Category Archives: Trump

Trump’s Dukakis Moment

I’m old enough to remember how Michael Dukakis got pilloried for this photo op he staged of him riding around in a tank:

There were a lot of reasons for it: Dukakis looked uncomfortable; the public became convinced that he was being a fake — acting against type, doing something he didn’t really believe in — and there was, I always suspected, a tinge of resemblance to the late Alfred E. Newman.

I think there’s a good chance, assuming we’re not under occupation at the time, that we’ll look back at this week’s Trump photo op in the same way.  I’m talking about the one where, after having police clear out lawful protestors from across the White House, in which he holds aloft some random Bible (Q: “Is that your Bible?” A: “It’s a Bible”) while looking — like Dukakis did — as the answer to What Does Not Belong in This Picture?

Acting against type, doing something he doesn’t really believe in.  Not a good look, it turns out.

Posted in 2020 Election, Trump | 3 Comments

Very Hard to Watch

He isn’t shy about it.

Direct link if embed doesn’t work.

Posted in Civil Liberties, Trump | 1 Comment

Friedman Rips, I Mean Rips, Pompeo

To be honest, I only read Thomas Friedman’s column if I’m really trying to procrastinate. I lost patience with him back in the “Friedman Unit” days.

But today’s column is a doozy. Maybe the best column he’s ever done. It’s called Mike Pompeo Is the Worst Secretary of State Ever and it’s got two devastating points.

The first one actually goes back to Pomepeo’s days as Director of the C.I.A:  “while Pompeo was C.I.A. director, the first foreign-planned terrorist attack on U.S. soil since 9/11 was being organized here and abroad, and while he was secretary of state it was carried out.”

Hell, if that were me — if the first foreign-planned terrorist attack on American soil since 9/11 developed on my watch and if I had just gotten rid of the State Department inspector general without explanation — I’d also be trying to distract attention.
I mean, if it were me, I might even claim that China concocted the coronavirus in a lab in Wuhan. Wait — that’s what Pompeo did!

The second point is that, Pompeo “has been the worst secretary of state in American history, without a single diplomatic achievement. …. Pompeo’s two most notable accomplishments as secretary of state are, metaphorically speaking, shooting two of his senior State Department officials in the back.”  One was US Ambassador to the Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch . “The other was the department’s inspector general, Steve Linick, whom Pompeo got Trump to fire, reportedly because he was investigating — wait for it now — Pompeo’s own efforts to evade a congressional ban on arms sales to Saudi Arabia and for improperly asking a State Department employee to run errands for him and his wife.”

But read the whole thing.  I think it almost left scortch marks on the breakfast table.

Posted in The Scandals | Leave a comment

Justice Delayed, Then Denied

Apparently, the official policy of the Justice Department at this moment is that if you are a Trump administration member, the following conduct is not worth prosecuting:

Mr. Flynn … was not forthcoming with Vice President Mike Pence about his conversations with Mr. Kislyak.

Mr. Flynn eventually admitted that those discussions were part of a coordinated effort by the president’s aides to make foreign policy before they were in power, which undermined the policy of President Barack Obama.

Mr. Flynn also lied in federal filings about his lobbying work for the Turkish government, court papers show.

And, furthermore, the FBI should not treat Trump administration members suspected of colluding with foreign governments as if they were — wait for it — suspects.  As the Justice Department revealed in its court filing, by asking about meetings with foreign government representatives,

the [FBI] questioning “was untethered to, and unjustified by, the F.B.I.’s counterintelligence investigation into Mr. Flynn” and that the case did not meet the legal standard that Mr. Flynn’s lies be “materially” relevant to the matter under investigation.

And let’s not even talk about Flynn’s apparent perjury in court and maybe out of it too.

Is it any surprise, therefore, that

In a possible sign of disagreement with the Justice Department decision, Brandon L. Van Grack, the department lawyer who led the prosecution of Mr. Flynn, abruptly withdrew from the case on Thursday.

Add it all to the list.

You know, on days like today, I don’t care what happened in a hallway in 1993, or whether Biden is as sharp as butter.  Maybe I’m a bad person. Or maybe there really is too much at stake.

Update: More details about just how weird and horrible today’s decision to (attempt to) abort the Flynn case — after he’d had guilty pleas accepted twice — can be found in this excellent analysis by Marcy Wheeler.

Posted in The Scandals | 2 Comments

The Brutality Continues

Remember how I said a few days ago that the brutal ads were just beginning? Here’s another one, this time about A Horrifying Illness:

Fortunately, the ad assures us, the “Terrifying Illness” has a cure, which can be applied on Nov. 3, 2020.

The ad is signed by something calling itself “the Sanity Project” — whatever that is. It’s not clear whether they have an actual budget that will allow them to do more than put it online via an account with at this moment has 26 subscribers.

A user going by the name of “Bob Woodiwiss” put the video on YouTube — of course it may or may not be an actual Bob Wodiwiss, and if it is one then it may or may not be the same Bob Woodiwiss who wrote for the Cincinnati Magazine. That guy, incidentally, sounds like a character.

Posted in 2020 Election, Trump | Leave a comment

Goat Gotten

Apparently this video by the Lincoln Project, entitled “Mourning in America” (a sad riff on the famous Ronald Reagan ad), really got Trump worked up into an “unhinged rant” on Twitter:

Posted in 2020 Election, COVID-19, Trump | 6 Comments