Oh Good, A War Room. That’s Sure To Help.

Trump speaks to U.S. troops at Naval Air Station Sigonella in Sicily, Italy, on May 27. (Jonathan Ernst/Reuters).

A war room. Why? All the scandals engulfing the Tiny Tyrant, of course. The mere fact that the Tiny Tyrant feels this is a situation of war lends credence to the malignant reality reaching out with a stranglehold on us all. This is a siege mentality overlaid on an already highly unstable and paranoid mindset.

President Trump and his advisers, seeking to contain the escalating Russia crisis that threatens to consume his presidency, are considering a retooling of his senior staff and the creation of a “war room” within the White House, according to several aides and outside Trump allies.

Following Trump’s return to Washington on Saturday night from a nine-day foreign trip that provided a bit of a respite from the controversy back home, the White House plans to far more aggressively combat the cascading revelations about contacts between Trump associates, including Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser, and Russia.

White House officials are also trying to find ways to revive Trump’s stalled policy agenda in Congress and to more broadly overhaul the way the White House communicates with the public.

That includes proposals for more travel and campaign-style rallies throughout the country so that Trump can speak directly to his supporters, as well as changes in the pace and nature of press briefings, likely including a diminished role for embattled White House press secretary Sean Spicer.

Oh right, a “return” to campaigning. A good portion of Trumpholes have now figured out that supporting him is akin to having your hands filled with a steaming pile of shit, so I don’t imagine the campaign rally trail will be quite so happy this time around. This also means that Trump will once again be preaching and hollering hate everywhere, in an attempt to provide a salve for bruised egos everywhere, a place for people to lay blame. Like last time, I also expect there will be another spike in hate fueled violence, on top of the one which is still ongoing.

It would be truly great if every person in uStates could figure out that campaigning is not the same as presidenting, and it has been made more than obvious which one Trump can manage, and which one he clearly cannot manage.

While much remained fluid Saturday, the beefed-up operation could include the return of some of Trump’s more combative campaign aides, including former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, who was fired nearly a year ago, and former deputy campaign manager David N. Bossie, who made his name in politics by investigating Bill and Hillary Clinton for two decades. Both of them have already been part of ongoing discussions about how to build a “war room,” which have been led in part by chief strategist Stephen K. Bannon.

[…]

“Go to the mattresses,” a line from “The Godfather” film about turning to tough mercenaries during troubled times, has circulated among Trump’s friends, according to two people close to the “war room” discussions.

Well, how … apt.

Meanwhile, White House counsel Donald McGahn is mulling expanding his office, and an outside legal team led by Marc E. Kasowitz is readying to meet with Trump and guide him, including on whether he should continue to comment on the Russia probes on Twitter.

Kushner has played an active role in the effort to rethink and rearrange the communications team, improve the White House’s surrogate operation, and develop an internal group to combat the influx of negative stories and revelations over the FBI’s Russia probe, said someone with knowledge of the coming changes.

“The bottom line is they need fresh legs; they need more legs,” said Barry Bennett, who served as a political adviser to Trump during the general election. “They’re in full-scale war, and they’re thinly staffed.”

[…]

Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the deputy White House press secretary, is being considered as a replacement behind the lectern and is likely to appear on camera more often in coming weeks. White House aides have also talked about having a rotating cast of staff brief the media, a group that could include officials such as national security adviser H.R. McMaster. Having several aides share the briefing responsibilities could help prevent Trump — who has a notoriously short attention span — from growing bored or angry with any one staffer.

Shuffle, move, scoot, change, whatever the fuck. The key words in the above would be: 1) Trump 2) short attention span 3) bored 4) angry. The problem? Trump. The solution? Get rid of Trump.

Aides and allies of Trump say they have come to the realization that unflattering stories about Russia will be part of the daily conversation for the foreseeable future and acknowledge that the White House has been ill-equipped to handle them.

Christopher Ruddy, a longtime Trump friend, said the White House has been caught flat-footed on many of the Russia stories.

“Because they did not believe there’s anything to it, they’re playing catch-up to get their side of the story out,” Ruddy said.

Oh, fucking bullshit! Bullshit. This didn’t take anyone by surprise, they just assumed he’d get away with it, like he has before.

Being outside of Washington among his supporters, particularly in a state he won last year, energizes Trump and provides a way for him to communicate without the filter of the media, his advisers say.

“The conventional ways of communicating are not working for them,” one adviser said, adding that Trump should consider Facebook Live sessions and get out on the road “as frequently as possible.”

