WTF Community

What The Fuck Happened Over The Weekend?


#425

I’m trying to think what Trump would consider pairs well with a fine tariff; maybe an aromatic Medicare reduction.

Sure, I can maintain a Trade War or Economic thread. Just PM me the details. :smile:


#426

@Keaton_James

Great, I’ll come up with some ideas for the scope and message you with more information. We can hash it out front there. Honestly the idea for the thread just came to me. :slight_smile:


#427

Ok…even if Air Force didn’t initially raise an eyebrow on this finding, they are stepping up to double check as to the costs and potential mishandling of government funds.

The Air Force did not immediately respond to questions about that September stay, but Air Force Brig. Gen. Ed Thomas, the chief spokesman, told POLITICO in a statement that “initial reviews indicate that aircrew transiting through Scotland adhered to all guidance and procedures."

He acknowledged, however, that U.S. service members “lodging at higher-end accommodations, even if within government rates, might be allowable but not advisable. Therefore, we are reviewing all associated guidance."

He added: “Even when USAF aircrews follow all directives and guidance, we must still be considerate of perceptions of not being good stewards of taxpayer funds that might be created through the appearance of aircrew staying at such locations."


(David Bythewood) #428

Trumpian malevolence continues, as Bahamian refugees are harassed, and conflict is sought elsewhere

‘I’m watching my daughter cry’: Bahamas hurricane survivors are kicked off ferry over U.S. visa demands

The official CBP statement,


(David Bythewood) #429

The Taliban harbored al-Qaeda after 9/11.

So what could be more natural than inviting them to Camp David, where the U.S. planned its response to 9/11, days before the anniversary of that infamous date?

Wait, WHAT?

Republican reps cite 9/11 anniversary in criticizing Trump decision to invite Taliban to US for peace talks

Trump Wanted to Boast About His Own ‘Camp David Accords’ Before Taliban Deal Collapsed

Trump reportedly wanted to show off his negotiation skills by inviting the Taliban to Camp David

‘More losses to US’, says Taliban as Trump cancels Afghan talks

Afghan group says US President Donald Trump’s abrupt cancellation of peace talks will harm Washington more.

Trump cancels secret US meeting with Afghan Taliban


#430

Trump’s infantile, reckless behavior has deprived our intelligence community of what sounds like one of its most valuable assets. Yes, he is a threat to our national security and, yes, he does have the nuclear codes.

In a previously undisclosed secret mission in 2017, the United States successfully extracted from Russia one of its highest-level covert sources inside the Russian government, multiple Trump administration officials with direct knowledge told CNN.

A person directly involved in the discussions said that the removal of the Russian was driven, in part, by concerns that President Donald Trump and his administration repeatedly mishandled classified intelligence and could contribute to exposing the covert source as a spy.

The decision to carry out the extraction occurred soon after a May 2017 meeting in the Oval Office in which Trump discussed highly classified intelligence with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and then-Russian Ambassador to the US Sergey Kislyak. The intelligence, concerning ISIS in Syria, had been provided by Israel.

The disclosure to the Russians by the President, though not about the Russian spy specifically, prompted intelligence officials to renew earlier discussions about the potential risk of exposure, according to the source directly involved in the matter.
The removal happened at a time of wide concern in the intelligence community about mishandling of intelligence by Trump and his administration. Those concerns were described to CNN by five sources who served in the Trump administration, intelligence agencies and Congress.

Those concerns continued to grow in the period after Trump’s Oval Office meeting with Kislyak and Lavrov. Weeks after the decision to extract the spy, in July 2017, Trump met privately with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the G20 summit in Hamburg and took the unusual step of confiscating the interpreter’s notes. Afterward, intelligence officials again expressed concern that the President may have improperly discussed classified intelligence with Russia, according to an intelligence source with knowledge of the intelligence community’s response to the Trump-Putin meeting.

Knowledge of the Russian covert source’s existence was highly restricted within the US government and intelligence agencies. According to one source, there was “no equal alternative” inside the Russian government, providing both insight and information on Putin.

The secret removal of the high-level Russian asset has left the US without one of its key sources on the inner workings of the Kremlin and the plans and thinking of the Russian president at a time when tensions between the two nations have been growing.


(David Bythewood) #431

U.S. restricts visas for Cuban officials involved in sending doctors abroad


#432

:eyes:


(David Bythewood) #433

The Secretary of Commerce threatened to fire top employees at NOAA on Friday after the agency’s Birmingham office contradicted President Trump’s claim that Hurricane Dorian might hit Alabama, according to three people familiar with the discussion.

That threat led to an unusual, unsigned statement later that Friday by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration disavowing the office’s own position that Alabama was not at risk. The reversal caused widespread anger within the agency and drew criticism from the scientific community that NOAA, a division of the Commerce Department, had been bent to political purposes.



(David Bythewood) #434

FFS.

