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Friday, October 23, 2020

Trump Lied So Much At The Debate, Looks Like We Have to Wait Another Day Or Two For A Complete Fact Check ! - Great Report From Business Insider - Update @ 3:30 I'm Fixing It So You Can Read It !

So, here's a little something to hold you over. Have to run up to the states again early...have a nice weekend, see ya in a few days.

 

 ~ From Reliable Sources  (Some snippets, also a link to the Masters Fact Checker and at the very end you can subscribe)

"Fewer interruptions, more lies

 

The very first sentence President Trump uttered at Thursday's debate was false. Moderator Kristen Welker invoked the "dangerous new phase" of the coronavirus and the 16,000 deaths that were recorded since the first debate. "So as you know," Trump responded, "2.2 million people, modeled out, were expected to die."

 

CNN's Daniel Dale flagged the comment and pointed out, "That was an estimate for *what would happen if no government or person in the US took any mitigation efforts at all.* An extreme-worst-case scenario." In other words, no one "expected" such an agonizing outcome. The AP called this out too: "This was his first line in the debate, and it is false. The U.S. death toll from the pandemic was not expected to be that high."

 

Fact-checkers won't have a complete count of all the dishonesty until Friday or Saturday, but "from a lying perspective, Trump is even worse tonight than in the first debate," Dale said after 45 minutes of debating.

 

What about Joe Biden? Well, "Biden was again imperfect from a fact check perspective," Dale said. "He made at least a few false, misleading, or lacking-in-context claims. Trump was, as usual, a serial liar." There's simply no equivalency between the two and never has been. Dale told Wolf Blitzer on CNN, "With Trump you're like 'I Love Lucy' at the chocolate factory. You just don't know which one to pick up."

 

 >> Check out all of the fact-checks at CNN.com...

 

 >> Earlier in the day, on Twitter, Jay Rosen hit on the "political method" behind all the smearing and lying: "Saturate your speech with things the establishment press can't verify. Maximize conflict with their evidentiary standards. Whichever way they react -- not covering, fact checking -- makes for grievances you can bring to market."

 

The conclusion

 

Trump "didn't set himself on fire like he did at the first debate," Jake Tapper said on CNN. And/but "I don't see anything that will change the trajectory of the race in a significant way."

 

Similarly, Judy Woodruff on PBS: "This was much closer to a real debate than what we saw the last time... A much more valuable debate for the American people than what we heard in the first debate."

 

Trump, at times, went full Fox

 

Oliver Darcy writes: "At times during the debate, Trump spoke the language of Fox News. This was particularly evident when he went after the 'phony' Mueller probe. While consumers of right-wing media probably ate up the moment, those who do not tune into Fox or talk radio might have had a hard time following along. Joshua Green put it well: 'Trump might as well be speaking Swahili -- no one but the most devoted Fox watcher can possibly follow what he's saying.'"

 

 

Biden v. the Fox narrative about him

 

"Biden's senile." "He's fading." "He's in hiding." That's been the message about the former VP from Fox's most popular talk shows. Yet every time Biden takes the stage in front of tens of millions of viewers, he blows up that narrative.

 

Earlier this month, in a phoner on Fox, Trump said "he's mentally gone." Sean Hannity fixated on a boring live shot of Biden's home to imply that the candidate is too weak to campaign. And Laura Ingraham said Wednesday night that "he's losing it." Yet Biden stood up straight and spoke straight to camera and rebutted Trump almost every minute. He had a couple of gaffes, like calling the Proud Boys the "Poor Boys," but nothing eye-popping that I heard. He countered the Fox narrative...

 

Did the Hunter Biden attack fizzle?

 

That's what Oliver Darcy thinks. He writes: "Fox has been in overdrive attacking Biden's son this week, but when Trump brought up the issue at the debate, his attack did not land. Biden instead turned the allegation of foreign business practices back on Trump, bringing up the Chinese bank account Trump had, according to a recent NYT report. As Tim Alberta tweeted, 'the Hunter/China issue fizzled without a memorable moment.' That said, expect this narrative to continue dominating right-wing media through the election..."

