Famous Last Words

“I don’t think Manafort will flip.”

Yeah, I said that a while back.  And then yesterday, he did just that.  And Mueller’s office’s apparent claim that they had no interest in his story suddenly turned out to be an expert bluff.

I’d hate to play Mueller at poker.

I’ll write more later about what I make of this whole situation.  Meantime, I understand Trump is tweeting about something unrelated being Obama’s fault.

Advertisements

Persona non grata

Been around a long time.  Can’t recall any president ever being shut out of social events and rituals.

Memes are flying that Trump has been excluded from “two funerals and a wedding,” but the truth is that he was only excluded from two funerals.  The royal wedding thing was never an issue except that Trump was stupid and churlish enough to insist on being invited (only to find himself being left to pout when he wasn’t).

Fact is that Obama wasn’t invited to Prince William’s wedding, and he wasn’t invited to Prince Harry’s wedding even though he and Harry are friends.  American presidents (and ex-presidents) are walking security headaches on top of all the security headaches already caused by a royal wedding.  So they don’t get invited, period.

So that brings us back to the funerals.  Again, I’ve seen presidents send their wives or other dignitaries to various funerals in their stead, but I’ve never seen a president be specifically excluded in the first place.

Nothing much to add here except that I’ve noted that Trump’s cult is already attacking the family of John McCain.  To that I say, “really?  What the hell is wrong with you people?  Trump hated McCain anyway — why would he even want to be at the funeral?”

Or this: “why does hearing the truth hurt you so much?”  This is, after all, what the cultists are getting their knickers in a knot about.  They are deliberately ignoring the remarkable fact that Trump was specifically excluded from the guest list.

And so I’ll leave alone that they don’t deal with the fact that their hero is all too obviously persona non grata in polite society, and stress that they prefer to deflect by taking cheap shots at the families of newly-dead people…even families of war heroes when their own hero dodged the draft 5 times in the same era.

There is, after all, very little to successfully defend in Trump – and so his cultists latch on to fantasy, and fiercely attempt to castigate whoever they perceive as hurting their dear leader.  (BTW, Trump was never mentioned by any of the speakers, so how do these cultists know the speakers’ words were about him?)

As I’ve said in other posts, there is a small portion of U.S. society who will never be able to leave the cult.  Let’s hope a few of the rest wake up.  Maybe they already have; I have very little use for polls, but a recent one states that an astounding 60% of the U.S. public disapprove of Trump.  If that percentage includes even a few former Trump-suckers, it’s a hopeful sign.

If he only had a brain

I’m sitting here wondering if you actually have to have a brain in order to get a headache.  If you don’t, there are more than a few people in D.C. who must be in agony tonight.

While clubbing the moles that kept popping up on my news feed tonight (Cohen pleads guilty to 8 charges!  Manafort found guilty on 8 counts!  Cohen implicates Trump!) I kept thinking, crap…this just keeps getting worse for Trump, doesn’t it?

But not just for Trump.  I also ran across this article, which explains that the Russian-Republican connection possibly extends all the way back to the Nixon era.  I want everyone to read this, especially if you believe the whole Trussia debacle just popped out of thin air in 2016.

This article explains so many things, not the least of which is the sudden fear and awe that Republicans seemed to hold for Trump after many of them vehemently opposed him during the campaign and right up to the convention.  Hell, Lindsay Graham was an outspoken critic until he played golf with Trump one day.  He’s been cowering ever since.  Want to know why?  Read the article.  (This article may also explain Reagan’s much-touted “success” in dissolving the Soviet Union — the truth may be that the oligarchs just had no use for the Soviet Union because they weren’t making money off of it, so they let Reagan have the win so they could have Russia and he could go down in the history books, at least temporarily, as a tough-guy hero.)

Meantime, back to Cohen and Manafort…

I don’t think Manafort will flip.  I think he will conclude that he and his family are better off with him staying in prison and silent; he’s had too many dealings with very dangerous people for him or his family to escape unharmed if he started talking.

