An awful discovery from the past of Virginia governor Ralph Northam was discovered recently. He was dressed up in blackface, and standing beside another man in a Klan robe. To say the least, the sight of a man we once fought for and believed in was deeply dismaying. This was not an easy article to write.
A few words about the history of “Blackface” tradition might be useful to discuss as we begin. It was created by a “comedian” named Thomas Dartmouth Rice, back in the 1830s. His mother must have been proud to see her beloved child dancing around like a buffoon on a stage, singing moronically in an exaggerated black slave vernacular. Mine might have killed me, and not unjust would her crime have been.
Rice gave his character a name, a name which later became famous for far more terrible reasons: “Jim Crow.”
David Pilgrim, the curator of the Jim Crow Museum in Michigan, spoke to reporters from the Washington Post yesterday on the subject. He noted how Jim Crow and other performances featuring white men in blackface captivated white crowds up until the mid-20th century.
Now, thanks to Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam’s medical school yearbook page, blackface is back in the spotlight after this photograph emerged Friday. It was dug up by the enemies of Democrats, democracy, common sense, and decency- the insane and vicious Republicans. A former writer for the Daily Caller and Breitbart was the one who found this out. It was a hit job from the start.
Northam and us Democrats are all currently what the far right calls getting “ratf*cked”, as the fascists of Nixon’s era used to say, and helping it along really kills us. Attacking another Democrat goes against our most core beliefs.
But that’s got to take a back seat this time.
Common sense and decency, the time-honored values of the sane political center, call for us to make the decision based on more important considerations. To dress up in blackface and wear a Klan uniform is not something we can refuse to speak out on due to party loyalty. You don’t show loyalty to something by poisoning it and refusing an antidote.
Daryl Davis, a black blues musician who is known for his efforts in seeking out Klansmen to converse with to try and convert, said it best. “It doesn’t matter if the photo was from 1984, 1974 or 2004. He defined what he meant when he paired blackface with a Klan hood. Racial segregation. Racial supremacy. When you have a symbol associated with hate from the beginning, you are saying exactly what you mean.”
Millennial Democrats cannot and will not throw our base under the bus by standing with Northam on the grounds of party loyalty over this. The thought made most of us sick. So by consensus, we came together as a group and we voted on it. The decision was made to join our Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, and other top Democrats nationwide in calling for Ralph Northam to step down as the Governor of Virginia.
This is hard for us.
“Why are Democrats so loyal?” was a lament made by Donald Trump the day he pathetically caved to Speaker Pelosi and ended the shutdown. He will never understand, either, but he’s spot on in drawing this conclusion. Democrats are loyal.
Usually, when this kind of thing happens, it’s a cheap hit job and a scam, like with Senator Al Franken of Minnesota. We fought as hard as we could for him, as hard as we would for any true Democrat, so long as their conduct has earned our faith and loyalty. This has limits, however, and when something like this does come up, we have got to take an unequivocal stand. Racist notions are unacceptable. Absolutely and completely unacceptable. They are anathema to everything we stand for.
Northam’s original apology– which he then went back on this morning, adding to his mistake by compounding it- featured him giving a statement saying this happened 30 years ago, and undoubtedly that is true.
In response to this apology, which was just not enough, the words of one of our contributors felt right. So with the permission of Mr. Johnny Huckaby of Hawaii, here they are.
“Imho you have a problem with your judgment if in High School you decide to wear a racist costume. For me I wouldn’t know where to find a white hooded robe… Unless he borrowed one from his Dad or his friends? It took a lot of effort to apply the blackface makeup. So all that time he’s thinking what? Was he thinking his costume would be met with acceptance or was he fearful someone might beat him up? This is really disturbing no matter if it happened 30 years ago… Are there other instances that revealed his racism that now will come to light? I can’t look the other way at such an offensive revealing of a racist such as Ralph Northam, even if the racist is a Democrat!”
Democratic party loyalty is very real, but that is because we are loyal to a principle. That is what gathered us and drove us all into the sane center together. We believe in a multicultural world and we believe that making progress entails more of it. Loyalty to the Republicans means cronyism and carries with it clannish, secret society pact kinds of connotations.
For us, it means we fully respect and regard as a family every single member of our thriving and multicultural base.
Our diversity is our greatest strength, and whoever we choose as a leader must be able to demonstrate that they thoroughly share these values. Ralph Northam has done just the opposite. That picture was taken when he was twenty-five. He was old enough to know better.
There is a large corollary point to consider here as well, which is that an offensive joke, even a particularly grotesque one such as this is, is far from the same as a career supporting structural and systemic racism as the Republicans do and have done. ‘Build the wall’ is just the tip of the iceberg.
“Yes, the photo of Gov Northam is a form of racism that’s ugly & grotesque. But the worst racism is policy & structural racism. Those who’ve supported racist immigration laws & walls at the border & the racist separation of families & children should resign now. We can’t punish the cultural symbols & ignore the policy violence.”
That is gigantic, and incidents involving past discoveries of racism should be designed to illustrate the point. In the last analysis, doing the right thing is not always easy, but that is irrelevant. Northam is done, and he must step down, just as he let himself down, and let us down by extension.
Our Democratic leadership has called for his resignation, and it is with a heavy heart that we must join them. Please step down, sir, and in so doing, show the world the difference between the conscienceless Republicans and us.
