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Gender: Male
Hometown: America's Finest City
Current location: District 50
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 11,006

Journal Archives

White House discovers a way to make Trump wear a mask

ESPN suspends Adrian Wojnarowski, its star NBA reporter, after profane email to senator

ESPN suspended its top NBA reporter, Adrian Wojnarowski, after he sent a profane email to Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.), multiple people familiar with the situation said Sunday.

Wojnarowski had been scheduled to travel to Florida soon to cover the restart of the NBA season, but he will not make the trip as originally planned. He is still expected to be part of ESPN’s coverage of the resumption of play at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex outside Orlando — but at a later date. His suspension is between one and two weeks, according to those same people.

The suspension came after Hawley tweeted an image of an email from Wojnarowski on Friday in which the reporter responded to a news release from the senator’s office with an expletive.

Hawley’s release had publicized a letter he wrote to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver. Hawley criticized the league for deciding to allow messages that promote social justice on its jerseys this summer but not allow messages that support law enforcement or are critical of China’s Communist Party.

In the email sent to Hawley’s press office, Wojnarowski wrote, “F--- You,” without censoring the expletive.


I wonder how many "F--- You" emails Senator Hawley is about to receive now...

The Republicans Who Want to Destroy Trump

Their party’s a lost cause. America isn’t.

Should you have any doubt about how passionately George Conway and the other Never Trumpers at the Lincoln Project want to defeat the president, check out their ads.

There are dozens at this point, and the best are minute-long masterpieces of derision, miniature operas of contempt, designed to get into President Trump’s head and deep under his skin. That’s exactly where they’ve burrowed.

After the release of “Mourning in America,” which turned Ronald Reagan’s famous “Morning in America” commercial on its head, Trump had one of his trademark Twitter meltdowns. He shrieked at Conway in particular, mentioning his marriage to one of Trump’s brashest aides.

“I don’t know what Kellyanne did to her deranged loser of a husband,” the president tweeted, “but it must have been really bad.”

Such grace. But if George Conway can just shake it off and the Lincoln Project succeeds, he and his fellow refugees from Trump’s Republican Party will find peace and a place in a restored, recognizable political order on the other side. Right?

Wrong. They don’t hope to regain control of the Republican Party, because they expect that Trump-ism will survive Trump and that Trump himself won’t shut up simply because voters shut him down.

“I personally think that the Republican brand is probably destroyed,” Conway told me. “It’s destroyed by it having become essentially a personality cult.” He said that he formally left the party, changing his voter registration to unaffiliated, some two years ago, and he doesn’t envision being able to return anytime soon.


It's the duty of the White House press secretary to hold briefings. But not like this.

On the Monday following President Trump’s Independence Day weekend speeches, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany opened her briefing as she often does: by reprimanding “the media” for mischaracterizing the president’s words.

“This vision is not a culture war, as the media seeks to falsely proclaim,” McEnany said. The very next day, in an interview with RealClearPolitics, the president said: “We are in a culture war.”

Such head-spinning contradictions are routine at Trump White House briefings, where the press secretary often admonishes reporters for asking about the president’s exact words.

At one recent briefing, reporters asked McEnany to explain a presidential tweet, sent a few hours earlier, maligning NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace — the circuit’s only full-time black driver — suggesting he had perpetrated a “HOAX” and calling on him to apologize.

Although the president had written “That & Flag decision has caused lowest ratings EVER!” McEnany denied that the president had criticized NASCAR’s decision to ban the Confederate flag at its events. (For the record, Trump was wrong, and NASCAR’s ratings rose after its ban.)


The end of small business

Giant corporations may be the only survivors in the post-pandemic economy

Antonio’s, my kids’ favorite pizza-by-the-slice joint, will be fine. As for the rest of downtown Amherst, Mass., where I live — I’m not so sure.

