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Gender: Female
Hometown: NY
Home country: US
Current location: Florida
Member since: Mon Sep 6, 2004, 08:54 PM
Number of posts: 166,685

Journal Archives

Why Trump's grudging 'concession' speech was literally unbelievable


Why Trump's grudging 'concession' speech was literally unbelievable
Trump's new video was less a concession speech and more a please-let-me-stick-around-for-12-more-days speech.
Jan. 8, 2021, 8:00 AM EST
By Steve Benen


"Now Congress has certified the results, and the new administration will be inaugurated on January 20. My focus now turns to ensuring a smooth, orderly, and seamless transition of power."

Let's review the many problems:

1. Trump's video is filled with lies. In the video, the Republican claimed, "I immediately deployed the National Guard and federal law enforcement to secure the building and expel the intruders." I wish that were true, but it's plainly not. What's more, in the new video, Trump condemned the insurrectionist mob as "heinous," and claimed to be "outraged by the violence, lawlessness, and mayhem," which is the opposite of what he told the public a day earlier.

2. Teleprompter Trump is not to be trusted. The pattern has been obvious for quite a while: Trump speaks his mind, sparks outrage, and then does damage control by reading the words others put on a teleprompter for him to read. As a rule, this is soon followed by a fresh round of scandalous sincerity, in which Trump contradicts the script.

3. It's too late. Oh, now Trump is committed to "a smooth, orderly, and seamless transition of power"? In case the Republican hasn't noticed, the transition is underway, but there's nothing smooth, orderly, or seamless about it.

4. Motivations matter. Trump's video was born of panic. As his failed term nears its end, he faces the very real possibility of impeachment, being removed from office through the 25th Amendment, and possible criminal liability for inciting a riot against his own country's Capitol.


There were plenty of pundits reflecting late yesterday on Trump's shift in "tone," but make no mistake: this new video is about strategy, not sincerity. Those afraid of what he might do in closing days of his term need not feel reassured. The threat, made obvious on Wednesday, remains unchanged.
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Jan 8, 2021, 10:42 AM (5 replies)

Democracy, Still By Connie Schultz


Democracy, Still
By Connie Schultz
January 7, 2021 6 min read


I join the growing chorus of people demanding to know how this could have happened. How did these traitors break through security and swarm the Capitol? Why were some officers reportedly mingling with them and taking selfies?

It's not as if we didn't know violence was possible. Members of Congress had been instructed to arrive early and to restrict their movements to the web of tunnels beneath the Capitol. Sherrod, who has traveled by car since March, was advised to use an alternative route into the Capitol for security reasons.

This interview, after the attack, with U.S. Rep. Linda Sanchez has been widely quoted for obvious reasons:

"I called my husband (Tuesday) night, and I told him that I was coming into work today but that should anything happen, I let him know where my will and last testament was located in the event that we needed it. And it's a sad day in America when you are trying to come in and do your job in a democracy and you have to think about things like that."

Trump's response on social media was so egregious and potentially dangerous that Twitter and Instagram temporarily shut down his accounts. Facebook has since shut down Trump's account until at least Inauguration Day. Calls grow for his impeachment or removal by what remains of his Cabinet.

What a terrifying day for our country, and one we will never forget.

And yet.

In the wee hours of Thursday morning, members of both houses returned to their chambers, and the majority did the job they were elected to do. They finished the people's business.

On Jan. 20, Joe Biden will be sworn in as president of the United States.

Democracy, still.
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Jan 8, 2021, 09:56 AM (0 replies)

Eric Boehlert: Capitol mob -- how the press spent years glorifying Trump voters


Capitol mob — how the press spent years glorifying Trump voters
Eric Boehlert
2 hr ago


The lawless, violent Trump mob rampaged inside the Capitol, drew gunfire from police, and destroyed offices of Democratic members. News consumers might have been surprised by what unfolded on Wednesday, because while the political press has feasted on Trump Voter stories over the last five years, constantly meeting up with white, Midwestern loyalists in diners, virtually none of that gentle coverage ever hinted at a radical, racist, conspiratorial dark side.

