A.M. Links: Trump’s Lawyer Troubles, Larry Nassar’s Michigan State Boss Arrested, Paul Ryan ‘Is Not Resigning’

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  • Todd Kranin

    New poll: President Donald Trump's approval rating is at 42 percent.

  • "A prominent Chicago defense attorney said Monday that he had declined an invitation to lead President Trump's legal team responding to special counsel Robert S. Mueller III's Russia investigation, underscoring the president's difficulty in attracting top legal talent to represent him in the probe."
  • "The speaker is not resigning," said AshLee Strong, spokeswoman for House Speaker Paul Ryan, in response to rumors that Ryan would be stepping down.
  • William Strampel, who was Larry Nassar's boss at the University of Michigan Michigan State University, has reportedly been arrested.
  • Linda Brown, one of the figures at the center of the Supreme Court's landmark ruling in Brown v. Board of Education, has died at age 75.

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302 responses to “A.M. Links: Trump’s Lawyer Troubles, Larry Nassar’s Michigan State Boss Arrested, Paul Ryan ‘Is Not Resigning’

  1. President Donald Trump’s approval rating is at 42 percent.

    The rest REALLY super approve of his job.

    1. “45% of women who consider themselves GOP or lean that way say they believe the women”

      But we don’t know what percentage of the women alleging the affairs approve of the President’s performance. Inquiring minds want to know!

    2. Hello.

    3. That’s more than the approval rating for opinion polls.

  2. A prominent Chicago defense attorney said Monday that he had declined an invitation to lead President Trump’s legal team…

    Well, at least he still managed to get his name in the news.

    1. What is even the relevance of this “news”? I know WaPo readers need their daily affirmation of what a poopyhead Trump is but come on.

      1. It does underscore the fact that the President has a history of stiffing his creditors, including lawyers. Trump has bragged about how many white shoe Manhattan law firms he has stiffed.

        What a loser.

        1. There is nothing wrong with stiffing lawyers. People should always do so as a general rule.

          1. Mike has a pathological need to dis Trump at every opportunity.

    2. His lawyers end up needing their own lawyers.

  3. “The speaker is not resigning,”

    he will be sighing, again, though

    1. Thank you, Romney, for bringing this loser out of the shadows.

      1. I’m here of my own accord, how dare you.

        1. The fact that you drive a mediocre Honda is supposed to impress me?

          1. That is very civic of you.

            1. Just one element in my arsenal.

              1. Don’t take one compliment as a passport to make even more Honda puns.

            2. Now, ow, can’t we all reach some kind of accord here? While you all cinder that I will be out on the ridgeline, contemplating my next odyssey. I’m considering getting my pilot’s license.

              1. Cessna don’t want those vehicles anymore, can I have them?

          2. But it’s got a lot of dog storage space on the roof.

            1. 47% more space than the camry.

          3. Romey did convince me to trade in my dodge shadow, though.

  4. “The speaker is not resigning,” said AshLee Strong, spokeswoman for House Speaker Paul Ryan, in response to rumors that Ryan would be stepping down.

    Although he may take another position as Minority Leader.

    1. “No, not Ashley, it’s AshLee!”

  5. “A prominent Chicago defense attorney said Monday that he had declined an invitation to lead President Trump’s legal team responding to special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s Russia investigation, underscoring the president’s difficulty in attracting top legal talent to represent him in the probe.”

    It’s a shame Robert Kardashian is no longer with us.

      1. Jackie Chiles is still available.

        “It’s lewd, lascivious, salacious, outrageous!”

      2. This is Chewbacca…He is a wookie from the planet Kashyyyk….

      3. Robert Kardashian is the much funnier reference, you goof-ass mook.

      4. Why doesn’t he call F Lee Bailey? Has that guy ever lost a case?

        1. F Lee Bailey lost his law license for misconduct.

          1. Trump has a pen and a phone.

            1. Only Obama had that kind of power.

      5. Trump would not be able to secure the services of such talent because he is allergic to paying his counsel fees.

  6. “The speaker is not resigning,” said AshLee Strong, spokeswoman for House Speaker Paul Ryan, in response to rumors that Ryan would be stepping down.

    Whether or not Ryan keeps his job isn’t totally up to him. The voters have a say in the matter, and some of the voters I’ve been hearing from are collecting torches and pitchforks.

    1. And Paul Ryan owes John Boehner a most profound apology. Hara-kiri is suitably profound.

      1. Frankly, he owes all of us an apology at least as profound.

        1. The worst thing about being majority leader is you can only kill yourself once.

      2. Do you know how Chris Christie plans to atone for his RHINO sins?

        Hara hachi bu.

        1. More like Hara hibachi.

          1. Hara hamachi?

              1. I suspected he might.
                But the more I thought about it, the more I realized it just didn’t add up.

            1. Buffet stampede?

    2. It says he won’t *resign,* not that he won’t be un-elected.

  7. William Strampel, who was Larry Nasser’s boss at the University of Michigan, has reportedly been arrested.

    No deets, so let’s speculate on why.

    1. Unregistered firearms?

    2. Got caught surfing on computer wires with his anus.

  8. Eagles of Death Metal singer and Bataclan attack survivor Jesse Hughes calls March for Our Lives ‘pathetic’ and says the students who lived through the Parkland shooting are ‘vile abusers of the dead’
    Jesse Hughes, 45, took aim at those participating in the March for Our Lives protests on Saturday across the country
    The Eagle of Death Metal singer has since deleted the five Instagram posts
    Hughes survived the Paris terror attacks in 2015 when jihadists stormed a concert venue while he was performing on stage
    His posts suggested that Florida school shooting survivors were capitalizing on the deaths of their classmates by staging protest walkouts

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/new…..rters.html

    He shared an illustration of a woman telling a man: ‘I turned in my gun to do my part in ending violence’, before he replies: ‘I chopped off my own d**k to stop rape’.

