October 11, 2017

Posted by orrinj at 6:56 PM

ODD MAN, OUT:

FCC Chair Preemptively Rubbishes Trump's Dumb Tweet About Challenging Media Licenses (Matt Welch, Oct. 11, 2017, Reason)

The president is correct, if unintentionally so, that challenging a media company's license out of frustration over its allegedly inaccurate coverage is "Bad for country!" As he would know well, if he paid attention to his own Federal Communications Commission Chair, Ajit Pai, who in a speech last month (as covered by Variety) sounded the warning that "free speech in practice seems to be under siege in this country":

Pai added that the "common thread is the belief, shared by too many, that those with views perceived as unpopular or offensive should be silenced. One has to wonder whether those who will one day carry the torch will be dedicated to open debate or will instead seek to marginalize viewpoints they don't like."

Pai said that he also sees "worrying signs" at the FCC, pointing to Twitter messages in which "people regularly demand that the FCC yank licenses from cable news channels like Fox News, MSNBC, or CNN because they disagree with the opinions expressed on those networks."

"Setting aside the fact that the FCC doesn't license cable channels, these demands are fundamentally at odds with our legal and cultural traditions," Pai said.

Posted by orrinj at 6:49 PM


Posted by orrinj at 6:05 PM

ANYONE SEEN LOUIS ZAMPERINI?:

Russia protests to U.S. over 'shameful' theft of consulate flags (Reuters, 10/11/17) 

Russia protested to the United States on Wednesday after it said Russian flags were stolen from its consulate in San Francisco.

Posted by orrinj at 5:19 PM

YOU KNOW IT'S FAKE NEWS BECAUSE THEY PRETEND IT WAS EVER RAVELED:

"I HATE EVERYONE IN THE WHITE HOUSE!": TRUMP SEETHES AS ADVISERS FEAR THE PRESIDENT IS "UNRAVELING" (GABRIEL SHERMAN, OCTOBER 11, 2017, Vanity Fair)

At first it sounded like hyperbole, the escalation of a Twitter war. But now it's clear that Bob Corker's remarkable New York Times interview--in which the Republican senator described the White House as "adult day care" and warned Trump could start World War III--was an inflection point in the Trump presidency. It brought into the open what several people close to the president have recently told me in private: that Trump is "unstable," "losing a step," and "unraveling."

The conversation among some of the president's longtime confidantes, along with the character of some of the leaks emerging from the White House has shifted. There's a new level of concern. NBC News published a report that Trump shocked his national security team when he called for a nearly tenfold increase in the country's nuclear arsenal during a briefing this summer. One Trump adviser confirmed to me it was after this meeting disbanded that Secretary of State Rex Tillerson called Trump a "moron."

In recent days, I spoke with a half dozen prominent Republicans and Trump advisers, and they all describe a White House in crisis as advisers struggle to contain a president who seems to be increasingly unfocused and consumed by dark moods. Trump's ire is being fueled by his stalled legislative agenda and, to a surprising degree, by his decision last month to back the losing candidate Luther Strange in the Alabama Republican primary. "Alabama was a huge blow to his psyche," a person close to Trump said. "He saw the cult of personality was broken."

According to two sources familiar with the conversation, Trump vented to his longtime security chief, Keith Schiller, "I hate everyone in the White House!"


In fairness, everyone hates everyone in his White House.




Posted by orrinj at 3:25 PM

THE GIRLS DON'T SEEM TO CARE TONIGHT:

Trump Wanted Tenfold Increase in Nuclear Arsenal, Surprising Military (COURTNEY KUBE, KRISTEN WELKER, CAROL E. LEE and SAVANNAH GUTHRIE, 10/11/17, NBC)

According to the officials present, Trump's advisers, among them the Joint Chiefs of Staff and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, were surprised. Officials briefly explained the legal and practical impediments to a nuclear buildup and how the current military posture is stronger than it was at the height of the buildup. In interviews, they told NBC News that no such expansion is planned.

Of course, if he'd just use the ones we have there'd be no need for any more. Proliferation is a function of not using them.

Posted by orrinj at 3:16 PM

WHAT PART OF TECHNOLOGY, GLOBALIZATION AND INVESTMENT MYSTIFIES THEM?:

Federal Reserve grapples with mystery of persistently low inflation (Associated Press, 10/11/17)


Posted by orrinj at 3:14 PM

GREATEST WAR EVER:

Islamic State claims triple suicide bombing on Damascus police HQ (AFP, October 11, 2017)

The Islamic State terror group claimed responsibility on Wednesday for a triple suicide attack on the main police headquarters in Syria's capital Damascus that killed at least two people. [...]

The attack was the second time in a month that suicide attackers have targeted the capital, which has often been insulated from the worst of the violence in the war-torn country.