Today and tomorrow I’ll be attending an out of town occasion. Posting will be limited. Looking ahead I’m reading Salena Zito’s “The Great Revolt, Inside the Populist Coalition Reshaping American Politics,” and I’m working on some other reviews, including some sci-fi and movie stuff. And of course, we must see how Trump will reshape America’s love life in part three of my little comic sketch. Stay tuned.
Here’s one for the anniversary.
“Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.”
Link above to first episode
Dramatis Personae: Melania Trump (MT); President Trump (PT); Vice President Pence (VPP); Brett Kavanaugh (BK); James “Mad Dog” Mattis (JM)
Scene 1 – White House West Wing; 8 am Monday; First Lady’s Office
(Seated across from each other at a small conference table are First Lady Melania Trump and Vice President Mike Pence)
MT – Help me President Vice Mike, you’re our only hope.
VPP – Of course First Lady, but please calm down. It can’t be as bad as that.
MT – Oh, it is much, much, worse. Schmoopey has grown bored with me.
VPP – Schmoopey? Is that your dog?
MT – Schmoopey is my pet name for Donald. You know, your boss.
VPP – Ah, yes that’s right, the name you call each other.
MT – Yes, and he hasn’t called me that in a week. And at night he brings books to bed, books without pictures. And he has a yellow highlighter. And he has stopped tweeting.
VPP – Stopped tweeting? You’re right. This is serious.
MT – Help him Mike. Help him to be Schmoopey again.
VPP – First Lady, you can depend on me. The nation needs that indomitable spirit and free-tweeting, devil-may-care attitude to save us from the giant white pantsuit tyranny of Hillary Clinton.
MT – Yes Vice Mike, you are a great friend, even if you will not shut the door when we are alone.
VPP – Sorry, ah, force of habit.
Scene 2 – White House West Wing, Oval Office, same day 10 am
(President Trump at his desk, dictating a letter to his secretary, while Vice President Pence is seated in front of him.)
PT – Hold on a second Mike. I just want to finish this thought.
(dictating) … In conclusion, President Kim, I will agree to remove all American troops from Korea and provide the two trillion dollars in aid if you promise that afterward you will return the money and allow the return of our troops if after a year we are dissatisfied with your progress. It will be as you called it, your version of the Amazon.com service guarantee.
Donald J. Trump
VPP – Oh, Mr. President, we’ve got to talk.
PT – Mike, old friend, what seems to be the problem.
VPP – Mr. President, something’s wrong, you’re not yourself.
PT – Oh well, it’s that procedure I went through with Brett Kavanaugh. When I decided to exchange temperaments with him I never realized how liberating it would be for me! Why I feel so relaxed and sane.
VPP – But sir, the Democrats are hammering you in the press and without your patented Twitter counterattacks your message isn’t getting out and your poll numbers are sinking.
PT – Well, you know what they say, sticks and stones. Wouldn’t it be better to win in the eyes of the best and brightest? I mean for all we know they’re right.
VPP – But Mr. President, Mueller is sure to see this as a sign of weakness and he’ll subpoena you for sure.
PT – Well what of it. I have nothing to hide and if I have committed any offenses shouldn’t they be exposed to the judicial light of day and adjudicated fairly and honestly?
VPP – Mueller? Fair and honest? ……….. Hey listen, you numbskull, I didn’t sign on to be Ford to your Nixon. We’re gonna reverse that brain drain and get you back to the evil reptilian genius that we all know and love.
PT – Well okay, but there’s no reason to shout. Just let me get my sweater, it’s cold down in the bunker you know.
Scene 3 – Vice Presidential Residence, 3 pm same day
(Vice President Pence is sitting in the living room with Brett Kavanaugh)
VPP – Thanks for coming Justice Kavanaugh and congratulations on being confirmed to the Supreme Court.
BK – Oh, that. Yeah, well, I changed my mind. Being locked up with that Ginsberg mummy until she keels over doesn’t sound like a laugh riot anymore.
VPP – But what will you do?
