All entries by this author

Not just the facts

Oct 3rd, 2018 4:30 pm | By

Look at this fucking lying hack.

Trump was not “stating facts” in that disgusting performance last night. It’s not “stating facts” to pretend to be someone else saying silly things. I’d like to know what Sarah Sanders would have to say if a school bully did that kind of mocking “oh look this is you” performance to one of her kids. I don’t think she would claim the bully … Read the rest

Not going away

Oct 3rd, 2018 12:00 pm | By

Claire Potter on Kavanaugh as Trump’s surrogate bully:

While two Republican senators have condemned what is now routine behavior from the President, Kellyanne Conway, the President’s designated sexual assault spokesperson in the West Wing, indicated that Blasey had caused everyone enough trouble and she should go away now. “The woman has been accommodated by all of us, including Senate Judiciary Committee,” Conway snapped. “She’s been treated like a Faberge egg by all of us, beginning with me and the President. He’s pointing out factual inconsistencies.”

You know what seems like a Faberge egg right now? Democracy. Process. Human decency. The damage that the Kavanaugh hearings has done is so thick you can practically taste it floating in the

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Kiss abortion rights goodbye

Oct 3rd, 2018 11:37 am | By

Laurence Tribe writes in the Globe that Kavanaugh, if confirmed, will vote to kill Roe v Wade, and was tricksy about it in the hearings.

Several senators have said they would not vote to confirm Judge Brett Kavanaugh as a Supreme Court justice if they believed he would vote to undo the basic protections for women upheld in Roe v. Wade and other cases. So if his testimony and his meetings with those senators had exposed that as his almost-certain path, they would vote no.

But the only reason his public testimony and private meetings didn’t reveal such a clear inclination is that Judge Kavanaugh dissembled about his views, calling the Supreme Court’s abortion rulings “precedent on precedent,”

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Civilians versus scumbags

Oct 3rd, 2018 10:09 am | By

No wonder Trump likes Putin so much.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has labelled poisoned ex-Russian spy Sergei Skripal a “traitor” and a “scumbag”.

In a speech, he complained that the media were treating Mr Skripal as “some kind of human rights defender”, insisting he had betrayed his country.

And that’s why we poisoned him! Wouldn’t anyone?

“I see that some of our colleagues are pushing the theory that Mr Skripal was almost some kind of human rights activist,” Mr Putin said on Wednesday.

The Russian leader, a former intelligence officer himself, then described Mr Skripal as a “traitor to the motherland”.

“He’s simply a scumbag, that’s all.”

And what do we do to scumbags? We murder them. Doesn’t everyone?… Read the rest

A very scary time for young men

Oct 3rd, 2018 9:41 am | By

Jennifer Rubin points out how rich it is for Trump to start manscreaming about the presumption of innocence.

President Trump on Tuesday cranked up the volume on his white male base’s primal scream to ear-shattering decibels. He worries that this is a “very scary time for young men” in America, who are at risk of being accused of things they didn’t do. He insists, “My whole life I’ve heard you’re innocent until proven guilty, but now you’re guilty until proven innocent. That is a very, very difficult standard.” The president — with more than a dozen accusers claiming he engaged in unwanted sexual conduct — knows a thing or two about victimhood, he’d have you believe.

As he demonstrated in … Read the rest

It should disgust us all the same

Oct 3rd, 2018 8:18 am | By

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The Bully-in-chief

Oct 3rd, 2018 8:11 am | By

CNN on Trump’s sneers at Ford last night:

President Donald Trump for the first time directly mocked Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee by casting doubt on her testimony during a campaign rally.

Before the crowd Tuesday night in Southaven, Mississippi, Trump imitated Ford during her testimony, mocking her for not knowing the answers to questions such as how she had gotten to the high school party where she says Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her.

“I had one beer. Well, do you think it was — nope, it was one beer,” Trump said, mimicking Ford’s testimony last week to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

“How did you get home? I don’t remember. How’d you

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One angry man

Oct 2nd, 2018 5:45 pm | By

Trump at yet another “rally” (is it every day this week?) makes fun of Christine Blasey Ford, gets maudlin about Kavanaugh and “his wife” and his “daughters, his beautiful incredible kids” [whom he would love to date in a year or two] and then ends with “these are really evil people” – meaning the ones who accuse men of sexual assault.

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It seemed like a different person altogether

Oct 2nd, 2018 5:09 pm | By

Benjamin Wittes wrestles with the Kavanaugh issue.

I have a long relationship with Kavanaugh, and I have always liked him. I have admired his career on the D.C. Circuit. I have spoken warmly of him. I have published him. I have vouched publicly for his character—more than once—and taken a fair bit of heat for doing so.

He advised Kavanaugh (also at The Atlantic) to withdraw unless he could dispute Ford’s account without leaving a scorched earth behind.

Kavanaugh, needless to say, did not take my advice. He stayed in, and he delivered on Thursday, by way of defense, a howl of rage. He went on the attack not against Ford—for that we can be grateful—but against Democrats

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That walking, talking, golfing bundle of resentment

Oct 2nd, 2018 11:44 am | By

Paul Krugman talks about Trumpism and Kavanaugh as a matter of white men enraged by challenges to their privileged status.