Trump stands at the fulcrum of a hate movement as he constantly spouts divisive rhetoric, likening Blacks to rodents and immigrants to violent trespassers. Doesn't it stand to reason that lots of his supporters are hateful, too?

Routinely depicted as hard working folks in search of a political path, and thankful for Trump leadership, the Trump Voter coverage for years has failed to pull back the curtain and reveal even small glimpses of Wednesday's organized mob. Committed to the idea of documenting every thought and nuance inside Trump Nation (and fending off claims of "liberal media bias" in the process), the press has presented a gauzy fantasy about what was really going on in right-wing America.


When Hillary Clinton told the truth about Trump Voters in 2016, she was widely condemned in the press. In September 2016, she suggested half of Trump supporters fit into a “basket of deplorables." The baskets included, “racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic." The press elevated the throw-away into a major campaign story, as a Beltway full of commentators, following the GOP's orchestrated lead, offered up ceaseless tsk-tsk analysis.


Cheered on now by the relentless propaganda campaign to denigrate free and fair elections, Trump voters are at the forefront of a radical and dangerous political movement designed to undermine democracy. How did the press miss that story?
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Jan 8, 2021, 09:28 AM (11 replies)

Trump Made Video After He Was Warned of Legal Risk

As usual, it's all about him.


Trump Made Video After He Was Warned of Legal Risk
January 8, 2021 at 6:28 am EST By Taegan Goddard

New York Times: “Mr. Trump initially resisted taping the video, agreeing to do it only after aides pressed him and he appeared to suddenly realize he could face legal risk for prodding the mob, coming shortly after the chief federal prosecutor for Washington left open the possibility of investigating the president for illegally inciting the attack by telling supporters to march on the Capitol and show strength.”

“Pat Cipollone, the White House counsel, had warned Mr. Trump of just that danger on Wednesday as aides frantically tried to get the president to intervene and publicly call off rioters, which he did only belatedly, reluctantly and halfheartedly.”

Said a Trump adviser to CNN: “I think that video was done only because almost all his senior staff was about to resign, and impeachment is imminent.”
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Jan 8, 2021, 08:32 AM (1 replies)

The Rude Pundit: Random Observations on an Insurrection


The Rude Pundit
Proudly lowering the level of political discourse
Random Observations on an Insurrection

1. This was inevitable. Anyone even casually observing the last five years knew that the Trump reign was going to end in violence. Unless you willfully put blinders on and truly believe the bullshit fairy tale of "This is not who we are." This is very much who we are. We have always been a nation filled with racist, incoherent yahoos who are on the verge of violence and whose white privilege protects them in ways that no Black or Muslim person would ever be. Those yahoos just needed a leader to tell them to go and they were gonna go, and, in Donald Trump, they found their leader, someone who is as devolved and cretinous as they are, with the illusion of strength and courage and success, all lies, all fantasy.

So when Trump asked his MAGA drones to show up in Washington, DC for a rally on the day that Congress would certify that Trump lost and Joe Biden won the presidency, what the fuck else would you expect to happen? And then he implored them to march to the Capitol, where Congress was meeting. Oh, sure, he dropped in the word "peacefully," but he also told them, "You have to show strength, and you have to be strong." Whether he intended violence or not (and I think he was desperately hoping for violence because that's the kind of bitch he is), the idiots who think Joe Biden is a pedophile and hundreds of thousands of votes just disappeared heard exactly what they wanted to hear: It was finally, at long last, go time.

2. It could have been much, much worse. The motherfuckers built a gallows in front of the Capitol building. They talked about hanging members of Congress. And if you want to blindly dismiss that as hyperbolic bluster, go fuck yourself. These fucking animals had zip ties with them. There were fucking pipe bombs found, as well as a cooler filled with Molotov cocktails. They fucking vandalized the joint, wrecking shit and scrawling "Murder the media" on a door. The intention was to harm people. They killed a member of the Capitol police with a fire extinguisher. Do not have a single iota of doubt: If they could have gotten their hands on a Democratic member of Congress or Mitt Romney or another Republican they see as disloyal to their Orange King, they would murdered them. Christ, imagine if they got to Ilhan Omar or Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, representatives who they have been told are enemy agents. And if you think that's paranoid nonsense, then you put yourself in the shoes of the Senators and Representatives in that building, hearing the doors and windows break while a hooting mob of dullards who have been told that you hate them and their America come streaming down the hallway towards where you are. You'd have shit yourself in fear. They wanted to take over by force. They wanted a coup. This was an insurrection by people who believe a gigantic lie that is being cynically propagated by Republicans. You don't bring a Confederate flag into the Capitol unless you're making a pretty clear point about what you think of the United States government.


