Daily Check-In 10/01/2018

Monday, October 1st and the weekend.

 

THE RUSSIAN INVESTIGATION

 

SCOTUS & #METOO

Once again, I’m not breaking this down into several sections, but here’s what happneed over the weekend and into Monday.

Reports came out that White House Counsel Don McGahn, after working with Senate Republicans, gave the FBI instructions on who they could interview, about what they could interview, and how long they had to work.  This leaked to the press in a heartbeat.  There’s confusion as to whether the FBI would follow this or not, but it sounds like the plausible reaction from the FBI was to tell the White House to pound sand.

Shit got even more confusing on Sunday as multiple reports came out that several people who wanted to talk to the FBI either weren’t getting called, or were getting stuck in a runaround.  The Dotard sent out a tweet claiming that there were no such instructions given to the FBI, but no written orders came.

On Monday, Trump repeated the same thing, and we’re getting reports that more and more people are getting interviewed.  One of the newest pieces to come out is that a mutual friend of Brett Kavanaugh and Deborah Ramirez named Kerry Berchem received text messages from Brett where Brett asked a mutual friend, Karen Yarasavage, to go on the record in his defense before the New Yorker story came out.  Karen and Kerry also talked about how uncomfortable Deborah was around Brett at a wedding for a mutual friend back in 1997.

These texts messages could be innocuous pleas for help, or they could represent witness tampering.

Meanwhile, that turtle-looking-mother-fucker Mitch McConnell is trying to force a vote through this week.  It could be bluster, but it is the kind of evil shit he’s famous for.

Also, don’t be surprised if something big happens by Wednesday.  Why Wednesday?  Not sure, but Wednesday sounds like the best day for a withdraw or replacement.

 

 

Translation: he’s obviously guilty and the White House is terrified of The WH is refusing to allow Julie Swetnick’s allegations to be investigated as part of this probe.

More in the story: Don McGahn and the White House have given the FBI a specific list of witnesses they are permitted to interview

I would expect significant pushback from the Senate on this. Flake, Collins, and Murkowski are already uncomfortable with this process, and this isn’t what they agreed to.

As I mentioned Daily Check-In 09/28/2018, Trump is scared shitless of Avenatti, but will inevitably play into his hands.

 

Another allegation

“Dear, Senator Grassley, et al.

The current situation regarding the accusations made by Dr.

Ford against Brett Kavanaugh have prompted me to write you

today. I have moved on with my life since he forced

himself on me as well. The times were so different, and I

didn’t expect to be taken seriously, embarrass my family,

be believed at all.

I was at a party with a friend. I had been drinking.

She left with another boy, leaving me to find my own way

home. Kavanaugh and a friend offered me a ride home. I

don’t know the other boy’s name. I was in his car to go

home. His friend was behind me in the backseat. Kavanaugh

kissed me forcefully. I told him I only wanted a ride

home. Kavanaugh continued to grope me over my clothes,

forcing his kisses on me and putting his hand under my

sweater. ‘No,’ I yelled at him.

The boy in the backseat reached around, putting his

hand over my mouth and holding my arm to keep me in the

car. I screamed into his hand. Kavanaugh continued his

forcing himself on me. He pulled up my sweater and bra

exposing my breasts, and reached into my panties, inserting

his fingers into my vagina. My screams were silenced by

the boy in the backseat covering my mouth and groping me as

well.

Kavanaugh slapped me and told me to be quiet and

forced me to perform oral sex on him. He climaxed in my

mouth. They forced me to go into the backseat and took

turns raping me several times each. They dropped me off

two blocks from my home. ‘No one will believe if you tell.

Be a good girl,’ he told me.

Watching what has happened to Anita Hill and Dr. Ford

has me petrified to come forward in person or even provide

my name. A group of white men, powerful senators who won’t

believe me, will come after me. Like Dr. Ford, I’m a

teacher, I have an education, a family, a child, a home. I

have credibility.  Just because something happens a long

time ago, because a rape victim doesn’t want to personally

come forward, does not mean something can’t be true.

Jane Doe, Oceanside, California.”

