Donald Trump is finally getting used to the idea that he is actually being impeached. He was in denial over it for a long time, but in just the past week or so, what he’s seen on television has apparently pierced his bubble and he knows that this is real. He tried to blow past it, like he did the Mueller report, but for whatever reason, this impeachment business seems to be sticking. First order of business, assert his innocence and purity and second order? Adopt for himself the same playbook he recommended to Bill Clinton, when it was his time in the barrel. Politico: “Everybody knows I did nothing wrong,” he told the Washington Examiner in a recent interview. “Bill Clinton did things wrong; Richard Nixon did things wrong. I won’t go back to [Andrew] Johnson because that was a little before my time,” he said. “But they did things wrong. I did nothing wrong.” As Trump told the New York Times in September, 1998 Bill Clinton was playing it all wrong by admitting fault and apologizing. That is not the way. At least it’s not Trump’s way. “Mr. Clinton’s latest attempts to grovel and continuously apologize to anyone willing to listen are demeaning both to himself and his country,” he wrote. “How many times does he have to say ‘I’m sorry’?” Trump had a better game plan for Clinton: go on the attack. “I’m not even sure that he shouldn’t have just gone in and taken the Fifth Amendment and said, ‘Look, I don’t get along with this man Starr. He’s after me. He’s a Republican. He’s this, he’s that,’ and, you know, just taken the Fifth Amendment,” he told Lauer. “It’s a terrible thing for a president to take the Fifth Amendment, but he probably should have done it.” Trump already knew how to define his enemies with vicious descriptions, calling Starr a “total wacko” in a Geraldo Rivera interview in November 1999. “There’s the guy. I mean, he is totally off his rocker,” he said, sympathizing with Hillary Clinton, who he called “a very, very good person.” He saved his harshest verbiage for Clinton’s accusers. “It’s like from hell, it’s a terrible group of people,” Trump told Neil Cavuto on Fox News in August 1998. “The whole group, Paula Jones, [Monica] Lewinsky, it’s just a really unattractive group. I’m not just talking about physical,” he said. When Cavuto asked if Trump’s opinion would change if any of the women were “supermodel”-level attractive, Trump responded: “I think at least it would be more pleasant to watch.” […] Cumulatively, all of Clinton’s errors — borne, Trump believed, out of his impulse to be “too much of a nice guy” — had placed him in an “embarrassing, compromising position,” he told Matthews on Hardball. Interestingly, Trump wouldn’t have impeached Clinton for lying, but he would have impeached Bush. “Look at the trouble Bill Clinton got into with something that was totally unimportant. And they tried to impeach him, which was nonsense,” he said. “And yet Bush got us into this horrible war with lies, by lying, by saying they had weapons of mass destruction, by saying all sorts of things that turned out not to be true.” Bill Clinton chose to ignore following the Donald Trump playbook, for reasons known only to himself, but lucky us, […]
At the time that the concentration camps were established at the border, reference was made to the world’s most famous refugee family, Jesus, Mary and Joseph. Therefore, it’s not surprising that somebody took up that concept and formulated it into a nativity scene, as depicted above. Here’s the Facebook post that accompanied it. Stirred to tears by the Claremont UMC nativity. Inside the church, the Holy Family is reunited. The theological statement posted with the nativity: In a time in our country when refugee families seek asylum at our borders and are unwillingly separated from one another, we consider the most well-known refugee family in the world. Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, the Holy Family. Shortly after the birth of Jesus, Joseph and Mary were forced to flee with their young son from Nazareth to Egypt to escape King Herod, a tyrant. They feared persecution and death. What if this family sought refuge in our country today? Imagine Joseph and Mary separated at the border and Jesus no older than two taken from his mother and placed behind the fences of a Border Patrol detention center as more than 5,500 children have been the past three years. Jesus grew up to teach us kindness and mercy and a radical welcome of all people. He said: “I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me.” Matthew 25:35 In the Claremont United Methodist Church nativity scene this Christmas, the Holy Family takes the place of the thousands of nameless families separated at our borders. Inside the church, you will see this same family reunited, the Holy Family together, in a nativity that joins the angels in singing “Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace and good will to all.” Luke 2:14 And of course the backlash is unsurprising as well. Here’s a sampling. Ken Are Are you kidding me? Mary and Joseph were following the mandates of their national leader, and not doing illegalities making this a disingenuously stupid portrait. This is an Obama legacy; according to our laws you can’t take children into a prison; don’t do illegal shit, and you won’t be separated. This Trumpite apparently believes that seeking asylum is not a human right. Certainly that’s a topic which is debatable. I think one thing we can say is certain, the abuses at the border detention camps are crimes against humanity. You may recall a report published this week on a 16-year-old boy who contracted the flu, which then turned into pneumonia, and his captors just left him to die on the floor of his cell, without getting him medical attention. I think it’s undisputed in that instance, that the punishment didn’t fit the crime. Whatever the young man, or his parents did in crossing the border, to let him die an agonizing death on the floor of a concrete cell, is unjustifiable. Nevertheless, there are those who do justify it. We not only live in strange times, but in incredibly sad ones as well.
