Live Blog

Here is your live blog for the day.

Good Friday morning. TGIF!

Here is what's on the president's agenda today:

  • The president participates in a signing ceremony for S. 756, “First Step Act” and H.R. 6964, “Juvenile Justice Reform Act”
  • President Trump participates in a signing ceremony for H.R. 7213, “The Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction Act”

I have a condensed version of the Briefing for you this morning.

The House approved a bill with $5B for border funding; now it goes to the Senate. A very small part of gov't could shut down if the Senate doesn't sign and no one will notice

House approves spending bill with $5.7B for border wall

Fundraiser To Build Trump’s Border Wall Exceeds $10 Million

Border wall GoFundMe may need to issue refunds after millions raised

‘I’m okay with a shutdown’: Inside the chaos of the House GOP’s last days

Trump is 'throwing a temper tantrum': Chuck Schumer has some thoughts about the president's threat to shut down the government

Trump wants to pull out troops from Syria/Afghanistan, Mattis resigns, everyone freaks out

Pelosi: I am shaken by resignation of Mattis

Of course. Senate Dem calls on Mattis to testify following resignation

McConnell ‘distressed’ over Mattis’ resignation

STUNNING!! Jim Mattis' resignation letter is an absolutely stunning rejection of Trumpism

Trump's move to pull US troops out of Syria was reportedly the final straw for Mattis

Trump administration planning to cut number of US troops in Afghanistan by half

Historical picture of the day:

On Dec. 21, 1988, Pan Am Flight 103 from London's Heathrow International Airport to New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport was destroyed and the remains landed in and around the town of Lockerbie, Scotland. Forensic experts determined that plastic explosive had been detonated in the Boeing 747-121 forward cargo hold. The death toll was 270 people from 21 countries, including 11 people in the town of Lockerbie. (Ap Photo)

Other morsels:

U.S. to send migrants back to Mexico to wait out asylum requests

Ex-Senate aide gets 2 months in prison for lying to FBI

What is going on with this? The tips on Hershey’s Kisses are missing and bakers are not happy

‘We Have Turned Away From God’: Police Department Says Embrace of Satan Caused Increase in Killings

Rapper Jeezy's son slashed in the face with a knife during a deadly encounter

At least they are consistent. Planned Parenthood and others respond to accusations that they mistreated pregnant employees

Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker won't recuse himself from Mueller probe: Source

And that's all I've got, now go beat back the angry mob!

Debra: I see the Laughingstock of the Intelligence Community, the Klown Prince of Langley, and the single biggest embarrassment to Irish-Americans everywhere, John Brennan, is at it again. He's a joke, of course, and has been for decades, which is one of the reasons Obama picked him to run the most liberal (and consistently mistaken) institution in Washington, the CIA. Kennedy was right about the Agency after it steered him so badly wrong at the Bay of Pigs: it should have been smashed and scattered to the four winds. The combination of Ivy League arrogance, three-martini lunches, the residual influence of Wild Bill Donovan's OSS, which never met a stupid human trick (exploding cigars, anyone?) it didn't want to try, has resulted the counter-productive kluge we have today, and is one of the principal reasons our foreign policy is so god-awful. When a spy agency still can't decide between Nosenko and Golitsyn, and has been penetrated by Soviet intelligence repeatedly as a result, you've got a useless bunch of spooks.

Forget Syria and Afghanistan -- here's a real problem:

Bad kisses sound like a problem you haven’t dealt with since your teenage years, but they’re a serious concern right now for bakers who are accusing candy maker Hershey of selling its signature chocolate Kisses with broken off tips.

The issue apparently initially came to light thanks to members of the Facebook group The Wedding Cookie Table Community. The page’s Pittsburgh-based founder Laura Magone told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that a fellow baker first pointed out the problem over two weeks ago. But things got even more bizarre when Magone called to complain: “Hershey has told people on this page (including me today) they are intentionally breaking off the tips of the iconic American Hershey kiss at the factory so the tips don't break off in transit — this makes no sense,” Magone wrote on Facebook. She told the Post-Gazette that answer “doesn’t pass the smell test,” and urged other members of the group to also call and complain.

Meanwhile, in the days since, images and accusations of tipless Kisses have been everywhere — not only in other posts on The Wedding Cookie Table Community page, but also on other social media sites like Twitter. The fate of the small chocolate candy and its missing tips has become a bit of a media sensation.

What would we do without the media? Meanwhile, Hershey says it's investigating. Maybe it's witchcraft.

As to demonstrate the proof of my contention that every single news story -- or gardening tip, concert review, or restaurant recommendation -- must include a reference to Donald Trump, I give you this:

Witchcraft moves to the mainstream in America as Christianity declines - and has Trump in its sights

Witchcraft is thriving in the US, with an estimated 1.5 million Americans now identifying as witches - more than the total number of Presbyterians. As Christianity declines across the country, paganism has swung to the mainstream, with witchcraft paraphernalia for sale on every high street and practises normalised across popular culture. In the past two years, it has also become darkly politicised.

Dakota Bracciale, a 29-year-old transgender/queer witch and co-owner of Catland Books and witch shop in Brooklyn, is pleased with the outcome of the ritual hex placed on US Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh in October. The curse, carried out from Catland Books, was well attended by witches, atheists ad humanists - and was followed around the country on social media.

Ah, but which witch placed the hex on Ruth Bader Ginsburg, whose tenure on the Supreme Court is now drawing inexorably to its close?

Millennials, says Bracciale, are looking for spiritualism outside traditional religion. “The hex centres on the notion that we live in a universe of chaos, entropy, destruction, death, decay with a final ending of oblivion - scientists are telling us. So the witch does everything for themselves - there is no other help in this universe of decay and chaos. If you don’t get in the driver’s seat things will just get worse,” the witch said.

Bracciale is “absolutely” willing to cause physical harm through a hex - “no issue with that”. And while Bracciale would have been just as pleased with the new Supreme Court Justice’s death, resignation or physical disfigurement, the main goal of the Kavanaugh hex, and the three hexes on President Donald Trump from Catland Books this summer, was to “let them be exposed for who they are - especially as impotent men”.

As I've chronicled in both The Devil's Pleasure Palace and The Fiery Angel, the destruction of religion and the view of life as blood, offal, and death is characteristic of the Frankfurt School of philosophers and of the satanic in general. God desires souls; Satan wants human corpses.

Is the always loathsome John Brennan calling for some kind of insurrection here?

The man is despicable.