Thursday, July 20, 2017

Jeff Sessions Won't Resign

I've been ignoring the "breaking" New York Times coverage on Trump's Russia ties, including the big story that went live last night and was trending this morning, "In Interview, Trump Expresses Anger at Sessions and Comey, and Warns Mueller." (Safe link.)

Still, the news had some impact.

Here's this, at Politico, "Sessions won't resign for now, but gets Trump's message":
The president's decision to criticize his attorney general to the New York Times was intended to communicate his lingering fury over Sessions' recusal from the Russia probes, said people close to the president.

President Donald Trump’s broadside against Attorney General Jeff Sessions in a New York Times interview this week was no careless accident or slip of the tongue.

Instead, the president was sending a message, said a Trump adviser who talked with him after the interview — making a deliberate effort to convey his lingering displeasure with his attorney general, who recused himself in March from the federal investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election.

“He didn’t just do that randomly,” the adviser said of the president. “There was a certain thinking behind it.”

Precisely what Trump expected Sessions to do in response remains unclear. Sessions said Thursday that he intends to remain in his position for the time being. “I plan to continue to do so as long as that is appropriate,” Sessions said at a Department of Justice news conference. “We’re serving right now. What we’re doing today is the kind of work that we intend to continue.”

One person close to Sessions said he has no interest in resigning, although he previously offered to do so in late May, following several outbursts by Trump over his recusal.

While the resignation attempt was previously reported, this person told POLITICO that Trump had demanded that Sessions submit a resignation letter. By the time Sessions did so the following day, Trump had cooled down and rejected the offer.

A spokeswoman for the attorney general and the White House did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the episode.

In the interview Wednesday with the Times, Trump suggested he would have picked someone else to run the Justice Department had he known Sessions was going to remove himself from oversight of the Russia probe, which has expanded to include contacts between Kremlin-connected operatives and Trump aides and family members...

Jackie Johnson's Very Warm Forecast

Except for a bagel run, I was inside all day today. I walked five miles yesterday, though. I might do that again tomorrow or Saturday.

In any case, here's the lovely, sparkling Ms. Jackie. She's so full of life's happiness, filling out a little with the baby weight from her pregnancy.


At CBS News 2 Los Angeles:

Ian Kershaw, Hitler

Following up from earlier, "Allan Bullock, Hitler: A Study in Tyranny."

Here's Ian Kershaw, Hitler: 1889-1936 Hubris, and Hitler: 1936-1945 Nemesis.

As noted a couple of times, I'm waiting for Volker Ullrich's new biography to be out in paperback. See, at Amazon, Hitler: Ascent, 1889-1939.

Deals in Television, Audio, and Accessories

At Amazon, Save on TV, Video, Audio.

BONUS: James D. Hornfischer, Neptune's Inferno: The U.S. Navy at Guadalcanal.

Annika Mombauer, The Origins of the First World War


At Amazon, Annika Mombauer, The Origins of the First World War: Controversies and Consensus.

Antonia Okafor: How I Became Racist, Sexist, Mysogynist (VIDEO)

These Prager University videos are getting better all the time.

This one is fantastic!

I'm only vaguely familiar with Antonia Okafor, but she is a smokin' patriot!

Danica Patrick on Singer Island (VIDEO)

She's lovely.

At Sports Illustrated Swimwuit:

Shelley Baranowski, Nazi Empire

This looks interesting, especially going from Bismarck until the end of World War II.

At Amazon, Shelley Baranowski, Nazi Empire: German Colonialism and Imperialism from Bismarck to Hitler.

Fritz Fischer, Germany's Aims in the First World War


My copy came today yesterday Thursday last week a while ago, via Amazon, Fritz Fischer, Germany's Aims in the First World War.

Victoria's Secret Model Martha Hunt

At London's Daily Mail, "White hot! Martha Hunt sizzles as she flaunts her fabulous figure in skimpy bikini on the beach as she poses for Victoria's Secret photo shoot," and "Fighting fit! Martha Hunt shows off her martial arts prowess with an impressive kick on stunning Victoria's Secret photoshoot at Coney Island."

