Slowing Down

“It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop. “ Confucius

A quote for today reminds me that any progress is better than none at all. I have always felt this way about life. The problem I have encountered is that I want to go through life with no brakes. I need to slow down but still keep moving forward.

First Real Post of 2021

We made it through 2020! I’ve never had a year that was as completely fucked up as 2020 was. I hope that 2021 will at least offer some slight improvement for us all.

My sense of optimism has returned with this New Year, at least for the first few hours. I must admit that I went to bed immediately after midnight and a few kisses from Hal because the need to start the association from 2020 was so strong.

Now, at 0500, I’m awake, and I’ll soon be taking a shower to greet 2021 properly. I’m thankful to report that I’m feeling good, with no shortness of breath. Of course, I want 2021 to be a much better year in terms of my physical health and well-being. I want to avoid any trips to the hospital in the New Year.

I hope that everyone, except for republiKKKans and Nazis, will have a great year. Those two groups can all leave the planet and die as far as I care. They tried to destroy this country, and we must remain on guard against them in the future.

I have to pull out one of the laptops or Chromebooks to continue writing this post so I won’t be guilty of breaking the one pseudo resolution I made myself for 2021. Just as soon as I resolve to get out of this ultra-comfy bed this morning, I’ll get right on that.

I am glad to report that my creative and writing juices are flowing without interruption right now, and it is a welcome change because my love of writing never went away. It suffered at times as the overall awfulness of 2020 just sapped the strength out of me. I don’t miss that feeling at all.

Overall, I am delighted to welcome you in 2021. Let’s hope it lives up to the promise of being better than 2020, which, after all, is a very low expectation of meeting.

Suspect who fatally stabbed black man in Pennsylvania ‘liked’ nearly 50 racist alt-right Facebook pages

Suspect who fatally stabbed black man in Pennsylvania ‘liked’ nearly 50 racist alt-right Facebook pages

Surveillance footage shows Rocco attacking Cameron and his friend, according to the criminal complaint, before confronting the group a second time with a knife. The medical examiner said the cause of Cameron’s death was “massive bleeding.”  

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported on Monday that an undated, 16-second Instagram video showed Rocco defiantly using racial slurs in a bar. “We’re playing a game,” Rocco said in the video. “How many times we can say [N-word] to the bartender before we get kicked out.” It was unclear whether the video was made the night of the murder.

On Facebook, Rocco “liked” nearly 50 pages that traffic in memes and slang favored by the alt-right and the broader white nationalist movement.

Rocco subscribed to pages like “Alt-Right Meme Magic,” “Smash Cultural Marxism,” and “Lazer-Beamed Memes with Fashy Themes,” as well as a scattering of motivational speakers and other pages dedicated to body building. Rocco subscribed to the page of Identity Dixie, an SPLC-designated neo-Confederate hate group.

While Rocco followed larger pages that have promoted alt-right ideas or personalities —like Breitbart, Milo Yiannopolous, and FOX News’ Tucker Carlson — 40 of the pages he subscribed to had fewer than 20,000 likes.

Setting aside the larger page of The Red Elephants (332,373 Likes), a far-right media outlet that has given a platform to white nationalists in the past, the average number of likes on alt-right pages Rocco subscribed to was around 12,500. The large number of small, esoteric pages Rocco followed suggests a sophisticated and committed engagement with the racist subculture.

A review of Rocco’s recent activity confirms this engagement. In the week before the murder, Rocco liked 12 different posts on alt-right related pages, including a post from Australian hardcore white nationalist Blair Cottrell and a meme from the Facebook page “Sons of the West” that features a quote from the interwar period British fascist Oswald Mosley.

Rocco also liked two videos from the Facebook page “Omniphi” that featured speeches from William Pierce, the late leader of what was once one of the most influential neo-Nazi organizations in the U.S., the National Alliance.

On Saturday August 18, the day before the murder, Rocco liked a post from a Facebook group called “Mediocre Memes and Ethnostate Dreams” featuring an illustration of a 1950s suburban neighborhood with the comment “Remember what they took from you.”

The facts around the Sunday’s violence recall the May 2017 fatal stabbing of Richard Collins III, a young black man on the University of Maryland campus. The alleged murderer, Sean Urbanski, who is white, fatally stabbed Collins in an attack authorities called “totally unprovoked.”

It was later revealed that Urbanski subscribed to a Facebook page called “Alt Reich: Nation”, which was removed by Facebook after the murder. Urbanksi was included in the February 2018 SPLC report on alt-right inspired killers. Hate crime charges have since been brought against Urbanksi.