Private citizen Rudy Giuliani will be requesting an audience before Congress in the not too distant future, according to the man he serves as personal attorney, on a pro bono basis, Donald Trump. “… he did get back from Europe just recently and I know — he has not told me what he found, but I think he wants to go before Congress and say, and also to the attorney general and the Department of Justice, and I hear he found plenty.” Here’s what Giuliani tweeted two days ago. …to the US assisting Ukraine with its anti-corruption reforms. The American people will learn that Biden & other Obama administration officials, contributed to the increased level of corruption in Ukraine between 2014 to 2016. This evidence will all be released very soon. — Rudy Giuliani (@RudyGiuliani) December 5, 2019 Rudy and his henchmen, Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman, were engaged in a shadow foreign policy scheme in Ukraine, and managed to topple Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch, but expect that to be whitewashed entirely with finger pointing and more unsubstantiated allegations about Joe Biden and his son Hunter. Both-siderism and bullshit are Trump’s key weapons, a default position that he has to take, since his “defense” to impeachment — and everything — lacks any substance, let alone the depth he’s alleging Rudy will provide. But the pretense of both will be pretended and presented by Giuliani and by Trump’s newest right-wing media ally, OAN network. If you doubt for a moment Trump’s commitment to this delusion, take a look at what he tweeted about being “the greatest of all presidents.” “Not only have the Democrats not advanced key pieces of legislation that would help the economy, but the polls, especially in early states, are showing that voters are tuning out.” @PeteHegseth They don’t want our greatest of all presidents impeached! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 7, 2019 This is what 73 years of self-obsession and consequence-free bubble living, while eating junk food, spraying strands of hair over a bald pate with glue, and watching Fox TV gets you. Word to the wise. As to Giuliani, this may be his last stand. He’s been banned from Fox News and purportedly Jarvanka is out to get him. Either one of those circumstances is bad for a Trumpite, the two in concert are certain death. Rudy may need to grab some coffee filters and head out for his new career in obscurity. The next few weeks will be interesting, that much is certain.
Yesterday I wrote about the sitting Republican president’s curious rant on rainfall, faucets and recalcitrant toilets, who simply will not cooperate until you flush them “ten or fifteen times” and I characterized those musings as absurd even for Trump. Little did I know that the very next day would bring this jewel, however. Donald Trump has gone on record stating that “there are laws that allow birth in the ninth month of pregnancy.” Yes, there are. I believe those laws were put into effect by God, Mother Nature, or genetics, whichever phrase suits your worldview. Trump, however, has called for these laws, immutable, so far as we know, to be abrogated. Hoe kay. Statement from The President: "Right now in a number of states the laws allow a baby to be born from his or her mother's womb in the 9th month. It is wrong. It has to change." Watch. pic.twitter.com/v5dx94Httn — Noga Tarnopolsky (@NTarnopolsky) December 7, 2019 I will take a leap of faith here and assume that Trump doesn’t know the difference between childbirth and abortion. Or, maybe it’s more prudent to be cynical and judge this whack-a-mole comment as the logical extension of the GOP’s paternalistic dictatorship over women’s reproductive organs. With Trump’s call to ban childbirth in the ninth month of gestation, everything women do would be illegal — preventing pregnancy, terminating pregnancy, going through with pregnancy. If giving birth in the ninth month is going to be deemed illegal, man, are we going to have a prison crowding problem then. However you call this shot, though, this is weird. Trump is really coming unglued. How many of these incomprehensible, clear-as-mud, ramblings do we need to see, back to back, before the 25th Amendment is deemed warranted?
