Thursday Open Thread

“Chaos in the midst of chaos isn’t funny, but chaos in the midst of order is.”

–Steve Martin

27 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. DavieDavie says:

    I hope Trump at least got a reach-around from Kim during their 45 minute "one-on-one".  From the Denver Post:

    Dubbing it the start of a new relationship between their countries, which are still technically at war, Pyongyang’s first reports Wednesday stressed to the North Korean people that Trump agreed, at Kim’s demand, to halt joint military exercises with South Korea as long as talks toward easing tensions continue.

    The media message to the masses was clear: This is a big success for Kim…

  2. PseudonymousPseudonymous says:

    A judge has struck down Colorado's citizen-enforcement of campaign finance violations. He found the method to be unconstitutional, in no small part, apparently, due to the fact that Wayne Williams' office is shit.

    A federal judge just knocked down major parts of Colorado’s privatized system of enforcing money-in-politics laws

    This week, Judge Moore agreed. But he also took to task attorneys who represent the Secretary of State.

    “At no point does defendant even attempt to explain how the enforcement provisions may satisfy any actual test for determining their constitutionality,” Moore wrote, adding the Secretary of State’s office “has made no attempt to explain what state interest, compelling or otherwise, is advanced by the enforcement provisions.

    “As a result, ultimately, because defendant has failed to explain or provide evidence of how the enforcement provisions satisfy strict scrutiny, plaintiff is entitled to summary judgment,” Moore concluded.

    Now, Griswold fans, this is the kind of stuff you attack him on.

  3. PseudonymousPseudonymous says:

    New York files suit against President Trump, alleging his charity engaged in ‘illegal conduct’

    The New York attorney general on Thursday filed suit against President Trump and his three eldest children alleging “persistently illegal conduct” at the president’s personal charity, saying Trump repeatedly misused the nonprofit — to pay off his businesses’ creditors, to decorate one of his golf clubs and to stage a multimillion dollar giveaway at his 2016 campaign events.

    In the suit, filed Thursday morning, attorney general Barbara Underwood asked a state judge to dissolve the Donald J. Trump Foundation. She asked that its remaining $1 million in assets be distributed to other charities and that Trump be forced to pay at least $2.8 million in restitution and penalties.

    • PseudonymousPseudonymous says:

      Oh, that's worse…

    • mamajama55mamajama55 says:

      It's interesting that the NY AG's office appears to have slow-walked this lawsuit for two years while Schneiderman (who had to resign in disgrace following domestic abuse allegations) was in office, and that it is only now going forward now that there is a new head for the agency.

      Almost makes one wonder if Schneiderman was feeling "pressure" from Trump world to slow down the investigation of his corrupt foundation.

      I remember the Washington Post exposing this in 2016.

      Then there was the matter of Trump first encouraging, then firing Preet Bharara, prosecutor for the southern district of New York. That was weird, too. Bharara says he still doesn’t know why he was fired.

      Thanks #metoo movement for clearing the way.

      • JohnInDenver says:

        I think this may be a first — mamajama55 and the Trump Organization sharing a claim.  Mamajama55 asserts the investigation was "slow-walked," the Trump Organization and the twitter-in-chief says it "lingered in their office for nearly 2 years."

        Curiously, the same results are alleged to come from completely different motives:  mj's "pressure from Trump world to slow down the investigation" versus Trump's " “Schneiderman, who ran the Clinton campaign in New York, never had the guts to bring this ridiculous case… [but] his disciples brought it when we would not settle."

        Being interested in the Trump phenomenon and Foundation governance, I followed this story fairly carefully. After the Washington Post articles exposing the Foundation broke, the NY AG office began its investigation. It then suspended the Foundation's activities and prohibited its dissolution until a full accounting of its records could be compiled. 20 months of investigation resulted in a broad spectrum of charges and referrals — some obvious (self-dealing) and others requiring more digging, interviews, and careful legal reasoning (campaign-related disbursements).

        I had first hand experience with a MUCH smaller organization with much more evident and direct charges to be made that took ten months to get to a public announcement. Double the time for a case with millions at stake and a high-visibility cast of characters doesn't seem unreasonable to me.

        • DavieDavie says:

          Once Trump is out of office, no doubt Mueller's (and New York, possibly other State AGs') corruption investigations will follow for many years…

        • mamajama55mamajama55 says:

          J i D, You may be right, that the 2 year delay is completely normal for a big investigation. But you have to admit that the timing is interesting. If you were following it, why wasn't Schneiderman proclaiming that this big case with the Trump Foundation was winding up? Why are we only getting that after he was forced to resign?

