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I’m finally towards the end of the backlog of Halloween pictures I’ve been meaning to share online. Last month I got diverted by Inktober, where I was one of many artists who created one new ink drawing every day from October 1-31 then uploaded that drawing on social media and other online places. At first I thought it was fun but, by the end of the month, I began to totally burn out on this. It’s amazing how much time a daily project like this takes out of your day. (Which is why I’ve declined to take part in either NaNoWriMo or Makevember, which are both taking place this month.)

While I was finishing the last drawings for Inktober, I took part in a few weekend events. Friday I went on the First Friday Art Walk in Hyattsville then went to the tail end of the Greenbelt Pumpkin Festival. I ended up filming The Mojo Priests’ performance at the nearby New Deal Cafe after the director of this documentary that I’ve been helping out with contacted me at the last minute because he decided that he wanted footage of not only The Mojo Priests but also another band that would perform at the same venue the following night. Saturday afternoon I decided to check out some Halloween-related things that were going on in Annapolis. Saturday evening I went on the Greenbelt Pumpkin Walk then I headed back to the New Deal Cafe where I filmed some footage of The Wild Anacostias. Sunday morning was the Halloween/Samhain service at my church followed by the Trunk or Treat event followed by helping with teaching an English class that my church is offering to recent immigrants.

So I got to Monday, October 30, the day before Halloween. I thought I would have a day to rest only to realize that last week I signed up for this twilight networking event that would be held from 5:30 p.m.-7 p.m. at the Maryland Workforce Exchange in Laurel. By that point I was reluctant to go, especially since I had attended previous twilight networking events since January and the best I was able to get as a result was to snag a gig as an extra for a PBS television special hosted by finance guru Ric Edelman. (I found it to be an interesting experience but I really needed something a bit more permanent with a steady paycheck.) I decided to go because I felt that if I didn’t go, it would be the one networking event where there was a genuine opportunity and I would miss out on it.

I arrived in Laurel a few hours early in order to beat the rush hour traffic. Usually I would eat an early dinner at Harris Teeter at 4 p.m. so I wouldn’t go networking with strangers on an empty stomach. When I arrived, I began to feel mildly queasy, which I wrote off as nerves. (In hindsight I think it was the beginning of that stomach flu that had totally derailed me the next day on Halloween itself.) I found that there was a temporary Halloween store next to Harris Teeter known as Halloween City.

Sure I felt a little bit queasy but I felt that doing a detour in this store would calm my nerves (this was when I thought that it was stress-related instead of the beginnings of that stomach flu). I felt okay as I focused more on what I saw on sale and less on my very mild queasiness. Halloween City is like the Spirit of Halloween in that it’s a temporary store that sets up shop in an empty storefront until Halloween and it sells a variety of decorations, costumes, makeup, and masks.

I found a few Native American costumes that I’m not sure if Native American groups would approve of. In recent years various ethnic groups, including Native Americans, have complained about certain costumes based on their culture while deriving them as cultural appropriation.

The rest of the store featured more benign costumes such as witches, ghosts, superheroes, grim reapers, and more.

There was a special Day of the Dead rack where people can purchase costumes for that traditional Mexican holiday (which falls on November 1-2).

There was this incredibly creepy looking Vladimir Putin mask.

It was a brief visit and I didn’t buy anything in that store. After that visit I went to Harris Teeter where I ate my early dinner. My queasiness had totally subsided after I finished eating so that was why I thought it was nerves rather than the stomach flu. I managed to go through the twilight networking event with no major problems. There were a couple of promising leads so I was glad I went. However, I ended up not following up on them until the next week due to what came the next day.

After the event ended I went to Giant where I found this pumpkin that was on sale so I bought it. I drove to another grocery store also in Laurel where I found even cheaper pumpkins so I bought that one as well. So I had two additional pumpkins that would join the pumpkin I purchased earlier at Clark’s Elioak Farm. I spent the rest of the evening carving faces into my three pumpkins in preparation for Halloween the next day until it was bedtime.

When I woke up the next morning I really felt horrible. The mild queasy feeling I felt the day before had intensified and I spent Halloween day alternating between diarrhea and vomiting (except I was doing more dry heaves than actually throwing anything up). I felt so horrible that I was barely able to give out the Halloween pretzel treats to the trick or treaters who came to my door. I was invited to a party at a friend’s house that would begin once the official trick or treating time ended at 8 p.m. but I ended up going to Giant instead because I was running low on toilet paper and medication. I went to bed early when I returned home.

The worst part of the stomach flu was gone by the next day but I was extremely tired and weak. I spent the rest of that week just resting.

I think what happened is that I had done so much in the days leading up to Halloween that it made my body more susceptible to catching whatever germs were going around and I happened to end up with the stomach flu on Halloween. I’ve had other friends getting sick with something similar so I think there’s something that’s going around and I was unlucky enough to catch it just in time for Halloween.

I’ve learned that I’m going to have to be more picky as to what holiday events I’ll go to and stop trying to attend as many as possible, even if they are all located within a few miles of each other. That’s a valuable lesson since Thanksgiving and the winter holidays are coming up in the near future.

