Nel's New Day

May 6, 2019

Back to the Swinging Doors of DDT’s Administration

People keep moving in an out of the administration:

Stephen Moore is the latest person to be fired before hired. Once a recommendation by Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) alongside Herman Cain for the Federal Reserve Board, he lasted longer than Cain. DDT said that he had pulled his name, but two hours earlier Moore had claimed that DDT was “full speed ahead” and that Moore is “all in.” The same thing happened to Cain who was positive that he was the nominee until DDT’s tweet told a different story. For the past month, Moore complained about a “sleaze” campaign that cited his writings from years ago. Yet the day before DDT dumped him, he talked about higher wages for women than for the “breadwinner” causing the “family instability.” Moore has much more going against him currently than his lack of experience, ignorance, racism, and misogyny. His leadership of the Koch-backed ALEC proved his austerity and anti-labor positions promoting income inequality, stagnant incomes, and suppressed wages.Ten years ago, Moore said, “I’m not even a big believer in democracy.”

Like Nixon, DDT is trying to politicize the Federal Reserve Board to lower interest rates and get re-elected. Nixon got his wish in a booming economy, but his scheme led to double-digit inflation.

Oil lobbyist David Bernhardt lasted four days without being investigated after he was confirmed as Interior Department Secretary from Senate Republicans. This coming week, both his investigator and the agency’s top lawyer face Senate confirmation hearings for their posts. The lawyer, who formerly advised the Koch brothers, advised both Bernhardt and his predecessor, Ryan Zinke, regarding legal and ethical issues as well as serving as chief public records officer. This connection erases any separation between politics and Freedom of Information in an agency that works hard to hide their actions. The lawyer said his “job is to protect the Secretary.”

Bernhardt is being investigating for involvement in policies affecting former clients. The Department admitted that Bernhardt’s staff deliberately failed to record his controversial meetings with representatives of fossil fuel, timber and water interests on his public calendar by citing “internal protocol.” They also confirmed he used a personal itinerary overwritten by his scheduling staff after denying that it happened for several months. Many entries were simply described as “internal” or “external.” An agency officer told Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD), chair of the Oversight Committee, that Bernhardt’s calendar was “deleted at the end of the day.” These practices also violate federal record laws. Later a Department spokeswoman said these practices didn’t exist.

The investigation in the Interior Department includes a total of six of DDT’s appointees who may have conflicts of interest by engaging with former employers or clients about the business of the Department. These include Assistant Secretary for Insular and International Affairs Doug Domenech, White House liaison Lori Mashburn, three top staffers at the Office of Intergovernmental and External Affairs, and the department’s former energy policy adviser. The Assistant Secretary kept interacting with his former employer, a conservative think tank, after he joined the Interior Department to discuss pending lawsuits that were settled in his former employer’s interests. Another investigation concerned a former lobbyist for the NRA who participated in issues about his former clients after he joined the Department. He also got recreational shooting opened up in the Sonoran Desert National Monument.

Mark Morgan is DDT’s pick for the head of ICE. He supports DDT’s wall on the southern border and denied that children were held in “cages.” Earlier this year, DDT has named Ronald Vitiello for the position but dropped him, saying that “we’re going in a tougher direction.” Matthew Albence, currently acting ICE director, had said that immigration detention is like “summer camp.” A former senior official said, “Matt never met an undocumented immigrant that he wouldn’t deport.”

Morgan is a good match for Kevin McAleenan, new acting DHS secretary, who promoted family separation to “protect families and children,” even separating legal asylum seekers at legal ports of entry. Last December, McAleenan broke the law by failing to notify Congress with 24 hours of the deaths of two children. Then he forced migrant families to sleep underneath an El Paso bridge in dangerous, unhealthy conditions. McAleenan was in charge of firing tear gas at asylum-seekers. His agents were also well known for ethnic profiling, illegal searches, seizure of religious items, and sometimes, murder and rape.

Julie Kirchner, former leader for the anti-immigration group Federation for American Immigration Reform, is DDT’s consideration to head U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services if DDT fires Francis Cissna in Stephen Miller’s purge of the federal government. Founded by a white supremacist, FAIR has been labeled a hate group. Currently Kirchner investigates individuals’ complaints against maladministration, especially that of public authorities for USCIS. If confirmed for the head of the agency, she would control the adjudication of applications for asylum, green cards, citizenship, and renewals for protective programs like DACA and TPS.

Patrick Shanahan remains acting as Secretary of Defense as more and more bad news comes from and about his former employer and friend, Boeing. The latest is Boeing’s admission that warning lights were “optional” on the 737 Max commercial jetliners that killed hundreds of people in the last few months. Earlier Boeing tried to blame pilots for their lack of performance. Now the company claims that the lights had no impact on the planes’ safety. Only 20 percent of ordered planes had this upgrade to activate the warning sensor. Neither pilots nor the FAA safety inspectors and supervisors were told about the lack of this safety feature. DDT has suggested that Boeing can solve all its problems with the 737 Max 8 jets by renaming them.

Less than two weeks ago, an internal investigation cleared Shanahan of conflicts of interest although Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson expressed three concerns: his decision to accept the problematic KC-46 tanker, his meeting with Space X CEO Elon Musk, and possible inappropriate sharing of classified information from Boeing programs. Shanahan also incessantly praised the Boeing 787 Dreamliner. Internal documents about the Dreamliner production as well as interviews with employees show the same kind of shoddy work on the 737 Max. A quality manager who pointed out problems was moved to other parts of the South Carolina plant where Boeing moved manufacturing despite a lack of comparable work force to that in the Seattle area. As a “right-to-work” state, South Carolina employees can be paid less than in Washington, and the state gave Boeing $1 billion. Fortunately, the Dreamliner has not had a crash yet although it was grounded for a time because of overheating batteries.

Last week, a Boeing 737 slid off a Florida runway into the St. Johns River.

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin is one of the subjects named by Sears in a lawsuit against its former CEO Edward Lampert, claiming that Mnuchin was part of the board members who helped Lampert and his hedge fund strip Sears of over $2 billion. Lampert and Mnuchin were roommates at Yale University and worked together at Goldman Sachs.

Jared Kushner has done his daddy-in-law proud with his extremely rare public appearance at the Times 100 Summit. He downplayed the Russian election interference from the Mueller report as “a couple of Facebook ads.” Kushner missed the part about the “expansive and expensive” Russian attack, as described by Steve Benen, including “public events, advertising, rallies, p.r. stunts, outreach to domestic allies, and an aggressive social-media component [that] reached as many as 126 million people.”

John Kelly, once DHS Secretary before becoming DDT’s chief of staff, has found a way to make money off his attitudes about immigrants and still avoid DDT. Kelly is now a board member of Caliburn International, the company owning the biggest detention centers for unaccompanied migrant youth. Caliburn received $222 million from taxpayers for a year, but their centers’ capacity has increased from 1,250 beds to 3,200 beds in just one detention center.

Scott Walker, loser as presidential candidate and Wisconsin’s most recent gubernatorial race, found a new job: he’s honorary chair of The Center for State-led National Debt Solutions—aka pusher for a constitutional balanced budget amendment. Ostensibly a Republican, Walker seems to be on the opposite side of congressional Republicans who are driving the national debt sky high. In every date, including Wisconsin, the infrastructure is collapsing while wealthy individuals and corporations received massive tax cuts.

Before he left Wisconsin, Walker put the state’s taxpayers on the hook for $4.1 billion to employ 13,000 people at Foxconn’s manufacturing plant. The deal was announced with DDT; a photo may show the only work DDT has done. Foxconn backed out of the manufacturing plant, and the number of employees dropped to 1,000 workers—about $4 million for each job. Manufacturing the product in China will “be more profitable” for Foxconn, according to one of its officials. Last year, the company hired 178 people, 82 fewer than needed for its first $10 million tax cut. On the campaign trail a week ago, DDT asked Wisconsin’s governor, Tony Evers, to be more “optimistic and hopeful” about Foxconn. Without re-negotiation, which Foxconn hasn’t supported, Wisconsin taxpayers are totally screwed.

Thanks to Walker and his Republicans, almost 15 percent of Wisconsin’s dairy farms aren’t milking or have disappeared. Despite oversupply, Walker tried to beat California in milk production and dropped milk prices by over 25 percent. Other losses included less immigrant farm labor and DDT’s trade war.

[Note: Those who wish to read more about the news above and/or factcheck the material may wish to use the links.]

 

 

December 8, 2018

The Ins and Outs of DDT’s World

After months of rumors that John Kelly, chief of staff to Dictator Donald Trump (DDT), would depart the White House, the latest comments that the two of them were no longer speaking bore fruit. DDT announced that Kelly would be out of the House by the end of the year, probably to be replaced by 36-year-old Nick Ayers, currently VP Mike Pence’s chief of staff. As with other DDT’s changes in personnel, he’s looking for someone who won’t disagree with him. Less than 17 months ago, which DDT called “almost two years,” optimists hoped that Kelly would curb DDT’s unruly impulses, but Kelly had his own problems of lying and refusing to back down on fact-checks of his falsehoods, specifically his attacks on Rep. Frederica S. Wilson (D-FL). Kelly also supported Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee and the family separation travesty at the U.S.-Mexico border. Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner will be delighted to see the last of Kelly, although he is also testifying in Robert Mueller’s investigation.

