AMERICAblog NewsAMERICAblog News http://americablog.com A great nation deserves the truth // One of America's top progressive sites for news and opinion Tue, 16 Jan 2018 15:22:42 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8.5 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 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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Playing fetch with sea lions at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo in Washington, DC (video) http://americablog.com/2018/01/playing-fetch-seals-smithsonians-national-zoo-washington-dc-video.html http://americablog.com/2018/01/playing-fetch-seals-smithsonians-national-zoo-washington-dc-video.html#comments Sat, 13 Jan 2018 15:57:52 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144105 I had the joy of discovering this week that the sea lions at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo in Washington, DC like to play fetch with the zoo visitors.

(Note: About 3:25 into the video, my sea lion friend disappears for a sec, but he’s back in like 30 seconds. And sorry about the lack of sound, but the zoo had music playing in the background and YT wasn’t happy with that. Pretty much the entire video is me saying “good boy!”)

Here’s the video I shot of my visit, with a much longer explanation below.

I’ve been going to this zoo for thirty years, and never realized this until now. The zoo is great, if you ever go to DC — definitely one of the best in the US. And it has this neat underground viewing area, a bit hidden, where you can watch the seals swimming underwater from behind a huge plexiglass. Until this week, I thought the sea lions simply swam by quickly and that was that. Well, apparently, if you get the right sea lion, he likes to play virtual fetch with a stick, just like a dog! I discovered this yesterday afternoon, and spent nearly two hours playing with this one sea lion. I decided to go back today to try to shoot some video of our play time, and that’s what you’re watching here. It was one of the most amazing zoo, and animal, experiences of my life.

We first saw the sea lion yesterday when one of the zoo visitors was running his finger along the plexiglass, and the sea lion was following it and then doing flips when the man swirled his finger. That was pretty cool, all by itself. But after a while, the sea lion stopped following our fingers, and instead kept, seemingly, pointing at a stick on the ground on our side of the plexiglass. We thought the sea lion thought the stick was a treat — and that he was expecting some kind of reward for twirling in the water for us. After a while, we picked up the stick and showed it to him, and the sea lion followed the hand with the stick, so that’s definitely what he wanted. But the sea lion didn’t think the stick was a treat, he thought it was a toy — and kept jabbing his nose at it, like he wanted us to do something with it. I don’t know what possessed us, but somehow someone got the idea to throw the stick, and what do you know, the sea lion chased it and then did a somersault every time he got to the stick. (Also amazing, it was really dark in there by closing time, and the seal still found the stick every time.)

So, apparently, the sea lion wanted to play fetch and, amazingly, somehow communicated that to us. This five-minute video is me going back to the zoo today to have a bit more playtime with that one sea lion. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. JOHN

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President Oprah? http://americablog.com/2018/01/president-oprah.html http://americablog.com/2018/01/president-oprah.html#comments Wed, 10 Jan 2018 18:58:12 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144099 Are you for or against Oprah running for president?

PRESIDENT OPRAH?

A close friend of Oprah’s says she’s giving serious thought to running for president in 2020. It’s been interesting to see the reactions online from folks on the left — people are definitely divided.

Many, like me, see Oprah as eminently qualified (though I worry about her lack of political experience — more on that in a bit), while others seem so burned by the Trump experiment that they really really really don’t want to see another celebrity running for president in their lifetime.

Here’s my take: I like Oprah, a lot. She’s smart, successful (unlike Trump, she’s ACTUALLY a successful billionaire), has shown throughout her life a desire to help others, and she’s likable. And I can’t stress that least part enough. Americans like to vote for people they like. It’s the old “someone you’d like to drink a beer or go to dinner with” standard. And Oprah’s got it, and then some.

The one concern I have, and it’s a major one, is Oprah’s lack of political experience, and particularly experience in Washington. Knowing how to play the Washington game is crucial to getting anything done (or blocking bad things) in this town. That lack of experience hurt Bill Clinton in his first few years, it hurt Barack Obama at the beginning, and (thankfully) it’s hurting Donald Trump now. You really need to know how to work this town in order to be successful, it’s a very particular knowledge. So that’s the big downside I see of an Oprah candidacy. Still, consider me pleasantly intrigued and favorably disposed.

