The Reason I Am Tired of This Lip Service from the GOP Bullshit Artists

Everything McCain, Corker, Sasse, and the whole mess of charlatans is saying today was true about the fucking GOP in 2006 when my stupid ass was a Republican. And while Trump may be more crass and crude, Bush was launching pointless wars based on outrageous lies, torturing people, running secret torture sights, fucking up Katrina, having his lawyers write up documents that said it was ok to torture kids, his cabinet appointees were holding fake press conferences where the staff played the role of reporters and so on and so forth.

And what did these bold truth sayers do? McCain ran for President and brought us fucking Palin and then was an irascible prick for eight years, Corker said “gimme some of that shit” and became a Senator in 2007 then spent the last eight years lying about Obama and doing shit like voting against the bill that saved our auto industry, Sasse became a Senator in 2014 at the height of the GOP insanity in the Obama years and hasn’t done a fucking thing except give media wood because he’s oh so reasonable and if anyone can point to a fucking thing Jeff Flake has done well, thanks.

They had fucking choices. And every time they put themselves and their party over country. They could have switched parties. They could have selflessly worked to inform their base and stopped appearing on Fox. They could have openly opposed Trump during the election, but with the exception of Sasse, they didn’t. A decade ago when this shit was obvious, I joined the Democrats to undo some of the shit I had helped create, and I, too, had been a Republican my whole life and went to Hitler Youth Camp (TARS- Teenage Republicans camp) and went to county Republican party meetings from the age of 13 and then got a bunch of years of on the ground training in authoritarianism in the military, yet I fucking clued in.

So they can all go fuck themselves. I don’t want to hear any of their bullshit. Good fucking Germans every god damned one of them.

And if I get in earshot of any motherfucker who says he is a Republican because they are a fiscal conservative I’m gonna end up doing a bid for 1-3.

342 replies
  1. 1
    JPL says:

    Today Flake mentioned the GOP’s move away from conservative issues to social issues, i.e. flag burning. When he denounces Gillespie, I’ll believe him.

  2. 2
    zhena gogolia says:

    Everything you say is true. Still it’s a good thing that they’re starting to say things out loud.

  3. 3
  4. 4
    JPL says:

    @zhena gogolia: I disagree because it gives credence to those intellects still supporting the party. OMG, I hate what Trump says but we still have hope. bullshit. Unless there is action, it’s all bullshit.

  5. 5
    Corner Stone says:

    We here are all still just looking for someone we can work with. Agree or disagree, at least you know where you stand with them.

  6. 6
    jl says:

    Cole needs to calm down. Take a deep breath.

    P.S.: I am a loyal Republican because I believe in fiscal discipline and have deep concerns about the decay of civility in our public discorse. Sure, Trump is learning the job more slowly than I expected, but I have concerns about what liberalism is doing to the values of our precious youth. Certainly, what Corker and Flake have done today, and the damage their rash statements have done to proper decorum, deeply concerns me.

    Edit: If only sound policy could be developed and administered by nice white men in suits and bow ties who were mild mannered, everything would be perfect.

  7. 7
    Earl says:

    The sole problem here is that Trump says the quiet parts out loud and is just so *gauche*. John McCain — the the lying piece of shit that thought Sarah Fucking Palin should be one 80 year old cancer survivor’s heartbeat away from the nuclear football — needs to fuck on off forever.

  8. 8
    JustRuss says:

    In a just world Cole would have his own show on Sundays.

  9. 9
    Central Planning says:


    I’ve had two other thoughts I’ve been kicking around regarding Dolt 45 and his enablers:

    1. I think one of the reasons they were going for the “don’t question a general” is so they can ultimately say “don’t question the commander in chief”. Of course they don’t want him questioned because he can’t string together two words and sound coherent.

    2. I think one of the reasons Dolt 45 is undoing Obama’s achievements and the traditions of the office is because people call them “…democratic norms…” and he thinks that those norms are just things that Democrats passed/did. It’s not that they are norms of democracy, the presidency, or the United States.

    I thought I had a third, but it’s escaping me now. I’m sure it will pop into my head some time next week. Which might be this week. I’m not really sure what day it is any more. Too much work, too much of the same bullshit with the republicans.

  10. 10

    You still had a functioning brain, many Rs put theirs on ice when they join the party.

  11. 11
    kindness says:

    John, your time in the military saved you. It showed you we are all in this together.

  12. 12
    guachi says:

    Yeah. The fiscal conservative line is an obvious lie. Name the last Republican President who ended his term with a lower deficit/GDP than he started with.

    You’ll have to go all the way back to Eisenhower for that one.

    On the other hand, every Democratic President post-WWII has lowered the deficit/GDP. All of them.

  13. 13
    Baud says:

    @Central Planning:

    I thought I had a third, but it’s escaping me now.


  14. 14
    Corner Stone says:

    @JustRuss: Why do you hate Cole? What did he ever do to you?

  15. 15

    Again, I will give them credit when they do more than make pretty mouth noises.

  16. 16
    Baud says:

    I didn’t realize just how Republican you were.

  17. 17
    Corner Stone says:

    Three standing ovations.

  18. 18
    hugely says:

    I like the subtle subtitle in the image – makes me smile

  19. 19
  20. 20
    Corner Stone says:

    @Baud: He still loves him some Smilin’ Jack Kemp. But don’t bring it up as it’s a sore spot.

  21. 21

    @Baud: He speaks in riddles these days, should change his name to cryptic speech.

  22. 22
    Corner Stone says:

    @Baud: Yes. If for variable Cole=Trump at Senate Unity lunch.

  23. 23
    Baud says:

    @Corner Stone: Understandable. Empowerment zones are hot.

  24. 24
    Baud says:

    @Corner Stone: Gotcha.

    ETA: I didn’t know you coded.

  25. 25

    @Corner Stone: Why are we giving Trump at lunch three standing ovations?

  26. 26
    Corner Stone says:

    A whole party of cowards. I fondly remember when Clinton was president and had higher favorables than Trump and D Senators could not wait to get in front of a microphone and excoriate him.

  27. 27
    Mnemosyne says:

    Righteously Angry John Cole is my favorite John Cole. 😄

  28. 28
    TheronWare says:

    That post was spot on John Cole. Amen and good on you!

  29. 29

    @Corner Stone: And Al Gore chose Mr Scold as his Veep candidate.

  30. 30

    I wouldn’t be quite as harsh as you. I agree that these assholes have enabled all the problems they’re currently denouncing. But denouncing those problems is at least a start, and puts them ahead of most of their GOP colleagues. Now that they’ve taken the first step of speaking up, I think they deserve a chance to convert their words into actions. Shorter: pretty words; now put your vote where your mouth is.

  31. 31

    I agree with the entire OP, but at the same time, I still think Flake/Corker/McCain/etc. speaking up is better than nothing at all, because they’re likely to be able to sway people that we Dirty Fucking Hippies won’t be able to reach. There are a lot of social science findings suggesting that the reactionaries that make up most of the GOP only listen to people they perceive as members of their tribe, so people like these senators saying things against Trump has an impact that people like us saying the same things doesn’t.

    So, in short, I’m willing to allow that their words aren’t completely useless, because they’re reaching audiences we can’t reach. But at the same time, talk is fucking cheap. If they don’t want to go down in the history books as collaborators, it’s time for some fucking action. And of course, even if they do finally start to clean up their mess, they did contribute to getting us into it in the first place. If you shit on the bathroom walls and then clean it up, good on you for cleaning up the mess, but you still shouldn’t have shat on the walls.

  32. 32
    Baud says:

    I tried to watch last night’s Maddow on msnbc’s website. I can’t believe their website still sucks so bad. It’s 2017.

  33. 33
    JPL says:

    When Phil Gramm was a democrat running in my district, I voted for the republican. Throw stones if you must.

    btw .. I didn’t vote for him when he switched sides either.

  34. 34

    @Roger Moore: If someone walks the talk, revere their footsteps.
    A rough translation of a line in Tukaram’s poem, a saint poet from 17th century Maharashtra. He was criticizing those who seek to divide on the basis of religion, while claiming to be pious and men of God.

  35. 35
    Corner Stone says:

    Tweety is very impressed with what Flake said today. Thinks it’s a tipping point.
    So basically we’re still fucked.

  36. 36
    HeleninEire says:

    Whatever. I’m prolly gonna leave here. You all make me sad and angry because you tell the truth. I am tired of the truth. Because it does not matter. Tell a lie. Yet I feel like you are all friends. Two threads ago I told you I may have to go back to America for family reasons. I’m so tired I can’t even.

    Sorry. I’m sure I’ll be OK tomorrow. I’m just exhausted.

    I don’t want to go back. I love it here.

  37. 37
    JPL says:

    @Corner Stone: Yup. . They will still vote to strip us of medicaid and medicare, but now have cover.

  38. 38
    Baud says:


    When Phil Gramm was a democrat running in my district,

    Ah, yes. Back when the Democratic Party stood for something. So I’m told.

  39. 39
    raven says:

    Tweety just called Flake Sessions!

  40. 40
    Baud says:

    @HeleninEire: I’m so sorry.

  41. 41

    @raven: This is because Tweety is an idiot.

  42. 42
    But her emails!! says:

    It’s worse now than it was in 2006 and it’s continuing to get worse. Gillespie is a prime example of this. Ostensibly, he’s a mainstream Republican, but he’s running a race baiting campaign complete with vile adds about his opponent supporting gang members. The result isn’t only to drive the racists asshats to the polls, it also radicalizes the base even further, making them even more virulently racist.

  43. 43
    Mnemosyne says:


    Oh no! Definitely get some sleep before you make any decisions. Is there a way you could split your time and deal with the family stuff that way?

  44. 44
  45. 45

    @But her emails!!:

    Ostensibly, he’s a mainstream Republican, but he’s running a race baiting campaign complete with vile adds about his opponent supporting gang members.

    So he’s pulling a Willie Horton 30 years after George HW Bush did it.

  46. 46
    HeleninEire says:

    @Baud: Thank you. I’ll be OK. Just having a bad night. So many friends and family all at once asking me to help them.

    I can’t leave Ireland. I just can’t. And I love my sister. I’m so scared about what’s going to happen to her.

    Thank you.

  47. 47
    Corner Stone says:

    @Major Major Major Major: Tweety has been displaying early onset dementia for the last several months.

  48. 48

    @HeleninEire: I don’t have anything helpful or insightful to say here; I just hope things get better for you and your loved ones.

  49. 49
    cokane says:

    well said cole

    as bad as trump is, i think it’s important to note that even if a miracle happened and congress impeached him, there would still be enormous republican dysfunction in the government

  50. 50
  51. 51


    Empowerment zones are hot.

    I must live in an empowerment zone, 102 outside.

  52. 52
    sharl says:

    @HeleninEire: That’s a tough situation. My best wishes and thoughts for you. ❤️

  53. 53
    Boatboy_srq says:

    Spot on.

    @(((CassandraLeo))): I would agree except that they just had eight years to do that and didn’t simply because Blah President®.

  54. 54
    JPL says:

    @Baud: Locally I asked to be friends with democrat facebook sites, and they refused. Think about that.

  55. 55
    Aardvark Cheeselog says:

    And if I get in earshot of any motherfucker who says he is a Republican because they are a fiscal conservative I’m gonna end up doing a bid for 1-3.

    Yeah, don’t. When you allow your enemy to provoke you into acting from anger, you give him the greatest possible gift.

    I know, you’re not serious.

  56. 56
    JPL says:

    @JPL: In 2000 on Daily Kos, I defended some of the execs from Choice Point for the purges in Florida. They truly followed the parameters they were given. They were also big dem supporters. Now the same big dem supporters back a candidate who is homophobic for mayor, because they own lots of land they want to develop.
    All politics are local.

    Since it’s a non-partisan race, I support a candidate who has voted in republican primaries, because she is unafraid to knock on doors of brown people.

  57. 57
    But her emails!! says:

    @Roger Moore:

    I was 7 when that happened. That Republicans have gone back to doing something that wasn’t really acceptable 30 years ago isn’t exactly a comforting thought.

  58. 58
    rikyrah says:

    Thank you, Cole.
    Tell the truth.

  59. 59
    debbie says:


    Well, you do need to find out for yourself what’s really going on, but even so, you may have options other than a permanent move back.

  60. 60
  61. 61
    JPL says:

    @HeleninEire: Don’t leave.. I still have bitching to do, and I love you.

  62. 62
    debbie says:

    I gotta steal that illustration up top. It would be the perfect response to my Trumpie family’s email asking if I plan to join them in holiday activities this year.

  63. 63
    Cermet says:

    It really came together as a show to steal from the dumb hicks (i.e. rural amerikan conservative voters) under ray-gun the dim witted puppet of the real power – corporate fat cats. I saw the country rapidly fall under the race baiting and overt hate of “facts” (intelligence) and it has been down hill since; we now have reached and gone over the cliff.