 

~~~~~

Wait, here's a gem from Business Insider: Priceless:

 

'Anything Less Than a Vote For Biden Is a Vote Against Democracy': Expensity's CEO Tells Us Why The Company Emailed 10 Million Customers Urging Them To Vote For Biden 

 

By, Tyler Sonnemaker - 10/23/20 

 

"Expensify's approximately 10 million customers received an email on Thursday evening from CEO David Barrett with the subject line "Protect democracy, vote for Biden."

"We are facing an unprecedented attack on the foundations of democracy itself. If you are a US citizen, anything less than a vote for Biden is a vote against democracy," Barrett said in the email, adding that "a vote for Trump is to endorse voter suppression, it really is very basic."

The email went on to criticize the Trump administration's efforts to suppress voter turnout and its false claims about voter fraud. It urged Americans to vote for Biden on November 3.

"I wouldn't be sending this email if this election were just about 'normal issues' — taxes, legislative priorities, healthcare, etc.," Barrett wrote. "But it isn't. This election is a referendum on what limits, if any, we place on our elected leaders to govern us in a fair and representative way. This election will decide if widespread voter suppression is an acceptable governing tactic."

But while Barrett initially proposed the email, actually sending it was a mini democratic process.

He told Business Insider that several of Expensify's 130 or so employees provided input on the letter's content and that more than two-thirds, a "supermajority," ultimately voted to hit send.

"We've always been a very strongly values-driven organization, and we talk a lot about what we stand for, what we believe in, what we'll put our money and efforts behind," Barrett said.

 

"It might seem kind of, like, out of the blue, if you don't really know much about Expensify," he said, adding that the company has previously gotten involved in social issues such as subsidizing low-income families' groceries during the pandemic and engaging with local Black Lives Matter leaders in Portland, Oregon, where the company is based.

Barrett said that while there wasn't universal consensus on sending the letter, "the real world is messy and complicated."

"These are not radical ideas," he said, adding that it was important to take a stand on them nonetheless.

Expensify's decision to weigh in on the 2020 presidential race — and political and social issues more broadly — stands in stark contrast to some other tech companies, such as Facebook and Google, that have sought to limit internal discussion on hot-button issues. In a recent memo, the CEO of the cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase declared an "apolitical culture" at the company and urged dissenters to leave, leading about 60 employees to do exactly that.

Barrett criticized Coinbase's approach as pretending to be apolitical while actually just supporting the status quo.

"If you are a member of a democratic society, you can't opt out of that. Choosing not to participate is also a choice — that is a political decision," he said. "If you are a company that chooses not to engage, that either means, one, our official company stance is that we like the status quo and want to keep it, or two is we don't like the status quo, but we're too cowardly to do anything about it."

 

Read the full email from Expensify CEO David Barrett below:

Subject: Protect democracy, vote for Biden.

I know you don't want to hear this from me. And I guarantee I don't want to say it. But we are facing an unprecedented attack on the foundations of democracy itself. If you are a US citizen, anything less than a vote for Biden is a vote against democracy.

That's right, I'm saying a vote for Trump, a vote for a third-party candidate, or simply not voting at all — they're all the same, and they all mean:

"I care more about my favorite issue than democracy. I believe Trump winning is more important than democracy. I am comfortable standing aside and allowing democracy to be methodically dismantled, in plain sight."

If the polls are accurate, there's a roughly 50% chance that you agree Trump needs to go. You know what to do: show up on November 3rd and vote for Biden. Or even better, don't wait until then: vote today. Go to Vote.org if you need help figuring out how.

The rest of this email is intended to address the concerns of those who disagree, and I'll try to take the most likely questions in turn:

Q: Why do you care so much about democracy?

Democracy is core to our business success, in a variety of ways. Internally, we are a famously "flat" organization — nobody reports to anyone else, and advancement is the result of meeting well defined criteria as judged by the vote of those who have already advanced. How we compensate each other is left up to a team vote as well. Even our external business model depends on individual employees "electing" to adopt Expensify as individuals, and then "campaigning" internally to get it adopted companywide. At every layer, democracy is our core competitive advantage — both as a company, and as a nation. But that advantage is only as strong as the clarity of our rules and the fairness of their application. Any attempt to disrupt the rules or apply them unfairly is a direct threat to the strength of our company, and the strength of our nation.

Q: What gives you the right to tell me what to do?

The first amendment. To be clear, you don't need to listen. But the first amendment exists to encourage people like you and me to find some way to talk about the issues that matter, set aside our differences, and find a common ground on which to collectively govern 331 million citizens. Yes democratic self-rule can be inconvenient. But a burden of democracy is that this is literally our job, so I'm asking all of us to take it seriously.

Q: But you're a company, shouldn't you remain neutral?

Expensify depends on a functioning society and economy; not many expense reports get filed during a civil war. As CEO of this business, it's my job to plot a course through any storm — and all evidence suggests that another 4 (or as Trump has hinted — 8, or more?) years of Trump leadership will damage our democracy to such an extent, I'm obligated on behalf of shareholders to take any action I can to avoid it. I am confident our democracy (and Expensify) can survive a Biden presidency. I can't say the same about Trump. It's truly as simple as that.

Q: Don't you think you're… exaggerating a bit?

I truly wish I was. I wouldn't be sending this email if this election were just about "normal issues" — taxes, legislative priorities, healthcare, etc. But it isn't. This election is a referendum on what limits, if any, we place on our elected leaders to govern us in a fair and representative way. This election will decide if widespread voter suppression is an acceptable governing tactic.

Q: Doesn't everyone suppress votes?

Not like Trump. This is the most heavily litigated election in history, with over 300 lawsuits rushing through the courts before election day. And in every case, Biden is pushing to enable voters while Trump is pushing to suppress them. The trend couldn't be more clear: Biden wants democracy, Trump does not. A vote for Trump is to endorse voter suppression, it really is very basic. This isn't about party politics: if Biden were advocating for half of the voter suppression that Trump is actively doing, then I'd be fighting against Biden, too. This is bigger than politics as usual: this is about the very foundation of our nation.

Q: Isn't Trump just trying to prevent voter fraud?

Voter fraud is virtually nonexistent, as overwhelmingly shown by data showcased by the White House itself. That data comes from the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank counting every single known case of voter fraud since 1948, which adds up to only 1,290 distinct votes over 78 years. In 2016 alone there were 138 million votes. There is just no credible argument that voter fraud is significant, even based on Trump's own data.

Q: Isn't Biden just using more widespread voting to get elected?

Absolutely. This is the heart of the issue. Biden believes that enabling more people to vote will help him win. Biden wins by promoting democracy; Trump wins by suppressing it. A vote for Biden is a vote for democracy.

Q: So what if Trump gets elected by voter suppression, all's fair right?

Well that's what we're going to decide, on November 3rd. Do you want your elected official to win based on the merits of their ideas? Or based on the ruthlessness of their voter suppression? And if you're ok with "just a little suppression" — where do you draw the line?

Q: Why send me this when the polls say Biden is going to win?

The polls said Trump was going to lose last time, and he didn't. But even if the polls can be trusted, that might still not be enough. Trump has stated repeatedly he will only honor an election that he personally feels is fair. So much depending on his personal judgement is worrying, because he has rejected the overwhelming expert consensus that voter fraud has been negligible historically, and has also said he believes it would be impossible to lose a fair election. Accordingly, the only way to ensure a peaceful transition of power is to ensure this election is an overwhelming, undeniable landslide in favor of Biden. Any excuse to question the election is an opportunity for Trump to refuse to leave the White House, plunging this country into a Constitutional crisis bordering on civil war. No matter how slight that risk might be, the consequences of it happening would be so catastrophic to society and the economy, we need to do all we can to prevent it.

So one final plea. As a fellow citizen, I fully support and respect your Constitutional right to disagree — and as an avid supporter of democracy, I value that disagreement. Constructive, well-informed debate (hopefully using the most accurate, least biased news source available) is what makes this nation so exceptional.

But the Constitution is only as strong as the respect we give it. I'm asking you to cherish it close to your heart, and demand that those you elect do the same.

-david
Founder and CEO of Expensify

PS: Agree or disagree? Reply to this email to share your thoughts with Concierge, or hit me up on Twitter @dbarrett to discuss!

PPS: Want to do even more? Support the National Popular Vote to make every vote count equally toward the presidential election, even if you aren't in one of the 12 states deciding this election.

PPPS: Are you annoyed that you received this as a non-US citizen? If you're lucky enough to live in a democracy, then I'd encourage you to protect it and be willing to do uncomfortable things — like emailing millions of customers — to defend it."

 

PRICELESS !!!!  Wow, that's what i like about you, Portland !!

 

 

 

 

