Aldous J. Pennyfarthing

Donald Trump's trading cards appear to be poorly-edited stock images or taken from catalogs

Hmm, what could possibly make the mortal embarrassment surrounding Donald Trump’s recent MAJOR ANNOUNCEMENT even worse? Oh, Satan, please send him more tribulation! Exactly how many albino goats does one have to sacrifice to get you to do one’s bidding? Because the goat viscera is really piling up in the garage, and you can’t put it in the city compost for some reason. Just saying.

So you no doubt saw that Trump’s big reveal was yet another grift—this time in the form of NFTs (nonfungible tokens) that are worth … hmm, I guess whatever Trump says they’re worth. But in reality ... hahahaha! ... nothing. And not only are they worth nothing, apparently any slackjawed yob with Photoshop and an Amazon account could have made their own versions.

PC Magazine:

[J]ournalists noticed(Opens in a new window) that at least some of the images for the NFTs relied on photos of clothing you can buy online. For example, an NFT showing Trump wearing a cowboy outfit seems to be based on a duster jacket from Scully Leather, which is sold on Amazon(Opens in a new window) and Walmart(Opens in a new window).
Another NFT of Trump wearing a tuxedo borrows imagery of a suit sold on Men’s Wearhouse.(Opens in a new window) Meanwhile, a separate NFT incorporated a photo of a $49 Western Sports coat(Opens in a new window).

PC Magazine also noted that Matthew Sheffield of The Young Turks had located some of the source images for Trump’s NFTs—and they weren’t from Trump’s personal Leonardo da Vinci-style sketchbook.

And Sheffield had his own writeup about Trump’s latest grift, which is about as tacky a post-presidential pursuit as one could possibly conjure. Imagine if Jimmy Carter stopped building homes for unhoused people and started selling fake Rolexes out of the back of his van. We’d be horrified. Well, this shit is arguably worse.

The Young Turks:

In a recorded video message to supporters, Trump hailed the artistic quality of the images, which appear to be assembled randomly and automatically by a computer program from a pre-defined collection of backgrounds, costumes, and heads, according to listings on the OpenSea NFT marketplace. According to the Collect Trump Cards website, the NFT graphics were designed by an illustrator named Clark Mitchell.

'These cards feature some of the really incredible artwork pertaining to my life and career, it’s been very exciting,' Trump said in the video, also noting that only a limited number of the virtual cards would be released. He also offered several sweepstakes incentives to people who purchased, including a dinner and a chance to speak to him on the Zoom video conference service.
Several of the paper doll-style images used in the cards appear to be barely modified copies of widely available photos seen on clothing retailer and stock photo websites.

Hmm, maybe the creators of these things learned Photoshop at Trump University. Then again, Trump’s supporters are unlikely to notice the piss-poor quality of this “art.” But they might notice not being able to access it:

We deserve these laughs after all the tears this guy has brought us over the past seven years. It’s been a long slog, but I think we might finally be rid of him soon. Though his defenestration could have been a bit more cinematic, perhaps. This is like if Darth Vader had died in a freak scrapbooking accident in the first act of Return of the Jedi.

On the other hand, this is just perfect. Because it’s quintessential Trump—lazy, gauche, overhyped, and utterly absurd all at once. At least one of these f*ck-yous to his fans needs to be on his tombstone.

I pick this one. I mean, what could possibly sum up his life better?

Though his estate might need permission to reprint it, because this one was probably stolen, too:

Oh, Donny. Never change.

Not like you could, even if you tried.

Sen. Ron Johnson says he can't stand it when he's 'challenged by medical experts'

It’s difficult to fully articulate how much the state of Wisconsin and the nation as a whole lost when Ron Johnson took Russ Feingold’s seat in the U.S. Senate. It was such a significant downgrade that it’s hard to come up with anything remotely comparable. Classic Coke switching to New Coke doesn’t quite capture it. It would be more like if Coke had replaced its original formula with a jar of pureed lungfish or the battery acid from an abandoned El Camino.

Johnson was elected … [the author has taken a 15-minute vomit break; please stand by] … during the tea party wave election of 2010, when a partially eaten tube of braunschweiger could have succeeded in most purple states and districts simply by running as a Republican. Having lived in Wisconsin for much of RoJo the Clown’s tenure, I’ve always told anyone who’d listen that my state dumping Feingold for Johnson felt a little like your mom divorcing your dad so she could date Carrot Top.

And true to form, Johnson’s quaggy rat brain has followed his Fried-Pie Piper down every dank conspiracy burrow imaginable. But it’s the COVID holes he’s slithered down that are the most off-putting.

On Thursday’s episode of the podcast The Highwire With Del Bigtree, Johnson let everyone know how little respect he has for medical experts who paid all that dough to get degrees from ivory-tower institutions like Harvard and Johns Hopkins when they could have learned everything worth knowing for free on Facebook. Watch:

JOHNSON: “What drives me nuts is when I’m challenged by medical experts. [Laughs] Okay, show me the data. The one that’s driving me nuts right now is this sudden adult death syndrome.”

BIGTREE: “Oh, my God. Yeah.”

JOHNSON: “I’m reading articles written about that, and the doctors are baffled. The medical experts are baffled. What could possibly be causing the death of adults just dropping dead? What could it be? And I’m going, ‘Isn’t it pretty obvious?’ I mean, you look at the VAERS report, we’re up to 28,714 deaths on the VAERS system. Did anything change in 2021? Did we do something different in medicine that just might be a possible reason for SADS? But again, the COVID cartel is completely oblivious to it.”

