Everything is Bullshit

And we’re all being spoonfed:

These headlines accurately capture what’s imparted in the story-like objects over which they run, which tell the tale of the St. Louis Rams surprising a cheerleader with the return of her military husband from service overseas. As far as we can tell, every element of it is true. It could also be described rather differently.

Candace Ruocco Valentine is in fact a cheerleader for the St. Louis Rams. She made her debut this past weekend, at the very game at which her husband surprised her with his return from abroad. She’s several other things as well: a first lieutenant in the USMC (without wanting to scrutinize the gender politics of something that involves Rampage the Ram too closely, one might wonder why no headline writer went with “Husband Surprises Military Wife At Her Job”); a former White House intern who worked under Laura Bush; and a member of the Ruocco family, which is heavily involved in Illinois Republican politics.

August Valentine, meanwhile, is in fact a first lieutenant in the USMC. He made his surprise return to St. Louis, though, not from, say, the anxiety and peril of a security mission in Anbar province, but from a posting in South Korea, where combat operations wound down 62 years ago. He also happens to be not some anonymous leatherneck but a member of the galactically wealthy Busch family, which built the Anheuser-Busch corporation and, years after the sale of the business, retains incredible power in St. Louis. Valentine’s maternal grandfather, Gussie Busch, is generally credited with building the family business into the biggest brewery in the world; the Rams at one point played in a stadium named for the family.

Not the least bit surprising.






80 replies
  1. 1
    rikyrah says:

    Don’t laugh, but I was so happy to see that Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood is now available for streaming on Neflix!!

  2. 2
    jl says:

    It’s the NFL, Cole. Calm down.

  3. 3
    Hal says:

    Candace Ruocco Valentine is in fact a cheerleader for the St. Louis Rams. She made her debut this past weekend, at the very game at which her husband surprised her with his return from abroad. She’s several other things as well: a first lieutenant in the USMC (without wanting to scrutinize the gender politics of something that involves Rampage the Ram too closely, one might wonder why no headline writer went with “Husband Surprises Military Wife At Her Job”); a former White House intern who worked under Laura Bush; and a member of the Ruocco family, which is heavily involved in Illinois Republican politics.

    Are you sure this isn’t a paragraph from Bill O’Reilly’s next novel?

  4. 4
    Oatler. says:

    Next step is shooting at the TV.

  5. 5
    BGinCHI says:

    What’s the difference between a major American newspaper and toilet paper?

  6. 6
  7. 7
    gene108 says:

    I will never fully understand the point of NFL cheerleaders.

    Yeah, I get the eye candy thing, but stadiums are so big and the people on the field look so small, you can’t really see anything in detail anyway.

    Middle school, high school and college they at least do formations and stunts, so if you can’t see the detail, there’s some acrobatic movement that you can follow.

  8. 8
    benw says:

    @rikyrah: Appropriate because Mr. Rogers is the perfect antidote to media bullshit: You were a child once, too.

  9. 9
    bystander says:

    The worst crime of all is the beer. Bud stinks.

  10. 10
    Calouste says:

    Candace Ruocco Valentine is in fact a cheerleader for the St. Louis Rams. She made her debut this past weekend, at the very game at which her husband surprised her with his return from abroad.

    I would be terribly unsurprised if her first appearance also turned out to be her last.

  11. 11
    BGinCHI says:

    @gene108: The point is Team Spirit, Gene.

  12. 12
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    It’s just St Louis being St Louis John: A small town. The Busch family gets away with murder. Literally. Gussie III had his girlfriend die from an OD in his bed. “Oh noooo…. I didn’t know she had any drugs. Not me, Nononono….” I think it was Peter who pulled a mike Tyson and bit some poor saps ear off. There’s more. Including other dead girlfriends I don’t remember the details of.

  13. 13
    MattF says:

    I suppose the NFL is a playground for the wealthy– owner or player, it’s the m-o-n-e-y that matters. The rest of us, fat and ugly, can only be spectators.

