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August 25, 2019

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Now I think on it more, Real Life for a constitutional monarch is indeed best served by subservience to Her Prime Minister, however daft. Real Life for Her Loyal Subjects is a different story, I imagine.

--TP

https://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/donald-trump-brings-back-manifest-destiny/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xWGAdzn5_KU

Kill.

Real Life for a constitutional monarch is indeed best served by subservience to Her Prime Minister, however daft.

It seems to me that the whole point of a constitutional monarch, especially in a system where there isn't actually a formal written constitution, is precisely to deal with situations like this. That is, where the government is clearly not able to act to prevent an entirely predictable disaster.

Certainly its not something that one would like to see used often or capriciously. But as a fail-safe it seems like a good idea to use it.

Today we turned into a banana republic. I'm sick and tired of this - do they have no decency at all? At least they put Salvini back in his box.

novakant,
well, what did 'we' do?

'We', i.e. the unelected, ethically challenged narcissist running our wretched country, prorogued, i.e. suspended parliament to force a no-deal Brexit through without any democratic scrutiny simply by running down the clock.

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/aug/28/mps-call-for-drastic-action-against-prorogation-of-parliament

The UK parliament is in a bit of a pickle. If it prevents Brexit, it'll be accused of usurping democracy. A majority of voters voted for Brexit. If it follows through with Brexit, it will be blamed for none of the good and all of the bad that follows from it.

It seems to me that the whole point of a constitutional monarch, especially in a system where there isn't actually a formal written constitution, is precisely to deal with situations like this.

I don't remember enough history in detail these days, but do seem to recall that the English Civil Wars established the precedent that the monarchy, and any powers the monarch has to mess in the government, exist at the pleasure of Parliament. At one of the British blogs I read, since Brexit turned into this mess, it is a regular thing for someone to ask, "Couldn't the Queen do such-and-such?" The answer from people that I know to be British is almost always of the form, "Yes. Once." The implication being that the first time the monarch actually exercises one of those powers, Parliament will strip them of the ability to do so ever again.

Assuming I've got that right, the Queen has to consider whether each point where she could affect Brexit is the existential threat for which she should use that one shot.

Nigel, did I get that approximately right?

Not really.
It’s clearly within the power of the PM to request a prorogation, and the queen does not get to second guess that. The only issue in this case is the highly unusual length of prorogation, particularly given the political circumstances.

The outrage here is a political one - while it is undeniably exploiting a constitutional lacuna, and seriously violating longstanding conventions, that has not been something which the monarch can weigh in on for many, many decades.

If the PM can ask for (and be granted) a prorogation of any length he likes, there's nothing to stop him from asking for one which is several years long. That is, from effectively removing Parliament from having any influence over how the government behaves. There wouldn't even be the opportunity for a vote of No Confidence -- even if the vast majority of the MPs wished to force a new election.

I can see where he should be able to get a prorogation of the usual length. But that's very different from getting one of vastly greater length.

At which point it becomes a where do you draw the line question, to which there is no clear answer.
We may have one soon(ish), as this will get tested in the courts. Not much help in the meantime, of course.

https://www.balloon-juice.com/2019/08/28/foreigner-policy-open-thread-the-trump-miller-eff-you-john-mccain-order/

The military should violently revolt.

Well, in this case he has the fig leaf of "new PM, so new legislative agenda, which needs new Queen's Speech (i.e new opening of Parliament in which she always lays out the legislative agenda for the coming parliament)". If he didn't have that, the precedent would be a lot shakier.

https://digbysblog.blogspot.com/2019/08/greedheads-hire-professional.html

“They’ve got to walk into the room with someone who knows the White House,” said one of the people familiar with the arrangement. “They need someone to explain how the Trump thing operates.”

I'd be happy to give pro bono advice to these corrupt corporate influence peddlers regarding how the "Trump thing" operates:

You suck this lying c*nt's big Christian dick, and she'll suck off the vermin who she believes is the Godhead on your behalf.

Someone will let you know what offshore bank accounts to send the payoffs to.

Also, these filth will renege on every quid pro quo they promise you, unless it has to do with killing government or the Other.

The family needs a taste too. Enjoy the room service during your obligated high-rent overnight at Mar-a-Lago

Nuke America.

"you're"

An apostrophe for a mushroom cloud.

Also, re extra long prorogation, the party conference season runs most of September. So they've got a few ways to throw dust (or wave smoke and mirrors) in the eyes of objectors.

forget "you're"

GFTNC is correct, although such pretexts are utterly disingenuous in the circumstances.

