« Picking up and going | Main | “Who’s for more sprouts?”: thoughts on intelligence »

June 09, 2023


I don’t know who this hairshirthedonist is, but I’ve never seen such talent in a photographer!

What was particularly impressive is how he got virtually identical location shots. It really makes the differences stand out. For me what really resonated is how the big dome on the right was obscured, even though it was obviously quite close relative to the skyline.

The unauthorized importation of smoke. Solar panels hardest hit.

The unauthorized importation of smoke.

Obviously we need a beautiful wall on the northern border, too. A very, very tall wall.

And if it is high enough, it will also prevent Chinese balloons from entering US airspace from the north.
Now, where are the plans for a wall high enough to also stop spy satellites (of course with automatic gates for the US ones)?

Damn that global warming, or could build THE WALL out of solid ice.

Get the Canadians to pay for it also, too, because they'd want it to keep the wildlings out.

Pykrete walls! ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pykrete )
Also a way to store huge amounts of carbon. Large forests will have to get logged for the walls and the logged areas can get quickly reforested.
Let's say the wall is 5000 miles long, 10 miles high and half a mile thick with a pulp content of 15%. That would be about 15000 km³ of wood pulp or 7.5E12 metric tons, the equivalent of 14000 Gt of CO2.

In 2021 the worlwide CO2 emissions were about 37 Gt, so the pykrete wall between the US and Canade would make up for almost 400 years of CO2 emissions at current levels.

It's not like this would be unusual for any of the cities in the West. Low visibility, smells bad, fine particulate health risk. But heck, no ash fall and it won't last too long. Try stepping out on the deck in the morning and discovering ash from the fire 20 miles away on things. The summer of 1988, when a third of Yellowstone burned, Denver smelled like smoke and ash continuously for at least a couple of months.

I'm sure you all know that BoJo stood down as an MP in advance of the report into Partygate being published, issuing a statement which went the full Trump ("witch hunt", "kangaroo court" etc).

Also, a quick note for the commentariat about ObWi past favourite, the moronic Nadine Dorries. I don't know how much coverage you've had, but she immediately stood down when she discovered that, despite BoJo nominating her for a peerage in his resignation honours list, she has not been awarded it. Nobody is certain yet exactly why she was denied it (although some of us can guess), but she immediately acted in pique, and triggered another by-election. And so did one more BoJo crony. This leaves the Tories facing the possible loss of three seats, and it's clearly done precisely to spite the government and the current PM. What a shower of petty inadequates the BoJo cabal are. One can only hope that Labour manages to capitalise properly on all this.

This is from an excellent piece on the departing BoJo, by Andrew Rawnsley, the Observer's Chief Political Commentator:

There is no martyr to see here. There is a man who serially debased the high office that he was never fit to hold. There is a man who turned government into a carnival of clowning, chaos and chicanery. There is a man who presided over an appalling regime of lockdown-busting and law-breaking in Downing Street which triggered entirely justified public outrage and was poison for the people’s faith in government.

The whole thing is well worth reading:


This leaves the Tories facing the possible loss of three seats

The Parliament, not to mention the Tories, are well rid of them. If the Conservatives can elect a replacement, fine. If not, it's time to let someone else try running the country.

As for BoJo, the very best that can be said of him is that he's not as dumb as Trump -- a low bar, it's true. But otherwise, they seem so very similar.

Of the three seats whose MPs have resigned, one (BoJo's) is a very likely Labour win in a by-election, one (NaDo's) is a likely LibDem win, and the third the Tories can probably hold.

BoJo is much more charming than Trump, as well as much more intelligent. They have in common profound selfishness and a total disregard for the truth.