“They have to get the campaign brand back,” the adviser said.

Oh yes, the brand. All you need is hate and the brand. Intelligence, compassion, competency? Nah, who the hell needs those things?

“I hope he’ll travel more and do these rallies once a week,” Bennett said. “You get to say whatever you want to say, and you don’t have to take questions.”

You know what would be great? If lots and lots and lots of people showed up at said rallies, and refused to stay quiet and listen, and yelled out all their questions about just how he’s fucking everyone and everything over, and why does he hate America so damn much.

There’s much, much more at The Washington Post.

A More Violent Christianity.

Jean Colombe, Detail of a medieval miniature of the Siege of Antioch from Sébastien Mamerot’s Les Passages d’Outremer.

Coach Dave (Daubenmire) is on a tear again, this time over the woeful lack of aggressive violence in today’s Christianity. More violence! More aggression! More manly men being assholes! Yeah, that’s the ticket! I will say that Coach Dave gets a point for honesty.

“The only thing that is going to save Western civilization is a more aggressive, a more violent Christianity,” he said.

A good part of the planet is still soaking in the blood spilt by Christians throughout the ages, who could never seem to get enough war, torture, and various kinds of killing. Given a warped enough view, one could see that as ‘saving’, I suppose.

Playing a clip of Trump shoving aside the prime minister of Montenegro at a recent NATO summit so that he could stand in front of the group of assembled leaders, Daubenmire heaped praise on Trump for showing that “he is large and in charge.”

“Look at him,” Daubenmire screamed gleefully while watching the clip. “They’re all little puppies, ain’t nobody barking at him … He’s walking in authority. He walked to the front and center and they all know it, too, man. He just spanked them all.”

Trump’s behavior is an example for the church, Daubenmire said. “The Lord is showing us a picture of the authority we should be walking in.”

Oh. So that’s what Coach Dave means, that men should wallow in being toxic assholes. I’m rather amazed he hasn’t noticed just how many men already do that sort of thing. It’s a problem. Basically, this just sounds like the posturing plaint of “hey, you aren’t pussy-whipped, are you?” A moronic, faux-macho stance of fucking idiots everywhere. Allow me to translate Coach Dave: “See that? Trump isn’t pussy-whipped, he’s a pussy grabber!” Yeah, grate™.

Daubenmire then cited Republican congressional candidate Greg Gianforte’s assault on a reporter the day before he won a special election in Montana as another example for the church.

“People are sick and tired of it,” he said. “They’re saying, ‘Yes, a fighter! Go, dude, go!’ … Who won? The dude that took the other dude to the ground.”

Well, no, dude, that’s not what happened. Most of the votes were already in when Gianforte assaulted the reporter, a crime he was charged with, by the way, because he was guilty. That’s not something to celebrate, and you certainly should not twist facts to make it seem like voters approved of his crime. I’m sure some of them did, but I’d be willing to bet most did not. No one wants to stand in front of someone who has so little self control. This person is sick and tired of all the toxic assholes running around, using dude dude dude in a sentence because their minds and vocabularies are so damn impoverished.

“That should be the heart cry of Christian men,” Daubenmire said. “From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of God has suffered violence and violent men take it by force.”

At least he got something right. Yes, Christianity has always been a horrible snarl of blood-soaked violence, brimming over with violent men who believe in taking everything and everyone by force. Seems to me it’s past time for that sort of shit to be over.

Via RWW.

None So Blind As The Faithful.

Screen Grab. Playable video at link.

The willful blindness of some people never ceases to baffle me. I’m not much a one for taking things on faith, and I never take any politician on faith of any kind. Politics being what they are, an arena for game playing, with rewards for lying and other duplicitous behaviour, it strikes me as pure folly to rely on faith in the words of any politician, and in particular when it comes to someone like Trump. I’m not overly inclined to being sympathetic to Trumpholes, but it’s difficult to not have compassion for those who feel betrayed as result of their blind faith in a person who did not deserve it in any way. The best they can do now is to get damn active in The Resistance, and try to atone for boosting the Tiny Tyrant into place.

An upstate New York man who sold many of his possessions last year to fund a months-long tour playing music at Trump rallies now regrets his vote for the Republican candidate.

“I had everything riding on the fact that he was going to make things better,” Kraig Moss told the Associated Press. “He lied to me.”

