Monday, March 27, 2023

There Have To Be Consequences

In my last post, I postulated that we wouldn’t see any charges against TFG on Tuesday like he warned there would be. Well, here we are a week later and we’re in the same place, with no charges filed and the Orange Cretin using all the available oxygen to play the victim.

In a way, I’m kind of bummed that it’s the stripper payoff stuff that’s the first to get him indicted. It’s really the least of his problems. But then maybe that’s why it IS coming out first… to have a cascading effect. You’d have to think that these various prosecutors have made contact with one another for scheduling reasons, if nothing else. We can’t have people in multiple states trying to perp walk him at the same time. It’s not the worst thing to work your way up to the most serious and troublesome violations (like election tampering and treason).

And yes, I know it’s not specifically the payoff that’s got him in trouble, it’s the campaign finance violations. His apologists love to point out that Clinton settled with Paula Jones, but they omit that his deal didn’t involve his campaign or the funding thereof, which is the entire point.

It’s funny that now he’s trying to deny he ever had sex with Stormy Dee. That one can be cleared up in a heartbeat. Have her testify to the characteristics of lil’ mushroom cap and then allow him to provide exculpatory evidence. They did it with Michael Jackson… Or, maybe they can do like they suggested in Porky’s, all those years ago, and set up a whole lineup of lil’ mushroom dicks for her to identify.

“Have you seen this prick?”

Another frequent talking point from TFG defenders revolves around how this is somehow “revenge.” I can see how it may look that way, but when you think about it, there’s no other way it can be. Republicans had a chance to hold him accountable and they refused. Now there’s no one else left but Democrats. The thing is, there absolutely have to be consequences for offenses like the ones he’s being accused of, or else it will never end. Blatant corruption and electioneering will become the new normal. Every charismatic criminal in the nation will fall all over themselves trying to become president, knowing they can raid the entire federal fridge for their own benefit. The people MUST send a message that this won’t be tolerated, no matter what letter comes after the name in question.

I love how they also point out that prosecutors should be processing other crimes instead, as if the existence of one crime precludes prosecuting another. It’s just a red herring. It’s a chance to speechify about how Democrats (of course) let criminals (Black people) run rampant while they harass this innocent (White) businessman. 

Not for nothin', both of those mayors were Black women. More about their mayoral terms here.

The truth is, as a culture, we are not used to rich businessmen getting prosecuted or especially, convicted. Remember that not one banker went to jail due to crashing the economy in 2008. Not one. The upper class doesn’t go to jail in this country unless someone catches them screwing children and it becomes public. (That last part is the determining factor.) They just grab their golden parachute and drop in on an island somewhere, to live like kings.

I don’t blame any of these prosecutors for taking their sweet time. The stakes are too big to hurry. You know the saying… If you take a shot at the king, you’d better not miss. These will be the most scrutinized cases in modern history. They’ll need to have them buttoned up tighter than TFG’s anus on sentencing day. The impeachment cases were buttoned up like that, but unfortunately, the jury was guided by self-interest rather than national interest and disregarded their sworn oaths. They knew were voting to acquit before the trial even started.

Maybe when it gets close to crunch time, Ron DeSantis will throw him a lifeline. All he’d have to do is offer a deal: “If you will drop out of the race, I will prevent your extradition from Florida. Quid pro quo, Fuckboy.

That should at least buy him enough time to hop an Air Vlad flight to Moscow. 

Monday, March 20, 2023

Who's Actually on First?

I have a family member whose birthday is tomorrow (Tuesday, 3/21), and for a second there, I thought I had the perfect present lined up. Who wouldn’t love to see a crooked sack of shit like TFG get arrested, probably on national television, to celebrate a birthday? It would have been perfect if the moment wasn’t so fleeting.

In the time it took me to think, “Hey, maybe his lawyers were told to get prepared,” the next thought was, “Wait, am I seriously going to believe a single thing this guy says? If this guy ever tells the truth, it’s purely by accident.”

Since there’s no official word about anything like that yet, the consensus seems to be that TFG basically pulled that date out of his ass. And I understand why.

If he really wants to trigger another protest, he can’t be vague. A call to such actions needs a deadline. You can’t say, “I need you guys to protest my forthcoming arrest, one of these days,” it’s got to be, “Hey, I need you to start some shit on Monday!

