King of The Jews

Our world-savior president, Donald J. Trump, recently embraced the exalted new name bestowed on him by tweet (by an impressive maniac in his own right) and doubling down on that inspired compliment (Trump’s only move in any situation) referred to himself (with a point at the heavens above) as “the Chosen One.”   Done and done.  The best friend the Jews ever had, since Reinhard Heydrich, and I say this as a Jew. 

The messianic president should be on guard now, I think.    I say this as a Jew, as a loyal American, as someone with Google on his phone.    Last I heard, things did not go well for the last person to wear that “King of the Jews” crown (which was made of thorns).   Y’all remember Jesus of Nazareth, “King of the Jews”?    Just type “King of the Jews” into your smartphone and you get this:

The acronym INRI represents the Latin inscription IESVS NAZARENVS REX IVDÆORVM (Iesus Nazarenus, Rex Iudaeorum), which in English translates to “Jesus the Nazarene, King of the Jews” (John 19:19).         source

That mysterious INRI on the sign shown in many old paintings of Jesus being crucified stands for “Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews”.   It was a final vicious mockery of the Prince of Peace, a flicker of that old Roman sense of humor. 

Likely suggested, as we are told by devout men, by the hateful “disloyal” Jews of the time, Jews that Christians soon blamed for the crucifixion of God’s son (the alternate story, that Jesus was executed by the Roman authorities, would not have been popular in Rome — and Rome controlled most of the world’s known population at the time).   Hey, it’s all about P.R., after all, if you plan to proselytize widely and become a major world religion.

It is not known whether the crucified in 33 A.D. King of the Jews had a sense of humor.  I like to think Jesus did.  It is a mark of a gentle character, to see the humor in things.  Laughing together is a beautiful way of bonding, a blessed moment of relief from oppression of every kind, a gentle reminder to be humble.   Of course, a talent for laughter is also the mark of a good Nazi, the comradely ability to see the undeniable humor in the wretched humiliation of a hated enemy.   The jury, I suppose, must be eternally out on whether INRI had a sense of humor.

A thought about humor, and who laughs, and why:  

“Indelible in the hippocampus is the laughter. The uproarious laughter between the two, and their having fun at my expense.” [1]

Humor is clearly a double-edged sword. 

Seriously, then, our president, The Chosen One, an “extremely stable genius” (with an historically gigantic member), tweeted that he is not going to Denmark next week because he was insulted that his ridiculous proposal that the United States buy Greenland was characterized by the Danish prime minister as “abzurd”.   Greenland, by the way, is one of the places on earth where global warming is happening at a disastrously higher rate than predicted.

“‘Abzurd’,” the president repeated in disgust, quoting the mortal insult again, a moment before characterizing the Danish prime minister, a woman, as “nasty”.   

Donald King of the Jews knows a lot about nasty, vindictive, hateful bitches, always the victims, always blaming him because they are sexy, or good looking, or ugly, or powerful, or smart, or incisive, or use a word, or a tone, that wounds him.  The real victim is always the savior of mankind, about to be crucified by really unfair, totally conflicted, disloyal, nasty witch hunting bitches of both sexes, of many sexes.

I would love to be undistracted, to concentrate, back inside my imagination and my memory, on the things I need to write.   There are things in my mind much more compelling than the most recent ass-tweetings of an unstable attention-craving idiot.

My sister, for example, at the age of three or so, grabbed the largest pointed knife in the kitchen, a long, sharp meat slicer with a white handle, and plunged it toward me.  I backed away quickly without turning around, backpedalled out of the kitchen, five years old myself.   She followed a step behind, holding the large knife in front of her, tottering unsteadily forward on her tiny feet as fast as she could.   I was afraid to turn my back on her to flee up the stairs.   The pursuit ended in the front closet, me somehow backed inside it, against the coats as my sister brandished the knife, thrusting it forward, smiling fiendishly.    Why did I not simply overpower her, take the knife?   I was afraid of blood, of the aggression of this tiny child, afraid that either of us might be spouting blood out of a severed artery if a struggle over the large knife took place.  Afraid.

A friend told me that some of my writing in the first draft of the memoir of my father was “extreme”.   She was hard pressed to explain why she felt that way, beyond that it was just too brutally honest, and the conversation veered into other subjects before I could learn more.    Weeks later I read an old piece that was pretty good, but contained an objectively extreme phrase, describing my father’s angry stare as “the unblinking mask of a psychotic” or something like that.   Extreme.  My father was not psychotic, not by any definition. 