    1. By the way, EoDM is a kick ass band. Nothing death metal about them.

      1. Saw them live at Hammerstein Ballroom a while ago (want to say 10 years ago). Haven’t listened to them or QotSA but may have to dig into the digital crates.

        1. Another band worth checking out is Them Crooked Vultures. Another Josh Homme project. Him with Dave Grohl and John Paul Jones. Talk about power trio.

          1. Ain’t life grand, sarc. We have very similar tastes in women but the divergence in our music tastes is wider than Hillary’s rear end.

            1. Can’t win them all.

              My musical taste is all over the place. I like pretty much everything Josh Homme has done, but I also like poppy dance shit like Yelle and Yacht. I like Jack White on guitar but I prefer Dead Weather with him on the drums. Beastie Boys will always be a favorite of mine, but I hate most rap. I can play Dave Brubeck’s Take Five on piano, trumpet, and guitar.

              So unless you’re into country or bluegrass, there’s a chance our musical tastes aren’t as divergent as you might think.

              1. Perhaps you are right.

          2. Hey, thanks! 😎

      2. *haven’t listened to them in a while

    2. Good on them for speaking up against this.

      Everyone who walks out of school for a protest, disrupts class, or shouts down an invited speaker should be suspended. To say nothing of the goons who assault other students over politics and somehow never get arrested or expelled.

      But the teachers are usually the jerks who put them up to it, so nothing else happened.

      1. I’m even more disgusted by cities like Baltimore spending tax dollars to bus these punks to DC protests.

        1. It’s a pretty clever way to make them some other city’s problem.

        2. Best if it’s only one-way.

      2. Hell, I wonder how, if one actually abides by state law and all,. how any of the whining bitches from that high school — who probably bullied the shooter anyway — can possibly pass, given the numerous classes they’ve had to miss.

  9. “A prominent Chicago defense attorney said Monday that he had declined an invitation to lead President Trump’s legal team responding to special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s Russia investigation, underscoring the president’s difficulty in attracting top legal talent to represent him in the probe.”

    Legal experts can tell Drumpf will eventually be removed from office by Mueller’s investigation. Why join the team that has no hope of winning?

    #TrumpRussia

    1. Given Trump’s record of attracting top talent I have grave doubts about Trump’s ability to recognize top talent. Except maybe in the ass-kissing department.

      1. Possibly also in the ass-spanking department, but who’s to say.

        1. Stormy Daniels?

    2. I, for one, welcome our new ruler Pence from Indiana. My only concern is if Mrs Pence can get a security clearance, otherwise no 1×1 meetings with Angela Mekle.

      1. Not sure Merkel counts as a woman.

  10. U.S. Department of Commerce Announces Reinstatement of Citizenship Question to the 2020 Decennial Census

    ‘n’ th D Chess.

    The lefties love extra questions on the Census forms, so they must decide to answer the question or go against their desire to do what the almighty state wants.

    1. “The lefties love extra questions on the Census forms”

      It sounds like the righties do too. Or are you calling Wilbur a lefty?

      1. That’s why you’re in CHECK. You cannot even see when moves are being used against you.

        1. I always do that prior to wrecking myself.

          1. Your not going to change how you play then?

            Lefties keep making the same bad moves too. Maybe they might learn from their mistakes.

          2. Oh, snap! You got served.

            1. Served? There is no serving in chess. Jesus, do you not even know how to play chess?

              There’s serving in tennis. Serving in volleyball.

      2. Didn’t you see the part about ‘n’ dimensions? Who are we to question the stable genius of Trump’s inscrutable plans for us?

          1. We call those RINOs or neo-cons who are not really Republicans but infiltrating Democrats.

        1. At least a few plans. (1) Trolls the media like no politician that I have ever seen.

          (2) Uses lefty love for government to ask on the Census forms one’s citizenship status.

          1. It’s a foolproof plan really. Immigruntz ain’t smart ’nuff to figger out how to lie on dem der census forms.

            1. Sure they can. I put that there are 100 people that live in my house.

              I smear feces on it and send it in.

              1. I smear feces on it and send it in.

                This is your commenting policy as well.

                1. Bacy-boy, I am not the one who pops in and out of commenting like he’s prairie dogging a case of diarrhea.

              2. Everyone in republican districts should exaggerate their household size on the next census.

    2. The left is hopping mad about this. They prefer to fudge the number of illegals after the census is completed in order to pocket more money for themselves.

    3. I am wondering how Becerra can argue it is unconstitutional.

      Illegals might not answer and, wow, they might have “inaccurate” population totals.

      Do we REALLY need Congressional seats appropriated based on illegals?

      1. Because Becerra argues a lot of stupid shit?

  11. Linda Brown, one of the figures at the center of the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling in Brown v. Board of Education, has died at age 75.

    Board of Education, unfortunately, is still kickin’ it.

    1. If we have learned nothing in the USA, its that the courts were designed by the Founding Fathers to be the most powerful branch of government and force their will on the populace.

      1. No. Not really. The courts are supposed to defer to the other branches. Checks and balances piss people off. Rubber stamps make everyone happy.

