Friday, July 31, 2020

Disaster Don: US economy posts its worst drop on record

Mod: We're talking about a sudden and stark economic decline that makes Hoover's 'Great Depression' look like a minor cost adjustment. Trump is killing America.

US economy posts its worst drop on record (CNN Business link): The US economy contracted at a 32.9% annual rate from April through June, its worst drop on record, the Bureau of Economic Analysis said Thursday.

Business ground to a halt during the pandemic lockdown in the spring of this year, and America plunged into its first recession in 11 years, putting an end to the longest economic expansion in US history and wiping out five years of economic gains in just a few months. A recession is commonly defined as two consecutive quarters of declining gross domestic product — the broadest measure of the economy. Between January and March, GDP declined by an annualized rate of 5%.

But this is no ordinary recession. The combination of public health and economic crises is unprecedented, and numbers cannot fully convey the hardships millions of Americans are facing.

In April, more than 20 million American jobs vanished as businesses closed and most of the country was under stay-at-home orders. It was the biggest drop in jobs since record-keeping began more than 80 years ago. Claims for unemployment benefits skyrocketed and have still not recovered to pre-pandemic levels.

‘America’s Dying’: Russian Media Is Giddy at Chaos in the USA (The Daily Beast link): From the U.S. troop drawdown in Germany to Trump’s refusal to slam Russia over soldier bounties, Russian state media is jubilant over America acting in the Kremlin’s interests.

Thursday, July 30, 2020

Trump the Disaster: After less than four years of Trump the only things America leads in are death and devastation

Mod: Pretty good rundown of the numerous failings of the current president. In case you were wondering why he really wants to delay the election.

Trump The Disaster: After less than four years of Trump, the only things America leads in are death and devastation (Daily Edge link): Meidas Touch is out with a new ad—airing in Texas, no less—that slams Trump as a “disaster,” hitting him hard for mocking the disabled, praising racists, attacking the military, protecting criminals, sympathizing with child sex traffickers, and even attacking the Portland Moms.

But 30 seconds just isn’t enough to explain all the ways Trump is destroying America. After three and a half years of Trump’s utter incompetence and non-stop corruption, the USA has become both a laughing-stock and a disaster zone. In a new analysis of 35 OECD countries, America ranks a humiliating 34th out of 35 for raising a family, earning ‘F’ grades for Safety, Cost, and Time factors, with a D- for Health.

Beyond what’s covered in the Meidas Touch ad, here are 10 more examples of Trump’s broken promises and colossal failures:

1. Instead of the jobs he promised, Trump has presided over one of the worst economic disasters in American history. Since he became President, Factcheck noted on 17 July: 7.8 million jobs have been lost — including 7,100 coal mining jobs and 274,000 manufacturing jobs.

2. Instead of the “phenomenal” healthcare and insurance for everybody that Trump promised, we have an out-of-control pandemic caused by a total failure in public health leadership, surging hospitalization rates, a growing death toll—and the introduction of Trump death panels.

3. Instead of reducing the $19.9 trillion debt he inherited to zero within 8 years like he promised, Trump’s broken promises and failed policies ballooned the annual deficit and sent the total debt soaring to $24 trillion in his first three years. The Trump Crash of 2020 has exploded the debt further, to the current $26.5 trillion.

4. Instead of the “skyrocketing” 6% economic growth Trump promised that his tax giveaway to corporations and the already-wealthy would deliver, we are experiencing an 8% crash in GDP—even as Europe and Asia, under more competent leadership, suffer far less.

5. Instead of protecting Medicare and Social Security, Trump announced on Fox News in early March (i.e. even before the crash), that those programs would be cut if he won re-election. If Republicans retain power in 2021, it’s a given that those cuts will be even more brutal than Trump imagined just a few months ago.

6. Instead of making our cities safer, especially for minority communities, Trump has doubled down on racist rhetoric and racist policies—while failing to contain a deadly and economy-crushing pandemic. All of which has set the stage for the worst social unrest and urban crime statistics in years. Under Obama, Trump blamed violence in cities on the President. In 2020, he says the buck stops elsewhere.