BK – I’m considering Mixed Martial Arts. But there’s also a combat role in Kurdistan that caught my eye so I don’t know yet.
VPP – Well, that sounds great. But just to show there are no hard feelings the President and I want to invite you to a farewell party. It’s at the White House tonight.
BK – Sounds like a snooze.
VPP – Well, Ronda Rousey’s gonna be there.
BK – Sold!
Scene 4 – White House Bunker, 11 pm, same day
(President Trump, Vice President Pence, three white lab-coated technicians, a platoon of marines and Defense Secretary James Mad Dog Mattis are inside the closed bunker door. Loud techno dance music is blaring and a disco ball is spasmodically turning near the ceiling.)
VPP – Alright does everyone know their parts?
JM – It seems clear. You answer the door and when he steps in my marines overpower him and tie him to the chair. The technicians apply the electrodes and the transfer proceeds.
PT – But what do I do?
VPP – Oh go sit in the other chair and keep quiet.
PT – Fine, but you don’t have to be all mean about it. Geez.
VPP – Alright quiet, I see him coming in the camera. Places!
(Pence opens the door and hands Kavanaugh a drink and ushers him in.)
VPP – Brett! Good to see you made it.
BK – Mike I can only stay a few minutes, can Ronda go for a ride in my Porsche?
VPP – Get him!
(With some difficulty, the marines overpower Kavanaugh but eventually he’s tied to the chair and outfitted with the electrodes.)
BK – Pence you rat! I’ll get you if it’s the last thing I ever do. I’ll shred you with my bare hands. Your own dog won’t know you!
VPP – Hit the switch!
(The procedure ends and the two men are slumped in their chairs.)
JM – Did it work?
PT – Where am I? Hey untie me you boobs. I have a treaty with that little maniac Kim to renegotiate. Two trillion dollars? He’ll pay me two trillion dollars.
BK – Where am I, why am I dressed this way. Oh boy, I said some things I shouldn’t have, didn’t I.
PT – Calm down Kavanaugh. It all worked out fine. Don’t get your judicial robe all in a knot.
VPP – Welcome back Mr. President.
PT – It’s good to be back Mike. But, by the way, I remember everything you said. Numbskull? That’s gonna cost you Mike.
VPP – I meant Schmoopey?
Several months back President Trump stated that Mueller’s investigation must end before September in order to avoid interfering with the midterms. Well, there has been a little bit of back and forth about September 7th versus September 1st, but for all intents and purposes here we are. There are all kinds of rumbling in the media. The most tempting headlines come from politico and the New York Times so I skipped looking at those. Instead I’ll use my own marvelous logic to analyze the situation.
Tomorrow is September 1st and it’s a Saturday. Saturday is typically the perfect day to do something that you don’t want maximally covered in the news. What better day to fire Mueller! Do I think this will happen? I give it a 20% likelihood.
What I do hear, is that Giuliani is compiling a report on the deficiencies of the Mueller investigation. He is going to highlight the partisan decisions in the choice of targets. This will allow him to characterize the investigation as biased and therefore illegitimate. And this I assume will be the basis for pulling the plug on Mueller. I figure it’ll take at least a few weeks to unfold this little passion play. But I don’t imagine once it gets started that it’ll have to be much beyond September 15th before some definitive action will occur. My take on this is that it’s a 50% likelihood. It’s as likely as not to happen within the next two weeks.
And finally, what is the likelihood that nothing will happen until after the election. Well, previously I would have said very likely. But I think things seem to be shifting. That is reflected in a 30% likelihood. I think Mueller has done a lot of damage and seems to be intent on poisoning the mid-terms. President Trump recently said that Jeff Sessions will remain until after the mid-terms. I no longer think that’s true. I think it’s as likely as not that he’ll fire Sessions and begin a counter-attack against Mueller and company before the mid-terms.
Now what would that look like? I assume that firing Mueller, Sessions and Rosenstein will be just the tip of the iceberg. He must appoint a prosecutor to start actions against all the co-conspirators. He must begin proceedings to appoint replacements in the Justice Department and FBI. He must provide public information to the US citizenship and he must do all this without panicking the cowardly sheep in the Congress.
