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Showing posts from March, 2017

Maybe We Should Lose Sandwich Joe

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Patton Oswalt

Tech Today

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So, I needed to clean the ol' iMac today, and I can do that best by standing behind it. This makes for less wear and tear on my wrists and arms, but since I have to look around the side or over the top, it's hard to tell the difference between what's there legitimately and what needs to be gone.

Thinking it was a bit of snot or phlegm or mayonnaise or whatever, I just spent close to a full minute trying to scrub the cursor off my computer screen.

It occurs to me that I may be spending way too much time calling other people stoopid.


Today's GIF

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Today's Resistance

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The GOP fucks us over by knocking down FCC privacy regs, so here's one small thing we can do to fuck 'em back.

Every day, I go to Google to look something up - OK OK, every day, I go to Google about 40-leven times to look something up.

But every time, before I do anything else, I Google these:

Fuck Comcast
Fuck AT&T
Fuck the GOP
Fuck American oligarchy
Fuck Google Analytics
Fuck autoplay video ads

And I do it a dozen or more times each. Once you type it in and hit ENTER, all you have to do is click in the search box and hit ENTER again.

The Google Bomb works - ask Rick Santorum.

Takes maybe 90 seconds for the whole thing.

Show your discontentment. Fight back.

Revisiting

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John Oliver from 2014


A Closer Look

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Seth Meyers

Today's Tweet

There's so much nepotism in the White House that Trump might resign to spend less time with his family.

#TrumpRussia@realDonaldTrump — Tea Pain (@TeaPainUSA) March 31, 2017

Today's Tweet

I have no idea if Trump campaign colluded w Russia. But if they didnt, what else could possibly be worth this amount of hamhanded deception? — Derek Thompson (@DKThomp) March 30, 2017

Nunes Is Dirty

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It's possible Devin Nunes really thinks he's doing what we pay him to do - and it is possible he actually is doing what we pay him to do, even as he does it in a very unorthodox and troubling way.

It's also possible I can make the jack of spades jump out of a brand new deck of cards and squirt cider in your ear. (with apologies to Sky Masterson's dad for turning that one around)

NYT:

WASHINGTON — A pair of White House officials played a role in providing Representative Devin Nunes of California, the Republican chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, with the intelligence reports that showed President Trump and his associates were incidentally swept up in foreign surveillance by American spy agencies.

The revelation that White House officials assisted in the disclosure of the intelligence reports — which Mr. Nunes then discussed with President Trump — is likely to fuel criticism that the intelligence chairman has been too eager to do the bidding of the Trump administ…

Samantha Bee

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Keith

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It Gets Worse

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The Daddy State approacheth.

“A computer lets you make more mistakes faster than any other invention with the possible exceptions of handguns and Tequila.” 
--Mitch Ratcliffe
Quincy Larson at Free Code Camp:
Soon every mistake you’ve ever made online will not only be available to your internet service provider (ISP) — it will be available to any corporation or foreign government who wants to see those mistakes.

Thanks to last week’s US Senate decision (update March 28: and today’s House decision), ISPs can sell your entire web browsing history to literally anyone without your permission. The only rules that prevented this are all being repealed, and won’t be reinstated any time soon (it would take an act of congress).

ISPs can also sell any information they want from your online activity and mobile app usage — financial information, medical information, your children’s information, your social security number — even the contents of your emails.

They can even sell your geolocation information…

Today's Tweet

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, over.

This is the weirdest thing I've ever seen pic.twitter.com/EF6Hk3Y3ai — Ali Segel (@OnlineAlison) March 27, 2017

Nature Is Kinda Scary Sometimes

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It's a sea slug.



Melibe viridis

Today's Pix

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Keith

Color Me Unsurprised

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...again.

The Atlantic:

In 1990, President George H. W. Bush raised taxes, and GDP growth increased over the next five years. In 1993, President Bill Clinton raised the top marginal tax rate, and GDP growth increased over the next five years. In 2001 and 2003, President Bush cut taxes, and we faced a disappointing expansion followed by a Great Recession.

Does this story prove that raising taxes helps GDP? No. Does it prove that cutting taxes hurts GDP? No.