Dreamer’s World

via Hatewatch | Southern Poverty Law Center

August 22, 2018 at 08:35PM

#UniteForJustice: As Impeachment Speculation Mounts, Stop Kavanaugh Protests Planned Nationwide

#UniteForJustice: As Impeachment Speculation Mounts, Stop Kavanaugh Protests Planned Nationwide

Jessica Corbett, staff writer
A stunning series of revelations on Tuesday that could see some of President Donald Trump’s top associates and supporters  behind bars—including a guilty plea from his longtime personal attorney Michael Cohen, who implicated Trump in a federal crime—is fueling support for a nationwide day of action planned for Sunday to protest Brett Kavanaugh, the president’s wildly unpopular U.S. Supreme Court nominee. 
Unite for Justice graphic

Dreamer’s World

via Headlines

August 22, 2018 at 05:38PM

President Can’t Be Picking Who Might Be His Judge’: #StopKavanaugh Meets #ImpeachTrump

President Can’t Be Picking Who Might Be His Judge’: #StopKavanaugh Meets #ImpeachTrump

Andrea Germanos, staff writer
Calls to halt Senate hearings for right-wing Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh—as well as for Congress to move towards impeachment proceedings—resurged after Donald Trump’s former personal attorney Michael Cohen showed the president "is all but an unindicted co-conspirator in a federal crime."
Demonstrator holds sign that reads "#impeach"

Dreamer’s World

via Headlines

August 22, 2018 at 02:26PM

Trump’s crazy-ass deplorable Nazi fascist base

Trump’s crazy-ass deplorable Nazi fascist base

In today’s UnPresidented podcast, we discuss Michael Cohen’s plea deal, and we dig deeper into Trump’s growing mania over the past few weeks — certainly caused by the Manafort and Cohen trials, and the Mueller investigation — and how it might affect the election this fall. Find out why I’m starting to get more bullish on Democrats taking back the Senate too.

This is a 6-minute excerpt of the 68-minute episode. You can hear the entire episode on our Patreon page here.

The post Trump’s crazy-ass deplorable Nazi fascist base appeared first on AMERICAblog News.

Dreamer’s World

via AMERICAblog Gay

August 22, 2018 at 01:14PM

By Double-Digit Margin, Poll Shows Sanders Mopping the Floor With Trump in Latest 2020 Matchup

By Double-Digit Margin, Poll Shows Sanders Mopping the Floor With Trump in Latest 2020 Matchup

Polling results released Wednesday by Politico/Morning Consult show that Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), who is widely speculated to make another run for the Oval Office in 2020, would beat President Donald Trump by double digits.

In a face-off between Sanders and Trump, the senator garnered a 12-point lead, with 44 percent of respondents favoring Sanders, 32 percent who said they would vote to re-elect the president, and 24 percent who didn’t know or had no opinion.

Sanders has repeatedly insisted to journalists that he is currently focused on serving in the Senate and his re-election, though he reportedly has been quietly considering a 2020 bid for months and has declined multiple opportunities to rule out a run.

“What I have said time and time again, my focus right now is on 2018 and to do everything that I can to end one-party rule of the House and the Senate,” Sanders told Stephen Colbert last week. “We’re working really, really hard on that, but it is too early to be talking about 2020.”

While the Vermont senator was the most popular Democratic contender among the 11 included on the poll, former Vice President Joe Biden ranked second, beating Trump 43 to 31 percent. Biden, who has led the pack in some previous polling, said last month that he will make a decision about running by next January and encouraged other 2020 hopefuls to do the same.

This latest poll was conducted Aug. 16–18, before Trump’s longtime personal attorney Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to campaign violations that implicate the president; former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort was convicted for bank and tax fraud felonies; and Rep. Duncan Hunter, the second congressman to back Trump’s 2016 run, was indicted for allegedly spending campaign funds on everything from family vacations to videos games.

Just hours before those damning developments for Trump associates and supporters on Tuesday, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), another potential 2020 contender, unveiled sweeping new anti-corruption legislation. Though Warren’s lead over Trump was slimmer than that of Sanders or Biden, she still led the president 34 to 30 percent, with the remaining 36 percent of respondents undecided.

