Daily Check-In 8/17/2017

Thursday, Thursday.  I’ll try to make this shorter today, as I just finished up an article about Fox & Friends – 10 Minutes Is Enough

Donald Trump took to Twitter this morning and… Does this sentence ever end well?  If I make this a multiple choice question, can you guess at this point?

Donald Trump took to Twitter this morning and…

  1. Talked about how beautiful the statues to Traitors to the United States are.
  2. Directly compared Robert E. Lee and George Washington.
  3. Attacked the head of the Senate Intelligence Committee for not standing by him as he defended Nazis in public.
  4. Advised our military leaders to perform war crimes and crimes against humanity, based on a debunked story.
  5. Engaged in secessionist rhetoric with his base, hoping to scare anyone looking to remove him from office.
  6. ALL OF THE ABOVE

Don’t worry, I’ll wait.

Having a hard time with today’s question?  I’ll give you a hint.  It’s Donald Fucking Trump.

That’s rigth, 6.  All of the above.

After studying Trump for the last couple years, when Orange Julius goes off like this, shit’s about to hit the fan.

What could that be?

First, Congressman Steve Cohen promises to introduce Articles of Impeachment.  He doesn’t say what charges specifically, but at this point, there’s enough to go around.

Steve Bannon had  this interview where he proposed a trade war with China, smeared Trump on North Korea, proposed raising taxes on the rich, and about some of the infighting.  Here’s a summary on Axios.

Speaking of Bannon, over the last few days, a couple rumors have been floating around about Bannon’s connections to Gamergate, World of Warcraft, and Russia.  I need to find more details on it, but the short version is that Bannon and the Alt-Right stoke the hate that occurred in Gamergate, especially the Anti-Feminism, Anti-Women stuff, to a bunch of men that have been getting real good at doing some low-level coding to mine in WoW and other games.  With a little bit of proper encouragement, these men were pushed to some hacker forums on the dark web, where they were likely frequenting anyway, and urged a few of them to take on work outside of gaming, making malware and other stuff.  Eventually, they were radicalized, and started working with state-sponsored hacking groups like Fancy Bear and Cozy Bear.

Speaking of Fancy Bear, they’re still at work.  Remember when Diaper Donny released his mails to the world showing that he wasn’t colluding with the Russians when the email chain said flat out he was?  Well, around that time, the White House started pushing a story about the “Real Collusion Story” between HRC and Ukraine?  The White House started talking about this on July 10.  Fox News picked it up on July 12, referencing a website from some group called Cyber Berkut.  Who are they?  Fancy Bear.  That site went up on July 12, claiming to have emails between HRC and Ukraine.

Yesterday, Chuck Todd and Shepard Smith both reached out to any and all Republicans they could, looking for anyone to defend Donald Trump.  No one agreed to come on their shows.

Newt Gingrich said that there are no very fine people that are Nazis on Fox News.

The Dow Jones fell 150 points today over fears that as long as Trump is in office, Republicans won’t get their tax cuts.

Republicans across the country are doing the slow dance away from Donald Trump, but not fast enough or hard enough.  When more than a couple openly ask for him to step down, call it a game for Donald Trump.

That’s it for today’s update, unless something big happens between 18:20 and 22:00.  I’m going to work on a couple of the GTKYG series, starting with the Federal System, The Branches, Impeachment, and Pardons.  I’ve got a feeling they’re going to be in the news quite a bit coming up.

Fox & Friends – 10 Minutes Is Enough

This morning I had to watch Fox News for a few minutes while getting the car repaired, and I think I understand where the one third support for Trump comes from.  Fox News was straight up propaganda.  It was Fox & Friends in the morning, which is ostensibly a news show, but it was full-blown, Dear Leader levels of propaganda.  In the ten minutes, there were four stories.

A truck full of “illegals” was pulled over somewhere down South.  Not illegal immigrants, but “illegals.”  Dropping immigrant humanizes them.

An Australian PM wore a burka into session.  The PM (think Aussie Congresswoman) was buried, and the story opened with “A WOMAN wearing a Burka walked in, and no one knew who she was.”  Here, we have inciting fear in the unknown.

Jeff Sessions scores a win against Sanctuary Cities.  YAY LAW AND ORDER! There was no discussion about what Sanctuary Cities are, or whether the actions of the government are just, or legal, or even necessary, but the only defense they had was “they were breaking the law.”  This is called an Appeal to the Law.  

