Tuesday Morning Open Thread

Also from Catherine Rampell, in the Washington Post“Trump’s narrative is nonsense. So why is the media buying it?”:

Yes, Democrats can walk and chew gum at the same time. The problem right now is that all anyone ever asks about is the gum-chewing…

There have been a lot of other issues — kitchen table issues, you might even say — that Democrats have also been pursuing, and to which pundits like me haven’t given sufficient time or attention. Many of the proposals are good, some are bad; but, in any case, it’s hard to argue that Democrats have been underinvesting in policy because they’re overinvesting in oversight…

One major bill addresses drug costs (by banning pay-for-delay generic prescription agreements) and repeals Trump’s expansion of junk insurance plans (which often don’t cover preexisting conditions). Another bill attempts to narrow the gender pay gap. Another would require the United States to remain in the Paris climate accord, while another reauthorizes the Violence Against Women Act.

Still another is a sweeping anti-corruption and election integrity measure. That may not exactly be a “kitchen table” issue, but it should theoretically appeal to all those Trumpkins who say they want to drain the swamp.

Again, these bills have all already passed the House. The reason they remain bills, rather than enacted legislation, is not that they’re being crowded out by Democrats’ supposedly all-consuming impeachment agenda. It’s that the Republican-controlled Senate refuses to take them up.

And Trump himself is not exactly trying to move the ball forward, including on issues with opportunities for bipartisan consensus. Such as, oh, infrastructure — which, as you might recall, was the subject of the meeting Trump stormed out of last week, for his preplanned news conference on how Democrats supposedly only cared about investigating the president.

Which is to say: If anyone is too laser-focused on the threat of impeachment, it ain’t the Democrats. It’s the object of that potential impeachment, aided and abetted by a media he manages so masterfully.






134 replies
  1. 1
    NotMax says:

    Presume WaPo spiked their insightful exposé, “Water: Wet or Myth?” for this.

  2. 2
    Baud says:

    aided and abetted by a media he manages so masterfully.

    It’s more of a partnership.

    ETA: The judges will also accept “axis.”

  3. 3
    Mary G says:

    Somewhere today I read that Twitler’s tweets aren’t getting as much attention as they were. Then I read that four out of four election experts say he’ll win a second term next year.

    It is freaking exhausting.

  4. 4
    NotMax says:

    @Baud

    The dial on that amplifier goes to 69.

    ;)

  5. 5
    Betty Cracker says:

    Just read Rampell’s column this morning and was happy to see some internal push-back on the shitty coverage, including crap pieces published by The Post. In a column entitled “The Press Must Do Better,” Never-Trumper Jennifer Rubin offers a jackal-worthy critique of media hackery:

    The New York Times gives prominent placement on its home page to list all of President Trump’s juvenile nicknames for the 2020 Democratic presidential candidates, including the racist Native American slur directed at Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.). This serves no purpose other than to highlight his name-calling and reinforce his abusive conduct.

    Meanwhile, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders goes on “Meet the Press” to repeatedly accuse former FBI director James B. Comey of treason. She insists everyone knows about corruption at the top levels of the Justice Department. (“We already know that there was an outrageous amount of corruption that took place at the FBI.”) She claims “they” leaked information and lied. (Who? What information? When?) In an apparent reference to two investigators who were removed from the case (Peter Strzok and Lisa Page) after communicating about their private views, she insists “They were specifically working trying to take down the president, trying to hurt the president.” Sanders falsely insists the FBI was guilty of “unprecedented obstruction and corruption.”

    Trump’s press secretary is not challenged on her exaggerations, distortions and outright lies, although she in essence concedes Trump has already made up his mind, issued his verdict and is expecting the attorney general to come back with evidence.

    Good for her. Rubin has done excellent work in the Trump era calling out “conservative” Trump toadies and inept/corrupt media coverage. Recognizing that in no way excuses her past shilling for various deadly neocon projects or implies faith that she’ll treat Democrats fairly in the future. But credit where credit is due.

    Haberman was dragged mercilessly over the weekend on Twitter for her puff piece the “existential” crisis faced by Trump flunky Hope Whats-her-face, said crisis precipitated by a subpoena, the compliance with which is not optional for mere mortals. Haberman’s dragging is also a good thing.