JFC.  Not only is this another allegation, but it’s also the most disturbing to date.  This one goes into graphic detail about the attack itself, and shows an escalation in aggressiveness.  It’s not a drunken smack in the face with a dick, or taking part in a train on a passed out girl, or even an attempted rape, but a full attack in a car with a friend of his.

Updating the count from Daily Check-In 09/26/2018, we’re now up to as many as 7 allegations.

  1. Dr. Christine Blasey Ford.  She was attacked at a house party in high school, got away when Mark Judge tried to join in and knocked Brett off of her.  Around 1981-1982.
  2. Deborah Ramirez.  Had too much to drink at a dorm party and while she was trying to get in her room, Brett dropped trou and hit her in the face with his dick.  At Yale, around 1982-85.
  3. Julie Swetnick.  Claims that Brett and Mark were rapists that got girls drunk or drugged enough so they couldn’t fight back against a gang rape.  She says she was raped in 1982 in the same manner she described.
  4. Unknown woman who went to the Montgomery County Police on Daily Check-In 09/24/2018, further detailed in Daily Check-In 09/25/2018.
  5. Rhode Island, 1985 boat assault.  Victim unknown.
  6. 1998 attack.
  7. Car Rape and attack.

Three of these women have placed their names out there for the public to hear them.  Nothing is still known about the fourth allegation, and no names are known for the last 3.  While the veracity is still in doubt, this sounds like more than enough to establish a pattern.

 

COHEN, NEW YORK, AND THE OTHER LAWSUITS

 

TRUMP THE RUSSIAN ASSET

 

TRAITOR TOTS

Kanye

 

FIGHTING BACK

 

IMMIGRATION

 

COLD WAR 2.0

 

#NEVERAGAIN

Las Vegas Anniversary

  • Brett Schwanbeck, 61, Bullhead City, Ariz.
  • Austin Meyer, 24, Reno
  • Pati Mestas, 67, Menifee, CA
  • Nicol Kimura, 38, Placentia, CA
  • Christopher Hazencomb, 44, Camarillo, CA
  • Keri Galvan, 51, Thousand Oaks, CA
  • Tara Roe Smith, 34, Okotoks, Alberta, CAN
  • Andrea Castilla, 28, Huntington Beach, California
  • Carly Kreibaum, 33, Sutherland, Iowa
  • Steve Berger, 44, Milwaukee, WI
  • Brian Fraser, 39, Walnut, CA
  • Derrick “Bo” Taylor, 56, Oxnard, California
  • Denise Cohen, 58, Carpinteria, CA
  • Laura Shipp, 50, Thousand Oaks, CA
  • Christiana Duarte, 22, Torrance, California
  • Candice Bowers, 40, Garden Grove, California
  • Lisa Patterson, 46, Rancho Palos Verdes, California
  • Rocio Guillen Rocha, 40, Eastvale, California
  • Jordyn Rivera, 21, San Bernardino, California
  • Austin Davis, 29, Riverside, CA
  • Calla Medig, 28, Jasper, Alberta, Canada
  • Carrie Parsons, 31, Seattle, Washington
  • Cameron Robinson, 28, St. George, Utah
  • Michelle Vo, 32, Los Angeles, California
  • Brennan Stewart, 30, Las Vegas
  • Erick Silva, 21, Las Vegas
  • Dorene Anderson, 49, Anchorage, Alaska
  • Heather Alvarado, 35, Enoch, Utah
  • Hannah Ahlers, 34, Beaumont, CA
  • Stacee Etcheber, 50, Novato, CA
  • Christopher Roybal, 28, Denver, CO
  • Victor Link, 55, San Clemente, CA
  • Melissa Ramirez, 26, Bakersfield, CA
  • Kelsey Meadows, 28, Taft, CA
  • Dana Gardner, 52, Grand Terrace CA
  • Bill Wolfe, Jr., 42, Shippensburg, Pennsylvania
  • Carrie Barnette, 34, Garden Grove, CA
  • Thomas Day Jr., 54, Corona, CA
  • Jennifer Parks, 36, Lancaster, CA
  • Kurt Von Tillow, 55, Cameron Park, CA
  • Jack Beaton, 54, Bakersfield, CA
  • Denise Burditus, 50, Martinsburg, WV
  • Sandy Casey, 35, Redondo Beach, California
  • Angie Gomez, 20, Riverside, California
  • Jennifer Irvine, 42, San Diego
  • Jessica Klymchuk, 34, Valleyview, Alberta, Canada
  • Rhonda LeRocque, 42, Tewksbury, Massachusetts
  • Jordan McIldoon, 23, Maple Ridge, British Columbia, Canada
  • Sonny Melton, 29, Paris, Tennessee
  • Adrian Murfitt, 35, Anchorage, Alaska
  • Rachel Parker, 33, Manhattan Beach, CA
  • John Phippen, 57, Valencia, CA
  • Quintin Robbins, 20, Henderson
  • Lisa Romero-Muniz, 48, Gallup, New Mexico
  • Bailey Schweitzer, 20, Bakersfield, CA
  • Susan Smith, 53, Simi Valley, California
  • Neysa Tonks, 46, Las Vegas

