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January 26, 2021

Comments

I have no doubt that there will be a return to "Executive orders are TYRANNY!1!!" in short order.

this is the current headline at Breitbart:

Emperor Biden: Joe Sets Record for Executive Orders in First Week

President Joe Biden has issued more executive orders in his first week in office — not yet complete, as of this writing — than any of his 45 predecessors.

(no link, you can figure it out if you really want)

Yup. As well as the "The deficit! O noes! (h/t cleek) Irresponsible financially illiterate Dems!"

As well as the "The deficit! O noes! (h/t cleek) Irresponsible financially illiterate Dems!"

Like this?

https://theweek.com/articles/962983/democrats-are-getting-chuck-grassleyed

A bipartisan group of 16 senators, eight Republicans and eight Democrats, pressed Biden adviser Brian Deese on a video call to slice down the size of the pandemic rescue package. They fretted that $1,400 checks aren't means-tested enough (somehow they never mention that they're already heavily means-tested), and worried that states and schools might be getting too much money. How "did the administration come up with $1.9 trillion dollars required?" wondered Susan Collins (R-Maine). Angus King (I-Maine.) echoed the complaint: "Part of what we’re asking for is more data — where did you get the number?" He went on to fret about the deficit: "Every dollar that we’re talking about here is being borrowed from our grandchildren. We have a responsibility to be stewards."

ROLEX!!!

tan suit is on deck.

also - FWIW I don't have a problem with people calling out the FBI when it colors outside the lines. I'm just not interested in "nullifying the election" crap.

If you want to see what "nullifying the election" looks like, look at Trump's actions, more or less daily, since November.

And I'm not interested in debating that crap either, just offering it as an actual example of attempted election nullification. In case anyone actually needs some clarity on what the freaking words mean.

I continue to see Biden as a stroke of luck. Whether you agree with him on policy or not.

Cometh the hour, etc.

in any case, let the great debates about watch brands and gym equipment proceed!!

"Every dollar that we’re talking about here is being borrowed from our grandchildren. We have a responsibility to be stewards."

Yeah. It's not like where the money is going and under what circumstances matters. Every dollar is just a dollar, like all the others, and there are no second-, third-, fourth-order (and so on, especially if we're talking about grandchildren) effects that depend on what actual resources are put into play and for what purposes.

I'm sure our grandchildren will appreciate it if we let this immediate crisis take its course and destroy lives, assets, and businesses for good. That'll help!

hsh -

I don't remember their voicing that pious concern any time between Jan 21 2017 and Jan 21 2021.

I certainly somehow missed their voicing that pious concern when they passed a $2T tax cut.

Wonder why.

"Strengthens Buy American rules by closing loopholes and reducing waivers granted on federal purchases of domestic goods"

This is better than Trump's trade war. But the government should be trying to get the biggest bang for the taxpayers' buck. Not favoring vendors just because they're domestic.

"Restores collective bargaining power and worker protections for federal workers, and lays the foundation for $15 minimum wage"

So, are the businesses that have survived the pandemic, but are hanging by their nails, being told that their expenses are going to be artificially raised?

"Directs the Department of Education and HHS to provide guidance for safely reopening and operating schools, childcare providers and institutions of higher education"

Just open the K-12 schools FCS! Keeping the schools closed is doing more harm than good.

"Rejoins the Paris climate accord, a process that will take 30 days"

Resume the climate change response theater.

"Cancels the Keystone XL pipeline and directs agencies to review and reverse more than 100 Trump actions on the environment"

Virtue signaling that "we really hate those bad old fossil fuels"?

Just open the K-12 schools FCS! Keeping the schools closed is doing more harm than good.

Get those teachers vaccinated, then sure.

Amazing what short memories some Senators have.
https://mobile.twitter.com/clairecmc/status/1353904001197207553

Zing!

But the government should be trying to get the biggest bang for the taxpayers' buck. Not favoring vendors just because they're domestic.

taxpayers having jobs seems like a bigger bang than taxpayers not having jobs.