Pro Bono is right in his second para, I am sorry to say. Although BoJo's original charm (he was, undeniably, very funny), which worked on most of the country, seems to have largely worn off. And the reason I am sorry to endorse BoJo's far superior intelligence, is that in my view it makes his character and behaviour even more reprehensible than that of Trump. He had an excellent education, and although there was much wrong with his family (particularly his father, who I am glad to say also missed out on a knighthood in BoJo's resignation honours) I believe he would have had some decent values and standards modelled in his youth, unlike Trump who was brought up by a scoundrel and further schooled by an even bigger scoundrel (Roy Cohn).

This is not to excuse Trump in the least, of course, but in my eyes it further damns BoJo. We can only hope (and it seems likely) that Partygate has so damaged his reputation with the electorate (who had to let their relatives die alone in hospital of Covid, while BoJo and his people partied in number 10) that he cannot make a comeback. He has damaged this country in ways that we will no doubt see unfolding in the years to come.

He had an excellent education, and ... I believe he would have had some decent values and standards modelled in his youth

I think you might be a bit naive regarding the values and standards taught to upper(-middle)-class boys at Eton and Oxford (at least back then). Indeed, the argument has been made, that the products of such an education have had a hand in ruining the UK, not despite but because of saidd education e.g. here:


or here with Q&A with the author:


I think you might be a bit naive regarding the values and standards taught to upper(-middle)-class boys at Eton and Oxford (at least back then).

novakant, as some here might have gathered over the years, I had an almost identical schooling to BoJo, although after seven years of boarding school I opted not to undergo the extra semester then necessary to try for admission to Oxbridge, went to a modern university with certain radical associations, and dropped out after three months in general disgust with institutionalisation and a burning desire to start living a life.

I was a girl, of course, so some of the physical brutality might have been absent (I'm not sure how bad Eton was at that stage, but since BoJo is 10 years younger than me I think by then the worst was over) but I went at the same age as BoJo (11 not 8, or 13 to Eton), and also, like BoJo, had considerably more classics education than most there. And it is because of this last point that I know perfectly well at least some of what he was taught, read much of what he read, and understand what values and attitudes it instilled (or tried to instil), for better or worse.

I suffered badly emotionally. My parents lived abroad and I came from an atypically loving and demonstrative family compared to many of my fellows, so was fiercely homesick in a way many of my fellows were not. I mention this to show that I, too, may have been emotionally damaged in the way so often ascribed to public school boys.

I came from an anti-racist, socially liberal family, of course, so that is a great difference, but although school did not interrogate e.g. colonialism, or the received version of British history in general, it was already unthinkable for example to approve of or display colour prejudice.

All public school (as private boarding schools were and are called) pupils had no doubt a sense of class superiority, although this was actively discouraged officially, but I doubt many had it as much as Etonians. However, the old Etonian I knew best (about 10 years older than I) was a Utopian Marxist who later went off to build houses with and for the Sandinistas. Eton, for all its faults, provided (and still provides) an excellent education, and the means to question if the instinct to do so was there.

So I stand by my original comment, and believe I have plentiful knowledge and experience to do so. BoJo's lying, racism and selfishness are not particularly attributable to his education, and if he had had the instinct for decency it would have found plenty to feed it.

I should also have added that my experience of people who were sent away at 8 (or even 6!) is radically different. They are indeed much, much more damaged, and perhaps their essential inner character is deformed by it in a way that mine (and I'm guessing BoJo's) was not.

OMG, it's more "woke military" to protest against:
What the first net-zero military base could mean for the Pentagon’s future

It's a test bed, among other things, as the military moves towards reducing its dependence on fossil fuels. Which, be it noted, are subject to supply disruptions on the battlefield. (As we saw in parts of last spring's Russian invasion of Ukraine.)

But in a world where the state which produces the most wind power in the country (Texas) is passing bills in support of fossil fuel power production, this looks like a prime candidate for the next anti-woke crusade. Assuming the Luddites are aware of reality enough to notice.

They're making Tilting At Windmills great again!

And a return to the OP, with a question to HSH: get a photo of the smoke from the I-95 fire?

the next anti-woke crusade

I think the anti-woke crusaders (in whatever form over the years) need human beings to hate. Net-zero energy plans are not human, so do not make as juicy a target.