 

 

FIXING THE INTERNET

 

THE PROPAGANDA MACHINE

new study found that some of the negative reaction tweets about the Star Wars: The Last Jedi movie were created by Russian trolls, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Researcher Morten Bay of the University of Southern California found that 21.9 percent of all the tweets analyzed about the film had a negative view, with 50.9 percent of the negative tweets showing indications they were “likely politically motivated or not even human.” Bay added that a “number” of those users appeared “to be Russian trolls.” Bay concluded that the tweets were part of “deliberate, organized political influence measures disguised as fan arguments” that aimed to propagate “widespread discord and dysfunction in American society.” “Persuading voters of this narrative remains a strategic goal for the U.S. alt-right movement, as well as the Russian Federation,” Bay wrote. He also wrote that the movie’s political undertones were “consistent” with older Star Wars films, leading him to believe that the political divisiveness of the Trump era “primed these fans with a particular type of political messaging that is in direct conflict with the values presented in The Last Jedi.

Oh, that’s it!  Fucking with the election is one thing, but screw with Star Wars, and THIS. MEANS. WAR.

 

TRADE WAR AND ECONOMY

 

GOP: THE PARTY OF LINCOLN IS DEAD

Trump and McConnell are nothing if not opportunists. They have no personal loyalty to Kavanaugh. Trump is famous for firing people when they outlive their usefulness. McConnell takes situational ethics to a new low.

 

So Trump and McConnell will surely consider the risks and benefits of standing by Kavanaugh, and the odds of his prevailing. Those odds are worsening.

 

There is a fair chance that early this week, Kavanaugh will be asked to fall on his sword. You know the routine. “I have decided to spare my family and our country further ordeal and embarrassment, and blah, blah, blah.”

 

That way the FBI investigation is short-circuited and the subject is changed. The spectacle of Republican men defending a likely sexual assaulter against a highly credible woman goes away.

Trump and McConnell get to fast-track another nomination, preferably female, such as the ultraconservative Amy Coney Barrett, who was appointed last year to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. The court seat is saved, the optics on women shift, while the ferocious white male base is furious at Kavanaugh’s treatment and turns out to vote in November.

 

As McConnell and Trump take a close look at the risks and alternatives, dumping Kavanaugh has to be very tempting. As for Kavanaugh himself, even withdrawing may not spare him further trouble in the investigation of what actually occurred at that fateful party. He could be the subject of further inquiry by the House or Senate, or by Maryland prosecutors.

A smart person would not have nominated Kavanaugh in the first place.  A dumb person surrounded by smart people whom they listen to would have a long list of names, ready to pick from.  Fuck, the first minute that allegations against Kavanaugh surfaced, Trump’s staff should have had a list of backups ready to go at a moment’s notice, complete with judicial filings, paperwork, and everything required to get a non-controversial nominee through in a matter of weeks.

Instead, we get Trump, who will destroy the GOP for years to come because he wants his guy.  I wouldn’t be surprised to see Kavanaugh step aside, or Trump and McConnell force him out, but never underestimate the ego of a megalomaniac.