Frankly, what more can you really ask out of a single day? Speaking on my own behalf, I can say for sure. I couldn’t be any happier if I had won the lottery. I have just been sick over where this country is headed. Eight hundred thousand federal workers, going for a month without pay. It’s been one indignity after another, since the day this began and long before.
Trump’s presidency is now two years and five days old, and every day of it has been an insult to common sense and decency. Remember the first travel ban? He hadn’t been in office for two weeks, and it was worldwide pandemonium in airports. Seven continents worth of airports, clogged and logjammed with people who were suddenly- and artificially- stranded. That was the first time Trump caused a disaster for America- disaster is his favorite word- but it sure wasn’t the last. He has used this word constantly all throughout his political career. But ever since the Democrats retook the House, he has been using actual disasters as a bargaining chip and a way to deflect attention. He is said to have been convinced Pelosi would cave, and he lamented deeply.
Who knows what Trump was thinking. It’s unreal that he could have self-deluded to this extent. If he thought he was going to come in here and bluster and bully Nancy Pelosi into giving him a wall, that’s a joke. Our Speaker could probably beat that old clown in a fistfight, let alone the political arena. Remember the G7 Summit in 2017, when he had to ride a golf cart behind all the other world leaders, who were all in shape and walking? That was great for our world image, let me tell you. Old, winded, out-of-shape America. Just look at them. So much for the Art of the Deal.
Disasters they are, but the disasters are of his own creation. This is a gigantic humiliation for Trump. He capitulated completely, but not before nearly tanking the economy, causing thousands of federal workers to file for unemployment relief, and causing significant cracks in that base of his that used to forgive him anything. His poll numbers went into nuclear meltdown. He got not one dollar for a wall. He shut the government down for absolutely nothing, and he is now the laughingstock of every single person in the world. He’s on Twitter at this very moment, whining about how he wishes people would “listen to his words” about why this is not the most gigantically cowardly and buffoonish concession in the history of all mankind. You’ve got to be kidding. This is the penultimate cave. It’s the Mammoth of caves. It’s really more like a cavern.
Thirty-five days, the government stayed shut down over this. What a total and gigantic waste. Citizens were about to lose their food stamps, and that would have really killed people, especially the sick and the very old. Trump came very close to committing his administration’s second atrocity; we’ve known for a while that his administration’s ICE has literally lost nearly fifteen hundred little kids, so we can’t call it the first. This one would have been all his fault, though. No one else to blame; Trump starved old people to death to get Russiagate out of the news. Quite a legacy; perhaps that’s why he caved. If so, it would be the one worthy thing he has done during this whole affair, which of course is why the conservatives are reviling him, specifically as a “Wimp”.
Ann Coulter congratulated the departed George Herbert Walker Bush on no longer being the biggest wimp ever to hold the office. Undoubtedly, that is so. The whole thing was the ravings of an idiot in the first place, a foolish campaign promise, something for the slobs at his rallies to scream for alongside “Lock ‘er up!” Rep. Peter T. King (R-N.Y.) blames the far-right Freedom Caucus. “I hope he ignores them for the next three weeks,” King said. “It’s the charge of the Light Brigade. It’s the Valley of Death.”
These days it’s not Hillary Clinton who is facing prison time and getting locked up. It’s all of Trump’s friends, and that brings us to the second piece of the day’s big news. This morning, federal prosecutors kicked in the door of Roger Stone, self-described political dirty trickster, and hauled him off to jail. It cost him $250,000 to bail himself out, which he probably got from some Russian still hoping to hit an easy lick. We’d like to say that’s over with for Russia. Unfortunately, Bernie Sanders had to try and spoil the day by running for president again, so there will probably be plenty of fresh acrimonies for them to exploit, especially during the primaries. We’ll get to that soon. For tonight, we would like to say God bless America and express to him our deepest gratitude. Because very soon we will be saying goodbye to Donald Trump.
Roger Stone may have sworn his loyalty, but that won’t do Donald any good, because Roger is just a poser anyway. No serious person would tattoo Richard Nixon’s face on their back. He missed the boat on Watergate and has spent the rest of his life yearning for the halcyon days when domestic fascism was strong enough to create this kind of scandal without the help of Russian rubles. Sleep well, Roger Stone. You sold out your country to the Russians, the worst enemies of America. And while the others did it for greed, or because of misplaced convictions based on sexism, you did it strictly out of malice, because that is what you do. Enjoy going down in the history books next to Benedict Arnold and Vidkun Quisling.
How sweet it is. Remember that one documentary for Netflix he did, Get Me Roger Stone? “I revel in your hate!” he defiantly shot at Democrats. Hate isn’t the word, exactly; more like loathing and disgust. We might have thrown up our hands then, but now we’re smoothing back our hair with them. Go ahead and revel, then, Rog. Have a blast, right there in your prison cell, eating Ramen noodles with Paul Manafort. His We’ll all be reveling together, in that case. It’s been a great day for America. Today, we stayed the land of the free, and the home of the brave. We have not, as Mark Twain once said, exchanged our honor for a phrase. If a phrase is needed, then perhaps this Republican president of yesterday’s will suffice.
