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“Catcher in the Rye” Author J.D. Salinger Dead At 91

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“Catcher in the Rye” Author J.D. Salinger Dead At 91.

Famed and reclusive author, whose credo was, “I almost always write about very young people,” has died at the age of 91. Salinger’s relationships with both women and religion were the subject of much unwanted attention, yet his name remained iconic, especially in the Manhattan literary world, where he grew up. He passed away in a small house in Cornish, N.H.

More on his life at Wikipedia.

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‘Flying Monkeys on a Mission for the Wicked Witch’: Raskin Rips Republicans Over Impeachment ‘Inquiry’

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U.S. Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD), the Ranking Member of the Committee on Oversight and Accountability, blasted members of the House GOP at the opening of their first, televised, impeachment “inquiry” into President Joe Biden Thursday morning, declaring, “If the Republicans had a smoking gun or even a dripping water pistol, they would be presenting it today but they’ve got nothing on Joe Biden.”

Ranking Member Raskin noted he full House did not vote to hold an official impeachment inquiry, which he said violates the ruling of the Dept. of Justice’s Office of Legal Counsel (OLC).

Congressman Raskin, a former constitutional law professor who served as the lead prosecutor for the second impeachment of Donald Trump, told the Committee, “like flying monkeys on a mission for the Wicked Witch of the West, Trump’s followers in the House now carry his messages out to the world: shut down the government, shutdown the prosecutions. But the cultmaster has another command for his followers, which brings us here today.”

Raskin added that Republicans “don’t have the votes because dozens of Republicans recognize what a futile and absurd process this is. Now, the title of the hearing is ‘The basis for impeachment inquiry of President Joseph Biden,’ and yet they present us no basis at all today. Even after eight months of investigation.”

READ MORE: Poll Finds Majority Oppose Impeachment Inquiry as House GOP Kicks Off Hearings Two Days Before Likely Shutdown

“They’ve invited three witnesses to testify. Not one of them is an eyewitness to a presidential crime of any kind. Not one of them is a direct fact witness about any of the events related to Ukraine, and Burisma. Not one of them has participated in the eight months of investigation, in which our distinguished Chairman has publicly boasted that he received 100% of everything he asked for, and I quote, ‘every subpoena that I’ve signed as chairman of the House Oversight Committee, over the last five months, we’ve gotten 100% of what we’ve requested, whether it’s with the FBI, or with the banks, or with Treasury.'”

Raskin kicked off his remarks with remarks of Republicans attacking other Republicans for holding an “impeachment drive.”

“So let’s get it straight,” Raskin began. “We’re 62 hours away from shutting down the government of the United States of America. And Republicans are launching an impeachment drive based on a long debunked and discredited lie. No foreign enemy’s ever been able to shut down the government of the United States but now MAGA Republicans are about to do just that. But they don’t want to cut off public services to people and tonight, paychecks to more than a million service members, without first launching impeachment drive, even when they don’t have a shred of evidence against President Biden for an impeachable offense. You think I’m being harsh? Here’s what some Republicans have had to say over the last week about the actions of the Republicans, as they watch up close ‘the dysfunction caucus at work,’ in the words of our GOP colleague from Nebraska, Don Bacon, ‘clown show,’ ‘foolishness,’ ‘terribly misguided,’ ‘stupidity,’ ‘failure to lead,’ ‘lunatics,’ ‘disgraceful,’ .new low,’ ‘pathetic,’ ‘enabling Chairman Xi,’ ‘people that have serious issues,’ ‘those folks don’t have a plan,’ ‘show just how broken they are, and ‘individuals that just want to burn the whole place down.'”

“Now, if I said any of these things, they’d probably take my words down, but these are Republicans talking about Republicans. So let’s be clear. This isn’t partisan warfare America’s seeing today, it is chaotic infighting between Republicans vs. Republicans. It’s MAGA versus extreme MAGA, as if anybody in the real world could tell the difference between the two.”

“What a staggering failure of leadership. Speaker McCarthy’s invertebrate appeasement of the most fanatical elements of his conference now threatens the well-being of every American. Now some people think the members of the GOP caucus aren’t interested in anything logical. They just want to see the world burn, as Alfred Pennyworth put it in ‘The Dark Knight,’ but I see a method in the madness.”

READ MORE: ‘Poof’: White House Mocks Stunned Fox News Host as GOP’s Impeachment Case Evaporates on Live Air

“A week ago Donald Trump posted a comment saying that a government shutdown ‘is the last chance to deep fund these political prosecutions against me and other patriots.’ You get it? To delay justice Donald Trump would cut off paychecks to a couple million service members and federal workers and furlough more than a million workers and pay them later for having not worked. They would halt food assistance to millions of moms and kids and keep NIH in my district from enrolling any more patients in life and death clinical research trials. Trump’s convinced if you shut the government down his criminal prosecutions on 91 different felony and misdemeanor charges will be defunded in delayed long enough to keep him from having to go before a jury of his peers before the 2024 election.”

“On August 27, he posted this edict: ‘Either impeach the bum or fade into oblivion. They did it to us.’ Of course the standard for impeachment is not whether ‘they did it to us,’ but whether the President committed treason or bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors. But the Constitution is irrelevant to them. What counts is what Donald Trump wants. As Republican Representative Ken Buck, a Freedom Caucus member, told CNN the other day, President Trump has gone on his social media accounts and said we should be impeaching President Biden. Kevin McCarthy said we have an impeachment inquiry. You draw the conclusion directly or indirectly. This impeachment inquiry was a result of President Trump’s pressure.”

