THE MAIN EVENTS
- It's official. Trump is now officially no longer interested in draining the swamp.
- Positive US economic indicators, particularly in terms of employment - even in the manufacturing sector - continue to provide proof that Trump's campaign narrative about the economy was complete and utter bullshit.
- President Joseph Kabila, leader of the Democratic Republic of the Congo since 2001, looks set to ignore the rapidly approaching, constitutionally mandated end of his term, and a violent crackdown on opposition groups is expected.
A DEEPER DIVE
- If you want to know why Trump's choice for Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is a particularly abominable choice, watch this in depth Rachel Maddow report on how, as CEO of Exxon, he spearheaded a corporate foreign policy that was in direct conflict with America's foreign policy. We're talking Mr. Burns level evil, here folks. I know Maddow can be difficult to endure, but the information contained in this video is vitally important.
- Now seems as good a time as any to remind folks that Russia really hates gay people. Like, they hate gay people a LOT. Like, remember Air Malaysia Flight 17? The one that was shot down by a Russian missile provided to Russian separatists in Ukraine by Russian officials before the launch mechanism was returned to Russia? Over a hundred of the world's top HIV/AIDS researchers were on board that flight. There were no survivors. So, yeah. Russia really hates gay people.
- The Affordable Care Act Exchange - often pejoratively called "Obamacare" by "critics" - saw it's busiest day ever last Thursday, with 670,000 people selecting healthcare insurance plans via the federally run exchange marketplaces. "When I came into office," President Obama announced at a recent press conference, "44 million people were uninsured. Today, we’ve covered more than 20 million of them. For the first time in our history, more than 90 percent of Americans are insured." And that's just in the 39 states that agreed to take part! Not to worry, though... Trump is going to do everything in his power to make sure this world historic atrocity against the so-called Free Market is repealed, only to be replaced by... well, that remains to be seen. Or even speculated about.
- Just finished watching the final episodes of Westworld and wow... I'll probably have something to say about it soon. In the meantime, if anybody out there values my opinion on the worthiness of entertainment media, then by all means find and watch this series. It's fantastic, worthy to sit alongside Black Mirror as an important document relating to deep philosophical issues of our current age.
- And finally for today's suggested readings, which includes suggested viewings as a matter of course, we have the first episode of a series of comedy shorts from Transatlantic alt.comedy legend Rich Fulcher, one of the weirdest guys in the biz. Enjoy!
QUOTE OF THE DAY
"It means someone's mother coughing blood. Or a father groaning in pain and yelling behind a closed door. It means parents or other family members arguing because after one of them missed a promotion at work - because of all the time spent taking care of a loved one. It means slammed doors. It means missed dinners. Most of all, it means a child somewhere, in some inconsequential town, crying, heaving sobs into his pillow, because his parent is going to die. Another child sitting in stunned silence in class, not listening to a word the teacher says."
- Josh Marshall, over at his TPM Blog, publishes a letter from one of his readers that puts into stark, vivid relief what exactly it will mean for real, live human beings to repeal Obamacare.
- The Co-op movement begins, mankind first circles the moon, the US invades Panama, Frank Zappa is born, and more! All in today's edition of the Paracultural Calendar, over at our sister blog, Useless Eater.
- Over at Kubrick U, you can check out a piece of art featuring one of the weirdest mixed-movie-universe mash-ups ever conceived.
- Here's a Blast from the Relatively Recent Past, specifically a June 24, 2014 entry at Useless Eater in which I go theologically medieval on your ass by pointing out the real trouble with demons.
America whines. Africa screams.