Open Thread: Sixty Pounds of Something in A Forty-Pound Sack

Nope, sounds to me like Mr. Trump may just have ingested sixty pounds of something stronger than Jeff Sessions’ “demon weed”…

President Trump
told reporters on Air Force One on Wednesday that his proposed border wall would have to be “transparent” to prevent Americans from being struck and killed by 60-pound sacks of drugs tossed over from the Mexican side.

“One of the things with the wall is you need transparency. You have to be able to see through it,” Trump said. He continued:

In other words, if you can’t see through that wall — so it could be a steel wall with openings, but you have to have openings because you have to see what’s on the other side of the wall.

And I’ll give you an example. As horrible as it sounds, when they throw the large sacks of drugs over, and if you have people on the other side of the wall, you don’t see them — they hit you on the head with 60 pounds of stuff? It’s over. As crazy as that sounds, you need transparency through that wall.

Trump acknowledges that the scenario he paints is somewhat “crazy,” but there is a kernel of truth to it. For decades, drug smugglers have employed an arsenal of sometimes cartoonish tactics — from tricycles to narco-subs to drone delivery — to ferry their wares north of the border.

One such tool is the drug catapult — or more accurately, the drug trebuchet: a medieval-era device capable of slinging heavy objects, typically marijuana bales, across hundreds of yards…

SUNY-Albany homeland security expert Brandon Behlendorf told Wired this week that it’s nearly impossible to design a wall tall or “transparent” enough to stop a well-built trebuchet.

“They’re launching drugs not five feet from the wall, or 10 feet from the wall, where a transparent wall would help,” Behlendorf said. “They’re launching it 100 feet over the wall, 150 feet over the wall. No amount of transparency is going to help you in that context.”…

135 replies
  1. 1
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    Elizabeth Spiers totally destroys Donald Trump in a single tweet.

  2. 2
  3. 3
    Citizen Alan says:

    I, for one, I’m completely unsurprised to learn that Shitgibbon wants his wall to have glory holes.

  4. 4
    debbie says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    You know how Trump loves to throw money around!

    I think he’s on much stronger stuff than Session’s demon weed. He started that snuffling thing again at that press conference with Macron.

  5. 5

    I feel like we’re living in Crazy World.

  6. 6
    Citizen_X says:

    I’ve got it: build the wall out of transparent aluminum!

    “Now, Dr. McCoy, how d’ya know Trump didn’t invent the stuff?”

  7. 7
    The Dangerman says:

    25 (th Amendment) or 60 to 40?

  8. 8
    The Lodger says:

    @debbie: I can hear Sessions’ voice now: “Hey! Mr. President. Get your own damn demon weed and leave mine alone.”

  9. 9
    Baud says:

    @A Ghost to Most: Holy cow, that’s too good to be true.

  10. 10
    Baud says:

    The Emperor Has No Walls.

  11. 11

    The “Big Beautiful Wall” has devolved into a dinky chain link fence from Home Depot.

  12. 12
    Amir Khalid says:

    Trump acknowledges that the scenario he paints is somewhat “crazy”


  13. 13
    Bruuuuce says:

    I don’t know if anybody mentioned this downstairs, but I have been having great fun and giggles with Push Trump Off a Cliff Again.

  14. 14
    scav says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: Slap a little gilt on the chains, add the massive T R U M P letters, beeeee-oooo-teeee achieved.

  15. 15
    lollipopguild says:

    Sounds like trump has been snorting some Peruvian Marching Powder.

  16. 16
    Mike in DC says:

    But what if the Mexican drug lords use sappers, battering rams and siege towers? We shouldnt worry solely about catapults and trebuchets, but should instead be prepared for all tools and tactics of medieval siege warfare.

  17. 17
    gene108 says:

    If I was in charge of getting The Wall built, I would make sure it is at least 1000 feet high and dug 1000 feet into the ground.

    No one is going over or under my wall.

  18. 18
    p.a. says:

    @Citizen_X: Damn. Beat me to it.

  19. 19
    zhena gogolia says:


    Very Zen.

  20. 20

    @scav: Or he just may build nothing and just put a sign* that there’s a 40 foot wall there.

    *In English, cause that’s the way they roll.

  21. 21
    p.a. says:

    You know, if we build spring loaded 20 foot extensions that operate via i.r. when anyone approaches from the Messican side…

    or a giant badger.

  22. 22

    So when are the Republicans planning a Washington Durbar for their new Emperor Putin? You know, like the Delhi Durbar for Queen Vicky. Hey he can even arrive on an elephant.

  23. 23
    Baud says:

    But what will protect us from the giant hollow horse offered as a gift to Trump?

  24. 24
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Citizen Alan: Thread over. Time to go home.

  25. 25
    Yoda Dog says:

    God, he’s such a tedious dipshit..

    I can’t even take trumpers seriously enough to laugh at them anymore.

  26. 26

    @Yoda Dog: I stopped finding this shit funny after T won the R nomination.

