Friday Morning Open Thread: Good Stuff to Ponder, Before the News Dump

I would also like my life to get back to its version of normal, so that I could keep a posting schedule that would please all y’all. Unfortunately, part of the recent discombobulation involves the fact that I can only garden during daylight hours, something that’s not gonna change in the immediate future…

Fun facts to share! (Charlie Kirk is the TP-USA grifter) —

Meanwhile, Maggie Haberman goes full-metal gossip columnist…

165 replies
  1. 1
    la caterina says:

    Anybody here? Rikyrah? Good morning if you are.

  2. 2
    satby says:

    @la caterina: they’re coming up from downstairs. Good morning.

  3. 3
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    No sleep at all last night. Charlie horse after charlie horse after charlie horse. Maybe I’ll try and take a nap today.

  4. 4
  5. 5
    Immanentize says:

    Hi All,

    Anne Laurie — I love your posts, but you should garden when you want to, BJ be damned.

  6. 6
    satby says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: take that nap!
    My friend just cancelled our lunch because she was up all night with a migraine, just before I was going to text her to cancel because my big old boy seems to be in bad shape, though he’s sleeping reasonably comfortably right now.
    The day isn’t off to an auspicious start.

  7. 7
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    Tennessee tax dollars at work: A possible 12 year prison sentence for stealing $39.57. Thank you Walmart.

  8. 8
    Jeffro says:

    Good morning everyone.

    Stupid Caps…well, now I can skip Game 5 entirely…

  9. 9
    Immanentize says:

    Ugh. I get those after a day of new style strenuous work. I suspect, after your previous sheet rock comment that is not your reason. Multivitamins — or even vitamin water — helps me some when that happens….
    But in any case, I think I’ll take a nap too.

  10. 10
    Amir Khalid says:

    I hope Schiff’s bill specifies that every penny the Trump Org makes off the US Government is to be deducted from Trump’s presidential paycheque. If, as he claims, he doesn’t cash them (which I doubt) he won’t feel it.

  11. 11
    Ramalama says:

    I wish Nancy Pelosi had the authority to take Democratic Senators to the woodshed. Six Democrats—Indiana Sen. Joe Donnelly, North Dakota Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, Florida Sen. Bill Nelson, New Hampshire Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, and Virginia Sen. Mark Warner voted for Gina Haspel.

    Does no one ever travel overseas? Americans supporting, implementing, not doing shit about torture is going to bite us all in the arse.

  12. 12
    Immanentize says:

    @Jeffro: yeah, but, how about those Celtics??

  13. 13
    Baud says:

    @Amir Khalid: You can’t constitutionally alter the current president’s salary.

  14. 14
    Jeffro says:

    @Immanentize: yeah, there’s that…

    Ah well. Off to try and swim a few laps.

  15. 15
    Baud says:


    , BJ be damned.

    That happened a long time ago.

  16. 16
    Baud says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    Did you see this?

    What Democracies Can Learn From Malaysia
    Sometimes the real promise of the system is simply the power to remove leaders.

  17. 17
    rikyrah says:

    Good Morning Everyone 😄😄😄

  18. 18
    Baud says:

    Good morning to upthreaders and to rikyrah, wherever you are.

    ETA:. There you are.

  19. 19
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    Julian Assange is suffering needlessly. Why not report that?
    Melinda Taylor

    The media’s coverage of Assange’s arbitrary detention has been shocking, favouring the powerful over the voiceless

    • Melinda Taylor is a lawyer representing Julian Assange

    BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA… No I didn’t read it, but I thought y’all might enjoy a morning guffaw too.

  20. 20
    satby says:

    @rikyrah: Good morning rikyrah!

  21. 21
    satby says:

    @Baud: and good morning to you too Baud.

  22. 22
    Baud says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: It’s his lawyer. Probably recommended to him by Michael Cohen.

  23. 23
    rikyrah says:

    Ok,. that was a good laugh 😄

  24. 24
    Kay says:


    Therefore his return fraud was a burglary – a felony punishable by up to 12 years of prison.

    OMG. I wonder if one could run against the Wal Mart prosecutors by showing people how much this game they’re playing is costing the county. Felony prosecutions are more expensive than misdemeanor cases and so are 12 year prison sentences.

  25. 25
    Anne Laurie says:

    @Immanentize: Thanks — although I don’t really wanna garden, I want to have gardened. (Translation: I’m putting off going to bed — but not for much longer! — because I’m not looking forward to hoisting many bags of dirt to fill more rootpouches to transplant the mail-order tomato seedlings into.)

    What I’d really like is for a positive solution to our elderly dog Zevon’s current not-eating problem, so I don’t spend so much time either standing around talking to veterinarians or trying to calm down the Spousal Unit, who’s convinced that worrying REALLY HARD will somehow improve Zevon’s appetite…

  26. 26
  27. 27
    satby says:

    @Anne Laurie: best wishes to Zevon. Have they tried prednisone yet? Or do you think he’s telling you it’s time?

  28. 28
    Baud says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: That’s a bullshit burglary charge. But I do think it’s misleading to talk about what sentence a criminal “could get.” Oftentimes, the range is fairly broad simply because it covers a lot of different types of conduct.

  29. 29
    Lounger says:

    It’s so refreshing how words like “disappointing” and “misguided” — which are usually the harshest condemnations most Democratic pols can muster — are absent from Nancy Pelosi’s twitter feed. It’s criminal how undervalued she is.

  30. 30
    Baud says:

    @Lounger: So you’re saying she shouldn’t resign? That’s a pretty radical view.

  31. 31
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Baud: It’s a felony charge for stealing $39.57. Whatever he gets (3-4 years would be my bet) is going to cost the state a hell of a lot more than that. Not to mention as Kay does above, just the costs of the prosecution are way over the cost of the crime. This is Walmart once again foisting the costs of their business model onto the taxpayer.

  32. 32
    Montanareddog says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I will try to get round to reading the comments if not the article itself. Could be entertaining.

    ETA: not entertaining at all. Comments are disabled on this article. Damn!

