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Gender: Female
Hometown: Seattle, WA
Member since: Mon Dec 13, 2004, 02:55 AM
Number of posts: 12,232

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Trump's road trip: even worse than you think

From including Kushner and excluding National Security Advisor in meeting with Netanyahu to not reading even abbreviated bullet point notes then not listening to the translations of world leaders' speeches, Trump shows that in every moment he will pick the worst path to follow.


The latest in the string of daily developments was a report on Friday night that Jared Kushner asked the Russians to set up a secret channel of communication with the Trump transition team, bypassing US diplomatic and intelligence channels. It was a stunning revelation, given that Kushner is not just the president’s son-in-law but his closest foreign policy adviser. When Trump met Israeli prime minster Benjamin Netanyahu, for example, Kushner was in the room but national security adviser HR McMaster was left outside.

In Europe, Trump had to play a different role: a senior member of a group seeking to act in concert and by consensus. But Trump does not do collegial, a fact that was grasped before in Europe but is now viscerally understood after the president shoved the Montenegrin prime minister out of the way to get front and centre of a Nato leaders’ photo-op. It was demonstrated again at the G7, when he did not even bother to put on headphones to hear the speeches of his fellow world leaders, including his Italian host.

These are the ways of a man without curiosity. He does not read books, and listens fitfully and reluctantly to others. He is reportedly fed up with McMaster because he goes on for too long about world affairs. The briefing papers McMaster’s team drew up before this trip had to be condensed to a few bullet points on a single page for each issue, and even then Trump grew bored of reviewing them before departure, and groused about how long the whole excursion would take.

Trump lack of grasp of the realities of geopolitical alliances and global trade is a reminder that he came to office at the age of 70, having spent his entire adult life in a single business, real estate – a business he inherited, and which was built on bluster, gaming the legal system and forming partnerships of convenience with equally ruthless operators.

Edited to add:
Trump taking a golf cart instead of walking with fellow G7 is making headlines, but so far I haven't seen this connected as yet another example of him separating himself from other G7 leaders, yet again demonstrating his distancing of himself and the U.S. from our traditional allies.
I did notice an important point made in lower paragraphs in an article headlined by his taking the golf cart and think it's worth highlighting as another action that fits with the main points here.


Trump’s brief separation from the foreign leaders ahead of the photo op comes shortly after he refused to take part in a pledge supporting the Paris climate deal. The U.S. was the only country represented at the summit that did not sign the deal on Saturday.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said there was a “very intense meeting” where all six other nations “made it clear that we want the U.S. to stick to its commitments.”

Edit to add:

Spicer is now saying that Trump wore a single earpiece rather than headphones, so that part is not accurate. See also post#32 from oberliner.

However, the rest stands and now the New York Times has a good article about Trump being "at odds with allies" that further illustrates the divide he is creating.

"The story behind the fake Manchester attack victims"

There are some vile people in the world. Apparently this has been increasing in the last year.

In the wake of the Manchester attack, family members of people genuinely caught up in Monday night’s terror searched desperately for news of their loved ones. Many turned to social media. Collages of the missing were created by people who wanted to help.

But as their posts went viral, so did the hoaxes. And this time, some ended up being published by major news outlets in the media scramble which traditionally follows a terrorist attack.

After every suspected terror attack for at least the last year, posts attempting to claim prominent internet celebrities or journalists are either a perpetrator or victim have appeared on Twitter.

It hasn’t been limited to terrorist attacks, either. After the EgyptAir crash in May 2016, the BBC reported on hoax victim posts, most of which originated in Mexico. Hoaxers later told journalists they used one man’s photo because he had cheated them out of money. “Our goal is to ruin his reputation. We want the whole world to recognise his face,” they told France 24’s The Observers.

Trudeau smiles while Macron defeats Trump's pull in handshake

First, Macron walks toward Trump, who clearly thinks he'll receive the first handshake, then Macron swerves over to shake others' hands before shaking with Trump.

When Macron does shake hands with Trump, Trump attempts his strong man pull in handshake, which Macron deftly defeats.

Be sure to look at Trudeau's reaction, which is cut off in tighter lens videos. He looks to be enjoying Macron's maneuver, which is similar to Trudeau's when Trump tried and failed to pull the same crap on him.


The Guardian has a clearer video of this, which first shows Macron and Trump with the sitting handshake, then shows the standing one:


Found the 2nd one on YouTube, which shows Trudeau's reaction more clearly.

