Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Lazy Wednesday


I knew eventually someone would remake Bonnie and Clyde.  Casting Amy Poehler and Wayne Knight is certainly non-traditional.

This is a man dressed as a coronavirus demon in Chennai, India.  If that's what it takes to get people vaccinated, send him a plane ticket to Kansas City.

Last chance to see the bust of Roger Taney in the Capitol!  After yesterday's House vote it will move to Clarence Thomas's office at the Supreme Court.  Well, why not?

Believed extinct for 150 years, Gould's mouse has been discovered in Australia.  This could mean that one day a moderate Republican will turn up again in the United States.

The Tour de France is more interesting to Americans when this happens.  We're car people.  We hate bicycles.

And do read Garry Wills on abortion in Sunday's New York Times.

Tuesday, June 29, 2021


 I am informed that Chris Christie is the latest member of the previous administration to publish a book.  Of course Christie was a member of the previous administration solely in his own mind, because Trump repaid his early endorsement by treating him like something the cat kills and leaves in the middle of the bed for you.  He was put in charge of the transition and then his work was consigned to the dumpster along with the Obama pandemic preparedness plan.  He hung around like the nineteenth kid, the one who wasn't even picked last for the baseball game, periodically tweeting praise of Trump in the hope of a chance to pinch-hit.  And he's as oblivious as ever; the object is called Republican Rescue:  Saving the Party From Truth Deniers, Conspiracy Theorists, and the Dangerous Policies of Joe Biden, a title which represents a day's reading for the average Trumpanzee.  He "feels compelled to weigh in" on the lies and grievances that cost his beloved party the House, Senate and White House all at once, for the first time since 1932.  He's not at all happy about the failed coup, probably because it failed.  He thinks he's the man who -- look, he'll be hitting the chat shows any time now, let him tell it.

I have only one question.  How do you undergo bariatric surgery without losing a pound?  Not body shaming, asking for a friend.  

Rebuffed by the Republicans, Nancy Pelosi has introduced legislation to permit the establishment of a Failed Coup Commission they can whine about.  She will choose eight of its thirteen members and is thinking of wasting one of her chips on a Republican.  Surely Joe Biden could have done this in January without asking anybody's permission, as Lyndon Johnson did with the Warren Commission.  

An informal straw poll of New York Republicans resulted in zero votes for up-and-coming Andrew Giuliani.  Rep. Lee Zeldin got 85%, Rob Astorino 5%, and ten percent chose Abstain over Son of Rudolph.  It looks like the Giuliani dynasty won't be moving into the governor's mansion next year.

The "elitist snobs" at Vogue are putting a doctor on their next cover and it's Dr. Jill Biden.   Another slap in the Botox to Melania Trump, Woman of the People.

Guatemala says Russia has failed to deliver a batch of Sputnik V covid vaccine and they would like a refund.  Production problems in the Motherland?

Remember Sonny Perdue, worthless governor turned worthless Secretary of Agriculture?  Well, I swan.  It looks like ag behemoth Archer-Daniels-Midland sold him a piece of land in South Carolina at a fire-sale price just before he took over the DoA.  I'm sure he would have been their friend anyway but it never hurts to make sure.  You know, keep your friends close and your regulators supine.

Help is on the...way?  Republican governors are responding to Greg Abbott's bat signal by ordering National Guard members to the southern border for a little media theater.  First to ride over the ridge are Kristi Noem's cavalry.  I hope they brought tanks -- those barefoot kids look scary.  I also hope nothing bad happens back home, like some dumb ditz setting off fireworks at Mount Rushmore on July 4 and starting a wildfire.  Yup, sure hope.

Have to get a bigger couch.  Or just make space on the doofus divan for Harris Faulkner, who's ready for her close-up.  Today Faulkner declared the 150 or so dead in the Champlain Tower collapse "part of God's plan" and blamed those imaginary Democrats intent on defunding the police.  But then isn't defunding the police also part of the plan?  Never mind, Harris, I am intrigued by your ideas and would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

Is she crazier than Tucker Carlson, who claims the NSA is spying on him?  I don't even know what crazy sounds like anymore.  Maybe it sounds like demon dentist Paul Gosar, who's holding a fundraiser with Holocaust-denying white supremacist Nick Fuentes.  And yet the Gosar family begs people not to vote for him.  Puzzling.

Margie Greene is on "Drive-time with Steve Bannon" so often she's practically his Robin Quivers.  Today she gave out the personal phone number of the National Children's Museum director because it includes anti-racism material on its website.  Bannon then urged "patriots" to crash said website.  When they did, he was so excited he needed a shower, as usual.  Maybe Pelosi should put the cow on some dead-end committees so she has less time to harass museums, make speeches, stalk other members of Congress and overdose on synthetic estrogen.  Too much is as bad as too little, honey.  Just wait out the hot flashes, OK?



Go to hell -- wait, it's here

An interesting map I came across:


The idea of hell as really hot got a big boost from John Milton, with the fallen angels and the burning lake.  Dante's hell is dark and rains a lot, like a November afternoon in Glasgow, definitely something you could survive.  When you get to the worst bit, Judas Iscariot is sharing a block of ice with Brutus and Cassius (medieval Europe thought highly of Julius Caesar).  Folks in the Pacific Northwest would probably welcome some of that today.  

Greta Thunberg, who spends more time thinking about this than most of us, tweets, "Heat records are usually broken by decimals, like a tenth of a degree.  And not in June...This heat-wave is just getting started..."  It doesn't sound like she's looking forward to a bright and wonderful future.  (It's 76F in Stockholm today.)

Earlier this month Louie Gohmert inspired a lot of jokes when he asked if changing the orbit of the earth or moon could effect climate change.  Utterances from Gohmert tend to be dumb, so many people failed to see that, as Philip Bump pointed out, he was being ironic:  It's not in the government's power to do any such thing, so why even pretend we can address planetary warming?  At the time I assumed he was working from the 1961 Val Guest film The Day the Earth Caught Fire.   Simultaneous nuclear tests at the North and South Poles by the US and USSR (each unaware of the other) change the earth's orbit and send it hurtling toward the sun.  On reflection, he can't have seen it or he'd be lobbying for such testing.  After all, there's a 50-50 chance we could rocket off toward Mars instead.

I think I can personally line up bipartisan support for a federal law prohibiting TV reporters from frying any more eggs on pavement.   Enough is enough.  

Monday, June 28, 2021

All over the map

 Do you want the good news or the bad news?

Marine LePen's Rassemblement National lost a regional election it was poised to win in its southern stronghold of Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur.

After a debate which Emmanuel Macron described as being about "civilization and culture" Hungarian prime minister Viktor Orban was handed an ultimatum:  Protect LGBTQ rights or leave the European Union.  Hungary recently enacted a law to "protect" children from gay people that mirrors Russia's.  "Hate, intolerance and discrimination have no place in our Union," said Luxembourg prime minister Xavier Bettel.

A senior official of the UK Ministry of Defense left a bunch of "top secret" documents at a bus shelter in Kent, and if you believe that, you'll believe the rest.  A member of the public turned them in, not to the ministry but to the BBC.  Now Tory MPs who want to destroy the BBC accuse it of paying the person and then reporting on the incident.   