Other openings also give DDT a chance to appoint more high-level officials. With the failure of Matt Whitaker as acting AG because of his criminal activities, DDT found a more confirmable AG candidate with the same credentials as Whitaker—supports the firing of former FBI Director James Comey, wants to investigate Hillary Clinton, believes that Robert Mueller’s investigation is wrong, and has a pattern of handing out pardons for the president. Bill Barr, AG for George H.W. Bush, considers Jeff Sessions an “outstanding attorney general” and gave pardons for H.W.’s friends implicated in the Iran-Contra scandal.

Pro-lifers are also delighted that Barr opposes Roe v. Wade. He also supports harsh drug laws and mass incarceration. Barr can protect DDT with his belief that the executive branch should oppose attempt from Congress to obtain executive data, a position that Republicans will approve. Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) called Barr “a man whose writings endorse the anti-democratic notion that the president is effectively royalty, unaccountable to laws, the Constitution, or constraint by Congress.” He added that Barr “supported unconstitutional surveillance of Americans … and advocated for the use of torture.”

Another, far more unlikely, DDT appointment is Heather Nauert, State Department spokeswoman, to replace Nikki Haley as UN Ambassador for the United States. A former long-time employee for the Fox network, Nauert had no experience in foreign policy, government, or politics until DDT put her into the State Department in March 2017. Twenty years ago, she was hired among many other young female cable personalities to publicize the Bill Clinton scandal with Monica Lewinsky. Bill Shine, now White House deputy chief of staff for communications after he was forced to leave Fox for his handling of sexual misconduct, brought Nauert to Fox. She explained her popularity by saying, “It’s more interesting to see a young person talking about issues than a big, old, fat white guy.”

On the Fox network, sometimes as host of Fox & Friends, Nauert complained about migrant children bringing “disease” into the U.S., ranted about “illegals,” and lament As a talking head on Fox News, she peddled the Benghazi conspiracy, claimed that immigrant children are bringing “disease” into America, railed against “illegals,” and protested about “sharia law … now changing everything” in the United States because a Minnesota YMCA accommodated Somali-American Muslim girls during swimming class.

Nauert is known for her gaffes. Last June, she gave the D-Day invasion attacking German forces in World War II as an example of the “strong relationship with the government of Germany.” Nothing about the German reunification in 1990 and the end of the Cold War. Most recently, she posted a photograph of herself cheerfully smiling in front of the Saudi Royal Court while she represented the United States on a “fact-finding mission” into the torture and dismemberment U.S. resident and WaPo journalist orchestrated by Saudi’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salam. During the same time, her boss, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, also grinned and laughed with MBS. [visual]

In talking about why Nauert is “clearly not qualified” for the job, Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) said:

“Our foreign policy is a mess, and the president was laughed at in his last speech before the U.N. I’m not sure anybody would advise him that the way to correct all his mistakes is to put a Fox & Friends anchor as our top ambassador to the United Nations…. These days it seems that the most important qualification is that you show up on Donald Trump’s TV screen, and if you’re successful in that endeavor, then you seem to be a top candidate to get a whole bunch of top positions in the U.S. government.”

Peter Baker and Michael M. Grynbaum wrote about DDT’s reshaping the role of the ambassador, a position that became part of DDT’s Cabinet at Nikki Haley’s insistence:

“If confirmed, Ms. Nauert may serve more as a public face for the administration than as a policymaker, leaving Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and John R. Bolton, the president’s national security adviser, to dominate decision-making back in Washington. Many in Washington saw the appointment as a way for Mr. Bolton to consolidate power.”

Even an opinion piece in The Hill, a conservative publication, disagreed with DDT’s choice with the understatement that Nauert is not “one of America’s top diplomats,” that the choice is “downright silly.” Chances are good that DDT selected Nauert to downgrade the U.S. involvement in the UN.

Another new DDT nominee is Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley for the new chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. An odd choice, Milley disagrees with several DDT positions. Milley has said:

  • The duty of soldiers and officers is to the U.S. Constitution, not any political party or figure.
  • Russia and China are the most dangerous potential foes; “the faint clouds of a coming storm are visible on the horizon.”
  • Korea is “the most dangerous near-term threat to the U.S.”
  • Barring new transgender recruits from enlisting has no military rationale. Earlier this year, he testified year that he’s “received precisely zero reports of issues of cohesion, discipline, morale and all those sorts of things” as a result of the presence of transgender troops.

Like DDT, Milley does believe in a big military budget. He said:

“Failure to pass the budget, in my view as an American citizen and the chief of staff of the United States Army, constitutes professional malpractice.”

One of DDT’s judicial nominees, Thomas Farr, may lose a confirmation for the fourth time despite VP Mike Pence’s vote to advance him. Known for his racist positions on segregation and voter suppression, Farr alienated even Tim Scott (SC), the GOP’s only black senator, who wrote a letter to the Wall Street Journal to keep Farr from representing a region with 30 percent black population.

“I am saddened that in the editorial “Democrats and Racial Division” (Dec. 1) you attempt to deflect the concerns regarding Thomas Farr’s nomination to the federal bench. While you are right that his nomination should be seen through a wider lens, the solution isn’t simply to decry ‘racial attacks.’ Instead, we should stop bringing candidates with questionable track records on race before the full Senate for a vote. […]

“We must not seek to sow the seeds of discord, but rather embrace the power of unity. Simply put, if the Senate votes on a candidate that doesn’t move us in that direction, I will not support him or her. Our country deserves better.

After voting to confirm over 99 percent of DDT’s judicial nominees, many of them racist, Scott finally drew a line when he refused to follow his party to confirm Farr. Scott’s white cohorts have not reached that line yet; they continue to support nominees with “questionable track records on race.”

Robert Wilkie, VA Secretary, one of these “questionable” appointments, praised Confederate President Jefferson Davis as a “martyr to ‘The Lost Cause'” and an “exceptional man in an exceptional age.” He also called abolitionists who opposed slavery “radical,” “mendacious,” and “enemies of liberty” and said the Confederate “cause was honorable.”

Race isn’t the only line that the administration crosses:

  • Karen Budd-Falen, an ally of right-wing extremist Cliven Bundy who led an armed standoff with federal officials, is the deputy solicitor for Parks and Wildlife working on issues related to endangered species, wildlife refuges, and national monuments.
  • Adrian Zuckerman, nominee for Romanian ambassador, was sued for sexual harassment by his former secretary.
  • Lane Genatowski, nominee to head a cutting-edge research program in the US Department of Energy (DOE), is personally invested in various natural gas-based utilities and gas pipeline companies.
  • Andrew Smith, head of the Federal Trade Commission’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, has over 120 conflicts of interest after working for a law firm with a huge number of corporate clients including Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft, and Uber.

Almost all DDT employees are endangered species except his family. The latest one to surface is DDT’s vice president. Trump’s 2020 strategy meeting last Monday questioned whether Pence should be on the ticket because he “doesn’t add anything.” DDT has been questioning Pence’s loyalty for weeks, and advisors are pushing DDT to replace Pence with Nikki Haley. Pence has spent years lying for DDT, covering for him, and swallowing criticisms. But DDT has no loyalty to others: he just demands it for himself.

July 20, 2018

DDT’s Personnel: People Come, People Go

Filed under: Judiciary — trp2011 @ 11:27 PM
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The shiny object of Russia distracts the media from appointments of federal officials by Dictator Donald Trump (DDT), but he and the GOP senators continue to move the United States back into a 19th century known for its racism, sexism, and Puritanical Christian control.

Nominees:

Andrew Oldham, Texas’ Gov. Greg Abbott’s top legal adviser, slipped into the 5th U.S. Circuit Court with a 50–49 vote approval. DDT made him the fourth alumnus of Texas AG office to join the appeals court for Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi in the past 18 months. Oldham made news by refusing to say whether the famous desegregation case Brown v. Board of Education was correctly decided. About Oldham, the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights wrote:

“As his record clearly shows, he has worked to restrict and undermine voting rights, immigrant rights, women’s access to reproductive care, environmental protection, and gun safety. Even more concerning is his potential influence on current litigation in the Fifth Circuit challenging the Affordable Care Act. If confirmed, Mr. Oldham could be a deciding vote to undermine healthcare access for millions of people.”

At 40 years of age, Oldham will be making conservative decisions for up to a half century. He is the 23rd appeals court judge confirmed since DDT was inaugurated.

The Senate panel moved seven more judges to the Senate floor, four of the nominees for federal appeals courts:

  • Britt Grant (11th Circuit Court): helped draft an amicus brief to strike down the Voting Rights Act and another that challenged protection from deportation for people in the country with children who are citizens or lawful permanent residents.
  • David Porter (3rd Circuit Court): opposed the individual mandate for the Affordable Care Act and lacks support of one of his state’s (Pennsylvania) senators.
  • Marvin Quattlebaum (4th Circuit Court): has limited experience practicing before appellate courts.
  • Julius Richardson (4th Circuit Court): little opposition.
  • Roy Altman and Jude Rodolfo Ruiz (U.S. District Courts in Florida); Raul Arias-Marxuach (U.S. District Court for Puerto Rico)

Brian Benczkowski, confirmed to run the criminal division of the Department of Justice, previously worked for Alfa Bank, the biggest Russia bank and one with ties to Vladimir Putin. His new position gives him the opportunity to look at the Mueller investigation and the chance to delay or deny the approvals, according to Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI). Another problem would be if he passes along information to the Russians.

Kathy Kraninger, DDT’s nominee to head up the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, is his weapon to kill any remaining assistance for U.S. consumers. She lacks any experience or interest in consumer protection or financial services and resisted efforts to provide documentation about DDT’s “zero tolerance” immigration policies, the government response to Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, and HUD’s ongoing affordable housing problems when she oversaw a $250 billion budget within seven Cabinet departments and 30 federal agencies. Kraninger’s closeness to acting director and OMB Director Mick Mulvaney will keep him in charge of the agency he wants to eliminate. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) issued a 14-page report about Kraninger’s “record of failure” in an examination of the agencies she supervises for the OMB.