I could be surprised; I’d like to be.  Nevertheless, the charges against him in the first trial  had little to do with Trump.  I believe the whole thing was just a warm-up to test the judicial waters and see what might happen.  Could Manafort have information that would be useful to Mueller?  I believe Mueller has said no, they don’t need him.  So maybe it’s all settled and Manafort will go quietly to rot in prison; Manafort, the guy who for years thought he was James Bond, only to find out today that he is mere cannon fodder.

The other theory is that these people believe they are bullet-proof, and Manafort is truly dumbfounded to have been convicted.  If that’s the case, all bets are off; he could do anything.  But I still doubt he’ll flip.

Cohen, on the other hand, is not only talking but is implicating Trump.  Because of Cohen, Trump is now officially an unindicted co-conspirator.  That’s the same place Nixon ended up in just before he resigned.

Will Trump resign?  I doubt it; see the “bullet proof” paragraph above.  Trump doesn’t get it.  It goes back to that brain thing I was talking about earlier.  He may have a headache and he may freak out on Twitter.  But he lacks the organ that would help him make sense of it all.

Seriously, today changed everything.  Whether it will stay changed or if we will revert to wafting aimlessly through a bottomless pit of distractions while the investigation drags on forever…well here’s the thing: we won’t know until tomorrow, or maybe the day after, or maybe the week or month after.  And that’s hell.

Going to the store now for popcorn and aspirin.

Letter to a Cultist

Dear Trump-sucker:

You probably are not reading this because (1) you don’t read, (2) this is a center/left blog, and (3) you don’t identify yourself with the word “cultist.”  But that’s okay.  You are a cultist anyway.

Your cult is that of Trump.  You are the one sitting there yelling at an NBC news broadcast about Trump’s stupid sanctions that Trump is right to start a trade war with China and all these “snowflakes” whining about being hurt financially — well too bad.  “That’s temporary.”  Yep.  That’s what you said.  I heard you.

Never mind that what you said is not backed up by fact; it’s what you want to believe.  And here’s the kicker: you desperately want me to agree with you; otherwise you would not sit there screaming at a public television set and keep looking at me, begging, “Right?  Right?”

Not only that, but I know a lot about you because you voted for Trump.  I know who you are at your very base: you are a frightened bully.  You are also limited intellectually and vacant spiritually, even if you are waving a college degree in my face to prove otherwise and you attend church every Sunday without fail.

You support Trump because you see in him a kindred spirit, and also a sort of Superman who will fix all your problems for you.  You are likely a fan of reality TV shows and professional wrestling.  You consider yourself to be a guardian of patriotism, which to you is some vague combination of flag worship and a blurry photo of the Constitution (which you have never read), coupled with a 4th of July parade and cookout.  You probably also believe in witches, ghosts, conspiracy theories, Evangelical preachers, and whatnot.  You definitely think Russia is our friend.  You have chosen to believe that the world would be safer if we armed toddlers, and school kids would be safer if they were only nicer to other school kids who might shoot them.  (Abortion = BAAAAD; School shootings = the victims’ fault!  Guns are GOOD!)

And I know that if asked, you will tell me to my face that Fox News is the only news outlet that tells the truth.  (Never mind that they admit that they’re not even a news outlet.)  In short, you are a perfect sucker for Russian propaganda, and may have actually been identified as such on Facebook.

You are also a racist POS, pure and simple.

Yes, I know all of this about you.  And I know another thing: when this finally ends, you will be left completely on your own.  No one will want to come near you.  You will be labeled toxic.

How will you respond?  Denial.  Blame.  Anger.  Confusion and butthurt.  This is how bullies behave.

Your media will spend decades spinning conspiracy theories, trying to prove that Trump was innocent…but no matter.  No one will give a flying shit about you, and you will die alone.

Have fun in hell, darling.  Meantime, fuck off; I want to watch the news.

–the worstat

 

For when it’s all over except for the thing that won’t happen

I have run out of things to talk about.  Every week brings a new scandal to the Trump administration, but yet nothing is new, so I never find anything worthy of comment.

