January 18, 2017

"Women are not a footnote to history.... We value women who allege they have been the victims of injustice."

"It takes a great deal of courage to sue the most powerful man on the planet."

"Look, I don’t like tweeting. I have other things I could be doing."

"But I get very dishonest media, very dishonest press. And it’s my only way that I can counteract. When people make misstatements about me, I’m able to say it and call it out."

Said Trump. People like to portray him as tweeting out of an irrepressible urge to blurt out random thoughts. It fits the hopeless-narcissist template. Of course, he rejects that template, and that serves his interests. He might be lying.
“Now if the press were honest, which it’s not, I would absolutely not use Twitter,” he told host Ainsley Earhardt on “Fox & Friends," adding, "I wouldn’t have to.”
If that's a bluff, it's impossible to call.

50 years ago today: The U.S. gets its first spaghetti Western, "A Fistful of Dollars."

"'A Fistful of Dollars' was filmed on a low budget (reported to be $200,000), and Eastwood was paid $15,000 for his role."



You see, I understand you men were just playin' around, but the mule, he just doesn't get it. Course, if you were to all apologize... I don't think it's nice, you laughin'. You see, my mule don't like people laughing. He gets the crazy idea you're laughin' at him. Now if you apologize, like I know you're going to, I might convince him that you really didn't mean it....

"President Obama on Tuesday commuted the sentence of a man convicted for his role in a Puerto Rican nationalist group linked to more than 100 bombings in New York and other cities in the 1970s and 1980s."

The NYT reports:
The man, Oscar Lopez Rivera, was serving a 70-year sentence after being convicted of numerous charges, including seditious conspiracy, a charge used for those plotting to overthrow the United States government.

He was linked to the radical group known as the F.A.L.N., the Spanish acronym for the Armed Forces of National Liberation, and was one of more than a dozen group members convicted in the 1980s....

Levi Dylan, Bob Dylan's grandson, is a model.

Very cute.

More here, from last summer:
“I gave up on music,” he told the Cut at the Cinema Society’s post-screening party for Southside With You on Wednesday, standing in a courtyard outside Harold’s Meat + Three. “I still love to play, but it’s too hard to make a living. And I think that was a mature decision to make.”
His girlfriend got him into modeling: “She kind of set me up, and from there it was sort of like dominoes.”

He's got "DYLAN" tattooed on his forearm.

A cap is more of a hat than a cape is a hate.

Let's frontpage a debate that broke out in the comments. I had said, in the previous post:
Trump the billionaire has successfully bonded with millions of working-class Americans. He's convincingly worn a trucker hat and spoken like a tough guy. Trump's wealth is built on branding, and he made his grand political success out of branding: He's a man of the people.
jacksonjay said...
The Professor can be so dumb. The headwear is OBVIOUSLY a cap not a hat.
I responded (links added):
The standard term for that item of clothing is "trucker hat." I agree that the term for the baseball item is "baseball cap," but I believe the thing Trump wears is not a baseball cap but a trucker hat.

On the standard distinction between the words "hat" and "cap" in English, I'll start the debate with the statement: Not all hats are caps, but all caps are hats... except perhaps a skullcap.
I found a discussion of the hat/cap distinction at the blog of Mary Robinette Kowal, who, I see, is a Hugo-award winning author and professional puppeteer. Kowal writes:

At Donald Trump's big pre-inauguration dinner — Melania isn't there, and neither is Ivanka.

Lots of photographs at The Daily Mail, which puts special emphasis on Kellyanne Conway:
The president-elect was seen stepping off his Trump jet at Reagan National Airport with Conway in tow at about 8pm. She was wearing a white gown and appeared to be carrying a fur coat.
The Daily Mail can be so dumb. In the photograph, the garment is obviously a stole, not a coat. Whether it's real or fake fur is unknown. It doesn't look very nice, so I'm going to assume it's fake fur and Conway is baiting anti-Trumpists to lambaste her for wearing fur.

