Open Thread: When Someone Tells You What They Are…

165 Replies to “Open Thread: When Someone Tells You What They Are…”

  1. Flynn looks like a candidate for FNDS. (Fox News Delusion Syndrome). I wouldn’t put it past him and Trump to tell us, straight-faced, that they had to betray the country to save the country.

  2. @Morzer:

    I wouldn’t put it past him and Trump to tell us, straight-faced, that they had to betray the country to save the country.

    I would be very surprised if they said that. They don’t believe selling out to the Russians was betraying the country; it’s just sensible policy.

  3. @Morzer:

    A few days ago, Adam and others were saying that Flynn had some kind of connection to a 24-year-old Russian woman whose co-workers used to call her “Crazy McCokehead.”

    So don’t discount the possibility that, like so many men before him, Flynn let his little head make important decisions.

  4. @TenguPhule:

    I was just thinking that Trump is one of the few people who would acquire more credibility and charm by being played by Adam Sandler.

  5. From the Washington Post via Kevin Drum: “In addition to the requests to Coats and Rogers, senior White House officials sounded out top intelligence officials about the possibility of intervening directly with Comey to encourage the FBI to drop its probe of Michael Flynn.”

    If I remember correctly, this is exactly the cover-up plan that made the impeachment and conviction of Richard Nixon inevitable, thus forcing Goldwater and other Republicans to persuade him to resign.

  6. Forgive me if this has been answered before, is there a way to downgrade his his retirement as a Three Star general, officers technically are not retired or did that change? I hate to see the American Flag cover this Bastard’s coffin when the time comes.

  7. Ask Comey to drop the investigation, ask Nunes and Burr to directly call reporters to say there is no collusion, ask Coats and Rogers to say there is no investigation and that Trump is clean.
    That’s a lot of investment of time and effort for something that’s a hoax and made up by the Democrats.

  8. @Morzer:

    Trump … would acquire more credibility and charm by being played by Adam Sandler.

    Sick burn, as the kids are reported to have said some time ago.

  9. @Mr Stagger Lee:

    is there a way to downgrade his his retirement as a Three Star general, officers technically are not retired or did that change? I hate to see the American Flag cover this Bastard’s coffin when the time comes.

    Yes, he can be recalled to duty and prosecuted by the military justice system. Penalties up to and including rank and pension stripping as well as firing squad could be applied for an act of treason.

  10. Flynn’s lawyers better hope he IS on Putin’s payroll, because they’re gonna wind up with a dime on the dollar’s worth of work otherwise.

  11. I guess “escalating public frenzy” is newspeak for “accountability”

  12. Trump’s budget is supposed to drop tomorrow. Between Flynn taking the 5th, the news of Trump asking Coats and Rogers to be on his side and whatever we learn out of the UK we may not hear or see another headline out of Trump’s foreign trip.
    He will return to the US to fire staffers and hire outside counsel to defend him on the Russia investigation.

  13. So what’s the holdup on Trump pardoning Flynn? I figured by now he’d say “fuckit” and just try to end things that way.

  14. @Corner Stone:

    Between Flynn taking the 5th, the news of Trump asking Coats and Rogers to be on his side and whatever we learn out of the UK we may not hear or see another headline out of Trump’s foreign trip.

    Trump: Challenge accepted. Hold my chocolate cake.

  15. @CM: And this time, the Crook isn’t likely going to resign. He’s incapable of doing so

  16. @Keith P.: It might look bad, especially since they have Russians on tape yucking it up about Flynn being in their pocket. He’d have to pardon a possible traitor. He will of course, but it takes time.

  17. @Keith P.:

    So what’s the holdup on Trump pardoning Flynn?

    Pardon would mean Flynn would be forced to testify to Congress.

  18. @Corner Stone:

    That’s a lot of investment of time and effort for something that’s a hoax and made up by the Democrats.

    It’s precisely because it’s a hoax that he has to spend so much time fighting it. There’s a massive Democrat/media conspiracy to slander a Flynn (and indirectly trump), so he has to do whatever he can to stop it.

  19. @JPL:

    He will of course, but it takes time.

    Not the stupidest option.

    Trying to silence Flynn permanently, that would be the stupidest option.