7. Instead of the cleanest air and water, Trump has delivered environmental devastation—with deregulation that benefits corporate polluters while hitting vulnerable populations especially hard. As the New York Times reports, these rollbacks “could significantly increase greenhouse gas emissions and lead to thousands of extra deaths from poor air quality each year, according to energy and legal analysts.” While most of the world agrees we need urgent action on climate, Trump has delivered the opposite: polluted waters, dirty air and extreme heat, all contributing to an increase in wildfires, hurricanes and other dangerous weather events.

8. Instead of rebuilding manufacturing like he promised, Trump’s idiotic trade wars and tariffs plunged the US manufacturing sector into a recession for all of 2019, setting the stage for the Trump Recession which began in February of this year. As noted above, more than a quarter of a million manufacturing jobs have evaporated since Trump took office.

9. Instead of protecting “the gays” like he promised he would, Trump has waged an all-out war on the LGBTQ community in schools, in healthcare, in housing, in the workplace, in the judiciary, and around the world. According to Human Rights Campaign president Alphonso David: “The Trump-Pence administration is the most virulently anti-LGBTQ administration in decades.”

10. Instead of fighting corruption, Trump has abandoned any pretense of draining the swamp. He’s just filling it with bigger reptiles. As Robert Weissman, the president of ethics watchdog Public Citizen puts it, “One of the overarching narratives of the Trump administration is the total handover of the levers of government to corporations, and particularly the empowering of corporate representatives to oversee the very companies they worked for.” Even the worst pandemic in 100 years didn’t slow down Trump’s relentless self-dealing, emoluments and ethics abuses.

The list could, of course, go on. Because the reality is Trump has failed America every way imaginable. November can’t come soon enough. But it’s still a long way off. Trump’s attacks on the Constitution and our democracy will only escalate.

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Americans are suffering...Trump offers them a doctor who warns of sex with demons

Mod: Trump's gone from "Drink Clorox" to "Drink Alien DNA." Seriously, I can't believe even the MAGATS will swallow this. But you never can tell.

Americans are suffering. Trump offers them a doctor who warns of sex with demons (Washington Post link): According to the Mayo Clinic, endometriosis is “an often painful disorder in which tissue similar to the tissue that normally lines the inside of [the] uterus — the endometrium — grows outside [the] uterus.”

Not so, says Stella Immanuel, a Houston pediatrician and spiritual leader of Fire Power Ministries, a pronouncedly non-orthodox church. Endometriosis and other potentially dangerous gynecological conditions are the residue of sexual intercourse with demons, Immanuel teaches. These demons, known as “spirit husbands” and “spirit wives” (you might prefer their pet names: Incubus and Succubus) once walked the Earth in physical form.

After they drowned in Noah’s flood, however, they carried on only in non-corporeal form. They visit humans in sexy dreams, which aren’t dreams after all but spirit spouses making a booty call. The demons are responsible not only for diseases of the female reproductive system but also for male impotence, most financial troubles, marital discord and spiritual malaise.

This is not Immanuel’s only diversion from the medical mainstream. She also maintains that alien DNA is a component of some therapeutic drugs and that government scientists are developing a vaccine to prevent religious faith. You can find these and other teachings of hers on YouTube.

Or you can find Immanuel on President Trump’s Twitter feed, where she testifies to the power of hydroxychloroquine (yep! we’re back to that one) to cure Covid-19 and assures the public that masks are not important to fighting the pandemic. More than 10 million Americans heard her advice, thanks in part to the president’s amplifying effect, before Facebook took down her page. In response, Immanuel threatened to have Jesus unplug Facebook’s servers.

I guess there is no point in expressing my strong view that the President of the United States should not, in the midst of a deadly pandemic, pass along medical advice that undermines public health officials without good reason to believe that it comes from a qualified authority. The president doesn’t care.