  33. 33
    Cermet says:

    @Baud: Yet crimes related to property have extremely harsh penalties compared to most other crimes. Rather, crimes like stealing should be related to the value stolen – we see millions stolen by bankers and they pay a fine but no to little/meaningless country club jail time; however, a poor person is threaten with 12 years for a few dollars? Rather, low value, non-violent crime should never exceed 6 months and the definition of felony should be for stealing of, say, over $10,000. The whole system is geared to severely punish the poor and just lightly tap the hand of the wealthy who steal vast sums all the time.

  34. 34
    Kay says:


    But taking it from a misdemeanor to a felony puts it in a category where it will BE overpunished. Even if it’s one year- one year in prison is too harsh a sentence for that. It’s now within the whole felony scheme, including all the lengthy post release control aspects. One Wal Mart return fraud prosecution, start to finish, including incarceration and post-release control could cost 100,000 dollars even if it’s on the low end of sentences. The one that was appealed in the story, where the state lost, cost much much more than that. It’s in the wrong category, and Wal Mart put it there.

  35. 35
    Montanareddog says:


    …I was going to text her to cancel because my big old boy seems to be in bad shape, though he’s sleeping reasonably comfortably right now.

    if you were a man, there would be a lot of snickering going on right now.

  36. 36
    A Ghost To Most says:

    Rudy is spewing about Rump on CNN right now.

  37. 37
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    And this to put a genuine happy smile on your face:

    Ben Bender decided to go out on top. The 93-year-old from Ohio had been playing golf for 65 years when he hit his first-ever hole-in-one last month and promptly announced he had played his final ever round.

    Bender took up golf at the age of 28 but had never aced a hole until his last round. “I’d come close to some hole-in-ones, but this one was level on the green before it curved towards the hole and went in,” Bender told the Zanesville Times Recorder. “I was in awe watching it. I played a few more holes, but my hips were hurting and I had to stop. It seemed the Lord knew this was my last round so he gave me a hole-in-one.”

  38. 38
    Manyakitty says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: @Immanentize: magnesium and lots of water

  39. 39
    sherparick says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Well, he can walk out any time he wants and turn himself over to those terrible barbarians, the Swedes. But I don’t think old Julian likes to be held accountable for his abuse of women.

  40. 40
    Kay says:


    And they won’t actually give him that sentence because they know it’s a bullshit charge. So instead they’ll put him on paper for some ridiculous length of time, a length of time that will be determined by whether it’s in the felony or misdemeanor category which he will violate in some fashion, almost inevitably, and then starts the cycle of going in and out of prison for a decade for probation violations on the original bullshit charge. Because once the big machines fires up it doesn’t stop until it’s completed the circle around the track.

  41. 41
    JPL says:

    @A Ghost To Most: I can’t follow his reasoning at all.

  42. 42
    Lapassionara says:

    @Amir Khalid: For some reason, I think Trump is “donating” his salary to the federal government. Last month it went to the VA, per report. This is part of the con, as it impresses his base, while his companies can extort millions from elsewhere.

    Anyone else seen this?

    Good morning, everyone.

  43. 43
    Mr.Mack says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Best medical advice I ever got was to eat raisins to prevent cramping of muscles…what you call a charlie horse. Apparently, it’s the potassium, and raisins contain more than bananas. Good luck.

  44. 44
    JPL says:

    @A Ghost To Most: Rudy is a rambling man.

  45. 45
    satby says:

    @Montanareddog: yeah, I left myself wide open for that.
    In an earlier thread I mentioned my oldest male dog, Hershey, isn’t well and I’m waiting for the vet office to open.

  46. 46
    Ceci n est pas mon nym says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Thanks, that did put a smile on my face. It’s not the same thing but for some reason it made me think about people’s life stories and how you sometimes find out when they die that they were a whole lot more than who you knew. Father of a friend, nice gentle old guy living with her his last days, turned out (according to friends’ reminiscences in the local paper) to be quite the pool champion and shark. Nice old lady I sat next to and sang with in choir turned out to be a nationally-known gay rights activist, one of the founders of the gay rights movement.

  47. 47
    geg6 says:


    I get terrible foot cramps. And I eat a LOT of raisins (I have Raisin Bran every morning at work). Bananas work on my cramps, though. My doctor tells me I don’t process potassium very well for some reason. No idea why. I also drink a lot of OJ for the same reason. Just a weird thing with my body.

  48. 48
    OzarkHillbilly says:


    Because once the big machines fires up it doesn’t stop until it’s completed the circle around the track.

    Several times. People who have never been caught up in it have no idea how psychologically damaging the big machine is, that every day is a fight just to breath, that relaxing for even a moment is risky, that minding one’s Ps and Qs is matter of survival. And now with the privatization of P&P in addition to prisons, there is a profit incentive to find the most minor infractions of conditions of release so as to maximize the time one spends on probation.

  49. 49
    Ceci n est pas mon nym says:

    @JPL: Not listening, but I don’t think Rudy has what you’d call a “reasoning process” beyond “let’s spout words that will put Rudy Giuliani in the headlines. Win!”

  50. 50
    Anne Laurie says:


    Have they tried prednisone yet? Or do you think he’s telling you it’s time?

    We’re waiting on the liver-function blood tests. He’s on maintenance Metacam, for his achy joints, and his teeth are in terrible shape, but it’s always scary to put a 16-1/2-year-old dog under anesthesia. He went through a round of antibiotics recently for an abcess, and he was eating better while he was on them, so I’m hoping if he’s not well enough for surgery, he’s at least strong enough to go on maintance antibiotics for his teeth. As we both know too well, getting old ain’t for sissies!

    If the bloodwork isn’t conclusive (or, given the Spousal Unit, even if it seems to be), next step is an ultrasound. I keep telling myself it’s a blessing we can afford to spend so much money on a mere dog (& a elderly rescue at that!) but that’s like the very *definition* of mixed blessings…

    (Dammit, now I go to bed. P.S. Happy birthday & holding Hershey, as well as you, in my prayers.)

  51. 51
    Kay says:

    Rudy Giuliani said Friday that special counsel Robert Mueller has agreed to narrow the scope of a potential interview with President Donald Trump from five topics to two.
    The former New York City mayor told CNN’s Chris Cuomo on “New Day” that Mueller is not considering asking the President about his former personal attorney Michael Cohen, who’s under investigation in New York over his business dealings.
    Giuliani said he can’t go into much more detail, but that “the main focus we want is Russia.”
    CNN reported in March that the areas that Mueller’s team indicated it wanted to pursue with Trump included his role in crafting a statement aboard Air Force One that miscast Donald Trump Jr.’s June 2016 meeting with Russians in Trump Tower, the circumstances surrounding that Trump Tower meeting, as well as the firings of former FBI Director James Comey and national security adviser Michael Flynn.