~~~~~ 

 

Stay Safe Ya'll. 

 

Oh what the heck...here's the Sisters , a fave of the Raccoons !

 

Thursday, October 22, 2020

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

The Raccoons Were Always Prescient ! - The Master Fact Checks Trump - Trump's Taxes: The Whole Enchilada From The NY Times- Fogerty To Trump: "Cease and Desist!" - More Insults Hurled At Fauci By Dipshit Trump - Will Trump "Take the Deal ? "...The Raccoons Are Skeptical !! -

 
Just a couple of weeks before Trump caught the virus...the Raccoons of the Resistance are at it again....

 
Courtesy The Guardian...(link to the Raccoons !)



I love these guys: " Trump isn't just a liar- he is literally fighting a war against reality. and winning."

But you see, Trump spooked me more than ever this past weekend and last couple of days.  He has been completely unhinged living in an unreality at his insane rallies screaming and holding his arms out as if he were Christ crucified, or at least the last savior on earth.  If you would see a person acting in this fashion on the street, you would instinctively duck and cover or fuckin run.

I kept asking Mike, '...do you think our Intelligence is keeping an eye on him? Do they know something we don't ?'  Which may alas, sound a tad conspiratorial but give me a break, he is unbalanced and dangerous. Lucky for me I read an opinion piece tonight which eased my mind, a bit. But still...

 

Meanwhile, just the facts, ma'am: 


 ~ From CNN:

Fact-checking Trump's Dishonest weekend: the President Made at Least 66 False Or Misleading Claims In three Days

By the Master, Daniel Dale - 10/20/20

 

~~~~~

Don't forget this one...it's long:


 ~ From The New York Times:

 

The President's Taxes  - 10/20/20  - The whole enchilada, everything:

Trump Records Shed New Light On Chinese Business Pursuits 

 

~~~~~


 

  ~ How about him stealing CCR's tune ? I mean, how stupid can he be? How egotistical is he to think the song is actually about him ?  Talk about grandiose delusions.


 ~ From Vanity Fair and note the video, Trump has them playing 'Fortunate Son' as he disembarks AFI...as an entrance theme, as though the lyrics describe him, unfucking real: (I linked it for ya  last sentence in case it doesn't come up, get barf bag ready.)

 

John Fogerty Joins Long List of Artists Demanding Trump Stop Using Their Song

By, Jordan Hoffman - 10/20/20


"John Fogerty, the singer and principal songwriter from Woodstock-era swamp rock group Creedence Clearwater Revival, has joined the growing list of musicians demanding that President Donald Trump stop blasting their tunes at his pep rallies. The fact that the song in question is "Fortunate Son" is particularly egregious, as would be obvious to anyone who listened to the words. It ain't me? Nay, it is thee!

In a tweet, Fogerty wrote "I object to the President using my song, ‘Fortunate Son’ in any way for his campaign. He is using my words and my voice to portray a message that I do not endorse."

The message continued, "Therefore, I am issuing a ‘cease and desist’ order. I wrote this song because, as a veteran, I was disgusted that some people were allowed to be excluded from serving our country because they had access to political and financial privilege. I also wrote about wealthy people not paying their fair share of taxes. Mr. Trump is a prime example of both of these issues. The fact that Mr. Trump also fans the flames of hatred, racism and fear while rewriting recent history, is even more reason to be troubled by his use of my song."

Fogerty served for two years in the Army Reserves during the height of the Vietnam War. Donald Trump, the world's most famous sufferer of bone spurs, thinks soldiers who die fighting to protect the nation are losers.

Rolling Stone reports that the cease and desist argues that Trump's continued use of "Fortunate Son" will "likely to cause confusion, mistake and deceive the public as to the affiliation, connection, sponsorship or association of President Trump by or with John Fogerty."

Other artists that have taken legal action to demand Trump stop using their music include Neil Young, The Rolling Stones, the estate of Tom Petty, and the estate of Leonard Cohen. Victor Willis of Village People has made his displeasure known via social media, as has Brendon Urie of Panic! at the Disco.

Fogerty is no stranger to litigation, as he is possibly the only person in entertainment who was once sued for sounding too much like himself."

