RESISTANCE WATCH--Attorneys general for the District of Columbia and the state of Maryland say they will sue President Trump on Monday, alleging that he has violated anti-corruption clauses in the Constitution by accepting millions in payments and benefits from foreign governments since moving into the White House.
RESISTANCE WATCH--Progressive activist and filmmaker Michael Moore made headlines last year when he correctly predicted that Donald Trump would defeat Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election. In February he then launched a new website that would help his fellow activists find and participate in anti-Trump resistance events.
RESISTANCE WATCH--Just days before anti-Trump marches are set to take place in over 100 cities across the United States, the results of a new poll just published suggest that a growing number of Americans want Congress to impeach the president, whose young administration is beset with scandals implicating not merely Trump himself, but members of his family and cabinet as well.
RESISTANCE WATCH-In normal times, Dee from New York would have ordered her copy of The Handmaid’s Tale from Amazon, but these are not normal times. Amazon is on the Grab Your Wallet list, a campaign to boycott retailers that sell Trump family products, which began as a response to the video revealing our now-president’s penchant for grabbing women "by the pussy." Dee bought her book from a smaller retailer instead.
RESISTANCE WATCH--As part of its dragged-out process of rewriting the ordinances governing billboards citywide, the L.A. City Council Planning and Land Use Management Committee (PLUM) is about to receive a report on how the city can install digital billboards on city-owned property. Today I submitted the following memo for the record in opposition to this idea. If you don’t want to see billboards on city-owned buildings and properties, send an e-mail to the PLUM assistant: firstname.lastname@example.org and ask them to add your message to the public record in Council File 11-1705.
RESISTANCE WATCH--Sure a guy who lied to his constituents about the healthcare bill, has financial ties to Russia and body slammed a reporter just won a Congressional seat. That’s infuriating. It’s depressing. And, frankly, it’s tempting to allow it to become discouraging. However, Montana Democrats should be proud of what they accomplished...and not just in an “at least you tried” kind of way. There are some major accomplishments of note that we could all benefit from focusing on in the weeks and months ahead.
RESISTANCE WATCH--Putting a fine point on the spin that President Donald Trump's trip to the Middle East has been a glowing, peace-dealing success, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross praised the fact that there were no protesters in Saudi Arabia—a nation where political dissonance is punishable by death. (Photo: Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross)
Speaking to CNBC on Monday, Ross, who accompanied Trump on the weekend trip to Riyadh, said he found it "fascinating" that he did not see "a single hint of a protester anywhere there during the whole time we were there. Not one guy with a bad placard."
In turn, "Squawk Box" host Becky Quick pointed out "that might be—not necessarily because they don't have those feelings there—but because they control people and don't allow them to come and express their feelings the same way we do here."
"In theory, that could be true, but boy there was certainly no sign of it," Ross responded. "There was not a single effort at any incursion. There wasn't anything. The mood was a genuinely good mood."
He also noted that the Saudi security guards "all wanted to pose for a big photo op" before he left, after which they gifted him "two gigantic bushels of dates."
The remarks immediately caught the ear of Middle East experts and other observers.
Bruce Riedel, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution in the Center for Middle East Policy, told CNBC afterwards that Saudi Arabia is among the "most repressive" of free speech in the Middle East, adding: "Saudi Arabia is an absolute monarchy which forbids any political protest or any manifestation of dissent. It is also a police state that beheads opponents."
Others took to social media to highlight how outrageous Ross's statement was:
The New York Magazine's Jonathan Chait wrote, "Ross is a superficial man, inexperienced in foreign affairs, and easily manipulated by symbolism." However, Chait continued, "he also clearly looks at a society where, unlike the United States, he can sweep through his day without encountering any evidence of political discontent. And he sees in this something to admire."
This is in keeping with Trump, of whom Chait observed: "Rather than hypocritically overlook the authoritarianism of our allies, he actually admires it."
Similarly, the Washington Post's Philip Bump pointed out, "Few Americans have been as publicly vocal about their opposition to protests than Ross's boss, President Trump. One of his first tweets as president-elect and one of his first tweets as president both focused on disparaging protests against him."
Ross is the same administration official who described Trump's bombing of Syria as "after dinner entertainment."
(Lauren McCauley writes for Common Dreams [[commondreams.org]] … where this perspective originated.)