Alexandre Bissonnette Was Radicalized By A Who’s Who of American Right Wing Thought Leaders

Alexandre Bissonnette, the Canadian extreme right terrorist who attacked a Quebec City Mosque last year,was radicalized by a who’s who of American right wing thought leaders. Andy Riga from the Montreal Gazette has the details:

When will Ben Shapiro’s rabbi make a statement about how Bissonnette’s actions are unacceptable and that the speech of his congregant, Shapiro, is also outside the acceptable bounds of Modern Orthodox Judaism? How about John Nolte’s, Tucker Carlson’s, Ann Coulter’s, Kellyanne Conway’s, Laura Ingraham’s, Bret Baier’s, Stefan Molyneux’s, John Sexton’s, James Allsup’s, Neil Turner’s, Stephen Bannon’s, Ben Domenech’s, or Robert O’Neill’s priests or ministers or pastors make a statement that Bissonnette’s actions are unacceptable and that the speech of their congregants listed above are outside the acceptable bounds of Roman Catholicism or whatever version of Protestantism these fine, Christian souls practice? When will Breitbart’s or The Federalist’s or Fox News’s or Breitbart’s or Hot Air’s publishers and funders denounce their employees speech and its consequences?

If every Muslim has to denounce every act of terrorism done in the name of Islam, at the very least the spiritual leaders and employers and financial patrons of these enablers and promoters of anti-Muslim terrorism should have to do the same!

Free speech, especially the most controversial and inflammatory speech, is and should continue to be protected. That does NOT, however, mean that engaging in that speech doesn’t come with a price. The hatred, the vitriol, the bigotry, the extremism that these speakers and commenters and authors spew is rightly protected. Those protections do NOT absolve them of the responsibility for the all too predictable outcome of that speech.

Stay toasty!

Open thread.

114 replies
  1. 1
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    Ben Shapiro (The Virgin Ben) is having a hell of a time explaining how his life’s work isn’t really involved in all this.

  2. 2
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: Shonda for the goyim!

  3. 3
    Patricia Kayden says:

    Truly a list of deplorables if there ever was one.

  4. 4
    Gin & Tonic says:

    I like the word “commentatrice.”

  5. 5
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Gin & Tonic: Everything sounds better in French.

  6. 6
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Adam L Silverman: This is true.

  7. 7
    Mary G says:

    Quite a Who’s Who of the people who got the president elected. Ben Shapiro responded on twitter; can’t remember exactly what, but it included “GFY”. And this is the guy they try to pass off as the new conservative intellectual since Paul Ryan blew his cover.

  8. 8
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Adam L Silverman: As a person with Frog-Canuck ancestry, I can say that she embarrasses and offends the fuck out of me. Whatever her influences.

  9. 9
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Who is she, so I know who exactly you’re referring to? Thanks!

  10. 10
    The Moar You Know says:

    Yeah, apologies will not be forthcoming, I am afraid.

    Church based across the street from me (in a public school, how the fuck is that OK?) is still having anti-gay visiting speakers on the down low. I guess it’s progress that it’s on the down low, but not much. The hate is still being spewed.

  11. 11
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    I liked “conseillère.” Made me realize that it probably shares a root Latin word with the more familiar Italian term.

  12. 12
    lollipopguild says:

    All of the people on the list are “special”, therefore they do not have to explain or apologize for what they say or do.

  13. 13
  14. 14
    Adam L Silverman says:

    One point: The Federalist refuses to reveal who funds it.

  15. 15
    Washburn says:

    Well, when you lay it out like that, it makes it seems like the other side’s position isn’t reasonable at all.

  16. 16
    Ruckus says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    If there were a list with the title Rich Conservative Assholes, their names would be at the top.

  17. 17
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Yutsano: Correct. Didn’t want to put it in the post as its basically a cliche at this point.

  18. 18
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Ruckus: Possibly.

  19. 19
    sukabi says:

    How the hell did Hannity stay off that list?

  20. 20
    Mary G says:

    I think Pruitt and Zinke must have some kind of bet going:

    Interior looked into spending $200,000 to fly personal flag for secretary https://t.co/e9h0A4tEra pic.twitter.com/nFSWF6WeDh— The Hill (@thehill) April 17, 2018

    He wanted bigger flags than the ones the current poles can manage, and four new flag poles would cost $50k each. He had the sense not to do it, but come on.

  21. 21
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Convert that to a he. I saw Alexendre as Alexandra. My bad.