    I love how the subtext of all this coverage is that Trump and his associates break the law constantly, but as long as it is not in the context of “Russia collusion”, specifically, no one will investigate it or prosecute.

    The NYTimes actually went so far as to invent a “red line” and suggest to Trump that prosecutors could not cross it. It’s not true- Trump’s sleazy business deals and family are certainly still covered by US criminal statutes – but they wanted to set a narrative where anything less than a specific collusion prosecutor was deemed a “nothingburger”.

  52. 52
    Kay says:


    I used to think “well, they can turn it around, they can get back out of it and have a normal life” but now half the time I listen to this elaborate booby-trapped maze they;re in and I think “you should give up. It’s not likely you’ll succeed”. I wouldn’t succeed. No one would. It’s designed so 99% of them fail. It is really hard to get out of it once you’re in. They make such a big deal about the success stories because they’re so rare, and they will remain rare.

  53. 53
    satby says:

    @Anne Laurie: thank you. The coffee is hard to choke down this morning.

    I have to find a different vet that can squeeze him in, my usual one can’t. Edit, at least he’s resting now, I gave him an aspirin and it seems to have taken the edge off.

  54. 54
    sherparick says:

    In a Congress and Government full of terrible people, Congressman Steve King of Iowa may be the worse. Besides being a racist, open white supremacist, a anti-immigration demagogue, and all round creep, he is also an advocate for animal cruelty in the name of profit. This is his bill.

  55. 55
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Manyakitty: @Mr.Mack: @geg6: I have heard all the cures and more than a few “cures”. I take magnesium. I eat bananas. I drink water at every opportunity. I still get horrendous cramping, but not as bad as they would be if I didn’t do the above. I have been this way all my life. Some days are worse than others. Been to the Docs- “Shrug. Sucks to be you.” And now that I am now on blood thinners I get deep muscle bruising with them too.

    I’m not looking for a magic bullet, there isn’t one. I just want to whine.

  56. 56
    El Caganer says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Have you tried magnesium supplements? I had constant leg cramps at night until my sister recommended magnesium. Haven’t had a problem since.

  57. 57
    charluckles says:

    @Anne Laurie:

    When my Mina was in the worst of her radiation and chemotherapy we would station a yummy dinner for her under our dining room table. Then we would all sit down at the table and start our dinner with loud chewing, smacking and exclamations about deliciousness.
    I am sure we looked like nutters, but between eating with her pack and triggering her we were fairly successful. I have had a lot of great dogs in my life, but she is the one I still think about every day. Maybe because we worked so hard to give her more time. Good luck.

  58. 58
  59. 59
    Elizabelle says:


    All the best to you and Hershey. Happy birthday!

    In the event it is Hershey’s time, he will always be associated with your birthday, and on later ones, you will be happy to think of his sweet self.

    Also sending satby birthday good vibe to Zevon. Be well, little yapper.

  60. 60
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kay: A lot of people find it hard to believe that someone would prefer to serve their sentence in it’s entirety than be on Probation or Parole. I don’t. In prison the walls and bars can be seen and touched but in P&P too many of them are hidden and only reveal themselves once they have been transgressed.

  61. 61
    Another Scott says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Make sure you’re not dehydrated. Drink some water!

    Good luck!!


  62. 62
    Immanentize says:

    Oddly (happily?) that’s the kind of thing that can sink a creep like King. I learned it representing death row inmates — execute a man, meh — execute a “killer” dog, ZOMG!!! X100. I HOPE king has an opponent who can use this barbarity.

  63. 63
    rikyrah says:

    Once again,
    The lowlifes are coming for Obamacare😠😠

  64. 64
    El Caganer says:

    @El Caganer: Oops. Late to the party.

  65. 65
    ixnay says:

    @Anne Laurie: i recently had a call from a tech, asking on behalf of another vet about appetite stimulants for dogs. I do not know of anything other than steroids. An old precept: never let anyone die without trying steroids (vide Lily).

  66. 66
    Leto says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I know this isn’t a pill/food to take/eat, but have you tried yoga? A beginners yoga class (or dvd) is essentially a lot of stretching. I know it’s helped me with running related injuries. It’s not a “magic bullet” but it might be helpful.

  67. 67
    Immanentize says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: that is both true and poetry. I have counseled dozens of clients to take the short time offered rather than the long probation. The ones who know the system and know themselves understand what I’m talking about and make the calculations. The clients who know neither always want to get out immediately and take probation. See you soon! (I sadly think as they leave the courtroom to go to probation check-in).

  68. 68
    Manyakitty says:

    @satby: Happy birthday! I hope you get nothing but good news for the rest of the day.

  69. 69
    Kay says:


    It’s the choice of savvy defendants. Straight time. One and done. It’s sad though because the people who beg for paper are trying to avoid prison and the fact is they’re going to prison at some point anyway if they choose paper- they’ve just made the trip there a lot longer. Now this one offense is a 10 year project.

  70. 70
  71. 71
    Amir Khalid says:

    I have now, thanks. I wouldn’t really compare the 2018 election to the Arab Spring, though. The opposition to Barisan Nasional has been growing and structuring itself for well over a decade at least. The first hint of the new dawn was in 2008 when Pakatan Rakyat, Pakatan Harapan’s predecessor, contested the general election and did surprisingly well. So I see what happened here as a long-term political process. We always knew we could throw the bums out. We just had to put together the organisation and build public support and wait for our moment. We might still be waiting for our moment if Najib’s autocracy and breathtaking corruption hadn’t handed it to us.

  72. 72
    Manyakitty says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Ugh. That’s no fun. Complain away!

