Friday, July 21, 2017

A Smörgåsbord Of Lies And Outrages

My forthcoming newspaper column:
Lies and outrages, coming so fast, there’s neither time nor space. Here are some surface-scratches.
From the emails “transparently” released by Don, Jr. after the NYT told him they were about to publish them: “… The Crown prosecutor of Russia … offered to provide the Trump campaign with some official documents and information that would incriminate Hillary … and would be very useful to your father. This is obviously very high level and sensitive information but is part of Russia and its government's support for Mr. Trump…” To which Junior responded, “I love it.” 
Said Sean Spicer: “… there was nothing as far as we know that would lead anyone to believe that there was anything except for a discussion about adoption…” (“Adoption,” understand, is code for removing sanctions.) The day after the offer, Trump promised a big announcement about Hillary, which never came. But he didn’t know about the meeting. Sure. 
Questioned during Trump’s “Made in America” week about Trump family products made overseas, Spicer replied, “That’s out of bounds.”  
Trump claims 45,000 coal mining jobs. The actual number is 800. Fewer coal jobs were added in his first six months than in Obama’s last six. Related: Ford is moving jobs to China. Carrier, another Trump brag, to Mexico. Harley Davidson, touted by Trump, just announced layoffs.  
Having campaigned on canceling the “terrible” nuclear agreement with Iran on day one, Trump grudgingly recertified their compliance with it.  
Having campaigned on repealing and replacing Obamacare on day one, promising better, cheaper, lower-deductible coverage, saying it’d be “so easy,” after multiple embarrassing failures Trump’s now for repeal with no replacement. Which he promised he wouldn’t. Or, depending on which tweet, it’s “let it fail.” Except they can’t “let” it fail: they’ll have to make it fail, as several R governors tried by refusing its Medicaid assistance. Everywhere else, it’s working as intended 
Trump would let millions of Americans lose healthcare coverage out of spite, an important lesson in today’s Republican governance. Repeal alone will be devastating. They don’t care. 
Trump blames everyone but himself for his healthcare failure. Remember when, referring to President Obama, he said presidents must take responsibility?  
The top government ethics overseer quit to protest Trump’s lack of it.  
DOD is renting space in Trump Tower for $130,000/month.  
The latest House budget funds Trump’s beautiful border wall for twenty-eight miles.  
While investigating imaginary voter fraud (“Find me something,” said Trump) they’re eliminating the Election Assistance Commission, which prevents it. Suppressing Democratic votes is the end game. In 2016, it worked well.  
Rachel Maddow, now leading cable news in viewership, has a PhD in political science. Hannity and Limbaugh are college dropouts. Coincidentally, a large majority of Republicans believe colleges are bad for America. Our free press, too. Since it’s only in the past couple of years, it’s pretty obvious what’s behind the switch. (I’m as disturbed by the extremes of “political correctness” on some campuses as anyone, but I also recognize what a small part of college it is.)  
It means Trump’s and his party’s attacks on education and science (and criticism) are working. On Republicans. Time was, that party understood the importance of public education; understood why America’s founders did, too. Now they consider it a threat to their agenda, and it’s no mystery why. Same with labeling news they don’t like as fake, while producing a steady stream of fake news themselves. Like pretending, despite Trump’s sons bragging that Russian money is an “outsize” part of Trump’s businesses, there’s no connection between him and Russia.  
Following the money, which Robert Mueller is doing despite Trump’s attempts to discredit him, should reveal the depth of it, and why Trump seems to favor Russian interests. The role of Russian oligarchs and criminals in his past businesses isn’t in doubt. Is it coincidence that the government’s solid case against Russian money laundering through American businesses including Trump’s was settled for a pittance, right after he took office, and after firing the US Attorney leading the prosecution? For a compelling discussion of the preceding with someone who knows, read this. Trumpists: reject it as fake while you still can. Like the continuing revelations of who was at “that” meeting, truth will out. Unknown is whether the Foxified will ever believe it.              
[Image source]


  1. The link in your closing paragraph is an interesting read. The interviewee's emphasis on Trump's financial history with the Russians makes sense. I think he's too quick to paint the Russian threat to our country into the background because it strengthens his argument. I think they dovetail nicely.

    Trump's history is something I've been thinking about lately, specifically what motivated him to run for president. I used to think that a key factor was his embarrassing take-down by Obama at that White House Correspondents Dinner. That certainly helped. But was it actually the Russians who steered him to run? It could have been done indirectly through Manafort. A promise to forgive some of Trump's debt together with hints if "help" and perhaps promises of greater wealth would have been a powerful incentive. The cherry on top of that is a close relationship with (we call it manipulation by) Putin.

  2. Right. And the corollary question is why Putin was, apparently, so keen to see Trump in office. That link suggests the answer is less about Putin than the oligarchs around him. I still think it's likely they (Putin, et al) have stuff on Trump, holding his debt for sure, but maybe much more compromising, such that they think they can get him to do what they want whenever they want it. I hope that sooner or later, with the help of Mueller, most of it will eventually come out.

  3. Non stop crappola from the out-house! Sean quits, lead lawyer on defense team quits, threats to remove Rosenstein, Mueller, and anyone who won't stop looking into this joke of a president, leads to authenticity of Russian's paying Drumph's debt's to secure their standing in a corrupt perversion of an election. I believe you are putting the puzzle pieces together in an upstanding way, Doc. Thanks again. Fonzirelli


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