Annals of the Horrible

Thought I’d share some (late) lunch joy by cleaning out a couple of browser tabs I’ve been meaning to share with the Jackaltariat.

First up in the catalogue of awful…

Nothing says more about a society than how it treats its most vulnerable.  Which is why this, from Pennsylvania coal country last month, says all you need to know about a certain kind of Republican* values:

Wyoming Valley West School District, one of the poorest districts in the state as measured by per-pupil spending, is located in a former coal mining community in Northeastern Pennsylvania, known affectionately by locals as “The Valley.”

When officials there noticed that families owed the district around $22,000 in breakfast and lunch debt…

…school council president Joseph Mazur thought that this would be a good next move:

…the now-infamous letter to about 40 families deemed to be the worst offenders in having overdue cafeteria bills — those were children with meal debt of $10 or more.

“Your child has been sent to school every day without money and without a breakfast and/or lunch,” said the letter signed by Joseph Muth, director of federal programs for the Wyoming Valley West School District. “This is a failure to provide your child with proper nutrition and you can be sent to Dependency Court for neglecting your child’s right to food. If you are taken to Dependency court, the result may be your child being removed from your home and placed in foster care.”

That this was about performative cruelty, and not fiscal prudence can be shown with two facts. The $22,ooo in arrears comes to about 1/4 of one percent of the district budget; you gotta know that if this was about keeping the school doors open, proposing a (surely) expensive round of child theft would not be the first move the financial folks would make.


Just to drive the point home, the guy behind the move, school council president Mazur went on to refuse an offer from a guy in Philadelphia who wanted to pay off the whole debt.  Mazur was eventually forced to reverse course.

Next up, an even more grotesque example of cruelty for cruelty’s sake from July.  I believe some commenters pointed out this incident, and I’ve been meaning to vent rage about it ever since, but here it is:

At a Border Patrol holding facility in El Paso, Texas, an agent told a Honduran family that one parent would be sent to Mexico while the other parent and their three children could stay in the United States, according to the family. The agent turned to the couple’s youngest daughter — 3-year-old Sofia, whom they call Sofi — and asked her to make a choice.

“The agent asked her who she wanted to go with, mom or dad,” her mother, Tania, told NPR through an interpreter. “And the girl, because she is more attached to me, she said mom. But when they started to take [my husband] away, the girl started to cry. The officer said, ‘You said [you want to go] with mom.’ “

 

I rate that child abuse, and those who did the crime should be in prison, as far as I am concerned. Een if the family separation followed the letter of the law, putting the kid in that position was gratuitous immiseration, and will deliver lasting trauma, doled out, it seems, for the agent’s amusement.

 

There is a word to describe such behavior and such people:  evil.  This was evil.  I say this as one with more memory of than current participation in organized religion, but it seems to me that those who welcome evil into our republic commit a grievous sin.

 

Happy lunch!  Open thread.

*Luzerne County, in which the relevant school district operates, went 58-39% for Trump in 2016.

 

Image: Pieter Breughel the Elder, The Massacre of the Innocentsc. 1565-7






208 replies
  1. 1
    lee says:

    Glad to hear the school official reversed his decision. I had not heard that from the news.

    “Jackaltariat” not sure if it has been used before, but I like the name.

  2. 2
    MattF says:

    It’s not cruelty— it’s discipline. Weakness is not permitted.

  3. 3
    JPL says:

    The treatment to a three year old caused such outrage in me, I had a meltdown. Enough with these assholes.

    Why oh why is Joe Kennedy running for Senate? I assumed he’d wait to see what happened to Warren’s seat.

  4. 4
    SFAW says:

    “Sofi’s choice”? Really?

  5. 5
    cmorenc says:

    I find myself hoping for karma to pay an unexpected visit to all those who “approve” of Trump’s immigration policies. Especially those who claim to be evangelical Christians who are willfully blind to Trump’s immigration policies being sharply contrary to everything Jesus taught or said in the New Testament, and instead are selfishly focused only on praise Jesus as their supposed ticket to Heaven instead of Hell.

  6. 6
    JPL says:

    @SFAW: You didn’t know that ? It was over a month ago and fortunately a doctor intervened and went to a higher up. I fear the child will suffer long term though.

  7. 7
    varmintito says:

    And I hope that karma is having an especially bad day when she gets to these motherfuckers.

  8. 8
    SFAW says:

    It has been said, more times than I can count (here as well as other blogs/places), that the Cruelty is the point. But recently I saw “the Fear is the point.” It’s somewhat depressing that those are only apparent options for this maladministration.

    Fuck Stephen Miller, I hope he he gets run over by a bus. Repeatedly.

  9. 9
    Jeffro says:

    Tom come on, don’t you remember when Jesus told the multitudes they’d better pony up and feed their kids, or else he was going to take them to Dependency Court and put the kids in foster care?

  10. 10
    JPL says:

    @JPL: I wanted to add that all though it’s not official, Kennedy did file with the FEC for a Senate run.

  11. 11
    SFAW says:

    @JPL:

    I had heard something in passing, but it kind of went by me. I can handle only so much gratuitous evil from these motherfuckers.

  12. 12
    rikyrah says:

    THE CRUELTY IS THE POINT…

    with all these muthaphuckas.

  13. 13
    rikyrah says:

    It’s official and confirmed, Iran’s FM Zarif is back in France at the G7. Macron had met Zarif only a few days ago. Zarif was suppose to be in China but came back. Backroom negotiations are now likely on a new Iran nuclear deal while Trump is still in town. Bolton must be livid! https://t.co/BYN3YdeQ7K

    — Bessma Momani (@b_momani) August 25, 2019

  14. 14
    rikyrah says:

    The neocons in Trump’s circle reveal their hand.

    They claim maximum pressure is aimed at getting a new round of negotiations.

    If that was true, they should’ve welcomed Macron inviting Zarif to #G7Biarritz.

    Instead, they’re enraged.
    BECAUSE THEY DON’T WANT TALKS.
    THEY WANT WAR. https://t.co/lN5z3v3slQ

    — Trita Parsi (@tparsi) August 25, 2019

  15. 15
    Litlebritdifrnt says:

    ICYMI this morning there was a 2.9 mag earthquake in the Blackpool area in North West England, right next door to Cuadrilla’s fracking site. It is the largest one thus far and according to the rules further fracking has been suspended temporarily. Normally there would be about 10 to 20 protesters at the Preston New Road site but today there were about 400. Even the area’s Conservative MP has called for it to banned after previously (natch) supporting it. Everyone is fed up and it doesn’t help that Cuadrila’s spokeweasle was just on my teevee lying his arse off.

  16. 16

    @rikyrah: I think an Iran deal is a good in itself, but if it’s also a poke in the eye for Trump, that’s even better.

    I love that they surprised him with this.

  17. 17
    laura says:

    @cmorenc: these Christian’s would line up for hours and pay to nail jesus to the cross if given half a chance.
    I cannot fathom the blowback from these last several years.

  18. 18
    TenguPhule says:

    Joe Arpaio announces a bid to get his old job back as an Arizona sheriff

    I hate this fucking timeline.

  19. 19
    Mike in NC says:

    Cruelty for the sake of cruelty is why Fat Bastard gets out of bed at 10:00 every morning.

  20. 20
    laura says:

    Hey, if I’m not mistaken, most/many states have laws that require family financial responsibility to avoid the costs of public charges. As retirees become indigent, their children and other relations will be responsible for their maintenance/housing and should anticipate letters similar to those school council president Mazur issued.
    George Carlin, still accurate re Owners of America.

  21. 21

    Conservatism is about maintaining existing hierarchies and preventing individuals from moving up or down within them. Punishing being poor, being trans*, being a refugee, it’s all with the same goal in mind, going back at least to Edmund Burke.

  22. 22
    TenguPhule says:

    @cmorenc:

    I find myself hoping for karma to pay an unexpected visit to all those who “approve” of Trump’s immigration policies. Especially those who claim to be evangelical Christians who are willfully blind to Trump’s immigration policies being sharply contrary to everything Jesus taught or said in the New Testament, and instead are selfishly focused only on praise Jesus as their supposed ticket to Heaven instead of Hell.

