2020 II
2019 I 2016 201320102007
2020 I 2018 2015 2012 2009 2006
2019 II 2017 2014 2011 2008 2005

Former Secretary of Defense Don Rumsfeld is dead. As they say "If ya can't say anything nice..." so I choose to be very quiet on his passing.

Some early assessments of Donald Rumsfeld upon his death.

All of the Ds voted for an investigation. All of the Rs save 2 voted not to investigate 6 January!

Bill Cosby was promised by the fellow who was one of Trump's impeachment managers that he wouldn't be prosecuted back in 2005, so Cosby walks today. E. Jean Carroll, who is conducting a rape case againt the former President Trump, says: "THIS is why women do not come forward."

Further comments on Cosby and why women don't come forward.

Problem with Melania Trump getting good press is that she never made a name for herself as anything than that guy's wife. She's completely disappeared from public view since his presidency ended because she never developed any role or function other than to look glamorous next to him. Jill Biden has a status other than being the wife of Joe.

Side note: I notice how the two conservative talkers keep talking over the liberal one as though they're afraid the liberal will make some really good point that will make them look bad.

Some Republican Representatives and Senators have taken a bit of an interest in stopping human-caused climate change. Two solutions they recommend are 1. planting more trees and 2. nuclear power.

1. is certainly unobjectionable, but will not be sufficient. 2. requires quite a bit of heavy infrastructure. A wind/solar/battery combination can be scaled from a single household up to a large town without any need for heavy cables or power distribution stations.

Further complications of using nuclear power to escape the human-caused climate change problem.

A quickie survey of the status of Critical Race Theory at this time.

Uuh. Whut?!?!? A private donor rents the South Dakota National Guard to tackle a non-existent border problem in Texas?

Heh! Tucker Carlson of Fox News compares the credibility of various anonymous whistleblowers to that of the head of the FBI and the president. Uh-huh.

Tucker Carlson of Fox News has accused the NSA of spying on him (Carlson’s accusations were quite vague and relied on anonymous sources). The NSA denies this. Is it possible that 1. NSA is telling the truth and 2. NSA got recordings of Carlson's conversations? Yes, if Carlson called foreigners without going through proper diplomatic channels.

Yep! The woman who replaced Representative Liz Cheney as the number 3 Republican in the House tells a series of flat-out, straight-up lies!

Dems’ manta “Defund the Police” was one of their top policy & messaging points in 2020.

Including Biden who said “Yes, yes” about defunding the police.

There werw a few Democrats who said "Defund the Police," but most of them, including Biden, thought it was terrible rhetoric that made Dems look bad.

Absolutely, positively in 100% agreement with Representative AOC! Senator Sinema's reasons for supporting the filibuster are pure horse-pucky! 

Yeah, I think former AG Barr and “candid interview” should never be in the same sentence. Barr is an entirely cynical and utterly calculating SOB.

Pretty depressing pair of pieces about the complete lack of accountability in Washington DC these days.

Good! The project of Roman Catholic bishops to discipline the US President has crashed and burned, thanks in part to the Pope saying that that's, uh, not such a good idea.

This was to be a really huge overreach on their part. And I’m sorry, but to use any justification to say that Biden is worse than Trump is absolutely inexcusable!

Cool! Madame Xanadu will be in a TV series. She started in DC Comics in the late 70s and is one of those off-and-on characters who's in a series for a few years, she'll disappear for awhile, will reappear in another series or join up with a group for awhile, etc.

Lengthy piece examining a real blind spot with the FBI regarding right-wing threats of violence. There was plenty of evidence prior to 6 January that the attack would take place.

Condominium building collapses in Florida. Seems there was advance warning.
Unfortunately, it’s pretty normal for there to be plenty of advance warning for these types of things.

There was no excuse for the Governor of Florida to take 17 hours to declare a state of emergency over this!

Huh! Don Jr. has been posting on Instagram. Hmm...looking at his posts...nope. Haven't missed a thing!

Did the US "dodge a bullet" by voting The Former Guy out of office? Yes, but he caused a lot of long-term damage to the country with his reliance on amateurs and idiots and with his tendencies towards wanting to use violent solutions to problems that really didn't call for any such thing.
"'Just shoot 'em'—New book details Trump's orders to 'beat the f*ck' out of racism protesters"

Good! Derek Chauvin got 22 ˝ years for the murder of George Floyd!

Wow! When did you ever think you’d see a headline: “US Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland does a photo shoot?” But she does and there’s good reason for it!

"At Last, Rudy Giuliani's Law License Suspended"
'Bout time! People kept saying Giuliani was risking his law license. Glad to see it finally got taken away from him!

If, in the very highly likely event Rudy Giuliani loses his law license (his license is suspended for now), he'd be the third lawyer to work for Donald Trump, after Roy Cohn and Michael Cohen, to have lost his license to practice law!

Iran has a sort-of democratic system and has just put into place a new president (Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei still has the final say, even if the president has day-to-day control). The new president is a reasonably okay fellow as far as US interests are concerned.

This is really excellent point. If Jared and Ivanka (I refuse to use the term “Javanka”) really wanted to separate themselves from Donald Trump, there’s a very easy way to do that. They could say: "Biden won the election and it was a fair election" The fellow on twitter then notes: "They have not done that."

These two are so adorable! They spend four years right by the elder Trump’s side, making bushel-basket bundles of cash and now, when ol’ dad gets embarrassing they’re like “Donald who?”

It's pretty clear here from the blogger's snarky "CNNs crack investigative team" that the sources for the CNN story were exclusively Jared and Ivanka and that CNN did absolutely no other research whatsoever. Tell me again about how having lots of editors is better than bloggers working by themselves?
Pretty hilarious snark here.

Not that anyone but the extreme MAGA folks would believe that comes out the Arizona "audit" in any event, but there is no provision in the Constitution for being reinstated. If you produce evidence that you were cheated, you can run for reelection while saying "I was cheated." That is the complete list of all the  things that Trump can do if he can prove he was cheated..

Y'know, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is really, really good at lying. With a completely straight face and complete control of his voice, he said "The biggest lie being told in American politics in recent weeks has been that the states are involved in a systematic effort to suppress the vote." The blogger goes through the evidence that McConnell is completely full of it.

So Maggie Haberman, the NY Times correspondent who probably talks with Ivanka Trump at least twice a week and Donald at least once every two weeks, is now on Sean Hannity’s hate list as a “liberal.”

Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) feels the For The People Act (S1) is bad because, among other things, it “Bans state voter ID laws.” Are voter ID laws bad? It depends. Does a state allow hunting licenses but not college student IDs? If so, they’re using IDs in a partisan way to favor one political group over another. If they allow a wide variety of IDs, then they’re still not necessary, but they’re tolerable.

Seriously, who could have been surprised by this?
"Republicans Use Filibuster To Block Debate On Democrats’ Major Voting Rights Bill"

"Trump-appointed judge dismisses almost all claims involving driving protesters from Lafayette Square"
I still have a really major problem with the idea that the violent clearing of Lafayette Square was done to "protect" the President. He didn't have to be there. He wasn't carrying out any sort of important mission. He wasn't trying to meet any sort of scheduling deadline. His reasons to take a walk in the park were entirely trivial and could very easily have waited. This whole defense is very troubling.

Within the past week or so, I read some CNN people talking about their civilian equivalent of the "chain of command," the layers of supervisors who approve the stories that get aired. In cases like this, the CNN chain of command fails very, very badly and they produce this utter trash. Ashli Babbit was a terrorist who deliberately disbeyed a direct order not to proceed!

CNN framed the report as a Both Sides one: Supporters see Babbitt as a patriot, while liberals see her as a terrorist.

Democratic Senator Kyrsten Sinema thinks that "...the filibuster helps protect the country from wild swings back and forth between opposing policy poles."
The only issue where I can see that the US Government swings wildly between parties is in the pregnancy choice area. There were strong positions staked out by Clinton, then the younger Bush, then Obama and then Trump. I don't see any need to freeze those positions from one administration to the next. Obviously, as a Democrat, I'd like to see the Democratic positions set in stone, but just as obviously, if I were a Republican, I'd strongly object to that. There is no compromise. You're either pro-choice of you aren't. The 60-vote threshold is not a solution to anything.

Also, this is a truly stupid argument because it completely ignores what happened with the ACA/Obamacare. The bill was passed with only Democratic votes. Republicans didn’t like it, so when they got into power, they tried to repeal it. Guess what? It was too popular to repeal! With many millions more signed up for it, repealing it now is just a pipe dream. Doesn’t mean Republicans won’t try for repeal yet again, but that’s clearly not going to happen.

And yeah,

With this logic, what’s the point of elections where a party wins a majority?

Did people use CGI to fake the moon landing? Well, remember that the video Dire Strait - Money for Nothing was state-of-the-art CGI in 1985, almost two decades after the Moon landing!
Also, keep in mind that the computer memory used to conduct the entire moon landing could fit into a single 1995 486 computer! A smartphone today has 100s of times more memory than that!

Maria Bartolomo thinks that because not many guns were confiscated (as the blogger points out, there were a few) during the 6 January attack on the Capitol, then that didn't count as an "armed" insurrection. That also depends on how you define "armed." Richard Barnett, who was seen with his feet up om Speaker Pelosi's desk, had a stun gun on him. Is he considered "unarmed" just because he wasn't carrying a firearm?

Bartolomo also lists a set of "lies:"

Russia "hoax:" Nope, it was real.

"Impeachment with no crime" Language in the Constitution describing impeachment is fuzzy for a reason.

Hunter Biden: No scandal there.

Origin of COVID-19: No one cares. Fact is, Trump did a terrible job of countering it!

"Armed insurrection" See above.

We're able to examine the strength of forest fires going back 100k years. These last few years have been the worst fire seasons for 2k years. And yes, it's due to human-caused climate change.

Lengthy and very interesting thread. Goes well beyond mere fact-checking to examine Tucker Carlson of Fox News and his whole approach.

The physicist Stephen Hawking came up with a theory on black holes back in the 70s that has now been confirmed!

Good! Vatican tells US bishops not to make abortion an issue with the US president. Abortion involves sex and families, neither of which involve celibate bishops! Seriously, bishops need to stay in their lane and stick to issues that they’re directly involved in!

The blogger adds lots of political background and detail.

Seriously, for Roman Catholic bishops to focus on abortion right now is also just politically stupid as there are actually quite a few Catholics who approve of abortion choice.

Again, the Arizona "audit" is such a dodgy, sketchy sort of scam! What the #@^% is this guy up to?

Seems that one of the OAN "reporters" (She had no reporting experience before being signed up) who has unusual access to the "audit," is also supplying a great deal of cash to finance it all!

With 8.2 million sign-ups in 2021, The ACA/Obamacare is getting even more entrenched!

A while ago, FB asked me in a survey whether I trusted various mainstream sources. I don't presumptively trust any mainstream sources and the below is an example of why. The WaPo puts out an article that concerns both Democrats generally and the Biden Administration in particular, while quoting exclusively from Republicans!

Also -

… did … did an NYT op-ed writer just say it was a "coin flip" as to whether it would be a good idea to abolish the filibuster?

Progressives are trying their best to humor Senator Manchin and to not be accused of sabotaging him. But again, his proposals are a complete crash and burn failure.

*Sigh!* Yep, as someone comments, this is museum-quality ''BothSids" stuff that does far more to muddy the voting-rights issue and to make it all fuzzy and murky than it does to illuminate anything.

The car wreck began with the headline: “In Congress, Republicans Shrug at Warnings of Democracy in Peril.” Making clear that the article would view the topic through the eyes of the GOP, the headline stressed that Republicans were unconcerned about the issue at hand, which is exactly the message Republicans want to portray — it’s no big deal.

"‘Lab Leak Theory’ Is About Giving Trump A Pass For 600,000+ COVID Deaths"
Our World in Data does a graphic that shows the top 10 countries for Covid deaths. The only Asian country to appear there is India. Other Asian countries all adopted masks and social distancing and thereby kept their death rates really low. The point is, it doesn't matter how COVID-19 originated. What really counted was how countries reacted to it!

Our blogger quotes Biden at length as he describes his meeting with Putin.

1. Biden's meeting with Putin was absolutely a success!
2. Pompeo has absolutely no successes to speak of. Why is Ingraham asking him for comment?

House Republican Conference Chair Elise Stefanik, who recently replaced Representative Liz Cheney as the number 3 Republican in the House, makes a very casual assertion that Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee routinely leak classified information. This is an absolutely libelous assertion.

Every Senator and pretty much every Representative supported making Juneteenth a federal holiday. One of the white, male dissenters speaks about why he didn’t support it.

Had Juneteenth been officially recognized during the last administration, the hypocrisy would have been blatantly obvious as Trump is quoted as saying

“I’ve done all this stuff for the Blacks ... And they all fucking hate me..."

To me, recognizing Juneteenth is like taking down Confederate monuments. It's a good thing to do, period. Is it sufficient? Can whites just roll their sleeves back down and have a beer, saying that was a good day's work? Nope. It's a start.

An infrastructure plan without a pay-for? They want to spend $1.2 trillion without raising taxes? Bzzt! Wrong answer! Back to square one!

The former Senator Joe Lieberman and the group No Labels are involved in Senator Manchin's efforts to sustain the filbuster. Lieberman was not just completely useless in te stimulus debate of 2009, his efforts did far more harm than good. 

The 80s cartoon, He-Man and the Masters of the Universe, is updated to be more team-oriented and inclusive.

QAnon may pose a threat of violence. When you assume that you’re dealing with dark, Satanic forces, when “Donald Trump is secretly at war with nefarious forces of evil,” it’s obvious that you’re permitted to strike back in kind.

Yeah, sorry. Not the slightest bit credible. I can’t believe for a single moment that the violent clearing of Lafayette Square was for any purpose other than for Trump to get a photo-op.

"DC Says Batman Can’t Go Down On Catwoman Since ‘Heroes Don’t Do That’"
This was in response to a scene where Batman was performing oral sex on Catwoman.

I notice that DC Comics has kind of a safety valve of sorts on that. They’ve put out stories on the Crime Syndicate about once a decade, going all the way back to 1964, with Ultraman (Superman), Superwoman (Wonder Woman), Owlman (Batman), etc. These villainous duplicates of the heroes are very greedy, ill-mannered and also very sexually active.

Justice League director Zack Snyder had his Twitter feed censored over this.

Juneteenth is now a holiday! That's a good beginning!

It's very nice that Texas Governor Abbott has signed a bill to fix the power grid there, but wow! Texas had a major blackout way back in February where millions were without power in the middle of a really cold spell and he's just producing a bill now?!?!?! And keep in mind, this is not fixing the power grid, this is just the bill that provides for financing and instructs the governmet on how to fix the grid!!!

Yeah, Project Veritas does not do “bombshells.” They do maybe, possibly true stories that are usually pretty dull even if true. Yep! Their project was a bust!

Very cool! The former NSA translator, Reality Winner, has been released from jail. As the blogger says: “Long overdue, IMO. She did the right thing, and paid a heavy price for it.”

Yes, the new scandal with the Justice Department spying on members of Congress and many others is officially worse than Watergate.

In a school textbook, two slave-owning women have it tough during the last years of the Civil War. The author of course, expects us to sympathize with the white women whose slaves are freed. A number of the slaves didn't immediately go North, but they did expect to be paid for their labor! 

Oh, good grief! Ironic or just ridiculous? The House Freedom Caucus (long-time really right-wing group) says they’re starting up “the Campus Free Speech Caucus.” This is, of course, at the same time Republicans are going absolutely crazy over their desire to stop the teaching of Critical Race Theory. 

A truly awful idea from the other side. They want to take so-far-unspent funds from the American Rescue Plan and to use them for infrastructure. Let's hope this idea gets tossed out in the conference that will occur after both houses pass heir version of the bill. 

Aww, that's too bad! Actor Ned Beatty has passed away (his death was NOT Covid-related).

No, there is not a double standard for Republicans and Democrats concerning lies. The bloggers refers to pieces that detail Kayleigh McEnany's many, many lies!
What's the name of Obama's last Press Secretary? No one can answer that without looking her name up. You know why? Because she never lied!

Former Secretary of State Pompeo: "There is an enormous amount of evidence that there was a leak from the Wuhan Institute of Virology. There's a pile of evidence 100 feet high. I have high confidence that that's the case."
Also from him: "...We got very close to being able to make a laydown case for what actually happened and how this virus came to..."
In other words, Trump's people have absolutely zippo in terms of proof. Nearly a full year and NO evidence was gathered!

Wow! Incredibly sad! The MyPillow guy, Mike Lindell appears to have actually believed that his event was going to get a fly-over from military jets! Note: Only the actual, currently serving president can order such a thing.

NPR’s “left right and center” currently has as reps of left and right... Liz Bruenig and Ross Douthat.

Ross Douthat is a long-time conservative commenter, but I wondered "Who is Liz Breuning?" Went through Breunig’s Twitter feed for a bit. Not sure I’d describe her as a liberal. Heck, not sure what, if any, discernible political views she has.

Language used to describe Israel-Palestine is very outmoded and unsatisfactory. Piece suggests a range of substitutes.

I usually like NBC, but our blogger feels this interview with Putin was a mistake that unnecessarily hurts our president.

An examination of Russia’s “low intensity war” against the US.

NYC Mayoral Frontrunner Eric Adams:

“With new technology you don’t need school children to be in a school building with a number of teachers. It’s just the opposite. You could have one teacher teach 300-400 students.”

Nope! They were pressing for remote television-based learning back when I was a lad! Teaching is an extremely labor-intensive profession precisely because it can't be done by just sitting students down in front of a TV set. TV is not irrelevant, but students need to discuss the shows in order to really grok them.

Senator Manchin wants a process on voting rights where Democrats "bring Republicans along," but

"I [Jennifer Konfrst] don't see anywhere where Republicans are inviting Democrats along, or inviting Democrats to the table."

Problem here is one of definition. Who exactly does Senator Graham consider a "bad guy?" Putin certainly had no fear of Trump, nor did Kim Jong-Un, I can't think of any dictator who worried about Trump opposing him.

Good! Now that the US is well on its way to herd immunity, Biden is seeing to the rest of the world!

“And, because police are in the minority concentrated areas, the perception is that Blacks are being hassled over minor violations.“

Actually, that’s not just a “perception.” There’s nothing coincidental or accidental about police arresting Black people for things like minor traffic violations.

From Harvard:

...it’s the first step of mass incarceration, the initial net that sweeps people of color disproportionately into the criminal system....The implications of this enormous net of police and prosecutorial authority around minor conduct is central to understanding many of the worst dysfunctions of our criminal system.

Nah, sorry. The timing of the violent assault on the peaceful protesters in Lafayette Square and TFG’s photo op are far too close to be any sort of coincidence. Also, the actual assault on Lafayette Square jumped the gun and ran ahead of the Park Police.

Another mainstream media news service, ABC News, utterly disgraces itself by being completely credulous towards this claim.

BREAKING: Police did not clear Lafayette Park area so former Pres. Trump could hold "Bible" photo op...

Sorry Glenn, but I agree with Morning Joe that the IG Report "clearing" Trump of ordering the violent clearing of Lafayette Square is very, very highly implausible!

Woo hoo! Keystone XL Pipeline is dead! Took a decade, but it’s down! Let’s keep going!
Next target: Line 3 Pipeline! The oil, keep it in the ground!

The Keystone XL pipeline being shut down was just the beginning! (Insert villainous chuckle here)

With tax increases ruled out, Republicans do not have any sort of “pay for” for infrastructure.

Senator Lindsey Graham expresses the hope that a new theory as to how COVID-19 emerged will change people's view on The Former Guy. Heh! No, views on TFG were baked in long before the pandemic hit!

CNN is moderately useful as a news source and they often do good pieces. But their commitment to Both-Sidesing a former President and a wannabe Fuhrermakes for a very muddy piece with no clear conclusion. Is it accurate to say that "Obama and Trump intensify their battle over democracy?" No, Trump isn't fighting for democracy.
In Bertolt Brecht's Galileo, our hero says something to the effect of: "Scholars like to insinuate in Latin. I prefer to speak in plain German."

If CNN were to market this piece honestly, they’d call it “Republican opinions on the Democratic Vice-President’s trip,” but that would get very few clicks as the contents would not be very credible and would also be highly predictable, so they adopt a worst-of-both-worlds approach by assembling just such a piece, but by then dishonestly marketing it.

Your crazy for the day. Vaccines cause you to get magnetized! It makes car keys stick to your forehead! (Even if the shot is all metal, it's too small to contain enough metal to produce that effect). As the fellow here points out, none of the anti-vaxxer crowd even blinks. They totally believe every word!

Why does business hate government regulations? Because it costs them extra money. Why do we have govt regs anyway? Because disasters occur and they're far worse when business has not been compelled to add safeguards.

Native Americans/First People dissatisfied with sexuality education for young people. They're looking to make improvements. 

Does Iran have free and fair elections? Ehh, they're better than most. They're definitely freer than many others, but they fall short of US and European standards. At this point, they've disqualified so many candidates, Iranian civil society is looking for solutions other than elections.

Yeah, this is a seriously moronic point. If TFG was right about the lab leak theory for how the coronavirus started, that wouldn’t change the fact that he handled it very, very poorly!

Technically, Senate Minority Leader McConnell is absolutely correct when he says: "...the Supreme Court concluded the conditions that existed in 1965 no longer existed." What he failed to mention, of course, was that the Suprme Court was very clearly and obviously wrong.
So yeah, this is a real problem for Senator Manchin.

Brian Stelter is correct in saying that Fox News and their right-wing competitors have a great deal to do with spreading Trump's Big Lie, but Soledad O'Brien is also correct in saying that CNN is certainly part of the problem.

I’m utterly and absolutely baffled as to why the AG Garland DOJ would take over the E. Jean Carroll case, especially when the government was defending TFG over a rape accusation!

Yeah, I'm really not the slightest bit impressed by AG Garland's arguments here. I continue to believe he's in over his head.

Bwah-hah-hah!!! The Colonial Pipeline was held up using "ransomware" software and the bad guys got $4.4 million in ransom. But they had the money in the form of Bitcoin, and that could be retrieved, so the bad guys lost half of the money!

The blogger has complained about this frequently, but he's absolutely right to do so. The newspaper does not know what people believe, it can only relate what they claim to believe. Does Ms. Johnson genuinely believe that Trump truly won the election of 2020? She claims that, but there are many reasons for her to be lying.

Senator Manchin waxes poetical on the virtues of comity and compromise. There are many, many instances where you're better off going all-out on one path. The piece here is one example. Compromise was made in the 1890s, but at the expense of Black people. Another is the stimulus of 2009. We would have been much better off without watering it down!

Here's the problem with having unprepared reporters. Jake Tapper couldn’t respond with the appropriate scientific facts. A baby needs to be at least 22 weeks old (around five months or well into the second trimester) in order to have any chance of living outside the womb.

The Dr. Fauci emails are pretty much a nothingburger. This makes the rhetorical and threateed phtsical attacks on Fauci all the more disturbing. 

Hilarious thing about Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene's demand that the president investigate Dr. Fauci is that she wants an answer by 31 June! *Sigh!* Attention to detail, people!

Cool description of the creation of the Chicxulub crater by the meteorite that slammed into the Yucatan Peninsula (about 66 million years ago).

The blogger Digby covers TFG’s appearance at the North Carolina Republican Party Convention.

Hmm, so TFG is saying he managed to walk down a ramp that was gradually inclined without falling. Yeah. True enough.

One of the really sad problems is that Trump’s fans have been turned against vaccines, so even when their Glorious Leader says to get vaccinated, it makes them confused.

Chris Wallace of Fox News says that he’s looked through the emails of Dr. Fauci that were revealed through a Freedom of Information Act request. No smoking gun of any sort.

Good Lord!

"Like the Swiss Army Knife, the popular AR-15 rifle is a perfect combination of home defense weapon..."

In a world like that of the original Mad Max movie (1979) this statement might make some sense. In our world, erm, wouldn't a six-round handgun do just as well?

Good! I've long agreed with this! No one should be able to make you buy anything that you reject for moral reasons. If you refuse to purchase goods that were made in Israeli settlements on the West Bank, no one should force you to buy those products.

When it came to the 1/6 Commission, it meant that we were testing Senator Joe Manchin’s vision of how government could work. Manchin’s vision failed that test badly. Manchin is now doubling down on that vision rather than concede that the filibuster has to go.

Yes, agreeing on infrastructure should be easy, but from 2011 to 2020, the GOP held the House, the Senate or both and no infrastructure bills were ever passed. So observers have admitted that the Republican Party is perfectly happy to have our infrastructure collapse.

First Couple takes bicycle ride to celebrate Jill's 70th birthday.

Wow! Co-host of The Five (from Fox News) Dagen McDowell proclaims (as though everybody knows) that: "We all have healthcare in this country!"

Hmm, well perhaps she and all of the people she knows do, but according to the Kaiser Family Foundation, about 30 million Americans do not have health care coverage.

I saw the video for this speech yesterday. Truly disgusting! This retired officer was censored by racists who then refused to take responsibility for having done so.

Out of the two resignations that were demanded, one has been offered and accepted.

Interesting speech by former VP Pence. Certainly a study in very modest achievements. After the 6 January attack "we reconvened the Congress and did our duty under the Constitution and the laws of the United States." Pence then paused as though he was expecting applause. None came, so he continued.

I’ve been reading about the theory that the coronavirus leaked from a Wuhan lab and am not at all impressed with the evidence I’ve seen, the most important piece being that the lab leak theory is still just that. A theory and far from a proven fact.

Stephen Hayes supports the lab leak theory. Kind of a problem with that is that Hayes lost all of his credibility back during the early aughts by charging that Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden were working with each other.
Yes, their two organizations had meetings in their early days, but Saddam said "No thanks" and didn't go any further with al Qaeda.

Yeah, "They [The Biden Administration] want to derail all the progress we've made!" What "progress?" In what area? What in the hell did the last administration accomplish?

Now that long-serving Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu is out, at least for the moment, an assessment of his career from a peace-making perspective. By sabotaging President Clinton’s Oslo Peace Accords and by taking strong actions against Palestinians, Netanyahu made the US enormously unpopular in the Arab world.

Good to see that we're past the point of simply providing shots to those who want them and are now encouraging the rest to get theirs. Progress!

The Vision had a pretty convincing death during Avengers: Infinity War, but he’s also an android and comics are pretty famous for resurrecting popular characters (See the original Doom Patrol) so you never know.

This is very good news heading into the 2022 midterm. The Democratic message works!

Way back when, a pudding maker was packing pudding in cans with very sharp lids, so kids were cutting their tongues while licking the lids. The answer was not to tell kids to stop licking the lids, it was to get the pudding maker to make better lids!
Same thing with the filibuster and the broken Senate. The filibuster is obviously not working. Get. Rid. Of. The. Filibuster!

Oh, good grief! Senator Sinema has, apparently, no clue as to why the filibuster exists!

Her full and extended remarks. The fellow who presents her speech is right and she is wrong. The filibuster was not created by the Founding Fathers! It is a regrettable act born of the desire to defend Jim Crow.

Interesting letter to a constituent from Senator Sinema on the filibuster. She skips over an extremely important development. In 2009, the Republican Party decided to invoke the filibuster time and time again, entirely for the purpose of partisan politics. In other words, there's a reason Senate Majority Leader Reid decided to limit the filibuster in 2013!

Senator Bernie Sanders is 100% correct here!

Let's be clear. If 10 Republican Senators cannot even vote for a bipartisan commission to investigate the January 6th insurrection, 10 Republican Senators will not vote for anything meaningful to improve the lives of the American people. We must abolish the filibuster & act now.

Fox News has their "Mean Girls" getting all upset over the positive press coverage that VP Harris gets, complaining among other things, that Ivanka Trump never got such good press. Of course, pretty much everything Trump did was behind closed doors, with only loyal minions or family members to observe. So there were never any objective observers to tell us what, exactly, Trump did behind the scenes.

An important problem with Maggie Haberman's reporting for the NY Times throughout the Trump Administration was and remains that she reports what Donald Trump chooses to tell her. She's never done any independent reporting on him and chooses to not say anything he has disapproved of.

Yes, it’s quite interesting how, when Biden talks about white supremacists, Tucker Carlson just naturally assumes Biden is attacking the Republican Party as a whole. 

Biden makes it very clear that the two Democratic senators, Manchin and Sinema, are a big part of the problem when it comes to getting bills passed.

More stubborn Democrats! A Democratic member of the USPS Board of Governors doesn’t see the need to replace Postmaster General DeJoy.

"I think America is tired of being being told that it's racist," he whined. "I know I'm not racist. I know my family is not racist. I know most of my friends aren't racist and if they were racist I wouldn't hang out with them!!!"

Problem with the rant of Jason Chaffetz is that absolutely nothing he says is defined. What is "racism?" How do he or any of his friends know they're not racist? I have no idea how he thinks Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. defined anything.

Hmm. Interesting. TFG is being told and is telling others that he'll be "reinstated" as president in August.

This Is disturbing because these views and convictions are not based on anything remotely approaching objective evidence. Republicans think in a little over 20% and a bit over 30% that "Antifa" and "The Democratic Party" are responsible for the 6 January attack on the Capitol. These ideas are based entirely on propaganda and wishful thinking.

Skepticism about Israel and their relationship to Palestinians has been very different among Democratic constituencies and everyone else. Independents, Republicans and Democratic politicians haven’t felt the same way at all. Democratic constituents generally know what the “Nakba” was.

Tucker Carlson of Fox News goes through a short list of national problems, many of which are entirely imaginary.

Black residents of Tulsa were bringing white dollars into Black neighborhoods, which was part of the reason whites were so agitated prior to 31 May 1921.

This is also an important part of that story.

Reporters interviews civil rights activist Tiffany Crutcher about the Tulsa race massacre of 1921.

Woo-hoo! Hyde Amendment, which prevents the federal government from spending on abortion, is not in Biden’s 2022 budget! It’s been in effect since 1976 and is finally gone!


Physically, militarily, Israel absolutely clobbered Gaza. Politically, Palestinians as a whole are more united than ever before and even better positioned to de-legitimize Israel's relationship with them.

Defining exactly what "Party of the Working People" means when you're a Republican (sixth screen down).

Caitlyn Jenner’s campaign themes: “Canceling The Cancel Culture and Waking Up The Woke!”

Israel gets new Prime Minister after Netanyahu is tossed out, but new guy is even worse for Palestinians. A blogger says:

Bennett is not a real political improvement over Bibi. He’s just as revanchist, just as extreme. He just doesn’t appear to be a crook.

Hear! Hear!

This Memorial Day, let’s resolve to evacuate the Afghans who helped our troops so they’re not left behind to be slaughtered by the Taliban. We owe it to them.

The right wing is outraged Outraged, I Tell You!, that VP Harris told Americans to enjoy the long weekend. She's supposed to mentio the troops, gol durn it!

So, remember the Texas energy grid collapsing in February with around 750 people dying? How's Texas doing on fixing that?

We are now officially less than 48 hours from the 2021 Texas Legislative session ending. And we still do not have a finished bill to fix the electricity grid...

Keep in mind that the GOP wants to take money for infrastructure from the stagnant wages of workers!

CEO compensation, including realized stock options and vested stock awards, rose 15.9% from 2019 to 2020 among early reporting firms.

The Large Hadron Collider can produce energy reaching up to a trillion (10 to the 12th power) electron volts. We’ve detected gamma rays coming from the Crab Nebula that reach 10 to the 13th power.

On the 100th anniversary of the Tulsa race massacre, archaeologists are still trying to determine what the death toll was and where all the bodies are buried.

It took 75 years for the city of Tulsa to acknowledge the worst race riot in American history.

I find this very disturbing, that the DOJ thinks the former president's 1 June storming of Lafayette Square was a matter of

...police actions taken to protect a president and to secure his movements.

There was absolutely zero urgency to clear the Square. There were no deadlines of any sort that had to be met. No, the president should not have unlimited discretion to protect himself at the expense of the people.

An NY Mag reporter examines the "masterful euphemisms" used by a Wall St Journal reporter to cloud up and confuse how we should view the 6 January attack on the Capitol.

The complete mess that is Caitlyn Jenner’s campaign.

MSNBC’s Joy Reid explains the whole fight over history and race. The right wing wants “bed time stories,” but Tulsa in 1921 wasn’t an isolated incident.

And the answer to Senator Manchin's complaint is very simple. End. The. Filibuster! Manchin would never again have to worry about being betrayed.

The blogger feels that:

...we are in the midst of a domestic low intensity revolutionary war being waged to determine what America is, who it is for, and who gets to be an American with all the rights that come along with that and who will be, at best, a second class citizen with granted privileges that can be revoked at any time for any reason.

Interesting. Just finished watching the second season of Snowpiercer. Reminds me that in Animal Kingdom, Ellen Barkin did something similar to what Jennifer Connelly does here.

Aww, that's it! I'm gong to the theater tonight! Emma Stone in a movie that takes place in the 70s and it has punk rock in it! I checked my cable company and the stay-at-home version is $30 (And that's only if you have a subscription)! And yeah, I'm vaxxed.

Ahh! First theater movie in a long time! The "punk" aspect didn't refer to any of the music, just to the character as a designer. She had a punk rock esthetic. Good stuff, but had the same problem as Wicked, the novel about the Wicked Witch of the West. The author tries to explain how she later grew up to be evil, but falls in love with the character. Emma Stone was great, though.

Six Republican senators voted for the 1/6 Commission, but we needed 10, so the bill failed. Please don't tell me we can cooperate with them on large projects! This is obviously the high-water mark for any sot of cooperatin between Ds and Rs.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer speaks on the failure of the 1/6 Commission bill.

The  mother of Brian Sicknick, the Capitol Police officer who died after 6 January, couldn't get a lot of Republican lawmakers to meet with her. And as the blogger in the comment makes clear, the reason they're opposed has nothing to do with any sort of principle and everything to do with immediate, short-term politics.

The old playbook on Israel-Palestine has failed. TFG made it unworkable. Suggestions for a new strategy.

Problem here is not just the stinginess of the package Republicans are offering. How are they going to pay for what little new spending they’re offering? The money should be taken out of taxes and the wealthy should pay

Heh! Paul Ryan, probably the most useless Speaker of the House ever, doesn’t wish to criticize The Former Guy by name.

Huh! So Paul Ryan feels the Republican Party of today does not want "yes-men and flatterers .” Uh-huh. Right. Sure. Okay. Yeah, remember all the times Ryan stood up to Trump? Yeah, me neither.

This is unfortunately not surprising. The official death toll from February's storm that knocked out all power in Texas didn't cost just 151 lives, but around 700. The Texas legislature has been trying to distract people from that death toll by passing extreme right-wing laws.

The George Floyd memorial of Tuesday in Philly. Also comments on truce in Israeli-Palestinian war.

You see to me, Karen Fann, Arizona Senate's president, completely fails to grasp the idea of diminishing marginal returns. How much time and effort and energy and money do want to allocate to making absolutely, positively certain that each and every single, solitary vote was completely legitimate? Do we not have any other priorities?

Cool! Kirby Howell-Baptiste will play the role of Death in the movie about Sandman/Dream and his siblings in a movie about The Endless.

Yet another reminder of why Obama explicitly warned TFG about was what a terrible hire Mike Flynn would be.

Good! People are not letting this go quietly! No question Nikole Hannah-Jones (The 1619 Project) would have gotten tenure if she were a white guy.

Rachel Maddow covered this very, very good news last night! Three oil companies, all on the same day, all went towards renewables!

Could TFG run for president from prison? Experts say yes. Could Congress make a law saying that currently serving prison time would disqualify you? That would require a Constitutional Amendment.

The gymnast Simone Biles does truly awesome acrobatics!

Hmm. Indigenous Hip-Hop. Makes sense that would exist.
Ran a search on “indigenous hip-hop” and got this. Cool sample!

Good milestone to hit! 50% fully vaccinated!

Y'see, the Real America's Voice host David Brody and Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene both make the same error. Being Jewish in Nazi Germany was not a choice that people freely made. Being vaccinated is entirely a choice that no one is required to make. Was it possible to hide that you were Jewish? Ehh, perhaps. If you moved away from your community, changed your accent and hairstyle and religious practices, yes. Perhaps you could fool people as to your religion/ethnicity. Can you hide that you were vaccinated? Simple. Just don't tell people.

Very disappointing to see this. According to the judge, AG Bill Barr wrote a really bad legal memo. The American people deserve to see what a garbage fire of a mess it is. Amazingly, the Biden DoJ is keeping it from public view.

Both Israelis and Palestinians have committed war crimes, but the ICC prosecution is likely to look first at illegal Israeli settlements on the West Bank. The West Bank is not land that Israelis are legally able to build homes on,but they've been doing that for quite a while anyway.

We liberals are not disillusioned to see Representative Liz Cheney take positions that Democrats disagree with. She always made it clear that she agrees with us on a few basic issues, but is still a hard-line right-winger.

Yeah, *Sigh!* Like Benghazi, we're just going to have these eternal baseless sets of investigations that keep going over the same data and proving nothing new.

Army leaders support a soldier who was criticized by Senator Ted Cruz. He was upset because she acknowledged she had two moms and thought the Russian Army was more masculine. Yeah, the whole dispute is kinda sad.

Essentially, the Republican Party feels the way to address our budgetary problems are to take the money out of the pockets of those whose wages have been pretty much stagnant since the 1970s. The Democratic vision, on the other hand, is to take the money out of those who have so much money that they're buying crypto-currency and engaging in stock buybacks.

We have a very clear choice ahead of us.

The Universe is about 13.8 billion years old. Japanese scientists believe they’ve photographed a galaxy that’s about 12.4 billions years old.

The Times of Israel publishes a piece that quotes General Giap of North Vietnam saying that unlike the French in Algeria and the US in Vietnam, Israelis have their backs to the wall and can’t go anywhere, so Israel will fight to the death rather than be kicked out. Kind of a problem with that is that Israel depends on the rest of the world. If other countries see Israel as an irredeemably apartheid state, not all the determination in the world will save it.

Plane makes a forced, emergency landing in order that Belarusan could seize an activist and journalist that the Belarusan dictator is mad at. It is recommended that Europe act strongly in response.

NY Times interviews "14 Trump Voters on the Legacy of George Floyd" It's far from clear why such persons could be exprected to have any worthwhile isights. Hard to see how this piece got past the proposal stage.

Yes, the 9-11 Commission was formed 14 months after the Sept 11th attack, but I don't think it took that long because people felt it was the right time, I thought it was because the younger George Bush was pressured into doing it. Even then, the testimony given by him and VP Cheney was given in a single, non-public session and was never revealed.
Yeah, we need to know a great deal about what President Trump was doing between sending folks off to the Capitol and his calling them off.

This is very sad! Olga Misik has been sentenced to two years for her part in a non-violent protest.
Full backstory on her.

An exploration of the question, is support for Palestinians equivalent to being antisemitic? The pop star Dua Lipa answers “No.”

An examination of the violent language used by Trump and his followers.

The extreme usefulness of the Ford F-150 truck. Because it can produce electrical power, it can power utilities in your house during a blackout!

A Palestinian stand-up comedian talks about working in a public relations job where he can talk about the Israel-Palestine struggle, but tries to keep it light. This reminds me of my discovery of the comic book Love and Rockets. I was very aware of the fighting in Central America between Nicaraguans, Contras, Salvadorans, etc. With L&R being produced by brothers from Mexico, I realized it at least gave me a sense of how Latin Americans saw themselves. With comedy, our Palestinian narrator does much the same thing, lifting Palestinians out of a flat, two-dimensional view and on to a fuller, more human view.

Granted Lori Loughlin is a pretty unsympathetic figure to defend. But if we want to be truly fair, we need to defend everybody! She's done her jail time. She's completed that part of her sentence. She's working on the hours of community service part.
Y'all got complaints that her time wasn't long enough? Have at it! Have yourselves a time! Enjoy! But if we want to defend poor people who have done their time and now want to vote (they can't in several states), we need to defend rich, white people as well.

An absolutely ridiculous case of "BothSides!," this time concerning the 6 Jan. Commission. There is no similarity between the R & the D parties. The Ds can easily defend their words and actions, the Rs are heavily complicit.

An interesting, and I think a very true observation. There are no stand-outs among Biden's staff. Everybody's just concerned with doing their jobs.

The gymnast Simone Biles does still more amazing stuff!

The online magazine Politico makes wild claims about Biden and Harris. How do we know both claims are nonsense? Neither claim quotes any Democrats. Media is getting increasingly desperate for clicks after TFG kept things hopping all the time.

Oh, good grief! Israeli forces stormed the Al-Aqsa Mosque less than 12 hours after the cease-fire agreement was reached!

Cease-fire has held anyway.

Heh! The Interior Department, under it's new Secretary Deb Haaland, hits its first major controversy as South Dakota Governor Noemi wants to use Mount Rushmore for a fireworks show. First Americans want no such thing.

Senator Ted Cruz complains about the US Military being "emasculated" and "feminized," unlike those strong, brave and masculine Russians!

My problem with this image is that I see a very big and important distinction between being antisemitic, that is, being opposed to the Jewish people as a whole and between being opposed to the policies of the state or Israel. The problem with putting up a blue screen to say that I'm pro-Jewish people/against antisemitism is that I want to be clear that I'm very much opposed to how Israel deals with their Palestinian population.

Arizona Secretary of State says none of the election equipment used in the alleged “audit” can be use again as Cyber-Ninjas did not keep them properly secured.

AP fired a reporter because she belonged to a political club back when she was in college. Reminds me of the "scandal" of Peter Strzok and Lisa Page. No one ever showed that they ever allowed their personal opinions to influence their professional reports.

Further details on the Emily Wilder story. A classic example of “cancel culture.”

Rachel Maddow has been running lots of stories on the Arizona "recount," unfortunately because she saw, accurately, that it would be copied all over the country.

Selling weapons to Israel as Israel is attacking Gaza does not convince anyone that peace is actually our intention!

Palestinians are not going to be satisfied with just a cease-fire. They're not at all content with the status quo.

Good! Israel has annonced a cease-fire!

Probably not unrelated, the current actions against Palestinians have been "a PR disaster."

In rounding up the good and bad of the latest Israel-Palestinian conflict, Palestinians came out ahead.

Huh! So about 3.5 billion years from now, the Andromeda Galaxy will crash into ours. It’s currently moving at about a quarter-million miles an hour towards us. Not to worry! By that time, our star will be a red giant anyway!

Yeah, a reasonably accurate history of Israeli-Palestinian relations.

Yeah, looks like a unified federal investigation of 1/6 is dead. Ehh, just do it as committees.

Yeah, there really isn’t the slightest mystery as to why the House Minority Leader doesn’t want a 1/6 investigation.

Yep! Lowering taxes on wealthy people is about the only thing that gets the GOP out of bed in the morning! The rest is all grievance politics.

The lack of insider info and process stories as compared to TFG’s first year is striking and not at all difficult to explain.

Heh! Been a while since we’ve seen a good ol’ Representative Katie Porter smackdown! The Big Pharma CEO is flattened by the facts and research that Porter brings to her presentation.

Unfortunately for TFG, this is an entirely credible defense. People who took part in the 6 January attack on the Capitol claim Trump told them to do it. 

Sigh! The idiot caucus. A group of Republican Congresspeople decide to do a protest on the floor of the House to oppose the wearing of masks.

All 219 Dems say they're vaccinated, but only 95 of 211 Rs will state their status. The rest refuse to answer.

The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors is taking all kinds of grief over the sham “recount” in Arizona and they’ve just had it! They want to cut the whole cluster$%#@ short!

Quickie summary of bogus "audit" in Arizona.

Update (18 Jun): Unfortunately, Merrick Garland's DOJ still hasn't pulled the plug on this nonsense! "Auditors" have moved some mterials to a secret mountian hideaway.

So what is the Republican belief that liberals are similarly unhinged and believe untrue things? What do they point to in order to say that we're equally irrational? Right-wing pundit Mona Charen believes it is the belief that the younger George Bush "lied us into war." I read Bush's September 2002 speech urging the US to go into Iraq and immediately concluded that it was a pack of lies. It took Donald Trump about a year, but even he reached essentially the same conclusion, that launching the war was a fundamentally bad idea to start with.

I usually like MSN reporting, but Representative AOC comments on a particularly poorly done, insultingly-worded report.

This is a problem for the credibility of Israel. Even if Hamas (Gaza) establishes military assets right next to world media outlets and work spaces, it's hard not to believe that Israel is deliberately targeting media sites so as to reduce the amount of critical news coverage.

Well yeah. IF the Israeli accusations are correct, then the AP indeed shared a 12-story building with the party that ran the government of Gaza. AP denies this because that would have put their reporters at risk of exactly what happened, the building they were in was destroyed by Israel.

Angela Davis asks for justice for Palestine.

TFG had an aide named Peter Navarro who obsessively blamed China for COVID-19. Last we heard, he was "99.999% sure" that China did it. The blogger's right, Representative Nunes should ask Trump to release all of the information his investigations uncovered.

Agree completely with Representative Cheney that the House Minority Leader shouldn’t wait to be subpoenaed. He should volunteer his testimony on the 6 January attack.

Apparently, Representative Liz Cheney has decided "Hey, Trump and his people hate me anyway. Might as well take advantage and introduce myself to the American people!"

Unfortunately not surprising. State Department takes a "Both Sides" view of violence in East Jerusalem and between Hamas/Gaza and Israeli forces.

From the piece:

Palestinian Sheikh Jarrah resident Mona ElKurd’s Instagram video of her encounter with an Israeli settler who tells her: "If I don’t steal your house, someone else will steal it.”

Sigh! Of course Israel is threatening to topple Gaza's only cell tower. Freely available information is dangerous to those who wish to monopolize all of the information sources.

Seems the other party is getting used to voter suppression and "$%#@ your feelings" politics. Politicians are rejecting a voter-approved Medicaid expansion.

A "Proud boy" who, ehh, isn't too pleased with TFG's handling of the January 6th aftermath. "F--- you trump you left us on [t]he battle field bloody and alone."

Yeah, this description of TFG's "energy" is Our Glorious Leader stuff. Seriously, for me, half the fun of golf is that you get a good walk out of it. Trump takes a $%#@ing golf cart!

Was TFG responsible for the development of vaccines for COVID-19? Ehh,sort of. In the same way the elder George Bush was responsible for the fall of the Soviet Union. He was keeping the presidential seat warm while it happened (Harry Truman was the one who set out the ultimately-successful policy of "containment").

People are frantically hoarding gasoline as the Colonial Pipeline (5,500 miles long) was shut down due to a cyber ransomware attack.
Very sad effect of that. The police were chasing her for entirely unrelated reasons and she lost control of her vehicle for unknown reasons, but her car was filled with containers of hoarded gasoline, which exploded and caught fire. Her medical condition is being kept confidential.

Woo hoo! Fully-vaccinated people can more or less resume normal life! Other should still wear masks.

Liked the First Lady's "lament." She had just brought a pink mask to match her outfit! Unneeded now! The former First Lady was prettier, but very clearly never known for having any sort of sense of humor. 

Gaza is 141 square miles, Rhode Island is 1,214 square miles, so RI is almost 9 times as big. The reason I compare the two is the line: "The artillery and tank shells that began falling into Gaza in the evening forced scores of families to flee their homes..." Erm, yeah. Good luck with that. The title of the piece talks of possible ground invasion of Gaza. That never occurred.
Casualties for both sides on 13 May are 103 for Gaza and seven for Israel.

Gotta say I really hate to sympathize with Gal Gadot (Wonder Woman) for purely corporate commercial reasons, but I fully get why she doesn’t want to be pinned down on the Israel-Palestine issue. If she takes a position either way, she’ll lose more fans than she’ll gain. But yeah, sympathy for the Palestinian cause has grown a great deal, if only among Democratic constituents. Democratic politicians, the Republican Party and independents? Ehh, not so much.

Palestinian citizens living in Israel (there are about 1.9 million) are taking to the streets to protest the latest attack on Palestinians in East Jerusalem and Gaza.

US COVID-19 deaths fall to lowest level in 10 months!

The essential backdrop to keep in mind here is that lengthy voting lines are not inevitable. They exist because people have made deliberate, conscious decisions with malice and forethought to not have a sufficient number of voting stations.

The problem here seems to be that Senator Manchin appears to believe that his Republican Senate colleagues are sincere when they complain about election security. But if that was the case, why did the Giulani-led legal team in November and December end up with a pretty much 0-60 score? If there were any real and serious security breaches in the 2020 election, that's where and when they would have been documented!

So, after being asked more than once if he has any evidence to the effect that “automatic voter registration leads to massive election fraud,” Senator Cruz persists in changing the subject. Which of course, indicates he has no such evidence.

Woo hoo! NRA suffers big legal defeat!

All kinds of schadenfreude here over the legal loss by the NRA!

Lots of fighting in Jerusalem and Gaza.

The fundamental imbalance between the sides in East Jerusalem:

In East Jerusalem, Jews are allowed to reclaim property that was under Jewish ownership before 1948. But Palestinian families have no legal mechanism to reclaim land they owned in West Jerusalem or anywhere else in Israel. 

Interesting comparison of The Former Guy and a commercial business that's flailing with a non-viable product that customers like anyway.

Cool! MST3K has always been a cool show, though they always comment on such obscure films that I had never even heard of them before. They’ll continue with that as they list two films at the end of this piece that I’ve never even heard of.

Listening to Peter Navarro rant and rave, it’s quite disturbing to think that he once had a real policy position under TLG. He was the Assistant to the President, Director of Trade and Manufacturing Policy, and the National Defense Production Act policy coordinator. Seriously, the man sounds like he was working for some obscure website that hardly anyone had heard of.

Where does the former First Lady lie or misrepresent or even shade the truth? I don't believe Malia and Sasha Obama are at risk because they "don't know how to act" with police who might pull them over. Just look ag what happened when an Army officer was pulled over in Virginia.

The desire to have graduating students appear in a fairly uniform manner, that is, a "cookie cutter mentality” versus Native desire to dress in accordance with tribal priorities, meet head-on! One of the problems is that the tribal status of a student may not have any connection to their status in the school that they're graduating from.

An under-appreciated trend over the last several decades has been that the average age of first marriages has been steadily growing since the 70s. Curiously enough, that's right along with the growth of financial inequality.

Unfortunatey, by acquiescing in The Former Guy’s movement of the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Biden has indicated that he’s a “paper tiger” when it comes to aggressive Israeli actions in the West Bank.

Ahh! “Government By Competent People” So long since we’ve had that! A review of diplomacy towards Iran.

Eric Boehlert reproduces a Glenn Greenwald piece that reproduces a Maureen Dowd piece that very badly misstates what Represenative Liz Cheney is to liberals these days. No, she is not "an avatar of truth and honor." She is someone who recognizes the reality that The Former Guy lost the 2020 election. This is somthing that much of the Republican Party has refused to do! Why is this so hard to grasp?

Seriously, Maureen Dowd is so useless and clueless!

Update (18 Jun): An Evangelical lady who's convinced, convinced, I tell you!!!, that Trump's presidency was stolen and that Biden should repent!

The right-wing National Review says some sensible stuff concerning Representative Cheney.

Representative Liz Cheney is a hard-line right-winger, so there isn't much I agree with her on, but I agree with this 100%!

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy says that “unlike the left, we embrace free thought and debate,” unless of course, their Conference Chair (Chney) has been disrespecting Our Glorious Leader (Trump).

Cheney replaced by Representative Elise Stefanik.

Love it! Absolutely love it! Not only did they offer beer for people to get vaccinated, they offered the product of a local microbrewery! That's just win-win all the way around! Hey, whatevuh gets 'em in the door!

Looks like Representative Liz Cheney is soon to be ejected from her position as the number 3 Republican in the House. As an example of the mass delusion that the GOP appears to be descending into:

“I think I speak for many people in that Trump has never actually been wrong, and so we’ve learned to trust when he says something, that he’s not just going to spew something out there that’s wrong and not verified.”

Greta Van Susteran, who used to work at Fox News, makes a claim that, uh, no, no one uses such a term for birthday. No one has ever used such  a term and it's very highly unlikely they ever will. .

Ooh! Not good! A “ransomware” computer attack shuts down a 5,500-mile pipeline. Please note that neither windmills and solar panels require this kind of huge infrastructure. A hybrid system, a wind/solar/battery combination can be scaled to power everything from a single household to a section of a large city.

Special evening prayers at the al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem would normally have been attended by around a quarter of a million people, but around 90,000 showed up, enough to result in a peaceful night.

"Senate committee to hold markup on controversial voting bill"
The essential question here is why is the For The People Act “controversial?” The public appears to like it just fine. Is the opposition of the GOP principled or is it purely partisan-based? It demonstrates a real laziness on the part of @CBSNews to use the title it does.

More on the complete cluster$%#@ that is the Arizona "recount."

Gawd! The frikkin’ dumbass morons who serve in office these days! She’s a state senator in Arizona. The highway sign said: "Want to return to normal? Get vaccinated." She compared the sign to propaganda from Communist China.

Interesting piece because the Senate Minority Leader makes some extremely unpersuasive arguments against S1, the "For The People" (voting) Act, but he clearly considers the bill to be an existential threat to the Republican Party, so he's "All Hands on Deck" about stopping it.

Whuuh?!?!?! MSNBC's Chuck Todd gets an "Atta Boy!" from progressives? Yeah, we often beat on him for false equivalences, but he does good today, recognizing that the attempted ouster of Representative Liz Cheney is thuggish and that they support voter suppression.

And yes, for all of the good things I'm now saying about Representative Liz (Lynne) Cheney, the blogger is correct. Her family tree is not one from which one would expect a hero. To emerge The Former Guy didn’t just pop up out of nowhere. Liz’s dad had quite a bit to do with creating the Republican Party of today.

Exactly! The first three words of this NY Times story ("Democrats argue that...") are completely superfluous and serve no purpose. The assertion that follows is obviously true and doesn't need to be attributed to anyone in particular.

Back on March 10th, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said of the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan that "This is a classic example of big-government Democratic overreach in the name of Covid relief," and that "This is actually one of the worst pieces of legislation I've seen pass here in the time I've been in the Senate."
Kind of a problem with that is that Republicans are now trying to take credit for the bill that they voted against!

Hoo boy! Senator Manchin is just living in a world of fantasy! He really seems to think that he can get the other party to vote for Democratic bills!

Is our Southern border in a state of crisis? It was, but because the Biden Administration is staffed with competent people, all of the unaccompanied minors have been placed into homes. Problem is, Fox News kinda, sorta forgot to mention that the problem had been solved, leading people to think the problem was still a current one.

Problem with “getting back to normal”is that economically, “normal” wasn’t really all that good.

Judge Amy Berman Jackson of the United States District Court in Washington confirmed Barr lied about the Mueller report

Which supports what just abut everyone first thought, that the NY Times and other members of the press jumped the gun and declared that AG Barr had put out an accurate report when, in fact, he hadn't. The NY Times owes the nation an apology.

Not everybody got it wrong. The Seattle Times actually did a very good job of fully understanding what the report said vs. what AG Barr was saying.

Senator Ted Cruz complains of Big Tech "muzzling" the former president. No, Facebook and Twitter are simply not allowing him use their platforms. As private compnies, they're pefectly entitled to do that. MSNBC's Kristin Welker embarrasses herself by asking Cruz's question. Press Secretary Jen Psaki gives a good answer to that. 

Marc Lamont Hill interviews Vernon Jones, who is running to be governor of Georgia and asks a question that Jones was very clearly not prepared to answer: “What is critical race theory?” Jones blusters and delays and filibusters, but can't answer the question.

Iran decided to adopt a posture of "strategic patience" with The Last Guy. That's paying off as Biden seeks to get back to where we both were in January 2017. Had the Trump Administration accomplished anything worthwhile, that might have made the difference, but they came up with nothing that would have truly improved the US-Iran situation.

This is reasonably big news! CVS is now accepting walk-in appointments for COVID-19 shots. Shots are free, so anyone who hasn't gotten their "jab," walk on in!

Aww! Poor Mike Pompeo! He tells this touching story. Funny thing, the lesbian analyst he quotes sounds just like all of those people who come up to Trump to thanks him for this or that. Yeah, I checked out the comments. No one believes Pompeo!

Ooh! Red Sonja returns to the screen! Someone else played her in 1985. ‘Bout time we had a remake! The projected star
Hannah John-Kamen has done quite a bit of adventure/super hero work.

Oh c’mon! Seriously? Rudy Giuliani expects Donald Trump to pay a bill?!?!?! Has Rudy ever met Donald?

As people who follow my posts know, I have never once defended Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell but I really have to make an exception here. The Last Guy says: "...had gutless and clueless MINORITY Leader Mitch McConnell (he blew two seats in Georgia that should have never been lost) fought to expose..."

TLG did a great deal to lose those two Georgia seats! Had he adopted and pursued a sensible PR strategy, he's right. Those two seats should have remained in Republican hands.

Promises vs delivery. Biden promised 100 million shots, but by the end of his first 100 days, he delivered 220 million shots. On the other hand:

Jason Miller, a controversial spokesperson for Trump's 2020 campaign, told Fox News at the time that the former president was poised to "completely redefine the game" with his new tech initiative.

What The Former Guy has delivered is more like a Geocities (mid-90s) blog.

Update (2 June): Trump shut the blog down before a full month had passed.

It is kind of amazing that Gitmo's still around as the whole purpose for it to exist was soon debunked (It was not outside US law). Still, saw a suggestion that we might try TFG (The Former Guy) there as his MAGA fans can't get there and it does have court facilities.

Did AG Bill Barr carefully examine the law and the evidence before declaring President Trump to be innocent of the charges in the Mueller Report? Ha, ha, ha! Of course not.

Blogger feels Representative Liz Cheney's position is hopeless and she'll be quickly booted out. Another blog earlier today pointed out that, with The Last Guy, you're either in or out. You either regard TLG as Our Glorious Leader or you take the position of "principled critic."

Baffling and infuriating! The shooter had a permanent restraining order filed against him, but was considered okay to have a gun!!! How the $#@% does that work?!?!?!


Election security specialists with high-powered policy groups are calling for federal monitors to oversee the Arizona Senate's hand recount of 2.1 million ballots cast in Maricopa County.

Update (16 June): Federal monitors never appeared, but it's good tha people are getting concerned.

Rachel Maddow spent a few minutes on this last night. Republican Senator Blackburn charged that Biden wants to force everyone to get “Two years of college whether you like it or not.”
Erm, I was in the military and people can be forced to do something like that, but it would take enormous resources to do it!

I understand the philosophical point that the people in SF Gate are making. Snow White didn't consent to be kissed and how could the Prince have fallen in love with her when all he knew about her was what she looked like?

But the blogger's right. The Fox News people and Senator Kennedy take the problem far more seriously than any liberal does!

First off, I think Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is absolutely correct here:

McConnell described the 2017 tax breaks as the "most significant domestic accomplishment"

during the four years of the last president. But as the blogger points out, "the GOP tax cuts failed at each of the party's stated goals." So, because the Republican Party doesn't want their legislative legacy reduced to zippo, they're willing to let US infrastructure decay and collapse.

What's really sad is that this obviously-true statement ("The 2020 presidential election was not stolen") by Representative Liz Cheney is treated as controversial by other members of her party.

Propaganda is rarely a matter of flat-out lying and in this case, the bad guy isn't even one of The Usual Suspects. In this case, an accurate accusation was made and...then the WaPo just sort of...forgot to mention that the accusation was no longer true.

The former president apparently has this fantasy that the ridiculous Arizona "recount" will be the first of a lengthy series of falling dominoes that will eventually put him back in the White House. The really sad part is that he's still seen as the leader of his party!

Very good to see that people get the fact that the GOP is obstructionist.

Biden's economic proposals are really quite popular. People are finally realizing Republican economic policies really don't work.

Singapore puts together a hip-hop-style video to encourage people to get the shot (British call it the "jab").

On an editorial in today's paper. When President Biden addressed the Joint Session of Congress, he wore a mask even though he was vaccinated.  Because yes, it's good to set an examle. 

On April 26th, the head of the RNC, Ronna McDaniel put out the false claim that the Vice-President’s children’s book was being handed out to young refugees at the Mexican border. The claim was almost immediately disproved. Here we are almost a week later and the tweet is still up!

Senator Scott is concerned that Biden's "reckless" spending will put us $30T in debt. How much did Republicans want to spend on infrastructure during Trump's term? They never attempted to write a bill. Now, they want to spend virtually nothing. Whose plan is more responsible?

British tabloids are upset that the Jane Austen‘s House Museum is adopting an accurate addition to the usual talk about the history of the writer, specifically the writer’s father, who “was a trustee of an Antigua sugar plantation that exploited the labor of enslaved people.”

Merrick Garland's been doing great stuff as the nation's AG!

Good thinkpiece on Biden's speech the other day.

Looks like some places could reopen by mid-summer!

Sign of growing disaffection between corporations and the GOP. Great news for Democrats, of course!

Very happy to see CNN joining the skeptical chorus on the Arizona Cyber-Ninja recount.

Dang! When even a Ukrainian oligarch feels the need to distance himself from Rudy Giuliani!

Senator Marco Rubio says: “[small business owners] can’t find people to fill available jobs.” Well, you know, there has been a movement for quite a while to raise the minimum wage (been $7.25 an hour since 2009) to $15 an hour. So y'know, that might be relevent!


And here w have another case that QAnon completely failed to discover! Gee, it's almost like they have no investigative capability at all! Josh Duggar:

pleaded not guilty to one count of receipt of child pornography and one count of possession of child pornography, CNN reported. He faces up to 20 years in prison and fines of up to $250,000 if convicted.

A quickie summary of what Josh Duggar’s been up to for the last several years.

In the section named: "COVID-19 AND THE FAILURE OF REPUBLICAN GOVERNORS," the blogger points out that whether or not you caught COVID-19 during 2020 was very highly dependent on what political party your governor belonged to.

Way back in the old days (2012), Obama's margin of victory was so great (about 4 1/2 million votes) Romney conceded pretty much immediately. Biden won 2020 by around 7 million and Trump still hasn't conceded! 70% of Republicans means about 20% of the country.

Seriously, when an online magazine puts out a piece on a writing project like the 1619 Project and makes so many mistakes that the editor of the Project has to put out a seven-tweet correction, not sure if that calls for hara kiri (rittual suicide), but seriously! At least some people should be fired!

This might be part of the reason that TLG appears to be lost in a world of fantasy. If he thought the stock market was a real-time barometer of his success as president, then the current Happy Days Are Here Again performance of the market must be driving him nuts!

Wondering why we're not getting much news on the border "crisis?" The Biden Administration has appointed good people and has allocated resources. The problem is being solved.

Former Vice President Mike Pence is very, very upset that the current president is such an extreme leftist radical. Erm, approval for Biden's latest speech was 85%!

How both Israel and the US are battling the charge by Human Rights Watch that Israel is an Apartheid state.

Scientists working on better psychedelic drugs so that patients could get the comforting part of psychedelic drugs without tripping out.

As I said, Democrats can do business with Representative Liz Cheney. She's not a lberal, so we strongly disagree with her on a lot of stuff, but she's not a QAnon freak.

This was an interesting part of Biden’s not-exactly-a-SOTU speech. Sigh! Yeah, hope we can keep it up!

Pres Biden on what he hears from world leaders: "They say, 'We see America is back but for how long?' My fellow Americans, we have to show not just that we are back, but that we are here to stay. And that we aren’t going it alone – we’re going to be leading with our allies."

Yeah, I watched this rebuttal to the Biden speech and was so completely unimpressed by all of the half-truths and misleading anecdotes, I turned it off after only a few minutes.

Senator Scott (R-SC) gave the response to the Biden first-year Joint Congressional speech. Senate Minority Leader McConnell considered the speech as the future of the Republican Party. It’s hard to see anything praiseworthy about the speech. Sure, Scott “criticized Biden for not uniting America,” but Republicans have not reciprocated to his outreach efforts in any meaningful way. “Tim Scott explicitly told the public, ’[O]ur nation is starving for more than empty platitudes” but had no substantive plans to offer.

During his deposition, Trump Jr. was asked about Winston Wolkoff: "Do you know her?" He replied, "I know of her. I think I’ve met her, but I don’t know her. If she was in this room I’m not sure I would recognize her."

It's pretty clear from the rest of this report that Winston Wolkoff and Don Jr. were acquained with each other on a first-name basis.

1. Because Wyoming, Texas, Pennsylvania and Vermont all have two senators each, saying that the Senate is divided 50-50 between the parties hides the fact that Democrats represent about 40 million more people than Republicans do.

2. The Brennan Center says: “As of March 24, legislators have introduced 361 bills with restrictive provisions in 47 states.” Both sides are attempting an “overhaul” of our voting laws. The difference is that Democrats want to do it all in two bills, HR 1 and HR 4.

3. Senator Manchin doesn’t want “a voting bill to restructure the voting of America on a partisan line” basis. Okay, but does he have a realistic plan to reach a voting bill on a bipartisan basis? It’s a nice idea that we can all sit down and sing kumbaya together, but we need practical solutions!

Sorry, I just can’t see that Manchin has any sort of point here.

Hmm, think the two sides are ju-u-ust a little bit apart! Biden wants an infrastructure spending bill of $2.3 trillion. Republicans, once we eliminate all of the BS, want $0.189 trillion.

Yeah, this does not increase my confidence in the ridiculous and unnecessarily secretive "audit" of last November's vote in Arizona!

Yeah, I'd hate to use Gitmo to prosecute Trump, but it's a highly secure place in which to do it. Already has a lot of the necessary facilities and is inaccessible to mob vengeance.

Human Rights Watch has declared Israel to be an Apartheid state, where

...the Israeli state systematically privileges the Jews, wherever they are, and disprivileges the Palestinians, an the basis of race.

I saw on Twitter last night that "Iroquois Confederacy" was trending in response to Rick Santorum's speech. As a young'un, I was vaguely aware that there was an Iroquois Confederacy, but had no idea as to how significant it was to organizing our government. Native Americans were pretty ticked off about his comment.

Update (23 May): Santorum fired from CNN.

From 1993 to 2017, we had a top income tax rate of 39.6% at the maximum (going as low as 35% for many years), then it went to 37%, now Biden wants to put it back at 39.6%. Axios calls this new rate “eye-popping.” Journalistic FAIL!!!

Many years ago, politicians argued that the president should have a “line item veto,” that, after signing a bill, he should be able to go through and delete certain provisions. One of the more powerful arguments against it was that an already-lengthy process would be interminably stretched out still further. Instead of having the process end with the signing, it would then go on and on. This by Arizona will do the same thing to our elections. Right now, elections end with finality when states certify the results.

The Fox & Friends crew is desperate to explain why Biden is more popular than The Last Guy ever was!

Ah, now I get it! Larry Kudlow was trying to make fun of us crazy liberals and spoke of "plant-based beer," as though beer was actually some variety of Soylent Green.  

What... what does Larry Kudlow think beer is made from exactly?”

Fox News has now had to admit that, no, there is no ban on beef. No one’s consumption will be limited.

430k years ago, a meteorite about 100 to 150 meters wide broke up into tiny particles and super-heated gas and hit Antarctica at the speed of several miles per second.

Senator Lindsey Graham is very upset with US policy under Biden. He really went off on current policy towards Iran:

”...the Iranians are off the mat, [Biden]'s opening up negotiations with the Iranian regime and they haven't done a damn thing to change.”

Did the former president have Iran “on the mat?” Looking at the Global Security piece, it’s far from clear that Iran felt itself on the defensive. It was actually quite clear that Russia and China were not cooperating in any kind of alliance against Iran.

Newt Gingrich is convinced that Biden is “waving a red flag at the bull” by supporting liberal priorities. The way I see it, Biden is simply supporting liberal priorities and really couldn’t care less what the right wing thinks. Frankly, for the party that said “#$@% your feelings” in 2017 when they were in power, for them to think liberals are now going to feel any sympathy for them is pretty rich.

MSNBC’s Tiffany Cross reminds us that former Speaker John Boehner wasn’t that heroic or respectable when he was in office and that we shouldn’t get too excited now, either.

This is very good news! From the 70s onward, business and the GOP had been very tightly allied. Starting with LGBTQ rights, the relationship began to fray and they started growing apart. Democrats are finding more and more that business is on their side!

Alexei Navalny has gotten a check-up by trustworthy doctors, but their diagnosis is that he really needs to be checked back into a proper hospital to receive time-urgent treatment.

This is a real problem with the consumers of media today. We have people checking different sources, they check both Fox News and CNN, but they don't have any means of being able to critically distinguish between the two. All they know is "Different people are saying different things."

Aww! That’s sweet! The kids include Kale in their football game!

Well worth the two minutes it takes to watch this. Olivia Troye tells us the inside story of the day The Last Guy suggested that people might try bleach to deal with the coronavirus. An alarmingly high number of people actually tried to do that.

Important part of a lengthy twitter thread. This is about the company Cyber Ninja that's conducting an audit of November's vote in Arizona. Rachel Maddow discussed them on her show last night (22 April - transcript of show). Does not appear to be a professional outfit!

Yeesh, what a mess! The recount problems in Arizona.

The recount conducted by the "Cyber Ninjas" has all kinds of problems and desperately needs oversight.

Charles Darwin came up with theory of evolution. Many have improved on it, but his framework is still the template that everyone follows. John Maynard Keynes came up with modern economic theory. People have made really strenuous efforts to replace it and the Republican Party is absolutely convinced that Keynes was replaced. But he wasn't. Keynes is still the template.

Twitter has all sorts of fun as conservative commenter Ben Shapiro shows off a $3 piece of wood that he bought at Home Depot. Why? They're heroically and courageously remaining out of Georgia's voting fight, meaning they support voter suppression as "neutrality always serves the oppressor, never the oppressed."

Seriously, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has been trying to get corporations involved in politics for many decades. He's changed his mind now, just they consult their polls and spreadsheets and decide that standing for democracy is the profitable thing to do!

Many people disagree with the Derek Chauvin verdit. Of course, they tend to be followers of QAnon.

Why are our police so violent? Part of the answer may have to do with a training course that encourages a military-style understanding of how policing works. Ufortunately, the fellow who provides this training doesn't have the credentials to do so.

"Breaking: Israeli Neo-Fascist LeHava Is Wilding Through Jerusalem"

Sounds like very bad news in Jerusalem.

So the latest Republican infrastructure plan is they want to spend $0.568 trillion whereas Biden wants $2.3 trillion. Erm, yeah, the two sides are pretty far apart!

I've always hated it when political figures speak in vague, fuzzy generalities. When Ben Carson speaks about people injecting politics into vaccinations, he's really only talking about his side of the political aisle. Democrats didn't really do that.

I'm sorry, the hypocrisy here is just unbelievably thick! Senator Cruz talks about the "Rule of Law" after being very quiet or outright supportive during four years under the last president, who really, truly thought the Department of Justice was his very own personal law firm.

Republican senators want spending cuts to equal the new spending. Of course, the cuts they always settle on are those of politically weak constituencies. Never those who make lots of political contributions, etc.

Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo won himself some really, really bad reviews as the SoS! Larger piece here also looks at Chris Christie and his campaign for president.

Sagittarius A* (pronouncing sag-A-star) is a 4.6-million-solar-mass black hole at the center of our galaxy. Something caused it to flash at 100 times its usual brightness.

Say her name: Makhia Bryant! Also, a fact-check piece says the knife was in Bryant's hand and not on the ground. Does that justify her being shot? $%#@ no!

Doesn't really sound to me as though the police were in any danger.

Woo hoo! Vanita Gupta is confirmed! The piece goes through all of the trouble she had to go through.

So where are we on infrastructure? Biden wants to spend well over $2 trillion, Representative AOC thinks that's being cheap, the moderate group of Republicans advocates for a $0.8 to $0.6 trillion bill and of course there are the hard-liners who think "Democrats should be denied a win at all costs" and want to spend nothing.

The Derek Chauvin verdict on the murder of George Floyd reminds me of the 2002 conviction of a Roman Catholic priest for pedophilia/child rape. It was the first step in a long journey that still isn't really finished. The Church has come a long way since then, but no, the goal was not "chaos," it was justice. Eventually, our police departments will be brought under control as well.

Ahh! More policies from TLG (The Last Guy) being tossed into the dumpster! This time, it's about the environment. 

"Insider" books on Trump are not selling well as the MAGA crowd doesn't want to read about palace intrigue when there is no palace. Best quote from the larger piece: "I think Trump is fading much quicker from the national consciousness than people were banking on.”

Representative Maxine Waters is not at all impressed by GOP members freaking out over her remarks.

Allegedly, Democrats are angry at Representative Waters. Can we find any Democrats to quote? Err...um.

Ah yes! I saw a number of episodes of the 1972-75 Kung Fu series. Good to see an updated reboot of it.

Derek Chauvin: Guilty!

Philonise Floyd (George's brother): "It's justice."

Thought on what the Chauvin verdict meant.

This initial report on George Floyd’s death should raise awareness on how many other sanitized reports there probably are out there.

Very interesting. The official line of the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) is that the trial was fair and that former Officer Chauvin was properly convicted.

I followed this dispute on Twitter yesterday. Again, where were the editors?!?!?! When the writer has to defend his work almost immediately after publication from a chorus of critics that are all making the same point, that's a massive editor/writer FAIL!

Good! This change is just rhetorical, but it's a very positive change. "Illegal alien" is out, “undocumented noncitizen” is in.

Woo hoo! First flying craft on another planet!

The spunky little chopper stayed in the air nearly four times longer than the Wright brothers’ first flight (not that it’s a contest)...

Aww! Sorry to hear that Walter Mondale has died.

We really need H.R. 1 to pass in the Senate. Only way to do that is to eliminate the filibuster.

Heh! You can see with Brianna Keilar's promotion (to a morning co-host) that CNN has clearly made some strategic decisions, chiefly that Fox News is now a target at which CNN hosts can "fire at will."

New technology would be nice, but switching the US power supply over to 100% renewables can be done using just current technology for $4.5 trillion, or about three times the last covid/stimulus bill. 

It cost al Qaeda about half a million to launch the September 11 attacks. The US has spent enough on the war in Afghanistan to have paid off all of our student debt, with $600 billion left over. We’ve spent $296 billion just on veteran care alone.

Trudy Rubin, a columnist in the Philadelphia Inquirer, compares Afghanistan to Germany and South Korea, two states that have received protection from the US Government for a great many years. Problem is, I think that after a 20-year occupation, the government of Afghanistan resembles that of South Vietnam far more than it does the other two. The collapse of South Vietnam was very rapid. “We kicked in the door and the house fell down.”

So it seems that around 15 years after the TV series Friends ended, Courtney Cox has settled in the horror genre as her regular thing.

Yeah, I very strongly disagree with the former Speaker John Boehner that the problem with passing gun safety measures back when he was in office was that Democrats and Republicans couldn't agree. The real problem was that Republicans felt completely beholden to the NRA and the NRA didn't want reforms.

The former Speaker Boehner tries very, very hard to keep the Republican Party and especially the hard-line Freedom Caucus, out of the discussion. He simply refuses to admit that his own party was a problem.

Dana Bash of CNN appears to see her role as merely to get the views of various people "on the record." She doesn't appear to see her role as involving any sort of pushback or arguments.

So essentially what Stephen Miller is saying is that he'd like to go back to the days before the Civil Rights Act of 1965, when states could make their own rules in order to remain in power, just as Georgia is attempting to do today.

Yeah, Roger Stone is definitely in trouble here! An LLC (Limited Liability Corporation) is so that you can invest in a business, not so you can pay for

a down payment on a Fort Lauderdale condominium, paid for personal expenses and covered some of their tax liabilities…

and even groceries!

Wow! Representative Ted Lieu is right! This group, led by Representatives Marjorie Taylor Greene and Paul Gosar, is a real mess and yes, sounds straight out of the Third Reich. This piece includes their policy platform. The second page begins with "Election fraud" and it's quite clear that the 60 or so cases Rudy Giuliani and company initiated and that all failed didn't make the slightest impression on Greene & Gosar.

Heh! Well, that didn't last long!


What’s interesting is that after Kevin McCarthy and Liz Cheney hinted around that she should have kept it in the original German, [Representative M.T.] Greene quickly walked it back, and genuflected to Trump as the one, true America Firster.

Good! I followed this case with great alarm and am very happy Ellis has saved the Biden Administration the trouble of having him occupy such a sensitive position. Michael Ellis was assigned to be the NSA General Counsel, from which he could have passed all sortss of information on to Trump and others. Trump's phone call to Ukraine was the basis for his first impeachment. Ellis was one of the lawyers who hid the records of that phone call on a top-secret server.

Ooh! Not good! Alexei Navalny is conducting a hunger strike. He really can't withstand one in his condition and so might die at any minute.

Good for Meghan McCain! She stands up for Alexei Navalny and encourages fellow Republicans to do the same.

Update (9 May): Navalny ends his hunger strike with the promise of better medical care.

Do both white and Black people suffer from police violence? Yes.

Do whites suffer statistically more than Blacks? Yes.

Do Black people suffer proportionately more than whites do? Yes. The white population in the US is 76.3%, the Black population is 13.4%. But the numbers of Black people killed is about half that of whites.

This is kind of a problem with the GOP position on infrastructure. They allegedly want for Americans to have nice things, but if the 2017 tax cut is completely untouchable, then they can't seem to favor any way of paying for it.

Ugh! That's an unpleasant milestone! Total world coronavirus death toll just topped 3 million.

I think one of the problems that Tucker Carlson is complaining about, the rapid pace of change that the Senate is now able to make, is partially due to the complete Democratic rejection of austerity economics, but a really big factor is that either Republicans have been in charge of the Senate or they've been using the filibuster to block everything useful for quite some time, so now there's a backlog of bills that really need to be passed.

Day-yu! Pat Robertson is "Woke!" Seriously, Robertson says a lot of good stuff here very much including the idea that if you don't pay for good government services, you don't get good government services.

This is one of the reasons I appreciate the blogs/alternative media. The usual mainstream media (MSM) tends to take the "View from Nowhere," the idea that people have no history and that nothing they said in the recent past should be held against them. The blogs take the view of "Then this &%#@ing guy...!"

See, this is the other half of the problem. not only are Black people being killed by police officers, but guys like this, apparently, have absolutely nothing to fear from the police! What happened to this guy should be the ordinary, standard default for all citizens!

I've spoken of Representative Liz Cheney as someone Democrats can work with. Senator Tom Cotton is someone that Democrats can't work with! The filibuster has to be removed from Senate procedures!

Ivanka Trump get her shot today! Good for her!
Problem (for her): The MAGA people are furious and dismissive as she's pushing back against QAnon and anti-vaxxer theories. Whatcha gonna do, eh?

Biden Administration acts in a way that distresses those fringe political groups that snidely refer to our problems with Russian interference with our elections as "Russiagate."

Mark Zuckergerg, the CEO of Facebook and the former Governor of California Arnold Scwartzenegger, both made no-strings grants to election officials to enable the voting effort. So naturally, the GOP is trying to make such grants illegal.

Would Republicans filibuster an anti-Asian hate crime bill? Yes, the whole point of Republican filibusters is to stop everything regardless of merit.

Blogger looks at US Annual Threat Assessment as regards the Middle East, especially Afghanistan.

CBS News:

The hearing, a years-long annual tradition, did not take place at all in 2020, after protracted negotiations between then-DNI John Ratcliffe and the committees about the format of the event ended in a stalemate.

In other words, The Last Guy got all upset because the intelligence agency chiefs were publicly contradicting him.

Senator John Cornyn asks Assistant Attorney General nominee Kristea Clarke a really stupid question because he was unaware that it was based on a satire.  Obviously, Cornyn was poorly served by incompetent staff, but as he's the guy in charge, it's ultimately his fault.

This is very, very good news! Corporations have decided that it's a good PR move to be in favor of democracy! This decision sets them directly against the Republican Party, which is trying to restrict the vote.

Lots and lots of very good questions about the Daunte Wright police shooting case. In the update, developments in the Breonna Taylor case.

For Democrats to dump the 2017 tax break is apparently a deal-breaker. But the tax break accomplished nothing. It didn't even pay for itself. The GOP doesn't have any alternative idea to fund infrastructure. Saw a comment today that it'll be funded by "rainbows and unicorn farts." 

See, here's the problem with short-term capitalist thinking. A few companies gave one-time bonuses as a response to the 2017 tax cut but that was about it. They now find they can't justify the $1.9 trillion that it cost the Treasury. Intelligent, long-term planning would have meant reducing their own, short-term profit and then they could have justified further tax breaks.

Yep! Agree completely! “We're done! Let's go home (from Afghanistan).”

The plan for Afghanistan is just GTFO!

The blogger gives a hearty “Hoo yah!” to our leaving Afghanistan. 2019 saw the dropping of nearly 7,500 bombs on that country, accomplishing what?

Two groups of Democrats on negotiations with Iran, a larger group that wants true diplomacy and a smaller group that wants to keep trying the Trump method. The Trump method was not producing results. Neither Obama nor Trump was in direct talks with Iran at the ends of their respective terms, but Obama was in a much more promising position.

Problem with the Senator Menendez letter is that it brings in many other issues. I believe the reason the Obama 2015 deal happened is because it was focused on just one. He didn't try to resolve every issue under the sun all in one big agreement.

Yeah, I really couldn't care less what former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo thinks of the Biden Administration getting back into the Iran nuclear deal. The Trump-Pompeo policy was obviously a complete failure.

If, as Bunch suggests, traffic stops are intended to increase police revenue, then we're engaged in a "false economy." We're paying for that revenue through more violence at traffic stops.

Was the shooting of Daunte Wright a racist act? What is clear is that the reason he was stopped in the first place was that the police department needs to fund itself through making BS traffic stops and then fining people. They can't do this to white people as whites have political power, so they'd soon be barred from doing that, so they do it to Black and brown people. In effect, yes. If the policy is not explicitly racist, it might as well be.

On the general subject of disposable people, why was the Dakota Access oil pipeline designated to be where it was? The Standing Rock tribe felt it was because the alternative was to run it through a white area near the city of Bismarck ND and that posed an unacceptable danger to Bismarck's drinking water, so they chose to run it through tribal land instead. Was that a racist decision? Yes. The tribal people were considered to be disposable.

So what's up on the Russian-Ukranian border? Probably just saber-rattling, Putin may just be bluffing and trying to distract ordinary Russians from the pandemic and from how he's treated Alexei Navalny. Let's hope that's all it is.

Vaccinations are going well, which is very good news, as we're clearly in a race against new infections.

Tennessee governor signs bill allowing most adults 21 and older to carry handguns without a background check or training.

Four days later...

a mass shooting at a high school in Knoxville, Tennessee

Real estate people are beginning to realize their customers are taking climate change into account when deciding where to live. Over a third are very aware of potential sea level rise.

Really? All of the things, both good and bad, that this country is facing today and the number one topic of discussion in Wyoming is the border with Mexico?!?!?!
Sounds to me like the real problem there is that people get all of their political information from Fox News!

Ted Nugent:

"You know, I guess I would ask you — because I'm addicted to truth, logic and common sense — and my common-sense meter would demand the answer to why weren't we shut down for COVID one through 18?"

Aughh! The stupidity! It burns!!!

Kellyanne Conway said the same thing back last April and immediately realized liberals would consider her to be stupid. She was right! COVID-19 is numbered what it is because that's the year it started.

The blogger reviews TFG's fascination with the fable of The Old Woman and the Snake. Yeah, agree that in this case, the Republican Party is the old woman and TFG (The Former Guy) is the snake.

Russian equipment being moved to border with Ukraine. not looking good!

Seriously, if Democrats are ever to find a Republican they can do business with, it'll be Representative Cheney or someone in the same mold.

A power outage at an Iranian nuclear plant resulted in an explosion (Iranians claim that there were no casualties and no leakage of radiation). Was this an example of Israeli sabotage?

Yeah, I think Biden is determined to return to the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran. I don't think the US Government was part of the sabotage at Natanz.

Media Matters

A Washington Post piece on April 5 began by noting, 'Opponents of Georgia’s new elections law call it a blatant attack on voting rights. … But Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R), who signed the bill into law last month, insists the opposite.

But true and real reporting that examines the actual effect of Georgia's new voting laws (as opposed to just a "he said, she said" like what the WaPo did above) shows that the law is very much a voter-suppression law. Our major media does a very poor job of explaining that.

Rachel Maddow has been arguing that Michigan should get a “surge” of extra vaccine.

Update (9 May): Looks as though Michigan is out of the woods, with number of new vaccinations going down, meaning everyone who wanted one, got one.

Yup! Pure, straight unadulterated racism! No excuse whatsoever for this kind of treatment.

Your rights when eing arrested.

2nd Lieutenant Caron Nazario said he was very concerned he might not survive the traffic stop in Virginia.

Good advice for businesses to follow if they want to maintain their earnings and stock value. They should act in a pro-democracy fashion and that doesn't mean just allowing their PR department to send out few tweets.

In the Minnsota police officer Derek Chauvin's trial for the murder of George Floyd, the idea that Floyd died from anything other than having a police officer's knee on his neck was completely taken apart.

Unfortunately, the "sham candidate" trick was entirely successful. A third party "liberal" candidate that no one had ever heard of would run for office against a Democratic candidate, thereby splitting the vote and allowing the Republican candidate to win. Those ghost candidates would never be heard from again.

Last year, officials from the last administration openly celebrated their forcing the CDC to change its scientific opinion in favor of their propaganda. Democrats are, thankfully, investigating this.

Very sad because it's absolutely crystal clear that there was no scientific justification for any of the revisions they made!

With Maggie Haberman's sources in the White House dried up with Trump's departure, it became clear that her reporting was 100% dependent on access.
My own memory is that when access really could have been useful, such as with the "kids in cages" episode, Haberman's access proved to be completely useless. I ran a search on "kids in cages haberman" and there were no results. She couldn't report on anything that Trump and his people didn't feel like letting her report on.

Too bad! Amazon voted not to unionize.

This is very, very good news! Republicans have finally moved off the dime and have admitted climate change is a real and serious problem! Their proposed solutions don't appear to be much, planting 2 trillion trees is a good start, but reducing the amount of carbon we put into the atmosphere is critical.
Still, it's a very good thing that they've abandoned the route of simple denial.

Thinkpiece on the WaPo and the whole concept of objectivity. My own preference in news coverage is for reporters to have clear, but acknowledged biases. I trust such writers far more than I do allegedly unbiased writers.

The safe level of carbon in the atmosphere is 350 ppm (parts per million). The addition of carbon slowed because of the pandemic, but we still got to 412.5 ppm last year.

Potentially quite serious. Could be Russia is just conducting exercises, but size of mobilization seems excessive for exercises.

The Congresswoman who's super enthusiastic about guns, Lauren Boebert, who claims to revere the Constitution, gets the date of the adoption of the Second Amendment wrong! First there was the Revolution (she used the initial year of that), then the Article of the Confederation (we had a libertarian government at that point), then the Constitution was written!

Update (6 May): Representative Boebert doesn't appear to grasp the distinction between private companies and the government. The First Amendment doesn't apply to a private company like Facebook. If they toss The Former Guy off of their platform, that's not a First Amendment problem.

I've always felt that having a fashionable face mask was a good way to encourage people to mask up and protect themselves. Wow! A $299 mask with built-in music/earphones? Ehh, okay! Let's do it!

Ah yes! I recall hearing about Muons. They just might be held together by a fifth fundamental force (After gravity, electromagnetic force and the strong and weak nuclear forces) that might explain things such as why galaxies appear to rotate faster than they should.

Republicans are suggesting that the Biden infrastructure plan could be about a tenth to a third of what Biden has recommended. Here's a direct answer to such under-bidding.

That’s my plan to rebuild what I refer to as the backbone of America, through the American Jobs Plan. It’s not a plan that tinkers around the edges, it’s a once in a generation investment in America. Unlike anything we’ve done since we built the interstate highway system and won the space race decades ago. It’s the single largest investment in American jobs since World War II. And it’s a plan that puts millions of Americans in the work to fix what’s broken in our country, tens of thousands of miles of roads and highways, thousands of bridges in desperate need of repair. But it also is a blueprint for infrastructure needed for tomorrow, not just yesterday, tomorrow. For American jobs, for American competitiveness.

People defending the Trump tax cut have two years they can point to that can show that the tax cut did some economic good for the country at large, that is, for the people who were not within the top 1% of all income earners. Unfortunately for everyone, there's zero evidence that any kind of economic boom, in hiring, in investment or in anything else occurred.

A major problem with interviewing Trump voters to see "what the nation thinks about Biden's plans" is that the voters they interview pretty much just regurgitate what they hear on Fox News. They don't have any way to critically examine what Laura Ingraham or Sean Hannity says, they just know that they trust these people to be straight with them. We might as well just read Media Matters or Crooks & Liars and get what Fox News is saying directly.

Interview with Representative AOC. In the last ten minutes of the video, she's clearly torn between the very high interest of Democratic constituents in seeing justice for Palestinians and the representatives of Israel living in her district.

The US position on Palestinians vs Israel is highly unsatisfactory and, IMHO, is highly likely to change. Not much reason for optimism at the moment yet.

"On the filibuster's future, Arizona's Sinema makes a flawed case" Democratic Senator Kyrsten Sinema does not have any sort of serous back-up plan in case her initial (wildly naďve) plan fails. Too bad for the Democratic Party because the failure of her current plan is quite certain.

"‘Vaccine Passports’ Are Emerging As The Latest Battle In GOP Culture Wars"
Yeah, never mind the fact that we've had to show that we've had our shots to go to foreign countries or for kids to attend schools or summer camp since forever.

Many years ago, someone on Saturday Night Live sang about how she wanted to be a slut. There are potentially good comedic reasons for her to want this, but she never stated any, so I just waited in vain for any sort of punch line. Same with Gutfeld claiming that he was giddy, just like Kamala Harris (And yes, I noticed he didn't say Vice-President Harris) discussing kids in cages. I'm like "What?" What is that supposed to mean? I guess if you're a right-winger, you'd get the reference, but a comedian is supposed to be able to make his jokes universally understood.

Good to see that the reporter on the piece really learned something here. No, Trump supporters were not motivated by economic anxiety, they weren't worrying about how to pay the bills. They were instead concerne about losing privileges. 

The China-Iran deal is signed!

"China firmly supports Iran in safeguarding its state sovereignty and national dignity,” Wang said during a meeting with Iranian President Hassan Rohani before calling on the United States to drop its sanctions against Tehran and “remove its long arm of jurisdictional measures that have been aimed at China, among others."

The real problem with Representative Gaetz showing off nude photos of women he claimed to have slept with was the apparent lack of pushback/condemnation by colleagues.

Gee, I wonder why Representative Gaetz would have sought a "blanket, pre-emptive pardon!" Hmm, let me think of all of the possible reasons why he'd want one of those...

Interesting statement. A group of anonymous women in the office of Representative Gaetz tell us that he's been a perfect gentleman. Which is nice, but the charge is that he's been showing photos of naked women to men on the floor of the House and has traded sex for monetary gifts, neither of which would have come to the attention of women in his office anyway!

The NY Times piece suggesting the Georgia voting law isn't all that bad. Actually, it's fundamentally flawed. Again, where were the editors on this? Why didn't they give this piece some rigorous thought before publishing it?

Particularly infuriating passage here justifying Georgia voting restrictions:

The law also makes it a misdemeanor to hand out food, drink or other benefits to voters waiting in long lines at polling stations. Biden criticized that move, but advocates say it is meant to discourage outside groups from influencing voters.

Y'know what? There's a very simple way to address that problem. Shorten the lines by providing more polling stations!!!

Comedian John Oliver makes the extremely good point that the size of the national debt is really pretty irrelevant. What really matters is what we've spent all of that borrowed money on!

Ah, here we go! I had seen a reference to the current First Lady's "scandalous" outfit. (She's wearing stockings with designs on them with a short skirt that starts just above the knees). The entry includes the former First Lady's truly scandalous outfit that said she "didn't care."

Kayleigh McEnany talks here about how much better the “freedom model” for dealing with the pandemic was so much better than the methods used by New York & California. Florida is number 4 in the country for deaths from COVID-19. In terms of deaths per 1 million, FL is 28 out of the 50 states. Considering that Florida had advance warning from NY & CA, that indicates that FL handled its coronavirus rather poorly.

Hoo boy! Not really clear what's happening between Russia and Ukraine, but military units are being moved from Siberia to the border between the counties.

Agree 100%! Can't imagine who thinks Mike Huckabee is funny.

Oh,, absolutely! It is very much in the interest of wealthy countries that everyone gets vaccinated!

Two companies that get donations from donors to politicians, ActBlue (Democrats) and WinRed (Republicans). ActBlue is a non-profit, which means they're strictly a pipeline for supporting candidates. WinRed is a for-profit, which means they have an incentive to get donor money. Gee, what a surprise! WinRed is a grifting operation!

Like the blogger, been around guns a lot, mostly in summer camp and then the Navy. Agree that a gun is a tool. Lots of comickal book characters have swords. Again, they're tools. They perform a function.

Serious questions about mandates and the popular will. When exactly can a president declare that he has a mandate?

I've taken criticism from further-left buddies who have said it's a waste of time trying to push the Democratic Party further to the left by working within it. Seems to me that the Progressive Caucus was a serious factor in keeping the first big bill intact at $1.9 trillion and our heroine Representative AOC is working to increase the American Jobs Plan (infrastructure) to be even bigger. But yes, I was n Britain back in the 70s and they said that both of our parties would run on the Conservative ticket in their country.

Comprehensive overview of the Representative Gaetz scandal, including why people like Roger Stone and other Congress-people may be sweating bullets right now.

When political opponents are so desperate to find something negative to say!
"POLITICO Playbook PM: How good news could complicate the Biden agenda"

Oh, that's right! QAnon, which has been working closely with Representative Gaetz on various issues, is supposedly, allegedly anti-pedophile. Huh! Funny how Gaetz was apparently sleeping with at least one underage woman this whole time and wow, y'know, somehow those sharp-eyed QAnon folks were completely oblivious to it!

Wow! So happy this guy is out of office and has such a difficult time getting published! [Lengthy list of grievances, followed by] "Other than that, Happy Easter!"

Good! Looks like plenty of impatience to get the 2015 Iran nuclear deal reinstated.

Someone asked why Representative Gaetz brags about his “popularity with women.” I recall that, in a scene from a Fast and Furious movie, one of the characters stands with a group of beautiful women and speaks of the great time they're all going to have. One of the women smilingly corrects him and speaks of the great time he is going to have. Left unspoken is that it's just going to be another Wednesday night for them. Women don't necessarily hate being hired for sex, but when you pay for it, it doesn't mean you have anything to brag about,

Big sea change! For 50 years, Democrats have tried to avoid being called big spenders. The country as a whole realizes now that spending a lot is necessary if we want to have a healthy society.

Republicans appear to be just left behind, out in the cold here. The ol' “tax-and-spend” accusation just doesn't have much zing left anymore.

Again, I'm very unclear as to how McConnell intends for an infrastructure bill to be financed. He says here he doesn't want to raise taxes and has said elsewhere he doesn't want to use deficit financing. And no, the economy was in mediocre shape before the pandemic hit.

Hmm, good point. Representative Gaetz has been showing naked photos of women he says he slept with. Maybe I'm just a puritanical kinda guy but wouldn't clothed pictures have been equally effective in making the point that Gaetz was gittin' some?

Very good question! What exactly is Senator Romney's idea of a constructive response to Biden's American Jobs Plan? The idea of austerity is an obvious DOA. Minority Leader McConnell doesn't like either raising taxes or deficit spending. So what's left?

Again, I really like this administration's Press Secretary! Psaki takes his question, throws it against the curb, steps on it and grinds it into the street.

Gee, I'm so surprised that Ivanka took a look at her daddy and said "Well, if he can do it, so can I," not realizing that, no he couldn't!

Problem with the NY Times and the For the People Act is that this bill is not like the endless Obamacare repeal bills that the Republican House passed around 50 times. The Rs and the Ds are two different parties with two different approaches to governing. Democrats aren't split, either. They've got one member who's not really clear on the concept and wants to bring Republicans along (Spoiler alert: Republicans will not go along!)

*Sigh!* Tucker Carlson of Fox News is desperately trying to gin up his audience about something! Allegedly, Canada is now establishing “internment camps.”

Very cool! Coke and other really big corporations are joining the pro-voting fight!

Yeah, corporations have come on board for the good fight, but it’s clear they’re not doing so for any principled reason. They’ve looked at the numbers and figured they were on the losing side. But yeah, it’s cool they’re on the right side now!


So, essentially what TLG (The Last Guy) is saying is that he doesn't believe in investing for the future. Let's not collect tax money now to improve our infrastructure, so... well then... what? Infrastructure will just magically appear out of nowhere? This is why TLG was such a failure as president!

Update (21 Apr): This isn't just TLG, this is a general problem with the entire Republican Party. They don't like Democratic infrastructure plans, but they don't have any serious, realistic counter-proposals.

So AG Bill Barr knew enough about the Gaetz case as to never be photographed together with him. Not, of course, enough to actually do anything, just enough to keep his distance.

Ahh! So pleasant to see terrible Trump policies crumpled up and tossed into the wastebasket like this! In this case former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo wanted to limit discussions of human rights to just things that conservatives disliked. Secretary of State Anthoy Blinken wants to discuss broader concerns.

"On voting restrictions, Florida seems eager to follow Georgia's lead"
The German writer Bertolt Brecht wrote a satirical poem about this called "Die Lösung" (The Solution), which was for the government to dissolve the people and to appoint another as the people "Had forfeited the confidence of the government."

Still not time to re-open yet, folks! Just hang in there a few more months!

For a lot of churches to have set themselves against LGBTQ people and to have allied themselves closely with a political party has benefited that one party in the short run, but may have seriously alienated youth from organized religion in general.

Representative Matt "Gaetz Implodes In Surreal Tucker Carlson Appearance"

There is no evidence to substantiate anything that Gaetz is saying. The interview left Carlson visibly perturbed as he tried to have Gaetz elaborate further, particularly after the Florida congressman repeatedly claimed that Carlson had been accused of sexual wrongdoing.

Grover Norquist, a long-time advocate for lower taxes, speaks up to oppose the "For The People" Act, saying that the left has "correctly decided that this is the way to disable the freedom movement."
He's talking about keeping donors to non-profits anonymous.
This is America and we're at peace! What the hell kind of "freedom movement" depends on secret donors?!?!?

Oh, Good Heavens! Why are people trying to rehabilitate the reputation of Stephen Miller?

Problem here is that it's not hypocrisy when you've changed your mind because the issue itself has changed. The filibuster is no longer treated the same as it was in the 20th Century because it has been so grossly abused.

Ah! Wasn't aware that it was Vietnam Veteran's Day yesterday (29 March, the day was established in 2017). A pair of singers, The Kennedys, very recently sang "Leaving on a Jet Plane" (1969). I heard that when it came out and recognized that it was a sad song, but didn't really grasp that it was about heading off to Vietnam where the protagonist would likely return in a flag-draped wooden box.

Grievance politics is deadly to real people. When Trump and his party scapegoated AAPI (Asian American and Pacific Islander) people, real people suffered from racist attacks.

Even Republican constituents like HR1! It’s just a genuinely popular bill. When people describe the provisions in an objective way, everybody likes it.

Big story on how TLG (The Last Guy) ignored any responsibility for the pandemic and we lost up to 400k people as a result.

Yep! By taking all the "credit" for all of the decisions concerning COVID-19, TLG (The Last Guy) makes it absolutely crystal clear that he's 100% to blame for the 400k excess deaths.

Good! After far too many years, Judicial Watch is just going to have to let go of "But her emails!" Big problem for the Supreme Court to approve of their request was that it was very clearly just a fishing expedition.

Oh, good grief! I had to LOL when Eric Trump said this:

"I don't even know where to begin," Trump replied. "It's heartbreaking to us. I saw how much time and effort my father put into the job."

Oh, puh-leeze!!! The elder Trump spent his time 1. watching TV 2. playing golf and 3. conducting rallies. Fourth and last was doing the actual work of the presidency!

Problem for Republicans is that calling the filibuster racist is a two-fer. 1. There's actually a good bit of historical evidence that the main beneficiaries of the filibuster ever since it was begun way back in the day has been racists and white supremacists. 2. It's clearly a Senate procedure that has long outlived any usefulness it might have once had.

Woo hoo! Nearly a third of Americans 65 & older have now been fully vaccinated!

The problem that led to the "Great Recession" in 2008 was the housing bubble that started under Clinton, but came to the attention of economists in 2002 and finally burst in late 2007. US economic problems that resulted in massive employment losses followed. Today, oil and gas and especially coal power plants are overpriced. We needed to start deflating that bubble a long time ago.

Just today I got an email from Republican Senator Pat Toomey about "The Democrats' $1.9 Trillion Monstrosity" and how the "bill is a colossal waste of taxpayer money full of radical left provisions," never mind that we're still in a pandemic and that there are still millions of people who are unemployed. And of course, Republicans never like it when people point out that the 2017 tax break was also $1.9 trillion!

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer mourns the death of Breonna Taylor one year later. I can understand how no-knock warrants can be useful under some circumstances, but they're inherently dangerous to those who serve them and so should be used with great caution.
Where does the racism come into play in this case? The fact that the police thought that a public servant (She was an EMT) had to be taken late at night and couldn't just be taken into custody in, say, the parking lot when leaving for the day.

Woo hoo! The Biden Administration just administered the 100 millionth shot!

"Why Biden is right to share credit with Pelosi, Schumer"
About the roles played by Speaker Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Schumer in producing the American Rescue Plan. Reminds me of the statement made by President Eisenhower, something to the effect of it was great for the three national leaders (Franklin Roosevelt, Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin) to dramatically hurl thunderbolts from Mount Olympus, but each thunderbolt meant at least a thousand hours of work by dedicated staff members.

Yeah, this is really seriously good stuff! Something to be celebrated. President Biden just said “...all states, tribes and territories…” and to Native Americans, that’s big! That means “Y’all are part of the great big group that constitutes America!”

Even Chris Wallace of Fox News is catching on that whether or not the deficit matters depends entirely on whether the President is a Democrat or a Republican.

The NY Times states that the former president:

...simply ran out of time and wasn’t able to get the pandemic job done — who worked hard to create an infrastructure for his Democratic successor.

This statement is very much in need of proof. Where were the editors who should have been demanding evidence? My suspicion is that the Times was practicing "access journalism," simply taking the word of its subjects that such and such was true. 
The rght-wing site Hot Air crowed that:

It’s not often that you see President Trump get credit for anything positive in the pages of the NY Times but it happened today.

Very happy to see that Tucker Carlson of Fox News took lots and lots of verbal abuse over his comment on women in the military!
More on that. And still more on that.

Having served alongside women throughout my Navy career (1991-2001), I don’t think Tucker Carlson has any idea what he’s talking about when it comes to masculinity and military effectiveness.

The Army’s most senior enlisted person doesn’t have any use for Carlson either.

Postmaster General DeJoy seems upset that he's regarded wit such hostility and suspicion, but really, I don't blame Congressional oversight people one bit! DeJoy has overseen disastrous slowdowns in service at exactly the point when we needed the service to be absolutely top-notch, in the months right before the 2020 election, when mail-in ballots were being transported.

I guess the notion that Representative Boebert is trying to get across is the old idea of "a good guy with a gun beats a bad guy with a gun." Did that ever actually work out in practice? I think there was a single instance in which a good guy came up after the shooting was over and took down the bad guy, but in well over 99% of all cases, the good guy was nowhere near the shooting or wasn't armed and ready at the time. So no, the whole theory is ridiculous.

Woo hoo! Merrick Garland is confirmed as the new AG! Now he can start cleaning up the mess that was left there! New HUD Secretary too. She will not have the slightest difficulty following the last sorry act in that office!

After playing Scarlet Witch in WandaVision, Elizabeth Olsen went on play the same character in Doctor Strange 2. She compares the two in a non-spoiler way. DS2 will show in March 2022.

The Covid relief bill is a good bill because Democrats finally just back-handed the austerity economics that we’ve been observing since the Reagan Administration was in office.

This is pretty sad. all of the Republicans, 100% of them, voted against the Covid relief bill, including this guy! Why is he talking up a bill that he voted against?

The NY Times in not anti- (small-d) democracy, but is clearly anti - (Capital-D) Democrats. They're trying to give credit to the Trump team that that team simply doesn't deserve. The Biden team was left with a good set of vaccines, so the Trump people deserve credit for that, but a distribution that was a complete mess.
More details on the same piece. Killer quote:

LaFraniere relies on exactly one Trump administration source to justify the premise of her article.

One of the big contrasts I noticed between the Obama stimulus bill and the Biden Covid relief bill is that the latest bill contains few to no tax breaks. That's because tax breaks help the wealthy far more than they do those with little or no income. Obviously, the Senate Republicans felt this was a flaw that required immediate correction!

Well, That's pretty cool! This is "a piece of carbonaceous chondrite which, at an estimated 4.5 billion years old..." That's roughly the age of the solar system. 

Yeesh! Yeah, we've looked into the so-called "Death Tax" before. The movement is totally a pro-wealthy one.

The US position appears to be that if Palestinians are abused by Israel, they effectively have no recourse as they don't have an independent state of their own. This is unacceptable.

More good document analysis from our blogger. Yeah, "Weiss can never find anyone to quote by name." It’s not at all clear why the allegedly-quoted person would have wished to remain anonymous.

Hmm. First Neera Tanden and now Vanita Gupta. *Sigh!* Yep, women of color with non-Anglo sounding names are getting the brunt of attacks. The other guys aren't even trying to hide their racism!

Update (25 Mar): Case of Gupta is complicated by her previous run-in with Texas Senator John Cornyn. 

Maria Bartolomo tries really hard to get her guest to join her in denouncing "cancel culture." I recall watching Monsieur LePew as a young'un and mostly remember women animals trying desperately to escape his grabby, "hand-sy" make-out style. It's easy to denounce cancel culture as long as you stick to broad, vague generalizations.

Erm, yeah. If the founder of Papa John's Pizza has to struggle to excise the N-word from his vocabulary, then the problem is a very deeply-rooted one. His struggle is over far more than just a word.

The blogger makes a lot of good points, but if the prisoner doesn't have a family to send the check to, I'm baffled as to what Dylan Roof would do with a $1,400 check! I can see that it would make for a good incentive to get out. Better to have some cash with you than to leave completely broke. But what is a prisoner going to do while in prison?

As far as the fourth reason here goes "Republicans effectively killed discussion of the deficit," I attended college in Washington DC for the last two years of Carter and first two of Reagan. I took talk of the deficit seriously for about the first half-year of Reagan's first term. I recognized the big, scary deficit was a boogeyman way back when!

Whoo-weee!!!! Major talks on Harry and Meghan (The Duke & Duchess of Sussex) today!

The centralized nature of petroleum production and burning it for power makes it a target in wartime. A wind/solar/battery combo can be very scalable, powering everything from a single household to a small town or section of a large town. Such a combination would be far less vulnerable to either natural disasters or to military attacks.

Biden is taking a lot of criticism from the right wing for the Covid relief bill. With comments like this, I'm very pleased that the bill was not a compromise! No cuts in what was needed and no tax breaks.
What was Senator Graham concerned about? Black farmers got the short end of the stick during the last stimulus/Covid relief bill.  The current bill compensates for that.

The governor of Mississippi subscribes to a false trade-off. There is the quite reasonable option of just paying people to stay at home for a few more weeks. Many, many countries have successfully done this. "Getting the economy moving again" is what we call an "unforced error."


Susan [Rice]’s office was formerly occupied by humanoid, Stephen Miller, known for his cruel, racist policies. Susan hung Haitian art on the walls, and burning sage to cleanse the bad juju.

Oh, good heavens! What is this, Day 5 of the Great Dr. Seuss book scandal? And this guy, a %^@$ing NY Times columnist, has no idea that the issue here is not censorship? Only governments can censor! Private entities may refuse to carry a product. That isn't censorship!

"Sen. Blackburn: Stopping Min. Wage Hike ‘Very Good Thing For The American People'"
I agree with the blogger. Exactly whch subsection of the American people are we talking about?

Republicans fought tooth and nail against three great liberal inititives, Clinton's first budget, the ACA/Obamacare and now Biden's Covid rescue plan. All three got unanimous GOP opposition and the first two were unquaified successes. Every indication is that the third one will be, too.

More good historical context to keep in mind.

Alicia Silverstone returns to the movies with a warning to us all to not try and colonize the ocean.

A professor of history, takes a look at the white supremacist/NeoNazi/QAnom view of the Byzantine Empire (A.D. 330 to 1453). They get quite a few things wrong about it, mostly that they seem to think it was a “whites-only” kind of state. Not at all. It was very multi-ethnic and had people with many skin colors. Curiously, some also see it as “the original Deep State.”

Senator Durbin 10:00am: "Let me be clear. Undocumented immigrants do not have social security numbers, and they do not qualify for stimulus relief checks, period!"

Senator Cruz 6:00pm: “Democrats Reject Republican Attempts To Prevent Stimulus Checks From Going To Prisoners, Illegal Aliens”

Cruz's comment about prisoners is accurate, about undocumented immigrants, nope!

Good explanation of the whole Gamestop/RobinHood problem and a warning that the stock market no longer serves the needs of the US as a whole.

Wow! Not saying the film clip here reminds me of Nazis burning books, but uh...wow! [Clip was of children burning masks]

This is pretty cool! A story on 100 million year old cells. Suspended animation is possible, but only for very simple organisms.

Woo hoo! The $1.9 trillion bill for Covid relief is passed!

With a unanimous Republican vote against the Covid relief bill, let's please all remember that 83% of the country supports it!

Press Secretary Jen Psaki took the whole “bipartisan” question and expertly turned it around to effectively say “Yeah, why are the Republicans the outliers?”

Dr. Fauci continues to warn that states like Texas are being hugely premature by opening up now.

Lengthy, interesting thinkpiece about why conservatives are not comedians.

Ooh! Ow! That's gonna leave a mark! Press Secretary Jen Psaki tells us how much use the Biden Administration had for advice from former president Trump about immigration!

Update (27 Mar): Biden: "I don't care what the other guy does."

BTW, Trump is miserable in his new role minus his Twitter megaphone!

Senator Cotton sneers at the Obama nuclear deal with Iran. Granted, in 2012, near the end of his first term, Iran wasn't talking to Obama either. But Obama had successfully gotten both Congress and countries like Russia and China to join him the effort to strike the deal.
Trump was nowhere near getting Iran to come to the table and begin talks. Very importantly, neither a single Democrat nor any countries besides Israel and Saudi Arabia were on board with Trump's plans.
Cotton's got nothing.

Update: (28 Mar): "China Signs 25-Year Deal With Iran in Challenge to the U.S."
Meaning no, Iran was not "on the verge" of collapsing and making a deal. China wasn't on Trump's side and has saved Iran's economy.

Did the Trump Administration leave any sort of vaccination plan that the Biden Administration could build on? There might have been a written plan on paper, but the  Press Secretary emphasized that the Trump people left a vaccination project that was short in all material aspects. The Biden people didn't have enough of anything when they arrived, so no. The vaccination set-up was far short of where it could have and should have been.

Anti-pregnancy choicers appear to have a hard time understanding this basic fact, that having a child requires a great deal more than just being forced to carry the results of sexual encounters all the way to term. It’s a problem of short-term interests vs the long-term good of all.

Rachel Maddow covered this on her show. Four cases, all investigated and substantiated enough to warrant a full criminal referral. Four cases, all of where they just said “Ehh, nevermind.”

Through the other party doing its best to bring the Senate to a halt, it’s become absolutely, positively crystal clear that the only possible way to pass things like the fix to the Voting Rights Act is to eliminate the filibuster!

Texas Governor Greg Abbot accuses the Biden Administration of flooding Texas with Covid-positive immigrants.
Translation: "I'm desperately afraid that people will demand that Texas adopt 'big government' solutions to our power grid and get us plugged in to the rest of the nation. I have to engage in hand-waving and 'Look over there' tactics!"

Yeah, Republicans offered a plan to address the economic effects of the coronavirus pandemic that involved a lot less spending, but Democrats rejected it. Because the need is great and obvious and we risk far less by spending more than we do by spending less. And seriously? People are going to quit work because they have an extra $1,400 in the bank? That wold cover my rent and utilities for a single month and I live in a pretty cheap apartment.        

Very disappointing that the Biden Administration opposes the International Criminal Court on the questions of Palestine and Israel.

Clearly, the former VP feels that he must toe the line on Trump’s many lies. Democrats are trying to fix a nearly decade-old decision by the Supreme Court (2013) that badly damaged the Voting Rights Act. Pence calls that “unconstitutional.”

Just as in 2009. moderates are if little or no use. Their role and function is essentially just to water down good bills for mysterious reasons. They’re far more of drag on the party then they are helpers.

As usual, GOP members demonstrate their commitment to small-d democracy by refusing to support the first major revision to the Voting Rights Act since 2013, when the Supreme Court gutted a major provision of it.

The CNN host here is just absolutely flabbergasted. Yeah, for the former president to have been vaccinated and to have not told anyone was...wow! The level of irresponsibility is just amazing.

There's absolutely no point in doing this. Reading out the entire 600+ page bill for Covid relef. This is obstruction simply for the sake of obstruction.

Yeah, I've found it highly suspicious that Michael Flynn's brother was involved in the attack on 6 January! Especially as people denied that he was involved.

The American Society of Civil Engineers estimates we need to spend $2.59 trillion in order to bring our infrastructure up to bare adequacy. $5.9 trillion over the next decade would be even better. Why do we need to make such massive outlays? Theories of austerity vs Keynesianism, but also since 2009, one of or political parties has put "party over country."

Even though Dolly Parton was an early financial contributor to the Moderna vaccine, she waited her turn to get the shot.

The Voting Rights Act (VRA) seems pretty safe after the Supreme Court hearing on it.

Senator Lindsey Graham adds: “This is [Trump’s] party. If you don’t get that, you missed a lot at [the Conservative Political Action Conference or CPAC].”

Rachel Maddow very rarely discusses her own ratings, but did so last night.

The Rachel Maddow Show averaged 3.54 million viewers
MSNBC said that this was the first time they have been #1 in all of cable for total day viewers, which is the
6AM-6AM time period,
In daytime (9 AM to 4 PM), MSNBC topped total viewers with an average of 1.53 million

"Budget nominee Neera Tanden withdraws nomination"
That's too bad. A survivable reversal, but it's annoying to have a nomination defeated because senators thought up a brand-new criteria (mean tweeting) that's never been applied before.

"How the press keeps playing dumb about sexism, racism"
Tanden's not only a bit brown-skinned, she's got what's clearly a non-Anglo name.

Tch, tch, tch! Telling the truth when it's actually very revealing!

At one point, Justice Amy Coney Barrett asked Michael Carvin, a lawyer representing the Arizona GOP, what the party's interest in maintaining the policy of discarding ballots cast at the wrong precinct was.
"It puts us at a competitive disadvantage relative to Democrats," he told Barrett. "Politics is a zero sum game."

"Cuomo made unwanted advance toward woman during 2019 wedding, witness says"

Yeah, someone suggested it would be difficult for Democrats to lose a politician like Cuomo. Nah, Senator Franken was an excellent politician who made good points and asked good questions and we tossed him overboard. Tossing Cuomo over the side is no problem.

Saw a concert by this singer a year ago. I wrote at the time that this might be my last such public event for a while.

Did the former president “learn his lesson” about inciting insurrections? Doesn’t sound like it.

Unfortunately, the last US president allowed the Yemen situation to deteriorate very badly. Hope it can be fixed.

Actually, news accounts made it 100% clear that Speaker Pelosi approved National Guard support for the Capitol immediately, as soon as it was requested.

Was there a “Republican model” for dealing with sexual harassment? Eh, sort of. There was indeed a hearing with Brett Kavanaugh’s accuser, but it was clear at the time that it was far from complete and that a more thorough investigation would most likely have concluded he was guilty.

Update (16 Mar): Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) has some questions about the investigation that was doe at the time, charging that it might have ben "fake."

NY Times columnist Maureen Dowd's main purpose in life, it seemed, was to oppose Hillary Clinton. Her latest "cause" now appears to be to defend a reporter who showed a senator a clip of a mean tweet from Neera Tanden from four years ago. Really? "Freedom of the press" has sunk to this level? No, this is not "freedom of the press!" Dowd has adopted a really stupid "cause!"

Biden is reviewing our global posture. He's decided Ukraine needs military aid.

The political right and left are not mirror images of each other. There are significant cultural differences between the two. Both President Biden and the last guy in office used the term "unity" in speeches, but Biden meant people respecting each other while working together towards common purposes. Trump meant everyone shouting the same slogans and despising the same enemies.

Plastic in the water is a serious problem that we should work on.

Yeah, I suspect that if Pete Hegseth ever actually went to a diner, he was probably disgusted by all of the peasants there.

An acconting of the value of resources poured into Afghanistan up until 2008 and what their status is now.

Bleaugh! We've currently got about 10 million tons of plastic in the oceans!

About all we need to know about this letter is that Representatives Louie Gohmert and Marjorie Taylor Greene have signed onto it. I’m sure Speaker Pelosi examined it for about two seconds before assigning it to a minion.

People that CPAC approves of. Wow! Governors Ron DeSantis and Kristi Noem both oversaw absolutely disastrous COVID-19 losses of life. Don Jr. makes sense. Mike Pence should be completely and utterly humiliated. All that bowing and scraping and humiliating himself and nearly getting killed by a mob and he gets rewarded with 1% approval?!?!?! Sad!


Now this is how to report! Our people demonstrates the "truth sandwich" method!

Governor Kristi Noem of South Dakota tries at first to engage in "whataboutism" and then attempts to pretend that SD took a responsible approach to the Sturgis motorcycle rally over the summer. "Our state peaked earlier than other states." Yeah, which means her management was irresponsible.

"Don Jr. Wants To Back Primary Challenges Against GOPers Who Dissed His Dad"
Of course he does! Loyalty is all that matters!

1898, the first known on-screen kiss!

Very true! Just because Fox News is strongly right-wing, doesn't mean the rest of the media is left-wing. The sides are asymmetrical. Whose fault is it that people don't understand that? Maybe because the media presents all conflicts as though they occur between two symmetrical sides?

The Tea Party thought they had made great progress back in 2010 by demonizing legislative earmarks. Turns out, earmarks are good for party discipline so they're coming back!

Deepthink piece on what the GOP will be running against for the next four years. Opposing Keynesianism appears to be a dead issue.

The House has passed their portion of the $1.9 trillion Covid relief bill!

Update (6 Mar): Senate passes its part! Bill to be signed next week! The country supported the bill by 83%, but no, not a single Republican vote for either portion!

From the piece:

[Representative] Greene presented herself as a down-to-earth alternative, an average mom / businesswoman / Christian / conservative / patriot who wanted change and didn’t believe in kowtowing to decorum. But nothing says assimilating into the primordial goo of The Swamp quite like bumping elbows with lobbyists and rich donors at the Capitol Hill Club.

Examining the Yemen war and possible solutions. Doesn't look promising.

Here's what I'm talkin' 'bout! Years ago, the other guy put out a photo of himself "working" (he had his hat on, nothing but a phone on his desk), it looked as though he was telling his minions to warm up the helicopter so he could take off for the golf course. Here, with several communication devices on her desk and an aide to assist her, it appears as though the VP is, y'know, actually working!

For a failed, one-term president who didn't accomplish much of anything, it's really peculiar how his party has reacted. Ordinarily, people like Trump would slink off, never to be heard from again.

"'Do Not Book Liars On The Air': Soledad O'Brien Calls Out Lou Dobbs"
Soledad O'Brien speaks much more to media outlets than she does to government, but her advice is very, very good!

An example of what she's talking about.

"Dinesh D'Souza Claims There Was No Insurrection At US Capitol"
D'Souza makes lots of money even though he doesn't need to do any actual research. He just makes shit up and puts t out.

So Don Jr. takes a real "(eff) democracy" point of view. Even if you lose decisively, you should still be able to contest election results.

Donald Trump Jr. says that Republicans would "rather lose gracefully" but his dad has "shown that you don't have to do that -- you can actually push back."

Trump was required to produce a report on the murder of Jamal Khashoggi. By his hiding the report, that  appears to indicate awareness of guilt.

At the CPAC conference: "Whuuh? Who is this 'Moses' you speak of? What are these references to 'golden calf' all about?"

CPAC had a gold statue of the last president tha attracted lots of attention as it reminded people of the golden calf that Moses destroyed.

Some concerns about that.

So I'm following the live-blogging of the former president's speech at CPAC. Only real news so far is that Trump does not wish to start up a third party. Oh, and the guy who provoked a riot less than two months earlier "Defines Trumpism As ‘No Riots’"

Detailed explanation of the airstrike last night. If we're not willing to go all-in, then maybe we shouldn't go in at all. That was the problem with the 1970s, post-Vietnam battle over Angola. The CIA had people in that country, but when Russia sent Cuban troops in, the US couldn't respond. It would have been better for all concerned if the US had simply stayed out to begin with.

Very powerful point about how people use God to justify all manner of hurtful, terrible things.

Heh! Pretty cool, this is a "selfie station" where you can take your picture to document that you got your vaccination shot!

Meghan McCain thinks she's caught Press Secretary Jen Psaki in a "gotcha" question, but it's clear McCain really didn't think the situation through.

From the time Saudi Arabia was organized in 1930 until Mohammed Bin Salman took over in 2015, that country had not launched a single war. Under MBS, it's invaded three of its neighbors. Good luck dealing with him!

Pretty amazing that Representative Liz Cheney is turning out to be the great liberal hero of the moment here! Seems that if the Republican Party splits into two, she'll be, if not in charge of the more rational and traditional portion, then at least a very high-ranking person within it.

Whoa!!! This is SO cool! An un-tethered space walk! An astronaut flew for a little while independently of his spacecraft, no physical connection!

Amazing to hear a senator be so economically illiterate. Not only has the economy changed from way back when (Yes, you could buy a house and raise a family on a single income back then), but he completely neglects that higher wages create more consumer demand, which in turn creates and sustains more jobs.

Heh! Good! President Biden appoints three members to the Postal Board of Governors while Postmaster General DeJoy is testifying!

The website Indian Country Today is very interested in the Representative Deb Haaland hearing. I saw a comment yesterday that the Congresspeople who vote against her confirmation will be remembered for decades!

I especially like the third point here. Does a story always have two equally legitimate sides? Does every conflict have sympathetic figures on both sides or do you have conflicts where one side is clearly right and the other side is obviously wrong? There are such things as one-sided conflicts! The media is astonishingly bad at covering such conflicts.

Donald Trump’s accusation of voter fraud robbing him of a second term is completely and utterly without merit, but Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas supports that accusation anyway.

President challenges conservatives to identify cuts. Laura Ingraham obliges. Many of her proposed cuts are, of course, completely insane and would make the economy worse.

Well, that's cool! 5,300 sea turtles were rescued after being stunned by the cold snap in Texas. Many have now been returned to the sea!

Captain Carneysha Mendoza of the Capitol Police gives us a heartbreaking description of the 1-6 attack on the Capitol. In the next frame down, we see Senator Cruz texting on his phone because, I dunno, the testimony just wasn’t exciting enough?

Fixing up the Texas energy situation calls for serious policy discussions. Too bad Republicans are now a post-policy party.

Rememberance for half a million dead from COVID-19.

Is Senator Romney’s position on Neera Tanden and rude tweets some brand new standard that was just invented for her?

Rick Grennel and Neera Tanden both put out mean tweets. Grennell's were considerably ruder than Tanden's were. Senator Manchin voted for Grennell but against Tanden.

Hmm, this might be why Senator Manchin opposed Neera Tanden so much.

Senator Manchin continues to hold arbitrary and capricious views. He had zero problems with voting to confirm Jeff Sessions, but has problems with Representative Deb Haaland.

The sheer bad faith here is just amazing. Tweets from Neera Tanden cause senators to call for the smelling salts and fainting couches, but tweets that were much worse from Trump “Ehh, no biggie,”

"Mike Huckabee: Trump Should Open CPAC With 'Y'All Miss Me Yet?'"
Eh, if you're a hard-line right-winger, you miss Trump being the President. not if you're just about anyone else, though.

Woo hoo! Ever since President Nixon (Even that guy!) released all of his tax returns, all of our presidents have followed suit. The Supreme Court has now agreed that Trump had no legitimate reason to hide his.

Update (25 Feb): Trump's taxes handed over to Manhattan prosecutor.

The 1st Benghazi investigation was concluded in early 2014, nothing meaningful was ever added to it, but the GOP insisted on having still more investigations until 2016. Now the GOP is insisting that the 6 January invasion and occupation of the Capitol was, golly gee willikers, a whole month ago, man!

Rather stupid question: "How has about Joe Biden's response to the pandemic been different than Trump's?"

Hasn't shrugged off federal role in vaccine distribution; invoked DPA for PPE; doesn't constantly lie about there being nothing to fear about the virus.

Senator Cruz is allegedly cutting a brisket here. Mm-hmm. Dry gloves, no apron, clothes that are completely clean. Ri-i-ight!

One of the statements here that absolutely baffles me is that around the 2:30 mark, Kudlow complains that Biden wants to abandon the nuclear policy of Trump and wants to revive the 2015 deal that Obama had negotiated. But the policy of Trump achieved absolutely nothing! The Obama deal was a substantive step ahead.

I don't usually have much use for CNN's Dana Bash, but she's 100% correct here. Texas politicians have been banging the drums to not give aid to states that suffer from natural disasters, but are extremely quick to hold out their hands for a freebie when they're in trouble!
It'd be nice if they admited that the disaster they just suffered was their fault! This was the entirely predictable effect of de-regulating their energy market.

Several legislators are interviewed. Texas had a major problem with its electrical grid in 2011, they had some discussions, people filed bills, but the legislature pretty much just went back to sleep and nothing was done.

The death toll from the storm and the breakdown of the grid is 32.

Senator Kennedy whitewashes Limbaugh and paints him as way more decent than he actually was.

As the GOP has apparently decided that "Well, we can't win by appealing to people. Hmm, better try suppressing Democratic voters instead!"

"Fox's Pathetic Guy Benson Spins Texas GOP Disaster Into Biden's Hurricane Katrina"
One of the recurring questions in this conversation is: "Why was the federal government so slow to react?" Unlike Hurricane Katrina, where weather reports and the Louisiana Governor both delivered ample warning that the hurricane was about to hit, no one thought that Texas would suffer the disaster that it did. There couldn't be any preparation because it had been ten years since the last such, much less serious, breakdown of the state's electrical system had occurred and the general assumption was that Texas had fixed the problem. Oops!

Ol' Franklin's right here! Biden and the Democrats are trying to undo everything Trump did! And a damn good thing that is! What Trump did was horrible and it all needs to be undone!

The lights are back on in Texas and are likely to stay that way, but Texans face a number of serious problems, from water pipes that cracked because of the freezing water in them and that are now leaking to power bills from unregulated floating prices. In years past, this was a great deal. Not so much anymore.

Ugh! I knew we were rapidly approaching the half-million mark in coronavirus deaths. We're now there.

Looks like Senator Manchin is anxious to be the next Joe $%#@ing Lieberman!!!
I thought the lesson of 2009 had been learned. Do not make unilateral concessions! You get into a lose-lose situation that way!

On The View, Meghan McCain wonders why we don't treat Speaker Pelosi getting a haircut while she should have been quarantined as equivalent to Senator Cruz running off to Cancun. Well, perhaps because Pelosi wasn't abandoning a situation where, as someone put it, they had to deal with "Food shortages. Unsafe drinking water. Impassable roads. Flooded homes. A humanitarian crisis."

Yeah, I think the drop in Covid cases has a great deal to do with having a president who doesn't deny the problem, doesn't take a "freedom!" attitude towards social distancing and sets a good example by wearing a mask.
Yes, there may be other factors involved.

The new Mars rover, Perseverance, is already producing photos of the Martian landscape.

So it looks as though Texas Senator Ted Cruz is taking a bit of heat for abandoning his state while it's undergoing a full-scale crisis. Good!

Cruz throws his daughters "under the bus" by explaining his abandonment of his state during a power crisis was so the he "planned the holiday for his daughters, 'wanting to be a good dad.'"

Here's the context of Cruz's little vacation.

But hey, Ted Cruz is just a senator. What on earth could a senator have done to mitigate a disaster? Hmm, I wonder...

Tweet from Representative AOC:

We officially raised $1 million for Texas relief at 9:17pm.
Thank you all so much.
🙏🏽 I’m at a loss for words. Always in awe of movement work.
💯 % of this relief is going straight to Texan food assistance, homelessness relief, elder care, and more.

As of 21 February, she raised nearly $5 million.

Unfortunately, delay has been an extremely effective Trump strategy for defeating Congressional oversight.

Wow! Texans should put up with no power in below-zero weather in order to keep federal regulators out? There is no way I would even consider making that sort of sacrifice!

The problem with the Texas power grid isn’t complicated. It’s libertarianism and the ideology of small government. It’s the idea that big government is a problem, when big government is exactly what Texas needs right now. A big government can engage in advanced contingency planning and can anticipate problems and can spend to avoid them.

Good thread. "governing by crisis and spectacle” and “They create a show. They do battle with enemies.” And also: “Made-up enemies are safest. The next best are powerless enemies. That's why Trump picked homeless migrants as enemies.”

Heh! How some Texan "prepprs" and "survivalists" are doing in Texas right now. Hint: Not very well as they were depending on having some sort of electrical power! 

Don Lemon of CNN makes a lot of really good points here. Yeah, Senator Johnson may not be aware that he's a white supremacist, but that doesn't mean he isn't.

Rush Limbaugh dies.

Funeral dirge for Rush Limbaaugh.

And yes - "I have never killed any one, but I have read some obituary notices with great satisfaction."

"Rush Limbaugh sold listeners a false reality — and we’re all still paying for it"

Was Rush Limbaugh “transformative” to media? Sure, but not in a way that anybody should brag about or commemorate.

Yeah, looking at the collapse of the power grid in Texas, I recall many pieces written over the years about "failed states" and how the US, "the world's policeman," should get in there and fix thing up.

Quickie set of points on what's been going on in Texas.

Right-wingers trying desperately to discredit green energy in the wake of the Texas disaster. Right-wingers gleefully show German solar panels covered in snow, as though Germany didn't have other power sources during the winter.

This strikes me as a very good framework within which to interpret the last two decades. Republicans have taken five big gambles, all of which appeared to have been grand successes at the beginning, but all have which ended disastrously and at great expense to the US.

"Varney Blames Bernie Sanders And AOC For Texas Power Outages"
My advice on power generation back during the power outage in Puerto Rico (The power stations were fine, but Hurricane Maria had taken down all the power lines) was that exurban power should be generated by combined packages of wind, solar and battery power. That would provide steady power through pretty much all weather conditions.

Never occurred to me that windmills could freeze (See the note at the bottom of this piece - "Or [Texas] could have planned ahead, made sure our wind turbines had cold weather packages"), but I think the analysis still holds up. Battery and, eventually solar power would have provided reduced power but they would have had something.

A deep dive into Texas power generation. Among other things, it points out that coal and natural gas are also limited by cold weather!

People in New Orleans are celebrating Mardi Gras anyway, dang it!

By and large, the Republican Party, the constituents, governors and mayors, agree with the Biden Covid relief package. It’s just senators and representatives that disagree.

More details on Speaker Pelosi’s proposed 9/11-style commission on 1/6.

Yeah, in the most technical sense, the Trump Administration did indeed have a vaccination "plan," but yes, the Biden Administration had to "start from scratch" because the "plan" was grossly inadequate.

Senator Rand Paul disparages the wearing of masks, saying effectively: "Hey, all of the senators are vaccinated, so what's the point?" Obviously, it never occurred to him to set a good example.
He cites a Stanford study saying mask-wearing is useless. I ran a search "stanford mask wearing" and the first result talks about how the better the materials you use, the more effective a mask is. So I'm not at all clear that he either read the study properly or remembers it accurately.

I gotta hand it to this woman! CBS reporter Lana Zak just demonstrates incredible patience in the face of a complete jackass who has no idea how to conduct himself!
And yes, his explanation of how evidence was "doctored" is very underwhelming.

Why weren't there witnesses in the impeachment tral? Good set of reasons. Numbers 4 & 5 are especially compelling.

Did the Democrats prove their case? A very convincing case that they did, based on what the defense counsel refused to answer.

There are powerful arguments to not "move on" and to not treat a law-breaking former president leniently!

Just because I knew everyone was wondering, here are the senators who voted to remove Clinton from office, But also voted to acquit Trump. In other words, lying about a blowjob was important to them, but causing the Capitol to be overrun for the first time in over 200 years was no biggie.

Neil Cavuto of Fox News asks an important question:

“Senator, I'm sorry I wasn't clear” Cavuto pressed. “I know what you're saying about did he instigate it, but in the middle of it all when it was [g]oing on, he did nothing to stop it. Would that add a level of doubt to your views here that the president could have gotten this under control but if this conversation is true, he did nothing to do so?”

The senator responded with a lot of "whataboutism" and misdirection.

Statements on Trump's second impeachment by Speaker Pelosi and President Biden. .

Senate Minority Leader McConnell earns a grade of "pathetic" from Speaker Pelosi after condemning Trump, bascially undercutting his own vote to acquit.

Update (28 Feb): McConnell says he'll support Trump runnng again in 2024.

I've dealt with the end of the trial here as the situation was fairly complicated. The final vote was 57 guilty, 43 innocent. As 67 votes were needed to convict, Trump walked.

"Auditor says Trump admin. knew ‘zero-tolerance’ would separate children from parents at border"

But many Republicans on the committee were like Rep. Andy Biggs, R-Gilbert, who defended the policy, saying that adults who crossed the border illegally had committed a crime and should be punished.

Yeah, but appropriateness? Proportionality? Taking children from their parents, in many cases permanently, reminds us of the Belgian Congo, where colonists would chop off the hands of people who wouldn't work hard enough.

Representative and one of the impeachment managers Stacey Plaskett takes note of the demographics of the people that were featured in the videos presented by the defense council.

*Sigh!* Yeah, Don Jr. complains that Democrats treat the BLM response to the horrific murder of George Floyd and the 6 January attack on the Capitol are apples and oranges, like they're two completely separate events that have nothing in common. Ya know why that is? Yeah! Because the comparison is apples and oranges! '

Daily Kos is live-blogging the impeachment trial. Good point here;

This incredible montage of Democrats saying the word “fight,” shorn of all context, might mean something … if any of these Democrats’ supporters had stormed the Capitol. Which they did not.

Again, there isn’t the slightest question that the President knew full well what was going on and dd nothing to stop it.

Chris Wallace of Fox News is not at all impressed with the defense of Donald Trump.

During the former president's last month in office, he complained that the First Lady had never gotten a photo feature in a magazine. Well, to do that, a magazine needs an extensive interview to go with the photos.
This is a clear exhibit as to why there was never an extensive interview during the four years that Mrs. Trump occupied the White House.

The tape potentially connects Melania to inauguration crimes, according to Meidas Touch. Melania also references Mark Burnett, the Celebrity Apprentice producer who is said to hold a lot of incriminating tapes of Trump.

Israel has illegal settlements all over the Palestinian West Bank. The UN has identified the 112 companies that do business with them.

Well, that's pretty cool! Released from a Saudi prison after over 1k days. Happy to note that she looks unbowed and unbroken!

The prominent Saudi Arabian women’s rights activist Loujain al-Hathloul has been released, but authorities can "return her to prison at any time for any perceived criminal activity." So when the heat's off, she'll be back in jail.

How does Donald Trump feel about political violence? Let's roll the tape and find out! Hmm, he apears to think violence is okay if it's carried out by his side. See "Knock the crap out of 'em!" The fourth video down.

Republican senator tries to draw a parallel between BLM protests in the summer and 6 January. Nope. Apples and oranges.

Huh! Interesting.

“It’s continuing to open wounds for the American public and it is something that President Trump has condemned in no uncertain terms — the terrible violence that went on there."

I'm sorry, remind me please! When did the former president condemn the violence on 6 January?!?!?! Oh yeah, that's right, he read out a speech that someone else had written for him! As far as I know, that's the only time he condemned the violence then!

During the former president's second impeachment trial, Trey Gowdy cuts to the heart of the matter:

"What's not split is the president's lawyers need to come up with a factual defense for what was he doing once he learned the siege began."

Did they ever come up with one? Actually, no. They never did.

Ahh, normal politicians doing public-spirited thing! The First Lady and Second Gentleman
make phone calls to nurses to discuss COVID-19 concerns.

Are Trump fans in actual financial need or do they just think they're in financial need because they're engaged in a status race with each other?

Not only is President Biden more popular than Trump ever was, his first bill is already more popular than anything Trump ever passed!

Hmm. Larry Flynt dies. Historically important. Hustler was never to my taste. He did win a free speech case against Jerry Falwell where the "accusation" against Falwell was so outlandish as to be obviously a joke.

This is distressing as I'm very familiar with both the work of Joss Whedon and Charisma Carpenter. Whedon is reputed to have been very abusive of many of his actors.

This is very sad. Wealthy and healthy white folks who could very easily wait are jumping into line at neighborhoods they ordinarily would never go into in order to get the vaccine early. Selfish of them because the people who live there need it more urgently than the line-jumpers do.

The United Arab Emirates is now the fifth country to have placed a satellite into orbit. The Deputy Project Director is Her Excellency Sarah bint Yousef Al Amiri. Yep, princesses don't just sit around drinking tea all day!

Former President Trump shouldn't be too upset as a big chunk of the Senate voted for a clearly nonsensical theory that doesn't stand up to even a casual examination. This theory is what House impeachment manager Representative Jamie Raskin (D-MD) calls the "January exception," the idea that in an incumbent's last January in office, he gets a "free throw" (basketball) or "free kick" (soccer). This is, of course, a completely insane theory.

So after the lead Democratic impeachment manager described the completely insane theory of the "January exception," a Republican senator adopts precisely that theory!

Senator Mike Lee of Utah, a conservative Republican, suggested on Tuesday that former President Donald J. Trump be given a "mulligan" for exhorting an angry gathering of supporters to march on the Capitol on Jan. 6.

Very sad to see that Republican senators have made up their minds and that nothing will change them. They want to award Trump his "mulligan" as though he was simply being rude rather than murderous on 6 January.

Blogger makes a very serious, in-depth comparison between the Mahdi Army in Iraq and today's Republican Party.

Senator Rob Portman is very upset with Neera Tanden’s language she’s used to (accurately) describe various Republican senators. Funny, when he was asked about tweets by the former President, gee, it seems somehow he never managed to see them before he was interviewed! Funny how that kept happening!

Yeah, this is an immensely important context
whenever anyone tries to bring up impeaching Trump after he’s left office.

Mitch McConnell just voted (again) that the this trial is unconstitutional, which is rich because he’s the one who stopped the trial from beginning while Trump was still president.

If you ever run across "I'm not a cat!" this is where the phrase comes from. Poor fellow was making a legal brief and his child was using the computer beforehand, so he appeared as a cat! The other people on the Zoom call understood.

Wow, the Trump lawyers get horrible reviews from all across the political spectrum! Everybody hated these guys!

Heh! Uh yeah, the RNC Chairperson who saw the Republican Party engage in an extreme lurch to the right and whose people routinely violated the Hatch Act is now deeply concerned about partisanship on the other side!

We're really not clear as to who was behind the cyber-attack on the Oldsmar water treatment plant in Florida. It wasn't necessarily an organized or directed attack at all. But it is quite serious and deserves a lot of attention.

Former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows alleges that the former President Trump offered more National Guard troops to Washington DC during the summer. Why this would be relevant, even if it were true, is far from clear. As the blogger points out, those troops were needed on 6 January and the federal government refused to release them at that time.

I knew a lot of this, but yeah, the comedian Amber Ruffin makes a powerful case that history is not being taught correctly.

A preview of the arguments of various Republican senators. A real problem with disallowing busting someone who’s out of office due to his term having expired. If the off-going President commits impeachable acts during his last few days in office, doesn’t that theory give him a free pass to do whatever he pleases? Sorry, but even if the Founding fathers left that loophole in the law, we should close it!

Ah yes, the 2020's version of Joe $%#@ing Lieberman! Lieberman was a plague on the aughts (2000-2009) Democratic Party. *SIgh!* Looks like Senator Manchin likes that role.

Wow! What the hell is this guy smokin'? Maria Bartolomo is hopelessly gullible, just saying "Wow!" as Navarro spins tall tales.
Now, first off, the idea that Bill Barr's Justice Department slow-walked 30 Executive Orders by Trump is entirely believable. At best, Biden would have had to do some extra paperwork to cancel them all. But the idea that Biden had to clear his EOs through Trump's Justice Department?!?!?! Whaaa?!?! That's where Navarro is clearly doin' lots of reefer!

I absolutely, positively 100% approve of Treasury Secretary Janet Yellin's priorities! Her priority is to fix the problem as opposed to stinting on the money!

The International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) has come up with a really terrible definition of antisemitism that deliberately confuses opposition to the existence of the Jewish people to criticism of the policies of the state of Israel. This is a serious battle that critics of Israel are fighting.

The blogger demolishes the argument that Democrats will look just as bad as Trump does if they dug up videos of Democrats saying awful things about the former president. Hearing the lawyer speak, he brings up an argument that was addressed and settled during Trump’s first impeachment. The argument is that a specific crime needs to have occurred. In lawyer-speak, “The question was asked and answered.” Brookings examines the argument.

Yeah, the problem, as I’ve pointed out concerning Ivanka Trump and others, is that we only have the word of completely unreliable narrators who, as they say, “have a dog in that fight.”

Wow! Seriously? Really? Those are the best arguments against impeachment she can come up with?!?!?!

“No one really wants to see a continued impeachment going on.”
“The country really needs to move on from this moment.”

A detailed examination of the complete and utter cluster%$@# known as Operation Warp Speed. Actually, the part where they prodiced the vaccine was well done. It was the "last mile" when they had to get it distributed to people that they completely screwed it up.
Good quote from the story.

Doing good on vaccinations, up to having administered 11.7 doses per 100 people.

D’oh! Lou Dobbs got abruptly canceled when a multi-billion dollar lawsuit threatened Fox Business News. One of the casualties was the former President’s lawyer, who was going to start making a public case for his client.

An iceberg that broke off from Antarctica in 2017 was initially about twice the square mileage of Delaware.

Through the last several US presidential terms, Israel has been flooding their own settlers into the occupied Palestinian territories. The UN has finally declared this to violate international law. The ideas of “Two State Solution” and “peace process” are both dead.

Donald Trump Should Not Receive Intelligence Briefings Because Of His “Erratic Behavior,” Joe Biden Tells CBS News’ Norah O’Donnell
I agree with this. The chances of Trump selling information to the Russians or to do other mischief is very, very high!

Interesting. The 6 January rally was supposed to be just a rally, not a march. By directing people to march to the Capitol, Trump was violating the terms of the Park Service contract.

The economist Larry Summers has written that he fears excess stimulus. This is a silly thing to worry about. The dangers of under-stimulating are quite real and worth worrying about.

Tomi Lahren doesn't seem to grasp that the world is not the simple place she knew as a kindergartner. Democrats cannot take a simple, straightforward approach to law enforcement because there is police brutality as well as heroes like Officer Sicknick.

Doing a bit better. Daily new cases of Covid are dropping.

It’s instructive to read this piece first and then to watch the second one to note that Representative Jordan stays well away from discussing any of the specifics of the Representative Greene case.

Being unable to defend Representative Greene, Senator Graham turns to "whataboutism" and not by coincidence, against the Black person who's our current Vice President.

Representative Greene says: "I was allowed to believe things that weren’t true." So she then takes no responsibility for her actions and suggests she's just as vulnerable to QAnon lies as she was before.

The good news is that Representative Greene was removed from all of her committees. The bad news is that she's still in Congress. As Joy Reid points out, is that Republicans own her!

As to the "free speech" argument made for Trump's 6 January speech right before the Capitol was attacked, my own legal analysis (I’m not a lawyer) on this assertion is that yelling “fire” in a crowded theater when there’s no fire amounts to what I’d call a “public safety exception” to free speech. When a politician incites violence, that would fall under the same exception.

Asha Rangappa (Who is a lawyer) talks about the legality of Trump's speech immediately prior to the invasion of the Capitol. No, it doesn't fall under "free speech," but under something more like employment law. 

"With clean sweep, Biden's Pentagon chief clears out Trump picks"
Seems the big reason that Trump wanted to place loyalists on Pentagon advisory boards is that such members have access to highly classified information. Biden Administration has said "Nuh-uh!" and has closed down ALL such boards!

Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick was honored yesterday by being featured in the Capitol Rotunda.

Update (27 Feb): A suspect has been identified in Sicknick's death. The suspect directed bear spray into Sicknick's face during the 6 January attack on the Capitol. 

Trump generally stayed within five points of a 40% approval rating his entire term and never once broke the 50% mark. Biden’s already up to roughly a 54% approval !

I’m convinced Trump would have lost anyway due to a fundamental lack of competence. He never had a grasp of how to do anything.

Alexey Navalny addressed the court.

NBC claims Pete Buttigieg is the first openly gay cabinet member. Megyn Kelly says not so, Richard Grenell was openly gay. Problem is that Grenell was "Acting" DNI. He was neither nominated nor confirmed to be an actual cabinet member.

An analysis from someone who's looked at both of the impeachment briefs. Sounds pretty open-and-shut and that the former president is guilty.

Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene is a really tough problem for House Republicans to solve.

Exactly! The defense of "it happened before she was elected" would be compelling if the same types of accusations weren't leveled against Bill Clinton!

Basically, the R Party has to choose between Representatives Liz Cheney and Marjorie Greene. Their tent can't be big enough to house both.

Very sad! The House Minority Leader, by refusing to choose between Cheney and Greene, completely fails!

House Minority Leader McCarthy has decided to keep both Representatives Liz Cheney (evil, but sane) and Marjorie Greene (evil and complete fruitcake). This is a temporary solution as the House will vote later.

President Biden properly and respectfully hears the proposal put forward by Republican senators (Was it a “bipartisan” proposal? No, it didn’t have any input from Democrats or from the rest of the Republican caucus.) and happily, there’s no indication that anyone in the Democratic caucus is prepared to reduce the size of the Covid rescue package.

Got PA Senator Pat Toomey’s newsletter and he whines about

These unilateral, partisan actions to unwind the work of the previous administration create an unpredictable regulatory environment that undermines any economic recovery while dividing us even further.

In other words, Toomey was clearly not part of the Republican “peacemakers.”

Biden Administration has been disappointing on Palestinians/Israel, but the war on Yeman has been a humanitarian catastrophe The US needs to act to end it and it appears they will.

Update (27 Feb): Hoo boy, is this a complex problem!

Republican Party could very well be headed for a break-up. The Dems are already pretty much the only grown-up in the room.

Because the last President just didn't feel like/wasn't in the mood to collect accurate COVID-19 data, we have to depend on volunteers who were going the job for free.

Senator Ted Cruz talks about "Things the Senate should be focusing on instead of Democrats’ impeachment:" and then lists a number of good things. Okay. And what were you guys doing between about April and October of 2020? As I recall, the Republican Party was basically just sitting around and twiddling its thumbs! Democrats passed a really big bill and the GOP didn’t even take it up until half a year later.

Good thread about Meghan McCain having a baby and realizing that the US needs paid maternity leave because it wasn’t really a problem until it happened to her!

It's a rather stupid idea to give Jared Kushner and others a Nobel Peace Prize for “making peace” between Israel and “the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco and Sudan.” Why is it stupid? Because Israel was never at war with any of these countries in the first place!


It's hard to imagine a newsroom surveying the current political landscape and deciding the chairman of the RNC, who has overseen the party's loss of the White House, House, and Senate, as well as a murderous Republican mob that ransacked the U.S. Capitol, as being someone who's riding a real hot streak.

Also, did Ronna McDaniel push back against Trump's lie that he won the election and not Biden? She says she did in private, but there's no evidence she did in public. So WHY is this person being rehabilitated in the press?

Part of a lengthy thread on Trump's organization and the worldwide money laundering scheme by which rich dictators do business with more legitimate people.

"Cops Pepper Spray Nine-Year-Old Girl In Handcuffs"

This is what critics mean when they use the clumsy term "defund the police." What they're really talking about is having mid-level resources to prevent domestic and mental health situations from escalating to the point where they need police intervention.

Another entry in my series "Capitalism isn't completely worthless." Company heads who see employees storming the Capitol are firing those employees.

"Dozens of former Bush officials leave Republican Party, calling it 'Trump cult.'"
I think the former Bush officials are right.

A look at how Nixon's "Imperial Presidency" has morphed into today's behemoth. Senate Majority, now Minority Leader McConnell has aided the rise of shifting even more power to the Executive Branch by making the Senate into a relatively useless and inactive branch.

Lengthy thread exploring just how complicit federal institutions and Republican legislators were in the 6 January attack on the Capitol. Trump apparently decided a year in advance that he couldn’t possibly win a free and fair election.


Thousands of people being arrested in Russia over Navalny's treatment.

Republicans make completely unserious counter-proposal on Covid relief. Total joke. Deserves back-of-the-hand dismissal.

News media is excited by the idea of bipartisanship in the proposal (Democratic plan is $1.9 trillion, Republican plan is $0.6 trillion), but Democrats are completely and utterly uninterested.

Update (1 Feb): Republicans met with Biden and Harris to discuss their proposal. As of 13 Feb, there's no evidence tht Biden made any concessions at all.

Shorter Stephen Miller: "Waaah! Sob! Boo hoo! We lost the election!"

Good! The precedents of 1993 and 2009 are being remembeed and heeded and Biden is resolutely avoiding. Biden knows that we can expect zero cooperation from his political opponents. So he's not even going to try.

People concluding that the Republican Party can no longer be salvaged.

Senator Joe Manchin believes payments to Americans should be targeted so as to save money. As we see in VP Harris’ interview, the Biden Administration doesn’t agree. The fellow at Balloon Juice believes Manchin is a sweet and innocent child who really should know better.

"Trump's impeachment defense team leaves less than two weeks before trial"
Not at all surprising. Low probability of ever getting paid, and client is clearly guilty. Also, “Trump wanted the attorneys to argue there was mass election fraud” A few problems with this: 1. Doesn’t justify launching an autogolpe (Spanish for “self-coup”), 2. Five deaths and 140 officers wounded, including 15 who had to be hospitalized, 3. Around 60 court cases failed to provide any evidence of fraud.

What's interesting here is to listen to Tucker Carlson talk about how dangerous Representative AOC is and to then check out the second video (Teabaggers) in this next post where you can hear Rush Limbaugh and some Fox News guy talk about how dangerous Democrats are. There has been no evolution. They're saying exactly the same thing!

Hysterically overstating much? Senator Cruz says Biden, who has signed 25 Executive Orders, has signed more EOs in his first week than the past 15 presidents had during their entire terms. Erm, uh, Trump signed 220 EOs during his one term.

Wow! So remember that wacky, deranged, lunatic Representative who was talking about "Jewish space lasers" and shooting Speaker Pelosi? The former President just gave her a call and is in 100% support!

With the silencing of the Trump/Twitter & Fox News combination, Biden has a rare opportunity to really set the national agenda.

Chief Justice Roberts has ducked out of presiding over the second impeachment of Trump. This is not a legal problem, but it IS one of political “optics.”

Israel controls all borders to Palestinians (West Bank & Gaza) and thereby all access to the outside world. That makes it 100% responsible for seeing to it that they have access to anti-Covid medications.

Again, a Trump policy is swept away like a sandcastle on a beach. President Biden is adopting a new, more effective policy.

Update (13 Feb): Discarding Trump policies seems to be causing a rise in disapproval from a low of 34% to 37.2% today, but his approvals have remaied steady at 53% to 54%. Democrats give him a 98% approval while Republicans give him 85% disapproval.

So, remember when Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and his wife Louise Linton posed as though they were victorious super-villains with sheets of freshly-printed bills? Linton's an actress and here's her latest film:

A deepthink thread on impeachment

[snark/] Ah yes, the tremendously powerful and influential Representative AOC is dominating social media! But how about the poor fellows who are producing toxic materials that are speeding up climate change? Why don't they have big social media platforms?

Wow! How urgent do people consider Covid to be? This urgent! Actually, it's a pretty cool story:

Freezer storing vaccines breaks Thursday night in Seattle.
Medical center posts urgent message, sets up 11 p.m.-2 a.m. appointments before doses expire.
Hundreds show up in pajamas and robes to receive vaccine.
All doses administered.

Having never once complained about any of the 220 Executive Orders that the last President signed, many of which were immediately challenged in court, six state attorneys general have now warned President Biden that he may be overreaching his authority by signing so many EOs so quickly.

Heh! Finding employment after having served Trump. Not a happy story!

Proving that the four-year long attempt to destroy the ACA/Obamacare achieved nothing.

We saw back in 2017-18, when Republicans held, the House, the Senate and the Presidency, that the then Senate Majority Leader McConnell, had an extremely limited skill set. He could get bills passed when his caucus was in the majority and agreed with him (tax cut, right-wing judges) and he could block the other side. That was pretty much it. Now that he's facing a complex situation, he's pretty much helpless.

Yeah, never mind that both Fox News and the NY Times are ignoring the fact that the last president allowed the situation to deteriorate so badly for so long that, y'know, urgent executive action might be necessary!

White House Communications Director has a good answer to the NY Times:

As the NYT ed board criticizes President Biden this am for taking swift executive action to reverse the most egregious actions of the Trump Admin, I can’t help but recall that during the primary they encouraged voters to consider what a president could accomplish through exec 1/ ...

A year ago today, Joe Biden put out a prediction concerning the coronoavirus that has stood the test of time.

That’s kinda cool. An ally of Alexei Navalny in Russia is at home. The police show up at her house and rather than sit there and wait, she plays the piano until she’s actually handed the papers.

The collapsed Caliphate story by the NY Times and how only some people paid for that failure.

The US is not directly fighting the war on Yemen, we’re just providing all sorts of support to Saudi Arabia. Ending the war would go a long way to restoring America’s status as a moral and decent world power.

This is so cool! The Biden Administration is just taking Trump policies and procedures and just effectively crumpling them up and tossing them into the trash can! Beautiful! Absolutely beautiful!

Kinda frightening just how extremely radical freshman GOP Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene really is!
Bit of a problem with her description of Speaker Pelosi talking to Clinton in tweet #9. Pelosi allegedly advocates more school shootings in order to pass gun safety legislation. But the elementary school kids of the Sandy Hook shooting of 2012 did not lead to gun safety legislation! Why would Pelosi advocate for a solution that very clearly didn't work the first time?
More on her.

Yeah, it is completely and totally unnecessary to quote Trump voters on how they believe the election was stolen. "And he believes the election was stolen" is entirely sufficient. No furthr explanation is called for. 

That's very cool! Climate will be integrated into the National Intelligence Estimate! The reporter Natasha Bertrand earlier reported that the 2020 National Intelligence Estimate was never released!

Is capitalism good? Well, the CEO of Goya said some bat$%#@ crazy stuff. The board of the company, fearing for company profits, said something to the effect of: "OMG! Shut the #$@% up!!!" So I'd give it at least one "Hip-hip-hooray" out of three.

Rachel Maddow discussed the state of bipartisanship last night (very bad). It reminded me of this long-ago piece.

Well, That's pretty cool! In 1991, we thought this species of mouse was obliterated by a volcanic eruption. They're doing fine today!

QAnon was just a bad-news group from the very start. Four years of neglecting terrorist threats from in-country led to this!

[QAnon people have now] latched on to Sovereign Citizen movement, the white supremacist and the anti-federal government group who believe that in 1871 the United States became a corporation.

When we talk about the government spending a lot of money, we should avoid doing it like it was some ivory tower, abstract exercise. Failure to spend enough has very real and serious consequences.

76 years ago today (27 January), the worst of the Nazi death camps was liberated. Auschwitz will forever be a symbol.

CNN's Brianna Keilar examines just how completely and utterly useless Dr, Birx was.

Keep in mind as you read this that Minority Leader McConnell has never once demonstrated "comity" nor has he ever run any policy except a "scorched earth" one.

Today, I made clear that if Democrats ever attack the key Senate rules, it would drain the consent and comity out of the institution. A scorched-earth Senate would hardly be able to function. ...

President Biden walked a fine line with Vladimir Putin today as he challenged Putin on the bounties being paid for dead American troops in Afghanistan and the Solar Winds computer breach, neither of which were ever brought up by the last president. Also good to see Biden bringing up Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny.

Nikki Haley asks if we haven't beaten up Trump enough over the attack on the Capitol.
Eric Boehlert tweets: "reminder: GOP held 33 Benghazi hearings"

In an interview with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer last night, Schumer expressed a strong preference for option #2, to push through an uncompromised bill. The lesson of 2009 was that Democrats made a lot of concessions for nothing as Republicans then refused to vote for the bills that had been weakened in order to get Republican support. Democrats aren't going to play that way this time.

"SCOTUS Lets Trump Get Away With Emoluments"
Congress needs to pass laws that specify what "Emoluments" means and what the penalties are. There's an understanding now that emoluments refers to bribery and no one could prove a quid pro quo. A law must specify that proving bribery is not necessary.. The fact that you're profiting off of your official duties should be sufficient all by itself to provoke penalties.

*Sigh!* North Korea says, accurately, that they don't do what the NY Times did! The Times fired a reporter for a personal tweet. 

Interesting premise! The fellow who played Worf in Star Trek: The Next Generation, brings glasnost to the Klingon Empire!

The "Arab Spring" started ten years ago today. A look back and some lessons we can apply to our own country.

I think that it helps that the House impeachment was held before the former President left office, but yes, Senator Romney is right. The impeachment trial can take place after the President has left office.
If a president wants to conduct an autogolpe (Spanish for "self-coup"), when else would he or she do it other than in the last month? Are we going to give out a "Get Out of Jail Free" card for autogolpes in the last month? That would guarantee that the next loser would try again!

Nice humanizing detail that no Black or brown person would ever get before a trial for having “stormed the US Capitol.” Why the double standard? 

Well worth reading how violent anti-choicers were part of the attack on the Capitol on 6 January.

As is typical with other former Trump sycophants and yes-men, Dr. Birx is too little and too late with information that the American people should have gotten months ago!

One of the problems with the Dr. Birx interview was that Margaret Brennan failed to ask her about why she described the President as attentive and having a real grasp of the scientific literature. It was very obvious at the time that this simply wasn’t true.

Yep! Regular as clockwork. We get a Democratic President, all of the sudden the "Deficit Hawks" (or "Scolds") come out of the woodwork!

I don't agree with what Senator Rubio said about how Benghazi was handled, but Rubio did in fact say that people who do wrong should be held accountable. He followed this standard for many years after the attack. The question is, why doesn't he follow that same standard now when it comes to the 6 January coup attempt on the Capitol?

Senator Rubio is hopelessly confused as to what he thinks Congress ought to be doing. And no, I don't agree that there are other ways to punish the former President for the 6 January attack on the Capitol.

"Trumps Fired WH Chief Usher On Their Way Out The Door"
The White House usher was fired a half-hour before the Bidens too over, so they had to open the doors themselves.
The sheer pettiness and small-mindedness of the Trump people is just...wow!

The turn-over from one administration to the next was of extremely poor quality.

It is in the enlightened self-interest of wealthy to see to it that less wealthy nations get the COVID-19 vaccine.

The reason the cosplaying, wannabe revolutionaries collapsed so quickly as a military force (no coup attempts on Inauguration Day) is that they suddenly realized that the real, live National Guardspeople weren't messing around and that they stood real chance of dying.

Yeah, I strongly disagree that we're a "50-50 nation." It appears we are in the Senate, but that's because if you're Wyoming or Alabama, you have two senators. If you're Texas or New York or Rhode Island or Ohio, you've all got two senators. The number of Republican senators is wildly disproportionate to the population in those states. Keeping the filibuster alive also gives disproportionate power to the minority. Nah, we liberals outnumber them by a lot.

"Turned off by Biden’s approach, GOP opposition to stimulus relief intensifies"
No, the WaPo's wrong. Biden is failing to get Republican cooperation because Republicans have simply opposed everything Democrats have wanted to do.

Russian police walk calmly through a barrage of snowballs as citizens protest the treatment of Alexei Navalny.

Good thread on Dinesh D'Souza and how he doesn't even come up to the miserably low standard of the 1776 Report.

"Why Are Conservatives So Angry Biden Denounced White Supremacy?"
Problem is, the Proud Boys, QAnon and other white supremacists are not irrelevant and powerless. They are a subsection of the GOP that serves useful purposes for them.

Major, highly influential news guy Larry King, passes away.

Major problem here is that the GOP strategy of "block everything, no matter how much the nation needs action," was successful! It worked to increase Republican majorities in the House and Senate and played a role in getting Trump into the Presidency. Senate Majority Leader McConnell is running the same playbook again.

No, the WaPo's wrong. Biden is failing to get Republican cooperation because Republicans have simply opposed everything Democrats have wanted to do.

While the R Party talks about unifying the country, the D Party "Walks the walk" and actually acts to unify the country.

The last President talked about "Endless Wars" in the Middle East and how he wanted to end them. Our new President appears to actually want to do something that would really end them.

Update (4 Feb): The brutal Saudi Arabian war on Yemen is first up to be ended.

“We are ending all American support for offensive operations in the war in Yemen, including relevant arms sales,” Biden said, after describing the suffering that Yemenis have endured throughout a civil war that began in 2014.

"How Trump Left The Country With No Real Vaccine Distribution Plan"
Think the real problem here is at least partially the allergy of the Republican Party to big government. This is a 50-state problem and it requires national coordination. This is not at all consistent with he libertarian notion that we don't need any authority higher than the county sheriff. Democrats, on the other hand, are perfectly comfortable with national solutions.

*Sigh!* People just desperate to criticize the new President for something!

I understand that the former Director of the CDC and former Vice-President Pence's coronavirus task force feel angry and defensive about people describing their vaccine planning as a worthless piece 'o dung, but their performance is just completely indefensible.

There's a new crew in town! They're going to take a close and careful look at the Census so far and will deploy whatever they need to make sure it's accurate!

Ah, okay. Trump loyalist Michael Ellis was placed in a job where he would oversee the highly-classified server where the documents for the former President's call to Ukraine were stored.
Ellis has been placed on administrative leave until lawyers can sift through the laws concerning appointments to see whether Ellis is really authorized to be where he is.

"Democrats aren't playing McConnell's game on filibuster"
This is very good news! The filibuster was romanticized in the 1939 movie "Mr Smith goes to Washington," but really, it was primarily used to defend slavery and was used by the current Senate Minority Leader to obstruct Obama's agenda, full stop. It hasn't been used for any really useful purpose for the entire time it's existed.

A friend of mine sent this to me last night. Very good. Please watch it all the way to the end. It's well worth it to do so.

In the attack on 6 January, the former President achieved strategic surprise. No one was expecting a physical assault on the Capitol. but on Inauguration Day, in biological terms, they had "provoked an immune response." All their tin-pot, play-soldier groups couldn't hope to topple National Guards people that were ready for them.

Looks like Alexey Navalny intends to become the next Nelson Mandela. Let’s hope he gets into power much sooner.

Ah, the competence! The sheer attention to detail and dedication to mission and organization!

Effects of the now-discontinued Muslim ban:

Trump’s Muslim visa ban wrought enormous harm to innocent Americans. It kept grandchildren from visiting their grandparents. Some died alone and far away. It separated not only families but close friends. It separated colleagues. It broke up research teams. It ruined careers and businesses.

And you know what’s insane? Those are partisan positions!

Can’t believe that instead of uniting America, Biden is taking partisan positions like “The Pandemic is Real” and “Let’s Listen to the Scientists”

This is pretty cool! The next Mars rover, due to land there in mid-February, will have microphones so as to capture what Mars sounds like.

Entirely expected, but still very good news!

Joe Biden signs executive action to rejoin Paris Climate Accord "as of today."

List of Executive Orders signed today by our President.

A young Black woman talks about race during Biden's inaugural and a Fox News person criticizes her and her poem. If talking about racism is divisive, I don't understand what it is that liberals are supposed to do about that. Are we just supposed to ignore it? Are we supposed to simply shut our eyes to the prevalence of white supremacy? I don't understand what our solution is supposed to be.

Our National Youth Poet Laureate and more on the inauguration

Ah, with he iauguration of President Biden, Rush Limbaugh weeps salty, bitter tears! Delicious!

The off-going President talked about ending “forever wars,” but those ambitions were never anything more than idle chatter. If Biden really wants to turn Iran away from adventuring in the Middle East, bring Iran into economic integration first. Give them something they don’t want to lose.

Wow! The first time we’ve had any national mourning for lives lost to Covid! The night before Biden takes charge.

Hmm. Yeah, I agree. Trump’s presidency will be studied hundreds of years from now. Not in the way Fox News host Sean Hannity thinks, but yes, it will be studied!

How was the departing President as “The Peace President?”

He didn’t end wars—not even one.
He escalated wars while bragging about no new wars.

US makes a really good, awesome, positive declaration about the Uighurs, but it's completely meaningless as we aren't part of the ICC. And again, I'm not really sure what this "as we're going out the door" policymaking is inteneded to accomplish. It's not like we didn't know about the Uighurs being abused by the Chinese. The US has known since at least June 2020 that serious human rights violations were being committed.

But Trump has also been very open about the fact that he held off on such sanctions while he was negotiating a trade deal with China. According to former national security adviser John Bolton’s memoir, Trump even told Chinese leader Xi Jinping in 2019 that building concentration camps for the Uighurs was “exactly the right thing to do.”

Conservatives have put out a document titled "1776 Project." It lists "progressivism" between "fascism" and "slavery" as a "Challenge to America's principles."

This is essentially a right-wing response to the 1619 Project. As per usual on anything involved with the current, off-going President, it's sloppy as hell. They didn't even use any professional historians. The problem will only arise if schools actually start using it.

Update (27 Jan): "President Biden abolished former President Trump’s 1776 Commission on 'patriotic education' Tuesday, calling it 'offensive' and 'counterfactual.'"

Former long-time-ago Speaker Newt Gingrich says some true stuff here, but Digby's right. Gingrich has contributed far too much hatred to the world to ever be credible when he speaks for peace.

Yeah, unfortunately, that's how a lot of the people and companies view MLK Day.

The off-going First Lady usually give the oncoming First Lady a tour of the living quarters. Melania Trump follows her husband by snubbing Jill Biden.

"Panic Buttons Were Torn Out Of Ayanna Pressley’s Office BEFORE The Riot"
This is very disturbing because it was clearly an inside job.

The blogger has written a book about how the soon-to-be-ex President is running a "Post-Policy Presidency." The piece also shows why it is that absolutely no one wants to hire someone who's worked for this administration. These people knew months ago that distributing the vaccine would be a critically important test of how organized and together they were. They've failed that test, very badly.

Ben Smith is indeed correct! He says everybody blames everybody else for Trump and they all refuse to take responsibility for their own complicity. Very true! The NY Times is deeply complicit in having supported Trump and Fox News over the last four years.

Human Rights Watch says Israel must provide vaccinations to Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza. As those two territories are under siege, they have no independent means of getting vaccine by themselves. Vaccine has to come through Israeli border controls.

Nikki Haley:

Biden’s plan to double the federal minimum wage would kill between 1.3 & 3.7 million jobs...

Raising the minimum wage does have a bad effect on marginal workers and those who are first starting out. But that effect normally just lasts a year or so before the extra consumer demand makes it necessary to hire those workers again. If raising the minimum wage had permanently bad effects, we’d have stopped raising it a long time ago.

Good! The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was rendered toothless by the Trump Administration. Biden wants to return it to its former function.

Theory does not equal reality. "Let him grieve" was obviously a poor strategy.

Incoming Biden Administration is confident they can vaccinate 100 million people before too long. I believe them because they're working as a team and they understand how government works.

Ah, Chef José Andrés, our hero!

Good Lord! The off-going, one-term President wants to collect $2 BILLION (With a “B”) for a Presidential library? Grift city!

Obama wanted half of that for his library and he served two terms!

I’ve toured the Lyndon B. Johnson Library. That was finished in 1971 and cost $18 million to build.

Why on Earth does the Secretary of State want to designate the Houthis of Yemen a terrorist group at the very last minute like this!?!?!?! He wants this designation to take place one day before Trump leaves office!

Was the flash a supernova? No, it actually occurs every 115 days. It's a star circling a black hole and transferring major amounts of energy on every pass.

Vice President Mike Pence telephoned Vice President-elect Kamala Harris Thursday to congratulate her and offer his assistance ahead of next week's swearing-in...

Nice thing to do. Very last week of a 2 1/2 month transition, but uh, yeah, okay.

Still more evidence that the attack on the Capitol was not a "riot," but rather more like a military-style attack.

Really excellent summary of the off-going President’s only term.

Inside the building, Trump has been weathering a second impeachment and growing isolation from his onetime allies in sullen desolation. He has grown more and more worried about what legal or financial calamities may await him when he is no longer president, people who have spoken to him said, fueled by warnings from lawyers and advisers.

This is very good news!

Team Biden is going to make a forceful defense of Keynesian counter-cyclical spending and won't be cowed by the bad faith deficit scolds.

No grand victory tour on his last lap as Secretary of State. Pompeo closes down shop as a Secretary with little or no legacy. He’ll be remembered as the fellow who failed to support people like Marie Yovanovitch.

The tweets are short on diplomatic accomplishments measured in the traditional fashion—there are few mentions of any agreements reached, no statistical measures of progress, nothing.

The off-going Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's legacy. Nothing to cheer. Leaves behind a bitter, angry world.


From a WH source: “without twitter as an outlet no one left here is safe from his tantrums.”

Better his minions suffer than that the rest of us should have to bear his rage-tweeting, etc.

Yeah, the off-going President's final days do have a feeling of Nixon departing to them. He's certainly going out on a very low note and not on any feeling of triumph or accomplishment.

Carl Bernstein compares the final days of Nixon and Trump.

"Ex-MI Gov. Rick Snyder And Others To Be Charged In Flint Water Crisis"
Wow! Long overdue! Many, many years overdue! Very good, but very late!

Yeah, Rachel Maddow covered this at the top of her hour last night. The real problem was the appointment of "managers" who could override the democratic decisions of cities and towns.

Very interesting that the people who invaded the Capitol on the 6th apparently got tours of the Capital on the 5th. Tours had not taken place for many months, so this immediately struck many people as suspicious. An investigation has been initiated.

Woo hoo! Impeached for the second time! Let's see if we can get a Senate conviction this time!

Ever since the election, Sean Hannity's show, which once appeared invincible, has been squeezed from the right by Newsmax and OAN and from the left by Rachel Maddow of MSNBC and Chris Cuomo of CNN.

The invasion and occupation of the Capitol was planned. It wasn’t a sudden, spontaneous inspiration.

And, as usual, nothing is ever the President’s fault.

Very interesting. 50 armed DHS agents sat around twiddling their thumbs during the siege of the Capitol.

The off-going, one-term President was fully aware of what was happening in the Capitol. He just didn't care.

Concerning the attack on the Capitol, let's have a look at what State Representatives in Michigan and elsewhere had to put up with just a few months ago.

Never saw Liz Cheney as stupid. Evil yes, but never stupid. She proves that she isn’t going down that insane rabbit hole that other Republicans are going into.

Update (1 Feb): Minority Leader McConnell backs her but Represnative Gaeta hates her. She "does not speak for Wyoming."

Good grief, what a pair of complete and utter snowflakes! Neither Secretary of State Pompeo nor VOA Director Reilly had the fortitude to be able to answer critical questions.

This is pretty cool! Three stars share one planet! At about 1,800 light years away (our galactic disk is about 1,000 light years thick and roughly 200k light years in diameter) it's a reasonably close galactic neighbor of ours.

Tapper is correct. "Over 50 million Americans think this election was stolen" because Republicans like Representative Jordan keep tossing gasoline onto the flames.

Very happy to see some good, strong Democratic pushback against Representative Jordan's lies.

On 12 January, there still had not been any press conferences by anyone other than the DC Mayor and Police!

Problem with the Julian Assange case is that it's not just one of freedom of the press. It combines the actions of state actors working in their own purposes as well as journalism.

*Sigh!* A post of exasperating stupidity, starting with:

"Well look, they gave us a taste of this pre-election when they suppressed the Hunter Biden story."

Jeanine Pirro was referring to when Twitter limited the circulation of an error-laden New York Post story linked to a Russian disinformation campaign ahead of the 2020 election.
Hunter Biden was a complete non-issue from the get-go.

One of the heroes of the siege.

Not over. Nowhere near over.

Update: No further actions by insurrectionists. Far too many National Guards people on duty. "Pentagon authorizes 25,000 National Guard members for inauguration"

President pens a lengthy letter to Speaker Pelosi. In the first paragraph, he calls his second impeachment "unconstitutional." Uh, no. It was made clear during his first impeachment that the House can impeach a president as many times as they please. President made what he considers an awesome case. I'm not very impressed.

"QAnon Congresswoman Faces Calls For Arrest For Tweeting Speaker Pelosi's Location To Rioters"
Oh, my God! Throw the book at this woman! She needs to be placed in federal custody immediately! She needs to go to prison and to never, ever come out!

Representative Lauren Boebert came up with an extremely unpersuasive reason as to why she tweeted out the location of the Speaker of the House during an attack on the Capitol.
Back in the Navy, we called that a "Security Violation." I repeat, she needs to go to prison for a very long time.

Cool! In the comic and in the first version of the TV show, Batwoman was a white woman. They'e going to try having a Black woman play her part this time. Should be interesting to see how this version works out.

DC Police and Mayor have held briefings, but yes, no one above them has. Quite suspicious.

Maggie Haberman is an NY Times reporter with lots of "inside sources" in the Trump Administration. So how truly useful were those sources? At a time when an inside source would really have been useful in examining questions such as, what role did Secretary of Defense play during the invasion and occupation of the Capitol, her sources turn out to be utterly useless.

Senator Ted Cruz bemoans the “deep national division” that he himself has done a great deal to deepen.

Excellent video from Schwarzenegger! Also, good piece on pardons.

"Lindsey Graham Urges Biden to Stop 2nd Trump Impeachment Push by Democratic Lawmakers"
I kept reading this and listened to Graham's interview and kept wondering "In exchange for what?!?!?!" Okay, the President promises to behave, but this wasn't just something that happened on his watch, it happened with his actively inciting a mob. No, a simple apology (Which the President hasn't offered) won't do. There must be consequences for that attack on our nation's Capitol!

Hmm. I dunno about this. Not a lawyer myself, of course, but an example of permissibly compromising the 1st Amendment was given as yelling "fire" in a crowded theater. Seems to me that inciting a riot would fall under the very same public safety exception. As the off-going President sent out a message in advance ("It'll be wild!"), I wouldn't bet any money on the President's defense.

When people write the history of this era, they're going to find that pretty much everything we "know" about Ivanka and concerning Ivanka comes directly from Ivanka or close associates of hers.

Update (1 Feb): Why is Ronna McDaniel, head of the RNC, being treated as though she's on some sort of hot, winning streak? Her party lost the House in 2018, the Presidency in 2020, the Senate in 2021 and then launched an autogolpe, a violent take-over, of the Capitol. But the WaPo treats her to a fawning puff piece in their Style section!

The Covid is really just getting bad everywhere.

Tucker Carlson tries desperately to push back against CNN’s Brianna Keilar's very good and accurate piece that tore him apart.

No, I really can’t be bothered to think about how Trump supporters will react in response to anything. Not my problem.

Trump’s true base was never poor people, but wealthy and crazy white guys.

Earth may have gotten lots of water from metorites, specifically from the carbonaceous chondrites variety.

Because the off-going President incited the attack on the Capitol that left five people dead and all kinds of damage, Trump is the real victim because he's lost access to Twitter!

There's non-public intelligence, information that nation-states ferret out using all the tools and techniques seen in James Bond movies. Then there's what we call "Open Source Intelligence," firms that just go through what's publicly available to figure out what nations or movements are up to. It was obvious for many such firms that an attack on the Capitol was likely.

The off-going President is absolutely convinced, Convinced, I tell you!, that America's image around the world has improved due to his leadership. Yeah....erm...uh, no. Not really. And now the US has taken another major hit due to the violent occupation of the Capitol.

One reason Trump people may be leaving early is that they realize that the Trump stink is going to be awfully hard to wash off in any event and they want to get an early head start.


Ivanka decided that perhaps shutting the fuck up and deleting the tweet was the best option.

What happened in just four years that made Democrats able to flip the House, the Presidency and then the Senate?

The thoughts of the former First Lady on the events of the past few days.

What would be the consequence of “Looking forwards, not backwards,” that is, of not prosecuting Trump and his enablers? The lesson of history is that the consequences would be very bad.

Democrats wanted to “Look forwards, not backwards” until the Capitol was occupied by thugs.

I normally don't have much use for Meghan McCain, but she's right here. We need to invoke the 25th Amendment and to remove the President now!

Video of the penetration of the fence. Very sad. Far too few people at the fence. Far too little back up. The cops there were hugely outnumbered by the attackers. When I went to my first anti-Iraq War demonstration in Philadelphia, there were way more police, drawn up into rows, ready and waiting for any disorder.

Rudy Giuliani makes a really pathetic statement here. Where is the evidence that Antifa was even involved in the first place?

As of 4:00am this morning (7 Jan), the off-going President finally agreed to "an orderly transition."

Hmm. A commercial company, Twitter, sanctions the off-going President (Cancels his account) in a way that Congress couldn't.

Update: Good! The off-going President's Twitter account is suspended indefinitely.

The blogger strongly recommends immediate impeachment and removal.

Senator Josh Hawley (R-MS) does a “BothSides” to violence against law enforcement. More on Hawley's views.

"Dark Matter" has been used as an explanation for gravitational effects that don't appear explainable in any other way. But it might not exist after all.

Extensive commentary on the attack on the Capitol. I consider it an autogolpe, Spanish for "self-coup," it was a very deliberate, directed attack with a clear strategic purpose, to overthrow our democratic and Constitutional republic and to install Trump as a dictator.

"McConnell Blasts Trump's 'Conspiracy Theories' as He Shuts Down Coup Attempt"
Which is nice, but it's far too little and far too late. I noted that when McConnell announced that Joe Biden was indeed the President-Elect, it was about a month and a half after the fact and just a few hours after Vladimir Putin announced the same thing!

Of course President-Elect Biden will address the chaos in the Capitol. It's not like we have an actual, sitting President who was be able to take charge or anything.

Summary of what the off-going, one term President said. "Basically, great job but now go home."
Off-going President “calls off” his people. “We can’t play into the hands of these people,” Trump said. “So go home. We love you. You’re very special.”

Pretty sad when we have to congratulate the sitting Vice President for, y'know, following the law, but there you have it. Pence will not attempt to overturn the election!

Just saw a piece on how Vitamin D is helpful in preventing COVID-19. Salmon's been a favorite of mine since I was stationed in Italy. Egg yolks, yep. I eat the whole egg cooked up into omelets. Oatmeal? Every day!

Not a sealed-up, done deal yet, but it’s looking really good for both of the Democratic Georgia candidates!

Woo hoo! Democratic Georgia Senate candidate Warnock clinches it!

Reverend Raphael Warnock, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Ebenezer Baptist Church.

I blame the off-going President for this. Anti-maskers demonstrate in grocery store.

The demonstration that the off-going, one-term President is calling for doesn't start until tomorrow, but demonstrators are getting in some violence early.

"What's the harm in letting this play out?" We're seeing the harm play out in real time!

Police weighing in on the story.

Propagandists gonna propagandize. Of course Senator Hawley hysterically exaggerates what the candel-light protesters in front of his house did. The protesers, because they aren't idiots, documented everything.

The off-going President is correct, the world IS watching but what they see horrifies them.

Just how liberals feel about Trump supporters?

Omsk, Siberia has their own version of Boston's L Street Brownies.

Trump Administration person tries desperately to justify their getting immunization shots into a tenth of what they promised.

This is interesting. Rest of the post is a detailed run-down on the phone call the President made to the Georgia Secretary of State. Love this line: “the president of the united states asking if maybe we could get some shit to fall off the back of a truck”

A detailed look Congresswoman Lauren Boebert, who wishes to carry a firearm in Washington DC. Granted, like the blogger, I’m a reasonably capable-looking kinda guy and was back when I spent four years in Washington DC (1978-1982). Neither of us think the city was or is anywhere near as dangerous as she claims it is.

Woo hoo! "The Squad" expands!
Note: All of the original members won their re-elections.

Good! I wholeheartedly endorse this!

More than 170 prominent business leaders — including the CEOs of Deloitte, Pfizer and Lyft — signed a letter urging Congress to accept the Electoral College results.

I agree! Impeaching this President (again) is the correct response here! If we permit this blatant attempt to interfere with democratic elections to go unpunished, we're guaranteeing it'll happen every four years!

Representative Louie Gohmert is certainly a clownish, bumbling figure. Question is, is he also the future of the Republican Party?

“Covering politics as an amoral sport” should always have been repellent! Politics affects people’s lives! It’s only a relatively few highly privileged people who have the luxury of viewing politics as a sport!

Someone in the Pentagon is very deeply worried about what recent Trump appointees are up to.

About that letter that all 10 living Defense Secretaries signed onto, this appears to suggest that Trump is up to something really bad!

Whooo-weee!!! This site reproduces 4 1/2 minutes of the off-going, one-term President trying to convince the Georgia Secretary of State that "some guy he knows" is more credible than the people whose job it is to verify the election!

Response to a piece in the Philadelphia Inquirer today.

Good summary of where we’re at right now.

There are millions of doses of vaccine sitting in storage right now. There is no plan to get them to people. ...

Looks like Ukraine is producing some pretty cool science fiction films.

Fox & Friends:

"Operation Warp Speed getting a lot of blame but really the states are where the slowdown is occurring."

Right, but that was entirely predictable when the Trump Administration decided to delegate much of the distribution of the vaccine to the states. The federal government has taken on far too little of the role they needed to take on.

Republican Senator Ted Cruz (TX):

“By any measure, the allegations of fraud and irregularities in the 2020 election exceed any in our lifetimes.”

I guess that's true, if you look at Cruz's precise wording. The allegations are astounding. The proof? Ehh, not so much. After about 60 cases brought by Giuliani, Powell and others, nota single case of voter fraud has been proven.

Update: Senator Ted Cruz wants everyone to calm down about the wild, hysterical, baseless accusations of voter fraud having gotten everyone all riled up and distrustful of our democracy. But he's one of the people who has been riling people up! There have been 60 court cases that have collectively found zippo that supports any accusation of cheating.

Critis of Cruz were not amused.

Jeanine Pirro is correct and Peter Navarro (an advisor to the President) is absolutely, 100% wrong. The transition date for the off-going President to vacate the White House is firmly set in the Constitution and cannot be changed short of passing a Constitutional Amendment.

From the hashtag #GOPSeditiousTraitors:

Four deaths in Benghazi - 16 investigations
350k deaths of Covid - no investigations

Good! Pennsylvania's Republican Senator Pat Toomey puts out a good statement on the Hawley, Cruz, et al statement justifying their proposed challenge to the 2020 election. Rah! Rah!

The off-going Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, has been putting out a series tweets glorifying his tenure. Nah, the descriptions "swagger" and "professionalism" do not belong together. You do one or the other. Can't do both at the same time.

Mehdi Hasan is right and Secretary of State Pompeo is wrong. The US DID side with Saudi Arabia when they decided to murder an American resident who was also a reporter for an American newspaper.

With Palestinians under siege, that means Israel controls all of their interactions with the outside world. That means if Israel decides "No vaccines for you!" there's nothing Palestinians can do about it.

Robots do some pretty good dancing here!

Representative Louie Gohmert argues that the Vice-President has the unlimited power to accept or reject Elector ballots. That means, of course, that Al Gore should have been able to declare himself President in 2001.

Heh! This fellow reads tweets that oppose the $2k check for everyone, then checks on what their houses look like. Yep, just what you'd expect. If you oppose the $2k check, there's about a 100% chance that you live in a mansion.

Yeah, I remember Y2K. And yes, I agree with the fellow here. It's not that it was never a problem, it's that lots of people spent lots of time and money to make sure that the Y2K Bug was eradicated before the dreaded date hit.

New Senator Madison Cawthorn says there are "thousands" of recent examples of voter fraud. Funny, because in around 60 cases that the Rudy Giuliani-led legal team initiated after the 2020 election, they couldn't identify a single such case.

What Representative Rutherford's statement makes clear is that he's raising unsubstantiated allegations to the level of proven fact. He presents absolutely no facts to back up his claims.

Historians agree that 2020 was the sixth worst year ever.

New Senator Madison Cawthorn says there are "thousands" of recent examples of voter fraud. Funny, because in around 60 cases that the Rudy Giuliani-led legal team initiated after the 2020 election, they couldn't identify a single such case.

As Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner are fully aware of how badly their public images have deteriorated, they've recruited the NY Times to try and rescue them.

Is there anything Dolly Parton doesn't do well and with flair and class? She's deserving of special notice this year as she was an early contributor to the development of a COVID-19 vaccine.

There was a 7% drop in greenhouse gas emissions in 2020, but that wasn't the result of deliberate policy. We need to do better.