Friday’s Forum

James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Whew… I was beginning to wonder if I was stuck in the past. 😉 A few quick hits:

    A federal judge in Texas has thrown out the state’s ban on people aged 18 to 20 carrying handguns in what appears to be the first major judicial decision since a landmark ruling on weapons rights by the US supreme court in June.

    We are so screwed.

    From Revealed: leaked video shows Amy Coney Barrett’s secretive faith group drove women to tears comes this little jewel:

    “Pregnancy teaches a woman that others have a claim on her very person for the service of life. Rather than annihilating her, pregnancy makes her a new person, radiant and strong: a mother,” she (Dorothy Ranaghan) wrote.

    Sounds just wonderful for women.

    ‘This you?’: the seven letters exposing rightwing hypocrisy If you enjoy pointing and laughing.

  2. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Lachlan Murdoch was never much of an inspirational figure in the pantheon of news publishing, having secured his place at the helm of Fox News by a process of primogeniture.

    His defamation action against Crikey, a relatively modest but worthwhile online subscription news and commentary service, reveals much – about ego, the drift of American politics and media, and defamation law itself.

    It seems incongruous that the chief executive of the most watched cable network in the US and co-chairman of News Corp, with its global stable of newspapers, would be so troubled by an opinion piece published down under.

    Succour has been added to the calls for an inquiry into the influence in this country of the Murdochs and the concentration of mainstream media voices. The process of pretrial discovery could produce hitherto unknown information about the operations of Fox News that, at the least, prove embarrassing to the proprietors and further fuel a backlash against their corporate interests.

    There is a sense among those who have watched the evolving litigation at 10 paces that here is someone whose own very skewed and shouty media organisation can dish it out with impunity, but he can’t take it if a minnow does the same.

    It’s not an attractive quality, not that unattractive qualities necessarily tip the balance in a defamation court.
    At first blush there seems to be plenty of material to mount a strong defence to Murdoch’s claim. And it will be interesting to see how the applicant, hypersensitive as he appears to be, fares under sustained cross-examination.

    Quite possibly, this case might lie alongside Wilde v Queensberry, Porter v ABC, Streisand v Adelman – misconceived adventures in reputation repair.

    In the meantime, Crikey is not wasting a good defamation case. A campaign sees new subscriptions pouring in and the till filling with fresh cash for the fight ahead.

    I hope Murdoch gets thoroughly skewered.

  3. de stijl says:

    I’m thinking about getting a cat. A wee bit gun shy. That is one of those things you need to go into fully committed and take it super seriously. You can’t half-ass. Where (and how) I live, a dog would be too much. I’m going to think on it.

    You are signing up for a major responsibility.

    My last cat, which was a few decades back, he was strictly indoors and he freaked out when outdoors. He would crouch down and look up at the sky and be like “Where is the ceiling?!? I’m freaking out here, man!”

    Although he freaked out when being outside, he freaking loved going on car trips. Cars have ceilings – he was okay. He would stand on the front edge of the passenger seat and put his paws up on the dashboard and watch EVERYTHING. Especially on the freeway. “I’m going so fast! This is so fucking awesome!” He was as focused and attentive as one could possibly be. Blew his brain.

    It made me laugh so hard it became a driving hazard. What a cool little dude.

  4. MarkedMan says:

    @de stijl: Wow. Most cats hate being in a car. Mine does.

  5. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @MarkedMan: Mine howls. Of course, the only time she is in the car/truck is when she is going to the vet. That might have something to do with it.

  6. OzarkHillbilly says:

    The oldest houseboat on the canals of Amsterdam is being removed after being left unable to pass under the low bridges around it.

