AMERICAblog NewsNews – AMERICAblog News http://americablog.com A great nation deserves the truth // One of America's top progressive sites for news and opinion Wed, 18 Apr 2018 19:42:37 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8.6 I plead inHannity, your honor http://americablog.com/2018/04/i-plead-inhannity-your-honor.html http://americablog.com/2018/04/i-plead-inhannity-your-honor.html#respond Tue, 17 Apr 2018 22:11:59 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144309 In today’s UnPresidented podcast Cliff and I share a collective howl over the revelation that Fox News’ Sean Hannity is Trump-lawyer Michael Cohen’s secret third client; and we also thoroughly enjoyed James Comey’s recent interview with George Stephanopoulos, in which Comey said Trump was unfit for office and possibly compromised by the Russians. Those are […]

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In today’s UnPresidented podcast Cliff and I share a collective howl over the revelation that Fox News’ Sean Hannity is Trump-lawyer Michael Cohen’s secret third client; and we also thoroughly enjoyed James Comey’s recent interview with George Stephanopoulos, in which Comey said Trump was unfit for office and possibly compromised by the Russians.

Those are today’s two big topics in what has already become a busy news week. Hope you enjoy.

This is a 14-minute snippet of the hour-long interview — listen to the full episode here with a $5/month subscription.

Please subscribe to the UnPresidented Podcast on iTunes (www.UnPresidentedPodcast.com) and leave us a review. Find out more about us, and support the show by subscribing to our premium episodes on Patreon.

(Hannity image by Gage Skidmore.)

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Hey Donald, urine trouble http://americablog.com/2018/04/hey-donald-urine-trouble.html http://americablog.com/2018/04/hey-donald-urine-trouble.html#respond Fri, 13 Apr 2018 22:04:21 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144301 In today’s premium podcast episode, Cliff and I talk about the Comey book, and all of the accompanying scandals that fed into it this week, including the FBI raid on Trump’s lawyer Michael Cohen, reports that a Trump Tower doorman was paid hush money to squelch a rumor about Trump fathering a child out of […]

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In today’s premium podcast episode, Cliff and I talk about the Comey book, and all of the accompanying scandals that fed into it this week, including the FBI raid on Trump’s lawyer Michael Cohen, reports that a Trump Tower doorman was paid hush money to squelch a rumor about Trump fathering a child out of wedlock, rumors of Rod Rosenstein’s imminent firing, and the pardoning of Bush-era criminal Scooter Libby.

But the big topic is the Comey book, which is already driving Trump crazy. The Trump governance crisis is at an all -time high. What happens next? That’s the topic of today’s pod. (And at the end we also talk about Paul Ryan’s announcement that he’s not running for re-election, and we discuss what it means for the 2018 elections.)

Listen to a free 12-minute sample below or via this link.

And here’s the entire 72-minute episode for premium subscribers ($5/month or greater):

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Laura Ingraham boycott, Sinclair bias, and monopoly media http://americablog.com/2018/04/laura-ingraham-boycott-sinclair-bias-and-monopoly-media.html http://americablog.com/2018/04/laura-ingraham-boycott-sinclair-bias-and-monopoly-media.html#respond Wed, 04 Apr 2018 20:41:34 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144277 In our latest podcast episode, Cliff and I discuss the impact of monopoly media on America, from Sinclair Broadcast Group forcing its local anchors to read a partisan pro-Trump script about “fake news,” to the wildly-successful boycott of Fox News’ Laura Ingraham and the danger that Fox poses as a propaganda organ of one political […]

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In our latest podcast episode, Cliff and I discuss the impact of monopoly media on America, from Sinclair Broadcast Group forcing its local anchors to read a partisan pro-Trump script about “fake news,” to the wildly-successful boycott of Fox News’ Laura Ingraham and the danger that Fox poses as a propaganda organ of one political party.

We also discuss Trump’s tragic photo shoot at the White House Easter Egg hunt, in which Melania and the Easter Bunny appear to be unwilling hostages, the latest election news (still great for Democrats), and the NRA’s weird new ad campaign about lemons and crying.

Please subscribe to the UnPresidented Podcast on iTunes (www.UnPresidentedPodcast.com) and leave us a rating & review. And access our premium shows by becoming a patron here on Patreon: www.patreon.com/UnPresidentedPodcast

Credit: Warner Bros. for West Wing clip, and Deadspin for Sinclair clip.

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Facebook knows what doctors I go to http://americablog.com/2018/03/facebook-knows-what-doctors-i-go-to.html http://americablog.com/2018/03/facebook-knows-what-doctors-i-go-to.html#respond Fri, 23 Mar 2018 16:06:22 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144266 With all the news this week about how Facebook basically helped Donald Trump and the Russians steal our election, I decided to download my own Facebook data and see what Facebook has on me. It was a disturbing experience. You can download the data easily enough. Follow these instructions, and you should receive the data […]

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With all the news this week about how Facebook basically helped Donald Trump and the Russians steal our election, I decided to download my own Facebook data and see what Facebook has on me.

It was a disturbing experience.

You can download the data easily enough. Follow these instructions, and you should receive the data in a half hour or so.

You’ll receive a zip file that you can open, and then click into the folder with your name on it, and you’ll find something like the following:

Click on index.htm, and it should open a Web page that will be your starting point to explore what information Facebook has on you. Then just click the links on the left side of the page.

Here’s a list of what they had on me:

1. Profile.

That’s simple enough. And expected. Facebook has everything I’ve written about myself in my profile.

2. Contact info.

This one was rather disturbing. Facebook has the names and phone numbers of everyone in my iphone. That includes friend, dates, and doctors. I don’t want Facebook to have a list of my doctors, so that someone can easily ever-engineer what’s going on with my health. How did Facebook get this information? I had synced my iphone with my Facebook page, in order to fill in the information in my address book. I had no idea I was literally handing my entire address to Facebook for keeps.

Wait a minute, why does Facebook have my cell phone? And they’re giving it to advertisers?!