Withdrawn: 

Ryan Bounds, DDT’s nomination for the 9th Circuit Court, has been withdrawn for lack of votes and with DDT’s support. An assistant U.S. attorney for Oregon, Bounds failed to receive approval of either the state’s senators. Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) brought up Bounds’ earlier writing that ridiculed multiculturalism and criticized anti-racism groups. Bounds made the situation worse by omitting references to these writings in the materials he submitted for his confirmation.

Resignations:

Jennifer Arangio, a top National Security Council official, left after disagreeing with officials such as Stephen Miller over the immigration policy. Several members have bailed the agency after John Bolton took over. Below are some other DDT casualties up to the date of Scott Pruitt’s resignation. 

Jeffrey Tricoli, senior FBI official and expert in cyber intelligence, has left his position as one of the two leaders of the agency’s election-meddling task force. There is no indication of a replacement.

Four members of an advisory council for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) quit because of DDT’s “zero tolerance” policy, calling it “morally repugnant, counter-productive and ill-considered.” Two of the members sent additional letters condemning such policies as the Muslim bans, the border walls, and the elimination of the DACA program.

Scott Pruitt, the highest profile resignation in July thus far, left the EPA after a long list of ethics abuses and at least 18 federal investigations. DDT said that he will “go on to great things.” Pruitt may run for Senate or Oklahoma governor although his hopes for a presidential election may be gone. His charges for personal items, including some of his clothing, were phenomenal even in the time of DDT’s wastefulness. Pruitt’s mistreatment of his staff led to a large number of resignations from the EPA, some of them close associates he brought with him from Oklahoma. https://splinternews.com/were-still-finding-out-about-evil-shit-the-epa-did-unde-1827737702  The former EPA secretary’s legacy lives on in discovery of emails to Pruitt from his staff, attempting to protect him from the formaldehyde emissions of his new $9,500 desk. A few months later, Pruitt aides blocked public knowledge of an EPA report that the same chemical is “linked with leukemia, nose-and-throat cancer and other ailments.”

Replacements:

Andrew Wheeler, the new EPA acting director, continues the Environmental Plundering Agency’s destruction of lives: the most recent action by the former coal lobbyist is to pollute drinking water by rolling back coal ash storage regulations from 2015. The rule change also weakened testing standards for lead, cobalt, lithium, and molybdenum in adjacent waters. Highly toxic sludge from cooling coal ash that seeps into aquifers can contain arsenic, lead, mercury and chromium.

Bill Shine, new White House deputy chief of staff for communications and replacement for Hope Hicks, may be the most fitting appointment for DDT. Forced out of being co-president of the Fox network, Shine allegedly facilitated sexual harassment by Fox CEO Roger Ailes. He also covered up harassment complaints, persuaded employees to Reports about the scandals at Fox News indicate Shine was instrumental in keeping harassment complaints under wraps, rallying employees to protest accusers, and pushed women to confidential mediation so that the information would be kept secret. The Fox network is now the official state television outlet for the United States White House.

Darla Shine, Bill Shine’s wife, will also be welcome in the White House because of her racist tweets. For example, she questions why white people should be called racist for using the n-word if black people aren’t, defends the Confederate battle flag, and highlights black-on-white crime. She also defends DDT’s profane remarks African countries and his policy that Muslims be barred from the United States. Other of her tweets ridicule transgender people.

Shahira Knight, DDT’s tax adviser, has replaced Marc Short as the director of White House legislative affairs just as the senate faces confirmation hearings for Brett Kavanaugh as Supreme Court justice. Republican legislators said that she played an important role in getting the tax cuts for the wealthy and big business passed.

The clock is ticking down to future resignations. Chief of staff John Kelly is prime suspect for the next one, especially after rumors that, after DDT denied his own intelligence agencies in preference to Putin’s claim of not interfering in a U.S. election, Kelly told GOP legislators that they could protest DDT’s DDT’s false claims. Kelly has been making faces at DDT’s stupidity for months, and Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders can say only so many times that he wants a full breakfast instead of pastries. For a long time, people have said that Kelly will stay as long as he can help the nation, but DDT doesn’t listen to him. Eleven days from now, Kelly celebrates his one-year anniversary as DDT’s punching bag. He may pick that time to depart. On the other hand, he may be too stubborn to leave although Bill Shine is golden in the White House. [Right: A happy Kelly watches DDT leave for his weekend golfing vacation at Bedminster.]

DDT has said in the past that he doesn’t need a chief of staff. He certainly doesn’t make use of one. But it might be a way to bring back Hope Hicks, who he viewed “like a daughter,” or elevate Shine.

But then National Intelligence Director Dan Coats is also in trouble for defending the intelligence agencies and playing to the audience at the Aspen Security Forum. With DDT, you never know what direction the wind blows.

May 12, 2018

DDT: Weeks 67-68 – While We Paid Attention to Foreign Affairs

The last two weeks have seen monumental decisions by Dictator Donald Trump (DDT), including his withdrawal from the Iran deal and his upcoming talks with North Korean president, Kim Jong-Un. Another media focus has been the revelations of “pay to play,” as DDT’s personal lawyer Michael Cohen collected millions of dollars from huge businesses in exchange for access to DDT.

Before these events, however, the media spent several days protecting Sarah Huckabee Sanders after the fundraising correspondents’ dinner, largely maintaining that the media’s comedian Michelle Wolfe had unfairly attacked the White House press secretary. The truth she told about the media being instrumental in electing DDT probably infuriated them.

“He has helped you sell your papers and your books and your TV. You helped create this monster and now you are profiting from him.”

Not all the media criticized Wolfe;  New Yorker’s Masha Gessen’ critique of the media was as clear as that expressed by Wolfe.

All the warm fuzzy expressions about Sanders disappeared, however, after she protected Kelly Sadler for her vile comment about Sen. John McCain’s (R-AZ) objection to Gina Haspel, nominee for CIA director, that it was irrelevant because “he’s dying anyway.” Sanders didn’t object to Sadler’s comment–just to the leak. objection was not to the comment, but to a leak. Sadler made her statement three days after Melania Trump kicked off her “Be Best” program, promoting kindness in children.

Chief of staff John Kelly is also taking some heat from the media. Trying to gain DDT’s support after calling him an “idiot,” Kelly went on NRP to lambaste immigrants from Mexico because they are poorly educated, don’t speak English, come from rural areas, and cannot assimilate into society. Unfortunately for Kelly, genealogical researcher Monica Pattangall researched his family tree. Seven of Kelly’s eight great-grandparents immigrated to the U.S., and three of Kelly’s four great-grandfathers were unskilled workers. The fourth was a cooper. They came to the United States because they wanted a better future for themselves and their children. Great-grandfather Giuseppe Pedalino could not read, write, or speak English, and great-grandfather John Marco also did not speak English for at least ten years. Marco and his second wife, who could not speak English for over 30 years, lived with their daughter, son-in-law, and grandchildren, one of them the chief of staff’s mother. Kelly’s family has all the characteristics that he doesn’t want in immigrants, but he became the top aide to the man elected as president of the United States. Kelly also claims that women are more emotional than men, ironic considering his bosses temperament of his boss, and wanted the ex-wives of then-White House staff Secretary Rob Porter to talking about their abuse.

After almost total silence for other a year, First Lady Melania Trump launched “Be Best,” her program to help the vulnerable children. “Children deserve every opportunity to enjoy their innocence,” Ms. Trump. She expresses a concern about the well-being of children and released a booklet complete with her photograph—that was copied from a 2014 Federal Trade Commission pamphlet by President Obama and his wife, Michelle, called, “Talking to Your Kids.” Melania Trump fought back against the criticism with a statement against what she called “baseless accusations” on “a day meant to promote kindness and positive efforts on behalf of children.

On the same day that she touted kindness to children, AG Jeff Sessions announced that ICE will separate every family who tries to cross the border, including ripping infants and toddlers away from their mothers. Last fall, HHS discovered that they had lost almost 1,500 children that ICE had taken from their parents. As if that wasn’t enough cruelty to children, on the same day DDT asked Congress to shred the $9 billion Children’s Health Insurance Program by $7 billion, removing almost 80 percent of funding earmarked for children living close to poverty in the United States.

Teacher of the Year Mandy Manning has a different perspective on immigrants and took the opportunity of her award acceptance at the White House to hand letters from her students to DDT. She teaches English in Spokane (WA) to refugee and immigrant high school students when they first arrive in the United States. She wrote in her application:

“In the current political climate, anti-immigrant and anti-refugee rhetoric is rampant. As soon as my students arrive, they are afraid they will have to leave. Most of my students come to the U.S. seeking safety, but they don’t always feel safe here. This makes it hard for them to share and learn from others….

I am here for refugee and immigrant students, for the kids in the gay-straight alliance, and for all the girls.”

The letters expressed their feelings of happiness to contribute to their new country and the shame of having from the nation’s leader speaking poorly of them. During her acceptance appearance, Manning wore activist pins for LGBTQ, trans, and women’s rights. In his speech, DDT refuted Manning’s message by talking about the importance of teaching CITIZENS (in all caps on the teleprompter) instead of Manning’s students.

