Monday’s Forum

Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter


  1. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Virginia GOP Demands Investigation of Professor for Anti-Trump Tweets

    Rich Anderson, the chairman of the Virginia Republican Party wrote to the president of the University of Virginia yesterday. Anderson begins by explaining, “I understand the commitment that public servants make to serving with integrity, dignity, respect, and honor in their taxpayer-funded roles.” The letter concerns Donald Trump, though not in a way that follows intuitively from the premise that public servants must act with integrity, dignity, respect, and honor.

    Anderson’s letter demands UVA open an ethics investigation into Larry Sabato, the director of the school’s Center for Politics. Sabato’s alleged ethics violation is a series of mean tweets from his personal account, concerning Donald Trump.

    Sabato’s tweets are, indeed, pretty mean:


    Anderson’s putative grounds for deeming Sabato’s tweets an ethics violation are a few stray passages from UVA’s Mission Statement, which Anderson outlined in his letter:

    • UVa’s Mission Statement promoting a “learning environment marked by the free and collegial exchange of ideas,” and “unwavering support of a collaborative, diverse community bound together by….values of honor, integrity, trust, and respect;”

    • UVa Center for Politics Mission Statement that states, “Everything we do must fulfill our goal of instilling citizens with an appreciation for the core values of American freedom, justice, equality, civility, and service;” and

    • UVa’s Code of Ethics for Faculty and Staff that states, “[w]e promote an inclusive and welcome community that respects…opinions of all people,” “[w]e treat every individual with kindness, dignity, and respect, regardless of position or status,” “[w]e collaborate with others in a positive and respectful manner,” and “[w]e act and communicate…with integrity, upholding the University’s values at all times.”

    Exactly how Sabato violated any of these guidelines by pointing out that the former president was a deranged narcissist, Anderson does not say. Indeed, if you’re going to take these mission statement nostrums seriously, a line like “Everything we do must fulfill our goal of instilling citizens with an appreciation for the core values of American freedom, justice, equality, civility, and service” would seem to require the University’s staff to oppose Trump.

  2. Kathy says:


    Remember when Republicans were against blasphemy laws?

  3. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Georgian cameraman dies after attack by far-right, anti-LGBTQ mob

    My initial inclination was that it just might be, and I had to read the first couple paragraphs before I was certain they weren’t talking about Georgia, of the good old US of A.
    That says something, either about me or about the current state of conservative politics in this country. Probably both.

  4. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kathy: Noooo… Not in my life time anyway. They did oppose Sharia laws, but only because it was blasphemy to them. One man’s blasphemy is another man’s scripture.

  5. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I should note that the headline on the Guardian’s front page is “Georgia: Cameraman dies after attack by far-right, anti-LGBTQ mob” The headline on the article is Georgian cameraman dies after attack by far-right, anti-LGBTQ mob “ which was the first clue it wasn’t USA. Still, I had to read the first 2 paragraphs before I was sure.

  6. charon says:

    South Dakota did not do any mandates. We trusted our people, gave them all the information and told them that personal responsibility was the best answer.

    “And despite having the same population as San Francisco, we ended up with 4 times as many Covid deaths.”

  7. George says:

    Because the GOP (and a good portion of American white people) seem to be okay with police killing 500+ white people every year, many of them unarmed. It’s about a third the rate the police kill Blacks and Indigenous people, but still 10x the rate European police kill people.

    My guess is that it won’t make a difference, because the white people kill are mostly poor, and class is a bigger divide in North America than race as far as the police are concerned. Seriously, when was the last time a rich person (of any race) was killed by the police?

  8. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Denver: four arrested and weapons seized ahead of MLB All-Star Game

    Four people were arrested and more than a dozen weapons and hundreds of rounds of ammunition seized at a downtown Denver hotel close to several events planned in conjunction with the Major League Baseball All-Star Game.

    The showpiece MLB event takes place on Tuesday at Coors Field. Festivities have been staged in and around the ballpark and downtown for the past several days.

    Local media reported that police who made the discovery at the hotel feared a “Las Vegas-style shooting”, a reference to events in Nevada on 1 October 2017, when a man killed 60 and injured more than 400 by firing assault rifles from a hotel room.

    However, an official told the Associated Press investigators did not immediately find any evidence to suggest the group was plotting a mass shooting. The official also cautioned that the investigation was still in its early stages.
    The Denver Channel, a local ABC affiliate, reported that one of the men recently posted a message on Facebook about a divorce and said he was going to “go out in a big way”.

    But the FBI said: “We have no reason to believe this incident was connected to terrorism or a threat directed at the All-Star Game. We are not aware of any threat to the All-Star Game events, venues, players or the community at this time.”

  9. Kathy says:

    Continuing on what viruses want from yesterday’s thread, if they can be said to want anything, it is only to reproduce, which is the only thing they can do.