    For all the (correct! righteous!) complaints about Twitter’s exaggerated influence and false assumptions that the various bubbles that reside on the platform represent vox populi, there is a group that takes it seriously: Beltway journalists. It’s good to see a platform that is abused in the service of an authoritarian wannabe used to call out his enablers.

  6. 6
    daveNYC says:

    Trump does have good instincts for self-promotion and manipulating the media, but it’s not like the media is chock full of intellectual giants with strong wills. Every Fahrenthold out there is vastly outnumbered by people who just want something to fill out their column inches with minimal effort.

  7. 7
    Baud says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    I hope you’re right. Sometimes I think they purposely instigate the Twitter rage as a marketing tool. It’s not like we’ve seen reforms as a result.

  8. 8
    NotMax says:

    @Betty Cracker

    there is a group that takes it seriously: Beltway journalists

    Which is not a point in their favor. It’s a failing, it’s shortcut reporting. It’s not developing a story, it’s finger painting by numbers.

  9. 9
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Baud: It’s a partnership in the way a dog on a leash is a partner.

  10. 10
    Baud says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    Whatever it is, it’s not unique to Trump though. The media carried Bush’s water too.

    Besides love of money, I think the media and Republicans are culturally united in their contempt for liberal Democrats.

  11. 11
    satby says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    there is a group that takes it themselves seriously: Beltway journalists

    Fixed that for you.
    @Baud: nope no reforms, no improvement in critical, reason based reporting.
    @OzarkHillbilly: pretty much this.
    Has the grim satisfaction of reading Rampell and Rubin been worth the costs of the abdication of good journalism that occurred in 2015-16? No.

  12. 12
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Baud: I think the Republicans have learned how to play the media and DEMs should take a lesson or 3, starting with calling out their uncritical quoting of Republican BS at every opportunity the same way the Repubs screamed about “liberal bias.”

  13. 13
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    Florida appoints first chief science officer to take on climate crisis

    To say Dr Tom Frazer faces a daunting workload as he begins his new job as Florida’s first chief science officer would be an underestimation. From the increasing risk of ever stronger Atlantic hurricanes, toxic algae blooms that have inundated the state’s beaches and inland waterways, and rising sea levels that threaten to leave Florida underwater by the end of the century, the challenges appear immense.

    But where many see a five-alarm climate emergency laying siege to his state, Frazer, with a measured approach honed from more than three decades’ experience of working in environmental science, sees only opportunity.

    “It’s a very exciting time in the state of Florida,” he said in an interview with the Guardian and several local reporters as he assumed the role created by the new Republican governor, Ron DeSantis, soon after he took office in January.

    “Exciting”…. Well that’s one way to put it. Another would be “interesting”. All I can say is “Good Luck” Dr. Tom, speaking science to Republicans is going to be a frustrating existence and quite possibly a fruitless endeavor..

  14. 14
    NotMax says:

    While they may not be everyone’s cup o’ [insert liquid of choice], was tickled to find both of Michel Hazanavicius’ leisurely send-ups of spy films available on the Popcornflix channel (via Roku in my case).

    In order, OSS 117: Cairo, Nest of Spies and OSS 117: Lost in Rio.

  15. 15
    Baud says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    They GOP has been doing it since at least Nixon. We should do it to, but it’s certainly not a fix that will made overnight.

  16. 16
    rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone 😄😄😄

  17. 17
    Betty Cracker says:

    @satby: I’m trying to remember exactly when “the abdication of good journalism” occurred. I can’t remember Beltway coverage being anything but garbage since my high school days, back when the pundits were lionizing that addled fraud Ronald Reagan. It probably sucked before then too; I just don’t have any direct memory of it.

  18. 18
    Raven says:

    I had no idea BJ people felt this way about the meeeeeedddiiiiiiiiaaaaaaaaa, what a shock.

  19. 19
    Betty Cracker says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: DeSantis despises fellow Republican and former governor Rick Scott, and in a way, I think we Floridians are benefiting a tiny bit from DeSantis’s Trump-like urge to negate anything Scott did.

