Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Sweet Home Alabama: Donald Trump’s July 4th MAGA Rally In Mobile Cancelled

Mod: Whoever in Alabama pulled the plug on the Cheddar Madman just blessed this nation with a true act of July 4th all American patriotism. 

Trump rally in Mobile’s Battleship Park cancelled amid concerns of ‘partisan political event’ (AL. link): Plans for former President Donald Trump to return July 4th weekend to the city many credited with lending legitimacy to his 2016 campaign after USS Alabama Battleship Memorial Park commissioners reportedly did not sign off on a plan for Trump to hold a rally at the Mobile site.

The commissioners were concerned that Trump’s appearance on Saturday “was going to be a partisan political event, rather than just a patriotic event planned for that evening,” Bill Tunnell, chairman of the commission, told NBC 15.

The commissioner told the station the body asked Attorney General Steve Marshall for an opinion on whether it would be acceptable for the park to hold the rally. Marshall said he could not give the group a formal opinion in time for the event but said the park can be used for political purposes as long as all parties and candidates have equal access, NBC 15 reported.

The park was the site of a campaign rally for 2012 Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum.

Rick Santorum was the, was the straw that broke the camel’s back. And that’s when the commission went to the no partisan politics open to the public,” Tunnell said.

Tuesday, June 29, 2021

‘Vogue is a joke!’: Conservatives furious First Lady Jill Biden is on the cover of top fashion magazine

ModVogue was going to use Melania but they didn't know where to find her. They asked Donald and he didn't know, either.

‘Vogue is a joke!’: Conservatives furious First Lady Jill Biden is on the cover of top fashion magazine (Raw Story link): Dr. Jill Biden, the First Lady, appears on the cover of the latest issue of VOGUE and conservatives are furious.

As First Lady, Melania Trump was never given the same honor, although she did appear on a VOGUE cover in 2005 in her $100,000 bridal gown. First Lady Michelle Obama graced VOGUE's cover three times, and as First Lady Hillary Clinton did once

So did First Ladies Eleanor Roosevelt, Mamie Eisenhower, Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy, Lady Bird Johnson, Pat Nixon, Betty Ford, Rosalynn Carter, Nancy Reagan, Barbara Bush, and Laura Bush.

On Christmas Day 2020 then-President Donald Trump expressed outrage that Melania Trump, as First Lady, had never been featured on the cover of any of the big four fashion magazines.

"To be on the cover of Vogue doesn't define Mrs. Trump," then-First Lady Melania Trump's spokesperson, Stephanie Grisham, said in 2019, "she's been there, done that long before she was first lady. Her role as first lady of the United States and all that she does is much more important than some superficial photo shoot and cover."

InStyle reported that "Grisham added that Melania wouldn't be available for a second cover, even if the invitation was presented to her. Instead, she's focusing on her Be Best campaign."But that was, at least in part, her doing.

Trump’s Lawyers Reduced To Whining At Prosecutors That Criminal Charges Are Unfair

Mod: I am not completely sure, but I cannot recall anything specific in the US Constitution that discusses the importance of letting Donald decide what is fair. 

Trump’s Lawyers Reduced To Whining At Prosecutors That Criminal Charges Are Unfair (PoliticusUSA link): Trump’s lawyers didn’t have an actual legal argument, so they whined that criminally charging the Trump Organization would be unfair.

According to The Wall Street Journal: Lawyers representing the Trump Organization made a last-ditch effort Monday to persuade New York prosecutors not to pursue tax-related charges that could come as soon as this week, arguing the company was being unfairly targeted, people familiar with the matter said ... The Manhattan district attorney’s office and New York attorney general’s office have for months been investigating whether Trump Organization Chief Financial Officer Allen Weisselberg and other executives received benefits such as cars, apartments and private school tuition and illegally avoided paying taxes on them.

Donald Trump’s lawyers can’t find a legal reason why he shouldn’t be charged, so the best that they could come up with is charging him would be unfair. For his part, the failed former president released a statement in which to the surprise of no one, he called the years-long criminal investigation a “witch hunt.”