Another ICE tactic is stealing money. Six months ago, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) took over $41,000 in cash without a civil asset forfeiture case from a U.S. citizen who saved the money for years for a medical clinic in Nigeria. They refuse to return the money until she agrees not to sue them for taking her money. Taking money from innocent people is so prevalent that state and local governments take billions of dollars from people without charging them with crimes.

Perhaps DDT should have kept his former HHS Secretary Tom Price. Now Price is agreeing with the CBO that repealing the health care mandate “drives up the cost for other folks within that market.” DDT’s policies are also driving up the number of people without health insurance.

Much was made of the 49 questions that investigator Robert Mueller wanted to asked DDT. DDT tweeted, “No questions on Collusion,” but he ignored the one about cooperation between the Russian government and DDT’s campaign. Largely ignored, however, is that DDT’s lawyer Jay Sekulow wrote them. The questions are listed here.

People may be pleased that Cambridge Analytica, the software company that helped DDT win electoral votes, is no more. The closure, however, can only benefit the company: it registered the new company, Emerdata Limited, last year and now can no longer be sued.

“Trade wars are good and easy to win,” according to DDT, except when they aren’t. Caught up in global hostility toward him, DDT has postponed more tariffs against steel and aluminum. Details here.

DDT’s personal physician Harold Bornstein, fed up with DDT, stated that DDT personally dictated the 2015 letter ostensibly from Bornstein to praise DDT’s fantastic good health. The letter came after DDT consistently attacked his opponent, Hillary Clinton, with the statement that she wasn’t healthy enough to be president because he will do anything to win anything. Borstein told the story after DDT’s longtime bodyguard raided the doctor’s office and took all DDT records with no signed form or request from DDT and told Bornstein to take down a picture of Bornstein and DDT.

DDT’s tweet that threatened to remove credentials from the press came immediately after Fox & Friends said he should do just that. During his campaign, DDT said he would never remove credentials, but his mind now equates negative news with his concept of “fake news.”

Any infrastructure plan has died as all its supporters have left the White House.

Louisiana may start a trend of increasing the number of the homeless by moving old people out of nursing homes. Letters went out to 37,000 Medicaid recipients, 20,000 of them in nursing homes, telling them that they could lose their benefits. The closure of nursing homes could also leave 25,000 people unemployed. In the richest country in the world, the wealthy and huge corporations are gaining trillions of dollars from the GOP tax cut while old people are turned out on the streets.

Only Charlotte (NC) is admitting that it is willing to host the 2020 GOP convention; several of the others have rejected the event because of concerns about violence and security concerns.

Drugs stocks shot upward this past week after DDT broke another campaign promise to lower drug costs. DDT already put a drug company executive in charge of Department of Health and Human Services and now announced that he won’t permit Medicare to negotiate prices. He claimed that he would lower drug costs by encouraging use of generic prescriptions that often don’t work as well as the original, promoting competition in pricing, calling on other countries to increase their prices—in short, doing nothing about skyrocketing prices that are gouging patients. Pharmaceutical companies have benefited from the $26 million they spent last year in lobbying to keep their high prices.

Senate Judiciary Committee chairman, Chuck Grassley (R-IA), told Supreme Court justices considering retirement that they should immediately announce so that the current Senate can replace that person before the November midterm election. He seems to be concerned that Democrats would use GOP tactics to hold up confirmation hearings for GOP nominations.

Believe it or not, to be continued!

February 6, 2018

Stay Involved – Make the U.S. a ‘Beacon’ for All

Filed under: Donald Trump — trp2011 @ 10:56 PM
Tags: , , , ,

Every day I read the news—the hopeful pieces and the disgusting hatred that people spew out against anyone who threatens the male white power of the United States. With the increasing loss of democracy in the nation, more and more people say they can no longer follow the news because it is so upsetting. At the same time, inequality of classes—economic, racial, gender, etc.–rapidly grows.

Within the past week, I have heard two statements that make me want to crawl into a hole and avoid any media. Last week, GOP political strategist said that Donald Trump could kill a baby at a rally and it would not take away from his popularity. The worst thing about what Wilson said is that he is right—nothing seems to take away from the support of Trump’s base. His horrific behavior has been so normalized that he can do anything he wants to destroy people and the country. His base only wants to keep the United States for only white people and women in subservience.

The second statement came from Trump’s chief of staff John Kelly today when he talked about the people who were brought into the United States by adults when they were children. He accused those afraid to identify themselves to the government as undocumented of being “too lazy to get off their asses” to sign up for DACA. (Never mind hat Kelly’s boss, Donald Trump, spends less than ten hours a week on his job as president and occupies this time bragging about himself while goading his base into destroying the constitution.)

I remember when the young people were offered the opportunity to register their undocumented status in exchange for getting work permits and going to school. There were long discussions of what would happen if an administration would reject this status and deport them because they had been open enough to identify themselves. Now their fears have come to pass. Thomas Homan, the acting director of ICE, said that anyone in the country illegally would be targeted for deportation even if they had not committed a crime.

Last fall, Donald Trump took away the last vestige of safety for DACA recipients so that he could use them as hostages for the wall he wants between Mexico and the United States. Trump promised on his campaign that Mexico would pay for the wall, but their president made clear that they would not give Trump that money. Immediately after his inauguration, Trump begged Mexican president, Enrique Peña Nieto, not to tell press that Mexico won’t pay for wall. Today, Trump said he would “love a [government] shutdown” in order to get his wall in exchange for letting the DACA recipients stay in the country. As Trump has consistently proved, his promises are worth nothing.

DACA recipients have been losing their right to be in the United States since he ended his program last September, the deadline is March 5 for everyone. When Trump campaigned, he said he wanted to deport the “bad hombres,” and he obsessively talks about the El Salvadoran gang MS-13 as a demonstration of dangers from immigration. Yet ICE daily picks up and deports immigrants who contribute to the betterment of the United States and have caused no problems in their decades of living in the United States. At the same time, ICE makes immigrants afraid to go to the police in opposition to gang violence because the immigrants will be deported instead of the gang members.

The numbers of people in poverty and without health insurance grew the last year, and homelessness increased for the first time since 2010. Hate crime hit a five-year high during Donald Trump’s campaign, and the number of hate crimes rose for the second straight year in 2017. Trump’s policies are bad for the United States.

Michael Gerson, former speech writer for George W. Bush, blames the Republicans’ weakness for our disappearing democracy:

“With the blessing of Republican leaders, the lickspittle wing of the GOP is now firmly in charge…. The nearly uniform cowardice among elected Republicans is staggering. One is left wishing that Obamacare covered spine transplants. The Republican-led Congress is now an adjunct of the White House. The White House is now an adjunct of Trump’s chaotic will….

“Trump has made a practice of forcing people around him to lower their standards and abandon their ideals before turning against them when their usefulness ends. His servants are sucked dry of integrity and dignity, then thrown away like the rind of a squeezed orange. Who does Trump’s bidding and has his or her reputation enhanced? A generation of Republicans will end up writing memoirs of apology and regret….

“For Republicans, what seemed like a temporary political compromise is becoming an indelible moral stain…. By defending Trump’s transgressions, by justifying his abuses, Republicans are creating an atmosphere in which corruption and cowardice thrive….”

For the past 25+ years, I have picked up our pet dogs’ excrement. Lack of contamination is vital in preventing infectious diseases such as cholera, typhoid, and polio. Without paying attention to sanitation, people get sick. In the same way, people have to pay attention to the excrement pouring out of the Donald Trump administration—the lack of care for all human beings that it daily exhibits.

Much as I would like to avoid the sick statements made by people like John Kelly and Donald Trump and their followers, I’ll keep trying to expose the excrements. On just this one day, however, I need to vent my frustrations as Donald Trump uses his power to make ugly a place formerly described as a shining light, “a beacon of hope and a source of inspiration for people everywhere.”

Jonathan Rauch and Benjamin Wittes, members of the conservative Brookings Institute, have called for a total boycott of the Republican party because the GOP support of Donald Trump is “a threat to democratic values and the rule of law.” (People who want to save the United States should read the entire article.) As a progressive, I believe that the nation needs a diversity of ideas created by more than one party. I also agree with the authors of this article when they write:

“The Republican Party, as an institution, has become a danger to the rule of law and the integrity of our democracy. The problem is not just Donald Trump; it’s the larger political apparatus that made a conscious decision to enable him. In a two-party system, nonpartisanship works only if both parties are consistent democratic actors. If one of them is not predictably so, the space for nonpartisans evaporates. We’re thus driven to believe that the best hope of defending the country from Trump’s Republican enablers [is to] vote mindlessly and mechanically against Republicans at every opportunity, until the party either rights itself or implodes (very preferably the former)….

“Republicans, even moderate ones, are reluctant to cross party lines. Party, today, is identity. But in the through-the-looking-glass era of Donald Trump, the best thing Republicans can do for their party is vote against it.

“We understand, too, the many imperfections of the Democratic Party. Its left is extreme, its center is confused, and it has its share of bad apples. But the Democratic Party is not a threat to our democratic order. That is why we are rising above our independent predilections and behaving like dumb-ass partisans. It’s why we hope many smart people will do the same.”

If my blog goes dark for a few days, it is because of events beyond my control. For those of you who follow Nels New Day, thank you. I will be back.

October 22, 2017

Generals, ‘Adults in the Room,’ Go to War

Filed under: War — trp2011 @ 7:33 PM
Tags: , , , , , ,

Generals! Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) loves them. Since his inauguration, he’s fired lots of people–James Comey, Sean Spicer, Anthony Saramucci, Reince Priebus, Sebastian Gorka, and even his beloved Keith Schiller. But the generals have stayed. DDT campaigned on opposition to a big military presence abroad, but now he’s handed over his entire foreign policy to them and the Pentagon unless he’s trying to undo something like the Iran or Paris agreement.

