8/13/18 “Turn that plane around and bring those people back to the United States. It’s outrageous.”
How’s it going, warriors? Hanging in there amid the disheartening global-warming news of fires and floods and heat waves? I’m starting off this week with a spectrum of news of our progress that doesn’t fit into a category.
California, which has the power to overrule federal fuel-efficiency requirements under the Clean Air Act, refuted the White House’s stance on lowering fuel-efficiency regulations with a flurry of facts on pollution, and announced plans to adhere to current federal standards with more stringent fuel emissions restrictions, rather than allow state manufacturers to lower them to Donald’s proposed levels.
In a nearly unprecedented move, Apple removed all Infowars’ conspiracy theorists Alex Jones’s podcasts, joining Spotify, Facebook, Google, and YouTube.
Tribune Broadcasting has withdrawn from the proposed merger with Sinclair, a broadcast company so conservative they make FOX look like flaming socialists, after the FCC (inexplicably, under pro-Trump, anti-net neutrality Ajit Pai) expressed reservations about the merger, which would have given the joined company a presence in 72 percent of markets—well over the FCC ceiling of 32. Tribune plans to sue for breach of contract.
Donny-endorsed Kris Kobach’s lead over Governor Jeff Colyer in Kansas was sliced from a narrow 191 to a whisper-thin 91 when election officials discovered an error in transmitting votes from one county. Kobach, the Kansas secretary of state, finally recused himself from overseeing the count when Colyer demanded he stop advising county election officials.
Ohio’s razor-close House race got shaved even closer when more than 500 votes from one county were “found” and tallied. Democrat Danny O’Connor trails Republican Troy Balderson by a scant 1564 votes, and votes are still being counted (despite Balderson and the very stable genius prematurely declaring victory).
Unflaggingly obsequious Trump toady Devin Nunes was recorded possibly violating his oath of office to hold the executive branch to account, instead telling a group of GOP donors that they were the last line of defense to “protect” little Don in the Russia investigation.
The army has (temporarily) suspended discharges of foreign-born recruits who enlisted through DACA.
Let’s not lend much credence to anything publicity-seeking missile Omarosa Manigault Newman has to say—however,documentation does prove her claim that she was offered hush money to be silent about her time working with the commander of cheese. That’s another data point in a long line of hush-money payments to silence the hemorrhaging of info about things little Don doesn’t want the world to know about—things are beginning to come to light.
The immigration lawyer for Melania Trump’s parents, who just became citizens as beneficiaries of the “chain migration” Donald is trying to end for others, called out Donald’s hostility to the policy as “unconscionable.”
As Robert Mueller expands his investigation, per his DoJ mandate, to explore other legal wrongdoings he may discover, I’m renaming the Russia section to encompass it all.
Rick Gates, Mueller’s eagerly cooperative witness, has rolled like a burrito against Paul Manafort, delineating the more than 15 foreign bank accounts Manafort hid from the IRS, that he lied for years at Manafort’s behest, and the many ways in which Manafort and Gates—Donald’s chief and secondary campaign advisers—broke the law.
Andrew Miller, a longtime Roger Stone associate, is being held in contempt of court for refusing to testify despite being subpoenaed.
Republicans Against the Law (slash “Draining the Swamp”—there’s so much overlap lately)
Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross is at the center of a $120 million lawsuit alleging that Ross stole from his business partner.
A Richmond, VA, GOP house rep falsified a petition for the candidacy of an independent to draw votes away from the Democratic candidate using names of deceased and relocated voters.
Federal prosecutors in NYC are investigating former Donny attorney (and current stool pigeon) Michael Cohen for tax fraud. Who could have foreseen this? (Side note: Won’t it be fun if Dems take the House and/or Senate this fall and have the power to subpoena the commander of cheese’s tax returns?)
Republican Rep Christopher Collins of New York —Donald’s first congressional endorser—has been charged with insider trading. Collins intended to stay on the ballot in November nonetheless—and why not? In Donny’s GOP, criminality is no reason not to run for office—but twenty-four hours later Collins finally “suspended” his campaign.
A federal judge ordered a plane carrying two asylum seekers turned around on the ground and returned to the U.S. after learning Jeff Sessions had the mother-daughter pair deported while their appeal was in process. The judge called the precipitous deportation “outrageous” and called Sessions on the carpet, threating to hold him in contempt.
A federal appeals court ordered Donny’s administration to revoke its approval for a pesticide shown to damage the brains of children in even small amounts, stating that Scott Pruitt’s EPA had endangered public health by keeping it on the market.
A federal judge has ruled that the border patrol agent who shot a Mexican teenager across the border is not immune from facing charges for violating the child’s Constitutional right against excessive force by law enforcement.
Social and Civil Rights Advances
Congress is poised to get its first Muslim woman lawmaker—a welcome move toward representing all of America.
Missouri voters rejected a right-to-work law on the ballot by a wide margin, in a victory for unions.
A new record is being set for most female nominees for governor in a single year, and transgender candidates are running in unprecedented numbers for office this year.
Your Feel-good Stories of the Week
The much vaunted white-supremacist Unite the Right rally in DC Sunday ended with a fizzle when about two dozen people showed up to march—a bit below the 400 the organizers expected. Meanwhile, thousands of antiracist protesters showed up to line the streets and drown out the racist chants and speeches of the demonstrators. BOOM, bitches. That’s how we handle hate.
Don Jr. posted a hilariously blatantly Photoshopped image that presented false popularity ratings for his daddy—exaggerating them by 10 percent. The world noticed.
Enjoy Donald’s sparkling words of praise for Jeff Bezos and the Washington Post…five years ago.
Since then Donny has ramped up his attacks on the media, this past weekend tweeting, “The Fake News hates me saying that they are the Enemy of the People only because they know it’s TRUE. I am providing a great service by explaining this to the American People. They purposely cause great division & distrust. They can also cause War! They are very dangerous & sick!” Nearly every autocrat and tyrant in history has begun their regime by attacking and undermining those who can expose their efforts and corruption. On August 16 more than 70 newspapers across the country will publish varying op-eds from their opinion writers speaking out against this alarming attack on the First Amendment rights and the democratic protections created by a free press.
We lose only if we are silent in the face of attacks on democracy, warriors. Hang in there! So much progress has been made and continues to be, and so many democratic failsafes are working as the Founders intended; but that news can get lost amid the flashier breaches, outrages, and propaganda of the mentally deranged dotard and his GOP apologists. Wars are won by the unflagging efforts of those fighting for what’s right—our relentless persistence is what will protect our democracy. Those attacking it know that, and that’s one reason they keep up a steady barrage of offenses, hoping it will weary the country enough to allow them to remake it in their oligarchic ideal. Don’t let them succeed in wearing you down. Take care of yourselves, take mental-health breaks, but stay in the fight.