Hispanic Evangelical Leaders: We Love You, Donald; Most Hispanics: Not So Much

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Trump Broke It, So He Owns It

The reason that Trump and the Republicans bore the blame for the government shutdown is simple: everyone knows who took the nation hostage. It's pretty fuckin' easy to figure out who the kidnapper is and who is the family of the victim. The kidnapper is the one who demands a ransom. A kidnapper doesn't demand to pay someone or he'll kill the hostage. That's not the way this shit work. So Trump wanted money for his wall in exchange for agreeing to reopen the government. Republicans were cool with it until shit started to fall apart. And Democrats, led by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, said no fuckin' way, terrorist.

So the majority of Americans, most of whom were never fooled by Donald fuckin' Trump, understood who the kidnapper was. And it was absurd when people like Rep. Steve "I Got Shot and It Made Even More of a Skeevy Son of a Bitch" Scalise said that Pelosi was holding the State of the Union speech "hostage." The government was closed and you're making a fuss because a giant orange baby won't get to have a hissy fit in front of the cameras? Fuck you.

Pelosi put on her stiletto pumps and stomped Trump's tiny scrotum. She stomped Mitch McConnell's saggy scrotum. She stomped Stephen Miller's bald scrotum. It was a scrotum-stomping-palooza, and no Republican sack went unstomped by Pelosi. You could see the look in the faces of the GOP, that look that they were no longer sure they had both their balls, after the shutdown agreement was made. 

Even now, Trump's pretty sure he ain't getting a goddamn wall/barrier/Lincoln log fence out of the Democrats. And the case for a national emergency is undone by Trump touting how secure the border is and the fact that, if it were a, you know, emergency, then by definition shit can't wait, yet we've waited.

Now, in the wake of the end of the shutdown, I'm sure Trump and the GOP are hoping everyone will forget that they were the ones who decided to shove 800,000 workers and the GDP off a cliff. But, as disgraced Secretary of State Colin Powell once warned about Iraq, the Pottery Barn rule says that if you break it, you brought it. It's mostly been used to refer to nations attacked in the worthless wars we've gotten into. But, pathetically, with Trump, it means the goddamned United States. 

Let's not get into how every single policy that comes out of this White House has fucked this country. Or how every judge that is rammed through the Senate is one more brick in a wall cutting us off from civil and other rights. No, just in terms of the 35-day government shutdown, Trump fucked the nation even more and harder than he had already fucked it with the tax cut.

Start with the personal toll taken on the workers and government contractors (many of whom likely won't get paid). If you've ever lived paycheck to paycheck (and most of us have or do because, fuck, America), you know that anxiety, that sense of being unmoored, and there is no guarantee that Trump won't just do it again for shits and giggles and because Ann Coulter no longer masturbates furiously, savagely, painfully to his photo. Plus, workers likely racked up a bunch of credit card debt, probably more than a few payday loans, and that's interest that's gonna haunt them for a long time. Stress and debt, stress and debt, motherfuckers, the American way. And let's not leave out the businesses that rely on government workers to survive. They've gotta play catch-up, too, without getting back pay.

The backlog of work for the federal government is insane. From the literally millions of pieces of mail that the IRS needs to open (including something from yours truly) to delayed USDA home loans to the damage to national parks (it may take the Joshua Tree National Park 300 years- yeah, that's right - to recover from the fuckin' yahoos who knocked down the fuckin' Joshua Trees there and they fuckin' poached herons from the Everglades) to the amount of research that was hindered and will be hindered by a mountain of grant applications and other shit that needs to be processed or shitcanned to the wildfires that will happen because the shutdown happened during the main brush-clearing season. Every agency that was shutdown now is behind on work that most of them were already behind on. And who the fuck is gonna want to work for the government if they think at the whim of a maniac they can be forced to go without a paycheck for a month? Good luck with recruitment.

This is why a business mogul should never be president. The government ain't a corporation. The government ain't responsible for maximizing the profits of a few. It's gotta keep working in order to make life better for the most people, ideally. And when you try to make a deal, there are lives, not just wallets, at stake. If you don't understand (or care) about the difference, get the fuck out of government.

It's a goddamned fiasco. Trump has broken the country. And as much as he blames pretty much every president who came before him, a big majority of Americans seem to know who really bumblefucked into the shelves and wrecked the joint.


Trump Is Pretty Much Just Trying to Murder Americans at This Point

Let's see what we've got here:

The rate of uninsured adults has climbed by nearly 3 percentage points since Donald Trump started destroying the Affordable Care Act. That adds up to 7 million more Americans without health insurance. Young people, poor people, and women (and, probably, young, poor women) make up the biggest groups of those who have either chosen to forgo insurance coverage or can't afford it and are in that hideous sweet spot between qualifying for subsidies and qualifying for Medicaid in states that didn't expand the government insurance. In fact, we're heading back to the level things were before the full implementation of the ACA. And we know that lack of insurance leads to more illness and more death. Implementing policies that prevent or discourage people from getting insurance will kill Americans.

The shutdown is making airports and air travel more dangerous for everyone; prison guards at federal penitentiaries are calling in sick at high numbers, making those places more dangerous for the prisoners and the staff; the FBI has stated clearly that investigations are being impeded by lack of funding, including ongoing ones into the MS-13 gang, which, as we've heard, is pretty much going to take over the country; working without pay is going to affect the readiness of things like the Coast Guard because it's pretty damn stressful to not be able to feed your family; people who rely on SNAP for food will be facing those funds being dry next month and food pantries are already stretched thin because of all the unpaid government workers that are using them; and so much more. Essentially, by refusing to re-open the government unless he gets a wall, Trump is literally making this country more unsafe and deadly than the phantom terrorists in a 1000 caravans.

But it keeps going.

The Trump administration changed the definition of "domestic violence" so that it is only "felony or misdemeanor crimes of violence." Under President Obama, it included "a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner." In other words, now, if a woman is a victim of psychological abuse or some other kind of non-physical abuse, services that used to be available to that woman through the federal government may no longer be available. It may also mean fewer women come forward to say they are victims before the physical violence starts.