        1. I love to discuss how many checks and balances the Constitution requires. I am the life of certain parties.

          1. By “life” you mean “death,” right?

            1. The party keeps going…

              1. All parties die, not all parties truly live.

                1. I have seen some parties come alive.

              2. Party on Wayne!

                1. Party on Garth!

                  #PartyonWayne’sWorld

                  1. In strange eons, even parties may die.

                    1. It’s a dead man’s party, who could ask for more?

                    2. It’s MY party, and i’ll cry if i want to!

                2. Yes, party on Bruce Wayne!

      2. Clearly. There issue wasn’t having a king. It’s that one is too few and his power was too limited.

      3. How many divisions does the Supreme Court have?

        1. They act like they 1 division.

  12. Far-Right Movements Meandering in Global Politics

    Right-wing protest in Thuegida, Germany, an example of the spread of Nazism in the world.

    And strikingly, these demonstrators were not only Polish. Groups from the UK, Sweden, Slovakia, Hungary and Italy attended. The American white supremacist Richard Spencer had been invited to address a conference of nationalists the day before the march, although he failed to attend since he expected he would have been denied entry.

    This increasing international coordination matters not only because it amplifies their voices, but also because these loosely linked movements can serve as gateways to each other. This is part of some groups’ strategies. A report published by the Institute for Strategic Dialogue last year found that radical white nationalist groups aim to use the more moderate far-right groups to “radicalize the normies”.

    https://goo.gl/RRkXc7

    1. You know what other left wing socialist Nazi got the World worked up and demanded action?

        1. My mom’s name is not Eva Braun.

          1. That’s just her nickname. Because she is so willing to bunker down and take discharges into her mouth.

      1. Red Tony’s Yellow Mom?

          1. Nobody needs 23 different kinds of chicken.

            1. Just free range, hormone free, and grass fed.

              1. Deep fried…in LOVE!

                1. Deep fried in motor oil, more likely, since they’re all out of canola by the time you get to the front of the line at the State Grocery Dispensary.

            2. We’d better pull rank and go with General Tso then…

              1. Ten hut!

      2. Tony?

  13. Canadian far right activist who claimed ‘Allah is gay’ gets lifetime ban from coming to the UK

    WTF? Gotta side with the lady on this one.

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/new…..z5AxJGc69n
    Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

    1. Even though she is talking shit about Muslims.

      1. So does Bill Maher. What’s your point, idiot?

        1. I was responding to an idiot.

        2. PB follows Maher
          Imagine that.

    2. Whew! That was close, I almost clicked on the “report spam” button because I thought you finally came out of the closet with who you troll for.

      1. Spamming from The World’s Greatest Newspaper isn’t a crime.

    3. All of that pillaging and raping didn’t make him happy?

  14. Hello again, I’ve been busy.

    Fuck the March for Our Lies, the assholes who organized that bullshit, and all the little ponies they rode in on.

    You know who else thinks being a “victim” gives you moral authority to fuck over a bunch of people who never did a damn thing to you? Mass shooters.

    The marching morons screeching about how much they hate guns always want the rest of us censored and disarmed at gunpoint. Fuck off, slavers.

    1. Who organized those marches? The Illumaniti? The Stone Cutters? The Rothschilds?

      1. Journoooooooooolists and their lefty overlords.

        1. Here’s a good start.

          https://reason.com/tags/gun-control

          Gotta love the new troll who appeared out of nowhere to shit walls of text all over the comments of the Kopel article, and then whine about the formatting. Obviously a passionate grassroots activist who generously donates his time.

          It also replies to an explanation of how statistics work with an anecdote about how it fleeced a bunch of us stem nerds at poker once, or something. I guess that was supposed to be intimidating? “I’m playing 4-D poker while you’re playing math! Checkmate, atheists!”

          1. Those are Volokh conspiracy people. We don’t talk about them.

            1. I left a comment yesterday on one of the Volokh articles. I felt all dirty afterwards.

              1. I can’t even look at you in the face anymore.

                1. Just put a bag over it and do your business!

                  Does my girlfriend have to teach you everything?

      2. The Democratic party blatantly manipulates, astroturfs and funds a bunch of kids marching on Washington for one of their authoritarian agendas and you’re resorting to accusing someone of being a conspiracy theorist for pointing it out?

        1. Yes. Link required or it is pure CT.

        2. The lefties and their media cohorts actually think Americans bought into the narrative that kids organized the gun grabber rallies.

          All I saw was a few kids and a whole bunch of old lefties trying to advocate taking away the fundamental right to keep and bear arms just like they want to silence the 1st Amendment.

        3. So, rather than you pull some shit right out of Wingnut.com I found this:

          https://goo.gl/cb2LsV

          Dozens of donors listed and none were the Democratic Party.

          I don’t know why but wingnuts love CT.

          1. Guess I need more coffee.

            What is “CT”? I’m guessing “crazy talk”, but it could be Connecticut.

            1. Conspiracy Theory.

              Conservatives (wingnuts) are in particular prone to falling for it.

              A famous recent example is Jade Helm.15

              1. Butt: Isn’t Trump being a puppet of Putin a conspiracy theory?

                There is literally zero proof of that yet lefties in droves believe it.

                Must not be what lefties call conspiracy theories for some reason.

                1. Yep. I have progs constantly telling me that Mueller has enough proof to put Trump in prison. When I point out no proof has been presented, no Trump ally accused of actual election wrong doing, and that the original basis for the investigation has been discredited, they reply ‘you don’t know what he has’.

                  But they just “know” he has the proof.

            2. Conspiracy theories?

              I’m sure they’re all wrong. The government never intentionally does bad things and tries to cover them up. After all, they’re here to help!

            3. CT = Conspiracy Theory

              It’s used mostly in dipshit rationalist/skeptic boards to dismiss all their critics as conspiracy theorists.