BoJo's lying, racism and selfishness are not particularly attributable to his education

Well, this former Eton headmaster seems to have a different view - anyway, it's quite funny:

Perhaps its [Eton's] most important mission will be to ensure that its pupils are saved from the sense of privilege, entitlement and omniscience that can produce alumni such as Boris Johnson, Jacob Rees-Mogg, Kwasi Kwarteng and Ben Elliot and thereby damage a country’s very fabric. Sadly, I failed in that purpose.


I think the anti-woke crusaders (in whatever form over the years) need human beings to hate. Net-zero energy plans are not human, so do not make as juicy a target.

Considering some of the remarks about the woke military from various prominent RWNJs, I'm not so sure.

But there's always the opportunity to go after whoever thought up a net zero base, or after whoever is commanding it now. Blame them for any imaginary deficiencies in the military. Presto! A human being to hate.

italics off

OK, if anyone knows how to do this, please help, thanks

(I used the "em" tag)

Mission accomplished -- wj
FYI, you got the first / outside the brackets

And a return to the OP, with a question to HSH: get a photo of the smoke from the I-95 fire?

I did not. It happened over the weekend, so I wasn't on the waterfront (with Marlon Brando). Also, too, it was quite a bit north of my workplace. Even if it was visible, it would have been an unimpressive photo (taken with a phone).

The GOP already pledges to rename Fort Liberty back to the confederate general it used to be named after.
The military going green beyond the uniform (will that become a target sooner or later with calls for red-white-blue field uniforms?) is a natural target and will be accused of being a stealth plan to undermine the fighting power.
I would not be surprised at all, if there came calls sooner or later to return to coal for powering military vehicles with tar sand oil offered as a compromise.

I willingly concede sense of privilege and entitlement! And if anybody is interested in what looks like a truly devastating biography of BoJo, also by a public school headmaster (admittedly Wellington, not Eton, but still), I think I may have posted some quotes from it a few days ago. But just in case not:

The distinguished historian and headteacher discusses his latest book about a contemporary prime minister, a devastating – and dispiriting – account of Johnson’s chaotic reign

Sir Anthony Seldon, the famous headteacher, has been writing book-length report cards on British prime ministers for 40 years. The latest, on Boris Johnson, based on the accounts of more than 200 people who witnessed his catastrophic, clown-car time in office first-hand, is a test not only of Seldon’s method, but also his tone. In previous volumes the author has assumed a base level of gravitas in his subjects, and of structure in their government. Though he employs the same quasi-legal model for his inquiry here, gathering careful evidence, weighing judgments, the story he pieces together is often one of venal mayhem; it frequently reads like a considered constitutional appraisal of rats in a sack.

There is a telling coincidence in the fact that the first indelible report of Johnson’s behaviour was also the work of a school master. Martin Hammond’s infamous notes on Johnson at Eton, which recorded his “disgracefully cavalier attitude”, his “gross failure of responsibility” and his deep-seated belief that he “should be free of the network of obligation that binds everyone else” is the opening source of Seldon’s account. Johnson’s “end was in his beginning”, he argues. Speaking to me about his book last week, Seldon noted that Hammond – who had been the “formidable pipe-smoking” head at Tonbridge school when he started out as a teacher – was a longstanding inspiration, both as an educator and a writer. “Two things,” he says. “One is that his report was typically acute and detailed, like a psychiatrist’s analysis. And second: just how much the character is formed very early on.”


From a review by Andrew Rawnsley of the biography:

If the reign of Bad King Boris looked dreadful from the outside, it was even more diabolical viewed from the inside. This is an authoritative, gripping and often jaw-dropping account of the bedlam behind the black door of Number 10 and it confirms that we did not really have a government during his trashy reign. It was an anarchy presided over by a fervently frivolous, frantically floundering and deeply decadent lord of misrule.