3. Timeline.

Facebook has every single thing you’ve ever written on your timeline. While that’s expected, it’s also really creepy looking back at things you wrote in 2008, and realizing someone has a file of everything.

4. Photos.

Yep, they kept every photo you’ve ever published.

5. Videos.

Ditto

6. Friends.

A list of all of your Facebook friends.

7. Messages.

Okay, this one creeped me out. Facebook has a copy of every message you ever sent to anyone on Facebook. And for all I know, they’re sharing it with the highest bidder. Did you ever discuss your health with anyone on Facebook? Ever discuss sex? Ever discuss any confidential work issues? Every discuss your health? Ever discuss anything personal and confidential that you don’t want to sold to the highest bidder?

Okay, these are Facebook chat discussions. Wow. They’ve kept every chat you’ve ever had, gone back a decade or more. Wouldn’t law enforcement, a divorcing spouse, or just someone suing you love to have access to that.

8. Pokes, events.

9. Security.

There’s a lot of weird geeky stuff here, such as capturing IP addresses I’ve used, and locations I’ve been at when using them.

10. Ads.

This one is fun. It shows a list of every advertiser who nows have my contact info. Here’s my list:

Advertisers with your contact info
RCG Global Services, Inc.
Safir Consulting
KILOUTOU
InterimWorX B.V.
SFR
Zicht Adviseurs
AFD.Tech
Icebreaking Recruitment
Skillink cabinet de recrutement digital
Kele, Inc.
Infracom
SABO AB
UGI Energy Services
Spotify
KONE Sverige
ISAGRI
WFM People Nederland
Sally Beauty
Helder Recruitment
TeamQ14
Talent Enterprise bv
Monster
Jobba hos Keolis Sverige
American Family Insurance-Careers
FRIS
Alito People
Aprico Consultants
Georgia Department of Revenue
SYKES USA
Parkwood International
CT Imago
People First (Recruitment) Ltd
ASI Corp.
Concept Services
Independer.nl
Quantore
Bleiken
Interplace, Inc.
Best Buy
Folksam
DIVERSANT
MonsterTest
AMatch Detachering
Ipro Tech
Royal United Mortgage LLC NMLS #13390
CGI Nederland
Hayward Miller Ltd
DAF Sverige
Heritage Bank
Target
kWh People
Saber Healthcare Group
Dfind it
TJFACT – Totally Joined for Achieving Collaborative Techniques
American Express
Städtische Werke AG, Naturstrom und Naturgas vom Stadtwerk aus Kassel
Stars Behavioral Health Group
Jongeneel
Coolworld Rentals
Equipment Depot
Flight Centre Canada
Prevas AB
Paslode Spit UK
Wallace Hind Selection LLP
MCA Ingénierie
State Farm
Spirit Hosting & Promotions
Parsons Corporation
OBH Nordica Sverige
Brandwise Group
FutureYou
Jobforward
DLT Solutions
Axecibles
CallTower
Richards Building Supply
Eaton
ISS Sverige
Evoqua Water Technologies
Denovo Amsterdam
Kuribay
De Koning Uitzendbureau
Silgan Containers
MGEN
LKQ Corporation
Anticimex
Total Motion Vehicle Management
IHerb Careers
Physicians Mutual
Career Movement
Spacelabs Healthcare
Infotel
Condesign AB
Medical Specialties Distributors, LLC (MSD)
Nigel Wright Group
Offiss
Logent
ISSY Personal och Rekrytering
Hunter Engineering Company Corporate
Menasha Corporation
Enterprise Rent-A-Car Careers
Hunteo
Johnson Health Tech North America
Espace Aubade
Nespresso
Bojangles’
Nuon Sales Force
ARAG
Wise F&I LLC
Ntelicor
RCN
Ige+xao Group
Financial Search Group
Uber
Elis
Long Beach Transit
Maxflex BV
INDUS Technology-Jobs
WFA Staffing Group
Etappe Uitzendbureau
Groupe DFM
Waste Management
Men’s Wearhouse
Hallo Franchise
CareerBoutique
Systematix
Het Kadaster
CGI UK Careers
HBS Consulting
Careers at Dell
The HT Group
Careers at Blue Lynx
HHT Careers
Menü-Manufaktur Hofmann
Silicon Refractory Anchoring Solutions
Michael Page – USA
Enterprise Rent-A-Car Netherlands
Booz Allen Hamilton
Consumer Hub Ltd
CLS Services
Finders Arbeidsmarktcommunicatie
Atos France
Keeling Company
Virtusa
Trend People
LEF Recruitment
Hypertherm Careers and Jobs
Evonik
Pipestock Ltd
eBay
Volvo Cars
CS Communication & Systèmes
Ecoburotic
UBN Uitzendbureau
Excent Tandtechniek
Prestige Staffing
CGT Caterpillar
Quicken Loans Careers
ImpressiveGreenApple
Aegistech Inc.
Sesmento Selectiekantoor
Inrego AB
VDL Bus & Coach Sweden AB
JobHat.com
Resource Staffing
P & I – Power & Installation
Synopsys Careers
Corinium Language Associates
Säljpoolen i Sverige AB
Aquasud
Uber Eats
L.A. BioMed
Heisterkamp Groep
BDO USA, LLP
HUMAN-CAPiTAL
TEFL Heaven – Teach English Abroad
02dege
Coca-Cola European Partners Sverige
Jobba på trafikförvaltningen SLL
Renewi NL Zuid
comScore, Inc.

11. Applications.

Simply a list of any applications I’ve linked to Facebook.

I’m pretty creeped out now, and I have no idea how to get rid of this data. Even deleting Facebook entirely, which I can’t do because of my work, there’s no guarantee it will delete your data (I’ll bet it doesn’t). How do I unlink my phone? And it doesn’t matter anyway, Facebook already has my entire address book and all my doctors and everyone else.

This is far creepier than I expected.

