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Inter Press Service



The Guardian

  • Donald Trump appeals $454m ruling in New York civil fraud case – live

    Ex-president challenges judge’s ruling that he owes $454m because he lied about his net worth to secure better loan termsHouse Speaker Mike Johnson is under pressure from Democrats on Capitol Hill to keep the government funded (as well as Ukraine’s resistance to Russia and other needs) and under pressure from the right wingers of his own Republican party in the House to be the speaker of “no” when it comes to anything the Democrats want.In this atmosphere, Johnson posted on X/Twitter yesterday that he hoped to reach a conclusion on government spending “as soon as possible”.Unfortunately, extreme House Republicans have shown they’re more capable of causing chaos than passing legislation. It is my sincere hope that in the face […]

  • US investigates organ collection groups for potentially defrauding government

    Investigation looking into whether groups overbilled Department of Veteran Affairs and arranged kickbacks between organizationsUS authorities are investigating organizations that coordinate organ donations over allegations that the nonprofits are potentially defrauding the federal government.The federal investigation, first reported by the Washington Post, is looking at several organ procurement organizations (OPOs) that secure organs for transplants within the United States. Continue reading...

  • Putin ‘gains every day’ Congress fails to send Ukraine aid, top Biden official says

    National security adviser Jake Sullivan urges Republican House speaker to line up vote on package, which he predicts would passVladimir Putin “gains every day” the US House does not pass a new aid package for Ukraine, Joe Biden’s national security adviser warned, as its president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, warned of dire outcomes unless Ukraine receives US military aid within one month.Ahead of a crunch week in Washington that could end in a government shutdown – in part made possible by hardline Republican opposition to new support for Kyiv – Jake Sullivan told CNN that “the reality is that Putin gains every day that Ukraine does not get the resources it needs and Ukraine suffers.” Continue reading...

  • Hunter Biden says democracy is at stake in his battle to stay sober

    Joe Biden’s son says he faces ‘ultimate test for a recovering addict’ as failure could be used against father in 2024 electionIn a rare interview, Hunter Biden said his battle to stay sober is unique because failure would be used as a political cudgel as his father seeks a second term as US president.“Most importantly, you have to believe that you’re worth the work, or you’ll never be able to get sober,” Joe Biden’s son told Axios on Monday. “But I often do think of the profound consequences of failure here. Continue reading...

  • Alabama is using the notion that embryos are people to surveil and harass women | Moira Donegan

    Even before the court ruled in favor of this vulgar fiction, state authorities relied on the concept to intimidate and jail womenSomething that’s important to remember about last week’s ruling by the Alabama supreme court, which held that frozen embryos were persons under state law, is that the very absurdity of the claim is itself a demonstration of power. That a frozen embryo – a microscopic bit of biological information that can’t even be called tissue, a flick laden with the hopes of aspiring parents but fulfilling none of them – is equivalent in any way to a child is the sort of thing you can only say if no one has the power to laugh at you. The Alabama supreme court is the final court of review in that state. It cannot be […]


Inside Climate News


    Quanta Magazine

    • A Quantum Trick Implied Eternal Stability. Now the Idea May Be Falling Apart.

      A series of advances seemed to promise the impossible: the existence of quantum states that would never, ever fall into disarray. But physicists are now discovering that the pull of disorder may not be so easily overcome. The post A Quantum Trick Implied Eternal Stability. Now the Idea May Be Falling Apart. first appeared on Quanta Magazine

    The Real News Network

    The Marshall Project

    Daily Yonder

    • Commentary: Carl Albert Didn’t Fall for the ‘White, Rural Rage’ Stereotype. We Shouldn’t Either.

      Carl Albert always fretted; But in 1968 the chronic worrywart had every reason for concern. A 22-year veteran of Congress, Albert represented Oklahoma’s rural third district. Nestled in the state’s southeast corner perpendicular to Arkansas and parallel to Texas, “Little Dixie,” as it was called, was restless. Vietnam, inflation, crime, and riots had riled voters. The post Commentary: Carl Albert Didn’t Fall for the ‘White, Rural Rage’ Stereotype. We Shouldn’t Either. appeared first on The Daily Yonder.

    • Oklahoma State University Program to Boost Online Retail Opportunities in Rural Areas

      A new program from Oklahoma State University aims to offer support to rural retailers as they transition to more online sales, and an expert in the field and fellow e-commerce owner say they believe the program is a step in the right direction.  The Oklahoma Rural E-Commerce Academy is a two-year, grant-funded program that will The post Oklahoma State University Program to Boost Online Retail Opportunities in Rural Areas appeared first on The Daily Yonder.