  22. 22
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Mnemosyne:
    The mixing of English and French in that list seems very Canadian to me. It also reminds me of the Malaysian habit of mixing languages in conversation — Malay, English, Tamil, Cantonese, whatever.

  23. 23
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @sukabi: It’s not the full list. Just what the reporter tweeted. The full list is here:
    https://www.vice.com/en_ca/article/ywxeyg/here-are-the-far-right-conspiracists-the-quebec-city-mosque-shooter-followed?utm_campaign=sharebutton

    Another portion of the document shows that Bissonnette routinely checked the Twitter accounts of right-wing pundits, conspiracy theorists, and alt-right trolls. These include (but are not limited to) Ben Shapiro (whom he checked the most), Paul Joseph Watson and Alex Jones of Infowars, white nationalist Richard Spencer, alt-right troll Baked Alaska, conspiracy theorist Mike Cernovich, former KKK leader David Duke, the far-right YouTube pundit and alleged cult leader Stefan Molyneux, Kellyanne Conway, Fox News personality Tucker Carlson and then-Rebel Media personality Gavin McInnes. (McInnes was a co-founder of VICE. He and the company severed ties in 2008.)

    n addition to the repeated searches of Donald Trump and far-right social media personalities, Bissonnette searched for photos of the interior of the mosque he committed the shooting in. He also researched other men who committed mass murders including Marc Lépine, Dylann Roof, the Columbine shooters and Justin Bourque. Furthermore, he researched information about feminist and Muslim groups at Laval University, where he previously attended, and watched YouTube videos about the weapons he would use in the attack.

    “The same themes come up repeatedly (in Bissonnette’s computer): firearms, mass shootings, the question of Islam and feminism, and the mosque [where the attack occurred],” the Gazette reports prosecutor Thomas Jacques told the court.

    A unifying factor among the majority of these pundits, conspiracy theorists, and blowhards is relentless demonization of Islam and Muslim immigration.

    More at the link.

  24. 24
    Doug! says:

    Don’t forget that Robert Byrd was in the KKK too.

  25. 25
    Adam L Silverman says:

    Oh goodie!

  26. 26
    Doug! says:

    Disappointed Jordan Peterson isn’t on that list.

  27. 27
  28. 28
    Adam L Silverman says:

    Lest we forget this fine fellow!

    It is absolutely amazing that every SEAL publicly affiliated with the President’s campaign, who has accepted a political appointment, or who is working for organizations supporting the President seems to be a bigoted, racist, homophobe.

  29. 29
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷 says:

    When will Ben Shapiro’s rabbi make a statement about how Bissonnette’s actions are unacceptable and that the speech of his congregant, Shapiro, is also outside the acceptable bounds of Modern Orthodox Judaism? How about John Nolte’s, Tucker Carlson’s, Ann Coulter’s, Kellyanne Conway’s, Laura Ingraham’s, Bret Baier’s, Stefan Molyneux’s, John Sexton’s, James Allsup’s, Neil Turner’s, Stephen Bannon’s, Ben Domenech’s, or Robert O’Neill’s priests or ministers or pastors make a statement that Bissonnette’s actions are unacceptable and that the speech of their congregants listed above are outside the acceptable bounds of Roman Catholicism or whatever version of Protestantism these fine, Christian souls practice? When will Breitbart’s or The Federalist’s or Fox News’s or Breitbart’s or Hot Air’s publishers and funders denounce their employees speech and its consequences?

    When will they do this? Never. Because they believe it themselves and they applaud it. These are people who believe in winning at all costs. Doesn’t matter how. Doesn’t matter if the arguments are logically consistent. It’s win, baby win. Kill them all and let God sort them out. That’s what you’re dealing with. For authoritarians, there is no such thing as objective truth but what they declare to be truth, subject to change when convenient for the authoritarian.

    The only way to deal with people like this is to completely marginalize them.

  30. 30
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: I thought that might be the case, but figured I’d check.

  31. 31
    NotMax says:

    @Adam L. Silverman

    A confederacy of HINOS.

    (The “H” is for Human.)

  32. 32
    Amir Khalid says:

    right wing thought leaders

    I have to disagree. If you’re stoking people’s prejudices and tacitly encouraging them to violence, what you’re leading isn’t thought.

  33. 33
    NotMax says:

    @Amir Khalid

    “We incite, you decide.”

  34. 34
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Would certainly lead the disinterested outsider to make a deduction about SEALs in general.

