Two Weeks before Election Day 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:

    TRUMP ON THE ATTACK: With 15 days until votes are counted and about 55,000 new COVID cases daily, Pres. Trump is attacking Dr. Fauci, calling him a “disaster” and doctors “idiots,” and warning Joe Biden would listen to them if he wins.

    No matter what, we are stuck with this blithering idiotic asshole until January 20. WASF.

  2. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Dr. Ali Nouri

    Why have some countries, particularly in East Asia, crushed the curve while US and Europe lose control over the pandemic?
    @WHO : because they detect and isolate the infected, track down their contacts, place those contacts in quarantine, and break the chain of transmission

    Take a look at Vietnam

    : as @findingsen writes, once a case (F0) is identified, all contacts (F1s) in prior week or so are identified and quarantined for 14 days. There’s more: F2s (contacts of F1s) are also identified & asked to self-isolate for 2 weeks.

    Ability to break chain of transmission, combined w/clear & trustworthy public health communication are among major reasons why Vietnam, a country of ~100 Million, has had just 35 deaths. As winter approaches, its critical for us to learn these lessons and put them into practice

  3. Bill says:
  4. Bill says:
  5. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Rex Chapman
    Horse racing

    Joe Biden is so clean the GOP is attacking his son, Hunter.

    Mind you, Hunter is a son who has lost a mother, a sister, and a brother already in his young life.

    It’s despicable what the republicans are doing right now. Embarrassing.

    Vote. Please vote. #vote

  6. drj says:

    In what is at best a partial Democratic victory, four Republican Justices on the Supreme Court pissed all over states’ rights (and good governance) to advance Republican electoral goals.

    But once Amy Coney Barrett is confirmed, the issue may be revisited and a bunch of Pennsylvania ballots will likely get tossed after all.

    In other words, in the absence of a Biden landslide, we are quite likely to get a Bush v. Gore II.

    Oh, and this follows the preposterous 5CA ruling that Texas can now reject ballots over “mismatched signatures” without notifying the voter until after the election.

    But it’s all good, because if there’s no voting, 100% of voter fraud will be eliminated!

    The current makeup of the courts is a direct threat to democracy.

  7. Scott says:

    I found this interesting yesterday.

    As Local News Dies, a Pay-for-Play Network Rises in Its Place

    A nationwide operation of 1,300 local sites publishes coverage that is ordered up by Republican groups and corporate P.R. firms

    The sites appear as ordinary local-news outlets, with names like Des Moines Sun, Ann Arbor Times and Empire State Today. They employ simple layouts and articles about local politics, community happenings and sometimes national issues, much like any local newspaper.

    But behind the scenes, many of the stories are directed by political groups and corporate P.R. firms to promote a Republican candidate or a company, or to smear their rivals.

    If there is ever a reason to tax the crap out of the wealthy it is this.

  8. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Woman in her 30s dies of COVID-19 aboard airplane

    Although the incident occurred three months ago, the Texas county wasn’t alerted that COVID-19 was the cause of death until a few days ago, Judge Clay Jenkins said Sunday.

  9. Teve says:


    Twitter has been throttling my reach and I’m getting 1/3 the amount of RTs I would normally get. Instagram is doing the same & worse for the last few days.

    I guess they don’t want the truth about the Biden crime family out there and they will cover for them at all costs.


    Or, you’re a tendentious douche with a constant stream of furious whining and people generally dislike you?

  10. Jen says:

    @Scott: As a PR person, I’ve been watching that issue unfold over the past couple of years. It’s insidious and highly problematic.

    The biggest problem is the purchase of legitimate local news sources, and then dumping this garbage pay-to-play content in them. That’s because unless you watch it closely, PR people continue to pitch these sources as legitimate, which gives them a whiff of respectability when they run “normal” or standard content.

  11. Teve says:


    The Justice Department will file an antitrust lawsuit against Google today, alleging the company engaged in anticompetitive conduct to preserve monopolies in search and search-advertising that form the cornerstones of its vast conglomerate.

  12. CSK says:

    I’ll take “tendentious douche” for a thousand, Alex.

  13. Teve says:


    Fox guest Tony Katz mocks Joe Biden for his stutter: “All you’ll hear is a stuttering Vice President Joe Biden? Haven’t we heard enough stuttering Vice President Joe Biden? Is this really the imagery the Democratic Party wants to put out there?”

    Stupid, values, you know the drill.

  14. Kylopod says:

    @Teve: Biden’s response: “Why don’t you all f- f- f- f- ffffade away!”

  15. Teve says:


    % of US adults (by main source of political news) who say “voter fraud has been a major problem when it comes to voting by mail in US presidential elections”

    Fox News: 52%
    CBS: 20%
    ABC: 17%
    CNN: 16%
    NBC: 14%
    MSNBC: 5%
    NPR: 3%
    The New York Times: 3%

  16. Mister Bluster says:

    Today’s History Quiz
    What happened October 20, 1973?
    1) Saturday Night Fever
    69) Saturday Night Live
    501) Saturday Night Massacre

    You Are a Winner!

    Saturday Night Massacre refers to a series of events that took place in the United States on the evening of Saturday, October 20, 1973, during the Watergate scandal. U.S. President Richard Nixon ordered Attorney General Elliot Richardson to fire Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox; Richardson refused and resigned effective immediately. Nixon then ordered Deputy Attorney General William Ruckelshaus to fire Cox; Ruckelshaus refused, and also resigned. Nixon then ordered the third-most-senior official at the Justice Department, Solicitor General Robert Bork, to fire Cox. Bork carried out the dismissal as Nixon asked. Bork claimed that he intended to resign afterward, but was persuaded by Richardson and Ruckelshaus to stay on for the good of the Justice Department.

  17. Teve says:


    It will be a glorious day when presidential campaigns need a vote in Los Angeles as much as one in Scranton, and when the entire nation doesn’t hinge on minor electoral court cases in a single state

  18. Mikey says:

    A good piece at the Above the Law blog that lays out how utterly inane and stupid the whole Hunter Biden laptop story is and also points out a bit of a problem for Giuliani if he has actually held on to a hard drive full of kiddie porn for months.

    Did Rudy Giuliani Just Cop To Possessing Child Pornography?

    Let’s play along here for a minute and pretend that everything we’re hearing from the New York Post and Rudy Giuliani about Vice President Biden and his son Hunter is 100 percent truthful and not an obvious Russian interference op embraced by a demented grifter and his craven enablers. Just for the sake of argument.


    We just have one question.

    What the hell was Rudy Giuliani doing with child pornography? Mere possession of sexually exploitative images of children is a crime, and the law imposes an affirmative obligation on anyone who comes across child pornography, even accidentally, to alert law enforcement immediately. And yet the former mayor and federal prosecutor claims to have had a copy of Biden’s hard drive in his possession for weeks now, long enough to shop the story to Fox and the NY Post.

    “I sleep with it at night,” he told The Daily Beast.

    So when was he going to get rid of this contraband? For that matter, when were Steve Bannon and Robert Costello going to get around to fulfilling their legal obligation to report this crime? Is the blind computer repairman going to be charged with distribution of child pornography because he made multiple copies of “Hunter Biden’s” hard drive and passed them on to third parties?

    Let’s take a wild shot in the dark that no one reported coming into possession of child pornography because it did not exist. There was no kiddie porn, and probably no laptop.

    There’s just a steaming pile of bullshit, and no one should swallow any of it.