  20. 20
    NotMax says:

    @Betty Cracker

    Corner was turned about the time Uncle Wally retired. It’s been a glide path of slouching towards Network since, well, Network.

  21. 21
    Baud says:

    @rikyrah:

    Good morning.

  22. 22
    Baud says:

    @Raven:

    We should talk about football instead.

  23. 23
    NotMax says:

    @Baud

    Ugh. Yuck. Gag. Retch.

  24. 24
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Baud: There are no fixes. The press is at best a blunt instrument. The best one can hope for is to push it in a direction somewhat favorable to oneself today. Tomorrow it begins again.

    Seeing as facts have a liberal bias, I’ll settle for them reporting facts.

  25. 25
    raven says:

    @Baud: Yea, that would be interesting too. Maybe someone could explain that it’s dangerous.

  26. 26
    germy says:

    Was there ever a Golden Age of journalism?

    A few years ago I read Robert Benchley’s collection of essays: “The Wayward Press” and the same bullshit we see today was happening 100 years ago.

  27. 27
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Baud: Which one?

  28. 28
    Raven says:

    @germy: Oh no, this is all brand new.

  29. 29
    satby says:

    @rikyrah: Good morning rikyrah 🌞!

    @OzarkHillbilly: the problem with reporting facts is the lack of consensus on the veracity of “facts”. Or “science” or anything. Mocking the propaganda channel isn’t fun anymore, its accomplished its aim of undermining the social compact.

  30. 30
    Baud says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    I think a large part of the problem is structural. Mainstream media faces competition from the right but not from the left. To the extent there are competitors on the left, a good number of them are just as anti-Democratic as the NYT or even Fox.

    I’m not sure there ever was a golden age of journalism, but I think there was a time when it had more gravitas because there was some sense of accountability for being unreliable. I don’t think that exists now, at least for people like us. We’re told to just accept it.

    I call the NYT garbage not because I have hope that it’ll change. It’s because I want our people to understand that we can’t rely on them when they report on domestic politics.

  31. 31
    Betty Cracker says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: “Working the refs” is important and necessary work, IMO. It rarely moves the needle appreciably, but if everyone succumbed to terminal cynicism about the media and gave up pushing back, nothing would stop the acceleration of this hell-bound hand basket.

  32. 32
    gene108 says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    I think the Republicans have learned how to play the media and DEMs should take a lesson or 3,

    Republicans don’t play the media. Their billionaire enablers bought their own media outlets, like the “American Spectator”, “Washington Times”, radio stations that solely promote right-wing view points, etc. These all influenced the MSM well before Fox News, and basically drove the MSM’s coverage of Whitewater.

    Unfortunately, no so-called liberal billionaire is willing to lose $100 million a year on their own newspapers, magazines, etc., in order to push the liberal agenda.

  33. 33
    debbie says:

    @Baud:

    I think the more accurate verb in that sentence would be “plays.”

  34. 34
    debbie says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    Why hasn’t there been a front-page article on our nicknames for Trump? Equal time and all.

  35. 35
    Betty Cracker says:

    @gene108: Bingo. For Republican oligarchs, propping up wingnut media outlets is an investment that pays off hugely when their political beneficiaries make policy. Philanthropist-driven journalism for civic good rather than personal enrichment isn’t a sustainable business model, though it has produced some decent work, notably ProPublica.

  36. 36
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @satby:

    the lack of consensus on the veracity of “facts”

    Global climate change is a fact, there is a scientific consensus on it, even fossil fuel industries agree, hence the efforts by them and their GOP handmaidens to suppress the fact of it.

    Abortion saves women’s lives and improves their health. These are facts, hence the efforts of the GOP in service to their religious overlords the Evangelicals and the CC to make it all about the “baby”.

  37. 37
    gene108 says:

    @germy:

    Pre-radio, the print media press was openly partisans. When government decided to regulate airwaves as a public good, some level of objectivity was forced on radio and later TV media outlets.

    I think this forced objectivity is what helped people think the media was unbiased

  38. 38
    NotMax says:

    @gene108

    All hidebound institutions (the ‘traditional’ MSM as only an example in the media sphere) retreat to conservatism. The degree and extent varies, yes., short take is that it is both comfortable and demonstrably profitable, at least in the tunnel vision of the bookkeepers and shareholders. Brisk competition (as oppose to media consolidation) can temper the tide.

