Tuesday’s Forum

Regular Open Forum for non-election off-sounding.

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. CSK says:

    This is excellent. Tom Nichols on how Trump, Musk, and Ye are fueled by resentment, and so are their fans.


  2. Mu Yixiao says:

    The winner of the $1.9B Powerball is…..


    The drawing didn’t take place because of “security concerns”. That’s obviously just a cover story to hide the fact that the drawing was stolen! The deep state is keeping your money. People are saying that there’s been ping-pong ball stuffing. I’m just saying!

  3. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @CSK: Yes, the angry resentful voters who only want those elitist libtards put in their place, which just happens to be living mutely under a bridge without even a coat hanger on which to grill their sparrow for dinner.

    Not trump, not thiel, not musk… No not those salt of the earth pulling themselves up by their bootstraps stalwarts.

  4. Jim Brown 32 says:

    Better catchphrase [than MAGA] for the soon to be GOP house:

    Banana Republicans

    From an NLP perspective the prefix of “Mag” has mostly positive subconscious conotations


    Im sure Trump didn’t design MAGA–‘but he does have consultants that give him base material that he ops tests at his rallies.

    Words matter

  5. Jax says:

    Question for anybody familiar with WordPress….when I upload pictures, the caption is always the word default unless I manually delete it or add my own caption. I spent all day yesterday deleting it off a bunch of pictures, had it all cleaned up, and when I went to Preview the post, all the “defaults” were back.

    Where do I turn that off?! I’ve looked everywhere in the settings and I’m becoming quite frustrated. 😛

  6. CSK says:

    @Jim Brown 32:

    You’re right. Trump didn’t create MAGA. He stole it from Reagan.

  7. Kathy says:

    Fans of Severance may want to check out a sixth season ep of Rick and Morty called “Night Family.”

    The premise is that Rick bought some alien tech that allows him to have a somnambulist “night person,” who does work or self-improvement while Rick sleeps. It gets pig-headed, violent, and gross form there. I found Rick’s attitude towards the “night people” rather interesting. Amazing who or what can qualify as other.

    IMO, the show has lost a lot of its impact. What drew me in was the overflowing imagination for Clarke level technology. That is, technology so advanced it may as well be magic. Proof you get used to everything. But once in a while they come up with intriguing story lines.

  8. CSK says:


    It’s amazing how many of Trump’s fans think of him as “just like them.” They call him “the blue collar billionaire.” And he despises them.

  9. Beth says:

    Omg. I got a Covid booster and a flu shot yesterday. At first it was fine. No problem. Went to bed last night and had the craziest dreams about fighting monsters and demons. Oh, and rescuing kittens while being some sort of prison consultant.

    Today I’m stuck in bed. My left arm is on fire and I want to barf myself to death. Oh and I just had a 70 lb pit bull lay on my face to try and help. Crap.

  10. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Jax: I’m a computer idiot. Whenever things go wrong for me I just yell out “HONEY????? I NEED HELP.” and everything gets fixed. She’s not here now so, I am no help at all.

  11. OzarkHillbilly says:

    via BJ commenter kalakal comes this little jewel:

    Libertarians/Republicans/Conservatives are like house cats: absolutely convinced of their fierce independence while utterly dependent on a system they don’t appreciate or understand.”

  12. Kylopod says:


    You’re right. Trump didn’t create MAGA. He stole it from Reagan.

    And “America First” from Lindbergh.

  13. Kylopod says:

    @Beth: The four Covid shots I’ve had were all followed by fever and chills, and pain in my arm where I got the shot. But the symptoms were more intense the first two times than the next two. (The first two were Moderna, the next two Pfizer.) The first booster, which I got last year, caused mild nausea. The most recent one, which I got together with a flu shot (which has never caused noticeable symptoms for me), was followed by a mild headache.

  14. Kathy says:


    The two of Pfizer I got produced almost no side effects, except for some pain in the arm. The second lasted two days or so.

    The two of AstraZeneca I got later, both on a Friday, produced some fever the night of the shot. Fever gets me to have vivid, semi-lucid dreams. these either go on for a while, or I have many related ones through the night. I wake up tired, no longer feverish, and in need of a nap.

    I got a flu shot last week, and it caused nothing. Still no bivalent Omicron boosters available here. I expect we may get them between next year and never.