  73. 73
    gvg says:

    Shoplifting and spoilage is a major cost for stores like Walmart and all grocery stores. It always has been going back at least a century that statistics are kept. By cost I mean that a significant % of the cost you pay for things at stores is actually paying for losses caused by other people. I haven’t got the stats now but I want to say it’s at least a third of the cost, maybe higher. Farmers I know like to bitch about the little money they get for produce compared to what it’s sold for in the store, but they just don’t know stores economics. The grocery stores and Walmart type stores (which are economically similar) have a very tiny profit margin, it’s just that they are so big it adds up. This is why it makes economic sense to spend the money they do on things like plastic bulky packaging to make it harder to conceal/steal and tracking devices. My uncle worked as a grocery store manager for about 30+ years and the stealing he fought was endless. Store managers that didn’t prosecute and maintain a reputation as following through saw theft/spoilage go up and profits go down. The reason spoilage is lumped in with theft is that thieves both damage goods while stealing some and there is an element of spite involved in some of it and it can be deliberate and part of the same thing. Also it’s not just the customers, employees are a part of the theft too. I do think that side of it gets even more prosecution but I don’t recall it being spelled out either in my Uncles stories or by teachers in business school. Walmart is not unique or special. All the stores prosecute.
    I don’t actually have a problem with the basic idea of prosecution for theft. It should be proportional and statistics kept on effectiveness so we can learn rehabilitation etc. The trick system Kay describes where people stay stuck forever is not at all good nor useful. I don’t see how this lock them up forever on tricks and minor things even helps Walmart. It helps the prison system investors and possibly some politicians and judges. Walmart just wants people to not steal. At least I haven’t heard that they own prison stock too.

  74. 74
    Manyakitty says:

    @Booger: 🤣🤣🤣

  75. 75
    debit says:

    @satby: Happy Birthday! Best of luck with your old guy.

  76. 76
    Baud says:

    @Kay: I think it’s designed to save costs so they can process more people through the system.

  77. 77
    OzarkHillbilly says:


    At least I haven’t heard that they own prison stock too.

    You should talk to their employees. ;-)

  78. 78
    BretH says:

    @Jeffro: To be fair, the Caps threw everything including the kitchen sink at the goalie. He was great and lucky also – even if he’s great let’s see him be as lucky again. But it does have a ring of the same-old-story. (Caps fan since the team started.)

  79. 79
    Viva BrisVegas says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    I see that they are raiding Najib’s places now and finding stuff that would make Imelda Marcos blush with embarrassment at the tacky excess.

  80. 80
    WaterGirl says:


    I’m not looking for a magic bullet, there isn’t one. I just want to whine.

    I can understand that! Whine away. :-)

    I’ll just say that cramps totally suck, and it sucks that you have to live with that.

  81. 81

    @Ceci n est pas mon nym:
    I think you’re right, and this plays into why he has the job. It’s not a strategy, legal or PR. It is well established that Trump is obsessed with seeing himself talked about on television. Rudy’s job is to go on television and say what Trump wishes was true, so Trump can watch someone on television say it, thus making it Real. When it turns out that all of the things Giuliani said about what Mueller will do are wrong, CNN will get to go ‘Gasp! PLOT TWIST!’ and they love that.

  82. 82
    CliosFanBoy ne Woodrowfan says:

    Hey Kirk, you don’t get to brag about how ugly, disgusting, and nasty our ex is if you’re the one who married her…

  83. 83
    CliosFanBoy ne Woodrowfan says:

    @satby: I hope Hershey will be ok…..

  84. 84
    Baud says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    I hope things work out.

  85. 85
    JPL says:

    Tomorrow is the big wedding, since the asshole relishes news about him, I assume he’ll do something that will demand coverage. Buckle your seat belts..

  86. 86
    Litlebritdifrnt says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: In NC (at least while I was there) allowed Wal Mart to recover THREE times for shoplifting cases. 1) They are allowed to seize the merchandise and return it to the shelves. 2) They are awarded restitution for the full amount of the merchandise when the person pleads or is found guilty (or enters into Deferred Prosecution), and 3) Under a separate civil statute they write to the defendant demanding the full amount of the merchandise plus their costs which if not paid goes to collections, reporting to credit agencies. Shoplifting isn’t a problem for Wal Mart, it’s a cash cow.

  87. 87
    MomSense says:


    Sending good thoughts to Hershey and to you.

  88. 88
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Ramalama: Mark Warner too? Very disappointed in Democrats as a whole not opposing a nominee who oversaw torture. That says a lot about who we are. Not good.

  89. 89
    Kay says:

    WaPo editorial:

    Indicting Trump would be a recipe for huge political unrest.

    Here we go again. They have already accepted and internalized a whole bunch of “truths”, exactly what influenced their coverage of the election.

    In this insane, panicked attempt to retain the credibility of “institutions” (which already fucking failed, btw) they will lose still more credibility. If that’s even possible.

    They’re protecting nothing. They’re standing guard over a structure that already collapsed. This is the Comey approach all over again.

  90. 90

    I traveled up to the mountains for a Milky Way shoot, here’s what I got.

  91. 91
    eric says:

    @Kay: that statement is 100% true. But just because your child throws a tantrum when you tell him or her that he or she annot juggle chainsaws, that does not mean you stop telling them. Kay, you have touched on what most bothers the national MSM: unrest and disruption to a status quo where its members are treated well financially and live very good lives. They, as much as the rich political class, are telling the rest of us: ‘let them eat cake.’

  92. 92
    OzarkHillbilly says:


    Indicting Trump would be a recipe for huge political unrest.

    In their defense It’s true. Of course, the opposite is true too.

  93. 93
    Kay says:

    All of these “Trump can’t be prosecuted” stories sound to me like “powerful people can’t be prosecuted because they’re important” and that isn’t supposed to be the analysis.

    If this thing, this country or government, is worth anything it is resilient enough to bear the “unrest” of prosecuting powerful people and if it isn’t it SHOULD collapse. Because it’s weak and garbage and needs replaced.

    We just saw this same thing with the CIA nominee. Really? They cannot find a single OTHER qualified leader except the torture enthusiast? She’s THAT fucking singular and unique and essential? The whole system shuts down unless we promote this woman again? Then it should shut down. It’s a crap system and it’s failing all over the place.

  94. 94
    TS (the original) says:


    Indicting Trump would be a recipe for huge political unrest.

    Electing trump was a recipe for huge political unrest. Does the media even think about what they write any more.