Then-candidate Donald Trump looked Moss in the eye at one rally in Iowa and told the grieving father he would help end the drug epidemic that had claimed his 24-year-old son, whose ashes accompanied the truck driver to 45 rallies.

“He promised me, in honor of my son, that he was going to combat the ongoing heroin epidemic,” Moss said. “He got me hook, line and sinker.”

Post-election analyses found that Trump over-performed in Rust Belt counties ravaged by public health crises — such as drug and alcohol addiction and suicide — but the president’s budget released this week slashes funding for addiction treatment, research and prevention.

Medicaid funding would shrivel under Trump’s 10-year plan, which could devastate coverage to an estimated three in 10 adults addicted to opioids.

[…]

Trump promised during the campaign and after his election to help families suffering from the opioid epidemic — but his voters feel betrayed by the president’s focus on tax cuts, military spending and border security.

“I didn’t see this coming,” said Paul Kusiak, of Massachusetts, who told Trump the candidate about his sons’ successful battles with addiction. “I’m trying desperately to have hope and take the president at his word.”

[…]

“Inside I’m screaming,” said Sandra Chavez, of Sacramento, whose son died from an infection related to drug use. “We’re going backward with Donald Trump’s plan.”

Trump has proposed cutting funds for addiction research, prevention programs, drug courts and prescription drug monitoring, as well as eliminating support for training of addiction professional.

Justin Butler, a 36-year-old Trump voter from Cleveland, fears he will be back on the streets, using drugs and selling them, if Medicaid stops paying for addiction treatment.

“He’s turning his back on people,” Butler said. “He’s a liar.”

It’s one hell of a harsh lesson, and none of these people, in spite of voting for Trump, deserves to be tossed aside like so much trash. None of us deserve that. That said, as noted earlier, being sorry isn’t enough. Regretful Trump voters need to channel that disappointment and betrayal into working for The Resistance, and to now work to get the Tiny Tyrant unseated.

Via Raw Story. There’s a similar story, about a Trump voter who is completely dependent on SSI, finding out she most likely will not have that anymore under the Tiny Tyrant.

“The Germans Are Bad, Very Bad.”

U.S. President Donald Trump looks up during a meeting about healthcare at the White House in Washington, U.S., March 13, 2017. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque.

Oh, the Tiny Tyrant, Fucking Idiot in Chief, is busy spewing stupid all over Europe, and making enemies out of everyone. In this particular instance, the focus is on how absolutely evil Germans are, because cars. Yep.  Oh my, someone else is better than Grate Amerikkka™ at something, they must be squashed!

Donald Trump is ready to fight Germany in an auto battle according to Germany’s Der Spiegel.

Trump got a chilly reception at the NATO summit in Belgium after attacking fellow members. But he was caught pledging a battle with German automakers as part of his anger with “back dues” he feels the country owes to NATO. As CNN’s Jake Tapper noted Thursday, “Trump seems to think it’s like a country club.”

In a discussion about the country’s trade surplus, Trump said. “The Germans are evil, very evil.”

“Look at the millions of cars they sell in the US, and we’ll stop that,” sources told Der Spiegel.

According to the report, EU Commissioner Jean-Claude Juncker took up for Germany explaining that “free trade is good for all.”

According to a report from the “Süddeutsche Zeitung,” the EU allies were horrified by the willingness of the Americans to view global trade with such a lack of awareness. Trump’s economic consultant Gary Cohn was said to have chided German auto trade during a discussion between the US and Germany and the USA and Belgium. Trump had previously attacked them during another conversation.

Via Raw Story.

Speaking of the Trudget: Poverty Is A State of Mind.

Ben Carson. Getty Images.

I just got a post up about The Trudget and Rethuglican “compassion”, and then I see this little gem from Ben Carson, who seems to think that poverty is a state of mind, rather than a very concrete situation of having no money and no resources. When it comes to Carson, Fucking Idiot is not enough of a descriptor.

During an interview with Sirius XM radio on Tuesday, Mr Carson suggested people are poor because they learned the “wrong mindset” from their parents.

The retired neurosurgeon oversees a department that manages housing for the country’s low-income population.

His comments quickly drew sharp criticism on social media.

“I think poverty to a large extent is also a state of mind,” he said in an interview that aired on Wednesday.

“You take somebody that has the right mindset, you can take everything from them and put them on the street, and I guarantee in a little while they’ll be right back up there.

“And you take somebody with the wrong mindset, you can give them everything in the world, they’ll work their way right back down to the bottom.”