  20. @Morzer:

    Trump would be well-advised not to accept any slices of cake from Pence when he gets back.

    Pence would be well advised not to be alone with Trump or his minions under any circumstances at this point.

    Three men can indeed keep a secret if two of them are dead.

  21. @Keith P.:

    So what’s the holdup on Trump pardoning Flynn? I figured by now he’d say “fuckit” and just try to end things that way.

    Fire Mueller, pardon Flynn. What else? Federalize the Nat’l Guard?

  22. @Baud: Ah, yes, can’t forget those pesky EMAILS. I’m sure glad we dodged that bullet. Hitlery would have started a war for sure.

    Now excuse me while I build my bomb shelter.
    God-Emperor Trump just tweeted the nuclear launch codes. Cowabunga!

  23. @TenguPhule: As much as Trump would like to think he’s the American Putin, he’s not. You would need a few more decades of eroding liberal democratic values to get to that point

  24. @TenguPhule:

    Pardon would mean Flynn would be forced to testify to Congress.

    Says who? And what if he perjured himself? Who is going to prove otherwise?

  25. I wonder whether we might get a blockbuster movie about the fall of a wealthy, self-pitying racist family out of this.. call it Gone With The Flynned, perhaps?

  26. @Corner Stone:

    Says who? And what if he perjured himself? Who is going to prove otherwise?

    Can’t invoke the 5th after being pardoned. Perjury would be subject to separate prosecution (which Trump could also pardon him for, but at that point I suspect he’d find it easier just to shut him up permanently).

    I suppose he’s trying to Ollie North or Karl Rove it, but I suspect he’s not going to get off so easily as those two did.

  27. White House officials are seeking to stop the federal government’s top ethics officer from getting details about waivers granted to lobbyists and other appointees working in the administration, intensifying a power struggle between President Trump and the ethics agency.

    Walter M. Shaub Jr., director of the Office of Government Ethics, sent a memo in April to the White House and federal agencies asking for information about such waivers.

    But in a May 17 letter, Mick Mulvaney, director of the Office of Management and Budget, questioned whether the Office of Government Ethics has legal jurisdiction to get information about waivers that have been granted. He said the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel may needed to be consulted.

    “I therefore request that you stay the data call until these questions are resolved,” Mulvaney wrote Shaub in a letter first reported by the New York Times.

    Shaub responded forcefully with a nine-page letter to Mulvaney Monday night, denying his request to back off.

    “The unusual nature of your letter highlights OGE’s responsibility to lead the executive branch ethics program with independence, free from political pressure,” he wrote. “Accordingly, OGE declines your request to suspend its ethics inquiry.”

    The letter, posted by OGE’s official Twitter account, was accompanied by voluminous documents attesting to the agency’s authority to collect information, examples of the executive branch complying with past requests and previous calls by lawmakers for OGE to disclose such data in a public format.

    Among the attachments: a memo by an OGE attorney describing a May 17 phone call with a White House lawyer described as “less collegial” than routine conversations with other ethics officials.

    Former OGE officials said the agency has clear authority to seek documentation under the 1978 Ethics in Government Act. Without such reports, they said, it is impossible to know how many appointees have been granted exemptions from ethics rules — and how much leeway they have under the waivers.

    “This is unprecedented interference with OGE,” said Don Fox, a former general counsel and acting director of the ethics office.

    “The Ethics and Government Act was part of a whole package of post-Watergate legislation that had a common theme of transparency,” he added. “If there is nothing to hide, why hide it?”

    -From Wapo this evening
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/power-struggle-intensifies-between-white-house-and-ethics-office/2017/05/22/fff898b8-3f0b-11e7-adba-394ee67a7582_story.html?tid=ss_tw&utm_term=.7be77cd00c1c

  28. @amk:

    with I did not say israel twitler, what secret?

    To be fair, he’s said a great deal about what he didn’t tell them rather then what he actually did tell them.

    So we don’t actually know what he told them other then it was very bad news for the USA and Israel.

  29. @Corner Stone:

    Says who? And what if he perjured himself? Who is going to prove otherwise?

    Once you’ve been pardoned, you can’t incriminate yourself for the crime you were pardoned for. That means you can’t invoke the right against self incrimination to avoid testifying. Of course if he perjures himself, that’s a new offense he can be charged with if somebody can find documentary evidence to prove the perjury.