  95. 95
    El Caganer says:

    @Kay: They don’t think there’s political unrest right now? They think that Tiki-Nazi parades are normal? What planet do these creatures come from?

  96. 96
    Kay says:

    @TS (the original):

    Powerful people can’t be prosecuted or discredited because then people won’t have faith in powerful people. If this analysis sounds like it benefits exclusively powerful people that’s because it does.

    Half the country doesn’t even bother to vote. They could haul Trump out of their in handcuffs and 99% of people would go on with their lives, exactly the same as before they did it.

  97. 97
    Kay says:

    @El Caganer:

    It’s amusing that there wasn’t a shred of concern over “institutions” when the SCOTUS nullified tens of millions of votes and installed a President.

    They’re not worried about “public unrest”. They’re worried about unrest among powerful people. Now that’s fucking scary! God knows what they’ll do if we piss them off. They could tank the economy again, or start a war.

  98. 98
    Just One More Canuck says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Jeezus – talk about an overreaction

    When I was in high school/university, I worked in the shoe department of a Woolco – WalMart took over all the Woolco stores up here in Canada. My boss (who had the greatest name ever for a shoe salesman – Mr. Buckles)had a very generous return policy – if it even looked like it might have been something we sold, he would give a refund, no questions asked. We would get work boots returned that had clearly been worn for years, as well as shoes that we would be sure had been bought somewhere else – my boss didn’t care – he knew that they would buy more stuff from us because of that policy.

    We were also down the street from one of the local peeler bars – a lot of the girls would come in to buy shoes before their shift.

  99. 99
    OzarkHillbilly says:


    They could haul Trump out of their in handcuffs and 99% of people would go on with their lives, exactly the same as before they did it.

    On this I have to disagree Kay. We all know that at least 27% would go absolutely bonkers.

  100. 100
    Comrade Nimrod Humperdink says:

    @TS (the original): I suspect Trump may already be indicted, under seal, for obstruction. The other stuff is going to take longer to reach slam dunk status, unfortunately.

  101. 101
    Steve in the SFO says:

    @JPL: I’ve been in San Francisco all week and shared the BJ item on the corgi rental for a royal wedding viewing party, to much amusement.

    One of the amused shared that Uber is testing a service where they bring you a box of puppies to play with for an hour.

    Question: WTF?

  102. 102
    Marcopolo says:

    @Ramalama: True, but pleasingly my Senator, Claire McCaskill voted against her. Yes, I was actually a little surprised. While I am sure the vote reflects McCaskill’s real position on Haspel, I was thinking she’d more likely cast a vote with her re-election in mind (note the other Dems who voted for her). I am hoping that means she’s feeling decent about her chances in Nov.

  103. 103
    El Caganer says:

    @Kay: Unfortunately they’re just as likely to tank the economy or start a war again because it makes them happy, too.

  104. 104
    JPL says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: The math is wrong. He has a firm base of 36%, and W must be sad about that.

    Actually, it’s sad for the rest of us.

  105. 105
  106. 106
    Kay says:


    27% of 50%, if that. Closer to 1% of 27% of 50%.

    We just got thru talking about the Big Machine and this a panicked attempt to protect powerful people from it, from its sometimes really unpleasant and unpredictable consequences. No. They have to go thru it too and because he’s President so do we, because that’s how it works. It’s ABOUT powerlessness. It’s about submitting. That’s the point.

  107. 107
    OzarkHillbilly says:


    I am hoping that means she’s feeling decent about her chances in Nov.

    Either that or she knows she’s toast and just doesn’t care anymore. That said, don’t ever underestimate our gal Claire.

  108. 108
    Kay says:


    Also, should voters be protected from the consequences of their poor decisions? Because God knows who they’ll elect next time.

    Where’s the moral hazard here?

  109. 109
    germy says:

    It's hard to think of something more likely to inflame Trump's insecurities than video footage of one of the world's richest men openly ridiculing him…— McKay Coppins (@mckaycoppins) May 17, 2018

    Yesterday I read Pete Davidson’s account of drumpf faking a phone call (to impress everyone that he had just learned his book was #1) during a SNL meeting. Today I see Bill Gates describing drumpf leaving an event by car and then returning a few minutes later by helicopter (so as to impress everyone with his “grand” entrance).

    President Larsen E. Whipsnade.

    Our timeline is a screwball comedy written by Joseph L. Mankiewicz and directed by Eddie Cline.

  110. 110
    Kay says:


    They could swear in Pence and Republican voters wouldn’t miss a beat. Democratic voters would have a decade long nervous breakdown but Republican voters would regroup around whoever they stuck in there.

    Trump would immediately hit the grift circuit and be wildly successful.

  111. 111
    The Other Chuck says:

    @Kay: Yes, but has Rudy Giuliani confirmed Rudy Giuliani’s rumor? Maybe we should ask Rudy Giuliani for the other perspective.

  112. 112
    Aleta says:


    Almost all details about Ms. Haspel’s record at the agency were classified, and officials there defied calls from some lawmakers to make them available to the public ahead of the vote.

    How can we hire someone who won’t give us any information about her past record; and once hired, we can be sure, will not tell us anything going forward? Drives me insane. This isn’t security, it’s complete lack of accountability.

  113. 113
    Steve in the SFO says:

    @Ramalama: the calculus may not be that straightforward. If she is going to be confirmed regardless of how you vote, and if the alternative is she isn’t confirmed is noted sociopath Tom Cotto….

  114. 114
    Kay says:


    Yeah, I don’t get it. They went out of their way to pick the candidate with all these past issues? My goodness. She must be uniquely wonderful in all the world ‘o candidates. They couldn’t just leave her where she was once she skated on the torture charges? That wasn’t enough of a gift?

    It’s not just that nothing ever happens to them. It’s that once they get off they never go away. Half the time avoiding prosecution means they get promoted. The worse they are the longer we’re stuck with them.

  115. 115
    Kay says:


    What you resist persists. They’ll continue to have criminals in office as long as they resist prosecuting them. It will always get worse.

  116. 116
    Retr2327 says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: well, for what it’s worth, I used to get horrible cramps at night after hard exercise or gardening. Gatorade by the gallon didn’t do the trick. Then I tried adding salt to it, and it helped a lot. Bottom line: that junk has too much sugar, not enough salt for people who lose a lot of salt in their sweat. (A parenthetical: my dogs LOVE to lick me after I work out).