    When the gods wish to punish people, they give them what they want.

    These people want to live in a dog eat dog survival of the most ruthless world.

  23. 23
    rikyrah says:

    😒😒😒😒

    White lawmaker warns black attorney she may ‘go missing’ if Confederate statues are threatened https://t.co/hXotzcTZN7

    — Kenn-Do🌊🌊 🆘🇺🇸🚨 ☮☸♌ #ResistHarder 👊 (@sedakennedy) August 26, 2019

  24. 24
    Jay says:

    When immigration officials raided a series of food-processing plants in Mississippi on August 7 and arrested close to 700 suspected undocumented immigrants, it was clear that children were left behind without their parents. But, “If both parents were arrested, one parent was sent home within 24 hours,” a spokesman from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement told ABC News.

    Clearly, that did not happen in at least one case. Two children, ages 12 and 14, were left alone for eight days after both their parents were swept up in the raids. After authorities became aware of the situation, the children’s mother was released on August 15.

    Pedro, the children’s uncle, told ABC News that when his sister was taken into custody that she told the agents she had children. But both parents were detained anyway, leaving their children home alone. After days passed, she then told an ICE officer, who asked for the names and dates of birth of the children, which finally led to her release, Pedro said.

  25. 25
    germy says:

    @rikyrah: That’s a story from 2017. Where is he now? (Defeated, I hope.)

  26. 26
    Hoodie says:

    It gets used a lot around these parts, but I’m not sure “the cruelty is the point” fully describes this phenomenon, and I wonder if it can end up undermining anti-fascist arguments because it makes it look like everyone supporting Trump is being accused of being a sadist.

    Trumpism provides authority for people to inflict suffering on others when they otherwise might not do so. Trump’s entire schtick is suffused with descriptors like “strong” and “tough,” which give a whiff of legitimacy to the whole anti-immigrant enterprise, i.e., we have to be “strong” and “tough” to deal with serious problem of immigration and make America great again. With respect to immigration, for example, I’ve heard Trump supporters spout various deterrent theories cited as the basis for harsh actions, and justifications based on hyperbole like “we can’t take in everybody!” when the country can actually take in quite a number of people and even benefit from doing so.

    As the Milgram experiment indicated, a relatively large percentage (e.g., in the range of 60%) of people will inflict harm if they feel like that is what they are supposed to do to serve some greater purpose. However, that does not mean a comparable percentage of the population are sadists that get off on harming people. More accurately, authority desensitizes people to the suffering of others, i.e., their suffering becomes an abstraction due to being balanced against an equally abstract sense of some greater purpose that the authority is pursuing. This is even more so when harm is being inflicted on people you do not know.

  27. 27
    Leto says:

    The school debt issue was covered here locally and it went over about as well as a turd in a punch bowl. I know some people with kids over in that county and they were angry as hell. Mostly heard, “Yeah it sucks the parents can’t pay but you don’t punish the children.” This continual plan that the GooPers keep pushing (punish the “others” via their children) will always blowup in their face.

    And that poor child… I can only hope that when a Dem president takes office in Jan 2021, that one of their first acts is a top to bottom cleansing of DHS. Too many wannabe brown shirts. It needs to be rebuilt top to bottom.

  28. 28
    Miss Bianca says:

    @SFAW: The quote as I remember it was, “Fear is the point. Cruelty is the means”, or something to that effect. Stuck with me.

  29. 29
    AThornton says:

    @Hoodie:

    Interestingly the Obedience to Authority experiment was redone a couple of years ago in France and even the people who knew about Milgram’s work were manipulated by the situational context to go the full distance.

    Thus the Humanist claim of general human decency is total bullshit.

  30. 30
    TenguPhule says:

    @Hoodie:

    because it makes it look like everyone supporting Trump is being accused of being a sadist.

    Not sadists. Sociopaths.

  31. 31
    Lapassionara says:

    @laura: Yes. They are called “filial responsibility” laws, I believe.

    I wish this were more widely known. Middle-age people with both college-age children and aging parents could get caught in a real financial pinch, depending on which state they lived in. Another reason why SS and Medicare are so important.

  32. 32
    Jay says:

    “She had no friends or family to borrow money from—a condition referred to by social scientists as “network poverty”—and she knew her ability to keep the family sheltered depended on her monthly paycheck.”⁰https://t.co/0ijRyX37wP— Be A King (@BerniceKing) August 26, 2019

  33. 33
    Booger says:

    @Hoodie: Yeah, things are bad enough without citing Milgram. That study has been debunked nine ways to tuesday.

  34. 34
    mapaghimagsik says:

    Those heartland values in action (inaction). These assholes deserve a hurricane and the nuke.

  35. 35
    AThornton says:

    @Booger:

    Milgram’s findings have been replicated in a variety of cultures and most lead to the same conclusions as Milgram’s original study and in some cases see higher obedience rates.

  36. 36
    Ohio Mom says:

    We started serving school lunch after the World War II military had to turn too many malnourished men away. I’m guessing bow-legged from rickets was one of the typical conditions that sent would-be recruits home.

    Making sure the next generation of cannon fodder was properly nourished was seen as a matter of national security.

    I guess my point is, we were never feeding schoolchildren out of the goodness of our hearts. We can be a very ugly culture.

  37. 37
    NotMax says:

    Coal dust served to cover up an awful lot of red necks in that area.

    Luzerne County also includes the Shickshinny, which over the fuzzy P.A. speaker at the Scranton bus station sounded as if one the the stops the bus would make was Sh*t City.

  38. 38
    NotMax says:

    @NotMax

    Amended: the community of Shickshinny

  39. 39
    rikyrah says:

    @Hoodie:

    It gets used a lot around these parts, but I’m not sure “the cruelty is the point” fully describes this phenomenon, and I wonder if it can end up undermining anti-fascist arguments because it makes it look like everyone supporting Trump is being accused of being a sadist.

    Maybe, because they don’t seem to have a problem with sadism.
    What kills me about the story about the lunches is twofold:
    1. Muthaphuckas got an offer to pay off the ENTIRE DEBT, and had the nerve to turn it down. If it were JUST about the money, then they shouldn’t give two shyts WHERE the money comes from, just as long as they get paid.
    2. Threatening parents with SOCIAL SERVICES over a phucking school lunch debt?

    We keep on getting example upon example where they practice sadism, and when pointed out to the supporters, they come up with excuses for it.

  40. 40
    Miss Bianca says:

    @rikyrah:

    What kills me about the story about the lunches is twofold:
    1. Muthaphuckas got an offer to pay off the ENTIRE DEBT, and had the nerve to turn it down. If it were JUST about the money, then they shouldn’t give two shyts WHERE the money comes from, just as long as they get paid.
    2. Threatening parents with SOCIAL SERVICES over a phucking school lunch debt?

    Yeah, exactly. I don’t suppose the asshole actually got fired for this debacle. If there were any justice in the world, he’d be busted down to lunch lady and forced to face the prospect of feeding all those kids every day whose families he tried to shame.

  41. 41
    Mart says:

    Went 58-39% for Trump – they voted for Trump to hurt those other people, not them. Expect they will vote for Trump again, expecting him to get it right his 2’nd term.

  42. 42
    TenguPhule says:

    Speaking of horrible.

    In an opinion column for the New York Times, the Arkansas Republican Tom Cotton wrote: “After news leaked last week that President Trump had expressed interest in acquiring Greenland from Denmark, his critics predictably derided him as crazy. But once again, the president is crazy like a fox.

    “The acquisition of Greenland would secure vital strategic interests for the United States, economically benefit both us and Greenlanders, and would be in keeping with American – and Danish – diplomatic traditions.”

  43. 43
    Jay says:

    3 days before the biggest fires raged in the Amazon, federal prosecutors in Brazil warned the Ministry of the Environment that farmers and ranchers were planning to set fires to demonstrate their support for Bolsonaro's loosened environmental policies. https://t.co/3DPlsOahn2— Travis Waldron (@Travis_Waldron) August 26, 2019

  44. 44
    FlyingToaster says:

    Just an item to contrast from up here in the People’s Republic.