 

~~~~~ 




  ~  How about the insults hurled at Dr. Fauci? I'm speechless. Absolutely horrifying. From Democracy Now :

 

"As the U.S. death toll from COVID-19 tops 220,000 — by far the highest in the world — President Trump has escalated his attack on the nation’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci. During a campaign phone call, Trump described Fauci as an idiot.

President Donald Trump: “People are tired of hearing Fauci and all these idiots, these people, these people that have gotten it wrong. Fauci’s a nice guy. He’s been here for 500 years. He’s a disaster.”

Dr. Fauci responded by saying he just wants to focus on combating the virus, saying, “That’s the only thing I really care about. That other stuff, it’s like in 'The Godfather': Nothing personal, strictly business as far as I’m concerned. I just want to do my job and take care of the people of this country.”

While Trump is attacking Fauci, his campaign continues to run an ad that uses Fauci’s words out of context, falsely giving the impression that he endorses the president’s handling of the pandemic.

This comes as COVID-19 cases are surging again across the country. On Monday, nearly 60,000 people in the United States tested positive, and 445 people died.

In Kansas, a coronavirus outbreak in a nursing home has killed 10 people and infected all residents and an unspecified number of staff.

New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham on Monday warned in a tweet, “If COVID-19 continues to exponentially spread like last week, New Mexico will not have the health care and hospital capacity for every New Mexican who needs care.”

Meanwhile, in California, Governor Gavin Newsom has announced the state will conduct its own review of any COVID-19 vaccine before it is distributed in California.

On Capitol Hill, Senate Republicans are planning to move forward a measure on the Paycheck Protection Program today before a larger vote Wednesday on a $500 billion bill. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin are still in talks over a larger coronavirus relief package. Democrats are pushing for a $2.2 trillion aid bill."


 ~~~~~

 

Still, there are observers who really don't believe that Trump will hit all the red buttons should he lose the election:

 ~ From CNN:

 

If Trump Loses, He'll Take the Deal

By, Joe Lockheart - 10/21/20 

 
"CNN)President Trump has repeatedly refused to commit to leave office peacefully if he loses the election. Instead he rails about voter fraud and a rigged election. His untruths and obstinacy are by now an old story, but they remain both dangerous to our democracy and maybe to our lives if the President continues on this path.

Many law enforcement and homeland security experts have raised the alarm about possible violence after a contested election. Nothing in the President's words or behavior suggests that he will be a calming force or will leave the White House without a fight, either in the courthouse or the streets. We all know, after four years of this, that it's a pretty good bet he will make a bad situation worse.
 
I share many of these worries. But I'm not expecting the worst. Not because Trump will have an attack of conscience -- I don't think he has a conscience. And not because he will put the country ahead of his own personal interests -- that fantasy is no longer even debatable.
 
I simply assume, as you should, that if he loses next month, the President will put his own interests ahead of the country's, as he always does. And that may actually guarantee a peaceful transition of power.
 
Donald J. Trump has a powerful survival instinct.
 
Recent news reports have exposed what a terrible businessman he is, over many decades. His presidency has been an international calamity, alienating our allies and empowering dictators and other enemies. America is stumbling through the worst pandemic in 100 years, with an economy that is teetering on the brink.
 
At the center of these tragedies is our President, a member of the survival Hall of Fame. He has survived multiple bankruptcies of his companies, massive legal judgments and a business instinct that can best be described as "How to lose money without even trying." 
 
But somehow, every time, after every colossal failure, he has always been able to repackage himself and sell the next version of Donald Trump to the public. Real estate developer. Casino mogul. Reality TV star. President of the United States.
 
This pattern has been noted by the President's biographer Michael D'Antonio, who says that Trump in times of peril has always found a way to protect the thing he values most -- his self-image. "It's not success as others see it, or achievement as others define it," D'Antonio told me recently. "What matters to him is the story he can tell himself, or sell to himself, in order to feel like he prevailed. That instinct is one of many that allows him second, third and fourth chances at escape and reinvention."
 
And it's those very instincts that may lead a defeated Trump to just leave town.
 
Trump is good at recognizing the personal risks he faces and staying one step ahead of his personal demise. That skill seems likely to kick in right about now, because Trump has a lot to be really worried about.
 
First, even if he pardons himself for all federal crimes, the state of New York and the district attorney of Manhattan are reportedly well along in investigations into his business practices. And since pardoning himself is not yet a tested constitutional right, the Department of Justice could drop a legal anvil on his head next year on multiple issues including obstruction of justice, tax fraud and defrauding the Treasury through payments to the Trump Organization.
 
The second worry is purely financial. He owes hundreds of millions of dollars, according to The New York Times. He will need some flexibility from his creditors and a new business venture to make that money quickly Paid speeches will help, but won't generate a billion dollars.
 
Here's where the survival instinct will kick in. What can Trump give prosecutors, creditors and potential investors to allow him to live his life freely and build the kind of media empire he so craves?
What he can give them is -- wait for it -- a peaceful transition of power. Freedom for peace.
 
To avoid violence in the streets, prosecutors of all stripes may decide it is in their -- and the country's -- interest to cut a deal. Trump may agree to go quietly to save his own skin. There is the basis of the win-win.
 
And the same goes for creditors and investors. There is not a bank in the world whose shareholders would allow any renegotiation of credit terms with a man who's promoting violence on the American streets and creating international instability in the capital markets. No one is going to bankroll the Trump media network if our cities are burning and Trump is lighting the match.
 
So, all sides in theory will have incentive to make a deal. As much as it might pain our new president, peace may be better for the country than revenge. The same goes for politicians of both parties and every institution involved with Trump.
 
In the end, the one thing that has severely damaged this country from Day One -- Trump's utter devotion to himself -- may serve all of us in the end. We know he only cares about himself and will believe whatever he tells himself. That form of narcissism may just be the disease that allows all of us, especially our democracy, to survive this grave threat."
 
 
Hmmmm...so like I heard it through the grapevine that the Raccoons are skeptical.  Eh Raccoons ?
Maybe they read this.
 
 
~~~~~
 
Everything else of course is always here:
 
 
 
 
 
~~~~~
 
Okay, the big debate coming up, computer and tv working, but the phone is not working. Carumba.
 
I hope Joe is right, but I still think Trump is even more psychotic than any of us can even guess... he's one these silent "functioning" psychotic types who leads you to believe he's not all that dangerous...
 
 

 

 
Seriously.  Stay Safe Ya'll.

 

Sunday, October 18, 2020

Where Will Trump Go ???