The other eight potential Democratic candidates included in the poll—Sens. Cory Booker (N.J.), Kirsten Gillibrand (N.Y.), and Kamala Harris (Calif.); New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo; Montana Gov. Steve Bullock; Rep. John Delaney (Md.); former Attorney General Eric Holder; and Michael Avenatti, Stormy Daniels‘ attorney—trailed Trump to varying degrees:

Dreamer’s World

via Headlines

August 22, 2018 at 01:08PM

California congressman is the latest Trump supporter in serious legal trouble

California congressman is the latest Trump supporter in serious legal trouble

Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA) was the second member of Congress to endorse Donald Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign, after Rep. Chris Collins (R-NY). Now, two weeks after Collins was charged with securities fraud and lying to federal agents, Hunter and his wife have been indicted for misusing some $250,000 in campaign funds on personal expenses.

The indictment against Duncan and Margaret Hunter details a number of damning allegations and tells the story of a family allegedly living far outside its means. Over a period of seven years, the couple allegedly overdrew on their family checking account more than 1,100 times, racking up $37,761 in fees, and overcharged their credit cards to the tune of $24,600 in finance fees.

In the meantime, the indictment claims the couple was spending campaign money to pay for everything from groceries, utilities, and medical bills to video games, golf outings, and extravagant vacations, all the while lying to the campaign about the nature of the charges. Duncan even hired Margaret as a “campaign manager,” so that she could collect thousands of dollars a month without doing any actual campaign work.

Oftentimes they insisted that the expenditures were campaign-related, but other times they invented claims to justify the purchases. This included, among other things, $359.57 at Barnes & Noble for what Margaret Hunter claimed were for children’s “toy drives” and a “hospital book drive”; same-day movie tickets for a “gift bundle basket for foothills republican women spring fashion show”; and a personal clothing purchase by Rep. Hunter for what he claimed were “[golf] balls for the wounded warriors.”

The saddest details in Rep. Duncan Hunter’s indictment

Hunter has not publicly commented on the charges, but his spokesperson, Mike Harrison, said that the congressman “believes this [indictment] is purely politically motivated.” Hunter’s attorney, Gregory Vega, similarly wrote to U.S. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein claiming that because two members of the prosecution supported Hillary Clinton, their “overt political leanings” create “an apparent conflict that cannot be ignored.”

Sources claim, however, that U.S. Attorney Adam Braverman, who Attorney General Jeff Sessions appointed, made the decision to indict and deemed recusal unnecessary for the two prosecutors.

House Speaker Paul Ryan (R) this week called the charges “deeply serious” and said Hunter will be removed from his committees until the matter is resolved.

Ryan took the same step after Collins was indicted, removing him from the House Energy and Commerce committee. Collins was charged earlier this month with insider training, after allegedly passing on information to his son about a failed drug trial conducted by an Australian pharmaceutical company on which he is a board member, and in which his son owned stock. He is also accused of lying to federal agents on the matter.

Collins’ attorneys have said they believe he will be “completely vindicated and exonerated,” but the congressman announced a few days after the indictment that he was suspending his bid for reelection regardless.

Hunter has made no indications about the fate of his own race. He represents a very Republican district in California, but his Democratic opponent, former Department of Labor aide Ammar Campa-Najjar, has outraised him throughout the campaign. A poll from the end of July found Campa-Najjar within single digits, trailing Hunter 51-42. They are the only ones set to appear on the ballot in November.

Collins and Hunter were the first members of a group the Washington Post dubbed the “Trump caucus,” originally a group of five lawmakers who supported Trump in the Republican primary. The other three were Rep. Scott DesJarlais (R-TN), Rep. Tom Marino (R-PA), and then-Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL).

Hunter’s indictment comes as President Trump faces increasing pressure over legal woes involving his former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, and his longtime lawyer, Michael Cohen. Manafort was convicted Tuesday on several counts of bank and tax fraud, and Cohen pleaded guilty to tax fraud and campaign finance violations, stemming from payments he made during the election to a woman who claims to have had an affair with Trump.

Dreamer’s World

via ThinkProgress

August 22, 2018 at 01:59PM

A Certain President Is Watching TV and Cutting Loose Online With Excuses for Why All His Friends Are Being Convicted of Crimes

A Certain President Is Watching TV and Cutting Loose Online With Excuses for Why All His Friends Are Being Convicted of Crimes

The White House.

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

It’s Executive Time (watching TV and tweeting time) in America! Today’s theme is reasons why it’s not a big deal that everyone Donald Trump knows was simultaneously convicted of thousands of fraud crimes on Tuesday.