  64. 64
    HeleninEire says:

    @John Cole: tl dr. ;). Love you John Cole. Thank you

  65. 65
    Caphilldcne says:

    Shoot me now. I’m stuck in the AEI dinner Irving Kristol award remarks. Given to Lord Rabbi Jonathan Sacks who is both a weasel and a bore. This kind of thing happens if you work in politics in DC. Bill Kristol just spoke (very anodyne).

  66. 66
    father pussbucket says:

    any motherfucker who says he is a Republican because they are a fiscal conservative

    Who the hell claims to be a “fiscal liberal” anyway? What would that even mean?

  67. 67
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Lieberman was first in line.

  68. 68
    zhena gogolia says:


    I hope it’s just temporary.

  69. 69
    Starfish says:

    @JPL: I can loan you some Democratic Facebook sites. I feel like I am a member of all of them… except pantsuit nation. No one is ever going to make me care about fashion.

  70. 70
    Mezz says:

    Righteous Fury and Indignation
    Two of my favorite things!
    I especially appreciate the McCain/Palin point. I have found myself using her as a “substitute” in my history classes for Il Douche and his ilk of the vigorously and gleefully anti-intellectual, anti-science, anti-expert, anti-rational.
    I found out this week I am teaching a History of Presidents class in the spring. I’ve taught it twice before (gloriously NOT last fall), but the language of the description includes up to the present and I am fucking terrified.
    From a basic level, how do you plan?! How many lessons on Impeachment in the first two weeks? How much becomes simply students demanding to talk about the Orange Ignoramus?

    And then one returns to the point: this is ancient conservatism. Classic and timeless. Just with a modern social network scaffolding – Twitter.

  71. 71
    HeleninEire says:

    @JPL: Thank you. I love your bitching.

  72. 72
    wjca says:

    @jl: I. . . . have deep concerns about the decay of civility in our public discorse.

    It is astonishing that anyone can say this (not that it isn’t a very real problem) and not acknowledge that Trump is a major contributor to that decay. He isn’t “learning the job more slowly than expected.” He isn’t learning it at all. And is, if anything, becoming less civil in his discourse.

  73. 73
    notoriousJRT says:

    John Cole once again nails it. But, I do think Flake’s remarks have value. Not to the Republican base. I honestly feel they are lost. But, perhaps, to the so-called Independents, who cannot bring themselves to say they are Republicans. Maybe it will help the light come on for them the way it did for you, John and – if I am completely honest – me. It makes their failure to engage the more indefensible.

  74. 74
    low-tech cyclist says:

    Preach it, brother Cole!

    Yeah, Corker and Flake and all them had plenty of opportunities over the past year and a half to do the right thing, but they fell in line like good Germans. So fuck ’em until they start voting as pretty as they talk, and keep it up for the rest of their respective terms.

  75. 75
    notoriousJRT says:


  76. 76

    @father pussbucket: why, it’s almost like “fiscal conservative” is a bullshit PR term with no meaning and therefore has no counterpart!

  77. 77
    raven says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: Those weren’t B-2’s.

  78. 78
    Spanky says:

    @HeleninEire: Nothing is permanent. Even if you came back to America it wouldn’t necessarily be permanent. I assume you don’t now have power of attorney for her, but it sounds like that may wind up being the case. And I assume you’re imagining trying to get her resettled somewhere new.

    Think about ALL your options, and before you come back – even just for a visit – check in with the local Irish social services agencies, as well as any private/charitable ones you can find, and find out what your options are. My guess is the care over there will not be as good as over here, but GET DATA.

    I know you’re tired now, and letting emotion do the talking, but get some real info on what’s available to your sister in Ireland before you come back here. Even if it looks like there’s no way the circumstances would allow her to be over there near you, find out for sure before you find yourself suddenly faced with a decision.

    IANAL, IANASW, just a guy who wouldn’t mind having the option to un-emigrate, depending on events in the US. But I think I’m a generation too late. Maybe two.

  79. 79
    JPL says:

    @Starfish: I’m still pissed! assholes. The next time I see C……g, I’m going to tell him, I retract all my defense of him.

    Even though local politics, don’t get into social issues, you don’t support a homophobic. imo

  80. 80

    @Boatboy_srq: Well, right, hence the “shit on the walls” metaphor, and why I’ve called them collaborators. They’re in large part responsible for this mess, regardless of what they think of the Frankenstein monster/Putin puppet they’re responsible for installing into the White House. I don’t currently expect them to do anything meaningful to fix it, and even if they do, they’ll get at most partial credit for cleaning up their own mess – if we’re being generous.

    But at the same time, we’re in this mess, and if it takes a bunch of hypocritical criticism of Trumpovich from people who are largely responsible for his presidency* in the first place to get us out of it, I can’t say that’s going to be the biggest complaint on my list. The single most important thing to me is getting out of this mess. If we have to accept a lot of terrible people we don’t trust as temporary allies for that to happen, that’s still a price worth paying. This doesn’t mean we have to forgive them or trust them when it’s over. The enemy of my enemy is not my friend, and our interests don’t align beyond recognising that this president* is an existential danger to the Republic. But if it takes holding our noses and working with them to get him out of power, that’s still worth it.

    But they have to do more than just talk for any of this to be more than mere speculation. When the Senate/House GOP start drafting articles of impeachment, or the cabinet makes a serious 25A move, then they’ll have contributed meaningful steps to cleaning up the shit on the bathroom walls. Right now, they’re just complaining that the bathroom walls are smeared with excrement. This might persuade a few more people to leave the Republican Party, or a few more people to turn against Cheeto Benito in opinion polls, but neither of those is a meaningful change. Until they start cleaning up the shit, they’re still collaborators.

    …incidentally, are you still in Sarasota? I’ve been here for… shit, is it more than twenty years now? It is. That’s almost incomprehensible to me.

  81. 81
    AxelFoley says:

    Anyone else get turned on when Cole gets all righteous like this?

  82. 82
    raven says:

    @HeleninEire: You’ve got a tough one there. I know you will do what’s right for all of you.

  83. 83

    Wait, did I just hear on the radio that Flake didn’t even use Trump’s name? What a shitheel.

  84. 84
    piratedan says:

    so… we get another GBCW speech from yet another GOP Senator with apparently no fucks to give, yet if that were really true, where are the articles of impeachment?… they could even let all the traitorous bullshit go and simply punish him on emoluments charges (but that would also painfully possibly indict Mitchies and Mavreick’s squeezes)

    they could go after him for simply being a callous no-nothing fucktard… or for being mentally unhinged… or they’ll simply settle for a brief shining moment of being a less than subservient lemming, take their check and shuffle off of the soap-box mollified that they did everything that they could do without doing any fucking thing, which is apparently mostly what they do, when they aren’t taking healthcare and tax breaks away from those who need them the most to reward those who need it the least.

    get back to us when these worthless hand-wringers actually do something.

  85. 85
    raven says:

    @Major Major Major Major: Neither did McCain in his draft-dodger rant.

  86. 86

    @Major Major Major Major: I think the idea is not dignifying him with his name, much like Pierce often uses “the president*” (with the asterisk indicating that he isn’t a legitimate occupant of the office) rather than his actual name. YMMV on how legit this is coming from Flake, but I’m actually working on an essay that currently stands at over 100+ pages (at this point I guess it really qualifies as a book) where I’ve employed the same rhetorical tactic throughout (I’ve consistently used the same convention as Pierce, without realising when I’d started it that he was doing the same thing).

    ETA: yeah, plus what raven said about McCain. It’s starting to look like a coordinated strategy actually.

  87. 87
    polyorchnid octopunch says:

    @father pussbucket: It means they tax and spend, not borrow and spend.

  88. 88
    raven says:

    Speaking of Dodgers. . .

  89. 89
    Marcopolo says:

    Amen. I too like angry Cole. Depending on the issue I reliably fall somewhere on the left side of the spectrum. When it comes to anything that furthers income inequality I even find myself (as I grow older—50s) heading towards Marxism. But at least up to around 2000 I ocassionally voted for the Republican, if I thought they were a better candidate. Not since then though. I suppose that is one reason I find myself at home here. Now everyone wish me luck as I attempt to convince my Trump voting R neighbor (who has two sons: one gay & the other getting his health insurance via the ACA) who now readily admits voting for the wrong person to vote for Claire McCaskill in 2018. Today he did approvingly note she was sane.

  90. 90
    sublime33 says:

    I’ll take a flawed ally over a dangerous enemy. Too many of Trump”s die hard supporters remind me of OJ Simpson”s die hard defenders. No matter how much evidence is staring them in the face, they refuse to believe their guy isn’t a victim of the system trying to bring them down. And both men had little respect for their deepest supporters.

  91. 91

    @raven: I knew that one.

    @(((CassandraLeo))): what is it supposed to achieve? It makes them seem weasely.

  92. 92
    The Moar You Know says:

    Bunch of dumb motherfuckers on this thread. Y’all ought to read some German history to see what good “speaking out” does. Maybe swing by Auschwitz if you still don’t get it afterwards.

    I goddamnguarantee every one of you that when the vote for the tax cuts hits the senate, Flake, McCain, Sasse and every other dumb fuck with an “R” after its name is going to vote for it, with gusto. And that’s going to be the end of America as a going concern.

    But hey, keep “speaking out”. Be sure to throw some “truth to power” in there too. That’s just how the GOP likes their Democrats – useless.

  93. 93

    @Marcopolo: Good luck.

    I’ve voted for Democrats in almost every election where one was running since I’ve been able to vote, but I was fairly susceptible to both-sides horseshit when I was younger. GWB quickly cured me of that, and ultimately pushed me into libertarian socialism, a stance I’ve held ever since. I was briefly third-party-curious in 2012 but was cured of it before the actual election, as Duverger’s Law is a harsh mistress. At this point I find it difficult to imagine ever not voting for a Democrat when one is available. There’d have to be a “Democrat” like Phil Gramm running against a Republican like Andy Gardiner or Brian Sandoval for me ever to consider not voting for the Dem. (There are a few Republicans at the state level who aren’t complete psychos – not many, but they exist. At the national level there are probably just as many unicorns.)

  94. 94
    satby says:

    @HeleninEire: I have to go look at what you said on the earlier thread, but if there’s anything your stateside buddies can do, let us know on that book of faces.

  95. 95
    Marcopolo says:

    @HeleninEire: As a mostly lurker here, don’t leave BJ. As someone who takes care of a family member, stay in Eire if that is where you are finding your happiness. I wouldn’t be particularly good doing what I do if I wasn’t happy to do it.

  96. 96
  97. 97

    @(((CassandraLeo))): Gah, stuck in moderation because I correctly spelt an economic theory that advocates worker control of the means of production. Halp pl0x.

  98. 98
    JPL says:

    @Starfish: Now I’m curious.. See if they will befriend you on facebook
    Indivisible North Fulton
    I support a candidate who is going against slum landlords, and trying to get the minority community involved. Since it’s non-partisan, I never asked who she voted for. I maxed out for Obama, but they obviously didn’t like some of my writings on other facebook sites.

    supposedly they want affordable housing, and the latest apartments being built are 2400 for one bedroom.

  99. 99

    @Major Major Major Major: I suspect it’s intended to carry the implication that he’s beneath the dignity of the office – that mentioning him by name would be assigning him a gravitas he doesn’t deserve. My biggest objection to it is that their constituents probably aren’t sophisticated enough to pick up on it, but I at least appreciate what they’re (probably) trying to do.

  100. 100
    Enzymer says:

    I’m all in favor of Democratic Party leaders making nice welcoming sounds to Flake & Corker. But also be publicly calling/shaming them to denounce Gillespie in VA and Moore in AL. If their words mean anything that should be a slam dunk

  101. 101
    HeleninEire says:

    @satby: its #89 in Just Words.

  102. 102
    Brachiator says:


    . I found out this week I am teaching a History of Presidents class in the spring.

    You know, I bet this will be a lot of fun. And very timely.

  103. 103
    raven says:

    @Marcopolo: In case she went to bed I think she meant leave Ireland not BJ.

  104. 104
    Corner Stone says:

    @The Moar You Know: You seem angry.

  105. 105
    jl says:

    @wjca: Just to be clear, that was snark, just me poking at Cole with stick (We commenters are supposed to do that, right?).

  106. 106
    Ella in New Mexico says:


    I. . . . have deep concerns about the decay of civility in our public discorse.

    yeah, well, seriously, I have watched scummy politicians and media demagogue whores on jl’s side say and conduct the most outrageous, uncivil, offensive, cruel and totally fabricated “public discourse” for at least the past 30 years. Tune into talk radio if you wanna hear what we hear everyday, and not from “liberals”, sir.

    Even so, there used to be some sane pushback when it got unhinged. Trump’s party is just dropping all pretense that it’s wrong and running with it like a terrier who finally caught the damn squirrel…

  107. 107
    The Moar You Know says:

    @Corner Stone: just finished “Rise and Fall of the Third Reich” and yeah, I’m angry. America 2017 is just a shitty remake of the same movie on a low budget cable network with non union actors. But the script, man…it’s word for word.