    This can be summed up with Bill Bryson’s astute observation in “A Short History of Nearly Everything”: the purpose of DNA [or coding RNA] is to make more DNA [or coding RNA].

    Viruses are one way in which this happens.

    To answer another question, I don’t think an individual virus that invades a cell survives. Upon infection, it kind of breaks apart and uses its molecular arsenal to hijack the cell’s machinery so it will make copies of the virus. The end result is many copies of itself, and a chain reaction of new cell infections.

  10. Kathy says:


    The GOP is all about the devout worship of money these days. They’d rather see millions die than slow down economic activity in order to contain a deadly virus.

  11. Kylopod says:


    The GOP is all about the devout worship of money these days.

    When have they not been?

  12. JohnSF says:

    Well, anyone interested in the England football game result: England 70, Canada 14. Hooray!
    What’s that? The other game? The soccer one, oh, um, well…
    OK, then..
    England 1, Italy 1 after extra time, then Italy win the penalty shootout 3-2.

    OTOH, there’s no shame in getting to the final and actually leading Italy, one of the best teams in the world, for an hour of play.
    The penalty misses by Rashford, Sancho & Saka have brought the racists out the woodwork on social media though.
    Football (soccer) has always had a scummy fringe to the fandom; they hated the England team anyway, because they took the knee before matches.

  13. CSK says:

    I’ve been wondering how it is that the Trumpkins can be anti-vaccine when their Dear Leader Trump himself demands credit for and indeed brags about creating it.

    I know these people are past masters of cognitive dissonance, but even so…

  14. Kathy says:


    Is there a rational explanation for irrational actions?

    I’ll take a stab at it and say it’s because the Ass’s heart (figuratively speaking) wasn’t in it. It’s why they’re not demanding an actual infrastructure bill, either.

    As far as the pandemic goes, trump cared only about downplaying it, blaming it on China, and using racist terms for it. He cared little about vaccines. So sayeth the leader, so sayeth the sheep.

    Anything trump’s heart was invested in, from the wall to the big lie, his cult will follow him to their deaths if need be.

  15. Kylopod says:


    I’ve been wondering how it is that the Trumpkins can be anti-vaccine when their Dear Leader Trump himself demands credit for and indeed brags about creating it.

    I’ve been thinking about just that in the past few days.

    My working theory is that questioning vaccines fits into the broader narrative of denying the reality of Covid, which is something Trump and his supporters see as important because once you admit the pandemic is real, you’re faced with Trump’s epic mishandling of the crisis and his presiding over the deaths of half a million Americans.

    Of course Trump and his supporters have never entirely denied the reality of Covid. They’ve just attempted to downplay it–however, the degree to which they do has always been vague and inconsistent, depending on what point they’re trying to make at any particular moment. When they want to protest masks and safety restrictions, it’s a hoax that’s no worse than flu and most of the purported deaths had other causes. When they want to blame China, it’s a bioweapon inflicted on the American people. You talk about cognitive dissonance when it comes to vaccines? That’s just the tip of the iceberg. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a right-wing belief system less internally consistent.

  16. de stijl says:

    I am extremely annoyed at myself today… Very.

    I threw away ~ $15 / $20 bucks of groceries unused today.

    Some I blame on in how the amount produce is sold. An amount applicable for a family of four is the set amount routinely sold in grocery stores and is too much for a single person. I endeavor to use it all. Using up a super-sized bundle of cilantro is almost impossible for a household of my size.

    I also wasted meat last week. Let some go too funky to eat. That is bad behavior. Those critters gave their lives to feed us and I wasted their flesh. I opened too many things and unfroze too many things in too short a timespan because I craved variety. Shamefully so.

    A goodly portion went off before I could finish it. That is shameful. I must do better.

    I can afford it, but being wasteful is anathema.

  17. de stijl says:


    Remember when Rs were for law and order?

  18. CSK says:

    It may be that they just mimic Trump, who says whatever he needs to/feels like saying at any given moment, and purports to “believe” things for temporary convenience.

    The best example of this is when he said that women should be punished for having abortions, then changed that to abortion providers should be punished for providing abortions, and finally concluded that the law should be left as is–all in the course of a single afternoon.

  19. Kathy says:

    On other news, today the government issued my vaccination certificate for COVID 19.

    Given how lax the procedure and paperwork seemed at the vaccination site, I wondered if we were going to get some kind of official proof. Mine, at least, is correct in the dates, brand, and lot numbers of the doses I received.

  20. Kylopod says:


    It may be that they just mimic Trump, who says whatever he needs to/feels like saying at any given moment, and purports to “believe” things for temporary convenience.