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How to recognize Russian propaganda on social media.

Apple breaks new ground in squeezing locals for huge tax breaks while offering almost no jobs.

Why you should stop entering design competitions.

Networking is not just for the young.

Dictionary of the oldest written language, Akkadian (which was spoken in ancient Mesopotamia) is now available online for free.

22 of the best painted stones ideas that will raise your creativity.

Claude Taylor and Louise Mensch are cautionary tales on why you should stop believing Twitter’s “citizen journalists.”

Legacy isn’t going to save Marvel Comics.

Two women entrepreneurs create fake male co-founder to beat startup sexism.

Democracy in crisis: This ain’t the Summer of Love.

Six ways you didn’t realize Ronald Reagan ruined the country.

The 15 top art schools in the United States.

Why you shouldn’t submit your photographs to vanity magazines.

The solution to our housing crisis is to let communities own property.

Inside the summer camp for kids who are allergic to the sun.

30 photographs that will change your mind about tattoos.

Day of the Dead nesting dolls.

South Africa’s wealth divide analyzed through impressive aerial photographs.

Free download of hundreds of issues of Jugend, Germany’s pioneering art nouveau magazine that was published from 1896 to 1940.

Expert doubles down: robots still threaten 47% of U.S. jobs.

Skill, re-skill and re-skill again. How to keep up with the future of work.

17-year-old Stanley Kubrick’s photos of 1940s New York proves that he was born a genius.

Why the right is suddenly terrified of political violence.

What if Hillary Clinton had won the elections last year?

I finally got around to attending a DC Drink and Draw event for the first time since I went to one previous event in 2015. It gave me a rare chance to go to Adams-Morgan, which is one of my favorite neighborhoods in DC. I took the Metro to Dupont Circle and walked north where I took photos of some lovely sights.

The Embassy of Zimbabwe has a couple of interesting sculptures on its front lawn.

The next photo shows the embassy and flag of what is widely rumored to be President Trump’s favorite foreign country—Russia.

The Swann Condominiums, located at 1801-1803 Swann St., N.W., has an interesting false door with swan-themed art.

I took a few more pictures of some local businesses.

 

That small Eiffel Tower on top of the building led me to take a picture of L’Enfant Cafe and Bar. When I took a closer look at the place, I found out that it has recently gone out of business. It’s too bad I didn’t get a chance to check the place out sooner. (That’s what I get for not going to Adams-Morgan too often.) At least I got a chance to take a picture of the small Eiffel Tower since it’s probably very likely that it will be removed once a new business takes over the space.

The next photo show some political humor in the window featuring Donald Trump and Russia. (LOL!)

The next photo shows the restaurant Johnny Pistolas, where the DC Drink and Draw event was held. One of the main reasons why that event was held is because Johnny Pistolas has Taco Tuesday where all tacos costs $2 each while certain beers were also on sale for $2 and $3, depending on the brand. (As you can guess, this event took place on a Tuesday night.

Here is what I drew at the DC Drink and Draw event that night. While I was waiting for my own tacos to arrive, I did a drawing of a plate of tacos that two women sitting next to me received.

The only beer I purchased was a can of Tecate beer because it was on sale for $3. I made two drawings of the beer can from two different sides.

And, last but not least, I drew a glass of water that had a lime slice floating in it.

Six months ago today Donald Trump was formally sworn in as the 45th President of the United States of America. At the time I wrote this post predicting that President Trump would not survive past his first term. I personally felt that the drama surrounding President Trump would really get out of hand starting next year. But I didn’t expect the out-of-hand drama to really get going during the first six months. In a lot of ways, Donald Trump’s bizarre tweet that had the word “covfefe,” makes the perfect metaphor for his administration (as well as providing the title for this post).

In the interest of fairness, I will mention the one good thing that President Trump has done. He killed that awful Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), which deserved to be killed because it would’ve not only hampered worker rights but it would’ve given corporations more rights than national sovereignty. The fact that President Obama, a Democrat, really worked hard on making this a reality, says a lot about who the Democratic Party is really aligned with these days (and it’s not the workers).

Unfortunately the things President Trump has said and done since he killed the TPP has completely obliterated the one good thing he did from my immediate memory.

I originally intended to write a rant analyzing Donald Trump’s first six months in office only to realize that it’s not really possible. So much has happened that I would literally have to spend at least two weeks doing the researching, writing, and re-writes necessary to come up with something that would be so long that it would read more like a multi-page report that I used to be required to write for a college class than a blog post. And I did plenty of these reports when I was a college student and I no longer have the patience or inclination to do anything like that (especially for no pay or college credit or any other kind of incentive). On top of it there are new news coming out nearly every day (sometimes two or more major stories will break on the same day) so trying to keep up with everything is such a major challenge that I’m very glad that I had never started a news blog of my very own.

Instead I’m just going to provide links to articles that I have collected over the past six months. These link titles provide a litany of the sheer fuckery that is the Trump Administration and some of Trump’s hardcore supporters who continue to side with him despite what is currently going on with his administration.

