We Resist: Day 540

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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: Trump Blasts Theresa May on His Wrecking Ball Tour Through Europe and Rosenstein Announces New Indictments.

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

Caitlin MacNeal at TPM: Trump Bashes CNN, NBC at Press Conference with Theresa May. "When NBC's Kristen Welker asked Trump about his comments bashing his NATO allies, including May, Trump accused Welker of misrepresenting what he said. 'That's such dishonesty reporting because — of course that happens to be NBC which is possibly worse than CNN, possibly,' he declared before answering the question. Later, CNN's Jim Acosta attempted to ask trump a question, and Trump refused to take a question from the network and instead called on Fox News' John Roberts. 'No, no. John Roberts. Go ahead. CNN's fake news,' Trump said. 'I don't take questions from CNN — CNN is fake news. I don't take questions from CNN. John Roberts of Fox. Let's go to a real network. John, let's go.'"

Donald Trump has been waging a war on the press since virtually the moment he announced his candidacy in July 2015, and yet still the press behave like absolute cowards when he does stuff like this.

The way Trump talked to Welker and Acosta was shameful. The rest of the reporters should have got up and walked out en masse in protest of an authoritarian waging war on one of their colleagues. Instead, they were silent — and he went on to bully another reporter into removing his hat.

So afraid to lose their access that they'll let us all lose a free press instead.

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Carol E. Lee, Courtney Kube, and Geoff Bennett at NBC News: Pentagon Goes into 'Damage Control' Mode to Reassure NATO Allies. "Hours after [Donald] Trump departed NATO headquarters Thursday, U.S. military leaders embarked on a full-scale 'damage control' operation with calls to their counterparts across Europe to reassure them that America will abide by its defense commitments in the region. ...The overall message from senior military officials in a series of phone calls to members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization has been that U.S. military bases in their countries will remain open and American troop levels in the region will not be reduced." JFC.

[Content Note: War on agency; chipping away at Roe] Jessica Glenza at the Guardian: How Anti-Abortion Activists Use Cutting Edge Science to Justify Ever Stricter Laws. "Dr Edward Bell treats the tiniest babies at University of Iowa children's hospital, pre-term infants who weigh one pound or less, and whose chances of survival are minute. One of his pet projects is tracking the smallest in the world, which sometimes attracts attention from abortion opponents. ...Joni Ernst, the fiercely anti-abortion Republican U.S. senator from Iowa, sent her staffers to interview Bell. Of interest was an article published in the , which reignited debate about whether infants as young as 22 weeks old may survive if aggressively treated. 'Of course their interest was in how it might apply to this political issue,' said Bell, referring to abortion rights. 'Although they didn't actually come out and say that,' he said, he believes their interest was clear: 'What does this mean for restricting women's access to abortion?'"

Carol D. Leonnig, Josh Dawsey, and Ashley Parker at the Washington Post: Jared Kushner Lacks Security Clearance Level to Review Some of the Nation's Most Sensitive Intelligence in White House Role. "For the first year of the Trump administration, Kushner had nearly blanket access to highly classified intelligence, even as he held an interim security clearance and awaited the completion of his background investigation. But when White House security officials granted him a permanent clearance in late May, he was granted only 'top secret' status — a level that does not allow him to see some of the country's most closely guarded intelligence, said the people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss security issues."

Exactly so. Further to that: Kushner shouldn't have any clearance at all. He repeatedly lied on his financial disclosure forms, obliging multiple revisions, which is a federal crime. He shouldn't even have a job in federal government, no less a security clearance.

Speaking of people who collude with Russia...

Here's one of many terrific passages from the above article: "In May 2018, the Stein campaign also paid $9,325 in attorney fees to Miller & Chevalier. In August 2017, Politico described it as 'a boutique firm in Washington' that had taken on the case of Paul Manafort, the former Trump campaign chairman. Manafort, accused of by special counsel Robert Mueller of money laundering, is currently in jail." Yeah. Stein is using he same attorneys as Manafort. Cool.

Still on the subject of Russian collaborators...

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Ari Ezra Waldman at Towleroad: SCOTUS Nominee Brett Kavanaugh's Other Radical Views. "Judge Brett Kavanaugh is not only a threat to a woman’s right to choose and to LGBTQ equality. He is a danger to the government's ability to regulate pretty much anything. ...Judge Kavanaugh has also staked out a radically conservative approach to gun rights. ...As a judge on the DC Circuit, Kavanaugh has written or dissented in many cases involving the environment. In almost all of them, he has sought to rein in the power of the Obama-era EPA. Kavanaugh also has a broad view of executive power. ...In labor and employment law cases, Kavanaugh favors big business. ...Kavanaugh is at the extreme right of the legal community, and he is about to cement an extreme right majority on the Supreme Court." I highly recommend heading over the read this entire piece. I know this sentiment has become trite in the Trump Era, but it may be even worse than you'd imagined.

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[CN: Nativism; abuse] Eugene Robinson at the Washington Post: The Trump Administration Kidnapped Children; Someone Should Go to Jail.
The Trump administration's kidnapping — that's the proper word — of the children of would-be migrants should be seen as an ongoing criminal conspiracy. Somebody ought to go to jail.

