Snow day.

We had about eight inches of snow yesterday and overnight, which explains my scarceness around here. Nothing like having to push these packets out under a heavy snowpack to slow you down. Now that net neutrality’s been repealed, it’s only going to get harder, you know.

And, as usual, everything has been overtaken by events. But I want to bring some links to your attention:

This Washington Post piece on the very perplexing situation the White House staff find themselves in – dealing with a chief executive who doesn’t believe his own intelligence services, but does believe the president of Russia. It is, frankly, terrifying:

Current and former officials said that his daily intelligence update — known as the president’s daily brief, or PDB — is often structured to avoid upsetting him.

Russia-related intelligence that might draw Trump’s ire is in some cases included only in the written assessment and not raised orally, said a former senior intelligence official familiar with the matter. In other cases, Trump’s main briefer — a veteran CIA analyst — adjusts the order of his presentation and text, aiming to soften the impact.

“If you talk about Russia, meddling, interference — that takes the PDB off the rails,” said a second former senior U.S. intelligence official.

There’s also the old keep-talking-I’m-listening scene, when Trump walks into the adjacent bathroom and out of a conversation about Angela Merkel. Jim Rhodes, the former governor of Ohio, pulled that trick on the president of Kent State not long after the shootings there. Or so I was told once.

One of my old Fort Wayne colleagues is the lead byline on this piece on the popularity of the AR-15, on the five-year anniversary of the Sandy Hook shootings. Haven’t read yet, but will.

Finally, I saw some people posting clips to a morning-show interview with Omarosa what’s-her-name, who was frogmarched out of the White House in the course of her firing, but of course denies it. I couldn’t watch more than 30 seconds, because my brain begins to boil at the thought of this profoundly unqualified individual being employed by the country I love for even one day, let alone nearly a year. There’s talk of a book coming down the road from her. I know the president ties up his private-sector employees with NDAs, but is that even possible once they’ve gone to the public payroll? I don’t think so, but I don’t know everything. Anyone?

Posted at 1:35 pm in Current events |

40 responses to “Snow day.”

  1. Judybusy said on December 14, 2017 at 1:47 pm

    For a minute, I thought I’d really lost track of time. Sandy Hook was 5 years ago today, not 10.

    That piece from the Post is really terrifying. 25th amendment anyone? Oh, tax cuts for wealthy and corporations? Cuts to the safety net? Never mind, carry on.

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    • nancy said on December 14, 2017 at 2:07 pm

      You are correct, and I just fixed it.

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  2. Suzanne said on December 14, 2017 at 2:17 pm

    I am amazed that the Sandy Hook massacre was 5 years ago and there is no momentum in Congress to do anything. I truly believe that these guns rights people, deep down in their hearts, think a bunch of dead kids is just the price you pay to continue with your gun fetish. Pro-life, most of them. Once you have those kids, we don’t feel too bad if they get shot up.

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  3. brian stouder said on December 14, 2017 at 3:09 pm

    …and indeed, as was noted a week ago – we now have insane shooters killing students in elementary schools, and it doesn’t make it into the top 4 news stories of the day….

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  4. Jolene said on December 14, 2017 at 3:30 pm

    Anne Telnaes gives us an image to illustrate the story re how Trump deals with intelligence briefings.

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  5. Dexter said on December 14, 2017 at 3:50 pm

    These kid-murders burn into my soul…I still can recite the names Carole Robertson,Addie Mae Collins, Cynthia Wesley, and Denise McNair without even thinking about it…and the face of Jesse Lewis has become the remembrance trigger for me regarding Sandy Hook. Jesse and his loving dad…I still recall the emotion Jesse’s dad showed on TV. Carole Robertson was exactly my age and I hate it as she never got to live he life, by now she should be a doting great-grandmother perhaps, but she lies in a grave since September of 1963. Birmingham, Alabama…and Doug Jones prosecuted the bastard who killed the 4 girls. Jesse and Dad…

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  6. Jeff Borden said on December 14, 2017 at 4:19 pm

    It’s one thing for the Orange King to act this way. He likely is mentally ill. And, if not, simply an extraordinarily foolish man baby. What chaps my ass is the way the Republican Congress sits supine while this idiot creates chaos at home and abroad. Clearly, servicing their donor class is far more important than dealing with a disturbed chief executive. And then there are the mooks like Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, who are actively working to torpedo the Mueller investigation. Retaining power means more to Big Jim –notable as the patron saint of the Abrams tank manufacturing plant in his district, which is turning out tanks no one wants– than fighting against a hostile foreign power looking to meddle in American elections.

