No Shows

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So, the 2 funniest stories of last week feel oddly connected.  First, we have Trump hosting a White House dinner for College Football Champs, the Clemson Tigers, and feeding them fast food, which…I mean there is just no way that wasn’t going to turn into a big national joke.  Then the very next day, you have news coming out that Trump tried to circumvent Nancy Pelosi by inviting House Democrats to lunch, but like the weird kid in class throwing a birthday party, no one showed up.  Now, the obvious reason behind that is that the Dems are making a show of solidarity, and the fact is that what Trump wants is unreasonable, and no one wants to give it to him.  But a part of me wants to believe that no one showed up because they didn’t want Trump feeding them leftover Big Macs and Whoppers.  Best case scenario, Trump orders an entirely new batch of fast food.  I know he says it’s because he doesn’t have a kitchen staff during the shutdown, but let’s be real:  It’s no great secret that Trump loves him some fast food.  He must love that he has any kind of excuse to mow down on that greasy, artery clogging goodness.

Mexican Standoff

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So, Donald Trump is once again threatening to go to war with the Democrats should they seek to investigate him come January, which is for 1: Super shady (I mean, how guilty does someone look when you threaten retaliation for just looking around and asking questions), and for 2: Weird.  I say weird because he’s threatening to declassify damaging information about the Dems, but if he has such damaging information, why wouldn’t he just go ahead and declassify it?  I mean, he takes every opportunity to call the Dems criminals and monsters who want to destroy the country, if he had actual evidence to support that allegation or just something to make them look as bad as he wants them to look, I’d think he’d jump at the opportunity to make it public.  There isn’t a person alive who could convince me that he’s just being discreet, or that Trump weighs broader implications of such an action, because of COURSE HE DOESN’T.  He keeps trying to find ways to accuse his political rivals of treason! Trump doesn’t want balance, he wants an uncontested narrative. So yeah, not convinced he has some bombshell documents that will dismantle the Democrats.  The fact that Democrats don’t seem even remotely unsettled, unlike Trump, who seems near constantly unsettled, also speaks to that hypothesis.

Placing Blame

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There was a point when I was scrolling through news stories the other day, where there were 3 stories in a row of Donald Trump blaming the Democrats for something.  Some of those claims made zero sense.  I’m pretty sure the Stock Market isn’t cowering because it’s concerned that the Democrats are going to pick on Trump.  That’s just not the reason that the bottom line drops 600 points.  But it really reflects the sensibilities that Trump is ingraining into himself.  We saw him do it with the media since the days of his campaign, to where it became a kneejerk reaction to blame the media for any problem facing his administration.  Now it’s the Democrats, the party of crime, who seek to aid the invasion of our country with immigrants and destroy the stock market.  Because that who the man is.  It’s the man he was 30 years ago when he was committing tax fraud with his dad, and it’s the man he’ll be when New York is refusing to give him property for his Presidential Museum (can you even imagine what that is going to look like?)

The Reasonable Side

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I’m kind of tired of being told how naïve and dangerous a moderate left ideology is compared to extreme right ideology.  If I vote anything other than Trump Republican, I’m often accused by holier than thou conservatives that I’m voting for crime and weakness.  There is this idea on the right that if I’m not for an expensive border wall and the elimination of birthright citizenship and asylum seeking, that I’m totally in favor of being invaded by another country.  That’s not to say that the left doesn’t have their own problem with imposing straw man arguments on Republicans.  No side is without their own respective bogeymen, but it’s the Republican Bogeymen that actually seem to be the ones running things on their side.  I just feel like I’m not necessarily the one that needs to take a step back and actually listening to what the people I’m voting for are actually saying.  Take Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT).  He supports dismantling federal programs for education and interstate highways, and things unless those are removed, the Left will start a Civil War.  This isn’t me reading into vague comments or twisting context.  He actually said those things at a Lawyer’s convention.  You can watch the speech.  And yet I’m the one who’s unreasonable because I want background checks on guns and thinks we should help desperate people from other countries?