  35. 35
    TS (the original) says:

    It’s never the fault of a GOPer – democrat followers – of course the democrats are to blame – but never does a republican admit to a problem with what they do and say. Rather like Hannity saying he doesn’t have to explain what his employees do – I seem to remember him calling out Hillary Clinton because of what a couple of her employees did.

    (Need a new nim – someone seems to have latched onto a minor variation of the old one – I know not who he/she is)

  36. 36
    Mike in NC says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Adam, I never in 30 years of commissioned service met a SEAL who wasn’t an asshole scumbag.

  37. 37
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @Mike in NC:

    A right-winger I used to work with wanted to be a SEAL.

  38. 38
    Parfigliano says:

    @Gin & Tonic: my thought too…why find this shocking

  39. 39
    Ruckus says:

    @Mike in NC:
    I have met one. I didn’t know him long enough to find out if he was an asshole or not. But if you’ve met multiples and they were all assholes, your assessment is probably the better one.

  40. 40
    Cheryl Rofer says:

    I’m pleased to say that New Mexico has ridded itself of Robert Mercer’s desire for the veneer of law enforcement on his concealed carry permit. He’s bribed the sheriff of Yuma County, Colorado, to cater to his fantasies.

  41. 41
    Cheryl Rofer says:

  42. 42
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Gin & Tonic: @Mike in NC: My boss is one. He’s good people. I think what drives the ones that tend to make themselves public figures, which is not usually the case in that community – they usually keep their heads down and their mouths shut, are the worst exemplars. I think there’s likely a correlation between the attention seeking and being scumbags.

  43. 43
    Adam L Silverman says:

    Is everyone enjoying Infrastructure Week?

  44. 44

    @Adam L Silverman: Wait, it’s Infrastructure Week? I thought that was last week.

  45. 45
    NotMax says:

    @Adam L. Silverman

    Tunnel vision for everyone!

    ;)

  46. 46
    lollipopguild says:

    @Adam L Silverman: There is a surprise in every box of infrastructure!

  47. 47
    Mary G says:

    Wired has an article up about a scholar’s study of Facebook election ads, “How Russian Facebook Ads Divided and Targeted US Voters Before the 2016 Election.”

    Of the 228 groups running divisive political ads, Kim classified 122 as suspicious. Then, in November of 2017, the House Intelligence Committee threw Kim a clue, releasing some of the Internet Research Agency ads Facebook had turned over. Kim ran the House’s list against her own, and found that one out of every six suspicious advertisers she had tracked was linked to the IRA.

    The aspect of her research that bothered Kim the most is that some of these groups could have been stopped—or at least discouraged—by stricter campaign finance laws. For instance, 25 percent of all the ads contained a message that mentioned Trump or Clinton by name. If those ads had appeared on television during that same time, they’d be considered “electioneering communications,” meaning they’d have to include a disclaimer about who paid for the ad and disclose to the FEC the source of their funding. Online, anything goes.

    “I think the biggest issue here are the loopholes,” Kim says. “There is no adequate law that addresses social media platforms.”

  48. 48
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    I would have thought that the selection process for commando units would weed out the attention seekers, since it’s not helpful to what such units do.

  49. 49
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Oy vey, this asshole!

    A Colorado gun-rights activist named Dudley Brown introduced Sheriff Day to Mercer’s foundation, according to the minutes of a February 2016 Yuma County Board of Commissioners meeting. Brown is the executive director of Rocky Mountain Gun Owners, which positions itself as a “no-compromise” alternative to the National Rifle Association. He declined to comment.

    Dudley Brown runs the National Association for Gun Rights (NAGR). NAGR sends multiple emails a day to people on its email lists requesting them send money to support the 2nd Amendment because Paul Ryan or Nancy Pelosi or whomever is trying to destroy it. They also have some sort of agreement with Rand Paul and Thomas Massie to share their email lists, which gets anyone signed up one or two NAGR emails a year from Paul and/or Massie and also emails from Paul and Massie’s own campaigns.

    Here’s an example:

    Dear Adam L,

    Things on Capitol Hill are taking a turn for the WORSE!

    Right now, multiple outlets are reporting that Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan is sneaking Feinstein-backed GUN CONTROL on to a trillion dollar “must pass” omnibus spending bill.

    According to The Hill, Paul Ryan isn’t even ashamed to be pushing this grand betrayal on gun owners.

