Thursday, December 13, 2018

Hazy Shade of Winter


The Bangles


Maybe This Time


The Good Lovelies




Walked right into it


From the pen of Ricl McKee



Is He Next ?


From the pen of Milt Priggee



Housing they can afford


From the pen of Kevin Siers



Such a Deal!


Stephen on Cohen & Trump


It's not OK



Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Best Part Of Your Love


Madison Violet


Circle the wagons


From the pen of Randall Enos



No Wrapping Necessary


From the pen of Kevin Siers



Some walls work


From the pen of Jack Ohman



Today he is taking responsibility for a shutdown


But we must always remember we are talking about Cheeto Mussolini here, a man who has avoided responsibility for everything negative he possibly can in his life. Yesterday his mouth ran away with him and he proudly took responsibility for any government shutdown and did so in camera.
The trick in Washington has always been to make sure a government shutdown is pinned on the other guy. President Trump is the first to ever pin one on himself.

In a new twist on the old game of shutdown politics dating to the 1990s, Mr. Trump was essentially goaded on Tuesday by Representative Nancy Pelosi of California and Senator Chuck Schumer of New York into embracing ownership of a shutdown yet to come if Democrats do not accede to his request for $5 billion to build a wall on the southern border with Mexico.

“I will take the mantle,” Mr. Trump told the two Democratic leaders in the Oval Office, saying he would proudly close parts of the executive branch if he did not get his way. “I’m not going to blame you for it,” he continued. “The last time you shut it down, it didn’t work. I will take the mantle of shutting down, and I’m going to shut it down for border security.”

A smiling Mr. Schumer seemed more than satisfied with Mr. Trump’s retort. “O.K., fair enough,” he said.

The moment was a little reminiscent of the climactic scene in “A Few Good Men,” when Tom Cruise’s character elicits an incriminating answer from Jack Nicholson’s Marine colonel. In this case, Ms. Pelosi and Mr. Schumer were more than happy to handle the president’s truth. Ms. Pelosi couldn’t say the term “Trump shutdown” enough times.

“We gave the president two options that would keep the government open,” the two leaders said in a joint statement after the remarkable White House session that offered a sneak peek at 2019’s divided government. “It’s his choice to accept one of those options or shut the government down.”

“If we have to close down the country over border security, I actually like that in terms of an issue,” Mr. Trump told reporters late Tuesday after the Democrats had departed. “I will take it because we are closing it down for border security, and I think I win that every single time.”

“I don’t mind owning that issue,” he said of a shutdown.
Trumpoons may buy this bit of orange showmanship but the majority of the country will be fed up with The Terrible Toddlers manhood issues.

What Trump wants for Xmas


Trevor Noah


No wonder he's having trouble erecting it


Stephen Colbert dismatles Individual 1


We didn't learn



Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Feel This Ache


Dusty Sunshine


Found this job on Monster


From the pen of R J Matson



Very Stylish


From the pen of David Fitzsimmons



Good Dog !


From the pen of Bruce Plante



Time for Victory McNuggets


Trevor Noah on Individual 1


The Individual 1 Follies


Seth Meyers takes a Closer Look


This could be fun for me


Stephen Colbert throws his hat in the ring


The buck doesn't stop there anymore.



Monday, December 10, 2018

Troubled Sleep


Cristina Vane


In the spirit of a lively debate


Tom Tomorrow outlines the rationale behind the assorted RWNJ whackjobs on the various talking head shows.

Barely enough room for his thumbs


From the pen of John Cole



Scorched Earth Policy


From the pen of Stuart Carlson



Hey! It's Only A Bird, Amirite ?


From the pen of Monte Wolverton



Did Trump and Cohen act Alone ?


Now that Michael Cohen has been nailed to the wall and tied to The Donald, the feds are looking into who else in The Trump Organization may have been involved and to what extent.
What the prosecutors did not say in Mr. Cohen’s sentencing memorandum filed on Friday, however, is that they have continued to scrutinize what other executives in the president’s family business may have known about those crimes, which involved hush-money payments to two women who had said they had affairs with Mr. Trump.