    A few years ago, the Boston Public Schools ran the numbers for “keeping track of free/pay lunches”. They were spending more on accounting than simply having lunch available for every kid. As in hundreds of thousands of dollars more than the costs of the additional lunches.

    So, now, Boston Public Schools breakfasts and lunches are free for all attendees. You’re not required to pay a damn thing. And BPS is saving money, to boot.

    The “fed free lunch” list is used instead to target kids to receive weekend backpacks of food.

    Fuck the cruel bastards who don’t see this as the example to emulate.

  45. 45
    TenguPhule says:

    @rikyrah:

    We keep on getting example upon example where they practice sadism

    Objection!

    That’s an insult to honest sadists.

  46. 46
    oatler. says:

    I’m surprised none of the progressive news sites I follow covered Trump’s speech at Biarritz. It had enough inflammatory stuff for sure.

  47. 47
    Jay says:

    A liberal activist in Portland infiltrated far-right group Patriot Prayer and shot footage of them planning an attack. Now it's about to be used against them in court.Remarkable story from @alex_zee:https://t.co/7hLhlntZIS— Will Sommer (@willsommer) August 26, 2019

  48. 48
    TenguPhule says:

    KFC to hold US trial of vegan ‘chicken’ nuggets

    KFC is to deviate from Colonel Sanders’ original “finger lickin’ good” recipe by offering nuggets made from plants, rather than its traditional chickens.

    The fast-food chain said it was working with the rapidly growing meat substitute company Beyond Meat on a one-day trial that if successful would lead to plant-based chicken nuggets and wings appearing on its US menu. KFC, which is owned by the New York stock exchange-listed Yum! Brands, has more than 23,000 restaurants around the world.

    The product is called Beyond Fried Chicken and comes with the tagline “a Kentucky fried miracle”. The nuggets are presented in green rather than KFC’s trademark red containers and carry the promise that what’s inside is “still finger lickin’ good”. The limited trial involves giving out free samples to customers. Kevin Hochman, the chief concept officer of KFC US, claimed customers would “find it difficult to tell” the nuggets were plant-based.

    Now this is just getting out of hand.

  49. 49
    HalfAssedHomesteader says:

    If we’re graced enough to win the WH and congress in 2020 I worry that they’ll have the courage to seek justice for these crimes and not “move on and heal”. We will never heal if we don’t call these crimes what they are and act accordingly.

  50. 50
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    Well the first story proves isn’t racism that’s really driving this; it’s outright class warfare.

    If we have to subsides farmers it is vile and outrageous that children go hungry in this country.

  51. 51
    TenguPhule says:

    Aaron Rupar

    @atrupar
    Replying to @atrupar
    REPORTER: What do you think the world should be doing about climate change?

    TRUMP: “I feel the US has tremendous wealth… I’m not going to lose that wealth on dreams, on windmills – which, frankly, aren’t working too well… I think I know more about the environment than most.”

    5:49 AM – Aug 26, 2019

    Also, Trump is sorry, not sorry.

    Trump offered a very defensive, sarcastic apology when he was asked about the strategy behind escalating his trade war with China even as global markets struggled because of it.

    “Sorry! It’s the way I negotiate,” Trump said. “It’s the way I negotiate. It’s done very well for me over the years, and it’s done even better for the country.”

  52. 52
    TenguPhule says:

    “I think it would be better to have Russia inside the tent than outside the tent,” Trump said. He added, “I do nothing for politics … I do what’s right, and people like what I do.”

    Truly this is proof that there is no god.

  53. 53
    germy says:

    As Trump proclaims himself the messiah and plots to nuke hurricanes, a reminder that Pelosi blocked experts on mental health from testifying to Congress about his state of mind: https://t.co/9xUwRlR0V8— Sarah Kendzior (@sarahkendzior) August 26, 2019

  54. 54
    TenguPhule says:

    Trump said he believed China wanted to reach a trade deal and that he considered their statements about doing so to be sincere. He added that he considered the Chinese president, Xi Jinping, to be a “great leader” and a “brilliant man.”

    Last Week Friday he was calling Xi his Enemy.

  55. 55
    Betty Cracker says:

  56. 56
    TenguPhule says:

    @germy: You’d think now would be a good time for her to start pushing her caucus to impeach him. If she intends to wait until he literally murders someone on 5th avenue, I dunno, maybe we need to have an expert examine her state of mind.

  57. 57
    What Have the Romans Ever Done for Us? says:

    My mom grew up in “the valley” in PA but I think it was a different valley. But in coal country (far western Schuylkill County to be exact). I think there are a lot of places people refer to as “the valley” in PA.

  58. 58
    JPL says:

    Since trump is going to Poland this weekend, I assumed he was spending the week in Europe. Truthfully, I like when he’s out of the country, because he doesn’t appear to cause as much chaos.

  59. 59
    TenguPhule says:

    @Betty Cracker: Why is Sanders up 6? Are we really this stupid of a country?

  60. 60
    JPL says:

    @Betty Cracker: Unfortunately Bernie went up.

  61. 61
    TenguPhule says:

    @JPL:

    Truthfully, I like when he’s out of the country, because he doesn’t appear to cause as much chaos.

    File under “Things you should know better then to taunt the Fates in this timeline with by now.”

  62. 62
  63. 63
    rikyrah says:

    @TenguPhule:

    Poll only had 300 voters sampled.

    Hmmmph

  64. 64
    germy says:

    It must be painful for O’Rourke to be tied with Williamson.

  65. 65
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @SFAW:

    Fuck Stephen Miller, I hope he he gets run over by a bus. Repeatedly.

    I’d prefer he be hanged alive after the trials are over.

    Can we compromise and run his body over with a bus before it’s chucked into a volcano?

  66. 66
    germy says:

    @rikyrah:

    Poll only had 300 voters sampled.

    Caveat emptor. It’s early. But pollsters gotta poll.

  67. 67
    Hoodie says:

    @rikyrah: It’s quite possible that the direct actors (e.g., Stephen Miller, certain ICE personnel, this school admin) have above average sadistic tendencies, but the tolerance (and enabling) of the sadism is more likely the product of obedience to authority. There is probably a residual percentage of people in the general population that have greater sadistic tendencies but, under normal circumstances, societal norms tend to modulate their behavior because of fear of punishment, ostracism, etc. When you have a situation in which there is an increased tolerance of sadism in the pursuit of some ideological goal, these people can let their freak flag fly.

  68. 68
    TenguPhule says:

    @mrmoshpotato:

    Can we compromise and run his body over with a bus before it’s chucked into a volcano?

    As long as you don’t throw him in ours. Its bad enough with the hurricanes and active volcano as it is.

  69. 69
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @Jeffro: Everyone knows Jesus and his disciples handed out bills while collecting what wasn’t eaten of the loaves and fishes.

    Also the scolding. “Your family ate three fish when there were only 2, you selfish jerks.”

  70. 70
    germy says:

    On the day the @nytimes officially launches it’s #1619Project reframing how we discuss the legacy of slavery they feature white supremacist Stephen Miller on THE FRONT PAGE (1619 under the fold) calling him a “firebrand” instead of what he is, a racist. @deanbaquet #SundayMorning pic.twitter.com/5Z76R5oJX0— Maya Contreras (@mayatcontreras) August 18, 2019

    I think there’s an internal battle going on right now for the soul of the NYT. I hope the journalists with souls win.

  71. 71

    @rikyrah: It’s not too off from a recent Economist/YouGov poll, and while they’re both outlier-y from recent history regarding Biden, they’re also not too far off from the aggregates regarding Warren and Sanders. (https://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2020/president/us/2020_democratic_presidential_nomination-6730.html, scroll down)

    The Sanders peeps I know IRL have been pretty psyched lately, ever since Bernie’s surrogates started attacking Warren. Perhaps that’s firing up the dirtbag brigade.

    But as always, rather than pick apart rando non-Rasmussen polls, we can just wait a few days and see if other pollsters agree or if it is truly an outlier.

