"Yes, sir, Mr. Limbaugh! I am takin' orders on the wall from you and Fox 'n Friends! Now, I gotta go shine Mr. Putin's boots!"
"Every day since this man has taken over, there has been some terrible event that has afflicted the country. ..When you pull back the curtain what you realize is that he is a puppet for Fox News and he's a puppet for Putin, for the Saudis and for the dictators". - Former Sen. Barbara Boxer, last night on 'All In'
"I believe this man is afflicted by a seriously sick psyche such that the provisions of the Constitution that transferring his powers to the Vice President should now be brought to bear."- Former Sen. Gordon Humphreys, last night on 'All In'
Well, a partial government shutdown has occurred, even as the screeching buffoon called Trump tries to foist the blame onto the Dems. But do not be deceived by the fog of Right wing or Trumpite baloney, this is all on the "reckless and dangerous" Dotard Donnie. And no matter how much this deranged nutcase yelps about blaming the Dems this is all on him, and his Reeptard cheering section in the Reich media. Let us recall he openly admitted ownership for it before the press in an Oval Office meeting last week with Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer, see e.g.
How the hell did this all unfold given the Senate had completed a CR (continuing resolution) to keep the government going at least into the new year and originally had Dotard's tacit buy-in? Well, what happened is that Dotard Donnie again succumbed to his FOX TV watching addiction (which is mostly what he does each day, besides tweeting) and happened to hear and see a bevy of right wingers (Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Laura Ingraham, Fox and Friends) teeing off on him, calling him assorted names ("gutless") , and not following through on his promises re: the wall. Re: Fox and Friends, The Guardian newspaper once said the show “manages to serve as a court sycophant, whispering in the ear of the king, criticizing his perceived enemies and fluffing his feathers."
This odious sycophant chorus was then amplified by two House Tea Baggers, Mark Meadows and Jim Jordan, who pushed the vote to kill the CR. It then went to the Senate, where 60 votes were needed - given this is a budgetary issue - but they weren't there. There are only 51 Republicans currently after all. So given the lack of votes to support any idiotic border wall, the CR failed as well and here we are. 700,000 government workers now with no money coming in, and just before the Christmas holiday.
Let's also be clear as glass, that as I'd written in an earlier post (Dec. 12) , all this bullshit about the "wall" has nothing to do with Trump actually wanting a real wall or any "border security". Trump could have had $25 b in the summer toward his wall but decided to crap all over the deal because it included at least something for Democrats: protecting the DACA folks. No, all Trump and his minions are about is posturing for the Reeptardo base and doing a big show. The frightening aspect is we have a "resident" who is incapable of analytical evaluation, won't read his daily briefs, and is hostage to cable TV - from which he takes instructions from whatever nitwit is barking at him at a given time.
As political commentator Ezra Klein made clear (on Dec 11, 'All In') about Trump's motivations in his earlier antics i.e. in a White House meeting with Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer:
"Give Pelosi and Schumer credit for putting him in a corner, What struck me so deeply about that meeting is that Donald Trump doesn't himself want the wall. That is not the meeting you want if you want the wall. The difference in what he wants in funding and what he's currently got in funding is about $3.7 billion. That is nothing in the federal budget.
If he wanted that wall he would not have put that meeting in front of the cameras, and he'd be willing to give them something for it.....But the thing about Trump is he doesn't want the wall, he wants the fight over the wall. So I don't think they exactly know what to do about a president who doesn't want his policies because he doesn't care about policy. What he wants to do is have fights with Democrats about policy or about policy ideas or words that sound like policy ideas. And have those fights on camera.
The fact those fights don't redound well for him, the fact he's not in a popular position doesn't seen to really bother him. Trump runs his presidency as if the ratings on the television show he's starring on are good and the punches are seen. And today was a good day in the Trump Show."
As Schumer related yesterday:
“The Senate UNANIMOUSLY passed a bipartisan solution to avoid a shutdown. Then you threw another temper tantrum and convinced the House to ignore that compromise,”
But this is what happens when you have a narcissistic, psychologically warped, dyspeptic imp befouling the highest office in the land and who willingly takes marching orders from a clique of right wing extremist assholes. Oh, but he's also taking orders from Vlad Putin and Turkey's autocrat Recip Tayyip Erdogan - after ordering all U.S. troops out of Syria from a spontaneous brain fart....errr... random tweet.
Look, let's back up a tad here. I was never for barging into Syria in the first place because of the obvious risk of accidental confrontation with the Russians (and indeed, at least one incident did happen in which dozens of Russians were killed). But as geopolitical strategist Ian Bremmer put it three days ago (CBS Early Show interview) , there is a right and wrong way to pull out of a country.
Trump, using a random tweet did it exactly the wrong way, the chaotic way, leaving thoussands of Kurds exposed now to Erdogan's backlash. Already 10,000 Kurds have lost their lives and more stand to - victimized by the Turks and likely the Russians too. Recall the U.S. fighting ISIS and Kurd partnership dates to 2014 (during Obama's tenure) when the Kurds mounted an inspired last ditch defense of Kobani against the ISIL vipers. The Kurds could have stood down and instead consolidated their own gains, but instead fought on against ISIS at U.S. urging. Now that has been for naught, as Trump has tossed them to the wolves, and likely enabled ISIS resurgence.
