The Laughter

The Wall Street Journal has a headline tonight.

Trigger warning: Talk about rape below the fold. I find this very upsetting myself.

From Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony:

“Indelible in the hippocampus is the laughter,” Ford says, her voice cracking. “The uproarious laughter between the two. They’re having fun at my expense.”

“You’ve never forgotten them laughing at you,” Leahy says.

“They were laughing with each other,” Ford replies.

“And you were the object of the laughter?” Leahy asks.

“I was underneath one of them, while the two laughed,” Ford says.

Is Susan Collins okay with her Republican colleagues laughing at her in the same way?


114 replies
  1. 1
    lamh36 says:

    YES…she is…she always has…so…next question?

  2. 2
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷 says:

    Jesus Christ that headline. How goddamn insensitive. But that was the point.

  3. 3
    lamh36 says:

    23m23 minutes ago
    NEW statement from Christine Blasey Ford’s legal team

  4. 4
    Mike in DC says:

    I have been in a depression work group for 2 weeks. This past week, after one woman shared her thoughts about her sexual assault, 3 other women (and one man) also shared that they were survivors of sexual assault. I was nowhere near ready to process that.

  5. 5

    @Mike in DC: One of the things that has amazed me is the sheer number of major sexual assaults that women (and men, too) have endured and never spoken about until now. And there are more still unspoken. I have been lucky – only several minor sexual assaults.

  6. 6
    lamh36 says:

    FUQ him and his daughter…yeah…I said it…I’m angry

    ETA: Oh and thx for the NO vote, but she can miss me with the lectures about “comity”…as if both sides are doing the same shit

    Follow Follow @jbendery
    NEWS: Murkowski is going to vote “present” on Kavanaugh tomorrow, as a gesture of “comity” for Sen. Daines, who will be walking his daughter down the aisle during Kavanaugh’s confirmation vote.

    It will not change the outcome of the vote

    7:07 PM – 5 Oct 2018

  7. 7
    Jeffro says:

    @lamh36: I hope she launches a civil suit against Kavanaugh. I hope that protestors stake out his house, the Court, and certainly anywhere he goes in public. But more than that, I hope things get rowdy outside the McConnell residence.

  8. 8
    Jerzy Russian says:

    Putting aside the allegations of sexual assault, Kavanaugh lied during his hearing, and was a dick throughout. Shouldn’t this matter?

  9. 9
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷 says:

    Don’t read the Twitter thread. It’s full of RWNJs. A few even think Ford should be prepared for perjury charges! That it was all based on …..feelings! All Republicans asked for were logic, facts, evidence, etc.

  10. 10
    jl says:

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷: ” But that was the point. ”

    To signal it is now, or should be, open season on any lesser person (aka, not filthy rich), man or woman, young or old, whatever, who gets in the way of what power wants.
    Nothing more, nothing less.

  11. 11
    piratedan says:

    @Jerzy Russian: actually that kind of makes him a perfect Republican doesn’t it? It exemplifies all of their current features, entitlement, vindictiveness and a casual cruelty to those that they feel superior to. As far as the GOP is concerned, that behavior exemplifies what they’re looking for.

  12. 12

    The Rs are laughing at those of us who form the majority and thought we had rights and a voice they had to listen to. Haha! Joke’s on us.

  13. 13
    cckids says:

    I have gunpowder in my chest
    instead of a heart now
    and it escapes my lips
    shaped like a bullet
    with your name on it.

    Soft people become dangerous
    when you destroy the things
    they hold dearest.


    Nikita Gill

    I’m quite sure they don’t realize how dangerous we all can get. I just hope it can be enough.

  14. 14
    jl says:

    @lamh36: Really? As I have typed before today, these miserable people are acting like they are all very seriously compromised by something. Who has what on Murkowski? Or WTF does she know has gone on in the national GOP that she’s been quiet about? Or something…

    Maybe I am going crazy, but I am beginning to believe the whole national level GOP leadership is compromised.

    Or maybe it is just that the GOP primary base is just so crazy, that GOP is now Trumpism and nothing else. And any politician who actually, ever, even once, says ‘no’ to anything Trump wants, is politically dead.

    It is one or the other.I think we have seen seriously weird behavior from these people.

  15. 15
    eclare says:

    @Jeffro: None of these people should ever be able to go out in public without being shouted at ever, ever again. No more trips to the grocery store, the mall, restaurants, the salon, etc. They want to be treated with respect, act accordingly. Fuck comity, that just died.

  16. 16
    lamh36 says:

    Follow Follow @alexanderchee
    On the phone with my mom, who is giving me the local Maine dirt: McConnell staff wrote Collins’ speech and staged it. Collins knows she won’t get re-elected but dreams of being governor, though if they don’t want her as senator they won’t want her for that either.

    7:13 PM – 5 Oct 2018

    If this is true, I hope Maine shows her azz the fuq’n door

  17. 17
    NR says:

    @Jerzy Russian: It should, yes.

  18. 18
    jl says:

    @lamh36: It that is true, such craven cowardly awful people with no respect whatever or anyone else or themselves.. Unbelievable.

    What is galling is the pleased look on Collins’ face, about how clever her stupid stunt was, while her GOPer mooks behind her were mugging the gravity of it all, in the pic of the speech I saw.

  19. 19

    They think we’ll forget. They think we’ll accept this. They think we will remain silent. They are wrong. So very wrong.

  20. 20
    lamh36 says:


    46m46 minutes ago
    Collins apparently wanted to run for governor this time around but GOP said no. Assumption is she must have struck a deal for these votes.
    I called my mom because she’s been working for women’s reproductive health and freedoms since before I was born and I was worried about her. She was resigned to Collins. “She’s betrayed us before. No surprise here.”

    Follow Follow @alexanderchee
    She told me she and my step dad had just sent Collins an email telling her Margaret Chase Smith was surely rolling over in her grave. I love them.

