Saturday, September 30, 2017

General Defense

If you haven't seen the epic leadership displayed by Lieutenant General Jay Silveria, the Superintendent of the US Air Force Academy, after the discovery of racist graffiti on his campus, I highly recommend you go to YouTube and watch it.  It's an exceptional speech on tolerance, acceptance, and how our diversity makes us better Americans.  Quite frankly, it's the anti-racism speech we should've had our President give after Charlottesville, but he was too busy rooting for the racists.

Generals are an interesting rank in our armed forces.  They are the true leaders of our military, remarkable and noteworthy officers who've worked their way up through the ranks to join the upper echelon of our military's leadership.  How does a Captain or Major move up through the ranks to become one of our top brass?  It's a little like (and stay with me here) the Great British Baking Show.  When you start watching the first episode with 12 bakers, six or seven look like they might be contenders, but it's when you are down to the final 4 or 5, you realize only one or two of the initial group were ever really a contender for the top prize.  Some low level officers make it to Lieutenant Colonel, or full bird Colonel, but only true leaders get to start putting stars on their shoulders.

It doesn't mean some generals aren't militarily inferior.  George McClellan was a horrific leader, probably the worst military general we ever had.  He was so bad, after his ineptitude during the Peninsula Campaign, the North had to defeat the South by coming in from the west (look at a map!).  The majority of Union Generals during the Civil War, before Grant took over, were almost as bad as McClellan, and, as Ken Burns' sobering documentary on the Vietnam War shows, William Westmoreland was a fool when it came to a blueprint for success in SouthEast Asia.  And some Generals, like David Petraeus, get drunk on their power, thinking it gives them the ability to do whatever they want without consequences.

Major military conflicts aside, almost all Generals are wise, intelligent, (most of the time) non partisan, and as Lt. Gen. Silveria showed, capable of legendary leadership when you need it most.  One of the main reasons we have our standing in the world today is the leadership of our Armed Forces.  And no, it has very little to do with the military might they have at their disposal, but rather their diplomatic skills which are the difference maker.

The military seems to be infiltrating the Trump Administration.  There are the usual military associated cabinet positions.  The Secretary of Defense is former General James Mattis, a four star Marine General who worked with both Democratic and Republican Administrations, and who required Marines to undergo cultural sensitivity training before being deployed to the Middle East.  The current Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is Joseph Dunford, a four star Marine General who led NATO forced in Afghanistan with success (that's a neat trick) and who President Obama appointed as the Commandant of the Marine Corps.  As a Democrat and a Veteran, those two picks are top notch for those positions.  It makes me feel Trump had no say in those two.

But since other Trump Administration members have left their positions, two others have become more prominent.  General John Kelly was running the US Southern Command when Trump called upon him to be the Secretary of Homeland Security, a role he was confirmed for early in the Trump Administration.  Very quickly after Reince Priebus stepped down as White House Chief of Staff, Kelly assumed that role, and has been preforming a purge of unqualified buffoons who've been littering the White House ever since.  He canned Anthony Scaramucci as Communications Director immediately upon assuming the Chief of Staff position, got rid of Steve Bannon and Sebastian Gorka, the racist ideologues who were driving Trump further down a white supremacy path, and Kelly's now working on removing the self serving Jared Kushner, Trump's son in law, from his powerful position, a position Kushner is clearly using to promote his family's personal finances ├╝ber alles.

Lt. Gen. HR McMaster was Trump's hasty appointment for the role of National Secret Advisor after the disastrous short lived reign of Russian ally Michael Flynn.  Flynn and Bannon had loaded the National Security Council with racists and anti-Muslim zealots, a group of people McMaster was determined to remove.  He quickly fired several of the questionable members, leading to a stand off, with Bannon going on a full smear campaign against him, sometimes featuring anti-semitic attacks.  Trump backed McMaster publicly, reaffirming his confidence in him.

It's been interesting watching these Generals in their Administration roles.  This is purely speculative, but I feel as if these four Generals are viewing their military rank in a new application:  they're tasking themselves with saving the country from Trump, by acting as a last line of defense.

My theory is this harks back to the botched Yemen raid.  In Trump's first week in office, Trump, Kushner, Bannon and Mattis met to discuss launching what would be a failed raid of an al-Qaida base in Yemen, a raid most in the military were warning against, stating recon of the area was incomplete.  Trump, wanting a quick military victory, ordered 'Go.'  We lost one Navy seal, countless Yemenis were killed, and the objective was not eliminated.  By all accounts, the military had to send in heavily armed helicopters into a civilian area, shooting anything that moved, just to get our troops out of there.  It was a massive failure.  The Trump Administration initially tried to bury the raid, but then, when news of the failure leaked out, blamed the military for his decision.

I'm not sure what Mattis' role was in green lighting Yemen.  He might've been a good soldier and just went along.  He could've been protesting, drown out by Bannon and Kushner.  He could've sat silently and observed.  Regardless, the failure of that raid sent shockwaves through the military.  It was the sobering realization someone who's completely void of military knowledge, with zero respect of military assessment, with an itchy trigger finger and a massive inferiority complex could order the US military into combat, jeopardizing thousands of military personnel, billions in tax payers dollars, and our standing internationally.

After that, I think Mattis, Dunford, Kelly and McMaster realized the Trump Administration could break the military and this country.  They needed to purge the negative opportunists from the White House, and they've been cleaning up Trump's messes ever since.  They tolerate the unqualified blunders of Trump, in an effort hold the United States together.  They've even outright refused to follow Trump orders, telling transgender troops they have nothing to fear as long as they have a say.  And to their credit, they are having a say.   They can't stop Trump from grabbing his phone and heading into the golf course bathroom to rail against something foolish, nor can they stop the crap stream coming out of his mouth when he is off script, but they are sure doing what they need to behind the scenes to hold this country together, even seeming to have recruited Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who's diplomacy has taken a far more congenial tact in the last few months.