In other Boris buffoonery, the Health Minister Matt Hancock resigned after he was caught kissing his aide/mistress Gina Coladangelo, which is not allowed under covid social distancing rules.  His successor Sajid Javid has removed the spy camera from his office. It sounds like a good idea.

Here comes a whiz-bang!  Comet Bernardinelli-Bernstein is a thousand times larger than the average comet and will reach our solar system in 2031.  That's right, they can see it from ten years away.  Plenty of time to design the shirts and commemorative cocktails.

Mel Brooks is 95 today, definitely good news!

Just when you were planning to take Michael Bender's book to the beach along comes Michael Wolff with Landslide, the closing volume (we fervently hope) of the Trump trilogy.  Wolff covers the Sit Room yelling about unleashing the Insurrection Act on BLM protesters while Mark Espy and Bill Barr both shoot it down.  He also takes us inside the abortive coup, as Mark Meadows protests that Trump can't really lead the mob to the Capitol and gets the response, "I didn't mean it literally."  Of course he didn't.  Back at the White House Trump can't believe those "trailer camp" people in their low-rent "getups" represent him, and jokes about investing in tattoo parlors.  At his elbow, Princess dismissed it as an "optics issue," while Giuliani was "drinking heavily and in a constant state of excitation, often almost incoherent"-- America's mayor?  I guess I can manage two beach books.

In other words, Trump has such contempt for his disciples that he slanders them as "Democrats."  Well, guess what?  The QAnon core of Trumpworld is fed up with him, too, if reactions to the big Wellington jam are to be believed.  "I support Trump but this is getting ridiculous," one wrote.  Failing to read the room, he never mentioned the insurrectionists who are "rotting in jail," and he boasted about vaccine even though the Qs know the pandemic is a "hoax."  "Nothing but carnage everywhere you look," said the Leader, quoting his own inaugural rant.  Where are the new songs?  When does the balloon go up?  When can we hang Mike Pence?  Some are convinced he's dead, replaced by a clone.  Bo-ring!

Well, Cy Vance and Tish James have given Trump's remaining un-disbarred lawyers until Monday to dissuade them from filing criminal charges against The Organization, so threats of violence have not deterred them.  Popcorn time.



Sunday, June 27, 2021

It's so peaceful in the country

 ...if the country is New Zealand.  For the rest of us, not so much.

What the hell is going on at LAX?  On Thursday a driver crashed a fence and drove across several runways with police in pursuit.  Friday evening a man decided he really didn't want to go to Salt Lake City, so he activated the emergency exit and jumped down the slide of a United Express plane as it prepared to take off.  I seem to remember that after 9/11 air marshals were assigned to random domestic flights.  It might be time to resume this practice.

"What's so funny 'bout peace, love and understanding?" Elvis Costello demanded in 1979.  I don't think he got, or expected, an answer.  Mark Milley's career has not dealt with peace or love but he's all in favor of understanding.  "What is wrong with understanding?  Having some situational understanding about the country which we are here to defend?" the general asked of Matt Gaetz, whose career has been dedicated to situational ignorance.  This enraged his good buddy Tucker Carlson who called Milley "not only a pig but stupid," which is how the post-Buckley right deploys language in the cut-and-thrust of debate.  Carlson in turn enraged Veterans for Responsible Leadership and other groups, who want United Services Automobile Association (USAA) to stop sponsoring Tuckums's White Power Hour.  To be continued, since Tuckums has no idea when to shut up.

It's just conceivable, of course, that he will apologize, or as they now say, "walk it back."  Normally this is dismissed as a sign of weakness, but then Marjorie T. Greene went to the Holocaust Memorial Museum and decided that making people wear masks during a pandemic is not especially similar to making people wear "gold stars" during a genocide.  "I have made a mistake.  And it's really bothered me for a couple of weeks now," she said afterwards, in a speech where her excuse was that "I'm a new member of Congress...about five and a half months now, it seems a lot longer than that."  (For us, too.)  And she's a really normal person, and her daddy died in April, etc.  I'm grateful to the HMM, because Margie's not much of a reader.  Now that they've straightened her out about Nazis she needs a museum to explain communism.  Last night she was calling Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez "the little communist from New York City" who is "not an American" and echoing the mob, "Yeah, lock her up too, that's a good idea."

Margie was one of the opening acts at Save America!, the traveling Trump carnival that brought thousands of Trumpanzees to -- let me check -- Wellington, Ohio.  (Trump owes so much money to so many cities for past hate rallies that major cities won't rent him venues or provide security anymore.)  Gov. Mike DeWine, Sen. Rob Portman and Rep. Anthony Gonzalez, all Republicans, all had previous engagements, especially since The Big Liar was there to denounce Gonzalez for voting to impeach him the second time.  (Maybe he's also "not an American."  Last year he got 15,000 more votes in his district than Trump.)  Trump does not apologize; like Olive Oyl's father in the comics, he thinks the whole world owes him an apology for failing to recognize that he single-handedly created three different vaccines which saved all but 600,000 Americans.  Instead his electoral triumph was stolen and he has to rent a plane that doesn't even have its own surgical suite.  Patriot Takes sent a spy to Wellington and he posted video of bored attendees walking out during the rant.  Sad.  Serves him right for using Dolly Parton's music without (I'm sure) her permission.

Trump is even dumber and more aggressively ignorant than Greene, so he gets all his "information" from other eedjits like Pillow Mike.  What else could explain his whining about the Supreme Court, a third of whose members are his and Moscow Mitch's creatures?  Lindell tells him it's up to the Court to "overturn" the election and when they don't he's "ashamed" of their gutlessness.  Echoing Carlson, he raged at Mark Milley and other "woke" generals.  Unaware that states control public school curricula he wants a Republican Congress to ban critical race theory, which in his Adderall-addled mind looks like George Floyd and sounds like pre-hajj Malcolm X.  He's changed that mind about migrants, who used to be "murderers and rapists."  Now they're "wonder kids" reduced to feral suicides by Biden's "stupid policy" of taking them from their parents.  No wonder even the MAGAts walked out, probably quoting George W. Bush:  "That was some crazy shit."

In spite of useful idiots like Greene and Boebert, the Republican Party can't help denigrating and condescending to women, whose votes are slipping away.  The attacks on General Milley claim that understanding racism will "feminize" Our Troops and make them incapable of waging war, although a good many of those troops are actual women.  Today on Meet the Press Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA) went a step farther, proclaiming infrastructure "a woman's problem" because women use the roads for shopping and taking children to school.  Opening his mouth wider and inserting the other foot, Cassidy went on, "The more time she spends on that road, the less time she spends doing things of higher value," like cooking and cleaning, I guess.  This fool, who is actually a physician, thinks infrastructure is nothing but highways and the occasional bridge, although the Biden administration is clear about including airports, high speed rail, dams, internet and power.  You should read the bill, doc.  And once again I call on the medical schools to stiffen their entrance requirements.

