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How to Go From Government Shutdown to National Emergency in Just Two Weeks: Reason Roundup

Plus: Congress forgets to fund the First Step Act, The New York Times chastises smug politicians over Amazon, and what if the U.S. were 100 city-states?

Paul Boucher/ZUMA Press/NewscomPaul Boucher/ZUMA Press/NewscomWhat the hell is happening today? In another timeline, the swearing in of new Attorney General William Barr would be the biggest politics story yesterday. Instead, it could barely compete with the cacophony of extremely pricey temper tantrums coming from the White House and the weary, shutdown-stung dealmaking in Congress. ("A surreal, discordant day," The New York Times called it.) Today, President Donald Trump is set to sign the $1.375 billion appropriations bill Congress approved yesterday. He also will reportedly declare a national emergency over the delusional melodrama he fancies is happening on the U.S.–Mexico border. The declaration would loosen up $3.5 billion from the Department of Defense to go toward constructing Trump's border wall.

Any such declaration would be at least be temporarily blocked by a federal court. But what could happen in the longer term is unclear. (See Joe Setyon's post here yesterday for more details.) According to ABC News, the Justice Department is telling Trump not to do it.

So are a lot of fellow Republicans, although reliable sycophants like Sen. Lindsey Graham (R–S.C.) are gung-ho. More importantly, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said he would support the declaration.

Here's a good primer on national emergencies and what presidents can do during them, from the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University law school. It found "the president has access to emergency powers contained in 123 statutory provisions," as the center's Elizabeth Goitein explains in The Atlantic:

While many of these tee up reasonable responses to genuine emergencies, some appear dangerously suited to a leader bent on amassing or retaining power. For instance, the president can, with the flick of his pen, activate laws allowing him to shut down many kinds of electronic communications inside the United States or freeze Americans' bank accounts. Other powers are available even without a declaration of emergency, including laws that allow the president to deploy troops inside the country to subdue domestic unrest.

This edifice of extraordinary powers has historically rested on the assumption that the president will act in the country's best interest when using them. With a handful of noteworthy exceptions, this assumption has held up. But what if a president, backed into a corner and facing electoral defeat or impeachment, were to declare an emergency for the sake of holding on to power? In that scenario, our laws and institutions might not save us from a presidential power grab. They might be what takes us down.

All of this sums up nicely why the presidency should never have been given so much power in the first place. In any event, national emergency declarations are common, but they usually have at least some tie to actual emergencies. From USA Today:

After the terrorist attacks in 2001, President George W. Bush signed an order giving him broad powers. A subsequent executive order, signed in November of that year, activated the same law the White House may be considering now for the wall—a provision that allowed the president to redirect military construction money for other purposes.

In 2009, President Barack Obama declared a state of national emergency for the H1N1 swine flu pandemic. That emergency, which expired a year later, allowed for waivers of some Medicare and Medicaid regulations—for example, permitting hospitals to screen or treat an infectious illness off-site—and to waive medical privacy laws.

Meanwhile, in Congress, the negotiation bill (intended to avoid another government shutdown) failed to include promised funding for criminal justice reform initiatives. Eric Boehm explains:

The FIRST STEP Act authorized $75 million in spending annually from fiscal year 2019 (the current fiscal year) through fiscal year 2023, with most of that funding directed to the federal Bureau of Prisons, which is part of the Department of Justice. It was widely assumed that funding would be included in the omnibus bill now before Congress—the most high-profile element of which is funding for President Donald Trump's border wall—but there is no explicit funding for the FIRST STEP Act included in the bill.

The omission is particularly glaring since President Donald Trump had highlighted the passage of the bill just 10 days ago at the State of the Union address. Among the White House's guests for the occasion was Alice Johnson, whose story, Trump said, "underscores the disparities and unfairness that can exist in criminal sentencing—and the need to remedy this injustice."

FREE MARKETS

Smug anti-corporate sloganeering doesn't pay bills. The New York Times editorial board chastises smug New York politicians over their gloating that Amazon will no longer build a headquarters in Queens. "There were all sorts of problems with the deal New York cut to bring Amazon to the city, and Amazon is no paragon, but its abrupt withdrawal was a blow to New York, which stood to gain 25,000 jobs and an estimated $27 billion in tax revenue over the next two decades. This embarrassment to the city presents a painful lesson in how bumper-sticker slogans and the hubris of elected—and corporate—officials can create losers on all sides." It notes that "polls showed wide support for Amazon's move to Queens," but elected officials seemed more keen to use Amazon in inequality talking points than have "a constructive conversation about how to improve the deal and make it work for the tech giant and the city."

QUICK HITS

  • This is a fun:
  • "Jessica Rosenworcel, a member of the Federal Communications Commission, does not like TV and radio ads for e-cigarettes, and she seems to think they can be banned by reinterpreting the 1970 law that prohibited broadcast ads for conventional cigarettes," reports Reason's Jacob Sullum. "She is wrong."
  • "While it's very unlikely that Weld (or anyone else, for that matter) is going to beat Trump in the totality of the 2020 primary contest, or even grab a substantial number of delegates, Weld running as the anti-Trump Republican might not be as stupid a move as a lot of people seem to think," writes Liz Mair.

Photo Credit: Paul Boucher/ZUMA Press/Newscom

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  • Fist of Etiquette||

    What the hell is happening today?

    TV ACTOR HOAX OR NO HOAX

  • Rich||

    HATE CRIME OR HATE CRIME

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Hater crime?

  • Rich||

    DOUBLE HATE CRIME!!

  • ||

    Hello.

    "There is a financial literacy epidemic in America."

    I hadn't noticed.

    Don't feel bad. It's horrific up here too.

    Nothing like listening to an illiberal, ignorant 25 year-old activist student talk stupidly about finance and taxes.

  • Bee Tagger||

    There isn't a $3 billion pile of money that can now be spent on subways or education.

    start printing your own money. rumor has it that it will solve all of those questions of how do we pay for this.

  • Conchfritters||

    Amazon Cuomo hardest hit.

  • damikesc||

    Our Weimar Democrats are historical geniuses

  • Leo Kovalensky II||

    Or... *GASP* simply, NOT spent.

  • some guy||

    Kill the non-believer!

  • OpenBordersLiberal-tarian||

    More bad economic news.

    U.S. Jobless Claims Unexpectedly Rise After Shutdown Ends

    #DrumpfRecession
    #UnbanPalinsButtplug

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    There is a financial literacy epidemic in America.

    Quick lesson: NYC wasn't handing cash to Amazon. It was an incentive program based on job creation, producing tax revenue.

    There isn't a $3 billion pile of money that can now be spent on subways or education.
    — Andrew Ross Sorkin (@andrewrsorkin) February 14, 2019

    Challenge accepted!

  • loveconstitution1789||

  • Ray McKigney||

    There are several national emergencies ongoing from President Barack Obama. They include the order "Blocking the Property of Certain Persons Engaging in Significant Malicious Cyber-Enabled Activities."

