Focus on His Silly Border Wall Masks Other Issues which should be Addressed…But President Trump is the master distractor who may be organizing this chaos to take the news headlines away from all the other mayhem he’s brought on, including any Russian news.  The news is further below on the funding for the border wall which Trump is likely to sign the deal Congress just worked out, but first some other interesting reports we found on the newsfeeds.  Former Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul points out the Kremlin is celebrating the chaos they’ve helped bring to America as they waded into our presidential election, plus continue to sow divisions through social media.  McFaul also explains it may have been Putin himself who planted the term deep state inside the minds of conservatives in America, which that revelation is revealed in the article posted below from putin-happy-trump-weakening-united-states-part-strategic-plan-ex-ambassador.

That phony talking point deep state is now being routinely used as a blanket accusation against anyone seen within government agencies as opposing Trump.  So deep state is part of the lexicon trotted out there by Trump, Fox fake news, talk radio & internet sites that their gullible base has been taught to understand the meaning of, so all inside their tribe can be brainwashed into believing deep state denotes some kind of massive/coordinated cabal out to get Trump.  Yes, it’s nuts, but the far-right is prone to accept any of the concocted & crazy echo/Russian propaganda:

A former U.S. ambassador to Russia explained how the Russian government has reacted to its  “operation” to get Donald Trump elected to the American presidency — and what he’s delivered for the country in the two years of his term. “When Trump won, that was a giant party in Moscow,” former ambassador Michael McFaul told political scientist Ian Bremmer in an interview for Gzero Media. “Everybody’s very happy about that and they’re proud of their operation.” Russians may publicly “deny it,” but they privately are happy with the outcome of the 2016 election that McFaul suggested was orchestrated by Russian President Vladimir Putin. “Why shouldn’t they be proud of their operation?” he mused. “With low levels of investment, they got a big return and the punishment for it has been pretty marginal. In the wake of that, that seemed like a great victory.”

McFaul went on to note that the notion of a “deep state” — an alleged cabal of intelligence officials who secretly control American power — was pushed onto Trump by Putin himself. The ambassador recalled the Russian president promoting the “deep state” idea even when Barack Obama was president. “That’s the way that his country runs,” McFaul mused, “so that’s what he thinks it is here, right?” Though the Russian government is “frustrated” on some fronts with Trump, its officials are glad he’s delivered on polarizing and eroding American politics, the ambassador noted. “We’re arguing over shutdowns and we look like fools and we don’t look like a great power right now,” McFaul said. “Add to that the withdrawal doctrine that Trump has done where he withdraws from everything, international agreements, that is a good thing in terms of Putin’s strategic thinking, without question.”

 

Trump Stokes Crazy Crowds

Please share this blog with valuable info in helping others see reason & common sense in their political views, even conservatives who likely won’t like it.  To be blunt about it, the GOP base has lost their way, so we seek to break this curse of the Trump cult which the conservative mindset has fallen for.  As the undisputed leader of the cult, Trump works his unhinged crowds into an uncontrolled frenzy as he demonizes the press, which the most unstable attending those rallies can lose their tempers & cross the line into physical violence: trump-supporter-launches-apos-incredibly & also check out white-house-correspondents-attack-journalist-trump-rally.

We can shriek in horror watching on TV the crowd reactions at those rallies cheering on Trump’s litany of lies, but imagine the terror of journalists there in person just doing their jobs in that overheated atmosphere.  It looks to me those crowds are possessed or something, like described in the final paragraph inside unhinged-and-desperate-conservative-columnist-likens-trump-rally-to-gathering-of-cult-like-followers, & from which the start to this next article donald-trump-el-paso-rally also provides food for thought:

In September of 1934, American journalist William Shirer went to Nuremberg in Germany to see first-hand the political mania that was overtaking that country. He later wrote:

I was a little shocked at the faces. When Hitler finally appeared on the balcony for a moment. They reminded me of the crazed expressions I once saw in the back country of Louisiana on the faces of some Holy Rollers…they looked up at him as if he were a Messiah, their faces transformed into something positively inhuman. “We are strong and will get stronger,” Hitler shouted at them through the microphone, his words echoing across the hushed field from the loudspeakers. And there in the flood-lit night, massed together like sardines in one mass formation, the little men of Germany who have made Nazism possible achieved the highest state of being the Germanic man knows: the shedding of their individual souls and minds—with the personal responsibilities and doubts and problems—until under the mystic lights and at the sound of the magic words of the Austrian they were merged completely in the Germanic herd.

To borrow a phrase from The Master, it’s not dark yet, but it’s getting there. From the BBC:

Sporting a Make America Great Again cap, the man shoved and swore at the BBC’s Ron Skeans and other news crews before being pulled away. Mr Skeans said the “very hard shove” came from his blindside. “I didn’t know what was going on.” Mr Trump saw the attack and confirmed Mr Skeans was well with a thumbs up after it happened.

