Patterico's Pontifications


BREAKING: Michael Reinoehl Killed in Shootout with Authorities

Filed under: General — JVW @ 8:56 pm

[guest post by JVW]

The New York Times reports:

A man being investigated in the fatal shooting of a right-wing activist who was part of a pro-Trump caravan in Portland, Ore., was killed on Thursday night when authorities moved to arrest him, according to three law enforcement officials familiar with the investigation.

The officials said the suspect, Michael Forest Reinoehl, 48, was killed during the encounter in Lacey, Wash., southwest of Seattle, when a federal fugitive task force moved to apprehend him.

An arrest warrant had been issued by the Portland police earlier Thursday, on the same day that Vice News published an interview with Mr. Reinoehl in which he appeared to admit to the shooting, saying, “I had no choice.”

The Portland police had been investigating Saturday’s shooting death of Aaron J. Danielson, one of the supporters of President Trump who came into downtown Portland and clashed with protesters demonstrating against racial injustice and police brutality.

I guess that puts a real kink in the argument that he acted in self-defense or otherwise had no choice.


Trump Thinks Soldiers Who Were Killed or Injured in Battle Are “Losers” or “Suckers”

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 6:35 pm

I mean, we know this from what he said in public about John McCain, in front of God and everybody. Nevertheless, pathetic low-life sycophants who deserve our contempt will try to defend him, because such people always do.

Jeffrey Goldberg in The Atlantic:

When President Donald Trump canceled a visit to the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery near Paris in 2018, he blamed rain for the last-minute decision, saying that “the helicopter couldn’t fly” and that the Secret Service wouldn’t drive him there. Neither claim was true.

Trump rejected the idea of the visit because he feared his hair would become disheveled in the rain, and because he did not believe it important to honor American war dead, according to four people with firsthand knowledge of the discussion that day. In a conversation with senior staff members on the morning of the scheduled visit, Trump said, “Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers.” In a separate conversation on the same trip, Trump referred to the more than 1,800 marines who lost their lives at Belleau Wood as “suckers” for getting killed.

. . . .

Trump has been, for the duration of his presidency, fixated on staging military parades, but only of a certain sort. In a 2018 White House planning meeting for such an event, Trump asked his staff not to include wounded veterans, on grounds that spectators would feel uncomfortable in the presence of amputees. “Nobody wants to see that,” he said.

The whole thing makes for compelling reading. It rings true; it sounds like things he has said in public; I don’t care what his defenders say about it. He is beneath contempt, and so is each and every person who tries to defend him.

Washington Post: Only Landslide For Biden Can Save Us In November…Or Something Like That

Filed under: General — Dana @ 4:58 pm

[guest post by Dana]

You might be interested in reading the Washington Post preparing Americans for a Trump win based on four imagined scenarios. Long story short: Only a Biden landslide will save the Republic from violence and a constitutional crisis:

We wanted to know: What’s the worst thing that could happen to our country during the presidential election? President Trump has broken countless norms and ignored countless laws during his time in office, and while my colleagues and I at the Transition Integrity Project didn’t want to lie awake at night contemplating the ways the American experiment could fail, we realized that identifying the most serious risks to our democracy might be the best way to avert a November disaster. So we built a series of war games, sought out some of the most accomplished Republicans, Democrats, civil servants, media experts, pollsters and strategists around, and asked them to imagine what they’d do in a range of election and transition scenarios.

A landslide for Joe Biden resulted in a relatively orderly transfer of power. Every other scenario we looked at involved street-level violence and political crisis.

Here is a look at what they predict will happen apart from a bigly Biden win:

With the exception of the “big Biden win” scenario, each of our exercises reached the brink of catastrophe, with massive disinformation campaigns, violence in the streets and a constitutional impasse. In two scenarios (“Trump win” and “extended uncertainty”) there was still no agreement on the winner by Inauguration Day, and no consensus on which candidate should be assumed to have the ability to issue binding commands to the military or receive the nuclear codes. In the “narrow Biden win” scenario, Trump refused to leave office and was ultimately escorted out by the Secret Service — but only after pardoning himself and his family and burning incriminating documents.