 

CRIME AND PUNISHMENT

 

ENVIRONMENT

 

ELECTION 2018

Most recently, the Congressional Leadership Fund, a super PAC closely aligned to House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), cut off funds for two GOP incumbent campaigns, for Rep. Mike Bishop (R-Mich.) and Rep. Mike Coffman (R-Colo.). The Super PAC, which has already raised about $100 million for the 2018 election cycle, is pulling out of $1 million in TV ad spots it had reserved for Coffman and $2.1 million it had reserved for Bishop. The fund will redirect the funds elsewhere, according to an article in Politico.

Political action committees give a disproportionate amount of their campaign dollars to incumbents because congressional re-election rates are typically in the 90% range. So, to see PACs walk away from incumbent races, especially funds so flush with cash, is quite unusual. But then again, this mid-term election is anything but typical.

According to Republican officials, in both races, Democratic challengers are leading and are expected to outspend Coffman and Bishop significantly in the final weeks leading up to the election. But another PAC, the National Republican Congressional Committee, isn’t convinced Coffman is a lost cause and has agreed to fill the gap with a $600,000 TV ad buy, according to the Politico article.

Meanwhile, the National Republican Congressional Committee has pulled funds from other races it sees as unsalvageable at this point, such as the Congressional District 17 in Pennsylvania. It recently canceled its ad reservations in the district where Rep. Keith Rothfus (R-Pa.) is up against Conor Lamb (D). The PAC had spent about $2.2 million in ads opposing Lamb. But the Democrat has significantly outraised his Republican challenger at $7.3 million to Rothfus’ $2 million, according to a report at the end of June by the Center for Responsive Politics.

Other Republican candidates have been unhappy about the lack of support from the NRCC, such as Rep. David Young (R-Iowa) and Rep. Kevin Yoder (R-Kan.). And others are in danger of getting cut off, including Rep. Barbara Comstock (R-Pa.) and Rep. Rod Blum (R-Iowa). But as former Rep. Phil English (R-Pa.), who was involved with the NRCC during his tenure, said, “These are very Darwinian decisions. It means selection of the fittest.”

Follow the money.  That’s what we’ve heard for years about corruption and politics, and nothing is more prescient about how things are going than campaign spending in October.

There are two reasons why a group suspends spending on a candidate.  Either they’re so far ahead that any extra money spent is a waste, or they’re down by so much that the candidate might as well start looking for a new job.  There’s only so much money available for these PAC’s that they have to be wise about where they spend.   Think of it like garbage time in a football game.  The home team is up 42-0 early in the third quarter, and they’ve pulled all of the starters, letting the backups get some playing time.  The losing team is still trying, but they’re getting ready to sit their starters, too.  It all depends on if they score quick on the next series.

That’s what’s happening with most of these races.  The NRCC has pulled funding from Keith Rothfus.  He’s getting slaughtered by Conor Lamb in the local polls, local ads, spending, and canvassing.  I’ve driven through PA-17 recently, and the Lamb:Rothfus yard sign ratio is about 10:1 in the areas I’ve seen.  In 2016, the yard sign split was pretty even between Dems and the GOP for the same area.  As far as television ad buys, I’ve seen two Rothfus commercials, and several Lamb spots.  Last night I saw the first attack ad against Lamb.  And there was only one.  Lamb had several spots in the same show.

 

IN OTHER NEWS…

 

RUMOR MILL

Who paid off 6-figures worth of Kavanaugh’s debt just before his nomination? What was their motive for doing so? Was said debt paid off so it wouldn’t be a confirmation/background issue? Was it someone linked to tRUmp’s lawyer(s) or admin? These questions need answers.

^^ The lack of interest here from (who didn’t press him at all about it) and the likes of , , etc is not only baffling, but concerning. Whether or not his debts will compromise the integrity of the court is *the* most important issue.

 

 

That’s it for the last few days.  It’s been a crazy ride, and it’s only going to get worse.  Remember to keep your wits about you, and your head on a swivel.

A spoiler for Tuesday, Stormy Daniels is back in the news.  No, she didn’t get arrested again, but it is bad news for Trump.

I don’t have any other article ideas floating around right now, but I keep playing with the idea of seeing if there’s some kind of rideshare I could volunteer for on Election Day to help people get to the polls.  I have no clue where to start, or if it’s feasible, but I feel like I should do something.

 

Thank you, and have a good one.

 

“Without Journalists, it’s just propaganda.”

– Katy Tur

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