Get those teachers vaccinated, then sure.

Some unions are holding out against teaching in person even after their members have been vaccinated.

Some unions are holding out against teaching in person even after their members have been vaccinated.

Which says nothing about the validity of wj's suggestion.

So, are the businesses that have survived the pandemic, but are hanging by their nails, being told that their expenses are going to be artificially raised?

Expenses are artificial. They are a human creation, not something coming from nature. Should struggling workers be told that their incomes will continue to be artificially suppressed? Or will businesses be told that their customers will artificially have more money to spend?

An interesting (to this non-lawyer) suggestion for the Senate impeachment trial.

Democrats should call Republicans’ bluff. Present a stipulation as to the facts supported by publicly available evidence
...
To make this user-friendly, present the stipulation in the form of a five-to-six-minute video, easily accessible for ordinary voters.
...
Since these facts are not in doubt, call for a unanimous vote putting the Senate on record as to the evidence.
Stipulations are not particularly unusual in trials. And it would force Republican Senators to go on record about what did, in fact, happen. And go on record for or against that specific action.

Some unions are holding out against teaching in person even after their members have been vaccinated.

Yes. The teacher's family may not be vaccinated. The teacher's household may include at-risk people.

The students may not be vaccinated. The students' households may include at-risk people.

Teacher unions are very aware that we are not just bargaining for our own safety. Our teaching conditions are also the safety conditions for everyone in our bubbles.

University level risks are a bit greater than in K-12.

Some K-12 unions are relenting a bit as they see their market share shrinking.

"Every dollar that we’re talking about here is being borrowed from our grandchildren."

This is economic illiteracy. These ignorant f*cks are in charge of making public policy? I shudder at the thought.

Look (to coin a phrase), for every grandchild paying off these bonds there are other grandchilds who are getting the dough, and heaven portend, that same granchild paying off those treasuries may also be a holder of those instruments.

Susan Collins and Angus King are idiots.

And what hsh said.

further....I sure wish somebody would loan me a couple billion dollars at negative interest rates to be paid off over 30 years.

JFC...what idiots.

...to clarify negative real interest rates.

Every dollar that we’re talking about here is being borrowed from our grandchildren.

There's always the option of paying for it now. It's called 'revenue', most likely in the form of 'taxes'.

But the government should be trying to get the biggest bang for the taxpayers' buck.

cleek beat me to it, but 'bang for the buck' really ought to include some consideration of the total effect of the money being spent.

Schools are relatively low-risk if appropriate precautions are taken.

just, ya know, FYI:

Congressional Republicans are so afraid of the GOP cult that they're willing to ignore the threat the cult made on their own lives if it means avoid angering the cult any further.

Let's hope that vaccine production expands significantly without new obstacles or setbacks or else it will be the end of the school year before all the teachers can be vaccinated in the first place.

That's the first systempunkt that could render the others moot.

Teachers need to be vaccinated, and teachers' unions are fully justified in insisting that teachers (and other school workers) be allowed to stay home (teaching online or whatever) until that happens. After that happens? No - we can't wait until every person's bubble is vaccinated.

Susan Collins not a week ago guessed her conservative constituency coming to disembowel and hang her were swarthy Muslim terrorists.

She was the only person, after McTX, to get the news regarding who was trying to kill who.

"Some K-12 unions are relenting a bit as they see their market share shrinking."

Funny thing about this midsummer's nights dream called America that viral loads and market share run inversely.

What fucking dogshit.

After that happens?

Important to be clear about what 'that' means. It could mean
-a vaccine is created
-a vaccine is distributed (to whom though)
-the ability to get vaccinated is organized
-the vaccination is in a person's arms
-sufficient vaccinations are in everyone's arms

I'm not precisely sure which one you mean, but I assign enough good faith to you to imagine that we could come to a reasonable understanding of 'that'. With others, not so much.