    Suddenly Trump seems pretty normal.

  • KevinP||

    So the continued influx of 500,000 anti-libertarian illegal aliens every year, year after year, who are net consumers of public spending, and future voters for the Democratic Socialists of America are not a national emergency?

  • Mcgoo95||

    No more than any other issue people are obsessed with e.g. climate change, healthcare, gun control. Be careful what you wish for, you might get it.

  • Tu­lpa||

    Be careful what you stupidly lump together, ignoring explicit legal protection.

  • ||

    It was funny to hear democrats try and adopt the libertarian or 3rd party "You first, then me." criticism. How it doesn't come across as "If you think this idea is bad when Trump does it, just wait until *we* get ahold of it." I'll never understand. Might as well hang a sign that says "Pure fucking evil." around your neck and openly admit that your policies are explicitly corrosive to liberty and the American way of life.

  • bevis the lumberjack||

    Something that has been going on for more than a century can't, by definition, be an emergency.

    @Mcgoo - they love it when a president they support abuses his power and hate it when a president they oppose abuses their power. Seems like there's a word for that...…...

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Poor bevis doesnt understand how the constitution works.

  • Bee Tagger||

    All of this sums up nicely why the presidency should never have been given so much power in the first place.

    "been given" vs "taken"
    seems a good time for spooner's quote: "But whether the Constitution really be one thing, or another, this much is certain - that it has either authorized such a government as we have had, or has been powerless to prevent it. In either case, it is unfit to exist."

  • This Machine Chips Fascists||

    There's a school of thought that no one alive today had anything to do with constructing or approving the US constitution and are not bound to it by any real principle other than inertia. It seems those at the top of the power structure have taken that to heart.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Now that trump got Congress to approve money for border fencing he can argue in court that "this border security issue is so important, even Congress appropriated money"

  • Sometimes a Great Notion||

    But that would negate his argument that its an emergency. Unless you think the government not spending enough of our money is an emergency. Pretty proggie argument which you wouldn't want held up in court when the dems take office. I would love to see your take if Obama did it to fund Obamacare. Congress didn't give me what I want so I am declaring an emergency is pretty much throwing out our entire constitution.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    You dont even see Trumps moves ahead of time do you?

  • Bee Tagger||

    the Justice Department is telling Trump not to do it.

    25 times in fact, IF TRUMP CATCHES THEIR DRIFT

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    They don't know that Pence has an emergency wall declaration at the ready but which is designed to keep out the gays and the temptresses.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Funny how some people hate that Pence refuses to let his political enemies trap him with "she said" situations.

    Trump is living proof though, that you can slam ass all over town and survive politically.

  • Bearded Spock||

    "MACA" -- Make America Celibate Again

  • Conchfritters||

    Yeah, Trump is totally going to listen to the Justice Department, who told the asst. AG to wear a wire when he met the President, because Trump is an undercover KGB agent, or something.

  • This Machine Chips Fascists||

    I wonder what Russian with a Queens accent sounds like. Nekulturny?

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    This embarrassment to the city presents a painful lesson in how bumper-sticker slogans and the hubris of elected—and corporate—officials can create losers on all sides.

    Sometimes they need to be slapped across the face with the consequences of their daily bullshit.

  • Longtorso, Johnny||

    How 'dozens' of jihadi brides want to return home: UK taxpayers could face enormous costs in repatriating the women back from Syria as ISIS falls apart
    Shamima Begum wants to come home despite 'no regrets' about time in Syria
    If the 19-year-old makes it across borders to a British consulate, she can return
    The Daily Mail understands dozens more jihadi brides are poised to come back
    UK taxpayers could face enormous costs in repatriating all the different women
    They will need to be kept under surveillance as well as being given protection

    Home Secretary Sajid Javid said last night he would use all available powers to prevent Begum from returning to the UK, while security sources told The Times she would be treated as a 'national security threat' if she returned to British soil. But if Begum, 19, makes it across borders to a British consulate, officials will have little choice but to allow her home so the NHS can care for her baby.

  • Rich||

    if Begum, 19, makes it across borders to a British consulate, officials will have little choice but to allow her home so the NHS can care for her baby.

    "Tag! You're blood well IT!"

    Home Secretary Sajid Javid said last night he would use all available powers to prevent Begum from returning to the UK, while security sources told The Times she would be treated as a 'national security threat' if she returned to British soil.

    Unfortunate if she were to have an accident on the way "home".

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    A country that wasn't thoroughly emasculated would just execute these bitches.

  • Bearded Spock||

    For the past half century American movie-goers have been sold the idea that Her Majesty's Government has been blessed with a superb intelligence apparatus that can easily (and fashionably) whack any bad guy on the planet.

    Now we discover that they can't even keep pregnant teenage girls out of the country.

  • OpenBordersLiberal-tarian||

    Finally some good news.

    Democrats Are Putting Gun Control Front and Center

    This country desperately needs common sense gun violence prevention legislation. And as longtime libertarian activist Michael Hihn has explained, it would be entirely constitutional. A ban on deadly military style assault weapons would be a good start.

  • Rich||

    This country desperately needs common sense gun violence prevention legislation.

    Why stop there, OBL? How about legislation to prevent *all* violence? Let's make things like assault and murder *crimes*!

  • Leo Kovalensky II||

    Needs more bold face in his honor.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    We'll see if he sets up another burner email account for a sockpuppet. Usually he goes through a manic shitposting episode after not appearing for several weeks.

  • Tu­lpa||

    It must suck getting banned.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    "While it's very unlikely that Weld (or anyone else, for that matter) is going to beat Trump in the totality of the 2020 primary contest, or even grab a substantial number of delegates, Weld running as the anti-Trump Republican might not be as stupid a move as a lot of people seem to think," writes Liz Mair.

    Where Schultz was pilloried, look for Weld to be talked up.

  • damikesc||

    Nobody can generate buzz as much as a milquetoast liberal Republican who swore --- TRULY and deeply --- that he was totally a Libertarian just last year.

    Funny how this magazine was taking him seriously when the readers were mocking them for it...

  • loveconstitution1789||

    We mock Reason about Amash too and look what he did for yesterday's Congressional budget vote- PRESENT.

  • Bearded Spock||

    Libertarians in general -- and Reason in particular -- are suckers for politicians who tell them what they want to hear.

    Weld is an internet cam girl and Reason is the poor incel who went 200K in debt just to see boobs.

  • This Machine Chips Fascists||

    Libertarians are so far out of power, who can blame the media sect for grasping at every fleeting libertarian moment? Sure, it's transient, but it keeps their head above water for another day.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Amazon ruins the communities it takes over — NY state senator defends stopping NYC deal

    Trump is gonna win by even more than 304 to 227 Electoral votes on election 2020. Democrats are publicly saying that Amazon is taking over and business ruins communities.

