Trump And Nuclear Secrets-A-Lago

Peace in the Valley

It would be irresponsible not to speculate, right?

First: in case you missed it…

Devlin Barrett and Carol Leonnig report:

A document describing a foreign government’s military defenses, including its nuclear capabilities, was found by FBI agents who searched former president Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence and private club last month, according to people familiar with the matter, underscoring concerns among U.S. intelligence officials about classified material stashed in the Florida property.

Some of the seized documents detail top-secret U.S. operations so closely guarded that many senior national security officials are kept in the dark about them. Only the president, some members of his Cabinet or a near-Cabinet-level official could authorize other government officials to know details of these special-access programs, according to people familiar with the search, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe sensitive details of an ongoing investigation.

(click here to continue reading Material on foreign nation’s nuclear capabilities seized at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago – The Washington Post.)

What it is

Wikipedia lists eight countries with nuclear weapons in their own arsenal, US, Russia, United Kingdom, France, China, India, Pakistan and North Korea. Israel is probably the ninth, but refuses to publicly comment. There are also nations that allow other countries to store nuclear weapons1 though this is probably not as valuable information to sell, as presumedly the nation hosting the weapons already knows about it. 

Oh sure, why else would Trump want such a document? He’s long been known both as averse to reading and pro “transactional”. He wouldn’t have undertaken the effort and risk to evade government safeguards to steal all these sensitive documents without having a plan for selling the information in the future. He didn’t steal thousands of pages just to read them at his leisure.

So which country is this about? And who is the potential purchaser? Per the clues in the above cited Washington Post article and elsewhere, probably not the United States.

Putin would probably pay a lot to know what the US knows about Russia’s nuclear archive, and would probably like to know about all the other nuclear powers too.

China, the same. Are there US nukes on Taiwan still?

I don’t think the UK or France would be in the market for info on other nuclear powers, the US remains their ally, and the US has plenty of intelligence it shares with allies.

I’m not sure Trump knows much about Pakistan and India, nor would he have learned much over the years.

North Korea is certainly a prime Trump partner, they would find some way to pay Trump for information about all other nuclear states.

Israel is a very likely subject, there are plenty of potential purchasers for information about Israel’s nukes: every wealthy Middle Eastern kingdom, Syria, Russia, Egypt, plus many more.

Will we ever know? If Trump’s bumbling lawyers keep bumbling, maybe? 

Footnotes:
  1. Italy, Germany, who knows where else []

Trump Struggle To Find A Lawyer Continues

Same Sentiment

The Washington Post gives The Former Guy an unpaid advertorial regarding his never-ending search for competent and experienced legal advice.

The struggle to find expert legal advice puts Trump in a bind as he faces potential criminal exposure from a records dispute with the National Archives that escalated into a federal investigation into possible violations of the Espionage Act and other statutes.

“Everyone is saying no,” said a prominent Republican lawyer, who like some others spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss confidential conversations.

…Ordinarily, the prestige and publicity of representing a former president, as well as the new and complex legal issues at stake in this case, would attract high-powered attorneys. But Trump’s search is being hampered by his divisiveness, as well as his reputation for stiffing vendors and ignoring advice.

“In olden days, he would tell firms representing him was a benefit because they could advertise off it. Today it’s not the same,” said Michael Cohen, a former lawyer for Trump who was convicted of tax evasion, false statements, campaign finance violations and lying to Congress in 2018.

“He’s also a very difficult client in that he’s always pushing the envelope, he rarely listens to sound legal advice, and he wants you to do things that are not appropriate, ethically or legally.”

(click here to continue reading Trump is rushing to hire seasoned lawyers — but he keeps hearing ‘No’ – The Washington Post.)

