Saturday’s Forum

Welcome to August.

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:

    Portland sees peaceful night of protests following withdrawal of federal agents

    The withdrawal of federal agents from frontline policing of demonstrations in downtown Portland significantly reduced tensions in the city overnight.

    Protesters in support of Black Lives Matter once again rallied near the federal courthouse that became a flashpoint, and the scene of nightly battles amid the swirl of teargas, after Donald Trump dispatched agents to end what he called anarchy in the city after weeks of demonstrations.

    But in the absence of the federal officers, Thursday night’s protest passed off without major incident or intervention by the police.

    Gee, it’s almost like trump sent them in to provoke violence and sow chaos.

  2. Kathy says:

    The Banker’s Shuttle is no more.

    The piece makes a good points about why this exclusive service was declining. But, IMO, he neglects to mention the convenience of flying out of London City Airport. It’s closer to downtown, especially the financial district (ergo banker’s shuttle), and it’s small so it’s fast and easy to navigate.

    I’m thinking, too, there may be a market for a more conventional type of transatlantic flight, rather than the all-business class model, perhaps using the A220. the refueling stop in Ireland will remain, regardless of the plane or configuration used, because the short runway at London City prevents carrying enough fuel for the whole trip.

  3. sam says:

    Impotus Americanus from the Lincoln Project.

  4. OzarkHillbilly says:

    In 1999, the former Ku Klux Klan grand wizard David Duke predicted that the Internet would help give birth to a “coming white revolution”.

    The news media did not give him friendly coverage, he wrote on his website, but on the internet, he could reach supporters directly, starting a “chain reaction of racial enlightenment”.

    For the next 20 years, Duke, one of the most notorious hate group leaders in the US, was given free rein to spread his white supremacist message on one internet platform after another.

    Now, after years of protests and a surge of white supremacist terror attacks around the globe, social media companies are belatedly limiting Duke’s reach. Twitter said on Friday that it had permanently suspended his account, citing “repeated violations of the Twitter Rules on hateful conduct”. YouTube banned his account in June. Facebook banned Duke in 2018, the company said, more than a year after he participated in the violent white supremacist protest in Charlottesville, Virginia.

    Twitter’s decision to permanently ban Duke came more than a decade after Duke created his account, in 2009, and more than eight years after he started posting regularly, in 2012. He has tweeted tens of thousands of times, often weighing in on national events and sharing white supremacist and antisemitic conspiracies. He had more than 50,000 followers at the time his account was permanently suspended.

  5. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Something fun to read about:

    A Taiwanese octogenarian couple who run a small-town laundry service have become an online fashion sensation by modelling abandoned clothes on Instagram. Chang Wan-ji, 83, and his wife Hsu Sho-er, 84, have racked up nearly 600,000 followers on Instagram over the last month as their attitude-filled fashion portraits went viral. They have even been featured in the Taiwanese edition of Vogue and Marie Claire.

    The couple have run a laundry for decades in a small town near the central city of Taichung. Over the years, customers have either forgotten or failed to collect reams of clothing that the couple never felt able to throw away.

    Reef Chang, 31, their grandson, hit upon the idea of using the clothes to alleviate the couple’s boredom. “My grandpa and grandma were staring blankly at the streets because business wasn’t good,” he said. “I wanted to find something new they could enjoy doing.”

    The pair were naturals in front of the camera.
    “Modelling these clothes makes me feel 30 years younger,” said Chang. “Many people are telling me, ‘You are famous now and you look younger’.”

    Hsu felt so, too. “I am old in age but my heart is not ageing,” she said. “I like to put on pretty clothes and go out to have some fun.”

    They do have style.

  6. OzarkHillbilly says:
  7. Kathy says:


    He loves his people to death, and he’ll prove it.

    46,000+ dead officially, more likely closer to 100,000.

  8. Mikey says:

    Retired LTC Alexander Vindman has written a piece for the Washington Post.

    At no point in my career or life have I felt our nation’s values under greater threat and in more peril than at this moment. Our national government during the past few years has been more reminiscent of the authoritarian regime my family fled more than 40 years ago than the country I have devoted my life to serving.

