We hardly got to know yous. Fun while it lasted … all 11 days!
Photo | rollingstone.com
We hardly got to know yous. Fun while it lasted … all 11 days!
Photo | rollingstone.com
To the chagrin of many Republicans, John McCain is a maverick after all. Many people doubted his mavericky ways after he voted with his fellow Republicans only three days ago to keep the Republican Obamacare repeal efforts alive.
Asked why he voted against the one piece of legislation that has formed the Republicans’ signature message since Obamacare was enacted seven years ago, McCain said, because “it was the right thing to do.” The bill was defeated 49-51.
After McCain stood with his party on Tuesday, casting the crucial vote to move ahead with debate on the bill that would kill Obamacare, both Republicans and Democrats couldn’t be certain what the 80 year-old Arizona senator would do when it came time to vote on a bill.
True to his unpredictable nature, McCain told his fellow senators after his Tuesday vote, “I voted for the motion to proceed to allow debate to continue. I will not vote for this bill as it is today. It’s a shell of a bill right now.”
Of course McCain’s dramatic vote would not have been possible but for the heroic votes of two female senators, Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska).
But should we really be surprised McCain did the honorable thing?
During his 2008 presidential campaign against Barack Obama, a woman at a town hall meeting in Minnesota told McCain she was afraid of Obama because she had read he was an Arab. Without any hesitation, McCain set the woman straight.
“No, ma’am. He’s a decent family man [and] citizen that I just happen to have disagreements with on fundamental issues and that’s what this campaign’s all about. He’s not [an Arab],” McCain told the supporter. “I have to tell you. Sen. Obama is a decent person and a person you don’t have to be scared of as president of the United States.”
The crowd roundly booed McCain.
“Come on, John!” one audience member yelled out. Others added “liar,” and “terrorist,” referring to Obama.
Some pundits think McCain’s act of decency may have cost him the election.
After today’s crushing defeat, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell all but threw in the towel on trying to whack Obama’s signature piece of legislation. “It is time to move on,” he said.
Referring to his Democratic opponents who voted in lockstep against the bill, McConnell added, “I regret to say that they succeeded in that effort, so now I think it’s appropriate to ask, ‘What are their ideas?’ It will be interesting to see what they suggest as the way forward”.
Nice words by the Majority Leader but don’t hold your breath on any bipartisan efforts to fix our ailing healthcare system anytime soon.
Photo | Breitbart.com
Donald Trump is the first University of Pennsylvania graduate to ever be elected President of the United States. Normally that would be a feather in the cap of one’s alma mater. Instead, the school’s Board of Trustees has unanimously voted to rescind Trump’s sheepskin.
“Today marks a very sad day for our beloved university,” said a spokesperson for the famed Ivy League school. “We are embarrassed to admit Donald Trump is an alumnus of our great institution. We are chagrined and saddened to call him one of our own. The president is a black mark on our long and illustrious history. He has cheapened the value of every diploma ever awarded by the University of Pennsylvania.”
The spokesperson, choosing to remain anonymous, stated that admissions applications have suffered a major decline since Trump entered the presidential race in 2015. Alumni fundraising has also suffered a setback.
Some UPenn graduates are questioning whether Trump received a degree at all. “How could a man with the vocabulary of a seven-year-old have managed to meet the school’s strict academic requirements?” they ask. Some have speculated it was only through the efforts of his wealthy father, Fred Trump, that Donald “earned” his degree.
It has been confirmed through interviews with a number of Trump’s Class of ’68 classmates that he was close to flunking out his junior year. One classmate recalls it was only through the efforts of a very concerned and caring dean that Trump made it to graduation.
“I can remember very vividly,” said the close classmate who also chose to remain anonymous, “the great advice our dean gave Donald, who was known for being a party guy: ‘Fat, drunk and stupid is no way to go through life, son’. That really hit home with him.”
There is serious doubt whether a school can ask for the return of its diploma or rescind a degree. Perhaps this is all a public relations maneuver to show the world Donald Trump is an anomaly and does not represent the many learned and distinguished graduates of one of the nation’s finest universities.
It should be noted that three of Donald Trump’s children also hold a University of Pennsylvania degree: Don Jr. Ivanka and Tiffany. As of this date, the university has not asked for the return of their diplomas. Donald Trump’s third child, Eric, decided to eschew the family tradition and forge his own path. He is a graduate of Georgetown University. Asked for comment, GU declined.