I suppose competency and the ability to follow the news are often related, perhaps that is why TFG cannot seem to find counsel. I mean, a lawyer could get disbarred, or worse, have criminal exposure all without the certainty of being paid. Dream job! A legal firm could potentially bill a lot of hours working on the 381 cases currently being litigated, but again, with a high probability of not being paid in full. TFG expects to have the RNC pay for many of these fees, but this interesting arrangement might be unsustainable for the full docket, especially if The Lord God Emperor Tiny Hands does in fact declare a run for 2024. 

Trump - Mother of All Liars

Meanwhile, for an allegedly wealthy man, TFG sure does need to fundraise a lot. At least the money that he manages to skim from his sheeple won’t get spent on political races to benefit Republicans.

Compare and contrast…

Josh Dawsey and Isaac Arnsdorf report:

Former president Donald Trump bombarded his supporters with more than 100 emails asking for money based on the FBI’s search of the Mar-a-Lago Club for classified materials last week. They paid off.

Contributions to Trump’s political action committee topped $1 million on at least two days after the Aug. 8 search of his Palm Beach, Fla., estate, according to two people familiar with the figures. The daily hauls jumped from a level of $200,000 to $300,000 that had been typical in recent months

(click here to continue reading Trump rakes in millions off FBI search at Mar-a-Lago – The Washington Post.)

vs.

Shane Goldmacher reports:

Online fund-raising has slowed across much of the Republican Party in recent months, an unusual pullback of small donors that has set off a mad rush among Republican political operatives to understand why — and reverse the sudden decline before it damages the party’s chances this fall.

Small-dollar donations typically increase as an election nears. But just the opposite has happened in recent months across a wide range of Republican entities, including every major party committee and former President Donald J. Trump’s political operation.

The total amount donated online fell by more than 12 percent across all federal Republican campaigns and committees in the second quarter compared with the first quarter, according to an analysis of federal records from WinRed, the main online Republican donation-processing portal.

More alarming for Republicans: Democratic contributions surged at the same time. Total federal donations on ActBlue, the Democratic counterpart, jumped by more than 21 percent.

The overall Democratic fund-raising edge online widened by $100 million from the last quarter of 2021 to the most recent three-month period, records show.

Exacerbating the fund-raising problems for Republicans is that Mr. Trump continues to be the party’s dominant fund-raiser and yet virtually none of the tens of millions of dollars he has raised has gone toward defeating Democrats. Instead, the money has funded his political team and retribution agenda against Republicans who have crossed him.

(click here to continue reading Republicans Confront Unexpected Online Money Slowdown – The New York Times.)

What Are You Hiding, Trump?

Footnotes:
  1. !!!!! []

Can Donald Trump Run for President Again If He Broke A Particular Law?

I Will Never Call Donald Trump President

Survey says…

Charlie Savage, The New York Times, reports:

Early reports that the F.B.I. search of former President Donald J. Trump’s residence in Florida related to an investigation into whether he had unlawfully taken government files when he left the White House focused attention on an obscure criminal law barring removal of official records. The penalties for breaking that law include disqualification from holding any federal office.

Because Mr. Trump is widely believed to be preparing to run for president again in 2024, that unusual penalty raised the prospect that he might be legally barred from returning to the White House.

Specifically, the law in question — Section 2071 of Title 18 of the United States Code — makes it a crime if someone who has custody of government documents or records “willfully and unlawfully conceals, removes, mutilates, obliterates, falsifies or destroys” them. If convicted, defendants can be fined or sentenced to prison for up to three years. In addition, the statute says, if they are currently in a federal office, they “shall forfeit” that office, and they shall “be disqualified from holding any office under the United States.” On its face, then, if Mr. Trump were to be charged and convicted of removing, concealing or destroying government records under that law, he would seem to be ineligible to become president again.

But there was reason for caution

several legal scholars — including Seth B. Tillman of Maynooth University in Ireland and Eugene Volokh of the University of California, Los Angeles — noted that the Constitution sets eligibility criteria for who can be president, and argued that Supreme Court rulings suggest Congress cannot alter them. The Constitution allows Congress to disqualify people from holding office in impeachment proceedings, but grants no such power for ordinary criminal law.