Has someone been giving poverty-ridden peoples ‘everything in the world’? I haven’t heard anything to that effect. Most people who find themselves in poverty simply want the basics, along with opportunities to get out of perpetual poverty. Unfortunately, Amerikkka is set up to keep poor people poor, and keep the filthy rich sucking the marrow out of everyone else’s bones.

Ben Carson, there simply is not enough Fuck in the universe for you.

BBC News has the full story, along with some choice responses which were tweeted.

The Fiscal Interests of the Unborn.

Jonathan Ernst | Reuters
U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Director Mick Mulvaney (R) listens as U.S. President Donald Trump meets with members of the Republican Study Committee at the White House in Washington, U.S. March 17, 2017.

In a stunning display of republican “compassion”, Mick Mulvaney defended the $3.6 trillion cuts to domestic programs in the tragic Trudget. Rather than address all those who desperately need assistance to simply put food on their table; people who already face a tangle of red tape to get the slimmest of benefits, Mulvaney waxed dispassionate about the fiscal rights of the non-existent. It’s great, just fabulous, to take food away from living children, because of Mulvaney’s grandchildren, who are at this point, non-existent. But hey, the potentiality of grandchildren, well, that’s important! Much more important than poor children, who barely have enough food to keep them alive.

It should not need to be pointed out that food which allows for subsistence is a terrible thing when it comes to children. Children who are not eating enough have an awful time trying to concentrate, they do poorly in school, and aren’t very active physically, because that takes energy, and when you don’t have enough fuel, well, you get the picture. The domestic programs in place can barely manage to get enough food to families, it’s not as if it’s a massive bounty. There is a massive, horrible problem in America when it comes to hungry children. That problem keeps getting buried, stuffed in the back of closet, and given the Trudget, it seems as though republicans think it’s okay if they just get on with starving, as those hungry children are not important at all when weighed against the non-existent.

During a hearing about the $3.6 trillion in cuts to domestic programs included in President Trump’s proposed budget, Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney made a case that the fiscal interests of the unborn should take precedence over the lives of present-day Americans — or at least those who rely on food stamps to eat or public schools to educate their children.

During a hearing on Wednesday, Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) grilled Mulvaney about the budget’s 25 percent cut to food assistance for the poorest Americans.

“Mr. Mulvaney, at least 20 percent of people eligible for SNAP don’t even receive SNAP because of stigma and other reasons,” she said. “So there are more people who need SNAP benefits… And you have a 13 percent cut in the Department of Education. The most vulnerable kids who need — ”

Mulvaney cut her off and made an impassioned case that people like Lee aren’t sufficiently concerned about his “unborn grandchildren.” He said:

What about the standard of living for my grandchildren who aren’t here yet? Who will end up inheriting $30 trillion in debt? Fifty trillion dollars in debt? A hundred trillion dollars? What about their standard — who’s going to pay the bill, Congressman? That’s what this is all about. That’s what this new perspective is. Who is going to pay for all the stuff you just mentioned? Us? Or somebody else? And I suggest to you if it’s important enough to pay, to have, then we need to be paying for it. Because right now, my unborn grandchildren are paying for it, and I think that is morally bankrupt.

And there you have it, the rethuglican rationale in all its ugliness – the non-existent are paying, and that’s bad, really super-evil! I had no idea the non-existent had pockets to pick.

Think Progress has the full story.

Pants On Fire: Fact Check Time!

USA Today published a highly embarrassing article about the Fuck You Care Plan, which was also highly deceptive. A good many people saw their tweet, and no doubt will simply take it on faith that it’s correct. It’s not. This sort of chicanery is not helping, it’s already difficult enough for many people to figure out what the hell is true, and what is not. Too many people rely on headlines or brief glimpses to form an opinion, then busily spread misinformation all over the place. This is the worst sort of irresponsibility.

Wednesday afternoon, the Congressional Budget Office released an absolutely brutal report quantifying the consequences of the massive health care bill that recently passed by the House of Representatives. Among other things, the report concludes that “the number of uninsured people relative to the number projected under current law would reach 19 million in 2020 and 23 million in 2026.”

That’s right, 23 million people will lose health coverage under Trumpcare.

Here’s how USA Today decided to cover this news:

USA Today: #BREAKING CBO says House Obamacare repeal bill covers 1 million more people than prior draft.

