Who Needs Civil War Statues When We Have Trump?

August 17, 2017

By Karen

Donald Trump’s only consistency is that whenever he expresses a reasonable thought, he’s compelled to flip it into something bonkers. He can’t help himself, and nobody seems able to stop him.

His flip-flops on the Charlottesville riots are the latest — perhaps most egregious — examples. In my previous post is video of his first two prepared statements. His ad lib in the first one blaming “many sides” set everyone’s hair on fire. Two days later he tried again and read mean things he clearly didn’t believe about the KKK and neo-Nazis.

Then the very next day, in a berserk press conference on infrastructure, Trump insisted the residents of Charlottesville deserved blame because they didn’t have a permit to repel racists who invaded their city with flaming torches. But then he added that “both” sides have some “fine people.”

Yeah, like those few good Mexicans who slip into the country along with the drug dealers and rapists.

The Washington Post has exposed Trump’s KKK tie by resurrecting how his father Fred was an active member who got arrested at a riot in Queens in 1927.

Trump may resent Charlottesville’s residents for picking on what he sees as his heritage. Any of those white supremacists could have been Dad.

At the end of that press conference, he flipped AGAIN on Charlottesville, bragging about owning a home there and claiming it’s the biggest winery in the United States.

Lies on both counts. The Trump Winery website has this disclaimer, where son Eric makes clear who’s the boss there…

“Trump Winery is a registered trade name of Eric Trump Wine Manufacturing LLC, which is not owned, managed or affiliated with Donald J. Trump, The Trump Organization or any of their affiliates.”

And as of 2016, the winery qualified as the largest vineyard in Virginia by acreage, but it lagged far behind others statewide and nationally in wine production.

And now Trump has weighed in on the one piece he knows NOTHING about — Confederate statues. Unsurprisingly, he wants to keep them because he has no understanding whatsoever of what they signify. He conflated George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, founders of the country, with Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson, who fought to tear it in half for the preservation of slavery.

It’s increasingly clear that the only way to stop attracting Trump’s roaches to the South is to get rid of the bait. Stonewall Jackson’s great-great-grandsons wrote a great letter about his statue on Monument Avenue in Richmond.

They live here and want the statue to go. It’s a must-read.

We could use Charlottesville to take this conversation in a new direction. Rather than dwelling on Trump’s shifty positions and motivations, we should focus on making him answerable for being a racial divider — in addition to his myriad personal conflicts of interest and destructive actions on trade, climate change, and foreign relations.

Yes, I’m talking about impeachment. It’s time to start that discussion.

PS: Richmond just caught a break. The guy who applied for a permit to rally around the Lee statue on Monument Avenue on September 16 withdrew because he doesn’t want the haters to show up.

BONUS: Seth Meyers takes a closer look. #insightful #hilarious


Trump Regretfully Renounces Bigotry

August 14, 2017

By Karen

What the beleaguered residents of Charlottesville, Virginia, didn’t need was for Donald Trump to throw shade on them as one of “many sides” guilty of violence last Saturday.

They had as much justification to turn out in force — again — to repel white supremacists from their city as Trump thinks he has to repel Mexicans with a wall.

The only difference: Mexicans come here wanting a better life. The ignorant scum that oozed across Virginia’s borders thinking they had Trump’s blessing just came to start trouble. Their faux mission — to “save” a statue of General Robert E. Lee.

On Friday night, they descended on Thomas Jefferson’s University of Virginia with flaming torches in lieu of burning a cross. But their big rally planned for Saturday never happened because the decent people of Charlottesville shut it down.

With pepper spray and fist fights, it got nasty. But when you fight with pigs, everybody gets dirty.

It took a deadly turn when a 20-year-old Nazi-loving coward from Ohio plowed his car into a group of residents, killing one woman and injuring 19 other people.

Virginia also senselessly lost two State Police whose helicopter crashed while they monitored the protests from above to help forces on the ground respond to the worst clashes.

In the aftermath, Trump read this speech, mollifying his base with a bored demeanor and tone that signaled he didn’t share its sentiments…

The KKK and neo-Nazi groups got what they wanted. Trump didn’t call them out by name, but implied that C’villers and even the police bore blame for how it went down.