The Trump administration wants to reclassify some high-level radioactive waste as low-level so that the government doesn't need to spend as much securing it and cleaning it up. Meanwhile, as an epidemic of black lung disease has been revealed in the miners of Appalachia, a terrible situation that goes back before this presidency, the Trump administration wants to roll back more regulations that will affect the safety of miners and, really, everyone, as it allows the release of mercury, arsenic, and other poisons into the air and water. I may be just a simple city blogger, but I'm pretty sure that more radioactive waste in the ground and more mercury in the air are bad for you.

In other words, at this point, it's hard to think that Donald Trump, his administration, and, indeed, all the Republicans who go along with this (and the few awful Democrats who may - lookin' at you, Manchin) don't just want to kill as many Americans as possible while they're in office. We're not just trying to get a terrible president out of there. We're hoping to save our lives.


Random Observations on Some Racist Dipshit Kids and All of Us

1. Fuck you if you're watching the videos of students from Covington Catholic School hooting and yelling and chanting and dancing in their douchewear of MAGA hats and Trump shirts and you think, "Oh, this is totally innocent and not racist." And double fuck you in your mouth and your ass if you look at images and videos of very white Nick Sandmann standing and smirking in front of very Native American Nathan Phillips and believe, as Sandmann's parents' hired guns wrote for Sandmann, "I said a silent prayer that the situation would not get out of hand." Bullshit. Anyone who has ever been around a group of young white dipshit males has seen that fuckin' smirk, that face that says, "You wouldn't touch me because I'm white and I got a group of angry white boys around me who are pissed off that they missed the era of lynching." Jesus, it must have been frightening to be surrounded by those howling pissants in their MAGA gang colors.

1a. The one thing I'll give the forensic videologists of the right is that I never clearly heard the racist dipshit kids chant, "Build the wall." They may have. They may not have. I'm just saying I didn't hear it. Update: I watched another video, the one where the kid (whose name is probably Squee) rips his shirt off, and they are definitely chanting, "Donald Trump" for a couple of moments.

1b. Don't fuckin' tell me to "Watch the video of the whole thing." Motherfuckers, I did watch it. And it shows exactly what it looks like: a bunch of privileged white Christian boys getting off first on confronting some black people (the Hebrew Israelites are fuckin' assholes) and then on confronting some Injuns. They likely thought they'd finally get a hug from their MAGA fathers for doing it. Hell, they were probably gonna circle jerk about how brave they were for months after. Probably still will. While a Trump speech is playing on their phones.

1c. Teenagers know that everything...every fucking thing...will be recorded. They love it. They want it. They want to see how the stupid shit they do gets major likes and hearts and whatever the fuck. That's also what Sandmann was thinking standing there, knowing that his boys were recording. "Holy shit, this is gonna be so sick on my Insta." The old person argument of "I could do stupid things when I was a teenager and no one would ever see it" is bullshit because today's kids expect to be recorded. They do the stupid shit because they want it recorded.

2. As a liberal, I think the way that teenagers of color are treated by our American justice system, our American culture, and our American politicians is fucking disgusting. It is a savage fucking country that arrests kids and tries them in court as adults and talks about them like they are grown ups and not bundles of hormones whose brains haven't fully developed. It's a savage fucking country that lets kids live in abject poverty and does almost nothing to help them get out and then punishes them when they step even a little out of line, like acting up in school. All of this need to change, be reformed, overturned, anything. We have failed our kids miserably in so many ways.

2a. If you're conservative and you're pissed off at all the people on the left who are condemning the Covington Catholic dipshits, saying that they're just kids and are making stupid kid mistakes, I wonder how you'd've reacted if it had been a group of African American teen boys who just came from a Black Lives Matter march and were smirking at and mocking a white minister singing, "Amazing Grace"? Fuck you. You know what you would've said. You'd've been calling for them to be castrated and sent to the fields. Yet now you act like the public outrage at the dipshits makes them the moral equivalent of unarmed black teens shot by the police.

2b. The right also viciously attacked the Parkland teens for daring to speak out about gun control. When they planned a national school walkout for students, conservatives lost their goddamned minds. "They're being manipulated by adults," they said. "They're just being exploited." Yet somehow when you arrange for groups of Catholic school kids to go march against abortion rights, that's not exploitative. Weird, huh?

2c. If you're liberal and you want the racist dipshits treated like non-white kids are treated in America, well, sorry, but that's just fuckin' hypocritical. I don't want the racist dipshits gunned down by cops or sent to prison for absurdly long sentences or anything like that. I don't want that to happen to any teenagers. I do want the entire goddamn country to get back to the idea that all kids are kids, and, except in exceedingly rare cases, they should be treated as such. That's not a way to excuse the racist dipshits from Kentucky. But it is to say that our reaction to all teen dipshittery, criminal or not, should be contextualized by the fact that they are still kids. (And if you think sending death threats to the school or the kids is right, you can go fuck yourself.)

2d. To get super-harsh here, when teens are gunned down in a school or are the victims of some other crime, we are quick to label them as "children." Well, why do teen victims get to be innocent children while teen criminals get to be adults?

2e. Yeah, the dipshits deserve to be punished by their school and, if a crime was committed, charged with it. Of course. That's obvious. But punish them as kids, as we should all kids.

3. The dipshits have shitty parents, shitty teachers, and shitty religious leaders. They all have failed. The chaperones on the trip failed. The adults failed. They should be punished. They should be fired if they are at the school. Too bad we can't fire parents. The adults close to these kids are gonna fuck it all up. They already are.

4. Nathan Phillips has actually been incredibly insightful about the whole situation. In an interview with the Cincinnati Enquirer, he said, "I'm disappointed with [Sandmann's] statement. He didn't accept any responsibility. That lack of responsibility, I don't accept it." All he wants is for the dipshits to accept that they were dipshits. That's where learning begins. "I'm just working for a better future for all of our children," he said. "But, I can't work with liars and thieves." And, in one of those so-wise-it's-almost-a-stereotype moments, he added, "I live in the plains and I've watched a tornado come down. It's very destructive. What I saw in front of me that day was destruction from a terrible storm tearing apart the fabric of my America and threatening the future of all our children."  He now wants to meet with the dipshits and try to teach them what they did was wrong, in case they don't understand that simple fact. Maybe he can tell them what the Indigenous Peoples March was for, too.

4a. Yeah, he's not a Vietnam War vet, although he did serve in the Marines. Well done, right-wing media. So? Does that mean Phillips deserves the treatment he received? Assholes.