    If you don’t have salt restrictions, try upping your intake when you sweat a lot.

  117. 117
    Leto says:

    @Marcopolo: Every one of them should have voted no. Republicans, and Republican super PACs, are still going to paint them as weak on terror, weak on immigration, weak on everything. No Trump/Republican voter will suddenly go, “I remember that they voted for Haspel, so I might change my mind about that person”. From some of them, it’s expected, but from Warner? Like, wtf?

  118. 118
    PPCLI says:

    I’m not an expert on political marketing, so there may be factors I don’t appreciate, but I think that the strategy the Democrats seem to be gravitating towards is the right one. Don’t talk “impeachment” — the Republicans are trying to press that framing, and if so you can bet they focus-grouped it to death. Talk in terms of “holding accountable”. “The founding fathers understood the importance of accountability — never just hand power to one man and worship him. They built in checks and balances for a reason. Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell aren’t doing their job — they think they know better than Madison and Hamilton. TThrow them out and elect a Congress who who are committed to the principle that no person is above the law, not even a president. Especially not a president. They want to hand a president absolute power, and look the other way as foreign governments lend him money then get suspicious favors in return. As foreign investors bail out his son-in-law’s failing building. As he makes a deal with Russia to build a hotel at the same time he’s lying in the face of the American people about it….” (etc.)
    Keep hammering the corruption, and the fact that the Republicans in Congress are encouraging it.

    If someone asks about impeachment, say “we just want to be able to find out what is going on. We want to know what is being done in secret But impeachment is a big step, and we want to get all the facts before we do anything like that. If it turns out that laws were broken, well, nobody is above the law…” (etc.)

  119. 119
    germy says:


    If you don’t have salt restrictions, try upping your intake when you sweat a lot.

    My father worked in a factory in the 1930s where the temp would reach almost 100º. He said workers would be given salt tablets, rather than water.

  120. 120
    Peale says:

    @Kay: it’s really not all that different from giving a Crossfire talk shoew to “the Mooch”. It’s rot all the way down

  121. 121
    Immanentize says:

    @Kay: Haspel was uniquely wonderful to Mike Pompeo. And his plans to be President. Running mate, maybe? And no this is not all snark at all.

  122. 122
    gene108 says:


    Warner’s vote is a bit surprising as VA is trending for Democrats, but the rest need to appeal to voters, who thought “enhanced interrogation” was a good thing, which we should still be doing.

    They are in states that voted for GWB, McCain, Romney, and Trump. They need to appease people, who lean Republican to win.

    Unless we find a way to change how people think, we are stuck where we are.

  123. 123
    Leto says:

    @Steve in the SFO: Then they need to explain why they voted the way they did. There’s always going to be a worse choice with the Drumpf administration. Their first choice is horrible, all the rest of them are horrible. Basically all of their cabinet level officials are embroiled in scandal somehow. So what’s the rational behind the yes vote? Do they think it’s going to play well with the electorate back home? The 27% dipshits aren’t going to be swayed, no matter what those senators say/do. The Republican super PACs are still coming to bury them in attack ads.

    This is not normal. None of this is normal. We’re continuing to fail to deal with the past and it’s just going to continue to bite us in the ass, continually, moving forward.

  124. 124
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Assange isn’t suffering nearly enough given that he played a huge role in getting Trump elected. He needs to shut the hell up and stop whining. He’s a fugitive from justice.

  125. 125
    Immanentize says:


    VA is trending for Democrats

    And is also the home to Langley, Quantico, and the NSA HQ. Warner’s only surprise was his momentary consideration of voting against her. Pure constituent politics.

  126. 126
    tobie says:


    I wish Nancy Pelosi had the authority to take Democratic Senators to the woodshed.

    I’m late to this thread but wanted to support your comment. Chuck Schumer needs to take some lessons from Pelosi about how to hold the Dem caucus in the Senate together. Haspel’s nomination could have been defeated since Jeff Flake and Rand Paul voted against her and McCain was absent. I’m constantly told that Heitkamp, Manchin and Donnelly are the best you can do in a red state but I think that lets them off too easily on crucial votes. I’m not asking for a fire-breathing liberal but opposition to torture should be a moral stand that all Democrats take.

  127. 127
    Leto says:

    @gene108: While I’m not looking for perfect voters (ha!), I am looking for ones who have a functioning moral compass. If we need to appeal to torture supporters to help win races… and for Senators who we can’t reliably count on to help pass legislation to boot. Is it 5pm yet?


    @Immanentize: Which constituency is bigger though? Those entities (and their respective populations) or Dems? Also how is his support/confirmation of a torture supporter going to affect his supporters?

    Just a lot of irritation on my part regarding our continual cooperation with these nominations.

  128. 128
    Immanentize says:

    Education — Yes!
    Corruption — No!
    Health care — Yes!
    Torture — No!
    Social Security/Medicare/Medicaid — Yes!
    Pollution — No!

    Would that be so very hard?

  129. 129
    Immanentize says:


    Is it 5pm yet?


  130. 130
    SWMBO says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: magnesium, potassium and water..Lots and lots of water.

  131. 131
    Gelfling 545 says:

    @Leto: Both Yoga and Taoist Tai Chi “cure” nothing but help with a vast variety of issues. Both can be practiced by anyone in whatever state of health they may be. That more people don’t take advantage of them amazes me though, as I am one of the message takers for my branch of TTC Society, I have spoken with more folks lately who are calling on the advice of their doctors.

  132. 132
    tobie says:

    @Marcopolo: I was happy that both Tester and McCaskill voted no on Haspel. I’ll make a donation to both their campaigns.

  133. 133


    Then they need to explain why they voted the way they did.

    I don’t think they do. It would be nice for us, sure. Politically, only the most deeply involved voters notice or care whether any individual Democratic Senator voted for a cabinet member. In terms of policy results, if there was a good shot at preventing one of Trump’s slots from getting filled at all, go for it. But in the pool of bad choices, eh, this one is actually one of the best. They will all, every one, support torture. That is a given. This one has at least said she thinks it was the wrong thing to do, and has a professional’s dedication to the CIA actually operating. I’m not going to get incensed if any particular Senator decides it’s in their interest to vote for her.