    I know Coozledad’s language rankles some on this site, but dammit, he is right. The entire GOP is diseased. Even those “brave mavericks” like Flake, Corker and McCain have voted for the lousy tax bill, which we the people won’t get a chance to see until they approve it. If the Orange King takes the whole shebang down with him, it will literally be the first and only public service he has performed.

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  7. Mark P said on December 14, 2017 at 4:45 pm

    Suzanne, a Texas politician of some sort said exactly that: elementary school massacres are the price we have to pay to keep our guns. I wanted to ask him if he included his own children in that calculation or only the children of other people.

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  8. adrianne said on December 14, 2017 at 5:17 pm

    Jesus, these guys. Will no one rid us of this troublesome politician?

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  9. Icarus said on December 14, 2017 at 5:37 pm

    Oh let it be true, though I prefer the Onion’s headline (…hopefully into the sun)

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  10. Mark P. said on December 14, 2017 at 5:38 pm

    We have already seen the kind of thing that ignoring the actual intelligence gets us — Iraq Version 2.

    One of the things that worries me is that if this goes on too long, some of the experienced people in lower levels — you know, the ones that actually do the work — will get so discouraged that they quit. That could cripple the intelligence agencies for a very long time.

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  11. Mark P. said on December 14, 2017 at 5:45 pm

    I looked at Slate right after I posted my above comment and found a story about the US “stumbling” into wars with North Korea and Iran. It’s amazing to me that any sane person could not see how disastrous that would be. These people are truly dangerous.

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  12. Suzanne said on December 14, 2017 at 5:53 pm

    I think Ryan knows his chance of re-election are dwindling. This IronStache guy is gaining ground fast and actually IS a working man so is very likely to send Ryan packing. Ryan is a snowflake and can’t stand the thought of losing, so he’s going to quit first.

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  13. Scout said on December 14, 2017 at 6:44 pm

    When the writing is on the wall…

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  14. Bitter Scribe said on December 14, 2017 at 7:31 pm

    Trump already fired Omarosa twice. Why is the third time such a big deal?

    Regarding Sandy Hook: I think a lot of gun nuts realized that 20 dead little kids was too big a price to ask the general public to pay even for Second Amendment freedoms, which is why so many of them went off the deep end and insisted that the whole thing was a “hoax,” to the point of criminally harassing the parents. You can’t compromise or deal with people like that.

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  15. Andrea said on December 15, 2017 at 12:19 am

    My favorite Omarosa take

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  16. Heather said on December 15, 2017 at 11:23 am

    Watch Sen. John Kennedy (a Republican) show how one of Trump’s nominees to the U.S. District Court is embarrassingly underqualified by asking him basic questions. It’s funny but also awful. As Jamelle Bouie pointed out, “Imagine being this unqualified and accepting the nomination anyway.” This is the entitlement of white men, WRIT LARGE.

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  17. ROGirl said on December 15, 2017 at 11:37 am

    Best response from the senator, “I’ve read your resume.”

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  18. Dorothy said on December 15, 2017 at 11:41 am

    Good news from my doctor – nothing to worry about in the tissue they took on Wednesday. No cancer. I’m so happy!

    I was going to make a snotty comment about Trump consuming around a dozen cans of diet Coke every day, and wondering if the acid in the Coke is eating through his stomach or intestines, but then thought better of it.

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  19. Judybusy said on December 15, 2017 at 12:07 pm

    Congrats, Dorothy–that is a huge relief!

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  20. Dave said on December 15, 2017 at 12:12 pm

    Great news, Dorothy, that’s the best Christmas present!

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  21. Brandon said on December 15, 2017 at 12:24 pm

    @Dorothy, I’m glad.Unhealthy or not? At any rate, guzzling a dozen diet sodas a day just isn’t good.

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  22. beb said on December 15, 2017 at 2:00 pm

    It’s hard to realize that Sandy Hook was only five years ago. It certainly seems like twice that long ago.

    I got to wondering when the NRA changed from a sporting association and became THE gun nut society. I think the change was in the 60s, though I could be wrong. If the change was in the 60s then one has to wonder if this was a reaction to the Civil Rights legislation. This sees to fit because most of the gun nut crowd as whites and when they talk about self-protection it protection from criminals — black criminals. Thus it sounds like the NRA and the KKK are brothers into the sheets, both are dedicated to keeping blacks under control. When you consider that the 2nd amendment was to permit Slave Patrols in Virginia and other slave states this connection between NRA and racism seems pretty logical.

