Nel's New Day

February 21, 2021

GQP ‘Spiritual Leader’ Demands Followers “Kiss the Ring’

President Joe Biden is making decisions for the United States, but Deposed Donald Trump (DDT), declaring on conservative media that the presidential election was stolen from him, waits at Mar-a-Lago for followers to come pay obeisance to him.

Sycophant Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who calls DDT almost every day, is again going to Mar-a-Lago to golf—and get him to build up the Republican party, now badly split after the impeachment and House Minority Mitch McConnell’s (R-KY) attack on DDT. Last Tuesday, House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA) visited DDT. Brad Parscale, fired from being campaign manager and responsible for questionable expenditures of millions of campaign dollars, went to Mar-a-Lago for a long meeting. Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) held a fundraiser on Saturday night.

Absent from DDT’s side for a few years, Steve Bannon is back. During the first few years of DDT in the White House, Bannon played him like a fiddle to accomplish his ends but got forced out. Once gone, Bannon stole almost a million dollars from a GoFundMe website ostensibly to build a tiny portion of DDT’s southern border wall, but DDT pardoned him for that offense shortly before Biden was inaugurated.

Now Bannon has another plan: run DDT for the House, become the Speaker because he believes Congress will turn Republican, and impeach Biden. His accusation is that Biden “stole” the election.

Top DDTers also have other plans such as making DDT’s first White House press secretary Reince Priebus the Wisconsin governor although Tony Evers has the position for another three years. In Pennsylvania, GOP Sen. Pat Toomey isn’t running in 2022, and the Republican party has its eye on a QAnon candidate. Toomey voted for DDT’s conviction in the impeachment, and furious Republicans announced they don’t elect people “to do the right thing.” The current criterion is to follow whatever corruption DDT wants. Bannon said, “Any candidate who wants to win in Pennsylvania in 2022 must be full Trump MAGA.”

Flush with what DDT sees as a strong following, he plans to put his extremist loyalists into primaries. They may win against other Republicans, but moderate Republicans and independents could elect Democrats. For example, Arizona GOP chair Kelli Ward might lose a general election against incumbent Mark Kelly in 2022 for supporting conspiracy theories and leading her party in censuring Cindy McCain, former Sen. John McCain’s (R-AZ) wife, for supporting Biden. In Georgia, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, an outspoken QAnon conspiracy theorist removed from her committee assignments, could run against former Sen. David Perdue in the primary, reducing the possibility of the Republicans defeating Democrat incumbent Raphael Warnock. DDT has clashed with Republicans who might defeat Democrats for Congress, like former Sen. Kelly Ayotte in New Hampshire.

The question is how long DDT will trust Bannon. Touting his new memoir Ticking Clock: Behind the Scenes at 60 Minutes in an interview, former 60 Minutes producer Ira Rosen talked about Bannon’s attempt to remove DDT from the White House by using the 25th Amendment because of DDT’s early stage dementia. Bannon told DDT’s major rightwing donor Rebekah Mercer about his concerns, including DDT’s repetition of the same stories, and quoted a David Brooks column from October 2017:  

“And the polls show that if you want to win a Republican primary these days, you have to embrace the Trump narrative…  The Republican senators greeted Trump on Capitol Hill and saw a president so repetitive and rambling, some thought he might be suffering from early Alzheimer’s. But they know which way the wind is blowing. They gave him a standing ovation.”

One sycophant couldn’t go to Mar-a-Lago. Rush Limbaugh died February 17, 2021, leaving 15 million listeners without his consistent diet of racial prejudice, misogyny, hate, and lies.

DDT also lost “my Kevin,” as he called House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), after McCarthy told people about his frantic January 6 telephone call for help when DDT refused to send assistance for congressional members under attack in the U.S. Capitol. McCarthy tried to cover up the problem, but DDT found him lacking in deferential attitude. Following that event, DDT lambasted McCarthy for not removing Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) from House leadership because she voted for DDT’s impeachment. Fox reports DDT looks at McCarthy “with disdain.”

McCarthy tried to crawl back into DDT’s favor in late January at a trip to Mar-a-Lago after he agreed DDT “bears responsibility” for the riot. Aides reported the meeting was “good and cordial,” and McCarthy he does not “believe he provoked [the attack].” DDT, however, never forgives a slight. 

Next weekend, DDT will collect the faithful at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Orlando (FL). Usually located in Washington, CPAC chose the new venue because of its lax coronavirus guidelines producing its third-highest COVID-19 death toll last week. Sponsors include Fox, Washington Times, Epoch Times, Heritage Foundation, Turning Point USA, and conservative video platform Rumble. The senators typically voting against Biden’s appointees—Martha Blackburn (TN), Tom Cotton (AR), Ted Cruz (TX), Josh Hawley (MO), James Lankford (OK), and Rick Scott (FL)—will attend along with loyalist House members Mo Brooks (AL), Madison Cawthorn (NC), Matt Gaetz (FL), Jim Jordan (OH), Devin Nunes (CA), and Steve Scalise (LA). Deposed people such as former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, former HUD Secretary Ben Carson, former Wisconsin governor Scott Walker, former DOJ AG Matt Whitaker, former DDT lawyer Pam Bondi, and former press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders will be there. It’s a place for the ambitious to aim at a better job, perhaps president, like South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem.

One person missing from the event is former VP Mike Pence. Sources have said Pence will stay out of the public for the rest of the year after DDT looked willing to kill Pence at the January 6 insurrection. Pence’s former chief of staff Marc Short said he and Pence now accept Biden as “the duly elected president of the United States.” Although absent from DDT’s farewell, Pence attended Biden’s inauguration.

Others may not actually show up, and sponsors are insecure because of uncertain guest bookings. The theme “America Uncanceled” is about “cancel culture,” and organizers sent a letter to Politico accused it of this practice, a form of not providing support, after journalists asked questions about the event. Organizers whined about attempts to “cancel our votes, our voices, and our values” while trying to erase all non-white people in the U.S. DDT’s repetition about a rigged election in his CPAC speech as well as his smears of Biden’s actions will be an example of “cancel culture.”

Opposing DDT’s control of the GOP, House Minority Mitch McConnell (R-KY) ignores DDT, especially after McConnell’s vitriolic attack against DDT following McConnell’s vote against an impeachment conviction based on a mythical technicality. The speech scorched DDT about his faults, how he should have been convicted and how he can be criminally indicted. Three days later, DDT’s rebuttal rained lies and blistering attacks on the man who forced over 200 highly conservative and largely incompetent judges onto federal benches. A part of DDT’s statement:

“Mitch is a dour, sullen, and unsmiling political hack, and if Republican Senators are going to stay with him, they will not win again.”

Advisers talked DDT out of stating McConnell had too many chins and not enough smarts, according to one source.

Because a large QAnon following thinks DDT will be inaugurated on March 4, 2021, 5,000 National Guard troops will stay in Washington for at least another three weeks out of concern for violence. If that date doesn’t work out for them, QAnon followers picked May 20, 120 days after January 20 based on an economic recovery plan proposed over 20 years to forgive the national debt. Conspiracy theorists claim the military will take Biden from the White House on May 20 and install DDT in his former Washington home. Robert Guffey, who tracks the QAnon movement, explained more conspiracy beliefs:

“Then all the debt goes away and the IRS is abolished. And then, at that point, Trump starts releasing all these hidden patents for free energy. It’s going to be utopia and all the Democrats will be in Gitmo.”

Conservative media feeds these lies to the tens of millions of their audience:

  • The Biden’s marriage and romance is “part of a slick PR campaign devised by cynical consultants determined to hide the president’s senility by misdirection.”—Tucker Carlson, Fox 
  • The Bidens 12-year-old German Shepherd, Champ, “needs a bath and a comb and all kinds of love and care. [He] looks like … from the junkyard.”—Greg Kelly, Newsmax
  • About cutting off the video of the insurrection at the Capitol during the impeachment trial: “This is all emotional, political theater.”—Greg Gutfeld, cohost of Fox The Five
  • “[There] was no physical evidence that George Floyd was murdered…  The autopsy showed that George Floyd almost certainly died of a drug overdose, fentanyl.”—Tucker Carlson, Fox
  • About fighting domestic terrorists: “They’re creating extremists, just as we did in Iraq… And dramatically elevating the chance that something really awful is going to happen.”—Tucker Carlson, Fox
  • “If the [COVID-19] vaccine was so great, why were all these people lying about it.”—Tucker Carlson, Fox (before Biden was inaugurated)
  • [I don’t know] a single conservative or single Republican who frankly even knows what QAnon.”—Sean Hannity, Fox

Much has been said from conservative leaders telling Democrats about “moving on,” but DDT will never let that happen as long as he stays the face and voice of the GQP.

February 10, 2021

Impeachment Day Two, Horrifying Images

The U.S. House continued its part in the second impeachment of Deposed Donald Trump (DDT) on Wednesday with startling new revelations about how close congressional members and staffers in the Capitol came to physically being attacked by the mob on January 6. The case is based on DDT calling people to come to Washington, D.C. on January 6 to block the peaceful counting of votes for the president with his continued claims the election of Joe Biden as U.S. president was rigged. Once his supporters arrived, as DDT told them to do, he ordered them to go to the Capitol and stop the reading of the votes, to “fight” for their country.

DDT has refused to be a witness at the trial, but the presentation of a great number of tweets and videos starring him are front and center, making him a defacto witness in the Democratic prosecution. After Democrats spend one more day defining DDT as “inciter in chief,” the Senate can vote on whether either side will request actual witnesses.

Amidst the newly-released terrifying videos showing how close congressional members and their staffers were to being physically attacked and possibly killed, one of the House Democratic presenters talked about DDT’s order for his violent supporters to go from his rally at the Ellipse south of the White House, where people had a permit to be, and go to the Capitol.  

