Bill Barr As ‘Q’

Will the real “Q” stand up.
Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls

The only reason why I rant against MAGA asshats on this blog these days is I get the sense from my Web traffic that a small portion of my microscopic audience comes from MAGA people spooging their pants at my dire worst case scenario pontification. There’s not much I can do but just tell them to fuck off and eat shit. You’re such a partisan that you actually want Trump to put people like me in an ICE Camp and murder me then, well, what more can I say but fuck of you piece of shit.

One thing I’ve seen up-close and personal by using Periscope over the years is there are some pretty fucking insane MAGA people. The vast majority of Periscope users seem to be MAGA dead-enders who should they see Trump murder me in cold blood would lulz it and say “at least they don’t have an Obama phone.” After the “poor optics” of Mueller’s testimony to Congress, these asshats gloated over Trump’s victory. That Trump would use this political victory to turn around and do the exact same thing within 24 hours apparently was lost on them.

The thing about many MAGA shitheads is they confuse a lack of political will with a lack of crimes on Trump’s part. So, what I fear will happen is at some point between now and Thanksgiving, a Barr Report will be released which somehow manages to implicate people like John Brennan in some sort of far-reaching conspiracy involving Ukraine, the Democrats and Crowdfire (or whatever it’s called.) These MAGA loyalists will cackle as Maggie Haberman or Chris Wallace say politically impeachment is dead in the water and, by the way, John Brennan, call your lawyer.

Given how dumb the conspiracy that Trump apparently believes actually is, what specifically the Barr Report will say is a struggle for me to imagine. But he’s going full speed ahead with it. The point is to so muddle the conversation about impeachment that we’re all debating the merits — or lack thereof — of the Barr Report and not all the very public criming Trump has done. So, really, Barr probably doesn’t have to do all that much. Any conversation that House Republicans are having about the bullshit findings of the Barr Report is a conversation they’re not having about Trump being criminally incompetent.

Or, more broadly, I think the issue for Twitter liberals is the Republican Party is SUCH a bad faith actor on an existential level that they are going to fight dirty. They are going to lie. They are going to cheat. They are going to get so wrapped up in their overwrought, overheated messaging of the MAGA base that they completely and totally lose sight that some idiot, somewhere will take their messaging seriously AND literally and someone who opposes House Trump is going to get hurt. I really, really, really, hope I’m wrong on this one. I want to be House Trump on strictly a political level.

I honestly don’t know what’s going to happen at this point. There’s no ready endgame for impeachment. It could still go either way. Things have stabilized a little bit in the last few days, enough for me there may be some pretty big “HOLY SHIT” moments between now and the end of the year. What they might be, I have no idea.

But I am beginning to think Trump might not be as thrilled about being impeached by the House as Maggie Haberman would have me to believe in her soothing tweets she writes on this matter. I would go so far as to suggest that if, despite the Barr Report, Trump is still in danger of even being impeached, some pretty dark shit is going to happen because Republicans will suddenly realize what has always happened in the past is not going to happen this time.

Trump is going to, in fact, face some political consequences for being a moronic tyrant.

I just don’t know. I just don’t know how things are going to work out. Trump is apparently going to release another “transcript” on Tuesday (tomorrow) and that could be a series of FUD mindfucking on the part of House Trump to throw political roadblocks in the way of impeachment.

If Barr does fancy himself Q, then there will be two potential reactions. Either his bullshit works — again — or it doesn’t. If it doesn’t, then buckle up. House Trump is going to flip the fuck out in some pretty astonishing ways.

Tough Love For Twitter Liberals About The Current State Of The Impeachment Process

Darkness falls.
Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls

If you’re MAGA reading this from the Deep South and you think my worst case scenario is your best case scenario — please eat shit. Fuck off, you piece of shit MAGA traitor.

Trump’s going to be acquitted. In fact, to be brutally honest, given that Trump does NOT want to be impeached, there’s a pretty good chance he won’t even be formally impeached.

Here’s why.

Bill Barr is lurking around, waiting to pounce. He’s likely to finally release his “anti-Mueller Report” just around Thanksgiving. As of right now, formal impeachment is set for sometime around Christmas. So, if past is preface, Barr plays the part of Q. He drops a big turd in the impeachment punch bowl. The press spends a week debating the merits of his totally bullshit report. Everyone begins to fear that John Brennan is going to be indicted. We’re so busy thinking about this totally surreal and nonsensical report — even if it appears to be backed up by “facts” — that the momentum for even impeachment fades and Trump escapes.