(click here to continue reading Can Donald Trump Run for President Again If He Broke This Law? – The New York Times.)

So, maybe? Can a law passed by Congress supersede a provision in the Constitution? And will states allow a criminal on the ballot?

The Democrats Are Playing A Dangerous Gambit

Chess Meisters

Maybe this has happened for a long time, and we didn’t notice it, but in 2022, several primary races between Republicans have had Democrats spending on ads for the more extreme Republican, with the thought being the extremists will be easier to defeat in a general election. 

This strategy better be right! or else a whole cadre of MAGA zealots are going to be in a position to really really really wreck havoc. 2016 – 2020 was bad enough, and most Republicans voted in lock-step with Trump because essentially their policy goals overlapped. But if the 2022 New MAGA gets elected, you better start looking for the exit signs.

Allegedly, Hillary Clinton’s campaign in 2016 encouraged Trump to run, with the expectation that the country wouldn’t vote for such an obviously deranged and stupid man, we know how that turned out – not good.

Governor Pritzker allegedly helped notorious White Nationalist and potential anti-semite Darren Bailey win the GOP IL primary, Pritzker better mop the floor with the guy, or Democrats and other sane voters in Illinois are going to be pissed. 

Rep Peter Meijer of Michigan lost in the GOP primary to John Gibbs, helped by Democrats. Blake Masters and Kari Lake in Arizona, and so on. 

A dangerous gambit, and it better work in all cases it was attempted! For all of our sakes…

Emails Reveal Details of Trump Fake Electors Plan

Impeach Trump

The fake electoral vote creator aka insurrectionists need to serve time in prison.

The New York Times reports:

Previously undisclosed emails provide an inside look at the increasingly desperate and often slapdash efforts by advisers to President Donald J. Trump to reverse his election defeat in the weeks before the Jan. 6 attack, including acknowledgments that a key element of their plan was of dubious legality and lived up to its billing as “fake.”

The dozens of emails among people connected to the Trump campaign, outside advisers and close associates of Mr. Trump show a particular focus on assembling lists of people who would claim — with no basis — to be Electoral College electors on his behalf in battleground states that he had lost.

In emails reviewed by The New York Times and authenticated by people who had worked with the Trump campaign at the time, one lawyer involved in the detailed discussions repeatedly used the word “fake” to refer to the so-called electors, who were intended to provide Vice President Mike Pence and Mr. Trump’s allies in Congress a rationale for derailing the congressional process of certifying the outcome. And lawyers working on the proposal made clear they knew that the pro-Trump electors they were putting forward might not hold up to legal scrutiny.

In a follow-up email, Mr. Wilenchik wrote that “‘alternative’ votes is probably a better term than ‘fake’ votes,” adding a smiley face emoji.

 

(click here to continue reading Emails Reveal Details of Trump Fake Electors Plan – The New York Times.)

After Recent Turmoil, the Race for Texas Governor Is Tightening

Ann Richards Congress Avenue Bridge

Speaking of the Jerkstore-Who-Is-Gov of Texas, there is an actual possibility he could lose to Beto O’Rourke. Slim, but possible.

The New York Times reports:

One of the deadliest school shootings in U.S. history. The revival of a 1920s ban on abortion. The country’s worst episode of migrant death in recent memory. And an electrical grid, which failed during bitter cold, now straining under soaring heat.

The unrelenting succession of death and difficulty facing Texans over the last two months has soured them on the direction of the state, hurting Gov. Greg Abbott and making the race for governor perhaps the most competitive since Democrats last held that office in the 1990s.

Polls have shown a tightening, single-digit contest between Mr. Abbott, the two-term incumbent, and his ubiquitous Democratic challenger, the former congressman Beto O’Rourke. Mr. O’Rourke is now raising more campaign cash than Mr. Abbott — $27.6 million to $24.9 million in the last filing — in a race that is likely to be among the most expensive of 2022.

