Tuesday’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:

    Leonard Glenn Francis, known as Fat Leonard, who pleaded guilty in 2015 to offering $500,000 in bribes to navy officers, was due to be sentenced in a few weeks.

    The supervisory deputy, US Marshal Omar Castillo, said Francis fled from his home on Sunday morning, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported. Officers who arrived at the property found it empty but discovered parts of his broken GPS tracker bracelet.
    Neighbours told authorities they saw U-Haul removal trucks outside the property in which Francis was held in the days leading up to his escape, Castillo said, according to the report by the San Diego Union-Tribune. “He was planning this out, that’s for sure,” Castillo added.

    Right on top of things, these guys were.

    He had been acting as a cooperating witness for a federal prosecutor but was due to be sentenced on 22 September.

    Not cooperating anymore, is he?

    Castillo said law enforcement agencies would be notified.

    Well… That certainly makes me feel better.

  2. MarkedMan says:

    I don’t know much about oil and gas production and markets, but it seems to me that by using the natural gas spigot to try to bring Europe to its knees, Russia is eating its seed corn. There had been a growing movement away from fossil fuels and that has just gotten a giant boost. Down the road, if it were just policy preventing the purchase of Russian oil and gas, that could probably be managed. But if the demand in Europe dries up, then they will have to sell to other countries. China is a possibility, but they will pay the absolute minimum. And developing countries simply don’t have the funds to buy significantly more at current European prices. So, to make up the reduction of European demand, they will have to slash prices. My understanding is that Russia has significantly higher production costs than most other producers. I don’t know how much of that is corruption, or contracts and agreements that they might abrogate, but in the end it seems to me that they have guaranteed an economic crisis down the road.

  3. Michael Cain says:

    The short-term problem for Russia trying to replace Europe as a customer is that so much of their huge pipeline network is oriented towards delivering to Europe. It’s not like they have huge empty pipelines waiting to carry gas to China, or idle liquefied natural gas plants/ships.

  4. MarkedMan says:
  5. MarkedMan says:

    @Michael Cain: And given what we’ve been learning about their weapons design and production, you have to wonder if they even have the capability to built new infrastructure into China without Western help, nevermind the funds.

  6. MarkedMan says:

    I find this both frightening and additional proof that being a billionaire doesn’t automatically mean you are not a gullible idiot:

    The Washington Post reports that Mathias Döpfner, the German billionaire who bought Politico last year, sent an email to his closest executives weeks before the 2020 election asking if they wanted to gather on Election Day to “pray that Donald Trump will again become President of the United States of America.”

  7. OzarkHillbilly says:

    After a nice day (all but perfect weather) at the bike races, I actually got a night’s worth of sleep. Hooray. I’ll celebrate my victories no matter how small, or infrequent they may be.

    @MarkedMan: I don’t know how much of that is corruption, or contracts and agreements that they might abrogate,

    It sure as shit ain’t environmental protections.

  8. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @MarkedMan: Even gullible idiots can get lucky and strike it rich.

  9. MarkedMan says:

    This type of thing drives me up the wall: “The Biden administration is gambling that a little-studied vaccine can stop monkeypox”. Yes, we are using a vaccine that has never been tested in humans against monkeypox, only animals, because the alternative vaccine would yield more fatalities than monkeypox would, especially in those with compromised immune systems. But what has that to do with politics? Why is it a Biden Administraton gamble? Would a different administration use a different vaccine that was tested to be safe and effective in humans against monkeypox? Where would such a vaccine come from?

    Everything is politics. Lazy writing, lazy editing, lazy journalism.

  10. OzarkHillbilly says:

    From Pakistan’s biggest lake may burst banks after draining attempts fail:

    Record monsoon rains and melting glaciers have brought floods that have affected 33 million people and killed at least 1,314, including 458 children, Pakistan’s National Disaster Management Agency said in an update on Monday.

    Satellite images have shown that a third of the country is now underwater. More than 1.6m homes have been damaged since mid-June.

    I looked at the satellite images and suspect that “a third of the country is now underwater” is a bit hyperbolic and what they really mean is “a third of the country has been affected by flooding”. Regardless, it is a disaster of epic proportions.