  108. 108
    jl says:

    @Ella in New Mexico:

    ‘media demagogue whores on jl’s side say’

    Hey, wait up. I was joking. Aren’t we supposed to taunt Cole from time to time? Especially when his spleen bursts multiple times a day. Kind of like an intervention. Like you see on reality TV shows.

  109. 109
    Baud says:

    @The Moar You Know: The Germans didn’t have Balloon Juice.

  110. 110
    HeleninEire says:

    @raven:I meant both. Leaving BJ cuz the truth hurts. May have to leave Ireland because of my sister.

    Bad night all around.

  111. 111
    Baud says:

    @jl: You’ve gone to far this time, jl. Too damn far.

  112. 112
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Baud: Was that a good or a bad thing?

  113. 113

    @The Moar You Know: “Y’all ought to read some German history to see what good “speaking out” does.”

    What would you suggest instead?

    And John – thank you. It needs saying and saying as often as can be said.

  114. 114
    eemom says:

    @zhena gogolia:
    @Roger Moore: @(((CassandraLeo))):

    So the Charlie Browns continue to proliferate. Or do you all just love to hear yourselves talk so much it doesn’t matter how stupid you sound?

  115. 115
    Baud says:

    @HeleninEire: wha….? I thought you just meant Ireland.

    Do what you need to for your sanity. But that sucks.

  116. 116
    jl says:

    @Baud: OK. fair enough. I can always blame Baud 2016! for every problem.

    O’Reilly blames God and I blame Baud.

  117. 117
    JPL says:

    @HeleninEire: I wish I could help. If you are ever in my neck of the woods let me know, although I was depending on you to adopt me. Ireland sounds like a nice place.

  118. 118
    Baud says:

    @jl: I wish I could argue, but you have a fair point.

  119. 119
    eemom says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    IOW, what you said.

  120. 120


    My biggest objection to it is that their constituents probably aren’t sophisticated enough to pick up on it

    That’s certainly one of mine as well.

  121. 121
    Baud says:

    @Major Major Major Major:

    Wait, did I just hear on the radio that Flake didn’t even use Trump’s name?

    Hillary called him Donald to his face.

  122. 122
  123. 123
    Steeplejack says:


    And I am astonished that anyone’s snark detector could be this out of whack.

  124. 124
    Mike J says:

    @raven: Did they get bone spurs in Chavez ravine?

  125. 125
    jl says:

    General announcement to BJ commentariate. From now on, if I piss anyone off here, it’s Baud’s fault. Get off my back and go bother Baud about it.
    Thanks for your attention.

  126. 126
    raven says:

    @HeleninEire: Oh, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to speak for you.

  127. 127
    Steeplejack says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor (formerly Iowa Old Lady):

    I think, although it’s not very clear, that by “here” she means Ireland—having to move back to the States—not deciding to leave this blog. But I could be wrong.

  128. 128
    raven says:

    @Mike J: They are melting tonight.

  129. 129
    khead says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    Flake has already voted FOR the 2018 budget!

  130. 130

    @The Moar You Know: FWIW professional historians believe that Shirer made some pretty big errors in Rise and Fall. I’ve read some of Richard Evans’ The Coming of the Third Reich (I didn’t have time to finish it before I had to return it to the library), and there are a lot of alarming parallels, but there are some significant differences too.

    Perhaps most importantly, our economy is nowhere near as fucked up as Germany’s was. The hyperinflation they went through was so utterly devastating that it completely defies belief. I’m not even going to attempt to describe it; I will simply say that if I provided a brief summary, you wouldn’t believe me. If it were submitted as a work of fiction, it would be rejected for being too over-the-top to be plausible.

    There are other significant differences, too. Academia in Germany was far more right-wing than ours was. I have my complaints with our university system, but overall they’re not fascists. The civil service was also shot through with people who, while not necessarily outright fascists themselves, were often fellow travellers. As many problems as I have with our intelligence community, they’re definitely not demonstrating any particular pliability to the president*’s agenda (Pompeo aside). The judiciary, too, seems to have been far more right-wing in Weimar Germany. It’s not as though our judiciary is exactly liberal, but overall there’s a fairly decent balance and the judiciary has been a fairly decent check on the president*. That did not occur in Germany.

    And then there are some differences that are just outright weird. Business was actually in a somewhat weak bargaining position in Weimar Germany compared to its status here, and I suspect this made them a lot more pliable to Hitler’s demagoguery. Overall I’m probably about as critical of business and capitalism as anyone you will ever find, but a lot of businesses here seem like they aren’t too thrilled with the president*. This might be merely because he’s unpopular and it’s bad business to side with him, but I’ll take what I can get.

    And then there’s the simple fact that we have a two-hundred-plus-year tradition of democracy, and Germany… didn’t. I’m not going to say that makes our government incapable of turning into fascism, but it does mean that there’s institutional inertia here that there simply wasn’t in the Weimar Republic.

    In short, yeah, there are a lot of alarming parallels, but we shouldn’t overstate them to the extent that we become demoralised. We have to resist this presidency* as much as we can, but we shouldn’t become overwhelmed. Things are bad, but they’re not Germany 1933 level bad yet, much less 1938 or 1942.

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  132. 132
    notoriousJRT says:

    @eemom: I guess you like to listen to how bitchy you sound.

  133. 133
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    HeleninEire says:

    @Baud: Like I said, just a bad day. But I come here to BJ recently and I just get so sad. Its not you guys, it’s the news. Everyone in Ireland is so happy and just going about their businesses. I love what America is supposed to mean and I love my family and reading that it’s all going to shit just makes me so sad.

  135. 135

    @eemom: Excuse me, I do believe I explicitly said that these people are collaborators until they take concrete steps to remove this president* from office, and that I haven’t seen any signs whatsoever that any of them are likely to do so. Just because I’m willing to give someone a courtesy cookie for saying something that may persuade a few people on the margins that wouldn’t persuade the same people if it were said by one of us doesn’t mean the scales have fallen from my eyes. But thanks for the gratuitous insult, person I’ve literally never before spoken to.

  136. 136
    HeleninEire says:

    @raven: That’s OK.

  137. 137
    raven says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))): You’re not from around here are you?

  138. 138
    JPL says:

    @HeleninEire: We do fight back though and that is what is important.

  139. 139
    Baud says:

    @HeleninEire: If you have to return and you have the time and energy, find some folks who are doing something positive and not merely bitching on the internet about things. I agree it can get overwhelming here. The reason I haven’t joined the chorus of Don’t Leave is because I’ve considered it myself.

  140. 140

    @raven: I mean, I don’t comment as much as a lot of others. I’ve learnt to expect this sort of thing here sometimes, but that doesn’t mean I’m not going to snark back when I think someone crosses a line.

  141. 141
    Baud says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))): And Germany didn’t have Balloon Juice.

  142. 142
    sharl says:

    Tom Perez and the DNC cosign with Cole.

    Keith Ellison’s former spox is pleasantly surprised…

    this is a shockingly good statement and the replies to it are absolutely dumbfounding.— mmmm breeens 👻💀⚰️ (@isikbreen) October 25, 2017

    …and takes the centrists criticizing the DNC statement in the DNC’s tweet thread to task.

    guys, i hope you take the replies to this statement as an indication of how psycho centrists are, and not that this statement was bad.— mmmm breeens 👻💀⚰️ (@isikbreen) October 25, 2017

    IMO this is discussion that needs to take place within and among the politically engaged* on the Left, even though it’s gonna be harsh and messy, and not lead to any kind of quick resolution.
    (*as opposed to people who only spout off online)

  143. 143
    raven says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))): It was a joke. . .

  144. 144
    JPL says:

    @Baud: You talking about me. lol

  145. 145
    Mnemosyne says:


    Definitely take the steps that someone detailed above and see what you can do for your sister from or in Ireland. If things really go to shit here, wouldn’t you rather have her with you in Ireland than have both of you stuck in the US?

  146. 146
    Felonius Monk says:

    @Central Planning:

    I thought I had a third, but it’s escaping me now.

    Rick Perry, is that you? Did you forget to wear your magic glasses?

  147. 147
    zhena gogolia says:


    Wow, that was a pretty assholish thing to say.

  148. 148
    Baud says:

    @JPL: Maybe….

  149. 149
    Frank McCormick says:

    @JustRuss: Along with driftglass.

  150. 150

    @(((CassandraLeo))): I will allow that for most of our country’s existence, we had at best a de facto democracy – large portions of the citizenry weren’t actually allowed to vote. That is an important distinction, and one that’s far too seldom made.

    But at the same time, because it’s so seldom made, I think that also strengthens our institutional inertia. Because there’s a widespread belief that we’ve been democratic for over two hundred years, that gives more power to the idea of democracy amongst the people working in our civil service, even if what we had for most of that time didn’t really qualify as a democracy.

    In short, it’s one of those cases where the perception of an idea can actually be more influential to present events than the historical reality of it was. That’s not to erase the vast suffering the majority who were disenfranchised faced over that time – and, for that matter, still face in large part as a direct consequence of that disenfranchisement. But it does provide a powerful counterweight against the president* that otherwise wouldn’t exist, even if it’s almost entirely based in a myth.

  151. 151

    @raven: I thought it might be, but I can also see why that might not’ve been evident in my response. No worries.

  152. 152
    HeleninEire says:

    OK thank you all. This is why I said above that I consider you all friends. You have all been wonderful tonight. It is almost 2am here and time for me to go to sleep.

    Thank you all. COME VISIT!! It is fanfuckingtastic here!!!!

    Love to you all


  153. 153

    @Baud: And Mahatma Baud either!

  154. 154
    Baud says:


    सत्याग्रह! 2020!

  155. 155
    Emma says:

    @HeleninEire: Many, many prayers and best wishes. Get some rest so you can be clear-headed. Any decision you make right now is at best iffy.

  156. 156
    Marcopolo says:

    @HeleninEire: Ah, but see it is all those lovely comments you make about your life over there that help to lighten the mood here!

    In all honesty, I think the only sane response to the election result on Nov 9, was a certain level of depression. Events since then haven’t improved anything. Coming here & sharing helps me cope—even if all I am doing is reading & lurking. Perhaps we need more regular pet threads w/ photos (Coke doesn’t seem to post those much anymore). Or maybe a more regular “what people are doing to stay happy” feature. I’m interested to hear what others think.

  157. 157
    Steeplejack says:

    @Major Major Major Major:

    Maybe they could call him by an agreed-upon nickname—maybe like Walter, Wilfred, say, something like that.

    No, never mind.

  158. 158
    Greg Ferguson says:

    Thanks, Cole – shared on Facebook – – you know, as I’m a Flake constituent, I might call his office (he has a very good staff, based on prior calls) and just ask why he doesn’t go Ind. for the duration. What’s he have to lose? Are Ind’s compelled to caucus with one or the other of the two parties? Could be interesting.
    Will report.

  159. 159
    raven says:

    @Marcopolo: Our early morning group is much less frantic.

  160. 160
    Hildebrand says:

    My question (and please forgive me if this has been raised before): Why now? Why are these brave souls popping off now? I get that they are not running, but they knew Trump was a disaster last year, and they had a chance to drive a stake into Trumpism before it could get off the ground then. Why wait? Why not kill the monster before it grows in power?

  161. 161

    @(((CassandraLeo))): FWIW I agree with you.
    @The Moar You Know: WWI and WWII weren’t the end of Germany but a budget is going to destroy this country forever? I would say that you lack historical perspective. I don’t think we are that fragile, as human beings and as a nation.

  162. 162

    @Baud: Gandhi was a genius, satyagraha, means insistence on the truth. That is definitely the ticket in 2018 and 2020

  163. 163
    Jeffro says:

    Hey – just for a second – let us savor: the GOP technically controls all three branches of government at this point. Yet, they’re totally fucked. Their civil war has been delayed but it’s clearly still ready to be ‘on’ at any moment. They’re as bankrupt as bankrupt can be. Their party is so rotten, the few with any conservative principles (however screwed up those principles may be) are having to retire early rather than face their. own. Trumpista Moronica base(!)

    LOVE it, if even just for a second. I sure do.

  164. 164
    Jeffro says:

    @Hildebrand: They are popping up now because they were holding out hope against hope that Trumpov would be able to keep it together and act like a relatively sane person long enough for them to do what they always do: loot the Treasury, roll back that dang soshulism a bit, and so on. But he’s not only incapable of helping them do that, he’s so unstable that even some of their folks are starting to get it – the biggest danger to our national security is…Trump.

  165. 165
    WaterGirl says:

    @HeleninEire: Sending you big hugs. I want to share a new rule that I put in place about a month ago. “No worries in the bedroom.” That’s what I say to myself as soon as I start thinking about something worrisome when I go to bed. I repeat that to myself whenever my bedtime thoughts drift in the wrong direction. It’s really helping me, maybe it will help you.

    I hope things look a bit brighter for you in the light of day. I’m confident that there are solutions that don’t involve you moving back here permanently. We just have to help you find them.