Comparing Donald Trump and Barack Obama’s inaugural crowd sizes

Inauguration and Women’s March, By The Numbers

Donald Trump got behind the wheel of a truck and everyone is making the same joke

The Real Targets of Trump’s Strike [on Syria] Were His Domestic Critics

The Inside Story of the Kushner-Bannon Civil War

Media Ignores Trump’s Conflicts Of Interest To Promote War in Syria

The Problem With Trump’s Attempt to Scare North Korea

As Trump plays the global strongman, what happened to ‘America first’?

We Now Have the Perfect 20-Second Metaphor for How Trump Has Treated His Supporters

Trumpism: It’s Coming From the Suburbs

Comey Affair Sign of a Fractured American State

Five Reasons Why the Comey Affair is Worse Than Watergate

I wrote ‘The Art of the Deal’ with Trump. His self-sabotage is rooted in his past.

Trump Has Meltdown on Twitter, But Offline Sources Say He’s Emotionally Withdrawing and Gaining Weight

Right to bear arms? Trump accused of plagiarising family crest

‘Covfefe’: Trump invents new word and melts internet

The Great Betrayal of Middle America

Can we finally kill off the zombie lie? Trump’s voters weren’t the “white working class”

The Trump Organization Is Launching a Chain of Americana-Themed Hotels Called ‘American Idea’

Eric Trump Reportedly Bragged About Access to $100 Million in Russian Money

How Donald Trump Shifted Kids-Cancer Charity Money Into His Business

Donald Trump’s new FBI director pick has Russian ties of his own

Meet the community tracking every time Trump contradicts himself on Twitter

Trump to Mayor of ‘Drowning’ Island: Don’t Worry About Sea Level Rise

America Doesn’t Feel Real Anymore

Trump’s Obama Obsession

America has a corruption problem. And it’s not just Trump.

The White House banned cameras from press briefings, so CNN sent in a courtroom sketch artist

GOP senators: Trump attack on MSNBC hosts ‘beneath the dignity of his office’

Jesus, Donald Trump, What The Fuck Is Wrong With You?

Morning Joe co-hosts accuse White House of blackmail over tabloid story

The Guy That’s In the White House Is Definitely the Guy Joe Scarborough Knew Two Years Ago

Donald Trump posts video clip of him ‘beating’ CNN in wrestling

‘South Park’ Will Ignore Donald Trump, Says Trey Parker

Historian Timothy Snyder: “It’s pretty much inevitable” that Trump will try to stage a coup and overthrow democracy

Trump Used to Make Sense When He Talked. So What Happened?

28-Year-Old Woman With No Political Experience Now Among Top Paid Trump Staffers

The music video that connects President Trump to his son’s meeting with a Kremlin-backed lawyer

Trump returned to Twitter to defend his meeting with Putin. It didn’t go well.

Ivanka Trump under fire after taking seat among world leaders at G20

Ivanka Trump’s qualification for sitting in at the G20? She’s part of the 1%

Trump Continues Tirade Against Press At Event Honoring Veterans

Rebecca Solnit: The Loneliness of Donald Trump

Trump’s Legal Team Argues That Sexual Harassment Is Protected By The 1st Amendment

Trump’s son met Russian who promised material on Clinton

Why Putin Loves Trump: He’s Making America Weak Again

Trump Supporters Go into Meltdown Over Moby’s Latest Music Video

The White House Isn’t Denying Any Key Facts About Donald Trump Jr.’s Russia Fiasco

Keith Olbermann digs up old Trump tweet that may confirm he knew Don Jr. met with Russian lawyer

Mike Pence distances himself from Trump campaign as Don Jr.’s emails threaten several insiders

What Do the Russians Have on the Trump Family? Fear.

Donald Trump Jr. is just staggeringly incompetent

Four explosive lines in Trump Jr emails

How Much More Absurdity Can You Handle?

New York Post: ‘Donald Trump Jr. is an Idiot’

US intel caught Trump team talking with Russians in 2015, before presidential campaign begins

Ordered by court to disclose his Russia contacts, [US Attorney General Jeff] Sessions releases blank piece of paper

Trump’s Russian Laundromat

George Takei: And We Thought Eric Trump Was the Stupid One

Eric Trump Just Attacked Keith Olbermann. Olbermann’s Response Is EPIC

Donald Trump Jr. paid attorney with funds from his father’s re-election campaign: report

Trump Cut $213 Million in Funds to Prevent Teen Pregnancy

Trump’s Favorite Pastime: Not Paying for Stuff

Trump’s Air War Has Already Killed More Than 2,000 Civilians

Given Trump’s Golf Habits, The Coast Guard Plans To Cut Off Potomac River Access

Die-hard Trump supporter struggles to name a single Trump accomplishment

Trump Team Forced To Spend Re-Election Campaign Money on Lawyers

Trump Lawyer Says Don Jr.’s Russia Meeting Was Secret Service’s Fault

OUCH: Texas paper destroys Trump’s six months in office by documenting every one of his failures

