Two Weeks In Forum

James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. PJ says:
  2. OzarkHillbilly says:

    The album we’ve all been waiting for: US toddler to release debut album recorded in the womb.

    An American toddler, Luca Yupanqui, is gearing up to release her debut album, the world’s first LP made from sounds inside the womb.

    You read it here folks.

  3. de stijl says:

    I’m considering a face tattoo.

    I’m of the age where I don’t give a crap anymore.

    My arms are full and I dislike torso and leg tattoos for unexplainable aesthetic reasons. Not my bag. If others are down for it, cool on them and not my business. Just not for me.

  4. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Via my eldest who has fallen in love with NOLA since his brother moved there, the Zombie Apocalypse is upon us.

  5. MarkedMan says:

    Andy and I have been going back and forth about average voters actually caring about policies, and whether Dems could attract Republicans voters by offering different policies. Here is an example of Republicans so loyal they both became Trump political appointees and are now scared and confused because they are not getting extended parental benefits because their employment ended with Trump’s:

    “It’s one thing if you have a household, if you have one family member who works for the government,” he said. “But we were both employed by the government so we’re losing both of our opportunities for health care and both our incomes, so it’s pretty scary to have a premature baby at home and not knowing if you’re going to have an income or health insurance.”

    They seem completely unaware that their party, the Republicans, have made it their cause to fight against any parental benefits and non-job related healthcare, as well as any benefits for government employees at all. If their is any set of Republican policies that is crystal clear, it is their undying opposition to paid family leave and non-employment based healthcare. This has been true for the entire lifetime of these Republican Political appointees. Yet they seem baffled and frightened that they will not get these benefits.

    These are people whose lives are about to get put through the wringer because of the very policies the party they have staked their careers in have championed for four decades or more. Yet the odds of them changing their affiliation is infinitesimal.

  6. de stijl says:


    I’m of the opinion that most voters are open to policy differences when they are young and choosing. After that, not so much.

    Technocratic personality types retain that analytic bent throughout life, but most choose a tribe and just go with that.

    It’s mostly tribal.

  7. de stijl says:


    A buddy of mine went to Tulane and was forever changed by New Orleans. Mostly for the better.

  8. MarkedMan says:

    @de stijl: I’ll just repeat the conversation I had with my daughter when she first told me she wanted a tattoo.
    “Dad, everyone’s getting a tattoo”
    “Do you like that T-Shirt you’re wearing?”
    “What!? Sure.”
    “Do you like it enough to wear it every day for the rest of your life even when it gets worn out and faded?”

  9. de stijl says:


    I used the word “considering” carefully.

    But I am very open to it. Choosing is the hard part, but it would be have to be art not text. I’ve a few notions.

    I never could settle on text for my knuckles so I’ve always passed on that so far. I’ve “considered” that for decades with no resolution so therefore no action.

    Seriously, I’m old enough to not really care. But I will consider carefully.

  10. OzarkHillbilly says:

    The times, they are a changing:

    They took Donald Trump to task. Now they’re ready to reshape the justice department

    On her last day at the justice department in 2017, Vanita Gupta considered taking a picture as she left the agency’s headquarters on Pennsylvania Avenue. But she decided against it. Gupta, the outgoing head of the department’s civil rights division, once described as the “crown jewel” of the agency, didn’t really want to remember the moment, she told a reporter who was shadowing her for the day.
    Gupta took a job as the head of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, a coalition of civil rights groups across the country, where she became one of the leading figures pushing back on the Trump administration.

    Joining Gupta in that effort was Kristen Clarke, a 47-year-old former justice department lawyer who leads the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, founded in 1963 to help attorneys in private practice enforce civil rights. As her group filed voting rights and anti-discrimination lawsuits across the country over the last few years, Clarke spent hours nearly every election day briefing journalists on reports of incoming voting problems. Reports of long lines, voting machine malfunctions, translator issues – no problem was too small. The monitoring sent a message that civil rights groups would move swiftly against any whiff of voter suppression.

