What is allowed and what is not

Jul 3rd, 2020 11:22 am | By

Who is the top person here?

Jul 3rd, 2020 11:02 am | By

It’s old news now but I’m still kind of fascinated by it – Trump’s hostility to democratic allies and comfort with authoritarian rivals and enemies. He’s repelled by the one and drawn to the other.

Those who have witnessed the president’s phone calls and meetings with foreign leaders said he had a weakness for monarchs and leaders with absolute power, because that is how he would ideally like to govern. He could be contemptuous of democratic allies, on the other hand, if they had done poorly in elections or opinion polls, and generally viewed them as supplicants asking for personal favours. “Catch Trump at the wrong moment, when he has a fresh grievance (ie most days) and he can be pretty charmless,” a former European official said.

It’s not ideological, it seems, it’s more instinctive and personal than that. He likes bullies and dislikes non-bullies.

“It’s not that it’s like a fascination with Putin and Russia per se. It’s the image of the person itself, and what they stand for,” the former aide said. “He wants to be seen as somebody who can completely have his own way. And he wants to be seen in the company of people who he sees that reflected in. People with ultimate authority, swagger.”

“It was the same with MBS [Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman],” the former official added. “And he’s super deferential to the Queen – unbelievably deferential and obsequious to the Queen.”

In other words it’s terribly terribly simple. Horrible, and simple.

Make masks butch again

Jul 3rd, 2020 9:38 am | By

Masks and “masculinity” – you’d think that was about as random as masks and mustard or masks and Mars, but no, apparently masks are a threat to the Rule of Testicle-havers.

When HIV emerged in the United States, a key part of the public health response was to urge consistent condom use. Although the advice made obvious sense, in some pockets of the population, people resisted it. Researchers began to dig into the social factors that motivated this resistance. They found that among men who were having sex with women, “masculine ideology” was associated with rejection of condom use.

Ah so that’s the culprit! Have we come up with an effective vaccination for it yet?

At the time the research was being conducted, three factors were cited as the pillars of this ideology: status, toughness and anti-femininity.

And you can’t really do the “anti-femininity” thing without at least a tinge of misogyny. To put it another way, why be “anti-femininity” at all unless you think there’s something bad and tainted and disgusting about being female? And if you think there’s something bad and tainted and disgusting about being female, well…that’s misogyny.

In other words it’s a kind of loop we’re stuck in. We all learn as toddlers that boys are stronger than girls; we learn it at a minimum as part of the rules of engagement. At a primitive level, stronger=better. This means that being seen as, or called, girl-like is a profound threat to male people. Boom: misogyny is born.

So here we are. Male people who are never taught, or who refuse to learn, that female people are not in fact inferior by virtue of having less muscle mass become people who refuse to wear masks because ew girly.

Today, the concept has been expanded a bit to encompass other features. The American Psychological Association has defined this ideology as a “particular constellation of standards” that demands that men ascribe to “adventure, risk, and violence.” Certainly, choosing not to wear the simplest of protective gear during a pandemic is both a risk and an adventure.

But the risk is greater for other people, so that shouldn’t count in the masculinity score, but it does anyway.

Perhaps not surprisingly, where this conceptualization of manliness prevails, the dominant avatars who embody it are white men with epic swagger. As one researcher described it, this “celluloid masculinity” muscling around on screens, perhaps most famously in the form of characters played by Arnold Schwarzenegger, represents a “dominant Western exemplar of manhood.” These characters, you see, despite the copious body armor and weaponry they tote around in their films, would never, ever don simple barrier protection devices because viruses can sense fear.

Well, body armor suggests combat, heroics, noise, smoke. Masks suggest hospitals. No Enemy Soldier ever quailed at the sight of a dude in a little cloth mask. Maybe we could issue men olive green masks with images of grenades and assault rifles on them?

Of a different generation

Jul 2nd, 2020 6:16 pm | By

Speaking of moral density…a license facility in Texas had to close because of a case of the virus.