Who are DDT’s generals?

Gen. Jim “Mad Dog” Mattis, Secretary of Defense, once said about the Taliban, “It’s quite fun to shoot them, you know. It’s a hell of a hoot. It’s fun to shoot some people.” He also told soldiers in Iraq, “Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everybody you meet.” Mattis defended himself after bombing a wedding party by saying, “How many people go to the middle of the desert… to hold a wedding 80 miles from the nearest civilization?” He was “retired” from his command five months early when he wanted to take out an Iranian oil refinery that would have set off another war. Mattis promoted John Kelly to brigadier general in Iraq, but Kelly never fought in Afghanistan.

DDT has given Mattis unprecedented authority to set troop levels and launch airstrikes around the world—and Congress doesn’t stop DDT.

Gen. H.R. McMaster, now national security adviser, “liberated” Tal Afar (Iraq) only to have it overcome by sectarian violence a year later and one of the first Iraqi cities that ISIS took. He considers the war in the Middle East “generational” (aka unending). He’s willing to start a “preventive” war against North Korea, just as George W. Bush against Iraq.

Gen. John Kelly was seen as a force for good when he became chief of staff, restraining much of DDT’s impulsivity except for his offensive tweets—until the past week when he decided to defend his boss with a collection of lies and smears. After DDT faced criticism for his offensive remarks to the widow of fallen Sgt. La David Johnson in Niger, Kelly came to a press conference to give his side. It wasn’t pretty, especially when he called a black U.S. representative from Florida, Frederica Wilson, an empty barrel—insinuating that she was too loud and too stupid to have a role in the government.

Even worse, Kelly blatantly lied about his experience with Wilson at the dedication of a new FBI field office in Miami. He claimed that she bragged about getting the funding at the ceremony, but the building was funded before she was elected. Kelly’s speech was wrong about a fallen FBI agents’ name and his length of service, and he quoted the price of the building at $20 million instead of its cost of $194 million. A video of the event shows Wilson talking about getting the building named for two killed FBI agents and gave credit to two Republican members of Congress for their participation.  She also asked law-enforcement officials to stand so “we can applaud you and what you do” before she said,

Kelly said that he was “stunned” and “heart-broken” that the “empty barrel” would listen in on a “sacred” conversation between the president and the widow. Wilson was with Myeishia Johnson because she is a family friend, and Kelly obviously heard the conversation because he knew what was said. Like DDT who failed to use the name of Johnson’s widow, Kelly never named Rep. Wilson while he was sneering at her.

In his speech, Kelly attacked Gold Family Khizr and Ghazala Khan for appearing at the Democratic convention. Yet he ignored DDT’s attacks on that Gold Family and DDT’s comment about Sen. John McCain that he “prefers people who aren’t captured.” Kelly lamented that people no longer “honor” women while defending a sexual predatory. His anger about politicizing the war dead ignored DDT’s initiation of the political involvement of the subject after a simple question about the mission itself.

Presented with the truth about Kelly’s false statements about Wilson, Sarah Huckabee Sanders said that people should not disagree with a “four-star Marine general.”

Kelly’s background:

  • While in charge of the Guantanamo Bay Detention facility, he undermined President Obama’s attempts to close the facility.
  • He opposed and publicly criticized the integration of women into military ground combat units, arguing it would lead to lower standards.
  • He defended “enhanced interrogation techniques” (aka torture) such as waterboarding and rectal feeding and dismissed the criticisms of human rights groups as “foolishness.”
  • He testified in support of an officer caught urinating on Talibani corpses.
  • He supports the imprisonment of terror suspects without trial.
  • He supports the war on drugs and opposes legalization or decriminalization of any drugs, including marijuana.
  • Kelly says that the military men and women are the best one percent that this nation produces.
  • While head of the Department of Homeland Security, he ordered immigration officials to portray undocumented immigrants swept up in mass raids as criminals to support the claims of raids motivated by public safety concerns.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) is supporting DDT’s three hawks in declaring war in Niger. He explained that counterterrorism will move to “status-based targeting,” meaning that “lethal force” can be used even if “they don’t have to present an immediate threat.” Decision-making will also be done in the field instead of the White House, according to Graham. Mattis and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson plan a public hearing the evening of October 30 to gin up people in the U.S. for DDT’s war.

As in the war on Iraq, the reason may be “follow the oil.” In late 2016, the discovery of large crude oil deposits in Niger led to an interest building a pipeline to send the oil to Nigeria and then export it. The oil in Nigeria is owned by Western corporations such as Royal Dutch Shell and Chevron with Shell providing a private militia of over 1,200 soldiers. After the destruction of Libya, Nigeria became the top oil-producing African country, supplying one-fifth of the U.S. needs. Although one reason for putting Niger on the travel ban was the terrorist group, Boko Haram, it is mostly confined to Nigeria and Cameroon with a small part in southeastern Niger–not in Chad. Nigeria’s local government officials tend to support the Boko Haram.

DDT has a double reason for a war: he can take over the oil production, and he might decrease his disapproval rating, growing every week. Attacking North Korea and/or Iran would be dangerous because they would fight back. Niger has a corrupt leader, and the people are extremely poor with an annual $415 income. DDT is already getting ready for war by signing an executive order to drastically expand his ability to call back any retired service members to service. The Air Force is recalling at least 1,000 retired pilots per year to active duty.

The movement toward war was set into action on September 24 when DDT put Chad onto his travel ban for harboring terrorists although it was fighting them. By the beginning of October, Chad began pulling out its 2,000 well-trained forces out of Niger. On October 4, an under-armed U.S. military force with no air cover was sent into an ambush. Four people died, and DDT plans to declare war.

On her MSNBC show, Rachel Maddow drew lines between these recent events—not as a causal conspiracy theory but with attention to the timing of what has happened. Critics from both sides of the political spectra criticized her, one person saying that Chad was fighting Boko Hiram and not ISIS. Fox network complained about the media “putting in their own theories.” Yet both groups are tangentially linked. Maddows’ two show segments on the issue are here.

DDT loves power, and he gets it from being “commander in chief.” Last month he called for a Fourth of July parade filled with military hardware to show the nation’s “military might” to “top” the one he saw in France on Bastille Day.

The three generals in traditionally civilian positions want war and secrecy, and they achieve their goal by creating a massive fear of foreign terrorism. They control the military and the war policy, making sure that DDT follows their orders to increase the defense expenditures at the cost of people in the United States. DDT the bully finds his generals “sacred” and thinks that the war will make him more popular the way it seemed to do for George W. Bush—briefly. The United States, run by “adults” and permanently at war.

As DDT’s distraction of smearing Wilson in his tweets—the most recent one today—continues, watch for the saber-rattling of his generals and GOP congressional hawks.

October 21, 2017

DDT: Week Thirty-nine – Lack of Character

Today ends National Character Week. A resolution from Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) included the statement that “The … integrity of our people … defines the soul of our Nation.” DDT began the week with a collection of lies and character assassinations in covering for the loss of four soldiers in the disastrous operation in Niger. Asked about the background for the deaths, DDT made the despicable statement that Barack Obama and “most” other presidents don’t both to call families of U.S. soldiers killed in the line of duty and then lied when he said he called every family. Since then, the White House frantically sent  letters.

Criticized for telling the widow that her husband “must’ve known what he signed up for,” DDT lied about having made that statement despite witnesses. DDT then politicized the situation by exploiting Chief of Staff John Kelly’s having lost his son in combat in 2010, despite Kelly’s past refusal to talk about his son. Reporters asked about the missing $25,000 that he has promised some families but not others with little satisfaction.

Other questions were left unanswered such as why the mission was considered safe but failed so miserably and why the body of Sgt. La David Johnson was left behind for two days and discovered by Nigerian troops a mile away from the ambush. No one satisfactorily answered the question about DDT putting Chad on the travel ban, an act that may have caused the mission’s failure because well-trained Chad soldiers left Niger. Fighting between Chad’s armed forces and Boko Haram dates back to 2015. During the peak of the conflict Chad stationed 2,000 troops in Niger to counter the militant group.  Another question about Niger is whether U.S. troops pursued ISIS members across the Mali border without approval.

The lack of integrity and “character” continued when Chief of Staff John Kelly lied in defense of DDT and smeared Rep. Frederica Wilson about her comments at the dedication of a new FBI building in Miramar (FL).

DDT’s leadership failures since his inauguration started with his authorization of a late January mission in Yemen where Navy SEAL William “Ryan” Owens died and refuses to take responsibility for his actions. This week, he defined his presidency by saying about other failures, “And I’m not going to blame myself.” DDT blames the GOP Congress, President Obama, Hillary Clinton, James Comey, Jeff Sessions, John McCain, Bob Corker, the press, and a host of others. That is DDT’s “character.”

Phil Mudd, former Deputy Director of the CIA’s CounterTerrorist Center and the FBI’s National Security Branch, talked about DDT’s claiming himself the victim, beginning with the day after his inauguration when DDT stood before stars for intelligence officers killed in the line of duty and talked about the size of his inauguration crowd. “Nine months later,” Mudd said, “this guy has the empathy of a cockroach.” San Antonio Spurs Head Coach Gregg Popovitch said, “This man in the Oval Office is a soulless coward who thinks that he can only become large by belittling others.”

When the Benghazi victims came home (left) and when the Niger victims arrived (right).

