Thursday Morning Open Thread: Tick… Tick… Tick

(Drew Sheneman via GoComics.com)
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148 replies
  1. 1
    NotMax says:

    Several disparate items which caught the eye.

    1) Shocked, shocked. Newly installed AG Barr’s fingers in this pie?

    Aaron Schock, the former Republican congressman from Peoria battling public corruption charges since 2016, claimed a rare and stunning victory Wednesday, striking a deal that will likely end the case with no conviction — but an embarrassing loss for federal prosecutors.
    [snip]
    Schock’s downfall started with sensational stories about a gaudy congressional office redecoration that quickly snowballed after investigative stories in the Chicago Sun-Times and other news outlets questioned spending from campaign and government accounts.
    [snip]
    Schock reached a deal with prosecutors here to put his case on hold for six months, during which he is required to meet certain conditions and remain under court supervision. If he does so, the charges against him will be dropped.

    Primarily, he must pay $67,956 back to his campaign committees and pay outstanding taxes due from the years 2010 through 2015. He also admitted, on the record, that he sought reimbursement for mileage without documentation that led to reimbursements “that exceeded the number of miles actually driven.”

    He also admitted he took tickets he’d landed at face value, for events like the World Series and the Super Bowl, and resold them for a profit.

    By doing so, he made $42,375 that he did not report on his federal income tax returns for the six years he spent in office. The exact amount of the tax liability still has to be determined. Ironically, Schock served on the powerful tax-writing Ways and Means Committee.

    Secondly, the campaign committee Schock for Congress pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor revolving around the lack of documentation for Schock’s mileage reimbursements. Kennelly ordered the committee to pay a $26,000 fine. An attorney representing the campaign fund was in court on Wednesday.
    [snip]
    The Justice Department did not reply to a request for comment. Source

    2) Give the headline writer a cookie. No, make that two cookies.

    Breaking up is hard to do: Asteroids are stronger, harder to destroy than previously thought

    3) For the Death Be Not Proud file.
    >Billionaire diamond trader Ehud Arye Laniado, 65, dies during penis enlargement surgery that triggered ‘heart attack’ at Paris clinic

  2. 2
    rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone 😄😄😄

  3. 3
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    Finally! ;-)

    Eta: Blech.

  4. 4
    NotMax says:

    Sigh. Apparently in moderation. Liberation, please?

  5. 5
    Raven says:

    @NotMax: Liberation by who? You know “those” people aren’t around this time of day

  6. 6
    A Ghost To Most says:

    So much winning. I haven’t had this much fun since the pigs ran off with my brother.

  7. 7
    NotMax says:

    @Raven

    Anne L. commented downstairs like 10 minutes ago.

  8. 8
    MagdaInBlack says:

    Accuweather tells me -2 high today….balmy Chicago.

  9. 9
    NotMax says:

    Shall try again, removing the third story, which was about a billionaire dying during a schlong enlargement procedure.

    Several disparate items which caught the eye.

    1) Shocked, shocked. Newly installed AG Barr’s fingers in this pie?

    Aaron Schock, the former Republican congressman from Peoria battling public corruption charges since 2016, claimed a rare and stunning victory Wednesday, striking a deal that will likely end the case with no conviction — but an embarrassing loss for federal prosecutors.
    [snip]
    Schock’s downfall started with sensational stories about a gaudy congressional office redecoration that quickly snowballed after investigative stories in the Chicago Sun-Times and other news outlets questioned spending from campaign and government accounts.
    [snip]
    Schock reached a deal with prosecutors here to put his case on hold for six months, during which he is required to meet certain conditions and remain under court supervision. If he does so, the charges against him will be dropped.

    Primarily, he must pay $67,956 back to his campaign committees and pay outstanding taxes due from the years 2010 through 2015. He also admitted, on the record, that he sought reimbursement for mileage without documentation that led to reimbursements “that exceeded the number of miles actually driven.”

    He also admitted he took tickets he’d landed at face value, for events like the World Series and the Super Bowl, and resold them for a profit.

    By doing so, he made $42,375 that he did not report on his federal income tax returns for the six years he spent in office. The exact amount of the tax liability still has to be determined. Ironically, Schock served on the powerful tax-writing Ways and Means Committee.

    Secondly, the campaign committee Schock for Congress pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor revolving around the lack of documentation for Schock’s mileage reimbursements. Kennelly ordered the committee to pay a $26,000 fine. An attorney representing the campaign fund was in court on Wednesday.
    [snip]
    The Justice Department did not reply to a request for comment. Source

    2) Give the headline writer a cookie. No, make that two cookies.

    Breaking up is hard to do: Asteroids are stronger, harder to destroy than previously thought

  10. 10
    swiftfox says:

    “Doubt he’s the nominee?” Hogan? Kasick? Stassen? Paulsen?

  11. 11
    Baud says:

    @rikyrah: Good morning.