Photo | boston globe.com
Caution – this could be fake news!
Yesterday, the Trump administration announced its new communications director, Anthony Scaramucci. Yes, the same guy who called Donald Trump a “hack politician” whose rhetoric was “anti-American” on Trump’s very own favorite TV network, Fox.
But that was so long ago one has to cut the politically “inexperienced” Scaramucci some slack. After all, he said all those bad things way back in August 2015, for Pete’s sake!
Of course the former Goldman Sachs banker has since seen the errors of ways and has developed a strong affection for his new boss.
“I love the president and the president is a very, very effective communicator,” Scaramucci said yesterday. And boy does Trump love to be loved!
But besides the love, and the requisite loyalty, Trump expects from all his hires, Scaramucci had that one unmistakable quality the president looks for most in becoming part of his team … inexperience.
The 53-year-old businessman, from a working-class Italian family on Long Island, has no experience in government let alone professional communications. Estimated to be worth in the neighborhood of $1.5 billion, about the only political experience the dapper “Mooch” has is that of a donor.
Scaramucci follows in a long line of Trump hires or appointees without any tangible experience for the positions they were hired.
Names such as Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, HUD Secretary Ben Carson, Energy Secretary Rick Perry and Senior Advisor Jared Kushner immediately come to mind.
Yet one can almost understand Trump’s thinking.
He got elected to the highest political office in the land with zero experience for that position so why not give his supporters what they crave most through his hires … incompetence?
Republicans since Reagan have wanted to cripple our big bad federal government. With Trump and his crew of numbskulls, it seems they have finally gotten their wish.
Photo | theaustralian.com.au
It wasn’t that long ago the idea of Russia being our “number one” geopolitical foe was laughable. Literally.
In a 2012 presidential debate, GOP candidate Mitt Romney was roundly derided for saying Russia presented the “greatest geopolitical threat” to the country. To almost everyone watching the televised match, it appeared Romney had committed a major faux pas and had served up a big old softball for President Obama to hit out of the park.
And Obama did.
Reminding Romney of the threat presented to our country by Al Qaeda, Obama quipped, “The 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back because you know, the Cold War has been over for 20 years.”
The Democratic Party tweeted from their official account, “Romney, who calls Russia our ‘No. 1 geopolitical foe,’ doesn’t seem to realize it’s the 21st century. #RomneyNotReady.”
Boy how Obama and the Democrats are singing a different tune today!
With zero doubt from our intelligence agencies that Putin and his band of hackers meddled in our 2016 presidential election, perhaps enough to have handed the presidency to Donald Trump, Romney’s assessment was beyond spot-on.
A foreign adversary, Russia, launched a stealth attack against the heart of our democracy – its electoral integrity – by helping the candidate of their choice, Donald Trump, through sophisticated cyber warfare.
But as bad as this is, it doesn’t appear the party that benefited from such interference is all that concerned about it. The GOP has not only become the party of Trump, but the party of Putin.
Things have gotten so bad, so out of whack, that Republicans have been either silent or in agreement with Trump’s defense of obvious collusion between his son Don Jr. and Russian nationals: “Most politicians would have gone to a meeting like the one Don Jr. attended in order to get info on an opponent. That’s politics!”
Ronald Reagan must be rolling over in his grave wondering how his beloved GOP became sympathizers of what he often dubbed the “Evil Empire.”
What Romney understood at the time, and even a smart politician such as Obama did not, is that the Cold War never really ended … not with Russia being ruled by the former KGB spymaster, Vladimir Putin.
Photo | newsbusters.org
Much has been written about the Republican Party’s Faustian bargain. In exchange for supporting the most unqualified president to ever occupy the White House, it would finally get its radical, conservative agenda enacted into law. By tolerating Trump’s racism, ignoring his corruption and defending his erratic behavior, the GOP’s legislative dreams (repealing Obamacare, shredding the safety net, more tax cuts for the wealthy, etc.) would become reality.
It’s a great storyline but Republicans sold their souls to the devil years before Donald Trump ever came along.
No, they did not make a deal with Satan, Lucifer, the Antichrist or the Prince of Darkness. They struck their bargain with the embodiment of pure evil itself … Mitch McConnell.