(As always, Matt Gertz of Media Matters is heroically sacrificing himself to track the way that Trump’s assertions match talking points that were broadcast on Fox News shortly before Trump tweeted them. Bless you, Matt Gertz.)

Let’s go through the excuses one by one.

1. The jury didn’t convict Paul Manafort on every count he was accused of. Fact check: True! And yet Manafort was convicted in a Virginia court on eight counts of financial fraud related to his work for Russia-backed gangster-politicians in Ukraine. He faces an estimated seven to 10 years in prison for these convictions and is also awaiting trial on seven other charges, including money laundering and obstruction of justice, in a different trial to be held in Washington, D.C.

2. The crimes Manafort was accused of involved activities that took place 12 years ago. This isn’t really even technically true: Manafort’s work in Ukraine did start in 2006, but the charges he was convicted of Tuesday involved tax returns filed between 2010 and 2014 and bank loans he applied for in 2016. Also, 12 years isn’t actually that long of a time period, and “tax case” is a misleading way to refer to what Manafort is accused of, making it sound like a bureaucratic disagreement over accounting rather than an years-long premeditated effort to defraud the government by lying on official documents.

3. Campaign finance crimes are not crimes. Cohen said in court that Trump directed him to arrange payments to two women (Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal) in order to keep them from going public in the fall of 2016 with allegations that they’d had sexual relationships with Trump while he was married to Melania Trump. Cohen says (and common sense indicates) that these payments were made in order to save Trump’s chance of winning the election, but they weren’t reported on campaign spending disclosure forms. That is, in fact, a crime for which Cohen is subject to jail time. It’s also distinct from what the Obama campaign was fined for, which was failing to document certain contributions in the timely fashion required by the Federal Election Commission. To wit:

• The Obama campaign wasn’t accused of trying to prevent those donations from ever being disclosed, just of not documenting them properly.
• The donations were run-of-the-mill campaign donations, not donations intended to cover up an allegation of extramarital sex that might have affected the outcome of the election.
• Obama was not accused of having any personal involvement in the violations.

So, Trump’s excuses don’t deserve to be taken seriously on the merits. But they do probably provide a nice preview of what he’ll say when/if people with even closer connections to him—like Roger Stone, Jared Kushner, and Donald Trump Jr.—are indicted: That they’re being unfairly singled out because lying to authorities about money and ignoring election laws are no-big-deal things that everyone else does all the time too.

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Dreamer’s World

via Slate Articles

August 22, 2018 at 11:52AM

Mark Taylor Says Mobs Will Murder Hillary Clinton If Trump Doesn’t Begin Mass Arrests Soon

Mark Taylor Says Mobs Will Murder Hillary Clinton If Trump Doesn’t Begin Mass Arrests Soon

Earlier this week, Mark Taylor, the so-called “firefighter prophet” and radical conspiracy theorist about whom Liberty University is making a movie, appeared on Christ McDonald’s “The MC Files” program, where he warned that God had told him that if President Trump doesn’t start making mass arrests soon, Hillary Clinton and others will be dragged from their homes and murdered by mobs demanding action.

As we noted before, one of the central components of the bizarre right-wing QAnon conspiracy theory, which alleges that the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election is actually just cover for the Trump administration’s effort to take down a global pedophile ring, is the belief that special counsel Robert Mueller’s team has been racking up thousands of sealed indictments against powerful political, media, and business leaders who will soon be rounded up in mass raids.

Taylor, an ardent follower of QAnon, has been predicting for months that Trump has been plotting to unleash this wave of arrests and trials of thousands of high-level cannibalistic satanic pedophiles, allegedly including even Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.

Claiming that Trump has already secretly arrested tens of thousands of people as part of this operation but the news is being kept under wraps so as not to destabilize the nation prior to the midterm elections, Taylor warned that Trump must soon make this information public because people are starting to get dangerously restless and America will soon have “an Ambassador Stevens situation” on its hands—a reference to the death of U.S. Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens, who was murdered by a mob of militants in Benghazi in 2012.

“Be praying for the civil unrest, for God to intercede because, again, that could turn out to get nasty,” Taylor said. “The general public right now, they’re in this state like where something better happen quick or some people are going to take matters into their own hands.”

“The Lord showed me that if they don’t act,” he continued, “it would end of being an Ambassador Stevens situation, that they’re going to go to Clinton’s house, they’re going to drag her out in the streets and display her dead body as a trophy if they don’t do something … She won’t be the only one that will happen to if they were not to do this.”

Dreamer’s World

via Right Wing Watch

August 22, 2018 at 10:55AM