  39. 39
    debbie says:

    @gene108:

    Having read about the lead-up to WWII (including subversive efforts by England to sway public opinion), I can say that while there may be “points of light” of objectivity from time to time, media as a whole has been just as biased as the public.

  40. 40
    satby says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: to you and I there’s a consensus on those facts. To about 1/3 of the country there isn’t.
    They also believe Trump has done a great job and made America respected in the world again, because their media tells them so.
    When the John Birchers were a fringe group they were ignorable, now their descendants are a voting block.

  41. 41
    gene108 says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    Given the great lengths Republicans have gone to, in order to control the media, command the narrative on patriotism, etc., I am a bit amused about the fact they are not in control of everything, like they want to be.

  42. 42
    NotMax says:

    @germy

    I think this forced objectivity is what helped people think the media was unbiased.

    Unbiased may be too charged a term. More perceived as credible intermediaries between the sources and the public. Not to say there were not glaring exceptions and institutional bias.

  43. 43
    satby says:

    @debbie: bias isn’t exactly the problem, you can account for some bias. Outright enabling of lies is the problem.

  44. 44
    SFAW says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    “Working the refs” is important and necessary work, IMO. It rarely moves the needle appreciably

    Not any single act thereof. But it’s what the RWMFs have been doing for 40 or so years, and it started bearing fruit (apologies for the semi-mixed metaphor, Steve) 20 years ago, and its effect has only grown.

    Part of the problem with Americans trying to “work the refs” back in the other direction — “Americans” being defined as non-RWMFs — is that the RWMFs perpetual sense of grievance and victimhood was a pretty strong motivator, and helped them keep the pressure on. Plus, having extremely wealthy RWMFs who can and will keep pouring $$$ in (Scaife, Murdoch, etc.), and whose agenda includes destroying the middle class (at least partly via destroying unions) helps them. Outside of trillionaire George Soros (based on how he’s the go-to piggybank in every RWMF screech, so he MUST have trillions) and Tom Steyer, there aren’t too many on America’s side.

    It’s a worthy cause, and we should get started on it right-fucking-now. But figuring out a cohesive strategy? That’s the hard part, of course. If I thought I could handle it — and if I had the $$$ — I’d try to find a way to get the ball rolling myself. But frankly, I expect it will take longer than whatever time I have left in this plane of existence. [No, nothing wrong, it’s just that I’m old.]

  45. 45
    debbie says:

    @satby:

    Enabling has also always been there too. Republican Derangement Syndrome began with Clinton’s election and what used to be considered fringe views have worked their way into becoming party policy.

  46. 46

    @Mary G:

    I read that four out of four election experts say he’ll win a second term next year.

    Cripes. That’s terrifying.

  47. 47
    NotMax says:

    @SFAW

    Stanching the hemorrhaging of opinion into news would be a productive step.

    As would be the 24/7 pressure to Publish Now!, although I fear that a lost battle.

  48. 48
    germy says:

    This video illustrates the Hack Gap

    This one idea – the hack gap – explains how and why conservative nonsense dominates American politics. pic.twitter.com/A3NVVkxCt6— Vox (@voxdotcom) May 26, 2019

  49. 49
    germy says:

    @NotMax: And the intense competition TV networks feel to be The First To Announce The Winner Of The Presidential Election.

  50. 50
    Baud says:

    @Mary G:

    If they said Trump would lose, you wouldn’t have heard about it.

  51. 51
    NotMax says:

    @germy

    Dewey wins!

    :)

  52. 52
    germy says:

    @NotMax: “According to our projections, Bush has beaten Kerry with 15% of the votes counted”

  53. 53
    germy says:

    @gene108:

    Given the great lengths Republicans have gone to, in order to control the media, command the narrative on patriotism, etc., I am a bit amused about the fact they are not in control of everything, like they want to be.

    Well, that’s where their innate incompetence kicks in.