        4. It’s PB, he’s been eating too much paste again.

          I just read a recent article on this very site discussing the astroturfing of anti-gun groups in detail, but that would require two clicks and basic literacy, so he’s reduced to screeching about conspiracy theorists. Sad.

          1. The belief that a bunch of Bloomberg-funded, small-membership organizations are astroturfing is a conspiracy theory; the fact is that polls show Americans support common-sense gun control, so protesters are obviously grass-roots. What’s astroturfing is the five-million member NRA doing the bidding of a small number of gun manufacturers.

            Carry on, clingers.

            1. Oh I get it, this is another one of those “satire” troll accounts. Almost had me going there.

      3. The kids think they’re gods in a beauty pageant. It’s a narcissistic romp, and it will not end well. I almost feel sorry for them.

        1. They are so unprepared for life. They are going to have a rough time unless they wise up.

          1. I mean, they lived through a shooting so they might be a little more prepared than you think. I couldn’t imagine how I would respond if I was 15 and someone shot up my school while I was there. It’s an interesting empathy experiment.

            1. Hey, why bring a little reason into this?

              I might add – these teens are idealistic and harmless. These “protests” will disappear as quickly as Occupy Wall St did. (Quicker actually).

              And be less effective.

              But wingnuts gotta wingnut!

              1. Emma Gonzales is FUGLY.

                Hey bitch, my rights don’t end where your feelings begin.

            2. I would respond by identifying all the homeschool houses in the community and going to each one and dragging the kids to school with me.

              1. Because kidnapping is fine if you mean well?

                The campaign to demonize homeschooling reveals what the proggie’s actual priorities are. Goodness forbid any kid escape the brainwashing, or they might not have enough drones for the next walkout.

                Fuck off, slaver.

                1. Yes we must demonize homeschooling. Also, autism ‘treatment’, which is really just shooter training.

                2. Is this in response to my comment? I’m not even sure what you are saying so I can’t give you a substantive response.

                  For the record, I don’t condone kidnapping or brainwashing or slaves.

                  1. Not really about your comment in particular.

                    For what it’s worth, my empathy is fine. It just runs out when the “victim” uses their rough childhood as an excuse to mug me.

                    1. Not really about your comment in particular.

                      Can I ask why you hit the “reply to this” button? I get that you want your soap box, but maybe it would be more effective to just create your own comment.

                    2. Welcome to Reason, where the only thing more fucked up than the conversation is the comment system. After a certain point it stops indenting and just puts replies below each other, sometimes in the correct order. Take it up with the server squirrels, not me.

                      And I have more than enough boxes for my soap, thank you very much.

            3. I’ve had a gun pointed at my head.

              Twice.

              Both times by a coked-out lunatic. Same guy both times.

              You get over it.

              1. I’ve had a gun pointed at my head.

                I’ve been robbed by gun point. But I was an adult. It was a very harrowing experience for me and I as I mentioned previously, I couldn’t imagine it happening when I was a teen. Especially if friends or loved ones were killed in the experience.

                1. I was 19 and 20 when it happened. I got over it. Didnt really panic til hours after the fact. Then moved on.

                2. I was 19 and 20 when it happened. I got over it. Didnt really panic til hours after the fact. Then moved on.

              2. I’ve had a railroad cop, a cop cop, and an urban wannabe hunter all take shots at me. If I learned anything it’s to wear appropriate garb for the terrain (camo for the first, black and dark red for the second, and blaze orange for the latter), and to grow up and not get in stupid situations.

                In no case would I define myself as ‘bad’, only stupid. My brother and my friends put me in some hairy situations. I put myself amongst them…

                I’m glad I’m in MN where pellets couldn’t penetrate all the layers of clothing. I’m glad the cop cop wasn’t dirty Harry.

          2. A wave of anti communist sentiment, and blacklists should teach them all a valuable lesson.

    2. The marching morons screeching about how much they hate guns always want the rest of us censored and disarmed at gunpoint. Fuck off, slavers.

      Funny how these people want the cops to be the only ones with guns, yet there is likely an overlap between these knuckleheads and BLM. Talk about cognitive dissonance.

      1. If it weren’t for cognitive dissonance, they’d have no cognition at all.

      2. I also like how they blame everybody EXCEPT the government who was the only group to fail so spectacularly.

    3. Fuck … all the little ponies

      Finally, you tried to keep it a secret but your brony ways are now known.

        1. Hay there.

  15. Not a big fan of Trump but I would still definitely vote for him again if it was a choice between him and a proggie.

    1. I support Gary’s Johnson.

      1. You must be one of those reverse cowboy kind of dudes.

        1. More like a reverse cowgirl kind of dude.

          1. I guess if you can squeeze hard enough, you would technically be “supporting” from above. Right?

            1. I suppose. Give it a try and let me know how it works out for you.

              1. I generally only anally support people who know what Aleppo is. Got to have standards.

                1. I like to have a girl say “Aleppo” as I am getting head. The plosiveness sends me over the edge.

                  1. That’s only if there happens to be a girl there watching.

          2. Never turn your back on family.

          3. Reverse cowgirl is best cowgirl.

            1. Reverse anal cowgirl is the best. FIFY.

  16. “Attorney General Xavier Becerra: Facebook has “broken” our trust”
    […]
    “The letter listed six specific questions for Zuckerberg to answer:
    ? Were those terms of service clear and understandable, or buried in boilerplate where few users would even read them?…”
    https://www.sfchronicle.com/business/article/
    Attorney-General-Xavier-Becerra-Facebook-
    has-12781995.php?cmpid=gsa-sfgate-result

    I can see the new cabinet-level federal agency already.

    1. Dept. of Social Media Security?

    2. The Silicon Valley people all claim to love big government. I suspect justice for once might be served and they are going to get what they want good and hard.

