Bannon Walks it Back, Women in Black

What I Meant Was: In Washington, it’s called “walking that back.” President Trump’s former Chief Strategist Steve Bannon modified but didn’t retract his comments about a “treasonous” 2016 meeting between top campaign staffers and a Russian lawyer dealing dirt on Hillary Clinton.

Present in that meeting were Donald Trump Jr., Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner, and campaign chairman Paul Manafort.

Bannon said in a written statement, ““My comments were aimed at Paul Manafort, a seasoned campaign professional with experience and knowledge of how the Russians operate. He should have known they are duplicitous, cunning and not our friends. To reiterate, those comments were not aimed at Don Jr.”

The trouble is that Don Jr. accepted the pitch for the meeting and made it happen. It doesn’t matter whether he knew what he was doing.

After being denounced by President Trump for attacking the First Boy, Bannon said, “Donald Trump Jr. is both a patriot and a good man. He has been relentless in his advocacy for his father and the agenda that has helped turn our country around.”

Bannon is in danger of losing his national voice. Once an aide who had the direct ear of the President, he’s now being dismissed in White House talking points as someone whose role had been “greatly exaggerated” by the press.

Women in Black: The women of Hollywood wore black to the Golden Globe Awards in Los Angeles last night to draw attention to sexual harassment and gender equality in the entertainment industry. A lot of male dominoes have fallen since the unmasking of movie mogul Harvey Weinstein as a sexual predator.

Oprah Winfrey said from the said, “I want all the girls watching here and now to know that a new day is on the horizon!”

Host Seth Meyers said in his monologue, “They tried to get a woman to host this show, they really did. They said, ‘Hey, how would you like to come and be judged by some of the most powerful people in Hollywood?’ And women were like, ‘Hmm, well, where is it?’ And they said, ‘It’s at a hotel,’ and long story short, I’m your host tonight.”

The enormity of Hollywood’s and the country’s sexual harassment nightmare is still being documented. The LA Times reports that 395 women have come to them with reports about just one movie maker, James Toback.

The only exceptions to the black dress code were German fashion model Barbara Meier, who wore something flowery, and actress Blanca Blanco, who wore a red number that appeared as though its maker ran out of material. It was kind of rojo, ro ….

The Fakies: President Trump is still promising to hand out awards for the best in “fake news.” He tweeted yesterday, “The Fake News Awards, those going to the most corrupt & biased of the Mainstream Media, will be presented to the losers on Wednesday, January 17th, rather than this coming Monday. The interest in, and importance of, these awards is far greater than anyone could have anticipated!”

It will be interesting to see whether the awards are accompanied by citations proving intentional lies and fictions in the press.

While we’re talking about the press, CNN’s Jake Tapper abruptly cut off an interview with presidential aide Stephen Miller saying, “I think I’ve wasted enough of my viewers’ time. Thank you.”

Miller had been trying to filibuster through questions about the unflattering book “Fire and Fury” about the Trump White House.

Miller then refused to leave the set and had to be removed by security.

Wild Weekend: In NFL “Wild Card” games, the Jacksonville Jaguars beat the Buffalo Bills yesterday, and Saturday the Tennessee Titans came from 18 points behind to win over Kansas City to earn berths in the playoffs.

In a rare accident, Tennessee quarterback Marcus Mariota caught his own pass that bounced off a defender’s hands and scored a touchdown. The last time that happened was in 1997.

The Obit Page: Ray Thomas, a founding member of the 1960s British rock group The Moody Blues, died at home in in England just months before the band is to be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. He was 76.

The band’s hit “Go Now” was a breakout for the orchestral sound that became known as progressive rock. It was Thomas who played the haunting flute solo for “Nights in White Satin.”

Travel and Resorts: A water main broke yesterday at JFK International Airport, flooding the baggage claim area of Terminal 4 with several inches of water. Travelers, some of whom had been delayed for close to a day were forced out into the single-digit cold.

And when they finally get on a plane, the seats will be smaller than the last time they flew.

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Wednesday, January 24, 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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