Mod: Trump is nuts. More at the link.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Gallup Poll: Fewer Americans self-identify as conservative ... U.S. Conservatism Down Since Start of 2020

Mod: Everything seems to be falling apart all at once for the Trumpers.

U.S. Conservatism Down Since Start of 2020 (Gallup link):  Americans' ideological bent has shifted in the first half of 2020 with fewer people self-identifying as politically conservative in May and June than at the start of the year. There has been a corresponding increase in self-described liberals while the percentage moderate has been fairly steady.

In January and February, an average of 40% of Americans identified as politically conservative. This was up from an average of 37% in 2019 and was tied for the highest rate of conservatism Gallup had recorded in the past six years. This coincided with President Donald Trump being acquitted of impeachment charges. It also came amidst strongly positive economic signals in the form of near-record-low unemployment and the Dow Jones Industrial Average reaching record highs.

Nevertheless, the percentage of Americans identifying as conservative reverted to an average 37% in March and April as the coronavirus pandemic emerged. It fell further to 34% in May and June as the pandemic has worn on, Trump's job approval rating has tumbled, and the racial justice movement emerged as a national focus following the death of George Floyd.

Meanwhile, the percentages identifying as liberal increased from an average of 22% in January/February to 26% in May/June.

Mod: More at the link

Twitter Suspends Donald Trump Jr. for Tweeting COVID-19 Misinformation

Mod: Couldn't have happened to a more deserving creep.

Twitter Suspends Donald Trump Jr. for Tweeting COVID-19 Misinformation (Vice link): Twitter has temporarily suspended the account belonging to Donald Trump Jr, the son of U.S. President Donald Trump after he posted content that violated the company’s policies on misinformation related to the coronavirus pandemic.

The account will be suspended for 12 hours, during which time Don Jr. will be barred from posting new messages, liking or retweeting other posts. He will still be allowed to use Twitter’s Direct Message service to contact his followers. A Twitter spokesperson said this was not a suspension, that it was a "temporary lockout until the Tweet is deleted—not a suspension."

The tweet that triggered the suspension linked to a video that contains multiple falsehoods and dubious claims about COVID-19 and its treatments. The post was deleted and replaced with a message simply saying “this tweet is no longer available.”

President Trump also posted several tweets linking to the video on Monday night. While his account was not suspended, the tweets were also deleted.

The video showed a group of people dressed in white lab coats claiming to be from an organization called “America’s Frontline Doctors.”

The video, which was live-streamed by right-wing news outlet Breitbart, contained people claiming masks were not needed and that hydroxychloroquine was a “cure.” “Tweets with the video are in violation of our COVID-19 misinformation policy. We are taking action in line with our policy,” the Twitter spokesperson said.

Monday, July 27, 2020

Reagan Foundation demands Trump and RNC stop raising money off his image

Mod: Even the ghost of Saint Ronnie has had enough of Mad King Donald.

Reagan Foundation demands Trump and RNC stop raising money off his image (Raw Story link): The current Republican president is facing a legal fight from of his deceased predecessors, according to a new report in The Washington Post. “The Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute, which runs the 40th president’s library near Los Angeles, has demanded that President Trump and the Republican National Committee (RNC) quit raising campaign money by using Ronald Reagan’s name and likeness,” columnist Karen Tumulty reported Saturday.

Tumulty explained that, “What came to the foundation’s attention — and compelled officials there to complain — was a fundraising email that went out July 19 with ‘Donald J. Trump’ identified as the sender and a subject line that read: “Ronald Reagan and Yours Truly.”

Hilarious link
“The solicitation offered, for a donation of $45 or more, a ‘limited edition’ commemorative set featuring two gold-colored coins, one each with an image of Reagan and Trump. The coins were mounted with a 1987 photograph of Reagan and Trump shaking hands in a White House receiving line — the type of fleeting contact that presidents have with thousands of people a year,” the newspaper explained.