Trevor Noah on a roll on Daily Show


U.S. withholding critical security info from EU?

I've been following the news of an imminent laptop ban in planes traveling from Europe to the States.

Today, I noticed this article about the meeting in the EU averting this ban, at least for now.

Within it was this paragraph, that caught my attention:


The “high level” meeting had been requested by EU officials because of concerns that information about a possible security threat had not been shared with Brussels, and that major travel disruption would ensue should America act unilaterally.

This points to an even bigger issue than whether or not Trump's crew might stir chaos once again by enacting a seat of their pants electronics ban on incoming flights from Europe, though that in itself is worrisome. It shows that they are withholding important security info, the type that shoukd be shared, from our allies.

I wonder about the extent to which they are doing this.


"Moscow in the Meddle" The Daily Show


Something else that stood out for me is how relaxed and happy Trump looks in the pictures from his Oval Office meeting with the Russians. That's a strong contrast to his demeanor when he has met with other world leaders, particularly with traditional allies like Merkel.

Heads up west coast. SNL live and a tiny bit early on top of that.

Just looked and it shows an 8:29 pm start here in Seattle.

And Melissa is back!

More chaotic governance from Trump admin - possible electronic ban on flights from EU to US

There are now multiple reports that such a ban is imminent. Delta even put up a sign stating it was in effect as of May 12th. A photo of the sign was posted on Flyertalk forums, leading to a large thread there and to discussion elsewhere on the Internet. Delta has now said the sign was in error.

Meanwhile, meetings have been taking place in U.S. and one has been set with EU to discuss this and EU is noting the danger of multiple devices, many of which would likely not be turned off appropriately, in cargo hold.

Europe is bracing for a laptop ban on flights to America

U.S. likely to expand airline laptop ban to Europe: government officials



Update: Delta has issued the following statement regarding the sign: “This sign was posted in CVG in error. It does not reflect any new news or guidance from DHS. Should be considered erroneous.” Hmmmm….

We’ve been hearing rumors that an electronics ban will be announced for flights from Europe to the US at some point this week. To my surprise this still hasn’t happened, and actually the Department of Homeland Security has been claiming that nothing has been decided for sure.

#SecretaryKelly continues 2 engage w/stakeholders about threats to aviation – this week w/ Congress, US airline reps and European officials.

— David Lapan (@SpoxDHS) May 12, 2017

Many reputable sources have suggested otherwise, and that a decision has in fact been made but just hasn’t been communicated publicly yet. Interestingly FlyerTalk member SFO 1K posted a picture of a sign made by Delta at Cincinnati Airport, which suggests that an electronics ban is in place effective immediately for international flights from Europe to the United States.

Fri May 12, 2017 | 1:59pm EDT

U.S. and European officials will discuss airline security issues at a meeting in Brussels next week, including possibly expanding the number of airports that ban passengers from carrying electronic devices bigger than cellphones aboard flights, a European Commission spokeswoman said on Friday.
European regulators have warned that placing hundreds of devices in the hold on long-haul flights could also compromise safety by increasing the risk of fire from poorly deactivated lithium-ion batteries.

Kelly briefed members of Congress Thursday and held a meeting with high-level executives of Delta Air Lines (DAL.N), United Airlines (UAL.N), American Airlines Group Inc (AAL.O) and Airlines For America, a trade group. A congressional official said Homeland Security was likely to expand the ban soon, but did not say when or to what airports.

The airlines declined to comment, but an airline official said government officials suggested an expansion of the ban was expected soon but it wasn't certain when.

I wonder what time "The Late Show" tapes? Tonight's the reunion and it will be interesting

If the whole crew has heard about Comey and what the might all say.

"Democrat calls for emergency hearings in Congress"


Congressman Elijah Cummings, ranking member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, has called for “immediate emergency hearings” on Comey’s termination:

Congress needs to have immediate emergency hearings to obtain testimony directly from Attorney General Sessions, the deputy attorney general, and FBI Director Comey. The White House was already covering up for Michael Flynn by refusing to provide a single document to Congress, and now the President fired the one independent person who was doing the most to investigate President Trump and his campaign over allegations of coordination with Russia. It is mindboggling that the Attorney General – who claimed to have recused himself – was directly involved in the decision to fire Director Comey according to the White House itself. There is now a crisis of confidence at the Justice Department, and President Trump is not being held accountable because House Republicans refuse to work with us to do our job. Congress must restore credibility, accountability, and transparency to this investigation and finally pass legislation to create a truly independent commission.”

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