We discuss the Oprah candidacy at the end of our latest podcast, you can listen for free here.

FEINSTEIN RELEASES FUSION GPS TRUMP-RUSSIA TRANSCRIPT

Democratic Senator Diane Feinstein made some news this week when she released the transcript of the closed-door Senate testimony of the man who runs Fusion GPS, the research firm that compiled the Trump-Russia “Steele Dossier.” Congressional Republicans have been shamelessly trying to discredit the dossier, and the entire Trump-Russia investigation, by claiming, among other things, that the entire dossier is Russian disinformation, and that Fusion and the Democrats are the real Russian collaborators! Lindsey Graham even asked the Justice Department to investigate the author of the Christopher Steele, for lord knows what crimes.

In response, Fusion cofounder Glenn Simpson has publicly defended his firm’s work, and recently called on the Senate Judiciary Committee to make public his testimony. The Republican chairman of the committee, Chuck Grassley, who is a total Trump sycophant, refused — so Diane Feinstein released it herself. Grassley is now claiming that this will cause future witnesses to fear speaking with the committee, which is ludicrous since it’s the witness himself who asked that his testimony be released.

And boy what that testimony showed. First, it showed that Grassley’s staff’s only goal is to obstruct the investigation and defend Trump. Second, we learn a LOT about the Steele dossier, including the fact that the entire investigation began as an effort to discern how much Trump was really worth. No one had any inkling that Trump was colluding with Russia to undermine our democracy, and that wasn’t the point of the research at all. But that’s where the facts led. The firm’s leaders became so horrified about what they found that they took it upon themselves, as good Americans, to contact the FBI, since they were concerned that an enemy of the United States (Russia) may have blackmailed a major presidential candidate (Trump).

So it’s understandable why the GOP didn’t want the transript released — it only buttresses the crediblity of Fusion GOP, and the case against Trump.

Oh yeah, one more thing. Not only did the folks at Fusion provide the info to the FBI, but they say they also provided it to the NYT, among other media outlets. Yet, a few months later, the NYT wrote, incredibly, only days before the election, that the FBI had seen no evidence linking Trump to the Russians. When in fact, the FBI had seen a lot of evidence and the New York Times knew it. Then why did the Times publish that story falsely exonerating Trump with one week to go to the election? You’ll have to ask them.

WON’T YOU PLEASE SUPPORT MY WORK THIS YEAR?

As many of you know, I moved back to DC this past year from New York City so that I could redouble my efforts to take on, and down, Donald Trump. I’ve formed an LLC, and a new organization, AMERICAblog Action, to help with those efforts, and have been growing my email action list with the express purpose of turning the Congress a lovely Democratic 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. 

AND PLEASE SUBSCRIBE TO OUR POLITICAL PODCAST

Also, our new podcast (basically a radio show you listen to online), 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 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.

And a lot of you did subscribe in the last two weeks. Thank you so much for that!

ISSA IS TOAST

Oh, I almost forgot. Late breaking news as I’m writing this update: uber-conservative GOP congressman Darrell Issa has just announced he’s not running for re-election this November. Issa was already expected to have a hard time getting re-elected, and now he’s called it quits. This is because a growing number of Republicans recognize that it’s going to be very difficult to hold on to control of the US House in the wake of Trump’s historic unpopularity. So this is great news for Democrats, and one more piece of evidence of a growing Democratic wave for the congressional mid-term elections in November 2018.

With that in mind, as part of my stepped up election advocacy this year, I’m going to be continually providing you opportunities to donate in important races that we can win. Here are two you can help right now:

1. Help stop racist “sheriff” Joe Arpaio in Arizona. He’s just announced he’s running for the US Senate, and we have a real chance at winning this seat. You can donate to the eventual Democratic candidate here.

