📺 “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” Iran Deal | HBO

Watched "Last Week Tonight with John Oliver" Iran Deal from HBO
'Iran Deal' is the worst deal of all time in Donald Trump's Eyes. But John Oliver Explains Why It Is Better Than No Deal. Because this deal strictly forbade Iran to develop any sort of nuclear weapons. And all of their declared nuclear sites have close monitoring, as well as any suspected site could be monitored within 24 days of the request. The sad part is, top advisers of Trump administration are also against the deal. That is why John prepared a new ad with catheter cowboy to explain the matter to Trump and scheduled it on his favorite Sean Hannity's show.

This would be funny if it weren’t so painfully true. The idea of placing ads on Hannity is pretty intriguing though.

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📺 “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” Corporate Taxes | HBO

Watched "Last Week Tonight with John Oliver" Corporate Taxes from HBO
Directed by Paul Pennolino. With David Kaye, John Oliver. John Oliver talks about the Corporate Taxes. He gives examples of how big corporation always tries to evade taxes. They are using the loop holes in American tax system. He also expressed his doubts about the promises were made by the new tax plan. He used the unfruitful past experience of tax holiday to support his claim.
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🎧 ‘The Daily’: Gina Haspel and the Shadow of Torture | New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: Gina Haspel and the Shadow of Torture by Michael Barbaro from nytimes.com

The Central Intelligence Agency is waging an unusual campaign to make Gina Haspel its next leader, despite her polarizing past. Why do officers see her most controversial quality as her greatest asset?

On today’s episode:

• Adam Goldman, a reporter who covers the intelligence community for The Times.

• John Bennett, a former chief of the C.I.A.’s clandestine service who retired in 2013.

Background reading:

• Gina Haspel, President Trump’s nominee for C.I.A. director, is expected to face tough questions at a Senate confirmation hearing on Wednesday about her involvement in torture and secret prisons after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

• Ms. Haspel offered to withdraw her nomination last week amid concerns that her role in the brutal interrogation of a Qaeda suspect in Thailand would scuttle her confirmation.

Apparently there’s a broader story to be told about Haspel than the one that’s been circulating recently. Perhaps she’s not as pro-torture as previously indicated?

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🎧 ‘The Daily’: The Return of Rudy Giuliani | New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: The Return of Rudy Giuliani by Michael Barbaro from nytimes.com

Since joining President Trump’s legal team, Rudolph W. Giuliani has repeatedly made attention-grabbing TV appearances in which he has antagonized Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel overseeing the Russia investigation. The strategy is reminiscent of one that Mr. Giuliani has used before — 30 years ago, as a prosecutor in New York City taking on the Mafia.


On today’s episode:

• Michael Winerip, who covered Mr. Giuliani’s rise as a Manhattan prosecutor in the 1980s for The New York Times.

Background reading:

• Mr. Giuliani’s revelation that President Trump reimbursed his personal lawyer for a $130,000 payment to Stephanie Clifford, the pornographic film actress known as Stormy Daniels, may expose the president to new legal and political troubles.

• In an interview on Sunday, Mr. Giuliani suggested it was possible that other women had received hush money on behalf of Mr. Trump and that the president might invoke the Fifth Amendment to avoid testifying in the Russia investigation.

• Mr. Giuliani’s recent criticism of law enforcement has come as a surprise to those who have known him as one of its fiercest advocates.

So the implication here is not so much that Trump is bringing in someone who has been a champion for him, but that he’s brought in someone with experience prosecuting massive corruption and criminal enterprise similar to the mafia.

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🎧 ‘The Daily’: The Allegations Against Ronny Jackson | New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: The Allegations Against Ronny Jackson by Michael Barbaro from nytimes.com

The nomination of Dr. Ronny L. Jackson, President Trump’s personal doctor, as the next head of Veterans Affairs has come to an abrupt stop. Now, Congress is beginning to examine several alarming allegations from unidentified whistle-blowers that derailed the doctor’s Senate confirmation process.

On today’s episode:

• Michael D. Shear, a White House correspondent for The Times.

Background reading:

• President Trump hinted at a midday news conference that Dr. Jackson might soon withdraw from consideration for the role of Veterans Affairs secretary. By the evening, however, the White House moved to aggressively defend the doctor, calling his record “impeccable.”

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👓 Kushner-backed health care project gets ‘devastating’ review | Politico

Read Kushner-backed health care project gets ‘devastating’ review by Arthur Allen (POLITICO)
The Pentagon report could delay the VA’s plans to install the multibillion-dollar software project begun under Obama.
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🎧 ‘The Daily’: California vs. the E.P.A. | New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: California vs. the E.P.A. by Michael Barbaro from nytimes.com
An auto emissions battle is brewing between the Environmental Protection Agency and the state of California. Separately, James Comey tore into the president on national TV.