Final story, before I felt that I’d seen enough, was a ham-fisted attempt at trying to draw a comparison between Donald Trump’s support of the Nazis and Ronald Regan once being called a racist.  They pulled some whataboutism and false equivalency out of their collective asses, blamed the “Main Stream Media”, as if Fox News isn’t one of the largest News Cable Channels in existence, while also completely avoiding what Trump did to draw everyone’s ire.

So, they avoided the problem, reframed the problem as something different, gave a comparison to something that wasn’t a big deal, the managed to blame everyone else for overreacting to the problem they designed, not the actual problem at hand.

Let me give an example.  Let’s say back when the Jerry Sandusky   mess took place, that one of the news channels decided that, instead of airing the story as it happened (arrested for child rape), it was described as a simple misunderstanding about how Jerry was caught rough housing with a kid on campus, and the coach who caught him had some problems of his own, and then it was compared to some famous person being accused of regular child abuse.  If delivered the right way, that story would sound like Jerry was being set up.

That’s what Fox News does for Donald Trump.  They’re setting him up as the “good guy” in the story.

Don’t be fooled.  This is Not News.  This is Propaganda.  This is how propaganda works.

In marketing, there’s this term called Spin.  Spinning a story to make is just right for a client.  Sometimes it’s called “crafting a narrative.”  When it’s done for politics, it’s called propaganda.

But what makes Fox News so scary is that they portray themselves as an actual source of news.

They have journalists with name recognition.  They have sets and graphics.  They have a lower third scrolling all the time.  They have all of the appearances of a news organization, but none of the intent to be one.

They say that only they can be trusted to deliver your news.  They then attack anyone who disagrees with them, creating the mentality that if it doesn’t come from Fox News, it isn’t real news.  The viewers of Fox News have been trained to attack the source of the story, especially those from “liberal” sources, like the Washington Post or the New York Times, or even the Wall Street Journal, which is also owned by Rupert Murdoch.

I reported recently on a report about Sean Hannity being some serious trouble with the FBI over the Seth Rich Story, and also his role in disseminating Russian propaganda.  That’s still unfolding, from what I hear.  I’ll keep this blog updated when I hear more.

Fox News wants to be the kingmaker.  They claim to be the only one that can be trusted.  That’s like Littlefinger telling Sansa that only he can be trusted.  But what happens when Fox News can taste the throne for themselves, or realizes they can get their agenda passed with someone else in command?  Or, what if Donald Trump becomes so vile, even they can’t save him?

I’ve said before that the Right Wing Media helped get Trump elected.  They also keep in him office.  If Fox News decides to abandon Trump, it’s game over for the Orange One.  But what would it take for them to give up support?  Would they still carry his water if the worst rumors of the pee tape were true?  What about the allegations surrounding Trump Modeling?  If Trump were facing human trafficking charges, would Fox News still defend him?

Racism And Politics Today

Eventually, I will write the stories I had planned to write, but life has a funny way of preventing that.

Warning: This article will contain strong language. Sensitive subjects will be covered, viewer discretion is advised.

This weekend, a rally was held in Charlottesville, VA, originally to protest the removal of a monument to Robert E. Lee, the general in charge of the Confederate Army during the Civil War.

Was this rally attended by historians who objected to the statue’s removal under historical grounds? No.

Was this rally attended by the descendants of the statue sculptors? No.

Was the rally attended by the local chapter of the Robert E. Lee reenactment club? No.

Was it attended by neo-nazis, alt-right white supremacists, the white lives matter, all lives matter, and the KKK? Well, yes, actually it was.

A bunch of white racist assholes, bitching about how they’re being discriminated against, all the while chanting “blood and soil”, “White Power”, and a bunch of other disgusting crap that I refuse to type right now.

And they all voted Republican in the last election.

The Republican Party. The Party of Lincoln. The political party founded on the abolitionist principles of ending slavery, and fighting against racism, has officially become the Party of Trump and Racists.

How, for the love of fuck, did this happen? What does it mean that racism is acceptable in the White House today? And how do we fix this?

First, how did this happen? Back in the 1850’s, the Whig Party was falling apart. Out of its ashes, the anti-slavery wing of the Whig Party formed the Republican Party. They won the Presidency in 1860 when Lincoln defeated the current Vice President John C. Breckinridge and Stephen Douglas. South Carolina seceded shortly thereafter. The Civil War started.

