All entries by this author

Hello? Everyone here? You’re all fired.

Jun 6th, 2018 5:19 pm | By

No more consumer protection for you!

Mick Mulvaney, the acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, was expected to meet on Wednesday with members of its consumer advisory board, which provides feedback on the bureau’s rules and policies.

Instead, one of his deputies dismissed the board’s members.

By law, the bureau must convene the advisory board and hold at least two in-person meetings with its members a year. The bureau canceled a meeting scheduled for February, and last week it canceled one planned for this week.

Instead it put on a conference call and fired them. Boom.

The consumer advisory board’s members are consumer activists, academics, entrepreneurs who run financial start-ups and industry representatives from companies including Citi, Discover,

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38 words

Jun 6th, 2018 5:08 pm | By

But at least he’s fixed the patriotism problem.

Only a few of the Super Bowl-winning Philadelphia Eagles were going to show up at the White House to meet the president, so the White House emitted a Very Strongly Worded Statement saying that the Eagles had been disinvited because they were not willing to respect the national anthem. No, the statement said, the president could not bear to see the flag and the troops and this amber grain-waving land so sorely disrespected, so therefore they would be having an afternoon of patriotic singing and troop saluting with no Philadelphia Eagles whatsoever, just regular eagles, if any were available, that fans of the sports franchise (or White House staff) would be

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Magnetic ego

Jun 6th, 2018 4:48 pm | By

The many ironies in Trump’s whining about news reports on Melania Trump’s long absence from public view…

President Trump engaged in characteristic hyperbole when he tweeted Wednesday that the media “reported everything from near death, to facelift, to left the W.H. (and me) for N.Y. or Virginia, to abuse” — as if reputable journalists had presented various conspiracy theories as fact.

Moreover, the president ignored or failed to see the multiple ironies in his grievance.

For starters, the president’s tweets amount to a complaint about conspiracy theories from the man who spent years promoting the conspiracy theory that Barack Obama was not born in the United States and who touted the “amazing” reputation of Infowars founder Alex Jones, a 9/11

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Classic, straight-up misogyny

Jun 6th, 2018 12:20 pm | By

Sean Illing at Vox talks to feminist philosopher Kate Manne about what’s really so great about Jordan Peterson anyway?

Sean Illing

Peterson has this recurring interest in identifying social hierarchies, which resonates with people who think they’re in danger of losing their privileged position or are resentful about having lost it. This is something you really home in on in your review of his book.

Kate Manne

Yeah. I mean, it’s striking. There’s an interesting moment in the book where Peterson talks about resentment as a “revelatory” emotion that can mean one of two things. One, you feel it because you’re immature, in which case you just need to buck up. Two, you feel resentment because you really are

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So unfair, and vicious

Jun 6th, 2018 10:26 am | By

Today:

A year ago:

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They just get lower and lower

Jun 6th, 2018 10:08 am | By

Another day, another

The AP article on Rudy’s jaunt to Tel Aviv:

TEL AVIV, Israel (AP) — Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani said Wednesday that special counsel Robert Mueller’s team is trying to frame President Donald Trump.

Football players who kneel while a patriotic song is sung are Disloyal but the president’s lawyer talking shit about the US justice system in a foreign country is Loyal+++.

“There are a group of 13 highly partisan Democrats who make up the Mueller team, excluding him,

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Produce the evidence

Jun 6th, 2018 9:39 am | By

Now here’s a wild and crazy idea:

EPA must produce the opposing body of science Administrator Scott Pruitt has relied upon to claim that humans are not the primary drivers of global warming, a federal judge has ruled.

Whaaaaaaaaaaat? Produce actual reasons for making a claim? Produce actual evidence and argument and statistics? That’s unAmerican!

The EPA boss has so far resisted attempts to show the science backing up his claims. His critics say such evidence doesn’t exist, even as Pruitt has called for greater science transparency at the agency.

