The Deplorables

Episode 50 In The Further Adventures Of An American Crime Family

Hey, look! I can post multiple of these every day with no sweat. Here is another.

Four years ago Hillary Clinton tossed away the conservative vote by calling out the “basket of deplorables” who supported candidate Trump. She could have used those votes in a few swing states.

Guess what. The deplorables are still here, and you should not watch for candidate Joe Biden to be so dismissive of them. He may not need to. From current polling we observe those deplorables may be the only ones still supporting Donald Trump.

I catch Rachel Maddow on YouTube whenever I can. Her commentary is always informed, and often she illustrates with graphics produced by the show’s staff. These are usually shots of headlines from other news sources, and they succinctly illustrate her talking points. The corruption and failures of the Trump administration are a prime target of hers, and I captured a few screen shots for posterity. They are stashed on my hard drive, and from time to time I will put up one of interest. Such as the above. This one says much. Before ascending to the highest office in this nation Donald Trump and his family lived a not-so-quiet life of white collar crime, one indication being their operation of a fraudulent university aimed at bilking thousands of victims. And American citizens voted for him. They were the deplorables.

And may Jesus have mercy on our souls.

The Deplorables

Episode 49 In The Further Adventures Of An American Crime Family

I catch Rachel Maddow on YouTube whenever I can. Her commentary is always informed, and often she illustrates with graphics produced by the show’s staff. These are usually shots of headlines from other news sources, and they succinctly illustrate her talking points. The corruption and failures of the Trump administration are a prime target of hers, and I captured a few screen shots for posterity. I have them stashed on my hard drive, and from time to time I will put up one of interest. Such as the above. This one says it all. Before ascending to the highest office in this nation Donald Trump and his family lived a not-so-quiet life of white collar crime. And American citizens voted for him.

And may Jesus have mercy on our souls.

Breitbart Mentality

Number 14 of an absolutely ridiculous series

Surprise, surprise! Not really. I subscribe to the Breitbart News email, and these items come to me regularly. Above is a recent one.

Without citing any sources, since I do not need to, the Washington Redskins professional football team has been catching flak for years over it’s mascot/team name. It is a blatant reference to Indians, and why they are called “Indians,” since there are already other people called “Indians” is an issue I will not get into.

Anyhow, people of the Americas have been comfortable with being called Indians, but many are not comfortable being referred to in other terms, “Braves,” for example. In fact, since the team is not owned by any people who call themselves Indians, but by people with no connection to any of the (American) Indian population, it would seem reasonable for actual Indians to make the decision regarding the team name.

Anyhow, with the recent and rightful backlash against racial injustice in this country the push has finally come to shove and the Washington, D.C. team is considering a name change. So…. What’s the fuss about?

Apparently the people at Breitbart find this news-worthy, and you have to wonder why. I mean, yeah, Breitbart News is the legacy of the late Andrew Breitbart, in his time a powerful voice for American conservatism. I have to take from Breitbart’s concern with this matter that any caving to calls for accommodation is an insult to conservatism, and again we have to wonder why. What does real conservatism have against accommodation to complaints from American citizens. To be clear, here is an excerpt from the linked article.

The Washington Redskins have been asked by their corporate sponsors to change their team name, and, it appears they are willing to consider doing so.

According to a statement released by the team and obtained by NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the Redskins are to conduct a “thorough review” of the team’s name.

Wait! That’s the entire article. Breitbart, from all appearances, is cool with the idea of a name change. But not some of their readers.

hey gee • 2 days ago
Since DC votes 97% for democrats, perhaps they should be called the Marxists

The One  hey gee • 2 days ago
I still think they should keep the name change the logo to a Ginger roofer in July.

jordanminn  The One • 2 days ago
The Washington Race Baiters………..

with either Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson as their mascot.

DeplorableghostofThomasPaine2  jordanminn • 2 days ago
I like “The Progressive Thinskins”

All right! There’s the Breitbart Mentality I have come to know and love.

The Deplorables

Episode 30 In The Further Adventures Of An American Crime Family

I never watched The Sopranos on TV, and it turned out there was no need. I can pull up any video on demand feed and watch a real American crime family in action. Their offerings are the kind of thing that gets me up in the morning. For example this:

DonaldJTrump.com <contact@victory.donaldtrump.com>Unsubscribe
To: jf_blanton@yahoo.com

Thu, Jun 11 at 11:32 AM

John,

Did you hear the news?

We recently launched new campaign ads to FIGHT BACK against the Fake News media’s biased coverage, but radical platforms like Twitter have already tried to BLOCK them.

Democrats are scared that millions of voters will see our EPIC ads and finally know the FACTS that the media has been trying to cover up. They don’t want you to see just how much America LOVES President Trump, so they keep trying to silence us AND our ads…

That’s right, readers. Let’s have a look at that “Fake News media’s biased coverage.

And consider how rotten it is for a private corporate concern like Twitter to block Trump campaign ads.

Yeah! That the way to block those ads. Hey, Twitter. I can still read it. Anyhow, it’s blocked. Were our troops storming the beaches on D-Day ever so blocked.

How about those Fake Media outlets? They don’t want people to see how much we love our Fearless Leader.

