Quote Of The Day

I rise today to say treason is not a laughing matter. It is a serious crime embedded in the Constitution, punishable by death. But since your Commander-in -Chief chose to raise it at a political rally, let’s have a discussion about treason… Is it treason for a presidential campaign to meet with a hostile foreign power to sell out our democracy and rig the election? Is it treason for a presidential campaign to meet with Russian spies who promise information that was negative about a political opponent and then fail to report that meeting to law enforcement officials? Is it treason for your former National Security Advisor to be a Russian asset sitting at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue doing the bidding of Vladimir Putin? How dare you lecture us about treason. This is not a dictatorship. It’s a democracy, and we do not have to stand for a reality show host masquerading as president of the United States.” ~ Hakeem Jeffries, Democratic Congressman from New York

It’s All Chaos From Here On In

From The Palmer Report:

The sitting President of the United States has been caught committing serious crimes to rig the election in his favor, and then committing more crimes while trying to cover it up. The prosecutors have him all but nailed for obstruction of justice. The president is only left with no-win options. His popular support is weak and his own party is still trying to prop him up, but wary that a few more blows and it’ll become impossible. Donald Trump is now living Richard Nixon’s endgame nightmare, but the outcome is less predictable, because even Nixon wasn’t this mentally unstable.

Welcome to 2018, or 1974 revisited if you like. Trump now has his back against the wall. There are days where he appears to understand that, and days where he’s lost in a delusional haze, but the bottom line is that he’s not getting past this. Maybe he’ll agree to testify for Robert Mueller. Maybe he’ll tell the truth, which would incriminate him. Maybe he’ll lie, which would also incriminate him. Maybe he’ll plead the Fifth, which would incinerate what’s left of his presidency. We have no idea what he’ll do, because even he keeps changing his mind out loud.

We do know, however, that we’re entering a period of chaos. We can see it just from how rapidly the endgame moves are surfacing. Everyone from Trump’s current Attorney General and current CIA Director, to his former FBI Director and his former Acting Attorney General, have all testified about him for the Special Counsel. People like Rick Gates, who didn’t want a deal, now suddenly want a deal, because they know it’s now or never.

All of the players in this scandal are trying to figure out how to play chess in a manner which keeps them from going to prison, and at the center of it all is a mentally deranged “President” who is intent on playing Hungry Hungry Hippos. Deals and confessions and accusations and incriminations will now be the norm. Revelations and bombshells will now land daily, as everyone jockeys for position. Donald Trump’s remaining allies will launch whatever feeble or not-so-feeble counterattack they’ve been saving for the very end. Then we’ll find out that Mueller has had an entire deck of aces up his sleeve all along.

We don’t know precisely what will come next, both because this guy is too unstable, and because when the last guy was in this situation, this was roughly the point at which he quit. Nixon had the sense to understand that he wouldn’t survive the obstruction charges. He knew it was about to finish him politically, so he bailed. What would have happened if Nixon had refused to resign, and he were five times crazier and ten times stupider? Welcome to 2018. Trump will go down in the end. But it’s all chaos from here on in until he does.

Quote Of The Day

The President said he was going to run America like his businesses. Apparently we have reached the part where he would usually just declare bankruptcy and run away.” ~ Jason Kander, Let America Vote

Quote of the Day

We must never never adjust to the present coarseness of our national dialogue, with the tone set at the top. We must never regard as normal the regular and casual undermining of our democratic norms and ideals. We must never meekly accept the daily sundering of our country. The personal attacks, the threats against principles, freedoms and institution, the flagrant disregard for truth and decency, the reckless provocations, most often for the pettiest and most personal reasons, reasons having nothing whatsoever to do with the fortunes of the people that we have been elected to serve. ~ Senator Jeff Flake, (R) Arizona

I am no fan of Jeff Flake. Never have been. But it was quite heartening—not to mention just a little bit surreal—to hear him stand up in the Senate yesterday and finally say (as a Conservative) what we on the Left have been saying since last November. Trump is unfit for office. Period.

I’m Not a Witch…

…but I do approve of this message!

I curse Donald Trump and I curse his ideas.  I invoke the Hex of Obsolescence.