    Check out what Ryan’s saying in his own words:
    “I think we should do Fix NICS. I agree with Fix NICS.” Ryan added, “that’s something we’re discussing with our friends on the other side of the aisle.”
    — The Hill (3/20/2018)

    Of course, his “friends” include none other than Senator Dianne “turn ’em in” Feinstein (D-CA) and Obama’s favorite gun control minion Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT).

    Both of whom are co-sponsors of this Brady-NICS gun control database scheme in the Senate.

    If Ryan, Feinstein, and Murphy have their way, this rights-stripping bill will be on President Trump’s desk by weeks end.

    So if we’re going to stop the gun grabbers dead in their tracks, we must turn up the heat!

    Please take a moment to call your lawmakers:

    *** Sen. Marco Rubio can be reached at (202) 224-3041

    *** Sen. Bill Nelson can be reached at (202) 224-5274

    *** Rep. Gus Bilirakis can be reached at (202) 225-5755

    Demand they VOTE AGAINST any spending bill that includes Feinstein-backed Brady-NICS gun control schemes.

    When you’re done, SIGN YOUR EMERGENCY “NO SNEAK ATTACK” FAX PETITION here.

    Speaker Ryan intends to put this gun control “deal” on President Trump’s desk this week.

    Believe me, I wish we could count on the Senate to stop it, but Texas Senator John Cornyn (R) has made expanding the unconstitutional Brady-NICS database a personal vendetta this year.

    And I also wish we could count on a veto, but sadly the White House indicated today that he might sign it.

    White House legislative affairs director Marc Short told Politico on Tuesday:
    “We remain hopeful that Fix NICS is in the [bill].”

    That means it all comes down to you, Adam L.

    Your activism has stalled gun control for months in Washington, DC. You have beaten them at every turn. You have defeated every trick, and we simply cannot sit back and relax now!

    The good news is there is no guarantee this bill has the votes to pass either the House or the Senate.

    It could be very close, VERY close.

    But with so many other media-pleasing pieces of pork loaded into this omnibus spending bill alongside gun control, it is extremely controversial.

    And we just need a little more pressure to send them back to the drawing board.

    That’s why I’m counting on you.

    Even if you’ve already signed and called, please do it again!

    *** Sen. Marco Rubio can be reached at (202) 224-3041

    *** Sen. Bill Nelson can be reached at (202) 224-5274

    *** Rep. Gus Bilirakis can be reached at (202) 225-5755

    Demand they VOTE AGAINST any spending bill that includes Feinstein-backed Brady-NICS gun control schemes.

    When you’re done, SIGN YOUR EMERGENCY “NO SNEAK ATTACK” FAX PETITION here.

    As a reminder, the so-called “FIX-NICS” gun control bill they’re trying to jam into this bill is downright frightening.

    Not only is it backed by Dianne “turn ’em in” Feinstein, it would EXPAND the Brady-NICS gun control scheme and:
    *** FORCE federal agencies and states to expand their record keeping — steadily building the largest gun control database in U.S. history.

    *** PUNISH states for not handing over tens of thousands of private records of hundreds of thousands of gun owners to Big Brother in Washington, D.C.

    *** REWARD states with tens of millions of dollars for turning over their residents’ records to gun control elites occupying federal agencies, and eagerly building the Brady-NICS Super Database.

    *** UN-REPEAL the Obama-era Social Security Gun Ban and expand the “Veterans Gun Ban” in to other departments and agencies.

    Bottom line, if this bill passes hundreds of thousands or MILLIONS more law-abiding Americans will lose their Second Amendment rights — ALL WITHOUT TRIAL OR DUE PROCESS.

    *** Sen. Marco Rubio can be reached at (202) 224-3041

    *** Sen. Bill Nelson can be reached at (202) 224-5274

    *** Rep. Gus Bilirakis can be reached at (202) 225-5755

    Demand they VOTE AGAINST any spending bill that includes Feinstein-backed Brady-NICS gun control schemes.

    When you’re done, SIGN YOUR EMERGENCY “NO SNEAK ATTACK” FAX PETITION here.

    Once you have signed your petition, please click here to forward this email to all your pro-gun friends and family.

    After you’ve done that, please consider making a generous contribution to NAGR.

    Whether you give $30 or $20, or even just $5 or $10, it will be greatly appreciated and go a long way towards defending our rights.

    Thank you for your continued support.

    For Freedom,

    Dudley Brown
    President
    National Association for Gun Rights

    P.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan just snuck Feinstein-backed gun control into a massive spending bill.

