Open Forum

Where you can't be off topic because there IS no topic.

The floor is yours.

James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is a Security Studies professor at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. CSK says:

    Peter Fonda died; Jeffrey Epstein’s death was ruled a suicide; and Ghislaine Maxwell was spotted at an L.A. burger joint. And radioactive iodine has been detected in Norway from the Russia explosion.

    In no particular order of importance.

  2. OzarkHillbilly says:

    House GOP’s Reported Talking Points For Shootings: Note ‘Violence From The Left’


  3. OzarkHillbilly says:

    It would appear that the only thing the British can agree on is that while a no deal Brexit is the equivalent of self castration, it still beats the hell out of having Jeremy Corbyn in #10 Downing St

  4. @OzarkHillbilly:

    It’s not just rebel Tories who won’t back Corbyn. The Lib Dems have said they wouldn’t join a coalition that included Corbyn as PM and even some members of Labour don’t want him at No. 10.

  5. Bill says:
  6. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Doug Mataconis: Yep, hence my referral to the British.

    I find it a little funny that some (American) people act as tho the choice comes down to Boris or Corbyn. That’s it. Forgetting that there are other parties, other possible choices, even within Labor and the Tories. So the disagreement gets framed as “Those people who don’t like Corbyn are just putting party before country.” without it ever occurring to them that brush paints Corbyn and his backers too.

    My knowledge of the intricacies of British politics registers just above zero, so I can’t begin to say how viable the other options are (or even what they are) but they do exist. I think.

  7. @OzarkHillbilly:

    Yes there are other choices but the odds that any of them will become PM unless there is another election are slim

  8. Stormy Dragon says:

    This is a horrible joke, but it made me laugh:

    Q: What do you get when you cross Donald Trump and Bill Clinton?
    A: Murdered in your jail cell

  9. Stormy Dragon says:


    Part of the problem is a lot of people think Corbyn also wants a no-deal Brexit, but with plausible deniability so he can blame the Tories for the fallout.

  10. Mister Bluster says:

    Trump to drop out of 2020 race within months, former aide Scaramucci claims
    “He’s got the self-worth in terms of his self-esteem of a small pigeon. It’s a very small pigeon. And so you think this guy’s gonna look at those poll numbers and say — he’s not gonna be able to handle that humiliation.”

    Many years ago I worked in the pest control industry for a guy who said pigeons were rats with wings.

  11. wr says:

    @Mister Bluster: It is my sincere hope that when the current era finally ends and Trump is flushed down the toilet, all these bottom-feeders like Scaramucci and Sarah Sanders and Corey Lewandowsky go with him.

    Scaramucci got famous for a while by sucking Trump’s dick in public. Now he’s getting his next fifteen minutes by saying he won’t suck Trump’s dick anymore. I wouldn’t listen to him before and I won’t listen to him now, and I don’t know why anyone would.

  12. Jen says:


    […] all these bottom-feeders like Scaramucci and Sarah Sanders and Corey Lewandowsky go with him.

    Lewandowski is considering a run for U.S. Senate here in NH.

  13. Tyrell says:

    I have spent several days trying to update Windows 10 with version 1903.
    This included hours trying every solution Microsoft could think up. Strange that I could install anything but Microsoft products. Finally I stumbled on a solution by process of elimination. I downloaded the update from another site and installed it from the folder instead of getting it from the Windows 10 menu options.
    This is ridiculous. I am looking at Linux Mint or Ubuntu alternatives.

  14. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Tyrell: Let us know how that works out for you. I had a computer with a Linux operating system in it before I went to Korea. It worked fine, but all I could really do is surf the internet and send and receive email. I did find that I could write worksheets for my students in Open Office, send them to myself at school and MS Word would print them out, but when I came back from Korea, the lawyer for my mom’s estate told me he couldn’t open the Open Office files I would send him, so I had to print them out and mail them.

  15. An Interested Party says:

    Lewandowski is considering a run for U.S. Senate here in NH.

    It’ll be nice to see him humiliated too…

  16. Jax says:

    @Tyrell: Consider yourself lucky, I’ve been dealing with computers that took the last two Windows updates really badly the last couple weeks. Printers would suddenly no longer connect, destroyed Quickbooks networking/sync capabilities, each one has a different problem, but it all started with the updates.

    They should let us use Windows for free, until it’s perfect. This thing where we find their bugs and still have to pay for the use of it is stupid. 😉

  17. de stijl says:

    I’m listening to The Pixies, Gang of Four, and Rancid.

    I’d highlight Gang of Four “Damaged Goods” off Entertainment!

  18. de stijl says:

    There was this bar on University. Like two to five blocks east of Snelling. I cannot recall the name of the place.

    They mostly had second tier bands (like us) and punk rock karaoke in the early week.

    Damaged Goods was my go-to karaoke choice. I could nail that song.

