Sunday’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:

    Five people killed in shooting at gay nightclub in Colorado Springs

    Not much in the way of details, other than they beat the shit out of the asshole and held him for the cops.

    Five people have been killed and 18 injured in a shooting at a gay nightclub on Saturday night in Colorado Springs, Colorado, police have said. A suspect was in custody and was being treated for injuries after the attack at Club Q, Lieut Pamela Castro told a news conference.
    On its Facebook page, a statement from Club Q said it was “devastated by the senseless attack on our community … We thank the quick reactions of heroic customers that subdued the gunman and ended this hate attack.”

  2. OzarkHillbilly says:

    A strong smell of weed hangs over many New York neighborhoods, the result in part of cannabis decriminalization in 2019 – but cannabis growers in the state are at an impasse when it comes to getting their crops to market.

    Almost 300,000 pounds of the drug, worth as much as $750m, from last summer’s production at 200 state-licensed farms are stockpiled, without a place to be sold and in danger of deteriorating, according to a Bloomberg report on Saturday.

    Distribution issues are to blame. Although the New York City has vape shops selling marijuana and CBD products on almost every street, and there are mobile weed vans on Times Square, New York’s office of cannabis management has yet to approve retail dispensaries.

    Not one legal recreational dispensary has opened. Last week, a federal judge handed down an injunction that blocked the state from handing out licenses in Brooklyn and areas of the Hudson Valley region after a lawsuit claimed that the state’s cannabis equity program violates the US constitution.
    Without dispensaries, New York producers are for the moment stuck with newly harvested mountains of stock. “It’s an unclear path to market,” said Melany Dobson of Hudson Cannabis, a farm two hours north of New York City.

    Somebody put the cart before the horse.

  3. Jen says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I wondered about that equity requirement. A large part of the licenses are reserved for prior offenders, IIRC. People are going to push back if they believe they are being locked out of a profitable enterprise.

  4. CSK says:

    Damn, it’s a slow day at OTB, isn’t it?

  5. gVOR08 says:

    @CSK: Beat me to it. I got up to watch the F1 race and found only three comments at OTB. Checked back ten minutes ago and still only three comments. Slackers. Wake up and entertain me. I’m gonna go find something in Dr. T’s Tabs to comment on.

  6. Modulo Myself says:


    On the other hand, the drug war has been so one-sidedly fought against marginalized people that equity makes sense. Not only that, but dealing drugs is hard. The buyers are often white but the dealers/delivery services are almost always not. I’ve had a high-end weed delivery service for the past 10 years and if I text them, they’re at my place in an hour. They are very reliable. My view is that the people who were busting their asses to give people like me my illegal drugs deserve more than your average businessman.

  7. CSK says:


    The suspect is Anderson Lee Aldrich, 22. Police are treating this as a hate crime.

  8. Mister Bluster says:

    @CSK: …slow day at OTB,..

    On This Day in History
    Francisco Franco dead at 82
    Franco’s last public appearance was on 1 October 1975 when, despite his gaunt and frail appearance, he gave a speech to crowds from the balcony at the Royal Palace of El Pardo in Madrid. On 30 October 1975 he fell into a coma and was put on life support. Franco’s family agreed to disconnect the life-support machines.Officially, he died a few minutes after midnight on 20 November 1975 from heart failure, at the age of 82 – on the same date as the death of José Antonio Primo de Rivera, the founder of the Falange, in 1936. Historian Ricardo de la Cierva claimed, however, that he had been told around 6 pm on 19 November that Franco had already died.

    So what are we supposed to believe?
    (Wasn’t Reynolds going to check on this while he was in Spain?)

  9. CSK says:

    @Mister Bluster:

    An event that for years afterward brought us jokes about Franco being still dead.

  10. charon says:
  11. gVOR08 says:

    @Mister Bluster: Entertaining trivia about apparently hiding his death. But the important thing is that Chevy Chase was right, he’s still dead.

    Somebody suggested Spain as an example of democracy emerging from autocracy. As I read the story it was far from inevitable. Luck and skill. Skill on the part of the king and prime minister, and luck that the right guys were in line for those posts.

  12. Stormy Dragon says:


    The club in question was scheduled to have a family-friendly drag brunch this morning, so there is speculation that last night’s shooting was intended to disrupt that event.

  13. CSK says:

    @Stormy Dragon:

    So why not just shoot up the drag brunch itself?

