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July 03, 2017

Comments

Let's see... In addition to the Dems dragging things out, Trump has said he will not fill many (hundreds?) of the appointed positions because they are unnecessary (perhaps he is not so far behind as we think); nominated candidates seem to be taking a long time finishing the large amount of paperwork needed [1]; in at least a couple of cases, Republican committee chairs are sitting on a nomination because they would prefer to handle all three openings on that particular board in one meeting.

[1] If Bush's was the CEO administration, Trump's is the LLC administration. Among other things, we are learning that our disclosure and conflict-of-interest filings are ill-suited to someone who operates in the LLC world. My perception is that to stay within the lines, such nominees are required to dismantle their businesses to the extent that there's no business to go back to after their time in office.

This week, the Economist offers A special report on Donald Trump’s America. I was particularly taken by this:

The ANES [American National Election Study] also asks voters whether the Republicans or Democrats are more conservative, and found that some 15% of Trump voters thought the Democrats were the more conservative party (as did 6% of Clinton voters). Add in the don’t knows, and 16% of Clinton voters and 24% of Trump voters were not sure which party was more conservative.
Read that again. 10% of voters think that Democrats are the more conservative party, and another 10% aren't sure which is the more conservative party. The mind boggles.

FWIW, the holiday leaves me with mixed feelings. It's been a while since I've felt a sense of enthusiasm about being American.

We're not doing well, as a nation. And we're not making any progress toward addressing the reasons for that.

It's not an occasion for celebration. Or, I don't find it so. Regrettably.

We always do a big fireworks thing in my town, but my wife and I will likely stay home. It's too sad.

10% of voters think that Democrats are the more conservative party

i would probably be among them, for a number of definitions of "conservative".

Russell, perhaps it would help to look at the fireworks, etc. as a celebration of what we aspire to be.

not for me, this year. i'm not clear about what we aspire to be these days.

enjoy the day everyone, and stay safe.

There were days when fireworks were active pacifism (of the unintended kind). Some kings used up more gunpowder for a single fireworks display than Napoleon needed for a full-scale battle (or the army at peace time for a full year).
These days it is just turning money into acrid smoke. Does it rival napalm in the morning?

First, a little holiday humor:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tflkVVJL-PA

Second, I've been thinking about republican fuckwad's CNN assault video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ci4QZ82n2i8

I don't have the expertise to do this, but it seems to me, given the stinking, lying conservative penchant for countering violent assaults with massive amounts of gunfire, someone should construct a video, using the Reddit original as its basis and which was made for the White House to release as a violent threat to the press and decent Americans, that depicts the assault, but in our funnier, truer version the CNN individual assaulted by trump manages while trump has him on the ground to remove a firearm from his WWF tux and shoot the aggressor, a gummint one no less, thru his black heart, you know, in self-defense as Wayne LaPierre advises.

The video should be released by news outlets insisting that it is real news event, not fake news, which I think would stir filth conservatives into some netherworld paraoxsym of ultra-fake news, since it's clear conservatives have no idea any longer of the difference between the fact and horseshit.

In answer, the left should insist the new video depicting the violent demise of the thug filth, in an act of lawful, innocent delf-defense, is indeed fact and all denials by the filthy Right that the toupeed perp is fucking dead should be met with a hurricane of accusations that the White House is, as always, peddling fake news.

Get them coming and going.

Meanwhile, this guy:

http://usnewz.com/2017/07/02/meet-racist-anti-semitic-reddit-troll-who-claims-credit-trumps-anti-cnn-body-slam-tweet

He's the leader of a sub-Reddit den (400,000 followers and counting) of pure Evil ... racist, anti-Semitic, anti-gay, anti-woman, anti-Muslim projectile vomiting ... and his video was chosen specifically and for all of those motives by the republican White House den of pure Evil .... racist, anti-Semitic, anti-gay, anti-woman, anti-Muslim .. in a word, what the right in every culture, in every epoch, has always thought of these fellow human beings: as vermin to be destroyed.

trump is referred to on the sub-reddit site by his racist, murderous assmunchers as the God Emperor and trump appreciates this, believe me.

He loves, he revels in it. Especially (as he sits on his commodious, solid-gold bathroom throne) coming from racist, anti-Semitic, anti-woman, anti-gay, Mulsim-hating, gummint-hating, tax-hating pieces of republican shit who frequent the threads.