  72. 72

    @Ohio Mom:
    Yes, and the Interstate Highway system was designed for military mobility. There is an important category of conservatives who will only pay for anything that can be justified as important for national security, so people have come up with all kinds of rationalizations for why this, that, and the other program is essential for national security in order to win those votes.

  73. 73
    Baud says:

    @Major Major Major Major:

    Joe Biden probably still leads the Democratic race

    Suggests poll is an outlier with respect to Biden.

    Still, I am disappointed at Bernie’s showing.

  74. 74
    HalfAssedHomesteader says:

    @Jay:

    After authorities became aware of the situation

    “the situation” of course, being that news was about to come out about the kids’ being left alone for days.

  75. 75
    germy says:

    @Roger Moore: Conservatives loved that the Interstate HIghway System bulldozed many minority neighborhoods.

  76. 76
    zhena gogolia says:

    @germy:

    That’s right, Sarah, let’s not lose sight of the REAL enemy — Nancy Pelosi.

  77. 77
    Baud says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    No shit. Jesus Christ. What a picayune and meaningless attack.

  78. 78
    zhena gogolia says:

    @TenguPhule:

    Don’t forget misogynist.

    How anyone could prefer Sanders to Warren or Harris is way beyond me.

  79. 79
    JPL says:

    @mrmoshpotato: Why the bus? I’d just go with the volcano.

  80. 80
    Miss Bianca says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    That’s right, Sarah, let’s not lose sight of the REAL enemy — Nancy Pelosi.

    That’s right! Thank goodness for Great Patriot Citizen Journalists for keeping everything real!

    *eye roll*

  81. 81

    @Baud:

    Suggests poll is an outlier with respect to Biden.

    Well, you don’t need Harry Enten to tell you that :) the question is whether the poll is correct. So far there is no reason to think it is (other than its existence), and reasonably good reasons to think it isn’t.

  82. 82

    @zhena gogolia: @Baud: @Miss Bianca: I kind of don’t want doctors who haven’t examined a person testifying before Congress about that person’s health. Especially their mental health. As a (technically) disabled person due to a mood disorder, it makes me very uncomfortable.

  83. 83
    Baud says:

    @Major Major Major Major:

    You’re being extra smarty pants today. Why the good mood?

  84. 84
    Spanky says:

    @Baud: Because everybody knows the Speaker can invoke the 25th amendment. Amirite?

    Or is it that she secretly knows she has the votes in the House for impeachment, and is not acting on that out of spite?

  85. 85
    germy says:

    @Ohio Mom:

    We started serving school lunch after the World War II military had to turn too many malnourished men away. I’m guessing bow-legged from rickets was one of the typical conditions that sent would-be recruits home.

    My father was so poor I remember him telling me he had the first good meal of his life after he enlisted in the army (immediately after Pearl Harbor)

  86. 86
    germy says:

    @zhena gogolia: I respect Sarah Kendzior. She speaks truth to power.

  87. 87
    TenguPhule says:

    @Major Major Major Major: Watching Trump tweets and actions causes chaos across the world is making me more then uncomfortable.

  88. 88
    Gravenstone says:

    @TenguPhule:

    I think I know more about the environment than most.

    Once. Just ONCE I would like someone to reply to His Corpulence when he pulls these non-sequiturs out of his ample ass that he doesn’t know jack shit about anything. Never has, never will.

  89. 89
    Baud says:

    @germy:

    Maybe. But that particular tweet is not worthy of respect.

  90. 90
    The Moar You Know says:

    Why is Sanders up 6? Are we really this stupid of a country?

    @TenguPhule: At least we won’t have to deal with that incompetent loser Joe Biden. Just as bad as Trump, from all I read here.

    The most certain way to lose this election is to try and vault Sanders into the Oval Office and it looks like that’s where Dems want to go this cycle.

  91. 91
    TenguPhule says:

    @Gravenstone:

    Just ONCE I would like someone to reply to His Corpulence when he pulls these non-sequiturs out of his ample ass that he doesn’t know jack shit about anything.

    Amen.

  92. 92
    Marcopolo says:

    @Major Major Major Major: Sample size is under 300 respondents; margin of error is just under 6 points. Take the poll with an Adam Silverman sized grain of salt. Some of the cross tab numbers are a little interesting (like Wilmer’s early state vs other states #s) & you can maybe get some useful info looking at changes in numbers over the prior polls but best to just take this, throw it in the mix with all the other recent polls & take the average of that number. And I say this as someone who just broke down & ordered my Warren for Prez merch 3 days ago.

  93. 93
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @TenguPhule: Have you found an active Aleutian Islands volcano for the purpose yet?

  94. 94
    Barbara says:

    @Lapassionara: @laura:

    As retirees become indigent, their children and other relations will be responsible for their maintenance/housing and should anticipate letters similar to those school council president Mazur issued.

    It’s been tried. Your parents and your adult children are not your dependents.

  95. 95

    @zhena gogolia: Sister Sarah has t-shirts and other merch to sell. If NP bashing is what her audience demands, that’s what they will get.

  96. 96
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Major Major Major Major:

    I agree.

    We all were outraged when the cat-killer diagnosed Terry Schiavo long-distance.

  97. 97
    Baud says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    One outlier poll is not a basis for that conclusion.

  98. 98
    Spanky says:

    WaPo site has another pic of trump shaking hands with Macron while Macron gives him a big thumbs-up.

    My, what long thumbs you have, Monsieur President!

  99. 99

    @TenguPhule:

    I kind of don’t want doctors who haven’t examined a person testifying before Congress about that person’s health. Especially their mental health. As a (technically) disabled person due to a mood disorder, it makes me very uncomfortable.

    Watching Trump tweets and actions causes chaos across the world is making me more then uncomfortable.

    Must be nice not to have a disability that’s constantly blamed for societal ills, people saying we should have fundamental rights stripped from us, etc.

    How would the congressional testimony in question help anyway?

  100. 100
    Yutsano says:

    @TenguPhule: Sure. Let’s piss Pele off. What’s the worst that could happen?

    *imagines the worst that could happen*

    Okay fine we’ll go with your plan.

  101. 101
    germy says:

    @schrodingers_cat:

    I said it so much, one of my readers made it into a T-shirt and gave it to me at my talk last week in Walla Walla! pic.twitter.com/0vGb8WWhMG— Sarah Kendzior (@sarahkendzior) May 1, 2019

    Ha! We made these shirts! Happy to make available with Sarah's permission and we can donate proceeds to GLN! pic.twitter.com/S4Qi4FLHdd— M🍑x1000 (@art2resist) May 1, 2019

  102. 102
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @JPL: Take it up with SFAW. :)

  103. 103
    TenguPhule says:

    @mrmoshpotato:

    Have you found an active Aleutian Islands volcano for the purpose yet?

    I did find an old proposal to ignite a dead volcano with nukes.

    I figure we can risk it since its only Alaska. //

  104. 104
    zhena gogolia says:

    @germy:

    I don’t trust Sarah Kendzior as far as I can throw her.

  105. 105

    @Baud: Sorry, I’ll stop. *retreats to cave*

  106. 106
    zhena gogolia says:

    Anyone who’s attacking Democrats right now is not helping the anti-fascist cause.

  107. 107
    Gravenstone says:

    @Yutsano: Maybe Pele has a ‘hotline’ to the Yellowstone caldera.

  108. 108
    TenguPhule says:

    @Major Major Major Major: Trump threw a diplomatic temper tantrum about not being allowed to buy Greenland, declared the Leaders of China and the Fed were enemies and promoted himself as the Chosen King of Israel.

    All of this was LAST WEEK.

    Maybe choose a better hill?

  109. 109
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @TenguPhule: We’ll just tell Sarah Palin that the man can’t ride ya if you nuke a volcano.

  110. 110

    @zhena gogolia: Same here. That’s my problem with the Sunrise movement and Justice Dems too.

  111. 111

    @TenguPhule:

    Maybe choose a better hill?

    Must be nice.

    Perhaps you could select a hill that would actually mean something to the war against Trump if held.

