Monday’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. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    Happy Birthday ‘Murka!!!!I mean, come on, what says “5o Nifty United States better than killing and maiming your neighbors over a long Independence Day weekend? 😐

  2. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    –I couldn’t leave without sharing a song I remember learning in grade school:

    I like the United States of America.
    I like the way we all live without fear.
    I like to vote for my choice, speak my mind, raise my voice,
    Yes I like it here.
    I like the United States of America.
    I am thankful each day of the year.
    For I can do as I please, ’cause I’m free as the breeze,
    Yes I like it here.
    I like to climb to the top of the mountain so high,
    Lift my head to the sky,
    And say how grateful am I
    For the way that I’m working, and helping, and giving,
    And doing the things I hold dear.
    Yes I like it, I like it, I like it here.

    Happy Independence Day holiday.

    ETA: I found a rendition of the song on YouTube:

  3. Bill Jempty says:
  4. Bill Jempty says:
  5. Tony W says:

    As an old friend used to say every year: “For a safe and sane Fourth, buy a Fifth on the Third.”

  6. BugManDan says:

    Was just reading this article American scoundrels at the Bulwark. And this surprised me:

    In those days, Supreme Court justices still “rode the circuit,” and Marshall was acting in his capacity as trial judge for the federal circuit court in Virginia.

    speaking of sitting Chief Justice of the SC John Marshall. Maybe this is something we should force SC justices to do in the months not sitting in the SC. Might push them to earlier retirement or graves.

  7. Michael Cain says:

    @Bill Jempty:
    Twitter and its landlord in Boulder, CO have filed suits against each other. The trigger event was the landlord getting an eviction order over unpaid rent. I expect everyone but the lawyers will lose money over this.

  8. DK says:

    Hosting a Trump rally in his South Carolina hometown, Lindsey Graham got booed off the stage by the Republican base of angry, extremist Trump cultists.

    Imagine selling your soul to fascist MAGA hate for nothing. Sad!

  9. CSK says:


    The thing to remember about Trump worshippers is that they hate everyone else, except perhaps for MTG, Lauren Boebert, Kari Lake , and Matt Gaetz.

  10. Kathy says:

    The thing about employing one’s free time on vacation to visit other parts of the city, is that the city retains its normal, heavy traffic. The visit last week to a museum ate up 2:40 minutes of travel time.

  11. Kathy says:


    Imagine selling your soul to fascist MAGA hate for nothing. Sad!

    Maybe it is sad. But there’s no denying that “nothing” is a fair price for Graham’s soul.

  12. Michael Reynolds says:

    I do not own any Eli Lilly stock, to the best of my knowledge. But I am going to pimp Mounjaro.

    I’ve lost a bit over 30 pounds with only minimal effort. Just had all my blood panels done and the endocrinologist was like, um, everything is actually great. I can no longer be considered pre-diabetic. (Which is a bullshit term, but whatever.) The surprise was that my PSA (prostate specific antigen) which was high and had been for a long time, was cut in half. 14 down to 7. The endo was surprised at this. I told him he should get on the phone to Eli Lilly.

    This stuff is amazing. We now have a (very expensive and hard to find) treatment for obesity that may have additional good effects. Of course I have found that whenever the moon is full I lose track of time and wake up covered in blood, but hey, there are always side effects.

  13. Mikey says:

    @Michael Reynolds: The GLP-1 agonists (semaglutide (Wegovy, Ozempic) and tirzepatide (Mounjaro)) are amazing drugs. Besides their primary purposes of diabetes and obesity treatment, they are having additional positive effects–for example, many who take them lose the desire to consume alcohol, which could indicate an anti-addiction property. There’s also some initial indication Ozempic may help in the treatment of Crohn’s disease and other inflammatory bowel diseases.

  14. Mikey says:

    At The Nation, Elie Mystal writes regarding the SCOTUS ruling against public accommodation protections for LGBTQ Americans. His comparison to the abomination that was Plessy v. Ferguson is all too apt.

    The Supreme Court Has Kicked the Door Wide Open to Jim Crow–Style Bigotry

    he conservative cultural movement is based on lies, misinformation, and fantasies. That’s what makes these people so odious when they crawl out from under their rocks and present themselves in the public square: They make stuff up and then demand that their delusions be given pride of place in our objective reality. (There simply is no woke, trans, race-critical monster hiding under their beds who comes out at night and jabs their children with a vaccine that makes them gay. I refuse to pretend otherwise.)

    The problem, of course, is that this fictional conservative universe has very real purchase in the political sphere, where a loud and vocal minority of voters insist on imposing their fever dreams on the rest of us. And, most consequentially of all, it now dominates our legal sphere, where we are saddled by six conservative justices on the Supreme Court who are more motivated by what they saw on Fox News last night than by the laws, the facts, or the Constitution.