    38m38 minutes ago
    Oh: yes it makes no logical sense that Collins wants to be governor of Maine, until you learn her dad ran for the office and lost. She apparently wants to do one better. I look forward to her disappointment.

    BTW, there was a report of the turtle leaving Collins office, before her speech, w/a smile on his face saying he had good thoughts after speaking with Senator Collins

  21. 21
    Aleta says:

    Collins must be enjoying her calculated moment acting as a ‘saving vote’ to Republicans. I’m sure McConnel/Trump knew ahead of time.

    Something I wonder. CNN kept news up (until nearly noon) that as of daybreak McConnell didn’t have the votes. Was that a source deceiving them, or was there actually a senator who remained uncertain? Or were they just making news out of the fact that some had not announced?

  22. 22
    gene108 says:

    @Jerzy Russian:

    Putting aside the allegations of sexual assault, Kavanaugh lied during his hearing, and was a dick throughout. Shouldn’t this matter?

    Look who is President. The only standard is win at all costs.

    Republicans have no incentive to change. There is too much institutional pressure, from institutions they have built up over the decades to allow them to change.

    Republicans have to lose every election from now until hell freezes over for those institutions to contemplate allowing them to change.

  23. 23
    Mike in NC says:

    @Jerzy Russian: IOKIYAR

  24. 24
    Kay says:

    Of course they’re mean-spirited and nasty with a win. They’re also mean-spirited and nasty in defeat.
    There’s a constant theme here…

    They’re going to try to make Kavanaugh’s unhinged partisan rant go down the memory hole- but he wrote it, he reviewed it (along with his legal team) and he should have to live with it, so don’t forget:

    Nor should a judge give the impression of being consumed by hatred for one of the main political parties. Mr Kavanaugh described the allegations against him as “a political hit”, “revenge on behalf of the Clintons” and the fruit of “millions of dollars in money from outside left-wing opposition groups”.

    Consumed by hatred for one of the main political parties. A political party millions and millions of people support and a political party whose members represent well more than half the country. They’d all like to pretend this isn’t what he thinks, but it is what he thinks- he said so. Remember it when he speaks, remember it when he signs a ruling- consumed by hatred- of you and tens of millions like you. That’s your “public servant”, right there. He doesn’t serve you. He serves the GOP. He told you.

  25. 25
    Honus says:

    Yeah, fuck Joe Manchin, and I say that as somebody that knows him. Does he think the fucking republicans are going vote for him now? As Harry Truman said, between a fake republican and and a real republican they’ll vote for the real republican every time. Manchin’s ten point lead just evaporated. Democrats are through with him.

  26. 26
    Aleta says:

    @lamh36: She did run for gov once (lost by a lot, then ran for the Senate seat of a mentor a couple years later and won).

  27. 27
    Mai Naem mobile says:

    Fuck Rapeblican Suzee Collins.i don’t think as another one of Trumpov’s bitches she won’t be running again. She and her political consultant husband are smashing and grabbing.

  28. 28
    Aleta says:

    @lamh36: ok, so that sounds like mcconnell wasn’t sure either. or something. I’m so angry I can barely spit.

  29. 29
    gene108 says:

    I think one reason there was so much commity in the Senate is they were pretty much all white men.

    They didn’t have to come to work and treat women and minorities as equals.

  30. 30
    Bill Arnold says:


    BTW, there was a report of the turtle leaving Collins office, before her speech, w/a smile on his face saying he had good thoughts after speaking with Senator Collins

    Not sure I want to see a picture of that “smile”

  31. 31
    MomSense says:


    The timing is a bit off because we are electing a Governor this November for a four year term. her Senate seat is up for election in 2020. The earliest she could serve as governor is 2022.

  32. 32
    Kay says:

    Wouldn’t it be such a great thing to save Heitkamp? She’s behind but it would be so great to pull it out for her. How many people are in North Dakota, 700k or so? If you got her supporter turnout to 90% or something?

    It would just be a delightful upset- all the savvy douchebags have written her off but they’re wrong half the time anyway.

  33. 33
    James E Powell says:

    I’m not all gloom and doom; I’m also unbridled rage and a thirst for revenge. Like if you combined Eeyore with The Hulk.

  34. 34
    NotMax says:

    @Mike in NC

    Someone ought to seek comment from former federal judge Walter Nixon, who was impeached and convicted in 1989, for perjury.

    If that’s too far to travel for the Villagers, they could head over to the House to solicit comment from former federal judge Alcee Hastings, also impeached and convicted in 1989, for perjury and bribery, as he’s been an elected Representative from Florida since 1993.

    (Both were nominated, BTW, by LBJ (hi, raven!).)

  35. 35
    lamh36 says:

    @Honus: Being from La, Mary Landrieu was my Senator for many years. LMBAO at the folks flooding my TL w/tweets defending Joe Manchin, & remembering how some of the same folks talked complete shit about Mary Landrieu back then…but wants folks to be understanding about ole Joe Manchin

  36. 36
    James E Powell says:


    The question is, can Heitkamp be saved?

  37. 37
    MomSense says:

    @James E Powell:

    I’m hearing “you wouldn’t like me when I’m angry” in his voice. Very good.

  38. 38
    SenyorDave says:

    WSJ, classy as always. Their opinion page was garbage before Murdoch bought it, and he made it a lot worse. That is saying a lot considering just how bad it was. In all seriousness, Rupert Murdoch has done more damage to the world than most dictators you could name. It’s hard to imagine that hell is bad enough for him. My guess is hell wouldn’t want Murdoch because even they have standards.

  39. 39
    NotMax says:


    It was the Native American vote that provided the winning margin for her last time. With sufficient Native American turnout uptick as a result of her no on Kavanaugh, could well occur again.

    I’ll again mention donating to the Native American Rights Fund, currently challenging the punitive voter I.D. law recently put back into effect after early voting had already commenced and also working on registering voters on reservations. Donation button on page at the link.