USA Today’s tweet, which also tracks a breaking news alert that appeared at the top of its website, is literally true. A previous CBO report found that an earlier version of Trumpcare would strip 24 million people of health insurance by 2026 — slightly more than the current version.

But USA Today’s take on the CBO report is also a case study in how media can mislead its audience without actually making any factually untrue statements.

Though this reality may sometimes be lost on reporters who are immersed in national political debates, most Americans don’t actually keep track of the latest twists and turns arising from the Congressional Budget Office. Outside of a small number of hyper-engaged individuals, very few voters will remember that, more than two months ago, CBO found that 24 million people will lose coverage under Trumpcare.

Think Progress has the full story.

$100 Million and Ethically Questionable.

Ivanka Trump participates in a presentation ceremony of The Collar of Abdulaziz Al Saud Medal to President Donald Trump at the Royal Court Palace, Saturday, May 20, 2017, in Riyadh. CREDIT: AP Photo/Evan Vucci.

Oh, palace intrigue, it never ends. Once again, a deal struck now reverberates back to the Tiny Tyrant condemning something done by others, but it’s okely dokely for him and his family. Y’know, Donny has to absolutely love it there, in spite of that little curtsy gaffe, look at all that gilt! Is it too much to hope he’ll stay?

Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have pledged $100 million to the World Bank’s Women Entrepreneurs Fund, an initiative proposed by first daughter and senior White House adviser Ivanka Trump. The fund, which was first announced in April, has already raised serious legal and ethical questions about how a White House adviser can both shape foreign policy and actively solicit donations from foreign countries for the fund.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the initiative would provide technical assistance and investments for projects that support the economic empowerment of women around the globe. Ivanka Trump does not control the money, though she first pitched the idea to World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim and has discussed the idea with leaders such as German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

On Sunday, World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim praised “Ivanka’s leadership” in spearheading the fund, and called it “a stunning achievement.”

Getting people to shovel money your way is a handy talent, no doubt. A stunning achievement, though? Oh, I don’t think so. Could the bar for this family possibly be lower?

President Donald Trump was extremely critical of Saudi Arabia’s contributions to the Clinton Foundation while campaigning against Hillary Clinton, going so far as to call for Clinton to return all the money given to the foundation, both in speeches on the campaign trail and during the October presidential debate.

Credit: Facebook.

Donald J. Trump: Saudi Arabia and many of the countries that gave vast amounts of money to the Clinton Foundation want women as slaves and to kill gays. Hillary must return all money from such countries.

“You talk about women and women’s rights. These are people that push gays off business — off buildings. These are people that kill women and treat women horribly, and yet you take their money,” Trump said during the debate. “So I’d like to ask you right now. Why don’t you give back the money that you’ve taken from certain countries that treat certain groups of people so horribly? Why don’t you give back the money. I think it would be a great gesture.”

The Clinton Foundation received between 10 and 25 million from Saudi Arabia. Gosh, that’s barely a peach pit next to 100 million, isn’t it? Naturally, Trump has not brought up receiving that amount of money from Saudia Arabia, because now that sort of thing is just fine. Great, in fact.

Think Progress has the full story.

Sunday Facepalm.

Uh Oh, it’s the Apocalypse. Again. I’ll confess, I didn’t watch the video, but I love that capture of Bakker holding up a piece of paper, with ‘Words’ written on it. There are definite echoes of A High-Tech Lynching! A Crucifixion! A Tsunami! An Earthquake! The Gates of Hell! in Bakker’s latest apocalyptic admonition.

Jim Bakker repeated his claims that criticism of Donald Trump is inciting violence and bringing about the Apocalypse and End Times, and asserted that conservative media pundits are being targeted for persecution.

Oh, the brutal bugbear of modern times – criticism! Criticism, no matter how mild, constructive, or politely couched, now considered the equivalent of purges, witch hunts, and lynchings in certain quarters, and it is beyond absurd. While criticism can certainly sting, it’s not life threatening, and it’s not a terroristic act, either. Regimes are noted for their hatred and fear of dissent and criticism though, and this does get confirmed, time and time again.

Bakker pointed to attacks on Trump as proof that “the Apocalypse has already began” and “the spirit of Antichrist” is growing in America.

“They want to kill our president, President Trump, with words,” he said. “They want to assassinate his person.”

Honestly, no one needs to go to the trouble of doing so. The Tiny Tyrant does a great job of assassinating his own character, such as it is.

Critical words about Trump, according to Bakker, are the fulfillment of biblical prophecy about the First Horseman of the Apocalypse.