    The Dogger, built in 1865, is a former watership that transported drinking water to the city’s breweries. It is believed to have moved into the Prinsengracht canal in 1888. The vessel is said by its owner, Jeroen Elsen, 55, to be uninsurable. One reason is that it cannot sail out of the canal for repairs as it is too tall for the bridges around it. The Dogger’s bottom has not been out of the water in 134 years, when it should be take out every seven years. The rusty exterior of the boat suggests long-term neglect.
    Attempts to secure insurance had failed, he said. “They asked on the phone: ‘How long has the boat been out of place?’ I say: ‘1888.’ ‘1988?’ ‘No, 1888.’ Then the conversation was over. Uninsurable.”

    Inevitable, but still sad.

  7. Scott says:

    A little Friday history. Nothing to be alarmed about.

    The US military is still missing 6 nuclear weapons that were lost decades ago

    Over the decades, the U.S. military has had 32 nuclear accidents, also called “Broken Arrow” incidents. These incidents include accidental launches, radioactive contamination, loss of a nuclear weapon or other unexpected events involving nuclear weapons. Luckily, of those 32 accidents, there were only six U.S. nuclear weapons that could not be located or recovered, and of those six weapons, only one was capable of a nuclear detonation when it was lost.

  8. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Hungary officials warn education is becoming ‘too feminine’

    Jiminy xmas, the right is terrified of everything.

  9. OzarkHillbilly says:


    “Compared to the Soviet Union, the U.S. record is pretty impressive, given how many nuclear weapons it has operated and transported everywhere over the years,” Hans Kristensen, director of the Nuclear Information Project for the Federation of American Scientists, told Task & Purpose.

    Oh well, that makes me feel better. Don’t you?

  10. Stormy Dragon says:

    Schadenfreude watch:

    Apparently Warner Brothers Discovery is such a financial mess that they’re having trouble releasing movies because they can’t pay for any marketing. And since they can’t release movies, they’re having a hard time getting more money…

  11. Stormy Dragon says:

    Schadenfreude watch II:

    Proud Boys founder Gavin McInnes getting arrested by the FBI in the middle of his podcast:

    Although I can’t imagine if a non-white domestic terrorist got arrested, he’d be allowed to stand there negotiating whether it was a convenient time.

  12. Kathy says:

    Babylon 5 quotes I’d forgotten:

    After Londo gets himself placed in the same cell as G’Kar, out of solidarity, G’Kar thanks him. Then:

    Londo: You would have done the same for me.
    G’Kar: Yes, but I’m a much better person.

  13. charon says:

    @Stormy Dragon:

    Why does that make you happy. I actually like a lot of stuff on HBO/HBOMax, would hate to see them scale back.

  14. Stormy Dragon says:


    After the way Zsalav treated his creatives the last few weeks, I want him to watch his empire crumble before him.

  15. OzarkHillbilly says:


    I think I could make a credible case that the officers and directors of a company that decide to contract with Trump are breaching their duty of care, so well-established a deadbeat he is.

  16. Reformed Republican says:

    The G’Kar/Londo relationship was one of the best on TV.

    I tried to rewatch B5 on HBO Max last year, but I kept running into episodes where the sound was not in sync with the video, and I couldn’t find a fix. Eventually I gave up. All this talk is making me consider trying yet again. Maybe the issue has been fixed.

  17. Beth says:


    Fellas, is learning gay?

  18. Scott says:

    @Reformed Republican: @Kathy:

    I didn’t know it was on HBO Max until Kathy mentioned it. Inspired me to start rewatching it for the first time in a long time. It holds up pretty well. I haven’t experienced any syncing issues.

    I find it interesting that so many people on this site are B5 fans. I would hazard a guess that this is so out of proportion to the general population.

  19. charon says:

    @Stormy Dragon:

    Maybe concentrate your schadenfreude on what happens to CNN now, I can not imagine slanting furthur right does anything good for their credibility or viewership.

    (Poaching viewers from Fox NC na ga hoppen).

  20. Jim Brown 32 says:

    So who’s going to put a couple Billboards up in MTGs district about the 180K loan she had forgiven? That probably 6x the median income of her constituents.

    This is how you punch these people in the face and make home base less permissible.

  21. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Wow. Just wow. (pic)

  22. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Beth: From the way some men proudly parade their ignorance, it would appear they think so.