The People, as he calls them.

redditt needs to be hacked. The identity and location of the individual who created the trump/CNN must be identified so he can be found (I volunteer) and physically hurt in such a way that his fellow conservative filth beg .. beg, for gummint protection from the God Emperor.

Hurt physically in such a way that the Founders of this country and their hapless militias on this hallowed national holiday would approve of, considering all of the other fucking shit they approved of.

No fireworks for me either.

Another paragon of lying, corrupt republican inhumanity embraced and elevated by trump and the republican party:

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/edblog/meet-trumps-new-bff-jacob-wohl

I think Wohl is a good fit to oversee the dismantling of Dodd-Frank to enable republicans in all walks of life to lie, cheat, and steal from, and frankly, kill their fellow Americans with impunity.

I watched fireworks last night. I went to the end of the street and sat in the local grocery parking lot with about 50 people.

I was reminded this week, on 60 minutes?, that Adams and Jefferson didn't speak for over a decade after their campaign, until someone reminded them of the things they so fervently mutually believed in. It brings to mind the the people I have respected for their ability to disagree with respect through my lifetime.

This too shall pass. The courage and thoughtfulness of those people who created this country, stood their ground, fought and died for our freedom literally, and then spent the time and work to craft a vision that we still strive to live up today deserves our celebration.


Human beings compartmentalize in odd ways.

For example, I made a nice clam stew the other week (hard-shell, not the soft variety mentioned in this article):

http://www.dailyjournal.net/2017/07/04/us-clam-trouble/

Two sentences stick out:

"Beal said the predators are the biggest threat faced by the clams."

“It’s not that there’s not clams,” he said. “It’s that they don’t survive.”

Which predators are the biggest threat to the clams, they wonder?

Me. Yum!

But the spokespeople just don't seem to be able to identify the predator who is eating all of the clams.

"It's that they don't survive". Yeah, no kidding. Scratching of heads all around.

Lewis Carroll knew who was eating the missing mollusks:

'The sun was shining on the sea,
Shining with all his might:
He did his very best to make
The billows smooth and bright--
And this was odd, because it was
The middle of the night.

The moon was shining sulkily,
Because she thought the sun
Had got no business to be there
After the day was done--
"It's very rude of him," she said,
"To come and spoil the fun!"

The sea was wet as wet could be,
The sands were dry as dry.
You could not see a cloud, because
No cloud was in the sky:
No birds were flying overhead--
There were no birds to fly.

The Walrus and the Carpenter
Were walking close at hand;
They wept like anything to see
Such quantities of sand:
"If this were only cleared away,"
They said, "it would be grand!"

"If seven maids with seven mops
Swept it for half a year.
Do you suppose," the Walrus said,
"That they could get it clear?"
"I doubt it," said the Carpenter,
And shed a bitter tear.

"O Oysters, come and walk with us!"
The Walrus did beseech.
"A pleasant walk, a pleasant talk,
Along the briny beach:
We cannot do with more than four,
To give a hand to each."

The eldest Oyster looked at him,
But never a word he said:
The eldest Oyster winked his eye,
And shook his heavy head--
Meaning to say he did not choose
To leave the oyster-bed.

But four young Oysters hurried up,
All eager for the treat:
Their coats were brushed, their faces washed,
Their shoes were clean and neat--
And this was odd, because, you know,
They hadn't any feet.

Four other Oysters followed them,
And yet another four;
And thick and fast they came at last,
And more, and more, and more--
All hopping through the frothy waves,
And scrambling to the shore.

The Walrus and the Carpenter
Walked on a mile or so,
And then they rested on a rock
Conveniently low:
And all the little Oysters stood
And waited in a row.

"The time has come," the Walrus said,
"To talk of many things:
Of shoes--and ships--and sealing-wax--
Of cabbages--and kings--
And why the sea is boiling hot--
And whether pigs have wings."

"But wait a bit," the Oysters cried,
"Before we have our chat;
For some of us are out of breath,
And all of us are fat!"
"No hurry!" said the Carpenter.
They thanked him much for that.

"A loaf of bread," the Walrus said,
"Is what we chiefly need:
Pepper and vinegar besides
Are very good indeed--
Now if you're ready, Oysters dear,
We can begin to feed."

"But not on us!" the Oysters cried,
Turning a little blue.
"After such kindness, that would be
A dismal thing to do!"
"The night is fine," the Walrus said.
"Do you admire the view?

