Putin’s puppet is an international laughing stock

A Whiny sniffling Donald Trump is suddenly leaving the NATO summit, just hours after a video showing several world leaders joking about him went viral. Trump then canceled a press conference and singled out Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as “two-faced” before heading for the exits, according to the Associated Press.

Trudeau was in a group of other world leaders commiserating about their frustrations with the U.S. buffoon. Among them were French President Emmanuel Macron, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and Britain’s Princess Anne, daughter of Queen Elizabeth II.

In addition to canceling a scheduled press conference Trump apparently has also canceled a meeting with Italy’s prime minister Giuseppe Conte. He is expected to keep a meeting with Danish leaders before prematurely fleeing back to Washington and the warm embrace of FOX news.

The United States has been reduced to the butt of jokes and ridicule thanks to this orange-tinted buffoon.

Papa Putin is so pleased

Trump: “The worst mistake in American history”


Counterintelligence expert Malcolm Nance issued a chilling warning about the lengths he thinks President Donald Trump will go to save himself.

In an interview with SiriusXM Progress host Dean Obeidallah, Nance noted that from “day one” he was warning that America was under attack by Russia, who installed Trump in the presidency.

“Let me tell you this: Donald Trump is a megalomaniac,” Nance said. “We all know that. He is a raving narcissist and the deference that has been given to him is fuel to his megalomania. I think he’s capable of anything. And we are way past — way past — Richard Nixon talking to himself and talking to the portraits at the White House.”

But then he called Nixon a model of civility, decorum, and respectability compared to Trump.

“Donald Trump does not care about the presidency,” Nance explained. “He does not care about America. He does not care about the American public. He only cares about himself and he thinks the people that support him will do what he says.”

Nance went on to say that he’s spent his life defending the Constitution of the United States, working for the seat of the presidency and not the person.

“And that man is unfit to have ever been in there,” he continued.It will be considered the worst mistake in American history. He will make this much, much worse. And what we need to do is be prepared to go down and reclaim our birthright through the Constitution.”

UN rightly pairs Trump with his bestie dictators pals

On Tuesday, American tin-pot Dictator Donald Trump gave his speech before the United Nations General Assembly.

The logistics of the lineup conspicuously put Trump in the middle of a long list of brutal dictators who also spoke.

Preceding Trump on the schedule was Jair Bolsonaro, the recently elected president of Brazil who is linked to paramilitary gangs and has claimed that the only problem with his country’s former military dictatorship was that it maybe should have killed even more dissidents.

Then after Trump finished, he was followed by Egyptian President Abdul Fattah el-Sisi, whose regime has rolled back human rights reforms by executive fiat, imprisoned rivals, and conducted massacres, as well as Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who routinely arrests people for making fun of him and who recently held a sham referendum to rewrite his nation’s constitution.

The initial speaking order at the world’s top diplomatic serves as a vivid reminder of democracy’s declining fortunes around the world. It’s also already drawing attention to Trump’s repeated encouragement, and occasional emulation, of authoritarian leaders.

Trump has bragged of his ‘love’ for North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, praised Russia’s Vladimir Putin as ‘strong,’ downplayed Saudi Arabia’s killing of U.S.-based journalist Jamal Khashoggi, spoken warmly of China’s Xi Jinping and reportedly referred to Egypt’s Sisi as ‘my favorite dictator.’ (On Monday, ahead of their bilateral meeting in New York, Trump called Sisi ‘my friend’ and called him ‘a real leader’ who has ‘done some things that are absolutely amazing in a short period of time.’)”

Autocrat Trump gave a strikingly nationalist speech before the United Nations General Assembly.

Dear leader Trump denounced globalism before the international organization and proclaimed the United States the most powerful nation in the world. “The future does not belong to globalists, it belongs to patriots,” Trump told the gathering.

“The free world must embrace its national foundations,” Trump said, and “must not attempt to erase them or replace them.” Trump then attacked his predecessors for pursuing a global agreement.

“Globalism exerted a religious fervor over past leaders,” he said. “As far as America is concerned, those days are over.”

info from Politico and Raw Story

Normalized rigging, cheating, and lying

Sieg heil y’all

MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough dismissed Donald Trump’s accusations against Joe Biden, as the Ukraine scandal continues to widen.

The “Morning Joe” host ripped “dictator” Trump for pressuring Ukraine’s president to make up dirt on Biden and then leaning on states to cancel Republican primaries to snuff out three challengers’ campaigns.

“You talk about an inside game, rigging the process, and we talked about how Donald Trump is rigging the process on the Republican side to make sure that as many states as possible cancel democratic elections for the primary,” Scarborough said. “I mean, he’s learning from Vladimir Putin the way you get 100 percent of the vote is you just cancel the elections, and that’s what Donald Trump is getting Republican operatives to do across the country.”