Also, at Drunken Stepfather, "MARTHA HUNT’S ON SET PANTY FLASH OF THE DAY."

Andrew Hartman, War for the Soul of America

Following-up from my previous entry, "Patrick J. Buchanan, The Death of the West: How Dying Populations and Immigrant Invasions Imperil Our Country and Civilization."

I've been meaning to pick up a copy of this book for the longest time.

See Andrew Hartman, A War for the Soul of America: A History of the Culture Wars.
When Patrick Buchanan took the stage at the Republican National Convention in 1992 and proclaimed, “There is a religious war going on for the soul of our country,” his audience knew what he was talking about: the culture wars, which had raged throughout the previous decade and would continue until the century’s end, pitting conservative and religious Americans against their liberal, secular fellow citizens. It was an era marked by polarization and posturing fueled by deep-rooted anger and insecurity.

Buchanan’s fiery speech marked a high point in the culture wars, but as Andrew Hartman shows in this richly analytical history, their roots lay farther back, in the tumult of the 1960s—and their significance is much greater than generally assumed. Far more than a mere sideshow or shouting match, the culture wars, Hartman argues, were the very public face of America’s struggle over the unprecedented social changes of the period, as the cluster of social norms that had long governed American life began to give way to a new openness to different ideas, identities, and articulations of what it meant to be an American. The hot-button issues like abortion, affirmative action, art, censorship, feminism, and homosexuality that dominated politics in the period were symptoms of the larger struggle, as conservative Americans slowly began to acknowledge—if initially through rejection—many fundamental transformations of American life.

As an ever-more partisan but also an ever-more diverse and accepting America continues to find its way in a changing world, A War for the Soul of America reminds us of how we got here, and what all the shouting has really been about.

Patrick J. Buchanan, The Death of the West

Old Pat was decades ahead of his time, lol.

This book came out 15 years ago, but looks more prescient today than ever.

At Amazon, Patrick J. Buchanan, The Death of the West: How Dying Populations and Immigrant Invasions Imperil Our Country and Civilization.

Michelle Malkin, Who Built That

Following-up, "Manufacturing Hate for 'Made in America'."

Michelle knows whereof she speaks.

Check out her book, at Amazon, Michelle Malkin, Who Built That: Awe-Inspiring Stories of American Tinkerpreneurs.

Michelle Makin photo 516OdNgljdL_zpsyp2wcemg.jpg

Manufacturing Hate for 'Made in America'

From Michelle Malkin:
It’s “Made In America” week in Washington, D.C. You’d think this would be cause for bipartisan celebration. Who could be against highlighting the ingenuity, self-reliance and success of our nation’s homegrown entrepreneurs and manufacturers?

Enter Bill Kristol.

The entrenched Beltway pundit ridiculed a festive kickoff event on Monday at the White House, where President Donald Trump hosted companies from all 50 states to showcased their American-made products.

“Maybe it’s just me,” killjoy Kristol tweeted, “but I find something off-putting about turning the White House into an exhibition hall for American tchotchkes.” (That’s the Yiddish word for useless trinkets).


Tell that to the engineers at Hytrol, the Arkansas-based conveyor manufacturer that brought a mechanical display of its technology to the State Dining Room. Hytrol’s late founder, Tom Loberg, started out as a gopher at an electronics parts factory during the Great Depression, worked his way up to designing Navy turbines, hydraulic pumps and cylinders, and entered the conveyor belt business after perfecting bag-transporting machinery for seed, grain and tobacco farmers.

Hytrol’s state-of-the-art products are now used by companies ranging from to Office Depot to leading pharmaceutical, retail, food and publishing conglomerates around the world. A pioneer in the materials handling industry, Hytrol employs 1,300 high-skilled workers and will rake in revenues of more than $200 million this year alone.


Tell that to the employees of Wisconsin’s Pierce Manufacturing, which displayed one of its 30,000 custom-built fire trucks on the White House front lawn. Pierce started out as an auto body shop operating out of a converted church and now boasts a 2,000-person workforce. The company produces the iconic aerial tillers, pumpers, tankers and rescue trucks driven by first responders across the country every day.