Sunday, July 26, 2020

Trump's Thugs are Sexually Battering Female Protesters: Portland Mom Says She Was Groped & Assaulted by Feds

Mod: So what's next for the Bunker Don Trump junta? I'm almost afraid to ask.

Portland Mom Says She Was Groped & Assaulted by Feds During Protest Arrest ( link): Jennifer Kristiansen is a 37-year-old Portland mother and attorney who was arrested while protesting with the “Wall of Moms,” a group of women who have joined protests outside of the federal courthouse in the Oregon city. Kristiansen told Heavy she was ripped away from a line of fellow moms by federal officers who did not have any insignias or identifying information on their black and camouflage uniforms. Kristiansen also told Heavy she was groped and assaulted by the officer who arrested her. She later learned he was part of the U.S. Marshals Service.

Kristiansen, the mother of a 12-year-old and a 14-year-old, was protesting at the Mark O. Hatfield Courthouse for the first time on Monday night, July 21, when she was arrested. Kristiansen had decided to join dozens of other yellow-shirt-wearing mothers who had taken to the streets alongside protesters who have been at the courthouse for more than 50 days supporting Black Lives Matter, calling for police reform and an end to police violence. According to CNN, the moms were spurred to protect the protesters after Department of Homeland Security officers sent to the city by President Donald Trump escalated violence against protesters at the courthouse.

Kristiansen said, “We were being pushed back, we’re walking backwards,” but there was a big crowd behind them. “We’re linked arm to arm, so we’re slow, but we are leaving,” she told Heavy. She said she was then pushed by an officer, who was about 6’2″ tall (she said she’s about 5 feet tall), with a baton. She then heard the woman to her left scream that the officer had hit her breast.

Kristiansen said she then used her arm that was free to put herself between her and the officer with the baton. She said if he swung again, she wanted it to be her arm that would be hit, not the other woman’s breast again. She said then, out of nowhere, another federal officer arrived. Both officers only had tags that said “police DHS,” no name tags or anything else identifying themselves or their agency, she said. “I’m a lawyer and even I don’t know what that means,” Kristiansen said.

“Before we go in, he pushes me up against the wall, facing the wall, and uses his left hand to cup my right breast,” Kristiansen told Heavy. “And his right hand to flip up my skirt and grab my right butt cheek.” She said, the “thought went through my head, ‘How much worse is this going to be?’ ‘Is this the day I get raped against the building?’ Then it was over and he was dragging me inside.”

Mod: Much more at the link.

Saturday, July 25, 2020

The Lincoln Project releases new video targeting Trump comments on Ghislaine Maxwell

Video Link
Mod: With the Trump Virus now killing Americans at a one thousand a day clip (link), Donald has decided to golf again this weekend. So in his unforgivable absence let's discuss this topic instead.

The Lincoln Project releases new video targeting Trump comments on Ghislaine Maxwell (The Hill link): The Lincoln Project, the anti-Trump GOP super PAC, released a new video Friday criticizing President Trump’s friendly remarks toward Ghislaine Maxwell, the longtime associate of Jeffrey Epstein who is awaiting trial on charges that she helped recruit girls who were sexually abused.

"I just wish her well, frankly," Trump said Tuesday when asked about the case at a press conference.

Trump said that he met Maxwell "numerous times over the years, especially since I lived in Palm Beach, and I guess they lived in Palm Beach."

"But I wish her well, whatever it is," he added.

Prosecutors allege Maxwell helped persuade and transport minors to engage in sexual acts with Epstein and others in the mid-1990s, and at times participated in the abuse herself. Her trial is scheduled to begin in July 2021. The minute-long Lincoln Project ad shows footage of Trump engaging with Maxwell and Epstein, who was found dead in his jail cell last year.

“It’s despicable to hear the president express sympathy for an accused child sex trafficker,” said Tara Setmayer, senior adviser to the Lincoln Project, said in a statement. “While the country continues to grieve unspeakable loss from the Trump Administration’s failed COVID-19 response, the President wishes an alleged pedophile pimp well from the White House podium. Shameful.”