“So, he’s rigging the election that way,” Scarborough added, “he’s using his power now to try to rig the election so a foreign power is pressured to actually try to dig up dirt on Joe Biden and his family.”

The allegations Trump and his lackey attorney have been trying to push have already been investigated, and no evidence of wrongdoing by Biden or his son has ever turned up.

“To use the word that Rudy Giuliani used, and actions that most voters would consider to be very slimy,” Scarborough said, “especially since every investigation has shown that Joe Biden not only acted properly, but did what democracies across the West were asking him to do, and that is clean up Ukraine by getting rid of a corrupt investigator.”


Don’t worry everything is fine Trump and his stooges are in control

Trump and his stooges Mulvaney, Kudlow, Navarro and Mnuchin


Trump inherited a growing and good economy, and for roughly 2½ years has everything he can to milk it for his personal and political gain. And as with his inherited business empire, he has also somehow convinced much of the public that this windfall was due to his personal talents rather than dumb luck.

But right now, his dumb luck — and ours — might be running out.

Bond markets are flashing warning signs. Stock prices are whipsawing. Some troubling economic data are rolling in, both here and abroad. All this suggests that the risk of a U.S. recession is rising.

Trump seems to be worried about getting blamed for what is coming. For months, he has been setting up the Federal Reserve as a scapegoat — including for market swings caused by his own foolish trade wars. When stocks go up, Trump claims full credit; when they go down, it’s the Fed’s fault. Personal responsibility and all that.

What’s Trump’s plan? A badly mismanaged recession. Which seems inevitable if, indeed, recession strikes. If things go south, this administration doesn’t have a plan. It never had a plan. And it doesn’t have competent personnel in place to come up with a plan.

Trump’s economic dream team or the stooges: Kudlow, Navarro and Mnuchin

Trump’s economic brain trust consists of a guy who plays an economist on TV, a crank who has been disowned by the (real) economics profession and the producer of “The Lego Batman Movie.”

For those unfamiliar with this particular dream team, the first person on that list is National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow, an affable former CNBC personality. Kudlow has one skill that actually could be useful in a crisis: being able to communicate clearly to financial markets. That skill has been rendered moot, however, by Trump’s inability to settle on any consistent message worthy of communicating. Next is senior White House aide and trade adviser Peter Navarro. When profiled in the New Yorker in 2016, Navarro could not name a single other economist who agreed with his views on trade. More recently, he suggested the Wall Street Journal editorial page sounded communist!

Dow falls more than 800 points amidst recession fear

The Dow plunged more than 800 points as investors feared a recession following poor economic data from Germany and China. (Reuters)

And finally, there’s Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. Bankrolling “Suicide Squad” and other movies — whatever their artistic merits — and earning the coveted title of greatest sycophant in Cabinet history bear little relevance to rescuing the world from economic crisis.

Moreover, Mnuchin’s Treasury Department is rife with vacancies. Many senior jobs lack even a nominee. There is likewise no nominee for the Senate-confirmed job of chair of the Council of Economic Advisers. The acting chair is a health expert.

Not that we should expect Trump, who reportedly disregards briefings that don’t feature his name in every paragraph, to take the wise counsel of aides even if it were on offer. Indeed, the scary question is not whether there are any smart people in meetings with Trump, but if there’s one he would even listen to.

The only competent economic policymakers we have right now are over at the Fed, an institution that Trump is spending all his energy trying to discredit. He has done this by questioning Fed officials’ abilities (a theme of his blow-by-blow tweetstorm of Wednesday’s market rout, which referred to Trump’s own hand-picked Fed chair as “clueless”); and he’s done it by compromising the central bank’s perceived political independence.

Whenever the Fed has refused to bend to Trump’s will, he (alongside other members of his team) has taken to the airwaves to complain, in violation of a multi-decade-long norm for the White House to never comment on monetary policy. This means that even if Fed officials cut interest rates further next month solely because they believe that would be best for the economy — which in my view, would be the only reason this group of professionals would ever cut rates — at least some Fed-watchers will instead interpret the action as a response to the president’s bullying.

In other words, regardless of what the Fed does, Trump is eroding its credibility just when we need it most.

Additionally, with interest rates already low and some powers taken away by the Dodd-Frank Act, the Fed also has fewer tools at its disposal than in recessions past. Fiscal policy, too, is somewhat limited. Trump already spent nearly $2 trillion on tax cuts for corporations and the wealthy, leaving relatively little powder left in the keg when we’ll actually need it.