The constitutional position is underscored by the fact that any legal challenge will be to the advice to prorogue given to the queen by the PM - the exercise of the royal prerogative by the monarch cannot be challenged in the courts.

I can imagine the queen refusing to oblige in some circumstances, but not these. First, the government has considerable popular support in what it's doing - it is after all implementing the result of a referendum. Second, parliament will not be prorogued until 9th September, so if MPs are sufficiently determined they can still vote on anything they want. (The Speaker, who is openly hostile to what the government is doing, would be keen to facilitate that.)

Incidentally, should the queen decline to agree to an act of Parliament (not quite the same thing) her refusal is formally communicated in Norman French "La Reyne s'avisera" - the Queen will take advice. Queen Anne was the last monarch to try it, over three hundred years ago.

Mattis is full of shit.

https://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/mattis-silence-trump-not-forever

NOW he's reticent about the mortal enemies of America.

Fuck him.

You kill us, we kill you:

https://www.thedailybeast.com/climate-change-trump-administration-set-to-roll-back-rules-on-methane-emissions?via=newsletter&source=CSAMedition

More on Bore:

https://www.balloon-juice.com/2019/08/29/britain-has-a-choice/

On the bright side, TPM remembers the trash cans I bought a year ago, judging by the ad on the side of the page.

Mattis thinks he should not call a madman crazy because The Rules require a vow of silence. He imagines he is doing the honorable thing, whereas he is merely demonstrating yet again that politics-as-hopscotch has eaten all the brains in the so-called civilized world.

--TP

There's more to BoJo's tactics than BaJu says. His negotiating position with the EU is much stronger if the EU doesn't believe parliament is going to block no deal. So if we're going to leave the EU, which seems likely, and if the current deal is worse than no deal, which is not an irrational view, it's in the country's interest for parliament not to be trying to stop it.

It's as if I'm standing in your living room waving a machete and saying "give me $100 or I'll cut my foot off and bleed on the carpet". I'm more likely to get the hundred if my friend isn't busy trying to grap the machete off me.

Pro Bono:

"hang on for a second with the foot-cutting-off; I need to start the video recording.

Got it! Please proceed."

I'd be fairly relieved if a crazy machete wielder used it on himself rather than me.

Carpets can be cleaned.

if the current deal is worse than no deal, which is not an irrational view

I'd be interested in hearing a rational argument for how the current deal is worse than no deal. I sure don't see the economic impact as being worse; quite the contrary, no deal looks like an economic disaster.

I've been making the same (theoretical) argument to friends that Pro Bono outlines, but with no great degree of enthusiasm or conviction, let alone certainty. But it is true that after the G7 in Biarritz BoJo was apparently talking about a possible backlash from the group of die-hard Brexiteers he apparently calls "the Spartans" in response to some of his provisional concessions from the EU, and it is possible that he has some such end-game in sight to frustrate them, as well as the combined opposition. But looking at the statements from e.g. Jacob Rees-Mogg, who I would have thought would definitely be one of the Spartans, one sees no sign of it.

It's as if I'm standing in your living room waving a machete and saying "give me $100 or I'll cut my foot off and bleed on the carpet". I'm more likely to get the hundred if my friend isn't busy trying to grap the machete off me.

I'm familiar wit the negotiating theory of the crazy man: That you don't know what he might do, so you should give him whatever he is asking for. I think it's fair to say that the Trump experience in international negotiations demonstrates that it doesn't work. Certainly not with any reliability.

Pro Bono,

You forget some things. First of all, the British have hurt our feelings. A lot. Leaving the Umion is, even in the best circumstances, a huge affront to those remaining.

Second, the British government has demonstrated inability to get its negotiation results through the Parliament. There is no majority coalition visible that could get any result accepted.

Third, there is absolutely no way to get a deal without the Irish backstop, or a final solution. Ireland is a member, and we are bound to take their side. And they have a veto in every deal. So, keeping the Irish border open, and free of customs, requires either UK to stay in the customs union, or Northern Ireland staying. There is no third way. If the British are not willing to accept it, we will eventually have a no-deal Brexit anyhow.

So, why should we postpone the no-deal Brexit anymore? It is better for us to have the Englishmen leave the Union, where they have always been unenthusiastic, feet-dragging members. If the British leave now, it will create stability in Europe, and allow orderly development of our economy. Any further extra time for negotiations is only going to prolonge the inevitable, hurting our economy.