  166. 166
    WaterGirl says:

    Thanks for this post Cole. Spot on and I love your righteous anger.

  167. 167

    @Marcopolo: I was depressed for awhile after the election. To be honest, though, I think I’ve actually been less depressed at times since the election than I was in much of the preceding years. The uncertainty over the outcome was killing me, and I had to fear worst-case scenarios that haven’t come to pass.

    The president* has been terrible; don’t get me wrong. In some ways, he’s been even more terrible than I expected. I didn’t, for instance, particularly expect him to bothsidesdoit! actual Nazis with actual body counts. But he’s also been far, far less competent than I thought possible. I knew he was incompetent. I didn’t have any idea he was this incompetent. I honestly didn’t know it was possible for a human being to be this incompetent. This is bad in some respects, but it also means he’s been utterly terrible at getting aspects of his agenda passed. I honestly didn’t expect Obamacare to survive for even a month, much less for all the GOP’s attempts at repeal to fail. And to be clear, I would have lost my health insurance if Obamacare had been repealed. Given that I need mental healthcare and medication to function in the slightest, it’s difficult to overstate how much sleep I lost at night.

    The other worst-case scenario I kept envisioning was nuclear war. That still looms as a shadow over us, but it hasn’t happened yet, and I’m starting to grow suspicious that if there were any actual danger of the president* pushing the big red button, the IC would take him out before that occurred. I’m not 100% confident of this, and there’s always the possibility that Kim Jong Orange shooting his mouth off on Twitter will provoke a conflagration without him pressing the button himself. It’s still bad enough that if the machines offered to intervene to prevent the likelihood of nuclear war, I’d probably take the offer even if it meant something like Samaritan. But the destruction of the planet no longer seems as certain to me as it did on Nov. 9.

    The third thing that’s lifted my spirits a lot is the popular resistance. It far exceeds anything I’d ever seen in my lifetime – honestly, it far exceeds anything I expected Americans were even capable of. We could be doing even better, but we’ve done far, far better than I ever expected us to. This is actually the main thing that’s kept me from being suicidal for these last nine months.

    One other thing that’s personally helped me, which probably won’t be as personally helpful for anyone else but might still be an extra bright spot keeping this from being the Darkest Timeline, is that a childhood friend of mine won the Academy Award for Best Picture earlier this year for a truly groundbreaking, inspiring film. Moonlight spoke to me in a way that, honestly, no other film in history ever has – not because I have that much in common with its characters (poor, black, gay, etc.), but because what the film says about struggles with identity issues speaks a truth that I have never seen expressed in fiction before. Not that I have never seen expressed that eloquently or in that much detail – a truth I have never seen expressed at all.

    The film itself inspired me to begin writing in much greater earnest than I’d ever written before, and I’ve discovered firstly that I’ve made much greater progress over the course of my life than I thought I had, and secondly (from the feedback I’ve gotten) that I’m a much better writer than I’d given myself credit for being, to the point where I actually think I may at some point be able to earn a living from it. And I think I have stories to tell that will be of great help to marginalised people who need hope. And knowing that I have an influential personal connection in the entertainment industry feels particularly fortuitous with that in mind.

    This isn’t to say that I haven’t still struggled with depression. Actually, the past few months have been quite harsh – things got so absurd that I fell into an existential funk for a bit. Everything felt intrinsically meaningless and I couldn’t figure out how to step forward. But I’ve switched medications in the past month, and writing has, once again, helped me regain perspective. I’ve started being able to move forward again a bit, if not as quickly as I’d have liked.

    In short, yeah, things suck. But I think I actually feel better now than I did before the election, because I’ve been disabused of my belief that we’re actually in the Darkest Timeline. As horrible as things are, they could also be a hell of a lot worse. Plus, as I detailed above, we’re nowhere near 1933 Germany levels right now. That alone is comforting.

  168. 168
  169. 169

    @Hildebrand: They are not particularly brave, may be they know something that we don’t.
    ETA: They have access to classified material that is not public knowledge yet, that is damaging to the object of their ire. I am speculating.

  170. 170
    Hildebrand says:

    @Jeffro: I simply wonder how they couldn’t have seen that he was a disaster – and dangerous.

  171. 171
    Shana says:

    @Caphilldcne: Of course he did, he’s Irving’s son. It’s probably part of the deal.

  172. 172
    Steeplejack says:


    I stand corrected. Late to the thread.

  173. 173
    raven says:

    @Steeplejack: Yea, it jumped around a bit.

  174. 174
    KhefnNoKY says:

    And Brave Bernie is going to run as an I(NDEPENDENT)!!! Then come 2020 try to run as a “D.” All of them can lemming off a cliff. He should if he thinks he should have the privilege of putting himself before the country! Probably still won’t release his taxes due to his wife’s corruption.

  175. 175
    Baud says:

    @KhefnNoKY: Who the hell are you?

  176. 176

    This, most thoroughly. Thanks, man, this hit the spot.

  177. 177

    @Baud: a Russian Markov chain as far as I can tell.

  178. 178
    NorthLeft12 says:

    @guachi: This is one of those world wide myths….that conservatives are somehow fiscally more responsible and the economy performs better under their stewardship. Here in Canada it has been debunked time after time, yet you still hear the pundits and a lot of voters mindlessly repeating it.

    I think people mistake conservatives’ meanness and cruelty towards the poor and working class for being tough and careful with the public purse. Mainly because they can say no, and get a thrill in their pants when they do, to the needy. What people miss is that the cons are shoveling out the money as fast as they can for military expenditures and to corporations and big business. They are only being careful in the sense that they make sure that they overspend on only the “right” people and causes.

    BTW I hate those fuckers.

  179. 179
    Baud says:

    @Major Major Major Major: Is our Putin learning?

    Any Wilmer-related discussions shouldn’t be instigated by unproven newcomers IMHO.

  180. 180
    Ruckus says:

    @Roger Moore:
    You think the horse may have already left the barn?
    Everything that drumpf is was right out in the open before the election. EVERYTHING. What we are seeing is what was predicted by many, including many on this blog. But they are only waking up after 8 months of the shitgibbon being in office? And by waking up I mean they rolled over looked at the clock and pulled the covers over their heads. We are supposed to be gladdened that people like Flake are not running for reelection because they don’t want to be associated with this shit? Why don’t they do something? How about first apologize for being a douchebag and supporting the shitgibbbon in the first place. How about ask what they can do and publicly switch parties to help get it done. If they want to be anything but an enabler of the shitgibbon they are going to have to take some positive action, not just bow out like the chickenshits they are.

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  182. 182
    Shana says:

    @WaterGirl: I know I keep mentioning him lately, but P.G. Wodehouse’s writing is the perfect antidote to this crap we’re living through. If you can’t laugh at Bertie Wooster and Jeeves, Mr. Mulliner, all the Emsworth family at Blandings, nothing will make you laugh.

  183. 183
    Barbara says:

    @Greg Ferguson: You asked why don’t they just go independent, and I think that is a great idea for the next baby step they could take that would show some ability to do just more than speak out. Indeed, they would be better off saying nothing and just caucusing among themselves. Trump feeds on conflict and it would be more effective to just figure out what action they are willing to take and take it with a minimum of drama and rhetoric. When you are breaking up with your SO refusing to take calls is a much better strategy than continuing to engage in emotional back and forth dialogue.

  184. 184
    SFAW says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    As we say in the Heimat: So was neues?

  185. 185

    @Baud: or at least dropped somewhere relevant. And we aren’t even getting to the grammar.

  186. 186
    Shana says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))): Good for you. I was much more engaged in resistance earlier this year, now I find myself just feeling ground down.

  187. 187
    Baud says:

    @Major Major Major Major: Yeah, my Google translate comments are better than that.

  188. 188
    Mnemosyne says:


    I used a long quote from “Unpleasantness at Bludleigh Court” here the other day, from after the heroine first meets the hero’s awful family. 😂

  189. 189
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Shana: Think of it as a relay race. And get ready to get back into the race when you can.

  190. 190
    Jeffro says:

    This is almost too funny, almost: Trumpov even wanted to change Denali back to Mt. McKinley, just to spite Obama.

    What kind of loser is that fixated, that petty and craven? Wait, I think I know…

  191. 191

    @Baud: you have google translate comments?

  192. 192
    Mnemosyne says:


    Why wait? Why not kill the monster before it grows in power?

    Because, like every mad scientist, they foolishly thought they could control the monster.

  193. 193

    @Major Major Major Major: Sure from Baud’s native language, Baudian*.

    *I didn’t know Google had a translator for Baudian; full service, that Google.

  194. 194
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Major Major Major Major: He is a valued commenter there.

  195. 195
    Baud says:

    @Major Major Major Major: English isn’t my first language.

  196. 196

    @Shana: Thanks, though to be clear, I haven’t done nearly as much active resistance as I’d like to be doing. I want to go to a lot more protests & I feel like I should be calling/writing legislators a lot more than I have been. At the same time, I also feel like what I have been doing hasn’t been meaningless. In some ways, just keeping people from reaching the level of despair where they shut down feels like the most important resistance of all. I think a lot of the RW (not the president*, who isn’t a deep enough thinker to come to conclusions like this, but fuckers like Bannon and his ilk) want us to feel so demoralised that we don’t have the energy left to fight back. Perhaps living well is the best revenge.

    Anyway, take care of yourself. I hope you feel better soon.

  197. 197
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Baud: Is any language your first language?

  198. 198
    Baud says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Is grunting considered a language?

  199. 199
    Matt McIrvin says:


    The other worst-case scenario I kept envisioning was nuclear war. That still looms as a shadow over us, but it hasn’t happened yet, and I’m starting to grow suspicious that if there were any actual danger of the president* pushing the big red button, the IC would take him out before that occurred. I’m not 100% confident of this, and there’s always the possibility that Kim Jong Orange shooting his mouth off on Twitter will provoke a conflagration without him pressing the button himself.

    I think that if it happens, it’s not going to be Trump going nuts while everyone else tries to stop him. It sounds like some kind of insane consensus is building in Washington for a “preventive” strike on North Korea. Most of them probably aren’t thinking about it being a nuclear war, but NK obviously already has nukes of some sort and China could get into it. We could walk straight into it with bipartisan support just like Iraq.

  200. 200
    eemom says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    Roger to all that….and thankful to be a bitch, asshole and gratuitous insulter rather than an idiot lamb to the slaughter.

  201. 201

    @Omnes Omnibus: What is a first language anyway when you grow up listening to more than one when you are growing up? Children can pick up a lot of languages when they are really young without much effort. I pretty much just absorbed Hindi from movies without any conscious effort and I understood it fairly well before I started formally learning it.

  202. 202
    Jeffro says:


    I simply wonder how they couldn’t have seen that he was a disaster – and dangerous.

    Well, the alternative was for them to try and go to war with him and his base, which is pretty clearly a plurality if not a majority of GOP voters by now, in defense of…what? Trumpov being an asshole is just a minor stretch from what most GOP politicians do, say, and vote for anyway.

    So they held their noses and covered their eyes and ears, and hoped that when the dust settled they’d just get their usual wish list delivered, albeit with a cruder-than-usual figurehead signing their crap into law. Actually, a step back: I think 90% of GOP leaders genuinely couldn’t believe Trumpov was winning throughout the primaries, and 99% of them didn’t think he’d win* the presidency. They’ve been almost as discombobulated as we’ve been.

    But now they see that he’s not only erratic but that he’s so erratic he threatens our national security. I mean, just think what these guys are seeing up close every time they meet with Bone Spur Bozo. The nightmares they’re probably having are no less than they deserve, but still. And so they’re starting to crack.

    Hell, even with Nunes and this wacky uranium investigation, or Gowdy and this wacky Clinton email investigation – that’s a sign that they’re cracking. They don’t know what else to do, so they’re ‘going back to the well’, so to speak. Their press conferences are going to be almost – almost! – comical.

  203. 203

    @Baud: आपकी हिन्दी काफी अच्छी है |

  204. 204
    Ruckus says:

    Can we help?
    Maybe we can tag team things and do something.
    My 27 yr old fellow worker who is gone as of last Wed afternoon, his sister started a GoFund me for his funeral expenses. It’s over $9900 as of this afternoon. People are willing to help, in many ways.

  205. 205
    Mnemosyne says:


    I went into Moonlight not knowing much about it (except that it was about a young Black man at different stages of his life) and was surprised at how much it was about hope. Yes, his life had some terrible struggles. Yes, he was damaged and bruised by his life. But at the end, there was still love and hope.

    You can tell your friend that this middle-aged white lady got goosebumps when that song played on the jukebox and it became clear exactly what was happening for those two lonely, damaged but not defeated characters.

    And it was so nice to see an actual love story with a HAPPY ENDING for freakin’ once!

  206. 206

    @schrodingers_cat: “first language” in this case is probably the one(s) you were taught how to write in.

  207. 207
    diierent-church-lady says:

    @jl: Poe’s Law: do not fuck with it.