    • Misplaced Trust

      This story was originally published on Grist. Alina Sierra needs $6,405. In 2022, the 19-year-old Tohono O’odham student was accepted to the University of Arizona, her dream school. She would be the first in her family to go to college. This story also appeared in Grist Her godfather used to take her to the university’s campus when The post Misplaced Trust appeared first on The Daily Yonder.

    Fair Observer

    • The Myth of Economic Armageddon: The Truth About Western Sanctions on Russia

      At the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the West promised that Russia would receive sanctions from hell. The question is: Is it so?. So far, results show that sanctions against several hundred Russian companies, businessmen and politicians as well as sanctions against those companies in Europe and Asia that help Russia avoid the… Continue reading The Myth of Economic Armageddon: The Truth About Western Sanctions on Russia The post The Myth of Economic Armageddon: The Truth About Western Sanctions on Russia appeared first on Fair Observer.

    • Outside The Box: ChatGPT Sinks in the Gulf of Tonkin

      For a thesis I’m developing about trust in our political institutions, I needed to pinpoint the date of the critical event that set off the US engagement in the war in Vietnam six decades ago.  “When did the Gulf of Tonkin incident occur?” I asked. Instead of just providing a date, ChatGPT offered this explanation.… Continue reading Outside The Box: ChatGPT Sinks in the Gulf of Tonkin The post Outside The Box: ChatGPT Sinks in the Gulf of Tonkin appeared first on Fair Observer.

    • Short Story: “Hope for the Worst”

      Something to consider when reading/listening: To what extent does negative visualization make you grateful for what you have?  When the struggling playwright Alvin Rikard and his wife Poppy return home from the theatre, having watched a performance of one of his plays, Poppy announces that she wants to kill herself. “It wasn’t that bad was… Continue reading Short Story: “Hope for the Worst” The post Short Story: “Hope for the Worst” appeared first on Fair Observer.


    • In search of the last saola

      “I’ve seen grown men reduced to tears in the Annamite Mountains,” says wildlife biologist Lorraine Scotson of the mountain range along the border of Laos and Vietnam. “[Men] who are physically fit and really strong, adventurous types.” There’s a “claustrophobia that gets introduced” when you’re in these forest-covered mountains, she says. “Then you’ve got the leeches and the […]

    The Trace

    • Jury Finds the NRA, Wayne LaPierre Liable in Corruption Case

      A jury has found the National Rifle Association and its recently departed CEO, Wayne LaPierre, liable in a civil corruption case brought by New York Attorney General Letitia James. Jurors ordered LaPierre to pay the gun group more than $4.3 million in damages. Although LaPierre announced his resignation three days before the trial began in The post Jury Finds the NRA, Wayne LaPierre Liable in Corruption Case appeared first on The Trace.

    • The Unmasking of Wayne LaPierre

      In early January, Wayne LaPierre, the longtime head of the National Rifle Association, and Donald Trump were one floor apart in the civil branch of the New York State Supreme Court, each on trial for a range of financial misdeeds. There was an uncanny symmetry to the occasion. LaPierre had, for more than 30 years, The post The Unmasking of Wayne LaPierre appeared first on The Trace.

    • Brandon Johnson Is Making Progress on Gun Violence. But Some Chicagoans Still Feel Forgotten.

      Brandon Johnson won Chicago’s tight mayoral race last year against tough-on-crime candidate Paul Vallas with the message that he would prioritize long-term solutions to gun violence. But while Johnson pursues that pledge, the neighborhoods facing the brunt of the crisis are waiting for relief that can make their streets safer now. Princess Shaw is a The post Brandon Johnson Is Making Progress on Gun Violence. But Some Chicagoans Still Feel Forgotten. appeared first on The Trace.

    Fair Warning

      Yale Environment 360

      The Appeal



      Democracy Now!