The Republicans were the left wing party. They were the liberals and radicals. The Democrats were the conservative and reactionary party. The pro-slavery, pro-racism party.

Funny thing is, as times change, so do people and politics. Even the parties themselves undergo major changes. The largest change came in 1964, when Lyndon B. Johnson, a Democrat from Texas, signed the Civil Rights Act, which guaranteed equal treatment under the law for blacks. This pissed off the south, who had long fought against treating blacks like, well, people. Jim Crow, lynchings, segregation, these were all “traditions” deeply held by the descendants of Dixie.

How did the South respond to a Democratic president signing a law that treated black people like equals? They left the Democratic Party for the Republicans.  Classic “Blue Dog” Democrats like Strom Thurmond left for the Republican Party in retaliation to such an egregious political move like giving black children the same access to a quality education as their white counterparts had.

But, didn’t LBJ win reelection in 1964?  Yes, he did.  He was wildly popular at this time, having served as VP to John F. Kennedy, who was assassinated in 1963.  But, by 1968, thing got weird.  George Wallace ran on a pro-segregation policy, and managed to carry 5 states and 46 electoral college votes, all in the Deep South.  Following that, the only times any of the Deep South states voted for a Democrat in a presidential election was either for Bill Clinton or Jimmy Carter, both Southerners themselves.

Over the next couple generations, the party identities changed.  The Democrats quickly became the party of the minorities, while the Republicans would become, ever increasingly, the party for disenfranchised white people.  Or, at least disenfranchised in their own minds.  Evangelicals that would claim Christian Persecution because it became socially acceptable to acknowledge that other religions exist, and white racists would claim that because minorities were getting rights, they were losing theirs.

The GOP’s embrace of racial hate accelerated in 2016, with Donald Trump becoming the nominee, and later President.  He didn’t just implicitly accept the support of white supremacists, he explicitly embraced it.

I mentioned in 2016 GOP Primary on how Trump won the primary election partly on his adoption of the Alt-Right/Neo-Nazi/KKK/White Supremacists. I didn’t mention how Jeff Sessions, his Attorney General, reached notoriety in Alabama by pursuing “voter fraud” cases against black people in his home state, going out of his way to disenfranchise thousands of voters and wants to extend mandatory sentencing for drug crimes in African-American communities.  I didn’t mention Steven Miller or Seb Gorka, members of Trump’s White House, who both have extensive ties to the White Supremacist community.  Or Steve Bannon, Trump’s Chief Strategist, former CEO of Breitbart who basically wrote the Muslim Travel Ban that Trump signed as an Executive Order a week into his presidency.

So now, we’re in a fucked up situation.  The President of the United States is either a sniveling coward who’s afraid of upsetting his political base of racists and crazies and refuses to do something useful for this country, or he’s a racist who enjoys seeing blacks, Muslims, Mexicans, and any other non-white people suffer.  Or both.

Trump is a racist who employs racists.  His history of racism goes back a long way.  This article from the NYT goes into great detail about his past, when him and his father would actively turn away black people from renting apartments from them.  Later, he was sued by the Federal Government TWICE for violating racial discrimination laws in housing.  He would order black employees off the casino floors when him, his wife, or a “whale” would visit.  He maintained a campaign against the Central Park 5 for almost 30 years, said a judge couldn’t rule fairly against him because the judge was of Mexican descent, attacked Barack Obama with the Birtherism craziness for over 5 years, and attacked a pair of Muslim Gold Star parents.  HuffPo has a better list here.  And this Mother Fucker is President.

Anyone who thinks that this racist prick is becoming less of a racist hasn’t paid attention.  There have been about a couple dozen incidents of terrorism around the world since he became President.  A handful of them were perpetrated by Muslims, or other minorities.  Most of them were carried out by white people, specifically targeting other races.  How many did Trump speak about, or acknowledge?

None of them.  No message of condoning the violence, or how we need to reach out to each other.  On most of them, radio silence.

With the Minnesota Mosque Bombing last week, the White House did the unthinkable.  And that’s by 2017 standards.  Seb Gorka, Trump’s Deputy Assistant, claimed that the attack may be a fake attack staged by Liberals.  I shit you not.  This is coming from the White House as an official stance.

Then, a couple days later, Charlottesville.  A rally on Friday night with a bunch of racist white assholes carrying Tiki Torches chanting about “blood and soil”, that turned a little violent.  Then, the shit hit the fan on Saturday when the Racist Rally was met by counter protestors.  That got very violent, very quick.  Several people were injured, and as of this writing, one person died when a racist from Ohio, James Field, drove his Dodge faux muscle car into a crowd of protestors. He killed Heather Heyer, a 32 year old woman, simply there to speak out against hate.