But that 'that' is going to be imperfect and if someone stands on making the perfect the enemy of the good, it won't be pretty.

It's unfortunate, if schools and teachers were better funded and had more autonomy, this might be a way to blend models of in person and online learning. A proportion of the teachers teaching online, students using the school to make up for IT infrastructure that they may lack at home (and providing working parents a place to take care of their kids), a system for making it possible for kids in special circumstances (becoming part of a cluster for example, or immuno compromised) to move to online from in-person and back. Unfortunately, most conceptions of curricula and teaching (as well as the idea that education is licensing) are too rigid to manage that.

Teachers need to be vaccinated, and teachers' unions are fully justified in insisting that teachers (and other school workers) be allowed to stay home (teaching online or whatever) until that happens. After that happens? No - we can't wait until every person's bubble is vaccinated.

I'm willing to force that discussion because it is a discussion worth having to force a measure of realism into the otherwise faith-based arguments about "opening the economy." Sure, mandate that teachers return, but you don't get to hide the details of what you are asking of them and that record of what is being asked should become part of the context for discussions of what fair compensation looks like for an essential worker.

I’m still trying to get my head around ‘schoolteachers’ and ‘market share’.

I’m still trying to get my head around ‘schoolteachers’ and ‘market share’.

IKR? (Dare I say “LOL”? Or even WTF?”)

Teachers and minimum wage workers should say adios to kissing our market enslaving butts and put a little sugar on sure thing American bullshit, organic, non-artificial capitalism, where up is up, down is up, and shut up.

https://bigcharts.marketwatch.com/quickchart/quickchart.asp?symb=GME&insttype=Stock

Perhaps I should have put "market share" in quotes. But in some school districts where enrollment in the public schools is down as much as 5% or more, unions are more amendable to getting back to in-person teaching.

"I’m still trying to get my head around ‘schoolteachers’ and ‘market share’."

When libertarians skip class, it's a market mechanism.

I'm willing to force that discussion because it is a discussion worth having to force a measure of realism into the otherwise faith-based arguments about "opening the economy."

I'm all in on that, too. But I fear you will get just about as far as we do on that other age old question about "balanced budgets" and "lower taxes".

"Foresooth, sir, pray tell us which government programs are to be cut, and by how much to bring about this budget balance after we cut taxes?"

"Eliminate fraud, waste, and abuse" is the standard reply.

Other than that-crickets.

I'm willing to force that discussion because it is a discussion worth having to force a measure of realism into the otherwise faith-based arguments about "opening the economy."

Not sure what discussion we're having about faith-based arguments. There's a horrible disease out there. It's causing many, many people to die. It's also causing huge economic upheaval and depravation. I'd be cool with taxing billionaires to help fix it, and I hope that happens. In the meantime, kids need to learn stuff, and they need to get away from their beloved nuclear families, some of whom aren't doing so well being all together all of the time.

The people who are suffering aren't the evil perpetrators.

deprivation

Anyway, let's actually have the discussion about who is losing what.

But in some school districts where enrollment in the public schools is down as much as 5% or more, unions are more amendable to getting back to in-person teaching.

Care to put some meat on that bone with a link, because (as someone who has sat in on a lot of COVID effects bargaining sessions) that sounds to me like some typical libertarian vanity framing.

Not sure what discussion we're having about faith-based arguments.

I'm talking about the people whose entire arguments start from the assumption that schools must reopen at whatever cost because that will save the economy. It's not an argument that you have been making, but it is the argument being made by all of the people showing up to protest public mask mandates.

And also, let's circle back to...

"Teachers need to be vaccinated, and teachers' unions are fully justified in insisting that teachers (and other school workers) be allowed to stay home (teaching online or whatever) until that happens. After that happens? No - we can't wait until every person's bubble is vaccinated."

...next time there is a discussion here about why it might be that the Democratic Part is losing the support of their traditional labor contingent.