      • Democracy Now! 2024-02-26 Monday

        Headlines for February 26, 2024; As 2-Month-Old Starves to Death in Gaza, Mosab Abu Toha Says His Own Family Is Eating Animal Feed; Gaza Ceasefire Could Save 75,000 from Death: Report from London School of Hygiene & Johns Hopkins; U.S. Anti-Terrorism Laws Are “Anti-Palestinian at the Core,” Chill First Amendment

      Common Dreams

      • Be Not Afraid: All Glory to God, Trump, Newsmax and Bigots

        CPAC is back! Weirder, shriller, fringier, more paranoid than ever, with many empty seats but God allegedly still on the side of the cranks and zealots. Cue vapid, vicious, fear-mongering goons who, now saying the ugly part aloud, bray about evil trans people, stampeding "aliens," looming communists and pet-marrying while heralding Christian nationalism, "cool" dictators, the "Bible Uncancelled" and the glad "end of democracy." A republic if you can keep it: Welcome to today's forsaken, brutish GOP. Of course CPAC 2024, in all its shabby lunacy, reflects the increasingly rabid party - Free J6! - from which it sprang. Once a marquee conservative event that drew top GOP lawmakers and presidential contenders, it's become an "emptier, jankier, lower-rent" affair by a party lunging ever further into the wingnut galaxy, its hapless denizens endlessly spouting stupid, awful things. Klan Mom MTG: Judge Arthur Engeron should be "disrobed" for undervaluing Mar-A-Hellhole. Trump lackey: His overlord's "Never Surrender High-Tops" will get him black votes because "Black America loves sneakers, especially in the inner city." DeSantis: Their V.P. should be a white man because "we don't want people representing 10 or 15% of the party to be in the driver’s seat." Tommy Tuberville: "These socialists and Marxists (want) to control our children" like Hillary's "it takes a village" because "she doesn’t like your home (and) she wants to indoctrinate your children"; also, the government "has become the father, they hate Christianity, they are going to come after you." The creepy avatar for this assemblage of "craven rodeo clowns" is House Speaker Mike Johnson, a smarmy, doe-eyed, coup-plotting, Christian fundamentalist who's spent his career working for hate groups, arguing deviant" homosexuals will destroy democracy, same-sex marriage is like people marrying their pets, and abortion is the killing of both "unborn children" and potential "able-bodied workers in the economy." Boasting the Bible is "my worldview," he took his then-13-year-old daughter to a Purity Ball where she pledged to him and God her "purity of mind, body and soul," he promotes a "Covenant Eyes" app that allows him and his 17-year-old son/ "accountability partner" to monitor each other's porn habits - clean slates all around! - and before he became Speaker God began waking him at night to prepare him to serve as Moses leading the nation through a "Red Sea moment...The Lord impressed upon my heart something was going to occur." And it was: The House was in such chaos they chose a backbench demagogue who thought governance meant saving America from heathens.Evidently, it doesn't. Teetering with a bare majority and boisterous hard-right clique, having lost another special election, seen its fake Biden impeachment implode and failed to address not just a looming shutdown but in fact anything at all, the bumbling House threw a dim-witted Hail Mary and decided to impeach Homeland Security head Alejandro Mayorkas - a move widely derided as "ridiculous" - for failing to fix the border after they sabotaged a bi-partisan bill to fix the border. Then they holed up at a Miami resort to lick their wounds at a leadership retreat where, rather than giving them leadership, Johnson gave them a sermon complete with Biblical references about America's ungodly moral decline, which made lawmakers worried about keeping their jobs grumble they were "not at church" and what the hell? Meanwhile, with the GOP's SCOTUS-facilitated war on women, IVF, and even "recreational sex" in full swing, Johnson fudges on his past (and future?) efforts to go after contraception - "I really don't remember any of those measures" - and lurches ahead crafting the patriarchal theocracy of his dreams.In that he's in step with The Big Orange Guy, who says once in power he'll create a task force to fight imaginary "anti-Christian bias" by "Marxists and fascists" (FYI not the same); he's also plotting with a right-wing think tank whose mission is to re-define America as "a nation under God," with a mandate declaring, "Freedom is defined by God, not man." In pursuit of Gilead - and because last month his PAC raised $8,508 as he spent $3.9 million, mostly on lawyers - he just spoke to a gathering of evangelical broadcasters while hawking gold IRAs "to protect your retirement from D.C.'s policies" and Ivermectin: "Make Care Great Again." He decried Dems murdering babies, "taking away knocker fields from children" and creating "dirty roads, crime, graffiti, swastickers." He also boasted "everybody on both sides" agrees Roe had to go, he's beating Haley by 91 points, "Israel is the capital of Israel," and "you're going to say as you want (and) believe in God" through "the love of Christ and the voices of famed...evangell...lllical....people and...eee-vangelis." Ok, so he can't say evangelical, but sure he's your guy. — (@) Big Awful Guy's implausible fervor was dutifully, garishly replicated at CPAC, held at the fantastically named Gaylord Convention Center outside D.C., where his and God's faithful touted "the greatest nation in all the world," except for, you know, the swastickers. Amidst red, white and blue everything and pounding bad music, the meager crowd drifted through a half-empty exhibit hall offering a Jan. 6-themed pinball game, a vibrating board to stand on to magically lose weight, an 18th-century-style booth likening Biden to King George lll, and a mountain of tawdry MAGA merch: "Woke Tears" water - "identifies as transparent" - rhinestone hats blaring "I Love Jesus" and "Fuck Biden," Trump shirts, hammocks, bobbleheads, sparkly gun-shaped purses. Sponsors were fewer and tackier: Moms For America, many groups with the word "liberty," Newsmax with ads shouting "you don't need those woke streaming services," and now they're letting their fascist flag fly proudly, the previously banished John Birch Society. Streaming was by the insurrectionist-favored Rumble; links often didn't work, but went to a donation page.Attendance was much sparser than previously, down from around 