Trump’s most loyal media ally promised a pro-Trump poll. It didn’t deliver — and then pulled its story.

By Philip Bump June 11, 2020 at 5:42 p.m. CDT

CNN’s release of a poll this week showing President Trump trailing former vice president Joe Biden by 14 points nationally clearly rattled the president and his reelection campaign. In short order, Trump tweeted out a memo making various allegations about how and why CNN conducted the poll, each of them ludicrous and easily debunked. On Wednesday, the campaign escalated its efforts to portray CNN’s poll as unfair, demanding that CNN retract the poll and issue an apology.

CNN’s attorneys, with complete and understandable justification, declined to do so.
The network is one of Trump’s most frequent targets of negative attention. He has repeatedly bashed CNN’s reporting and on-air talent, disparaging the network as hopelessly biased against him. Trump’s taste in television coverage runs more along the lines of Fox News’s Sean Hannity, a fervent supporter of the president, and, in recent months, One America News.

I’m guessing we don’t love our Fearless Leader all that much.

Maybe we should vote for the cool guy in the aviator sunglasses.

Master of Deception

Number 2 of a Series

That’s a screen shot from last night’s Seth Meyers show. I added the caption.

It’s been 75 years and a few days. On 30 April (1 May?) 1945 Joseph Goebbels and his wife Magda took poison as the Soviet army closed in on the bunker beneath the Reich Chancellery. Prior to that Magda poisoned their six children.

Press secretaries don’t do that so much anymore. President’s Trump’s mouth pieces tend to quit or to get shuttled off to a better place, replaced always by a new face, adept at the art. The newest is Kayleigh McEnany, most recently candidate Trump’s campaign press secretary. And right away she is off to a good start, answering the question, “Will you pledge never to lie to us?” from a reporter. Her response was reassuring. “I will never lie to you. You have my word on that.”

People, I tell you. I am feeling better already.

Keep reading. It’s been a few hours, and McEnany is still White House Press Secretary, and we will see many  and newer lies in the future. You have my word on that.

And may Jesus have mercy on our souls.

Loser

Prince of Dreadful, Part 6

This series is devoted to answering that ageless question, “Are you tired of winning yet?” If you think we’ve been winning too much lately, my aim is to disabuse you of that construct. Here to assist me is a person I have employed in this effort. Right now he’s out in Washington, D.C., drawing a salary of $400,000 a year, but trust me, he’s worth every penny. Nobody repudiates “Are you tired of winning yet?” like President Donald Trump.

I am even less alone in this enterprise in so far as I pull from an army of news reporters, and even comedians. Without charging me a dime they follow the TiaS around, capturing his words for posterity and making them available on YouTube and similar outlets. Today I got up early and dialed in yesterday’s episode of A Closer Look, with Seth Meyers. In truth, this show pulls from other outlets, which is why you see them credited in the screen shots I use.

On Tuesday our Turd in a Suit cajoled us with the message he intends to cut this country’s funding to the World Health Organization. Rev.com made a transcript available, and I will paste it below. First some screen shots with snippets of monologue overlaid.

Following are excerpts from the Rev.com transcript.

We see that tunnel, and at the end of that tunnel, we see light. We’re starting to see it more than ever before. We’ve held our rate, the numbers, everything we’ve done. We’ve been very, very strong on it and very powerful on it.

Would we be able to prevent Americans from dying because we couldn’t get them ventilators, and the ventilators that they needed and they needed immediately. I instructed my team to move heaven and earth to make sure that this didn’t happen. We started to smartly ration and distribute the ventilators that we had and that others had. And I got daily updates on the supply we had, from requests coming in and people wanting to have updates. We had a great group of people working on it. I instructed my team to use the Defense Protection Act.

Donald Trump: (12:58)
And the Defense Production Act was used very powerfully, more powerfully than anybody would know. In fact, so powerfully that for the most part, we didn’t have to officially take it out. It was a hammer. It was a very powerful hammer, in order to manufacture as many ventilators as possible. Last year, America manufactured from a dead start, 30,000 ventilators. And this year the number will be over 150,000 ventilators. It could be as high as 200,000. Far more than we’ll ever need. So we’ll be able to stockpile, we’ll be able to talk to states about stockpiling. These are high quality ventilators. We had a choice. We could do inexpensive, less productive ventilators or high quality. We’ve done a high quality ventilator, so we should have anywhere from 150 to 200,000 ventilators.

People, this is the President of the United States speaking. How many different ways are there to spell “LOSER?

This is your president speaking.

Number 243 in a series

And now a few words from the President of the United States.

Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump

The New York Times is an embarrassment to journalism. They were a dead paper before I went into politics, and they will be a dead paper after I leave, which will be in 5 years. Fake News is the Enemy of the people!1:23 AM · Mar 8, 2020Twitter for iPhone

Wow! Fake news! They’re putting out fake news! You want some more fake news? I’ll show you some fake news.

That’s all the fake news for now. Read more later. And may Jesus have mercy on our souls.