After Mr. Cohen pleaded guilty in August to breaking campaign finance laws and other crimes — he will be sentenced on Wednesday — the federal prosecutors in Manhattan shifted their attention to what role, if any, Trump Organization executives played in the campaign finance violations, according to people briefed on the matter.

Mr. Cohen, Mr. Trump’s self-described fixer, has provided assistance in that inquiry, which is separate from the investigation by the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III.

In addition to implicating Mr. Trump in the payments to the two women, Mr. Cohen has told prosecutors that the company’s chief financial officer was involved in discussions about them, a claim that is now a focus of the inquiry, according to the people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the investigation is continuing.

Mr. Cohen has told prosecutors that he believes Mr. Trump personally approved the company’s decision to reimburse him for one of the payments, one of the people said.

Neither the chief financial officer, Allen Weisselberg, nor any other executives at the Trump Organization have been accused of wrongdoing, and there is no indication that anyone at the company will face charges in connection with the inquiry.

But in recent weeks, the prosecutors contacted the company to renew a request they had made this year for documents and other materials, according to the people. The precise nature of the materials sought was unclear, but the renewed request is further indication that prosecutors continue to focus on the president’s company even as the case against Mr. Cohen comes to a close, the people said.

At the time of the payments to the two women, Mr. Trump was the head of the company, and although he turned over its management to his elder sons, he still owns it through a trust. While the prevailing view at the Justice Department is that a sitting president cannot be indicted, the prosecutors in Manhattan could consider charging him after leaving office. It is also possible the prosecutors could seek his testimony before he leaves office if they continue the investigation into anyone else who might have had a role in the crimes, a person briefed on the matter said.

A spokeswoman for the Trump Organization did not respond to requests for comment.
The Donald always needed someone to do the actual work for him so the idea that Trump Org. executives were involved in his crimes is a small step that could provide big results. Time will tell.

No wonder he's worried



Never Again



Sunday, December 09, 2018

Willow Weep For Me


Sarah Vaughn


Vandalism


From the pen of Stuart Carlson



For the Holiday Season 2018



Trump Family Xmas List


From the pen of Brian McFadden



He's their crook


And the Republicans in Congress are sticking with The Orange Humperdoo come hell or high water, for the time being. If one listens to their various apologia of his crimes one can almost hear the calculations running through their heads as to how long they should do this.
Republicans on Sunday defended President Trump amid mounting legal woes stemming from the special counsel probe led by Robert S. Mueller III, with some brushing aside new court filings that detail previously unreported contacts between Russia and Trump’s 2016 campaign and directly implicate the president in plans to buy women’s silence.

In an interview on NBC News’s “Meet the Press,” Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) played down the alleged campaign finance violations detailed by prosecutors, arguing that such missteps should not be “over-criminalized.”

“I personally think that if someone makes an error in filing paperwork or not categorizing, it shouldn’t be jail time, it ought to be a fine,” Paul said. He added that if campaign finance violations are aggressively prosecuted, “we’re going to become a banana republic, where every president gets prosecuted and every president gets thrown in jail when they’re done with office.”

The senator also contended that there was nothing illegal about Trump’s efforts to build a hotel in Moscow during the 2016 campaign, so long as he didn’t promise anything in exchange for it.
That is a big if there Senator. And while the gun isn't smoking it sure is pointed at his having done so.
On Friday, federal prosecutors filed new court papers implicating Trump in plans to buy the silence of women who might go public with allegations of affairs with him. The documents also revealed that Michael Cohen, Trump’s former personal attorney, told prosecutors about what appeared to be a previously unknown November 2015 contact with a Russian national who offered the Trump campaign “synergy on a government level.”

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) said Sunday on CBS News’s “Face the Nation” that “there’s no reason to not stand by anybody in this moment,” drawing a distinction between individuals who have been accused of crimes and pleaded guilty and others, presumably Trump. Rubio emphasized “the right of someone to argue that the evidence is not what you say it is.”
While it is true that even The Orange Humperdoo is innocent until proven guilty, they are particularly chary of calling for full support of the Mueller investigation to exonerate OH as everything coming out so far has gone the other way. But the Republicans have hitched their horse to OH and, in the spirit of mixing my metaphors, see no reason to break their rice bowls yet.