13,000 to the hundreds; when photos emerged of speakers facing a sea of empty seats, a right-wing site wailed, "What an embarrassment." Country singer Natasha Owens sang the national anthem in a huge black dress declaring "2nd Amendment Protects the First," and a banner trumpeted the new theme, tweaked from the unfortunately DeSantis-themed "woke" shtick: "Where Globalism (WHO and the UN) Goes To Die." Speakers were mostly not totalitarian BA-listers: The mayor of Riverton, Utah, an Oklahoma rep, the head of CPAC Australia, Peter Navarro who's headed to jail, a "businessman" who like everyone railed against transgender health care: "Woke doctors should be in prison." But there were several big shots: Stephen 'Goebbels' Miller, Mike 'Pillow' Lindell, Disgrace to All Brain Surgeons Ben Carson, the new authoritarian presidents of Argentina and El Salvador, and a ragged array of VP hopefuls - Noem, Vance, Scott, Stefanik, Gabbard, Ramaswamy - all of whom, in a relative universe, Big Guy has called "good" and "solid."Welcome speeches were by CPAC's devout Queen and molesting King, Mercedes and Matt Schlapp. Greeted with limp applause - "Lemme hear you! Wake up!" - Mercedes declaimed, "Be not afraid!" before telling her 17 listeners, "We're gonna take this country back (from the) leftist propaganda machine." "You are instruments," she said. "God has put you here at this time to do this great work that needs to be done...Communism pushes the culture of death, we push the culture of life. You are assembled here in front of God to be the front line in this battle." Facing multi-million-dollar sexual assault - and now document-shredding - charges by several young men, Matt announced, "This is our time, this is our moment." Pledging his support for the "unique American who is being persecuted, who is being tortured" by communist "lawfare," he turned to his sorcerer in the sky: "Lord God, you said that if we trust in you we will mount up with wings like eagles. Well, God, we're ready to soar." Like many, Tik Toker Incrediberry is dubious in a country where, in an election between Jesus and Satan with an "R" by his name, "Jesus would lose in a landslide." — (@) Still, they gathered for workshops titled The Bible Uncancelled, No Woke Warriors, God's Children Are Not For Sale, Bidenomics: Bad For America's Health, Would Moses Go to Harvard?, Putting Our Heads in the Gas Stove, Ramaswamy Unplugged, Going Full Hungarian: Stopping Georgey (sic) Soros, From Gaza to Greenwich Village: A Guide to Fighting Contemporary Jew-Hatred, and What You Talkin' Bout Fani Willis, presented by esteemed legal scholar and Black linguist Jim Jordan. He was also among a host of out-Trumping-Trump speakers - paranoid losers, zealots, liars, a "who’s who of who won’t accept the results of the election" with wildly unintelligible notions and short attention spans - to offer 20-minute rants about an amorphous, all-powerful "left" who control damn near everything, which is why they can't have nice things. "The left controls big media, big tech, big corporations, big sports, academia, Hollywood, the Senate and White House," he whined, before bravely adding, "But the left doesn’t control we the people." But we the people, it turns out, often make little sense. Lara Trump said Dems think "you can change your gender like you change your shoes, and that at night she and the other son lead their kids in saying their prayers and the Pledge of Allegiance. Elise Stefanik said Ivy League campuses are "dens of anti-Semitism" where "radical leftist rot (is) destroying the minds of the next generation." The Daily Wire's Michael Knowles, quoting Humpty Dumpty - "the question is which is to be master?" - said trans people reveal the decline of religion and marriage, which is "nothing other than a sign of God's love." "Liberals think they're God, but they can't really turn a couple of men, or a couple of women, or three men and a billy goat for that matter into a marriage." Former Trump something Monica Crowley warned patriots to beware an upcoming "CATFIGHT: Michelle v. Kamala" - it was a workshop - because "Democrats (are) communists, and communists always have a plan...The left has a host group of power brokers working with the deep state, which is real." Kristi Noem said right now "there are people who love America and there are those who hate America" and "Joe Biden is destroying America." Stephen Miller said Trump's legal cases "are proof big broad laws will be used to crush us." Kurt Schlichter said "Joe Biden is the capo of a criminal organization." The U.K.'s Liz Truss said "we need a bigger bazooka against the deep state" after Joe Biden helped destroy her 7-week reign; nobody knew who she was, but one guy thought her speech was "on the same parallel" as U.S. politics. El Salvador's Nayib Bukele, "the world's coolest dictator," who's detained 80,000 people in his.war on gangs, said he welcomes the fight against "dark forces" in America. And conspiracist Jack Posobiec said when liberals "say democracy, they mean authoritarianism." "Welcome to the end of democracy! We’re here to overthrow it completely," he crowed. "We didn’t get all the way there on Jan. 6, but we'll endeavor to get rid of it and replace it with this right here.” Going full clerical fascist, he clutched a cross. "Because all glory is not to government. All glory to God.” Meanwhile, an addled, bilious sociopath keeps jabbering. After telling a Black Conservative Gala his criming makes him just like them - “I got indicted and a lot of people said that's why the Black people like me" - he greeted CPAC with a tinny national anthem by Jan. 6 rioters before spewing a 90-minute, murderous word salad of fever-dream apocalypse and a "Judgment Day" that will be "my ultimate and absolute revenge." He said "millions of illegal aliens (are) stampeding across our border" from insane asylums like Hannibal Lecter speaking "languages that nobody in this country has ever heard of - it's a very horrible thing." He said "ruthless gangs will explode (into) the suburbs" and while "weaponized law enforcement hunts for conservatives and people of faith, Hamas and Antifa will terrorize our streets (with) their brutal iDEEEo-ology and it is brutal let me tell you" He said he's "a proud political dissident," Biden is "surrounded (by) very bad fascists," he flew into Iraq with "the best-looking human beings I've ever seen" and maybe a guy named "Raisin Cane," and "they'll say 'he rambled'" but "it's total genius." Sweet Jesus. Be afraid.