I say this quite sincerely because Trump is going to turn into a very moronic, very deranged Sun King at this point. He’s going to become so brazen after escaping justice AGAIN that it will be pretty obvious by no later than, say, February that there will NOT be a free-and-fair election in 2020. And pretty much everyone is going to stand around and watch it happen, too. Trump may “end” birthright citizenship via Executive Order. He may make rumblings about the absolute need for a Constitutional Convention to “pass a balanced budget amendment.”

The first part of his second term will be calling a snap Constitutional Convention and codifying American Carnage. Don Jr. will be America’s doofus Crown Prince. We’re going to be little more than Putin’s bitch. Tyranny will finally descend upon across America. Liberal-progressives in Hollywood will bounce from the country altogether and many in New York City and Silicon Valley may do the same. The ICE Camps will be weaponized and people like me will be “vanished.” We’ll simply not be around anymore. The ICE Camps will grow ever larger with not just scary brown people, but people like me.

I would note, however, in passing, that I can’t predict the future. The MAGA Right is growing extremely hysterical in its overheated, overwrought rhetoric. Things have stabilized enough for the time being that my initial fears of Trump finally losing his mind completely or there being significant anti-impeachment violence on the part of shithead MAGA people are beginning to subside.

So, in essence, I think by no later than Thanksgiving, the Mueller Playbook will kick in and a lot of liberal-progressives will scream at the top of their lungs that Trump was supposed to be impeached….and nothing actually happened. I used to think the impeachment train had left the station, but I’m beginning to doubt even that.

This week may be a big test of my predicting abilities. If we can make it through this week without the air completely draining from the impeachment balloon, then we’re in the clear…until next week. The bullshit Barr Report looms large in all of this. This week is also the first week where I’m growing a little bit more concerned about anti-impeachment violence on the part of MAGA. I only say this because their daily 2 minutes of hate is now completely focused on outing the Whistleblower and no good can come of that.

Who knows.

Staring Into The Void — Contemplating A Trump Whistleblower Newscycle From Hell

Uh oh.
Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls

We have to begin this gut wrenching discussion with the obvious — in real terms, if what I fear might happens, happens, it will be one of the biggest political fuck ups on the part of an American party since the end of the Civil War. There simply is no way to weasel your way out of it — if there’s any type of anti-impeachment violence, Republicans — and Trump — are ultimately going to be blamed.

But, let’s move forward.

The issue right now is I just can’t speculate what the anti-impeachment violence will be. It could be anything from harm of some sort befalling the Whistleblower to a car bomb exploding somewhere like Times Square. But let’s go with something simple — the Whistleblower’s identity becomes so well know within the batshit insane MAGA echo chamber that someone decides to hurt him.

And, for the sake of argument, let’s say this happens sooner rather than later so Trump still has his marbles. But maybe it happens late enough that while there isn’t a direct link between Trump’s Twitter ranting and what happens, it’s pretty clear he established the conditions for it to happen. So things are still a bit nebulous.

The first thing would be the entire nation would come to a screeching halt for about 24 hours. For just around 24 hours, the nation would for once be on the same page: HOLY SHIT.

But this wouldn’t last very long. Once we began to process what happened, the two sides would be at each other’s throats again. MAGA Republicans would trade their hysterical rhetoric over the Whistleblower for hysterical rhetoric about how this unprecedented example of political violence is absolute proof that we “have to let the people decide” in 2020 instead continuing with the impeachment process.

In reality, this would be more about simply punting the debate over the criminal incompetence of Trump back into the political sphere and out of the “OH MY GOD, TRUMP GOT SOMEONE MURDERED” sphere. The usual suspects would pop out to message the base or carry water for House Trump. Hugh Hewitt would say Democrats are to blame because they should not have attempted to impeach Trump in the first place. House Republicans would scream at the top of their lungs that Rep. Adam Schiff should be charged as an accessory to murder. The New York Times‘ Maggie Haberman would coo that Trump was a political genius for getting someone murdered.

Now, remember, this is just the first 24 hours. The whole issue of a funeral would have to be addressed. Then there would likely be an epic battle over who would speak at the funeral and why. Given my personal belief that the populist rage of Twitter would burst into a supernova when the shock wore off and people realized what Trump’s hysterical and bombastic rhetoric had done.

Remember, the reason why Trump is so very, very stupid on a political level is right now the true backbone of his support is simple apathy. The vast majority of the populace is not on Twitter and is too busy raising their kids and paying their mortgage to care, in real terms, what Trump may or may not have done. The moment they a shocked out of their stupor by such un-American political violence, all bets are off.