May he be devoured by his own shadow, may his name stick in every throat, may the favoring of him bind to the earth every roving foot until the nail of hatred is pulled, may his ideas twist to lance any hand which will not renounce its greed, may the churned mud of lies clot every closed heart with weakness and fear, may he and his works fall and be devoured by the teeming creatures that feast on rot and putrescence, may his ugliness be sunk into emptiness and ruin, may his name and his word turn to dust and be driven like ash before a fiery wind, never to find rest in any fertile field, nor nourish any fruit.

All The Signs Were There…

From 2012!

And from 2013

And to be filed under Some Things Never Change…

Imagine How Dangerous He’d Be…

…if he actually surrounded himself with competent boot-lickers?

From Palmer Report:

Donald Trump’s attorney Michael Cohen was set to voluntarily testify today before the Senate Intelligence Committee behind closed doors about his role in the Trump-Russia scandal. But after he made a last minute move that went against the Senate’s wishes, it decided to cancel his private testimony and subpoena him to testify in public instead.

The controversy began when Cohen violated his agreement with the Senate by releasing a statement to the media declaring his innocence just before his testimony was set to take place. This prompted the Senate committee to decide that, because Cohen was speaking publicly about his testimony, he shouldn’t be allowed to testify in private. It promptly sent him home – but his respite will be a very brief one.

Manu Raju of CNN has revealed that “Senate Intel now playing hardball with Trump lawyer Michael Cohen: Now plan OPEN session for Cohen to testify publicly” (link), while NBC News is confirming that he’s being subpoenaed to force him to deliver that public testimony (link). If Cohen defies the subpoena, the Senate can find him to be in contempt of Congress. At that point a judge would have to decide whether Cohen can be legally compelled to show up and testify. This comes even as the Trump-Russia scandal is exploding in every direction over the past twenty-four hours.

Last night it was revealed that Donald Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort has been under a secret surveillance warrant the entire time, and that he’s about to be indicted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller. Based on the timing of the warrant, it’s believed that Trump was picked up on Manafort’s wiretap when the two regularly spoke by phone after Trump took office. Meanwhile, Michael Cohen is about to be compelled to blab in public about his own role in the scandal.

Quote of the Day

We are leaderless. America doesn’t have a president. America has a man in the White House holding the spot, and wreaking havoc as he waits for the day when a real president arrives to replace him.” ~ Charles M. Blow, writing in The New York Times

Blow continues:

Donald Trump is many things—most of them despicable—but the leader of a nation he is not. He is not a great man. Hell, he isn’t even a good man.

Donald Trump is a man of flawed character and a moral cavity. He cannot offer moral guidance because he has no moral compass. He is too small to see over his inflated ego.

Trump has personalized the presidency in unprecedented ways—making every battle and every war about his personal feelings. Did the person across the street or around the world say good or bad things about him? Does the media treat him fairly? Is someone in his coterie of corruption outshining him or casting negative light on him?

His interests center on the self; country be damned.

Not Everything Is Lost

Via Wil Wheaton:

After learning my flight was detained 4 hours,
I heard the announcement:
If anyone in the vicinity of gate 4-A understands any Arabic,
Please come to the gate immediately.

Well—one pauses these days. Gate 4-A was my own gate. I went there.
An older woman in full traditional Palestinian dress,
Just like my grandma wore, was crumpled to the floor, wailing loudly.
Help, said the flight service person. Talk to her. What is her
Problem? we told her the flight was going to be four hours late and she
Did this.

I put my arm around her and spoke to her haltingly.
Shu dow-a, shu- biduck habibti, stani stani schway, min fadlick,
Sho bit se-wee?

The minute she heard any words she knew—however poorly used—
She stopped crying.

She thought our flight had been canceled entirely.
She needed to be in El Paso for some major medical treatment the
Following day. I said no, no, we’re fine, you’ll get there, just late,

Who is picking you up? Let’s call him and tell him.
We called her son and I spoke with him in English.
I told him I would stay with his mother till we got on the plane and
Would ride next to her—Southwest.

She talked to him. Then we called her other sons just for the fun of it.

Then we called my dad and he and she spoke for a while in Arabic and
Found out of course they had ten shared friends.

Then I thought just for the heck of it why not call some Palestinian
Poets I know and let them chat with her. This all took up about 2 hours.

She was laughing a lot by then. Telling about her life. Answering

She had pulled a sack of homemade mamool cookies—little powdered
Sugar crumbly mounds stuffed with dates and nuts—out of her bag—
And was offering them to all the women at the gate.