  27. 27
    justawriter says:

    Too bad no one has invented a device for recording images and transmitting them through wires, or possibly even without wires, to another device for viewing. We can call it a video camera and the receiving device a television – that means far seeing, you know. I hereby patent these ideas and am sending them to our peerless leader who will undoubtedly shower me with billions for my astounding imagination.

  28. 28

    @A Ghost to Most:
    I’ve mentioned them before. I wish they represented a much bigger slice of Southern and gun culture. Their version of ‘It is all about class war’ isn’t ‘So stop talking about racism,’ but instead ‘So stick up for your brothers and sisters of every race and creed.’

  29. 29
    MJS says:

    Who’s getting hit on the head with th he drugs? The people waiting to receive them? Then that’s a bonus, right? Or Border Patrol? Why would they throw drugs over if there is border enforcement in the area? Final question – why didn’t anyone ask the idiot these questions when he was vomiting this nonsense?

  30. 30
    dmsilev says:

    Countries that build glass walls shouldn’t have stones thrown at them. Or something like that anyway.

  31. 31


    Why would they throw drugs over if there is border enforcement in the area?

    You see, if the Wall isn’t transparent they won’t be able to see the Border Patrol on the US side.

  32. 32
    dmsilev says:


    If I was in charge of getting The Wall built, I would make sure it is at least 1000 feet high and dug 1000 feet into the ground.

    As the renowned documentary _Pacific Rim_ made clear, such a wall would be extremely vulnerable to drug-smuggling kaiju.

  33. 33
    sukabi says:

    Anne, you should add Schiff’s trolling to your tweet storm it’s a thing of beauty…

    Adam Schiff ✔ @RepAdamSchiff
    If an American is hit over head with a big sack of drugs flying over the wall, would it be covered by Trumpcare, or would Mexico pay for it?
    7:59 AM – 15 Jul 2017
    8,733 8,733 Retweets 19,704 19,704 likes

  34. 34
    sukabi says:

    @A Ghost to Most: saw that earlier this morning….applaud their anti racism and taking on the klan…

  35. 35

    @sukabi: Obviously, Mexico would pay for it. Silly Congresscitter Schiff.

  36. 36
    gene108 says:


    Mexicans don’t have kaiju, only the Japanese have kaiju. So no problem. Though America does have King Kong, he would never smuggle drugs.

    Also, you should see the wall I’d build on the northern border.

    I realized, after watching The Weather Channel for many hours, the thing we get from Canada the most is cold Arctic air. I propose to build a wall so huge Canada will be forced to keep all its cold air and we’d be warm and toasty.

  37. 37
    Another Scott says:

    @Bruuuuce: Oooh. Volcano! :-)



  38. 38
    bystander says:

    Susie Madrak agrees that Macron was trolling Trump with Daft Punk. It’s so much more enjoyable if you’re thinking Trump is being humiliated and he doesn’t even know it.

    All of a sudden, I cannot comment or like anything on facebook. If I try to comment the comment section collapses. Could I be fb hacked?

  39. 39
    zhena gogolia says:


    She says it’s the “Red Army Choir,” but it’s worse than that. It’s the Ministry of Internal Affairs choir.

  40. 40
    Citizen Alan says:

    I just had a thought that I suddenly find incredibly amusing. What if Trump believes that most drug smuggling is done through the clever use of catapults because his dealer told him that as a joke?

  41. 41
    bystander says:

    @zhena gogolia: With the Crown Prosecutor conducting?

  42. 42
    Ruckus says:

    @Citizen Alan:
    That goes in for comment of the year.
    I can’t tell if I laughing or crying. Or both.

  43. 43
    hovercraft says:


    The “Big Beautiful Wall” has devolved into a dinky chain link fence from Home Depot.

    Not beautiful and classy enough, I envision a giant clear wall made out of bullet proof glass or plexiglass glass, no one has ever seen anything like it before, and if he figures out how to incorporate solar into it, it will go down as the most beautiful, ingenious, brilliant wall ever built in the history of the universe. It will be a monument to the greatness of the 45th president!

  44. 44
    Barney says:

    @Baud: another trebuchet, of course:

    Trump needs the transparent wall so people can shout “run away!”

  45. 45
    Ruckus says:

    Can gold spray paint from a can be made transparent?

  46. 46
    efgoldman says:


    I propose to build a wall so huge Canada will be forced to keep all its cold air and we’d be warm and toasty.

    But then Gin&Tonic and Omnes would have to climb it to get to the skiing and break their wrist and leg into a zillion pieces, respectively. And their medical care would have to be in Canada, by Loonies.
    Oh, wait.

  47. 47
    LurkerNoLonger says:

    Anytime this fucking idiot mentions this stupid fucking wall I get furious. It’s so fucking stupid and anyone who thinks anything resembling what he talks about is actually going to be built is a fucking idiot too.

  48. 48
    Yoda Dog says:

    @schrodingers_cat: I never found his ascendancy funny either, for the record.