Does the President condemn the racists for their actions? Does he call it what it is, an act of terrorism? Does he call the grieving parents to offer his condolences?

Fuck no.

Donald Trump comes up with one of the most cowardly responses ever, and dog-whistles against violence “on all sides.”  What a crock of shit.

Sorry, I’m starting to get a little upset.  More so than I usually do.  I hate racism, and the people who knowingly and willingly practice it.  I’m glad I moved out of Pennsyltucky, so I don’t have to deal with that shit as much.  I still hear the occasional relative drop the n-word now and then, but for the most part, I chalk it up to them being old, and they’ll die soon.

Now, where do we go from here?  How do we combat the racism in our politics and our culture?  Where do we go, what do we do, with a racist as President?

First, let’s acknowledge the elephant in the room.  Racism does exist, and most people have some level of prejudice based off of how someone looks and what culture they grew up in.  Let’s recognize that Everyone’s a Little Bit Racist.  It’s what we do with it that matters.

Second, realize that there’s a difference in levels of racism, and the self-appointed racism police needs to recognize this.  There is a world of difference between blowing up a church frequented by blacks or Muslims, and not having a black actor nominated for an Oscar.  The hypersensitivity of racism pushed a lot of otherwise non-racists, or low-level racists, into the waiting arms of the white supremacist movement.

Hate speech is protected speech, but there are limits.  Speech used to incite a riot or violence is not protected.

Next, name and shame.  I support doxxing the fuckers at that rally.  Each and every one of them gathered, in public, in full view of their neighbors, their family, and the Internet.  Find them and expose them.  Bigotry dies in daylight, and making these people accountable for their actions is the first step to ending it.

Finally, it’s time to take down the monuments, the statues, and the symbols these people rally around.  The monuments to soldiers who led an insurrection against their country.  The statues of the generals fighting for “states rights” to own people and treat them as glorified farm equipment and cattle, and the symbols of defeated armies.  Don’t be quiet anymore.  Let the person waving the “Stars and Bars” know that sure, they can cry about General Lee all they want, but you’ll assume that they’re a racist asshole who wants to fuck his own sister or cousin.  Have a swastika tattoo?  My guess is you did time in prison and were afraid of getting raped by a big black dick.

I’m ending this article on incest and big black dicks, cause,…. why the fuck not?

The Changing Narrative

Sometimes, the hardest part of writing this site isn't getting started, but deciding what to write.

At this stage, I have about a hundred articles I'd like to write. Almost all of these will be written eventually, but that will take some time, and will need a system. Voter rolls, propaganda, and a post about why I especially hate Corey Lewandowski are incoming, but today, I want to talk about the changing narrative of the news.

One of the reasons I started this site was to explain what's going on and what's changing as time goes on. It's easy to get lost in the cacophony of the everyday news, and lose track of how we got where we are. But it is hard to keep up with the changing narrative.

That's what I'd to talk about today – the changing narrative in the news, and where I think it's headed.

Earlier this weekend, Fox News ran an article asking "Who cares if the Trump Campaign did anything illegal?" That's quite a turnaround from "There was no collusion" even a couple months ago.

Rumors about the Trump Campaign working with the Russians to sway, or possibly steal the election started back late in 2016. There were some weird moments here and there, but nothing concrete. Personally, I think the weirdest was the time he read Russian propaganda at a campaign rally. This should have been a much bigger story than it was, but it wasn't even the Disaster-du-jour. This, and other tell-tale signs of Russian interference were lost by the MSM.

After the election, the talk about the Russians died down somewhat in the MSM while they chased after the Trump Transition Team. Meanwhile, the Rumor Mill was up and running. More and more details came out regarding connections and meetings. Then, 2 big things happened; increased sanctions on Russia and the Steele Dossier.

The sanctions definitely pulled the attention of the MSM. Tightening banking restrictions on the Oligarchs and expelling diplomats is something they could get their minds around and prove. The Steele Dossier, that was a little harder to fathom. When Buzzfeed released the story broke in January, the Rumor Mill dug deep into it.

In January, as Trump took office, the MSM was still giving him a chance, while the Rumor Mill was picking up steam, getting info that the FBI was investigating the campaign. The Right Wing Media (RWM) claimed this was the Democrats being sore losers.