  11. JohnSF says:

    Gas and oil are very different cases.
    Moscow earned $97 billion from hydrocarbons sales in the first six months of this year, of which about $74 billion oil

    Thing with natural gas is, transport is a sod.
    Pipelines are best, but even they are more engineering-intensive than oil pipes.
    Non-pipeline gas require huge investments in refrigerated, pressurised bulk LNG ships that are way more expensive than oil tankers.
    Plus cryogenic LNG terminals; plus liquefaction and gasification plants.

    That’s why natural gas markets and prices are far more localised than oil.

    Exporting oil to a low-capitalised third world country: pretty easy.
    Exporting LNG? Not easy; likely not possible at all.

    So, if Russia can’t export gas by pipeline to Europe, it’s going to be very difficult to export it at all.
    Russia lacks LNG export terminal at scale.
    Or LNG tankers, for that matter; and using third party tankers may be problematic.
    How many LNG ships does China have? I don’t know.

    Other option is build more export pipe: but where to?
    Middle East? Selling snow to an eskimo.
    India? Via Afghanistan and Pakistan? I have doubts.

    So, China it is; so, build thousands of miles of pipeline from the North Urals, right the way across Siberia and Mongolia, entirely opposite direction from current pipe net.
    The capital cost will be huge.

    And when you get it to China, and your only customer in Beijing says “Now, how about a nice 25% discount?” ?

    Oil is easier.
    But not that easy: Russian oil sells at a discount now (though the overall price surge has offset that quite a bit).

    As for gas, till they get new pipes/and or LNG handling capacity built, they can either cap the wells (how problematic that is for a restart: dunno) or flare the gas.

    Putin probably hopes that after he coerces Europe to abandon Ukraine and he resolves his “little local difficulty” it’s back to business as usual.
    He’s quite delusional:
    – he can no longer break the EU: left it too late
    – Ukraine not going to surrender in any event
    – business as usual has exited, pursued by a bear

    German Economy Minister Robert Habeck:

    “The gas flows from Russia no longer play a role in my calculations,” ”
    “It would have been a surprise if things had turned out differently,”
    “The only thing that is reliable from Russia is the lie,”
    “We will have to manage without Putin.”

    Oil is going to be easier to sell.
    But as the price comes down, and the discount likely remains, and with the gas knocked out of the equation, the Russian economic model is going to be facing serious headwinds.
    Especially given the erosion of their capital plant by Western export sanctions.

  12. Kathy says:


    According to Rachel Maddow in her book “Blowout”, sanctions really hurt Russia when Exxon had to pull out of a project to develop oil fields under the Kara Sea in the Arctic. Russia’s oil companies couldn’t do it on their own.

  13. JohnSF says:

    Speaking of things Russian.
    Anyone recall all those confident “Russia has inexhaustible supplies of artillery shells” assessments?
    Signs that may have been not entirely correct in the falling rates of fire since midsummer.
    And now: Russia buying millions of rockets and shells from North Korea, US intelligence says

    Of course, this could be to prep for a new offensive.
    But it could also be because stocks were lower (especially usable stocks) and Russian industry is having trouble increasing output.
    Some reports that shell and rocket casings production aren’t an issue (yet), but explosives. propellants and fuses are.

  14. Jen says:

    @MarkedMan: In addition to the great response by @JohnSF, there are a few other things to note, I believe. One, Russia is looking for a short-term hit. What they want to do is knock Europe so hard they cave and come back. Timing is on their side for this, because infrastructure is still dependent on on-demand fuels like LNG. Most of our focus is on the impact on consumers but really the ones who need high-intensity, reliable on-demand fuel are manufacturers, and Putin is probably banking on that being a big pain point–if you have high fuel prices/no gas/people freezing AND businesses buckling under the fact that they can’t produce…that’s bad. Two, the assumption that a smooth transition to non-fossil fuels is imminent is probably a bit aggressive. In some places, like Orkney, they’re already at 100% renewables, but that can be attributed to high resources (e.g., a ton of wind) for a limited number of people. It’s harder to extrapolate that out for the whole population of Europe.

    Germany is bringing nuclear and coal plants back online in the hopes of mitigating the crisis this winter. Bloomberg just reported that Poland is considering handing out smog masks because they believe people will resort to burning trash to keep warm.