  15. CSK says:

    Holy fucking shit.

    Last night at the rally for J.D. Vance, Trump suggested that drug dealers be shot by firing squad two hours or less after their arrests–no due process necessary–and that the bullet that killed them be sent to their families.

    As I said, holy fucking shit.

  16. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @CSK: But not a bill for the bullet?

  17. CSK says:


    I’m sure he’s kicking himself for not adding that.

    The crowd cheered.

  18. Jax says:

    I don’t even care what it looks like anymore. It’s taken me three days to get all the pictures uploaded in the right order with my terrible internet, every time I’d get a set started to upload, the internet would go out and I’d have to start over.

    Here’s a little distraction from the election stuff. 🙂


  19. Beth says:


    I’ve had 4 Moderna’s. I can’t remember if it was the second or third one where I felt like I had a broken arm for a month. I do know that each time I spent 24 hours feeling like burning garbage and having trouble thinking. I’m glad I’m self employed and can take the day off and be miserable in peace.

  20. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Jax: Sadly, my internet is not cooperating. I can not see pictures or view video. Glad you finally completed the project. Now… TIGHT LINES!

  21. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Nikki Haley told Republicans at a rally for Herschel Walker the Democrat in the Georgia US Senate race, the Rev Raphael Warnock, should be “deported”.
    Cornell William Brooks, a Harvard professor and pastor, wrote: “Were it not for civil rights laws Black folks died for, Nikki Haley’s family might not be in America.

    “Were it not for a HBCU [historically Black college and university] giving her father his first job in the US, Haley wouldn’t be in a position to insult Georgia’s first Black senator. Warnock’s history makes her story possible.”

    There is no bottom to the GOP barrel.

  22. CSK says:


    Warnock was born in Savannah. He can’t be deported. She of all people should know that. Or did she figure that because she was talking to Walker supporters, they’d be too dumb to know that?

  23. Jax says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I hear ya on the internet. I’ve been going round and round with my ISP, they’re insisting it’s my router that’s the issue, but my Mom lives 500 ft away from me and she’s using THEIR equipment, with the same problems. Saturday night I got in a yelling match with one of their technicians about it, so yesterday I called a different company to get signed up with them. Fuck ’em.

  24. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @CSK: She knows that (i looked to see iirc and yes, she was born in SC) but this is the direction the GOP is going: Only they get to define who is a “real” American and anybody who doesn’t fit their rather fluid definition, should be deported.

    There are many in the GOP that I would like to have deported, but I fear nobody would take them, not even Russia.

  25. CSK says:


    I gave this some consideration, and I’ve concluded that Trump may have stolen this slogan unwittingly, because I’m not sure he knows who Lindbergh is.

  26. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Jax: We have Hughes Satellite. I’m generally happy with them. We are signed up for some MBs of data every month. My wife recently signed up for some streaming services and I suspect that the problem is we went over our allotment, so now we get a slowdown in service. She (and I) thought she had it fixed the other night, but it’s still buggy.

    At least I can still read the news and visit OTB.

  27. just nutha says:

    @CSK: Oh, they know it well enough. It’s just part of the stuff you have to say to get recognized as assimilated when you’re col[racial epithet, deleted]. If she gone run for prez, she gotta pay her dues.

  28. OzarkHillbilly says:
  29. Skookum says:

    In process of moving from Twitter/Tweets to Mastodon/Toots. Different vibe, and I like it.

    1. Etiquette is important.
    2. Open source; business model does not depend on mining user data
    3. Longer posts and attachments.
    4. Many of the people I follow are migrating from Twitter.
    5. Already had a lovely exchange about making fruitcake.

  30. Kylopod says:


    I gave this some consideration, and I’ve concluded that Trump may have stolen this slogan unwittingly, because I’m not sure he knows who Lindbergh is.

    He may or may not; that isn’t the point. For that matter, while I’m sure he knows who Ronald Reagan is, it’s far from certain he lifted the MAGA phrase (which was actually “Let’s Make America Great Again”) directly from him. Both phrases have long histories of being used in various contexts, and Reagan and Lindbergh are simply among the more prominent examples of their uses before Trump.