2. Donate to Randy “Iron Stache” Bryce, the blue collar ironworker taking on GOP US House Speaker Paul Ryan in Wisconsin. Bryce is another Dem with a serious chance of unseating Ryan, which would be simply delicious, considering Ryan’s sycophantic defense of Donald Trump. Please support his campaign here.

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 you can subscribe to my political update emails here.

Twitter: @aravosis

Facebook. My personal pageAMERICAblogUnPresidented Podcast

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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, 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, 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 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 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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YES WE CAN defeat Roy Moore! http://americablog.com/2017/12/yes-can-defeat-roy-moore.html http://americablog.com/2017/12/yes-can-defeat-roy-moore.html#comments Thu, 14 Dec 2017 22:29:43 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144069 Our latest UnPresidented Podcast celebrates Roy Moore’s big loss.

We also discuss the faux FBI scandal the GOP is using to undercut the Trump-Russia investigation, and Omarosa’s ignominious departure from the White House.

Just click to listen below:

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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 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, 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 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:

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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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Trump’s latest tweet might get him banned from UK as an extremist http://americablog.com/2017/11/trumps-latest-tweet-might-get-banned-uk-extremist.html http://americablog.com/2017/11/trumps-latest-tweet-might-get-banned-uk-extremist.html#comments Wed, 29 Nov 2017 18:41:39 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144027 Donald Trump may have just gotten himself banned from entering the United Kingdom under the country’s strict anti-extremism policies.

Add your name to the petition calling on the British government to endorse British law, and ban Trump from entering the UK.

Trump today retweeted a series of hateful anti-Muslim videos — at least one of which is a known fake, according to the Dutch government — from a notorious British hate group, “Britain First.”

British Prime Minister May’s official spokesman accused Britain First of spreading “hateful narratives which peddle lies and stoke tensions.” He added, “The British people overwhelmingly reject the prejudiced rhetoric of the far-right, which is the antithesis of the values that this country represents — decency, tolerance and respect. It is wrong for the President to have done this.”

The Washington Post has more on the extremist group — they’re appalling.

The problem for Trump, and now PM May’s government, is that Trump should now rightfully be banned the UK for fomenting extremism.

Under UK anti-extremism guidelines, the government has the right to exclude non-UK nationals from entering the country if they use their position to disseminate hate. Specifically note the sections dealing with “using a position of responsibility” and “express[ing] views which…. foster hatred which might lead to inter-community violence in the UK.” May’s statement already admits that Trump did just that: “hateful narratives which peddle lies and stoke tensions.”

Whether he’s embracing neo-Nazis, endorsing accused pedophiles, or fomenting anti-Muslim hate speech, Donald Trump thinks he can spread hate and extremism without consequence. In the interest of us all, the British government must enforce its own anti-extremism guidelines and ban Donald Trump from entering the UK until, as the guidelines require, he repudiates his extremist views.

Please sign the petition to Prime Minister May, and urge her to do the right thing.

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Gorka get your gun http://americablog.com/2017/11/gorka-get-gun.html http://americablog.com/2017/11/gorka-get-gun.html#respond Wed, 29 Nov 2017 17:14:34 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144021 Trump embarrasses the nation once again by using a racist slur about Native Americans in front of a group of Native American heroes at the White House; there’s growing evidence that former Trump aide, and far-right troll, Seb Gorka thinks he’s James Bond; and Trump, Roy Moore and their buddies at Project Veritas make a failed effort at tearing down the media.

That and more of the latest news in today’s latest episode of the UnPresidented Podcast. Just click the white arrow in orange circle below to listen.

Then, subscribe to the UnPresidented Podcast for as little as $5/month and get access to our weekly premium episodes to boot (and you’ll be supporting our work too!) Thanks, JOHN

(Gorka image by Gage Skidmore, and James Bond theme by Monty Norman.)