"It was so kind of you to come!
And you are very nice!"
The Carpenter said nothing but
"Cut us another slice:
I wish you were not quite so deaf--
I've had to ask you twice!"

"It seems a shame," the Walrus said,
"To play them such a trick,
After we've brought them out so far,
And made them trot so quick!"
The Carpenter said nothing but
"The butter's spread too thick!"

"I weep for you," the Walrus said:
"I deeply sympathize."
With sobs and tears he sorted out
Those of the largest size,
Holding his pocket-handkerchief
Before his streaming eyes.

"O Oysters," said the Carpenter,
"You've had a pleasant run!
Shall we be trotting home again?'
But answer came there none--
And this was scarcely odd, because
They'd eaten every one.'

The Walrus and the Carpenter spokesperson pointed a fake news finger at the green crabs and the ribbon worms, to be sure.

i'm not clear about what we aspire to be these days.

Well, we've always aspired to a variety of, sometimes mutually incompatible, things. To take just the obvious example, for over a century there were folks in the Deep South who aspired to a world where the South (or at least its views on race relations) had won the Civil War.

So I go with knowing what *I* aspire to for my country. And celebrating that it is possible to work peacefully (if not as rapidly as I would prefer) towards achieving it.

Marty 12:01 -- well said.

Marty, I agree that we should celebrate the gamble the Founders took on us:

http://www.thedailybeast.com/gambling-habits-of-the-founding-fathers?via=newsletter&source=DDMorning

The heightened predation from the crabs and worms has tracked in line with rising coastal water temperatures, which are predicted to keep rising, he said.

Lobsters are moving north, too.

This too shall pass. And it's not likely to come back.

Since I seem to be in a maudlin mood, I'll note that it always kind of cracks me up when dudes like Cliven Bundy go on about their Traditional Way Of Life being jerked around by the dastardly feds.

They've been ranching on that patch for, by god it must be 100 years!

People around here have been making their living out of the north Atlantic for five or six hundred years.

Kiss it good bye.

Russell, you might also want to consider this, from Leonard Pitts a couple of days ago:

[We have] reason to hope, but no guarantee. All we have is a fighting chance.

But America has never needed more than that.

To abandon hope is to guarantee that we will not succeed. IMHO

There is a difference between having no hope, and being disinclined to celebrate.

I'm not inclined to celebrate the United States of America today. I do not believe we are a nation that deserves celebration today. I'm not sure we are a nation at all, today, nor am I sure that I wish to be part of the same nation as many folks who live here, today.

I appreciate that you're trying to be encouraging, but I'm not encouraged, because I do not see reason for encouragement.

We're living through some truly rank bullshit. I won't applaud it. Nor will I applaud what this nation has been in the past, because to the degree that we have a legacy worth celebrating, we are pissing on that legacy today.

It offends me, profoundly, as an American, and frankly as a human being.

So somebody else will have to go to the party today.

I'm doing some chores. My wife and I will go to a good friend's for a burger later on. Then we'll come home. I have some work to do, I'll probably play some vibes, and I'm reading Braudel's "Memories of the Mediterranean", which is more than interesting.

And that'll be my holiday.

All y'all enjoy yours as best suits you. Don't blow yourselves up!

I don't see government as the embodiment and soul of the country. So, I feel optimism for the country and disdain for government.

People around here have been making their living out of the north Atlantic for five or six hundred years.

Kiss it good bye

The Canadian government, at the eleventh minute of the eleventh hour, closed its collapsed N. Atlantic cod fishery a quarter-century ago, in 1992.

In the last two years, fisheries scientists have seen the beginnings of a comeback. The population of adult cod seems to be doubling roughly every three years.

"Some elements of work
Persist, with difficulty, here on Earth"

joel, thanks. yes, cod are coming back, but the whole fishery is moving further north because of water temps.

it'll work out one way or the other.

I'm gonna lay out for the rest of the day, enough harshing of mellows from me for now.

Hope everyone has a great holiday. Don't blow yourself up, and I'll see you on the flip side.

joel hanes, either it should have been elements of worth, or you misquoted on purpose. Either makes sense.... I had to look it up to find the poem, which rang only a very faint bell.