Not only was it not a good description of his face at that moment, it was a weak and distracting one, a lazy one.    It betrayed unrestrained emotion, undermined my credibility and instantly pulled the reader away from the more important truth I should have been establishing: my father, a good man, smart, funny, sensitive and idealistic, was eternally desperate and it was this desperation that kept him on guard and frequently enraged at his children.   

How the story is told is very, very important for passing on the intended message, the discovered insight.   One sloppy stroke and the reader is rightfully distracted, shakes her head “fucking guy, pretty interesting piece, but he lost me there” and then on to the next link.

Instead of making forward progress in my own life of leisure and genteel poverty (I can live without working as long as I don’t spend much money), I drink my coffee while reviewing a few events that made the news since last night.    The NY Times reports that the president called any Jew who was prepared to vote against him “ignorant” and “very disloyal”.   I know this guy simply talks out of his face and his ass interchangeably (no comment about his breath) but found that I had to read a little about it.  Which led to a youTube clip, which led to another, which led to an article and so on.

Back to the King of the Jews and disloyalty to him.   My father had a colleague and good friend named Evelyn, who later became a hated former friend and former colleague.   I  looked her up decades later and we began a correspondence.  Evelyn had converted to Judaism in the intervening years and was trying to convince me that then-presidents Bush and Cheney, the neoCons and the Evangelical right, were the best friends of Israel and all Jews.   The invasion and occupation of Iraq was very good for Israel, she argued.  The one-time socialist scholar was not very persuasive, she was unsuccessful in her mission to convert me to extreme right wing politics, in the name of Judaism and what is best “for the Jews”.   An  old saw:  two Jews in an elevator, five strenuous differences of opinion.  

An old joke, by way of  illustration:   Two Jews are stranded on a desert island for many years.  When the rescue boat finally arrives the rescuers find the two Jews have built three synagogues on the island.  “I don’t understand,” says a rescuer, “there are two Jews, why three synagogues?”   The Jews point to the third synagogue and answer, in one voice, “nobody goes to that one.”

There are Jews today who, to me, are indistinguishable from Nazis in their core beliefs, which include a righteous, well-justified refusal to regard “enemies” as human beings.   If you sincerely believe that every Palestinian two year-old is a hate-filled terrorist you might as well let them live in open air prisons until they are old enough to shoot with live ammunition at the border fence.    

If you believe, as Jews have long been urged to do by our tradition, in the importance of protecting the weak, being hospitable to the stranger among us (a tradition modern-day desert nomads still practice), you will have a much different attitude toward the suffering of any child, Palestinian babies, Israeli babies or the tiny children (and their parents) in the privately owned for-profit hell-holes that Trump’s ICE uses to keep stinking, unwashed human asylum seekers in cages.  

It is only a Nazi type who justifies inflicting  this kind of suffering on others, wholly innocent of anything themselves, insisting their victims deserve their cruel fate because they are part of an infestation of an invasive species of subhuman.   That’s Nazi shit, my friend.

To me, speaking as an American Jew, this self-appointed King of the Jews, seriously, is more like the fancy King of the Very Fine Nazis, the finest Nazis, some very, very fine Nazis.  Hey, what a cool idea: a King of the Nazis!  I guess you could also call that heaven appointed ruler the Fuhrer.  Got a nice ring to it, I think.

Nazi fucks…



[1]    Senator Leahy:  “You’ve never forgotten them laughing at you.”

Blasey Ford “They were laughing with each other.”

Leahy:  “And you were the object of the laughter?”

Blasey Ford  “I was underneath one of them, while the two laughed.”


A few last thoughts from Shoshana Zuboff’s The Age of Surveillance Capitalism

which I must transcribe for you now, since the overdue tome I’m holding on to must go back to the library now.  Shoshana Zuboff writes: 

As Hayek [Friedrich Hayek, influential radical free-market economist – ed.] told Robert Bork in a 1978 interview, “i’m operating on public opinion.  I don’t even believe that before public opinion has changed, a change in the law will do any good… the primary thing is to change opinion…”  [1] 

Indeed, and this has been a longtime project of the movers and shakers of the radical right for literally decades, since at least 1978.  Changing public opinion needs to be everyone else’s project now, and going forward.