The outrage from left and right couldn’t come fast enough, but it still took the White House two days to draft the speech Trump should have given in the first place. This time, he kept his eyes glued to the teleprompter to let his base know he was just mouthing someone else’s words, not speaking from the heart…

And what he says today, he may undo tomorrow, or in an hour, with a tweet or some crazy, fact-free statement to a reporter.

Trump said in his first try that he wants to study what happened to “see what we’re doing wrong as a country.”

Is he KIDDING? Someone, please show him the hours of rally footage where he’s been appealing to people’s bigotry all along.

Trump, you created this. You love this. You want adoring crowds saluting you with “Sieg Heil!” Admit it.

Charlottesville is only an hour away. Richmond’s turn may be next. “Americans for Richmond Monument Preservation” has applied for a permit to rally around the General Lee statue here on September 16. May the city say, “Enough’s enough,” and deny it.

Trump ran on shredding political correctness. For once, I agree with him. Let’s stop being so understanding and stomp out this ignorant, hate-filled, violent faction that aspires to live in Nazi America with Trump as their dictator.

Purveyors of chaos and destruction deserve no First Amendment rights. They need to be shut down — online, in person, wherever they skulk — or they’ll just keep on bullying and killing.

BONUS: Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe gave a speech on Saturday to show Trump what a leader sounds like…


Is Trump Headed for a “McCain” Mutiny?

July 28, 2017

By Karen

Another week of chaos, and Trump shows no signs of letting our heads stop spinning — from hiring “Guido the Mooch” Scaramucci, who vows to “fucking kill” all White House leakers because he loves the president SO MUCH — to blindsiding the military Trump adored five minutes ago by tweeting he’s going to rid it of transgender members.

It’s unfortunate that brain cancer finally brought John McCain to his senses, but whatever works, I say. He hurried back to Washington with stitches still on his face to tell his colleagues, “We are not the president’s subordinates. We are his equal.”

Good reminder, since they all hop on buses like kindergartners on a field trip every time Trump summons them to the White House to scold and bully them into submission.

But then McCain took it to a new level by actually voting with Democrats to sink the Republicans’ “skinny” attempt to subvert health care. Unlike Lindsey Graham, who loves talking trash about bills before flouncing back to his seat to vote to pass them.

And then I suddenly realized we’re watching that 1954 Humphrey Bogart film, The Caine Mutiny.

Bogart played Captain Queeg, the commander of a minesweeper called the USS Caine during World War II. (Picture Trump as Queeg and the U.S. as the Caine.)

Queeg’s crew (we citizens) quickly realize he’s an incompetent, paranoid bully. He refuses to admit his mistakes and lies to cover them up (pick one, the list is long).

He imagines other people committing heinous misdeeds against him — like stealing strawberries from the mess (voter fraud) — and conducts phony investigations to expose them.

When faced with making life-or-death decisions, he turns tail and runs, earning himself the nickname “Old Yellowstain” (“Old Orangestain” in our version).

Finally, when the Caine gets caught in a typhoon and is in danger of foundering, Queeg freezes in terror on the bridge. To save the vessel and crew, Van Johnson (John McCain) mutinies and relieves Queeg of command. The other officers (Congress) go along.

Finally, under questioning at the officers’ court martial trial (Russia or tax fraud investigations), Queeg loses it and everybody sees that he’s nuts. However, unlike Trump, Queeg realizes it and stops himself.

It’s just a shame that we’ll never see the slightest glimmer of such self-awareness in Trump’s eyes.


Trump’s Gaslight Strategy Doomed to Backfire

July 13, 2017

By Karen

Did you ever see that movie, Gaslight? Charles Boyer tries to drive Ingrid Bergman mad by moving and hiding things, telling her that all her perceptions are wrong, and accusing her of losing touch with reality until she’s reduced to a basket case.

Boyer’s despicable behavior is a recognized thing called “gaslighting.” Merriam-Webster defines it as…

“To attempt to make (someone) believe that he or she is going insane (as by subjecting that person to a series of experiences that have no rational explanation).”