    It will take more than one winter to become fully disengaged from fossil fuels, but Putin appears to be strategizing that he’ll only need one winter to rock European economies so badly that people revert to self-interest rather than an objective of helping Ukraine.

  15. Jen says:

    Every accusation is a confession. Every single one. Via CNN:

    Newly obtained surveillance video shows fake Trump elector escorted operatives into Georgia county’s elections office before voting machine breach

    A Republican county official in Georgia escorted two operatives working with an attorney for former President Donald Trump into the county’s election offices on the same day a voting system there was breached, newly obtained video shows.
    The breach is now under investigation by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and is of interest to the Fulton County District Attorney, who is conducting a wider criminal probe of interference in the 2020 election.
    The video sheds more light on how an effort spearheaded by lawyers and others around Trump to seek evidence of voter fraud was executed on the ground from Georgia to Michigan to Colorado, often with the assistance of sympathetic local officials.

    These people. I mean really, come on.

    Text messages, emails and witness testimony filed as part of a long-running civil suit into the security of Georgia’s voting systems show Latham communicated directly with the then-Coffee County elections supervisor about getting access to the office, both before and after the breach. One text message, according to the court document, shows Latham coordinating the arrival and whereabouts of a team “led by Paul Maggio” that traveled to Coffee County at the direction of Powell.
    Three days after the breach, Latham texted the Coffee County elections supervisor, “Did you all finish with the scanner?” According to court documents, Latham testified she did not know what Hall was doing in Coffee County. But when confronted with her texts about the scanner, she asserted her Fifth Amendment rights.

    Lock her up? Isn’t that what they say?

  16. Sleeping Dog says:


    On a subject closer to your home, Liz the political daughter of Enoch Powell?

    The thought that she would be the second coming of Margaret Thatcher was disturbing enough.

    Rather than restore strenghthen the empire, she’s more likely to cause its final dissolution, starting with the unification of Ireland.

  17. Scott says:


    Some reports that shell and rocket casings production aren’t an issue (yet), but explosives. propellants and fuses are.

    Makes me wonder how good NK manufacturing capabilities are. Fuses are notoriously twitchy. Makes me feel bad that the Russian grunts/conscripts will bear the burden of munitions accidents and cookoffs.

  18. MarkedMan says:


    the assumption that a smooth transition to non-fossil fuels is imminent is probably a bit aggressive

    Oh, I agree. But I think it must also shift corporate thinking a bit. Up to 2021 I suspect there was a lot of “grumble, grumble, grumble, tree-huggers making us shift from good old reliable gas, slow down the changeover, give us a break” to “Gas isn’t reliable! Why are these projects moving so slowly!”

  19. JohnSF says:


    Putin appears to be strategizing that he’ll only need one winter to rock European economies so badly that people revert to self-interest

    Yep, that’s his calculation, or you can paint me red and call me a radish.

    But he made a massive mistake; he expected a quick win at first, then perhaps a diplomatic stalemate, and didn’t expect Europe to to pre-empt.
    Now he’s left it too late.
    EU gas storage now at 80% and rising.
    Storage alone is enough to meet all demand for a period of about 3 months, at winter consumption rates.
    And it’s not storage alone.
    LNG flows are increasing; Norway, UK and Netherlands are all working to increase supply potential from the North Sea.
    UK North Sea gas output is up 25%: a major achievement driven by high prices and engineering effort.

    Non-Russian sources are now 80% of total European supply; up from 60% at the beginning of the year.
    EU and states are intervening massively in the energy markets and prepping for energy rationing if required.

    This winter will be tough, make no mistake.
    But I’m increasing sure it will be manageable.
    And all the more cause to redouble the arms supplies to Ukraine: they turn off the gas, we turn up the pain.

  20. Andy says:

    Don’t usually read or comment in these threads, but just wanted to note that Allahpundit’s real name is “ Nick Cattogio”.

  21. CSK says:

    How do you know?

  22. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @MarkedMan: I like the cat’s reaction, too. As if swatting at and biting the metal gate will make it let go.

  23. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Scott: When I was living in SK, the conventional wisdom was that NK artillery had a peak operational ability of about 60%. Most but not all of the offline capacity involved guns needing repair, though.

  24. CSK says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:
    Well, why not give it a try? Swatting and biting works with almost anything else.