  19. Teve says:


    NEW: An Ohio school has been assigning kids PragerU videos for class. The site has videos like ‘the left ruins everything’ & ‘playing the black card’

    Turns out, PragerU is amid a new push to get into K12 schools. They say ‘so many’ teachers have signed up

  20. Michael Cain says:

    @Teve: The first step in any antitrust case is to define the market which has been monopolized. I’m waiting to hear the government’s arguments that search of the world wide web, done at no charge to the user, is a “market”.

  21. Teve says:

    @Michael Cain: obviously the market would be between Google as the seller of advertising inventory and the firms buying the ad inventory.

  22. JohnSF says:

    The laptop hanging around for months; and the basic story out since last December.
    An “October Surprise” that completely misses the point of the whole “surprise” thing.

    This bunch make the Watergate burglars look like the team from Mission Impossible.

  23. Mu Yixiao says:


    It’s even more insidious than that.

    I publish a very small online-only newspaper (I have 3 regular columnists and publish an average of 5-7 stories per week). I’ve signed up to get press releases from all the local governments and LEOs (Gov. Evers must be getting writer’s cramp this week).

    Somewhere along the line my contact info got shared and now I get “letters to the editor” and “guest columns” pushing political agendas. My circulation is about 1000 readers, and I only report on events in the local area. These “contributions” are about state-level things, written (supposedly) by people from hundreds of miles away.

    With small-town newspapers desperate for content, I can see these being published without much thought. After all… they’re from “concerned citizens”.

    (and now I think I’ve exceeded my quota of scare quotes for the week).

  24. Teve says:


    “malevolence tempered by incompetence.” -Benjamin Wittes

  25. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Fred Wellman

    I spent the weekend diving into the IRS Form 990’s for the Tommy Tuberville Foundation after reading how so little of the money went to the mission of supporting veterans. I’ve been a veterans advocate for 10 yrs and seen a lot of these. Strap in for a long thread!

  26. Jen says:

    @Mu Yixiao: Yes. What happened there is your information got added to a media outreach database. When the information is added, it’s tagged geographically, along with adding some other details that can be sorted by a database (so, circulation, readership if those numbers are available, whether or not you take advertising, etc.).

    Because the media space is so fragmented, and it’s such a PITA to keep on top of making sure that reporter info is accurate, PR firms pay big bucks to subscribe to what are commonly called reporter or media lists. The “big dog” in this space is Cision, but there are others.

    When someone wants to advance an issue, they go into the database and plug in parameters (give me all of the media outlets in WI, IL, MI, and IA that have a readership greater than X, but no larger than Y). That spits out a list of email addresses and outlets.

  27. JohnSF says:

    The Swedes are reacting to Russia rather significantly:
    Sweden To Increase Defense Spending By 40% Amid Russia Fears
    Overall increase is even more: “total increase from 2014 to 2025 could reach as high as 85%”

  28. Teve says:

    Before I had seen much of the Trump kids I saw Saturday Night Live and Seth Meyers making fun of Eric as being borderline retarded, and I thought that’s not fair, I haven’t seen anything to indicate that Eric is especially stupid.

    I was Rong. I’ve seen several examples lately.

    Eric just re-tweeted a photo of Ice Cube and 50 Cent sitting courtside at a game wearing Trump hats, and Eric says “Two great, courageous Americans!” and it is the fakest looking Photoshop you have ever seen.

  29. Teve says:
  30. Jen says:

    Currently on Twitter, the absolute @sshole Teve mentioned above who is mocking Biden for having a stutter, and an equally deplorable Newsmax host who is saying that the stutter is an invented thing to garner sympathy (which, as noted by others, would be an extremely long game for Biden as he’s made it known for literally decades).

    These are the WORST people. Seriously awful.

  31. Mu Yixiao says:

    Seen elsewhere:

    The scene: the White House, shortly before noon on the 20th of January, 2021:

    CHEETOLINI: “…the Aristocrats!”.

  32. Teve says:

    I Was Reagan’s Solicitor General. Here’s What Biden Should Do With the Court.

    Joe Biden should be open to enlarging the number of justices. But first, he should see if the conservative majority overplays its hand.

    By Charles Fried

    Joe Biden got it exactly right in expressing an ambivalent openness to pushing for legislation — entirely constitutional — enlarging the number of Supreme Court justices, if Democrats win the presidency and the Senate in November.

    Such a move would make blazingly clear what some of us hope is not quite true: that the court is a partisan political institution, a conception that would invite further rounds of enlargement in a different political moment.

    But to paraphrase Churchill, such a maneuver is a bad idea, except for all the alternatives. Here the alternatives boil down to just one: a predictable, reactionary majority on the Supreme Court for perhaps as long as another generation.

    I write reactionary, not conservative, because true conservative judges like John Marshall Harlan are incrementalists, not averse to change, respectful of precedent and unlikely to come into the grips of radical fantasies like eliminating or remaking the modern regulatory-administrative state.

    But with the seemingly inevitable rise of Amy Coney Barrett to the court, this impending six- person majority is poised to take a constitutional wrecking ball to generations of Supreme Court doctrine — and not just in matters of reproductive choice.


  33. Kathy says:

    The nightmare scenario is a Trump reelection, naturally. But what I’m worried about is a Biden win where the GOP keeps the Senate 51-49 (or worse).

    We’d then have 4 years where absolutely nothing could get done.

  34. Teve says:

    Yahoo/YouGov poll showing that 40% of Republicans think QAnon is true or somewhat true.

  35. de stijl says:


    If anything, there is a significant undercount.

  36. de stijl says:


    Confirmation bias is a helluva drug.

  37. DrDaveT says:


    We’d then have 4 years where absolutely nothing could get done.

    I’m guessing that this is Mitch McConnell’s preferred outcome. He doesn’t need Trump to win; the Court is already packed. He doesn’t want to be responsible for fixing what’s obviously broken; that makes the incompetence of the GOP all too obvious. What he wants is a veto over sanity, so that he can relive the Obama years of blaming the Democrats for failing to fix everything while simultaneously guaranteeing that nothing gets fixed.

  38. Teve says:

    @de stijl: yeah the excess deaths above expectations in the US this year is ~300k.

  39. Teve says:

    The shitty Newsmax guy who says Biden is lying about having a stutter used to host Good Day New York, and Joel McHale on my beloved The Soup would mock him mercilessly.

  40. Sleeping Dog says:


    Among Biden’s early actions, should be awarding Fauci the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

  41. Kathy says:

    @Sleeping Dog:

    I can think of less deserving people who’ve got it.

    But if you really want to cause a trumpian epic meltdown, then just award Biden the Nobel Peace Prize.

  42. The action against Google looks like a political stunt to me. There were 11 states that joined the lawsuit. Those states are:


    That list looks pretty partisan to me.

    I don’t know, maybe this is a dumb lawsuit meant to make the Biden administration look corrupt when it drops it?

  43. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Teve: But first, he should see if the conservative majority overplays its hand.

    Yeah. Wait until the senate is in GOP hands again. Fuck that shit. You grab the gun, you load it and then you point it at the GOP head and say, “You want to talk now? In good faith? Come to a binding agreement?” And then you pull the trigger anyway because these mf’ers can’t be trusted for even one second.

  44. Kathy says:

    @Jay L Gischer:

    Perhaps it is, but I favor reigning in the tech companies on general principle, in particular Google, Facebook, and Amazon. More than that, they should be regulated more, starting with what data they can collect, how they can use it, and what compensation they owe their users for providing their data (beyond the services offered “free”).

  45. Kathy says:


    I think I’ve a good analogy.

    Not too long ago a turboprop crashed in Taiwan shortly after takeoff. First the right engine failed during the initial climb. In their attempt to control the plane, one of the pilots mistakenly reduced power to the left engine, then cut power entirely.