As Anthony Seldon and Raymond Newell relate it, never in modern times has the premiership been occupied by someone so fundamentally unfit to hold the office. That may not be a wholly original observation, but the great merit of their account is the weight of evidence they marshal to support the contention that Johnson was an utterly incapable prime minister. The authors say they have gathered testimony from more than 200 witnesses, a lot of them officials and aides, “the silent voices of those who will never publish memoirs and diaries”. While this necessarily means that a lot of the sourcing is anonymous, it all rings horribly true.

During one of many episodes of derangement in Downing Street, Johnson is to be found raving: “I am meant to be in control. I am the führer. I’m the king who takes the decisions.” The would-be great dictator was never in control because he was incapable of performing even some of the most basic functions of a leader.

He had no clue how to be an effective prime minister and no idea what he wanted to do with the role other than satisfy his lust for its status and perks. One of his cabinet ministers, who was also a friend, is quoted saying: “Boris absolutely loved being prime minister, its prestige and the trappings. He revelled in it… His philosophy on the way up had been to do, pledge, say anything to get over the line because I’m the best, I deserve it. Now I’m here in No 10 without any core beliefs, I can do and say whatever I need to remain here.”

He was as woeful at applying himself to official papers as he was hopeless at assembling a stable and productive team at Number 10. He was almost pathologically incapable of making and sticking to decisions, especially when confronted with choices that were in any way difficult. “Dodge, duck, dip, dive and dodge” was his motto for governing, aping a line from one of his favourite films, the sports comedy Dodgeball. Most of the time, he was just making stuff up as he went along. “Wow, where the hell did that come from?” was the reaction from his staff when he suddenly announced that he had a plan to fix social care. No such plan existed. “Put down in 3,000 words what you think my foreign policy should be,” he told startled officials at Number 10 soon after becoming prime minister. He did not form a serious relationship with any of his international peer group. Calls with Emmanuel Macron would regularly feature the French president saying: “Boris, you’re just not being serious.”

and more...


This is an excellent short thread, unrolled, debunking one by one the idiotic claims made by BoJo supporters in the wake of his resignation. You can deduce the exact claims by the beginning words of each para:


Ha - Nadine Dorries shows (yet again) her true colours. Small loss to politics, if not to satirists.

Downing Street has criticised the former cabinet minister Nadine Dorries for planning to delay her resignation as a Tory MP so the party faces a by-election in the run-up to the Conservative Party conference.

Rishi Sunak’s spokeswoman said that the ex-culture secretary should get on with the process of quitting as an MP to allow her constituents to have “proper representation”.

Government sources also pointed to Dorries’s record in the House of Commons, where she has voted only six times since late November last year. She has not spoken in the chamber since she was culture secretary, a position that she left in September last year.

The Tory MP for Mid Bedfordshire said on Friday last week that she was going to resign “with immediate effect” after her name was removed from Boris Johnson’s resignation honours list.

Ms Dorries has explained on Twitter that she won't resign until she's used her position thoroughly to investigate why she hasn't been awarded the peerage she believes she richly deserves.

She explains that this is "sadly necessary", one supposes to avert much wailing and gnashing of teeth on the streets of Ampthill by constituents distraught of the prospect of not having a Dame Norries to reign over them.

They're making Tilting At Windmills great again!

The Texas legislature passed some of the bills before they adjourned, but not the worst of them. My reading of sketchy summaries suggests that the legislature has ensured that electricity prices will go up in the future, but not enough or in the right ways to get firms to build new gas-fired generation.

Related, a friend in Texas has been complaining to me that the heat index numbers in San Marcos -- between Austin and San Antonio -- have already been over 100 °F. The most recent NWS prediction for June-August has Texas well above average temperatures. They may get another stress test on the grid.

On the subject of Johnson's education, the former Master of Eton wrote to the Times apologising for his failure as an educationalist in respect of his former pupil.