Under a federal court order, all 103 children under the age of 5 who were taken from their families at the border were supposed to be returned by Tuesday. The government missed that deadline, and I wish U.S. District Judge Dana M. Sabraw, who issued the order, had held somebody in contempt. One candidate would be Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, who on Tuesday had the gall to describe the administration's treatment of immigrant children as "one of the great acts of American generosity and charity."

...Given that the intention from the beginning was clearly to frighten and intimidate would-be migrants from Central America, why should anyone believe that the administration is acting or speaking in good faith now? Why should we accept at face value that exactly 103 children under 5 were seized? How can we be sure there is only one case in which officials can't find or identify the parents? Given that it has taken weeks to return just 57 children, what is the likelihood the government kept adequate records?

This is an administration, after all, that conducts immigration court proceedings, or travesties, in which children too young to know their ABCs are expected to represent themselves without the benefit of legal counsel. Imagine your 3-year-old child or grandchild in that situation. Now tell me how adopting child abuse as a policy is supposed to Make America Great Again.

...I don't think they know how many kids they ripped away from their families, and I believe it is inevitable some children will never again see their parents. The fact that my government would commit such a crime weighs on my conscience as an American. [Donald] Trump and his accomplices, from all appearances, couldn't be prouder.
Tell me how adopting child abuse as a policy is supposed to Make America Great Again. Indeed.

[CN: Nativism; abuse] Bob Ortega at CNN: Migrants Describe Hunger and Solitary Confinement at For-Profit Detention Center. "The Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, Washington, which US Immigration and Customs Enforcement said held 1,495 detainees as of June 30, sits within a toxic sludge field and EPA Superfund site where residential construction has been barred. It has been the target of more than a dozen hunger strikes in recent years, each involving from a dozen to hundreds of detainees, over complaints of inadequate food and medical care, among other issues. Its operator, Florida-based The GEO Group, is fighting two lawsuits in Washington over alleged labor-law violations for a dollar-a-day migrant detainee work program it calls voluntary. And the center has in recent years faced one of the highest number of complaints about alleged physical and sexual assaults against detainees of any facility of its kind in the nation, according to US Immigration and Customs Enforcement data obtained through public records requests by the advocacy group Freedom for Immigrants."

[CN: Nativism; abuse; self-harm] Elham Khatami at ThinkProgress: Mexican National Commits Suicide While in ICE Custody in Georgia. "Forty-year-old Efrain De La Rosa, a Mexican national who was held in an ICE detention facility in Georgia, committed suicide and was pronounced dead late Tuesday evening, making him the eighth person in ICE custody to die in the 2018 fiscal year. The Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency confirmed De La Rosa's death in a press release Thursday afternoon. His death is the third at the Stewart Detention Facility in Lumpkin, Georgia in only 15 months, according to nonprofit advocacy organization Project South." My condolences to his family and friends. I am so sorry.

[CN: Nativism; anti-Blackness] Shamira Ibrahim at NYMag: Patricia Okoumou and the Threat to Black Immigrants. "The effects have been particularly acute for Black immigrants, who are one of the fastest growing demographics in the United States. Since 28 percent of Sub-Saharan African immigrants have entered the nation as refugees or asylees between 2000 and 2013 — statuses that can only be applied for upon entry to the U.S. — the family-separation policy poses significant risk to Black immigrant populations. ...Adding to the problems faced by black refugees and asylees is the pending expiration of the eligibility to live and work in the United States via Temporary Protected Status for many countries. ...Black immigrants face the dual threat of bias in the criminal-justice system and cruelty in the immigration and deportation system. ...As a result, more than 20 percent of all noncitizens who face deportation on criminal grounds are black, and black people are ultimately deported at a higher rate."

[CN: Anti-Blackness; white supremacy; class warfare]

[CN: Anti-Blackness; police misconduct] Sophie Weiner at Splinter: Florida Police Department Allegedly Told Officers to Frame Black People. "Biscayne Park, a suburb north of Miami, is at the center of a scandal over police corruption that has led to the indictment in federal court of former police chief Raimundo Atesiano and two officers, according to an exhaustive report from the Miami Herald. They are charged with falsely accusing a teenager of four burglaries in order to improve the town's crime stats. An investigation into the police department from 2014 included many more disturbing details of the department's practices. The Herald writes: 'Records obtained by the Miami Herald suggest that during the tenure of former chief Raimundo Atesiano, the command staff pressured some officers into targeting random black people to clear cases. 'If they have burglaries that are open cases that are not solved yet, if you see anybody black walking through our streets and they have somewhat of a record, arrest them so we can pin them for all the burglaries,' one cop, Anthony De La Torre, said in an internal probe ordered in 2014.'"

[CN: Racism; gaslighting] Staff at the Grio: Angela Rye Bursts into Tears While Talking About Racism on CNN. "'At this point I'm emotional. We're constantly gas lit. I'm told everyday that I'm on air that I'm racist because I call out racism. That is maddening to me. ...We're supposed to be talking about a 12-year-old boy who was just trying to deliver newspapers and the police are called on him in Ohio where Tamir Rice was killed and the same age. I want to be acknowledged and seen that this is not okay for our children. This is not okay for the future direction of this country,' Rye said."

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

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