Since reopening on 3 June, the facility had spaced seats inside to meet social distancing guidelines, cleaned surfaces regularly and only served those who booked appointments online. All workers wore masks, and anybody allowed in was required to wear a face covering. But despite the precautions, a Covid-19 case had been reported there.

One of the people turned away was Laurie Smith, 50. She is an administrative employee at a local church, where she is also a member, and calls mandatory mask requirements a sign of “sad” government manipulation. “My college-age kids are able to follow the recommendations without questioning it, but my husband and I are of a different generation, and we value our liberty to be able to make our own choices. So we question it more than they do,” she said.

No, see, that’s not it. We all value our liberty to make our own choices, ffs. We don’t go to BurgerKing and say “You choose for me.” We all like to make our own choices, we all like our freedom, nobody likes wearing a mask. The issue is that wearing or not wearing a mask is not a purely personal choice, and that’s why we don’t get to treat it as if it is. The choice affects others, and in a non-trivial way. What speed we drive our cars is also not a purely personal choice, and for the same reason. If we’re all alone on a driving range we can go as fast as we like, and if we’re not we can’t, because the choice does not just affect us. It’s a pretty simple idea, I think.

The science of wearing masks to prevent the spread of coronavirus seems to be largely settled, but the politics around it is still raging, especially in conservative strongholds like Texas. Stores, churches, small businesses, government offices and other institutions across the state are grappling with how to enforce public health rules without alienating those who disagree.

You know, often “conservative” means people who pay a lot of attention to how we treat each other. It’s not at all obvious to me that it has to mean refusing to wear a mask during a pandemic. It’s a pretty warped brand of conservatism that thinks it does.

“We don’t live in a communist country! This is supposed to be America,” said Tee Allen Parker, who has banned wearing of masks at her bar.

But communism isn’t about wearing masks. Also? Capitalism isn’t about refusing to wear masks to slow a pandemic.

Just a thought.

Guest post: The whole of Anglo-Saxondom was pervaded by racism

Jul 2nd, 2020 5:34 pm | By

Originally a comment by Tim Harris on Slavery gets all but erased.

The Nazis did learn a great deal from the USA. But, really, the whole of Anglo-Saxondom was pervaded by racism. Thatcher & Reagan were supporting the apartheid regime in South Africa not so long ago, the treatment of native people in Australia continues to be abysmal, and it does not seem to be all that much better in North America, particularly when an oil pipeline is at stake. This is not to mention the Belgians in the Congo and the Germans in Namibia, and earlier the Spaniards and the Poruguese. The Rio Tinto mining corporation, with the connivance of the Australian government, blew up a few months ago a cave on an Aboriginal sacred site that had been occupied on and off for 40,000 years to the fury naturally of native people, and also of archaeologists, and offered wholly cynical apologies for the ‘distress’ they might have caused after the justified outcry. Great swathes of documents (those that were not illegally destroyed) concerning the Mau-Mau uprising in Kenya and the British response have fairly recently been discovered, hidden away illegally for years and years. And the British government has recently refused to abide by a virtually unanimous UN decision against its occupation of the Chagos archipelago, a part of Mauritius, from which it deported all the inhabitants to Britain. There is a good article in the Guardian (Google: Philippe Sands, Guardian – ‘At last, the Chagossians have a real chance of going back home’) by Philippe Sands, the author of two truly remarkable and harrowing books concerning the Holocaust, ‘East West Street: on the Origins of Genocide & Crimes against Humanity’ and ‘The Ratline: Love, Lies & Justice on the Trail of a Nazi Fugitive’. Sands is Jewish (and many of his family perished in the Holocaust), and is professor of law at University College London and a barrister at Matrix Chambers. He is counsel for Mauritius on Chagos, and has been involved in many human important rights cases, including that of Pinochet and his torture regime.

