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Member since: Tue Dec 27, 2016, 05:47 PM
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Jon Stewart Reads Trump Executive Order On Air: "Purposeful, Vindictive Chaos"

"I, Donald J. Trump, am exhausting. It has been 11 days, Stephen. 11 [expletive] days. Eleven. The presidency is supposed to age the president, not the public.

The reason that I, Donald J. Trump, am exhausting is that every instinct and fiber of my pathological self-regard calls me to abuse of power. I want — no, deserve — not just your respect but your adoration. Parades with the tanks and the synchronized dancing, and why can’t they train 10,000 doves to spell out “Trump” in the clouds? How hard can it be? They’re already flying.

I, Donald J. Trump, am exhausting because it is going to take relentless stamina, vigilance and every institutional check and balance this great country can muster to keep me, Donald J. Trump, from going full Palpatine, with the lightning coming out of the fingertips and “fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate.”

We have never faced this before. Purposeful, vindictive chaos. But perhaps therein lies the saving grace of my, Donald J. Trump’s, presidency.

No one action will be adequate. All actions will be necessary. And if we do not allow Donald Trump to exhaust our fight and somehow come through this presidency calamity-less and constitutionally partially intact, then I, Donald J. Trump, will have demonstrated the greatness of America. Just not the way I thought I was gonna."


' Give me your tired, your poor: The story of poet and refugee advocate Emma Lazarus

"The year was 1883 when Emma Lazarus, a young, high society New York poet and the descendant of Jewish immigrants, was asked for a favor.

Fundraising efforts were underway for a pedestal to hold the Statue of Liberty, an expensive gift from France that many Americans found especially uninspiring. The French had paid for construction of the monument, but its recipients were responsible for buying its base. This made out-of-towners scoff.

But elite writers and authors in New York went to work anyway, soliciting help from people like the 34-year-old Lazarus to reach their monetary goal. Would she compose, they asked, a sonnet to be sold at auction, alongside the writings of Mark Twain and Walt Whitman?

An undated portrait of poet Emma Lazarus. (Shearith Israel via AP)
Lazarus agreed, begrudgingly, for she didn’t write “to order.”

What the poet didn’t know at the time — as a woman whose work as a “poetess” had been at times the subject of condescension — was that it would be her words, lyrical and poignant, that decades later came to define the American vision of liberty."


UN Braces as Trumps Detente With Russia Upsets Balance of Power

"President Donald Trump’s outreach to Russia is reverberating through the United Nations, where U.S. allies worry that a partnership between Washington and Moscow could undermine a historic balance of power dating to the early days of the Cold War.....

Few countries have more at stake than Ukraine, which is keenly focused on whether the U.S. will continue to stand with other nations in not recognizing Russia’s annexation of Crimea, or if Washington softens its stance -- and eases sanctions -- in return for more cooperation against terrorism. Syria’s beleaguered opposition, which Russia has targeted for bombing in its support of President Bashar al-Assad, could be wiped out if the U.S. shifts policy and withholds its support.

The U.K., which boasts of its “special relationship” to the U.S., is said to be deeply concerned that Trump’s admiration for President Vladimir Putin will give Russia sway in eastern Europe, according to two senior officials, who asked not to be identified discussing a sensitive matter. U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May met with Trump in Washington Jan. 27, and Trump spoke with Putin by phone for about an hour the following day.

“It’s one thing to say you want to put ‘America first’ and try new things, but this is not the right time to turn your back on alliances that have served us for 70 years," said Edward Luck, a professor at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs. “You may think it’s time to approach diplomacy differently but you cannot throw out the baby with the bathwater.”


Trump: I will tell McConnell to 'go nuclear' if Democrats hold up Gorsuch nomination

President Donald Trump said he will urge Senate Republicans to scrap filibuster rules, or take the so-called "nuclear option," if Democrats in the increasingly tense chamber use them to block his nomination of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court.
After Trump appointed Gorsuch, the 49-year-old conservative appeals judge, to the top U.S. court Tuesday night, Democrats signaled they could delay the nomination. If they filibuster, Republicans, who have 52 Senate seats, would need 60 votes to confirm him unless they cut that rule.
Trump told reporters Wednesday that he would encourage Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., to take that route, which would require only a simple majority.


Democrats must stand steady and firm

There is a second sacred wall at the CIA. Trump disrespects that one every day.

By Michael Morell
January 29
Michael Morell was deputy director and twice acting director of the CIA.

As you walk through the main lobby of the CIA, your gaze is drawn to the right — toward the Memorial Wall, with its 117 stars, one for each CIA officer who has died in the line of duty; toward the Book of Honor listing the names of those officers, where cover considerations allow; and toward the fresh flowers that are almost always there, placed by friends and colleagues inspired by their sacrifice.

It was this wall that drew so much negative commentary about President Trump’s visit to the CIA this month — the president’s brief, almost offhand reference to a memorial that is the soul of the agency, and his clear elevation of his ego above the sacrifices of those memorialized on the wall. Such commentaries were on the mark, and they captured my own feelings as well.

But there is another wall in the lobby that carries almost as much significance as the Memorial Wall — the wall that is to the left as you enter, the wall that your eye often misses. On that wall is a verse from the Gospel of John that reads, “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”


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