President Trump Just Broke a Startling Record in Iraq and Syria

Here’s Everything You Missed From Trump’s Inane Weekend Tweeting

Ivanka Trump Fancies Herself a Champion of ‘Women Who Work’—Tell That to Her Brand’s Factory Workers

Watch Donald Trump’s Weird Cameo in Video By Russian Pop Star at Center of Scandal

Is Trump Simply the Worst Human Being We Can Imagine? 14 Experts Weigh In

Jittery Donald Trump begs Theresa May to fix a ‘warm welcome’ for his state visit—and says he won’t set a date until he knows he’s going to get a ‘better reception’

Be wary: Trump and Putin could yet bring democracy to a halt

Fire trucks, golf clubs and double standards: Trump touts America

I’m a Lefty and I Joined a Trump Supporters Facebook Group: Here’s What I Learned

It Was Always About the Money—Russia and the Trumps: A Grift Story.

Donald Jr. Finally Relatable: Can’t Wait For His Dad’s Presidency to be Over

Trump Administration Considering Closing Office Of Cyber Security

Trump’s First Year in Office is Shaping Up to Be a Miserable Failure

Report: Russian mob money helped build Trump business empire

Trump tweets that not passing a healthcare bill was his plan all along

Could Trump Jr., Kushner, or Manafort Be Charged Under the Espionage Act?

‘Horrified’ former ethics boss reveals Trump didn’t want to verify that his own financial disclosure was true

Donald Trump Is Falling Apart

These links are current and up-to-date as of 9 a.m. Eastern Standard Time on July 20, 2017. I wouldn’t be surprised if new Trump Administration drama hits social media starting at 10 a.m.—one hour after this post goes live for the first time

The root cause of all this is simply the fact that President Trump has no prior experience yet he was elected and sworn in as president despite having zero experience. Every other U.S. president had either served in the military or had previously been elected to a lower office. Donald Trump is the first president who had done neither prior to being elected. This inexperience definitely shows at times, especially when President Trump takes to his Twitter account and tweets all kinds of crazy stuff (especially on the weekends).

What compounds this even further is that prior to his current White House gig, the only jobs he has ever held were in his family-run company. As a young employee he was immune from such things as dealing with a difficult boss or worrying about getting laid off because his father was head of the company. When he eventually succeeded his father as the company head, he really had it made because he could stay in his job as long as he wanted. He never had to be accountable to anyone who isn’t a member of his family before he moved to the White House.

Donald Trump only got as far as he did because he was born into wealth that was successively earned by his grandfather and father. If it weren’t for being born with the proverbial silver spoon in his mouth, he probably would’ve ended up being one of those sleazy used car salesman who has no hesitation about illegally changing the odometer of a used car with a 200,000 mileage and trying to pass it off to an unsuspecting buyer as a “gently used car” with only 1,000 mileage. This guy has been a classic con artist for several years.  And he continued his con during the campaign last year as he toured the Rust Belt areas telling voters what they wanted to hear while managing to convince them that he’s a Working Class Hero who’s on their side. (Never mind the fact that Trump has never lived anything that even remotely resembled a working class lifestyle.)

As for any opposition to the Trump Administration, sadly you won’t find it in the Democratic Party. The party keeps on favoring centrist Democrats (meaning they have ties to Wall Street and won’t do much to help the average American) for special elections held since last November only to get totally trounced. The most recent example happened in Montana where voters preferred a Republican who was charged with assaulting a reporter from The Guardian newspaper over a centrist Democrat. Hillary Clinton emerged from hiding for the first time since her defeat last November to claim that she was the “victim” of the assumption that she would win while throwing her erstwhile supporter and former Democratic National Committee Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz under the bus by blaming the DNC structure on her loss. Basically Hillary Clinton blamed everyone else but the fact that she ran an incredibly crappy campaign where she kept on saying that she wasn’t Donald Trump and her policy positions can be found on her website. (I saw that first debate where she basically said this and I was appalled by both her and Trump that night.)

The Democrat Party should’ve been spending the past six months articulating policy positions such as the need to repair the aging infrastructure of the nation’s bridges and tunnels (which will not only make traveling safer but can also provided much needed jobs to the unemployed and underemployed). Instead they have been mostly silent with a few exceptions (such as Elizabeth Warren) while sticking with the same centrist Republican-lite policies that led to Donald Trump’s election last November.

Here’s the reason why being a centrist Republican-lite Democrat have been a disaster for the last several years. It alienates devoted party members so much that many of them end up staying home on Election Day. Plus most Republicans are not going to spring for a Republican-lite Democrat when they can simply vote for the real thing. This is why the Democrats have lost control of the House and Senate and why they were defeated for control of the Executive Branch last November.

How bad is the current Democratic Party at being a coherent voice of the opposition to the Trump Administration? Check out what the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) have up with as a potential slogan for next year’s mid-term elections: “Democrats 2018. I mean, have you seen the other guys?” This cutesy self-deprecating ad slogan is more appropriate for advertising a movie or a TV show than a major political campaign. This is too reminiscent of Hillary Clinton’s disastrous “I am not Donald Trump” message in her ill-fated campaign. If the DCCC actually go through with that ad campaign, they will definitely ensure the re-election of Republicans to not only the House and Senate but also to the state and local governments as well. Talk about self-sabotage!