Nobody who has attended one of these angry wankfests can be surprised this happened. This is especially true of anyone who’s spent time in the press pens that are placed strategically in the back so the president* can direct the wrath of his followers at them easily. Hell, Katy Tur of NBC News had to have the Secret Service walk her out of the building at one of these. The obvious potential for violence is one of the things that fill the arenas, and the members of the media are the obvious (and perennial) targets.

 

We Must Preserve a Free Press/Media

There is no underestimating how serious this next disaster could become, especially when a free democracy must be maintained by the free-flow of accurate information.  We’ve already seen in recent years how many millions of conservatives have been snookered by the lies & conspiracies coming from the echo they plug into, which the crazy conspiracies coming from the alt-right & bad foreign actors on social media are only going to keep ramping up, while being believed by the most naive among us: how-facebook-screwed-us-all & also see what-and-who-should-we-be-afraid-of-on-social-media.  No democracy can survive for long when a significant portion of their population rejects irrefutable reality.

Another major concern is the way social media/internet giants like Facebook & Google are making off with a substantial & increasing amount of media advertising dollars, the revenue that had always gone to support newspapers across the nation with real journalism.  So with all the devastating cuts from media & newspapers happening throughout the country, this threat to a free press is a threat to democracy itself.  Even with local papers, it’s imperative to keep the public informed & hold public officials accountable.  These layoffs announced as seen in excerpts from media-layoffs-job-cuts-at-buzzfeed-huffpost-vice-details-2019-2#gatehouse-media-at-least-60-jobs-since-january-30 are just some of the cuts that have happened overall, with the future looking bleak if nothing’s done to support them as an important public service:

The media industry seemed to be in freefall on Friday following the announcement that Vice Media would cut 10% of its staff, McClatchy Company offered buyouts to 450 employees, and Machinima was closing down, bringing the total number of media jobs cut in 2019 to over 2,200. The massive cuts so far this year represent a recent trend of cuts at digital-media companies that sprung up as newspapers around the country were shrinking and disappearing.

GateHouse Media, one of the largest local newspaper publishers in the US, has been quietly laying off journalists across the country since the end of January. Business Insider has confirmed at least 60 layoffs. The layoffs have largely focused on local sports coverage and photographers, some of who have worked at their papers for over thirty years, but workers across the newsroom and beyond have been cut. The cuts seemingly began after the $30 million acquisition of Schurz Communications Inc., which immediately resulted in 11 cut jobs at three publications in Maine and Indiana.

Since the late-January acquisition, at least 50 other jobs have been claimed at at least 15 other publications. GateHouse is known for its corporate strategy of buying up local papers to digitize them, and making quick cuts. GateHouse has not responded for comment or made any official announcements about the layoffs. On Friday, February 1, The McClatchy Company, which owns properties such as the Miami Herald and the Kansas City Star, emailed staffers to announce that 450 employees would be offered voluntary buyouts as part of a “functional realignment,” essentially signaling that the jobs have been marked out of the budget. The news was first reported by the Miami New Times. The news followed McClathy’s failed attempt to buy the Tribune Publishing company in 2018.

In late January, it was reported that Verizon would cut 7% of its staff at its media companies (an estimated 800 people), which include Yahoo, AOL, and The Huffington Post. “These were difficult decisions, and we will ensure that our colleagues are treated with respect and fairness, and given the support they need,” said Guru Gowrappan, CEO of Verizon Media, in a memo to staff. It’s estimated that 20 employees were laid off at HuffPost last Thursday, including opinion writers, political reporters, and others. Nearly 100 corporate Verizon employees were reportedly laid off in San Francisco. The layoffs are in addition to the 10,400 employees that Verizon is looking to shed by the middle of 2019 as part of a buyout program announced in December.

Newspaper giant Gannett reportedly laid off journalists across the country the same day that Verizon’s layoffs were reported, following a round of voluntary buyouts. Gannett has been quiet about the layoffs, but Poynter reported on cuts that affected editors and senior journalists at local papers owned by Gannett in regions across the US. The New York Post reports that cuts affected as many as 400 people. In total, Gannett owns over 100 news entities. The layoffs came after Alden Global Capital made a $1.3 billion hostile takeover bid to take control of the company, which it says it’s reviewing.

 

McCabe Book

Andrew McCabe has a new book revealing topics of interest the past few years from his perch having a high position within the FBI.  McCabe has also just publicly stated the 25th Amendment was considered to remove the prez after he fired Comey.  As to current criticisms of the FBI, any large organization does have their issues & biases as a natural part of the human condition, since we have free will & should be free to express ourselves.  As a whole the FBI are comprised of trained professionals who don’t let their opinions or ideologies get in the way of their duties.  They can be counted on to do their best in digging up the facts for their vital role of conducting investigations critical to our national security.

