28 thoughts on “Countdown”

  1. while we’re counting, count one more trumpski indicted
    the guardian:
    A conservative US political activist romantically linked to the Russian agent Maria Butina has been indicted by a federal grand jury on wire fraud and money laundering charges, the US attorney’s office in South Dakota has said.
    Paul Erickson, 56, was indicted on 11 counts of wire fraud and money laundering on Tuesday and pleaded not guilty to the charges in an appearance before US magistrate judge Mark Moreno, the office said. Erickson’s attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
    Erickson is a well-known figure in Republican and conservative circles and was a senior official in Pat Buchanan’s 1992 Republican presidential campaign. He was romantically linked to Butina, a 30-year-old native of Siberia, who pleaded guilty in December to conspiracy.
    Butina admitted working with a top Russian official to infiltrate the powerful National Rifle Association gun rights group and to make inroads with American conservatives and the Republican party as an agent for Moscow.
    A former graduate student at American University in Washington, Butina had publicly advocated for gun rights. She was the first Russian to be convicted of working to influence US policy during the 2016 presidential race.
    Erickson’s indictment did not refer to Butina by name, but it indicates he made a payment of $8,000 to an “MB” in June 2015 and another payment of $1,000 to MB in March 2017. The indictment also indicates he paid American University $20,472.09 in June 2017.
    The indictment against Erickson alleges that between 1996 and 2018 he made “false and fraudulent representations” to people in South Dakota and elsewhere about his business schemes in an effort to convince potential investors to give him money, the US attorney’s office said.
    Erickson owned and operated Compass Care, Investing with Dignity, and an unnamed venture to develop land in the Bakken oilfields in North Dakota, it added.
    He faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison on each count as well as possible fines. He was released on bond and no date has been set for a trial.

  2. old macdonald use to have a farm e-i-e-i-no mo
    President Donald Trump’s trade war is magnifying some of the toughest farm conditions since the crisis that bankrupted thousands of farmers in the 1980s — and threatening a constituency crucial to his reelection hopes.
    The president’s trade policies have sent U.S. agricultural exports plunging, exacerbating already difficult economic conditions facing farmers. Average farm income has fallen to near 15-year lows under Trump, and in some areas of the country, farm bankruptcies are soaring.
    Hundreds of farmers and business representatives are in Washington this week to pressure lawmakers and the Trump administration to end the trade war by describing the hardships they are facing.
    “A lot of farmers are going to give the president the benefit of the doubt, and have to date. But the longer the trade war goes on, the more that dynamic changes,” said Brian Kuehl, executive director of Farmers for Free Trade, one of the groups organizing the fly-in.
    There are signs that agriculture’s compounding challenges are already pushing some producers over the edge — at least in certain regions and sectors.
    To be sure, most experts don’t think the conditions will get back to the devastation of the 1980s when interest rates soared and farmland values plummeted. That drove thousands of farms into foreclosure, shuttered dozens of agricultural banks and transformed some rural communities into ghost towns.
    But as the 2019 planting season nears, the continuing trade war, higher interest rates and glut of various commodities could require farmers to lean on the government for relief.
    Some of the same pieces from the 1980s are now falling into place. Headwinds like Trump’s trade feuds, rising operating costs and higher interest rates are converging. And if a recession in the broader economy strikes, which some economists expect in the near term, it could dump agriculture into a full-blown disaster.
    The recent five-week shutdown froze government programs to assist producers with financing, planting decisions and much more. If another shutdown comes after Feb. 15, it will seriously interfere with the spring planting season, further complicating the picture for farmers.

  3. while we’re asking all the pols to resign for dissing others who’ve been abused racially or ethnically (blackface, yellowface, redface, Hispanic costume caricaturing) why not add those who’ve disparaged, made fun of or ridiculed women by making sexist remarks or going drag?  for example:   

    Yes, it’s former NYC mayor Rody Giuliani in drag having his “breasts” shamelessly violated by “Apprentice” tycoon Donald Trump. Clip from new doc GIULIANI TIME, by Kevin Keating, now available on DVD from Cinema Libre Studio at http://www.cinemalibrestore.com.