On a more personal note, I was asked some years ago to play two small parts (one being Mark Twain) in a good community theatre production of the musical ‘Big River’, which is a version of ‘Huckleberry Finn’. During one of the rehearsals in which a group of recaptured slaves were being marched across the rear of the stage, singing a genuine song from the times of slavery about the desire for freedom, a Jamaican actor had a complete breakdown and ran from the stage shivering and crying. I was in tears, and afterwards, speaking to the very good African-American actor and singer who took the part of Jim, I remarked on how painful the musical was, and he said gravely, ‘Yes, it takes you to places you don’t want to go.’ The production was a good one, because it genuinely brought out the horrors of slavery, as the Broadway or other professional productions you may find on YouTube definitely do not: they play down the horrors and the importance of Jim, making it all about Huck, and sentimentalise things, and so do not do justice at all to what is there in the libretto and music. Our director did a remarkable job, as did all the actors.

Finally, I note that such as Sam Harris and Jerry Coyne are now questioning whether the figures for the deaths of American black people at the hands of the police are really as bad as they are claimed to be – the only implication of which, so far as I can see, is that they suppose that if the figures aren’t quite right, the Black Lives Matter movement is unjustified.

Don’t hit us, we hate her too!

Jul 2nd, 2020 5:13 pm | By


MuggleNet and The Leaky Cauldron, two of the largest and most well-established “Harry Potter” fan communities online, released a joint statement on Thursday in support of transgender individuals and rejecting the transphobic comments made by series author J.K. Rowling on Twitter and her website in June.

Because it would never do to just let her have her opinion. Must denounce! Must denounce the witch!

“Although it is difficult to speak out against someone whose work we have so long admired, it would be wrong not to use our platforms to counteract the harm she has caused,” the statement reads. “Our stance is firm: Transgender women are women. Transgender men are men. Non-binary people are non-binary. Intersex people exist and should not be forced to live in the binary. We stand with Harry Potter fans in these communities, and while we don’t condone the mistreatment JKR has received for airing her opinions about transgender people, we must reject her beliefs.”

No, it wouldn’t be wrong not to use their platforms to throw mud at the woman whose work is central to their existence. No, transgender women are not women. No, transgender men are not men. (Notice which came first. Always the way. It’s always the trans women who use up the most oxygen. Funny how being trans doesn’t change that, isn’t it.) “Non-binary” doesn’t mean anything. “Forced to live in the binary” doesn’t mean anything. No, there is no necessity for these twerps to reject Rowling’s beliefs in a self-important “statement” and thus do their bit to add to the bullying of her. No necessity at all.

Additionally, the sites announced that they would refer to the author as #JKR in the future, allowing fans to easily mute the hashtag to prevent posts about the author from appearing on their social media feeds.

Yeah. Organize your lives around her work, but erase her.

MuggleNet and The Leaky Cauldron’s statement was written with consultation from GLAAD and the Trevor Project.

So they don’t even know what they think about her views, they have to bring in the experts to throw the right amount and quality of mud at her.

Freedoms and liberties

Jul 2nd, 2020 1:33 pm | By

Herman Caine is in the hospital with COVID-19; I wonder if South Dakota governor Kristi Noem is having any second thoughts. I wonder rhetorically; in reality I figure she’s being obstinately stupid to the end.

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) told Fox News’ Laura Ingraham on Monday that attendees at a July 3 event at Mount Rushmore where President Trump is set to speak will not be required to practice social distancing.

This at a time when infections are rocketing up in this country.

“We will have a large event on July 3. We told those folks that have concerns that they can stay home, but those who want to come and join us, we’ll be giving out free face masks, if they choose to wear one. But we won’t be social distancing.”

In other words, “We will be doing everything we can to make the situation worse. We will actively prevent people from taking measures to try to prevent infection. We will use this political event to cause more disease and death. That is our intention. We are proud of it.”

“We’re asking them to come — be ready to celebrate, to enjoy the freedoms and the liberties that we have in this country,” Noem added.