    The Supreme Court is not supposed to issue advisory opinions. It is not supposed to rule on fairy tales. The court, according to the Constitution, is supposed to limit itself to ruling only on “cases or controversies.” That means it is supposed to address only real issues in the real world, where real litigants suffered real harm. But none of the issues in 303 Creative are connected to real-world events. Smith’s business is theoretical; her customers do not exist; and the bigotry she longs to visit upon some of them hasn’t actually happened yet. In the legal jargon, Smith’s case should have been dismissed for lack of “ripeness,” meaning that whatever issues Smith thinks she’s talking about are not yet ready for judicial review.

    But, as I said, the goal of the conservative movement is to make their dreams our nightmares. The Supreme Court did hear Smith’s case, and since there were no real factual issues at play, 303 Creative was turned into a canvas for Neil Gorsuch and the five conservatives who joined his majority opinion to simply make up a set of facts so they could get the outcome they desired.


    I’d like to think that 303 Creative will one day be reviled in the same manner as the decision that is its spiritual predecessor, Plessy v. Ferguson. Unlike Gorsuch, I do not think bigotry gets better if Jesus orders you to do it.

    But what 303 Creative shows is that the forces that believe in the Plessy majority’s denial of services never really went away. They were never really defeated. They just waited, and patiently reconstructed the Supreme Court until it would once again protect the rights of bigoted business owners determined to deny services to people they hate.

    Maybe the dream of a pluralistic society based on equality and fairness was the real fairy tale all along.

  15. dazedandconfused says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    Good to hear. I recall you mentioned you are walking more these days as well. This is beyond good vis a vis diabetes. A lot of studies out there on just an hour or two of exercise a week (yeah…in a whole week) goes a long way towards prevention.

    There is another story about why Sumo wrestlers nearly always dodge the disease until they retire. They get it when they stop working out, bigly. Exhausted by their career, they tend to stop exercising completely.

  16. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Michael Reynolds: Yes, they are amazing. My insurance won’t cover Weygovy (it considers weight loss as “cosmetic” and at 71 in a week and a half, I’m inclined to agree) and informed me that my policy will cover Mounjaro if my A1C is over 8 for the ridiculously low copay of $1040/dose. You live in a different world than the rest of us. I’m happy for you.

  17. Kathy says:

    Over vacation this time I didn’t stream movies, but I did see the two seasons of a new attempt at Perry Mason on HBO Max (it’s still called that here*).

    It wasn’t bad, but 8 eps per case was too much. Maybe not on the first season, where the case is sensational, and it involves wealthy people, a mega church (in the 1930s??), dirty cops, etc. The second did feel stretched out.

    There isn’t much to say without spoilers, except that this isn’t Raymond Burr’s Perry Mason. I don’t mean appearance or attitude, though that’s completely different, but the whole dynamic of the story, from what I can recall from the 80s TV movies and a few eps of the original TV show caught decades later on reruns.

    I liked two things: 1) the 1930s ambiance, and 2) this version of Della Street, played by Juliet Rylance. Performance aside, she’s a more ambitious, more active character. A complete anachronism for the 30s, but so what?

    *For a few days in June, the logo on the smart TV app changed from the purple “HBO Max,” to a blue “max.” Then it changed back.

  18. DK says:


    But there’s no denying that “nothing” is a fair price for Graham’s soul.

    Ouch. Whew!


  19. gVOR10 says:

    @DK: Ahh, but consider the rarity value of Republican souls.

  20. Kylopod says:


    Imagine selling your soul to fascist MAGA hate for nothing.

    Getting to stay in the Senate until he’s 100 isn’t nothing.

  21. Kathy says:

    I had mild success cooking chicken pieces in the cast iron pot.

    In part I forgot to get white wine, and later I forgot to add spices to the broth. the latter was ok, as I’d covered the chicken with a dry rub made of paprika, garlic powder, oregano, fine herbs, pepper, and a little cumin.

    On the other hand, the chicken came out fall-apart tender and moist.

    Also, I placed some potato wedges and cocktail wieners under the chicken pieces. The potatoes cooked perfectly and are very tasty. the little hot dogs, I now wish I’d cut in half lengthwise.

    Now, there are few things worse than boiled chicken skin (even reading it sounds disgusting). So I cooked the pieces skin side down for five minutes, in the same pot, before putting everything in the oven.

    For a side I made white rice with poblano strips, onions, and white corn, with a little grated cheese mixed in.

  22. DK says:


    Getting to stay in the Senate until he’s 100 isn’t nothing.

    Yuck. If the good Lord damned me to hell, He could not conceive a worse punishment for me. But to each her own.

  23. Kylopod says:


    Yuck. If the good Lord damned me to hell, He could not conceive a worse punishment for me. But to each her own.

    I’ve never conceived of politics as a great place for people who give a damn about their dignity. It’s one of the reasons the Trumpification of the GOP is even possible.