  40. 40
  41. 41
    Bill Arnold says:

    I’m still not sure whether Senator S. Collins realizes that that BK WSJ OpEd was targeted at her, and that it was deception through and through. He’s lying about his avowed intent to be a team-player “brain in a vat” with respect to decision making in partisan cases[0], and being deeply misleading at best about a carefully composed pre-written[1] opening statement that is obviously angry and partisan even in transcript form.
    [0] “As I have said repeatedly, if confirmed to the court, I would be part of a team of nine, committed to deciding cases according to the Constitution and laws of the United States. I would always strive to be a team player.”
    [1] “I wrote it myself yesterday afternoon and evening.”

  42. 42
    Woodrow/Asim says:

    @lamh36: Or the folks who used to tear at “Blue Dogs”…until almost all of them were gone.

    The only way to have all-Progressive Democrats is to Vote Them In. And keep voting them in, so they know they are safe to make the big changes we need.

    We gotta build on this anger and energy. Use it to re-work our ground games, to build local and state political infrastructure and capital, to keep pushing at the entrenched local right-wing pols until they move aside. Break out the hard tools if we have to, but show when we can a better way to govern.

    We can’t fix cultures of racism and misogyny. But we can start to “win small”, over and again. We can change the ground game, the one the GOP used to build the toxic tower of misplaced rage that’s about to take over SCOTUS, after decades of trying.

  43. 43
    jl says:

    @Bill Arnold: I’m not sure whether Collins cares. She might care enough to spend a minute or two deluding herself into believing that the editorial gives her some political cover, I can’t imagine anything more than that.

  44. 44
    Dan B says:

    @Jeffro: A friend of mine is in DC this week. She sent video of a packed hallway outside McConnell’s office chanting “No more rapists in power!” The crowd was mostly women of color.
    I hope they build this into an organizing effort with lots of other groups who are tired of the right wing trampling their rights. Knowing Tammy it’s in the works.

  45. 45
    Bill Arnold says:


    WSJ, classy as always. Their opinion page was garbage before Murdoch bought it,

    I had a Marxist friend in the 1980s who subscribed to the WSJ because it was a pretty solid newspaper if one avoided the rabid-loony-toon opinion pages and one wanted to truly understand the beast (capitalism in the US). Agreed that since Murdoch the rest of the paper has deteriorated (Barry Ritholtz 2012)

  46. 46
    Bill Arnold says:


    She might care enough to spend a minute or two deluding herself into believing that the editorial gives her some political cover, I can’t imagine anything more than that.

    Well, exactly. That was the point of the OpEd.

  47. 47
    Jeffro says:

    Ok, re-focusing the rage a bit here…

    Here, in no particular order, is my Top 10 list of things I want done to reclaim our democracy. Feel free to re-order, add, subtract, whatever, but I think it’s a platform for getting back to an actual representative democracy/democratic republic/something that doesn’t SUCK like the current arrangement…

    – abolish the Electoral College and go to a direct popular vote for president
    – prohibit gerrymandering of Congressional districts (either independent commissions draw the lines or computers do, for compactness)
    – abolish the Senate or limit it strictly to approving judicial and executive branch nominations (w/ X days to call a hearing, Y days for an up-or-down floor vote)
    – campaign finance reform 1: total donations per person per year year limited to X% of a minimum-wage worker’s yearly pay
    – campaign finance reform 2: no corporate donations (hey, if unions can’t donate…) to campaigns or causes
    – House membership doubled in size and terms extended to four years, concurrent with presidential election years
    – Puerto Rico and DC statehood
    – candidates for federal office must release tax returns from when they were 18 on up or be ineligible to run
    – all federal judge terms (including SCOTUS) limited to 12-16 years (maybe 16 years as counted from the next presidential election year)…all noms must be voted on per above
    – Election Day is a federal holiday, natch!

  48. 48
    J R in WV says:

    I donated to Sen. Heitkamp just a few minutes after I had heard she had decided to vote against “Judge” Kavanaugh, the perjurer violent alcoholic Greek dick. I can’t tell what I’m going to do about Sen. Manchin. I’ve met Joe, I know about his wife’s self-dealing (she was in charge of the Board of Education of the state of WV when she decided that every school needed Epi-Pens from their daughter’s firm) and I know about their daughter’s malicious pricing policies for patented generic drugs.

    He’s apparently decided to vote to confirm a Republican fascist, perjured, alcoholic, violent sexual assaulter. But his opponent is a full-throated fascist Russo-Republican, currently the AG of the state, and suing to take health insurance away from most of his constituents, so worse than a single despicable vote in the Senate by far.

    So I’m leaning towards voting for him, but otherwise not supporting him at all. Which is what I was already doing, really. I may just not vote in the Senatorial race, although I’ve never done that before, leaving a vote blank. Maybe write in an honest guy? I know some…

  49. 49
    Mnemosyne says:

    My shrink officially advised me to write postcards to voters this weekend, and she’s going to sign up to do that herself now that she knows it’s a thing. So at least I’ll make a little positivity for myself this weekend. Now I’m going to eat some chicken tamales.

  50. 50
    Jeffro says:

    @Dan B: That’s awesome. Hope McConnell is greeted with the same every time he shows his face.

  51. 51
    chopper says:

    as to susan collins hey, it’s alright. even if you lose reelection you’re still good. i’ll bet by then they’re going to need a new actress to play Aunt Lydia and you’ll be perfect for the part.

  52. 52
    Dan B says:

    @lamh36: McConnell’s staff wrote Collin’s speech! That’s a great meme, maybe tweaked a bit – something about McConnell, a Southern Gentleman, helped the Little Lady from Maine with her fine speech.
    Trvor Noah has a great piece on the communications onslaught the GOP and hard right are unleashing, especially the impact of “Men are being attacked” message. Me Too, and the USA as a whole, are at a critical juncture. I hope we can get out the message that we’re trying to preserve the American Dream of opportunity and justice for all. Put the right on their heels.