First of all, Johnson has been distorting the VAERS data for months, and God only knows how many people have actually died as a result of his and others’ constant drumbeat of disinformation. VAERS—which stands for “Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System”—is a database consisting of raw, unvetted reports of alleged vaccine side effects, and the Department of Health and Human Services, which hosts the database, takes pains to explain that a death reported to VAERS can’t be assumed to have been caused by vaccines.

Anyone, including Healthcare providers, vaccine manufacturers, and the public can submit reports to the system. While very important in monitoring vaccine safety, VAERS reports alone cannot be used to determine if a vaccine caused or contributed to an adverse event or illness. Vaccine providers are encouraged to report any clinically significant health problem following vaccination to VAERS even if they are not sure if the vaccine was the cause. In some situations, reporting to VAERS is required of healthcare providers and vaccine manufacturers.

VAERS reports may contain information that is incomplete, inaccurate, coincidental, or unverifiable. Reports to VAERS can also be biased. As a result, there are limitations on how the data can be used scientifically. Data from VAERS reports should always be interpreted with these limitations in mind.

This disclaimer is printed right on the VAERS website, and so you’d think a U.S. senator who keeps citing these data might have stumbled across it sometime over the past year—but apparently not.

But that’s not all! Johnson, who for some reason still goes out of his way to dissuade people from taking full advantage of lifesaving vaccinations, is also distorting information about SADS.

From a Verify fact check on sudden adult death syndrome:

SADS has existed long before the COVID-19 outbreak, and subsequent vaccines were available.

In an email to VERIFY, the SADS Foundation said the first documented case of SADS was described in Germany in 1856 and had been researched in the U.S. since the early 1970s. The SADS Foundation is an organization that provides services to educate the public about SADS.

“Over two years into the pandemic, there’s been no indication in the largest [vaccine] programs in the world of an increase in death from these conditions,” Michael J. Ackerman, MD, Ph.D., with the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine told VERIFY via the SADS Foundation.

Hmm. Whom to trust? A doctor who works at the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine or the dean of the UW Clown College? We don't want to drive Ron Johnson to drink, but I think most of us are inclined to go with the guy who actually studied medicine. Weird how that works, huh?

If you’re a glutton for harsh, soul-crushing punishment, you can listen to (and view) the entire podcast here.

Sen. Bill Cassidy says Louisiana's maternal mortality rate isn't bad if you don't count Black people

You’ll be heartened to learn that we’ve got a great country if you don’t count the plight of oppressed people or the negligence, viciousness, ignorance, and greed of the people in power. Other than that, we’re just like Denmark, only with lots more Old Country Buffets!

That’s not to say the U.S. isn’t a great country. It is. We just lose our way sometimes—and right about now I’m reminded of the soldier in the opening scene of Saving Private Ryan who stumbles around in abject confusion looking for his severed arm on the beach.

In a recent interview with Politico, Louisiana Sen. Bill Cassidy attempted to deflect attention from his state’s abysmal maternal mortality rate by blaming Black people for the barriers and systemic issues that have led to, well, high mortality rates among Black mothers.


Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) said Louisiana’s maternal mortality rate — one of the worst in the nation — does not tell the whole story of maternal health in the state because of its large Black population and the uncommonly broad definition Louisiana uses.

“About a third of our population is African American; African Americans have a higher incidence of maternal mortality. So, if you correct our population for race, we’re not as much of an outlier as it’dotherwise appear,” Sen. Bill Cassidy said in an interview with POLITICO for the Harvard Chan School of Public Health series Public Health on the Brink. “Now, I say that not to minimize the issue but to focus the issue as to where it would be. For whatever reason, people of color have a higher incidence of maternal mortality.”

For whatever reason? Hmm, what might those reasons be? Because Sen. Cassidy appears to believe it’s a big fucking mystery.

Well, for one thing, there are the socioeconomic disparities that greatly affect access to prenatal health care and health care in general, especially in this country. These disparities contribute immensely to worse outcomes. And the key driver of these disparities is—you guessed it—Republican politicians like Bill Cassidy.

Michelle Williams, the dean of Harvard’s School of Public Health, laid out numerous reasons for these terrible outcomes in response to Cassidy’s deliberately obtuse jibber-jabber. And those causes go well beyond a simple lack of access to proper care:

Another well-documented driver of disparities: During childbirth and recovery, as in other aspects of medical care, Black women have far too often been dismissed as complainers when they seek help for symptoms that can presage serious complications, such as shortness of breath or swelling legs. It happened even to Serena Williams.
Researchers have also begun to document the pernicious “weathering” effects of chronic stress among people of color. This stress, often stemming from both structural racism and individual acts of discrimination, has a corrosive effect on health over time and can affect multiple body systems, even in relatively young and otherwise healthy women. Pregnancy can magnify the impacts of weathering and lead to serious complications.

Of course, Cassidy’s “reasoning” is pretty noxious if you stop to think about what he’s saying—to white people, that is: “Hey, don't worry about it. You’re doing just fine.”

Williams again:

We have a crisis in maternal mortality in this country, and it’s a crisis of terrifying proportions for women of color. This is not a moment to quibble about how states are ranked. It’s not a moment to correct for race. It’s a moment to step up and declare that our rate of maternal mortality in the United States is shameful and unacceptable. It’s a moment to assert that Louisiana—precisely because it has such a large population of Black women—must seize a leadership role in making pregnancy and childbirth safer for all.