“Mr. President, tear down that wall.” -Ronald Reagan
Here on the eve of the confirmation of the new Attorney General pick, William Barr, questions abound about the Russiagate investigation and the eventual fate of the special counsel Robert Mueller chosen to administrate it. Barr has been critical of Mueller’s investigation but has stated that he will not interfere. We’ll see. To put it mildly, serious reasons exist to doubt the sincerity of America’s abortive failure of a forty-fifth president when he says he will not fire Mueller, the man who has compiled the case that will likely destroy him. Barr seems like a rubber stamp brought in to do just that, the hatchetman of Russian assets. We hope he proves us wrong.
If Trump does fire Mueller, it will be highly reminiscent of another corrupt president who fired a special prosecutor, president Richard Milhous Nixon. Nixon’s firing of Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox began the end of his presidency, and so conventional wisdom has held that Trump will not go there. Congressional Republicans have also said that the firing of the special counsel Mueller would be a crossing of the line for them, although it’s true we have no reason to believe them either. They have caved to Trump on everything and often in the most shameful imaginable ways. Devin Nunes, former chairman of the House Intelligence Oversight Committee, was recently found to be deliberately covering up House findings in order to protect Trump.
When considered as part of the whole incident, it seems clear this could be destined to bring us into uncharted territory completely if Trump does go the Nixon route. It wouldn’t save him, and it would damn him further in the opinion of many, but he wouldn’t resign as Nixon did. His conduct during the lengthening and unnecessary #TrumpShutdown proves him once again to be utterly without scruples. It is certain he will use the country as hostages again in the process of getting the Russiagate spotlight off of him. Thus, we have no choice but to conclude that the conventional wisdom- which also did not predict the shutdown, or the fool’s errand that was the travel ban, or the Helsinki debacle, or any number of other horrible things- is probably wrong again.
Of course Trump would fire Mueller. ‘Don’t expect Trump to go quietly’, read a Washington Post article published on January 14th. He’s got the whole country held hostage at this moment, he unrepentantly lies about anything that happens to cross his mind, and he thinks he’s “winning”, whatever that even means in the context of a ruined economy and a devastated government. I guess it means getting Employee of the Month from Vladimir Putin. Firing Mueller would fit right in as the stupidest and worst for America thing he could possibly do. It’s a glaring absence in his resume as it is.
In related news, Trump, who was in the news over the weekend for having sworn his interpreters in his three closed-door meetings with Putin to secrecy, has taken an increasingly aggressive and door-closed stance toward Mueller’s requests for an in-person interview. Gone are the days when he boasts of having done nothing and means his crimes. The Trump of yesterday always said of Mueller that “No one wants to speak more than me“. That line is yesterday’s news, although references to the “Fake News Media” that has plagued him like the Furies remain plentiful. As usual, Trump blames himself for nothing, and provides an object- and abject- example to American children of what a spoiled brat at its worst can do.
News that the special counsel has already drafted a report- a report that draws the most damning possible conclusions- joined the confiscation of notes taken during his closed-door meetings with Putin as the two top stories in the news this weekend. Trump‘s behavior toward the Russian president was the focus of Watergate journalist Carl Bernstein on Sunday, when he appeared on CNN’s Reliable Sources. While there, Bernstein- whose investigative journalism helped to take down Nixon- said the special counsel investigating Trump will find he “helped Putin destabilize the United States and interfere in the  election.” Any Facebook activist can tell you this. We’ve seen it develop from the day they prepared the Wikileaks dumps.
We would also like to give a farewell salute to the former and departing Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who did not have to pick someone who would look into this as hard as Mueller would, and acted with integrity throughout in spite of Republican reviles. His decency and professionalism will be missed.
In the last analysis, from the standpoint of this illegitimate infantile president, sitting back and letting this atomic report fall on him would most likely be better than trying to resist the inevitable by trying to bring this to an end. Cracks in Trump’s base are said to be forming at last, and as these people realize what they’ve been buying into, more and more of them will be looking for a new home, and a sane alternative. Our capacity to find this for them will prove to be a critical part of success for us as we move forward. Russia has been the chiefest enemy of America for nearly a hundred years now, and most Americans still know that. Reminding them is the way to go moving forward.
The New York Times reported late Friday that federal investigators are said to have become so alarmed by Trump’s conduct after he fired former FBI director James Comey that they at once opened a probe into whether the orange infant in the White House has been secretly working with Russia, all along, for Putin himself.
According to sources considered reliable by that venerable newspaper, counterintelligence officials were assigned to the case.
Let’s talk about that word for a minute, counterintelligence. Google Dictionary gives an excellent working definition. It refers to activities designed to prevent or thwart spying, intelligence gathering, and sabotage by an enemy or other foreign entity. Therefore, counterintelligence agents are only assigned to cases serious enough to be considered a risk to national security.
In other words, this is earth-shaking beyond all belief for Donald Trump.
Russia is and has for much of our history been the chief global rival of America. For our president to be in the actual employ of their president is clearly a worst-case scenario. We’ve been saying this for years, of course.
Now the big boys are saying it too.
For a counterintelligence committee to be examining not only whether Trump’s actions were undermining national security, but also whether he was working at the behest of the Kremlin, is clearly of the most phenomenal importance.
On Rachel Maddow‘s Friday night television show, AM Joy Reid of MSNBC was standing in, and hosted Former Assistant Director of Counterintelligence Frank Figliuzzi for an interview. He said that the FBI would only even consider a decision of this magnitude without having evidence of the most utterly compelling nature, something on the level of taped conversations and the like.