  53. 53
    Aleta says:

    @NotMax: ok, will do. Thanks.

  54. 54
    jl says:

    @Bill Arnold: Thanks. We agree then. I missed the point of your comment a little.

  55. 55
    jl says:

    @J R in WV: One those evils will be in office, no matter what. So you gotta do what you gota do to keep the worse out.

  56. 56
    Mnemosyne says:

    @James E Powell:

    I’m not all gloom and doom; I’m also unbridled rage and a thirst for revenge. Like if you combined Eeyore with The Hulk.

    I’m good with that.

  57. 57
    khead says:

    I have nothing of value to add. Just wanted to say that I’m bitter as fuck so I am heading to the shore with Mrs. Khead tomorrow. Because we could use some ocean. If you need some therapy check out my cats. That is all.

  58. 58
    J R in WV says:


    I like your proposed governmental reform plan. But most all of it requires constitutional amendments, which are really hard. I think changing the size of the House is just legislative, and campaign contributions would be until the “Supremes” rule that we can’t interfere with political speech/money.

    I’m good with speech = money if everyone has the same amount of money to use to speak with!

    And making election days a Federal bank holiday could be done, pretty easily. I think requiring more flexible voting dates would be better, early voting, voting by mail, requiring adults to vote in order to receive tax refunds or some similar federal benefits…

    But most of your other ideas involve things defined in the constitution, which would be really hard without a national push… not that that makes them bad ideas!

  59. 59
    Litany says:

    God, Congressional Democrats really are fucking useless. At times like this I’m reminded of Charlie Brown trying to kick the football. Democrats expect Republicans to act principled, act shocked when they don’t, and then make ineffectual bleating noises about how outraging it all is after the fact. Lemme take a poll here: is anyone really shocked that the FUCKING WRAY-LED FBI didn’t ride in like the cast of SVU and deliver the goods on Kavanaugh at the eleventh hour? Heroes like Ford deserve better.

    Why not lead your own investigation? Plenty of the witnesses the FBI wouldn’t talk to want to be heard; talk to them yourselves or hire a firm that investigates such things to do it for you. Follow leads, see what you can turn up, and then stick Pelosi or Bernie or Kamala Harris on the capitol steps with Deborah Ramirez and have a press conference. Don’t just throw up your hands and act all helpless while Republicans take a dump all over American democracy.

  60. 60
    Dan B says:

    @lamh36: McConnell’s staff wrote Collin’s speech! That’s a great meme, maybe tweaked a bit – something about McConnell, a Southern Gentleman, helped the Little Lady from Maine with her fine speech.
    Trvor Noah has a great piece on the communications onslaught the GOP and hard right are unleashing, especially the impact of “Men are being attacked” message. Me Too, and the USA as a whole, are at a critical juncture. I hope we can get out the message that we’re trying to preserve the American Dream of opportunity and justice for all. Put the right on their heels.@Jeffro: Great list! Any two of them would be terrific achievements.

  61. 61
    J R in WV says:


    Good advice, minimize the evil… That’s probably actually Joe Manchin, Patrick Morrisey is far worse as best I can tell.

    Hard to say, really.

  62. 62
    NotMax says:


    Curious as to how you define winner of popular vote (a majority or a plurality), as there have been 19 instances of people who became president without cracking 50% of the popular vote. Both Cleveland and Clinton twice received less than 50%.

    For example, if just a plurality decides the winner Andrew Jackson would have become president in 1824 rather than, as it turned out by way of the House, John Quincy Adams.

  63. 63
    J R in WV says:

    @Dan B:

    There’s an old saying about male and female relationships.

    Men are afraid women will make fun of them — women are afraid men will kill them.

    I think this is all we have to say about “Men are being attacked” messages. It’s accurate and to the point. How many men have been killed or assaulted by their dates? versus How many women have been killed or attacked by their dates? Way more men attacking women, I’m not going to look up the numbers, way too depressing!

  64. 64
    Kay says:

    @Bill Arnold:

    I don’t know how anyone can consider him credible in any way. This is a judge who carefully composed the most important statement of his adult life, bragged about writing it, delivered it with what appeared to be real certainty, then turned around a week later and wrote an entirely different statement in an op ed. WTF? This is Donald Trump level lying.

    No one should believe a word he says. Which was the truth? Last weeks or this weeks?

    This didn’t start when he was nominated, either. He’s a really practiced liar. He’s not new at this.

    You know, they can continue to pretend it doesn’t matter that these people they hire lie all the time but it really does. The lying is a problem. It runs through everything they do. It’s like some infection that keeps spreading. It’s now infected their judges. Someone in that party is going to have to call a halt to it, draw some kind of line.

  65. 65
    Jeffro says:

    @J R in WV: Oh, I know they would be tough…which is why it’s past time to be talking about them. We can’t just accept that an ever-diminishing number of Americans in sparsely populated red states are going to keep having a check on legislation and judicial appointments (much less electing the president her/himself).

  66. 66
    MisterForkbeard says:

    @J R in WV: No. Vote for Manchin in the general – if we can get his Senate seat that’s better for the future even if he’s still in it.

  67. 67
    Jeffro says:

    @NotMax: I define it as whomever gets 1 more vote than the next gal/guy, so yeah, a plurality is fine. If we go to a runoff system where the top two vote-getters go head-to-head, that’s fine with me. Anything other than the current disaster based on southern states’ slave-holding past would be great.

  68. 68
    MisterForkbeard says:

    @Litany: They are in fact planning on doing most of this when they retake the house, but doing so while the FBI ‘investigation’ was ongoing would have been a really bad idea

  69. 69
    Litany says:

    @MisterForkbeard: Yup, taking effective action only after the fight is decisively lost sounds entirely in line with my understanding of Democratic strategy.

  70. 70
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Litany: What could they have done that they did not do? I call troll.