“So we move from a Trump-ordered government shutdown to a Trump-ordered impeachment process, and yet back into reality-based world the majority sits completely empty-handed with no evidence of any presidential wrongdoing. No smoking gun, no gun, no smoke. In fact, we have had to slide awkwardly into a House impeachment process without the benefit of the floor vote that Speaker McCarthy insisted was absolutely imperative and necessary when Donald Trump was impeached.”

Watch the videos above or at this link.

READ MORE: ‘I Feel a Little Bit Dumber for What You Say’: The Nine Worst Moments of the GOP Presidential Debate

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Poll Finds Majority Oppose Impeachment Inquiry as House GOP Kicks Off Hearings Two Days Before Likely Shutdown

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A just-released NBC News poll finds a solid majority of registered voters are opposed to House Republicans’ impeachment inquiry of President Joe Biden, which kicks off Thursday morning, just two days before House Republicans are likely to shut down the federal government.

“56% of registered voters say Congress should not hold hearings to start the process of removing Biden from office, while 39% say it should,” NBC News reports. “The House Oversight Committee is gathering for its first hearing in the inquiry, which Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., announced two weeks ago to investigate Biden’s ties to his son Hunter’s business dealings, probing what McCarthy described as ‘allegations of abuse of power, obstruction and corruption.'”

Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s “own conference was divided over the impeachment inquiry, and so are voters — who are also, unsurprisingly, divided along party lines when it comes to proceedings aimed at removing Biden from office,” NBC News adds. “An overwhelming majority of Democrats (88%) oppose the hearings, while 73% of Republicans support them. Six in 10 independents oppose the hearings, and 29% say Congress should move forward with them.”

READ MORE: House GOP Shutdown Demands Include Gutting Billions From Dept. of Education, Costing Over 200,000 Teachers Their Jobs

The Congressional Integrity Project, a group of Democratic strategists, have published what it calls a “regularly updated rundown of Republican commentators, Members of Congress, and media personalities” who have indicated there is not sufficient evidence to initiate an impeachment inquiry against President Biden. It includes recent statements from Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX), Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO), Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA), Rep. Don Bacon (R-NE), Rep. Dave Joyce (R-OH), Rep. Dusty Johnson (R-SD), Rep. French Hill (R-AR), Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT), Senator Shelly Moore Capito (R-WV), and Rep. Mike Lawler (R-NY).

At midnight on Saturday the federal government will shut down, unless the House passes legislation to fund the government, the Senate passes the House’s legislation, and President Joe Biden signed it into law.

READ MORE: ‘I Feel a Little Bit Dumber for What You Say’: The Nine Worst Moments of the GOP Presidential Debate

The shutdown, which has yet to begin, may already have cost the American taxpayers possibly a billion dollars, well-known economist Justin Wolfers casually suggested:

“This week you and I are paying over a million federal employees over a billion dollars to put aside their regular work to plan for a pointless shutdown, and that shutdown will grind the government to a halt which will also cause untold disruption through the private sector.”

Earlier this week, House Speaker Emerita Nancy Pelosi said, “A MAGA shutdown drains billions of dollars from our economy. It says to our men and women in uniform — you’re not getting paid. To women and children depending on food assistance — you’re not eating. All 3 recent shutdowns were under REPUBLICAN House Speakers. Irresponsible.”

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‘I Feel a Little Bit Dumber for What You Say’: The Nine Worst Moments of the GOP Presidential Debate

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The second Republican presidential debate was mired in in-fighting and personal attacks by the candidates,  a vow to wage physical war against Mexico, hate against LGBTQ people, an insistence the U.S. Constitution doesn’t actually mean what the words on the page say, and a fight over curtains.

Here are nine of the worst moments from Wednesday night’s debate.

The debate itself got off to a rough start right from the beginning.

Multiple times candidate cross-talk made it impossible for anyone to make a point, like this moment when nearly half the candidates talked over each other during a nearly two minute segment as the moderators struggled to take control.

READ MORE: ‘I Don’t Think So’: As GOP Debate Kicks Off Trump Teases Out the Chances of Any Candidate Becoming His Running Mate

Vivek Ramasway got into a heated argument with Nikki Haley, leading the former Trump UN Ambassador to tell him, “Honestly, every time I hear you, I feel a little bit dumber for what you say.”


Ramaswamy launched an attack on transgender children.

Moments after Ramaswamy attacked transgender children, so did Mike Pence, calling supporting transgender children’s rights “crazy.”

He promised “a federal ban on transgender chemical or surgical surgery anywhere in the country,” and said: “We’ve got to protect our kids from this radical gender ideology agenda.”

Former New Jersey Governor Cris Christie described the First Lady of the United States, Dr. Jill Biden, who has dedicated her life to teaching, as the person President Biden is “sleeping with.”

South Carolina Senator Tim Scott and former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, as CNN’s Manu Raju noted were “one-time allies,” after “Haley appointed Scott to his Senate seat,” until they started “going at it at [the] debate.”

“Talk about someone who has never seen a federal dollar she doesn’t like,” Scott charged. “Bring it, Tim,” Haley replied before they got into a fight about curtains.

Senator Scott declared, “Black families survived slavery, we survived poll taxes and literacy tests, we survived discrimination being woven into the laws of our country. What was hard to survive was [President] Johnson’s Great Society, where they decided to take the Black father out of the household to get a check in the mail.”

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, currently leading over everyone on stage, said practically nothing for the first 15 minutes. He may have said the least of all the candidates on stage Wednesday night. But he denounced Donald Trump for being “missing in action.”

Watch all the videos above or at this link.

 

 

 

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