Of course, delving into the real reasons for these widely divergent outcomes is hard—which is why Cassidy seems content to simply throw up his hands and say “whatevs.” But while these problems may seem intractable, that perception only exists because we’ve spent so many years shrugging our shoulders and ignoring our history. So let’s ignore it even harder, shall we?

Fortunately, not everyone in Louisiana is as benighted as Cassidy.

Veronica Gillispie-Bell, the medical director of Louisiana’s Perinatal Quality Collaborative and Pregnancy Associated Mortality Review, noted that “race is a social construct, it is not a biological condition,” and poorer outcomes are always going to come down to racism whether we want to admit it or not.

“There’s two things that are always going to drive the disparities. It’s going to be systemic racism — the historical processes and policies that have been put in place that disenfranchise Black and brown people — and then the other part of that is going to be implicit bias,” said Gillispie-Bell. “Black and brown individuals don’t always get the same quality of health care in the health care system as their white counterparts.”

'We look forward to getting to know you': PAC that unseated Madison Cawthorn targets Lauren Boebert

Many D.C. politicians are—to paraphrase Winston Churchill—riddles wrapped in mysteries inside an enigma. Not so with Lauren Boebert. She’s twaddle wrapped in bacon inside an Arby’s. The congresswoman tends to wear her emotions on her sleeve, along with about 6 pounds of arrogance—apparently garnered from giving birth to offspring in weird, unsanitary places.

If voters in Colorado’s 3rd District, which Boebert somehow represents, still don’t know enough about the freshman congresswoman to reject her then we need to do something drastic, because her sins are legion. (She’s a horrible boss to her embittered employees, for one thing.)

With that in mind, the same rakish rapscallions who just successfully Moskva’d North Carolina Rep. Madison Cawthorn’s thankfully brief congressional tenure are now taking aim at Boebert’s weak-ass claim to her seat.


The group that posted a viral sexually explicit video of a nude Rep. Madison Cawthorn in bed with another man is now focusing on Rep. Lauren Boebert of Colorado for its next takedown, Insider has learned.
'I think we're going to go after Lauren Boebert in Colorado in a similar way,' David B. Wheeler, a cofounder of the American Muckrakers PAC, told Insider Wednesday. 'I think we're going to engage in that race pretty quickly.'
The group on Thursday launched, seeking tips on information, pictures, videos, or documents on Boebert or her associates. The first tweet by @FireBoebert read, 'Hi @RepBoebert - Ask @RepCawthorn about us. We look forwarding to getting to know you.'

I seriously wonder what they could reveal that would be worse than what’s already out there. What could possibly turn off her base at this point? Finding out she once read a book without pictures?

The website sports a bright red-and-orange “FIRE BOEBERT” logo and boasts a reference to Cawthorn’s recent primary loss and Boebert’s upcoming primary. “One fired May 17. The other will be fired on June 28.”

Wheeler says he’s already collected “interesting information” on Boebert, though he admits it’s “certainly not as salacious as some of the Cawthorn stuff.” He told Insider that the information relates to financial matters, though he didn’t provide specifics.

That’s somewhat tantalizing, because Boebert has already found herself in hot water over campaign finance irregularities, having improperly used campaign funds to cover personal rent and utilities. What else might she be hiding?

Be sure to stop by semi-regularly to find out. And to check out some of the “Bat Shit” messages that Boebert supporters (yes, they really do exist) have been sending the site since its launch.

'The View' thought it found a GOP 'unicorn' to replace McCain — but she's an anti-vaxxer

On Monday, POLITICO’s Playbook reported that ABC is having a hard time finding a conservative host to replace Meghan McCain on The View. The problem? It’s become impossible to find a modern conservative who won’t go on the air every weekday and try to kill thousands of Americans and/or Western democracy.

The Republican Party ain't nothin’ but a death cult these days, and it turns out that searching for the least unreasonable Branch Covidian still leaves one bereft. You’d think it would be easy to replace Meghan McCain—her currently empty chair already makes more sense than she does. A monkey who only occasionally flings poo would be an upgrade, too—but she’d have to be a Republican, and everyone knows that poo-flinging monkeys skew Libertarian.

The latest update to this saga? ABC apparently had a new conservative host in its sights, but she refused to get vaccinated, and so the Disney-owned network is back to square one—searching for that rare cryptid in the Republican Party whose knee has never bent to the shambolic mound of offal who oozed its way into every nook and crevice of the West Wing during the Great Tribulation.

The Daily Beast:

Fox News contributor Lisa Marie Boothe interviewed with ABC News and The View executives earlier this year, a source close to Boothe told The Daily Beast. Those conservations ended, this person with knowledge of the situation said, after the conservative pundit made clear to the network that she will not get any of the required jabs against the coronavirus.

An ABC News source confirmed to The Daily Beast that the network had conversations with Boothe, among “dozens and dozens” of candidates. The show never had an opportunity to offer her a guest-hosting spot or book a potential date. And once Boothe’s stance on vaccinations became apparent, the source said, further conversation became a “moot point” and a “non-starter” due to the network’s strict policies.
Aw, man. What a bummer! I’m sure an unrepentant anti-vaxxer would have been exactly the kind of measured, reasonable voice they’re searching for.

