Paul Krugman: Things Can Only Get Worse (NY Times Column)
What comes after "American carnage"?
NICHOLAS FANDOS: White House Pushes 'Alternative Facts.' Here Are the Real Ones. (NY Times)
In leveling this attack, the president and Mr. Spicer made a series of false statements.
'Alternative facts' - the greatest, strongest facts that ever existed (The Guardian)
In today's pass notes: Kellyanne Conway reckons that lies from the Trump White House are merely 'alternative facts'. Now look at this picture of a spaceship.
Oliver Wainwright: A dating app says I'm London's hottest single man. I think the cat's to blame (The Guardian)
When the Happn app announced that my dating profile was a hit, I thought it was a phishing scam. Then my phone lit up with friends laughing at me.
Deconstructed Nutella: nuts, cocoa - and 58% sugar (The Guardian)
A photograph of its raw ingredients has shocked fans of the spread. But is it really any worse than jam or marmalade?
Alan Yuhas: White House refusal to release Trump tax returns alienates WikiLeaks (The Guardian)
WikiLeaks calls for someone to leak documents so they can be published.
Michelle Goodman: I was a self-help guru. Here's why you shouldn't listen to people like me. (Vox)
I learned the hard way that the people trying to solve your problems often need help the most.
Garrison Keillor: Hanging out down South (Washington Post)
I've been down in South Carolina and Georgia, an old Northern liberal in red states, enjoying a climate like April in January and the hospitality of gracious, soft-spoken people, many of whom voted for He Who Does Not Need Intelligence, but they didn't bring it up, so neither did I.
Garrison Keillor: Trump has me searching for a new religion (Washington Post)
So I've been shopping around for a new religion to see me through the next four years. Too many of my fellow Christians voted for selfishness and for degradation of the beautiful world God created. I guess they figured that by the time the planet was a smoky wasteland, they'd be nice and comfy in heaven, so wotthehell. Anyhow, I'm looking around for other options.
David Bruce's Amazon Author Page
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David Bruce has over 80 Kindle books on Amazon.com.
"Doug's Most Shared Facebook Post" Today
Michelle in AZ
David E Suggests
Jeannie the Teed-Off Temp
Spicer is almost as petulant a toddler as the Orange Stain. He whines about how things that are reported are negative--he can't do that (because it's unconstitutional! or because it's not something the president is allowed by law to do!) or the figures aren't true (well, duh! You lied!).
What an f-ing SHAME, Spicer, but when you lie and when you spin, the ACTUAL TRUTH--not that alternative crap--IS negative. Try telling a truth and see what happens.
Cynthia found these two. Surreal is still the best word to describe The Orange Stain and his effect on everything and everyone.
We are all only temporarily able bodied.
Thanks. Linda (& Janet)!
from Marc Perkel
from that Mad Cat, JD
AMERICAS MOST DANGEROUS SECRETARY OF STATE!
DONALD TRUMPS INTELLIGENCE.
THIS IS HOW DEMOCRACY DIES!
FASCISM COMES TO AMERICA!
Visit JD's site - Kitty Litter Music
In The Chaos Household
Rain stopped by the time the sun came up. Whew.
Late night talk show host Stephen Colbert will host the 69th Primetime Emmy Awards in September, organizers announced on Monday.
"Stephen is the ultimate master of ceremonies with award-winning creative talents," Jack Sussman -- a top executive at CBS television, whch also is home to Colbert's "Late Show" -- said in a statement.
The comedian, who for years has kept America laughing with his biting humor, wasted no time in setting the tone for the September 17 awards.
"This will be the largest audience to witness an Emmys, period. Both in person and around the globe," he said in the same statement -- a swipe at comments made by White House press secretary Sean Spicer about attendance at the inauguration of P-resident Donald Trump (R-Grifter).
The Emmy Awards will take place at the Microsoft Theatre in Los Angeles on September 17. Nominations will be announced on July 13.
Razzie Awards 2017
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is among the top nominees for the 37th annual Golden Raspberry Awards, aka the Razzies, which spotlight the worst in film every year.
Calling the movie a "WTF comic-book battle royale," Razzie organizers said the Ben Affleck film landed a total of eight nominations, including worst picture of 2016, where it will vie with Dirty Grandpa, Gods of Egypt, Hillary's America: The Secret History of the Democratic Party, Independence Day: Resurgence, and Zoolander No. 2 for the honor.
Overall, Zoolander No. 2 (a "15-years-too-late sequel") led the pack of nominees with a total of nine mentions, while other multiple nominees were Dirty Grandpa (six); Gods of Egypt, Hillary's America, and Independence Day: Resurgence (five apiece); and Alice Through the Looking Glass (three).