  • damikesc||

    I don't love Amazon --- but if you think getting "less taxes than you deserve" is better than getting "no taxes whatsoever", then you are too stupid for words.

  • ||

    There is a financial literacy epidemic in America.

    FFS, everything is a crisis.

    No, Andrew, you dipshit. The overwhelming majority of humanity has always been financially illiterate. Forever.

  • ||

    It doesn't have to be. You can easily teach the basics in the, you know, public school system they so damn love.

    Easily. We had a class in high school called 'Business and Law'. It was considered a throw away class but in reality, it was the most important one. In there, we learned what holding shares in a company entailed (practically and philosophically), basic bond calculations, how law works in finance and business etc.

  • ||

    Sure. And you and three other people actually retained enough to carry that knowledge forward.

    I don't think it's really an education system failing. It could be better. But people who don't like numbers don't do well with them, regardless of education. And that's a lot of people.

    Everyone in DC has a fancy education. And they're universally financially illiterate (with the exception of knowing quite well how to extract money from other people's pockets).

  • ||

    I agree with this sentiment. But at least EXPOSE them to it. FFS, they're teaching kids transgender BS so why not how to read a balance sheet while in drag?

  • Mr. Tibbs||

    There is plenty useful information about economics and business that doesn't involve numbers. But we teach none of it. All we teach is how big corporations ruin the environment, etc.

  • Longtorso, Johnny||

    Governor Ralph Northam: Virginians Are Going to Have To Work Very Hard to Make Amends For That Thing I Did That I'm Claiming I Didn't Do At All
    "It's obvious from what happened this week that we still have a lot of work to do. There are still some very deep wounds in Virginia, and especially in the area of equity," he said. "There are ongoing inequities to access to things like education, health care, mortgages, capital, entre­pre­neur­ship. And so this has been a real, I think, an awakening for Virginia. It has really raised the level of awareness for racial issues in Virginia. And so we're ready to learn from our mistakes."

  • Ray McKigney||

    This is like when Weinstein responded to sexual-assault claims by saying he was going to focus his energy on gun control.

  • damikesc||

    Why do Americans so frequently let Democrats down?

    "I wouldn't have dressed up in blackface if it wasn't for AMERICA!!!"

    As I noted earlier this week, his inability to blame himself for any of this is impressive.

  • ||

    When a sexual harassment accusation against Trudeau proved true, he said 'WE ALL needed to learn from this'.

    Er, don't put me in your shithead bed asshole. YOU and YOU alone must account for it.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Please take the mouse out of your pocket Governor.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Top US admiral in Middle East warns of growing Iranian threat
    (sorry for it being CNN)

    More to the story but most of it is beating of war drums.

  • Rich||

    elected officials seemed more keen to use Amazon in inequality talking points than have "a constructive conversation about how to improve the deal"

    Well, which approach seemed more likely to get them re-elected?

  • loveconstitution1789||

    NY politicians really misjudged where Amazon was on the Intersectionality chart.

  • Cyto||

    I liked AOC's victory lap - she said she was glad they pulled the project to create 25,000 jobs at that location because now they could use the $3 billion in tax incentives (more than offset by $25 billion in additional tax revenue) that were offered to.... create a whole bunch of jobs...

    Just... dang...

  • loveconstitution1789||

    At this rate, Trump is going to grab all but a few states on Election 2020.

  • Leo Kovalensky II||

    If nothing else he's mostly keeping his campaign promises. The biggest one he hasn't delivered on is deficit reduction, but we know that nobody is going to call him out on that from either side.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    He did crush it in the midterms.

  • Cyto||

    Funny!

    They were yuuuuuge! Yuge midterms. The best.

  • Nardz||

    Everybody Trump campaigned for won.
    Ryan, little bitch that he is, tanked the house

  • Crusty Juggler||

    He barely won his election, he got crushed in the midterms, his approval ratings are almost always the same, and he inspires absolute hatred in his opponents, but sure he is going to breeze through another victory in two years.

    The Democrats are trash so he could certainly win again, but to believe it will be easy is sycophantic nonsense.

  • Cyto||

    Look, I loudly proclaimed that he would not get one single vote in the primaries. This was in response to polling that showed him doing well early on. I said, no way is a single Republican voter ever going to pull the lever for that idiot once they actually enter the voting booth and it really counts. Polls are one thing... But he'll never get a single vote.

    Boy, was I wrong. Not only did he win, but he spent only half of what his opponent spent in the general... the gap was even worse in the primaries.

    To say that there is a lot that we don't understand about the Trump phenomenon would be the understatement of the century.

    He seems to me to be a particularly rude and dumb version of the "Being There" character Chance Gardener. But things keep moving in the direction he wants them to move, even when I can't figure out how his doing something stupid and annoying ended up working.

    At some point I'm going to have to consider that there really might be a genius behind the monkeyshines.

  • Tu­lpa||

    "he got crushed in the midterms"

    He was running in the midterms?

  • loveconstitution1789||

    The midterms are a reflection of Trump's presidency... /Lefty prediction

    The GOP adding 4 Senate seats is NOT a reflection of Trump's Presidency... /lefty narrative

  • This Machine Chips Fascists||

    Aren't her 15 minutes up? Trump must be stretching the timeline in order to profit politically from this young lady's gross inexperience. This can not stand! At long last Mr. President, have you no decency? None at all?

  • Longtorso, Johnny||

  • $park¥ is the Worst||

    Is this one of those times that "sources say" is legit?

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Yes, because it favors my theory.

  • Cyto||

    "Sources say" was good enough for guys wearing MAGA hats. And for cracked ribs. And for yelling "MAGA Country". And for having a noose and bleach handy. And for the entire story for the first day. Initial national coverage was based on twitter traffic, followed up shortly thereafter by a police statement.

    But for some strange reason, multiple "Detectives working the case" is not a good enough source for the national news. Some local station really screwed up publishing this story. It might turn out to be wrong... or even fake!

  • $park¥ is the Worst||

    I can only hope that the dude gets what's coming to him. However, at best they'll write it off as not finding enough evidence and it will fade into nothingness. At worst, it will be another fake but accurate account that for one reason or another everybody has to learn from. If undeniable proof that this is a hoax comes out, the story will just disappear and nothing bad will come of it. If it is a hoax, every gay person, every black person, and every gay black person should want to clean the guy's clock for giving everyone else one more reason to not believe actual assaults.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    This edifice of extraordinary powers has historically rested on the assumption that the president will act in the country's best interest when using them. With a handful of noteworthy exceptions, this assumption has held up.

    For better or for worse, the country's best interest (insomuch as it collectively has one) is in the eye of the beholder.

  • Conchfritters||

    What would the US look like as 100 citystates? I made a map!

    What time is the D&D game tonight, nerd?

  • Ska||

    That comment is really unfair to only a handful of D&D players.