Okay, more problemas here with the computer - the outfit we are with now have sent over and set up a new router for us, we'll see how it goes.  The reception was so bad we missed the Thursday night Town Halls; once in awhile a picture would come up then disappear and  trying to go back and forth between the stations drove me nuts.  Rubio, our wild feral cat raised from a baby when he was abandoned (who has turned into a twenty four pound tiger lover who chews my fingers) didn't mind because he is crossed eyed. He really is. We are voting tomorrow and mailing the ballots in on Tuesday.

Finally was able to open the email, here's a good take on the state of affairs:

 

 ~ From The Guardian: 

 

"A consistent polling lead for Biden has raised Democrats’ hopes but fears persist that any victory could be disputed by Trump, plunging the US into crisis"

 

Trump Trails Biden With Two Weeks To Go - but there Could Yet Be Surprises 

By, David Smith  10/17/20

 

~~~~~

If Trump goes down, Mike is predicting trouble on the streets across the Nation.

Meanwhile, check this out - 

 

  ~ From CNN:

  * Video *

 Trump Suggests He'd Leave The Country If He Loses To Biden 

 

~~~~~

That's okay with me as long as he takes his supporters with him. No wonder he wants to leave:

 

 ~ From CNN: 

 

The Legal Reckoning Awaiting Donald Trump If He Loses The Election 

By, Kara Scannell and Erica Orden - 10/17/20

 

New York (CNN)If things don't go Donald Trump's way on Election Day, the President may face more serious matters than how to pack up the West Wing.

Without some of the protections afforded him by the presidency, Trump will become vulnerable to multiple investigations looking into possible fraud in his financial business dealings as a private citizen -- both as an individual and through his company. He faces defamation lawsuits sparked by his denials of accusations made by women who have alleged he assaulted them, including E. Jean Carroll, the former magazine columnist who has accused him of rape. And then there are claims he corrupted the presidency for his personal profits.
 
As President, Trump has been able to block and delay several of these investigations and lawsuits -- including a yearlong fight over a subpoena for his tax returns -- in part because of his official position. Many of those matters have wound through the courts and will come to a head whether he is reelected or not. 
 
But with the polls showing that Democratic rival Joe Biden is leading in the race, the stakes become much higher for Trump if he loses the election. A raft of legal issues, including a criminal investigation by New York prosecutors, will come into focus in the weeks after Election Day. 
 
"In every regard, his leaving office makes it easier for prosecutors and plaintiffs in civil cases to pursue their cases against him," said Harry Sandick, a former federal prosecutor in the Manhattan US attorney's office. "For example, he is claiming a higher protection from subpoenas in the criminal cases and also in the congressional subpoena cases, [and that] is based largely on the fact that he is President." 
 
Some have suggested a formal apparatus for investigating Trump after he leaves office. Rep. Eric Swalwell, a California Democrat, has floated the creation of a "Presidential Crimes Commission," made up of independent prosecutors who can examine "those who enabled a corrupt president," as he put it in an August tweet. "Example 1: Sabotaging the mail to win an election." 
 
The most serious legal threat facing Trump is the Manhattan district attorney's broad criminal investigation into the financial workings of the Trump Organization. Prosecutors have suggested in court filings that the investigation could examine whether the President and his company engaged in bank fraud, insurance fraud, criminal tax fraud and falsification of business records. 
 
In the course of that probe, Trump has challenged a subpoena to his accounting firm for eight years of tax returns and financial records. Five courts have ruled the subpoena is valid, and last week Trump faced the latest setback when a federal appellate court denied his appeal, ruling that the grand jury subpoena was not overly broad or issued in bad faith. On Tuesday, Trump's lawyers asked the Supreme Court to block the enforcement of the subpoena to allow it time to appeal to the court. Trump already lost an appeal to the highest court in July, when it ruled that the president is not immune from a state grand jury subpoena. 
 
New York prosecutors have said the tax records, working papers and documentation around business transactions are crucial to their investigation, which has been underway for more than a year.
There are legal questions as to whether a state prosecutor could file charges against a sitting president.
"He's so powerful right now. They know that they can't indict him right now so there is an incentive to build their case and get ready. I think what happens if he loses and leaves office that things will move very quickly," said Jennifer Rodgers, a CNN legal analyst and former federal prosecutor.

Playing fast and loose with value of company assets

The New York attorney general is also proceeding with a separate civil investigation into the Trump Organization and whether it improperly inflated the value of certain assets in some instances and lowered them in others, in an effort to secure loans and obtain economic and tax benefits.
 
Investigators are looking into the tax breaks taken at the Trump Seven Springs property in Bedford, New York, and the Trump National Golf Club in Los Angeles. They are also investigating the valuation of a Trump office tower on Wall Street and the forgiveness of a more than $100 million loan on the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Chicago. 
 
Eric Trump, executive vice president of the Trump Organization, sat remotely for a deposition with civil investigators last week. The lawyers are seeking additional depositions with Sheri Dillon, Trump's longtime tax lawyer. 
 
Lawyers for the Trump Organization have said in court documents that they believe New York Attorney General Letitia James is politically motivated, and they initially tried to push off Eric Trump's deposition until after Election Day, but a judge rejected that request. The state lawyers, who have said they are not coordinating with any criminal law enforcement agency, said their investigation is civil in nature. But they could make a criminal referral if they believe there is enough evidence. 
 
"With a big-time executive, when they do these multiple or hundreds of millions of dollar transactions, they're always advised by lawyers and accountants," said Dan Alonso, a former prosecutor with the Manhattan district attorney's office. "There are a lot of layers between messing up the tax treatment and criminal liability on the part of the President, that's a big leap."

Opening the floodgates to lawsuits

If Trump is not reelected, he will lose the deference that courts have given to sitting presidents, opening the floodgates for many lawsuits. 
 
The state attorneys general of Washington, DC, and Maryland sued the President in 2017, alleging he corruptly profited off his position by placing his financial interests above those of American citizens.
The state investigators prepared more than 30 subpoenas, including to the Trump Organization, and others relating to the Trump businesses. Trump sued to block the lawsuit, which alleges he violated the emoluments clause of the Constitution by virtue of the hundreds of thousands of dollars that foreign governments and others have spent at his properties. Trump has appealed the ruling to the Supreme Court, which has not yet decided whether to hear the case. A second emoluments lawsuit brought by hotel and restaurant operators in New York is also pending. 
 
