Furious Friday Reads: Delta and Don

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Waxing and waning by Otto Dix

Good Morning Sky Dancers!

I woke up to the most oddly colored sky today as Hurricane Delta spins away in the Gulf of Mexico. Jim Cantore has been spotted in Beaux Bridge and that’s way west of here. We’ll get some bad weather when it rolls closer to us but right now we’ve just got this breeze and a yellowish tinged cloud cover.

So the crazy go nuts at the White House is getting crazier, more gone, and nuttier.  We all knew these last few months of the Trumpist regime would be unlike anything we could imagine.  Harvard Historian Heather Cox Richardson keeps an active blog on her thoughts on history. On Thursday, she posted this:

On October 8, 2020, the President of the United States, Donald J. Trump, appears to be melting down. Over the course of the day, he has called for the imprisonment of his Democratic opponent, Joe Biden, as well as his own predecessor, President Barack Obama, and called Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris a “monster” and a “communist.”
 
This morning, he announced that he would not take part in the planned October 15 town hall debate if it were turned into an on-line event. But then, after Biden said he was willing to postpone the debate so Trump could take part, said he would participate in another debate on October 22.
 
He released a video addressed to seniors, who are leaving him in droves, calling them “my favorite people in the world,” and speculated that he could continue to hold rallies as early as this weekend, before his quarantine period is over. He called into the Fox News Channel twice, ranting. Of his bout with coronavirus, he said: “I’m back because I’m a perfect physical specimen and I’m extremely young.”
 
He is erratic enough that tomorrow, the House will begin to consider a bill seeking to enforce the 25th Amendment to the Constitution, designed to provide an exit ramp for a president who is experiencing physical or mental impairments that make him unable to lead the nation. The bill, advanced by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, will not pass, but it will keep focus on what seems to be the president’s precarious mental state.
Vice President Mike Pence, who was supposed to go to Indiana to vote tomorrow, after campaigning in Arizona, has cancelled his scheduled events and is headed back to Washington, D. C.
 
Everything emerging from the White House today is murky and confused, but there is one event that is crystal clear: the FBI announced today it has stopped a terrorist plot to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer and put her “on trial” for treason. Six men have been charged in the plot, and are now facing life in prison if convicted. Another seven have been charged with planning to storm the state capitol building and start a civil war. They face up to 20 years in prison.
 
This afternoon, Whitmer called out Trump for refusing to denounce such domestic terrorists. At last week’s debate with Biden, Trump told the white supremacist neo-fascist Proud Boys to “Stand back and stand by.” In April, after Whitmer shut down the state to combat coronavirus, Trump tweeted: “LIBERATE MICHIGAN!” and at least three of the thirteen men now charged were among those who entered the state’s senate chamber with guns on April 30 to protest Whitmer’s stay-at-home orders.
 
Tonight, rather than express sympathy with Whitmer or denounce the terrorists, Trump attacked Whitmer on Twitter. Attorney General William Barr, who has been out of the public eye since last the coronavirus super spreader event at the White House Rose Garden in honor of Amy Coney Barrett, Trump’s nominee to take the seat of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court, has not commented.
 
 
s-l1000

Widow by Otto Dix


It’s so bad that Nancy Pelosi is bringing up the 25th Amendment as a way to discuss his overall mental, emotional, and physical health.  She has no power to remove him this way but it starts a conversation.

Since Monday he has blown up negotiations for additional federal coronavirus relief by tweet and spread false claims comparing the virus to the flu.

He also attacked his some of his closest Cabinet allies during a Fox News interview for not pursuing groundless accusations of criminality by Joe Biden and Barack Obama.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Thursday openly addressed an issue that even White House aides are said to be speculating about: Has the president’s judgment been affected by his illness and the medication he is taking to treat it? And is it so bad that he is unable to fulfill his duties?

Pelosi in her remarks to reporters Thursday went on to hint that lawmakers in the House might create a commission that would allow Congress to intervene and create a body to remove the president from office under the 25th Amendment of the US Constitution.