  23. Kylopod says:

    @Beth: According to Nick Fuentes and Nelson Muntz’s buddies, there is nothing more gay than a guy kissing a girl.

  24. Kylopod says:
  25. Kathy says:

    @Reformed Republican:

    Then maybe this will be appropriate.


    I usually have the close caption on for various reasons. In the pilot ep, The Gathering, the scene where Lyta sees Kosh arriving in B5, Sinclair greets him and he replies “Entil’Zha Valen.” But in the close caption it says “Speaking alien language.”

    Granted most people will forget this by the time it becomes relevant in season 3.

    Trivia: in the original release of the pilot, Kosh doesn’t say this. It was added for the DVD release.

  26. CSK says:

    Spoken like someone who can’t get a woman into bed.

  27. Kylopod says:

    @CSK: Back on the Simpsons, it was said by children. It’s long been a favorite Simpsons moment for me, because despite the absurdist humor on the show, this was one line I could seriously imagine a kid actually saying. For a lot of people, the phrase “That’s so gay” that was popular throughout the ‘90s didn’t have anything to do with who you wanted to have sex with, but instead referred to a failure to live up to a certain ideal of tough, stoic masculinity, which actually conflicts with the tenderness and vulnerability normally associated with boy-girl romance.

  28. Jen says:

    Well, this at least sheds some light on why Trump thinks that US government property is “his”: he is listening to the execrable Tom Fitton of Judicial Watch.

  29. Lost in Quebec says:


    Hungary officials warn education is becoming ‘too feminine’

    They also dislike bad weather forecasting-

    Two top officials with Hungary’s National Meteorological Service (NMS) were fired Monday after severe storms they had forecast for the capital on the country’s most important national holiday did not materialize, instead passing to the south.

    The forecast called for intense storms in Budapest around 9 p.m. local time, according to reporting from the Associated Press, leading organizers to postpone a massive annual fireworks display. The fireworks show celebrating St. Stephen’s Day, a holiday that marks the country’s founding, is usually watched by more than a million people.

    Two top officials with Hungary’s National Meteorological Service (NMS) were fired Monday after severe storms they had forecast for the capital on the country’s most important national holiday did not materialize, instead passing to the south.

    The forecast called for intense storms in Budapest around 9 p.m. local time, according to reporting from the Associated Press, leading organizers to postpone a massive annual fireworks display. The fireworks show celebrating St. Stephen’s Day, a holiday that marks the country’s founding, is usually watched by more than a million people.

    After the errant forecast, Hungarian media criticized the agency. The NMS issued an apology on its Facebook page the next day, but it was too late to save the jobs of the agency’s chief, Kornelia Radics, and her deputy, Gyula Horvath.

    They could have just started the fireworks at 4 a.m. in the morning like they did in Atlanta once.

  30. Flat Earth Luddite says:

    Ffffffff… WOW.
    But that opening shot of the shark. No. Just no. Not that close

    *The fff noise is me sucking my teeth in admiration -with a hint of jealousy.

  31. CSK says:

    Trump only listens to crackpots who tell him what he wants to hear.

  32. Jen says:

    @CSK: The more amusing aspect of that is that Fitton is using a case he lost as grounds for this argument. He sought to have documents from Bill Clinton’s time in office subject to a FOIA request and was turned down by a judge. So, he’s arguing that if those documents weren’t part of the public record, Trump’s shouldn’t be either.

    The information he was seeking from the Clinton WH were interviews with a reporter for a book. Trump was holding onto clearly historical records/government property.

  33. Mister Bluster says:
  34. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Beth: Sadly, that has been a thing since before I started school in some corners of this “Greatest of All Nations on God’s Green Earth [TM].”+

  35. CSK says:

    Lawrence O’Donnell is predicting that today will be the worst day of Trump’s life.

  36. wr says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: “The oldest houseboat on the canals of Amsterdam is being removed after being left unable to pass under the low bridges around it.”

