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  1. #5281

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    There’s something that just doesn’t feel right about this. Joe Biden didn’t earn it, he didn’t really even campaign. He thought was going to lose, you could see it. He ran a losing campaign. So 10 days after the election, how’s he ahead? #WattersWords
    Roger forever

  2. #5282

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    It is difficult to explain to people that have fallen under the adoration for a cult-figure how their "hero" is very repugnant to a lot of people. I lived it over and over in Venezuela. The people that were for Chavez (and I knew very few) could not accept explanations about how off-putting he was.
    Face it. It's the apocalypse.

  3. #5283

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    Nick Miroff
    Unreal-- DHS says it temporarily put FEMA chief Peter Gaynor in charge of the department Nov 14 so he could change the order of succession to make Chad Wolf eligible for acting secretary job. Then Wolf re-issued all the orders that were under legal cloud

    A reminder DHS was created in no small part to project stability and competence to an American public traumatized by 9/11. Under Trump the department has had 5 different leaders, only two confirmed by senate, and nearly all of its top jobs are filled by acting figures or vacant

    Here's how DHS explains the making of the sausage: "Once Mr. Gaynor’s order was executed, it superseded any authority Mr. Gaynor may have had under the Federal Vacancy Reform Act and confirmed Acting Secretary Wolf’s authority to continue to serve as the Acting Secretary."
    “No matter how cynical I get, I just can't keep up.” – Lily Tomlin.

  4. #5284

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    Ricardo Duran Burner Flag of MexicoTurkey (bird)
    I am crying.

    "Poor Anthony" is trending on Twitter right now. Poor Anthony indeed. OAN?!

    Here are President-elect Biden's candidates for Secretary of Education per the WaPo.

    Secretary of Education
    Currently: Betsy Devos

    Under Secretary Betsy DeVos, the Education Department has rolled back some civil rights protections as well as Obama-era efforts to hold for-profit colleges accountable for poor outcomes. She’s promoted alternatives to public schools and tried to slash federal funding for education. Biden is expected to reverse all of that, with more money for K-12 and higher education, new and revived civil rights protections and a focus on racial equity.

    Biden has said he will name a public school educator as secretary of Education, a stab at DeVos, who had no experience with public schools. Many expect that to be someone from the K-12 world. Among those talked about for the job include a handful of big-city school superintendents, such as Sonja Santelises from Baltimore, Janice Jackson from Chicago or Seattle’s Denise Juneau.


    Rep. Jahana Hayes (D)
    Congresswoman from Connecticut

    Hayes, elected in 2018, is the first Black woman to represent Connecticut in Congress. She sits on the Committee on Education and Labor and has sponsored some higher education measures. Before that, she was the 2016 National Teacher of the Year.

    Lily García
    Former head of the National Education Association

    García recently stepped down as president of the National Education Association, the nation’s largest union. Before that, she was an elementary school teacher. She is friendly with incoming first lady Jill Biden, who is a community college teacher and member of the NEA.

    Tony Thurmond
    California state superintendent

    Thurmond is California’s state superintendent, where he has pushed for educational equity, a goal Biden shares. In 2018, the Los Angeles Times endorsed Thurmond, saying he has “an unwavering commitment to at-risk students and a deep understanding of the obstacles they face.”

    Randi Weingarten
    Head of the American Federation of Teachers

    Weingarten is president of the American Federation of Teachers, the second largest teacher union. She previously served as president of the union representing teachers in New York City, and was a high school teacher in Brooklyn. Nominating a labor leader could be seen as an affront to those who favor teacher evaluations and other test-based accountability measures.

    Reported by Laura Meckler.
    “No matter how cynical I get, I just can't keep up.” – Lily Tomlin.

  5. #5285

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    It's really hard to remember that he was once a highly competent man. He's charging a $20k/day base rate to the campaign for this.

    Dan Zak

    Update from U.S. district court in Williamsport, Pa., one of the Trump campaign's last stands:

    GIULIANI: “I’m not sure what 'opacity' means. It probably means you can see.”