Now Disease-Vector Dorothy Parker has lost her seat at our modern-day Algonquin Roundtable.

ABC News’ parent company, the Walt Disney Co., currently requires all U.S. employees be vaccinated against the coronavirus. And New York City, where The View tapes its episodes before a live studio audience, now mandates vaccines for all private-sector workers. Fox News requires employees at its NYC headquarters to be vaccinated. Boothe, who is currently based in Miami and revealed this week that she tested positive for COVID-19, did not respond to requests for comment.

She tested positive, huh? Unfortunately, she’s still probably shedding both virus and egregious nonsense.

In October, Boothe claimed that her refusal to take the COVID-19 was “a giant middle finger to Joe Biden’s tyranny.” I can sympathize with that courageous stance, because it’s exactly the attitude I took toward cruciferous vegetables when I was seven. “Fuck you and your broccoli, lunch ladies! Tater tots in me tot-hole! Now!”

She also recently wrote a column for Newsweek titled “Why I’m Not Vaccinated.” I honestly didn’t know it was that easy to get published in Newsweek, but now that I do, I’ll be certain to FedEx them my magnum opus, “Why I let two fruit bats chew off my nipples,” tout de suite.

Anyway, here’s the sort of erudition The View is missing out on as a result of its benighted vaccination “rules.”

“The vaccine helps protect the vaccinated from dying, but it does not protect the vaccinated from either getting or spreading COVID. In other words, it seems clear to many of us that the vaccine is a personal health benefit, not a public health benefit. Therefore, whether to get vaccinated is a profoundly personal decision, not a public health decision. And not everyone is high-risk.”

Yeah, that was never true, and it still isn’t. But it was really untrue on Nov. 15, before the emergence of the wily omicron variant.

Strangely enough, that’s exactly when Newsweek published this paean to pestilence.

For the record, here’s the CDC’s guidance on this: “[A] growing body of evidence suggests that COVID-19 vaccines also reduce asymptomatic infection and transmission. Substantial reductions in SARS-CoV-2 infections (both symptomatic and asymptomatic) will reduce overall levels of disease, and therefore, SARS-CoV-2 virus transmission in the United States.”

Also, why the fuck would you denigrate a vaccine that you admit “helps protect the vaccinated from dying”? Because the virus is survivable for you? Don’t be so sure, Lisa; and here’s hoping you don’t get long COVID. Or steal a hospital bed from someone who’s living responsibly.

Boothe, of course, is apparently the sort to take joy in her failure to launch herself into Meghan’s bad hair chair.

Of course, ABC’s big fool’s search may go on indefinitely, because the parameters The View’s producers have set for their “reasonable Republican” are nearly impossible to meet.


Sources close to the show said that the search has stalled as executives struggle to find a conservative cast-member who checks all the right boxes. They will not consider a Republican who is a denier of the 2020 election results, embraced the January 6 riots, or is seen as flirting too heavily with fringe conspiracy theories or the MAGA wing of the GOP. But at the same time, the host must have credibility with mainstream Republicans, many of whom still support DONALD TRUMP.

“The problem is that they bring people on under the mantle that this woman is a conservative, when they’re ‘Never Trump,’ so they don’t represent the country,” said one of the rotating guest hosts.
“They are really looking for a unicorn,” said a former show staffer. “They want someone who is going to fight — but not too hard, because they don’t want it to be ugly and bickering.”
A unicorn? Maybe Kim Jong-un can help them out. Surely Donald Trump still has his number.

Rep. Katie Porter wins the day as she takes on Postmaster Louis DeJoy with her whiteboard

There are few things that can truly make a person palpitate in their pantaloons, but for conservatives, Rep. Katie Porter with a whiteboard is one of those things, or should be.

She should really start doing these demonstrations with a Captain America shield, because this woman is a bonafide superhero when it comes to making Republicans look corrupt and foolish.

Porter recently took aim at Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, a Trump administration holdover who is to the Postal Service what Jared Fogle currently is to Subway. DeJoy, who apparently thinks the Postal Service should run as efficiently as a Trump business, has basically eroded trust in the USPS since taking over in June of 2020. And Porter has noticed.

During a House Oversight Committee hearing on Friday, she quizzed USPS Deputy Inspector General for Auditing Melina Perez about, well, what the fuck DeJoy thinks he's doing with the fucking Postal Service.

Watch … and enjoy:


PORTER: "The audit found that, by the spring of 2020, mail delivery was right around 92%. That is, about 92% of the mail got there within the standard of on-time. That dropped to 80% by the fall of 2020, and by January of 2021 was hovering at around 61%. I realize this has gone up somewhat since then, but I wanted to ask you, when did Mr. DeJoy take over as postmaster? Do you know?"

PEREZ: "The summer of 2020."
PORTER: "The summer of 2020. So June of 2020. And what happened after he took over? Did the rate of on-time mail delivery go up or down?"

PEREZ: "Went down."
PORTER: "And, um, I'm a professor and I used to grade—do a lot of grading, and 92% is considered widely like an A-; 80 is considered hanging on to the lowest possible B; 60% is at best a D-. The Postal Service delivers 48% of the world's mail. It is an institution, it is a civic treasure, and we let it get all the way, what you found is, we let it get all the way to that D- level."

Whew. I'm glad she's on our side.