  30. @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku 🗳 🌷:

    You would need a few more decades of eroding liberal democratic values to get to that point

    You seem to think that falling within the realm of possibility is actually a deterrent to Trump attempting to do anything he does.

  31. @Aleta: Well, I know what the next order of business will be for the GOP Congress to tackle: repeal of the Ethics in Government Act

    In the name of FREEDOM!!

  32. @TenguPhule: Trump has crossed so many lines, but the repubs ignore it. To them it doesn’t matter, because now is the time to reward their donors. Nothing else matters.

  33. California now has a budget estimate for their proposed single payer plan. It’s about $400B. The state gets or generates about $200B in funding from the feds/state/local now across various healthcare programs, and employers are paying about $100-$150B for coverage that the state would now be taking up. So, assuming the fed money keeps coming, and assuming the state can find a tax approach that would be able to recoup the $100-$150B. The state would need to find an additional $50B-$100B in funds (upwards of $3K per citizen).

    Now, this is pretty much an ‘everything’ plan by design. It includes vision, dental, mental health services, nursing care. There are no deductibles, copays, premiums. There’s almost no detail included in the bill – leaving implementation completely open to be worked out later in the process and once the Governor gets involved.

    What the state now gets to do is look at that cost, look at what they are looking to offer, argue for places to reduce overhead, decide if everything should be included, how the state could contain costs more, and so on. My guess is that this will go to the Assembly without a lot of change (already passed the Senate) and the contours will begin to take shape now that they know the size of the challenge. I’m not sure how the cost estimate handles things like negotiating drug prices, etc. so it remains to be seen if that’s thorough or there’s room to work.

  34. I’m fuzzy on the particulars, but I pretty clearly remember the between the lines reading of some of the pre-inauguration cautionary comments from Flynn’s ex-colleagues being “This guy’s a loose cannon with a massive drinking problem.”

  35. @Baud: I remember that. I’m sure they’ll try again. Always be vigilant. The goons are always trying to take over

  36. @Mnemosyne:

    As I said the other night, it sounded like a honey trap that even Archer would have seen coming from a mile away.

    Even Archer would fall for it if her cleavage was big enough.

  37. @Roger Moore: Perhaps the Breitbart/National Enquirer will trot out that Flynn was actually a deep undercover operative working for Obama and Hillary, fired in disgraced by President Obama,offer his services to the Trump campaign.
    Shoot where is Alex Jones? Get me rewrite!

  38. @TenguPhule: I’m not sure if El Presidente is even that dumb. If he actually tried to get somebody offed and he were found out…

    That would be it. Not even the GOP could ignore that. Any one of them could be next

  39. About the budget: the NYT is reporting as follows:

    President Trump plans to unveil on Tuesday a $4.1 trillion budget for 2018 that would cut deeply into programs for the poor, from health care and food stamps to student loans and disability payments, laying out an austere vision for reordering the nation’s priorities. The document, grandly titled “A New Foundation for American Greatness,” … calls for an increase in military spending of 10 percent, spending more than $2.6 billion for border security — including $1.6 billion to begin work on a wall on the border with Mexico — as well as huge tax reductions and an improbable promise of 3 percent economic growth.

    The wildly optimistic projections balance Mr. Trump’s budget, at least on paper, even though the proposal makes no changes to Social Security’s retirement program or Medicare, the two largest drivers of the nation’s debt. To compensate, the package contains deep cuts in entitlement programs that would hit hardest many of the economically strained voters whose backing propelled the president into office. Over the next decade, it calls for slashing more than $800 billion from Medicaid, the federal health program for the poor, while slicing $192 billion from nutritional assistance and $272 billion over all from welfare programs. And domestic programs outside of military and homeland security whose budgets are determined annually by Congress would also take a hit, their funding falling by $57 billion, or 10.6 percent.

    It would also cut by more than $72 billion the disability benefits upon which millions of Americans rely. Student loan programs that subsidize college educations for the poor and those who take jobs in government or nonprofit organizations would be eliminated.

    Fuck these rich mean-spirited motherfuckers. No way it gets through.