Friday, July 24, 2020

In defiance of Trump, every player took a knee at Major League Baseball return

Mod: It is time for Donald to take his ball and go back to his bunker.

In defiance of Trump, every player took a knee at Major League Baseball return (Raw Story link): President Donald Trump has long complained about players taking a knee before professional sporting events to protest police brutality. But as Major League Baseball returned on Thursday night, every single player took a knee.

The protesters were started by former San Francisco 49’ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick in 2016.

Before the game, “BLM” was painted on the pitcher’s mound to show support for Black Lives Matter. Both the New York Yankees and Washington Nationals wore “Black Lives Matter” warm-up jerseys.

The first pitch was thrown out by Dr. Tony Fauci, 79, whose pitch was not a strike.

New ad


Thursday, July 23, 2020

Moscow Mitch: Kentucky voters reject every McConnell stance on COVID-19 relief

Mod: Moscow Mitch, he doesn't care about you, your family, or anyone.

Kentucky voters reject every McConnell stance on COVID-19 relief (Daily Kos link): The voters of Kentucky roundly support the key provisions of the HEROES coronavirus relief bill from House Democrats, and roundly oppose Sen. Mitch McConnell's push to reopen schools in the middle of the pandemic. That's what Public Policy Polling (PPP) found in a poll conducted July 17-18 in Kentucky for Protect Our Care.

This, by the way, was a group of 1,547 Kentucky voters who won for Donald Trump in 2016, 57% to 33%. That's 24-point margin for Trump. It's also about the same margin—56% to 31%—who disagree with McConnell's push to have kids back in school even as coronavirus infections continue to rise.

Likewise, a majority of Kentuckians support everything that Democrats included in coronavirus relief, all the things McConnell is fighting: 73% to 14% support increasing funding for testing and treatment for the coronavirus; 68% support increasing federal funding for Medicaid, with only 17% opposed; 66% support an additional round of $1,200 stimulus payments to most Americans, 25% are opposed; 65% support allocating $1 trillion to state and local governments to pay vital workers like first responders, health workers, and teachers, just 21% oppose; 57% support a 15% increase in food assistance to families and additional funding to pay for nutritional programs, just 27% oppose; 52% support creating a special enrollment period for Americans to sign up for health coverage under the Affordable Care Act, just 26% oppose. On every single issue, Kentucky opposes McConnell and Trump.

But where McConnell is really in trouble is standing with Trump on forcing schools to reopen. A 61% majority of Kentuckians trust medical experts more than Trump to make the decision whether children should be back in school. Just 35% of them think will be safe. They are also opposed to the proposal that school funding be withheld from schools that follow the advice of medical experts and do not reopen in the fall, 52% to 29%.

No wonder McConnell is so far behind Kentucky's Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear in approval ratings. McConnell is underwater by eight points (40-48) to Beshear's 19-point advantage with voters, 54% approval to 35% disapproval. That's nothing to his national numbers, though.

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Is President Donald Trump preparing to pardon accused child sex trafficker and Epstein pal gal Ghislaine Maxwell?

Mod: Could it be Diddlin' Donny is not interested in anybody hearing her testimony? Or seeing the evidence? According to Miami Herald reporter Julie K. Brown there is quite a storied history of Trump offering his "best wishes." Ghislaine would know that.

Is President Donald Trump preparing to pardon accused child sex trafficker Ghislaine Maxwell? (Raw Story link): President Donald Trump on Tuesday raised eyebrows by offering his best wishes to Ghislaine Maxwell.

Ghislaine Maxwell is in prison and a lot of people want to know if she’s going to turn in powerful people. I know you’ve talked in the past about Prince Andrew and you’ve criticized Bill Clinton’s behavior. I’m wondering, do you feel she’s going to turn in powerful men?” Trump was asked by a reporter. “How do you see that working out?”