The 25th Amendment was ratified by Congress in 1967 to ensure conditions for a smooth transfer of power if the president becomes incapacitated. It was a response to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

Section 4 of the amendment is most relevant to current circumstances, with a clause allowing for the removal of presidents from office against their will if they are unable to fulfill their duties.

Under the section, the decision to remove a president unable to do the job can be made by “the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive departments or of such other body as Congress may by law provide.”

With the US presidential election only weeks away, the prospect of adamantly loyal Vice President Mike Pence cooperating is remote. Likewise any of Trump’s Cabinet.

And if they were to do so, the removal would require a supermajority in both houses of Congress to remain in force if challenged by Trump.

But that leaves open the possibility of Congress by law creating another body to try to achieve the same goal.

Newborn Baby on Hands by Otto Dix

Harvard Historian Heather Richardson Cox runs a blog on her Facebook page and frequently gives lectures and blogs on a variety of history things.  Yesterday, she went over on Trump.

October 8, 2020 (Thursday)

I’m going to be brief tonight, folks, but here are the main stories I’m watching:

On October 8, 2020, the President of the United States, Donald J. Trump, appears to be melting down. Over the course of the day, he has called for the imprisonment of his Democratic opponent, Joe Biden, as well as his own predecessor, President Barack Obama, and called Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris a “monster” and a “communist.”

This morning, he announced that he would not take part in the planned October 15 town hall debate if it were turned into an on-line event. But then, after Biden said he was willing to postpone the debate so Trump could take part, said he would participate in another debate on October 22.
He released a video addressed to seniors, who are leaving him in droves, calling them “my favorite people in the world,” and speculated that he could continue to hold rallies as early as this weekend, before his quarantine period is over. He called into the Fox News Channel twice, ranting. Of his bout with coronavirus, he said: “I’m back because I’m a perfect physical specimen and I’m extremely young.”

He is erratic enough that tomorrow, the House will begin to consider a bill seeking to enforce the 25th Amendment to the Constitution, designed to provide an exit ramp for a president who is experiencing physical or mental impairments that make him unable to lead the nation. The bill, advanced by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, will not pass, but it will keep focus on what seems to be the president’s precarious mental state.

Vice President Mike Pence, who was supposed to go to Indiana to vote tomorrow, after campaigning in Arizona, has cancelled his scheduled events and is headed back to Washington, D. C.

Everything emerging from the White House today is murky and confused, but there is one event that is crystal clear: the FBI announced today it has stopped a terrorist plot to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer and put her “on trial” for treason. Six men have been charged in the plot, and are now facing life in prison if convicted. Another seven have been charged with planning to storm the state capitol building and start a civil war. They face up to 20 years in prison.

This afternoon, Whitmer called out Trump for refusing to denounce such domestic terrorists. At last week’s debate with Biden, Trump told the white supremacist neo-fascist Proud Boys to “Stand back and stand by.” In April, after Whitmer shut down the state to combat coronavirus, Trump tweeted: “LIBERATE MICHIGAN!” and at least three of the thirteen men now charged were among those who entered the state’s senate chamber with guns on April 30 to protest Whitmer’s stay-at-home orders.

Tonight, rather than express sympathy with Whitmer or denounce the terrorists, Trump attacked Whitmer on Twitter. Attorney General William Barr, who has been out of the public eye since last the coronavirus super spreader event at the White House Rose Garden in honor of Amy Coney Barrett, Trump’s nominee to take the seat of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court, has not commented.

There’s even more crazy things from this morning.

From the New York Times:

Trump Lashes Out at His Aides With Calls to Indict Political Rivals  —  The pressure on his top administration officials to take action came as President Trump bristled at the restraints of his illness.