After the October 2008 presidential election, before Barack Obama even set one foot inside the Oval Office, Mitch McConnell is reported to have rallied his fellow conservatives to resist the new president at every turn … even on legislation they were in favor of.
According to Michael Grunwald’s book, “The New New Deal,” the then Senate Minority Leader demanded, “unified resistance” from his foot soldiers.
Nevermind the nation was teetering on a fiscal cliff at the time. Nevermind the global economic system was hanging in the balance. Mitch McConnell told his party faithful to put party over country and all would be fine. Sure enough, Republican obstructionism during the first two years of Obama’s presidency paid off. It led to the devastating 2010 mid-term election “shellacking” of the Democrats.
Republicans picked up 60 House seats and 6 Senate seats. Said Larry Sabato Jr., Director of the University of Virginia’s Center for Politics, of Obama’s legislative agenda, “He couldn’t get a Mother’s Day resolution passed in the House at this point. The G.O.P margin is just too large and there are so many strong opponents.”
If you recall, just prior to the 2010 Democratic debacle that swept Republicans into power, McConnell actually spilled the beans by announcing to the world “my number one priority is making sure president Obama’s a one-term president.” The country be damned.
This is the same man who later would stonewall President Obama’s nominee to fill the Supreme Court seat made vacant by Antonin Scalia’s sudden death … an unprecedented move in American history.
Yes, Republicans sold their souls to the devil to reach where they are today … in full control of both branches of Congress and the presidency. All thanks to the deal they made in 2008 with the devil incarnate himself, Mitch McConnell.
Photo | GQ.com
Two days ago, Donald Trump Jr. “voluntarily” tweeted out a bunch of incriminating emails that many are calling the “smoking gun” in the Trump-Russia election scandal. The president remarkably referred to this seeming self-immolation as “transparency” on his son’s part. The truth is the New York Times was just about to publish the emails so Junior wisely chose to get ahead of the story.
The real mystery in all this is how did the New York Times get its hands on the explosive emails? In other words, who leaked them?
The Times stated it leaned on five unnamed sources confirming the existence of the emails. At least two of those came from inside the White House.
So who dunnit?
There were only four principals involved in the email loop: Trump Jr., Jared Kushner, Paul Manafort and Rob Goldstone. If it’s one of them, Jared Kushner is the most likely choice. Trump’s son-in-law has come under a lot of fire the past few months and by leaking the emails, he could point the finger at Junior as the mastermind who arranged the whole thing. You know, “I didn’t know what the meeting was about ahead of time; only there a few minutes,” etc.
Names such as Mike Pence, Cory Lewandowski and Steve Bannon have been thrown around as possible leakers. But how would they have gotten their hands on the emails?
The most likely scenario involves Vladimir Putin and his band of hackers.
If you believe those emails, in plain and highly incriminating language, were sent from Goldstone to Trump Jr. without the knowledge and consent of Putin himself, I have a bridge I’d like to sell you.
Putin most likely tried to use the emails as leverage against Trump in his attempt to have sanctions lifted against his country. When Putin did not get what he wanted from Trump at the G20 meeting, the emails found there way to the New York Times. Just look at the timing. Less than one week after Trump and Putin met in Hamburg. Hmm?
Realizing the political atmosphere will never allow for Trump to get the harsh U.S. sanctions lifted against his regime, why wouldn’t Putin just throw the nation he fears most into political chaos?
What Vladimir giveth Trump (the election), Vladimir can easily taketh away.
Photos via Republic of Korea/Flickr Gage Skidmore/Flickr (CC-BY-SA) Remix by Jason Reed
How far we have come! In only a few short years, we have reached a point where a majority of Republicans think higher education is bad for the country. In a recent Pew Research Center survey, 58% believe institutions of higher learning have a negative impact on the state of our union. It was only 2015 when 54% of Republicans said “colleges and universities had a positive impact on the way things were going in the country.”
Could it be that Republicans believe a “liberal arts” education is somehow synonymous with a liberal political mindset?
Could it be the logical result of a current Republican party that has always been fond of anti-intellectualism?
Could it be conservative Christians, who make up the heart of the Republican base, just protecting their “magical-thinking” turf?
Whatever the reason, our country is in a deep pile of fecal matter.
Knowledge may be good, but ignorance is bliss.
The United States must surely be one of the happiest countries on earth! Sad.