...and teachers, more than most others, are fully aware of the problems with unmonitored abuse. That is absolutely part of the unions' considerations when they go over these issues. Teacher's unions, as I have said before, have no equivalent of the "Thin Blue Line" mentality.

Signed - a "responsible reporter"

...next time there is a discussion here about why it might be that the Democratic Part is losing the support of their traditional labor contingent.

It's actually why people like me, who should be pro-labor unions, sometimes have misgivings. I am fully on board with paying teachers well. I vote for people who support that in my jurisdiction.

I have a friend with liver cancer here in VA who would love to have a vaccination, but other people come first. That's fine - he's patient, and can remain on lockdown (possibly for his remaining days). It's a privilege to be first in line for a vaccine. That's a good thing for teachers, if that's what's on offer, right?

Remember, a 5% decline in enrollment in "gummint" schools to a libertarian/ conservative is a disappointing milestone in their desires to disappear the "public" in schooling and geld public sector unions.

It's like the great white shark in "Jaws" showing up at a city council meeting on "Amity Island" and concern trolling the shut-down of beaches because of blood in the water.

Remember, a 5% decline in enrollment in "gummint" schools to a libertarian/ conservative is a disappointing milestone in their desires to disappear the "public" in schooling and geld public sector unions.

There certainly are those people, but let's talk about what is being asked here of people who support public education, and hoping that their kids can return to school - especially the many, many people who rely on their kids going to school to be able to do their own sucky jobs.

Both my wife and I teach at a university and both of us would like to have a vaccine sooner, rather than later. But we are also concerned about people who are more at risk than we are, like your friend, and are willing to continue remote teaching despite it being a greater burden on us than being in the classroom and not as effective for our students because it is effective enough and it is temporary.

I'm not on board for any discussion of how to get the economy open again that does not address fair compensation for essential workers. This goes double for me having a front row seat observing all of the disaster capitalism that schools and institutions are engaging in trying to leverage people's desperation into long-term concessions over teaching conditions.

This is about more than just going back to the classroom.

The moment of crisis is always the moment when concession is demanded of labor, but no concessions are reciprocally made. And the ground that is conceded is never regained.

I'm not on board for any discussion of how to get the economy open again that does not address fair compensation for essential workers.

But you're not even talking about what that is. I'm hugely in favor of taking money from billionaires to pay essential workers. That's great. That's not going to get done in the short term - even if we hold poor, needy, desperate in other ways, good people hostage for demands that you aren't even articulating.

What you did articulate, nous, is that every teacher and his/her bubble needs to be safe before people go back to work. Or did I misunderstand?

The moment of crisis is always the moment when concession is demanded of labor, but no concessions are reciprocally made.

This may be true in the particular, but not in the general crisis that is happening now.

That's not going to get done in the short term - even if we hold poor, needy, desperate in other ways, good people hostage for demands that you aren't even articulating.

Says the person who seems not to have any experience with any COVID related bargaining between management and teachers unions, and whose public misgivings erode union leverage.

I'm already up to my eyeballs in both full-time remote teaching and in unpaid union work trying to keep management from hollowing out student educations and turning teachers into gig workers in the name of crisis. I don't have the bandwidth to do union outreach for sympathetic skeptics who want to be wooed.

I'm already up to my eyeballs in both full-time remote teaching and in unpaid union work

In other words, you have a job? Good on you!

I don't have the bandwidth to do union outreach for sympathetic skeptics who want to be wooed.

I don't "want to be wooed". You're on a discussion forum where you take a position that all your "bubble" needs a vaccine before you show at work. I disagree.

And with that, the conversation has once again become the typical sapient scolding.

Your petty bullshit shade has shown me the error of my ways. I stand abashed and contrite.

Truly, I was unaware of these things.

If only my moral horse were so high.

Maybe, when nous is less swamped, we could have a discussion on the relative merits of unions and civil service protections. Because, to my mind, there are strong arguments for each. But no justification for having both simultaneously.

typical sapient scolding.