    On that subject, Philip Roth’s 2004 novel The Plot Against America, about Lindbergh becoming president in the 1940s, is interesting because of the parallels to the Trump presidency. Roth, who lived till 2018, disputed the comparison on the grounds that Lindbergh was a legitimately accomplished person, so his rise to the presidency wouldn’t have been as bizarre as Trump’s. Still, I saw an interview with the two showrunners to the 2020 adaptation, and they stated outright that they intended the show as a warning against reelecting Trump.

  31. CSK says:

    @just nutha:
    Haley says she won’t run for prez if Trump does.

    The saddest thing was Eric Trump telling the crowd that “we love you” and that “we’re 100 percent behind you.” And the suckers believe it.

  32. grumpy realist says:

    Interesting article on the possibility of academics to leave Twitter.

    How Elon Musk plans to make money off Twitter after it turns into the standard cesspool all “free speech with no moderation!” places turn into is beyond me. There aren’t that many people who are looking for the service of being screeched at with epithets by immature trolls for the low cost of $8/month.

  33. grumpy realist says:

    Here’s another analysis of Musk’s latest moves.

    (I’ve been having a running argument with a friend about Elon Musk’s intelligence. I think this just adds to my claim that Musk has smarts in only certain very narrow areas. And not in business.)

  34. Sleeping Dog says:

    @grumpy realist:

    Mastodon would be a great location for the scientific community.

    There was an article up yesterday that Musk is considering taking twitter behind a paywall. While that seems counter intuitive and a move away from the concept of twitter as a town square, it could simplify the content moderation problem, the users community would be far more serious about the site and fewer users means lower data costs

  35. Scott says:

    @Sleeping Dog: From public town square to gated community. How very Republican like. And then they can rail against the HOA that they bought into.

  36. Kathy says:

    @grumpy realist:

    What I wonder is how running Twitter, even into the ground, aids St. Elon in sending his rockets to Mars carrying people and himself.

    I’m guessing it’s all tied up with digging tunnels and posing with flamethrowers. you know, some thirteenth dimensional crap that probably wont’ work.

  37. Sleeping Dog says:


    But it would become a private hellscape and would spare the rest of us.

  38. Sleeping Dog says:


    It’s an example of ego over intellect, with a healthy dose of impulsiveness.

  39. just nutha says:

    @CSK: And by 2028, she’ll be a dried out husk of no value to humanity and unlikely to consider a run.

  40. CSK says:

    @just nutha:
    Well, she’ll be 56 then.

  41. just nutha says:

    @Sleeping Dog: It already is a private reserve/whatever to lots of people with only 206 million visitors per day out of a population of several billion.

  42. Kathy says:

    @just nutha:

    Assuming Benito wins in 2024*, do you think such a little, irrelevant thing as the Constitution will keep him from running for a third term in 2028, if he’s still alive**? Or that his supporters wouldn’t demand he be allowed to run again?

    *I’ve been mulling over how many sacrifices to Hera are needed to prevent this.
    ** And even if he dies in office. The Orange creature is that clingy.

  43. Kathy says:

    Speaking of the rich and stupid, Elizabeth Holmes was denied a new trial .

    The courts should now stop wasting time and proceed to sentencing.

  44. CSK says:

    Holmes is white, young, and blonde. I doubt he’ll get hard time. I’d like to be wrong about that.

  45. MarkedMan says:

    Last night over dinner my wife and son were pointing out all the inconsistencies between what Republicans say about free and fair elections and what they actually do. I pointed out that while their actions might be inconsistent with what they say they are perfectly consistent if their actual intention was to prevent minorities and liberals from voting. Which brings to mind the question: how long of a track record do we need before we accept what they are telling us with their actions, and give up on the farce of arguing with their words? As near as I can tell this has been going on for 90%+ of my entire life (see: Southern Strategy) and I’m old!

  46. Kathy says:


    I don’t think she’ll get the 20 years maximum sentence, but she probably will get a few years. She committed a crime against money, after all. That’s very serious.

    Her erstwhile paramour, Balwani, will likely get the maximum penalty. He’s an immigrant.

    Not that he doesn’t deserve it, but the discrepancy will rankle.

  47. Sleeping Dog says:
  48. Stormy Dragon says:


    They’ll come up with some gobbledy gook about how the first term didn’t count because reasons.