Shosahana Zuboff:

When I speak to my children or an audience of young people, I try to alert them to the the historically contingent nature of “the thing that has us” by calling attention to ordinary values and expectations before surveillance capitalism began its campaign of psychic numbing.   “It’s not OK to have to hide in your own life; it is not normal,” I tell them.  “It is not OK to spend your lunchtime conversations comparing software that will camouflage you and protect you from continuous unwanted invasion.”  Five trackers blocked. Four trackers blocked.   Fifty-nine trackers blocked, facial features scrambled, voice disguised.    

I tell them that the word “search” has meant a daring existential journey, not a finger tap to already existing answers; that “friend” is an embodied mystery that can be forged only face-to-face and heart-to-heart; and that “recognition” is the glimmer of homecoming we experience in our beloved’s face, not “facial recognition.”  I say that it is not OK to have our best instincts for connection, empathy, and information exploited by a draconian quid pro quo that holds these goods hostage to the pervasive strip search of our lives.  It is not OK for every move, emotion, utterance, and desire to be catalogued, manipulated, and then used to surreptitiously herd us through the future tense for the sake of someone else’s profit.  “These things are brand-new,” I tell them.  “They are unprecedented.  You should not take them for granted because they are not OK.”   [2]


[1] p. 520   

[2]  p. 521

from The Age of Surveillance Capitalism:  The Fight for A Human Future at the New Frontier of Power     (c) 2019  Shoshana Zuboff  —  published by Hatchette Book Group

 my “review” of this masterpiece by Shoshana Zuboff

The Right to the Future Tense

This is from Shoshana Zuboff’s important “The Age of Surveillance Capitalism”.  These first few paragraphs of the chapter called “The Right to the Future Tense” leaped out at me as a profoundly evocative description of a writer’s world:

I wake early.  The day begins before I open my eyes.  My mind is in motion.  Words and sentences have streamed through my dreams, solving problems on yesterday’s pages.  The first work of the day is to retrieve those words that lay open a puzzle.  Only then am I ready to awaken my senses.   I try to discern each birdcall in the symphony outside of our windows: the phoebe, redwing, blue jay, mocking bird, woodpecker, finch, starling and chickadee.   Soaring above all their songs are the cries of geese over the lake.  I splash warm water on my face, drink cool water to coax my body into alertness, and commune with our dog in the still-silent house.   I make coffee and bring it into my study, where I settle into my desk chair, call up my screen, and begin.   I think.  I write these words. and imagine you reading them.  I do this every day of every week– as I have for several years, and it is likely that I will continue to do so for one or two years to come.

I watch the seasons from the windows above my desk: first green, then red and gold, then white, and then back to green again.   When friends come to visit, they peek into my study.   There are books and papers stacked on every surface and most of the floor.  I know they feel overwhelmed at this sight, and sometimes I sense that they silently pity me for my obligation to this work and how it circumscribes my days.  I do not think that they realize how free I am.  In fact, I have never felt more free.   How is this possible?

I made a promise to complete this work.   This promise is my flag planted in the future tense. It represents my commitment to construct a future that cannot come into being should I abandon my promise.   This future will not exist without my capacity first to imagine its facts and then to will them into being.  I am an inchworm moving with determination and purpose across the distance between now and later.   Each tiny increment of territory that I traverse is annexed to the known world, as my effort transforms uncertainty into fact.   Should I renege on my promise, the world would not collapse.   My publisher would survive the abrogation of our contract.  You would find many other books to read.  I would move on to other projects. 

My promise, though, is an anchor that girds me against the vagaries of my moods and temptations.  It is the product of my will to will and a compass that steers my course toward a desired future that is not yet real.  Events may originate in energy sources outside my will and abruptly alter my course in ways that I can neither predict nor control.   Indeed, they have already done so.   Despite this certain knowledge of uncertainty, I have no doubt that I am free.   I can promise to create a future, and I can keep my promise.  If the book that I have imagined is to exist in the future, it must be because I will it so.  I live in an expansive landscape that already includes a future that only I can imagine and intend.   In my world, this book I write already exists.  In fulfilling my promise, I make it manifest.  This act of will is my claim to the future tense.  