Tell that to Iowa-based RMA Armament’s founder Blake Waldrop, a former Marine and police officer, who was inspired to manufacture stronger body armor after losing a comrade in Iraq to an IED attack. His ceramic plates, also featured at the “Made in America” event on Monday, have been purchased by police departments in Baltimore, Los Angeles and Waterloo, Iowa. Waldrop is working on partnerships to bring his products to the U.S. military and overseas.

“I always tell people I didn’t invent armor any more than Steve Jobs invented the computer,” Waldrop told the Des Moines Register earlier this year. “I just found a better way to do it, just like he did.”


Delaware’s ILC Dover participated in President Trump’s “Made in America” exhibition, too. Its trademark trifling bauble? The space suit worn by every U.S. astronaut since Project Apollo. Prolific inventor-turned-industrialist Abram Spanel, a Russian-born son of Jewish garment workers, spun off the company from his giant latex conglomerate that manufactured everything from girdles and swimwear to canteens and lifeboats.

ILC Dover produced high-pressure suits and helmets for the Air Force before winning a contract to design suits for NASA. In addition to displaying spacesuits used on the Space Shuttle and International Space Station programs, the company brought to the White House its DoverPac Flexible Isolator System used by pharmaceutical companies in their manufacturing processes; its Sentinel respirator used in the health care industry; and its SCape escape respirator used to protect U.S. government officials around the world from carbon monoxide, chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear contaminants.

It’s a crying shame D.C. is infested with effete talking heads whose only successfully manufactured product is condescending hostility toward the real movers and shakers in America. Patriotism is gauche and “off-putting” to incurable Trump-bashers like Bill Kristol, who supported Hillary Clinton and her foreign-subsidized pay-to-play cash machine over Donald Trump’s unapologetic nationalism.

Could Trump and his family’s own companies do better in hiring American and manufacturing in America? Sure.

Could the White House be doing more to freeze foreign worker visas at both ends of the wage scale and truly put A
merican workers first? Undeniably.

But to nastily deride the makers and job creators proudly showing off their wares in the nation’s capital at the invitation of our commander in chief takes a special level of anti-Trump lunacy and arrogance...

Allan Bullock, Hitler

I found this while out shopping.

I love the little pocket paperback books, especially of the classics. They're so easy to carry around and light in your hands.

Also at Amazon, Allan Bullock, Hitler: A Study in Tyranny.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

ICYMI: MacKinlay Kantor, Andersonville

At Amazon, MacKinlay Kantor, Andersonville.

William Manchester, The Arms of Krupp

At Amazon, William Manchester, The Arms of Krupp: The Rise and Fall of the Industrial Dynasty That Armed Germany at War.

Literally Unhinged Mother in Paterson, New Jersey, Arrested After Smashing Car Windows with Children Inside (VIDEO)

I'm watching the video, on Twitter, thinking wtf?!! I would've been out of that car in a second smashing that crazy woman with anything I could get my hands on!

She's literally about to kill someone, dang.

Turns out it was a domestic dispute, and the children's father, who was inside as well, called the police.

At the Bergen County Record, "Paterson mom charged with taking hammer to car with kids inside."

'Dunkirk' – Christopher Nolan's Best Film So Far (VIDEO)

The "Dunkirk" world premiere was July 13th, at Odeon Leicester Square in London. The film opens to general release in both Britain and the U.S. on Friday. I've been eagerly waiting for this flick since I first saw snippets over a year ago. As readers know, these big historical World War II epics are my favorite. And apparently, this one does not disappoint.

There'll be more movie reviews out over the next few days, but I saw this very impressive one at the Guardian (of all places) a couple of nights ago.

See, "Dunkirk review – Christopher Nolan's apocalyptic war epic is his best film so far":

Britain’s great pyrrhic defeat or inverse victory of 1940 has been brought to the screen as a terrifying, shattering spectacle by Christopher Nolan. He plunges you into the chaotic evacuation of the British Expeditionary Force from northern France after the catastrophic battle of Dunkirk – helped by the now legendary flotilla of small civilian craft. It is part disaster movie, part compressed war epic, and all horribly appropriate for these Brexit times.