There are Pride Parades all over this week, New York's being the biggest, and the LGBTQ community is getting mixed signals from the Vatican.  Not long after affirming its doctrine that same-sex acts are "disordered" and gender identity immutable, Pope Francis sent a nice handwritten letter to Father James Martin thanking him for his ministry to gay Catholics.   This makes the pope, I'm sorry to say, no better than Rep. Kevin McCarthy.  For weeks DC Police officer Michael Fanone has walked the halls of the Capitol he nearly died defending on January 6, asking the Gutless Twenty-one why they voted against awarding the Congressional Gold Medal to him and his colleagues.  Andrew "Cowardly" Clyde wouldn't even shake his hand.  He finally got an audience with McCarthy, who promised to speak privately to his caucus of cop-haters but refused to criticize them publicly.  McCarthy won't even deny the "False Flag/FBI" conspiracy theory first aired by Sean Hannity.  He's the perfect Republican moral leader.  I think the Catholic Church can do better, but who am I to judge?

Cheer up, it's nutty everywhere.  In Runcorn, Cheshire, a lone woman took her stand against the covid testing she knew to be happening in a white tent beside the Queen of Hearts pub.  She denounced the "scamdemic" and said she could hear children "crying and screaming" from across the parking lot as swabs were thrust into their little noses.  In fact, the tent was a marquee for pub patrons who wished to watch the Euro 2020 football and there wasn't a swab in the place.  Luckily for the football fans, the woman did not drive an SUV into the place while yelling "Stop the steal!"  An American would have been more proactive.




Friday, June 25, 2021

Enter the dragon

 While we were distracted by other concerns, the history of the species was being re-written in China, and the twentieth century prologue is more exciting than any Indiana Jones kerfuffle.  Back in 1933 workmen in Harbin, in Heilongjiang province, discovered a huge fossilized skull.  They hid it in a derelict well to keep it out of the hands of Japanese occupiers, and there it remained until one of the men revealed the secret to his grandson in 2018.  Anthropologists have named it Homo longi or "dragon man," probably related to other hominims who were around China and Siberia 146,000 years ago.  Human evolution "was not a simple evolutionary tree but a dense intertwined bush," says Mark Maslin of University College, London.  Dragon Man had a larger skull, and therefore probably a larger brain, than many a 2021 human.  A few examples:

The state Board of Education has banned Florida students from learning about critical race theory and specifically from reading The 1619 Project but Republicans decided that wasn't enough.  As of July 1 state college and university students must be "surveyed" to make sure they have not been brainwashed with "orthodoxies" that the legislature doesn't like, or as Ron DeSantis calls it, "stale ideology."  Like the gruesome fairy tale about the crucified carpenter?  No, probably not.  No one seems to know what use will be made of the surveys -- maybe they'll be handed to the Cyber Ninjas for tabulation.  

This is the eighth anniversary of the Supreme Court's 5-4 ruling in Shelby v. Holder that decided we no longer needed the pre-clearance clause of the 1965 Voting Rights Act because racism was clearly over.  There was a Black president and everything.  What more do you want?  "Decades-old data and eradicated practices" is how John Roberts described the basis for that section, setting in motion the hundreds of voter-suppression laws now being passed by our white-collar lynchers.  Matthew Steilen,, a law professor at the University of Buffalo, has suggested that other racist SCOTUS decision like Scot v. Sandford and Plessy v. Ferguson be glided over so as to spare students text that is "gratuitously insulting and demeaning."  These are law students -- they'd better toughen up lest they burst into tears the first time a judge overrules them.  And what better time to learn that the Supreme Court has usually been on the wrong side of history?  Don't omit Korematsu v. US, and Buck v. Bell ("Three generations of imbeciles is enough"), and of course Shelby v. Holder.  

While the Democrats struggle to pass the John Lewis act, the Justice Department is suing Georgia over the vote suppression law it passed in March alleging that it was meant "to deny or abridge the right to vote on the basis of race or color."  Roberts didn't get around to shredding that bit.  Maybe next October.

Another day, another bombshell book:  Michael Bender's Frankly, We Did Win This Election:  The Inside Story of How Trump Lost documents what we long knew, that Trump is a thug who wanks to violence.  On January 6 he was too entranced by the mayhem on his TV screen to respond to pleas for help from Kevin McCarthy and others, and as demonstrations over the murder of George Floyd grew more heated, he told law enforcement officials to "Crack their skulls!"  He urged the military to "beat the fuck out of" protesters in Seattle and Portland.  "Just shoot them!"  Even Bill Barr ignored him.  Stephen Miller made the mistake of comparing the protests to overseas war zones in the hearing of General Mark Milley, who responded, "Shut the fuck up, Stephen."  According to Bender, Milley pointed to a portrait of Lincoln and said, "That guy had an insurrection.  What we have, Mr. President, is a protest."  The general has now atoned for allowing himself to be dragooned into the St. John's church upside-down-Bible disgrace.

Andrew Giuliani brought a smile to many faces with his video Tweet in defense of daddy, but it was blown away by Trump hailing the Borat co-star as "the Eliot Ness of his generation."  Unless he's thinking of the imaginary creature in the Scottish lake, Trump probably remembers Ness as the man who nailed Al Capone for tax evasion after failing to nail him for murder and racketeering.  If he listens carefully, he can probably hear his former money man Alan Weisselberg making a deal with the Southern District of New York.  Tick...tick...

Election fraud found!  Meet McCrae Dowless of Bladen County, North Carolina, who pleaded guilty to an absentee ballot scam he's been running since 2016 along with collecting phony disability checks.  The North Carolina GQP says they never heard of him. 

Another charge for Biden:  According to  Tom Cotton he's responsible for all the airline violence, too.  No, says the president of the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA International, Sara Nelson, "Masks were politicized and violence was stoked."  Who are you going to believe, someone who deals with assaults on her members or a doofus with -- and I hardly want to write this -- presidential aspirations?  I await the assertion that Biden caused the collapse of Champlain Towers South.  Surfside, Florida, is on a barrier island.  The sea level is rising inexorably.  He should have spotted the coming disaster forty years ago.  Impeach!


Thursday, June 24, 2021

Good day sunshine

 I already had in mind a cheerful, upbeat post before I saw the collapsed building in Florida.  Well, it's always a bad day for someone.  I need this.

How are things in Dannemora?  Connecticut will allow prisoners to make free phone calls, greatly reducing the financial burden on their families.  They now pay five dollars for a fifteen-minute call.  That leaves forty-nine states where greedy carriers can still rip people off.  The state has also legalized recreational cannabis.  See, Texas, you don't have to live in misery.

Goodbye Rudy Thursday:  A New York Supreme Court appellate panel has suspended the law license of Rudolph Giuliani because of "demonstrably false and misleading statements" made in service to the Big  Loser and his Big Lie.  A first, I believe, for a former US Attorney and New York City mayor and no doubt a boost to his son's political hopes. 

David Keene is a two-time president of the NRA so he didn't bother to check before agreeing to speak at the commencement of James Madison Academy.  Surprise!  It doesn't exist.  He exhorted 3,044 empty chairs to uphold the Second Amendment.  Change the Ref was founded by Patricia and Manuel Oliver, whose son Joaquin was murdered at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in 2018.  The chairs represented seniors who won't graduate this year because they were also killed with guns.

California is dry as dust but swimming in money.  The state plans to use $5.2 billion in federal stimulus cash to pay off the back rent of low-income residents which accrued during the pandemic.  Could student loans be next?  

Nearly sixty years since Joe McCarthy got his comeuppance at the hands of Joseph Welch, Republican demagogues still haven't learned not to mess with the Army.  At a session of the House Armed Services Committee, popular Florida comedy duo Gaetz & Waltz decided to jump on General Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, about how the military is weakened by "woke" culture and the single course at West Point that touches on critical race theory.  Let's say it could have gone better.   It wasn't the general who "embarrassed himself," no matter what Fox News says.  Although I have to agree with angry Laura Ingraham -- we need to defund the police military.