The former president is already trying to spin the likely indictment to do the only thing that he knows how to do, and that is to play the victim.

An indictment of his business could be financially destructive for Trump. The former president is in deep debt and doesn’t have a lot of assets that are outright his.

There is no fairness clause when it comes to criminal indictments, and the fact that Trump’s lawyers have failed to make a compelling argument against an indictment of the Trump Organizations, suggests that things are about to get criminal for the former president.

Monday, June 28, 2021

Perjury Princess: Documents Show Ivanka Trump Didn’t Testify Accurately in Inauguration Scandal Case

Mod: The daughter/wife of #45 may have lied her way into some significant legal jeopardy and woe.

Documents Show Ivanka Trump Didn’t Testify Accurately in Inauguration Scandal Case (Mother Jones link): The Trump family has trouble with depositions. In 2007 testimony, Donald Trump was repeatedly shown to be a liar. In February, Donald Trump Jr. was deposed in the Trump inauguration scandal lawsuit, and on several key points, under oath, he provided false testimony. A review of documents filed in that case and other material obtained by Mother Jones shows that Ivanka Trump also testified inaccurately during her deposition in this lawsuit. 

The inauguration probe was launched last year by Karl Racine, the attorney general of Washington, DC. He has alleged that Trump’s inauguration committee misused charitable funds to enrich the Trump family. As Racine put it, the lawsuit maintains “that the Inaugural Committee, a nonprofit corporation, coordinated with the Trump family to grossly overpay for event space in the Trump International Hotel… The Committee also improperly used non-profit funds to throw a private party [at the Trump Hotel] for the Trump family costing several hundred thousand dollars.” 

In short, the attorney general accused the Trump gang of major grifting, and he is seeking to recover the money paid to the Trump Hotel so those funds can be used for real charitable purposes. 

During a December 1 deposition—in which she swore to tell the truth—Ivanka Trump, the eldest daughter of Donald Trump who was an executive at the Trump Organization before becoming a White House adviser to her father, was asked if she had any “involvement in the process of planning the inauguration.” She replied, “I really didn’t have an involvement.” Ivanka testified that if her “opinion was solicited” regarding an inauguration event, she “would give feedback to my father or to anyone who asked my perspective or opinion.” And that was as far as her participation went.

But this wasn’t accurate, according to the documents, which indicate she was part of the decision-making for various aspects of the inauguration, including even the menus for events.

Mod: More at the link.

Ivanka Trump Busted For Lying Under Oath About Misuse Of Inaugural Funds (Politicus USA link): Ivanka Trump is the latest member of the Trump family with legal problems after she lied under oath about her role in misusing inauguration funds.

Trump Org. attorneys have a major Monday deadline to convince prosecutors not to file charges

: Al Capone committed all kinds of gaudy crimes, but in the end they got him for not paying his taxes. Trump? He didn't pay taxes, either. 

Trump Org attorneys have a major Monday deadline to convince prosecutors not to file charges (Raw Story link): President Donald Trump's company has until Monday (June 28) to convince prosecutors not to file charges, the Washington Post reported Sunday evening.

Last Thursday, the New York Times reported that lawyers were working with Trump and for the Trump Organization to make the case that charges were not warranted against them.

"Meetings like these are common in financial investigations, allowing defense attorneys a chance to present evidence before prosecutors make a decision on whether to seek charges," explained the Post.

Their deadline from Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. (D) and New York Attorney General Letitia James (D) is Monday, two people familiar with the demand revealed.

A grand jury in Manhattan was impaneled to consider indictments in Vance/James' investigation, but no one has been charged yet.

"Prosecutors have shown interest in whether Trump's company used misleading valuations of its properties to deceive lenders and taxing authorities, and in whether taxes were paid on fringe benefits for company executives, according to court documents and people familiar with the investigations," explained the Post.