      1. The Silicon Valley people all claim to love big government. I suspect justice for once might be served and they are going to get what they want good and hard.

        Agreed. These CEO’s think the government should regulate everything EXCEPT their businesses.

        Time to dis-abuse them of that notion.

        Just as I want the GOP to stop reflexively opposing all tax hikes. The really rich are Democrats, by and large. Soak the fuck out of them.

        1. Tech CaeO’s also like tech industry tax credits and other giveaways. Just like this big government Hollywood types that want high taxes for everyone else.

          1. ‘CEO’s’

    3. Were those terms of service clear and understandable, or buried in boilerplate where few users would even read them?…

      I trust Attorney General Xavier Becerra will be asking Congress similar questions about, say, the tax code.

      1. It’s different when government does it. EVERYTHING is different when government does it.

        1. Obviously the solution is for Facebook to be made a government agency.

    4. I don’t like seeing ads on my TV either. When are TV executives going to be hauled in front of Congress to explain this travesty?

      1. Putting ads next to your feed is one thing, using your smartphone app to collect call and text metadata and selling it is very much another.

        Not that Congress has grounds to adjudicate, since i’m sure quite a few members of it were among the buyers.

        1. The value of metadata gets smaller every day. The point of advertising is to in some ways gaslight people. Advertising is effective only if it creates a belief in the people who see it. The moment people start seeing it as advertising and not believing it, it no longer works.

          Google made hundreds of billions of dollars on the simple premise that most people are going to go to the first hit they get on the internet when they are looking to buy something. So companies pay to be the first hit. That is all great except that people now know the first hit is the first hit because they paid Google. So, the value of being the top hit is lower all of the time as people realize that the first hit isn’t the best hit and they need to look a bit deeper. There is always going to be some value to being first, but it gets less all of the time. The same is true of all this stuff. People realize that the things they see on Google and Facebook are just advertising and there because the company paid for it and will respond to it less and less over time. Internet advertising, which is all data harvesting is, will get less and less valuable just like TV and radio advertising have.

        2. But the point of all that is to show you ads. I get that people feel “tricked” but really, what the hell were they expecting?

          1. I enjoy looking at ads featuring thin Asian women in bras and panties. I click on them so Facebook keeps on sending them.

            1. Wow, you really don’t know how to be a victim. What do you talk about at parties?

  17. http://www.washingtonpost.com/…..0f10265e1f

    Say it again kids; TRADE WAR!!! It is one thing to believe in the power of free markets and the value of international trade. It is quite another thing to believe that the United States should never act in its own interests the way other nations do and that if it ever does other nations will immediately engage in an apocalyptic trade war rather than negotiate some kind of compromise the way nations do regarding every other issue. To believe that is to either be a religious fanatic who has substituted some fantasy version of the market for God or to be lying because you are on the payroll of the people who benefit from the US never acting in its own interests.

    1. It is quite another thing to believe that the United States should never act in its own interests the way other nations do

      What do you mean by “interest?” Protecting a few jobs at the expense of everyone paying higher prices?

      I think everyone having access to goods at a lower cost is more in the country’s interest than protecting a few thousand jobs.

      Of course those few thousand jobs are easily seen, while the higher prices that everyone pays in order to protect those jobs are not.

      1. No. I mean using the leverage access to our markets creates to force other countries to give us access to their markets. People like those at CATO argue that even unfair trade practices by other countries benefit the US and the US should never under any circumstances engage in similar practices or threaten such to open up markets to our products or deter other nations from engaging in unfair practices.

        And that is just nonsense.

        1. If a foreign government subsidizes the production of widgets, who benefits? I say that consumers benefit because they get widgets at a lower price. Would consumers be better off if they were forced to subsidize the production of their own widgets? I say no. Making things more expensive benefits no one.

          1. Who benefits? consumers. But who says consumers’ interests should always prevail. What about the people who lose their businesses that are otherwise profitable? Their interests matter too.

            1. What about the people who lose their businesses that are otherwise profitable? Their interests matter too.

              mumble mumble buggy whip makers mumble mumble

              1. Except buggy whip makers are not an applicable example. It’s not that these businesses can’t exist anymore because they’ve been replaced by a new technology that has relegated them to irrelevancy.

              2. What about them? Why should their interests always be subservient to the consumers? Answer the question or shut the fuck up and stop wasting my time.

                1. Why should their interests always be subservient to the consumers?

                  Because the purpose of production is consumption. The businessman is always subservient to his customers. Give the customer what they want, or go broke.

                  Answer the question or shut the fuck up and stop wasting my time.

                  I believe I just did.

            2. Because that’s the proper role of government, regulating wage and price controls? lol, nope.

              Don’t let economics harsh your hateboner or anything.

              1. Technically, the Founding Fathers were fine with tariffs. The tariffs were low and government was far more limited than now.

                Additionally, these other countries are not engaging in anything close to free market. It could be said that the USA won’t have anything to trade if our economy is wiped out by a distorted trade balance against the USA.

                I think free trade is the best and any trade war won’t last long. China is fairly dependent on the status quo as that is what the Commie central planners have planned for.

                1. It could be said that the USA won’t have anything to trade if our economy is wiped out by a distorted trade balance against the USA.

                  Please translate that sentence into something I can understand.

                  1. Sure. Countries that purposely undercut an industry in the USA with the intent of putting every US producer and seller of that industry are not playing by the rules that the market sets the price and responds to market signals.

                    Once all the US producers and sellers are out of business, the other country raises its prices.

                    Normally after the prices rise, new US businesses might start to offer lower priced products in that industry.