  208. 208
    Baud says:

    @schrodingers_cat: धन्यवाद, बिल्ली।

  209. 209

    @Matt McIrvin: You could be right, but I don’t think our Dems are foolish enough to fall for it this time around. I also think that if they were, they’d be crucified over it; the resultant protests would be likely to make the ones over Vietnam and Iraq look like sideshows. I really don’t think the base would allow the party to fall in line behind a president* this horrible for something that could very plausibly end the world.

    Maybe I’m just overly optimistic, but I think most of the Dems realise that if they went along with this crap, they’d never win another election.

  210. 210
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Baud: I am feeling generous, so sure, why not?

  211. 211
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @NorthLeft12: In the US I always assumed that was the long shadow of the myth of Carter and Reagan, that decades of liberal consensus led to the stagflation of the 70s, Carter was helpless to stop it but Reagan killed it dead with his mighty conservatism.

    But maybe the great show conservatives make of being stingy makes people think they’re responsible.

  212. 212

    @Mnemosyne: Agreed on all counts. I’d add to what you said that the film distinguished itself from very nearly every other romance I’ve ever seen/read (and really, the vast majority of stories in any genre) because the hope it offered rang entirely true to life. It wasn’t some pat bullshit that reduced the world to empty slogans or created black and white moralism where none exists. It didn’t provide naïve just-world fallacies or pretend people are any better than they are. But at the same time, it showed how marginalised people can create their own happiness out of shitty circumstances and against the desire of the world.

    What I found especially powerful about it, though, wasn’t just the film itself; it was the reaction to it. The first queer film to win Best Picture. The first primarily AA film to win Best Picture. The smallest budget film to win Best Picture. The fact that it earned something like 50x its budget at the box office. How powerfully audiences responded to it. What was uniquely powerful about Moonlight wasn’t just Moonlight itself; it was how the world responded to it. In a way, the response to the film actually proves its own central theme.

    And it accomplished all of this while treating some thoroughly depressing, devastating social issues with the gravitas and depth they deserved. It was like The Wire in its journalistic realism, but despite that, it still had a happy ending.

    I’ve never seen another film like it. It’s by far the best romance story I’ve ever experienced in any medium and it’s by far the best film I’ve ever seen. I’m not merely saying this because I personally know one of the creators. I’m saying it almost entirely because I’m genuinely aware of nothing else like it.

  213. 213
    TriassicSands says:

    I just read the transcript of Flake’s speech to the Senate and I think an appropriate title might be “Jeff in Wonderland.” If he really wanted to make a difference, he would fight to keep his seat and radically change his conduct in the Senate. But, faced with an uphill battle to re-nomination, he chooses instead to pretend to be principled and vows to wage the good fight from outside the Senate. The only way to change things in this country — with its two-party system — is for the malignancy that is the GOP to discover some real democratic principles and dedicate themselves to furthering those principles. Yes, that would require a complete repudiation of the past several decades. It would definitely mean either impeaching Trump or ousting him via the 25th Amendment. That would be a good place — perhaps the only place — to start. But it’s a long, long way from the finish line.

    The New Republican Party would abandon voter suppression. It would support non-partisan redistricting commissions. I would openly renounce trickle down and supply side economics and forever stop pretending that tax cuts pay for themselves. Critically, they would support universal health care achieved without the use of for-profit insurance companies.

    It might be too much for them to welcome a woman’s right to choose, but they could accept that people of good conscience differ on that issue and cease using sleazy stratagems to prevent women — mostly poor women and women of color — from exercising their right. One important step that sincere New Republicans could take would be to publicly denounce theocracy and wholeheartedly support the separation of Church and State. And then behave accordingly. They would have to eliminate racism and find ways to win elections that didn’t employ evil like the “Southern Strategy.” There is so much wrong with today’s GOP that a list of things they need to do would take up several pages.

    But Republicans will do none of these things.* Rather than accept them as part of a free and open society, they will continue to pretend that they are the doctrines of socialism and tyranny. Nothing will come of Flake’s speech, because his are the words of a quitter, not someone who will work tirelessly to undo the damage he and his party have done.

    I’m afraid that all Corker and Flake are talking about doing will take us back to 2012, before Trump appeared, but long after the GOP had become a complete disaster. I’m pretty sure both Corker and Flake have supported the Trump agenda without fail. That’s not a prescription for renewal. They want Trump gone, but they’ll still be committed to power and control through lies, voter suppression, racism, etc.

    *(There are many more things that Republicans would have to do to become a positive force in America. I doubt they will do any of them. Jettisoning McConnell and Ryan would be a great way to begin, but if today’s Republicans opted for a change in leadership, it would almost certainly be for people even worse than McConnell and Ryan.)

  214. 214

    @Major Major Major Major: I don’t remember. But my formal schooling has been in English since kindergarten but I could read and write Marathi too, since I was 5 at least.

  215. 215
    Mnemosyne says:


    The weird thing about film is that most of the great film romances have unhappy endings. Think about it: Casablanca. The Way We Were. Gone With the Wind. It’s actually pretty hard to find a Hollywood romance that has a happy ending. I do wonder if that helped tip the scales away from La La Land and towards Moonlight since the latter was the one with the unusual ending in movie terms. Honestly, I was a little worried they were going to blow it at the last minute and tack on a downer “realistic” ending but, nope, they stuck the landing after all.

  216. 216
    jl says:

    @Matt McIrvin:” We could walk straight into it with bipartisan support just like Iraq. ”

    If something that insane starts to develop, then time to take to the streets again, like before Iraq invasion. And a public campaign to pester Congress that dwarfs what was done for the attempted GOP health care theft.

  217. 217
    eemom says:


    WWI and WWII weren’t the end of Germany

    No, just 80 million people. Thanks for the perspective, though.

  218. 218

    @schrodingers_cat: probably would be (at least) English for you then. I think “first language” is really just clunky shorthand for every language you learned well before the end of your critical acquisition period.

  219. 219
    jl says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: You’ve never been to Baud 2016! rally? Amazing how much can be communicated with grunts, farts, hiccups and burps. Very expressive language, if you study it well.

  220. 220
    Caphilldcne says:

    @Shana: oh I know. I’m not sure if they have him every year. Tiresome. My new friend from Focus on the Gamily and I have agreed to disagree on Masterpiece Cakes case. Otherwise a non-volatile night with conservatives who are a little uncomfortable with Trump and a very small smattering of Dem staffers working in crossover issues.

  221. 221
    frosty says:

    @HeleninEire: Oh, hell. Just to let you know, I’d miss your voice…. er, um, typing?

  222. 222
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Major Major Major Major:

    I think “first language” usually means the language that one’s parents spoke at home, as opposed to languages you learned at school. But it never seems to account for people whose families were bilingual and didn’t stick to a single language at home.

  223. 223

    @eemom: I take it you’re not actually going to respond on any of the substance of how this country differs from Weimar Germany, then. Can’t say I’m surprised, but recognising that our judiciary, academia, and civil service aren’t stuffed through with fascists and their fellow travellers and that our economy isn’t suffering thousandfold inflation per month doesn’t mean I’m “an idiot lamb to the slaughter”; it means I’m historically literate enough not to make inappropriate comparisons. You’re obviously not going to be dissuaded from continuing to preach panic, but the only likely result it’s going to have is demoralising people.

    Like most Jews, some of my relatives died in concentration camps, BTW. Clearly you don’t give a shit about how anyone else perceives you, but others may find the context clarifying.

  224. 224
    eric says:

    @Mnemosyne: I think …. As Good as it Gets is one.

  225. 225
    Mnemosyne says:

    Just finished some tasty chicken kabob and rice for dinner. Debating if I want to buy some fancy popcorn, or go next door for some mini pies, or both. 🤔

  226. 226
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Mnemosyne: My grand-daughter is being brought up in two. At 27 months of age, her vocabulary is still small, but she seems to have figured out which language belongs with whom. I wish there were a way to expose her to three or four – they are veritable sponges. If things go the way they are going now, it is possible that if (when?) my son has children, they could have three languages at home. I’d be delighted.

  227. 227
    Mnemosyne says:


    Yes, but that’s not considered a Great Romance like Casablanca. It’s a romantic comedy. I can’t think of a romantic drama not based on a Jane Austen or other English novel that has a happy ending.

  228. 228
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))): This evening she is here for a fight. This isn’t always the case, but on occasion it is. This happens to be one of those times.

  229. 229

    @Mnemosyne: That’s the definition I am familiar with.
    @eemom: One budget != two World Wars.
    We can still turn this around in 2018. Success is in no way guaranteed, but we have to try. As for Flake and others if the Rs are fighting among themselves, it will help the Ds. I have no illusions about Flake or Corker or McCain or Collins.

  230. 230
    Citizen Alan says:


    If in 2017 you are still a loyal Republican, then I consider you my enemy and hope you burn in hell.

  231. 231

    @Mnemosyne: well, when somebody says “English is not my first language” they’re explaining a lack of fluency, not saying their parents spoke Spanish and they didn’t start learning English until kindergarten (plenty early enough to be a native speaker).

  232. 232

    @Mnemosyne: I have literally never hated a film ending as much as I hated the ending of La La Land. Never. I loved the rest of the film (small reservations about its white saviour undertones aside). The ending almost ruined the whole thing for me, and I haven’t been able to watch the whole film since. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the ending is the main thing that lost it Best Picture.

    (For a short version of why I hated it: [spoiler warning] 1. I hate love triangles in general. I find the way they’re almost always treated in fiction to marginalise anyone who isn’t monogamous, which can have serious real-world social consequences, as the non-monogamous are routinely subject to [entirely legal] discrimination. 2. The writing was just fucking sloppy. It’s like they gave us five chapters of a TV series, skipped the sixth one, and then gave us the last scene. The film would’ve been a complete story without the time skip. With the time skip, it isn’t a complete story; the time skip introduces a number of questions and doesn’t answer a one of them. 3. Having one of the leads end up with a character introduced in the ending scene is like having a murder mystery where the murderer is introduced in the final scene: it violates one of the fundamental rules of romance or mystery writing, respectively. I don’t mind that the ending was bittersweet; I mind that there was literally no closure whatsoever.

    The only way I was able to keep the ending from completely ruining the film for me is that I developed an esoteric reading of it. It is so tonally inconsistent with the rest of the film that it feels like a “what if” story. It’s presented as though it is a film – and since Stone’s character is an actress, it could be. Actually, the way it’s presented, the imagine spot Stone’s character has could be more reflective of what happened in her life than the rest of the epilogue is. I realise I’m simply reasoning myself out of what Chazelle’s intention probably actually was, but I support Death of the Author to a certain extent, so fuck it. None of this fixes my issue with the love triangle, though.)

    Casablanca’s ending is perfect, but yeah, not that happy. Then again, there are some great romances with happy endings – Some Like It Hot and When Harry Met Sally come to mind. Come to think of it, if it’s a “romantic comedy”, it’ll probably have a happy ending, but otherwise, probably not. (And most romcoms are crap, but there are occasional outliers.) Moonlight stands out for being a rare case of a romantic non-comedy with a happy ending.

  233. 233
    NobodySpecial says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))): Once upon a time, eemom was one of the self appointed deputies of BJ. She goes off the edepp end reliving her salad days every now and again. Ignore her, she hates that.

  234. 234
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Major Major Major Major: I do sometimes say “English is not my first language,” yet I think I’m reasonably fluent in it.

  235. 235

    @Gin & Tonic: I would say English is my first language, its the language I most comfortable expressing myself in, both in speech and writing. My spoken Marathi and written Marathi is pretty good but not as good as my English. As for Hindi, I am quite self conscious speaking in Hindi with a native speaker.

  236. 236
    eemom says:


    I am not preaching panic. I am just incredulous that you people continue to fall for the bullshit of any elected official with an R after its name in the face of their uniform record of the last 20+ years. It really is a case of Charlie Brown and Lucy and the football.

    Anyway, delude on. I have better things to do.

  237. 237
    Omnes Omnibus says:


    its the language I most comfortable expressing myself in, both in speech and writing.

    I would say that that is defining factor. I doubt that anyone is equally comfortable in every language that they know.

  238. 238
    Citizen_X says:


    Is grunting considered a language?

    Rude gestures constitute a language, right?

  239. 239

    @eemom: For the third time, elected Republicans who are not actively calling for the president*’s impeachment are collaborators. If you’re still confused about what I think of them, I suggest looking up the meaning of the word and how it has historically been used. I realise you’ve already decided you know what I mean better than I do, but repeating a false statement isn’t actually going to make it any more correct than it was the first time. And by treating this country as equivalent to Weimar Germany you are in fact preaching panic.

    Bored now. Unless you actually bother responding on substance this’ll probably be my last response to you tonight.

  240. 240
    Barbara says:

    @Mnemosyne: Probably dated, but here is a link to a classic about the foundational myth of romance in the west. It’s called “Love in the Western World,” by Denis de Rougement, and its hypothesis is more or less that fulfillment destroys romance and that’s why most great western romances have unhappy endings.