“I don’t know, I haven’t really been following it too much,” Trump claimed. “I just wish her well, frankly. I’ve met her numerous times over the years, especially since I lived in Palm Beach and I guess they lived in Palm Beach. But I wish her well, whatever it is. I don’t know the situation with Prince Andrew, I just don’t know. Not aware of it.”

Julie K. Brown, the Miami Herald reporter who has been widely praised for her reporting on Jeffrey Epstein, wondered on Twitter whether Trump may pardon Maxwell.

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

ARG Poll: Trump Approval Falls to 36% - Disapproval Jumps to 60%

Mod: At the rate Donny Two Fruits numbers are collapsing he'll be in the 20's by fall.

American Research Group: Trump Job Approval Down ( link): A total of 36% of Americans say they approve of the way Donald Trump is handling his job as president and 60% say they disapprove of the way Trump is handling his job according to the latest survey from the American Research Group. In June, 38% approved and 58% disapproved.

When it comes to Trump's handling of the economy, 38% of Americans approve and 58% disapprove. In June, 40% approved and 58% disapproved.

Among Americans registered to vote, 36% approve of the way Trump is handling his job as president and 60% disapprove. On Trump's handling of the economy, 38% of registered voters approve and 59% disapprove.

Of the 36% saying they approve of the way Trump is handling his job, 61% rate the national economy as excellent, very good, or good, 49% say the national economy is getting better, 90% say they expect the national economy to be better in a year, 81% rate the financial situations in their households as excellent, very good, or good, 27% say the financial situations in their households are getting better, and 71% say they expect the financial situations in their households will be better in a year.

Of the 60% saying they disapprove of the way Trump is handling his job, 80% rate the national economy as bad, very bad, or terrible, less than 1% say the national economy is getting better, 30% say they expect the national economy to be better in a year, 78% rate the financial situations in their households as excellent, very good, or good, 4% say the financial situations in their households are getting better, and 16% say they expect the financial situations in their households will be better in a year.

Overall, 36% of Americans say that they approve of the way Donald Trump is handling his job as president, 60% disapprove, and 4% are undecided.

Navy veteran recounts being beaten by DHS in Portland: ‘If they’re going to gas moms, they’re going to gas vets’

Mod: Trump's stormtroopers beat an Annapolis grad and Navy veteran for simply wanting to discuss with them what they believed they were accomplishing. 

Navy veteran recounts being beaten by DHS in Portland: ‘If they’re going to gas moms, they’re going to gas vets’ (Raw Story link): Chris David was featured in a viral video of suspected federal agents in Portland beating and gassing him. David, a Naval Academy graduate, was filmed being beaten by Portland Tribune reporter Zane Sparling.

He was interviewed on Monday evening by MSNBC’s Ali Velshi about how he showed up trying to talk to the suspected Department of Homeland Security agents.

“That’s exactly what I wanted to do, was just talk to them and the thing that was so upsetting was that there didn’t seem to be any recognition that as a veteran I was even going to be listened to or treated any differently than anybody else — and that sort of makes sense because if they’re going to gas moms, they’re going to beat up vets,” David replied.

David also said he still does not know who the men are who beat him with batons.

Nancy Pelosi: Trump may have to be 'fumigated' out of the White House (Washington Examiner link): House Speaker Nancy Pelosi warned that President Trump should prepare to be "fumigated" out of the White House if he refuses to leave.

The California Democrat took a jab at Trump, who faces a tough reelection fight against presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden this fall, after he declined to commit to accepting the election results during an interview on Fox News Sunday.
"Whether he knows it yet or not, he will be leaving," Pelosi said Monday on MSNBC's Morning Joe.

"Just because he might not want to move out of the White House doesn't mean we won't have an inauguration ceremony to inaugurate a duly elected president of the United States."

Presidents, like other elected public officials, do not have the legal authority to stay in office longer than their elected term, but some critics have speculated that Trump may try to question the integrity of the 2020 contest if he loses after raising concerns about voter fraud. Biden himself said last month that he expects the incumbent to be marched out of the White House if he is defeated because he won't leave.