The article says, "Melania Trump did not appear to have made the trip with her husband," and a commenter says: "Don't think we'll be seeing much more of her. Ivanka has taken on the role of first lady." But there's no sign of Ivanka at this event either.

Whether Ivanka or Melania will step into the made-up "First Lady" role, neither Melania nor Ivanka attended the big gala dinner, as far as I can tell, and the glammed up lady at Trump's side was Kellyanne Conway. Conway has a spouse too, but I don't see him there either. Here's why I think all of this is perfectly okay:

1. Trump was tending to donors. There were about "150 diplomats and 300 or so of Trump's biggest donors and VIPs." He flew down from NY to do the political theater, then got back on his plane and returned to NY. It was a quick business trip. Trump graciously and efficiently cranked through it.

2. Conway is Trump's female partner in this political business. She's up for the political talk and comfortable with the exposure, and she deserves the spotlight for all that she has done.

3. Melania and Ivanka are reserved for other occasions, perhaps more exclusive groups than the 300 top donors. Maybe these women are "reserved" in the other sense: private.

4. Melania and Ivanka may have minds of their own and a distaste for being shown off, especially to big donors, people who have bought access to power. If it is possible to buy access to these women, it's not as easy as being 300th on the list of top donors to a presidential campaign.

5. When they appear at inaugural events, Melania and Ivanka's looks will be subjected to extreme attention. Fashion designers have balked at dressing them, and while I'm sure they can overcome that trifling obstacle, they may want their first entrance on the presidential stage to be more beautiful and grand.

6. Melania and Ivanka may love Kellyanne Conway performing this part of the feminine role.

7. The Obamas have — or so it seems — loved parties. Some of that love may be because they have been loved. It's been relatively simple to show up in nice clothes and get perceived as fabulous by everyone in the press and the political establishment. The experience for the Trumps is completely different. Not only have they already had plenty of fancy parties in their lives — it's no big new thrill — but they don't have the hope the Obamas had of inspiring Americans to enjoy the parties vicariously. With the Obamas, many Americans could feel that the first African-American President and First Lady embodied our dream of progress. If they danced together in fancy clothes, they danced in our hearts: How good we are! Not in all hearts, of course, but in many hearts, and the Obamas knew this, and performed in the Theater of Racial Harmony with enthusiasm and grace.

8. The Trumps must follow the Obamas, and they must know very well that their political show is very different. They step into the roles as very rich people. They've already had plenty of parties — fancier parties — for decades. If they party in the public spotlight, they are rich people, enjoying their riches, excluding us. And there's probably little intrinsic pleasure for them. It's just another party, and, really, an inferior party, humoring donors and diplomats.

9. Upgrading Kellyanne Conway like this dilutes the perception that Ivanka is — in some weird, creepy way — the real First Lady. There are 3 important women, and they appear in different settings. It increases the perception that Melania is the First Lady. She's automatically the First Lady by being the President's wife, so what is the argument that she's lost that status? If Kellyanne and Ivanka both do appearances at Trump's side, Ivanka isn't special enough to oust Melania.

10. Trump the billionaire has successfully bonded with millions of working-class Americans. He's convincingly worn a trucker hat and spoken like a tough guy. Trump's wealth is built on branding, and he made his grand political success out of branding: He's a man of the people. He's told us that he had a great life, and he didn't need to do this, but he saw our need, and the left the pleasures and comforts of his billionaire life to do service for us, to make America great again. To preserve that message, he should not be seen to care about big parties. He's coming to Washington to work — for us — and not to enjoy himself.

11. The message described in #10 is consistent with what we will be seeing from Melania: She's staying in NYC to do her work, which is to care for her son and to support him as he finishes the school year. She's not a rich, self-centered lady eager to show off her beauty and her clothes in the public spotlight. She's modest and circumspect and, like so many of the Americans who voted for her husband, focused on doing a good job at the task in front of her — rearing a child.

January 17, 2017

Obama frees Chelsea Manning!

