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October 10, 2019

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This is not the Constitutional Crisis you're looking for.

Actually, I think it may be.

No question there were a plethora of "high crimes and misdemeanors" in evidence previously. And it was infuriating not to see them acted upon.

But for those who are not political junkies (i.e. not us), a lot of the details were abstract and obscure. Not that they couldn't have been educated, with a lot of time and effort, but the Trump noise machine would have made it difficult. The Ukraine thing is obvious -- nothing abstract or obscure about extortion. And with Trump, or some idiot in his staff, putting out that call summary, there's no problem getting tapes (if any); confession overrides most arguments about evidence.

The other, unlooked-for but not to be discounted, plus about now is Syria. Not only upsetting a lot of Republican Senators. Also a lot of evangelical leaders are being loudly unhappy . . . which helps give those GOP Senators cover if they vote Trump out.

Yes, a lot of people voted for this mess. And a lot of them can't even plead ignorance. But it increasingly looks like they aren't happy enough to re-up. Even if the Senate doesn't remove him.

Cynical me fears that many on the Right are A OK with the US extorting foreign governments (the other way around is of course anathema). It may be for His The Donald's main benefit in this case but it also should help the GOP electionwise, so that makes it even more OK.
Moss Cow Midge even uses his personal corruption as an argument in his re-election bid (it's his wife that steers contracts towards Kentucky using her cabinet position).
Corruption for the cause is a virtue these days.

the right is A OK with anything Trump does because, and only because, it makes the left mad.

we're ruled by children.

Well this is a novel move which looks promising...

https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/465168-giuliani-associates-who-aided-ukraine-investigation-arrested-on

now arrest Rudy.

it might be interesting to find out who is paying his airfare while he bops around the world conducting under-the-table foreign policy as Trump's unpaid personal lawyer.

(OT) This, to me is extraordinary:

https://slate.com/human-interest/2019/10/bathsheba-david-rape-evangelical-abuse.html
In recent days, a question about this ancient tale has inspired heated online conversations among evangelicals: Did David have an affair with Bathsheba, or did he rape her? The answer has implications for the way the famous story is taught to children and the reputation of a biblical hero. But the debate itself illuminates—and may even change—the ways that evangelical Christians think about gender, sex, power, consent, and abuse....

...In her recent memoir about exposing the sexual abuse of USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar, Denhollander describes how a callous interpretation of the Bathsheba passage contributed to her own initial silence after being abused as a teenager. In her high school Sunday school class, a teacher asked whether Bathsheba bore responsibility for what happened.

Denhollander was silently relieved when a girl in the class responded that Bathsheba couldn’t have said no. “I don’t think that’s right,” a boy replied. “She could have chosen death. This wasn’t abuse.” Denhollander easily grasped his point. “If they see Bathsheba that way, they would see me that way too,” she writes, “better off dead than violated.” ...

I am old enough to have been in school when we still had "Scripture" lessons, so while a non believer, am very familiar with a great deal of the Bible. That interpretation of the David and Bathsheba tale never even occurred to me - I wouldn't have expressed it in quite this way back then, but her lack of agency was quite clear.

And those were far less enlightened times.

I hope posting this here is not transgressing the unwritten law (to quote the great Monty Python sketch about Doug and Dinsdale Piranha), since as everybody knows I am clueless about online laws, but I really think this comment of cleek's on the GOP, at his place, really cannot be bettered:

You’ve come a long way from pretending to be the moral standard bearers of the world, you despicable frauds.

It should be inscribed on monuments, placards, even gravestones when the Grand Old Party is finally decently interred.

What's driving me a little nuts is the whole "What's wrong with making sure Ukraine is investigating corruption before providing aid?" argument. In the scheme of all the corruption in Ukraine, where do the Bidens fit in? Why was that specific bit of alleged-but-debunked corruption the subject of the call?