Tweets Galore


Weekend Update


The Corporate Safe Place: White Collar Crime


Samantha Bee


Time to tax them



Saturday, December 08, 2018

Driving Down El Dorado


Anne McCue


Modern Bull Riding


From the pen of Steve Sack



The Real Reason


From the pen of Kevin Siers



Buy the Son-in-Law, Cover Your Ass


Because who wouldn't want their bestie to be one of The Orange Humperdoo's trusted associates and as a bonus, one who is easily as dumb as OH himself. The Saudis wanted to get an edge with the president when they bought Jared and ended up with their most loyal lobbyist.
Senior American officials were worried. Since the early months of the Trump administration, Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and Middle East adviser, had been having private, informal conversations with Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the favorite son of Saudi Arabia’s king.

Given Mr. Kushner’s political inexperience, the private exchanges could make him susceptible to Saudi manipulation, said three former senior American officials. In an effort to tighten practices at the White House, a new chief of staff tried to reimpose longstanding procedures stipulating that National Security Council staff members should participate in all calls with foreign leaders.

But even with the restrictions in place, Mr. Kushner, 37, and Prince Mohammed, 33, kept chatting, according to three former White House officials and two others briefed by the Saudi royal court. In fact, they said, the two men were on a first-name basis, calling each other Jared and Mohammed in text messages and phone calls.

The exchanges continued even after the Oct. 2 killing of Jamal Khashoggi, the Saudi journalist who was ambushed and dismembered by Saudi agents, according to two former senior American officials and the two people briefed by the Saudis.

As the killing set off a firestorm around the world and American intelligence agencies concluded that it was ordered by Prince Mohammed, Mr. Kushner became the prince’s most important defender inside the White House, people familiar with its internal deliberations say.

A delegation of Saudis close to the prince visited the United States as early as the month Mr. Trump was elected, the documents show, and brought back a report identifying Mr. Kushner as a crucial focal point in the courtship of the new administration. He brought to the job scant knowledge about the region, a transactional mind-set and an intense focus on reaching a deal with the Palestinians that met Israel’s demands, the delegation noted.

Even then, before the inauguration, the Saudis were trying to position themselves as essential allies who could help the Trump administration fulfill its campaign pledges. In addition to offering to help resolve the dispute between Israel and the Palestinians, the Saudis offered hundreds of billions of dollars in deals to buy American weapons and invest in American infrastructure. Mr. Trump later announced versions of some of these items with great fanfare when he made his first foreign trip: to an Arab-Islamic summit in Riyadh, the Saudi capital. The Saudis had extended that invitation during the delegation’s November 2016 visit.

“The inner circle is predominantly deal makers who lack familiarity with political customs and deep institutions, and they support Jared Kushner,” the Saudi delegation wrote of the incoming administration in a slide presentation obtained by the Lebanese newspaper Al Akhbar, which provided it to The Times. Several Americans who spoke with the delegation confirmed the slide presentation’s accounts of the discussions.

The courtship of Mr. Kushner appears to have worked.

Bending protocol, Mr. Kushner arranged for Prince Mohammed, often referred to by his initials as M.B.S., to receive the kind of treatment usually reserved for heads of state, with photographs and news media coverage, according to a person involved in the arrangements. It appears to have been the first face-to-face meeting between Mr. Kushner and the prince, but Mr. Kushner raised eyebrows by telling others in the White House that he and Prince Mohammed had already spoken several times before, two people at the event recalled.

In a statement, a White House spokesman said that “Jared has always meticulously followed protocols and guidelines regarding the relationship with MBS and all of the other foreign officials with whom he interacts.”

White House officials declined to explain those protocols and guidelines, and declined to comment on Mr. Kushner’s one-on-one communications with Prince Mohammed since the killing of Mr. Khashoggi.
Completely unqualified and totally in over his head, Jared is played like a fiddle by the Saudis while he pretends to be some big ganstermacher in the Middle East can of worms.

Mueller Christmas Everyone


Samantha on Mueller


He's just garnish


Stephen Colbert on VP


The Day of Reckoning




Friday, December 07, 2018

No Matter Who


Margaret Glaspy


The GOP Grinch


From the pen of Bruce Plante



A poem for the workers


This poem was found in comments on the article about undocumented workers in the NY Times of 12/6/18. It was posted by C Whiting.