 

 

 

Breitbart Mentality

Number 12

I subscribe to the Breitbart News email feed, and I get this frequently. It’s the “Liberal Love and Kindness” meme, intended to demonstrate that liberals are not the loving and kind people they purport to be. So stop right there. I consider myself to be somewhat liberal, and I have never advertised to be loving and kind. While there is nobody I hate, there are a few I would enjoy seeing run out of town on a rail. So, Breitbart News, forget this love and kindness bull shit. We are here to do battle.

Which gets me to my point for today. Try as I may, I find it difficult to differentiate Breitbart News from a dedicated shill for Donald Trump. Let me emphasize that. Donald Trump. There appears to be nothing Donald Trump will do or say that raises the hackles of Breitbart News. Nothing. Breitbart News, what kind of people are you? Let’s take a look at the person you are carrying water for:

Trump: Cokie Roberts ‘never treated me nicely’ but ‘was a professional’

President Trump said pioneering journalist Cokie Roberts, who died Tuesday at the age of 75, “never treated me nicely” but praised her as “a professional.”

“I never met her. She never treated me nicely. But I would like to wish her family well. She was a professional and I respect professionals. I respect you guys a lot, you people a lot. She was a real professional. Never treated me well, but I certainly respect her as a professional,” Trump told reporters on the flight from Albuquerque, N.M., to Mountain View, Calif., on Tuesday.

Yes, let’s get that straight. A person died. And President Trump noted her passing and her professionalism. And in the next breath Donald Trump, President of the United States, inserted his self esteem into the matter. What kind of human being does this kind of shit? This is the kind of person Breitbart News never seems to find fault with.

I hope you don’t think I am prepared to stop here. There is more. Please enjoy.

Breitbart News, let’s not hear a bunch more about liberal love and kindness.

A Deer in the Headlights

Some stories are told best through pictures.

From Fox News:

Trump clings to idea Alabama faced big threat from Dorian

Posted 

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump isn’t giving up on the dubious idea that Alabama faced a serious threat from Hurricane Dorian.

During an Oval Office briefing Wednesday, Trump displayed a map of the National Hurricane Center forecast for last Thursday that showed Dorian could track over Florida. The map he displayed included what appeared to be a hand-drawn half-circle that extended the cone of uncertainty over a swath of Alabama.

Trump had raised eyebrows and drawn an emphatic fact check from the National Weather Service on Sunday when he tweeted that Alabama, along with the Carolinas and Georgia, “will most likely be hit (much) harder than anticipated.”

Meanwhile, on another planet, GPO politicians and voters continue to support this president and his administration. I will leave you with this from Lynyrd Skynyrd:

Sweet home Alabama
Where the skies are so blue
Sweet home Alabama
Lord, I’m coming home to you

This is your president speaking.

Number 214 in a series

And now a few words from the President of the United States.

The dishonest media will NEVER keep us from accomplishing our objectives on behalf of our GREAT AMERICAN PEOPLE!

Yes, the President of the United States, arguably the most powerful person on this planet, is  bask at his Twitter account complaining about the rough deal he’s getting from the mainstream media. The screen shot above is from a video posted with the tweet. You may need to pull up the video to appreciate the president’s complaint. I don’t have a link. Go to the tweet to watch.

Meanwhile, here are additional cases of FAKE NEWS working to undermine this president.

There is no doubt. The FAKE NEWS is the enemy of the people.

 

The Conversation

Number 4 in a series

This breaks slightly from the theme set previously, but it does concern a conversation. It’s a conversation that was reported weeks ago, but it’s one that became salient with recent developments. Anderson Cooper had some fun with it last week on CNN, and the news channel played it with captions. Here it is.

It’s a joy to watch when ordinary words acquire an entirely new meaning.

Schlemiel-in-Chief

Number 35 in a series

A certain chief executive of the United States is seriously talking about running for the position next year, and since it is my hobby to twist the knife in this paper mache facade, I am bringing back a theme I have not used since last year. Here is more fun with our Schlemiel-in-Chief. Maybe all that will be needed this time out are a few screen shots from ABC World News Tonight with David Muir. The story is from the 8th of this month.

We know The Donald makes his way through the world by telling a stream of lies, but sometimes he tells the absolute truth.

I congratulate myself for my mastery of the English language, but in the above case I can think of no better way to put it. The man is truly a genius. Most spectacularly, his genius appears to be in the art of losing money. He is a true LOSER.

 

There is more.

Some feel. Some gut.

At this point my powers of expression fail me. There is no way I can compete with this.

I don’t know about you, but I feel good about having a financial genius in charge of our nation’s economy. And again my powers of expression fail me.

Breitbart Mentality

Number 8

You know it already, but I will repeat: I subscribe to Breitbart’s email newsletter, and something pops up in my mail box every day or so. I gave this one a look, and I must say I was impressed. I captured a screen shot. The page showed more, but I cropped down to the item of interest. Here is the story, from other sources.

By Julie TurkewitzJack Healy and Patricia Mazzei

May 8, 2019

HIGHLANDS RANCH, Colo. — It was three days before the last day of school, and the students inside Ms. Harper’s English classroom were whiling away the last period of the day watching “The Princess Bride” when one of their classmates walked in late and pulled out a gun.