The narrative has taken a strange twist as an evil messaging cartel has recently coordinated a massive propaganda campaign designed to smear & discredit the bureau, with way too many Americans buying into this smear campaign.  That is dangerous.  With such a large number of the citizenry looking at the FBI with suspicion & casting doubt on the findings of their probes, it makes for a serious disconnect with the organization we should trust to protect us.  So when lots of Americans view any of our security/intelligence agencies as adversaries, it opens the door for our real enemies to exploit us.  See excerpts providing a review of McCabe’s book from inside the-threat-review-andrew-mccabe-fbi-trump:

Criminal investigations of Trump World and the 2016 presidential campaign continue unabated. Federal prosecutors in Manhattan have placed the president’s inaugural committee and the Trump Organization in their crosshairs. News is rife with talk of subpoenas and the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act – or Rico. Next month, Paul Manafort, Trump’s one-time campaign manager, is scheduled to be sentenced and Michael Cohen, Trump’s former foul-mouthed fixer, will begin a three-year prison term. So this is what “modern presidential” looks like: Donald J Trump meets Goodfellas.

The Threat, Andrew McCabe’s memoir, is subtitled How the FBI Protects America in the Age of Terror and Trump. As he writes, “The FBI has always been the nemesis of criminals. Today the FBI is under attack by the president of the United States.” McCabe’s disdain is born in part of a real-life grudge. A career FBI agent, a lifelong Republican married to a Democrat, he oversaw the FBI inquiries into Hillary Clinton’s emails and Russian election interference. Frequently targeted by Trump for his wife’s failed bid for a seat in the Virginia legislature, in March 2018 McCabe was fired, less than two days before he was slated to retire, by Jeff Sessions, then attorney general, on a recommendation from the FBI Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR).

According to Sessions, McCabe “made an unauthorized disclosure to the news media and lacked candor” during an OPR review of the FBI and justice department’s handling of an investigation into the Clinton Foundation, a charge repeatedly denied by McCabe. The FBI director, Christopher Wray, stated that the firing was not political but was done “by the book”. Suffice to say, many remain unconvinced. These days, Sessions too is out of a job but it is McCabe who has a book. It is definitely worth the read. The Threat is not just another exercise in score-settling, although there is plenty of that.

McCabe paints a portrait of Trump as a mob boss, an observation in sync with Bloomberg’s Josh Green in The Devil’s Bargain and James Comey, the fired FBI director, in A Higher Loyalty. McCabe, however, goes further. Everyone catches it, not only Trump and his minions. The Threat contrasts the independence of the FBI and justice department under Trump and Barack Obama, with McCabe saying “Obama probably came closest to [the] ideal. The current administration is … like nothing we’ve ever seen before.” As reported by the Guardian, McCabe breaks new ground by writing that the president “ordered” Rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general, “to write the memo justifying” the firing of Comey. The Threat should leave the reader worried that our cold civil war is taking its toll on the US and its institutions. As Republicans regularly bash law enforcement, Democrats embrace the intelligence community. We are staring at a world turned upside down.

 

Fox Lies

Trump does work alongside Fox fake news in promoting crazy conspiracy theories, normally with ZERO evidence or taking some report totally out of context: Trump-FREAKS-OUT-Over-Fake-FOX-News-Report-that-42-Million-Latin-Americans-are-Invading-America.  These conspiracies often originate from the underbelly of hazy-shady alt-right websites, where many of these false stories are placed by Trump/echo pundits or even Russian bots.  There’s a pipeline where these preposterous tales resonate throughout the echo, ofttimes being picked up & promoted by Fox or Trump himself.  They’re quick to throw this trash out there with no background checks.

It still remains a great mystery how the right-wing base can consistently believe this stuff!  A former Fox News commentator describes these dynamics as half-witted hosts with an audience full of half-witted people, with nobody inside that bubble seeking the truth as the prez exploits the lies, found in the last part to the article ex-fox-news-guest-hammers-half-witted-hosts-audience-half-witted-people-border-lies:

“Yeah, I’ve been on Fox News before and the problem is [Trump is] going on with a half-witted host who has an audience full of half-witted people who have no interest in truth or facts,” Cross asserted. “The real national emergency here is, Joy, a sea full if ignorant red MAGA hats who have no type of intellectual curiosity about these things.” “They will take this president’s word even if it’s at their own peril,” she continued, “even when it destroys the country that they claim to love so much, even when devastates children they claim to want to protect, even when it runs contrary to a god they claim to serve.” According to Cross, “There is nothing that supports this president’s lies. It’s just a bunch of people that have no interest in truth. They are fact-averse. And this is how he’s able to get away with this time and time again.”