Trump — like the rest of us — had better hope and pray that we don’t have a recession anytime soon. Because if we do, it’s gonna be bad.

Edited from Washington Post column

When he’s finished putting down your dog, Trump is going to………..

When he’s finished putting down your dog,
Trump is going to take away your health care,
raise your taxes,
eliminate your job,
take away your right to an abortion,
limit your right to vote,
turn your air and water brown,
cut your Social Security and Medicare,
and tell you if you don’t like it, you can leave!

It doesn’t matter who’s the nominee. This is the message Democrats have to carry to the country in 2020.
Is it an exaggeration?
A scare tactic?
Are you kidding? We already know all this stuff is true, and we don’t need “facts” to surmise that if given half a chance Trump and his minions will find some way to make euthanizing shelter animals easier and more profitable. For Donald Trump and the Republican Party, he leads, money and cruelty is who they are. It’s what they do.

Democrats had better wake up to the fact that the 2020 campaign, on every level from the presidential race on down, is going to take place in the gutter. It’s long past time to take the gloves off. Republicans never put them on. They’ve been out there stealing, lying and cheating their way into office for decades. They don’t have a concept of playing fair. They play dirty. They play to win. They’ll do anything it takes to do it.

They’ve already gerrymandered electoral districts so that Democrats get a majority of the vote and a minority of House seats like they do in states like Wisconsin and North Carolina. They’ve passed laws restricting the right to vote in 25 states since 2010, according to the Brennan Center for Justice, which tracks voting laws. Fifteen states have more restrictive voter ID requirements, and ten have passed laws making it harder for citizens to register to vote. Every state with new voting restrictions is controlled by Republicans, and a Republican-backed lawsuit succeeded in defenestrating the Voting Rights Act in Shelby County v. Holder. And I hardly need to go into what they’ve done to campaign finance laws. Mitt Romney’s cri de coeur in 2012, “Corporations are people too!” is all you need to know. Now they’re floating shit like this: all Democrats are Socialists. That whiny little Trump-pilot-fish Lindsey Graham recently asserted that AOC and the rest of the “Squad” are communists. Every other time Trump opens his mouth he’s chirping that Democrats are for “open borders.” They’re out there daily pushing the lie that Democrats want to come right into your homes and take away your guns. And don’t you know that they’ll get around to some bullshit about how Democrats want ISIS to win in Syria and Iraq and then they’ll turn Afghanistan over to the Taliban.

Do you think Republicans care if it’s all complete bullshit? Hell no. They’re going to run on this crap, and anything else they can think up over the next 15 months, and they’re going to laugh all the way to the ballot box. You want to know what else Trump and his lily-livered bunch of chicken hawks are going to do? They’re going to sell the idea that Donald Trump, who had five draft deferments, skipped out of Vietnam with his bone spurs, capitulated to Vladimir Putin at Helsinki, writes “love letters” to Kim Jung Un, ripped babies out their mothers arms along the southern border, and has been charged by multiple women with rape as well as sexual assault  is a tough guy.

I’ll wait for you to reach down and pick your jaw up from the floor on that one. You okay now? Is your jaw reattached?

Here’s why Republicans are pushing the lie that Trump is a tough guy. Because it works. Historian Rick Perlstein, author of a series of books on the rise of Republican conservatism, was interviewed in The New Yorker last week and said something I think the Democratic Party has forgotten over the last decade or so. “Toughness is a core primary value,” Perlstein said, referring to red states that Democrats have failed to carry in recent elections. “All of us remember 2004 when George W. Bush won reelection explicitly on this rationale of saying we know people disagree with his issue positions, but we are going to position him as the guy who sticks with his gut no matter what.”

Sound familiar? Bush, who famously avoided Vietnam by joining the Air Force National Guard and then failed to show up for duty during the war years, was sold as “tough.” Ronald Reagan was awarded the Bronze Star for Toughness when he yelled out that he “paid for this microphone” at some long-forgotten debate in New Hampshire in 1980. And now we’ve got Donald Trump, whose boasting about grabbing women “by the pussy” on the infamous Access Hollywood tape is what passes for Republican toughness today.

The appearance by a real-life tough guy on Capitol Hill got me thinking about what the Democrats’ problem has been when it comes to this “toughness” thing. Robert Mueller, a Marine veteran of Vietnam who earned a Bronze Star medal and a Purple Heart, has been roundly criticized for his halting and seemingly imprecise testimony before the House Judiciary and Intelligence committees this week. The contrast between the serious, taciturn Mueller and such bellowing “bomb throwers” as Representative Jim Jordan of Ohio couldn’t have been starker.