The rally was a big show, orchestrated by DDT who helped organize the speaking lineup and the music, but the permit for the event included no march. Another rally in Freedom Plaza also specified no march was authorized. After DDT got involved in the rally, the permit included an “activity overview” mentioning movement between the two sites. At his rally, DDT announced the march:

“We have come to demand that Congress do the right thing and only count the electors who have been lawfully slated, lawfully slated. I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard.”

The organizer of the original speaking line-up before DDT involved himself, Dustin Stockton, said the plan was “to stay at the Ellipse until the counting of state electoral slates was completed.”

In another revelation, DDT’s tweet attacking VP Mike Pence was posted ten minutes after DDT learned Pence was removed from the Senate floor to save him from DDT’s mob. Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) had told DDT about the Pence’s danger when DDT called Tuberville to delay the counting of votes. DDT tweeted:

“Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution.”

Outside the Capitol, the mob built a gallows; inside the mob chanted, “Hang Mike Pence.” At one point, violent mob members were only a few yards away from Pence.

DDT’s campaign and joint fundraising committee provided at least $3.5 million directly to people and organizations participating in the January 6 demonstration, and name of at least three people and a firm paid by DDT’s campaign were on the permits.

Andy Kroll compared DDT’s impeachment trial strategy to QAnon conspiracy theories:

“It is admitted that after the November election, the 45th President exercised his First Amendment right under the Constitution to express his belief that the election results were suspect, since with very few exceptions, under the convenient guise of Covid-19 pandemic ‘safeguards’ states election laws and procedures were changed by local politicians or judges without the necessary approvals from state legislatures. Insufficient evidence exists upon which a reasonable jurist could conclude that the 45th President’s statements were accurate or not, and he therefore denies they were false.”

Because of insufficient evidence to disprove DDT’s unsupported claims about a stolen election, his claims must be true–according to his supporters. DDT and his allies lost more than 60 lawsuits in state and federal courts while winning one minor one. Judges and elected officials from both parties dismissed fraud or corruption. DDT’s own appointee, Judge Stephanos Bibas, wrote, “Calling an election unfair does not make it so. Charges require specific  allegations and then proof. We have neither here.”

Like other conspiracy theorists, DDT claims if one cannot fully disprove repeated claims, one cannot say they’re false. Joe Uscinski, a University of Miami associate professor and expert on conspiracy theories, calls his approach the classic defense of the conspiracy theorist. President Obama’s birth certificate never satisfied “birthers” who believed he wasn’t born in the U.S. Conspiracy theorists always claim that denials are tantamount to coverups. Inability to disprove a negative makes people believe their beliefs are true. A prime example: how do you prove Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction if you can’t find any weapons? Some people still believe the weapons existed because no one found them.

The Coup D’etat Project at the University of Illinois’ Cline Center for Advanced Social Research determined the events of January 6 are an “attempted coup d’état [by dissidents]: an organized, illegal attempt to intervene in the presidential transition by displacing the power of the Congress to certify the election.” The center defines “dissidents” as a “small group of discontents that can include former government officials, religious leaders, business owners or civilians.” Coup is a shortened version of “coup d’etat,” a French term that meaning the overthrow of the government beyond the bounds of legality. In 2013, the Cline Center defined a coup d’état as “the sudden and irregular (i.e., illegal or extra-legal) removal, or displacement, of the executive authority of an independent government.”

The three categories of coups:

  • Coup conspiracies: planned but thwarted before they start.
  • Attempted coup: actions taken but unsuccessful.
  • Successful coup – those achieving its goals.

The project’s database includes 426 realized coups, 336 coup attempts, and 181 coup conspiracies with the event on January 6 being an attempted coup. This one is only the second entry in the U.S., the first being a conspiracy in 1948 when members of the Communist Party planned to violently overthrow the U.S. government.

Three characteristics of the January 6 attempted coup:

  • One or more persons posing a credible threat to the legislative power to determine national policy: safety concerns from thousands of people advancing on the Capitol forced lawmakers to stop conducting constitutionally mandated business to be evacuated from the building.
  • Attackers trying to change who controls the government: the focus of “The ‘Save America March’ rally immediately before the attack was changing the results of the 2020 presidential election.
  • Elements of advance organization before the attack: one or more groups “carefully planned, equipped, and organized themselves for violent action.”

If other revelations encompass sitting government officials, the event would be an attempted auto-coup, defined by when “the incumbent chief executive uses illegal or extra-legal means to assume extraordinary powers, seize the power of other branches of government, or render powerless other components of the government such as the legislature or judiciary.”

Much has been said about the pathetic performance of DDT’s first defense lawyer, Bruce Castor, on Day One of the second impeachment trial. Conservative pundit Matthew Walther, however, made these comments about the second speaker:

“The main event from David Schoen was a rant about ‘cancel culture.’ He screamed about due process and insisted that his client, who has refused to take part in the proceedings, deserved the right to be there. He contradicted his partner by invoking the rights of accused persons in the British legal tradition. He used the phrase ‘insatiable lust.’ He insisted that by speeding up the trial process, Democrats were violating some deep but unwritten principles of the same common law that are supposed to be irrelevant here, albeit without noting that the timeline was accelerated with the cooperation of the Senate Republicans who will be voting to acquit Trump. He ended with a poem by Longfellow.”

Unfortunately, too, Schoen read Longfellow’s poem very badly. Walther wrote:

“Trump would have been better served having the My Pillow guy give a two-hour infomercial or having Ted Nugent perform ‘Wang Dang Sweet Poontang’ live on the Senate floor.”

In another backlash from DDT’s long series election lies and misuse of his power, the recently-elected Fulton County (GA) Fani Willis DA has started a criminal probe into DDT’s attempts to overturn the election in that state with grand jury subpoenas to be sent out as soon as March. The investigation comes from DDT’s January 2 conference call to Georgia’s Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger when DDT badgered the official into finding 11,780 more votes for him. He wanted to be the winner of the state’s election, but the change would have made no difference in the U.S. presidential election selecting Joe Biden. The complete call was taped, and Raffensperger’s office has its own inquiry, possibly leading to a referral to a prosecutor’s office. DDT had already called Georgia’s GP governor, Brian Kemp, pressuring him to call a special legislative session to flip DDT’s loss to a victory. DDT’s spokesperson Jason Miller claimed that a president’s call to demand more evidence-free votes from state officials  is not “improper or untoward.”

Because of the aftermath of DDT’s long-term mishandling of the COVID-19 disaster, 6,700 people have died from the virus since the impeachment trial began. 

January 7, 2021

Fallout from DDT’s Attempted January 6 Coup in the U.S. Capitol

At 3:45 a.m. on January 7, VP Mike Pence announced Joe Biden and Kamala Harris as the next president and vice-president of the U.S. with 306 Electoral College votes after white supremacist supporters of Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) breached the U.S. Capitol and took over the building. DDT received 232 votes. Almost 150 GOP congressional dissidents created havoc by voting to overturn the legal elections in Arizona and Pennsylvania. These are the names of every congressional members voting in favor of overturning a legal presidential election. Only the attempted insurrection stopped their plans from also attacking legal votes in Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, and Wisconsin. Five people died, one of them a U.S. Capitol Police officer, and 52 people were arrested in the melee. 

While DDT raged in the White House, aides considered resigning, and senior officials discussed invoking the 25th Amendment to remove him before he can do more damage. According to the constitution, removal requires approval by the vice president and a majority of the Cabinet or the vice-president and a congressional body if they determine he “is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office.” Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) called for invoking the 25th Amendment to ensure “we have a sane captain of the ship” because DDT has become “unmoored not just from his duty or even his oath, but from reality itself.” Former AG Bill Barr, once DDT’s strongest supporter, called DDT’s conduct “a betrayal of his office and supporters” and stated that “orchestrating a mob to pressure Congress is inexcusable.”

After Pence made the announcement about the votes, DDT made this statement:

“Even though I totally disagree with the outcome of the election, and the facts bear me out, nevertheless there will be an orderly transition on January 20th. I have always said we would continue our fight to ensure that only legal votes were counted. While this represents the end of the greatest first term in presidential history, it’s only the beginning of our fight to Make America Great Again.”

The sort-of concession may come with the help of his small group of other seditionist advisers: chief of staff Mark Meadows, deputy chief of staff Dan Scavino, personnel director Johnny McEntee, and policy adviser Stephen Miller. Later DDT added, “A new administration will be inaugurated on January 20.” He didn’t mention Biden or say he lost, but West Wing staffers have received orders to pack up and move out.  

Democratic leaders House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (CA) and Senate Minority Leader (soon to be Majority Leader) Chuck Schumer (NY) called for DDT’s immediate removal from office because of his inciting sedition. Pence refused to talk to them. Although praising the action of “many of our Capitol Police,” Pelosi also called for the Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund to step down for his failure yesterday; he plans to leave in another nine days—four days before Biden’s inauguration. Sund had turned down National Guard assistance when the mob laid siege to the Capitol. Both House and Senate sergeants at arms resigned.

Almost 100 Democratic congressional members called for DDT’s removal with either impeaching him or invoking the 25th Amendment. The administration officials discussing DDT’s removal didn’t know if “acting” Cabinet members could participate in a vote about it.

Pelosi also asked for a full review of security failures at the executive branch level and the Pentagon’s delay in mobilizing the National Guard. DDT’s press secretary announced DDT had called in the National Guard, but DDT rejected the idea so Pence made the request. House Majority Leader Steny Hogan (D-MD) called Maryland’s Gov. Larry Hogan for help with the National Guard, but their deployment was delayed almost two hours because Hogan couldn’t get permission from Defense Secretary Chris Miller, a new DDT appointee. Hogan and two other GOP governors, Charlie Baker (MA) and Phil Scott (VT), called for DDT’s removal.

Acting U.S. Attorney Michael Sherwin for Washington, D.C. said DDT may be one of the “actors” investigated to decide if they broke the law after DDT told his followers to “fight like hell” before the insurgence.