 

The Trump/Hannity Deceitful Duo

Trump & Hannity have always worked in tandem to propagate each other’s lies & conspiracies.  Their ratings have also sunk recently in tandem as Americans are increasingly discovering what liars they are.  Trump has chimed in to help stem his buddy’s declining TV ratings, but we may soon discover not even Hannity can help rescue Trump’s declining presidency.  This entire article does an excellent job of explaining the evil alliance between those two as they plot against America for their own selfish gain, posted from Donald-Trump-Lamely-Tries-to-Rescue-FAILING-Sean-Hannity-s-Arse-Kissing-Hour-on-FOX-News:

Donald Trump would not be president today were it not for the donation of millions of dollars of free airtime to his candidacy by Fox News. The broadcast of his hate-filled cult rallies in their entirety for the months preceding the election allowed Trump to disseminate his message of divisiveness and bigotry to an audience he would never have been able to reach otherwise. Since the election Fox News has continued to serve Trump as his own personal propaganda outlet with hosts and guests who furiously defend everything he says and does, while fiercely attacking his critics. And he continues to get preferential treatment with regard to airtime and interviews. He has done more than forty interviews as president with Fox News, but zero with CNN and MSNBC. And he has another Fox interview next Monday with Laura Ingraham.

However, Trump’s biggest booster on Fox News is indisputably Sean Hannity, who has even appeared on stage at his rallies in violation of Fox News “standards,” such as they are. Hannity devotes most of his program to his sycophantic admiration for Trump and deranged conspiracy theories about everyone from Hillary Clinton to special counsel Robert Mueller. Last summer Hannity let two of Trump’s lawyers guest host his three hour radio show. And, of course, Trump has granted him more interviews than any other television personality. None of that, however, has prevented Hannity’s show from declining in the ratings. What used to be the number program on cable news now loses on an almost nightly basis to MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow. Hannity’s total ratings crashed nineteen percent since the midterms in November. His fall in the coveted, advertiser-friendly 25-54 year old demographic was a massive thirty percent. He is also suffering from an exodus af advertisers along with his colleagues Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham due to their offensive and racist rhetoric.

Consequently, Trump is coming to the rescue of his friend and “shadow” chief-of-staff. On Saturday morning Trump retweeted three of Hannity’s tweets that were typically flattering to the President. The first was an article from Hannity’s website about remarks by the Republican chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee concerning his opinion that no evidence of Trump’s collusion with Russia has been found. That opinion was refuted by the ranking Democrat on the committee, but Trump wasn’t interested in that. Nor was he interested in the mountains of evidence found by the special counsel, other than to whine incessantly that it’s a hoax. The second retweet was an article on Hannity’s website asserting that Ford was investing a billion dollars in two Chicago-area factories, and giving Trump credit for it. But as with every other announcement of this kind, it was either something that had been planned long before Trump was president, something that was merely a proposal with no guarantee, or something that would never actually come to pass. And none of that has ever stopped Trump from taking credit anyway. The third retweet was Hannity’s posting of an article on TheHill by right-wing shill and Trump flunky, John Solomon. The article posited a ludicrous conspiracy theory that Rep. Adam Schiff, the new Democratic chair of the House Intelligence Committee, had met secretly last year with GPS Fusion founder Glenn Simpson, whose company hired the author of the Steele Dossier. No such meeting ever took place, and the article provided no evidence of it. Nevertheless, Hannity posted it and Trump retweeted that posting.

Trump often live-tweets what he’s watching on Fox News. And by the frequency of it, he seems to do nothing else all day long. But he rarely posts multiple tweets in succession promoting a single program. Doing so now, at a time when Hannity’s show is sinking like a rock, seems like Trump is throwing a life preserver to his drowning pal. But this can’t possibly help. If Trump’s followers on Twitter aren’t already watching Hannity, they aren’t ever going to start now. And his retweets certainly aren’t going to slow the rapid growth of Maddow’s program. The problem with Hannity’s show isn’t that there aren’t enough Trump supporters watching it. It’s that Hannity is a repugnant jerkwad whose asskissing is so tedious that even conservatives and Republicans are sickened by it. The problem is that Hannity offers the same noxious blend of lies and insults every night, aimed at the same “villains” he’s been attacking for years. His program is both annoyingly repetitive and presented by an angry mouth-breather who seems less coherent than the schizophrenic on the street corner shouting at passing cars. That has never been a winning formula for television viewing.

 

Deal on the Border Wall

Ever the reality TV star, Trump is milking the drama over signing this border wall deal.  He’s cognizant many in echo-world are not happy with his confounding negotiations that got him only a fraction of the funding he wanted for his wall.  His reluctance & delay are designed to show his base he’s fighting for them.  But his hand is being forced here, as Americans support this new deal & Trump can’t afford politically to start another shutdown.  So in consultation with his key echo talking heads, they’ve decided to capitulate on this deal.  President Hannity will instruct his VP Trump to go ahead & sign it, but watch out for devious shenanigans they’ll likely cook up in finding more money for more border wall: sean-hannity-urges-donald-trump-to-declare-national-emergency-at-southern-border-this-is-the-time.  Their next crackpot scheme may be ready to unleash a reckless executive order declaring a contrived national emergency, where the prez could steal money meant for more worthy causes in other areas.