  112. 112
    germy says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    I don’t trust Sarah Kendzior as far as I can throw her.

    I didn’t know who Kendzior was until I saw her on Joy Reid’s show. I don’t know what’s untrustworthy about her. She’s been a consistent critic of the current maladministration.

  113. 113
    Marcopolo says:

    @The Moar You Know: Having watched Biden in the debates & following his campaign appearances it certainly seems to me he is suffering age (I guess) related cognitive decline/impairment. I will vote for him if he is the nominee but the position of POTUS is the most stressful job in the world. I would rather have someone who seems more mentally fit/agile as our nominee.

    And then there is the whole idea that shit will go back to normal (whatever the eff normal means) after Trump is beaten that he is trying to sell that I just don’t buy.

    But the same as Trump? I don’t remember anyone commenting here saying anything close to that.

  114. 114
    zhena gogolia says:

    @germy:

    She’s a cynical self-promoter, as far as I can tell.

  115. 115
    Miss Bianca says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    Anyone who’s attacking Democrats right now is not helping the anti-fascist cause.

    THANK YOU, Jesus Jazz Hands Christ (h/t Betty C), I had a serious “lose my shit” day yesterday because of fucking bone-headed Colorado Democratic Party County OFFICIALS doing just this, and melted down all over their azzes. Haven’t bothered to check in with them today, but from the couple emails I happened to catch in passing, seems like at least some of them woke up and went, “oh, yeah – you’re right, maybe we *shouldn’t* be attacking fellow Dems over the Senate seat thing”.

  116. 116
    germy says:

    @zhena gogolia: Most people who write books nowadays need to promote themselves. Publishers have outsourced that to writers, and even make it a contractual requirement.

  117. 117
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    People are so idiotic. We have a mayoral race in which there are 5 Democrats about to have a primary, and only one Republican candidate who’s a former mayor. He once screamed at me at a young woman’s graduation party about how Obama had increased the deficit 1,000,000 percent or something like that — I mean screaming, red-faced. He’s an incredible jerk. Today at lunch a highly liberal woman said that if X or Y wins the Democratic primary, she’s voting for the Repub. I was so upset. WHY????

  118. 118
    zhena gogolia says:

    @germy:

    She promotes herself by attacking Democrats. I’ll pass.

  119. 119
    Marcopolo says:

    @zhena gogolia: Great, you read one comment about someone & go nuclear on them. Or maybe you can cite other specific things SK has said you hate?

    SK lives in St Louis & I’ve heard her speak live, I’ve read her book The View From Flyover Country, and I’ve listened to quite a few of the episodes of her podcast “Gaslit Nation.” She’s been spot on when it comes to talking about Trump, about strategies for dealing with leaders like him, and how Democratic countries fall prey and die at the hands of authoritarian politics.

    She’s not perfect, she does occasionally say things I don’t agree with but I highly respect her knowledge & thinking in regards to what is happening every day under Trump.

  120. 120
    TenguPhule says:

    @Major Major Major Major: If having a professional declare Donald Trump is insane by proxy diagnosis can possibly shift some more votes into our side come the election, I’ll take it. He’s doing this in full public view. So I don’t get this aversion to having him officially declared when we can all see what he’s doing. Whatever standard you want to hold, he’s exceeded them.

  121. 121
    Miss Bianca says:

    @zhena gogolia: Man, I don’t know. Were you able to ask *her* “why?”, or were you too busy trying not to throw things?

    Is this highly liberal woman white, well-educated, and comfortably off? If so, then *she’s* not in any trouble from the Nazis, or so she thinks.

  122. 122
    Mandalay says:

    @Marcopolo:

    but the position of POTUS is the most stressful job in the world

    Nothing personal, but I am tired of reading that nonsense. It is one of the jobs in the world with the most responsibility in the sense that your action or inaction can adversely impact millions of people, but there is no evidence that it is “the most stressful job in the world”, and the claim doesn’t even mean anything. Who decides that being President of the USA is more stressful than being President of China or Russia, or working a second job as a night clerk in a convenience store in a bad part of town?

    And if the job truly is so stressful, why does almost every president in modern times decide to run for a second term?

  123. 123
    TenguPhule says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    She promotes herself by attacking Democrats.

    If pointing out that Nancy Pelosi isn’t doing any heavy lifting while everyone else is going all hands on deck is considered an attack, we’re in more trouble then I thought.

  124. 124
    Marcopolo says:

    @germy: Stating an opinion does not always equate to promoting oneself, does it?

    Or am I just saying this to promote myself?

  125. 125
    TenguPhule says:

    @Marcopolo:

    but the position of POTUS is the most stressful job in the world

    With the caveat that this is only true if you take the responsibilities of the office seriously.

  126. 126

    @TenguPhule:

    Nancy Pelosi isn’t doing any heavy lifting

    Did you have self parody flakes for breakfast or something?

    Alright, I should probably get some work done…

  127. 127
    Betty Cracker says:

    @germy: I like Kendzior and think she means well, but she’s not the most nuanced person on the planet, and her absolute certitude can be wearing. She seems unable to distinguish good faith disagreement from bad, but to be fair, that’s a common malady, one I fall prey to often enough myself.

  128. 128
    germy says:

    @Betty Cracker: Here’s Sarah back in April:

    I'm not endorsing a candidate yet because it's too early. But Elizabeth Warren keeps impressing me with her moral clarity, practical plans, and willingness to tackle corruption head on. Pay attention to Elizabeth Warren — not just for 2020 but for today.— Sarah Kendzior (@sarahkendzior) April 19, 2019

    I tend to agree with her more than I disagree. She’s not a Steiniac or a Gabbard stan. You’re right she’s not the most nuanced, but I think that’s because of current events being so horrifying.

  129. 129
    Marcopolo says:

    @Marcopolo: If you are trying to say Trump isn’t stressed by the job I’m gonna disagree. He is certifiably less sane now than when he took office.

    And i know the automatic response is “how can you tell?” but honestly we should probably all be a little terrified every time we actually think about it. I know I am.

  130. 130
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @AThornton: The fact
    that people will do bad things if directed to do so by a figure in authority does not mean that they are not fundamentally decent. It merely means that decency can be overcome by deference to authority.

  131. 131
    Miss Bianca says:

    @TenguPhule: @Major Major Major Major: Maybe I’m just being uniquely dense today (Judy Tenuta voice: “It could happen!”), but I fail to see how Nancy Pelosi’s calling some psychiatrist in, who’s not Donald Trump’s physician, to do some performative “Yeah, he’s nuts, all right!” thing in front of Congress actually does anything substantive. In fact, I’d call it malpractice.

    And to leap from “she didn’t do that so obviously she’s just sitting on her thumb and spinning while everyone else in the entire world is doing the heavy lifting to rid us of this meddlesome POTUS” is…um…a bit of a stretch. To put it mildly.

  132. 132
    RedDirtGirl says:

    @Ohio Mom: Word!

  133. 133
    Eunicecycle says:

    @germy: My dad said he gained weight after he enlisted because it was the first time he had 3 meals a day.

  134. 134
    Yutsano says:

    @TenguPhule:

    If pointing out that Nancy Pelosi isn’t doing any heavy lifting while everyone else is going all hands on deck is considered an attack, we’re in more trouble then I thought.

    I posit neither you nor anyone else on this blog has a fig of a notion as to what Nancy Pelosi is and is not doing. Just because things are not happening in public view with public commentary doesn’t necessarily mean things aren’t happening.

    There is also the notion of getting in front of your skis. Whatever else Pelosi is good at, not doing that is one of her strongest tendencies. You take that as timidity. I say we have no idea what’s really happening and pretending otherwise is a fool’s errand.

  135. 135
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Ohio Mom: Which countries fed kids out of the goodness of their hearts? It’s not just our culture.

  136. 136
    Baud says:

    @Yutsano:

    Plus, calling a bunch of shrinks to diagnose Trump isn’t heavy lifting. It’s political malpractice.

    ETA: Miss Bianca said it first.