And even if Joe Biden was abusing the power of his office in pressuring the Ukrainian government to fire the prosecutor (who wasn't sufficiently investigating corruption!), how is that Ukraine's job to address? He was our vice president, not theirs.

Just another domino
https://edition.cnn.com/2019/10/09/media/matt-drudge-trump-impeachment/index.html

if Trump really cared about corruption in Ukraine, he probably wouldn't have picked Paul Manafort, of all people, to run his campaign. that he's asking us to believe he's just doing due diligence before providing aid is insulting.

GftNC : :)

I'm guessing you all know about this by now, FWIW, on the subject of Trump's comments that the Kurds didn't fight with "us" on the Normandy landings, or in WWII: Channel 4 News's excellent International Editor Lindsay Hilsum, reporting from the front lines in Northern Syria in the town of Qamishli, has just said this:

The Kurds fought with the British in Iraq against a pro-Nazi coup during WWII, the Kurds fought on the side of the West.

This, to me is extraordinary

The story (2 Samuel 11 and 12) gives no characterization of Bathsheba's agency with regard to David, at all. David wanted her, he sent for her, she went to David, he slept with her. The "she went to David" part could be thought of as her choice, but he was the king, so likely not so much.

The only thing we know of Bathsheba's thoughts in all of this is that she mourned Uriah (her husband) after he was killed.

David subsequently married her, but her agency in that was also likely minimal.

What "displeased god" about David's actions is laid out by the prophet Nathan - David, who likely had a wife or wives of his own, saw another man's wife and took her. And, had the man killed in the bargain. No account is given of god's pleasure or displeasure with Bathsheba.

David had a man murdered so he could have the man's wife. That displeased god, which speaks well of god.

the right is A OK with anything Trump does because , and only because, it makes the left mad he is delivering what they want...tax cuts for the wealthy, regulation roll-backs, and conservative corporatist judges.

Fixed for you.

The Kurds fought with the British in Iraq against a pro-Nazi coup during WWII, the Kurds fought on the side of the West.

Trump's ignorance of history is on a par with his ignorance of pretty much everything else. Which is to say, if Trump says "X happened" the default assumption must be that X did not, in fact, happen. And vis versa. He just knows nothing; about essentially anything.

the right is A OK with anything Trump does because . . . he is delivering what they want...tax cuts for the wealthy, regulation roll-backs, and conservative corporatist judges.

Actually, I think it was closer to right the first time. Now if you wanted to argue that conservative DONORS are OK with Trump for those reasons, that would be defensible. But for the right generally, those are not really things that the masses on the right care about.

Fixed for you.

they loved him before any of that, and his poll numbers have basically never changed. he's a professional troll.

And of course that's just to address Trump's abysmal ignorance; the fact is that supporting the Kurds (and more to the point, not abandoning them to Turkey's ethnic cleansing - that's what Lindsay Hilsum called it in the area she was covering) is nothing to do with and should be nothing to do with WWII, that was just Trump scoring what he thought was an easy, cheap point, which alas probably worked for his still oh-so-loyal and just as ignorant base.

i'm wondering what got into Trump's head that made him think about countries who helped the allies in WWII and Normandy. it's kind of a weird place to take any discussion of the Kurds, unprompted.

I think it's just a combination of e.g. the impressive Normandy commemorations which he attended, ignorant Churchill worship, "this was their finest hour" (which he probably thinks applies to the US), and how the whole subject affects many gung-ho militaristic rightwingers, so he thinks it will play well with his people. And he's probably not wrong.

Wasn't he actually absent from the Normandy main events because it rained and he feared for his hair-do?

I think that was a separate event during the commemorations, a visit to a graveyard of Americans killed in the first World War...

Yes, he WAS absent the the first World War commemorative main events a couple of years ago for fear his fascist wave-fro would be obliterated in the rain, his hair goo apparently being water soluble.