Trump has been screaming for years that the whole Russian collusion story is nothing but fake news, and his sheer vehemence gave him some early successes in getting people to stop using the word.
Collusion is back on the table to stay, after this.
Just last week Time tracked down the man Deripaska used to get Manafort to pay up. “He owed us a lot of money,” Victor Boyarkin told Time. “And he was offering ways to pay it back … I came down on him hard.”
As much as Manafort is a detestable character, what does it say about America, that Russians can come over here and push our people around like this with impugnity? This has to be stopped at once. It is our opinion that the Russian Mafia, the feared ROC, should be pored over and removed from its influence from every scrap of our fair nation. Not even the garbage should be left over for them- aluminum cans are worth billions! Just ask Oleg Deripaska.
Kilimnik, a shadowy and truant figure long believed to hold many pieces of this puzzle, is known by the nickname of Manafort’s Manafort. He is connected to Russian intelligence services like the GRU, which also hosted Fancy Bear and Guccifer 2.0, the hackers who got Julian Assange the hacked DNC emails that he dumped on us through Wikileaks.
The Wikileaks succeeded beyond their wildest imaginations.
Nevertheless, the Bernie Bots and Bros rioted in the streets of Philadelphia over minor written exchanges proving that Debbie Wassermann-Schultz and Bernie did not like each other. It was the biggest single coup of the Trump campaign’s whole summer, and also the night that Russiagate became something tangible.
The Russians were said to be overjoyed. The emails themselves were played up so much by Trump and his base that by the time they were released, it did not matter what was in them, and it turned out to be nothing to an extent that was simply huge.
The information pipeline that got all this done featured Manafort, his campaign deputy Rick Gates, and Kilimnik funneling many files full of Trump campaign information to bring back to Deripaska, and received many back in return. It was reciprocal and totally coordinated. Manafort knew what he was doing to America every last step of the way.
Deripaska’s not that much of a political guy, but he does have one big interest in giving Trump a hand. He is extremely close to Putin and relies on him to keep his personal fortune. All of Russia works and eats at Putin’s order; he has more control than Stalin did over there.
In the last analysis, Manafort was not chosen because of his consummate skill or charming personal characteristics. He was chosen because he was convenient, due to the money he owed for those Cayman Island hotels he burned up Deripaska’s friendship for. Many email exchanges between the two indicate Manafort’s frequent and pleading queries as to whether or not the two of them were “good”. He had that Boyarkin ogre ready to pick his bones, he was scared, and he’d been their guy so long by then that he felt there was no turning back.
So he made a devil’s bargain to sell out his country, in order to save his behind. That is the most rotten and cowardly choice that anyone can ever make. Manafort’s name will be reviled throughout all of human history, and as with the Benedict Arnolds and Vidkun Quislings of history, his name will be held up as an example of greed and cowardice to serve mankind’s final generations with a lesson that resounds with eternal importance.
Going forward, we must reexamine the entire concept of treason. We should view the Cold War as a conflict which never ended, but rather shifted forms and chosen new battlefields in the virtual realms of politics. In that scenario, Trump would be a traitor by every metric, and this is the most truthful narrative.
In the months leading up to the Blue Wave earlier this month, special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation went all but silent, a nod to fairness and decency from the Justice Department, who did not want to influence the elections by showing all the people what an utter swine its Republican president is just before they went to the polls.
The elections ended, America took a deep breath, and all of us waited for the report that’s been so long in coming.
Then things started exploding.
At this point developments with Russiagate are coming so hot and heavy that it’s hard to keep up with them all. Paul Manafort’s plea agreement has been violated because he lied to Mueller’s prosecutors and got caught. Sometimes the lies we humans tell are quite revealing.
At any rate, he can’t go back on it. That plea is final, and Manafort has admitted his guilt. They may also now hit him with the old charges they’d withheld. Looking like life in prison for that guy, or Russian radiation poison on the streets when he gets out. Nobody’s fault but his own.
Another guy who did some pleading was Trump’s old lawyer Michael Cohen, just today, admitting that he perjured himself in last year in front of Congress about the proposed Trump Tower project in Moscow that was being planned out during the campaign.
Cohen made his admission while pleading guilty Thursday in federal court to a charge from special counsel Robert Mueller’s office. He also had some other interesting things to say about the role of the fascinating person known as Individual One in recent court filings. Who is this primary source of a person, you ask?
None other than our very own non-president, Donald Trump.
Cohen made it contritely clear that he lied out of a sense of obligation to Trump. “I made these statements to be consistent with Individual-1’s political messaging and out of loyalty to Individual-1,” Cohen said.
Individual-1 was identified in court filings as Trump. And Cohen identified him as such in a New York courtroom Thursday.
Mueller has now honed in officially on the man who colluded with our worst enemy to steal the highest office in our land- yet never learned the way to spell collusion. It makes one feel a tiny twinge of pity for the demented old man. He isn’t the world’s worst man, he’s just a foolish and silly one.
His friends, however, are the very worst. And he was in constant contact with them all the way through this thing, just as we here at Millennial Democrats have joined millions of other Democrats in predicting from Day One. He was on the phone left and right with Roger Stone, and Stone was in touch with Guccifer 2.0. Probably he had a pipeline of some sort to Julian Assange at Wikileaks.
In related news, Assange is to be tried for espionage as soon as we can roust him from his Ecuadorian embassy home and get him back here to answer for his crimes. He too has his day in court coming.