DDT’s appointees are considering departing if not actually doing so. Two Cabinet members are gone: Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, wife of current Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. They cited DDT’s behavior, but they may want to avoid voting on removing DDT from office.

DDT’s appointments who left: Tyler Goodspeed, acting chair of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, who left the White House Council of Economic Advisers with no members, and U.S. special envoy to Northern Ireland, Mick Mulvaney, formerly DDT’s chief of staff and director of the Office of Management and Budget, who also destroyed the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau when he was acting director.  

Other departures:

  • Melania Trump’s chief of staff, Stephanie Grisham, formerly White House press secretary.
  • Anna Cristina Niceta, the White House social secretary.
  • Deputy White House press secretary Sarah Matthews.
  • Matt Pottinger, deputy national security adviser.
  • Ryan Tully, senior director for European and Russian affairs at the National Security Council.
  • John Costello, deputy assistant secretary of commerce.

National security adviser Robert C. O’Brien and deputy chief of staff Chris Liddell are considering resignations.

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO), a lead in overturning the presidential election within Congress along with Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), has been severely reproached by the Kansas City Star, his home state’s largest newspaper. According to its headline, Hawley “has blood on his hands in Capitol coup attempt,” and the editorial describes him as self-interested and dishonest, interested only in furthering his own political career. “Trump did not manage this madness on his own,” editors wrote.

After what Simon and Schuster calls a “deadly insurrection,” the publisher withdrew its offer for a planned book from Hawley. Former Missouri Sen. John Danforth said mentoring Hawley “was the biggest mistake I’ve ever made in my life” and blamed Hawley for sparking the insurrection.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) is demanding resignations by Cruz and Hawley for trying to overturn the elections. If they don’t, she asks Senate to expel them. Ocasio-Cortez has been joined by Reps. Cori Bush (D-MO), Jamaal Bowman (D-NY), and Ilhan Omar (D-MN) to expel House members voting to overturn the election.

After the attempted insurgency and one hour before Congress reconvened to certify electoral votes,  DDT’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani sent a voicemail to newly-installed Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-AL), urging him to “try to just slow it down” by objecting to electoral votes from “numerous states,” perhaps as many as ten, letting DDT’s team have more time to overturn Biden’s legal presidential win. The transcript of the call, reading like a conspiracy plan, was publicized because he mistakenly dialed another person with the message. Earlier in the day, Giuliani called for “trial by combat” at DDT’s rally outside the White House.

U.S. rivals such as China reveled in the attempted coup while allies expressed horror, some of them blaming DDT, and called for upholding democracy in the United States—similar to what the U.S. has done to other countries in the past. Russia ridiculed the U.S. for January 6’s events, and Iran pointed out how weak the U.S. is. 

Far-right media as well as social media are lying about the attempted coup by blaming it on the “antifa” or paid participants. Others blame the visuals of far-right people at the insurrection on evidence-free photoshopping and claiming a tattoo from the video game show Dishonored is the logo of the Communist party. Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) and QAnon congressional members spread conspiracy theories, and Fox network’s Laura Ingraham told fake news from Washington Times to millions of her followers. XRVision, the facial-recognition company cited in the conservative publication, calls the Washington Times’ reporting “outright false, misleading, and defamatory” and demands a retraction.

Unlike antifa and Black Lives Matter protesters, almost no thugs assaulting the U.S. Capitol wore masks, making identification much easier. The FBI already has over 4,000 tips online with more coming in by phone. Analysis from digital media is being forwarded to agents working the case. Among those who sacked the Capitol is a newly sworn-in West Virginia legislator who live-streamed the entire event. Later he claimed to be “an independent member of the media to film history” and didn’t participate in any “destruction.”

The Capitol’s invaders have been planning the event for weeks, indicated by their ease in navigating the buildings. Some wonder if they had inside help. The FBI, Secret Service, Homeland Security, Pentagon, National Guard, and Joint Task Force knew about the strong possibility of violence after DDT kept telling white supremacists to come of Washington, D.C. on January 6 for a “wild” time. The protection agencies ignored the problems and failed to coordinate, permitting thugs to break into the U.S. Capitol. Because of DDT’s sedition, CEO Mark Zuckerberg has permanently banned DDT from Facebook and Instagram.

This weekend, one of two weekends before he leaves the White House, DDT is going into hiding at Camp David, 70 miles from the White House. The chief of domestic terrorists may spend his time working on his list of pardons, including one for himself.

The situation in Washington is obviously fluid and rapidly changing. Meanwhile, January 7 saw another 4,134 new COVID-19 deaths in the U.S. along with 274,190 new infections. Hospitalizations are up at least ten percent to over 132,000 people.

January 5, 2021

January 5: Georgia Turns Bluer, GOP Plans Coup

Democrat Democrat Warnock has been declared winner of the Georgia senate seat to replace Kelly Loeffler, and Democrat Jon Ossoff has a small lead against David Perdue. Dictator Donald Trump (DDT), who always wants instant gratification, won’t be happy. Just like he wasn’t happy with his 62-minute telephone call to Georgia’s secretary of state Brad Raffensperger to beg and demand the 11,780 votes to flip the state for him. He expects Raffenperger to “find” the votes and “recalculate.”

No knows who leaked the tape. Raffensperger admitted to taping the call, and several people participated in the conversation from DDT’s end. One source stated Raffensperger had said he wouldn’t release the tape of the call unless DDT “attacked him or misrepresented the call.” In a tweet, DDT accused Raffensperger of being “unwilling, or unable, to answer questions” about election fraud conspiracy theories, a falsehood according to the tape. When Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) called Raffensperger earlier this year and asked him to destroy ballots, Raffensperger said he was glad he had a tape of the call to prove Graham’s lying denial to ask for certification of Georgia for DDT. No matter who leaked the conversation between DDT and Raffensperger, DDT may have committed a crime. Steve Benen wrote:

“Richard Nixon’s Watergate tapes were obviously a turning point in history. By most measures, these new revelations are considerably worse. The abuse is direct and unambiguous. The corruption is overt and deliberate. The recording is a bit like a glorified confession. We’ve known for weeks that Trump has been engaged in a lobbying effort, targeting state officials in the hopes that they’ll overturn election results he doesn’t like, but it wasn’t until yesterday that we heard the precise nature of his perverse pitch—which includes elements of madness, extortion, and fraud.”

GOP response? They have no problem with DDT’s criminal interference in a presidential election, but they are outraged by the leaking of the tape.

Since the general election, DDT’s followers believed the lies about election fraud, including a large number of congressional members—140 in the House and a baker’s dozen in the Senate—who then claim people who believe the GOP leadership lies about the concern regarding election fraud “deserve to be heard.” Like in 60+ losing court cases?  The only “reason” provided for widespread election fraud is that DDT couldn’t possibly lose the election. Fox network’s Tucker Carlson blames DDT’s loss on “virtually every power center on Earth [including] big business, Wall Street, the defense establishment, pharma, the permanent bureaucracy in Washington and above all, Silicon Valley.”

On January 6, congressional members hope to keep DDT in the Oval Office by protesting the states’ legal certification of Electoral College votes, forcing each chamber into a two-hour session for each protest. If one chamber—such as the House with a Democratic majority—accepts election votes, they remain valid. Several Republicans in the Senate have indicated disgust and dismay with the 13 trying to overturn the election in favor of DDT and promise to vote against the conservative opposition to democracy.

When the 117th House of Representatives was convened, Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) challenged “the seating of members-elect from the states of Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.” (North Carolina’s vote was closer than Michigan’s, but the GOP doesn’t mind because DDT won North Carolina.) Roy pointed out the claims of election fraud could also taint the elections of representatives and senators from these states because the same process was used to elect them.

Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), elected as an independent after her state’s GOP ran another candidate, opposes the coup because she “swore an oath to support and defend the Constitution“:

“I will vote to affirm the 2020 presidential election. The courts and state legislatures have all honored their duty to hear legal allegations and have found nothing to warrant overturning the results.”

On his Facebook page, Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE) posted:

“When we talk in private, I haven’t heard a single Congressional Republican allege that the election results were fraudulent – not one. Instead, I hear them talk about their worries about how they will ‘look’ to President Trump’s most ardent supporters…

“The president and his allies are playing with fire. They have been asking—first the courts, then state legislatures, now the Congress – to overturn the results of a presidential election. They have unsuccessfully called on judges and are now calling on federal officeholders to invalidate millions and millions of votes. If you make big claims, you had better have the evidence. But the president doesn’t and neither do the institutional arsonist members of Congress who will object to the Electoral College vote.

“We have a bunch of ambitious politicians who think there’s a quick way to tap into the president’s populist base without doing any real, long-term damage. But they’re wrong—and this issue is bigger than anyone’s personal ambitions. Adults don’t point a loaded gun at the heart of legitimate self-government.”

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) mourned, “Has ambition so eclipsed principle?”

Other GOP congressional members are coming out to vote against the challenge, including Sens. Jim Inhofe (OK), Jerry Moran (KS), Tim Scott (SC), and Tom Cotton (AR).  

Leaders of the attempted coup to overturn the presidential election struggled to provide rationales for their seditious behavior. Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX), who has lost court cases to reverse the election, said that if legal elections are not nullified, “it will mean the end of our republic, the end of the experiment in self-government.” About his defeats, he called for violence, for the losers to “be as violent as antifa and [Black Lives Matter].”

A coup leader, Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) attacked Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA) for “shameless personal attacks” and “unfounded claims” about many court cases and AG Bill Barr’s statement disproving election fraud. Toomey also wrote about democracy being “the right of the people to elect their own leaders.”

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) criticized people for their opposition in overturning a legal election. He told them to “calm down” and “tone down the rhetoric.”

Members of the coup who appeared on television like Hawley and Rep Clay Higgins (R-LA) cannot cite any evidence of “election crimes.” Two of them—Cruz and Hawley—aim at a 2024 run for the White House if DDT ever gets out of the way. Even VP Mike Pence, another presidential wannabe, said he “welcomes” the opposition to Biden’s win. 