    Now, after years of leading the fight for civil rights from outside the justice department, both women are poised to return to its top levels, where they can deploy the unmatchable resources of the federal government. Last month, Joe Biden tapped Gupta to serve as his associate attorney general, the No 3 official at the department, and Clarke to lead the civil rights division. If confirmed by the Senate, Gupta would be the first woman of color to be the associate attorney general; Clarke would be the first Black woman in her role.

    “They are both independently legit civil rights champions with a long deep history,” said Justin Levitt, who worked with Gupta at the justice department and knows both women well. “They’re going to make a really spectacular, really powerful team.”

    Picking two career civil rights lawyers for two of the top positions at the justice department sends an unmistakable signal that civil rights enforcement will be a top priority for the agency over the next four years. Civil rights leaders said they could not remember a prior administration in which two of the department’s highest positions were filled by civil rights attorneys, especially two such as Clarke and Gupta.

    Nice profiles, I knew of Gupta, but Clarke was a blank spot.

  11. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @de stijl: If my wife ever gets a tattoo on her forehead, it would have to say, “Sap”, but she really doesn’t need one as it is written across her face for everyone to see.

  12. de stijl says:


    If it goes onto the forehead it would wrap around the eye socket. (That’s gonna hurt.)

    Art, not text.

    I have a melanoma removal scar directly below right eye that bugs me. It’s too shiny.

  13. de stijl says:

    I already have a excised piece of butt skin affixed to my face.

    That’s pretty effin’ metal.

  14. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @de stijl: I had an infected cyst/tumor removed from my face. The surgeon did a pretty good job putting it all back together. You can’t really see the scar (which itches like crazy of late), but the wrinkles on that side of my face are horizontal where as they run at a 30 degree angle on the other side.

  15. de stijl says:

    We had freezing fog overnight and every tree branch is white.

    It is very cool looking.

  16. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @de stijl: Hoarfrost is beautiful.

  17. de stijl says:

    O-o-h Child by The Five Stairsteps.

    I like the the Soultrain version coz of the dancing.

    Yearning for a better life tomorrow. Soon.

  18. DrDaveT says:

    @de stijl:

    I’m considering a face tattoo. […] My arms are full

    Sounds like you need a Table of Contents…

  19. MarkedMan says:

    McCarthy reportedly told the panel that he would potentially try to convince House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) to back off a House floor vote to remove her from the Budget Committee if he removes Greene from the Education and Labor Committee.

    Ah, the Republican Party Leadership… “OK, so let’s not cut the baby in half. You can keep a third.”

  20. CSK says:

    @de stijl:
    To hide the scar, you could always just buy some cover stick concealer for $4.98 and save yourself the pain and expense of the tattoo.

  21. de stijl says:


    I’m not ever going to do chest or back or legs. I cannot tell you why, but that is not even an option. Weird personal aesthetics I don’t understand. No rational reason.

    Well, possibly neck. I’d think hard that about it, tho. Most likely not. Very likely not.

    Face? No prob. It obviously has to wait until at least fall if not later.

    I’m gonna think it through.

    Hard core folks go skull. Not for me. That would hurt like hell and looks kinda stupid imo.

  22. de stijl says:


    Where’s the fun in that?

  23. Kathy says:

    This is a bit odd. AstraZeneca says their vaccine reduces transmission by over 60%.

    So, wasn’t eliminating transmission the whole point of vaccines?

    In the long ter, yes. When a virus can’t reproduce inside a host, fewer viral particles are available, and thence transmission goes down. but it was always possible any vaccine to merely result in lots of asymptomatic but transmissible cases. apparently this is not so, ergo vaccines do reduce transmission right away.

    This is good news, but these are also early results and about just one vaccine.

  24. Owen says:

    @CSK: My dad once told us kids a story he claimed to have heard from his uncle, a British medical orderly in WWI. Allegedly, when patients came in for amputations, if there were any complete tattoos after the surgery the orderlies would skin the limb and tan the skin, then use the skin to make a lamp shade. The moral of the story was, before getting a tattoo, think about how it would look as a lampshade. Needless to say, there are not any tattoos in our family.

  25. JohnSF says:

    @de stijl:
    What about calligraphic art; Chinese characters or Arabic script saying “I’m considering a face tattoo.”