Those familiar sources told the Post that prosecutors are looking to charge the Trump Organization as a company and Allen Weisselberg, the CFO, for refusing to cooperate if Trump lawyers can't convince them otherwise.

Trump attorney Ronald Fischetti was the one who revealed that Weisselberg wasn't "cooperating and saying what they want him to say" in whether Trump had personal information about the CFO getting cars, apartments and other things as gifts from the company.

Mod: Today's video entertainment now follows.

Sunday, June 27, 2021

Republicans Trounced In Culture War As Social Liberals Now Outnumber Conservatives

: You can call me whatever, but I think at least some of the leftward shift in this country is due to Republicans taking the side of America's traditional enemies.

Republicans Trounced In Culture War As Social Liberals Now Outnumber Conservatives (PoliticusUSA link): For the first time since 2001, more Americans are liberal than conservative on social issues. 

Gallup: "This is the first year in Gallup’s trend since 2001 that more Americans have identified as liberal than as conservative on social issues. Although the four-percentage-point gap is not statistically significant, it represents a numeric milestone in the trend, which has seen Americans’ social views becoming more liberal over the past decade...In most years from 2001 to 2012, social conservatives had a clear advantage over social liberals — by 12 points, on average. Conservatives’ edge shrank to five points in 2013 and, since then, has either remained in single digits or social conservatives and liberals have been tied."

The Republicans have been trying to mix racism, homophobia, and xenophobia into a culture war. The Republican outrage over critical race theory is the latest example of how the GOP can’t win on policy, so they are attempting to divide the nation with culture wars.

The problem for Republicans is that over the past decade, the nation has changed. The receptive audience for a culture war argument is much smaller. The GOP sees the total number of votes that Trump got in 2020 and thinks that a culture war keeps Trumpism alive, but Trump lost by almost eight million votes.

The Republican culture war strategy is failing. America is becoming a more socially liberal country, and Republicans are being left behind by fighting a culture war that was lost decades ago.

Saturday, June 26, 2021

Has Melania Dumped Donald? Trump struggles to explain what Melania is doing post-White House

Mod: Nobody seems to know where Melania is these days. Especially her husband. All he has to keep him company now are some old magazine photos.

Trump struggles to explain what Melania is doing post-White House (Raw Story link): Former president Donald Trump gave a rambling explanation for his wife's activities since leaving the White House nearly six months ago. The twice-impeached one-term president called in to Newsmax TV for a lengthy interview, and the hosts asked what Melania Trump had been up to since leaving Washington, D.C., as President Joe Biden was sworn in.

"It's very funny," Trump began. "She's a very confident person. She was very successful as a model, she was very, very successful. and she is low key, but not actually low key, but she's low key and the people love her. For instance, I'm making a speech in Ohio, where they're going to have big crowds, they already have them lined up. We're going have big crowds tomorrow night, and when I go there, there will be many, many signs. 'We love our first lady, we love our first lady,' and a lot of times they show a picture of a high heel, a shoe with a high heel." 

That sent him off on a tirade about media coverage of his wife's outfit while touring damage wrought by Hurricane Harvey.

"That's when they scammed us, when she went to a hurricane, and in Texas, and we left for Air Force One, and she feels an obligation to be beautifully dressed representing the people of our country, so she walked into the plane wearing, you know, we're looking great," Trump said, "and then she had a bag and the bag was sneakers and a sweatsuit and all the things, right? And she got hammered for going to a hurricane that way, you know, etc., etc., and the high heels became a big thing, anyway."

"They love the first lady and the people, and you don't read that, you don't read that and they, the news loves to keep her out, and that's okay, frankly, with her it's absolutely okay. You understand, she's got a lot of confidence, got a lot of confidence." The hosts attempted to move on to one last topic as Trump's discussion about his wife unspooled, but he continued ranting about media coverage of her.