5a. Honestly, is there a single goddamn reason to leave Trump in office other than you don't want to bother with removing him? It's not like he's been doing the job.

6. And, in the future, listen to us on the left when we say that someone is a goddamned danger. We were right about George W. Bush. We were right about Trump. We knew the former was a vile dunderhead; we knew the latter was a maniac who couldn't handle the job and couldn't give a shit about learning it and whose followers were going to turn violent. We were right. Everyone who said not to worry was wrong. Everyone who said that there's no difference between Democratic and Republican candidates was wrong. Everyone who told us that Trump didn't mean what he said was wrong. Every media outlet that thought Trump was a joke was wrong. We were right, all of us sad Cassandras. And we'll be right in the future.

7. By the way, Democrats won the fucking Senate. That happened yesterday with two Senate runoff victories in Georgia. And Trump's and the Republicans' failures continue as we had the highest number of COVID deaths on a single day yesterday. We have so fucking much work to do.
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Jan 8, 2021, 06:37 AM (13 replies)

The Scarlet 'S'


The Scarlet ‘S’
January 7, 2021 at 9:41 pm EST By Taegan Goddard

George Will: “The Trump-Hawley-Cruz insurrection against constitutional government will be an indelible stain on the nation. They, however, will not be so permanent. In 14 days, one of them will be removed from office by the constitutional processes he neither fathoms nor favors. It will take longer to scrub the other two from public life. Until that hygienic outcome is accomplished, from this day forward, everything they say or do or advocate should be disregarded as patent attempts to distract attention from the lurid fact of what they have become. Each will wear a scarlet ‘S’ as a seditionist.”
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Jan 8, 2021, 06:26 AM (0 replies)

Eric Boehlert: Trump's crowning disgrace -- how the media enabled four years of terror


Trump's crowning disgrace — how the media enabled four years of terror
What a sad chapter

Eric Boehlert
1 hr ago


Trump has been at war with an unraveling America for years. The parallel reality has been that the American press corps has not figured out how to deal with that frightening scenario. It hasn’t' properly grappled with the idea that our commander-in-chief would purposefully try to harm America's security and undo its democratic traditions.

It's hard to think about what might have been if the press had carried out its duties differently over the last four years — if the press had shown more courage and not allowed itself to be bullied by a mad man.

• What if the press had taken Trump's coup attempt more seriously over the last two months, instead of waving his strategy off as "performance art" and "bad sportsmanship"? What if news dispatches had regularly used “sedition,” “treason,” and “coup” to accurately describe the unfolding crisis? What if news that Trump had discussions about imposing martial law with advisors in a West Wing meeting had sparked banner headlines and widespread media calls for resignation?

• What if national media outlets had refused to play any role in the GOP's attempt to denigrate the election process by denying a platform to Republican members of Congress who refused to say Joe Biden had won the election?

• What if Trump's pronouncement in September that he might not peacefully give up power if he lost the election had generated huge headlines across the country and network evening news coverage, instead of sparking crickets from the media?


• What if the press had told the truth about Trump's unhinged and demented presidential rallies, instead of politely calling them "fiery"?

Wednesday's insurrection was Trump's crowning disgrace. And over four years, the press helped him get there.
Posted by babylonsister | Thu Jan 7, 2021, 08:55 AM (3 replies)

Mick Mulvaney resigns from Trump administration: 'I can't stay here'

Mick Mulvaney resigns from Trump administration: 'I can't stay here'
By Jordan Williams - 01/07/21 08:39 AM EST

Former White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney on Thursday resigned from his post as the special envoy to Northern Ireland following the riot on the U.S. Capitol.