Then, we can start supporting the development of democracy and eventual independence and EU membership of Scotland and Northern Ireland. Let the English go to hell.

please, not Biden.

wj: the argument is that if you're going to suffer the economic pain of Brexit, you might as well do it properly and get the benefits (in the eyes of some) of being genuinely independent of the EU.

But to be clear, I'm thoroughly opposed to the whole project, all the more so for having seen the mess the politicians have made of trying to implement it.

And I don't think the EU will be willing to offer very much whatever the threat: certainly it's not going to betray the thoroughly communautaire Irish government.

Ham Sandwich.

Any port in a storm.

please, not Biden.

There goes McKinney's vote, too.

p wins.

Ham Sandwich.

So you're waffling on the waffle-underwear thing now, russell?

Pro Bono,

I agree. Ireland is more important to the EU at the moment than Great Britain: we can demonstrate actual committment to our members by supporting Ireland, and earn credibility in the eyes of numerous small member states in the process. On the other hand, Britain doesn't have a lot to offer at the moment.

It has become abundantly clear that there will not be a parliamentary majority for any of the three possible solutions:
a) Brexit with a solution that allows an open Irish border (at least Northern Ireland in the customs union)
b) no-deal Brexit
c) remain

Because Great Britain has already triggered Article 58, its withdrawal is only a question of time. A single EU member can veto any prolongation of negotiations, and that can happen at any time, depending on domestic politics. So, the prolongation only causes lack of clarity, and decreases economic stability of the Union. For us, a no-deal Brexit is survivable, and as it is unavoidable, it is better to have it sooner than later.

After that, we can start supporting Scottish and Northern Irish independence, and allow them into the Union, if their peoples so choose. Let the English continue stewing in their on pot. Perhaps prince Charles will die as a King of Wessex.

Any pork in a storm

this is delightful...

On Monday morning, President Trump told reporters in Biarritz, France, that "China called last night" and said they want to resume trade talks, later elaborating that two "high-level" Chinese officials had called to try and restart stalled negotiations. He turned to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin for backup, and Mnuchin said there had been "communication," later amending it to "communications."

Well, "aides privately conceded the phone calls Trump described didn't happen the way he said they did," CNN reported Wednesday. "Instead, two officials said Trump was eager to project optimism that might boost markets, and conflated comments from China's vice premier with direct communication from the Chinese."

https://theweek.com/speedreads/861872/trump-made-highlevel-chinese-tradetalk-calls-boost-markets-aides-admit

i'll vote for Biden.

but i really don't relish the idea of four years of "he may be a bullshitter, but at least he's my bullshitter".

the Trump years are soul-crushing enough.

i know... i should take my own advice and not complain about any particular Dem at this point in time.

arrrrrrrgh! i just want good things.

Well Trump appears to have attended a different G-7 meeting that everyone else. One that existed only in his imagination.

Among the other Trump-only bits:

  • Japan has agreed to a new trade deal. (Nope, only an agreement in principal, with lots of details yet to be worked out.)
  • Trump claimed to have gotten two phone calls on Sunday night from high-ranking Chinese officials seeking to negotiate a trade deal. (China says the calls never happened.)
  • Trump claimed that his trade was with China is popular with the other G-7 leaders. (Not even a little bit. Even Boris Johnson disagreed publicly.)
  • Trump argued that a number of people that would like to see Russia back. (In fact, only Italy expressed even a little support. Everybody else was instantly, strongly, and repeatedly, negative.)
Not to mention him tweeting repeatedly about how everybody was in agreement, and lots was getting accomplished. Well it might be true that everybody but him was in agreement about lots of issues. But that's about the limit.

Biden's bullshit is standard issue bullshit, albeit with a little too much knee-slapping enthusiasm, of the standard American-become-bullshit artist politician, which all of us have in us, merely by virtue growing up American in a trouble in river city culture which turns bullshit into profit and gold at every turn and is so proud of it that we put it down as cherry tree, all men are created equal myth in our textbooks, by cracky.

It's the routine kind of bullshit you sit in public meetings or picnics at the fairground with a cookie in your hand and shake your head over, nudging your neighbor and asking "He's kidding, right?", but survive to walk home intact with your wits still about you.

p and the conservative movement are radioactive rare earth mushroom cloud bullshit that blot out the sun and contaminate every living thing, including the bottom dwelling creatures in the Marianas Trench.

It has no half-life.

It bears no parsing.

It burns the skin off and goes to live permanently at the cellular level in the American bone structure.

There is no Hazmat suit that will protect us.

