives, if America Isn't Great Again Yet By November 2018.

On the last Keepin It 1600 podcast, Missouri Secretary of State Jason Kander had some really good thoughts on how to do this effectively, that in his experience policy doesn't matter as much as authenticity and sticking to your values even if you think the voters you're talking to will disagree with them, because even if you differ on values they'll surprisingly reward you just for showing up and listening and being straight with them and you don't have to compromise progressive values to do that - in fact it sounds like throwing your values under the bus to court red state voters is more distasteful to those voters than holding progressive values in the first place. I hope Kander will be involved with helping red state Dems in 2018.
posted by jason_steakums at 11:32 AM on December 10, 2016 [41 favorites]


It's absolutely heartbreaking to watch democracy denigrate into a year long football game.

especially when we're the football.
posted by quonsar II: smock fishpants and the temple of foon at 11:38 AM on December 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


I've found alcohol helps with the next part, if that's your thing.

There are better ways.
posted by Coventry at 11:48 AM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


CIA: Russia definitely interfered in the election to help elect Trump
DEPLORABLES: Obama's a seekrit Muslim!

CIA: No we're saying they broke into voter records and coordinated with the Trump campaign to cheat the voters.
DEPLORABLES: Lock her up!

FBI: *wild-eyed shit-eating grin*
posted by petebest at 11:49 AM on December 10, 2016 [14 favorites]


I only recently heard Megyn Kelly on NPR promoting her book with a cautionary tale of crossing Trump. She sounded so much like an abused wife who went back I wanted to puke. "Well, he put my and my family's life in danger for over a year, but after I went to meet him as a supplicant and agreed to do a softball interview, he was very magnanimous."
posted by benzenedream at 11:50 AM on December 10, 2016 [11 favorites]


I am dumbfounded by this choice of Tillerson at this time. Either Trump is under strict orders from Putin or else Trump does not give a single flying fuck and believes he can slip this one past the Senate. I think he loses Graham's vote for sure but as for the rest of the Republicans who can tell.

Speaking of which, the Louisiana Senate race is today, is it not?
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 12:20 PM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


Teen Vogue (yes, really!) Donald Trump Is Gaslighting America
As a candidate, Trump's gas lighting was manipulative, as President-elect it is a deliberate attempt to destabilize journalism as a check on the power of government.

To be clear, the "us" here is everyone living under Trump. It's radical progressives, hardline Republicans, and Jill Stein's weird cousin. The President of the United States cannot be lying to the American electorate with zero accountability. The threat of deception is not a partisan issue. Trump took advantage of the things that divide this country, pitting us against one another, while lying his way to the Oval Office. Yes, everything is painfully clear in hindsight, but let’s make sure Trump’s win was the Lasik eye surgery we all so desperately needed.
It's a good essay. You should read the whole thing. She doesn't reveal any new information but she uses the facts to make a point with a clarity and sharpness that is lacking in MSM.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 12:34 PM on December 10, 2016 [81 favorites]


I haven't exactly been reading much, as I'm really not the target audience, but Teen Vogue under Elaine Welteroth has been utterly kicking ass.
posted by zachlipton at 12:39 PM on December 10, 2016 [15 favorites]


This is like a fight-the-aliens movie where the burnt out pilot who nobody thought anything of steps up to be the hero, but in this case it's Cracked and Teen Vogue.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 12:42 PM on December 10, 2016 [51 favorites]


Speaking of which, the Louisiana Senate race is today, is it not?

Yes it is. I voted. The crazy Republican dingbat will win anyway. If it's by less than five points I'll be amazed.
posted by Bringer Tom at 12:45 PM on December 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


Jason Kander is really impressive, he only lost by 3 to Blunt in Missouri where Trump won by 22. And he mainly did it running on unabashed liberal policies.

Just think where we could've been as a party with more Jason Kanders instead of Schumer's warmed over crap salad of dead on arrival Wall St friendly Senate picks in Iowa, Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Arizona. Maybe exactly the same place with no more Senate pickups, but maybe not. But there'd be something of a Democratic bench to build on.
posted by T.D. Strange at 12:47 PM on December 10, 2016 [19 favorites]


This is like a fight-the-aliens movie where the burnt out pilot who nobody thought anything of steps up to be the hero, but in this case it's Cracked and Teen Vogue.

It sure as hell wasn't gonna be CBS. I hope they get bought and looted by our new Russian media overlo- oh, no wait that's what they are now. Well . . . a pox on their prime-time lineup then.
posted by petebest at 12:48 PM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]




Either Trump is under strict orders from Putin or else Trump does not give a single flying fuck and believes he can slip this one past the Senate.

You really think that one or the other is what's going on here, and not both?

And yes, he will "slip this one" and any others he wants past a majority Republican Senate with a comatose zombified Democratic minority that would rather whine and shiver than do anything that takes conviction and courage.
posted by blucevalo at 1:02 PM on December 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


To retake the House, we need those 2.8 million people to move to the midwest, and a magic unicorn to undo gerrymandering.

Google and Facebook should just relocate to the Midwest for 10 years or so. I feel like it's their patriotic duty at this point. I'm not totally serious, but, I dunno, about 80%?
posted by Jon Mitchell at 1:26 PM on December 10, 2016 [6 favorites]


Since I wasn't doing anything else useful unless you count refreshing Metafilter and Twitter, I just called my senators and left a short voicemail, inspired by this script. Specifically asked the [R] Senator to support his Republican colleagues in probing into Russian interference. Asked them both to investigate the PEOTUS's ties to foreign governments. I have little hope this will do anything, but y'know. Full inboxes, empty hearts.
posted by deludingmyself at 1:48 PM on December 10, 2016 [11 favorites]


Good analysis of the Trump Time cover: Why Time's Trump Cover Is A Work of Subversive Political Art

I found the details of the chair particularly interesting. It warms my heart that Trump proudly sat for this portrait with no clue what was being conveyed. Hubris and ignorance will get you every time, Donnie.
posted by lydhre at 1:50 PM on December 10, 2016 [18 favorites]


This period between the election and inauguration is the calm before what is likely to be a very wild storm.

If that one DKos diary I saw is to be believed, we have already seen the beginnings of a seismic shift in how Congress will operate. Apparently the know-nothing branch of the R's wanted to put the Mattis waiver in the continuing resolution to keep the government funded, threatening a shutdown if the D's voted it down -- and the D's said "make our day." Realizing that they own this shit now the R's backed down and instead put in the "limited debate" squib which really doesn't mean anything but makes it look like they got something.

The thing is, it is only about a third of the Republican House caucus that wants to burn the country down. That's a lot for members of the body that are supposed to be running said country, but it's not a majority. They have been depending on the Republicans' habitual long-honed lockstep march to keep the rest of the party in line; even if the burndowners aren't a majority they can threaten the rest of their caucus with the kind of split Reagan warned them was intolerable.

But I think some of them, particularly the old guard who actually remember Reagan, are losing their taste for the game in this form. The burndowners didn't get what they wanted this time. That has to mean a split within the Republican caucus. This may very well be like that fissure on an ice sheet that portends a major iceberg calving. I suspect a lot of the older Republican guard are about at the limit of what they will tolerate and it won't take much more to use up their lifetime supply of fucks-to-give. I certainly don't see those guys switching to D, but kind of like the first realignment when a new iceberg splits in half and the halves overturn. The D's have their own split between the progressives and corporatists, and the interplay of four or five more or less independent subparties realigning will almost certainly be the kind of thing they teach in history classes a hundred years from now, assuming the country still exists and the Earth is still habitable.
posted by Bringer Tom at 1:58 PM on December 10, 2016 [17 favorites]


NYT says it's Tillerson for State

But hey, all his dignity and $25 got Mitt Romney a Make America Great Again hat, so I hope he feels satisfied now.
posted by zachlipton at 2:02 PM on December 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


But hey, all his dignity and $25 got Mitt Romney a Make America Great Again hat

That dinner at Jean Georges was pretty delicious though.
posted by PenDevil at 2:05 PM on December 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


I find the glee at Romney's not getting the position pretty baffling. You'd rather an oil company CEO with deep ties to Russia, because it lets you get one more dig at a pretty normal career politician you don't like?
posted by tocts at 2:07 PM on December 10, 2016 [12 favorites]


I hear the sauteed Mittballs are to die for.
posted by kirkaracha at 2:07 PM on December 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


Republicans who came out of this thing with their integrity and dignity intact:

1) Evan McMullin
2) John Kasich
3) ?
posted by Justinian at 2:08 PM on December 10, 2016 [12 favorites]


I found the details of the chair particularly interesting.

It's not like they went looking for that chair; the picture was taken in Trump's Trump Tower home. It's Trump's chair. That it is gaudy and yet in poor repair is just perfectly in character with its owner.
posted by Bringer Tom at 2:08 PM on December 10, 2016 [21 favorites]


I find the glee at Romney's not getting the position pretty baffling. You'd rather an oil company CEO with deep ties to Russia, because it lets you get one more dig at a pretty normal career politician you don't like?

Agreed. I kind of see it as Romney being willing to let Trump humiliate him if there was even a chance he could get the SoS job and then use it to push back against Russian influence.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 2:09 PM on December 10, 2016 [13 favorites]


I'd be doing handsprings if Romney were SoS. There was no chance Trump would pick him.
posted by Justinian at 2:11 PM on December 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


I find the glee at Romney's not getting the position pretty baffling.

I would prefer Romney as well. But he kissed ass and failed. I didn't post anything gleeful or otherwise, but I can understand those who did post snark. Because now my reaction to him isn't based on whether he can become SoS, it's based on his past actions. And his past actions include seeking and accepting Trump's endorsement in 2012 and appearing with him touting it. An action that validated Trump's birtherism and his position as a power broker in the party. Trump doesn't win in 2016 without Romney's cravenness in 2012. So it's fucking wonderful that he prostrated himself to try to get SoS and be a sane choice, but it didn't work. So fuck any sympathy for him now, because a lot of this is on him.
posted by chris24 at 2:14 PM on December 10, 2016 [12 favorites]


That dinner at Jean Georges was pretty delicious though.

I wouldn't have expected Trump's ass to be that tasty, but it takes all kinds I guess.
posted by Coventry at 2:15 PM on December 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


It was pretty obvious Romney was only there to humiliate NeverTrumpers, just like Patreus was there to show Hilary supporters emails didn't actually mean anything other than to the New York Times and The Intercept. Trump is spiking the ball, he's showing he won, he gets to dominate and humiliate everyone. He was never picking Romney, and Romney could've done some good maintaining himself as a vocal critic.

The charitable interpretation of Romney stepping up for the good of the country had no basis in his entire self-serving career.
posted by T.D. Strange at 2:16 PM on December 10, 2016 [12 favorites]


I think Romney had zero chance. Trump brought him to showcase how previous enemies now love him. That's the only reason he was "considered."
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 2:16 PM on December 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


For me anyway, it's not glee at Romney not getting the position. I surely would have preferred Romney to virtually anyone else who Trump might have considered for the job. And hey, if you want to tell me that Romney sold out the last shred of his dignity in a valiant effort to save the republic, I can somewhat understand that. But at the end of the day, Trump dragged Romney to that restaurant and publicly humiliated him as retribution, and now we're down another reasonably-respected Republican voice on team "this is not normal, this is not ok."

Remember, it wasn't just Romney going to dinner. Here's what Romney said after the meal:
And he said Trump had promoted "a message of inclusion and bringing people together," just hours after the president-elect threatened to jail or revoke the citizenship of anyone burning American flags.
...
“I happen to think that America's best days are ahead of us,” he said. “And what I've seen through these discussions I've had with President-elect Trump, as well as what we've seen in his speech the night of his victory, as well as the people he's selected as part of his transition, all of those things combined give me increasing hope that President-elect Trump is the very man who can lead us to that better future.”
Early this year, Romney called Trump a "con man" and said that he would be the end of the "shining city on a hill."

So no, I'm not celebrating any of it, but it's hard not to say that Romney didn't completely sell out, perhaps with noble intentions, yet accomplished precisely nothing.
posted by zachlipton at 2:17 PM on December 10, 2016 [30 favorites]


romney had no chance in the face of tillerson. nothing mixes better than cheetohs, big oil and russia.
posted by localhuman at 2:18 PM on December 10, 2016


It's not like they went looking for that chair; the picture was taken in Trump's Trump Tower home. It's Trump's chair. That it is gaudy and yet in poor repair is just perfectly in character with its owner.

I didn't know that! And it's virtually identical to the chair Hitler is sitting on in this cover.
posted by maggiemaggie at 2:20 PM on December 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


Agreed. I kind of see it as Romney being willing to let Trump humiliate him...

Sure, and that was admirable, but you can appreciate the humor of the situation without taking glee in it.
posted by Coventry at 2:20 PM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


Tillerson very likely will be paired with John Bolton as Deputy Secretary of State, per @mitchellreports

Exxon CEO and John Bolton at State. We're going to bomb whoever Russia says.
posted by T.D. Strange at 2:29 PM on December 10, 2016 [6 favorites]


And it's virtually identical to the chair Hitler is sitting on

From the time of Louis XIV until the 1950's, that was pretty much the ultimate style of luxury chair you sat in if you were a powerful person lounging. It's a complete stereotype.
posted by Bringer Tom at 2:29 PM on December 10, 2016 [8 favorites]


And honestly, a longer look at Romney's record paints a bit less charitable of a picture. It's hard for me to square the circle on the fact that the same guy who was responsible for Romneycare in Massachusetts would turn around and embrace Paul Ryan and his Medicare and Social Security plans, including their past endorsements of outright privatization, and campaign forcefully for the repeal of the ACA.

You can certainly frame Romney's efforts as a noble effort to save the country and the world from Trump, but I think a simpler explanation, based on Romney's past, is that he really wanted some kind of cabinet position and publicly debasing himself was his only shot at getting one.
posted by zachlipton at 2:34 PM on December 10, 2016 [6 favorites]


So, there's a pretty good chance that the President-Elect of the United States is going to get in a twitter war with Teen Vogue soon.

Ladies and gentlemen...2016!
posted by Cookiebastard at 2:43 PM on December 10, 2016 [24 favorites]


Republicans who came out of this thing with their integrity and dignity intact:

1) Evan McMullin
2) John Kasich
3) ?


I really don't like him for 100 reasons plus 100 more, but if we're filling out the box score, I think we have to give Lindsey Graham a solid single.
posted by petebest at 2:43 PM on December 10, 2016 [40 favorites]


Tillerson very likely will be paired with John Bolton as Deputy Secretary of State, per @mitchellreports

Good god. We're not going to survive this, are we?
posted by photo guy at 2:45 PM on December 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


Even crazy Joe gets it.

@WalshFreedom:
If there was evidence that the Russians helped Hillary win, my fellow conservatives would be yelling for an investigation.
#RussianHackers

@WalshFreedom:
So wait...the CIA says Russia messed with our election to help Trump win and Trump attacks...the CIA?
Not Russia? He goes after the CIA?
posted by chris24 at 2:53 PM on December 10, 2016 [14 favorites]


The primary thing Trump accomplished with Romney is that he silenced a potentially effective critic who might have been able to coalesce some future resistance. Plus the dominance/humiliation factor but under the phony cloak of magnanimity, inclusiveness.
posted by madamjujujive at 2:54 PM on December 10, 2016 [14 favorites]


@WalshFreedom:
Republican silence will be tantamount to treason.
Call 4 an investigation. Foreign governments can't pick our President.
#RussianHackers
posted by chris24 at 3:00 PM on December 10, 2016 [10 favorites]


@BraddJaffy:
McCain: "Putin is a thug and a bully and a murderer ... the relationship between Mr. Tillerson and Vladimir Putin needs to be examined." [video]
posted by chris24 at 3:03 PM on December 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


i should very much like it if the high viz lefty blogs (kos, tpm, lgm, digby, etc) would freeze out nyt and wapo in favor of teen vogue quotes. taibbi, pierce, and borowitz are handling the snark. i want the t-v journos names out ther too, because journalism.
posted by j_curiouser at 3:04 PM on December 10, 2016 [10 favorites]


I mean, if the establishment Republicans wanted a figurehead to coalesce around, I am sure they could find someone. I think the question is whether they have the guts to do anything. I'm going to guess they don't, but maybe they'll discover their conscience and develop some courage at this late date.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 3:10 PM on December 10, 2016


Teen Vogue (yes, really!)

That sounds like what was happening in Iceland during the financial crisis, when an English-language newspaper aimed largely at tourists was the only outfit doing investigative journalism because the Icelandic-language press was all owned by people with their snouts in the trough.
posted by acb at 3:38 PM on December 10, 2016 [24 favorites]


We're going to bomb whoever Russia says.

We'll be providing Reaper drones and Hellfire missiles to help pacify the Finnish insurgency. In return, the FSB will be sharing its SORM mass-surveillance expertise with the FBI.
posted by acb at 3:40 PM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


You can subscribe to Teen Vogue for $5 btw. Five dollars to support this kind of good journalism.
posted by everybody had matching towels at 3:50 PM on December 10, 2016 [34 favorites]


2018: "Donald Trump was impeached and removed from office on the basis of a series of investigative reports in Highlights magazine..."
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 4:10 PM on December 10, 2016 [67 favorites]


2018: "Donald Trump was impeached and removed from office on the basis of a series of investigative reports in Highlights magazine..."

"I only get it for the picture find!"
posted by Talez at 4:17 PM on December 10, 2016 [18 favorites]


2018: "Donald Trump was impeached and removed from office on the basis of a series of investigative reports in Highlights magazine..."

Goofus attempts to run the country by tweeting from a New York penthouse, farming the real work out to neo-Nazis.

Gallant has a transition plan and a strategic team to build a cabinet of knowledgeable specialists to enact her policies as she helms the organization from the White House.
posted by jackbishop at 4:18 PM on December 10, 2016 [57 favorites]


So that's why Goofus and Gallant was recently about the embodiment clause.
posted by drezdn at 4:18 PM on December 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


"Goofus provokes conflict between two nuclear-armed nations. Gallant carefully studies the region and plans carefully and methodically before deciding to upend decades of carefully-established policy."

"Goofus grabs women without their permission and brags about it. Gallant cultivates a healthy relationship based on mutual respect and consent."
posted by zachlipton at 4:19 PM on December 10, 2016 [17 favorites]


When I was a kid, most of my white, male, Baby Boomer classmates said they liked Goofus better. They still do.
posted by oneswellfoop at 4:28 PM on December 10, 2016 [9 favorites]


i'm subscribing. it would be so fucking balls if teen vogue could get a pulitzer for political coverage.
posted by j_curiouser at 4:30 PM on December 10, 2016 [29 favorites]


From the time of Louis XIV until the 1950's, that was pretty much the ultimate style of luxury chair you sat in if you were a powerful person lounging. It's a complete stereotype.

Yes, but Nadav Kander, the photographer who is Jewish and from Israel, picked that one torn chair out of the pile of luxury garbage at Trump Tower. It's not exactly a coincidence.

Compare with what Kander said after photographing Obama as the Person of the Year winner in 2012: “When photographing such a high profile individual, it’s a huge challenge to not let their high profile take over the process,” Kander says. “I wanted to make a meaningful photograph that reflected pause in a person’s life and reflect his humanity.” You think this year's portrait reflects Trump's humanity as Trump wants us to see it?
posted by lydhre at 4:33 PM on December 10, 2016 [8 favorites]


I really, truly get why people here are mad at the NYT and WaPo and NPR. Their uneven and occasionally dangerously biased story weighting is reprehensible in light of Trump's plans moving forward.

But that's the thing. Trump and the right are already full-forward on message that the MSM are irrelevant and untrustworthy. I am seeing my right-wing friends who didn't vote Trump echoing the message that the MSM is the literal equivalent of the fake news people.

And meanwhile the alt right is setting up their own 24-hour news network. It will have full press access to Trump. There are also rumblings across the right that maybe the NYT and MSNBC and the like should not have access to his briefings. That is how you create a State Press that people have to rely on. That is how you undermine the First Amendment. We already know they will have mainstream advertisers, because of Trump's ties with NBC/Universal and their sponsors.

I don't know what the answer is, but helping undermine media that actually fact-checks and values investigative journalism is not a good long-term strategy when we're dealing with people who not only would be thrilled for them to go away, but are currently laying groundwork to bury them completely.
posted by Mchelly at 4:36 PM on December 10, 2016 [27 favorites]


I watched part of Trump's Louisiana rally yesterday and boggled to see a huge crowd of working stiffs screaming their approval of his pledge to slash business taxes by 20%. This man for the working people has the little guys rooting for their corporate overlords now. Up is now down.

Business owners should stop salivating over the prospect of a 15% tax rate and should start worrying about the approach he is taking, modeled after the leadership style of his mentor Putin:

Yashar ‏@yashar
Trump says he will talk to CEOs directly to keep jobs in US. It appears that Putin believes in the same approach. Wait for the pen moment.

Another notable thing in his LA rally, when people chanted "Lock her up, check out his response.
posted by madamjujujive at 4:40 PM on December 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


I don't know what the answer is, but helping undermine media that actually fact-checks and values investigative journalism is not a good long-term strategy when we're dealing with people who not only would be thrilled for them to go away, but are currently laying groundwork to bury them completely.

Yeah, I have to wonder if we'd be better off subscribing to NYT/WaPo and then complaining when they report things that are provably untrue ("Donald tweeted that he had the biggest electoral vote victory in history" with no indication that it's a lie), or present facts as matters of opinion ("Democrats say sky is blue; Republicans counter that sky is green with orange polka dots.").
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 4:41 PM on December 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


The message from that LA rally is some things will be surprisingly sensible, while many others will be an interminable shitshower. Must be nice to just lavaball your id with so many eyes on you.
posted by Burhanistan at 4:43 PM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


The thing is though, the news we really need, the stories that need to be told about a Trump administration, they're not coming out of the press briefing room. Playing shenanigans with press access would be deeply damaging to be sure and a bad sign for freedom, but whether the New York Times gets to sit in that room and ask the occasional question of whatever sycophant gets to be press secretary is largely irrelevant. The real stories will involve buying some 35-year EPA staffer a couple drinks and letting them spill. The real stories will involve FOIA requests and lawsuits and whistleblowers. Nothing of substance will come from having "access."
posted by zachlipton at 4:45 PM on December 10, 2016 [52 favorites]


You think this year's portrait reflects Trump's humanity as Trump wants us to see it?

Well of course now that we see the flaw it's not, but at the time Trump thought it was. It is after all a Trump chair, meaning it's the best chair ever for seating his gold-plated bottom. I'm sure the photographer was subtle in letting Trump think hewas picking the chair. That's how you do it with a monumental egoist like Trump. They have to think they have made all the decisions.
posted by Bringer Tom at 4:46 PM on December 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


Remember that Biden gaffe about Russia from 2009? "'Russia has to make some very difficult, calculated decisions,' Mr. Biden said. 'They have a shrinking population base, they have a withering economy, they have a banking sector and structure that is not likely to be able to withstand the next 15 years, they’re in a situation where the world is changing before them and they’re clinging to something in the past that is not sustainable.'" Similar things could be said about the US rust belt or Brexit-voting rural England or the neglected parts of Germany and France that support their far-right parties.

The difficult, calculated decisions were made.
posted by Luminiferous Ether at 4:47 PM on December 10, 2016 [17 favorites]


I have to wonder if we'd be better off subscribing to NYT/WaPo and then complaining when they report things that are provably untrue

The problem is liberals have been saying these things at least since 2000, and nothing ever changes. If anything the NYT has become even more entrenched in the Church of Broderism "both sides do it" coverage than ever before. Complaining has done dickall. The rise of blogs and online media as alternatives has done dickall to improve their reporting. They literally won't even acknowledge the issue, see the tone deaf responses from the Public editor.
posted by T.D. Strange at 4:47 PM on December 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


The real stories will involve FOIA requests and lawsuits and whistleblowers. Nothing of substance will come from having "access."

Word. Big stories don't come from questions asked at press conferences; they come from digging through the boring day-to-day material generated by the government, and from running down seemingly unrelated leads. Like, say, the arrest of a couple of guys for an office building burglary...

Farenthold at WaPo has been able to do world-class investigative reporting this election without any "access" at all.

We know that Trump & his people will lie to the press. So the press shouldn't waste their time asking them questions. And, frankly, I wish the mainstream press would stop catering to them. If they're going to lie, and you know they're going to lie, don't give them a platform!

WHY do they keep putting Conway on, for instance, when everyone knows everything she says is bullshit?
posted by suelac at 4:49 PM on December 10, 2016 [48 favorites]


How to get back into the White House press corps:

Publish one headline saying "Trump lies, saying ..."
(Trump will provide the lie.)

Then promise to downgrade future headlines with "Trump states, offering no evidence, ..."

Presto, access restored.
posted by ocschwar at 4:53 PM on December 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


This takes on extra significance in hindsight.

[Sept. 5, 2016] U.S. investigating potential covert Russian plan to disrupt November elections

Some congressional leaders briefed recently by the intelligence agencies on Russian influence operations in Europe, and how they may serve as a template for activities in the United States, were disturbed by what they heard.

After Senate Minority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) ended a secure 30-minute phone briefing given by a top intelligence official recently, he was “deeply shaken,” according to an aide who was with Reid when he left the secure room at the FBI’s Las Vegas office.

posted by futz at 4:54 PM on December 10, 2016 [13 favorites]


Well, Kellogg's stopped advertising on Breitbart*, so the Big B is trying to organize a boycott of the Big K. Me, I have made a major purchase of Eggo Waffles (I've done stranger things) and cookies from multiple Kellogg-owned brands (Keebler, Mother's, Famous Amos). And yes, cookies baked by elves is a more credible claim than anything Breitbart is selling.

*why did they put ads on Breitbart in the first place? Did market surveys show alt-righters eat more cereal? Or just a "this audience will buy anything" strategy?
posted by oneswellfoop at 4:55 PM on December 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


It is unlikely that either your Kellogg purchases or Breitbart's boycott will be noticed until Kellogg actuaries point an electron microscope at their figures for the year.
posted by Bringer Tom at 4:58 PM on December 10, 2016


Kellogg owns Kashi too, btw.
posted by wondermouse at 5:01 PM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


MetaFilter: some things will be surprisingly sensible, while many others will be an interminable shitshower
posted by kirkaracha at 5:09 PM on December 10, 2016 [6 favorites]


But... I like cereal...
posted by Justinian at 5:21 PM on December 10, 2016


In other news: "Foes of Russia Say Child Pornography Is Planted to Ruin Them"

Parallels to "Pizzagate" are sadly obvious. Countdown to The Donald declaring a crusade against child porn...
posted by oneswellfoop at 5:43 PM on December 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


Tim Cook, Larry Page, Sheryl Sandberg — and maybe even Jeff Bezos — are going to Trump’s tech summit next week
“I plan to tell the President-elect that we are with him and will help in any way we can,” said [Oracle CEO Safra] Catz in a statement. “If he can reform the tax code, reduce regulation and negotiate better trade deals, the U.S. technology industry will be stronger and more competitive than ever.”
This is not ok. Would it be wrong to mail Catz a copy of IBM and the Holocaust?
posted by zachlipton at 5:44 PM on December 10, 2016 [20 favorites]


This is not ok. Would it be wrong to mail Catz a copy of IBM and the Holocaust?


Did you not see the words "Oracle CEO"?
posted by ocschwar at 5:46 PM on December 10, 2016 [18 favorites]


In other news: "Foes of Russia Say Child Pornography Is Planted to Ruin Them"

Parallels to "Pizzagate" are sadly obvious. Countdown to The Donald declaring a crusade against child porn...


It looks like we're about to enter a dark age for the world. Short of obliterating your DEK once a day, I'm kind of afraid of how this can be used against people.
posted by Talez at 5:53 PM on December 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


Yeah, Oracle would be delighted to sell the licenses for the back-office systems to run the internment camps.
posted by Devonian at 5:56 PM on December 10, 2016 [6 favorites]


from the 'tech summit' article:
“Look, this is obviously a circus,” said one person close to the situation. “Everyone in tech just wants to be invisible right now when it comes to this administration, but has to participate since we have done it before.”

Another prominent techie, Jack Dorsey, CEO and inventor of Twitter, Trump’s favorite method of digital communication, told me last week he was not invited and later said he was not sure if he was.

Meanwhile, with Obama...
posted by oneswellfoop at 5:57 PM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


“Everyone in tech just wants to be invisible right now when it comes to this administration, but has to participate since we have done it before.”

Say it with me, everybody: "N-O-R-M-A-L-I-Z-A-T-I-O-N!"
posted by tivalasvegas at 6:00 PM on December 10, 2016 [10 favorites]


Say it with me, everybody: "N-O-R-M-A-L-I-Z-A-T-I-O-N!"

seriously if even a few of these pandering assweasels had just said no, this is not normal, i'm not attending any meeting with the shitgibbon - but no wait, capitalists can't do that. they have to think of the stockholders. sigh.
posted by quonsar II: smock fishpants and the temple of foon at 6:07 PM on December 10, 2016 [13 favorites]


Short of obliterating your DEK once a day

Do you mean deliberately forgetting data every 24 hours, or some kind of re-keying?
posted by Coventry at 6:17 PM on December 10, 2016


Has anyone commented on this yet?

Shutdown Averted, Senate Backs Stop-Gap Spending Bill
With less than hour to spare, the Senate late Friday backed legislation averting a government shutdown as coal-state Democrats retreated on long-term health care benefits for retired miners and promised a renewed fight for the working class next year.

[...]

The votes came hours after Democrats dropped threats to block the spending measure in hopes of using the shutdown deadline to try to win a one-year respite for 16,500 miners facing the loss of health care benefits at year's end. Instead, the legislation provides benefits at a cost of $45 million for four months.

Democrats invoked President-elect Donald Trump's promises to coal country as they pressed to continue the benefits. Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., a potential member of the Trump Cabinet, led the fight of coal-state Democrats.

But House Republicans were unrelenting and had already vacated the Capitol for a three-week holiday, forcing Democrats to concede. Manchin acknowledged Friday night that he did not have the votes to block the bill, but said "the fight will continue" next year.

"I'm born into a family of coal miners. If I'm not going to stand up for them, who is?" he asked reporters.

Manchin was meeting with Trump on Monday.