The freedoms and liberties to spread a fatal disease.

People are fed up…

Jul 2nd, 2020 1:14 pm | By

Herman Cain 22 hours ago:

Right on!!!

The Guardian two hours ago:

Herman Cain, the former 2012 Republican presidential candidate, has tested positive for Covid-19. His team announced the results on Thursday.

Cain, something of a minor figure in the pantheon of Donald Trump’s campaign surrogates, attended the rally for Trump’s reelection campaign in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Health officials warned that attendees at that rally could contract coronavirus. It’s not clear when Cain contracted it.


No masks, no distancing…

Silence the experts

Jul 2nd, 2020 12:40 pm | By

Meanwhile, in between COVID parties, we should also prevent medical experts from keeping us informed, because if we’re not informed, we won’t realize how badly Trump is fucking up.

Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.) on Thursday called for the White House to dissolve its coronavirus task force so that health officials like Anthony Fauci and Deborah Birx are prevented from contradicting many of President Trump’s “stated goals and actions” when it comes to the economy.  

Maricopa County, part of which Biggs represents, has seen record-breaking spikes in coronavirus cases recently, with more than 52,000 total cases and 817 deaths — the highest in the state.

Therefore, let’s cover it up.

What Biggs said:

“As our economy is restored, it is imperative that President Trump is not undermined in his mission to return our economy to greatness. Dr. Anthony Fauci and Dr. Deborah Birx continue to contradict many of President Trump’s stated goals and actions for returning to normalcy as we know more about the COVID-19 outbreak.

This is causing panic that compromises our economic recovery. We can protect our most vulnerable from the COVID-19 outbreak while still protecting lives and livelihoods of the rest of the population. It’s time for the COVID-19 task force to be disbanded so that President Trump’s message is not mitigated or distorted.”

Notice he doesn’t explain how “we can protect our most vulnerable from the COVID-19 outbreak while still protecting lives and livelihoods of the rest of the population.” I’m guessing that’s because he doesn’t know how, and that that’s because it’s not true: we can’t.

Tuscaloosa news

Jul 2nd, 2020 11:15 am | By

Kids do the darndest things.

Students in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 have been attending parties in the city and surrounding area as part of a disturbing contest to see who can catch the virus first, a city council member told ABC News on Wednesday.

Tuscaloosa City Councilor Sonya McKinstry said students have been organizing “COVID parties” as a game to intentionally infect each other with the contagion that has killed more than 127,000 people in the United States. She said she recently learned of the behavior and informed the city council of the parties occurring in the city.

What an interesting game. Kind of like Chicken but not as glamorous.

She said the organizers of the parties are purposely inviting guests who have COVID-19.

They pool their money, see, and whoever gets the fatal disease first gets the money. It’s not clear if the money is enough to cover their medical bills, or if the students check everyone’s health insurance before they can play.

Tuscaloosa Fire Chief Randy Smith told the City Council on Tuesday that he has confirmed the students’ careless behavior.

Wrong word. “Careless” is the wrong word. They’re being careful, careful to spread the virus. The behavior is murderous rather than careless.

In a briefing to the City Council, Smith expressed concern that in recent weeks there have been parties held throughout the city and surrounding Tuscaloosa County, “where students, or kids, would come in with known positive,” according to a video recording of the meeting obtained by ABC affiliate station WBMA in Birmingham.

“We thought that was kind of a rumor at first,” Smith told the council members. “We did some research. Not only do the doctors’ offices confirm it but the state confirmed they also had the same information.”

And what is the state doing about it? Not clear. Maybe nothing.

Updating to add: Screechy points out that this is not what you’d call documented, and sounds like bullshit. Fair enough. Add whatever number of question marks you think appropriate.


Jul 2nd, 2020 9:01 am | By


It's real': Trump campaign's new T-shirt insignia looks a lot like ...