  71. 71
    Chetan Murthy says:

    @J R in WV: I guess I don’t understand. He wasn’t the vote that put Rapey-K over [that was Collins (with the inevitable assist from Fat Termite offstage)] so why the anger?

    YES, he voted for Rapey-K. NO, he didn’t put Rapey-K over. Isn’t that enough? I mean, we should we give a fuck about symobolic votes? What matters is -substantive- votes, no?

    I’m not trying to be tendentious here: I actually want to understand.

  72. 72
    Bill Arnold says:


    I don’t know how anyone can consider him credible in any way. This is a judge who carefully composed the most important statement of his adult life, bragged about writing it, delivered it with what appeared to be real certainty, then turned around a week later and wrote an entirely different statement in an op ed. WTF? This is Donald Trump level lying.

    I just read (refuse to listen to it) S. Collins’ transcript from her speech today announcing that she would “vote to confirm Judge Kavanaugh. Thank you, Mr. President.”.
    In it she repeatedly talks about BK’s testimony and his answers to direct questions from her. I do not understand why she would believe him given his blatant lying, last week in particular. Has she been threatened or bribed or both? It’s just bizarre given what information I’ve seen; perhaps have missed some stuff.

  73. 73
    eemom says:


  74. 74
    MisterForkbeard says:

    @Litany: Creating a partisan counter investigation in the middle of a supposedly “non partisan” FBI investigation would have backfired massively.

    Democrats did in fact try to help the various witnesses and accusers get their stories to the FBI and the press when they were ignored by the Senate at large and the FBI, and they screamed about the direction the FBI was taking. Stop pretending they were just fucking around, troll.

  75. 75
    Brickley Paiste says:

    Or maybe get out there and confront and ridicule them instead of spending hours a day circle jerking with people whose political views are within 1 miliradian of yours on the political spectrum?

  76. 76
    MisterForkbeard says:

    @eemom: I don’t think anyone is actually stupid as Litany sounds here. It must be deliberate.

    Hell. if you look at this whole clusterfuck and decide to get angry at Democrats you are a giant goddamned moron. It’s like its somehow our fault when the Republicans turn out to be horrible monsters again.

  77. 77
    JanieM says:

    @lamh36: @MomSense: I’m sad to say I won a bet I made a couple of weeks ago that BK would be confirmed, and another bet that Collins would vote yes. Since I’m on a roll (though not happy about it), I’m going to bet, nay predict, that Susan Collins will never be governor of Maine. People aren’t going to forget this day.

    I’m curious about the Crowd Pac fund: does anyone know what happens to it if she doesn’t run for re-election in 2020?

  78. 78
    Bill Arnold says:

    I kinda liked the original. :-)

    (Not addressed to you, at all.)
    People need more practice taking a brief meta-inventory of their emotional states after reading something that might be intended to manipulate people emotionally.

  79. 79
    Tim C. says:

    @Litany: Two options:

    A) You don’t know any better and enjoy the feeling of purity that comes from blaming people fighting for what you claim to believe in. In that case I’ll tell you what my dad told me when I was 12. That’s fine, it’s normal, just close the door to your bedroom before you do it. You also might not want to talk about it as it kinda isn’t the thing people enjoy discussing.

    B) Вы хорошо справляетесь с работой, я впечатлен простым и ясным сообщением, призванным препятствовать врагам вашего работодателя. Но вы должны пойти куда-то еще, где они более охотно покупают то, что вы продаете.

  80. 80
    eemom says:


    God, Congressional Democrats really are fucking useless.

    A competing “investigation” is a bullshit argument; but there IS a grain of truth to this that you don’t mention.

    The Democrats had in front of them during the hearing last week the July 1 entry on Kavscum’s calendar that DID corroborate Dr. Ford’s testimony. Why in the everloving fuck did they not hammer him on that??

  81. 81
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @JanieM: A state that could elect Paul LePage twice could elect anybody.

    (Unfortunately, I think the courts overturned ranked-choice voting, which means that the three-way split that did that could still happen. Mainers seem unduly preoccupied with “independent” candidates.)

  82. 82
    Kay says:

    @Bill Arnold:

    I don’t know what she thinks and there’s no way to make sense of it. She believes Ford but also believes Kavanaugh?

    It’s just “reasonable-sounding” gibberish. There’s no real way to parse it and figure it out. My overall sense was she’s saying she’s voting for him to punish protesters and political operatives, which has nothing to do with HIS merit or lack of merit

    She’s sending a message? It’s this bullshit message-sending thing again? I don’t know- she could have narrowed it and just judged the guy on merit. I’m not clear why she went this super-meta route and saw her vote as some signalling on civil discourse. I never liked her. I feel like she’s not a real lawmaker- she sees herself as a symbol of “moderation” regardless of the practical effect of her specific actions and decisions. It’s just not how I see her job. It’s oddly abstract, like she supports generic “moderation” but not actual issues other than that.

  83. 83
    Litany says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: You’re kidding, right?

    A good start would be calling Manchin’s bluff. Make it clear to him that if he doesn’t fall into line on this one Democrats will do everything they can to bury the guy. Instead, Dems seem far more interested in giving cover to their fellow senators intent on voting in the creepy rapist. Yesterday Perez tweeted “Republicans are rushing through a confirmation process by moving one step closer to a vote for a lifetime appointment to the SCOTUS. Brett Kavanaugh is unfit to serve on the highest court in the land. Call Senators Collins, Flake, and Murkowski and tell them to vote NO.”