To make a promise is to predict the future; to fulfill a promise through the exercise of will turns that prediction into fact.  Our hearts pump blood, our kidneys filter that blood, and our wills create the future in the patient discovery of each new sentence or step.   This is how we claim our right to speak in the first person as the author of our futures. (…)


from The Age of Surveillance Capitalism:  The Fight for A Human Future at the New Frontier of Power   (pp.   329-330)   (c) 2019  Shoshana Zuboff  —  published by Hatchette Book Group

 my “review” of this masterpiece by Shoshana Zuboff

Time marches on

Thoughts clogged, stagnant, the metal of this laptop uncomfortably warm under my hands.   It’s not the heat, I tell myself, or even this impressive humidity the fan is pushing against me, slapping stickily up against my side.   Sure it’s 99 or more up here, OK, but still.    Isn’t human imagination up to this?

Human imagination is not up to this.    When your basic needs at the bottom of Maslow’s pyramid of human needs are not met, it’s hard for thoughts to take wing and soar.   After a while all you can think about is your thirst, if you’re parched long enough, or your hunger, if you haven’t eaten in a while.  That’s part of the hellish trap of poverty, very hard to get to the highest levels of creativity and potential when you’re urgently looking for a place to go to the bathroom without being arrested, or killed.  

At noon I was watching a summary of some of the day’s news, news of a world gone mad, in free fall, crowds chanting incoherently.   Then I stumbled on a guitar player named Josh Smith, playing the hell out of a guitar, explaining the beautiful things he was doing in a way that made only so much sense.   Left out of the explanation were the thousands of hours, and the hunger, to get all that under your fingers, into your playing.   Then there was more news about Jeffrey Epstein’s death, new details from his autopsy, apparently.   That’s what the teaser for the youTube clip said, with a picture of fucking Bagpiper Bill Barr, firing somebody, or ordering the speedy federal execution of somebody else.   Now, I see, it is 3:51, day spent mostly in this chair, and I’m as listless as I was before lunch, a delicious salad.

Imagine the place hotter still.   The ice of the great northern ice caps is disappearing at a much faster rate than predicted, shearing off cliffs of melting ice in huge chunks.   Mosquitos are now born year-round, thirstier than ever, they have even started sucking on my previously unappetizing flesh, leaving giant, itchy welts where the large veins are closest to the surface.   One species after another of the  little predators who used to eat the mosquitos are disappearing along with the sheets of ice that shear off ever smaller cliffs of it and splash into the sea to melt.  It’s all connected, all this destruction, denial, distraction. 

The world does not care, as it all crashes into the sea amid thousands of tons of discarded plastic.   Birds choke, seals drown, entire species are wiped out, every fish eats micro-plastic, which becomes part of the flesh we eat when the big fish we like to eat have eaten generations of ever smaller micro-plastic eaters.  

My teeth are shifting in my mouth, half of them already sideways and brittle as crystal made of sugar.  I think about the world people being born now are going to be living in.  I think about the unquestionable, heedless powers that make sure nothing is more important than their unquestionable, heedless powers.   I read history, helpless to cause so much as a ripple in its progress.

One day even hotter than this, perhaps, will be the last day for older people like me.  Simply too fucking hard to breathe, yo, time to give it all up.   Then the arguments over my millions will begin, by the many who will rush forward to make a claim on my fortune.   I probably should have put it into writing that it should all be invested in the building of a monument to me, for my perpetual memory, you understand.   So that one day cockroaches, the only ones left here on the earth, may wonder “what is this fucking huge thing?”.  Insect awe optional.

Family is the most important thing

Although most mass murders happen within families,  as a ten second scan of the internet will show [1], fratricide, parricide and filicide are not the most common forms of murder, thankfully.    (Although 100% of all incest happens in families, by definition.)    In many families lifelong grudges stand in for murder.   My family, for example, has generally practiced this humane alternative to actual killing (those few outliers who survived the actual mass killings of 1943, that is).    Even within devastated, crazy, dysfunctional families, the common refrain is that there is nothing more important than family– except possibly keeping your insane fucking aunt as far from us as possible.

Sekhnet’s mother’s best friend for many years (they had a terrible falling out years later) was the sister of a woman married to a dynamic first generation Italian man named Uncle Tony.   Uncle Tony and his wife had no children of their own, but exerted a great influence on so far three generations of their nieces and nephews.   They hosted them every summer at their summer place near the beach, put them to work and instilled their values deep within these kids.   The youngest of these kids are now in their seventies, having passed the values on to their children and grandchildren.

