We have another 'Mystery Guest' from What's My Line? It's Ray Bolger. He has fun answering in different voices, although not always well disguised in the slightest, and I'm a little surprised that they don't guess him from that, since at times he sounds just like the 'Scarecrow' from The Wizard of Oz. (Or...well, like Ray Bolger.) At one point, Bennett Cerf unfairly gives a huge clue to others, and I'm surprised he wasn't called on it by host John Daly. Fun, too, is that one of the panelists is Johnny Carson. And also, at the end, after a request from the panel, Bolger dances off.
This is the full show. If you want to only see the 'Mystery Guest' segment, jump to around the 15:30 mark.
The fact that Madison Cawthorn (R-NC) is now being slammed by the two GOP senators of his own state is borderline meaningless to me. They and the Republican Party were fine with him being a reprehensible, sick attack dog, calling for parents to let their sons grow up to be “monsters,” using religious fervor to try to demonize Democrats, promoting the Insurrection to overthrow the government and keep Trump in power, and on and on, and worse. But now that he’s made seedy accusations against the GOP, now they think he’s “an embarrassment.”
The story is that Cawthorn has made weird claims without anything to back them up about Republican lawmakers taking part in drug-fueled orgies.
On a podcast the other day, Cawthorn said that “The sexual perversion that goes on in Washington, I mean—being kind of a young guy in Washington, where the average age is probably 60 or 70, and I look at all of these people, a lot of them I’ve looked up to through my life … then all of a sudden you get invited to, ‘Oh, hey, we’re going to have kind of a sexual get-together at one of our homes, you should come!’ And I’m like, ‘What did you just ask me to come to?’ And then you realize they’re asking you to come to an orgy.” (What likely upsets Republicans about this is that it’s clear if Madison Cawthorn was ever invited to a party in Washington, it would not ever be for Democrats. Just Republicans only. Which means that’s where the “orgy” would be.)
But Cawthorn was on a roll and went on to say he's even seen a fellow lawmaker do cocaine right in front of him -- and not just any congressman, but a major voice against drugs. Which, again, to Republican ears would likely be a Republican, since to them they that only Republicans are against drugs, not the heathen Democrats. “Some of the people that are leading on the movement to try to remove addiction in our country,” Cawthorn said, “then you watch them do a key bump of cocaine in front of you,” said before adding, “This is wild.”
(I have no doubt that some, if not many – and who knows, maybe even most – Republicans in Congress take drugs. That they are taking part in drug-fueled orgies is another matter. Especially since, as many on social media, and in the press and TV analysts have cried out…okay! So, name names! After all, this would be a big crime, and if he knows all about this drug orgies, and is outraged enough to talk about it, then surely he should report it to the police or Justice Department. Shockingly, he’s been silent and has nothing to offer. But then, that’s out dear Madison.
My sense is that he read something on a QAnon message or more likely (since they only seem to ever criticize Democrats) thought he’d come up with his own QAnon-style scandal that they’d love, but screwing up by making it about Republicans, for some reason.
As a result of his charges, Republican Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy took Cawthorn to task, and the two GOP senators from Cawthorn’s own state of North Carolina have come down on him, as well.
As McCarthy told Axios, “In the interview, he claims he watched people do cocaine. Then when he comes in he tells me, he says he thinks he saw maybe a staffer in a parking garage from 100 yards away. I just told him he’s lost my trust, he’s gonna have to earn it back, and I laid out everything I find is unbecoming,. And, you can’t just say, ‘You can’t do this again.’ I mean, he’s, he’s got a lot of members very upset."
Actually, McCarthy is being too coy for words here. Because when he says, "You can't do this again," what he probably means is that you can't tell him because you know he's going to do it again and again and again, because he does it all the time. It's just that it's always been about Democrats before.
Also, it's not clear from Cawthorn's subsequent statements whether or not he's backing off his statements. But then this is Madison Cawthorn. And this is Kevin McCarthy. So, y'know, whatever.
Nonetheless, one of the North Carolina senators from Cawthorn's own state, retiring Senator Richard Burr was blunt in his assessment, as well. When asked about Cawthorn by CNN, Burr replied that, “On any given day, he’s an embarrassment.”
Just to be clear, Madison Cawthorn was an embarrassment long before this story. And Richard Burr never even hiccupped about him. And “any given day” covers all those days of silence, as well. But it took Richard Burr until this story – where Cawthorn finally did something horribly offensive to Republicans – AND until he was himself retiring from the Senate, before Richard Burr took this “given day” to at last call him an “embarrassment.”
The other senator from the state, Thom Tillis (R-NC) is now backing the GOP primary challenger to Cawthorn, something CNN calls “an extraordinary broadside against a fellow Republican from his home state."
