Law professors torch Trump legal memo

So much of this is not normal, but if this is the reality we must amplify those fighting to defend the institutions that make America a thing.

The Office of the President is not a get-out-of-jail free card for lawless behavior,” the professors wrote in their letter, obtained by POLITICO. “Indeed, our country’s Founders made it clear in the Declaration of Independence that they did not believe that even a king had such powers; they specifically cited King George’s obstruction of justice as among the ‘injuries and usurpations’ that justified independence. Our Founders would not have created — and did not create — a Constitution that would permit the President to use his powers to violate the laws for corrupt and self-interested reasons.”

https://politi.co/2sFQWol

Tools of Trump’s Fixer: Payouts, Intimidation and the Tabloids – The New York Times

This article does a good job of explaining what Michael Cohen does for Donald Trump. What the article does not do is explain how dangerous this is.  This is right out of the organized crime playbook, but instead he is the president.  That is having a lawyer who is not doing any legal work, but instead just uses his degree as a way to try and keep some information privileged.  The courts have not been kind to this in the past, but Michael Cohen and Donald Trump are still living in 1970s New York.  

Also it’s really something that we have people in 2018 that look at Roy Cohn as some kind of heroic figure.  That said Nathan Lane will be playing him on Broadway starting in late March in “Angels in America: Millennium Approaches” and I am 100% interested in seeing it! 

Live Look at the Oval Office

The media told us General John Kelly was going to be the new grown up in the White House. He was the new moderating voice.  Well this is who is the Chief of Staff is, and I wonder how some like Maggie Haberman would have covered the closing scene of “A Few Good Men” if it was not fiction and she was assigned to cover?

via GIPHY

How to Handle All That News

So much news, so many sources, so much to read, so where does one start? If you are a news junkie as I am this is the ultimate question of our times (tad exaggeration).
My system for trying to keep up is not complicated, but it works for me and something similar might work for you. First I have 3 “old media” sources that I subscribe to so I read those as you would have in 1950 at the kitchen table. Those would be The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal. These three are also the only news apps that I allow to send me notifications on my phone, breaking news only of course!

The next bit is how I take in the rest. It pretty much works like this. I see a link in a number of places and save it to Pocket. There are a few services that allow you to save items to read later, but Pocket works everywhere and has the best tools. Then a few times a day I go into Pocket on my phone or PC and read away.

I have two primary ways to find stuff I want to send to Pocket. That would be my RSS app (RSS explainer) and Twitter. Since the death of Google Reader I have used Feedly as my RSS service. I do however use third party apps to use Feedly though they provide more than adequate first party apps. On the MAC and iOS I use Reeder, and on Windows I like Nextgen Reader. Both apps do a great job of syncing with the Feedly service and most importantly make it easy to save to Pocket. For Android I still have not found anything better than Feedly for Android.

Those that know me understand I like and use Twitter a lot. While the social stuff is fun, I have found it be a useful place to see what news is breaking in the now. With the right Twitter app you can save anything that looks interesting with one quick click. On the Mac and iOS I use Tweetbot, on Android I like Talon, and on Windows I like Tweetium.

While a setup like this can take time to curate it is quick and easy to use. During the day or when I am busy I just quickly scan my Twitter and RSS feeds. If I see a headline or lede that draws my attention, I just click save to Pocket. Then when I have a few minutes I open Pocket and read!

Like anything the news is only as good as the sources you choose to follow and read. Don’t just read the sites and authors who you know you will agree with. Push your boundaries, remember there is a world outside of the borders you live within, and become an informed citizen.


Apps and services mentioned above:

The Time for the Gun Debate Was Yesterday

What to Bring to the Gun Fight | Crooked Media

Republicans have defined the terms of the debate on guns and instead of trying to change those terms, we have resigned ourselves to playing on their turf. The Democratic approach to guns is one of the last vestiges of the mushy strategic applesauce that dominated 1990s DLC-style centrism—the only way to beat Republicans is to try to sound more like them. It is a defensive posture borne of a defeatist mindset that is more a product of Democratic psychology than of political reality. Democrats speak softly and carry a small stick to the gun fight because they have convinced themselves that Republicans have the law, politics, and a presumption of victory on their side. The truth is less daunting, but unless Democrats come around to that truth, the presumption of Republican victory will become a self-fulfilling prophecy.


Glad to see a group of writers actually writing. This is an important read.

Sports is Not Enough

The First Vegas Hockey Game Was Proof That Sports Can’t Heal Tragedy – VICE Sports

After the largest mass shooting in American history, all the horror of the real world was displayed on the ice Tuesday night. First responders, many reluctantly accepting cheers from the crowd as they walked onto the ice, were there to receive thanks from the fans. But they were also a reminder of how everything can and will go bad in a moment’s notice.

The problem is that something needs to actually come of their presence. What needs to follow is more than just a hockey game. We need to see this parade of heroes, take the next step and say to ourselves, “It would be great if these men and women didn’t have to be heroes as often as they do. Let’s do something about it.”


Dave is exactly right. The Vegas Knights did everything right last night, but this should not be on them nor any other group of athletes. This is on all of us to demand more be done.

Your Next Supreme Court Justice

Reported Gorsuch Statements Show Disqualifying Disregard for Women’s Workplace Rights – NWLC

Author: Emily Martin

“Judge Gorsuch outlined how law firms, and companies in general, had to ask female interviewees about pregnancy plans in order to protect the company. At least one student countered that an employer could not ask questions about an interviewee’s pregnancy plans. However, Judge Gorsuch informed the class that was wrong. Instead Judge Gorsuch told the class that not only could a future employer ask female interviewees about their pregnancy and family plans, companies must ask females about their family and pregnancy plans to protect the company.”


This from the guy who apparently is too qualified to try and stop. While the Democrats can’t stop this in the end they should force the GOP to get rid of the filibuster. The idea they should wait for the next one is wrong as the GOP will blow it up anyway.

Hearings start today so watch this space.