“The only thing he said out loud to the students was, ‘Don’t you move,’” said Nui Giasolli, an 18-year-old senior who was in the class at the time.

In that moment, she recalled, Kendrick Castillo, a gentle teenager fascinated by cars and engineering, lunged to stop the gunman and was shot dead. Eight other students were wounded in the shooting at STEM School Highlands Ranch on Tuesday afternoon, which the authorities said was carried out by two fellow students.

Yes, two students at the school entered with handguns, and one of them opened fire, killing Kendrick Castillo and wounding seven others. But that’s not what caught the attention of Breitbart News. Not that the two students had access to handguns. For Breitbart the story to headline was that one of the gunmen is transsexual. Yes, he’s not like the rest of us. At the very least, he’s not like the Breitbart audience. He’s not straight. He’s not manly. He’s d-i-f-f-e-r-e-n-t. That’s what matters. in Breitbart mentality.

For the record, and this is directed at whoever is picking stories at Breitbart and whoever is reading these stories, here is the story. Two young men, on the verge of entering the adult world, stepped up where our leaders have failed to.

Breitbart Mentality

Number 6

Caught me! My cover is blown. Yes, I do subscribe to Breitbart’s news stream. The proof is the screen shot above from an email I received yesterday.. I reproduce it here to further the conversation on Breitbart mentality. Here are some specifics.

Notice the banner: “LIBERAL LOVE AND KINDNESS.” It works this way. Liberals want you to think they are loving and kind. But we can show they are not. It’s called the straw man argument. You pose a premise that is easily knocked down: liberals profess to be loving and kind. It’s a straw man that is easily knocked down, to wit: this example. A liberal Democrat, new to Congress this month, has called President Trump a motherfucker. Bad, bad. Some reality.

Lots of my liberal friends profess to be loving and kind, and that is largely true. However, not all liberals are loving and kind, just as not all conservatives are cold-hearted and cruel. When they want to be, liberals can be most cruel, especially when they tell the truth. Here is some truth to you from me, a professed liberal. It is not loving and kind. It is the truth:

Note to Breitbart: please purchase a sense of irony.

This is your President speaking.

Number 163 in a series

And now a few words from the President of the United States:

Melania and I were treated very nicely yesterday in Pittsburgh. The Office of the President was shown great respect on a very sad & solemn day. We were treated so warmly. Small protest was not seen by us, staged far away. The Fake News stories were just the opposite-Disgraceful!

That will do it with the fake news for today. And now a few more words from the President of the United States.

Readers, I have had my laugh for today. Take the weekend off.

The Awful Truth

Number 4 in a Series

These are troubling times. The truth is becoming an endangered species. The history of threats is long. This is a story about The Washington  Post.

Katharine Graham was the daughter of Eugene Meyer, who purchased The Post at a bankruptcy sale in 1933. Katherine (Kay), went to work for the newspaper in 1933, and in 1938 she married Phillip Graham, then a clerk for Supreme Court Justice Felix Frankfurter. When Eugene Meyer died in 1959 he bequeathed management responsibilities to Phillip instead of to his daughter. Eventually Phillip Graham’s health deteriorated, ,and he ended his own life in 1963. Katherine assumed management of the paper for the following twenty years. She died in 2001. 1971 was a critical time for The Post, it was marginally profitable, if at all. It was at this point the nature of The Post changed forever.

The story is told in the movie The Post, which was released last year and which features Meryl Streep as Katherine Graham and Tom Hanks as Post editor Ben Bradlee. An in-law lent me a copy of the DVD, whence these screen shots. Details are from Wikipedia.

Who would have thought there could be such drama in a movie where nobody gets killed, there are no sexual encounters, and huge amounts of money are not stolen in armored car heists? This movie packs tension and suspense into a 116-minute run time, and to give it justice I am illustrating with 35 images. There’s going to be more after a short review of the plot.

The opening scene shows young State Department military analyst, Daniel Ellsberg (Matthew Rhys), suiting up to head off into combat with U.S. troops in Vietnam. This is in 1966, a time when the heat was building fast. Forget my having promised nobody would die. We see troops being killed in an ambush.

Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara (Bruce Greenwood) is in-country, and Ellsberg hears the secretary tell others he has great confidence in the way things are going. This is contrary to what McNamara has said in private, and it is contrary to what Ellsberg has put into his reports. Back home and working for the Rand Corporation, Ellsberg observes the government, now under a new administration, continues to propagate the myth. He takes action in the form of violating the Espionage Act of 1917 and also the terms of his top secret clearance. In small packets he filches sections of the Report of the Office of the Secretary of Defense Vietnam Task Force, a document that traces “United States Department of Defense history of the United States’ political and military involvement in Vietnam from 1945 to 1967.” He eventually makes copies of the document before returning the originals. He releases the copies to The New York Times.

Meanwhile, Katherine Graham is discussing the financial situation of  The Post. The solution is to take the paper public, executing an IPO, selling stock in the company to investors while retaining majority control.

