The Trump Presidency Thread

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by LawBeefaroni » Mon Mar 20, 2017 11:19 am

Rip wrote:
tgb wrote:
LordMortis wrote:I have to say, the dollar signs were clever.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/ant ... 9d29dcb8c6

Enlarge Image
Apparently the Jews have taken a break from vandalizing cemeteries in order to send death threats to the artist.
If they did I could understand. Diminishing just what a monster Hitler was by comparing Trump to him is more unsettling than anything Trump has actually done. I don't think people realize that they are teaching young people not so much how bad Trump is as making Hitler seem like an everyday bad guy.

In reality Trump, Putin, Castro, Kim Jong-Un, and all the Iranian mullahs combined couldn't hold a candle to the evil of Hitler. But you wouldn't know it by the way everything is godwinized these days.
People who lived through Hitler and the aftermath of Nazi Germany are some of those making comparisons. They're not diminishing Hitler. They are scared of Trump.
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by malchior » Mon Mar 20, 2017 11:34 am

Well as everyone knows they were totally planning the final solution 2 months into his chancellorship. So any comparison is therefore invalid.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by hepcat » Mon Mar 20, 2017 2:44 pm

Spicer responds to Comey's testimony that there was no evidence to back up Trump's lie about being wiretapped:
“Following this testimony, it’s clear nothing has changed,” administration spokesman Sean Spicer told reporters at his daily press briefing.
Did anyone expect him to back down?
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by YellowKing » Mon Mar 20, 2017 3:20 pm

Every time I see a "HILLARY LIED" bumper sticker I want to punch something.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by Zaxxon » Mon Mar 20, 2017 3:28 pm

On NPR while driving at lunch I heard that during today's hearings, the @POTUS Twitter account tweeted that:
"The NSA and FBI tell Congress that Russia did not influence electoral process."

...and this tweet was then read aloud during the still-in-progress hearings and debunked.

What an embarrassment we've become, and in real time now, no less.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by PLW » Mon Mar 20, 2017 3:33 pm

You can watch the whole thing. It's only four hours long, and it is actually pretty interesting.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by hepcat » Mon Mar 20, 2017 3:36 pm

Jeebus, what a mess.

I wonder how long it will be before he simply resigns? He doesn't strike me as the type to stick around if he's not surrounded by Yes men/women. He's getting a ton of push back from all sides at this point. I wouldn't be surprised if he simply screws off back to Mar-a-Lago or New York, never to return.
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by Kraken » Mon Mar 20, 2017 3:42 pm

He won't quit until he faces the threat of being fired. There is way too much money to be made in the meantime.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by Paingod » Mon Mar 20, 2017 3:47 pm

Kraken wrote:He won't quit until he faces the threat of being fired. There is way too much money to be made in the meantime.
I don't believe he'd ever quit. He'd force them to drag him out in cuffs, screaming the whole time that it was all Fake News, horrible lies, SAD!
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by El Guapo » Mon Mar 20, 2017 3:47 pm

hepcat wrote:Jeebus, what a mess.

I wonder how long it will be before he simply resigns? He doesn't strike me as the type to stick around if he's not surrounded by Yes men/women. He's getting a ton of push back from all sides at this point. I wouldn't be surprised if he simply screws off back to Mar-a-Lago or New York, never to return.
He's not really getting much substantive push back. Individual Republican officials will condemn him in statements here and there when they feel like they need to, but McConnell and Ryan are pretty firmly protecting him from anything that might impose real consequences. And the GOP is almost certainly going to hold all of Congress until at least 2020, given gerrymandering in the House and the Senate map.

Trump's going to serve at least one full term, unless there's tape of him making a deal with Putin or something.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by hepcat » Mon Mar 20, 2017 4:03 pm

But as we've all seen, we're not dealing with a stable human being. He is obsessed with his "ratings". I could easily see him just saying, "Screw you all for not loving me!" and taking off one day.

Although I think Paingod may be right too. His need to enrich himself and his brand might...wait for it...trump his crazed ego.
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by PLW » Mon Mar 20, 2017 4:11 pm

Just got to that part of the hearing. It's almost exactly 3 hours in, and it is majestic.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by Holman » Mon Mar 20, 2017 4:11 pm

The flailing and lying in response to the hearings would be hilarious if they weren't symptomatic of such sick rot.

Sean Spicer said today that Paul Manafort played only a very limited role in the campaign and Flynn was "a volunteer."