    The problem is that they aren’t mimicking Trump on this–he’s been generally pro-vaccine this year (which is ironic since he has a history of promoting anti-vax claims prior to the pandemic). They rationalize it in the same way they do for his occasional public statements denouncing white supremacists. They just don’t seem to realize he’s saying it for a different reason–not for cover, but because he wants to tout it as an accomplishment.

  21. CSK says:

    I meant that comment about Trump in a general sense.

    It makes perfect sense that Trump would be in favor of the Covid-19 vaccine. After all, he created it. Right?

  22. sam says:
  23. Jax says:

    @de stijl: “Food waste” is why I have chickens. NOTHING goes to waste with chickens around, “fridge cleanout day” is their favorite! 😛

  24. de stijl says:


    The dichotomy of both claiming C-19 is a nothing piffle barely worse than than the common flu, and simultaneously claiming it is an engineered Chinese bioweapon is baffling.

    One thing I have learned is that Rs will claim anything for PR. And that no one seriously or meaningfully can ding them for doing so.

    After all it’s what they do, we all know it, so that line of observation and criticism is now moot and intolerant. Cut off from serious criticism in popular news press.

    The implication is that if you abuse truth long enough it is rude to call you out on doing it. Madness!

    Bullshitting yourself into tolerance by repetition.

  25. CSK says:

    “This site can’t be reached” is what I get when I click on your link.

  26. EddieInCA says:

    Tomorrow, I leave for five days in Arkansas. It’s going to be about 95 degrees with 90% humidity.

    I’m wearing my T-Shirt that says “Kaep was right.” in big letters on the front as often as I can.

    Yes. I’m an asshole.

  27. EddieInCA says:


    There is an estra http in there. Try this.

  28. Kathy says:

    Richard Branson will be much on the news between now and July 20th, when Jeff Bezos surpasses his “space travel” feat.

    Big whoop.

    Technically a suborbital flight is any kind of powered flight that aims really high and doesn’t reach orbit. By that metric, the Estes rockets I launched back in my teens were suborbital flights (granted not all were successful*).

    Ok, that’s overstating things. After all, Messrs Branson and Bezos have spent billions of dollars in development costs in order to provide their peers, and those lousy mere millionaires as well, a thrill ride and bragging rights.

    I was very excited about Spaceship One, the prototype of Branson’s Virgin Glaactic vehicle, back in 2004, seventeen years ago, when it made its first two flights to “the edge of space.” This enthusiasm waned as time passed and progress on the passenger model seemed glacial. The big news in the interim was the crash of a the passenger version during tests in 2014. one of the two pilots died.

    Meantime, real space companies like SpaceX, Rocket Lab, and even Branson’s own Virgin Orbit, have been actually launching satellites into orbit. While Musk gets taken to task along Bezos and Branson, let’s not forget SpaceX has paying customers to ut useful cargoes into orbit, including sending actual people to the ISS, not just on a joyride.

    Suborbital flight is pointless. The only application of it is ICBMs carrying nuclear warheads, and that was perfected back in the late 1950s.

    More ranting perhaps later.

    * I once put together a Space Shuttle model. The wings were for stability, not gliding. It had a parachute, same as the conventional rockets. But I took a crawler platform from a plastic scale model, and adapted it as a launch pad. Both survived one flight. The rocket landed in an inaccessible ravine after the second one.

  29. sam says:


    See if this will work:

    And if not, google The Toys A lover’s concerto.

  30. CSK says:

    Lord, I remember that number. Thanks.

  31. becca says:

    @de stijl: I hate to waste food. And water. My grandmother made sure of that. Once they got city water at the farm, she never let you forget water cost money, not like the old iron pump under the apple trees (sweetest, most refreshing cold water ever). Food was never tossed, but went to slop for the yearly pig. No stinky garbage!

    The French are great at not wasting food. Jacques Pepin is great on the subject of food waste. Since we are at the End of Plenty era, I imagine the topic will soon become mainstream.

  32. sam says:


    Ah. Sorry my bad http-wise…

  33. Mu Yixiao says:

    @de stijl:

    Some I blame on in how the amount produce is sold. An amount applicable for a family of four is the set amount routinely sold in grocery stores and is too much for a single person.

    Find the produce manager and ask for smaller portions. When I was working at the store, we would regularly have people do that, and we’d happily oblige. I worked in the meat dept., and I’d regularly remind our cutters to put out some small portions (single burgers, 2-brat packages, etc.), and I’d keep reminding the produce manager to put out smaller portions of broccoli, cauliflower, etc. They were amazed at how quickly they sold.

    If you need some info to back up your reasoning, check the US Census info for your county relating to home size. In my county (as of 2010 numbers) 58.9% of households are 2 or fewer residents. The days of giant farm families are gone (though a few do still exist).