  14. Mister Bluster says:

    @gVOR08:..far from inevitable

    Back in 1971 one of my college roommates visited Spain while in Europe. He was well versed in the history and language which I understand is not quite the same as what is spoken in Mexico. (He was fluent in that language too.) When he returned from Spain he claimed based on his conversations with the locals that he met that there would be a bloodbath when Franco died.
    I never did have the chance to catch up with him to find out his take on events after Franco’s demise.

  15. MarkedMan says:

    Just signed up for Mastodon. Fosstodon to be specific. Not sure how I’ll use it or for how long, but I’ve been part of many social networks over the decades and I’m always curious about how they will evolve and perhaps devolve. The concept of Mastodon reminds me most of Usenet, and so I would expect it to evolve much like that distributed social network did. The “great space” where there are perhaps a few hundred active uses and 5-10 times that many lurkers always seems great. It is when it becomes popular that the spammers, trolls and bots overwhelm it. But Mastodon is doing some things differently so we will see how that plays out.

  16. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Mister Bluster:

    (Wasn’t Reynolds going to check on this while he was in Spain?)

    Sure, but he won’t be able to let us know what he found out for a while. He got Covid on his trip and has to quarantine.

  17. Mister Bluster says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:..Covid
    Yeah. I saw that. Hope he recovers soon.

  18. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Mister Bluster: It was a happy day for my wife and her family. Her grandfather was one of the disappeared and her mother was born in prison during an air raid.

  19. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Mister Bluster: He was well versed in the history and language which I understand is not quite the same as what is spoken in Mexico.

    It’s not. I was conversant with Mexican Spanish when I went to Spain with my wife to meet her family. It’s a different language in many ways while the same in most. I managed, but it wasn’t easy. The same can be said of Colombian Spanish and Argentinian Spanish.

  20. Jen says:

    @Modulo Myself: Oh, I know. I completely understand the rationale behind it.

    When there’s money to be made, however, I can see how people would challenge the law. It’s a form of affirmative action, and that’s always going to chaff some.

  21. MarkedMan says:

    Okay, so I got approved on my Mastodon server, Fosstodon and quickly discovered two things:
    1) The “Federated” feed appears to be all the feeds posted on Mastodon (?). In any case, it is now scrolling by too fast to read. I’m sure it was fine when there were just thousands of users instead of millions.
    2) Fosstodon may be too specific in its nerdiness (Python jokes, discussions of open source development environments). So – if I want to change servers, how does that work? And given that there are 7K+ servers, how would I find one? Any ideas?

  22. CSK says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: @Mister Bluster:

    Michael says the symptoms haven’t risen to the annoyance level of cold.

  23. Beth says:


    I had to take 4 years of Spanish in college. Everything was fine until we got a teacher from Barcelona. The wheels came rocketing off the bus. I couldn’t understand a word that man said. I realized that I spent so much time around Spanish speakers from Mexico and Puerto Rico that that’s what my brain regarded as “proper” Spanish.

  24. Kathy says:

    @Mister Bluster:

    He was well versed in the history and language which I understand is not quite the same as what is spoken in Mexico.

    There are many variations between regions. Think of how Latin became Italian, French, Spanish, etc. Remember, too, there were people living in the Americas when the Spaniards imposed their language, and these were assimilated into the Spanish colonies rather than kept apart or driven out. Therefore, a lot of local languages influenced the development of Spanish in the Western hemisphere.

    Overall they are the same language, but there’s enough variation in word usage. and slang in particular, that it takes some effort sometimes to understand another region’s Spanish.

  25. Jax says:

    Round 2 of college tours. This time we’re in the biggest town in Wyoming, Casper. Roads were great.

    Don’t judge, but we’re going to Red Lobster. Neither one of my kids have ever been to a place that ACTUALLY serves crab or lobster of any sort. 😛 😛

    Round 1 was Laramie, Wyoming, at University of Wyoming. They require freshmen to live on campus, and the dorms are horrible, so we’ve crossed that one off the list until she’s a transfer student and can live off campus. The roads were shit on those days, of course.

  26. Just nutha says:

    @Jax: No judgement from this little cracker at all. I find Red Lobster perfectly cromulent. I like Olive Garden, too.

  27. Kathy says:


    I’m trying it out myself just now. You can look me up by, I think @na****@un**********.com I go by “Nareed.”