  26. CSK says:

    Good God. Is that where Ilse Koch got the idea? How revolting.

  27. Sleeping Dog says:

    File under: It couldn’t happen to a better group of people.

    The Down Side to Life in a Supertall Tower: Leaks, Creaks, Breaks

    Six years later, residents of the exclusive tower are now at odds with the developers, and each other, making clear that even multimillion-dollar price tags do not guarantee problem-free living. The claims include: millions of dollars of water damage from plumbing and mechanical issues; frequent elevator malfunctions; and walls that creak like the galley of a ship — all of which may be connected to the building’s main selling point: its immense height, according to homeowners, engineers and documents obtained by The New York Times.

    “Everybody hates each other here,” she said, but, for the most part, residents want to keep the squabbling out of the public eye.

    Tee hee

  28. de stijl says:


    I am not an amateur.

    I do have some text tats tho. “Unsatisfied” running down my left radius. In hostage letter font / manner. I like that one a lot.

  29. CSK says:

    @Sleeping Dog:
    Are we absolutely sure Donald Trump had nothing to do with the construction of this edifice?

  30. Mikey says:


    These are people whose lives are about to get put through the wringer because of the very policies the party they have staked their careers in have championed for four decades or more.

    “I never thought leopards would eat MY face!” sobs woman who voted for the Leopards Eating People’s Faces Party.

  31. Kathy says:

    Speaking of COVID, we had the Thanksgiving spike, then the Christmas/New Year’s spike, and we’re heading into the Super Bowl spike.

    The other day I heard a brief mask argument at the accounting department downstairs. One person didn’t have their mask on, and another was telling them to put it on. The offending party replied “It’s ok. I’ve worn it for over 8 hours.”

    That explains why the virus keeps spreading.

  32. Gustopher says:

    @de stijl: I think face tattoos are dumb, but… how about an insect? As realistic as possible, right where the scar is… a fly. Let the world think you have an insect crawling on you.

    (Avoid a spider unless you have read the comic Transmetropolitan, and want to look like the main character)

    Or decaying flesh and a maggot. Or split skin showing circuitry or wires underneath.

    Oh, big project, but it might be worth it… remember the guy who was going into witness protection with massive face tattoos and everyone was laughing at him because he can never hide? Takeshita 6ix9ine? Give him some cover. Get the same tattoos.

    (I want to get a tattoo of my beloved and departed one-eyed tuxedo cat, but it will have to wait until after the pandemic and by then my feelings may have faded. Also, I’m on blood thinners — not sure how much that messes things up)

  33. de stijl says:


    I was thinking Nordic inspired.

    I understand you are being pretty aggro with that comment. I would prefer you back off a bit, please.

  34. de stijl says:

    A lot of you need to back the fuck off.

  35. Sleeping Dog says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Your part of the country made the NYT for something good at risk.

    In the Ozarks, the Pandemic Threatens a Fragile Musical Tradition

    Interest in Old Time music, skipped a couple of generations, but their appears to be a revival of interest among the youth. It would be too bad if the oldsters passed before teaching the kids.

  36. de stijl says:


    I did not appreciate that. At all. I thought you were being consciously rude. Provocatively so.

    That was beneath you.

  37. Owen says:

    @CSK: I’m going to go out on a limb and say that in all likelihood the story probably had some basis in fact, but had been embellished by my dad (and whoever he first heard it from) to condition us kids to never get tattoos. By the story coming from his “uncle”, it provides the story familiarity and implied validity, a classic but effective disinformation technique.

    As an adult I heard an anecdote similar to Marked Man’s T-Shirt. Once you decide which tattoo you want, wait 24 hours before getting it to be sure you want to live with it the rest of your life. That is the less gory story I passed on repeatedly to my kids and nephews (27 to 22 respectively) and none appear to have made that commitment yet.

    As I understand it, Koch and associates were collecting tattoos to do a study linking criminal behavior to tattoos, so probably not directly related to my dad’s story. A tatted military co-worker in the early 1990s indignantly relayed to us how his then girlfriend’s (and future third ex-wife’s) commander pulled her aside to warn her that he noticed her beau was tatted up, and that was a good indicator that he was likely to abuse alcohol and her. Turns out the commander was right in both cases.

