Thursday, March 31, 2022

Russian Newscaster Calls for US Regime Change to Install ‘Their Partner’ Trump as President Again

Mod: How about we do them one better? Let's unselfishly send 'their partner' to Moscow so they can enjoy his company all of the time. 

Russian Newscaster Calls for US Regime Change to Install ‘Their Partner’ Trump as President Again (Political Flare link): To the extent that Putin had any redeeming value on the world stage or the respect of any other legitimate leader (Countries like Japan, South Korea, Canada, U.K., Germany, etc) prior to invading Ukraine – a second time, this year, he had very little and very limited to certain policy areas. Putin has now blown up not only whatever value the world saw in him and he’s done it in a way to guarantee that none, none, is ever coming back.

So long as he is the head of the Russian government, he – and Russia (somewhat sadly) will be shunned and punished in an ongoing manner. 

It has been obvious since at least 2015 that Russia preferred one American party over the other. Given that Russia was an adversary working against American interests even at the time, this should not have been a badge of honor and yet the Republicans acted as though it was nothing. Does it need to be said? When a foreign adversary wholly favors your party over the other, there is a problematic reason?

And then Trump came along and from the beginning it was clear, he was pro-Russia and proud of it. “Wouldn’t it be great if we got along with Russia?” Yes, it would. But it would require the Russians to change, not the United States, and they could have started by pulling out of Crimea. Under Trump, it was reversed. It was open, unrepentant. Eight Republican Senators spent their 2018 Fourth of July in Moscow. Goodwill trips are fine but by definition, goodwill trips involve representatives from both parties. They didn’t want both parties. It got so bad that MAGAs wore shirts, I’d rather be Russian than a Democrat, unaware that they were much closer to Russian in their outlook on other Americans.

Now, Russia has nowhere to turn. The world holds them out as a pariah. But maybe one person would give them a shot. Maybe one person could convince his followers that Russia “might” have had a good reason to invade Ukraine or at least an understandable one. They need a leader like Putin, one that can say anything and enough people will believe him.

They need Trump and now they’re calling for him.

You will not see that on Hannity. You will probably not see it on Tucker. And Trump? Well, it is flattering, maybe he warms up a bit. He never did demand that Putin turnaround. He only said it was horrible.

We’ll see. We do know that Putin will never make a comeback outside – perhaps, the Arabian peninsula or the American MAGA-Right.

Wednesday, March 30, 2022

'Canceling' Russia: Why Putin, Trump and Tucker Carlson parrot the same 'culture war' rhetoric

Mod: Different zoos, same damn monkeys.

'Canceling' Russia: Robert Reich explains why Putin, Trump and Tucker Carlson parrot the same 'culture war' rhetoric (AlterNet link): When President Vladimir Putin’s words are translated into English from Russian, his rhetoric sounds a lot like the rhetoric that comes from MAGA Republicans in the United States — and according to liberal economist Robert Reich, that is no coincidence. In an op-ed published by The Guardian on March 29, Reich explains why rhetorically, Putin, former U.S. President Donald Trump and Fox NewsTucker Carlson sound so much alike.

“In a speech delivered last Friday from his office in the Kremlin,” Reich observes, “Putin criticized the West’s ‘cancel culture,’ which, he charged, is ‘canceling’ Russia — ‘an entire thousand-year-old country, our people.’ It was the third time in recent months Putin has blasted the so-called ‘cancel culture,’ which is exactly what Trump, Tucker Carlson, and the Republican Party have blasted for several years.”

Reich recalls that during his acceptance speech at the 2020 Republican National Convention, Trump told fellow Republicans, “The goal of cancel culture is to make decent Americans live in fear of being fired, expelled, shamed, humiliated and driven from society as we know it.”

The 75-year-old Reich, who served as secretary of labor for the Clinton Administration during the 1990s, adds that Carlson “has charged that liberals have been trying to "cancel everything from Space Jam to the Fourth of July.”

Another thing Putin has in common with MAGA Republicans, according to Reich, is a “fixation on transgender and gay people.”