Antonio’s is (or was, before March) perpetually swarming with high school and college students, local adults, and the occasional out-of-towner. It’s a hub of the Pleasant Street district, which is, by my count, home to three cafes, three bubble tea shops, more than 40 bars and restaurants, a century-old stationery store, five hair salons, two bookstores, one toy store, five boutiques, one movie theater, and a florist. Maybe Pleasant Street isn’t quite as hip as Williamsburg, Brooklyn, but it’s a great place to meet friends, browse or get ice cream. The large majority of the businesses are owned by women and members of minority groups, according to the Amherst Business Improvement District, and have fewer than 10 employees.

What will be left of that vibrant downtown when we emerge from the coronavirus crisis?

Eventually, the overall economy will recover, more or less. People will need to buy things and pay for services. But the coronavirus will radically reshape Main Streets across the country, accelerating changes long in the making — chain stores will replace mom-and-pop businesses, some storefronts will remain vacant, and cash that once went into local hands will be redirected to Amazon and Walmart. (Amazon chief executive Jeff Bezos owns The Washington Post.) The pandemic will reinforce and exacerbate what were already the two key economic trends of our lifetime: consolidation and inequality.

For decades, large businesses have been taking market share from small businesses, and the corporations at the top of the pyramid have been consolidating into ever-bigger megacorporations. In the 1980s, half of retail shopping took place in independent stores; today, it is less than one-quarter. From 2002 to 2017, Home Depot and Lowes almost doubled their joint share of the home-improvement retail market, from 42 to 81 percent. Even before the coronavirus struck, in 43 metropolitan areas more than half of all groceries were bought at Walmart. Those trends will be amplified: Many small businesses and weaker corporations won’t have enough capital to outlast the pandemic, and their customers will be claimed by a handful of winners with the cash and technological infrastructure necessary to survive and prosper in the new environment.


After the fastest recession in U.S. history, the economic recovery may be fizzling

United Airlines announced plans to lay off more than one-third of its 95,000 workers. Brooks Brothers, which first opened for business in 1818, filed for bankruptcy. And Bed Bath and Beyond said it will close 200 stores.

Welcome to the recovery.

If there were still hopes of a “V-shaped” comeback from the novel coronavirus shutdown, this past week should have put an end to them. The pandemic shock, which economists once assumed would be only a temporary business interruption, appears instead to be settling into a traditional, self-perpetuating recession.

When states and cities began closing most businesses in March, the idea was to smother the virus and buy time for the medical system to adapt. Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and a senior White House adviser, spoke of hopes “that by July the country’s really rocking again.”

But without a uniform federal strategy, many governors rushed to reopen their economies before bringing the virus under control. Now states such as Florida, California, Texas and Arizona are setting daily records for coronavirus cases and more than 70 percent of the country has either paused or reversed reopening plans, according to Goldman Sachs.

After two surprisingly strong months, the economy could begin shedding jobs again this month and in August, Morgan Stanley warned Friday. Many small businesses that received forgivable government loans have exhausted their funds while some larger companies are starting to thin their payrolls in preparation for a longer-than-expected downturn.


Robert Mueller: Roger Stone remains a convicted felon, and rightly so

The work of the special counsel’s office — its report, indictments, guilty pleas and convictions — should speak for itself. But I feel compelled to respond both to broad claims that our investigation was illegitimate and our motives were improper, and to specific claims that Roger Stone was a victim of our office. The Russia investigation was of paramount importance. Stone was prosecuted and convicted because he committed federal crimes. He remains a convicted felon, and rightly so.

Russia’s actions were a threat to America’s democracy. It was critical that they be investigated and understood. By late 2016, the FBI had evidence that the Russians had signaled to a Trump campaign adviser that they could assist the campaign through the anonymous release of information damaging to the Democratic candidate. And the FBI knew that the Russians had done just that: Beginning in July 2016, WikiLeaks released emails stolen by Russian military intelligence officers from the Clinton campaign. Other online personas using false names — fronts for Russian military intelligence — also released Clinton campaign emails.

