PHRASING! Open Thread: “Water Sports”

Not the Onion:

Proximate excuse cause:

A veritable who’s who of right-wing con artists, alt-right media hounds, and outright racists apparently plan to hold some sort of Art Basel for Grifters conference in Miami this month. An avalanche of some of the worst pundits online — including at least one fascist — say they’ll hold a “Demand Free Speech” rally Saturday, September 28, on an undisclosed yacht somewhere in the Magic City.

The event’s top billing? Serial con artist Jacob Wohl, who is charged in California with a felony for unlawfully selling investments in a company called Montgomery Assets, will apparently debate Nick Fuentes, a self-described “American nationalist” who has appeared on white-nationalist programs and at one point was recorded going on an anti-Semitic rant about a fellow conservative blogger by calling him a “race traitor” and saying he “worked for Jews.” It’s unclear what Wohl and Fuentes might actually debate, but the event seems designed more to generate protests and controversy than to conduct intellectual discussions…

… [T]ickets are being sold on the website, which is run by Enrique Tarrio, a Miami native who leads the neofascist Proud Boys group. “Early-bird” VIP tickets cost $150 for whatever reason. Among the other guests, the group says Zoe Sozo, an ambassador for the campus conservative group Turning Point USA, will also attend…

My personal bet would be that these clowns haven’t so much as charted a boat — once enough ‘VIP tickets’ have been sold, they’ll announce that ‘the (((globalists))) have forced us to reschedule to an as-yet-to-be-determined date, for the safety of our supporters’. And as proof: Secret Service agents on jetskies!

Late Night KKKlown Car Open Thread: The GOP Retreat (But Trump Found Them Anyway)

Even though it meant not live-tweeting during the DNC’s Houston debate, where he was guaranteed a (considerably less flattering) large audience. Per the Washington Post:

With the president speaking here Thursday to a closed-door retreat of House Republicans, scores of protesters gathered to express opposition to White House policies and outrage at Trump’s recent tweets calling Maryland’s largest city “the Worst in the USA.”

The visit by the president — who maligned Baltimore as a “disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess” where “no human being would want to live” — was limited to a dinnertime speech kicking off the GOP retreat at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel in Harbor East.

House Republicans selected Baltimore as the location for their three-day conference long before the president’s attack on the city, where Democrats outnumber Republicans 10 to 1. Well before the White House announced that Trump would attend the conference, a coalition of advocacy groups calling themselves the Baltimore Welcoming Committee had planned days of rallies to protest GOP policies on immigration, climate change and other topics. There was to be a singalong, a light show and a dance party. Organizer Sharon Black said Trump’s scheduled appearance “upped the ante.”

“This is about the remarks about Baltimore and his policies. You can’t really separate the two,” she said…

Of course, Donny Dollhands goes nowhere without a few of his devoted sycophants…

Read more

Late Night PopCult Open Thread: Nobody Respects the Classics Any More…

And if they’re gonna reboot Hee-Haw again, you’d think they’d at least line up some decent muscial acts for the announcement…

Late Night Sad Trombone Open Thread: The Boston ‘Straight Pride’ Parade

You know the ‘straight pride’ luzers have themselves an image problem when they choose a parade marshal whose profession is being gay, but right-wing. Sam Bishop’s twitter feed includes shots from the whole sad performance. Per the Boston Globe:

Outdone by numbers and noise from thousands of protesters, a few hundred marchers in a controversial Straight Pride Parade were jeered and heckled Saturday afternoon during a mile-long procession from Copley Square to City Hall Plaza.

“Shame on you!” many of the protesters yelled as the parade, flanked by hundreds of police officers, passed block after block of security barricades on normally busy downtown streets, which had been closed for the event.

After the rally ended at 4 p.m., some of the protesters turned their anger toward the mayor and police, whom they assailed for allowing the parade and then protecting the marchers…

Boston police reported 36 arrests, but spokesman Sergeant John Boyle gave no details. Four police officers suffered non-life-threatening injuries, he said.

Mayor Martin J. Walsh, who was attending a Jump Into Peace event in Roxbury, said the march “is not any representation of who we are as a city.”

About 600 protesters outnumbered an estimated 200 marchers after the parade reached City Hall Plaza, where police kept protesters behind barricades about 200 feet from a concert stage where the Straight Pride rally was held…

Parade organizer Mark Sahady is part of Resist Marxism, a group founded by an alt-right leader that has a history of violence. That group had helped organize a “free speech” rally in Boston in 2017 that critics said attracted white nationalists.

The grand marshal was Milo Yiannopoulos, a former Breitbart editor who has been banned from Facebook and Twitter for hate speech, was among several speakers at the rally…

So Sahady and his little buddies succeeded in wasting a ton of the city’s money protecting them from the abuse they were demanding, and ramping up the tension another notch between the cops and the ‘counter-culture’. Which was what they were hoping for, after all, so at least they have *that* consolation.

GOP Clown Car Open Thread: The Pence v. Haley Undercard

A point & mock diversion from all the potentially deadly battles. If fighting amongst themselves wasn’t absolutely a feature of every mad autocrat’s court, I’d blame this minor fooferaw on would-be macher Nick Ayers. Politico:

While the two could hardly be more different — Pence is a 60-year-old social conservative, she is a 47-year-old daughter of Indian immigrants — those close to them say they have long had a warm relationship. Haley traveled to Indiana in 2012 to help Pence with his gubernatorial campaign, then returned three years later to headline a state GOP dinner while he was embroiled in a competitive reelection race.

The two also shared an adviser in Nick Ayers, a prominent consultant who spent four years as executive director of the Republican Governors Association. And their offices gave them access to the same pool of powerful donors who fund races for governor.

The recent divisions have been fueled partly by the rumors that Haley could replace Pence on the ticket and the fact she took so long to address them. Some top Pence aides said they think Haley or an ally was behind the Wall Street Journal op-ed, which a representative for the former ambassador denied…

Further complicating the dynamic between Pence and Haley is the role of Ayers, who remains close to both. Senior Republicans want to see whether the 37-year-old operative, who stepped down as Pence’s chief of staff at the end of last year to return to his native Georgia, picks one over the other.

Former colleagues of Ayers, who has deep ties to the donor class, say he hasn’t chosen sides. He speaks with Pence and Haley regularly and was seen with both at the Aspen retreat, which was hosted by the RGA. A few weeks later, Ayers and Pence appeared together onstage before a national group of young conservative leaders.

The skirmish offers a potential preview of what’s in store for the GOP after 2020 — a fight over the direction of the party. Pence has been the president’s most unwavering ally since he joined the ticket in 2016, even when Trump’s policies and personal conduct veered far from the principles Pence had long been known for. Haley, who endorsed Marco Rubio in 2016 and was critical of Trump during the campaign, has shown a willingness to break from the administration. She has urged the GOP to be more inclusive, representing potentially a new direction for the party…

TL, DR — In their hearts, none of these people expect Trump to win reelection, even assuming he makes it to 2020, so they’re already prepping to carve up the remnants of the GOP for their own profit. Good news for us Democrats, as far as I’m concerned.

Read more