  • $park¥ is the Worst||

    It's tomorrow night.

  • Bearded Spock||

    Are there going to be any women present?

  • $park¥ is the Worst||

    Not this week, next week there will be.

  • ||

    What time is the D&D game tonight, nerd?

    Nowhere near as cool as the map with a handful of Mega-cities, that's for sure.

  • John||

    It appears to me that Trump will build most of his wall. The thing as planned is supposed to cost $5 billion dollars. He got $1.5 billion of that from Congress. He will get the rest by reprograming military construction money. The claim is that the whole thing will be tied up in court, but it is not that simple.

    The $1.5 billion and whatever money is reprogramed are different pots of money and effectively different programs. So a court enjoining the reprograming won't stop the $1.5 billion from being spent. The other thing is that 1/3rd of the land where the wall is to be build is federally owned land. Most of the claims of the reprograming being tied up in court center around land owners suing over the use of ED. Well, the sollution to that concern is to at least at first to use the reprogramed funds to build the wall on federally owned land. This will make it very difficult to find a plaintiff who has standing to sue. And even if they do, reprograming DOD construction funds to prevent foreign alliens from tresspassing on federal lands is a pretty strong legal position. Meanwhile, the $1.9 billion can be use to build on all of the non federal areas. There really isn't much basis to sue where the government is spending money appropriated for the purpose by Congress.

    Between the two, a whole lot of wall will get built before even an activist court has much ability to stop it.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Plus, now that Congress appropriated the money for a border fence they cannot then say that border security is not a national issue.

    Congress appropriated money for border security, so by definition its a National issue. The Potomac-Two-Step to border security being a National defense issue is super easy.

  • Rich||

    now that Congress appropriated the money for a border fence they cannot then say that border security is not a national issue.

    Have you read the actual text of the obscenely massive legislation? (Me neither.) Perhaps the fence is a *beautification* project.

  • Sometimes a Great Notion||

    Nope, having been given more money for border security reduces his claim of emergency. Congress has debated and legislated what they think is an appropriate response.

    I really don't care though unless he tries to take land before settling with the private owner on price. Screw taking possession of the land before the market value has been accessed and all due process has been reached.

  • ||

    So are you saying far from being a rube who doesn't understand how politics works, Trump actually has this all thought and planned out?

  • John||

    Someone does. It won't fund all of the wall but it will get a whole lot of it built and will certainly get it built in the areas where it will have the most effect. Getting the $1.9 billion was the key. If the entire thing had to be done with reprogramed money, the courts could have potentially held it up entirely.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    I agree John. Trump needed some token money appropriated by Congress specifically for border fence for this all to come together. Trump got about 25% of what he asked for in border fence appropriations.

  • Ryan (formally HFTO)||

    Are you sure it's a wall? I'm pretty sure it's described as pedestrian fencing

  • John||

    Whatever it is, it will get built. And a fence is just as effective as a wall. Wall is just a generic term for barrior.

  • Mcgoo95||

    "And a fence is just as effective as a wall."

    Except one can be breached with bolt cutters and the other requires a cutting torch. Same same.

  • John||

    That is why you have several fences and not just one. you have layers with a barrier like barb wire in between.

  • ||

    Except one can be breached with bolt cutters and the other requires a cutting torch.

    What? Metal slats constitute a fence in my book. If you can see daylight through it, it's not a wall. You can't bolt cut your way through metal slats. An literal wall, in the classical sense of a border wall, can't be breached without a thermal lance, coring rig, or explosives (or lots and lots of time).

    I'm not saying one or the other was promised or should be built but you're being intentionally stupid about what's literally being described more metaphorically.

  • EscherEnigma||

    To believe this, you have to believe that President Trump was consistently lying every time he was talking about the wall.

  • Tu­lpa||

    No, actually, you don't.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    He will get the rest by reprograming military construction money

    I don't believe he can actually do that because MILCON projects are specifically outlined in the NDAAs. If he tries that, the odds are that the Supreme Court will eventually smack him down, the same way they did with Cheney when he tried to starve the V-22 program of funding.

  • Cyto||

    A local ABC affiliate has a story from multiple Chicago PD sources that say the MAGA Country assault is being investigated as a hoax perpetrated by 3 people.

    This morning the ABC News website has Trump threatening to declare an emergency as their number one story. The number two story? Some random DUI suspect yells racist stuff while getting arrested.

    Yup. That's the second biggest story nationally this morning. Some random drunk yells something while getting arrested.

    Go ahead and explain how this is anything other than propaganda that is designed to divide the country on racial lines. They have a story that fits a real narrative - one of their biggest stories of the last week or so is potentially yet another hoax racist attack - but they ignore it and scour the nation to find anything with a "white people are racist" angle that they can substitute.

  • John||

    You mean crazy rednecks didn't go out on one of the coldest nights in years and attack random black people in a city that is majority black and one of the most dangerous in America? Really? That story was always so believable. I mean maga hat wearing rednecks roam the streets of America's cities beating up random black people all of the time.

  • damikesc||

    You mean crazy rednecks didn't go out on one of the coldest nights in years and attack random black people

    Well, technically, it was one person who got attacked. And in one of the only places in the city without cameras.

    I just think they were being nice. They let him keep his sandwich, didn't they?

    I mean maga hat wearing rednecks roam the streets of America's cities beating up random black people all of the time.

    And Chicago is long known as a HOTBED for Republican voters. Just tons of them there...

    That the media and celebs bought this story so thoroughly debunks the whole "We're jaded because we've seen so much stuff" vibe they like to pretend they have.

  • John||

    Is there a better way to express a death wish than to go try and beat up random black people in Chicago?

  • Rich||

    Serious question: Is this being portrayed as a random attack or a targeted attack?

  • John||

    It was targeted according to his story because it was people in MAGA hats whacking him because he was black. But I don't think he ever claimed they knew who he was and attacked him because of who he was rather than just because he was black and there.

  • Cyto||

    According to police, he said they asked if he was that actor from Empire before assaulting him. So it wasn't just random, it was not even "gay black guy", it was directed against him specifically, and specifically because of his two identity groups.

    He does claim that he never said they had MAGA hats or that they cracked his ribs. Nobody has bothered to explain where those details came from.

  • Rich||

    Nobody has bothered to explain where those details came from.

    *** searches for "person of interest" ***

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    But I don't think he ever claimed they knew who he was and attacked him because of who he was rather than just because he was black and there.

    His initial story is that the attackers specifically recognized him and mentioned his job on "Empire" during the attack.

  • Cyto||

    According to the ABC local news story, when Smollett took police to the location of the attack, he pointed out the traffic camera saying there should be video. The police officer responded that the camera was facing the other way, so it wouldn't be caught on that camera. They would have to look for other sources.

    So if it was a hoax, this observation would fit.... they designed the incident to be caught on camera but screwed up by getting on the wrong side of the intersection.