  14. 14
    Joey Maloney says:

    o/t, my cat that ran away two days ago and got lost in the alleyways of Old Yafo has been found and returned to the bosom of his family. He has expressed his gratitude by taking a dump the size of a VW Passat in the shower.

    Dick.

  15. 15
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @raven: The First Sergeant in my first Battery had a 2ID right shoulder patch from serving in Korea during that period.

  16. 16
    Belafon says:

    I think there were some military things going on recently in South Korea.

    You could also describe those events this way: Two concentrations in the quantum field migrated toward each other unexpectedly after being apart.

  17. 17
    benw says:

    @benw: Dangit, link broken, can’t edit, trying again.

  18. 18
    Mr Stagger Lee says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: And another member killed an heir to a local potato chip company 30 years ago. It seems that the husband is using the Tom Cotton route the military as an springboard to politics.(I am willing to bet)

  19. 19
    gvg says:

    @Joey Maloney: It is possible that he is experiencing some gastric upset due to whatever he had to eat while lost. You might have a vet check him over.
    Jokes are a good stress reliever and it sounded very funny the way you described it. Artistic even.

  20. 20
    dedc79 says:

    @Joey Maloney: was he found hanging around Abu Hasan hoping for some leftover hummus?

  21. 21
    CONGRATULATIONS! says:

    deleted, bad WP word

  22. 22
    CONGRATULATIONS! says:

    Bullshit tastes much better when fed to you in a red, white and blue spoon.

    Remember Pat Tillman, Hero Of Afghanistan? Broke the Taliban with his football jaw and huge American genitalia? A hero until that brother of his got up in front of the entire nation and told them their God was a lie.

    Most of the few who still remember him call him a traitor on a par with Snowden, all for the crime of getting shot in the head by his own men.

  23. 23
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Mr Stagger Lee: Yeah, that tickles my memory bone now that you mention it.

  24. 24
    Gindy51 says:

    @BGinCHI: You don’t get ink stains on your ass when you wipe with TP?

  25. 25
    Paul in KY says:

    @Joey Maloney: At least it wasn’t on your bed. Because it could have been.

  26. 26
    Calouste says:

    @CONGRATULATIONS!: They named the bridge between Nevada and Arizona after him, so he’ll be remembered for a while.

  27. 27
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    O’Reilly Asks Expert If Black Lives Matter Is To Blame For Police Murders. Then Things Got Awkward.

    O’Reilly: Ok, so despite the provocative, “pigs in a blanket” and all of this business. And every time there is controversy about an officer shooting a black person they’re out there stirring the pot. You don’t feel like disturbed individuals watch this and act out.

    Moskos: There are fewer cops shot this year than last year. Are you willing to give Black Lives Matter credit for that? Cops shootings are down.

    O’Reilly: I know they are down. Slightly.

    Moskos: Seventeen percent.

    O’Reilly: But in August they are up.

    Moskos: August was a bad month. In July there were none. Overall they are down. I don’t see an epidemic there.

  28. 28
  29. 29
    KG says:

    @BGinCHI: toilet paper worth paying for is two ply

  30. 30
    raven says:

    @Belafon: A marine was most likely doing some kind of HQ duty in Seoul since there have not been and USMC units there since the end of the war.

  31. 31
    KG says:

    I mentioned a while back, the Anaheim Ducks do this thing during every home game where they honor a current or former member of the armed services. They give them a little glass trophy award type thing, put them on the jumbotron and the crowd cheers. Always made me feel weird because it seemed to fall into “the absolute least we can do” category (a $10k donation to wounded warriors or some such in the name of the honored member would be nice). But the times I went, it always seemed like a regular grunt/leatherneck type, which I suppose is better than this

  32. 32
    p.a. says:

    I know-at 3 degrees of separation- a Busch relative here in RI (last name isn’t Busch but he is a blood relative) who receives $85,000/month trust fund, elderly, divorced, no kids. 1,000 sq.ft. home, 7 yr old Chevy. Splits his time between RI, Ct, and Vegas casinos. Doesn’t like Atlantic City. No other travel, no other interests, no philanthropy. Le sigh.