I make your bed. 
I clean your toilet. 
I carry the insults you heap
 on hardworking people like me
 across my aching shoulders.

 I wear your little flag pin
 and know that I am part of a game,
 a performance,
 a hoax.

 I scrub the orange makeup
 from the collar of your shirt

 and your voice rises in anger
 because those stains
 tell a stubborn truth,
 about the mask you wear.

 I have no power over my own story.
 You have changed and abused 
 and distorted my truth
 for your own convenience,
 so that from your lips 
 I am no longer a survivor,
 courageous, industrious, human.
 Instead, I scrub your toilet 
 and the words
 criminal, 
 “illegal,” 
 rapist
 drug-dealer
 ring in my ears.

 Scrub.
 Scrub. 
 Scrub.

 Enough.

Didn't we all know this?


It turns out that after all his vicious, heartless ranting about undocumented immigrants, a major portion of Donald Trump's workforce at his Bedminster NJ golf course are undocumented. And the icing on the cake, their supervisors know it and help them get forged documentation to allow them to continue working.
During more than five years as a housekeeper at the Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J., Victorina Morales has made Donald J. Trump’s bed, cleaned his toilet and dusted his crystal golf trophies. When he visited as president, she was directed to wear a pin in the shape of the American flag adorned with a Secret Service logo.

Because of the “outstanding” support she has provided during Mr. Trump’s visits, Ms. Morales in July was given a certificate from the White House Communications Agency inscribed with her name.

Quite an achievement for an undocumented immigrant housekeeper.

Ms. Morales’s journey from cultivating corn in rural Guatemala to fluffing pillows at an exclusive golf resort took her from the southwest border, where she said she crossed illegally in 1999, to the horse country of New Jersey, where she was hired at the Trump property in 2013 with documents she said were phony.

She said she was not the only worker at the club who was in the country illegally.

Sandra Diaz, 46, a native of Costa Rica who is now a legal resident of the United States, said she, too, was undocumented when she worked at Bedminster between 2010 and 2013. The two women said they worked for years as part of a group of housekeeping, maintenance and landscaping employees at the golf club that included a number of undocumented workers, though they could not say precisely how many. There is no evidence that Mr. Trump or Trump Organization executives knew of their immigration status. But at least two supervisors at the club were aware of it, the women said, and took steps to help workers evade detection and keep their jobs.

Trump boasted that he had used an electronic verification system, E-Verify, to ensure that only those legally entitled to work were hired.

“We didn’t have one illegal immigrant on the job,” Mr. Trump said then.

But throughout his campaign and his administration, Ms. Morales, 45, has been reporting for work at Mr. Trump’s golf course in Bedminster, where she is still on the payroll. An employee of the golf course drives her and a group of others to work every day, she says, because it is known that they cannot legally obtain driver’s licenses.

A diminutive woman with only two years of education who came to the United States speaking no English, Ms. Morales has had an unusual window into one of the president’s favorite retreats: She has cleaned the president’s villa while he watched television nearby; she stood on the sidelines when potential cabinet members were brought in for interviews and when the White House chief of staff, John Kelly, arrived to confer with the president.

“I never imagined, as an immigrant from the countryside in Guatemala, that I would see such important people close up,” she said.

But Ms. Morales said she has been hurt by Mr. Trump’s public comments since he became president, including equating Latin American immigrants with violent criminals. It was that, she said, along with abusive comments from a supervisor at work about her intelligence and immigration status, that made her feel that she could no longer keep silent.

“We are tired of the abuse, the insults, the way he talks about us when he knows that we are here helping him make money,” she said. “We sweat it out to attend to his every need and have to put up with his humiliation.”
The sad part of this is The Donald really does not know these people really exist. He only knows the cruel fantasy picture that he spews in his campaign rallies and elsewhere.

They can still be dicks


Seth Meyers takes a Closer Look


His presidency's crowning achievement: not ruining a funeral.


Stephen Colbert on Donald Trump's 'good' behavior


Sarah's Dream



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