He pointed to the cancellation of a Tim Allen sitcom as further proof that conservatives are under attack.

Uh…okay. The first horse, the white one, is the one which is most disputed, and interpreted rather widely. Could be Conquest, Christ, The Antichrist, Pestilence, Evil, or Empire Prosperity. Now, apparently, the rider of the white horse is Criticism! Oh woe is us and all that shit. As for Tim Allen, what? And more to the point, who fucking cares? I’d assume a sitcom being cancelled was due to the fact it wasn’t bringing in eyeballs. Or money. Most likely due to not being funny.

Bakker claimed that “the devil is trying to cut out the voice of the church” and that “they’re eliminating anyone that is pro-Trump from every broadcast; soon, very soon, the only conservatives will be on Christian television and then we’re the next target—write it down!”

Seems to me you can’t get rid of pro-Trump people in all sorts of broadcast; they’re worse than lice. If you want to claim that conservatives are being herded toward the last bastion of Christian television, you’re going to have to do some work first: Get rid of Fox news would be number one on the list. Then, scrub the internet clean. This is your mission, if you wish to be perceived as persecuted and oppressed. Good luck. This tape will self destruct in 5 seconds.

“They hate Trump,” he said. “What is this? This is not a normal spirit. This is not a normal hate. This is that spirit of the First Horse of the Apocalypse, which is riding now. It’s the spirit of hatred that’s taking over America and life and death is in the power of the tongue.”

Oh, you Christians are the specialists in hate. Most of the rest of us can’t be bothered to expend that sort of energy. I don’t hate the Tiny Tyrant. I don’t know him well enough for that. I find him disgusting, disturbingly narcissistic, incompetent to the nth degree, and remarkably devoid of skill and talent, yes. I definitely want the Volatile Clown kicked out of the political circus. After that, I don’t care what he does, just like I didn’t care before.  As for a spirit of hatred, mmm, with hateful bigots, neoNazis, and fascists all pouring out of the woodwork in support of their wannabe dictator, that’s a fair enough statement. You’re just misplacing the source of the hate.

As for power of the tongue, yes, words are indeed powerful. That would be why you should actually be more focused on not spreading hatred; and why you should pay attention when those words turn critical.

Via RWW, the video is there.

Kicking Kirchmeier.

Oceti Sakowin Camp. © C. Ford, all rights reserved.

There’s a petition, and yes, I know people get petition tired, but please click on over and sign this one, to remove the murder-minded and incompetent Kirchmeier from his position as Sheriff of Morton County. Kirchmeier took a brutal stance from the beginning, and as some of you will recall from the Standing Rock posts, he spread misinformation and outright lies from the beginning, and never stopped telling lies, either. He used all the climate justice warriors as an excuse to spend outrageous amounts of money on military equipment, so he could play a latter day Custer, obviously hoping for better results. In the end, his unholy alliance with the oil companies worked out just fine for him, giving him equipment to oppress and harm, all while lining his pockets. Please help out by adding your name to the petition.
 
Remove Sheriff Kyle Kirchmeier, of the Morton County Sheriff’s Office.

Catering to the Tiny Tantrum Tyrant.

Trump. AP News.

Oh dear. The Unprez’s trip is looming, and world leaders are all busy lining up favourite foods, padding playpens, and doing power point slides on how to handle the Tiny Tyrant. The mocking by the Twitterati has been merciless, and deservedly so. These are obviously not preparations for a visit by an adult, let alone the supposed president of a company country.  [My Freudian Slip is showing.] These are preparations for a cranky toddler, ever on the verge of a full meltdown tantrum. AP and NYT have stories about these preparations, if you feel like being gobsmacked this day, with a side helping of near-fatal eyerolls.

WASHINGTON (AP) — When President Donald Trump sits down for dinner in Saudi Arabia, caterers have ensured that his favorite meal – steak with a side of ketchup – will be offered alongside the traditional local cuisine.

At NATO and the Group of 7 summits, foreign delegations have gotten word that the new U.S. president prefers short presentations and lots of visual aids. And at all of Trump’s five stops on his first overseas trip, his team has spent weeks trying to build daily downtime into his otherwise jam-packed schedule.

It’s all part of a worldwide effort to accommodate America’s homebody president on a voyage with increasingly raised stakes given the ballooning controversy involving his campaign’s possible ties to Russia. For a former international businessman, Trump simply doesn’t have an affinity for much international.