Here are articles on the border wall deal Trump will reluctantly sign, unless he first signs a one week CR just to delay the inevitable:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/02/13/trumps-wall-lies-illusions-just-cracked-again/?utm_term=.6dedb70cc104

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/02/13/how-trump-lost-border-wall-fight/?utm_term=.a7259e81f002

http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/02/trump-may-claim-hell-get-his-border-wall-money-elsewhere.html

 

Lies & Derangement from El Paso

There’s a stunning pattern that keeps playing out, where Trump & his echo perpetuate a falsehood to advance their positions, then their claims are quickly & easily debunked, but they still double-down & repeat those same lies over & over again.  They just have a total disregard for facts as they live their oblivious reality inside their alternative-facts bubble, where to them the truth becomes lies & their tribal psycho-babble becomes truth.  It’s simply bizarre!

An example comes from the El Paso speech.  Trump vows to finish his border wall, even if he takes lawless actions to do it.  And the lies he repeated in El Paso were shameless, because fact-checkers exposed the truths prior to his speech.  There’s been zero construction on any new wall despite the prez always boasting otherwise.  He also lied the crime rates came down years ago in El Paso after their wall went up, totally untrue.  And he’s lying about crowd size again!  Trump said his crowd was 35,000 & Beto nearby had 200 or 300, while security personnel working those events estimated Beto’s crowd was larger.

It’s just astounding & even insulting how our prez lies constantly to us!  Being so delusional &/or such a pathological liar, we should rightly be concerned our president is actually a psychopath.  And in trying to do his job, he never governs by actually solving problems, the prez only governs by talking points that he can sell to his base.  These are excerpts from Ahead-of-Trumps-El-Paso-rally-Fox—Friends-pushes-lie-that-crime-went-down-after-border where an unhinged president went to El Paso to try selling his border wall:

Trump’s allies on Fox & Friends have already picked up on his lie that violence in El Paso decreased following the construction of border fencing. The morning show hosts are pushing this false narrative as fact even though multiple outlets have already debunked it. During his State of the Union address on February 5, Trump falsely claimed, “The border city of El Paso, Texas, used to have extremely high rates of violent crime – one of the highest in the country, and [was] considered one of our nation’s most dangerous cities.” State and local officials quickly pushed back on this claim. PolitiFact also debunked it, writing that El Paso’s “violent crime rate has been significantly below the national average compared to cities of similar size” every year between 1985 and 2014. And as NBC News reported, “Violent crime has been dropping in El Paso since its modern-day peak in 1993 and was at historic lows before a fence was authorized by Congress in 2006.” Both outlets also noted that the violent crime rate in the city increased after the fence was put up. In fact, the El Paso Times reported, “From 2006 to 2011 — two years before the fence was built to two years after — the violent crime rate in El Paso increased by 17 percent.” But as criminologist Charis E. Kubrin told PolitiFact, the increases or decreases in the city’s crime rate aren’t necessarily linked to the fence. Despite the statistical evidence contradicting Trump’s claims, the hosts at Fox & Friends supported the president in lying about crime rates in El Paso. During the February 11 edition of the show, co-host Ainsley Earhardt claimed that Democrats are “upset with [Trump] saying in the State of the Union address that the wall works in El Paso.” Co-host Brian Kilmeade replied, “Right, which it did.

There are plenty more article titles here about El Paso & the border wall, enough so they’re not live but you could look up if you wish, with the entire article posted below the last link in this list which highlights the lies delivered by Trump during his speech:

washingtonpost/trump-upstaged-el-paso

huffingtonpost/el-paso-trump-rally-carnival-of-lies_us_

slate/trump-followers-believe-lies-wall

msn/finish-the-wall-facing-failure-trump-tries-rebranding

nymag/trump-finish-the-wall-broken-promise

vox/trump-fbi-data-border-fence-el-paso

mediaite/chuck-todd-says-trump-engaging-in-unprecedented-level-of-deception-hes-pretending-to-build-the-wall

mediaite/fox-news-shepard-smith-shuts-down-trumps-claim-hes-building-the-wall-simply-not-true

mediaite/trump-vs-beto-who-has-the-bigger-sized-crowd

alternet/15000-protesters-join-beto-orourke-to-counter-trumps-6500-el-paso-rallygoers-and-reject-hatred-and-bigotry

axios/trump-fact-check-el-paso-rally

President Trump made a number of false claims Monday night during his rally in El Paso as he lobbied for building a southern border wall — including a claim that the arena the rally was held in could fit 8,000 people and that the El Paso Fire Department allowed him to let in 10,000.

Reality check: The fire department said the arena is actually capable of holding even fewer people than that — about 6,500 — and that they did not give Trump permission to admit people beyond the capacity, per El Paso Times. Trump also underestimated the size of Beto O’Rourke’s competing rally, claiming there were between 15 and 300 people. Estimates suggest O’Rourke had between 7,000 and 15,000 people in attendance.