UK Legal Scholars Track Down 17th Century Murder Case, Prove Supreme Court Wrong

When the U.S. Supreme Court rejected an Alabama man’s double jeopardy defense in 2019, it did so largely based on the “feeble” and “shaky” historical evidence he had offered in support of his argument.

Justice Samuel Alito Jr.’s opinion for the 7-2 majority in Gamble v. United States included a lengthy discussion of what centuries-old English common law says, or doesn’t say, about the rights of 21st century criminal defendants.

In particular, Alito said Terrance Gamble could not rely on a 17th century murder case known as Hutchinson for the proposition that federal and state prosecutors cannot try a defendant over the same underlying conduct...

...“There is something about the tone in which Alito writes that makes you want to show him to be wrong,” said Alldridge, of the Queen Mary University of London...

...Since Gamble, the Supreme Court has cited the common law of medieval England in numerous decisions affecting the lives of everyday Americans.

Alito’s landmark opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization invoked a legal treatise from as early as the 12th century on the penalties for aborting a “quick” child. Justice Clarence Thomas, meanwhile, rejected the argument in New York State Rifle and Pistol Association Inc. v. Bruen that a long tradition of English law supported modern restrictions on the public carrying of firearms.

Mumford said she leaned on the expertise of English legal history scholars in her research on the Hutchinson decision and suggested that perhaps members of the U.S. Supreme Court, if they are invested in getting the common law right, could do the same.

“I’ve just been surprised that the U.S. Supreme Court hasn’t done that,” she said. “I think it might be a good thing to do if there is this commitment to originalism.”

The Committee of Privileges has published its report on Boris Johnson's lies about social events at 10 Downing Street during lockdown.

What emerges is BoJo's general belief that government rules and guidelines don't apply to him, and his utter recklessness about whether what he says is true. This part of his character is a perfect match with Trump.

Also, absolutely the same characteristics as noted on one of his early Eton school reports:

“disgracefully cavalier attitude”, his “gross failure of responsibility” and his deep-seated belief that he “should be free of the network of obligation that binds everyone else”

Clearly, Eton masters did not approve of or encourage such characteristics!

RIP Glenda Jackson. A great actress, and a stalwart warrior for the Labour Party.

BoJo is still vehemently denying that he lied. My guess is that this is technically accurate, in the sense that at the time he was making his statements to the House he did not believe them to be demonstrably false. In his mind, "at all times" means "at some set of times to be defined as suits me", "rules and guidelines" means "rules, who cares about guidelines", and "repeatedly advised by officials" means "my press officer, who had a personal interest in the matter, told me this is our story for the newspapers".

He did not set out to lie, he set out not to know the truth nor understand his own rules and guidelines. Which means he's guilty of recklessly misleading parliament, but he and his supporters don't care about that.

He, like Trump, believes that truth is whatever suits him.

How did we get here?

I'm at work, on my phone, so this will be brief. [This is hearsay but I trust the source]. A lawyer once said, truth lies at the bottom of a bottomless well.

The legal system isn't really a search for truth, it is just a better way of settling conflict than a resort to violence.

I also recall a line from Zelazny's Lord of Light: [Yama] the truth is what you make it.

I'm not advocating these positions, just pointing out other's views.

The legal system isn't really a search for truth, it is just a better way of settling conflict than a resort to violence.

Yes, it is a way to settle conflict without violence on the part of individuals. But it isn't just that. The persistent embrace of bipolar views is one of the shortcomings of all too many debates in our world.

Ah yes, the state retains its right to use violence.

"... the last refuge of the incompetent. "

"... the last refuge of the incompetent. "

I've always thought that should be phrased as "Initiating violence is the last refuge...." To claim that violence in self defense, that is in response to violence initiated by someone else, is incompetent is a demonstration of incompetence is nonsense.

On Glenda Jackson, here for anybody interested is GJ talking in the house of Commons a few days after the death of Thatcher.