This doesn't necessarily excuse their political actions while in these positions.  They should bear the brunt of their decisions, but their outright refusal to follow through on Trump's transgender military ban tells you where their borders are.  They will allow moronic speeches and useless manhood measuring contests, but they won't be on board with real damaging policies.  And before anyone fears a military takeover of this country, I don't think that's the end game of these military leaders.  Far from it!  They have a sweet gig within the US Military, and they know destabilizing the countries governmental foundation would jeopardize that.  These are people who serve to protect ALL Americans, and they seem to understand their roll has changed with Trump in the White House.

At the end of all of this, those four are going to deserve a medal.  We'll make a new one:  for meritorious service in a time of self induced combat. We'll make the ribbon orange.

There's a neat trick military guys learn to remember the names of a one, two, three or four star General.  "Be My Little General":  Be = Brigadier General (one star), My = Major General (two stars), Little = Lieutenant General (three stars), General = General (four stars).  Little did I know that I would be saying that phrase, 'be my little general' to four men who might be what saves the United States from Donald Trump.

Friday, September 29, 2017

The Friday Link for 9/29/17

When I go up on YouTube, occasionally I'll get an interesting suggestion for my viewing.  I'm not sure why exactly they suggested old movie reviews from Siskel & Ebert, but they gave me gold.

It's hard to explain to my kids what life was like before the internet, and movies are a great example of the generational difference.  In the 80's, we had the local movie viewer in the newspaper, maybe one or two on the TV, Twin Cities Reader, City Pages, Rolling Stone, and Siskel and Ebert.  That was it, well outside of previews.  Heck, I remember not having the slightest idea what Ghostbusters was about when I was taken by Steve Clay and Jeff Foldenaur to see it at the Knollwood Mall theater.  That was a good movie to go into blind.  It wasn't until late in the 80's you started to see magazines more dedicated to movies, which led to Premier and Entertainment Weekly.  Before then, you depended on a handful of reviewers.

This is a good point to lament at how bad critics (arts, music, television, movies) are today.  Back then, you'd find a reviewer you liked, read them to get an understanding of who they were, what they liked and how they viewed the overall scope of whatever they were reviewing, and then listened to their take, not as a command, more as a guidepost.  Today, reviewers are mainly 'Loved it!  Hated it!  Loved it!  Hated it!'  They demand you obey their commands in regards to their suggestion, and rarely offer any insight into the product they're reviewing, choosing instead to gush about celebrity.  Reviewers/critics today are (mainly) garbage.

For my kids, reviewers are almost unnecessary.  There's somewhat of a review at Rotten Tomatoes, a website which runs a cumulative score of reviews.  They're accurate, but you really have no idea of the reviewers take and mindset; only a number or grade assigned to their column.  Most kids see a third of the movie before it's come out, as trailers are no longer for before movies only, with 4, 5 and even 6 trailers released before the opening.  Some people have resourcefully edited all of a movies trailers together, in what seems like the chronological order, and they give you a pretty good idea of what you're in store for.  There are no surprises anymore.

The late Gene Siskel and the late Roger Ebert, reviewed movies for years, starting back in the 70's with the old PBS show 'Sneak Previews,' before jumping to syndication in 1982 and changing the name to 'At the Movies' in 1986.  Their review process might seem a little 'Loved it!  Hated It!' with a thumbs up or a thumbs down, but rarely were their reviews not well thought out, crafted with a seriousness and sincerity which gave them credibility.  They were great to watch, regular viewing in my house.

Here are a bunch of their reviews for your Friday.  This is only a handful of the reviews I watched, but search You Tube and find the movies you remember.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Week 36 Dies a Pointless Death!

Funny story!

The process I have to make Trump Lists is as follows:  Monday through Friday, 3-5 times a day and on Saturday and Sunday 2-3 times a day, I check multiple news sources to compile the list of weekly Trump bullet points.  The stories I include are added as the week goes on, and they're saved after every update I do.  On Sunday evening, I call it a week, create a new entry for the next week's Trump List, and begin to edit the previous list down, fixing the insane amount of spelling and grammatical errors, and then adding fun photos and gifs to punctuate the list.  I usually have it all finished by Monday evening.  It takes me around 30 hours of time, per week, to finish a Trump List.

Blogger has a fun and exciting feature I discovered last night!  It seems that regardless of how many times you save an unpublished blog draft, say 100 times during a week, the blog piece is never REALLY saved until the blog piece is actually published to the blog.  I KNOW!  How helpful...

Last night, I decided to do an update on Trump List Week 37, before finishing up Trump List Week 36.  I'd already finished 2/3rds of 36's images and knew I could finish knocking it out in about an hour.  While working on Trump List Week 37, I realized I needed one of the phrases I use repeatedly on the blog, in this case:

"First Daughter and White House staffer doing...something(?) Ivanka Trump"

I knew I had it on Trump List Week 36 in multiple places, so I reopened that draft, copied the line, the blog stated all unsaved changes will be lost, I said "I've saved it over 100 times so I'm good," left Trump List Week 36, reopened the draft of Week 37, and successfully pasted the above line to Week 37's draft.  I worked for about a half hour on 37, saved and closed it, and went to finish up Week 36.  To my utter shock, Week 36 no longer existed.  In it's place was a new version of Week 37's draft, but only updated to the point a half hour earlier, when I pasted the above line to 37's draft.

I never copied and pasted 37 on top of 36.  I wouldn't have done that, especially after I'd worked so hard on 36.  After about an hour, when I realized, no matter my efforts, 36 was gone, I tried to figure out what the hell happened.  It's then I discovered I wasn't the only blogger caught up by Blogger's quirky save rule, where no matter how many times you save a draft, it's not REALLY saved until it's published.  I'm guessing some needle neck, jackass tech guy, WAY overthinking how to be hip and cool, thought saving drafts only encourages thoughtful well edited pieces, and 'we don't want that!'

Seriously Blogger, that's the dumbest damn thing I've ever seen.  'Save' should mean 'save,' not 'It might be saved.'

