Wednesday’s Forum

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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

Comments

  1. Kurtz says:

    My land essay is not ready. Sorry, @Jax. More playing with the cats with the laser pointer for you. 😉

    1
  2. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Robert F Hyde. Jeebus, these are not smart people. The prayer, “Lord? Make my enemies ridiculous.” may have been answered. I wonder how the usual suspects are going to spin this? I have no doubt they will come up with something, and no matter how ridiculous and self incriminating it is, the cult will buy it because CrookedHillary#.

    I have been saying for awhile that the entire GOP is a crime cartel, not just the trump admin. If/when the Senate aides and abets this criminal conspiracy after the fact by voting to acquit, and they will, I will have a really hard time resisting the urge to slap the piss out of every trump voter I know.

    8
  3. Teve says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I was listening to this podcast the other day about this guy who hiked across Mongolia and these other really out-of-the-way places along the Yangtze River and such. And he talked about being in this village, and he had to pay the local witch to cast spells so he’d be protected from the evil witches in the other village, and he had to carry this white chicken around so the demons wouldn’t get him, and he comes across this one village where babies are dying, and then he notices that the villagers are burning plastic for heat and the babies are choking on the fumes, and honestly I couldn’t help thinking, this isn’t really shocking. This is just the Asian equivalent of Trump Country.

    2
  4. Teve says:

    @richlowry

    That the mayor of South Bend has managed to get on the debate stage this late in the campaign and make grand pronouncements on matters of war and peace is very impressive—and wholly ridiculous

    @chrislhayes

    Donald Trump is president.

    6
  5. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Aaron Fritschner
    ‏ @Fritschner

    For when Trump inevitably tries to say he hasn’t met Robert F. Hyde

    1
  6. Teve says:

    “She’s going to go through some things”

    Raise your hand if you can see a Robert De Niro character saying that.

    3
  7. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Josh Lederman
    ‏Verified account @JoshNBCNews

    NEWS – Robert Hyde reacts. He tells me tonight via text message:

    “How low can liddle Adam Bull Schiff go. To take some texts my buddy’s and I wrote while we had a few drinks to some dweeb I met a few times…. Bull Schiff is a desperate turd.”

    Yeah! While on a 7 day bender!

    1
  8. Teve says:

    buddy’s

    I’m starting to think the apostrophe is like calculus. Any given time, only a minority of people are ever going to understand how to use it correctly.

    6
  9. Kurtz says:

    @Teve:

    It’s America in 2020, Teve. Calculus? Pfff. Try basic math. At most, Algebra.

    4
  10. Teve says:

    Nah. Math ability trends slowly upward decade after decade. My dad’s high school didn’t even offer calculus. 16% of HS students now take it, compared with 11% 20 years ago, and 4% in 1980.

    There’s also the Flynn Effect.

    2
  11. Kurtz says:

    @Teve:

    My Calculus teacher was a hilarious bear of a man. He used to pick my grey hairs out during tests.

    2
  12. OzarkHillbilly says:

    In 2017, Dow Chemical scored a long-sought-after victory: after a push from the US government, China approved the import of the company’s genetically modified herbicide-resistant corn seeds.

    A grateful Dow lobbyist emailed a senior agriculture department official whose support had been critical: “Thank you for your efforts in support of U.S. agriculture.”

    That official, Rebeckah Adcock, was no stranger to Dow. Before joining the Trump administration, Adcock was the chief lobbyist for the herbicide industry’s trade group, of which Dow was a prominent member.

    Adcock had helped her former industry colleagues in a variety of ways. At Dow’s request, for example, she had arranged a meeting between a top company official and the secretary of agriculture, Sonny Perdue, about the seed issue.

    Before the May 2017 meeting, a Dow lobbyist emailed Adcock: “Do you know who will staff the secretary?”

    Adcock wrote back playfully: “Yes and u do too.”

    “Roger”, the lobbyist, Hunt Shipman, replied. Then he joked about the potential conflict of a public servant helping former colleagues: “Maybe you can have a chair on both sides of the table… maybe you can staff them both? :).” It’s unclear if Adcock sat in on the meeting, but her government ethics agreement allowed her to communicate extensively and offer her assistance to the association’s members, including Dow.

