Controversy over Confederate Statues Inspires Betsy DeVos to Google Civil War | The New Yorker


The raging controversy over Confederate statues has impelled Betsy DeVos to Google the Civil War, the Education Secretary confirmed on Thursday.

DeVos said that, prior to Googling the Civil War, she believed that parents should have a choice as to whether or not their children learned history in the nation’s schools, “but now I’m starting to rethink that.”

Source: Controversy over Confederate Statues Inspires Betsy DeVos to Google Civil War | The New Yorker

Bad News for Trump Keeps Coming as His Standing With His Base Erodes | US News


.. increasingly visible discomfort from Republican politicians is important because it helps set up a permission-structure, signaling to rank-and-file Republicans that criticizing the president is OK.

After all some portion of Trump-approvers are undoubtedly true believers but some nontrivial number may be privately uncomfortable with him while expressing outward support based on partisan instinct and tribal loyalty. As they see high-profile party members break with the president more and more will feel empowered to do likewise.

This also holds true for this week’s mass migration of business leaders from the Trump advisory orbit.

And it cuts both ways: As the president Trump-angulates himself away from the GOP he forces a choice for rank-and-file GOPers between himself and the party.

And while he enjoys high partisan popularity, it’s too soon to say what portion of that is classic party loyalty and what part is cult of Trump-manship.

Source: Bad News for Trump Keeps Coming as His Standing With His Base Erodes | The Report: Opinion | US News

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President Trump Revives the Culture Wars | US News


Historians trace the modern version of the culture wars to President Richard Nixon, who tried to divide the country on the basis of race, class and the acceptance of “family values” in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

Trump appears to be following Nixon’s lead today as he attempts to appeal to white voters on wedge issues including race and crime.

Source: President Trump Revives the Culture Wars | The Report | US News

Loss of top cyber officials spells challenge for Trump | TheHill


Specific authorities of CIOs range from agency to agency, though they are broadly tasked with overseeing policy and security decisions when it comes to their individual government body’s IT infrastructure. Some CIOs are political appointments, while others are not.

Several occupants of these positions are currently serving on an acting basis, including those at the departments of Commerce, Transportation and Veterans Affairs and the Environmental Protection Agency.

Source: Loss of top cyber officials spells challenge for Trump | TheHill

Trump drops plan to create infrastructure council: White House


Trump said he dissolved the American Manufacturing Council and the Strategic and Policy Forum “rather than putting pressure” on its members, although both groups were preparing to disband on their own when Trump made his announcement on Twitter.

The snubs from chief executives raised questions about Trump’s ability to marshal the business community behind his policy goals.

Source: Trump drops plan to create infrastructure council: White House

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Trump’s attacks could leave him friendless if impeachment comes


There is little serious talk being heard in Congress about removing Trump from office.

Two House Democrats have introduced an article of impeachment alleging obstruction of justice by the president in connection with an ongoing investigation of possible ties between his 2016 campaign and Moscow.

But Republicans control the House, as well as the Senate, and the article of impeachment has gained little traction.

Source: Trump’s attacks could leave him friendless if impeachment comes

Why Trump Blames “Both Sides” For Charlottesville


In other words, Trump may do what autocrats have always done: create or exploit a crisis in order to consolidate power.

By framing Charlottesville as caused by two equally violent sides, Trump is developing a framework through which to crush opponents of racism, who also happen to be opponents of Trump. By showing he will protect his neo-nazi followers, he encourages them to riot again, as they will not be blamed by him.

The blame would fall squarely on the anti-racist protesters, who Trump would claim provoked the violence (we can argue, if you wish, whether striking the nazis who descend upon your city is an act of violence or an act of self-defense).

This propaganda would likely be aimed at his eroding base of moderate Republican supporters.

Source: Why Trump Blames “Both Sides” For Charlottesville

The Fight for Racial Justice Can’t Stop With Fixing a Broken Policing System | Pacific Standard


The chokehold that killed Eric Garner, a maneuver prohibited by the NYPD, takes center stage in Paul Butler’s latest book, Chokehold: Policing Black Men.

Butler employs the chokehold—the maneuver as well as the metaphor—as, in his words, “a way of understanding how American inequality is imposed.”

Although applicable to many marginalized groups, Butler uses the experiences of black men to unpack and understand the chokehold. He takes the literal, physical chokehold and applies it to the figurative chokehold with which the criminal justice system has gripped the lives of black American men.

Source: The Fight for Racial Justice Can’t Stop With Fixing a Broken Policing System – Pacific Standard

Trump’s Actions on a Recently Drafted Climate Change Report Are ‘Troubled and Opaque’ | Pacific Standard


The report was submitted in late June and the Trump administration has broad authority to review its findings. Any one of a number of government agencies can block its release, which is ultimately subject to presidential review.

“As a climate scientist, I feel communicating this science is a moral responsibility,” she said, noting that the contributors from academia were working without pay and taking away time from their teaching and scholarships. “We are the physicians of the planet,” Katharine Hayhoe added. “Climate change poses risks to people and our economy.”

Source: Trump’s Actions on a Recently Drafted Climate Change Report Are ‘Troubled and Opaque’ – Pacific Standard

Ivanka and Jared Vacationing in Moral Vacuum | The New Yorker


She said that spending time in a moral vacuum had done her husband a world of good.

“This is Jared’s favorite thing to do, besides meeting with Russians,” she said.

Source: Ivanka and Jared Vacationing in Moral Vacuum | The New Yorker