    We can say the plane crashed because the pilot shut down the good engine. We cannot say the failure of the other engine had nothing to do with the crash. That first engine failure is the ultimate cause, as nothing bad would have happened had it not failed.

    BTW, as incredible as it seems that a pilot would shut down the last good engine, it has happened before. It’s not a common occurrence, however. Engine failures are rare, but given the large number of daily flights, they happen over a hundred times a year. Most are resolved without incident, past a diversion or a return to the departure airport.

  46. Gustopher says:

    @Sleeping Dog: No. Keep politics out of medicine.

  47. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Gustopher: Too late.

  48. Gustopher says:

    My ballot arrived yesterday, and I haven’t opened it yet, I’m just reaching over and petting it lovingly, which is admittedly very strange. I want to prolong that moment of feeling like I have some control in the direction of this country.

    Good ballot. Very good ballot.

  49. Sleeping Dog says:


    Recognizing Fauci isn’t mixing politics and medicine, but recognizing Fauci’s contribution to American public health, during the pandemic and through his entire career. Remember, Fauci first came to public notice in the 80’s and the public health campaign around HIV/Aids. The man is an exemplary civil servant, who has served his country with honor and professionalism.

  50. Sleeping Dog says:


    Mail it! 🙂

  51. Gustopher says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: It would further undermine trust in Fauci, when we need him. We need the reachable people on the right to take the pandemic seriously, just not having a President kneecapping Fauci’s public statements is probably the right approach.

    When Fauci retires, he should absolutely get the Presidential Medal of Freedom. He now regularly gets death threats because of Trump, and he still goes to work and does his job to try to protect all of us.

    But, until he retires, it would undermine the work he is paying such a price to complete.

    (He’s old, I assume he retires at some point after we have a vaccine and distribution…)

  52. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Sleeping Dog: My point was that whether we like it or not, whether we engage in the politicization of science or not, Republicans do, and that means if DEMs stand on the side of science, use science to inform their decisions and policies, than to a certain segment of the population,


    And we can do nothing about that. The people who can fix it are the ones who politicized it to begin with, and they have no interest in doing that. But what does one expect from a political party that thinks the answer to every problem is a bigger tax cut for the rich, that a cluster of 8 cells is a human being, and that a bigger better aircraft carrier is the best thing for taking out a terrorist cell. Oh yeah, white supremacists are very fine people too.

  53. Kingdaddy says:

    Am I a bad person for thinking that the phrase “pulling a Toobin” is really funny?

  54. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Gustopher: It would further undermine trust in Fauci, when we need him.

    See me @OzarkHillbilly:

    I repeat, it’s too late. If a DEM calls Fauci up to testify in congress and uses his statements to form policy, it will be condemned.

    I fully expect a bill to be proposed by some state leg somewhere saying H2O is discriminatory against the ignorant and water can henceforth only be referred to as water, and never never NEVER “agua”. And I’m only half kidding when I say that.

  55. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kingdaddy: Yes. Welcome to the Group W bench.

  56. Teve says:

    Televangelist Pat Robertson reported on “The 700 Club” today that he had been told by God that President Donald Trump will be reelected … and his reelection will bring about start of the End Times.

    Robertson said that “without question, Trump is going to win the election,” but it will result in widespread civil unrest, during which there will be at least two attempts to assassinate the president.

    While America is engulfed in chaos, Robertson predicted that Islamic nations will use it as an opportunity to attack Israel but will be wiped out by God, leading to “a remarkable time of peace.”

    Following several years of peace and global revival, the world will then experience the End Times’ “great tribulation” when an asteroid strikes the Earth.


  57. Mu Yixiao says:


    They all slid away from me on the Group W bench.

  58. Mu Yixiao says:


    From Al Jazeera:

    Trump’s campaign objected to the change, but said he would still take part.
    “President Trump is committed to debating Joe Biden regardless of last-minute rule changes from the biased commission in their latest attempt to provide advantage to their favoured candidate,” campaign manager Bill Stepien said.

    The commission is a non-partisan body.

    Trump later told reporters he would take part.

    “I will participate but it’s very unfair that they changed the topics and it’s very unfair again that we have an anchor who’s totally biased,” he claimed.

    So unfair. Somebody get him a comfort puppy.

  59. Kylopod says:


    Televangelist Pat Robertson reported on “The 700 Club” today that he had been told by God that President Donald Trump will be reelected

    Well that settles it, as God communicating through Robertson has never been wrong.

  60. Mikey says:

    @Mu Yixiao: There’s a lot to despise about Trump, but pretty close to the top of the list is the constant whining. I don’t think I have ever encountered a person who whines so frequently, and I have raised children through the “terrible twos.”

    I mean, seriously. Constant whining, constant whinging, constant complaining. It’s so tiresome.

  61. Teve says:

    @Kylopod: you know, the Bible says something about stoning false prophets to death…

  62. Teve says:


    everyday i get on this app and see people with display names like “lieutenant dick n balls” write more nuanced & informed opinions than actual senators

  63. Kingdaddy says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Damn. Stuck sitting next to the father rapists.

  64. Bob@Youngstown says:

    My personal experience (current) with absentee ballot:
    Mailed application for ballot Aug 5
    BOE processed application Sept 1
    BOE mailed ballot to me Oct 13 *
    I’m still waiting on Oct 20

    * On Ohio on-line ballot tracker, checked on October 8th to see if ballot had been mailed to me yet . The database reported it had been mailed on October 13 (five days in the future??)

  65. Kingdaddy says:

    Kyle Rittenhouse Deserves the Kind of Mercy My Son Did Not Receive

  66. Jen says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    Somebody get him a comfort puppy.

    Good heavens, no. He hates dogs, and dogs are awesome, no need to inflict that on one of those lovely creatures.

  67. CSK says:

    Well, I guess I shouldn’t buy any green bananas.

  68. inhumans99 says:

    I was waiting (hoping) for the type of post that Kevin Drum just put up to start popping up on the internet, remember when for a brief moment folks thought Obama was in danger at the ballot box, and a meme went around that showed Obama with captions underneath like chill the eff out I got this, well…Kevin Drum’s post is like that meme in that he is finally at a point where he is willing to put up a post telling folks who are teetering on a ledge worried about Biden’s chances to relax.

    Still, it is going to be a long two weeks with constant stories about Trump yelling to lock everyone up. For all of those that are worried about Trump and his authoritarian tendencies (which very much include myself), if an actual strong man said he wanted folks like Biden locked up you can bet your last dollar that as I type this out Biden would be paraded around the cameras in chains. Real strongmen say jump and everyone around them says how high?

    That all of the sycophants Trump has surrounded himself with are not acting on his wishes tells me everything I need to know about Trumps’ chances at re-election. He is now like a 2 year old throwing a tantrum that folks are trying to ignore (including his own caretakers) until he exhausts himself with his histrionic actions.

  69. CSK says:

    It must have killed Trump to award a medal to that Belgian Malinois last November, and having to pretend that he liked that beautiful beast.

    I love dogs. I hate Trump.

  70. MarkedMan says:

    @Kingdaddy: FWIW, for those not in the know, they may be really questioning your background right now… you no-good litterer!

  71. mattbernius says:

    The accessory component of Felony Murder laws are deeply problematic and typically applied in deeply racist ways.

  72. JohnSF says:

    Election new from the weekend some may have missed: Labour party led by Jacinda Ardern wins in New Zealand.

    Labour got 49% of the vote; opposition National (centrist conservative) took 26%; ACT-NZ (right libertarian/liberal) 8%; Greens 7.6%; Maori Party 1%

  73. Kathy says:


    It’s even worse when he whines about something that is under his control, or his ability to fix or address in some way. How many times has he complained that a cabinet Secretary, or their department, isn’t doing what he wants? He can direct them to do it, or fire the secretary in question. Instead he whines.

