Even Mike Pence can’t whitewash the concentration camps

Migration

Though he certainly tried, even Mike Pence couldn’t completely manage to whitewash[1] conditions in the concentration camps.[2]

The vice president’s office said it specifically instructed the Border Patrol agents not to clean up or sanitize the facility beyond what is routine so the American people could see the overcrowding and scarce resources, like lack of beds, and see how serious the crisis is at the border.[3]

But,

While CNN was told by a [Customs and Border Patrol] official at the Clint facility the environment was the same on Wednesday [June 26] as it was last week when legal monitors visited, a CBP source with firsthand knowledge of the facility said, “Typical. The agency prepped for you guys.” The source added, “It’s a never-ending cat and mouse game.”[4]

Of course they “prepped” the facilities for Pence’s visit. No assertion to the contrary can be considered even remotely credible. And even if they were spotless and even if everybody had a king-sized bed to sleep on and even if families were not separated and even if the toilets were made of gold and even if butlers were serving sparking water in silver chalices, they would still be concentration camps, as I wrote earlier:

Finally, I guess I need to dredge out that definition of a concentration camp again:

a place where large numbers of people (such as prisoners of war, political prisoners, refugees, or the members of an ethnic or religious minority) are detained or confined under armed guard —used especially in reference to camps created by the Nazis in World War II for the internment and persecution of Jews and other prisoners.[5]

Notice that it contains no reference to the conditions under which human beings are being held. These centers are concentration camps no matter how much money you throw at them.[6]

Associated Press, “Trump asks Supreme Court to unfreeze border wall money,” Washington Post, July 12, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/courts_law/trump-asks-supreme-court-to-unfreeze-border-wall-money/2019/07/12/d865c8ea-a4f6-11e9-a767-d7ab84aef3e9_story.html

Josh Dawsey and Colby Itkowitz, “‘This is tough stuff’: At Texas detention facility, Pence sees hundreds of migrants crammed with no beds,” Washington Post, July 12, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/pence-tours-detention-facilities-at-the-border-defends-administrations-treatment-of-migrants/2019/07/12/993f54e0-a4bc-11e9-b8c8-75dae2607e60_story.html


Nancy Pelosi

Eugene Scott, “The bad optics of Pelosi vs. the ‘newly elected women of color,’” Washington Post, July 11, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2019/07/11/demoralizing-disrespectful-ocasio-cortez-pressley-pelosi-singling-out-women-color/


Joe Biden

Branko Marcetic, “Joe Biden Didn’t Just Vote for the Iraq Invasion—He Helped Lead the March to War,” In These Times, July 8, 2019, http://inthesetimes.com/features/joe-biden-iraq-war-vote-democratic-primary-2020.html


Tropical Storm Barry

This 72-hour gif (allow plenty of time for these large, animated images to load) is as of about 8:00 am Eastern. You can see the storm organize itself.
gm
And here, as of about 10:00 pm Eastern:
gm-2019-07-13-22
Jason Samenow, “Barry heads inland with high risk of flash flooding in Louisiana,” Washington Post, July 13, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/07/13/barry-predicted-strike-louisiana-hurricane-saturday-with-excessive-rainfall-threat/


  1. [1]Josh Dawsey and Colby Itkowitz, “‘This is tough stuff’: At Texas detention facility, Pence sees hundreds of migrants crammed with no beds,” Washington Post, July 12, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/pence-tours-detention-facilities-at-the-border-defends-administrations-treatment-of-migrants/2019/07/12/993f54e0-a4bc-11e9-b8c8-75dae2607e60_story.html
  2. [2]Priscilla Alvarez, “Lawmakers, including Ocasio-Cortez, lash out over conditions following border facility tours,” CNN, July 2, 2019, https://www.cnn.com/2019/07/01/politics/alexandria-ocasio-cortez-clint-texas-facility/index.html; Caitlin Dickerson, “‘There Is a Stench’: No Soap and Overcrowding in Detention Centers for Migrant Children,” New York Times, June 21, 2019, https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/21/us/migrant-children-border-soap.html; Adam Harris, “An Astonishing Government Report on Conditions at the Border,” Atlantic, July 3, 2019, https://www.theatlantic.com/family/archive/2019/07/government-report-details-inhumane-conditions-migrant-facilities/593242/; Miriam Jordan, “Judge Orders Swift Action to Improve Conditions for Migrant Children in Texas,” New York Times, June 29, 2019, https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/29/us/migrant-children-detention-texas.html; Alejandro Lazo and Jacob Gershman, “Lawsuit Alleges Government Mistreatment of Migrant Children,” Wall Street Journal, June 27, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/lawsuit-alleges-government-mistreatment-of-migrant-children-11561608969; Sam Levin, “‘Happy hunting!’ Immigration agents swapped cheery messages about raids, records reveal,” Guardian, July 3, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/jul/03/ice-us-immigration-messages-raids; Katie Mettler, Mike DeBonis, and Reis Thebault, “Border agents confiscated lawmakers’ phones. Joaquin Castro captured photo and video anyway,” Washington Post, July 2, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2019/07/02/ocasio-cortez-says-dispute-with-border-patrol-agents-started-after-one-tried-take-stealth-selfie/; Geneva Sands and Nick Valencia, “2nd Customs and Border Protection-connected secret Facebook group shows mocking images,” CNN, July 5, 2019, https://www.cnn.com/2019/07/05/politics/cbp-second-facebook-group-images/index.html; Jacob Soboroff and Julia Ainsley, “Migrant kids in overcrowded Arizona border station allege sex assault, retaliation from U.S. agents,” NBC News, July 9, 2019, https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/immigration/migrant-kids-overcrowded-arizona-border-station-allege-sex-assault-retaliation-n1027886
  3. [3]Josh Dawsey and Colby Itkowitz, “‘This is tough stuff’: At Texas detention facility, Pence sees hundreds of migrants crammed with no beds,” Washington Post, July 12, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/pence-tours-detention-facilities-at-the-border-defends-administrations-treatment-of-migrants/2019/07/12/993f54e0-a4bc-11e9-b8c8-75dae2607e60_story.html
  4. [4]Priscilla Alvarez, “Lawmakers, including Ocasio-Cortez, lash out over conditions following border facility tours,” CNN, July 2, 2019, https://www.cnn.com/2019/07/01/politics/alexandria-ocasio-cortez-clint-texas-facility/index.html
  5. [5]Meriam-Webster, “https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/concentration%20camp,” n.d., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/concentration%20camp
  6. [6]David Benfell, “Neoliberals gotta be neoliberals,” Irregular Bullshit, June 29, 2019, https://disunitedstates.com/2019/06/29/neoliberals-gotta-be-neoliberals/

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