  137. 137
    germy says:

    @Marcopolo:

    Stating an opinion does not always equate to promoting oneself, does it?

    Writing a book and then trying to get people interested in reading it is Self Promotion.

    Questioning whether the POTUS is sliding into dementia is an insult to all young people who suffer from mental Illness.

    Having an audience member during one of your lectures present you with a t-shirt featuring a phrase you used is pushing t-shirts and “merch”.

  138. 138
    Marcopolo says:

    @Mandalay:Well I look at the physical evidence for one: How Obama & Bush looked physically at the start & end of their presidencies. As for why they run for a second term…um…

    Why run in the first place?
    If you’ve done it once it should be easier the 2nd time
    Unfinished business
    It’s the most powerful office in the world

    I could go on but I have to go grocery shopping.

  139. 139
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    I asked her. Her only response was that she couldn’t tolerate either of those two (out of 5) Democrats.

    To be fair, I can’t tolerate one of the those two. If he’s nominated, I just won’t vote. But I CERTAINLY won’t vote for the Repug.

  140. 140
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    Yes, white, educated, fairly well off.

  141. 141
    germy says:

    @Eunicecycle:

    My dad said he gained weight after he enlisted because it was the first time he had 3 meals a day.

    Same as my father. Until he was captured by the germans. Then he went down to about 98 pounds.

  142. 142
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    Exactly.

  143. 143
    gene108 says:

    @TenguPhule:

    Trump threw a diplomatic temper tantrum about not being allowed to buy Greenland, declared the Leaders of China and the Fed were enemies and promoted himself as the Chosen King of Israel.

    All of this was LAST WEEK.

    Maybe choose a better hill?

    I have (had) 2 major health problems in my life.

    The first was untreated chronic depression, which turned into 2 major depressive episodes. The 2nd of which led to a suicide attempt and hospitalization.

    The other is kidney failure.

    If it comes up, I will openly talk about kidney failure, w/ people I meet face-to-face.

    Unless, I can remain anonymous on-line, I will never talk about my mental health issues, unless I feel like I can trust the person. And this is 16+ years after my last episode.

    There’s so much stigma around mental illness, which isn’t helped by gun nuts blaming mass shootings on anyone w/ a diagnosis, that the last thing we need are speculative attempts to diagnose Trump, w/o doctors actually seeing him.

    So yeah, it’s a hill worth dying on.

  144. 144
    Yutsano says:

    @Miss Bianca: @Baud:

    In fact, I’d call it malpractice.

    You don’t have to call it malpractice. It IS malpractice. In fact, there are rules that prevent psychiatrists/psychologists from doing this exact action. If you see any mental health professional being quoted, it’s always in general terms where they will state they have not performed an evaluation on the President so they cannot state for certain. To do otherwise is to bring them up on ethics charges and spike their careers.

  145. 145
    germy says:

    @gene108: I think we’re comparing apples/oranges.

    Mental illness and depression vs. Trump’s age-related dementia. What makes Trump’s dementia worse is the fact he is a fundamentally dishonest, evil person. I believe Biden is exhibiting an age-related decline as well (not as bad as Trump’s), but Biden is basically a decent person.

    A young person (or a middle-aged person) who suffers from major depression is different from Trump and what he is experiencing. I won’t even use the word “suffering” because I doubt he would ever attempt suicide.

  146. 146
    gene108 says:

    @TenguPhule:

    having a professional declare Donald Trump is insane by proxy diagnosis can possibly shift some more votes into our side come the election, I’ll take it. He’s doing this in full public view. So I don’t get this aversion to having him officially declared when we can all see what he’s doing. Whatever standard you want to hold, he’s exceeded them.

    Can I have a professional declare my brother mentally unfit, at a distance, so I don’t have to split whatever inheritance (won’t be much) we might get?

    When does this “diagnose at a distance” end? Legitimize it for Trump, and some very unscrupulous people will use it to screw others

  147. 147
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @germy: So has George Will. You trust him, right?

  148. 148
    germy says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Lockjaw Kermit’s criticism of trump is not the same as Kendzior’s. Kendzior sees the problem as the GOP, and saw the trends starting long before Trump.

    George Will is simply offended by Trump’s boorishness. George would have been delighted with president Romney and vice president Ryan. Kendzior wouldn’t.

  149. 149
    Yutsano says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Depends. Isn’t he about due to have another affair and move on to wife number 4?

  150. 150
    zhena gogolia says:

    So many people recommended Sarah Kendzior to me when she first came on the scene after the election, and I read some of her stuff. I had no preconceived notion about her, had never heard of her, but was very quickly turned off. I can no longer remember exactly what the (numerous) things were that turned me off, but I’ve pretty much ignored her since then, except when someone on here repeats one of her tweets. Nothing I’ve seen quoted has made me question my original decision to ignore her.

  151. 151

    Oklahoma judge has ordered pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson to pay $572 million for playing a substantial role in the state's opioid crisis.The verdict was issued by Cleveland County District Judge Thad Balkman.— Shimon Prokupecz (@ShimonPro) August 26, 2019

  152. 152
    Chris Johnson says:

    There’s a shitload of on-active-duty Russian comrades out there already trying to jockey for position. I have no doubt that they’re pushing Bernie, with or without his willingness (I still think not, because he got rid of Tad Devine) because that’s what they did last time and they’ve got everything to gain from running the same play again.

    There are also a shitload of disengaged, odds-figuring, cowardly (or maybe they know TOO much) Democrats who’re gonna keep their powder dry until they are buried with it, because these times are too dangerous and these people are really concerned about managing their traitor-defeating without paying too high a price for themselves. Some of ’em, like Biden, want to protect their Republican friends.

    This is how we became another Reich. God only knows how far it will go. We have already lost the planet, so the question is, how much worse will we stand?

    And that sounds real negative, which it is, but I am in the Elvis Costello camp (listen to ‘Tramp The Dirt Down’ sometime): I intend to live long enough to see some heads on pikes, and if that’s a problem, I’d rather go out wielding a pike than on the wrong end of one. There is no hope for a future… but there will be a future about as welcoming as the colonization of Mars (but here, not on Mars) and there is at least hope for vengeance. I want to see some of that, and I’ll fight my way through the world we’re bequeathed by all these assholes running around today.

    I’m going hungrier these days because I gotta cut down on food and am strongly motivated to cut down on MEAT because of its great inefficiencies, so I’m going to be wanting to die (due to going hungry and getting emotionally twitchy) on a daily basis now before getting to have a small dinner and bouncing back a little. I’ll try to stay distracted. I’m sure I’m far from alone in all this.

  153. 153
    Gravenstone says:

    @Yutsano: It also sets a horrible precedent for some future Republican controlled Congress to bring in their “experts” to try and publicly discredit a Democratic president, however boundless those claims would actually be. Not that I wouldn’t put it past some of the current crop in the here and now, given the appropriate circumstances.

  154. 154
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Does George will have a Ph.D. in the study of how dictators use the Internet to undermine public trust in the media?

  155. 155
    Baud says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    As we get closer to the election, you’ll start to see more and more people who claim to be Trump critics find reasons why they can’t support the Democrats.

    And the NYT will probably interview each one of them.

  156. 156
    germy says:

    @Gin & Tonic: He has a bow tie. And he likes baseball. Isn’t that enough?

  157. 157
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Gravenstone: The use of “psychiatry” to suppress dissent has a long and sordid history in the USSR. I hope the US is better than that.

  158. 158
    TenguPhule says:

    @gene108:

    When does this “diagnose at a distance” end?

    It starts and ends whenever there’s enough Bananapants crazy in full public display with fucking records to make it beyond a reasonable doubt.

    Like I said, I don’t get this whole “but what about vague hypothetical situation Y” when we have a fucking madman sticking metaphorical pencils up his nose and wobbling on camera.

  159. 159
    germy says:

    @Gin & Tonic: Questioning Trump’s fitness for office is suppressing dissent now?

  160. 160
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    Well, then you disagree with Kendzior.

  161. 161
    zhena gogolia says:

    @germy:

    He was on your side, I believe.