Editor Ben Bradlee and his staff are others concerned about the newspaper. They are located down the street from the most powerful government in the world, yet their competitor, The New York Times, is getting first breaks on important political stories. Bradlee confers with his staff, and they conclude that Times reporter Neil Sheehan has been off the grid for days. What is he working on? Does The Times have a big story in gestation? Bradlee hands an intern $40 and tells him to take a train to New York, head over to The Times on 43rd Street, and find out what Sheehan is up to.

The intern crosses the street to the Times building, and he asks a UPS delivery man what floor the newsroom is on. The man tells him it’s the 6th, and while his back is turned, the intern steals an envelope from the top of the man’s stack and carries it into the building. He has no idea where to find Sheehan, so he gets on the elevator. Others get on. One of them is holding a markup of the next day’s front page. There is a big blank space with the name “Sheehan” written in. The intern hands over his purloined envelope to the man on the elevator and returns to Washington and tells Bradlee what he saw.

Simultaneously, Catherine has had a conversation with McNamara, who happens to be a personal friend of long standing. McNamara tells her there is hot water with The Times. They are about to run a story that is not complimentary to McNamara. Bradlee is desperate to get a lead on that story.

Meanwhile, Catherine negotiates with the bankers on the IPO. They want to  purchase stock at $24 and some change a share. That will mean The Post will lose the financial  wherewithal for 25 reporters.

The Times hits the street with the Pentagon Papers story, and is promptly enjoined by the government from publishing additional information. Bradlee is desperate to get ahead of the curve on this story, but his chances are grim.

Then, a bomb shell. A young woman steps out of a crowd on the street and enters the Post newsroom with a package. She places it on top of the typewriter of the first mature reporter she comes to, and then she leaves without saying anything more. When the reporter opens the package he discovers excerpts from the Pentagon Papers.

Bradlee has his entry into the story. But the most that can be determined is the source of the leak is possibly Ellsberg. Post reporters try to track him down. There is no Google, so they use the telephone. “May I speak to Daniel Ellsberg?” “Who?” Another call, “Daniel Ellsberg, please.” “He’s not in.” Bingo! Since there were no cell phones for the NSA to track in those days, they employed the time-tested use of random pay phones on the street. Assistant Editor Ben Bagdikian (Bob Odenkirk) makes the critical connection.

It’s a crucial time for The Post. The paper goes public on AMEX at the moment its value may drop close to zero.

But the pay phone operation yields gold. In a motel room Bagdikian meets with Ellsberg and receives a boatload of paper.

He carries it back to Washington, purchasing a first class ticket for it. At Bradlee’s house he gets help unloading his cargo from the taxi. Bradlee’s daughter is out front selling  lemonade.

Inside, the living room is turned into a sorting center. The papers are in no special order, and the editors need to make a story out of the mess.

Katherine Graham reaches a crisis as McNamara drops by for some serious talk.

McNamara protests that he had to make difficult decisions, and the reputation of the country is at stake. Katherine reminds him of the men who went to Vietnam under false pretenses, some of them friends and relatives. Also, there are those who died.

The Post has the story. To publish or not to publish? There is grave legal danger. Company lawyers urge holding off. Editors argue otherwise. If the government can deny publican in advance, then free press in the United States will be gone forever. Katherine says, “Do it.”

The story is proofed and sent down to the composing room by pneumatic tube. There the mechanical process of putting together news pages is put on  display. It is awsome to watch.

For the past many years newspaper composition has been done by computer. Something like Microsoft Word is used to create the page, and most likely something like laser printers are used to generate what is called “cold type.” The cold type is an aluminum foil with ink-philic areas forming the print, text and half-tone images. Then the foil is wrapped on a printing drum, and rolled against an inking drum. Ink transfers to the foil, which then rolls over a rubber “mattress,” which picks up the ink image. The rubber mattress drum then rolls over the paper, printing the image on the paper. It’s called “offset printing.”

In the old days they used “hot type.” The composing machine had a keyboard that selected molds for the characters. Molten metal (mostly lead) poured into the molds, making hard-face type. Pages of these metal typefaces were then mounted on drums which rotated, picking up ink and transferring ink to paper. These were huge machines.

The page is composed and then assembled into the presses. The printing deadline is nigh. It’s time to shit or get off the pot. Katherine receives stern advice not to publish. Bradlee is there. She tells him to roll it. He picks up the phone, rings the press floor and says, “Go.” The operator presses the critical button, setting in motion a train of events that cannot be reversed. It starts with a loud alarm bell. The presses are about to  turn, so people better get out of the way.

And the die is cast. Miles of newsprint run through the presses.

Workers scoop up bundles and bind them for distribution.

Workers at the dock load the bundles onto trucks.

Trucks roll out of the plant. There is no turning back now.

A staffer signals Bradlee that Assistant Attorney General of the Office of Legal Counsel William Rehnquist is on the line. Rehnquist advises Bradlee that publication of the story will be a violation of the Espionage Act. Bradlee thanks him for wasting his time (my words).

The story is already on the street. Literally. Bundles of papers are dropped off the backs of trucks for pick up by distributors, including a drop-off point in front of the White House.

Katherine wanders the newsroom, fretting over the consequences.

The Times reports the status. It has been enjoined from publishing, temporarily, while The Post escaped the ban.