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  23. LAMary said on December 15, 2017 at 5:19 pm

    Omarosa did at least three notable things while in the White House. She gave herself the title “the Honorable Omarosa Manigault-Newman,” she went on Say Yes to the Dress to be incredibly obnoxious and select her wedding gown, and she had unauthorized photos of herself and her wedding party taken in the White House.

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  24. nancy said on December 15, 2017 at 5:36 pm

    I knew about two, not about “Say Yes to the Dress.”

    I saw her Christmas card reproduced somewhere recently — it was signed Pastor His Name and Lady Omarosa Hyphenated-Name. African-American churches sometimes bestow titles on pastor’s wives, so I guess that’s what that is. Still amazing.

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  25. Joe Kobiela said on December 15, 2017 at 5:36 pm

    Great news Dorothy!!
    Pilot Joe

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  26. Dexter said on December 15, 2017 at 6:47 pm

    Dorothy, such a nice report…now you can have a glorious holiday season. For those of you who may not know, Dorothy has a dog that is the most photogenic pooch ever, looks like a great pet.

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  27. Jolene said on December 15, 2017 at 7:07 pm

    I join others here in being glad for your good news, Dorothy. Enjoy your first Christmas with Olivia.

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  28. Suzanne said on December 15, 2017 at 7:31 pm

    Good news Dorothy!!

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  29. Suzanne said on December 15, 2017 at 9:02 pm

    On the advice of my friend, I have started reading Strangers in Their Own Land. It’s an incredible book. Go read it.

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  30. Deborah said on December 15, 2017 at 10:57 pm

    Yay Dorothy! Good news, so glad to hear it.

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  31. Julie Robinson said on December 16, 2017 at 10:12 am

    Dorothy, I’m so glad you got a clean bill of health! After seeing Mike through his cancer, it must have been a scary prospect.

    Well, I got out of town just in time, and though Orlando is considered chilly right now, I think 74° is perfection. We’ve seen Matt’s show twice and it was wonderful. (Of course, right? What mom is gonna say it was bad?)

    And now, the life of a pastor one week before Christmas; Jefftmmo will relate. Sarah has events at her church last night, this morning and tonight. At 7 am she got a call that a parishioner died overnight and could she please come and pray with them before they called the funeral home to come for the body. Now she’ll have a funeral too. To quote our Jewish friends, oy veh.

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  32. Joe Kobiela said on December 16, 2017 at 11:16 am

    It is nice down here, I’m in Tampa for some training till Wednesday, mid 70’s straight thru.
    Pilot Joe

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  33. Andrea said on December 16, 2017 at 12:19 pm

    Great news, Dorothy! I am sure that is a relief for you.

    The news that the CDC is attempting to control the English language is horrifying but not a total surprise to me. Over the past few months, we have been hearing this professionally from other Trump departments as well. In the field working with runaway and homeless youth, LGBTQ youth comprise up to 40% of this population. Yet LGBTQ information, sponsors, and funders were recently disinvited from a Federal conference on runaway and homeless youth, and the information about their risk factors is disappearing from the .gov web. In addition, we are hearing that the Department of Justice is insisting on calling youth involved in the justice system “offenders” instead of youth or justice-involved youth. It is terrible.

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  34. Julie Robinson said on December 16, 2017 at 4:05 pm

    Andrea, our son is a mosquito technician and although he doesn’t work for CDC, the county uses their pamphlets for educational purposes. He’s concerned about how to talk to a pregnant woman on the importance of controlling the mosquitoes if he’s not allowed to use the correct, scientific language.

    Even more concerning, he posted about this on Facebook and was bombarded with the MAGA people shouting fake news. They rejected every bit of science as well as the sources. Their minds are shuttered.

    To me, this is what’s truly insidious. Even after Trump goes away, these people, with this blinkered mindset, will remain. The well has been poisoned.

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  35. adrianne said on December 16, 2017 at 4:43 pm

    Dorothy, that’s wonderful news!

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  36. Mark P said on December 16, 2017 at 5:49 pm

    So the Trump administration is trying to Lysenko-ize science in the US. I wonder when the military officer corps purges will begin.

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  37. LAMary said on December 16, 2017 at 5:58 pm

    Omarosa was also the Washington D.C. entry in the Mrs. America pageant once.

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  38. Brandon said on December 16, 2017 at 7:52 pm

    Don’t forget Omarosa was on
    The Surreal Life where she famously clashed with Janice Dickinson.

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  39. Deborah said on December 17, 2017 at 3:26 pm

    A thread about a scary scenario. I’m going to take to the streets for sure, if this happens.

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