    Adcock isn’t the only lobbyist who has made her way to the federal government. Roughly one of every 14 appointments in the Trump administration has been a lobbyist. But previously unreported emails show Adcock repeatedly trading notes with industry players to craft policy.

    3
  13. Mikey says:
  14. An Interested Party says:

    @Teve: I wonder how William F. Buckley would feel about Lowry’s total slavishness to Trump…I suspect that the he would be a little upset that the magazine he created is now little more than a mouthpiece for this particular administration…

    2
  15. OzarkHillbilly says:

    If a demanding job on a tiny island with no electricity, wifi or hot showers but lots of wind sounds tempting, join the queue.

    An advert for two caretakers to manage accommodation and a cafe on Great Blasket island, off Ireland’s Atlantic coast, has drawn queries from Alaska to South Africa.

    The posts, which run from 1 April to 1 October this year, include free accommodation and food and spectacular views off Ireland’s most westerly point.

    “It’s intense and tough but it’s a very unique position,” Alice Hayes, who placed the advert, told RTE on Tuesday. “It’s back to basics – fires, candles, stoves, wildlife and nature.” The ideal candidates had to get on well so the job would suit two friends or a couple, and they had to be fit, personable and chatty, she said. “No day is ever the same.”

    Damn, that leaves me out. “Fuck you.” is me being both personable and chatty.

    3
  16. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Russian government resigns after Putin proposes reforms that would weaken his successor

    Moscow, Russia (CNN)The entire Russian government is resigning, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev announced on Russian state television Wednesday.
    Russian President Vladimir Putin thanked members of the government for their work but added that “not everything worked out.” Putin added that in the near future he will meet with each member of the cabinet.
    The announcement came after Putin proposed constitutional amendments that would weaken his successor and shift power to the prime minister and parliament.

    1
  17. Jax says:

    @Teve: I occasionally find myself guilty of apostrophe misuse. It bothers me greatly, my AP English teacher was a real hardass (slap your fingers with a ruler for a wrong answer hardass), but by God, I came out of that class with a solid grasp of English.

    I find, however, as I get older, I am less sure of where that damn apostrophe belongs. Enough so that I sometimes rephrase entire sentences to avoid having to use it!

    3
  18. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Mikey: Yeah I know. I’m just pointing out how blatant they are acting. I didn’t quote this above but maybe I should have:

    All federal employees are subject to standards of conduct that require them to be impartial and to seek authorization before participating in matters where their impartiality is likely to be questioned.

    “As a US official, she cannot represent any person’s interest other than the [US government’s] in matters in which US interests are at stake,” Canter said.

    Like other officials, Adcock signed a Trump administration ethics agreement, promising to avoid conflicts of interest. But the agreement gave Adcock wide berth, allowing her to offer help to Dow and other clients of the herbicide and pesticide trade group she worked for.

    The trump admin is explicitly allowing for it, even endorsing it.

    1
  19. CSK says:

    @Teve:
    Yes, yes, yes. Apostrophes are like your and you’re; their, they’re, and there; and its and it’s.

    1
  20. Gustopher says:

    @CSK: Homophones are horrible. I am homophonophobic

    3
  21. CSK says:

    @An Interested Party:
    Buckley despised Trump; he thought Trump was a narcissist and a charlatan.

    1
  22. Kathy says:

    @Teve:

    Surely youre kiddin’

    2
  23. Mikey says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    a Trump administration ethics agreement

    This is possibly the most oxymoronic phrase ever written in the English–or any other–language.

    2
  24. CSK says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Oh, Trump will say he’s met-Hyde once or twice, but doesn’t really know him.

    1
  25. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    Russian PM Medvedev has resigned in order to make room for Putin to change the Constitution and stay in power past 2024.
    In related news; Trump got his first erection, without the help of medication, in 20 years.

    1
  26. Teve says:

    @Jax: and there are some instances where it’s ambiguous or personal preference. I say Bill Gates’s computer, while a person with poor taste writes Bill Gates’ computer.

    But we both want to punch people who write about Bill Gate’s computer. 😛

    4
  27. Gustopher says:
  28. Teve says:

    @Kathy: I`m not.