    Is there a name missing from that list? No? Must just be my imagination…

    The actual hearing itself was another fucking nightmare. I’ve read reports that Democrats didn’t coordinate their questions, and BOY did it show. Durbin and Klobuchar were fine, but the vast majority of the D simply whiffed. They made self-important pretty little speeches, none of which ultimately mattered. All of America was watching, and Democrats stuck to winning meaningless little procedural points. Maybe I’m crazy, but I think ordinary Americans might care to know little details like the fact that Mark Judge wrote “certain women should be struck regularly, like gongs” in his yearbook. Why was Kavanaugh doing with someone like that in high school? WE both know details like that don’t make a damn difference either way in establishing the truth, but BOY do they matter in the court of public opinion. I guarantee you more Americans were talking about how Ford got home or how she paid for her polygraph than about how Kavanaugh couldn’t decide how many beers were “too many.”

    For that matter, bring in a sex crimes prosecutor and see what she can dig up. Call it what you want, but Republicans had the right idea when they brought in someone who actually understands how to uncover the truth in these sorts of situations. They shuffled her off the stage as soon as she started asking inconvenient questions, but the point remains that our own version of Mitchell could have done a much better job holding Kavanaugh’s feet to the fire. Kavanaugh had an entry in his calendars that lined up *exactly* with Ford’s timeline and named many of the people she claimed were there, which is an extraordinary feat (especially seeing as Kavanaugh claims that he and Ford were never in the same social circles). That precise list of names only shows up a very few times on the calendars. Why was this not brought up?

    Next thing Democrats could do is stop operating as if their Republican colleagues were interested in reality or capable of shame. This is the big one, so bear with me a sec.

    Right now I’m working with a non-profit that advocates on a variety of progressive causes, from prison labor to medicare expansion. Overwhelmingly, what I’ve found is that most people have the same values as our org but don’t follow the news as closely as you or I. Mainstream dems don’t realize it, but we follow politics the same way my uncles follow basketball. This sort of engagement is NOT NORMAL, and Congressional Democrats fit that pattern and accordingly message like a bunch of incompetent technocrats. As far as most people know, Dems called for an FBI investigation, Republicans gave them one, nothing came up, and Republicans went forwards with the vote. If you pay attention you MIGHT realize what a sham it all was. Guess what? Most Americans don’t know or care.

    Why were we putting all our hopes on an organization that routinely surveils BLM protests and signs off on waterboarding? Democrats spent SO much time and political capital pushing for a measure that was never going to bear fruit. News flash to anyone not paying attention: LAW ENFORCEMENT IS DEEPLY CONSERVATIVE EVEN IN NORMAL TIMES, AND AT THE MOMENT THE ENTIRE GOVERNMENT HAS BEEN SEIZED BY AGENTS OF A FOREIGN GOVERNMENT WITH NO INTEREST IN POLITICAL NORMS OR DUE PROCESS. Kavanaugh acted like a GOP operative at that hearing; it’s altogether appropriate to conduct opposition research on him as if he is one. Hold an independent investigation, publish your results, then hold a publicized press conference and let the dozens of witnesses speak.

    The fact that all of this will undoubtedly get me branded by the commentariat as “just another troll” and “dangerously unhinged” is evidence enough of why we keep losing.

  84. 84
    eemom says:

    @Bill Arnold:

    I realized that I had misread the Splinter piece. Their commentary IS often of the factless, knee jerk ilk of this commenter; but this time they made a valid point.

  85. 85
    Aleta says:

    @Bill Arnold: It felt like his/their attempt to counteract the last week’s statements from influential people that he’s temperamentally or ethically unfit. Especially those who who said their opinion of him had changed.

    He couldn’t deny his performance, so he had to say that it wasn’t really him. (As though his oppponents had forced an emotional doppleganger to spring out, so they were to blame.)
    (Unanswered: What happens the next time his ‘good name’ is dissolving?)

    In the last 3-6 days, those calling him unfit included: 350 lawyers in Alaska, Justice Stevens, increasing numbers of Yale law school professors, Wittes and other conservative commenters, prominent editorials, a few more people close to him at Yale, the ABA. Around the same time that the WSJ piece appeared, the ABA also notified the SJC that it’s reevaluating their rating of him.

    Collins and other Rs needed pretend ‘evidence to weigh’ as a counterargument. Kavanaugh, expecting confirmation, needed something for Fox’s mouths to repeat as though reporting from the WSJ, on why he’s really a good guy.

    With his low poll numbers, they remain worried that his biased decisions will appear biased.

  86. 86
    JanieM says:

    @Matt McIrvin: I live in Maine, I’m well aware of the fact that the three-way split could happen again. In fact, this November it’s a four-way split in the governor’s race. We still have ranked-choice voting for some things:

    Even with Tuesday’s vote, ranked-choice voting will stay in place only for certain elections in Maine—primaries for state and federal offices, and the general election only for U.S. House and Senate races. The presidential elections are excluded entirely. And because the state’s highest court found that the system conflicted with the Maine constitution’s call for state elections to be decided by a “plurality” of voters, the November ballots for governor and the legislature will not be ranked-choice. Advocates want the legislature to amend the constitution to allow ranked-choice voting, but GOP opposition makes that unlikely anytime soon.

    (From here:

    Paul LePage notwithstanding, I’m still betting that Susan Collins will never be governor of Maine.

  87. 87
    Kay says:

    @Bill Arnold:

    The sense that they’re punishing women really bothers me. That women got too loud and too mouthy and it upset the status quo and so now there must be BLOWBACK so we learn a hard lesson. It’s just starting too. I can tell. They’re just gearing up with the scolding and stern lectures that will be coming in the next few days. I mean honestly, who do they think they are talking to grown women like this? I sat at my desk and watched the JOB APPLICANT pitch an absolute hissy fit and he wants to tell us ordinary women- members of the public- are out of line?

    This is backward. He has it backward. I’m not looking for a job from him. He’s looking for a job from me.

  88. 88
    Tenar Arha says:

    @J R in WV: I’m agreed with everyone else, best to hold your nose & vote for him as the lesser evil.

    But resolve to either start now getting involved finding him a high quality primary opponent, or even put into your calendar helping them out in 2024. (Since I’m all the way up here, I’ve just got a reminder set to donate to whoever that is for Jan 1, 2024).