Both Batman v Superman and Zoolander No. 2 also are nominated for worst remake, ripoff, or sequel. In addition, Affleck - who in 2015 won the "Razzie Redeemer" prize for making the transition from the critically drubbed Gigli to Oscar winner Argo and acclaimed Gone Girl - and Cavill are both up for worst actor and worst screen combo. The film also is nominated for worst screenplay and worst director for Zack Snyder.
Zoolander No. 2's nominations include a worst actor mention for Ben Stiller, worst supporting actress for Kristen Wiig, worst supporting actor for Will Ferrell and Owen Wilson, and worst screen combo for Stiller and Wilson.
Other nominees include Dinesh D'Souza (as himself) for worst actor for the documentary Hillary's America: The Secret History of the Democratic Party and Tyler Perry for worst actress (a category he won in 2014) for BOO! A Medea Halloween.
Complete list - Razzie Awards 2017
Out of all the many hundreds of thousands of people who attended the Women's March in Washington D.C. this weekend, the odds of meeting Steve Buscemi in the crowd must have been pretty low.
What makes the photo even more incredible, though, is that the guys who bumped into Buscemi were wielding a sign directly referencing one of his characters.
On Sunday, two friends shared photos from the March on Reddit, where they quickly went viral.
Yep, that's the classic line from The Big Lebowski delivered repeatedly by John Goodman's character throughout the film. And that's none other than Donny himself.
"Steve showed up out of nowhere," commented Reddit user Squalor-. "It was crazy. Were were walking in the March, and he just floated in from out of nowhere.
Out At Rupert News
Stacey Dash's sporadic career as a Fox News pundit is over, after the network declined to renew her contract.
The sometime-actress and author, an early and vocal Trump supporter, made her Fox News debut in 2014, but hasn't been seen on air since last September. A representative told The Hollywood Reporter that the decision not to renew was taken last fall.
Dash is best known for her role in the 1995 film Clueless, but in recent years has become better known for her politics. Since her high-profile decision to vote for the Romney-Ryan ticket instead of Obama-Biden in 2012, Dash, 50, has staked out increasingly conservative positions, reveling in the notoriety on Twitter, as well as on Fox News. In 2015, she was suspended temporarily from the network for swearing on-air in a rant about President Barack Obama. Last year, she created more controversy over her strident views on transgender issues, as well as Middle Eastern immigration into the U.S. following the Orlando, Fla., nightclub shooting.
Given Dash's abrasive persona on social media, some Twitter users, unsurprisingly, took great delight at the news of her exit from Fox News.
White House press secretary Sean Spicer on Monday rejected reports that President Trump's visit to CIA headquarters during the weekend hurt his already troubled relationship with the U.S. intelligence community.
On Saturday, Trump gave a freewheeling speech at the CIA while standing before a wall memorializing fallen officers. Among other comments, he ripped the media for downplaying the size of the crowd at his inauguration and boasted that most of the people in the room had voted for him. Former CIA Director John Brennan called the appearance shameful, and CBS reported that the visit was "uncomfortable" and not welcomed enthusiastically by CIA officials there.
Government sources told the outlet that Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and Rep. Mike Pompeo, R-Kan. (the president's nominee for CIA director), brought about 40 Trump supporters to sit in the first three rows and cheer on the president. But rather than showing excitement, the sources said, many of the CIA employees were shocked and offended that his speech meandered into campaign rhetoric, as the agency considers itself above partisan politics.
At a press conference Monday afternoon, Spicer dismissed the report as not "accurate at all" and compelled people to listen to audio from Trump's visit to hear the "excitement that exists there." He was pressed as to whether the people seated in the front rows were CIA employees.
CNN's Jim Acosta said no one who was there agreed with Spicer's version of the event.
Judge Blocks Acquisition
A US federal judge on Monday blocked Aetna's proposed $37 billion acquisition of rival health insurer Humana, ruling the combination would stifle competition in the health sector.
US District Judge John Bates upheld the essential arguments of antitrust regulators who sued to block the deal, saying that combining two of the big five American health insurers would harm consumers.
He highlighted consumers in the "Medicare Advantage" program for seniors, an alternative to the federal health-care program, and the three health exchanges in Florida set up under the Affordable Care Act.
"The Court concludes that the proposed merger is likely to substantially lessen competition," Bates said in a 158-page decision. "The proposed merger of Aetna and Humana will be enjoined."
Henry Ford Museum
The Henry Ford Museum in suburban Detroit has changed its name to better convey the museum's collection and its core focus on innovation, officials announced Monday.
The museum now will be known as the Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation. The museum was founded by auto pioneer Henry Ford and is part of The Henry Ford, a popular tourist destination in Dearborn, Michigan.
"Henry Ford Museum has always been about ideas and innovations that changed the world," Patricia Mooradian, president of The Henry Ford, said in a statement. "We believe adding the word innovation to the museum's name better serves our visitors as it clearly defines the museum's focus."