Republican state bills aimed at limiting LGBTQ rights or discussion in schools are soaring,” Reich observes. “Last fall — months before Texas’ Republican Gov. Greg Abbott threatened to criminalize parents who give their transgender children gender-affirming care — Putin argued that teaching children about different gender identities was ‘on the verge of a crime against humanity.’”

By obsessing over culture war subjects, Reich stresses, Putin in Russia and Trump and Carlson in the U.S. are able to “distract attention from the systemic economic looting that oligarchs have been undertaking, leaving most people poor and anxious.”

Reich writes, “Reduced to basics, today’s oligarchs and strongmen — along with their mouthpieces and lackeys — are trying to justify their wealth and power by attacking liberal values that have shaped the West… Ultimately, the oligarchs and strongmen will lose. Putin won’t succeed in subduing Ukraine, Trump won’t be reelected president, and Carlson and his ilk won’t persuade Americans to give up on American ideals. But the culture wars won’t end anytime soon, because so much wealth and power have consolidated at the top of America, Russia, and elsewhere around the world that anti-liberal forces have risen to justify it.”

Tuesday, March 29, 2022

'I'm not walking anything back': Biden says he doesn't regret saying Putin has to go

Mod: I have no problem with anything Joe Biden said here. He's right. If I was president I'd have sent the drone weeks ago. 

'I'm not walking anything back': Biden says he doesn't regret saying Putin has to go (Raw Story link): President Joe Biden said on Monday he doesn't regret saying Russian President Vladimir Putin shouldn't remain in power -- but he emphasized that his words did not signal a policy change.

The Biden administration sought to walk back the president's statement over the weekend when he said, "For God's sake, [Putin] cannot remain in power," as they feared it would lead Putin to conclude the United States' goal was now to enact regime change in Russia. When asked about this on Monday, however, Biden explained why he said what he did about Putin.

"I'm not walking anything back," Biden said. "The fact of the matter is, I was expressing moral outrage I felt toward the way Putin is dealing... the actions of this man, just brutality. Half the children of Ukraine, I had just come from being with those families." Biden then pivoted to saying that American policy toward Russian leadership had not changed.

"But I want to make it clear, I wasn't then, nor am I now, articulating a policy change," he said. "I was expressing moral outrage I feel and I make no apologies."

'You disagree, comrade?' GOP shredded after bashing Biden for saying Putin shouldn't stay in power
(Raw Story link): The Republican Party is drawing criticism after its "research" Twitter account posted a video of President Joe Biden reaffirming that Vladimir Putin has no business being in power. It prompted many to ask if they were posting it as a criticism because the GOP believes Putin should stay in power.

"He has killed thousands of women be and children. He has put them in a position of starving, kidnapped them, taking them back to Russia. And suddenly Republicans are getting concerned about this particular statement?" said former Secretary William Cohen to CNN about Putin

Monday, March 28, 2022

Cruz You Lose: GOP Critics of Jackson’s Child Sex Abuse Sentences Backed Judges With Similar Records

Mod: GOP Senators Cruz, Hawley, Cotton and Graham all voted to confirm judges who gave sentencing leniency to child sex abusers.

Critics of Jackson’s Child Sex Abuse Sentences Backed Judges With Similar Records (New York Times link): Several Republican senators repeatedly and misleadingly suggested during this week’s Supreme Court confirmation hearings that Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson had given uncommonly lenient sentences to felons convicted of child sex abuse crimes.

But all of the Republican critics had previously voted to confirm judges who had given out prison terms below prosecutor recommendations, the very bar they accused Judge Jackson of failing to clear.

Just 30 percent of offenders who possessed or shared images of child sex abuse received a sentence within the range suggested by nonbinding federal guidelines in the 2019 fiscal year, and 59 percent received a sentence below the guideline range. And in general, it is not uncommon for judges to impose shorter sentences than what prosecutors have recommended.

“I listed these seven cases in which you had discretion and you did not follow the prosecutor’s recommendation or the sentencing guidelines,” Senator Josh Hawley, Republican of Missouri, said at Judge Jackson’s hearing on Tuesday. “I’m questioning how you used your discretion in these cases.”