  38. Sleeping Dog says:

    @de stijl:

    Personally, not a fan of tats. The exception being tattoos that signify membership in a exclusive group i.e., members of the military who have an inscription of their unit, ship or a fallen comrade. Prison and gang tattoos make the cut as well, along with family.

    But I’ve mellowed in my old age and just shrug.

    My favorite tattoo ever, I saw on the buttocks of young stripper in Des Moines, it was in the shape of a meat stamp and proclaimed her as “Grade A,” where a normal meat stamp would say USDA, her’s said “Property of Butch.” That was better than 30 years ago and I wonder how that tat survived the indignities of aging? Not to mention, was Butch still around and if not what did her partner think of it?

  39. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Gustopher: I’m on blood thinners – not sure how much that messes things up)

    If you’re on xarelto, stop them 3 days before and start them again right after. If not, ask your Doc. Regardless, it’s no big deal. I’ve had to go off mine several times for surgeries.

  40. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @de stijl: A lot of you need to back the fuck off.

    As one who kept his personal opinions to himself I feel the need to say, you brought it up and in so doing you invited other people to weigh in. What did you think was going to happen?

  41. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Sleeping Dog: As a long time fan and follower of old time folk music, I have to say I am not too worried. I have seen it’s popularity at low tide and high. I have a lot of musician friends who are deep into it, making the pilgrimage to Winfield every year. These things ebb and flow and change is a constant. So are the complaints.

  42. de stijl says:

    @Sleeping Dog:

    The Lumberyard? North of city proper?

    (I now have that Google search in my history. Thanks!)

    For a stripper a USDA Prime stamp on her bum is fucking brilliant. I applaud her taste and brains.

    I hate stripper clubs, myself. As a het dude, hate ’em all. I see them as evil adjacent.

  43. de stijl says:


    I asked for it?

  44. de stijl says:


    What did you think was going to happen?

  45. de stijl says:

    I expect people to be not be dicks and to be responsible.

  46. Kingdaddy says:

    Since we get into the occasional SF conversation here, I thought I’d mention that I’m re-reading the Dying Earth series by Jack Vance. Wow, even better than I remembered.

  47. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @de stijl: What you are doing is the equivalent of complaining about how wet the water is.

    I expect people to be not be dicks and to be responsible.

    And you are the soul judge of dickishness and responsibility? Guess what? You aren’t. You know what else? Neither am I. FTR I don’t think anybody crossed any lines. Maybe went up to them, but they didn’t cross. Not that what I think matters any. This is the internet. Either get used to people crossing your arbitrary lines or get used to whining a lot.

    And for the record, yes, you did ask for it, you asked for the opinion of others by bringing it up. Opinions are the currency of blogs, it’s the sole reason each of us are here: to share our opinions. I don’t know what you expected when you brought it up but you should have known that it wasn’t going to be all peaches and cream, that somebody would take exception or probably carry the thought into the absurd or what was it you said? Be provocatively rude???

    Why… I have never heard of anyone behaving in such a manner on the internet!

  48. Just nutha ignint cracker says:
  49. Kathy says:

    @de stijl:

    I’ve never been even mildly interested in getting a tattoo, but I’m even less interested in telling people what to do with their bodies.

    To be honest, last time in Vegas I saw a temporary tattoo stand in Fremont St., and I thought about a pink butterfly on my left wrist. It would disappear in weeks, after all. alas, they only did them in black ink, and a black butterfly is a moth, yuck!

    I also wonder if some kind of semi-invisible ink could be used. Say ultraviolet ink, which would show only under “black” light. Probably not, as the ink goes under the epidermis, and what would be the point, rigth?

  50. Jen says:

    @Kathy: I read the NYT piece on that this morning, what struck me is that it hasn’t been peer-reviewed yet. So, best to keep enthusiasm in check, but overall is very positive news (especially in the UK, where they’ve been dealing with runaway infections from a variant). I am taking all of the good news I can get.