(click here to continue reading After Recent Turmoil, the Race for Texas Governor Is Tightening – The New York Times.)

Ann Richards

Ethanol: The Fuel That Powers Putin

Koval - Single Grains

David Frum may be an Axis of Evil asshole, but he is right sometimes. In this case, re: the ridiculousness of US ethanol policies.

The Atlantic reports:

The United States is supporting Ukraine with aid and weapons and punishing Russian aggression with financial and economic sanctions. But the United States can do more to resolve the global crisis caused by the Russian invasion of Ukraine: It can end the ethanol program.

For decades, the U.S. government has, at great expense, encouraged farmers to grow more corn so that it can be turned into ethanol, a gasoline additive. Ethanol makers receive all kinds of grants and subsidies. Federal regulations require ethanol to be blended into gasoline, creating a giant industry that would not exist without large subsidies and imperious mandates. America’s largest ethanol company earned annual revenues of $8 billion pre-pandemic. Demand from the ethanol industry, in turn, bids up the price of corn, and the income of those who farm it.

Ethanol has become a Washington joke. John McCain often quipped that he started his day with a glass of ethanol. Who could blame him? The ethanol program is a giveaway so big, so entrenched, and so wasteful that laughter might seem like the best response. But as we laugh, we’re missing that America’s ethanol madness has strengthened Russia’s grip upon the world’s food supply.

(click here to continue reading Ethanol: The Fuel That Powers Putin – The Atlantic.)

America could grow much of the world’s wheat, but we’ve incentivized farmers to grow corn for ethanol instead…

Texas Abortion Law Requires Civil Disobedience In Response

I’ve been ruminating about the new draconian Texas anti-abortion law we discussed recently. I’m deeply disturbed by it, and its potential for damage to young mothers & fathers. Not every act of fornication should result in progeny1 which is the long term plan of these Christian Taliban zealots.

Birth control should be free as well, I expect the Christian Taliban to start exerting pressure on this next.

Metaphorical Zygote

Quoting from Lawrence Tribe:

If you suspect that a Texan is seeking to obtain an abortion after the sixth week of pregnancy, not only will you be able to sue the provider to try to stop it, but if you succeed, you’ll also be entitled to compensation. (And what’s known as the litigation privilege would likely protect you from a defamation claim even if you’re wrong.)

I have not yet made the time to read S.B. 8 closely, but can reports be made anonymously? If so, every liberal minded person in the entire world should file a report naming some conservative woman, or the wife and daughters of a conservative man. 

If reports cannot be made anonymously, there still must be a concerted effort to gum up the works, to throw a wrench in the gears so that the machinery of repression cannot move freely. Brave and dedicated women2 could claim to have abortions, whether or not they did, and report each other. If hundreds of thousands or even millions of women are being investigated by Ken Paxton’s Uterus Police™, they won’t be able to process them all.

We cannot let this madness continue.

Planned Parenthood could use your donation too:

Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed a new abortion ban into law

Sometimes referred to as the “heartbeat bill,” SB 8 is one of the most extreme abortion bans in the U.S. It would ban abortion in Texas at approximately six weeks — before most people even know they’re pregnant — with no exceptions for rape, sexual abuse, incest, and fetal anomaly diagnoses. For people with a regular menstrual cycle, that’s just two weeks after a missed period.

Abortion is still safe and legal throughout Texas and in all 50 states. Our health centers are open for patients to get the care they need, including medication and surgical abortion. Texas’ new abortion ban (SB 8) 8 is set to go into effect September 1, 2021, but we are now in court to challenge this extreme law.

 

(click here to continue reading Senate Bill 8 | Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas, Inc..)