So, all of that’s fine. Good stuff. But look at the risk associated. The screeching from the media could be enough to throw the mid-terms to the Dems, even the Senate. So this is an enormous risk. Then why do I think it’s more likely than not that he will move before the midterms? Because Mueller is going to come out with a late October, maybe even early November surprise to absolutely sway the election. And I think Trump is a risk taker. I think he will roll the dice to prevent Mueller from calling the shots.
We definitely live in interesting times. If you have an opinion, leave it in the comments.
Normally when I take metaphorical pen to paper I like to keep a slightly easy-going and breezy attitude. Often, I use this attitude to allow me to riff on the latest outrages of the Left in one of my high-larious Trump vs XYZ parodies. But today good humor has completely deserted me. I am so thoroughly fed up with Mueller and Manaforte and Cohen and all of the other sleazy disgusting losers that I just want President Trump to lash out and pack them all up for Guantanamo Bay. Seriously, is there no one who will rid me of these people? Listening to the laundry list of offenses petty and felonious makes me want to trade in my human card for something better, like a subscription to the buzzard road kill of the month club.
Now, I understand that this is Mueller’s intention. He wants to inflict the maximum damage to the Republican reputation and morale before the election. And the smartest course is just let anything short of an indictment roll off of us like water off a duck’s back. But what I really want is President Trump to fire Mueller and assign the job to someone who has the full dossier on what the Swamp was doing back in 2016. I want a grand jury to indict Comey, Strzok, Page, Mueller and all the other rats for their part in this con job. To be totally honest I’d prefer to see them tried for treason. And I’d prefer they start the Grand Jury tomorrow.
Honestly, there are two months and more before the mid-terms and I’d rather go skinny-dipping in molten lead than listen to more of this for that length of time. There’s just no reason why we have to be subjected to any more of this. Just fire the low-life skunk and be done with it. Nothing would delight me more than to hear the Dems and the Fake News Media screeching like a chorus of scorched cats.
So here is my official request to you, President Trump. Speaking to you in my capacity as the world’s greatest living expert on everything. Fire them all. Fire Mueller and his pack of legal jackals. Fire everyone at the FBI, CIA and the Justice Department who isn’t demonstrably helping your administration. Fire every single political appointment by Obama and most of W’s. Fire the whole damn State Department and replace them with military personnel. Rehire all the military officers that were fired by Obama for not thinking soldiers should walk around in dresses and high heels. Fire anyone who has the word diversity or affirmative in his job description. Fire the whole damn Education Department and anyone in the NOAA who mentions the words climate and change in that order. And while you’re at it move the damn UN to Detroit. Detroit could use the business and the General Assembly needs to see what their policies look like up close and personal.
Mr. President, consider that this comes from the heart. I’m one of your biggest fans and usually keep quiet on how you take care of business. But I implore you, clean house. I think you’ll gain votes from this and the economy will kick up to 6% growth just from relief. Sermon over.
So, last night I decided to post a story fragment I’ve been futzing around with for some time. It was late and I didn’t check after the fact that the spacing maintained after copying it onto the website. This afternoon when I had a chance to look at it, I saw it was a mess so I straightened it out. My apologies to anyone who opened it up. The draft is still pretty rough and I figure it’s only about 10% of the story but I really kinda like this one and I figured it was reasonable to let people see what I like to write.
My idea is to keep adding sections to it until it’s finished. And then garner opinions on its quality. I harbor secret yearnings to write deathless prose or possibly very long-lived prose. But there it is. My secret vice.