Given it is a riposte of sorts to the Housman Epitaph on an Army of Mercenaries, it reminds me somehow of the wonderful Roger Woddis "parody" (which I often think of in these dark days) of Yeats's Song of Wandering Aengus. Given that this is an open thread, and we have already had poetry -

Yeats:

The Song of Wandering Aengus

I went out to the hazel wood,
Because a fire was in my head,
And cut and peeled a hazel wand,
And hooked a berry to a thread;
And when white moths were on the wing,
And moth-like stars were flickering out,
I dropped the berry in a stream
And caught a little silver trout.

When I had laid it on the floor
I went to blow the fire a-flame,
But something rustled on the floor,
And someone called me by my name:
It had become a glimmering girl
With apple blossom in her hair
Who called me by my name and ran
And faded through the brightening air.

Though I am old with wandering
Through hollow lands and hilly lands,
I will find out where she has gone,
And kiss her lips and take her hands;
And walk among long dappled grass,
And pluck till time and times are done,
The silver apples of the moon,
The golden apples of the sun.


Woddis:

The Hero

I went out to the city streets
Because a fire was in my head
And saw the people passing by
And wished the smallest of them dead,
And twisted by a bitter past,
And poisoned by a cold despair,
I found at last a resting place
And left my hatred ticking there.
When I was fleeing from the night
And sweating in my room again,
I heard the old futilities
Exploding like a cry of pain;
But horror, should it touch the heart,
Would freeze my hand upon the fuse,
And I must shed no tears for those
Who merely have a life to lose.
Though I am sick with murdering
Though killing is my native land,
I will find out where death has gone,
And kiss his lips and take his hand;
And hide among the withered grass,
And pluck, till love and life are done,
The shrivelled apples of the moon,
The cankered apples of the sun.

Pedantry here:

"Country" is a geographic term. The part of North America that lies between Canada and Mexico is a country.

"Nation" is an ethnographic term. The people who make up a nation don't have to live in a single country (cf the Kurds), and the people living in a single country are not necessarily one nation (cf the Israelis).

"State" is a political term. It implies a territory with a population and a government. A country with a nation living in it that has no government is not a state.

In this terminology, it is a bit odd to be proud of one's "country"; Nature made it, not patriots or any other sort of people. It is less odd, but still somewhat presumptuous, to be proud of one's "nation"; perhaps an exception can be made for voluntary immigrants through a port of entry, but involuntary immigrants through the maternity ward can hardly claim credit or accept blame for the character of their "nation".

Now, when it comes to pride in one's state, there's little to cavil about. At least in a democratic state, where the government is of the people, by the people, and for the people, individual persons can rationally be proud of what they each had a small hand in building and sustaining.

Of course, my pedantic distinctions between "country", "nation", and "state" mean nothing in the popular discourse. So I can hardly fault CharlesWT for writing "I feel optimism for the country and disdain for government", because he's surely less pedantic than I am.

--TP

GfnNC: Yes, a thinko. My mind knows perfectly well that it's "elements of worth", and I said "worth" in my head, but typed "work".

I can't even blame autocorrect.

"[a nation is] a group of people united by a mistaken view about the past and a hatred of their neighbours". [8]
--Political historian Karl Deutsch
Nationalism and its Alternatives
ISBN 0-394-43763-2

Ben Sidran
“Free In America”
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dvI7NHAEqCU

Benedict Anderson's definition of a nation, which I found very useful over decades of teaching about nationalism:

it is an imagined political community-and imagined as both inherently limited and sovereign. It is imagined because the members of even the smallest nation will never know most of their fellow-members, meet them, or even hear of them, yet in the minds of each lives the image of their communion.... Communities are to be distinguished, not by their falsity/genuineness, but by the style in which they are imagined.... Finally, [the nation] is imagined as a community, because, regardless of the actual inequality and exploitation that may prevail in each, the nation is conceived as a deep, horizontal comradeship.

http://www.cnn.com/2017/07/04/politics/kfile-reddit-user-trump-tweet/index.html

There will be no sniveling apology from the hatemeister in the White House.

https://twitter.com/jysexton/status/881619803080986626

uday trump junior, the racist anti-semite republican, is spreading rumors that the racist, anti-Semite republican reddit author of the video his presidential sperm donor father-in-name-only commissioned is 15-years old.

The cuck perp is a middle-aged man.

The cuck perp who hired him is 70 years old and polluting the linen in the White House.