But it does suggest that there is a lot more to an economy than taxes, and that slashing taxes is not a guaranteed way to accelerate economic growth.
And there's still that nagging little finding from years ago - repeatedly reaffirmed to reach or exceed the 95% certainty threshold - that for every $1 solely in tax cuts, we get about 59¢ in Net Economic Stimulus and for every $1 solely in direct government spending (eg: infrastructure) we can count on $1.19 in Net Economic Stimulus.
Call me crazy, but if my broker comes to me trying to…

Today's Tweet

Good thing Obamacare wasn't repealed. Now all these Trump team members can get treatment for their tragic memory loss. #TrumpRussia — Tea Pain (@TeaPainUSA) March 27, 2017

Professional Left Podcast

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Donald Trump had a very bad week. Jury is still out as to whether it was worse for Devin Nunes and Paul Ryan.  Where's Vladimir?  Local News connects nearly always to national politics, and vice versa.



The Professional Left Amazon link

Yow

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45* lies. A lot. Everybody knows that, and about 20% of us are still with him, while the rest of us are wondering what it's gonna take to peel the rubes away.

Prob'ly not likely to happen.

Scientific American, working out the differences between White Lies, Black Lies, and Blue Lies:

Blue lies are a different category altogether, simultaneously selfish and beneficial to others—but only to those who belong to your group. As University of Toronto psychologist Kang Lee explains, blue lies fall in between generous white lies and selfish “black” ones. “You can tell a blue lie against another group,” he says, which makes it simultaneously selfless and self-serving. “For example, you can lie about your team's cheating in a game, which is antisocial, but helps your team.”

- and -

Around the world, children grow up hearing stories of heroes who engage in deception and violence on behalf of their in-groups. In Star Wars, for example, Princess Leia lies about the location of the “secret r…

Today's Atheism

If every trace of any single religion were wiped out and nothing were passed on, it would never be created exactly that way again. There might be some other nonsense in its place, but not that exact nonsense.

If all of science were wiped out, it would still be true and someone would find a way to figure it all out again.
--Penn Jillette

Michael Franks

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On a dreary dripping Monday

The Art Of Tea --Michael Franks


Fucked Up Bigly

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Via Joy Reid on Twitter (@JoyAnnReid):


Not a whole lot of the Steele Dossier has been officially corroborated yet, but some pretty solid suspicions are being reinforced almost every day.
And some of the players still seem to be more or less unaware of just how enormous this thing could get.

Mr Jefferson Speaks

"The most effectual engines for [pacifying a nation] are the public papers... [A despotic] government always [keeps] a kind of standing army of newswriters who, without any regard to truth or to what should be like truth, [invent] and put into the papers whatever might serve the ministers. This suffices with the mass of the people who have no means of distinguishing the false from the true paragraphs of a newspaper." 
--Thomas Jefferson to GK van Hogendorp, 1785

"I am persuaded myself that the good sense of the people will always be found to be the best army. They may be led astray for a moment, but will soon correct themselves. The people are the only censors of their governors: and even their errors will tend to keep these to the true principles of their institution. To punish these errors too severely would be to suppress the only safeguard of the public liberty. The way to prevent these irregular interpositions of the people is to give them full information of their a…

Today's Tweet

rarely does the headline get weirder *after* the nudity, drugs, and murder pic.twitter.com/XGUh6b43TE — Emma Baccellieri (@emmabaccellieri) March 23, 2017

That Pesky Constitution

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Nikolas Bowie at Take Care

In its first fifty days, the Trump administration has done a magnificent job—the best job—teaching Americans about the Constitution. Who among us could distinguish an emolument from a peppermint before 2016? In that spirit, as we learn more about the employees President Trump has hired to run the executive branch, it’s worth asking whether his administration is violating another under-the-radar provision: The Appointments Clause.

The Appointments Clause is the one that requires the president to get the “Advice and Consent of the Senate” before he can hire certain “Officers of the United States.” It’s the reason we know what Betsy DeVos thinks about bears or that the Russian ambassador is easily forgettable. The eighteenth-century authors of the clause anticipated that no president could run the executive branch by himself, but they wanted a “check” to ensure that he didn’t appoint “unfit characters,” “family connection[s],” or “obsequious instruments of his pl…

Today's Quote

Golden Oldie

Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give the appearance of solidity to pure wind.
--George Orwell

Trump Redacted

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Jezebel:
President Trump recently participated in an interview with Time Magazine’s Michael Scherer for a cover story about his relationship with the truth. Predictably, this conversation really tested the limits of irony.In the full transcript of the interview published by Time, Trump lies a lot, says a number of half-true things, does not admit he was incorrect to link Ted Cruz’s father with Lee Harvey Oswald, foists responsibility for his inaccuracies onto media reports that he misrepresents, says the word “Brexit” 11 times, and forms sentences like “Brussels, I said, Brussels is not Brussels.” But, listen, some of it was fine! In the transcript below, we have redacted everything that is not verifiably true. What remains is everything the president said that is definitely true.