(Manafort was the chairman of the campaign. Flynn was Trump's sole foreign policy adviser for months.)

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by malchior » Mon Mar 20, 2017 4:14 pm

hepcat wrote:But as we've all seen, we're not dealing with a stable human being. He is obsessed with his "ratings". I could easily see him just saying, "Screw you all for not loving me!" and taking off one day.
I actually don't think this is possible.I believe he would need to be pulled down and he would do a ton of damage on the way out. I don't think he has the capacity to grok that the masses don't *love* him.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by Pyperkub » Mon Mar 20, 2017 7:05 pm

Max Peck wrote:But who watches the watchers?
The political appointee charged with keeping watch over Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt and his aides has offered unsolicited advice so often that after just four weeks on the job, Pruitt has shut him out of many staff meetings, according to two senior administration officials.

At the Pentagon, they’re privately calling the former Marine officer and fighter pilot who’s supposed to keep his eye on Defense Secretary Jim Mattis “the commissar,” according to a high-ranking defense official with knowledge of the situation. It’s a reference to Soviet-era Communist Party officials who were assigned to military units to ensure their commanders remained loyal.

Most members of President Trump’s Cabinet do not yet have leadership teams in place or even nominees for top deputies. But they do have an influential coterie of senior aides installed by the White House who are charged — above all — with monitoring the secretaries’ loyalty, according to eight officials in and outside the administration.
I'm really interested in Rip's take on the politburo political officers in the Pentagon. It reminds me of the political officer in the Hunt for Red October.

Is there any chance he might see it that way?
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by Rip » Mon Mar 20, 2017 7:16 pm

Pyperkub wrote:
Max Peck wrote:But who watches the watchers?
The political appointee charged with keeping watch over Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt and his aides has offered unsolicited advice so often that after just four weeks on the job, Pruitt has shut him out of many staff meetings, according to two senior administration officials.

At the Pentagon, they’re privately calling the former Marine officer and fighter pilot who’s supposed to keep his eye on Defense Secretary Jim Mattis “the commissar,” according to a high-ranking defense official with knowledge of the situation. It’s a reference to Soviet-era Communist Party officials who were assigned to military units to ensure their commanders remained loyal.

Most members of President Trump’s Cabinet do not yet have leadership teams in place or even nominees for top deputies. But they do have an influential coterie of senior aides installed by the White House who are charged — above all — with monitoring the secretaries’ loyalty, according to eight officials in and outside the administration.
I'm really interested in Rip's take on the politburo political officers in the Pentagon. It reminds me of the political officer in the Hunt for Red October.

Is there any chance he might see it that way?
My take is this.
Trump’s approach may not be so different from Abraham Lincoln’s. Coming into the White House after more than a ­half-century of Democrats in power, Lincoln worked swiftly to oust hostile bureaucrats and appoint allies. But he still had to deal with an Army led by many senior officers who sympathized with the South, as well as a government beset by internal divisions.

Gettysburg College professor Allen C. Guelzo described Lincoln as “surrounded by smiling enemies,” which prompted him to embed his friends into army camps as well as some federal departments.

“I think that presidents actually do this more than it appears,” said Guelzo, adding that Lincoln dispatched Quartermaster General of the U.S. Army Montgomery Meigs to circulate among the Army of the Potomac to pick up any negative “doggerel” or insults officers made about him.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by hepcat » Mon Mar 20, 2017 7:20 pm

Whoa, where was THIS Rip when Obama was in office? He could've explained away all the stuff he complained about during that period.
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by Holman » Mon Mar 20, 2017 8:00 pm

Of course with Lincoln the problem was opposing treason rather than covering it up. But otherwise, sure, the situations are nearly exactly perfectly the same, I guess.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by Holman » Mon Mar 20, 2017 8:34 pm

It's like when Lincoln appointed Tad as head of the Army of the Tennessee because family loyalty matters.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by Max Peck » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:31 pm

PLW wrote:You can watch the whole thing. It's only four hours long, and it is actually pretty interesting.
Additionally, the Washington Post has a transcript up.
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by Zarathud » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:48 pm

Lincoln who appointed rivals to his Cabinet to preserve the Union? Obama publicly followed Lincoln's example by bringing Hillary into the State Department. He didn't hire a Commissar to ride shotgun on her.