  34. CSK says:

    Pepin is great. Have you seen his recipes for “fridge salad” and “fridge soup”? My grandmother used to make fridge soup, only she called it “garbage soup.” Not an appetizing name, but the end result was good.

  35. de stijl says:


    I can accommodate produce wastage. It is sold in portions too large for a household of one, and I cannot freeze it for responsible future use. Something out of my control, so I have to accept it. It burns my butt, though.

    I would very much appreciate smaller amounts cilantro, etc. for sale. By the ounce would be perfect.

    But I should not have wasted meat. That was my fault. I craved variety and that was irresponsible. I wasted a critter’s death.

    My neighbors have exotic chickens. They are so cool. Everytime I walk by I tell them they are beautiful. And to have an awesome day. They amuse me greatly.

  36. Mu Yixiao says:

    Well, pooh.

    IT is taking away admin access to our computers sometime in the next week. Looks like I’m going to have to download a new copy of Portable Apps.

    At least I got the stuff I really need installed already.

  37. becca says:

    @CSK: Yep. Limp, droopy lettuce never tasted so good, right?

  38. Mister Bluster says:

    @JohnSF:..OTOH, there’s no shame in getting to the final and actually leading Italy, one of the best teams in the world, for an hour of play.

    Kinda’ like the time when I woke up one morning in all my duds on not my couch. When I opened my eyes I saw her sitting in a chair across from me dressed for work sipping a cup of tea.
    “You fell asleep.” she said.

  39. gVOR08 says:

    @de stijl:

    Remember when Rs were for law and order?

    No. They’ve never been for more than order. That’s what the blue line flag is about.

    Conservatism consists of exactly one proposition, to wit: There must be in-groups whom the law protects but does not bind, alongside out-groups whom the law binds but does not protect.- Frank Wilhoit

  40. de stijl says:


    Have you played Kerbal Space Program?

    If not, check it out. Realistic, in-depth. Highly recommended!

  41. gVOR08 says:

    @Kathy: Yeah. Wake me up when one of them does an orbit.

  42. Kylopod says:

    @de stijl:

    One thing I have learned is that Rs will claim anything for PR. And that no one seriously or meaningfully can ding them for doing so.

    But that’s simply from the grifters’ side of things. What about the run-of-the-mill Trump voter? I think they believe what they’re saying–or, rather, I think they believe they believe it. I think there’s a strong element of denial and lying to themselves.

    I think we liberals sometimes fail to comprehend right-wingers because they’ve got a fundamentally different way of processing statements of belief than we do. Take the claim that the 2020 election was stolen. Of course I think that belief is bullshit, but at least I understand the nature of such a claim. After all, I think the 2000 election was stolen. But you wouldn’t have heard me in 2001 claiming that Al Gore was actually the president, or that he’d be reinstated in August. When righties make that claim about Trump, they’re not just making an empirical claim, there’s something deeply pathological underlying it. They’re not just claiming Trump happened to win and had it stolen, they literally cannot accept the possibility that Trump could ever be defeated in anything. Because of that, they can’t merely say the election was stolen, they have to say he’s still president, because to admit any other possibility is to admit he suffered some form of defeat. They can’t even say he was illegitimately defeated. That would be too much for their psyche to handle.

    A while ago I posted a clip of aninterview with a Trumpist at a rally around 2018 or so, and while there was a load of awesome crazy in the interview, my attention drifted to one particular exchange that was easy to overlook, but highly revealing:

    INTERVIEWER: Trump went bankrupt four times.

    TRUMPIST: No, he didn’t. No he didn’t. No he didn’t. And that’s business.

    Notice how quickly the Trumpist went from denying Trump went bankrupt to justifying it? Literally in a single breath.

    It almost reminds me of the logic of a dream, where you’re just processing everything moment to moment so that you don’t notice the way everything continually shifts and changes.

    And the same applies to their beliefs on Covid. They’re not laying out a set of beliefs the way we normally think of such things. Everything comes back to their instinct to always double down, and in this case that means downplaying the pandemic as much as they think they’re capable, because to acknowledge its existence is to give in to the libs–and to face the possibility that Trump royally effed up. Yet they can’t deny its existence totally, so they’re stuck in an endless loop of shifting, contradictory claims which they don’t notice mainly because it doesn’t matter to their bottom line.

  43. MarkedMan says:

    @de stijl: As I once commented to my overweigh brother-in-law when he was trying to eat up the ‘good’ pieces of bread I was throwing in the trash due to mold – the waste is in the buying, not in the lack of eating. In other words, the only way to meaningfully reduce food waste is on the front end. If you ‘reduce waste’ by eating too much you are not actually reducing waste and you are hurting your body to boot.

  44. gVOR08 says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Larry Sabato? Famous prolific author and frequent talking head Larry Sabato?