Despite the Democrat Party’s self-sabotaging itself there are some from the progressive wing of the the party who are planning to run against centrist Democrats like Senator Joe Manchin in the primaries of next year’s mid-term elections. I wish them well in their efforts even though they face an uphill battle from the entrenched centrist Democrats who, naturally, are reluctant to cede any inch of power they have accumulated themselves over the past few decades. They will also have to overcome people like the writer of this essay who are naturally skeptical that any kind of real opposition to Donald Trump can rise up from the Democrat Party.

Right now the average American person is on his/her own until a real opposition movement rises up to challenge President Trump. So far I found three things that average Americans can do until President Trump is somehow removed from office.

Amid “Constitutional Crisis,” Bernie Sanders Urges Workers to Seize the Means of Production

The Long Road to Surviving Trump Begins With…Rejecting Neoliberalism

Push President Trump off of a cliff again and again

Uber can’t be fixed—it’s time for regulators to shut it down.

A new book examines how the upper-middle class has enriched itself and harmed economic mobility.

The rise of the 21st century Victorians.

Brooklyn’s famous Green Lady explains her lifelong devotion to the color green.

The far-out sci-fi costume parties of the Bauhaus school in the 1920s.

It’s the end of the shopping mall as we know it.

How to deal with a 4Chan troll. There is some information that’s useful for anyone who’s dealing with any kind of online troll regardless of whether it involves politics or not.

Low-income workers who live in RVs are being chased out of Silicon Valley streets.

Feminist publication makes history by appointing black trans woman as editor-in-chief.

The sketchbook of drawings done in ballpoint pen by Nicolas V. Sanchez.

A look at the female pioneers of the Bauhaus art movement.

The fight for health care is really all about civil rights.

23 ways to treat yourself without buying or eating anything.

Glow-in-the-dark “toonie” coins celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary.

These bosses share the worst interviews they’ve ever seen and the results are stunning.

Browse a collection of over 83,500 vintage sewing patterns.

Bid on old computers, speakers, radios, and other junk from the bowels of RadioShack.

This transgender doll is making huge strides in teaching children about gender roles.

She took on Tesla for discrimination. Now others are speaking up.

A new kind of tech job emphasizes skills, not a college degree.

Women in tech speak frankly on the culture of harassment.

Over decades of poverty, Detroit’s have fostered a resilient informal economy based on trust.

GoFraudMe is a blog that exposes fake GoFundMe campaigns.

Rural America is the new “inner city.”

3 ways to be seen as a leader in your field.

Artist repaints mass-produced dolls to make them look realistic and the result is amazing.

Every Sega game ever made is coming to iOS and Android for free.

Edvard Munch’s famous Scream painting animated to Pink Floyd music.

Despite serving time in a Russian prison under Vladimir Putin, a member of the punk rock group Pussy Riot is still defiant.

This 106-year-old cooking show host is YouTube’s oldest creator.

On Inauguration Day, I made this post predicting that President Trump will not last past the end of his first term. One of the reasons I cited in that post is this:

9. There is the speculation about Donald Trump’s very cozy relationship with Russian leader Vladimir Putin. Recently BuzzFeed posted this report claiming that the Russians have some embarrassing evidence about The Donald that they could potentially use against him. This could cause Americans to wonder if Donald Trump really has the interests of the United States in mind and would his relationship with Russia be construed as treason.

Well this Trump-Russian connection is like an ugly boil that comes closer to coming to a head. I’ve read both sides of the debate on whether Donald Trump is really cozy with the Russians and, if so, how much? I tried to keep an open mind even though I have a personal fantasy where The Donald’s sleazy past (including allegations that he raped a 13-year-old girl and the fallout from his ill-fated Trump University) catches up with him so much that he gets taken away in handcuffs.

I’ll admit that I’m leery about seeing Russia as the enemy because I grew up with that mindset thanks to the Cold War. Not only did that Cold War led to military buildups in both nations at the expense of social programs for its citizens but both nations interfered in the internal affairs of smaller countries like El Salvador, Hungary, Honduras, Czechoslovakia, Iraq, Poland, etc. The best benefit of seeing the Iron Curtain fall back int the 1990’s was that I could openly say that I like certain Russian foods or other aspects of Russian culture without having some knee-jerk asshole accuse me of being a communist.

But given all the revelations of the issue regarding Donald Trump and the Russians, I really can’t ignore this. Golf writer James Dodson said that three years ago Eric Trump told him that his father’s company had all the funding it needs to open new golf courses thanks to the Russians. That’s on top of the alleged existence of the FSB video that shows Donald Trump and some local prostitutes partying in a Russian hotel room, the FBI wiretapping Russian gambling ring headquartered at Trump Tower in New York City, and all that is just the tip of the iceberg.