The Supreme Court has ruled 8-1 that Brandi Levy's Snapchat rant about cheerleading is protected by the First Amendment, because of course it is.  Guess who dissented.  (Hint:  Ginny told him to.)

The Michigan Republican Party has examined efforts to re-re-re-audit the 2020 election in the state and has concluded that they are a giant nothingburger, with Jovan Pulitzer and Mike Lindell singled out for personal shaming.  The Big Liar won't accept it but it's a nice read.

Spider-Man met the pope.  I didn't know he was Catholic.


Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Sky falling. That is all.

"I wish I was joking.  It's real.  It's actually real.  I don't know how much time we can spend on it without collapsing into fits of giggles coupled with a really weird sense of desolation."

That was the reaction of James O'Brien on the London radio station LBC to "One Britain, One Nation," the patriotic anthem released to mark the fifth anniversary of the Brexit referendum.  He's right in every respect.  It was written by Kash Singh, obviously one of the "good" immigrants, and the recording by young children is right up there with "Oceania 'tis for thee."  Well, that's their problem.  Mine is that Mr. O'Brien's response to the song is my response to almost everything, especially the weird sense of desolation.

Food is a weapon.  I think that was a slogan during at least one war.  And now it has shown up in the culture wars arsenal.  An IKEA store in Atlanta decided to celebrate Juneteenth with a special menu to represent "culture and tradition" that included watermelon, fried chicken, collard greens and mashed potatoes.  According to one worker, no Black employees were consulted.  Back to little meatballs, please.  Maybe they meant well, which cannot be said of the basketball coaching staff of Coronado High School in California.  The mostly-white team defeated mostly-Latino Orange Glen High School in a division championship game 60-57.  Not satisfied with the win, the Coronado coach shouted expletives at the opponents while his players hurled tortillas at them.  Coach Laaperi has been fired.

Is Greg Abbott determined to turn Texas into a place as bleak and hopeless as his life in a wheelchair?  I ask with considerable hesitation -- after all, many people who lose the ability to walk have responded with overwhelming resolve and compassion for others, from Franklin Roosevelt to Tammy Duckworth.  But everything this guy does is shot through with hate and rage.  Not content with vowing to waste state money on WALL, making voting a task that would discourage Hercules and all but requiring public schools to inculcate white supremacy, now Abbott is blocking laws passed by the all-Republican legislature, the Democrats having walked out in protest.  These include a bill requiring children to be taught about domestic violence; a bill for early parole of inmates convicted of certain crimes before age 18; a ban on using hypnosis to obtain evidence admissable in court; and a bill to expand broadband access, especially in rural areas.  For many people the last straw was his veto of a law against chaining up dogs outdoors without access to water.  Even Hitler would have supported that.

The Navy uses a training document for its internal police called Terrorism/Terrorist Operations which lists socialists alongside neo-Nazis and anarchists as Scary People.  They must be worried today, because India Walton, a socialist, has defeated Mayor Byron Brown in the Democratic primary and will probably be the next mayor of Buffalo, New York. 

"This was not a peaceful was intended to halt the very functioning of our government," said Judge Royce C. Lamberth as he sentenced Anna Morgan-Lloyd to three years probation for taking part in the January 6 coup.  The Indiana woman is the first to be sentenced; she must also pay a fine and perform community service.  The prosecutor agreed that two days of jail was enough for the 49-year-old grandmother.  Judge Lamberth is a Republican appointed by Ronald Reagan.

The leader of the coup has yet to experience any punishment aside from loss of his Twitter and Facebook accounts and the cancellation of his contract to operate the municipal golf course at Ferry Point in the Bronx.  In the latter action he is suing New York City for $30 million to assuage the hurt feelings he suffered at the hands of Mayor Bill DeBlasio.  That should keep him in Depends through next year.

Of course, nobody hurts Trumpelthinskin's feelings like the mean people on the television, but we're only now hearing about the revenge he tried to take.  Like classifying all those Alec Baldwin sketches on SNL as "illegal campaign contributions" to the Democrats and unleashing the FEC.  Like invoking the "equal time" provision that hasn't even existed since 1987 (and never applied to satire) and making the FCC make NBC give him some.  Like actually getting the Justice Department to bully the late-night hosts the way Michael Cohen used to bully people for him.  I'm surprised he didn't demand that the State Department deport James Corden.  Or did he?

You want to know who gets attacked every day?  Joseph R. Biden is who.  According to Gym Jordan it's his fault gas costs more than it did a year ago, when millions fewer were driving.  According to Lara's consort it's his fault Russia is "literally hacking our country...the lack of respect" Putin feels for presidents who don't give him BJs.  It's his fault the Senate won't even debate For the People, not Sinema and Manchin acting like Moses brought the filibuster down the mountain.  It's his fault the country has not met his goal for covid vaccination, not the numpties who refuse to get the shot (like the "healthcare workers" at Houston Methodist or the idiots at Indiana University).  Maybe you'd like him to lock them up like Duterte in the Philippines.  And the people who ignore his advice and come to the southern border anyway?  His fault.  

Biden will just have to suck it up until fall.  That's the new, rather vague date when, as Pillow Mike told the Restore America jamboree last weekend, Trump will definitely return to power.  The Supreme Court has to order the election overturned and they don't come back from recess until October 5, then there's a three-day weekend for Indigenous Peoples Day so...maybe the thirteenth?  Mike complains of "living in the twilight zone" because none of the judges he pesters will look at his Miss Flite stack of very serious documents.  (Bleak House.  Re-read it.)  "Then they're going to go 9-0 that this country was attacked."  

Hang in there, Joe.  Help is on the way.    

Monday, June 21, 2021

The island of Dr. Moron

I always look forward to Trump's Holiday Greetings, a literary genre which always manages to be about him.  Yesterday:  "Happy Father's Day to all, including the Radical Left, RINOs, and other Losers of the world.  Hopefully, eventually, everyone will come together!"  (No, I don't where it was posted, possibly the "rate this product" page on Amazon.)  The Chief Loser wants all to have a good day although, according to Stormy Daniels, coming together is not one of his priorities.  Do you think Princess, Fredo and Other Fredo clubbed together on a card?  They wished him a happy birthday on Twitter, which is wonderfully cruel.  That's because Mr. DeJoyBoy charges half a buck for a stamp, soon rising to 53 cents to pay for machines to replace the ones he smashed to discourage voting.  I can't wait for January:  "Happy New Year even to Antifa and Marxist Democrats who will soon witness my return to power!!"