  19. de stijl says:

    I could also nail Going Underground by The Jam.

    Another song I really like (which I never sang there) was by The Style Council.

    Walls Come Tumbling Down

    God bless Paul Weller.

  20. Jax says:

    A forest fire started about 30 miles northeast of me today. I saw the poof of smoke about noon, by 3 pm people were evacuating their homes.

    Turns out it’s called the Tannerite fire, some really dumb motherfuckers lit off some tannerite on day 2 of a Red Flag Fire Warning day.

    There’s no fixing stupid.

  21. Jax says:
  22. de stijl says:

    Today I learned what Tannerite is. (Thank you, Google.)

    Why is it legal?

  23. Jax says:

    @de stijl: I suspect it has a whole lot to do with people not knowing stuff like that is legal in the first place. I had no idea, either, til a couple years ago when I was discussing a beaver dam that was causing problems on a crossing. Somebody said “tannerite will blow a good hole in the dam”.

  24. Jax says:

    @de stijl: pictures and video on the Bridger-Teton National Forest site if you want to see some badass pilots dropping retardant and smokejumpers parachuting in!

    Hopefully it won’t be too windy tomorrow.

  25. de stijl says:

    Where is the wind out of? Are you in danger?

  26. de stijl says:

    Karaoke is an intimate and vulnerable thing. It as much the audience as the singer.

    You have to go for it. Unconfident karaoke is bad. Uncool. You must proceed like you’re sure and willing.

    You have to assume that people will support you and build you up. Even if you technically suck, if you give it all, I will clap and hoot and support you the best I can.

    I have seen the meekest wall flower shine like a diamond by willpower. That is magic. It’s hard. It’s hard to let go. In public.

    Screw talent. I want to see will.

  27. Just nutha ignint crracker says:

    Tannerite is the brand name of a binary explosive marketed primarily for making exploding targets for firearms practice.

    Can someone explain why people need to practice shooting exploding targets? I’m serious; I don’t get it.

  28. Gustopher says:

    @Just nutha ignint crracker:

    Can someone explain why people need to practice shooting exploding targets? I’m serious; I don’t get it.

    Because explosions are awesome and cool. This is not a hard question.

  29. Jax says:

    @de stijl: I am in no danger (except for the “surrounded by idiots who shoot exploding targets on red flag days” part 😉 ). The wind typically comes from the west or south this time of year, it would take a freak wind from the northeast to push it my way.

  30. de stijl says:


    It explains Michael Bay’s entire oeuvre and “career”.

  31. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Gustopher: (Sigh…) I was afraid that was the answer. Thanks… I guess…

  32. Teve says:
  33. Teve says:

    Jeff Tiedrich

    are you telling me that the guy who ran a scam university and a scam charity and a scam magazine and a scam airline and sold scam mortgages and scam steaks and scam vodka and scam fucking water for fuck’s sake, has been running a scam economy? fuck me, I did not see that coming

    10:09 AM · Aug 18, 2019·Twitter Web App

  34. Teve says:

    Charles Johnson
    ME: Wow, that Nazi march in Portland was bad.

    MULTIPLE WINGNUTS: Why, was the Democrat Party there?

    This is what the right has been reduced to: pure idiocy. Not even grade school logic skills. Just fucking brain-dead hatred, 24/7.

  35. de stijl says:


    I am not a big shakes guy. I retired early because I had enough and I’d had enough.

    My bank decided I needed a high price person to look after me. I barely qualified. Hey, they asked me – I didn’t ask them! I have very simple needs.

    Fairly good dude. Wharton, smart. Taught me about alpha and beta and when to pay attention to which. Bond yield curves.

    After Trump got elected, I told him I want to be super safe. Hedge up, turtle down, all that. Dude started saying that a trade war with China would be a benefit to the US economy.

    Okay. I never went to Wharton, and my Econ topped out a 201 level course a long time ago.

    I had to “fire” my investment advisor. That was super awkward.

  36. Gustopher says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: Now I want to go shoot an exploding deer. I’m not a gun person, and I am hapless enough that I want someone else to set up an exploding deer on some kind of a rail track somewhere where I can safely shoot at it with an assault rifle that I have no business being near, but it sounds fun.

    I don’t need to own an assault rifle, or an exploding deer target, I just want the option of doing it occasionally… just as I don’t need to own a roller coaster.

    Can gun clubs have automatic weapons? Shooting an automatic weapon at a small herd of exploding deer would be amazing.

    And then some kind of remote detonator to blow up the deer I missed, which might be all of them.

    They don’t have to be deer. Cows would be fine, and easier to hit. Some kind of exploding fake quadruped.


    I have fond memories of David Letterman tossing a piñata filled with butterscotch pudding off a five story tower, back when he had the late late show. It was great.

    I would prefer the fake exploding animals to be closer to that, but shooting piñatas just feels racist…