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March for Our Lives, Saturday March 24, 2018 http://americablog.com/2018/03/march-for-our-lives-saturday-march-24-2018.html http://americablog.com/2018/03/march-for-our-lives-saturday-march-24-2018.html#respond Wed, 21 Mar 2018 15:38:02 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144260 Cliff and I had the pleasure and honor of interviewing leading gun control advocate Shannon Watts, the head of Moms Demand Action, about the upcoming March for Our Lives anti-gun rally (taking place this Saturday, March 23, in communities across America), and more generally the state of the gun control movement. Shannon is brilliant, amazing […]

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Cliff and I had the pleasure and honor of interviewing leading gun control advocate Shannon Watts, the head of Moms Demand Action, about the upcoming March for Our Lives anti-gun rally (taking place this Saturday, March 23, in communities across America), and more generally the state of the gun control movement.

Shannon is brilliant, amazing and inspiring. One of the things I most enjoyed about talking to Shannon is her positivity. I never fully appreciated how many successes the gun safety/gun control movement has had in the past several years, and Shannon set me straight. It’s a great and hopeful interview. I think you’ll really enjoy it, and learn a few things about gun politics along the way.

In addition to specific topical issues like reciprocity, concealed carry, and whether the NRA is really 10 feet tall (spoiler alert: Shannon says they’re not), we also talk a good deal about the upcoming March for Our Lives, taking place around the US on Saturday, March 24th.

Here’s a 15-minute snippet of the podcast interview:

Watch the entire hour-long interview with Shannon Watts here with a $5/month or more subscription.

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Dan Savage on sex & politics (podcast) http://americablog.com/2018/03/dan-savage-sex-politics-podcast.html http://americablog.com/2018/03/dan-savage-sex-politics-podcast.html#respond Thu, 08 Mar 2018 15:35:40 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144217 Advice columnist and LGBT advocate Dan Savage joins us for a wide-ranging conversation about politics, sex, and everything in between. This episode is definitely not-safe-for-work. We talk to Dan about conservative dating advice, Donald Trump, Dan’s fear of the Titanic, the gun debate, the Mueller Trump-Russia probe, chariot racing (don’t ask), Oscar pervertibles (don’t ask), […]

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Advice columnist and LGBT advocate Dan Savage joins us for a wide-ranging conversation about politics, sex, and everything in between.

This episode is definitely not-safe-for-work.

We talk to Dan about conservative dating advice, Donald Trump, Dan’s fear of the Titanic, the gun debate, the Mueller Trump-Russia probe, chariot racing (don’t ask), Oscar pervertibles (don’t ask), monogamy, kink, and the intersection of sex and politics.

And we’re proud to announce that we’re joining Dan in a new project announced during the podcast: OnlyMerrick.com, a new effort to take back the Supreme Court seat the Republican stole from Merrick Garland.

It was a hilarious, and sometimes-serious, hour that we think you’ll really enjoy. We know we did. You can listen below:

Please subscribe to the UnPresidented Podcast on iTunes (www.UnPresidentedPodcast.com) and leave us a rating & review. And access our premium shows by becoming a patron

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Sexism at the Oscars, and bigotry in the Women’s March http://americablog.com/2018/03/sexism-oscars-bigotry-womens-march.html http://americablog.com/2018/03/sexism-oscars-bigotry-womens-march.html#respond Tue, 06 Mar 2018 14:51:06 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144206 Women are a big topic of today’s podcast, with a discussion of sexism in Hollywood; and then a look at the controversy swirling around the Women’s March and its odd affinity for racist anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan. In the second half of the show, Cliff and I have a good laugh over the news that former […]

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Women are a big topic of today’s podcast, with a discussion of sexism in Hollywood; and then a look at the controversy swirling around the Women’s March and its odd affinity for racist anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan.

In the second half of the show, Cliff and I have a good laugh over the news that former Trump campaign staffer Sam Nunberg says he’s going to refuse to respond to FBI Special Counsel Mueller’s subpoena; and we conclude with some really good news about the growing Democratic wave in the 2018 election.

You can listen to this episode below.

Please subscribe to the UnPresidented Podcast on iTunes (www.UnPresidentedPodcast.com) and leave us a rating & review. And access our premium shows by becoming a patron here on Patreon: www.patreon.com/UnPresidentedPodcast

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It’s time for a somber national discussion about [INSERT LATEST MASS SHOOTING HERE] http://americablog.com/2018/02/time-somber-national-discussion-insert-latest-mass-shooting.html http://americablog.com/2018/02/time-somber-national-discussion-insert-latest-mass-shooting.html#comments Wed, 14 Feb 2018 23:00:58 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=143934 This story, first published years ago, was inspired by some American mass-shooting long-forgotten. Sadly, we are forced to republish it on a regular basis. It’s time to have a somber national discussion about the [insert shooting tragedy here] tragedy. Before we get started, let’s go over a few basic ground rules. 1. In the wake of […]

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This story, first published years ago, was inspired by some American mass-shooting long-forgotten. Sadly, we are forced to republish it on a regular basis.

It’s time to have a somber national discussion about the [insert shooting tragedy here] tragedy.

Before we get started, let’s go over a few basic ground rules.

1. In the wake of the __________ tragedy, it’s time for us all to come together as a nation and not assign blame. This is not the time, for example, to talk about how it’s easier to purchase a gun in America than it is to vote (or buy French cheese). I fact-checked the graphic below, it’s for real:

GUNS-CHEESE

And I quote White House spokesman Jary Carney, speaking about the murder at Sandy Hook school in Newtown, Connecticut of at least 18 young children:

“I’m sure [there] will be rather a day for discussion of the usual Washington policy debates,but I don’t think today is that day,” Carney said.

Fortunately, the President’s subsequent statement was better.

2. And we won’t tolerate any second guessing of the Second Amendment right to carry assault weapons, or questions about how the Framers could have possibly envisaged an assault rifle over 200 years ago, or why a “hunter” needs six thousand rounds of ammunition, or kevlar, or smoke grenades to kill a pheasant.