The NYT reports:
President Obama on Tuesday largely commuted the remaining prison sentence of Chelsea Manning, the army intelligence analyst convicted of an enormous 2010 leak that revealed American military and diplomatic activities across the world, disrupted the administration, and made WikiLeaks, the recipient of those disclosures, famous.

The decision by Mr. Obama rescued Ms. Manning, who twice tried to commit suicide last year, from an uncertain future as a transgender woman incarcerated at the male military prison at Fort Leavenworth, Kan. She has been jailed for nearly seven years, and her 35-year sentence was by far the longest punishment ever imposed in the United States for a leak conviction.
Manning gets out this May, instead of in 2045.

We were just talking yesterday about the NYT's sympathetic highlighting of Manning's plight. And we were just talking today — it's one post down — about the NYT editorial "Mr. Obama, Pick Up Your Pardon Pen."

ADDED: Obama has also pardoned James Cartwright:
Cartwright, the former vice chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, pleaded guilty in October to a single charge of making false statements to federal investigators in 2012 when he was questioned about leaking top secret information on US efforts to cripple Iran’s nuclear program to two journalists. 

"The clemency process is run out of the Justice Department, where career prosecutors have little interest in reversing the work of their colleagues."

"It’s a recipe for intransigence, dysfunction and injustice on a mass scale. Mr. Obama understands the problem, even if he didn’t fix it. As he wrote in an article published in this month’s issue of The Harvard Law Review, the process operates like a lottery, making it hard to tell what distinguishes the few lucky applicants who get clemency from the many deserving ones who don’t."

So write the editors of the NYT in an editorial titled "Mr. Obama, Pick Up Your Pardon Pen." The headline is misleading. Yes, Obama does have a few days left, and he could issue a bunch of pardons. But the point is that the system is bad, Obama obviously knows it, he could have done something to restructure the process, and he did not.

The final sentence is extraordinary for the NYT: "Perhaps President-elect Donald Trump will learn from Mr. Obama’s failure to heed that wisdom."

1. The word "failure," attached to Obama?!

2. Hope expressed that Donald Trump will fix something.

3. Wisdom attributed to — you have to read the preceding sentence — George W. Bush.

"Did Trump really come and meet with Moscow prostitutes?"

Putin asks and answers:
Firstly he is an adult, and secondly he is a person who for many years has organized a beauty pageant, socialized with the most beautiful women in the world. It is hard to believe that he ran to a hotel to meet with our girls of a low social class, although they are the best in the world. But finally, you know, what I want to say, prostitution is a serious, ugly, social phenomenon, young women do this connected to the fact that they cannot survive any other way and that is a problem of society but people who order false information and spread this information against the elected President, who fabricate it and use it in a political fight, they are worse than prostitutes.
Ah! This pithy statement proceeds in stages:

1. Defense of Trump: He's got so much access to the most beautiful women that it makes no sense to think he'd consort with low women.

2. Defense of prostitutes: Our prostitutes are great prostitutes!

3. Feminist/left-wing critique: Don't speak of prostitution in terms of low women choosing a degraded way of life. Society forces them into it, and society deserves the blame, and we must improve it.

4. Attack on the purveyors of fake news: Worse than prostitutes!

IN THE COMMENTS: Lyssa quoted "It is hard to believe that he ran to a hotel to meet with our girls of a low social class, although they are the best in the world" and asks: "Did Trump craft this statement? It sounds so much like something that he would say. Maybe he'll fire back at the perceived slights to America's prostitutes."

Freeman Hunt scripts tweets for Trump:
"Even prostitutes are poor in Russia. Sad! American prostitutes at all income levels. Bad work but more money in US!"

"Poor women forced to hook in Russia! Sad! Americans prostitutes by choice. Some big $$$! Against law though. Don't do it! Gross!"

"Americans richer than Russians. No need to be prostitutes! Russian prostitutes better because American prostitutes lazy. Just guessing!"

