Illegal Voting Gets Texas Woman 8 Years in Prison, and Certain Deportation 

From The New York Times:

Far-right websites have seized on Ms. Ortega’s conviction as proof that Mr. Trump is right about rampant fraud and efforts by Democrats to steal the November election.

There is, however, at least one flaw in that story: Ms. Ortega was a registered Republican.

“She voted for Mitt Romney over Barack Obama in the 2012 election. In 2014 she voted for our current attorney general, Ken Paxton,” Mr. Birdsall said. “And guess what? He’s the one responsible for prosecuting her.”

Your double turns out for the day.

Partisanship in 2017 

From Public Policy Poling:

66% of Americans consider the United States to be a safe country, to only 23% who consider it unsafe. Perhaps as an outgrowth of that sentiment only 45% of voters support Trump’s Executive Order on immigration, to 49% who are opposed to it. Among those who do support it you have to wonder how well thought out their position is – by a 51/23 margin Trump voters say that the Bowling Green Massacre shows why Trump’s immigration policy is needed.

Emphasis added.

Weak and Incompetent Leaders act like Strong Leaders 

When reading commentary on contemporary U.S. politics, it is best to recognize any attempt to establish a Coherent Theory of the Trump Presidency based on public outputs for the Kremlinology that it is. The hot takes of “I have a theory that makes sense of all of this!” are the qualitative equivalent of curve-fitting. Don’t ignore these hot takes; one of them is probably right, after all. But understand what is missing. From my view, the conclusion to draw from the past ten days is just how little power this president is able to exert over national politics.

– Tom Pepinsky

Searching for a Non-Paranoid Theory of Donald Trump 

Steve Benen for The Rachel Maddow Show blog:

For eight years, Republicans have accused President Obama of encouraging U.S. enemies and discouraging U.S. allies. America’s longtime friends, GOP politicians have said, are no longer sure they can count on support from the United States as a result of Obama’s foreign policy. The bizarre argument has always been wrong, but ironically, it’s poised to become true in the Republican administration that takes power on Friday.

It’s completely understandable why Donald Trump feels compelled to argue Russian interference did not swing the election. On the other hand, where is the explanation of why Trump prefers Russia to Western Europe? Or what he admires about Putin? 5-10 years ago when some Republicans were drooling over China, you could understand it as admiration for perceived economic growth. What about Russia in 2017 seems worthy of emulation?

Please, if you have a non-paranoid theory of Donald Trump and Russia, please share it.

What to Do If Your Rights Are Violated at a Demonstration or Protest 

A handy guide from The American Civil Liberties Union:

The right to join with fellow citizens in protest or peaceful assembly is critical to a functioning democracy. But it is also unfortunately true that governments and police can violate this right – through the use of mass arrests, illegal use of force, criminalization of protest, and other means intended to thwart free public expression… knowing your rights is the most powerful weapon you have against police abuse.

Star When?

Can’t “see it again” until I see it once said the wistful new parent to nobody in particular.

The Sound of Silence 

Jessica Livingston of Y Combinator on the problems with social media:

I’m horrified at the prospect of the most insightful people in their fields thinking, “That’s something I should comment on. Nah, what’s the point? Too much downside.” 

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