  40. @Mr Stagger Lee: he’s subject to the UCMJ and he’s violated the military ban of engaging with foreign governments for money…which he failed to disclose (lied about)…so yeah, he could be court martialed, stripped of his rank and sent to Leavenworth for many years…effectively stripping him of his retirement.

  41. These are senior Republicans being described (with their approval, it’s a safe bet) as recoiling from Trump efforts to obstruct justice. They are adding their names to witness lists in advance. That’s not normal behavior, as it adds up to six-figure legal bills if you’re both lucky and innocent, so the skids may be greased here for fair.

  42. I would like to see a bunch of Code Pinkers or Resistance folks follow him around some public area chanting “Lock Him Up! Lock Him Up!” Kind of like the little group who found Pat McGrory during Inauguration and followed him chanting “Shame! Shame! Shame!”

  43. @TenguPhule:

    Well, sure, but Archer would at least be aware that it was a honey trap going in, even if he assumed that he would be able to weasel his way out of it. It sounds like Flynn thought a 24-year-old Russian party girl just happened to think he was totally hawt, oh, and I have this totally secret information that I just happen to want to share with you, my new boyfriend, too!

    And when you’re even dumber than a pretty dumb cartoon spy …

  44. @Mnemosyne:

    And when you’re even dumber than a pretty dumb cartoon spy

    Yes, but things always work out for the dumb cartoon spy. How was Flynn supposed to know that it doesn’t work like that in real life? All of his other roles in life were defined by cartoons and look where that got him…..Oh.

  45. @Baud: It’s a massive challenge. There will be a lot of losers, and a lot of winners. People will lose their jobs, other jobs will be created. Even if it’s absolutely the right thing to do, it’ll be very painful.

  46. @Baud:

    Shut up. It could happen.

    That North Korean chick didn’t really think you were a Superman, Baud.

  47. @Lizzy L:

    It would also cut by more than $72 billion the disability benefits upon which millions of Americans rely. Student loan programs that subsidize college educations for the poor and those who take jobs in government or nonprofit organizations would be eliminated

    That includes veterans right? Man, fuck Trump and the Grand Oligarchy Party. That whole budget is bullshit. My grandfather who has Alzheimer’s relies on Medicaid to help pay for his stay in a nursing facility. He won’t survive outside that place.

    One more reason to wish for Trump’s demise

  48. @amk: That sound you hear is the corpse of the Onion rising from its grave to kill everyone because this world no longer makes any sense.

  49. As they say, the WH Budget is mainly aspirational. As such, it should be hung around the neck of every GOP son of a bitch in Congress. It is an absolutely insane document, from what I have learned of it so far.

  50. @Mr Stagger Lee:

    is there a way to downgrade his his retirement as a Three Star general, officers technically are not retired or did that change?

    The Army can recall him to active duty and court martial him. That’s what they did with Petraeus; they can reduce him in rank and thus shave his pension.
    Now, whether this can or will happen with a general as Secretary of Defense, and no Army secretary in place, I haven’t the faintest idea. Maybe Adam does.

  51. @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku 🗳 🌷: My understanding is that the motherfuckers intend to cut funds for veterans’ programs as well.

    The House Republicans are going to shit their pants, having to respond to this. The Ryan wing will love it, but the rest of the Rs — not so much.

  52. @TenguPhule: I used to live right across the street for the Onion’s HQ (we’ve both moved). Close enough that I would have heard the heads exploding and editors screaming, “No, I know your story is bizarre as fuck, but look what the asshole just did!”

  53. @Keith P.:

    So what’s the holdup on Trump pardoning Flynn?

    Anybody who’s pardoned can be forced to testify, because s/he no longer needs fifth amendment protections. I’m sure Tangerine Tumor’s lawyers know that, and have tried to explain it.

  54. Just got back from dinner with a friend and her husband who is a lifelong Republican, who this year voted third party. He was ranting about how awful Trump is. I took comfort from knowing my friend is at least not married to a trumper.

  55. @Lizzy L: Veterans groups I imagine will cry foul over that. I’d love to know what GOP vets/active duty personnel will think of this shit show. Support the troops my ass!

  56. @Omnes Omnibus:

    I used to live right across the street for the Onion’s HQ (we’ve both moved). Close enough that I would have heard the heads exploding and editors screaming, “No, I know your story is bizarre as fuck, but look what the asshole just did!”