Emails between Stone and right-wing conspiracy theorist Jerome Corsi, who has said he expects to be indicted for his own role in this whole mess, provide bedrock evidence that every word of the Trump team’s party line is provably false. One wonders just how long Mueller has known about all this.
Either way, Corsi told investigators that Stone, his associate, asked him in the summer of 2016 to get in touch with WikiLeaks. They needed data about unreleased materials relevant to the presidential campaign, the draft court papers say.
“Get to (Assange) [a]t Ecuadorian Embassy in London and get the pending (WikiLeaks) emails,” it said. How much more clear can you get?
In the meantime, Trump himself is in the same old meltdown mode he has been in since before he even got elected. He’s in over his head, and must now play his role as he’s been paid to. We have always known that Putin has something on him, and it’s looking like we’re very close to finding out what.
Expect Trump to lash out in desperation, he has none of Nixon’s principles and all of his meanness and corruption. He will never quietly resign, and might do anything trying to save himself. Victory is near, but that is always the most dangerous time. Great caution and attention must be paid to the following two months.
One thing is for sure, however. We will be here for it, raising awareness and giving you the facts. See you in the trenches!
Wikileaks founder Julian Assange has been indicted by the United States! It’s a beautiful day for a neighbor.
This story’s release was not destined for the front page- at least, not right away. It was found in an unsealed court filing in an unrelated case. The document contained the phrase “Assange has already been charged”. What is thought to be a simple copy/paste error has got the entire world talking.
Assange is and has been a criminal and a digital terrorist worldwide. He also is a suspected rapist. Assange has now been hiding out in his Ecuadorian embassy home for two years. He is said to live in slovenly conditions and recently had to be ordered by the courts of Ecuador to feed his cat. Animal abuse, no less! It’s time to bring this man to justice.
Wikileaks, under his direction, has attempted to cut the throat of American intelligence time and time again. He has disrupted the functioning of our country in every way he’s been able to think up.
He is an enemy of America, and he made himself that way, for no real reason. He did this to himself for fame and glory. Still, American law has been hesitant to condemn him, for fear of setting a precedent of discouraging investigative journalism. It’s important to be decent, even when the guy you’re up against is not.
Assange claims to be neutral, both in general and in regard to our 2016 election, but every single leak ever released by his outlet was designed to hurt Hillary Clinton and no one else. He claimed that was because no data was ever sent to WikiLeaks, about the Sanders or Trump campaigns.
However, the decidedly non-neutral Roger Stone had what he called a “Perfectly Legal” back channel to Assange, who got the electronic documents from the entity known as Guccifer 2.0, who was later proven to be a Russian intelligence officer working for the GRU.
There is nothing more important than a free press, an independent press like the one Putin destroyed in Russia. That is not in question. But there is a big difference between journalism and doxing, and the difference is that one is edifying and one is malicious. One seeks to educate and enlighten, and the other seeks only to destroy. In the last analysis, intent speaks for itself, and you get what’s coming to you.
Humanitarian concerns keep us from wishing physical harm on the man. The death penalty is wrong, and torture is wrong, regardless of the circumstances, no matter how egregious the criminal. We don’t feel he should be waterboarded at Guantanamo- the hole at United States Penitentiary-Leavenworth is hard enough. And even though the slipup was actually revealed in a pedophilia case, it is important to note that Assange has only allegedly raped two women in Sweden. Those are two more of the reasons why he needs to be taken somewhere and tried.
When Ecuador first gave asylum to Assange, he was still a hero to many on the left, and to many opponents of “US imperialism”. This sentiment runs deep in South America, and not unjustly so. So he was given asylum; a very decent act on the part of Ecuador.
But that was before he started using their place to hack our elections and do harm to everyone who’s breathing. What a guy. If I were Assange, I would start a GoFundMe for commissary.
Laxalt is Brett Kavanaugh‘s fellow party animal, a college hard drinker whose wild past is well documented. The woman, one Danielle P., recently flew all the way to Las Vegas to tell her story.
Danielle P. told reporters at CBS 8 KLAS TV news that she was raped by Adam Laxalt in New Orleans when he was a student at Tulane University in late 1996. During that same time, Laxalt was arrested for assault. He entered rehab right after that. Signs of a guilty conscience? Time to make a change, perhaps?
Rapists never change, and even Laxalt’s family– whose members came out against his candidacy earlier this week- seem to know it.
The tendency of the Republicans to be the Sex Offender Party has grown stronger with every election since 2016, when avowed “Pussy Grabber” Donald Trump managed to steal the presidency. Roy Moore comes to mind. Perhaps it all started with Clarence Thomas, who had molested a law professor named Anita Hill and then whined his way out of it. Republicans did not care and did not want to see him held accountable.
Today, things are not different.
The visceral disgust most of us felt when imagining Kavanaugh, his face drunken and twisted on the stand, making policies for our country for the rest of his life, is very real. We’ve got decades of disgrace to come for that one, regardless of who tried to stop it.
The most respected theological professor in America, Kenneth Appold, offered to personally corroborate the claims of Deborah Ramirez, Kavanaugh’s second victim to come forth with her story. Even he was ignored, along with the rest of Trump’s base among the Christian evangelical community of America.
With all this in mind, it should come as a surprise to absolutely no one that the Republican candidate for governor of Nevada, Adam Laxalt, most likely raped a woman 22 years ago and has aggressively been trying to cover it up.