"Putin wrong. American prostitutes best in world! Have heard. No experience. Always gotten from classy women free. Not prostitutes!"

Here we are.



ADDED: Here's an older video of jack rabbits fighting.



It's interesting, I think — if you want to understand the art of film — that the first video feels immediately and continuously hilarious and the second video — much longer and with insistent music — may not even make you laugh at all.

My first stab at analysis is that the darkness and absence of context in the first video makes it feel abstract and allegorical, causing you to instantly visualize the rabbits as stand-ins for human beings: I know people like that. Silly people are like that. Hey, we're all kind of like that.

You go hurtling through important thoughts quickly. It's not a nature film of curious animal behavior. It's a horror flick shocking us with a harsh look at how stupid we are.

"So Yahoo's now called Altaba - not to be confused with Alt-Abba, the crypto-white nationalist Swedish pop group with hits like #DanzigQueen."

Mocking the Yahoo name change.

That's from a week ago, when the news hit that Yahoo — with one of the all-time great company names — was changing its name to Altaba.

I'm not positive this incredibly stupid change is really happening. There's also this:
Yahoo announced last week that it would be changing its name to Altaba (upon completion of Verizon acquiring core Yahoo) seemingly to reflect the investment in Chinese giant Alibaba.

However, the name change will only take effect if and only if Verizon goes through with the planned acquisition of core Yahoo....
By the way, I'm a little sensitive to all this mockery around the prefix "Alt-." I don't like this late-developing impression that Althouse is a crypto-white nationalist edifice of some kind. The "Alt-" in Althouse means "old" not "alternative" or "high," though "alternative" and "high" are at least as positive as "old." This idea of "Alt-" meaning "crypto-white nationalist" is not only inaccurate, but it's unfair to all of the persons, places, and things that have already constructed our identity with the very positive prefix "Alt-."

"Hillary is going to be very busy as President the next 4-8 years. Donald Trump is going to be very bitter. And the Republicans are just going to be gone. Good riddence."

A comment written 2 months ago on an ABC News article, "2016 Race Stays at 47-43 Through Sunday (POLL)."
Rolling forward to interviews conducted Thursday through Sunday, the ABC News/Washington Post tracking poll shows the same results as its previous estimate of 47 percent for Hillary Clinton and 43 percent for Donald Trump, with Gary Johnson still at 4 percent and Jill Stein now at 1 percent.
I'm reading that today after this brand new article from ABC News, "Trump to Enter Office as Most Unpopular President for at Least 40 Years, Poll Finds":
Donald Trump enters office as the most unpopular of at least the last seven newly elected presidents, a new ABC News/Washington Post poll finds, with ratings for handling the transition that are also vastly below those of his predecessors.
While you're busy talking about who's the most unpopular President, can you spare a few moments to tell us which news organization has the least accurate polling?

With election polls, you are put to the test and capable of embarrassment in the end, and even so, you're not too reliable. In this current popularity poll, no one can ever show you up. There's no ultimate accounting when the people reveal how much they like or don't like Donald Trump. You can say whatever you want in the form of numbers that are called a poll, but we know that you want to cripple the Trump presidency before it even begins. I consider the poll fake news.

And I realize that from your perspective I am one of those terrible people who have "come unmoored from a shared set of core facts." I'm not hearing the call to adhere to the "knowable, hard, empirical truth." But I can't accept ABC News/Washington Post poll numbers as facts. It's a fact that ABC News/Washington Post got the election polls wrong. I don't want be moored to false facts. It's better to be unmoored. I don't want to believe in a truth beyond the real limits of truth.