Mr. Hawley’s point was echoed by three of his Republican colleagues: Senators Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Tom Cotton of Arkansas and Ted Cruz of Texas. Mr. Cruz said the sentences imposed by Judge Jackson in cases involving images of child sex abuse were 47.2 percent less than the prosecutor’s recommendations on average.

“You always were under the recommendation of the prosecutor,” Mr. Graham told the judge on Wednesday. “I think you’re doing it wrong, and every judge who does what you’re doing is making it easier for the children to be exploited.”

But Mr. Hawley, Mr. Graham, Mr. Cotton and Mr. Cruz all voted to confirm judges nominated by President Donald J. Trump to appeals courts even though those nominees had given out sentences lighter than prosecutor recommendations in cases involving images of child sex abuse. Mr. Graham had also voted to confirm Judge Jackson to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in 2021 in spite of the sentencing decisions she had made as a district judge.

Mod: More at the link.

Sunday, March 27, 2022

Benedict Donald: Trump Lauds Putin, Xi and Kim Jong Un as ‘Smart’ and ‘Tough’ While Bashing US Generals

: Donny was loose yesterday feeding unvarnished treason to his brain damaged faithful.
 Trump Lauds Putin, Xi and Kim Jong Un as ‘Smart’ and ‘Tough’ While Bashing US Generals: ‘Where the Hell’ Are Our ‘Pattons?!’ (Media-ITE link): Former President Donald Trump lauded Vladimir Putin, Xi Jinping, and Kim Jong Un while going after the top ranks of the U.S. Armed Forces.

Speaking at a rally in Commerce, GA on Saturday, the former president noted that he played a clip from the movie Patton ahead of his address because he wanted to make a statement about the current brass of the U.S. military. “Where the hell are our General Pattons?!” Trump said. He went on to attack one general in particular, Gen. Mark Milley — the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

From there the former president praised Putin, Xi, and Kim Jong Un — recalling fondly his two summits with the latter. “He’s a smart guy, he’s a tough guy,” Trump said of the North Korean leader. On Xi, Trump remarked, “he runs 1.5 billion people with an iron fist. Yeah, I think he’s pretty smart.”And on the Russian leader, Trump mused, “they ask me, ‘Is Putin smart?’ Yeah, Putin’s smart.”

: As it is with everything Putin, his war in Ukraine has been a general disaster.  Russian generals are getting killed at an extraordinary rate (The Washington Post link): The war in Ukraine is proving extraordinarily lethal for Russian generals, the gray men bedecked in service medals, who are being aggressively targeted by Ukrainian forces and killed at a rate not seen since World War II.

Ukrainian officials say their forces have killed seven generals on the battlefield, felled by snipers, close combat and bombings.

If true, the deaths of so many generals, alongside more senior Russian army and naval commanders — in just four weeks of combat — exceeds the attrition rate seen in the worst months of fighting in the bloody nine-year war fought by Russia in Chechnya, as well as Russian and Soviet-era campaigns in Afghanistan, Georgia and Syria.

“It is highly unusual,” said a senior Western official, briefing reporters on the topic, who confirmed the names, ranks and “killed in action” status of the seven. 

In all, at least 15 senior Russian commanders have been killed in the field, said Markiyan Lubkivsky, a spokesperson for the Ukraine Ministry of Defense.

NATO officials estimated earlier this week that as many as 15,000 Russian troops have been killed in four weeks of war, a very high number. Russia has offered a far lower figure, reporting Friday that only 1,351 of its fighters had died.

New research on Trump voters: They're not the sharpest tools in the box (Salon link): The United States is experiencing an existential democracy crisis, with leading Republicans and millions of their voters and supporters either tacitly or explicitly embracing authoritarianism or fascism. Democrats, for the most part, have not responded with the urgency required to save America's democracy from the rising neofascist tide.

Low levels of cognitive sophistication may lead people to embrace simple cognitive shortcuts, like stereotypes and prejudices that were amplified by the Trump campaign. Additionally, the simple linguistic style presented by Trump may have appealed to voters with limited education and cognitive sophistication. Beginning with [T.W.] Adorno's classic study of the authoritarian personality, empirical works have linked low levels of cognitive sophistication with right-wing orientations.

Mod: More at all of those links.