Old people and literary types will have heard of Thomas Mann. He was a German author born in 1875. He won the Nobel Prize in literature in the 1920s and he belonged to the Modernist school. Back in the 1970s if you had a high school English teacher who was especially perverse he would assign a book of Mann’s called “Death in Venice and Other Stories.” Now the title story “Death in Venice,” is vile. It’s the story of an old German writer who has a premonition of death and goes to Venice to feel young again. He has an infatuation verging on pedophilia for an adolescent boy that mercifully goes unfulfilled and then to the reader’s great relief the protagonist dies. The only legitimate reason to read this story is for law enforcement profilers to gain a better understanding of pedophile motivation.
One of the other stories in the book is called “A Man and His Dog.” It is autobiographical and describes Mann’s life in a suburban/rural area of Germany. He chronicles the walks he takes with his approximately German Shorthaired Pointer dog Bashan. We hear about the landscape, the flora and fauna and the farmland occupants of his little world. It is without a doubt, the best thing in the story collection and I’ve always envied his opportunity to share a slice of his world and life in such a congenial narrative. It really is a pleasure to read.
So, even though I keep German Short Haired Pointers, I can’t do what Mann did. I don’t have his facility for felicitous phrasing. But I’m a lot funnier than he was. So, from time to time, I’ll address things in a post that have very little to do with politics, photography or science fiction. When that happens, I’ll assign them to the category “photog’s Corner” and that will be a warning sign of irrelevance to the primary foci of this blog. Caveat emptor.
In a recent post, Why is the New Right Successful? I ended by saying, “Donald Trump is our Northern Star and we will follow him as long as he can withstand the onslaught. If he falls then we’ll be waiting for the spark to ignite the powder keg. Because it’s long been primed.” It was interesting to read Z-Man’s latest post entitled “Waiting For The Spark.” I guess it’s getting kind of unanimous that both sides are getting ready for the dust up. And which side is readiest for the consequences? Disrupting a relatively comfortable life is not the easiest thing in the world to do. But either way everyone seems to sense that something’s gotta give. Hope it’s them and not us.
It’s officially the summer doldrums both on the web and in the real world. I remember an old science fiction short story called the “Silly Season” that had as a premise that during the summer doldrums newspapers were so starved for real news that they would publish any kind of nonsense just to fill space. Apparently the Martians knew about this too so they flooded the news with UFO sightings throughout the silly season for several years running. This had the effect that the papers and their readers became so completely fed up with reading these accounts that when the real invasion began everyone ignored the initial news stories for so long that the humans were conquered before they could react.
That is how I’m beginning to feel about Flynn and Cohen and Manafort and Mueller and Hayden and Brennan and Clapper and Rice and McCabe and Comey and Page and Stryzk and Rosenstein and, and, and!!!
I am completely and utterly fed up with hearing about these idiots. I just can’t decide who is playing whom. Is President Trump about to be dragged off in irons or is Comey and the whole lot of them headed for Guantanamo Bay? Either way I just can’t care anymore about any of this stuff. In fact, I can’t even care enough to make a Trump vs. —– parody about it. The only thing I can think of is to have a parody where he is bored to tears about it. That seems reasonable.
So anyway, sorry for the lack of output. But let’s face it, the silly season is in full swing. If only there were some way to get the Kanamits to load all of the Deep State swamp creatures into the saucer and send them off to that big smorgasbord in the sky. That at least would be worthy of a parody.
A fox den was established in the woods next to me in the spring. Last time I had the 150 – 600 mm Sigma Sport lens I never got a good chance to shoot the male rooting around in our compost pile. Two weeks ago the parents and now large kits stopped showing up around the area and I assumed I’d lost my chance. I rented the 150 – 600 mm Sigma Contemporary for my vacation this week to compare it to the Sport. Today the male fox was spotted a couple of times. So I set up near the compost pile at 6:30 pm and sure enough he showed up. The lens behaved well and I took a bunch of shots. But stupidly I didn’t even notice I was shooting at 150 mm! I was shooting macro all day with the Sony 90 mm macro and I was completely used to shooting everything in the magnified setting so doing it now felt natural. Well, the crops are okay, but that’s got to be the most bone-headed and frustrating mistake I’ve made in at least an hour. But I’m sure to do something stupider soon enough and then I’ll feel better about this one.