Don’t buy the weave

Jul 2nd, 2020 7:54 am | By

Oh I see, China is selling Uighur body parts. That’s sinister enough I think…

Federal authorities in New York on Wednesday seized a shipment of weaves and other beauty accessories suspected to be made out of human hair taken from people locked inside a Chinese internment camp.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials told The Associated Press that 13 tons (11.8 metric tonnes) of hair products worth an estimated $800,000 were in the shipment.

Daaaaaaaaaaamn that’s a lot of women being shorn in concentration camps.

They’re also subject to forced labor (aka slavery), but who knows, maybe the people who run the camps are careful not to force any women to process their own hair into weaves.

Awaiting apologies

Jul 1st, 2020 4:55 pm | By

Cast your minds back to last week, if you will, to Damian Barr’s energetic campaign to push the Booker Foundation to monster Emma Nicholson.

The Guardian reported then:

Damian Barr is leading a charge of writers, including one former Booker prize winner, who are calling on the Booker Foundation to remove the allegedly “homophobic” peer Emma Nicholson from her position as vice-president.

Lady Nicholson of Winterbourne, who voted against the same-sex marriage bill in 2013, is the widow of the late former chairman of Booker, Sir Michael Caine, who helped establish the prize. She is currently a vice-president of the Booker Foundation, and a former trustee of the prize.

Barr, a novelist, memoirist and host of the Literary Salon, learned of her association with the prize earlier this week, after Munroe Bergdorf, the model and transgender activist, said she was referring Nicholson to the Parliamentary Standards Conduct Commissioner over Nicholson’s posts on social media about the trans community. The peer also drew fire earlier this month over her views on same-sex marriage.

Blah blah blah. They had their way; the Booker Foundation promptly did what it was told. Hooray! Another woman punished! Progressive triumph!

But, uh oh, it turns out Damian Barr once had a habit of saying actually cruel mocking things about trans people on Twitter…unlike Emma Nicholson and unlike the rest of us Notorious TERFs.

Flash forward a few years and he’s hugging himself in glee over bullying and ostracizing a woman.

I’m so tired of these creeps.

First Time Hearing

Jul 1st, 2020 4:16 pm | By

I didn’t know about these guys before. I love them.

After that one I watched the Pavarotti Nessun dorma one and had to stop watching any for awhile, it was so emo.

Now I’m going to see what they think of Johnny Cash.

He doesn’t want to hear it, you see

Jul 1st, 2020 3:42 pm | By

Well you see it’s like this – Trump gets really mad when the intel people tell him mean things about Russia, so they stopped telling him them and just put it all in the written-down briefing…but of course Trump can’t read, so that’s why he doesn’t know any of this stuff about Russia. All totally honest and aboveboard.

Early in his term, Trump’s briefers discovered that when his oral briefing included intelligence related to Russia’s malign activities against the United States, including evidence of its interference in US politics, Trump would often blow up at them, demanding to know why they kept focusing on Russia and often questioning the intelligence itself, multiple former administration officials said.

So that’s great. He’s not concerned about what Russia is doing to us, he’s concerned about what the professionals are telling him about Russia. He wants them to stop telling him the things, and tell him pleasanter things instead.

“The President has created an environment that dissuades, if not prohibits, the mentioning of any intelligence that isn’t favorable to Russia,” a former senior member of Trump’s national security staff told me.

Aaaand that’s not a national security nightmare because…? Remind me, because for the life of me I can’t remember that part.

In response, his briefers — who must make difficult judgment calls every day on which intelligence to highlight to the President — reduced the amount of Russian-related intelligence they included in his oral briefings, instead often placing it only in his written briefing book, a document that is provided daily and sometimes extended to several dozen pages containing the intelligence community’s most important information.

Come on. Several dozen pages. Trump? Be serious.

But his briefers discovered over time that he often did not read the briefing book, leaving him unaware of crucial intelligence, including threats related to Russia and other parts of the world.

You don’t say.