  162. 162
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Gin & Tonic: Probably not. But I was responding to a specific statement and its implication that criticism of Trump indicated trustworthiness.

  163. 163
    gene108 says:

    @germy:

    Nope. Not comparing different things at all.

    Trump’s an awful human being. But being an asshole is not the same as mental illness.

    Declaring people mentally unfit, without an actual examination would never be tolerated in any other part of the medical profession.

    A hypothetical example, Dr. Walker notices John Legend has been walking, with a bit of a limp the past few weeks. So have many of John’s fans. Based on footage from TMZ, Inside Edition, YouTube, etc., they all decide he must need knee replacement surgery.

    We either adhere to standards, even if it isn’t in our favor, or we stand for nothing.

  164. 164
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @germy: You and I are free to question Trump’s fitness for office all we want. Having a licensed psychiatrist offering a “diagnosis” without a clinical evaluation is a) medical malpractice and b) an awfully slippery slope.

  165. 165
    Yutsano says:

    @Gravenstone: Look at what gene108 said at comment #146. That shit USED TO HAPPEN. It initially made the profession of psychology untrustworthy until they got together and slapped a code of ethics on themselves. You cannot trust any sort of diagnosis without the clinician and the patient having their own discrete space of time for a proper diagnosis. You certainly don’t have someone declared mentally unfit at a distance and you definitely don’t perform such stupidity in a Congressional hearing. There isn’t a psychological professional who would do that for the Democrats. And those that would for the Republicans probably have some think tank sinecure to fall back on since they’ll lose their jobs.

    @Gin & Tonic: Stop being more elegant than me. :P

  166. 166
    TenguPhule says:

    @Yutsano:

    Just because things are not happening in public view with public commentary doesn’t necessarily mean things aren’t happening.

    How hard is it for the Speaker of the House to just say to the media for easy quotes that Trump is fucking nuts when he says things like buying Greenland or declaring the head of the Fed is an enemy?

    If she doesn’t lead, she will be led. And some people may not like who takes up the populist reins in her stead.

  167. 167
    oatler. says:

    OK, now we’ve got “The Chuck Toddcast”. Excelsior!

  168. 168
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    How anyone could prefer Sanders to Warren or Harris is way beyond me.

    Well, St. Wilmer never claimed membership in an Indian tribe and was never a cop! Never mind that neither of those is true, and that Wilmer is a Russian stooge and published rape fantasies and honeymooned in Russia and his wife committed major bank fraud and…well, you know all of this and more.

  169. 169
    germy says:

    @Yutsano:

    You cannot trust any sort of diagnosis without the clinician and the patient having their own discrete space of time for a proper diagnosis.

    Trump underwent an exam and then dictated to the physician what his letter should say. I find this troubling.

  170. 170
    Chris Johnson says:

    I mean, I got to see a Koch die.

    And I bet you, I just bet I can outlive Henry Kissinger.

    So there’s that ;)

  171. 171
    TenguPhule says:

    @gene108:

    There’s so much stigma around mental illness, which isn’t helped by gun nuts blaming mass shootings on anyone w/ a diagnosis, that the last thing we need are speculative attempts to diagnose Trump, w/o doctors actually seeing him.

    I submit that its precisely why there is such a stigma that Trump needs to be tarred in it. His previous official health evaluations were already bald faced lies.

    We need medical professionals to go up and state “I’d have to examine him to be sure, but the behavior we are witnessing from this man is the kind of thing that only crazy people would do.”

    Make him deny it. We fight in the shitty media environment we have, not the idealistic one we’d prefer.

  172. 172
    jonas says:

    @TenguPhule:

    “Sorry! It’s the way I negotiate,” Trump said. “It’s the way I negotiate. It’s done very well for me over the years, and it’s done even better for the country.”

    Narrator: “It hadn’t”

  173. 173
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @TenguPhule: I am starting to get a real William Roper vibe from you.

  174. 174
    jl says:

    @jonas: It works when you can bankrupt small fry contractors, employees and business partners with threats of legal harassment and lawsuits with an army of sleazy lawyers.

    Trump thinks he is still playing in that league. And Trump thinks that scraping by with the few nickles and dimes scraped in with that racket after bankruptcies due to his own incompetence is all that matters.

  175. 175
    piratedan says:

    @Yutsano: considering Nancy brought up and crafted the ACA with her caucus and managed to whip votes for it as the right thing to do in a very difficult climate makes me think that there are some outliers in the Dem caucus that we’re not able to account for in regards to impeachment. Nancy can’t whip votes that she doesn’t have and to think that she can stand behind a pulpit and simply order them to come along and do what’s right in regards to impeachment means that the votes are not there yet. Why every Dem legislator in Congress is not on the record for being in favor of impeachment means that there are some who remain unconvinced or are bought and paid for and are staying bought in regards to impeachment (or perhaps to say that they are leveraged, might be a kinder way of stating this). I’m not sure how leadershippy she can be, its not as if the media is on her doorstep everyday raising the question, is it? Sure, we watch in horror as each new travesty unfolds, but tell, where the fuck is the public pressure? Why is there no media lede on this every fucking day? Without the constant pressure and knowledge of who is standing in the way of said pressure, how do you apply it? We can find out who is in favor of impeachment, why haven’t the remainder of the Dem caucus come on board? For fucks sake, why aren’t there any GOP members on board?

    Instead we get the same takes about Pelosi “not doing enough”.

    If you want to castigate Pelosi for not twisting enough arms to get the caucus on board, okay then, how should she do that, in public or private? What would be the media narrative on this if she started to lean on her caucus more publicly? So what happens if/when it passes, what happens next? it goes to Moscow Mitch to die an ignominious death most likely, true?

    I would be hugely in favor of impeachment, but other than a public black eye delivered by the legislature, would they be able to remove him from office? Would the media cover it longer than a day?

  176. 176
    OGLiberal says:

    That Mazur dude, unfortunately, is a Democrat and former Luzerne County party chair. Obama won Luzerne by 8% in 2008 and by 5% in 2012. That huge swing to Trump was no at all uncommon in NEPA. Hillary barely won Lackawann County (Scranton), relatively speaking – Obama beat Romney in Lackawanna County, 63%-36%. Hillary beat Trump 50%-46%. She significantly under-performed v. the downticket Dem candidates, all of whom (except one – a CD that crosses into another, more conservative county) won the county (not necessarily the race) handily. So there is a chance that an old white Dem like Mazur could have been a Trump voter in 2016. Trump has some kind of magic with the folks up in NEPA, who are almost all white, heavily and not particularly financially well off. It’s a mix of urban, suburban, rural and forests but the large majority of the folks live in the urban valley cities/towns. (and the majority are registered Dems)

  177. 177
    Betty says:

    @laura: i believe Pennsylvania changed that rule a few years ago. I worked with Welfare when we had to demand support from relatives. It was ugly.

  178. 178
    A Ghost To Most says:

    If you aren’t watching MSNBC right now, you are missing an incredible interview with Joe Walsh. Heileman and David Jolly questioned his apology vigorously.

  179. 179

    Here is the list of Democrats who have come out in favor of at least starting an impeachment inquiry. It is updated to today. I’d do more with it, but I’m in the middle of some dialogs about what the isotope measurements released on the Nyonoksa event mean. (I’m beginning to think not much beyond it was a fission event.)

    IF YOUR REPRESENTATIVE ISN’T ON THIS LIST, GET ON THE PHONE AND MAKE THEIR LIFE MISERABLE!

  180. 180

    @Cheryl Rofer: My rep, Sean Casten, is on the list. This is his first term. He won a seat that had been held by Republican, defeating incumbent Peter Roskam.

  181. 181
    Miss Bianca says:

    WHAT THE EVERLOVING FUCK – I have a Denver Post reporter calling me about the goddamn email I sent to the state Democratic Party!! AAAAAGGH

  182. 182
    Sab says:

    @Ohio Mom: @rikyrah: On a heartening note on lunches, my husband and I were driving by our local elementary school in July and noticed the school speed zone light was on. We ranted a bit about the school year being over so turn off the light.