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“Treason’s Greetings” – Resistance Xmas gifts http://americablog.com/2017/11/treasons-greetings-resistance-xmas-gifts.html http://americablog.com/2017/11/treasons-greetings-resistance-xmas-gifts.html#comments Mon, 27 Nov 2017 22:14:09 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144010 We’ve got some last-minute stocking stuffer t-shirts that will only be available over the next week until Sunday, December 3 (so folks can get them in time for Christmas), and which help fund our Resistance work.

Here are the two new designs:

NEVERTHELESS, SHE PERSISTED

TREASON’S GREETINGS

The first is our very-popular “Nevertheless, she persisted” design — personally, I think TIME is going to make women its Person of the Year 2017. Regardless, this is clearly our year of the woman.

And the second is a popular design I sold over ten years ago during the Bush administration, and just had to bring back for Donald Trump: “Treason’s Greetings.”

Here they are — they come in a variety of colors, unisex and women’s styles:

The shirts are $25 each — and a sizable portion of each purpose goes directly to fund my work. (The more shirts we sell, the better the commission.) Please have a look, buy some, and share them with your friends on social media.

Thanks so much!

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Roy Moore’s lawyer makes racist comments about MSNBC’s Ali Velshi http://americablog.com/2017/11/roy-moores-lawyer-makes-offensive-racial-comment-msnbcs-ali-velshi.html http://americablog.com/2017/11/roy-moores-lawyer-makes-offensive-racial-comment-msnbcs-ali-velshi.html#comments Wed, 15 Nov 2017 21:25:27 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=144002 Roy More’s lawyer Trenton Garmon brought up MSNBC’s Ali Velshi’s “awesome diverse background” in defending Roy Moore’s claim that he asks the parents of young girls if he can date them.

Velshi is Canadian. But he’s dark. And it appears the lawyer thinks Velshi is from a country where marriages are “arranged.” (Velshi was born in Kenya.)

It was supremely bizarre, and supremely offensive. Below is Velshi and his cohost, Stephanie Ruhle.

And then donate to Roy Moore’s Democratic opponent, Doug Jones — the election is December 12.

And here’s a snippet of the transcript:

Ruhle: Why would he need permission from any of these girls’ mothers if they weren’t underage?
Garmon: Sure, that’s a good question. Culturally speaking, obviously there’s differences—looked up Ali’s background there. Wow—that’s awesome that you have got such a diverse background. It’s really cool to read through that. But point is this, each culture has its —
Ruhle: What does Ali’s “background have to do with dating a 14 year old?
Garmon: I’m not finished with the context of it. Point of it is this —
Ruhle: Please answer. What does Ali Velshi’s background have to do with dating children, 14 year old girls?
Garmon: Sure. In other countries, there’s arrangement through parents, for what we would refer to as consensual marriage, so.
Ruhle: Ali’s from Canada.
Garmon: I understand that. And Ali’s also spent time in other countries—
Ruhle: So have I!
Garmon: It’s not a bad thing.
Velshi: I don’t know where you’re going with this, Trenton.

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The yearbook signature “is” Roy Moore’s http://americablog.com/2017/11/yearbook-signature-roy-moores.html http://americablog.com/2017/11/yearbook-signature-roy-moores.html#comments Wed, 15 Nov 2017 01:24:20 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=143998 Roy Moore has yet to explain how a seemingly perfect match of his signature appeared in a 16-year-old girl’s yearbook from 1977.

The now-woman, Beverly Young Nelson, says Moore approached her at a diner, asked to sign her yearbook, and then later offered to give her a ride home and tried to rape her.

Moore denies knowing the woman or even having heard of the diner. (Moore’s wife even claimed the diner never existed — in fact, the media found it, it did.)

But not much has been said about the “Roy Moore” signature in the yearbook. Josh Barro got a copy of Moore’s recent signature from this year and published it on Twitter. And lo and behold, it sure looks like the same signature that you’ll find in that little girl’s high school yearbook.

I took the signatures, and using Photoshop, isolated them and cleaned them up a bit to make them higher contrast. Here they are side by side:

roy moore signature

They sure look like the same person signed both documents. Look at the unique R and the unique M — they’re identical. The way the o flows in the y in Roy. The way the top part of the y is written. The way the first o in Moore is written, and the way the the “ore” is written as well.

