Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Grabbing the hog

 Somewhere between the golden elevator and the golden toilet, I lost an important reflex -- the capacity to be surprised by Trump.  I can fake it but I can't make my knee joint respond to the rubber hammer anymore.  The avalanche of criminality, stupidity, avarice and moral insufficiency was too much.  An occasional whimper of outrage is all I can manage now.

Like most people I had never heard of Molly Michael.  When I hit the google she wasn't even the first Molly who came up on this, the noisiest day of her life (I'm guessing), although it says she's a "well-known media figure."  (Who isn't?)  It says she was Trump's executive assistant and I think I can guess why he hired her.

I'm not saying backrubs were part of her assignment, but I'm not saying they weren't.  Whatever she did -- McDonald's run, order Titleists, fire Fauci -- her instructions were apparently scrawled on the backs of some of those stolen classified documents that caused Jack Smith to become deranged.  Upon hearing that the FBI wanted to talk to Michael about this, Trump told her, "You don't know anything about the boxes."  She talked to them anyway.  I guess she's not his type anymore.

Like Jesus, Tim Ballard has been portrayed on film by Jim Caviezel.  Unlike Jesus, Ballard has been accused of sexually harassing colleagues at Operation Underground Railroad, an organization  supposedly dedicated to taking down child traffickers.  According to Vice he was forced out last June for skeevy behavior toward female employees during overseas trips.  The QAnon conspiracist was an adviser to the Trump administration, so draw your own conclusions.

No doubt Ballard will find at least one Democrat to blame for his sleaziness.  Lauren Boebert has.  She was shocked -- shocked -- to discover that her Beetlejuice date is a Democrat and owns a bar which hosted drag shows.  Like the talking serpent in that book he led her to destruction and has now been D-U-M-P-E-D.  Of course, she is still a punch line.  Not surprisingly, the best line came from John Fetterman:  "If I take up vaping and grabbing the hog during a live musical, they'll make me a folk hero."  You already are, Senator.

Five Americans have returned from captivity in Iran in a complicated four-country deal.  Qatar brokered the arrangement which saw the five exchanged for five Iranians held in the US, while $6 billion in Iranian funds was unfrozen by South Korea with restrictions (humanitarian uses only).  Three of the Iranians decided not to go home.  Already the Republicans are complaining that this diplomatic triumph will only encourage Iran to take more hostages.  And what about the Americans in Russia, huh?

Another thing that will piss off the party of decorum and good taste was Volodymyr Zelenskiy's speech to the UN General Assembly today.  Not only did he accuse their favorite dictator of genocide for abducting thousands of Ukrainian children, as the Nazis once stole "Aryan-looking" Polish children and gave them to Germans to raise.  (Most never found their birth parents again.)  He did it without a suit and a tie.  How is this guy even a president?  

Today is Talk Like a Pirate Day but perhaps it would better be called Talk Like Robert Newton Day.  The actor's portrayal of Long John Silver in Treasure Island (1950) is primarily responsible for the impression that all pirates spoke in the accent of the west country (he was born in Dorset).  Actually they sounded more like Michael Caine.  I don't know, I'm guessing.  Anyway, let's see what's going on across the sea.

Keir Starmer is not prime minister yet but he seems to be talking to the leaders of Germany and France about the UK rejoining the European Union as an "associate member."  Nobody knows what that means as it has never happened before.  But even a senior Tory like Lord Heseltine says it needs to be studied.

SUNAK TO BIRMINGHAM:  DROP DEAD has not yet been a tabloid headline but it could be.  The city is bankrupt and may have to sell off assets including the Central Library and the airport.  Who buys an airport?  Please, not Richard Branson.  He had enough trouble running a railroad.

The Brits love their dogs, not wisely but maybe too well.  Three people have been diagnosed with brucella canis, a disease which causes lameness and infertility in dogs and can cause septicemia and meningitis in humans.  This may be of interest to the doing-my-own-research folks who refuse to have their dogs vaccinated because they think it will make them autistic.  (Not really.)

Russell Brand is a sleazebag.  Listen if you care, and there's no reason you should.  He's getting support from lots of other sleazebags but YouTube has de-monetized his channel.  (YT is severe about rape, maybe overly so.  I recently watched a doc about World War II and they bleeped the title of Iris Chang's book The Rape of Nanking.)

Not British but too bizarre to omit:  Kais Saied, the president of Tunisia, was talking about Storm Daniel, which caused catastrophic flooding in Libya:  "Didn't anyone wonder why the name Daniel was chosen?  Because the Zionist movement has infiltrated minds and thinking, we've fallen into a cognitive coma."  Yes, they control the weather with their space lasers.


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