5. Just shut the fuck up, David Brooks.


Martin Luther King Would Fuck Trump's Shit Up (2019 Edition)

Yesterday, Vice President Mike Pence, who looks like a man trying to piss in front of other men but is so flustered by seeing strange dicks that he can't even squeeze out a drop, dared to compare Donald Trump to Martin Luther King, Jr. King, Pence said, "inspired us to change through the legislative process, to become a more perfect union. That’s exactly what President Trump is calling on Congress to do."

The fact that King's zombie corpse didn't rise up and skullfuck Pence immediately is a tribute to the civil rights leader's dedication to non-violence, even from beyond the grave.

Every MLK Day we have to endure conservatives trying to shove a round King peg into their square hole. Every year, it's the same bullshit that completely ignores that King would have been an enemy to both Democrats and Republicans because, see, by the end of his life, he had shifted his attention to rights for the poor and working class of all colors, and he alienated a whole lot of his political allies by outright opposing the Vietnam War and, of course, Lyndon Johnson's complicity in waging it. King would fuck everybody's shit up when it comes to the eternal war we are fighting now.

His dedication to the poverty-stricken in this country came about, in part, because of his relationship with Highlander Folk School in east Tennessee and its founder, Myles Horton. Highlander was started as a school for rural workers and worked with civil rights groups starting in the 1950s, training black and white protesters to become leaders in the movement. It was one of the first integrated schools in the region.

King spoke at the 25th anniversary of the school in 1957 at Horton's invitation. His topic was "A Look to the Future," and he began by looking back at the nation's past. King placed the country in 1957 in what he saw as a third period in the history of race relations, after the age of slavery and the age of Jim Crow. He dated this third period as having begun just a three years earlier, with the Supreme Court's Brown v. Board of Education decision that desegregated schools and undid the separate-but-equal doctrine.

In the road to progress, King saw those groups that wanted to block the path: "The past three years have witnessed the birth in the South of the U.S. Knights of the Ku Klux Klan. Almost dead for more than two decades, the Klan has staged a new revival. This organization is determined to preserve segregation at any cost; its methods are crude and criminal. Unlike the Klan of twenty years ago, this new Klan does not list among its members the so-called respectable people. It draws its members from the undereducated and underprivileged groups who see in the Negro's rising status a political and economic threat. And although the Klan will never regain the power that it once possessed, we must not take it lightly. Beneath the surface of all of its actions is the ugly theme of unleashed, unchallenged racial and religious bigotry. There is always the implied threat of violence."

White Citizens Councils were also asserting racist power to defy the Supreme Court and keep segregation. King said of them, "Since they operate on a higher political and economic level than the Klan, a halo of respectability hovers over them." They used "legal maneuvers" to nullify the Court, and also "their methods range from threats and intimidation to economic reprisals against Negro men and women. These methods also extend to white persons who will dare to take a stand for justice. They demand absolute conformity from whites and abject submission from Negroes."

While the KKK and White Citizens Councils were oppressing those who fought for freedom, King also talked about the great mass of people who were working to foster desegregation. "While the reactionary guardians of the status quo are busy crying 'Never,'" King asserted, "the system of segregation is crumbling all around them."

As for the future, King was cautiously optimistic. In a line that could describe the MAGA hordes, King said, "Many of the southerners who oppose integration believe with utter devoutness that what they do is best for themselves, their families, and their nation. This quality of sincerity makes the job of desegregation infinitely more difficult." That last sentence has stuck with me ever since I read it a few years ago.

However, in a complete rebuke of those sincere racists, King declared, "But in spite of all of this, the opponents of desegregation are fighting a losing battle. The Old South is gone, never to return again. Many of the problems that we are confronting in the South today grow out of the futile attempt of the white South to perpetuate a system of human values that came into being under a feudalistic plantation system which cannot survive in a day of democratic equalitarianism. Yes, the Old South is a lost cause."

Martin Luther King would fuck Trump's shit up because he knew that you can never make America great again. The very implication of that phrase is to justify and validate all the hatred and bigotry and violence that was part of that time they wish to return to. It's nonsense, anyway, because you can only progress. You might try to slow it down. You might even block it for a little while. But progress will happen, whether you like it or not.

The future was dependent on labor unions, the growing economic power of African Americans, as well as their determination to end segregations, and the federal courts, King said. Yeah, another reason that conservatives need to shut the fuck up about King is that he wanted the courts to make laws. "Federal court decrees have altered transportation patterns, educational mores, use of golf courses, and a myriad of other matters," he explained. "These major social changes have a cumulative force conditioning other segments of life."

By the way, in the audience at Highlander Folk School (now the Highlander Research and Education) was Rosa Parks. King had come from Montgomery, Alabama, where he was leading the bus boycott that Parks had helped instigate.  They just wanted to make America America. Greatness to be determined.


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Latest Trump Defense: He's Just an Ignorant Boob

Twice this week, an odd defense was offered for the rank incompetence and blatant criminality of President Donald Trump, who is just an engorged slug that thinks a long tie makes him look less obese (it doesn't). Not surprisingly, that defense rested on something that would be hard to deny, that Trump is an oblivious ignoramus who doesn't even really give a shit about what's going on around him.

In his upcoming book, I'm Finished, disgraced Trump lackey and terrible former governor, Chris Christie, is brutally honest about all the people who dicked him over when he wanted to be Vice President or Attorney General. Trump did offer Christie the position of "special assistant to the president in the White House," or "ball-washer," and, to his credit, Christie declined. But of the people surrounding Trump, including his miserable cockmite of a son-in-law, Christie writes that they're a "revolving door of deeply flawed individuals — amateurs, grifters, weaklings, convicted and unconvicted felons." And on many occasions, "the president was ill served by poor advice." As for Trump himself? Christie is nearly worshipful: "The president is utterly fearless and a unique communicator, Christie writes – and his main flaw is that he speaks on impulse and surrounds himself with people he should not trust."

If all you hire are idiots, motherfuckers, and assholes, then that's because you are some combination of those. And if you don't recognize when your family members are too goddamn naive to do a job, that's on you. But Christie's defense of Trump here is something along the lines that he's just a good-hearted boob who didn't realize who he was putting in his administration. The truth is that he wants lickspittles to nuzzle up to his man-tits and suckle there. Whether they are criminals or naifs doesn't matter as long as the drink his orange milk. (Note: my brain is not a happy place.)