    I only regret I won’t be around in 150 years to see this happen to Jeff Bezos’ super-yacht.

  37. CSK says:

    Well, neither will Bezos, if that’s any consolation.

  38. Jen says:

    People on Twitter, all excited/anticipatory about the unsealing of the affidavit–they realize these documents are going to look like a zebra ran through an oil slick, right? “Heavily redacted” is the likely situation. We’ll be lucky if there are a dozen full sentences, I think.

  39. CSK says:

    About 2/3 of it appears to be blacked out.

  40. CSK says:
  41. Mikey says:

    @Jen: I’m reading the affadavit. Yes, there are significant sections of redaction, but there are more than a dozen full sentences, and what we see is very interesting indeed.

    I’m at the part where the affiant agent is describing what was in the 15 boxes that had already been returned to NARA in January 2022. Here you go:

    From May 16-18, 2022, FBI agents conducted a prelimina1y review of the
    FIFTEEN BOXES provided to NARA and identified documents with classification markings in
    fourteen of the FIFTEEN BOXES. A prelin1ina1y triage of the documents with classification
    markings revealed the following approximate numbers: 184 unique docmnents bearing
    classification markings, including 67 documents marked as CONFIDENTIAL, 92 documents
    marked as SECRET, and 25 documents marked as TOP SECRET. Fm1her, the FBI agents
    observed markings reflecting the following compa11ments/dissemination controls: HCS, FISA,
    ORCON, NOFORN, and SI.

    Here’s how the NARA referral to DoJ described the condition of the above:

    The NARA Referral stated that
    according to NARA’s White House Liaison Division Director, a preliminary review of the
    FIFTEEN BOXES indicated that they contained “newspapers, magazines, printed news articles,
    photos, miscellaneous print-outs, notes, presidential correspondence, personal and post-
    presidential records, and ‘a lot of classified records.’ Of most significant concern was that highly
    classified records were unfoldered, intermixed with other records, and otherwise unproperly [sic]

    Our nation’s most sensitive secrets were stuffed in a box with newspaper clippings.

    And of course this should be obvious:

    Based upon this investigation, I believe that the STORAGE ROOM, FPOTUS’s
    residential suite, Pine Hall, the “45 Office,” and other spaces within the PREMISES are not
    cunently authorized locations for the storage of classified information or NDI. Similarly, based
    upon this investigation, I do not believe that any spaces within the PREMISES have been
    authorized for the storage of classified information at least since the end of FPOTUS ‘s
    Presidential Administration on January 20, 2021.

    I haven’t heard much from the “RELEASE THE AFFADAVIT!” crowd. I wonder how they’re rationalizing the contents of the affadavit.

  42. CSK says:
  43. Scott says:

    @Mikey: My thought is that I would also want to know who packed those boxes, who handled the documents (at both ends), and whether they were cleared to do so.

    You know that Trump didn’t bend down, packed, and picked up any boxes. That’s for the little people.

  44. Kathy says:


    What the deplorables want are the names of the agents involved, so they can be harassed and threatened.

  45. Jay L Gischer says:

    I dunno, I feel as though whatever it is that this group Amy Coney Barrett belongs to ascribes to and advances, it isn’t the notion that moms should stay at home and serve their families.

    Of course, y’all are reacting to associations that are very reasonable. Your suspicions have a basis.

    AND, I happen to think the not just women, but men, would do well to engage themselves in service. I spent 20 years teaching martial arts for no pay. Because I enjoyed engaging with people, children, teens and adults on a topic of how to improve themselves and do better in life. And since we practice “kodenkan” – the advanced student teaches the less-advanced student – they get asked to serve others, to serve the school, and serve the ryu.

    This is such an explicit commitment that when women come in (and the shool head was a woman) they can accept it as applying to all humans. But I can imagine few other contexts where a woman would be able to receive the message “commit yourself to some service” from a man in the world we live today.

    So I could expect some might try to advance this idea in a women-only group. It could easily have other problems.