  12. 12
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @MagdaInBlack: High of 26! Smokin’! I might have to take a dip in Lake Michigan to cool off if the lake isn’t too hot as well.

  13. 13
    Baud says:

    @swiftfox: Yeah what’s he smoking?

  14. 14
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @MagdaInBlack: We’ll see 60s tomorrow.

  15. 15
    mrmoshpotato says:

    Hats off to the cartoonist for including the crotch-fondling necktie even though the fat bastard not knowing how to properly dress annoys the hell out of me.

  16. 16
    NotMax says:

    @swiftfox

    And you knew who you were then,
    Girls were girls and men were men,
    Mister, we could use a man like Harold Stassen again

    :)

  17. 17
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @NotMax: Too soon for Barr to have had any real influence on that down in the weeds result. Far more likely it is due to the trump appointed US Attorney who got approval/direction for this arrangement from trump appointed higher ups in the DOJ..

  18. 18
    MagdaInBlack says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:
    😐 Up to 6 above on Sunday.
    Also, DST starts Sunday? WTF.

  19. 19
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @MagdaInBlack: Heatwave!

    Also, DST starts Sunday? WTF.

    Really? So not ready for that.

  20. 20
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @MagdaInBlack: Sympathies on the big chill. After a dusting of snow overnight, Denver is expecting sun and mid-50s today. The mountains continue to get pounded. It is common this year to stand in the sun in our yard, and look west at the clouds of a snowstorm cranking less than five miles away.

  21. 21
    raven says:

    @NotMax: I am waiting-ting-ting oh yea oh yea. . .

  22. 22
    NotMax says:

    @MagdaInBlack

    Good. Never can get used to Maddow’s show starting at 4 in the afternoon instead of at 3.

  23. 23
    MagdaInBlack says:

    @A Ghost To Most:
    I was in once Denver on business in April….2004 maybe…they had 3 inches of snow and were driving like it was 12 ….and it was gone by noon.
    They explained the weather patterns to me, as I had assumed snow was nbd in Denver.

  24. 24
    satby says:

    @MagdaInBlack: you’re reading that temp in Centigrade, because it’s going to be 29° F as a high.
    I’m with you on DST starting so early, but as I remember after the eqinox in 11 days, it seems to speed up to longer days faster.
    I love the longer summer days of living in the north.

  25. 25
    Baud says:

    46 out of 165

    Economic development deals in which Texas changed once-finalized contracts for companies receiving tax breaks — usually to lower the number of jobs they were required to create. These type of renegotiations are rarely made public.

  26. 26
    NotMax says:

    It’s likely the verboten p word within the link itself which triggered FYWP above, so a snippet sans link.

    A billionaire diamond trader has died during a penis enlargement operation at a posh Parisian clinic, it was reported.
    [snip]
    According to local media, complications during surgery proved fatal for the Belgian-Israeli dual national and he suffered a heart attack when a substance was injected into his penis.

    The billionaire, whose exact fortune is not publicly known, got in trouble with the authorities in 2013.

    He faced a claim for £4 billion from the Belgian authorities for tax evasion on diamonds illegally imported from Congo and Angola, Belgium’s GVA reported.

    Laniado reportedly prevented a tax evasion trial by agreeing to pay £137.7m.

    However, as the Belgian customs office suspected him of lying or giving incomplete information about some of the diamonds imported from Angola and Congo, they still claimed £4 billion as well as a £1.7 million fine.

    Even though two courts dismissed the Belgian customs office’s claim, an appeals court ordered a new trial with Laniado due to appear in court on 14th March. Source

  27. 27
    Cermet says:

    @satby: Unlike the long summer days in the Southern hemisphere and with their very mild winters.
    I’d say good morning but any time the orange fart cloud is still clown in chief and our country keeps taking massive hits, is just not a good morning.

  28. 28
    MagdaInBlack says:

    @satby:
    OFFS 😄
    Thank you!
    I feel much better now ☺️ 29 is shirtsleeve weather.
    Accuweather regularly resets that for me and I flip out every time.

  29. 29
    Immanentize says:

    Good morning All.

    I heard Lindsey Graham on NPR a day back and he may believe he is going to be the next VP candidate. I think he might be right — I could totally see Trump dumping Pence.

  30. 30
    satby says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: there was some prosecutor misconduct that led to the case being reassigned to the Chicago office too. But it’s unusual that he faces no time in prison at all.

  31. 31
    Cermet says:

    @NotMax: Wow, almost like Karma exists …:)

    Now only if pence and the fart cloud had similar luck than it would be a wonderful morning.

  32. 32
    Immanentize says:

    12 degrees here in the Hub.

  33. 33
    satby says:

    @Cermet: I’m sure I would love the Southern Hemisphere summers just as much… But this is where I live, so this is what I got.

  34. 34
    Immanentize says:

    @NotMax:
    Not dead — just fled (with a new face and bigger uh, package)

  35. 35
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @MagdaInBlack:
    After growing up outside Buffalo, I do consider winter here NBD. Snow comes and goes quickly, and strong western winds in winter are warm (Chinooks).