The end result was the President now heard less, not more, about the threat posed by one of the nation’s most dangerous adversaries. Among his national security staff, this approach led to fears that the President was becoming less and less aware of the threat from Russia, even as the intelligence confirming the country’s misbehavior mounted.

Because they’re dealing with a petulant irresponsible child who simply does not care about threats to the country if he doesn’t think they will threaten him personally.

“It creates a self-fulfilling prophecy where he hears less and less of what he doesn’t want to hear and therefore starts to believe more and more that the Russians aren’t doing anything bad,” the former senior NSC official said, explaining that when Trump later claimed in public that he hadn’t seen evidence of Russian aggression, he was sometimes telling the truth — but the reason he hadn’t seen it was that they hadn’t shown it to him fearing it would provoke a negative reaction.

Is there no adult supervision over there? Why is this adult infant allowed to sabotage intelligence communication by having tantrums? Why are there no grown ups telling him shut the fuck up and listen, this is your job, which you decided you wanted?

I saw this appalling story via Daniel Drezner, who apparently has an epic toddlerinchief hashtag thread.

Trump’s actual symbols of hate

Jul 1st, 2020 11:42 am | By

In all seriousness the racist loathing is coming out into the open now.

The Guardian notes:

Donald Trump is criticizing New York City’s plan to paint “Black Lives Matter” on 5th Avenue outside Trump Tower — calling it a “symbol of hate.”

Earlier New York City mayor Bill de Blasio announced the city would “take this moment in history and amplify it by taking the ‘Black Lives Matter’ symbolism and putting it all over this city, including right in front of Trump Tower.”

The move comes as the president stepped up his defense of actual symbols of hate: Confederate flags and monuments. Using a racist slur against Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren, Trump threatened to veto defense spending bills that include provisions to rename Confederate bases.

Let’s spell it out. “Black Lives Matter” is not a symbol of hate: it’s a statement of fact and a reminder that much needs to change to put that fact into practice. It’s a reminder that as a country we have acted as if black lives don’t matter for four fucking centuries now and it’s time to do better.

As the Graun says, Confederate flags and monuments really are symbols of hate, because they are endorsements of the Confederate cause, which was, all together now, SLAVERY.

And calling Warren “Pocahontas” is flippant contempt for the people who were here before Europeans waltzed in and grabbed everything.

Some replies to the Hater in Chief:

Fed up

Jul 1st, 2020 11:14 am | By

Look, if your house is on fire, the best thing to do is to tell the fire department it doesn’t know what it’s talking about and you don’t need its advice any more.

As coronavirus cases surge across the US, Dr Anthony Fauci, who lead’s the CDC’s pandemic response, is facing growing backlash from conservative leaders fed up with his warnings about states’ reopening efforts.

Very sensible. The problem is not the coronavirus or the surge in cases, the problem is some pesky expert in infectious diseases telling us how to avoid being infected. What the hell does he know about it?

“He doesn’t know what he’s talking about. I don’t need his advice anymore,” Texas lieutenant governor Dan Patrick told Fox News’ Laura Ingraham.

See? He doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Dan Patrick knows way more about it than he does. Obviously.

An amazing deal

Jul 1st, 2020 10:58 am | By

On the one hand pretend the pandemic isn’t happening, on the other hand buy up all the remdesivir.

The US has bought up virtually all the stocks for the next three months of one of the two drugs proven to work against Covid-19, leaving none for the UK, Europe or most of the rest of the world.

Experts and campaigners are alarmed both by the US unilateral action on remdesivir and the wider implications, for instance in the event of a vaccine becoming available. The Trump administration has already shown that it is prepared to outbid and outmanoeuvre all other countries to secure the medical supplies it needs for the US.

In other words to be as ruthlessly piggy as possible.

Remdesivir, the first drug approved by licensing authorities in the US to treat Covid-19, is made by Gilead and has been shown to help people recover faster from the disease. The first 140,000 doses, supplied to drug trials around the world, have been used up. The Trump administration has now bought more than 500,000 doses, which is all of Gilead’s production for July and 90% of August and September.