It certainly appears that either Roy Moore signed that girl’s yearbook, or someone signed it attempting to forge Roy Moore’s signature. So now the question is — what era does the ink date from? Is it new ink, or is it ink that’s 40 years old? I can’t imagine an expert can’t check that. And that would seal the deal, as it’s difficult to believe that someone 40 years was trying to impersonate a 32-year-old Roy Moore in a rural Alabama diner.

 

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McConnell: I believe the women, Moore should step down http://americablog.com/2017/11/mcconnell-believe-women-moore-step.html http://americablog.com/2017/11/mcconnell-believe-women-moore-step.html#comments Mon, 13 Nov 2017 18:32:34 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=143995 The Roy Moore child molestation scandal continues to grow, with Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell now publicly saying that he believes the women, and he is calling on Moore to step down. Here’s my take on why this matters….

First, as background, I wrote extensively about this story here, you can listen to my podcast about it here, and please donate to Roy Moore’s Democratic opponent Doug Jones here.

As you know, Moore is running in a special election this December 12 for the US Senate seat that Jeff Sessions gave up when he became Donald Trump’s attorney general. Moore is running against Democrat Doug Jones, who is a great guy, and now may beat Moore as a result of this scandal, particularly in light of the growing Democratic momentum following this Tuesday’s election blowout in Virginia and across the country.

Now, back to McConnell. Why does this update matter? A few points.

1. Can Doug Jones win?

Yes. It was always considered a longshot, but a doable one, but after the surprising success Democrats had nationwide in this past Tuesday’s election, Jones’ chances grew significantly. And now, after this past Friday’s allegations that Moore sexually molested a 14-year-old girl who he met at her custody hearing (creepy!), and is alleged to have hung out at high schools and malls looking to pick up teenagers when he was in his 30s, Jones’ chances grew exponentionally.

2. Then the GOP Senate steps in.

A number of Republican Senators had already taken back their endorsement of Moore’s candidacy, but McConnell’s statement this morning is a game changer in a number of way. It makes it nearly impossible for any Republican in Washington, DC to continue supportiong Moore. But more importantly, it raises the question of how McConnell, who has just said publicly that he believes Roy Moore is a child molester, can seat Moore in the US Senate if and when he wins in December.

Now, from the research I’ve done, it might be difficult for the Senate to not recognize Moore’s election as legitimate. Typically, the Congress can only say “no” to seating a new member if they believe the constitutional requirements were not met, such as the election not being legit. In Moore’s case, what the Senate could do is seat Moore and then immediately expel him from the chamber, which they very much CAN do. This was the approach they were going to take to remove serial sexual harasser, and former Senator, Bob Packwood. But the threat to do it was enough to force Packwood to resign.

So the question arises: How could McConnell NOT move to expel Moore after saying that he believes Moore is a child molester? He can’t.

Now, what happens after the Senate expels Moore in December? In many states, the governor can appoint a new Senator who serves until the next regularly-scheduled election. In Alabama, the governor appoints an interim Senator while a new special election is scheduled. So Alabama would have to hold ANOTHER election, and hope that Moore doesn’t win. I don’t know whether the local party could refuse to put him on the ballot. But it could get messy if Moore were to run again.

3. What does this mean for the GOP nationally?

Nothing but trouble. I’d like to think that Republican Senators are dumping Moore because of the goodness of their hearts, but in politics everything is political. They’ve calculated that they’re better off dumping Moore than keeping him, likely, in part, because they’re worried about the effect electing a child molester could have on the party’s national brand going into the 2018 election, and on the rallying cry Moore will be for congressional candidates, and grassroots Democrats, in the coming year.