There is no ambivalence elsewhere. Newspapers almost without exception join The Post, republishing the story. It is obvious to all that freedom of the press is at stake. Also significant, The Post has come up from  being a hometown newspaper. Any concerns on the part of the bankers can now be dispelled. The newspaper’s value has escalated.

The Supreme Court takes the case immediately.

Katherine Graham, waiting in line to attend the hearing, is approached by a government worker, a young woman carrying a box of documents into the chamber. She escorts Katherine into the chamber and reminds Katherine that she agrees with what The Post is doing. In the hearing a judge asks whether The Post would have published plans for the D-Day Invasion. The Post lawyer responds that a survey of past situational assessments hardly compares to a military operation. As Katherine exits the building, women along her path look on in admiration. Women are coming to power at this time, and she is clearly an exemplar.

The phone rings in the newsroom. The Court has reached a decision. It’s 6-3 in favor of The Times. Siding with the majority, Justice Black wrote, “The press was to serve the governed, not the governors.” In particular, the First Amendment has the intent of protecting the press and not the government.

Katherine continues to get the feel of her newspaper, visiting the composing room.

Strolling with Bradlee through the press room by the trucking dock.

Not all are pleased. A closing shot shows the outline of Richard Nixon months later, viewed through a White House window. The voice is likely ripped directly from the Oval Office tapes that would later haul him down. He says, “no reporter from the Washington Post is ever to be in the White House.”

One year later a security guard checks a door in the Watergate office complex that has had its lock taped over, and a resident at the adjacent Watergate Hotel phones police to report people using flashlights in the office complex. Two years after that, Nixon was forced to resign.

Ellsberg was subsequently prosecuted for his actions, but government misconduct in obtaining evidence against him resulted in the case being thrown out with prejudice. The Watergate break-in was associated with attempts to discern any connection between Ellsberg and the Democratic National Committee.

In more recent cases, people with access to classified data have leaked the contents, perhaps with Ellsberg in mind. To be sure, Ellsberg was guilty of a crime, and it was proper to prosecute him. What is not proper is to claim to be a martyr for a cause and not to suffer consequences. My thinking is that being a martyr means you are dead. In the case of the Pentagon Papers, public good was done.

I have held a government security clearance in the past, and I always took the papers I signed seriously. I was promised jail time and even execution if I divulged classified information. Beyond that, I find humor in government attempts to stifle dissemination of information once it is leaked. What happens when classified information is compromised is that it immediately becomes available to our country’s enemies, and the only result of restricting additional dissemination is to  keep the secret from the American people. Which is often the purpose. There are things that would be damaging if our enemies has access, and that would be even more damaging if the voters have access. Yeah, it goes that way.

I have previous critiqued the case of Edward Snowden, and I have low regard for his actions. He revealed our government was doing some unsavory things (spying on friendly governments), but these were not illegal actions. Furthermore, divulging this information was damaging to our intelligence operations, unlike releasing the Pentagon Papers. Snowden wants to come home as a hero, forgetting that one must first die to become a martyr. He chose to seek refuge with one of this country’s most worrisome enemies, and it is my hope he will remain there to enjoy the fruits of his folly.

The fate of The Washington Post is a primary theme of the movie, and it’s a problem that has been amplified by emerging technologies. The list is long. The advent of cold type (offset printing) eliminated the jobs of multitudes of typesetters. Word processors and laser printers eliminated the work of many cold type composers. Word processing software has streamlined the story creation and editing process, definitely reducing the number of openings for spell checkers. The advent of Web publishing is threatening to eliminate all print journalism. Now anybody with a cheap computer and an Internet connection can be a publisher—that you are reading this now demonstrates the point.

A thing that cannot be eliminated easily is the work of source reporters, people who do the leg work, go to the sites, interview the people, record what they observe, and make it all into a coherent story that somebody will pay to read. Others attempt to take the place of these journalists, and the result has been a dilution of truth in the news. The ability to publish with minimal cost and with zero accountability is working adversely to mold public opinion. Concerned readers can work to counter this by underwriting mainstream journalism. If you are like me, you are no longer settled to the point you can receive a daily newspaper, 1/4 of which you might read, at your door every day.

The recourse, a path I have taken, is to subscribe to mainstream news on-line. We have a president who seeks with determination, to undermine mainstream news, casting outlets, such as The New York Times,  as “fake news.” He also echoes, “Failing NYT.” And the NYT is down on subscriptions and  revenue since decades past. In response to the president’s attacks I have counterattacked by obtaining an on-line subscription to The Times. My few dollars a month subscription gets me the news I am looking for in a form I can use in my work. Quotes, even from decades past, can be tracked down and copied for quotation in my postings.

Readers concerned about the survival of truth in news are encouraged to subscribe on-line. Nearly all publications include  this option. Consider subscribing to one or more of the following:

  • New York Times
  • Washington Post
  • Los Angeles Times
  • Dallas Morning News
  • Houston Chronicle
  • Boston Globe
  • Philadelphia Inquirer
  • Kansas City Star
  • Detroit Free Press

There are many more. An on-line subscription means the-ink to-paper intermediary is being  eliminated, writers are getting paid for their efforts, and healthy sources of information are being preserved. Act for your own best interests.

