The transcript of Donald Trump Jr.’s testimony to the Senate was released today. And we learned that Junior has the memory of a goldfish. There is no event significant enough that this antithesis of Mr. Memory isn’t capable of forgetting. You have to wonder at the scope of his amnesia. But then reality sets in. It may be believable that you can’t remember what you had for breakfast last Tuesday. But not that you can’t remember whether you have ever had breakfast.

Congress should make a rule that a witness is limited to a finite number of “I don’t remember”s. Past that, the assumption should be that the subject is in effect ‘taking the fifth’.

There will be protests. Jeff Sessions will be particularly opposed to the measure. But while Congress’ reputation is at a low ebb, it is the constitutionally mandated ‘people’s house’ and as such shouldn’t be held in disdain by some low-rent jackanapes.

(Aside: I do wish that a Senator had asked Junior why he thought he was qualified to run a company with memory as weak as his.)

When Junior wasn’t forgetting things, he was telling such whoppers that even evangelicals bushed at the audacity. For example, he claimed his father was unaware of the infamous meeting of the campaign with Russians at Trump Tower in 2016.

Let’s dissect this absurd assertion. Can Junior expect anyone beyond the most blinkered zealot to believe that a powwow between Trump’s son, his son-in-law, and his campaign manager on one side and agents of a foreign government, the Russians no less, on the other, wasn’t known to his father?

Consider the Trumps. They know it is far easier to celebrate the promise of an action than the completion of it. There is no way that Junior, having set up this opportunity to get ‘dirt’ on his father’s opponent, wouldn’t have immediately hopped on a phone or run down to Dad’s office to show off his new finger-painting.

The lie is obvious and despicable.

But even as I say that, let me offer a word – not so much in defense of Junior – but in explanation of his atrophied character. He was raised surrounded by sycophants who no doubt showered him with undeserved compliments to gain favor from his father — flattery is the curse of the children of successful or prominent people. Without proper guidance from their parents, they can assume they were instrumental in the family’s achievements and believe that they are more than they are.

And Trump Sr. would be the last man to give an impressionable young man good guidance. From dad, Junior would learn that bombast, hyperbole, incivility and lying — often just for the sake of lying — were key attributes to get ahead in business.

Perhaps a smarter man, a more nuanced thinker, would have seen the trap of his upbringing. But Junior is the type of idiot who is convinced he is the smartest man in the room — no matter who’s in the room.

Thankfully for Junior, he paid enough heed to his lawyers that at first examination he didn’t tell any provable lies before Congress. However, Mueller knows what Mueller knows. And while Junior wasn’t sworn in, the transcript reveals that he was explicitly told that lying to Congress is a crime.

Should Junior and Mueller come to a showdown, it will not bode well for the Prince. In a battle of wits, he is half the man Mueller is.


Anti-Semitism 2.0: Evangelicals Find Jews Useful Today and Disposable Tomorrow.

May 15, 2018

Pastor Robert Jeffress is a prominent evangelical. He was on hand to lead prayers at the opening of the American Embassy in Jerusalem. His presence illustrates an intrinsic and callous sadism of evangelical philosophy. Especially when it comes to their eschatology — or their understanding of end times. Let me explain. Evangelicals believe that for the second coming of […]

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What Effect Do Anti-Choice Laws Have on Abortion Rates? It’s not what you think.

March 19, 2018

In Mississippi, an abortion bill is working its way through the state legislature. It would restrict abortions to the first fifteen weeks of pregnancy. Pro-lifers celebrate this as one more step towards the total abolition of the procedure. Pro-choicers bemoan this as yet one more measure that will shackle women to their biology and reduce them to potentially […]

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Kentucky Governor Calls Kim Davis an Inspiration to Children

March 10, 2018

Kim Davis, newly modest Christian, has milked her fifteen minutes of fame with a book, “Under God’s Authority: The Kim Davis Story”. Lest you think that Kim has discovered a heretofore unknown talent for writing, let’s note that the actual scribing was done by John Aman and Mat Staver —  respectively the creative director and the founder […]

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Chickens in the ‘Home of the Brave’. Fear and Loathing in Conservative America.

March 1, 2018

Conservatives crow of their steely strength in the face of adversity — ‘America strong’ — while at the same time fret endlessly about all the threats to their way of life. Their leader, Donald Trump, is an exemplar of their knee-knocking courage. One moment he announces a willingness to stare down a lunatic firing an AR-15, the next […]

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Chutzpah: A Conservative Tells Democrats to Stop Playing Politics with the Russian Investigation

February 24, 2018

Marc Thiessen slavishly followed the conservative playbook in writing a Washington Post op-ed piece on Russian interference in the 2016 elections. He cooked the evidence and blamed the Democrats. The title of his article set the tone: “Democrats are crippling America’s response to Russian interference.” As has repeatedly been pointed out —  and equally often ignored by Republicans —  the GOP controls both branches […]

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Trump’s Tweets Victory in the Russian Investigation – Just a Little Prematurely.

February 17, 2018

Trump tweeted this afternoon. He was in Florida, but his mind had moved on from the Parkland school shooting, and his sole subject was the Russians and their election interference. Specifically, how his election was legitimate — and not a present from Putin. He started with an opinion piece from a reliable backer — the New […]

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The NRA’s Culture of Death. How Fetishizing a Tool Kills Kids.

February 16, 2018

Here we are once again in the aftermath of yet another gun massacre. And once again we will do nothing. Typical is Ted Cruz’s reaction, “This could happen anywhere, we have seen that evil could occur whether in Parkland or in a church or central Texas or in schools across the country. Evil is sadly always present.” What […]

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The Founders’ Dream Became an American Nightmare.

January 18, 2018

America has become everything the Founders hated. Their vision of the new nation was a meritocracy where by dint of pluck and hard work any American could get ahead. In their creation, the citizenry would escape the medieval superstitions of a state religion working in lockstep with an autocratic government. Americans themselves would decide on who would […]

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