The Party of Crime

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I feel like I need to start off by saying that not too long ago, the normal etiquette among opposing political factions, at least in the open, was respectful disagreement.  At worst, you had some personal mudslinging while calling the opposing party misguided or stupid.  But partisan opposition has taken a really terrible, really unfortunate left turn.  Now you have the President of the United States calling his political opponents criminals.  At a rally in West Virginia, he actually branded the Democrats “the Party of Crime.”  It’s an alarming precedent.  It’s an alarming precedent, and an ironic one.  I mean, how can Trump, with a straight face, call the Democrats the “party of crime”, when all the arrests being made seem to be Republicans and their employees, including people who worked DIRECTLY under him.  Let’s not forget that he himself is currently being investigated for obstructing justice and collusion with a hostile foreign power to undermine an election…I’m pretty sure those are all crimes.  I suppose it could be argued that he’s trying to shift the conversation, but it’s a little too easy to make the point that calling Democrats the criminals doesn’t fit with the ACTUAL facts.

Who Are the Real Nazis?

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Donald Trump, Jr. is a true to life comedy movie villain.  Very specifically, he’s the douchey guy with slick backed hair, who thinks he’s clever, suave and charming (usually without actually being any of those things), and he’s always pushing around the little guy with a doofy grin on his face.  You get the feeling he’s pushed around a lot of employees at ski resorts.  So when Don Jr. attempts to wax intellectual on basically anything, there is usually a little bit of humor to be found.  Don Jr. isn’t exactly a Rhodes Scholar, and frequently says ludicrously unfounded things based on other equally unfounded things he’s read on the internet.  This week, while at a movie premiere (a movie made by recent Trump pardonee, Dinesh D’Souza) Don Jr. claimed that based on history (history, he added, as only truly informed people such as himself are aware), it’s really the Democrats who are more Nazi like, not his father and his administration!  Now, any reasonable person looking into political similarities between modern day politics and the Nazi regime will be able to find the answer to that question, because as it turns out, while an often contested and argued academic field, it’s not a terribly secretive one.  And if you want to find out exactly what the Nazis stood for, you can find the Program of the German Workers Party, written by Adolf Hitler in 1920, in all it’s glorious text.  I encourage you to take a look at it sometime and see whose views are more closely mirrored by a German despot.

The Real Russian Conspiracy

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Oh Donald.  Donald, Donald, Donald!  It is truly a bold move to come out and suggest that the Russians would be meddling in our midterms, but they would be interfering on behalf of the Democrats.  I mean, honestly, it’s hilariously stupid, and I have to imagine that even your base will have to do some pretty impressive mental gymnastics to follow you on that logic, but I know they’ll get there.  They manage to follow you no matter where you go.  But this one has the sort of Donald Trump flair that we’ve come to know and hate.  It’s truly a “You” move.  Suggesting that Russia for some reason wants you and yours out of the picture is delightfully stupid.  Putin has said, very vocally, only days ago, how happy he is to have you doing what you’re doing. You say you’re the toughest President on Russia, but the reality is you watch the government around you be tough on Russia, and complain that they’re destroying your budding relationship with a monster.  But keep trying to make your sell.  I mean, it’s actually even kind of devious on your part.  If, by some magical miracle, the Dems have their blue wave, and knock it out of the park during midterms, you’ve started early in building your conspiracy!

Candidate Crisis

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The GOP seems to have a Nazi problem.  Seriously. At least 3 congressional GOP candidates have openly admitted to being white supremacists with Nazi and neo-Nazi sympathies.  There was a period of time when  finding that kind of information out would have been something to end a political career.  It feels like several giant leaps backward that it’s being used to kickstart them.  To their credit, the mainstream Republican party does see this as an inconvenience.  They’ve been doing their level best to keep their image away from that ideology, and disavowing these upstarts openly, but it’s still unfortunate to note that these candidates seem to be gaining momentum rather than stalling out.  But what happens when these outliers become less abnormal?

The Real Russian Collusion

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So the Republicans and Right Wing Media outlets are really trying to push this narrative that the Russians colluded with the Democrats.  That THAT is the real story and not potential collusion with Trump. I mean they make a good point.  I mean, only by working with the Russians could they have tanked the 2016 elections so hard.  It’s a damn goofy claim that flies in the face evidence and…you know, reality?  I mean, I’m willing to take the word of right-wing armchair philosophers over a vast network of non-partisan intelligence gatherers whose job and expertise involve this very thing.