  51. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Kathy: Luddite sent me an item about a wedding photographer who was told by the bride that the groom had just recently tested positive for Covid-19 but that the photographer didn’t need to worry because “he wasn’t showing any symptoms.”

    And yes, these people are exactly why the epidemic continues. And happy Super Bowl Sunday to you. I’ll be in my secret underground bunker.

  52. MarkedMan says:

    @de stijl: I’m curious. Did you take my comment as dickish?

    My impression of the whole conversation was that it was pretty typical and not at all dickish. You asked for input. People gave it to you. Those replies spurred anecdotes, which in turn spurred more or less successful attempts at cleverness. I didn’t see any of it as dickish.

  53. Kathy says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    I think I read that one. the photographer tested positive later, and I think also one or more of her children.

    I wonder what part of “asymptomatic transmission” is so hard for some people to comprehend.

  54. Kathy says:


    Early studies of just one vaccine need to be taken in perspective.

    BTW, the explanations we get, and I repeat here often, about how vaccines work, are rather incomplete. There’s more to vaccines than antibodies. For instance, in addition to the virus vector, or mRNA bits, most vaccines carry an adjuvant, which has either complementary or additional effects to the main vaccine agent (or I suppose both).

    And then there’s the matter of new SaRS-CoV-2 variants cropping up all over, as is natural with so wide and massive a spread. We don’t quite know how effective current vaccines will be with each variant.

  55. de stijl says:


    I read @Gustopher: ‘s comment as supremely dickish and demeaning. Provocatively so.

    @OzarkHillbilly: telling me I asked for it. And, what did you think would happen? That was pretty triggering.

  56. Gustopher says:

    @de stijl: Didn’t mean it as rude — meant it as “my suggestions may be terrible suggestions” but I actually think the fly might be cool. And depending on how goth or cyberpunk you want to be, the decaying flesh or circuitry might be fun.

    But I would never do it myself. But you do whatever dumb things you want to, and I’ll do whatever dumb things I want to, and so long as it doesn’t hurt anyone, it’s all good.

    Sorry to have caused offense. Genuinely sorry, not a “if anyone was offended” sorry, but a “you’re clearly offended” “I mixed different levels of humor and not and created something that was read differently than intended” sorry.

    The fly seems cool. Or a fancy beetle.

    And a tattoo of a cutaway to a 1:1 anatomical diagram of what lies beneath is cool.

    But any facial tattoo is going to change how people view you, and if those judgments on a hypothetical bother you… you might want to go for a temporary tattoo and try it out.

    Also, I would really caution against Nordic — the white supremacists are using a lot of Nordic imagery. The eagle grabbing lightning bolts or whatever might be fine now, but in three years might be the insignia of the New Proud Boys.

    Somewhere, someone probably got tattooed with the Indian cycle of life symbol in the early 1930s, and then spent the 1940s and on explaining that actually the Nazis appropriated the swastika.

    (Takesha 6ix9ine is just funny… the only way he will be able to hide is if lots of people get identical tattoos).

  57. Mu Yixiao says:


    I also wonder if some kind of semi-invisible ink could be used. Say ultraviolet ink, which would show only under “black” light. Probably not, as the ink goes under the epidermis, and what would be the point, rigth?

    UV tats are definitely a thing that exists. Do a quick Google Image search and you can see some creative applications for them. 🙂

  58. Gustopher says:

    I wonder if the e-ink for kindles and the like could be used for tattoos — and how much of the display tech could be embedded.

    Having your forearm cycle through three or four different tattoos would be amazing. Especially if one was an ad and that was how the whole thing was funded.

    Even something where the tiny e-ink balls are rotated by a magnetic field from the outside — where you are effectively turning the person into an etch-a-sketch would be nifty.

  59. de stijl says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    Oh my!

    Oh my! Not for me. But cool on him. That had to hurt like bloody hell!

    Needle on bone is not pleasant.

    It’s not my jam. But bully for him. Way too much red for my taste. I prefer a softer palate overall. Like HGTV hosts say a “pop of color”. No more.

    But it’s his skull and he can do what he wants.

    I liked that went to Bing images. Bing gets no love.

    A buddy of mine got a Pollock splatter painting tat over his whole back and that is cool as fuck. I would never, but he chose to.