I'm actually being serious when I say this: If Democrats want to win the hearts and minds of voters, they need to bring Porter out more often, to hose away Republicans' frothy bullshit on every major, widely misunderstood issue.

Whether it be marginal tax rates, inflation rates, Republican tax scams, or whatever CRT-like boogeyman the GOP is hoping to elevate this week, Porter cuts through the noise better than just about anyone else.

Of course, if you didn't know any better, you'd think DeJoy was deliberately trying to destroy the Postal Service. Even if you didknow better, you'd probably think that. And it makes total sense: Republicans have been hammering away at the Postal Service for years. Bringing in a hammerhead like DeJoy to hasten its death—or its irrevocable transformation—is pretty on-brand.

DeJoy's brilliant plan for the USPS is to slow down service and increase prices. In other words, he appears to be launching the service into an ineluctable death spiral. And I can't speak to DeJoy's motivations, but that would definitely benefit private competitors like UPS and FedEx.

Of course, Congress basically shivved the USPS in 2006 by forcing the agency to fund its employees' retirement and health benefits 50 years into the future. And while Donald Trump famously feuded with the Postal Service, Republicans have had their knives out for the beloved institution for a long time.

As The Washington Post's Paul Waldman noted in an August 2020 column, the reason for this is likely that the USPS represents everything Republicans hate, and getting rid of it serves a goal they all tend to share.

If you were a highly ideological conservative, the Postal Service would be a problem. It serves every American, no matter how far-flung, with a low-cost, reliable service — and provides secure employment with good wages and benefits for a blue-collar, unionized workforce, many of them Black or members of other minority groups. Americans love it, which almost inevitably makes them feel warmer toward the government in general. Why, it's positively socialistic!
So there's a vision underlying these changes. It's of a Postal Service that no longer treats all Americans equally, but charges some more than others. It charges everyone more than it does now for some services, which would be a gift to its competitors such as UPS and FedEx. It values "efficiency" over getting the mail out to every address every day. It's less reliable, less certain, and eventually, less highly regarded.

Okay, sure. Well, if liberals want the Postal Service to get more Republicans' support, maybe they should green-light a $1.7 trillion delivery van that doesn't work.

The irony is that, if the Postal Service went away and private businesses were forced to fill in the gap, rural areas—the very places that boost Republicans the most—would get hit the hardest. Yeah, you could still mail a letter to an Alaskan backwater, but they'd likely charge you way more than the USPS does now (i.e., the same amount they charge for sending a letter across town).

So, naturally, this exciting (for the GOP) murder of an institution—one that has long been a path to stability and upward mobility for communities of color, as my colleague Denise Oliver Velez wrote in 2020—has to be done behind closed doors, but Porter, et al., aren't allowing Republicans to do that. If they're going to kill the Postal Service, they're going to have to do it in the harsh light of day. Then all those rural Trump voters will finally be able to see the consequences of their foolish decisions.

Ha ha! Like Trump voters will ever change their tune. Sometimes I crack myself up.

Some of us will see those consequences. I just hope enough of us wake up in time to save a government agency that few people outside of libertarian think tanks really want to see destroyed.

A disturbing number of Republicans actually think Trump will likely be 'reinstated' soon: poll

I'll never understand why anyone listens to Donald Trump on any subject. He wanted to nuke hurricanes. He wanted to put alligator-filled moats along the southern border. He thinks windmills cause cancer, asbestos is swell, and exercise is bad for you. He seriously suggested pumping our bodies full of UV light and disinfectant. He thinks we have planes that are literally invisible, for God's sake!

Nevertheless, millions of Trump fans have bent their brains into pretzels trying to make his doofus proclamations sound presidential—or even marginally nonsimian (see also: hydroxychloroquine).

We've pretty well established that Trump's brain is, at best, masticated circus peanut and, at worst, Lucifer's molten boom-booms, and yet when he dry-heaves utter batshit nonsense, plenty of his fans seem all too ready to lick it up like feral purse poodles.

Case in point: Fully 29% of Republicans think Donald Trump is returning before the year is out—possibly riding in on a cloud or a flaming chariot or (more likely) a golf cart with a cupholder and custom-installed deep fryer.

A new Politico/Morning Consult poll asked survey respondents this straightforward question: "How likely do you think it is that former President Donald Trump will be reinstated as U.S. President this year, if at all?" The question was no doubt included in the poll because Trump himself has been telling insiders that he thinks he'll be back in office by August. (Narrator: He won't.)

The results? (You still have time to bail if you've had your yearly quota of frothing insanity. You're still here? Okay, gird your loins.)

Among Republicans surveyed, 17% think it's "very likely" that Trump will return to the White House this year, 12% think it's "somewhat likely," and 10% don't know or have no opinion. Taken together, this shows that two-fifths of Republicans have not yet accepted that Joe Biden won the presidency.

Of course, that wasn't the only eye-opening result. Asked whether things are going in the right direction in the U.S. or on the wrong track, only 15% of Republicans thought things were going in a positive direction, while 85% said we're veering off course. Guess 85% of Republicans prefer raging pandemics and collapsing economies to Democratic presidents.

Is this what it's like to lick hallucinogenic toads for breakfast in lieu of frosted Pop-Tarts? At some point, do you just surrender to the unreality of your environment?

Over at Civiqs, even more Republicans report they're worried; a stunning 93% of card-carrying GOPers think we're all gonna die.