Don’t drop the soap.

Number 8 in a Series

Screen shots from World News Tonight with David Muir streaming on Hulu

In case you were waiting for the other shoe to drop…

Extending the play on metaphors, this train appears to be coming into the station. Last night on ABC World News Tonight with David Muir, the lead story was Trump lawyer Michael Cohen. We (I) never heard of Cohen until the matter of porn star Stormy Daniels (Stephanie Clifford) began to appear above the fold. I had hoped the terms “porn star” and “President of the United States” would not occur in the same sentence until I had time to catch my breath, but I seem to have lost control of events. Who would have known a one-night stand could have such legs?

Anyhow, Cohen, President Trump’s lawyer, fixer, and close associate for over ten years paid Ms. Clifford $130,000 not to tell everybody in the world about a one-time poke in the sack with Mr. Trump—this just days before voters surged in historic numbers to elevate Mr. Trump to the highest office in the land. Matters have gone downhill since.

Clifford began to figure she had been engineered, such connivance being between Cohen and her own lawyer Keith M. Davidson. She hired a new lawyer, Michael Avenatti. Avenatti’s aggressive prosecution of the case led him to perform intense investigation, which turned up more than anybody bargained for. Besides colluding with Davidson to stifle Clifford, Cohen had been involved in bunches of other dirty doings, some of which crossed the line into prosecutable offense. Came the time when federal investigators obtained a warrant to dig into Cohen’s business dealings.

President Trump was visible upset, and he likened the treasure hunt to McCarthyism. Here he is denouncing for the cameras.

As the pressure continued to build, Cohen vowed he would always remain loyal to President Trump. Here he is asserting his deathless loyalty. “I will do anything to protect Mr. Trump.”

Except go to jail, apparently.

Yeah, dudes, time to get fitted for stripes, and also time keep in mind sage advice I have offered all along. Don’t drop the soap.

Odd Ball Conservatives Say the Darndest Things

Number 6 in a Series

They do, dear readers. Yes they do:

Fox & Friends” host Pete Hegseth trashed the “failing New York Times” on Friday for supposedly not reporting on the recent capture of five ISIS leaders, apparently unaware the paper beat Fox News to the story.

“I looked for the five ISIS leaders captured in the failing New York Times,” Hegseth said, flipping through the newspaper. “And in the print edition today, I have not seen it yet.”

I am thinking this is what is called fake news.

Odd Ball Conservatives Say the Darndest Things

A Continuing Thread – Number 2

So I watched this, after the fact, and it was something to behold. At the White House Correspondents’ Press Association annual dinner, comedienne Michelle Wolf rose to deliver the benediction. Actually, they may not have anything like a benediction at these functions, but they traditionally invite somebody in to roast popular people. It’s in the spirit of H.L. Mencken: “My job is to comfort the afflicted and to afflict the comfortable.” There is no evidence Mencken ever said such a thing, but it is good reading. Anyhow, Wolf saw her duty Saturday night to afflict the comfortable, and afflict she did, not so much with a prick but with a blackjack. White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders was a particular target:

I actually really like Sarah. I think she’s very resourceful,” Wolf said. “She burns facts and then she uses that ash to create a perfect smoky eye. Maybe she’s born with it, maybe it’s lies. It’s probably lies.

I’m never really sure what to call Sarah Huckabee Sanders,” the comedian continued. “Is it Sarah Sanders? Is it Sarah Huckabee Sanders? Is it Cousin Huckabee? Is it Auntie Huckabee Sanders? Like, what’s Uncle Tom but for white women who disappoint other white women?

Yeah. I’m noted at times for being crude and lewd, but I probably could have finessed this one. Predictably, Wolf caught some flak over this and other bludgeonings of the night, definitely from the Left, but from the Right with a vengeance. I’m going to give the Left a pass on this and direct my attention to comments from the Right. Let’s start with prominent conservative politician Mike Huckabee, a close relative of Sarah Huckabee Sanders. A sample response from Governor Huckabee:

The WHCD was supposed to celebrate the 1st Amendment. Instead they celebrated bullying, vulgarity, and hate. They got all dressed up so they would look nicer when they had a hired gun savagely attack their guests. Do they really wonder why America has no respect for them? Sad!

Yes… This is the kind of thing I long to hear (read). It’s the yodel of the congenitally indignant. It’s the defense of  the indefensible. Missing from Governor Huckabee’s self-righteous lament is a vast amount of perspective. It may be time for a review of what it is that Mrs. Sanders does for a living. From all appearances her daily routine consists of attempting to explain away a flood of massive lies and insults. Let us not allow the sun to set before visiting some of this ripe fruit:

Katie Couric, the third rate reporter, who has been largely forgotten, should be ashamed of herself for the fraudulent editing of her doc.

Lyin’ Ted Cruz consistently said that he will, and must, win Indiana. If he doesn’t he should drop out of the race-stop wasting time & money

. was one of the worst performing stocks on the S&P last year, plunging 46%. Very disloyal company. Another win for Trump! Boycott.

I gave a woman named Barbara Res a top N.Y. construction job, when that was unheard of, and now she is nasty. So much for a nice thank you!