Even crocodiles, which go into long-term stasis and survive when asteroids and other calamities hit say "ah, fuck this!" and curl up and die.

Once p's and the conservative movement's brand of bullshit is fully released into the cultural/political environment/atmosphere, abandoning its location, America, and nuking from space, are the only alternatives.

It must be killed, eliminated.

By all means necessary.


Question for the UK people -- what do you think about Ireland these days? I heard Fintan O'Toole of The Irish Times on the radio several months ago, saying (in memorably Irish fashion) that there's not a cigarette paper's width of difference between the positions of the Irish government and the EU about options.

Regardless of that, as time passes it seems ever more unlikely that the border is going to remain as it is, i.e. non-existent, and ever more likely that trouble is going to start up again, one way another.

A typical offering from one of the more vicious (and I would say brainless, except that if I look at our own government I have to face the fact that brainlessness doesn't matter) commenters at Crooked Timber, with the handle "Dipper":

I’m not sure the EU, or at least many off the leading politics, have thought through where this goes in the long run. People talk about Ireland and the UK as if they were countries with equal rights, but one is many times the size of the other. It isn’t possible long term to make 65 million subordinate to 5 million. And those Leave voters everyone likes to ridicule, if they were a nation it would be the 8th biggest nation in the EU. No matter how bad things look now, they can get a lot worse.

Gorilla thumping chest. Unfortunately, a lot of people go for that. Bigger countries have more "rights" -- okay................

I crossed the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland in the bad old days. What a shame to think of that darkness creeping back in.

wj at 03.54: Well Trump appears to have attended a different G-7 meeting that everyone else. One that existed only in his imagination.

You omit from your list that in the one in his imagination

1. "Melania knows Kim Jong Un well" (despite never having met him)

and in a tweet on August 25th:

2. The question I was asked most today by fellow World Leaders, who think the USA is doing so well and is stronger than ever before, happens to be, “Mr. President, why does the American media hate your Country so much? Why are they rooting for it to fail?”

I'd be interested in hearing a rational argument for how the current deal is worse than no deal ...

There really isn’t one.

Unless the welfare of the UK and it’s citizens is extraneous to one’s concerns.

Its.

It depends whether by "the current deal" you mean Theresa May's deal (still on the table from the EU), or the current deal we have as a member state. Oh no, silly me, I guess it doesn't: in both cases the deal is better than no deal.

GftNC, trying to compile a complete list of Trump's flights of unreality is a hopeless task. At most, one can manage a selection of the high low points.

So you're waffling on the waffle-underwear thing now, russell?

What Marty said.

Biden is a confabulating geezer. We have a long, long tradition of confabulating geezers in the Oval Office.

What he is not, is malicious.

Not my first choice, but I'll take the non-malicious confabulating geezer if that's what is on offer.

Of course he is:

https://digbysblog.blogspot.com/2019/08/which-family-members-did-he-tell-in.html

No doubt Putin got a taste too.

When this lout is gone, his and his entire retinue's cellphone and all other communication records will be combed over for the buy and sell touts and the perpetrators will be executed.

I'd like to see the tells in Kudlow's signals to Cramer.

And Mnuchin's to EVERYONE on Wall Street.

Imagine someone along the lines of Steve Bannon (though a more effective propagandist) as White House Chief of Staff...

That’s pretty well what the Johnson government has:
https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/sajid-javid-media-adviser-dominic-cummings_uk_5d6821e3e4b06beb649b44bd
Chancellor Sajid Javid’s media adviser been escorted out of Downing St after a meeting with the prime minister’s top strategist where she appears to have been fired.

A source said Dominic Cummings, Boris Johnson’s leading aide, had invited her for a meeting in No.10...

Question for the UK people -- what do you think about Ireland these days?

I think the Good Friday Agreement was a masterpiece of compromise by vagueness, depending on the twin notions of Northern Ireland as an integral part of the UK, and Northern Ireland seamlessly joined to the Irish Republic. Which worked only because both countries were in the EU. It can't hold with the UK outside the EU (except perhaps with a Customs Union).

The "backstop" agreement, to apply until some unknown replacement agreement is reached, addresses the Nationalist side of the issue. But it's unacceptable to Unionists because it treats Northern Ireland differently from the rest of the UK (it has to stay in regulatory alignment with the EU). And it's unacceptable to Brexiters because it requires a Customs Union between the UK and the EU.

The problem isn't that the wonks haven't tried hard enough to come up with a solution. It's that there are no unicorns.