      • CODEPINK Renews Call for Diplomacy and Peace Talks on Second Anniversary of Ukraine War

        As the war in Ukraine marks its second tragic anniversary, CODEPINK stands firm in its belief that there is no military solution to a conflict provoked by US-backed NATO expansion. We oppose funding this proxy war and instead urge the United States government to prioritize peace talks and diplomatic efforts. We urge Congress to oppose an additional $61 billion towards prolonging the stalemate in Ukraine. We recognize the only winners will be the war profiteers; Raytheon, Northrop Gumman, Lockheed Martin, the weapons manufacturers. The costs of this war and all war is unsustainable. Even though the United States has already spent more than $113 billion over the past two years on weapons and assistance for Ukraine, Ukrainians are no closer to peace and stability than they were when Russia invaded in 2022. They are farther away now than in March 2022, when Russia and Ukraine were close to a neutrality agreement, which the United States and the UK sabotaged. The costly pursuit of a fictional military solution is not limited to dollars. The war has resulted in staggering human costs. Tragically, over 10,000 civilians, including over 560 children, have been killed as well as an estimated 500,000 soldiers. Beyond the horrific human cost is the cost to the environment and the global climate crisis. Homes and hospitals, transportation networks and farmland, energy and civilian nuclear facilities, drinking water and wastewater systems, chemical and steel plants, mining facilities, and vital seed banks have been destroyed or severely damaged, leading to environmental degradation that will last decades after the last shot is fired. The United States cannot continue to fund the spiral of death and destruction to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars, while millions of its citizens face homelessness, lack of healthcare, and unaffordable education. Insisting that Russia is our greatest threat instead of the climate crisis leaves the U.S. population defenseless in the face of the ever-increasing climate disasters that require global cooperation and demilitarization. Prolonging the war in Ukraine will not stabilize the region nor bring peace to Ukrainians; only peace talks and diplomacy can do that. Stop the weapons. Start the talks.Negotiations now - for people and the planet.