    The winters are nice; the summers are heaven.

  36. 36
    satby says:

    @MagdaInBlack: South Bend has the exact same weather about two hours later 😉😆

  37. 37
    drdavechemist says:

    @satby: From a couple weeks before to a couple weeks after the equinox is when the gain of daylight is fastest-something in the range of 3-5 minutes per day in the northern half of the continental US. Derivatives of sinusoidal functions are easy and useful.

  38. 38
    ola azul says:

    Had our semi-annual donnybrook here recent where alla gear groups (seiners, gillnetters and trollers) wrangle over fish and money and turf. Fish-politics. Not without drama, innits way, but prolly not of much interest generally.

    Of note, tho, was the fascinating presentation that a woman (and I kept thinking as she was talking, what a cool fucking job!) gave re: innovations in humpback forage predation.

    You mighta heard of humpback bubble feeding before, generally targeting herring or krill. One whale will descend 20 fathoms or more underneath a mass of herring (or, recently released hatchery fingerling salmon, which were the impetus for her talk to such as we about the guzzling of our little darlings) and blow bubbles whilst making a circular ascent that permits the forage to be trapped within the curtain of bubbles. Diameter on surface about a hunnerd feet.

    The bubbles disorient and condense the forage and forms a barrier in the water column that acts very much like a seine net, only far more ingenious and elegant. Once the bubbling whale has packed the forage into a balled mass near the surface, alla rest of the whales who ain’t on bubbling-duty ascend from depth into center mass with maws gaping, filling their gullets. It’s a not uncommon sight if yer on the water a bit in these parts, and it’s spectacular — mos def worth the drive to Frankenmuth as we usedta ironical-like sez in Michigan.

    But whales been bubble feeding for time immemorial — what’s new? Humpbacks got really long flukes, up to a 1/3 of their body length. The scientist showed aerial footage of whales using their pectorals in new ways.

    Underside a humpback’s flukes is white. As they ascend to the surface, the newest thing the kids is doing these days is using their flukes when bubble feeding by showing the white undersides inna flukes-forward fashion (imagine a whale oriented vertically surging surfaceward, flukes out inna “I love you man!” baitfish-sweeping bear-hug). Specially if it’s sunny, theory goes, the white undersides reflect light and the darkness of their cavernous mouths looks (oh-so-deceptively) like the escape hatch but that way lies doom. Or lunch. Perspectives depending.

    Video if innerested.

  39. 39
    satby says:

    @drdavechemist: damn, math in the morning AGAIN?

  40. 40
    JPL says:

    @Immanentize: Oh no! What would the evangelicals who love Pence say? This is the article in the SC paper.. link

    Also, mother would be sad.

  41. 41
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Baud: Just finished reading this at ProPublica:

    Residents Say Natural Gas Production Is Marring West Virginia. And the Legislature Isn’t Doing Anything About It.

    Though studies recommended additional protections years ago, lawmakers have not taken action to put them in place. But when residents sued, a Supreme Court justice said it was the Legislature’s job.

    A couple of choice quotes:

    West Virginia Delegate Terri Sypolt says she understands how natural gas drilling has changed the look and feel of communities in the state, bringing an influx of noisy truck traffic and construction………………

    So when she returned to Charleston for this year’s legislative session, she introduced a bill for the third consecutive year to monitor the air and noise around drilling operations, hoping her colleagues would take action to help residents. The bill didn’t make it onto a committee agenda, let alone to the floor of the House of Delegates.

    Delegate Barbara Fleischauer, a Democrat from Monongalia County, in the northern part of the state, sponsored legislation this year to increase the distance between drilling and homes. But even early in the session, she gave it little chance of passing and said she’s now focused on legislation that would protect women from discrimination and unequal pay…………………………………..

    She’s introduced similar bills every year since 2015, but they’ve never made it out of the House of Delegates Energy Committee. “You’re the first person to ask me about it,” she told a reporter in January.

    Delegate Mike Pushkin, a Democrat from Kanawha County, sponsored legislation to protect surface owners from 2015 to 2017, but he didn’t bother this year.

    “I’m more kind of on bills that I feel like I can get support for and get passed,” he said. “I feel like the current climate of the Legislature — sometimes those of us who come down on the side of property rights and come down on the side of protecting the environment, air, water, land — a lot of times, these days we find ourselves playing defense.”

    But Delegate Bill Anderson, who chairs the House Energy Committee and sets the agenda, said there’s no “appetite” for the bills. “Well, they’re not as high on my priority list as some other bills,” said Anderson, a Republican from Wood County.
    …………………………………………………..
    “I don’t think the industry is insensitive to the needs of the people in the community,” he said, “but people in the community need to understand the needs of the industry, if we’re going to have the benefits in terms of jobs.”

