Appeals Court Denies Trump

Rule of Law: A federal appeals court early today rejected the Justice Department request to immediately reinstate President Trump’s travel and immigration ban. Just two weeks in, he’s in a battle over the power of the presidency.

Trump yesterday fired a petulantly outraged tweet at the US district judge in Seattle who initially blocked the president’s immigration order. “The opinion of this so-called judge, which essentially takes law-enforcement away from our country, is ridiculous and will be overturned!” It’s right from the Trump playbook to attack the personality or credentials of an opponent.

In response to the order of U.S. District Judge James Robart, the State Department has lifted the hold on visas held by people from seven Muslim countries named in President Trump’s immigration and travel order. People whose visas were physically cancelled or destroyed still have a problem.

Trump continued his Twitter tirade with a string of posts including, “What is our country coming to when a judge can halt a Homeland Security travel ban and anyone, even with bad intentions, can come into U.S.?”

The Washington Post has published an interesting story about how Trump’s new Secretary of Homeland Security refused a direct order from Trump political advisor Steve Bannon to include greed card holders among people to be refused entry to the country. According to the Post, DHS Secretary John Kelly, a Marine veteran, told Bannon the he is not in the secretary’s chain of command and Kelly didn’t have to follow the order. Kelly, according to the Post, said he had to hear it from the president himself. Trump never called.

The story also says that in a 2am conference call, hours later, Kelly, Defense Secy. James Mattis, and the yet-to-be-confirmed Secy. of State Rex Tillerson complained that they had not been informed about Trump’s immigration order during its conception.

The Business of President: Trust papers filed by Donald Trump reveal that he didn’t really separate himself from his companies or their financial interest. While naming his oldest son, Donald, Jr., and the company’s chief financial officer as trustees, the company must still report profits and losses to the President and he has the power to revoke the trust at any time.

Because the entire Trump family is covered by the Secret Service, the business of Trump and the business of government is intermixed. Eric Trump flew to Uruguay this past week for a company event, racking up $97,800 in hotel bills for Secret Service and embassy staff. The younger Trump hosted an “ultra-exclusive” party at a Trump hotel.

Super Bowl LI: For those who never took Latin, that’s “51.”

Quarterback Tom Brady, steering the most hated team in football, plays his 7th Super Bowl tonight in Houston. He’ll be hard to stop.

Brady has won for Super Bowls, although only one of them was within the last 11 years. The Patriot QB sat out the first four games of the season for the ball deflation scandal, but his offense has scored at least 30 points in all of the 14 games he started this season. The Falcons will have to find a way to prevent being picked apart by pinpoint passes.

Don’t write off  Atlanta and its hot quarterback Matt Ryan. He has three crafty receivers to throw to. Atlanta got to the Super Bowl by scoring 30 points or more in six consecutive games.

The game is at 6:30 EST, but  kickoff time always seems to be a suggestion rather than a rule.

Big Screen: Actress Dakota Johnson told an interviewer that she had to take a shot of whiskey before filming sex scenes in “Fifty Shades Darker,” the sequel to the BDSM movie “Fifty Shades of Grey.” Now she has something in common with moviegoers who needed a stiff shot to watch the original “Fifty Shades.”

Small Screen: Comic actress Melissa McCarthy played White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer last night on Saturday Night Live, and it wasn’t flattering. Holding a mock press conference in a badly-fitting suit, McCarthy, as Spicer, said, she would be “apologizing, on behalf of you, to me, for how you have treated me these last two weeks.”

“And that apology is not accepted,” she said.


Thursday, February 22, 2018

Page Two

Jaw Meet Floor

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

The Small President

Thursday, December 15, 2016

The Cuba Diaries

Sunday, March 13, 2016

An Alphabet of Maladies

Friday, February 26, 2016

The Healthcare Confusion Act

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Freedom from Speech

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Too Big to Fire

Friday, June 19, 2015

More Probable Than Not

Thursday, May 14, 2015

It's Been Said

" 'The enemy of the people,'" was what the president of the United States called the free press in 2017 ... It is a testament to the condition of our democracy that our own president uses words infamously spoken by Josef Stalin to describe his enemies. It bears noting that so fraught with malice was the phrase 'enemy of the people,' that even Nikita Khrushchev forbade its use, telling the Soviet Communist Party that the phrase had been introduced by Stalin for the purpose of 'annihilating such individuals' who disagreed with the supreme leader."
Arizona republican Sen. Jeff Flake speaking on the floor today.

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