  60. SC_Birdflyte says:

    @Sleeping Dog: My wife and I dined at the Rainbow Room a few years back. At that time, I thought (and still think) that 432 Park is an eyesore on the Manhattan skyline.

  61. Sleeping Dog says:

    @de stijl:

    Can’t remember the name of the club, but it was in Ankeny.

  62. Mu Yixiao says:


    I haven’t seen anything like that, but there are electronic “tattoos” that are applied to the outside of the skin. And I believe I read about a guy that got LEDs implanted in his arm in the classic 7-bar pattern and made it be a watch.

  63. MarkedMan says:


    Somewhere, someone probably got tattooed with the Indian cycle of life symbol in the early 1930s, and then spent the 1940s and on explaining that actually the Nazis appropriated the swastika.

    You don’t have to go back that far to run into such jarring oddities. When I lived in China I lived very close to Jing An Buddhist temple. The swastika was everywhere. When I crossed the street and stepped onto the tiled walkway in front of the coffeeshop there, it was patterned with swastikas. I noticed it for the first few days and then never really saw it again. I never asked anyone, but I imagine the Buddhists feel the way about the Nazis stealing their symbol the same way Christians feel about the Ku Klux Klan burning cross.

  64. de stijl says:


    I accept. But your content was not well received. It read as mocking. Strongly so.

    I know Nazis have tried to capture Nordic iconography and I hate them for that, and much more so for their ideology.

    It can be reclaimed. There is a movement to do so now. Heilung is the most widely known. Fuck those nazi guys.

    I’m smart and savvy enough to not do something that would perhaps taint me as them. Your concern is noted.

    It’s my face.

  65. Kathy says:

    I finished “Surely You’re joking, Mr Feynman” today, and moved right on to a Great Courses lecture series on secret societies. IT seems germane in today’s climate, plus I bet myself three’d be at least one mention of the Stonecutters.

    After that I may try another Feynman book. I’m interested to read his account of his time in the commission that investigated the Challenger disaster back in the 80s.

    And after that, I guess I’ll be in the mood for light reading. I found a few novels based on the TV show “The Librarians.” I liked the show because a) Lindy Booth is brilliant, and b) they attempted to treat magic scientifically (which never works, but is fun), so I’ll probably try that one.

  66. de stijl says:


    A tiny bit. It was more anecdote. But it was an anecdote with a pointed barb.

    It’s very cool you asked, though.

    I appreciate that.

  67. de stijl says:

    @Sleeping Dog:

    Yep. Lumberyard.

    Why do strip clubs have such awful names? They try to be coy with obvious words.

  68. Mu Yixiao says:

    @de stijl:

    Why do strip clubs have such awful names? They try to be coy with obvious words.

    The one near NenahMenAppleKosh (aka “the Fox Valley”) was called “Bean Snappers”. I never figured out the reasoning behind that name.

  69. de stijl says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    Is that in Wisconsin or China?

    Bean Snappers?

    I don’t know and I choose not to delve further. It’s too disturbing.

  70. CSK says:

    @de stijl:
    According to the Urban Dictionary, a “beansnapper” is a person or thing that causes a man to lose his erection.

    Not quite the effect one would think a strip club would be eager to advertise, would one?

  71. MarkedMan says:

    @de stijl:

    It’s too disturbing.

    My thoughts exactly. The visuals in my imagination will give me nightmares.

  72. Sleeping Dog says:

    @de stijl:

    30-35 years ago there were at least 4 clubs you might consider north of Des Moines. 3 in and around Ankeny of which 2 were shut down when the law was changed denying them liquor licenses if they were within 500′ of a residence, school or church and one near the Firestone(?) tire factory that was dry.

  73. Kathy says:

    One last word for today about COVID vaccines: Mexico, as expected, is doing lousy.

    Vaccinations started with much fanfare on Dec. 24th, with the arrival of (drum roll please), 3,000 doses of Pfizer’s vaccine.

    You read that right: three thousand.

    To date, there have been around 650,000 shots given, not counting a few second doses. At this rate, a quick and dirty calculation tells me we’ll vaccinate all 120 million people in just a tad over thirteen years. We’d best pick it up a bit.