Monday, DDT told a rally audience “if [Pence] doesn’t come through, I won’t like him quite as much” after he told the crowd Pence would overturn the election results in DDT’s favor. At a lunch with DDT, Pence tried to explain he may not have the power to block the electoral votes for Joe Biden’s victory despite DDT’s false claim “the Vice President has the power to reject fraudulently chosen electors.” Pence knows his role on January 6 is to preside over the counting of the vote and read them without changing them. Yet DDT maintains:

“The Vice President and I are in total agreement that the Vice President has the power to act.”

DDT prefers people believe the election was stolen from him instead of thinking he lost. Initially, DDT knew he lost, according to advisers, but a small group of insiders fed his delusion about erasing Biden’s win. Cleta Mitchell, an attorney advising DDT during his telephone call, left the law firm Foley & Lardner because its policy is not to represent “any parties seeking to contest the results of the election.”

The pro-coup Republicans in Congress use their MO of beating down the opposition with illegitimate arguments to destroy the reputations of Democrats. The GOP had ten hearings, one of them 11 hours long, about Hillary Clinton after four deaths at the diplomatic outpost at Benghazi. House Minority leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) blatantly stated the reason was to lower Clinton’s poll numbers. Now Republicans want a commission to audit already audited election results already examined in 60+ court cases where 80 judges, including some appointed by DDT, ruled no fraud.

Overturning the election doesn’t appeal to supporters of states’ rights who are opposed to the federal government making decisions, especially the U.S. president. Business leaders also know that this attempt decreases the stability of the nation: 200 leaders of the biggest companies signed a letter of protest to “thwart or delay” the electoral process.

Arrests of DDT supporters in Washington, D.C. for assault and carrying weapons started on Tuesday. The leader of the Proud Boys is banned in D.C. after his arrest for destroying a Black Lives Matter banner at an historic Black church in the city and carrying two “high-capacity firearm magazines.” D.C.’s Mayor Muriel Bowser mobilized 340 National Guard members to help police after permission from the city’s National Guard commanding general Maj. Gen. William J. Walker and acting Defense Secretary Chris Miller. Guns are also banned “within 1,000 feet of First Amendment Activities” (aka protests) on January 4-7. The city also blocks openly carrying firearms, and licensing for concealed carry must be from the District of Columbia.

And the ignored COVID-19 surges. On January 5, 15 days before the inauguration, new infections in the U.S. are 226,593 and new deaths 3,543. Total deaths are 365,664—closing in on the 400,000 expected on Inauguration Day.

December 29, 2020

Biden Waits, DDT Sabotages

Ignoring security for the United States, the lame-duck administration of Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) and the GOP continues its roadblocks against the new Biden/Harris administration, depriving people in the U.S. of safety, including members of the military.

Vital information about budgets, U.S. military forces, troop withdrawal, and the Russian cyber espionage is being withheld from the transition team of President-elect Joe Biden. The result, the most contentious presidential transition in decades, means danger for U.S. interests in both domestic and foreign issues. DDT frequently talked about his conversation with President Obama about sensitive national security matters but refuses to meet with Biden and anyone from Biden’s transition team for the same purpose.

A senior Pentagon official admitted the Defense Department is deliberately keeping budgetary data from Biden, who said he needed “a clear picture” to “deter our enemies.” Although saying that the Pentagon had been “completely transparent … on fiscal 2021 budget” and “topline information on the fiscal 2022-2026 program,” a spokesperson said the Office of Management and Budget hasn’t authorized the release of the full details of the FY22-26 program.” Answers to follow-up questions from the transition team demand a lengthy process. Biden also said the Defense Department refused to brief the transition team on last week’s huge cyberattack on government agencies and private U.S. companies. The department also continues to “deny and delay” meetings with transition members.

DDT’s officials admit they don’t want to give Biden any help in dealing with DDT’s priorities, such as building a wall on the southern U.S. border. Biden has vowed to stop the building of the wall upon his inauguration as DDT has charged ahead to damage and degrade the land with little planning. McAllen (TX) has more illegal crossings than other regions but almost no construction because ranchers and other landowners oppose the wall impacting their property. DDT brags about the miles of wall he has built, but only 40 of the 440 miles is new barrier. The remainder replaces or upgrades existing fences and bollards. No one know if DDT’s fence blocks migrants, but they are destroying natural habitats and species, some of them endangered. Biden’s plan to stop wall construction saves the nation $2.6 billion after about $700 million winds up current construction contracts. The funding can be returned to building projects on U.S. military bases.

At least a dozen existing construction contracts in Texas are on land the government doesn’t own, costing the government $1.6 million while contractors wait around. In this area, the administration planned 110 miles but finished only 15 miles. The Army Corps of Engineers won’t award contracts until it has the land, but high-level decision can override the agency. After the government awards the contract on land it doesn’t own, it goes to court to demand the land because it’s being penalized for not beginning construction. The court must give permission before building begins. In Texas, 70 condemnation cases have been filed since September; 53 are in one county where the government filed 25 lawsuits since Election Day. Much of the property has been in the families for generations. One owner came into the U.S. over 40 years ago as an undocumented immigrant on the same property he bought 30 years ago after he became a legal U.S. resident. His ranch would be behind the wall on the Mexican side.

After the inauguration, Biden faces other crises such as the slowing global economy, dangerous climate change, and accelerating racial problems, especially with DDT’s increasing promotion of domestic terrorism by white supremacists. DDT has played down the cyber attack, refusing to admit it could be by Russians because his entire focus has been on the mythical election fraud and developing strategies to overturn the nation’s majority win for Biden.

In opposition to the upcoming administration, Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia completed regulations allowing federal contractors to discriminate against racial and religious minorities, women, and LGBTQ people by calling the rules “religious liberty.” The new regulations affect about 4 million employees and follow Scalia’s refusal to protect employers from infection and death in the COVID-19 crisis. By removing language from statutes and court decisions, Scalia classifies almost all contractors as “religious, permits them to discriminate based on the employers’ belief in “religious tenets,” and removes the ability to identify lawbreaking. The contractors can select employees based on their religion, also breaking the law.

Throughout his past three years, DDT also wants to consider mandating agencies to delineate policy goals and show progress in the achievement for budgeting purposes to restrict Biden from his own budget processes. Circular A-11, a thousand-page document, must be used to justify funding requests. It would, however, remove strategic planning and performance measures from budget guidelines as required in a 1933 congressional law. The same order mandating Circular A-11 also permits a new classification of federal employees who aren’t permitted civil service protections. Federal employee unions are suing to stop the new class of workers.

Other DDT infiltration of Biden’s administration is filling multi-year positions left empty for years with DDT’s loyalists. 

DDT also continues his plan to overturn the election. Following DDT’s strategy, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) is suing VP Mike Pence, demanding he not count electoral votes from states DDT wants to exclude. The Constitution does not permit Gohmert’s demand, but Gohmert and his Arizona cohort Kelli “Chem Trail” Ward got the idea from a meeting with Pence and DDT last week to plot keeping DDT in the Oval Office. The case was filed with DDT-appointed Judge Jeremy Kernodle in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas. The text of the Twelfth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution:

“The President of the Senate shall, in the Presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the Certificates, and the Votes shall then be counted.”

Steve Benen wrote about the party that ran on following the U.S. Constitution and appointing “textual originalists” to the Supreme Court bench:

“In 2020, an elected member of Congress not only believes a vice president should have the unilateral power to decide the outcome of a presidential election, that same lawmaker expects the federal judiciary to make it happen. We are now watching people who call themselves conservatives argue that vice presidents should have unilateral power to decide presidential elections.”

DDT becomes increasingly angry with judges, especially Supreme Court justices, who refuse to overturn the election in his favor. Yesterday, he called the three he appointed “totally incompetent and weak” as well as chicken-hearted. A look at the rulings against DDT’s evidence-free election fraud claims.

With under ten percent of the promised 20 million vaccinations before the end of the year just two days before the deadline, Biden has been warned about delays for mass distribution, already experienced, worsening after his inauguration. One concern is whether DDT’s team has provided unrealistic expectations and no organization after Biden is inaugurated. DDT failed to order additional doses beyond the original one million earlier this year; a new order of 100 million doses for 50 more million people won’t be available until July 31, 2021. 

Biden is delivering difficult news either ignored or denied by DDT. Unable to take charge for another three weeks, Biden passes along the same news as many governors and medical experts about “this dark winter of the pandemic.” Last week, he said, “Our darkest days in the battle against COVID are ahead of us, not behind us.” Tuesday, he described the months ahead as “a very tough period for our nation” and asked people to make sacrifices to destroy the virus. Biden said, “It’s going to take all the grit and determination we have as Americans to get it done.” Yet he has a plan to give 100 million vaccinations in his first 100 days

Almost 70 percent of people in the U.S. support a mask-wearing mandate on federal property, and 72 percent want masks required in public places. Two-thirds of the respondents believe masks should be required with anyone outside the household. The poll shows a majority for both Democrats and Republicans.

Two GOP leaders, Massachusetts GOP leader Tom Mountain and Rep.-elect Luke Letlow (R-LA), suffered from their lack of masks. Mountain now recognized his mistake of attending a White House Hanukkah Party where the 100+ mingled closely, mostly without masks. He spent days in the hospital, close to needing a ventilator, and still suffers after over two weeks. His wife, who wisely didn’t attend the party, still contracted coronavirus along with Mountain’s son, daughter-in-law, and mother-in-law. Letlow, 41, died after testing positive for COVID-19 eleven days ago. Married, he had two young children.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates 400,000 deaths in the U.S. before Biden’s inauguration in three weeks. Past deaths in the U.S.: 100,000, May; 200,000, four months later; 300,000 in three months. Weekly deaths are expected to rise through January 16, 2021. By tomorrow, the number of infections will go above 20 million and deaths about 350,000. December 29, 2020: new cases in U.S. – 194,460; new deaths – 3,398.

