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herding cats

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Member since: Mon Nov 18, 2013, 02:56 PM
Number of posts: 18,693

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Dem to unveil bill requiring a White House psychiatrist for Trump. (Not the Onion)

Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) reportedly plans to file a bill that would require the White House to have an in-house psychiatrist.

“I’m looking at it from the perspective of, if there are questions about the mental health of the president of the United States, what may be the best way to get the president treatment?” Lieu told the Huffington Post.

“We’re now in the 21st century. Mental health is just as important as physical health,” he added.

The Democratic lawmaker reportedly plans to introduce the bill as early as next week.

Lieu has previously raised concerns with President Trump's mental health, suggesting that the commander in chief could use a mental health evaluation.


Clinton tweets in defense of Warren: 'Nevertheless, she persisted. So must we all.'

Hillary Clinton took to Twitter to weigh after Senate Republicans blocked Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) from speaking on the Senate floor.

Clinton's tweet quoted a line from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell that has been widely shared since he led Republicans in a party line vote to block a Tuesday night speech from Warren on the floor.

"She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted,'" Clinton quoted McConnell in her tweet. "So must we all."

Posted by herding cats | Wed Feb 8, 2017, 01:41 PM (1 replies)

AP FACT CHECK: Trump says terrorism acts ignored. Evidence?

THE FACTS: Trump and his team have cited only one example of a deadly terrorist attack anywhere going unreported, the one that didn't happen in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Adviser Kellyanne Conway spoke about a Bowling Green "massacre" that didn't take place, correcting herself when she was called out on the error.

As for Trump's claim about Europe, it's probably true that you haven't heard of every attack on the continent that can be tied to terrorism. Scores if not hundreds happen every year. Many don't rise to the level of an international audience because they cause no casualties, or little or no property damage, or are carried out by unknown assailants for unclear reasons.

One exhaustive list is the Global Terrorism Database , maintained by the University of Maryland. It lists 321 episodes of suspected or known terrorism in Western Europe alone in 2015. Many are anti-Muslim attacks against mosques, not the brand of terrorism Trump has expressed concern about. Many are attacks undertaken for right-wing or left-wing causes that have nothing to do with Islamic extremism or xenophobic attacks on mosques.


The devastating attacks by Islamic extremists that year are also on the list, among them the murderous assault on the Paris offices of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, and the even bloodier attack at Paris' Bataclan concert hall, the worst in a series of killings in one day. Those attacks and other deadly ones in Europe received saturation coverage for days.

But even the smaller, non-lethal acts of terrorism received coverage: The database itself is built from media reports.
Posted by herding cats | Mon Feb 6, 2017, 06:54 PM (0 replies)

Trump claims the media is hiding terror attracts in Europe.

"All over Europe, it's happening. It's gotten to a point where it's not even being reported. And in many cases the very, very dishonest press doesn't want to report it. They have their reasons, and you understand that," Trump said without explaining his allegations.

EMILYs List is launching Run to Win

EMILY’s List is launching Run to Win, a national recruitment campaign aimed at recruiting and helping thousands of pro-choice Democratic women around the country run for office and win.

We've been working to recruit and elect women to office for over 30 years because we know that women bring unique and diverse experiences that matter for policies that will impact our families. Forty percent of the candidates EMILY’s List has helped elect to Congress have been women of color and more young women are stepping up to run. Diverse representation at every level of government means we’ll all have a voice.

That’s where YOU come in. We are asking you to step up and run for office, especially at the state and local level. And men, you can help by encouraging your wife, daughter, colleague, and friends to run too.

You don’t have to have years of political experience, a Ph.D. in the issues that matter to you, or a law degree (although those women are welcome too). You know when policies work for you and your family and when they don’t. We think it’s long overdue that you have a seat at the decision-making table.

EMILY’s List is doubling our forces across the country to train and recruit new candidates. We can help give you the tools to be a strong and strategic candidate. In-person trainings, webinars, and other resources will introduce you to the basic tools needed to run and win.


This is excellent!
Posted by herding cats | Mon Feb 6, 2017, 01:02 PM (2 replies)

Trump didn't know what he was signing when he placed Bannon on security council.

WASHINGTON — President Trump loves to set the day’s narrative at dawn, but the deeper story of his White House is best told at night.

Aides confer in the dark because they cannot figure out how to operate the light switches in the cabinet room. Visitors conclude their meetings and then wander around, testing doorknobs until finding one that leads to an exit. In a darkened, mostly empty West Wing, Mr. Trump’s provocative chief strategist, Stephen K. Bannon, finishes another 16-hour day planning new lines of attack.


Cloistered in the White House, he now has little access to his fans and supporters — an important source of feedback and validation — and feels increasingly pinched by the pressures of the job and the constant presence of protests, one of the reasons he was forced to scrap a planned trip to Milwaukee last week. For a sense of what is happening outside, he watches cable, both at night and during the day — too much in the eyes of some aides — often offering a bitter play-by-play of critics like CNN’s Don Lemon.