      • Never Surrender the Gold Lamé

        Fresh off his latest legal triumph - payment due of $355 million - and his yuge win in historians' annual presidential ranking - dead last as Worst. President. Ever. - the "greatest con artist in world history" has unveiled his latest trashy, loutish grift: $400, ugly-ass, gold-spray-painted "Never Surrender" high-top sneakers, "Bold, gold and tough, just like President (sic) Trump." And just like his steak, water, vodka, airline, deodorant, board game, casinos and mugshot mugs, he says, "I think it’s gonna be a big success."Lately, it's true, success has been scant for the one-time master of The Art of the (crooked) Deal. President's Day brought the glum news that, while political scholars ranked Abe Lincoln America's best leader - Obama was #7, Biden #14 - they again deemed the orange former president and current 91-count perp the worst president in America's history, by the biggest margin on the list: "It’s bad. Like, way behind James Buchanan bad." Days before, there was the stunning $355 million fine imposed by Judge Arthur Engeron in Trump's civil fraud trial - plus court-imposed interest of $100 million that will increase daily - bringing the total he owes to $542 million and counting. And Engeron didn't hold back: On chicanery and fraud "that shock the conscience," he offered a blistering "road map to Trump's thievery" as a "remorseless con artist" whose every act is "based on consistent and shameless cheating, deceiving, falsifying documents and lying" in order to "rip off everyone he can."Trump responded to yet another loss in court with his usual contrition and grace. Just kidding. Obviously, he raved. Engeron is a "CORRUPT AND MANY TIMES OVERTURNED ‘JUDGE.’" James is a "RADICAL LEFT SOROS BACKED SLOB OF AN ATTORNEY GENERAL." Once again, "NOTHING LIKE THIS HAS EVER HAPPENED IN OUR COUNTRY BEFORE," also, "THIS IS COMMUNISM." Because he's 12, it is "ALL POLITICAL PROSECUTIONS OF YOUR FAVORITE PRESIDENT, ME." In an especially depraved touch, he even managed to make Putin's political assassination of Navalny not about a murderous thug eradicating a man of courage and conscience, but about himself and being held to account for his petty crimes. "The sudden death of Alexei Navalny has made me more and more aware of what is happening in our Country," he jabbered. "It is a slow, steady progression... leading us down a path to destruction." At a Tuesday Fox town hall, he went full, oblivious slime: "It's a form of Navalny." Fucking cretin.In response, he's turned to what he's always turned to in a self-serving, small-minded life: grifting. And hawking his endless crap with pitches as tawdry as the soulless ghoul whose name it bears: "The world's greatest steaks," vodka that's "taken off like crazy," an airline that "had more people than anyone else," suits to "guarantee you're always board-room ready," mattresses, vitamins, casinos, shirts, ties, water, wine, candles, cookies, earrings, robes, blankets, speakers, pickleball paddles (on sale for $147.45!). There's Trump the Game - get "everything you ever wanted to own!" - Success and Empire deodorants - from reviews: "Smells like flop sweat, Adderall and cowardice," "There is nothing about this product I find acceptable," "No one loves Empire Deodorant more than me..We're going to have so many Empire Deodorants you're going to get sick of Empire Deodorant." It all crashed and burned. This year, he added digital trading cards - "the greatest trading cards in history" - pieces of a suit he wore to court - "it was a great suit" - and mugs saying "Never Surrender" with the mugshot from his surrender. — (@) Now there are sneakers. The day after Citizen Trump got that $355 million slap from Judge Engeron, he turned up at two events. One was a campaign rally in Michigan, where he bellowed to 2,000 supporters in a freezing plane hangar about "repulsive abuses of power" by miscreant judges and prosecutors - "crooked," "a lunatic," "an animal" - who are "set(ting) fire to our laws like no one has ever seen in this country before." The other was, incongruously, Sneaker Con, “The Greatest Sneaker Show on Earth," in (very blue) Philadelphia, where before an atypically young, diverse, weed-wafting crowd he launched his very own "official sneaker" - the hideous, cheesy, gold--sprayed "Never Surrender High-Tops," with flag and T, just $399. "I have some incredible people that work with me on things, and they came up with this," he said, clutching the garish monstrosities in his teeny hands as the crowd began booing. "This is something I’ve been talking about for 12 years, 13 years, and I think it’s gonna be a big success."Except for a red sole, and in keeping with his Richie-Rich Trump vision of wealth, his "incredible people" had slathered the entire shoe plus laces in gold spray, inevitably inviting jokes about golden showers, clown shoes and trippy Democratic competitors. "That's the real deal," he boasted of his blinding creation. Except for one shrieky MAGA hysteric - "We need him! He's a good man! "- sneakerheads were not impressed. Boos rose from the crowd, along with a wave of "Go Biden!" chants. “Wow, a lot of emotion, there’s a lot of emotion in this room! Thank you!," Trump burbled above the din. Then the old, desperate ploy: "The nice thing is...We have lines going around the block..They've never seen anything like it!" One observer: "A needier man has never existed." Other skeptics summoned visions of Four Seasons Total Landscaping and My Pillow Guy morphing into My Sneaker Guy. Michael Steele: "This is what it's come to." Charlie Pierce: "He's one step from selling counterfeit CDs from a card table on 2nd Avenue."The shouty GetTrumpSneakers website - "For the First Time Ever! Buy Now! Special Offer!" - warns they're "Super Limited!" so "with millions of fans, get these before they sell out!" "Join Trump's sneaker community!" it gushes