Four things to consider from another Freaky Friday, brought to you in part by a corrupt president and his criminal regime.

1)  Paul Manafort is screwed.  It may well be the case that Manafort did not cooperate with the Mueller probe because he was hoping to get a pardon from Trump.  But, as many of the hard-core resistors on Twitter have been predicting for months, the Mueller team was working closely with other law enforcement agencies at the state level and now New York State prosecutors are ready to charge Manafort with state crimes, including violating state tax laws–charges that cannot be pardoned by Trump.  So no matter how you slice it, Paul Manafort will likely spend the rest of his life in jail.  It stands to reason that many of those charged by Mueller also face this same state-level legal jeopardy, which virtually eliminates the leverage that a presidential pardon from Trump might have in curtailing their cooperation.

2) Social media has been full of stories about how tough Amy Klobuchar was on her staff, and how scandalous it was that Kamala Harris allowed local jurisdictions to go after corrupt prosecutors instead of the state, and how reprehensible it was for Elizabeth Warren to believe family lore that she was more Native American than she actually was.  As compelling as any of these rumors might be, it’s highly likely that Russia is responsible for promoting them and making them seem more extreme than they actually are.  And just speaking for myself, I refuse to give a shit about any of them.  In light of the challenges we face with a grotesque, lying, criminal fascist in the White House, and a corrupt, spineless, unAmerican GOP leadership enabling him, it doesn’t matter to me if Diane Feinstein (who isn’t even running for president) was short with a group of school children.  I will never agree 100% percent with any candidate or politician, and I sure as hell won’t become outraged and berate a Democrat because some part of their platform isn’t exactly what I want–which is what Trump and Russia want me to do.  For now, the Republican party is dead to me, and ANY Democrat will more closely align with my values and principles than a Republican.  So to quote Mike Pryzgoda (@mikeprz81) on Twitter:

Trump and his family are trying to turn this country into a fascist autocratic state, so I don’t really give a shit if Klobuchar eats her salad with a comb or how Feinstein reacted, I’m more of a big picture LET’S SAVE DEMOCRACY kind of guy. #resist

I’m going to keep repeating this point, so I apologize in advance.

3) Amanda Marcotte in Salon published an excellent article about the decades-long project that the Republicans engineered to destroy trust in politicians and political institutions that is now allowing supporters of Trump to ignore his crimes and corruption.

The key to Trump’s defense with his base, I would argue, is not that he tries to convince them he’s innocent, at least not in the traditional sense of “someone who didn’t do the crimes he’s suspected of.” Instead, the strategy is to suggest that all politicians are corrupt, everyone is complicit and therefore all investigations are just bad-faith power grabs conducted for purely partisan reasons.  That strategy is working with Trump’s base because that’s exactly the message Republicans have been instilling in their voters for decades.

It’s an excellent take on decades of demonization by the GOP. Here’s a link to the full article:

4) Finally, there are two TOWN HALLS today with Congressman Antonio Delgado.  The first is at 1pm in Tannersville, Greene County, at the Orpheum Center, 6050 Main Street. The second is at 4:15 in Ellenville, Ulster County, at the Ellenville High School Auditorium, 28 Maple Avenue.

Enjoy your weekend and keep resisting…

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