The fight gave Democrats, who suffered devastating election losses a month ago at the hands of working-class voters, a chance to cast themselves and not the GOP as the champions of the common man. Manchin was joined by other coal-state Democrats who face re-election in 2018 in states Trump won last month, including Pennsylvania and Ohio.

"We're just getting warmed up," said Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa., vowing a fight next year. "These miners and their families kept their promise, put their lives at risk. ... It's not too difficult for a senator or House member to keep a promise."
We're just getting warmed up... you won't believe how quickly we'll fold next year once we're all stretched and limber!
posted by indubitable at 6:23 PM on December 10, 2016 [11 favorites]


Do you mean deliberately forgetting data every 24 hours, or some kind of re-keying?

Wiping the drive every day.
posted by Talez at 6:25 PM on December 10, 2016


We know that Trump & his people will lie to the press. So the press shouldn't waste their time asking them questions. And, frankly, I wish the mainstream press would stop catering to them. If they're going to lie, and you know they're going to lie, don't give them a platform!


This x1099

And you don't have to know that they're going to lie, either. It's enough to know that they have no compunction about lying. They don't have any fidelity to the truth - to them, it's just a whore to use or discard as they please, like every other thing they interact with in the pursuit of power.

It seems so obvious, but it's absolutely despair-inducing that by and large people and institutions alike fail to employ the zeroth rule of transcending malinformation.

See the Koolaid? Recognize it? Had it before? Didn't like it? Made you sick? Then, how about, DON'T DRINK IT!

Malinformation must be a drug, and there are a whole lot of people with an inescapable attraction to it.
posted by perspicio at 6:32 PM on December 10, 2016 [12 favorites]


You can subscribe to Teen Vogue for $5 btw. Five dollars to support this kind of good journalism.

And right now, MetaFilter is running a special holiday offer of supporting your sanity in this facacta sewage spill of history for the low low price of nothing at all! Or - $5, sure why not. Mmmmmbetter make it $10.

But wait - there's more! Are you a long-time lurker, no-time commenter? Well how much would you pay to score your own login? Act now and receive the first day's favorites for free! And the scond day's! Yes, for less than the cost of the fruit you let go bad in the fridge again, you can join the blue community where the elite meet to get beat by a cheat! All for only five frickin' bucks!

Add an additional sockpuppet account today for free ($5 shipping and handling) and receive the classic theme at no extra charge! Don't wait, click nooowwwww!
posted by petebest at 6:53 PM on December 10, 2016 [16 favorites]


It seems so obvious, but it's absolutely despair-inducing that by and large people and institutions alike fail to employ the zeroth rule of transcending malinformation.

All I can think is a lot of people just aren't ready to believe he can possibly be that bad. The idea that America just went and elected someone who is truly very dangerous to this country, as opposed to the typical politician of recent decades who makes a lot of promises to get elected and then fails to deliver on most of them while we all just go about our business, like we didn't really expect anything to get done anyway.

Many Americans take everything that makes America "America" completely for granted. We really don't know how to handle something like this.
posted by wondermouse at 6:54 PM on December 10, 2016 [12 favorites]


Harry Reid: "I don’t think any of us understood how partisan Comey was."

Really! Comey contributed to both the McCain/Palin campaigns and the Romney/Ryan campaigns. And in spite of that, Obama appointed him FBI director in 2013, the guy who wanted to put Sarah fucking Palin in the White House. And now Comey has put Trump in the White House, thereby destroying Obama's signature accomplishment of Obamacare.

Stop putting Republicans in defense and law enforcement positions. Get a fucking clue, Democrats.
posted by JackFlash at 7:00 PM on December 10, 2016 [64 favorites]


the typical politician of recent decades who makes a lot of promises to get elected and then fails to deliver on most of them
Today’s authoritarians have benefited from the emergence of middle classes that have grown disdainful of democratic politics. ... In large part, this is because democratically elected politicians have overpromised what electoral politics could deliver, vowing that leaders voted into office can almost magically ensure economic growth.

In America, elected politicians have repeatedly made the same mistake of linking democracy to growth, though there’s no evidence that over the short term free politics produces higher growth rates. (Over the long term, many studies have shown that democracy is better for health, welfare, and human development.) And when middle classes and working classes see that economic expansion has stagnated under democratic systems or that growth has come with widening income inequality, they begin to wonder whether an autocratic leader might oversee higher growth rates. They begin to believe an autocrat could cut through political gridlock or take steps such as reducing immigration that, they hope, could somehow lead to greater economic gains for them.

--from Bloomberg
oneswellfoop linked to this article several threads ago (in June! were we ever so innocent?), but it bears revisiting now.
posted by Fish, fish, are you doing your duty? at 7:18 PM on December 10, 2016 [12 favorites]


Wait til you hear about the explosive details of Bingbabi! Ohho! She's - They've really . . . got the goods on her for that one. Plus she sent emails about child pizza which is so corrupt.

Well that's nice work Comey, I guess you can put the mystery of duplicate calendar invites to bed.
posted by petebest at 7:18 PM on December 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


All I can think is a lot of people just aren't ready to believe he can possibly be that bad.

We really don't know how to handle something like this.

Truth.

This is, in fact, the critical flaw of leftism: the failure to discern and/or accept that not all people may be reasonably seen as equal. Namely: those whose morality is antithetical to the greater good, or is absent altogether.

High-minded principles, Enlightenment principles...you know, the principles upon which our nation was founded? They are and always have been aspirational. Living as though they are fully actualized and appropriate to implement in all situations utterly and tragically misapprehends their purpose and significance. It's a lot like walking through the world playing Pokemon Go. What you're doing might make sense to you, but to people living in unaugmented reality, you are a sign of the zombie apocalypse.

Sometimes I just want to shake people until they wake the fuck up.
posted by perspicio at 7:22 PM on December 10, 2016 [13 favorites]


Yknow they already write tv news at a fourth-grade level. Maybe, i dunno, more - colors? Shapes?
posted by petebest at 7:34 PM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


FBI: We need to double check a few more emails.
America: SCANDAL! What if Hillary has secret ties to foreign powers? We can't risk making her president!
CIA: We have extensive proof the Russian government used hacking to help Trump win the election. He knew. So did the GOP.
America: That's probably fine. I'm sure we're fine.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 7:36 PM on December 10, 2016 [47 favorites]


Saw my first "The Democrats are actually responsible for Trump!" argument today. It's gonna be a long four years. Gonna take up sniffing glue. Or perhaps huffing paint.
posted by Justinian at 7:41 PM on December 10, 2016 [8 favorites]


Say it with me, everybody: "N-O-R-M-A-L-I-Z-A-T-I-O-N!"

I'll repeat what I've said all along. Donald Trump was declared "normal" by the Media when he got "The Art of the Deal" published over 30 years ago. And the Media hates to have to admit they've screwed up (especially for 30 years). Still, he was the Very Model of a Modern Real Estate Mogul whose Lying, Cheating, Lawbreaking and Failing were not worth reporting on as long as he was Entertaining. And his one identifiable skill was building his personal brand. He had to be qualified for any job, including President, otherwise he couldn't have gotten his own TV show. Reagan had "Death Valley Days"... what did either of the Clintons have? Nothin. Which is why, if anything is left of the American Republic by 2020, the only person truly qualified to challenge him will be Alec Baldwin.
posted by oneswellfoop at 7:46 PM on December 10, 2016 [8 favorites]


Foster Campbell lost

I hear Antarctica is nice this time of year.
posted by petebest at 7:51 PM on December 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


How's Sen. Al Franken's health? What is he, about 65? A youngster! Maybe he could attack Trump in a 2020 campaign effectively.
posted by thelonius at 8:02 PM on December 10, 2016 [9 favorites]


James Burke was on Dan Carlin's last Common Sense podcast, and he was going on about this inevitable future in 20-30 years where we'll all have personal avatars that compile our political views for governing algorithms that enact the consensus and I'm simultaneously thinking, holy shit this is a ridiculous implausible Kurzweil-esque idea that would be bad for a million reasons and also, uh, could we just have it now please? I'd at least prefer to be fucked over by a cold unthinking machine with no self-interest.
posted by jason_steakums at 8:07 PM on December 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


Washington state presidential electors file third lawsuit in anti-Trump effort

It is a hail mary but it is nice to see some spines.
posted by futz at 8:13 PM on December 10, 2016 [13 favorites]


It is a hail mary but it is nice to see some spines.

Slate had the same opinion: "Finally, liberals are taking a page from the conservative playbook with these extreme long-shot lawsuits."
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 8:22 PM on December 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


Saw my first "The Democrats are actually responsible for Trump!" argument today. It's gonna be a long four years. Gonna take up sniffing glue. Or perhaps huffing paint.

And don't forget trump basically originated that one with his sociopathic dig at Clinton in one of the debates, blaming her for not passing enough laws to make a dirty scoundrel like him play nicer within the system. Let's all sniff glue!
posted by Burhanistan at 8:23 PM on December 10, 2016 [9 favorites]


Justinian: "Republicans who came out of this thing with their integrity and dignity intact:

1) Evan McMullin
2) John Kasich
3) ?
"

Rep. Justin Amash is a frothing Tea Partier whom I agree on absolutely zero with in terms of policy, but to his credit has been aggressively calling out Trump.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:25 PM on December 10, 2016 [19 favorites]


In four years from now we reset the clock to 1929. We'll need a new FDR in eight. We may not be given the chance. This is the no-kidding end of American democracy.
posted by Slap*Happy at 8:32 PM on December 10, 2016 [8 favorites]


Rep. Justin Amash is a frothing Tea Partier whom I agree on absolutely zero with in terms of policy, but to his credit has been aggressively calling out Trump.

It appears his relatively libertarian views aren't just cover for a craven relationship with power when it is held by the right people. Like the renowned taste of Egg McMuffin, I can admire what's being provided without wanting to eat at McDonalds myself.
posted by jaduncan at 8:55 PM on December 10, 2016 [11 favorites]


Harry Reid: "I don’t think any of us understood how partisan Comey was."

He was deputy special council under Ken Starr investigating Whitewater and the lead FBI investigator of the Clinton pardon of Marc Rich. Maybe just maybe he's got a bugaboo about the Clintons?
posted by chris24 at 9:05 PM on December 10, 2016 [10 favorites]


SNL tonight: Walter White Shows Up to SNL as a Trump Cabinet Appointee: ‘I Know the DEA Better Than Anyone’

(I'm actually pretty disappointed the cold open wasn't about Trump tweeting about SNL)
posted by zachlipton at 9:09 PM on December 10, 2016 [5 favorites]






Researchers Baffled by Nationalist Surge

Relevant graph.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 9:26 PM on December 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


And relevant article with respect to why uneducated white Americans in particular would be drawn to an authoritarian xenophobe like Trump.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 9:28 PM on December 10, 2016


The 'through Donald's eyes' sketch was brutal!
posted by ian1977 at 9:46 PM on December 10, 2016


@glitter4goals:
Teen Vogue is headed by a WOC. You know, if you were wondering why they have more guts than most outlets right now.
posted by chris24 at 9:47 PM on December 10, 2016 [36 favorites]


oh and linked previously, but fwiw...
Frightened by Donald Trump? You don’t know the half of it - "Many of his staffers are from an opaque corporate misinformation network. We must understand this if we are to have any hope of fighting back against them."
posted by kliuless at 9:56 PM on December 10, 2016 [9 favorites]


I hate that the general discourse (nationally) has skipped right over GOP electors putting country first by voting for Clinton and gone to how many Dem electors can be counted on to vote for someone who is still fucking bad.
posted by Slackermagee at 10:00 PM on December 10, 2016 [8 favorites]


In further SNL news, it turns out Kate McKinnon can do Angela Merkel too. There's a bunch of pretty stupid stereotypes in there, but this, which I can't fully believe they said: "Ah yes in America you call it the alt-right. In Germany we call it, "why grandpapa lives in Argentina now."
posted by zachlipton at 10:07 PM on December 10, 2016 [35 favorites]


It appears his relatively libertarian views aren't just cover for a craven relationship with power when it is held by the right people

Honestly, I think one of the illuminating things about this election for both sides has been how the split breaks down on people genuinely concerned about abuse of power and people who are concerned when it impacts their team.

I've long had serious concerns about government information gathering and expansion of executive power, as have others, but our views were joined by people who talked a good game while Obama was in office, but shut the hell up when Trump got elected. Prior to this election, it was hard to tell which was which: are you opposing registries because you think they have danger in the wrong hands, or because you think Obama is a Sekrit Muslim?

People like me saw deep danger in Obama using executive orders and other executive powers as an end run around Congress not because he was the worst person ever to make an executive order, but because we saw it as a deeply dangerous precedent and had no confidence the Oval Office would always be populated by wise stewards of the nation. That belief has been borne out. Trump will take office in a time when we have already become accustomed to extralegal measures, including drone assassination of American citizens.

Our polarization meant those warnings couldn't be taken seriously then, but I truly hope they can be taken seriously now. And I hope that Democrats can act with libertarian Republicans to limit executive power overall - not just against Trump, but against all Presidents. We are not a monarchist nation and it is time our separation of powers was enforced.
posted by corb at 10:10 PM on December 10, 2016 [53 favorites]


kliuless,

Thanks for all links. That last one is distressing to say the least. Ugh.
posted by futz at 10:11 PM on December 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


People like me saw deep danger in Obama using executive orders and other executive powers as an end run around Congress not because he was the worst person ever to make an executive order, but because we saw it as a deeply dangerous precedent and had no confidence the Oval Office would always be populated by wise stewards of the nation.

True, that.

We are not a monarchist nation and it is time our separation of powers was enforced.

As a prerequisite to that happening, Congress' affirmative duty to uphold their end of the bargain must be enforced.
posted by perspicio at 10:22 PM on December 10, 2016 [9 favorites]


I have made a major purchase of Eggo Waffles (I've done stranger things)

Ahh, I see what you did there. Well played.
posted by Ruki at 10:40 PM on December 10, 2016 [6 favorites]


As a prerequisite to that happening, Congress' affirmative duty to uphold their end of the bargain must be enforced.

I definitely hear what you're saying there! But this election has made me look at America like a much loved beater car that's gotten pretty battered over the years. The windshield is broken, the brakes are going, the transmission is acting up, the steering is a bit off, there's no heat, and the fender is smashed in. Do we need to fix all of them? Absolutely, we do. But we only have the money for one or two right now. And that means we need to fix the things that will cause our car to have a catastrophic crash. We need to fix the brakes. We need to fix the fascist. Once the brakes are fixed and we have prevented our country from switching to fascism, then we can begin dismantling the rest of the damage. But if we don't save ourselves now, we won't have a country left to fix up. Not as we recognize it, anyway.
posted by corb at 10:56 PM on December 10, 2016 [16 favorites]


Congress' affirmative duty to uphold their end of the bargain must be enforced.

Except that Congress is fucked because the House is gerrymandered and the Senate treats Idaho as if it matters as much as California. I'm with you on the immediate course of action: make the fucking thing roadworthy. But maybe it's been a beater democracy for too long.
posted by holgate at 11:00 PM on December 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


Uh, way longer than intended post incoming. The McMullin/Kasich/Amash/Graham thing has been on my mind a lot the past couple days and is really proving to me that Jason Kander had the right of it in that Keepin' it 1600 interview, that authenticity and sticking to your principles really does cut across party lines. I won't vote for someone like Kasich but the thing that sets these particular Republicans apart for me is that I can tangibly feel how much more I'm willing to listen to what they have to say than I am their fellow party members who are clearly cravenly going against their own professed principles for easy policy wins. Graham is looking to me these days like the Republican McCain wishes he was (see this 2014 story of how he handled Tea Party challengers). I'm really starting to believe that if you run Democrats in 2018 who can do what Kander and Graham can do, talk to frustrated and potentially ideologically opposed constituents without sacrificing your own values to pander to them, you'll see results.

Idk, I'm freaked the hell out by what is happening to our democracy and I've got that voice in the back of my head going "all of this is contingent on there being more elections" BUT I feel like there's this shape forming in the middle - not ideologically middle of the road, but kind of encompassing both right and left - where things like the principled Republicans taking a stand right now, Kander punching way above his weight even if he didn't win, the Save Kansas Coalition rebuking Brownback's policies, Trump coming in with crazy low approval ratings, and the likelihood of people wanting stable and sane candidates after a few years of this, all these things are starting to make this vague outline of a hunger for sane, authentic, principled candidates.

Obama exuded authenticity. Dean did too, and though it didn't get him the brass ring it's why his loss hurt for a lot of us and why his 50 State Strategy was absolutely on point. Kerry didn't - a lot of that was a forced flip-flopper narrative but it's easy to hang that narrative on an establishment politician who communicates in the language of establishment politicians. Romney didn't have it and he just recently proved that again. In the primaries, Rubio was inauthentic and laughably proved it with his weird short-circuiting talking point loop, but even he was able to land some blows on Trump when he went after Trump's lack of principles. Jeb, I think, was actually a principled guy, but just the worst communicator to get that across. Kasich had principles but got lost in the noise, but hell, he's still the name that keeps popping up among Republicans with Trump regrets. Bernie's whole shtick was deep authenticity, toe to tip, and he's a guy who wore Democratic Socialism with pride in the era of Democrats fleeing from the insinuation of socialism, and I've personally heard a lot of midwestern Republicans express at least admiration for him. Trump's biggest asset was a loud tactless snarl that successfully masqueraded as authenticity to a lot of people - they were conned, but that whole obnoxious "he's a straight shooter" thing was getting at that, just like that whole "W is the guy you'd have a beer with" thing.

Oh, and I don't think it's just sadistic gloating that had Trump humiliating Cruz, Christie and Romney, because the one thread in all of it was him showing the public clearly and embarrassingly that these rivals of his were inauthentic before he tossed them aside. It's his go-to move, always attack someone's authenticity because they'll reply like a career politician and Trump will seem right to anyone biased against the establishment, and make up for a lack of your own solid policy by painting the opponent's policies as being based in inauthentically held beliefs. He dangled the same threat around Ryan to keep him in line, Ryan and Trump both knew that Ryan's support of Trump was dependent upon how Trump was polling and if Ryan staked out a hard position against him when he was polling low it would be thrown in his face if the polling changed. But he could not successfully land that blow against the Khans. He could not do it to Chuck Jones. They are genuinely authentic and principled people who carry themselves like it and his attacks gained no traction. When he goes after common people as if they're politicians it backfires. I think loud, brave, principled individual voices from outside of politics and journalism will be the most effective thing in tanking any remaining favorable public opinion on him. This is why that's exactly what authoritarians crack down on. You want people to take a long and serious look at the possibility that maybe we need the electoral college to do their job? One honest and upright swing voter who went for Trump talking on CNN about regretting their choice and hoping the electors don't regret theirs is worth a hundred pundits.

Even though I don't believe for a second in the image that's been pushed about Hillary for years about her being inauthentic and unprincipled, I recognize that way way too many people did believe it and I don't think she ever figured out how to communicate a message to counter it, and I think it's the biggest thing that hurt her - and yet, she was still able to carry the most progressive Democratic platform ever to within a hair of the finish line. Democrats who can effectively communicate that they are authentic and principled and their opponents are not can absolutely pick that up and take it the rest of the way. It's not the policies that are the problem, it's the perception of the candidates as being unwilling to stand up on their own to defend them, because it makes them look like they have an ulterior motive.
posted by jason_steakums at 11:00 PM on December 10, 2016 [104 favorites]


Long but worth it, jason_steakums.
posted by jaduncan at 11:10 PM on December 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


this election has made me look at America like a much loved beater car that's gotten pretty battered over the years ... we need to fix the things that will cause our car to have a catastrophic crash. We need to fix the brakes. We need to fix the fascist ... if we don't save ourselves now, we won't have a country left to fix up. Not as we recognize it, anyway.

The metaphor falls apart on the fact that the fascist is not a malfunctioning system of the vehicle itself, but the would-be driver of said vehicle. The system that ostensibly exists to prevent that eventuality is intact, and may yet work -- we'll know soon enough! -- but it was a crudely conceived scheme at best in the first place, as evidenced by the fact that, without that very system, the prevention would be a fait accompli. Nevertheless, it's currently our best hope of aborting the nascent fascist regime.

Sadly, it doesn't look as though massive direct action is a tool that will be deployed in order to influence the electoral college. So, what other means do we have to "fix the fascist"?
posted by perspicio at 11:36 PM on December 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


I've noticed a lot of people using various ways to avoid saying Donald Trump's name

I prefer T.J. Lubinsky.
posted by y2karl at 11:39 PM on December 10, 2016


I know this is old stuff by now but guys I swear to god I will never get over the fact that I live in a universe in which Donald Trump is going to be President of the United States of America because Anthony fucking Weiner couldn't refrain from sexting underage girls for six goddamn months.

This is not what I signed up for.
posted by Justinian at 11:58 PM on December 10, 2016 [36 favorites]


i just woke up and this thing popped into my head: "President Trump Action Figure, Complete with Removable Hairpiece and Emoluments Clause Action!"

it's not clear how "taking cash payoffs from foreign agents" translates into springloaded movement but i'm pretty sure it's kickass.
posted by indubitable at 12:12 AM on December 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


Have journalists given much airtime to criticizing the Dominionism (aka fundamentalist Christian theocracy) that unifies most of Trump's picks? This is one angle on Bannon, for example, that I haven't seen hammered on. Maybe that's because I'm not as plugged in to news as you all. Or maybe is it just a nonstarter as an angle of critique, because there's a lot of Christians who think "Christian" supremacy is good? I did some searching and didn't find much besides this article from an Indigenous perspective:
More than 520 clergy people from throughout the United States convened at Standing Rock. They directly challenged the dominionist Doctrine of Christian Discovery. Some were even arrested. In an act of protest, the clergy burned copies of the Vatican papal decrees of 1493, and challenged the U.S.'s use of the doctrine to engage in militarized actions against Standing Rock and the Oceti Sakowin.

It is ironic, to say the least, that this powerful historic event, by Christians, against a system of Christian dominionism, took place on the eve of a U.S. election which handed the power of the executive branch of the United States to Christian dominionists. We are indeed on the other side of the Looking Glass. Now it’s a matter of being all the more determined to increase our resolve and our efforts against the doctrine of Christian discovery and domination.
posted by cybercoitus interruptus at 12:24 AM on December 11, 2016 [14 favorites]


Have journalists given much airtime to criticizing the Dominionism (aka fundamentalist Christian theocracy) that unifies most of Trump's picks?
No, and it's very unlikely that the mainstream media will, as building an argument against Christian Dominionism is too dangerously close to being seen as being against Christianity and right-wing Christian leaders already have a demonstrated track record of successfully portraying criticism directed against them as criticism of Christianity in general. In short, I don't think that the American mass media is capable of clearly making the distinction they'd need to to make their case and their targets would hit back, hard. Conservative Christian leaders have spent many very productive years inculcating a belief in their followers that they are already the targets of persecution in America, despite any substantial basis for such a belief. It would be incredibly easy to mobilize that belief in opposition to any discussion of the wisdom of handing temporal power over to individuals whose motivations are primarily religious.

That said, as we rush headlong towards giving many of these people extraordinary amounts of power I do wish there was some way of having a national conversation about the wisdom of this, or at least of making it clear to many of the component groups supporting this effort that they may be being used (e.g. conservative Catholics and Mormons who may be along for the ride need to realize that a not insignificant portion of the Evangelicals who they consider Christian allies don't necessarily have reciprocal beliefs.)
posted by Nerd of the North at 12:52 AM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


And Twitter just restored Richard Spencer's account and verified him. What the everlasting hell?
posted by zachlipton at 1:28 AM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Twitter is the worst social media platform on the planet.

Luckily it's user numbers continue to plummet, and possible suitors have walked away from the negotiation table.
posted by Yowser at 2:02 AM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


I think one thing that is powering my anxiety, beyond the fact that I am an anxious person by nature, is that I just don't see the model for this. I think about the fact that a) Trump only receives security briefings once a week and b) He rejects the findings of these briefings based on nothing, and my breathing gets funny. I mean when, in the history of the planet, has one person had such power and was just so fucking certifiable?

I'm keeping a wary eye on the DC protests. I have medical issues that would make an arrest highly difficult, and I am now getting serious about the question of whether I should put myself in that situation.

I tell myself, *self, you are fucking stoned, fascism takes longer than a day or two to set up* but guys, I honestly don't know. This feels like an elongated 9/11-moment, where any number of scenarios that would be implausible could happen. And because it's not just attack-response, it's well, maybe the unraveling of democratic tradition, it's just so fucking scary. What is the model for this?
posted by angrycat at 2:57 AM on December 11, 2016 [13 favorites]


I mean when, in the history of the planet, has one person had such power and was just so fucking certifiable?

Nero, playing his fiddle while Rome was burning? (Yeah, I know, this didn't actually happen).
posted by mumimor at 3:04 AM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


If you want to get a glimpse at the near future of the US, have at look at this link posted by oneswellfoop above.

So here's my next prediction: In the next six months, we will see a public figure that has publicly criticized the government who will become utterly disgraced by compromising material, such as child porn on their laptop or similar.

The public figure might be a union leader, a judge assigned to one of Trump's trials, or even someone from the inner circle, like Bannon. Or the yet-to-emerge Democrat leader who might have a chance to challenge the regime in 2020.

It will be obvious that there's nothing to the charges and the material was planted, but after two or three of such incidents, the public humiliation of those involved will be enough for self-censorship to develop: Public people will think twice about saying anything negative about Trump; judges will dismiss suits rather than risk the ire of the regime; even the opposition will become risk-averse.

If you think about it, it's really quite obvious and possibly unavoidable at this point: It's the tactic employed and honed by Putin for decades, and Russia will be more than happy to provide the necessary know-how.

In spite of all the chanting during the election, there will be no locking up the enemy. In fact, locking up people will only create martyrs. No, you have to destroy the opposition by making them pariahs even to their own people. Looking on the bright side, this means probably no internment camps for Americans. Or at least not for Americans that matter.
posted by sour cream at 4:51 AM on December 11, 2016 [19 favorites]


Something that popped up on my 'Facebook' - easy, and possibly fruitful

If you want to support Senator Warren's request to audit President-Elect Trump's finances for conflicts of interest, the woman who answered the phone at the Comptroller General of the Government Accountability Office said the most effective way to be sure my support counted was to email two administrators, Katherine Siggerud and Timothy Minnelli. Their email addresses are siggerudk@gao.gov and minellit@gao.gov. There is a third email, congrel@gao.gov, through which they are tracking people who were urging support for an audit.
You can send one email addressed to:

siggerudk@gao.gov, minellit@gao.gov, congrel@gao.gov

Subject line:
Re: Audit for President-Elect Trump's financial concerns

Dear Ms. Siggerud and Mr. Minnelli,
I’m writing in support of Senator Elizabeth Warren's request for an audit of our incoming President-Elect Trump's finances, to prohibit conflicts of interest that would prevent him from carrying out the responsibilities of the office without corrupt influence.
Sincerely,
posted by From Bklyn at 5:12 AM on December 11, 2016 [47 favorites]


In my limited exposure to trump voters on social media, they're still just attributing any and all investigations into the PE's finances to sour grapes from the losers. These are not reasonable people.

I hope that these financial investigations are being done because they always should be, not because they're trying to woo the Woo vote.
posted by aspersioncast at 5:32 AM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


Man, I really hope this doesn't become the conventional wisdom. If it does, I think we're boned.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 5:51 AM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


The Women's March Is Still ON.
“People from across the nation will gather at the intersection of Independence Ave and Third Ave SW, near the U.S. Capitol, at 10:00am” on Jan. 21, march organizers said in a statement on Friday.

From the FAQ on the WMW website:
Securing and then announcing a location for the WMW means we've overcome the biggest hurdles in the permit process. We will continue to work closely with all of the relevant police entities, over the coming weeks, to ensure a safe march with all logistics in place to accommodate the number of people we anticipate convening. For security reasons, we will not release any further details about the march route until a later date.

I am hoping it will be a shining example of women's ability to lead, and proof that progress can be civil, peaceful AND effective, not just the usual 2 out of 3.
posted by yoga at 6:07 AM on December 11, 2016 [12 favorites]


I'm not sure the point that's trying to made about Ellison in those tweets. It would be a big change for the Democratic Party to put him as DNC Chairman, and a serious risk given the critical support the Party has received from impassioned supporters of Israel.
posted by MattD at 6:10 AM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


principled Republicans taking a stand right now

The context is of elected principled Republicans, of which I think we were able to identify four. Two of whom are in the incoming "administration". So.

(Administration just doesn't seem right. "Junta"?)
posted by petebest at 6:17 AM on December 11, 2016


"Junta"?

Politburo.
posted by chris24 at 6:22 AM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


Trumpreich.
posted by acb at 6:23 AM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Maybe it's nation-state-karma:

Instances of the United States overthrowing, or attempting to overthrow, a foreign government since the Second World War. (* indicates successful ouster of a government)

China 1949 to early 1960s
Albania 1949-53
East Germany 1950s
Iran 1953 *
Guatemala 1954 *
Costa Rica mid-1950s
Syria 1956-7
Egypt 1957
Indonesia 1957-8
British Guiana 1953-64 *
Iraq 1963 *
North Vietnam 1945-73
Cambodia 1955-70 *
Laos 1958 *, 1959 *, 1960 *
Ecuador 1960-63 *
Congo 1960 *
France 1965
Brazil 1962-64 *
Dominican Republic 1963 *
Cuba 1959 to present
Bolivia 1964 *
Indonesia 1965 *
Ghana 1966 *
Chile 1964-73 *
Greece 1967 *
Costa Rica 1970-71
Bolivia 1971 *
Australia 1973-75 *
Angola 1975, 1980s
Zaire 1975
Portugal 1974-76 *
Jamaica 1976-80 *
Seychelles 1979-81
Chad 1981-82 *
Grenada 1983 *
South Yemen 1982-84
Suriname 1982-84
Fiji 1987 *
Libya 1980s
Nicaragua 1981-90 *
Panama 1989 *
Bulgaria 1990 *
Albania 1991 *
Iraq 1991
Afghanistan 1980s *
Somalia 1993
Yugoslavia 1999-2000 *
Ecuador 2000 *
Afghanistan 2001 *
Venezuela 2002 *
Iraq 2003 *
Haiti 2004 *
Somalia 2007 to present
Honduras 2009
Libya 2011 *
Syria 2012
Ukraine 2014 *

[Note: IANAFPE, the Interbits coughed this list up first on "governments overthrown by cia". It's way longer than I anticipated, so any informed commentary would be appreciated.]
posted by petebest at 6:36 AM on December 11, 2016 [10 favorites]


The evidence for Australia belonging on that list is a little thin. In the early 20s the 50-year declassification of related documents may kick in, and we may know more. But more likely they will be kept hidden to protect relationships with an important ally.