  89. 89
    Bill Arnold says:

    OK, and you’re right I think.
    And Litany@82 makes plenty pf points that I fully agree with. (I personally think that Sheldon Whitehouse’s questions were needed to prove that he’s a perjurer, but whatever.)

  90. 90
    Aleta says:

    @Bill Arnold: One thing I believe is that Trump worked her by (it was reported) consulting her before the nomination, as though he valued her advice. Appealing to her conceit, that he wanted to pick someone she would be OK with. Which would make it harder for her to withdraw support. Then, there’s the influence of her husband, a former lobbyist/consultant co. who’s now on her staff. The Trumps had begun these overtures to her by the summer after the election.

    Fwiw, there were local reports in the last year of issues she used to support that were undercut; she then said she had not known about it, though her staff had been called repeatedly and asked for meetings. Just my opinion, but I also think she is thinking of a future outside of elected politics. (Tea Party has attacked her heavily in the last 4 years.) Rs make lucrative offers I’m sure.

    And she’s always been a fake with a good PR machine that she inherited from Cohen. When Snowe was still around, Collins was careful not to be caught to the right of Snowe (who supported abortion). Snowe was more popular and Collins slid along on that by pretending to be like her.
    But, just my opinions.

  91. 91
    ruemara says:

    I am very drunk so bare with me. I detest these people. I already have to deal with the pedophile POTUS and his nazi cabinet. Now I get mr civil rights sucks and hey I”m a rapist? Fuck this. Fuck Bernistas. Fuck people who said I was hyperbolic.

    @Litany: Really? Dems? And fuck people harping on Dems. YOU HAD ONE GODDAMNED JOB! VOTE IN EVERY FUCKING ELECTION, YOU SACKS OF MUCILAGE!

    It is very hard to be in a world that hates you. Nothing I’ve experienced has changed my mind on that. I hate this world

  92. 92
    Litany says:

    @MisterForkbeard: Of course the Republicans are the monsters. No one denies that except MAYBE Congressional Democrats, who still against all evidence consider them “distinguished colleagues.” The Dems are just the woefully incompetent opposition who keep getting dragged along by the Right’s decades-long mission to move the Overton window without articulating a reasonable alternative or standing up for their constituents in any meaningful way.

    Wanna see what I mean? Look on and weep at James Comey, a #Resistance leader who signed nevertheless off on waterboarding and handed the election to Donald Trump on a silver platter. Democrat talking heads are nevertheless praising him over his GUTSY tweets as if this lifelong Republican is what we should be aiming for in responsible government. Millions of Dems fawned over Bush giving Michelle candy and waxed nostalgic over a supposedly better age of politics, as if W didn’t lie us into a war that killed millions and even now works behind the scenes to shepherd the nomination of freaks like Kavanaugh to completion. Dems simply have no appetite for actually doing politics.

    Want another example? Republicans have been working for DECADES to suppress the vote through any means available. When’s the last time you’ve seen Democratic leadership seriously push for automatic registration or the statehood of DC and Puerto Rico?

  93. 93
    Aleta says:

    @JanieM: I saw something tonight on twitter from Act Blue, saying that it now goes to the Dem candidate for Senate. I’d like to see a verification to be sure. Since we don’t know the candidate yet, it’s ?

  94. 94
    dww44 says:

    @J R in WV: I say you vote for Manchin. By all measures he seems to be a better choice for WVA and the country than his opponent. And, you never know, his retaining his Dem seat just might give us back the Senate.

  95. 95
    Litany says:

    @ruemara: I vote in all my elections down to municipal, and do my best to volunteer for even the most odious of Blue Dogs on GOTV and voter registration. I know moderates love take out their rage on the left rather than take criticism, but your anger is just as misplaced as you’re asserting mine is. Never forget that Clinton voters in 2008 flipped for McCain far more often than Bernie voters flipped for Trump (or any other third party candidate). What’s more, the vast majority of Bernie voters who made that switch weren’t registered Democrats, didn’t identify as liberals, and never would have voted for Clinton anyways. Those of us on the left who want Democrats to do better are still in the trenches with you, but it’d be nice if that support was reciprocal.

    “It is very hard to be in a world that hates you.” Agreed on that one for sure.

  96. 96
    Aleta says:

    @JanieM: I see the anti-Collins Crowd Pac is now at 2.788 million. On Sept. 28 it was something over 1.5 million.

  97. 97
    Yutsano says:

    @Litany: Your concern is duly noted, nym I have never seen before.

  98. 98
    Aleta says:


  99. 99
    Ian R says:

    @Aleta: Right, but that’s the ActBlue ME-Senate fund, not the CrowdPac “whoever opposes Collins” one.

  100. 100
    Aleta says:

    @JanieM: @Aleta:
    Sorry, what I saw was not an Act Blue response to a Q about the Crowd Pac fund, as I thought. It was Act Blue’s response to a question about the Act Blue fund for the Collins opponent. I believe the two funds are different?

  101. 101
    Aleta says:

    @Aleta: Huh. Crowd Pac is 2.8 million now (14 minutes later).

    Hope as much $ is going as quickly to 2018 Dem candidates.

  102. 102
    Aleta says:

    @Ian R: Thanks for catching that.

  103. 103
    JanieM says:

    Aleta — Thanks for answering, and yes, as far as I can see on the Crowd Pac site, they didn’t say what they’d do with the money if Collins doesn’t run. I want to calibrate how much I donate based on wanting particularly badly to support defeating Collins. If I knew she wasn’t running, I might spread the $ (such as it is) around a little differently. I’ll continue to try to find out. I suppose they don’t want to hold the fund (and charging people’s accounts) long enough to find out what Miss “I’m concerned and I’m going to pretend to be conflicted and keep everyone guessing” decides about 2020.

    $2.8 million … that’s fantastic.