          To me, it looks like the media (Forbes and Washington Post) were the ones pushing resolution – not the AG's office, at least not until Schneiderman resigned and Underwood took over.  And certainly Trump had used his favorite forum, Twitter, to hint that he had compromising information about Schneiderman. 

          FYI,  John, "wondering" and finding something to be "interesting" and saying that the investigation "appeared to be slow-walked" are not the same thing as "alleging" or "asserting" that dragging the Foundation investigation out because of possible blackmail from Trump operatives happened. 

          I maintain my right to wonder, to find things to be interesting, especially timing, and to speculate about them without necessarily cuing the usual suspects to pounce and trash my credibility.




          • JohnInDenver says:

            mamajama55 … says "why wasn't Schneiderman proclaiming that this big case with the Trump Foundation was winding up?"

            My speculation is, like MOST prosecutors, Schneiderman and  Underwood don't announce on-going investigations or their time tables. Prosecutors announce actions. Until they are certain actions are being taken, they do not want to encourage speculation, alert alleged perpetrators, or bias prospective judges or members of the jury.

            That reticence (preserved by policy and in some cases, laws) is one reason why any number of prosecutors and politicians criticized Comey for his July statement and especially for his October surprise.

            p.s. Wonder away, using whatever euphemisms and qualifiers you want along with your basic accusations. I enjoy and often agree with your speculations. However, unless you spend as much time on alternatives as you do on your thesis, I’m likely to respond as if you really meant the claim.

    • JohnInDenver says:

      But … the Clinton Foundation did something, too. Why aren't they going after that foundation?

      At least, that's what I think some will say.

  4. MichaelBowmanMichaelBowman says:

    From the LATimes op-ed section this morning. Have a seat, Nutters, you’re going to get the vapors.

    How a lone Republican changed Trump's position on pot

    Is there a character more derided in modern politics than the anti-Trump Republican?

    Gardner, 43, is a former House GOP “Young Gun” known for being more problem-solver than bomb-thrower. He displayed both talents, however, in managing to convince a law-and-order president who appointed a drug-warrior attorney general to come out in favor of leaving legal marijuana alone.

  5. allyncooper says:

    Trump did say during the campaign that ending marijuana prohibition was a matter for the individual states. At least he appears to be keeping his promise.

    • MichaelBowmanMichaelBowman says:

      Agreed. Which made his choice of Sessions as AG such a conundrum.

      The irony of Sessions last chapter is that being one (if not ‘the’) early Congressional endorsers of Trump has stained his proud Confederate legacy with two things: 1) a Democrat in his old Senate seat, and 2) the prospect of legal (the stuff good people don’t smoke).

      • mamajama55mamajama55 says:

        AG Sessions is like your opponent’s chess piece that you can't remove because it keeps your King (Mueller investigation) from being checkmated. I'm guessing Sessions knows this.


  6. mamajama55mamajama55 says:

    Allies and Immigrants Rally to Keep Families Together

    People across the country are rallying today to protest the Trump policy of separating kids from their families, and jailing them.

    In Aurora, this will be at the ICE detention center at 5:30. I'll be there.

    Start: June 14, 2018 • 5:00 PM

    End: June 14, 2018 • 7:00 PM

    GEO/ICE Detention Facility• 3130 North Oakland Street, Aurora, CO 80010

    Then there is a later event at Montview Prespyterian Church. I've heard both 5 pm and 6:30 pm – the press release says 6:30.  The website and FB post say 5. I tried to clear up confusion, but have not been able to.


    DENVER EVENT: Zero Tolerance for Family Separation March


    Park Hill, June 14th.


    Meet at Southeast Gardens of Montview Presbyterian Church (Outside Together Colorado)


    5:00pm Welcome Song


    5:05 Gather Circle_Name our Brothers and Sisters in Pain (Minute of silence for Claudia Patricia)


    5:15 Prep to March_Set out rules and precautions


    5:20 Set Internal Intention and start marching


    5:40 Arrive at Temple Micah, Araceli greets us with a Song and shares her story- Family Separation in Sanctuary


    5:50 Testimonies-Previously or currently detained brothers and sisters, describing conditions inside


    6:00 Gather Circle_Summon ideas for actions, steps and resolutions, and visit Araceli's booth to support (Earrings and Peoples resolution info, any fliers)


    6:10 Closing Reflection:


    "Tu eres mi otro yo.


    You are my other me.


    Si te hago dano a ti,


    If I do harm to you,


    Me hago dano a mi mismo.


    I do harm to myself.


    Si te amo y respeto,


    If I love and respect you,


    Me amo y respeto yo.


    I love and respect myself.

    Set intention for the walk back – WALKING BACK audio from speaker- The Story of the Samaritan

    There are also events in Boulder and Pueblo today. Check the Families Belong Together website or Facebook page for details.

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