But, any move against Moore risks creating more of a rift between the Trump-Bannon wing of the party (while Trump didn’t side with Moore, Bannon did) and the more sane McConnell-Ryan wing. (I know, we’re at the point where McConnell and Ryan are the adults in the room.) And that’s nothing but good news for Democrats. The more Republicans fight amongst themselves, the less time and money and energy they have fighting Democrats.

So all in all, if you wanted to stop Roy Moore, and cause the most damage possible to Republicans, that’s exactly what’s happening.

Now go donate to Moore’s opponent, Doug Jones, who is a great Democrat and now can actually win this.

This is getting very interesting. Boy, winning is a lot more fun than losing.

JOHN
red-donateWith the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever. Please support my work with a $25 donation. We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

Subscribe to our political action emails here.

Twitter: @aravosis

Facebook. My personal pageAMERICAblogUnPresidented Podcast

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Alabama GOP now openly defending pedophilia in defense of Roy Moore http://americablog.com/2017/11/alabama-gop-now-openly-defending-pedophilia-defense-roy-moore.html http://americablog.com/2017/11/alabama-gop-now-openly-defending-pedophilia-defense-roy-moore.html#comments Fri, 10 Nov 2017 01:02:57 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=143966 In the wake of the Washington Post’s blockbuster story today that four women have accused Alabama Republican US Senate candidate Roy Moore of inappropriately touching them while they were teenagers aged 14 to 18, and Moore was in his 30s, Alabama Republicans are circling the wagons by openly defending pedophilia.

Moore, a fire-and-brimstone anti-gay family values crusader is running against Democrat Doug Jones for Jeff Sessions US Senate seat in a special election taking place next month on December 12.

You can donate to Doug Jones here.

Moore is accused of, among other things, “dating” a 14-year-old girl in 1979, who he took to his home in the woods, took off her and his clothes, touched her breasts and her crotch through her underwear, then attempted to put her hand on his erect penis through his underwear. Moore was 32 at the time.

Moore’s defense is that the women’s allegations were cooked up by Barack Obama and the Clintons. Which is a pretty tricky move, considering the 14-year-old told her friend in 1979 that she was dating a man named “Roy Moore.” Did President Obama take Hillary and Bill back in their time machine to 1979 to set Moore up?

Not to mention, the worst story about the 14-year-old, comes from a woman who voted for Trump.

Even worse is the defense of Moore being made by Alabama Republicans. They’re literally unbelievable. First we have the “Mary and Joseph did it” defense:

Then comes the “undressing 14 year old girls is much ado about nothing”:

If you accept the Washington Post story as being completely true, Roy Moore at age 32 undressed a 14-year-old girl, touch her breasts and crotch, and then tried to put her hand on his erect penis. It’s child abuse.

Actually, she’s saying that he undressed her, undressed himself, grabbed her breast and her crotch, and then tried to put her 14-year-old hand on his 32-year-old erect penis.

And finally, the team from “pedophilia is okay if you’re horny” weighs in:

Republicans in the Senate were all handed the same talking point, which they’ve dutifully repeated en masse — namely, that “if” the allegations are proven true, Moore should step down. But until that happens, they’re happy to endorse Roy More.

You can donate to Roy Moore’s Democratic opponent Doug Jones here.

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BREAKING: Roy Moore sexually assaulted 14 y.o. girl, woman alleges http://americablog.com/2017/11/breaking-roy-moore-sexually-assaulted-14-y-o-girl-woman-alleges.html http://americablog.com/2017/11/breaking-roy-moore-sexually-assaulted-14-y-o-girl-woman-alleges.html#comments Thu, 09 Nov 2017 19:13:44 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=143958 Bombshell election news. Religious right US Senate candidate, Roy Moore, of Alabama, allegedly sexually harassed and/or assaulted four young girls, age 14 to 18, when he was in his 30s, according to a breaking story from the Washington Post.

The special election in Alabama is next month, in early December. Moore is running against Democrat Doug Jones. You’ll recall that Moore is the guy who wants to recriminalize homosexuality.