Saturday, March 26, 2022

Tap Dancing Vladimir Loser: Russia reframes war goals as Ukrainians advance near Kyiv

Mod: Is Putie getting his Trump on as he tries to talk around his devastating defeat in Ukraine? Will he now be asking for an audit?

Russia reframes war goals as Ukrainians advance near Kyiv (Reuters link): In a scaled-back formulation of its war goals, Russia said on Friday that the first phase of its military operation was mostly complete and it would focus on completely "liberating" Ukraine's breakaway eastern Donbass region.

The announcement appeared to indicate that Moscow may be switching to more limited objectives after running into fierce Ukrainian resistance in a month of war.

The defence ministry said Russian-backed separatists now controlled 93% of Ukraine's Luhansk region and 54% of the Donetsk region. They jointly make up the Donbass.

"The main objectives of the first stage of the operation have generally been accomplished," Sergei Rudskoi, head of the Russian General Staff's Main Operational Directorate, said in a speech.

"The combat potential of the Armed Forces of Ukraine has been considerably reduced, which ... makes it possible to focus our core efforts on achieving the main goal, the liberation of Donbass."

A senior diplomatic source in Moscow described it as a face-saving move and possible prelude to a climb-down by Russia. Its forces have become bogged down and failed to take any major city since invading Ukraine from the north, east and south on Feb. 24.

Mod: In case you are wondering why the Putinists are losing, check out the video below.

Friday, March 25, 2022

Joe Biden Shows The World That He Still Owns Trump

: All Donny Two-Fruits has now is his bullshit. The President of the United States is not at all impressed.

Joe Biden Shows The World That He Still Owns Trump (PoliticusUSA link): President Biden was asked at his press conference in Europe if he fears Trump returning and undoing his policies, and the President showed his total ownership of Trump.

It was the last part of Biden’s answer that was telling:

The point is the first G7 meeting I attended, like the one I did today, was in Great Britain. I sat down and said America is back. One of my counterparts, colleagues, said, “For how long? ” I don’t blame or criticize anyone for asking that question, but the next election I would be very fortunate if I had the same man running against me. 

Biden has no fear of running against Trump, and his remarks were intended to tell US allies that they also should not worry about the failed former twice impeached President returning and turning American foreign policy back into a dumpster fire.

Joe Biden owns Donald Trump. The President knows it. Trump knows it. Donald Trump was rightly afraid and obsessing over Joe Biden challenging him for years. Like any fake, Trump is scared of authenticity.

The domestic political climate should look much different in 2024 than it does today, and if Donald Trump is the Republican nominee, President Biden should feel confident about his odds of winning a second term.

ModHillary Clinton trashes Trump with an ad showing him kissing up to dictators.

Thursday, March 24, 2022

Manhattan Prosecutor Who Resigned Says Trump Is Guilty Of Numerous Felonies

Mod: You have to wonder how they got to Bragg.

Manhattan Prosecutor Who Resigned Says Trump Is Guilty Of Numerous Felonies (PoliticusUSA link): Former Manhattan Prosecutor Mark Pomerantz said in his resignation letter that Trump is guilty of numerous felonies. The New York Times obtained the resignation letter and reported:

One of the senior Manhattan prosecutors who investigated Donald J. Trump believed that the former president was “guilty of numerous felony violations” and that it was “a grave failure of justice” not to hold him accountable, according to a copy of his resignation letter.

Mr. Pomerantz and Mr. Dunne planned to charge Mr. Trump with falsifying business records, specifically his annual financial statements — a felony in New York State.

Mr. Bragg
’s predecessor, Cyrus R. Vance Jr., had decided in his final days in office to move toward an indictment, leaving Mr. Trump just weeks away from likely criminal charges.

Bragg’s decision not to indict Trump could come back to haunt the nation if the twice impeached failed former president ever finds his way back into power.

The documents and evidence are in the possession of prosecutors. Publicly reported information makes it clear that Trump was inflating his assets to get loans, and deflating the same assets to avoid paying taxes.

Trump was engaged in felonious behavior, and if the DA is too scared of losing to prosecute him then Manhattan needs a better DA. An indictment of Trump would have been a circus. It would have rivaled the OJ Simpson trial as the trial of the century.