Speaking of criminals, Trump attorney and monster in a silent horror movie, Rudy Giuliani, went on CNN last night and really said, "I never said there was no collusion between the campaign or between people in the campaign [with Russia]. I said the president of the United States." Giuliani walked it back a bit today, saying, "There was no collusion by President Trump in any way, shape or form. Likewise, I have no knowledge of any collusion by any of the thousands of people who worked on the campaign." And, because no statement involving Trump and/or Giuliani can ever be devoid of abject dickishness, he added (really), "The only knowledge I have in this regard is the collusion of the Clinton campaign with Russia, which has so far been ignored," which would weirdly mean that Hillary Clinton had the Russians hack her campaign and party, and, well, no.

Again, the defense of Trump here is ignorance. Overbite McForehead is right that Trump cannot possibly know what every single campaign worker did. (And that would go for Clinton, too, but fuck her, right?) Surely, it might be possible that Jesse Magaface, who was paid for putting up Trump signs in Cousin Fuck, Alabama, coordinated with Russian hackers to steal emails from the DNC. But, you know, we also have Paul fuckin' Manafort, who was the campaign manager, giving info to Russia.

It's weird, you know. Of all the people Trump could have hired, a whole bunch of them seem to have connections to Russia or Russian oligarchs or Russia-supporting Ukrainians. The odds of that happening without actively seeking people with those connections are pretty fuckin' astronomical.

But let's say that Christie and Giuliani are right: that poor Donald Trump has just been bumblefucking along since 2015, blind to all the treachery and chicanery that went on in his name. If we're saying that, then we're implying that he just doesn't give a damn and has left hiring decisions to his terrible children and his skeevy little worm of a son-in-law, that he just wants to play president because he gets off on the attention. So then every crisis, every failure, every harm that has been done by the desperate fools and grifters around him has been to serve his bloated ego.

And yet even that doesn't let him off the hook. The FBI wants to take down a mob boss not because he himself has committed the worst crimes but because he has made it possible for them to be committed. The Trump campaign and the Trump administration all lead to one person, even if he pleads that he is just a credulous, manipulated dotard.

More likely, though, Trump knows exactly what's been going on and he fuckin' loves it.

(Update: This post previously had a joke title of Chris Christie's book that apparently had already been made on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. So it was changed because I'd rather have my own goddamn joke there.)


Let Us Pause to Appreciate Just How Batshit Insane Trump's Speech on Monday Was

We've become numb to the shitstream of babbling insanity that flows from the mouth of Donald Trump and into the anxious ears of his demented fanatics. However, whenever we think that he can't go any lower, stupider, crasser, or crazier, he always pushes that line below sea level, to the point where I think it's gone through the other side of the earth and is heading into space. But our general reaction to something like the Fast Food Feast he force-fed the Clemson football team has a predictable arc, from "What the fuck? Are you fucking kidding me?" to "Goddamn, this is so fucking embarrassing" to "Well, now that I think about it, did I expect that fucker to do anything else?"

Still, Trump's speech Monday at the American Farm Bureau Federation convention in New Orleans was epically nuts, even by Trump standards.

Here he is right after getting laughter for mocking the media, veering into horror: "Women and children are being ruthlessly exploited at our southern border by vicious coyotes -- who would think of this? Human traffickers. Now, when you hear the words 'human traffickers,' you think about 1,000 years ago, 2,000 years ago." Yes, I know. 160 years ago, tops. I know, although most of us probably have no issue using the phrase "human traffickers" for, say, Russian mobsters.

And then shit got weird. Like spooky weird. "And they come in through our southern border into our country. And they'll have women taped -- their mouths with duct tape, with electrical tape," the President of the United States, the leader of the free world, the head of the greatestest country in the history of the universe or whatever the fuck we say now, informed us. "They tape their face, their hair, their hands behind their back, their legs. They put them in the backseat of cars and vans, and they go -- they don't come in through your port of entry because you'd see them."

I'd like to think that more than a few people in that audience thought, "The fuck does this pervy shit have to do with farms?" And maybe a few more thought, "I sure could use some seasonal workers. Is that how I'll have to get 'em now?"

Trump's dark vision of the nightmare everyone has lived until he came along continue as he described pre-Trump treatment of veterans. He said of people who work for the VA (I think - he's not real definite about his subjects), "For decades and decades, somebody could do anything they wanted. They can steal, they could abuse our veterans, they can be sadists, they can do whatever they want and you couldn't fire them." It's not true, but, how much does this man think about how sadistic people can be?

Then, after seeming to be done talking about the wall and immigration and having moved on to other subjects like vets and tax cuts, he went right back to talking about the wall and immigration. He answered those fantasy farmers by telling them about their field workers: "You need those -- you need people to help you with the farms. And I'm not going to rule that out. I'm going to make that easier for them to come in and to work the farms. You've had some people for 20, 25 years. They're incredible. Then they go home and they can't get back in. That's not going to happen." He offered no real plan except "For the people that work the farms, that have been here, that have gone through this very short but good process, that are going to help our country, it's going to be easier for them to get in that what they have to go through now." And he assured them, "I know a lot about the farming world," which is such a blatant lie that God should have dropped a tractor on him. Except there is no God, as we know now.

He seriously just kept going on fuckin' immigration, as if there is nothing else to talk about. He mocked asylum seekers, lying that only 2 percent come back for their court hearings. "And those people, you almost don't want, because they cannot be very smart," he said in his dickish way, mocking them for following the law.  "Two percent. Two percent. Two percent come back. Those two percent are not going to make America great again, that I can tell you." The motherfuckers in the audience laughed and clapped because fuck those immigrants who work your fields, right, Farmer Monsanto?

You think this stops? You think the cruelty and the savagery ever stops? Here he is describing when a man intentionally drove his car into people on a running path in New York City: " Hits a whole group of people purposely, screaming all sorts of things that they scream. And 8 people died; 12 or 13 were injured. Nobody talks about the injured. You know, some of the injured lost legs, lost arms. You know, this is -- they say, Oh, well, 12 were injured. You know, like, injured -- you think, like, a headache. No, no. They lost arms. They lost legs. One lost two legs. So 12 were horribly injured."