  49. 49
    Mary G says:

    Of course the holes will make it easier for people to just climb the wall…

  50. 50
    Yarrow says:

    @sukabi: Adam Schiff’s twitter feed is excellent. But Auntie Maxine just takes it to a whole new level.

    Has anyone checked on Sean Spicer?— Maxine Waters (@MaxineWaters) July 14, 2017

    Everyone in France was talking about Don Jr's emails and why he didn't turn them over to the FBI— Maxine Waters (@MaxineWaters) July 14, 2017


  51. 51
    Aleta says:

    No one could have predicted the wall would be complicated.

    They said taking money from the Russians was simple.

    If I did lie, which I didn’t, it was accidental, because that’s possible.

  52. 52
    Yarrow says:

    @Yoda Dog:

    I can’t even take trumpers seriously enough to laugh at them anymore.

    Maybe because long after Trump is gone they’ll still be here and we’ll still have to deal with them.

  53. 53
    efgoldman says:

    @Yoda Dog:

    I never found his ascendancy funny either

    Nothing about him, his grifter family, his background, his “election”, is funny or humorous.
    Having said that: the opportunities for cynical, political black humor are both endless and appropriate.
    It is one way in which people who lived in fiercely oppressive societies dealt.
    The fact that we (and others) get to do it, as cruelly, humorously and freely as we do (on all sides, even though the first truly funny RWNJ is yet to be born) is a testament that yes, the constitution, bill of rights, and especially the first amendment are still out there, limping along but still alive.
    It also helps – A LOT! – to banish the defeatism and despair.

  54. 54
    GregB says:


    He’s smart and never broadcasts his strategy to the enemy.

  55. 55
    Baud says:

    @Yarrow: Oh, snap!

  56. 56
    Baud says:

    @efgoldman: Exactly. There is nothing funny about Trump. But if you can’t laugh in the face of your would-be oppressers, they will become your actual oppressers.

  57. 57
    Ruckus says:

    @Citizen Alan:
    Do you think his dealer is the one person he pays on time, every time?

  58. 58


    Mexicans don’t have kaiju, only the Japanese have kaiju. So no problem. Though America does have King Kong, he would never smuggle drugs.

    Yes, but Mexico has the chupacabra, which is a fearsome drug smuggler and won’t be deterred by any little wall.

  59. 59
    🌷 Martin says:

    Well, as the well-worn saying goes, democracy dies not with a bang but by being hit in the head by an imaginary 60lb bag of drugs thrown over an opaque wall.

    But it’s nice of Trump to admit that he wall doesn’t do shit to stop drugs from coming into the country. It just stops people from dying due to ballistic damage from drugs coming into the country.

  60. 60
    Dr. Ronnie James, D.O. says:

    I hate to have to keep pointing this out, but Mexico also has not one but *two* borders with large navigable bodies of water that also touch the US.

    But smugglers would never use boats/ submarines, so I guess s’all good.

  61. 61
    Gvg says:

    It sounds to me like lots of actual smart people and experts have been trying to explain to Trump without antagonizing him, why the Wall is stupid and won’t work. Then since he is a moron who loves his own opinion, he mangles what they tell him and comes up with something that makes even less sense.
    In the end what will stop it I think is the cost. Confiscating that much land and paying compensation costs a lot when Congress wants tax cuts.

  62. 62
    🌷 Martin says:

    @Dr. Ronnie James, D.O.: Thank god Republicans believe Mexicans are too stupid to fly a plane, or we’d have SAM sites all across the southern border.

  63. 63
    🌷 Martin says:

    @Roger Moore: All countries have kaiju. Mexico is simply better at keeping theirs under control. Let that be a warning.

  64. 64
    Redshift says:


    Though America does have King Kong, he would never smuggle drugs.

    I dunno, I could imagine him developing chronic pain after all that fighting he’s done, and there’s no way Trumpcare would pay for the massive quantity of painkillers he’d need.

  65. 65
    Glidwrith says:

    @Bruuuuce: I am giggling madly. The fourth scenario is the most fun!

  66. 66
    efgoldman says:


    But if you can’t laugh in the face of your would-be oppressers, they will become your actual oppressers.

    Plus, the whole grifter bunch is self-satirizing.
    Honestly, how many times a day do we ::facepalm:: or ::headdesk:: followed by “he/they didn’t really….”

  67. 67
    sm*t cl*de says:

    a steel wall with openings

    We used to call that a “fence”.


    Mexicans don’t have kaiju

    I saw a documentary to the contrary.

  68. 68
    Woodrowfan says:

    @Ruckus: and the Russian mob.

  69. 69
    Baud says:

    @efgoldman: Yep. It is important, however, never to regard Trump or the GOP as a source of entertainment. Entertainment has societal value. Not these guys. I’d happily surrender a chuckle or two to end their movement once and for all.

  70. 70
    JMG says:

    Don’t know about elsewhere, but much of the fentamyl here in New England is coming from Asia and being shipped either by ship, then car, or eventually just sent as packages via UPS or the Postal Service.