  33. 33
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @MattF: The rest of us, fat and ugly, can only be spectators.

    Or not. Your choice.

  34. 34
    raven says:

    @KG: wounded warriors is a fucking scam

  35. 35
    dedc79 says:

    @KG: The DC sports teams do this as well.

  36. 36
    Tripod says:

    I always assumed people clicked the click-bait because it was worldview reinforcing.

  37. 37
    scott (the other one) says:

    You know, no matter how many of them I’ve seen, those videos of returning military surprising their family always choke me up. Every. Damn. Time. But it just occurred to me, I’m not sure I’ve ever seen one where the family wasn’t white. I’m not saying such videos don’t exist, or that none have gone viral, just that I’ve seen well over a dozen and I’m almost positive every single one has featured a white family. And given the demographics of our military, that doesn’t seem terribly likely to me.

  38. 38
    JPL says:

    Everything is Bullshit..
    As we know Kim Davis is on her fourth marriage, even so I had to read this a few times…

    Court records obtained by US News and World Report show Davis divorced three times, first in 1994 and then again in 2006 and 2008. She gave birth to twins who were fathered by her third husband five months after divorcing her first husband. Those twins were adopted by her second husband, according to US News.
    Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com

  39. 39
    germy shoemangler says:

    @BGinCHI:

    What’s the difference between a major American newspaper and toilet paper?

    Absorbency?

  40. 40
    raven says:

    @scott (the other one): I came home 46 years ago tomorrow and went to see Santana at the Fillmore!

  41. 41
    boatboy_srq says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: 1%er entitlement in a nutshell. Went to the link and nearly caffeinated my desktop at all the saccharine photos of this “event”. Is there a BJ Keyboard Replacement Fund?

  42. 42
    Enhanced Voting Techinques says:

    @BGinCHI:

    What’s the difference between a major American newspaper and toilet paper?

    Toilet paper is not designed to savage one’s bottom during use.

  43. 43
    Taiko says:

    @raven: Using one of my (very seldom) de-lurks to say my father, an Army infantry captain then, was stationed on the DMZ with 2nd Div. during that period. Between that tour, and 2 others in Vietnam, he always maintained that Korea was, by a significant amount, far more intense and dangerous at that time. In one incident, possibly one of those mentioned in the article, he lost a number of men, and it disturbed him more than any other, as I recall.

  44. 44
    boatboy_srq says:

    @scott (the other one): You’ve stumbled on the key to Reichwing “Support Our Troops” propaganda. It’s very easy to send Those People’s kids and spouses off to fight and die for oil spite Freedom and Democracy when the only ones you see coming home alive look just like you.

  45. 45
    germy shoemangler says:

    PROVIDENCE, R.I. — An anchor for Fox News is suing Hasbro for more than $5 million over a toy hamster that shares her name — and possibly even her resemblance.

    Harris Faulkner sued Hasbro this week over its plastic Harris Faulkner hamster, sold as part of the Pawtucket, Rhode Island-based company’s popular “Littlest Pet Shop” line. She says the toy wrongfully appropriates her name and persona, harms her professional credibility as a journalist and is an insult.

    Julie Duffy, a Hasbro spokeswoman, said the company doesn’t comment on litigation, but she took issue with the lawsuit’s contention that the doll is a “known choking hazard that risks harming small children.”

    “The Littlest Pet Shop product identified, and all products in the Littlest Pet Shop line, meet and exceed all safety standards,” Duffy said.

    Faulkner is seeking $5 million in damages and attorney fees, plus any profits the company made on the toy.

  46. 46
    Mike J says:

    Having a lousy job doesn’t make you a hero.

  47. 47
    boatboy_srq says:

    @germy shoemangler: “Fox News Anchorperson Mistaken for Toy Hamster: Film at 11.” Or is it the other way around?