  54. 54
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @satby:

    To about 1/3 of the country there isn’t

    Which goes back to what I said:

    starting with calling out their uncritical quoting of Republican BS at every opportunity

    Will it fix the problem? No. There is no “fix”. But as @Betty Cracker: said,

    “Working the refs” is important and necessary work, IMO. It rarely moves the needle appreciably, but if everyone succumbed to terminal cynicism about the media and gave up pushing back, nothing would stop the acceleration of this hell-bound hand basket.

    We aren’t going to reach the FOX crowd but we don’t need to, we need to reach everybody else.

  55. 55
    satby says:

    @debbie: way before Clinton.
    I had started a comment about how it started after Goldwater’s defeat, when conservatives regrouped and started founding their own think tanks to lay the groundwork for their alternative reality. But it’s all available on Wikipedia. We forget it’s been going on longer than some jackals have been alive.

  56. 56
    germy says:

    @Baud:

    If they said Trump would lose, you wouldn’t have heard about it.

    “Dog Bites Man” (page 19)

    “Man Bites Dog” (front page in large, bold headline)

  57. 57
    Baud says:

    @germy:

    To be fair, a man biting a dog would be pretty interesting copy.

    I’d root for the dog in that scenario.

  58. 58
    NotMax says:

    @OzarkHillbilly
    Goes hand in glove with not only calling out FOX as an agitprop operation but also putting on the record every example of same until the sheer weight of evidence becomes overwhelming and, with both luck and circumstance, peels away audience like layers from an onion. Expecting that audience to voluntarily migrate is not realistic; their deserting is a small victory.

  59. 59
    germy says:

    @Baud: Turns out it’s the Iowa State Fair, and Biden is posing with a corn dog.

  60. 60
    Baud says:

    Brazilian fishermen are better informed than a Fox News viewer, or elected Republicans.

    A battery-powered radio may be his principal connection to the outside world, but Cruz knows about global warming.

    “Nature is upset. … In Antarctica, it’s melting, nature is melting,” he said. “People, you have to have some awareness about what is happening. It’s clear what is happening.”

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-brazil-environment-mangrove-forest/brazils-mangroves-on-the-front-line-of-climate-change-idUSKCN1SY13S

  61. 61
    Baud says:

    @germy:

    Still rooting for the dog.

  62. 62
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @SFAW:

    [No, nothing wrong, it’s just that I’m old.]

    You left out “cranky and sarcastic”.

  63. 63
    Immanentize says:

    You think the media is bad? My clutch is failing and I’m at the garage learning the cost ….

    Have a nice Tuesday, All.

  64. 64
    NotMax says:

    @germy

    Still remembered anecdote from journalism classes long, long ago (channel numbers made up for the sake of flow).

    News editor at channel 5 to reporter (angrily): How come the flames on Channel 8’s film of the orphanage fire were so much higher than what you and your crew shot?

    Reporter: But on our footage, the nuns were crying.

  65. 65
    satby says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: it’s not about reaching the Fox crowd; it is about reaching everybody else. Especially the disaffected who don’t vote at all. I consider it a holistic issue, how do you heal a body (politic, in this case) when it has a continuous IV drip of poison being infused at the same time? I don’t really have any answers, but we don’t have 60 years to figure it out.

  66. 66
    Baud says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    He said “old.”

  67. 67
    satby says:

    @NotMax: yeah, along the lines of where I was going.

  68. 68
    NotMax says:

    @germy

    “Mom, is that this year’s butter sculpture?”

    “No dear, that’s Joe Biden.”

  69. 69
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @germy:

    Biden is posing with a corn dog.

    Why in the world would Biden have his picture taken with Chuck Grassley?

  70. 70
    satby says:

    Well, on that cheery note, I have to get going.
    Looks like things were bad in Ohio last night @debbie: !

  71. 71

    @germy: Great video. Thanks for the link. I retweeted.

  72. 72
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Baud: Yeah, I guess “cranky and sarcastic” would have been a little repetitive.

  73. 73
    NotMax says:

    @germy

    Two things both highly overrated and providing the barest of sustenance.

  74. 74
    MomSense says:

    @satby:

    Same as it ever was. Horse and Sparrow economics was popular in the late 1880s and 90s. At least that term was a little more honest about the nature of supply side economics.