Last night Donald Trump abruptly fired FBI director James Comey while he was investigating the alleged Trump-Russian ties. This firing happened just as Comey sought more funds so he could continue his investigation. This is definitely a throwback to my childhood when Watergate was the big scandal. This firing is similar to Richard Nixon’s firing of independent special prosecutor Archibald Cox while Cox was investigating Watergate. That incident is now known in history as the Saturday Night Massacre.

Nixon’s firing of Cox happened on October 20, 1973. That firing didn’t damper the ongoing Watergate scandal one bit and it led to Nixon’s resignation on August 8, 1974—nearly 10 months later.

When I learned about Trump’s firing of Comey, Archibald Cox was the first name that popped in my mind. Last night I was posting on Facebook trying to calm down my younger friends who were freaked out over this firing by providing my own memories of Cox’s firing and Nixon’s subsequent resignation, especially since they either weren’t born or they were babies when Watergate happened.

And speaking of Watergate, here is what former Nixon White House counsel John Dean had to say about this on Twitter:

Been so busy talking I haven’t tweeted. Two options explain Trump’s Comey action & both troubling: 1) STUPID and/or 2) EVIL. I think both!

When you have a former Nixon official tweeting this, you know President Trump is in very hot water.

And the Trump-Russia connection gets even more blatant today.

In what was supposed to be a closed-door Oval Office meeting between President Donald Trump and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, pictures have emerged of meetings between President Trump, Mr Lavrov and Russian Envoy Sergey Kislyak via Russian media and Russian government social media accounts.

The Russian-sourced pictures are the only public record of the meetings as of this writing, largely because members of the White House press pool — who are charged to report on the president’s whereabouts and what happens inside the White House — were not allowed into the meeting Wednesday morning. No photos were taken by the White House press of the president’s meeting with Lavrov and with Russian Envoy Sergey Kislyak.

Right now Washington is in an uproar over this abrupt firing but, given what I know from Watergate, this firing will only intensify the accusations against President Trump just like Cox’s firing intensified the Watergate accusations against President Nixon. All we have to do is bide our time and let the experts continue to investigate Trump’s alleged connections with the Russians. If history is any guide, it may get to the point where President Trump resigns or he gets impeached and imprisoned.

In the meantime, I’m laughing over this story of press secretary Sean Spicer hiding in a bush so he could avoid the reporters who want to question him regarding President Trump’s firing of James Comey. What a coward! (LOL!)

It may sound tacky for me to post this on Inauguration Day, although it’s very fitting considering who is being sworn in as the 45th President of the United States. Heck, I found out that the BBC plans on carrying this event live because this newspaper in Scotland has this hilarious description of the event in its TV listing.

I know I’m going out on a limb here by making this prediction. But I think it’s an educated prediction that I’m qualified to make because I graduated from the University of Maryland with a B.S. degree in Journalism and a minor in Government and Politics and I try to keep up with the news as much as possible. I am well familiar with Donald Trump because I’m old enough to remember when he published his first book (The Art of the Deal) and he had the news media portray him as some kind of a business genius. I also remember the first of his multiple bankruptcies. I even watched the first few seasons of both The Apprentice and The Celebrity Apprentice. I still remember that one episode of his reality show where one of the challenges took place at the same Trump Taj Mahal (which The Donald hyped on that episode as being “state of the art”) that filed for bankruptcy just a few weeks after that episode aired. (So much for “state of the art.” LOL!)

Based on what I know about Trump and U.S. government in general, I not only believe that President Donald Trump will not last past his first term in office but there’s a chance that he may be out of office before his first term is up. Here are the reasons why I feel this way, based entirely on facts.

1. Donald Trump has never held any kind of public office before in his life. He has spent his entire career in the private sector where he never had to deal with things like checks and balances or negotiating compromises with lawmakers. To instantly become President of the United States with no public office background will involve a much steeper learning curve than usual for The Donald.

2. Donald Trump has only worked for his family-owned businesses. His first job out of college was with one of his family’s businesses and his father was the ultimate boss, unlike the vast majority of Americans who have to work for bosses who aren’t related to them. Being President of the United States means that he’ll have to learn to deal with Congress, lobbyists, and a whole bunch of other people who aren’t family members and that’ll take a huge adjustment on his part. He’s also going to have to adjust to not always getting his own way, unlike being the head of the Trump Organization, because of the whole checks and balances thing that’s built into the Constitution.

3. There are people who are openly questioning whether Donald Trump is even a legitimate president before he even takes the Oath of Office. Usually when a new person is elected president, everyone, including the opposition, have traditionally provided respect for the person until a few months after Inauguration Day. Considering the fact that Trump’s approval ratings have sank to a historic low before he has even begun occupying the Oval Office is very telling. Unless Trump can focus on doing what it takes to earn the respect of all Americans, and not just white heterosexual men, he will not last long on the job.

4. Donald Trump seems reluctant to live in the White House. He somehow didn’t realize that moving to Washington, DC and living in the White House is one of the requirements of being President of the United States. There’s no way he can govern from Trump Tower in New York City since everybody else that’s even remotely connected to the Federal Government is in Washington, DC. Heck, he can’t even live in his own Trump International Hotel in DC while he’s in office. Nope, he has to live in the White House and that can’t be negotiated.