  25. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @CSK: And why does it matter? Is Nick Cattogio noteworthy as himself, too? A quick google of the name linked to guy who deal in deals–works for vulture capitalist/holdings company–and might be older than I am, and a guy who writes for Entertainment Weekly.

  26. CSK says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:
    I googled the name, too, and got what you did.

    But it seems that this morning The Dispatch and Wikipedia identified Allahpundit as Cattogio.

    Maybe he can call himself “The Artist Formerly Known as Allahpundit.”

  27. Michael Reynolds says:


    Anyone recall all those confident “Russia has inexhaustible supplies of artillery shells” assessments?

    And what are they not getting from North Korea? Precision munitions. These are nothing but ‘dumb’ shells and missiles. Great for massacring civilians, great for attacking large enemy concentrations, not so great for doing what the Ukrainians can do: blow up HQs and weapons dumps and the bridges Russians need to escape the north bank of the Dniepr.

    Dumb missiles do not beat smart missiles. Recovered Russian munitions indicates their ‘smart’ weapons are about 20 years behind the curve. Still deadly, but supplies are limited and they cannot just crank up the production lines, not with sanctions in place.

    As for replacing the European natural gas market with a pipeline from the Urals to the PRC, Step One for Putin would have to be placing a call to Exxon and BP, because the Russians don’t have the skillz.

    Small but interesting note: China’s version of Visa or Amex, which Russians had been using, just stopped service to Russia. Is Xi mentally writing off Putin as a useless putz?

  28. Beth says:
  29. JohnSF says:

    @Michael Reynolds:
    I wouldn’t entirely write off old fashions “dumb” shells and rockets.
    The Ukrainians use them in bulk themselves; estimates of thousands of rounds per day.
    Western supplies of standard shells to Ukraine is not public; but I’ve seen what appear to be realistic estimates of at least half a million.

    With a modern computer calibrated gunlaying system that measures every variable for every shot and adjusts to compensate, and highly trained gunners, they can be pretty accurate.

    Circular error probability of 50% on a target with a known position, M777 155mm howitzer: 50 metres at 25 km range.
    More than good enough for a lot of strikes on larger or dispersed targets.

    In the current battles Ukraine will pretty certainly be using PGM to hit bridges, command posts, etc.
    But the Russian front lines and concentrations will be getting plenty of attention from standard artillery; and rueing it.

    On the pipelines, strong agree.
    Russia hasn’t the technology or skills needed.
    Look at the compressor for Nord1 that had to be serviced by Siemens in Canada recently.

    Even China doesn’t have the skillsets, yet.
    Even WITH western companies on the job, pipelines to China that could carry the gas currently despatched to Europe would take decades and hundreds of billions.
    Maybe the Chinese would invest that sort of level.
    But then fat chance of Russia ever seeing more than a red cent for it.

  30. Andy says:

    @CSK: It was on the Dispatch newsletter this morning.

  31. Andy says:

    @CSK: It was on the Dispatch newsletter this morning.

  32. Michael Cain says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    As for replacing the European natural gas market with a pipeline from the Urals to the PRC, Step One for Putin would have to be placing a call to Exxon and BP, because the Russians don’t have the skillz.

    The Central Asia-to-China gas pipeline (1,800 kilometers or so) is a working demonstration that China and Kazakhstan have most of the skillz. The three parallel pipelines have about the same total capacity as Nordstream 1. The first of the three lines was built in about 2.5 years, the other two took about a year each. China’s West-East pipelines are even more impressive, each with a main trunk line running 4,000 or 5,000 kilometers.

    There may be some question as to whether China can build the necessary compressors for the pipeline. They have tended to buy from overseas, but there are a number of companies that can build suitable equipment. Given that the UK has a new PM and appears ready to fall into a nasty recession, Rolls-Royce may be quite interested in selling China another batch of compressors and not asking where they’re going to be used.

  33. CSK says:

    Yes, I saw. Curious, after all this time, that he’s going with his real name. Allahpundit was a brand. Well, at least at The Dispatch he’ll be able to give full voice to his anti-Trump sentiments without enduring an avalanche of vulgar ad hominen insults.

  34. charon says:

    @Michael Cain:

    I pretty much agree, technology is not an issue, Exxon and BP not needed. Pipe and compressors not exactly high tech.