The third weekend in August every year, for the last 65, is the Italian Picnic.   Family and friends would arrive on Long Island by the dozens, pitch tents, sleep in cars, in curtain-divided cubicles in the original cabin with Uncle Tony and his wife, in the “overflow”, a handmade structure in the back that housed an additional ten or so in various compartments.  Behind the overflow was the outdoor shower.   The sign over the toilet read “in these isles of sun and fun, we never flush for number one.”

Sekhnet attended the first Italian Picnic “in utero” as she likes to say.   She went that first time as a four month-old fetus (perhaps she was still an embryo, I’d have to look it up) and has missed only one or two in the following six and a half decades. I’ve been going every year since 2001, when I drove Sekhnet and her aged parents to the picnic when Sekhnet had a medical problem that prevented her from driving the 80 miles or so.    

I was welcomed warmly and instantly by this large, gregarious family.   It was beautiful to be in a gathering where everyone seemed to genuinely love, or at least like, each other.   The food was great, the controlled chaos of the festivities was cool, and there were several colorful characters that made these picnics a lot of fun.

Over the years I got to know a unique character named Louie, a truly larger than life nephew of Uncle Tony’s.   He was a jovial, powerfully built former cop with flowing white hair, impressive facial hair, an even more impressive belly and a great talent for storytelling.

Some years he’d drink everyone under the table (the table was in a thatched tiki bar across the dirt yard from the main house) while telling an endless series of detailed and often very funny stories.   Some years he didn’t drink at all, like the year he fasted, passing up the dozens of trays of delicious Italian delicacies, all that pasta, and seafood, and lasagna, and all the rest, including the table of homemade desserts.  He explained that he was doing this for his self-discipline and also as part of a purifying detox he’d been doing for a few days.   Early the next morning he broke his purifying fast with an enormous bacon sandwich he devoured standing over the outdoor breakfast griddle, cooking breakfast.  

One year early in my tenure, during a year when Louie was drinking, I first heard his stories,  They continued late into the night as one inebriated younger person after another staggered off to turn in.  He was in charge of the blender at the tiki bar and he induced me to drink perhaps ten delicious frozen drinks of some kind.   He drank at least that many himself, as one by one every other drinker mumbled good night, shuffled off, fell over.

I was the second to last man standing that night, kind of, I tottered off to sleep after slurring a goodnight to Louie. To my amazement, I saw (while up briefly to pee) that Louie was the first guy up in the morning, putting the coffee on, (in the big, dented aluminum drip urn), before anybody else was up, cheerfully at work out at the makeshift workstation near the tiki bar, breaking eggs, mixing pancake batter, firing up the grill to get breakfast started for everybody.

Over the years there were tragedies.  Louie’s younger brother, Frankie (they were two of four brothers), another beloved guy, a former NYC detective, had a terrible string of them a few years ago.   Frankie’s playful wife was diagnosed, too late, with the cancer that killed her a very short time later, right before the picnic one year. A few months later Louie came down with a sore throat he couldn’t shake.  The sore throat turned out to be esophageal cancer.   Louie’s funeral was on a brutally frigid day a month or two later.   Frankie underwent a heart procedure that had a very remote, less than one percent, chance of paralysis.   Frankie hit that jackpot too. Somehow, his faith sustains him.  He seems in most ways to be pretty close to how he always was, except that he’s in a wheelchair and attended by two caretakers at all times.

I’m thinking about this family today because we came back from that third weekend in August picnic last night.   When Uncle Tony’s widow died about fifteen years ago the picnic was in jeopardy.   It was unclear, as Sekhnet edited her beautiful movie chronicling the history of the picnic, if there’d be another one.  That was a big motivation to make the documentary, to capture this unique tradition.  In the end the property was purchased by a grand-nephew who rebuilt the place into a modern family compound.  

I first saw this guy as a young man in Sekhnet’s masterpiece. The young Anthony looks into her camera and says “it was just a weekend but it seemed to us like the whole summer, we couldn’t wait to go and we used to cry when we had to leave.”  In the end he and his wife bought the place and they continue to host the family tradition the third weekend every August.