Week 36 was SO FREAKING GOOD TOO! Here's a sample of what I remember:

  • The stunningly horrible Trump UN Speech which included insults to foreign leaders, threats to other countries, horribly misplaced jokes, and guarantees of likely invasion of Venezuela.  It also featured White House Chief of Staff General John Kelly reacting to the speech in face palm mode
  • Trump made up a fake African country, Nambia, while addressing the leaders of the African nations.  This would be like someone coming to talk to the United States Governors and extensively referencing the state of 'East Dakota'
  • The admission former Trump Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort has been under FISA court surveillance since 2014, including throughout the election itself.  He apparently was offering updates on the Trump campaign to Kremlin associates, and even though the GOP insisted this validated Trump's 'Obama wiretapped Trump Tower' claim (which it didn't), the White House seemed to be bragging about one of their inner circle guys being surveilled under legal warrants for over two years
  • Watching Trump and the Republicans implode on Trumpacare, once again, as their promises of better coverage at a cheaper price are pretty much exposed as outright lies
  • Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke deciding to get the Department of the Interior more in touch with nature by putting a 'Big Buck Hunter' video game in the know, for nature!
  • Trump's insane rally in Alabama on Friday night which not only included his now imfamous 'Son of a B*tch' comment directed at African American Football players, but him insisting the media won't ever show a picture of the crowds at his rallies as CNN is actually showing a split screen of the crowd at his rally
  • Colin Kaepernick's mom, Teresa Kaepernick, giving Trump a crotch punch with the comeback, "I guess that makes me a proud B*tch"
  • Trump picking a fight with the NBA, by throwing a temper tantrum after watching a Fox & Friends story on how Stephen Curry didn't really want to go meet Trump, and un-inviting the champion Golden State Warriors to the White House.  The best response, of the many, came from Chicago Bull Robin Lopez, who responded "It's ok @Warriors. In a few months @realDonaldTrump probably won't be able to visit the White House either."  UP HIGH, DOWN HARD!
  • First Daughter and White House staffer doing...something(?) Ivanka Trump hiding behind her White House position to prevent from being held accountable for CLEARLY stealing another fashion designers shoe design to try to sell it as her own creation within her fashion line.  The lawsuit is slated for next year but she's saying she should be immune because of daddy
  • Once again, Trump is trying to force private businesses (the NFL teams), and an entire American industry (American Football athletics) to force their employees to forgo their rights as American citizens (Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Protest) just so he can brag about a fake patriotism standard Trump himself has created.  This is VERY similar to what evil dictators have done for the last 100 years.  It's noted the Confederate Flag, a popular motif for Trump's supporters, something Trump has actually said needs to be honored, is EXTREMELY anti-National Anthem and Anti-US Flag, and below is a photo, one of many I could produce, of Trump's own supports 'respecting the flag'
  • Trump is actually encouraging a financial boycott of an American industry (the NFL/American Professional Football) under a fake patriotism standard.  I can't ever remember any other president ever encouraging the American people to boycott an American industry, like Silicon Valley, online retail, big oil, or big box store retail, even though they could've created just as fake of patriotism standard as Trump has, to vilify said industries
  • Trump is fixating his narcissistic aggression on American sports leagues while the US territories of Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands have been devastated by Hurricane Maria.  The territories have been left utterly ruined, with no power, water, medicine or food. Trump has remained completely silent on the crisis
But the best entry of the week, where an informative story was matched perfect with an image seemingly custom made for the story:
  • Famed Primatologist and Anthropologist Jane Goodall compared Trump to a chimp.  She pointed out the similarities to Trump and how chimps, when competing for dominance, show a lot of bluster, swagger and intimidation to get to the top.  She implied the difference between chimps and Trump is when they achieve power, chimps will use their brain to form alliances to maintain power, while the ones only displaying swagger usually don't last long.  #ApeSmack
Dang it.  I will ensure this doesn't happen again.  Blogger, stop thinking too hard.  'Save' should mean 'Save!'  

On the good side, the money I would've used to promote the piece on social media will instead be given to aide efforts for the devastated island of Puerto Rico.  I encourage everyone to give if they can.


Friday, September 22, 2017

The Friday Link for 9/22/17

Keeping ObamaCare is very important.  Why?  People forget what healthcare was like before it.

Two points:
  • America's health system's problems, pre-ObamaCare, were not quality, but rather accessibility.  We had the greatest healthcare on the planet, but for many people, the financial challenges of treating loved ones put healthcare out of reach.
  • The US government has an obligation to step up and help our citizens when the private sector, charitable organizations and individual state governments are incapable of doing so, or are out right refusing to do so.  That's why President Obama and the Democrats had to step in.
Randy in Coon Rapids, after I pointed out Senator John McCain saved the Republican Party from itself once again by stating he was against the latest incarnation of Trumpcare, Graham-Cassidy, my regular conservative caller tried to make the argument the only good thing ObamaCare did was take away the ability of insurance companies to refuse to treat people by labeling their health problem as a pre-existing condition.  He stated, outside of that, ObamaCare needed to be fixed.  Putting aside the fact Trumpcare would allow pre-existing conditions to return as a valid reason to deny someone life saving medical care, ObamaCare did a heck of a lot more:
  • It dramatically lowered healthcare costs overall and made preventative care free
  • It required all health care plans to cover 10 essential heath care benefits, problems which prior to ObamaCare led to people going to emergency rooms 
  • It eliminated lifetime and annual coverage limits, meaning one serious medical problem no longer annihilated your healthcare for life
  • Children could stay on their parents plans up to the age of 26, covering 3 million people who didn't previously have insurance
  • Once they got the bugs worked out, the Federal and state insurance exchanges made it easier to search for plans
  • The Middle Class got tax credits on their premiums
  • It expanded Medicaid to people at 138% of the federal poverty level, insuring people who had no way to get insurance, but were making too much money to qualify for Medicaid in the past
  • It tried to eliminate the Medicare donut hole gap
  • It lowered the budget deficit by 143 billion
Those are some pretty damn big wins!  Did some people lose their healthcare because their employer decided to pay the penalty instead of offering a plan?  Yes, and some did so just to spite Obama.  Did some people insurance cost rise?  Indeed, but that was because they had absolute garbage insurance which didn't really cover them, so to actually make their plans 'health care,' they had to actually charge more.  That was the insurance company's dishonesty, not Obama's

Remind people of what ObamaCare gave us, and make sure everyone knows all of those benefits will be removed by Graham-Cassidy.