    What might be an issue is obtaining a massive amount of line pipe, the world must have a limited capacity for large diameter line pipe manufacture. And, too, a lot of big compressors. That, plus probably years to order the pipe, get it manufactured and installed.

    (BTW, I am a retired engineer with some relevant experience, including a few years with Exxon).

  35. Kathy says:


    I recall reading that most of the bombs dropped during Gulf War I were “dumb” or “iron” bombs, not the vaunted “smart” bombs that got all the press.

    Think of it like the Battle of Britain. The RAF mostly used Hurricanes and Spitfires to defend the UK. The number of the former was vastly larger (they were easier and cheaper to make*), but the latter took all the glory.

    *I’m 99% certain it was largely made of wood and fabric.

  36. charon says:


    The Spitfires were a pretty even match for the German BF-109’s. Hurricanes, not so much.

  37. Kathy says:


    Some hidden gems:

    The decision marked the first time since 1869 that someone was removed from public office for violating a clause in the 14th Amendment that was intended to keep former Confederates from holding elected positions,

    What do you know? It also keeps out current Confederates 🙂

    I’d rewrite the comments the removed man made to ‘Pressed for comments, he indicated “I’ve learned nothing and forgotten nothing.” ‘

  38. JohnSF says:

    @Michael Cain:
    Thing is, CAC pipeline is about 1,200 miles.
    From Urals North to the Chinese border is about 4000 miles.

    Siberia Gas pipeline, from the Chayanda gas field to China began planning and design in 2007, construction began 2012, completed 2019. Twelve years total, 7 years for construction.
    And that is about half the length to Urals North.

    As for UK politics:
    Liz Truss, the new PM, is if anything more hawkish on Russia (and China) than Johnson.
    Wallace remains at Defence, and Tugendhat, another hardliner, expected as Security Minister.
    Any Rolls-Royce exec who signed up to such a deal would be taking a big risk of spending considerable time behind bars, recession or no recession.

    This is not even a question of party politics any longer.
    The entire establishment now sees Russia as an enemy that must be defeated.
    They’ve crossed too many lines, too many times, and made a damned nuisance of themselves too often.

  39. Kathy says:


    Well, the Russian electoral interference favored an issue of the UKIP, not the Conservatives. Besides, it brought down a Conservative PM.

    Had they taken down a Labor PM and handed Boris a minority government…

  40. CSK says:

    A Ukrainian nuclear plant that stores radioactive waste has been damaged.

  41. JohnSF says:


    I’m 99% certain (the Hurricane fighter) was largely made of wood and fabric.

    Hurricanes did have a lot of wood formers and fabric skinning over a tubular steel frame, steel cockpit shell, and duraluminium wings.
    Spitfires also sometimes had wood components: propellors, wing fairings, wingtip and tail formers.
    Also, arguably one of the best aircraft of WW2, the de Haviland Mosquito, was entirely wooden framed, and nicknamed the “Wooden Wonder”.

  42. JohnSF says:

    The shell production I was thinking about there was Russian (and loks like another example of dodgy dealings re. shell contracts, as well as possible explosives shortage )
    What I’ve read, seems the NorKs are just selling out of their stockpiles.
    What that stock quality is like? *shrugs*

  43. JohnSF says:


    Spitfires were a pretty even match for the German BF-109’s. Hurricanes, not so much.

    True; but a standard RAF tactic was for the Spitfires to engage the escort fighters, while Hurricanes chopped the bombers to pieces.
    RAF reporting was that if the German fighters attempted to engage the Hurricanes, they had enough manoeuvrability to evade, especially at lower altitudes.

  44. Kathy says:


    At one time the largest airplane ever built was made of wood. Howard Hughes’ Hercules, more popularly known as The Spruce Goose.

    It flew only once, so it qualifies as a real airplane.

  45. JohnSF says:

    @Sleeping Dog:

    Liz the political daughter of Enoch Powell?

    Let’s hope not.
    Can you repost the link; it’s not working for me.

    Ah think I’ve found via google; New York Times article by Kojo Koram?

    I’ll read and get back to you.
    But I’d note, Truss generally tends to model herself on Margaret Thatcher; Powell rather disdained Thatcher.
    He was a very different breed of cat indeed.

  46. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Jonathan Pie

    Boris Johnson: A tribute.