  4. how about a pol who calls people ethnic nicknames, denied a person’s birthright citizenship …  or made bet on someone else’s DNA then welched on the bet? 
    remember this from the Spokane WA Spokesman-Review last Oct:
     Warren DNA analysis points to Native American heritage
    The Massachusetts Democrat and potential 2020 presidential contender challenged Trump to make good on his pledge to donate $1 million to charity if she provided proof of Native American heritage, a moment that was caught on video. Trump falsely denied ever making the offer.
    The analysis was done by Stanford University professor Carlos D. Bustamante, a prominent expert in the field. He concluded that the great majority of Warren’s ancestry is European but added that the results “strongly support” the existence of a Native American ancestor.
    In his report, Bustamante said he analyzed Warren’s sample without knowing the identity of the donor. He concluded that Warren’s pure Native American ancestor likely lived six to 10 generations ago, and that it was impossible to determine the individual’s tribal connection.
    If Warren’s Native American ancestry were six generations removed, it could mesh with an 1894 document the New England Genealogical Society previously unearthed suggesting Warren’s great-great-great-grandmother, O.C. Sarah Smith, was at least partially Native American, making Warren 1/32nd Native American.
    Bustamante replied: “The facts suggest that you absolutely have Native American ancestry in your pedigree.”
    The senator released personnel files earlier this year seeking to dispute critics who have charged that the former Harvard Law School professor advanced her law career with a narrative she is a descendant of Cherokee and Delaware tribes.
    Warren has denied using her Native American heritage to gain any advantage.
    […]… Warren said she “never expected the president of the United States to use my family’s story as a racist political joke against Native American history, culture, and people – over, and over, and over.”
    In a tweet directed at Trump, Warren said: “Remember saying on (July 5) that you’d give $1M to a charity of my choice if my DNA showed Native American ancestry?” She went on to request that the president send a check to National Indigenous Women’s Resource Center.

  5. Pat, your 0843. Not knowing you, I’m pretty sure my Welsh grandmother, Jeannie Williams, might be offended.

  6. bink, it depends on the spirit in which it’s done.  
    say skits by drunken college frat boys in drag ?
    rude caricatures of suffragettes and feminists  also got big laughs 

  7. I assume the pejorative “welch” is of English origin?  It really never occurred to me. 
    Bink, beats me. I remember laughing at Uncle Milty

  8. pogo, ‘fraid so according to OED
    Origin uncertain; perhaps < Welsh adj., on account of alleged dishonesty of Welsh people (see note). Earlier currency is probably implied by welsher n.1, welshing n., and welshing adj.
    Sometimes considered offensive in view of the conjectured connection with Welsh people.

    and from wikidiff:  Welsh vs Welch – What’s the difference?
    Welch is an alternative form of welsh.
    As verbs the difference between welsh and welch
    is that welsh is (offensive) to swindle someone by not paying a debt, especially a gambling debt while welch is to fail to repay a small debt.

  9. NY Times:
    Virginia Mulls Misdeeds of Its Leaders and Braces for More Turmoil
    The allegations involving racist history spread to Republicans for the first time Thursday, when The Virginian-Pilot reported that Senate Majority Leader Thomas K. Norment Jr. helped oversee a Virginia Military Institute yearbook that featured racist photographs and slurs, including blackface.
    Mr. Norment, who has been a state senator since 1992, was managing editor of the yearbook, called The Bomb, in 1968, the Pilot reported. The paper said that on one page of the yearbook, a student poses in blackface at a party, while another page features a photograph of two men in blackface holding a football.

  10. all this disparagement reminds me of the “merry minuet” lyrics
    The whole world is festering with unhappy souls
    The french hate the Germans, the Germans hate the Poles
    Italians hate Yugoslavs, South Africans hate the Dutch
    And I don’t like anybody very much!!
    What nature doesn’t do to us
    Will be done by our fellow man

  11. I don’t use other peoples material, patd.

    It’s easy to be strident on the ‘net.  Once society realizes that internet Social Justice Warriors are just sad people trying to make other people miserable, remotely, this phenomenon will pass.  It’s an easy way to destroy people, for the time being- eventually we will all be destroyed, standards will be lowered, and we can go from there.

    Hunker down until then.

    Have a good day, 3 other participants.  

  12. Pitchers and catchers report on 13 Feb. This MLB season will feature a season-long celebration of Jackie Robinson.
    But it begins with the passing of Frank Robinson, the only player ever to be named MVP of both the AL and NL, and the first African American manager in MLB history. 

  13. Never happened before. Unlimited presidential harassment. …
    Watergate. Whitewater. Nixon. Clinton. 
    Fuck you, asshole. 
    How’s that?

  14. Travis, wtf you been?  Baseball report? Someone has to I guess. Let me know whether some guy named Musgrave is in the Rockies bullpen. 

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