You know, President Obama should have described how the children were torn to pieces by bullets at Sandy Hook Elementary. Maybe that's how barbaric we need to be to make a point.

And he talked about his election victory in 2016. And, weirdly, how gas prices wouldn't have gone down if Hillary Clinton were president. And how terrible Democrats want open borders and crime and how they're to blame for the government shutdown he specifically took the blame for before it happened. And all the lies, so many lies, about people who cried when they talked to him, about Pakistanis being caught at the southern border, about every fucking thing, ranting like a street corner preacher about to have a stroke, all to applause and guffaws.

You'd think a bunch of farmers and farm industry people would know bullshit when they saw it. But I guess if you've been around it all the time, you can't tell when there's a turd in front of you.


Real Americans Are Hurting While Trump Wants to Stop Fantasy Immigrants

In Missoula, Montana, forest workers who have been furloughed during this, the longest partial government shutdown in our sordid history, held a yard sale this past weekend, offering their possessions at discount prices in order to make up for their absent paychecks. Right now, they should be getting firefighting equipment ready for the season, and they should be looking through applications for seasonal workers and then training them. But they can't. So they held a yard sale.

In a real twist on Donald Trump's priorities, in Montana, "the federal Office of Surface Mining’s Coal Information Management System has been put on hold, preventing the state from permitting new coal operations." That's right. Trump is dicking over coal, which he professes to love, as he professes to love so many things without knowing how to love anything.

Meanwhile, down the road a long ways, in Ogden, Utah, about 4000 workers have been furloughed between the Forest Service and big IRS office there. This has meant reduced patronage at Ogden's restaurants and stores, which means reduced sales tax revenue for the city, which means a reduction in services in the near future. One local diner noted a 58% drop in sales from the same time a year ago. And unemployment claims in Utah are surging.

In West Virginia, they're releasing food stamps benefits for February early because there's no guarantee the funding will be there for much longer. In Huntington, the Salvation Army is offering food and energy bill assistance to those impacted by the shutdown. Maybe even some clothes, if needed. Meanwhile, a federal worker in Morgantown is selling his possessions on Facebook for pennies on the dollar.

In Arizona and New Mexico and Alaska and elsewhere, health care for Native Americans has been affected, with 9000 workers at the Indian Health Service working without pay. Funding for education and social services, as well as maintenance of roads, has been halted, and it's stranding people and leaving them without much law enforcement.

This isn't a fucking game. The harm that Trump claims will come to the United States without his stupid wall is a fantasy. The very real harm that is being done to Americans, many in states that voted for Trump, needs to end. Whatever dumb fucking point Trump wanted to prove has failed. The assholes who think this proves the government is too big have failed to do so. People need their government to function.

On so many things, we are pushing people to the brink. Someone's gonna commit crimes to get the medications they need. Someone's gonna get killed because they don't want their kids to starve.  And it won't be an immigrant who does it. It might as well be Trump and the GOP with the gun in their filthy hands.


A Polite Note to Nervous Republicans: You Don't Have to Be Republican

Hey, there, Republicans in Congress,

The Rude Pundit here. I'm not gonna pretend I really give a damn about your futures, your souls, or your careers. But I don't wish physical harm on most of you, so listen for just a moment or two.

Right now, you're dealing with some big deal shit here just from this weekend: Trump was (and likely still is) the subject of a counterintelligence investigation by the FBI for possibly working with Russia. And he's been hiding what he's talking about with Vladimir Putin. You put that on top of every other connection to Russia involving him or his family (I know, they're awful, right?) or his administration or, really, a whole bunch of your fellow Republicans, and, well, you know, if the fur hat fits...

It's stupid to even pretend anymore that you don't get that Trump is compromised. Every single time I've spoken to someone with connections to the White House, they say the same thing: a whole bunch of the people who ran the hell away from Trump did so because of "the Russia stuff." They know that the ship of state is going to run full speed into a scandal iceberg so big that it'll make Watergate look like a cube in that drink you make yourself every morning and every lunch just to make it through the day. And you know it. You know it because there wasn't an upheaval of outrage at the reports, just a sigh or whine from a few members of the GOP. If you thought Trump's relationship with Putin and Russia were defensible, you would have been out there defending it. Big league.

You're trying to figure out what to do when the ship slams into the iceberg and breaks apart before sinking into the depths.  You're an elected official, so you can't just bail (well, you could, but maybe you haven't put in enough time to get that cushy lobbying gig). Or maybe you have a slight nagging sense of right and wrong and, goddamnit, it just won't go away when you think about how you have to support Trump on so many things you know are wrong: the wall, the treatment of our allies, the blind support for dictators, this fucking shutdown that is hurting your constituents. You have to stay silent or maybe you can get away with a brief statement about how "disappointed" you are because, you know, tax cuts or something.

But this shit is just eating at you because you know...you fuckin' know...

Lemme put it this way. If this were President Hillary Clinton, you know that your party would have already burned her at a stake next to the Washington Monument or your ravening hordes of voters would have torn the Capitol down. And then what would you have done? You would have turned to anyone in Congress who enabled such treachery and sent the mob after them.

Well, guess what? You're the enablers of treachery now. And you're just lucky that we're a mob that believes in the judicial system. But every moment you stick with Trump and every moment you don't go after the other Republicans who might be compromised is another moment that makes you an accomplice, that makes you even dirtier, that makes you compromised. You're nervous now because you know you bought this ticket, and you're hoping if you close your eyes, it'll all get better.

It won't.

Here's the good news, as your evangelical frauds like to say: You don't have to be Republican. It's true. You don't.

It is more than possible, even likely, that the GOP brand will be poisonous. Oh, sure, it will always have the support of a third of the country who are so racist and terrible that they will support traitors if it keeps the Messicans and Mooslems out. But that's gonna be your cap. You're dead to the new generation of voters. And your voters are literally dying out.

So helicopter off the ship. Just bail on the GOP. Go Democrat. Go independent. Caucus with the Democrats, join the investigations, become a truth-seeker instead of a lie-keeper. Do it now, especially in the Senate, and you'll be ready to be on the right side of history. Goddamn, wouldn't you wanna do it just to see the look on Mitch McConnell's perpetually shocked bitch face?