Here's a great documentary/interview with the Snowden-like figure who stood up for Australia at that time.
posted by Coventry at 6:43 AM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


I'm not sure the point that's trying to made about Ellison in those tweets. It would be a big change for the Democratic Party to put him as DNC Chairman, and a serious risk given the critical support the Party has received from impassioned supporters of Israel.

Please elaborate. As far as I've seen (and I could well be wrong), the alleged "anti-Semitism" of Rep. Ellison relies on a long-ago connection he has to Louis Farrakhan. I've not seen anything to suggest that he actually holds any problematic views or is inclined to cater to such.

The Democratic Party does need a big change! Yes, if Clinton had won we would not be having this conversation, and she lost basically because of a perfect storm of voter apathy, white nationalist resurgence, misogyny, shitty polling data, false equivalency and (quite possibly) foreign interference. But even if she had won, the Democratic Party is, and has been for at least eight years, a minority party, with huge bases of support in the Northeast and West Coast but little reach in areas that aren't right next to a large body of water.

It doesn't have to be like that. Progressivism is not just for "coastal elites", but the approach national Dems have taken have not worked -- and I include Obama in this indictment. He is a wonderful human being and a talented, devoted and patriotic statesman but his personal popularity did not translate to party loyalty for just enough voters, and that made all the difference.

We do need a new approach. We need leaders on the Left who can clearly, authentically (as jason_steakums has eloquently noted above) and unabashedly lay out an intersectional and progressive vision for the country. Trump won by the force of his personality, and the Opposition needs an equally forceful, unmincing personality to stand against him.

This goes for the leader of the DNC, it also goes for elected leaders in the legislature. I'm a huge politics nerd but honestly, I don't think I can even picture Chuck Schumer let alone imagine what his speaking voice is. Liz Warren, yeah, I know what she looks like -- and just by thinking of it, I can hear her anger at the corporate elites who have unbalanced our economy. And for all his faults, Bernie Sanders is in that column as well. We need people like that to be the outraged, intelligent... impassioned voice of the anti-fascist movement.

That is how we win.

Now, is Ellison up to that job? I don't know. But that's the question we should be asking, not "did he work with the Nation of Islam 20 years ago" or whatever, if there's no actual evidence that he's anti-Semitic.
posted by tivalasvegas at 6:46 AM on December 11, 2016 [24 favorites]


The Kingdom of Hawai'i is missing from that list.
posted by Bringer Tom at 6:46 AM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


Maybe it's nation-state-karma

That (mostly) deplorable list notwithstanding, I don't believe in karma and I don't think we should pretend that it's okay that the people of the US suffer just because we, through our government, have done a lot of shitty things in the past.

And I'm not sure those are all the same. Sometimes intervention is warranted, and it goes badly (Libya, maybe?); sometimes intervention isn't legitimate but it ends okay (Grenada? before my time, to be honest). We have a tendency to read legitimacy back into 'successful' regime changes, and conversely to condemn 'failed' efforts. If we had stopped the genocide in Rwanda by swift and overwhelming military force, would that have been considered a legal intervention? If we'd tried harder but failed, would that be considered in the same way?

Furthermore, when we consider the question of 'karma': the people that are going to be doing the suffering at the hands of our neo-Fascist government are by and large not the people who made those decisions, and in many cases are people who opposed them at the time (or would have, if they'd been alive then).

We can't change the past, though we can and should repent, atone and (even) make reparations for it.
posted by tivalasvegas at 6:58 AM on December 11, 2016 [10 favorites]


tivalegas's comment reminds me, on Monday I'm going to be calling Ellison's office on behalf of the local Our Revolution chapter to ask for recommendations for speakers who could talk to us about ways to support his candidacy for the DNC chair, and also the authors of Get Out the Vote: How to Increase Voter Turnout for people who could talk about research into effective GOTV efforts.

Any recommendations from the Blue for speakers on either of these topics would also be welcome. We're in Cambridge, MA, but skype is always an option.
posted by Coventry at 6:59 AM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


I'm really not feeling the schadenfreude in having a President and administration that are puppets for another government that has an even worse human rights record than we do.
posted by maggiemaggie at 7:00 AM on December 11, 2016 [13 favorites]


Ellison is not an antisemite. I say this as a Jew, as a Minnesotan, and as editor of a Jewish paper that endorsed him. This is a smear campaign rooted in Islamophobia and racism, and it is beneath Democrats to give any weight to it. He's a good man, a smart man, and has my support, as he has the support of most major Minnesota Jewish institutions.
posted by maxsparber at 7:00 AM on December 11, 2016 [85 favorites]


For what it's worth, the stock market surge is on Obama's clock. Two reasons: people have not traditionally counted from the time of the election and we'll see how the stock market reacts when Trump actually tries issuing an order such as adding a tariff to Chinese goods.

It's a bit of a fool's game trying to ascribe most market swings to political news. It looks like a reaction on a short-term timeline, but as you pull out the trends tend to follow seasonal patterns. What looks like a short-term reaction to news is usually not.

The period from November to May is historically bullish. If the indexes start to correct in May-June, remember that they typically do this every year.
posted by krinklyfig at 7:04 AM on December 11, 2016


Thanks maxsparber, that's helpful. It's hard to get a read on what is and isn't bullshit when it comes to political figures that aren't quite at a national level of scrutiny (yet).

In terms of Ellison's ability to do the things we've been talking about -- to develop nationwide outreach; to speak to disaffected moderate voters and liberal POC alike; to be a strong, authentic progressive voice of opposition -- what are your thoughts?
posted by tivalasvegas at 7:06 AM on December 11, 2016


@RandPaul:
I am a no on John Bolton for ANY position in the State Departement and will work to defeat his nomination to any post.
posted by chris24 at 7:17 AM on December 11, 2016 [27 favorites]


Ellison is a fighter, and he believes in going after every single possible vote. I think he'd be a good choice to head the DNC.
posted by maxsparber at 7:23 AM on December 11, 2016 [8 favorites]


The markets, as usual, are a terrible index to what is going on. The kleptocracy is, of course, good for business, and Goldman-Sachs is doing particularly fine. Furthermore, a simplistic "markets up, all is fine" narrative hides all that is important.
posted by stonepharisee at 7:28 AM on December 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


The period from November to May is historically bullish. If the indexes start to correct in May-June, remember that they typically do this every year.

'Sell in May and go away' is an old stock market mantra. Also note that the UK markets have been very mixed since the Brexit vote, with the multinational-dominated top 100 stocks doing well due to the weak pound and the more UK-based top 500 doing less well for the same reason. But because Brexit is still no better defined or understood than it was in June, there's a real sense of being in the phoney war period, with the really big shocks still over the horizon.
posted by Devonian at 7:34 AM on December 11, 2016


I mean I wouldn't associate stock market rallies with general goodness for the people of the US or really any particular meaning, but there have been some pretty clear shifts post-election. I've noticed this more clearly with small cap value indexes (e.g., ticker VBR) shooting up and Treasury bonds have dropped pretty steeply basically the moment it became clear that Trump had won.
posted by indubitable at 7:39 AM on December 11, 2016


DJT was on FOX News Sunday and said 3 things of interest:
1) He does not believe in the CIA about the Russian influence "at all." It is just "another excuse."
2) He will not be divesting himself of any of his business interests because "I don't even know if that’s a conflict. I mean, I have the right to do it."
3) He does not need daily intelligence briefings because "I'm, like, a smart person." Which I guess means he is smarter than Obama, smarter than all the Presidents before him.

The Washington Post has more: Trump denies CIA report that Russia intervened to help him win election
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:46 AM on December 11, 2016 [31 favorites]


hisssssing
Lying LIAR
posted by vers at 7:58 AM on December 11, 2016 [8 favorites]


People like me saw deep danger in Obama using executive orders and other executive powers as an end run around Congress.

Again with the Republican bullshit. The Republican myth is that Obama set some sort of precedent in usurping Congress using executive orders.

The fact is that Obama has signed fewer executive orders per term than any president since -- wait for it --Grover Cleveland. Fewer than George Bush, fewer than Saint Reagan, fewer than Richard Nixon, fewer than Eisenhower.
posted by JackFlash at 8:02 AM on December 11, 2016 [71 favorites]


> The fact is that Obama has signed fewer executive orders per term than any president since -- wait for it --Grover Cleveland. Fewer than George Bush, fewer than Saint Reagan, fewer than Richard Nixon, fewer than Eisenhower.

B-b-b-but he used executive power to prioritize which of our 11 million undocumented immigrants were deported, deciding for some reason that children weren't at the top of the list. So, you know, both sides.
posted by tonycpsu at 8:08 AM on December 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


Maybe it's nation-state-karma:

See, the American government has done bad things in the past, so the citizens who will be hurt by Trump's regime change, disproportionately poor, of color, and minority, deserve everything they're going to get. Because they were the ones who choose to overthrow the Shah of Iran in the 50s.

Visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, unto the third and to the fourth generation, right?
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:19 AM on December 11, 2016 [14 favorites]


He does not need daily intelligence briefings because "I'm, like, a smart person."

Whoa, this is actually kind of exciting. I'd been anti-Trump previously, in part because he seemed so intellectually incurious. But if this statement is true, it would seem that this was only because he held all human knowledge, past and present, in his mind already. That's good to know; I imagine it could only be a huge boon to a country's leader! Given the revelation of this ability, I'm actually kind of mad he never ran for office before this.
posted by Greg Nog at 8:20 AM on December 11, 2016 [14 favorites]


He does not need daily intelligence briefings because "I'm, like, a smart person."

This dovetails with something I've been saying all along: Trump is a walking demonstration of Dunning-Kruger syndrome. He thinks he is so smart precisely because he is very stupid.

He is also the living embodiment of Stephen Colbert's long-running joke about how it is superior to think with your gut instead of your brain. Trump doesn't think of genius (like his!) as something that has to study and work to come to a solution; to him, genius is seeing the answer fully formed in your head. "I see a tall building over there with my name on it! Make it so!"

And this illuminates some of his more obvious and spectacular business failures. The crown jewel of this collection is, of course, the collapse of his Atlantic City casino empire, because it takes a special kind of stupid to go bankrupt with a casino license. Trump and Wynn both did so mostly by listening to their gut, which was parroting their ego, and spending way more than the finite and well-known market could possibly finance, especially in a down-trending economy with increasing competition from new markets. Everyone knew all those numbers. There was no chance any of them would change in a way to make either the Taj or the Bellagio viable.

I explained this to one of my coworkers, who could not understand why I keep harping on the casinos, and he said "Maybe he just has vision!" I said no, vision is seeing an opportunity that is there that nobody else can see and following it to success. This was failing to see a bunch of obstacles that everyone could see and driving off a cliff. Trump has done this again and again.

It has worked out so far for him because he was born on third base and has some persuasive powers, which he probably studied in his youth to perfect his manipulation of deal victimspartners. He does not think hard about things, he does not care what is true, he only cares about how the person he is addressing is likely to react to whatever he thinks of saying and there is no brake on the path from his imagination to his mouth, or his twitter account.

It is an absolute certainty that he will make every single decision he makes as CiC the same way, because it's very obviously all he has ever done. He has never listened to experts, or if he listens he then does whatever he wants regardless of their advice. He believes this has always worked for him because he has defined all his failures as brilliant successes, because of his ruthless willingness to shift debt and blame to others and to ignore the terms of contracts when he knows he can get away with it -- and because of that experience, you can bet he thinks that breaking treaties and trade agreements unilaterally when it suits us will be a brilliantly clever move that can't possibly turn pear-shaped on us.

So of course he doesn't think he needs briefings; his gut, which is smarter than those CIA guys, tells him there's no way his bud Putin messed with our shit. So those guys are obviously wrong. And his gut is busy defining the word "conflict" so that he won't have to do something he definitely doesn't want to do. And when he drives the country over a cliff, it will all be someone elses fault for failing to be worthy of his genius vision.
posted by Bringer Tom at 8:21 AM on December 11, 2016 [62 favorites]


Here is the quote about the once a week intelligence briefings:

"I get it when I need it," Trump said of intelligence reports. "I don't have to be told — you know, I'm like, a smart person. I don't have to be told the same thing in the same words every single day for the next eight years. ... But I do say, 'If something should change, let us know.'"
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 8:21 AM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Also re: executive power, rather than having to debunk the same false claims again, how about we continue the "has Obama expanded executive power" discussion from where we left it before?
As noted in a previous response, numbers and citation included: "Obama has issued significantly fewer executive orders than other modern presidents."
---
Obama has issued fewer executive orders than some presidents, but he has radically expanded executive power with what he has done with those executive orders. He has had far more controversial executive orders than past presidents. How many controversial executive orders of Clinton or Bush can you name?
---
This list is a good start for Dubya, and this Heritage piece has a lot of gripes about Clinton's.
---
Quite a few, but whether or not something was controversial doesn't in any way imply anything about whether or not the controversy was legitimate. It was controversial that Bush II expanded executive power, and while I have some reservations about the way that Obama has continued that, the two things that have ameliorated that somewhat for me are reading more about the structural lack of clear popular legitimacy between the executive and legislative branches (as opposed to how parliamentary systems work), and that I generally agree with his policies. Ultimately, I'd rather see policies I agree with enacted than adhere to the hypocritical and sanctimonious ideal put forth by critics of the executive orders. I recognize that ultimately constitutional law is process oriented, and that by taking these actions, Democrats and liberals lose some of the moral standing to object to future abuses of executive power by Republic presidents, but my hunch is that the shifting mores of political power will lead to a much stronger executive relative to the legislature in the coming century, so those complaints are unlikely to find as much purchase on the left or right.
posted by tonycpsu at 8:22 AM on December 11, 2016 [10 favorites]




This interview is his closing argument to be rejected by the EC?
posted by ipe at 8:24 AM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


Some good news: Democrat Anne Sung won in a run-off election yesterday in Houston, Texas for HISD District VII by 27 votes. We are the 4th largest city and this former local teacher with advanced degrees in public service beat conservative lobbyist John Luman by 27 votes. Her win makes the School Board lean left by one.

This run off was discussed at our local packed house Pantsuit Republic meeting last Wednesday. Those 27 votes could have easily been in that room that night. Every vote counted. Local elections y'all!
posted by dog food sugar at 8:44 AM on December 11, 2016 [52 favorites]


@marcorubio:
Being a "friend of Vladimir" is not an attribute I am hoping for from a #SecretaryOfState - MR
posted by chris24 at 8:50 AM on December 11, 2016 [20 favorites]


Trump's Cabinet Transcends the Concept of Parody
Perfect:
Donald Trump has narrowed his search for energy secretary to four people, with former Texas Governor Rick Perry the leading candidate, said people familiar with the president-elect’s selection process.

Two Democratic senators from energy-producing states — Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota and Joe Manchin of West Virginia — are also in the mix, along with Ray Washburne, a Dallas investor and former chairman of the Republican National Committee.
Heitkamp and Manchin would be shrewd choices, but my guess is that he goes with the most obviously ridiculous selection. That’s been the trend so far. And you can’t get much more ridiculous than an oil company lackey who destroyed his political career in large measure by forgetting the existence of the Department of Energy as the Secretary of Energy.
posted by tonycpsu at 8:57 AM on December 11, 2016 [13 favorites]


2014

@realDonaldTrump:
Fact--Obama does not read his intelligence briefings nor does he get briefed in person by the CIA or DOD. Too busy I guess!
posted by chris24 at 9:00 AM on December 11, 2016 [13 favorites]


In terms of Ellison's ability to do the things we've been talking about -- to develop nationwide outreach; to speak to disaffected moderate voters and liberal POC alike; to be a strong, authentic progressive voice of opposition -- what are your thoughts?

I'm not the person you were asking but here are my thoughts! For context, I was a strong Hillary supporter from the start and thought Howard Dean should get the DNC chair job before he dropped out. So the exact opposite of a hardcore Bernie supporter.

1. Ellison has a good record for increasing turnout in his home district. Hopefully those lessons translate to other districts.

2. He's willing to step down from Congress and do the job full time.

3. He was a strong Bernie supporter during the primary but pivoted to strongly supporting Hillary in the general. No sour grapes or desire to sow divisiveness.

4. He's garnered support for DNC chair from both Bernie Sanders and Chuck Schumer. So he may be on the progressive firebrand side of the scale, but it shows that the man can play politics.

5. He's said the magic words "fifty state strategy" that make me happy. He's actually talked about it at an even more granular level -- a 3,143-county strategy.

6. Finally, there have been a lot of attempts to sow division between the "it's the economy!" wing of the Democrats and the "party of diversity!" wing, and I think Ellison helps bridge that gap and get to the "it's the both!". He's a black man and a Muslim living in Trump's America, so we know that he Gets It™. (2018 and 2020 will actually be great "it's the economy, stupid!" opportunities since Trump is likely to help only the wealthiest -- and if the Trump Economic Bubble pops quickly, not even them.) I think Ellison is uniquely suited to drive that economic message without abandoning any of the rest of the platform (or instilling anxiety that such abandonment might occur).

I'd recommend listening to his Keepin' it 1600 interview. I came away from it much happier with the prospect of him running the show.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 9:05 AM on December 11, 2016 [29 favorites]


This dovetails with something I've been saying all along: Trump is a walking demonstration of Dunning-Kruger syndrome. He thinks he is so smart precisely because he is very stupid.

Yes, I suppose we can all agree on that within this respected society. And generally, I think your analysis has a lot going for it. But with the security briefings, I think there is something else in play, which is denial of liability. It is absolutely another example of the infantile workings of his mind, because of course the president doesn't get to blame Meredith. But to some extent, it is also something that is proven to work within the fields he has engaged with: construction and reality TV. Even for more "normal" big investors in the construction industry, lawsuits are rife. And you learn early on to make sure you can deny liability, by not putting anything in writing, by not being there or answering questions, by lying about absurd stuff, by having two sets of books, by threatening contractors and sub-contractors who claim their rights. I bet his dad taught him all that first thing.

Same in the reality business, as he summed it up in that famous "grab them.." quote. Do whatever you want, deny everything, and then threaten anyone who is bold enough to stand against it.

Bush fatally ignored a security briefing. In Trump's mind, the lesson learned from that failure is not to listen closer to security briefings, but to refuse to participate at all (just like Nixon - I'm beginning more and more to think that he has actually read a book - a Nixon bio which I can't find right now). That way, in his mind, he can claim he didn't know, or didn't believe, or that intelligence are stupid.

That all said, I believe there is also a more profound form of denial: he is a yet another Republican man who very obviously deals emotionally with complex challenges by pretending they don't exist, and instead creates his own reality. We know those guys already. I don't know how to deal with them, but I do know we've tried making sense for more than a generation, and it doesn't work. Maybe another approach is warranted.
posted by mumimor at 9:07 AM on December 11, 2016 [21 favorites]




> Utah tea party Sen. Mike Lee confirmed Friday that he plans to reintroduce the "First Amendment Defense Act," or FADA, a sweeping anti-LGBT measure that would allow individuals, businesses and others to discriminate against same-sex couples based on their religious beliefs.

I can't wait to see where our new "libertarian" friends like Rand Paul and Justin Amash are on this. Paul has previously spoke in favor of striking anti-discrimination laws, and Amash has said they do more harm than good.
posted by tonycpsu at 9:15 AM on December 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


Bush fatally ignored a security briefing.

It was actually much worse than that. There was deliberate, systematic ignorance of the threat of Islamic terrorism by the entire Bush administration as soon as they took office. Until the first planes hit, they were convinced the whole threat was some kind of Clinton grandstanding.
posted by Coventry at 9:16 AM on December 11, 2016 [21 favorites]


Yeah, wag the dog
Sigh..
posted by mumimor at 9:18 AM on December 11, 2016


To get Trump to read the Security Briefings they either need to give them headlines like "Shameful things the liberal media is saying about Trump and also terrorists plan a strike in the American Midwest." Or, they could have a 16 year old tweet at Trump "CNN is a disgrace. ISIS is planning coordinated attacks on US Embassies."
posted by drezdn at 9:20 AM on December 11, 2016 [16 favorites]


It was actually much worse than that.

You mean Cheney's national-security-secret meetings with Exxon on how to rob Iraq of its oil on Day One? Yeah.
posted by petebest at 9:21 AM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Democracy For America is holding a vote asking who they should endorse for DNC chair.
posted by Coventry at 9:32 AM on December 11, 2016


Remember, we know Trump doesn't (and/or can't) read. At least not in any structured or sustained fashion. It's why he's drawn to cable news and twitter, those are digestible pieces of information that fit within his very limited attention span. He's never going to *read* security briefings or policy memos like Obama, and even Bush, did for hours every night. To the extent he consults with the policy people, it will all be orally, and the rest of the time he'll continue getting everything he knows about the world from FOX, CNN, and soon from his own state/TrumpTV.
posted by T.D. Strange at 9:39 AM on December 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


NYT Op-Ed: The Dangers of Echo Chambers on Campus: I fear the damage a Trump administration will do, from health care to foreign policy. But this election also underscores that we were out of touch with much of America, and we will fight back more effectively if we are less isolated.

Right, so the problem with this, of course, is that the damage a Trump administration is going to do will very likely isolate way more people than the (white, privileged) people who feel isolated now. And may very well kill people.

I'm really tired of being warned of the danger of the echo chambers anywhere. Did they contribute to the devastating surprise on election night? Yes. But I'm not going to all of the sudden consider Trump supporters as legitimate. If you are still supporting someone who thinks he is too smart for a daily intelligence briefing, I have no reason to consider you as a thoughtful person.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 9:42 AM on December 11, 2016 [29 favorites]


I don't believe that he's actually illiterate. Lazy and arrogant, sure.
posted by thelonius at 9:47 AM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


I get a little tired of venues like the NYT talking about "campuses" as if that word is equivalent to "faculty at elite universities." I promise you that students on my campus are encountering Republicans. Most colleges don't have a lot in common with Oberlin.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 9:50 AM on December 11, 2016 [27 favorites]


If the evidence for his illiteracy is that deposition where he seems to struggle, I'm pretty sure he was just being obstructionist.
posted by Coventry at 9:50 AM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]




I'm really tired of being warned of the danger of the echo chambers anywhere. Did they contribute to the devastating surprise on election night? Yes. But I'm not going to all of the sudden consider Trump supporters as legitimate. If you are still supporting someone who thinks he is too smart for a daily intelligence briefing, I have no reason to consider you as a thoughtful person.

I don't think it's about considering them thoughtful people. It's about the broader left's difficulty in selling our ideas to folks who *aren't* thoughtful people about politics. We get caught up in the fact that we're 100% right about something, while the other side is perfecting their sales pitch for their policies that are 100% wrong.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 10:03 AM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


If anybody asks why I refuse to support the NYTimes with a financial subscription, it's because the mealy-mouthed tripe Kristof wrote is just part of a broader pattern of shittiness they happily publish.
posted by qcubed at 10:06 AM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


The Republican myth is that Obama set some sort of precedent in usurping Congress using executive orders.

For the love of Christ, it has to be possible to talk about the expansion of executive power without this partisan blind defensiveness, or we are all fucked.

When I say "Obama expanded executive power", I'm not saying "Obama, alone among presidents, was naughty and increased executive power." I'm saying that I evaluate each and every presidency, including Clinton and Bush, to see if executive power expanded or shrunk under their watch. Executive power expanded under Bush; Obama inherited an expanded executive, which he then used and in his turn expanded.

Nearly every single president sets a precedent on something, so yes, Obama did set precedents, as did Bush before him. Carter set a precedent when he terminated a treaty without Senate approval, and when the Supreme Court failed to hear Goldwater v Carter. Clinton, unintentionally, set a precedent when Clinton v Jones made clear that the President was still liable for pre-presidency actions - a precedent that may be really fucking useful this term. The War Powers Resolution under Bush set a precedent when it granted the President the ability to attack any nation they think aided in 9/11. Precedents are set by actions and by what Presidents get away with.
posted by corb at 10:14 AM on December 11, 2016 [22 favorites]


He doesn't want briefings because there will be a baseline assumption that he absorbs at least their generalities, and he either can't or won't. He really is a null array.
posted by holgate at 10:17 AM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


McCain, Graham, Schumer & Reed just released a joint statement on Russian interference in the election:

“While protecting classified material, we have an obligation to inform the public about recent cyberattacks that have cut to the heart of our free society. Democrats and republicans must work together, and across the jurisdictional lines of the Congress, to examine these recent incidents thoroughly and devise comprehensive solutions to deter and defend against further cyberattacks.

This cannot become a partisan issue. The states are too high for our country[…]”

IMO: It's time to put the heat on every other Congresscritter to pick a side, here.
posted by deludingmyself at 10:21 AM on December 11, 2016 [51 favorites]


Facing pressure to cut special education, Texas schools shut out English Language Learners: Districts have used a range of tactics, from refusing to conduct eligibility evaluations in other languages or accept medical records from other countries to blaming language barriers for problems caused by disabilities, according to data and interviews with dozens of current and former educators. Some have eliminated special education altogether from schools for international students.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 10:24 AM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


> Executive power expanded under Bush; Obama inherited an expanded executive, which he then used and in his turn expanded.

Missing: any facts to support this claim.

Obama has certainly used every bit of executive power given to him, but once authority is ceded, using it more often is not an expansion. Congress has for a long time been ceding ground on foreign policy, and certainly Obama's done nothing to give any of that power back to force Congress to do their job. Still, an escalating number of drone attacks isn't an expansion of the authority to conduct drone attacks that Bush set the precedent for, it's just using that authority more often. If Obama used his pardon power one more time than Bush did, would we say he's expanded executive power, or just used the same power that was always there?
posted by tonycpsu at 10:31 AM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Facing pressure to cut special education, Texas schools shut out English Language Learners: Districts have used a range of tactics, from refusing to conduct eligibility evaluations in other languages or accept medical records from other countries to blaming language barriers for problems caused by disabilities, according to data and interviews with dozens of current and former educators. Some have eliminated special education altogether from schools for international students.

There's a special place in hell for people like these. They better hope that God isn't real.
posted by Talez at 10:32 AM on December 11, 2016 [18 favorites]


For the love of Christ, it has to be possible to talk about the expansion of executive power without this partisan blind defensiveness, or we are all fucked.

For the love of Christ, we have to call out Republican bullshit for being bullshit or we are all fucked. No we don't have to be polite. Bullshit is bullshit.

As Frankfurt said "Bullshit can be neither true nor false; hence, the bullshitter is someone whose principal aim—when uttering or publishing bullshit—is to impress the listener and the reader with words that communicate an impression that something is being or has been done, words that are neither true nor false, and so obscure the facts of the matter being discussed."

In your original accusation, you didn't cite Clinton or Bush or Carter, or the Supreme Court?? or Congress about precedent. You accused Obama, the president who has issued fewer executive orders than any president in the last 100 years. And you did that because the hysteria about executive orders was something whipped up by the Republican noise machine by the likes of Hannity and Ingraham and Limbaugh and McConnell etc. only when Obama took office.

That's bullshit because it's truth or falsity is irrelevant. It's simply an accusation thrown out by Republicans to advance their agenda.
posted by JackFlash at 10:34 AM on December 11, 2016 [14 favorites]


McCain, Graham, Schumer & Reed just released a joint statement on Russian interference in the election:

McCain and Graham promise hearings without the support of the Majority Leader, who controls whether or not there are hearings.
posted by T.D. Strange at 10:37 AM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


McCain and Graham promise hearings without the support of the Majority Leader, who controls whether or not there are hearings.

On the Senate floor: yes. In the Armed Services Committee (which McCain chairs): ??
posted by deludingmyself at 10:45 AM on December 11, 2016 [8 favorites]


I don't think it's about considering them thoughtful people. It's about the broader left's difficulty in selling our ideas to folks who *aren't* thoughtful people about politics. We get caught up in the fact that we're 100% right about something, while the other side is perfecting their sales pitch for their policies that are 100% wrong.

Yeah, effective communication is a huge deal. It's tempting and efficient to talk about issues as settled and solutions as obvious - and in many cases that may true! But we need to take things back to base principles and frame the discussion in ways that engage the audience's empathy to talk about them. I scrapped another big ol' comment last night about framing jobs, automation, and income inequality this way as a way to get people receptive to hearing Hillary's infrastructure jobs plan, the gist being that you go back to base American principles, frame the partisan political fighting on the topic as politicians on both sides being afraid of owning the fact that the world has changed and their solutions didn't help, show an understanding and admiration that American workers have long been trying to square their own conflicting principles of supporting American entrepreneurship and wanting jobs to support their families with dignity, but that it's time to acknowledge that pit in all our guts that says the workers have been standing up for the so-called job creators while those creators have been hiring one person to do the work of ten and pocketing the difference. Simple truths like that are how you get traction but you need to go back to base concepts and walk people through, while acknowledging that their principles might make them skeptical of an approach but all the old approaches didn't work. It takes patience and it takes simplifying your message in a way that might feel tedious but I think you could straight up sell a plan directly from Hillary's platform to a skeptical audience that way.
posted by jason_steakums at 10:52 AM on December 11, 2016 [8 favorites]


McCain, Graham, Schumer & Reed just released a joint statement on Russian interference in the election:

Yeah funny thing about that list of names:
On August 12, 2016, DC Leaks released roughly 300 emails from Republican targets, including the 2016 campaign staff of Arizona Senator John McCain, South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham, and 2012 presidential candidate and former Minnesota Representative Michele Bachmann.[9]
posted by zachlipton at 11:19 AM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Also, in Trump's interview today, he told Wallace that just last week he turned down seven business deals because he thought it could be perceived as a conflict of interest. Turning down deals is a conflict of interest too. Discussing business deals is a conflict of interest. Why was he even having these meetings?
posted by zachlipton at 11:21 AM on December 11, 2016 [38 favorites]


Unless they plan to act before the EC votes, it will end up just being circusy crap. And Obama will get the blame.