Donald Trump has been trying to gaslight the whole United States.

In the latest attempt, the New York Times poked the administration’s smoldering tire fire until it sparked into Donald Trump Jr.’s email chain documenting his eagerness to hear the Russian government’s dirt on Hillary Clinton — with invitations to Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort to listen in.

We’ve lost count of all the shady meetings between Trumpers and Russians we now know about, but finally there’s rock-solid proof in black and white that the Trump campaign wanted Russia’s help.

I think Junior was more stupid than evil. He doesn’t consider Russians an enemy because they’ve supported his family for years. Quoting from a story in Time magazine…

“‘Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets. We see a lot of money pouring in from Russia,’ Trump’s son, Donald Jr., said at a real estate conference in 2008, according to a trade publication, eTurboNews.”

Trump Sr. praised Junior for his “transparency” in releasing his emails in true gaslight style, omitting Junior’s longstanding lies and denials about his Russian connections.

Now Trump calls the whole matter “fake news.”

Uh, when the evidence is written, and the guy who wrote and published it says it’s authentic, it’s called REAL news. And it doesn’t help Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort.

Trump probably doesn’t care if Manafort gets toasted; he quit the campaign and made millions from Russians. But Kushner faces serious jail time, and spoiled, baby-faced brats typically don’t thrive in the big house.

You know Trump never read the emails himself nor, if he had, grasped how damning they are. He mistakenly believed if Junior tossed them out there with a defiant, “Now what are you going to do about it?” they would sink into oblivion because Junior doesn’t work in government and he can play with whomever he likes.

But Junior’s role in dad’s campaign may make them something criminal. Lawyers will figure that out.

So, trying to gaslight every U.S. intelligence agency, Trump now claims that Putin really wanted Hillary to win because she’d weaken the military. He doesn’t try to make even a little bit of sense anymore.

Whenever it finally penetrates Trump’s skull that precious Jared is in serious doo-doo thanks to Junior, he’ll be turning up the gas full-blast and Junior may realize Dad has a favorite — and it isn’t him.

That may drive Junior straight into the arms of another father figure, Robert Mueller, which can only be a good thing.

When the truth comes out, this nightmare ends, and justice is served, imagine Charles Boyer as Trump in his last desperate moments and Ingrid Bergman as the American people who are fed up with his games…


Trump’s Strange Lack of Curiosity About Russia Explained

July 6, 2017

By Karen

Melania may have a hard time tucking Donald into bed tonight in Hamburg on the eve of what’s believed to be his first face-to-face with his idol, Vladmir Putin, at the G20 summit. It’s hard to know for sure if they’ve ever met before because Trump’s been lying for several years about their acquaintance.

By all reports, Putin’s done his homework and is well-armed with facts and intelligence. Trump goes in with the mostly blank slate he calls his “good brain.”

Trump has never asked about how Putin interferes in U.S. elections. I think it’s because Trump already knows. During the campaign, his flying monkeys verbally kept him informed on how they coordinated Russia’s efforts on Trump’s behalf.

The White House couldn’t get Trump up to speed on Putin because Trump’s puny attention span allowed only a series of tweet-length bullet points. He’s incapable of absorbing any more.

Putin also has an agenda, which likely includes getting back those two spying bases in the U.S. that Obama seized on his way out the door, and probably the lifting of financial sanctions.

Trump’s attitude seems to be, “Ask not what Russia can do for you, but what you can do for Russia,” because Trump requested a list of “deliverables” for Putin. Hey, why not? The man helped put Trump in the White House.

No one expects Trump to bring up Russia’s meddling as a bad thing. Rather, Trump may drop to his knees before Putin in gratitude and ask him how he likes his blow jobs.

Nah, I go too far. It wouldn’t be presidential, and it would take a crane to get Trump back on his feet. Maybe that’s why he brought Melania.

As for the rest of the summit, it remains to be seen how gauche and boorish Trump will be this time. At least the other leaders know to expect some scolding and shoving.

Angela Merkel has made it clear she has no use for the arrogant man-baby, and Emmanuel Macron has already played Trump’s childish alpha-male games.