    Also when he lies about what he’s whining about, like the debate question topics. they were not changed. The commission refused his request they be changed.

    He does have a definition of “unfair” more suitable to a toddler (shocker): when things don’t go or happen the way he wants, regardless of reason. He should adopt a campaign slogan like “Do as I tell you and nobody gets hurt!!”

  74. JohnSF says:

    @Mu Yixiao:
    Comfort scorpion?

  75. Teve says:

    The right wing disinformation machine is preparing for Trump to lose.

    The article is about how QAnon is going global and what form it will take whether Trump wins or loses.

  76. Mister Bluster says:

    Rush Limbaugh says his lung cancer is terminal
    When he dies I may just have to make a donation to the Democratic Party in his memory.

  77. Mu Yixiao says:


    No no. You want something soft and cuddly, so Trump will sit in the corner, suck his thumb and take a nap like a good little boy.

    Perhaps a llama? As I understand it they really don’t spit that much.

  78. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Teve: Then it’s fortunate that we have real journalism outlets out there to keep us apprised of THE TRUTH[tm pending]. It’s clear that the lamestream media and the commie pinkos at NPR and NYT aren’t going to protect us.

  79. Jen says:

    Random US Senate question: since both the Martha McSally and Kelly Loeffler seats were filled by appointment, does that mean that their (potential) replacements would get sworn in right away, rather than waiting until January to take office?

  80. Teve says:


    The vexing thing about the senate’s massive over representation of rural white people is it’s given us “GOP can hold power despite hideously unpopular tax policy ideas” rather than “massive investment in arguably wasteful program to bring fast cheap broadband to rural America.”


    That is the crux. If the rural whites—without cultural, majoritarian numerical, or economic power—were using their political overleverage to demand a few more crumbs from the wealth of America, I would not be undown with that. It is the fact that they are morons easily grifted


    The funding mechanism for Obamaphones was originally developed to pander for the votes of rural telephone users. It made city dwellers pay for those costly wires out to the boondocks.

  81. Sleeping Dog says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    I understand that Slow Lorises are popular pets, being so adorable with their button noses and puppy dog eyes.

  82. Teve says:
  83. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Teve: One of the things that surprised me when I changed careers to move from warehousing to education was that teachers aren’t the leftists I grew up with anymore. For example, based on the reading that I’ve found on a bookshelf of a biology/forestry teacher for whom I’ve substituted many times, I would have to conclude that this teacher is an advocate for intelligent design and a climate change denier.

    I will, however, go on to note that there is also no evidence that I can see that the personal beliefs of the teacher cross over into curriculum decisions. This teacher teaches exactly as the chosen text for the district calls for and the students fulfill the goals of instruction as mandated by the state. The issue isn’t beliefs, it’s failure to compartmentalize. The number of evangelicals that I’ve known who hold the notion that “my classroom is my mission field” is, well, just about all of them. Most also find that it’s problematical to try to evangelize and teach in the same venue. I wish it were as hard when the “evangelization” is political, but it doesn’t seem to be.

  84. Sleeping Dog says:


    Yes, but remember the Loeffler seat will end up in a runoff and I’m not sure when that’s scheduled.

  85. Mu Yixiao says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    THE TRUTH[tm pending]

    Pedantic point: Trademarks (and copyrights) are never “pending”. Your brand becomes trademarked as soon as you put ™ after it. This allows you to claim basic protections.

    If you want full protections, you register your trademark. That’s the ®. When you’ve got that, you have full protection (though you need to defend your trademark in order to keep it).

  86. Teve says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    For example, based on the reading that I’ve found on a bookshelf of a biology/forestry teacher for whom I’ve substituted many times, I would have to conclude that this teacher is an advocate for intelligent design

    I don’t think that’s a very representative sample. When I was at NC State I knew a bunch of forestry guys and despite being Grade A rednecks they all knew global warming was legit because they could clearly see it in trees and plant zone shifts. There are a few biology teachers who are creationists, but more commonly you’ll find teachers who understand evolution but have to minimize it to keep idiot parents from jumping down their throats.

  87. CSK says:

    Well, I suppose if you’re convinced that Trump was sent by God to save us…

    What I wonder is if Garrison actually believes this crap, or if he’s just figured out a way to fleece the rubes.

  88. Teve says:
  89. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Gustopher: Fauci will be 80 on Christmas Eve this year. If he had any intentions of retiring, he’d have done it by now.

  90. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Kingdaddy: I dunno. I’m still trying to figure out how you accidentally expose yourself on Zoom.

  91. Teve says:
  92. Teve says:

    Soon after, during a brief tarmac Q&A, a reporter asked the president why he keeps accusing his opponent of being a criminal. Instead of answering in any meaningful way, Trump simply said, “He is a criminal. He’s a criminal…. Let me tell you something: Joe Biden is a criminal, and he’s been a criminal for a long time.”

    The Republican proceeded to tell a group of supporters at an Arizona rally that the former vice president is lucky that Bill Barr is the current attorney general, “because I know people that would have had him locked up five weeks ago.” It came on the heels of a Georgia rally in which similarly said, “Lock them up. You should lock them up. Lock up the Bidens.”

  93. JohnSF says:

    @Mu Yixiao:
    Scottish wildcat? They look like cute widdle puddy tat; they are in fact a furry Hannibal Lecter.

  94. CSK says:

    Melania Trump won’t be attending her hubby’s rally tonight in Pennsylvania; she’s still too ill with Covid-19 to do so. Is another rat deserting the sinking ship?

  95. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kingdaddy: What’dju git kid?

  96. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Jen: I have read that it is true in the case of McSally but most likely Loeffler is gonna end up in a january runoff with the next highest poller who will probably be Warnock.

  97. Mister Bluster says:

    @Teve:..Yeah that’s not blasphemous or anything

    I sure hope this is:

    Q: Why did Jesus walk on water?
    A: He didn’t know how to swim!

  98. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @JohnSF: Comfort Anaconda. It can give him a hug. That’s the ticket. Yeah.

  99. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: I’d send him a porcupine.

  100. inhumans99 says:


    I was trying to come up with a reason why Trump keeps saying that (and making him sound like like a straight up crazy dude) but in the back of his mind he figures it worked once, when he chanted Lock Her Up!, lots of folks at his rallies, and right wing sites enthusiastically agreed that Clinton should be arrested for Benghazi, but her emails, having the last name Clinton, etc., the point is that it worked, this time around lots of folks, even lots of Republicans, even folks like Barr himself are just left scratching their head and are confused why Trump keeps saying what he is saying,

    The poor dear is befuddled and a bit startled that his chants of lock him up are not having the same effect as they did when he said something similar in 2016. Now everyone is just looking at him with a bit of pity in their eyes because Trump really has become a hollow shell of the man he used to be.

    The GOP spent over 25 years trying to take down both Clintons and Trump just helped them finally achieve their goal. The GOP has not devoted many, if any resources at all in the past 25+ years to tearing down Biden and his family.

    The above is my long-winded way of saying that what worked for Clinton was never going to work for Biden, he applies a nickname to Clinton and it sticks, he chants lock her up and it sticks, none of that was going to work to tear down and redefine what the general public thinks of Biden, who is a career politician unlike Trump, and has lived out most of his life trying to provide for his constituents.

    So now we are at a point where Trump will just rant lock him up for the next two weeks as a lot of folks in his orbit shake their heads and just pity him a bit. Trump really is cracking up, after the election if Trump is no longer the President I think folks are going to drop any pretenses of liking the guy and maybe try to have him committed based on the very public loony tunes stuff he has uttered over the past few months (drinking bleach, lock him up, etc., etc., etc..).