    This legislative session, Anderson’s committee moved along bills he co-sponsored that are favored by oil and gas organizations because they would make it easier and cheaper to drill. One would allow companies to drill horizontal deep wells close together. Another would remove the severance tax on low-producing oil and gas wells. The bills passed out of Anderson’s committee and are pending in other committees now.

  42. 42
    satby says:

    This is good news:

    © J. Scott Applewhite / AP Congress Census
    Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross’s decision to add a citizenship question to the 2020 Census violates the Administrative Procedure Act and the Enumeration Clause, a federal judge ruled on Tuesday. Judge Richard Seeborg of the Northern District of California ruled that the question was “quite effective at depressing self-response rates among immigrants and noncitizens, and poses a significant risk of distorting the apportionment of congressional representation among the states.”
    “In short, the inclusion of the citizenship question on the 2020 Census threatens the very foundation of our democratic system,” Seeborg wrote in his decision.

  43. 43
    debbie says:

    @Immanentize:

    I think the evangelicals would rebel, so no way.

  44. 44
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @satby:

    But it’s unusual that he faces no time in prison at all.

    In my experience it is not unusual at all for the rich and the well connected.

  45. 45
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @satby: I was told there would be no math.

  46. 46
    Baud says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    People are awful. We should get industry an emotional support animal.

  47. 47
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @Baud:
    Colorado is currently considering sweeping new regs for gas and oil operations. Having a house explode from gas in abandoned flow lines, killing two, opened a lot of eyes.

  48. 48
    ola azul says:

    Well, *that* was embarrassing. In all instances where flukes was idiotically used, pectoral fins was intended.

    Ugh. Sweet gift a sleep prolly a good idea.

  49. 49
    Baud says:

    I generally like Vox, but they have such a hard on for Bernie. Reminds me a little of The Guardian in that respect.

  50. 50
    debbie says:

    @A Ghost To Most:

    You’d have thought combustible tap water would have changed things in Tennessee, but no.

  51. 51
    Baud says:

    @debbie:

    Why do liberals hate self-making tea?

  52. 52
    SFAW says:

    @Cermet:

    Now only if pence and the fart cloud had similar luck

    Do they have strong-enough microscopes in ORs these days? Because if not, then Dickless-in-Chief is pretty much stuck with what little he has.

    And the needle might be too large for it/him anyway.

  53. 53
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @satby: Some people.

  54. 54
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Baud: The oil and gas industries already have plenty of emotional support wells, now they need emotional support animals too???

  55. 55
    Anne Laurie says:

    @swiftfox: Houle’s been saying for a while that Trump won’t make it as far as next November, so probably Pence.

  56. 56
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Baud: My *BS* filter generally allows me to avoid all that.

  57. 57
  58. 58
    TS (the original) says:

    @Immanentize: Hard to believe anyone could be more obsequious towards trump than Pence, although Lindsay Graham has been working hard to meet that job requirement

  59. 59

    @Anne Laurie: What? Remove a guy like this? You’re joking.

    Trump today: "Human trafficking is a disaster. Nobody knew too much about it until recently. It's been going on for a million years, actually. It's been going on for a long time. But we've seen it. We've spotted it."— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) March 7, 2019

  60. 60
    Ohio Mom says:

    @drdavechemist: I’ve heard this before, Ohio Dad, the math nerd, tries explaining this to me on occasion. It’s a cute pointless exercise.

  61. 61
    TS (the original) says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    In my experience it is not unusual at all for the rich and the well connected.

    If they are republicans? trump supporters? From the link

    SCHOCK, BLAGOJEVICH, JACKSON
    Schock’s public corruption case is ending up with reimbursement payments and no criminal charges against him.
    Former Gov. Rod Blagojevich is serving 14 years in a federal prison in a corruption case where he was never charged with taking a dime.
    Former Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., D-Ill., with good time, served 23 months for looting $750,000 from his campaign funds in a scheme with his former wife, the ex-Ald. Sandi Jackson, who was sentenced to a year and a day. The two pled guilty in August 2013.

  62. 62
    Ohio Mom says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: I wonder what is older, walls or trafficking. Or wheels.

  63. 63
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @TS (the original): IOKIYAR is a well known construct with more than a little truth behind it but $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ is neither D nor R.

  64. 64
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Ohio Mom: Which came first, the chicken or the egg?

  65. 65
    rikyrah says:

    RespectMyGame 💅🏽 (@battletested5) Tweeted:
    If you on twitter carrying water for Fox News, same network that embraced the racist birther lie, vilified black and brown people, protected hosts who are sexual offenders and now protecting a corrupt president and his family then we all see what you REALLY support https://twitter.com/battletested5/status/1103641518978543617?s=17

  66. 66
    evodevo says:

    @Ohio Mom: “Trafficking”, by a wide margin – if you count taking females from a neighboring hostile tribe and making them slaves/wives…ask any anthropologist…they’re still doing this in Amazonia.

  67. 67
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @debbie:
    Pennsyltucky as well.