Maybe the lawsuits will nip this vile legislative cruelty before it spreads across the nation, but we need a Plan B too…

Footnotes:
  1. and yes, speaking from personal experience, I am glad I came of age in a time after Roe v. Wade was settled law but before this current crop of zealots became powerful enough to impose their will on a reluctant public []
  2. and men as their allies []

Suddenly, (Some) Republicans Are All In on the Vaccine

Susan Glasser, The New Yorker, reports:

Since the end of the Trump Presidency, Republicans have been ratcheting up the doom-and-gloom quotient in their rhetoric. By this spring, they settled on a narrative of permanent crisis—to be blamed on President Biden, of course. There was the Biden Border Crisis. The Crime Crisis. The Inflation Crisis and its corollary, the High-Gas-Price Crisis. The Critical-Race-Theory Crisis. Even, this week, the Ben & Jerry’s-Is-Mean-to-Israel Crisis. America under Biden, to hear them tell it, has become a hellscape of disasters. In June, the House Minority Leader, Kevin McCarthy, issued a letter to his colleagues. “Our country is in crisis,” he declared. “Republicans stand against the impending malaise and stand for a greatness that we reached just a few years ago.” The one crisis that Republicans have tended not to mention is the actual one—that is, the pandemic. When Republican politicians have focussed on covid in recent months, it’s often been to give Donald Trump credit for the vaccines, while simultaneously accusing the Biden Administration of forcing those same vaccines on unwilling Americans.

So it was more than a bit surprising to see some Republicans this week kinda, sorta, maybe embrace a different message. The Louisiana congressman Steve Scalise, the House’s No. 2 Republican, posed for a photo of himself getting a vaccine shot, many months after he was eligible, and urged others to do the same. “Get the vaccine,” Scalise said, at a press conference on Thursday. “I have high confidence in it. I got it myself.” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, a polio survivor who was never on board with his party’s vaccine denialists and anti-maskers, warned, during his own press conference: either get vaccinated or get ready for more lockdowns. “This is not complicated,” McConnell said. Fox News, which, along with Facebook, has been among the country’s premier platforms for vaccine disinformation in recent months, started promoting a new get-vaccinated public-service announcement. Its prime-time star, the Trump confidant Sean Hannity, stared straight into the camera on Monday night and said, “It absolutely makes sense for many Americans to get vaccinated.”

(click here to continue reading Suddenly, (Some) Republicans Are All In on the Vaccine | The New Yorker.)

Covid Vaccines

I dunno, can you really trust a Republican to do the right thing for humanity? Even once? For instance, Sean Hannity has already denied he told anyone to get vaccinated because, paraphrased since I’m not interested in looking at his face this morning, “I never told anyone to get vaccinated because I’m not a health care professional”. 

The cynical answer to this conservative flip-flop is that1 some GOP political consultant did the math and wrote a warning memo to members of the party who are able to read. If thousands, or millions of conservatives die then some close “purple” Congressional districts will vote Democratic members into office, not to mention Fox News ratings will tumble if their viewers are on respirators or in funeral parlors and unable to control the remote. 

The real question is will this new pro-vaccine message penetrate the conservative base’s consciousness? Honestly, the base has to be pretty gullible and easy to lead if they believed in nonsense like Obama is from Kenya, and Jade Helm, and that Hillary Clinton & Bill Gates has a secret pedophile ring in the basement of a Washington pizza restaurant, and whatever the gazillion other ridiculous conspiracies were. So maybe they will quickly forget months of these same talking heads arguing the exact opposite? Freedom! 

But influential falsehood spreaders like Tucker Carlson and Joseph Mercola haven’t switched yet, thus I’m not sure what Brittany Johnson2 of Little Rock, AR will do – will she continue sharing fake news about 5G cell towers and mRNA on Facebook? Or will she get a vaccine before she is hospitalized? Is she still going to mindlessly chant, “lock her up” at the next Trump rally? Or tell people that keys stick to her forehead?

Only time and hospital bed availability numbers will tell…

COVID19 Risk by county 2021 07 23
COVID19 Risk by county 2021-07-23.PNG via NYT

Footnotes:
  1. probably []
  2. a made up name []

Texas’s Abortion Law Upends the Legal System

Dome of Texas Capitol Building - Ektachrome Holga

Texas is trying to destroy America in many ways currently, but their tactics regarding women’s health autonomy is especially troublesome.