    I only half kid when I say folks may try to have him committed, he really is having a very public breakdown and would be better served if he watched what he said between now and the election. If his team wanted to do him any favors they would stop the rallies, get him back in the White House, off of twitter, and just issue official memos from the Oval Office anytime Trump has something to say (memos that can be edited for content prior to their release of course).

  101. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Mister Bluster: I wonder who’ll get his time slot. I can’t imagine him “turning over the reins” to someone else or that such a move would even be viable. When I see that The 700 Club is on at the gym and see Pat Robertson still as the main attraction, I also wonder how quickly things will collapse when he finally shuffles off this mortal coil. Leading a personality cult is a tough job. The worst thing for either Rush or Pat would be to linger on for several months watching their respective empires dissolve.

    Paging Ozymandias. Ozymandias, please go to the white courtesy phone.

  102. Sleeping Dog says:


    I’m older than the writers father and have never willingly watched Fox News, only when trapped and someone else has the clicker. Of course my annual TV consumption is probably < 100 hr/yr. But I don't get it why they fall into that hole of spending the day watching Fox, except for the 2 hours of Rush. What's truly bizarre, is that the most aggrieved part of Fox News watchers are living pretty comfortable lives. None of the folks living in places like The Villages or similar retirement communities are poor and if they are scrimping, it's to pass money to the kids.

    When I do come across a senior who is barely getting by, they often are thankful for what they have and hope their God will take care of them when they can't take care of themselves.

  103. dazedandconfused says:

    No. Rats’ abandoning of sinking ships is an urban legend, they depart so they can spend more time with their families.

  104. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Sure. Okay. Porcupines are cute.

  105. CSK says:

    Of course. Silly me.

  106. Kathy says:


    I only half kid when I say folks may try to have him committed

    There’s a chance his brood may do just that to protect their inheritance, provided there is any money left.

  107. Sleeping Dog says:

    In the final stretch of 2016, some analysts were able to detect loud, clanging alarms ringing for Hillary Clinton beneath the surface that most of us could not. They had access to polling conducted at the congressional district level, which showed Donald Trump gaining ground big time in White working-class House districts.

    But most of us don’t have access to such data, which is often conducted by campaigns and party committees.

    David Wasserman, who analyzes House races for the Cook Political Report, has access to an enormous amount of this data. Wasserman has been tweeting that this granular polling is telling a different story this time, one in which Trump is not matching 2016 totals in White working-class House districts and falling further behind in districts heavy on college-educated Whites.

    Read the whole article, interesting.

  108. Teve says:

    Friend of a friend on Facebook is being harassed by a Trumper and posted one of the Trumper‘s comments to us so that we might suggest responses to him. Passing it along just for kicks:

    “1st of all nobody is dying anymore 2nd of all the only people that died were at the hands of the democratic governors for example the governor of New York placing virus infected people in old folks homes. He should be charged with murder and treason. Furthermore the CDC reduced the number of deaths strictly from the virus from 200000 to 9700. Stop perpetuating fear all the antics and anything you can imagine posting will not help you in getting Biden Elected. It will be a landslide victory for trump and thank God otherwise we would definitely be going down the road to communism and socialism”

    What do you even say to somebody this clueless? Rhetorical question. You don’t.

  109. Teve says:


    The GOP spent over 25 years trying to take down both Clintons and Trump just helped them finally achieve their goal. The GOP has not devoted many, if any resources at all in the past 25+ years to tearing down Biden and his family.

    Yeah, Biden’s been in the public eye for 50 years. With no indication whatsoever that he’s corrupt. So Don and DJTJ come along and yell Biden Crime Family! and everybody says fuck off.

  110. Teve says:

    @Sleeping Dog: you raise an interesting question, do you have to be predisposed to feeling sorry for yourself in order to get sucked into Fox News, or can Fox News turn a psychologically healthy person into a psycho nutbag?

  111. Kathy says:


    What do you even say to somebody this clueless? Rhetorical question. You don’t.

    I’m impressed they spelled New York right.

    You can call them after Trump loses the election and congratulate them on such a great landslide victory.

  112. Monala says:

    @CSK: Why is she, a presumably healthy, not obese woman much younger than her husband, still sick while he’s running around claiming to be Superman? I know Covid can sometimes take healthy younger people down, but I also wonder why she didn’t have access to the same experimental drugs he did.

  113. Monala says:

    @Sleeping Dog: I knew a senior who was exactly as you described, grateful to be alive, and still friendly and happy despite the travails of his age. He spent his days watching Turner Classic Movies and sports.

  114. Mu Yixiao says:

    Thank God someone is in charge.

    (it explains a lot)

  115. Mu Yixiao says:

    I don’t know where it is where the rest of y’all live, but around here Trump flags are more popular than lawn signs.

    Yesterday on the way home from work, I noticed that a flag was missing. Today it was replaced with a new one that had a slogan on it “No more…” I couldn’t read the rest.

    It’s a variation on this:

    Trump 2020: No More Bullshit

    The irony hurts so bad.

  116. Kathy says:


    I can think of two possibilities:

    1) Trophy wife did not get the Regeneron antibodies, making her recovery longer.

    2) Trump caught COVID-19 much earlier than assumed, and was farther along the path.

  117. JohnSF says:

    Will Sommer on twitter:

    QAnon figure Austin Steinbart, who goes by the alias “Baby Q” and has claimed to be the leader of QAnon visiting from the future via time travel, just filed to act as his own attorney in a federal felony case.

  118. Mu Yixiao says:

    Results from a survey conducted by the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany show that a high number of Millennials and Gen Z don’t have basic knowledge or understanding of what happened during the Holocaust.

    “The results are both shocking and saddening and they underscore why we must act now while Holocaust survivors are still with us to voice their stories.

    Data collected shows that a shocking 48 percent couldn’t name a single concentration camp, and 20 percent in New York, specifically, believed that Jews caused the Holocaust. Even more surprisingly, 63 percent didn’t know that six million people were killed by the end of WWII, and 36 percent believed that the number of Jewish murdered was only two million or less.

    From Campus Reform.

    (It’s a Trump-loving right-wing website filled with juvenile opinions, but there are nuggets of truth and interest if you’re willing to wade through the crap)

  119. MarkedMan says:

    @Mu Yixiao: @Kathy: Any takers for a bet that when Trump croaks we find out that his net worth is negative (if not before)? As I understand it his organization owes something like $1B and he is personally on the hook for something like $400M of that.

  120. @Kathy: In a very general way, I agree. Monopolies are bad, and that includes monopolies on online advertising.

    And this attitude exactly represents the wedge that certain parties (broadband companies, I’m looking at you) hope to drive between Google (whose founders lean strongly D) and Democrats in general.

    I think it highly significant that there are no Democratic AGs who signed on to this lawsuit, even though it isn’t hard to find some that are concerned. In particular, I find it quite interesting that the WA AG isn’t involved – WA being home to Microsoft, which surely has an axe to grind about Google.

    In addition, one wonders why Facebook isn’t treated in a similar way. Facebook arguably serves up MORE advertising than Google, but we can’t get figures for it, because it’s all internal, and a lot of it doesn’t really look like “advertising”.

    Of all the big internet players, Google seems to be the one that is the most transparent, and the most trying to do things that are good for the users as well as for itself – the classic Adam Smith win-win thing. And funnily enough, it is the only one named in this anti-trust lawsuit that somehow is filed two weeks before the presidential election in which it looks pretty strongly like the current administration will lose. If they had a good case, they would have been on it long ago. They would have got blue states such as WA, IL, MA, or maybe even NY to sign on. I’m guessing this is a garbage hail mary play.

