First thought: Is Paul Ryan departure the prelude to a major November draining of the real Washington swamp?
Second thought: Now that the elite tax cut is enacted, major damage done to socially responsible agencies [EPA, consumer protection, scientific research, etc.] and the massive deficit [in midst of solid expansion] ensuring that no progressive legislation can be contemplated, is the hard right republican agenda complete? Generals and troops can now return home.
Third thought: Lapham review essay on David Callahan’s world of philanthropy “that constitutes over 5 percent of GDP and 10 percent of private-sector employment but whose influence is barely registered by journalists and the public.” “There are now more than ninety thousand private foundations, whose assets total $700 billion.” “In a 1999 report, Callahan revealed that conservative donors had, over a decade, quietly transferred $1 billion to twenty right-wing think tanks.” In the eighteen subsequent years, it is certain that these “think” tanks have been lavishly funded. Jane Mayer tells the appalling, frightening story in Dark Money of how the Koch brothers “weaponized” philanthropy to obstruct and rollback every legislative accomplishment of the Obama presidency.