When Trump’s BFF, Chinese President Xi Jinping, strolls in, wanna bet Trump goes all sweet and gooey like chocolate cake, instead of ordering China to bring North Korea to heel, like he’s been demanding in speeches to everyone else?

I don’t see how Trump can possibly survive this summit with his ass intact. After Putin chews him up and spits him out, the other 18 leaders can steer around his bloated orange carcass like roadkill. On too many fronts, Trump has not only abdicated leadership, but his right to express an opinion. CNN did a succinct run-down on the major conflicts Trump has created with the other 19 18 countries. (Correction: One of the G20 members is a representative of the EU.)

It’s sad that I actually want to see a president of the United States disrespected and demeaned in an international forum. But maybe being publicly bitch-slapped by other leaders will get his attention. Nothing will make him humble, but if the world stops listening to or believing him, it may minimize the damage Trump can inflict


Time to Rename GOP Health Bill #TrumpDontCare

June 28, 2017

By Karen

Because he doesn’t, never has. Donald Trump has no clue what’s in the Senate’s “Better Care Reconciliation Act.” Ditto the House’s “American Health Care Act.” He never read either bill because this is how he reads, according to Reuters

“Conversations with some officials who have briefed Trump and others who are aware of how he absorbs information portray a president with a short attention span.

He likes single-page memos and visual aids like maps, charts, graphs and photos.

National Security Council officials have strategically included Trump’s name in ‘as many paragraphs as we can because he keeps reading if he’s mentioned,’ according to one source, who relayed conversations he had with NSC officials.”

But that didn’t stop Trump from hosting a celebration in the Rose Garden after the House bill passed, although it faced certain doom in the Senate.

In naming their bill “Better Care,” I assume Republican senators meant they’re taking better care of millionaires like Trump because they’re reducing his taxes while sticking it to the rest of us by letting health care costs spiral beyond reach for the poor or disabled, children, and older people.

God forbid they should ever focus on the real problem — pharmaceutical companies, medical providers, and insurers charging whatever they want to maximize their profit on sickness and death. To address the root cause of this health care disaster would stop those sweet, sweet lobbyist bribes from flowing into lawmakers’ coffers.

The one thing Trump does know about the existing Affordable Care Act (or “Obamacare,” as the GOP likes to disparage it), is that insurers are pulling out of state health insurance exchanges. That’s a fact. But they’re not going bankrupt. They’re just not raking in as much profit as they’d like.

In Trump’s feeble brain, this alone represents “complete disaster” and “melting down,” while he ignores that the law contains provisions people will not give up without a fight, such as no lifetime caps on coverage and not being denied coverage or charged more for pre-existing conditions.

Read how the ACA actually compares to the two Republican bills.

Trump makes his ignorance apparent by never mentioning specifics. During the campaign, he promised “something terrific” that would cover everyone and cost a lot less — without one detail about how he’d do it.

Once in office, he whined that health care is “a lot more complicated” than anybody ever knew. Wrong. Anybody who followed the ACA struggle into existence knew it but TRUMP. Because he didn’t care. It didn’t affect him.

Amazingly, Republicans can’t muster the Senate votes to ram their bill through because a few of them apparently have consciences, so they’re delaying the vote until after the July 4 recess.

Yesterday, Trump ordered, as if they’re his personal serfs, all the Republican senators onto buses to the White House. Spouting nonsense and still showing no idea what he was asking for, Trump just urged them to pass the bill. Watch it here…

http://www.reuters.com/assets/iframe/yovideo?videoId=371976494

The bottom line is #TrumpDontCare about anybody’s health care. He’s exploiting the ignorance of his base on a hot-button issue to cut his own taxes. Then he’ll claim it as a YUGE legislative achievement. It will take some time before the rubes realize Trump betrayed them and they’re worse off than ever.

Democrats, (I’m looking at you, Nancy Pelosi), PLEASE listen to Elizabeth Warren and start pushing for Medicare for All, a single-payer system. It’s the only option left. Channeling premiums now shoveled at health insurers into one government-run system will eliminate most administrative waste. Those savings will pay for actual medical care. A single, strong government entity will have the power to crush the price-gouging of drug companies and medical providers. For-profit health insurance companies will be remembered only as a bad dream we shook off.

