Wiretap: Trump may talk tough on China, but Chinese score Tillerson talk a diplomatic win

When Rex Tillerson goes to Beijing, he talks about U.S.-China “mutual respect,” and the Chinese score it as a diplomatic victory.  Words matter. The question now being asked of Tillerson is whether he understood exactly what his words meant in diplomat-ese. Via The Washington Post.

Newly revealed emails shed light on Neil Gorsuch’s role in developing George W. Bush’s signing statement after Congress had limited presidential power on the use of torture.  Via The New York Times.

Neil Gorsuch’s colleague on the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals makes his case to Buzzfeed. Judge Harris Hartz says Gorsuch’s liberal critics misunderstand his record.

Chuck Berry didn’t invent rock ‘n’ roll — no one can really take credit for that — but he almost certainly invented the idea of it. And more than that, he gave it meaning, subtext and context, and he could play a guitar just like ringin’ a bell. Via Slate.

Fifteen essential songs from the man Dylan called the Shakespeare of rock ‘n’ roll. Via The New York Times.

The New York Times obit of Jimmy Breslin, the legendary New York City columnist whose work is the starting point for dozens of columnists who followed.  Breslin on column writing: “”Rage is the only quality that has kept me, or anybody I have ever studied, writing columns in newspapers.”

John Lennon is shot. Breslin, called at home by his editor, gets the cops who drove a dying Lennon to the hospital and then dictates this column on deadline. I don’t know if anyone else could do this, but I can’t think of anyone else who did. Via the New York Daily News. Meanwhile, Newsday offers up a batch of Breslin columns on Donald Trump from the ’90s. Breslin didn’t like him then. He didn’t like him till the day he died. The first column is on how Trump played the tough New York reporters by mastering the art of the return phone call.

One vote, from the Senate parliamentarian, may decide the fate of Trump/Ryancare. Will the bill need 50 Senate votes to pass or 60? Via The Atlantic.

If you were looking for compassion in Donald Trump’s first budget, budget director Mick Mulvaney tells you where you can find it. The compassion, he said, was for Trump’s supporters. Via Politico.

Byron York: How pundits got a critical point of the Trump-Russia connection all wrong. Via the Washington Examiner.

The “Dutch Donald Trump” loses and it may well be a statement on how Europe views Trump. Angela Merkel’s visit seemed to be another. Via The New Yorker.

Stephen Colbert is back at the top of his game, and all it took was a little too much of The Donald. Via Vox.


Photo via chuckberry.com 


  1. Is Berkeley still the bastion of progressive values? Not if you’re homeless. Via The Guardian


    In 2006 Democrat Senators Barack Obama—yes, that Barack Obama—-Joe Biden, Charles Schumer and Hillary Clinton supported the Secure Fence Act which approved the construction of 700 miles of double border fencing along specific sections of the U.S.-Mexico border. Via The Boston Globe


    Today, Senate Minority Leader Schumer (D-NY) is threatening a government shutdown over funding for the building of a wall on the US-Mexico border. Via The New York Times


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