Meanwhile, yet another white Christian male assholeamerican republican represents ugly abroad. Can't bring himself to say "Jew" or "Jewish" as he stands where some of his right wing constituents want to reenact the Holocaust, but make it more inclusive next time.

https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2017/7/5/1678018/-Republican-Congressman-Clay-Higgins-records-political-commercial-inside-Auschwitz-gas-chamber

Beyond parody:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2017/07/05/some-trump-supporters-thought-npr-tweeted-propaganda-it-was-the-declaration-of-independence/?utm_term=.bb8b802e416b

I can remember being really frustrated with the way email was being used a decade or so ago. That frustration has waned significantly since. I don't know if people, generally, became more mature about email or if the stupidity was simply redirected elsewhere as newer forms of communication came about.

Is there any hope that people will become more mature about using social media, and that the kind of crap described in the last couple of comments will become less common?

Facebook seems to have replaced the "chain letter" emails I use to get.

HSH, I think you're right. The insanity merely moves around as new forms of communication become available. The good news is, it leaves the newest-1 forms available for the rest of us.

Is there any hope that people will become more mature about using social media, and that the kind of crap described in the last couple of comments will become less common?

is this a rhetorical question?

is this a rhetorical question?

Not sure. Is this? ;^)

Facebook seems to have replaced the "chain letter" emails I use to get.

Absolutely. But I've even found that the use of email in the workplace has improved. I used to see and participate in raging debates with long emails going back and forth (almost like comment threads here sometimes get) over stuff that would be better settled face-to-face. That doesn't seem to happen much these days.

I think the few people who still try to use email that way just get ignored or tersely rebuffed now, so the flames don't spread.

Not sure. Is this? ;^)

depends. ;^)

There's a particularly despicable type of Facebook denizen that post stock images of people, usually babies and children, suffering from serious ailments or disabilities. They give them a name and backstory. Then they plead for likes, shares, supportive comments for the identity they've created.

This just happened:

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/renaissance-technologies-time-inc

In the financial hands of insane conservative filth now ... Mercer(nary). Here's why and what comes next (You'll have to read the entire thing):

http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/07/03/the-national-enquirers-fervor-for-trump

Mr Pecker's (yes, we're deep into a Dickensian/Pynchonian naming of the lurid, scum villains destroying America) trump-worshiping National Enquirer is my go-to reading now to keep abreast (that, too) of the goings on in the cheap, tawdry, tiny-handed reality show travesty that is the God King's and republican party's gutting of the United States of America to sell the pieces of it on Ebay like so many sexually explicit tchotchkes.

Pecker, yes, Pecker will make of Time and Sports Illustrated and the other publications what he has made of the Enquirer and what trump and his virulent legions have made of social media.

The NPR posting of the Declaration of Independence on Twitter and the taking of it by brainless conservative pond dwellers, whom I expect carry a copy themselves in their camo pockets for apparently infrequent reference, except for the passages on wanking, as liberal Alinsky twaddle is a beautiful thing to behold.

I'm recently in receipt of Gibbon's six volume set of "The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire" and I looked up "butt stupid" in the index to no avail, so the soon to appear "Decline and Fall of America" will apparently break new ground in plumbing the reasons for ... the Occam's Razor by which we are slitting our own throats ... and the origins of the end of empires.

Then we have Mark Hyman yes, ladies and gentleman, Mr Mark Hyman (no virgin snowflake when it comes to conservative propaganda) of Sinclair media soon to own local stations of Tribune Media in order to spread their infected conservative feces all over local news:

https://www.mediamatters.org/video/2017/07/03/john-oliver-highlights-sinclair-broadcast-groups-consolidation-local-news-push-their-conservative/217139

But I've even found that the use of email in the workplace has improved.

The last couple of large employers I had tended to attract legal actions. Not through wrong-doing on their part, it was just the nature of the businesses. Training hammered the point that e-mail was subject to discovery, so think twice about what you'd just written before hitting send.

Always an interesting day when you get to work and your cubicle entry is blocked with yellow tape, and there's a typed notice that your space is off limits until legal is done with things.

http://washingtonmonthly.com/2017/07/05/dear-trump-voters-the-1950s-arent-coming-back/

At least they are trying to murder their own as well. How murderously egalitarian of them:

http://digbysblog.blogspot.com/2017/07/one-of-trumps-fabled-forgotten-men.html

Some hobby:

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/us-confiscates-ancient-iraqi-artifacts-hobby-lobby

I did this myself just yesterday at the airport. Disembarked from the private jet and .. wait ... where the fuck is my limo, again, you bozos place it right in front of me:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JECAjrP39Ag

And I didn't have Vincent Vega from Pulp Fiction helping me out either.