Anthony runs the picnic much the way Uncle Tony used to do it when Anthony was a kid.  No elaborate planning of the menu is done, people bring whatever they bring, and it is always plenty, and delicious.  Lunch is at one, laid out on long tables.  People take a walk down to the nearby beach.    The traditional games are played as the assembled adults cheer and heckle: a line of kids trying to whistle with a mouth full of crackers, blow the largest bubble gum bubble, eat a round slice of watermelon by thrusting the face into the middle of it, three-legged sack races, tug of war with a gigantic rope.  Prizes go to everybody after each game.  

Gone is the candy tree of Sekhnet’s youth, a tree with candy on every branch where the kids found their prizes under the leaves and picked them right off the tree. Gone are the buzz cuts for the boys that Uncle Tony used to administer, but the traditions of the picnic are clearly prized and ongoing, as is the love and closeness of everyone there.   The children of Uncle Tony’s grandnieces and grandnephews are now becoming teenagers, young adults.    I knew all these kids as babies, then as toddlers.  If we live long enough, we’ll see their babies and toddlers, hard as that is to believe.  Sekhnet and I are among the older generation now.

Somebody took out a packet of photos yesterday after dinner.   They were passed around and cackled over.  Here is so and so (sitting across from me) at thirteen, forty years ago.  “Oh, my God, look at… is that so and so?!!”  Amid much hooting Sekhnet was examining a photo with a human shaped cut-out in the middle.  “I like the invisible man,” I said, pointing to the blue table cloth showing through the open space the shape of a person literally cut out of the picture.   The cut out person was not identified or commented on and I didn’t follow up.    

Over the years a few people have disappeared from the gatherings.  Not only because of death, but other things too.  This happens in families.   We don’t talk about that, beyond a mention and a shrug, sometimes a short summary of the sad tale.   Why talk about it?   Family, and being with those you love, is the most important thing.  Am I wrong?


[1]  Although familicides are relatively rare, they are the most common form of mass killing.    source    


Don’t Worry About a Thing, he’s got the whole world in his hands

Our nation is in the hands of a world class financial genius.   He knows just how close to the brink to go before snatching victory from his adversary’s hand.   He’s crazy as a fox — and he’s never failed, never.   He was also the hero of one of America’s most popular and longest running reality TV shows ever.  He is a tremendous hero to some 60,000,000 or so great Americans.   

Pay no attentions to naysayers who try to frighten you about his supposed “impulsiveness” or “recklessness”.  His enemies will keep pointing to his several business bankruptcies, BUSINESS bankruptcies, not one of them a personal bankruptcy — personally he’s filthy rich.  Winners always play with house money.  Don’t forget this guy used to run some very successful casinos.

Still, there are those who won’t be happy until they see him fail, see America fail.  They write crazy, critical things, like this John Cassidy fellow in the New Yorker typed out in May of 2019:

The financial reprieve that Trump’s businesses received turned out to be temporary.  In 1991, his Taj Mahal casino, in Atlantic City, filed for bankruptcy protection, and, not very long after, so did his other two casinos—the Trump Plaza and the Trump Castle. In 1992, the Plaza Hotel filed for bankruptcy, and Trump agreed to turn over many of his remaining assets, including Trump Shuttle, to his creditors. With the help of the banks and his father, who repeatedly gave him money, Trump managed to escape the humiliation of personal bankruptcy, but his days as a swashbuckling entrepreneur were done. For a decade, or more, he largely confined himself to licensing deals, entertainment ventures, and minority investments that cashed in on his personal brand, which somehow survived his dramatic fall.

In May, 2019, this is all distant history, of course. But don’t let anyone tell you—not Trump, nor Newt Gingrich, nor any of the President’s other apologists—that the businesses Trump operated were successful, or that the huge losses they sustained were simply tax dodges. They weren’t.    


The lying mass media will show misleading graphics like this one, purposefully designed to make him look bad:

Screen shot 2019-08-16 at 3.56.29 AM.png

Real Americans LOVE this guy, and the way he’s making America great again, so do the rest of us a big fat favor, MSNBC and the failing so-called New Yorker (whatever that is) and just shut the hell up, OK?

Imbecile-in-chief intent on laughing last

Of all the damage this destructive narcissist has done so far, the thing that probably irks me the most (from a competitive list) is his despicable championing of a down-the-line partisan hack with multiple skeletons in his closet for a lifetime position on the Supreme Court [1].   The Federalist Society poster boy (a life member who was in its inaugural class at Yale Law School in the 1980s) will rule on important legal issues, unappealably, for possibly decades.  Every one of his votes can be predicted based on the issues involved, the position radical, corporatist conservatives favor, and his thoroughly consistent past rulings.   There were twenty-four other names on the list the Federalist Society gave Trump, yet the president chose to force the most despicable controversial and openly divisive of them on America.   For a generation.

