No more briefings for you

Aug 29th, 2020 5:15 pm | By

About this “We’re not going to brief you on security threats any more, we’ll just send you a few written notes” thing:

The Office of the Director of National Intelligence has informed Senate and House intelligence committees that it will no longer brief Congress on foreign efforts to interfere in the November election, according to congressional Democrats.

In a joint statement released Saturday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Adam Schiff, the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, said Congress had been set for briefings on election security in mid-September. But briefings for members of Congress, including the House and Senate intelligence committees, by the office of National Intelligence Director John Ratcliffe have now been called off, they said.

“This is a shocking abdication of its lawful responsibility to keep the Congress currently informed, and a betrayal of the public’s right to know how foreign powers are trying to subvert our democracy,” Pelosi and Schiff said in the statement.

Well yes, obviously. Can’t they do anything?

The apparent shift in protocol comes as intelligence officials warn that multiple nations may attempt to influence the November election.

Earlier this month, the top counterintelligence official in the U.S. government warned of ongoing interference and influence efforts by China, Iran and Russia.

Just the people we want participating.

But apparently the Dems are just going to issue a statement and leave it at that. I don’t get it.



He knows who he is

Aug 29th, 2020 4:24 pm | By

This Serena Daniari guy is a trip.

If he’d just written the words, they’d still be wrong, but there would be nothing remarkable about them. But no, he included the photo, as if to demonstrate that the reason he knows who he is (i.e. a woman) is because of that photo. What is a woman? Why, someone with eyebrows six inches above her eyes, and a tiny nose, and gigantic bulbous lips – that’s what a woman is. A woman looks more like a blow-up doll than a human being. Also she’s giving the “fuck you” sign.

He’s good at respecting his sisters, too.

One, there’s the obvious rudeness and cruelty, the cheap tattered misogyny, but two there’s the fact that he completely missed the point. Katy Carmichael said makeup and enhancement have nothing to do with being a woman, and his response is “You’re ugly!”

He’s just an abusive angry fool, another mini-trump, one of millions, but the politics of trans ideninny = he’s stunning and brave.



And all other football

Aug 29th, 2020 12:03 pm | By

Speaking of Trump’s efforts to make sure that everyone Catches This Thing as fast as possible, yesterday –

Football! All of football! High school included! Down to the smallest Montana town, it all has come back, NOW.

That’ll get those daily numbers up!

Meanwhile

As revelers at Trump rally on Friday booed suggestions to wear masks, the Washington Post has published a story about the health toll Trump’s campaign events are taking on Secret Service members. From the story:

In the past two months, dozens of Secret Service agents who worked to ensure the security of the president and Vice President Pence at public events have been sickened or sidelined because they were in direct contact with infected people, according to multiple people familiar with the episodes, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe the incidents.

You know, eventually they’ll run out of agents. There’s not an infinite supply of them.

In one instance, five secret service agents had to be swapped out after one agent they were working closely with tested positive for coronavirus. The ongoing infections amongst people closest to Trump represent the latest fallout from the current president’s decision to hold campaign rallies amidst an intensifying global pandemic.

Despite that, Trump has continued to hold large, in-person rallies. His acceptance speech for the RNC on Thursday night drew 1,500, mostly un-masked supporters on the South Lawn on the White House.

Coz evbody gon catch this thing.



Everybody eventually

Aug 29th, 2020 11:45 am | By

This is fine, this is normal, this is nothing to worry about.

CNN White House correspondent Jim Acosta called the maskless crowd at President Donald Trump’s Republican National Convention potential “super-spreaders”  of the coronavirus, and said a senior White House official’s explanation for the lack of social distancing “might blow you away.”

After Trump’s Thursday night RNC speech, Acosta delivered a report from the South Lawn of the White House, where hundreds of maskless revelers had been seated for the festivities. Anchor Wolf Blitzer tossed ti [sic] Acosta by noting “You had about 2,000 people sitting very close, and most of them were not wearing masks.”