You can read the details of the four scenarios at the link.

Given that I’m not voting for either candidate, I’m not too moved one way or the other by the scenarios. They contain both the ridiculous and the not so unreasonable, the biased, and the preferred. I’m just left wondering for the hundredth time, why the two major political parties decided that America must choose between two rich old white guys – one with questionable mental faculties, and one proven to lack a functioning moral compass – to lead the most powerful nation on earth. America really shouldn’t accept these conditions. America should *want* better than this. Oh, and screw the binary choice trope.


UPDATE BY PATTERICO: I have not read the piece, but frankly, I have been mulling over on my own the thought that we are headed for violence unless (and perhaps even if) Biden wins in a landslide. (“Even if” depends upon the extent to which indignant and armed Trumpers are willing to blind themselves to reality — and if history is any guide, they are really, really good at that.) My concern is at the point where I am considering casting a vote for Biden simply to make the margin of victory in the popular vote even more decisive. (It’s heightened by the certainty that some Trump fans will follow his directive to commit voter fraud and vote twice.) Given that my vote doesn’t matter in California anyway, using it to try to contribute to the avoidance of violence seems like as good a use of that right as any other. To be sure, taking such a position publicly might hurt my status in the eyes of … well, in the eyes of people who already despise me anyway. What exactly do I have to lose, other than the chance to watch the country burn?

Trump’s CDC Issues Order Preventing Evictions, Citing COVID

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:29 am

If this policy had been announced by Barack Obama (or Joe Biden) patriots all over the land would be talking about grabbing their guns and marching on Washington. But since it’s Trump, I guess it’s OK:

The Trump administration is again pushing the envelope of its executive authority by issuing a new blanket eviction moratorium that applies to all rental properties nationwide. The order, published Tuesday, is a dramatic expansion of the now-expired eviction moratorium passed by Congress in March, and could potentially impose heavy criminal penalties on landlords for attempting to remove non-paying tenants from their properties.

According to the order advanced by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) yesterday, tenants earning up to $99,000 ($198,000 for joint filers) cannot be evicted for not paying their rent provided they tell their landlord in writing that they’ve made all efforts to obtain government assistance, have lost income or received extraordinary out-of-pocket medical bills, and that their eviction would force them into homelessness or into a crowded living situation.

. . . .

The CDC order goes far beyond the federal eviction mortarium passed as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act in March. That congressionally authorized policy only covered the 28 percent of multifamily residential units with a federally backed mortgage. It expired at the end of July.

This is the kind of thing legislatures do, not presidents, and there is good reason for that because legislatures better weigh conflicting interests and tend to take action in a less blunderbuss fashion. Even when legislatures do it, actions like this always carry unintended consequences, since landlords still have to make mortgage payments. This pulls the rug out from under landlords who are, all over the country, in the middle of negotiations with their tenants who can’t pay, attempting to persuade them to make partial payments so the mortgage can be covered. Landlords will now be even more reluctant to rent to people with poor credit and will likely require even greater guarantees in advance in the form of rental payments or increased security deposits. Homelessness will likely increase, not decrease. It’s socialistic and it’s autocratic and it’s bad policy.

Also, the justification offered here (the spread of COVID) is wafer-thin. It’s probably a violation of the Constitution’s Takings Clause and it’s unlikely to withstand court scrutiny — and make no mistake, that’s coming, because landlords have associations and the associations have lawyers.

By the way, tenants are still on the hook for the rent; it’s not forgiven but the consequences for non-payment are deferred until January, kind of like Trump’s payroll tax holiday for federal workers. Trump has pulled the pin on a couple of grenades that are not set to explode until after Biden is elected (assuming he is). The chaos that will ensue is mind-boggling.

None of that matters to Donald Trump. There are more renters than landlords, and this is nothing but a naked grab for votes by someone who can read the polls, even if he doesn’t read anything else that is not a short document wholly about him. No wonder he’s bragging about it.

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