about a tubby loser who's likely never worn a sneaker. "Be a part of history!" There are 1000 pairs, each is numbered, 10 will be autographed, limit 3 pairs per person, buy 2 or more for a (lousy) 5% off, "bonuses" include extra laces, an "exclusive Trump Superhero charm" (don't ask), a chance for 2 tickets to a launch party, date TBD, no guarantee the perp will attend. There are also low-top, "45"-bedecked sneakers in "T-Red” or “POTUS” white for $199. Also Victory47 perfume in a golden bottle with a Trump-head stopper for $99: "Our fragrances are curated to capture the essence of success and determination...symbolizing victory and strength." Or per wiseacres: "That sweet smell of guilty verdict and federal prison chow," also (diluted) turpentine, cat urine, bleach, but drink or inject? It's "a tribute to the Trump legacy, blending premium craftsmanship with a distinctive style...symbolizing leadership and patriotism." Just one glitch: The sneakers evidently don't exist. The FAQs tell the tale. Shipping dates are 5 and 6 months away; the response to, "Why such a long lead time?" is that they're "made to order." Scammers gonna scam: They also haven't been made, though they'll be coming any day like the health, infrastructure, immigration etc plans. To the query, "Will I be getting the exact sneaker on the site?" comes, "The images shown are for illustration purposes only...WE MAKE NO WARRANTIES (sic) IN RELATION TO THE ACCURACY OF ANY INFORMATION ON THE WEBSITE." So, you might get, like, a Trump steak or Empire deodorant stick instead? Hey, if you're lucky you'll get this fabulous Trump Doll Collection with the whole family: Melania, who came from a Ukrainian website, Don Jr., "my other son," and two anatomically correct Ivankas, "a personal fantasy of mine, actually." Act now, this offer is going fast. — (@) Likewise suspiciously, less than a day after his gold-spray-painted grotesqueries appeared, the website announced they were "SOLD OUT!" Theories abound. A single, foreign entity - starts with R, ends with a, symbolized by a bear? - "bought" them all in an illegal cash transfer to Trump in exchange for stolen U.S. military secrets. The too-reasonable price is only for the right sneakers; the left were in a container ship shot up by the Houthis, were pushed overboard, washed ashore and are being sold on Craig's List in Yemen. The sneakers that don't yet exist will be made in Ivanka's Chinese sweat shops for $4.50 a pair, to then surface online for insane prices. (Wait, that's already happened: At the launch some imbecile paid $9,000 for a pair, and several pairs are on sale or have sold on eBay for up to $7,500.) Or the whole scheme is already a wash because French designer Christian Louboutin, who has trademarked red-soled shoes and won several lawsuits on the issue, represents one courtroom too far.Given Trump's sketchy legal and financial history, the last option seems plausible. He's had at least 15 failed businesses, apart from a failed presidency, and been involved in over 4,000 related legal cases in federal and state courts. He's been a crook most or all of his life, with associations to prove it: Over the years, his "crime-infested" Trump Tower has been shady home to a long list of felons, fraudsters, money launderers, tax evaders and Russian mobsters. Just recently, over a dozen of his lawyers have quit, abandoning his bourgeoning legal quagmires. A narcissistic asshole who's never been held to account, he's also had a running cease-and-desist battle with over a dozen artists whose music he regularly, heedlessly rips off; they've blasted his "craven political purposes," told him, "Fuck you. Stop playing my song," and called him "the anti-Christ." His crappy high-tops will presumably suffer the low-life fate of all his other shoddy ventures, whether before or after his 91 felonies do him in. — (@) Above all, regardless of legality, is the crude, dumpster-fire vulgarity of it Behold, a sort-of former president and current OMFG presidential contender peddling bootleg, cheapjack, "fashion-mangled" off-whites "designed with all the crayons and colored sharpies he didn’t eat or stick up his nose." It's beyond unseemly, even for him. "I've seen many, many tasteless things in my nearly 64 years on Earth, but as God is my witness those shoes are the absolute most tacky items I’ve ever seen," writes one horrified patriot. "It’s as though all that Trump is has been boiled down and molded into sneaker form." Another suggests they look like "Trump's arrogance in shoe form," the "kind of sneaker you’d expect from a man who created a fake university named after himself and had to pay $25 million to settle lawsuits accusing him of fraud. They’re the go-to athletic shoe for people fleeing responsibility." Or, per the kitschy, tatty Trump brand, "cheap and ugly,...and very, very dumb."To be fair, Never-Surrenders have their fans. "Perfect to distract my Labrador from destroying my 5th pair of Birkenstocks!" says one. Also, flat bottom is "perfect for slowly walking down ramps!" And okay for Halloween clown get-up if they're in K-Mart $4.99 bin. Others suggest Trump should stick with Nazi jack-boots, or get $14.98 high-tops at Wal-Mart, $5.98 Rustoleum gold spray paint and $1.99 little flag thingies and call it a day. There were questions: Do they come with a built-in ankle monitor? Do they cause or fix bone spurs? Can you say 'child labor'? Will he ever run out of stupid shit to slap his worthless name on? And "who in the time-altered universe is going to WEAR these monstrosities? I mean, LOOK AT THEM!!!!!!" Most vitally, "People should see what a hollow figure he is. Evil, traitorous, immoral, yes. But ultimately a sad little man." And, "Someday he’ll be scratching his brand name onto his cell wall painstakingly with a toothbrush. Then he’ll realize he forgot a letter and have to scratch it out and start over again. He’ll have time."

