Sunday in the Sun + 11 June 2017

Sunday in the Sun logo

The gnews continues to pour in at such an astonishing rate, yet despite all the sunshine it still feels like it’s raining all the time. Raining pure, unadulterated bullshit. Or infant poo-poo, if this recent image of Herr Drumpf is to be believed:

Drumpf 6

The photo reminds me of my son – when he was about six months old. His face would scrunch up just like this, and he’d make little fists and shake them, too – when he was filling his diaper with a fresh deposit of nice, brown poo. Of course, I’m not the only one who thinks Drumpf is a toddler…no, the GOP does too. Don’t believe me? Well, read this for their latest talking points. Or, then again, maybe Herr Drumpf reminds you more and more of this fellow:

hitler 6

Uncanny resemblance, don’t you think? Although I reckon Herr Hitler’s fingers were a bit longer, maybe Donald should try a mustache? Just to complete the effect???

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So, I understand Vegas is now taking bets on Drumpf’s impeachment? Nah, ain’t gonna happen. And of course, you know why? With a solid Republican majority in congress, and all but one of them (er, that chap who ran in 2008 with Sarah Palin) are of the ‘Party before Country’ denomination, so don’t count on that happening anytime soon.

The gnews this week has been dominated by former FBI Director James Comey’s testimony on Capital (or is that Capitol?) Hill (e.g., P J O’Rourke’s Parliament of Whores), and what a show it was. A splendid diversion was had by one and all, that much is certain. I’ll not bother to recount all the spin and propaganda that spewed forth from this circus of the grotesque – other than to give mention to what I consider the most important thing of the entire charade.

First up, to the business at hand. While all the smoke and mirrors had us occupied today, House Republicans pulled another fast one…they basically rewrote all the laws enacted after the financial crisis of 2008, giving banks a free hand to do it all over again (hey, what did you expect?) and, as the Senate is unable to get the votes necessary to overhaul the ACA (aka ObamaCare), they apparently don’t want to do anything other than let the ACA fail.

This is, apparently, Mitch McConnell’s idea of leadership. Give the banks what they want and screw the people (assuming the people don’t really need viable health insurance). Ah, well, Party before Country apparently generates better fund raising results, so sleep tight, Mitch.

One of the things liberal Democrats have gotten wrong in the run up to Comey’s testimony is simply this: the president can tell the FBI whom to investigate, and he can tell the FBI when to stop investigating. Say what? If you’ve been watching MsNBC for the last few months, this rather salient feature of executive branch legerdemain might have escaped you, so read this one before you jump on the obstruction of justice bandwagon.

Of course, nailing Drumpf on RussiaGate may be about as fun as trying to nail Jello to a wall, but that doesn’t mean others in his inner circle are safe. No sir, ole Jeff Sessions apparently hasn’t been real truthful about his contacts with Russia:

Washington (CNN)Former FBI Director James Comey told senators in a closed hearing this afternoon that Attorney General Jeff Sessions may have had a third interaction with Russia’s ambassador to the US, according to people familiar with the briefing.

The information is based in part on Russian-to-Russian intercepts where the meeting was discussed, three sources familiar with the information tell CNN. But the sources said it is possible the ambassador, Sergey Kislyak, was exaggerating the extent of the encounter. CNN previously reported exclusively that congressional investigators are examining whether Sessions had an additional private meeting with Russia’s ambassador during the presidential campaign, according to Republican and Democratic Hill sources and intelligence officials briefed on the investigation. from CNN
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Of course, the really big news comes from the “other side” of the Atlantic (hey, cut me some  slack…), where Theresa May is up to her testicles in alligators…

Prime Minister Theresa May faced calls to quit on Friday after her election gamble to win a stronger mandate backfired, throwing British politics into turmoil and potentially delaying the start of Brexit negotiations. With no clear winner likely to emerge from Thursday’s vote, a wounded May vowed to provide stability, while her Labour rival Jeremy Corbyn said she should step down. An updated BBC forecast predicted May’s Conservatives would win 318 of the 650 House of Commons seats, eight short of a majority, while the left-wing opposition Labour Party would take 267 — producing a “hung parliament” and potential deadlock. from Reuters

Currency speculators are looking for a major fall in the Pound.

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So, what’s it like in America – when the Nazis and fascists come marching into your home town? Read this.

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Of course, as weird as things are over here right now, conditions are probably better than they are in Hong Kong:

HK cages

This is called, by the way, structural inequality. Coming to a village near you.