    By the way, I didn’t watch the video. I’m not super interested in watching women cry.

  46. CSK says:

    Oh, absolutely.

  47. CSK says:

    Trump isn’t physically capable of bending down, much less picking up a box.

  48. Mu Yixiao says:

    Y’all can rest easy, folx. The US government has determined that you are not allowed to trademark the word “fuck”–because it’s too popular. 🙂

  49. Mister Bluster says:

    @Mu Yixiao:..well sexual intercourse me runnin’

    I invented that word. Starts with F and ends in UCK and it’s not fire truck…

  50. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Mister Bluster: An all time favorite of mine, I quote it often.

  51. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @wr: Heh. You and me both.

  52. Joe says:

    @Mikey: I am very curious about the FPOTUS’s hand written notes on some of the top secret documents.

  53. CSK says:
  54. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Joe: Stick men doodles. Maybe some stick dog doodles too. Probably naked stick lady doodles. And of course the occasional “I hate Jared.” and “I hate junior.” and “Eric is such a pansy.”

  55. Scott says:

    @CSK: This really grabbed me:

    In lieu of an exit question, go read this hair-raising story at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette about “Anna de Rothschild” of the famous Rothschild family, who visited Mar-a-Lago several times over the past year and schmoozed with VIPs there. She managed to have her picture snapped with Trump and Lindsey Graham during a golf event at one point. Her real name turns out to be Inna Yashchyshyn; she’s a Russian-speaking immigrant from Ukraine. She’s also now the subject of an FBI investigation.

  56. JohnSF says:

    Well, it’s official.
    UK energy price cap up by 80%
    From October typical annual bill will be £3,549.
    Next cap shift in January expected to go to £5,387.
    April 2023 to £6,616.

    The knock effects are horrendous:
    – Much discretionary spending will be swallowed up by these bills
    (OK folks, we can stop worrying about demand driven inflation LOL *sob*)
    – Uncapped bills for businesses already driving some towards closure
    Fertiliser producers shuttering: meaning likely CO2 shortage with major implications .

    Yes folks, the fertiliser IS about to hit the fan! LOL *sob*

    This is really, really bad.

    Meanwhile, Boris Johnson continues to do sod all, while Truss and Sunak seem most interested in manoeuvring against each other.

  57. CSK says:

    The whole story is even more appalling. It’s all over the place now if you can’t access the Pittsburgh paper.

  58. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @CSK: A telling statement from the high journalistic integrity-ish anchor from the end of the interview (from memory)

    the point is that you can’t trust these people; they lie and plant evidence for a living.

    And this show wasn’t even Hannity or Tucker Usedtowearabowtie but looked to be a “straight” news show.

  59. Gustopher says:

    @de stijl:

    I’m thinking about getting a cat. A wee bit gun shy. That is one of those things you need to go into fully committed and take it super seriously. You can’t half-ass.

    As soon as someone says something about cats being a responsibility, I just want to hand them a cat or two. They’re clearly not cruel, and cats are happily in all kinds of homes from “he’s my buddy” to “I have a wild animal in my home, who I feed.”

    If you’re not sure you want a long term commitment, might I recommend a senior cat? You can even do kitty hospice if you want to get that commitment down to under a year!

    (I used to adopt terminally ill cats. There are lots of obvious drawbacks, so that is not really a serious suggestion.)

  60. CSK says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:
    Indeed. Jesse Watters really, really didn’t want to hear what Kessler had to say.

  61. Joe says:

    @de stijl and Gustopher: You can also foster pets who are coming out of their human’s hospice situations. I fostered three dogs that way before I decided to hang onto the third (pictured). The first two were a reminder of the level of responsibility.

  62. Jen says:

    Those people who Gov. DeSantis grandstanded on the backs of last week? You remember, his attempt to “prove” how “necessary” spending tons of FLA taxpayer dollars on to root out “fraud”?

    Many of them were sent letters by local election boards and other official entities that they HAD THE RIGHT TO VOTE.