Lawrence Tribe & Stephen Vladeck write:

Not only has Texas banned virtually all abortions after the sixth week of pregnancy, a point at which many women do not even know they’re pregnant; it has also provided for enforcement of that ban by private citizens. If you suspect that a Texan is seeking to obtain an abortion after the sixth week of pregnancy, not only will you be able to sue the provider to try to stop it, but if you succeed, you’ll also be entitled to compensation. (And what’s known as the litigation privilege would likely protect you from a defamation claim even if you’re wrong.) The law, known as S.B. 8, effectively enlists the citizenry to act as an anti-abortion Stasi.

All of that would be problematic enough, but enlisting private citizens to enforce the restriction makes it very difficult, procedurally, to challenge the bill’s constitutionality in court. A lawsuit filed in federal court in Austin last week tries to get around those roadblocks. We believe that it should succeed. But if it fails, not only would that leave the most restrictive anti-abortion law in the country impervious to constitutional challenge; it would also encourage other states to follow Texas’ lead on abortion, as well as on every other contested question of social policy.

California could shift to private enforcement of its gun control regulations, never mind the Second Amendment implications of such restrictions. Vermont could shift to private enforcement of its environmental regulations, never mind the federal pre-emption implications. And the list goes on.

In the abstract, allowing citizens to help enforce the law is nothing new. Many states have so-called citizen suit or private attorney general provisions that allow people to help enforce a range of laws and rules governing consumer and environmental protection, government transparency and more. The federal government authorizes citizens to help bring certain fraud claims on behalf of the United States — and allows those citizens to share in any damages that the government receives. The critical point in both of those contexts is that citizens are supplementing government enforcement.

The Texas law, by contrast, leaves private enforcement as the only mechanism for enforcing the broad restrictions on abortions after the sixth week of pregnancy. It specifically precludes the state’s attorney general or any other state official from initiating enforcement. Under this new law, private enforcement supplants government enforcement rather than supplements it. If this seems like a strange move, it is. And it appears to be a deeply cynical one, serving no purpose other than to make the abortion ban difficult to challenge in court.

(click here to continue reading Opinion | Texas’s Abortion Law Upends the Legal System – The New York Times.)

Super scary. The Christian Taliban are rampaging over our freedoms, and the liberal political & judicial class seems to be helpless to stop it.

Trump Is Guilty of Insurrection

Despite how the majority of Republicans looked the other way, Trump is still guilty of inciting insurrection. His role in encouraging terrorists to storm the Capitol building will be remembered by history.

These Senators are all traitors to America:

  • Bill Hagerty (TN)
  • Charles Grassley (IA)
  • Cindy Hyde-Smith (MS)
  • Cynthia Lummis (WY)
  • Dan Sullivan (AK)
  • Deb Fischer (NE)
  • James Lankford (OK)
  • James Risch (ID)
  • Jerry Moran (KS)
  • Jim Inhofe (OK)
  • John Barrasso (WY)
  • John Boozman (AR)
  • John Cornyn (TX)
  • John Hoeven (ND)
  • John Kennedy (LA)
  • John Thune (SD)
  • Joni Ernst (IA)
  • Josh Hawley (MO)
  • Kevin Cramer (ND)
  • Lindsey Graham (SC)
  • Marco Rubio (FL)
  • Marsha Blackburn (TN)
  • Mike Braun (IN)
  • Mike Crapo (ID)
  • Mike Lee (UT)
  • Mike Rounds (SD)
  • Mitch McConnell (KY)

 

Mitch McConnell is the worst of these traitors, trying to have it both ways:

The top Senate Republican gave his most damning condemnation of Donald Trump, but said the Senate had no power to convict an ex-president. He had refused to try Mr. Trump while he remained in office.