The worst story of all — Moore allegedly picked up a 14 year old girl, when he was 32, took her back to his home in the woods, removed his clothes, removed her clothes, then touched her breasts, her crotch, and put her hand on his crotch. The girl told friends at the time that she was dating an older man, and even named Moore to one of the friends. If, as Moore now claims, these are political lies, why would a 14 y.o. girl make up these lies 40 years ago about the then- relatively unknown Roy Moore?

Doug Jones already had an interesting shot at winning this race, even before this past Tuesday’s election blowout, but now with Moore facing multiple accusations of sexual improprieties with teenage girls, in the of a nationwide scandal over sexual assault, Jones has a real chance of winning this. Donate to Jones’ campaign here.

Moore regularly invokes God as his inspiration for all things political, including his refusal to permit government officials in his state marry gay couples even after the Supreme Court mandated it. So these allegations, particularly against the uber-religion-on-his-shoulder Moore is huge.

Interestingly, Moore is today claiming that the fact that the woman waited this long to accuse him proves that they’re lying: “If any of these allegations were true, they would have been made public long before now,” Moore said today in a statement.

Yes, because what the last few months have shown is that nobody buries these things for years or decades at a time.But that would mean that all the other women who have come forward in the nationwide discussion about sexual harassment and sexual assault are also lying, at least any of them who didn’t come forward immediately after their alleged harassment/assault. Is Moore really willing to say this?

UPDATE: Moore is now claiming that Barack Obama and the Clintons somehow are behind the 14 year old girl, in 1979, telling her friend at the time that she was dating a grown man named “Roy Moore.” How’s that work exactly? Did the Obama and the Clintons go back in a time machine to 1979 and have the 14 year old girl lie 40 years ago, just in case Roy Moore ran for Senate in 2017?

Not to mention, the worst story, about the 14-year-old, comes from a woman who voted for Trump.

Look, this is the Republican party, and this is Alabama. Don’t put it past them to elect someone who is not only facing assault accusations, but who has confessed to them (i.e., Donald Trump). But, this is bad for Republicans nationwide, especially after last Tuesday’s election rout of the GOP. They do NOT need to have a candidate on the ballot, and a Senator seated in the Congress, who is accused by multiple teenage girls of what basically consistutes child abuse in the middle of a nationwide scandal over that very issue.

Already, GOP Senator Jeff Flake has told MSNBC that if there is any shred of truth to the charges, Moore should step aside immediately. Even Mitch McConnell says tat if the allegations are true, Moore needs to step aside. He’s in trouble.

Remember, when the accusations against Harvey Weinstein went public, Republicans demanded that Democrats rebuke him and distance themselves, and they did. Will Republicans do the same with Moore?

Doug Jones has a real chance here. And regardless of how Moore fares in December, this controversy could cause major damage to the Republican party over the next month and year leading into the crucial 2018 congressional elections.

Please donate now to Roy Moore’s opponent, Doug Jones — we can win this next month in Alabama.

Thanks, JOHN

red-donateWith the election of Donald Trump, AMERICAblog’s independent journalism and activism is more needed than ever. Please support my work with a $25 donation. We don’t make much on advertising, we need your support to continue our work. Thanks.

Subscribe to our email udpate here.

Twitter: @aravosis

Facebook. My personal pageAMERICAblogUnPresidented Podcast

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The latest on Trump-Russia http://americablog.com/2017/11/latest-trump-russia.html http://americablog.com/2017/11/latest-trump-russia.html#comments Thu, 09 Nov 2017 19:05:04 +0000 http://americablog.com/?p=143952 Lots of Trump-Russia updates, including Donald Trump Jr. and Jared Kushner in increasing danger, the Flynn boys reportedly on the verge of being indicted, and the ongoing damage of Carter Page’s glorious public meltdown.

Will Trump & company escape with some last-minute pardons? Not if the NY attorney general has anything to say about it. All that and more in today’s Trump-Russia podcast — click the orange arrow to listen.

Please subscribe to the UnPresidented Podcast on iTunes  and leave us a rating & review. And access our premium shows by becoming a patron here on Patreon.

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