Another week, another appalling revelation.  According to Nightmare Scenario:  Inside the Trump Administration's Response To the Pandemic That Changed History by Yasmeen Abutaleb and Damian Paletta, during a meeting in February 2020 Trump said, "We import goods.  We are not going to import a virus."  Advised that cases of covid-19 were already being reported he responded, "Don't we have an island that we own?  What about Guantanamo?"  That's adorable -- he thinks Guantanamo is an island and not a part of Cuba.  Less adorable of course is wanting to turn it into a sort of leper colony for sick Americans.  But there's also a hilarious exchange between Trump and his HHS Secretary Alex Azar:  "Testing is killing me!  I'm going to lose the election because of testing!  What idiot had the federal government do testing?"  "Uh, do you mean Jared?"  The excerpt in the Washington Post is filled with dialogue like this, suitable for the inevitable movie.  ("Black comedy mixed with farce" -- Rotten Tomatoes)

Is Ron Johnson from Wisconsin the stupidest senator of this batch or of all time?  The question will be debated by historians, but for now let us just note that after single-handedly blocking the bill to make Juneteenth a national holiday last year, this cafone showed up at a Juneteenth celebration in Milwaukee.  His constituents were not warm in their welcome.  Wait till Cyber Ninjas show up to "audit" their votes -- and you know they will.  (The official recount in Milwaukee County actually added to Biden's total last year so, you know, last-minute Chinese ballots.  What else could it be?)

Trump lives on handouts from his followers, so he can't he pleased that his Commerce Secretary, Wilbur Ross, made at least $53 million during his four years of public service.  Ross has set himself up in the tax haven Cayman Islands so he can keep it all, too.  

Several states encourage drivers to kill or maim demonstrators who annoy them, but this does not yet extend to bicyclists.  A motorist in Show Low, Arizona, drove his truck into bikers early Saturday morning on Highway 60, injuring six, and was himself shot by police.  The bikers were taking part in a benefit race for Mountain Christian School.  Obviously Arizona Man was unaware that they were On a Mission From God.

False Flag is so last month.  The hot new Trump Wuz Robbed fantasy is known as ItalyGate, called by TPM "the crown jewel of conspiracy theories."  This version comes with extra snark, and pictures!    Everything you could want is here -- Obama financing the fraud, Somali pirates, a defunct Icelandic airline, the horse country of Virginia, a Bush operative deliriously named Hans von Spakovsky, and the mysterious Michele Ballarin (among other names) who I'm pretty sure once claimed to be the Grand Duchess Anastasia.  Meryl Streep, call your agent.  (Even more here.)

This is why I don't want anything in my house that calls itself "smart":  As the heat continues, Texans are being urged by ERCOT to raise the thermostats on their air conditioning, and when I say urged,  I mean people who don't comply are finding them automatically raised.  This is Texas, you understand, where  any attempt to regulate machine guns or make it less arduous to vote is denounced as Washington tyranny, but nobody seems to be threatening secession over this home invasion.  Not so tough now, eh?  Should have read the small print before you signed up for a smart thermostat.  Alexa, show me flights to Antarctica.



Friday, June 18, 2021

The eve of Juneteenth

So much butthurt over one holiday, which I'm told has been observed in Texas for years.  Remember when Bill Clinton was called "the first Black president"?  Biden might be the second.  Certainly he got a higher percentage of the Black vote thanks to Jim Clyburn and many others.  He's also the second Catholic president -- or is he?  The bishops have stopped shielding child abusers long enough to draft a plan to deny him communion because he supports reproductive choice.  First Catholic president who isn't a serial adulterer and these whited sepulchers want to cut him off.

Politics and religion is always a toxic soup for rational people, but it's starting to sicken the believers, too.  At Ralph Reed's Faith and Freedom shindig in Orlando, Mike Pence was booed for his failure to break the law and his oath of office last January.  A MAGAt named Hurley vented, "We need to stop being so damned nice!  Why is Pence coming today?  Donald Trump has his pen in his back still!"  Ah, yes, the Stab in the Back.  I was waiting for that one.

And now, a bit of fun:  According to the Wall Street Journal, Enrique Tarrio, former Proud Boys CEO, is selling Black Lives Matter shirts and "Impeach 45" gear to pay the rent.  I guess being an FBI snitch is not as profitable as it used to be.

Speaking of the feds, the hot new conspiracy theory burning up the right is a recycled version of "false flag" -- the FBI staged the coup attempt to discredit Trump and his followers.  As we know, World War II was the first false-flag, designed to make Hitler look bad.  It did get a bit out of hand toward the end.

It occurs to me that if the cunning Chinese are seeking superior DNA they shouldn't be targeting Americans, despite this being the greatest, bestest, most amazing country ever.  In winter sports the powers are Germany, Austria, Norway, Canada and (in speed skating) the Netherlands, Russia being usually banned for drug cheating.  We excel in figure skating.  Why would they want super-soldiers who can land a triple axel to the tune of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah"?  Tom Cotton has a head full of boll weevils.  

Politico obtained a recording of Florida Republican Congressional candidate William Braddock chatting about the regrettable need to send "a Russian and Ukrainian hit squad" to make his primary opponent Anna Paulina Luna "disappear."  You know, "for the good of the people of the United States of America," nothing personal.  Rep. Kinzinger, what was that about "how low we can get"?  Braddock says the recording was made without his permission and also it's not his voice, which is called covering all your bases.

According to a YouGov poll, Joe Biden has a favorability rating among Republicans of 14% against Vladimir Putin's 18%.  That should ruin Fathers Day for Joe. 

I smell trolling.  A woman in Canada has electrified the Q Continuum by claiming that Elizabeth II was executed (they love that stuff) and that she is the real Queen of Canada.  She is also "head of state and commander in chief of Canada, the republic," which makes no sense.  What if I tell you her name, Romana Didulo, is an anagram of "I am our Donald"?  Who's behind this, Andy Borowitz?

Tokyo will host the Olympics this summer with or without spectators.  Also without middle-distance runner Shelby Houlihan, who tested positive for a banned substance.  Houlihan blames the result on a burrito she bought from a truck in Beaverton, Oregon.  This is why I never ask for the pork with extra nandralone.  All the participants are getting mixed signals from Olympic organizers, who are distributing 160,000 free condoms while warning that "unnecessary forms of physical contact" are forbidden.  Define "unnecessary" to thousands of fit young people sharing a Village.  

This is Lake Oroville, in California.  Can we now agree that global warming is real?



Thursday, June 17, 2021

You're a grand old rag


"The Congress shall have the power to prohibit the physical desecration of the flag of the United States."  

Not a moment too soon, Steve Daines (R-MT) and some other senators you should never lend money to have introduced yet another amendment to protect our poor flag from the slobbering of degenerates and other forms of abuse.  There is nothing worse than lining up your militia for the dawn flag-raising only to find Old Gory stained with tell-tale orange clown makeup.   It can really torpedo your day.

Not a typo, by the way -- George M. Cohan's song was originally "You're a Grand Old Rag."  Even in 1906 this was considered disrespectful and, according to the story, Cohan ran around New York buying up every copy of the sheet music before re-writing.  So if you find a yellowed copy of "Grand Old Rag" in grandma's piano bench, hang onto it. 

This must be "Make a Noise, Montana" Day because, while fourteen House Republicans voted not to make Juneteenth a federal holiday, Matthew Rosendale was the one who chose to explain his vote in a lengthy statement.  He didn't even pretend he was trying to save the GDP, like Ron Johnson from Wisconsin.   He -- well, read it if you like.  Montana only has one representative and it's this fucking guy, but at least he hasn't been convicted of assault like his predecessor.  Who is now the governor. 

