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Showing posts from August, 2017

Today's Tweet

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Reaffirming the reason we hear (mostly) "conservatives" constantly harping, "Ya cain't fix stoopid" - because so many of them have firsthand knowledge and direct experience.

Three days after Hurricane Katrina: Where was Michelle Obama? pic.twitter.com/hjwhsxHdq5 — Bikergirl4trump (@TrumpResponders) February 23, 2017

Troll Big Or Stay Home

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WaPo, Michael Cavna:

At first glance, you might not notice. There’s the tangerine-tinted skin. The buttercream half-bouffante. The long red tie. Everything looks like standard-issue Trump caricature — till you get to the teeth. They jut out like a rodent’s, as if for chewing up opponents or gnawing on one’s own political tail.

This, standing 15 feet tall and puffed out by hot air, is Trump Rat. And he is set to make his Washington debut come lunchtime Tuesday on the green of Dupont Circle, for a two-day engagement a short hop north of the White House.

You Know It's Likely

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In some ways it's kind of a cheap shot. At least it's a little too easy and obvious.

But I think we know that a year from now - even tho' a lot of 'em will still be getting payouts from Treasury - because it'll still be pretty fucked up down there - somebody will shake that Etch-A-Sketch and jagoffs like these guys will be right back at it.
And I might as well put my cynicism to work here and make the point that lots of cronies are about to get rich(er) because of their sudden realization that they have a burning passion to provide "relief goods" to all those poor innocent victims.

Today's Tweet

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There is literally an archived Trump-as-hypocrite Tweet for every occasion.

Not only giving out money, but Obama will be seen today standing in water and rain like he is a real President --- don't fall for it. — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 30, 2012

But Then We're Stuck With Pence

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Pinch-faced blue-nosed purity warrior - 2005 edition:

Video: “Katrina breaks my heart...but we must not let Katrina break the bank for our children & grandchildren” Mike Pence-2005 #ImpeachTrumppic.twitter.com/SxmT8NGEA7 — Scott Dworkin (@funder) August 29, 2017

It seems like they're just being assholes - and they are - but it goes beyond that.

I think they can't stand the thought that we'll notice how well good old-fashioned Keynesian economics works when you put it in action.

If they go ahead and do the funding for a proper recovery after a natural disaster, then they prove the real value of Direct Spending Stimulus - and they hate having to admit that.

They hate it so much that they'll cut that direct stimulus somewhere else - as a political offset.

So they're not "offsetting the spending" by saving money elsewhere; they're offsetting the benefits in Houston (eg) by creating damage in places like Des Moines or Omaha.

The cynicism required for that ki…

Keith

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Back towards Righteous Preciousness

Another Today's Tweet

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Read the whole thread (15 parts)

I was the judicial clerk for the judge in the original Apraio trial. I have some thoughts on the pardon. (1/15) — Andrew Case (@AClaudeCase) August 29, 2017

OK For Me But Not For Thee

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Pegged in the red.

WaPo Fact Checking - Sandy vs Harvy:


“The problem with that particular bill is it became a $50 billion bill that was filled with unrelated pork. Two-thirds of that bill had nothing to do with Sandy.”
-- Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.), interview with NBC’s Katy Tur, Aug. 28, 2017

- snip -
Many Republicans said that the emergency spending should have been offset by cuts elsewhere. House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.), at the time chairman of the Budget Committee, was one arguing the money needed to be offset. “This legislative abuse is an insult to families facing real emergencies in the wake of the storm,” he declared.
Many Republicans in the House voted for an alternative bill, crafted by Rep. Mick Mulvaney (R-S.C.), now President Trump’s budget director, that would have funded a smaller emergency bill with a 1.63 percent across-the-board reduction in spending on discretionary programs. “It’s so important to me that I think we should pay for it,” he said. But his gambit was reject…

Today's Tweet

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Confirming my bias a little bit - but then again, I don't think it's a bad thing to confirm a bias against efforts to fog things over and shovel shit to cover up the parts of our history that make us uncomfortable.

Are you wondering why those Confederate statues crumple like cheap plastic? pic.twitter.com/5YDEyoP192 — EL4C (@EL4JC) August 20, 2017

Today's Pix

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Today's GIF

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Dogs are smart, but as with everything else, there are exceptions.


Kinda like politicians - and bloggers.

Today's Tweet

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Guess who said it.

"You met with them in secret. You planned to promote our enemies' interests. That is the definition of conspiracy."