  71. 71
    Yarrow says:

    @Baud: Yep. This is where people went wrong early on, especially the media. If he’d been taking seriously and given the same scrutiny other candidates got we might not be in this situation. Remember how the Huffington Post said they wouldn’t cover him under Politics but only under Entertainment? Of course it’s a sign of what matters to the media–eyeballs and clicks. He was political entertainment and he made them money.

  72. 72
    Mike in NC says:

    Saw a reference this morning to the novel “Ship of Fools” which was made into a movie circa 1965. I’ll see if Netflix has it since it might be relevant to the current times.

  73. 73

    Maybe next Trump will suggest the Navy move from steam catapults to drug trebuchets.

  74. 74
    Yarrow says:

    The Trump campaign began paying Don Jr's lawyer about two weeks before the email story broke, per new FEC filing— Lachlan Markay (@lachlan) July 15, 2017


  75. 75
    Baud says:

    @Yarrow: I hate the media, but I can see making that decision early on. Not after the first few primaries.

  76. 76
    WaterGirl says:

    @Mike in NC: I don’t know how old you are, but we used to laugh at McHale’s Navy because they were mostly idiots. Nothing fun about watching the evil, sociopathic idiots who are now in control of all 3 branches of government, not to mention the statehouses.

    Ugh. Somebody had a long-term strategy, and it apparently wasn’t us.

  77. 77
    WaterGirl says:

    @Yarrow: What’s the significance of that?

  78. 78
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka The Hope of the Universe) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @🌷 Martin: Just like the border between North and South Korea. Maybe even the American equivalent of the Maginot Line

  79. 79
    Brachiator says:


    .In the end what will stop it I think is the cost. Confiscating that much land and paying compensation costs a lot when Congress wants tax cuts.

    Doesn’t matter. The two things that Trump supporters have consistently demanded, and absolutely must have, is a border wall and a Muslim ban. For them, these are tangible proofs that the government has heard them, and the main thing that separates Trump from other Republicans. And Trump’s repeated boast that he will make Mexico pay for the wall is an extra dash of satisfying humiliation for hated illegal immigrants.

    Even a master of bullshit like Trump will have a hard time backing away from these two central promises.

  80. 80
    Yarrow says:

    @Baud: I thought it was a bad idea at the time. He entered the race. Treat him like a serious candidate. Pretending he was a joke and putting him on the entertainment pages just meant he was judged differently. Since he was running for the highest office in the land, he should have been judged on the same playing field.

  81. 81
    Yarrow says:

    @WaterGirl: Using campaign funds for personal use is an FEC violation.

  82. 82
    jl says:

    Trump must have heard Steve King raving and frothing at the mouth on Fox News about some fever dream. I guess with their cantaloupe sized calves, those Mexican fiends just drop kick 60 pound bags of weed over the border walls.

    And Obama was so in over his head, he didn’t even put up warning signs on the wall that is there already. Thanks, Obama!

    Gallup tracking poll says 38 percent of the country approves of job this toxic dong, or not doing, or doing so badly it would better that he do nothing at all.

  83. 83
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka The Hope of the Universe) 🗳 🌷 says:


    And Trump’s repeated boast that he will make Mexico pay for the wall is an extra dash of satisfying humiliation for hated illegal immigrants.

    That would never happen. Could he realistically threaten war with Mexico to pay up? My hunch is that he’s too cowardly

  84. 84
    HuCat says:

    Sixty pounds of something in a forty pound sack? You know what Doug would say, “Shaboom, Shhboom… badada, badada, badada, badada”

  85. 85
    Baud says:

    @Yarrow: Fair enough. It obviously wouldn’t be something we would even think about if he had flamed out like Scott Walker.

  86. 86
    Yarrow says:

    @Brachiator: He could build 20 feet of wall on some south Texas or Arizona property near the border but not at the border. Do a bunch of photo ops with Border Patrol people. Say the wall is being built. Drop it as a topic and his dumbass supporters would believe him that he’s “building the wall.” He could make a fake check from Mexico, hold it up like a lottery winner and they’d believe him.

    All he really needs to do is go Wag the Dog on it and it would work.

  87. 87
    WaterGirl says:

    @Yarrow: Thanks, I hadn’t caught that it was the campaign that was paying for the lawyer.

  88. 88
    Baud says:

    @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka The Hope of the Universe) 🗳 🌷: He’s not too cowardly to talk out of his ass about anything. At this point, however, I don’t know if even Mexico takes him seriously.

  89. 89
    Yarrow says:

    @Baud: Yep. The media is totally complicit. Trump has always known how to work them and he kept doing it. They didn’t take him seriously–to be fair most people didn’t–but they had an obligation to take him seriously since their job is to inform the citizenry.

    David Farhenthold (sp?) won a Pulitzer for doing work that all of the investigative media outlets should have been doing. He did good work, but that should have been the baseline for all of them. Instead he was pretty much the only one and in the end they all lauded his work. Where WERE they? They could have done it too, but picked some different areas to look at instead of Trump donations. It wasn’t rocket science. It was just basic reporting. Sure, it took digging and work. But that’s their fucking job.