    The gun grabbers are desperate to pull off any tricks to ram anti-gun legislation down our throats.

    That’s why it’s imperative that you call your lawmakers:

    *** Sen. Marco Rubio can be reached at (202) 224-3041

    *** Sen. Bill Nelson can be reached at (202) 224-5274

    *** Rep. Gus Bilirakis can be reached at (202) 225-5755

    Urge them to VOTE AGAINST any spending bill that includes Feinstein-backed Brady-NICS gun control schemes.

    After you’ve made your calls, please sign your EMERGENCY “NO SNEAK ATTACK FAX PETITION” putting yourself squarely opposed to all gun control.

    Finally, please consider chipping in $10 or $20 to help defeat every gun control proposal that rears its ugly head in Congress.

    Florida Gun Rights is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, single-purpose citizens’ organization dedicated to preserving and protecting the Constitutionally protected right-to-keep-and-bear-arms through an aggressive program designed to mobilize public opposition to anti-gun legislation. Florida Gun Rights’ mailing address is 2910 Kerry Forest Pkwy D-4 Suite 361 Tallahassee, FL 32309. They can be contacted toll-free at 1-850-391-2443. Its web address is http://www.FloridaGunRights.org

    Not produced or e-mailed at taxpayer expense.

    To help Florida Gun Rights grow, please forward this to a friend.

    To view this email as a web page, please click this link: view online.

  50. 50
    NotMax says:

    @BillinGlendaleCA

    That was Infrastructure. week. This is Infrastructure Week.

    It’s like Zathras, only there are more of them.

    :)

  51. 51
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: Every week is infrastructure week!

  52. 52
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Amir Khalid: It is supposed to be indoctrinated out. One of the post 9-11 problems, however, has been an influx of bubbas that want to hunt and kill terrorists. For the SEALs this isn’t necessarily an issue as hunter/killer operations are part of their mission set. It has been more of an issue for the Green Berets, whose primary mission set is unconventional warfare. My take, as an informed observer, is some of what drives some of the bubbas that want to do the hunter/killer missions is also a drive for notoriety.

  53. 53
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @NotMax:

    Zathras is crisis management expert!

  54. 54
    Amir Khalid says:

    @NotMax:
    @Adam L Silverman:
    When every week is infrastructure week, no week is Infrastructure Week.

  55. 55
    sukabi says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    Some of my volunteer resources are directly involved in confidential undercover operations that involve direct ties and associations with the Mexican Cartel which has a presence in my area,” Day wrote in an earlier email. “It would not be safe tactically or personally to identify individuals who serve in association with those types of cases.”

    Lees, the lawyer, wouldn’t say if Mercer or his associates have been infiltrating cartels. “What they do is entirely confidential,” Lees said. “I’m neither confirming nor denying that they serve in those roles.”

    Are we sure the Mercers aren’t involved with drug trafficking?

  56. 56
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    I have a comment in moderation. Gee, what’d I do?
    ETA: And I get sprung almost right away. Thanks, Adam.

  57. 57
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Amir Khalid: I freed it.

    WP appears to be randomly wonky tonight. Its eaten some other regular commenter’s comments. As in not in spam or in trash, just gone. I have no idea what the issue is, but when I speak with Alain in the AM, I’ll ask him to poke around.

  58. 58
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @NotMax: “No one listens to Zathras.”

  59. 59
    NotMax says:

    @Adam L. Silverman

    Probably my favorite bit of Zathras dialogue.

  60. 60
    danielx says:

    Tax preparation sucks….but it’s done and filed. Oh frabjous day!

    Actually, I sort of like this infrastructure week so far. Perhaps it will emerge that Cohen was covering up potential charges of bestiality against Hannity. One can always hope.

  61. 61
  62. 62
    Fair Economist says:

    @sukabi:

    Are we sure the Mercers aren’t involved with drug trafficking?

    The Mercers are active in medicine, so what with the opiate lobby, we know they *are* involved with drug trafficking.

  63. 63
    NotMax says:

    @Adam L. Silverman

    That’s the same clip I linked to above in #50.

  64. 64
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @NotMax: This is what I get when I click on your link in #50:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BtMP2EiRH0Y&feature=youtu.be&t=4

  65. 65
    Yarrow says:

    @Amir Khalid: We are all Infrastructure Week now.

  66. 66
    NotMax says:

    @Adam L.Silverman

    Now that’s weird – I just clicked again on the link in #50 to check and it went to the correct place.