In still more Montana news -- oh, come on, really? -- election data from the fraudit in Maricopa County, Arizona, has traveled to a "secure lab" (cabin) owned by somebody called Ben Cotton, proprietor of tech subcontractor CyFIR.  Nobody will say how the data, which arrived by car, is being secured.  Under his MyPillow, perhaps.  I can't wait for this farce to open in Fulton County, Georgia.  It's a long drive from Flathead Lake.

Could Ben Cotton be related to Senator Tom?  It's not outrageous to speculate.  The current tenant of William Fulbright's seat, believe it or not, has written to President Biden to demand he pull the US out of the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing so the Chinese can't harvest the precious bodily fluids DNA of American athletes and use it to develop a race of supersoldiers.  But wouldn't we know, because they'd look like Lindsey Vonn?  (I know she's retired but I don't know any other skiers.)  This is what Cotton does all day while waiting for a delivery from Rep. Ronny "Candy Man" Jackson (R-TX).  Candy Man, who used to be Trump's doctor, thinks Biden should take a cognitive exam.  Read all about Ronny's qualifications for office (apart from the spotless cowboy boots) in this Texas Tribune article.  Then be glad he don't doctor no more -- even on Trump.

As for Trump, he and Hannity performed a medley of his greatest lies about covid ("Hydroxychloroquine, now great reviews are coming out on that"), Russia ("We got nothing" from the summit), the balance of trade ("How many Chevrolets are being sold in Berlin?"), his utter innocence on everything, the still-undecided election ("we didn't win but let's see what happens on that") and renewable energy ("windmills all over the place to ruin our land and kill our birds, to kill everything").  Not to mention our ancient enemy:  "Canada is very tough."  Sadly, the interview occurred before the Supreme Court turned down yet another attempt to destroy the Affordable Care Act, with two of his three justices joining the 7-2 majority.  

In other "Putsch comes to shove" news, Andrew Clyde (R-GA) refused even to shake the hand of DC police officer Michael Fanone, who suffered a concussion and a heart attack defending Clyde and his colleagues from tourists on January 6.  Squeak squeak, Andy.  "Every now and again I think we have to be at the bottom of how low we can get," said Adam Kinzinger.  Well, Congressman, nobody's forcing you to remain a Republican.  Perhaps you never heard Gore Vidal's remark, "When you think they've scraped the bottom of the barrel, it turns out there's another barrel."   And he was talking about Sarah Palin.

Never let it be said the government can't move when it has to.  The Juneteenth bill passed yesterday, Biden signed it three hours ago and tomorrow is already a holiday for federal workers.  Let's not everybody bring potato salad to the cookout, OK?



Wednesday, June 16, 2021

The Delta variant

 It sounds like a Robert Ludlum book but it's worse, the latest strain of covid.  The novel coronavirus is no longer novel but wants us to know it's not finished yet and continues to evolve and spread.  Spread faster, because B.1.617.2, first identified in India, is described as more transmissible than the rest as people throw away their masks and crowd into public places.  The good news:  the symptoms are probably no worse than those of Original or New Improved Covid.  But the UK reports a spike of over nine thousand new cases yesterday.  

The world got a lesson in power yesterday; I wonder if America was watching.  Back in March James Quincey, CEO of Coca-Cola, criticized Georgia's new anti-voting laws and was met with a tsunami of rage from the Rightzis.  Trump ordered his disciples to boycott Coke, an action in which he did not participate.  The boycott soon fizzled, even in Surry County, North Carolina, which attempted to ban Coke machines from county buildings.  Yesterday at a press conference during the European Championship in Budapest, Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo spurned the Coke bottles on the table in front of him and held up a bottle of water, exclaiming, "Agua!"  Today Coca-Cola's market price dropped by $4 billion, 1.6 percent.  (Portugal beat Hungary 3-0.)  Ronaldo has almost 300 million followers on Instagram.  Cry more, Donnie.

No, really.  According to Bloomberg Businessweek, before the court moved to summer quarters in New Jersey Trump liked to drop in on private gatherings at Mar a Lago, including memorial services.  No details are offered in the article, so you can use your imagination.  I think if you're holding a memorial at a golf club you deserve to have it hijacked by a delusional egomaniac who almost certainly never met the deceased.  But maybe mourners can use the pool.  I keep thinking of Joe Louis, long past his "Brown Bomber" prime and neck-deep in debt to the IRS, employed as a "greeter" by some Vegas casino.  At least he got to wear a suit and eat well.  Trump evidently wanders around in golf clothes and red cap (carrying a putter like Bob Hope?).  

Speaking of wandering around in the heat in yesterday's clothes, in the brilliantly governed state of Texas temperatures are already well into triple digits.  The Electrical Reliability Council of Texas -- you remember ERCOT from last February's cold snap -- is urging people to avoid using washers, dryers, ovens and other big appliances to reduce demand.  What with making sure everyone can carry a gun with no permit or training, preventing voter "fraud," walling out the illegals and saving civilization from critical race theory, the legislators haven't had a minute to spare for a power grid that ranks with Uganda's.  But corporate taxes are so much lower than California's, and regulations are practically non-existent. Y'all come relocate!  (Summer starts next Monday.)

I can't decide whether it's evidence of media expertise or troubling naivete, but the Biden administration has produced videos calling attention to the dangerous tap water and crumbling roads of eastern Kentucky, the poor part of Moscow Mitch's state.  He doesn't give a crap, so let's see what the residents do.  If the infrastructure bill fails, east Kentuckians can always get in touch with the Huinchiri people of Peru, who are repairing a 500-year-old Incan bridge made of woven string.  It may not support a sixteen-wheeler, but it certainly is beautiful.

If someone applies for a job with your shop and says they worked for "a congressman," it's probably code for Matt Gaetz.  His former helpers, including chief of staff Dan McFaul, are suddenly bashful about their time on The Hill.  And Gaetz hasn't even been indicted yet.

Today we introduce a new feature, Putsch Comes To Shove.  First up, meet 1/6 tourist Jason Riddle, who bragged of drinking wine he looted from an office in the Capitol.  Jason told an interviewer he's running against state representative Ann Kuster.  No, said the interviewer, Kuster actually represents New Hampshire in the US Congress.  "I guess I gotta run against that then," replied Riddle.  He seems bright for a Republican.

Dangerous Dana Rohrabacher was among the throng who broke through police lines that day, but apparently lost his nerve before entering the Capitol -- or possibly Putin's pet couldn't make it up the steps.  He blames "leftist provocateurs" for the riot.  He should listen to Tucker Carlson, who has figured out that "FBI operatives" did it.  Anyway, Antifa appears to be off the hook.  Or did Dana get the name of the leftist who provoked him?

The Capitol Police will finally receive the Congressional Gold Medal for defending the Capitol and all the politicians hiding inside it, despite twenty-one Republicans who voted against it.  One of them, the loathsome dentist Gosar, is still ranting that insurrectionist Ashli Babbitt was "executed" and demanding the name of the shooter.  Remember how Gosar, Gohmert, Boebert, Gaetz, Clyde, Taylor Greene and the rest greeted the patriotic tourists with flowers and Zagnuts?  Yeah, me neither.




Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Never be enough

 "If my book will be the biggest of them all, and with 39 books written or being written about me, does anybody really believe that they are above making a lot of money?  Some of the biggest sleezebags on earth run these companies.  No morals, no nothing, just the bottom line."