I mean, the only thing I can think of that would possible force the hand of the living ex presidents would be something like anti-impeachment violence. Say what you will about Bill Clinton’s personal life, but I suspect he would be able to give a barn burner of a eulogy in such a situation.

So, the moment the funeral was over, Trump — who is completely devoid of human empathy — would go back to his old bullshit games. But I think his political fate would be sealed. While MAGA House Republicans would continue to caterwaul, in the end, Trump would be convicted by the Senate.

I still do not think anything like this is going to happen. It’s just so out of the American experience for there to be political violence. And, really, while I do think it’s inevitable that the Whistleblower will be “kavanaughed” by Republicans with great gusto as impeachment proceedings progress, I still am not prepared to accept in real terms that anyone on their side will go beyond that.

We’ll see, I guess.

What I Believe John Bolton Is Up To

American Carnage, Brought To You By John Bolton
Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls

So what exactly is the game John Bolton is playing with Congress right now? My current theory has several parts to it.

He’s Slow Walking
He simply wants to delay his testimony until it’s way too little, too late. He doesn’t really want to testify if it has any political importance. He wants to dangle the possibility of testifying in front of House Democrats with the hope that they will delay the articles of impeachment so long that the whole thing gets pushed into 2020 and, well, “let the people decide.” Lulz!

He Has A Book To Sell
He might want to gin up his profile during the process of coyly suggesting he has the goods on House Trump to such an extent that he can release his book late enough in the 2020 presidential campaign as to get the biggest headlines possible. Remember — an acquitted Trump is going to be a tyrant. He will be an criminally incompetent tyrant, but he’ll be a tyrant nonetheless. So, in real terms, it’s a win-win for Bolton. He gets to make a big splash with his book and Trump cheats to re-election and maybe even forgives Bolton in his second term. Maybe Secretary of State? Lulz!

He Wants To Give More Cover For Republican Senators
If Bolton plays his cards right, the media narrative will be like that island where we’ll find gold once the last tree dies of natural causes. The general consensus will be on the part of Republican Senators that Bolton is the key to “knowing the truth” and on a political level they have a pass to acquit Trump because of this. Lulz!

So, again, we’re fucked. We’re totally, completely fucked. Barring something extra-political like Trump going nuts or MAGA overplaying its hand with anti-impeachment violence, Trump’s American Carnage vision will be a reality soon enough.

Republicans Are Criminal Fascist Bad Faith Political Actors — They Live In A Post-Fact Environment

Our future sucks.
Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls

One thing I see a lot among Twitter liberals is the idea that there is some logical argument that would trap Republicans into — on a political level — agreeing to remove Trump from office at some point in the future. Alas, this is not at all the case.

Republicans are such bad-faith political actors at this point that Trump is going to get acquitted quite easily no matter what any other political considerations may indicate. Not only is Trump going to be “unbound” the moment the Senate acquits him, even under the best of scenarios the moment a Democrat is sworn in as president he or she is going to be impeached in just over two years.

Let’s unpack this.

So, the first issue is Trump is going to go full tyrant the moment he’s acquitted. There will be no free-and-fair election in 2020. He will do everything in his power to cheat in an extremely brazen manner because, lulz, we’re supposed to “let the people decide in 2020.” Those people will be either plutocrats in America or Russians in Moscow. The only thing stopping Trump from immediately ordering ICE to round up people like me and murdering us in Killing Fields in, say, upstate New York, is he’s criminally incompetent.

Should something happen miraculously to allow a Democrat to become president in 2021, the Republicans will plot to impeach that president the moment they likely regain power in the House in 2022. They will be so quick to do it, they will likely have Articles drawn up by the time Election Night is over. The Republican Party is really the MAGA Party now and they will stop at nothing to ruin any Democratic president because, well, by definition they’re not legitimate in their eyes.

As I keep saying there are really only two known unknowns that might throw us a curve ball

Trump’s Reaction To Impeachment
I don’t really want our nation to go through this type of crisis, but if Trump snaps mentally in some sort of explosive manner then that old House Trump may at least be delayed in its founding. This is a real wild card going forward. In real terms, House Trump’s best bet is Trump survives mentally until some point in his second term. Trump’s replacement for Pence — Kris Kobach or Tom Cotton or whatever young, passionate fascist he dregs up from the sewers of hate — will be the one to finally found The Thousand Year Trump. America will be a nation of “blood and soil” not of ideas and, like, I said, the ICE camp system will be weaponized and, well, sucks to be me.