    Even as a hoax, the whole thing doesn't make a lot of sense. Particularly not as a 3 person conspiracy hoax.

    I know we've seen a lot of hoaxes before - but they are usually college aged kids and usually just one SJW idiot looking for attention. A 3 man conspiracy is a pretty big deal.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    If it is a hoax, the feds should charge the two "assailants" with violating the civil rights of Smollett even if he doesn't want to press charges.

    Go after these SJW assholes with their own excessive and duplicative laws based on race or gender.

  • damikesc||

    I kinda wonder if the redacted parts of Smollett's phone records he didn't turn over included calls to the assailants...

  • loveconstitution1789||

    "Hate crimes" need to be repealed.

    Since intent is rarely needed to be proven by prosecutors anymore, what does it matter if someone attacked someone else because of some "protected" class.

  • Cyto||

    But my biggest interest is with the media.

    They keep leaping at these stories, desperate to paint a portrait of a racist America.

    All of the stories of swastikas painted on rocks and signs right after the election - absolutely made no sense as real stories, and even less sense as national news, but it dominated the news for a while.

    Fast forward to the last month - we have the fake Vietnam vet Native American Elder vs. Catholic School kid in MAGA hat story. Not remotely newsworth, but obsessively covered by all national news stories. Until it was clear that it was a complete scam - in fact the absolute reverse of the story that they had been telling was true. Then they dropped it like a hot potato.

    Now we have Smollett telling a story that is rather unbelievable, even if true. And they are doing stories about how it reveals the true racist and homophobic nature of Trump's America.

    And the moment they have a sourced story that questions the narrative, they drop it and grab a random drunk DUI arrest to stick in it's place.

    This is a big story. A huge propaganda machine pushing a racist narrative, trying to whip people up into racial hatred. And nobody is covering it.

  • John||

    The contrast between the media's willingness to believe even the most incredible story about white people and white men in particular with how it will bend over backwards to deny the obvious if the crime involves a minority or a Muslim does real damage to the country. I don't know who they think they are fooling when they claim that some guy who shouts "Allah Akbar" and shoots a bunch of people motivations will never be known or if they think no one notices how they will make a national news story out of some high school kids getting into an argument with an activist but then refuse to cover really shocking crimes perpetrated by black people agianst whites. Everyone sees the double standard and it accomplishes nothing except making truth tellers out of the real alt right and creating resentment among the races where it wasn't there before.

  • Cyto||

    Everyone sees the double standard and it accomplishes nothing except making truth tellers out of the real alt right and creating resentment among the races where it wasn't there before.

    That's the insight I'm angling for people to grasp. Is this an accidental side effect? Or is that the intended outcome all along?

  • John||

    Part of me thinks it is intentional. But I also am doubtful the media is smart enough to be that clever and really do think they are helping things and doing the right thing but are just that stupid not to understand what is going on.

  • Cyto||

    Someone is clearly pulling the strings at a lot of the mainstream media offices.

    Everyone jumping on the MAGA hat kid within a very short period of time was just too weird. And then they all dropped it like a hot potato. Nobody decided to do the deep dive and explain the real story and go after the activist guy.

    This morning they covered the "Trump declaring emergency" story with a new twist of phrase.

    "Trump using emergency declaration to take taxpayer money to pay for wall".

    A new phrase that just appeared out of nowhere in multiple outlets, emphasizing that government spending is using taxpayer funds? Does anyone around here think that Savannah Guthrie really picked "taxpayer funds" as an important aspect of this story, all on her own accord? Because that's been an important issue for her for years, as everyone knows...*insert eye-roll emoji here*

  • John||

    The journolist is real. They all get their talking points and phrasing from some central group and then follow it to the letter. They use the same language at the same time too often for it to be an accident.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    The journolist is real. They all get their talking points and phrasing from some central group and then follow it to the letter

    The first exposure of the Journolist basically showed that they collaborate and come to a consensus on what the narratives will be. It's obvious that they just shifted to doing it in a different forum that hasn't been exposed yet, after the Journolist emails were released.

    I wouldn't be surprised if some 4chan autist hacked some of their computers down the line to try and find an exclusive listserv or online media network where this takes place.

  • Nardz||

    It's absolutely intentional.
    All the things that are happening now are just the hysterical culmination of trends that have been going on for a decade, if not longer.
    What happened at the end of 2016 didn't change the Left's course - it just drove them over the edge.
    Everything they'd been doing subtly they dialed up to 11

  • ||

    Kmele 2020

  • Cyto||

    Not only would he get my vote, but he'd get campaign contributions.

    He'd also likely get assassinated by the media long before that could happen, if he ever did manage to garner any attention. He checks almost every leftist outrage box there is.

  • damikesc||

    I severely dislike this emergency declaration. Seems like one of the worst ideas possible that is only going to open a Pandora's Box of incredibly bad ideas.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Presidents Have Declared 58 States of Emergency Since 1979. 31 Are Ongoing

    As linked above.

  • Cyto||

    Looking over the list of emergency declarations dating back to the Clinton era, it looks like it has mostly been used for meddling in foreign governmental affairs.

    Mostly for freezing assets of people associated with governments we don't like.

    Certainly less arguably "national emergency" situations than tens of thousands of people illegally crossing the border. I mean, sure, toppling Qaddafi's government was critical to US national security, so seizing their assets was too urgent to follow normal constitutional processes... .but Nicaragua? Ethiopia? Sudan? Yemen?

    I mean, sure, Trump used one such declaration to combat Russian interference in US elections.... but that one doesn't even fit anywhere in the national narrative.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    I noticed the same thing Cyto.

    National defense/border security seems like the most Constitutionally relevant use of "emergency" powers.

  • John||

    One of the "national emergencies" that never gets talked about is the one Bush signed after 9-11 and gets signed every year by three different Presidents now, is the one that lifted to total compensation cap available to military retirees. Under the language of the law, a military retiree can only get so much compensation from the government in any one year. This was passed to deter military retirees from taking civil service jobs and double dipping. After 9-11 Bush declared an national emergency and under the terms of the law that set the cap used his authority to lift it. That created a huge rush of military reitrees moving over to the GS side and making enormous bank.

    If you really want an easy way to reduce the size of the bureacracy, especially at the Pentagon but also all over the government, end that emergency and put the cap back in place along with a hiring freeze. Do that and a ton of grey beards would no longer be able to double dip and would leave government service. That combined with a hiring freeze would do wonders.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Thanks John. Did not know that about double dipping motivation.

  • John||

    You are welcome.

  • Cyto||

    My neighborhood is maybe 20% retired police from the northeast who are down here living on their 6 figure pension while working a 6 figure job at on of the local police departments.

    I know about the money because I asked how in the world a bunch of "poor" police officers could afford $400k boats and $80k cars. One of the officers explained the situation above. They have 15-20 years after reaching full retirement to continue working at essentially double salary.