Robert Mueller or GoT? — Jay Kuo (@nycjayjay) August 28, 2017

More Monuments Mess

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LA Times Op-Ed, Lisa Richardson:

Blacks and whites will have different perspectives on their entwined history. War victory for my white great-great-great grandfather, Jeremiah H. Dial, who enlisted in the 31st Arkansas infantry regiment and was wounded in the battle of Stone River, Tenn., in December 1862, would have meant defeat for my great-great-great-grandmother Lavinia Fulton and their daughter, Mary Ellen. Instead, Lavinia died a free woman, living to play with her grandchildren and give thanks to God every Sunday in church in Birmingham, Ala. I thank God my great-great-great-grandfather lost. Every right-thinking person should be glad he lost.

Yet the monuments debate isn’t really about the past. It’s about a present-day assertion of white supremacy and whether our nation is going to stop making excuses and stare it down. Most of the statues, as has been widely discussed, were erected long after Robert E. Lee surrendered at Appomattox. They were hoisted into view to assert white …

More True History

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Trying to square some people up with the truth seems futile.  But there's value in writing this shit down as I go - and the value may be mostly in pointing this out to myself from time to time, if nobody else.

The Atlantic, Adam Serwer - 2 months ago:

The strangest part about the continued personality cult of Robert E. Lee is how few of the qualities his admirers profess to see in him he actually possessed.
- and -
Lee had beaten or ordered his own slaves to be beaten for the crime of wanting to be free, he fought for the preservation of slavery, his army kidnapped free blacks at gunpoint and made them unfree—but all of this, he insisted, had occurred only because of the great Christian love the South held for blacks. Here we truly understand Frederick Douglass’s admonition that "between the Christianity of this land and the Christianity of Christ, I recognize the widest possible difference."

Privately, according to the correspondence collected by his own family, Lee counsele…

Today's GIF

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Heartbreak is the foundation of art.

Today's Tweet

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If they wanted to pay off the national debt, they could raffle off who gets to watch the impeachment with @RepMaxineWaters. pic.twitter.com/TGcRUKzxos — Eric Garland (@ericgarland) August 24, 2017

3 Things

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...about Joe Arpaio

First, (yes, I'll say it again): 
When I hear "Joe", I think "Sheriff". 
And when I hear Arpaio, I think "Nottingham".

Second, always remember that a pardon is an absolute affirmation of guilt.

Third, this, from the archives at Phoenix New Times:

Taxpayers spent $1,102,528.50 this year to settle another of Sheriff Joe Arpaio's lawsuits, New Times has learned through a public records request. The suit was brought by a man whom Arpaio framed in 1999 in a staged murder plot against the sheriff.

The payout, nine years after the wrongful arrest, is an indicaton that the aging lawman's publicity-driven, unsavory antics may keep costing taxpayers big money well into the future. The county is already struggling with a huge budget deficit, and the excessive costs of Arpaio's operation isn't helping matters.

In 2004, victim James Saville’s family sued Arpaio for $10 million, after Saville was found not guilty of attempting to kill th…

Pick One

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Of course, both of these can't be true at the same time, but that's how 45* rolls - and it would seem that's how the rubes want it.

If Senate Republicans don't get rid of the Filibuster Rule and go to a 51% majority, few bills will be passed. 8 Dems control the Senate! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 25, 2017

11 minutes later:

Few, if any, Administrations have done more in just 7 months than the Trump A. Bills passed, regulations killed, border, military, ISIS, SC! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 25, 2017

11 minutes.

"Those mean ol' Dems won't let me get anything done, and meanwhile I'm doing more than anybody else ever did before".

Etch-A-Sketching in real time.

Gaslighting on an industrial scale.

Another quick reminder from St Ayn of Rand:

Contradiction can exist, but it cannot prevail.

White Like Me

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This guy reversed the old experiment (Black Like Me), by creating an online persona so he could step into the shoes of an Alt-Right knuckle-dragger.

WaPo interview with Theo Wilson:

After engaging in endless sparring matches in the comments section, Wilson began to notice something curious: His trolls seemed to speak a language unto themselves, one replete with the same twisted facts and false history. It was as if they had all passed through some “dimensional doorway,” arriving from an alternative universe where history, politics and commonly accepted facts had been turned inside out.

There was the idea that slavery was a form of charity that benefited enslaved Africans; that freed blacks owned more slaves than whites before the Civil War; that people of color make up the majority of those receiving aid from America's safety-net programs; and that investor and philanthropist George Soros is funding protest movements like Black Lives Matter.