Nolan’s Dunkirk has that kind of blazing big-screen certainty that I last saw in James Cameron’s Titanic or Paul Greengrass’s United 93. It is very different to his previous feature, the bafflingly overhyped sci-fi convolution Interstellar. This is a powerful, superbly crafted film with a story to tell, avoiding war porn in favour of something desolate and apocalyptic, a beachscape of shame, littered with soldiers zombified with defeat, a grimly male world with hardly any women on screen.

It is Nolan’s best film so far. It also has Hans Zimmer’s best musical score: an eerie, keening, groaning accompaniment to a nightmare, switching finally to quasi-Elgar variations for the deliverance itself. Zimmer creates a continuous pantonal lament, which imitates the dive bomber scream and queasy turning of the tides, and it works in counterpoint to the deafening artillery and machine-gun fire that pretty much took the fillings out of my teeth and sent them in a shrapnel fusillade all over the cinema auditorium...
Keep reading.

Elite Model Fashion Model Ronja Furrer

She's on Instagram.

And at Drunken Stepfather, "RONJA FURRER IS SOME MODEL OF THE DAY."

More here, "Ronja Furrer is a Beach Bombshell for Harper’s Bazaar Czech":
Ronja Furrer turns up the heat in the August 2017 issue of Harper’s Bazaar Czech. Photographed by Andreas Ortner, the brunette poses in sexy swimsuit looks for the fashion editorial. Stylist Hannah Goddes chooses one-piece styles and bikinis for Ronja to wear at Germany’s Sylt beach. The model wears designs from the likes of Triangl, La Perla and Calvin Klein.

Arrived Yesterday: Omar El Akkad, American War

Okay, I started reading this yesterday and it's good.

At Amazon, Omar El Akkad, American War.

I'm not making any big recommendations yet. Let me finish the whole thing and put it in context. I will note that I bought a used copy through Amazon (even less expensive), and the previous owner was a member of the Book of the Month Club, heh. Seems weird the club's still going. The L.A. Times wrote about it last year, "It's not your grandma's Book of the Month Club."

In any case, thanks for shopping through my Amazon links. I'm going to try to read for a while before I get sucked back into the time maw of blogging and social media, lol.

 photo 20245606_10214085219227503_2719715670614879757_n_zpsr3tsqplr.jpg

Angela Nagle, Kill All Normies


Here's something new and interesting.

At Amazon, Angela Nagle, Kill All Normies: Online Culture Wars From 4Chan and Tumblr to Trump and the Alt-Right.

Richard Overy, The Twilight Years


At Amazon, Richard Overy, The Twilight Years: The Paradox of Britain Between the Wars.

Michael Burleigh and Wolfgang Wippermann, The Racial State


At Amazon, Michael Burleigh and Wolfgang Wippermann, The Racial State: Germany 1933-1945.

Book Review: Sharyl Attkisson, The Smear

At Black Five, "Sharyl Attkisson, The Smear."

And at Amazon, The Smear: How Shady Political Operatives and Fake News Control What You See, What You Think, and How You Vote.

 photo y648_zpsxgsnafip.png

The 'Intersectionality' Trap

From Noah Rothman, at Commentary Magazine (via RCP):

Republicans didn’t always scoff dismissively at the self-destructive, reactionary, fractious collection of malcontents who call themselves The Resistance. The hundreds of thousands who marched in the streets following Donald Trump’s election once honestly unnerved the GOP. This grassroots energy culminated in January’s Women’s March, a multi-day event in which nearly two million people mobilized peacefully and, most importantly, sympathetically in opposition to the president. It was the perfect antidote to the violent anti-Trump demonstrations that typified Inauguration Day, and it might have formed the nucleus of a politically potent movement. The fall of the Women’s March exposes the blight weakening the left and crippling the Democratic Party.

The fever sapping Trump’s opposition was evident in microcosm on Monday in the meltdown of the Women’s March’s social-media presence on Twitter. “Happy birthday to the revolutionary #AssataShakur,” the organization wrote, dedicating the day’s resistance-related activities in her “honor.” Shakur is perhaps better known as Joanne Chesimard, the name that appeared on the court documents in connection with her being tried and convicted of eight felonies, including the execution-style murder of a New Jersey State Trooper. She currently resides in communist Cuba, a fugitive from American justice.