In August, after a state court judge denied Trump's effort to delay a defamation lawsuit, the President deployed the Department of Justice to attempt to insert itself in the nearly yearlong litigation. The Justice Department asked a federal judge to substitute itself in place of Trump in a defamation lawsuit brought by Carroll, a onetime Elle magazine advice columnist, who accused the President of raping her in a department store dressing room in the mid-1990s. Trump has denied the allegation. 
 
The move, if granted, could effectively kill the lawsuit, which has been winding through the courts since last November, because the Justice Department cannot be sued for defamation. A judge has scheduled a hearing in the case for Wednesday. Carroll has indicated she is seeking to depose the President under oath and to compare with a sample of male genetic material she says is on the dress she wore the day of the alleged rape. 
 
Other lawsuits have also been on hold by virtue of Trump's status as President. 
 
Another case awaiting decision is a defamation lawsuit filed in New York state court by a former contestant on "The Apprentice," Summer Zervos, who claims Trump sexually assaulted her in 2007. Zervos has said Trump kissed her on the lips during a lunch meeting in his New York City office and has alleged he kissed her aggressively and touched her breast during another encounter in Beverly Hills. She sued after she received harassment and threats following his denial of her claims, according to court filings. 
 
After a New York state court judge denied Trump's effort to dismiss Zervos' lawsuit, the President appealed the ruling, arguing that the Constitution's Supremacy Clause bars a state court from hearing an action against a sitting president. The Zervos case is now awaiting a ruling by the New York state Court of Appeals on the question of whether the state courts have jurisdiction over him while he occupies the White House. 
 
The president's niece, Mary Trump, is also suing Trump, his sister and the estate of their deceased brother for fraud, alleging they deprived her of her interests in the family real estate empire built by Fred Trump Sr. 
 
In these civil cases, where in some instances Trump has sought to avoid testifying or providing DNA evidence, Sandick said Trump will lose the ability to argue he is afforded certain protections by the White House if he ends up exiting the Oval Office. "If he's not President, all of that goes away."

Less sway over potential witnesses

One wild card is what would happen to a decade-long civil tax audit conducted by the IRS, which falls under the Treasury Department, and whether it could be escalated under a Biden administration to the Justice Department for review. According to The New York Times, the IRS is looking at a $72.9 million tax refund credit Trump claimed. 
 
Lawyers say a less obvious factor that could change if Biden wins is the sway Trump has held over accountants, bankers and those in his inner circle who could be crucial witnesses to authorities. 
 
"They're going to be much less afraid to talk about someone who is no longer the president," Rodgers said. She added that a case involving allegations of false statements to banks or tax fraud would likely be heavily documented, which, once the subpoena for the tax returns is produced, could aid the investigation. 
 
Of course, if Trump is reelected, it is possible he may be able to run out the statute of limitations, which for some crimes in New York state law is five to six years; push these lawsuits out another four years; or simply continue to enjoy the benefit of the Department of Justice's Office of Legal Counsel opinion that says a sitting president can't be indicted. 
 
The Office of Legal Counsel memo has already insulated Trump from possible indictment in two instances: the special counsel investigation led by Robert Mueller, which found evidence that Trump had committed obstruction of justice but didn't charge him, and the investigation by the US Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York, which cited Trump as "Individual 1" in charging his former lawyer Michael Cohen with campaign finance crimes for facilitating hush-money payments to two women who alleged affairs with Trump. Trump has denied the affairs. Cohen pleaded guilty and said under oath that Trump had directed him to break the law. Cohen was reimbursed for those payments from the Trump Organization well into 2017, which could extend the statute of limitations on that crime into 2022. Some lawyers have speculated that it's possible Trump would attempt to pardon himself from federal crimes before he leaves office. 
 
The decision of whether to revive those investigations would fall to a Biden administration and top law enforcement officials leading the Justice Department and Manhattan US attorney's office.
In testimony before Congress, Mueller was asked by Republican Rep. Ken Buck of Colorado, "Could you charge the President with a crime after he left office?"
"Yes," Mueller replied. 
 
"You believe that he committed -- you could charge the President of the United States with obstruction of justice after he left office?" Buck asked. 
 