Not that I think there’s going to be anything impactful. If the MAGAs learned anything, it’s that TFG can’t (and won’t) protect them. If they do anything but yell and carry signs, there will be consequences. The law enforcement people won’t be asked to be punching bags this time, it’ll be ON. And they’ve seen how ever-present video gets turned into IDs, and that turns into court cases, jail time, and lost employment. Best to stay in town and shout at the TV from the local bar.

And speaking of noxious vapor, I just can’t wrap my head around all this “America First” nonsense. The MAGAs are basically against spending money to help anyone but Americans. No matter the situation, they want to pretend it’s not our problem. Or at least not their problem.

But like it or not, it’s still a global economy and things that happen outside our borders absolutely affect things within. Name one isolationist country that’s prospering, now or ever.

Not to mention, there are things like upholding basic decency, and the right not to have your cities reduced to rubble by invaders bent on conquest.

But my biggest beef with “America First” is that there is no meat behind the sizzle. How exactly would they want to spend the money that would otherwise be spent on foreign affairs?

Health care for all? Nope, that’s socialism.

Food assistance? Nope, lazy people should go to work (for whatever an employer deems them worthy of paying.)

Student debt relief? Nope, I still have to pay my car loan.

Infrastructure? Nope, they might build something in my backyard. Or worse, they might not. Republicans won’t vote for it, but they’ll be happy to attend the ribbon-cutting ceremonies in their states or districts.

Housing assistance? Nope, not in MY neighborhood.

Free phones and data plans? Nope, that’s a handout.

So no, nothing that will help the lives of lower and middle-class Americans. But…

Border security? Absolutely, we gotta keep the brown foreigners out.

Military? Absolutely, because spending what the next 12 nations in the world spend collectively is just not enough. Even though the money never seems to go for pay raises for soldiers, just more weapons systems, benefitting the giant defense contractors.

Tax cuts for the rich? Absolutely, because, well, they don’t know, but their elected officials sure do. They have to remain elected officials, don’t they, and the money saved from tax cuts can slide right into their re-election funds.

So basically, “America First” means “We want to stop spending money on foreigners so we can give it to the white, male, Americans who already have more than anyone else.”

Headline News

No big surprise here. When was the last time Republicans accepted blame for anything, ever? Do you want to see a complete meltdown? Watch a Republican order a meal at a Republican fundraiser that uses Republican chefs and wait staff, and have it get screwed up. The pathway to lay blame would become an infinity loop. They’d probably have to go out and drag a Mexican inside, so they could blame him. And Biden, by proxy, for letting in the Mexican.

The excuse I keep seeing is that the bank was more concerned with being “woke” than running a sound bank… as if the two are mutually exclusive. They trotted out some hiring parameters used for the bank’s Board of Directors, to prove their point. The problem is that The Board is not really a hands-on group. Any clown can sit on a Board. They deal with big-picture issues, not the day-to-day wheeling and dealing of the other executives, the kind of which put Silicon Valley Bank out of business. It’s just the mundane making risky high-stakes bets with other people’s money, the kind of thing that was outlawed by Dodd-Frank, portions of which were then overturned by the Trump Administration.

“Woke” is now the go-to boogieman for the GOP. Whatever goes wrong, they cry “Woke.” The fact that they won’t define it makes it that much more effective because then everyone can slip in whatever resonates in their own head.

In MY head, it just means that one recognizes that there is racism out there, and sometimes it’s baked into “the system.”

I can give you a concrete example… Do you know what “red-lining” is? It’s an outlawed practice that banks and lending institutions used, wherein they’d draw a “red line” around poor areas of town where they did not want to make loans. They wouldn’t send mailers to that location, advertise, or approve any loan applications that originated there. This happened, and then it was banned. Lending institutions are now required to accept applications from any geographical area within their operating area.

I’m not saying there aren’t other ways to keep defaults and delinquency low, but they are universally applied, rather than restricted to any single area.

This was racism, built into the banking system. Stone cold fact. If it didn’t exist, it wouldn’t have required Congress to draft and pass a law to ban it. That was one, so it’s not beyond reason that there are more.

Of course McCarthy refused to go to Kyiv. He survived January 6th! That’s enough mortal peril for one man. Tourists can be dangerous!

I also think he knows if he went there and actually saw what was going on, he might feel obligated to do something about it, and that would go against his party’s line. (And probably result in an immediate recall vote.)

Ah, who am I kidding? He’d have to have a soul to be affected by such mass suffering, which spineless political automatons like him completely lack. Otherwise, he might realize that fiscal responsibility sometimes has to be put on hold when facing a humanitarian crisis of these proportions.