Donald Trump is not having a good day. He tweeted earlier about some statutory right he has to send troops across the Mexican border to get rid of cartels, but said that he wouldn’t do that just yet, (we imagine the Mexicans are relieved) then he demanded that CNN retract it’s story about him making calls from an unsecured personal cell phone. But the zenith of the day was reached when he started talking about light bulbs and toilets. This is a peek into Donald Trump’s mental landscape, and it makes Salvadore Dali’s paintings look mundane by comparison. RawStory: The light bulb — they got rid of the light bulb that people got used to. The new bulb is many times more expensive and — I hate to say it — it doesn’t make you look as good. Of course, being a vain person, that’s very important to me. It’s like — it gives you an orange look. I don’t want an orange look. Has anyone noticed that? So we’ll have to change those bulbs in at least a couple rooms where I am in the White House. … We have a situation where we’re looking very strongly at sinks and showers. And other elements of bathrooms — where you turn the faucet on, in areas where there’s tremendous amounts of water, where the water rushes out to sea because you could never handle it — and you don’t get any water. You turn on the faucet and you don’t get any water. They take a shower and water comes dripping out, just dripping out, very quietly, dripping out. People are flushing toilets 10 times, 15 times, as opposed to once. They end up using more water. So EPA is looking at that very strongly, at my suggestion. You go into a new building, or a new house or a new home, and they have standards where you don’t get water. You can’t wash your hands practically, so little water comes out of the faucet. And the end result is you leave the faucet on and it takes you much longer to wash your hands. .. For the most part. you have many states where they have so much water, it comes down — it’s called rain. They don’t know what to do with it. … A lot of things we do are based on common sense. If I didn’t get elected you wouldn’t have a steel industry. … We weren’t going to have a steel industry. A reporter explained that Trump was attempting to discourse on low-flush toilets. How that came out of a comment on light bulbs and then devolved into a diatribe on hand washing, rain, and the steel industry is probably more appropriately the purview of the psychiatric community rather then the press. My take on the hand washing, toilet flushing manic comments was that Trump is like Lady Macbeth. Remember, how she would ring her hands and cry, “Out out damn spot,” and declaim, “Who knew that the old man had so much blood in him?” That was an expression of her guilt and paranoia. Likewise, germaphobe Trump knows that he’s dirty and he can’t cope with his need to get clean or make all the shit go away, so he rants about how the faucets don’t work […]
White House counsel Pat Cipollone stated Friday that the White House would not cooperate with the House impeachment inquiry and admonished the Democrats to cease and desist, in a letter to Jerrold Nadler. Cipollone called the inquiry “baseless” “a charade” and admonished Nadler “not to waste even more time with additional hearings.” In issuing the letter today, the White House is holding fast to it’s stance that impeachment is a “hoax” and it’s decision to stonewall until the matter gets to the Senate, at which point Mitch McConnell is expected to raise and lower the gavel and that will be that. Be that as it may, don’t lose sight of the good that the impeachment inquiry has done and how it does in fact constitute a galvanizing force in American politics, which will be of great importance in the upcoming election — and this despite the fact that polls are showing little to no movement of the anti-Trump needle since the hearings began. The New Yorker: If Trump is to be defeated next year, his opponents will have to maintain that [level of] energy [from 2018] and build upon it. To do so, Ezra Levin, the co-founder and co-executive director of the Indivisible movement, which now has more than five thousand affiliated local groups, insists, it was utterly necessary for the Democrats to react to the shocking Ukraine revelations by issuing the ultimate congressional rebuke to Trump. Speaking hours after Speaker Nancy Pelosi confirmed that the House Democrats would go ahead and file articles of impeachment, Levin said, “I see only positive sides to this. I see a system that is working. For all the millions of people who got involved with politics after 2016, it shows that all the hard work they did mattered. That is going to get them involved again in 2020.” From this perspective, the key thing isn’t whether the Senate actually removes Trump from office. Levin, who is also the co-author of a new book, “We Are Indivisible: A Blueprint for Democracy After Trump,” said that he wasn’t making any predictions about the outcome. But he added, “It was vital to demonstrate that elections do have consequences and that the Democrats will use their power to stand up to Trump.” If Pelosi and her colleagues had refused to launch an impeachment process, Levin went on, “it would have been enormously demoralizing for all these people who were newly engaged after 2016.” […] To that point, Levin noted, participating in an impeachment trial may well create problems for a number of Republicans who are up for reëlection in purple and red states where Trump’s disapproval ratings are underwater. Pointing to Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Iowa, Maine, Montana, and North Carolina as examples, Levin said, “These are all places where you are going to have a Republican senator forced to take a hard vote. It will be very helpful to Democrats that Senator Gardner, in Colorado, or Senator Ernst, in Iowa, or Senator McSally, in Arizona, cannot just hide behind nicely written tweets. They are actually going to have to register a historic vote and stand by it.” An old teacher of mine said, “You can never go too far wrong by doing the right thing.” In this instance of fighting back against the corruption of Donald Trump and […]
