Above the Law's template for reporting on Donald Trump's stupid, doomed legal threats, of which there are so, so many

Donald Trump's legal threats against Fire and Fury publishers Macmillan, USA are merely the latest in the series of absurd, unwinnable, doomed legal threats to emanate from Donald Trump, who is an idiot. Read the rest

Although the upcoming Senate Net Neutrality vote is unlikely to work, it is still an activist triumph with real consequences

After Trump FCC Chairman Ajit Pai killed Net Neutrality -- a deed so indefensible he literally won't defend it -- activists announced their intention to pressure 30 Senators into calling for a vote to overturn it. Read the rest

$300,000,000,000+: 2017's American "natural disaster" bill was by far the highest in history

Until 2017, the biggest bill Americans ever paid for a year's worth of "natural disasters" was $214.8B, back in 2005: in 2017, it was at least $300B, not counting much of the damage to Puerto Rico from Hurricane Maria. Read the rest

Rumour mill says that the Mercers are going to axe Bannon from Breitbart over "Fire and Fury" remarks

In his new book Fire and Fury, Michael Wolff says that one-time White House chief strategist Steve Bannon accused the Trump campaign of "treason", a revelation that sparked a hilarious denunciation by Donald Trump, who claimed that his Chief Strategist didn't know anything about his strategies or his chiefs -- which drew more attention to the book (as did the legal threats the Trump administration fired at the book's publisher, Macmillan), widening the rift between Bannon and Trump. Read the rest

Even though Trump supporters are impervious to fact-checks on most subjects, they still know that the GOP tax plan is a giveaway to the super-rich

Shortly after the election of Donald Trump, Russian exile Masha Gessen's essay Autocracy: Rules for Survival swept the internet, offering both hope and caution for the years to come. Read the rest

Trump's Cabinet of Billionaires operates in unprecedented (and illegal) secrecy

Eight of Trump's 17 cabinet secretaries do not release any information about their travel schedules -- a standard practice under the Obama and GW Bush administrations; 4 others only release incomplete, "sporadic" information; Treasury only started releasing Munichin's schedule in November and six departments illegally withhold details on who their cabinet secretaries meet with (two released some information after being sued). Read the rest

Millions of poor rural voters now hate Trump and millions of rich voters still support him, but the press only profiles poor people who remain Trumpists

Trump won the election by welding together a coalition of racist rich people who wanted tax breaks and racist poor people who'd been living in Fox-induced terror for decades and believed the world was ending and thought that Trump would at least make brown people and liberals as miserable as they were on the way to total collapse. Read the rest

Peter Thiel: the "libertarian" who loves mass government surveillance, monopolies, and censorship

Peter Thiel thinks that it was a mistake to let women vote; that democracy is incompatible with "freedom" (because poor people will tax rich people if they get to elect their own leaders); that the major problem with the mass government surveillance that Edward Snowden revealed was that it was incompetently conducted (which is why he started Palantir, a mass surveillance contractor that sells spying services to authoritarian states); that free markets are inefficient and should be replaced with monopolies; and that marketplace of ideas should be replaced by secretly funded litigation campaigns that eliminate publications that say things you don't like. Read the rest

Utah's paper of record calls for Orrin Hatch to step down: "his utter lack of integrity that rises from his unquenchable thirst for power"

In 2016, the deep-red, Mormon-dominated state of Utah had to choose between voting in favor of a rapist, or in favor of allowing women to control their own fertility, and they chose the rapist. Read the rest

Professional climate denial took hundreds of millions from the CO2 industries, then slipped off their leash

Five years ago, it looked like big oil and big coal were finally acknowledging the reality of climate change, shifting from the early posture of outright denial and the intermediate strategy of sowing confusion, and moving into an endgame of "clean coal" and monopolizing renewables, but the think tanks they had funneled hundreds of millions in dark money to were not having any of it -- and it's they, not the hydrocarbon barons, who've got the ear of the conspiracy-theorist-in-chief, Donald Trump. Read the rest

Zsa Zsa Gabor's husband is pissed that his $50m house was barricaded by a bomb squad, called in to investigate a gift-wrapped box of horseshit that someone sent to Steve Mnuchin

Steve Mnuchin is the gilded age cartoon villain that Trump put in charge of the Treasury where he served as one of the architects of the catastrophic Republican tax plan, so naturally someone sent him a giftwrapped box of horse manure with a tag reading "from the American people." Read the rest

Jeff Sessions encourages courts to continue practice of fining poor people for being too poor to pay their fines

In 2016, the Obama DoJ issued guidance to US courts telling them to cease the practice of levying fines on poor people that exceeded their means to pay, especially fines for failure to pay earlier fines. This week, Trump Attorney General Jeff Sessions reversed that order. Read the rest

Senator Bob Corker owed $120.5M when he was elected; now he's worth $69M

Senator Bob Corker got a rush of progressive love when he dissed Donald Trump in public, then fell from grace when he flipflopped on blocking the tax-bill after his colleagues modified it to personally give him millions -- but that guy was always dirty as hell. Read the rest

Donald Trump redesigned the Presidential Challenge Coin, replacing "E pluribus unum" with "Make America Great Again"

E pluribus unum ("Out of many, one") has been an American national motto since 1782. It embodies two things trumpists hate: a highbrow phrase in a dead language deployed by early American aristos in the service of classing things up by excluding people who don't read Latin; and a message of strength through unity and diversity. Read the rest

Trump only managed one (really terrible) legislative goal in 2017, but his administration profoundly remade America for the worse

The average person in America is much more likely to come into contact with the administrative branch of the government -- the regulatory agencies the president staffs and directs -- than they are to end up in court (judiciary) or to be charged under the law (legislative). Read the rest

Trump's Space Council chief says space is "not a commons" and promises that it will become property of US corporations

In a speech last week, US National Space Council executive director Scott Pace rejected the idea that space was a "global commons" or "the common heritage of mankind" and vowed to make the USA "the most attractive jurisdiction in the world for private-sector investment and innovation in outer space." Read the rest

The Donald Trump droid is live at Disney World's Hall of Presidents

After a series of scandals and rumors, the Hall of Presidents at Walt Disney World has reopened with its Donald Trump robot, which "features the latest advances in technology that enable smoother and more lifelike movements" and "personally recorded remarks exclusively for The Hall of Presidents." Read the rest

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