  67. 67
    NotMax says:

    @Adam L. Silverman

    That’s the link in #59 above, not the one in #50.

    Or else the time/space continuum is out of service.

  68. 68

    @Adam L Silverman: jeez, it’s almost like this was a completely predictable consequence of putting billions of non-secure machines online.

  69. 69
    Ruckus says:

    @danielx:
    Not to be too much of an ass about it but I got my almost nothing CA refund about 8 weeks ago.My fed refund was $7.00. Yes you read it right seven whole dollars, I just put it towards my next yrs refund so that might make double figures. But then my taxes are rather easy, it took me less than an hour to do both fed and CA and that included printing out copies. CA is done online so just a copy for me, fed has to be mailed in of course. Taxes are not all that difficult if you own nothing, have no investments, no 401/ira or retirement whatevers and one W2.
    I call it old geezer success, I made it this far and have nothing to show for it.

  70. 70

    @Adam L Silverman: Thanks, now I understand Infrastructure Week.

  71. 71
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @NotMax: Sorry, my bad. I didn’t notice the link in 50 at all. Long day. Something I ate is disagreeing with me. Getting ready to rack out.

  72. 72
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Major Major Major Major: Who could’ve known?

  73. 73

    @Adam L Silverman: next you’ll be telling me that voting machines with no paper trail are vulnerable to tampering.

  74. 74
    danielx says:

    @Ruckus:

    I’m getting money back, but it was because I overestimated what I/we needed to pay by a long shot. Look on the bright side – you didn’t make an interest-free loan to the Feds, which they’ll get around to paying back. Eventually.

  75. 75
    Ruckus says:

    @Major Major Major Major:
    Noooo, tell me you are kidding……

  76. 76
    danielx says:

    @Major Major Major Major:

    Who knew? And besides, it’s complicated and difficult providing a paper trail, just ask Diebold.

    Oh wait, they do that with thousands of ATMS every day. My bad.

  77. 77
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Major Major Major Major: Is a puzzlement!

  78. 78

    @Adam L Silverman: at least we aren’t carrying GPS-enabled cameras and microphones everywhere!

  79. 79
    Ruckus says:

    @danielx:
    Well in some ways I did make a loan to the feds. Not a monetary one out of my paycheck but I pay fed taxes on my SS income and the wonderful conservative assholes that are currently running the place into the ground are surly going to at least attempt to fuck up my SS retirement money and the assholes are trying to privatize the VA. It’s already started with a program called Choice. Some services are outsourced if a particular clinic doesn’t have that service and vets are calling the VA for appointments to those outside services and of course that’s not how it works so they get mad at the VA. So they won’t oppose those assholes privatizing it until it’s too late. So yeah my taxes are easy, and my life just keeps on getting better.

  80. 80
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Major Major Major Major: That’s just crazy talk!

  81. 81
    NotMax says:

    @danielx

    Have been leery of ATMs since the time one (at a bank, no less) shortchanged me – by A LOT. The receipt matched the amount I had requested be spit out, an amount higher than what I received. And the higher amount was deducted from my account. Took nearly 3 weeks to get that straightened out.

  82. 82
    Jacel says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: Every Infrastructure Week is dedicated to the task of building the next Infrastructure Week.

  83. 83
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @Major Major Major Major:
    Some say funny shenanigans happened in Ohio in ’04. Who knows? ;)

  84. 84

    @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷: the thing is that voting machines are by and large vulnerable at the level of individual machines, so anything of consequence happening in 2004 via that mechanism is fairly unlikely.

  85. 85
    sukabi says:

    @Fair Economist: the NM article that Cheryl linked to is just strange. What possible legitimate reason could Mercer have playing reserve ‘cop’ interacting with the Mexican cartels?

  86. 86
    kattails says:

    Dear Adam, So I wandered off to do some online research and drawings for a project, come back a couple of hours later, and you’re telling us to “stay toasty” for a change. Which given the inch of sleet/snow/freezing whatever we got today is much more appealing than “frosty”.

    Also, what you said about the other stuff, too. Although I might quibble with the term “spiritual leaders” given the context. Substitute charlatan, fraud, grifter for leader and stop expecting anything out of them; but you of course know this. It’s a rhetorical question. Still makes me want to grab them by the shirt front and pin them against a wall to ask the question.

  87. 87
    danielx says:

    @Ruckus:

    I hear you. I didn’t mean to belittle your difficulties with the whole deal.