If you enjoy watching Donald Trump eat the Republican Party from within, like a genetically modified tropical eyeball worm, you'll be happy to know that the Politico/Morning Consult poll found that 80% of Republicans want to stick around so they can see him play either a major (59%) or a minor role (21%) in the party going forward. If you'd prefer he stay in Florida chucking oyster shells at flamingos from his balcony, you'll likely be disappointed by the 13% of Republicans who want him to slink away.

There's also some good news, of course. President Biden's approval rating is at 53% among all registered voters, with 28% of respondents "strongly" approving of the job he's doing, 25% "somewhat" approving, 43% disapproving, and the rest offering no opinion.

Meanwhile, 66% of registered voters want Congress to pass an infrastructure bill—so maybe we should get that done, huh?

There's still some sanity left in the world, so long as you look in the right place. And that right place is clearly nowhere in the vicinity of the right wing. I invite Republicans to hurry on back to planet Earth. The water's fine. At least it is for now—unfortunately, only 12% of Republicans consider passing a bill to address climate change a "top priority."

Go figure.

My Pillow guy Mike Lindell's new 'free speech' website turns out to be a hilarious disaster

I can't stop watching the MyPillow Guy, Mike Lindell, and his "Frank-a-thon" to launch his stupid new Arby's dumpster of a website. The guy has been jabbering for the better part of two days. This morning, I tuned in to see him interviewing someone, but I never got the dude's name because Lindell wouldn't let him get a word in. Lindell won't stop talking. It's a case of logorrhea the likes of which I've never seen before. I'll give him the benefit of the doubt and assume he's on 100 CCs of Jesus and not overstuffed Hefty bags full of cocaine cut with meth. But, damn, he's a dynamo of disinformation.

While I was watching, Lindell claimed he'd gotten confirmation from Jimmy Kimmel Live! that he will be a guest on the show. Kimmel, who appears to be even more obsessed with Albino Grimace than I am, has previously joked that he'd interview Lindell under two conditions:

"Number one, he has to actually come into our studio—I need to see him in person. I want to smell the knackwurst in his mustache. And number two, I would like to conduct our interview in a bed, surrounded by pillows. Just me and Mike snuggled up side by side in a California king surrounded by sacks of goose feathers."

Judging by Mike's reaction, he almost certainly thinks he's about to break this whole election fraud thing wide open on late-night TV while nuzzling a guy who can't stop making fun of him. Speaking of Lindell's gullibility, the guy who called in to Lindell's show on Monday pretending to be Donald Trump spoke with the Daily Beast, and revealed his diabolical methods.

Actually, he was responsible for multiple prank calls to Lindell's show.

The prankster, Ron Blackman, is apparently an old hand at this. He has a podcast called The Macron Show, and he typically uses "social engineering and caller-ID spoofing" in order to soften up a target and make them more susceptible to skullduggery.

According to Blackman, Frank Speech and Lindell were easy marks.

Blackman prepared for pranking the MyPillow boss for weeks, he said, and the initial plan was to register a bunch of new user names on Frank Speech and use them to mock the pro-Trump pillow salesman during his 48-hour kickoff event, titled "Frank-a-thon." Despite the hotly anticipated launch, the site struggled right off the bat on Monday, with many users unable to log on and set up their profiles.
Not only was Lindell easy to dupe, Blackman said, but the prank calls were made especially easier thanks to the MyPillow CEO's co-host Brannon Howse, a fellow election conspiracist and right-wing talker.
"That dude is dumber than a bag of rocks," Blackman said of Howse. "He's the reason I got to Lindell so easily yesterday."

Blackman says he got Howse's personal cellphone number off his public Facebook page, which made it kind of easy to call in to the show. Blackman first got on-air by pretending to be a Wall Street Journal reporter. "I just told her [the assistant] to give me Mike's number, and she did it without thinking," Blackman told the Daily Beast. "And it proves 100% that he didn't even have a plan for his big live stream. He was totally winging it. Sitting there with his iPhone on his desk praying that someone good would call in to support him."

As for the Trump call, Blackman says he spoofed a number from Mar-a-Lago. "I knew for certain that I'd have about one second to say what I wanted before Lindell panicked and hung up. I used a soundboard of Donald Trump saying 'Hello everyone' to reel him in and then I yelled out my website name, so that at least everyone hearing it would know where to find me, so that we got to hijack all his effort and time and use it to promote a prank call show instead of his website."

And here's Blackman's handiwork:

Kimmel also had some (more) fun at Lindell and Frank's expense Tuesday night.

Meanwhile—and pardon me if this is burying the lede—nothing on appears to work at the time of this writing, other than the live feed from the baby monitor we're all using to make sure Lindell doesn't choke to death on a Lego.

Here's what the page looked like as of 10:15 AM PT, on April 21:


Considering that Lindell had planned to launch his site on Monday to everyone and to VIPs last Thursday, that can only be seen as unfortunate. (For Lindell, that is. For democracy and comedy, it's a boon.)

Gee, it's almost as if this dude has no relevant experience whatsoever in television production or social media platform launches.

People who are dumb enough to believe Lindell but not quite dumb enough to believe that he meant to launch his big free speech site this way are, you know, complaining.

And for a while earlier Wednesday, the site was completely offline.

Because that's what you want to show people when you launch a new product that you've been hyping for weeks: a page claiming the site is undergoing "scheduled maintenance."

There's always, courtesy of the folks over at The Good Liars.