  49. Jim Brown 32 says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Warnock should own it and say Haley wants him to go back to Africa…

  50. Flat Earth Luddite says:

    Well, I don’t think JohnSF can blame the Torries or Boris for this:

    In a post on the McDonald’s UK Facebook page(opens in new tab), the fast-food giant revealed the chair, and I have to be frank: this is perhaps the ugliest gaming chair ever seen by human eyes. The race car-inspired main body is a ghastly yellow plastered with the word ‘McCrispy’ over and over, while the detachable head cushion bears the iconic golden arches of the McDonald’s logo.

    Naturally, this being a comfortable gaming chair designed to celebrate the arrival of a sub-par chicken burger – which McD’s describes as ‘game-changing’, a tenuous link if I’ve ever seen one – the ‘McCrispy Ultimate Gaming Chair’ comes with a few helpful (read: stupid) features.

    These include a fry holder, slots for pots of dip, a stain-proof finish to protect the material from greasy fingers, and a small hot box ‘to keep your McCrispy warm during game-play’.


  51. CSK says:

    It’s not five o’clock yet, and it’s dark.

  52. Sleeping Dog says:


    Just wait, in a month it will be dusk starting around 3:30PM. We should be in the Atlantic timezone.

  53. wr says:

    @Jim Brown 32: “Warnock should own it and say Haley wants him to go back to Africa…”

    I don’t think Warnock himself has said that, but certainly others have.

  54. CSK says:

    Trump says that if DeSantis runs in 2024, he’ll reveal the dirt he has on DeSantis.

  55. Kathy says:

    @Stormy Dragon:

    They may not even have to.

    Consider things like the emoluments clause in the constitution. If there is no federal law governing who can run when, and no state law preventing a two-term president from running a third time, Benito can just declare and run and drag on the inevitable lawsuits long enough to take part in the election.

    Sure, I can see blue states won’t have him on the ballot. So what? He’s going to win in California or New York? the problem would be in the handful of swing states like Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, etc.

    A bigger problem would be a Republiqan challenger edging El Cheeto off the ballot in some states. We could wind up with two GQP candidates against a Democratic one, perhaps with neither getting the required 270 EC votes.

    It would simplify things if Benito didn’t live to see 2028, or if he’s trounced in 2024 (either in the primaries or the general election).

  56. senyordave says:

    Arizona candidate Kari Lake tells reporter she will be the media’s ‘worst nightmare’ if elected.

    Until Trump I never wished misfortune or ill health on politicians. Now if I had a voodoo doll that worked there is an army of politicians that I would be using them on. How anyone could vote for a sorry excuse for a human is beyond me.

  57. Beth says:

    Here’s your moment of amusement for the day;

    Nothing makes me feel dumber than trying to help my 6 year old daughter with her first grade math.

    I have a law degree! America’s most erroneously prestigious degree. I can barely hang on with this nonsense. What the hell is an addend? What is this rocket voodoo they are learning?

  58. Kathy says:


    An addend is to a sum what a factor is to multiplication. I do recall learning this in school.

    Like in 2-1=1, 2 and 1 are the addends (yes, a subtraction is a sum with negative numbers). I forget what the result is called.

    In multiplication, 2*6=12, 2 and six are the factors and 12 is the product.

    Oh, I just remembered how we learned it. The teacher liked to say “the order of the addends does not affect the sum.” Also the corresponding, “the order of the factors does not affect the product.” I never understood why would anyone think differently (at least in arithmetic), or why she dais it so often.

  59. DrDaveT says:

    @Beth: I had Booster #3 and flu shot the same day, and I also regretted it. One day of body aches, mild fever, headache, skin sensitivity, and not being able to lift my left arm (booster). A second day of fatigue, with the left shoulder still quite tender to the touch. Fine after that.

    I guess that means my immune system was doing something. Yay.

  60. grumpy realists says:

    @Kathy: It doesn’t make too much sense that they’re pointing out that the order of the addends don’t make a difference unless they also gave an example where the order DOES make a difference. The easiest example I can think of is rotations. For example: (90 degrees rotation around x axis) followed by (90 degrees rotation around y axis) isn’t the same as doing the rotations in the opposite order.

    This is why Abelian group theory is so fun.

  61. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Beth: An addend is one of the pieces in an addition arithmetic problem. Why I remember this is beyond me considering I never ever had occasion to need to know this after the first and only time I heard the term used in the second grade.