  88. 88
    NotMax says:

    @Major Major Major Major

    Although as the software with which they’re loaded is proprietary and exempt from inspection by agreement (stupidly) signed by the governmental election authorities, one can never entirely erase suspicion.

    Doesn’t necessarily even have to be a case of insidious or planned tampering with the tally, could be a case of plain sketchy programming.

  89. 89
    Ruckus says:

    @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷:
    I lived/voted in OH in 2004. We had 2 machines for several precincts, I lived in a somewhat blue area and the previous 2 votes at the same location and precincts we had far more machines. They didn’t need to fuck with the results, they got low turn out as people had to go to work and didn’t hang around. I waited in the rain for 4 hrs and I got to the polling place when it opened. I got to work in time to go to lunch. It was obvious to me that they fucked with us because of our area. People I knew in less blue areas had plenty of machines and no waiting.

  90. 90
    NotMax says:

    @sukabi

    My understanding is that it was because the badge gave him carte blanche to concealed carry weapons across state lines without having to apply for permits

  91. 91
    tamiasmin says:

    Is the most inflammatory speech really protected? Will I face no ill consequences if I urge people to harm a person or a group of people whom I dislike, perhaps even inciting them to homicide? I hope that is not the case.

    At the usual risk of being told that I am a nerdish, elitist grammar nazi, I present this strange succession of words: “Those protections does NOT let absolve them of the responsibility for the all to predictable outcome of that speech.” I am not sure what it is supposed to be, but it certainly is not an English sentence.

  92. 92
    danielx says:

    @Major Major Major Major:

    It’s odd that you mention that; it’s something that I’ve given some thought every so often. If someone had told the collective us forty-fifty years ago that we had to carry around devices that would allow the government and/or various bad actors access to our most private information*…there would have been riots in the streets. Now we do it voluntarily because of the convenience said devices offer. It is taken as normal that you cannot do without a cell phone, and in some ways that is true. You are out in the boonies somewhere and get hurt somehow, you gotta call somebody unless you want to die. Sooner or later some prosecutor somewhere is going to prosecute someone on the basis that they didn’t have a cell phone record proving they were elsewhere when a crime was committed at a particular location….

    Could be I’m a cynical pessimist, but every day that goes by shows me otherwise.

    *ETA: depending on the individual and how much interest bad people have in that individual. I don’t differentiate between government and freelance in this area, only in the consequences each can involve.

  93. 93
    Ruckus says:

    @danielx:
    You weren’t belittling me at all. I was just venting a bit about the fun turns my life is taking due to conservative assholes. I’ve said on here before that I lost everything in the last recession and that everything was my retirement concept. I’m not alone in that loss either. If enough people figure out that they are getting shit on because of this massive tax fuck job that conservatives just pulled off and learn it early enough I’m hoping that this will mean that the republican party has fucked itself royally. Because that’s the only way they are going to be banished to the life of extremely rotten fruit and bags of flaming dog shit that they deserve.

  94. 94
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @Major Major Major Major:
    I know nothing about voting machines. I was only joking

  95. 95
    sukabi says:

    @NotMax: I get that part of it. According to the article that part of the deal got pulled, Mercer donated a bunch more equipment to the sheriff dept. And got his concealed carry privileges back….but the article had the sheriff saying they went undercover with the cartels…and then wouldn’t confirm or deny yada, yada, yada…just weird.

    Don’t think the sheriff knows exactly what’s going on under his nose.

  96. 96
    Amir Khalid says:

    @tamiasmin:
    Here, let me copy-edit that for yuh:

    “Those protections does NOT let absolve them of the responsibility for the alltoo-predictable outcome of that speech.”

  97. 97
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @Ruckus:
    In my area, we fill in bubbles on paper forms now and insert them into a computer/machine that tallies and records the votes. I don’t know if this is different from the voting machines or not. I remember back in elementary ( probably in 2004) we got to use one to vote for something for our school. I remember being so excited to use one. Little did I realise how they could be used to fuck with an election, like you described.

  98. 98
    danielx says:

    @Ruckus:

    O yes…..my professional career, such as it was, got blown up in 2009. The spousal unit and I were able to hang onto our house because she made enough bucks to keep us going, unlike a lot of people. I was able to do some work and bring in some bucks, again unlike a lot of people. But I’m still pissed that the people who did the best out of fucking everybody else are still enjoying their ill-gotten gains. Guilty as hell and free as a bird.