Trump has doubled down on blocking Bahamian refugees, stating that the Bahamas is full of “very bad gang members”.

The people Trump’s lying, racist CBP tossed off a boat from the Bahamas to Florida literally had their police records with them. And were still turned away:


#435

WTF WTF WTF WTF

The US and Brazil have agreed to promote private-sector development in the > Amazon, during a meeting in Washington on Friday.

They also pledged a $100m (£80m) biodiversity conservation fund for the Amazon led by the private sector.

Brazil’s foreign minister said opening the rainforest to economic development was the only way to protect it.

Environmentalists will be sceptical

By Roger Harrabin, BBC Environment Analyst

Environmentalists will say this scheme is a ruse to open up the Amazon for mining, logging and farming.

When roads are driven into the forest it attracts more settlers, who clear land and hunt wildlife.

The land clearance - even on a quite small basis - leads to changed weather patterns, which harm the forest.

Environmentalists will argue the best way of saving the rainforest is to leave it in the hands of indigenous people.


#436

Typical Collins move. For the past week she’s been drumming up media attention to bolster her “moderate” image by vociferously opposing Trump’s military money grab to fund his wall. Then, when it comes down to the wire on a crucial amendment vote, she becomes the deciding vote supporting Trump’s plan.

U.S. Sen. Susan Collins of Maine took heat from Democrats on Thursday for voting against an amendment to a broad defense spending bill that was intended to block President Trump from diverting military funds for the construction of a wall on the southern border.

The amendment, offered by Senate Democrats, was defeated by one vote during a series of votes on spending packages before the Senate Appropriations Committee.

The 15-14 vote against the spending bill amendment split along party lines, with Republicans opposing the measure and Democrats backing it. The underlying spending bill totals $695 billion, a $20 billion increase over 2019 levels, and includes a 3.1 percent pay hike for members of the U.S. military.

Maine Democratic Party Chairwoman Kathleen Marra blasted Collins for the vote in a statement Thursday.

“If Sen. Collins were serious about preventing the president from raiding funds Congress had already set aside for military bases across the country, she would have voted to support this measure,” Marra said in the statement. “Instead she was the deciding vote against it.”

This pattern of duplicitous behavior has not gone unnoticed by Maine voters. A few weeks ago, a respected poll showed that support for Collins in the state is plummeting. Her most recent turncoat vote will only serve to further reinforce this trend.

A new poll from a respected online survey research company indicates that Sen. Susan Collins’ once-strong approval rating in Maine has plummeted in recent months.

The poll by Morning Consult, which was conducted online with nearly 2,000 Maine voters between April and June, found Collins had the second-lowest approval rating of any U.S. senator, besting only Mitch McConnell, the Senate majority leader from Kentucky. Meanwhile, Maine’s other senator, Angus King, an independent who caucuses with Democrats, was ranked as the most liked senator in the nation.

Collins’ approval rating dropped 16 points from the first quarter of 2019, the most of any senator in the survey.

The Morning Consult poll numbers for Collins, which show that 45 percent approved of her while 48 percent disapproved, prompted an onslaught of crowing by Collins’ opponents.

“This new polling reflects the fact that we can’t count on Sen. Collins to be an independent advocate, she has chosen her party and special interests in Washington over the people of Maine,” Maine Democratic Party Chairwoman Kathleen Marra said in a prepared statement Thursday. “She turned her back on all but the wealthy for a tax bill that rewarded corporations while threatening health care for everybody else. Mainers are fed up and ready for change.”

The new polling numbers come just a day after another national political action committee, NextGen America, announced it would spend $1 million in Maine trying to unseat Collins. The PAC focuses on turning out young voters in support of liberal or progressive candidates and causes.

The PAC plans to organize students on 11 different college campuses in Maine over the next year with the focus on defeating Collins. Collins’ seat is one of several being targeted by national groups in hopes that Democrats can recapture the majority in the upper chamber of Congress.

And there’s this:

The non-partisan Cook Report, which analyzes political contests across the nation has changed its take on the 2020 Maine U.S. Senate election from “leaning Republican” to a “toss-up.”

The report cites several polls in the last few months that indicate incumbent Republican Sen. Susan Collins has lost ground with Maine voters. Collins has won by double digit margins in past Senate elections, except for her first race in 1996 when she won by just five points over former Democratic Gov. Joe Brennan.

Collins has lost support from some women because of her vote to confirm conservative Justice Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. She also has been scrutinized for not being forceful enough in her criticism of President Trump.

The Cook Report also says that Maine House Speaker Sara Gideon is raising the money needed to challenge Collins

We can win the Senate and we will win the Senate. :muscle:


#437

Glad to hear the Judges state their impartiality or non-alignment as being T chosen appointees. It puts some ‘air in the room’ so to speak.