Photo | nonprofithub.com
If one didn’t know any better, it would appear Donald Trump is doing all he can to be thrown out of office. Yet no matter how insane, embarrassing or dangerous his actions may be, congressional Republicans, who hold the power to remove him from the White House, are just sucking it up and supporting our narcissistic, lying and completely incompetent president.
After firing FBI Director James Comey, in the middle of his investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia to influence the 2016 presidential election, there was widespread talk of obstruction of justice. But to Republicans, it was the president just exercising his constitutional right to fire the director at will.
When Trump revealed highly sensitive information in a private White House meeting with two top Russian officials, he was not disclosing classified information to a foreign enemy. Republicans stuck to their taking point that, constitutionally, information is not classified if a president reveals it.
On a related note, let’s not forget when candidate Trump was caught on tape bragging about how his celebrity status gives him the power to force himself on women. What did Republicans say, even the pious ones? No, it was not sexual assault; it was just “boys being boys,” you know, “locker-room” talk.
Now we are faced with the scary aftermath of Trump’s “first” meeting with Russian strongman Vladimir Putin. It appears, despite the total consensus among U.S. intelligence agencies to the contrary, Trump has accepted Putin’s vehement denial that Russia tampered with our 2016 election. “Now is the time to move forward in working constructively with Russia,” Trump tweeted today.
Our country is attacked by a hostile foreign power and Republicans are for the most part mum?
At least a few Republicans criticized Trump’s ludicrous idea of partnering with Putin on a “Cyber Security Unit.”
“Putin and I discussed forming an impenetrable Cyber Security unit so that election hacking, and many other negative things, will be guarded,” Trump also tweeted today.
Marco Rubio and Lindsey Graham are having none of it. Rubio said in a tweet today, “Partnering with Putin on a ‘Cyber Security Unit’ is akin to partnering with Assad on a “Chemical Weapons Unit.” More apropos, it’s like devising a home security system with the guy that just broke into your house.
Is Trump just pushing the envelope, hoping for his removal from an office he is not prepared for and doesn’t particularly like?
Nah, Trump is just not that calculating or thoughtful!
How much more harm does Trump have to inflict on our country, intentionally or otherwise, before enough Republicans say, “enough is enough?”
Under Federal Law, treason is defined as: Whoever, owing allegiance to the United States, levies war against them or adheres to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort within the United States or elsewhere, is guilty of treason and shall suffer death, or shall be imprisoned not less than five years and fined under this title but not less than $10,000; and shall be incapable of holding any office under the United States. (18 U.S. Code Chapter 115)
Before attending this week’s G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany, Trump made a pit stop in Poland. Trump went out of his way to praise the increasingly authoritarian president, Andrzej Duda, who he described as “an example to others who seek freedom.” And why not? The Polish leader was kind enough to bus in thousands of ringers to make sure the U.S. president was greeted with cheers and adulation.
Donald Trump then proceeded to do what no previous American president had ever done. He trashed a former president, and his own intelligence agencies, while on foreign soil. He also found time to attack the American press. He picked on his favorite target, CNN.
The President accused the cable news network of being “fake news for a long time. They’ve been covering me in a very dishonest way.” Duda must have been beaming!
Trump was just getting started.
At the G20 summit on Friday, the much-anticipated meeting between Donald Trump and Russian leader Vladimir Putin took place.
It is being reported that Donald Trump “confronted” Putin about meddling in our 2016 presidential election. Of course, Putin denied any Russian involvement. And our fearless-defender-of-democracy president apparently decided to just leave it at that.
No one really knows what was discussed in the meeting as only Trump and Putin, along with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, were in attendance.
U.S. intelligence agencies are 100% sure it was Russia, at the direction of Putin himself, that tampered with our 2016 elections. Something that, to this day, Trump refuses to fully acknowledge. This was unmistakably an attack by a hostile foreign power on the very foundation of our democracy … the integrity of our electoral system. And yet, Trump let’s Putin off the hook with a perfunctory scolding? A slap on the wrist and let’s move on?
I know, I know we are not “at war” with Russia and that’s normally a requirement for treason. But could the Founding Fathers have envisioned cyber warfare? If Trump’s actions don’t amount to giving aid and comfort to our enemy, I don’t know what are.
Let’s clear up any ambiguity. Let us just agree that the federal statute has been “modified” to include one final sentence: “ Unless you’re Donald Trump.”
Photo | bbc.com