But let's go back to the ways of a traitor again, or as former Republican Sen. Gordon Humphreys put it last night on All In, "treasonous actions". This latest move has all the earmarks of yet another gift to Putin, perhaps made as early as the 2016 campaign -but delayed as a head fake to the press. Why? Because. without U.S. forces to humbug his Syrian- Mideast aspirations, Putin can consolidate Russian expansion from his base at Latakia on the Mediterranean. No more risking dogfights with U.S. jets for control of air space, and no more U.S. attacks on Russians on the ground. No wonder Putin was ecstatic (as much as this poker-faced guy can be) at his Moscow press conference two days ago, e.g.
US Syria pullout draws Kurdish condemnation and Putin's praise ...
Putin likely was especially pleased Wednesday when Dotard Donnie babbled on Twitter, the chosen medium of five-year olds:
"Now we've won -- it's time to come back. They're getting ready. You're going to see them soon....So our boys -- our young women, our men -- they're all coming back, and they're coming back now. We won. And that's the way we want it."
The fool then pointed up to the sky and blabbed: "And that's the way THEY want it."
Who "they" is we don't know and cannot say. Perhaps Reptilian aliens from a planet in Zeta Reticuli? E.g.
As over 10 million followers of the Reptilian gov't conspiracy meme believe.
What we do know is that Pentagon officials have subsequently confirmed that planning is underway to withdraw troops.
In the words of analyst Nick Patton Walsh, this was a big win for Putin's interests in the region. adding:
"Without the US in the ring, Russia is the main military force in the post-war Syria. However you divine it, Trump seems to have few qualms about doing things that will please Putin."
Of course, because just as he's FOX and Rush Limbaugh's puppet, he's also Putin's. He's basically an empty suit, a sock puppet- with no brains, no honor and no hint of a moral compass. The only thing that matters to him is "winning" in a fictitious way, by grifting, lying and selling snake oil to his foolish, kool aid drinking followers, e.g
As to Trump's claim that ISIS is "defeated" in Syria, Martin Chulov, a Middle East reporter for The Guardian, responded:
The long fight against Islamic State looks good on a map, but it is yet to be decisive on the battlefield. The terror group has lost more than 95% of the territory it claimed in 2014 and the juggernaut that threatened to shred the region’s borders has been battered back to where it all began for the group’s earliest incarnation – a sliver of land along the Euphrates River, bordering Iraq and Syria.
There, Kurdish-led forces, backed by US air support, have been fighting it out with diehard extremists in towns and villages in Syria’s far eastern Deir ez-Zor province.And as the Kurds now face blowback from Tayyip Erdogan's forces there is no strategic way they can hold back the ISIS vermin - who will gradually metastasize like an out of control cancer.
At least 2,500 Isis fighters remain, all survivors of routs to the east and west of their last redoubt. Colossal ruin lays in their wake on both sides of the river. But the group retains the capacity to do even more damage, especially if let off the hook now."
Meanwhile, WaPo political commentator Max Boot. wrote:
"Why would Trump do this now? Who knows? Given that he is acting at odds with his advisers, this is clearly not the result of a normal policy-review process. This is the Trump Doctrine in operation: Trump does whatever he wants. It could be based on what he had for breakfast — or there could be something more sinister going on."
The departure of Gen. Jim Mattis has all our allies in a state of nervous meltdown, as it should. It ought to have us all in a similar state, given there is now no adult in the room minding the overgrown five year old with his paws near the nuclear football. And no, Gen. 'Mad Dog' Mattis didn't leave just because of the sudden Syria pullout, he left after a slew of Dotard misfires, with Syria the culmination. These included, as Gen, Barry McCaffrey spelled out two nights ago ('All In'): Trump's defense of White Nationalists, Nazis back in August, 2017; his caging of immigrant children this past spring, summer; his bowing and scraping to Putin - taking blame for "American transgressions" at the Helsinki conference in July; dispatching 5,000 troops to the border before the midterms as a political stunt to egg his stupid base to the polls; and the impulse decision to suddenly pull troops out of Syria leaving the Kurds to Erdogan, ISIS and Putin's tender "mercies" - or not.
All who've read Gen. Mattis' letter - at least those in the top brass- interpret it as a signature "sign of distress" like "flying the flag upside down" or indicating national emergency. That theme of national emergency has come up before, like after Helsinki, when historian Michael Beschloss stated on July 16th,, (Maddow):
"We are living in a national emergency. We may not have known it twenty-four hours ago. We do now. You know, I have been studying and writing about U.S. Presidents since I was twenty years old. I never thought I would live to say this, but this is a president who now has demonstrated that he deserves suspicion as acting on behalf of another country over his own."
See e.g. Michael Beschloss: “We are Living an a National Emergency” - Daily Kos
Gen. Jim Mattis' departure confirms that ominous take, and now it's not only Americans - but the whole damned world - that had better wake the hell up to the fact we have a lunatic at the helm of the most awesome destructive power ever assembled by one nation.