                    The hostile country does the same thing again.

                    Expand that to multiple industries until an economy is ravaged. Since in order to be a buyer, one has to have wealth how would you obtain wealth if other countries are purposely trying to destroy your economy.

                    That is not free market. You want the USA to play by rules that few countries play by.

                  2. You would think this runs counter-intuitive to common sense, since if you destroy an economy how will those people buy your stuff.

                    We are talking about hostile countries that use central planners who think their planning is better than free market to give their country the advantage.

                    I am not an advocate that the USA must have manufacturing to be a great economy. I am saying that free market still has rules to play by and if all the parties are not playing by the rules, someone is at a disadvantage right from the start.

            3. no one’s interests should matter to the government.

              they should not be pro-business, pro-labor, nor pro-consumer.

              this isn’t that hard.

              1. So no expansion of roads to make trade more efficient?

                So no US Navy to protect US shipping interests and let pirates pillage?

            4. John, libertarians never give a shit about people who lose their livelihood.

    2. The Art of the Deal: Part Deux

      1. The Cheeto strikes back!

    3. To believe that is to either be a religious fanatic who has substituted some fantasy version of the market for God

      If you’re expecting religious fanatics to recognize and admit that they are such, you’re sadly mistaken. Don’t get me wrong, I actually agree with this characterization, and it is part of what has driven me away from libertarianism.

      “We are 100% rational. Now accept the Gospel of our prophets and worship the Free Market!”

      1. “We are 100% rational. Now accept the Gospel of our prophets and worship the Free Market!”

        I agree with this wholeheartedly. I liken the free market argument to Church Hills Democracy quote:

        “Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others.”

        ? Winston S. Churchill

        There are some pretty dangerous negatives to a total free market. I just know they’re not as dangerous as the alternatives.

        1. I have more respect for strict Libertarians in this regard than I do for Libertarian-leaning conservatives. Strict Libertarians start out with the assumption that individual freedom is the ultimate end of government and then live with the consequences. That Libertarians support people being free to do nearly anything. I might disagree with them on that, but there is no denying the internal consistency and integrity of their position.

          Libertarian-leaning conservatives, however, are no such thing. When it is something they like, for example, free trade and access to cheap consumer goods, they are all about being Libertarian and appealing to their principles as a way of depriving opposing positions of moral legitimacy and avoiding the need to defend their own position. But when it comes to things they don’t like, say drugs or gambling or export controls on national defense assets, then they are all about competing values and the need to restrain human freedom. They are conservatives who are too dim witted to defend their positions or make them consistent and see libertarianism as a tool to avoid having to do that. I hold them in nearly as much contempt as I do Progressives.

          1. I hold them in nearly as much contempt as I do Progressives.

            I think you should give them the benefit of the doubt. They’re half way there! Whereas Progressives are just plain evil.

            1. “Progressives are just plain evil.”

              Good. Now you’re getting it. The next step is realizing that they don’t go away in their own. Then figuring out a plan to rid ourselves of them.

      2. The judgment of the market is like the judgment of God. And overall efficiency is the ultimate good to be pursued at the expense of all others.

        People treat the market like some magic machine that gives the ideal result if only it is left alone. No, the laws of the market are just descriptions of mass behavior. It just tells you what results occur from different policies. It says nothing about the relative merits of those results. The merits of the results are a value question. And not something economics can answer. But, they act like it can.

        1. People treat the market like some magic machine that gives the ideal result if only it is left alone.

          Way to bludgeon a straw man. No one makes that claim. The claim is that free markets give better results than markets governed by force. Better. Not perfect.

          What’s that quote about democracy? That it is a shitty form of government, but better than the known alternatives? Same idea.

          1. What makes it better? I never said that people claimed that it gave the perfect result. Only the ideal result, which means best. Why is the result of the market better? Economics doesn’t answer that question.

            1. Why is the result of the market better? Economics doesn’t answer that question.

              “Better for who” is the question.

              Free market proponents say that the result is better because it is what the consumer wants. After all, the purpose of production is consumption.

              Free market opponents say that their way is better because it benefits producers. For them, the purpose of production is jobs. Consumers be damned.

              1. Why is the consumer the ultimate good? You don’t get wealthy by consuming. You express your wealth by consuming. You get wealthy by producing. We are only as wealthy as the total amount of goods and services we produce. Consuming more doesn’t change that.

                1. What is wealth?

                2. What is value? Do goods and services not have value? If they have value, then those who consume them are consuming value. Their lives are richer as a result.

                  Or do you think you’d be better off if you sold all your assets except the clothes on your back and a suitcase, stuffed the suitcase with the money from the sale of your wealth, and then slept on a park bench?

                  After all, you’d be rich! You’d have all that money, and no worthless consumption goods!

        2. There’s a reason that Smith described those who become obsessed with the accumulation of money as insane when he wrote Wealth of Nations. It really is a mania. I mean, if it floats your boat, by all means, but demanding all of society must adhere to your efficiency obsession is just ridiculous.

          Some things are likely best left to the “market” or as you pointed out, to the decisions of the population at large. In fact, most likely are. But most of this is going to come down to value judgements, and the question of what is in the best interests of the nation (or individual communities even).

          For example, sure, volunteer firefighter districts are far more efficient than having professional, full-time divisions. But the second option is far more effective, and it may be beneficial to a community to pay people full-time, especially as the community becomes larger.

          1. Now apply that to other fields. Let’s give the example of steel production. Large empires need to be self-reliant on the goods necessary to turn the wheels of their military, in order to maintain the empire. Steel is a serious need for that today, and so being reliant on the rest of the world for it is not good in the event of a conflict between another large power, especially if that power is the source of your steel.