I’ve spent my whole adult life in rarefied academic circles, where everyone has a good income and excellent working conditions. Yet I know many people in that world who are seething with resentment because they aren’t at Harvard or Yale, or who actually are at Harvard or Yale but are seething all the same because they haven’t received a Nobel Prize.

And this sort of high-end resentment, the anger of highly privileged people who nonetheless feel that they aren’t privileged enough or that their privileges might be eroded by social change, suffuses the modern conservative movement.

It starts, of

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Oct 2nd, 2018 11:30 am | By

Gnu AtheismRead the rest

Excused for showing passion

Oct 2nd, 2018 11:06 am | By

Sheryl Gay Stolberg in the Times yesterday:

Democratic efforts to highlight sexual assault charges that are more than 30 years old have been dismissed by supporters of Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh as the dredgings of ancient history. But the judge’s response to those accusations has raised new issues that go to the core of who President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee is right now: his truthfulness, his partisanship and his temperament.

And, in my view, his ability to reason. Sure, we all get that he’s livid because the allegations are about him and not someone else. It’s human to take things personally; it’s human to go ballistic when it’s you and look on with calm detachment when it’s not you. … Read the rest

Threats under oath

Oct 2nd, 2018 10:36 am | By

Laurence Tribe makes an interesting point.

I hadn’t really thought about it in that light. He created a visible conflict of interest for himself with all that raging at “the left” and Democrats.… Read the rest

Behind the scenes and before the New Yorker story

Oct 2nd, 2018 10:02 am | By

Another indication that Kavanaugh may have tried to stifle claims about his behavior:

In the days leading up to a public allegation that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh exposed himself to a college classmate, the judge and his team were communicating behind the scenes with friends to refute the claim, according to text messages obtained by NBC News.

Kerry Berchem, who was at Yale with both Kavanaugh and his accuser, Deborah Ramirez, has tried to get those messages to the FBI for its newly reopened investigation into the matter but says she has yet to be contacted by the bureau.

The texts between Berchem and Karen Yarasavage, both friends of Kavanaugh, suggest that the nominee was personally talking with former

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Oct 2nd, 2018 8:48 am | By

One of Kavanaugh’s lies that I find peculiarly exasperating, especially from a lawyer:

BRETT KAVANAUGH: Dr. Ford’s allegation is not merely uncorroborated. It is refuted by the very people she says were there, including by a longtime friend of hers – refuted.

But that’s bullshit and any lawyer would know that.

Most simply and obviously it’s bullshit because the people he’s talking about didn’t even say that, they said only what is reasonable: that they don’t remember it. How would they remember it? They weren’t there, remember? They were in the house but they were not in the room. They were downstairs in the living room, while the assault Ford describes happened upstairs in a bedroom with the door closed. … Read the rest

Mitch McConnell and treason

Oct 2nd, 2018 8:25 am | By

McConnell tells Brennan he won’t condemn Russian interference but he will condemn Brennan and the Obama administration for talking about it.… Read the rest

Fear immigrants and journalists

Oct 1st, 2018 5:30 pm | By

Just in case there was any doubt – he hasn’t stopped.

He’s like a wind-up Hitler croaking away, except that millions of people listen and … Read the rest

You never do

Oct 1st, 2018 5:04 pm | By

Trump earlier today:

Here is Trump calling on ABC News’s Cecilia Vega for the first question of the news conference:

Trump: “She’s shocked that I picked her. She’s in a state of shock.

Vega: “I’m not. Thank you, Mr. President.”

Trump: “That’s okay, I know you’re not thinking. You never do.”

Vega: “I’m sorry?

Trump: “No, go ahead.”

It seems likely Trump heard her say “I’m not thinking,” instead of “Thank you,” hence his reply. Still, there are two things about this exchange that are disturbing, although not out of character for Trump:

First, his attack on Vega came out of the blue. Vega hadn’t yet asked a question, so Trump can’t blame his derision on something she had

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Oh all right if you insist

Oct 1st, 2018 11:43 am | By

The Times has breaking news:

The White House has authorized the F.B.I. to expand its abbreviated investigation into sexual misconduct allegations against Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh by interviewing anyone it deems necessary as long the review is finished by the end of the week, two people briefed on the matter said on Monday.

The new directive came in the past 24 hours after a backlash from Democrats, who criticized the White House for limiting the scope of the bureau’s investigation into President Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court. The F.B.I. has already completed interviews with the four witnesses its agents were originally asked to talk to, the people said.

I don’t know if this is more of the same … Read the rest

Please hold

Oct 1st, 2018 11:02 am | By

Ok fine you can have your god damn investigation if you’re going to get in such a fit about it. You just can’t interview anyone. Jane Mayer and Ronan Farrow in the New Yorker:

As the F.B.I. began its investigation this weekend into allegations of sexual misconduct by Brett Kavanaugh, President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, several people who hope to contribute information about him to the F.B.I. said that they were unable to make contact with agents.

That’s interesting, because we the public have been being told don’t wait to be called, if you have any relevant information get in touch with the FBI yourselves.

With a one-week deadline looming over the investigation, some who say they have

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