"She is very outstanding person and the people get it," Trump said. "You know she'd do those decorations at Christmastime. She'd do such a job and then get hammered. She did such a beautiful job around the White House, and with the Rose Garden, she rebuilt the Rose Garden, which was actually a much more difficult thing that it sounds and. It's now good for another 50 years, that included all of the wires and all of the everything under the Rose Garden that nobody sees. But it looks like the dashboard of a Boeing 757. It's complicated stuff, and she did a great job, and the people -- I can only tell you the people get it, and they really like our first lady."

Mod: He never did answer the question, though it is obvious that he misses her.

Pat Robertson: Critical Race Theory is a ‘monstrous evil’ telling Black people to ‘rise up against their oppressors’

Mod: They always have a big burning need to be hating on something.

Pat Robertson: Critical Race Theory is a ‘monstrous evil’ that tells Black people to ‘rise up against their oppressors’ (Dead State link): On the 700 Club this Thursday, Pat Robertson jumped into the Critical Race Theory debate, calling the academic framework a “monstrous evil” that is targeting American children.

“What is it?” Robertson said, referring to CRT before providing his interpretation. “That the people of color have been oppressed by the white people, and that white people begin to be racist by the time they’re 2 or 3 months old, and that therefore the people of color have to rise up and overtake their oppressors. And then, having gotten the whip handle—if I can use the term—then to instruct their white neighbors how to behave. Now, that’s critical race theory.”

According to Robertson, this is the way “the communist take over.”

They try to destroy the children,” he added. “It is a monstrous evil. …  And so the white people are supposed to feel guilty, and they’re supposed to have white guilt, and the people of color are supposed to cleanse them of that guilt by taking over. It is a monstrous evil.”

While the definition of CRT and how it’s applied remains disputed, Right Wing Watch explains it as follows:

Technically, critical race theory is an academic framework for examining the ways in which systemic racism shapes and influences national and social institutions. But to right-wing activists who refuse to understand this, it has instead become a catchall phrase used to attack anything they dislike. 

This has created a vicious cycle whereby right-wing commentators misrepresent what critical race theory is and instead attribute to it a cavalcade of hypothetical horrors that, in turn, generates panic and outrage among other right-wing activists over something they don’t understand.

Friday, June 25, 2021

Biden administration to sue the state of Georgia over its new voting restrictions

Mod: I know it takes some time to build these cases before launching a lawsuit, but it is about time anyway. Git 'em!

Biden administration to sue the state of Georgia over its new voting restrictions (The Washington Post link):The Justice Department will file a federal lawsuit Friday against the state of Georgia for its efforts to enact new voting restrictions that federal authorities allege discriminate against Black Americans, according to people familiar with the matter.

The legal challenge takes aim at Georgia’s Election Integrity Act, which was passed in March by the Republican-led state legislature and signed into law by Gov. Brian Kemp (R). The law imposes new limits on the use of absentee ballots, makes it a crime for outside groups to provide food and water to voters waiting at polling stations, and hands greater control over election administration to the state legislature. 

Attorney General Merrick Garland and Kristen Clarke, head of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, will make the announcement later Friday alongside others who worked closely on developing the lawsuit, including Associate Attorney General Vanita Gupta and Principal Deputy Assistant Pamela Karlan, the people familiar with the matter said. They spoke on the condition of anonymity because the action has not been formally made public.

Lawmakers on Capitol Hill have been briefed on the matter.

The action is the first major voting rights case the Justice Department has filed under the Biden administration and comes as Republican-led state governments across the country have been seeking to impose broad new voting restrictions in the wake of President Biden’s victory over Donald Trump last November. Trump has spent months waging a baseless effort to discredit the result, making false and untrue allegations of widespread voter fraud.

Mod: Georgia's Klanpublican Party cannot be pleased by this.


GOP Spits On Military: Matt Gaetz’s attack on Joint Chiefs is part of Republican war on US armed forces

: Wouldn't it be patriotic for our armed forces to restrict the viewing of anti-American Fox News on our military bases?