    Plus, apparently cops make a whole lot in overtime. A whole lot. Like sometimes doubling their salary from overtime.

  • John||

    Washington is full of retired Colonels and Lieutenant Colonels who are working GS 15 or SES jobs. Their combined salaries are well over $200K a year in many cases. Oh, you can buy into the GS retirement service using your years served in the military very cheaply. So, they buy in their say 25 years of military service and then work ten or fifteen years and collect their military retirements and 35 or 40% of the GS pay as a civilian retirement. It is outragous. If the media ever did its job, I think the public would demand Congress put a stop to it.

  • some guy||

    The civilian workforce can double dip too. They're called retired/reemployed annuitants. I hate it when people thank civilian employees for their "service" or try to claim that government workers are somehow sacrificing and taking lower compensation in order to serve their country. It's just plain wrong. The wage grade folks are all unionized and doing better than the private sector. The GS folks are often unionized and always getting better total compensation than the private sector.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    My neighborhood is maybe 20% retired police from the northeast who are down here living on their 6 figure pension while working a 6 figure job at on of the local police departments.

    And the problem with these relocations is that people in their former communities are basically subsidizing their lifestyle without getting anything in return to keep those communities viable. People in rural Montana counties should not be shelling out tax dollars that could be better spent on the people who are actually living there, just so a retired sheriff's deputy can live the sweet double-dipping life in Texas, or some dipshit California bureaucrat retiree can move up to Washington state to avoid Cali's onerous income tax rates.

    Every municipal, county, and state pension should come with relocation penalties if you move outside that locality. Stay in the community, and you get the full amount, because at least you're contributing to the people who paid your salary for 20-30 years. Move anywhere outside those boundaries, and your compensation falls to 25% or less. At least that way, if they're going to double-dip anyway, their former neighbors no longer have to bear the brunt of supporting their lavish lifestyle.

  • ||

    Every municipal, county, and state pension should come with relocation penalties if you move outside that locality. Stay in the community, and you get the full amount, because at least you're contributing to the people who paid your salary for 20-30 years. Move anywhere outside those boundaries, and your compensation falls to 25% or less. At least that way, if they're going to double-dip anyway, their former neighbors no longer have to bear the brunt of supporting their lavish lifestyle.

    This pro-borders argument requires too much thought and is way too libertarian. Stay in your racist, Mexican-hating lane you Trumpista.

  • Tu­lpa||

    Decent impression.

  • ||

    Same thing here. One guy I know retired from the RCMP at 43 with a nice pension plus he works in something else.

    Pisses me off.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Seems like one of the worst ideas possible that is only going to open a Pandora's Box of incredibly bad ideas.

    In a few years it will be used to fight climate change.

  • Rich||

    Pelosi's already surfaced using it to fight guns.

  • Tu­lpa||

    She, like dumbasses in this very thread, ignore that that is basically impossible.

  • ||

    The arresting of Russian agents, freezing of assets, and sanctioning of oligarchs is predicated on the totally real threat Russia posed to our elections after Hillary lost.

    "Don't use any power within your means to stop illegal immigrants from entering the country because, if you do, when we get in power we'll abuse the power far worse than you could ever dream."

  • Leo Kovalensky II||

    ^ yep

    My only hope is that the anti-Trump hysteria is enough to limit Presidential power.

    In fact, I almost was able to type all of that without breaking out into hysterical laughter.... almost.

  • John||

    People keep saying that but it isn't so simple. Declaring an emergency only gets the President whatever power the emergency statute say come with the emergency. It is not a blank check. Its only working for Trump here because he needs money to build something. The emergency allows him to reprogram construction funds to build his wall. But if he needed money for say more border patrol agents or needed greater authority to deport people without a hearing, declaring the national emergency wouldn't do him a damn bit of good.

    So whenever someone claims "the liberals will declare an emergency about climate change" or whatever, they need to then explain just what emergency power the liberals are going to use and what they are going to do with it. Merely declaring the emergency doesn't give you the power to do anything you want.

  • some guy||

    Couldn't they do a lot of damage reprogramming funding to fight climate change? Also, couldn't they start freezing/confiscating assets of people and companies that are accused of polluting? If the power to tax is the power to destroy, then so is this.

  • ||

    Couldn't they do a lot of damage reprogramming funding to fight climate change? Also, couldn't they start freezing/confiscating assets of people and companies that are accused of polluting?

    Not unless the accused polluting companies were tied to some totally real national security threat like Russia hacking our election.

    Seriously, it's pretty naked virtue signalling with Trump saying he'll take any action in his power to make life harder for illegal immigrants and democrats warning him that he better not because they hate democracy, private property, truth, justice, and the American way and they will be in power again someday.

  • some guy||

    Gun violence will come first. You watch. Then either racism or climate change.

  • Tu­lpa||

    "Gun violence will come first."

    Not if they don't want to get slapped down in court it won't.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    What would the US look like as 100 citystates? I made a map! Enjoy: https://t.co/APJHzlmpfh
    — Nolan Gray (@mnolangray) February 14, 2019

    Oh, no. I'm not replacing all my flags.

  • Rich||

    THIS IS SPARTA! SPARTA, NEW JERSEY!

  • Ray McKigney||

    Lancaster is the San Marino of America.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

  • $park¥ is the Worst||

    Two girls got pinched for speaking Spanish therefore everyone who is anti-immigration is a racist. Good call, chief.

    Do you really not understand that there is a shitload of room between "everybody is a racist" and "nobody is a racist"?

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    I didn't say everyone who is anti-immigration is a racist. "Some, I presume, are good people."

    I do think that obsessing over immigration and excluding the "wrong" people creates a climate of xenophobia in which incidents like the above are more likely to happen.

    Wanting restrictive immigration, as one policy preference among a menu of other preferences, is one thing.
    Obsessing over it, creating false narratives about "invasions" and "terrorists with prayer rugs", continually otherizing immigrants as second-class people, wildly exaggerating the fears associated with immigration, is quite different, and those are what contribute to the climate of xenophobia.

  • $park¥ is the Worst||

    I didn't say everyone who is anti-immigration is a racist.

    Never said, always implied.

    I do think that obsessing over immigration
    Obsessing over it

    The people against immigration aren't the only ones obsessing.

    creating false narratives about "invasions" and "terrorists with prayer rugs", continually otherizing immigrants as second-class people, wildly exaggerating the fears associated with immigration

    Guess what, some people are assholes. Those people are always going to be assholes. Nothing you can possibly say is going to stop them from being assholes. You'd be better off addressing issues that you see rather than calling out assholes.

  • MiloMinderbinder||

    Still waiting for the OBC explanation why Illegal Aliens shouldn't be eligible for MediCaid, Section 8, LiHEAP, Food Stamps, etc.

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    There is no natural right to welfare.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Tell them that.

  • EscherEnigma||

    Correct.

    It is a kindness we have extended.

