Does Trump’s slashed Foreign Aid Budget give China the Advantage?

USAID

The US foreign aid budget is not mainly about helping the poor.  It is an instrument for buying influence in countries important to the US.  The poorest countries in the world do not get much help from the US. Israel, which is a wealthy country, gets over $3 billion a year, some of it going to Israeli civilians!  Egypt is a relatively poor country, but most US aid to Cairo goes to the Egyptian military.  In fact, they don’t need or know what to Continue Reading...

Whoppers Big and Small in Trump’s Speech

TRUMP_CONGRESS

This is classic dumb guy wedding speech writing: “The chorus of their dating became an earthquake of their love.” – Samantha Bee on Trump’s speech Donald Trump just gave a fact-free, and detail-free, speech to a joint session of Congress.  Early on in the evening, the president – who has loaded his cabinet with billionaires and his administration with former Goldman Sachs executives – earned audible guffaws from the assembled lawmakers when he Continue Reading...

Russia Scandal Math: How The President Called Trump Can Be Brought Down Hard

TRUMP_RUSSIA

Everything, as they say, is now perfectly clear.  Except what still isn't clear at all.  If you, like many millions of Americans, are praying that the Donald Trump presidency crashes and burns, the clearest path not involving a Caine Mutiny moment in which he gets frog-walked from the Oval Office in a straightjacket as he clutches his smartphone and madly tweets is to follow the scent of the smoking guns in the Russia scandal.  There are several Continue Reading...

Random Observations on Trump’s Speech to Congress Last Night

TRUMP

1. Let's get this out of the way up top: President Donald Trump's exploitation of Carryn Owens, the widow of Ryan Owens, a Navy SEAL who died in a fuck-up of a raid in Yemen, induced the kind of nausea you usually feel when you accidentally catch a glimpse of a pus-draining video.  While anonymous "senior officials" (who could be Trump - really) argue over whether or not any decent intelligence was gotten from the raid (spoiler: they didn't), Continue Reading...

Film Review: Do Not Resist

Outrage In Missouri Town After Police Shooting Of 18-Yr-Old Man

The Post-9/11 Iron Heel of the State The chillingly named Do Not Resist, which won the Tribecca Film Festival’s Best Documentary Feature award, opens with a tense demonstration shot at Ferguson, Missouri in 2014 only 10 days after the fatal police shooting of Michael Brown, an African American youth not carrying any weapons.  The footage shows heavily armed, helmeted officers with body armor, shields and Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Continue Reading...

Holocaust Denial and Religious Persecution, Courtesy of the White House

HOLOCAUST_DENIAL

Friday was Holocaust Remembrance Day. As you may have heard, the White house marked the occasion with this statement: It is with a heavy heart and somber mind that we remember and honor the victims, survivors, heroes of the Holocaust.  It is impossible to fully fathom the depravity and horror inflicted on innocent people by Nazi terror. Yet, we know that in the darkest hours of humanity, light shines the brightest.‎  As we remember those who Continue Reading...

A Man Walks Into A Bar: Why We’ll Take Small Victories Over Cheeto Where We Can

BOWLING_GREEN

Yes, it sounds like a bad joke, but could the tide have turned in the false news wars by a guy walking into a bar?   The answer is maybe, but in any event we'll take small victories where we can in the long slog to take down Cheeto Jesus.   A mere three weeks into his presidency, Donald Trump has historically low popularity ratings, but still has the unwavering support of the pitchfork posse while rumors of a congressional Republican revolt Continue Reading...