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Weekend link dump for August 21

“What’s really most important is that each of these people believe that the center of gravity in the GOP is pro-Trump and that their political futures would be damaged by turning against him. That is the big deal, far more important than this or that single person being admirable by bucking the tide.”

Meet the chork, the latest innovation in hybrid cutlery.

Wait, there are still people who take John “Sock Puppet” Lott seriously?

How do we turn coal jobs into solar jobs?

“Clinton may have lost an election against a different candidate; she’s by no means guaranteed to win this one. But to assume it was Republicans’ to lose, you must first blind yourself to quantitative facts and strong assumptions about our politics that weaken the idea fatally.”

Three words: Deep fried Twinkies. You’re welcome.

“Since Donald Trump wants to impose new tests on immigrants, he should take the one test every immigrant has to pass to become a United States citizen. He would almost certainly fail, given his general ignorance and weak grasp of basic facts about American history, principles and functioning of our government.”

RIP, Fyvush Finkel, multi-faceted actor.

“In other words, where Trump in this speech is talking about actual national security policies, he puts forth an angry, semi-literate expression of a set of consensus ideas that are largely already in practice.”

“But why focus on immigrants? Why not follow Trump’s mantra of “America First” and apply this test to American citizens? Yes, if you were born here, you had the luck of the draw. Which is a lucky thing for Trump, because if the test could be applied to natural-born citizens, the result would be that over half of the Republican Party—and most of Trump’s voters—would be banned from the United States.”

“But it is just as illusory to claim that liberals manufactured panic about Romney, and in turn inured Republican voters to similar complaints about Trump, as it is to claim the stars cease to exist each morning at sunrise. In reality, liberal complaints about Romney four years ago were mostly in proper proportion to current, graver warnings about Trump today. Just as liberals were more apt than conservatives to be clear-eyed about Trump’s appeal to Republican voters, liberal misgivings about Romney’s politics were prescient and accurate. And if conservatives had heeded them at the time, they might’ve been equipped to preempt Trumpism before it destroyed their movement.”

“I Kickstarted my first novel, sold 1,319 books, and made $4,369.14 (so far) — and so can you (maybe) (under fairly specific circumstances)”.

“So time for a Brexit update, to remind you what a real politician looks like digging herself out of a deep hole.”

RIP, John McLaughlin, former political gabfest host.

“Seven years after that cable, disclosed by WikiLeaks, the Berlusconi-Putin bromance has acquired a new resonance, as foreign policy analysts and even some U.S. officials see unsettling echoes in the recent long-distance kinship between the Russian leader and Donald J. Trump.”

Wishing all the best to Bob Watson as he battles Stage 4 kidney disease.

RIP, Gawker. Go fuck yourself, Peter Thiel.

If “Omaha dad finds pot brownies, eats 4 of them, says mean things to cat” isn’t the greatest headline of all time, I need to know what is. And if you read that, you should read this, too.

“The theory making the rounds is that Trump’s latest campaign reshuffle isn’t really about trying to win the election. In bringing in Steve Bannon, the executive chairman of Breitbart News, and recruiting Roger Ailes, the disgraced former head of Fox News, as an adviser, Trump is making a business play: he’s laying the groundwork for a new conservative media empire to challenge Fox.”

RIP, Donald “D.A.” Henderson, American epidemiologist who led the international war on smallpox that resulted in its eradication in 1980.

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