Posts Tagged ‘ Trump ’

Bad hombres down there

Feb 2nd, 2017 9:42 am | By

Then there’s the part about how he blustered at Mexico some more.

President Donald Trump warned in a phone call with his Mexican counterpart that he was ready to send U.S. troops to stop “bad hombres down there” unless the Mexican military does more to control them, according to an excerpt of a transcript of the conversation obtained by The Associated Press.

The excerpt of the call did not detail who exactly Trump considered “bad hombres,” nor did it make clear the tone and context of the remark, made in a Friday morning phone call between the leaders. It also did not contain Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto’s response. Mexico denies that Trump’s remarks were threatening.

The White House … Read the rest

Then he slammed the phone down

Feb 2nd, 2017 9:21 am | By

Donnie from Queens is confused again. (I do wish someone would speak to him. I wish someone would give him a little guidebook to study. Flash cards. A short video. Something.) He thinks we’re at war with Australia. No no no, Donnie, Australia is an ally. Can you say “ally”? “Al” rhymes with pal – “ly” rhymes with lie (your favorite thing!): ally. Australia is an ally. That means they’re on our side. We’re not at war with them.

It should have been one of the most congenial calls for the new commander in chief — a conversation with the leader of Australia, one of America’s staunchest allies, at the end of a triumphant week.

Instead, President Trump

Read the rest

National Prayer Oatmeal

Feb 2nd, 2017 8:53 am | By

Where to begin…

Trump made his debut at a ludicrous institution called “the National Prayer Breakfast” – which is obviously something secular governments should ignore. He covered all the bases by attending the theocratic nightmare, and then insulting it and everyone present by talking about…Arnold Schwarzenegger and Celebrity Apprentice? I don’t know, that sounds like a joke, but the Post is reporting it as fact.

The comments were an unusual start to the bipartisan breakfast. But they were not so unusual for a president who prides himself on putting on a good show and garnering good ratings.

He has taken Schwarzenegger to task in the past for low ratings and accused the former California governor of siding with

Read the rest

Trump understands nothing

Feb 1st, 2017 4:48 pm | By

The Independent has the transcript and video of Trump’s miniature “speech” on Black History Month. The combination of ignorance, idiocy and narcissism is like a blow between the eyes.

Well, this is black history month, so this is our little breakfast, our little get-together. And just a few notes. During this month, we honour the tremendous history of the African-Americans throughout our country. Throughout the world, if you really think about it, right. And their story is one of unimaginable sacrifice, hard work, and faith in America.

Stop right there. No. That is exactly wrong. Their story is not one of “sacrifice.” Sacrifice entails agency and choice. If I hit you over the head and take all your stuff, that’s … Read the rest

Milwaukee to Donnie from Queens: stay home

Feb 1st, 2017 11:20 am | By

Hmmm, so it turns out that Trump, friend of manufacturing companies and friend of Wisconsin, is not all that welcome at the Milwaukee Harley-Davidson plant after all. Why not? It’s nothing personal, it’s just that he has these…critics.

An administration official told CNN that President Trump was set to visit a Harley-Davidson factory in Milwaukee on Thursday, but the trip was called off after the company decided it didn’t want to deal with a planned protest.

The White House announced the visit to Milwaukee on Monday, but did not give a specific location. Technical Sergeant Meghan Skrepenski, with the 128th Air Refueling Wing of the Air National Guard in Milwaukee, confirmed to the AP on Tuesday that the trip was

Read the rest

Many for-profit universities went under

Feb 1st, 2017 11:10 am | By

The Times’s daily Trump briefing includes an item that should not fly under the radar.

It also turns a sarcastic eye on Trump’s name-check of Frederick Douglass:

Trump: That Frederick Douglass “has done an amazing job.”

Yes, that Frederick Douglass, former slave, abolitionist and statesman who died in 1895.

Meeting with African-American supporters at the White House on Wednesday, the president let it be known that Mr. Douglass, an important figure in American history, had come to his attention.

“Frederick Douglass is an example of somebody who has done an amazing job and is being recognized more and more, I notice,” Mr. Trump said. “Harriet Tubman, Rosa Parks and millions more black Americans who made America what it is today.

Read the rest

Trump took the occasion

Feb 1st, 2017 10:44 am | By

But wait – can Trump really be a racist? After all, today he was at a meeting to mark the start of African-American History Month, so how can he possibly be a racist when he did that?

He was awesome, too.