“Yeah, Wolf, we not only heard a lot of gaslighting tonight, we possibly saw and witnessed some super-spreading from this event,” Acosta said. “And I talked to a senior White House official earlier this evening about all of these people, hundreds of people sitting side by side in the audience, not wearing masks, and the senior White House official brushed off these concerns about the lack of social distancing at the president’s speech.”

“It’s cool, bro, all part of the plan. We gotta open up the economy, and the football.”

Acosta prefaced the quote by saying “And get this, this quote might blow you away,” then revealed the official told him “Everybody is going to catch this thing eventually.”

“Those are the words coming from a senior White House official about the concerns being raised about this being a possible super-spreader event tonight,” Acosta said.

And even if the official is right, and even if we accept for the sake of argument that that’s ok, it’s still not a good plan to hurry the process up, because we need to avoid overwhelming the hospitals again. The hope for the lockdown was primarily to spread the cases out so that we wouldn’t need field hospitals in parks again.



No more briefings

Aug 29th, 2020 10:50 am | By

Oh, ok, fine. Two months before the election the DNI stops briefing Congress on election security. Brilliant plan.

They might as well be sending out embossed announcements on heavy paper saying “We are helping Trump steal the election, you’re welcome.”

The Office of the Director of National Intelligence has informed the House and Senate Select Committees on Intelligence that it will no longer be briefing on election security issues, a senior administration official told CNN. It will provide written updates, the official said.

The official added that other agencies supporting election security, including the Department of Justice, Department of Defense and Department of Homeland Security, intend to continue briefing Congress.

For now. For a few more hours. Maybe. Expect a memo from each of them shortly.



Duty to inform

Aug 29th, 2020 9:40 am | By

A clinical psychologist argues that we need to set aside the bouquet of armchair diagnoses of Trump and settle on the one overriding diagnosis that captures it all.

I invited Dr. Greenwood, who is a clinical psychologist and founder of The Washington Center For Cognitive Therapy, to answer a few questions. In addition to his presence o[n] Medium, he has just launched a new website, dutytoinform.org. You can follow him on Twitter at @dutytoinform.

The first question is why do we need one overarching diagnosis.

Mental health professionals have offered several diagnoses of the president. They have done so usually to warn the public about his psychiatric vulnerabilities and dangerousness. They want to engage the public in a serious argument. And to be fair, the president does appear to meet diagnostic criteria for more than one disorder. However, by offering multiple diagnoses of the president, the impact and understanding of a particular diagnosis is compromised. Information overload kicks in, and people tune out.

Also, a more severe diagnosis deserves to be emphasized.

And that more severe diagnosis is…dude’s a psychopath.

The first core trait of the Psychopath is the “Drive to Dominate.” How does that manifest in Trump’s behavior in life, business and politics? I’m guessing it also explains his attitude to Black Lives Matter protesters?

Yes, the drive to dominate is one of the driving forces of the psychopath. They cannot lovingly connect with others, and can only relate to others through the gear of domination. “Winning,” as Trump endlessly repeats, is everything. Nestled within this cluster of traits are arrogance, deceitfulness, and attention-seeking.

And there’s nothing in column B. Literally nothing.

Trump’s bandwidth of emotions are limited to those associated with his drive to dominate others and prevail over his critics: anger, contempt, jealousy, feeling thwarted, mistrust, glee. These are the emotions depicted in the well-researched biographies of the man and his autobiographical writings. He is devoid of the more tender emotions that could engender solidarity, trust, or empathy.

That’s the creepy bit. That’s what makes it impossible to ignore him.

And it’s what his millions of fans like about him. That’s a fact about the US now, and it’s one we’ll never live down.

The second core trait is “Remorselessness.” Again, how does that apply to Trump?

Remorselessness is perhaps the most consequential trait in the man. Psychopaths appear to be born with brain abnormalities that lead to a deficit in conscience and empathy. Our conscience—that inner voice of “I should”—motivates us to meet our obligations and commitments to both those we love and the broader community. When this fundamental concern for others is missing, what’s left is a focus on immediate, egocentric gains.

And a terrible terrible person.



Guest post: Constant reminders

Aug 28th, 2020 4:35 pm | By

Originally a comment by Sastra on Merfinks.