    Was this during Dubya? Can you even imagine living next door to or across the street from them now?

  57. From Bloomberg, a follow-up on the budget proposal:

    Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell has already said he expects the Republican-led Congress to largely ignore the proposal, saying in an interview last week with Bloomberg News that early versions reflected priorities that “aren’t necessarily ours.”

  58. @Lizzy L:

    The Ryan wing will love it, but the rest of the Rs — not so much.

    I’m guessing you’re either new to this country, or you’ve been in a coma for about 12 years.

  59. God, three straight hours on the UK explosion? We don’t know anything more now than we did 4 hours ago.

  60. @🌷 Martin:

    (upwards of $3K per citizen)

    True story: I am currently paying about $4,800 per year for good employer insurance for myself and my husband, so your estimate would actually save us a little money.

    ETA: Hang on, bad with math. $6K for both of us under this plan, not $3K. Still doesn’t seem like a terrible deal for another $1,200 a year over what we’re currently paying.

  61. @Morzer:

    So, you’re saying that The Baud Organization is available for fetish nights AND cosplay parties?

    I have no idea what any of that means after “available.”

  62. @lamh36:

    A little bit of light tonight… Barack and Michelle on vacation in Italy, looking fly and happy!

    He might want to really investigate a Kenyan or Indonesian citizenship soon. Who wants to be a citizen of a tinpot dickhead’s failed state!

  63. @Lizzy L:

    Do you really think ANY Rethugs — Ryan-crew or otherwise — give a rat’s ass about anything other than tax cuts for their wealthy donors?

  64. @TenguPhule: I suspect the relevant precedent is the Iran-Contra affair, wherein GHWB pardoned his co-conspirators (both those indicted/convicted, and those yet-to-be-indicted), effectively ensuring that he himself could never be brought to account for his crimes. The special prosecutor, Lawrence Walsh, had some choice words, as I remember, for the farce.

  65. @Jacel:

    One Baud to rule them all, one Bawd to find them,
    One Baud to bring them all and in the party bind them,
    In the land of Bawdor, where the shadows lie.

  66. @Mnemosyne: Well, the $3K is simply the gap between what is currently funded and what still needs to be funded. So assuming the state recovers your $4800, they would need to fill in another $3K for you, and another $3K for your husband. Is your employer putting anything in?

    The $400B works out to about $10K per citizen. Actually a bit less than that because the plan will also cover undocumented. Coincidentally, that’s about the current costs of care per capita now in the US, so I’m guessing there are no savings in the estimate due to lower administrative costs, negotiating pricing on behalf of 40 million people, capping costs on various things, and so on. Over the long haul, that should be able to be brought down to $5K per person, though. That’s still double what you are paying out of pocket, but this also sounds like the estimate assumes the costs that are currently being paid out of your payroll taxes, so maybe not not terribly far off.

  67. I have been grimly amused to observe Chris Christie slithering out of the shadows to note that he warned Trump about Flynn:

    http://talkingpointsmemo.com/l.....bout-flynn

    Gov. Chris Christie (R-NJ) said Monday that he repeatedly warned President Donald Trump against hiring former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.

    “I didn’t think that he was someone who would bring benefit to the President or to the administration,” Christie said at a news conference, as quoted by the Washington Post. “I made that very clear to candidate Trump, and I made it very clear to President-elect Trump.”

    Christie said he was “not going to get into specifics” regarding his misgivings about Flynn.

    “Some of it involves classified information that I’m just not at liberty to discuss,” he said. “I was not informed in any way about him or anyone else being under investigation.”

    Christie said he and Flynn “didn’t see eye-to-eye” and that the retired lieutenant general was not his “cup of tea.”

    “If I were president-elect of the United States, I wouldn’t let General Flynn in the White House, let alone give him a job,” Christie said.

    Big Chicken goes to war!

  68. @lamh36:

    A little bit of light tonight… Barack and Michelle on vacation in Italy, looking fly and happy!

    On vacation, AGAIN?!? While Trump is hard at work?!?!?!?