  48. 48
    raven says:

    @Taiko: We were direct arty support for the 2nd ID while the rest of the division was at Casey and TDC. I know that the Blue House Raiders came through out AO on their way to Seoul since that sector was the closest to the capitol. When they took the Pueblo and then 32 came across we tight for sure we were going to full blown war. We would have lasted about a day had Joe attacked. That was pretty tense.

  49. 49
    Riley's Enabler says:

    @Joey Maloney: Thanks for the tea-spraying laugh; glad your darling dickhead is home safe.

    I once gave my cat a flea treatment and she had an allergic reaction. In order to SAVE HER LIFE the ex gave her an immediate scrubbing in the bathtub, to which she responded by slouching up the hallway onto our bed and taking a giant dump – while maintaining eye contact- on the pillows. She lived many more years after that but the pillows did not survive.

  50. 50
    trollhattan says:

    Speaking of military-related lies, stumbled across “Green Zone” last night. Had to record it ’cause I wasn’t staying up that late, but if it holds up after the promising start it might be one of the better Iraq invasion flicks. The surround had me ducking between the sofa cushions. Anyone here see it?

  51. 51
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Enhanced Voting Techinques: I see you’ve never visited Russia.

  52. 52
    Jeffro says:

    By the way, did you all know “Denali” is Kenyan for “black power”? I never knew that before.

  53. 53
    Doug R says:

    back before the seahawks joined the league the Rams used to be my favorite team. They’re threatening to move back to LA. with shenanigans like this they can stay in St Louis

  54. 54
    Calouste says:

    @germy shoemangler: IANAL, but don’t they open themselves up there to a defamation counter suit, even of they would win the original one?

  55. 55
    celticdragonchick says:

    @raven: I was at Camp Mobil right across the MSR from Casey in 1993-1994, and I was on guard duty the night Clinton put us on war alert for a possible attack on the reactor up at Yongbyon.

    That night was fucking insane.

  56. 56
    scav says:

    @Jeffro: GMC has a lot to answer for. Globally Menacing Communists, you know. Plus, remember Ford? You could have any color you wanted: so long as it was black. The rot is deep.

  57. 57
    raven says:

    @celticdragonchick: The pucker factor.

  58. 58
    catclub says:

    @Jeffro: The more accurate translation is “blackity-black-black power, shoved down your throat!”

  59. 59
    lgerard says:

    @raven:

    A marine was most likely doing some kind of HQ duty in Seoul since there have not been and USMC units there since the end of the war.

    Maybe he was a “liquor officer” like Pat Robertson

  60. 60
    Jeffro says:

    @scav: OMG this explains the auto bailout…also, black helicopters, get it?

    “Denali” can also be rearranged to spell “ad line”…”lean i.d.” (like at the polls?)…”I [am] [bin] Laden”…let’s see what wingnuttia makes of those…

  61. 61
    the Conster says:

    Candy Valentine? Really? Stripper name if I ever heard one.

  62. 62
    Jeffro says:

    @catclub: I do hope that’s what they think (over and over and over) when wingers see it while on vacation…

  63. 63
    trollhattan says:

    @Doug R:
    You have to admit partnering with the Raiders in some LA suburb stadium would be a phenomenal concentration of Pure Suck.

  64. 64
    trollhattan says:

    @the Conster:
    What’s the rule again for picking your pr0n name? She must have had a cat named Candy and lived on Valentine Avenue.

  65. 65
    Cervantes says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    I see you’ve never visited Russia.

    !

    Visited the Soviet Union many times — know what you mean.

    And on my first visit to the new Russia, checking into the most decent hotel in Moscow, went up to the suite only to have the front door fall out off its hinges and on me.

  66. 66
    Jparente says:

    @KG: Same with the Yankees. They gush and gush over the military but my guess is that none of their top management ever put on a uniform. I know Seienbrenner never did. He had “other things to do” during Korea.
    The term “Rich Man’s War. Poor man’s fight” is right on the money. It always has been.
    I worked in broadcast TV for years and I always thought these “honor the troops” displays to be more than a bit phony.