Open Carry gun owner at JC Penney store in Utah

Open -carry gun owner at JC Penney store in Utah. What could possibly go wrong?

3. While the shooter may have been inspired by political fliers showing the victim in cross hairs, or may have come unhinged by inflammatory rhetoric about how said victim was coming for the shooter’s guns, discussing such motivation at this sensitive moment would be completely inappropriate. Not to mention, disrespectful to the __________ victims.

Sarah Palin showed US Rep. Gabby Giffords' district in crosshairs shortly before Giffords was shot in the head and nearly killed in an assassination attempt.

Sarah Palin showed US Rep. Gabby Giffords’ district in crosshairs shortly before Giffords was shot in the head and nearly killed in an assassination attempt.

4. If the tragedy involved someone flying a plane into a government building, or for that matter blowing up a government building, now is not the time to discuss people like Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity (no names, please), or Republicans generally (no political parties, please), incessantly trying to convince their audience that the occupant of the White House, or any government official, agency, or entire branch of government is evil and/or “un-American” and/or out to get them or our country or our freedom.

drudge-hitler-obama-stalin-578x500

5. And definitely don’t mention the Republican party’s frequent claim and/or insinuation, including suggestions from the GOP candidate himself, Mitt Romney, that the sitting Democratic President is a socialist, which in American parlance actually means “communist,” which actually means “Soviet,” which was America’s deadliest enemy out for our utter destruction.

Sure, it would be entirely understandable why someone would take up arms against a Soviet takeover of the United States, but a Democrat said something mean once about a Republican’s dog, or something, so aren’t both parties really to blame, thus making the charge moot?

tea party

Tea Party rally. The Islamic symbol at the bottom right of the poster is a nice touch. Ira Bostic / Shutterstock.com

6. Never, ever mention the NRA.  Sure, they’ve proven themselves, time and again, incapable of passing laws that effectively keep guns out of the hands of crazy mass murderers, but that’s no reason to blame them for the _______ tragedy because it’s just too early to cast blame on anyone other than the shooter, who was obviously crazy, and thus this month’s anomaly.

Now, let’s discuss for a moment the race of the shooter and the race of the victims.

7. If the ______________ tragedy involved angry white men opening fire on brown people of faith, this is definitely not the time to replay clips of bombastic commentators and politicians getting white men in places like Kansas whipped into a frenzy over Manhattan’s zoning criteria for non-Christian houses of worship.

8. But feel free to discuss if all brown people, and thus the shooter, or his victims, were Muslims – sorry, I meant to say “radical Islamists.”  And even if neither was a Muslim, make sure you discuss that point incessantly – Muslim, Muslim, Muslim, Muslim – so as to eventually sow suspicion in the public’s mind as to whether there really is a Muslim angle to this story.

9. Speaking of which, this is not the time to discuss the more general fear mongering around words like “Muslim,” including the ongoing, successful, attempt by Republicans to convince their base that our dark-skinned President is one.

Okay, I think we’re ready now to discuss the ______________ tragedy.

First off: It is entirely acceptable for a Republican to opine that the tragedy could have been averted had the victims all been armed (please disregard previous tragedies where armed police officers, or members of the military, were themselves injured by the shooter).

Second: Poignant, but ultimately meaningless, gestures such as lighting tragedy candles at nighttime vigils, and posting anti-gun petitions on Change.org, are to be encouraged.

Finally: Clutch your pearls, and all together now, ask the purely rhetorical question: “How could this happen?”

Forty-eight hours after the shooting, return to talking about the Olympics and the latest Kardashian wedding until the next shooting occurs, then refer to point 1 above.

PS: If the victims of the ___________tragedy were black, ignore the above restrictions and take up a collection for the shooter’s defense fund.

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So George Papadopoulos was just some drunk. Right. http://americablog.com/2018/02/o-george-papadopoulos-just-drunk-right.html http://americablog.com/2018/02/o-george-papadopoulos-just-drunk-right.html#respond Thu, 08 Feb 2018 16:30:56 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144179 The aftermath of the Nunes Memo is the topic of today’s UnPresidented Podcast (Nunes now claims that Papadopoulos was just some drunk who never even met Trump), with satellite discussions about what a mess Mike Huckabee is, Donald Trump’s mistaken notion that he can order a new special counsel to investigate the FBI and DOJ, […]

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The aftermath of the Nunes Memo is the topic of today’s UnPresidented Podcast (Nunes now claims that Papadopoulos was just some drunk who never even met Trump), with satellite discussions about what a mess Mike Huckabee is, Donald Trump’s mistaken notion that he can order a new special counsel to investigate the FBI and DOJ, how Trump has hopefully put an end to lefty purity politics, and the impending market crash that happened live as we were broadcasting.

You can listen to this episode below (a podcast is basically a radio show that you can listen to online).

Please subscribe to the UnPresidented Podcast on iTunes (www.UnPresidentedPodcast.com) and leave us a rating & review. And access our premium shows by becoming a patron here on Patreon: www.patreon.com/UnPresidentedPodcast

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The State of the Union is stormy http://americablog.com/2018/02/state-union-stormy.html http://americablog.com/2018/02/state-union-stormy.html#comments Thu, 01 Feb 2018 15:38:15 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144136 Trump’s first State of the Union was a bit of a dud. The real news today is the latest on the Nunes memo controversy (we think Nunes should be thrown in jail), and Trump’s increasing efforts to derail the Mueller investigation. Cliff and I discuss all that at length in today’s special SOTU episode. (Trigger […]

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Trump’s first State of the Union was a bit of a dud. The real news today is the latest on the Nunes memo controversy (we think Nunes should be thrown in jail), and Trump’s increasing efforts to derail the Mueller investigation.

Cliff and I discuss all that at length in today’s special SOTU episode. (Trigger warning: John gets a little angry — almost as angry as Melania was last night at the SOTU.) You can listen to this podcast below, and subscribe to our premium episodes (and support my work) here.