    On the plus side, windmills are becoming as common as oil/gas rigs out in the flats here.

  68. 68
    Citizen_X says:

    @NotMax:

    Our findings, however, show that asteroids are stronger than we used to think and require more energy to be completely shattered

    Oh, I know where this is going. This is how the Death Star started.

  69. 69
    rikyrah says:

    Charles P. Pierce (@CharlesPPierce) Tweeted:
    I don’t care if they have Edward R. Murrow warming up in the bullpen. Fox News is the propaganda arm of a criminal presidency and the sooner everybody realizes that their pals are complicit, too, the better. https://t.co/afNZeqWA8I https://twitter.com/CharlesPPierce/status/1103472436530548736?s=17

  70. 70
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @evodevo: Some would observe that the practice encouraged genetic diversity.

  71. 71
    Aleta says:

    So even more media attacks on women in Congress for balance?

  72. 72
    rikyrah says:

    👏👏👏

    Zerlina Maxwell (@ZerlinaMaxwell) Tweeted:
    REP. LAUREN UNDERWOOD IS WILDLY UNDERRATED. She is a superstar and I hope the media catches on.

    https://t.co/9j21dLZfJh https://twitter.com/ZerlinaMaxwell/status/1103398442657898496?s=17

  73. 73
  74. 74
    Ken says:

    @satby: Math’s OK, but the Sheneman cartoon gets into philosophy. Spot-on illustration of the concept, though – I wonder if the cartoon could be added to the Wikipedia article?

  75. 75
    Another Scott says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I heard on the radio recently, don’t recall where, that a chicken can be regarded as a vessel for chicken gene reproduction. I.e. it’s the genes that matter, not the egg nor the chicken.

    It’s a kinda mechanistic way to look at it, but …

    Cheers,
    Scott.

  76. 76
    mapaghimagsik says:

    @A Ghost To Most: California says, “Pull my finger”

  77. 77
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Raven: Believe it or not, I have never seen ‘Stripes’. It is a huge gaping hole in my education that I have long known I need to rectify.

  78. 78

    @rikyrah: Some days the best act of resistance I commit is to change all the TVs in the gym from Fox to CNN. I have to be early enough that no one else is around.

  79. 79

    @Citizen_X: At my writers group last night, someone compared slang in a fantasy ms we were critting to Firefly. I’m pretty sure I was the only one who got the reference, but it made me smile. It was shiny.

  80. 80
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Another Scott:

    I.e. it’s the genes that matter, not the egg nor the chicken.

    You want to provoke a spittleflecked screamfest nuclear war? Mention that childless people are failed gene lines. Get’s them going every time.

  81. 81
    Another Scott says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Hey!!

    ;-)

    Cheers,
    Scott.

  82. 82
    Kay says:

    @rikyrah:

    There’s no requirement that the Democratic Party patronize the Fox News corporation or their multi-millionaire tv hosts.

    We’re not obligated to contribute to their profit picture for the quarter. These DEMANDS that we patronize this business entity are amusing, I must say. They’re a business, and 90% of their business model involves attacking liberal ideas and Democratic politicians. That’s how they make their money and make no mistake, they make a LOT of fucking money, including the huge pay packages for the 5 or 6 tv hosts at the tippy top. The idea that the Democratic Party has some “First Amendment” obligation to contribute financially to this business is ludicrous. I have no obligation to financially support Fox news hosts and to insist I do and cover that with this veneer of “supporting free speech” is just embarrassing. They’re not irreplaceable or singular or unique.

  83. 83
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    That poll explains what was going on at that wierd speech Trump made at CPAC – the way Trump was just rambling like a crazy old man and the crowd was eating it up like it was Obama level speechying. And the forced laughter at Trump’s lame ass jokes. Those were all the Trump courtiers trying to convince themselves the party isn’t ending.

  84. 84
    Wapiti says:

    @evodevo: That made me think of Sacagawea, stolen from her people at 12 and eventually sold to a French-Canadian trapper.

  85. 85
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @rikyrah: Nielson is a total….

  86. 86
    Patricia Kayden says:

    I have a feeling that Trump believes that if he commits crimes in public, he’ll be immune to prosecution. Hence the incriminating tweets and blatant lies. In his mind, he’s way above the law. Can’t wait for his world to come crashing down and may he take the entire GOP with him.

  87. 87
    rikyrah says:

    Dan Rather (@DanRather) Tweeted:
    A suggestion: for every article, report, or cable news segment on Democratic “extremism” do one on the GOP’s undermining of voting rights, climate change denial, stance on gun violence, policy of child separation, attacks on NATO, or just plain false equivalence. https://twitter.com/DanRather/status/1103456526436491264?s=17

  88. 88
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Another Scott: :-) :-) :-) :-) :-) :-) :-) :-)

  89. 89
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    Pobrecito:

    The far-right speaker Milo Yiannopoulos has been warned he could be denied an Australian visa due to an unpaid $50,000 bill he owes Victoria police for policing his events, and his own comments that he is a “troll” who “gets off … when people are yelling in the streets”.