"We were told that everything I had been taught to regard as a vice (and I still regard them as vices), under Thatcherism was in fact a virtue: greed, selfishness, no care for the weaker, sharp elbows, sharp knees, they were the way forward."

All delivered with her impeccable, and so-familiar voice and timing. So principled, when usually under such circumstances it is all de mortuis nil nisi bonum, and in fact as you will see someone tried unsuccessfully to criticise her for it.

wj: I just sent a comment to spam with the wrong handle, would you mind rescuing it? Thanks!

Mission accomplished -- wj

GftNC, thanks! I will watch it later.

Clearly, Eton masters did not approve of or encourage such characteristics!

That's not the issue - it is that they know they'll get away with it, because of their privilege which places like Eton perpetuate, and the fact that certain parts of English society actively encourage such attitudes.

A lawyer once said, truth lies at the bottom of a bottomless well

This sort of statement tends to provoke me into finding out who actually said it...

The quote is attributed by the early Christian writer Lactantius to Democritus, the 5th century BC atomist philosopher. (Diogenes Laërtius attributed something closely similar to Democritus a little earlier.)

Democritus quasi in puteo quodam sic alto, ut fundus nullus sit, ueritatem iacere demersam

But Lactantius quotes it only to say what nonsense it is:

nimirum stulte, ut cetera. non enim tamquam in puteo demersa ueritas est, quo uel descendere uel etiam cadere illi licebat, sed tamquam in summo montis excelsi uertice uel potius in caelo, quod est uerissimum.

- Lactantius thinks that what Democritus has to say is stupid, in this case and others, and that truth is in fact to be found in heaven.

No question that those so inclined do exactly that. And Eton more than any of the others, although plenty are almost as bad (Harrow, Winchester etc). Only exacerbated by Oxbridge afterwards.

Meanwhile, I can't help wondering what Charlotte Owen, 29 years old and with no relevant experience, did for BoJo to deserve a lucrative and prestigious job for life in one of our legislative chambers. Actually, I'm not wondering that hard. I have my theories.

Charlotte Owen is 29. She has a 2:1 in history and politics, a little under three and a half years’ experience in politics excluding internships, and a seat for life in the House of Lords.

So what? Her peerage is a genuine mystery, because nothing publicly known about her suggests it is remotely warranted.

On the contrary…

Owen’s biography includes only short stints as an intern in PR and the House of Commons, including for Boris Johnson; work as a parliamentary assistant for Conservative MPs including Johnson; and a period as special adviser to Johnson when he was prime minister.
She appears on the 2022 annual register of Downing Street special advisers as a grade 2 employee on a scale from 1 to 4, 4 being the most senior, with more than two dozen substantially more experienced colleagues above her on the list.
As Tortoise reported yesterday, she appears to have exaggerated the amount of time spent in Number 10, claiming on LinkedIn to have worked there from February 2021 to October 2022 even though she is not listed in the June 2021 annual register.

Work in Downing Street is a big plus for any CV, but Owen’s time there appears to have been entirely in support roles. James Duddrige MP, a former parliamentary private secretary to Johnson, said yesterday she “did an outstanding job working for the boss”, albeit “in the shadows”. Two former Downing Street sources told Tortoise yesterday her elevation to the Lords was “absurd” and “staggering”.

The Lords’ work. The upper chamber of the UK’s parliament “plays a crucial role in examining bills, questioning government action and investigating public policy,” according to its website. Its members “bring experience and knowledge from a wide range of occupations”.

GftNC, thanks again (your YouTube link).

Glad you liked it, ral. I particularly liked the Hogarth reference, but couldn't help thinking that things are even worse now than the period she was describing. Come to think of it, BoJo would fit perfectly in a Hogarth work...

"...experience and knowledge from a wide range of occupations."
The jokes write themselves.

Iirc Lactantius was also a literal flatearther* (and was seen as weird/stupid for that even by fellow Christians).