The decision not to pursue an indictment is both mystifying and enraging.

Wednesday, March 23, 2022

Kid Rock Claims Trump Asked Him for Foreign Policy Advice on ISIS and North Korea

Mod: The actual reason for Trump needing Kid Rock's help with Kim Jong UnIvanka was upset with him that day and had locked herself in the bathroom. 

Kid Rock Claims Trump Asked Him for Advice for Foreign Policy Advice on ISIS and North Korea (PoliticusUSA link): Musician Kid Rock says former President Donald Trump asked him for foreign policy advice on how to handle the Islamic State (ISIS) and diplomacy with North Korea.

Kid Rock
recalled the conversation during an interview with Fox News personality Tucker Carlson, saying that he and Trump conversed on a golf course shortly after Trump ordered attacks on ISIS in the Middle East.

“I mean, I was there with him one day when he ended the caliphate. He wanted to put out a tweet. And it was like — I don’t like to speak out of school. I hope I’m not. But he said something like, he was like, tell him like — yes, the tweet was — and I’m paraphrasing — but it was like, if you ever joined the caliphate, and trying to do this, you’re going to be dead,” he said. “He goes, what do you think?  I go, awesome … Like, yes, tweet that out. I was like, I can’t add anything better than.”

Kid Rock clarified that the tweet was “reworded and more political and like a little politically correct.” He admitted he did not feel “qualified to answer” Trump’s questions about North Korea and that it felt “weird” to receive Trump’s phone calls. 

During the interview Kid Rock praised Trump for speaking “off the cuff.”

“See now, if you watch a Joe Biden interview, and you watch a Trump interview, there’s no comparison. And Trump speaks off the cuff,” he said. “I understand what it’s like, sometimes you get it wrong. But I would way rather hear somebody come from here [the heart] and get it wrong once in a while.”

Kid Rock visited the White House in 2017 with musician Ted Nugent and Sarah Palin, the former governor of Alaska and vice-presidential nominee.

Mod: America was never safer.

Tuesday, March 22, 2022

Owners reportedly dump dog at animal shelter because they thought he was 'gay'

Mod: Have you had the sexual orientation and lifestyle choices of your pets properly assessed? 

Owners reportedly dump dog at animal shelter because they thought he was 'gay' (Raw Story link): A dog was dumped at a North Carolina dog shelter because the owners were convinced it was gay after it tried to have sex with another male dog, WCCB reports. The shelter is now asking for local shelters to step and take the dog, whose name is "Fezco."

As the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) points out, mounting or thrusting is normal play behavior for pets and doesn't necessarily indicate sexuality. 

That being said, homosexual behavior has been noted in over 1,500 animals species, according to Scientific American.

Dog Dumped At Local Shelter Because Owners Say He’s Gay (WCCB Charlotte link):  A local shelter dog is looking for a soft landing after being dumped by his owners for being “gay.” A Stanly County Animal Shelter Facebook post says the dog’s owners surrendered him to the shelter after he humped another male dog.

Fezco, the shelter says, is about four to five years old and weighs about 50 pounds. They say he likes people and other animals. The shelter is asking for local rescues to step up and take Fezco into foster before he is adopted.

If you work with a rescue who could take Fezco into your program, please call the Stanly County Animal Shelter at (704) 986-3881.

Monday, March 21, 2022

Liz Cheney Proposes ‘Enhanced’ Penalties for Trump Due to His ‘Supreme Dereliction of Duty’

Mod: A few decades down in Gitmo would be nicely enhanced.

Liz Cheney Proposes ‘Enhanced’ Penalties for Trump Due to His ‘Supreme Dereliction of Duty’ (Political Flare link): Liz Cheney probably knows as well as anyone, at this point, what Trump did in the lead up to January 6th and on January 6th and she is angry. We have reported on the fact that it is our suspicion that she knew quite a bit on January 6th when screaming at Jim Jordan “YOU f*cking did this!” 

That “You” always seemed awfully personal to us and not meant to mean “all MAGAs,” but more that Jordan was one of a select few who “did this.”