Looking at choir boy Kavanaugh’s perpetually smiling face, looming out of his black judicial robes, makes me sick.   It’s tempting to use words like “scumbag” and “piece of shit”, but you get the point.   If an ugly, syphlitic penis had a face, it would be that self-satisfied, smirking mug.

I just read an excellent article by a writer named Megan Garber about the power of uproarious mockery and how Trump used it against Christine Blasey Ford, whose testimony was so vulnerably candid and powerful that even FOX news was in despair, during the break in the hearings, wringing its collective hands that Kavanaugh’s chance for appointment to the Supreme Court was over.  That was before Kavanaugh “manned up” in the afternoon session to forcefully strike back against his vicious enemies, crying, snorting and accusing, aided by a shrill, indignant Lindsay Graham and an insurmountable one vote Republican party-line majority in the Judiciary Committee.

A few days later, while the FBI was doing a very limited, five day complete investigation into Blasey Ford’s accusations, Trump, in Mississippi, had a rally of supporters cracking up at her expense.    From Megan Garber’s account:

I had one beer,” the president, imitating Ford, said, thrusting his index finger upward to emphasize the number. He kept the digit upraised. “I had one beer!

The president then added another character to his routine: an anonymous interrogator of Ford. “Well, do you think it was—” he began to ask.

Nope!” he said, gleefully interrupting himself and his fictional questioner. “It was one beer.” The joke built speed. “How did you get home? I don’t remember.How did you get there? I don’t remember. Where is the place? I don’t remember.How many years ago was it? I don’t know. I don’t know. I don’t know.

At this, the crowd at the rally guffawed. They cheered. They broke out into applause. The president, thus galvanized, thus supported, thus loved, continued his one-man interrogation: “What neighborhood was it in? I don’t know. Where’s the house? I don’t know. Upstairs, downstairs, where was it? I don’t know. But I had one beer. That’s the only thing I remember.

Of course, she remembered an awful lot of specifics, including, vividly, Kavanaugh’s drunken, dickish face looming over her as he held her down and groped her and his drunk friend Mark Judge nearby.  She remembered enough for the FBI to have easily found the exact home in which the attack took place that summer afternoon in 1982 — within a walk of the Country Club where she swam–  in  a locked room on the second floor, across from the bathroom at the top of the stairs.   Had the FBI been permitted to fully investigate, or even interview more than a small, select handful of “witnesses”, let alone talk to Kavanaugh or Blasey Ford, the specifics could easily have been confirmed.   Instead “Boof” Kavanaugh was.

Megan Garber includes this from what should have been Blasey Ford’s “end of story” testimony: 

“What is the strongest memory you have, the strongest memory of the incident, something you cannot forget?” Patrick Leahy, the Democratic senator from Vermont, asked Ford last Thursday, during her testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee. The professor of psychology, serving as her own expert witness in the attack that she alleged Kavanaugh and his friend Mark Judge perpetrated, replied: “Indelible in the hippocampus is the laughter. The uproarious laughter between the two, and their having fun at my expense.”

“You’ve never forgotten them laughing at you,” Leahy said.

“They were laughing with each other,” Ford replied.

“And you were the object of the laughter?”

“I was underneath one of them, while the two laughed.”

“Indelible in the hippocampus is the laughter. The uproarious laughter between the two, and their having fun at my expense.”

Contrast this level of certainty and detail to what was contained in the written answers Trump gave to the Special Counsel during the investigation of his possible criminal conspiracy with Russia during his historic 2016 presidential campaign and his ongoing (and continuing) pattern of obstruction of justice, a pattern that escalated dramatically and immediately once the Special Counsel was appointed. 

Remember that these written answers were submitted because the president’s lawyers had ruled out an interview with Mueller, a guaranteed “perjury trap”  since the president has proved himself, over and over, to be simply incapable of not lying.    Trump’s lawyers’ written answers claimed he had no memory of anything, no detail too large or too small for him to have no recollection of.   