Must have been snowing a blizzard on Air Force One for the absolutely cranked God King.

This is some gloriously sick shit:

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/dreher/worshiping-america-first-baptist-dallas-trump/

These people will kill.

http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/07/10/americas-future-is-texas

No, it's not. We aren't going to permit conservative fetuses in suits and packing heat to murder born children and their mothers, not to mention anyone who is not white, male, and fucking stupid.

I believe in war against the State of Texas.

Nuclear war.

Kill them or they are going to kill us.

Coal mining and the miners, according to lying republican trump:

https://www.facebook.com/WVPublic/posts/10153006493471471

I've lost track of what goes in what thread, so apologies, but (although this is a tweet, for which apologies) I thought it vital to show you that these professors of German are, as we say in the UK, the dog's bollocks (meaning the tops):

https://twitter.com/PickardJE/status/882884044932997122/photo/1

Too many apologies, curse that bad proofreading!

I'm patriotic, so I hung a flag out on the porch. Upside down. Then I spent the day posting articles about Republican actions on my FB page.

There is nothing too evil for people in large groups to do. Yes, it can happen here. And we are a good ways down the road to authoritarian corporate control, which means decision making based on short term profit, the values of a drug dealer. Rape and pillage. The death of the natural world and everything beautiful. We are headed for a distopia based on Social Darwinism and greed, the values of the Republican party.

I am glad that I am old and have no children. I feel a great deal of contempt for the political aspect of the lives of those who vote Republican. I mean I condemn their participation in politics, but not other aspects of their lives and decision-making, but their failure of citizenship is every bit as bad as the failure of Germans in the lead up to Hitler, and with less excuse.

Humans in large groups nearly always behave badly and over time as "civilization" "developed" human power has increased with no increase either in empathy or wisdom.

I will keep fighting because, like I said, I'm patriotic. But I dont have any expectation of winning in the long run. The Republican party, as an instrument of the worst in human nature, has already set in place those elements necessary for the end of our experiment in representative government.

I'm not that old, and I have kids. Other than that, WWS.

The one hope I do have is that the demographic wave that's been predicted to change the political landscape in the US will actually do so. I thought it was already happening in '08. Either it wasn't, or it's a fits-and-starts sort of thing.

the values of a drug dealer

This is the best summary of the values of this era, in this country, that I have seen.

Depressing as hell, but apt.

Wonkie, I don't have an argument with the values of (especially the libertarian branch of) the Republican Party today. In short, what Janie said.

But it may help to bear in mind that their base of support is based on fighting a losing rear-guard action against the modern world.

That is, their electoral strategy is based on exploiting nostalgia for the 1950s. (As with most nostalgias, it omits inconvenient-to-them bits like the tax rates.) As those who remember the 1950s pass from the scene, their base will increasingly erode. Not to zero (see the numbers who still are nostalgic for their myth of the Confederacy), but to the point where it is necessary to politicians to have a different base.

For an example of what will happen, see the difference in attitudes towards gay marriage between evangelicals under 30 and those above. It will take a while for those who are willing to leave past bigotry on that issue behind rise to leadership positions. But it will happen. And note that that's a very recent worldview shift; on other issues the process is actually further along, albeit going a bit more slowly.

WWS.

the thing I worry about regarding change via demographic shift are the folks who appear to be happy to burn the place down before they'll concede to that kind of normal, inevitable social change.

there are a lot of them.

Here's a small amusement, if only because it's hypocrisy working in a direction that many of you will favor:

Even Kobach himself, pressed by the Kansas City Star, said he won’t turn over Social Security information to his own commission.
Here's the guy who, as the leader of Trump's Voting Commission, driving the request for voter information. You gotta love it when he announces that he, in his capacity as Kansas' Secretary of State, will be among those refusing to comply.

I hope all the people who have expressed great fear and consternation over the potential for a federal gun registry are similarly perturbed over this actual voting commission.

Probably only worried if the voter information includes a flag for gun ownership....
(Idiots!)