Her anger simmered and never left as she watched her party go from being as angry as she was to the great whitewash, to the point they booted her out of leadership because she wanted to find answers and she believed democracy was a necessary part of this nation, unlike the rest of the Republicans who were ready to go along with Trump’s attempted palace coup.

Now she has even more information and she wants the country ready for what the committee has:

“Certainly our first priority is to make recommendations. And we’re looking at things like do we need additional enhanced criminal penalties for the kind of supreme dereliction of duty that you saw with President Trump, when he refused to tell the mob to go home after he had provoked that attack on the Capitol.

“I have not learned a single thing since I have been on this committee that has made me less concerned, or less worried, about the gravity of the situation and the actions that President Trump took and also refused to take while the attack was underway.” – Rep. Liz Cheney, Sunday on Meet The Press.

She knows. She knows a lot more than we know. “Enhanced penalties for dereliction of duty”? She knows.

Sunday, March 20, 2022

Has 'The Fly' flown again? Joe Mosca announces he won’t run again for Encinitas City Council

Mod: After just one elected term former Sierra Madre City Councilmember Joe Mosca can now add former Encinitas City Councilmember to his political resume'. Why is this? I'm writing a column about it and I'll have some theories to share with you then. For now, here is some of the current local press.

Mosca announces he won’t run again for Encinitas City Council (Oside News link): Encinitas City Councilman Joe Mosca will not seek another term in office, he announced at the council’s meeting Wednesday, March 16.

“After significant consideration and discussion with my family, I’d like to announce that I will not be seeking another term on the Encinitas City Council,” Mosca read from a statement at the end of Wednesday’s meeting. “I’m extremely grateful to my City Council colleagues and to the voters for the trust that they have placed in me to serve our community for almost eight years.”

Mosca, who is presently serving in rotation as deputy mayor, served two years on the Parks and Recreation Commission before joining the City Council as an appointed member in January 2017. He filled a seat vacated by Catherine Blakespear when she was elected mayor, and he was then elected in 2018 to what became District 4, which covers portions of Olivenhain, Village Park and New Encinitas neighborhoods. A revised district map approved earlier this month retains the general communities of that seat.

“I’ve enjoyed every moment of the journey and I’m proud what we’ve accomplished together,” he said. “We’ve made a difference for our community and for the communities of San Diego County.”

The District 3 and 4 seats are up for election this November as is the mayor. Among the announced candidates for District 4 is current Planning Commissioner Bruce Ehlers.

Blakespear, the current mayor, is running for state Senate.

Mosca is also a former Sierra Madre City Council member. In October 2011, he resigned from that post one year into his second term. 

Mod: The blog Encinitas Undercover (link) said this: "Incumbent Joe Mosca announced that he will not seek re-election. His role in upzoning the huge and hugely controversial Goodson development would surely have made that difficult." A few Sierra Madreans may recall that Joe is usually against something before he is for it. Sorta. Which happily takes us to Your Encinitas Guerilla.

Petition Circulates to Tell Encinitas Deputy Mayor to STFU (Your Encinitas Guerrilla link): “Honestly,” said Olivenhainian Horace Chestnut, “I’ve never heard anybody talk so much and say so little.”

Chestnut directed his comment to Encinitas Deputy Mayor Joe Mosca. Chestnut felt so strongly about the issue that he started a petition demanding that Mosca STFU.

Although the petition started as a joke among Olivenhain neighbors, it quickly escaped and spread to Cardiff, Old Encinitas, New Encinitas and Leucadia.

By the number of signers, the STFU petition now rivals the Our Neighborhood Voices petition. Chestnut wryly speculates that his petition has gained so many supporters because its name is easy to remember. He modestly omits his petition’s worthy goal.

Encinitas residents who have followed Mosca’s City Council career know what a windbag he is,” said Chestnut. “They dread his, ‘Let me start by thanking blah blah blah...’ because they know what follows is volumes of hot air with little or no substance.

“The man has no self-awareness,” said Chestnut. “He likes to hear himself pontificate, and he must think everybody else does too. The popularity of the STFU petition proves that’s not true. I’m not surprised the petition has spread so quickly. It struck a vein of truth.” 

Mod: Anti-Mosca political video produced in Encinitas using Sierra Madre footage.