Today's Tweet

I'm so old, I remember when Devin Nunes called @justinamash "al-Qaida's best friend in Congress." This Devin Nunes: pic.twitter.com/xXA0fEcbjJ — Howie Klein (@downwithtyranny) March 23, 2017

Today's Pix

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Tiny Desk

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Tedeschi Trucks Band

"Just As Strange"
"Don't Know What It Is"
"Anyhow"

Samantha Bee

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Taibbi

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Is it possible Matt could be losing the battle he's constantly fighting against having a solid opinion on anything other than how fucked up it all is?

Well, no - he gets about half-way before sinking back into his comfort zone of "Yeah but the Democrats".

But still, it's a pretty good synopsis. (Rolling Stone)
The impact of the DeVos implosion was twofold. First, the Democrats realized they could and should fight back. Second, Republicans found the downside of party-line votes. Many received a torrent of abuse from constituents who demanded they vote DeVos out. "I have heard from thousands, truly, thousands of Alaskans who have shared their concerns about Mrs. DeVos," said Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski, who dealt with protests outside her Alaska office and later estimated that 30,000 constituents called to complain. Murkowski announced that she would pull her vote for DeVos, as did Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine. A senator voting against his or her ow…

Tweet From Yesterday

BIG: Rep. Schiff confirms that he's seen evidence of Trump/Russia collusion that's "more than circumstantial."
pic.twitter.com/DPQ3Zu8Yxr — molzy (@bitchyologist) March 22, 2017

Today's GIF

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Speaking Of 45*

I have never made but one prayer to God, a very short one: 'O Lord make my enemies ridiculous.' And God granted it.
--Voltaire
hat tip = David Ferguson, Raw Story

Today's Today

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FDR signed the Beer and Wine Revenue Act on March 22, 1933. 

Of course, there was always a way around prohibition if you were properly connected. The more things change.



American History Museum on Twitter

Yay Tweety

Chris Matthews gets up on his hind legs and starts talkin' sense.

And we are left to wonder a coupla things - whether or not Phil Griffin knows about this, and if we missed the freeze warning for hell.

The Turnaraound

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WaPo:

The 2016 election was just a month away when Steve Curtis, a conservative radio host and former Colorado Republican Party chairman, devoted an entire episode of his morning talk show to the heated topic of voter fraud.

“It seems to me,” Curtis said in the 42-minute segment, “that virtually every case of voter fraud I can remember in my lifetime was committed by Democrats.”

On Tuesday, Colorado prosecutors threw a wrench into that already dubious theory, accusing Curtis of voter fraud for allegedly filling out and mailing in his ex-wife’s 2016 ballot for president, Denver’s Fox affiliate reported.

Curtis, 57, was charged in Weld County District Court with one count of misdemeanor voter fraud and one count of forgery, a Class 5 felony, according to local media.

The case is the only voter fraud investigation related to the 2016 election that has resulted in criminal charges in the state, the Colorado secretary of state’s office told Denver’s ABC affiliate.
In sales, it's called The T…

Today's Tweet

Al Franken v. Gorsuch is worth watching

“I had a career in identifying absurdity. And I know it when I see it.”https://t.co/cwKFUkk0oHpic.twitter.com/wA4b3KoVNR — Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) March 21, 2017

Keith

NEW VIDEO: 60 days in, let's face it. By his own metrics, his people are idiots, and @realDonaldTrump is a Loser. pic.twitter.com/HSGzo1aiyj — Keith Olbermann (@KeithOlbermann) March 21, 2017

The Onion

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WASHINGTON—Rushing toward the president as he pressed the eight-inch bit into his temple, several White House aides managed to wrestle a drill from Donald Trump’s hand Monday while he attempted to remove Obama’s listening device from his skull. “Obama implanted a microphone inside my head to record everything I say!” Trump reportedly shouted shortly before three White House staffers pinned him to the floor and pried apart his fingers to seize the power tool. “You don’t understand, he can hear everything we’re saying! Obama can even hear my thoughts! I have to get it out! I can feel it! I can feel it! I can feel it!” At press time, staffers were panicking after Trump locked himself in the bathroom and began cutting his stomach open with a razor blade in an attempt to find the tracking chip he said The New York Times had put in his food.