  67. 67
    Jparente says:

    @p.a.: Very sad but not surprising.

  68. 68
    dr. luba says:

    @Cervantes: Had that happen with a cabinet door, now that you mention it. Ah, travel in the USSR! Hotels with no water (hot, cold, whatever), no heat between May and September, no matter the weather, bath towels the size of a dishcloth, and a brand new 20 story hotel with two elevators, capacity 4 people each. Best of all, that same new hotel had a problem with the room doors–someone had drilled the holes for the door knobs too low. No worries, they just drilled a second hole……

  69. 69
    Cervantes says:

    @dr. luba:

    !

    And speaking of water — I remember the expensive bottled variety smelling of fish.

  70. 70
    catclub says:

    speaking of spoon fed, this will take a big spoon.

    https://twitter.com/paul_w_hoffman/status/638888254469574656

    Kevin Drum suggested a language resemblance to Palin.

    Sagrado-itis of the mouth. (Red Sky at Morning)

  71. 71
    Applejinx says:

    @scott (the other one): When Gordon Ramsay and Hell’s Kitchen did this type of glurge, the military family was black.

    I got nothin’ more than that. I had two cats and yesterday the little ginger jerk-boy got splatted by a truck. Someone removed the body before I saw the scene, but he’d been lying in the street and the spot was right where he might have taken a nap, and the stain on the pavement was and is horrific, three colors of carnage and splatter. One thing about it, it had to be very quick. It was like a bomb hit him, just horrific.

    He puked on the porch that morning, so that and the stain are all I have of him at this point. If it was a neighbor that hit him, they must be gutted because he was popular with the whole street. I may never know.

    I’m gonna pick up the puke-hairball when it’s dried out, and the first time I make a fire in the woodstove I’m giving it a ceremonial cremation. There’s not enough of the stain left to pick up anything and I’m not at all sure I’d want to have dealt with that.

    One thing about it is I can imagine the little hellion being pretty smug about the epicness of his demise. Not really, naturally, but if he was a human being he’d definitely have been proud of the sheer carnage and brutality of it. This cat deserved Valkyries.

  72. 72
    caroln says:

    @Applejinx: I’m so sorry.

  73. 73
    Bitter Scribe says:

    Even when those reunion videos are legit (i.e., the servicemember came back from a war zone), I always feel a little guilty and even resentful watching them. Yeah, it’s heart-tugging to see a little kid’s overwhelming joy when Mommy or Daddy walks into the classroom unexpectedly. But it’s a highly manipulative form of heart tugging. How much anxiety did that kid suffer, wondering if Dad or Mom would make it home safely? Who was responsible for that anxiety? Why should we benignly accept and be entertained by a happy ending in one particular case, when so many suffered so much grief?

  74. 74
    Beeb says:

    My deepest condolences, Applejinx. That’s awful.

  75. 75
    redshirt says:

    You’re right it’s always white people, even though the US military is highly diverse.

  76. 76
    redshirt says:

    Also too, of course everything is bullshit. We live nested within like 42 layers of abstraction and manipulation. Nothing we do means anything. We’re all literally atoms in space.

  77. 77
    SWMBO says:

    @Applejinx: There are no words. I’m so sorry this happened to your little Valkyrie. Here’s hoping he’s playing in Valhalla.

  78. 78
    Paul in KY says:

    @Applejinx: I’m very sorry to hear that, Applejinx. As you said, it must have been very quick.

  79. 79
    Applejinx says:

    Thanks guys. Definitely kind of cool that Balloon Juice, a total politics-and-internets shitshow, is more compassionate and emotionally available than my own family. But then that’s why I had two cats, to have a family that cared.

    And that’s why I keep coming back here. <3

  80. 80
    Jparente says:

    @Applejinx: I am so sorry for your loss. My dogs mean the world to me. I know how you feel, losing Valkyrie.

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