The "no deal" approach seems to be that the EU will put it whatever border checks it thinks necessary, and the UK will do its best to blame the EU for doing it. And there will be much discontent, especially among Northern Irish nationalists.

The "no deal" approach seems to be that the EU will put it whatever border checks it thinks necessary, and the UK will do its best to blame the EU for doing it. And there will be much discontent, especially among Northern Irish nationalists.

And here I was sure that the "no deal" approach was "we [English Brexiteers] want what we want, and the rest of the country can bugger off." The problem is that, while the Scots (and, for all I know, the Welsh) can pick up and leave the UK for the EU, the Irish Unionists take that sensible approach off the table for the Irish.

the Irish Unionists take that sensible approach off the table for the Irish.

I suppose in practice that's true, but the majority rules idea can be considered fractally, at least for entertainment purposes. If the majority of Brits want to leave the EU, then they can. If the majority of voters in Northern Ireland want to leave the UK, then...........

I believe the North voted to Remain in the EU, it's only an intransigent minority that in effect wants a return to the bad old days. I don't know how the North would vote to leave the UK, nor is it clear that the Republic would want the North anyhow. (Apparently it's a money sink, I don't know why.)

I've probably told this story before, but I have a vivid memory of some guy on the radio going on and on about how if the majority in Kosovo wanted to split off from Serbia, Kosovo should be allowed to become independent. And in the next breath he said that a border city (I can't remember which one) where the majority wanted to stay with Serbia shouldn't be allowed to.

Bah.

As Pro Bono says, there are no unicorns. There's no magic way to thread a path between the devil and the deep blue sea, the rock and the hard place, Scylla and Charybdis.

his and his entire retinue's cellphone and all other communication records will be combed over

And who is going to do this? Who, in Congress, in the courts, in the DOJ - who, exactly - has demonstrated the will to actually call this dude out and hold him accountable, for any damned thing at all?

The House can't even get their hands on his tax returns.

My expectation is that he and his corrupt kids and his entourage of grifters will ride off happily into the sunset. If we're lucky.

If the majority of Brits want to leave the EU, then they can. If the majority of voters in Northern Ireland want to leave the UK, then...........

Not, unfortunately, true. For absent the Good Friday agreement (or some similar finesse), which Brexit effectively destroys, there are only two choices: unite all of Ireland, or return to the hard border.

Either way there will be a motivated minority of a minority willing to resort to violence. And it will be The Troubles all over again. In spades. No matter what the majority might want.

his and his entire retinue's cellphone and all other communication records will be combed over

And who is going to do this?

My money would be on some investigative reporters. Heaven knows there are enough leakers around Trump to give them plenty to work with.

me: If the majority of voters in Northern Ireland want to leave the UK, then...........

wj: Not, unfortunately, true. For absent the Good Friday agreement (or some similar finesse), which Brexit effectively destroys, there are only two choices: unite all of Ireland, or return to the hard border.

What do you think my ellipsis meant if not "unite all of Ireland"? And in that case, why are you saying "not ... true"? You're agreeing with me.

You're agreeing with me.

I somehow missed that you were predicting something totally unlike England's peaceful (albeit economically disastrous) departure.

My money would be on some investigative reporters.

Given the winnowing and consolidation of the industry...a dying breed at best.

Wish the few that remain the best of luck. They will need it.

I wasn't predicting it. I was postulating it as a theoretical possibility (or as I said, an entertainment).

I left step 2 as tacit, where step 1 is "leave the UK" and step 2 is "join in a united Ireland," because in my own mind step 2 is so obviously the follow-up to step 1 as not to need mentioning. Nowhere in the realm of either discussion or possibility (IMO) is there a scenario where N.I. leaves the UK but becomes an independent country instead of becoming part of the Republic of Ireland. (Unlike Scotland as an independent country, in terms of both discussion and possibility.)

No doubt about steps 1 and 2. It's step 3 that's worrisome.

I would be happy to see Scotland as an independent country, but I have strong doubts about its practicality.

An independent Scotland would either be an EU country or not. If not an EU country, it would gain little from independence, because it would still be beholden to British trade politics and regulation. If an EU member, Scotland would have more independence, but there would be a hard border at Tweed.

Weel, basically the division of the UK can cgo all the way to the point where Prince William will succeed his father as a king of the United Kingdom of Essex and Kent. :-)

I'm guessing any hard border at the Tweed would be temporary. Because, in a decade or so, the damage to England from a hard Brexit will leave the Brexiteers about as popular as communists in eastern Germany.