Or we'll just watch you drown with the rest and put your name on a shit-colored monument to your betrayal of your country.


(Note: I don't really believe any Republican has the guts to do this. The party went all in on Trumpism, and all of the fuckers who went along with it deserve whatever they've got coming.)


What Did That Dumb Orange Motherfucker Say Now (Border Trip Edition)

Yesterday, we were treated to a three-movement symphony of Donald Trump's dumbfuckery as he continues to prove that one of the only motivating factors for his presidency is racism. (The other, obviously, is self-enrichment.) He's decided to die on his wall, and he doesn't give a fuck how many people he takes down with him. Burn down the whole fuckin' country, he says, because without a border wall/fence/barrier/sharknado, the country will burn anyways because of all them Mexicans.

Let's boil this down to just three unequivocally idiotic, cruel, mendacious, and baffling things he said, one from each appearance.

Before leaving for a merry jaunt down to Texas to visit the actual border with Mexico, Trump paused on the White House lawn to yell at reporters for a few minutes. In addition to declaring that the media is in cahoots with Democrats, Trump bellowed, " I really believe that they don’t care about crime.  I really believe this.  The Democrats don’t care about crime. They’ve been taken over by a group of young people who, frankly, in some cases — I’ve been watching — I actually think they’re crazy.  But they’ve been taken over by a group that is so far left.  I really don’t think they care about crime.  And, you know, sadly, they’re viewing this as the beginning of the 2020 presidential race, and that’s okay with me.  But they have been taken over by a group of people that don’t care about gangs.  They don’t care about human trafficking and drugs.  They don’t care about anything.  I’ll tell you what — they have gone crazy."

Let's not deal with the patently false allegation that Democrats "don't care about crime" since fuck him. Let's not deal with his shaking his small, elderly fist at those "young people" because he's really just jealous that they're gonna outlive his old ass and steal some media attention from him. Instead, look at that line "they're viewing this as the beginning of the 2020 presidential race." Trump started running for reelection five hours after he was sworn in on that terrible day in January 2017. His campaign ran an ad just before his boring Oval Office fart on Tuesday that declared the end of days if we don't build a border wall. This motherfucker accusing someone of campaigning is like a frog accusing another frog of eating flies. (Note: Trump looks like a fuckin' frog.)

When his lard ass got down to Texas, he held one of his ludicrous roundtable discussions where he pretended to listen to people and then pretended to be profound. This one was particularly odious because he paraded the families of people who have been killed by undocumented immigrants before the cameras. It was ghoulish and pathetic, and he exploited them like a porn director forcing an actress to shoot up with heroin before getting fucked by ten guys. And he said this:

"It’s common sense.  They say a wall is medieval.  Well, so is a wheel.  A wheel is older than a wall.  And I looked, and every single car out there — even the really expensive ones that the Secret Service uses — and believe me, they are expensive — I said, 'Do they all have wheels?'  'Yes.'  Oh, I thought it was medieval.  The wheel is older than the wall.  You know that? And there are some things that work.  You know what?  A wheel works and a wall works.  Nothing like a wall."

As many people who know ancient history have pointed out, the wheel was invented long after walls because, well, no shit. And others have said that modern tires with modern materials are a far fuckin' cry from a rounded stone. But put this in context. Trump said this, to the laughter of the gathered people, just before relatives of murder victims poured their hearts out. This goddamn fecal freak of a president is so enamored with the smell of his own shit that he couldn't help himself. He had to say something that sounded fake intelligent, something that the yahoos can repeat and that he can hear back from Hannity and Doocy and every other lickspittle in his pocket.

Finally, in one final border appearance, Trump took more questions from reporters, once again abusing them for his pleasure, like a louche emperor demanding another grape and getting furious when it's not peeled. And it would be easy to point out all the times Trump said that he was waiting to see what Congress does before declaring a national emergency, which proves, quite plainly, that there is no emergency if you can wait. That's not how emergencies work.

Instead, check out this: "If you read one of your competitors today, they will tell you that the Democrats that are starting to say this is not an argument they can win are some of the very young, very smart Democrats that just got elected to Congress."

Wait, are these the same "young people" who Trump called "crazy" just 6 hours prior? The fuck? He can't even keep his insults straight.

We are living in the middle of the delusions of a madman. It's like some philosophy experiment gone horribly wrong. And I don't know how we get out of it when he so clearly doesn't care who he hurts or what he says or even what is real. You can't argue with dumb. You'll just get dumber doing it.


There Are Crises in This Country, But the Border Isn't One of the Them

We can all parade horrible shit, making the dead dance for our purposes. That's what President Donald Trump, a phrase that still rolls around on the tongue like mealy clam, did last night in his noxious fart of a propaganda speech on security on the southern border of the United States.

After about five minutes of talking about the "humanitarian crisis" that he created, Trump got to the fucked-up violence he loves to describe: "a young police officer in California was savagely murdered in cold blood by an illegal alien, who just came across the border...an Air Force veteran was raped, murdered, and beaten to death with a hammer by an illegal alien with a long criminal history...an illegal alien was recently charged with murder for killing, beheading, and dismembering his neighbor." You get the idea. He gets off on this, like he got off on describing how MS-13 gang members use knives and machetes, reveling in the images like it's the hottest porn.

Just to fill in some details here: Ronil Singh, the police officer in California, was an immigrant, too, from Fiji. His assailant didn't "just" come across the border but had been in the United States for a while (and is a piece of shit). Marilyn Pharis, the Air Force veteran, was killed in 2015 in a crime that also saw an American citizen convicted. And the widow of Robert Page, beheaded in Georgia last year, said today that she supports border security but isn't sure anything can stop the actions of a single person: "Everybody on the earth is not bad and everybody on the earth is not good, no matter what your culture."

To be sure, these are terrible crimes, awful for their families and communities. No one would deny that. As far as we know, though, none of the crimes would have been prevented by a border wall. None of the killers snuck across the Rio Grande. Like, if I go to the UK as a visitor, I can stay there doing tourist shit for six months. If I work, I'm doing it illegally. And if I stay longer than six months, I'm an illegal immigrant. If I behead someone (which seems like way too much work), I'm an illegal immigrant who is a murderer. And I get bonus miles on my credit card to do it.