“I can’t stay here, not after yesterday,” Mulvaney said in an appearance on CNBC. “You can’t look at that yesterday and say I want to be a part of that in any way shape or form.”

His resignation follows that of some other notable White House aides in the aftermath of the violence, including Stephanie Grisham, chief of staff to first lady Melania Trump, and deputy national security adviser Matt Pottinger.

National Security Adviser Robert O'Brien also reportedly considered stepping down on Wednesday, according to several reports.

Mulvaney said he wouldn’t be surprised to see more resignations as President Trump winds down his final 13 days in office, but added that he understood why some in the administration would still choose to stay.

“I wouldn’t be surprised to see more of my friends resign over the course of the next 24 to 48 hours, and it’d be completely understandable if they did,” Mulvaney said. “Those who choose to stay, and I have talked some of to them, are choosing to stay because they are concerned that the president might put someone in to make things even worse.”


Posted by babylonsister | Thu Jan 7, 2021, 08:47 AM (14 replies)

Nearly 100 lawmakers call for Trump's removal through impeachment or 25th Amendment


Rebecca Shabad
7m ago / 7:48 AM EST
Nearly 100 lawmakers call for Trump's removal through impeachment or 25th Amendment

Nearly 100 Democratic members of Congress have backed calls for or Trump's removal from office in the next several days either through the impeachment process, the 25th Amendment or another way after the violence that rocked the Capitol on Wednesday.

The calls come as multiple sources familiar with the matter said there have been informal discussions about invoking the 25th Amendment among staff-level officials within the Trump administration.

Trump spent Wednesday inciting and praising a mob that stormed the Capitol, so much so that he has been locked out of Twitter and Facebook for at least 12 hours.
Posted by babylonsister | Thu Jan 7, 2021, 07:56 AM (8 replies)

A Trump supporter called C-SPAN in tears to ask if her president had lied to her


A Trump supporter called C-SPAN in tears to ask if her president had lied to her
Listen to a self-described Trump supporter rethink her support in real time.
By Dylan Matthewsdylan@vox.com Jan 6, 2021, 9:45pm EST

For the entire Trump presidency, the question skeptics of the administration kept asking was: what will be enough? What could make his supporters realize they’ve been had?

Charlottesville wasn’t enough; trying to get a foreign prosecutor to pursue his political opponents wasn’t enough; a botched hurricane response that left thousands dead wasn’t enough; a pandemic that left hundreds of thousands dead wasn’t enough. So what would do it?

In that context, something remarkable happened on C-SPAN on Wednesday night, after a Trump-inspired mob stormed the Capitol and attempted to overturn the 2020 presidential election and keep Trump in office. At least one of the group storming the Capitol, Trump supporter Ashli Babbitt, was killed by an unknown shooter after she had made it inside the Capitol building.

On C-SPAN this evening, an apparent Trump supporter, calling herself “Tammy from Boise,” called in and wanted to know: Was her president lying to her?

***CSPAN video @ link***

Here’s a full transcript of “Tammy’s” remarks:

I just have one question. I wanted to know if my president lied to me today. If he did I want him to tell me. More importantly, I want him to tell the family of the woman who got shot and killed today. I voted for him — I voted for him. I’m sorry.

Keep in mind: C-SPAN cannot do live fact-checking of its callers, so there’s absolutely a possibility that “Tammy from Boise” is acting, not really a Trump supporter, etc. We also don’t know if she meant “I’m sorry” to refer to her Trump vote or her emotional state. (We’ll update if we learn more to confirm or disconfirm her call.)

But it’s a powerful moment regardless that encapsulates the degree to which the Trump administration has relied both on actively lying to its supporters (by telling them that the election was stolen — something Trump continued to do throughout the day) and on a kind of gamification of politics that flattens real consequences.

What snapped Tammy out, in her telling, was the realization that a real woman was shot and killed as she and other Trump supporters stormed the Capitol. Trump’s exaggerations were not merely harmless rhetoric; they directly got someone, a supporter of his, killed.
Posted by babylonsister | Thu Jan 7, 2021, 07:27 AM (9 replies)
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