On the wall: Trump said the government has already “built a lot of” the wall. While Congress last year approved an additional 14 miles of extended barrier, there has not been a single mile of wall built since Trump assumed the presidency, the AP reports.

  • Trump claimed a border wall would prevent drugs from coming into the U.S. But the Drug Enforcement Administration determined in 2018 that the majority of drugs coming through the border arrive through official ports of entry.

On immigration and crime: Trump falsely claimed, as he has several times before, that a border wall helped decrease crime in El Paso. In fact, El Paso’s violent crime rate was the second-lowest among similarly sized cities before the wall was built, and the city maintained second place after the wall was erected, the New York Times reports.

  • Trump claimed that about 2% of unauthorized immigrants who are arrested return for their court hearings. The actual number is closer to 72%, according to Justice Department data.

On oil and natural gas: Trump falsely claimed the U.S. is “now the number one producer of oil and natural gas,” when in fact the U.S. has been the world’s most dominant since 2013, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.  

On the Green New Deal: Trump falsely claimed the Democrats’ Green New Deal will ban Americans from owning cows and “shut down American energy” and “air travel.” The plan calls for a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, but does not ban cows or air travel, per the AP.

On experimental drugs: Trump claimed patients couldn’t use experimental drugs while terminally ill before he signed the “Right to Try” law. However, another similar federal program had already been in place, according the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

 

More on the Crazy Fox

The clowns on Fox & Friends along with numerous other buffoons who regularly appear on Fox fake news keep bending over backwards to excuse &/or lie on behalf of their omnipotent leader.  Despite the rubbish they love to spiel to the contrary, there is an abundant amount of credible evidence of widespread crimes & corruption committed by Trump & his minions.  And yes, there’s tons of circumstantial evidence of collusion which investigators are working to uncover all the facts, & this entire episode pointing at a Trump criminal cabal cannot even begin to compare to Benghazi or Whitewater.  This complex Russiagate maze hot on an international trail which at its core may well prove conspiracy to defraud the United States, could end up being a thousand if not a million times worse than those previous presidential scandals: fox-and-friends-on-russia-probes-its-not-like-this-is-benghazi-or-whitewater.

Of course, the Fox prime-time shows are even worse, which is saying a lot!  Major advertisers have become alarmed by the lack of candor, credibility & objectivity coming from those evening shows, questioning the viability of letting the public see their companies associated with such controversial fringe shows.  And as Americans, we keep questioning some in that audience who get ALL their news from Fox & the rest of the echo, avoiding & ignoring the real news.  Check out this op-ed posted from FOX-News-Primetime-Shows-are-So-Offensive-that-Fox-is-Actually-Afraid-to-Sell-Them-to-Advertisers, where near the end of the article they even use the word ignoramuses:

There’s been a pretty steady stream of bad news lately for Fox News. Most prominent is the success of MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, along with many of her colleagues. She has beaten her Fox competition, Sean Hannity, nearly every night since early November, after the midterm election. Fox is also hurting from the exodus of advertisers due to the racist commentaries of their featured hosts. And they can’t be happy about Donald Trump coming to their aid, with all the baggage he brings along. On top of that, Fox is embarrassing itself with ludicrous lies, flagrant Trump sycophancy, and hosts who brag that they have nauseating personal hygiene practices. And in the midst of these self-made messes, Fox has to pitch their network to advertisers in the upcoming “upfront” sales season when networks make their cases to the advertising community for the new year. Given their ratings failures and sinking reputation, Fox is going to have a hard time making their network seem appealing.

In other words, Fox is trying to downplay the programs hosted by their biggest stars during primetime, the most watched daypart. This is an unprecedented display of cowardice for a television network. It would be like CBS trying to downplay “The Big Bang Theory” and “CSI” in favor of some daytime game shows. Variety quotes a Fox advertising executive as saying that they want to press “against the notion that the network is only for conservatives.” It’s way too late for them to sell that nonsense. Fox doesn’t even use the “fair and balanced” slogan anymore. They ditched it for “Real News,” an obvious suck-up to Trump. Everyone knows that Fox News is now just a surrogate for the White House. They have become the closest thing to State TV that America has ever known. And now the ad sales people think that advertisers can be fooled into believing that Fox is “transcending its own genre and becoming popular culture, thanks in part to the Trump presidency.”

But there are two problems with that theory. First, Trump is decidedly unpopular. He has record low approval ratings hovering in the upper thirties on most polls (despite Trump’s lame effort to convince people that he’s universally beloved). And secondly, by positioning the network as popular culture, Fox is admitting that they are not news. Of course, anyone who has been paying attention already knows that Fox hasn’t been a legitimate news network in years, if ever. They have few, if any, reputable journalists. They have never won a journalism award from the Pulitzers, the Emmys, or any other industry association. Their program hosts are more like cheerleaders for Trump, who actually appear on stage with him at his rallies. The problem for Fox is that advertisers are not the sort of ignoramuses who watch Fox. They deal with multimillion dollar budgets and they know what they’re buying. By pretending that Fox isn’t the equivalent of Trump TV, their ad sales people will only be insulting the intelligence of the media buyers. And if Fox thinks that’s going to pump up sales, they’re as stupid as their audience – and their President.