    Hannah Arendt talks a lot about the Moscow subway. Stalin said that only Bolshevism could produce something as nice and as big as the Moscow subway. Therefore the Moscow subway was the only subway in the world. And therefore the duty of any good Bolshevik who discovered the Paris subway was to destroy the Paris subway. Trumpism is the only truth, and they will make it so by destroying anyone who says otherwise. But I think they make a mistake by picking on someone who’s able to fight back.

  45. de stijl says:


    They inevitably align order to law. Axiomatic truth there.

  46. de stijl says:

    Sabato is left wing? Color me surprised!

  47. MarkedMan says:

    @Kylopod: I think there is a really sharp division in personality types when it comes to acknowledging reality. Taking it out of the realm of politics, there are two types of people: those that feel it is despicable not to acknowledge error, and those that think it is contemptible to admit weakness.

  48. CSK says:

    @de stijl:
    Anyone who doesn’t worship Trump is a Communist deep-stater.

  49. Jen says:

    @de stijl: I am with you on food waste. I lived for a portion of my childhood in Southeast Asia and remember seeing people who were starving and those who suffered from malnutrition. Those images stay with you.

    For cilantro, a few tips: one, treat the bunch like fresh flowers–when you get it home, remove the rubber band or twist-tie from it, trim the ends, and stick it in a glass with some water. When it starts to look limp, you can chop it finely, add a small amount of water and freeze solid in ice cube trays for adding to soups/stews. Or, whiz in a food processor with garlic, lemon, and olive oil as a sauce. Chop and mix with garlic in soft butter, roll into a cylinder, and chill. Slice off “coins” of the herb butter and freeze.

    I hate wasting food and have become quite adept at fridge clear-out processes.

  50. de stijl says:


    Literally no piece of bread with mold on it is still ‘good’. Within the loose structure of bread mold send sends tendrils far and wide quickly.

    In hard cheeses you can excise mold carefully and still safely eat the rest.

    Bread, no. If one bit is moldy, the whole is too to a lesser extent just not visibly.

  51. steve says:

    “Continuing on what viruses want”



  52. gVOR08 says:


    I think we liberals sometimes fail to comprehend right-wingers because they’ve got a fundamentally different way of processing statements of belief than we do.

    I’ve observed before in these threads that to a conservative “true” means true to the faith.

    To you or me, “true” means comporting with fact. Many people live in a largely fact free world. They believe what’s comfortable. Russian propaganda isn’t aimed at selling any point in particular, it’s aimed at casting doubt on everything. Very effective when targeted at people who have very little grounding in fact to start with.

    You or I have read hundreds, maybe thousands, of pages of Civil War history. For most people the Civil War is just vague background in Western movies. Easy for them to believe vaguely it was about “rights”, or anything except slavery. We have at least some lay idea how evolution works and how DNA works. We hear of an mRNA vaccine and have at least some vague idea how that might work. To most people “evolution” is a thing that makes giant shark/crocodile hybrids overnight in a horror movie. So yeah, whatever DNA is, the vaccine could alter it.

    Which is not to denigrate people. You and I have chosen to waste a lot of time learning things that are of no use day-to-day.

  53. Mu Yixiao says:

    @de stijl:

    I would very much appreciate smaller amounts cilantro, etc. for sale. By the ounce would be perfect.

    Have you considered a window-box herb garden?

    I have both oregano and rosemary sitting on the window sill. Rosemary likes to be wet and in the sun. So I put the pot in a bowl, and just keep the bowl filled with water. I’ll probably repot the oregano and do the same.

    Cilantro should be easy, and if you snip from the top it will keep from blooming and stay full.

  54. Mu Yixiao says:

    And… again: Ask the produce manager.

    They may have bunches in the back that are half-wilted. Ask if they’ll pull out the wilted parts and slap a sale price on it.

    Get to know your produce manager and your meat manager. You might be surprised at the things they’re willing to do to make a sale (especially if they can sell some of the stuff that they normally might have to throw out).

  55. Kathy says:

    @de stijl:

    It looks great. I don’t think I’d have the time or patience for it now…


    Hey, they all made a sub-orbit 🙂

  56. Jay L Gischer says:

    Continuing our discussion, this is a good piece on cults.

  57. MarkedMan says:


    I’ve observed before in these threads that to a conservative “true” means true to the faith.

    For years, I was completely stumped by why so many people to whom religion was very important followed such obvious charlatans. And then one day it hit me: they worship faith itself, not any god. Once I took that as my measure, their behavior made much more sense. If defiantly believing in the face of overwhelming evidence is a good thing in and of itself, then their worship of chumps like Trump and Falwell and Jim and Tammy Faye. And moving beyond the personal, things like the Civil War not being about slavery or chloroquine being a wonder drug begin to make sense too.