    Despite claims, including from the One Nation senator Pauline Hanson, that Yiannopoulos had been banned entirely by Australia – the letter, published by the Australian, only says the Department of Home Affairs is considering denying his visa.

    Yiannopoulos most recently toured Australia in 2017, and was even hosted in Parliament House as he conducted a series of speaking engagements around the country. And just last week he appeared via video link on the ABC’s Q&A program asking a question.

    But the department wrote on Tuesday it was considering rejecting his latest application on the grounds of “the character test” – and has given Yiannopoulos 28 days to respond.

    The nerve! Insisting people pay their bills before they incur more debt.

  90. 90
    Kay says:

    @rikyrah:

    Fox News is a business up until they want the cover of some “public interest” – then they pull out the sanctimonious scolding on “the marketplace of ideas”

    They’re really planning on yelling at an organization who chooses not to patronize their low quality, garbage company? These free marketeers are insisting they have some God given RIGHT to a contract from the Democratic Party? It goes further than that! They’re insisting specific cable tv hosts must be given a job conducting a debate, and wrapping themselves in the First Amendment while promoting the interests of their employer and their own careers.

  91. 91
    Amir Khalid says:

    @NotMax:
    Why do these guys want a bigger donk, anyways? To show it off to their homies?

  92. 92
    Betty Cracker says:

    @ola azul: Amazing video!

  93. 93
    bemused says:

    I read the links to pieces on dentist who addresses trump as “King”. Aside from trumpers sticking with the orange lunatic due to racism and losing white entitlement status, etc., they are all corrupt grifters.

  94. 94
    Kathleen says:

    @NotMax: How about Roman Hruska?

  95. 95
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @Patricia Kayden: It’s happening as we speak. We just need to keep together, and keep our shit together, and behold the destruction of T and the VRWC that is occurring.

    So much winning.

  96. 96
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @NotMax: I still miss my Tom Lehrer album. Do the lyrics hold up after 50+ years?,

  97. 97
    chopper says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor:

    it was the invention of duct tape 5 years back that made human trafficking really grow. before then you couldn’t find something to put over the mouths of women in the back of cars, which are also a new invention.

  98. 98
    bemused says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    Nielsen and the horrible Laura Ingraham could be sisters.

  99. 99
    RAVEN says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: It’s pretty dumb but it has a few keeper moments.

  100. 100
    zhena gogolia says:

    I was so heartened by the clips of all these fierce, intelligent representatives (mostly women) grilling Nielsen yesterday. It’s the only thing that gives me hope. We must get the Senate too.

  101. 101
  102. 102

    @chopper: Sometimes Trump’s fantasy life is made embarrassingly public.

  103. 103
    zhena gogolia says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    For anybody who missed it yesterday, follow this thread and watch the videos:

    https://twitter.com/atrupar/status/1103335110051594240

  104. 104
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @A Ghost To Most: Lehrers? Definitely. National Brotherhood Week has new relevance in the age of trump and Pollution definitely applies in many cities around the world even if not so much here.

  105. 105
    O. Felix Culpa says:

    @rikyrah: I agree with the tweet’s sentiment, but who (or what) is it referring to?

  106. 106
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I may see if they are available for download. Lehrer informed my early teens views.

  107. 107

    Open thread and it’s World Book Day. Chicago area jackals, on Saturday, the Wauconda library is having a local author fair from 11-2. I’ll be there. If you’re free, I’d love to meet you.

  108. 108
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @JPL:

    Also, mother would be sad.

    You sure of that? This article makes it sound like she wasn’t zackly thrilled by the prospect of becoming the Bride Of VPOTUS.

  109. 109
    Kay says:

    In 2004 John Kerry’s campaign bought ad time on what is a wingnut local radio station. I don’t know if they knew how bad the local station anchors were, probably not, but the fact is this station’s business model is horrible- snarky sort of dumb male anchors interspersing Right wing rants with leering commentary on various female celebrities.
    When the Kerry ads would play, the hosts would talk over the content, jeering at Kerry.
    Do Democrats have some obligation to continue to purchase time on this radio station? No, they do not. They are insane if they do. They would be literally donating to their political opponents business venture.

  110. 110
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @mapaghimagsik: We got gas issues, you got electrical transmission issues. I’d still take either over most states, although I never enjoyed Bay Area weather.

  111. 111
    RAVEN says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: Ah, Bangs Lake!

  112. 112
    Kay says:

    Kelly is on a full-fledged “restore my reputation” marketing campaign.

    Mr. Kelly tells us, through the NYTimes (of course) that he didn’t work for “Donald Trump”. No, instead he was doing his civic duty and he would have worked for Hillary Clinton were she the President.
    Unfuckingbelievable. These elites are actually going to attempt to rewrite their roles in this. They can’t be permitted to succeed.
    You know, back in the day they had the decency to wait a couple of years before reinventing their records. Now they start immediately after the crime(s).
    I have more respect for Cohen. At least he owns his role in this.