    I do not in the slightest trust this lawsuit to carry justice forward. I think it’s meant to obscure and confuse the issue, not advance any cause of justice or fairness.

    Full disclosure: I once worked for Google. I own Google stock.

  121. Mu Yixiao says:

    Headline from Campus Reform:

    “Student newspaper publishes instructions on how to make a molotov cocktail”

    College students need instructions for that?!

    Shit… In high school were making fragmentation grenades out of CO2 canisters and black powder, and “firebomb drones” out of model airplanes stuffed with gas-soaked paper towels. Of course, back in those days you could buy dynamite wick, black powder, and blasting caps in the gun shop at the back of the drug store. Ah… the good ol’ days. 😀

    (I’m astounded that we made it to graduation with all our organs and appendages intact).

  122. Teve says:

    @Kathy: She could have genetics that make her more susceptible. She could have gotten a bigger Infectious Dose, say, from her Personal Trainer. 😀

  123. Teve says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    Tuesday, October 20, 2020 at 17:19
    Results from a survey conducted by the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany show that a high number of Millennials and Gen Z don’t have basic knowledge or understanding of what happened during the Holocaust.

    I don’t think that’s terribly surprising. I’m Gen X, and I can barely tell you a sentence or two about what happened in World War I.

  124. gVOR08 says:

    Over at Balloon Juice Adam Silverman speculates knowledgeably about what Giuliani has. He suspects Russian intelligence hacked Hunter Biden’s cell phone. Apparently there’s software that allows them to hack pretty much anyone’s phone. With the phone data they could have added material and doctored material to build up a fake, but credible, laptop hard drive. Almost all the material would be genuine, making it hard to identify and prove any fakery. Then they seem to have failed to find a credible story for it falling into Giuliani’s hands. I’d wonder if an original plan using Ukrainians fell apart. Apparently Giuliani has hinted he has more and Silverman thinks he may have a doctored video.

    And this leads me to concerns about any alleged video that Rudy plans to leak out. Deep fake technology has increased by leaps and bounds over the past four years. Either modifying existing video that Hunter Biden might have had on his smartphone or modifying video of someone else to look like Hunter Biden can be done with better results in 2020 than they could have been done in 2016. Would a deep fake hold up to proper analysis? Probably not, but it wouldn’t have to.

  125. Mu Yixiao says:


    WWI doesn’t get the publicity that WWII does.

  126. Teve says:

    @Jay L Gischer: Facebook had revenues of $70B in 2019, Google had $162B.

  127. Teve says:

    @Mu Yixiao: True, but Gen Z is 10-25 years old. Most of them aren’t watching Saving Private Ryan or Ken Burns shows on PBS yet.

  128. JohnSF says:

    An interesting article in The New York Times on the media strategies of the campaigns.

    Actually, Biden media strategy not far away from what I expected, surprisingly enough.

    Very big in Pennsylvania; pretty big in the other key Dem targets upper MidWest, Nevada, Arizona; rather more on Florida than I’d have guessed , but if Team Biden data shows it winnable, may as well go big there.
    Then enough to at least tease the opposition in and maybe score upsets in Georgia, Ohio, Iowa, Texas(!), New Hampshire.
    Plus the winnable bits of the split electors: Nebraska and Maine.

    Trump spending $7mil on “virus”, $5mil on “health care”.
    Well, that’s $12 large down the drain then. LOL.

    And $1mil in DC! Look, I’m a dumb Brit and even I know that’s a total waste of money.

    While Biden is attacking hard on virus and character; also interestingly a $14mil spend characterized as “Obama”. Makes sense; contrast and reset.

  129. flat earth luddite says:


    Election new from the weekend some may have missed: Labour party led by Jacinda Ardern wins in New Zealand.
    Labour got 49% of the vote; opposition National (centrist conservative) took 26%; ACT-NZ (right libertarian/liberal) 8%; Greens 7.6%; Maori Party 1%

    The Kiwis’ get all the cool parties, and we’re stuck with Demorants and Repugnants

    (and a big h/t to Cracker to pointing this out to me, as I hadn’t logged in yet – slacking in the sunshine!)

  130. Mu Yixiao says:


    Now that I’m at home, I can reply to something in your earlier comment:

    Mere possession of sexually exploitative images of children is a crime, and the law imposes an affirmative obligation on anyone who comes across child pornography, even accidentally, to alert law enforcement immediately.

    That’s a road to Hell.

    A good friend of mine found that his e-mail had been hacked and was being used to send child porn. He immediately called the police and handed over the computer. The police thanked him, and confirmed that it was a hack–he wasn’t guilty of anything and took the correct action in reporting it.

    Acting against the recommendations of the police, the local DA pressed charges of possession. 6 months and $50k later the DA upped the ante and threatened to escalate to a federal felony unless my friend plead guilty. He’d lost his house, his wife, and his ability to deal with life on a daily basis. He took the deal.

    Showing a colleague a “non-work-related” web page (it was a post on FB, I think), got him thrown in jail for violating the terms of his plea. He’s physically disabled and was sitting in a state prison for a year. Now he’s in his mid 50’s, living with his parents because he can’t get a job. He’s also registered–for life–as a sex offender.

    Because he did the right thing–but a DA wanted a pretty feather in his cap.

  131. Michael Cain says:


    There’s a chance his brood may do just that to protect their inheritance, provided there is any money left.

    Chances are good that it will take most of a decade of carefully unwinding the (large) set of interlocking LLCs to determine the net worth.

    Recall the Great Recession, when the Federal Reserve bought tons of “worthless” paper to keep the financial industry afloat. Over the course of years, most of that was sold for more then the Fed paid for it. But the timing of the sales was critical. Real estate assets are often “worthless” for years only to be sold eventually at a profit.

  132. Kurtz says:


    They all moved away from me on the bench there.
    And creatin’ a nuisance

  133. Mu Yixiao says:


    Sure, they’re not going to have had their uncle sit down at the family reunion and tell tales of liberating Dachau like I did, but… kids can graduate college without ever hearing about Auschwitz?

  134. gVOR08 says:

    @Teve: WWI is getting to be a long time ago. It came as a shock to me one day when I realized WWI was much closer in time to the Civil war, than to the present. I mean, after all, it was the 20th Century.
    Civil War 1861 – 1865; 159 to 155 years ago.
    WWI 1914 – 1918; 106 to 102 years ago.
    WWII 1939 – 1945; 81 to 75 years ago.

  135. flat earth luddite says:

    Shit… In high school were making fragmentation grenades out of CO2 canisters and black powder, and “firebomb drones” out of model airplanes stuffed with gas-soaked paper towels. Of course, back in those days you could buy dynamite wick, black powder, and blasting caps in the gun shop at the back of the drug store. Ah… the good ol’ days.

    Yeah, I had a college organic chem class in the early 70’s… our assigned textbook was “The Anarchists Cookbook.” IIRC, we had feds visiting campus, and attempting to seize books from students and bookstore. However, the class was an upper level class, and the class had one assignment over the term, “Your assignment is to identify every error in the Cookbook. You will get 1 point for every error you report. Final course grade is based on your total points (91-100=A, etc.). Again, this was a galaxy long ago and far, far away, but my memory is that none of the 25 students in class scored less than 150 points.

    As a child, I once tried clearing half an acre of Himalayan blackberries off a steep slope with 10 gallons of regular gas and a bunch of Styrofoam. And I had a friend who liked to put bullets (primer down) on a rock and hit ’em with a hammer. We never talk about the kids who liked to wiz on the electric fences, though. Good times.