December 27, 2020

Week 205: DDT Belatedly Signs Bill, Other Catch-Ups

When I heard that Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) had signed the stimulus bill to keep millions of people temporarily out of poverty, all I could think was “what a piece of garbage.” He didn’t demand $2,000 checks because he cared about people. If he was sincere, he would have told sycophant Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin to do it. Instead, he waited until Mnuchin and Congress to finish the bill before he had his tantrums. Mnuchin declared the approved bill “fabulous,” but DDT wanted attention. He got it by ruining his beloved “Christmas” (remember when he said Joe Biden would take away Christmas?!) for tens of millions of people who suffer from his mismanagement of the pandemic. If DDT had led the United States into health last March, hundreds of thousands of people in the nation wouldn’t have died, and hundreds of millions of others wouldn’t be living a life of deprivation and insecurity.

Stalling on the signing for several days, DDT still created more permanent misery. Twelve million people will get unemployment benefits for another 11 weeks, but those in the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance and the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation programs for gig workers won’t get a payment for the final week of the year because DDT signed it Sunday instead of Saturday. In addition, the $300 federal enhancement may last only 10 weeks instead of 11. DDT pompously said he’d sign the bill but wanted Senate to increase stimulus checks to $2,000 with no congressional commitment. Republicans in the House have consistently turned down that amount. Info about the stimulus relief bill. 

Follow-up on DDT’s and AG Bill Barr’s executions from internal documents

  • Public explanations for the picks of executed prisoners misstated key facts from the cases.
  • One of the claims falsified the executed man “murdered … an 8-year-old girl.” He refused to kill her so the co-defendant, who received a life sentence instead of the death penalty, murdered the girl.  
  • The claim about the execution being for “the victims and families” was a lie: family members objected to one of the executions.
  • The claim that the first ten executions were of the oldest inmates sentenced to death is false.
  • The Justice Department didn’t review the prisoners’ physical or mental health before the execution: one had an IQ between 70 and 75, and the other suffered from schizophrenia, dementia, and Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Executions were done in the middle of the night.
  • One prisoner was strapped to the gurney with an IV to kill him while lawyers worked to remove a court order.
  • Another prisoner was executed during a pending appeal.
  • Executioners bought drugs from a secret pharmacy failing a quality test, drugs officials knew might not face a court scrutiny.
  • An “expert” witness hired to testify the drug is humane is not a physician or licensed care provider; he is a professor of chemistry and pharmacology at Vanderbilt University. The second witness is a retired California anesthesiologist.
  • An execution took 28 minutes for the man to die while he gasped for breath.
  • The government hired private executioners and paid them in cash.
  • Barr was the final authority for buying drugs and issuing public information, but he didn’t act alone.

More about DDT and Barr’s executions.  

Late last night, I posted a piece about Democratic socialism. This morning I read my partner’s Facebook page on the same subject. I was amazed because we had not talked about the subject. Hers is much better than mine—see below.   

“Democratic socialism is not socialism. Nor is it a political party. Democratic socialism protects our democracy by aiding capitalism and socialism to work together sharing in the welfare of the people.

“Government serves and protects, and privately owned business supports. Putting it bluntly, Democratic socialism is the fire department saving your house. Capitalism is the insurance company denying your claim. Democratic socialism collects taxes and returns our taxes back to us in services and protection such as building the infrastructure, Social Security, Medicare, police, fire, military, education—meaning all people collectively and equally reap the benefits. Capitalism produces the world in which we live, based upon supply and demand which, in turn, determines profit and loss for owners and stockholders in the privately owned sector.

“Both government and businesses provide the money for wages that, in turn, pay the taxes to the government and buy products from business. Working together. This was so successful during the middle part of last century that education became widely accessible, houses easy to buy, and the middle-class workers took home the greatest share of the wealth than ever before. Life was good. Too much vanilla but still good.

“Until Reagan. Again, bluntly put, under laissez-faire policies (no restrictions or limits) capitalism got greedy. Until Reagan, for every service or product capitalists provided to the government such as uniforms for the army, our government put a cap on what it would pay. Obviously limiting profits does not make any capitalist heart sing. And god knows how businesses love to raise prices any way they can.

“It was the rising oil prices that gave Reaganites a reason to attack government price limits. Along with the biggest cut in history for the rich, causing “stagflation” for the first time (rapid inflation and high unemployment), resulted in “trickle-down economy” which we now know does not work. Add destroying unions, and the removal of many price limits, especially military, in the Tax Reform Act, the stage was set for business takeover. Tragically for a stable economy, every time we got a tax cut Reagan Stagflation became the new norm.”

Thanks, Sue!

A few pieces from the past week or two. Only 23 days until Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) leaves the White House—one way or another, and the confusion is already in full swing. The White House emailed its employees to begin departing the premises on January 5, but two days later the White House Management Office emailed staff to disregard earlier message. “Updated information will be shared in the coming days.” Nothing since then.

Last Monday, more information about the cyber espionage reveals emails from Treasury Department senior officials have been hacked although Secretary Steve Mnuchin declares no classified information has been breached. Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) said no one knows the damage caused. Mnuchin said, “I can assure you, we are completely on top of this” but didn’t explain how no one detected the Russian presence in the system for over four months. Although Barr and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo agree on Russia as the hacking source, no public declaration has been announced. The Dow Jones market went down 200 points that day, and the subject largely disappeared from the media. Background of this espionage.   

After six months, the White House coronavirus task force no longer sends weekly state reports with data and recommendations unless states request them. There was no explanation for the change. In the December 20 reports, Tennessee had the largest COVID-19 cases per capita, and Oklahoma has the highest test positivity rate. South Dakota has the most deaths per capita. Like nine other states, none of these three states has a mandate to wear masks.

Only 1.94 million shots of the Pfizer vaccine were administered as of December 26 while about 9 million doses from Pfizer and Moderna sit in U.S. hospitals and elsewhere. DDT’s promise of 20 million vaccinations before the end of the year also carried little funding. The lag may come from the process of preparing the frozen shots, finding employees for vaccinating, and guaranteeing social distancing before and after vaccinations. Johnson & Johnson’s one-shot vaccine, using an ordinary refrigerator and no need to specialized procedures to administer, may be available in February.

Two two major op-eds from the conservative Wall Street Journal in 2020 typify the misrepresentations and betrayals from DDT’s administration. In June, VP Mike Pence, head of the White House coronavirus task force, promised people that COVID-19 would have no “second wave,” that “such panic is overblown.” With fawning accolades for DDT’s fantastic leadership, he wrote about the containment of new outbreaks and “stabilized” cases. “We’ve saved lives,” he wrote. “That’s a cause for celebration, not the media’s fear mongering.” At that time, the U.S. passed 115,000 COVID-related deaths with about 750 deaths per day in the U.S. A little over six months later, the “stabilized” nation has almost tripled the number of deaths at 341,138 while the number of infections is over eight times the approximately 2,300,000 in mid-June.

A claim from Mick Mulvaney, sometimes CIA director or chief of staff or director of the Office of Management and Budget or special envoy to North Ireland under DDT, is a colossal joke. Instead of DDT being willing to “concede gracefully,” as Mulvaney promised four days after the election, DDT’s hateful claims and court cases about non-existent election fraud has infused the nation with hatred and violence for months to the extent of using martial law enforcing new elections. We’re still waiting for even “concede” almost eight weeks after the election, let alone “gracefully.”

December 19, 2020

Biden Organizes, DDT Hides

In the White House, Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) hides out, working about 20 to 30 minutes a day, if that long, tucked in between whiny telephone calls and television watching. At the same time, President-elect Joe Biden works with his transition team and VP-elect Kamala Harris. Both of them have interviewed each Cabinet candidate and exchanged notes about their conclusions.

Biden started carefully forming his Cabinet much earlier than DDT did when he paraded people through the lobby of his Trump Tower to his apartment or to his Bedminster golf course four years ago after he fired Chris Christie as head of his transition team. Soon after Election Day, DDT dumped Christie along with his vetting process, detailed schedule, and 30 volumes of transition documents to replace him with DDT’s three oldest children and his son-in-law, an indication of the power they would wield over him. DDT’s criterion became whether people looked the part for the job, meaning white, well-dressed males. By Election Day, Biden had a database of 9,000 potential administration hires, and about 2,500 had already been vetted. His database now has over 45,000 entries. Officials say at least one minority candidate has been considered for each position. 

To vet the agencies, the transition team examined how it was historically run and which leadership style (executive, budget expert, or a regulatory specialist) worked best. Biden’s highest value was crisis management. Because of the damage to the government workforce during the past four years, Biden chooses extensive government service and general abilities for his picks, for example Xavier Becerra for HHS and Denis McDonough for Veterans Affairs.

An incoming president needs to make about 4,000 appointments for the executive branch, a task in which DDT miserably failed. Of those, over 1,250 require Senate confirmation, and 736 have no nominees. Thus far, Biden has announced 20. The most recent:

  • Chairman, Council on Environmental Quality: Brenda Mallory, expert in environmental law and regulation.
  • EPA Secretary: Michael Regan, the head of North Carolina’s Department of Environmental Quality who managed a difficult multibillion-dollar settlement over a coal ash cleanup with Duke Energy, established an environmental justice advisory board, and worked with the state’s Republican legislature.
  • Department of the Interior Secretary: Rep. Deb Haaland (D-NM), who would be the first Native American in that position. The interior is in control of over 20 percent of the land in the U.S.; the secretary would be in charge of Biden’s goal to stop all new oil and gas drilling on public lands and waters.

Many people see Biden as a softie, ready to give everything up to the Republicans. His interview with Stephen Colbert indicates differently. Asked if he can “patch it up” and work with former friend Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Biden dodged the question instead of giving a positive response:

“Lindsey’s been a personal disappointment, because I was a personal friend of his. But look, I think I can work with Republican leadership in the House and the Senate. I think we can get things done. And I think once this president is no longer in office, I think you’re going to see his impact on the body politic fade, and a lot of these Republicans are going to feel they’ve got much more room to run and cooperate.”