    Allegedly a few million doses of the Oxford/AstraZeneca shot have shown up, but have yet to be distributed. Yesterday the government launched a registration site for senior citizens (60 and up), which crashed within minutes. That’s nice, even if you don’t get even an estimate of when you may get the shot. Today the site is reported as back up and running. I haven’t checked it, because why add strain on a system I can’t use yet.

    Also today, the Sputnik V vaccine got emergency use authorization (is it emergency use if you plan to use it on millions of people who are not even sick?)

    I don’t think this mess is peculiarly Mexican. The response to the H1N1 flu eleven years ago, especially in Mexico City, was good and the outbreak was contained in a few months. Granted, that was a less contagious bug.

    This mess is peculiar to the idiot would-be king we have as president. Does one expect prompt, decisive action as regards vaccination from a man who’s been downplaying the pandemic for months, who won’t wear a mask, and who will likely play another Trump and show his recovery from COVID as proof the precautions and measures are overblown?

  74. Mu Yixiao says:

    @de stijl:

    Is that in Wisconsin or China?

    North East Wisconsin (the area south of Green Bay which contains Neenah, Menasha, Appleton, and Oshkosh.

  75. de stijl says:

    @Sleeping Dog:

    You do understand Google constructs a profile of you based on your search patterns. Yes?

    Unless you DuckDuckGo’d that.

    You’re going to get provocative ads in the near future if you Googled.

    A friend of mine was a bikini girl working one of the beer-only satellite bar stations. She has tales to tell. The gist is that men are pigs and will buy a super obvious con.

  76. de stijl says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    I will go with local knowledge, but none of those towns are northern to my mind. East central.

    I knew a dude named Drew went to UWSP. Super mellow stoner dude. We picked him up on the way to Apple Valley (my friend was a Stones freak). Super duper mellow.

    He transferred to U of M Minneapolis.

    Drew was one cool cat. And hooked me up with shrooms as needed. Way too into Phish and Exploding Head Trick, but it’s not mine to judge.

    Wonder what he is up to now? Suburban dad, prolly.

  77. inhumans99 says:

    So many threads today where people are being snappish at each other (Michael antagonizing our hosts, almost par for the course for him lately), de stijl getting into back/forths over tattoos (if I were a bolder soul I would get a smallish tattoo on my upper arm so I would still be work safe), multiple folks tearing James a new one over his McConnell testing out his spine again post (which, for what it is worth made me chuckle), I thought the theme of the year is Unity (unless Biden needs to use the Budget Reconciliation Process to get stuff done, Unity is all well and good unless McConnell tries to spend the next 6 months wasting Biden’s time).

    I am not saying we all have to hold hands and sing campfire songs but c’mon, we like each other on this great site, it is jarring to see so much sniping today.

    I say this as someone who just got called to the Principal’s Office at work today so despite the day I have been having I am still hanging tough.

    For the most part, we are a friendly bunch on this site, we may not all agree with each other all the time but some of the rhetoric has gotten to be a bit much from some of us (you know who you are) so perhaps we can dial it back a notch.

    I love that James is able speak his mind and the occasional attempts to snap at him and insist he should bow down to the wisdom of the crowd on this site drives me a bit nuts, if I wanted to go to a site where the base (aka, the commenters on a site/blog) is the tail that wags the dog there are plenty of those sites on the web, part of what makes this place so special is that we have a host (actually hosts, including Steven and Kingdaddy) that is bold enough to put himself out there and talk about how his mind has shifted thoughts on certain subjects and people and what led to the change in thought.

    I love reading James’s posts where he lays out how his thoughts on certain things have changed over the years, and it is really neat to be afforded this insight from someone who is still technically a Republican (lets face it James, if Romney made it on the ticket in 2024 you would pivot so fast to vote for him I would get whiplash…lol).

    I really do not think I am overstating things when I say that it feels like we are starting to lose sight of what makes this blog so special. Let James, Steven, and Kingdaddy be true to their selves, I do not want them to conform to the prevailing wisdom in either the Republican or Democratic party. Perhaps, if less folks did that we would not have so many people who just get lazy and pick a team and refuse to see their opponents point of view and just insist their team is 100% right all the time regardless of their teams actions.