I am not scolding at all. You were scolding me with this:

Says the person who seems not to have any experience with any COVID related bargaining between management and teachers unions, and whose public misgivings erode union leverage.

As if we're a discussion forum of union reps. It's sad that unions lost their mojo (circa 1975 or so) because I believe in their usefulness. But this discussion is an argument for how it happened, and why it continues.

Care to put some meat on that bone with a link,

I normally don't make an assertion unless I can back it up if asked. I thought I remembered seeing some examples of unions in school districts that had seen big drops in enrollments being more favorable to returning to in-person teaching. But I can't find any examples.


The moment of crisis is always the moment when concession is demanded of labor, but no concessions are reciprocally made.

This can work both ways. Some unions are making non-pandemic related concessions from school districts and states a requirement to return to in-person teaching.

But in some school districts where enrollment in the public schools is down as much as 5% or more, unions are more amendable to getting back to in-person teaching.

Every teacher I know wants to get back in the classroom. Union, non-union, whatever. They are teaching remotely, but they’d rather be in class.

They also don’t want to die, nor do they want to expose kids or people ‘in their bubble’ to the virus.

This is a crappy situation, but other than situations where it is impossible to do your job without being physically present, people should not be required to go to work if it isn’t safe for them or their families for them to do so.

Right? Isn’t that basic common sense?

unions lost their mojo (circa 1975 or so) because I believe in their usefulness. But this discussion is an argument for how it happened, and why it continues.

As Daffy Duck said to Bugs Bunny 'ahh, pronoun problems'
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LyPFQKpRnd0

Sure, russell. But what does that actually mean?

They also don’t want to die, nor do they want to expose kids or people ‘in their bubble’ to the virus.

Obviously. To me, that means they get a vaccine. If it's questionable whether even having a vaccine means that they're endangering "their bubble", I'm not sure that means they should still get paid for whatever they decide (maybe with exceptions - whatever).

people should not be required to go to work if it isn’t safe for them or their families for them to do so.

Nobody is required to go to work. We aren't slaves. If people are prioritized for getting vaccinated so that they can work, and they do get vaccinated, they really should go to work, or quit.

As Daffy Duck said to Bugs Bunny 'ahh, pronoun problems'

Mea culpa!

they really should go to work, or quit.

A lot of people have quit. Teachers, also medical professionals. Probably some other fields.

Some can’t, because even though they aren’t slaves, they may not have a lot of choice for other reasons. Or, they may be dedicated to what they do.

But a lot have quit, and more will do so before all this is over.

And we’ll see how that works out.

A lot of people have quit.

Are you talking about people who have been offered vaccines, or have been vaccinated? Because that's who I was talking about.

And we’ll see how that works out.

It will work out badly if good teachers quit. Or maybe a lot of folks who have wanted coveted teaching jobs will be able to teach.

It will work out.

Sapient's reasoning is described in the lgm post
https://www.lawyersgunsmoneyblog.com/2021/01/this-day-in-labor-history-january-25-1915

American elites, going back to before the Civil War, were deeply committed to the idea of liberty of contract. At its essence, this meant that any two people who made an agreement, let’s say for a job, entered into the agreement as autonomous agents who made a legally binding agreement. It did not take long for contract doctrine to be perverted by the nation’s industrial elite in order to repress the rights of workers. The idea that an impoverished worker was on the same legal and moral level as J.P. Morgan is an absolutely absurdity, a mockery of any decent legal standard. But this lasted for many decades. So if an employer wanted to force a worker to sign a yellow-dog contract so that they could not join a union, followers of liberty of contract doctrine would state that said worker could either agree to the conditions or quit. Quit to what was not a question they were concerned with. Poverty, despondence, suicide–these were not worthy of the attention of these elites.

I'm very familiar with the Lochner line of cases that Erik describes. I am totally in favor of collective bargaining and regulatory restrictions on oppressive labor practices.

If I were in the bargaining room, I would say that a prioritized vaccination would be a benefit.