  241. 241
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    So…. the latest Clinton scandal is that her campaign paid for the Steele dossier*, but for reasons understandable only in her uniquely devious and nefarious mind, sat on it until after the election, when (as I recall the timeline) she had British colleagues of Steele slip a copy to John McCain at an international security conference?

    * the links to Clinton, the campaign, the law firm that hired the research firm that hired Steele get more tenuous as you read on, but my oh my the fantods are getting warmer and warmer among Politico types, and Jethrene Huckabee and Fredo are declaring that now we know the real Russian scandal

  242. 242
  243. 243
    SFAW says:


    I have better things to do.

    Thanks for sharing.

  244. 244
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Major Major Major Major: I’d heard that too, but they’re back to saying “unknown Republican” was the first Fusion client. Sounds like when said anon-R quit paying, Fusion went to a lawyer who worked for the campaign and said, you wanna pick this up, and said lawyer said, oh yeah.

  245. 245
    Barbara says:

    @Major Major Major Major: It sounds like a Republican candidate commissioned the research and then it was somehow taken over on Clinton’s behalf. I would be disappointed if she (and other candidates) had not undertaken research to dig up dirt on Trump. I am only sorry they didn’t find it in time and that the press was so supine that it didn’t even try to rise to the challenge.

  246. 246
    frosty says:

    @Mnemosyne: @eric: Notting Hill had a good ending. Didn’t most of Hugh Grant’s movies? And Cary Grant’s, too.

  247. 247
    Eric U. says:

    @Gin & Tonic: I wish I had learned languages when I was young. Been trying to learn French for 8 years, and am getting nowhere. I could understand numbers well enough to make change when i was in France, but not much more. My son, OTOH, is pretty good at Spanish, and taught himself French, Latin and some German. I have wondered if it was because he started learning Spanish when he was 6. Or he’s just really good at learning things, must have gotten that from his mother.

  248. 248
    Boatboy_srq says:

    @HeleninEire: what’s safest – physically, fiscally, familialy and psychologically – and stay with us. We need you.

  249. 249
    frosty says:

    @Mnemosyne: Oh. Never mind my last comment. “Great Romance”. I dunno.

  250. 250
    O. Felix Culpa says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))): I have never literally hated a film through and through as I did La La Land. Fatuous trifle. I had seen Moonlight the week before which was every bit as beautiful and deep and moving as you describe it to be. La La Land was a flea’s fart in comparison.

  251. 251


    I am just incredulous that you people continue to fall for the bullshit of any elected official with an R after its name in the face of their uniform record of the last 20+ years.

    Saint Ronnie set the pace in 1981, Gaia fucking save me. Old wine, new skins; these two-bit ratfuck soulless criminals haven’t skipped a beat. It’s like watching a junkie crash, they can’t get as high anymore on the Moral Majority-anti-abortion-scary-brown-people kick, now the fuckers are mainlining white nationalism to get their fucking rocks off. And the same brand of sycophants is along for the ride. Knowing these shitheads run all three branches of my federal government makes me want to retch when its not scaring the beGaia out of me.

  252. 252
    eric says:

    @Mnemosyne: point taken, though i think Casablanca is a happy ending ;)

  253. 253
    tobie says:

    @TriassicSands:”I’m afraid that all Corker and Flake are talking about doing will take us back to 2012.”

    My hunch based on nothing but a conviction that every Republican is out for nothing but himself is that the two know indictments will be coming down soon and want to position themselves as the voice of conscience to run for POTUS in 2020. I have no evidence of any of this…it just makes narrative sense. They’re burnishing their credibility as truth tellers.

  254. 254
    zhena gogolia says:


    You must love Claude Rains as much as I do.

  255. 255
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @eric: For those who might be unaware, it will be shown on the big screen on November 12 and 15 by Fathom Events. Look them up to find your local participating theater.

  256. 256
    frosty says:


    I have literally never hated a film ending as much as I hated the ending of La La Land. Never.

    Agreed. My wife and I read it as Hollywood’s love letter to Hollywood. Stupid schmucks couldn’t figure out how one of them could take a break to support the other? Sacrifice love for a career? Hollywood assholes, all the way.

    PS Now I’ll go read the rest of what I expect is your far more erudite comment. :-)

  257. 257
    eric says:

    @zhena gogolia: Yes, and I am a HUGE Bogart fan. It is no exaggeration to say i have seen Casablanca 50 times. I just rewatched Maltese Falcon the other day.

    Thanks Gin & Tonic for the info.

  258. 258

    @Mnemosyne: The most celebrated love story in Indian cinema, Devdas, is a tragedy too. The movie has been made 3 times in Hindi.

  259. 259
    frosty says:


    Rude gestures constitute a language, right?

    Definitely. Why, at one time I could flip the bird in three languages and two dialects of American.

  260. 260
    SFAW says:

    It may have already been noted — too lazy to read all 743 comments to check — but Flake’s fig leaf was that he was complaining about Shitgibbon’s tone, not his policies [sic]. That’s how he rationalizes the voting-with-Shitgibbon-107-percent-of-the-time thing. It would be interesting to see if he voted with Shitgibbon when Shitgibbon pushed something non-assholish (meaning non-Rethug) for a vote.

    I expect Bed-o-Kelp Flake would still vote with Shitgibbon, and find some other way to weasel. Because he’s a Rethug.

  261. 261
    Barbara says:

    @tobie: I wish I could be so optimistic about imminent indictments, but Flake’s decision appears to be tied to his impending doom during the primary. He wrapped himself in virtue but I would hazard that he quit mostly in order to let someone less awful than Ward vie for the nomination. Other more mainstream candidates are willing to challenge Ward but were not willing to challenge Flake. Corker is probably the more principled character here, but we are talking in very relative terms.

  262. 262
    sharl says:

    Further validation for the response from the DNC and John Cole:


    WITH NATIONAL ATTENTION focused Tuesday morning on a mushrooming feud between President Trump and Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., followed by a feud in the afternoon between Trump and Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., the Senate gift-wrapped the biggest present Congress has so far bestowed upon Wall Street in the Trump era.

    With a razor-thin margin, the Senate passed a resolution to nullify a signature regulation from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which banned forced arbitration provisions. Such clauses, tucked into the fine print of contracts that nobody reads, deny consumers the ability to contest claims through a class-action lawsuit, and can allow banks and other financial institutions to rip off their customers with virtual impunity.

    Both Sens. Corker and Flake, along with Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., joined in the effort to give Trump a major win, even if it will hurt many of his own voters. Consumer advocates had hoped that moderate Republicans Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Susan Collins of Maine would block the GOP effort. They did not.

    Only GOP Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and John Kennedy of Louisiana bucked their party — but a no vote when the measure passes is not much of a bucking. In a sign of how far the Democratic Party has come in recent years, all 48 members of the Senate caucus voted to keep the arbitration rule.

    The vote was split 50-50, which required Vice President Mike Pence to break the tie.

    Jeff Flake, hero of the resistance, votes yes on Trump's priority to deny ripped-off consumers a right to trial— David Dayen (@ddayen) October 25, 2017

    Interested in Kay’s response to this; I know she has discussed Cordray and Ohio politics before, though I forget how enthused she was over the idea:

    If I'm Cordray, Congress & the exec branch have declared war on my agency, I maybe resign tomorrow & start the #OHGov campaign— David Dayen (@ddayen) October 25, 2017

    The replies to that last tweet express concern about the fate of Cordray’s CFPB if he resigns, but Dayen noted that he terms out next July anyway, and if the GOP in Congress can get away with what they did today with no repurcussions, they can probably get away with further whittling down the CFPB whether or not he’s there.

  263. 263
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @SFAW: Not taking a position on that, but he’s just published an op-ed in the WaPo comparing 45 to Joe McCarthy.

  264. 264
    SFAW says:


    Why, at one time I could flip the bird in three languages and two dialects of American.

    “Back in the day,” every kid growing up in or near NYC could do that. Left- AND right-handed, forward and backward, and in five or more NYC dialects (e.g., Canarsie, Sheepshead Bay, Bensonhoist, Hell’s Kitchen, Corona, Riverdale — but NOT Staten Island)

  265. 265
    Aleta says:

    from WSJ

    The Manhattan U.S. attorney’s office is pursuing an investigation into possible money laundering by Paul Manafort, said three people familiar with the matter, adding to the federal and state probes concerning the former Trump campaign chairman.

    The investigation by the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York is being conducted in collaboration with a probe by special counsel Robert Mueller into Mr. Manafort and possible money laundering, according to two of these people.

    A spokesman for Mr. Manafort declined to comment. Mr. Manafort has previously said he did nothing wrong.

    The continuing Manhattan U.S. attorney’s probe, which hasn’t been previously reported, is unfolding at the same time the Brooklyn U.S. attorney’s office pursues an inquiry involving Kushner Cos., owned by the family of President Donald Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner.

    Mr. Trump has interviewed and is poised to nominate candidates to lead the prosecutorial offices in both Manhattan and Brooklyn. The probes could complicate the confirmation process, especially because Mr. Trump is considering individuals with ties to his personal lawyer and to a political ally.

  266. 266
    SFAW says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    but he’s just published an op-ed in the WaPo comparing 45 to Joe McCarthy.

    Does he mention Roy Cohn? (may Cohn, that evil fuck, burn in Hell forever).

  267. 267
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @SFAW: in seventh grade it was a matter of great import to my friends and I to figure out if the optimal way to flip the bird was with The Finger sticking up all by itself, or with the other fingers bent at the second knuckle to support it. The Finger, that is

  268. 268
    SFAW says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    You clearly were focused on the right things in those days. It is a lost art, I’m afraid.

    ETA: Not saying that you aren’t focused on the right things now, of course.

  269. 269

    @SFAW: Cohn was Trump’s mentor in evil.

    He was also the model for Shaw’s mother in The Manchurian Candidate.

    Conclusion? Donald Trump is the kindest, warmest, bravest, most wonderful human being I have ever known in my life.

  270. 270
    Boatboy_srq says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))): Let me put this another way. The same hypoctritical critics of tRump are at least as likely to be happy as clams with a pResident Pence. The only political distinctions between tRump and Pence are that the latter is likely to do far less damage to his own side and he’s proficient in dogwhistle. Simply denouncing Lord Dampnut is not enough. They have to renounce the entire toxic philosophy, or the damage will continue in slightly nicer framing.

  271. 271
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @SFAW: I still remember my dad’s glee (oh so many years ago) when, in the process of flipping someone off, he realized that the Volvo had an open sunroof and he could go vertical.

  272. 272
    Another Scott says:

    @Baud: A seemingly very irregular poster.



  273. 273
    Scott Alloway says:

    Thank you, John. It needed saying.

  274. 274
    SFAW says:


    Cohn was Trump’s mentor in evil.

    Yes, I know. There is also a reasonable possibility that Joe McCarthy was Cohn’s pawn/catspaw/stooge. Hence my mention of Cohn in response to G&T talking about the Op-Ed

  275. 275
    J R in WV says:


    Cole needs to calm down. Take a deep breath.

    P.S.: I am a loyal Republican because I believe in fiscal discipline …

    Surely you jest? Please tell me so!!!

  276. 276
    SFAW says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Given that anecdote, I guess I’m a little surprised that your nym is not a Swedish saying of some sort. But I thought Wisconsin was more German than Swedish?

  277. 277
    Aleta says:

    @HeleninEire: Very sorry for your family difficulty. Hope you can return to Ireland soon. I remember how exhausting it is to figure out the care for someone in distress, and from a long distance. Important to take good care–good food, maybe hot baths, etc and especially seeing friends. Best to you.

  278. 278
    SFAW says:

    @J R in WV:

    Don’t call him Shirley?

  279. 279
    frosty says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: Those are my two dialects, East Coast and West Coast respectively. I never saw the second until I lived in California.

  280. 280
    Mnemosyne says:


    Moonlight stands out for being a rare case of a romantic non-comedy with a happy ending.

    Exactly. Romantic dramas almost always have an unhappy ending — if the couple doesn’t break up, one of them dies. That’s why I got very nervous at the end of Moonlight: I was going to be pissed if they threw in a last-minute downer ending. Luckily, the filmmakers were smarter than that.

  281. 281

    @Boatboy_srq: Well, by all accounts, the VP* earned the nickname “Dense”. I agree, though, that he’s probably likely to engage in fewer own goals than the president*, but at the same time, he also has the charisma of a wet blanket.

    I’m also not sure how much any of this matters, because I suspect Mueller has him dead to rights on about two dozen counts of perjury already. Seriously, the guy is almost as much a pathological liar as the president*; he’s just able to do it with a soft voice and calm expression, so people sometimes miss it. As just one example, we know for certain that he knew damn well that Flynn was dirty during his time as head of the transition team, but didn’t do a damn thing about it. I’m sure the VP* is every bit as complicit as the president* is.