Richly deserved, of course. But the price paid by those who never wanted it is, as so often with these things, too high.

My money would be on some investigative reporters

What are they going to find that will be any worse than what is already in the publuc record?


I think Pro Bono's masterly exposition of the Irish question at 08.34 cannot be bettered, but with this additional wrinkle: Nancy Pelosi has said Congress will not OK any US-UK trade deal which endangers the Good Friday Agreement, so the vaunted prospective Trump-Bojo trade deal is already in the deepest of trouble, unless BoJo is secretly working on a deal to keep us in the Customs Union, which would of course completely alienate the "Spartans".

p's Deep State goes deeper:

https://juanitajean.com/can-you-even-imagine-2/

Can you ...... imagine, this call going out in say, 2013 and DARPA deciding ... Texas ... might be a good site for their dark experiments on behalf of the Kenyan?

Saddle up the right wing militias. Whatever happened to them, anyhoo?

They get gummint jobs with ICE, or what?

What is it this time?

Are they planning on mulching immigrants into soylent green wafers for communion in orthodox right wing churches?

Kill the conservative movement.

Remember when vermin victimized conservatives complained about NPR giving both sides of the story:

http://crookedtimber.org/2019/08/30/the-missing-question/

I still listen to the classical music outlets.

They seem to be playing more Wagner these days, however, I would guess at the urging of budget cutter Mick Mulvaney.

No doubt, republican conservative Pat Robertson agrees. Jerry Fallwell Jr. would agree but now that he and his wife are consorting in high finance with those of questionable sexuality, or any at all, why, he's hoping they call off weather all together, as he puts on his galoshes:

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/ex-canadian-leader-says-she-hopes-hurricane-dorian-makes-direct-hit-on-trumps-mar-a-lago-2019-08-30?siteid=bigcharts&dist=bigcharts

They aspired to this type of politics and indeed achieved their goals with it over the past 40 years and now the wind blows in t'other direction.

More of this, please.

Sideways hail the size of p's balls should take the varnish off Mar-a-Lago.

What are they going to find that will be any worse than what is already in the publuc record?

"Worse" in whose eyes? Given what we already know, the target audience would have to be those who aren't already convinced of the obvious (to us). What it would take, I don't know. I also don't know what an investigation would find -- either in substance or how smoking a gun. That, after all, is why one does an investigation.

And, at the rate Trump has been trash-talking Fox News, any findings might actually appear in Trump World's "trusted news sourse." Certainly I've seen some signs of them pushing back on his demands for more total syncophancy.

NPR

A case study in the perils of bending over backwards to avoid seeming like you're "taking sides".

They seem to be playing more Wagner these days

NPR classical in my market is all Haydn and Vivaldi. Enough already with the pompous massed strings. I feel like I should be wearing a powdered wig.

I like these guys for general purpose going-about-your-day classical listening:

https://www.radio.net/s/veniceclassic

Announcements in Italian are a bonus!

And WRTI in Philly has more thoughtful - actually intentional, not just the obvious stuff - classical programming, for whenever you want to really pay attention:

https://www.wrti.org/classical-programs

Interruptions for news, but they're fairly brief.

p's Deep State goes deeper

My first thought was: Why don't they use all those tunnels in southern Nevada which were intended to store nuclear waste? It's not like they are going to be used for their intended purpose any time soon. And we already own them. (Which, admittedly, may be a negative since it removes an opportunity for corruption. But hey, it might free up money for the wall.)

that Trump Fox stuff is really amazing. he actually said "Fox isn’t working for us anymore!”

he straight-up, publicly, acknowledged that he thinks they work for him. not that they're the only outlet that's fair to him, but that they work for him. the former falls into the category of delusion; but the latter tells us that he knows it's all a con.

and, it say a lot about his sense of loyalty - he has none. of all the organizations for him to diss, Fox News should be dead last. he owes them everything. but because he can't tolerate even the the slightest criticism, they're on his shit list.

his supporters should put two and two together and realize that this con-man is only on his own side. but they won't.

For Trump, loyalty is a one-way street.

So those deluded Trumpers need to learn: you can't trust Trump any further than you can throw him.

Me? I'd *like* to trust Trump, and I have a trebuchet right here...

he straight-up, publicly, acknowledged that he thinks they work for him.

At no point has it ever been anything other than plainly obvious who and what Trump is.

For some folks that's what they like about him. Other folks try to pretend it's not so, regardless of how many ways that requires them to bend reality. And other folks clutch their pearls but can't seem to find their way to actually doing anything about it.