But you can continue to call me names, or nitpick my grammar or whatever. Anything to avoid the issue of determining what is actually fair.

By the way, I love reading LGM, and enjoy Erik Loomis. But he's not a lawyer, and (IMO) he's a sketchy historian. I bought one of his books, which I read (sort of skimmed it). His cranky personality is sometimes adorable, and sometimes sickening. He's hugely judgmental of parents (for somebody who isn't a parent), and he hates certain foods. So he's fun to read and be annoyed by, and sometimes he's right.

I have no problem with his criticism of the Supreme Court's gilded age view of the "right to work or quit". There is some bargaining to be had though, collectively.

Does the vaccine prevent you from transmitting the disease?

To my knowledge, we don’t know the answer to that at this point. Absent that information, it seems irresponsible to require people to be in be in situations where they are in close proximity to other people in an enclosed space. vaccinated or not.

Right?

We’ll all be glad when this is all over. All of us. But it’s not over yet.

It will work out.

Everything always does, one way or other.

It seems obvious that "right to work or quit" is only sensible in an environment where quitting doesn't mean you (and your family) then starve, or are out living on the street, etc. Set up a Guaranteed Annual Income (for those not blessed with lifetime Supreme Court tenure), and it's all good. Until or unless that happens, not so much.

P.S. Perhaps my math is off. But it seems to me that the national economy, in total, can afford something like that. Administering it might be challenging. It might have undesirable side effects. But just claiming we can't afford it is ridiculous.

Absent that information, it seems irresponsible to require people to be in be in situations where they are in close proximity to other people in an enclosed space.

I disagree. At a certain point, there is a risk of being exposed to disease - we all have faced it our entire lives. I'm not opposed to mask mandates, or any other protocols, but we can't totally eliminate risk.

I would not oppose a CDC mandate to do whatever, and if a three month lockdown is mandated, I'll support it. I'm not opposed to safety. But teachers get vaccines, and don't want to go to low risk school situations? Nope. Data doesn't support it, and I'm all about science.

But just claiming we can't afford it is ridiculous.

Like a broken record I will say: the after-tax household income numbers I got from the CBO some years ago, covering the years from 1979 through 2005, showed (from memory; not digging right now) that you could ask the wealthiest 11,000 housholds (the top 1% of 1%), which had an average annual after-tax income of $24,000,000, to give half of that (and have to struggle by on a mere million a month) to the lowest quintile (25 million households) -- and that would raise the latter's after-tax income by more than a third, or > $5,000 a year per household.

I don't have more recent numbers. But from 1979 through 2005, that gap had gotten steadily worse. Lord knows what it is now.

And that's to say nothing of wealth, only income.

So it bears repeating: Just claiming we can't afford it is ridiculous.

Also, how long are we all supposed to stay home, and where are we going to get something to eat?

People are taking risks. What are y'all paying for groceries? Are you tipping your checkout person? Or how are you doing this?

wj and JanieM were talking about a UBI?

Erik has been against that, by the way, although maybe there was a recent post where he relented. I have (during the past 10 years) been for it.

Just saying: we all need to be careful who we're adulating or hating!

I disagree

Then you go do it.

Then you go do it.

Will do. Just as soon as I am vaccinated, just after my cancer-ridden friends, and 95-year-old relative!

Consider your comment bookmarked.

Consider your comment bookmarked.

Absolutely. I'm out there already doing volunteer work with a mask. For whatever reason, it's not a horrible idea to go into a classroom, having been vaccinated, with a mask on, teaching kids, where there's already a hugely low risk of infection.

Not sure what everyone is on about.

By the way, a friend of mine (a very carful person) recently had a mild stroke, was taken to the hospital where she spent a week or two, then went to rehab for a week, then was sent home. Then she felt bad and discovered she had been sent home with Covid. Her husband is vulnerable for other reasons.

Yeah, she was super careful. Let's all bookmark each other and blame each other for getting Covid if it happens.

careful. Got it lj.

we all need to be careful who we're adulating or hating!