  134. 134
    tobie says:

    @Immanentize: The DNC should hire you! That’s one succinct and persuasive list of what the party stands for. You could add, Equal Pay For Equal Work, Yes, Discrimination, No.

  135. 135
    SWMBO says:

    @Anne Laurie: Many years ago, our Missy ruptured her right eye. It healed itself and she was able to see some out of the eye after. While she was healing, she didn’t want to chew or eat. The vet put her on maritazapine (sp?) and her appetite picked up immediately. She would only eat soft food but she would eat. It did make her sleepy. A friend around the same time was having trouble sleeping. Doc prescribed maritazapine for him to sleep. He said he was sleeping better but he couldn’t stop eating. This might be a drug to consider if they are not eating and not sleeping well because of pain.

  136. 136
    TS (the original) says:

    @Comrade Nimrod Humperdink:

    I suspect Trump may already be indicted, under seal, for obstruction

    You would be forever my mentor if this is vaguely near the truth. The world has become poorer, colder, friendless and frightening since this man became president*. I believe the relief when he goes – via election, indictment or impeachment will have folks swinging from the banisters with glee – even many who did not vote will get a benefit from his exit.

  137. 137
    Kay says:

    2h2 hours ago
    Asked about separating parents and children of illegal immigrants, Nielsen says “don’t break the law.” “If you break the law, you go to jail and you’re separated from your family. It shouldn’t be any different for illegal immigrants,” she tells driveway gaggle at WH.

    Every day, the tough on crime gang say things like this WHILE setting up elaborate special pleading for themselves.

    They should worry less about “unrest” and worry much, much more about a slow and gradual corrosion of ALL credibility, on anything.

    If they’re really pondering why “institutions” aren’t perceived as credible it’s because institutions aren’t credible. That’s not a “belief”- that’s fact. They’re protecting a story they tell themselves. It’s not grounded in anything and it has to be grounded in something.

  138. 138
    Leto says:

    @Gelfling 545: I definitely know they don’t “cure’ anything (as my entire right leg from glute to ankle can attest), I just know that as part of an overall wellness program they’re very beneficial. I think yoga/tai chi still comes off as very “new age/hippy” thinking so there’s push back against it. On top of you need to go to classes for it and people don’t have the time/inclination/money to do that. It’s also why I suggested DVD as you can flail away in the privacy of your own home.

  139. 139
    Baud says:


    Education — Yes!
    Corruption — No!
    Health care — Yes!
    Torture — No!
    Social Security/Medicare/Medicaid — Yes!
    Pollution — No!

    Would that be so very hard?

    Genius! And so radically different from our platform in 2016. No wonder we lost.

  140. 140
    SWMBO says:

    @satby: Happy Birthday! May your day be peaceful and uneventful.

  141. 141
    rp says:

    Some have argued that Warner et al were essentially casting an anti-Tom Cotton vote. i.e., he’d be the likely fallback if Haspel was rejected. No idea if that’s true.

  142. 142
    Baud says:

    @rp: My speculation is that he is working well with Burr on the Senate Intelligence Committee investigating Russia and he doesn’t want to ruffle that relationship since it’s the only part of Congress that seems to be doing a half-way job on the issue.

    Again, pure speculation.

  143. 143
    Yarrow says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Assange is free to walk out the front door of the Ecuadorian embassy anytime he likes. No one is “detaining” him. He might not like the consequences of that action, but that’s a different issue entirely. He’s in the embassy by choice and his hosts get to set the rules.

  144. 144
    rp says:

    I got into an argument on FB with a guy saying Haspel is Obama’s fault because he should have fired her and other holdovers from the Bush admin. when he had the chance. I’m so tired of this idiocy. Obama didn’t order her to torture anyone and didn’t nominate her, and yet somehow this is still on him? GTFO.

    Would Obama “cleaning house” made it less likely that Trump would hire a torturer to run the CIA? I doubt it. If haspel had been fired, she would have become a martyr and gotten a cushy job at Fox or at some think tank. And she’d still be there for Trump to nominate.

    Of course, there’s also the issue of whether Obama could have purged the CIA of non-political civil servants. If anyone thought it was a good idea for Presidents to have that power, I hope Trump has shown them why that’s a terrible idea.

  145. 145
    Peale says:

    @rp: Different electorate, different times. And there were a lot of Democratic pooh-bahs, many of them now gone, who had overseen the torture from their memberships of the intelligence committees. The electorate went for Obama to begin with because he hadn’t signed off on any of this, but was talking about making peace and reaching across the aisle to walk us down from this crap. The next Democrat, I think, is going to be a bit more vindictive because the Democratic voters are not going to worry that if we are too nasty, we’ll split the country apart. So far there aren’t enough Democrats signing on to the Trump Agenda at this point to make winning again fraught with peril. I worry about what will happen when we start regime change in Iran in earnest, though.

  146. 146
    Immanentize says:


    Equal Pay For Equal Work, Yes, Discrimination, No.

    I totally believe in this, but it has something of a big fight around the language of equal pay for equal work — that is perceived as a woman’s only issue at this point. I want us to get to something different, maybe like
    Dignity — Yes!
    Discrimination — No!

    I know this is quibbling at the edges, but what else are Democrats to do?

  147. 147
    Kathleen says:

    @satby: Happiest of Birthdays satby, and I’m sending healing vibes to you and your doggie.

  148. 148
    tobie says:

    @Immanentize: I like quibbling, and on that note I’d suggest we change “dignity” to “decent wages.” Let me know if you think of something pithier. I’m tempted–seriously–to send this list to the DNC. Yes, the email will be ignored but at least we can feel like we’ve done something.

  149. 149
    Immanentize says:

    @tobie: Then if it is the job/pay thing, is “living wage” too fraught? Probably. I was going for something that could encompass pay equity, BLM, Immigration, etc. rather than just a job/pay issue. Job/pay is pretty narrow and doesn’t include a specific program to save or a specific program to create. Too narrow for my idea of a messagable platform.

  150. 150
    satby says:

    Thanks everyone for the good wishes for both Hershey and me. He’s at the vets getting some tests done and I am waiting to go get him and hoping whatever’s hurting him is reasonably treatable. That would be a nice birthday present.