Frankly, I wouldn’t be surprised if there were indeed suicide threats or attempts when Rowling came out as gender critical. Such wailing and gnashing of teeth, fan clubs panicking, and breathless article after article expressing shock and concern over the effect on the most vulnerable, most marginalized, most suicidal group in the world.

There’s not a teenager out there who isn’t well aware that transgender people routinely kill themselves if not accepted as “who they know they are.” They’re reminded of that over and over, it’s drummed into their heads by Tumblr and Twitter and Tavistock and all the handwringing social media and organizations throwing out statistics because this is a real, live possibility for every … single … one of them.

Mental health professionals think that’s a very wise thing to do. Young adults aren’t susceptible to suggestion, or social contagion. Psychologists and therapists agree. Warn teenagers about the sorts of things that are likely to make them throw their life away. Keep them on their toes. It’s good.

No. Not really. Doing that is bad. If there really were suicide attempts not just following, but because of Rowling’s statements, I wouldn’t blame Rowling. She didn’t set them up.



Madison Square Garden polling station

Aug 28th, 2020 4:30 pm | By

Now that’s some player activism.

In the aftermath of player protests across various professional sports leagues, the Board of Elections in the City of New York announced Friday that Madison Square Garden will serve as a polling site for the upcoming general election.

And it’s not just the aftermath; it’s what the players asked for.

Manhattan voters who are assigned to Madison Square Garden can vote there on Election Day, Nov. 3, as well as an early voting period from Oct. 24 until Nov. 1, with hours varying. The polling site will be located at MSG’s Chase Square at the 7th Avenue entrance between 31st and 33rd Streets.

The news comes after a three-day period of social activism from athletes across North America, which began when the Milwaukee Bucks decided not to play their NBA playoff game Wednesday.

Many teams followed their lead, with all NBA playoff games being postponed on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. The NHL postponed its playoff games on Thursday and Friday, while the WNBA did not play on Wednesday or Thursday. MLS canceled most of its games on Wednesday, and while MLB didn’t have any full day of postponement, a total of 10 games were postponed due to individual teams protesting.

The player strikes came in response to the Aug. 23 police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin and were aimed at addressing systemic racism, social injustice and police brutality.

Players from both the NBA and NHL have agreed to return to play Saturday, with the NBA’s Player Association negotiating terms that “focused on a broad range of issues, including increasing access to voting, promoting civic engagement, and advocating for meaningful police and criminal justice reform.”

So, yeah. Go teams.

Part of the agreement between the NBPA and the league stated that, “In every city where the league franchise owns and controls the arena property, team governors will work with local elections officials to convert the facility into a voting location for the 2020 general election to allow for a safe in-person voting option for communities vulnerable to COVID.”

Well done.



Merfinks

Aug 28th, 2020 2:54 pm | By

I was alerted by this.

So, bristling, I read. They really do say that.

Today, J.K.Rowling re-stated her position on transgender lives. We have previously reached out to her both publicly and privately, offering a calm conversation around the issues she has raised and today, we sent a further email to her team, renewing that offer. We are yet to receive a response.

How sanctimonious that is, how passive-aggressive, how entitled, how intrusive. Yes, Rowling has nothing better to do than “have a conversation” with the damn fools (or fool) of Mermaids. If they offer she has to respond.

As part of that email, we have disclosed something we hoped never to say. We say it now with permission from those involved. Without giving personal detail, without betraying confidences, we must represent the seriousness of the situation. We are aware through our work with families that there have been cases of self-harm and even attempted suicide following J.K.Rowling’s statements and the public response on social media and in the press. Surely this must cause us all to pause and question the way young trans lives are being debated in public. 

Note, first of all, that “following” is not the same as “because of.” I wonder if a lawyer told them to phrase it that way, or if they’re just naturally sneaky.

Note also this oily insinuating crap about “lives” – transgender lives, young trans lives. It’s another branch of the bullying. Lives shmives, the point is the ideology, the truth claims, the doctrine, the bullshit we are told to believe and repeat and endorse and force on everyone else.

No movement is perfect, no movement can succeed without evolution, but history is kind to those who stand up for their rights.