Mueller’s problem on Wednesday is the same as the problem Democrats have when they run for office. Mueller was careful, nuanced, and he stuck to the facts. His testimony, when it came right down to it, was imperfect in the way that any sane person must be if he or she is bound by a sense of duty, propriety, and an urge to abide by accepted norms. He came across as a somewhat reluctant, hesitant witness, while if you read his testimony, he was anything but. He was measured, he was accurate, and he was truthful.

Republicans on the two committees were almost uniformly the opposite. Their speechifying and questioning was impertinent, premised on lies, and intended to distract from the truth. In short, they conducted themselves at the Mueller hearings in the manner that they run for office.

There is a lesson Democrats running for office can learn from the Mueller hearings. It does you little good to stick to the rules of good order and behavior when the other side has abandoned both. I’m not saying that Democrats should adopt Republican ways by joining them in lying, cheating and stealing. But I am saying that Democrats can learn something from Republican imprecision.

Take health care as just one example. Ever since the debates over Obamacare, Democrats have been lost in a blizzard of confusing and often contradictory details about how to handle the nation’s healthcare crisis. Obamacare was an imperfect compromise, and now they’re torn between defending a muddled status quo or going for one variation or another on Medicare for all, and nobody really understands one plan from another. Meanwhile, Republicans have spent the last several decades firing potshots at Democrats and proposing no plan of their own.

How about this: what if Democrats took a page out of the Republican playbook and simply said, “Don’t worry, you can trust us. We’re going to take care of your health care.” That’s the plan, the whole thing. It would have the advantage of being both simple and true. They could apply this approach across the board. Here’s what we’re going to do: we’re going to lower your taxes, raise your pay, protect your jobs, reduce your student loan payments, protect Social Security and Medicare, maintain your right to an abortion, reform the immigration laws, and protect the southern border. And we’re going to end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

What plan do we have for all of this? You know us, we’re on your side, and we’re going to do what we say.

Pick a side and stick with it. Take a stand and don’t retreat. Don’t be intimidated by the size of the problems or the messy imperfections of what it takes to establish an honest government and pay for it honestly and run it honestly so that problems can actually be solved. Don’t get lost in the weeds of plans and white papers, and for crying out loud, stop giving Republicans a leg up by squabbling and nitpicking at each other. You’re Democrats, not suicide bombers.

You want to know what toughness is in this election year? Republicans tell lies and cheat to win. We don’t. Republicans stand by a racist president. We stand up to him and call him what he is. Republicans will take your health insurance away. We’ll protect it. Republicans are the party of Donald Trump. We’re the party of democracy and the American way.

We love this country. We’re not going anywhere but the ballot box and we’re going to vote, and we’re going to beat your sorry, lying ass.


This article first appeared in Salon

Time to defeat Mitch “the grim reaper” McConnell

Beating Senate crime boss Mitch McConnell, the self-described grim reaper in 2020 and taking back the Senate is just as important as beating the executive office crime boss Donald Trump. Exposing voters to the way in which the majority leader has made the Senate a graveyard for legislation that has broad support among voters is a great way to start. Particularly now the McConnell family’s graft and corruption been exposed.

Mitch McConnell likes to call himself the “grim reaper,” which is a rather odd label for a politician to embrace during a year when he is running for reelection. But if you want to cast yourself as the champion of “nostalgia voters” and embrace a revanchist agenda, killing off anything that helps the country adapt to the future might work.

But one thing is worth noting about McConnell’s response to this latest messaging. When discussing it with Fox talking head Laura Ingraham, the majority leader embraced his role as the grim reaper, killing off what he mislabels as “socialism.” The examples he gave didn’t fit the framing because they all have broad bipartisan support among voters. Instead, he named proposals that haven’t passed in the House: the Green New Deal, single-payer health care, and discussions about granting statehood to Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico. Wait! Puerto Rico! That one is especially odd because that territory of the United States has absolutely nothing to do with so-called “McConnell socialism”.

What McConnell obviously wants to do is avoid public recognition that he has blocked every bipartisan effort to limit dark money in politics, re-establish net neutrality, strengthen background checks for all gun purchases, provided real protections for Dreamers, establish paycheck fairness, and pass the Violence Against Women Act. We can now add that he continues to block all attempts to protect our elections from Russian and other foreign interference.

Democrats should do to McConnell what Republicans have done to Pelosi. I was referring to the way that she became the poster child that every Republican ran against.

All Democratic candidates for running for Senate should make the case that a vote for their opponent is a vote for McConnell and against our values in a democracy. This is one time when democrats should worry about taking a page out of the Republican playbook.

Based on a story in AlterNet