Is it too much of a stretch to say I'm now more addicted to Mike Lindell than Mike Lindell was previously addicted to crack? Maybe not, but I should probably limit my exposure. I'm beginning to see that majestic gleaming mustache dancing in the wind whenever I close my eyes.

This GOP senator just tried to take credit for the COVID relief bill — after voting against it

Yeah, this was easy enough to predict.

Part of voting against a COVID relief measure that polls better than dolphins riding glitter-farting unicorns on enchanted rainbow highways to free breadsticks and blowhole-waxing night at Olive Garden is that you're morally obligated to sit back and take your lumps.

But as we well know, Republicans have no morals. They have talking points—and an unsettling number of constituents with the memories of below-average fruit flies.

So you get sly, winky-wink shit like this, from Mississippi Sen. Roger Wicker:

For the nontweeters: "Independent restaurant operators have won $28.6 billion worth of targeted relief. This funding will ensure small businesses can survive the pandemic by helping to adapt their operations and keep their employees on the payroll."

Note that the most important part of his tweet—"no thanks to me, of course"—somehow got cut off. He'll be talking to the Twitter help desk about that soon, I'm sure.


This is like Jeffrey Dahmer showing up at a church potluck and trying to take credit for the vegan hummus.

No! No, Senator! Bad! We know for a fact you brought the O'Doul's and circus peanuts. And whatever this pâté is. You're not fooling anyone, dude.

I assume this is just an opening salvo. As more and more Americans are helped out of a bind by President Biden's signature relief bill, and as the economy starts to roar back thanks to his brawny COVID-mitigation and relief efforts, you're likely to see a lot more of this.

We can't let it happen.

This is a 100% Democratic relief bill—meaning exactly zero Republicans voted for it.

We can never forget that, and—more importantly—we can never let them forget it.

'The lack of self-awareness is stunning': Fox wonders complains about transparency over Biden's injured foot

As Donald Trump's fusillade of fucknuttery fades into history, the tan-suiting of Joe Biden can now begin!

You see, "people" are asking questions about Biden's visit to the doctor yesterday — a visit his team acknowledged the same day his injury was confirmed.

"The Biden team is facing questions about why reporters weren't even told right away what happened and why they couldn't see Biden on the way to the doctor."

Uh huh …

Days before Thanksgiving last year, President Donald Trump made an unannounced and previously unscheduled trip to Walter Reed medical center. The White House said the trip was for a "quick exam and labs." We still don't know why he actually went -- or what the outcome of his visit was.

On Sunday, three days after Thanksgiving this year, President-elect Joe Biden slipped and hurt his foot while playing with his dog, Major. We were quickly told -- via the traveling press pool -- that Biden was going to see his orthopedist out of an abundance of caution. Within two hours, there was a statement from Dr. Kevin O'Connor noting that Biden's foot had been X-rayed and it appeared as though he had a sprain. A CT scan was going to be conducted just to confirm the diagnosis, however.

Then, 90 minutes after that, came this, again from O'Connor: "Initial x-rays did not show any obvious fracture, but his clinical exam warranted more detailed imaging. Follow-up CT scan confirmed hairline (small) fractures of President-elect Biden's lateral and intermediate cuneiform bones, which are in the mid-foot. It is anticipated that he will likely require a walking boot for several weeks."

By the way, did Trump ever finish the second half of his physical?

And did he know he had the coronavirus during that first debate?

And what was with the shuffling walk down that ramp?

And why does he keep bragging about passing a dementia test?

And why the fuck was he taking a dementia test?

And why does he look on his best days like a caring quilt made of diseased antelope scrotums?

I think we all deserve answers, don't you?

Eric Trump told Minnesotans to get out and vote. Today — a week after the election

What do you do when you're a crime family and all your kids are Fredos? You fail. A lot.

Case in point: Eric Trump

Of course, we all know Eric has the cognitive ability of a below-average glue-huffing Sea-Monkey, but that doesn't mean it still isn't hilarious when he screws up.

This morning, Eric tweeted — and then quickly deleted — this:


Well, Minnesota DID get out and vote ... last week ... and they opted to defenestrate his father's ocher arsehole.

Naturally, Twitter was only too happy to point out Eric's gaudy gormlessness.

Donald Trump has often bragged (falsely, of course) about hiring only the best people. At the same time, he apparently sires the worst. In fact, he's like a gravity well of incompetence, as anyone who moves beyond the event horizon of his inner circle has to be super-dumbfuckish, or a relative, or both to survive for very long.

It's the Trump way. And it won't change. Luckily, they have to go back to fucking up their business now. And I certainly won't object to that.

Pete Buttigieg hits back at Amy Coney Barrett's not-so-subtle homophobic slur

We all pretty much know who Amy Coney Barrett is.

I see such super-Catholics on my social media feeds pretty regularly because, well, I went to Catholic grade school and high school, and a lot of my old classmates either haven't figured out that I'm a filthy secular humanist or, to their credit, don't care.

And by "super-Catholics" I don't mean anyone who's more Catholic than me — because that would include just about everyone. I mean people who care about blastulas and zygotes more than they care about kids in cages. Put a couple frozen embryos in an Igloo cooler and stash it in a holding cell at the border and maybe some of these folks would finally wake up to this administration's inhumanity.

So, needless to say, Barrett isn't exactly forward-thinking when it comes to LGBTQ issues. Unless the baseline we're talking about is sometime in the early to mid-11th century.