            When the day comes for a conflict with the Chinese–and that day will come, like it or not–it will be a sad day for us, and even sadder if we cannot produce the necessary goods to win. So, making sure you have a thriving steel production in your nation may be in the national interest. It will be far less efficient than relying on outside sources that are subsidized to be cheap, but it comes with a bonus that isn’t easily measured in simple dollars.

            1. That is a very good summation of what I am talking about. There are other interests beyond efficiency and wealth. If the day comes where we no longer can have a national defense without relying on other nations to supply it, we will be at those nations’ mercy.

              The thing about people at CATO and Reason and National Review who espouse this nonsense is that none of them ever do anything but benefit from the policies they promote. It is always someone else’ job to suffer for their principles. What we did in the last 40 years was walk away from being a manufacturing economy in large measure to being a service sector economy. That is great if you are in the service sector or cut out for such. Not so great if you are not. What never dawns on the people at CATO and Reason is that the decision to adopt trade policies that produced those results was just as much of a central planning decision as deciding the opposite. They just liked the results and point to the market as some kind of moral validation for it. If a mad dictator took over and decided America was going to manufacture and all of the eggheads at Reason and CATO need to learn to be welders, they would rightly think he was insane. Yet, they did the same thing and told the welders to become eggheads and think it is great. Because TRADE WAR!! or something.

              1. The thing about people at CATO and Reason and National Review who espouse this nonsense is that none of them ever do anything but benefit from the policies they promote.

                It is entirely within the realm of possibility that these people might have friends or family that work for, say, New Balance, which would go broke if not for the government taxing people who buy shoes make in other countries. Yet in principle these people would oppose tariffs on shoes.

                It is always someone else’ job to suffer for their principles.

                Who suffers when government uses force to alleviate suffering?

                What we did in the last 40 years was walk away from being a manufacturing economy in large measure to being a service sector economy.

                We manufacture more stuff than ever before. What we don’t do is employ as many people in that sector as before. Why? Automation. But the USA is still a manufacturing powerhouse.

                The rest of your post is garbage. Word salad. Nothing coherent.

                1. We could manufacture a lot more. And a lot fewer people work in the field. We are a service sector economy. That was by design. You can think it was a good idea. But that is what it was.

                  1. We are a service sector economy. That was by design.

                    That’s the first I ever heard about that. The by design part.

                    I look at it this way. If it’s cheaper to buy shit than to make it, what do you do? Oh, I know! Services!

                    The fact that we are a service oriented economy only shows how rich we are. It’s something to celebrate, not lament.

                    1. I don’t buy cheap shit. Cheap shit tends not to be of good quality, so I need to spend more to have whatever that thing is.

                      An example is my can opener. I paid $50 for it. It has never rusted nor not worked as designed. I used to buy the cheap can openers for $7 or less. They rusted and stopped working within a few years, so I needed to buy another.

                      Free market is best but we also live in a World with Communists running China and numerous peoples who literally want to wipe America off the map.

                      Often times there are more variables to trade between peoples than how cheap something is.

                    2. Let us not forget it was and continues to be the central planners who have made it far more difficult and expensive to manufacture goods in the US. Do I need to furnish the laundry list of such difficulties:

                      (1) Minimum wage laws;

                      (2) OSHA;

                      (3) EPA;

                      (4) The Workers’ Comp regime;

                      (5) The anti-discrimination regime;

                      (6) The FTC;

                      (7) The income taxation of businesses;

                      (8) The imposition of sales taxes;

                      (9) Obamacare; and

                      (10) Anti-trust

                      Of course, we can’t forget all of the regulations added to the Federal Register each and every year, including last year under President Trump. Spare me the refrain that he added fewer regulations than the Kenyan – the fact is that there were regulations added.

                      All of the above come at a cost. Perhaps the protectionists should work on eliminating or reducing those before looking to the central planners to bail them out.

                    3. Yup. The USA is at a huge disadvantage based on the government regulations you mentioned.

                    4. But, I agree with you that cheap is not better… it usually means inferior. Your can opener is a good example.

        3. John, I submit that it is about being Free to Choose more than it is about overall efficiency.

          1. For libertarians, sure. But most people are not strict libertarians. The only remember the free to choose stuff when it is something they like.

            1. As an aside, how to measure overall efficiency is a subject onto itself.

              1. Efficiency mostly ends up being a proxy for cost when it comes to the goods produced, and as several people have pointed out above, cost is only one factor when determining what someone values in a good.

                You can make fidget-spinners at 100% efficiency by every measure, and I still won’t buy one because it isn’t something I want.

                Conversely, I burn through fleece outerwear at amazing rates, regardless of whether it’s North Face or K-Mart blue-light specials. For me, the latter is the preferred good, and it breaks my heart that K-Mart wasn’t better at competing.

          2. Agreed. I don’t care if more government power over the economy makes the trains run on time.

            Same with most things they do, really. Even if I thought things like gun control or hate speech laws would work as advertised (I don’t) i’d still oppose them on moral grounds.

            1. We know almost all of the empirical evidence demonstrates that the trains will not run on time if the government is in charge.

              1. Well, not our government. If the culture puts a lot value on punctuality – unlike the US – even a government-run train will be on time.

                1. They were not always on time under Stalin or Hitler or Mussolini. Of course, if you believe communist / fascist propaganda, you would disagree.

                  If, like me, you visited the Soviet Union under Chernenko and Gorby, you would know that they did not always run on time.