Fighting the good fight tonight is Jimmy Kimmel.  Here are his three monologs on healthcare, and his sensational calling out of Senator Cassidy for lying to him.

Remember, if your Christian, ObamaCare is the plan Jesus would prefer.

Have a great weekend everyone.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

The Death of the Red-Ass

The Minnesota Twins are having a much improved season.  The team is far more enjoyable than last year's squad, which flirted with being worst team ever in franchise history.  This year, less than spectacular, but steady pitching has teamed up with a consistent batting lineup to make for a winning team, and a legit chance at the 2nd wild card spot in the American League.  Even Joe Mauer is playing above average, having the best season he's had since moving to first.

I always, to a fault, have faith, but my gut feeling is the Twins won't win it all this year.  They might get super lucky and take out the best wild card team, but they're missing a key ingredient winning teams need for long term success.  The Twins don't have a Red-ass.

What's a Red-ass?  It's an affectionate term for the guy on a major league team who still plays the game because they love it like a ten year old, holding every other player on the team accountable to love the game as much as they do, regardless of where the red-ass hits in the roster, pitches in the rotation, or how much they get paid.  And, the red-ass HATES losing more than anything else!  You've probably had experience with a red-ass; the guy on the office beer softball league who acts as if it's game 7 of the World Series every time you go to play.  That's a common example, but where the guy over emphasizing winning the regional office softball trophy is kind of pathetic, a red-ass on a major league team helps the players remember what got them playing baseball in the first place.  They're playing to win!

It wasn't long ago where most Major League Baseball team's rosters were red-asses.  Even into the 70's, there were multiple red-asses on every team, quick to chew out a player who was perceived as not giving their all.  You didn't dive for a ball you could've caught? Expect to get yelled at on the bench.  You struck out in the 8th, leaving the bases loaded in a game you're losing?  Expect to get threatened for not delivering!  You have an error that cost you the game?  Expect to get a right cross in the locker room.

Red-asses have tempers, and have I mentioned they HATE losing?

There's nothing which dictates who on a team will be a red-ass.  Sometimes it's the best player/highest paid player.  Pete Rose, the cheater, was a notorious red-ass, even dislocating Ray Fosse's shoulder when he collided with the catcher scoring the winning run in a pointless, nothing but bragging rights on the line, All Star game in 1970.  Before he was corrupted by gambling and other vices, Rose would be the first to greet you coming into the dugout if you screwed up in a game, ready to chew your ass.

Torii Hunter was a red-ass.  He had no problem going after the less experienced players, like when he slugged Justin Moreau in the jaw to teach him how to be a better teammate (for the record, they're friends now and Justin went on to win the AL MVP afterwards. Thanks Torii!).  Hunter would also go after the resident superstar.  With the Angels, he and Albert Pujols nearly came to blows when Pujols usurped a players only meeting and tried to drive his own agenda without having all the facts.

Sometimes it's one of the lesser players on the team.  Mike Redman was the back up catcher with the Twins in the the first decade of the 2000's.  He knew how to run a tight ship too, chewing out players who weren't delivering.

Starting in the 1980's the rules for red-asses started to change.  No longer was it okay for the lesser player to get in the face of the team superstar or ten million dollar a year player.  I get it to a point.  You don't want some guy making the league minimum punching out your star first baseman, costing you wins, money and fans while the superstar heals.  Most teams don't have a red-ass anymore, and it shows.  Teams started purging their rosters of red-asses, and this purge was one of the reasons Hunter and Redman left.  It's probably a good thing because neither would have been too happy with Mauer's play at first base prior to this season.

To be fair, Hunter did sign a one year deal with the Twins to finish out his career, but he seemed to understand his job wasn't to grab anyone by the nape of the neck anymore.  Torii still had a lot of fire, including a DEFCON 1 meltdown, where he chucked equipment onto the field and partially disrobed after getting tossed from a game in 2015.

The Twins don't have a red-ass this year, and that oversight will cost them.  Having the player on the bench who'll make the other players accountable is part of the engine which drives good teams.  Without a red-ass, the team sighs and says, "I guess we'll try harder next time." That feels like the Twins attitude WAY too much this season.

It's been a good year for Minnesota, but one can only imagine what would've been if the Twins had that little bit of extra motivation in some key series this season.  Maybe we'd have picked up a game or two, becoming the masters of our own destiny, instead of looking like a team holding on for dear life, just so they can be a minor speed bump for the big boy teams.  If only we would've had a Red-ass to push this roster just a little bit harder.  If only...

Monday, September 18, 2017

President Trump, Week 35

Here's this week of mind numbing incompetence coming from President Trump and his White House for the week beginning Monday September 11th to Sunday September 17th.  This is likely not all of the Trump team's transgressions, but it's most of them.

(A Juggalo - more popular than Trump.)

Most of these infractions would've warranted a mocking press conference if the letter next to the President's name was a 'D' instead of an 'R,' and most of them would've sparked a Congressional investigation.  At least half this list would've been used by Republicans as validation for a Special Prosecutor, and a few of these would've EASILY justified calls for impeachment.  Instead, every Republican has decided to write pleasant reviews of the menu and service they received on the Titanic as it sinks.  The unwillingness of the Republican leadership to acknowledge something is seriously wrong at this point means they themselves are complicit.

Like a pro-Trump rally, lots of good parking still available!  Let's begin!