    And another thing I’m certain of is that if the president* goes down, he isn’t going to go down alone. He’s too much of a malignant narcissist not to want to bring down as many other people with him as he can, and while he may be in the early stages of dementia, I also think he still remembers where enough bodies are buried to do real and lasting harm to several prominent GOP officials – in particular, McConnell, whom we know he absolutely loathes, and probably Ryan as well. I suspect both of them have more than enough complicity with Russia to be convicted of numerous felonies.

    Ultimately, actually, sometimes I think that’s the main thing keeping prominent GOP leaders from turning on the president*: they’re all guilty. They’ve done too much flagrantly illegal and probably treasonous stuff to trust each other – it’s a political form of mutually assured destruction. If one of them goes down, they’re worried that the rest of them will end up going down too. And I think there’s a very realistic chance that that’s correct. All the prominent members of the GOP (possibly excluding Hatch) have almost certainly committed acts that, at the bare minimum, qualify as espionage – at worst, treason. We’re talking capital offences here.

    I agree that ideally the whole philosophy needs to be renounced, and very few have even come close to doing so (Jen Rubin is one of the few I can think of who has; she’s not perfect yet, but I’ve been surprised at how thorough her denunciations of not just the GOP’s style but the GOP’s substance have been). But I think there’s a lot more to it than the philosophy. I think they’ve jumped on top of this tiger (apologies to Hobbes and Tony for the defamatory comparison) and they’re afraid that if they jump off, the tiger will eat them. And they could very well be right.

    Of course, I don’t know what the solution to any of this is – I’m hoping Mueller and Schneiderman unearth all the dirt there is to be found, but they end up finding dirt on as many elected GOP officials as I think they will, I have no idea what the legal ramifications would be. I’m far from being a lawyer, but I can’t imagine any lawyer knows for sure either – AFAIK, we’re in uncharted Constitutional territory here. I can’t imagine the Framers ever expected this many members of the legislative and executive branches would collude with a hostile foreign power to gain positions in government. This is the sort of thing that’s been giving me difficulty sleeping sometimes (plus the expected nuclear war and health insurance worries).

  282. 282

    @Mnemosyne: Agreed. The ending is almost unique in cinematic history, actually. Of course, almost everything else about the film is unique, too.

  283. 283
    SFAW says:


    Although it’s not at the level of Moonlight (artistically), where would you put Passengers? I think of it as a rom-dram, not a rom-com, and it had a relatively happy ending.

  284. 284
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @SFAW: This occurred in Connecticut. Did I not mention a Volvo?

  285. 285
    slag says:

    Thank you. These guys could have done this for real back when it actually meant something. Now, it just looks like yet another round of self-aggrandizement and CYAing.

    And if I hear one more “liberal” exclaim how they miss GW, I’m going to lose it. America’s PR firms simply have it way too fucking easy in this world.

  286. 286
    Mnemosyne says:


    The vote was split 50-50, which required Vice President Mike Pence to break the tie.

    Hopefully Democratic consultants are writing the commercials right now.

  287. 287
    Brachiator says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    in seventh grade it was a matter of great import to my friends and I to figure out if the optimal way to flip the bird was with The Finger sticking up all by itself, or with the other fingers bent at the second knuckle to support it.

    The classic display is The Finger up with the other two fingers bent at the knuckle in support. They are representative of the balls, if you get my drift.

  288. 288
    Lizzy L says:

    shari got in ahead of me; I was just dropping by to post this:

    Senate Republicans struck down a Consumer Financial Protection Bureau rule that would have allowed Americans to sue banks and credit card companies just before it was due to take effect. Pence cast the deciding vote. The two Republicans who voted with the Democrats? Graham and Kennedy (Louisiana). The CFPB rule was strongly supported by Consumers Union and most veterans’ groups. The bill which killed it was supported by the credit card companies and the bankers.

    Flake voted for the bill, of course, as did McCain, Collins, Murkowski — all the “principled” Republicans. Who are still Republicans. Fuck them.

  289. 289
  290. 290
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Lizzy L: Sure, fuck them. But let’s make the most of any of them turning on Trump over anything. Saying good for Flake for saying what he said today doesn’t mean that anyone thinks Flake is a good guy overall.

  291. 291
    Mnemosyne says:


    Haven’t seen it. Is it the sci-fi movie with Chris Pratt and whatshername?

  292. 292
    Mnemosyne says:


    And if I hear one more “liberal” exclaim how they miss GW, I’m going to lose it.

    I “miss” GW the same way I “miss” a nasty bout of food poisoning compared to being diagnosed with cancer.

  293. 293

    @SFAW: I felt Passengers was a decent film that could’ve been better, but I also felt like a lot of its critics watched a different film than I did. I never got the impression that the film was telling us that either of its characters’ actions were particularly commendable or romantic; simply that they were human. It was a fucked-up romance between two fucked-up people that, thanks to the characters’ choice to work together to overcome their issues and a few lucky breaks, wound up having a happy ending anyway.

    Some critics seem to have felt that the film glossed over the unfortunate implications of Jim’s actions and… I didn’t think it did? We’re pretty obviously meant to sympathise with Aurora when she attacks him. What’s more, the film makes it obvious that he agonises over his actions for months and hates himself for going through with them. I never got the impression that the film was saying that his actions were in any way commendable – it explicitly compares him to a drowning man who reaches out to another person in panic, which increases the likelihood of them both drowning. Not commendable, but human.

    That said, the film doesn’t really give us any answers to some of the questions it raises. I wasn’t particularly bothered by that – I don’t know if there are answers to some of those questions, and I’m not sure a Hollywood romance would be capable of providing them anyway. I did feel that the last third of the film conflicted tonally with the first two; it was as though they needed stakes, a typical Hollywood action sequence, and a happy ending. At the same time, I didn’t mind it that much, either. After the bleak first 2/3 of the film, if they’d carried on like that for the rest of the film it would’ve been unbearable.

    I definitely don’t get the impression that the film was at all glamorising the characters’ choices (particularly Jim’s), though. Honestly, it felt to me while I was in the cinema like the filmmakers were telegraphing the message that Jim’s decisions were fucked up too heavily, but apparently a lot of people came out reading it the opposite way, so maybe I just tend to favour so much subtlety that the intended message will end up getting lost on the audience. (Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? and Slaughterhouse-Five are two of my favourite novels, and Dick and Vonnegut were so subtle about aspects of their messages that many readers ended up completely misinterpreting both of them, so that’s quite likely, now that I think about it.)

    Overall I’d consider it cinematic fast food: not the sort of thing you’d want to see all the time, but fine for what it is, and fun every once in awhile. I’d probably give it a 6 or 7 out of 10.

    And yeah, as far as Hollywood romantic dramas go, it was a fairly optimistic ending. More optimistic than most, even.

    @Mnemosyne: Yep, that’s the one.

  294. 294
    Brachiator says:


    Although it’s not at the level of Moonlight (artistically), where would you put Passengers? I think of it as a rom-dram, not a rom-com, and it had a relatively happy ending.

    Or a relatively unhappy ending, depending on how you look at it. If you had to pigeonhole it, it is more drama than comedy. But it wasn’t sci fi enough for some people, nor romance enough for others.

    The Big Sick, which I saw recently is a romantic comedy where someone kinda dies.

  295. 295
    Lizzy L says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: I’m glad that Flake said what he said. But I’m not going to call him a “hero,” as a friend of mine (someone who normally has a lot more sense) did on FB. Same with McCain. I’m happy he voted against the Senate healthcare bill. But I’m not going to kiss his feet.

  296. 296
    slag says:

    @Mnemosyne: Sorry but GW was skin cancer that has spread to the brain.

  297. 297
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Lizzy L: Did I say you should call him a hero or kiss his feet?

    ETA: Did I even imply something like that?

  298. 298
    SFAW says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Did I not mention a Volvo?

    I was unaware that Volvos are restricted to the wilds of CT.

    I saw “Volvo,” recalled that you seem to fetishize Saabs, and drew a completely worng conclusion. Shit, does that mean I’m turning into a RWNJ? Shit.

  299. 299
    Brachiator says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))): Passengers and another movie that came out during that movie season caused a number of people to vehemently disapprove of the actions of the characters on ethical or moral grounds. And this was moviegoers, not just critics. I heard podcasts and conversations in the real world where people insisted that Chris Pratt had no right to make the decision he did, and that Jennifer Lawrence should have rejected him, and any other choice diminished her as a person.

    A number of people hated The Arrival because they strongly felt that the protagonist should not have had a child, given what she knew about the future.

    Btw, I loved The Arrival and liked Passengers, but felt that it could not overcome bad script choices.

  300. 300
    sharl says:

    @Mnemosyne: Hopefully Democratic consultants are writing the commercials right now.

    Damn straight, especially since this is one of those things that will piss off a lot of the less prosperous Trumpkins; it will impact them as well. It may not anger many of them enough to put aside their racism and general sense of aggrievement, but in a close election it might be enough to make a difference, if not by bringing them to the Dem side, then at least maybe demotivating them from voting.

  301. 301
    Lizzy L says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: No, you didn’t. I didn’t intend to imply it. Apologies — long day, tired, etc.

  302. 302
    Mnemosyne says:


    Which would make Trump … ?

  303. 303

    @Brachiator: I didn’t even know there was a controversy about Arrival. FWIW, I would place Arrival alongside Moonlight as one of two essentially flawless films released last year (though obviously, I rank Moonlight much more highly).

    Personally, my reading is that Lawrence’s character should be able to make any damn choice she thinks will bring her fulfilment, as long as she’s not ruining anyone else’s life by doing so. But I am male-presenting, so take my stance with a grain of salt, I guess.

    And yeah, I think I felt more or less the same way about Passengers as you did. It was a decent film, but there were some writing choices that kept it from being a great one.

  304. 304
    SFAW says:


    Is it the sci-fi movie with Chris Pratt and whatshername?

    Yes. I’m guessing that she’s not in your Top 1000 Fave Actresses List?


    [Apologies in advance for any potential spoilers. Will try to keep it as non-specific as I can.]

    I think you’re over-thinking it a little, but as I indicated, it’s not exactly Citizen Kane, artistically. I don’t think there was any attempt to make Pratt’s actions appear commendable or romantic; I think the director/screenwriter tried to show Pratt was desperate, and that desperation led him to a decision that he knew was wrong, but convinced himself that it was … well … not OK, but semi-acceptable. It was either that, or suicide. It’s an ethical dilemma that could be discussed for a while, certainly. Lawrence’s reaction, when she finds out, is about what one would expect. (I don’t mean that in a snarky or condescending way.) I think the ending was about as optimistic as it could be, considering the time frames involved. I think some of the plot devices were a little too “and then a miracle occurs”-like, but they weren’t too bad.

  305. 305
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @SFAW: Dude, have you been to Fairfield County, CT: Saabs are there too – for the eccentrics. Volvos are easily the most Trad WASP-mobile. Beemers and Mercs for the flashy – ew. Saab WASPs are more likely to X-C ski than Alpine ( I do both) Also, less likely to golf.

  306. 306
    SFAW says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Dude, have you been to Fairfield County, CT

    More times than I can count. But because I have a life, I don’t go around counting cars by make. But there are a ton of Volvos in Central MA, as well as a ton of Subarus (in the Worcester snow-belt areas). Saabs, not so much, because there’s at least a modicum of good taste here.

    Is that where you’re from, originally? Apologies for not recalling.

  307. 307
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @SFAW: I spent middle school in Newtown. Yeah, that Newtown.

  308. 308
    Mnemosyne says:


    She keeps starring in movies I have no interest in seeing. Not sure why.

  309. 309
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Mnemosyne: Am I misreading? You don’t like Jennifer Lawrence?

  310. 310

    @SFAW: That’s actually pretty close to my reading as well. (And again, I consider it cinematic fast food.) It was obvious he was suicidal and not at all in his right frame of mind when he took that particular course of action. Indeed, I don’t see how the film could’ve possibly been less subtle about any of that.

    (I’m also going to try to keep this as non-spoilery as I can, but obviously, it’s not going to be completely devoid of spoilers.)

    Regardless, a lot of people seem to have treated it as though it was some sort of Twilight-level romanticised stalking and… bwuh? I don’t get it. If you’re going to criticise the film’s messaging on any point, the only valid point I see is that the ending could arguably be said to override some of the film’s messaging earlier on, because things do work out for the best, and indeed, if Aurora hadn’t been present, they all would’ve died. But… at the same time, it strikes me as a pretty weak criticism. From an in-universe standpoint, it’s like saying “Hillary Clinton should’ve known in advance that the FBI director would call her a crook 10 days before the election.” There’s no possible way Jim could’ve known that he’d need someone else to help save the entire ship from destruction at the time, so it isn’t at all an ethical justification for his actions.

    Overall, the central ethical quandaries of the film seem to be, firstly, how much destruction a person can do to another person’s life before they become irredeemable, and secondly, what becomes necessary to make up for the destruction. I get that a lot of audience members wouldn’t have forgiven Jim in Aurora’s place. Which is fine. What I don’t get is some people’s assertion that her decision to forgive him makes her a bad person, or that it completely ruins the film. One can argue that the writer’s choice to end the film a particular way suggests particular attitudes about humanity and/or romance – fine. But it almost seems like some people were determined to come out of the film with the most unflattering possible reading.