Matt Gaetz’s attack on Joint Chiefs is part of the GOP’s long-running attack against the military (Raw Story link): Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) was schooled by Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley on Wednesday, leading to a right-wing meltdown on Fox News. Overnight, the Republican-promoting network lashed out at Gen. Milley saying that his comments about race and being well-read was enough for the military to be defunded.

"Before this, there are no known examples of one of the two major political parties in the United States calling for defunding the U.S. military over a simple desire to understand what was behind an attack against the United States Capitol and Constitution, as Milley made clear," said MSNBC's Nicolle Wallace. "Nor is there any precedent for defunding the military over intellectual curiosity but here we are."

Paul Rieckhoff of Righteous Media, explained that this is probably not the best argument for the Republican Party to make.

"The culture war led by members of the GOP has now fully bled into the military," said Rieckhoff. "Our troops, military leaders under political attack not by ISIS but by radical extremist anti-American elected officials, pundits and other blowhards putting themselves and the personal agenda ahead of our country. Our enemies are celebrated." 

"Attacking a respected combat leader with integrity and honor by Matt Gaetz, who is a coward and probably should be in jail. This is how far it's gotten and political suicide for the Republicans and will send independents and moderates running from the Republican Party. This is their equivalent of defunding the police and it will have the same reaction from the middle of the country."

Kevin Baron of Defense One explained that this isn't the first time the GOP has decided to attack the military.

Most recently, the GOP may be after Gen. Milley, but a few weeks ago it was Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) attacking the military, implying that they are weak and "emasculated" because they aired an ad showing a woman trained on missile defense in the military having gay parents. Cruz has never served in the military.

Before that, Fox News' Tucker Carlson did a commentary also attacking the military because a pregnant fighter pilot was able to get a maternity fighter suit. The Air Force spends millions training fighter pilots each year, so cutting one out because she's "showing" isn't something the military does.

Mod: Much more at the link.


Thursday, June 24, 2021

Televangelist Jim Bakker’s Church To Pay $156,000 To Settle Case Involving Fake Covid Cure

Mod: Is a mere $156,000 fine really enough for this kind of swindling? Plus Jimbo didn't have to admit any wrongdoing. Apparently in Missouri fraud is a form of religious freedom.

Televangelist Jim Bakker’s Church To Pay $156,000 To Settle Case Involving Fake Covid Cure (Forbes link): Notorious televangelist Jim Bakker and his church in southwestern Missouri was ordered to pay $156,000 in restitution to viewers of his religious talk show who were convinced into purchasing a fake Covid-19 cure during the early stages of the pandemic.

Under the settlement, which was filed on Tuesday, refunds will be made to people who paid to obtain a health supplement called ‘Silver Solution’ in February and March 2020

Bakker and his company Morningside Church Productions Inc. are also banned by the settlement from advertising or selling the Silver Solution product “to diagnose, prevent, mitigate, treat or cure any disease or illness.” However, under terms of the agreement Bakker did not admit to any wrongdoing.

Missouri’s Republican Attorney General Eric Schmitt originally sued Bakker in March 2020 in order to prohibit the TV minister from selling Silver Solution — which came in gels, lozenges and liquids — as a treatment for the virus on The Jim Bakker Show, his streaming TV show. Schmitt’s suit said Bakker and a guest named Sherrill Sellman, referred to by Bakker as a “naturopathic doctor,” falsely claimed the product would cure Covid in 11 episodes of the show in February and March of 2020. 

In those broadcasts Bakker offered to supply the product to viewers who contributed $80 to $125 to the church. Bakker’s attorney, former Missouri Governor and attorney general Jay Nixon, earlier claimed his client was being unfairly targeted in the litigation. 

Nixon told St. Louis public radio last month that Bakker had a “First Amendment” right to encourage viewers to prepare their bodies for the “end times” and that Bakker was only acting on his religious beliefs. 

Nixon, who filed an injunction to halt the lawsuit, said the government was impinging on Bakker’s right to practice his faith. Nixon further claimed that the suit was an attempt to “crush” Bakker’s ministry and “force his Christian television program off the air.”

Mod: More at the link.