Rudy Giuliani is in Kyiv, as we speak, for the purpose of meeting with people who allegedly have information on Burisma and Hunter Biden, for the purpose of smearing Joe Biden’s presidential campaign. Such overt subterfuge is part and parcel of the new normal in American politics since our fall down the Trump rabbit hole in 2016. To that end, a former Ukrainian member of parliament, Oleksandr Onyshchenko, who fled Ukraine after being accused of embezzlement, and who claims all kinds of insider information about Burisma and the Bidens, was arrested in Germany Friday — which is sure to put a crimp in his appearing in Rudy Giuliani’s OAN documentary. Onyshchenko is quite the piece of work. He’s anti-Obama and and George Soros, and pro Yuriy Lutsenko and Vicktor Shokin, both of whom are known to have worked with Giuliani on his Burisma conspiracy theory. He also has accused the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv of working against Trump in the 2016 election, and claims that Paul Manafort was framed. Perfect candidate for a starring role in a Giuliani smear campaign, so sad that he’s in the House of Many Doors and unavailable. Better luck next time, Rudy. Daily Beast: Onyshchenko’s arrest comes as efforts by Trump’s American allies to find information about Burisma Group—where former Vice President Joe Biden’s son was once a board member—have reached a fever pitch. Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s personal attorney, is currently in Kyiv, Ukraine, holding meetings on the subject. Efforts by Giuliani and other Trump administration officials to win political goodies from Ukrainian government officials—including an announcement of an investigation into Burisma—are a central focus of Democrats’ impeachment investigation of President Donald Trump. Democrats’ next impeachment hearing is scheduled for Dec. 9. German authorities arrested Onyshchenko based on a request from Ukraine’s National Anti-Corruption Bureau and Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office (SAPO). According to a report from the UNIAN news agency, Ukrainian officials are awaiting a ruling from a German court on whether or not to extradite Onyshchenko. After fleeing Ukraine in 2016, Onyshchenko claimed to have evidence of widespread corruption by then-Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, and he said he’d contacted the FBI with his claims. Two sources familiar with the events confirmed that he did meet with U.S. law enforcement officials in 2016 in an effort to build goodwill. The sources said Onyshchenko appeared to want to share information in hopes of obtaining a visa to travel to the U.S. The U.S. Justice Department confirmed meeting with him at the time but said it had “no plans to have further meetings or communications” with him after that, according to RFE/RL. His allegations were widely seen in Ukraine as part of a Kremlin-orchestrated disinformation campaign meant to undermine the Ukrainian government as it sought to strengthen ties with the West. As the impeachment proceedings against President Trump took hold in October, Onyshchenko claimed to have inside information about Hunter Biden and his work for Burisma. He told Reuters that his friend Mykola Zlochevsky, who founded Burisma, had placed the vice president’s son on Burisma’s board as insurance against criminal investigations. The claim echoes those made by Rudy Giuliani and former Ukrainian Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko. “It was to protect (the company),” he said. This guy is exactly the sort of grifting con man that you would expect to be spouting this insanity. Onyschchenko is accused of […]
Mark December 7 on your calendar. It’s not only a day that will live in infamy, but one that will resound in the annals of absurdity as well, once Rudy Giuliani leaves his inimitable mark on it. Giuliani has been bounced from Fox News, at least until further notice, so he’s beginning a two-part series on Fox’s rival network, OAN, this weekend, entitled, “REVEALED: UKRAINIAN WITNESSES DESTROY SCHIFF’S CASE EXCLUSIVE WITH RUDY GIULIANI: PARTS 1 AND 2,” wherein he’ll share the fruits of his labors in Hungary and Ukraine this week. The series is hosted by OAN White House correspondent, Chanel Rion, best known for proselytizing conspiracy theories about Seth Rich and Pizzagate, when she isn’t busy penning anti-feminist children’s books or drawing anti-left political cartoons, amongst other swamp-fevered fantasies. Daily Beast: In October, Rion claimed that former FBI lawyer Lisa Page had an affair with former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe. Rion’s vaguely sourced report went viral in corners of the right-wing blogosphere that has become obsessed with Page’s sex life and her connection to the investigation into the Trump campaign and Russia. But Rion’s network quietly retracted the entire story later that month. […] Before joining OAN in May, Rion developed some level of notoriety on the internet for her bizarre political cartoons, in a self-published set of online cartoons dubbed “The Left Edge.” In one, Rion promoted the conspiracy theory that Clinton was behind the unsolved murder of DNC staffer Rich, which police have concluded was a botched robbery. In another, she