Subtle as ever, Donald Trump sent a clear signal to former aides with his unexpected pardon of Lewis “Scooter” Libby on Friday afternoon: If you cover my ass when the special counsel asks questions, and you too can expect presidential clemency. “I don’t know Mr. Libby, but for years I have heard that he has […]
Politics involve action and reaction. The Reagan era led to the punk rock movement and a new generation of liberals. Bill Clinton’s election led to a conservative Congress, but the ensuing Democratic push-back gave us the golden era of the late 1990s. In today’s clip, taken from Chris Rock’s new Netflix special, the inimitable comedian […]
You know things are out-of-control awful and weird in Washington when you think wistfully of the Bush years from time to time. You can shake it off and recall the horrors of life with George W. Bush and his twisted vice president Dick Cheney, but there is something still more ominous about Trump and Pence. […]
The Russian collusion saga continues apace. On Saturday, the New York Times reported that Donald Trump Jr. agreed to meet with Kremlin-connected lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya after he was promised compromising information on Hillary Clinton during the 2016 presidential campaign. Paul J. Manafort and Jared Kushner also attended the meeting.
A little-noticed inspector general report, released in 2013, depicts Trump appointee James Renne as a central player in an anti-gay purge at the Office of Special Counsel during the Bush administration. The report found that employees were targeted for no legitimate reason, pointing to “facts which reflect that…Mr. Renne may have been motivated…by a negative personal attitude toward homosexuality and individuals whose orientation is homosexual.”
Having opposed President Obama’s initiative to punish Assad following that attack, Donald Trump clearly has no idea what to do now that his missiles have landed in Syria. Nor do Congressional Republicans, whose enthusiastic support for Trump’s action today rings hollow for anyone who remembers how they rejected Obama’s request to authorize military force in 2013.
When Congress returned home, Republicans got clobbered at town hall meetings. These scenes made me check up on our democracy’s wellness. Bad news: The body politic’s muscles got flabby in the last 16-17 years. Blood pressure up, and too many Cheetos, not enough kale.
Alan Bersin, who spent almost five years as President Clinton’s “border czar,” says a border wall won’t address the real challenges confronting the U.S. border enforcement system: hopelessly understaffed immigration courts and lawlessness and poverty in Central America.
During his presidency, Obama greatly expanded the U.S. deportation machine, overseeing a higher number of border patrols than any previous administration. That deportation machine is now being handed to Trump, whose administration is aggressively delivering on his fascist and white supremacist campaign pledges to slam the door on refugees and migrants.
Thomas Jefferson was so dismayed by political deceptions that he coined a word for it. “Twistifications” referred to a brew of willful misinformation, tortured logic, and artful language designed to sway credulous audiences. Can President Trump get away with his multiple misdirections and twistifications for 1,460 days of intense scrutiny?
Erring on the side of recklessness comes at a high price. It undermines the constitutional rights America values most. It harms our international image. It hands a recruitment tool to terrorists. We know this now. Time to apply the lesson.
The Trump administration’s reported proposal to move the White House press briefing to a large room that can accommodate pro-Trump sycophants and propagandists is brazen and destructive. But it’s also not entirely new — the Bush administration adopted a similar strategy in 2004.
We’ve been suckered with this tax holiday scam before. In 2004, George W. Bush pulled it on us — and instead of creating jobs, the corporate tax-dodgers eliminated thousands more of our jobs! The way to know whether or not Trump’s tax holiday will benefit workers is to see if it requires that corporations actually create the thousands of good jobs promised before they get the tax break. Anything less is just another swindle.
Concerns about censorship under Trump have transformed the arcane art of saving web pages at the end of a president’s term into a crowdsourced effort with hackathons, fundraising, and pleas for help on Twitter.
16 years ago, thousands of protesters lined the inauguration parade route of the incoming Republican president. “Not my president,” they chanted. But despite the enormity of the rally, it was largely ignored. Instead, pundits marveled over how George W. Bush “filled out the suit.”
Obama pledged in his 2008 presidential campaign to close the military prison, but his efforts have been blocked by mostly Republican opposition in Congress. The Democratic president has instead reduced the population there by transferring prisoners to other countries.
Endorsing the National Popular Vote would be a critical first step toward reshaping our electoral system. Reform from the top will encourage future Presidents, all elected by majority, to address the other distortions to our democracy, including gerrymandering, voter suppression laws, and the unfettered flow of money into politics.
Trump made scores of promises he could not possibly fulfill. The biggest was the same one fascist strongmen always offer: transcendent national renewal, built upon the cleansing of dangerous untermenschen from the body politic.
What is necessary moving forward, what is essential if the future can yet be won, is a politics that can win the world as it is. There are no politics that can combat ethno-nationalism but the politics of class solidarity