You mention that in their forums they'r…

Today's Tweet

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Special Racist Asshole Edition:

Russell Walker files lawsuit demanding Confederate flags be returned to courtroom, invokes "Martin Luther Coon." pic.twitter.com/5yIDjvZcV7 — Jeffrey Guterman (@JeffreyGuterman) August 24, 2017

The Past Ain't Even The Past Yet

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This makes me think she had some real points to make - a lot like the points black folks are still trying to make - but all I really remember about Angela Davis was the feeling that I was supposed to be wary of her - and that whole merry band of "black radicals" out there in California.

Trying to sort through it is complicated, and I have to continue looking back to learn a bit more from that weirdest of weird times we call the 60s, when I was very much just a knuckleheaded teenager, trying to make sense of what I thought I was learning about the world - especially the parts concerning Race Relations and Power and the Politics of Change here in USAmerica Inc - as the world's problems were getting bigger even as the world itself was getting smaller in what seemed like one big fuckin' hurry.

Way too much of "the news" - one of the things I was trying to learn from - way back in the golden age of "honest broadcast journalism" - turned out to be about a…

Keith

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The list goes on.  And oh yeah - we can call 'em The RepubliKlan Party now. Thanks, Keith.


The View From Out There

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An irrelevant freak show

A Little Diversion

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Cuz ya can't do the "look what that fuckin' idiot did today" all day every day.

News To Me

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The best thing I've come across in a long time.

From HuffPo (hey - even a blind hog roots up an acorn once in a while):

A native Virginian, a railroad magnate, a slaveholder, and an ardent secessionist, Mahone served in the Confederate army throughout the war. He was one of the Army of Northern Virginia’s most able commanders, distinguishing himself particularly in the summer of 1864 at the Battle of the Crater outside Petersburg. After the war, Robert E. Lee recalled that, when contemplating a successor, he thought that Mahone “had developed the highest qualities for organization and command.”

How did such a high-ranking Confederate commander wind up missing in action in a Charleston gift shop? Not, I think, by accident.

By now, Americans interested in the Confederate monument removal project have had it drilled into them that the monuments were erected decades after the end of the Civil War as testimonies to white supremacy in all its various manifestations: segregation, disenfranch…

Today's Quote

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If you have any young friends who aspire to become writers, the second greatest favor you can do them is to present them with copies of The Elements Of Style.  The first greatest, of course, is to shoot them now - while they're happy.
--Dorothy Parker

Bamboozle Me, Baby

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Ben Carson went to Phoenix - and the obvious reason was to be exploited as "my African-American".

WaPo, Philip Bump:

And, as simply as that, a law was likely broken.

There are a lot of ways in which the federal government could be used to reward political friends and allies, of course, appointments being just one example. But the power of the government can also be leveraged to political advantage. Imagine a candidate who appeared at a campaign rally to be endorsed by the heads of each branch of the armed forces, for example. That would carry a lot of weight.

In 1939, Franklin Roosevelt signed the Hatch Act into law, a measure meant to preserve the impartiality of public servants. “The law’s purposes,” the Office of Special Counsel’s website explains, “are to ensure that federal programs are administered in a nonpartisan fashion, to protect federal employees from political coercion in the workplace, and to ensure that federal employees are advanced based on merit and not based o…

Today's Tweet

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The big bamboozle

To recap: Trump is threatening a government shutdown unless his fellow Republicans fund border wall he promised voters Mexico would pay for. — Matt McDermott (@mattmfm) August 23, 2017

Keith

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The number of contacts between the Trump campaign and the Russians has been underestimated - there were dozens.

Whoa

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Tim Johnson, McClatchy DC

The Pentagon won’t yet say how the USS John S. McCain was rammed by an oil tanker near Singapore, but red flags are flying as the Navy’s decades-old reliance on electronic guidance systems increasing looks like another target of cyberattack.

The incident – the fourth involving a Seventh Fleet warship this year – occurred near the Strait of Malacca, a crowded 1.7-mile-wide waterway that connects the Indian Ocean and the South China Sea and accounts for roughly 25 percent of global shipping.

“When you are going through the Strait of Malacca, you can’t tell me that a Navy destroyer doesn’t have a full navigation team going with full lookouts on every wing and extra people on radar,” said Jeff Stutzman, chief intelligence officer at Wapack Labs, a New Boston, New Hampshire, cyber intelligence service.

“There’s something more than just human error going on because there would have been a lot of humans to be checks and balances,” said Stutzman, a former information war…

Today's Pix

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