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Shutdown victory or defeat? http://americablog.com/2018/01/shutdown-victory-defeat.html http://americablog.com/2018/01/shutdown-victory-defeat.html#comments Thu, 25 Jan 2018 15:37:50 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144121 The government shutdown is over, but did the Democrats win or lose by agreeing to reopen the government for the next three weeks in exchange for the GOP funding the CHIP children’s health insurance program and promising to hold a DACA vote? That’s our big topic in today’s episode. We also look at the successful […]

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The government shutdown is over, but did the Democrats win or lose by agreeing to reopen the government for the next three weeks in exchange for the GOP funding the CHIP children’s health insurance program and promising to hold a DACA vote? That’s our big topic in today’s episode.

We also look at the successful Women’s March this past weekend, and GOP Rep. Devin Nunes’ ongoing effort to be a bigger traitor to the country than the Rosenbergs.

Please subscribe to the UnPresidented Podcast on iTunes (www.UnPresidentedPodcast.com) and leave us a rating & review. And access our premium shows by becoming a patron here on Patreon: www.patreon.com/UnPresidentedPodcast

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Little lust on the prairie http://americablog.com/2018/01/little-lust-prairie.html http://americablog.com/2018/01/little-lust-prairie.html#respond Thu, 25 Jan 2018 15:34:49 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144118 It’s been a busy week, from the imminent government shutdown to allegations that Donald Trump paid an adult film star named Stormy Daniels $130,000 hush money just before the 2016 election. In today’s premium episode, Cliff Schecter and John Aravosis discuss both of those stories, along with the news that the FBI is looking into […]

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It’s been a busy week, from the imminent government shutdown to allegations that Donald Trump paid an adult film star named Stormy Daniels $130,000 hush money just before the 2016 election.

In today’s premium episode, Cliff Schecter and John Aravosis discuss both of those stories, along with the news that the FBI is looking into whether the Russians funneled money through the NRA to illegally influence the election, and the miracle that Donald Trump allegedly grew an inch in the last year at age 71. (Spoiler alert: He’s lying.)

Full episode here

Please subscribe to the UnPresidented Podcast on iTunes (www.UnPresidentedPodcast.com) and leave us a review. Find out more about us, and support the show by subscribing to our premium episodes on Patreon: www.patreon.com/UnPresidentedPodcast

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Sh*tholeCongress & Trump’s porn collection http://americablog.com/2018/01/shtholecongress-trumps-porn-collection.html http://americablog.com/2018/01/shtholecongress-trumps-porn-collection.html#comments Tue, 16 Jan 2018 15:22:22 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144112 In today’s podcast, Cliff and I discuss the GOP Congress’ undying need to defend Donald Trump at all costs (the latest example being their determination to lie for Trump about Sh*tholeGate); a new report that Trump allegedly paid a porn star $130,000 to keep her quiet right before the election; and the importance of the […]

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In today’s podcast, Cliff and I discuss the GOP Congress’ undying need to defend Donald Trump at all costs (the latest example being their determination to lie for Trump about Sh*tholeGate); a new report that Trump allegedly paid a porn star $130,000 to keep her quiet right before the election; and the importance of the recent civil defense snafu in Hawaii in an age in which Trump has North Korea, and everyone else, on pins and needles.

As always, you can access all of our premium podcast episodes, and support my work, with a minimum $5/month subscription to the UnPresidented Podcast. You can subscribe here, thanks!

(Stormy Daniels image attribution: © Glenn Francis, PacificProDigital.com)

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2017 Year in Review http://americablog.com/2018/01/2017-year-review.html http://americablog.com/2018/01/2017-year-review.html#comments Wed, 03 Jan 2018 16:22:30 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144094 I’m not such a New Years fan. I often find the demarcation between the years to be somewhat artificial. But this year has been so momentous, with Trump’s rise to power, that it’s worth taking stock of where we are and how far we’ve come. At the beginning of the year I was pretty despondent, […]

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I’m not such a New Years fan. I often find the demarcation between the years to be somewhat artificial. But this year has been so momentous, with Trump’s rise to power, that it’s worth taking stock of where we are and how far we’ve come. At the beginning of the year I was pretty despondent, now I’m rather hopeful. And here’s why.

DEMS WILL TAKE BACK THE HOUSE IN NOVEMBER

I really believe Democrats are going to take back the US House in November 2018. We also have a good shot at taking back the Senate. Now, that’s looking at the numbers, and Democratic momentum, today. That can all change in a year. But, RIGHT NOW we are in a great position to take back the House especially, and that’s something we didn’t necessarily anticipate a year ago.

Democrats, progressives, assorted folks on the left are ticked, and motivated. Alabama, and Virginia before it, showed that Democratic voters are turning out, while GOP voters are not. Not only is the momentum on our side, the enthusiasm is as well. While many in the media want you to continue to be worried about Trump’s “base,” the real numbers show that even Trump’s base is losing energy. In Alabama, the Democratic base — black women and young people in particular — turned out in record numbers for an off-year election. On the GOP side, the numbers were anemic. I also think of a recent poll showing that Trump’s support is plummeting among Fox News viewers — there is no base any baser than that.

So all of Trump’s excesses are catching up with him. Now, we can’t get haughty about it. In 2016, we thought that Trump was so OBVIOUSLY unfit for office that he could never win, and he did. So the point is not to count our chickens before they hatch, but rather, to recognize that victory is within our grasp — and that’s something a lot of us didn’t think when 2017 started.