    ABout a week later I was driving by and I noticed the signs at each corner that this school was one of the ones offering “free lunches all summer for kids, no questions asked.”

    My taxes at work. That’s why I always vote for the bond issues.

    ETA also why I live in the city limits and not in a suburb or exurb.

  183. 183
    Baud says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    Uh oh. You have a Snowden in your ranks.

  184. 184
    TenguPhule says:

    And in other horrible news, Measles infected tourist confirmed to have visited California and Disneyland.

    Again.

  185. 185
    Jay says:

    Three hours later @ewarren photo line still wrapped around the park in Seattle. She’s still going since she doesn’t have a fundraiser she’s got to off to. Blue arrow = EWRed arrow = End of line pic.twitter.com/xaDHLeYo1R— Kristen Orthman (@KristenOrthman) August 26, 2019

  186. 186
    trollhattan says:

    ABG–Always Be Grifting. Always.

    US President Donald Trump has suggested hosting next year’s G7 meeting at his golf resort in Miami, Florida.

    Speaking as this year’s meeting of world leaders wrapped up, he told reporters that “my people” had toured venues across the US before concluding his Doral hotel would be ideal. “It’s not about me, it’s about getting the right location,” he said at a news conference on Monday.

    Critics accused Mr Trump of trying to profit from the summit.

    The US president made the remarks as he and the leaders of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the UK ended their three-day meeting in Biarritz, France. Mr Trump’s property, the National Doral Miami, is located around 8 miles (13 km) from Miami’s airport. He said Secret Service and “military people” were among his scouts who toured “all over the country and they came up and said this is where we’d like to be. My people looked at 12 sites – all good, but some were two hours from an airport, some four hours – so far away,” Mr Trump said. “Some didn’t allow this, didn’t allow that.”

    When asked by a reporter on the propriety of picking his own property to host G7, Mr Trump said doing so would actually cost him money.

    “In my opinion, I’m not going to make any money,” he said. “I don’t care about making money… I think it just works out well.”

    __BBC

    So unpredictable he’s predictable.

  187. 187
    Citizen Alan says:

    @Mandalay:

    And if the job truly is so stressful, why does almost every president in modern times decide to run for a second term?

    Some combination of ego and conscience. The good presidents age terribly from stress in office because they care about how their decisions affect others. The evil and/or stupid ones are not so burdened.

  188. 188
    trollhattan says:

    @Jay:
    Ya-no, some “old people” do seem to transcend old. Look at her half-sprinting. How long has she been on her feet at this point?

    “C’mon now Donny, catch me if you can!”

  189. 189
    trollhattan says:

    @gene108:
    Dr. Senator Bill Frist would like to discuss the Schiavo case, stat.

  190. 190
    worn says:

    Finishing up my lunch break, so no time to read through all of the comments, Tom, but I just wanted to thank you for using the proper word and not some anodyne euphemism: evil.

  191. 191
    MomSense says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    Oh god. No comment?

  192. 192
    Citizen Alan says:

    Hey Tom! A minor quibble — the link for the painting is incorrect. That’s the Rubens Massacre of the Innocents shown above, not the Bruegal.

  193. 193
    Fleeting Expletive says:

    @Major Major Major Major: @A Ghost To Most: An astonishing debate. I yelled at the Walsh puppet “Do you wanna cookie?” when he acted as if, now I’ve seen the light so I’m ready to lead!!. Actually, there’s a Simpsons for that: When they go to Israel and Homer has messiah-complex, riding a camel out onto the desert.
    Fmr. Rep Jolly had a good, sharp pointy-point–if the escalator ride where he said “Mexicans are rapists” wasn’t enough to trigger your moral revulsion, why the hell not?

  194. 194
    Mandalay says:

    @trollhattan:

    “my people” had toured venues across the US before concluding his Doral hotel would be ideal

    We need someone sufficiently prominent to float the following notion to future G7 attendees: “Trump probably has cameras in every room of his hotel, recording your every move. When you go for a shit Trump will be filming it”.

    It doesn’t matter whether it’s true or not (though I wouldn’t be surprised), but its mere plausibility should be enough to kill his scam.

  195. 195
    JGabriel says:

    Tom Levernson @ Top:

    Luzerne County, in which the relevant school district operates, went 58-39% for Trump in 2016.

    Luzerne County is also home to the Kidz for Cash™ scandal a few years back.

  196. 196
    Jay says:

    #StraightPride rally fails to bring out the "500 people" boasted about by organizer. Starts with rally in a private barn which is shut down by the owner, ends with protest outside of empty Planned Parenthood, where hundreds surround them and shut it down. https://t.co/MPw93mJM5r— It's Going Down (@IGD_News) August 25, 2019

  197. 197
    Mike in NC says:

    @trollhattan: And of course his puppet-master Putin will be invited as a special guest. Didn’t see that coming, uh-huh.

  198. 198
    eric says:

    @Mandalay: i am pretty sure the russians have it all wired up…no joke

  199. 199
    Jay says:

    NEW revelations on suicide of Jeancarlo Jimenez-Joseph @ Stewart: there was year-long vacancy for full-time psychiatrist. This meant postponement by a month of evaluation of his FIVE requests to up his med dose. They instead put him in solitary for 19 days https://t.co/ccJHpPSPU2— Azadeh Shahshahani (@ashahshahani) August 23, 2019

    ICE murders again,……

  200. 200
    J R in WV says:

    Hate, fear, rage, pain, that’s the Trump strategy. No more, no less.

    Despicable sociopathic monsters, all of them!

  201. 201
    piratedan says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: ty Cheryl, if the media won’t help us do the lifting, maybe blogs like ours can….

  202. 202
    Mary Ellen Sandahl says:

    Not that it’s at all important to this convo, but that spectacular Mannerist painting is not Bruegel the Elder’s “Massacre of the Innocents”, but one of two on the subject by Rubens. If you Wiki Bruegel’s “Massacre” you’ll find that it’s possibly scarier, as it looks like an eye-witness memory of a massacre in a real village.

  203. 203
    Wakeshift says:

    @Mary Ellen Sandahl:
    The truth is always important;
    Perhaps more so now than ever.

  204. 204
    Ruckus says:

    @SFAW:
    Not a bus. A tracked vehicle. A tank, Cat D-10 bulldozer, couple hundred ton tracked crane, something like that.

  205. 205
    Procopius says:

    @HalfAssedHomesteader: Also, too, don’t these “authorities” have names? Are they not people? If you prick them, do they not bleed? Why can’t reporters even specify their titles? What good, for accountability purposes do news stories which grant anonymity not only to sources but to the actors have?

  206. 206
    Ruckus says:

    @AThornton:
    Humans are like any other animal. The goal is survival. People will walk a thousand miles if they think they can find a home were the risk of getting shot is less and eating more. People will maim and kill if they think that is what is required of them to survive. Sure some are more willing to look for an excuse than others, but most people are or can be willing if motivated. It’s one reason why MLK and John Lewis are so special, non violence is a hard thing for most to learn and practice. We as a species are just starting to get away from this and the gun fetish assholes are pushing back by demanding violence and are willing in many cases to start with maximum violence rather than escalating, shoot everybody and let god sort it out, a system that has a startling history of never working properly.

  207. 207
    Ruckus says:

    @Mandalay:
    Why do people run for a second term, especially if it is the most stressful job?
    Prestige, power, fame, for 3, it’s almost impossible to get everything you want to do, done in 4 yrs, EGO…. There are a lot of ways to say it but it takes someone who wants to be the top of the heap, and normally thinks they can do the work. drumpy is a special case, his brain is filled with ego and not a whole lot else, his inability to see anything but a false image in a mirror is part of that but notice that he’s really, really not doing the job. Listen to President Obama, who actually did the job, listen to him tell you that even if it were possible for him to have served another term, he’d be doing it alone, as in without Michelle. There are other jobs which are stressful, bomb disposal, infantryman in a war, etc. This is one that looks like it shouldn’t be as stressful as that, but I’d bet it is.

  208. 208
    karl says:

    Sorry, but the graphic isn’t Breughel, it’s Rubens.

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