Good on you for releasing a bipartisan statement that the Russian state destroyed democracy for a generation but.

"Your parents have agreed to discuss the cause of the fire currently enveloping the kitchen and expect to reach some agreed-upon resolution in time for the return to school next Fall."
posted by petebest at 11:27 AM on December 11, 2016 [20 favorites]


Facing pressure to cut special education, Texas schools shut out English Language Learners: Districts have used a range of tactics, from refusing to conduct eligibility evaluations in other languages or accept medical records from other countries to blaming language barriers for problems caused by disabilities, according to data and interviews with dozens of current and former educators. Some have eliminated special education altogether from schools for international students.

There's a special place in hell for people like these. They better hope that God isn't real.


"I was a foreigner, and you did not welcome me."
posted by EarBucket at 11:29 AM on December 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


I think painting these campaigns as quixotic and pointless is counterproductive. No, I don't believe we'll actually prevent the inauguration. But narratives matter and beliefs matter, and though states have a momentum and a life of their own, they are, at the bottom, ultimately made up by individuals whose perceptions mold the state. And shaping those perceptions is important.

The Republicans were good at this. They exploited a widespread belief in Obama's illegitimacy to win elections and maintain public support for their obstructionism. And we are well-primed to do the same now, because there is a sweet shitload of evidence for delegitimization. The narrative that the presumptive electee lost the popular vote by a historic margin is good. The narrative of Russian interference and general dirty tricks is good. If there is significant electoral college defection, that's good too. Every recorded instance of the American body politic rebelling against this conclusion serves to delegitimize the administration. That's important. That is important even if the momentum of the state continues to hurtle it towards its doom.
posted by jackbishop at 11:40 AM on December 11, 2016 [39 favorites]




I've never read any Clinton supporter calling Sanders a Russian sympathizer.
posted by PenDevil at 11:51 AM on December 11, 2016 [33 favorites]


I mean, it's all well and good to accuse the Democrats of stirring up some old fashioned Red Panic if not for the fact that Russia did, in fact, hack the DNC and give material to Wikileaks to help Trump's campaign. For starters.
posted by lydhre at 11:55 AM on December 11, 2016 [45 favorites]


I feel like "blaming the Russians is all hysteria" would be a better argument if the Russians hadn't been messing around in our election?

On preview: what lydhre said!
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 11:57 AM on December 11, 2016 [9 favorites]


Jill Stein appeared to me to be a Russian stooge when I saw that picture of her at the dinner table with Putin and Flynn, looking extremely pleased with herself.
posted by maggiemaggie at 11:57 AM on December 11, 2016 [11 favorites]


I'm sure the Green Party was very pleased when Russia Today paid for their primary debate.
posted by Yowser at 11:59 AM on December 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


if not for the fact that Russia did, in fact, hack the DNC and give material to Wikileaks to help Trump's campaign. For starters.

Wikileaks says they did not.
posted by Coda Tronca at 12:00 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Stooge or useful idiot? Her grip on political reality seems tenuous at best.
posted by acb at 12:00 PM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Wikileaks is authorities on two things.

Jack, and his brother.
posted by Yowser at 12:00 PM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


Greenwald seems to think that it's worse to accuse someone of being a russian stooge than it is to actually be one.
posted by octothorpe at 12:02 PM on December 11, 2016 [23 favorites]


I mean, it's all well and good to accuse the Democrats of stirring up some old fashioned Red Panic if not for the fact that Russia did, in fact, hack the DNC and give material to Wikileaks to help Trump's campaign. For starters.

I'd also point out that the Democrats are talking about something that seems to actually have happened, while the Trump campaign was putting out stuff like this:

​CLINTON’S CLOSE TIES TO PUTIN DESERVE SCRUTINY
Four Times When Hillary Clinton And Her Allies Sold Out American Interests To Putin In Exchange For Political And Financial Favors
OCTOBER 04, 2016

(note: still on his official website)

So was Trump stirring up Red Panic too? Or just muddying the waters for his own protection?
posted by bluecore at 12:09 PM on December 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


As Craig Murray factually points out, "in 10 years not one of the tens of thousands of documents WikiLeaks has released has had its authenticity successfully challenged."

I'm not sure how 'no one has successfully challenged the authenticity of the documents they released' has any bearing whatsoever on the claim that either (1) information was selectively leaked to them (ie, DNC information but not RNC information), or that they selectively leaked information themselves; or (2) that the ultimate source of the leaked documents was the Russian government -- 'authenticity' in the sense Murray is using it is 'are really DNC emails,' not 'were or weren't obtained by Russian and provided to Wikileaks.'

Yes, people have in prior discussions this year raised the question of whether, say, the DNC leaks are authentic. But that's not the question that was raised here; acting as if it was is moving the goalposts to a whole other field.
posted by cjelli at 12:12 PM on December 11, 2016 [20 favorites]


Wikileaks says they did not.

How is that worth anything? I am sure that a guy didn't show up wearing a KGB dress uniform and hand them the files. So what? Cutouts are one of the oldest pieces of tradecraft in existence. Wikileaks would have no idea if the Russians were behind the stuff.
posted by Justinian at 12:16 PM on December 11, 2016 [11 favorites]


So was Trump stirring up Red Panic too? Or just muddying the waters for his own protection?

trump's mirror etc etc
posted by entropicamericana at 12:16 PM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


Also, stating the CIA's conclusions based on widespread reporting in the WaPo among others is not "a random insult".
posted by Justinian at 12:17 PM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


I discussed Craig Murray's article a bit over here in the other thread. He's seriously claiming that these were insider leaks, not hacks, which basically requires believing that Podesta leaked his own emails. Why should anything he says be taken seriously after that?

There is no reason to believe Assange, Murray, or anyone else at WikiLeaks actually knows the true origin of the material they leaked.

Anyway, Jason Kander makes a good point about Trump's refusal to receive intelligence briefings: "As someone who used to risk my life to collect this type of info, I can't imagine how I'd feel if Pres Bush had said it didn't interest him."

I mean, I can imagine, because we have a document that says "Bin Ladin Determined To Strike in US," but yeah, people die for the stuff that's in those briefings, and even if you think there should be a heck of a lot less spying going on, ignoring that is malpractice.
posted by zachlipton at 12:18 PM on December 11, 2016 [34 favorites]


'authenticity' in the sense Murray is using it is 'are really DNC emails,' not 'were or weren't obtained by Russian and provided to Wikileaks.'

So you've got every right to read them. That's all Wikileaks says.

Also, stating the CIA's conclusions based on widespread reporting in the WaPo among others is not "a random insult".

I trust Wikileaks more than the CIA or the WaPo based on everything we know about either organisation.
posted by Coda Tronca at 12:19 PM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


So does Trump. So you guys have that in common at least.!
posted by Justinian at 12:19 PM on December 11, 2016 [20 favorites]


"in 10 years not one of the tens of thousands of documents WikiLeaks has released has had its authenticity successfully challenged."

That's a worthless metric, because classified information stays classified even after being leaked. No one with enough access to challenge any of the documents will do so for that reason. The classic neither confirm nor deny thing.

Wikileaks says they did not.

If Wikileaks is doing their job correctly, they have no idea who is giving them information, right? The public forensics on the DNC hack have been linked to repeatedly here and the CIA/FBI/NSA are going to have quite a bit more information that is not public.

No, you just issued a random insult in their direction.

It's feeling like you're not approaching this discussion in good faith, given that you seem to be only hurling one liners into it.
posted by Candleman at 12:20 PM on December 11, 2016 [14 favorites]


It was actually much worse than that. There was deliberate, systematic ignorance of the threat of Islamic terrorism by the entire Bush administration as soon as they took office.

Bush Received More Warnings About 9/11 Than We Realized
On May 1 the CIA said that a terrorist group in the U.S. was planning an attack.

On June 22 it warned that this attack was "imminent."

On June 29 the brief warned of near-term attacks with "dramatic consequences" including major casualties.

On July 1, the briefing said that the terrorist attack had been delayed but "will occur soon."

On July 24, the president was told again that the attack had been delayed but would occur within months.
On July 10, in an in-person meeting at the White House, Condoleeza Rice was told:
There will be significant terrorist attacks against the United States in the coming weeks or months. The attacks will be spectacular. They may be multiple. Al Qaeda’s intention is the destruction of the United States.
When President Bush was given the notorious PDB Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S., he was on vacation from August 3 to September 3, tying "one of Richard Nixon's as the longest that any president had ever taken."
...up until Sept. 11, 2001, Bush had spent 54 days at the ranch, 38 days at Camp David, and four days at the Bush compound in Kennebunkport—a total of 96 days, or about 40 percent of his presidency, outside of Washington.
And when he got the August 4 PDB he stayed on vacation. Something to keep in mind when people bitch about Obama playing golf.

You might think dire warnings of an imminent terrorist attack might've made Bush break his vacation short, but he only did that for something really important: rushing back to DC "to sign a bill that could restore [Terri] Schiavo's feeding tube."
posted by kirkaracha at 12:21 PM on December 11, 2016 [69 favorites]


As Craig Murray factually points out, "in 10 years not one of the tens of thousands of documents WikiLeaks has released has had its authenticity successfully challenged."

That's factually irrelevant to the authenticity of Wikileaks' claims regarding how it obtains those documents.
posted by holgate at 12:22 PM on December 11, 2016 [13 favorites]


I'm still stuck on who is claiming that Bernie Sanders is in league with the Russians. Because I'm not a big fan of Bernie Sanders, but that suggestion strikes me as totally preposterous. And it's not something I've heard from anyone, which is not to deny that there could be someone, somewhere who has said it.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 12:23 PM on December 11, 2016 [9 favorites]


Sander was accused of 'honeymooning in the Soviet Union' on CNN. Not sure if any Dems picked up on it.
posted by Coda Tronca at 12:23 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Republicans in Congress prepare obscure tactic to gut Obama regulations

Twenty years ago, Newt Gingrich and allies pushing the self-styled Contract with America created an obscure but potent legislative weapon to help Republicans combat what they deemed to be out-of-control regulatory overreach in Washington.

...Republicans are readying an onslaught under what’s known asthe Congressional Review Act to cast aside a raft ofObama administration edicts, including rules designed to make it harder for US corporations to avoid taxes; environmental rules aimed at curbing earth-warming emissions; and sweeping changes to overtime regulations that were set to guarantee extra pay for an estimated 4 million Americans.

But, as a practical matter, for this to actually happen requires a particular set of circumstances: Both chambers of a new Congress need to be controlled by the same party; a newly elected president must be of the same party; and everyone agrees that rules issued by the previous White House occupant, from the opposite party, need to be tossed.

And, under time limits in the act, they have a period of just a few months in the new Congress to get it all done.

As Curtis Copeland, one of Washington's foremost experts on the CRA, put it, this is a legislative tool that salts the earth behind it.


welp.
posted by futz at 12:26 PM on December 11, 2016 [19 favorites]


Yeah, the allegation was that he visited the USSR back when it was the USSR, thereby showing that he was a fringe radical back in the day. It's not an allegation that he is currently working for the Russians. And it got surprisingly little traction, all things considered. In general, nobody talked much about Bernie's radical past, although I'm sure they would have if he'd received the nomination.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 12:26 PM on December 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


The Wikileaks story is not whether the emails are real. Nothing could matter less.

It's who gave them the hacked documents, and was that Russia.

And the even bigger story is why did Russia only give them the DNC and Podesta emails, when they apparently had RNC emails too.

Why did a state sponsored intelligence agency leak only one party's communications if not to influence the election? And did they coordinate with the Trump campaign or the Republican party?

Because if so, that's treason.
posted by T.D. Strange at 12:28 PM on December 11, 2016 [47 favorites]


...if not for the fact that Russia did, in fact, hack the DNC and give material to Wikileaks to help Trump's campaign.

His point is that the publicly available evidence that it was Russia is unconvincing, so you're just begging the question.
posted by Coventry at 12:33 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Trump's statements on almost anything even vaguely connected to Russian interests have been favorable to those interests in ways that are unprecedented breaks with US norms. You can decide if that makes him a "stooge" or not when added to the possibility of Russian interference in the election process and a cabinet and associates and family with ties to Russia.

Wikileaks released documents harming Clinton, and not Trump, thus acting, coincidentally or otherwise, to further Trump and Russian interests. There is some considerable belief they obtained those documents with Russian assistance. The Intercept helped wikileaks, and Greenwald is still spending time spreading dissension among Democrats,even though they have little real power in the US government at the moment, certainly not enough for McCarthyite actions. That this might be out of spite or simply ease of reach rather than direct Russian influence hardly makes it beneficial other than to those favoring his attitude towards Clinton supporters.

Stein is a virtual non-entity who enjoyed some brief contact with Putin and worked to harm Clinton's chances for the presidency, something people who supported Clinton disagreed with strongly, for reasons that should be obvious right now even aside from Russia.

Sanders harmed Clinton's chances with the drawn out and acrimonious primary, but that was his right as a candidate and had he won the same might have been said about Clinton. There is nothing really objectionable to Sanders outside of the desire for the primaries to have gone better, and I've personally not heard complaints about him being tied to Russia, though to be sure there were ill-founded complaints beyond that. Many of his supporters, however, were and continue to be aggressively seeking to make the party in their image or not have it work at all through whatever means necessary including minimizing Russian influence and threat to the world, a threat which the US has now seemingly sided with.

Categorizing the objection to these actors as McCarthyism is relying on an outdated standard of thinking about a non-communist Russia and a pro-Russian US government, that is close to the opposite of what McCarthyism actually was. Seeking to invalidate objections to actively trying to hurt Clinton's chances and install Trump as a president by using that outdated reference denies the actual harm of a Trump presidency and those actors' roles in helping secure one including how a Trump Putin relationship will affect the vulnerable here is the US and perhaps more damningly in the rest of the world for those who felt they could otherwise bask in the karma of the US having an election interfered with.

To what extent the Russians did interfere is unclear, the entirety of US intelligence agencies state they did, though they differ on the intent and extent in some areas and numerous other events and statement around the presidency have at the least make those claims seem likely in some regards. That Trump's presidency is a huge benefit for Russia is certainly hard to argue against, and that Putin and Trump both made it clear they were thinking along the same lines is also hard to deny. Paint the rest as you will, nonetheless its all dangerous in ways that could completely rework power alliances the world has depended on for many decades. So, yeah, worries about Greenwald feeling upset about being lumped with the those others doesn't really cause me enormous concern at the moment even as I don't think he was actually working for Putin in any direct fashion.

The stuff that keeps coming up causing division in the left isn't primarily from Clinton supporters, but those wanting to discredit Clinton and their support. Now that she's gone they should get over themselves and cut that shit out if they really do believe in working for unity, and that would be unity around any future Sandersesque or Clintonesque candidate, not for a party purity test one way or the other.
posted by gusottertrout at 12:33 PM on December 11, 2016 [37 favorites]


It's possible that some Democrats are too eager to red-bait and that there are serious questions about Russian interference in the election. Both can be true. Setting aside the question of who they got the leaked materials from, Wikileaks was not a disinterested party in the 2016 election. They have their own agenda that includes but does not stop at transparency.
posted by tonycpsu at 12:35 PM on December 11, 2016 [9 favorites]


Republicans are readying an onslaught under what’s known asthe Congressional Review Act to cast aside a raft ofObama administration edicts,

In the interest of reining in unjustified fear and focusing on justified fear, it is worth noting this can only apply to regulatory guidance issued since May 2016.
posted by corb at 12:36 PM on December 11, 2016 [10 favorites]


All of this is like that scene in The Wire where that dude who works for Marlowe punches a guy to death, and even the sociopathic sidekick is like *whoa dude*. It's like, I expected a Trump administration to take the country back to one of the vacants and dispose of it, but the SoS pick and the trashing of the CIA and everything else, it's like, *whoa don't punch his face off man--well, too late, I guess*

If Obama is working behind the scenes to stop this travesty, I say, Godspeed, Sir, Godspeed.
posted by angrycat at 12:38 PM on December 11, 2016 [6 favorites]


Is anyone working behind the scenes to stop this travesty? What could even be done??
posted by armacy at 12:41 PM on December 11, 2016 [6 favorites]


Is anyone working behind the scenes to stop this travesty? What could even be done??


Well, technically I posted this in the wrong thread, so I might as well repost it here:

The question is, are we scared enough, but not too scared, to act?

If you feel the system has quit you, have you considered quitting the system?

For example:

How many people can afford to walk out of their secure jobs on the 18th, leaving a note that they will not be back if the electoral college elects Trump, and show up at their state capitol to demonstrate in support of a sane decision on the 19th?

-vs-

Can a conscientious citizen afford not to?

As individual citizens, our main power is the power of "No." And exercising that power carries costs. The costs differs according to the individual, and the manner of the "No." But be assured, there are costs.

Collectively, the calculus changes a bit, but our main power is still the power of "No," and there are still costs.

Are we willing to bear the costs as individuals?
Will we band together and bear the costs together?
Or will we hide and hope others bear them for us?
posted by perspicio at 12:47 PM on December 11, 2016 [6 favorites]


What could even be done??

Voting in 2018 and 2020.
posted by Justinian at 12:48 PM on December 11, 2016 [11 favorites]


Coventry: His point is that the publicly available evidence that it was Russia is unconvincing, so you're just begging the question.

The ODNI, DHS, NSA, and now the CIA says it was Russia. Even the German BfV says it was Russia, as the same staging computer that was used to hack the DNC was also used to hack the German Parliament in 2015. The Russians sat on that hacked info for over a year before releasing it, ostensibly so it would be close to the German election so they might unseat Merkel. That hacked info was also released on wikileaks.

The likely difference in certainty is that organizations like the NSA or the DHS can only speak to the computer evidence here. Only the CIA would have human assets in place in Russia to confirm the direct links from the FSB & GRU, assets they wouldn't want to expose to other agencies, particularly with the NY office of the FBI apparently going rogue, plus an incoming administration hostile to the intelligence community.
posted by bluecore at 12:50 PM on December 11, 2016 [27 favorites]


zachlipton: I discussed Craig Murray's article a bit over here in the other thread. He's seriously claiming that these were insider leaks, not hacks, which basically requires believing that Podesta leaked his own emails.

It's quite plausible that an insider took his emails.
posted by Coventry at 12:50 PM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


What could even be done??

Voting in 2018 and 2020.


And helping to get out the vote.
Even if you are in a blue state. The more difference there is between the popular and the electoral vote, the better arguments there are for changing the system. (This applies for gerrymandered districts as well)
posted by mumimor at 12:51 PM on December 11, 2016 [10 favorites]


Justinian, you have more faith that our system of government can withstand a concerted assault from within its highest office for two years than I do.

I know of zero reasons to believe that our institutions will still be operating under Constitutional authority in 2018.
posted by perspicio at 12:52 PM on December 11, 2016 [13 favorites]


What is the motive for the CIA and other intelligence agencies to make up that Russia was responsible for the hacks?
posted by FJT at 12:56 PM on December 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


It's quite plausible that an insider took his emails.
posted by Coventry at 12:50 PM on December 11 [+] [!]


Seriously? What kind of insider would that be? And how would that happen?
Most people use laptops which they carry around with them. It's not like a stealthy Bernie-Bro could easily get to Podesta's keyboard. Abedin's mails were found because her husband is under criminal investigation, not because her laptop was lying about in Washington.
posted by mumimor at 12:59 PM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


FJT: They fear and despise Trump as much as we do.

mumimor: Unless you know Podesta managed his online life that way, it's unreasonable to dismiss Murray's claims out of hand as impossible. I use desktops all the time, and I don't often check the cables on them.
posted by Coventry at 1:04 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Remember how we got details of the transition team's plans from someone simply zooming in on a random press photo where the front page of a document was visible? Someone could easily just watch him type his password in, or set up a video camera that would record it, if all he's using is a password, without any keylogger or sophisticated knowledge of computers or surveillance being involved.
posted by XMLicious at 1:10 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


I find all this hair-splitting around "but maybe it wasn't Russians" ridiculous when Trump has well-documented ties to Russia in business, in his advisors, in his proposed Cabinet. It's not just the CIA throwing stuff out there; it's the CIA plus facts already known, statements Trump himself has made.

I don't give a shit about "communists" or reds, I care about a hostile, nuclear-armed, kleptocratic, oppressive nation being super-involved and chummy with the PEOTUS. They have a history of meddling in elections, there is zero reason to believe they wouldn't try to meddle in ours if they thought it worthwhile. In what universe is that not a thing we should worry about????

Yeah, the CIA is shitty, but when what they say matches up with other facts, it's ok to think maybe they know something. It won't compromise our liberal credentials to say that.
posted by emjaybee at 1:11 PM on December 11, 2016 [62 favorites]


It's quite plausible that an insider took his emails.

Except that's not how it happened.
posted by un petit cadeau at 1:12 PM on December 11, 2016 [11 favorites]


Isn't there a another post to discuss russia/hacking?
posted by futz at 1:13 PM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


We know precisely how they got access to his emails. It wasn't a video camera watching him type his password.

(er, what un petit cadeau said.)
posted by zachlipton at 1:14 PM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


Yeah. *Rolls eyes till they almost fall out of their sockets*

But even in that other post, this is just a major derail and in spite of falling for it, I hope the mods will end it soon
posted by mumimor at 1:15 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Except that's not how it happened.
precisely how they got access to his emails

Read the article. It says that among Podesta's emails they found phishing attempts from the same source as they believe to have been used in the DNC attack. It does not follow that he was phished that way.
posted by Coventry at 1:16 PM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


Derail from what, exactly? Seems pertinent, to me.
posted by Coventry at 1:18 PM on December 11, 2016


Someone being targeted by a spear phishing attack, demonstrated by the email appearing in the archive, is hardly conclusive evidence that the attack was successful. My antivirus software will find virus attachments in spam folders but it doesn't mean my computer is infected with that virus.
posted by XMLicious at 1:21 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


They fear and despise Trump as much as we do.

Hmm, I didn't know the CIA was staffed with so many women and POC.

But more seriously, that's possible. But my counter is wouldn't a paranoid/America First style presidency also be a boon to the CIA?
posted by FJT at 1:22 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


The Motherboard article, which goes into much more detail, is pretty clear that Podesta clicked the link and was successfully phished that way, and that the phishing email Podesta received is directly linked to the phishing emails that successfully lead to the compromises of other accounts like Colin Powell's and William Rinehart's, thanks to a bitly account that the hackers didn't set to private.

If you want to argue about attribution, actually linking the hack to the Russian Government, that seems much more reasonable than arguing this was all some kind of whistleblowing insider.
posted by zachlipton at 1:27 PM on December 11, 2016 [6 favorites]


Someone being targeted by a spear phishing attack, demonstrated by the email appearing in the archive, is hardly conclusive evidence that the attack was successful. My antivirus software will find virus attachments in spam folders but it doesn't mean my computer is infected with that virus.

However, we do know that the spear phishing link sent to Podesta was clicked on. Assuming Occam's Razor, the most likely explanation that fits what's come out so far is that Podesta's emails were obtained via these Russian spear phishing attacks, and not via some sort of insider operation, which we have absolutely no evidence for.

BTW, Podesta and other staffers would be difficult to target with a physical keylogger or cameras, considering that they have no fixed offices (they have to travel with the candidate) and conduct almost all of their business on laptops and smartphones.
posted by un petit cadeau at 1:29 PM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


But my counter is wouldn't a paranoid/America First style presidency also be a boon to the CIA?

whatever trump's agenda might gain them has to be balanced against the likelihood that he will out active intelligence assets by bragging about them publicly

"we have the best agents working as clerical staff at the Duma, just really tremendous spies."
posted by murphy slaw at 1:29 PM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


The problem is this, if you want to distrust US intelligence sources so completely as to deny them any credibility in what they say, fine, go ahead, but any president will be listening to those same sources, save for Trump, the guy who was actually elected. With even some major Republicans questioning Russia's role in the election and interference generally, the belief in the US government as a whole, and in its western allies, is that Russia represents a real threat to western democracies. Now maybe they're all wrong and Murray and Greenwald are right, in which case, you're in luck, Trump is just the guy you want to keep those intelligence services in line by ignoring them.

There really isn't much else to go on right now, so it's kinda a take your choice option. Either we, in general terms, accept the working of the government in this matter or we accept throwing the whole thing out. Trying to nuance the options to discredit just your least favorites is going to require a lot of info no one has access to, or you're relying on trust from opaque sources using the best estimates of all surrounding evidence one can find. If you're siding with Murray, what's your argument other than Murray said so? History? As the reference to 9/11 above suggests US intelligence was trying to inform and was ignored there, unless you don't want to believe that either. These hypotheticals extend indefinitely and have no absolutely clear answer, so be skeptical, that's fine, but doing so to the point of permanent inaction only benefits those who would abuse power.
posted by gusottertrout at 1:30 PM on December 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


Someone being targeted by a spear phishing attack, demonstrated by the email appearing in the archive, is hardly conclusive evidence that the attack was successful. My antivirus software will find virus attachments in spam folders but it doesn't mean my computer is infected with that virus.

Multiple people being targeted by the same spear phishing attack, which we know came from the same Bitly account, when we know that several of them fell for it, and we know that archives of their emails later turned up on various websites, is fairly darn good evidence that they were all phished, and phished by the same or closely connected hackers, yes.
posted by zachlipton at 1:31 PM on December 11, 2016 [11 favorites]


To put it another way, we don't need to jump to video camera theories when we can just ask someone: "hey, did you get this email and click on it and put in your password?" and they say "yeah I totally did that thing, was that wrong?" And we know that happened in at least a couple of cases. And thanks to the failure to secure their Bitly account, we know that the same person or group of people, state-backed or not, sent similar phishing emails to "almost 4,000 individuals from October 2015 to May 2016."

None of that conclusively points to Russia, but it does seem to rule out an insider leak as Murray claims according to any reasonable definition of the term.
posted by zachlipton at 1:39 PM on December 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


Thanks for posting the Motherboard article, Zach. The bit.ly data is new information to me. I'm still not convinced, but it's suggestive. Also, it led me to Thomas Rid's article, which has a lot of interesting stuff, including the (to me) new information that Guccifer leaked a document which he claimed was the DNC's opposition research on Trump. A lot of interesting reading there.
posted by Coventry at 1:47 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


What is more scary is that so many other democratic governments are falling one by one.
The UK is in disarray (with Russia as a very probable actor)
France may well fall next year (with Russia as a know financer of le Pen)
Germany is vulnerable.
The entire eastern part of Europe is now in mortal danger
Italy is in disarray - maybe of it's own undoing, though Berlusconi was known to be a Putin puppet.
Japan has its own problems and its own border conflicts with Russia.
South Korea is impeaching their president, with good reason.
I should go on but this is depressing me. Feel free to add on.

I don't want to be a scaremonger, actually I think all of this is the last death-throes of a global culture dependent and also profiting from fossil fuels and imperialism. As alternatives rise and gain power, the bad guys become increasingly desperate and do increasingly abhorrent and illegal stuff. They are dying out and they know it.
Anecdotically, I read today in a tabloid that a locally famous real-estate "mogul" (not so much) had mortgaged everything to the chimneys and eventually left nothing to his family. I expect the same to be literally true of Trump, but maybe more figuratively of people like Putin, Berlusconi and the Kochs. Their heirs will be rich enough, but the values and the world they imagined will be gone. It's obviously a bit scary to not know what will replace them, or what will happen during those violent death-throes. But there will be something very different out there.
posted by mumimor at 1:48 PM on December 11, 2016 [15 favorites]


we can just ask someone: "hey, did you get this email and click on it and put in your password?"

Has Podesta said publicly?
posted by Coventry at 1:48 PM on December 11, 2016


The problem is this, if you want to distrust US intelligence sources so completely as to deny them any credibility in what they say

What they say to presidents/elites/each other and what they say for public consumption are two totally different things. Nothing they say is transparent or without ulterior motive. That's why some of us are insistent on reserving judgement until we see the kind of legal action/evidence that seems pretty easily forthcoming when it comes to other hackers.
posted by Coda Tronca at 1:54 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


I haven't read this Murray article, I was only responding to the idea presented here that an insider being involved would of necessity require Podesta himself to have leaked his own emails. These spear phishing emails appearing in the archives are good evidence of the same actor having targeted the same group, but it's entirely plausible that they would have used more than one approach; more plausible than Podesta moving around and using laptops and phones being a successful measure that would prevent anyone but himself from having access to his account.

It also seems kind of unlikely to me that Podesta would have confessed to a VICE reporter that he was fooled by a phishing email, and so I would think that's just a narrative device used by the writer. I mean there aren't any quotes from Podesta in that article. (Or maybe there are bit.ly server logs showing it was clicked on? Still an odd thing to leave out of the article.)

In any case, though, for my part I'm only disagreeing with the apparent notion that there can't have been any insiders involved, rather than saying anything more general than that.
posted by XMLicious at 1:56 PM on December 11, 2016


The motherboard article does say the bit.ly records indicate it was clicked twice in March.
posted by Coventry at 1:59 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


If the “other hackers” are FSB employees inside Russia, then exactly what legal action do you expect Coda Tronca?

There isn’t going to be any, because there wouldn’t be any point.
posted by pharm at 2:01 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


The motherboard article does say the bit.ly records indicate it was clicked twice in March.

Well, yeah, my bad then; I suppose the attacker could have been testing his or her links, but that's a much stronger suggestion of Podesta being compromised by that particular method out of the thousands targeted the same way, if the bit.ly URL specific to him was definitely followed by someone.
posted by XMLicious at 2:07 PM on December 11, 2016


What they say to presidents/elites/each other and what they say for public consumption are two totally different things.

That's fine, but we're getting info on this from both Republicans and Democrats and, other than Trump and some of his team, there has been no denial I know of about the interference from any agency or member of government, there has only been some questions on the extent and the intent of the hacking. There are corresponding reports suggesting agreement with these accounts from outside sources, as linked above, but we aren't ever likely to have full evaluations of it all given the nature of security in intelligence agencies and government.