When Biden is protesting the hacking of federal agencies, possibly the Defense Department, and private companies, the Pentagon stopped meetings with his transition team. Friday’s meetings were “rescheduled” until after the new year—over two weeks from now. The Pentagon claimed the change was a “mutually agreed” pause; Yohannes Abraham, Biden’s transition executive director, expressed concern about “an abrupt halt in the already limited cooperation there.” Acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller evidently stopped the meetings according to DDT’s wishes, but he said Defense officials were too busy to meet with the man who will be president in a month.

Biden has promised to stop building DDT’s wall, saving about $2.6 billion, according to government estimates. While DDT built more wall, the number of detentions increased to the highest totals in 20 years.  

What happens to the ousted White House officials and aides?

VP Mike Pence, who hasn’t owned a home since he became Indiana governor in 2017, is looking for some digs in the Washington suburbs, a possible indication he aims at a 2024 presidential run. Pence even uses his former residence at the governor’s residence for his voting address.

Chief of Staff Mark Meadows plans a consulting firm with other White House aides and allies—after he has screwed up the White House for almost nine months.

Larry Kudlow, DDT’s financial adviser who failed to predict the last two recessions, will return to broadcasting as a financial analyst.

Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump have bought a $30 million property on a secluded island near Miami, according to the New York Post; Ivanka’s posts focus on pictures looking backward and her children at Washington places such as the Lincoln Memorial.

Derek Lyons, staff secretary, and Alyssa Farah, communications director, have already left.

DDT is finding places for his loyalists: fundraise Brian Ballard to the Kennedy Center, Kellyanne Conway to the U.S. Air Force Academy Board, Corey Lewandowski and David Bossie to the Defense advisory board, and White House aides Nicholas Luna and Andrew Giuliani (Rudy Giuliani’s son) to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council. DDT also appointed his Advisory 1776 Commission, designed to revise history, with presidents of conservative private colleges, a retired political scientist who compares the Black Lives movement to the KKK, a worker at Newt Gingrich Productions, a former Mississippi GOP governor, a conspiracy theorist spread the lie Hillary Clinton is part of a Satanic cult, the former president of the Palm Beach Republican Club, and DDT’s worshipper Charlie Kirk, who has no college degree. No historians included.

Friday, DDT met with Giuliani, Meadows, Michael Flynn, and White House lawyer Pat Cipollone about declaring martial law to rerun the election. Cipollone and Meadows disagreed. He’s also gearing up for a fight to live at Mar-a-Lago after he leaves the White House. White House aides report that they haven’t convinced DDT he’s leaving the White House by January 20, 2021, the last day of his term. An adviser said, “He’s throwing a f***ing temper tantrum.”

In 2015, DDT agreed with National Review’s Rich Lowery: “I am the most fabulous whiner. I do whine because I want to win. And I’m not happy if I’m not winning. And I am a whiner. And I’m a whiner and I keep whining and whining until I win.” He still operates with a one-note tune: “I won!”

Neighbors of Mar-a-Lago neighbors don’t want DDT living there, and they may have a way to get rid of him. A group sent a letter to Palm Beach officials and the Secret Service declaring his agreement in 1993 prevents him from living at Mar-a-Lago after he changed the place from a private residence to a public club. The agreement bans club members from spending more than 21 days and seven consecutive days a year at the facility. In 1993, DDT promised he would not live at Mar-a-Lago and failed to change the agreement. In a case of voter fraud, DDT has already used an out-of-state address to register to vote in Florida. 

DDT also deeded development rights to the National Trust for Historic Preservation with the promise to “forever” use it for “any purpose other than club use.” The controversy may block the Secret Service from preparing Mar-a-Lago as DDT’s home. The neighbors’ letter pointed out, “Palm Beach has many lovely estates for sale, and we are confident President Trump will find one which meets his needs.” DDT won’t even need to buy a place: he owns three other houses near the club, which he has used as rental properties and extra guest suites.

Between the virus and the growing dislike for DDT, Mar-a-Lago isn’t making as much money as in the past. The dozens of charity galas and luncheons during Palm Beach’s winter social season grew fewer after DDT extolled the “very fine people” among white supremacist protesters at Charlottesville over three years ago. Events went from 49 in winter 2014-2015 to nine scheduled this year.

Jared Kushner may find a home behind bars if he’s convicted of campaign fraud. He created a shell company laundering almost $700 million from DDT’s campaign fund, about half the donations. The company, American Made Media Consultants, secretly paid DDT’s family members, illegally spent funds, and siphoned off money for DDT’s family while avoiding disclosure laws. Eric Trump’s wife, Lara; VP Mike Pence’s nephew John Pence; and DDT’s campaign CFO Sean Dollman were on the company’s board as president, vice-president, and treasurer. “Nothing was done without Jared’s approval,” a former 2016 campaign adviser said. The Campaign Legal Center has threatened to sue the FEC, now with three new DDT appointees, if they fail to take action on Kushner’s illegal scheme.

In another scam since DDT lost the election, he collected at least $260 million for his election appeals and re-elections for Georgia senators Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue. Of those donations, at least $60 million went into DDT’s Save America PAC; the senators didn’t get one cent for their campaigns. DDT can spend the money for rallies, staff, groundwork for a 2024 candidacy and other personal expenses.

COVID-19 cases in the U.S. have reached 18 million, and DDT has 32 more days.

October 26, 2020

Congressional Civil War: A Play in Three Acts about the Supreme Court

Today, Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) proudly showed off his new Supreme Court justice, showing the country that she is his third Republican member of the high court who join another three right-wing “justices” for a radical-right supermajority. To prove which side she’s on, he orchestrated her swearing-in at the White House as he did for his first two confirmations. No president has done that.

Act One of the Supreme Court drama began only 38 days ago with the death of wise, intelligent jurist Ruth Bader Ginsburg. The action moved quickly with DDT nominating Amy Coney Barrett almost immediately, before the nation had any time to mourn. With raw bullying power, Senate Republicans rapidly moved her confirmation proceedings through before the public could learn more about her background, and GOP senators deemed her brilliant because she could spout judicial jargon and supposedly care for a family of seven. Their fixation on her children looked like an interview for teacher or day-care worker. None of the “brilliance” came from her answers: she answered almost no questions although admitting that she knows little about science when asked about climate change.

Much was said about her willingness to overturn women’s rights to their own bodies because of the right-to-life positions, preserving life from fertilization to birth. Rights for persons after that are up for grabs except for corporations. Barrett supports the rights of felons to own as many guns as they want but not to vote. Workers lose in her court, but police are rewarded for excessive force. In a dissent from the entire 7th Circuit Court, she argued for a “separate-but-equal” arrangement in a discrimination case. Barrett’s defenders claim no evidence for her rulings against Roe v. Wade, giving women the right to an abortion in the first trimester, but she made two decisions opposing a woman’s right to choose.

Barrett’s religion, the 1,700-member People of Praise “covenant community,” requires “submission” to both its leadership and her husband. As a member of the off-shoot evangelical Catholic group,  Barrett served on the board of its private schools banning children of same-gender parents and refusing to hire openly gay and lesbian teachers. Knowing her discrimination against LGBTQ rights, including her ties to the anti-LGBTQ+ hate group Alliance Defending Freedom, same-gender couples have been lining up to get married before he confirmation. For example, a St. Louis (MO) pastor offered four days of “pop-up elopements” in which 16 same-gender couples married. Florists, bakers, photographers, and other vendors offered free services. Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito have already written about their opposition to marriage quality, claiming Obergefell v. Hodges had “ruinous consequences for religious liberty.”

The hypocrisy of Barrett’s appointment and confirmation was well documented in the media, complete with videos of several senators who claimed four years ago that “the people” should make the decision this soon before an election. Two extremely conservative lawyers who served for Ronald Reagan and W. Bush called Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) a hypocrite after he demanded, four years ago, “the American people should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court justice.” They accused Republicans of politicizing the high court modern-day and undermining public trust in the Supreme Court.

Despite massive protests against the Senate process at this time, Act One ended today with her swearing in by Clarence Thomas, Barrett’s choice.

Act Two began today when five of the eight Supreme Court justices refused to reinstate a lower court order mandating the counting of mailed ballots received up to six days if postmarked by Election Day after the 7th Circuit Court, Barrett’s old home, put the order on hold. The Supreme Court has refused to make decisions about voting within months before Election Day because of the “confusion.” That was when it might benefit Democrats; now all cases benefiting Republicans can be heard in court—even one week before Election Day.

Brett Kavanaugh supported DDT’s myth about “chaos … if thousands of absentee ballots flow in after election day….” To them, late ballots make people believe “the election has been stolen,” instead of understanding that voting is not to be taken lightly and voters are not to be disenfranchised. Justice Elena Kagan responded to Kavanaugh:

“But there are no results to ‘flip’ until all valid votes are counted. And nothing could be more ‘suspicio[us]’ or ‘improp[er]’ than refusing to tally votes once the clock strikes 12 on election night. To suggest otherwise, especially in these fractious times, is to disserve the electoral process.”

Kagan also wrote:

“On the scales of both constitutional justice and electoral accuracy, protecting the right to vote in a health crisis outweighs conforming to a deadline created in safer days.”

“Must have final total by November 3,” DDT tweeted after he slowed down the mail delivery to ensure late ballots cannot be included in the vote, according to his Supreme Court. Neither Kavanaugh nor DDT has any proof for their conspiracy theories. Eighteen states plus DC have allowed ballots to be delivered after Election Day for decades with no problems before DDT began ranting. The six-person Supreme Court radical right could overturn all those laws to put DDT back into the White House. Or make other decisions for the same end.