  90. 90
    Baud says:

    @Yarrow: Agree completely. We’re essentially their slaves because we need them to do their job now. But they bear a lot of responsibility for this mess, so much so that I’m not always that upset when Trump makes fools of them.

  91. 91
    debbie says:


    This is why I think Stephen Colbert is performing a real public service for us.

  92. 92
    Baud says:

    @debbie: I don’t usually follow the late night folks, but I just started following him. He is a treasure. Nothing tentative or halfway about what he says.

  93. 93
    Yarrow says:

    @Baud: Same. He knows how to play them–he’s been doing it his whole life. It can be kind of funny. But it also shines a light on just how corrupt they are too. Their job is to inform the citizenry but since it’s a for-profit media and they want and need to make money, they’re really beholden to the larger corporations that own them.

    Trump brought in eyeballs, so they didn’t want to expose him and have people lose faith in him and then he’d go away. They wanted to play it right on the edge, keep him in the race so they’d have everyone watching, and then Hillary would win. Oops. Trump’s win has exposed their greed and cravenness in a way I’m not sure much else could have.

  94. 94
    Yarrow says:

    @debbie: He is! I’ve taken to watching his intro clips in the morning. I still miss his original show. Genius.

  95. 95

    @Baud: and gladly accepted. Well played

  96. 96
    Brachiator says:

    @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka The Hope of the Universe) 🗳 🌷:

    .That would never happen. Could he realistically threaten war with Mexico to pay up? My hunch is that he’s too cowardly

    Of course it’s an empty boast. But his supporters eat it up. And it has caused distress in Mexico. Some of their political leaders have had problems for not reacting somehow to Trump’s nonsense, and it has had a negative impact on the national political mood.

    I could see Trump trying to come up with some idiot math in some trade deal or treaty with Mexico, and claim that it represented a payment for the wall. As long as he is president, he will milk this issue.

  97. 97
    Baud says:

    @Yarrow: Not just the corporate media though. I remember Cole got into a tweet battle once with David Sirota, who was acting the same way (in terms of focusing mostly on criticizing Hillary)

  98. 98
    jimmiraybob says:

    The only sensible border wall solution is a wall of fire. Picture a 100-foot wide fire pit along the entire border. It could be fueled by coal. Win Win.

  99. 99
    Baud says:

    @jimmiraybob: The Great Southern Tire Fire. Genius!

  100. 100
    WaterGirl says:

    @jimmiraybob: I think you’re on to something.

  101. 101

    You are incorrect, BUT, only because Trump has already gone above and beyond in a way that tickles their little toesies. It’s this ICE shit. Every time we hear a story and go “Jesus, that’s disgusting,” they get a warm glow in their racist souls. A consistent theme in their discussions of him is that he has already delivered in a way no previous politician ever has. They don’t tell you HOW, but he’s only delivered one thing.


    Where WERE they?

    Venting their hatred of Hillary Clinton.

  102. 102
    Brachiator says:


    .The media is totally complicit. Trump has always known how to work them and he kept doing it. They didn’t take him seriously–to be fair most people didn’t–but they had an obligation to take him seriously since their job is to inform the citizenry.

    The media is not a monolith. Some journalists never bought his BS, but of course, Trump would avoid them and go to the ones willing to give him play.

    Nobody had an obligation to take him seriously. Nobody. Hell, even after he won the nomination, brilliant minds here and elsewhere insisted that his end game was to drop out and start his own tv network.

    Also, some want to believe that the media has some special magic power to do good, that there would have been some mystical story or revelation that would have stopped Trump in his tracks. Sorry. He spent a lifetime cultivating his grifter reputation, and after a certain point, his supporters refused to react to any negative revelation.

  103. 103
    debbie says:


    Not that my whole life depends on late night comedians, but David Letterman often eviscerated Trump when he appeared on the show — to his face. If you haven’t seen the interviews, they’re worth digging up.

    Funny that funny guys seem to be the bravest!

  104. 104
    Yarrow says:

    @Baud: There will always be people on all sides of the spectrum. What changed this time was the amplification and targeting. Russia played us right good on that. The story was out there and the media that had the resources to investigate it did not even look in that direction.

  105. 105
    Schlemazel says:

    You, sir, are a genius and should be on hair furor’s (I can’t bear to call him that other thing) advisor team

    Make America Grate Again

  106. 106
    Kay says:

    Greg Sargent‏Verified account @ThePlumLineGS 10h10 hours ago
    Wow. GOP gov Kasich’s office says @VP Pence is lying about his state’s Medicaid expansion. It’s an ugly lie, too:

    Pence is lying, but of course he is. Of all the dumb conservative arguments against Medicaid, this is the dumbest.

    They want to take away Medicaid because people have to wait for care. In this case not even that is true (Pence is lying) but even if it were true, WTF?