With that kind of skill at writing two contradictory sentences without breaking a sweat or knowing what "non sequitur" means, how can one publisher after another hang up on the chance to publish Trump:  Greater Than Lincoln or whatever the working title is?  It can't be because their editors would have to correct the spelling of words like "sleazebag," can it?  Yes, Trump has a whole new complaint:  No one wants his next bestseller.  No reputable publisher will touch what one called "a fact-checking nightmare."  Of course the twice-impeached loser insists that he's turning them down because they won't meet his price.  Of course he is.  

Very very unfair!  Mike Pence has a publisher and he couldn't do a simple job of overturning the election results.  Barack and Michelle Obama have a publisher, as if anybody cares about them.  Junior Trump has a publisher and a political party to bulk-buy his books.  Melania has a picture book showing how she tried to class up the White House, which is a dump.  Even Josh Hawley found a publisher after being CANCELLED by Simon & Schuster.   If the Republicans still controlled Congress there would be hearings!  Harper Collins is owned by Rupert Murdoch, for fuck's sake!  Trump put Fox News on the map!  Will no one publish "the Hemingway of 240 characters"?

Someone will.  For now, though, I'm having too much fun.  Two days ago at this fireworks stand the Organization predicted conspiracy theories would soon blanket the suicide of Christopher Sign, the Birmingham news anchor who catapulted to regional stardom by reporting the Lynch-Clinton meeting in 2016.  Lookie lookie:  Junior Trump jumped in first and now Lauren Boebert wants to know "Why is it that so many who cross the Clinton Crime Syndicate end up dead?"  Junior's a random Trump unemployable but Boebert is still a member of the House of Representatives.  She just accused a former president and a former Secretary of State of murder with no evidence.  Shouldn't she face the same censure Ilhan Omar is threatened with, for criticizing Israel?  Or at least a stern letter from the Speaker?

Words can get you in so much trouble.  Tom Hanks at some point succeeded Jane Fonda as The Show Business Figure the Right Loves To Hate.  I'm damned if I know why.  She went to Hanoi in the middle of the Vietnam War and posed with a gun which could have been used to shoot down John McCain.  Hanks is just a typical liberal who supports good causes, yet he stars in every fresh outbreak of Q Qraziness.  He wrote an op-ed for the New York Times noting that he has been reading American history but the books never mentioned the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre or similar events.  I don't know what he's reading -- there are at least a dozen accounts out there.  If his stomach is strong enough I can personally recommend Philip Dray's At the Hands of Persons Unknown, a history of lynching.  At any rate Hanks ended by recommended that schools "stop the battle to whitewash curriculums to avoid discomfort for students."   A perfectly good, liberal prescription. 

Not good enough for NPR's Eric Deggans, who responded with "Tom Hanks Is a Non-Racist.  It's Time For Him To Be Anti-Racist."  "Anti-racism implies action  -- looking around your universe and taking specific steps to dismantle systemic racism," Deggans wrote, and he's not wrong:  Hanks as a producer has presented a view of history where Black Americans are either marginal or absent (Band of Brothers, The Pacific, From the Earth To the Moon, Parkland).  Maybe his next project could be the 1898 riot in Wilmington, North Carolina, when white supremacists overthrew the newly elected city government and murdered at least sixty people, the only successful coup (so far) in our history.  Just a suggestion; there are others.

For comic relief, Fox News jumped in to fake-defend Hanks, noting sadly, "NPR, Deggans and perpetual protesters -- no matter what Tom Hanks does, it will never be enough."  Those people, am I right, Tom?  Come join us on the white couch, brother.   I don't see Hanks doing a 180 like Reagan ("I didn't leave the Democratic Party, it left me").  But I'm curious about what he will do, even if it will never be enough.  Knowing it will never be enough is coming to grips, at long last, with America's grim history. 

The need for mass entertainment to face that history has never been more acute, as red states rush to discourage and even outlaw the teaching of non-heroic, non-Parson Weems-type history.  Americans get their history from films like Gone With the Wind, and that's just fine with Greg Abbott and his kind.  They must be disappointed that Historic Latta Plantation in North Carolina cancelled its planned event this Saturday, intended to commemorate the sufferings of white people who lost their slaves and had to go live in the woods and eat bugs, or seek other employment now that they had no one to oversee.  It sounds like a Key and Peele sketch but it was someone's idea of celebrating June 19 (Juneteenth), of all jaw-dropping things.  The site manager Ian Campbell is African American, so now we've wandered into Dave Chappelle territory.  I'm starting to see how Mark Robinson became lieutenant governor.  North Carolina needs to get its head straight and kicking Lara Trump to the curb is a good place to start.  When the would-be senatorette isn't urging Texans to shoot migrants at the border she's questioning Kamala Harris's qualifications to be Vice President.  Well, we can still laugh. 



Sunday, June 13, 2021

Stilts and steroids

 You don't know the name Christopher Sign unless you live in Birmingham, Alabama (my sympathies), but you will.  Sign was the reporter who first revealed that Bill Clinton visited with Attorney General Loretta Lynch while both were becalmed in the Phoenix airport in 2016.  He even wrote a book about the far-from-secret meeting called Secret On the Tarmac.  And now he is dead by suicide, or as it's certainly being reported elsewhere on the web, KILLARY MURDERZ AGAIN LOCK HER UP!!1!   It's Vince Foster all over again, now with more Seth Rich.  Especially since he worked for Sinclair Broadcast Group.

For purposes of comparison it's helpful to have living witnesses to previous criminal presidencies, like John Dean.  CNN sought him out when the story broke about the Sessions-Whitaker-Barr Justice Department spying on reporters and members of Congress (Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell that we know of).  According to Dean, Nixon wanted the Mitchell DOJ to bring a criminal action against the leakers of the Pentagon Papers and was told to pound sand.  Dean calls the Trump gang  "Nixon on stilts and steroids."  Former federal prosecutor Glenn Kirschner prefers "unabated crime wave as president."  They would probably agree that it's disingenuous of Joe Biden to talk up democracy and the rule of law at the G7 while his own Justice Department lets Trump remain at large, and even continues to defend him in the Jean Carroll defamation suit.  

Perhaps we need the other side of the story.  Perhaps we'll get it when Trump completes the mother of all memoirs or something.  Yes, he's writing and writing (he says) when not wandering around his golf property looking for wedding parties to crash.  Why so literate literary?  Gossip queen Mags Haberman says "Pence's book deal is said to have been grating on him."  Simon & Schuster is supposedly paying Mike Pence $4 million for his account of what it feels like to flee a lynch mob in the Capitol, and probably other things.  Yeah, that would grate, especially when you depend on the kindness of gullible strangers to keep the lights on:

"Life is unfair."  (Jimmy Carter)

Get out your shocked face -- an investigation by Huffpost has identified twelve participants in the January 6 coup attempt who have a history of violence against women.   ("Nancy?  Where are you, Nancy?")  I wonder if that includes Karol Chwiesiuk of the Chicago Police Department, who wore a CPD sweatshirt and sent selfies with messages like "Knocked out a commie last night" and "We inside the capitol."  His police career has been terminated.

State Representative Mike Nearman admitted some armed protesters to the Oregon state house in December and now the legislature has shown him the door with a vote of 59-1.  No one has ever been expelled from the state legislature before but these are not normal times.  Why are the January 6 seditionists still in Congress?  It's a mystery.