The Supreme Court has refused to make decisions about voting within months before Election Day because of the “confusion.” That was when it might benefit Democrats; now all cases benefiting Republicans can be heard in court—even one week before Election Day.

That’s Act Two.

Act Three? With the confirmation, Democratic senators pointed out to their Republican “colleagues” they had lost all rights to complain if Democrats take the majority and change rules. In 2017, Republicans dropped the filibuster for Supreme Court nominees, knowing they couldn’t get 12 Democratic votes for any of DDT’s nominees. In 2019, Republicans reduced the debate time for lower court and executive picks, the only way they could get 215 of DDT’s judicial appointments confirmed. Barrett’s confirmation has picked up support within the Senate for expanding the number of justices on the Supreme Court

Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) said:

“Do we just unilaterally stand down and not choose to use the same tools that Republicans did in the majority? … I think there are now new rules in the Senate, and I think Republicans have set them.”

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) warned:

“With this vote, my Republican colleagues forfeit their right to call procedural fouls.” 

And that could be Act Three of DDT’s Supreme Court drama.

McConnell’s win for the Supreme Court and loss of all ethical reputation was at the loss of any stimulus help for the vast majority of people in the U.S. in need. His decision wasn’t good for today’s stock market, DDT’s sole marker for his economy; by closing the Dow Jones clawed its way from a 900-point drop to only 650 points below its opening. In addition to no assistance, COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths are soaring. Oil prices also dropped because of the world’s rising infections. Investors may move their money to Europe where countries are using methods to limit the coronavirus.

The petri dish named White House saw an outbreak of five members of VP Mike Pence’s staff, two of them close to him—his chief of staff and his “body man” whose job is to accompany him 24 hours for help with multiple duties. Pence’s task force requires quarantine for exposure to the virus, but DDT declared Pence an “essential worker” because he flies across the U.S., campaigning for DDT while infecting people in the airplane and at the rallies. Even staunch Republican and former New Jersey governor Chris Christie thought Pence should be in quarantine. Christie spent a week in the hospital, experiencing COVID-19 first hand. Although Pence claims he tested negative, he uses rapid testing equipment, wrong about 30 percent of the time.   

Another disaster over the weekend was an admission from the White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows that the White House has no plan regarding COVID-19. He said the administration isn’t “going to control the pandemic.” The plan to just quit trying to stop the killing of hundreds of thousands of people happened the day before GOP senators confirmed their Supreme Court appointee who will kill health care for tens of millions of people. Tomorrow, the U.S. will surpass 9 million reported cases and kill over 230,000 in the United States.

The official GOP policy regarding coronavirus: It is what it is. No relief for suffering people and no health care for the afflicted, but a new “Christian” in the Supreme Court to push her religion onto everyone. Meadows also said that the White House was hiding the positive virus cases of Pence’s staff.

Pence has a history of not wearing a mask, and he intended to go to the Senate today for Barrett’s confirmation vote. After widespread criticism, he decided to not go.

Shorts of the whining DDT on last Sunday’s Sixty Minutes show his whining and constant interruptions of interviewer Lesley Stahl. as he constantly interrupts and tries to direct interview Lesley Stahl. President Obama said, “If you have to walk out of a 60 Minutes interview, you’re never going to stand up to a dictator.” DDT tried to defend his health plan by giving Stahl a four-inch thick volume—that had no plan. Both DDT’s and Joe Biden’s Sixty Minutes interviews are here. 

October 9, 2020

Debate Civil But Sexist: Highlights

Last night’s vice-presidential debate, the second most watched in history, drew 57 million watchers. Ostensibly, the debate had only two participants, Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) and VP Mike Pence, but the fly who dropped onto Pence’s hair for two minutes and two seconds drew great attention from both serious and comedic commentators. The Biden campaign found the fly useful, not only with the domain name “flywillvote.com” for voter registration but also in its fundraiser request, “Pitch in $5 to help this campaign fly.” The campaign brought in $12 million during the debate. Merchandising also took advantage of flygate, including a commemorative fly swatter with the slogan “truth over flies” for $10.  

Moderator Susan Page of USA Today began the debate sounding firm but, like Chris Wallace with Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) in last week’s debate, soon lost control. Ignoring the moderator, Pence frequently interrupted Harris and demanded she answer his questions when he assumed the role of moderator. Harris calmly responded by saying “Mr. Vice President, I’m speaking” although she occasionally had to repeat the phrase several times. Pence also didn’t respond to Page’s questions by saying, “I want to return to an earlier issue.” He avoided a question about white supremacy by turning to Harris and asked if she and Biden would “pack the [Supreme] Court.”

Pence’s “performance” was supposed to attract the thirty percent of women who DDT had lost in the past few months. His interruptions, patronizing manner, and controlling manner destroyed that possibility. Before the debate, commentators assumed Pence had the edge over Harris because he had been a radio host. Accustomed to radio and not TV, Pence kept his sour face throughout most of the debate. Harris appeared sincere, directly addressing the people. Her former experience as California attorney general and prosecutor gave her the experience to parry any jabs. She knew how to bring home an argument, especially after Pence said DDT had a health plan but couldn’t cite it. DDT is fighting to take health care from people in a Supreme Court case. Looking into the camera, Harris delivered these lines through Page’s interruptions: 

“If you have a pre-existing condition, heart disease, diabetes, breast cancer — they’re coming for you. If you are under 26 and on your parents’ insurance, they are coming for you.”

Pence lied and deflected his way through 90 minutes, and some media criticized Harris for not being pushier. That behavior, however, would result in negative reactions, and Harris already faced the media’s xenophobic, misogynic treatment. One-fourth of the coverage about her selection as vice-president candidate fit into those categories, including references to the “angry black woman” and DDT’s description of her as “nasty,” “mad,” and “mean.” During a New Hampshire rally, DDT insinuated that Harris rose through the ranks by having sex with men.

This article shows how Pence dodged, denied, and lied because he could not defend DDT. Comprehensive fact-checking skipped Pence’s accusation that Harris “tried to impeach” DDT. The vice-president should know the House did impeach DDT and Harris was part of the jury for the impeachment trial.

Pence’s lies were horrifying enough, but the worst part came at the end with Page’s question: 

“President Trump has several times refused to commit himself to a peaceful transfer of power after the election. If vice president Biden is declared the winner and President Trump refuses to accept a peaceful transfer of power, what would be your role and responsibility as vice president? What would you personally do?”

Pence’s response:

“When you talk about accepting the outcome of the election, I must tell you, Senator, your party has spent the last three and a half years trying to overturn the results of the last election.”

He followed this attack with “buzzwords” such as “spied on . . . my campaign,” “Hillary Clinton” and “no obstruction, no collusion.”

Pence’s and DDT’s failure to commit to the law in peacefully transferring power by accepting election results, combined with their reinforcement of white supremacist violence, bodes poorly for a quiet administrative shift, especially with the GOP record of voter suppression through lawsuits, voter purges, mail delivery slowdown, false fraud accusations, etc.  Pence attacked Democrats for impeaching DDT, repeated conspiracy theories about President Obama’s administration, and smeared Hillary Clinton again. He said he had “confidence” in the election only if DDT won and repeated lies about the rampant fraud of mail-in voting.

Early this morning, Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) tweeted

“Democracy isn’t the objective; liberty, peace, and prospefity (sic) are. We want the human condition to flourish. Rank democracy can thwart that.”

Diagnosed with COVID-19, Lee may also be on steroids.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) caused another meltdown from DDT with her planned legislation for a “Commission on Presidential Capacity” intended “to help ensure effective and uninterrupted leadership in the highest office in the Executive Branch of government.” DDT tweeted:

“Crazy Nancy is the one who should be under observation.”

In his own “crazy” moment, DDT is demanding that his enabler AG Bill Barr indict Joe Biden for imaginary crimes before the election.

In the vice-presidential debate with Harris, Pence denied DDT refused to criticize white supremacists in his own debate the week prior although DDT’s statements are on video tape. DDT has consistently blamed the “antifa” (people opposed to fascism) for all violence, but his own FBI director blames white supremacist extremists for much of the domestic terrorism. For example, this headline in Michigan’s Detroit News about its Democratic governor, Gretchen Whitmer: “Plans to kidnap Whitmer, overthrow government spoiled, officials say.” 

Earlier this year, members of the Wolverine Watchmen militia, objecting to the public health lockdown of businesses in the state, marched into the state capitol with semi-automatic rifles and closed down the legislature. After the militia’s protests at the capitol in Lansing, DDT tweeted on May 1:

“The Governor of Michigan should give a little, and put out the fire. These are very good people, but they are angry. They want their lives back again, safely! See them, talk to them, make a deal.”

At least two of the men at the capitol participated in the plot to kidnap Whitmer and take her to a remote location to stand “trial” for treason. Some of the militia surveilled Whitmer’s vacation home, the planned location of the crime, by taking videos and considering the demolition of a nearby bridge to slow law enforcement response. They also held field exercises, testing an explosive.

Whitmer declared DDT “complicit” in fomenting extremists:

“Just last week, the president of the United States stood before the American people and refused to condemn white supremacists and hate groups like these two Michigan militia groups. ‘Stand back and stand by,’ he told them. Stand back and stand by.

“Hate groups heard the president’s words not as a rebuke, but as a rallying cry. As a call to action. When our leaders speak, their words matter. They carry weight. When our leaders meet with, encourage, or fraternize with domestic terrorists, they legitimize their actions and they are complicit.”

Thirteen people, all from Michigan except one, were charged for “elaborate plans’ in the kidnapping and instigating a civil war and overthrowing state governments. FBI and state police arrested several of the conspirators at a meeting where they pooled funds for explosives and exchanged gear. In a congressional hearing last July, AG Bill Barr said he didn’t know the militia  protesters in Michigan called for Whitmer “to be lynched, shot and beheaded” because “there are a lot of protests.”  

DDT attacked Whitmer Thursday because she didn’t criticize antifa.

