Webtacular World Issue # 165, January 29, 2017

Greetings Webtaculators. A few wise words from my wife before we get going this week:

“Our new president seems to be trying to set a record for executive actions (a dozen so far in his first 6 days in office – 2 of those days were weekend days, so really we are looking at a dozen or so orders in his first 4 days), and despite attempts to chill freedom of the press, you should hear about them.

These orders will deeply harm causes near to my heart and will negatively impact a majority, if not all Americans. They include but are not limited to: ACA-rollback with no actual replacement plan in place from the president or congress, EPA freeze on communications and federal grants, immigration and deportations mandates (plus that damn stupid wall), the gag-rule on international family planning/pro-choice information and services (if you think this isn’t a bellwether for where this administration is going, especially with a Supreme Court vacancy, boy do I have a bridge in Brooklyn to sell you), and of course his first-ever-action in office: the rescinding of the mortgage-cut rate which makes it harder for first time home-buyers to purchase a home.

These orders don’t even take in to account his selections for cabinet and agency positions that are either incredibly inexperienced, diametrically opposed to the the agencies they are expected to lead, or, in most cases both. These agencies include the Department of Education, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Department of Labor, and the Secretary of the Treasury (you might also want to review his picks for the department of energy, who four years ago couldn’t remember the name of the department but knew he wanted it abolished, the head of the department of small business administration, Linda McMahon – one of the heads of the WWE, and of course, President Trump’s pick for Attorney General – a position that is supposed to uphold the laws of our land and act as the litigative arm of the executive branch, Jeff Sessions – a man deemed too racist by 1980s standard to hold a federal judgeship. Don’t forget, all of these agencies have A TON of autonomy to pass regulations (i.e. rules that have the nearly have the same force as law passed by your democratically elected officials) and the free reign to not enforce laws or pass regulations as they see fit, as they mostly answer to the president as long as they act within some broad parameters of congress and public hearing processes.

These executive orders and nominations also do not take in to account bills introduced by the House and Senate in the new term. They include the removal of the United States from the United Nations (an organization we were instrumental in founding after WWII, and after we had previously backed out the League of Nations to pretty terrible results) and restrictions on women’s reproductive freedoms. And remember, one of the first things the Republican-controlled congress tried to do was dismantle the congressional ethics oversight committee.

So if I get more vocal because the democracy I was raised in- that used to believe and at least attempted to promote that men and women, from any race or religion, or sexual or gender orientation could participate fully In our system, has been downgraded from “full” to “flawed” democracy since President Trump’s swearing-in because of the actions he and our congress (and many state and local law makers) have taken, you are really going to have to excuse me.”

I should probably just let her do this going forward. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Week One
Why: Because this presidency is farce. For anyone who voted for Trump because you thought he should be given a chance, well, this is what you get. I am also grieving for our Muslim brothers and sisters who were attacked this evening while praying in a mosque in Quebec.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Everything Is Political
Why: Because when a company’s CEO is an economic adviser to a president, the company opens itself to political protest.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (6 min. read)
What: Lawyers For Immigrants
Why: Because I am in awe of the work many of my classmates, friends, and colleagues performed this weekend. Trump’s ban on immigration is dangerous.

SCIENCE THING OF THE WEEK (1 min. read)
What: T Minus 2.5
Why: Because the Doomsday Clock, a measure of the health and safety of the Earth, just moved forward by 30 seconds.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: 2000’s Forever
Why: Because Federer defeated Nadal for likely the last time in their storied rivalry.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Everything Is Political Again
Why: Because although Hollywood has always been seen as political, it rarely speaks out so vehemently. Also, the Stranger Things acceptance speech was wonderful.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (8 min. read)
What: Rock On
Why: Because the Japandroids’ music is infectious.

PHOTOGRAPHY THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Protests, Again
Why: Because apparently these are going to happen all the time now.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: 1984 2017
Why: Because George Orwell’s masterpiece is a bestseller again, for some reason.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (10 min. read)
What: Resident Evil Revival
Why: Because the newest Resident Evil game is brings the series back to its horror roots, and it is wonderfully terrifying.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: Burninating All The Peasants; Trumpover; MailShrimp / KaleLimp / JailBlimp
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: Poster Board
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

Webtacularly yours,
Brian
Managing Editor, Webtacular World
The Internet You Didn’t Know You Needed™

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