Posts Tagged ‘politics’

GOP Space Alien Abduction Survivor Runs for Congress in Florida

October 17, 2017

GOP Space Alien Abduction Survivor Runs for Congress in Florida

Republican Bettina Rodriguez Aguilera, a former Doral city council member, is running for the House seat of retiring Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen. Ms. Rodriguez Aguilera is uniquely qualified to represent the Sunshine State, as she has secret knowledge telepathically transmitted to her by the tall blond-haired space aliens who took her aboard their spaceship when she was 7 years old.

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Donald Trump, Hat-Salesman-In-Chief

September 5, 2017

Donald Trump, Hat-Salesman-In-Chief

President Trump visited storm-wracked, flood-ravaged Texas last Tuesday and offered victims these heartfelt words of comfort: “What a crowd. What a turnout!” He was accompanied by the current Mrs. Trump, easily identified by her five-inch heels and a black baseball cap helpfully labeled “FLOTUS.” If you want to buy Melania’s disaster-zone garb, the snakeskin Manolo Blahnik stilettos will set you back $600, and you’ll have to settle for a knock-off FLOTUS cap.

But you can get her husband’s hurricane hat, an Official 45th President “U-S-A” cap, by forking over $40 to the Donald Trump Re-Election Campaign. That’s right, 7 months into his first do-nothing term, Mr. Trump is already flogging hats to fashion-forward fans to fund his 2020 run. After all, that’s how he funded his 2016 campaign, remember?

President Trump and the missus got such bad press from Tuesday’s Texas stumble that they had a do-over on Saturday. Another chance to advertise the family head-wear business.

More:

“How President Trump turned hurricane relief into product placement for campaign swag,” Jordan Libowitz, Washington Post

“Trump’s ‘USA’ Hat Criticized by Ethics Group and Those Who Don’t Like Ugly Hats,” Adam K. Raymond, New York Magazine

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Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Ben Carson at HUD: Demolition By Neglect

August 25, 2017

Ben Carson at HUD: Demolition By Neglect

Retired neurosurgeon and noted pyramid expert Ben Carson, President Trump’s Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, has a perfect record at HUD — he’s done absolutely nothing. Perhaps he thinks U.S. cities already have enough affordable housing and healthy economies. HUD is also charged with enforcing the Fair Housing Act, which Dr. Carson has diagnosed as “communist.”

But President Trump isn’t making Dr. Carson run HUD all by himself. He’s appointed Eric Trump’s wedding planner to run the federal housing office in New York City. Coincidentally, Donald Trump himself is part-owner of Brooklyn’s Starrett City, the nation’s largest subsidized housing complex, which earns him millions.

More:

“Ben Carson is dangerous for HUD. He got the job anyway because Trump has normalized incompetence,” Jumaane D. Williams, Quartz

Related:

“The impact of income inequality on rental affordability: An empirical study in large American metropolitan areas,” Hongwei Dong, Urban Studies

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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Scaramucci Media Tour

August 10, 2017

Scaramucci Media Tour
Anthony Scaramucci, the Wall Street sleaze employed as a temp worker in the Trump White House, will be interviewed on Sunday by George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s This Week and on Monday by Stephen Colbert on CBS’s Late Show with Stephen Colbert. While the Colbert appearance might be more amusing, the Mooch, who was President Trump’s Communications Director for 10 days, has something in common with Stephanopoulos, President Clinton’s Communications Director for a whopping 138 days.

As we know from The New Yorker‘s Ryan Lizza, Mr. Scaramucci gives one hell of an interview.

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Exhausted By Epic Inaction, Congress Takes a Vacation

August 8, 2017

Exhausted By Epic Inaction, Congress Takes a Vacation
The U.S. Congress is on vacation until after Labor Day, but given its lack of accomplishments, it could have been in recess for the preceding year. Of course, Congress typically spends three days a week in DC even when it’s in session, spending the other four back home collecting campaign funds for the next election, a practice euphemistically called “meeting with constituents.”

But summer recess isn’t all stump speeches and visits to examine vital NATO defenses on the Riviera. Congress will still be hard at work tweeting about the highlights of rubber chicken luncheons at the Rotary Club. We hope our legislators don’t over-exert their Twitter fingers this month. They’ll have just a few days in September to decide on the nation budget, the debt limit, and tax reform, and to keep the White House from crashing the health care system or stumbling into trade war or a military crisis.

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Tuckered From Tweeting, Trump Takes a Vacation

August 7, 2017

Tuckered From Tweeting, Trump Takes a Vacation

On Friday President Trump, the man who said he’d be too busy to take vacations, started a 17-day vacation at his golf resort in New Jersey.

Donald Trump has taken 42 golf outings to date during the first 6 months of his presidency.  Taxpayers recently covered $41 million in security costs for New Jersey’s Trump National Bedminster resort.