Thursday, June 10, 2021

From the howls of Montezuma

 When we last met Greg Kelly of Newsmax and the United States Marines, he was sharing his discovery that Obama and Lee Oswald lived in the East 90s of Manhattan, some decades apart.  It's revelations like this that make Newsmax aficionados hunker down and hug their AK-47s a little closer.

It was no fluke.  Jarhead Greg is holding down the Twitter for Trump with some of the most surreal prose since Donald Barthelme.  Just today he advised that he loves Snoopy (the dog from Peanuts, you remember, cartoon strip by Charles Schulz who died twenty-one years ago).  All right, that's odd but kind of nice.  I liked Doonesbury but I rarely bring it up out of context.  But Greg isn't through:  a friend of his who always wore glasses got contact lenses and now he's angry and disoriented and "It takes me like SIX MONTHS to get used to the "new look" -- SOMEONE I know has just "ditched the shades" -- put them back on.  NOW!!"  All right, Greg, calm down (backing toward door).  But he is not through, SIR!


Yeah, who gave this so-called doctor permission to sit in the President's own chair and leaf through a binder?  Is she a G7 specialist like Princess Ivanka?  Not that Biden is the "REAL PRESIDENT" anyway, as we will all see in August.  What kind of classified material is she "reading"?  Is that even a "pen" or a COMPUTER for scanning the top-secret pages and sending them to her handlers in Beijing?  

Could be names of the spouses of G7 leaders with whom she has to make small talk.  Like Carrie Symonds, who she has never met as she has been Mrs. Boris Johnson for about two weeks.  Or Mariko Suga, whose husband has been prime minister of Japan only since October.  Cyril Ramaphosa will be a guest -- it would be nice if she could pick him out of a crowd.  Could Greg?  You call this "Helping 'Old Man Joe'"?  Well, yes.  It's why First Ladies are given their own staff.  

Right now, with Greg Kelly losing his shit because Jill Biden is reading a binder and Michael Flynn calling for a Myanmar-style coup, I'm starting to wonder if we still need a Marine Corps.  He goes on and on, his photo looking more demented:

This Marine got a mad on!  The "Stone Ballon PUB"  is actually the Stone Balloon Tavern and Concert Hall, opened by Jill and then-husband Bill Stevenson near the University of Delaware in 1972.  It hosted such acts as Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, and is the place where young Greg Kelly struck out with two waitresses and at least three customers, ALLEGEDLY.  Jill Stevenson was never a pole dancer there, as Kelly seems to be suggesting.  Maybe she shot him down, too.

Kelly will go HULKSMASH! when he sees this:

His employer, Newsmax, recently declined to hire Matt Gaetz.  So they do have some standards.


Wednesday, June 09, 2021


 Some days the world just looks like one of those nasty-looking tabloids that used to grace supermarket checkout lines.  Today in "Hillary's alien baby" news:

Mama needs a new wimple!  Sister Mary Margaret Kreuper, retired principal of St. James Catholic school in Torrance, California, admitted she embezzled $835,000 in church funds over ten years to cover her gambling debts.  She's said to be contrite.

Is Kim Jong-un dying?  Or is he just looking fabulous on the Pyongyang diet?  Inquiring minds want to know!

Doctor Why?  It's been nearly a year since Dr. Stella Immanuel claimed her fifteen minutes of fame, when Trump signed on to her demons-and-hydroxychloroquine theory of covid.  There's a new crackpot in town and her name, I swear, is Dr. Sherri Tenpenny.  She told the Ohio legislature that there's metal in the vaccine which makes recipients magnetic, because 5G cellphone towers.  It's proven!  Remember, she's a licensed doctor.  In Ohio.

Did the ginger duke and his American wife have royal permission to name their daughter Lilibet?  This is a very major important question, apparently, and no doubt we will hear more in days to come.  Imagine if they had called her Helix or Edible.

Do you want it fast or perfect?  A study by Public Health Scotland found a slightly higher risk of a rare blood disorder in people who received the Oxford/AstraZeneca covid vaccine.  Jonas Salk took six years to develop his polio vaccine in the days before gene sequencing.  This one rolled out in about six months.

Infrastructure Week is here!  In Texas.  Levees around Mission, Texas, were dismantled to build Trump's WALL and now the Army Corps of Engineers is rushing to replace them before hurricane season.  Even Ted Cruz wrote a letter to Joe Biden demanding action, without acknowledging that Trump is once again the cause of the crisis.  And yet Cruz and the other seditionists won't vote for the infrastructure bill because "the era of bipartisanship is over."  A little louder, Mitch, Joe Manchin can't hear you.

The movement for women's suffrage began in New York, specifically Seneca Falls in 1848.  So a lot of New York women will be wondering why Kristen Gillibrand couldn't be arsed to vote on the Paycheck Fairness Act.  It would have sent a message in spite of the Manchin Filibuster.  (May as well give credit from now on, it's his only notable achievement.)



Tuesday, June 08, 2021

His mind did what?

Thanks, Michael Bender, I needed a laugh.

In "Frankly We Did Win This Election":  The Inside Story of How Trump Lost, Bender of the Wall Street Journal shares the amusing theory that Trump's misogyny handcuffed his own effort to evade prosecution by hiding in the White House until 2025 (or until a lifetime of drug abuse and poor eating habits took its inevitable toll).  Advised by such shrewd political thinkers as Dick Morris and Sean Hannity, Trump became convinced that Joe Biden was the perfect opponent, too old and decrepit to represent a serious threat.  Morris evidently persuaded him that the Democratic National Committee would ignore all the primaries Biden won and summarily replace him with either Hillary Clinton or Michelle Obama.  The Stable Genius therefore "took it easy" on Biden.  How do you smear a white Christian heterosexual man who's only four years older than you?  You're pretty much reduced to smearing his son for making some poor decisions.

Trump, Bender writes, "had often complained that his early attack on [Elizabeth] Warren had damaged her presidential bid, which he regretted because he viewed her as an easier opponent.  Now he worried that a heavy blitz of attack ads would hasten the secret plot [my italics] being hatched by Democrats, and his mind raced with who they might select in Biden's place."

His mind raced.  Mr. Bender, you can't write things like that without warning.  What if I was drinking liquid?  You would owe me a keyboard.  Trump's mind can no more race than it can do a double-backward twist like Simone Biles.  I won't deny there's a certain low cunning at work there, but all his "mind" did was regurgitate the bullshit Morris was feeding it.  Then he remembered that he trailed in every reputable poll and panicked at the thought of losing to a woman.  (Michelle Obama didn't even want to be First Lady much less run for office, and Hillary Clinton is entitled to enjoy herself now.  It's just possible Trump could have defeated Tulsi Gabbard.)

More people voted last November than in any previous presidential election in spite of a pandemic, a postal system on life support and the Jim Crow laws already on the books.  Trump did that.  Eighty-one million Americans said, "This must stop."  Or "I can't listen to that whining voice or look at that face like an old catcher's mitt dipped in marmalade one more time."  Or even "Hey, I like Joe Biden."  It's his one positive achievement in 74 years.  Just don't use phrases like "his mind raced," even if you're accustomed to writing for the Wall Street Journal. just had to deny the rumor that he put his baggy pants on backwards for the North Carolina hate rally last Saturday.  I can't watch it but I've seen the pictures, and I think it could go either way.