We Resist: Day 425

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One of the difficulties in resisting the Trump administration, the Republican Congressional majority, and Republican state legislatures (plus the occasional non-Republican who obliges us to resist their nonsense, too, like we don't have enough to worry about) is keeping on top of the sheer number of horrors, indignities, and normalization of the aggressively abnormal that they unleash every single day.

So here is a daily thread for all of us to share all the things that are going on, thus crowdsourcing a daily compendium of the onslaught of conservative erosion of our rights and our very democracy.

Stay engaged. Stay vigilant. Resist.

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Earlier today by me: Fifth Bomb Destined for Austin Injures Another Person and Have I Mentioned the Media Is Failing Us? and Bernie Sanders, What Are You Even Doing This Time?

Here are some more things in the news today...

My contempt for this president cannot be measured on a scale fathomable by human intellect. What a truly disgusting person he is.


(⬆️ That was written with disdain, in case it wasn't obvious.)

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[Content Note: Gun violence; death; injury] AP/Guardian: Shooter Dead and Two Injured after Maryland High School Shooting. "Sheriff Tim Cameron of St Mary's county told a news conference the shooter and the officer both fired a round and it was not known if the officer killed the suspect. 'When the shooting took place,' Cameron said, 'our school resource officer, who was stationed inside the school, was alerted to the event and the shots being fired. He pursued the shooter and engaged the shooter, during which that engagement he fired a round at the shooter. Simultaneously the shooter fired a round as well. So, in the hours to come, in the days to come, through a detailed investigation, we will be able to determine if our SRO's round struck the shooter.' The male student was armed with a handgun, Cameron said. A female student and a male student were wounded. All three were transported to hospitals, where the shooter died. The school resource officer was not hurt."

It sounds a lot like the shooter shot at a specific girl and boy before turning the gun on himself. Fucking hell.

I hope the two students who were shot are able to recover quickly and totally from their physical injuries and have access to resources they need to heal from the trauma. I hope everyone else at the school does, too, including the safety officer.

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Carole Cadwalladr and Emma Graham-Harrison at the Guardian: Staff Claim Cambridge Analytica Ignored U.S. Ban on Foreigners Working on Elections. "The company's responsibilities under U.S. law were laid out in a lawyer's memo to the company's vice-president, Steve Bannon, British CEO Alexander Nix, and Rebekah Mercer, daughter of billionaire owner Robert Mercer, in July 2014. It made it clear that most senior and mid-level positions involving strategy, planning, fundraising, or campaigning needed to be filled by US citizens. 'Any decision maker must be a U.S. citizen or green card holder,' the memo, seen by the Observer, warned. It also provided a brief legal history of cases involving foreign involvement in election campaigns, drawn up by a lawyer at the firm founded by former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani. 'To the extent you are aware of foreign nationals providing services, including polling and marketing, it would appear that unless it is being done through U.S. citizens, or foreign nationals with green cards, the activity would violate the law.'"

That's a pretty big deal, to put it mildly. Or it would be, on another timeline in which we didn't have a traitor as a president and a goddamn sycophantic clown running the Justice Department.

Special Counsel Bob Mueller may have something to say about that, but the Republicans in Congress will crawl all over each other trying to be first to ignore it.

In related news...

Jamie Ross at the Daily Beast: 'Astonishing' Facebook Intervention Could Have Compromised Cambridge Analytica Evidence, Says U.K. "Britain's information commissioner, Elizabeth Denham, confirmed she was applying to the courts for a warrant to search Cambridge Analytica's London offices and said Tuesday morning that she has been left frustrated by the company's reluctance to cooperate with her investigation. Fears have also been raised that the investigation may have been compromised by the presence of cybersecurity consultants from Stroz Friedberg — the company hired by Facebook to audit Cambridge Analytica on its behalf — who were in the London offices on Monday evening, until they were asked to leave by the information commissioner."

Elizabeth Dwoskin and Tony Romm at the Washington Post: Facebook's Rules for Accessing User Data Lured More Than Just Cambridge Analytica.
Cambridge Analytica — unlike other firms that access Facebook's user data — broke Facebook's rules by obtaining the data under the pretense of academic use. But experts familiar with Facebook's systems and policies say that the greater problem was that the rules for accessing the social network's information trove were so loose in the first place.

Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg in 2007 invited outside developers to build their businesses off Facebook's data, giving them ready access to the friend lists, "likes," and affinities that connect millions of Facebook users. Practically any engineer who could persuade a Facebook user to download an app or to sign into a website using Facebook's popular 'log-in through Facebook' feature would have been able to access not only the profile, behavior, and location of that Facebook user but also that of all the user's Facebook friends, developers said.
[CN: Moving GIF at link] Casey Newton at the Verge: Facebook Is Losing Control of the Narrative — and Maybe the Platform. "Facebook's lack of enforcement in the face of bad actors, coupled with misuse of its platform on a grand scale, have drawn outrage around the globe. And while Cambridge Analytica is among the most prominent examples to date of how Facebook can be misused, it belongs to a long and growing list. In March alone: Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp were forced to shut down temporarily in Sri Lanka after inflammatory messages posted to the service incited mob violence against the country's Muslim minority; United Nations investigators blamed Facebook for spreading hate speech that incited violence against the Rohingya minority in Myanmar; the Facebook search bar briefly auto-filled its search bar with suggestions for porn; a far-right Italian politician credited Facebook with his party's surprising electoral victory, after reports that Russian state media used the platform to promote stories suggesting Italy faced an immigration crisis; Facebook banned far-right group Britain First, which had more than 2 million followers, for inciting violence against minorities; and Facebook's chief security officer is quitting after reportedly arguing too forcefully that the company should investigate and disclose Russian activity on the platform."

Jesus fucking Jones.

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Robert Costa and Carol D. Leonnig at the Washington Post: Trump Legal Team Seeks to Add Star GOP Attorney Theodore B. Olson. "Trump's legal team has reached out to Theodore B. Olson, one of the country's most high-profile and seasoned litigators, to join forces amid mounting challenges in the probe of Russian interference in the 2016 election, according to three people familiar with the discussions. ...Olson, 77, who served as solicitor general in the George W. Bush administration and has long been considered a legal superstar, would bring deeper ties to the Justice Department and more experience on landmark cases than any of Trump's current lawyers. Olson is said to be reviewing the offer while weighing potential conflicts with his clients at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, where he is a partner, one person close to him said." Oh.

(Honestly, they tried to get Olson before and he refused, so I think this report may be nothing more than an attempt by the Trump team to try to convince him to come aboard. Good luck! I'm sharing it nonetheless because, if Olson did join the team, it would be big news.)

Jenna McLaughlin at CNN: A Family Affair: Susan Pompeo's Active Role Raising Debate within the CIA. (Is that "debate" whether the United States has officially become a banana republic now, or...?) "Susan Pompeo, wife of Central Intelligence Agency chief Mike Pompeo, has taken on an unusually active role for a CIA spouse in agency affairs since he started the job in January 2017, regularly spending her days at the agency, traveling with her husband, and attending agency social events — seven sources with knowledge of the matter told CNN. ...While Pompeo does not technically have her own office, she frequents the seventh floor director's suite at CIA's campus in Langley, Virginia, where CIA employees often 'assist Mrs. Pompeo in various ways,' said [CIA spokesperson Ryan] Trapani." Oh.

[CN: Rape culture] Yvette Cabrera at ThinkProgress: Congress Quietly Preserves Ability to Pay Sexual Harassment Settlements with Taxpayer Money. "Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), who introduced the bipartisan Congressional Harassment Reform Act last December, said on Monday that House and Senate leadership 'stripped' provisions from the language from the spending bill at the eleventh hour. 'I am appalled that House and Senate leadership removed provisions from the omnibus bill at the last minute that would have finally brought accountability and transparency to Congress's sexual harassment reporting process,' said Gillibrand in a statement released Monday. ...However, a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), disputed Gillibrand's account that provisions of the act were on track to be included in the spending bill, according to Politico." Oh.

Darlene Superville at the AP/TPM: Melania Trump to Host Her First Ever Public Event on Cyberbullying. "Melania Trump is hosting executives from major online and social media companies to discuss cyberbullying and internet safety, more than a year after saying that would be her issue as first lady. The meeting Tuesday marks her first public event on the topic, a choice some observers have questioned given that her husband often berates people on Twitter. Amazon, Snap, Facebook, Google, and Twitter are among the companies that are expected to attend the meeting." Oh.

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And finally: I don't really give a fuck that Don Trump Jr. is getting a divorce, and I don't really give a fuck that he had an affair with a singer whom I've never heard of, but I do give some major fucks about getting laughs wherever I can get them these days, so...

Stephen A. Crockett Jr. at the Root: Is Aubrey O'Day's Song "DJT" About Her Affair With Donald Trump Jr.?
While many of us believe that Donald Trump Jr. is just an inbred walking reindeer hoof whose flirting techniques include making bacon jokes about a woman's vagina, and we are right, it turns out that he may still have been quite the ladies' man.

News broke late Monday that Trump Jr. had an affair with former Danity Kane singer Aubrey O'Day during her appearance on season 5 of his father's show Celebrity Apprentice in 2011.

Now, and I really don't know how anyone found this out, O'Day had a song called "DJT" on her 2013 album, Between Two Evils. The song is a "sultry" track in which an unnamed man breaks it to O'Day that there is no way he's leaving her to return to his family.

...Now, let's investigate this further. The song is titled "DJT." Trump Jr.'s full name is Donald John Trump Jr. The song is about a man who loves a woman but can't be with her because he's got another life.

That's it; investigation over. Of course this shit is about Donald John Trump Jr.

What have you been reading that we need to resist today?

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