In other news, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway called special counsel Robert Mueller’s Trump-Russia investigation a “fishing expedition.” Russian President Vladimir Putin immediately went to Siberia’s Lake Baikal, took off his shirt, and picked up his fishing rod.

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Moochy We Hardly Knew Ye

August 1, 2017

Moochy We Hardly Knew Ye
President Trump appointed Anthony “The Mooch” Scaramucci as his new Communications Director 12 days ago. A few days later the slick New York finance guy communicated to The New Yorker‘s Ryan Lizza by phone in an expletive-laced rant threatening other White House staff, especially Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, who soon resigned. Yesterday Anthony Scaramucci was fired by the new White House Chief of Staff, General John Kelly (Matt Taibbi had predicted this).

Mr. Scaramucci looks forward to spending more time with his … um, no.

Mrs. Scaramucci, 9 months pregnant, filed for divorce three weeks ago, citing her husband’s obsession with politics and Donald Trump as a factor contributing to their alienation. When she gave birth to his son last Monday, The Mooch was at the Boy Scout Jamboree in West Virginia with his true love, Donald Trump. In his defense, he did text his congratulations.

But don’t cry for The Mooch. He’s selling his 44% share in SkyBridge Capital, a move that will earn him $80 million. He’s selling the dubious outfit to a mysterious Chinese corporation.

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Donald Trump Jr.’s Russia Meeting: 8th Man Identified

July 18, 2017

The 8th participant in Donald Trump Jr.’s 2016 meeting with a Russian lawyer bearing campaign dirt on Hillary Clinton has been identified. He is Irakly “Ike” Kaveladze, a naturalized U.S. citizen and the California-based representative of Aras Agalarov, the “Russian Donald Trump.” Mr. Kavaladze is a vice president at the Agalarov family‘s Crocus Group real estate company. Earlier in his U.S. business career, Mr. Kavaladze was implicated in a $1.4 billion money-laundering operation.

According to his personal website:

“Ike Kaveladze’s responsibilities pertaining to Crocus’ international development projects include securing and structuring project investments, and negotiating with Chinese and other international contractors. One such project is the construction of the largest institution of higher education in Russia, Far Eastern Federal University in the Primorsky Krai (maritime province) capitol city of Vladivostok. Ike Kaveladze has engaged architects, engineers, designers, and decorators from the United States and elsewhere to work on the construction of the 8.4-million-square-meter campus and other Crocus endeavors across Russia.

Ike Kaveladze earned his undergraduate degree in economics and graduate degree in accounting at the Moscow Academy of Finance, prior to receiving his Master of Business Administration at the University of New Haven in Connecticut. Active with governments, businesses, and professionals on three continents, he is a member of the US-Russia Business Council and the Georgian Association in the United States of America, Inc.”

So the June 9, 2016 Trump Tower meeting was attended by Donald Trump Jr., his brother-in-law Jared Kushner, Paul Manafort (then Trump campaign manager), Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya, translator Anatoli Samochornov, Russian-American lobbyist Rinat Akhmetshin, music publicist Rob Goldstone, and Crocus Group representative Ike Kaveladze.

Video: Okay, Mr. Kavaladze was technically not the “8th man” at the meeting, he was the “8th person” (one attendee was a woman), but we couldn’t find any music for that.

More:

“Eighth person in Trump Tower meeting is identified,” Rosalind S. Helderman, Washington Post

“Mueller Probing Eighth Man from Trump Jr.’s Russia Meeting,” Daily Beast

Update:

“Russian man at Trump Jr meeting had partner with Soviet intelligence ties,” Jon Swaine, The Guardian 

Related:

“Was President at Trump Tower When Son Met Russian Lawyer?” John T. Bennett, Roll Call

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Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Donald Trump Jr., Cover Boy

July 17, 2017

“How bad is it?” asks David Von Drehle in Time magazine, the new issue with Donald Trump Jr. on the cover. Maybe Trump Sr. will put this cover on the walls of his golf course clubhouses.

Donny Junior’s Russian meeting is certainly a front page story, and as more information emerges, it just gets worse. Possible federal election law violation, conspiracy,  and obstruction of justice. That means full employment for Washington’s lawyers for the foreseeable future.

More:

“How Donald Trump Jr.’s Emails Have Cranked Up the Heat on His Family,” David Von Drehle, TIME

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John Oliver on Gerrymandering

June 22, 2017

The Rule of Law: He who rules makes the law. Legislators often reshape voting districts to keep their parties in political power. John Oliver explains.

Related:

“Why the Supreme Court’s decision to review Wisconsin’s gerrymandering is such a big deal,” Christopher Ingraham, Washington Post

“Gerrymandering Case Echoes in Inkblot-Like Districts Across the U.S.,” Michael Cooper, New York Times

“Where Gerrymandering Is Containing City Power,” Brentin Mock, CityLab

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Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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