I'm not sure why a nightmare crime is worse if I'm an illegal immigrant. But I'm white, so Nigel Farage or some other prick wouldn't declare it an immigration crisis.

Besides, you want a fuckin' crisis? You want some awful shit that should terrify you to your core and demand that the government do something? Listen:

In Georgia, a man walked into a his ex-wife's beauty salon and shot her. When she tried to run away, he shot her again until she fell dead. Then he shot himself in the head and died. Her adult daughter was in the salon and saw it all happen.

In Florida, a man shot and killed his wife and then killed himself.

In Alabama, a man shot and killed his wife and then killed himself.

I don't have to go back to 2015 for my examples. These are from the last 48 hours. If I went back to 2015, we'd be here for weeks listing all the cases like these three. And I'd never mention gangs or undocumented immigrants.

You want a crisis? You want a national emergency? Then motherfucking men with motherfucking guns are a motherfucking crisis. The threat to women is a goddamn emergency. But Trump and Republicans won't do shit about that.

So, yeah, Trump is lying about the border in order to gin up the fear vote and solidify his mongrel base of racist idiots and racist paranoiacs.

What Democrats ought to do is shove up his ass the gruesome facts behind one of the real crises in this country, not the fake shit. He wants to prance around with a few corpses? Then let's pile a war's worth of dead women on his front step and say, "Here's your fuckin' wall."


The Only Talking Point: The Wall Is a Lie

When Democrats oppose Donald Trump on his fantasy of a wall/barrier/fence/whatever on the border with Mexico, they often bury the easiest, clearest reason to oppose it. Sure, yeah, it's racist, since, you know, none of the wall-humpers are talking about the extraordinarily porous border with Canada.  Sure, Nancy Pelosi is right that the wall is "immoral, expensive, and unwise."

But the easiest way to explain why Democrats have refused to fund it is that it's all a goddamn lie. That's it. That's all you have to say. No other explanation is needed: "The President is lying when he says that a border wall is needed. We may as well build a castle for his unicorn."

There is no national security crisis on the southern border of the United States. There is no terrorism crisis on the border: only six people on the Terrorist Watch List (itself a problematic entity, but let's focus here) were stopped by Border Patrol in the first half of 2018. That doesn't mean actual terrorists but people on the watch list. It's like saying you caught a half-dozen robbery suspects. There's a good chance most of 'em didn't rob shit. And, in his pummeling of White House spokestooge Sarah Sanders, Fox "news" host Chris Wallace, of all people, made the point that "the State Department says, quote, ‘There were no credible evidence of any terrorist coming across the border from Mexico.'" If Fox "news" agrees that Donald Trump is a fucking liar, he's a fucking liar.

There is no criminal crisis caused by undocumented immigrants coming through the southern border. According to Customs and Border Protection's own numbers, the Border Patrol arrested about 6300 "criminal aliens" (people who were convicted of previous crimes) in most of fiscal year 2018 (final numbers aren't in because, well, government shutdown). Over half were convicted of previously entering the country illegally. You can cut almost 2000 more for either driving under the influence or drug possession. 

The actual number of violent criminals who make it into the country is incredibly small, and even conservatives like the Cato Institute know that undocumented immigrants commit far fewer crimes (other than being in the country undocumented) than Americans because, well, it's pretty fuckin' obvious why. The lowest rate for crimes is among documented immigrants, even lower than among Americans. So, by the logic of crime prevention, we should be letting more immigrants in. That would legitimately make the nation safer. And, yeah, it's fucked up whenever anyone is murdered, whether it's by an immigrant or an American-born asshole. But that's a law enforcement issue that a fuckin' wall ain't gonna do shit to solve. 

Besides, how many children need to die or be kept in cages just so a bunch of paranoid racists can delude themselves into believing they're safer? I don't find that a fair trade-off.

As for the huge amount of drugs that get into the U.S. through the southern border, put aside that most of it comes in hidden in trucks and trains and cars and boats and planes that cross completely legally. Put aside the use of tunnels that are already dug under places where there isn't even a wall. Put aside all the things that our deranged cockmite of a president said at his lunatic press conference on Friday. Instead, focus on this: If you talk about stopping drug abuse in the United States and you don't support a comprehensive national health plan that includes help for addicts, you aren't serious about stopping drug abuse in the United States. You are bullshitting and preening for the cameras. You don't actually give a shit about addiction.

There are lies upon lies. The wall ain't gonna happen. How fucking long do you think cases are going to work their way through courts when the federal government attempts to seize private property through eminent domain? How fucking long do you think any cases dealing with water rights and access will take to get decided? How fucking long do you think cases that deal with the environmental impact of a goddamn barrier in the middle of migratory routes and feeding grounds are gonna take? How about cases involving lands that are sacred to indigenous people? How much money is all that costing? How much time? Gimme a fuckin' break. 

Trump likes to pretend that he knew that going to war in Iraq in 2003 was a mistake and that he knew that the whole case for war was based on lies. But what he's doing here is a mirror of the propaganda prior to the invasion of Iraq: a hyped crisis that is based on readily disputed information. He likes to pretend that he is saving the nation money by getting us out of Syria (even if he really isn't) or Afghanistan (which, if he does, that's actually a good thing). Meanwhile, he's willing to just piss away billions upon untold billions of dollars on this lie. The big difference now is that there are many on the left and right who aren't getting fooled this time.

Tomorrow night Trump's going to give some kind of rambling, incoherent, belligerent speech about the "Humanitarian and National Security crisis on our Southern Border," as he tweeted in his over-capitalizing way today. The only humanitarian crisis is the one that the United States has created by its cruel policies, made even crueler by this administration in violating laws and treaties on refugees and those seeking amnesty. The only national security crisis is in the greedy, diseased brains of those who need someone to demonize in order to maintain power (and probably get some sweet contracts to donors, like, say, the steel industry).

And those who oppose this nonsense have to take a stand for facts, for truth, for reality. Too many of us have given in too many times to the dangerous whims of our leaders, with many believing that the liars were acting in good faith. It has always led, at the very least, to distracting from solving real problems or, at worst, to disaster.

The wall is a lie. Everything about it is a lie. Everyone who wants to build it is a liar. That should be the message.