Anti-Impeachment Violence From MAGA
This is another real wild card. It could happen suddenly and take us all off guard in a major way. After about 24 hours of The New York Times’ Maggie Haberman saying this OF COURSE means the impeachment process has to end, the exact opposite thing will happen and that will be that.

I really, really, really don’t want either one of these things to happen, however. I want to defeat Trump on strictly political grounds, come what may.

Debunking MAGA’s Bullshit Impeachment Defenses Of Trump

LeT THe PeOPLe DeCiDE
Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls

So, here are the bullshit defenses of Trump I’ve seen on Twitter of late. All of them are really attempts to message the base. We’ll see how successful they are.

“No Due Process”
This defense muddles the rights someone has in a criminal case with what the Constitution affords a politician in the strictly political process of impeachment. They mix and match pieces of the Constitution to conflate things in the minds of the public. By definition, impeachment is a political process and as such, the whole thing is really basically partisan — especially in this era of extreme political tribalism and identity politics.

“Political Death Penalty”
This defense says that while what Trump did was bad, it wasn’t bad enough for the “political death penalty” of conviction in the Senate. This is complete and total bullshit because of what Trump is credibly accused of doing — not only trying to give himself political cover to pardon Paul Manafort and Mike Flynn, but to get dirt on Joe Biden to use against him in the 2020 campaign. What’s worse, Trump didn’t even want the dirt, he just wanted a public announcement on the part of the Ukrainians that they were looking into Biden. Trump remaining in office through the 2020 election doesn’t actually give me much confidence that there would be free-and-fair elections.

“Partisan Witch Hunt”
This is defense is bullshit because the facts are that Trump did, in fact, do what he’s accused of doing. What’s more Bill Clinton was impeached in large part because of an actual partisan conspiracy on the part of Linda Tripp, Lucianne Goldberg and Matt Drudge and Bill Clinton was impeached because of it, though not convicted. Two things can both be true — a lot of people hate Trump and Trump did, in fact, do something that warrants his impeachment and removal from office.

“Let The People Decide”
This defense goes hand in hand with the “bad but not worth impeachment, much less conviction” defense. This is complete bullshit because Trump’s proven that he loves, loves, loves to meddle in elections and if he’s politically pardoned again, he’s going to grow so brazen and emboldened that there won’t be any stopping his re-election by any means necessary. Which, of course, is pretty much what the person who uses this dumb defense actually really wants.

Republicans Are Bad Faith Political Actors On An Institutional Level

Republicans are bad faith political actors.
Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls

I’m growing more confident in my view that Trump will ultimately be acquitted by the Senate. The “what he did was bad but not THAT bad” line will begin to take traction and the rest will take care of itself. We’ll be lucky to get a 50-50 tie.

Now, there are different reactions to this almost near-inevitability.

MAGA: They will see it as final confirmation that they are above the law. They are finally free of any political constraints. Trump will grow extremely brazen in his authoritarian actions. We won’t have a free-and-fair election in 2020. At some point in Trump’s second term, he begins to demand a Constitutional Convention to pass a balance budget amendment, and it goes rouge. American Carnage is codified in the Constitution, the Thousand Year Trump is founded and sometime about 2023 people like me are “vanished.” I am sent to a ICE camp and shot dead at some point. Luz?

Biden Democrats: They will somehow continue to fool themselves that everything is still normal. They will want to reach across the aisle to get things done. Republicans will laugh in their face. The macro problems in the country that impeachment accelerated will come to a head. In the end, the Biden Democrats will likely suffer the most when ICE camps are weaponized.

The point is, I would rather go down fighting and on a politically honest level than meekly give up and let Trump do what he’s going to do anyway. The only thing to date that has stopped use from becoming a Russia-style “managed democracy” has been that Trump is criminally incompetent. He will remain so, but he’s finally getting to the point that he understands how to abuse power more effectively.

Republicans are bad faith political actors, full stop. They’re little more than old school fascists. They see democracy as nothing more than a means to an end — obtaining and keeping power and obtaining as much money as possible as quickly as possible. They’re willing to say any lie, break any law and ultimately hurt anyone they have to hurt to do this. In hindsight, the Republicans are pretty obvious marks for the Russians — they are so blinded by absolute greed that they don’t even think about how accepting money from Russians is a betrayal of their country. It doesn’t even enter their minds.

As I keep saying, there are two “known unknowns.”