What? What does that mean? The Proud Boys see themselves as standing up for their rights. Nazis saw themselves that way. Men’s rights activists see themselves that way. If “history” is “kind” to them it will probably be in a world where Donald Trump is a saint and Ivanka Trump is in her seventh term as president.

We can all look back in admiration at those brave, radical people deserving of statues, who stood against racism, homophobia, misogyny and all forms of prejudice, all the while threatened by the famous, rich and powerful of their day. 

Who’s we? Who’s all? Lots of people don’t look back in admiration at feminists and anti-racists and LGB rights activists. This is Whig history on steroids.



Not a real activist

Aug 28th, 2020 11:36 am | By

Sadistic bully “Jessica” Yaniv is suing those women all over again. Devika Desai in the National Post:

Trans activist Jessica Yaniv has filed a civil suit against three female beauticians for close to $12,000, almost a year after a human rights tribunal ruled against her complaints against the same women. 

Documents published to the British Columbia Court services website on Aug. 26 show that Yaniv — who legally goes by Jessica Simpson — filed a suit against Sandeep Benipal, Marcia DaSilva and Sukhdhip Hehar for $11,800. 

Props to the National Post for assigning the story to a woman with an Indian name. Seriously: nicely done.

Little is known about the reason behind the civil suit, but this isn’t the first time Yaniv has attempted to bring legal proceedings against the women in question.

The tribunal member Devyn Cousineau dismissed Yaniv’s complaints in October 2019, finding Yaniv’s testimony to be “disingenuous and self-serving” and said that the complaints were filed with “improper motives or in bad faith.”  

Yaniv, according to the ruling, “targeted small businesses, manufactured the conditions for a human rights complaint, and then leveraged that complaint to pursue a financial settlement from parties who were unsophisticated and unlikely to mount a proper defence,” the ruling read.

Furthermore, in many of her complaints, Cousineau ruled that Yaniv was “motivated to punish racialized and immigrant women based on her perception that certain ethnic groups, namely South Asian and Asian communities are ‘taking over’ and advancing an agenda hostile to the interests of LGBTQ+ people.”

The ruling ordered Yaniv to pay $2,000 to Hehar, Benipal and DaSilva for“improper conduct” including using human rights law as a “weapon” for “extortion.”

And the National Post assigns Devika Desai to write it up. Nyah nyah nyah.

Yaniv is an absolute pustule.

H/t YNnB



Respect for our dignity and humanity

Aug 28th, 2020 11:22 am | By
Respect for our dignity and humanity

A tweet four hours ago.

And one hour ago.



God’s hand is on him

Aug 28th, 2020 10:14 am | By

Ok but why?

… according to Sarah Posner, the author of Unholy: Why White Evangelicals Worship at the Altar of Donald Trump, Falwell’s influence has been overestimated.

“His fall does not change anything. Trump has built relationships with the evangelical base and the religious right leadership in Washington, and they see him as their saviour – God’s hand is on him, he has come to save America at this critical juncture,” she said.

But why? Why? Even if you accept the God thing and the hand thing and the saving thing, why would God put the hand on Trump? Of all people? As some kind of sadistic joke? Because that’s about the only way it makes any sense.

Why wouldn’t god put the hand on a good person?

What can possibly be the point of a god putting the hand on a monster of selfishness and cruelty and sheer vulgarity like Trump? I can certainly see a point to putting the hand on someone outwardly insignificant or even repellent, but I fail to see the point of doing it to someone who is evil and monstrous in every way and all the way down.

Also he’s filthy rich, also he’s filthy rich via corruption and theft and not paying workers, so…? What’s the lesson here?

I know, there’s some perverse prodigal son type formula according to which the worse he is the bigger the redemption or some such shit, but I spit on it. At that rate god’s hand must have been on Hitler and Stalin, so I say it’s spinach and I say the hell with it.



He doesn’t care

Aug 28th, 2020 9:56 am | By

Pompeo is evil.

News from Congress, where the House foreign affairs committee has announced the opening of contempt proceedings against Mike Pompeo, Donald Trump’s secretary of state who, as it happens, gave a hugely controversial speech to the Republican national convention from Israel on Wednesday night.