Even before Trump’s trip morphed from a quick jaunt to Europe into a nine-day behemoth, White House aides were on edge about how the president would take to grueling pressures of foreign travel: the time zone changes, the unfamiliar hotels, the local delicacies. Two officials said they feared that a difficult trip might even lead the president to hand off future traveling duties to Vice President Mike Pence.

From the AP article.

After four months of interactions between Mr. Trump and his counterparts, foreign officials and their Washington consultants say certain rules have emerged: Keep it short — no 30-minute monologue for a 30-second attention span. Do not assume he knows the history of the country or its major points of contention. Compliment him on his Electoral College victory. Contrast him favorably with President Barack Obama. Do not get hung up on whatever was said during the campaign. Stay in regular touch. Do not go in with a shopping list but bring some sort of deal he can call a victory.

“If you were prepping people for Donald Trump, the two or three points would be: one, bear in mind this is still a guy who focuses on wins,” Peter Westmacott, a former British ambassador to the United States, said. “He likes to have wins for America and wins for himself from bilateral meetings.”

“Secondly,” he continued, “he is a deal maker, a pragmatist. Third, this is a guy with a limited attention span. He absolutely won’t want to listen to visitors droning on for a half-hour — or longer if they need an interpreter.”

From the NYT.

“I don’t mean to belabor this comparison but these are literally tips for managing toddlers.”

“@AP @POTUS brings the world together in an international babysitting effort.”

Raw Story has some of the choice tweets on the issue.

Sheriff David Clarke Gets His Trump Appointment.

Sheriff David Clarke Jr. CREDIT: AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin.

I’m sure that Dave Clarke is just giddy over being appointed to homeland security. For the rest of us, it’s a walking, talking, nightmare. No one could possibly be less qualified than Clarke, whose hatred knows no bounds. Many times over, this man should have been tried for his crimes, and if there was any justice, he’d be sitting in a prison cell for the rest of his life.  He’s in the midst of a prison deaths scandal right now, but apparently, that doesn’t matter, anymore than his previous crimes. This is just the tip of the Clarke iceberg:

Clarke has called the Black Lives Matter movement “black slime” that “needs to be eradicated from the American society and the American culture,” “garbage” and a “subversive movement” that seeks to overthrow the government, and said that the movement is driven by “an ideology of victimhood with a list of grievances that do not exist.” He has dismissed concerns about police brutality by saying that “black criminal abuse, black criminal brutality” is “the real brutality going on in the United States.” The real problem in “the American ghetto,” he has said, is “modern liberalism.”

Clarke said that Michael Brown, the black teenager shot by police in Ferguson, Missouri, was a “co-conspirator in his own demise” because he “chose thug life.” After Sandra Bland, a black woman who had been thrown to the ground during a traffic stop, died in police custody, Clarke went on Fox News to chastise her. He said that he would have used even more force against a group of black teenagers who were thrown to the ground by police outside a public swimming pool in Ohio, telling people who saw a racial component in the action to “shut up already.”

Clarke has been colorful in his condemnation of President Obama and Hillary Clinton for sympathizing with the Black Lives Matter movement, calling them “straight-up cop haters.” He called Obama a “heartless, soulless bastard” for speaking up about “goons” killed by police and said that the Obama administration’s attempts to address racial disparities in policing were a plot to “emasculate the police” in order to impose dictatorial control.” He accused the president of worsening racial divides in the country by pitting “whites against blacks” and “Hispanics against Americans.”

The sheriff is also happy to throw red meat to his conservative audience on a number of other topics. After the Supreme Court struck down state marriage equality bans, Clarke called for a “revolution” to “get this country back,” complete with “pitchforks and torches,” urging his audience to launch a standoff against the federal government the next time a bakery or the like is fined for refusing business to a same-sex couple.

When Trump caused a national uproar when he attacked a judge because of his Mexican-American heritage, Clarke took to his radio show to defend the candidate.

Clarke first became a conservative hero when, in 2013, he aired radio ads in his county urging citizens not to rely on calling 911 but instead to learn to protect themselves against crime. Speaking at the National Rifle Association’s convention last year, he proposed adding a semi-automatic rifle to the Great Seal of the United States. Appearing on conspiracy theorist Alex Jones’ radio program, Clarke warned that a renewal of the federal assault weapons ban would lead to gun confiscations that would spark “the second coming of the American Revolution, the likes of which would make the first revolution pale by comparison.”