  • Tu­lpa||

    I remember you said illegal aliens were a burden and a huge drain on the economy. Does that count?

  • loveconstitution1789||

    MAGA!

  • Crusty Juggler||

    lol

  • loveconstitution1789||

    More like MAGALOL!

  • $park¥ is the Worst||

    I didn't care for the Godzilla vs MAGALOL movie. It just felt uninspired.

  • Bearded Spock||

    By the time the franchise got to that point the producers were just going through the motions.

    I mean, even the rubber monster suits looked fake.

  • Ray McKigney||

    MAGALOLWUT?

  • IceTrey||

    Thousands of people trying to get into the US with weird jungle diseases sounds like an emergency to me.

  • $park¥ is the Worst||

    Jungle fever is the worst.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Unless it's porn.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    New R. Kelly Tape Allegedly Shows Singer Having Sex With Underage Girl

    CNN reported Thursday that it has seen the video that lawyer Michael Avenatti claims shows R. Kelly assaulting an underage girl—and that the "clear and explicit" footage "appears to show" the disgraced singer "having sex with a girl who refers to her body parts as 14 years old."

    In the 42-minute video, CNN reports, "a naked man who appears to be R. Kelly" performs "multiple sex acts with the girl." The girl's age remains unclear—but both she and the man reportedly reference her "14-year-old p***y." She reportedly calls him "daddy" multiple times, and after asking her to urinate, the footage appears to show the singer urinating on the young girl.

    Uh, he clearly meant that it was just very tight. Also, arrest them all for possessing underage pornography, please. Thank you.

  • John||

    Did R Kelly ever not tape it when he had sex with underage girls?

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Most likely.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Bravo Crusty...Bravo.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Normally I don't do this
    But I'm gonna hit ya'll off with a little taste of the remix
    Ya'll ready, here we go

    I pick you up from the club
    Take you home to make some love
    Got a surprise close your eyes
    I'm gonna cover you with suds

    I'm gonna give you some poo-poo
    I'm gonna give you some pee-pee
    I'm gonna give you some doo-doo
    Wash it down with some wee-wee

    This is the remix edition of the song about pissing
    I got that peeing, leaking, reeking, and there's juice in the kitchen

    (talking ...)
    Yeah, that's how it goes at a R. Kelly party
    I sip Cris, you drink piss
    I'm wanna piss on you remix, ya heard
    Nah, I'm serious I really do want to piss on you

  • Cyto||

    We have already been down this road.

    Dave Chappelle covered it best.

  • Tu­lpa||

    "a girl who refers to her body parts as 14 years old."

    Why does that sound so stupidly contrived?

    "lawyer Michael Avenatti "

    Ah. Now the weird phrasing makes sense.

  • ||

    I admit that I'll shed a few tears if we end up convicting Avenatti for paying somebody to rape a 14-yr.-old girl. Tears shed while laughing uproariously.

  • ||

    both she and the man reportedly reference her "14-year-old p***y."

    [Quietly notes all the cis-normative bigots that just assume she was born with a p***y.]

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Jeff Sessions ranted that the FBI 'was better off when you only hired Irishmen' because 'they were drunks, but could be trusted' claims McCabe book

    n excerpts from the book obtained by the Washington Post, McCabe claims Sessions blamed migrants for social problems and held racist sentiments.

    Sessions allegedly stereotyped Irishmen as honest drunks when comparing the FBI's former workforce to their modern counterparts: 'They could be trusted. Not like all those new people with nose rings and tattoos — who knows what they're doing?'

    Now the drunks are all in the Secret Service, where they belong!

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    He might have a point about the soyboy/dangerhair generation making the FBI more incompetent than it was before.

  • John||

    He likely does but the existence of John Conolly puts lie to his claim it is the only problem. Maybe you just can't let Irishman work in Boston.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    He might have a point about the soyboy/dangerhair generation making the FBI more incompetent than it was before.

    McCabe, Comey, Mueller et all are part of the loathed soyboy generation?

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    In reference to their workforce, not the guys at the top.

  • Cyto||

    Yeah, that's the take-home from this book.

    Not the confession of an attempt to form a coup conspiracy from inside the group of conspirators. Sessions made a joke about drunk irish cops..... That's the real news here.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Agreed.

  • Ray McKigney||

    The Left is spinning the book as the story how McCabe et al. bravely tried to protect the country from a crazy man.

  • Tu­lpa||

    And failing. Badly.

  • damikesc||

    Irony...the crazy man was McCabe.

  • DajjaI||

    there is no explicit funding for the FIRST STEP Act included in the bill

    We don't need more funding to let people out of prison early, we need less. #thisisnothardpeople

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    "Jessica Rosenworcel, a member of the Federal Communications Commission, does not like TV and radio ads for e-cigarettes, and she seems to think they can be banned by reinterpreting the 1970 law that prohibited broadcast ads for conventional cigarettes," reports Reason's Jacob Sullum

    This is the same worthless cunt that was pimping net neutrality.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Travis Kauffman explains how he killed a mountain lion with his bare hands

    He said he tried to scare off the animal by putting up his arms and screaming at it, but the mountain lion charged at him and pounced.

    The big cat, which weighed about 80 pounds, sunk a tooth into his wrist and another into his thumb. It then scratched his back with its front claws and gouged his thighs with his hind legs.

    As he struggled with the animal, they both tumbled off the trail.


    "But during that fall, the cat ended up on its back and it still had my wrist this whole time in its mouth," Kauffman told the radio station.

    He was able to pin the animal's hind legs down with his body, then he picked up a rock and started hitting the cat in the head.

    Eventually, Kauffman decided his best plan of attack was to strangle the cat.

    "I got my right foot onto its neck," he said. "And then I was able to get some weight onto its windpipe and that's what eventually suffocated it."

    The fight lasted only about 10 minutes, he told the radio station, but it was long enough for Kauffman to fear for his life.

    Holy Macanoli!

  • $park¥ is the Worst||

    which weighed about 80 pounds

    The news person I heard it from said it was 40 pounds.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    You can't trust the media!!

  • $park¥ is the Worst||

    I saw the dude and he didn't look like a kung fu master. Only a kung fu master can kill an 80 pound lion.

  • ||

    Holy Macanoli!

    I don't understand why this is news.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Remember back when the district courts went after Trump's travel ban on the basis of statements he made in the media--rather than the text of the EO itself? Well, the Trump administration seems to have learned from that.

    When Trump's border emergency is challenged in court, it will probably go to to the same channels as the travel ban did. Since Trump started making statements in the media about terrorists in the Caravan, I've been pointing out that these statements may have been calculated to withstand another emergency in court.

    If the courts are going to disqualify the text of an EO on the basis of intentions they read into it because of things Trump said in his rally speeches, then I don't see why they shouldn't consider Trump's statements to the press about terrorists among the illegal immigrants when they look at his declaration of an emergency.