TRUMP-RUSSIA IS GOING TO HEAT UP

Having said that, we’ve still got challenges (and defeats) ahead of us. One need look no further than the recent tax bill that repealed the individual mandate (though not until 2019), and so screwed up the tax system that no one knows whether they’re even getting a tax cut at all (but we do know that Trump just gutted a huge property tax and state income tax deduction a number of us in the middle class used). But there’s hope. First, the Trump-Russia investigation…

Trump is in deep water on this one. The recent NYT story was a game-changer — it showed that Trump senior foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos was the person who got the entire FBI investigation rolling, rather than, as the GOP claims, it being due to the Steele (pee-pee tape) dossier. As the NYT reported, Papadopoulos was informed in late April, 2016 that the Russians had stolen “thousands” of Hillary Clinton’s email. Rather than reporting this to the FBI, Papadopoulos bragged about it over drinks with a senior employee of the Australian Embassy in London. The Australian reported it to his bosses, who then told the Americans, who then launched an FBI investigation of the Trump campaign’s growing, and troubling, secret contacts with Russian intelligence.

So the entire Trump-Russia investigation was started by Trump’s own campaign staff.

And it’s worse than that. Are we really to believe that Papadopoulos bragged about what he knew to an Australian diplomat but didn’t brag about it to his own bosses on the Trump campaign? Not credible. So who on Team Trump knew, and why didn’t anyone call the FBI? And why did Trump and his campaign keep claiming publicly that: A) They had no contact with the Russians; and B) The Russians weren’t responsible for hacking Hillary et. al.’s emails, when Trump’s campaign already knew it was true because Russian intermediaries told them, and perhaps even offered them the emails?

There is a whole lot of lying going on here, a whole lot of cover up, and a whole lot of conspiracy. Innocent people don’t act like this. They don’t secretly meet with the Russians, they don’t NOT tell the FBI when they find out about foreign espionage, and they don’t then lie about it in an effort to cover up the crimes of a foreign enemy of the United States. Also, real Americans don’t conspire with a foreign power to undermine our democratic elections. Only traitors do that.

Unless, they were involved.

WHY TAKING BACK THE HOUSE CHANGES EVERYTHING

So, we keep an eye on the Russia probe; but the prize this year is Congress. We have to take back the House, and/or Senate, next November. If we do, everything changes. First off, when that happens, Devin Nunes’ effort to undermine the Mueller probe ends immediately. Second, Democrats in the House will have subpoena power to investigate all the scandalds, from Russian election intererence to all the Trump corruption, including Trump’s efforts to use the FBI and Dept of Justice to investigate his political opponents. There’s also the small fact that Trump’s legislative agenda is dead in the water if the Democrats take back either house of Congress. I cannot emphasize enough how important this coming election will be.

For that reason, I’m devoting a lot of time this year to fundraising for Democratic congressional candidates. We did amazing work together helping Doug Jones beat accused-child-molester Roy Moore in Alabama. And if we can win in Alabama, we can win almost anywhere.

WON’T YOU PLEASE SUPPORT MY WORK THIS YEAR?

So, that’s my year in review, in a nutshell. As many of you know, I moved back to DC this year from New York City so that I could redouble my efforts to take on, and down, Donald Trump. I’ve formed an LLC, AMERICAblog Action, to help with those efforts, and have been growing my email action list with the express purpose of turning the Congress blue in November. If you can support my efforts with a generous donation, I would very much appreciate it.

Please support my work with a $25 donation.

Also, our new podcast, the UnPresidented Podcast, is doing really well in just these few short months since we launched. We’re asking folks to subscribe for a minimum $5/month donation, but you can still check out our free episodes (which are more or less every other episode). Here’s a particularly good snippet from our most recent episode about Trump’s disastrous recent interview with the NYT, in which he claimed nearly two dozen times that he didn’t collude with Russia.

If you like that snippet, you can hear the entire episode here for a $5/month premium subscription. I really want to build the podcast this year, and we have some big-name guests coming soon, so please do subscribe and help support progressive media.

Stay strong. I really think we’ve turned the tide, and 2018 is going to be a much better year than we expected.

Thanks, JOHN

PS For those who read this far, check out my interview, from 2008, with Star Wars goddess Carrie Fisher. It’s only 5 minutes long, and on video, and it’s pretty funny. She was an amazing lady.

And join our email action list to receive content like this.

You can listen to the free snippet here:

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Trump’s hilarious denial of collusion with Russia http://americablog.com/2018/01/trumps-hilarious-denial-collusion-russia.html http://americablog.com/2018/01/trumps-hilarious-denial-collusion-russia.html#comments Tue, 02 Jan 2018 17:16:28 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144091 Trump’s disastrous New York Times interview is the topic of our latest UnPresidented Podcast episode, in part because the NYT got a lot of heat for — some say — letting Trump get away with a lot of lies. But also because Trump was so unhinged, even for him, that it’s a fascinating, and scary, […]

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Trump’s disastrous New York Times interview is the topic of our latest UnPresidented Podcast episode, in part because the NYT got a lot of heat for — some say — letting Trump get away with a lot of lies.

But also because Trump was so unhinged, even for him, that it’s a fascinating, and scary, way to end the year with a look deep into the psyche of a madman.

A lot of the interview, interestingly, dealt with Russia, and Trump’s incessant denials of collusion (which is what this clip is devoted to). The man is clearly freaked out about the Russia probe, and he also hasn’t gotten over the election yet. Enjoy.

You can hear a funny snippet below, and the entire episode here with a $5/month subscription.

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Trump claims to have most effective administration since Truman. It’s another huge lie. http://americablog.com/2017/12/trump-claims-effective-administration-since-truman-another-huge-lie.html http://americablog.com/2017/12/trump-claims-effective-administration-since-truman-another-huge-lie.html#comments Thu, 28 Dec 2017 18:06:48 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144084 Donald Trump yesterday claimed that he has had the most effective first-year of any president since Truman, who held the earlier record (Trump claimed) — but now, Trump has even beat Truman! Except it was all a lie. Trump didn’t beat Truman. Truman didn’t hold the record — Kennedy did. And in fact, Trump has […]

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Donald Trump yesterday claimed that he has had the most effective first-year of any president since Truman, who held the earlier record (Trump claimed) — but now, Trump has even beat Truman!

Except it was all a lie.

Trump didn’t beat Truman. Truman didn’t hold the record — Kennedy did. And in fact, Trump has had the least effective first-year of any president, including Truman.