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Kansas has rejected the years-long tax-cutting experiment that brought its governor, Sam Brownback, to international attention and provided a model for the Trump administration’s troubled tax plans. In a warning shot to the Trump administration, even Brownback’s fellow Republicans voted to override his veto of a bill to reverse many of the tax cuts he championed as a way to spur entrepreneurs and the economy, but which have left the state with a $1bn hole in its budget. from The Guardian

Oops…(ahem, cough cough). Got time to rearrange the deck chairs on the Titanic, fellas?

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Then there’s this goody: “Eric Trump appeared on Sean Hannity’s show Tuesday night and lashed out at those who oppose his father’s administration, saying they’re “not even people.” Huffington Post, with video.

And who says Hitler never had any offspring?

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WASHINGTON — The day after President Trump asked James B. Comey, the F.B.I. director, to end an investigation into his former national security adviser, Mr. Comey confronted Attorney General Jeff Sessions and said he did not want to be left alone again with the president, according to current and former law enforcement officials. Mr. Comey believed Mr. Sessions should protect the F.B.I. from White House influence, the officials said, and pulled him aside after a meeting in February to tell him that private interactions between the F.B.I. director and the president were inappropriate. But Mr. Sessions could not guarantee that the president would not try to talk to Mr. Comey alone again, the officials said. from the NYTimes

Does this sound a little like Date Rape to you?

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With terrorism rising you’d think Herr Drumpf would increase spending on anti-terrorism programs. Well, that’s just not so, Kimosabe. Don’t take my word for it, either. No, read this:

(LAS VEGAS) — Cities are pushing back on the possibility of losing millions of dollars in U.S. anti-terrorism grants under President Donald Trump’s spending plan — the third straight White House that has moved to cut the funding. The proposed budget would cut cash for the program from $605 million to nearly $449 million for the fiscal year beginning Oct. 1 and require cities such as New York, Los Angeles and Las Vegas to pay 25% of the grants. The administration says it is proposing the cost-share system, similar to other grant programs, to “share accountability” with states and cities. But lawmakers and local officials argue that reducing funding for the Urban Area Security Initiative would undercut efforts to maintain safe communities. Cities have spent the money on command centers, active-shooter training and personnel to patrol airports, transit hubs and waterways. Big cities have been down this road before, with funding fluctuating over the years. President George W. Bush created the grant program after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, but scaled it back in his second term. President Barack Obama’s proposed 2017 budget suggested slashing the funding from $600 million to $330 million. from Time

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And the liar, liar pants on fire award goes to?

On Sunday’s “Meet the Press,” Scott Pruitt, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency, claimed that the U.S. has created 50,000 jobs in the coal sector since the fourth quarter of 2016. The statistic carries an important message for the White House. Trump has brought extraordinary attention to the decline of coal jobs, for which he’s blamed Obama-imposed regulations. Coal’s immediate bounce-back would represent a major early win for a president who has made promises to revive the economy of the 1950s, when mining was more dominant. But Pruitt’s statistic wasn’t just flagrantly incorrect. It’s being used to support a nonsensical argument that the United States should orient its global policy based on a sector employing 0.03 percent of the economy, as there are fewer coal mining workers than there are people employed at Carl’s Jr. franchises or Disney World. Quite simply, the coal sector has added about 1,000 jobs since October 2016—not 50,000. Coal could not have added 50,000 jobs in the last eight months, since that is essentially the size of the entire coal industry, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Pruitt’s statistic would otherwise imply that entire coal mining industry started in October. (Perhaps he meant 50,000 total mining jobs, but the vast majority of those positions have nothing to do with coal jobs; indeed, natural gas-mining workers might even be replacing them.) from The Atlantic

So, how many times do I need to repeat this? Just what did you expect?

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From (c) The Journal of Unintended Consequences (I really should (c) copyright that, shouldn’t I?), we have this from our peaceful neighbors to the north:

Canada intends to make “a substantial investment” in its military because it can no longer rely on the United States for leadership in the face of threats posed by terrorist groups or countries like Russia and North Korea, the Canadian foreign minister said Tuesday. Echoing complaints made recently by German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Chrystia Freeland told Canada’s House of Commons that Washington is no longer committed to its position of world leadership, forcing Canada to invest in its own armed forces to defend liberal democracy. “The fact that our friend and ally has come to question the very worth of its mantle of global leadership, puts into sharper focus the need for the rest of us to set our own clear and sovereign course,” Freeland said, never mentioning President Trump by name. But she said many of the voters in last November’s U.S. presidential election cast ballots “animated in part by a desire to shrug off the burden of world leadership.”

 

Like I said, just what did you expect. Anyway, have a nice weekend!

4 thoughts on “Sunday in the Sun + 11 June 2017

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