When details about Michael Flynn came out, the MSM was still behind on ball on collusion, but was catching up to the Rumor Mill. For their part, they were already talking about Counterintelligence Investigations and FISA warrants. The RWM claimed the actions against Flynn were a witch hunt.

If I had to pick one moment that changed the discussion across the board and changed the narrative, it was March 4 when Donald Trump claimed that Obama had tapped his phones in a crazy early morning tweet. This spurred the House Permanent Select Intelligence Committee to hold a hearing with FBI Director Jim Comey to dig into these claims. This backfired spectacularly. Not only did Comey not confirm Trump's accusations of illegal wiretapping, but Jim Comey, then Director of the FBI, had confirmed that an investigation had been ongoing into the Trump Campaign's activities and connections with the Russian Government. Hole. Lee. Shit. The MSM dug into the collusion argument. The Rumor Mill was already taking about grand juries being impaneled. The RWM decried this as bubkus.

The next change in the narrative came after Devin Nunes' Midnight Ride. I'll go into detail about that later, but two talking points came out of this: Unmasking and FISA 702. The MSM continued digging into more meetings between Trump's campaign and the Russians. The Rumor Mill doubled down on grand juries and more details. The RWM talked about Susan Rice "illegally" ordering unmasking.

Jim Comey was fired in Mid-May. The word of the day now became Obstruction of Justice. As details leaked, it became obvious that something was rotten in Denmark. When Robert Mueller was named as the Special Counselor a week later, things seemed to settle down, for a moment. Everyone, including the RWM, agreed with the Mueller announcement.

That was, until, news came out that Jared Kushner met with the Russians in Trump Tower, and that the FBI was interested. From late May to early June, the MSM narrative changed from "was there collusion?" to "how much?" The Rumor Mill was a few weeks ahead, talking about details of meetings that were forthcoming and how New York was advancing with their RICO investigation into Trump. The RWM, for the first time, stopped denying that collusion took place and started asking "is collusion illegal?"

More and more details have come out since, but once everyone lawyered up, things got interesting. I also noticed a pattern in Trump's tweets and the stories coming from the RWM. If Trump tweeted "FAKE NEWS" in all caps, and mentioned a news outlet by name, expect that organization to release a bombshell soon. The more vicious the attack, the worse the news would be for Trump. It's almost like he's rage tweeting after they reached out to him for comment.

There's been one exception to this has been "the big one" that the Rumor Mill claims is being delayed on purpose, by request from Robert Mueller.

Following Don Jr.'s email release, the MSM narrative changed from questioning whether there was collusion to now accepting, beyond a shadow of a doubt that something illicit happened. Even the RWM can no longer deny that something stinks.

In a span of 6 months, we went from "there was no collusion" to "so what if he broke the law?" Just 6 months.

So, where do we go from here?

The MSM will continue to follow the breadcrumbs and lead to more, worse details, leading all the way to an argument about the definition of treason. Plus, New York has something to say.

The RWM will continue swinging wild, calling for Robert Mueller's firing, hoping that will end the investigation. (Spoiler: it won't.)

The Rumor Mill is pulling on some dark threads. They're digging in to the specifics of how the election was stolen, and how much Vice President Pence knew, and when. There are rumblings that New York and California are investigating money laundering, embezzlement, and human trafficking. As always, I advise taking all of this with a grain of salt.

How did we get here?

How did we get here?

How in the hell did we end up, in the Summer of 2017, six months into the presidency of Donald Trump?

How did we get to the point that the FBI are the good guys?

How did we get to the point where main stream media is talking about collusion and treason while the fringe media, the normal home of conspiracy theorists, deny that anything even took place?

How did we go, as a nation, from being the shining city on the hill to being run by a group of wannabe dictators and religious zealots?

How did the Party of Lincoln and Reagan change to the Party of Racists and Fascists?

How did we get to the point where calm political discussion is no longer expected, but viewed as a pleasant surprise?

How did we get to the point where 1/3 of the population doesn't believe in basic facts unless they support their cause, another 1/3 calls that group liars, and the rest are apathetic?

That's what this website is about. None of this is Normal seeks to try to make sense out of the world, and everything that's going on. Politics, propaganda, whatever's going on, and I feel the need to talk about it, I'll talk about it here.

Who's this for? Anyone who wants or needs a sanity check.

We are in some crazy times. None of this is Normal.