Until the past few days, Mr. Trump was telling his friends and advisers that he believed the opening stages of his presidency were going well. “Did you hear that, this guy thinks it’s been terrible!” Mr. Trump said mockingly to other aides when one dissenting view was voiced last week during a West Wing meeting.

But his opinion has begun to change with a relentless parade of bad headlines.

Mr. Trump got away from the White House this weekend for the first time since his inauguration, spending it in Palm Beach, Fla., at his private club, Mar-a-Lago, posting Twitter messages angrily — and in personal terms — about the federal judge who put a nationwide halt on the travel ban. Mr. Bannon and Reince Priebus, the two clashing power centers, traveled with him.


Another change will be a new set of checks on the previously unfettered power enjoyed by Mr. Bannon and the White House policy director, Stephen Miller, who oversees the implementation of the orders and who received the brunt of the internal and public criticism for the rollout of the travel ban.


Mr. Priebus bristles at the perception that he occupies a diminished perch in the West Wing pecking order compared with previous chiefs. But for the moment, Mr. Bannon remains the president’s dominant adviser, despite Mr. Trump’s anger that he was not fully briefed on details of the executive order he signed giving his chief strategist a seat on the National Security Council, a greater source of frustration to the president than the fallout from the travel ban.


This is a must read article. It's total chaos in the WH, and Trump is signing whatever they put in front of him.

11 stories from President Trumps first 100 hours that deserve more attention

THE BIG IDEA: Donald Trump is quadrupling down on his lie that millions of ballots were illegally cast in the November election. This morning he ensured that the mainstream media will spend another day focused on this issue by calling for an investigation:

That the president of the United States is challenging, with no credible evidence, the integrity of an election he won is extraordinarily reckless.

As Dan Balz explains this morning: “There is no benign explanation.… It is either a deliberate attempt to undermine faith in the democratic process, an exhortation to those who favor new restrictions on access to the ballot box or the worrisome trait of someone with immense power willing to make wild statements without any credible evidence. By repeating as president what he had said as a candidate, for whatever purpose, Trump is now striking at the foundation of a democratic society. This is yet another example of Trump being willing to cast doubt on information, individuals or institutions that he believes threaten his legitimacy, challenge his authority or question his actions.... This is not a debate about the size of the crowd at last week’s presidential inauguration. That is a piddling controversy compared to his claim that the election system overseen by the states is somehow riddled with fraud. Trump prefers his own reality, even if that damages the very system of government atop which he now sits.”

-- While Trump’s claims of voter fraud are certainly newsworthy, they are also a distraction from an aggressive effort by this new White House to quickly transform the government and dramatically change the direction of public policy in ways that will directly impact tens of millions of Americans.

As John Mitchell famously said when he became Richard Nixon’s attorney general, “Watch what we do, not what we say.”

That maxim is truer now more than ever.

We’ve all been drinking from a fire hose since noon last Friday. To help you not lose track, here are 11 moves by Team Trump that would lead the news in any ordinary time but have gotten relatively little public attention:












This is a good recap of most of the major items we need to keep on top of since Friday.

I also encourage each of you to do your own research on at least one of these topics. Trying to follow everything taking place all at once can be overwhelming at times like this. Sometimes it's easier to take on one topic, master that topic and be a champion for that cause.

Investigators on the Trump-Russia Beat Should Talk to This Man

Last week, the Senate Intelligence Committee announced it was commencing an investigation of Russian hacking during the 2016 campaign that would include an examination of connections between Russia and the Trump camp. And a veiled but public exchange between Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), a member of the committee, and FBI Director James Comey during a hearing on January 10 suggested the FBI has collected information on possible ties between Trump associates and Russians and may still be probing this matter. So with subpoena-wielding investigators on this beat, here's a suggestion: The gumshoes ought to talk to an American from Belarus named Sergei Millian, who has boasted of close ties to Trump and who has worked with an outfit the FBI suspected of being a Russian intelligence front. If they haven't already.

Millian, who is in his late 30s and won't say when he came to the United States or how he obtained US citizenship, is an intriguing and mysterious figure with a curious connection to Trump. He is president of the Russian-American Chamber of Commerce in the USA (RACC) and the owner of a translation service. The RACC, a nonprofit that Millian started in Atlanta in 2006 and that has survived on shoestring budgets, advocates closer commercial ties between Russia and the United States and assists US firms looking to do business in Russia. In 2009, the group called for the US Congress "to foster necessary political changes to produce a healthier economic environment" and grant permanent normal trade relations status to Russia. Its website notes that it "facilitates cooperation for U.S. members with the Russian Government, Russian Regional Administrations, U.S. Consulates in Russia, Chambers of Commerce in Russia, and corporate leaders from CIS [Commonwealth of Independent States] countries."

The Russian-American Chamber of Commerce's 2011 tax return reported the group was based in an apartment in Astoria, Queens, where Millian lived—though the group's letterhead that year listed a Wall Street address—and that year it brought in only $23,300 in contributions and grants and $14,748 in program revenue. The tax return noted that the chamber "successfully hosted four universities from Russia in New York City" and hosted a trade mission from Belarus. In 2015, Millian received a Russian award for fostering cooperation between US and Russian businesses.