Ah yes, the time-worn trope that one has to be perfect oneself in order to address an imperfection. Typical Fox “News.” Also, note that the headline says that they were “all questioned” about jet use. People ask questions and that’s a headline? It’s not even a story unless the answers are somehow unusual. And who do you think is asking these questions? Fox, of course.

They ask questions and then tell the audience, “Hey, people are asking questions.”

Look, presidents and cabinet members cannot go traveling around via horse and buggy. They need fast, secure, transportation to carry out the nation’s business. It’s unfortunate but it’s the price of doing that business. It hardly invalidates efforts to rein in CO2 emissions and try to blunt the onrushing effects of climate change.

Although Biden did not do himself any favors by greenlighting the “Willow” project, which opens up some federal land in Alaska for oil drilling. If Fox were writing about that, their argument might have merit. But then drilling in Alaska is what they’ve wanted all along. And they’ll never actually give a Democrat credit for doing something, even if that “something” is exactly what they want. 

Monday, March 13, 2023

Move Along, Nothing to See

I see Tucker Carlson at Fox “News” release his take on what the January 6th videos showed:

It’s laughable that anyone could even put forth with a straight face, the idea that a video showing nothing of importance happening in one place and time, proves that nothing ever happened elsewhere? Even chimps are smart enough to know that kind of argument doesn’t hold water. I know Fox viewers can be convinced of anything they want to believe, but seriously? We all saw what happened live on TV!

The MAGAs were crawling over the Capitol walls like in that scene from Starship Troopers when the giant alien bugs attacked the outpost.

Or in World War Z when the fast zombies attacked the walls in Jerusalem.

Using the “Tucker Method”, we can use video and photographs to prove anything. For example, did you know that World War I never happened? Here’s proof: this is a picture of English and German soldiers celebrating Christmas in 1914.


See? No fighting, no mustard gas, just a Charlie Brown tree and some Christmas caroling.

Also, World War II didn’t happen either. See? Here’s a picture from the South Pacific in 1944.


Bob Hope was doing a show for vacationing tourists. See how everyone’s just sitting around, all nice and calm? There are no tanks or machine guns or missiles, just good times with friends.

The Korean War didn’t happen either. Here’s the ironclad proof:


See, it’s just Bob Hope and a couple of guys hanging out, and having a chat. He’s probably telling them about all the hot sightseeing spots in the Solomon Islands. No guns, no Jeeps, no mobile hospital units where they laugh just to keep from crying.

Viet Nam? An illusion, just some bad PR. This is Viet Nam in 1970:


This is Bob Hope, 26 years into his world tour. He must have been very popular. This looks like a Monsters of Rock concert. I don’t see any napalm or rampant heroin use. Who knows why all the hippies were protesting back home; this looks like fun!

You know, maybe this is how we prove to the MAGAs that BLM protests were predominantly peaceful.

(Spencer Platt-Getty Images)

This is just a nice little parade through Manhattan, certainly not a reason to start billy-clubbing people. No brick-throwing, no buildings on fire, just a stroll through The Big Apple.

Of course, it helps to also be right. The protests were overwhelmingly peaceful. (Not including Portland, obvs.) One should note that the stats say police used force in 9% of BLM protests, but in only 3% of all other demonstrations. Sounds like the BLM crowd got special treatment, which I’m sure has nothing to do with flare-ups of violence.

Yesterday, Speaker McCarthy said that he will “slowly roll out” 1/6 footage to other outlets. I’m sure he needs the time to have his flunkies edit out everything that Tucker decided not to use. Why else would Fox receive the whole trove at once, while everyone else has to wait for installments?

The only footage that should be held back is that which shows secret rooms, paths of egress, and such so that it can’t be used to formulate a more lethal invasion the next time the MAGAs are displeased and decide to take another sightseeing tour of the Capitol.

Ooopsie! This is the Speaker’s office? I thought it was the restroom. Sorry about the mess…”

Monday, March 6, 2023

They Need a Fall Guy

 The MAGA anti-vax nutjobs have been a little more vocal lately, because of that FBI report that they say proves them right about COVID being released from a Chinese lab. The MAGA crowd, who so often claim the FBI is a pack of left-wing freedom stealers, suddenly believe them now about this. (But not about anything else that they don’t want to hear.)

As with most things coming from the right, there’s a grain of truth wrapped in a whole truckload of wishful thinking and bullshit. The report assigns very little confidence in that finding, basically admitting that it’s possible, but the origins are still in question. So once again, we have this huge roar about something that makes very little difference. Or rather, as far as I’m concerned, matters not at all.