    JUDGE BRANN: “It means you can’t.”
    Last edited by JazzNU; 11-17-2020 at 05:17 PM.

  6. #5286

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    Monica Alba @albamonica

    Here’s the full joint statement that infuriated the president so much it led him to fire Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency Dir. Krebs (bolding theirs): “There is no evidence that any voting system deleted or lost votes, changed votes, or was in any way compromised.”

    “No matter how cynical I get, I just can't keep up.” – Lily Tomlin.

  7. #5287

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    From the Shenanigans Folder:

    Chris Megerian @ChrisMegerian (LATimes Reporter)

    I noticed something strange on Twitter this morning, so I started poking around. Here’s what I found.
    It started with this tweet from the president, thanking his older sister for publicly supporting him.

    So I clicked the link to the website run by conservative commentator Wayne Dupree to read the purported statement from Elizabeth. The article had this odd disclaimer at the top.

    And then lower down, the article cites this tweet from an unverified account.

    Did the president’s 78-year-old sister join Twitter this month?

    The account tweets incessantly about cable news and disloyal Republicans

    I’ve asked a spokesman for the Trump Organization whether this is actually the president’s sister.

    But it appears that the president’s original tweet — thanking his sister for her support — was responding to a fake account that got picked up in the right-wing echo chamber.

    Here’s the answer — it’s not really the president’s sister

    So now we know that right-wing media circulated an unverified account purporting to be the president’s sister, and then the president himself shared the coverage rather than confirm that it was, in fact, his sister behind the tweets.

    June Casagrande @JuneCasagrande
    Replying to
    That's the same tactic the KGB used in the '80s to promote the lie that the USA developed HIV as a bio weapon. Plant a lie then launder it till people stop questioning its origin. Fascinating story, told in NYT "Operation Infektion" vid series.
    AJ has hope again with Biden-Harris @ResistsAj
    Replying to @ChrisMegerian and @NatashaBertrand
    He doesn't have a relationship with his sister. Read Mary Trump's book.
    Mrs. Betty Bowers @BettyBowers
    Replying to
    It's so much easier to confuse a sibling about the identity of another sibling when those siblings don't know each other because they can't stand to be in the same room together.
    “No matter how cynical I get, I just can't keep up.” – Lily Tomlin.

  8. #5288

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    As Their D.C. Days Dwindle, Ivanka and Jared Look for a New Beginning
    The end of President Trump’s time in office leaves his daughter Ivanka Trump and his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, as well-to-do refugees — but they appear to have plans in New Jersey.
    By Elizabeth Williamson
    Nov. 24, 2020
    Updated 6:23 p.m. ET

    WASHINGTON — Town officials in Bedminster, N.J., have the plans for a possible Trump family future, or at least the blueprints: a major addition to Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner’s “cottage” on the grounds of the Trump National Golf Club, four new pickleball courts, a relocated heliport, and a spa and yoga complex.

    As Manhattan awaits word of the Trump family’s return, the first daughter and her husband appear to be making preparations elsewhere: a Garden State refuge behind guarded gates, perhaps, or Florida, where President Trump is renovating his Mar-a-Lago estate.

    But New York now seems inhospitable and nowhere in their plans.

    “In an odd way, they will even have a harder time than Trump himself” in New York, said Donny Deutsch, a brand management mogul in Manhattan and no-holds-barred critic of Mr. Trump on cable TV. “He’s despicable but larger than life.”

    “Those two are the hapless minions who went along.”

    Sam Nunberg, a short-lived Trump campaign adviser, said he would never presume to offer the couple advice, but “I’m moving to Florida next year for taxes and lifestyle.”

    Wherever they alight, Ms. Trump and Mr. Kushner seem poised for a quick departure from Washington, where they always struggled to fit in. The couple had already expanded their “cottage” in New Jersey by 2,500 square feet in 2016, adding a basement and a fireplace sitting room, all documented by Ms. Trump on Instagram. The new plans before the Bedminster Township call for an expanded master bedroom, bath and dressing room, two new bedrooms, a study and a ground floor veranda, making it more comparable to the $5 million house they rent for $15,000 a month in the gilded Washington enclave of Kalorama.