    Ultimately, I felt she forgave him because: (1) she went through a literal near-drowning experience, meaning that it couldn’t possibly have been less subtly communicated to her how desperate Jim had been. Indeed, that’s the exact metaphor that had just been used to describe his circumstances to her. Honestly, this is, again, one of the reasons I felt the film was too blatant with its messaging. A lot of people seem to have missed elements of the writing that seemed clear as day to me. I can only think of two ways the film could have telegraphed any more strongly that this scene was about the necessity of human contact: (a) by literally flashing on the screen “THIS IS A METAPHOR ABOUT THE NECESSITY OF HUMAN CONTACT,” or (b) by having her literally state what she’d drawn from the experience out loud later in the film.

    (2) He figured out a way for her to go back to cryosleep and continue her own life as planned, even though this meant he would never see her again. In other words, he did pretty much everything he possibly could have done to make up for ruining her life. It might not’ve made up for waking her up in the first place and then deceiving her about it… but again, this ties into the ethical quandaries I cited above. You may not agree with the answers the film comes up with, which is fine. But I read a lot of reviews that suggested the film didn’t even ask these questions, which is why I feel like I watched a different film than the critics.

    (3) She realised she’d been happier with him than she’d been at any previous point of her life. That’s a pretty important reason.

    So… I mean. Again, I don’t feel the film glamorises its characters’ selfish decisions in any way. They’re pretty messed up people, and I feel the film went out of its way to emphasise that.

    I may be overthinking some, most, or all of this, and I agree that it’s far from a perfect film. But at the same time, I definitely feel like a lot of the alleged flaws its critics cited are just flat-out misreadings.

  311. 311
    SFAW says:


    She keeps starring in movies I have no interest in seeing. Not sure why.

    Can’t tell if you’re being ironic (or whatever). If they make a movie of Hamilton, and she’s one of the leads (along with LMM) would you go? Or would that be an ethical (so to speak) dilemma?

  312. 312

    @Omnes Omnibus: Her choice of material, rather, was how I read it.

  313. 313
    Ruckus says:


    I “miss” GW the same way I “miss” a nasty bout of food poisoning compared to being diagnosed with cancer.

    Had both. I was sure I was going to die with the first case of food poisoning. Still amazed I didn’t. The second wasn’t as bad. Still not recommended either way. Cancer? Yeah that’s fun. Especially if you’ve had family members die from it, that’s the special ingredient. I’m almost 3 1/2 yrs in and I still have to wait to see if all the fun actually worked.
    And I still would rather have all of that again rather than GWB. And yet…… while he was fucking horrible, somehow he seems better than drumpf. I can’t put my finger on it, but he just does. Of course it’s like asking not if you want cancer, but which one would you rather have.

  314. 314
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))): At the point in the evening, how many people do you think will read a nine paragraph essay about anything? The spoilers from other things just go in the bank.

    Christ, if it isn’t Casablanca or The Godfather or something similar… Try assuming that movies from the last three years may need a spoiler warning. Or don’t.

  315. 315

    @Ruckus: Much as I hated GWB there was not a single day in his administration where I ever worried I’d perish in a nuclear war. For that reason alone I’d take him over Trumpovich.

    Good luck with the cancer recovery. Apparently you always have to worry about whether it’s ever going to recur. Can’t be fun.

  316. 316

    @Omnes Omnibus: …My (parenthetical) second paragraph is a spoiler warning?

    Also, this is still fairly early in the evening by my standards. If you don’t care, no one’s forcing you to read it.

  317. 317
    SFAW says:


    There’s no possible way Jim could’ve known that he’d need someone else to help save the entire ship from destruction at the time, so it isn’t at all an ethical justification for his actions.

    I don’t think it was an ethical justification, just one of those “and then a miracle occurs” devices I mentioned above.

    Overall, the central ethical quandaries of the film seem to be, firstly, how much destruction a person can do to another person’s life before they become irredeemable, and secondly, what becomes necessary to make up for the destruction.

    Alternatively, it could be “Do acts done out of borderline-suicidal desperation give the person any amount of a ‘pass’?”

    We could probably argue/discuss the various ethical implications and dilemmas until the Jets win the Super Bowl, but I have some work I should finish. [That’s not a blow-off — I’ve enjoyed your analyses — but, unlike some, I need to finish and get some sleep. In a minute.]

  318. 318
    SFAW says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    I spent middle school in Newtown. Yeah, that Newtown.


  319. 319


    Alternatively, it could be “Do acts done out of borderline-suicidal desperation give the person any amount of a ‘pass’?”

    Good point – and that probably factored into Aurora’s calculus at the end of the film as well.

    And yeah, I’ve got other stuff I should be doing, too. I’ve spent way too much time writing today because I’ve found it therapeutic and it’s helped me recentre myself, but I do have other stuff I need to get done over the next couple of weeks. So no worries. And thanks.

  320. 320
    Omnes Omnibus says:


    If you don’t care, no one’s forcing you to read it.

    Point taken. But here is the problem. You made interesting points about politics in the past.

  321. 321

    @Omnes Omnibus: Well, thanks… but I guess just because I’ve made insightful points about politics doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll care about my film analysis, particularly if it’s about a film you don’t particularly care about and/or haven’t seen yet.

    Regardless, as I said above, I do have stuff I should be doing, and it is already pretty late, so I get your point.

  322. 322
    Another Scott says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Subaru Diane hadn’t seen The Princess Bride until a week or so ago.

    Just sayin’…


  323. 323

    @Another Scott: Full confession: I still haven’t seen it. Or The Godfather.

    I’m a terrible person, I know. In my defence, I have severe ADHD and found it almost impossible to sit still for two hours for a lot of my life, even after going on medication. That doesn’t explain why I still haven’t seen them, though, and I’m afraid I don’t have an adequate answer for that one.

  324. 324
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Another Scott: That upsets me on so many levels.

  325. 325
    SFAW says:

    @Another Scott:

    Subaru Diane hadn’t seen The Princess Bride until a week or so ago.

    [Clutches chest, reaches for nitro pills] “I’m coming, Elizabeth! This is the Big One!”

    ETA: Do I dare say what Rosebud was?
    ETA2: And it wasn’t the airplanes that got him. It was beauty, and/or twin-mounted Vickers machine guns that killed the beast.

  326. 326
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @@(((CassandraLeo))): Fuck me. I am sorry i took you seriously.

  327. 327

    @Omnes Omnibus: I never claimed to be a role model.

  328. 328
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))): Taking seriously and role model are rather different. Not sure I should do either anymore.

  329. 329

    @Omnes Omnibus: True.

    I’ve been making a sincere effort to fill in the gaps in my cinematic education this year. Amongst the stuff I’ve watched this year that I hadn’t seen before: Some Like It Hot, Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid, The Man Who Knew Too Much (both versions), Rebecca, Animal House, Bride of Frankenstein, etc. (Also Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, which I think I’d seen bits and pieces of but not the whole thing.) Still, I only have time to fill in so many gaps. FWIW both films are pretty near the top of my “watch ASAP” list but AFAIK haven’t been on TCM lately (if they were I just completely missed it).

    As I admitted above, though, I’m still a terrible person. :p

  330. 330
    slag says:

    @Mnemosyne: The malignant tumor that’s infiltrated our prefrontal cortex.

  331. 331

    @(((CassandraLeo))): …oh, and probably most striking of all, Psycho. (I had, in my defence, at least seen North by Northwest, Strangers on a Train, Rear Window, Vertigo, and yes, even The Birds before this year. And I think one or two other Hitchcock films but it’s getting late and I’m drawing a blank.)

  332. 332
    Brachiator says:


    oh, and probably most striking of all, Psycho. (I had, in my defence, at least seen North by Northwest, Strangers on a Train, Rear Window, Vertigo, and yes, even The Birds before this year.

    There are professional film critics who have not seen some of the films that you have. At this point in the history of cinema, there are too many movies and not enough time. So, enjoy what you can.

  333. 333

    @Brachiator: That’s a good point. The amount of movies (and books, and TV shows, and so on) is almost infinite. I’ll never have time to watch all of them.

    Still, I do feel there are some gaps that need to be filled more urgently than others.

  334. 334
    Missouri Buckeye says:

    @JPL: I call BS. DailyKos didn’t start until 2002.

  335. 335
    lowtechcyclist says:

    Corker voted to immunize banks from lawsuits from the customers they screw over.
    Sasse did the same.
    Flake, ditto.

    Big damn heroes, huh?

    Also: Collins. Murkowski. McCain. Heller. Yep, all those supposed moderates.

    The GOP – even the ‘nicer’ ones – still line up on the side of the big money, and against the little guy.

    Still the Party of Evil.

  336. 336
    SFAW says:


    There are professional film critics who have not seen some of the films that you have.

    … but they heard it/they was/were good. (h/t SNL)

  337. 337
    Seth Owen says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))): The problem is that as soon as they say something the base disagrees with they get booted from the ‘tribe.’ Look how many call McCain a RINO, for example.

    I agree it’s better to have them speak up then not, but I’m not getting my hopes up. I am afraid it’s going to take an actual damn catastrophe (a nuked city or financial crash) to move these people. Nothing less will do. Not even a ‘Katrina’ or a war or a check to Trump signed by Putin himself.

  338. 338
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))): A quibble with your examples: Weimar Germany successfully dealt with the hyperinflation episode. By the time the Nazis rose to power they were having the opposite problem, and it was exacerbated by the government’s fear of more inflation.

    (It doesn’t really affect your point, but I feel compelled to say it just because conservatives are so fond of warning about inflation and the fate of Weimar.)

    Also, I am not as sure as you are that our institutions aren’t shot through with Nazis. I think law enforcement pretty clearly is, on all levels, and has been for a long time. One thing that helps a bit is that cops aren’t revolutionaries by nature–even if they’re white supremacists they mostly want to maintain the status quo without interference. But if the status quo flips Nazi, they’re going to be really enthusiastic enforcers of that.

    Have you been reading the stuff Yonatan Zunger has been posting on Google+? He thinks we’re way past Weimar and into the early Nazi period, that every social reaction to Trump pretty much precisely mirrors the ineffectual stuff liberals and conservatives were doing in Nazi Germany, and that the chances of a Holocaust (which will eventually get around to exterminating the Jews) are pretty high. He’s been arguing in favor of political violence against Nazis, because he thinks any other response is going to be completely toothless.

  339. 339
    J R in WV says:

    To me the Republican Party has been a functional disaster and betrayers of Democracy, Equality and Freedom since FDR’s times. When they decided that their party rule was more important than half the country starving, and say, that Fellow from Austria who seems to be saving Germany from the Jewish Commies, maybe he can save us too! Since then they’ve only gotten worse.

    Nixon, Reagan, GHW Bush, GW Bush the Second and Trump. Murder’s Row of presidential rule, there. All criminals, all opposed to Democracy and Freedom and Equality. Look at what these 5 men have wrought in our sweet Republic!!!

    To help you stop weeping, JFK and LBJ who were both tragically flawed men who worked for equality and freedom, Jimmy Carter who still works to improve the lives of the poor, Clinton and Obama, two of the finest men to every rule any country.

  340. 340
    Mark K says:

    Great post John.

    Moar You Know: Everyone should read “The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich”. Instead of making cute comments or citing some negative review ( one from a conservative no doubt ). I’ve read it twice and it should be necessary reading by every American. Maybe it isn’t because it effectively destroys fascism so thoroughly. The author was in Berlin and saw Hitler many times until having to flee for his life in 1940. Shirer was a great American and was sidelined by McCarthyism but you can’t read that book and not see what a catastrophe we are in the making having elected a demagogue with 50 million Good Germans to back him & his quislings up. I defy anybody to read that and make excuses for us as citizens because Shirer shows that Germany could have made it out of the depression and refinanced their debt but took the cowardly way out and elected a demagogue dictator. They sold their soul and so have we. Without a massive march on DC (something outrageous enough they have to televise it), the forces of corporate owned info & its propaganda and reality bread and circuses…is too strong

    BTW, I hated Moonlighting. Most over-rated movie I’ve ever seen. Thought “Lion” should have won going away.
    Moronic boring dialogue, dumb romantic bits (“aw look honey, they came back to that spot on the beach where they first wacked each other off..sniff sob), and gorgeous photography to hide (non intentional but still..) what a hell hole Liberty City and others like it are in So. Florida. Only good part was the anti-bullying parts but, best picture? It was more like what they call in football a “make-up call”.after years of ignoring good work.

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    Ithink says:

    @Mark K:
    You are SO wrong about your characterization of “Moonlight”! Thoroughly groundbreaking and excellent movie albeit 1 that may not be worthy of multiple views. I’ll definitely check out that ‘Third Reich’ book though!😊

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    Pat Bryan says:

    @jl: If you REALLY “believe in fiscal discipline and have deep concerns about the decay of civility in our public discourse”, then you are definitely in the wrong party.

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