 

GOP Following Their Leader into Depravity

Just wanted to show you this, the radical nudniks spreading lies & deception every time they open their mouths.  This is a link which if you click it on, you’ll immediately see on your screen a pic of those 3 stooges, truly a congressional idiot brigade: government-shutdown-conservatives-trump-wall.  Rubin from inside democrats-should-embrace-double-standard points out the Dems are calling out their own in Virginia, but posted here is the beginning of her op-ed that Republicans haven’t shown the moral fortitude to call out their party’s obvious indiscretions:

President Trump bragged about sexually assaulting women; was accused by numerous women of sexual harassment or assault; endorsed a candidate for Senate who was credibly accused of child molestation; praised an aide despite photographic evidence supporting accusations of spousal abuse; directed that hush money be paid to women in advance of the 2016 election (arguably in violation of federal campaign finance laws); and routinely smeared and insulted women. He refused to divest his business properties, leading to widespread conflicts of interest and receipt of potentially unconstitutional emoluments. He repeatedly interfered with an ongoing investigation and was forced to close his foundation after discovery of widespread financial impropriety. Now we learn, through reporting in The Post, about a far-flung operation that sourced and employed illegal immigrants for a Trump property. (Frank Sharry of America’s Voice told me, “Long before Trump shamelessly exploited the fear of undocumented immigrants for political gain, he shamelessly exploited the labor of undocumented immigrants for private profit.

The hypocrisy is stunning. The lawlessness seems clear. State and federal investigations into possible labor, trafficking and conspiracy are needed.”) An ordinary business would be under investigation, facing massive fines. And yet, with all that and much more, not a single Republican member of Congress has called for Trump’s impeachment or resignation. None has even demanded he decline to run for reelection. Supposedly respected Republican pundits defend him, vilify Trump critics, abhor congressional oversight and support his reelection. After all, they got their huge tax cuts for the rich and two Supreme Court appointments to their liking. The moral failure and abject irresponsibility of the Republican Party, its donors, its activists and its countless enablers continue to shock and dismay the rest of America. Have these Republicans no standards, no decency? They do not.

 

He’s a Deplorable

Trump makes it very easy for the majority of the American people to detest him just based on who he is, simply a detestable human being in so many ways: the-four-layers-of-trump-disapproval.  Trump is passing on his mental health problems to the population at large while also lowering birth rates: has-trump-wrecked-our-sex-life-post-trump-sex-disorder-is-real-says-sex-therapist.  Boot singles out our superhero presidential leader when he can constantly spin his lying, gaslighting, corruption & con game into the greatest, bestest & terrificest without the least bit of hesitation, self-reflection or shame.  It takes a special kind of narcissistic psychopathy to be able to pull that off, since his Trumpeter base is actually buying his false bravado.  There should be some kind of award for this, as we can read the accolades bestowed upon Trump in most of this article posted from trumps-superpower-is-his-shamelessness:

Mercifully free of these handicaps and hang-ups, Super Trump is able to base his entire political career on anti-immigrant demagoguery — while employing undocumented immigrants to build his signature tower in New York (a lair worthy of Bruce Wayne) and to service his hotels and golf courses. Just last week, The Post discovered an entire town in Costa Rica full of workers who illegally entered the United States to work for Trump with the apparent connivance of his managers. Trump wants to mandate the use of E-Verify to check the immigration status of employees — but only three of his 12 U.S. golf courses use it. A normal politician would slink off in embarrassment and never mention illegal immigration again. But Super Trump continues to vilify undocumented immigrants as though his businesses did not rely upon them. So, too, a president who did not possess the superpower of shamelessness would hesitate to brag “No president ever worked harder than me (cleaning up the mess I inherited)!” just minutes after sharing with his Twitter followers what he just saw on Fox News and CNN. He might also hesitate, after such a tweet, to play golf again anytime soon — something he has done a record-breaking number of times as president after having had the temerity to criticize his predecessor for playing too much golf. But rest assured: Super Trump will hit the links the next opportunity he gets.

An ordinary politician with Trump’s history would not have sent a tweet gloating after two top Virginia Democrats were caught in racist scandals and another was accused of sexual assault. After all, Trump has a lifelong history of racist actions and utterances, and he has been accused of groping and worse by 13 women. But Super Trump is undaunted. “Democrats at the top are killing the Great State of Virginia,” he blithely tweeted. “If the three failing pols were Republicans, far stronger action would be taken.” He then went straight from channeling the anger over Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) posting a blackface photograph in his medical school yearbook to engaging in racist attacks against Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) — even turning the Trail of Tears into a campaign punchline. But perhaps Trump’s most impressive use of his superpower is his complaining that he is a victim of “PRESIDENTIAL HARASSMENT!” He tweets that “The Democrats in Congress yesterday were vicious and totally showed their cards for everyone to see. When the Republicans had the Majority they never acted with such hatred and scorn!” And: “The Dems and their committees are going ‘nuts.’ The Republicans never did this to President Obama, there would be no time left to run government.”