The battle between the Democratic-controlled committee and Pompeo is a long one, as the secretary of state refuses to co-operate with the panel as it investigates his conduct in office, including regarding administration approaches to Ukraine for dirt on Joe Biden, the approaches which led to Trump’s impeachment.

He has no right to refuse. It’s outrageoous.

In a statement, committee chair Eliot Engel said: “From Mr Pompeo’s refusal to cooperate with the impeachment inquiry to his willingness to bolster a Senate Republican-led smear against the president’s political rivals to his speech to the RNC which defied his own guidance and possibly the law, he has demonstrated alarming disregard for the laws and rules governing his own conduct and for the tools the constitution provides to prevent government corruption.

“He seems to think the office he holds, the Department he runs, the personnel he oversees, and the taxpayer dollars that pay for all of it are there for his personal and political benefit.”

Just like Trump.

Pompeo doesn’t care.

There is a general sense among former foreign service officials that the secretary of state, who was a stickler for congressional oversight when he was in the House of Representatives, does not care about it at all, and is increasingly focused on a presidential run in 2024.

Rori Kramer, former deputy assistant secretary of state in the bureau of legislative affairs, said of Engel’s announcement: “That’s wonderful but there’s not as much teeth as there used to be with congressional oversight.

“It’s really shocking. Four years ago, it would have been completely bizarro Twilight Zone that Congress could subpoena you and hold you in contempt, and the answer of the administration would be: I don’t care.

“The people who work for the people who say we don’t care about oversight and then his senior leadership and/or political appointees also don’t follow the rules and then authoritarian dictators and other countries also see that, and continue not to follow the rules. And it’s a race to the bottom.”

Evil in all directions.



For her work with her children’s charity

Aug 28th, 2020 9:17 am | By

The Guardian reports on Rowling v Kennedy more reasonably than it usually reports on trans issues, but it still can’t keep its thumb entirely off the scale.

JK Rowling is returning the Ripple of Hope award given to her last year by the Robert F Kennedy Human Rights (RFKHR) organisation after its president, Kennedy’s daughter, criticised her views on transgender issues.

The award, which is for people who have shown a “commitment to social change”, was presented to Rowling in December for her work with her children’s charity, Lumos…

But earlier this month, Kerry Kennedy, a lawyer and president of RFKHR, put out a statement describing her “dismay” over what “deeply troubling transphobic tweets and statements” made by the Harry Potter author.

In early June, the author wrote a series of comments on Twitter laying out her views on gender identity, including one that said: “If sex isn’t real, the lived reality of women globally is erased. I know and love trans people, but erasing the concept of sex removes the ability of many to meaningfully discuss their lives.” These comments were condemned by LGBT charities, as well as several actors who have worked in the Harry Potter franchise. Rowling then wrote a highly personal essay revealing her experience of domestic abuse and sexual assault, in which she argued that trans women who have not undergone hormone therapy or surgical transition should not have access to single-sex spaces.

See? There’s the thumb on the scale. “These comments were condemned by LGBT charities” and so on – but they were welcomed by others. But the Guardian somehow can’t be bothered to mention that.

However they do then quote Rowling’s response to Kennedy for four paragraphs, giving her the last word, so…they’re improving. It’s quite possible that this is because of Rowling.



Keep it

Aug 28th, 2020 8:46 am | By

People on Twitter are praising Rowling’s integrity and courage for returning the RFK award after Kerry Kennedy saw fit to issue a statement calling her transphobic.

I think Rowling has bags of integrity and courage but I don’t think integrity and courage were required to return that award in the circumstances. I think the difficulty was in not telling Kerry Kennedy that she should have the award dropped on her from a great height.

Or maybe that’s just me.

But I doubt it. I think when people publicly call you an evil person, on grounds that you know to be deeply mistaken and deluded and in fact destructive, it doesn’t take a whole lot of will power or integrity or courage to tell them to go fuck themselves.