    So they replace that imperfect system with…nothing. They won’t be waiting for health care because they just won’t get any, ever. Saves a lot of time and aggravation.

    I made canvass phone calls for Ted Strickland in Ohio in 2010 and I heard a version of this from voters. I was told more than once that the person didn’t support Obamacare because there would be “too many” people at health care facilities. There isn’t enough “health care” to go around- there’s a set amount and once it’s used up it’s gone.

    People are horrible, they really are. They’ll tell you things like this straight out. Not shy about stepping over the corpse of their fellow man to get a next-day appointment for their hangnail treatment, I must say.

  107. 107
    Felonius Monk says:

    The Emperor has No Clothes Wall.

    There lives an emperor who cares only about his wall and about showing it off. One day he heard from two swindlers that they could build the finest, yuugest wall from the most beautiful material. This material, they said, also had the special capability that it was invisible to anyone who was either stupid or not fit for his position.

    Being a bit nervous about whether he himself would be able to see the wall, the emperor first sent his two trusted sons and his son-in-law to see it. Of course, none of the three would admit that they could not see the wall and so they praised it. All the citizens had also heard of the wall and were interested to learn how stupid their emperor-suporting neighbors were.

    The emperor then allowed himself to visit his new wall and paraded along the border, never admitting that he was too unfit and stupid to see the wall. For he was afraid that the other people would think that he was stupid.

    Of course, all his idiotic voter base wildly praised the magnificent wall of the emperor, afraid to admit that they could not see it, until a small child said:

    “But there is no wall there”!

    This was whispered from person to person until everyone in the crowd was shouting that the emperor had not built a wall. The emperor heard the uproar, but could not admit they were correct. So he held his head high and crossed the border into Mexico never to be seen or heard from again.

  108. 108
    jl says:

    @debbie: I don’t watch much TV, except for sports and few good news shows. So, mostly just clips that are good enough to get highlighted on youtube. But IIRC, and from my limited exposure, the late night comedians did a much better job of informing the country about what Trump was about than the corporate news media. I think the corporate suits and producers have a big role in the major corporate news outlets, and the media news reader and pundit celebs are much more pathetically obedient corporate hacks than the entertainers are. At least two corporate media execs came out and said that they were covering every toxic and idiotic thing Trump did because it meant ratings, and that was more important to them than providing objective news and analysis. Our corporate media news programming is deeply corrupt.

  109. 109
    Yarrow says:

    @Brachiator: The media’s job is to inform the citizenry. They failed. They have been failing due to their laziness of reading press releases and insistence on sticking to botthsidesdoit-ism. By taking him seriously I mean treating him as what he said he was – a presidential candidate. They failed at that. They treated him as a joke, an entertainer, a buffoon, a wonder. Anything but a serious presidential candidate. They failed us. They failed themselves.


    Funny that funny guys seem to be the bravest!

    There’s a long history of the court jester being the one to speak the truth to the monarch.

  110. 110
    Aleta says:

    @Yarrow: That methodical research is maybe not as attractive to the kind of journalists coming out of schools today. More fun to fly somewhere and eat in a diner. I think the type of teachers at the journalism schools matters, and also the influence of business and marketing on what’s being taught.

    Fahrenthold said that a paper or media company has to want to commit to the money, time and staff it takes to do a story like his. If they don’t have huge resources, an editor would have to pass up a lot of flashy easier stories to pay out wages for months of research and interviews, fact checking for no immediate story. Which means the readership and clicks may drop. He said the WaPo is one of the few papers that has enough readers who will actually read that kind of story. And clicks are measured over shorter periods, because managers gotta watch the bottom line monthly now.

    Much cheaper to interview a few people at the diner. Those stories must be good at generating clicks since there’s so many of them.

  111. 111
    normal liberal says:

    Wouldn’t the Canadians have a better reason to build that wall?
    And they’d better not. Those occasional deliveries of lovely cool air are what gets me through a hot, muggy, particulate-laden central Illinois summer, and that’s before you account for all the stuff that gets applied to the corn and soybeans that surround us.
    Labor Day has become my favorite holiday.

  112. 112
    jimmiraybob says:

    @Schlemazel: I’m also seeing a Texas BBQ tie in……maybe name it the Perry Wall & House of BBQ. If I only knew and could afford a Russian attorney or ex KGB spy to get me a meeting.

  113. 113
    Brachiator says:


    He could build 20 feet of wall on some south Texas or Arizona property near the border but not at the border. Do a bunch of photo ops with Border Patrol people. Say the wall is being built. .

    Oh, I agree that Trump has a problem here, but he has got to find a way to deliver on his bullshit, some way to satisfy the expectations of his supporters.

    But I hadn’t really thought through part of this until now. Trump has had problems with the bullshit all his life, and many of the projects he has pushed have been little more than false fronts and empty facades, and he has simply skated on to the next con, leaving a false trail of dazzling bullshit.