Senator Mitch McConnell said he believed that Donald J. Trump was undeniably guilty of a “disgraceful dereliction of duty” on Jan. 6, when he incited and then failed to do anything to halt a deadly assault on the Capitol.

“There’s no question — none — that President Trump is practically and morally responsible for provoking the events of the day,” Mr. McConnell, the Kentucky Republican and minority leader, declared Saturday afternoon in an anti-Trump diatribe so scathing that it could have been delivered by any of the nine House prosecutors seeking a conviction.

But minutes before he spoke, when it came time for the most powerful Republican in Washington to hold Mr. Trump to account on the charge of causing the riot, Mr. McConnell said his hands were tied. It could not be done, he argued. He voted to acquit.

“We have no power to convict and disqualify a former officeholder who is now a private citizen,” Mr. McConnell, who said he reached that conclusion after “intense reflection,” said as he delivered a lawyerly explanation on the limits of Senate power.

Offering his most damning condemnation of Mr. Trump to date, Mr. McConnell accused the former president of spreading lies about a stolen election that he knew would stoke dangerous acts by his followers — though the senator said little about his own refusal for weeks to recognize President Biden’s victory, which helped create the conditions for Mr. Trump’s claims to continue to spread, unchallenged by top Republicans.

(click here to continue reading McConnell, Denouncing Trump After Voting to Acquit, Says His Hands Were Tied – The New York Times.)

What a coward.

Trump Is A Loser

These opening sentences in a NYT article by Maggie Haberman and Michael Schmidt made me laugh:

With four weeks left in President Trump’s term, he is at perhaps his most unleashed — and, as events of the last few days have demonstrated, at the most unpredictable point in his presidency. He remains the most powerful person in the world, yet he is focused on the one area in which he is powerless to get what he wants: a way to avoid leaving office as a loser.

Get Out Trump

A Loser. That is how Trump will be remembered.

He has been a loser for most of his life, but managed to fool some people, some of the time.

I cannot wait for 2021, probably won’t be until spring, but sometime in 2021, Trump won’t be in the news every goddamn day. Glorious silence.

He hasn’t been doing the job of president for most of his term, his lack of work ethic has gotten more noticeable recently:

He is almost entirely disengaged from leading the nation even as Americans are being felled by the coronavirus at record rates. Faced with an aggressive cyberassault almost surely carried out by Russia, his response, to the degree that he has had one, has been to downplay the damage and to contradict his own top officials by suggesting that the culprit might actually have been China. He played almost no role in negotiating the stimulus bill that just passed Congress before working to disrupt it at the last minute. It is not clear that Mr. Trump’s latest behavior is anything other than a temper tantrum, attention-seeking or a form of therapy for the man who controls a nuclear arsenal

A Loser by circumstance, and a Loser by deeds. In other words, Trump is for ever and ever a Loser!

President-Elect Joe Biden

Joe Biden and David Axelrod Take in a Bulls Game

Whew, that’s a relief to say. Try it, “President-Elect Joe Biden”

Thanks to everyone sane who voted overwhelmingly for Joe Biden. I will admit Joe Biden was not in my top three candidates for the Democratic nomination, but I will give him a chance to be a good president. And really, let’s be honest, yesterday’s coffee grounds would be a better choice than Donald J. Trump having a second term.

January 20th, 2021 cannot arrive soon enough.

Trump Is Unsuited To Be President – Part the 543,678,654th

One Scared Little Man

These are not leadership qualities for an executive of a business, much less the president of a nation.

The lost days of summer: How Trump struggled to contain the virus – The Washington Post:

In Trump’s White House, there is little process that guides decision-making on the pandemic. The president has been focused first and foremost on his reelection chances and reacting to the daily or hourly news cycle as opposed to making long-term strategy, with Meadows and other senior aides indulging his impulses rather than striving to impose discipline.