  136. JohnSF says:

    @Mu Yixiao:
    I’m pretty familiar with WW1; maybe partly due to age, being more the boomer.
    And both my grandfathers fought (mothers father was at the Somme; fathers father in Palestine including Megiddo)

    But also, I get the feeling that even beyond the generational thing, for the US WW1 was a relatively minor affair, historically, compared to WW2 or the Civil War.
    It didn’t really change the country.
    In the UK, at least when I was growing up, it was interchangeably known as World War One and the Great War. Even now “Great War” has only one meaning.
    Same goes for France, I think.
    Though not for Germany, understandably.

    Almost every single settlement in Britain has a monument to the dead of the First World War.
    Apart from wider historical impact, the death totals give some indication of relative significance:
    WW2: 405,399
    WW1: 116,516
    WW2: 449,700
    WW1: 895,000

  137. Kurtz says:


    Save me a sit next to you in hell. To your Left, please.

  138. flat earth luddite says:

    @Kurtz: I’ll take the one on the right. I’m mostly deaf on the left side.

  139. Michael Cain says:

    @flat earth luddite:

    IIRC, we had feds visiting campus, and attempting to seize books from students and bookstore.

    As part of my final project for a public policy graduate class in Homeland Security several years back, I checked out a sequence of increasingly detailed textbooks and journal articles on weaponized anthrax through the university library. Part of me expected to answer the door one day and find an FBI agent or three wanting a chat.

    Ironically, what came closest to getting me in actual trouble was a small paper on what a terrorist cell could do with a few boxes of highway flares and pickup trucks driving the Forest Service roads when the weather was right. Turns out that’s a scenario the authorities took very, very seriously. Ironic because I’m in the process of moving into the smoke plume from the largest wildfire in Colorado history, and it’s climate change not terrorists.

  140. flat earth luddite says:

    @Michael Cain:
    I vaguely remember an article in Analog in the late 60’s or early 70’s, when a scientist explained that, rather than terrorists suborning nuclear materials and making a dirty bomb, much more damage could be done to the Eastern or Western seaboards with the same number of individuals, and quantities of fertilizer and diesel fuel (ANFO).

  141. flat earth luddite says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    “Student newspaper publishes instructions on how to make a molotov cocktail”

    @flat earth luddite:
    Sorry, lost the link to reply in my earlier rambling. Then I lost the edit button. Fortunately, I lost my mind a long time ago.

    Anyway, for those who don’t quite believe our mutual reminiscing, here’s a brief reminder of childhood in the 60’s:

    “A detailed diagram of how to put together a Molotov cocktail was probably not what most readers of The New York Review of Books would have been expecting on the magazine’s cover, but in the summer of 1967, that is what they found.”

    Can’t post with the link, but it’s from the New York Book Review in 1967. Cover picture in the article was stunning.

  142. Mu Yixiao says:

    @flat earth luddite:

    I bought a copy of the Anarchist’s Cookbook about 35 years ago (or more) at GenCon. This was way back before the days of paying with a phone, but I remember being very confused at people handing over their credit cards to purchase it.

    I just found it in my library. The spine is barely broken. We didn’t need instructions. 🙂

  143. Mikey says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    That’s a road to Hell.

    It’s unfortunate that happened to your friend, especially given a confirmed hack.

    But if Giuliani really has been holding a hard drive full of child pornography for weeks or months, it’s a different situation, especially for an attorney and a former prosecutor.

  144. Mu Yixiao says:

    @flat earth luddite:

    Back in my day* college students knew how to make real bombs.

    And, for those of you who don’t understand Madison… One of the crew that built that bomb later opened a sandwich shop on State Street (which connects the center of campus to the capitol building). It was called “The Radical Rye“.

    * Okay… I was 2 when this happened.

  145. JohnSF says:

    @flat earth luddite:
    Some years back, had an interesting discussion linked to a module of history of warfare, in which a postgrad with a background in the sneakier parts of the military explained what could be done by combining such materials with tankers of particular things and a careful selection of critical points of infrastructure.

    Eeek! was the appropriate reaction.

    Apparently that knowledge informs some sites and behaviors and materiel that government agencies monitor closely at during times of alert; if they are being sensible.

  146. Teve says:

    So I just looked at that holocaust survey. First of all, it wasn’t just college students, it seems to have been all Millennials and Gen Z. Second of all, 52% of those surveyed could name a concentration camp, 48% couldn’t. There wasn’t a huge amount of historical knowledge there, but if they really randomly sampled from millennials and Gen Z, keep in mind that Gen Z goes down to 10 years old. Shit, I probably couldn’t of named Bergen Belsen or Treblinka when I was 18. Not the end of the world.

  147. Teve says:

    ‘Couldn’t have named’. Goddam edit function.

  148. Kylopod says:

    @Teve: I’ve mentioned the anecdote before: I was in college and I mentioned to a girl that my grandparents were Holocaust survivors. She replied, “Did they know Anne Frank?”

  149. Teve says:

    @Mu Yixiao: I learned how to make ammonium triiodide from that book. VERY NOT RECOMMENDED 😀

  150. Kathy says:


    Related, I take a very dim view of reducing history to names and dates. Certainly they matter, but it matters more to know about the events on a given period, than the exact dates of the period.

  151. Teve says:

    @flat earth luddite: my granddad owned a quarry in Kentucky back in the 60s. They used dynamite to do certain things, and fertilizer plus diesel fuel to do other things. It was explained to me, ‘dynamite will crack the rock. That fertilizer will pulverize it.’

  152. Teve says:

    @Kathy: The best history teacher I ever saw, Dr. Calsum, never used exact dates. He always ballparked it, because he was just trying to set up a rough framework in your head. He made history into narratives, and thought a bunch of precise numbers got in the way.

  153. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Kathy: I suspect that the kids know that he’s essentially banko even now. That’s what hiring Guilfoyle and Lara Trump to be on the campaign committee was about–cashing in on whatever they can scrounge from the sofa cushions.

  154. keef says:


    So now its official. The FBI admits they have the laptop. The emails are legit, not Russian disinfo BS. Who knew? Honest people knew.

    Truth is the bloggers here aren’t stupid – they knew.

    Commenters…………pardon me while I vomit.

  155. Michael Cain says:

    @flat earth luddite:
    I attended a conference where a federal DHS guy described a scenario used in an actual “war game” where terrorists with a dozen stolen garbage trucks took out the right power grid transformers and rendered Cleveland uninhabitable because there would be no significant electrical power for six months (custom transformers built by Siemens in Europe with a six-month lead time). I do know that DHS has been trying to get utility companies to eat the cost of using smaller, easy to transport, easy to stockpile transformers.

    When I was an undergraduate many years ago the “free university” associated with the University of Nebraska allowed a Vietnam veteran to lecture for therapeutic reasons. I went to his lectures on how to render Lincoln uninhabitable by taking out the water, sanitary sewer systems, and local phone network with three fertilizer/diesel explosives.

  156. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    I’m up for Option 3–Lame-a$$ excuse to avoid being around him. I can’t see her as the rat deserting the sinking ship leaving to spend more time with her family type. She’s stuck now no matter what kind of a prenup she got with him. No assets to take with her. The Presidential pension is the whole nut.

    On the other hand, coming from Slovenia she’s probably quite capable of living comfortably on that kind of money. She probably knows how to be frugal and will be able to do with what she has when the time comes.

  157. flat earth luddite says:

    Oh, c’mon, Teve, boom=fun, big boom=WEEEEE! Ammonium triiodide (as outlined in TAC, at least)=stupidly dangerous. Personal experience, FWIW

    @Michael Cain:
    Diesel/fertilizer is still the poor man’s explosive. Unregulated, and much easier to get than the det cord we used for blowing stumps on the farm in the 60’s.

