On the Road and In Your Backyard

Good Morning All,

On The Road and In Your Backyard is a weekday feature spotlighting reader submissions. From the exotic to the familiar, please share your part of the world, whether you’re traveling or just in your locality. Share some photos and a narrative, let us see through your pictures and words. We’re so lucky each and every day to see and appreciate the world around us!

Submissions from commenters are welcome at tools.balloon-juice.com

Have a wonderful day – enjoy the pictures and dream of warmer climes!

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Monday Morning Open Thread: Everybody Have A Nice Restful Weekend?

Let the motherfucker burn

Pretty good article on how the Republicans’ scummy shenanigans are firing up liberals in Wisconsin and Michigan: GOP power grabs pour gas on ‘resistance’ in key Midwest states: Republican legislators in Wisconsin and Michigan have reignited Democratic energy since the midterms in two narrow Trump states.

Burn, motherfuckers, burn.

Give here to the Wisconsin Democratic party.

Goal Thermometer

Give here to the Michigan Democratic party.

Goal Thermometer

Realistically, either Trump gets blown out (and loses AZ and NC) or it comes down to these two states. So let’s keep on it.

Sunday Night Open Thread

I’m tired and I have one of those headaches in my eye- you know what I mean.

Watching a show on Netflix called Pine Gap. I’m on episode three but I don’t know how I feel about it, but at this point I suppose I am all in because i have to know how it ends.

I may take my melatonin early.

This blog used to be a raging party site, now it sounds like someone left the microphone on at the retirement home.

GOP Clown Car Open Thread: Kelly Is Out, But Nobody Wants In

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Get Me Outta Here

“Here’s your rose”

“Oh, hell no”

Leaves Washington altogether.

Criminal Abuse Open Thread: Ready Player Individual-1

Balloon Juice commentor Waldo:

What prosecutors say: The president was in on it.
What Trump hears: The president was innocent.

I’ll Hide My Shoe Somewhere Near Your Shirttail

Here is a little gem that figured into a couple of mixtapes a friend made me way back when mixtapes were actually tapes. I remembered the words and the exuberant strumming style, but I’ll be damned if I could ever have pulled the un-bluesman-like name of Doug Quattlebaum (“Have you met my accountant?”) out of long-term storage.

But with scant information I found this quickly on YouTube. It’s funny to think how hard-won this kind of musical knowledge used to be. Hours of haunting out-of-the-way record stores, cultivating a collection of fellow-traveler weirdos, keeping an ever expanding inventory of lusted-for albums ready to mind. You might even have to read a book or two to get up to speed. And the only way to hear these hidden treasures was to be within earshot of a physical copy of a recording.

I would have to say I prefer, no, vastly prefer being able to hear virtually anything I can think of on demand. But, and I know this is a commonplace sentiment, I’m certain I don’t appreciate the triumph of discovery, the revelation of finding something really superior nearly as much as when it was a demanding and sometimes expensive quest.

Our New Surreality

It’s kind of weird where we are right now. Pretty much everyone now knows and has internalized that our President and many of those who surround him, including Pence, have either committed multiple felonies or were a party to them. And that’s just the stuff we know about right now. Who knows what else Jared and Trump’s spawn have done that haven’t even been released yet. And we have barely scratched the surface of his rogues gallery of cabinet appointments.

But even knowing that, our nation’s elites are still tip-toeing around the basic fact that our President is a criminal who broke who knows how many laws. Instead of a national conversation about how we are going to prosecute him, it’s more horse-race nonsense- “Will it hurt Democrats to bring impeachment charges? Can a Trump win in 2020 and outlast the statutes of limitations?”

It’s kind of insane. It’s sort of analogous to when we knew all the Catholic priests were molesting those kids, but people were more afraid of uprooting the church than dealing with the monsters. So people talked in veiled terms and looked the other way, and never dealt with the problem or really held anyone accountable.

The Republicans are so corrupt that even with everything we already know, they will not convict in the Senate. We’re basically just going to have to live with a criminal President until the economy craters and the money guys decide to cut their losses. It’s nuts.