  • Starting off with a Bang!  The FBI is reportedly looking into whether the Russian Government funded news outlet Sputnik helped to influence the 2016 election.  This after former Sputnik Washington Correspondent Andrew Feinberg, who was fired in May, handed over a cache of e-mails to Yahoo and the FBI.  He was also interviewed by the FBI on September 1st
  • Trump says, in reference to Category 4 Hurricane Irma trashing most of Florida, leaving millions without power, flooding many major cities and causing billions in damage, the US got "a little bit lucky"
  • As predicted, three GOP incumbents have announced they will not be running for another term, choosing retirement rather than running with Trump over their heads
  • Pope Francis states that Trump can't be pro-life if he gets rid of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Act, DACA (the Dreamers Act)
  • Pope Francis also went onto call climate change deniers "stupid." The White House has numerous high level people, including Trump, who are climate change deniers
  • Appearing on Fox News on the anniversary of 9/11, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke was part of a discussion which tried to link 9/11 memorials with Confederate memorials
  • Trump's voter Fraud Commission has come back with its initial findings, and they point to Trump trying to find made up reasons to embark on a full fledge voter suppression act, one which will be targeted towards minorities, the poor, and Democrats
  • William Gardner, the Chairman of Trump's Advisory Commission on Election Integrity has suggested voter turnout would be much higher with poll taxes and literacy tests, even though, historically, those tactics were successfully put into place to limit the amount of voters
  • Gardner might not last long anyway as he is being asked to resign for insisting the election results for Connecticut were fixed
  • Ms. Texas tears into Trump at the Ms. America pageant, for his tone deaf, and inappropriate comments about the racists in Charlottesville
  • For the second time in the last two weeks, a Russian politician has made a comment which points to the Russians playing a far larger role in Trump and the election of 2016.  Member of the Russian governing body, the Duma, Vyacheslav Nikonov, stated while the American intelligence agencies were sleeping, Russia "stole the president of the United States."
  • Sarah Huckabee Sanders, White House Press Secretary, when pressed strongly on former Trump Advisor Steve Bannon's '60 Minutes' interview, went on the attack, smearing former FBI Director James Comey in an effort to validate Trump's firing of the Director for not being loyal enough
  • A Russian billionaire with close ties to former Trump Campaign Manager Paul Manafort has been released from jail but is likely going to extradited to the USA from Austria, according to his lawyer
  • Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in DC plans on suing Treasury officials over their lack of providing details of Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and his luxury obsessed wife using a government plane to fly to Fort Knox, Kentucky just so they could catch the solar eclipse
  • Lawyers for Trump had pressured him to remove Presidential Advisor and son-in-law Jared Kushner due to his possible ties to Russian involvement in the 2016 election
  • The State of California is officially suing Trump over his decision to end DACA
  • It appears the Trumpcare replacement for ObamaCare is likely not going to get another vote before the end of the month deadline, meaning Trump has failed spectacularly at what was a campaign guarantee
  • Steve Bannon also was very critical of the Trump campaigns numerous meetings with the Russians.  "I don't know why people had to have meetings with other countries."
  • Trump's likely nominee as the Administrator of the Pipelines and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, Howard "Skip" Elliott, is a freight rail industry executive with no pipeline or government experience 
  • Senator Diane Feinstein vows to have Donald Trump Jr. testify in public to the Senate Judiciary Committee "come hell or high water."
Republicans really need to read the next three entries and think about what they have done to this country.
  • Trump's 9/11 remembrance video did not feature anything but images of Trump.  No victims, no families of the victims, and no first responders.  The video was just repeated images of Trump himself
  • Trump, a man who insists Twitter is his primary source of communicating with the masses, at no point released any 9/11 commemorating posts until well past the time the 2nd tower, the north tower, fell.  His posts were at noon and 1 PM (for the aforementioned video).  Nothing at 8:46 AM when the first plane hit the north tower.  Nothing at 9:03 AM when the south tower was hit. Nothing at 9:37 AM when the Pentagon was struck.  Nothing at 9:59 AM when the south tower collapsed.  Nothing at 10:07 AM when Flight 93 was crashed into a Pennsylvania field. And nothing at 10:28 AM when the north tower collapsed.  Nothing
  • Trump did have some 9/11 commemoration ceremonies he attended, but to prove he's either mentally incompetent, or unable to allow anything to happen in his periphery without it being about himself, Bloomberg News reported Trump continued to talk during the moments of silence, unable to shut up as they were commemorating the victims of the attacks
This was his first 9/11, and he spectacularly failed in his leadership.  Republicans, you'd be openly weeping in the streets if President Obama had even swatted at a mosquito during a 9/11 moment of silence.  It's like you've all conveniently forgotten what actually happened on 9/11.  Or is it you're willing to step all over 9/11 victims, their families, and the 9/11 first responder's legacy to ignore the inexcusable behavior of your guy Trump...
  • The future testimony of former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer and White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus could get interesting.  Considering it has been reported Trump treated both of them like absolute crap, including a last second denying of Spicer, a devout Catholic, the privilege of meeting the Pope, for no other reason outside of Trump got his jollies by denying it, their testimony could get interesting
  • Trump officially names his 3rd White House Communications Director in the fist 8 months of his term, giving Hope Hicks the permanent job.  She had been the interim Director since Scaramucci left.  She is 28 years old and most of her previous work experience has been in modeling and helping to manage Ivanka's fashion brand
  • After President Obama brought our strained relationship with Iran to amicable levels, Trump is vowing to reverse it all, calling for more aggressive fighting with Iranian forces outside of Iran, and funding militant groups within Iran, I'm guessing for the purpose of installing a new Shah
  • It's reported Beverly Hills is taking a beating in regards to Trump's Unconstitutional Immigrant/Refugee/Muslim travel ban.  It's halted numerous tourists who only wanted to come here and throw obscene amounts of money into the US economy.  It has dramatically lowered the revenue streams of high end retail locations, like Beverly Hills
  • Trump Administration announces it is halting pollution control initiatives on Utah coal plants