What’s more, with polls showing Trump’s popularity on the decline and widespread disapproval of his management of the viral outbreak, staffers have concocted a positive feedback loop for the boss. They present him with fawning media commentary and craft charts with statistics that back up the president’s claim that the administration has done a great — even historically excellent — job fighting the virus.

A senior administration official involved in the pandemic response said, “Everyone is busy trying to create a Potemkin village for him every day. You’re not supposed to see this behavior in liberal democracies that are founded on principles of rule of law. Everyone bends over backwards to create this Potemkin village for him and for his inner circle.”

Government health officials are wary of saying anything publicly — even if they are merely speaking truth — that might be construed as contradicting the president or countering his rosy assessments.

One of the clearest examples of how fear and loyalty have infected the response came in Trump’s decision last month to begin formally withdrawing the United States from the World Health Organization. Many government officials hoped the president would not take that drastic step, but none had the courage to try forcefully to persuade him against a withdrawal by explaining that doing so would risk damaging not only the global response to the virus but also the U.S. response.
“Everybody is too scared of their own shadow to speak the truth,” said a senior official involved in the response.

What also has frustrated a number of the president’s allies and former aides is that he simply seems uninterested in asserting full leadership over the crisis, instead deferring to state leaders to make the more difficult decisions while using his presidential bully pulpit to critique their performances. He deputizes Pence to handle much of the actual communication with states and other stakeholders in the fight against the virus.
“If we want to return to school safely, we need not only adaptive safety practices at the schools but also lower amounts of virus in each community,” said Tom Bossert, a former White House homeland security adviser under Trump. “A suppression-level effort to shrink and not just mitigate the spread of covid requires a national strategy that includes standards and significant federal funding. Such a strategy is lacking right now.”

Amy McGrath’s Senate Campaign Is In Real Trouble

Col Sanders Day 1995

Maybe McConnell’s opponent will not be decided so quickly after all. I’m not in Kentucky, but if I was, I’d probably vote for Charles Booker in the primary, and whoever wins that in the general…

Sarah Jones of New York Magazine reports:

Remember Amy McGrath? Maybe you do. In 2018, the Kentucky Democrat was briefly famous for a viral campaign ad and an ultimately doomed campaign to represent her state’s Sixth Congressional District. A moderate and a former Marine fighter pilot, McGrath is the apotheosis of a particular Democratic electoral strategy: to win in a conservative state, dispatch a veteran with lukewarm politics. That strategy didn’t put McGrath in the House in 2018. But two years later, Senate Democrats tried it again, pitting McGrath against a top prize: Mitch McConnell.

Now she might be lucky to win her primary race.

McGrath faces a robust challenge from Charles Booker, the youngest Black legislator in the Kentucky House of Representatives. Booker has run to her left, and while McGrath holds a major fundraising advantage, Booker is gaining significant momentum ahead of the primary on June 23. Two of the state’s largest newspapers have endorsed him, and on Tuesday, Booker earned another major supporter. Alison Lundergan Grimes, who challenged McConnell in 2014, endorsed him over McGrath.

Enthusiasm might not be enough to propel Booker to victory over McGrath, but it’s a symptom of a bigger problem. National Democrats think they know what Kentucky wants, but Kentucky may disagree. A theory that recommends McGrath over Booker is one worth reconsideration, and not only because Booker marshals local support that McGrath lacks. Whatever momentum McGrath may have been capable of generating, she stifled. Her Senate run is riddled with embarrassments. She said she would have voted to confirm Brett Kavanaugh — a no-go area even for many conservative Democrats — before reversing herself in response to outrage. She blurred out the images of two eastern Kentucky coal miners after they threatened to sue her for using them in an ad without their permission. She characterized McConnell as an impediment “in the way of what Donald Trump promised,” a statement understood by many as a way to dodge public criticism of the president.

(click here to continue reading Amy McGrath’s Senate Campaign Is In Real Trouble.)

The national Democratic leadership often makes this mistake: choosing centrist, milk-toast Democrats instead of left wingers. You’d think they would have learned by now, but nope…