  113. 113

    @RAVEN: I had to google that, but apparently yes. My first association was with Black Panther.

  114. 114
    rikyrah says:

    @O. Felix Culpa:

    @rikyrah: I agree with the tweet’s sentiment, but who (or what) is it referring to?

    Those clowns in the media who are trying to ‘tut tut’ the Democrats for saying no way to Fox hosting a Primary debate.

  115. 115
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @A Ghost To Most: For what it’s worth, you can find most of them on youtube.

  116. 116
    Kay says:

    Jordan Fabian
    ‏Verified account
    @Jordanfabian
    28m28 minutes ago
    More
    “Mr. Kelly, who left at the end of December, also made clear he did not consider himself working for Mr. Trump, but doing his civic duty to serve. If Hillary Clinton had won, he said, he probably would have worked for her as well”

    OTOH, maybe it’s a good sign for accountability/prosecution that Kelly is making this big marketing effort to convince us he didn’t work for Donald Trump :)

    Trump? Oh, he got coffee sometimes. I know for a fact he wasn’t on the Trump Administration payroll. Donald Trump really didn’t play much of a role in the Trump Administration, if you put it in historical context.

  117. 117
    lollipopguild says:

    @A Ghost To Most: So many of his songs sound like they were written since 2016.

  118. 118
    Kay says:

    @rikyrah:

    Chris Wallace is unique and irreplaceable. A SINGULAR talent. There can be no worthwhile presidential debate without the Fox news millionaires at the helm. Don’t think of Fox like a business. Think of Fox as the First Amendment, personified.

  119. 119
  120. 120
    bemused says:

    @Kay:

    I won’t ever forget that Kelly was Nielsen’s mentor and he lobbied hard for Nielsen to get DHS job. Kelly also said of immigrant children taken from their parents, “the children will be taken care of-put in foster care or whatever”. The whatever turned out to be cages. Kelly and Nielsen are stone cold soul mates.

  121. 121
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @lollipopguild: I can’t help but wonder what he would write if he were alive today. Or maybe his piano would just collapse in a smoking heap.

  122. 122
    rikyrah says:

    @Kay:

    Mr. Kelly tells us, through the NYTimes (of course) that he didn’t work for “Donald Trump”. No, instead he was doing his civic duty and he would have worked for Hillary Clinton were she the President.

    I’ll say it for the bleacher seats:

    JOHN KELLY AIN’T SHYT.

  123. 123
    rikyrah says:

    @bemused:

    I won’t ever forget that Kelly was Nielsen’s mentor and he lobbied hard for Nielsen to get DHS job. Kelly also said of immigrant children taken from their parents, “the children will be taken care of-put in foster care or whatever”.

    OR WHATEVER…..

    That sentence should be quoted back to him at every interview he even attempts to do.

    John.Kelly.AIN’T.SHYT!

  124. 124
    rikyrah says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    I was so heartened by the clips of all these fierce, intelligent representatives (mostly women) grilling Nielsen yesterday. It’s the only thing that gives me hope. We must get the Senate too.

    The women were indeed on point.

    And, yes, we have to get the Senate.

  125. 125
    Kay says:

    @bemused:

    I wonder what he wants. A prestigious job? Or maybe just distancing himself for purely selfish reasons- how he likes to think of himself- A Patriot, throwing himself on the sword. Like Comey. The egos on these people- my, my.

    I can’t get over how he lied so boldly about that member of congress. That blew me away. It made me think he’s deranged and …racist. It put him in the “unfit” category for me. I thought it was a firing-level offense. I wouldn’t keep an employee who told such a huge malicious lie about another person in a work context. It’s disqualifying.

  126. 126
    O. Felix Culpa says:

    @rikyrah: Thank you for the clarification. I’ve been out of the loop the past couple days. And yes, anyone who advocates for Fox is an evil clown. But I repeat myself.

  127. 127
    StringOnAStick says:

    @A Ghost To Most: Did you have a look at all the various avalanche videos taken earlier this week? Looks like another round of significant snow hits on Friday so there will be more, and right now I-70 and Berthoud Pass are closed.

  128. 128
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kay:

    Or maybe just distancing himself for purely selfish reasons- how he likes to think of himself-

    It always comes down to ego.

  129. 129
    Ixnay says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: The Copenhagen Concert from 65 is wonderful, filmed in luscious B & W, Tom just effortless in his singing and playing. All the classics. “While we’re attacking frontally, watch Brinkely and Huntely describing contrapuntally the cities we have lost. No need for you to miss a minute of the agonizing holocaust.” Genius.

  130. 130
    plato says:

    @Kay:

    A simple & straightforward test to know if you are a racist.

    Did you work or want to work for the totus thug?

    Fuck the army types who were peddled as saviors even here. They never are and never were anywhere around the world.