Trump sucks at being Lincoln, too. So sad.
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by Isgrimnur » Mon Mar 20, 2017 10:53 pm

He hasn't even challenged anyone to wrestle him.
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by Max Peck » Mon Mar 20, 2017 11:28 pm

Every good villain needs an origin story; Bannon's needs a retcon.
It is a story oft-repeated and, at first, quite moving. It is the story of Marty Bannon, father of the White House chief strategist, Stephen K. Bannon, and how he lost much of his nest egg when the financial system cratered in 2008. He had worked for AT&T for 50 years, buying the stock when it was as safe as gold (only gold paid no dividend) and was now watching it go south at such an alarming rate that he decided to sell it. In a flash, the system turned on Marty and a lifetime of savings was gone. For his son Steve, it was an unforgettable lesson. It made him the revolutionary he is today.

The story reappeared last week in the Wall Street Journal. “The only net worth my father had beside his tiny little house was that AT&T stock,” Steve Bannon was quoted as saying. “And nobody is held accountable? All these firms get bailed out. There’s no equity taken from anybody. There’s no one in jail.”

That day, that October day when Marty Bannon panicked and took Jim Cramer’s advice from the TV and sold his AT&T stock, was when Steve Bannon had an epiphany: “Everything since then has come from there,” he said.

This could be Sen. Bernie Sanders speaking. This could be the indignant writers of the 2015 movie “The Big Short,” which ended by noting that almost no one went to jail for the giant scam. I also think of New York City cab drivers, many of them immigrants, who leveraged themselves for three generations to buy a cab and now have had their investment gutted by Uber. This is the human cost of disruption, which, if you don’t happen to be poor and drive a cab, is supposedly a wonderful thing.

At some point in the Steve Bannon story I started wondering: If his father got fleeced, if “nobody [was] held accountable,” how can the remedy be less regulation? If Wall Street picked his old man’s pocket, why has President Trump appointed tycoon after tycoon who think the fairest tax is none at all and, in some cases, got immensely rich by collapsing companies and squeezing employees?

Where is the Trump appointee who cares about Bannon’s father? Why don’t they go down the halls of the White House to reassure Bannon and tell him it will never happen again? Why don’t they name an executive action after his father: The Martin Bannon, You Will Never Lose Your Nest Egg Act of 2017? The government will see to it.

Maybe Steve Bannon is right. Maybe someone should have gone to jail for selling junk wrapped in the American Dream to people who only wanted to buy a home like his father’s. But that would have taken some new laws. As it happened, the reason almost no one went to jail is that no laws were broken. “Sometimes there’s frustration, because the things that have happened don’t rise to the level of criminal conduct,” Preet Bharara, the just-fired U.S. attorney for Manhattan, said back in 2014. “People are being jerks and stupid and greedy and negligent, but you can’t pin a criminal case on them.”

But the Trump administration is not for new laws and tighter regulation. It wants to roll back the Dodd-Frank financial reform, which, among other things, created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, whose name tells you all you need to know about its purpose. The president wants to hack nearly one-third out of the Environmental Protection Agency’s budget, and he appointed an administrator, Scott Pruitt, who hates the very agency he’s supposed to run.

Why cut the EPA budget? Is our water too pure? Is the air too clean? Shall we go back to where we once were? Look what Volkswagen did. It cheated on emissions standards and allegedly lied about it until the EPA outed it. Shall we leave these matters to the private sector?

Let them breathe nitrogen oxides.

I have heard too many people in business and finance complain about excessive regulation not to think there is something of a problem there. Maybe Dodd-Frank is too burdensome. Maybe class-action suits need to be limited. Maybe Obamacare really was a fiasco. Maybe. Maybe. Maybe.

But Bannon’s “administrative state” boogeyman is not what flattened his father’s nest egg. It was not excessive regulation that fleeced his father or, for that matter, changed AT&T from Ma Bell into just another business behemoth. Go home, Steve. You need to think.
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by pr0ner » Mon Mar 20, 2017 11:55 pm

Isgrimnur wrote:He hasn't even challenged anyone to wrestle him.
Insert clip of Trump getting abused at Wrestlemania here.
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by Smoove_B » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:10 am

This is totally normal, right?
Jamie Gorelick, an attorney and ethics adviser for Trump, said Monday that the first daughter will not have an official title but will get a West Wing office, government-issued communications devices and security clearance to access classified information.

...