(Note: Nothing in here should be construed to mean that I don't want any border security. That's fuckin' stupid and only fuckin' stupid people would get that from this post.)

(Correction: I originally fucked up and wrote "Mike Wallace," the great reporter who was damned to be Chris Wallace's father.)


Okay, I'll Only Do This Weekly: Join the Rude Pundit Patreon (or Just Get It All Now)

I'm gonna start annoying myself if I keep asking you to join the fuck up already over at the Rude Pundit Patreon page. So I'll limit this begging to once a week.

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We're up over 250 amazing patrons, well on the way to making it so I can hire an audio editor for the podcast. The rude economy in action.

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We Are the Real Americans, Too

Let us acknowledge up front that it's bullshit that less than a quarter of the members of Congress are women. Let us acknowledge that it's bullshit that we're just now, in 2019, at the point of having the first Native American and first Muslim women in Congress.

But let us acknowlege that yesterday was a good day.

And let us acknowledge, too, fully and pridefully, that the surge of women taking seats in Congress is entirely due to the Democratic Party and that, clearly, obviously, with the popular vote behind us, we are the real Americans, too. That despite the attempt by the media since the seething poison of the Trump administration got into our circulatory system to say that only the white working class, especially the rural white working class, represented some kind of essential core of the citizenry, this multicultural, multiracial, multisexual, multi-religious, multi-multi is truly what the nation is. And we are slowly electing leaders that demonstrate that reality, including Nancy Pelosi, still the most powerful woman ever in the American government.

As a white man, I'm happy to say that it's about goddamn time that the day of the white man's hegemony in leadership and power has reached its crepuscular moment.

Let's take our crazy cloth pile of identities and ideas, where we are at least trying not to privilege white maleness over all else, and make a quilt to smother the savage, evil motherfuckers on the other side.


Shocker: Jerry Falwell, Jr, May Not Be a Good Christian, According to His Own Definition of "Christian"

Let us pause for just a moment to consider Jerry Falwell, Jr. The son of one of the great con artists in American history, Falwell is a wealthy man because he and his fraud of a father suckered the credulous worms who believed in their grifting god. They got poor people to send them their welfare and their Social Security and whatever pennies they could scrape from under the couch cushions, all because they thought it might get them a little dribble of the pissing grace of the Falwells' Jesus, and then they dared to tell the poor bastards that they would be damned to hellfire for eternity if they so much as gazed longingly at someone of the same sex. Or the opposite sex, if they were married. Or if they smoked a joint.

Yet here is Falwell, Jr., in an interview with the Washington Post, saying the poors aren't worth shit: "A poor person never gave anyone a job. A poor person never gave anybody charity, not of any real volume." All you can think is "Bitch, please, then put away the fuckin' donation plate."

And the solution to helping the poor is found through, of all the fuckers of mothers in the motherfucking world, Donald Trump. "I can’t imagine him doing anything that’s not good for the country," Falwell said, demonstrating a stunning lack of both imagination and reality. By the way, Liberty University, the bullshit place that bullshit evangelical conservatives get their bullshit degree from and that Falwell leads, says in its student "honor" code, "Sexual relations outside of a biblically ordained marriage between a natural-born man and a natural-born woman are not permissible." The Liberty University Law School, the bullshit place that bullshit evangelical lawyers get their bullshit law degrees, goes even further: "Non-marital sexual relations or the encouragement or advocacy of any form of sexual behavior that would undermine the Christian identity or faith mission of the University constitute morally inappropriate sexual misconduct and constitute violations of this Personal Code of Honor."

But Donald Trump, who bragged about how hot the chicks he banged were and quite possibly did more sexual behavior to undermine Christian identity (whatever the fuck that is) than a Miami bar full of pool boys, is awesomeness personified.

Which brings us to the pool boy.

It seems that Falwell and his wife "befriended" a pool attendant at the Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami (which does have a lovely pool, so good job, pool workers). Now that's fine, even charming, in an elitist way, that the ultra-rich Falwells met Giancarlo Granda and became pals. Except things went a little further. Not only did they start flying Granda around on their private jet to events, but they staked him $1.8 million to purchase a hostel in Miami. 

That hostel, by the way, is a total dive that welcomes LGBT and straight people and has a sign out front declaring "No religion" allowed on the premises. Indeed, drug use and sexual promiscuity are generally rampant there. Which makes the whole investment by the Falwells in 2012 goddamned weird. Unless...

I'm not saying that Jerry Falwell, Jr., and his wife Becki are fucking Granda, the pool boy. I'm not saying that Falwell is sucking Granda's dick or Falwell is fucking him in the ass while he's eating out Becki. I'm not saying that Granda is fucking Becki while Falwell masturbates in a corner. I'm not not saying that either. I'm saying that there is a distinct possibility that this is happening.

(Note: Open relationships, polyamory, and menage a whatevers can be beautiful, amazing things. This ain't about shaming people who do that. However, when the potential participants have made and continue to make much coin condemning others for their own behavior, well, fuck 'em. And not in a nice way.)

Why is Giancarlo Granda and his relationship to the Falwells significant in any sense other than to point out their hypocrisy? I mean, hypocrisy is to Republicans as cold is to ice cream, so no biggie, right? However, the other layer here is what makes this intriguing as fuck.

It seems that Michael Cohen, the now-chastened former Trump fixer and fucker-upper, had a kind of consultation relationship with Falwell. And Cohen talked with Falwell about a lawsuit related to the hostel. And he secured the evangelical leader's endorsement of Trump very early, shocking some in the evangelical community because, well, shit, it's Donald fuckin' Trump.

Oh, and there's a photo, allegedly, of Granda with Trump, finishing the circle.

Now, I'm not saying that Michael Cohen threatened to go public with information about the Falwells fucking Granda and blackmailed Falwell to endorse Trump early.

But I'm not not saying that.


Join Patreon for More Rude in 2019

You gotta sign up for the Rude Pundit's Patreon page. There's shit tons of bonus stuff. There's extra bloggery (like this year I held my breath and dove into the foul online QAnon Reddit pool and reported back), storytelling (like being a mall Santa in Louisiana and naked ice-diving in Denmark), audio fun (like advice for dealing with climate change deniers and a tale of how I got fired from Sears), and more (like a video interview with a total MAGA cretin).

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Let's expand the reach of the rudeness in 2019.