  58. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @EddieInCA: Yes. I’m an asshole.

    You should fit right in then, they’re all assholes too. Either that or stick out like the sore thumb you are.

  59. de stijl says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    I’ve tried. And tried.

    As of today I have two vital rosemary plantings. I treasure them both for their bounty and that they survived.

    Occasionally I can coax plants needing south facing windows into surviving for a few months. All my south windows do not get direct sun but for an hour or two a day.

    I would like a basement quasi-sol lighted herb garden but the cost-benefit ratio is bad. And produce requires hydroponics. Not gonna happen.

  60. JohnSF says:

    @Mister Bluster:
    Ah, no.
    That would be what we call a no score draw.

    0-0 A.E.T.

  61. Mister Bluster says:

    Virgin Galactic SpaceShipTwo
    I want one.
    I want to be a Rocket Man!

  62. Mister Bluster says: score draw.

    I remember where I was living at the time so it had to be 1977.
    You’re right. No points.
    It was nice knowing ya’ Julie.

  63. Mu Yixiao says:

    @de stijl:

    Grow lights

    They’re set to the 450nm (Chlorophyll a/b & Beta carotene) and 650nm (a/b) ranges. Our company makes a super high-end version for industrial-sized growing operations, but these little things get the job done.

  64. de stijl says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    I am cool with store-sourced dried, processed spices and many herbs.

    There is no possible way I can do smoked paprika. There is no way I can do curry powder.

    Currently I can do a few sprigs of fresh Rosemary every week or ten days.

    Cost-benefit bends towards store-bought.

  65. Mister Bluster says:

    Texas House Democrats to leave state to block Republican voting restrictions
    The majority of the Democrats fleeing Texas are flying to Washington, DC, on two chartered jets. They have kept planning secret because they can be legally compelled to return to the Capitol and believed law enforcement could be sent to track them down, the sources said.

    Looks like a job for Los Diablos Tejanos.

  66. Jen says:

    The Michigan election case is um, not going well for Sidney Powell et. al.

    Powell and Lin Wood have 14 days to come up with a defense as to why they shouldn’t be disciplined by the Court.

    One of the lawyers was crying. Seems totally normal for a case like this.

  67. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @de stijl:

    Using up a super-sized bundle of cilantro is almost impossible for a household of my size.

    Indeed. There are lots of things that I don’t prepare, or prepare using an inferior recipe/method for that exact reason. I have other friends who needing a sprig or two of parsley will buy a bunch and throw away whatever they don’t use. I can’t handle that. “Special recipe” items are usually things that I eat out rather than make at home. Almost never eat anything at a restaurant that I can make at home other than breakfast.

  68. gVOR08 says:


    And then one day it hit me: they worship faith itself

    I think that’s exactly right. The may hate Muslims and distrust Jews, but they seem more comfortable with Muslims and Jews than with atheists. Muslims and Jews may be different teams, but they’re playing the same game. Atheists are rejecting the game, the game that is central to their lives.

    A few years ago I read Russell Kirk’s The Conservative Mind. It’s supposed to be the great book in the conservative canon, but I found it a bit confusing. He kept talking about so-and-so being the only man of his age who understood the great truth, but he never said what the great truth was. Finally you see that the great truth is belief. Everyone should believe. But Kirk never says so, presumably knowing that a statement that everyone must believe, perhaps be forced to believe, was unacceptable. He didn’t seem to care what everyone must believe, just that everyone must believe.

    You see this in a lot of conservative writing. The-Truth-Which-Must-Not-Be-Named. Often because it’s on the wrong side of church-state, or because it would imply an unacceptable or infeasible level of coercion, but sometimes just because the whole thing would sound silly if you actually said it out loud.

  69. Just Another Ex-Republican says:

    @Mister Bluster: Didn’t like it when Oregon R’s walked away and hid to prevent a quorum; not fond of it here either.

    Definitely another indicator of how sickly our democratic Congressional Republic actually is.

  70. de stijl says:


    I have seen previews of The Eyes Of Tammy Faye with Jessica Chastain as Tammy Faye by Michael Showalter who is one of my favorite people of all time.

    I expect good things.

  71. Kathy says:


    I distrust reducing anything complex to a single cause, but this would also explain the many claims that atheism is as based on faith as religion, and that atheism is in fact a religion.

    They also don’t like it when I say thousands of gods have been worshiped throughout history, and they are atheists about all but one of them.

  72. de stijl says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    Produce like cilantro has a ~ 10 day shelf life.

    It gets used or it dies. I prefer a small portion got used and is enjoyed rather than all of it got tossed in the trash unused.

  73. Kathy says:


    Maybe if we started a rumor that getting the COVID vaccine boosts Pfizer’s stock…

  74. Kylopod says:


    The may hate Muslims and distrust Jews, but they seem more comfortable with Muslims and Jews than with atheists.