On Friday she participated in a meeting on vocational training with the president and the German chancellor, Angela Merkel. She stepped down from her position at the Trump Organization before her father’s inauguration, but still owns her own fashion label.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by hepcat » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:11 am

Checkers had an office, didn't he?
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by El Guapo » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:17 am

U.S. Limits Devices for Passengers on Foreign Airlines From Eight Countries.

You'll never guess the religion of those eight countries!
Passengers on foreign airlines headed to the United States from 10 airports in eight majority-Muslim countries have been barred from carrying electronic devices larger than a cellphone under a new flight restriction enacted on Tuesday by the Trump administration.

Officials called the directive an attempt to address gaps in foreign airport security, and said it was not based on any specific or credible threat of an imminent attack.

The Department of Homeland Security said the restricted items included laptop computers, tablets, cameras, travel printers and games bigger than a phone. The restrictions would not apply to aircraft crews, officials said in a briefing to reporters on Monday night that outlined the terms of the ban.

The new policy took effect at 3 a.m. E.D.T. on Tuesday, and must be followed within 96 hours by airlines flying to the United States from airports in Amman, Jordan; Cairo; Istanbul; Jeddah and Riyadh in Saudi Arabia; Kuwait City; Casablanca, Morocco; Doha, Qatar; and Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates.

It applies only to flights on foreign carriers, and not American-operated airlines. Officials did not say how long the ban would remain in place or if other airports would be added.
So is this: (1) related to genuine security concerns; (2) part of Trump's broader effort to punish / stigmatize travel from Muslim countries; or (3) prompted by the fact that long-haul carriers based in the Middle East (e.g., Qatar Airlines) have been taking major market share from U.S. long-haul carriers due to their generally superior product?

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by PLW » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:25 am

Isgrimnur wrote:He hasn't even challenged anyone to wrestle him.
Of course he hasn't. He'd lose.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by malchior » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:31 am

El Guapo wrote:So is this: (1) related to genuine security concerns; (2) part of Trump's broader effort to punish / stigmatize travel from Muslim countries; or (3) prompted by the fact that long-haul carriers based in the Middle East (e.g., Qatar Airlines) have been taking major market share from U.S. long-haul carriers due to their generally superior product?
I'll go with 2 and 3 because 1 makes no fucking sense. They are worried about explosives in the cabin...so what do they do? Hmm maybe put them in the cargo hold?!? What happens if they know about this widely publicized policy and just transit via another country? Good grief these guys are mendacious liars. Yet the dimwits in red will lap this shit up as tough on terror radical Islam.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by El Guapo » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:34 am

malchior wrote:
El Guapo wrote:So is this: (1) related to genuine security concerns; (2) part of Trump's broader effort to punish / stigmatize travel from Muslim countries; or (3) prompted by the fact that long-haul carriers based in the Middle East (e.g., Qatar Airlines) have been taking major market share from U.S. long-haul carriers due to their generally superior product?
I'll go with 2 and 3 because 1 makes no fucking sense. They are worried about explosives in the cabin...so what do they do? Hmm maybe put them in the cargo hold?!? What happens if they know about this widely publicized policy and just transit via another country? Good grief these guys are mendacious liars. Yet the dimwits in red will lap this shit up as tough on terror radical Islam.
Also even in the best case scenario, this is the kind of thing where it sure would be useful for the administration to have some credibility on, well, the truth.

I assume that Qatar Airlines (among others) has already retained a very expensive big U.S. law firm to file suit on this.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by stessier » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:40 am

The cargo containers in the belly of the planes are more bomb proof than the passenger area. Also, the bombs are theoretically harder to set off. I'm not saying that's definitely the reason, but (1) is hardly crazy.

I'm guessing the "only these airports" thing has to do with the screening at the airports. Again, not totally crazy.

I have no idea about (3). The video I saw about the $21000 seat was on a flight from Dubai, but I don't remember the airline. It was a pretty cool plane though.
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by gilraen » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:48 am

stessier wrote: I'm guessing the "only these airports" thing has to do with the screening at the airports. Again, not totally crazy.
Actually, pretty crazy because screening at the airports isn't done by the airline staff and doesn't vary based on which airline you are boarding to fly to the U.S., and yet the new restrictions do not apply to U.S.-based carriers. Which immediately makes the entire new policy just a form of retaliation against foreign carriers.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by El Guapo » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:53 am

stessier wrote:The cargo containers in the belly of the planes are more bomb proof than the passenger area. Also, the bombs are theoretically harder to set off. I'm not saying that's definitely the reason, but (1) is hardly crazy.