What I find extraordinary, though, is that it took this one incident before Tillis decided to not back such a reprehensible human creature. Everything else before this, no matter how despicable and insane it was, was okay with Richard Burr, as long as it was directed against President Biden and Democrats.
I have to admit, my favorite outraged comment came from Rep. Steve Womack (R-Ark.), who said in a closed-door meeting that many of his colleagues are in bed by 9 p.m. No, he did not define “many.” Nor did he add that they drank warm milk first.
That Cawthorn himself is already acknowledging that he might have been exaggerating a bit is not shocking. If he actually said, as Minority Leader McCarthy claims, that the respected congressman he saw directly in front of him was really just a staffer 100 yards away, that makes it all the more Cawthorn-ludicrous – something it must be noted again that Republicans were just fine with before this.
After all, Madison Cawthorn has a long history with lying – something Republicans have been just fine with…until now, when it was directed at them. Among such things:
He claimed he was going to attend the Naval Academy before he was paralyzed in a car crash. However, the Navy has since said they turned him down before the crash occurred. He also has said he was “declared dead” at the crash site – although the accident reports says he was “incapacitated.”
He also accused his primary opponent of being a “Never Trumper” from an edited audio clip. The full audio backs up the opponent’s claims to the contrary.
None of which, again, ever bothered Republicans. Before.
So, my heart breaks for how bad Republicans now feel about freshman congressman Madison Cawthorn being an “embarrassment” and not worthy of staying in Congress and finally needing to be reprimanded. But then, when you own a vicious, rabid attack dog who bites any of your neighbors when it sees them anywhere outside the house, you shouldn’t be embarrassed – or surprised – when it feels emboldened and crazed enough to spin and snarl and finally bite everyone in your own home.
SIDE NOTE: Though the title works on its own merits, and this explanation is one that no Chicagoan needs, for others State and Madison is a major intersection in the downtown Chicago Loop. where State Street ("that great street") and Madison Street cross. For that matter, if you look in the lower left corner of the map below, you’ll see a marker for "Sidley Austin LLP." That’s the law firm of Newton Minow, father of the oft-mentioned here Nell Minow. And where Barack Obama worked – and met Michelle Robinson. Yes, I know none of this has anything to do with Madison Cawthorn and the newly-embarrassed Republicans, but I couldn’t resist the title, and then felt an explanation was needed – and once there, why not add the fun details…
From the fine folks at The Dodo, this is a great tale about a man who took a trip to Brazil and went down the Amazon River into basically the jungle. And there, he found an emaciated stray dog on a deserted island (one that likely disappears when the tide is high enough.) And...well, the video tells the rest of the wonderful story, which takes a few twists and turns along the way.
Yesterday, Bob Woodward and Robert Costa wrote an article here in the Washington Post about having copies of White House phone logs for January 6. Beyond the record of who Trump spoke to as the Insurrection was occurring, the logs also show an unexplained 7-1/2-hour gap during the Insurrection.
Adding to the mystery of the gap, there is no record of a call with GOP Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy who has insisted he tried to convince Trump to address the rioters. So, either he's lying or (far more likely) Trump was using backchannels or a burner phone to talk to people (during that 7-1/2-hour gap) so that it wouldn't be on the official records.
I mean, seriously now, 7-1/2 hours without being on a phone call?? I don't think that even I will go 7-1/2 hours without being on a phone call. And that's without being president. During an Insurrection.
In a statement released yesterday from his bunker in Mar-a-Lago, Trump said, "I have no idea what a burner phone is, to the best of my knowledge I have never even heard the term." Even accepting that at face value, it’s not remotely as great an "explanation" as he thinks it is – on several levels. After all, for starters, 12-year-olds know what a burner phone is, so how completely out of touch is he? Furthermore, just because Trump says he (supposedly) doesn’t know what a burner phone is, that doesn’t mean he didn’t use one. You may not know what a toaster-oven is, but if you put bread in a device, push a lever and it comes out brown and crunchy, you used one. And even more to the point, Trump’s response ignores all the other ways he could have communicated without going through the White House operator. Saying you never saw a specific movie because you’ve never been to a movie theater in your life, that doesn’t mean you didn’t stream it at home or get the DVD.
It also doesn't help that former Trump advisor John Bolton has said that he's not only heard Trump talk about burner phones, but even discussed burner phones with him about they're used to avoid having one's conversations scrutinized. So, yeah, Trump being Trump. The guy who never met a lie he couldn't pass up.
(What I'd love is that when the New York Attorney General gets Trump sworn in under oath, she asks him, "Do you know what a burner phone is?")
So, to make it easier for Trump, who wants us all to believe that he doesn't have a clue what burner phones are, he could instead be asked as simply and clearly as possible, "Did…you…use…any…mobile…phone...during...those...hours?" Or if even the concept of mobile phones is too difficult for him, then perhaps “Did you talk to anyone who was not physically in the White House during those 7-1/2 hours, whether using either some sort of electronic device or telepathy?