The MSM keeps falling for it as if it were new, as does the Chicken Little squad on Facebook and Twitter, who now almost weekly declare us to be on the precipice of WWIII, a new Great Depression, or magically — after just a year and a half of Trump — so far down the rabbit hole that we won’t recover for millennia.   The latest: Trump is a dictator!  Yes, he — or rather, those who are propping him up, as he has no real power at this point — has/have enough within his/their range to do damage.  But no…he is not a dictator and won’t be unless we allow it, and that is the point here.

I’m convinced some of these CL folks are bots (think of a modern day Tokyo Rose), and of course others are depressives who are looking to share their joy, sarcastically speaking.  But it’s the rest of the Resistance that concerns me: normal people who are just worn out.

Yes, we are worn out.  More and more of my Resistance friends are taking time-outs because they just can’t handle it anymore.  When every day brings another pile of the same old bullshit, and nothing ever really changes no matter what bullshit bomb explodes, it gets old.

Mueller (our only hope until November), is taking his old sweet time as if Rome weren’t burning.  (Yes, we are burning, but is it the end of us?  No.)  It’s said that his investigation is months ahead of whatever knowledge the general public has been given, but still, it never seems to be enough.  Funny that people were talking about impeaching Obama because even his authentic birth certificate wasn’t authentic enough for them — first it was because he hadn’t released the birth certificate, then it was because he released the short form, then when he released the long form, it wasn’t written by God and handed down on the mountain.   Yet even Trump’s known Mob connections and his obvious kowtowing to Putin (yes, the two are related)…well, that’s okay with the same people.  Move along, nothing to see here.

Obviously we are dealing partially with a cult (Trump’s supporters in the general population), and with members of a crime syndicate (Trump’s politician and oligarch supporters).  That doesn’t bother me much.   The sector of the population that sucks up to Trump is a minority, and many in that minority are in that sector simply because they are ill-informed.  The rest are true brainwashed cultists and there is nothing you can do with them.  As for the politicians, they can be dealt with at the polls.  Two of them — McConnell and Ryan — could end Trump right now, but won’t.  That tells me they are in the syndicate, so they must be dispensed with legally, in November.  Ryan, in fact, has already seen the writing on the wall and has elected to retire.

So the minority — or what they threaten to do if Trump is deposed, which the MSM keeps trying to scare us with — is not the problem; it’s the effect this lengthy wait is having on the rest of us that is the problem.  As I’ve said in the past, it isn’t just Mueller investigating Trump’s ties to an extra-national crime syndicate.  Just about the entire world is investigating it.  This could be what is holding Mueller back — perhaps he’s waiting on someone else’s investigation, since this whole thing is definitely international (yes!  this is what the right-wing “deep state” yammering is about, if they’re not actually admitting that there is an extra-national crime syndicate that is controlling large parts of the world).  But still the wait has worn thin, and the accumulated damage is now too great to ignore.  People are dying.  The global economy is being jerked around by puppet strings.  The environment is being damaged for short-term financial gain.

Houston, we have a problem.

The other argument is that Mueller is waiting to have the perfect case before he takes Trump down.  I don’t buy it because Mueller has to be able to see that he is dealing with idiots.  Even a traffic ticket might be enough to take the Trump administration down at this point, just because they are so stupid that they probably couldn’t argue their way out of it without making it one hundred times worse for themselves.

That is in our favor.  I say “use it.”  I also say that if we are dealing with an administration that so easily and carelessly flouts the law — we are living in a Constitutional crisis as we speak because of that — then we need to stop dissecting whether or not a sitting president can be indicted.

Go ahead.  Try it.  At this point, let’s see what happens.  In short, do something.

 

 

We hold these truths to be B.S.

I meant to write this a while back, but then the 2nd fake Syria attack happened and I had one more thing to add to my list.

The thing is, there are lots of “truths” that keep being repeated by the MSM and by commenters on Twitter and Facebook.  And these “truths” are false.