  131. 131
    Aleta says:

    @bemused: I’m still stunned at Nielson’s lie:

    There was no parent who has been deported to my knowledge without multiple opportunities to take their children with them.

  132. 132
    Mary Ellen Sandahl says:

    @NotMax: I don’t kmow — seems like death conquered pride in that case.

  133. 133
    bemused says:

    @Kay:

    Kelly’s baldfaced about Rep. Wilson is just as unforgettable. I’m going with OzarkHillbilly that it comes down to ego. Kelly’s lie about Rep. Wilson was disproved and he didn’t deign to comment. Kelly, Nielsen and the whole damn cult think they are superior beings and teflon against criticism or consequences.

  134. 134
    TomatoQueen says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Mr Lehrer is still alive. Wiki has him as “retired” but he is certainly not dead. He’s just 90 years old. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tom_Lehrer

  135. 135
  136. 136

    @Kay: But he wrote a memo about Kushner not being deserving of a security clearance, so he is all good now, or so Vichy Times tell me.

  137. 137

    @bemused: Separating the children was his idea, one he spoke about publicly in early 2017 when he was the DHS secretary. At that time it was ignored by almost everyone and even on BJ we were singing hymnals to the generals who were going to save us.

  138. 138
    Karen says:

    @Patricia Kayden: That doesn’t make sense to me.

  139. 139
    bemused says:

    @schrodingers_cat:

    He needs to be relegated and ignored as much or more than George W Bush but Kelly is probably writing a book polishing his rep as we speak.

  140. 140
    bemused says:

    @bemused:

    Kelly relegated to the dust bin.

  141. 141
    MCA1 says:

    @rikyrah: Even some Democrats have mixed feelings about it, but IMHO for really misguided reasons, such as:

    1. If we don’t have our primary debates on Fox, we can’t reach out to that portion of the population/the Trump base we need to try to persuade over.

    First of all, fuck those people. They’re lost. But more practically speaking, by not allowing one of your debates to be dictated by Fox, you’re forcing their brainwashed masses to watch a neutral party speak the language of neutral parties to Democratic candidates if they want to see them. This will be dissonant to them, to hear things framed in a way that doesn’t presume evil motives on the part of the entire left, and to hear the name of the Democratic Party pronounced correctly. That’s good for these people. This is why my preference would have been for the Democrats to deny Fox the feed entirely, so their mob has to leave the bubble to see anything at all.

    2. We’ll be depicted as biased/they’ll complain about the mainstream as being too liberal/similar bullshit.

    No. They say that already. Start pushing back! The fact is that Fox News has become a wholly co-opted propaganda outlet, with its very own Lord Haw-Haw (Hannity), and is 100% complicit in the treachery threatening our democracy, and to an outsized degree responsible for the inability of Americans to even discuss the world on the same factual grounding these days. They’ve created zombies who are not just misinformed but living in a fully-fleshed alternate reality, and it’s killing American society. SOMEONE NEEDS TO START SAYING THIS, and pointing to the problem, or it’ll never get fixed. The pendulum has to be pushed back the other direction.

    3. What about Chris Wallace and Shep Smith?

    Blah blah blah. Fuck them. They know where they work, they could be at CNN or one of the networks in 10 minutes if they made some phone calls. They are fully complicit in all of Fox’s evils.

  142. 142
    Ben Cisco says:

    @MCA1: Outstanding comment. All day, every day, this.

  143. 143
    Gravenstone says:

    @Kay: We can let Wallace host, on the condition that he be chained to the exhumed body of his old man during the debate. They can act as co-hosts. A reminder of what an actual reporter, then news personality could be like.

  144. 144
    J R in WV says:

    @Aleta:

    @bemused: I’m still stunned at Nielson’s lie:

    There was no parent who has been deported to my knowledge without multiple opportunities to take their children with them.

    This may be true – Fraulein Nielson may have closed her eyes and put her hands over her ears whenever those parents were dragged away from their children, remaining ignorant of the execution of her command.

    Or, more likely, she — Fraulein Nielson — is a stone liar Nazi bitch.

  145. 145
    Gravenstone says:

    @Aleta: A long winded way of saying, ‘I don’t know nuthin’.

  146. 146
    J R in WV says:

    @MCA1:

    Great comment! Faux News is a propaganda arm of a group of people dedicated to ending Democracy as a way of life in today’s world. Frankly, I think the whole organization should be on trial for the sexual abuse condoned, indeed conducted, from the very top. Then shut down as a criminal enterprise.

    Certainly no Democratic candidates should participate in any Faux News broadcast, ever. Nor should Faux News be allowed to use any statements by Democratic candidates or spokespeople, since they take those statements apart to mis-characterize them and turn them on their heads.

  147. 147
    Aleta says:

    @ola azul: wow. Do you recall the name of the scientist who observed/thought about their use of light/dark ?

  148. 148
    Kathleen says:

    Yes! Genuflect genuflect genuflect.

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