    I’m gonna have to disagree with you there. First of all, the majority of Jews in the US are secular. They and atheists aren’t mutually exclusive categories. There are a lot of Jewish atheists out there.

    But second of all, I totally disagree that they’re more comfortable with Muslims than they are with atheists. Their reactions to, say, Ilhan Omar compared with, say, Kirsten Sinema would seem to belie that assumption.

  75. dazedandconfused says:


    Branson’s Scaled Composites op was reduced to sub-orbital by the death of Paul Allen.

    I believe the current op is really about finding new investors. Sorta like the early Ferrari production cars were really about sponsoring the Ferrari racing program. They were fast, but their fit and finish were positively Fiatian, as was the reliability. Grossly over-priced and everybody knew they were just joining Team Ferrari.

  76. Beth says:

    So I had my pre-surgery Covid test today. After explaining to me why I didn’t need to lean my head back (she didn’t want me to run her over) she proceeded to tickle my brain with the longest swab I’ve ever seen. As I thrashed around wildly in my seat, panicked and laughing, She laughed and said, “Aaahhhhh, you’re one of those! A giggler!” She seemed quite pleased. It was like she won the giggler lottery today and was going to get to lord it over her co-workers.

    Assuming I don’t have Covid, only two more days till I get a new face.

  77. Kathy says:


    Oddly, Branson’s Virgin Orbit uses a modified former Virgin Atlantic (no relation*) 747 to launch a two stage rocket to orbit small satellites.

    *Citation needed.

  78. Kathy says:

    Is it just me, or do these Cuban Communists sound positively Republican?

  79. de stijl says:


    As in reconstruction?

    If so, I wish the best.

    Be awesome!

  80. Beth says:

    @de stijl:

    More re-creation than reconstruction, but yes. Repairing things that First Puberty did wrong to the top half of my face. Phase two will be in December-ish. Just in time to scare my in-laws.

  81. Kathy says:


    Good wishes, both for the test and the surgery.

  82. de stijl says:


    Fuck me, you are bad-ass!

    And hard-core!

    Your face is gonna hurt for awhile.

    Be well and true, love! Best wishes!

    Big step! Congrats!

  83. Mister Bluster says:

    @Just Another Ex-Republican:..Definitely another indicator of how sickly our democratic Congressional Republic actually is.

    Noteworthy state legislative walkouts
    If I’m reading this right both Republicans and Democrats in Oregon have pulled this stunt a combined 4 times in 20 years. In 1924 Republicans stayed away for 6 months in Rhode Island.

  84. de stijl says:


    Remember the sentiment and meaning of that song:

    You Were Cool


  85. de stijl says:

    A song to see you through:

    Glad Girls

    It fakes at temporal and now.

    It is about transformation.

    And the light just passes through me now

    And the light just passes through me

  86. DrDaveT says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    Have you considered a window-box herb garden? […] Cilantro should be easy

    I can’t speak for @de stijl, but not for me. I have an enclosed high balcony facing west. Basil and dill do quite well, but cilantro and parsley can’t take the heat. Chives are so-so; lettuce is hopeless. Rosemary tends to do well for a while, then suddenly die without warning — no idea why.

    I particularly want to grow cilantro because it’s the herb that (for me) loses the most in dried or jarred form. The squeeze tubes are the best, and they aren’t particularly good. Dried cilantro might as well be hay.

  87. flat earth luddite says:

    That may be, Eddie, but you’re our asshole, and we love you for it.

    Truth truthily truthed.

  88. CSK says:

    My very best to you.

  89. de stijl says:


    I am thinking tubed cilantro might be best. Not my fave, but not as wasteful.

    When I was a kid I worked at a grocery store. We threw away 2/3 of produce that was once presented as “fresh”. It might have changed since then but not that hard. Maybe JIT delivery cut the wasted percent a bit. Convince me.

    That experience started my path of do not waste.

    Last cilantro I bought was a solid six days into a ten day shelf life. It was a bunch larger than I could possibly consume. I knew that. I used as much as I could until the bunch got funky.

    The funky bunch. Marky Mark frowns.

  90. Jax says:

    @Jen: OMG, I was stuck in “sit and wait” mode with kid stuff most of the day and followed “The Kraken: Michigan” drama….I ALMOST felt bad for them. 😛

  91. Pete S says:

    @de stijl:
    I just wrapped up a few months working produce in a grocery store setting up the wet counter on weekends. We culled stuff before it went bad, and donated much if that to shelters who could use it that day.

    For the cilantro try trimming the end and leaving it submerged in cold water overnight. A lot of leafy greens will last longer if you do that every couple of days.