Laxalt’s lawyers have threatened at least four Nevada news outlets for covering the story. It’s being covered up.
The exposer of this information, Lou Colagiovanni, has been slandered and reviled for his attempts to bring the truth to light, implying him to be a stooge of the Democratic Party, but as he made his bones destroying Democrat Anthony Weiner, who was a molester also, this seems like a bit of a stretch.
The difference is that when Anthony Weiner went down, we didn’t act like it was the end of the world or like a personal attack had been levied against us. We don’t want any child molesters hanging around like wolves within our flock or rapists either. We don’t help scum hide out in our ranks. That is not who we are.
That’s why Al Franken resigned when he was accused, even though a tasteless joke is not the same as rape and he was set up by the machinations of Roger Stone, political dirty trickster. He knew how important it is that women who have been victimized thus have a way to tell their story, which requires that they be believed. He didn’t want to hurt #MeToo, and he set a good example. He also demonstrated for all time the difference between honest and decent Democrats and the Molester Squad that is the GOP.
The Laxalt story is coming out now, but only in a trickle. It’s a week before the election. We need a flood.
Help to send this viral! Tell everyone you know! It’s a week before the election, and this guy has managed to keep this under wraps the whole time! For twenty-two years! That’s disgusting! It cannot and must not be allowed! We can’t have half the politicians in our country being pervert molester sick people. Who wants this?
Scum like this have to be held accountable. And if larger media sites refuse to do it, or can’t do it without hurting themselves legally, then we at Millennial Democrats will. We’re joining a larger effort; best of luck to all our allies. Together, we will prevail.
What’s more, we’ve got a bargain to offer Laxalt and his lawyers and the rest of the Grand Old Pederasts.
You cease to commit fresh sex offenses, and we’ll desist from reporting on them.
A Fox News interview the other night saw Kavanaugh trying desperately to regain his momentum, using what a chess player or movie buff might call the 40-year old Virgin Defense. Remained a virgin well into his twenties, according to him.
Are we supposed to feel sorry for him?
It was weird. Real weird. Here’s a guy who is about to be serving in the highest court in the land, the United States Supreme Court, and he’s on TV listing off all the sexual stuff he did as a young man. Creepy. Gross. Nobody cares, dude. T.M.I.
Kavanaugh’s own feelings about his conduct have receded into insignificance at this point. It’s out of his control completely. Trumpism is about to get hit with #metoo head on. This is the year of the Democratic woman; I wouldn’t be on the other side of this for all the money ever made by man.
Trump himself has launched into a full-blown assault on the attackers. That’s what rape culture is, in case anyone reading this has ever wondered. The victims are the ones who end up on trial because the powerful men the attackers resemble can see it happening to them. They think they’re fighting for their right to party.
One person who vehemently took sides with no facts used to be a decent sort of guy, Lindsey Graham, the Republican Senator from North Carolina. Trump has been chumming him up since the start. Looks like it’s working.
Graham went beyond what is publicly known about the Christine Blasey Ford accusation that Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her as a teenager, saying “everybody named in regard to being there said it didn’t happen.”
Not quite, bud.
Kavanaugh “said it didn’t happen, that much is true. But he also said he was never even in the room, or at the party.
His ex-roommate Mark Judge said otherwise. He was quite clear about Kavanaugh’s having been at the party, and in the room with Dr. Ford. He just denied the events took place within them.
There were another two witnesses also, but they also didn’t go so far as to say, as Graham suggested, that nothing ever happened. Mr. Patrick J. Smyth, and Ms. Leland Ingham Keyser both said they had no recollection of the party that Ford described.
That is why former Minnesota Senator Al Franken resigned last year when he was accused by conservative talk show host Leeann Tweeden in a smear operation cooked up by Roger Stone.
All he ever did was to make a tasteless joke, but even so, he was willing to give up his seat in Congress to set an ethical example for the rest of us, and to be a good ally to women. He is missed, and so is his sense of decency, growing thinner by the day in the nation’s fair capital.
Trump, in his petty rage and blind arrogance, is threatening to take away the Mueller probe and throw even more disorder into the country if we don’t give him his Kavanaugh.
To this man, the fate and future of the country are just poker chips in his casino- and it went out of business long ago.
Meanwhile, the other Republicans are still clinging to Kavanaugh for all that they are worth. Rush Limbaugh said Republicans can “Kiss the Midterms Goodbye,” if they don’t confirm Kavanaugh. They fear to dampen the enthusiasm of their voters by ditching him before the midterms.
The thought of the harm it might do the country to have a potential pervert in our highest judiciary is not considered at all, so long as he will vote like a crony in the future and put his name on all their lousy schemings. That is their M.O. these days. Ask Roy Moore. Sex offenses and the Senate don’t mix, and the Supreme Court is not a better match.
Understandably, we will fight like a drowning man to save ourselves and our nation from that fate, and this too the Republicans know. That is why Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell gave a shout out to the Resistance in the form of a bitter revile. “Whatever it took– whatever the truth really was- they were going to do whatever they could to stop this…”
To them both, we would like to say this: It is not too late to make the right decision, and to use your power to stop this. Resist party pressure. Vote with your heart. Do what it takes to keep our country great, like it always has been.