CNN had a great chart this morning, listing the number of bills signed in each president’s first year. Trump fared the worst:

trump first year legislative recorda

All of this might be funny if it weren’t so dangerous. The man is a pathological liar, whose words mean nothing. That’s a dangerous trait for a president of the United States, whose words can start wars. But just as troubling is the fact that Trump seems not-all-there in the head. It’s difficult to imagine someone so willing to lie so boldly about a fact that’s easily checked. Sane people tend not to do such things. Trump, on the other hand, simply doesn’t care.

And to lie with such specificity — claiming falsely that Truman held the record before him. It’s creepy and troubling.

Had this been any other administration, and in particular a Democratic administration, there would be never-ending challenges to the White House about the president’s propensity for lying. Hillary was pilloried for getting wrong some of the details of her many foreign trips; as was Al Gore for misstating parts of his record. Trump lies with every breath, and we all roll our eyes with a Reaganesque “there he goes again.”

Here’s CNN’s quick report on it, with video of Trump’s claim:

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Star Wars’ Carrie Fisher, my interview http://americablog.com/2017/12/star-wars-carrie-fisher-interview.html http://americablog.com/2017/12/star-wars-carrie-fisher-interview.html#comments Tue, 26 Dec 2017 18:58:54 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144075 I had the joy of interviewing Star Wars star Carrie Fisher (aka Princess/General Leia) who passed away unexpectedly last Christmas. It was right before the 2008 elections, and Fisher one-woman show (Wishful Drinking) was traveling through DC, and a reader of my blog was able to snag us tickets, and even better, an interview back […]

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I had the joy of interviewing Star Wars star Carrie Fisher (aka Princess/General Leia) who passed away unexpectedly last Christmas. It was right before the 2008 elections, and Fisher one-woman show (Wishful Drinking) was traveling through DC, and a reader of my blog was able to snag us tickets, and even better, an interview back stage before the show!

I never laughed so hard in all my life. Carrie is hilarious, and brilliant, and insane.

My then-blogging-partner-in-crime Joe Sudbay and I met Carrie at her car in the parking lot behind DC’s Lincoln Theater. Carrie said hi, then threw glitter dust all over the both of us. We were covered in the stuff. She acted like it was totally normal. That was Carrie.

So we went with her to her dressing room, and talked for like 20 minutes before the actual on-tape interview. Oh how I wish I had taped that part. Carrie was brilliant, and quite serious, when talking about politics. She almost seemed as if she was being extra-careful NOT to be frivolous in discussing the upcoming 2018 election.

But she was hysterical in the pre-game before we taped, talking about the time she dated then- Senator Chris Dodd, and he took her to the Kennedy compound in Massachusetts for the weekend, and the Kennedy’s ridiculed her mercilessly (referring her to a floozy, in essence). Well, anyone who’s met Carrie knows that you take her on at your own peril. In the middle of a church, after one Kennedy had made one floozy joke too far, she responded, loudly, with a joke about Chappaquiddick.

Oh my god, I said, what did they do? She responded, the entire room erupted into laughter.

The interview itself, in the video below, was more serious. Carrie began by smearing more glitter on Joe’s face (photo to the right). Two parts, however, were lighter, so to speak. In one, Carrie talks about President George W. Bush’s little-known superpower (he can fart on command), and then she went off on Sarah Palin, calling her the c-word. I’m pretty sure Carrie had made the same comment before the show, and we had told her that she can’t say that on tape, especially only six weeks or so before the election — we didn’t want to divert attention from all the bad press Palin was getting. But Carrie being Carrie, she said it anyway. (I did bleep it in the video I posted on YouTube at the time, but still have the original, and will post it when I get back to DC where my copy resides.)

I’d have loved to have had her on our UnPresidented Podcast. What a gem. Here’s my 2008 interview:

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Tell Congress to Hold Trump Accountable for Sexual Assault http://americablog.com/2017/12/tell-congress-hold-trump-accountable-sexual-assault.html http://americablog.com/2017/12/tell-congress-hold-trump-accountable-sexual-assault.html#comments Mon, 11 Dec 2017 18:40:47 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144065 On the same day that women are demanding justice for Donald Trump’s serial sexual assault, Senate Democrats are providing Trump cover. Add your name: Demand that Democrats in Congress hold Donald Trump accountable for his already-confessed serial sexual assault. In the past 24 hours, two Senate Democrats, Chris Coons and Ben Cardin, suggested that it […]

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On the same day that women are demanding justice for Donald Trump’s serial sexual assault, Senate Democrats are providing Trump cover.

Add your name: Demand that Democrats in Congress hold Donald Trump accountable for his already-confessed serial sexual assault.

In the past 24 hours, two Senate Democrats, Chris Coons and Ben Cardin, suggested that it wasn’t their job to hold Donald Trump accountable for sexual assault. The Democrats claimed that Congress has no mechanism to investigate Trump’s sexual assault (um, hearings anyone?), and, incredibly, they repeated an absurd Donald Trump White House talking point that the election last year exonerated Trump from such charges. (Here’s video of Coons.) Sarah Huckabee Sanders gave the exact same excuse today!

That’s preposterous. First, Hillary Clinton won the election last year — at least in terms of the popular vote. It’s absurd on its face to suggest that people voted in favor of sexual assault; but it’s equally false to make the claim when 3 million more people voted for Hillary. If anything, “the people” spoke AGAINST Trump.

The fact that two Democratic Senators made the exact same statement within a day of each other means they are repeating official Senate Democrat talking points. And that’s outrageous.

America is finally waking up to the horrors of sexual harassment and sexual assault. Democratic Senators went so far as to force Senator Al Franken to resign over such accusations. But when it comes to Donald Trump, we’re supposed to give him a pass?

I don’t think so.

Sign the petition, below or via this link, demand that Congressional Democrats hold Donald Trump as accountable as they do their own congressional colleagues.