Very Important Jackal Announcement

From the redoubtable, irreplaceable EFGoldman:

I’m home.

After my 90th day in various hospitals and rehabs.

Surgery in October. Some rehab, much farther to go.

No sharing, I don’t do that.

I’ve been weeping for an hour.

I think I speak for the Balloon Juice community: Welcome home!

Sunday Morning Garden Chat: Shutting Down for the Season

As we approach the hinge of the year, some reminders of better days, from the indefatigable & gifted Ozark Hillbilly:

We had a rather colorful Fall, with each tree in turn, turning its appropriate colors. As usual the oaks were mostly on the subdued side but the dogwoods, maples, and hickories more than made up for them.

Peak color came in the 1st week of November. (I remember when the 3rd-4th week of October was peak color. Global warming anyone?)

Then our first snow came on November 8th, followed by the 2nd on the 11th, and the 3rd on the 14th.

At top: I have several stands of maples and a few of pines. This pic captured the best of both.

Our dogwoods were special this year, taking on many colors.

A view of one of my stands of maples looking down a holler.

I planted Mexican Sunflowers for the first time this year. While I was disappointed in how they propagated, I was not disappointed in the pollinators they drew.

“I’m not dead yet!”

By the 2nd measurable snow fall, my mums, and my garden, had succumbed.

Late Night Trump Movies: Recycled SF/Fantasy Genre

To continue tonight’s theme…

A growing number of Republicans fear that a battery of new revelations in the far-reaching Russia investigation has dramatically heightened the legal and political danger to Donald Trump’s presidency — and threatens to consume the rest of the party, as well.

President Trump added to the tumult Saturday by announcing the abrupt exit of his chief of staff, John F. Kelly, whom he sees as lacking the political judgment and finesse to steer the White House through the treacherous months to come.

Trump remains headstrong in his belief that he can outsmart adversaries and weather any threats, according to advisers. In the Russia probe, he continues to roar denials, dubiously proclaiming that the latest allegations of wrongdoing by his former associates “totally clear” him.

But anxiety is spiking among Republican allies, who complain that Trump and the White House have no real plan for dealing with the Russia crisis while confronting a host of other troubles at home and abroad…

The White House is adopting what one official termed a “shrugged shoulders” strategy for the Mueller findings, calculating that most GOP base voters will believe whatever the president tells them to believe.

But some allies fret that the president’s coalition could crack apart under the growing pressure. Stephen K. Bannon, the former Trump strategist who helped him navigate the most arduous phase of his 2016 campaign, predicted 2019 would be a year of “siege warfare” and cast the president’s inner circle as naively optimistic and unsophisticated.

“The Democrats are going to weaponize the Mueller report and the president needs a team that can go to the mattresses,” Bannon said. “The president can’t trust the GOP to be there when it counts . . . They don’t feel any sense of duty or responsibility to stand with Trump.”…


He’s your very special chosen leader, my GOP dudes. You own him, and he owns you.

Even (especially) the marketing failures.

Night At the Movies Open Thread: #TrumpCrimeMovies

Gonna be hard to beat this first one:

Saturday Night Open Thread

Here’s handsome Mr. Badger snuggled up in a pile of Mexican blankets:

No reason he should be chilly — it’s 69 degrees F right now, but apparently he’s a Miami terrier rather than the Boston variety. He really is a wimp about the cold — shivers like mad if it drops below 70 F.

Because I’m an idiot, I bought a car today. I gave my vintage Caddy to the spawn because the terrible dirt road we have to traverse now that we live in the howling wilderness would have eventually killed poor old Cruella DeVille, and I bought a little Jeep.

First new car I’ve ever purchased! (I don’t count the pickups the mister and I have acquired over the years since, although they were technically partially mine, I wasn’t the primary driver.)

Please don’t tell me terrible things about Jeeps in comments. The “Car & Driver” review of my model said it was rugged off road but “slow as a three-legged turtle.” Whatever, man.

Open thread!

Army-Navy Open Thread

Go Army! Beat Navy!