Thursday, July 28, 2016

President Obama's entire speech from the Democratic convention last night. If you have not heard this yet, well you need to.

It is very hard to list all of President Obama's greatest speeches in any kind of order, but I would argue that this speech would certainly have to be in his top five, if not top two.

It is inspirational, patriotic, optimistic, and literally EVERYTHING that Donald Trump's speech last week at the RNC was not.

And if you are not fired up to vote for Hillary Clinton after hearing it you might want to check your pulse. 

For those who do not have the time available to hear the entire speech, here is the transcript.

But let me suggest that reading the words on your own is nowhere near as inspirational as hearing them  coming out of the mouth of this great man.

Just a reminder that yesterday was not the first time that Donald Trump suggested that a foreign government hack American computers.

That was two years ago.
And that was from four years ago.

How many incidents does it take to establish a pattern again?

(H/T to Mediaite.)

Words of wisdom from Doonesbury creator Garry Trudeau.

This might be the most accurate description of Donald Trump that I have ever read.

I heard somebody else describe Trump as a comic book villain come to life, and I thought that was pretty spot on as well.

The problem of course is that we have to deal with this idiot in the real world, and cannot simply close up a book or fold up our newspapers and ignore him.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Democratic convention night three open thread. Update!

Tonight's speakers include Jesse Jackson, Harry Reid, Joe Biden, Gavin Newsom, Martin O'Malley, Jerry Brown, Chris Murphy, actress Sigourney Weaver (I love her.), Gabby Giffords, Sherrod Brown, Michael Bloomberg, Tim Kaine, and of course President Obama to close out the night.

I am not expecting any huge surprises or disruptions tonight but it should be quite entertaining.

After all it features one of the greatest President's in our lifetime.

Jesse Jackson: "It's Hillary time!"
Apparently yesterday Andrew Sullivan, a longtime critic of Hillary Clinton, had already reached that decision as well:

Some readers think I’ve been too negative, even cynical, tonight. Believe me, I am utterly uncynical about this election. I’m worried sick. We need to put behind us any lingering beefs, any grudges, any memories from the past – and you know how I feel about the Clintons’ past – in order to save liberal democracy. The only thing between him and us is her. So – against all my previous emphatic denials – I’m with her now. As passionately as I ever was with Obama. For his legacy is at stake as well.

Now somebody needs to go tell those butt hurt Bernie supporters that.

Update: Powerful words from the mother of a victim from the Orlando shooting.
This is just one of the many pro-gun control speeches being delivered tonight.

Update 2: Here he comes.

Everybody loves Joe.

Update 3: And finally the grand finale.

Best President ever!

Update 4: Does not require comment.

Fox News hosts respond to Michelle Obama's speech by claiming that the slaves who built the White House were just "workers" who were "well fed."

Courtesy of Mother Jones:

On his show Tuesday, O'Reilly lauded Obama for "referring to the evolution of America in a positive way." But he then proceeded to fact-check her statement in a way that appeared to excuse the US government's use of slave labor. 

"Slaves that worked there were well fed and had decent lodgings provided by the government, which stopped hiring slave labor in 1802," he said. "However, the feds did not forbid subcontractors from using slave labor. So Michelle Obama is essentially correct in citing slaves as builders of the White House, but there were others working as well. Got it?" 

And there you have it—the worst response to Michelle Obama's 2016 Democratic National Convention address.

Well I might quibble with that definition as the "worst response" since O'Reilly was not alone.

Courtesy of Fusion:

While the veracity of Obama’s historical reference has been widely confirmed and backed up by a number of historians, that did not stop Fox News Radio host John Gibson from penning a tone-deaf blog post bemoaning the fact that the First Lady did not mention the white laborers who also participated in the construction of the White House. 

A couple relevant facts: it was 1792. The land for the District of Columbia was ceded to the federal government by two slave states. Slaves lived in the area and were employed in building much of the capitol,” Gibson wrote. “What, then, is the purpose of appropriating the construction of the White House to black slave workers, neglecting to mention other workers?” 