    For JohnSF, on the off chance he hasn’t seen it yet.

  47. Jim Brown 32 says:

    @Scott: I doubt the NKs have all their munitions materials sourced in-country. Time for some supply-chain mischievousness by our 3-letter guardians.

  48. wr says:

    @JohnSF: “The entire establishment now sees Russia as an enemy that must be defeated. They’ve crossed too many lines, too many times, and made a damned nuisance of themselves too often.”

    And, I suspect, most Tories have taken so much Russian money they need to act tough to inoculate themselves against charges of being bought.

  49. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Jazz the Professor

    #OTD Sept 5, 1992: A small boy about 3yrs old, dressed in a child-sized KKK robe & pointed hat, touches his reflection in a riot shield as a Black trooper holding the shield looks down at him. The iconic photo was taken by Todd Robertson at a Gainesville, GA, KKK rally.

    Nah… That’s not history, it’s CRT.

  50. dazedandconfused says:


    As an aside, the Brits pushed laminate state-of-the-art a long, long way in a big fat hurry in WW2 to make wood props that could withstand what a Merlin engine and gyroscopic forces can produce. Those processes are still pretty much the best even today. Should you find yourself with time to kill google up Hydulignum.

  51. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Fred Schultz

    The difference between boys and girls is subtle…

    Laughing my ass off because my mother did, often and loudly.

  52. Sleeping Dog says:


    Yes, Kojo Koram. That name sounds like an Ian Fleming character.

  53. JohnSF says:

    Some have; some haven’t, IMO
    Johnson was certainly suspicously chummy with Lebvedev.
    Among others (eg George Osborne)
    And they welcomed, or least studiously avoided looking at, oligarch-adjacent donations to the Party coffers.
    OTOH at least some of those oligarchs-in-exile are thought to be unfriends of Putin.

    And some Tories are pretty certainly “clean”: May, Tugendhat, Wallace etc.

    What is perhaps more important is the stand-off between the defence/security establishment, and it seems most of the banking/business corporate elite on one side.
    And the “grey money” faction in London: offshore private wealth funds, tax avoidance, “reputation management”, conciergage, and all the rest that have got fat on the fees paid by Russians on the other.
    But then, the enablers can always turn to Arabians, or Chinese, or whoever, if Russian cash dries up.
    (One problem is you may be able to rent a bent Tory; but can you buy and rely?)

    But once the “generalised state” becomes serious about an issue, the Russian hedgies, despite their billions of managed money, are small potatoes.

  54. JohnSF says:

    Actually, not generally a great fan of Pie.
    The points he makes are fair enough; but for my taste a bit too strident.
    I prefer the rapier to the sledgehammer.
    More wit, less shouting, please Mr Pie.

    Though “hubris, incompetence, deceit and shit hair” is a good line, I grant.

  55. Kathy says:

    For this weekend I’m thinking shredded beef in green salsa. This is straightforward enough, but boiling beef to shred leaves some beef broth. I’ll mix some in with the salsa. For the rest, I’m thinking to use it to make rice and barley with mushrooms and sliced almonds.

  56. Michael Reynolds says:

    @Michael Cain:
    As long as sanctions are in place Rolls will have to choose between selling compressors to Putin and engines to Lockheed and Boeing.

    I don’t write off dumb bombs – as I pointed out, great for blowing up ground. Not so much use for mobile targets or HQs or hitting a bridge while not hitting a dam.

    Possible intel coup: we may find out how much of Nork ordnance actually works.

  57. Michael Reynolds says:

    Covid has finally gotten close. My adult daughter is down with it – mild but noticeable symptoms so far. Irony: she is a fanatic masker. My second daughter works in a grocery store FFS, is not big on masking, and so far she’s clear. Unfortunate timing, we were all in a Marin County ‘hotel’ while visiting the other daughter. My wife and I are neg still, but trapped now in a Courtyard by Marriott to watch over the sick kid.

  58. Jax says:

    I don’t know why, but I’m taking an inordinate amount of pleasure in Couy Griffin getting kicked off the county commission in New Mexico. In fact, I’m downright…..gloating. 😛 😛

  59. JohnSF says:

    @Sleeping Dog:
    @Sleeping Dog:
    OK a few thoughts.