  92. Jax says:

    @de stijl: Once upon a time, in a place very far from here that had a real grocery store, I happened upon a little spot in the frozen section that had frozen trays of small cubes of cilantro, oregano, basil, ginger, garlic, etc. Basically everything you need that doesn’t keep well for long. They were wonderful!!!

    It’s entirely possible I haven’t been to a real grocery store since then. I still have a tray each of everything, though!

  93. de stijl says:


    I have used that argument often. Every believer is an an atheist except for her / his preferred.

    Every believer disavows 1000s of gods except theirs. Like their shit thought up monotheism or morality. And why is monotheism best practice?

    A faith that proclaims father, son, and holy ghost and Mary Mother Of God also claims it is monotheistic. What with saints and angels too. Baffling. Pick a lane. Looks like repurposed Hellenism to me.

  94. de stijl says:

    @Pete S:

    I absolutely agree. I will do that.

    It is still sold only in bunches larger than I can rightly consume and that is way fucked up.

    Is it stupid to ask that produce be sold by the ounce rather than in bunches I cannot likely finish before some goes bad? I think that is rational, but it may not be doable.

    My recollection was fill sold empty slots with the oldest produce still viable. Has that changed?

  95. DrDaveT says:


    They also don’t like it when I say thousands of gods have been worshiped throughout history, and they are atheists about all but one of them.

    Not quite. They are heretics about all but one of them. Atheists deny the existence of any gods; that’s the thing that freaks out the True Believers. Believing in the wrong god is an understandable error; denying that there are gods at all breaks their brains.

  96. Pete S says:

    @de stijl:
    We definitely get the oldest stuff out first for sale. But we got a shipment 4 or 5 times a week, and daily shipments from a couple of local vendors so we tried not to keep anything around long. We hated throwing stuff out and it is not necessary. It is especially annoying to see a box sit in the cooler for a week

    A lot of things that come in bunches are packed that way right when they are picked. Anything that came to the store loose was sold by weight or by the piece.

  97. JohnMcC says:

    @dazedandconfused: Well, yes. Ferraris of the 50s and 60s were principally a way to finance the real interest of ‘il commentadore’.

    But what a sound they made with that 3liter v-12… pistons as big around as half dollars… 4 cams and 24 valves making a whistle… 7thou on the tach…

    Obviously. Never got over it.

  98. de stijl says:

    @Pete S:

    Is it unsurmountable to break up a bunch and sell a portion by the ounce?

    It is shipped to the store by the bunch. Can it be un-bunched practically or legally?

  99. de stijl says:

    So I got into a big set-to in the Moth thread with multiple people.

    I tried to state my view pure. I might’ve pushed too hard.

    It is interesting if you like drama.

    I dislike drama, myself.

  100. de stijl says:

    The first time I heard Song 2 was on shit radio in a crappy car on the eastern edge of Dallas with a coworker on on way to a DB2 class to prep for an upcoming project.

    I told dude (his name was Steve and he was an okay cat but not up for fun) 20 seconds in I’m gonna crank this as high as this radio can go right now and I will head bang, but I will maintain lane integrity.

    Normally I would ask and be polite and contrite.

    That morning I told and I did. It was ~ 7:35 in East Dallas. Bam! Smoked me hard!

    I calmed and put the volume back down to normal person volume. Said “Sorry, man! I apologize”. We continued on to the DB2 class. I sat down.

    That evening we did hotel dinner as co-workers on gigs do.

    At 7 I went downtown. Found a store. Bought Blur. Asked on clubs, bars, shows.

    I was responsible. I had two beers in three hours and back at hotel before 11 sober as a judge. I wanted to get wrecked and rage and howl at the sky. I didn’t.

    I was very lame but that was still a great night.

  101. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @de stijl: It can be done, but the conventional wisdom is that re-bunching thing that don’t sell for a lot to begin with isn’t cost effective. The labor costs more than you can recover. Beyond that, a lot of bunch goods don’t sell in high volumes to begin with. 40 years ago, one of my jobs in the produce warehouse was making 5 dozen-bunch crates of radishes, and parsley into half dozen and dozen sized units to ship to supermarkets. Restaurants didn’t even buy half dozens. We’d sell 3 each bunches to a typical restaurant. (As far as I could tell, we didn’t make money on our broken lot department, it was primarily a salvage operation and a service to customers.)

  102. Pete S says:

    @de stijl:
    Is it physically possible? Yes, of course, but from watching how many members of the public treat merchandise I suspect that overall the waste would be higher. A lot of people would be searching for one or two perfect sprigs of cilantro and throw half a pound on the floor….

    The ultimate issue would be the accountants. Remember that accountants view a grocery store as an accounting firm with food in the lobby. The idea of buying something by the bunch and selling it by the ounce would have made their heads explode.