  75. 75
    NotMax says:

    @MomSense

    McKinley. Harding. Coolidge. Hoover.

    ’nuff said.

  76. 76
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor:

    Yes. Every “savvy” person I know says the same thing. It’s depressing.

  77. 77
    zhena gogolia says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    All of them male, of course.

  78. 78
    donnah says:

    @satby:

    We had two tornadoes touch down near us in Dayton overnight. We took our cats to the basement after 10:30 when the sirens went off. We didn’t suffer damage at our house, but just a few miles from us there was a lot of damage. A high school, sports arena, strip mall, homes, all took major hits. North of us, in Celina, homes and farms were devasted.

    It was scarier because it was nighttime and and we couldn’t see what was happening, but with the light of day, it’s overwhelming. Extensive and devastating to see.

    We’re just glad that no one was killed. And we’re glad it missed us.

  79. 79
    Baud says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    Trump is a risk free way for supposedly liberal men to exercise dominance over morally decent women.

    “I, of course, would never vote for him, but he’s going to win anyway.”

  80. 80

    @donnah: PSA: I learned this from my Iowa neighbors. Make sure you have shoes in the basement or wherever you go to shelter from a tornado. If one hits, there will be debris everywhere you step.

  81. 81
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @Immanentize: I’m sorry that your son won’t be able to go to college after all

  82. 82
    Baud says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor:

    Man, having to get dressed for tornadoes sounds like an awful way to live.

  83. 83

    @Baud: Just shoes! It’s a Cole like plan.

  84. 84
    NotMax says:

    @Immanentize

    Last time had to have a clutch replaced it was $1200. That was thirty years ago. Shudder to imagine what it sets one back today.

    Also took over six weeks, but that’s another story.

  85. 85
    Eunicecycle says:

    @donnah: My daughter lives in Beavercreek and it sounds like she was very lucky to have escaped. She works at Wright Patterson and says they are having everyone go out and help clear the flight lines.

  86. 86
    Chief Oshkosh says:

    @germy: Waugh’s “Scoop” comes to mind

  87. 87
    donnah says:

    @Eunicecycle:

    My cousin lives in Beavercreek and he said their house was shaking, but didn’t get hit. The local news is on it’s twelfth hour of coverage and the live photos coming in are heartbreaking. Lots and lots of homes and businesses were ripped up.

    We’re used to bad storms here in this area; we’re at the end of Tornado Alley. But this hit close to home, and it happened in the dark. It was not a good night.

  88. 88
    grandmaBear says:

    We live near Beavercreek and yes, the damage looks pretty extensive, though we missed it ourselves. There’s a boil water order in Montgomery County (Dayton), electricity out fairly widely, lots of school closures and trees down. The grandkids are staying safely at home today.

  89. 89
    SFAW says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    You left out “cranky and sarcastic”.

    I had to leave something for the riff-raff you to comment on, didn’t I?

    And besides, crankiness and sarcasticity will probably prolong my life, which is what the original comment referred to, wise guy.

    NPR tells me that the flood waters are a-risin’ in Missouri — not a worry for you, right? (If I remember correctly)

  90. 90
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Baud:

    That’s what it feels like. And I’ve had even women tell me that Warren is too shrill.

  91. 91
    SFAW says:

    @Immanentize:

    You think the media is bad? My clutch is failing and I’m at the garage learning the cost ….

    Does the garage have an AED they can use on you?

  92. 92
    NotMax says:

    @SFAW

    I fully expect to run out of life long before I run out of sarcasm. And my family, on both sides, is very long-lived.

    :)

  93. 93

    @Immanentize: It’s a sign of something bad that I read “clutch” and thought it referred to eggs until I read “garage” and had to rethink.

  94. 94
    Betty Cracker says:

    @donnah: Scary! Glad you and yours are okay and that you had enough warning to get to a safe place.

  95. 95
    germy says:

    @Chief Oshkosh:

    Waugh’s “Scoop” comes to mind

    I’ve never read it but it sounds interesting.

  96. 96
    SFAW says:

    @NotMax:

    I fully expect to run out of life long before I run out of sarcasm.

    Oh, thank FSM! I was concerned you’d turn into one of those touchy-feely types, like Ozark.