From Oliver Darcy  at CNN:

Coughing Trump tells Hannity he’s healthy and ready to hold rallies  —   Recuperating from the coronavirus and plunging in the polls, President Trump is retreating to his safe spaces: Twitter, Fox, and rallies.  —  On Thursday Trump started and ended his day on Fox.

the-nun

Nun by Otto Dix

And then there’s the entire craziness of a group of young, white male, right wing extremists going after the Michigan governor. This terrorist cell of incels and your basic white male grievance gone violent is just about as Trumpy as you can get.  NBC reports they are likely tied to the so-called “boogaloo” movement.

Several of the six men charged in federal court Thursday with a conspiracy to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer have histories of anti-government organizing, as well as interest in countering what they saw as an “uprising” against President Donald Trump, according to their online profiles and comments.

In addition, several of the seven men facing separate state terrorism charges for their activity with a group called the Wolverine Watchmen also posted pro-Trump and anti-government content.

The men have not yet appeared in court or entered pleas.

A senior federal law enforcement official said federal agents found that the group of seven tied to the Wolverine Watchmen believes in the “boogaloo” movement, which is largely dedicated to eradicating the government and killing law enforcement officers. Their social media profiles showed connections to a wide variety of known anti-government groups.

Around the country, self-described members of the boogaloo movement have committed acts of violence and killed police officers in recent months, often in attempts to ignite what they believe will be a second civil war. Authorities said a California man accused of killing a police officer and a federal agent in June scrawled the word “Boog” in blood on the hood of a car during a standoff with police. Federal agents arrested two other members of the boogaloo movement whom they accused of offering to work with the terrorist group Hamas last month.

Still Life with Widow’s Veil by Otto Dix

According to the Detroit Free Press the real intent of this militia that called themselves the “Wolverine Watchmen” was to start a civil war.  The name alone is a disturbing mix of two comic book realities.  Let’s be real though.  These armed “militias” are really just armed terrorists. We always make special names up when it comes to white men being super bad.  They’re not misunderstood.  They’re not lone wolves.  They are armed, dangerous TERRORISTS.

The Wolverine Watchmen militia group didn’t just plot to kidnap Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, but they were on a mission to attack the state Capitol and target police officers at their homes as part of a broader mission to instigate a civil war,  authorities said Thursday in announcing felony charges against 13 militia members accused in a sensational case of domestic terrorism.

Attorney General Dana Nessel referred to the accused as “extremists” who are hoping to recruit new members “by seizing on a moment of civil unrest” to wreak havoc on the country. She identified the militia group as the Wolverine Watchmen, whose members are accused of, among other things, conducting surveillance outside Whitmer’s vacation residence, using code language and encrypted messages to throw off police and planting a bomb under a bridge to divert law enforcement.

“There has been a disturbing increase in anti-government rhetoric and the re-emergence of groups that embrace extremist ideologies,”  Nessel said at a press conference Thursday. “This is more than just political disagreement or passionate advocacy, some of these groups’ mission is simply to create chaos and inflict harm upon others.”

I continue to wonder why the remaining jerks in the Republican Party don’t ever say anything about this.  Trump will be on Tucker Carlson tonight and that is bound to be an even worse display of idiocy and insanity than we’ve seen this week.

Frau Doctor by Otton Dix

Here’s what we missed besides normalcy and sanity.  The Atlantic‘s writer Edward Issac Dovere  interviews Hillary Clinton. “Hillary Clinton Says She Was Right All Along. The biggest factors she blames for her loss—disinformation, Vladimir Putin, and America’s deep political divide—will still be problems even if Trump loses, the 2016 Democratic presidential nominee warns.”

In many ways, Clinton feels vindicated by how the Trump presidency has played out, and by what Americans have learned about him over the past four years—including the recent revelation that he paid just $750 in federal income taxes in 2017. That “was even worse than I thought it was,” she said. But being right is a small solace. She was sitting in her home in New York, speaking with me over Zoom for a conversation you can hear in full on the latest episode of The Ticket. Chappaqua is not Washington, D.C. She’s not in the middle of the reelection campaign she’d like to be running right now. She pointed out more than once that she won the popular vote in 2016, even if she didn’t win the Electoral College, and she mentioned former FBI Director James Comey’s letter in the final week of the race seeming to reopen the investigation into her (and then Comey’s announcement that nothing had come of it). And to those who wish she would just go away? She thinks they feel a bit guilty, she told me: They don’t want to admit that she was right about Trump.