    In the days since the announcement, however, several of those arrested have told media outlets or authorities that they had no idea they were not eligible to vote. In court documents filed in five counties, most say at least one official government body — in most cases a local election supervisor — incorrectly indicated to them they could vote, including allowing them to register and sending them voter cards in the mail.

    How very aggravating, particularly since many (all?) of them are now back in the criminal justice system based on this very infraction.

  63. CSK says:

    I hope at least some of them kept the letters telling them they were eligible to vote.

  64. Mu Yixiao says:

    @de stijl:

    If you’re gun-shy, might I suggest fostering? There are a lot of animals that need temporary homes until they can find a forever home. If, while fostering the first, you decide “nope, not for me anymore”, then you just don’t foster anymore. If you like it, you can continue until you no longer feel like doing so. Or… if one of the fosters really calls out to you, you can claim it as your own.

    Think of it as “rent-to-own” for a cat. 😀

  65. Mu Yixiao says:

    Nebraska school shuts down student newspaper over LGBTQA+* editorials.

    Apparently, nobody in the administration has heard of this niche thing called “the internet” or this rare item known as a “website”. For $25/year domain registration (less for longer durations), and $10/mo they can publish online. They’re reach far more people, they’ll have full editorial control, and the administration can’t do shit.

    And I guarantee that there are multiple professional journalists who will be more than happy to mentor these kids.

    * Okay… someone needs to hire a PR firm to come up with a better term than that alphabet soup. Hell, just embrace “queer” (a term that nobody can seem to define) as the catch-all.

  66. wr says:

    @JohnSF: Well, the good news is that Liz Truss is going to cut taxes for rich people, so that should take care of everything.

  67. JohnSF says:

    Interesting chart from the New Statesman (article; tweet of chart)
    Basic takeaway: if Truss sticks to her guns she’ll be pitched out of office by riots and Privy Council intervention.
    Which is why she won’t.
    Then the idiot ERG Brexity/Torybertarian/pseudo-Thatcherite/idiot faction (who are, as I may have mentioned, f’in’ idiots) will revolt. Again.
    Then, odds on for an emergency election, or else the irresistible force of popular outrage meets the immovable object of ERG idiocy.

    Pitchforks. Torches. Tar. Feathers. Rope. Lampposts.

    (I jest, except that it could actually happen; I really am worried about the consequences of this if the Conservatives don’t return to reality PDQ)

    In fact, polling of even the Tory membership shows they think Planet Liz ain’t happening.
    Can’t find link now, but was showing even most CP members think the energy price/inflation crunch was more urgent than tax cuts.
    Problem is, enough will buy Truss on various aspects (“Rishi betrayed Boris”; “Hooray for Brexit!”; “Boo to BoE!”; etc etc) to get her the win.

    After which, how does the silly biddy U-turn as quickly as economic confidence demands?
    ‘Cause if she don’t we are looking at a systemic shock sequence even before Winter.

  68. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Jay L Gischer: Maybe you missed this part:

    “Pregnancy teaches a woman that others have a claim on her very person…”

    I spent decades exploring the voids underground and a time or 17 I risked life and limb but it was a risk I willingly took for… Mostly selfish reasons, but all mankind (well, locals anyway) benefited from my exertions.

    Still nobody ever said they had a claim on my person.

    Fvck ’em.

  69. CSK says:

    PoP consists of Roman Catholics, Episcopalians, Lutherans, and Methodists.

    It sounds a little tacky for Episcopalians.

  70. Just nutha ignint cracker says:


    How very aggravating, particularly since many (all?) of them are now back in the criminal justice system based on this very infraction.

    Cynic that I am, I wonder if it’s possible that reoffending these people was a feature rather than a bug.

  71. Jay L Gischer says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I didn’t miss that, I just assumed that was someone’s paraphrase or impression of what they taught. Since they ain’t saying.

    And of course, I find that objectionable. Of course, I also think one’s children have a claim on one, regardless of one’s gender.