I have heard Barack Obama say:
But without some common baseline of facts, without a willingness to admit new information and concede that your opponent might be making a fair point, and that science and reason matter, then we’re going to keep talking past each other.
That's a tricky sentence. If you drift along with it, you might find it blandly pleasant in a can't-we-all-get-along kind of way. But it's actually radically specious! I've written about this sentence before, when I live-blogged Obama's Farewell Address:
Obama resorts to what's been a stock argument with Democrats since the election: We need a "common baseline of facts." That always sounds to me like longing for a time when liberal mainstream media filtered the facts. That's over. What are you going to do about it? The facts are open to debate now, and many voices can be heard. If you really love democracy, why aren't you thrilled?
Looking at this sentence again this morning, I am irritated by its trickiness. The middle part is fine. I like "a willingness to admit new information and concede that your opponent might be making a fair point" — let's keep learning and let's keep talking — and I agree  that "science and reason matter" — let's research and study and think. I love progress in human knowledge and understanding. But why does that fine middle section belong enclosed within the statement: "But without some common baseline of facts... we’re going to keep talking past each other." That says we can't have a real interchange with each other unless we already agree. It's a complete rejection of the idea that people with different understandings of the world can have a good-faith debate and an opportunity to persuade each other or to see the flaws and gaps in their own knowledge and the need for more research and analysis. Why must conversation begin with a common baseline of facts?

It's an ugly, false statement with a big glob of sweetener plopped into it!

ADDED: The ABC/Washington Post poll oversamples: 31% Democrats and 23% Republicans.

Can the President tweet? Yes, but not very well at all.

ncHe hasn't put anything up since January 10th, and it's just:

That's pointing you to another place, the place where he's most comfortable speaking to the American people: on TV, in a calm, upholstered setting, a few feet away from a news or talk-show celebrity whose face glows with love.

And it's odd, isn't it?, that @BarackObama speaks of Barack Obama in the third person — President Obama reflects on eight years of progress.

That's not really the right way to do Twitter. You should feel like a real person, talking straight to us. Directly at us and in clear words that convey specific, almost startling meaning.

And you have to put a few things up every day. Before that January 10th tweet, @BarackObama hadn't tweeted anything since before the election. On November 5th, he tweeted: "In the weekly address, President Obama discusses what #Obamacare has done to improve health care" — (another promo for a speech, a little note to say what I have to say will be somewhere other than on Twitter). And he had 2 posts that day. The other one was: "Let's keep working to keep our economy on a better, stronger course."

Now, I'm reading the fine print: "This account is run by Organizing for Action staff. Tweets from the President are signed -bo." I don't think there's been a "-bo" tweet in over a year.

Imagine the praise that would be lavished on Barack Obama if he'd really tweeted in the way that counts as real tweeting. Imagine if he'd said pithy things that cut to the core of important issues and events and if he had taken good-humored shots at critics. Oh! He'd have been celebrated as the new-media-savvy genius of the world!

But Barack Obama will only be President for 3 more days. The incoming President actually has already established himself a brilliant Twitter user. He has leaped over innumerable political and media critics, danced over their heads in a mind-boggling journey to the White House. He's talked to us the People in clear, sharp words and no one could stop him. We liked the straight talk. Not all of us, but some of us, and those that liked it got their/our way.

But the mainstream media will never celebrate his new-media genius. That's why he had to be a new-media genius to get where he did in the most impressive free-speech achievement in the history of the world. Oh! Suddenly, I am celebrating him. But I'm not mainstream media. I'm new media too. I'm savvy in my own way in my little domain of blogging, and I think I can say from one new-media voice to another: I celebrate you! 

And to those old media people who publicly agonize about the prospect of the new President tweeting: I have seen your phony-baloney worried faces on the news shows...



...  as you confront the serioso question whether Trump's advisers can stop him from tweeting. You are worried about yourselves, and rightly so. And you know damned well you'd have been utterly delighted and overflowing with praise if Barack Obama had tweeted like Donald Trump.

ADDED: Organizing for Action. That sounds familiar. Ah! Here it is. My post from January 18, 2013:
"Obama unveils 'Organizing for Action.'"

I read the Politico headline out loud.