  99. 99
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @sukabi:
    Related:

    I thought it was stupid of Mercer to reveal that he goes out on his own to the middle of nowhere to play pretend deputy sheriff in some bizarre Western fantasy. The man has to have enemies that would be willing have him killed; just make it look like the cartels or something ambushed him.

  100. 100
    Amir Khalid says:

    @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷:
    What’s the point of doing a thing, if you don’t get to brag about it?

  101. 101
    Ruckus says:

    @danielx:
    Closed my second business in 2012 after the recession and my bank account completely flew the coop and found a job a year later, still have it today. But I’m not working till I drop. Fuck that, 58 yrs of working is more than enough so 2 more years and I’m done. Someone else can pick up the slack. And actually it will be more than 58 years then if you count paper boy.

  102. 102
    J R in WV says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    One question… if the Federalist refuses to say who funds the operation, do they still get a federal USPS mailing label? That lets then send their rag to people in return fpr a few cents per issue per copy mailed?

    @Ruckus:

    I retired at 58 Y O after working since I was 14, with a few years off the clock building the farm, making the house livable, the barn able to hold some critters and hay and feed. Then college on the GI Bill, mostly. I let my parents buy the books needed, which was more than I would have thought, even in the 1980-86 era when I went.

    So 40 odd years of paid labor. I was doing pretty well by retirement, running a software shop for the state DEP… nothing like what I would have earned doing the job for silicon valley, but way good for a boy from coal country, more than a coal miner, without going underground every day. In WV you have vested your retirement when your age and your years of work total 80. You get to count military service, so many of my coworkers who served 20 or 25 years in the Army hit many years of service by the time they were 55 or 60. I hit it on my birthday in 2008.

    I will confess that I never heard of Alaxandre Bissonnette, sounds like she did something vile for reasons of religious hatred. So I won’t care for her motivations or her personal belief system. Nazi wannabee.

  103. 103

    @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷: it’s a popular… ‘conspiracy theory’ is going too far, but… yeah.

  104. 104
    Morfydd says:

    @J R in WV: He (French spelling of Alexander) shot up a mosque in Quebec shortly after Trump’s election? Inauguration?

  105. 105
    Ksmiami says:

    @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷: or remove their right to be in the public sphere at all. Actually most speech is protected except for incitement to violence

  106. 106
    nonynony says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    One point: The Federalist refuses to reveal who funds it.

    In this absurdist novel we live in, it’s going to turn out that the Russians have been funding the Federalist all along, isn’t it?

  107. 107
    Ramalama says:

    I used to find it unbelievable when people had to start saying things like, “I am opposed to genocide” whenever talking about genocide because if you didn’t, you could easily be accused of being in favor of genocide.

    Genocide is one of hundreds of examples now.

    It didn’t use to be like this.

  108. 108
    Tarragon says:

    @NotMax:
    Wow, nice!

  109. 109
    The Moar You Know says:

    Russian cyber campaign may tap into millions of devices https://t.co/j44q6iqULo

    @Adam L Silverman: This is my field of expertise. And I hate to say, but this is an own goal, we did this to ourselves.

    When your outsource the manufacture and maintenance of your infrastructure to people who have every interest in seeing you fail, you’re going to have problems.

    The lack of security on these devices is not an accident, and the Russians who have penetrated/pwned them don’t even know half of the vulnerabilities that are there. They just grabbed the easy ones, the ones in the firmware.

  110. 110
    tamiasmin says:

    @Amir Khalid: A fair beginning, though I’m not sure the hyphens are needed. Then replace ”does” with ”do” and insert ”us” between ”let” and ”absolve” and you’re done. English!

  111. 111
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: oh, goodie. you mean he is our states problem now??

  112. 112
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @tamiasmin: Thank you for catching that. I appreciate it.

    How about next time you be less of an ass when pointing it out?

  113. 113
    tamiasmin says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    “How about next time you be less of an ass when pointing it out?”

    Thanks, Adam. I’ll add ”ass” to the other insults from people who think their readers ought to be grateful for a chance to figure out what they meant to write.

    And it’s ”too.”

  114. 114
    tamiasmin says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    Let me try again, Adam. You are a knowledgeable and engaging writer whose information and opinions many readers rely upon, I among them. But you harm your credibility when you fail to read over a short post to catch and correct obvious errors. Readers may fairly wonder whether a writer who is unconcerned about the easy stuff is also careless about his main theme. I liken it to serving nutritious food on soiled dishes; it spoils the whole experience. It only takes two minutes to finish the job and get it right.

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