Why? Because the origin of the virus, whether it occurred in the wild or was released accidentally or on purpose from a lab, doesn’t change what we had to do to fight it. Whatever the source, the US government had to make a risk assessment, plan a strategy to battle and contain the virus and execute it. The degree to which they did or didn’t has been debated ever since, but none of that hinges on the origin of the virus. It came, we fumbled about for a while, and more than a million Americans died from it, with millions more sickened; sometimes seriously, other times not as much.

I think Republicans desperately want it to be a lab release for one simple reason: blame. They need to be able to blame The Enemy for something that had such a negative effect on the country (and the world). Being able to blame an entity that has been TFG’s favorite punching bag is the cherry on top.

When your chief characteristic is rage, it’s a hard thing to maintain over a naturally occurring process that just sprung up from flora and fauna. What are they going to do, dox Mother Nature? Threaten her job? Cut down her trees? So they need a bad guy, which is why they need COVID to have been man-made, just to have somewhere to aim their rage.

Let the academics work out how COVID got loose so that maybe more effective preventative measures might be used the next time around. But other than that, it just doesn’t matter and there’s no sense even arguing about it.


I saw this back in January and I kept it so I could highlight how bad arguments aren’t only a fault of the Right. Consider this graphic:

Now, I’m upset as anyone about the number of people killed by police entities in this country, but this graphic is not the weapon it should be.

Notice how it labels the data as “fatal shootings by officers and other deaths at the hands of police.”

Were there no deaths at the hands of police that were justified? Any number of these could be police responding to hostage situations, a perp who’s pointing a gun, or shooting at them.

A more effective graph would clearly count the number of killings by police of unarmed people. That’s the real issue that causes strife and unrest (and rightly so). A logical assumption would be that if the numbers were properly narrowed that way, they would have been described as such, but since they weren’t we should assume it counts all killings.

Maybe there’s a better case to be made out there, but this isn’t it.


I found another bad argument seeping into the sports world again, this time regarding some new baseball rules. This year, MLB has installed a more aggressive pitch clock and batter’s clock, which limits how much time batters can spend dicking around at the plate with their batting gloves, how much time pitchers can spend glaring at the catcher, and how many times he can lob the ball over to first base with a runner on.

As with any adaptation to sports rules, there are many “traditionalists” who bristle at attempts to make the game more engaging. I’ve seen several memes illustrating this point:

The logical counterpoint here is that yes, there’s a delay on that one pitch, but that’s just time invested in preventing MORE wastes of time. You lay down the law once, then the rest of the game speeds up. This is not a complicated concept but it seems to be one these meme creators aggressively ignore. It’s another one of those things that you can yell at the TV down at the bar and the rest of the drunks can nod along in agreement.

Personally, I’m all for anything that will speed the game up a bit. I’ve seen some say that when they’re at the game, they don’t care how long it takes. But I’m sure there are even more there who have actual lives. I’ve seen a ton of baseball games and most of them are night games, just because there are so few day games even scheduled. Most games start at about 7:10. A three-hour game will wrap up around 10:00 PM, with gives people time to get out of the park and back home before 11:00, to get some sleep before getting up in the morning to go to work.

They’re never going to be able to eliminate the occasional long game due to an explosion of hitting and scoring. But that’s the fun stuff to watch, isn’t it? What you DON’T want to see is an extra hour of guys stepping out of the batter’s box, loosening and refastening their gloves, then stepping back in. And then watching the pitcher step off the mound, fiddle with his hat, rub on the ball some more, then climbs back to look in for more signals. Everyone needs to stop jerking around, get in there and play. If the umps call a penalty ball or strike, so be it. Let that light the fire under everyone’s ass to keep things moving. Some of us have to get up in the morning.


It was with a heavy heart that I saw the news this morning of the passing of one of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s founding members, Gary Rossington. Skynyrd’s music was part of every party we ever threw in high school and college. Even my dad used to love dancing to Gimme Three Steps.

I was lucky to be able to meet them many years ago and in another life, back when I was a record store manager. (Remember those?) My buddy and I went to see their big 1987 reunion tour in Cleveland, their first tour since the plane crash. After the show, the MCA rep (who got me the tickets) asked us if we’d like to go hang with the band at a small party in their hotel suite. Believe me, we didn’t take long to answer. You can read the whole story, here. I didn’t get to talk to Gary, probably because I was too busy chatting up his wife, but she and the rest of the band were great to us.