DDT is bragging about the capture of Raqqa from ISIS, but the militants have dispersed without being crushed just as the Taliban and al Qaeda were 16 years ago. ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi left with his fighters to set up control elsewhere. ISIS affiliates remain active in Libya, Mali, Afghanistan, the Philippines, and elsewhere. Terrorists took control after 2001 because of bad leadership; the same thing can happen again.

DDT’s week has a number of other failures:

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said that DDT can’t revoke a network’s license based on content, as he threatened.

DDT lacks proof that Iran is dealing with North Korea; he plans to “instruct” his intelligence agencies to go back to find the evidence that he wants.

The IRS plans to enforce the healthcare act by fining people without insurance, despite DDT’s false declaration that “Obamacare is dead.” The Affordable Care Act is still the law of the land, but DDT claimed,“‘Obamacare is finished. It’s dead. It’s gone. You shouldn’t even mention it. It’s gone. There is no such thing as Obamacare anymore.” Perhaps he would like to call the current healthcare, suffering because he has badly sabotaged it, “Trumpcare.” Whatever healthcare is called, DDT’s “tweaks” is creating more uninsured: the percentage of uninsured U.S. adults has steadily grown since DDT’s inauguration to 12.3 percent, up 1.4 points since the end of 2016 and the highest recorded since the last quarter of 2014.

The CIA corrected DDT’s CIA Director Mike Pompeo’s lies about how the intelligence community determined that “Russian meddling that took place did not affect the outcome of the election.” A CIA spokesman Ryan Trapani said the CIA concluded that Russia tried to influence the presidential election but they didn’t know whether it was successful. (Rumors suggest that Pompeo could become Secretary of State if Rex Tillerson were to quit.)

DDT’s nominee for drug czar, Rep. Tom Marino (R-PA), withdrew again after Washington Post and 60 Minutes reported about Marino’s championing a bill protecting pharmaceutical companies that flood the country with opioids. The law weakened DEA enforcement efforts against drug distribution companies supplying doctors and pharmacists who peddled narcotics to the black market. Marino, who received big contributions from the drug industry, had withdrawn from the nomination on May 4 until he was re-offered the job on September 2.

Summer Zervos, who accused DDT of sexual harassment, has subpoenaed all documents from his presidential campaign about sexual harassment and assault allegations to show how DDT tried to discredit her and the other accusers. DDT’s lawyers maintain that a president cannot be sued.

Seventeen states are suing Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos because the her refusal to punish predatory career programs “leaves students vulnerable to exploitation and fraud.” DeVos overturned rules, repeatedly upheld by courts despite legal challenges by the for-profit college industry, that cut off federal financial aid funding to career college programs providing only low salaries for students with heavy debt. She is also being sued for rolling back the regulation allowing students to apply for loan forgiveness if they were defrauded by for-profit colleges and for her tougher standard of evidence in campus sexual assault cases.

U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson in Hawaii has blocked DDT’s third travel ban because it failed to show nationality alone makes a person a greater security risk. Maryland is also blocking the ban to people from Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen; the restrictions against North Korea and Venezuela remain because they were not part of the lawsuit.

Seattle and Portland (OR) can continue suing DDT for removing federal funding from so-called sanctuary cities despite DDT’s attempt to dismiss their lawsuit DDT is defending an almost identical lawsuit in a federal court in California.

Anti-pipeline protesters charged with felonies may use the “necessity” defense of confronting climate change as justification in court. They can call scientists as witnesses and give evidence of harms as justification to protect people for their violations of the law.

DDT’s pardon of former Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio rules out punishment, but he keeps his criminal record, according to U.S. District Judge Susan R. Bolton.

Sens. Patty Murray (D-WA) and Lamar Alexander (R-TN) attempt to stabilize the healthcare market after DDT’s sabotage has faced six different positions from DDT. Two weeks ago, DDT asked Alexander for the deal, and the White House participated in the compromise. Within a day, DDT was against, for, against, for, and finally against the bipartisan agreement that attempts to undo the damage from DDT on the healthcare system. The goal of the bill is to reduce the inflated rates for policy premiums planned after DDT withdrew any subsidy payments to insurance companies.

Two former presidents—Barack Obama and George W. Bush—gave speeches last week about bigotry, divisiveness, partisan conflicts, “conspiracy theories and outright fabrication.” Bush attacked “nationalism distorted into nativism” and said the nation has “forgotten the dynamism that immigration has always brought to America.” President Obama said, “You can’t govern people if you win by dividing them.” White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said that references about politicians sowing anger and division did not apply to DDT because President Obama and W. didn’t use his name.

DDT broke into his incessant tweets against black athletes with one accusing his FBI of treason: “Workers of firm involved with the discredited and Fake Dossier take the 5th. Who paid for it, Russia, the FBI or the Dems (or all)?” His explanation for his tweets, including today’s continuation of “Crooked Hillary,” is that “you have to keep people interested.”

A Gallup poll shows that economic confidence dropped from 16 in March—two months after DDT’s inauguration—to a minus one, a drop of 17 points.

DDT’s defense of his disrespect in the Niger situation and Kelly’s smearing of a black female member of Congress shiny media pennies to distract people from the rapid movement of a budget through Congress that destroys the social welfare net—including Medicaid and Medicare—while adding $1.5 trillion to the debt. Republicans brag about how this legislation leads to massive tax cuts for large corporations and the wealthiest people in the nation. Always look under distractions—such as black athletes or a black congresswoman—to find the GOP’s frightening actions.

Craziest thing of the week? Donald Trump, Jr. posted this fake Time cover of his father despite the magazine’s demand that DDT stop putting out fake Time covers of him.

September 22, 2017

DDT’s UN Speech:  World War III, Anyone?

Voters for Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) claim that they prefer him because he can get them jobs and make them well-off. They like his love of violence even better. At rallies, his audience cheered when he told his supporters to physically attack any protesters and promised to pay for the lawyer if his supporter would attack a black protester. The audience yells in approval when he bullies, threatens, and humiliates any opposition—women, people with disabilities, people of color, anyone who criticizes him. His proposed budget cuts taking money from helping people to vastly increasing the military expenditures show how little he cares for humanity.

During his campaign, DDT endorsed torture and applauded waterboarding. As president, he retweets videos of himself physically attacking others, the most recent a doctored video of his golf ball hitting Hillary Clinton in the back and forcing her to fall. In a speech to Long Island (NY) police officers, he called on them to be physically brutal and then issued directives to send military surplus weapons to local law enforcement. DDT’s first pardon was in admiration for a man who physically abused thousands of people, primarily minorities, under the guise of being a county sheriff.

DDT’s executive orders lead to physical abuse, for example the Muslim ban and the direction to immigration to drag all Latinx into deportation, including those who contribute to society and who are U.S. citizens. He wants to take health care from tens of millions, leading to illness and death, and incarcerate far more people, partly because of misguided perspective of drug use. In less than eight months since his inauguration, DDT has called for U.S. military action—or actually perpetuated this—in several Middle Eastern countries (especially Iran), Venezuela, Mexico, North Korea, Libya, Pakistan, and probably other places that I’ve missed.

The only places that escape DDT’s ire are Russia, Israel, and countries where his name is on a building. He even admires the violence that other countries wreak on people in the U.S. He denies that he apologized to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for the security force’s violence while Erdogan was in the U.S. Yet this past week, DDT effusively praised his “friend,” Erdogan, and gave him “high marks” for “running a very difficult part of the world.” DDT described his introduction of Erdogan as “a great honor and privilege” just hours after Erdogan supporters beat up protesters at an Erdogan speech.

Of the foreign leaders from 32 countries that DDT has hosted, 15 are from nations scoring in the bottom half of the 112 democracies measured by Global Democracy Ranking or from nations that have autocratic rule.

DDT’s speeches and interviews during the UN General Assembly demonstrate his need to express violence and insult world leaders. Instead of using diplomacy, he promised to eradicate North Korea at any provocation, as if killing over 25 million people—not to mention the ten million residents of Seoul, South Korea—was no problem. In the same speech, he attacked Iran by threatening to break it. Unlike any other U.S. president who has spoken before UN representatives, DDT delights in violence brutality as a reflection of his power.

DDT loses his favorability rating in the United States, the countries throughout the world—except for Israel and Russia—have an increasingly unfavorable view of him. Without positive views from those two countries, the averages for favoring him (50 percent) and trusting the U.S. (27 percent) would have been far lower. By August, confidence in the U.S. president to do the right thing in international affairs had dropped from 64 percent for President Obama to 22 percent to DDT. If it’s any consolation to DDT, George W. Bush’s ratings were worse by six years after he was first inaugurated, but DDT still has over three years to get there. Detailed comparisons of the last three presidents are available here.

Events at the UN may have brought down his favorable ratings even more. His “joke” about the collapse of Venezuela fell flat:

“The problem in Venezuela is not that socialism has been poorly implemented, but that socialism has been faithfully implemented.”

After four seconds, he received a very tepid response.

DDT the ignorant appeared when he created a new African country—Nambia. In fact, he praised their health care. There are the countries of Namibia, Zambia, and Gambia; DDT could have meant any one of them. But there is no Nambia—yet. With this speech, DDT made the United States the joke of this year’s UN General Assembly. Even more than their health care, DDT likes their resources. “My friends go to Africa to get rich,” he said. Namibia is one of the biggest producers of uranium in the world. “I congratulate you,” DDT said about his friends. “They’re spending a lot of money.”

DDT the bully emerged during his lecture to North Korea as he repeated his name of “rocket man” for a country’s leader. In his juvenile attempt to taunt Kim Jung-Un before an international community, DDT embarrassed the United States. The speech included a casual threat to annihilate over 25 million people by saying that he might “totally destroy” North Korea.