    Plans also call for adding five more “cottages” of 5,000 square feet each to the property, and a recreation complex with spa treatments and a “general store.” A friend of the family said Tuesday that the renovations have been going on for awhile, but Trump representatives are set to present the plans to the township on Dec. 3.

    When Ms. Trump and Mr. Kushner moved to the nation’s capital, they had convinced many observers that they would be a moderating voice in the West Wing.

    It has been a turbulent social ride since then, captured best by their experience with the Milton Gottesman Jewish Day School of the Nation’s Capital. In 2017, the couple enrolled their elder two children in the private elementary school.

    The small student body leans heavily toward the progeny of public servants and diplomats derided by Mr. Trump as the “Deep State,” and the Kushners’ enrollment created the kind of heated divide that has trailed the Trumps over the past four years. Some parents lobbied to refuse them admission; others urged tolerance for children not guilty for what they saw as the sins of their grandfather.

    Once in, Ms. Trump and Mr. Kushner tended to violate the unspoken rule of the Washington private-school world, that parents with heavy security details keep disruption to a minimum, four parents said. At schoolwide events, the family and its entourage often occupied the front two rows, standing to greet administration well-wishers, said one irritated parent.

    Three people, including two who were present, spoke about a birthday party Mr. Kushner decided to attend with his children. He then requested the hosts’ Wi-Fi password so he could work in the living room.

    The tension came to a head this fall, after the White House event to announce Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s nomination to the Supreme Court, which featured few masks, no social distancing, a rash of coronavirus infections and the president’s subsequent hospitalization with Covid-19. With parents up in arms, school administrators approached the family about the potential exposure of students, the youngest of whom had been attending in-person classes. According to a person familiar with the discussions, talks faltered on the couple’s reluctance to answer basic questions, including when their children were last exposed to Mr. Trump.

    The family withdrew from the school on Oct. 19 and enrolled in another Jewish elementary school in the Washington suburb of Rockville, Md.

    Carolina Hurley, a White House spokeswoman, has issued the same blanket response since early this month when the Jewish Telegraphic Agency reported the children’s withdrawal: “Unnamed sources attacking a family’s decision about what is best for their kids in the middle of a pandemic is shameful. As is true for all families, schooling choices and education are deeply personal decisions and they owe no one, especially idle gossips seeking press attention, an explanation.”

    The school has stuck to its official statement as well: “Our school community has made extraordinary efforts to provide a safe and supportive learning environment during these challenging times. As is our longstanding policy, we do not discuss individual students and families.”

    So it has gone in Washington for the family, whose neighbors include the Obamas and Jeff Bezos. The Daily Mail, a gossipy tabloid, installed a lone paparazzo, Matthew D’Agostino, on the street outside the family’s house. Liberal neighbors or their guests passed the photographer’s car trading news tips, murmuring that taxpayers were footing the bill for the Secret Service to stay in a nearby apartment, dishing on which Middle Eastern diplomats were visiting the Jordanian ambassador’s house across the street.

    Mr. D’Agostino passed word to editors more interested in “full-length shots; they want the dress, the shoes, the bag,” or a photo of the cheap bottle of wine that Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, a multimillionaire, brought to dinner.

    The family’s home had once been occupied by Shirley Temple Black, the movie star turned diplomat, her presence noted on a bronze plaque. “What plaque is going to be here when they’re gone?” Mr. D’Agostino said he would wonder over a beer in his car out front. “The answer’s, like, ‘none.’”

    The home was near the family’s synagogue. Observant Jews, they would frequently walk there according to Sabbath tradition, tailed by about 15 Secret Service agents.