    Now, he is trying this in the political arena. I don’t know how deeply the fools who voted for him want to be fooled. He has backed away from his lies that he was going to deliver “super dooper white man approved health insurance” to replace Obamacare. And we are still waiting to see what the GOP gang of idiots do next.

    However, Trump tapped into an existing anger and fear over immigration and Homeland security. His supporters love him only because he promised to give them what they wanted and to stick it to mainstream politicians. They may be less willing to accept pure bullshit than the tubes that Trump is used to fucking over.

  114. 114
    Yarrow says:

    @Kay: That’s fantastic if Kasich is going to go to war with Trump and Pence. More, please.

    I was told more than once that the person didn’t support Obamacare because there would be “too many” people at health care facilities. There isn’t enough “health care” to go around- there’s a set amount and once it’s used up it’s gone.

    This really is just fear talking. Allowing so many new people into the system was going to have some kind of effect. These people didn’t know what that effect would be. It’s easy to exploit that, so the wingnut talking heads did – “You’ll never be able to see your doctor! Lines out the door!” And people got nervous. People are scared of change. Obamacare was change. They didn’t know what it would do to them.

    Plenty of counter talking points to the issue, like why doesn’t the government allow more spots for residency and why do they so tightly control the number of doctors coming through medical school? If we had more doctors waiting wouldn’t be an issue. But that hits the logical part of the brain and doesn’t address the fear in the lizard brain.

  115. 115
    Brachiator says:


    The media’s job is to inform the citizenry.

    The media’s job is to sell papers. Or it used to be. They are failing at that.

    And again, the media ain’t a monolith. During the build up to the financial crash, some reporters were writing, “this is some bullshit.” They were ignored.

    Many wise reporters and pundits thought that Trump was a joke, in part because their centuries of journalistic experience led them to that conclusion. There may still be a YouTube clip of that young journalist on a Sunday panel show being shut down by his wise betters when he dared to suggest that Trump was a serious candidate.

    And of course, these journalists thought that Trump supporters were a joke, a mass of ignorant boobs that no one needed to take seriously.

    Yep. A lot of these journalists were lazy and stupid. They ignored the story that was right in front of them.

    But that’s the way that journalism works in the real world.

    But there were also media organizations that got the story right very early on. But people didn’t pay attention, until it was too late.

  116. 116

    @Kay: They are similarly lying about immigration. Many of the measures they want to put in place already exist. They prey on people’s fears and lie and lie. Rs stand for lies, meanness, ignorance and bigotry, they want the United States to be the same.

  117. 117
    Brachiator says:


    I was told more than once that the person didn’t support Obamacare because there would be “too many” people at health care facilities. There isn’t enough “health care” to go around- there’s a set amount and once it’s used up it’s gone.

    Wow. What a bunch of pseudo free market drivel. And it has nothing to do with health insurance. There’s also some revealing selfishness here, as though these people believed, “Well, we can’t let more people have healthcare because I might not be able to get mine.”

    It’s like saying you’re against a new restaurant opening up because it means that there might not be enough food left for you.

    God, these people are stupid. And venal.

  118. 118

    @Yarrow: They only believe in win-lose (for them to win others must lose), they don’t understand win-win or lose-lose scenarios.

  119. 119

    @Brachiator: You forgot mean. That’s what the O Care repeal is about.

  120. 120
    Aleta says:

    Soon a story will break that Trump’s contractors have hired people without green cards to build a piece of fake wall at less than minimum wage. Queen Conway will sally forth: Democrats always complain if Republicans save money because Dems want higher taxes. The first time it rains, the materials in the wall will begin to disintegrate and drip strange colors, because Eric skimmed money and made a deal with a Chinese supplier who mixed in banned TCEs, PCBs and toxic pesticide powder in order to also receive subsidies for hazardous waste disposal.

  121. 121
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    It’s like saying we can’t use yardsticks and rulers and measuring tapes any more, because we’re running out of inches.

  122. 122
    Ruckus says:

    I’d imagine trying to get up in front of an audience every night and be funny is dangerous to an ego. How many other jobs do you have to stand up and get people to like what you say enough to laugh? How many people have trouble speaking to an audience about something they know, and not expecting a lot? Sometimes the crowd just isn’t into the comic or the first joke falls flat after being a hit in other cities. On TV I’d bet it’s even harder because the audience is more widespread. You fall flat there you can’t just wait till the next night. It amazes me that there are as many people as there are that are good at it. I know of people who won’t get up in front of a group and say anything because they think people will think less of them or not like them.

  123. 123
    Another Scott says:

    @Aleta: is on the case.

    I don’t think we have any idea what’s going to happen. We’re off the map in Trumpland. But it’s clear that Congress doesn’t want to pay the real price for it. It’s also clear that it won’t solve the supposed problem (something like 40% of “illegals” overstayed their visa – a wall won’t help with that).

    As of late June DHS still hadn’t awarded any contracts for prototypes.