Fifteen years ago, a U.S. president spoke to the UN about his unnecessary preemptive war with Iraq that he started the next spring to divert attention from the war in Afghanistan. George W. Bush’s action led to hundreds of thousands dead and wounded, a vast increase in the number of terrorists throughout the world, trillions of dollars taken from the people of the United States, complete ruin for several Middle East countries, and the disappearance of finding terrorists in Afghanistan. DDT’s speech before the UN shows that he hopes to emulate George W. by diverting attention from North Korea to one in Iran.

The deal that DDT ridiculed prevents Iran from getting a nuclear weapon for years. UN inspectors verified that Iran is complying with the terms of a deal to keep Iran from getting a nuclear weapon for a long time. DDT’s administration has verified that Iran is keeping its bargain, and the world, including Russia, supports it. DDT’s threats have caused Iran to develop a nuclear weapon if the U.S. breaks the deal and then confront the U.S. in war. At the same time, breaking the Iran deal would show the world that DDT refuses to seek a diplomatic solution with North Korea and fail to support the U.S.

About DDT’s message to the UN, Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom said, “It was the wrong speech, at the wrong time, to the wrong audience.” Iran took the opportunity to be critical of the U.S. at a sympathetic international forum.The U.S. has its problem with Sweden. Secretary of Defense James Mattis has threatened retaliation if the country, one of 122 backing a UN treaty for a total nuclear weapons ban, signs the treaty. His letter states that Sweden’s signature could affect U.S./Sweden military cooperation with U.S. military support and threatened U.S. support for Sweden’s role in NATO.

Sarah Snyder, an associate professor who studies human rights at the American University’s School of International Service, said that DDT’s language in his speech such as “loser terrorists” is more suitable for schoolyard fights than arguing “about international policy.” DDT’s vocabulary hasn’t improved an continues to be counterproductive. After Kim called DDT a “mentally deranged U.S. dotard,” DDT shot back with “madman.”

Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov approved of DDT’s message that “the U.S. would not impose its way of life on others,” but it didn’t approve of DDT’s namecalling. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said:

 “We continue to strive for the reasonable and not the emotional approach…of the kindergarten fight between children.”

Israeli’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu supported DDT’s speech in his own delivery to the UN because of his hatred for Iran.

Current senior aides argued against DDT’s attacks on Kim Jung-Un, including his use of “Rocket Man” in an attempt to humiliate the young leader, telling him that it would lead to an empasse with North Korea. (First, the weapons are missiles, not rockets, and second, Elton John’s “Rocket Man” is a sympathetic figure.) Former aide Sebastian Gorka claimed that he and another former white supremacist aide Steve Bannon helped write the speech before they left the White House. Current chief of staff, however, looked unhappy about the speech as DDT delivered it.

Thinkprogress.com noted: “Nowhere in the speech did Trump appear to see the irony in threatening other countries at an institution meant to uphold peacekeeping. Nor did Trump explain why other countries would want to negotiate with an administration that’s so eager to undermine America’s international agreements, such as the Iran nuclear deal.”

The world is suffering from the results of climate change in just the past month—an unprecedented large number of strong hurricanes, two earthquakes in Mexico after a hurricane, landslides in the Congo and Sierre Leone, and flooding in South Asia. Yet DDT spends his time planning how to pander to his supporters by inciting violence that can lead to World War III.

September 2, 2017

DDT: Week Thirty-two – More Destruction Than Harvey

The cruelty of Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) knows no bounds. He campaigned on protecting children brough involuntarily into the United States without documentation, but he threatens to rescind the DACA program that allows them work permits, throwing 800,000 people and their families into turmoil. Even if he keeps the program, he will have tormented millions of people before he announces his decision. DDT told recipients that he would “deal DACA with heart,” to “rest easy.” House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), facing a strong opponent in 2018 and suffering from town hall criticism, now supports DACA despite his long time opposition to the program.

DDT ignored the suffering of people in Hurricane Harvey to tout his new tax plan. His speech in Springfield (MO) had no details, but he praised its simplicity, corporate tax cuts (already lower in actuality than most countries), “tax relief for middle class families” (which it won’t do), and “the American model” while brings back money from overseas by extremely low taxes). The last “repatriation” of overseas profits during George W. Bush’s first term resulted in accelerated mergers, increased dividends, and wealthier company executives—but no jobs. DDT told House representatives to write the bill and knows nothing except the wealthy—including DDT—will benefit. The GOP’s only goal is cutting taxes for the wealthy and corporations while slashing all programs for almost all people in the U.S.

Only nine percent of people said corporations paid too much in taxes, while 67 percent said they paid too little. A Bloomberg poll found that under five percent of Americans believe tax policy is the “most important issue facing the country” — less than half the percentage that picked climate change. And that was before Hurricane Harvey.

With daughter Ivanka’s advice, DDT has dumped a rule requiring businesses with over 100 employees report salaries for different genders and races. Without this rule, people will lack an evidence-based foundation to address pay discrimination.

About 4.2 million workers, most of them women and people of color, lose overtime pay after a Texas judge overturned a labor rule doubling the 2004 time-and-a-half overtime salary threshold to $47,476 a year. Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta and DDT promised to protect U.S. workers, but Acosta indicated that he won’t support the $47,476 threshold.

Acosta has filed a proposal in court to postpone the “judiciary rule” for an additional 18 months so that brokers can cheat clients. If the court agrees, brokers can give advice that benefits only themselves, costing retirement savers billions of dollars annually in high fees and commissions.

Local law enforcement will be re-militarized with free bayonets, grenade launchers, tanks, weaponized aircraft, explosives, and other martial equipment which the DOJ found “inflamed tensions” and violated constitutional rights. Police officers will all look like the armed guards from the counterterrorism squad protecting the South Hampton wealthy listening to Bach at the musical festival and other galas, including a benefit for the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund. No terrorism threat but the heavily armed guards may draw attacks to these events like bees to honey.

Montana is a model of sanity in militarized law enforcement. Democratic Governor Steve Bullock signed a Republican-sponsored bill, passed with bipartisan support, that blocks state and local police departments from obtaining the militarized equipment. Police can request other kinds of military surplus after they notify the public within 14 days of doing so.

One place that needs protection is Jewish-themed locations.  Over two-dozen anti-Semitic incidents occurred throughout the nation in the two weeks after white supremacists marched on Charlottesville and DDT gave license to anti-Semitism.

In his continued effort to sabotage the Affordable Care Act, DDT cut funding for its outreach by 90 percent. Funding for “navigators,” organizations helping people sign up for health insurance, is also cut by 41 percent.

The State Department closed the San Francisco Russian consulate and trade annexes in Washington and New York. An official said that Washington’s goal is to improve relations with Moscow. Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov has promised “retaliation.” All non-immigrants in Russia had been suspended between August 23 and September 1, and visa operations at U.S. consulates are suspended indefinitely. Black smoke coming from the SF location on a 105-degree day indicates destruction of something.

“A Renewed Call to Action,” a 2014 White House report on sexual violence, was taken off the government website, just as materials about climate change and LGBT rights were removed after DDT’s inauguration. A copy is still available here.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson wants to use diplomacy with North Korea, and DDT had wanted one-on-one talks with Kim Jong-Un. This week, however, DDT tweeted, “Talking is not the answer!” Either the entire U.S. is headed for a huge disaster, or, as Tillerson has said, DDT speaks for himself. Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis must believe that: he told reporters after DDT’s tweets that “[w]e’re never out of diplomatic solutions.”

Reports that Mueller’s investigation has help from the IRS’s Criminal Investigations unit that focuses “exclusively on financial crime, including tax evasion and money laundering” led DDT to continue his smear of former FBI Director James Comey. Less than 40 minutes after Fox & Friends discussed the topic, DDT tweeted that Comey “exonerated Hillary Clinton long before the investigation was over” in a “rigged system.” People knowledgeable about Comey’s investigation refuted DDT’s accusation. The tweet about being too soft on Clinton follows the letter accusing Comey of being too hard on Clinton in DDT’s excuse to fire Comey.

In response to an article on a previous letter firing Comey that White House counsel considered too “problematic,” Rick Gage responded, “I feel like we are in the middle of a Tom Clancy novel, except that Mr. Clancy respects fiction too much to write something this absurd.” Robert Mueller reportedly has a draft of that letter.

DDT is violating the Hatch Act stopping all executive employees except president and vice-president from campaign activities. Ben Carson was introduced as “the secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development” at DDT’s campaign rally in Phoenix. Then DDT read a speech campaigning against Sen. Claire McCaskill written by executive employees. Presidential ad-libbing is acceptable, but executive branch employees’ writing campaign speeches is not.

More leaks from DDT-world describe his losing his temper with anyone around him because of his failures regarding Hurricane Harvey and Charlottesville (VA) response highlighted by the media. DDT was furious at the lack of loyalty after Gary Cohn’s criticism about DDT’s support for white supremacists and about Tillerson’s disagreement with DDT. The small—and sometimes disinterested crowd—at the Phoenix rally also raised DDT’s ire. DDT proudly announced he was speaking to a packed house in Phoenix, but other photos—the ones that were not photoshopped indicated differently.