  72. Beth says:

    @de stijl:

    My mom used to have two cats, one was female and was the most vicious hard-assed hunter I’ve ever seen. No one could touch her except my mom (evil recognize evil) and my younger sister (who could pick the cat up by the tail and swing the cat around over her head with no cat based repercussions). That cat loved being outside and would bring us “presents”. She was so hard and bitter than near the end she started pulling her own teeth out of her head.

    The other cat despised being outside. What he did like, though, was Polish ham. Every time you made a sandwich, he would come booking from where ever to get some. I used to frisbee ham across the room on to his face and he would contentedly eat his way out. He weighed a good, eh, 50-60 pounds. He didn’t give a crap about anything so long as he got his ham.

    Our current cat is is haunted by the ghost of a pissed off old man. He’s afraid of of our new puppy so he hides in the basement and screams his complaints at us. On the rare times he comes and snuggles with me on the couch he loves when I hold him tight against me and grab his face. He sighs and relaxes for like 10 minutes and then gets up and wanders away. I’m pretty sure he’s got anxiety from watching us adopt out all of his brothers and sisters.

    Cats are weird. I think that’s why I like them. I told our local cat lady that I was thinking about getting another kitten. She said that wouldn’t be a problem. I told her that I want the dumbest street kitten free can buy. She said that wouldn’t be a problem.

  73. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @JohnSF: Sure. But what are the odds that Conservatives return to reality without a constituency/membership?

  74. Jax says:

    @Beth: The dumb cats that are very bad at catting are the best cats. I have a special needs cat, Runty, she runs the whole house. All three pounds of her. 😛 She has a birth defect that gave her a smooth tongue, and she’s a medium-haired cat, so she gets shaved 4 times a year. When shaved, she’s not much bigger than a large rat. When she’s got hair, she’s an ELECTRIC NINJA! She sneaks out from under things to smack at your feet, then goes full ninja poof when you start laughing. Funniest, strangest damn cat I’ve ever met. She’s 7 now, and kinda starting to show some age. I hope I get a couple more years with her, at least.

  75. JohnSF says:

    And yet, people who claim to be “libertarian” support this w@nkerei.

    You might think it would occur, to supposed champions of “personal autonomy”, that the moral compass of their preferred party is a few degrees off of true North, here.

  76. JohnSF says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    But what are the odds that Conservatives return to reality without a constituency/membership?

    Dunno, but, I really don’t think the Conservative membership are as far gone into alternative reality as Republicans seem to be.
    And the voter base even less so (remember: in UK membership and base vote can be quite different).
    There are about a quarter (?) who are far Right: the ex-UKIP types, the remnants of the Monday Club, the hardcore racists and class warriors, the far gone Maggie-olators etc.
    Another quarter are just doolally. 🙂

    About half are decent enough folks, but addicted to the property prosperity spiral, and afraid of it popping.
    Or genuinely fearful that a non-Tory government would overturn their comfortable economic/social situation
    (You’d think that history since 1900 would’ve taught ’em that the Labour Party was not intent on dining out on their carcasses).

    Anyway, the Conservatives are at present so far gone into institutional mental incapacity, it’s hard to see a quick way back.

    BUT: people like Ken Clarke, Lord Heseltine, John Major, Anna Soubry, Rory Stewart, Dominic Grieve, David Gauke, Caroline Nokes, Oliver Letwin, Phil Hammond etc. who were purged by Johnson are still out there, and (mostly) still identify as Conservative.

    The Conservative Party, unlike the Trumpified Republicans, has not (yet) crossed the Rubicon into the support of illegality.

    And Conservative voters in”Blue Wall” by-elections and polling appear willing to defect to the Lib-Dems, if the Tories don’t mend their ways.

    That’s a powerful incentive to the local MP, and the Chambers of Commerce, and the Justices of the Peace, to tell the local Party headbangers to sit the f@ck down and shut the f@ck up.