What she’s hoping for over the next four years: Biden wins and gets rid of Trump, Vice President Kamala Harris helps reset some of the American political expectations for women, and Mark Zuckerberg—whom she compared to the sorcerer’s apprentice, losing control of his creation in a way that has done grave damage around the world—ends up facing new restrictions. She’s also hoping that she can step back from politics a bit more.

You can listen to their conversation at the link above.  I’m not sure why I went over to Otto Dix’s dark side.  I almost used some of his World  War 1 etchings which are mostly every one as skeletons but that was like way too dark.  But, maybe it’s just the lighting that the weather has brought to my desk.  He’s got more styles than Picasso and was just about as prolific!

So, I’m going to trying to get stuff battened down around here before the winds start up around supper time.  I’m also going to go eat my favorite comfort food which is my grandmother’s recipe for mac and cheese. Please, please take care!  Let us know you’re okay.  Thank you for all the Donations!  We’ll be able to keep the doors open another year!!

What’s on your reading and blogging list today?


28 Comments on “Furious Friday Reads: Delta and Don”

  1. dakinikat says:

    My biggest worry today was about not having the power to get this posted and done but so far it’s really quiet here.

    I hope you have a good weekend!
    xoxo

    Here’s a really odd story from Mississippi. At least it’s not about priests and little boys! but wow!

    • Enheduanna says:

      And they replaced a high school chaplain with this guy because HE was sexting students….

      But at least thank goddess they performed a ritual afterward to sanctify the altar! (/s)

    • Enheduanna says:

      Good luck Dak! I hope Delta poops out before it hits land. The Dix paintings are so interesting and perfect for a gloomy October day.

  2. Pat Johnson says:

    The POTUS is a madman! A crazy, out of control lunatic who needs to be removed.

    Blame on the drugs he is currently on, blame it on his standing in the polls, hell, blame it on the weather. Either way this man is unfit to lead and should be removed for our sakes as well as his own.

    I have never seen such crazy behavior – even when Nixon was trapped – as has been displayed by Trump.

    It’s a mess and needs to stop. We have no idea what his next move will be but he is sure out of control as of today.

  3. MsMass says:

    I just watched Pelosi on cspan- explains some things about the 25th.
    https://www.c-span.org/video/?476814-1/speaker-pelosi-unveils-legislation-create-presidential-capacity-commission

    Stay safe as you can down in nola. I’m making Mac n cheese tonight too.

  4. quixote says:

    Pelosi has stood up to the Dump on several occasions. That’s good.

    She’s been consistent in wanting the House to work on real legislation, so to speak, and not things like impeachment which will just die in the Senate. (All the real legislation dies in the Senate, too, but, well, whatever.) The voters will decide has been her mantra. It took *a lot* of popular feeling for her to start impeachment hearings at all.

    Now she’s working on a (highly necessary!) Congressional method of applying the 25th Amendment, even though it has no chance of passing now, to keep the conversation going.

    So what changed? Given the Dump’s crimes, she could have been doing an impeachment a week for the past year and a half. It would have provided some essential “conversations”!

    She’s done some things for the House to provide the check on Trump it’s supposed to. Way less than she could have, as evidenced by this latest move. Why didn’t this start as soon as she had a majority?

  5. quixote says:

    I hope this storm is nothing worse than an ordinary storm for everyone in its path!

    • dakinikat says:

      I am so worried about all the folks in Lake Charles and the surrounding parishes! It’s strong but it is moving fast! They’ve got blue tarps instead of solid roofs at the moment!

  6. bostonboomer says:

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  8. bostonboomer says:

    This is great.

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