To my amazement, not a single woman declined one. It was like a
Sacrament. The traveler from Argentina, the traveler from California,
The lovely woman from Laredo—we were all covered with the same
Powdered sugar. And smiling. There are no better cookies.

And then the airline broke out the free beverages from huge coolers—
Non-alcoholic—and the two little girls for our flight, one African
American, one Mexican American—ran around serving us all apple juice
And lemonade and they were covered with powdered sugar too.

And I noticed my new best friend—by now we were holding hands—
Had a potted plant poking out of her bag, some medicinal thing,

With green furry leaves. Such an old country traveling tradition. Always
Carry a plant. Always stay rooted to somewhere.

And I looked around that gate of late and weary ones and thought,
This is the world I want to live in. The shared world.

Not a single person in this gate—once the crying of confusion stopped
—has seemed apprehensive about any other person.

They took the cookies. I wanted to hug all those other women too.
This can still happen anywhere.

Not everything is lost.

~Naomi Shihab Nye (b. 1952), “Wandering Around an Albuquerque Airport Terminal.”

The Disruption of Orange Caligula

Despite the fact that he has failed at pretty much every endeavor he’s set his tiny hands to, the current illegitimate occupant of the White House has succeeded spectacularly at one thing: absolutely monopolizing the entire “fake news” cycle—that he so loathes—24/7.

Even yesterday, as nature was putting on one of the most awe-inspiring spectacles imaginable, the shitgibbon still managed—through his own blatantly willful stupidity (as I predicted), made it all about him.

I mean seriously. If someone in a lab coat told the idiot not to touch a hot stove, I’m sure he’d think, “No one can tell me what to do…especially some scientist.”

And we saw that yesterday.

And now he’s flying into Phoenix to hold a “rally.” I guess widdle Donny’s ego needs to be stroked after the last couple weeks. Oh hell, after the last eight months. Is it possible that it’s finally pushing through his thick, malignantly narcissistic skull that except for his knuckle-dragging, basement-dwelling base, everyone is coming to hate him?

All I know is that this Phoenix trip is going to be a shit show. Both sides are planning on infiltrating the other to cause trouble. Supposedly the anti-Trumpers are buying up tickets and will be staging a mass walk-out the moment the tiny-fisted ferret-wearing shitgibbon starts blathering incoherently. In other words, the moment he starts speaking.

Meanwhile, the Trumpanzees are openly advertising for actors (preferably of color) to pose as anti-Trump protestors (at $10/hour) to cause trouble so Dear Leader can claim with his trademark smirk, “See, both sides are violent!”

My employer has taken note of this gathering tsunami of stupid about to descent upon the city. I work about two blocks from the state capitol building, and yesterday we received a call and email from our supervisor:

As a follow-up to this morning’s Deputy Director’s meeting, here is guidance regarding tomorrow for our employees specifically in the Capitol Complex/Campus, and Phoenix Metro areas. For employee safety, we are making the following options available for Division Directors to use based on your discretion and individual business needs:

If employees are non-essential (as deemed per individual Division Directors) and have the ability to telecommute, the recommendation is to have them do so. Employees are not required to physically come to the Capitol Complex/Campus/Phoenix Metro if they are not needed. However, if they do, then we’d like them to leave the area no later than 1 p.m. as there are reports of large protests, not to mention traffic congestion in preparation for the arrival and event.

Additionally, all facilities in the area locked down at 1 p.m. to preclude any general public entry and for the safety of our employees.

Only the senior tech at my facility will be on site; myself and my other colleague were requested to telecommute. One of the perks of being a contract employee, however, is that I’m not trusted with the keys to the remote access kingdom. Asked what to do about this, my supervisor replied, “Put down 8 hours on your time sheet and enjoy your day off.”

This actually works out well, because I was already planning on calling out today anyway. Two weeks into the new school year, Ben has already brought home—and shared—the first incident of the upper respiratory creeping crud. He started exhibiting symptoms last Friday, and I knew I’d be feeling it within 48 hours. Sure enough, it started to hit shortly after I got finished putting the new bed frame together (another story for another time) on Sunday. By the time I left work yesterday my throat was on fire, and this morning—after a horrible night’s sleep—I can tell it’s already moving down into my chest. I’m hoping to ward off full-blown bronchitis by hitting it hard with Mucinex to keep the sludge flowing, but I know how this typically goes, and I will undoubtedly be making an appointment with my Primary Care doctor by week’s end.

And now I’m going back to bed.