    Basically, much as I dislike both, IMO Koram has worked up a hypothetical “neo imperial” model of the political-economy aimed at by some right-wingers and is attempting to jam both Powell and Truss into it.

    I don’t think it fits either that well, and I don’t think there is a clear ideological line of inheritance between them, except some points common to a LOT of Conservative “econo-liberal” right.

    Notably being anti-EEC/EC/EU and in favour of “free markets” and “small state”; but more as totems than practical goals.
    And anti-migrant stance; but for Powell that was cultural, and outright racial; for Truss it’s pandering to a party/voter base that is motivated more by economic issues and a generalised xenophobia as part of dislike of change.
    (Racism and xenophobia are both unpleasant; but quite distinct IMO)

    One point: I can’t see a hypotheical PM Powell appointing Suella Braverman as Home Sec, Kwasi Kwarteng as Chancellor, etc.
    Because he was a genuine, full on and flaunt it, racist.

    Powell seeking an “empire of capital”?
    He seems to have been much more insular than that; he thought a “free market” UK could make it’s own way in the world by reverting to non/pre imperial aspects of it’s economy; and far more concerned with his concepts of internal “liberty” and racial solidarity.

    Powell was notorious for being not merely anti-American but considering the US to be an enemy; and an advocate of friendship with the Soviet Union.
    He was a free market fundamentalist, against any state intervention in busieness, and a monetarist, an adcovate of fiscal limitation, low taxes and free trade.
    But also a supporter of the NHS, the welfare state, and of trade unions.
    With the proviso that neither unions nor business should be involved in government decision making, or receive government favour.
    Powell thought fairly straightforward “free market”/”sound money” policies would automatically cure Britains problems.
    Truss seems more inclined to smile upon “neo-liberal” schemes for overturning the current political economy; though I suspect they’ll get dropped in office, due to the political realities.

    Truss is rather like Thatcher: visceral antagonistic on political and economic (and class?) grounds to unions.
    Another odd thing about Powell: by the standards of a lot of Tories of his generation who were on the right (compared to the One Nation faction on the left of the party) he was not a class warrior.
    Some right-Tories of that time could barely conceal their fear and contempt for the working class.

    Where Truss is on that, can’t be certain. But Tory class antagonism seems to have largely faded, due to the decline of old gentry dominance in the party.

    Powell could also be notably liberal on some social matters: he was in favour of liberalising divorce, and voted to decriminalise homosexuality.
    Famously regarded capital punishment as “utterly repugnant”.
    Truss seems more inclined to social conservatism, at least so long as it gets her votes.

    Which seems another point: Powell was generally driven by convictions.
    Truss is far more a creature of ambition; her “ideas” seem genuine, but shallow, and always suspiciously aligned with her self interest, and the opinions of those around her.
    Hence being an ardent Remainer, when that seemed the smart thing to be.
    Like Johnson; but unlike Powell.

    The major “similarity” is that Truss is now held up, incongrously, as the steadfast champion of Brexit.
    And Thatcher has been retconned into being anti-Euro, which she was not when in power.
    And Powell is, of course, the fount of the True Faith for the dedicated Eurosceptical.
    Which is true enough, indeed.

    As I say I dislike both.
    Powell was genuinely creepy, and nasty.
    Despite all the points that in another person could have added up to being good, he was crippled by an enormous intellectual arrogance, a tendency to binary absolutism that was strange in s (British) Conservative of his vintage, a total lack of sense of proportion or consideration that he could possibly be in error, and above all a seething racist populism dressed up in enough educated discourse to impress the impressionable.

    Truss: we shall see.
    First indicators are not good.
    But she’ll have to go hard to match him for sheer poisonousness.

    But again: Koram’s “general theory of post-imperialist Conservatism” seems inadequate to me.
    Explains both too much and too little.

  60. Jax says:

    @Michael Reynolds: The dominoes are starting to fall from our “super-spreader event” on the 20th…and actually nobody from OUR party yet, but the bar that was having a pig roast and was open all night long for dancing and drinking after our party quit partying…..all the staff members have been out with Covid the last 10 days.

  61. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Michael Reynolds: All 4 of my bros/sis’s and their husbands/wives have gotten covid. A fair # of their children have as well. My wife and I have avoided it so far, so have my sons, their spouses and their children. My wife’s daughter? Not quite (tho her husband has so far). A number of my sibling’s children have gotten it as well.