Mueller called these answers “inadequate, incomplete, imprecise and insufficient”.  A good description, certainly of the stand-up guy president’s final answer, to a detailed question about the soon to be sentenced former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.


[no answer provided] 

Why this has hilarious FUCK YOU not been more widely publicized, I have no idea.   

The evasive and “inadequate” written answers and Mueller’s detailed queries have been on-line for a while.  You can read them here.  Scroll down to the last one for the punchline, or just check out the question and its “insufficient” answer below.  [2]   

Hilarious, no?


[1]  multiple accounts of years of his black out “beer” drinking, two independent, credible and detailed accounts of gross sexual impropriety (the one at Yale never investigated at all, in spite of numerous witnesses to it coming forward during the confirmation hearings), his denial of details of his close association with his disgraced former mentor Alex Kozinsky (and Kozinsky’s sexually explicit listserve), a long pattern of extreme partisanship including aggressive prosecution of then president Bill Clinton and undisclosed, classified services rendered to Dubya Bush, including during the controversial Florida recount episode.   

There was enough controversy that the voice of American Jesuits said Kavanaugh must withdraw his name from consideration.  Instead the blameless jurist made a tearful, snorting partisan speech accusing the Clintons of launching a well-funded dark money campaign of revenge against him — an unhinged speech that should have disqualified him.   To wit:

A calculated and orchestrated political hit, fueled with apparent pent-up anger about President Trump and the 2016 election, fear that has been unfairly stoked about my judicial record, revenge on behalf of the Clintons and millions of dollars in money from outside left-wing opposition groups. 



b. Following the Obama Administration’s imposition of sanctions on Russia in December 2016 (“Russia sanctions”), did you discuss with Lieutenant General (LTG) Michael Flynn, K.T. McFarland, Steve Bannon, Reince Priebus, Jared Kushner, Erik Prince, or anyone else associated with the transition what should be communicated to the Russian government regarding the sanctions? If yes, describe who you spoke with about this issue, when, and the substance of the discussion(s).

c. On December 29 and December 31, 2016, LTG Flynn had conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak about the Russia sanctions and Russia’s response to the Russia sanctions.

i. Did you direct or suggest that LTG Flynn have discussions with anyone from the Russian government about the Russia sanctions?

ii. Were you told in advance of LTG Flynn’s December 29, 2016 conversation that he was going to be speaking with Ambassador Kislyak? If yes, describe who told you this information, when, and what you were told. If no, when and from whom did you learn of LTG Flynn’s December 29, 2016 conversation with Ambassador Kislyak?

iii. When did you learn of LTG Flynn and Ambassador Kislyak’s call on December 31, 2016? Who told you and what were you told?

iv. When did you learn that sanctions were discussed in the December 29 and December 31, 2016 calls between LTG Flynn and Ambassador Kislyak? Who told you and what were you told?

d. At any time between December 31, 2016, and January 20, 2017, did anyone tell you or suggest to you that Russia’s decision not to impose reciprocal sanctions was attributable in any way to LTG Flynn’s communications with Ambassador Kislyak? If yes, identify who provided you with this information, when, and the substance of what you were told.

e. On January 12, 2017, the Washington Post published a column that stated that LTG Flynn phoned Ambassador Kislyak several times on December 29, 2016. After learning of the column, did you direct or suggest to anyone that LTG Flynn should deny that he discussed sanctions with Ambassador Kislyak? If yes, who did you make this suggestion or direction to, when, what did you say, and why did you take this step?

i. After learning of the column, did you have any conversations with LTG Flynn about his conversations with Ambassador Kislyak in December 2016? If yes, describe when those discussions occurred and the content of the discussions.

f. Were you told about a meeting between Jared Kushner and Sergei Gorkov that took place in December 2016?

i. If yes, describe who you spoke with, when, the substance of the discussion(s), and what you understood was the purpose of the meeting.

g. Were you told about a meeting or meetings between Erik Prince and Kirill Dmitriev or any other representative from the Russian government that took place in January 2017?

i. If yes, describe who you spoke with, when, the substance of the discussion(s), and what you understood was the purpose of the meeting(s).

h. Prior to January 20, 2017, did you talk to Steve Bannon, Jared Kushner, or any other individual associated with the transition regarding establishing an unofficial line of communication with Russia? If yes, describe who you spoke with, when, the substance of the discussion(s), and what you understood was the purpose of such an unofficial line of communication.


(No answer provided.)