Mueller answered: "Yes."


~~~~~

So where would Trump go? Let's not get too far ahead of ourselves but I imagine it would be somewhere where there are no extradition laws.  On second thought, I hope he stays and they nail him, and I think someone should  charge him with crimes against humanity and the environment.  The bigger they are, the harder they fall.

Y'all Stay Safe.

Sing it Donald: 

Thursday, October 15, 2020

Does Mexico Know About This One ?

 If they do, I haven't heard any reactions so far. From the Master of Fact Checkers, Daniel Dale:


 ~ From CNN:

 

Click title link for video :


Fact Check: Trump Is Still Falsely Claiming That Mexico Is Paying For His Border Wall

 

Updated 9:35 PM ET, Wed October 14, 2020

 

 

"Washington (CNN)In 2016, President Donald Trump promised at his campaign rallies that Mexico would pay for the giant wall he planned to build on its border.

Running for reelection four years later, the President is now declaring at his rallies that Mexico is indeed paying for the wall.
 
"And by the way, Mexico is paying," Trump said at a rally in Sanford, Florida, on Monday. "They hate to say it: Mexico is paying for it." 
 
"And Mexico is paying for the wall, by the way. You know that. I've been saying it. They hate to hear that. But they're paying," Trump said at a rally in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, on Tuesday. 
 
"And as I said, Mexico is paying for the wall," he added at a rally in Des Moines, Iowa, on Wednesday.
 
 
Facts First: This is a lie. Mexico hasn't contributed any money toward the construction of the border wall. The wall is being funded by the US government.
"It is, so far, all American taxpayers' money," said Tony Payan, director of the Center for the United States and Mexico at Rice University's Baker Institute for Public Policy.
 
"As far as I know, there is no basis for President Trump's comments that Mexico will pay for the wall, period," said Stephen Yale-Loehr, professor of immigration practice at Cornell Law School. "They have not in the past, and I have not seen anything to indicate a change in the future."
 
Trump has been making this claim since earlier in his term. It has never been true.
 
The wall has been funded in part with US federal money appropriated by Congress and in part with US federal money Trump has unilaterally -- and controversially -- diverted to the project from other programs. According to an official update emailed to CNN in September by US Customs and Border Protection, Trump is using $6.3 billion diverted from counter-narcotics funding, $3.6 billion diverted from military construction funding, just over $600 million from the Treasury Forfeiture Fund and just over $5 billion in directly appropriated funds. (There are ongoing legal challenges about Trump's use of funds that were not directly appropriated.)
 
As of September 18, 331 miles of wall had been built under Trump, according to the official update. Of those, nine miles had been built where no primary barriers existed before; 295 miles had been built in place of old barriers the government says were "dilapidated and/or outdated"; 27 miles were new "secondary wall" to reinforce primary barriers. 
 
The Mexican government has helped the Trump administration on immigration in other significant ways. For example, it has deployed thousands of federal forces to intercept migrants before they reach the US. Some analysts have described this effort as a de facto wall.
Still, Trump's wall is a physical project that costs billions of dollars. And that money is coming from Americans.

Varying explanations

Trump has sometimes made additional false claims about how the wall is being funded.
 
In February, Trump claimed that "redemption money" from undocumented immigrants was paying for the project. Experts on immigration policy said that "redemption money" is not even a real term -- and they said Trump was still wrong even if he meant remittance money, the payments immigrants send back to their countries of origin; Trump never implemented his 2016 campaign proposal to tax remittances to fund the wall. 
 
Moments after he claimed at the Monday rally that Mexico is paying for the wall, Trump said, "We're putting a border tax on for cars and trucks that go across. It'll much more than pay for our wall. Starting soon." He said the same at the Tuesday rally: "You know, we're putting a charge on where the cars go through. And it'll more than pay for the wall." 
 
He made similar comments in August -- but the experts we contacted on Tuesday said they still did not know what Trump was talking about.
 
"I haven't heard any concrete proposals for a border tax to pay for the wall," Andrew Selee, the president of the Migration Policy Institute think tank, said in an email. "It may just be the kind of campaign rhetoric that always springs up at election time, or maybe the President has a new proposal for a border tax in mind, but this doesn't appear to have been a policy proposal from the White House or any agency that I know of."
 
The White House declined to comment Tuesday on our request to explain how Mexico is paying for the wall or to provide any specifics about the supposed "border tax." The Trump campaign did not respond to our request for comment."

 

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

McConnell Warns His Troops: "Democrats Are On Fire !" Another Wrap Up Monday

 Hooray, the computer is working. In a synoptic nutshell:

 

 ~ From CNN: (videos enclosed on the links)

 

Trump Mocks Virus As He Launches Potential Superspreader Sprint To Win Reelection 

Updated 12:39 AM ET, Tue October 13, 2020

 


"CNN)Donald Trump on Monday launched a three-week quest to save his presidency, behaving as though the pandemic that has killed 215,000 Americans was already a memory in front of a packed-in crowd -- even amid chilling new warnings about the resurgent virus.

In his first rally since his own bout with Covid-19, Trump painted a deeply dishonest picture of the nation's battle with the disease, mocked Biden over social distancing and vowed victory on November 3 as he began a frantic push to Election Day, marked by multiple rallies a day that could act as superspreader events.
 
"I feel so powerful, I'll walk into that audience. I'll walk in there, I'll kiss everyone in that audience," Trump said in Sanford, Florida, showing his illness did not teach him to respect his own government's pandemic guidelines. "I'll kiss the guys and the beautiful women and the -- everybody. I'll just give everybody a big, fat kiss."
 
The President's return to the campaign trail coincided with rising alarm among Republicans about Trump's sliding poll numbers and after CNN reported that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell recently warned Democrats are "on fire." Democratic nominee Joe Biden on Monday seized on the start of confirmation hearings from Trump's Supreme Court pick Amy Coney Barrett to warn that the GOP was ramming through the nomination in a last ditch bid to destroy the Affordable Care Act.
 
At his Florida rally, Trump fed off the large crowd's energy during his hour-long performance and ran through his demagogic list of favored political attacks, from law and order to his false claims of voting irregularities. He took the stage hours after the White House physician said he posted negative Covid-19 tests in consecutive days.
 
"(Biden) may be the worst presidential candidate in history and I got him," Trump said, despite a flurry of recent polls showing him down by double digits to the former vice president and trailing in most swing states.
 
Biden campaigned Monday in Ohio, a state once seen as a sure fire bet for Trump that Democrats think is now in play, and synchronized his message with Capitol Hill colleagues using the Barrett nomination to supercharge claims that she would be a vessel to finally kill off Obamacare, which faces its next date with destiny in the court a week after the election.
 