  97. 97
    Betty Cracker says:

    @zhena gogolia: The good news is the savvy folks who are predicting a Trump win are likely using models that worked in past elections, which are probably garbage. IMO, while it’s true that Trump is no aberration but rather the logical progression of the Republican Party’s downward spiral into in-your-face bigotry and oligarch-service, he is a uniquely unpopular president, and the election will be a referendum on him. I vacillate between being amazed that a third of the country still supports such an embarrassing cocksplat and marveling that someone who is lucky enough to preside over an unearned economic run of good luck can’t break 50% approval.

  98. 98
    donnah says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    Thanks! I never have heard such weird-sounding thunder. It had a strange timbre, like a metallic sound, and it was crackling-sounding. Very scary and also nonstop lightning to make it all a very wild night.

    I know a lot of people in our area are stunned by the damage. We have a lot of cleaning up to do. I’m glad no one was killed and that the number of injured is low.

  99. 99
    tokyokie says:

    @SFAW:

    Does the garage have an AED they can use on you?

    It’s a car repair place. They’ll just use jumper cables.

  100. 100
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @SFAW: Only if I have to drive north of the Missouri or east of the Mississippi. In the short term anyway. Good thing I got my tractor parts last week because 94 is closed in both directions. MODOT doesn’t say whether Dutzow is accessible or not.

    ETA they are calling for bad storms tonight, big thunder boomers, large hail, and possible tornadoes. Interesting times.

  101. 101
    Immanentize says:

    Ugh.
    Probably 3 days (which means the week).
    2000 plus.
    I had the clutch replaced (maybe, who knows, it’s inside the engine?) at the dealer only 40k miles ago. I don’t drive a lot and I don’t drive hard. This car is going to Texas with the Immp, so I really need to get it good shape.

  102. 102
    Immanentize says:

    @Betty Cracker:
    Many people stick with their decision. They really don’t want to be wrong about such an important thing as President. I hope that, given a reasonable alternative, many people will let go of their prior decision. It’s a do over!.

    But that is where the media will work overtime to make the alternative not reasonable.

  103. 103
    raven says:

    The clutch is between the engine and transmission. What kind of car?

  104. 104
    NotMax says:

    @raven

    In so many cases it means hoisting out the entire engine, though.

  105. 105
    SFAW says:

    @tokyokie:

    It’s a car repair place. They’ll just use jumper cables.

    Good thought, but I don’t think 12 volts will do much, other than maybe induce a burn.

  106. 106
    SFAW says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    OK, glad to hear you’re safe. I’ll keep my fingers crossed that it continues that way.

    Tractor? Do you sing the theme from “Green Acres” when you’re out plowing the back 40?

  107. 107
    raven says:

    @NotMax: Which is why I asked because if its has a timing belt they should check the mileage on that and replace it and the water pump.

  108. 108

    @SFAW:

    Do you sing the theme from “Green Acres” when you’re out plowing the back 40?

    Doesn’t everyone?

  109. 109
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Immanentize:

    I had the clutch replaced (maybe, who knows, it’s inside the engine?) at the dealer only 40k miles ago.

    It’s been a while but that seems short to me. Either somebody is driving with their foot on the clutch or they are starting in 1st gear badly. I think. Again it’s been awhile.

    For the record, the clutch is between the engine and the transmission, contained in the bell housing.

  110. 110
    Betty says:

    @Betty Cracker: The Regan era certainly deserves special mention. Although there was bad journalism before, there was some balance. It mostly all seems so bad now with the Bigs. Ted Kennedy warned that media consolidation would lead to this. He was right.

  111. 111
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @NotMax: Or dropping the tranny, which I think is more common.

  112. 112
    NotMax says:

    @raven

    Do they even use belts anymore? Thought it was all timing chains now, so that when they let go they take the whole mishegas with them.

  113. 113
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @SFAW: Sadly, it’s just a lawn tractor. I could use a larger one around here but I can’t justify the cost. :(

  114. 114
    SFAW says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA:

    Doesn’t everyone?

    Well, in the People’s Republic of Massachusetts it’s usually frowned upon.