  • Former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn has rebuked testifying to the Senate Intelligence Committee a second time because he's demanding immunity before he talks
  • As the country is dealing with the aftermaths of two major hurricanes, it's pointed out that FEMA has over a third of their leadership positions still unfilled
  • The latest rumblings from Robert Mueller's investigation into Trump/Russia points to Mueller indeed getting to the point where he's going for a knockout blow against Trump
  • White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders wants the Department of Justice to investigate former FBI Director James Comey.  Similar to the Administration's assertions President Obama wiretapped Trump, this 'investigation' is based on exaggerated claims and would waste tax payer money just to find him innocent of all allegations
  • In another sign Trump's election has irrevocably damaged the US's standing in the world, many countries are now opting out of including the US in negotiations on new trade, economic and military deals
  • It's common that most US Federal offices nationwide, and worldwide, hang the President's picture in recognition.  So far, Trump's image is nowhere to be seen in many federal buildings and installations
  • It's reported that Trump friend and advisor Omarosa is despised by most of the White House staff.  She apparently is counterproductive, "frequently derailing internal meetings with irrelevant...interjections."
  • The Trump campaign has begun handing over documents to the Mueller investigation
  • Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin is threatening China by insisting they abide with the latest international trade sanctions against North Korea.  What Mnuchin is threatening China with remains to be seen, as the USA needs China for trade far more than China needs the USA
  • NBC's Katy Tur, in her book recounting the election of 2016, recounts the time Trump, getting ready to appear on MSNBC, stopped and kissed her on the cheek, without any warning, as he kept calling her "little Katy"
  • Kansas Secretary of State who's running Trump's attempt at a massive voter purge, Kris Kobach, got massively smacked down in the committee's second meeting, when the Secretary's of State for New Hampshire and Maine absolutely took him to task for his unfounded allegations and his lack of understanding what residence standards for voters really are
  • The Republican plan to hijack President Obama's final Supreme Court nominee has been successful, as Trump Supreme Court appointee Neil Gorsuch cast the deciding votes to reinstate the Texas GOP's incredibly gerrymandered voting maps
  • A joint Congressional statement condemning White Supremacists is heading for Trump's desk, but so far it's unclear if Trump plans on signing it.  The White House is noncommittal 
  • It's revealed the Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, who is currently under a Department of Justice corruption probe, stayed at a Trump Hotel prior to meeting with Trump, but the White House says that's perfectly okay
  • Rep. Eric Swalwell, a member of the House Intelligence Committee is claiming Trump ally Rep. Devin Nunes is outright obstructing the investigation into Trump/Russia in the US House
  • House Democrats, getting zero support from Rep. Devin Nunes in the House Intelligence Committee, have sent Robert Mueller evidence that former National Security Advisor  Michael Flynn failed to disclose a $100 billion deal he helped broker between Saudi Arabia and a Russian state owned company.  He was supposed to disclose all contacts with foreign entities at the time, and he failed to disclose payments he received
  • In the first few weeks of the Trump term, Russia immediately offered up a complete return to normalized relations with the United States.  Although the initial offer seems to have not been accepted, the message from the US State Department is they're currently working towards that goal 
  • One of the biggest jerks alive, former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn's son, Michael Flynn Jr. is now formerly being investigated by the DOJ for his role in the Russian scandal, focusing on his work for his dad's lobbying firm
  • Even former White House Advisor, and Nazi, Sebastian Gorka, has no idea what the exact role of First Daughter and White House staffer doing...something(?) Ivanka Trump is in the White House
  • Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin requested the use of a government plane for his honeymoon, something which isn't allowed.  His request caused the Treasury Department's Office of Inspector General to launch a formal inquiry 
  • White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders stated what could be the most outrageous statement yet from a Trump official "[Trump] has done more for bipartisanship in the last 8 days than (former President) Obama did in the last 8 years." Obama's biggest political fault is he kept offering too many olive branches
  • Former National Security Advisor Susan Rice testified to a House investigation that she had outed members of the Trump Administration after it was discovered the incoming Trump Administration, in December, had coordinated a meeting with United Arab Emirates crown prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan.  Flynn, Bannon and Kushner all met with him without disclosing the meeting to the Obama Administration, something which they were supposed to do
  • Trump BFF Roger Stone is trying to get Trump to pardon the Bundy clan, the inbreds of the west, who occupied Federal land and threatened to kill federal agents, as well as local law enforcement officials
  • Trump and Speaker off the House Paul Ryan are apparently pushing the Senate hard to get rid of the filibuster
  • Sarah Huckabee Sanders says the sports network ESPN should fire host Jemele Hill for calling President Trump a White Supremacist, adding "I think this is a fireable offense."  It remains to be seen, after their own behavior, if anyone in the White House knows what a fireable offense actually is
  • Sarah Huckabee Sanders likely broke the law when she called for a private business (ESPN) to fire an employee (Jemele Hill) for Hill's comments about Trump being a white supremacist.  The law reads: [Executive Branch employees] are prohibited from influencing the employment decisions or practices of a private entity "solely on the basis of partisan political affiliation." YEP! She did break that law.  Someone should get Colin Kaepernick on the phone...
  • Also, considering Trump himself said there were good people who were White Supremacists, shouldn't the Administration feel Jemele Hill's comment was a compliment? 
  • As Trump is insisting we should pay billions for his new Mexican border wall, which will not stop illegal immigration, Trump himself is refusing to pay a court ordered $17,000 remittance to a Scottish man over a disputed wall in Scotland near one of his golf courses
  • In an effort to stop the leakiest Administration ever, National Security Advisor H.R.McMaster has ordered all government agencies to hold training sessions on why leaking information is bad
  • Trump goes on a late night Twitter temper tantrum, raging against Hillary Clinton due to her book.  I never remember President Clinton, 10 months after winning his two elections, taunting H.W. Bush or Dole, nor either W. Bush or President Obama doing so.  This is sad