I’ll tell you who’s “deeply troubling”

Aug 27th, 2020 5:31 pm | By

A new consignment of evil crap. Kerry Kennedy is president of a human rights outfit named after her father Robert Kennedy, the nepotistic Attorney General in his brother’s administration. Earlier this month she issued A Statement on…JK Rowling. You know what it says.

Writer J.K. Rowling is best known as the author of the Harry Potter books. In 2005, she founded Lumos, an international nonprofit NGO with a mission to move children worldwide out of orphanages and institutions and into loving family care by 2050. For her dedicated work on behalf of children, she received the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Ripple of Hope Award in December 2019.

But! But, sisters and brothers – she committed wrongthink! She must be SHUNNED. She must be shunned especially by anyone who has made the mistake of bestowing an honor on her in the past.

So Kerry Kennedy proceeds to talk shit about JK Rowling.

Over the course of June 2020—LGBTQ Pride Month—and much to my dismay, J.K. Rowling posted deeply troubling transphobic tweets and statements… Almost a week later, she wrote a series of tweets that had the effect of degrading trans people’s lived experiences…I have spoken with J.K. Rowling to express my profound disappointment that she has chosen to use her remarkable gifts to create a narrative that diminishes the identity of trans and nonbinary people, undermining the validity and integrity of the entire transgender community—one that disproportionately suffers from violence, discrimination, harassment, and exclusion and, as a result, experiences high rates of suicide, suicide attempts, homelessness, and mental and bodily harm

And much more in the same stale mindless formulaic vein.

So naturally Rowling had no choice but to give the medal and award back. She too issued a statement.

Kerry Kennedy, President of Robert F Kennedy Human Rights, recently felt it necessary to publish a statement denouncing my views on RFKHR’s website.  The statement incorrectly implied that I was transphobic, and that I am responsible for harm to trans people.  As a longstanding donor to LGBT charities and a supporter of trans people’s right to live free of persecution, I absolutely refute the accusation that I hate trans people or wish them ill, or that standing up for the rights of women is wrong, discriminatory, or incites harm or violence to the trans community.

RFKHR has stated that there is no conflict between the current radical trans rights movement and the rights of women. The thousands of women who’ve got in touch with me disagree, and, like me, believe this clash of rights can only be resolved if more nuance is permitted in the debate.

In solidarity with those who have contacted me but who are struggling to make their voices heard, and because of the very serious conflict of views between myself and RFKHR, I feel I have no option but to return the Ripple of Hope Award bestowed upon me last year.  I am deeply saddened that RFKHR has felt compelled to adopt this stance, but no award or honour, no matter my admiration for the person for whom it was named, means so much to me that I would forfeit the right to follow the dictates of my own conscience.

What an absolutely filthy thing for Kennedy to do.



Four years of the unthinkable

Aug 27th, 2020 5:05 pm | By

The White House is plastered with campaign signs at this moment.



The thisness of thatness, the thatness of thisness

Aug 27th, 2020 4:52 pm | By

Via Jane Clare Jones, a truly fancy piece of academic thinkery.

The Trans*-Ness of Blackness, the Blackness of Trans*-Ness

The essay thinks radically differently about the concepts of black and trans*. Trans* and black thus denote poetic, para-ontological forces that are only tangentially, and ultimately arbitrarily, related to bodies said to be black or transgender. That is to say, they are differently inflected names for an an original lawlessness that marks an escape from confinement and a besidedness to ontology. Manifesting in the modern world differently as race and gender fugitivity, black and trans*, though pointed at by bodies that identify as black or trans*, precede and provide the foundational condition for those fugitive identificatory demarcations. The author seeks to demonstrate the ways in which trans* is black and black is trans*. In what ways, and to what extent, is there a “blackness” present within “trans*-ness,” and vice versa? What is the effect of these analytics? This essay hopes to address these questions but also leave them suspended in black/trans* liminality.

Para-ontological, you see – that means no one can say it’s bullshit, or wrong, or badly argued, or evidence-free, or a joke. It’s para-ontological, you unsophisticated fools.