      Labor Notes

      • CIO’s History Inspires Podcasts

        A new podcast, "Organize the Unorganized: The Rise of the CIO," tells the story of the Committee for Industrial Organization (which later became the Congress of Industrial Organizations) and organized millions of workers in the 1930s and '40s. “If we're looking to get millions of workers into the labor movement and keep them there, there's really one time in American history to look to, and that's the CIO moment,” said Benjamin Fong, who created and hosts the podcast.

      Next City

        The World – PRI

        • 'War of drones': Ukrainians step up drone production in fight against Russia

          It’s been nearly two years since Russia began its full-scale invasion of Ukraine. With military aid held up in the US Congress, there are widespread reports that Ukraine is beginning to ration its ammunition. Drone manufacturing is one way Ukrainians are trying to become more self-reliant as the war continues. The World’s Daniel Ofman reports from Kyiv.

        • Out of Eden Walk: Djibouti and the Red Sea

          In early 2013, National Geographic Explorer Paul Salopek began an epic walk, following the path of the first human migration out of Africa about 60,000 years ago. Host Carol Hills speaks with Salopek — now two-thirds through his global journey — about his experience walking through Djibouti and sailing through the Bab al-Mandeb Strait, the entrance to the Red Sea.

        • What options does the US have following Navalny's death?

          President Joe Biden warned Russia in 2021 that it would face “devastating” consequences if opposition leader Alexei Navalny were to die in prison. On Friday, the White House announced more than 500 new sanctions on Russia. The World’s host Marco Werman speaks with Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland about Washington’s other options.

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            • Wells Fargo and PNC Bank Windows Smashed in ‘Stop Cop City’ Demo

              Tucson, AZ – A Sunday night march through downtown Tucson in solidarity with the Stop Cop City movement ended with windows smashed at two downtown banks — a Wells Fargo and a PNC Bank. The proposed paramilitary police urban warfare school in Atlanta has drawn… The post Wells Fargo and PNC Bank Windows Smashed in ‘Stop Cop City’ Demo appeared first on UNICORN RIOT.


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