Right now there is the call for further investigation and full reports, which is the point of all this info we're discussing, not an end state, but one of strong evidence that requires examination. Trump won't do it, so expecting legal action on any foreign actors isn't going to bring much proof of anything, no matter how true, unless there is support for the examination of the evidence and at least some trust in some areas of government to make that happen. If even that level of trust can't exist, then we're pretty much screwed already in that accounting so to those people none of this will matter.
posted by gusottertrout at 2:08 PM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


The Motherboard article cites "a source close to the investigation into the hack" for the claim that he clicked on the link. We also have, because it was in the WikiLeaks dump, Podesta's email to campaign IT staff where he forwards the phishing email and is told that it is real (great work, team!). And we know that the link was clicked on twice during the relevant time period. And we know other people who received the same phishing email from the same source did fall for it and had emails hacked.

Given all this, not to mention the fact that the actual folks investigating the hack surely talked to Podesta and have Bitly logs showing exactly who clicked on the link and when, the case that Podesta was hacked through this phishing email seems pretty solid to me, and is likely more solid to those who gathered the evidence privately. And since we know that the same attackers, or a closely aligned group of attackers sharing accounts, targeted thousands of people with the same phishing attempts, it's hard to say that the attackers could have been "insiders," because nobody is simultaneously an insider at the DNC, Clinton campaign, Colin Powell, and dozens of other groups targeted by the same attackers over more than a year.

It is, of course, possible that his account was compromised by others during the same time period (see also the whole FSB vs GRU question).
posted by zachlipton at 2:13 PM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


If the “other hackers” are FSB employees inside Russia, then exactly what legal action do you expect Coda Tronca?

The US filed hacking charges against named state actors from China in 2014.
posted by Coda Tronca at 2:22 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


I love how Teen Vogue insults are like, "Go back to writing about acne treatments!"

I can have flawless skin AND slash the patriarchy, thx.
--@lkherman ("Managing editor at @wayup and @TeenVogue contributor.")
posted by zachlipton at 2:22 PM on December 11, 2016 [60 favorites]


And if they don’t know the individuals responsible within the FSB? What then?
posted by pharm at 2:30 PM on December 11, 2016


Then it sounds like they don't know who did it.
posted by Coda Tronca at 2:37 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


If Russia-the-state really did this, there won't be legal action. It's an act of war and the appropriate US response is military aggression.
posted by Coventry at 2:41 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Russia behind hack on German parliament, paper reports

...The paper quoted a high-ranking security official as saying: "There is a high plausibility that the files originated from Russia's cyberattack on the Bundestag in early 2015."

...FAS said security sources saw parallels between the German attack and the theft of messages from the server of the US Democratic Party - also published by WikiLeaks...

...Fears were expressed Sunday that Germany's 2017 federal election and three regional elections could be subjected to manipulative attempts by cyberoperators.

posted by futz at 2:42 PM on December 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


If Russia-the-state really did this, there won't be legal action. It's an act of war and the appropriate US response is military aggression.

lolwut.

What would you propose? Provoking a conflict that makes sure that a tampered election is the last election anywhere until the ants finish the Classical tech tree?

There's no limited retaliatory expedition possible against Russia.

Any sane response would have to be severe international economic and political sanctions. Pariah status. Not 'military aggression.'
posted by snuffleupagus at 2:49 PM on December 11, 2016 [31 favorites]


Then it sounds like they don't know who did it.

This is stupid. The CIA doesn't need the exact identity of Russian agents to trace the attack back to Russian controlled servers.
posted by T.D. Strange at 2:55 PM on December 11, 2016 [22 favorites]


Didn't the White House threaten hacking retaliation or countermeasures a few months ago?
posted by thelonius at 2:59 PM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Whatever retaliation they contemplated has to go down before Jan 20th.
posted by T.D. Strange at 3:09 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


France may well fall next year (with Russia as a know financer of le Pen)

It's overwhelmingly likely that France will be aligned with Putin's Russia after the next election; both Le Pen and Fillon are strongly pro-Putin. (Fillon's an old Gaullist, and his hostility to liberalism and idea of restoring “traditional values” meshes nicely with Putin's Caesaropapist autocracy.)
posted by acb at 3:09 PM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


Man stabs worshiper at Simi Valley mosque in hate crime, police allege
After officers arrived and separated the people fighting, they discovered that a man at the scene had been stabbed, Darough said.

“During their investigation, [officers] discovered a suspect had confronted a worshiper from the mosque, and after a verbal altercation, they began to fight,” Darough said. “During the fight, [the suspect] stabbed the victim.”
...
“We’re investigating whether or not this was instigated by [the victim’s] appearance and the association with the mosque,” Darough said. “We’re quite concerned that this occurred. We want to keep people of all faiths safe in the city.”
posted by zachlipton at 3:17 PM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]




The New Reality of TV: All Trump, All the Time

His cabinet vetting has been as much “The Bachelor” as “The Apprentice,” complete with luxurious backdrops (Trump Tower, Mr. Trump’s club in Bedminster, N.J.), public sniping among associates about the suitors and even a candlelit dinner, at Jean-Georges with the Secretary of State hopeful Mitt Romney.

But beyond a point, the presidency-as-reality-TV analogy breaks down. Reality shows have structure, cohesion. As a reality star, Mr. Trump had producers and editors to retrofit logic onto his decisions.

In an October feature in CineMontage, former “Apprentice” staffers recalled that Mr. Trump would often “fire” contestants for reasons having nothing to do with their performance. Jonathon Braun, a supervising editor, said, “Our first priority on every episode like that was to reverse-engineer the show to make it look like his judgment had some basis in reality.”

posted by futz at 3:26 PM on December 11, 2016 [36 favorites]


Washington Examiner Trump exploring legal options to give Ivanka, Kushner roles in his administration
President-elect Trump has asked his legal team to determine whether his eldest daughter Ivanka and her husband, Jared Kushner, can take on official roles in his administration.

"We're working that out right now," the incoming Republican president told Fox News' Chris Wallace in an interview aired Sunday.

"They're both very talented people [and] I would love to be able to have them involved," Trump said.[...]The billionaire is slated to hold a press conference next Thursday in which he will discuss the role his children will play in running his real estate empire once he takes office. An arrangement that would exclude Ivanka from the Trump Organization could signal that she will instead take on a role in his administration.
So what happened to the nepotism law? Is that just another norm that Trump plans to break?
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 3:31 PM on December 11, 2016 [18 favorites]


The Hill Former ambassador to Russia: Putin wanted 'revenge' against Clinton
Michael McFaul, who served as the U.S. ambassador to Russia from 2012 to 2014, said he thinks Russian President Vladimir Putin wanted to help Donald Trump win the presidency to hurt Clinton.

"Let's remember that Vladimir Putin thinks [Clinton] interfered in his election — the parliamentary election in December 2011 — and has said as much publicly, and I've heard him talk about it privately," McFaul said on NBC's "Meet the Press."
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 3:34 PM on December 11, 2016 [15 favorites]


The Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, has said he means to discuss with Donald Trump “various ways” to undo the Iran nuclear deal, after the president-elect moves into the White House next month.
posted by adamvasco at 3:47 PM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


Politico ‘It’s Like a Powder Keg That’s Going to Explode’
Eisen and Painter happen to be the two ethicists who are actively working to shape the outcome of an election that most voters think has already been decided. For the #stillnevertrump faction, Eisen and Painter represent the last hope of persuading wobbly members of the Electoral College to vote against the president-elect when they convene on Dec. 19. Failing that, the two men are laying the groundwork for a case that Trump’s sprawling financial arrangements—real estate investments, hotels, golf courses and product licenses spread across the U.S. and at least 20 other countries—will inevitably lead him into scandal or worse once he takes office. Trump is set to hold a news conference Dec. 15 in New York to provide more detail on his future financial plans, but the two men have no expectation that Trump will take their advice and sell off his entire business enterprise and put the proceeds into a “blind trust” with no control or knowledge over where the money goes.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 3:54 PM on December 11, 2016 [10 favorites]


Shareblue Kellyanne Conway says Trump is “going to put his own people” in the intelligence community
During an interview on Face the Nation, Donald Trump's senior advisor Kellyanne Conway insisted that the President-elect "absolutely respects the intelligence community," even though he refuses to accept their consensus view of Russian interference in the election. She then added chillingly: "He's made very clear he's going to put his own people in there as well"[...]

Trump himself asserted that he does not need intelligence briefings, claiming it is because he is “like a smart person,” but Conway gives away the real reason he is avoiding them: They are providing information he does not want to hear. So, instead, Trump will install people who deliver him “intelligence” more to his liking.
This is totes normal. No reason to be alarmed at all.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:02 PM on December 11, 2016 [39 favorites]


Illuminating, if depressing and predictable: What I saw at the Michigan recount

Guys, I've been trying my best to keep up hope here but I don't see how we can win this. And by 'win this' I mean, maintain anything that looks like a functional democracy in this country.

The left is disintegrating, it's evident in this very thread and elsewhere on Metafilter. Yeats was never more apt than he is right now: the best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity.

Meanwhile the right has learned that their approach -- obstruction and bullying, backed by bald-faced lies and orders of magnitude more money than the left can (or care to) pour into the process -- just works. It works, reliably, at every level and in every place they've employed it. It worked for six years under Obama, it gave Trump the presidency, and it shut down the recount effort as demonstrated above. The right is not going to stop doing this. Why would they? It just works, and they've got the patience and the deep pockets to keep doing it indefinitely.

And this is why the left is doomed, because we're not willing to play the game in this way. "When they go low, we go high" -- sure. That sounds amazing, and I was right there with all of you during the DNC, applauding and favoriting and exhilarating and feeling like part of something meaningful. But going low provably makes things happen, and going high does not.

We're not willing to lie to ourselves and to the American people. We're not willing to summon the worst of human nature and wield it in pursuit of our own agenda. We're not willing to burn everything down and salt the ground and destroy the legacy of future generations. But the right is not only willing to do these things, they're doing it, all of it, right now. We don't know how to play this game at this level and we don't have the personal or political will to learn. And that's why we are losing, and we will inevitably lose.

I'm not suggesting that we do all of those same things. Even if we did, I don't think it would help -- the other side has a solid headstart and much more experience at playing this game, not to mention billions of dollars in their collective war chest. I'm saying that we are losing this game, and we are going to continue to lose this game, and this is why.
posted by Two unicycles and some duct tape at 4:03 PM on December 11, 2016 [38 favorites]


In terms of what to do about Russian interference in the election, this article from Crooks and Liars makes a case that military aggression is not the answer, nor is it actually the most important angle in this situation. There are all kinds of responses that can be taken short of war.

Karoli Kuns argues that from what we are seeing, the major thing that has to happen in this situation is for our elected officials to step up and do the damn job they were elected to do for once. Kuns offers a list of people they need to talk to under oath and proceed with a complete, non-partisan investigation of the election itself (keying on voting machines in five states) as well as people involved in the Republican presidential campaign to ascertain what, if any, evidence exists regarding influence by Russia. What is different about this article is the fact that the author proposes that there be consequences for Americans shown to have cooperated. People like Comey, Manafort, Stone and however far up that chain of command that knowledge of interference goes might face consequences if shown to have knowledge they failed to report.

Since it is clear that the Republican leadership seemingly has no interest in doing what the article suggests, we have to hope that the few legislators who have come out in favor of an investigation can manage to work around their leadershipand get that investigation.

Since I have wondered all along why the Republican leadership seems so accepting of the intelligence reports and yet so unwilling to address them officially, I have to wonder if the "collaborators" term mentioned by Kuns really does apply. I know these people are all party-first, but they should remember that without an independent country, they have no party to speak of, other than as a token. I've given up looking for patriots there, watching all that's happened since the election, but I'll settle for them just doing one job. They need to do this one job first, before they go about dismantling the U. S. government for their playtime entertainment.
posted by Silverstone at 4:04 PM on December 11, 2016 [11 favorites]


I think many of them are fine with being in the token ruling party of a client state.
posted by soren_lorensen at 4:11 PM on December 11, 2016 [6 favorites]


I think many of them are fine with being in the token ruling party of a client state.

It pays very, very well.
posted by T.D. Strange at 4:13 PM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


I'm not sure what to do with this photoshop I made of Pence with Lego hair.
posted by waninggibbon at 4:14 PM on December 11, 2016 [8 favorites]


The left is disintegrating, it's evident in this very thread and elsewhere on Metafilter. Yeats was never more apt than he is right now: the best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity.

It's because there is literally nothing practical that we can do at this point (on the national stage) that won't make the situation worse.
posted by Talez at 4:14 PM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


I will admit that, like many things the Trump administration has done, fucking with the CIA seems like a fairly baffling move. Are they sitting around somewhere saying "what's the one branch of the government which is completely devoid of accountability and scruples? Who doesn't have to answer to pissed of voters or party donors or really anyone? If someone did want to off the president, who might be able to do it and get away with it? Let's find those people and piss them off!"
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 4:17 PM on December 11, 2016 [24 favorites]


I will admit that, like many things the Trump administration has done, fucking with the CIA seems like a fairly baffling move. Are they sitting around somewhere saying "what's the one branch of the government which is completely devoid of accountability and scruples? Who doesn't have to answer to pissed of voters or party donors or really anyone? If someone did want to off the president, who might be able to do it and get away with it? Let's find those people and piss them off!"
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 4:17 PM on 12/11
[2 favorites +] [!]



Okay if that isn't eponysterical I don't know what is.
posted by ian1977 at 4:32 PM on December 11, 2016 [12 favorites]


I think many of them are fine with being in the token ruling party of a client state.

When you think about it, this makes absolutely no sense. Russia is seriously broken. Has no real prospects for rising again in the near future. The US is still the world's preeminent power. The economy is in good shape. Has a good lead internationally in some competitive industries. Culturally, still vitally important. Still has a huge, well-trained military which can go toe-to-toe with anyone. Dollar is a de facto global currency, especially because of oil.

It makes absolutely no sense for the US, even under a corrupt GOP, to be the client state of anyone. Much less the client state of the broken-down, dead empire of Russia. If this is the route the GOP & Trump are going, then they're even stupider and more venal than I could ever imagine.

When future historians discuss the Fall of the United States, I imagine most of them will have to laugh derisively for 5-10 minutes before they finally catch their breath and discuss how one political party (the supposedly "patriotic party"!) just gave the whole thing away to a much weaker country, and the other party just stood by and watched. And will mention it would have been more dignified to simply let barbarians in and sack the capital a few times.
posted by honestcoyote at 4:34 PM on December 11, 2016 [40 favorites]


Of course Trumo hates the CIA. They know where most of his bodies are buried across all his international dealings. They have power over him, so he must destroy them.

I fon't know when or where the spark will be that sets all this alight, but he's busier stacking the power kegs in the White House cellars with far more alacrity than Guy Fawkes ever managed.
posted by Devonian at 4:34 PM on December 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


The Republicans were good at this. They exploited a widespread belief in Obama's illegitimacy to win elections and maintain public support

Good at lying, cheating, bullying, pandering, and stereotyping. Yeah we could do that but it doesn't work that way.

Framing is what we have to learn, and we're either too ignorant, proud, or unconvinced to do it.
posted by petebest at 4:38 PM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


If this is the route the GOP & Trump are going, then they're even stupider and more venal than I could ever imagine.

. . . surprise?.
posted by petebest at 4:41 PM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


Yeah we could do that but it doesn't work that way.

The last 8 years proved it works exactly that way. Republicans are the strongest they've ever been, while Democrats are barely holding on as a national party. All on the strength of lies, blatant anti-reality and anti-science propaganda, demonization, racism, and now unabashed white-nationalism.
posted by T.D. Strange at 4:44 PM on December 11, 2016 [11 favorites]


I see this as essentially the only way to save the country: Democrats can stop Trump via the electoral college. But not how you think.

It’s never been tried, it might not work. It’s unthinkable, humiliating, awful, I wish she’d do it. Going on TV with Romney and asking for Trump electors to do their duty is probably the one and only way remaining to stop Trump from being inaugurated.
posted by gerryblog at 4:45 PM on December 11, 2016 [11 favorites]


he's going to put his own people in there

He probably knows a ton of rich dudes who have always wanted to be spies.
posted by EarBucket at 4:46 PM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


There is a big portion of the conservative movement that loves Putin and sees him as leader of the "western" world. To conservative eyes, Putin is the Great White Hope: anti-muslim, pro-oil, anti-gay, pro-billionaire, militarist white supremacist. Many conservatives see Europe as lost to Islam and too unsafe to visit. They would literally side with Russia over NATO. Conservatives won't deny the Russian help. They'll simply call it a mutually beneficial alliance. It won't bother them.
posted by T.D. Strange at 4:46 PM on December 11, 2016 [23 favorites]


I'd say the GOP is winning because they nakedly cheat. 10 years of suppression and bullshit and they win on a loss.

If they hadn't been allowed to fix the game they'd be losing hard across the board. We won the support of the people, they lost it, but we're living in their world for now.
posted by Slackermagee at 4:49 PM on December 11, 2016 [11 favorites]


The last 8 years proved it works exactly that way.

No, I mean a liberal/progressive agenda can't be pushed by lies, anti-science, outlawing people, etc. that work for T-Party/GOP/Fox News. It does work for them, yes, but we can't use those devices, that type of strategy.
posted by petebest at 4:51 PM on December 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


It pains me to realize that these election threads will soon become "presidential" threads.

*vomits into handbag*
posted by _Mona_ at 4:59 PM on December 11, 2016 [8 favorites]


Russia's head of foreign affairs: Trump continues to amaze
posted by T.D. Strange at 5:07 PM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


Senior editor, National Review...

@jaynordlinger:
Be clear: If a foreign intelligence operation had worked to elect the D, not the R, conservatives would talk of nothing else. Rightly.
posted by chris24 at 5:07 PM on December 11, 2016 [37 favorites]


No, NPR, You Have to Correct Trump's Lies When You Broadcast Them

Who needs Trump TV when you have "even the liberal" NPR catapulting the Trump propaganda?
posted by tonycpsu at 5:10 PM on December 11, 2016 [21 favorites]


Trump shuts down body created to protect Scottish environment

Trump Organisation executive vice-president George Sorial said: "Having successfully completed its scrutiny role for the construction of the championship golf course, Memag was dissolved.

"More than 95% of the site of special scientific interest (SSSI) remains untouched and the ecological diversity of the site remains intact."

Mr Sorial's claims are disputed by the Scottish Wildlife Trust, which says that a third of the SSSI has been damaged.

Memag last met in January 2013, six months after Trump International opened, and in December that year Aberdeenshire Council wrote to the Trump Organisation to remind it that the group remains a legal requirement.

The council did not receive a response and contacted the Trump Organisation again last week, when it was made it clear that Memag had been dissolved.


ALWAYS fucking someone over. Always.
posted by futz at 5:11 PM on December 11, 2016 [15 favorites]


In a year of huge disappointments for me NPR has been a big one. I can't and won't listen or support them any more.
posted by futz at 5:14 PM on December 11, 2016 [30 favorites]


Russia's head of foreign affairs: Trump continues to amaze
posted by T.D. Strange at 5:07 PM on December 11 [2 favorites −] Favorite added! [!]


They can't believe their luck
posted by mumimor at 5:23 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


And they are bragging about it.
posted by mumimor at 5:24 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


>What could even be done??

Voting in 2018 and 2020.


And, since more states are likely to institute onerous voting ID rules, donating to or volunteering with groups that help make sure people get their ID in order and get registered as early as possible.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 5:43 PM on December 11, 2016 [13 favorites]


So what are your thoughts on the January 6th, one Senator/one Rep disagrees with the results thing I've seen floating around?
posted by 922257033c4a0f3cecdbd819a46d626999d1af4a at 5:49 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


So what are your thoughts on the January 6th, one Senator/one Rep disagrees with the results thing I've seen floating around?

That seems entirely made up to me. I was trying to find any basis for it whatsoever. The Electoral College one above is real, though!
posted by gerryblog at 5:53 PM on December 11, 2016


Democrats can stop Trump via the electoral college. But not how you think.

Actually thought of this myself a couple of weeks ago. Never mentioned it here because it seemed too outlandish. But here we are. I hope the Clinton camp is considering it.
posted by honestcoyote at 5:57 PM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


And, since more states are likely to institute onerous voting ID rules, donating to or volunteering with groups that help make sure people get their ID in order and get registered as early as possible.

The states imposing these Jim Crow voting laws are also making these groups illegal.
posted by dirigibleman at 5:57 PM on December 11, 2016 [6 favorites]


dirigibleman, where can I read more about that?
posted by Coventry at 5:59 PM on December 11, 2016


Anybody have suggestions for what we can do to push forward the electoral college strategy to defeat Trump? I'd kiss the ground if we could elect Mittens or Kasich (or literally anyone else) instead of Trump. Hillary would probably personally need to get involved to convince her most ardent backers to switch sides. But it's the most realistic longshot we have at this point.
posted by zug at 5:59 PM on December 11, 2016 [13 favorites]


Actually thought of this myself a couple of weeks ago. Never mentioned it here because it seemed too outlandish. But here we are. I hope the Clinton camp is considering it.

I keep blathering on about it on Twitter because it is so elegant and workable, it just requires us to try something that hasn't been done before in a way that seems strange. But it's basically the very last brake before Trump takes the reigns, it's the one thing that can save us. I keep hoping, even as the date gets closer.
posted by gerryblog at 5:59 PM on December 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


Hillary would probably personally need to get involved to convince her most ardent backers to switch sides. But it's the most realistic longshot we have at this point.

I think Hillary would have to go on TV and say these are strange and historic times, but she is releasing her electors to vote for Romney and hope 38 Trump electors do their duty and do the same. If you can get Romney on TV with her, great. Then it's up to the electors in every state to face this one moment where a different, better path is still possible. It's a longshot, obviously, but it seems like game over for American democracy otherwise.
posted by gerryblog at 6:01 PM on December 11, 2016 [19 favorites]


I've kind of wondered if the GOP will let Trump be sworn in, then shortly after suddenly "discover" a major and shocking impeachable offense and get moving. At best in their eyes, they can play it as honorable, upstanding defense of the Republic, or if they have to they can take the short term hit on the scandal and hope voters' memories and outrage fade enough before 2018. They get Trump and his terrifying risks out of the picture, then have their guy Pence in office to do as he's told, but they have to wait until after Trump is inaugurated to move with it. McConnell is a ratbastard but I don't know if he's ratbastard enough to pull it off or who would work with him in the House to make it happen.
posted by dilettante at 6:06 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


From the link Trump shuts down body created to protect Scottish environment
When the billionaire was given permission to build his Aberdeenshire golf course in 2008, the deal included a commitment to fund a team of advisers to oversee the development of the course.

The arrangement was intended to prevent work at Trump International Golf Links from causing unnecessary damage to the area of special scientific interest it was built on.

However, it has now emerged that the Menie Environmental Management Advisory Group (Memag) has been dissolved despite plans to expand facilities at the course.
That sounds a lot like many other deals, including the Old Post Office and Mar-A-Lago, where he buys or leases property that come with commitments but then does not honor all of the commitments. From a BuzzFeed article on the Old Post Office
Trump won the bid largely because of two grand promises, three of the sources said.

Trump promised to employ the architect who had, over decades, championed the building’s careful, historic restoration. And he promised the involvement of a multibillion-dollar real estate investment firm with a rock-solid financial reputation.

After Trump’s team got the nod from the GSA, however, it reversed itself on both these promises.
I know this probably seems very minor in light of the fact that he is about to destroy our country but it really bothers me that he has spent his adult life making deals which he does not honor-- and he never seems to pay a price for that. He is a goddamn cheat.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:07 PM on December 11, 2016 [42 favorites]


Not fond of that WaPo electoral college idea, as much as I'd appreciate a sane person being pushed in. As it stands it's clear that the Republicans made this, that they've bowed down to the billionaires and embraced the white nationalists and sold us all out. Having a bunch of democratic electors wiggle around with backroom vote trading seems like it would help legitimize the right for the left, while simultaneously helping to further undermine our beleaguered electoral process.

luckily(?) this is pure speculation, because there's no way in hell the Dems actually try this.
posted by aspersioncast at 6:10 PM on December 11, 2016 [9 favorites]


JFC

@SopanDeb
Whoa. Potential Dep. Sec. of State John Bolton suggests on Fox alleged Russian hacks into RNC/DNC was false flag, committed by Obama admin:
Twitter link goes to a partial transcript from the show.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:15 PM on December 11, 2016 [13 favorites]


I've kind of wondered if the GOP will let Trump be sworn in, then shortly after suddenly "discover" a major and shocking impeachable offense and get moving.

This is by far the most likely scenario (which isn't very likely).

Or Trump figures out that he actually doesn't want to be President for very long (just long enough to make a splash) and arrangements and assurances are made regarding the discovery of a heretofore un-diagnosed medical condition some time in Spring/Fall of 2017 that gives resignation a fig leaf (magnanimous! brave!) and Pence enough time left in the term to get work done.
posted by snuffleupagus at 6:17 PM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Whoa. Potential Dep. Sec. of State John Bolton suggests on Fox alleged Russian hacks into RNC/DNC was false flag, committed by Obama admin

i think it's pretty obvious that the "John Bolton" entity is a Russian propaganda construct whose TV appearances can be easily accounted for with modern CGI techniques.
posted by indubitable at 6:18 PM on December 11, 2016 [11 favorites]


dirigibleman, where can I read more about that?

Apparenlty, "making it illegal" was an overstatement, but here is an article from 2012 on Florida's third party registration restrictions that drove the League of Women Voters and Rock the Vote out of the state. Here is a PDF from the Brennan Center for Justice on state restrictions on voter registration drives. It's somewhat out of date, as it is from before the gutting of the Voting Rights Act.
posted by dirigibleman at 6:19 PM on December 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


i think it's pretty obvious that the "John Bolton" entity is a Russian propaganda construct whose TV appearances can be easily accounted for with modern CGI techniques.

I thought he was just an angry walrus in a cheap suit with wire rimmed glasses.
posted by snuffleupagus at 6:19 PM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


I question that he wants to be President now. He doesn't want to live in the White House. He doesn't want to get daily intelligence briefings. He doesn't want to give up his businesses or his Executive Producer gig on The Apprentice. I think this Presidential job is not something he wants to be bothered with except he won and it is kind of fun to have people come crawling to his throne.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:20 PM on December 11, 2016 [37 favorites]


yeah, that's what they want you to believe
posted by indubitable at 6:20 PM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Thanks, dirigibleman.
posted by Coventry at 6:22 PM on December 11, 2016


I keep blathering on about [the suggestion for Clinton to urge her electors to support a Republican] on Twitter because it is so elegant and workable, it just requires us to try something that hasn't been done before in a way that seems strange.

It also would mean that Republicans as a polity would have won by yet again holding a gun to America's collective head, which would undoubtedly encourage them to continue doing so with even more gusto.

Even so, it would be better than a President Trump.
posted by XMLicious at 6:22 PM on December 11, 2016 [29 favorites]


It also would mean that Republicans as a polity would have won by yet again holding a gun to America's collective head, which would undoubtedly encourage them to continue doing so with even more gusto.

Don't conservatives have a word for this kind of thing? Does "moral hazard" ring a bell?
posted by indubitable at 6:26 PM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


Don't know what was on NBC News but it ticked the Orange One off

@realDonaldTrump Just watched @NBCNightlyNews - So biased, inaccurate and bad, point after point. Just can't get much worse, although @CNN is right up there!
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:33 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


@PoliticoCharlie When Bill Clinton was first elected governor there, there were 94 Democrats in the Arkansas House, and just 6 Republicans

So what the hell is going on?


The long tail of the Civil Rights Act, the rise of the Dixiecrat and the Southern Strategy, and the death of the southern Democrat.
posted by krinklyfig at 6:36 PM on December 11, 2016


Shareblue Kellyanne Conway says Trump is 'going to put his own people' in the intelligence community

Hey, it worked great for George W. Bush:
Kenneth Pollack, a former National Security Council expert on Iraq, whose book “The Threatening Storm” generally supported the use of force to remove Saddam Hussein, told me that what the Bush people did was “dismantle the existing filtering process that for fifty years had been preventing the policymakers from getting bad information. They created stovepipes to get the information they wanted directly to the top leadership. Their position is that the professional bureaucracy is deliberately and maliciously keeping information from them.
posted by kirkaracha at 6:40 PM on December 11, 2016 [9 favorites]


i think it's pretty obvious that the "John Bolton" entity is a Russian propaganda construct whose TV appearances can be easily accounted for with modern CGI techniques.

I remember him as the belligerent UN Ambassador under GW Bush. He would always go on and on about how the UN has no legitimacy, while the US was actively embroiled in an illegal invasion of Iraq and torturing prisoners of war.

*Sigh* It was a simpler time.
posted by krinklyfig at 6:45 PM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


I'd kiss the ground if we could elect Mittens or Kasich (or literally anyone else) instead of Trump.

I'd be delighted. It won't happen, for any number of reasons, but I'd be delighted. BUT.

Intersectionality wise, you've just pulled out all of the stops (and committed a Constitutionally legal but nevertheless really sketchy manuever) to elect someone who is going to do his best to destroy Roe v Wade. (IIRC, Romney is better on this than Kasich -- which doesn't say anything.)

Remember those lines in the sand? Remember how we weren't going to sell anyone out?

I'm not saying this because it's not preferable. I'm saying it because the election was last month and we're already seeing our coalition fracture.

And, yes: Roe is dead either way. (Maybe Griswald, too.) But so are unions, so is immigration reform, so is Obamacare and Social Security and any hope of police reform.

What will you sacrifice? Where is your line in the sand?

Be honest with yourself here. We all have priorities -- and I think we're all willing to sell each other out if it comes to that. But recognize what you're doing, and realize what you've decided you can sacrifice in exchange for the greater good.
posted by steady-state strawberry at 6:50 PM on December 11, 2016 [8 favorites]


This is what I was referring to about the January 6th thing.

Electoral College but then also January 6th
posted by 922257033c4a0f3cecdbd819a46d626999d1af4a at 6:51 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


1.) Electoral College meets Dec. 19. If Electors ignore #StateOfEmergency we're in, & Trump gets elected, we can stop him Jan. 6 in Congress
posted by 922257033c4a0f3cecdbd819a46d626999d1af4a at 6:52 PM on December 11, 2016


I think Hillary would have to go on TV and say these are strange and historic times, but she is releasing her electors to vote for Romney and hope 38 Trump electors do their duty and do the same. If you can get Romney on TV with her, great. Then it's up to the electors in every state to face this one moment where a different, better path is still possible. It's a longshot, obviously, but it seems like game over for American democracy otherwise.