While Clarke has no patience for African Americans who have deadly run-ins with the police, he has repeatedly associated himself with anti-government militia groups who have staged armed standoffs with federal government agents or who threaten to defy federal law. Earlier this year, when a group of armed activists took over a federal wildlife refuge in Oregon, Clarke backed their cause, saying that the country had reached a “pitchforks and torches moment” that couldn’t be solved by an election.

In 2013, after he aired his ads discouraging citizens from relying on 911, Clarke accepted the “ Constitutional Sheriff of the Year” award from the Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association, an anti-government group that promotes the idea that county sheriffs are the highest law enforcement officers in the country and thus have the power to defy federal laws that they believe are unconstitutional. In his acceptance speech , Clarke declared that “government” was the “common enemy” of the “patriots” in the room. In a radio interview that year, he said that “on an everyday basis, to me, federal government is a bigger threat” than terrorism.

Just this year, Clarke spoke at a fundraising event for the New York chapter of the Oath Keepers, an anti-government group aligned with the Constitutional Sheriffs that urges law enforcement officers and military personnel to defy laws they believe are unconstitutional and encourages its members to form militias ready to defy an out-of-control federal government. At that event, Clarke called Black Lives Matter a “hate group” and vowed to do “everything I can” to get Trump elected president.

Via RWW, click on over for the full story.

Also see: Why Sheriff Clarke will be a disaster in his new job, according to his predecessor: ‘Just plain awful’.

Fear! They Must Fear!

Tucker Viemeister.

Conservative allies are now poking and pushing the Tiny Tyrant to indulge in more firings, because naturally, the fault of the current mess lies with them! And them! Oh, and them too! One GOP operative even managed to blurt out a tiny bit of conservatruth, the importance of fear, because what good is a regime without that?

President Trump’s allies are pushing him to make drastic changes as the White House deals with persistent leaks and a communications strategy they believe has spun out of control.

There is a broad sense among Trump’s media boosters and early supporters that his staff is failing him, beginning with chief of staff Reince Priebus and extending to press secretary Sean Spicer, whose job security has been the subject of endless speculation.

Now, some of the most influential figures in conservative media are openly auditioning for Spicer’s job, calling for the ouster of communications director Mike Dubke or pushing the White House to fight back against the media by ending press briefings altogether.

Some of those measures — in particular the measure to freeze out the press — are catching on among Trump’s conservative base.

“I have always been against the White House doing daily press briefings and agree that an overhaul of how the communications team deals with the media is in order,” said Mark Meckler, cofounder of the Tea Party Patriots. “We are dealing with a media that is, by and large, hostile to conservatives, hostile to Republicans, hostile to ideas of limited government, fiscal responsibility and constitutionalism, and certainly hostile to this president. So the president and his staff should act accordingly.”

Why yes, of course, people being generally hostile to such ideas, that has nothing at all to do with ideas, no. Instead, stomping all over media and attempting to restrict information, that’s the ticket, yeah!

Hannity accused reporters of seeking publicity for themselves through public combat with the White House.

He said the White House should strike back by having reporters submit questions in writing, “giving the White House time to respond with clarity and specificity.” Following that, Spicer or deputy press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders could then take a handful of questions from reporters on prearranged topics, Hannity said.

“If the White House follows this plan, I think the destroy-Trump propaganda media will have a much harder time misrepresenting the Trump administration positions and you, the American people, will be better served,” he said.

Oh my, just look at that radiating pile of wrong. We certainly wouldn’t want a president and spokespeople who were capable of actually thinking before talking, no, that would be bad. Instead, we’ll quash media by treating them like naughty kindergartners. Trump administration positions are not being misrepresented. They are being represented, which is why you’re all in such a stew. Can you imagine the reaction if anyone suggested such a plan with an earlier president? The cries of “Unamerican!” would roll like thunder across the land. As for being better served, count me out on being an American people.

Trump’s allies blame the uproar on a failure of Trump’s chief of staff to assert authority inside a White House bitten by daily leaks to the press that paint a chaotic and unflattering picture of the president.

“It all comes back to the chief of staff,” said one GOP operative with close ties to the White House.

“Nobody respects him; nobody is afraid of him,” the operative said of Priebus. “You need someone in there who makes people feel their career in Washington would be ruined by running afoul of the president.”

Ah, and there we have it, the core attitude of the Plutocrat Party™.  Fear! Fear is the key. Sounds Regime to me.

The Hill has the full story.