  151. 151
    Barbara says:

    @Immanentize: I personally hate the use of the word dignity like this. What does dignity encompass, in the abstract? Being treated with respect, treating someone else the way you would want to be treated. But that’s not how it’s used. In fact, it is one of those opaque words often used to mask all kinds of retrograde intentions. It is misused constantly by anti-choice extremists, e.g., “protecting the dignity of human life” is a euphemism for “I will make sure your life decisions are restricted by my own values.” No doubt, many members of Congress would say they are protecting the dignity of women in the military by not permitting them to fill combat related roles. You get the idea.

  152. 152
    Chet Murthy says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: oh wow. I used to get those. potassium pills daily, like 4 of them (b/c 3% RDA each, sigh). Or a banana at night.

  153. 153
    Immanentize says:

    @Barbara: OK, I like the word dignity because different people can find their own place in that word space. But if you notice, this was not at all on my list for just the reason we are discussing. So, consensus is, leave the list like it was originally?

  154. 154
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:


    Indicting Trump would be a recipe for huge political unrest.

    Going by all the conservatives I know, there are a hell of a lot people who don’t like Trump compared to who do.

    While I’ve meet people who voted for Trump, I’ve yet to meet a true Trump supporter on or off line. Voting against Hillary isn’t the same as voting for Trump like press likes to pretend.

  155. 155
    tobie says:

    @Immanentize: @Barbara: I take full responsibility for having messed up Immanentize’s succinct list. The only thing that I think is missing from it is a way to talk about civil rights. The party does stand for this absolutely and unabashedly, and while mentioning it in any context won’t win us over the Fox News/Rush Limbaugh fan base, it’s important to underscore for our own voters. My 2 cents, for what it’s worth.

  156. 156
    Chet Murthy says:

    @Enhanced Voting Techniques:

    I’ve yet to meet a true Trump supporter on or off line.

    Wow. You’re a lucky person. I still get angry about the three I know, and specifically one of them. Really, really angry. So count your lucky stars, I’d say.

  157. 157
    BC in Illinois says:


    Assange is free to walk out the front door of the Ecuadorian embassy anytime he likes. No one is “detaining” him. He might not like the consequences of that action, but that’s a different issue entirely.

    My brother was an accomplished high school wrestler. I remember a conversation I had with him, watching someone else’s match:
    (Me:) – That’s a choke hold!
    (Him:) – No it’s not.
    – But he’s choking him!
    – That’s only because he’s turning into the arm.
    – But if he turns the other way, he gets pinned.
    – That’s true. But it doesn’t make it a choke hold. He can always turn away from it.
    – And get pinned.
    – Well, yeah. That’s the point.

    Assange is free to walk away. No one has him in a choke hold.
    But if he walks away, he gets pinned. That’s kind of the point.

  158. 158
    J R in WV says:


    I get muscle cramps too. In my lower back they are really bad as that causes pinched nerves, numbness and pain in extremities. I got one just below my waist line in my left hip the other night just after getting into bed, worked it with my left hand, pulled my knee up to stretch, and it faded away.

    I have prescription muscle relaxer meds, I take them at bedtime, maybe this was the med slowly taking effect.

    Between the cramps and the arthritis I’m not enjoying that part of aging at all. Trying to get back in shape, get some wind back, really hard not to hurt myself.

  159. 159
    TenguPhule says:


    I wish Nancy Pelosi had the authority to take Democratic Senators to the woodshed.

    Pelosi is the House Democratic leader, not the Senate’s.

  160. 160
    TenguPhule says:


    I got into an argument on FB with a guy saying Haspel is Obama’s fault because he should have fired her and other holdovers from the Bush admin. when he had the chance.

    He’d have been accused of trying to take over the CIA with Democratic cronies and the GOP would have been screming for impeachment. Plus Haspel had Civil Service protection.

  161. 161
    J R in WV says:



    I wish Nancy Pelosi had the authority to take Democratic Senators to the woodshed.

    Pelosi is the House Democratic leader, not the Senate’s.

    Dude, we all know that. If she were Senate Dem leader we wouldn’t need to wish she could take these DINOs to the woodshed, she could just DO IT! Duh, honestly!

  162. 162
    TenguPhule says:


    My uncle worked as a grocery store manager for about 30+ years and the stealing he fought was endless. Store managers that didn’t prosecute and maintain a reputation as following through saw theft/spoilage go up and profits go down.

    And while individuals may steal $38.90 here and there and seem small on their own, Tragedy of the Commons results in businesses actually going out of business when lots of these “petty crimes” just go in and out of the system. And it really pisses the victims off to see this. There’s a reason why harsh punishments for property crime are so popular beyond “people are sadists”.

    Of course Walmart is at fault in this case because the cheap fuckers chose upbumping prosecution instead of not laying off their security personnel.

  163. 163
    TenguPhule says:

    @J R in WV:

    Dude, we all know that.

    I make no assumptions about anyone who’s name I don’t recognize.

  164. 164
    Dog Mom says:

    @Anne Laurie: Slippery Elm mixed with some very plain broth to coat the stomach helps liver dogs. There are some supplements that are effective for liver issues. I am in a good Facebook group that has lots of good information for the various Liver diseases. It is extremely complex and often you can’t get to a diagnosis with out a biopsy. We went down the path of dx’ing for one of my beagles, but before we got that far I determined that she had Cushing’s. When the vets finally humored me enough to test it was Atypical Cushing’s – but we are still on a liver friendly diet and supplements. The Cushing’s makes inappetence rare though. Hope that your pup feels better. Email me if you want any canine liver info or the fb group.

  165. 165
    Spaniel says:


    Republicans ended slavery

    Democrats started the KKK

    As the late Paul Harvey would say, “… and here is the rest of the story.” Today’s pseudo-scholars would like to throw-out “facts” to make points without really thinking. The two parties changed identities in the 20th-century. Look at maps comparing the Democrats and Republicans of the 1860’s with the layout of the 2000’s when it comes to political and religious beliefs, as well as a geographic base. The pseudo-scholars of today hide under the skirts of Republicans of a different time that would find them repulsive. Something, something, something, blackwhite.

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