On his LinkedIn page, Millian notes he is also the vice president of an outfit called the World Chinese Merchants Union Association, a group that has only a slight presence on the internet and that seems to have an address in Beijing. According to a LinkedIn post published by Millian in April 2016, he met that month in Beijing with a Chinese official and the Russian ambassador to the Republic of San Marino to discuss industrial and commercial cooperation between China and Russia.


In the 2016 interview, Millian asserted that Trump would be good for Russia if elected president. Trump, he noted, would improve US relations with Russia and lift economic sanctions imposed by Washington on Russia. He said Trump was interested in doing business in Russia: "I don't want to reveal [Trump's] position, but he is keeping Moscow in his sights and is waiting for an appropriate time." Millian added, "In general Trump has a very positive attitude to Russians, because he sees them as clients for his business. Incidentally, he has done many projects with people from the Russian-language diaspora. For example, Trump SoHo in New York with billionaire Tamir Sapir." (Sapir, who died in 2014, was an American billionaire real estate developer from the former Soviet republic of Georgia.)


Sergei Millian, left, pictured with Donald Trump and Jorge Perez Millian's Facebook page

Donald Trump's Hotel Bans Press For The Inauguration, Raising First Amendment Concerns

President-elect Donald Trump’s Washington, D.C., hotel is banning reporters from its premises during inauguration week, according to Politico’s Daniel Lippman. The move underscores the incoming president’s personal hostility toward the press and raises First Amendment issues, as the hotel space is leased by the president-elect from the federal government.

Throughout the 2016 campaign and into the transition, Trump has made his hostility to the press a centerpiece of his political strategy. Trump declared war on the press, which included mocking specific reporters as “neurotic,” “dumb,” and a “waste of time.” He retreated to softball interviews during the final weeks of the campaign with largely friendly interviewers, Fox News, and fringe media. Since the election, Trump has lashed out at The New York Times several times for its “BAD coverage.” Trump’s own incoming press secretary also admitted that he threatened to remove a journalist who was trying to ask the president-elect a question, and prominent Trump supporter and former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich applauded the threat, calling it “a signal, frankly, to all the other reporters that there are going to be real limits” for proper behavior.

Moreover, as Politico notes, Trump’s D.C. hotel is under “a 60-year lease with the federal General Services Administration, which owns the property.” Given that arrangement, a blanket ban on the press raises First Amendment concerns. Trump’s D.C. hotel has also been an ethical sticking point during Trump’s transition, as some in Congress have raised concerns about a conflict of interest between the president-elect’s business interests and his administration’s influence over the General Services Administration.

From Politico’s January 18 article:

The Trump International Hotel in Washington is banning the media from its premises during inauguration week.

“Media is not allowed in this week in respect of the privacy of our guests,” Patricia Tang, the hotel’s director of sales and marketing wrote in an email.

A POLITICO reporter attempted to enter the hotel Wednesday morning for a previously scheduled breakfast meeting but was stopped at the door. He then identified himself as a journalist and was told “media” was not allowed.

President-elect Donald Trump and his three adult children own the project after winning a 2012 bid to redevelop D.C.’s Old Post Office. They have a 60-year lease with the federal General Services Administration, which owns the property.

A POLITICO reporter attempted to enter the hotel Wednesday morning for a previously scheduled breakfast meeting but was stopped at the door. He then identified himself as a journalist and was told “media” was not allowed.


I found a bit more on this story today.

Reached for comment by CNNMoney, Tang made it clear at the outset that she didn't want to wade further into the matter.

"We really don't have any comment," she said by phone. "I mean, we gave all we're going to say, which is that we protect the privacy of our guests."

In his own story about the encounter, Lippman pointed out that Trump and three of his adult children have a 60-year lease on the hotel with the federal General Services Administration, the result of a winning bid to redevelop D.C.'s Old Post Office.

That lease stipulates that the public should enjoy access to the building's historic areas "subject to such reasonable rules and time restrictions as Tenant may formulate from time to time and as approved in writing by Landlord," although there is an exception for public safety.
When CNNMoney tried to ask whether a ban on the press might violate the hotel's lease, Tang grew agitated.

"Sir, you're not listening to what I'm saying. I'm hanging up now," she said, and then did so.


California Woman Wearing Headscarf Attacked As 'Hijab Wearing B*tch'

Vandals targeted a California woman who wears a headscarf for health reasons in a Monday attack, smashing the rear window of her car and leaving a note that read "Hijab Wearing Bitch."

After returning from a hike in Fremont, California, Nicki Pancholy found the rear window of her car broken, her purse stolen, and a note that read “Hijab Wearing Bitch. This is our nation, now get the F— out,” according to a report by Bay Area news site SFGate.

Pancholy told SFGate that she has lupus and wears a bandanna to protect her scalp from the sun. She said that she is not Muslim but was "scared" to return to the area after the attack.


Welcome to Trump's America.
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