🎈 ~ Things I've Learned This Week ~ 🎈

• The Boy Scouts of America had to formally apologize for the behavior of one of their guests: The President of the United States. A first in the history of the organization. Just let that roll around inside your head for a minute.
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• Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the replacement for the recently departed and now lamented Sean Spicer, presented a hand written letter purportedly scribed by a nine year old boy named Dylan, but goes by the name of "Pickles." Dylan remains anonymous. And the letter itself appeared to be written by someone in their twenties feigning how a developmentally disabled nine year old might write. The White House press room was uh ... unconvinced. It has since been revealed that VP Mike Pence has a cat named Pickles.
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• Trump wakes up, grabs his iPhone, and tweets his latest dig at Barack Obama's legacy: No more transgender Americans will be accepted in the US Armed Forces. He didn't bother to inform anyone about this in advance, not even his SecDef. He just did it. It evolved from: Brain fart > tweet > Pentagon bewilderment > outrage > Chairman of Joint Chiefs saying > ignore this deranged fool > status quo. Or as it's known during the era of Trump, just another day.
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• Sen. Lisa Mirkowski of Alaska didn't vote per the White House's agenda, so the administration literally threatened to take it out on the people of her state. Get in line, and you'll get a lollipop. Wander off, and energy, infrastructure, job programs will be denied to the citizens of your state. This is exactly how the Mafia works.
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• And speaking of the Mafia, Trump brought his new muscle to the White House, in the form of Anthony Scaramucci. Less than one week in, and moms and dads across the country have been adjusting the language settings on their televisions. Scaramucci was given explicit orders from The Don; shake things up. Pit my people against one-another. Put everything you've got into hitting my Chief of Staff, Reince Priebus. Scaramucci's tweets and subsequent interview with (I believe) the New Yorker were raunchy enough to embarrass a longshoreman. Reaction for them moral values voters and Evangelicals who brought Trump to power? Crickets. We're good.
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• Three Republican Senators, Sasse of Nebraska, Grassley of Iowa and Graham of South Carolina, all told the president that any attempt to fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller will result in a revolt within his own party. There's legislation being drafted today to strengthen oversight between the Oval Office's authority and the Trump/Russia investigation... by a Republican!
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• And speaking of Trump/Russia... while all of the above has been exploding, Bob Mueller rolls along. Like a steamroller with one speed (and the biggest muffler EVER), he and his team plod along in total silence, interviewing, subpoenaing and investigating. The difference this week, is they now have the full endorsement of several Senators who were until recently, too timid to speak out. That has changed.
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• The bill to sanction Russia for their ongoing meddling in American policy passed the Senate by a vote of 98 to 2, setting the stage for a presidential quandary. "What should I do now? And how will I explain this to my boss, Vlad?" Oh, the humanity! Putin promises to retaliate. As Rachel Maddow says: Watch this space.
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• Did somebody mention Rachel Maddow? Huuuuge kudos to her, to Chris Hayes and to Lawrence O'Donnell! For the first time ever, they've taken MSNBC across the ratings line for an entire week. First place, supplanting Fox News. Gosh, could it be that after 6 months of off-the-charts incompetence and corruption, there's a wave of buyer's remorse going on? And some former Trump supporters want to hear the news unfiltered through Sean Hannity's ass for a change? Let's hope.
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• And then IT happened. After some 81 attempts to destroy Barack Obama's signature legislation; ObamaCare, literally tens of thousands of man-hours, millions of tax-payer's dollars wasted, the Senate said NO. The current President, whose number one campaign promise was to "repeal and replace ObamaCare," took to Twitter and blamed it on everyone but his own failed leadership.
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• Finally—and not a moment too soon—John McCain earned his moniker. The #Maverick stepped up to the plate this morning, and reminded us... including those of us who had our doubts, that he DOES have the courage of his convictions. It was his vote this morning that scuttled McConnell's bill. McCain's epitaph will have many pluses and minuses, but this one... THIS ONE will be the vote that will outlive us all. And he did it with full knowledge that his party leadership bristled as he did it. If there was ever any doubt about his heroism before, there isn't this morning.

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