Monday, March 27, 2017

Hell week

"If I've lost Cronkite I've lost Middle America," Lyndon Johnson supposedly said after the CBS anchor's documentary/essay on the Vietnam War.  And now Donald Trump has lost the Trump Troubadour.  Kraig Moss sold his business and ignored his mortgage to follow the Orange One around the country, literally singing his praises with a guitar.  Now he says, "He's turning his back on all of us."  Moss's moment of Zen was the late health care act, which contained no provision for substance abuse treatment (Kraig's son Rob died of a heroin overdose).  Americans respond to that which touches them personally -- like the Trump fan in Indiana whose husband now faces deportation for a minor infraction of the law.  And one by one, they drop away.

What else?  Are you sitting comfortably?

The Republicans have spent the last seven years dementedly repealing the Affordable Care Act but when victory seemed at last to be theirs, they couldn't agree on how cruel its replacement should be. They saved face by not even allowing a vote.  Not easy to get cats to march in a parade, eh, Pauly?  Especially the rabid cats of your Free Dumb caucus.

Mike Flynn registered about a week ago as a paid lobbyist for the Turkish government, but we learned that last year he was in on a plot to kidnap Fethullah Gullen, the cleric who lives in Pennsylvania, and take him back to Turkey.  Recep Erdogan wants to blame Gullen for plotting last summer's coup attempt, which some people think Erdogan himself was behind -- a sort of Turkish Reichstag fire.  People like James Woolsey of the CIA, a more credible source than some so-called judge on Fox News.

Nancy Pelosi called Devin Nunes, the in-over-his-head chair of the House Intelligence Committee, a "stooge" for rushing to the White House to blab what he knew about the Russia case before briefing the rest of the committee. I for one am prepared to overlook this insult to the memory of Moe, Larry, Curly, and sometimes Shemp.

This one will make you spit out your beverage of choice.  We now know why Angela Merkel had that "What a Scheisskopf!" expression.  Drumpf -- I mean Trump -- actually handed her an invoice for $300 billion -- plus interest -- for Germany's share of NATO.  Here's what a minister said;  “The president has a very unorthodox view on NATO defense spending. The alliance is not a club with a membership fee. The commitments relate to countries’ investment in their defense budgets.”  He politely failed to add, "This grifter still owes money to the contractors who worked on his bankrupt casinos.  Interest?  Really?"  So I will.  By the way, Merkel's party did very well in the Saarland election today.

The watchword of fascist Italy was "Mussolini ha sempre ragione" ("Mussolini is always right").  The watchword of Trumplandia is "I'm president and you're not," articulated as Michael Scherer of Time tried to pin down the concept of "alternative facts."  If you're going to resurrect the catch-phrases of comedians, Donnie, you might want to forget Chevy Chase and go with Steve Martin:  "Well, excuuuuuuse me!"  Or perhaps Jimmie Walker's "Dy-no-mite!" would complement your threat to have Obamacare "explode," whatever that means. 

Spring cleaning at the Kremlin picks up speed, as a total of eight prominent Russians who might have had something to say about the Manafort-Flynn-Putin connection have died.  A ninth "fell" from a fourth-floor window but is alive in a Moscow hospital, as of this writing.  The object of their efforts pronounced himself vindicated when it was revealed that there were indeed wiretaps of Trump Tower -- legal ones on tenants suspected of gambling and money-laundering.  This is why criminals who are smarter than Trump don't talk on the phone. 

There was more foolery yet if I could remember it, as Casca said.  There is plenty of foolery to come.  And now, Comcast permitting, we'll go to press.




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