This seems on point and relevant to the current discussion:

http://www.philly.com/philly/opinion/commentary/in-poland-trump-shows-ignorance-of-basic-u-s-values-20170706.html

(Trudy Rubin has her right-leaning moments, but she is not to be confused with Jennifer Rubin.)

This is really more relevant to a discussion (triggered by wj IIRC) about political parties from several threads down the list. Since that thread is fading, I'm putting it here. It's just what I thought was a pertinent, and interesting, comment over at Balloon-juice.

Where were we talking about immigrants, and their value to the US? russell I think it was said how important he felt that the back and forth exchange of culture etc between immigrants and the host country was, and how much he valued it.

This is an interesting New Yorker piece on a woman called Zainab Ahmad, a prosecutor for the The Eastern District of New York, who has prosecuted 13 terrorists from abroad, and never lost a case. She is joining Mueller's team, and sounds to me like she'll be a real asset. The following quotation is what made me think about our previous discussion:

But the Trump Administration seems less interested, so far, in parrying threats than in demonizing Muslims, particularly immigrants and refugees. Besides everything else, this is a strategic mistake. As Ahmad says, “America is the most successful country in the world at integrating immigrants, and that helps keep us safe. Immigrant communities in Europe are much more ghettoized, much less warmly accepted. We do have a problem with people trying to join isis, but the number of people going from Belgium dwarfs the number going from here, even in absolute terms, let alone relative to our populations.”


http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/05/15/taking-down-terrorists-in-court

Rightwing authoritarians need an external and an internal enemy. I dont think any Republican politician has seriously been committed to preventing terrorism. Too useful In fact, essential. IF there were no real terrorists, they'd have to make them up

Immigrants are important to all countries, not just the US. Now if various countries, including the US, would just stop creating refugee crises.

http://digbysblog.blogspot.com/2017/07/what-its-like-to-be-on-their-radar.html

The shooting was virtually directed from the White House:

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/kellyanne-conway-donald-trump-jr-boost-mike-cernovich

Cool, Poland AND Texas are seceding from the Union:

http://www.esquire.com/news-politics/politics/news/a56168/poland-confederate-flag-trump/

John Wilkeslaus Boothwalski

what the hell, I'll pile on.

Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right.

We have years of this ahead of us.

And these days, the crazy is no respecter of political affiliation.

The "crazy old dude who just doesn't give a shit anymore" contingent is just warming up. Go ahead, (R)'s, take their meds away and see what happens.

They sure look happy in their mug shots. Wow...

they grow those funny mushrooms down around tuscon...

Merry and Pippin hit the pipeweed a little too hard.

Is Tuscon near Tuscany?

Buttons, Tucson, buttons.

Chicken, Tuscan chicken

Mmmm, I was thinking funny mushrooms alla Toscana

nothing funny about mushrooms a la Toscana!!

"This is an interesting New Yorker piece on a woman called Zainab Ahmad, a prosecutor for the The Eastern District of New York, who has prosecuted 13 terrorists from abroad, and never lost a case."

She was an ultra-competent, formidable prosecutor, which is why she lost that job under the anti-American rubes now destroying America.

Wait until things hot up and watch trump and company malign her cultural and religious background and her gender via social media as he moves to fire the lot of Mueller's team.

I wouldn't doubt that ICE and Homeland Security will be sniffing around her family's immigration paperwork.

We're dealing with traitorous scum. Expect the worst and combat it with even worse.

This is a good find by our cleek:

http://ok-cleek.com/blogs/?p=26246

If Donald Johnson was here, I 'd ask him what he thinks of this:

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/why-trumps-un-ambassador-nikki-haley-is-dangerous

I find it highly peculiar that anyone believed that trump, first, knew anything abut foreign, diplomatic and military policy, and second, that he would get one look at the shiny armaments we over-fund and not get a stiffy just thinking about the megatonnage of the explosions he could order from the ala carte menu.

Conservatives are full of shit.

There are few things more mystifying than that some people take professional wrestling seriously.

From that American Conservative article:

Haley has been shooting from the lip since she assumed office and, it has become clear, much of what she says goes without any vetting by the Trump administration. It is never clear whether she is speaking for herself or for the White House.
It's not obvious, at least to me, how you can tell if anyone In this administration is "speaking for the White House". Or even, was doing so, before the latest 180 from there.