 

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Trump’s speech suddenly slurs during major Jerusalem statement http://americablog.com/2017/12/trumps-speech-suddenly-slurs-major-jerusalem-statement.html http://americablog.com/2017/12/trumps-speech-suddenly-slurs-major-jerusalem-statement.html#comments Thu, 07 Dec 2017 01:10:54 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144050 During his statement today about his decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, Donald Trump’s speech suddenly slurred in the last minute of his address. I’ve compiled a video comparing the first 30 seconds of Trump’s Jerusalem statement with the final 30 seconds or so. You’ll note that in the first few minutes, […]

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During his statement today about his decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, Donald Trump’s speech suddenly slurred in the last minute of his address.

I’ve compiled a video comparing the first 30 seconds of Trump’s Jerusalem statement with the final 30 seconds or so. You’ll note that in the first few minutes, Trump is articulate and pronounces the letter “s” correction. At the end of the speech, Trump is slurring his words, can no longer pronounce the letter “s” — it comes across as “sh” — and then in closing the address, Trump even mispronounces the word “United States” as “United Shates.”

Some have wondered if Trump has dentures, others have noted that a sudden onset of slurred speech can be indicative of a stroke, or even a side effect of medication. (Trump’s sniffling and heavy breathing was back in this speech as well as well.) But Trump claims he’s perfectly healthy, and not on any medication other than statins. And he’s never admitted to wearing dentures.

Then what happened?

Below is my video comparing the beginning and the end of the Jerusalem statement, then a look at his signature today, compared to his signing of earlier executive orders:

Now have a look at Trump’s signature today, versus earlier signatures.

Here’s today’s — it’s somewhat sloppy and large:

Here’s a closer shot from C-Span — the signature is a mess:

Here’s an even better copy via the Washington Post. This copy looks less extreme than the earlier images, but you can still tell that in this signature the lines are jerky. It’s as if someone much older if drawing the signature slowly — no longer do you see the clean up and down motion in earlier Trump signatures. Look specifically at the way Trump draws the up and down lines to signify the letters “rum” in Trump — compare that to the way he used to do it in previous signatures. This one is messy, while previous signatures are drawn with very strong up and down lines. It reminds me of how my parents’ signatures degraded as they aged over the decades. But Trump’s degraded in a matter of months.

Compare that to earlier signatures, that appear cleaner, more firm and assured, and less shaky:

It’s hard to say. We do know that had this been any other American president, whose speech slurred inexplicably towards the end of a public appearance, there would be immediate public speculation about his health, and immediate demands for the White House to explain the incident the president experienced today.

But this is Donald Trump. And the fact that he issued a bogus statement about his health during the campaign, and attacked Hillary Clinton’s health with bogus claims that she was seriously ill in the final days of the campaign, makes his health just as much an issue. And in fact, it doesn’t matter that Trump has already made health an issue. He’s our president, and his health is a public mater. We deserve to know what happened.

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The Alt Right is trying to destroy Sam Seder http://americablog.com/2017/12/alt-right-trying-destroy-sam-seder.html http://americablog.com/2017/12/alt-right-trying-destroy-sam-seder.html#comments Tue, 05 Dec 2017 23:28:51 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144041 UPDATE: We won! MSNBC has rehired Sam Seder! _________________________ ​Progressive icon and Majority Report host Sam Seder is under attack from the so-called “Alt Right.” Sam needs our help now. Sign the petition at the bottom of this page, or via this link. Far-right Republican “men’s rights activist” Mike Cernovich, with the help of Seb Gorka and […]

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UPDATE: We won! MSNBC has rehired Sam Seder!

_________________________

​Progressive icon and Majority Report host Sam Seder is under attack from the so-called “Alt Right.” Sam needs our help now.

Sign the petition at the bottom of this page, or via this link.

Far-right Republican “men’s rights activist” Mike Cernovich, with the help of Seb Gorka and Donald Trump Jr., are trying to destroy Sam. And they just might succeed, unless we stop them now. They’ve already gotten Sam fired from MSNBC, and now they’re trying to kill his podcast by going after his advertisers. ​

What was Sam’s sin? He criticized filmmaker Roman Polanski for being a pedophile who raped a 13-year-old girl. Yes, Sam took a public stand against the sexual assault of young girls, and now he’s paying with his career.

Cernovich, a well-known fake-conspiracy promoter, claimed falsely that Sam defended Polanski in a tweet Sam wrote ten years ago. In fact, Sam’s tweet did the opposite — he attacked those on the left who would forgive Polanski for raping a child, simply because Polanski “made good films.”

This isn’t the first time Cernovich has concocted a high-profile lie to advance his extreme political agenda. Cernovich was one of those behind the “Pizzagate” conspiracy theory that falsely claimed Hillary Clinton was running a child sex ring out of the basement of a Washington, DC pizza parlor. That absurd allegation inspired a man to hold the restaurant hostage at gun point.​

As thanks for taking an unpopular stand against sexual assault ten years ago, Sam just lost his job at MSNBC, and Cernovich and the Alt Right are now targeting Sam’s advertisers on his podcast.

Enough is enough. It is outrageous that MSNBC would believe a known liar like Cernovich over someone with a long progressive record of defending all of our fights, including the rights of women. Not only was MSNBC wrong to fire Sam, but now the Alt Right is using the MSNBC move to urge other advertisers to drop Sam as well. MSNBC has quite literally take a fringe kook like Cernovich and turned him into a weapon to attack good progressives like Sam. And once he’s done with Sam, he’ll attack everyone else leading our movement.

Please sign this petition to MSNBC President Phil Griffin, demanding that he rehire Sam Seder and apologize for the harm they’ve already caused Sam’s reputation.

PS Here are some of Mike Cernovich’s views on women. This is the man who MSNBC is taking advice from on sexual assault:

​​

Please sign the petition, and share this with your friends. Thanks so much. JOHN

NB My latest podcast with Cliff Schecter talks at length about the attack on Sam. You can listen to it here — but sign the petition first!

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