Meade immediately improvises a song, and I have the wit and the skill to transcribe as he sings:
Organize for action
Organize for some action, baby
Organize! Organize!
Organize my organ
Activate my organ for organizing
A little girly action
Organize for action
ADDED: "You in?"
Ha ha. And now, clicking on the Politico link, I see why @BarackObama is such a dead, dull Twitter feed:
President Barack Obama on Friday announced the relaunch of his remaining campaign apparatus as a new tax-exempt group called Organizing for Action that will “play an active role” in “mobilizing around and speaking out in support of important legislation” during his second term.
The tax code lures people into restricting their own speech. Obama let his name appear on a Twitter feed that was doomed to be un-Twitter-y by the need to fit the demands of the IRS. Big Government trips over itself. Sad!

ALSO: I am directed to the Twitter feed @POTUS. This too presents itself as Barack Obama tweeting. I see 3 MLK Day tweets. e.g., "Dr. King and those who marched with him proved that people who love their country can change it. As Americans, we all owe them a great deal." Before that there is a January 12th post expressing pride in the arrival of Obama's autograph on Mars.

There is a January 12th post:
Thank you for everything. My last ask is the same as my first. I'm asking you to believe—not in my ability to create change, but in yours.
Ask not what your President can change for you, ask what you can do for change.

On January 1st, similarly, Barack Obama spoke in vague terms about himself:
It’s been the privilege of my life to serve as your President. I look forward to standing with you as a citizen. Happy New Year everybody.
And, also on New Year's, he approved of himself in a series of tweets like:
From realizing marriage equality to removing barriers to opportunity, we've made history in our work to reaffirm that all are created equal.
I've reviewed this Twitter feed too, and I stand by my position that Barack Obama is not doing anything that I would count as real tweeting. There's no sense that the human being Barack Obama is using Twitter to speak to us directly and to speak clearly in his personal voice. Like @BarackObama, @POTUS feels like banal PR written by some unknown person with an assignment to cause a Twitter presence to exist. 

AND: I've actually followed @POTUS since its inception, so I have seen it come up continually as I read Twitter. It's obviously not made an impression on me as something beyond a generic White House PR feed.

January 16, 2017

The 18 highest ranked comments on the NYT article "Chelsea Manning Describes Bleak Life in a Men’s Prison."

The disjuncture between the NYT and its readers is extreme. 

The highest rated comment is this:
As a physician who has worked with prisoners, what bothers me is how many medical amenities Chelsea is getting compared to the average prisoner. Prisoners show up with horrific late stage disseminated cancers because of staff apathy. If a patient shows up struggling to breathe or talk because there's a laryngeal mass in their hypopharynx closing off their airway and they had to wait 2 years to be seen, why should Chelsea Manning get speech therapy? The system is struggling to have life threatening conditions treated, it is not justified to spend resources on elective therapy.
(According to the article, Chelsea Manning receives "speech therapy to feminize the tone and pitch of her voice.")

Next highest:
Maybe he shouldn't have committed a crime. We're 20 trillion in debt why are we paying for prisoner sex changes. Real vets, who served with honor and distinction, who are wounded need care, can't get it, commit suicide at alarming rates and we waste money on prisoner sex changes. This is insane. What happened to common sense.

"Cobb said the final play was not an actual playcall. Rodgers just told each receiver what to do..."

"... like a kid drawing in the dirt. Seriously."

"It’s very hard to lose weight in the Trump era.... I’m trying so hard to have it not turn into 30 pounds."

"I think it tests our ability to not want to numb out. There’s so many things that are hard to hear every day that you do want to have some Oreos. Like people say, what do you invest in during the Trump era? I feel like, Hostess Cakes. Most of us are just scared and eating ice cream."

Said Judd Apatow. He was talking Maureen Dowd, whom he treated to a meal of "spinach omelets with hash browns and hot sauce that he has picked up after dropping off his daughter at school."

I extract these details from the column because:

1. It's a somewhat charming, self-effacing confession that anyone might make: What's happening in politics seems horrible to me, so I comfort myself with the sweet, creamy foods of childhood.