  104. 104
    FlipYrWhig says:


    They made self-important pretty little speeches, none of which ultimately mattered.

    I dunno, MAYBE, and know this would be wicked hard to believe, the Democratic members of the Judiciary Committee handled the supplemental hearing as a last-ditch effort to get one PARTICULAR guy, Jeff Flake, to do something, by saying things that would appeal to a conservative. As opposed to saying things that would appeal to some tough-acting holier-than-thou schmuck on the Internet who was going to complain about them anyway because he’s so hardcore like that.

  105. 105
    MisterForkbeard says:

    @Litany: It’s not that you’re a troll, necessarily. These are just really dumb ideas.

    For one: the Democrats NEED Manchin to increase their chances of holding the Senate. They can’t cut him off and Manchin knows that. They don’t have any real leverage there, and an empty threat would make things worse, not better.

    The rest of your points are also pretty stupid. You’re saying “The Republicans can’t be shamed and have no moral compass.” Well, in that case we’re fucked and there was literally no way to get them to peel off.

    …also, no one fucking things Comey is part of the Resistance. It’s bullshit like this that gets you called out as a troll – maybe you’re just bitter, but you’re definitely angry at the wrong people and you’re throwing dumb ideas that would make things even worse around, and then acting all affronted when people tell you that you’re being an idiot.

  106. 106
    ruemar says:

    @Litany: blah blah. You betray a lack of knowledge.

  107. 107
    Procopius says:

    @TaMara (HFG):I surely hope you’re right, and some of us won’t forget, but in my experience the vast majority of Americans have the attention span of a fruit fly. That’s why journalism schools teach that every story must contain an explanation of what happened before yesterday if it figures in the story. Many “journalists” ignore the rule, now.

  108. 108

    Welcome to the Kingdom of Gilead

    I do not, in The Handmaid’s Tale recall this sheer viciousness of language. I wonder, even, if women’s right to vote is in danger. It would follow: some of the most committed opponents of the Republican Party are women, and after the likely (barring miracle or act of terrorism) confirmation of Kavanaugh they are going to be implacable opponents.

    Beyond that, I think we can say that any women’s rights case that comes to the Supreme Court will be decided against women. Not just Roe, but Griswold is in danger, not just Griswold, but decisions I don’t even know the names of and new cases that aren’t even named yet.

  109. 109
    Ilefttxwhenannlost says:

    @J R in WV: this x 100000000

  110. 110
    Litany says:

    @FlipYrWhig: If any Dem seriously entertained the notion that Flake might grow a spine they’re even dumber as I thought. And the women who confronted him in the elevator were more effective than all the Judiciary Committee put together.

  111. 111

    @Litany: Dear Mr. Nym-I’ve-Never-Seen-Before, your ideas intriguing to me and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter.

    Lemme guess, somewhere in the pile of ill-informed bullshit your spouting, there’s gotta be a purity pony somewhere…

  112. 112
    Litany says:

    @ruemar: That’s rich coming from the deep thinker who just called me “a sack of mucilage” because they wrongly assumed I was voting Green or something.

    “In that survey, Schaffner found that 12 percent of people who voted in the primary and reported voting for Sanders also voted in November and reported voting for Trump…Based on data from the 2008 Cooperative Campaign Analysis Project, a YouGov survey that also interviewed respondents multiple times during the campaign, 24 percent of people who supported Clinton in the primary as of March 2008 then reported voting for McCain in the general election.”

    @MisterForkbeard: re: Manchin. The guy votes with Trump 60% of the time. Where do we draw the line between “lesser evil” and “just evil?” I’m sure there’s a pet project of his we could hold over his head to get him to the table; if not, I question just how far right Democrats will let other Democrats go without doing anything. Part of the problem is that people (rightly) believe the party doesn’t stand firm on its convictions.

    Comey is perhaps not the best example, but he’s certainly been on MSNBC several times now to play softball and talk about how terrible the pres is. His book was likewise called “important” and “a fascinating look at a conflicted figure” and all sorts of other incredibly inaccurate things. He sold 600,000 copies in the first week; do you think it was the Deplorables forking over the cash? Comey’s rehabilitation is beginning, and I believe he’ll continue to make a lucrative career supported by liberals who buy his books and tune in to regularly catch him on TV. Call me a pessimist, but the writing is on the wall: within my lifetime Democrats will BEG for an FBI director as apolitical as Comey, and fervently cite him as precedent of why the Republicans should not do some terrible thing they then go ahead and glibly do anyways.

    Perhaps a better example would be all the Dems reflecting back fondly on the era of Bill Clinton as if he didn’t gut welfare and massively expand the war on drugs (not to mention probably commit several rapes based on the standards of belief we use today). The disappointing centrist of today will be the aspirational leftist of tomorrow!

  113. 113
    Litany says:

    @Sister Golden Bear: Ooooo, is this Mean Girls? I’ll be Cady if you’ll be Regina!

    In all seriousness, I respect Cole et. all and do enjoy (if you can call it that) the stories curated here. I’ve read the blog for a little while and not had much to say, but as of late my frustration with the Ds has boiled over. I agree that the Republicans are wannabe-authoritarians with very little respect for due process, the last half century of hard-fought gains in civil rights, etc; I just also happen to think that Democrats are an entirely ineffectual opposition party that’s fucking up their job on a monumental scale. I’ve gotten pretty bitter writing these comments and said some dumb stuff, but I still hold that anyone who seriously expected the FBI to ride in and save the day is still hopelessly naive about how the game is played today.

  114. 114
    Chris Johnson says:

    @J R in WV: Vote him in AND yell at him in restaraunts?

    There’s got to be some way to get across the concept of ‘this is why you’re getting tolerated for now’. The situation of being presented with only horrible alternatives is really bad, and not new. I think it’s just become unbearable over some issues and the concern is, how do you not make that a self-own (because that can be weaponized, and is). Maybe ‘vote and yell at in public’ will work…

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