“President Trump has struck an amazing deal to ensure Americans have access to the first authorised therapeutic for Covid-19,” said the US health and human services secretary, Alex Azar. “To the extent possible, we want to ensure that any American patient who needs remdesivir can get it.”

And that no one else can.

The drug, which was trialled in the Ebola epidemic but failed to work as expected, is under patent to Gilead, which means no other company in wealthy countries can make it. The cost is around $3,200 per treatment of six doses, according to the US government statement.

Patents and hoarding; capitalism at its finest.

Buying up the world’s supply of remdesivir is not just a reaction to the increasing spread and death toll. The US has taken an “America first” attitude throughout the global pandemic.

That is, Trump and his administration have.

Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau warned there could be unintended negative consequences if the US continued to outbid its allies. “We know it is in both of our interests to work collaboratively and cooperatively to keep our citizens safe,” he said. The Trump administration has also invoked the Defense Production Act to block some medical goods made in the US from being sent abroad.

Me first, me me me me me first.

Izza hoax

Jul 1st, 2020 10:28 am | By

It’s kind of like saying “the house is not on fire” while standing in front of the house as the flames consume it. Trump says it’s a hoax.

President Trump said Wednesday that reports of Russia paying bounties to Taliban-linked fighters to kill U.S. troops and coalition forces in Afghanistan is a hoax, even as his administration continues to brief members of Congress on the matter.

His administration is briefing members of Congress on the hoaxitude of the hoax. They need to be thorough about it.

“Do people still not understand that this is all a made up Fake News Media Hoax started to slander me & the Republican Party. I was never briefed because any info that they may have had did not rise to that level,” Trump said in an additional tweet.

Do Trump still not understand that nobody believe his lies?

Following the Democrats’ briefing, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md., told reporters that while there may be “different judgments as to the level of credibility,” he doesn’t agree with the president’s recent characterizations.

“The president called this a hoax publicly,” Hoyer said. “Nothing in the briefing that we have just received led me to believe it is a hoax.”

Yebbut you’re not Trump, so your judgement is distorted.

Then there’s a surprise.

Congressional Republicans and Democrats were briefed separately.

What? Wtf? Why? Shouldn’t briefings of all things be non-partisan aka the same no matter who is being briefed?

Rep. Elissa Slotkin, D-Mich., told Mary Louise Kelly on NPR’s All Things Considered that she would have preferred to receive the briefing alongside her Republican colleagues.

“In my experience, we should be receiving the same information whether you’re Democrat or Republican,” Slotkin said. “When it comes to the national security of the country, you know, we should all be putting politics aside and just getting the facts as we understand them.”

No shit. Why on earth would that not be standard procedure?

Denigrating this luxury avenue

Jul 1st, 2020 9:47 am | By

This would be funny if it weren’t so sickening – lately Trump has been complaining that Prince Jared is too much of a lefty and he Trump isn’t going to take his lefty advice any more.

President Trump has told people in recent days that he regrets following some of son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner’s political advice — including supporting criminal justice reform — and will stick closer to his own instincts, three people with direct knowledge of the president’s thinking tell Axios.

Behind the scenes: One person who spoke with the president interpreted his thinking this way: “No more of Jared’s woke shit.” Another said Trump has indicated that following Kushner’s advice has harmed him politically.

Aw yeah, woke Jared.

The sources said the president has resolved to stick to his instincts and jettison any policies that go against them, including ambitious police reform.

Trump has made clear he wants to support law enforcement unequivocally, and he won’t do anything that could be seen as undercutting police.

Trump loves force. It’s tough, it’s simple, it’s easy to understand, it’s violent, it’s exciting, it’s fun to watch. He loves it. He’s a simple man.

Axios goes on to say the disagreement with Prince J may be just a passing mood, though.

Trump’s mood this morning: