Mess Me Around

Two minutes is about the right length for a simple pop song. Open thread.

66 replies
  1. 1
    Ben Franklin says:

    Read the language very carefully….

  2. 2
    Ben Franklin says:

    See any words left out of the NYT article…....hint; bigger fish to fry

  3. 3
    Violet says:

    Did anyone see that Nate Silver called pundits “fundamentally useless”:

    “I don’t want to totally lump reporters and pundits in together, right? It’s kind of venial sins versus cardinal sins basically — right? — where reporting is very, very important and journalism is very, very important, and there are some things about campaign coverage that I might critique. Whereas punditry is fundamentally useless.”

    Politico link (sorry).

  4. 4
    BruinKid says:

    Oh geez, shooting at an ELEMENTARY school in Newtown, Connecticut. A parent is saying the principal was killed. Gunman still on the loose.

  5. 5
    👽 Martin says:

    @BruinKid: Never would have happened if those first graders were concealed-carrying.

  6. 6
    Rosalita says:


    Oh geez, shooting at an ELEMENTARY school in Newtown, Connecticut. A parent is saying the principal was killed. Gunman still on the loose.

    This is happening fifteen minutes from me… lots of conflicting information right now. Hospital confirmed three injured so far. Jesus, what is wrong with people?

  7. 7
    👽 Martin says:

    @Ben Franklin: You know, the nudge-nudge, wink-wink thing works with the group when there is a rational point that you’re trying to make that others could reasonably see. For a commenter like you, you really need to spell your point out quite clearly, because we all think your nuts to begin with. So just out with it already.

  8. 8

    From Twitter

    Condolences to the families of those freedomed to death today in Connecticut school.

  9. 9
    piratedan says:

    had a dream last night where Rice hadn’t removed her name and was in the hearing with Senator Grumpypants and after he asked her something else patently ridiculous she goes off politely citing her credentials and then proudly listing each and every bit of Republican douchbaggery that has taken place over the last 20 years from Iraq to Afghanistan to 9/11 to their being wrong about Muslim fundalmentalism in all its forms and then being a member of the party that voted to reduce the amount of money that keeps our foreign office staff safe in the name of petty politics and if he still thinks he’s fit to deny her the chair then so be it.
    Then everyone has an outrage and says how can you have such disrespect for the office yada yada yada and Rice replies indicating that if I have to represent our country I have to have the ability to stand up to our nation’s enemies and if I can’t defend myself then how in the hell can I defend our nation’s best interests?
    and then heads explode…. and the balloon juice commentariat smokes a cig

  10. 10

    @👽 Martin:

    You think you are joking this was just tweeted by @BryanJFisher

    Shooters attack an elementary school in CT – another “gun-free zone.” Makes children sitting ducks

  11. 11
    Violet says:

    @Litlebritdifrnt: Nothing says safety like a classroom full of seven-year-olds with guns.

  12. 12
    Ben Franklin says:

    @👽 Martin:

    I don’t see a need normally to insult commentator’s intelligence, but in your case I’ll make an exception….

    Obama hasn’t gone after MM patients in California, directly…(you know; voters and all)
    he only attacked them INdirectly by drying up the dispensaries.

    So, when he says he doesn’t want to go after recreational users in CO/WA, because he has
    bigger fish to fry, he’s merely saying the same thing……bullshit.

    Now, are those sentences simple and declarative enough for you?

  13. 13
    slag says:

    Dog meets Christmas ornament…hijinks ensue:

  14. 14
    Huntly says:

    That Babies album rocks! Thx

  15. 15
    Sterling says:

    @Litlebritdifrnt: Classy guy. Even if I felt sympathy with republican policies, I still couldn’t be part of a group that encourages jerks like this.

  16. 16
    Violet says:

    @slag: That’s funny. That dog is so enthusiastic.

  17. 17
    ruemara says:

    @Ben Franklin: At any point, do you get that marijuana is still federally illegal? Which has fuck-all to do with Obama.

  18. 18
    slag says:

    @Violet: And I love that it appears to verify that no one’s home before it goes all out on that thing. Premeditated spazzyness.

  19. 19

    @Huntly: Fun Fact, The Babies lead singer lived next door to me when they were just forming the band. They used to rehearse in there all the time. The guy always stuck out cause he never left the house without his fur coat on.

  20. 20
    Violet says:

    @slag: Yeah. Smart doggie!

  21. 21
    Yutsano says:

    @ruemara: He’s DISAPPOINTED, don’t you see? And Obama will continue to DISAPPOINT him because Obama does not enact the exact agenda unilaterally in the exact order ol’ Ben wants. So he shall forever be DISAPPOINTED! You must acknowledge the DISAPPOINTMENT even on events that haven’t happened yet! Get it now?

    @slag: BEAGLEPUPPEH!! :)

  22. 22
    Zam says:

    Looks like Republican science has made its way into the judicial system.

  23. 23
    Cassidy says:

    @ruemara: No. He won’t get it. It’s been explained and him and his emo-prog friends refuse to acknowledge that and other parts of reality. For them it’s all about being able to scream “WORSE THAN BUSH” and impress us with their purity.

  24. 24
    👽 Martin says:


    Jesus, what is wrong with people?

    Connecticut (broadly) suffers many of the same problems as my city. Parents overinvested in their kids education, so they take every trivial problem, run it through the overinvested parent gauntlet, ramp it up into a catastrophe, and then do stupid shit as a result.

    Part of it is a residual cost of our income inequality problem. If the perception is that only the top 5% can actually achieve the American Dream™, then there is tremendous pressure from end-to-end to push your kid into that strata. It’s an acknowledgement even by those in that class that the game is rigged against the average worker.

    Another part of it is the so-called war on education in this country. The GOP has been marketing along with Michelle Rhee that the US education system is horrible beyond all measure, that teachers are eschewing math for gay marriage lessons, and that parents must be fierce advocates for their kids in every trivial aspect of their education. It’s really over the top in many places. Compounding the problem is underfunded schools and a lack of capacity so that you have a very inelastic market – and inelastic markets cause the demand side to ramp up signficantly – so you get this intense competition around a limited number of schools/teachers that simply gets out of hand.

    The problem isn’t just within K-12 but if the university systems are overwhelmed and there are limited jobs (particularly, limited good-paying jobs) than a cohort of parents are going to look at those odds and carry them back into K-12: In order to get a good job, you need to get into a good school, which means you need to be exceptionally good in high school and get placed into AP/Honors courses which means you need A’s in middle school and to start o the right educational tracks there, which means you need to be in GATE in elementary school, which means being placed with the right teacher no later than 3rd grade… and on and on.

    And this isn’t a wholly isolated problem. It may not be a national problem, but there isn’t a school in my largish city that doesn’t suffer from this VERY widely. Those two articles at the top are just from the last few months that made national news. High-stakes education has been internalized by a lot of parents, who are in turn feeding the demand for even more high-stakes education. Connecticut (I used to live there) has a higher than usual social attention to education, particularly with institutions like Yale and Choat and others and cities like mine such as Greenwich where these attitudes fester and get out of hand.

  25. 25
    Raven says:

    @👽 Martin: And you connect this to the shooting just exactly HOW?

  26. 26
    👽 Martin says:


    You think you are joking this was just tweeted by @BryanJFisher

    They are as predictable as the morning sun. There is no problem that couldn’t be solved by the application of more guns. And Fisher doesn’t even represent the gun interest – he’s the family values guy – gays and abortion. You can only imagine what the NRA guys are advocating here.

  27. 27
    Ben Franklin says:

    Oh, I see…..”He’s not King Obama, you know” defense.

    He’s powerless, circumscribed and a non-angry former pot-head.

  28. 28
    shortstop says:

    @slag: So hilarious. As the co-human of a beagle mix, I’m not dumb enough to ever set up a dog cam. Best not to know.

  29. 29
    Cassidy says:

    @Ben Franklin: Emo-prog is emo. Today also ends in “y”.

  30. 30
    👽 Martin says:

    @Raven: Specifically, I don’t, and I wasn’t referring in any way to this particular incident. But there really is a trend growing of parents committing crimes and threatening or committing violence in relation to their kids schools. This may or may not be part of that trend – it could be a completely random act for all we know, but the question was ‘what is wrong with these people’ – so I took it to encompass similar types of acts.

    We had a teachers aide killed in my city last year at her school that was a straight-up domestic violence act. So, it may not relate to the school directly at all in this case.

  31. 31
    Cassidy says:

    @Yutsano: You know what would be awesome? If thye wouls stop being so DISAPPOINTED and become MOTIVATED to do things like work in elections and run for office and other such things to help push a liberal agenda. Instead, they’d rather sit around in their squid cloud of butthurt and be DISAPPOINTED.

  32. 32
    Mike E says:

    Ain’t No Sunshine When She’s Gone by Bill Withers, just a scant couple of seconds over 2 minutes long, is THE perfect pop song.

    And Bob Costas better not open his mouth this time because FREEDOM!

  33. 33
    Raven says:

    @👽 Martin: OK, I guess it would be irresponsible not to speculate.

  34. 34
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Ben Franklin: Okay, what would have liked for Obama to have said?

  35. 35
    Ben Franklin says:


    Heh. Labeling is such a comfort. It excuses oneself from the issue, don’t it?

  36. 36
    General Stuck says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Okay, what would have liked for Obama to have said?

    Don’t bogart that joint, my friend. Pass it over to me, again?

  37. 37
    Yutsano says:

    @Cassidy: Oh you mean like we did in Washington by no longer criminalising a recreational drug so our resources could be better devoted to other tasks? Plus gain a new avenue of tax revenue that will greatly assist our budget? But then how am I to bash THAT ONE if I do that? That would ruin my emo cred.

  38. 38
    Maude says:

    The gunman is dead. One person was shot.
    How horrible.

  39. 39
    Ben Franklin says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    “The People have spoken in CO/WA, and owing to the principle ‘Community Standards’ I will be asking Congress to address those Federal laws which are in conflict”

  40. 40
    Raven says:

    NOW I have something that pisses me off. They just had a little kid on MSNBC describing what she saw and heard. Fucking assholes.

  41. 41
    MikeJ says:

    @Mike E: Also too, The Letter by The Boxtops is ~1:57. Bangkok by Alex in his solo years is 2:01 in the studio version, but the vastly superior Live in London version is stretched out to nearly 3 minutes.

    I have a whole playlist in itunes with nothing but short songs. Think I was planning a name that tune for cleek’s place. Many great songs in there. Molly’s Lips by The Vaselines, Do you Wanna Dance by the Ramones, Rock on the Moon by the Cramps, I just Want to Get Along by The Breeders…the list just goes on and on.

  42. 42
    Cassidy says:

    @Ben Franklin: That was such a generic emo-prog answer that I’m kind of sad you guys have become so damn predictable. I can actually hear you trying to do your best, folksy Dr. Phil impression and pretend that you are so far above everyone in your purity and intelligence. I feel sorry for you. Your schtick is as worn out as Palin’s.

    @Yutsano: What’s really telling, to me, is that we have another tragic incidence of gun violence, that, in all likelihood, was committed with legally purchased firearms and he’s here to whine because of imaginary words that only he heard/ read. Children have been traumatized, injured, and [fortunately] no confirmation of any killed, but he has a sad because the POTUS didn’t whip out a joint and say “we’re gonna smoke this shit”.

  43. 43
    Higgs Boson's Mate says:

    Obama’s “bigger fish to fry” statement is indeed a good thing. The problem as I see it is that the statement wasn’t backed by a move to reduce marijuana down from a Schedule I substance (Along with heroin and cocaine; illegal for a physician to prescribe) to being legal to prescribe. Absent that, Obama’s successor in office can assert the Constitution’s Supremacy Clause and send in the Narcs.

  44. 44
    catclub says:

    @👽 Martin: Or, someone had a relationship problem with the Principal of the school, and took it there.

  45. 45
    Maude says:

    CNN is reporting multiple fatalities. Who knows. They aren’t known to be right much of the time. The Yahoo news is that police have evacuated the school.
    Oh, for MSNBC, that should be illegal to talk to a minor after something like this. I have no words for MSNBC.

  46. 46
    redshirt says:

    My gun needs a gun.

  47. 47
    Ben Franklin says:


    What are you, the Poster Boy for Redemptive Self-Awareness? lol

  48. 48
    👽 Martin says:

    @Ben Franklin: They are, thank you.

    So, when he says he doesn’t want to go after recreational users in CO/WA, because he has bigger fish to fry, he’s merely saying the same thing……bullshit.

    Well, but is it? I see your point, but everyone acknowledges that there is a legitimate conflict here. And I’m not just talking about marijuana legalization but Federalism in general.

    Do we want marijuana laws to be put in the same kettle as immigration and voting laws – where the states can supersede Congress? If we demand that the feds back off on states where voters approve these other measures, then we have no argument to say that DOJ has a right to invalidate voter ID laws or anti immigration measures like were passed in Arizona. You can’t argue that the federal pot laws are stupid (they are stupid) when voters in a host of other states have declared that voter rights and immigration laws are comparably stupid. Either federalism is important and needs to be defended, or this is a states-rights free-for-all and we should cast our lot in with the Republicans.

    Obama has to walk a line here, and the apparent line that he’s walking is that when your marijuana operation becomes visible to the IRS, you’re a step too far – the federal government can see you and has to act. If you stay below that line and remain invisible to the federal government, you’re going to be okay.

    And I wouldn’t take that story out of Costa Mesa at face value. CM is teatard heaven right now and politically is pretty fucked up. The mayor owns one of the larger, more popular bars in the city just a few block up the road from those dispensaries and has viewed those as competition to his business. He secretly requested the federal raids, at the same time he was shaking down marijuana supporters for campaign money. The mayor resigned a few months after the raids took place when it was disclosed that the city council broke the law by requesting the federal assistance but not putting that request in the public record – presumably because they saw the marijuana community there as a population to fundraise off of, and because they would need their support for reelection.

    I simply don’t see how the DOJ can refuse to execute on a request to enforce federal law.

  49. 49
    👽 Martin says:

    @Raven: I wasn’t speculating. The incidents I linked to loom pretty large here. I was commenting on the overall trend that been occupying us more locally than this specific incident – which I agree could be anything. I should have been clearer on that.

  50. 50
    piratedan says:

    I believe that Squeeze’s tune “Messed Around” clocks in about 2:20… blocked from you tube at work else I’d check it out and link it up.

  51. 51
    Cassidy says:

    @Ben Franklin: Still predictable. Should I bother to aske for anything proving your assertions are are you just gonna keep making shit up and then move along when called out?

  52. 52
    Ben Franklin says:

    @👽 Martin:

    Although I see your point as to Immigration/voting rights/marijuana same kettle, there is a distinction with a significant difference which should not be conflated;

    Immigration/voting laws in rogue states are affecting the lives of whole groups of folks who have little control over their fate. These could be classified as crime because victims exist.

    Using Marijuana is a victimless crime; ergo, no criminality exists.

  53. 53
    MikeJ says:

    @Ben Franklin:

    Using Marijuana is a victimless crime; ergo, no criminality exists.

    Go read 18usc and try again.

  54. 54
  55. 55
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Ben Franklin: Honestly, this makes little sense to me. You want different federal laws for different states? Or do you want federal law changed to fit what a small number of states have indicated they want?

    Don’t get me wrong; I am in favor of decriminalization. I just don’t have a problem with the admin saying that they aren’t going to do much about stoners in the meantime.

  56. 56
    Ben Franklin says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Just fucking de-criminalize it, fer Chrissake.

  57. 57
    handsmile says:

    The horrible Connecticut school shooting rightfully dominates, but on the international scene, this is a thoroughly great piece of news:

    “Liberman to resign as foreign minister over indictment”

    Avigdor Liberman, Israel’s foreign minister and deputy prime minister, today announced his intention to resign after indictment by the Attorney General on charges of fraud and breach of public trust. Also, he’s agreed to drop his parliamentary immunity from the government’s subsequent legal proceedings.

    It remains to unfold what impact this decision will have on Israel’s parliamentary elections to be held on January 22. Liberman remains on the ballot as the leader of the extremist Yisrael Beiteinu party.

    Fascist is the correct term to use in describing Liberman’s beliefs and public policies. Bibi’s a moderate by comparison.

  58. 58
    👽 Martin says:

    @Ben Franklin:

    Using Marijuana is a victimless crime; ergo, no criminality exists.

    That’s not clear. I don’t think anyone can claim that there aren’t victims of the drug economy, from border/gang violence to simply lives destroyed due to dependence, etc. There’s a debate starting now on how to draw a line on driving while altered – how do you test for it, what should the limits be, etc. And while pot users seem much less likely to cause accidents than alcohol users, they are much more likely than non-users to cause accidents. So it’s not victimless there either.

    I think we can generally agree that across the spectrum of drugs, marijuana sits as close to victimless as you’ll find, but that doesn’t make it victimless – in fact it puts it in a similar category to alcohol and cigarettes, both categories that we are continually pushing for greater regulation and lower use because society has deemed both of those as not victimless activities. So while pot is to many of us unreasonably regulated, it’s also working against a social trend of greater regulation of similar substances.

    And the debate on legalization is beside the point – because I agree that marijuana should generally be decriminalized (at least to the degree that alcohol is). But when the major of a medium sized city (110,000 people), even in a state that has deemed the activity legal, calls up the DOJ and asks for federal intervention because a federal crime has been committed – do you think the DOJ should have said ‘no’? I do not, in any way, see how they could have. There’s a difference between not looking for violations of federal law, and straight-up refusing to enforce it. You’re saying that Obama lied about the former, when all of the evidence suggests that the feds weren’t looking at those dispensaries until other government officials asked them to intervene. So you’re wrong on the facts, at least with respect to dispensaries in Costa Mesa. I would bet you that other mayors in California, disagreeing with the state law, or unhappy with the challenges that the dispensaries sometimes present, did the very same thing in other cities – and did so because they talked with the mayor of Costa Mesa, shared ideas, and formulated similar strategies to serve their own local interests.

  59. 59
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Ben Franklin: I see this as a step in that direction. YMMV.

  60. 60
    Ben Franklin says:

    @👽 Martin:

    in fact it puts it in a similar category to alcohol and cigarettes,

    They are both legal, yet no one, NO ONE has ever died from ingesting marijuana. As to organized crime and marijuana, the reason they grow and distribute is because of the huge financial motivation. Remember Prohibition. Need I say more on that?

    all of the evidence suggests that the feds weren’t looking at those dispensaries until other government officials asked them to intervene.

    LOS ANGELES — Federal prosecutors looking to take out California’s medical marijuana shops have now set their sights on Los Angeles, where city officials have struggled to stop a blooming of dispensaries.

    The U.S. attorney’s office sued three property owners that house pot collectives and sent warning letters to 68 others as they enforce a federal law that doesn’t recognize a California initiative that legalized pot for medicinal use.

    The move Tuesday came nearly a year after federal authorities began targeting the state’s pot shops. The city’s own ban on dispensaries also is being challenged and could be overturned by voters if a referendum is placed on an upcoming ballot.

    “As today’s operations make clear, the sale and distribution of marijuana violates federal law, and we intend to enforce the law,” U.S. Attorney Andre Birotte Jr. said.

    California’s four U.S. attorneys pledged last October to curb pot collectives they said were running afoul of the law by raking in huge sums of money and serving as fronts for drug traffickers. Proponents argue the dispensaries are protected by California law that allows medicinal use of marijuana with a doctor’s recommendation.

  61. 61
  62. 62
    Ben Franklin says:

    Hmmm. Another abandoned thread…SOP.

  63. 63
    👽 Martin says:

    @Ben Franklin:

    LOS ANGELES —Federal prosecutors looking to take out California’s medical marijuana shops have now set their sights on Los Angeles, where city officials have struggled to stop a blooming of dispensaries.

    Again, this looks like city officials called the feds, just like in Costa Mesa. Take the issue up with them. I’m not arguing against legalization, even at the federal level.

    I’m arguing how should the DOJ handle cases where local officials ask for enforcement of federal laws. I’m also wondering how you ties this back to any intention by Obama, other than his usual careful attention to enforcing federal law (contrary to what the GOP claims).

  64. 64
    Ben Franklin says:

    You do realize they are being threatened by the Feds. LA is desperate for tax revenue, and closing dispensaries hurts them. Why else would they be so apeshit about this. Think about it.

  65. 65
    dcBill says:

    This one, from my band Color School, clocks in at 1:58. Blurb

  66. 66
    👽 Martin says:

    @Ben Franklin: Your own source says that city officials were trying to stop the dispensaries. You can’t site the first half of a sentence and ignore the second half.

    And yes, they are desperate for tax revenues, but LA had local laws against dispensaries. A week after that article you post, the LA city council voted to overturn the city ban on dispensaries. Costa Mesa still has a similar ban. Closing dispensaries was obviously not viewed as hurting LA given that LA city council had banned them.

    So at the time of the raid (and certainly in the months preceding it), it was illegal to run a dispensary in LA. Again, you’re looking at a conflict between local law enforcement trying to enforce local laws and calling in the feds for help. City council and their tax desire likely had nothing to do with why city officials were trying to stop the dispensaries – it was likely just the LAPD struggling to enforce city ordinances. That LA raid, BTW, appears to have been instrumental in getting the city council to reverse their position. Let’s see where things go now in LA, now that dispensaries are free of both local and state laws. Presumably now the city council views the tax revenue as more important and they’ll stop calling the feds in.

    But there still remains the problem, as I noted earlier, that if these operations get large enough to hit the IRS, that they’ll likely still get busted. Again, once you announce yourselves to the feds, either through the IRS or via local officials, I think the feds are going to be compelled to enforce federal law.

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