  77. Beth says:


    Other than the shaving party that sounds awesome. Speaking of run the house, I’ve been thinking of getting those like cat shelves that you can attach to your wall and let them climb around. I think that might help the screaming old man if he feels like he can be near by but no one can get him. Or he’ll just scream at us from the high ground.

  78. Jax says:

    @Beth: I have a floor-to-ceiling corner cat tree that’s about 6 ft wide on each side (I’d love to expand it to ceiling walkways to the other corners, but my roof is not that tall….Lord knows what I would do with a vaulted ceiling as far as kitty space!) It does do some good for the ones (I have 9, total) who like to observe and choose when they want to be a part of the party. It gets kinda wild around here, we adopted 3 kittens in May, so the cat tree, the adjacent lego table full of (very expensive) lego dragons, and the tv mounted on the wall occasionally have felines who missed their jumps flying into them.

    Runty disapproves of high-flying shenanigans. All she cares about are T-R-E-E-T-Z, and she knows how it sounds when we spell it out. The other cats don’t. 😛 She also has two favorite groomers when she goes for her shave, she loves those gals. I won’t even make the appointment unless they’re gonna be the ones doing it.

  79. Stormy Dragon says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    Hell, just embrace “queer” (a term that nobody can seem to define) as the catch-all.

    Until recently, “queer” was a slur toward LGBT people, and while some LGBT people have reclaimed that as their identity, there’s also a lot of LGBT people do not like it because there’s a lot of past trauma associated with it.

    As a straight person, you should be very careful about casually throwing that word around. And in any case, we don’t need your input as to what we want to call ourselves.

  80. Mister Bluster says:

    “We’re here, we’re queer” was a mantra in the Castro District when I lived in
    San Francisco 48 years ago.

  81. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @JohnSF: Aha! My clever plan to get you to comment more in depth worked. Bwahahahahahahahahahahahaha!

  82. Mu Yixiao says:

    @Stormy Dragon:

    Until recently, “queer” was a slur toward LGBT people, and while some LGBT people have reclaimed that as their identity, there’s also a lot of LGBT people do not like it because there’s a lot of past trauma associated with it.

    So… we should defer to the most fragile and refuse to take back the word? Despite the fact that a significant part of the “non-cis-hetero” population uses it to describe themselves?

    As a straight person, you should be very careful about casually throwing that word around. And in any case, we don’t need your input as to what we want to call ourselves.

    And there we go.

    I’m hetero{3], so I’m not allowed to have an opinion.

    I used to live in an an amazing apartment building built in the 1920s, where I would chat with the fags{1] referred to the other side of the building as “Dyke Alley”.

    I’d wager that–in my time in theatre and the kink scene–I’ve probably interacted with just as many “non cis hetero” people as you have. I’ve never encountered a single one who objected to terminology–only to intent.

    “We’re here. We’re Queer. Get used to it”.

    That was an exceptional PR campaign. And a significant part of it was because “queer” was a single, simple, unifying word to describe everything that isn’t “hetero cis-gender”.

    LGBTQA+[2] is an alphabet soup that nobody who’s old. boring. uneducated, or mainstream-hetero is going to understand.

    The question is simple:

    Do you want people to accept you? Or do you want to insist on “the proper way to describe you”?

    I fully embrace the spectrum of LGBTQA+[2], and am 100% opposed to anything that prevents members of that continuum from enjoying all the rights and responsibilities afforded to anyone else. Are you really going to plant your flag on defending what’s the “proper” label?

    Because you just gave me pause. I’ve been supporting “queer” rights and culture for over 30 years.

    But.. Hey. If you’d like to alienate an ally because he doesn’t use the words you want him to:

    Fuck you.

    I’m not going to let snowflakes prevent me from advancing civil rights and cultural acceptance.


    [1] That’s what they called themselves. “Christmas is a straight-man’s holiday; we’re fags, we don’t need a reason to shop.”

    [2] Where the fuck is the “+” on the keyboard?

    [3] Am I “straight”? How do you know?