    Our citizens are being subjected to the same kinds of attacks tyrants launch against their critics and political opponents. Those who choose loyalty to American values and allegiance to the Constitution over devotion to a mendacious president and his enablers are punished.

  9. Sleeping Dog says:


    …starting a “chain reaction of racial enlightenment entitlement”.

    Fixed that for him

  10. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Wa! Consider how small his waistline must measure that he can use a necktie as a cincture.

  11. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: Maybe it’s one of trump’s knee length ties.

  12. Bill says:

    The headline of the day*-

    RI mistakenly sent 176 tax refunds signed by ‘Mickey Mouse’ and ‘Walt Disney’

    *- Maybe a headline of the year candidate

  13. NICK says:

    @Mikey: I hope Biden gets in a place in his administration the man truly deserves.

  14. CSK says:

    Trump says he’s not only going to ban Tik-Tok in the U.S., he’s going to prevent any American company from buying it.

  15. Monala says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I love the final words of the article:

    The couple hope to use their new social media clout to promote the concept of “environmental fashion”.

    “Instead of following fast fashion and keep buying new clothes, we hope people can see that old and second-hand clothes can be fashionable if you arrange and combine them in new ways,” said Reef. “This would cause less damage to the earth and the environment.”

  16. Sleeping Dog says:

    Something I believe Biden should due early in his presidency is to retroactively promote LTC Alexander Vindman Ret. to Colonel.

  17. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Sleeping Dog: I wonder if he’d want to serve with a bunch of gutless f’s who didn’t have his back.

  18. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Sleeping Dog: Don’t have any objection to the move in principle, but I find myself asking whether this is an appropriate action for the President to take or is it just a different version of what Trump did for the Seal Team guy.

    Rhetorical question. Don’t care what the response is.

  19. Jax says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: It’s actually pretty damn interesting from a psychological viewpoint. My first response was “Fuck yeah, Biden should absolutely do whatever possible to advance this man’s career, he’s got MORALS and he stood up for what’s right and good in the world!”

    And then I realized that 40% of the Untied (edit…I left that on purpose) States also thought that way about the Navy Seal Trump pardoned.

    And now…. 😐

  20. Sleeping Dog says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    I don’t see him returning to service, this would be an adjustment to his discharge rank. If that isn’t practical, then some sort of presidential commendation.

  21. Kathy says:

    So here’s the latest idiot move Donald El Loco will have to back away from: Banning the media from the GOP convention.

    The forecast calls from a partial back-down by tomorrow, allowing only the right-wing media outlet du jour, followed by a full back-down early next week, culminating in a denial that this was ever proposed in the first place.

  22. Mister Bluster says:

    Another day. Another day, another bucket of sludge from Donald Trump:

    Donald Trump claims Anthony Fauci ‘wrong’ about cause of Covid-19 surge
    “We have more cases because we have tested far more than any other country, 60,000,000. If we tested less, there would be less cases.

    He is truly a madman…

  23. Jax says:

    @Mister Bluster: And he’s taking the lemmings with him.

  24. Gustopher says:

    Wilford Brimley has passed.

    He did, however, leave behind an amazing final tweet:

    What would be my wrestler name?

    Popular choices included:
    Under Quaker
    Killford Brimley

    #WWE #WilfordWrestlingEntertainment

  25. Mister Bluster says:

    The lemmings.
    I remember watching scenes from the Disney production White Wilderness. Must have been on the TV show Disneyland back in the ’50s.
    Stupid lemmings plunging to their deaths at the end of migration! Yikes!
    I learned many years ago that this was not the case.

    Carrick, who was a cameraman on the production, alleged that the filmmakers paid kids in Manitoba 25 cents to wrangle lemmings and then transport them south for filming. The crew members constructed spinning turntables covered in snow to jostle the lemmings and send them tumbling, and then proceeded to throw them off the cliff . The resulting footage was edited to make the mass animal killing look like natural suicide.

    Snopes is another source for this event.

    I wonder if snow covered spinning turntables near polling places in November…wait…no…nevermind…

  26. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Jax: It is problematical.