    So far I have lost only one person, my long time running buddy Timoteo. RIP brother, you had a life well lived.

  62. Just nutha says:

    @CSK: is it possible that the Allahpundit brand is owned by Hot Air?

  63. CSK says:

    @Just nutha:
    I don’t think so. He seems to have used it before he joined HotAir.

  64. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    I’m not sure that his having used it before would make a difference. Salem Communications could have applied for a trademark on the name if he didn’t already have one. It either keeps the brand out of the market or permits other people to use it at the behest of the owner (as in Elery Queen Mysteries).

  65. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Not big on going down headfirst, but I did like spiking the landing at the bottom.

  66. Kathy says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    Best wishes for a speedy recovery.

    BTW, and speaking in general, masking alone only does so much. Someone who wears a mask but also socializes a lot, goes out to eat, to movies, concerts, etc., specially among largely unmasked hordes, also has a high risk of catching COVID.

    Then there’s random chance (there’s always random chance). At the office, the majority of the people in my area have caught COVID, but not all. Several who haven’t don’t mask at work, have been going out, etc. My strategy of continued masking and continued avoidance of most palces and events, is to reduce the odds of catching it.

    So far, it’s working.

  67. CSK says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:
    Anything’s possible, but the name Allahpundit is so associated with anti-Trumpism that why would HA want to use it when they dumped Allahpundit himself for anti-Trumpism? The name/brand is toxic to them now.

  68. Jen says:

    @Michael Reynolds: Here’s hoping for a quick recovery (your daughter) and/or total avoidance for you and your wife.

    My dad (86) got covid, and my mom and sister figured their time was nigh and didn’t bother to try and avoid it when he got sick–they figured they were both goners anyway. Neither of them ever tested positive, so yeah, full vaccination + boosters does still have the potential to ward off this goo.

    Good luck!

  69. Michael Cain says:

    @Michael Reynolds:
    Completely off topic… Years ago my company sent me to California for three days to do technical due diligence on potential investments. Travel — tells you how long ago this was — stuck me in a Courtyard by Marriott. The first night I was simply too tired to go look for a place to eat. The “captain” in the attached restaurant, and the “cook” that was working the greatly underused kitchen, did magnificently for me. Everything they served me for three nights was excellent, none of it appeared anywhere on the menu. Almost every “stumbled into something great to eat by accident” in my life was in California.

  70. a country lawyer says:

    @JohnSF: During the Battle of Britain a little more than two thirds of the German aircraft shot down were by the Hawker Hurricane. Most of those were the Luftwaffe bombers. The Hurricane was also more resilient to enemy gunfire than the Spitfire, because the rounds would pass through the cloth covered fuselage without further damage.

  71. Mister Bluster says:

    …tapeworms in tiaras…entitled sack of minge…

    I’m going to have to listen to this again to see what else I can add to my repertoire.

  72. Just nutha says:

    @CSK: Not saying they would, just don’t want him to.

    But I can see an “I’m back and have seen the truth” post possible in the future. People who read Hot Air aren’t all that smart.

  73. Mister Bluster says:

    For a long time, maybe more than a year, the local Golden Arches has sold all three sizes of soda for $1 plus tax. Totals out to $1.12. This afternoon when I plunked down my dollar bill, dime and two pennies the cashier said “$1.44 please”.
    Huh? What?
    Overnight the price went up from $1 to $1.29 plus tax. Yikes!
    I guess I should be grateful that I have been able to look out the window of McDonald’s and watch the cost of a gallon Regular Unleaded at the Kwik E Mart next door drop by $2.00/gal from $5+ to $3+ since June.
    Fortunately the Senior Coffee is still 88¢ tax included.
    I suspect that tomorrow morning the mud will suddenly taste about 42¢ better than the soda.

  74. Kathy says:

    On the recent topic of Biden taking advice from historians, I just stumbled on this interview with Mike Duncan (I haven’t seen it).

    On the key points at the link, there’s this: “Mike had a great idea for how historians can be more empirical when making claims about the lessons of history for modern politics: Historians, he says, should partner with political scientists on interdisciplinary projects.”

  75. DK says:

    @Michael Cain: Ha. What a nice story.