      3. Free markets are not perfect. No one has made that claim.

        However they are a lot better than managed markets. Mainly because free markets can quickly change and adapt, being that they are nothing more than people engaging in mutually beneficial, voluntary exchange. As soon as governments use force to substitute the whims of bureaucrats for the choices of free market actors, everything seems to go to shit.

        If anyone is engaging in deification, it is the protectionists. Because they believe that the use of government force by angelic bureaucrats can magically create better outcomes than free people acting in their own interest.

        1. You constantly accuse me of making a straw man and then act like the two alternatives are a completely free market and a completely managed market. That is a straw man. There are degrees of management and no market is ever entirely free. So, the question is just how unfree should the market be. And pretending that the choices are “free” or completely managed doesn’t answer that question. it is just engaging in the straw man fallacy, the very same thing you constantly accuse everyone else of doing. It is also begging the question. And it is really tiresome.

          1. The straw man I accuse you of is that proponents of free markets believe that free markets make no mistakes, and that the outcome is always wine and roses.

            Nobody claims that. We who support liberty simply believe that people engaging in voluntary exchange create better outcomes than people needing to ask permission and obey orders before engaging in exchange.

            As far as management goes, free marketers who are not anarchists recognize that there is a role for government to play. Mainly in enforcing property rights, contracts, and providing courts for resolving disputes without resorting to violence. But that’s it. Let the markets choose the winners and losers.

            1. For the fifth fucking time, that is not my position. Go back and read the thread again and make a sensible response or shut up. Proponents of the free market think it gives the best result. Best is not perfect. Stop wasting my time. Either figure out what is going on or if you have, make an honest point. All you do is create strawmen and then project that habit onto everyone else.

              1. I think I’ve addressed your point more than once.

                1. Sarcasmic, you have John’s position wrong.

                  John is saying there are other variables in trade rather than just getting cheap shit.

                  Its not free trade in a vacuum but in the real World. Sometimes buying the cheapest shit is not the choice that people make.

          2. Therefore, let us examine each and every question.

            Let’s take steel.

            Should the thousands of companies which use steel in the manufacturing and production of their products be free to choose from whom they should buy steel?

            Should the thousands of companies which use steel in the manufacturing and production of their goods be forced to pay an artificially imposed higher price for the steel they purchase from foreign suppliers?

            Should the proponents of steel protectionism be assailed for failing to furnish hard-core, irrefutable proof that such protections are in the best interest of everybody, including the millions of consumers who will be forced to pay for higher prices on finished goods and the thousands of companies who use steel in the production of their goods, or should they be allowed to skate upon a generalized, undifferentiated assertion that the national interest is better served by the imposition of tariffs by central planners?

            1. Are the consumers of steel more important that the makers? I don’t know. But you are right Mike, that is the question. Both sides have legitimate interests.

              1. Are the consumers of steel more important that the makers?

                Yes.

                Both sides have legitimate interests.

                So did the buggy whip makers.

                1. Sarcasamic, there are two sides to any trade transactions. The sellers (sometimes the makers) and the buyers.

    4. I’ll just wait and see if Trump is able to leverage this into decent trade deals. Anything is possible.

      He negotiated real estate in NYC. How hard can it be to negotiate with China?

      1. Maybe he’ll have the city steal China and sell it to him cheap.

      2. I dunno, ask the British about the opium wars.

        1. “Look, we know opium is harmful to people, so I have an idea for getting opium-users to switch to something healthier…Jeff has all this confiscated dope that he doesn’t know what to do with…we can sell it to you at a reasonable price – we’ll scarcely make any profit at all…”

    5. Our daily reminder that John is retarded. “Comparative advantage” is too complicated for him to understand.

  18. Stormy Daniels kept dress from Donald Trump date, friend says
    Carolyn McAtee Cerbin USA Today

    A blue dress no doubt.

    1. Well, 12 years later, it is more likely to blue and a yellowish / whitish.

    2. What’s with women who sleep with presidents not being able to keep tidy?

      1. Sleep? Who can sleep with all that spanking going on!

        1. Maybe that *magazine cover* has the damning DNA on it!

      2. “I’ll never wash down there again!”

  19. …the president’s difficulty in attracting top legal talent to represent him in the probe.

    Maybe he’ll have to go with a public pretender. Or represent himself. That would at least be entertaining.

    1. “I’m your court-appointed theatrical agent…”

  20. Alright, which one of you assholes was this?

    According to court documents, Godwin filed a lawsuit against the federal government because he believed the Controlled Substance Act was not enforced.

    The document states: “Know your facts! I am a natural born conservative. Read the Federal law on marijuana. President Nixon ignored the Federal law on marijuana. Marijuana has been altering the minds of the American people since the early 60’s. Check my facts! This is the FACT!”

    1. Guys in custody. Its anyone who doe snot respond in the next day.

      Not it!

      1. I notice Simple Mikey hasn’t been around today…

  21. Linda Brown, one of the figures at the center of the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling in Brown v. Board of Education, has died at age 75.

    And yet, she lived long enough to read this editorial.

    Washington Post editorial

    At AU, African American and other students demanded a “sanctuary space” be established for minority students at a campus cafeteria; a policy granting extensions for final exams to minority students; and an open-door policy for outside groups such as the NAACP to investigate hate crimes and racial incidents at the university.

    Eager to ease tensions, administrators granted those demands, and have gone the extra mile, or miles, by agreeing to additional nighttime patrols and racial-sensitivity training for students; offering a $1,000 reward for information that helps to identify the banana vandal, whose blurry image appears on security camera videos; and contracting with a prominent historian of American race relations, Ibram Kendi, to set up an anti-racism center on campus.

    That’s a smart, proactive agendaM, one that might serve as a blueprint for other universities facing similar problems.

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