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🎧 ‘The Daily’: Weighing the Risks of a Syria Strike | The New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: Weighing the Risks of a Syria Strike by Michael Barbaro from nytimes.com
President Trump has promised retaliation for a suspected chemical attack that killed dozens of Syrian civilians. What would that look like?

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🎧 ‘The Daily’: A ‘Big Price to Pay’ in Syria | The New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: A ‘Big Price to Pay’ in Syria by Michael Barbaro from nytimes.com

After a suspected chemical attack in Syria, President Trump said Iran and Russia were responsible for backing “Animal Assad.” But Damascus may view the United States as being focused on a different fight.

President Trump has warned that there will be a “big price to pay” after yet another suspected chemical weapons attack in Syria.

But the suspicion that Syria continues to use those weapons suggests it views the United States as being focused on a different fight.



On today’s episode:

• Ben Hubbard, who covers the Middle East for The New York Times.

Background reading:

• Dozens suffocated in Syria after a reported chemical attack on a rebel-held suburb of Damascus.

• Trump sought a way out of Syria, but the latest attack is pulling him back in.

• There have been similar deadly assaults for years, including one in 2013 that killed more than 1,400.

Listening to this a few days on it sounds more like Trump has even more bluster than Obama, but he’s doing roughly the same thing. Yet again, small countries that should know far better are continuing to trod on their own people. Sadly, America is doing it to, just with far more sophisticated weapons. If we can’t figure out the right and wrong at the big obvious scale, how can we have proper morality at the smaller and more subtle scales?

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🎧 ‘The Daily’: From Fox to Twitter to the National Guard | The New York Times

Listened to Listen to ‘The Daily’: From Fox to Twitter to the National Guard by Michael Barbaro from nytimes.com

It started with a report on Fox News, and ended with calls for troops at the border with Mexico. We look at how President Trump’s approach to immigration transformed over 72 hours.



We look at how President Trump’s approach to immigration transformed over just 72 hours.

On today’s episode:

• Julie Hirschfeld Davis, who covers the White House for The New York Times.

Background reading:

• President Trump said on Tuesday that he planned to deploy the National Guard to the border with Mexico to confront what the White House calls the growing threat posed by illegal immigrants and crime.

• Three days of presidential tweets contained many false and misleading accusations. Here’s a fact-check.

Another data point in the story that we have a System 1 only President who completely lacks any System 2 capabilities.

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🎧 ‘The Daily’: The Prospect of Pardons | The New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: The Prospect of Pardons by Michael Barbaro from nytimes.com

As the special counsel built his case against Michael T. Flynn and Paul Manafort, pressure was mounting for the men to to cooperate with the Russia inquiry.Then a lawyer for President Trump came to them with an idea: What if the president were to pardon his former advisers?



On today’s episode:

• Michael S. Schmidt, who has been covering the Russia investigation for The New York Times.

Background reading:

• The talks about possible pardons for two former Trump adviserssuggest that the White House was concerned about what Mr. Flynn and Mr. Manafort might reveal to the special counsel in the Russia investigation.

Presidents should not be able to grant or push potential pardons in actions in which they’re so closely involved.

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👓 ‘The Daily’: Rex Tillerson’s Firing and North Korea | The New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: Rex Tillerson’s Firing and North Korea by Michael Barbaro from nytimes.com
Mr. Tillerson’s push for nuclear talks put him at odds with his boss. He has been replaced as secretary of state just as President Trump prepares to meet Kim Jong-un.

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👓 Former FBI No.2 McCabe fired; claims he is being targeted | Reuters

Read Former FBI No.2 McCabe fired; says Trump administration targeted him (Reuters)
U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions fired the FBI's former No. 2 official Andrew McCabe on Friday, prompting McCabe to say he was targeted for being a witness into whether President Donald Trump tried to obstruct the probe of Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
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👓 Right enough | Doc Searls

Read Right enough by Doc Searls (doc.blog)
I've now read Michael Wolff's Fire and Fury twice, and have seen nothing in the news since the book went to bed (last November) that has me doubting what's in it. Even if not a single thing in it is factually accurate, all of it rings true. See, what Michael wrote is a portrait, not a photograph. And it's an artful one, since Michael is a helluva good writer. He's also the best media critic we've got. And Trump is, above all, a media character. So are, or were, all the many characters who surrounded Trump in the book's story of the administration's first eleven months. Now only three of those characters are left: Kellyanne Conway, John Kelly and the dual entity Steve Bannon calls Jarvanka.
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