Sitting in the Roosevelt Room on Wednesday for what was billed as a listening session to mark the start of African-American History Month, President Donald Trump took the occasion to once again criticize the media for covering him unfairly while also praising famed abolitionist Frederick Douglass as “somebody who has done an amazing job and is being recognized more and more.”

“Last month we celebrated the life of Reverend Martin Luther King Jr., whose incredible example is unique

Read the rest

Trump bans bad people

Feb 1st, 2017 10:15 am | By

Trump’s latest official statement on Twitter. This is the president of the United States.

I guess he wants us all to understand exactly how racist he really is. He thinks the way to keep “bad people” out of “country” is to close the doors on everyone from seven majority-Muslim nations. He’s saying all Syrians, Iraqis, Iranians, Yemenis, Sudanese, Somalis, Libyans are bad people.

The essence of racism, in one little tweet.… Read the rest

Basics of international law for imbeciles

Jan 31st, 2017 5:58 pm | By

Merkel had to explain the Geneva Convention to Trump when they talked on the phone Saturday.

Donald Trump’s executive order to halt travel from seven Muslim-majority countries – Iraq, Syria, Iran, Yemen, Sudan, Libya and Somalia – has provoked a wave of concern and condemnation from international leaders and politicians.

A spokesman for Angela Merkel said the German chancellor regretted Trump’s decision to ban citizens of certain countries from entering the US, adding that she had “explained” the obligations of the refugee convention to the new president in a phone call on Saturday.

“The chancellor regrets the US government’s entry ban against refugees and the citizens of certain countries,” Merkel’s spokesman Steffen Seibert said in a statement.

“She is convinced

Read the rest

Two for one

Jan 31st, 2017 4:40 pm | By

Trump’s other stupid item yesterday – signing an order saying if you want a regulation you have to give up two existing regulations. Spoken like a true market fundamentalist, who just assumes that regulation is inherently bad. Right. Those busybodies who made it impossible to sell Thalidomide; what were they thinking? Regulations against fraud, pollution, exploitation – all a caTAAAAAStrophe, if you’re Pinhead Trump.

It’s hard to overstate just how silly and arbitrary this notion is. It’s sloganeering, not public policy – but we’d all pay for it if such an absurd vision of regulatory reform actually became reality.

It isn’t hard to see how Trump’s catchphrase would play out in the real world, for the worse. Say an industrial

Read the rest

Softcore Holocaust denial

Jan 31st, 2017 1:35 pm | By

Deborah Lipstadt was in Amsterdam for a screening of Denial when her phone lit up with the news about Trump’s Holocaust Memorial Day statement that conspicuously did not mention Jews. At first she thought it was just a clumsy mistake…but then she no longer did.

I quickly learned that the White House had released a statement for Holocaust Remembrance Day that did not mention Jews or anti-Semitism. Instead it bemoaned the “innocent victims.” The internet was buzzing and many people were fuming. Though no fan of Trump, I chalked it up as a rookie mistake by a new administration busy issuing a slew of executive orders. Someone had screwed up. I refused to get agitated, and counseled my growing

Read the rest

Guest post: Send them back to their crappy reality television show

Jan 31st, 2017 1:21 pm | By

Originally a comment by AJ Milne on An independent judiciary.

That custom thing, I think that’s just everywhere with established norms. As democracies age, they work out what works, spot the boundaries they know they can’t cross. It doesn’t always get written down, exactly, or not in the law.

And that’s why there has to be a heavy political price for going anywhere near them. People who try to game the system, effectively, by arguing, well, technically you never said! Even if it’s like playing chess and suddenly saying I’m gonna colour your queen black and call it mine… Because nothing technically said I couldn’t.

I worry that this is in part the price of people being (I think, … Read the rest

Bannon wanted it this way

Jan 31st, 2017 12:42 pm | By

Dan Drezner raises the question: was The Ban incompetence or malevolence?

He starts with saying it was Bannon’s baby, which seems to be generally accepted. Next, The Ban is a disaster. Then he points out that Bannon is definitely not stupid. Agreed…so I wonder what it can be like for him having to baby and cajole the amazingly stupid Trump.

So why did not-stupid Bannon perpetrate a disaster?

The most plausible story to assume in this instance is incompetence. Ordinarily, when the federal government does something stupid, it’s best to assume incompetence rather than malevolence. This is Bannon’s first week in a White House job and, like most other really smart people who lack high-level government experience, there will

Read the rest

An independent judiciary

Jan 31st, 2017 11:51 am | By

Matthew Miller was the Justice Department’s public affairs boffin for a couple of years in the Obama administration. He explains why firing an Attorney General is not such a brilliant plan.

Under long-standing traditions in administrations of both parties, the attorney general is charged with enforcing the law free from political interference from the White House. This standard of independence, unique among Cabinet members, is designed to insulate questions of law from inappropriate political pressure, and presidents and attorneys general who have violated that standard have typically paid a grave price for doing so.

I guess no one explained that to Trump? Maybe no one who works for him is even aware of it?

It’s really not a good … Read the rest

The overnights

Jan 31st, 2017 10:59 am | By

A person can’t have a life these days, if all these things are going to be happening after she firmly closes the laptop for the day and tries to think about other things. Donnie from Queens, do me a favor and take the evenings off.

But I shouldn’t complain. Rachel Maddow had to do a second broadcast, at midnight her time.

So, the Times on the firing of Acting Attorney General Sally Yates:

Ms. Yates’s order was a remarkable rebuke by a government official to a sitting president, and it recalled the so-called Saturday Night Massacre in 1973, when President Richard M. Nixon fired his attorney general and deputy attorney general for refusing to dismiss the special prosecutor in

Read the rest

Black ops

Jan 30th, 2017 4:48 pm | By

Kate Brannen at Foreign Policy says it’s become clear that it’s Bannon who’s running the show.

Even before he was given a formal seat on the National Security Council’s “principals committee” this weekend by President Donald Trump, Bannon was calling the shots and doing so with little to no input from the National Security Council staff, according to an intelligence official who asked not to be named out of fear of retribution.

That seems healthy. A week in, and people are afraid of retribution, and the guy calling the shots is a guy who built a new career on racism.

“He is running a cabal, almost like a shadow NSC,” the official said. He described a work environment where

Read the rest


Jan 30th, 2017 3:35 pm | By

Is Trump planning to do an anti-LGB executive order? Spicer refuses to deny it.

Is Donald Trump getting ready to take executive action that would screw over his treasured LGBTQ constituency—the very citizens he promised to protect on the campaign trail? It was a charge that White House press secretary Sean Spicer couldn’t deny during Monday’s briefing, writes Towleroad.

Spicer responded to a question from Chris Johnson at the Washington Blade at today’s briefing.

Said Spicer:

“I’m not getting ahead of the executive orders that we may or may not issue. There’s a lot of executive orders, a lot of things the president has talked about and will continue to fulfill but we have nothing on that front now…”

Read the rest

A nine-point checklist for narcissism

Jan 30th, 2017 12:36 pm | By

To make it all worse, there’s every reason to think Trump is psychologically, intellectually, and emotionally incapable of learning from failures or paying attention to criticism. Goldwater “Rule” or no Goldwater rule, it’s hard to deny that he’s a Malignant Narcissist. Malignant Narcissists don’t listen to no stinkin criticism.

Until recently, it was illegal for psychologists to assess public figures and talk to journalists about their findings. But this rule has now changed, and mental health experts are speaking out about Trump.

Ah no. It wasn’t illegal – how could it have been? No, it was a professional rule, and I gather that professionals considered it pretty binding, but that’s very far from “illegal.” At any rate the extreme … Read the rest

Tell him you have other plans that day

Jan 30th, 2017 11:47 am | By

Shame on Theresa May.

(I’ve never liked that phrase – “shame on ___.” But I’m afraid it’s going to become indispensable in our new reality.)

She is refusing to tell Donald Trump to forget about that state visit. Well she damn well should tell him that.

US President Donald Trump’s planned state visit to the UK will go ahead no matter how many people sign a petition against it, Prime Minister Theresa May said on Monday.

More than a million people have so far called for the visit to be cancelled.

The petition, if accepted by Parliament, will force MPs to debate the motion: “Prevent Donald Trump from making a State Visit to the United Kingdom.”

However, Theresa

Read the rest

Missing: checks and balances

Jan 30th, 2017 11:18 am | By

Remember the soothing murmurs before and even after the election that “checks and balances” would prevent Trump from getting away with authoritarian excesses? I do.

The Times points out the obvious fact that there don’t seem to be any.

By circumventing normal practices for formulating policies and their execution, the White House has created still-swirling confusion about whom the order targets and how it will be enforced. There is also ambiguity about the legality of the order, which the White House calls extreme vetting but which critics call a Muslim ban, and about how court challenges, already underway, will proceed.

For many abroad, the ban raised questions about how an American president could undertake such an action suddenly and

Read the rest