If Donald Johnson was here, I 'd ask him what he thinks of this

I started reading that article and saw that the author had voted for Trump. Donald voted for Clinton, although he campaigned for Trump throughout the election.

I'm sure he'd be pious, whatever he might say.

If Donald Trump really wants to drain the Washington swamp and reduce interference in other nations, he might well continue that program by firing Nikki Haley. He could then appoint someone as UN ambassador who actually believes that the United States has to deal with other countries respectfully, not by constant bullying and threats.

that's adorable. Mr Giraldi's eyes are still full of sparkles and moonbeams; his man-crush rages on.

one morning, soon hopefully, he'll wake up and realize that Trump is simply an empty-headed con-man who doesn't know or care enough about foreign policy to have actual principles. and then he'll realize that he's been conned. and that will sting a bit. but, be glad of it, for that sting will only be the remnants of ignorance leaving the mind.

then he'll realize that he's been conned.

he might realize it but he'll never cop to it

"although he campaigned for Trump throughout the election."

Kelly Ann Conway-level churlishness, sapient.

Donald Johnson did nothing of the sort. Come on.

But here's who to keep your aim on: ;)

https://www.balloon-juice.com/2017/07/08/saturday-morning-open-thread-rashamon-rash-o-liars/

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/confessions-of-a-former-republican/

http://www.esquire.com/news-politics/politics/news/a56180/voter-purge-team-bush-justice-department/

I can't think what lullaby I'm going to sing to myself after I deal with the republican mofos stealing the franchise.

Sleepless in America.

I need to go and see this:

http://www.atlasobscura.com/places/the-sailing-stones-of-racetrack-playa

Hobby Lobby may be funding ISIS:

http://washingtonmonthly.com/2017/07/07/hobby-lobby-meets-indiana-jones/

Worse, they are funding the republican party.

This is a great piece on Shakespeare's essential humanity, "If You Prick Us"

http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/07/10/shakespeares-cure-for-xenophobia

As we are surrounded by pricks.

Meanwhile, here people are openly referring to Angela Merkel as the Leader of the Free World (anachronistic as that description may be) and to the G19. May have been happening for a few months, but it still brings you up with a start.

And by people, I mean the respectable media.

I suspect that your idea of respectable media may be different than mine in that case. For it to be G19 it has to include Putin and May, maybe the G17? But then Saudi Arabia, oh, and China. Let's see, China gets to start worrying about climate change in 2030. So G15?

South Korea may still depend on the US a bit so G14?

You mean fair trade deals should exclude us? Every President in the last 25 years has whined about China dumping steel, but now we are being problematic.

F@ck the respectable press.


http://www.denverpost.com/2017/07/07/colorado-earth-flat-gravity-hoax/

via Balloon Juice

trump still needs a science advisor.

Marty, I feel your pain. Did you see that Ivanka was sitting in for Trump at one of the working sessions? One of the Russians tweeted a picture, which was quickly taken down, but can still be seen....

Did you see that Ivanka was sitting in for Trump at one of the working sessions?

i'm sure that's totally cool in a very specific way that would not apply at all if, say, Chelsea Clinton were to sit in while her mother was busy doing something else.

In all fairness, the G19 was said only half-seriously after Paris Accords stuff, but the Leader of the Free World thing was said seriously, albeit with wonder and a sense of "unbelievably, this is where we are".

She sat in for a few minutes when he had to step out. She didnt attend the meeting for him. The Polish first lady didnt refuse to shake his hand. Blah, blah.

Back to trying to find an actual report of what was accomplished. Not written by Merkel or Putin.

Marty, the issue is not how long she sat in (between Xi, May, Merkel) for, the issue is why was she sitting in at all? What is her expertise? What does she know about this issue? As cleek says, what would you have said if this had been Chelsea Clinton (although I think we can guess)?

The issue is she can tell the Presudent what was said while he was gone. As far as expertise, she at least as expert as he is, it's a world bank/financial conference, she may be more qualified than many of the people there. However, she didn't say anything, just listened until he returned.

What does Chelsea have to do with It? She may have sat in for her mother in some meetings depending on the topic, who knows? Podesta didn't like her level of participation in the Foundation.


"she at least as expert as he is."

Duly noted. She and my cat. I don't have a cat at the moment, but it could be any cat.

I good comeback to the Chelsea gambit, Marty, would have been to answer that SHE would have sat on/in Putin's lap.

I try to help.

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