  78. Just nutha ignint cracker says:


    I wonder what part of “asymptomatic transmission” is so hard for some people to comprehend.

    The fact that it means that they have responsibilities to others, I guess. Significant numbers of Americans seem to think that living in community means you having responsibilities to me rather than we having responsibilities toward each other. Fortunately, they’re still not the majority… yet.

  79. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @de stijl: I usually end up going to Bing these days. It’s the default situation from being too ignint of a cracker to go to the places that the cool kids go to, so that I end up using Edge to surf.

  80. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @SC_Birdflyte: Eyesore is too strong. Merely boring and unimaginative. An eyesore would be if it was painted red and had “Trump” stretching down from 4/5 up to near the bottom in gold lettering on all four sides.

  81. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @CSK: Your knowledge of slang is fascinating. 😀

  82. de stijl says:


    My snappishness today is not my usual. Not unwarranted imo, but I prefer an even keel.

    I understand where you are coming from.

  83. de stijl says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    Bing gets no love.

    They have gorgeous nature pics on their home page / search bar.

    And you can totes be a cool kid by casually dropping yeah I Binged [whatever] yesterday and blah blah.

    Erbody gonna go “Bing?” What’s that?

  84. CSK says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:
    My intellectual curiosity is exceeded only by my linguistic versatility.

  85. JohnSF says:

    @de stijl:
    Just looked back in. Hope my earlier was not taken as being snide.
    As I’ve maybe said before, English humour can sometimes come over as carping or sarcastic or derogatory to others, which we sometimes forget. Even when it’s really not meant that way.
    Irony is the Brit. default setting, I’m afraid.

  86. Mister Bluster says:
  87. Mister Bluster says:

    Nothing is more important than stopping fascism, because fascism is gonna stop us all.
    Fred Hampton

  88. flat earth luddite says:

    Well said. Thanks for writing it. The Luddite is quietly repeating his mantra. Hmmmmmmm.

  89. de stijl says:


    Not a prob, mate.

  90. de stijl says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    I added Bing to my home page just now. I promise to use it. I was not lying before. The home page always has gorgeous pictures.

    I used Google to search it. When in Rome, I guess.

  91. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    We haven’t had a headline of the day recently, so…3 Pennsylvania neighbors dead after fight shoveling snowCome on people, be better.

  92. de stijl says:

    My heart’s an autoclave

  93. flat earth luddite says:

    @Mu Yixiao:
    Speaking of awful names, wealthy suburb of Portland (very upscale) has a strip mall with the usual collection of upscale restaurants, body/esthete shops, high end real estate, and a killer local coffee shop. One of the esthete shops is named “Lunchbox Wax, A Face and Body Waxing Salon.” This is apparently part of a nation-wide franchise. My immediate reaction was that I was back in Seattle circa 1970, when there were more body painting studios than strip clubs. And there were a LOT of strip clubs.

    Going back to my mantra. Hmmmmmmm.

  94. Gustopher says:

    @de stijl:

    But your content was not well received. It read as mocking. Strongly so.

    @inhumans99 notes that everyone is snapping at each other, and I have been in a weird mood since the coup attempt — like I hit a wall where I realized things are going to keep sucking for a long, long time and it’s all so fucking exhausting. Maybe that came out. Maybe you’re having a hard go of it too and you’re being sensitive. I usually assume I’m the one being the asshole though.

    I do find it hard to reconcile the guy who likes to have a big mohawk and look tough so he can freak out the normies by then being nice and subvert their expectations also being the guy who gets offended by a guy on the internet being judgmental about face tattoos.

    Take care of yourself. And I’ll take care of myself. At least one of us is a bit more off than usual, and I doubt either of us can be 100% sure.

    Now I’m just chilling, listening to MGMT’s Time To Pretend, which you turned me onto. And Har Mar Superstar is on deck.

  95. de stijl says:


    You might like Kate Nash Foundations.

    So Britishly snarky. Nth level disdain at her ex. From 2007.