The outrage that followed the Women’s March’s endorsement of a cop-killer, exile, and unrepentant black nationalist was such that the organization was compelled to explain itself. “[T]his is not to say that #AssataShakur has never committed a crime, and not to endorse all of her actions,” the group flailed. “We say this to demonstrate the ongoing history of government [and] right-wing attempts to criminalize and discredit political activists.” This fanatical display of befuddlement perfectly encapsulates the logic of “intersectionality.” It demonstrates why this vogue ideology shackles its devotees to doomed causes and sinking ships.

“Intersectionality,” the beast born in liberal hothouses on college campuses, slouches now toward the halls of power. It is a Marxist notion that all discrimination is linked because it is rooted in the unjust power structures that facilitate inequality. Therefore, there are no distinct struggles against prejudice. Class, race, gender, sexual identity; these and other signifiers are bound together by the fact that oppression is institutional and systemic. The problem with this ideology is it compels its adherents to abandon discretion. To sacrifice anyone with a claim to oppression is to forsake every victim of prejudice. So, sure, Assata Shakur robbed, assaulted, incited violence, and killed a cop. But she also hates capitalism and white supremacy. Therefore, she’s one of us.

It is this logic that has rendered the “Sister Souljah moment” a relic of the past, and The Resistance is drowning in Sister Souljahs.

One of the March organizers, Linda Sarsour, has enjoyed newfound popularity and legitimacy in the age of Trump...
Keep reading.

Also at Twitchy, "Some big names in politics, media wondering who’ll condemn Women’s March’s praise of Assata Shakur; Updated."

Comic Book Retailers Sour on Comic-Con

I've never been.

This is interesting, though.

At LAT, "At Comic-Con, a major comics seller defects while new Hollywood stars arrive to dazzle fans":
Wielding sharpies, foam swords and protective tubes to guard the exclusive treasures they hope to find, more than a hundred thousand pop culture and comics aficionados are about to descend on the city of San Diego for Comic-Con International, the annual gathering for all things geek.

But for some longtime fans and retailers, a tipping point has been reached in the profitable but uneasy alliance between the comic-book world and Hollywood.

For the first time in 44 years, retailer Mile High Comics will be skipping the convention. Considered the country’s largest comic-book dealer, Mile High regularly brought 100,000 comics to sell on the convention hall floor.

“San Diego has grown far beyond its original premise,” wrote Chuck Rozanski, founder and president of the Colorado-based Mile High Comics, on the retailer’s website, “morphing from what was originally a wonderful annual gathering of the comics world, into a world-renowned pop culture and media festival.”

It’s no secret that Comic-Con went Hollywood years ago, but with each new convention it’s harder for independent comics retailers to make an impression, especially when they not only have to compete with major studio presentations in the famed Hall H and displays from DC and Marvel that dominate the convention floor, but with a growing number of attractions outside Comic-Con, available to anyone who happens to be in the area.

Offering tributes of buttons, T-shirts and manicures, the entire Gaslamp Quarter will transform into a geek metropolis. NBC’s new series “Midnight, Texas” will offer free food and tarot card readings at a local restaurant, coffee drinks will be renamed “White Walker Mochas” and the Syfy channel will legally marry superfans in a makeshift chapel with the help of officiant Orlando Jones from “American Gods.”

“As a businessman, I can tell you that the fact that the city of San Diego is allowing dozens of [attractions] around the venue is contributing to a decline in traffic in that main hall,” Rozanski told The Times. “The off-site traffic is good for fans because it enhances the experience. But when you have HBO putting their ‘Game of Thrones’ experience across from the convention center, that acts as a real magnet. As an exhibitor, when you’re paying $18,000 [for a spot on the convention floor] you don’t want to see your customers leave for across the street.”

The hard truth is that many of those potential customers would rather see their favorite stars than shop for comic books. As the masses sweep in, so do the winds of change for the annual convention...
I guess it really used to be about comic books. Now it's about Hollywood movies about comic books.

But keep reading.