    The correct decision would have been not to judge the text of an EO by statements the president made on the campaign trail. Now they've opened up a can full of worms. Now we're all gonna have to eat them--maybe forever. Now, every time a president speaks on camera on an issue, they can lay the groundwork for a defense of a controversial EO simply by making ludicrous statements.

    TDS is not harmless. Throwing your principles out the window because you hate Trump is stupid and it hurts us.

  • Cyto||


    TDS is not harmless. Throwing your principles out the window because you hate Trump is stupid and it hurts us.

    I couldn't agree more.

    The problem is, I'm afraid their principles are "push team blue". So not only will they reverse course if it suits them, they'll happily proclaim that there is no contradiction whatsoever.

  • Ken Shultz||

    The courts!

    The courts seem to have thrown their principles out the window because of TDS!

  • John||

    The problem is finding someone who has standing to challenge the declaration. Congress has the power to override it and veto the reprograming. Given that, it seems a bit of a stretch to claim Congress has standing to sue the President over an action they could stop but chose not to.

    Certainly any land owner who is subject to emminent domain would have standing to bring suit and could as a part of thier suit claim the money is being spent illegally. But, like I explain above, if you use the reprogramed money to build the wall of federal lands, there won't be any land owners who have standing.

    Remember, Trump has $1.9 billion in appropriated funds to build his wall. It is hard to see how anyone would have any good faith legal basis to object to whatever parts of the wall are built pursuent to that authorization and funds. So, all he has to do is use the appropriated money to build the wall on non federal lands and the reprogramed money to build it on federal lands and there won't be much the courts can do to stop him.

  • newshutz||

    just declare the wall to be a National Monument.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    looking for second robbery suspect in friendly fire death

    The accomplice — whose name is being withheld as investigators continue their search — posted up outside the store as Ransom, wearing a mask and carrying an imitation Colt handgun, headed inside, setting into motion a deadly series of events, sources said.

    As Ransom, 27, ushered two workers into the back of store, bound them and started filling a duffel bag with cash and phone SIM cards, two people called 911, sources said. With cops massing outside, the lookout man bailed, apparently before police realized he was connected.

    I think he needs a career change.

  • Ken Shultz||

    I generally shy away from people's tweets, but this one's a gem:

    "Anything is possible: today was the day a group of dedicated, everyday New Yorkers & their neighbors defeated Amazon's corporate greed, its worker exploitation, and the power of the richest man in the world".

    ----Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

    Everyday New Yorkers and their neighbors just lost the benefit of 25,000 high paying jobs because of high taxes, demands for Amazon's unionization from politicians, and the attitudes of people like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

    If and when New York City turns into Detroit, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez will be dancing and making heart-hands to celebrate the destruction every step of the way.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    everyday New Yorkers & their neighbors defeated Amazon's corporate greed, its worker exploitation, and the power of the richest man in the world".

    She is right.

    If and when New York City turns into Detroit, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez will be dancing and making heart-hands to celebrate the destruction every step of the way.

    New York will never throw Big Finance out, so it will be going strong for a long time.

  • Cyto||

    They might just throw themselves out at some point.

    With all of the trading being electronic, moving to a newer location would not only be reasonably easy, it would have other advantages - better layout for high speed interconnects, for example.

    If the tax and regulatory burden in NYC gets too high, I'd expect them to start looking elsewhere.

    A lot of IPOs already moved to the AIM and other exchanges because of issues with the NYSE. No reason the entire exchange couldn't move if the problems got severe enough.

  • Ken Shultz||

    It wouldn't be the first time New York City reverted to being a hellhole in my lifetime--regardless of the financial industry.

    Meanwhile, if you think that golden goose is too big and strong to die of parasites, no matter how many feed on it, you're flat out wrong.

    Brexit may have given New York a reprieve from competition from London for the moment, but that won't last forever. New York had already fallen behind London. Singapore is probably a stronger contender to take over London's lead if it should falter.

    There is no law in economics that says New York City has to be the financial center of the United States much less the financial center of the world. The benefit there is a function of clustering and networks, but that is not as important as it used to be with communications as they are. They might do just as well to cluster around Silicon Valley or Austin.

  • Ray McKigney||

    It's like a marriage. At some point, the hassle of putting up with your spouse's sh*t outweighs the hassle of moving on.

  • $park¥ is the Worst||

    What is it with Libertarians and shitty or failed marriages?

  • Ray McKigney||

    "Better to reign in Hell than have a real job in Heaven."

  • Mickey Rat||

    How does one feel about a crony capitalist being squelched for such stupid reasoning? Amazon is going to get a cushy deal somewhere, and AOC has screwed her constituents while thinking it is a victory because of her spite against the superwealthy.

  • Tony||

    I think Trump just endorsed the death penalty for drug dealers.

    I don't think this was the libertarian moment some of you thought it was.

  • Cyto||

    I don't remember anyone claiming "libertarian moment".

    But there were quite a few "hey, there are a surprising number of things libertarians can get behind hiding in this giant bag of crazy" hot-takes around here.

    And there are.

    And I'm not sure that this is all that complementary. I mean, we libertarians already have the "those guys are batshit insane" reputation because of drug legalization and prostitution legalization. Now it turns out that Trump randomly lands on policies we agree with sometimes? Yeah, that one could cut either way. Blind squirrel finding a nut, or prima-facia evidence that we are in fact a giant bag of nuts.

  • Tony||

    Is it the thousand-mile government land-grabs, the concentration camps, or the state murder of drug dealers?

    Consider that both parties do some libertarians things and nots of unlibertarian things, and that it about evens out. Then consider which has become more batshit insane even than libertarians.

  • Tu­lpa||

    You really clearly hate losing to Trump on this.

    Calm down, go outside, find something better to do that cry about your defeat. You'll feel better.

  • Brian||

    The Green New Deal party.

  • Tony||

    True, you do share with the GOP an outlandishly stubborn resistance to scientific facts you don't like.

  • Dillinger||

    >>>What a bad (frankly, embarrassing) day for constitutional and fiscal conservatism

    day? is there a word for eight decades? octodecade.

  • sharmota4zeb||

    From the city-state link: This often results in excessive fragmentation, unproductive competition, and a near total lack of regional land-use and transportation planning.

    That is a feature, not a bug.

  • vek||

    One: BUILD THE WALL!

    Two: The city state idea isn't bad. We could definitely use more states, as the current regime has turned vast swaths of land into shitholes run by insane progs, when 90% of the land area of the state is filled with sane people. Breaking up many of these states into ones dominated by a different/smaller city would leave the rural populations actually able to have sway.

    Alternatively, just making the city states ACTUAL city states, and having the rest of the state remain a bigger blob would be okay too. Think like Bay Area and LA being things, but the rest of Cali separate with Sacramento as the capitol still or something. It would be an improvement.

    Either way, I'd be down to move to a few of the new city states as laid out there. The Boise or Spokane ones look alright by me!

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