A lesser politician would have hesitated to say something like this after having spent years hyperventilating about supposed Democratic scandals such as Hillary Clinton’s emails, a federal loan for a failed solar-panel firm called Solyndra, Operation Fast and Furious (a failed Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives sting operation), the politicization of the Internal Revenue Service, the sale of a uranium mine to a Russian-controlled company, the deaths of diplomats in Benghazi, Libya, and, of course, President Barack Obama’s birth certificate. Another politician might even have stopped to speculate whether calling one’s political opponent a crook and demanding that she be locked up might, possibly, conceivably, be evidence of “hatred and scorn.” But not Super Trump! I know it sounds as though I’m mocking Trump. Perish the thought. I am genuinely in awe of his ability to surmount normal human limitations. Unlike the rest of us, he is not hobbled by fact, consistency or logic. Hypocrisy is a concept as alien to him as Kryptonite. He simply says or tweets the first thing that comes into his head without worrying about how what he just said can be squared with his previous utterances or actions. If he thought too long about any of these things, he would be crippled by self-doubt — and then he would just be another failed real estate speculator. Instead, thanks to his super power, he is the most powerful man in the world. All he has to do is say “Shameless!” to himself and he can smite any foe.

 

Trump Evangelicals

Evangelicals remain strongly supportive of this morally-degenerate prez based on him being pro-life.  But this next op-ed makes strong arguments with numerous examples Trump is actually the least pro-life leader imaginable: trump-is-not-pro-life.  While evangelicals are seeing short-term gains for their ongoing loyal support of Trump, the long-term consequences for the church could be disastrous.  Here is the last part to the article in-revering-trump-the-religious-right-has-laid-bare-its-hypocrisy:

It is hardly necessary here to reiterate the myriad sins that Trump has openly committed or the blithe ignorance of scripture he betrayed during the presidential campaign. All that matters is that more than 80% of white evangelicals conveniently forgot their prior concern with presidential character to vote for Trump, and this faction has remained his most loyal base. For his part, as we know, Trump has delivered the goods: two anti-abortion justices appointed to the supreme court, a ban on transgender people in the military, removal of a tax-code provision that barred religious institutions from explicitly endorsing political candidates. In order to square the particular circle of how a serial adulterer, casino mogul, and all-purpose bigot can be deserving of their support, pious Christians have concocted a brand-new theological work-around. It depicts Trump as the modern-day King Cyrus, the pagan monarch of ancient Persia who allowed the Jewish captives of Babylon to return to their holy land. Presidential press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders – lest we forget, the daughter of the minister-politician Mike Huckabee – succinctly explained that God “wanted Donald Trump to become president”.

From the perspective of Democrats and progressives, the impregnable evangelical fortress around Trump can look like a problem. As proven electoral activists and bloc voters, evangelicals exert disproportionate power. Certainly, they will make sure that any Republican-primary challenger to Trump is defeated. And in another close general election, they hold huge balloting power in such swing states as Georgia, Florida, North Carolina, Iowa, and Michigan. Instead, though, Americans of the center and left ought to feel liberated by the eligious right’s embrace of Trump. It has broken a spell. In a way that secular or less-observant people are reluctant to admit, they often feel inadequate to the task of arguing politics, much less religion, with fundamentalists. Few of us know the relevant texts or theologies, and even if we do, we default to the faulty premise that religion shouldn’t be part of political decision-making. (Which would have come as a shock to King, for one.) Under King Cyrus Trump, however, the religious right has laid bare its hypocrisy, and indeed its heresy. We can feel emboldened to fight our opponents like any other political movement rather than as devout believers whose direct line to the Almighty, and whose resulting presumption of moral superiority, we have no way of empirically disproving.

In time, perhaps, white evangelicals will recover some of their ethical and religious moorings. A younger generation of such evangelicals is making its way through high school and college now, and registering its disgust with Trumpian Christianity, even at Jerry Falwell Jr’s Liberty University. Among the older generation, at least a few believers of principle, such as former George W Bush staffers Michael Gerson and Peter Wehner, have eloquently decried the evangelical movement’s self-inflicted wounds. Until some larger-scale period of penance comes for white evangelicals, anyone familiar with Judeo-Christian history might offer an alternative precursor to Trump than King Cyrus. My own nomination would be a 17th-century Turkish Jew named Shabbetai Zevi, who pronounced himself the Messiah. For some subsequent years, there were Jews who actually believed him, so great was their despair at persecution and dispersal. Then, abruptly, their messiah converted to Islam. When scholars today look back at Shabbetai Zevi, they assess him most charitably as a madman, and less generously, as a fraud.