  158. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @MarkedMan: I was saying that while I was still in Korea. As I recall, HL92 intimated that my guess was correct, but claimed privilege for the details. I believe that my exact words were something to the effect of the estate consisting of whatever was left in the checking account.

  159. Sleeping Dog says:


    Hmmm. I suspect the writer of the article would say his father was sucked in. My thought is that at some level FN watchers are harboring a grievance or resentment that makes the susceptible. Add to that, many FN watchers were low news consumers before retirement, they may have read the local paper or TV news, but compared to Fox, those sources are just the facts, mam. All of a sudden, they are spending several hours a day watching Fox, listening Rush and spending their evenings on FaceBook getting who knows what garbage news.

  160. Kathy says:

    @Jay L Gischer:

    I’ll withhold comment on the lawsuit until I learn more about it.

    While I favor taking actions regarding the big tech companies, I’d prefer regulation on data, as mentioned, as well as other things, to reign them in and set boundaries as well as obligations. Like the law passe din California making gig workers employees rather than contractors, though the whole gig economy deserves a thread on its own. Working conditions in Amazon and other retailers. Things like that.

  161. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Teve: Get your mind out of the gutter!
    (Now, that’s a thought that didn’t occur to me. I must be slipping. 😉 😛 )

  162. Kathy says:

    Donnie Pessimus just threw another tantrum.

    Elsewhere (no link yet) he has threatened to air the interview himself prior to airtime (I find it hard to believe the network leaves a copy of the recording). To forestall this, CBS can put their raw footage on Youtube.

    Well, didn’t he promise a whole lot of whining four years ago?

  163. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Teve: A teacher I work for some times plays Saving Private Ryan for an elective class for Seniors called War on Film. I’ve shown several war related movies and PBS episodes over the past couple of years at the guest teacher. I just hope that it helps the kids to make wiser choices than “we” did–and tell them so when I get the chance.

  164. JohnMcC says:

    @Michael Cain: During WW2 the Japanese launched a series of balloons ‘aimed’ to ride the dominant air currents (the jet stream was unknown then) across the Pacific and land in the forests of the PNW. Until the recent western fires, that was thought of as rather silly.

  165. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Michael Cain: No, no. Climate change is a myth propagated by Chinese currency speculators. How Chinese currency speculators expect to profit from the destruction of timber in Colorado is beyond me, but here we are anyway.

  166. Teve says:


    Breaking: New NYT Trump taxes report.

    Trump’s tax records show that Trump maintains a previously unknown bank account in China. The foreign accounts do not show up on Trump’s public financial disclosures because they are held under corporate names.

  167. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Teve: Don’t beat yourself up. “Couldn’t’ve” is counter intuitive but what we say when speaking.

  168. Kingdaddy says:

    @Mu Yixiao: I once had a conversation with a friend and fellow history buff about which which world war was more consequential. WWI came out slightly ahead.

  169. Teve says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: I use voice rec on this tablet and I didn’t see the ‘of’ until I posted it. Voice rec on an iPad has weird idiosyncrasies. Like if I’m giving a multi-word proper noun it’ll get the noun right but only capitalize the first word. I’ll get “Tom hanks” or “Malcolm gladwell” for instance. WTF.

  170. Gustopher says:

    @Kathy: If people know millions of Jews were killed by the Nazis, that’s close enough. 2, 6, 9… hardly matters if they have the basic scale right.

  171. inhumans99 says:


    Why would you vomit over this story? Honest question, do you understand that 90%+ coverage and focus on Biden’s son, who is not running for office by the way (I am not sure you understand that fact) is coming from Fox, The Washington Examiner, the NY Post, and a handful of heavily biased right wing blogs?

    No one outside of incredibly hardcore Trump supporters is obsessed over this story. Seriously, and anyway, you have to love Trump because the same day this “news” comes out we learn that Trump has hidden accounts in China (a country that he claims to hate because they gave us Covid).

    For a story to take over the news cycle it has to be pretty much the only thing the general public (not just MAGA folks like yourself) will focus on over the next few days but between Trump ranting that everyone who hurts his feelings is a criminal and this China story well, good luck getting everyone to focus solely on Hunter Biden’s laptop.

    This “story” just shows that emails that still do not “prove” corruption are indeed from the laptop and quite frankly what is profoundly sad is you are okay with stolen goods being used as a political weapon.

    It makes you a rather pathetic creature. Also, believe me or not but this “news” does nothing to change the fact that Biden is probably going to be our next President. Tons of people have already voted and we are literally two weeks out from election day, this hail mary by the GOP/Trump is not working outside of the Base, and that is the problem…it needs to work on folks who are not already in the tank for Trump. Those folks are in the bag, the rest of the public…not so much.

    What makes me vomit (not literally, but you get my point) is that you are such a sad sack that you obsess over vague emails on a stolen laptop. Man up my good sir, you need to show you have steel in your spine but letting the laptop story lead you by the short hairs is just pathetic.

  172. Teve says:

    @inhumans99: have you even seen any confirmation that it’s Biden’s laptop? I haven’t.

  173. Gustopher says:

    @keef: No one believes you because you lie about everything.

  174. EddieInCA says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    Shit… In high school were making fragmentation grenades out of CO2 canisters and black powder, and “firebomb drones” out of model airplanes stuffed with gas-soaked paper towels. Of course, back in those days you could buy dynamite wick, black powder, and blasting caps in the gun shop at the back of the drug store. Ah… the good ol’ days.

    (I’m astounded that we made it to graduation with all our organs and appendages intact).

    I have this very vivid recollection of me and my buddies around the age of 14 throwing darts at each other from about 10-15 feet, using metal trash can lids as shields to protect us. Not those little, shitty plastic darts they sell today, but the big heavy steel ones with the 3/4 inch metal tip from back in the day. I remember taking one right in the thigh muscle, and just pulling it out and throwing it back at Ronnie DeJesus, nailing him in the shoulder. No helmets. No safety glasses. Just metal darts and trash can lids. It was only later that I realized I had a hole in my leg with blood pouring out of it.

    I’m surprised I’ve made it to 15, much less 60.

  175. Kurtz says:


    My first
    When I read about Trump abruptly ending the interview, my first read was he needed a fix. Then I thought of this Owen Wilson scene.

  176. Teve says:

    New Biden campaign ad Go From There

  177. Mister Bluster says:

    @Mu Yixiao:..I’m astounded that we made it to graduation with all our organs and appendages intact

    When was the last time you tried to find your ass with both hands?

  178. Jax says:

    Given the current state of the Edit function, and @MichaelCain’s apparent ability to see what’s wrong, I vote we (the commentariat) nominate Michael Cain to rebuild the edit function. I’ll even throw in an extra amount on this month’s Patreon to make it happen!

  179. Kurtz says:



    From Fox News:

    The FBI, in its letter to Johnson, wrote that “consistent with longstanding Department of Justice (Department) policy and practice, the FBI can neither confirm nor deny the existence of any ongoing investigation or persons or entities under investigation, including to Members of Congress.”

    Senior administration officials made the claim.

  180. JohnSF says:

    There’s an argument that WW1 killed the old world, but it shambled on like a zombie until WW2, which brought on the new system (which lasted until the late 1980’s.)

  181. Mikey says:

    @keef: The FBI admitted no such thing, of course. That’s just a line being pushed by the treason enablers in Congress (looking at you, Ron Johnson).

    The only real question for you is whether you’re stupid enough to believe this transparent bullshit or you’re deliberately and knowingly aiding a foreign adversary’s attack on the American electoral process.