Following FBI Director James B. Comey’s termination in May 2017, the acting attorney general named me as special counsel and directed the special counsel’s office to investigate Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. The order specified lines of investigation for us to pursue, including any links or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the Trump campaign. One of our cases involved Stone, an official on the campaign until mid-2015 and a supporter of the campaign throughout 2016. Stone became a central figure in our investigation for two key reasons: He communicated in 2016 with individuals known to us to be Russian intelligence officers, and he claimed advance knowledge of WikiLeaks’ release of emails stolen by those Russian intelligence officers.

We now have a detailed picture of Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election. The special counsel’s office identified two principal operations directed at our election: hacking and dumping Clinton campaign emails, and an online social media campaign to disparage the Democratic candidate. We also identified numerous links between the Russian government and Trump campaign personnel — Stone among them. We did not establish that members of the Trump campaign conspired with the Russian government in its activities. The investigation did, however, establish that the Russian government perceived it would benefit from a Trump presidency and worked to secure that outcome. It also established that the campaign expected it would benefit electorally from information stolen and released through Russian efforts.


Mueller finally speaks!

Trump Boosts Michael Flynn In Fresh Attack On Russia Probe

Source: Talking Points Memo

Just hours after commuting his longtime friend and former political adviser, Roger Stone, President Donald Trump on Saturday tweeted support for his former national security adviser, Michael Flynn.

The president claimed that “new documents” boosting Flynn who admitted to lying to the FBI amid the Russia probe had surfaced according to the conservative news network One America News.
While Trump has hinted at a pardon for Flynn in the past, some in the Trump camp are also calling to have the general join the president’s re-election campaign trail, nine sources confirmed to POLITICO.

Flynn has been embroiled in a long legal battle after admitting that he lied to the FBI during an investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.

Read more: https://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/trump-boosts-michael-flynn-in-fresh-attack-on-russia-probe

This criminal never stops criming and whining.

Mail Carrier in West Virginia Pleads Guilty to Attempted Election Fraud

Talk of election fraud may conjure images of high-tech operations, ones that rely on hacked emails and a network of fake social media accounts.

A recent case in West Virginia, however, was decidedly less sophisticated. According to federal prosecutors, it involved just one mail carrier and a little bit of black ink.

The mail carrier, Thomas Cooper, 47, of Dry Fork, W.Va., pleaded guilty on Thursday to one count of attempted election fraud and one count of “injury to the mail,” according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Northern District of West Virginia.

Prosecutors said that Mr. Cooper admitted to altering eight primary ballot request forms with black ink. On five of those forms, the political party was changed from Democrat to Republican, officials said, and they would have resulted in Democratic voters receiving ballots featuring Republican primary candidates.


Trump Says He 'Aced' a Cognition Test. What Does That Tell Us?

If the president wants to impress us with his intellect, he should take the SAT.

President Trump said on Thursday that he “aced” a cognitive test administered at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.

Neither he nor the White House, however, would elaborate on any details about the test, leaving the public in the dark on how to evaluate his claim. But it’s a fair guess that he was given a routine cognitive screening test that doctors use all the time to check for dementia.

If that’s the case, let me give you an idea of what “acing” such a cognitive test might mean. One commonly used screen is the Mini-Mental Status Exam or MMSE. Ready to try it?

OK, tell me today’s date.

Now, spell “WORLD” backward.

Next, here’s a piece of paper. Write a simple sentence. It must have a subject and verb and make sense, like “Hey, this is not a very difficult exam to pass.” (The maximum score for this test is 30; a score below 20 usually indicates cognitive impairment.)

You get the idea. These cognitive tests are basic and, unless you have dementia or some other medical or psychiatric problem that would impair your cognition, you, too, will likely “ace” any of these tests. If Mr. Trump wants to impress the public with his cognitive prowess, perhaps he should take the SAT.

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