Perhaps the #1 example is that Hillary Clinton lost the election.  She did not.  She won by at least three million votes.  What happened after that is anybody’s guess, but before beating this particular dead horse again, people need to consider the following facts:

(1) she won by at least three million votes;
(2) according to some people investigating the election, Trump won a number of swing states by the same improbable 1% margin;
(3) this gave the already-suspect Electoral College an excuse to give Trump the presidency instead of doing their actual job, which is to prevent rabble* from taking over the country.

Really.  That’s what happened.  And that’s why any further speculation about the Democrats being “out of touch” (with who?  30% of the population?), or Hillary being too old-school or any other such pontificating, is pointless.

Oh, and there’s the other thing about the election itself: I keep hearing that Russia swung the election via bots and trolls and fake news, and harassing people on Facebook.  No.  No.  And no.  All Russia managed to do on FB in particular (and they’re still doing it) is spread false news, provide an echo chamber for those who already believed that shit, and harass the hell out of those who did not.  I’m guessing that this did not affect the election one bit.

If you still believe it did, please answer a question for me: if the Russians had such power over our minds that inserting bots and trolls and fake news into Facebook (targeting voters whose FB information had been stolen) had an actual effect, is it realistic to think they stopped there?  Why didn’t they seal the deal by stealing actual votes and altering actual outcomes?  Were they that confident of their propaganda and bullying?  Really?

I’ll go there for you: they stole the election, with a great deal of help from an already corrupt system the Republicans had had in place for at least 2 decades.  See the 4th paragraph above.  Stop being innocent.

The other crap “truth” that I keep hearing is that the 2nd amendment guarantees personal gun ownership.  It does not.  I’m referring this one to a Keith Olbermann video on the subject because I cannot state it any better or more clearly than he has.

Come to think of it, here’s an answer I want to hear from anyone who claims that banning abortion will stop abortion, but banning guns will not stop people from getting guns: how, exactly, does that work?

Further, does the notion that you cannot stop murder of actual, viable human beings (not zygotes) because people are going to do it anyway…doesn’t that legitimize murder?

Anyway, on to Syria.  Kudos to those who shrugged at the news of bombs being dropped, again, on empty targets because Trump had tipped off Putin and Assad in advance (again).  That was, in fact, most of us.  But there were still far too many on both Twitter and Facebook who gave in to hysterics about WWIII, and the MSM seemed to give the event far too much credence, at least at first.  Apparently Putin influenced our media in trying to scare his own population into submission by laying on the WWIII shit with a trowel, and that’s concerning.

As for the FB and Twitter folks, there will always be Chicken Little’s who are terminally unable to distinguish between a couple of bombs landing on an empty building and a major global conflagration.  These folks get furious and wildly defensive when you try to set them straight, and so there is nothing you can do about them except wait for the truth to come out — because with Trump’s antics, it always does rather quickly — and hope that will shut them up.  Until the next time.

As most of the rest of us recognize, this was nothing but Operation Stormy Daniels…Trump was trying to distract from the only thing that means anything to him, which is tabloid scandal, because he believes we are all as shallow as he is.

This brings me to another point.  As of this moment, the big scandal is Michael Cohen and his “client list,” which includes the inexcusable Sean Hannity.  People are all excited, claiming that Michael Cohen is the answer to the whole thing and that soon Trump will go to jail.

No.  My prediction is that by next week Cohen will still be in deep trouble, but the entire subject will have been supplanted by another scandal.  And so on.  And so forth.  And all this shit will drag on and on and on.

Oh, and here’s another “truth:” if Trump is deposed, the media sages gravely warn, it will upset his (presumably heavily armed and irrational) base.  What the hell does that mean?  That the rest of us — some 70% of the population — have to live like this so the minority can remain comfortably delusional?  What the fuck?

OH, and how can I forget the old warhorse wail, “but Pence is worse!”  Assholes, if Pence assumes the Presidency (and I daresay this is not an issue, because he will not), he will not last long for a number of reasons.  So let’s just leave this one alone.  I cannot believe anyone honestly wants to keep Trump for fear of Pence.  It’s just stupid.  DROP it.

I’m sure I’ll be editing this heavily in coming days as other faux truths come to mind, but for the time being I’ll leave it at this: don’t rely on slogans to make up your mind.  Do your research.