Judges Say They Aren’t Extensions of Presidents Who Appointed Them - WSJ

In the November 2018 statement issued by the court, Chief Justice Roberts said: “We do not have Obama judges or Trump judges, Bush judges or Clinton judges. What we have is an extraordinary group of dedicated judges doing their level best to do equal right to those appearing before them.”

Mr. Trump then rejected the chief justice’s position, tweeting “Sorry Chief Justice John Roberts, but you do indeed have ‘Obama judges.’ ”

Mr. Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) have made a priority of filing the federal bench with conservative appointees, and Mr. Trump has embraced the issue as a central point of his re-election bid. On the Supreme Court, Mr. Trump’s two conservative picks have tilted the balance to the right, highlighting the importance of the president in determining the federal courts’ makeup and the future course of the law.

Historic Milestone indeed!” the president tweeted Friday, along with an article noting he has filled 150 judgeships.

Three other federal circuit judges on the panel Saturday, all either Trump or Obama appointees, joined Judge Barrett in rejecting partisan characterizations of the judiciary, also criticizing news reports that emphasize which president picked a judge for the bench.

“We certainly are not viewing ourselves as members of teams or camps or parties. It’s a very frustrating thing about the way the media portray us,” said Judge Stephanos Bibas, a Trump appointee to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, in Philadelphia. “My boss is not my chief judge. My boss is not my appointing president, my boss is the Constitution and the laws,” he said.


#438

UAW is about to strike with 50,000 workers at GM on Monday.
With diminished car sales, workers request better wages, re-opening of plants and better benefits .

NYTimes: Autoworkers Union Calls for Strike Against G.M.

With the two sides still far apart on most of the major issues in negotiations for a new labor contract, the United Automobile Workers union said on Sunday that it would go on strike at General Motors.

U.A.W. regional leaders in Detroit voted unanimously on Sunday morning to authorize the strike, set to begin at midnight, after the union’s current bargaining agreement expired on Saturday. And now nearly 50,000 U.A.W. employees at General Motors plants across the country are set to walk off the job, barring a breakthrough in the talks, in the first such strike since 2007.

“Today, we stand strong and say with one voice, we are standing up for our members and for the fundamental rights of working-class people in this nation,” Terry Dittes, a union vice president, said after the meeting.

The U.A.W. is pushing G.M. to improve wages, reopen idled plants, add jobs at others and close or narrow the difference between pay rates for new hires and veteran workers. G.M. wants employees to share a greater portion of their health care costs, and to increase work-force productivity and flexibility in factories. Although the company has been earning substantial profits in North America, it has idled four plants in the United States as car sales slide and overall demand weakens.


#439

KEY POINTS

  • Purdue’s board on Sunday approved the much-anticipated bankruptcy filing, days after reaching a tentative deal to settle some 2,000 opioid lawsuits filed by local governments, Native American tribes and states.

  • Purdue and a group of state attorneys general had been negotiating for months to settle the lawsuits over the opioid crisis to avoid a trial, expected to begin in October.

OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Sunday, collapsing under the weight of thousands of lawsuits from states and individuals seeking damages stemming from the opioid crisis.

Purdue’s board approved the much-anticipated bankruptcy filing, days after reaching a tentative deal to settle some 2,000 opioid lawsuits filed by local governments, Native American tribes and states suing the company over the toll of opioids.


(David Bythewood) #440

That story is just not complete without this:


There is speculation this is a move to wipe out the 2,000+ lawsuits against them so that they can keep their money.


#441

:exploding_head: :money_with_wings:

Sure looks like the entire settlement process was just a scam and a stall tactic to give them time to hide their fortune. Once that was tucked away in some secret overseas account, then they could walk away from the settlements – probably planned that from the start. Looking forward to legal analysts on the news weighing in on whether or not that is a criminal act – seems like it should be.


(David Bythewood) #442

Adam Schiff says DNI cited “higher authority” in refusal to turn over whistleblower complaint

Congressman Adam Schiff claimed on Sunday that the official who sits atop the intelligence community is rejecting a subpoena to turn over a whistleblower complaint in order to protect an even higher-ranking official, possibly a top administration official or even President Trump.


#443

State prosecutors in Manhattan have subpoenaed President Trump’s accounting firm to demand eight years of his personal and corporate tax returns, according to several people with knowledge of the matter.

The subpoena opens a new front in a wide-ranging effort to obtain copies of the president’s tax returns, which Mr. Trump initially said he would make public during the 2016 campaign but has since refused to disclose.

The subpoena was issued by the Manhattan district attorney’s office late last month, soon after it opened a criminal investigation into the role that the president and his family business played in hush-money payments made in the run-up to the election.

Both Mr. Trump and his company reimbursed Michael D. Cohen, the president’s former lawyer and fixer, for money Mr. Cohen paid to buy the silence of Stormy Daniels, a pornographic film actress who said she had an affair with Mr. Trump. The president has denied the affair.