I know Mark Cuban well. He backed me big-time but I wasn’t interested in taking all of his calls.He’s not smart enough to run for president!

Comey drafted the Crooked Hillary exoneration long before he talked to her (lied in Congress to Senator G), then based his decisions on her poll numbers. Disgruntled, he, McCabe, and the others, committed many crimes!

Watched low rated for first time in long time. FAKE NEWS. He called me to stop a National Enquirer article. I said no! Bad show

. is a total low life— read his past tweets. A dummy with no “it” factor. Will fade fast.

The New York Times and a third rate reporter named Maggie Haberman, known as a Crooked H flunkie who I don’t speak to and have nothing to do with, are going out of their way to destroy Michael Cohen and his relationship with me in the hope that he will “flip.” They use….

That’s enough of Twitter. President Trump’s candor in assessing various people out of favor is legendary. From earlier this year:

Self-obsessed billionaire Donald Trump earlier snatched the campaign torch from the Republican Party by scooping up conservative America’s low-hanging fruit. Full disclosure: it’s something I proclaimed over a year ago could not be done. I was wrong! How wrong? Very wrong. Donald Trump is the one candidate who displays an astonishing degree of class:

In the article, I wrote that Trump could not be reached for comment, but a spokesman said the man’s comments were “categorically untrue.”

The story ran below the fold in the business news section with the headline: How a Curious Visitor Beat Trump at the Casino Game.

And now I was holding for Mr. Trump.

There was no hello. But there was yelling, lots of yelling.

The word “shit” was used repeatedly as a noun and adjective.

I had shit for brains.

I worked for a shitty newspaper.

What sort of shit did I write.

Before I could reply, he hung up.

Then he called my editor in Philadelphia, Craig Stock. Now it was Craig’s turn to “Hold for Mr. Trump.”

Craig was treated to the same Trumpian wordplay, but got an added treat. Trump referred to me as “that cunt.”

There is more from that same post:

A cute nickname for a United States senator:

Pocahontas just stated that the Democrats, lead by the legendary Crooked Hillary Clinton, rigged the Primaries! Lets go FBI & Justice Dept.

Characterization of a rival candidate.

Crooked Hillary Clinton is the worst (and biggest) loser of all time. She just can’t stop, which is so good for the Republican Party. Hillary, get on with your life and give it another try in three years!

NFL players who protest.

“Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now. Out! He’s fired. He’s fired!’” the president said at a rally for Republican senator Luther Strange, who is running in a special election next week to remain in the seat vacated by attorney general Jeff Sessions.

A writer who writes unkind things about Donald Trump.

The Mercer Family recently dumped the leaker known as Sloppy Steve Bannon. Smart!

Most would envy Mrs. Sanders’ professional obligation to front for such as this. One might wonder whence comes the wherewithal. Here’s a hint:

Huckabee has voiced his support of intelligent design and he has stated that he does not accept the validity of Darwin’s theory of evolution. He was quoted in July 2004 on Arkansans Ask, his regular show on the Arkansas Educational Television Network: “I think that students also should be given exposure to the theories not only of evolution but to the basis of those who believe in creationism.”

In April 2011, Huckabee said, “I almost wish that there would be a simultaneous telecast and all Americans would be forced, at gunpoint, to listen to every David Barton message,” in praise of the Christian revisionist historian David Barton.

Within hours of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, Huckabee made headlines in the U.S. and abroad for stating on Fox News: “We ask why there is violence in our schools, but we have systematically removed God from our schools,” and further asked, “Should we be so surprised that schools would become a place of carnage?”

In September 2014, Huckabee said, “Fire the ones who refuse to hear not only our hearts, but God’s heart” (for which he was criticized by Richard Dawkins).

Support for Intelligent Design? Disdain for modern theories of modern biology? Praise for David Barton? Defiance of the rule of law? Add to that a deliberate distortion of American history:

The story starts in a class room where the teacher has the kids recite the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag, with the “under God” wording. One kid refuses because of the under God language, and later the teacher is threatened with dismissal for this breach of school protocol.

OK, right there I hit a snag. I’ve been around the sun a few times, and I recall the time before the “under God” language was added, and I as yet unaware of any public school that disallows the “under God” language. Actually, a few years back Michael Newdow sued his daughter’s school, the United States Congress, et al, over the use of the “under God” language. The Supreme Court ultimately dismissed Newdow’s suit, since he was not the custodial guardian of his daughter and really had no legal standing in the matter. More recently, a family in Massachusetts has sued over the pledge as a violation of that state’s own equal protection clause in its constitution. So far as I know, all attempts to prohibit the “under God” language have been thwarted. So, where did the producers of One Nation get this scenario. We may have to ask learned historian Mike Huckabee.

Yes, it would appear the fruit does not fall far from from the tree, and for the Huckabees the truth is a sometime thing. Setting the crude and lewd aside for a moment, on Saturday night it was obvious to all the slings and arrows were well directed. That Mrs. Sanders has not resigned her unenviable position speaks for itself. In case I have not made my point, here it is. Sarah Huckabee Sanders is a lying sack of shit, a trait that seems to run in the family.