5. He was the subject of a civil lawsuit over his failed Trump University until he settled it soon after he became president-elect. This settled lawsuit could give Congress a way to possibly look into criminal charges, thus paving the way for impeachment.

6. There are his recorded admission that he had forced women to kiss them while saying that he had to grab them by the pussy along with the numerous allegations of sexual abuse against Donald Trump ranging from sexual harassment to rape. One woman dropped her lawsuit over the allegation that Donald Trump raped her when she was 13. But it has been replaced by a defamation lawsuit that has just been filed by one of his accusers, a former Apprentice contestant named Summer Zervos. And that’s not to mention the incredibly disturbing things he has said about his own daughter, Ivanka, which The Daily Show has compiled into Don’t Forget: Donald Trump Wants to Bang His Own Daughter and Again, Don’t Forget: Donald Trump Wants to Bang His Own Daughter (which is why so many eyebrows were raised in DC when reports surfaced that Ivanka will serve as First Lady instead of The Donald’s own wife, Melania). Trump’s past behavior could be a White House sex scandal waiting to happen, especially if he does anything to any of the female White House staffers and interns, which could possibly bring on impeachment.

7. There is the reported conflict of interest between the new President Trump and his continued running of the Trump Organization, which could be another way for Congress to consider impeaching him.

8. Donald Trump is also prone to having major Twitter meltdowns, which could easily bite him in the ass at some point in the future. There are already questions about whether those Twitter tweets he continues to issue around the clock are an indication of some kind of mental health condition that The Donald is suffering from, as explained in this video.

9. There is the speculation about Donald Trump’s very cozy relationship with Russian leader Vladimir Putin. Recently BuzzFeed posted this report claiming that the Russians have some embarrassing evidence about The Donald that they could potentially use against him. This could cause Americans to wonder if Donald Trump really has the interests of the United States in mind and would his relationship with Russia be construed as treason.

10. While the Congress will be dominated by Republicans for at least the next two years, there are plenty of Republicans who aren’t so enthusiastic over President Trump (especially those who supported Trump’s opponents in the Republican primaries). More recently, Republican lawmakers have voiced disdain after Trump went on Twitter to announce that he has more faith in Wikileaks founder Julian Assange than in U.S. intelligence agencies. If Trump does things that further alienates his own party, I can imagine that they would be willing to throw him under the impeachment bus in the hopes of being replaced by President Mike Pence, who’s way more palatable to the right-wing than Trump is.

11. If President Trump really screws up his first two years in office, there’s a strong chance that progressive people can be elected to Congress in the 2018 mid-term elections—people who are more likely to oppose and obstruct President Trump every step of the way. This might give President Trump an incentive to either resign or decide not to seek a second term.

While there’s a part of me that hopes that President Trump will rise to the challenge of being in the Oval Office and actually do something for the large part of the population who are unemployed or underemployed, I am not going to hold my breath on this. I predict that one of four scenarios will happen to President Trump.

1. President Trump resigns halfway through his term in office.

2. President Trump gets impeached by Congress and removed from office halfway through his term.

3. President Trump gets assassinated. Which wouldn’t be a major stretch since he has gone out of his way to insult women, LGBTQ people, ex-POWs, disabled people, Muslims, and Latinos on the campaign trail. I could easily see some unhinged person deciding to take matters into his/her own hands and go after President Trump with a gun. I’m not the only one who wouldn’t be surprised if President Trump gets assassinated.

4. President Trump simply dies in office. At 70 years old, he is considered to be the oldest person ever elected to the nation’s highest office. Being President of the United States is the highest stress job there is and it tends to rapidly age whoever occupies the Oval Office at a faster rate than usual. It’s possible that this new job will literally kill him.

5. President Trump either decides not to seek a second term or he is defeated for re-election in 2020.

The only downside to the first four scenarios is that Mike Pence would become president and he’s a guy who’s not only an extremist when it comes to women’s reproductive health but he’s also very anti-LGBTQ rights. He’s less of a buffoon than Donald Trump, which makes him really scary. The best thing we can all hope for is the fifth scenario where a new President and Vice President can be elected and the Executive Branch can begin 2021 with a totally clean slate.

I would really love to be proven wrong about my low opinions of President Trump and he turns out to be the best president since FDR. I would be ecstatic if that happens. But I’m not going to hold my breath waiting for that to happen.

Friday the 13th

For the past few days the entire Internet has gone on a major meltdown after BuzzFeed posted this document alleging how deep President-Elect Donald Trump’s ties to Russia really are. Among the most salacious details is the allegation that the FSB has a video showing a raunchy party in Donald Trump’s hotel room where he had Russian prostitutes pee on a mattress because Barack and Michelle Obama had previously slept on that same mattress in that same room when they were in Moscow. The Taiwanese animation company TomoNews has helpfully distilled this document into this animation.