If they could get GWB to show up too, so much the better.

Be honest with yourself here. We all have priorities -- and I think we're all willing to sell each other out if it comes to that. But recognize what you're doing, and realize what you've decided you can sacrifice in exchange for the greater good.

My perspective is that there are awful-but-fixable things, and there are unfixable things. Preventing unfixable things (like handing the nuclear codes to a thin-skinned incompetent beholden to a foreign power) takes priority.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 6:56 PM on December 11, 2016 [9 favorites]


Where is this January 6th thing in the Constitution?
posted by EarBucket at 6:57 PM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Intersectionality wise, you've just pulled out all of the stops (and committed a Constitutionally legal but nevertheless really sketchy manuever) to elect someone who is going to do his best to destroy Roe v Wade. (IIRC, Romney is better on this than Kasich -- which doesn't say anything.)


We aren't selling out anybody. Trump literally believes in every awful republican policy, plus he's completely unhinged. Trump is already going to destroy Roe v Wade. Finding somebody equally politically odious and not unhinged would be a huge step forward.
posted by zug at 6:58 PM on December 11, 2016 [16 favorites]




I think if there's any danger with the maneuver, it would be if it succeeds and we all breathe a huge sigh of relief because #NeverTrump and fail to properly fight his replacement when he needs to be fought. But I still can't see how that's a worse outcome than having somebody in office who is going to destroy every rule and norm that allows the core of our system to function.
posted by zug at 7:02 PM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


I think my personal lines in the sand are pretty irrelevant, because no matter what, they're going to plow over every single one of them with a bulldozer. Right now, it's just about keeping the maximum number of people alive and capable of fighting.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 7:02 PM on December 11, 2016 [19 favorites]


I think if there's any danger with the maneuver, it would be if it succeeds and we all breathe a huge sigh of relief because #NeverTrump and fail to properly fight his replacement when he needs to be fought. But I still can't see how that's a worse outcome than having somebody who is going to destroy every rule and norm that allows the core of our system to function in office.

This. I'm also concerned about DJT totally disregarding the rule of law in unprecedented ways. A different GOP president might try to do awful things that we hate, but he or she would respect SCOTUS rulings, etc.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 7:04 PM on December 11, 2016 [11 favorites]


Ah, so objections could be raised to specific states' votes, at whichever point both houses of Congress would have to vote to void those states' electoral votes from the total. We're really into magical thinking territory there.
posted by EarBucket at 7:05 PM on December 11, 2016


I cannot imagine a stupider idea than Clinton encouraging her electors to vote for Romney or some other token non-Trump republican. It would absolutely be the fastest way to finish killing the Democrats as a party. Every horrible right-wing idea implemented over the course of the next four years would be publicly sold as the work of the Good Bipartisan Republican that we all came together to agree on. For every citizen currently complaining that there's no difference between the parties, that the elites are all in cahoots, you'll have 10 citizens saying the same in the next federal election. This idea reads like a Swiftian parody of Democrat triangulation.
posted by Greg Nog at 7:07 PM on December 11, 2016 [34 favorites]


Three words: Trump Invades France

I'm about half-joking.
posted by petebest at 7:08 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


or every citizen currently complaining that there's no difference between the parties, that the elites are all in cahoots

There should be no difference between the parties, and they should be in cahoots, on existential matters of fundamental national stability and sovereignty.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 7:10 PM on December 11, 2016 [18 favorites]


Wait a second. Bolton said RNC and DNC hacks. The RNC says they weren't hacked.
posted by zachlipton at 7:13 PM on December 11, 2016 [12 favorites]


Just out of curiosity I looked up what ace reporter Matt Lauer was up to. No luck, he's still broadcasting apparently. Albeit with some kind of grizzled facial hair.

If the Today show’s Matt Lauer was trying to make up for what was widely criticized as a softball interview with Donald Trump two months before Election Day at NBC’s Commander-in-Chief forum, he could have picked a better opening question.

“Last year, when Time did not choose you as Person of the Year and chose Angela Merkel, you said, ‘Time magazine will never pick me as Person of the Year,’” Lauer opened his phone interview with the president-elect Wednesday morning. “They proved you wrong. How do feel about this?


I'm not gonna miss ya, Matt.
posted by petebest at 7:20 PM on December 11, 2016 [9 favorites]


Trump is already going to destroy Roe v Wade.

You're missing my point. What else are you willing to trade in?

Let's say we have a candidate who is going to be fine on everything -- except that they're planning to have a Muslim registry, and they're citing the Japanese internment camps as precident. Or that they're definitely going to implement racial profiling. Or eliminate Social Security and Medicare. Or purge the DOE of people who believe in climate change.

I'm well aware that a stable government is preferable to fascism, but what rails of our shaky liberal coalition are you willing to sacrifice here? I'm honestly ready to accept that Roe is dead -- but I would like to see those consequences be acknowledged.

Incidentally, no one here should ever insist that they have too many principles to vote for a Democratic candidate.
posted by steady-state strawberry at 7:20 PM on December 11, 2016 [6 favorites]


[DEC 9 campaigning for John Kennedy]

Trump began by speaking of how Louisiana first taught him that the system he won was rigged. "So I came down on a Friday night to a massive hangar. The place was absolutely -- thousands and thousands of people. I think 24,000, 25,000 people, and I left and I said, you know, I think I'm going to win this state and I won the state easily, right?" he said. "And then I checked on the delegates, and the delegates were -- I didn't have as many as people I beat, and then I said this system is crooked.”
He went on to praise Kennedy.

“Tomorrow we need you to go to the polls and send John Kennedy to the United States Senate, and that's why I'm down here. That's why I'm here. He's a great guy. He's a great guy. He's a good guy, No. 1, he's a good person. And if he doesn't win, I have got myself a problem in Washington because, you know, we have -- it's pretty close. It's pretty close. We need John in Washington not only for the vote. We need him for leadership and everything else, but if you go there, we're going to win.”

Trump dispelled rumors that he may not run for re-election, intimating that he would run again.

"Hey, I don't need your vote anymore, but I'm telling you I'm very good at that. I don't need your vote. Can you imagine that? Four years I'll need your vote.”


Has anyone analyzed trump's limited vocabulary and repeating of words? It is a very odd way to speak. We all know that the Chief Bloviator loves to hear himself speak but there is something else going on here. I have my own ideas that I will save for a later date.
posted by futz at 7:21 PM on December 11, 2016 [9 favorites]


Tape loop? Loose IC?
posted by petebest at 7:24 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


If we're positing last ditch extra-constitutional hail Marys, could we please settle on a better savior than Mitt Romney.

None of this will happen. He will take office. This is all fan fiction and bargaining.
posted by T.D. Strange at 7:34 PM on December 11, 2016 [13 favorites]


Okay, to defeat Trump.

27 of the electoral college members vote for Mike Pence. I realize that Pence is not someone anyone likes, but I still think Trump is exponentially worse with his kleptocracy, his white supremacy, his constant embarrassment of America.

Why Pence? The justification is that Trump has demonstrated that he is unfit for office. His vice president takes over. Second, you can state that Pence received the votes, the same votes as Trump. Trump/Trump didn't win the election (whatever win means if he doesn't get either popular vote of electoral college), Trump/Pence did.

Would Pence accept it? He won't have a choice whether to accept the electoral college votes.

Would the House of Representatives accept it? Probably no, although it might be they are split with some who will not vote Trump.

I believe this is the true Hamilton solution: Trump is unfit, his vice president should be the one.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 7:38 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Here's some better ideas than handing the not-Trump presidency to Pence or Romney to destroy the country anyway:

1. Democratic electors: Engage in lawful protest
The point is not to stop Trump from taking office, but to protest it, which is different from the appeal to Trump electors to be “faithless,” that is, to change their votes from Trump to Clinton. As Abraham Lincoln said of the Dred Scott case: The point is not to [resist the literal result - to return Dred Scott back then or keep Trump out of office now - but to do all that we can to discredit a law that allows an unconscionable result.

2. Challenge voter suppression
The intent is to question the integrity of the votes cast in the Electoral College, and the model is the aftermath of the 1876 election. The dispute over one electoral vote led to the Compromise of 1877, in which the Republican, Rutherford Hayes, got the White House, while Democrats, who supported Samuel Tilden, got an end to Reconstruction. How wonderful if Democrats let Trump take the White House in return for Merrick Garland getting on the Supreme Court. This is unlikely: It is the kind of hardball that the Left, unlike the Right and alt-Right, never has the nerve to engage in. Still, the Democrats should use the joint session this December to put these states on trial for suppression of the vote.

3. Make the gap too big to ignore
Third, Democrats must institute compulsory voting in California and New York, in particular, and in as many of the other 15 states that Clinton carried as possible. Indeed, universal voting—which states have the authority to require—is the only tool that Democrats have to dismantle not just the Electoral College but the other ways that the GOP is now able to rig the vote. One big state—California or New York—might be enough to set off a constitutional chain reaction. With compulsory voting in place in several states in the next presidential election, it is very likely that the Democrats would pile up a popular majority so immense that, under the weight of these new votes, the Electoral College, even as a half-credible institution, would simply collapse.

4. Create real majority rule—with a counter Constitution,
Let one part of America, at least, be a city on a hill. It is time to press for a country that operates under two different kinds of constitutions, and see which of them prevails.
posted by T.D. Strange at 7:46 PM on December 11, 2016 [27 favorites]


Trump's quotes pulled from this Politico article, Trump: China policy not working well.

“I fully understand the One China policy, but I don't know why we have to be bound by a One China policy,” Trump said in the interview, which aired on "Fox News Sunday."

“I don't want China dictating to me," Trump said.

"Why should some other nation be able to say I can't take a call? I think it actually would've been very disrespectful, to be honest with you, not taking it.”

China is “frankly not helping us at all with North Korea,” Trump said. “You have North Korea. You have nuclear weapons, and China could solve that problem, and they're not helping us at all.”
posted by gatorae at 7:48 PM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Once again, I am so profoundly grateful for Metafilter and the wealth of information curated here. I talked politics with my mom for the first time since the election today. She's fiercely pro-choice (I think it helps that she drove me to the clinic) and she said, "They're not really going to overturn Roe v Wade. They can't." And I (mostly) calmly spouted out facts, including the Texas heartbeat bill, indicating that yes, they really want to, and they will try, they're ALREADY trying. It got through. This one thing got through, and the seeds of doubt about "Let's wait and see with him" were planted. We talked about his cabinet picks, and when I got to Betsy DeVos, she asked "Is that true? Or is that just a liberal attack." No, Ma, it's true, the proposed Secretary of Education literally hates public schools and thinks Christian education is the way to go. That got through, too. I hope those seeds of doubt bloom large in my mom.
posted by Ruki at 7:48 PM on December 11, 2016 [33 favorites]


Regarding Pence over Romney: Pence would make sense after they're sworn in, or in a situation where Trump voluntarily steps down. But otherwise I'm not sold. He's never been a serious presidential candidate and only seems to be on the ticket because Trump has so few friends in the party.

It seems better to tap someone who has already campaigned and given their pitch on the policies and issues they want to bring to the office if the electoral college is to make a case for a best candidate.

Also if Trump really is conspiring with Putin, it probably extends into his circle, and we don't know how far. Better to keep as much distance as possible.
posted by p3t3 at 7:51 PM on December 11, 2016 [6 favorites]


3. Make the gap too big to ignore
Third, Democrats must institute compulsory voting in California and New York, in particular, and in as many of the other 15 states that Clinton carried as possible. Indeed, universal voting—which states have the authority to require—is the only tool that Democrats have to dismantle not just the Electoral College but the other ways that the GOP is now able to rig the vote. One big state—California or New York—might be enough to set off a constitutional chain reaction. With compulsory voting in place in several states in the next presidential election, it is very likely that the Democrats would pile up a popular majority so immense that, under the weight of these new votes, the Electoral College, even as a half-credible institution, would simply collapse.
This might just work.
posted by monospace at 7:55 PM on December 11, 2016 [13 favorites]


how do you enforce compulsory voting?
posted by quonsar II: smock fishpants and the temple of foon at 7:57 PM on December 11, 2016


Australia does it with fines. Seems to work.
posted by Coventry at 7:58 PM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


how do you enforce compulsory voting?

You're sent a ticket in the mail, like running a red light. If you avail yourself of any service in your town or state, they match it up against the voter rolls. Don't vote? Fifty bucks. Plus court fees if you ignore it. Waived if you vote in the next municipal or state election or can prove economic hardship.
posted by Slap*Happy at 8:02 PM on December 11, 2016 [6 favorites]


With carrots and sticks.
posted by monospace at 8:02 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


I don't think the question is if compulsory voting can physically work, of course it can. The question is, is it constitutional? T.D. Strange, I note you say states have the power to compel voting, can you expand or give some cites?
posted by Chrysostom at 8:02 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


> Every horrible right-wing idea implemented over the course of the next four years would be publicly sold as the work of the Good Bipartisan Republican that we all came together to agree on.

We Americans can be stupid and forgetful of our history, but I find it difficult to believe we'll be sitting around in 2019 when the 2020 campaign is starting and be like "hey, why did the Democrats and Republicans come together to elect Mitt Romney? What was that all about? Was it Kanye or something?"
posted by tonycpsu at 8:04 PM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


The article mentions that it would be constitutional, similar to something like jury duty.
posted by monospace at 8:05 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


If we're positing last ditch extra-constitutional hail Marys, could we please settle on a better savior than Mitt Romney.

Am I missing something? What's extra-constitutional about electors changing their votes? Article II grants states control over the method of choosing electors "in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct" but not control over their actual votes. Per Wikipedia SCOTUS found that states can have laws requiring electors to pledge to vote for a certain candidate, and try to attach punishments for not keeping the pledge, but the validity of those punishments is in question, as is a state's ability to directly control the vote.

The Court ruled in favor of state laws requiring electors to pledge to vote for the winning candidate, as well as removing electors who refuse to pledge. As stated in the ruling, electors are acting as a functionary of the state, not the federal government. Therefore, states have the right to govern the process of choosing electors. The constitutionality of state laws punishing electors for actually casting a faithless vote, rather than refusing to pledge, has never been decided by the Supreme Court. Of course, who knows how often this text has changed in the last few weeks.
posted by XMLicious at 8:05 PM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


dirigibleman, the Florida laws which drove out the League of Women Voters were permanently enjoined by a Federal Court in Aug 2012. I haven't found any indication that they appealed.

The Brennan link is great! Highly relevant to my interests.
posted by Coventry at 8:07 PM on December 11, 2016




monospace: "The article mentions that it would be constitutional, similar to something like jury duty."

Shoot, I didn't pay enough attention. Thanks, monospace.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:10 PM on December 11, 2016


Mitt Romney is an old-line conservative, not a radical, who was a popular Gov in a very Blue state, more popular still in very Red states, and is a technocrat who believes in process and precedent.

I will take Mitt in a GODDAMN MINUTE over Pence or Ryan. I will hate him as my president, but I will at least accept him as my president. Trump? Pence? Ryan? Nuh-uh. Not My President. Not now, not ever. Fight. Resist. Remember.

Remember!

Hillary won.
posted by Slap*Happy at 8:10 PM on December 11, 2016 [37 favorites]


Oh great. A big change to U.S. broadcasting is coming — and it’s one Putin might admire. Rather clickbaity headline, but read on:
A radical change to that system is now coming — and it looks like one that Vladi­mir Putin and Qatar’s emir might well admire. An amendment quietly inserted into the annual National Defense Authorization Act by Republican House leaders would abolish the broadcasting board and place VOA, RFE/RL and other international news and information operations under the direct control of a chief executive appointed by the president. The new executive would hire and fire senior media personnel and manage their budgets.
The relative independence of US foreign broadcasting operations was one of our great strengths. Turning these broadcasters into a tool of the President is deeply alarming.
posted by zachlipton at 8:16 PM on December 11, 2016 [34 favorites]


“I fully understand the One China policy, but I don't know why we have to be bound by a One China policy,” Trump said in the interview, which aired on "Fox News Sunday."

I hate to say it, but in previous instances when Trump has "talked tough", he pretty much folded like a chair: With Carrier he promised heavy penalties if the 2,000 jobs moved to Mexico. They ended up with 800 or so jobs staying and gave Carrier a bunch of tax credits. With Trump University, he boasted he never lost a case and ended up settling for $25 million.

I think with China, he's signaling he's willing to drop or reduce US support of Taiwan in exchange for something from China. There's simply no other reason why he would be talking this much about the One China Policy. He's just fattening Taiwan up for one of his "great deals". It doesn't make sense for him to say NATO, Japan, and South Korea are freeloaders and also leaving the Russian sphere alone, yet then be adamant about Taiwan's defense.
posted by FJT at 8:17 PM on December 11, 2016 [11 favorites]


Hillary won.

I mean, I don't think this is helpful, because she didn't win. Not under any of the rules that make people presidents. Trump being POTUS is awful and scary, and I hope that the electors vote Pence or Romney. But Hillary didn't win.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 8:18 PM on December 11, 2016 [14 favorites]


China flies nuclear bomber over South China Sea to 'send a message' to Donald Trump

McKittrick: See that sign up there. "Defcon." That indicates our current defense condition. It should read "Defcon 5," which means peace. It's still on 4 because of that little stunt you pulled. Actually, if we hadn't caught it in time, it might have gone to Defcon 1. You know what that means, David?

David Lightman: No. What does that mean?

McKittrick: World War Three.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:18 PM on December 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


The relative independence of US foreign broadcasting operations was one of our great strengths. Turning these broadcasters into a tool of the President is deeply alarming.

Can we call it Gleichschaltung yet?
posted by monospace at 8:24 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


But Hillary didn't win.

She won the popular vote which is a hell of a lot more than Kasich can say about anything this year.
posted by Slackermagee at 8:24 PM on December 11, 2016 [13 favorites]


Soooo....the Hail Mary notion is to ask 232 electors to throw themselves on their swords as a means of swinging 37 other electors...

...instead of just swinging 37 electors.




Evens. Out. Fucking bankrupt. Edifice hollowed out, copper pipes sold as scrap.

Every day I struggle to tamp down on the impulse to shout, Goddamn it, people, either have enough spine to stand up in protest and be counted on the day the deed is done, or just shut up entirely and brace for the fucking crash!

Every. Fucking. Day.

Why? Because people don't want to hear it. They don't want to do it. Even at a moment like this.

But I guess I just said it.


Please tell me I'm wrong. Tell me at least some of you are planning to *gasp!* skip work for one fucking day to participate in a demonstration against an impending atrocity on the 19th that is fucking advertised to directly harm tens of millions of people and savage the core principles upon which our nation is founded.

Please convince me that we aren't a nation of bloodless patriots.
posted by perspicio at 8:27 PM on December 11, 2016 [13 favorites]


There is a big portion of the conservative movement that loves Putin and sees him as leader of the "western" world.
this is fine

A big change to U.S. broadcasting is coming — and it’s one Putin might admire.
i am okay with the events are unfolding currently

China flies nuclear bomber over South China Sea to 'send a message' to Donald Trump
that's okay, things are going to be okay
posted by entropicamericana at 8:28 PM on December 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


I'm well aware that a stable government is preferable to fascism, but what rails of our shaky liberal coalition are you willing to sacrifice here?

There's more than those factors, though—in his attempts to cancel the One China policy, Trump is effectively trying to reinstate the Chinese Civil War, isn't he? In the final phase of the war, with us as allies to the losing side, except now the opponents we're losing to have nuclear weapons and 1,000 times the GDP and industrial capacity.

(At least that will be the default until he uses those totally amazing fabulous negotiation skills that appear to have given up Crimea for free, because he had no idea what the hell was going on, to miraculously produce a better agreement than one China, despite re-negotiating the denouement and end of the Chinese Civil War from a drastically weaker position now.)

So in addition to "not oppressed under fascism" we're also playing for "not incinerated in a nuclear war".
posted by XMLicious at 8:29 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


*gasp!* skip work for one fucking day to participate in a demonstration against an impending atrocity

…a lot of people would lose their jobs for skipping work for "one fucking day". The last thing we need to be now is out of work.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 8:31 PM on December 11, 2016 [17 favorites]


Trump says Wall Street Journal doesn't "understand business"

"I read the Wall Street Journal the other day," he said in an interview with Fox News. "Honestly, their editorial board doesn't get it. I don't think they understand business."

Has the WSJ ever gone bankrupt?
posted by futz at 8:31 PM on December 11, 2016 [22 favorites]


a lot of people would lose their jobs for skipping work for "one fucking day"

...and a lot of us wouldn't.

As I've said before, the people at least risk should be out front, standing up for those who are less protected. Because that's what this country is supposed to be about.
posted by perspicio at 8:35 PM on December 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


But Hillary didn't win.

She won the popular vote


Yeah, personally I don't think he should be mentioned as president without noting he lost the popular vote bigly. Republicans spent 8 years delegitimizing a man who won a true landslide by 10 million votes, fuck if I'm going to treat Trump any better. The people spoke and chose someone else. A system designed to privilege rural slave states chose him, working as intended centuries after being implemented to reward racists. Constantly reminding people of it is perhaps a minor and immature tactic, but maybe it has a corrosive effect on his perceived legitimacy. Plus it bothers him and his supporters bigly, so even better.
posted by chris24 at 8:37 PM on December 11, 2016 [39 favorites]


I mean, I don't think this is helpful, because she didn't win. Not under any of the rules that make people presidents.

The weasels gerrymandered the Presidency. By any meaningful interpretation of Democracy, Hillary Won. Remember.
posted by Slap*Happy at 8:38 PM on December 11, 2016 [18 favorites]


""Honestly, their editorial board doesn't get it. I don't think they understand business."" "Has the WSJ ever gone bankrupt?"

No, but they were surprised by the West Coast 2002 longshoreman's lockout because they refuse, as a matter of principle, to have a labor-beat reporter, costing any subscribers who relied on them for up-to-date business news billions of dollars in surprise shipping delays including (this is true!) a drastic paperclip shortage.

I feel like that's probably not what Trump meant. But the WSJ is a terrible, terrible business paper because it's not interested in reporting what affects businesses; it's interested in advocating for capitalists, even if said advocacy means capitalists get fucked by labor actions.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 8:38 PM on December 11, 2016 [37 favorites]


But Hillary didn't win.

Clinton won the contest that Donald Trump, you, me and everyone else voted in last month, as ordinary citizens participating in the popular vote. It's only by sorting all those popular votes a certain perfectly legal and constitutionally required way that you end up with Trump as the winner. The special voters haven't had their special voting day yet, though.

I know it sounds like I'm in denial.
posted by emelenjr at 8:42 PM on December 11, 2016 [20 favorites]


What the successful outcome of a Dec 19 protest look like? Do the electors have any reason to care?
posted by Coventry at 8:43 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Soooo....the Hail Mary notion is to ask 232 electors to throw themselves on their swords as a means of swinging 37 other electors...

...instead of just swinging 37 electors.


A 269 to 232 result goes to the House, while a 270+ to whatever result does not, or at least isn't supposed to. Though at the point that any of these fairy tale plans happen, I think we're in full-on Constitutional crisis mode, so who the hell knows.
posted by tonycpsu at 8:44 PM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


that it would be constitutional, similar to something like jury duty

or the military draft, /cough
posted by Heywood Mogroot III at 8:45 PM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


i think the mandatory-universal-voting-via-state-law idea has legs. ima look into that.
posted by j_curiouser at 8:58 PM on December 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


Yeah I know there are plans/calls for protests on Dec. 19th, but other than registering unhappiness I can't see how they are supposed to actually effect the Electoral College Vote. Personally I'm pushing HARD this week to get Congress flooded with calls to encourage more Senators and Reps to maybe make statements against Russian interference, Trump, and keep THAT story in the news so maybe some Electors think again before they vote. I don't think this is LIKELY, but yanno, I'm ok with last-ditch efforts.
posted by threeturtles at 8:59 PM on December 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


What the successful outcome of a Dec 19 protest look like?

full-on Constitutional crisis mode

Bingo.

You know, for a while I was disappointed in how Obama has been handling this situation. But I see that I was looking at it wrong. He's doing exactly what he was elected to do. Exactly what the office demands of him.

He's not our savior. He's the president.

The people need to act. He's been saying this himself, for eight years now.

There is a remedy if the people act.
posted by perspicio at 9:01 PM on December 11, 2016 [30 favorites]


I will be home watching my kid but yes my husband will be protesting the 19th. I will be at another protest Inauguration Day. And I'm sure there will be others after that. I will be calling this week about investigating Russia interference. My conservative Reps and Sens might actually give a shit about that.

Today our church message was about the different kinds of social justice actions we can take (without mentioning parties or names) to protect the vulnerable. We know that will be almost our entire mission for at least four years because a lot of voices and a lot of help will be desperately needed.

I am just as frightened as all of you. I have to cry nearly every day. But America has amazing and courageous people in it as well as bad ones. And I love them enough to keep trying instead of just staying really drunk and waiting for the end. Possibly that is foolish and pointless but it's what I have to do.
posted by emjaybee at 9:02 PM on December 11, 2016 [15 favorites]


A 269 to 232 result goes to the House, while a 270+ to whatever result does not, or at least isn't supposed to. Though at the point that any of these fairy tale plans happen, I think we're in full-on Constitutional crisis mode, so who the hell knows.


It would be a political crisis but how is it a Constitutional crisis? The Constitution is perfectly clear what to do if the EC can't pick a President. It has happened two times before. I guess if they DO pick one and Congress says no, that's not who you were supposed to anoint, you'd have the real deal.
posted by thelonius at 9:02 PM on December 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


...according to the Kasich adviser (who spoke only under the condition that he not be named), Donald Jr. wanted to make him an offer nonetheless: Did he have any interest in being the most powerful vice president in history?

When Kasich’s adviser asked how this would be the case, Donald Jr. explained that his father’s vice president would be in charge of domestic and foreign policy.

Then what, the adviser asked, would Trump be in charge of?

“Making America great again” was the casual reply.
posted by kirkaracha at 9:05 PM on December 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


Not under any of the rules that make people presidents.

Those would be the rules that give electors free rein (and specific direction from Alexander fucking Hamilton) to not choose someone ruinous to the republic. If we're talking about norms, then clearly norms aren't working here, and haven't been working since 2000, it's just that we haven't quite caught to reckoning the ruinous consequences of the norms not working in 2000 because what followed in 2008 felt okay.
posted by holgate at 9:06 PM on December 11, 2016 [14 favorites]


And yes, seriously, the deep deep deep assumption of the fucking republic is that direct action is legitimate to save the fucking republic. "A republic, madam, if you can keep it."
posted by holgate at 9:08 PM on December 11, 2016 [11 favorites]


Why would protests induce electors to change their votes? Why would they care? They're not up for re-election.
posted by Coventry at 9:08 PM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


I guess if they DO pick one and Congress says no, that's not who you were supposed to anoint, you'd have the real deal.

Yeah, that's what I meant. Though thinking about it some more, I don't see why most of the GOP caucus wouldn't be thrilled to have Mitt, or Kasich. Anyone with an (R) after their name is going to be with the GOP vandals for most of what they want.
posted by tonycpsu at 9:09 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


In 2000 everyone acted like it would be an unimaginable disaster to actually follow the Constitution and have the House decide the election, if the Florida recounts couldn't be resolved or if Florida sent 2 opposing slates of electors or something like that. And the Supreme Court made it so. It was pathetic.
posted by thelonius at 9:14 PM on December 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Twitler
posted by chris24 at 9:20 PM on December 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


Let's say we have a candidate who is going to be fine on everything -- except that they're planning to have a Muslim registry, and they're citing the Japanese internment camps as precident. Or that they're definitely going to implement racial profiling. Or eliminate Social Security and Medicare. Or purge the DOE of people who believe in climate change.


Um, but that's not the actual decision in front of the presidential electors. I'm talking about the decision actually in front of the electors, not a made up scenario. Either Mittens or Kasich would be generally acceptable to republicans, better on muslims and climate change than Trump, and probably better on racial profiling. They are probably equally bad on SS/medicare. So that's a net benefit, without throwing anybody new under the bus.

More importantly, neither of them has repeatedly stated that we should be using nuclear weapons or bombing countries whose soldiers do not treat us with respect. There are some things more important than politics, and keeping nuclear weapons out of the hands of madmen is one of them. We're heading for completely uncharted waters if Trump takes office and keeps continuing the behaviors that got him there.
posted by zug at 9:23 PM on December 11, 2016 [12 favorites]


Democratic congressman from Connecticut.

@jahimes:
We're 5 wks from Inauguration & the President Elect is completely unhinged. The electoral college must do what it was designed for.
posted by chris24 at 9:48 PM on December 11, 2016 [37 favorites]


If Clinton released electors for, say, Romney it would be a good show of unity to make bipartisan appointments to cabinet as a show of good faith. This could be an understanding going in.
posted by mazola at 10:15 PM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


Half of Detroit votes may be ineligible for recount
One-third of precincts in Wayne County could be disqualified from an unprecedented statewide recount of presidential election results because of problems with ballots.

Michigan’s largest county voted overwhelmingly for Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton, but officials couldn’t reconcile vote totals for 610 of 1,680 precincts during a countywide canvass of vote results late last month.

Most of those are in heavily Democratic Detroit, where the number of ballots in precinct poll books did not match those of voting machine printout reports in 59 percent of precincts, 392 of 662.
Nearly 1.8 million people live in Wayne County; Trump carried the state by only 10,000 votes.

This whole fiasco is seriously un-fucking-believable.
posted by un petit cadeau at 10:16 PM on December 11, 2016 [44 favorites]


This law in Michigan is crazypants: if they can't reconcile the vote totals in a precinct perfectly, they just give up on a recount? My understand is that most of the counts are off by a ballot or two, and there are fairly reasonable explanations for that (the scanner was being weird so a card got scanned twice or something), but just saying "the numbers don't match, so I guess we'll give up" makes no sense.
posted by zachlipton at 10:26 PM on December 11, 2016 [10 favorites]


If Clinton released electors for, say, Romney it would be a good show of unity to make bipartisan appointments to cabinet as a show of good faith. This could be an understanding going in.