There you go with that "we" again. I am not part of the "we" you're always giving advice to, and I don't need your advice about how to form my opinions of Erik Loomis or anyone else. More specifically, I don't give a flying banana what Erik Loomis thinks about the idea of a UBI, nor, for that matter, did I actually write anything about the UBI. I was simply responding to wj's comment about the math of what we could afford.

"We all need to be careful" ... about going off the rails. Or just going off, period.

I am not part of the "we" you're always giving advice to, and I don't need your advice about how to form my opinions of Erik Loomis or anyone else.

Feel free to abstain.

Oh, excuse me. If I may, will you please feel free? to maybe abstain?

Congrats sapient, you've earned a 1 week vacation from the blog. Hope you can get lots of stuff done!

So, um, anyone heard any good jokes lately?

my 5-year old niece's favorite joke right now is:

What do you call a fake noodle?
.
.
.
.
An im-pasta!

Kids that age don't quite realize that you can't tell the same people the same joke over and over again. Well ... you can, I guess. It just doesn't have the same effect.

Dad jokes also, too.
Maybe that's where the kids learn the technique from.

Unless I've lost my ability calibrate from not being around little kids very much these days, "impostor" is a pretty good vocabulary word for a five-year-old.

"Someone tell a joke...".

Kids that age don't quite realize that you can't tell the same people the same joke over and over again.

...unless the target suffers from certain types of dementia.

OK, that was just cruel.

"impostor" is a pretty good vocabulary word for a five-year-old.

oh, she's pretty bright. asked for (and got) a microscope for xmas.

Unless I've lost my ability calibrate from not being around little kids very much these days, "impostor" is a pretty good vocabulary word for a five-year-old.

I blame Among Us. I don't know if five-year-olds play it, but they at least talk to people who do (or watch their youtube videos).

I know my 8-year-old has been playing it since before he turned 8, and my older kids, up to 17 years old, play it.

My sense is that a major factor in how fast kids vocabularies grow is how adults talk to and around them.

The parents of my contemporaries growing up appeared to rein themselves in. Perhaps (assuming it was conscious) to make it easier for the children to understand.

My parents never did. They talked to us just like they talked to each other, and both were college educated and avid readers. If we didn't know what something meant, we asked. Perhaps the most common expression in the house was "Look it up!" Certainly the dictionaries got heavy use.

As a result, my siblings and I talked the same way. I was in maybe 3rd grade when Mom heard one of my classmates identify me to another as "The kid who uses the big words."

So if a child uses an unusually sophisticated word, credit the parents.

"anyone heard any good jokes lately?"

"A Republic , if you can keep it."

-Marjorie Taylor Franklin-

Rubio cracks up, as Lauren Boebert idly nibbles on/fellates the barrel of her automatic weapon:

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

An asteroid, the Covid-19 virus, Donald Trump, and Lindsay Graham walk into the Shooters Bar in Rifle, Colorado and belly up to the bar.

Boebert slaps a bar towel down and sez "Whaddayu boys having?"

They answer in yodeling unison block harmonies:

"We'll have what Vlad's having."

https://www.cnbc.com/2021/01/27/russias-putin-warns-of-a-fight-of-all-against-all-at-wef.html

Boebert: "Last call, it'll be."

They've just started to kill us.


More free NYT content via Yahoo:

https://www.yahoo.com/news/navy-seal-part-angry-mob-132532227.html

Newbold’s worldview is plain from his Facebook account. In a combative video laden with expletives that he posted a week before the riot, he repeated debunked but widely circulated claims about the election, saying that “it is absolutely unbelievable, the mountains of evidence of election fraud and voter fraud and machines and people who voted, dead people who voted.” When commenters challenged him, he responded with expletives and rejoinders like “Yeah keep laughing, you’re going to be laughing when you’re stomped down.”

(...)

He said he believed that unnamed elites had quietly pulled off a coup by manipulating election software and warned that the country was still on the precipice of war.