    But it gets better; subtraction has two parts (subtractite and subtractazoid, I think) because you have to label the larger and smaller parts correctly (until you get to negative differences, that is) and there are still multiplicand, multiplier and product, and the ever-popular dividend, divisor and quotient. Sums only have addends, IIRC (which I probably don’t see Par. 1).

  62. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Kathy: “(yes, a subtraction is a sum with negative numbers)”

    Not until I got to 3 semester algebra–paired with trigonometry as I recall. At that point, it became important to realize that subtraction, as such, doesn’t actually exist except as an artificial construct for arithmetic. (Which we weren’t doing anymore, we were doing mathematics now.)

  63. Gustopher says:


    What the hell is an addend? What is this rocket voodoo they are learning?

    Arithmetic Taxonomy, of course.

    I just don’t know why addition begins with addends. Seems like the end of addition would be the sum.

  64. Beth says:


    I guess that means my immune system was doing something. Yay.

    This is the only upside to my present condition.

    @grumpy realists:
    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    I’m surrounded by terrifying geniuses. I seriously thought “addend” was something they made up for new math.

    In my slight defense, my grade school labeled me “learning disabled” and functionally wrote me off. By high school I made it to the cream of the crop of “idiot math”. That was what the teacher called Algebra 2 for seniors. There were 12 of us who made it through to that. I’m also just not wired for
    Math. I can’t hold numbers in my head for shit. I ended up in law school partly because I couldn’t handle the math for anything computer related. I also bombed the logic games part of the LSAT. I was saved by reading comprehension and the ability to make wild logic leaps work.

    @grumpy realists:

    “Abelian group theory” sounds like a terrible prog rock band.

  65. Flat Earth Luddite says:


    Beth, don’t feel bad. My weak math-fu apparently goes back generations, to when the great-great (to the 20th, IIRC) discovered that their neighbors could actually recognize that they were missing sheep from their flocks.*

    *Full disclosure, apparently my ancestors were encouraged to immigrate/flee their country of origin due to this, as well as an inability to remember the correct order of “Loot, Pillage, and then Burn.

  66. Monala says:

    @Skookum: I’m already frustrated with Mastodon. I downloaded the app and signed up, but it won’t let me log into the app. It tells me my username and password are incorrect. However, if I sign in with the link they gave me when they asked me to verify my email address, the same username and password work. But I can’t do anything or visit anywhere on Mastodon other than my profile from that link. So I have no idea what I’m supposed to do.

  67. Flat Earth Luddite says:

    @grumpy realists:

    “Abelian group theory” sounds like a terrible prog rock band.

    Hey, they’re not terrible, they’re awesome! Especially their cover of “White Punks on Dope.”

  68. Kathy says:


    In my slight defense, my grade school labeled me “learning disabled” and functionally wrote me off.

    I tended to get bored in class and got easily distracted. I wound up in what was called “special education” for half a semester.

    I’ve never done well in math. I mostly understand the concepts, but that doesn’t help one bit in solving math problems. Same thing in physics and chemistry.

  69. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    Hey!!!! Don’t be knocking White Punks on Dope!!! Though the version they did opening for Bowie on the Serious Moonlight tour was much better than this one.

  70. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Beth: @Kathy: I did okay at math and arithmetic both. My biggest problem from algebra on was that I didn’t care about learning to DO the computations. Seeing them and moving on was the extent of my interest.

    I understood myself better after reading in some whirled history book that the Greeks were interested in knowing mostly for the sake of knowing. The examples the book gave were that they discovered trigonometry and figured out that it could be used for navigation but didn’t make maps and designed the water-lifting screw but didn’t build pumps for wells. That’s me to a “T.”

  71. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: And I’m grateful for having been born when I was. Had I been born 30 or 40 years later, I’d have been stuffed so full of Ritalin that it would be oozing from my eye sockets as I write this.

  72. Jax says:

    My Dad, a Trump Republican, is currently pissed because…..they required Voter ID when he went to vote.

    I have a cognitive dissonance headache.

    Currently watching Magic Mike to get my mood up. 😛 😛

  73. grumpy realist says:

    @Beth: Hence the mathematical joke: What’s purple and commutes? Answer: An Abelian grape.

    (All members of an Abelian group commute with each other (A x B == B x A). That’s why they’re called Abelian. So the group of non-negative integers under addition or multiplication is an Abelian group.)

  74. Beth says:

    @grumpy realist:

    Um. I think I get it?