    And, were I to attempt it … well, suffice it to say that my singing voice has been outlawed by the Geneva Convention.

  115. 115
    raven says:

    @NotMax: Now is the operative phrase.

  116. 116
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @NotMax: Timing belts are much cheaper to make and install on the assembly line so most/all are going that way. Besides they have the added advantage of lasting only half as long.

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  118. 118
    SFAW says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    Sadly, it’s just a lawn tractor. I could use a larger one around here but I can’t justify the cost. :(

    Get a bigger lawn. Followed by “Honey, all the people in the know say that, to cut a yard this size properly, I need at least a 50-horse Deere (or Kubota or New Holland).”

    ETA: Let me know if that works, so I can try it on Mrs. SFAW.

  119. 119
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Raven: Duh… I wasn’t even thinking front wheel drive. Always having had a p/u and having replaced a half dozen or more clutches over the years that was my default thinking.

  120. 120
    NotMax says:

    @SFAW

    Can’t speak up to date but the Sears riding mower convinced the landlady to get to replace the huge honking John Deere that died does a much better job and runs rings around the Deere. Mulches like a champ. Much quieter too, a plus for the driver (me).

    What used to take three or more hours with the Deere gets done in two with the Craftsman.

  121. 121
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @SFAW: If I told Mrs OHB we needed a bigger boat… I mean tractor, she’d just say “OK.” I’m the cheap SOB in this household.

  122. 122
    MomSense says:

    @OzarkHillbilly

    Factor driving in Boston into your equation.

  123. 123
    Chyron HR says:

    @Immanentize:

    One hopes that at least some of the progressives who were convinced that letting Trump win would bring about Medicare for All will know better next time.

  124. 124
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @MomSense: I’m sure it can’t be any worse than driving in STL, which is where I was living when I replaced all those clutches. Again, memory being what it is, and my memory being what it is…

  125. 125
    SFAW says:

    @NotMax:
    I understand, but it ain’t about getting the work done quicker.

  126. 126
    Olivia says:

    It’s not hard to imagine that just as trump has damaging information about members of congress that he holds over their heads to ensure support, he also has damaging information on various key media (not Fox) employees so that “adjustments” can be made to stories that are published.

  127. 127
    SFAW says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    I’m the cheap SOB in this household.

    “Frugal.” As am I.

    But given the right circumstances, that can be overcome.

  128. 128
  129. 129
    Neldob says:

    The consolidation of media is an issue too. Was it the right wing NYT that ran an article on Murdoch shmoozing with Raygun to ease restrictions? This ‘easing of restrictions’, a little here and a little there over and over has been going on for half a century.

  130. 130
    PJ says:

    @satby: There’s an interesting book that came out a few years ago, Democracy in Chains, by Nancy MacLean, about how the modern conservative movement was jump-started by Brown vs. Board of Education, when the wealthy (Mellon Scaife, the Kochs) saw how libertarian political thought could use racism as a way to leverage oligarchic control of government.

  131. 131
    Gelfling 545 says:

    @germy: I saw the play Front Page, written, I believe, in the 30s. It’s a comedy but one of the damned scariest I’ve ever seen. The portrayal of the press is chilling and believed to be based on actual figures from Chicago.

  132. 132
    Katdip says:

    @satby: the top line tweet is something we need to be shouting from the rooftops. The demonization of government has been a deliberate right wing strategy since Goldwater. Of course it’s duplicitous- they know people like government programs (ag, Medicare part d, military contracts), but they will lie unendingly about the evils of welfare dependency and benefits to “those people”. Dems and the press should ignore reacting to the outrageous right-wing meme of the day (remember, these are well coordinated!) and focus on what people need and want.

  133. 133
    JustRuss says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Yeah, 40K seems really short for a clutch. We replaced the clutch in our Ford Escort at about 110K, and that included teaching our daughter how to drive, which tends to be hard on the clutch, and our Honda is still going at 130K.

  134. 134
    debbie says:

    @donnah:

    You’re long gone, but glad to read you’re okay. I was down in the basement until 12:15 am, but there was no damage around my little neighborhood (that I’ve seen). Beaver Creek sounds like it was catastrophic and almost a miracle there were no fatalities.

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