A president chosen in this unusual way could probably only ever be a caretaker. I don't think that would be the worst thing, either; we need some time to figure out a way to pull out of this death spiral of tribalism and distrust without every moment feeling like life or death.

It would be better than Trump for sure. Alas.
posted by gerryblog at 10:26 PM on December 11, 2016 [16 favorites]


Yup
posted by mazola at 10:34 PM on December 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


A Romney or Kasich would sure as shit know they don't have a mandate and would act accordingly.
posted by mazola at 10:36 PM on December 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


just saying "the numbers don't match, so I guess we'll give up" makes no sense.

It's a "fuck you" to urban precincts that, because they are busier, are more likely to have hiccups.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 10:37 PM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


This whole fiasco is seriously un-fucking-believable.

Except it is sort of believable. In a close election, any kind of scrutiny is going to expose why the county-based model of election administration wouldn't pass muster in any new democracy, which is why seasoned election monitors like the Carter Center throw their hands up at the American system. The result of close elections is unknowable if you need to look on a county/precinct level; we've known this since 2000.
posted by holgate at 10:41 PM on December 11, 2016 [6 favorites]


So, Schrödinger's Election, basically.
posted by monospace at 10:44 PM on December 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


An interesting tweetstorm from Matthew Vines, author of God and the Gay Christian (and a gay Christian himself) asking whatever happened to repentance. The money quote is: "If Trump can be a person of strong character without ever repenting of his sins, then seriously, what is the argument against gay people?"
posted by zachlipton at 10:52 PM on December 11, 2016 [28 favorites]


Remember!

Hillary won.


Remember, remember, the eighth of November.
posted by asteria at 11:05 PM on December 11, 2016 [6 favorites]


I question that he wants to be President now. He doesn't want to live in the White House. He doesn't want to get daily intelligence briefings. He doesn't want to give up his businesses or his Executive Producer gig on The Apprentice. I think this Presidential job is not something he wants to be bothered with except he won and it is kind of fun to have people come crawling to his throne. -- posted by Secret Life of Gravy

This. Why do I have this vision of Donald riding in a parade, with a tiara and a bouquet of roses, smiling and waving to the crowd?
That might explain things like not attending to the details of the peaceful transition of power, not divesting himself of possible financial conflicts of interest, releasing the damn tax returns, already....
Is he bought and paid for, ready to spend the next four years rubber-stamping legislation? Is he going to bow out and leave Pence in charge? Will there be a full-blown impeachment?

What I don't see is the hail-Mary pass to stop the inauguration. That sets a president for derailing later elections. Nope on that. But forcing him out of office when the powers-that-be can't fence him in -- that is a strong possibility.

... But according to the Kasich adviser (who spoke only under the condition that he not be named), Donald Jr. wanted to make him an offer nonetheless: Did he have any interest in being the most powerful vice president in history?
When Kasich’s adviser asked how this would be the case, Donald Jr. explained that his father’s vice president would be in charge of domestic and foreign policy.

Then what, the adviser asked, would Trump be in charge of?
“Making America great again” was the casual reply.
posted by kirkaracha, among others

posted by TrishaU at 11:06 PM on December 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


I've been sort of transfixed by the idea that I came across when I was doing Hamlet with my class that one huge allegorical aspect of the play is the anxiety about the successor to Queen Elizabeth.

It helps explain Hamlet's pissy attitude from the get-go. And Hamlet's whole, "and what a falling off, from this to this." That's one thing he's sort of obsessed with, that the guy who is now king is such a shitty ass king compared to Hamlet's dad.

Before I was like *get over who your mom's doing* and now I'm like *I FEEL YOU HAMY*

I don't like this thing in life where I suddenly relate to great literature. I mean it's cool, but I sort of envy the kids who think Lear should just get on Prozac and that would address every issue raised by the play.

In other news, there are fights in my young friend's high school in the restrooms between HRC and Trump supporters.

Also, there is an apparently increasingly "ironic" use of the swastika in high school, so we had to have A Talk about Things You Don't Do/Say, which I could tell annoyed him. God, teenagers.
posted by angrycat at 11:46 PM on December 11, 2016 [17 favorites]


Exxon Has Lost Over $1 Billion From Russian Sanctions

There is absolutely no conflict of interest between the new Secretary of State and his interaction with Russia. None. Nope.
posted by PenDevil at 12:14 AM on December 12, 2016 [38 favorites]


Yeah, but wait until it's John "False Flag" Bolton and Trump can use that to rant about the lying media who simply report on the utterly absurd number of leaks that come out of his administration.
posted by zachlipton at 12:22 AM on December 12, 2016




Regarding those Detroit votes not being counted, read the link that Two unicycles and some duct tape shared last night. It's no accident that these are the votes being thrown out.
posted by rabbitrabbit at 3:45 AM on December 12, 2016 [2 favorites]


@StephenKing:
Trump's proposed cabinet is the worst in American history: a motley crew of plunder-monkeys.
posted by chris24 at 4:21 AM on December 12, 2016 [22 favorites]


The Republicans are delivering America into Putin's hands

It shouldn’t be surprising that Vladimir Putin would want to interfere in US politics to advance Russia’s foreign policy goals – from curtailing Nato to ending sanctions over the conflict in Ukraine and preserving Bashar Assad’s regime in Syria. And as many critics of US foreign policy have noted, Washington has its own long history of meddling in foreign elections, including in Russia and its closest neighbors. Maybe the turnabout is fair play.

But what should surprise and disturb all Americans is that our political institutions, and above all the Republican party, are so vulnerable to Russian interference. The Republican party, traditionally associated with a hawkish stance toward Moscow, threw its support behind a presidential candidate who openly called on Russia to hack his opponent’s campaign.

According to CIA sources who spoke anonymously to the Washington Post, Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell told Obama and leading Democrats that he would regard any effort to release evidence of Russian interference before the election as partisan. In other words, he put his own party’s interest in electing Trump and gutting the welfare state ahead of the national interest.

posted by mumimor at 4:53 AM on December 12, 2016 [24 favorites]


In a new twist, Mr. Trump will meet on Monday with Carly Fiorina, the former Hewlett-Packard chief executive, to discuss the job of director of national intelligence, a senior transition official said… (NYT)
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 5:14 AM on December 12, 2016 [3 favorites]


Why would protests induce electors to change their votes? Why would they care? They're not up for re-election.

Electors in many states are people heavily involved with the party apparatus. If you want to influence them, you need to do so directly and tell them you will remember this vote.
posted by corb at 5:17 AM on December 12, 2016 [9 favorites]




@realDonaldTrump (real)
Can you imagine if the election results were the opposite and WE tried to play the Russia/CIA card. It would be called conspiracy theory! Unless you catch "hackers" in the act, it is very hard to determine who was doing the hacking. Why wasn't this brought up before election?
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 5:23 AM on December 12, 2016


Do the electors convene in one location, or do they cast from their respective states?
posted by Coventry at 5:23 AM on December 12, 2016


@realDonaldTrump (real)
Can you imagine if the election results were the opposite and WE tried to play the Russia/CIA card. It would be called conspiracy theory! Unless you catch "hackers" in the act, it is very hard to determine who was doing the hacking. Why wasn't this brought up before election?


If it was reversed, the Republicans would be insane as the National Review editor tweeted above and we'd be in danger of civil war. And it was brought up repeatedly before the election.

Oct. 7 - Joint Statement from the Department Of Homeland Security and Office of the Director of National Intelligence on Election Security
posted by chris24 at 5:26 AM on December 12, 2016 [5 favorites]


Coventry, they are in separate locations. Normally, each state's capital, I believe.
posted by Chrysostom at 5:30 AM on December 12, 2016


A Romney or Kasich would sure as shit know they don't have a mandate and would act accordingly.

There is absolutely no guarantee of this; the "well, obviously he doesn't have a mandate, and he's saying he wants to all come together, so.." idea was bandied about quite a bit in early 2001, when Bush was handed the presidency after a campaign about unifying America and stopping all this nation-state-building interventionism.

But once he was in office, he did not behave like a cautious functionary without a mandate; he started beating the Axis Of Evil drum about Iraq/Iran/NorthKorea early, then dragged us into an unnecessary war in Iraq, severely fucking up the Middle East. And eventually, of course, the administration tried to gut Medicare.

There's a solid chance that any got-in-through-a-wacky-scheme Republican president would rule the exact same way they would if they'd just straight-up won the popular vote.
posted by Greg Nog at 5:35 AM on December 12, 2016 [19 favorites]


Chris Arnade photographs the back row kids. He knew they could elect Trump.
Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, he said, “represented the front row” — the smartest students in class, destined to enjoy the money and status that came with silver-spoon success.

For what Arnade calls the “back-row kids,” the frustration, anger and, yes, humiliation had become overwhelming.
posted by corb at 5:36 AM on December 12, 2016 [6 favorites]


@realDonaldTrump (real)
Can you imagine if the election results were the opposite and WE tried to play the Russia/CIA card...


Also, this tweet isn't from Android. It's possible he dictated it, but also very possible it's a Kellyanne or some staffer tweet. The vast majority of his tweets have been Android since the election.
posted by chris24 at 5:36 AM on December 12, 2016


Can you imagine if the election results were the opposite and WE tried to play the Russia/CIA card.

Can you imagine if one of the candidates claimed the election would be rigged months beforehand and also after winning the election?
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 5:38 AM on December 12, 2016 [22 favorites]


Can you imagine if the election results were the opposite and WE tried to play the Russia/CIA card.

Can you imagine if a candidate actually asked Russia to hack the election?
posted by chris24 at 5:41 AM on December 12, 2016 [20 favorites]


the smartest students in class, destined to enjoy the money and status that came with silver-spoon success.

...who all moved out to the burbs and voted for Trump anyway.
posted by hangashore at 5:43 AM on December 12, 2016 [10 favorites]


The weirdest benchmark of Trump's tweets is that he tries to "cover" his worst tweets with other ones. Just after those other tweets, he posted about military costs being out of control. Does he think people don't know how to scroll down and read other tweets?
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 5:51 AM on December 12, 2016 [4 favorites]


Does he think people don't know how to scroll down and read other tweets?

Well it's worked many times before.
posted by Talez at 5:52 AM on December 12, 2016 [4 favorites]


Just after those other tweets, he posted about military costs being out of control. Does he think people don't know how to scroll down and read other tweets?

And just like that with Trump's tweet on the F-35, Lockheed's stock is down 3%. $2.3b loss in market cap. Lockheed is a member of the S&P500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average. He just cost millions of Americans money out of their retirement savings, 401ks, IRAs and pensions.
posted by chris24 at 5:57 AM on December 12, 2016 [22 favorites]


Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, he said, “represented the front row” — the smartest students in class, destined to enjoy the money and status that came with silver-spoon success.

A nice piece, corb, that speaks to an emotional force at play. But beyond that, fuck this bullshit. That the "back-row kids" believed this does not make it true. She has devoted her life to helping the less fortunate.
posted by perspicio at 6:03 AM on December 12, 2016 [34 favorites]


A nice piece, corb, that speaks to an emotional force at play. But beyond that, fuck this bullshit. That the "back-row kids" believed this does not make it true. She has devoted her life to helping the less privileged.

And the back row kids voted for her. She won the poor and lower middle class by a large margin. He should say white back row kids since that's what he means and who he values. The well-to-do, the actual people with silver spoons, voted for Trump.
posted by chris24 at 6:06 AM on December 12, 2016 [33 favorites]


And just like that with Trump's tweet on the F-35, Lockheed's stock is down 3%.

I find myself again wondering what shade of crimson my always-complaining-about-Obama defense contractor friends would turn had Hillary done this.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 6:06 AM on December 12, 2016 [6 favorites]


And just like that with Trump's tweet on the F-35, Lockheed's stock is down 3%. $2.3b loss in market cap. Lockheed is a member of the S&P500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average. He just cost millions of Americans money out of their retirement savings, 401ks, IRAs and pensions.

The military doesn't even want the F-35, and it's been a vastly over-budget boondoggle for a long time. I'm having difficulty finding the same sympathy you found, perhaps because I'm not enamored of the vast socialist defense contract industry.

If someone made a statement that caused Corrections Corporation of America stock to drop, would you still be aching for the shareholders?
posted by Radiophonic Oddity at 6:08 AM on December 12, 2016 [5 favorites]


> There's a solid chance that any got-in-through-a-wacky-scheme Republican president would rule the exact same way they would if they'd just straight-up won the popular vote.

Sure there is, and if we compare the range of outcomes to a hypothetical Mittens presidency to those of Trump based on what we've seen so far, I'm sure we can imagine scenarios where Romney's no better or worse. But can anyone honestly say that stopping Trump doesn't significantly improve our odds based on what we know about his record?
posted by tonycpsu at 6:09 AM on December 12, 2016 [4 favorites]


> If someone said something that caused Corrections Corporation of America stock to drop, would you still be aching for the shareholders?

If that "someone" was the President-elect of the United States using Twitter as a weapon of war against companies he wants to shake down? Abso-fucking-lutely.
posted by tonycpsu at 6:11 AM on December 12, 2016 [28 favorites]


The military doesn't even want the F-35, and it's been a vastly over-budget boondoggle for a long time. I'm having difficulty finding the same sympathy you found, though I'm not enamored of the vast socialist defense contract industry.

You can think the F-35 is not worthwhile and also think the President Elect tweeting to distract from scandal by damaging a public traded company owned by millions of everyday Americans isn't a good thing.
posted by chris24 at 6:11 AM on December 12, 2016 [28 favorites]


Guys even RuPaul
posted by Hypatia at 6:12 AM on December 12, 2016 [15 favorites]


If someone said something that caused Corrections Corporation of America stock to drop, would you still be aching for the shareholders?

I think it was more about the larger index # dropping as a result.
posted by petebest at 6:13 AM on December 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


I repeat myself, but I will take Lawful Evil over Chaotic Evil any day of the week.
posted by lydhre at 6:15 AM on December 12, 2016 [18 favorites]


A nice piece, corb, that speaks to an emotional force at play. But beyond that, fuck this bullshit. That the "back-row kids" believed this does not make it true. She has devoted her life to helping the less fortunate.

What the Trump voters want isn't help, fortunate or not. They want to dominate, exploit, and abuse. And that's what Trump promised.
posted by Pope Guilty at 6:16 AM on December 12, 2016 [23 favorites]


He should say white back row kids since that's what he means and who he values.

You know, I think his impulse to document this side of Americana is entirely respectable. But yes, due to his words, at least as portrayed in that article, at best I'm willing to give him the benefit of the doubt that that's not what he means, and that this is a case of unconscious racism/ethnocentrism.

As ridiculous as that may sound, given how stark and obvious the bias is when called out, I know from direct experience, and have had to accept, that racism internalized, like every other toxic element of our culture, is a deviously blinding characteristic.
posted by perspicio at 6:19 AM on December 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


Scott Lemieux, LGM: The Orange Devil’s Theory of the Bully Pulpit
This is a really smart point from Brian Beutler:
In the end, Bush’s Social Security privatization never got a vote in Congress. In the face of intense public and Democratic Party objections, Republicans shelved it and then tried to pretend it never happened. But that was not for lack of effort on the part of privatizers, including Bush himself, who barnstormed the country trying to secure popular support for the plan.

In other words, it was huge news.

Donald Trump, by contrast, is currently barnstorming the country congratulating himself on his victory. He campaigned against privatizing Medicare, and promised to replace Obamacare with “something terrific” that covered everyone. “You cannot let people die on the street, OK?” he famously said. It is unlikely, in other words, that he will make a big Medicare privatization sales pitch that commands daily media attention…
The canonical bully pulpit story involves the president persuading the public to support his policy views through the force of rhetoric. Outside of foreign policy when the country is about to go to war, there is essentially no evidence that this power exists. [...]

Trump, though, might be able to facilitate the passage of Ryan’s agenda simply by getting the press to focus on various shiny objects. One reason it’s absolutely ridiculous to assert that we should ignore the disastrous, nearly-policy free coverage of the 2016 campaign is that it’s not as if the press is suddenly about to start ignoring Trump’s reality show and start informing the public about what a Republican Congress is going to do to the country. [...]
posted by tonycpsu at 6:21 AM on December 12, 2016 [24 favorites]


If that "someone" was the President-elect of the United States using Twitter as a weapon of war against companies he wants to shake down? Abso-fucking-lutely.

It seems plausible that Trump wants to shake these companies down, but is there evidence? Is this like the Carrier shakedown that left them with $7 million in the end?
posted by Radiophonic Oddity at 6:23 AM on December 12, 2016


But can anyone honestly say that stopping Trump doesn't significantly improve our odds

That's correct, yes. Trump is 100% awful, and Romney would be somewhere between like 30% and 90% awful. If Democrats help elect Romney, they will gain the animosity of a huge part of their base for collaborating with the party that wants to outlaw abortion and destroy the last bits of the social safety net and allow wealth to flow unimpeded to the rich. (They will also continue to have the animosity of every Trump voter who saw his election as a giant "fuck you" to the political establishment, then saw that their vote was, in fact, meaningless.)

I don't think there would be any way the Democrat Party could ever recover from that, and we'd be stuck with basically a one-party system of Republican rule until whenever the left coalition is able to reform into The Socialist Realist Party or The Whig 2.0 Party or whatever they eventually rebrand as. In that time, we would lose massive amounts of the rights and safety nets that the federal government's been providing. I don't think that re-forming-of-a-coalition could happen in an effective and sellable-to-voters way by 2018's elections.
posted by Greg Nog at 6:27 AM on December 12, 2016 [13 favorites]


[Brexit derail deleted. Coda Tronca, cut it out.]
posted by taz (staff) at 6:27 AM on December 12, 2016 [4 favorites]


> It seems plausible that Trump wants to shake these companies down, but is there evidence? Is this like the Carrier shakedown that left them with $7 million in the end?

I'd say it's more of a base-appeasing move about wanting to be perceived as tough on the pork-barrel aspects of defense spending. Wait until the people in these exurban and rural districts learn how many of their neighbors jobs come from those planes.
posted by tonycpsu at 6:28 AM on December 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


Radiophonic Oddity it doesn't matter a bit what he wants to do.

That would for one imply that he has any fucking clue what he's doing, and isn't essentially an angry Markov chain in an ill-fitting suit, trained on the comments page. The PEOTUS tweets capriciously, and when he names companies the market seems to be reacting. Maybe it's correlation/causation fallacy. But he shouldn't be doing it at all.

This is not normal.
posted by aspersioncast at 6:29 AM on December 12, 2016 [17 favorites]


the back row kids voted for her. She won the poor and lower middle class by a large margin

When you look at the percentage breakdown of where people stand, it looks like more than 90% of America is in the back row, in terms of not making enough money to afford what were once known as the markers of a middle class lifestyle. So we really need to re evaluate where our class differentiation lies, because I don't think those can be fine tuned as easily anymore.

How people are reacting to their increasing lack of access to these things, in my view, often depends on their prior economic status - people who are finding themselves falling are reacting with much more anger than those who are finding themselves rising. But whether falling or rising, the overwhelming majority of Americans are not in the same socioeconomic class as Hillary Clinton.
posted by corb at 6:30 AM on December 12, 2016 [3 favorites]


But whether falling or rising, the overwhelming majority of Americans are not in the same socioeconomic class as Hillary Clinton.

Nor Donald Trump, so what does that matter?
posted by Pope Guilty at 6:31 AM on December 12, 2016 [9 favorites]


Nor Donald Trump, so what does that matter?

The metaphor I heard somewhere that's been sticking with me all election (possibly from Arnade, on a podcast somewhere?) is: the respectable Washington elite are like a beautiful, tasteful BMW being driven by someone Trump's voters hate; to vote for Donald Trump may not be a move that makes sense on any rational in-their-self-interest level, but is like watching some other rich guy key the BMW's door.
posted by Greg Nog at 6:36 AM on December 12, 2016 [15 favorites]


As this nightmare unfolds, I wonder if we could work towards somewhat separate threads in the future. In particular, Historical Consideration of Hillary is distinct from How do We (Americans) Organise and Resist Now which is very different from What are the Immediate Ramifications for the Rest of the World. As someone who is not in the USA, but nevertheless shaken to the core by this disaster, I would love some separation.
posted by stonepharisee at 6:40 AM on December 12, 2016 [3 favorites]


to vote for Donald Trump may not be a move that makes sense on any rational in-their-self-interest level, but is like watching some other rich guy key the BMW's door.

Except he's not keying the BMW, he's putting the BMW owner and some Bentley owners in his cabinet to help him steal from Ford owners.
posted by chris24 at 6:41 AM on December 12, 2016 [16 favorites]


Nor Donald Trump, so what does that matter?

But Trump himself walks this weirdly fine line, class wise - despite coming from inherited wealth! - of poor-guy-made-good. Someone said on one of these he reads as "high prole", in terms of class markers. Sure, he has gold plated everything, but he still tapes his tie down with Scotch tape. It's like the Beverly Hillbillies version of rich people. The fact that other rich people seem to hate Trump, to these guys only works to place him more on their level in a bizarre way.
posted by corb at 6:41 AM on December 12, 2016 [30 favorites]


people who are finding themselves falling are reacting with much more anger than those who are finding themselves rising.

This is true, but I think it needs to be stated that oftentimes these people see themselves falling because of their relative distance from the bottom, not their distance from the top. So if other groups are doing marginally better, the groups that think that they're 'falling' think it's bad for them - even if that would just put marginalized groups on the same level as the WWC. But if the rich get richer and marginal groups stay marginal, the WWC seems to think 'well, at least I'm better than those chumps'.

Class is always going to be a relative thing, but I think it might be helpful to try to change it to judge by distance from the top, not from the bottom.
posted by dinty_moore at 6:42 AM on December 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


How people are reacting to their increasing lack of access to these things, in my view, often depends on their prior economic status - people who are finding themselves falling are reacting with much more anger than those who are finding themselves rising. But whether falling or rising, the overwhelming majority of Americans are not in the same socioeconomic class as Hillary Clinton.


I'm doing my best to understand your point or purpose. Her life story is inspirational. It's a sick and demented faction that has tarred her as elitist, and continues to do so.
posted by perspicio at 6:42 AM on December 12, 2016 [30 favorites]


It's cute that Trump still thinks you can make X go away by saying "playing the X card"
posted by thelonius at 6:44 AM on December 12, 2016 [2 favorites]


And just like that with Trump's tweet on the F-35, Lockheed's stock is down 3%. $2.3b loss in market cap. Lockheed is a member of the S&P500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average. He just cost millions of Americans money out of their retirement savings, 401ks, IRAs and pensions.
- chris24
You're missing the bigger picture, chris24, which is that by this reasoning, the S&P 500 is up 4.7% since Trump's election, putting money in the retirement accounts of millions of Americans and Creating Value.
posted by indubitable at 6:46 AM on December 12, 2016 [3 favorites]


Boeing is our top exporter, and Lockheed's plan for recouping F-35 costs involve finding more countries willing to buy it. I imagine it makes it much more difficult to sell *anything* when the risk analysis includes the statement "President of United States says product is too expensive and may have personal vendetta against supplier."
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 6:47 AM on December 12, 2016 [8 favorites]


Her life story is inspirational. It's a sick and demented faction that has tarred her as elitist, and continues to do so.

It's really important here to understand I'm not talking about moral rectitude. In a less bad time, I'd think it was a fucking American tragedy that someone who pulled themselves up by their bootstraps so successfully that they catapaulted themselves into the top tier of American society such that they can give the impression of always having been there, was then brought down by that perception and success among people who would have every reason to empathize with her story.

She can be a member of the elite herself without being elitist. It's just where she currently stands, class-wise.
posted by corb at 6:55 AM on December 12, 2016 [11 favorites]


....as if this happens every election "We lost? Better play the Russia/CIA card!"
posted by thelonius at 6:56 AM on December 12, 2016 [4 favorites]


You're missing the bigger picture, chris24, which is that by this reasoning, the S&P 500 is up 4.7% since Trump's election, putting money in the retirement accounts of millions of Americans and Creating Value.

Stock markets go up and down. What they don't do is drop instantly due to the President tweeting attacks on public companies to distract from scandals.
posted by chris24 at 6:56 AM on December 12, 2016 [15 favorites]


One thing's for sure, there's going to be bi-partisan understanding of the power of government after this disaster.
posted by odinsdream at 6:58 AM on December 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


What they don't do it drop instantly due to the President tweeting attacks on public companies to distract from scandals.

Who cares? Like you said, stocks go up and down. Wait a week or two and get a different outcome. My point is, Donald Trump: Terrible for America, Great for My Bank Account. Trump 2020!
posted by indubitable at 7:00 AM on December 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


Who cares? Like you said, stocks go up and down. Wait a week or two and get a different outcome.

Yeah, and if you're a retired person who needs to sell to pay a medical bill on a day Trump decides to crash the S&P, or a single parent cashing out a 401k early to pay a tuition bill, tough luck.
posted by chris24 at 7:03 AM on December 12, 2016 [5 favorites]


It's really important here to understand I'm not talking about moral rectitude.

She can be a member of the elite herself without being elitist. It's just where she currently stands, class-wise.

Thank you for clarifying. It appears you have just been making an observation from a particular vantage point, not offering any value judgments or arguments.

In which case I say, it's a valid observation (which has been getting ample play elsewhere as well), but... *shrug* ...the back-row kids are misguided. They chose an anti-hero.

Have you any suggestions or insights on what to do about that?
posted by perspicio at 7:05 AM on December 12, 2016 [1 favorite]




Let me speak for myself: Neither is McConnell.
posted by perspicio at 7:09 AM on December 12, 2016 [49 favorites]


> That's correct, yes. Trump is 100% awful, and Romney would be somewhere between like 30% and 90% awful. If Democrats help elect Romney, they will gain the animosity of a huge part of their base for collaborating with the party that wants to outlaw abortion and destroy the last bits of the social safety net and allow wealth to flow unimpeded to the rich.

I don't think this follows. It's not like the party's base is going to forget the circumstances of what led them to support a not-Trump option. The people whose lives are directly improved by the 10%-70% difference in awfulness (by your estimate) between Trump and Romney are certainly going to understand.

Your argument, in essence, is that those people must suffer now in exchange for a hypothetical alleviation of suffering later when the Democratic party base rewards Democrats for sticking to their guns and not taking a half-measure (or a quarter-measure, or whatever a Romney-ish candidate might represent.) That may not be how you intend it, but if there's a chance that harm can be reduced now, I believe it must be reduced. We can deal with tomorrow tomorrow, and I find your logic that the base will revolt because Democrats did what they could do to stop Trump unconvincing.
posted by tonycpsu at 7:09 AM on December 12, 2016 [6 favorites]


Yeah, and if your a retired person who needs to sell to pay a medical bill on a day Trump decides to crash the S&P, or a single parent cashing out a 401k early to pay a tuition bill, tough luck.

If you're a disabled veteran or an orphan with brain cancer making a withdrawal to pay their medicals bills the day after Election Day, though, you're probably pretty stoked with Trump, because now you have 1.1% more money, clearly an unambiguous indication that Trump is good for America.
posted by indubitable at 7:10 AM on December 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


> She can be a member of the elite herself without being elitist. It's just where she currently stands, class-wise.

We really are in a post-truth society when we're being asked to accept the judgement of people who think Donald Trump is working for the common man while Hillary Clinton is just another elite.
posted by tonycpsu at 7:11 AM on December 12, 2016 [31 favorites]


I don't take that to be corb's point, tonycpsu. Yes, that argument has been made. No, I don't think that she's making it.

the back-row kids are misguided. They chose an anti-hero.

Expanding on my own comment:

The back-row kids are making a valid statement of their own. I believe it is narrow and steeped in low-minded self-interest. But that in itself reflects a failure to inculcate higher-minded values, which begs the point: their swath of Americana has fallen into decay.

Should we avert utter catastrophe, we must make common cause with them. They are, after all, our own brethren (and I'm not speaking racially) ... and we need to stand up for them just the same as we must for the much more chronically disenfranchised.
posted by perspicio at 7:17 AM on December 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


Speaking seriously, now, the drive the measure the goodness of any given government policy by how it affects some company's stock price is a terrible way to make decisions. Single payer government healthcare would probably hurt the stock prices of health insurers, but I'd still be massively in favor of putting it in place. Letting stock prices guide your every decision is basically ceding policymaking to the most powerful, most established corporations and the wealthy capitalists who benefit the most from them.
posted by indubitable at 7:19 AM on December 12, 2016 [8 favorites]


This is a really smart point from Brian Beutler:
In the end, Bush’s Social Security privatization never got a vote in Congress. In the face of intense public and Democratic Party objections, Republicans shelved it and then tried to pretend it never happened. But that was not for lack of effort on the part of privatizers, including Bush himself, who barnstormed the country trying to secure popular support for the plan.

In other words, it was huge news.

Donald Trump, by contrast, is currently barnstorming the country congratulating himself on his victory. He campaigned against privatizing Medicare, and promised to replace Obamacare with “something terrific” that covered everyone. “You cannot let people die on the street, OK?” he famously said. It is unlikely, in other words, that he will make a big Medicare privatization sales pitch that commands daily media attention…


Yes, a good point, and subtly underlined by a great choice of illustration!
posted by mumimor at 7:19 AM on December 12, 2016


> the drive the measure the goodness of any given government policy by how it affects some company's stock price is a terrible way to make decisions

This will be the third or fourth time this point has been made this morning:

It's not about the fact that the stock price went down, but how it went down. The right always talks about Big Government picking winners and losers. This is the future President of the United States attacking a company to accomplish a political objective. This. Is. Not. Okay.
posted by tonycpsu at 7:22 AM on December 12, 2016 [30 favorites]


You don't have to think stock market prices, especially day to day, are a great way to measure the well-being of the people to think that the President-elect shooting off his mouth causing stock market volatility is abnormal and shows harm.
posted by R343L at 7:23 AM on December 12, 2016 [16 favorites]


If you're a disabled veteran or an orphan with brain cancer making a withdrawal to pay their medicals bills the day after Election Day, though, you're probably pretty stoked with Trump, because now you have 1.1% more money, clearly an unambiguous indication that Trump is good for America.

Yes, on this particular day it's up since the election. The point I've repeatedly made is it's not always going to be today. And the market is not always going to be up. And even if it is up overall since election, if he tanks a stock, it's down from yesterday and people have lost money they wouldn't have otherwise.
posted by chris24 at 7:32 AM on December 12, 2016


They are, after all, our own brethren (and I'm not speaking racially) ... and we need to stand up for them just the same as we must for the much more chronically disenfranchised.