    “Outside the building they may be one of the most famous couples in America, but inside the synagogue they are just a young Jewish couple trying to raise their children in the Jewish tradition,” said Rabbi Levi Shemtov, the executive vice president of American Friends of Lubavitch (Chabad) and spiritual leader of their congregation, The SHUL of the Nation’s Capital in Kalorama.

    One of Ms. Trump’s contributions to Washington’s cultural community was unwitting. In 2019, a Washington conceptual artist, Jennifer Rubell, created “Ivanka Vacuuming,” in which a 16-year-old look-alike of Ms. Trump vacuumed up crumbs tossed by onlookers onto a pink carpet.

    “I truly did not intend the piece to be only a critique of her. I thought it was just as indicting of the viewer and all of us in our perception of her,” Ms. Rubell said in an interview. “I invited her to see the show. I was so naïve — I thought she would think it was kind of funny.”

    Instead, Ms. Trump tweeted: “Women can choose to knock each other down or build each other up. I choose the latter.” Conservative commentators and Ms. Trump’s brothers denounced Ms. Rubell’s work. The artist said she received death threats.

    To the artist and her colleagues, it was a turning point in Ms. Trump’s real-life persona, from perceived moderating influence to conservative culture warrior.

    By the time the 2020 campaign was in full swing, all the liberal hopes that Ms. Trump carried with her to Washington were long gone.

    “For the first time in a long time, we have a president who has called out Washington’s hypocrisy, and they hate him for it,” she declared on the White House grounds at the Republican National Convention. “Dad, people attack you for being unconventional, but I love you for being real.”

    Days before the election, she declared, “I am pro-life, and unapologetically so.”

    Such pronouncements appear to have made Manhattan re-entry all but impossible, at least for now.

    “As soon as she ditches the District of Columbia for the old pad she owns with Kushner at Trump Park Avenue in Manhattan, she’ll beg to be back on the scene,” Artnet News warned on Nov. 6. “In 2017, the art world organized a series of social media campaigns, protests, and performative actions under the banner ‘Dear Ivanka,’ urging her to push back against her father’s hateful and divisive platform. That, um, did not work.”

    Not everyone expects such turbulence. “I think she’s a wonderful, smart person, and she’s handled the situation really, really well,” Georgina Bloomberg, whose father, Michael Bloomberg, spent more than $1 billion of his fortune to defeat Mr. Trump, told The Daily Beast this month. “At the end of the day it’s her father, and she’s very quick to get a lot of criticism that she doesn’t deserve.”

    Business-wise, Ms. Trump and Mr. Kushner will not lack for options, given the Kushner family money. Two people who know the couple said Ms. Trump might be able to resurrect her jewelry and clothing brands, retargeted to her new conservative fans, but two more say that line would not sell.

    “Kushner’s in the real estate business,” Mr. Deutsch said. “You can do real estate deals, and if he’s doing anything with the Trump name he can monetize it in red areas.”

    Nobody rules out politics for Ms. Trump, either as candidate or king maker.

    “If I’m trying to keep my Senate seat or I’m running in the governor’s races in Michigan, Wisconsin or Pennsylvania, not only do I want President Trump, I want all the Trumps there,” Mr. Nunberg said.

    “I think Ivanka is able to live in two worlds: Trump-conservative populist and — I don’t say this in a derogatory way — Nikki Haley-country club-Jeb Bush Republican,” he said.

    Manhattan society is a different story. Christopher Buckley, a comic author who satirized the Trump administration in the novel “Make Russia Great Again,” said, “Washington tends to be more tolerant of fellow swamp creatures, who are continually in and out of favor.”

    That does not extend to “Manhattan, where ‘in’ and ‘out’ lists are sacred tablets,” he added, concluding, “There might be more Grubhub than La Grenouille in their dining future.”

    Kitty Bennett contributed research.
    “No matter how cynical I get, I just can't keep up.” – Lily Tomlin.

  9. #5289

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    Trying to think of the best place to put this. Mayor Dinkins passed yesterday and Joy Reid spent time talking about him, but also about Rudy and him. This is a quick history lesson on Rudy, the original Trump. Please watch the video.

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