  69. @Roger Moore:

    Once you’ve been pardoned, you can’t incriminate yourself for the crime you were pardoned for. That means you can’t invoke the right against self incrimination to avoid testifying. Of course if he perjures himself, that’s a new offense he can be charged with if somebody can find documentary evidence to prove the perjury.

    It’s pardons and perjury, all the way down!

  70. “If I were president-elect of the United States, I wouldn’t let General Flynn in the White House, let alone give him a job,” Christie said.

    Throwing his hat in the ring for 2020, huh? He should beat Pence, if he’s still president by then. Unless America has had its fill of thin-skinned bullies by then

  71. @Morzer:

    You know not the words “nights” and “parties”?

    I believe I wrote “any of that,” not “any of those words.”

  72. @joncoopertweets

    Sources: WH staffers “audibly gasped” when news broke of today’s WaPo story that Trump asked intel officials to deny #TrumpRussia collusion.

  73. @Jeffro:

    While Trump is hard at work?!?!?!?

    If by “hard at work” you mean either “grifting” or “being exhausted,” of course.

  74. @amk: Not that they would, but one might hope that in response the entire WH press corps would skip Spicey’s press conferences until those credentials are revoked. And spend every single broadcast from now until they are revoked with an in-depth look educating the American public what InfoWars is really all about.

    Not even all the Trumpistas are on board with that kind of crazy.

  75. @SFAW: Of course! “trump” and “work” are essentially antonyms…in fact, “to trump” should mean basically the same thing as slacking off while lying about it.

  76. @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku 🗳 🌷:

    Christie is extremely unpopular in New Jersey, never mind nationally. He gambled on kissing Trump’s ass and lost out because of JarJar’s Vengeance. This is just his way of jumping up and down and yelling “Notice me!”

  77. @SFAW:

    Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell has already said he expects the Republican-led Congress to largely ignore the proposal, saying in an interview last week with Bloomberg News that early versions reflected priorities that “aren’t necessarily ours.”

    Yes. They all care, more than anything, about keeping their seats. They are starting to get scared. They thought this year was going to be a cakewalk — it isn’t. Nothing is certain, but Ossoff is 7 points up on Handel in Georgia. They’ve been registering new voters like crazy. Don’t think the Rs in neighboring districts aren’t paying attention.

  78. @Morzer:

    Sounds like we need a special counsel to determine what SFAW knew and when SFAW knew it.

    Good luck with that. I plan to use the “Sgt. Schultz Defense,” plus I plan to drink a plead the Fifth.

  79. @Morzer:

    This is just [Christie’s] way of jumping up and down and yelling “Notice me!”

    Note: unintentional or not, this is also significant confirmation that Flynn’s issues were widely known within the Trump campaign at some date earlier than “30 seconds before Flynn was fired by Trump”.

    Hey Chris, would you mind testifying against Flynn, and maybe shed some light into what Trump and Pence knew, and when they knew it?

  80. @🐾BillinGlendaleCA:

    It’s a well known fact here that Baud wears what he was born with.

    Um … I was trying to be delicate.

    Taking tact lessons from Shitgibbon, are we? As long as you don’t keep telling us about your massive election, I guess it’s OK.

  81. @Jeffro: wouldn’t work…they’d replace regulars with Russian and other foreign media…Drumpf has already set that precident.

  82. @Morzer:

    Before the Cuck crows, McConnell and Ryan will deny ever having known Trump three times.

    Quoted for hilarity.

  83. @amk:

    President’s statement to PM Netanyahu that he didn’t mention Israel in his meeting with the Russians compounds one blunder with yet another. https://t.co/y5jdokwQ9o— Adam Schiff (@RepAdamSchiff) May 23, 2017

    guess we found our leaker.

    If the President does it it’s not illegal a leak. RPD: Random Presidential Declassification, alternatively Rapid P D. Informally, Trumpissification.

    Tangental: Trump’s Razor (google, + TPM)

  84. @Morzer:

    Christie goes wobbly on flailing Trump.

    C’mon, you should know that Christie’s ED and Trump’s unappealing sexual overtures are protected health information under HIPAA.

  85. @Morzer: I don’t know. Christie might be just delusional enough to do it. He is in the GOP after all

  86. @🐾BillinGlendaleCA:

    I’d rather hear about his massive election than his massive erection.