2. Apatow is a big old powerful movie maker, so why is he being such a big baby? My guess is that his success lies in channeling the mundane reactions of young and powerless people, so it serves him well to relax into immature thinking patterns. It's creative, lucrative work for him. Easy work! What a lucky guy!

3. He's eating Oreos? That's his food reference? Trump owns Oreos foolery:



4. What kind of rich man entertains his NYT interviewer by serving her a take-out spinach omelet with hash browns and hot sauce? Take-out is bad enough, but a take-out omelet? I think an omelet is something you get out of the pan and onto the table in seconds or you just don't serve it at all. And then to make it spinach? What the hell are you trying to say? It would make more sense to serve Oreos and ice cream.

5. Has Maureen Dowd ever indicated her amenability to omelets? Back in February 2010, she forefronted an omelet served to her in a restaurant — so presumably she ordered it — in the presence of Harold Ford Jr. — or maybe it's only what he's eating — and she connected said eggs to the grossness of Harold Ford's feet:
Between bites of an egg-white garden omelet at a bistro in his Union Square neighborhood, Harold Ford Jr. defended himself on pedicures and flip-flops.

“I either run or try to play basketball every day,” he said. “I have severe athlete’s foot — feet. I get a foot scrub out of respect for my wife because getting into bed with what I have when I take my socks off isn’t respectful to anybody.”
I'm not reading that as an OK on omelets. I'm reading that as wafting methanethiol. And that was a high-tone, fresh-cooked, designed-for-a-lady egg-white garden omelet, not something that would be dumped into a styrofoam container to be called back to life with hot sauce.

January 15, 2017

Rockslide on Zion Canyon Scenic Drive.


Photograph by Zion National Park.

That's approximately 200 tons of rocks that slid down on Friday evening.

We'd been thinking of Zion National Park as a good winter road trip destination. We are recalibrating.

Trump has interviewed 11th Circuit Judge William Pryor — one of the candidates on the list for Supreme Court nominees.

David Lat reports and explains why Pryor's chances are so good:
First, Sessions is a major Pryor proponent — and now that Sessions is definitely going to be AG, having killed it at his hearings, his Trumpworld stock is way up and his views enjoy greater sway within the administration. Sessions and Pryor are close friends and have known each for more than 20 years....

Second, the success of Sessions shows that what gets liberals all hot and bothered isn’t necessarily enough to stop a nominee — and this might encourage the Trump Administration to “go bold,” swing for the fences, and put up Pryor. Judge Pryor, more than any other potential Trump nominee, triggers strong opposition from liberal interest groups — civil rights groups, LGBT groups, and especially pro-abortion groups, who loathe his comments about Roe v. Wade (“worst abomination in the history of constitutional law”)....

Judge Pryor is very conservative and very outspoken — but he’s also very smart and a stickler for preparation, and he would likely perform well at confirmation hearings....

"They are the opposition party. I want 'em out of the building. We are taking back the press room."

The possible plan to move the press corps out of the White House press room over to the White House Conference Center or to the Old Executive Office Building.
Reporters have had some sort of workspace at the White House since Teddy Roosevelt's time, but the current press room is an artifact of the Richard Nixon era, the dawn of the symbiosis of the press and the modern presidency. The "room" is actually a space containing work stations and broadcast booths, as well as the briefing area that is so familiar to viewers of presidential news conferences.

For the media, the White House press room—situated on the first floor, in the space between the presidential residence and the West Wing—is not only a convenience, with prime sources just steps away. It is also a symbol of the press' cherished role as representatives of the American people.....
Should they be ousted if they are not playing the role the place supposedly symbolizes? Are they representing us, the People, who, collectively, elected Trump, or are they representing the Democratic Party?

I don't know that the symbolism is what should determine whether the press has that space or some other space, but I don't think the press — with respect to the Trump administration — represents the people. I think the statement "They are the opposition party" is much more accurate. Too bad they did that to themselves. We could use a vigorous, professional press.