"In the middle of this pandemic, why do Republicans have time to hold a hearing on the Supreme Court instead of providing the significant economic need for localities?" Biden asked. "I'll tell you why. It's about finally getting his wish to wipe out the Affordable Care Act."
 
Biden also rebuked Trump for his "reckless" conduct since his diagnosis, saying: "The longer Donald Trump is president the more reckless he seems to get."

Trump says his crowds are 'the real polls'

Taken in isolation, Trump's rally looked like any other big campaign event three weeks before an Election Day. While some supporters wore masks behind him in the camera shot, many people in the big, outdoor crowd did not.
 
And despite presiding over a botched pandemic response, Trump claimed he had saved millions of lives. After turning his White House into a superspreader that caused multiple infections, the President also criticized Biden for holding socially distanced events in which attendees sit in designated circles.
 
"They only have the circles because that's the only way they can fill up the room," the President said, before gazing out at his own large and raucous crowd that contravenes every government recommendation on combating the virus and saying: "These are the real polls."
 
But medical experts expressed despair at Trump's decision to gather huge crowds during a worsening pandemic, ahead of a swing that Trump aides said Monday would involve multiple rallies each day in the coming weeks.
 
"I promise you, the virus is there, whether it is an indoor event or an outdoor event in these large gatherings," said Dr. William Schaffner, professor of health policy and preventive medicine at Vanderbilt University on CNN's Erin Burnett "OutFront," who added that the images of Trump's rally made him "weep."
 
"Some of those people will become sick, they will spread it to others when they get home and they will become sick. These are accelerator events that promote the distribution of the virus," Schaffner said.
Trump's mockery of his own government's recommendations -- his rallies are almost the only mass participation events taking place in the world right now -- came amid fast darkening warnings about the months ahead.
 
The government's top infectious disease specialist, Dr. Anthony Fauci, warned that rallies like the one Trump held on Monday night are "asking for trouble."
"Because when you look at what is going on in the United States, it is really very troublesome," Fauci told CNN's Jake Tapper.
 
Later, Fauci delivered an even more dire warning about a pandemic that is seeing rising cases in 31 one states as a fall spike -- that is effectively being ignored by a negligent White House -- begins to gather pace.
 
"I think we're facing a whole lot of trouble," Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, referring to coronavirus infections which have recently climbed back above 50,000 a day.
 
"That's a bad place to be when you're going into the cooler weather of the fall and the colder weather of the winter," Fauci said.

US doing worse that other nations in virus deaths

Trump's claim to have saved millions of lives is based on the presumption that there would have been many more deaths had no counter-measures been taken against the disease -- a scenario no one was seriously advocating.
 
New research on Monday exposed the President's misinformation and showed in staggering clarity how the US has done far worse than many other industrialized nations in saving lives during the pandemic. After May 10, the US had more deaths per 100,000 people than other high mortality countries featured in a study published in the medical journal JAMA.
 
Countries including South Korea, Japan and Australia recorded fewer than five deaths per 100,000 people. If the US had comparable death rates to Australia since the beginning of the pandemic, it would have had 187,661 fewer deaths, according to the study conducted by Alyssa Bilinski, a PhD candidate at Harvard University, and Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, vice provost of global initiatives and professor at the University of Pennsylvania.
 
If the US had comparable death rates to Canada it would have had 117,622 fewer deaths. And it would have recorded 96,763 fewer deaths if it had comparable death rates to France.

GOP alarm over Trump's prospects

In the CNN Poll of Polls on Monday, Biden led Trump by 11 points. Fresh New York Times/Siena surveys in battlegrounds Michigan and Wisconsin released Monday showed the Democrat up 6 points and 10 points, respectively.
 
Trump is hoping to use his return to the campaign trail to portray himself as triumphing over Covid-19 and to solidify his assurances to Americans there is nothing to fear from the disease, despite its rising nationwide threat.
 
The President -- who has rarely tried to reach beyond his political base -- is counting on a massive turnout not just from his 2016 supporters but also from new working class white voters who identify with him culturally but who have rarely cast a vote in previous elections. Trump's rally on Monday was for instance peppered with comments about the "Panhandle," the portion of northern Florida where he performed especially strongly in 2016.
 
CNN White House reporter Kevin Liptak reported Monday that Trump is pressing his advisers to organize multiple rallies in the next few weeks as he tries to unleash a late wave of momentum to overhaul Biden.
 
The President is pining for two and three events a day -- which in the circumstances could turn into multiple superspreader events -- to revive the spirit of his push up to his shock victory over Hillary Clinton four years ago.
 
But there are signs that the GOP hierarchy in Washington is not seeing the similarities with 2016, with some seeing Trump's antics, including a boorish performance at the first presidential debate, as giving Democrats a golden opportunity to grab both the White House and Senate.
 
McConnell delivered his warning about Democrats being "on fire" in a call with lobbyists recently, according to someone familiar with the remarks.
 
Senate Republicans who never expected to have a serious challenge, such as Lindsey Graham in South Carolina and Joni Ernst in Iowa, are at serious risk. Graham, who as Senate Judiciary Committee chairman is leading the Barrett hearings, is facing a challenger, Jaime Harrison, who just shattered the single quarter fundraising record for a Senate race with $57 million.
 
And Trump's itinerary for later this week also indicates a campaign playing defense as he travels to Iowa, Pennsylvania and North Carolina -- all states he won four years ago and where he is in danger of losing now."

 ~~~~~

 

 Everyone knows we're going to lose this round to Amy Coney Barrett, but the tickle will be if Lindsay Graham loses his Senate seat and is sent back to the Plantation; that upset and a few more will put us in the position to override the arch conservative votes of the Supreme Court, right ?

So hang on to yer seats and stay calm (if you can).  Vons has this great organic popcorn with white cheddar cheese, check it out, you may need it.

Lots more here, including the confirmation hearings:

Democracy Now !

 

~~~~~~

The " Democrats are on fire !"

 

They're waitin for ya Mitch...

 

So says the Turtleman; but not  in the sense of burning up and burning out as Trump is doing.  More like gaining momentum at a rapid and feverish pace in every possible direction.

There are so many "fire" songs...I thought this one was the best  -  Scorcese used it in one of his scenes as background for his frenetic anti-hero with helicopters flying overhead (hilarious) and it's very hyper. When I hear it I envision lots of energy with thousands of robust and pissed off donkeys on a stampede chasing Mitch The Turtleman out of the Senate chamber from all directions...wow, I must need sleep. 

 Anyway, Nilsson was a completely cool guy ..you might remember him from years ago on the Smothers Brothers. This is the longer version.

Stay Safe Y'all !