*if the pagans believe in a spherical Earth that's reason enough for it to be false, isn't it?
OK, he was a tiny bit more subtle but not much.

Btw, Latin does not distinguish between high and low/deep. Both is 'altus'.
It's a problem when translating Lovecraft into Latin: The Deep Ones and The High Ones become the same.

Since this is an open thread, this is just too amusing not to note:
Thanks to the boycott of Bud Lite, its sales are down by 25%. As a result, it has been replaced as America's #1 beer by Modelo. That's

  1. a Mexican beer. Which is
  2. owned by Anheuser Busch InBev. Which just happens to also own Bud Lite.
Oh. Guess that, as an economic attack, this looks less than effective. Not to mention benefiting Those People, who are Modelo's brewers.


Would not be the first time. I think I remember at least one another hilarious case where boycotters were sent to another company that actually belonged to the same people as the one intended to get boycotted (to get at the owners).

Still an Open Thread, so this is Robert Reich on the 5 elements necessary to distinguish fascism from authoritarianism. Guess which side he (I now believe correctly) places Trump and his supporters in the GOP on. This is the conclusion, in which he rolls the final 2 together, but it's worth reading the whole thing:

These five elements of fascism reinforce each other:

Rejection of democracy in favor of a strongman depends on galvanizing popular rage.

Popular rage draws on a nationalism based on a supposed superior race or ethnicity.

That superior race or ethnicity is justified by social Darwinist strength and violence, as exemplified by heroic warriors.

Strength, violence and the heroic warrior are centered on male power.

These five elements find exact expression in Donald Trump and the white Christian nationalist movement he is encouraging. This is also the direction that most of the Republican party is now heading.

They are not the elements of authoritarianism. They are the essential elements of fascism.

America’s mainstream media is by now comfortable talking and writing about Trump’s authoritarianism. In describing what he is seeking to impose on America, the media should be using the term fascism.


"heroic warriors"

LOLOLOLOLOLOL -- Let me know when you spot any.

A photo of that slobby pampered orange-haired heavily-made-up ketchup-throwing hamburger-loving anti-hero of theirs might be appropriate, but since I can't stand to look at him, I won't bother.

could make things interesting:

District Court Judge Francis Mathew ruled that Couy Griffin, an Otero County commissioner, is now disqualified from holding public office because he violated Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment by participating in the Jan. 6 siege.

"He took an oath to support the Constitution of the United States ... [and then] engaged in that insurrection after taking his oath," Judge Mathew wrote.

Not that I expect the same to eventually get applied to Trump. But it might get applied to some of the other public officials who got convicted for participating in the Jan 6 events.

wj -- that's dated from last September. Any word of an appeal? Asking out of the blue, without trying to figure it out myself since I'm otherwise occupied today.....

JanieM -- well, there's this from a couple of months later:
NM Supreme Court dismisses Couy Griffin appeal to regain Otero County Commission seat

Also this from February:

"heroic warriors"

Oh how I wish I knew how to post images, so I could show that priceless NFT card of Trump as superhero which made him lots of dough last year!


concerning heroic warriors:

It was a common (but dangerous to tell) joke in Nazi Germany: "How must a true Aryan be?" Answer: "Blond as Hitler, slender as Göring, tall and athletic as Goebbels, sober as Ley* and chaste as Röhm**."

*Ley, the head of the state run workers' (pseudo) union was a known alcoholic (nickname: Immerblau = always drunk).
**head of the SA (the brownshirts), more or less openly gay.

Andrew Rawnsley in coruscating form in yesterday's Grauniad:


Flinching from condemning the patently damnable is a religious inclination. In that context, I can't resist sharing this thing I composed to amuse my college-sophomore heavy-metal-guitarist nephew who is a Democrat redder in tooth and claw than even I am:

The MAGAt’s Prayer

Our Donald, who art in MAGA,
Acquitted be Thy name.
Thy recounts come, Thy deals be done
On FOX as they are in MAGA.