The museum's collection includes artifacts and exhibits that showcase American history, ideas and innovations, including the railroad, auto, aviation and agriculture industries. Other well-known artifacts include the limousine in which President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in 1963 and President George Washington's camping supplies.
Henry Ford Museum
New Barberini Museum
The German city of Potsdam has a new private art museum, the Barberini, founded and funded by the German business mogul Hasso Plattner, number #113 on Forbes' Billionaire list.
On January 20, 2017, Germany celebrated the inauguration of its new art museum the Barberini, located in a former Baroque palace built in 1771 by Frederick the Great. The museum's founder, Hasso Plattner, invested an estimated 60 million euros into the renovation of the palace, which was destroyed during a bombing raid in the Second World War. As well as its inaugural show, the museum also has a small exhibition "Barberini Palace: Stories of a Building" which narrates the building's history.
The museum's inaugural exhibition "The Art of Landscape and Modern Art Classics" features pieces from Plattner's own private collection, as well as other pieces on loan. Anticipated works include Edvard Munch's "Girls on a Bridge" as well as work by Claude Monet, Auguste Renoir and Wassily Kandinsky.
From the very start, Plattner's Barberini project has been fraught with difficulties and obstacles: from where the museum should be located, right up to the artwork in its debut show. In an interview with The Guardian, Plattner defended his project and emphasized the benefits it would bring to Potsdam, a city on the border of Berlin, about 30 km from the German capital: "I hope the doubters will soon see what it gives to the city by bringing art lovers here in their droves as well as putting the finishing touches to recreating the historic center of Potsdam."
Bogus Bongs Or Bogus Lawsuits?
Roor Glass Water Pipes
In the rarefied world of high-end bong makers, Roor glass water pipes have long been smoked to impress. The status symbols are so sought after that some models command prices of $1,000. There's even a diamond-studded, gold-gilded Roor that goes for nearly $4,000.
Both marijuana and the tools used to smoke it remain illegal under federal law, but that hasn't stopped Roor and its American licensee from using the federal courts to protect the brand and its sales.
In Florida, California and New York, lawyers are accusing smoke shops and mom-and-pop convenience stores of selling counterfeit Roor bongs in violation of U.S. Trademark No. 3675839, protecting "SMOKER'S ARTICLES, NAMELY, GLASS PIPES, BONGS, WATER PIPES, (and) WATER PIPES OF GLASS" sold under the Roor mark, which has "a stylized font with the last "R'' facing backwards."
Almost 200 such lawsuits have been filed since 2013, most of them in the last year.
"Counterfeiting is a huge problem for us," said Jay Farraj, the owner of Sream Inc., Roor's U.S. partner. He said the Corona, California, company's losses have been in the "millions."
Roor Glass Water Pipes
Charlie Liteky, an Army chaplain in Vietnam who was awarded the Medal of Honor for rescuing more than 20 wounded men but later gave it back in protest and became a peace activist, has died.
Longtime friend Richard Olive said Liteky died Friday night at the Veterans Administration Hospital in San Francisco. He was 85.
The Army awarded Liteky the highest military decoration for his actions on Dec. 6, 1967, when his company came under intense fire from an enemy battalion in Bien Hoa province. Despite painful wounds in the neck and foot, Liteky carried more than 20 men to the landing zone to be evacuated during the fierce firefight.
"Noticing another trapped and seriously wounded man, Chaplain Liteky crawled to his aid," the Army's official citation reads. "Realizing that the wounded man was too heavy to carry, he rolled on his back, placed the man on his chest and through sheer determination and fortitude crawled back to the landing zone using his elbows and heels to push himself along."
He left the priesthood and in 1983, married former Catholic nun and peace activist Judy Balch in San Francisco. His wife introduced him to refugees from El Salvador, "teenagers, whose fathers had been killed and tortured. I didn't believe it, but I kept going to more and more of these meetings and it became clear these people weren't blowing in the wind," Liteky told the San Francisco Chronicle in a March, 2000 interview.
Twenty years after his heroic actions in Vietnam, Liteky left the Medal of Honor - awarded under the name of Angelo J. Liteky - and a letter to President Ronald Reagan at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington in protest of the country's foreign policy in Central America, where U.S.-backed dictators were fighting bloody wars against left-leaning rebels.
After that, Liteky spent years protesting against the U.S. Army School of the Americas, an academy at Fort Benning, Georgia, where the U.S. Army trained soldiers from Central and South America and the Caribbean. He was sentenced to one year in federal prison in 2000 for entering the school without permission and splashing its rotunda with their own blood.
In 2003, he traveled to Baghdad with other peace protesters to bear witness to the war and work with children in an orphanage and at hospitals.
Olive said Saturday he remembers Liteky for his humility. "It was three years after I met Charlie and bonded a fast friendship that I learned he was a Medal of Honor recipient" when Liteky told him about his plans to renounce the medal, Olive said.
There are no plans for a funeral, Olive said.