He was absent for the first real-time Normandy Invasion in 1944 as a pre-born corrupt republican fetal piece of shit, arriving in this world two years later, nevertheless with pre-born bone spurs just in case the noxious devil sperm ejaculated by his corrupt, racist father would have fertilized his whore mother's egg in time to let him be on hand for the combat festivities.

His parents, such as they were (scum, anti-American, murderers, subhuman) also made sure he arrived too late to be transferred after the invasion to Italian front, fearing he would witness the savage slaughter of Mussolini and his ilk, thus providing p with a foretaste of his exact fate in America in the coming months/years at the hands of virulently violent and just American partisan patriots and perhaps giving the twat pause about destroying America and its government in the year of the American cock sucking, money-grubbing God, 2016, to give dumb shit dupes massive tax cuts as payoff bribes to look the other way as he hands America and its government over to corrupt domestic fascist traitors and fascist foreign spies.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_of_Benito_Mussolini#/media/File:Mussolini_e_Petacci_a_Piazzale_Loreto,_1945.jpg

Their hair is mussed, if you'll notice.

There can no other ending to this fucking travesty that can let America move forward with a clean slate and a horizon clear of the dead (that's physically dead, not symbolically) and buried Republican Party.

No fucking deals with any of them. Only their executions. And then it will be time to start in, door-to-door, house-to-house, on the fucking republican base.

p's mouth today shat out the words, "I hope they don't indict Rudy", after his Russian spy confederates were tipped off about their coming arrests, by Guiliani or deep-state vermin, subhuman Justice Department, White House Republicans and nabbed at the airport as they tried to leave the country.

Rudy is toast. And that doesn't even include what we are going to do to him:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBW5AesgXC8&t=59s

i'm wondering what got into Trump's head that made him think about countries who helped the allies in WWII and Normandy. it's kind of a weird place to take any discussion of the Kurds, unprompted.

Not entirely unprompted.

He was apparently referencing a (slightly) less incoherent, and equally morally blind, argument from this article:
https://townhall.com/columnists/kurtschlichter/2019/10/08/critics-aghast-as-trump-keeps-word-about-no-more-wars-n2554328

At least four national security officials were so alarmed by the Trump administration’s attempts to pressure Ukraine for political purposes that they raised concerns with a White House lawyer both before and immediately after President Trump’s July 25 call with that country’s president, according to U.S. officials and other people familiar with the matter.

The nature and timing of the previously undisclosed discussions with National Security Council legal adviser John Eisenberg indicate that officials were delivering warnings through official White House channels earlier than previously understood — including before the call that precipitated a whistleblower complaint and the impeachment inquiry of the president.

...

Officials said that within hours of the 9 a.m. conversation, a rough transcript compiled by aides had been moved from a widely shared White House computer network to one normally reserved for highly classified intelligence operations. According to the whistleblower’s complaint, White House lawyers “directed” officials to move the transcript to the classified system. At the same time, officials were seeking ways to report what they had witnessed, an undertaking complicated by the lack of a White House equivalent to the inspector general positions found at other agencies.

they blew their whistles. and the walls came down.

William Barr and Rupert Murdoch dine together.

http://www.lawyersgunsmoneyblog.com/2019/10/this-looks-totally-legit

The killing can't begin soon enough.

Well I am enjoying the arrest of the two trump cronies that were steering Russian money into his PAC. Not sure how the Rethugs are going to spin that but spin they will since McCarthy and DiSantos were also beneficiaries. I love seeing headlines that say, "Republicans dodge questions" and "Democrats send out subpoenas"

You know what MAGA stands for? Many Are Getting Arrested.

(I saw that on twitter)

You know what MAGA stands for? Many Are Getting Arrested.

(I saw that on twitter)

Yeah, What would we do without twitter?

Could this be the beginning of the collapse?

http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/10/trumps-evangelical-allies-are-upset-about-his-syria-policy.html

"...the president of the United States is in danger of losing the mandate of heaven if he permits this to happen..."