What Gibson, like so many other racist revisionists, fails to understand is that slaves cannot be “workers” in the sense that they signed up for a job with the expectation of financial compensation and fair treatment. To compare slave labor to the work done by free white laborers is to erase the fact that slaves were subjected to lives of disenfranchisement, horror, and systemic abuse.

Okay so Roger Ailes is out, so just when can we expect the hosts of Fox News to stop being such racist, misogynistic, assholes?

Never mind, I'm pretty sure I know the answer to that question.

New information shows that Russians are trolling on Trump's behalf, the DNC hack was definitely done by Russia, and during interview Trump asks Russia to find Hillary Clinton's "lost" e-mails.

First this courtesy of Business Insider:

Russia's troll factories were, at one point, likely being paid by the Kremlin to spread pro-Trump propaganda on social media. 

That is what freelance journalist Adrian Chen, now a staff writer at The New Yorker, discovered as he was researching Russia's "army of well-paid trolls" for an explosive New York Times Magazine exposé published in June 2015. 

"A very interesting thing happened," Chen told Longform's Max Linsky in a podcast in December. 

"I created this list of Russian trolls when I was researching. And I check on it once in a while, still. And a lot of them have turned into conservative accounts, like fake conservatives. I don't know what's going on, but they're all tweeting about Donald Trump and stuff," he said.

Okay, okay now that does seem a little suspicious. But it doesn't really mean anything right?


Courtesy of Threat Connect:

In our initial Guccifer 2.0 analysis, ThreatConnect highlighted technical and non-technical inconsistencies in the purported DNC hacker’s story as well as a curious theme of French “connections” surrounding various Guccifer 2.0 interactions with the media. We called out these connections as they overlapped, albeit minimally, with FANCY BEAR infrastructure identified in CrowdStrike’s DNC report. 

Now, after further investigation, we can confirm that Guccifer 2.0 is using the Russia-based Elite VPN service to communicate and leak documents directly with the media. We reached this conclusion by analyzing the infrastructure associated with an email exchange with Guccifer 2.0 shared with ThreatConnect by Vocativ’s Senior Privacy and Security reporter Kevin Collier. This discovery strengthens our ongoing assessment that Guccifer 2.0 is a Russian propaganda effort and not an independent actor.

(By the way ThreatConnect is a group of researchers in Arlington, Virginia workign to unravel the source behind the hack of DNC emails.)

 Alright now, that is a little worse, and certainly seems to be further proof that the Russians hacked the DNC, and released their information to Wikileaks so that Julian Assange, who hates Hillary Clinton, could release it right when it would do he most political damage to the Democratic presidential campaign.

But that is not proof that Trump is in cahoots with the Russians and since he just claimed to have "zero investments" with them I'm sure that when he releases his taxes they will back that up.

Wait, what's this?

Courtesy of The Hill:A top aide to Donald Trump said Wednesday that the Republican presidential nominee "will not be releasing" his taxes.


Yeah well it's not like there is any evidence of Trump actually ASKING the Russians to hack and release potentially harmful information about Hillary Clinton.

Courtesy of Politico:

Donald Trump invited Russia to hack Hillary Clinton on Wednesday, asking them to find “the 30,000 emails that are missing” from her time as secretary of state. 

“It would be interesting to see, I will tell you this, Russia, if you're listening I hope you're able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,” the Republican nominee said at a news conference in Florida. “I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press.”

And we're done here.

Apparently Dakota Meyer is competing with his wife for who can be the worst parent imaginable.

Courtesy of Meyer's Facebook page:

Carrying has always been important to me for my own safety but now it is imperative because now I have someone relying on me. Every day, everywhere I go, every time I carry and am honored to be using the Blood Stripe holster from G-Code Holsters

Seriously what in the fuck?

You know I raised my daughter in Alaska, and I have lived here my entire life.

I cannot imagine what dangers Dakota Meyers feels he will face that would justify having a gun near his child every time he spends time with her.

We have harsh elements, icy roads, the same sharp cornered furniture and household poisons that every other place might have, airborne viruses, toxic plants, etc., but none of those dangers are minimized by the presence of a weapon.