    Some jokes are/were better left implied, not stated.

    For your next act, I suppose you’re going to tell us you didn’t mention Israel to Lavrov and Kissayak.

    @magurakurin:

    that’s what Melania said.

    She’s just tired of being told that THIS (holds thumb and forefinger one centimeter apart) is “six inches. Bigly.”

  87. @Jacel: Is it? I thought I had heard Cheeto will be in Germany when PBO is there to speak at a conference with Merkel.

    Ya just knos Cheeto will HATE seeing the images of PBO and Merkel, and the high esteem they have for one another…lol.

    I’ll be honest and say I haven’t really been following anything other than report from the trip and I barely do that

  88. @magurakurin: Well, everyone who wants to make sure this works properly is standing in the way of single payer. There’s a reason why changes like this typically only take place after some huge calamity. A lot of people will lose under single payer, not the least of which being the million or so people that work in health insurance and directly related fields. Some will still have jobs as claims will still need to be processed, but it’s going to be increasingly automated as it’ll be heavily standardized, so those will be transitional at best.

    Just because something is morally right doesn’t mean it isn’t incredibly painful to go through, and single payer will be incredibly painful to implement. Even California democrats who have twice before voted for this appreciate the challenge. A few specifics:

    1) The GOP may decide that a successful single payer plan in California would present a realistic threat to market coverage in the rest of the country and force the nation into single payer. As such they would sabotage federal funding that CA would need pay for the program. One is already being proposed – abortion is a constitutional right in CA and must be covered by insurers. A federal ban on using federal dollars for abortion would make it impossible for federal dollars to be used.
    2) There are all manner of opportunity costs to CA residents and businesses. Would CA become a haven for the uninsurable, disabled, and so on throwing the cost pool out of whack? Would businesses that currently don’t provide any insurance and who would almost certainly face a large payroll tax hike with no ability shift dollars from their insurance cost (because they have none) to cover it leave the state? How many jobs might that affect?
    3) How would the program cover out-of-state individuals. Would they still have the capacity to process private insurance claims? Would CA simply cover visitors? How much medical tourism would this result in?

    California is such a large and influential state that these aren’t just state level matters, but national ones. What happens to national health insurers when the largest and richest (and one of the youngest and healthiest) state drops them all? What happens if California starts negotiating drug and equipment prices separate from the rest of the nation? (Hint – y’all will end up subsidizing CA). How do national employers handle this dichotomy – when workers in one state have much better insurance than workers in the other 49? Looking at you WalMart. And so on. Nothing about this is easy.

  89. @SFAW: That was part of the earliest Nick at Nite lineup I remember.

    Lucy, Bewitched, Jeannie, Mary Tyler Moore, Dragnet, and Get Smart were my pre-teen television diet.

  90. As we mourn Manchester, remember: for a moment of ignorant boasting, the president betrayed one of the West’s best sources inside ISIS.— David Frum (@davidfrum) May 23, 2017

  91. Yes, BriWi. It is indeed the middle of the night over there and y’all running the same clips in perpetuity is, in fact, annoying. Let’s wrap this until they search this alleged bad guy’s location. Nothing is going to change until then.

  92. @lamh36:

    Once MSNBC pushed Brian Williams to earlier, I was out…can’t stand Brian Williams…ugh

    And yet, I believe we have him to (50%) thank for Allison Williams…conflicted about this, I am…

  93. @Omnes Omnibus: True, but I’ll be curious to see how many people in his line of work (“work”) are willing to make the same point. Attacks in Europe were a result of “feckless” US foreign policy from 2009-2016, per John MccCain and his sidekick

    ETA: dear god, BriWi is giving a lecture on UK geography– and the NBC London correspondent babbling about the people of the Manchester region (Mancunains?) being “hard working” and “the salt of the Earth”. “Good, wholesome families…” FFS.