Trump is a crook. He is a bully and a bullshit artist and a grifter. That is who he is, and who he has always been. That's what his old man was, it's what his kids are, and what he is.

The fact that Trump plainly states that he thinks Fox works for him is unremarkable. I'm not making a critical comment about your post, because it *should* be remarkable, and *should* inspire outrage.

But it's just not remarkable enough for anyone in a position to do anything about it, to do anything about it.

We're stuck with this guy until January 2021, and maybe beyond. Whatever institutions or norms or practices are supposed to prevent a character like Trump from holding a position of public responsibility have failed to do so.

It's disturbing, but it's the reality. The thing the founders were so concerned about - a partisan huckster who would exploit democratic process to undermine republican governance - has come to pass.

We need to vote the mf'er out and then look at patching up the holes that let him get in, and fixing the stuff he's breaking.

I'm not sure the damage from another 4 years of the guy will be reversible. I'm quite serious about that.

The folks who make me shake my head more than anyone are the (D)'s in the House. ITMFA. Short of that, start dropping some serious legal whoop-ass on all of the punks who are impeding the various ongoing investigations.

Impeach Barr. Tell McGahn he's gonna be arrested if he continues to refuse to testify. And then *by god arrest him and put his ass in jail*.
Freeze the assets of Deutsche Bank if they won't cough up Trump's financials. Or, you know, fine them a billion dollars a day.

If none of those things pass legal muster, come up with others. Options are out there. The House (D)'s have power they are not exercising.

Get creative. Knock heads. Be hard-asses. Quit taking shit off of Trump and his pals. They're bullies, they'll keep dishing it out as long as everybody else takes it.

I'm tired of seeing this country pissed on by greedy grifting punks. Take it to the freaking mat.

Fucking Nazis are no longer afraid to show their pasty white faces in public. While Trump tries to book the next G7 at his golf club.

We're being trolled by our own government. Enough of this bullshit. Time to kick ass and take names.

Tell McGahn he's gonna be arrested if he continues to refuse to testify. And then *by god arrest him and put his ass in jail*.

In the normal course of events, it would be the Department of Justice (in the person of the FBI) which would do the arresting. But in the current extremity, the Sergeant at Arms of the House may need to step up. Given that we're not actually talking about an armed suspect here, that should be doable.

Which then raises the question, without the cooperation of the Federal Bureau of Prisons (not likely), where do you put him in jail? My understanding is that Congress no longer has an actual jail. But surely a supply closet or something can be found.

Lock him the coat room.

The coat room seems excessively plush. This isn't supposed to be that; it's supposed to be a motivator. Stick to a supply closet.

;)

obviously i'm all for voting him out. but i fear just voting him out isn't going to cure us of the disease he's been cultivating.

unless something convinces his supporters to truly reject him, they'll just fall into comfortable conspiracies about fake news and liberal deep state scheming; the disease will linger.

the House leadership has been a huge disappointment on this. such cowardice.

bah

Even if his supporters completely reject him, those other things(fake news, liberal "deep" state crimes, pointed media bias at all levels against conservatives, liberal desire to rewrite the constitution, focus on socialist agendas, desire for open borders) all will still be true. Trump is mostly the symptom, exacerbating the problem at every turn, but only a very limited part of the problem.

out here in the real world, not so much.

Journalists are supposed to be biased against lies.

....those other things(fake news, liberal "deep" state crimes, pointed media bias at all levels against conservatives, liberal desire to rewrite the constitution, focus on socialist agendas, desire for open borders) all will still be true.

In point of fact, none of this is "true" in any meaningful sense of the word, and is simply projection on your part. Let's go down the list:

Liberal 'deep state' crimes. Ah. At last the right is buying into the concept of the 'deep state' so fondly put out there by the Left. Thus we get Glenn Greenwald appearing often on Tucker Carlson's white nationalist TV show. If you can't beat 'em, join 'em.

Pointed Media Bias: FOX News. "Liberal" NYT goes all in for Bush war in Iraq. Washington Post pet peeve decrying cost of Medicare and Social Security. What the fuck are you talking about? MSNBC with its couple hundred thousand viewers? Are you daft?

Rewriting the Constitution: Shelby County v. Holder was a totally lawless decision. More here.

Socialist Agendas. Gene Debs was a socialist. Bernie Sanders is not. No Democrat of any note has called for the dictatorship of the proletariat.

Open borders? Sez you. This is a canard. It is a lie. Personally, I see no problem considering open borders, but then I am not a typical member of the Democratic Party.