Yes, a missing 7-1/2 hours. Man, even Rose Mary Woods only had an 18-1/2-minute gap on her tape transcriber of Richard Nixon’s infamous Watergate conspiracy cover-up meeting with Bob Haldeman. She’s a piker compared to 7-1/2 hours. But at least she had a bizarre twisted-body explanation for how the 18-1/2-minute gap could have possibly occurred, keeping her foot on the pedal, pushing the wrong button and reaching for the phone – for 18-1/2 minutes.
And Chief of Staff Alexander Haig explanation may have been even worse, even that’s possible. He blamed the 18-1/2-minute gap on a “sinister force.” Which I guess is evil demons.
The best Trump could do is, “I have no idea what a burner phone is.” Which still leaves us with a 7-1/2-hour gap in the White House phone records.
But of course, that’s merely the missing 7-1/2 hours of the White House phone logs of people Trump likely spoke to. What the records do show is at least some of the people who Trump did speak to on the day of the Insurrection.
Among many others, there was six minutes talking to Rudy Giuliani, 26 minutes talking to Stephen Miller, two calls to Steve Bannon (who the day before said on his podcast that “All hell is going to break loose tomorrow”) and a call to the White House operator to phone Senator Josh Hawley (R-MO). Whether Trump and Hawley spoke before or after the senator’s fist bump to the Insurrectionists is unclear – since obviously the 7-1/2 hours of phone logs are missing. Also, the phone logs says that Trump and Jim Jordan spoke for 10 minutes, a call which Jordan has said he couldn’t remember at first, and when later it came to mind, he couldn’t recall exactly when it was because, yeah, most people forget a 10-minute phone call with the president. On the day when there’s an Insurrection…
This is a pretty amusing "game" that Kelly Clarkson and Anne Hathaway played on The Kelly Clarkson Show. It's sort of a version of Name That Tune, though with the twist being that the song had to be sung, not just named.
Although Clarkson is, of course, a professional singer, Hathaway smokes her throughout the contest (albeit with much graciousness), much to the host's entertaining dismay. And then a sequence starts around the 4-minute mark that's wonderful, and Clarkson is open and absolutely hilarious in her utter lack of self-consciousness. It's worth noting, as well, that Hathaway is a superb singer. And clearly knows her stuff.
It’s seemed like an uphill climb for John Eastman to keep his emails private, especially since the school whose email system he used said that he broke the user agreement and that the school therefore owned the material, not Eastman.
This was a school, by the way, where Eastman had once been the dean of their law school.
In a scathing 44-page ruling, federal judge David O. Carter made clear how much higher that hill for Eastman was, along with all the barriers in the path. It’s filled with damning statements, but I think the most brutal passage comes on page 35. That’s when Judge Carter writes in no uncertain, blunt terms –
“The illegality of the plan was obvious. Our nation was founded on the peaceful transition of power, epitomized by George Washington laying down his sword to make way for democratic elections. Ignoring this history, President Trump vigorously campaigned for the Vice President to single-handedly determine the results of the 2020 election. As Vice President Pence stated, ‘no Vice President in American history has ever asserted such authority.’ Every American—and certainly the President of the United States—knows that in a democracy, leaders are elected, not installed. With a plan this ‘BOLD,’ President Trump knowingly tried to subvert this fundamental principle.
“Based on the evidence, the Court finds it more likely than not that President Trump corruptly attempted to obstruct the Joint Session of Congress on January 6, 2021.”
He also wrote that the actions taken by Trump and Eastman, amounted to “a coup in search of a legal theory.”
I will assume that this ruling will be appealed. But based on the extensive, detailed evidence of the knowledge and criminal intent of the participants that Judge Carter presents – and keep in mind that the judge has read all the material which, at present, has been kept from the public – it seems like his ruling is authoritative. So, appealing a ruling hardly means that the appeal will be upheld. That’s another high hill for Eastman to climb.
It's important to note, as well, that this ruling only pertains to John Eastman and his attempt to keep his emails from going to the January 6 Select Committee. It is not about Trump. However, in presenting his evidence for making his ruling, the details Judge Carter offers are comprehensively about Trump, his knowledge of the efforts to overthrow democracy, and the criminal intent of his actions.
When a federal judge rules that “The illegality of the plan was obvious” – a plan made between Eastman, others and Trump – and that “Based on the evidence [My emphasis of “evidence” added], the Court finds it more likely than not that President Trump corruptly attempted to obstruct the Joint Session of Congress on January 6, 2021”, what this does is put added focus on the Department of Justice to open a criminal investigation of Trump. If they haven’t done so already.
For those who like to make it through such things, you can read the full ruling here.
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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