Now, a court case may compel him to produce research that attempts to contradict the mountain of peer-reviewed studies collected by the world’s top science agencies over decades that

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A pretty remarkable statement

Jun 5th, 2018 4:30 pm | By

Well, you see, it’s not about free speech, at least not according to Trump.

Yep, she said that.

“The president doesn’t think that this is an issue simply of free speech,” Sanders responded when reporters questioned why the White House supported the Supreme Court’s decision to protect the rights of a Colorado baker who refused to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple but not those of NFL players kneeling

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Only a 12-minute shindig

Jun 5th, 2018 4:03 pm | By

Trump’s Spite the Eagles party was a dud.

Donald Trump’s “celebration of America” at the White House, hastily put together on Tuesday in the absence of Super Bowl winners the Philadelphia Eagles, proved that rare thing in the Trump era: an anti-climax.

“I was surprised from the ordeal to get here that it was only a 12-minute shindig,” said Emma Wittstruck Call, 30, who did not vote for the president. “I thought it would be longer.”

Trump handed more ammunition to critics who compare him to a tinpot dictator wrapping himself in the flag and appealing to cheap patriotism. He did not mention the Eagles or attempt to heal divisions.

The event on the south lawn had been

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Ambassadors and Breitbart don’t mix

Jun 5th, 2018 3:48 pm | By

More shame and disgust.

German politicians have called for Donald Trump’s envoy in Berlin to be expelled from the country after he said in an interview that he wanted to “empower” conservative forces throughout Europe.

Ambassador Richard Grenell, who has been in office for less than a month, has caused irritation in Berlin with a series of perceived breaches of diplomatic etiquette.

On Monday, the former Fox News contributor further strayed beyond his ambassadorial remit by requesting a short meeting with Benjamin Netanyahu at Berlin’s airport following the Israeli prime minister’s meeting with Angela Merkel.

In Germany, Grenell’s series of unorthodox moves is drawing mounting criticism. Sahra Wagenknecht, the co-chair of leftwing party Die Linke, called for the

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Why ME and not HER?

Jun 5th, 2018 11:52 am | By

Frivolous lawsuit department:

A former Navy sailor who is one of five people to receive a pardon from President Donald Trump is planning to file a lawsuit against Obama administration officials, alleging that he was subject to unequal protection of the law.

Specifically, Kristian Saucier, who served a year in federal prison for taking photos of classified sections of the submarine on which he worked, argues that the same officials who meted out punishment to him for his actions chose to be lenient with Hillary Clinton in her use of a private email server and handling of classified information.

MO-OM IT’S NOT FAIR Jeffy stole two cookies and you punished me for burning the house down, IT’S NOT FAIR.… Read the rest



No here’s what REALLY happened

Jun 5th, 2018 11:42 am | By

Now the White House press secretary has put out a statement with a new story about why Trump picked a fight with some football players.

(I know this is small potatoes compared to the boulder-size ones, but I’m morbidly fascinated by this kind of culture war bullshit.)

After extensive discussions with the Eagles organization, which began in February, the team accepted an invitation from the President to attend a June 5 celebration of their victory in Super Bowl LII at the White House.

On Thursday, May 31, the team notified the White House of 81 individuals, including players, coaches, management, and support personnel, who would attend the event.  On Friday, the Secret Service cleared them for participation.  These individuals, along

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A fragile egomaniac

Jun 5th, 2018 11:21 am | By

Philadelphia’s mayor issued a statement about Trump’s abrupt last-minute cancellation of the celebration he had offered the city’s football team.

Mayor Kenney released the following statement on the recent decision of President Trump to disinvite the Philadelphia Eagles from visiting the White House:

“The Eagles call the birthplace of our democracy home, so it’s no surprise that this team embodies everything that makes our country and our city great. Their athletic accomplishments on the field led to an historic victory this year. Fans all across the country rallied behind them because we like to root for the underdog and we feel joy when we see the underdogs finally win. I’m equally proud of the Eagles’ activism off the field. These

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Salute the flag or else

Jun 5th, 2018 10:20 am | By

Chris Cillizza itemizes the wrongs in Trump’s idiotic “statement” yesterday on why he was telling a football team that they can’t come to his our house.