These here “poetic, para-ontological forces” are only tangentially and arbitrarily related to bodies said to be black or transgender, which also means that no one can say this is a crock of shit. This is how you do scholarship: you say it’s nonsense right at the outset but you say it in pseudo-academic language, and if the journal is fatuous enough to take that at face value, hey presto! You can just blather for 20 pages and the job is done.

… they are differently inflected names for an an original lawlessness that marks an escape from confinement and a besidedness to ontology.

We’ve got lawlessness here! We’re escaping confinement! We’re settling down beside ontology.

I especially love the final sentence.

This essay hopes to address these questions but also leave them suspended in black/trans* liminality.

Aw yeah don’t we all. This piece of writing hopes to say something true and interesting, but in case it fails, it also wants to dangle over an abyss of whatwhatwhatwhat?



Fox’s turn to advocating right-wing vigilantism

Aug 27th, 2020 12:10 pm | By

Fox takes the next step:

Amid a quasi-fascist rant Wednesday night, Fox News host Tucker Carlson responded to murder charges against a pro-Trump teenager who crossed state lines and shot to death two protesters in Kenosha, Wisconsin, by asking, “How shocked are we that 17-year-olds with rifles decided they had to maintain order when no one else would?” Several other Fox personalities have similarly downplayed or seemingly excused the deadly Tuesday night confrontation. 

Carlson says it:

Fox’s turn toward advocating violent right-wing vigilantism is a horrifying but natural evolution for the network. Its personalities have spent the last several months recklessly issuing dire warnings to their viewers, telling them that their lives are in jeopardy from racial justice protesters and that the Democratic leaders of cities facing civil unrest are refusing to protect them. This fearmongering has repeatedly inspired President Donald Trump, an avid Fox viewer, to dump more fuel on the fires.

Trump is an avid Fox viewer to the exclusion of everything else. Fox is his only source, his only entertainment, his only daily briefing, his only education, his only “information.” His ignorance is infinite, and all there is other than the void, is Fox.

That’s bad.

Throughout this period, Fox has been laser-focused on finding instances of violence, blaming them on the protesters, and castigating Democratic mayors and governors for failing to stop them. The network has bombarded its viewers — including the president — with images of burning buildings and civil unrest. At times using weeks-old footage and other misinformation tactics, Fox personalities have inflated the scope of the damage to depict a nation on the brink, denouncing the supposed threat posed by “antifa” agitatorsBlack Lives Matter activists, and statue-toppling vigilantes — even demanding that violent protesters be treated as “domestic terrorists.” And they have sought to use that demagoguery to shore up Trump’s faltering campaign, warning that civilization itself will be on the ballot in November.

The president, whose administration is heavily influenced by Carlson’s show, has been watching. He has triggered escalating violence by trying to push Fox’s narratives for his own political benefit, first with angry Fox live tweets lashing out at protesters and the Democratic officeholders he claimed were coddling them, then with a speech at Mount Rushmore attacking “the violent mayhem we have seen in the streets of cities that are run by liberal Democrats,” and finally with a “law and order” strategy that went around those officeholders by sending heavily armed federal paramilitaries into an American city. 

We’re being governed by the corpse of Rupert Murdoch.



A bold swipe

Aug 27th, 2020 9:40 am | By

Speaking of clueless privilege and entitlement and disdain for everyone not-self – Jared Kushner steps up.

Jared Kushner, the son of a billionaire whose only professional achievements have been handed to him by members of his family, has taken a bold swipe at NBA players for their wealth and privilege. In an interview with CNBC’s Squawk Box Thursday morning, President Trump’s son-in-law and White House senior adviser was asked about NBA players’ decision to boycott playoff games in protest over the police shooting of Jacob Blake. “The NBA players are very fortunate that they have the financial position where they’re able to take a night off work without having to have the consequences to themselves financially,” said Kushner, whose family wealth has been estimated at well over $1.5 billion. “They have that luxury, so that’s great.”

This is Jared Kushner talking – a guy who, as the Daily Beast points out, has no perceptible talents or skills or accomplishments or intelligence, sneering at people who do. This is colossal nepotist and grifter Jared Kushner, bad landlord, calling other people “very fortunate” to be able to make a political statement.