We Resist: Day 887

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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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Late yesterday and earlier today by me: Trump Regime to Move Migrant Children in a Bid to Avoid Accountability for Harming Them and "Give Me Your Tired, Your Poor, Your Huddled Masses Yearning to Breathe Free..." and Primarily Speaking.

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

Donald Trump published a series of tweets directed at Iran this morning, and they are wildly, unfathomably, aggressively inappropriate, which is still a vast understatement. The tweets read:
Iran leadership doesn't understand the words "nice" or "compassion," they never have. Sadly, the thing they do understand is Strength and Power, and the USA is by far the most powerful Military Force in the world, with 1.5 Trillion Dollars invested over the last two years alone...

...The wonderful Iranian people are suffering, and for no reason at all. Their leadership spends all of its money on Terror, and little on anything else. The U.S. has not forgotten Iran's use of IED's & EFP's (bombs), which killed 2000 Americans, and wounded many more...

...Iran's very ignorant and insulting statement, put out today, only shows that they do not understand reality. Any attack by Iran on anything American will be met with great and overwhelming force. In some areas, overwhelming will mean obliteration. No more John Kerry & Obama!
No more people who aren't bellicose sadists who threaten "obliteration" of their enemies. To all decent Americans' grief and regret.

In related news... [Content Note: Video may autoplay at link] Saagar Enjeti and Jordan Fabian at the Hill: Trump: I Do Not Need Congressional Approval to Strike Iran. "Trump told Hill.TV in an exclusive interview Monday that he does not need congressional approval to strike Iran. When asked if he believes he has the authority to initiate military action against Iran without first going to Congress, Trump said, 'I do.' ...The president disputed Speaker Nancy Pelosi's (D-Calif.) assertion that he would need congressional approval for any 'hostilities' against Iran. 'I disagree,' he said. 'Most people seem to disagree.'" The fuck they do. I'm sure his cadre of sycophants do. Outside that thicket of reprobates, however, most people believe the president is not a fucking dictator.

Did anyone imagine that Putin would stop with just interfering in our election once he got away with that sans consequence? Oh. [CN: Video may autoplay at link] Tom Embury-Dennis at the Independent: Russia Contradicts Trump Administration by Saying Downed U.S. Drone Was in Iranian Airspace. "[Secretary of Russia's Security Council Nikolai Patrushev] spoke to reporters after a three-way meeting with his Russian and Israeli counterparts in Jerusalem. He said Iran — an ally of Russia — had not briefed Moscow about the incident, but that the Russian Defense Ministry had concluded the drone entered Iranian airspace."

Jennifer Jacobs at Bloomberg: Trump Muses Privately About Ending Postwar Japan Defense Pact. "Donald Trump has recently mused to confidants about withdrawing from a longstanding defense treaty with Japan, according to three people familiar with the matter, in his latest complaint about what he sees as unfair U.S. security pacts. Trump regards the accord as too one-sided because it promises U.S. aid if Japan is ever attacked, but doesn't oblige Japan's military to come to America's defense, the people said. The treaty, signed more than 60 years ago, forms the foundation of the alliance between the countries that emerged from World War II."

So Trump "mused about it privately," and yet here we are reading about it! And of course we're all meant to understand it's because Trump is always pouting about unfair our treaties are, and yet, as Olga Lautman notes on Twitter: "Just what Putin wants! Trump gets all his foreign policy ideas from the Kremlin who wants weaker or no alliances." Huh.

Say, on that note... Steven Erlanger at the New York Times: Council of Europe Restores Russia's Voting Rights.
In a decision opposed by most former Soviet-bloc countries, the parliament of the Council of Europe voted on Tuesday to end Russia's suspension, which began with the annexation of Crimea from Ukraine in 2014.

Those voting to restore Russia's full rights in the council, which is separate from the European Union, argued that if Russia left the organization — as it had threatened to do — it would deny Russian citizens the right to bring cases before the European Court of Human Rights, a part of the council.

Opponents argued that Europe was giving in to the illegal annexation of Crimea and Russia's support for separatist warfare in eastern Ukraine — and just as important, starting a process of normalizing relations with Moscow.
Does that strategy — holding the safety of marginalized people hostage in order to extort concessions and avoid accountability or any consequences at all for large-scale abuses — sound familiar to anyone else? Because it should.

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[CN: Nativism; child abuse]

Nancy Cook at Politico: Trump Is Tiring of Mulvaney. "In recent weeks, Trump has been snapping at his acting chief of staff with some frequency, and expressing greater frustration with him than usual, according to four current and former senior administration officials. Trump has long said that he prefers the flexibility offered by temporary titles, but Mulvaney's ongoing 'acting' status underscores the uphill battle he faces as Trump's third chief of staff in less than two-and-a-half years. While Mulvaney is not in danger of losing his job any time soon, officials stressed, Trump's treatment of him still signals to aides the slow deterioration of their relationship has begun."