  94. This bombing is obviously the result of Trump refusing to say “radical islamic terrorism”.

  95. @Omnes Omnibus: Turned it off, went to read this instead. I cannot believe this guy is Mary Landrieu’s brother

    TRANSCRIPT OF NEW ORLEANS MAYOR LANDRIEU’S ADDRESS ON CONFEDERATE MONUMENTS
    …So, let’s start with the facts.
    The historic record is clear: the Robert E. Lee, Jefferson Davis, and P.G.T. Beauregard statues were not erected just to honor these men, but as part of the movement which became known as The Cult of the Lost Cause. This ‘cult’ had one goal — through monuments and through other means — to rewrite history to hide the truth, which is that the Confederacy was on the wrong side of humanity.
    First erected over 166 years after the founding of our city and 19 years after the end of the Civil War, the monuments that we took down were meant to rebrand the history of our city and the ideals of a defeated Confederacy.
    It is self-evident that these men did not fight for the United States of America, They fought against it. They may have been warriors, but in this cause they were not patriots.
    These statues are not just stone and metal. They are not just innocent remembrances of a benign history. These monuments purposefully celebrate a fictional, sanitized Confederacy; ignoring the death, ignoring the enslavement, and the terror that it actually stood for…

  96. @Roger Moore:

    @Corner Stone:

    Says who? And what if he perjured himself? Who is going to prove otherwise?

    Once you’ve been pardoned, you can’t incriminate yourself for the crime you were pardoned for. That means you can’t invoke the right against self incrimination to avoid testifying. Of course if he perjures himself, that’s a new offense he can be charged with if somebody can find documentary evidence to prove the perjury.

    And the best part is that he’d also have no right to refuse to provide the documents the committee wants, so any perjury about things covered in the documents would be ridiculously easy to prove.

  97. @Jim, Foolish Literalist: I can…but then again, I am a born and raised New Orleanian…the Landrieus have been a part of NOLA politics longer than I’ve been alive now.

    They may be disliked statewide, but folks here like them. Mitch is def one of the most well liked of the Landrieu fam, but Mary is also…did she change once she won statewide, sure, maybe, but locally, she was def respected, at least by the biggest non-gentrified population of NOLA electorate…

  98. @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    I cannot believe this guy is Mary Landrieu’s brother

    For those of us who don’t know LA (and NOLA) politics, could you enlighten? Seriously, I read his speech, and was wowed. I mean, talk about tellin’ it straight. I don’t remember Mary Landrieu much. I thought she was a typical Red State Dem (that is, pretty conservative, but still, better than an R in that position). Anyway, if you feel like it, I’d sure like to read it!

  99. @lamh36: I thought of you, but I’m never sure of the bios that go with the nyms. I’ll be really curious to see how this plays out for him in the next few days. It’s a history lesson the whole country needs. Especially that cement-headed fuck in MS

    @lamh36: I’ll defer to lamh36 ‘s opinion, but Mary never stood out for courage in the Bush years, or Obama’s. I do remember one time an R Senator made some snide allusions to Dems being unpatriotic, and she got up and ripped him a new one one the Senate floor.

  100. @Jim, Foolish Literalist: He’ll be fine…locally. Statewide he never really got past Lt Governor…so, I don’t suspect he’ll be taking that route again.

    I can’t recall how long, but there is a term limit, and I think Landrieu has served as mayor for almost 8 years…I believe he’s at 1 1/2 of his 2 terms…and I think, but dont’ quote me, but he limtied to 2 terms.

    I’m not too sure what his plans are after? Maybe statewide office again? Maybe Congress, I don’t see him going for Senate?

    But again, locally, he’ll be fine…so he could challenge for Congressional districts and could do well…IMHO

  101. Just lock him up and be done with it. As the Buffoon Donald said, “If you have to take the 5th you have something to hide”. As the Buffoon and General Flynn said, “If you have to ask for immunity you are guilty of something”.
    Just lock him up and throw away the key. Make America Great Again!

  102. @Morzer: Something else:

    Yes, Frum & Rubin have a lot to answer for. But they’ve started to utter reality-based statements. (Assuming we’re not all rubble) Will they continue once this emergency passes, and we go back to politics as usual? Will they become (remain) opponents, and not revert to being enemies? Only time will tell. But right -now-, they’re on the same side. Americans died to get Stalin the materiel to fight. That wasn’t a bad decision on Roosevelt’s part. For now, I’m thankful they’re on the right side. This time.

    ETA: And yeah, as Morzer says, there some things they can say, and get a hearing, that we on the left cannot. For that also, we should be thankful. Which doesn’t mean “unwary, once this is over”.

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