There are a few criticisms of BuzzFeed for posting this document without attempting to verify it for accuracy. Washington Babylon says that it’s thinly sourced and there are some accuracy errors. Matt Taibbi of Rolling Stone has also questioned its reliability and accuracy.

As someone who majored in Journalism and minored in Government and Politics at the University of Maryland, I’ve been following this story closely. Normally I would say “Shame on BuzzFeed for attempting such a hatchet job on a public figure!” If the target of the hatchet job had been someone like Bernie Sanders or Keith Ellison or someone whom I generally like and admire, I would be adamant about denouncing BuzzFeed for doing such a hatchet job and giving journalism a bad name.

Since the target is Donald Trump, all this story gets is a “Meh!” from me. That’s because I still remember back in 2011, when Donald Trump had flirted with running for president as a Republican, he courted the birther conspiracy theorists by questioning whether President Obama was really born in Kenya. As this New York Times headline puts it: Donald Trump Clung to ‘Birther’ Lie for Years, and Still Isn’t Apologetic. The article states further:

Much has been made of Mr. Trump’s casual elasticity with the truth; he has exhausted an army of fact-checkers with his mischaracterizations, exaggerations and fabrications. But this lie was different from the start, an insidious, calculated calumny that sought to undo the embrace of an African-American president by the 69 million voters who elected him in 2008.

I view the current unsubstantiated allegations of Donald Trump and the hookers as karma hitting him directly in his orange face. He’s getting the same taste of his own medicine that he dished out at President Obama and I’m laughing my ass off. I hope he enjoys his dose of Instant Karma. (LOL!)

talkingdonaldtrumpphotoforweb
Every day I hear news about Donald Trump and they become more horrifying by the day. From his cabinet choices (such as appointing Rick Perry head of an agency that he once called for its abolishment) to Trump’s refusal to read the daily intelligence briefings on the grounds that “I’m, like, a smart person”, it is so obvious that he is the one person who had no business of ever running for president in the first place—let alone finding people who were willing to vote for him. Donald Trump is the first president-elect in history who has no prior political or military experience. If all that weren’t enough, there are already divisions within Trump’s organization and the man hasn’t even taken office yet.

Donald Trump can’t take the time to read the daily intelligence briefings yet he can find the time to meet with people like Kanye West and Anna Wintour. He also finds the time to complain on Twitter about Alec Baldwin impersonating him on Saturday Night Live.

There have long been accusations of Trump being too cozy with Russian leader Vladimir Putin. Now there are accusations that Russian hackers may have somehow thrown the election to Donald Trump. These allegations are so serious that members of the Electoral College are demanding to see the evidence before they go to their scheduled meeting on December 19 to give the final vote on who will become the next President of the United States.

I don’t even know what to think anymore, other than the fact that I agree with the headline of this article that appeared in Teen Vogue (of all places): Donald Trump Is Gaslighting America. I am especially worried because I live pretty close to Washington, DC so I have a bird’s eye view of whatever fuckery will come down. Donald Trump is making me feel nostalgic for George W. Bush—and I thought Dubya was the worst president ever. If Donald Trump actually makes it to the White House (and that’s a big “IF”), I don’t know if the United States of America as I’ve known it all my life will survive. I’m especially not heartened by Trump’s history of multiple bankruptcies and his numerous failed companies.

By the way, I read this interesting article on Politico.com on how Hillary Clinton’s campaign totally blew the election by ignoring working class areas like Michigan. I still maintain that if the Democratic National Committee hadn’t gone out of its way to deny Bernie Sanders the nomination, Donald Trump would be going back to being a full-time celebrity pretending to be a real estate developer working in Trump Tower.

Thanks for nothing, DNC!

Passover

Free Tutorials

Are you a knitter? If so, you can now download 300 free knitting books filled with patterns that were published from 1849-2012.

Are you more into crochet than knitting? Here are 20 crochet tips and tricks that will make you a better crocheter.

Here’s a free tutorial on how to make a Native American teepee for an American Girl-sized doll that could be easily adjusted for other kinds of dolls as well for non-doll uses (such as a pet).

Here are some cool and creative ways that you can recycle plastic bags into reusable items.

Browse other free tutorials previously mentioned in this blog (along with pictures) right here.

Miscellaneous Links

Check out some rare color photographs of the old Russian Empire that were shot from 1909-1915 before the Russian Revolution.

See the first extensive photos of the Pyongyang Metro subway system (most of which were previously closed to foreigners) that were shot by a Westerner. Each station is decked out with so much art that it looks like a mini art museum.

How to access a million stunning, copyright-free antique illustrations released by the British Library.

There was a time when the late Prince changed his name to this symbol, which was impossible to pronounce. Prince’s record company sent a special symbol font on floppy disks to various media outlet so they could refer to him by that symbol in their print stories. The media responded by referring to him as The Artist Formerly Known As Prince (or TAFKAP for short). Eventually Prince ended up reverting back to his original English name and dropping the symbol (with the exception of these two special custom-built electric guitars). Thanks to the Daily Dot, there is now a way of getting that symbol font for your computer absolutely free so making your own digital Prince tribute will be a piece of cake.

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