Greg Sargent at the Washington Post: Our Next Election Is Dangerously Vulnerable, a Top Democrat Warns.
[Donald] Trump is set to meet with Vladimir Putin at the Group of 20 this week, and one big question is whether Trump will warn the Russian leader against launching another attack on our political system.

We can guess the answer to that — he won't, because he stands to benefit. But that should renew attention to the steps we could be taking to fortify our elections against outside interference, but aren't, largely because Trump doesn't want us to, and because Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) is blocking many such efforts.

The causes for worry are mounting.

...Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), a member of the Intelligence Committee, has played a lead role in studying the threat of more election interference.

...The Plum Line: What do you fear most in elections to come?

Wyden: As of today, the election interference of 2020 by hostile foreign powers — and I'm not just talking about the Russians — is going to make 2016 look like small potatoes.

Paul LeBlanc at CNN: Warren Introduces New Election Security Plan. "Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren on Tuesday released a new election security and voter fraud protection plan aimed to 'secure our elections from all threats, foreign and domestic.' 'Our elections should be as secure as Fort Knox,' the senator from Massachusetts wrote in a Medium post outlining the multi-pronged plan. 'But instead, they're less secure than your Amazon account.'"

A great and necessary idea — which chief Democracy Killer Mitch McConnell will ensure goes absolutely nowhere. Sob.

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[CN: Sexual violence; rape apologia] Cristina Cabrera at TPM: Trump Denies Carroll Sexual Assault Accusation by Claiming 'She's Not My Type'. "Donald Trump denied writer E. Jean Carroll's allegation of sexual assault by stating that 'she's not my type' on Monday. 'I'll say it with great respect: Number one, she's not my type. Number two, it never happened,' Trump told the Hill. 'It never happened, okay?'" JFC he is such a foul specimen. I hate him mightily.

[CN: Toxic masculinity; entitlement; gun violence; child abuse] Ben Kesslen at NBC News: California Man Shoots 10-Month-Old Girl in Head After Her Mother Rejects Him, Police Say. "A 10-month-old girl is recovering in Fresno, California, after being shot in the head by a man who made unwanted sexual advances toward her mother. Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer said Deziree Menagh, 18, brought her young daughter, Fayth Percy, to a social gathering Saturday night where Marcos Echartea, 23, made advances toward her. Echartea grabbed her hand, tried to pull Menagh into him, and told her to sit on his lap, police said. The two barely knew each other, having met for the first time a week earlier. Uncomfortable with Echartea's advances, Menagh left the party in a car with Fayth and a friend. ...Echartea fired three rounds into the driver's window, one hitting Fayth in the head."

[CN: War on agency] Erin Heger at Rewire.News: Texas GOP Outlaws Local Governments from Having 'Any Transaction' with Abortion Providers. "Senate Bill 22, signed into law this month by Gov. Greg Abbott (R), takes effect September 1. The legislation prohibits cities, counties, and local governments from conducting 'any transaction' with an abortion provider or its affiliates — including leases, sales, and donations of real estate, goods, and services. 'What these statewide leaders are saying is that local entities no longer have the capacity to steward their community resources in the way that they see fit,' Autumn Keiser, director of communications and marketing for Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas, told Rewire.News."

If you don't see the through-line between all three of the above stories, I don't even know what to tell you.

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[CN: Climate crisis; class warfare] Damian Carrington at the Guardian: 'Climate Apartheid': UN Expert Says Human Rights May Not Survive. "The world is increasingly at risk of 'climate apartheid,' where the rich pay to escape heat and hunger caused by the escalating climate crisis while the rest of the world suffers, a report from a UN human rights expert has said. Philip Alston, UN special rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, said the impacts of global heating are likely to undermine not only basic rights to life, water, food, and housing for hundreds of millions of people, but also democracy and the rule of law."

This speaks to my Ark Theory, in which oligarchs are using the climate crisis as their own modern-day "Noah's Ark" to escape the threat of overpopulation.

Douglas MacMillan at the Washington Post: Data Brokers Are Selling Your Secrets: How States Are Trying to Stop Them. "A state law passed last year required all businesses that trade data on Vermont's residents to register publicly and share some basic information about how they operate. ...The experiment in Vermont is being closely watched at a time when regulators across the country are trying to address growing concerns over online privacy. A California law set to take effect at the beginning of next year will allow the state's residents to opt out of having their data sold. Maine passed a law this month barring Internet service providers, including AT&T and Verizon, from selling broadband customers' information. State legislatures in New York, Maryland, and Massachusetts are all considering measures to give residents more control over data."

One wee fly in the ointment... Jamie Ross at the Daily Beast: Federal Agencies Left Private Data Open to Cyberattacks for a Decade, Says Senate Report. "Multiple federal agencies kept up an outdated security system over the past decade that left Americans' personal information vulnerable to theft, according to a damning new Senate report out Tuesday. The Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations found the failures came from the Departments of State, Homeland Security, Health and Human Services, Transportation, Education, Agriculture, Housing and Urban Development, and the Social Security Administration." Terrific.

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

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