DDT’s next scheduled debate with Joe Biden, October 15, may be canceled. Saying he doesn’t want to waste his time on a virtual debate, determined by the bipartisan Commission on Presidential Debates, DDT threatens to be a no-show and claimed he might do another campaign rally. Biden’s response to DDT’s refusal is to organize a town hall appearance for himself.

Still on steroids, DDT expressed his fear of Harris on Fox Business this morning. In an hour-long wandering monologue, DDT’s voice sounded rough, he coughed, and he worked to clear his throat. He called Harris a “monster” twice, and a Communist instead of a socialist. Her pearls, ala Jackie Kennedy and Barbara Bush, proper suit, and classy pumps belie DDT’s view as a “monster.”  [harris monster] DDT attacked FBI Director Christopher Wray, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and even loyalist AG Bill Barr. The 74-year-old, obese man with a number of health issues said, “I’m back because I am a perfect physical specimen and I’m extremely young.” And 48 more head-shaking comments from the man on drugs.

The White House still won’t release the time of DDT’s last negative virus test. Some people surmise he was already positive at “The Rose Garden Massacre” where DDT introduced his new Supreme Court nominee, five days before his announcement of the diagnosis.

At this time, DDT is also blaming Gold Star families for infecting him at his Gold Star Mother’s Day event on the day after the “massacre.” In trying to appear selfless, he said he was unable to stop them from touching him although he knew it was dangerous. The joint chiefs of staff are now in quarantine because two military figures, Coast Guard Vice Commandant Charles W. Ray Adm. Charles W. Ray and Assistant Marine Commandant Gen. Gary Thomas, have tested positive for the coronavirus, but none of the families has indicated any infections—yet.

Harris won the debate by more than 30 points and came in ahead of Pence with men by two points. In the UK Guardian, Jill Filipovic wrote:

“There was no real contest in the vice-presidential debate between Kamala Harris and Mike Pence. Harris wiped the floor with him. Pence ignored, patronized and talked over the two women in the room. Her strategy was cool competence. His was sexist entitlement.”

Pence may not have noticed the fly, but this cat did as did former Republican David Frum. Long live the fly!  

August 15, 2020

DDT: Week 186 – Climate Disasters Match Politics

With most of the focus on shenanigans from Dictator Donald Trump (DDT), the media largely ignored the derecho, the devastating storm hitting the Midwest last week. Suffering winds of over 100 miles an hour, Iowa lost 43 percent of its corn and soybean crops—almost ten million acres—and 15 tornadoes in Illinois left 800,000 without power. Four days later, roads have stayed blocked, and almost 133,000 are still without power. Heat alerts and advisories have been called in at least ten states this week, even on the Oregon coast.

The disastrous destruction of the Beirut explosion also wiped out 85 percent of grain silos in the city. The wheat supply goes through Beirut from Russia and Ukraine. A grain terminal and the largest grain elevator were also severely damaged.  

DDT continues to defend his decision to destroy the post office in his mission to be reelected, but the public has become more and more furious about his actions. After the USPS sent letters to 46 states and Washington, DC their ballots will probably be delayed, UPS released this statement to Reuters:

“State ballots must be postmarked to be considered valid, and only the USPS has lawful postmarking status. Therefore UPS, FedEx and other private parties cannot technically be involved in shipping ballots.”

Postmaster General Louis DeJoy has not yet met with election officials who want to ask how the USPS plans to handle the mail-in voting. He has also not scheduled a meeting with a bipartisan group of secretaries of state, responsible for running elections, as they requested.

DDT spends a great deal of time explaining his perception of mail-in voting dangers, but he says nothing about the lack of safeguards against hacking by Russia and the U.S. in voting at the polls. A University of Michigan study reports the first major independent review of machines called ballot-marking devices, or BMDs, used by at least 18 percent of the country’s districts as default voting machines. They provide a paper record of votes for audits as a compromise between paperless voting computers and hand-marked paper ballots. Very few people verify the accuracy of their votes, however, allowing hackers to change the votes without detection. Pennsylvania is suing to block the use of the ExpressVote XL machines after that brand called the wrong winner in a county judge race last year. When using these machines in a simulated election, all 241 people had at least one of their votes changed, only 40 percent reviewed their ballots, and only seven percent told a poll worker about the problem. Even with instruction, no more people checked the results. Only one major bill from Congress sponsored by Ron Wyden (D-OR) mandated hand-marked ballots for security. And DDT never mentions the problem of cybersecurity.

DDT refused to admit that Kamala Harris is eligible to run for vice president.

As of June 30, Biden had said that DDT had not offered him any classified briefings, a traditional courtesy to a presidential candidate who wins the primary. Now, Biden takes more intelligence briefings than Dictator Donald Trump (DDT), the man sitting in the Oval Office and warned about Russia, China, and other foreign countries working to interfere in November’ election. DDT dropped from an average of 4.1 briefings a week to .07 at the present time. Despite tensions around the world, DDT allowed no briefings since July 22, 24 days ago. Biden, on the other hand, has regular briefings to be ready for his new position if he is elected in November. 

In a bipartisan letter to the DOJ, the Senate Intelligence Committee expressed concerns about DDT’s family and allies lying during the Russia investigation testimony. The letter cited Donald Trump Jr, Jared Kushner, Paul Manafort, and Hope Hicks. The committee also seeks an investigation into Steve Bannon for “potentially lying to lawmakers during its investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.” The letter was sent July 19, 2019, but action has not been specified.

DDT’s vaunted trade deal with Mexico and Canada went into effect on July 1; his new ten-percent tariff on aluminum from Canada goes into effect tomorrow.  He announced the tariff on August 6 after he had dropped tariffs on metals from Canada to strike the trade deal. Most North American metal and manufacturing industries oppose the tariff during the COVID-19 economy because tariffs raise costs and kill jobs.

The Russian investigation still eats at DDT, and he’s turning on his FBI director, Christopher Wray. Asked if Wray was withholding documents about investigations of DDT’s former advisers Carter Page and Michael Flynn as well himself, DDT said, “I wish he was more forthcoming. He certainly hasn’t been.” 

 DDT’s problem with Wray continues his antagonism toward his own intelligence agencies. AG Bill Barr said he will release the report of the FBI investigation of DDT’s campaign to swing votes toward DDT, in the same kind of “October surprise” four years ago when FBI Director James Comey interfered with the election by casting doubt on presidential candidate Hillary Clinton ten days before the election.

It’s the year of five words. DDT brags about passing the cognitive test for dementia by making up and repeating five words. VP Mike Pence delivered another five words about Harris at his rally for Mormons: radical, taxes, borders, socialism, abortion. Watch for repetition of these words in the next 80 days. Pence also imitates DDT with his lying, in this case bragging about DDT’s magnificent job creation. Talking to Fox’s Sean Hannity, Pence claimed DDT had “seen us through the worst pandemic in 100 years” and “we’ve already created more jobs in the last three months than Joe Biden and Barack Obama created in their eight years in office.” He then tweeted the lie later. Yes, 9.3 million jobs were added between May and July, yet the U.S. lost 22 million jobs in March and April—still a shortage of 11.7 million jobs. During President Obama’s two terms when Joe Biden was vice president, the U.S. added over 11 million jobs. In other words, the net number of jobs lost in the past four months is about the same as created during the Obama administration. Net change of jobs since DDT’s inauguration is a minus 588,000—the worst jobs record of any president since before World War II.  Plus domestic job growth fell to an eight-year low during DDT’s third year in the Oval Office.

Pence also faces upcoming debates with Kamala Harris. His pretense of confidence was belied by his stutter. He knows he isn’t a good debater and Harris will be very different from four years ago against Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA). The first encounter between Pence and Harris is scheduled for October 7.  

UAE has become the first Gulf Arab state and the third Arab nation following Egypt and Jordan to develop diplomatic ties with Israel. The deal is intended to slow down Israeli annexation of the West Bank while encouraging tourism and trade between the two countries, but it merely approves Israel’s abuse of Palestine with killings, home demolitions, land theft, and apartheid laws. UAE’s shift from supporting Palestinian freedom to

The UAE Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed’s change from supporting Palestinian dignity and freedom to backing Israel’s occupation pretends opposition to Islamic terrorism for his desire to stop democracy and respect for human rights. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo also defends the UAE from its transfer of weapons bought from the U.S. to Al Qaeda-linked groups in Yemen. The UAE tortures prisoners in Yemen and violated a 2011 UN Security Council arms embargo in Libya. The UAE-Israel deal comes from DDT’s obsessive hostility toward Iran and props up three autocratic leaders—DDT, Israel’s PM Benjamin Netanyahu, and bin Zayed at the cost of the Palestinians. The deal is based on DDT’s pretense the Palestinians don’t exist. DDT hopes the agreement will help his reelection, but, between the virus and the unemployment, voters probably won’t care.

Yesterday, the UN defeated U.S. attempts to extend a global arms embargo on Iran, a position supported only by the Dominican Republic supported the U.S. position. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s failure made the U.S. even more isolated on the world stage.

A government watchdog group reported DDT filed “fraudulent” documents to the U.S. government inflating the value of his golf clubs in Ireland and Scotland. Documents show he reported less revenue to UK and Ireland regulators than to the U.S. for the same properties. Both documents inflated the assets to get loans but deflated the value of the same assets for taxes. The American Democracy Legal Fund turned the data over to Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance and the FBI.

DDT brags about the stock market as if it were the entire economy, but it’s the only thing seemingly getting better. Like a “K,” it goes up because the fed puts money into financial markets, and the remainder of the economy goes down:

  • Unemployment at 10.2 percent (highest level since the Great Depression) with closed businesses.
  • Consumer confidence fell in 41 states, 24 points below pre-pandemic average.
  • And people keep getting COVID-19 and dying from it.

On August 15, the U.S. has at least 5,529,789 cases and 172,606 deaths.

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