(...)

Last week when discussing his beliefs, Newbold dismissed the dozens of court decisions rejecting challenges to the election results, and shrugged off the logistical obstacles to rigging an election conducted by independent officials in more than 3,000 counties. Without citing evidence, he suggested it was naive to assume the results had not been rigged.

I selected these excerpts specifically because they describe almost exactly the things I've seen my own friends write and the back-and-forth with people trying to talk them out of their delusions. I guess they all got the same memo.

The rest about the guy's background and prior experiences with disinformation and conspiracy theories is more generally interesting. Just not as striking to me personally.

This
https://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap210127.html
is just way cool.

the internet is the perfect environment in which to nurture the delusions of the conspiracy-minded.

From JDT's CNBC link above.

He [Putin] said the crisis had increased social stratification, populism, right- and left-wing radicalism, adding that domestic political processes were becoming more violent.
And Putin has done such a great job of reducing inequality in Russia** that he obviously cares about the subject. /sarcasm

** See Navalny's video, which is currently making waves there: https://youtu.be/mxiRAN61n2c

This ... is just way cool.

yup.

Jen Rubin has an interesting take on yesterday's otherwise dispiriting vote in the Senate https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/01/27/mcconnell-is-not-going-save-gop-itself/

Conviction is based on two-thirds of the senators present. In protest for the “unconstitutional” trial, a pack of MAGA Republicans could decline to show up, leaving their colleagues to do the heavy lifting in disqualifying Trump from future office. That would be cowardly, weaselly and irresponsible, you say? That is precisely why you should not rule it out. [Emphasis added]
Yeah, I know, grasping at straws. But if straws are all that's available....

i'm pretty sure all those treasonous cowards will be there to show their asses to the GOP base, as is required.

https://www.cnn.com/2021/01/26/politics/marjorie-taylor-greene-democrats-violence/index.html

Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene repeatedly indicated support for executing prominent Democratic politicians in 2018 and 2019 before being elected to Congress, a CNN KFile review of hundreds of posts and comments from Greene's Facebook page shows.

Greene, who represents Georgia's 14th Congressional District, frequently posted far-right extremist and debunked conspiracy theories on her page, including the baseless QAnon conspiracy which casts former President Donald Trump in an imagined battle against a sinister cabal of Democrats and celebrities who abuse children.

In one post, from January 2019, Greene liked a comment that said "a bullet to the head would be quicker" to remove House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. In other posts, Greene liked comments about executing FBI agents who, in her eyes, were part of the "deep state" working against Trump.

Ultimately, it's all someone else's fault.

"Over the years, I've had teams of people manage my pages. Many posts have been liked. Many posts have been shared. Some did not represent my views. Especially the ones that CNN is about to spread across the internet," she wrote.

(...)

Though her tenure in Congress has only lasted a few weeks, Greene is already facing calls to leave the House for her role in fanning the flames of the Capitol insurrection earlier this month after she objected to the election certification process and falsely insisted that Trump would remain president.

After Democratic Rep. Jimmy Gomez called on Greene to be expelled from the House for her role in the insurrection, Greene condemned the violence at the Capitol and falsely accused "Antifa/BLM terrorism" and Democratic politicians of stoking the insurrection.

"I fully condemn ALL violence. The Antifa/BLM terrorism funded on ActBlue rests with Democrat accomplices like @CoriBush @Ilhan @KamalaHarris @AOC @timkaine & many more... Those who stoke insurrection & spread conspiracies have blood on their hands. They must be expelled," she tweeted.

They made her do it.

man, the party of personal responsibility sure ain't what it used to (claim to) be

Tim Kaine? You can't be serious!

man, the party of personal responsibility sure ain't what it used to (claim to) be

And the ones who are seem all the more special as a result.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/adam-kinzinger-republican-impeach-trump-capitol/2021/01/26/c544cc1e-55fa-11eb-a08b-f1381ef3d207_story.html

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