They will pull the plug on Cyrus and put Pence in place to preserve their miracle. Anything but have to contemplate the notion that they had been grifted yet again by a bunko artist with a juiced up testimony about his conversion.

How much more ugly will this get?

"Trump also mocked Omar, the first Somali-American in Congress. “How hell did that ever happen?” he said of her election, adding: “Congresswoman Omar is an America-hating socialist.”

While Trump talked about Omar, images of her in a headscarf flashed on the arena’s screens."

it can still get a little uglier ...

https://youtu.be/XeDrx7Jxk1g?t=163

not much, tho

Warren has at least one quality Hillary lacked - the gift of comic timing:

https://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/465357-warren-mocks-gay-marriage-opponents-just-marry-one-woman
...In an exchange with an official with the Human Rights Coalition over what she would say to someone who told her they believed marriage should be defined as between a man and a woman, Warren responded with a joke that quickly took fire on Twitter.

"Let's say you're on the campaign trail...and a supporter approaches you and says, 'Senator, I'm old fashioned, and my faith teaches me that marriage is between one man and one woman,' what is your response?" Morgan Cox, chair of HRC's board of directors, asked Warren.

"Well, I'm going to assume it's a guy who said that," Warren began, to laughter. "And I'm gonna say, 'then just marry one woman. I'm cool with that."

After waiting for initial applause to die down, Warren interjected again: "Assuming you can find one."

Kremlin-directed operatives opened champagne when Donald Trump won the presidency in 2016, according to a communication disclosed in a new Senate Intelligence Committee report outlining Russia’s sweeping social media efforts to help him win.

“We uncorked a tiny bottle of champagne ... took one gulp each and looked into each other’s eyes .... We uttered almost in unison: ‘We made America great,’” one operative at the St. Petersburg-based Internet Research Agency said in the message obtained by the Republican-led committee.

the GOP needs to be flung into the sea

holy crap...

the "Normandy" stuff came from a Town Hall article the Trump read.

Town. Hall.

this is the kind of crap the President reads for inspiration.

thanks, GOP! DIAF ASAP.

I hadn't noticed Ed Meese got the Medal of Freedom (sic):

https://www.newyorker.com/news/our-columnists/what-ed-meeses-presidential-medal-of-freedom-says-about-the-gop-and-impeachment

Ed fncking Meese.

Next up John Yoo ?

Obviously the next contender is Barr. The medal for Meese may be intended to spur him on.
The top of irony would of course be to hand over the medal together with a pardon.

Next up John Yoo [for the Medal of Freedom]?

Nigel, sometimes you just have no sense of the appropriate. Obviously they are going to nominate Yoo for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Shep Smith resigns from Fox News. two days after our Attorney General met with Rupert Murdoch, at Murdoch's house.

yay

True, Barr is the obvious choice for a presidential freedom award, given his strenuous efforts to keep the current incumbent out of jail...

John Yoo thinks Pelosi should 'fair' to Trump.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/nancy-pelosi-doesnt-have-to-make-impeachment-fair-but-it-still-should-be/2019/10/13/b09ce182-ec44-11e9-85c0-85a098e47b37_story.html

Doesn't say if it involves crushing his testicles.

Though it grates to say it, he has perhaps half of a point.

Though experience demonstrates with 100% certainty that Trump's definition of "fair", unlike that understood by the rest of us, means nothing beyond letting him win.

I think it might be time to deploy the "if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear" line....

... he has perhaps half of a point

And, I forgot to add, setting aside the fact that he ought to be opining from the security of a prison cell.

Yoo writes:

Despite these hardball tactics, Pelosi has the Constitution on her side.

QED

we're long past the point where tradition and custom matter much.

Yoo writes:

Despite these hardball tactics, Pelosi has the Constitution on her side.

Thus demonstrating that, appalling as he is, Yoo is still a substantially more competent lawyer than the scum around Trump at the moment.

Custom and tradition are now only worthwhile to the extent that they constrain Democrats.

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