  • To the horror of Republicans, Democratic leaders announce they've reached an agreement with Trump on a plan to save DACA.  Initially Trump acted as if there is indeed a plan, then acted as if there is no plan, and then implied he's open to a plan, before saying all plans are on hold. Art of the Deal kids!
  • Senator Chuck Grassley, Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, is drafting subpoenas for two FBI agents to testify, after the Department of Justice denied the Senate's request to have them testify. Reminder:  the DOJ said they would not interfere in the Russian probes
  • Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, during a softball interview on Fox and Friends, absolutely slaughtered the easy questions about whether or not there would be a new Mexican border wall, talking instead how Trump is currently building "sample walls." She did not commit to anything more than upgrading the current existing sporadic wall the US currently has on the Mexican border
  • Motel 6 hotels in Arizona are reporting all customers to ICE agents in an effort to help them uphold Trump's Unconstitutional Immigrant/Refugee/Muslim travel ban.  ALL customers.  Motel 6 corporate is currently in scramble mode
  • Allies of former FBI Director James Comey are accusing the White House of pushing a smear campaign against him, something the White House is clearly doing
  • After justifying her position by claiming she'd be able to influence her father's decisions, First Daughter and White House staffer doing...something(?) Ivanka Trump says it's "unrealistic" to expect her to influence her father's decisions
  • Trump says his tax plan won't benefit the rich when every analysis, including ones from the right, state his tax plan will overwhelmingly benefit the richest Americans
  • Trump keeps insisting the US needs to match China's 15% corporate tax rate.  China's corporate tax rate is 25%.  It's well documented.  There is no corporate tax rate in China at 15%
  • It's revealed Trump demanded Jeff Session resign as Attorney General after Robert Mueller was appointed as special council.  When Trump found out about it, he verbally started assaulting Sessions, calling him an idiot, with Trump adding Sessions was one of his worst decisions.  When Sessions handed in his letter of resignation, Trump, after persistent urging from other members of the Administration inner circle, rejected Sessions resignation
  • After Trump met with the sole African American Senator, Tim Scott from South Carolina, Trump only wanted to criticize the non-white supremacists in Charlottesville. He told reporters he said to Scott there were "pretty bad dudes on the other side also," referencing the non racists in Charlottesville.  He then continued to defend his "both sides" comments (where he said there are good Nazi's, KKK and racists) focusing all of his anger at the left leaning protesters.
  • Senator Scott, talking about his Trump meeting, stated the likelihood Trump is "going have an epiphany is just unrealistic." "[Trump] is who he has been..."
  • Even after his own Department of Justice, following Trump's wild goose chase, concluded the Obama Administration did not illegally surveil him, Trump once again insists Susan Rice, President Obama's National Security Advisor, illegally surveilled him
  • North Korea seems to be ignoring Trump's threats.  They launched another missile into the Sea of Japan
  • In what seemed like a staged event designed to pet Trump's narcissistic ego, Trump, while feeding Hurricane victims, complained the food service gloves did not fit him, and ripped them off.  If the gloves don't fit, Trump's a twit!
  • Trump dodges the question of whether two major hurricanes causing hundreds of billions of dollars in damage could be related to climate change by insisting the US is regularly barraged with much larger hurricanes.  1) We aren't and 2) this contradicts Trump's comments about the size and scope of these hurricanes, particularity comments he made about Irma, where he called it "largest ever recorded" "of epic proportion" and "they've never seen a category [storm] like this"
  • Trump now says he supports a deal to help Dreamers affected by his DACA decision
  • After London saw another terrorist strike, Trump tweeted "Another attack in London by a loser terrorist", and encouraged London to be "proactive and nasty!"  The United Kingdom is an ally
  • UK Prime Minister Theresa May basically told Trump to stop speculating about terrorist attacks to promote his own personal agenda
  • Trump took a swipe at ESPN's Jemele Hill and the network themselves, basically threatening them if they didn't apologize for Hill's comments about Trump being a white supremacist 
  • Douglas Brinkley, a noted historian, stated he felt Chief of Staff General John Kelly and Attorney General Jeff Session are only taking Trump's abuse out of a sense of duty
  • Trump calls Senator Bernie Sanders Medicare for All Bill a "curse".  If by that he means affordable healthcare for everyone, then sure...
  • 29 Senators sign a letter urging Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos to keep Title IX guidelines in place
  • Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, defending his use of a government plane to fly to Kentucky during the eclipse, defended himself by saying he was from New York, and New Yorkers don't care about the eclipses.  Wha...?
  • All Republicans who think even if Trump is gone, Vice President Pence will still be there might want to think again.  Pence's name appears in a lot of managerial roles when it comes to people contacting Russia.  As multiple media reports have pointed out, it's time to consider Pence completely engulfed in the Russia scandal as well
  • On January 5th, prior to Trump taking office, Flynn, Bannon and Kushner met with King Abdullah II of Jordan to talk about private business deals to build nuclear reactors in Jordan, staffed and built by a Russian company, Rosoboron, who also happens to be an arms exporter currently facing US Sanctions.  This will ALL be illegal
  • More evidence is coming to light that Trump Advisor and son-in-law Jared Kushner's data operation Cambridge Analytica likely aided the 2016 Russian propaganda attack on US Citizens.  Numerous other White House Administration officials have been tied to Cambridge Analytica as well
  • Former Trump Campaign Advisor Paul Manafort's Ukrainian BFF, who also is very pro Russia, has had his communications intercepted by federal investigators thousands of times over the last few years
  • Special Investigator Robert Mueller apparently got a lot of eye-opening information from Facebook in regards to Russian meddling in the 2016 election, far more information than either the GOP House or Senate provided him, leading some to speculate if there will be a new avenue of investigation opened up
  • Trump declared September 15th National POW/MIA Recognition Day, with a statement "never forget our heroes held prisoner and who have gone missing in action." That's great, but people pointed out Trump repeatedly attacked John McCain for being a POW, something he has yet to apologize for
  • White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders doubles down on her illegal comments, where she called for a private company, ESPN, to fire an employee, Jemele Hill, for saying Trump is a white supremacist, which he is. Huckabee Sanders, this time, did this knowing it is illegal for her to do so, which makes her a fool