I'm guessing the "only these airports" thing has to do with the screening at the airports. Again, not totally crazy.

I have no idea about (3). The video I saw about the $21000 seat was on a flight from Dubai, but I don't remember the airline. It was a pretty cool plane though.
It *could* be based on logical security analysis, but again, that's where the administration's total lack of credibility (especially after the Muslim ban) becomes a problem. Also I find it hard to believe that these eight countries are the only ones with screening issues impacting this issue - how much better could the screening in (say) Kenya be?

In any event, I'm sure we'll find out, because this sure as shit is going to get litigated by expensive lawyers. This is utterly devastating for the big Middle Eastern airlines - no one is going to want to fly from New York to Dubai without a laptop or tablet. Especially business travelers, who are going to want to be able to work on a flight that long.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by stessier » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:53 am

gilraen wrote:
stessier wrote: I'm guessing the "only these airports" thing has to do with the screening at the airports. Again, not totally crazy.
Actually, pretty crazy because screening at the airports isn't done by the airline staff and doesn't vary based on which airline you are boarding to fly to the U.S., and yet the new restrictions do not apply to U.S.-based carriers. Which immediately makes the entire new policy just a form of retaliation against foreign carriers.
The one I saw said "all flight originating from these countries". If it's only foreign carriers, then yeah, that changes it.
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by El Guapo » Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:56 am

stessier wrote:
gilraen wrote:
stessier wrote: I'm guessing the "only these airports" thing has to do with the screening at the airports. Again, not totally crazy.
Actually, pretty crazy because screening at the airports isn't done by the airline staff and doesn't vary based on which airline you are boarding to fly to the U.S., and yet the new restrictions do not apply to U.S.-based carriers. Which immediately makes the entire new policy just a form of retaliation against foreign carriers.
The one I saw said "all flight originating from these countries". If it's only foreign carriers, then yeah, that changes it.
Yes, it's only foreign carriers.

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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by Kurth » Tue Mar 21, 2017 11:09 am

El Guapo wrote:
stessier wrote:
gilraen wrote:
stessier wrote: I'm guessing the "only these airports" thing has to do with the screening at the airports. Again, not totally crazy.
Actually, pretty crazy because screening at the airports isn't done by the airline staff and doesn't vary based on which airline you are boarding to fly to the U.S., and yet the new restrictions do not apply to U.S.-based carriers. Which immediately makes the entire new policy just a form of retaliation against foreign carriers.
The one I saw said "all flight originating from these countries". If it's only foreign carriers, then yeah, that changes it.
Yes, it's only foreign carriers.
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by tgb » Tue Mar 21, 2017 11:49 am

I really think history will judge the hearing yesterday as the defining moment that signaled the end of the Trump regime.
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by hepcat » Tue Mar 21, 2017 12:18 pm

...or the end of the United States as the leader of the free world.
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LordMortis
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by LordMortis » Tue Mar 21, 2017 12:34 pm

I was just in a lab where some advertisement being broadcast claimed to be Limbaugh endorsed was talking about what you can do to protect yourself from Obama's (operatives?) attacking of the Trump administration that is having disastrous effects on WallStreet today.

I had to get out of there as quickly as I could before my mouth got me in trouble.

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Paingod
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Re: The Trump Presidency Thread

Post by Paingod » Tue Mar 21, 2017 12:35 pm

hepcat wrote:...or the end of the United States as the leader of the free world.
Since the election, we've been spiraling in the toilet. The question is whether or not someone can pluck the lead weight off so we don't get sucked down the drain and can instead just bob around in there while the water refills for the next election.
LordMortis wrote:I was just in a lab where some advertisement being broadcast claimed to be Limbaugh endorsed was talking about what you can do to protect yourself from Obama's (operatives?) attacking of the Trump administration that is having disastrous effects on WallStreet today.

I had to get out of there as quickly as I could before my mouth got me in trouble.
People where I work have been at each other and the manager has stepped in to put an end to it. So Trumpers walk around like they won, and everyone else has lost complete respect for them. It's awesome.

On a related note, I'm considering carrying around an assortment of permanent marker colors in my car. When I see a "Trump" bumper sticker, I want to fill in the "T" so it's as invisible as possible.
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