Trump’s mental state
If he finally snaps in a really public manner, then his acquittal in the Senate grows more debatable. I’m beginning to think this is just my own liberal fever dream in the midterm. He may go nuts, but I think he’ll be able to survive until his second term. House Trump will be so brazen by that point that Don Jr. may be the Crown Prince Veep. When Trump finally goes bonkers, Don Jr. becomes Emperor, er…President, and away we go.

Anti-Impeachment Violence
This is another thing I simply don’t know what to expect. We’ve reached enough of a stabilization in the situation that I’m beginning to think — thankfully — that such violence is unlikely. There may be some “false flag” attempts at violence on MAGA’s part, but overall I think we’re reasonably safe on that front.

So, I would say the real issue is to what extent does House Trump alienate progressive-liberals in Hollywood that they begin to leave the country en mass. Silicon Valley is probably much safer on that front. But a lot of very productive people are center-Left, so it’s possible that when ICE starts to shoot us in the back of the head, the people who can leave, will leave.

V-Log: Idle, Incoherent Rambling About #Impeachment & #Writing A #Novel

Some thoughts.

Impeachment Coverage Request: A Dynamic Chart Of The Status Of The Senate’s Sentiment On Impeachment

Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls

I just don’t have the resources to do this myself. But here’s want I want.

— An intuitive, feature rich chart (a circle?) that you can study that gives the audience some sense of where each of the 100 Senators stand on impeachment.
— It would be set up so the one person who really has the most power in all of this — the 67th Senator — would be really focused on. Whomever falls as the 67 Senator relative to both party affiliation and alphabet would be the one person we would learn the most about.
— It would be dynamic, so it would change as we rush towards the actual trial and vote.

It’s just too complicated for me to do alone because the vote is done in alphabetical order, so Republicans and Democrats are scattered across the actual vote as it proceeds.

Chop, chop, someone do this.

Why Trump’s Taxes Will Be A Big Deal, No Matter What

Taxes, what taxes?
Shelton Bumgarner

by Shelton Bumgarner
@bumgarls

Ahhh, Trump’s ever-elusive taxes. I don’t know exactly what’s going on in the Federal courts right now to give you a detailed explanation, but I enough to get some sense of the significance. Really, at this point, the best case scenario for House Trump is they’re able to successfully slow-walk the whole thing past the Senate trial. Once Trump’s acquitted, House Trump can pretty much tell the rule of law to fuck off and do whatever the fuck they want. No power grab will be too brazen as we lurch towards the 2020 election which will, by definition, be neither free nor fair.

But let’s suppose SCOTUS rules one way or another in time for it to be relevant. Let’s go through the possible endgames.

SCOTUS Punts
If Justice Roberts simply punts the issue, then that’s a pretty big decision. Trump will have either cough his taxes up, or not. Either decision will be a massive turning point in not only House Trump’s political history, but the nation in general. More on this in a second.

SCOTUS Rules In House Trump’s Favor
Justice Roberts takes the case and fascist Republicans’ vision of a remaking the Judiciary finally pay off the way they crave, then Trump’s a Putin-style authoritarian. He’s above the law. Game over.

SCOTUS Rules Against House Trump
Like I mentioned, all this only matters if it happens in time to influence the existing impeachment process. Otherwise, lulz. So, let’s say the House Trump attempt to slow walk fails. In a 5-4 vote, Trump’s ordered to release his taxes immediately.

Trump Ignores This
While the dipshit MAGA fuckheads would spin this as a mere “process crime,” in fact, it would be the biggest Constitutional Crisis since the end of the Civil War. If Trump simply ignored this ruling, it would likely be thrown into the impeachment pot as “obstruction of SCOTUS.” For the average dumbass MAGA person who just hates black people and women, I guess they’ll feel free to overlook this situation until Trump’s acquitted and the ICE camps can be weaponized.

Trump Abides By This
If Trump weirdly does the right thing and releases his taxes, this just might save his sorry ass. If everything we’re afraid of is in them, is in them, it would be such an explosion that House Democrats would realize they had to dig into the taxes to sort out exactly the astonishing scope of Trump’s criminality. By the time the dust settles, it’s Feburary 2020, “let the people decide” is a Republican mantra and Trump is free to get Peter Thiel to bribe individual Electors. Or not. There’s a small chance it would be this taxes that might tip the political scale against him in the Senate. But I find that dubious.

It’s more likely to be Trump completely losing his shit or MAGA anti-impeachment violence that would ultimately cook Trump’s political goose.