  • Kansas Solicitor Genreal Stephen McAllister is one for Trump's US Attorney nominees.  He once cited Dred Scott vs. Sanford, the unforgivable pro-slavery Supreme Court verdict, a verdict which was the fuel for the Civil War, in an anti-abortion case.  WOW!!!
  • It's pointed out Trump quickly blames Muslims for terrorists strikes in London, but still can't bring himself to blame racists/Nazis/KKK for the Charlottesville attacks
  • It's revealed the head of Trump's Election Fraud Commission Kris Kobach and many of the commissioners are using private e-mail addresses to conduct public business.  This would be illegal, and something all Republicans cited as an unforgivable offense less than a year ago
  • Robert Mueller has brought a money laundering expert into his commission as they are focusing on Kushner's foreign financial dealings
  • Conservative Newspaper Editor/Journalist Bret Stephens states Trump voters were "bamboozled and sold on bulls*!t"
  • After Trump's courting of racists/white supremacists/the KKK/Nazi's, the White House has significantly scaled back its annual gathering of the nation's historically black colleges
  • The California Assembly has called on Congress to censure Trump after his response to the Charlottesville white supremacist uprising
  • The California State Legislature also passed a sanctuary state bill, dramatically limiting the interaction local authorities would be allowed to participate in with Federal Immigration Officials, a direct rebuttal to Trump's immigration policies
  • Trump was introduced for a speech at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland by his wife Melania.  He thanked her with a firm handshake.  NO WAY this would have been overlooked by the right if it was the past Administration
  • It's pointed out Robert Mueller's warrant against Facebook is extremely significant.  To get the warrant, they had to show a foreign individual/agent/government had committed a crime in regards to the election of 2016, and that there is evidence of said crime on Facebook
  • On a weather perfect Saturday in Washington DC, the pro-Trump 'Mother of All Rallies' is taking place.  How's it going?  Arial photos of the event show a completely empty mall between the Capitol and the Lincoln Memorial.  The official Park Police estimate was 135-160 pro-Trump protesters.  It appears, from news coverage, the Insane Clown Posse 'Juggalos' rally was better attended, leading to hilarious news cut ins which were trying desperately to make the MOAR look anything but the utter failure it was
  • After the Wall Street Journal and the Agency France Presse reported Trump has decided to NOT withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord, the White House is angrily denying the report
  • National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster was flummoxed when asked to defend Trump's attack on Scotland Yard after the latest London terrorist attack
  • The Pentagon directly contradicts the President by telling transgender troops they can re-enlist
  • Trump is still refusing to release the full list of visitors he's met with at his private estate Mar-A-Lago
  • Former Trump Campaign Advisor Michael Caputo lashed out, complaining the cost of having to lawyer up for the Trump/Russia ordeal has cost him too much money, adding no one on behalf of his former employer has called to offer any help
  • A lot of focus has been on Trump's FEMA with the hurricane strikes, but an analysis shows the reason FEMA has operated as efficiently as it has was due to the diligence of Trump's predecessor, President Obama.  Since he took office, Trump's been, against recommendations, selling off the disaster relief trailers desperately needed for hurricane situations, even selling off 100 of the units a few days before Hurricane Harvey struck.  Because of Trump, the agency only has 1700 trailers left, and are having to put in an order for 4500 new ones, which will be at a premium price
  • Trump goes Twitter Nutzoid!  Is a bizarre series of Tweets and retweets from early on Sunday morning, Trump posts narcissistic fan art, calls Kim Jung-Un "Rocket Man" in a diplomatic tweet, mysteriously suggests shutting down internet access to fight terrorism, and posts a GIF of him hitting a golf ball purposely at Hillary Clinton, and hurting her.  He's still trash talking an election HE WON, 10 months ago.  Trump is a the saddest human being ever...
  • It's time for Trump's new game show, Stump National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster!  For the second time this week, McMaster had to Rosetta Stone a Trump tweet for everyone, pointing out Trump's reference to "Rocket Man" appears to be a reference to North Korean Dictator Kim Jong-Un
  • People have been trying to find out as much as they can about the Russian Lawyer who met with Trump Jr., Kushner and Manafort to offer the campaign dirt on Hillary.  Natalia Veselnitskaya is a bit on a mystery, but she does seem to have a lot of unexplained money for a woman who supposedly makes 50K a year; enough to buy million dollar Russian properties
  • During Trump's Twitter temper tantrum, one of the people he retweeted is lana del fenty, @glamourizes, a woman who has a history of posting extremely crude and inappropriate things.  We all know if this was ANY Democrat, DC would stop and demand 10 investigations, and apologies from every Democrat ever
  • It's also pointed out as Trump demands ESPN fires a host for calling him a white supremacist, which a rational person could deduce from Trump's own actions, he's laughing about posting a  Twitter tweet of a GIF encouraging violence against Hillary Clinton, where the punchline of the joke is "I HIT HER!"
  • Former Press Secretary Sean Spicer made a special appearance at the Emmy Award show, making fun of Trump's obsession over crowd size
  • Our UN Ambassador, Nikki Haley made excuses for Trump's inexcusable Twitter behavior, stating "he gets emotional'
  • Now Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is saying the US could stay in the Paris Climate accord, directly contradicting the White House claims they were leaving it, in direct response to stories Trump was thinking of staying in the accord, after Trump proudly announced the US was rejecting it...GOT THAT!
The 9/11 missteps are so freaking unforgivable.  How does a Republican Party which has done their utmost to wrap their imagery and marketing in the aftermath of that terrible day tolerate such a tone deaf, inexcusable display of self serving egocentrism, at a time when we are supposed to be thinking of others.  Then again, this is the same Republican Party who on 9/11 posted about how everyone needs to show respect for the First Responders while they themselves have been the main catalyst for cutting off the needed medical benefits First Responders deserve, benefits for health issues caused by being at 9/11 strike zones.

The Republicans are the passive aggressive antagonist in a Mamet story, the catalyst for everything bad happening, but they remain silent as they hope things will get better without having to do or say anything.  "Just keep your mouth shut and it'll all be fine..."

Remember #2018IsEverything!  Keep demanding accountability, and keep denying any of this is normal.  If this ever becomes normalized, we're screwed for more than just one Presidential term.  Let's make Trump the anchor the Republican Party have tied themselves to.