In short, don’t fall for bullshit.

*definition of “rabble” is debatable; some claim it was to prevent more populated states from having undue influence on the vote.  Nowadays, however, I would apply “rabble” to right-wingers and certain of their counterparts on the left wing.

What I think happened

It’s said that we are approaching the last days of the Trump nightmare, but certain people have been saying that for a long time.  I won’t hazard a guess about it at this point.

What I can guess is what will be revealed when all is said and done.  Here’s what I think:

(1) Trump had been considering running for president since the 1980’s.  What finally pushed him into a halfway serious effort was his intense jealousy of Obama, which was and is driven in part by Trump’s deeply-held racism.  He probably honestly thought the job was easy if a black man could do it.  This means he didn’t really want the actual job (face it, he has no grasp of the actual job); he just wanted the veneer, which he assumed was instant adoration and status, and unlimited power to do whatever the fuck he wanted.  I also believe this is how he handled it mentally when he found out he had been given the election, and that the real job of President is anything but a cakewalk: he retreated into a bubble of imagined adoration and unlimited power.

It’s either that or he was looking for the prestige of being a past presidential nominee from a major party — the prestige he and the complicit media are now trying to deny Hillary Clinton — to catapult him into competition with Murdoch, at the head of his own reicht-wing propaganda media network.  In a way this latter guess is encouraging because, given that Trump has a habit of going full bore into dying industries (only to go bankrupt), it means that right-wing media is in its death throes.

(2) Trump has long-term financial ties to Russia; he has been both borrowing money from and laundering money for Russia for decades.  This way he could and can have others do the dirty work and sign the dirty papers for him.  Meantime, for a long time he pretended to be a billionaire guru on a cheap TV show.  Beats working…or as one of his (supposed) fellow billionaires pointed out, why would a billionaire need to be a host of a realty show?  To keep the illusion going that he is a billionaire.

(3) Tied together by endless money deals, Putin and Trump are part of the same international oligarch mob.  Putin is definitely either the boss or a higher-up; Trump is a wannabe and is being hazed and used by his would-be peers.

When Putin heard of Trump’s plan to run for president — semi-seriously, for a change — he saw an opportunity to not only disrupt the U.S. election process to benefit himself and the other oligarchs in that mob, but also to install what he thought would be an all-powerful puppet in Washington D.C.  This has been illustrated by some of Putin’s behavior, especially early on when he had the sheer gall to try to address the U.S. public, issuing vague threats as to what would happen if people didn’t stop interfering with Trump.

Putin did not and does not understand U.S. government or the majority of the U.S. population.  This blind spot is a major weakness for him.  Keep this in mind.

(4) And so Russia majorly interfered in the U.S. election — I believe even to the point of altering votes.  They did this using an election-corruption system the Republicans (who were also bought off by the Russians) have had in place for at least 30 years, as well as their own internet-trolling expertise.  The result was that to his own shock, Trump magically won enough swing states — by the same magical 1% margin! — to make the corrupt Electoral College look innocent in installing him in spite of Clinton’s large popular-vote lead.

Somewhere around this time, I believe this scenario played out: “Oh shit,” Trump thought, “now I have to play President or else Putin is going to poison me.”  (Yes, he is afraid of being poisoned.)

Since then he and the Republicans, with the blessings of the oligarch mob, have been busy carving up the U.S. melon.  This is because they believe they can breathe, eat, drink, sleep and shit money, and to hell with the Earth or anyone else who lives on it.

Yes, that’s it.  Not that it’s nothing, but I think this is what it will boil down to when all is said and done: it was all an internal and extra-national mob scheme.  Trump is crooked and deserves to be in prison, but he is not the mastermind; he is a puppet.  It is still unclear whether Putin works for the oligarchs or the oligarchs work for him (and I should mention that several of the oligarchs are American), but we’ll find that out eventually as other countries — not the U.S., which will be exhausted after ousting the Trumps — reveal what they know about the whole situation.

And yes, I do believe everything is already known.