BARRETT: "I have never discriminated on the basis of sexual preference and would not ever discriminate on the basis of sexual preference."

There's a lot wrong with that statement. First of all, it's an orientation, not a preference. For instance, my orientation is heterosexual. Watching Glee reruns while stoned out of my mind is my choice. Secondly, I'm pretty certain she's not a friend of the LGBTQ community, so this is all just window dressing anyway. And bad window dressing at that.

Well, erstwhile presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg noticed Barrett's verbal sleight-of-hand and was having none of it:

That's my preference, too, Mayor Buttigieg.

Unfortunately, Mitch McConnell's orientation is reptilian, so don't hold your breath.

Are you outraged? Well, then vote. And donate. And do everything else you have to do to deliver us a Biden presidency and a Democratic Senate.

Make it so.

Conservative columnist shames GOP senators: 'It’s too late to scurry away from the sinking Trump ship'

Jennifer Rubin is a longtime NeverTrumper member of the marginally sane community. She's one of The Washington Post's conservative writers, but when she decided to side with common sense over Trumpite servility, she became an apostate in the eyes of many of her fellow travelers.

Importantly, she pushed away from the Trumpian hog trough ages ago, whereas many conservatives-cum-cultists are now so sated and logy from their unholy bacchanal they should be easier to pick off than fat, flightless pigeons when the voters finally have their say.

And now that Trump has dropped a few more notches on the "acting presidential" scale — from "barely human" to "raw, quavering baboon rectum" — she's calling bullshit on all the inside-the-Beltwayers who are suddenly trying to flee from the ocher abomination like Quint from the shark on the deck of the Orca.

The Washington Post:

The big problem is that Senate Republicans wrapped themselves so tightly around Trump — defending his plainly impeachable conduct in the Senate trial, excusing his covid-denialism, ignoring his racist language and incitement to violence and declining to stop his financial self-dealing — that it's too late to scurry away from the sinking Trump ship. When the GOP eschewed a convention platform this summer in favor of heaping praise on Trump, Republicans made clear that they have no position other than Trump idolatry. Even now, they seem not to have learned anything.

Now that Trump's worst enablers suddenly find themselves in a hellish Hieronymus Bosch painting — their torsos (and political prospects) being gnawed on by giant, grotesque Trump heads for all eternity — there's really no escape. The time to take a principled stance is long past. They'll be treading water in Trump scat until all that bad karma is burned off. Could take a while.

And while Rubin notes that Democrats — fueled by outsized enthusiasm — are outraising their counterparts up and down the ballot, the real problem for Republicans is their generally pusillanimous reaction to Trump's serial outrages:

The crazier Trump seems in the last stretch (pleading for indictments of his political opponents, recklessly spreading covid-19, on-again-off-again stimulus negotiations), the more pathetic the Republicans who enabled him look. This is the guy you said had it all figured out? This was the guy you defended as a victim of liberal elites? These Republicans long ago threw away independent judgment, character, responsiveness to the voters back home and honesty, for fear of provoking Trump's ire or the condemnation of the right-wing media and the MAGA crowd. It turns out winning is awfully hard, even in red states, when your Trump sycophancy horrifies women, college-educated voters, non-White voters, young voters and seniors. Money is the least of Republicans' troubles.

In other words, they should have mutinied as soon as Lt. Cmdr. Queeg flipped out over the strawberries. But they hung on for dear life. And now they're basically sunk.

But it's not over yet! Donate to your fave Senate candidate — and be sure to give Joe some love (i.e., cash), if you can swing it.

Bizarre campaign ad leads many to ask: 'What is up with Donald Trump Jr. in this video?'

Usually I provide a transcript with these videos, no matter how fucknutted the fucknuttery. But this is one you just have to watch because, seriously, I can't begin to fathom what's going on with Don Jr. in this clip.

Yeah, that's just what we need. A stupefied weirdo summoning a shambolic army of conspiracy-loving "poll watchers."

This is a guy who's accused Joe Biden of using drugs to get through speeches and debates. This guy. The guy who looks like he's auditioning for an after-school special about the life-altering effects of bath salts abuse.

And why is he reading it like it's a hostage video or a quotidian announcement from the Borg Queen?

Seriously, it looks like they shot this three seconds after sandblasting the crusty night gunk out of his face.

I think one of those gyros places on State Street in Madison still has a photo of me taped to their cash register looking like this — with a warning not to serve me.

I've never tried coke, and I probably never will, but if I do wake up some morning with a hankerin', I know now that my first call will be to the Republican National Committee.

Now, I'm not saying Don Jr. is stoned in this video, because accusing someone of taking drugs when you have no proof is really irresponsible (right, Don Jr.?), but he sure doesn't look good. Maybe it's COVID.

I don't know — something is going on.

Many people are saying that.

Many, many people.

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Marie Yovanovitch gets standing ovation at awards presentation

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9 of the last 10 US recessions began with a GOP President. Why would anyone trust a Republican with the economy again?

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy is not a fan of history, apparently. At least not when history belies the myths Republicans stick in their constituents’ mouths like lightly drugged binkies whenever they want to pretend our country’s economy wasn’t saved by a black man who actually understands trivial matters like economics, foreign policy, diplomacy, and not dribbling a painter’s palette worth of McNugget sauces down the front of one’s torso.

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Trump's Super Bowl ad comes in dead last in audience ranking — but everyone loved Bill Murray

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