Give us this day our daily merch,
And forgive us our trespasses
As we assault those who dare vote against us.

Lead us not to education,
But deliver us from wokeness;
For Thine is Truth Social, and NewsMax, and Q-Anon
Forever and ever, unto the ages of ages.



I was particularly taken by this line in the Guardian article:
"The MPs did not throw the book at the former prime minister; they hurled a library at him."

Sadly, Britain is ahead of us on that front. But at least a book or two is airborne. With one or two more in prospect.

Trump is being charged with possession with intent to distribute. But he just had an oversized personal stash.

Trump is being charged with possession with intent to distribute

And, as we all know, possession is 9 points of the law. Unfortunately for Trump, there's that inconvenient 10th point.

The parallels between Boris Johnson and Donald Trump are striking. The distinction mainfest in Parliament's approval of the report must give people heart in the U.K. Can we hope for a similar epiphany from the GOP at some point?

Can we hope for a similar epiphany from the GOP at some point?

Forever is a very long time. But it's been truly amazing to watch how long the California Republicans have kept going down in flames rather than change. Some 30 years by my reckoning. So figure the rest of the party will take at least that long before reaching the epiphany point. For the GOP colectively; somehow I suspect that individual epiphanies are not happening.

Not sure whether it's refusal to change, or straight inability to change. But the effect, so far, is the same. Maybe when most of us Baby Boomers**, and maybe Gen X as well, have passed from the scene, something will change. But likely not before.

/ depressing analysis

** We Baby Boomers do fanaticism like nobody else. It may be our defining characteristic. Left and Right.

Can we hope for a similar epiphany from the GOP at some point?

As I understand it, the UK polls say that if an election were held today the Tories would go down in flames. US polls currently suggest the Republicans have a fighting chance at attaining a trifecta (House, Senate, and President) in 2024. So long as the Republicans are not getting wiped out nationally, there will be no epiphany.

To wj's comment about the California Republican party, I think the evidence suggests that the sane Republicans there have become Democrats or independents. The rump California Republicans are true believers. That seems to be case here in Colorado.

I think the evidence suggests that the sane Republicans there have become Democrats or independents. The rump California Republicans are true believers.

With our top-two primaries, the only real relevance of party registration here is which presidential primary you get to vote in. So, not that much incentive to change registration, regardless of how you vote.

Of course, the whole reason for adopting the top-two primary was the the California Republican Party had gone so far around the bend that, for most offices, the Democratic primary was all that mattered. Which pretty much disenfranchised the second biggest voting group: independents.

Of course, the whole reason for adopting the top-two primary was the the California Republican Party had gone so far around the bend that, for most offices, the Democratic primary was all that mattered. Which pretty much disenfranchised the second biggest voting group: independents.

Which is why I ended up registering as a Democrat despite not liking, or feeling any allegiance to, any of the establishment Democratic candidates.

Big tents ain't easy to haul up that hill, but they are better than sleeping alone in the rain.

Which pretty much disenfranchised the second biggest voting group: independents.

As I have gotten old, my take on people who register as independents is that they are unwilling to do either of (a) work to fix one of the existing major parties or (b) work to establish a new major party.

Many years ago now, I realized I only had enough energy to worry about one big issue. Once I thought about it, I realized that the Republicans couldn't be fixed on that one and there was insufficient time to grow a third party. I've been a registered Democrat since then and tried to push the party in the right directions on my issue.

And there's also the fact that I live in an initiative state, so can sign petitions and vote on specific state-level issues when the Democrats are afraid of them. Initiatives make nice goads.

Initiatives make nice goads.

IMHO, every state should provide for them. Sadly, there seems to be an effort afoot to get rid of them. Particularly in states where the party in power knows d*mn well that the voters would vote ()have voted for things that they dislike.

That said, the bar for recall initiatives in CA should be set higher than it is. And I also wish that initiatives didn't waste so damn much money that could be put to more productive use.

The comments to this entry are closed.