New chief of staff, 67-year-old John Kelly, has received much of DDT’s fury. Kelly told staff members that he had not had this treatment in his 35 years of serving the nation and would not tolerate it. DDT did the same thing to Paul Manafort when he tried to control him and hates John Kelly’s management of him because of its structure. DDT loyalists call Kelly “the church lady” because of his rule enforcement and position as gatekeeper with no more drop-ins. Kelly hasn’t prevented DDT’s Fox binge-watching, but he has fired Steve Bannon, Sebastian Gorka, and Anthony Scaramucci who gave DDT printouts from conservative media. Others are on their way out. Telephone calls now go through the White House switchboard, and Kelly listens in—which doesn’t go well with DDT. All reports, memos, and news articles are supposedly vetted before DDT gets them.

Roger Stone, a former DDT advisor said, that “Kelly is trying to treat the president like a mushroom. Keeping him in the dark […] is not going to work.” [A television pundit also pointed out that mushrooms are fed sh*t.]

DDT’s lies about his “wall” are building confusion. He claims it will make the nation safer from the Mexican “criminals” but that illegal border crossings have been stopped by 78 to 81 percent. He’s wrong on all counts: Mexico won’t pay for the wall, it won’t stop drugs from coming into the U.S., and DDT made up his statistics. Why does DDT want a wall if he’s already blocking the crossings?

According to Washington Post fact checkers last week, DDT made 1,057 false or misleading claims in his first seven months, about five a day. He repeatedly takes credit for events or decisions made before his inauguration, such as his claim about the extra money pouring into the military at his “strategy” speech this past week. One of his big lies is that President Obama wire tapped the Trump Tower. The DOJ just debunked that lie, stating that there is no evidence to support DDT’s claim.

DDT’s approval rating among people aged 18-29 has reached a new low of 20 percent, according to Gallup which also put him at 34 percent approval generally. Newsweek called the “least popular president ever,” and Time said “that he could become the least popular president in modern history.”

Today DDT tried a do-over in Harvey territory by shaking hands, kissing children, passing out meals, and talking to people. Then he talked about how happy the people were and how “beautiful” the disaster was. “It’s been a wonderful thing,” he said. “Have a good time, everybody!” he told people at the shelter in the convention center. Nothing about the 44+ people who died, the 136,000+ houses destroyed, the places still underwater, the lack of food and water, the danger from polluted Superfund sites, etc. It’s three days until DDT will probably destroy the lives of hundreds of thousands of DACA immigrants.

August 12, 2017

DDT: Week Twenty-Nine – Wars to Help His Approval Ratings

With his approval ratings tanking, Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) may be attempting to model George W. Bush whose ratings rose from 50 percent before the 9/11 attacks to 85 percent—the highest for any president. Six months after W.’s preemptive war on Iraq, the approval dropped back down to 50 percent, but still went back to the White House a year later, with a little help from Ohio computers. If one war is good, then many should be far better, DDT may figure. Thus his attacks on North Korea, Venezuela, immigrants, transgender people, health care, voters, women, the climate, and the Republicans, to mention a few.

North Korea is the most obvious war on DDT’s agenda. During his campaign, he presented Hillary Clinton as a fearsome hawk while he pictured himself as an isolationist. Clinton was touted as the “War Hawk” at the RNC convention, and Bernie Sanders’ supporters, who voted for Trump instead of Clinton, made the same claim. In April 2016, DDT said:

“Unlike other candidates for the presidency, war and aggression will not be my first instinct. A superpower understands that caution and restraint are really truly signs of strength.”

After killing hundreds and hundreds of civilians in the Middle East and sending in the “mother of bombs” to attack Syria, DDT’s ratings kept plummeting. This past week he started out by promising “fire and fury” against North Korea followed the next days by saying that he wasn’t “tough enough” and then continued about Kim Jung-Un:

“This man will not get away with what he’s doing, believe me. If he utters one threat, in the form of an overt threat … or if he does anything with respect to Guam or any place else that’s an American territory or an American ally, he will truly regret it.”

Then the Dow Jones dropped over 200 points, the second fall in two days.  Thus far, the military is not on his side and has done no preparation, but DDT said that he is “locked and loaded” if North Korea makes a move, probably threatening a nuclear strike that he can do all on his own. Nuclear war could be a distraction from Robert Mueller’s investigation into his finances and connection with Russia.

Twitter users are asking that DDT be blocked from tweeting because his threats of violence violate Twitter’s rules and terms of service. Last month, people accused DDT of the same violation after he tweeted the video clip of himself beating up someone labeled CNN. Individuals blocked from DDT’s Twitter account are suing him because it is a public forum and “official statement.” Blocking them prevents availability to the information and the right of dissent. Toilet paper featuring old DDT tweets are also sold out.

This week marks the 72nd anniversary of the tragic nuclear bombing of Nagasaki. DDT rages against North Korea, but he has failed to the positions of South Korea ambassador, the Head of East Asian and Pacific Affairs at the U.S. Department of State and the Pentagon, Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security to handle global nonproliferation—among many others.

DDT has wanted to bomb North Korea for at least 18 years, as an interview with Tim Russert on Meet the Press shows. Also obvious in this clip is how much DDT’s ability to articulate issues has diminished since then, a frightening difference if one thinks about DDT suffering from dementia.

Not satisfied with war on North Korea, DDT threatened action in Venezuela. Once again, DDT refused any diplomacy, refusing to take a phone call from President Nicolás Maduro after the outrageous threat to militarily involve itself in the country’s problems. Maduro had warned that the U.S. might try to invade Venezuela, and DDT’s threat makes the action appear a reality.

Furious about the failure of Trumpcare, DDT continued his war against GOP members of Congress with a focus on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY). One tweet ordered, “Mitch, get back to work and put Repeal & Replace, Tax Reform & Cuts and a great Infrastructure Bill on my desk for signing. You can do it!” Later he indicated that he might be replacing McConnell although that’s not his right. In DDT’s pattern of  “tweet first, read later,” he sent out a piece about how “Insurers [are] seeking huge premium hikes on ObamaCare plans” from Fox and Friends, an article that explains DDT’s sabotage of the Affordable Care Act as the reason for rising health insurance premiums.

Other tweet wars last week were against the “AmazonWashingtonPost,” the “FailingNewYorkTimes,” Hillary Clinton, President Obama, and Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT). The New York Times has collected “The 351 People, Places and Things Donald Trump Has Insulted on Twitter.” The list is notable for DDT’s limited vocabulary—fail (105 times), fake (105 times), dishonest (91 times), variations of lie (83 times), dumb or dummy (61 times), sad (51 times), terrible (44 times), etc.

Another possible DDT war may be with potential 2020 candidates. Sens. Tom Cotton (AL) and Ben Sasse (NE) have gone to Iowa this year, Gov. John Kasich is considering a visit to New Hampshire, and Mike Pence’s full schedule produced the idea that he’s like a vice-president during the last couple of years of a president’s second term. Sen. Jeff Flake (AZ) is touting his book about conservatism unlike that of DDT. While DDT complains to his campaign rally audiences about Hillary Clinton, these prez wannabees work the donors. Pence still vociferously denies any interest in running against DDT and continues to look worshipfully at him in every photo op. DDT may think that he’s protected by Sean Hannity, Tony Perkins, Jim DeMint, and Grover Norquist, but his incessant alienation of Republicans may work against him.

Everyone seems to be a target for DDT except Russia and white supremacists. He praised Vladimir Putin for evicting 755 members of the U.S. embassy in Russia because it would give DDT a “smaller payroll.” These people continue to be on the payroll, however, because they will be employed elsewhere. The reaction to DDT’s statement was so negative that he said he was being “funny”—inappropriate and probably inaccurate. Russia isn’t laughing either.

Despite a DDT’s large number of tweets since the bomb exploded at a mosque in Bloomington (MN) a week ago, not one has addressed this act of terrorism. White supremacist White House aide Sebastian Gorka said that there is no comment because the act may be faked by a liberal. He claims that DDT is waiting until an investigation is finished, something that DDT didn’t do when he accused a robbery during June in the Philippines of being terrorism. Hate crimes against Muslims increased 91 percent during the first half of 2017 compared to the same time period in 2016. DDT did tweet about the white supremacist attacks in Charlottesville (VA) today but said that the violence was “on many sides,” meaning that he refuses to blame the white supremacists agitators. A white supremacist killed one and injured nineteen counterprotesters by speeding his car into a large group before repeatedly backing up and attacking them again.

While DDT golfs and tweets, Robert Mueller continues his investigation. On July 26, the day after Paul Manafort appeared before Senate Intelligence Committee staffers, the FBI raided his home for “documents and other materials.” DDT most likely knew about the early morning raid because he released his tweets against the acting FBI director Andrew McCabe and transgender military service members a few hours afterward. Mueller’s large team recently added Greg Andres who specializes in corruption and bribery. Subpoenas have already been issued about the June 9, 2016 meeting involving Donald Trump, Jr., Jared Kushner, and Paul Manafort with a Russian lawyer offering incriminating information on Hillary Clinton. Democrats on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee are now investigating the ways that DDT is financially benefiting from his current position. They started by requesting documents from 15 cabinet departments and nine independent executive branch agencies about their spending at “businesses owned by or affiliated with the Trump Organization.”

Everyday at 9:30 am and 4:30 pm DDT gets a briefing, but the folders are only positive news about him—admiring tweets, photos of him looking “powerful,” and praise-filled “news,” most likely from Fox. Much as it seems like satire, this information is for real. DDT thinks that the role of a president is to sit in the Oval Office, issue orders to pass legislation, and then sign bills.

Has Time magazine killed hopes for John Kelly staying as chief of staff? He’s on the cover as “Trump’s Last Hope.” Usually this praise above DDT means that the subject will be soon gone. Forty-three years ago this week Richard Nixon resigned. How long will DDT last?

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