Why don't you go to them and say they need to start talking to the front row kids, and especially need to stop sending us pictures of our friends in gas chambers.
posted by maxsparber at 7:34 AM on December 12, 2016 [13 favorites]


Okay, here's the thing on the stock market: If the president can attack a company and mess with their stock prices - thereby messing with all kinds of people's retirement accounts, etc - he has one more gun to our heads. Sure, this time the price will rebound and anyone who doesn't need to sell this month will be fine, but he's illustrating that he could make a sustained attack which would permanently depress prices, and that he could make enough attacks to cause market instability. And he's illustrating that he can and will attack companies that cross him, or that he thinks cross him.

This is basically like seventies nuclear policy - give the other side the impression that you're an unstable madman so that they're scared because you might do anything.

That Republicans are not flipping out and doing everything necessary to put the brakes on shows what I've always figured about conservatives - they'd rather reign in hell than serve in heaven, and giving uncontrolled power to a right wing tyrant is just fine even if he crashes the world as long as they can rule from atop the rubble.
posted by Frowner at 7:35 AM on December 12, 2016 [59 favorites]


Why don't you go to them and say they need to start talking to the front row kids, and especially need to stop sending us pictures of our friends in gas chambers.

I agree with that approach, as one step among many.
posted by perspicio at 7:36 AM on December 12, 2016


Seriously, I'm sick of being told we need to talk to the people who hate us. I talk to them every single day. They're all over social media. And they respond to every attempt to engage with "cuck" and "libtard" and "Killary," and the worst of them respond with actual threats.

Stop telling us to engage without telling us how we might get anything other than sheer abuse as a response.

There was an American life this past week about an Australian woman who attempted to engage with serial sexual harassers. She spent weeks talking to them. The best result she got was one guy who she talked to for several hours. He promised to stop actually physically assaulting women, but would still catcall them and harass them in other ways.

So this is engagement. Hours and hours and hours of wasted effort and the best you can hope for is that they grudgingly say they will stop breaking the law, but nothing else will change.

Hooray for engagement. I've had enough of it, and I've had enough of it being dictated to me. Only 20 percent of the country voted for the monster. I'm going to talk to the remaining 80 percent. They don't assault me.
posted by maxsparber at 7:39 AM on December 12, 2016 [111 favorites]


That Republicans are not flipping out and doing everything necessary to put the brakes on shows what I've always figured about conservatives - they'd rather reign in hell than serve in heaven

Exactly. The rightwing freakout for Obama on Solyndra and the government "choosing winners" shows that except for hypocrisy, Republicans have no true beliefs.
posted by chris24 at 7:39 AM on December 12, 2016 [22 favorites]


We still have a month and a half to go before this maniac takes office and already multiple people I know and love have made unprompted "jokes" about quitting their jobs, liquidating their assets and enjoying themselves with what time we have left.
posted by The Card Cheat at 7:45 AM on December 12, 2016 [5 favorites]


Yes, this has certainly been a sieve through which nearly every Republican has fallen, leaving a handful of apparently principled right-wing politicians to speak out against the howling nightmare. Which is how I end up developing a measure of grudging respect for Joe Walsh, Rand Paul, Lindsey Graham... the surprises for me never stop. 2016. Year of what the actual fuck.
posted by prefpara at 7:47 AM on December 12, 2016 [14 favorites]


If there are any Republicans who have ever tried to pretend to be "libertarians" this right here is the litmus test for exactly how much shit they are talking. No libertarian--capital L or small l, should be taking any of this lying down. Not one.
posted by soren_lorensen at 7:57 AM on December 12, 2016 [24 favorites]


Don't you mean "year of what the fake fuck?"
posted by Rykey at 8:05 AM on December 12, 2016


Republicans have no true beliefs

i think "power is good when i have it and bad when anyone else does" is probably in there somewhere
posted by murphy slaw at 8:09 AM on December 12, 2016 [24 favorites]



We still have a month and a half to go before this maniac takes office and already multiple people I know and love have made unprompted "jokes" about quitting their jobs, liquidating their assets and enjoying themselves with what time we have left.


My father told me that if he thought we could get into Canada permanently, he would sell everything up and take my mother, my brother, me and my partner to Canada ASAP. That is not the type of statement he typically makes - he's usually an "it will be bad but not as bad as you're worrying about, so just buckle down" guy.
posted by Frowner at 8:14 AM on December 12, 2016 [11 favorites]



Hooray for engagement. I've had enough of it, and I've had enough of it being dictated to me. Only 20 percent of the country voted for the monster. I'm going to talk to the remaining 80 percent. They don't assault me.


I live in a city and just spent the weekend in New York, and it strikes me on a regular basis and really struck me while I was in NYC, that there's really no place that is less of a "bubble" than a large urban area. Anyone who thinks that I (white Canadian-American from the midwest via Toronto) have much in common, with an 80-year-old immigrant from Guangdong Province, a young Afro-Caribbean service worker, a couple Wall St. bros, and the children of Lower East Side Russian Jews needs to re-calibrate what they mean by "bubble." And yet, there we all were, waiting for a safe moment to jaywalk across 6th Ave together.

Any place where you never meet or talk to someone who is substantially different from you is a bubble. A large city is not that place. (Many rural areas are also not that place, to be sure. But I am pretty much done with insistence that I'm the one that needs to come out of my bubble when my bus ride in in the mornings features almost no one speaking my own native language.)
posted by soren_lorensen at 8:16 AM on December 12, 2016 [62 favorites]


My father told me that if he thought we could get into Canada permanently

Currently I have on my desk the paperwork needed to get myself a Canadian passport (I am a dual citizen but have lived in the US since I was 3), and the paperwork needed to secure Canadian citizenship registration for my son (he derives citizenship through me, despite being born in the US). Never in 40 years have I contemplated this before. I'm American as apple pie. I don't even remember Canada. I have no family left there. But I've done the research on what it will take to get myself, my son and my husband safely and legally into Canada. My inlaws were like, "Uhhhh could you sponsor us, too?" (Answer: yes, with certain stipulations.) My own parents also are keeping their Canadian bonafides in their back pockets (my dad is still a Canadian citizen, my mom would have to go through the same Permanent Resident application process as my husband would).
posted by soren_lorensen at 8:21 AM on December 12, 2016 [8 favorites]


My girlfriend's father is a decent fellow. But he's very opposed to Obamacare. Despite the fact that it gave his daughter healthcare for the first time in her adult life.

He lives in a far suburb of Minneapolis. He drives to and from work, listening to right wing radio. He's in Michele Bachmann's former district, and his house had surrounding houses with Trump signs. He does not participate in social media.

I lived downtown in an apartment building filled with immigrants and people of color. I edit a Jewish newspaper. I attend civic events with my neighbors, many of whom are Muslim refugees. I especially sought out challenging voices from women, people of color, etc. on Twitter, and my Facebook friends come from around the world and represent a wide variety of experiences and ethnicites.

I'm pretty sure he's the one in the bubble.
posted by maxsparber at 8:23 AM on December 12, 2016 [61 favorites]


Any place where you never meet or talk to someone who is substantially different from you is a bubble. A large city is not that place

Yeah but see, we aren't exposed to white factory workers and farmers so city folk are totally sheltered from the real merica and do not understand REAL NEEDS.

Also according to media: Literally every college campus = Oberlin.
posted by windbox at 8:26 AM on December 12, 2016 [19 favorites]


Yeah but see, we aren't exposed to white factory workers and farmers so city folk are totally sheltered from the real merica and do not understand REAL NEEDS.

If you a Minneapolitan, like I am, you can't avoid farmers. We're freakin obsessed with farmers. They come in and sell their stuff on weekends, and are feted at farm to table restaurants, and they have big events every year where they show up how they pick apples or build corn palaces, and the state fair is basically a celebration of farming, which is no surprise in a mill town. Hell, half of the University of Minnesota is called Moo U because of its focus on agricultural sciences.

MY GIRLFRIEND'S FAMILY BUSINESS IS A TREE FARM.
posted by maxsparber at 8:31 AM on December 12, 2016 [15 favorites]


(Turns off farm report on radio, tries to calm down.)
posted by maxsparber at 8:32 AM on December 12, 2016 [8 favorites]


> My father told me that if he thought we could get into Canada permanently, he would sell everything up and take my mother, my brother, me and my partner to Canada ASAP.

We live in Canada. If things really go south in a world where Russia and the U.S. are allies, I would look farther afield for safety.
posted by The Card Cheat at 8:32 AM on December 12, 2016 [12 favorites]


If I didn't have 3 small kids, I would absolutely be actively working on expatriation plans right now. Like, for real.
posted by odinsdream at 8:34 AM on December 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


Yeah but see, we aren't exposed to white factory workers and farmers so city folk are totally sheltered from the real merica and do not understand REAL NEEDS.

In a personal set of ironies, I started a government-funded job that is designed to help small-to-medium sized manufacturers right before the election.

I am also pretty much the definition of an urban elitist, according to the people who hate them.
posted by dinty_moore at 8:37 AM on December 12, 2016 [2 favorites]


I think to dismiss the current leaders' failure to lead being due to their lack of principle is to not grant them basic human dignity in taking them at their word. I don't actually believe republicans believe in nothing and they say they have beliefs. It is fair to ask them to stand up for their beliefs even while acting as if they cannot be trusted to do so.
posted by R343L at 8:39 AM on December 12, 2016 [3 favorites]


If I didn't have 3 small kids, I would absolutely be actively working on expatriation plans right now. Like, for real.

I have one small kid and I really want to move to Spain or Mexico. And I work remotely so I'd have a job.
posted by kirkaracha at 8:41 AM on December 12, 2016


we aren't exposed to white factory workers

I live in Pittsburgh so lolololol
posted by soren_lorensen at 8:44 AM on December 12, 2016 [11 favorites]


So, Gawker's @realrealdonaldt Twitter bot has apparently been shut down. Is there any other way of using a web browser to see whether Trump's tweets are coming from iOS or Android?
posted by contraption at 8:50 AM on December 12, 2016


@realrealdonaldtrump

Edit. Oops. Also suspended. Echofon Twitter client gives device.
posted by chris24 at 8:51 AM on December 12, 2016


> My father told me that if he thought we could get into Canada permanently, he would sell everything up and take my mother, my brother, me and my partner to Canada ASAP.

We live in Canada. If things really go south in a world where Russia and the U.S. are allies, I would look farther afield for safety.


Not to spoil your hopes, but I cannot think of a safe place to go during the Trump regime. Russia will be a bit better than it is today if they lift the sanctions, which they will. But that is all relative. Even a wealthier Russia isn't on my list of places to stay.
Australia is really far away from the US, but not so much from SE Asia, and also will be severely affected by global warming. Same with South Africa.

Europe is completely off because of impending wars and racial/religious unrest. As is the Middle East, Central Asia and East Asia. I thought Trump had economic interests in India that would protect South Asia, but given he's already flirting with giving Kashmir to Pakistan, that doesn't seem safe.

North, East, West and Central Africa are already unstable all by them selves, with China moving in at a stronger force than now, they might be ideal sites for proxy wars.

All of the Arctic is at risk, both because of global warming and because of the inevitable division of power between Russia and the US up there. (No more friendly arguments over Hans Island, dear Canadians..)

That leaves the Antarctic. Which may be a possibility for a few of us. But I'm certain McMurdo will be defunded because it's research, guys. And against God's law.
posted by mumimor at 8:52 AM on December 12, 2016 [13 favorites]


That's the one I'm talking about, it appears to be suspended.
posted by contraption at 8:52 AM on December 12, 2016




Well, that's a bit misleading. The first paragraph says it's only 10 electors, one of whom is Pelosi's daughter.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 8:57 AM on December 12, 2016


True, but it still is going to generate news - you don't usually hear a peep from the electors on anything.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:01 AM on December 12, 2016 [10 favorites]


Well, that's a bit misleading. The first paragraph says it's only 10 electors, one of whom is Pelosi's daughter.

Yeah, it's nine democrats and a never Trump guy trying to make the other electors see the light by getting them in a briefing where they might better see what kind of guy they're giving their votes too in Trump. Not a great odds maneuver, but what the hell.
posted by gusottertrout at 9:04 AM on December 12, 2016 [17 favorites]


I think the idea with going to Canada is that one is less likely to end up in a prison camp, facing legal discrimination as a GLBTQ person, etc. Not that one would be free from US wars or global warming. Also, Canadian healthcare being normal and available.

I've pretty much accepted the whole global warming/war thing; it's the "it will be legal to fire me for religious reasons" law that's impending, plus what is obviously the construction of a governmental blacklist in the sciences, plus the whole rest of it. And I think that's what my dad is thinking - not that things aren't going to be very bad in general everywhere, but that it would at least be possible to escape the suppression of dissent and state-led attacks on minorities that are probably coming down the pike. If everything is going to be terrible, I would at least like to have only the regular helping of terrible things, not the special queer-person helping.

It makes me feel a bit bad - all my life I've done various activist things. Nothing dramatic or unusual, but I'm sure my name is on a few lists because of friends and associates who are bigger fish. And I feel like that's worrying my parents now, which makes me regret it a little bit.
posted by Frowner at 9:05 AM on December 12, 2016 [20 favorites]


New Yorker: What Taiwan's Leader Sees in Donald Trump

On the surface, Tsai would seem an unlikely ally for Trump. A former World Trade Organization negotiator, she generally supports free trade and was a prominent backer of the Trans-Pacific Partnership. She favors robust American engagement along the Pacific Rim, a strong welfare state, and strict environmental protection. She is also temperamentally Trump’s opposite: a methodical, soft-spoken technocrat who is childless and unmarried, enjoys reading classical Chinese literature, and sometimes seems to shrink under a spotlight. But a land as small and vulnerable as Taiwan cannot afford to be picky about its allies—some of the smallest and most despotic regimes in the world (Swaziland’s, for instance) have received generous aid from Taiwan in exchange for diplomatic recognition and an occasional mention in speeches at the United Nations. By making a phone call to Trump, Tsai saw an opportunity to boost her domestic approval ratings while establishing a rapport with the next American President and, crucially, his hawkish and China-skeptic advisers. For her, geopolitics and Taiwan’s survival come first.

...

But during her campaign Tsai also spoke to economic and cultural themes that in some way echo Trump’s, minus the rhetoric of raw bigotry. Both politicians distrust China’s economic policies and strategic intentions. On the stump last year, Tsai argued that Taiwan had become too economically exposed to mainland China, enriching a politically connected élite at the expense of working people. (In tandem with its ever-present military threat, Beijing encourages broad economic ties with Taiwan as a way to peacefully lure the island back into the fold; the mainland is now Taiwan’s biggest trading partner.)

Unfettered trade with China, Tsai argued, had hollowed out Taiwan’s domestic industries. Manufacturing jobs had disappeared and had not been replaced with adequate employment. A sclerotic and aloof government in Taipei, she charged, was protecting corporate cronies who were too close to China, while ignoring the pocketbooks and dignity of normal Taiwanese.

posted by Apocryphon at 9:07 AM on December 12, 2016 [1 favorite]








If I didn't have 3 small kids, I would absolutely be actively working on expatriation plans right now. Like, for real.


I have two, and I have begin working on expatriation because economic conditions may make it my best option for supporting my family.

Owing to my ancestry, I have residency rights in a non-euro Schengen zone country, and could in theory work for a German company, collect a salary in euros, and spend it in crowns, saving a lot of money by renting a room in a Soviet era block so I can send the rest home to the US.

This isn't just a rhetorical stance. I'm trying to get the math right for this. The hard part will be that I'd be required to pass a test in a Slavic language. Duolingo, fail me not..
posted by ocschwar at 9:13 AM on December 12, 2016 [3 favorites]




This fucking Russia shit is freaking me out more than anything else.

Like almost everyone in the whole govt, current and upcoming, heard "Kneel Before Zod" and were like "you had me at "kneel!"
posted by Cookiebastard at 9:22 AM on December 12, 2016 [10 favorites]


Canada has universal health care and less expensive higher education (I know that Canadians are rightly pissed at how expensive it is, but it still does not hold a candle to US college tuition). If the US really does decide long-term to be a country where health care and education are available only to a select few (and fewer and fewer with every passing year), then I think anyone who can move to a place with fewer barriers to those vital human services should save themselves and vote with their feet.

And that goes double for members of marginalized communities. If I was a person of color, a Muslim, or a visible member of the LGBTQ+ community, I would have cashed in my Canadian citizenship, like, yesterday. I have the luxury of waiting around to see what happens only because I am white and in a straight-appearing marriage. But I'm still getting my papers in order.
posted by soren_lorensen at 9:24 AM on December 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


This fucking Russia shit is freaking me out more than anything else.

It should, because even if the electors rescue us next week, we're still stuck with an emerging Russian funded alt-right.
posted by ocschwar at 9:27 AM on December 12, 2016 [21 favorites]


If Fiorina is Director of National Intelligence, she can run it like she ran HP and wreck US intelligence forever.

We could also talk about that time when she delayed the vote on the HP-Compaq merger to to bribe/coerce Deutsche Bank into supporting the deal with the promise of future business, resulting in SEC and criminal investigations and a fine for the bank. Deutsche Bank seemingly being the only bank that's willing to work with Trump.
posted by zachlipton at 9:30 AM on December 12, 2016 [3 favorites]


It should, because even if the electors rescue us next week, we're still stuck with an emerging Russian funded alt-right.

You left out "world wide".
posted by gusottertrout at 9:30 AM on December 12, 2016 [12 favorites]


Democrats Have No One to Guide Them on Which Knife to Bring to the Gunfight
Donald Trump is about to become president, and Politico reports that Democrats have no response plan:
[...] In the words of one Democrat who remains a frequent television commentator, but who has noticed the ranks of prominent party surrogates shrinking as the number of talking points and centralized messaging memos wane, “People are afraid to go out there."
I don't want to fall into the trap of assuming that Trump is self-destructing -- a lot of us believed that much of the way through the campaign -- but he's never been across-the-board popular, and he's not becoming more so, the way most newly elected presidents do. This gives Democrats a little time. But not much, because even unpopular presidents can get things done. Democrats need a leader who understands that they weren't in great shape even before the leadership vacuum existed. However, any leader at all would help.
posted by tonycpsu at 9:33 AM on December 12, 2016 [18 favorites]


McConnell calling for bipartisan Congressional investigation of Russia hacking claims.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:33 AM on December 12, 2016 [10 favorites]


The trouble with Canada is that I'm old and don't have a professional job. If I were under forty with a professional degree I'd look very seriously at getting out. As it is, I think there's still the option of going back to China to teach - that would keep a roof over my head, I have a standard accent and I'm willing to work in an inland city. Even with deteriorating relations with China, I have a suitable resume and a work history there, and I'd work for cheap in one of the industrial cities.

That's a real question - should we actually try to leave? I've pretty much assumed that I'd have to ride it out here, but I think we actually could sell up, end up with a little money and work teaching English or writing in English elsewhere.
posted by Frowner at 9:34 AM on December 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


Oh boy, now there's shit floating around that Hossein Dehghan, the Iranian Minister of Defense, is threatening war if Trump fucks with Iran.
posted by Talez at 9:35 AM on December 12, 2016 [2 favorites]


McConnell calling for bipartisan Congressional investigation of Russia hacking claims.

Hey, folks, if I ever get murdered, please do whatever you can to have a Congressional committee try to solve it, because those guys are all really fucking awesome at investigating stuff.
posted by Etrigan at 9:36 AM on December 12, 2016 [21 favorites]


Oh god it was even worse than I imagined. "Fiorina had this to say about her meeting with Trump":
"First I want to say, he has really cool stuff in his office. All of these athletes have given him all this incredible memorabilia. I was particular [sic] taken by Shaq O'Neal shoe, which is huge. I guess it takes a chanpion to know a champion."
They apparently went on to discuss China as our most important adversary and hacking ("whether it's Chinese hacking or reported Russian hacking") and she praised his word and said it was an honor for her to be there.

Two months ago, Fiorina called for Trump to drop out of the race and now she's praising the stuff in his office:
Donald Trump does not represent me or my party,” she said in a Facebook post on Saturday. “I understand the responsibility of Republicans to support their nominee. Our nominee has weighty responsibilities as well. Donald Trump has manifestly failed in these responsibilities.”
posted by zachlipton at 9:36 AM on December 12, 2016 [8 favorites]


Donald Trump is employing an interesting spread of tactics to keep CEO's and political rivals inline.
posted by ZeusHumms at 9:42 AM on December 12, 2016 [2 favorites]


So, uh, get ready for more false flag watch: Carter Page went to Russia and now we have this report: U.S. government might have deliberately orchestrated cyberattacks to make it look as though they were coming from Russia, Carter Page says.

Page was skedaddled out of the Trump campaign after reports (broken by Yahoo News!) that he was meeting with top Putin aides inducing "Igor Diveykin. A former Russian security official, Diveykin now serves as deputy chief for internal policy and is believed by U.S. officials to have responsibility for intelligence collected by Russian agencies about the U.S. election, the Western intelligence source said."

Page isn't officially working for the transition anymore, but that's not stopping Sputnik from reporting that he's an advisor to Trump.
posted by zachlipton at 9:45 AM on December 12, 2016 [8 favorites]


So, uh, get ready for more false flag watch: Carter Page went to Russia and now we have this report: U.S. government might have deliberately orchestrated cyberattacks to make it look as though they were coming from Russia, Carter Page says.

So . . . they're saying that the CIA (or whoever) influenced the election so that Trump won? Shouldn't that also be investigated thoroughly?
posted by dinty_moore at 9:47 AM on December 12, 2016 [5 favorites]


I love all the false flag stuff. So Obama committed an impeachable offense by interfering in the election with hacks damaging to Clinton - the person he wanted to win - to preemptively frame Russia for Clinton's loss, a loss that was given a 1-20% chance by most people. Instead of, you know, interfering in the election to help Clinton to actually win.
posted by chris24 at 9:50 AM on December 12, 2016 [40 favorites]


Erik Loomis, LGM: How to Do Something
Don’t listen to what these people are saying. They exist to hear themselves and not accomplish anything. Follow the path of useful people. Such as these Bernie supporters who have just taken over the Democratic Party in Brevard County, Florida.
Bernie Sanders supporters have taken over the leadership of the Brevard County Democratic Executive Committee, pledging to work to turn the county’s political landscape from red to blue.

The new party chair is Stacey Patel of Satellite Beach, who trounced two opponents in committee elections this week. Patel was an elected Sanders delegate to the 2016 Democratic National Convention. [...]
Now, you may look at the last number and say that Democrats have no chance to win here. And you might be right. But to provide the most obvious rebuttal, Florida is a very purple state and driving greater turnout from Brevard County through an agenda that motivates people to be Democrats is something that could actually flip a statewide or presidential election. This is a big county and needs an active Democratic Party committee. Moreover, local races are not that hard to win. [...]

But the larger point is one I have made many, many times. If you think the Democratic Party sucks, and especially at the local level it often does, go take it over yourself. Do what these people in Brevard County are doing. This is how you fight fascism and articulate an alternative agenda that does not cuddle with corporations.
posted by tonycpsu at 9:50 AM on December 12, 2016 [38 favorites]




Former AIG CEO Maurice (Hank) Greenberg went upstairs in Trump Tower earlier this morning. He is currently being tried for fraud.
--@abbydphillip
posted by zachlipton at 9:59 AM on December 12, 2016 [8 favorites]


I've been trying to figure out since the election what one has to do and who one has to know to get involved in the county Democratic Committee here. The website still has shit from before the election. The Facebook and Twitter accounts are not much better. The events calendar is cryptic and largely empty. This is a huge Dem stronghold, I know shit is happening, but... where? When? With who? It's a complete mystery to an outsider. Which is probably the system working as intended, tbh.
posted by soren_lorensen at 10:00 AM on December 12, 2016 [7 favorites]


If you think the Democratic Party sucks, and especially at the local level it often does, go take it over yourself. Do what these people in Brevard County are doing.

Do you have any suggestions for people who live in a city/state that is already pretty much permanently blue? I want to do something, but working to elect progressive dems in my district in Brooklyn seems a bit fruitless? My state senator is awesome and councilman is also great. I think a lot of people are also clamoring to get involved at the local level here. I am down for the cause but want to be where there is need. At the moment I am trying to just give money to causes, but there must be more options.
posted by windbox at 10:04 AM on December 12, 2016 [8 favorites]


Bernie Sanders supporters have taken over the leadership of the Brevard County Democratic Executive Committee, pledging to work to turn the county’s political landscape from red to blue.

Now those are the kinds of Sanders supporters I respect. Grassroots efforts to get shit done is admirable.
posted by gusottertrout at 10:04 AM on December 12, 2016 [19 favorites]


Soren_lorenson, try starting with your legislative district Democratic Party group? They might have a more useful web presence. (Or might not, but could be a way to start.)
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 10:05 AM on December 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


Yeah, it's kind of severely depressing. I want like, huge resistance planning. Tactical, strategic, useful.
posted by odinsdream at 10:05 AM on December 12, 2016 [13 favorites]


Soren - have you tried contacting our local state rep and asking them who you should talk to in order to get more involved? I assume they've got to know . . .
posted by dinty_moore at 10:05 AM on December 12, 2016 [2 favorites]


Politico: Clinton campaign backs call for intelligence briefing before Electoral College vote

The instant Twitter hot takes on this that I'm seeing seem to be some version of "Politicizing it by party will undermine desperate need for bipartisan oversight and indulge Hillary supporters' fantasies. Ugh. Stay out JP."
posted by zachlipton at 10:11 AM on December 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


The instant Twitter hot takes on this that I'm seeing seem to be some version of "Politicizing it by party will undermine desperate need for bipartisan oversight and indulge Hillary supporters' fantasies. Ugh. Stay out JP."

Meanwhile if the Dems don't say anything everyone gets mad at them for normalizing.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 10:15 AM on December 12, 2016 [12 favorites]


"Politicizing it by party." What they really mean is "politicizing it by Clinton."
posted by tonycpsu at 10:16 AM on December 12, 2016 [10 favorites]


That's why I'm pleased to see McConnell backing an investigation. We need GOP people calling this out.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:17 AM on December 12, 2016 [14 favorites]


I am simply gobsmacked that both the Pennsylvania and Allegheny County Democratic Committee webpages/web presences are both like LA LA LA HEY EVERYONE DON'T FORGET TO VOTE NOVEMBER 8!!! AND ALSO FILL OUT THIS FORM SO WE CAN SPAM YOU WITH REQUESTS FOR MONEY BUT THEN PROVIDE YOU NO OTHER USEFUL INFORMATION! Yo, it is December 12, we have elected an orange traitor, our party is in disarray, how about some fucking outreach???

I am going to start with what I think is my teensy hyperlocal precinct because the "official" address I dredged up from the bowels of the website is right around the corner from my house, so clearly someone near me knows something. I don't want to, like, ride in with Bernie Sanders and take shit over, I just want to attend some meetings, so what's going on, see what opportunities there are, and also ohai it looks like you're using Wordpress and not updating shit in a timely manner CAN I PROVIDE SOME ASSISTANCE?

I will say: Everyone keep a close, close eye on your local school boards. That's often where right wing whackadoodles start because no one pays attention. And then they get "governing experience" that makes them look like cromulent candidates for city councils and state Houses and become unstoppable. Our local Pantsuit Nation spinoff just had a great post warning people of some very shady characters coming for our city school board (tl;dr: we recently got our very first locally-targeted privatize/charterize all the things! PAC that will of course be attracting money from terrible billionaires from across the land in an attempt to take over the school board. I had no idea that had happened and am now very much sitting at attention, ready to get behind other candidates with money and volunteering, to stop these assholes.)
posted by soren_lorensen at 10:18 AM on December 12, 2016 [32 favorites]


That's why I'm pleased to see McConnell backing an investigation. We need GOP people calling this out.

I suspect McConnell's only doing it to make sure nothing comes from the activity, not to actually investigate given his previous statements and Trump support.
posted by gusottertrout at 10:19 AM on December 12, 2016 [20 favorites]


looks like i picked the wrong week to quit sniffin' glue
posted by entropicamericana at 10:31 AM on December 12, 2016 [6 favorites]


looks like i picked the wrong week to quit sniffin' glue

Still time for the rest of us to pick the right week to start, though!
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 10:36 AM on December 12, 2016 [9 favorites]


I am simply gobsmacked that both the Pennsylvania and Allegheny County Democratic Committee webpages/web presences are both like LA LA LA HEY EVERYONE DON'T FORGET TO VOTE NOVEMBER 8!!! AND ALSO FILL OUT THIS FORM SO WE CAN SPAM YOU WITH REQUESTS FOR MONEY BUT THEN PROVIDE YOU NO OTHER USEFUL INFORMATION! Yo, it is December 12, we have elected an orange traitor, our party is in disarray, how about some fucking outreach???

I've got this half-baked idea in mind to compile a bunch of assessments of poor local Democratic party operations and outreach and send it on to the state and national DNC. I think flooding them with specific details on how their backbench is coasting could help them triage and prioritize, and I don't really have faith that they'll put in the work doing that themselves, so if you just provide that assessment on a platter it might help get the wheels turning.
posted by jason_steakums at 10:38 AM on December 12, 2016 [15 favorites]


If you're sniffing glue already, the next two to eight years might be entirely unsuitable for stopping. Eight! Just writing that... sob.
posted by RedOrGreen at 10:39 AM on December 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


I live in a very red county (Horry County, SC) and our local Democratic Party is small but active. They could do more but need the people to make it happen. My local Action Together (formerly Pantsuit Nation) group has met twice already (50 people!!), and yesterday we talked about what we could do from within the Democratic Party since that's the natural place for political action. I also was asked to do social media stuff for the Dems... mostly it's retirees running the local Party so they really need younger and tech-savvy people to help out. So if your local party doesn't seem to be doing much it's probably because they need people like you to do it. There was a great quote on here that I can't find at the moment but it was something like, become the entryist conspiracy you wish to see in the world. Find friends, go to a meeting, volunteer.
posted by rabbitrabbit at 10:40 AM on December 12, 2016 [5 favorites]


The biggest problem with the next six weeks is that trying to defeat