    Donnie knows that the press and the public has a short attention span about this stuff. But we all know that some memes never go away. Remember the NAFTA Superhighway? Still, if Congress doesn’t appropriate the money, then it won’t get built. But he’ll keep trying and probably make some Potemkin sections to try to fool the rubes…

    One of the early tests will be the Omibus budget bills for FY18 – coming up soon.


  124. 124
    Booger says:

    @gene108: I’d pay good money to see a Luchador-jaeger. “Prepararse para el apretón de manos neuronal! “

  125. 125
    Ruckus says:

    When everything is a zero sum game, everything has to equal out. Oxygen is an element so if I have more, someone has less. Of course that doesn’t take into account that there is an abundance of oxygen currently in the atmosphere. But if that’s how they see healthcare or money or results of every equation then they are going to come to illogical and stupid answers. Do they do that? Yes. Their world is totally a zero sum game. How do we change that?

  126. 126
    joel hanes says:

    This trebuchet would pose something of a challenge to any wall that The Donald might actually get built.

  127. 127
    Villago Delenda Est says:


    Where WERE they?

    Eating tiger shrimp at Sally Quinn’s.

  128. 128
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @schrodingers_cat: Well, that and it has the name of that blah guy who sullied the White House with his over-melanined presence.

  129. 129
    jake the antisoshul soshulizg says:

    @Mike in NC:
    Saw it a long time ago.
    It did have one Nazi joke I remember.
    Nazi said he was not anti-semetic, because he had nothing against Arabs.

  130. 130
    sm*t cl*de says:


    I’d pay good money to see a Luchador-jaeger.

    Does this help?

  131. 131
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @Brachiator: You’re half right. Venal, probably. But not stupid.

    I’ve been dealing with a “community physicians” setup for the last 20+ years which takes Medicare, Medicaid & Tricare, & I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve sat in a crowded waiting area for many minutes past my scheduled time to see my primary care physician for a 10-minute visit in which she was too busy typing stuff into her computer to even look at me, much less examine me. And when she referred me to a specialist (basically any time she could–I think the operation expected everyone to be sent to as many specialists as possible so they could bill patient & insurance multiple times) it was a 3-month wait to be seen if you were lucky.

    People see that sort of processing (designed to maximimize referrals, throughput & billings) & think, Hokey smokes, Bullwinkle, what’s gonna happen if everyone has access to doctors?

    Part of health-care reform needs to be (1) increasing the number of slots at US medical schools, (2) jawboning said med schools to bring tuition down from the ionosphere, and (3) offering a legion of scholarships to med students in exchange for their working X years in primary care for underserved regions & populations, and (4) turning out increasing numbers of physicians’ assistants & nurse-practitioners to offload some of the routine & gatekeeping duties. We need to break the cycle of med school as a yellow brick toll road to lucrative specialities that justifies running up horrendous debt to travel. And fuck the AMA with a rusty chainsaw if they object.

    We also need to address the explosion of scheduling tests & specialist consultations for every goddamn possibility they can charge patient or insurance for. Especially when some of the worst actors among MDs throw their blood money together to set up labs where they refer their patients that charge the maximum the traffic will bear – & hand you over to a collection agency if you & your insurance both object. (E.g., my new PCP [the old one having moved out of the area] saw spooning in one of my thumbs & wanted to send me to a specialist because “it might be an iron deficiency.” He could have just added a test for that to my routine bloodwork, but oh no…)

    There is a lot wrong with the practice of medicine in this country that we could fix if we could knock the notions out of doctors’ heads that they are God (or sitting at the right hand of same) & that they deserve waaaaaay too much $$$ for their services. /rant

  132. 132
    Alex says:

    @A Ghost to Most: Shades of Bloody Kansas

  133. 133
    John Fremont says:

    @efgoldman: This!!!

    I’m attending an Irish Festival here in Colorado, so your point about coping with oppresive governments with black humor is spot on and timely.

  134. 134

    The current record for a mechanical catapult is 3636′ throwing a 10 lb payload. It’s torsion rather than gravity powered, so it is much more portable, as well as more powerful. The trebuchet record is a touch over 2700′ last I heard.

    The onager (one of the names for a torsion catapult) is a more complex machine, but is smaller and far easier to move. You can tow it with a 1 ton pickup (it’s under 5 tons), and can bring it into battery using winches, jacks an a few burly apes.

    The trebuchet is literally 5x the weight, it just slides under the weight limit on a semi, and it takes a decent size crane to unpack and assemble. Of course if you fit its heavy loads arm, you can throw a heavier payload a shorter distance. It will throw a 100 lb payload about 800 feet, and an intact upright piano almost 300′ (of course they set it on fire before throwing it. There was a TV crew involved, I think they are required to)

    In any case, you would need a wall fully a quarter of the range thrown to be sure of blocking. Oh yea, they are fairly quiet in operation. The onager does make a thump, and both whistle a bit as the sling is whipped around, but a teen age rock trio is much louder than either.

  135. 135
    Lurking Canadian says:

    There’s a documentary on tonight about an 800′ tall border wall made entirely of ice. Nobody tell Trump or it’ll give him ideas.

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