Today's Tweet

Comey just confirmed both political parties were hacked in 2016 by Russians—but that only Democratic info was released. — Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) March 20, 2017

Take a candidate we've been conditioned to dislike - for a good 25 years now - and just play up everything negative even more. Hammer on it night-n-day. It's especially effective when "the dirt" just happens to include the magic word "email", which of course links nicely to the more recent negative inferences about Hillary that were set in place over the last 5 years or so.

Eventually you can move the needle enough to make a difference.

Because advertising works. The world is being run by some pretty smart people (current POTUS notwithstanding), and smart people don't spend $500 Billion a year on shit that don't work.

Keith

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Tiny Desk

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Corrinne Bailey Rae



She needs a really great producer, and some better backing vocals, but it sounds promising.

Ignore The Obvious

The house is burning, Trump is casually strolling away carrying matches and an empty gas can, and the GOP congress critters are busy bitchin' about who called the fire department.

(more or less - Garry Kasparov, via Twitter)

Today's GIF

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Sean Spicer preparing for the press briefing

Dots

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The federal budget is a statement of our values. And our values are now nothing but the kind of Friedmanesque "Rational Self-Interest" that says as long as I get what I want everybody else can take a flyin' fuck at a rollin' donut.

John Oliver:



This is not a philosophy of governance. This is a fucking robbery.

Selective Quote

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"When force is the standard, the murderer wins over the pickpocket. And then that society vanishes, in a spread of ruins and slaughter. Do you wish to know whether that day is coming? Watch money. Money is the barometer of a society’s virtue. When you see that trading is done, not by consent, but by compulsion – when you see that in order to produce, you need to obtain permission from men who produce nothing – when you see that money is flowing to those who deal, not in goods, but in favors – when you see that men get richer by graft and by pull than by work, and your laws don’t protect you against them, but protect them against you – when you see corruption being rewarded and honesty becoming a self-sacrifice – you may know that your society is doomed. Money is so noble a medium that it does not compete with guns and it does not make terms with brutality. It will not permit a country to survive as half-property, half-loot."--Franciso D'Anconia, Atlas Shrugged
The quote i…

Bonnet Chronicles

WATCH: This Bonnet Chronicles video about Ben Carson has me laughing so hard I'm crying. So good!! https://t.co/zOinFUazCkpic.twitter.com/sF9FuD36Z2 — Yashar (@yashar) March 19, 2017
Tami Roman

Art Oddities

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Carlos Enriquez Gomez ( 1900 - 1957)




Zappa

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Uncle Remus --Frank Zappa


Wo, are we movin' too slow?
Have you seen us,
Uncle Remus . . .
We look pretty sharp in these clothes (yes, we do)
Unless we get sprayed with a hose
It ain't bad in the day
If they squirt it your way
'Cept in the winter, when it's froze
An' it's hard if it hits
On yer nose
On yer nose

Just keep yer nose
To the grindstone, they say
Will that redeem us,
Uncle Remus . . .
I can't wait till my Fro is full-grown
I'll just throw 'way my Doo-Rag at home
I'll take a drive to BEVERLY HILLS
Just before dawn
An' knock the little jockeys
Off the rich people's lawn
An' before they get up
I'll be gone, I'll be gone
Before they get up
I'll be knocking the jockeys off the lawn
Down in the dew

Written by Frank Vincent Zappa, George Duke • Copyright © Universal Music Publishing Group

Yikes

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From the front page of the Chicago Tribune yesterday:



So, there is actually a President Bartlet, and they call her Chancellor Merkel.
Angela Merkel has an undergrad in Physics & Physical Chemistry (1978 - Leipzig U), and a doctorate in Quantum Chemistry (1986 - German Academy of Science, Berlin).
Donald Trump can't even spell PhD.

A Climate Timeline

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This is from Grist - I tried to capture the whole thing, but it's not working so you should go to Grist.org and take a look. Do that now.