All Dakota is doing is introducing an added danger, not protecting her from an already existing one.

Here I was hoping that the above incident was a one time thing, only to learn that Dakota Meyer thinks that handguns and babies go together like PB & J.

And for the final time carrying a gun everywhere you go does NOT indicate what a bad ass you are. It indicates what a coward you are in that you feel helpless without a weapon strapped to your hip.

There are women all over the world caring for their children completely unarmed. Apparently all of them are significantly more courageous than this Medal of Honor recipient.

Congressman Alan Grayson is kind of a dick.

Courtesy of Politico:

Rep. Alan Grayson threatened to have a POLITICO reporter arrested Tuesday,alleging that the reporter assaulted him as he attempted to question the congressman about allegations of domestic abuse. 

The Florida Democrat and Senate candidate was on his way out of an event hosted by POLITICO in Philadelphia when reporter Edward-Isaac Dovere approached him to ask about allegations by his ex-wife that he had battered her over the course of two decades. The congressman strongly denied the allegations in the story, first reported by POLITICO on Tuesday, but he only provided a comment through his lawyer for the article, which detailed police and court documents dating back to 1994.

 A video of the exchange shows Grayson refusing to stop to talk to Dovere and appearing to nudge him aside as the congressman made his way towards the elevator.

You know I used to really admire Alan Grayson and featured a number of his House floor speeches here on IM, along with a couple of his zingers directed at the Republicans.

But then I started hearing about his corruption allegations, and by the time that Harry Reid was calling for his resignation, I was pretty much done.

It seems that so many of the people that we admire turn out to have less than admirable qualities in the long run.

Slate reveals the importance of the Russian DNC e-mail hack.

Courtesy of Slate: 

A foreign government has hacked a political party’s computers—and possibly an election. It has stolen documents and timed their release to explode with maximum damage. It is a strike against our civic infrastructure. And though nobody died—and there was no economic toll exacted—the Russians were aiming for a tender spot, a central node of our democracy. 

It was hard to see the perniciousness of this attack at first, especially given how news media initially covered the story. The Russians, after all, didn’t knock out a power grid. And when the stolen information arrived, it was dressed in the ideology of WikiLeaks, which presents its exploits as possessing a kind of journalistic bravery the traditional media lacks. 


What’s galling about the WikiLeaks dump is the way in which the organization has blurred the distinction between leaks and hacks. Leaks are an important tool of journalism and accountability. When an insider uncovers malfeasance, he brings information to the public in order to stop the wrongdoing. That’s not what happened here. The better analogy for these hacks is Watergate. To help win an election, the Russians broke into the virtual headquarters of the Democratic Party. The hackers installed the cyber-version of the bugging equipment that Nixon’s goons used—sitting on the DNC computers for a year, eavesdropping on everything, collecting as many scraps as possible. This is trespassing, it’s thievery, it’s a breathtaking transgression of privacy. It falls into that classic genre, the dirty trick. Yet that term feels too innocent to describe the offense. Nixon’s dirty tricksters didn’t mindlessly expose the private data of low-level staff. 


The DNC dump may not have revealed a conspiracy that could end a candidacy, but it succeeded in casting a pall of anxiety over this election. We know that the Russians have a further stash of documents from the DNC and another set of document purloined from the Clinton Foundation. In other words, Vladimir Putin is now treating American democracy with the same respect he accords his own. The best retaliation isn’t a military one, or to respond in kind. It’s to defeat his pet candidate and to force him to watch the inauguration of the woman he so abhors.

Yes this is a big fucking deal, and we need to start treating it like it's big fucking deal.

Vladimir Putin is attempting to alter an American presidential election so that the tough minded candidate that he fears will lose, and the orange tinted candy ass he can control will win.

You know in the old Republican party even a hint of collusion with Russia would have inspired them to take their candidate out behind RNC headquarters and beat him with axe handles until he promised to surrender the nomination and leave the country on the next flight to Moscow.

This new RNC is run by a bunch of traitorous wimps.

Just to keep things in perspective.

Did you notice that the two top truth tellers are our current President, and our next President?