    We’ll see. I wasn’t active on Twitter, and not much on Fakebook. On the latter I liked links to interesting articles, particularly science and technology ones. that died more when paywalls started going up. That problem will recur everywhere.

  28. Mikey says:

    @Just nutha: Three words: Cheddar. Bay. Biscuits.

    Far better than they have any business being.

  29. Mister Bluster says:

    It’s been a while since I’ve been to a Red Lobster however I remember enjoying the meal at all of the three different locations. I remember one was in Columbia, Missouri with my mom and sister a few years after dad died. We were seated near the door to the kitchen and when a loud crashing sound came from behind those doors mom quipped: “Sounds like somebody’s brains fell on the floor!” I laughed out loud. Never knew she was such a jokester!
    Tried to make it to Laraime one December night before Christmas on my way to California via Salt Lake City. Got to Cheyenne where I-80 westbound was closed due to a blizzard. I had already made a non cancellable reservation on the Super 8 website for the Laramie motel. I called and told the desk clerk that I wasn’t going to make it due to the road being closed. “What do you want to do cancel?” He said. English was clearly not his first language. “Yes. If I can.”
    “If you can’t get here, you can’t get here. I will cancel the reservation and here is your cancellation number.” I thanked him and ended up at the Super 8 in Cheyenne.
    I did get to Salt Lake City a year or two later on my return from California and drove I-80 eastbound to Cheyenne where I turned south to Denver. Great scenery by towns like Echo, Green River, Red Desert and Elk mountain. Some day I want to drive I-90 out that way.

  30. Kathy says:


    Barcelona is in a region of Spain called Catalonia, and many there speak Catalan as well as Spanish. This may affect both languages.

    One of my favorite Spanish musicians is a man named Joan Manuel Serrat, who is from Barcelona. Many of his songs, in Spanish, require a trip to the dictionary. Many more use expressions that are odd. For instance in “Mediterraneo” he says “Si un dia para mi mal viene a buscarme la Parca.” This translates literally as “If one day to my bad Death comes looking for me.” What he means is “If someday to my misfortune Death comes for me.”

    On first hearing it, one can deduce the meaning from the context in the rest of that part. He speaks of having his boat sunk at sea, and where he wants to be buried and why (it’s really a cheerful song for all that). But the words themselves are not immediately comprehensible.

  31. MarkedMan says:


    Don’t judge, but we’re going to Red Lobster.

    No judgement from me. I don’t like Red Lobster myself, but on the other hand I live in an ocean-side state and can get truly great seafood even at neighborhood restaurants that serve only Natty Boh (National Bohemian), Bud and Bud Light.

    I have long since passed the age where I feel the need to feel superior over what I like, or even worse, don’t like. If anyone finds something they like, I’m happy for them.

    (Except the Yankees)

  32. Jax says:

    Red Lobster was everything the girls wanted, so I’m happy. And it’s a Sunday night, so that terrible road construction on I-25 they’ve got going on is doable. I hope to navigate AROUND that tomorrow.

    @Mister Bluster: When we were driving to Laramie last week, we could see NOTHING as far as scenery, until we got to Elk Mountain. Then the ground blizzard cleared for a couple miles and we could see the cloud ceiling hovering about halfway up Elk Mountain. It was pretty cool looking!

  33. Sleeping Dog says:


    Given that you live in Wyoming, we coastal elites will forgive you for going to Red Lobster. 🙂

  34. grumpy realist says:

    Looks like there’s another potential pitfall for Musk’s Twitter to fall into….copyright law.

    (Basically, there’s nobody home to take down uploaded movie bits that violate copyright. Anyone got some Mickey Mouse cartoons to put up?)

  35. grumpy realist says:

    ….and the 4channing of Twitter proceeds apace.

  36. MarkedMan says:

    @Kathy: Having trouble signing in on my iPad. (Signed up on my Mac with an obfuscating email). I’ll get it sorted tomorrow and follow you.

  37. Jax says:

    @Sleeping Dog: I know, I was telling the kids it’s not even close to the seafood you can get on either coast….but it’ll do, given our location! 😛

  38. Kathy says:

    @grumpy realist:

    What if St. Elon buys Disney?

    More seriously, or maybe not, how about an anonymously produced and published short of Mickey Mouse doing drugs?


    I appreciate it.

    But I don’t expect I’ll post much.

  39. Gustopher says:

    @Kathy: I am @Ro***********@ha*******.io — I mostly just post little drawings I do on my iPad.