We have received numerous requests for a focus piece regarding cyber-defense for Democrats, especially right now as we are going into the midterms. In it is an introduction to a number of the techniques we can use to defend ourselves going forward. Knowledge is power. Pass it on.
Regular readers of Millennial Democrats will not require a lot of explanation as to how and why the threat of Russian hacking is real. We have been up against it for years. The time has come to soberly and objectively assess Russia’s cyberwarfare capabilities, and examine how we plan to fight back.
In 2016, America was caught off guard and we got a bloody nose. Guys like Roger Stone’s buddy Guccifer 2.0, or the guys in Fancy Bear pulled a fast one, to be sure.
They had the element of surprise back then. Most people had no idea what they were doing(and rolled their eyes at those who were trying to warn them, but that’s another subject). These days things are very different.
Regardless of the lies of the great orange malignance, America knows the Russians are out to get us. Trump is sticking his head in the sand on this and will do nothing to help us, so we’re going to have to learn to help ourselves, and each other.
It’s too bad we’ve got no national leadership on this, but it is what it is. We’ll get by on our own.
In starting out, the most important thing to keep in mind is this: Hackers rely on our mistakes, and mistakes are most often made when we don’t know we are making them. They need to catch us off guard, and their job is to find creative ways to use their tools to get us to slip up.
The first place a smart hacker will look is outside the box, so to speak. They’re always looking for ways to burrow in that you wouldn’t think to look for.
Employing a given system, be it a human being or a PC, for a purpose it wasn’t designed for is what hacking means. However, if you’re careful, neither you nor your computer will end up thus employed. It’s all about being careful.
Hackers are clever, be they Russian or from elsewhere, but they are far from invincible. We’ve already stopped a number of Russian cyber-assaults directed at Democrats this year, such as the ones aimed at our Claire McCaskill.
Without the element of surprise, hackers have many limitations. It’s not that easy to brute-force open a website. Just ask these guys:
Basic cyber-hygiene techniques would cut down on more than 80 percent of cyber attacks and cyber thefts, according to Herbert Lin, senior research scholar for cyber policy and security at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution. It will benefit us to learn a few.
There is a great deal of white-hat(ethical hacking) work that can be done to defend America in this realm, and most of it has to do with how careful we are.
We repeat- It’s all about being careful. This cannot be repeated too often.
In this piece, we’re going to talk about a few common mistakes made by end-users(that means us, the consumer) and how they are exploited by criminals. We’re also going to talk about some of these cyber-hygiene measures and assign them three rules of thumb.
Don’t open strange emails.
Don’t click on strange links.
Don’t accept chat messages from people you don’t know, particularly on Facebook.
Before we get started, think for a second about all your other social media accounts. Are they just as secure as your Facebook or Twitter? Make sure they are! That’s the first place a hacker will go to collect more data about you. You’re particularly vulnerable to having your account on the ones you don’t often use pried open.
As an aside, this is also why you don’t want to use the same passwords for everything. Passwords are obviously critical, as somebody who’s got them has got all your information at his fingertips. Be careful!!
A great deal of a hacker’s job revolves around getting the passwords of their victims. Their most popular tools are all various ways to apply “spear-phishing” hacks, designed to steal passwords and personal data. The unlucky “phish” who opens one has become a victim and is now open to all kinds of trouble.
There are all kinds of ways to go spear-phishing. A brand new one showed up not long ago when U.S. government agencies recently received letters via snail mail.
One example that all readers of this blog will vividly recall took place on March 10, 2016, when the first volley of malicious e-mail messages hit the inboxes of thirty people who were closely associated with the Hillary Clinton campaign. Inside them were links that were actually viruses, like worms on a hook.
Nearly all of them were failures. All but one, actually. But one was enough.
Within nine days, a horrendous amount of critical data had been stolen and passed along to Wikileaks, to be strategically released in a way they figured would hurt us. It did.
Those leaked e-mails, in which Debbie Wasserman-Schultz was seen to be fussing over Bernie’s lack of ability to fill out campaign finance forms correctly, were spun up into a narrative that Bernie(who lost by four million popular votes) had been cheated.
Bernie or Bust bought it, there were riots in the streets of Philadelphia, and a rift was torn in the Democratic Party that still has yet to heal.
All of that was made possible, with just a few phished passwords.
To combat phishing is to make sure everyone knows how common and damaging these attacks can be. Everyone should keep their guard up when checking emails, and they should report any email they find suspicious.
It’s necessary to point out here that Facebook phishing in particular is horrendously easy. They can hack you right through your chat box. We recommend in the strongest possible terms that you put as little of your personal information as possible on Facebook.
Facebook presents about a million added vulnerabilities to all of us that use it. When Edward Snowden was asked what to do to keep your data safe on that platform, his response was, “Delete your account.”
We can’t recommend that, as Facebook gives us access to 2 billion people, but we can recommend this much. If people you don’t know send you strange messages on Facebook, don’t accept them.
“We are looking at just some of the malicious material that already may be circulating or will be released before the midterms. It also bears repeating that we know the campaign of Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) was targeted.”
Cyber-intelligence experts see this as being major, and with clear reason.
Moving on, it isn’t only Facebook and social media you’ve got to be careful with. Websites too are vulnerable.
Anecdotally, the webmaster of this site has seen hackers from all over the world try to take us down, from Beijing, China to Lviv, Ukraine, from Adelaide, Australia to Beauharnois, Quebec. They use all kinds of tricks, but they’ve never gotten in and they never will.