It’s a supreme irony that a single-payer system will actually make Trump’s promises of terrific health care for everyone at less cost come true. But I’ll take it anyway.

BONUS: I came across this look at Trump by Carlos Lozada wrote in 2015 after binge-reading eight of Trump’s books. The last line of the piece is particularly revealing about Trump in the White House.


Melania Moves to DC: Too Little, Too Late

June 15, 2017

By Karen

Melania Trump woke up recently and remembered she’s a U.S. citizen. She’s also an unwilling first lady now, but nonetheless it’s her duty to protect us from her husband if she can. Special Counsel Robert Mueller is closing in fast on Trump, and the orange man-baby is figuratively throwing furniture around the White House, trying to elude capture.

Maybe James Comey’s testimony about Trump’s self-destructive behavior behind closed doors made Melania realize it’s time to get in the game. Or maybe Ivanka’s failure to control Daddy with her insipid whining, or Jared’s looming legal peril for being a naïve brat who thinks he can swim with the sharks, convinced her.

Whatever the reason, on Sunday, June 11, Melania, son Barron, and Melania’s parents officially moved to Washington. Crossing the White House lawn, Melania even let Trump hold her hand for a few moments before pulling away and shifting her purse so he couldn’t. Watch it on MSN. It starts at about 1:00.

Perhaps that gesture was his early, and only, birthday present.

Within a day or so of Melania’s arrival, Trump did a complete 180 on his health care bill, whose cruelty he had celebrated in the Rose Garden. Now he calls it “mean.” Coincidence? I think not.

Of course, Trump lacks any grasp of that bill to give specifics on what should change. You can almost hear the Trumps’ conversation. This is probably all Melania had to say to change his mind…

“Donald, the people who voted for you, you know, the poor and ignorant ones. Health care is the only thing the government has done for them in many years. If you take it away now, they will say you are mean, and maybe they won’t vote for you again.”

But let’s pause to reflect on poor Barron. This kid’s siblings are all old enough to be his parents and his father could be his grandfather. And now he’s stuck in the White House all summer, probably cramped in one room, not a whole floor like he had in Trump Tower, with only the Secret Service for company. He has no opportunities to make friends his own age before he attends a new school in the fall.

I don’t know if Barron had any friends back in NYC. He reminds me of a stalk of white asparagus — frail, spindly, devoid of personality. I guess that’s what happens to a child when you raise it in solitude, without sunlight or exercise. Let’s just hope he never turns orange.

Back to Melania: Of all the Trumps, I think she has NOT relied on Fox News for intel. She’s been watching CNN and MSNBC to see how Donald’s being attacked so she can play defense.

She probably started packing to move after she watched Dan Coats, Mike Rogers, and Jeff Sessions play coy with the Senate Intelligence Committee and make things worse. But it was already too late. They brought Washington to its senses and Trump IS now being investigated for obstruction of justice.

Happy 71st Birthday, Mr. President!

This feels to me like Chris Christie’s Bridgegate, but with much higher stakes. Trump must agree with me, because his choice to replace Comey as FBI director is Christopher Wray, Christie’s personal attorney, who’s quite familiar with how these setups work.

Trump surrounded himself with established Russians tools Paul Manafort, Carter Page, and Mike Flynn because he knew he couldn’t beat Hillary without help — and Russia offered to help.

No other presidential campaign in history ever had so many unexplained interactions with Russians. Trump knew what his minions were doing because he’s a micromanager. Like Christie’s, they operated under orders not to say or write anything tying Trump to their activities.

But once they got caught, micromanager Trump swooped in to stop the investigation, and now he’s in the soup with them.

Obstruction of justice charges may segue into conflicts of interest, illegal business dealings, perjury, and even treason. The snowball is rolling down the hill now. Any Trump attempts to stop it will only bury him, Jared, and their cronies in a deeper avalanche.

Melania can’t save Trump now, and she probably knows it. But she’ll look worse if she doesn’t at least try to stand by her man.


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