referenced “spirit cooking”—the baseless claim, popular with believers in the Pizzagate conspiracy theory, that top Democratic officials are involved in Satanic cannibalistic sacrifices. You know, this is one way of dealing with the Republicans. We could just bake ’em in a pie and eat ’em. Or, maybe we could do a fast food version of our cannibalistic cuisine. How about a Big Mitch burger, or some nice Dunkin Devins, with a coffee? Look, eating them has got to be better than listening to them, right? Now here’s my personal favorite from Rion’s album of Democratic delusions: Harry Reid is a visitor from beyond the stars, Planet Zoombo, to be precise. Dammit, how did she find out my home base? The Imperial Nawab is going to be very distressed when she hears about this. Not all of Rion’s cartoons promote conspiracy theories, but many of them are still strange. In one, former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), dressed as an alien, comes to Earth to criticize then-FBI Director James Comey. Reid is depicted as arriving in a UFO inexplicably labeled “Planet Zoombo.” In another, she called on “armed citizens to defend America from violent left,” claiming without evidence that Democrats were plotting assassinations. In one cartoon, Rion portrays the Academy Awards’ Oscar statue as a woman named “Oscareena.” “He claims his name is Oscareena and he wants the keys to the little girls’ peek-a-boo room,” one character in the cartoon says. This is a White House correspondent, okay? This is the level of intellect and ability that holds that title, in an era when the likes of Alex Jones was given press credentials to attend White House press briefings (back when we did such things) while Jim Acosta had his revoked, after a number of years on the job. OAN has credibility in this White House, […]
The Biden campaign didn’t miss a beat getting this one out and up on the board. The world is laughing at President Trump. They see him for what he really is: dangerously incompetent and incapable of world leadership. We cannot give him four more years as commander in chief. pic.twitter.com/IR8K2k54YQ — Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) December 5, 2019 This should hit Trump where he lives. He can’t stand being laughed at and it’s impossible to deny that these two events took place, the one at the United Nations and the one at the NATO summit. It will be interesting to see what Trump puts up as a counter-attack ad — Hunter Biden counting money on the beach, something like that? It’s going to be an ugly campaign, making 2016 look civil by comparison, but this is the level Trump has dragged us down to and we have to fight fire with fire. I think this is a good beginning. I admit to some trepidation recently when Joe Biden got his “no malarkey” bus rolling, but this, on the other hand, is a very smooth move. This is what we need more of.
Donald Trump wants you to know that he’s not impressed with those shoe-smuggling, maple syrup swigging, deadbeat Canucks, nor their leader Justin Trudeau — nor, for that matter Emmanuel Macron. Trump considers them “wise guys” and so the two world leaders dissing him in front of Boris Johnson Tuesday night at the NATO Summit did not go down well a tall a tall. Trump let Trudeau know it. New York Times: “Well, he’s two-faced,” the president said when asked about the video. After a long pause, he added, “He’s a nice guy. I find him to be a very nice guy.” Mr. Trump, who was taking questions from reporters ahead of a meeting with Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, attributed Mr. Trudeau’s frustration to the American leader’s pressure campaign to increase Canada’s military spending to 2 percent of its economic output. “He should be paying more than he’s paying,” Mr. Trump said. “I called him out on that, and I’m sure he wasn’t happy about it, but that’s the way it is.” And that’s just what Trump says about Trudeau this year. Last year was pretty bad, as well. Last year, Mr. Trump derided the Canadian leader as “very dishonest and weak” after Mr. Trudeau pledged at a Group of 7 summit in Quebec City that he would retaliate against United States tariffs on steel and aluminum products. Mr. Trump wrote on Twitter at the time that Mr. Trudeau had acted “so meek and mild” when they met face to face. Trump can’t laugh at himself, because to do so takes humility, and he has none. He’s just an overblown ego encased in an obese flesh suit. That said, he does not like it when others laugh at him. Mr. Trump has long bridled at the idea of other world leaders poking fun at the United States, and part of his 2016 presidential campaign pitch to voters was that his election would change how America was viewed abroad. “The world is laughing at us,” he said frequently during the campaign, criticizing the leadership of President Barack Obama. In June 2017, when he announced that the United States would withdraw from the Paris climate agreement, Mr. Trump said: “We don’t want other leaders and other countries laughing at us anymore. And they won’t be. They won’t be.” In 2018, laughter broke out at the United Nations General Assembly when Mr. Trump claimed that his administration had “accomplished more than almost any administration in the history of our country.” The president insisted at the time that he was not the target, saying, “They weren’t laughing at me, they were laughing with me.” No, they were laughing at you, and your preposterous preening and your reality TV spin on what a world leader looks and sounds like — which is a complete joke. The truly tragic part about Trump’s reign as POTUS is that absolutely everybody on all seven continents of the world is in on the joke, except for him.