This is not because I’m a cyber-genius who speaks binary code, but because WordPress is awesome.Sucuri, the plugin that keeps safe all of us Millennial Democrats, is likewise excellent. They care about their clients and they hold the same liberal values sacred that we do.
WordPress users should strongly consider using Sucuri, not least for the reverse IP trace it automatically performs. This has the benefit of letting you know a lot more about who’s trying to hack you. Sometimes it will tell you everything.
Once a flower store owner from Adelaide, Australia tried to hack us. By using a reverse IP trace, Sucuri let us know who she was as soon as she had done so. Then we went to a site called WhatismyIPaddress.com, put it in, and voila.
We were able to get the name of her business by looking at the name of her domain. We then used that to look her up, and jackpot. We found the store’s address, website, and owner. We also found far-right garbage smeared all over her life.
I could put her on blast right here with a screenshot like this one:
Luckily for her, I’m not that mean. But the next guy might be. It’s a dangerous game for newbies (noobs- learn your hacker-ese) to play. It’s easy to run into trouble.
Change your life, would-be hacker flower store owner! Mend your wicked ways, before it’s too late.
Speaking of WordPress, using the two-factor authentication feature they offer as part of their platform is another good idea. This is a highly effective security measure and is available for Facebook, Gmail, WordPress, and many other major platforms.
Using this feature means a second device’s input will be required to access email accounts or websites on new computers, usually by prompting you and sending an SMS code to your phone or whatever. This can prevent scammers from accessing compromised accounts.
In addition to good cyber-hygiene, which amounts to common sense, caution, and our three rules of thumb, there are some tools we can use to make our online experience safer still. You may find this necessary, from time to time.
Guccifer 2.0 recently made a mistake and forgot to turn his VPN on, and we connected him to an IP address connected to Russian intelligence. Now his whole identity is blown because he didn’t use his VPN.
We strongly recommend getting one of these, specifically IVPN. They take protecting their customers super seriously and they are located on the Rock of Gibraltar. That fortress strikes me as a good place to keep anything valuable.
HotspotShield is another good one, and also NordVPN. There’s a lot of them; shop around and find one that’s right for you. We feel it’s worth repeating that they are a very good investment.
Additional tools include TOR(The Onion Router), which offers a former naval encryption system that we can now all use. Tor takes all your internet traffic and routes it through its own network, providing total anonymity.
The DuckDuckGo browser, which Tor employs, is good to know about also. It has a number of different features that keep you safe, including a “Flame” feature that burns up all your cookies in a second. Pretty cool.
Now, just as then, there is a need for deterrence, to defend the nation and hopefully prevent a further escalation of tensions. There is more at stake than we can even put into words. We need to be ready.
There are bigger dangers here than the usual America vs. Russia, liberal world order vs the new world order that the extremist crazies keep screaming that they want kind of thing. This is different completely.
One superpower actively destroying the democratic process of another is new and very dangerous, especially since Russian destability tactics rely heavily on disinformation and a systematic devaluing of the truth.
“For example, on or about July 27, 2016, the Conspirators attempted after hours to spearphish for the first time email accounts at a domain hosted by a third-party provider and used by Clinton’s personal office.”
July 27 2016 was the night of the first 2016 presidential debate. During that debate, Trump memorably said “Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing… I think you will probably be rewarded mightily…”
Barton Gellman, a leading intelligence reporter, responded to this revelation in a tweet: “This is OMFG material. Trump explicitly asks ‘Russia’ to hack Clinton, and Russian intelligence starts trying *the same day*. We look for secret evidence of ‘collusion’ but Trump’s end was always in plain sight. Now we know Russia took his request as a guide to further crimes.”
The indictment also made specific mention of “a person who was in regular contact with senior members of the presidential campaign of Donald J. Trump,” seeking to “help u.”
That got people talking. Right away. And not long after, the conversation came around to Roger Stone.
Stone previously boasted screenshots of the conversation online, in which Guccifer 2.0 wrote, “please tell me if i can help u anyhow… it would be a great pleasure to me.” That was back in the good old days before the indictments started coming down and dozens of people started going to prison.
Since then, his tone has changed a little.
“My 24-word exchange with someone on Twitter claiming to be Guccifer 2.0 is benign,” he pleaded in a text to Rolling Stone.
You’re entitled to your opinion, Rog, but the rest of the world does not agree.
In related news, photos have been circulating the Internet of Roger Stone’s old partner and possible future cellmate Paul Manafort, disheveled and miserable and inside of a prison cell. It might not be as spiffy as the office of their old lobbying firm, but it will have to do.
There is a certain sense of vindication, in seeing what we all have been warning people about these last two horrible years laid right down in black and white. Roger Stone is almost certainly going to prison, and that too is a decent consolation prize.
But there’s also a tremendous frustration at the lack of an appropriate response coming down from the White House.
Trump is still meeting with Putin on Monday, and he’s still holding rallies for his base on a regular basis. History will revile him for this and for everything else. Until the Blue Wave comes in November, we must draw our comfort from that.
In the meantime, we’ve got hard fighting up ahead, and we are ready for it. This is what we’ve been training for, ever since the elections.
In the weeks to come, we’re going to be focusing a lot on cybersecurity measures we can take, and on key Democratic primary races that the Russians or Republicans may target. Gaslighting is likely to be the least of it.