2. Trump doesn’t own the White House. Trump seems to be treating 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue like one of his Trump properties. If only you had done things the way I wanted them done, then maybe you could be reclining in one of my 5-star hotels right now — or playing golf at one of my award-winning courses. That is how Trump thinks.

But it’s not his, and he’s not supposed to brandish it to punish people for dissent. He’s not supposed to punish people for dissent at all.

3. Trump’s definition of

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De gustibus

Jun 5th, 2018 9:34 am | By

Michelle Goldberg cites a disquieting statistic:

Whatever Trump does, most Republicans will probably go along with it. In 500 days, Trump has managed to turn much of what remains of his party into an authoritarian cult. Among Republicans, he has an 87 percent approval rating; the only modern Republican president who was more popular with his own party at this point in his term was George W. Bush, and that was mere months after Sept. 11. A recent poll of voters in congressional swing districts found that 71 percent of Republicans “mostly like” Trump’s handling of F.B.I. and criminal justice officials.

Among Republicans he has an exceptionally high approval rating.

That’s appalling. That terrible mean bullying venomous vindictive … Read the rest



Loudly and proudly

Jun 4th, 2018 4:50 pm | By

Anyway, Trump is still hard at work making Murika great and shit.

He issued a statement.

The Philadelphia Eagles are unable to come to the White House with their full team to be celebrated tomorrow. They disagree with their President because he insists that they proudly stand for the National Anthem, hand on heart, in honor of the great men and women of our military and the people of our country. The Eagles wanted to send a smaller delegation, but the 1,000 fans planning to attend the event deserve better. These fans are still invited to

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As thousands remain stranded in squalor

Jun 4th, 2018 4:25 pm | By

James Downie at the Post on Puerto Rico and neglect:

On Friday night, the Puerto Rico Department of Health for the first time in six months released official mortality numbers related to Hurricane Maria, which devastated the island last September. The department counted at least 1,400 additional deaths on the island from September to December 2017 compared with the same period the previous year. That finding came three days after a Harvard University study was published that calculated some 4,600 additional deaths due to Maria. Both estimates are many times the official death count of 64 and suggest that Maria was one of the deadliest disasters in U.S. history.

Yet on the major Sunday talk shows — the purest

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The fundamental rule that no one may be a judge in his own case

Jun 4th, 2018 3:33 pm | By

There may be a snag.

Trump took to Twitter on Monday to claim his “absolute right” to grant himself a presidential pardon, though he said it would be unnecessary as he has “done nothing wrong.” He cited “numerous legal scholars” to back his claim.

However, as Bloomberg reporter Steven Dennis pointed out, that wasn’t the case at the end of former President Richard Nixon’s time in office. “Under the fundamental rule that no one may be a judge in his own case, the president cannot pardon himself,” the Department of Justice declared in 1974. The DOJ spelled it out just four days before Nixon resigned, explaining that the president’s pardoning power “does not extend to the president himself.”

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Because he knows that no one will stop him

Jun 4th, 2018 12:52 pm | By

Will Bunch on Trump the norms-buster.

The main reason that Trump violates long-standing norms and established rules, or tells so many easily disprovable lies from the presidential podium, is because he knows that no one will stop him. And that exercise of unchallenged power isn’t just a weird quirk of the Trump presidency. It is, rather, its driving force.

I’m talking about forbearance, and if that word lulls you to sleep, maybe that’s part of the problem. What that term means — and it’s laid out brilliantly by political scientists Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt in their 2018 best seller with the chilling title, How Democracies Die — is “not deploying one’s institutional prerogatives to the

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Your silence is absolutely deafening

Jun 4th, 2018 11:53 am | By

At least some people are noticing.

She’s our Rep by the way, Seattle’s own.

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