Time to kick ass and take names.

Indeed. Anybody have any ideas?

The White House should be surrounded by 500,000 people 24/7 shouting "fuck you. fuck you."

The House? How about using its fiscal authority as aggressively as the administration pushes its executive authority? Appoint a fascist federal judge? Defund and/or abolish that position. Defund ICE.

Trump is mostly the symptom, exacerbating the problem at every turn, but only a very limited part of the problem.

i stand corrected!

the disease is, apparently, Republicanism.

Trumpism is just an opportunistic infection, enjoying the body politic's weakened immune system.

Of course the disease is conservatism, perhaps a Republican version. Trump just let's you hate people who disagree with your policies because Trumpism let's you equate those things with evil motives.

Trump is mostly the symptom, exacerbating the problem at every turn, but only a very limited part of the problem.

Sometimes, when you have a serious problem, the only thing you can do initially is stop making the problem worse. (See the old line about "when you are in a hole, the first thing to do is stop digging.") So dealing with Trump is something which can realistically be done, and relatively soon.

Dealing with all the other stuff that is wrong does need to be done. But it's something that is going to take decades, not a couple of years. And we don't want to make the mistake of letting the perfect solution be the enemy of doing something good.

Or it can never be dealt with because there will always be people with legitimate differing opinions.

I'm willing to believe that there's a true conservative somewhere, perhaps living on a remote island with a true socialist, a true Catholic, and a true Scotsman, earnestly debating how best to arrange their affairs.

And then there's the Republican Party. Which would happily change anything, including the climate, to make the rich richer, and to hold on to power which its popular support does not in a democracy warrant. If that's what conservatism means, then it is indeed an evil thing.

legitimate differing opinions.

your poisonous fantasies about what liberals are, do and want aren't legitimate differing opinions. they're delusions.

seek help

How about using its fiscal authority as aggressively as the administration pushes its executive authority

Now, that's what I'm talking about!!

Trump just let's you hate people who disagree with your policies because Trumpism let's you equate those things with evil motives.

I guess you could look at it that way.

Another way to look at it is that there are tons of people who are more than happy to support Trump if it means their favorite policies prevail.

I.e., Trump just lets you get your way, even if it means handing the keys of governance over to people with transparently bad motives. Including some honest-to-god fascists and Nazis. Imagine that.

And I'm not interested in lectures about hate at a time when Nazis run around in broad daylight and people get shot for shopping while brown.

I disagree with pretty much every modern American conservative position, but I have no problem talking with people about it all, and to date I have managed to not hate anybody over stuff like that. Or over much of anything.

What's going on now - what has "people like me" up in arms - is not a conversation about differing points of view. It's about a corrupt executive being protected by the actors who are supposed to be holding him to account. And it's about yet another fucking resurgence of the bloody murderous fantasy of white supremacy raising it's damned head, with one of the two national parties happy to look the other way if not openly embrace it if that makes their "base" happy.

Want to talk about "differences of opinion", dump Trump and don't bring the Nazis and the guns. Keep Trump and/or bring the Nazis and the guns, and there will be no conversation.

Trump's a bridge too far, dude. Conservatives should be hiding their heads in shame.

I am not a US liberal but putting myself into the position of one I'd freely admit that I indeed would like to revise the Constitution (preferably by the path devised in it but, if given the powers, even over objections).
For starters I'd put a lot of stuff that until now only rests on vague wording, shaky tradition and precedent in clear and unambiguous words.
I would add several amendments including one putting severe restrictions on presidential pardon powers aimed at self-dealing. No blank pardons, no pardons in advance of trial, no pardons for crimes committed by or on behalf of the administration etc. And abuse or even attempted abuse of pardon powers would become an unpardonable crime.
Federal elections would get federalized and any attempt to interfere with the right of citizens to vote in federal elections would become another unpardonable crime and cost the perpetrator the right to hold any office of public trust for life.
I have quite some more ideas but will not stretch your patience with more of them at the moment.

As a moderate I will reluctantly abstain from any amendements or bills of attainder concerning boiling oil applications to the corrupt and despicable of the McConnell and Gingrich variety or mandatory testing of non-fatal methods to break all 210 bones in the average human body on the same group.

What conservative principle requires caging children and denying them basic hygene?

Can I buy an i?

Hartmut for President.

Trumpism is just an opportunistic infection, enjoying the body politic's weakened immune system.

Whether the disease is Republicanism, or what passes for it these days, or a combination of things, I think this definition of cleek's is a pretty perfect diagnosis.

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