    1
  29. Teve says:

    @Gustopher: every time I see that word I hear it in H. Jon Benjamin‘s voice. 😛

  30. Slugger says:

    A couple of days ago, Trump said that Saudi Arabia had paid a billion dollars for the use of our troops. I have thinking about that. There are 330 million Americans. A billion dollars works out to three dollars a piece. I really can’t get very much for three dollars, but death or injury to an American soldier hurts me in a way that the price of half a glass of IPA at my local tavern doesn’t fix. Is there some way I can send my three dollars back to the Saudis to keep some kid from going there?

    3
  31. Kathy says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    I wonder why Putin just doesn’t name himself Tsar Vladimir I and be done.

    1
  32. Bill says:

    @Kurtz:

    My Calculus teacher was a hilarious bear of a man. He used to pick my grey hairs out during tests.

    My biology 2 teacher in high school was a little eccentric and well liked by his students some of who affectionately called him Uncle Danny.

    In my spy ebook last summer, I portrayed Mr Wells as a Columbia University Professor whose expertise was genetics and microbiology. His role in the story was confined to two scenes and a very slight of him in a third, but the last scene was a surprise twist at the end. I dedicated the ebook to ‘Uncle Danny’. From some internet research I did, I found out he is retired and living in North Carolina.

    BTW Kurtz, My Algebra 2 teacher was Mr. Kurtz.

    2
  33. Gustopher says:

    @Teve: “Attorneys General’s conference” makes me twitch, but I think it’s right.

    3
  34. Teve says:

    @Gustopher: On the other hand, Apple’s Air Pods Pro really grinds my gears.

  35. Teve says:

    @Gustopher: we should do it like the Italians. Conference di attorni generale. 🙂

  36. Jax says:

    @Teve: Yer killin me, small’s. Effin grammer nahtzee. 😉

    Full disclosure, I actually did see someone spell it like that once. And I don’t think it was in jest.

    1
  37. gVOR08 says:

    Only globalist elitists would care about proper use of apostrophe’s.

  38. Neil Hudelson says:

    @Gustopher:

    It would have to either be that or “Attorneys’ General Conference.” “General” is the adjective on Attorney, and the attorney(s) are the ones ‘owning’ the conference. (I think you are correct, but now I’m not sure.

    “I attended the Attorneys’ General Conference.”
    “I attended the Attorneys General’s Conference.”

    Hmm, now I’m torn.

    @Teve:
    I’m a stickler for Oxford Commas and correct apostrophe use when partnered with the letter “s.” Somewhat that’s because one’s language is clearer when these two items are used correctly (Phonetically you wouldn’t say “Joss comic book,’ you’d say “Josh-es comic book.” And of course Stalin and JFK weren’t strippers. )

    But mostly I do it because I like to feel superior.

    @gVOR08:

    Well, according to my twitter profile (@njhudelson), I am a deep state actor and elite globalist, so I guess it all makes sense now.

    BTW, I follow a few of you on twitter (Andre, Matt B., our intrepid hosts) but let me know if you have a public twitter account I should be following.

  39. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @CSK: He’s gonna have a hard time with that. Go take a look at that Fritschner tweet thread. There have to be dozens of pics of Hyde with trump, the trump crime family, and associates. He may not have been a big money donor but he was dug in like a tick.

    1
  40. Kit says:

    @Jax:

    I sometimes rephrase entire sentences to avoid having to use it!

    I sometimes do the same, but more because the spellchecker refuses to recognize a word despite my best efforts.

    3
  41. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kit: Firfox lets me check it on the internet and then add it to the dictionary once I have confirmed that my faulty memory isn’t totally broken.

    1
  42. Teve says:

    @Jax: oh yeah I didn’t make that up. Bill Gate’s computer. And it wasn’t an accident. It was over and over.

    1
  43. Kathy says:

    I’m putting off a spoiler discussion of Episode IX until I can watch it again. Between work and having a rather bad cold (my first in five years), I haven’t had the chance.

    My one observation, spoiler-free, is that whole sequel saga (eps VII through IX), feel more like one of those “complete the story” posts on a 90s internet message board, than a coherent story. Meaning I don’t think there was a story outline, but rather each episode’s writing/production team made up its own, based on what had taken place in the previous movie(s).

    On other Star Wars matters, I think there are three Admiral Thrawns: Calssic Thrawn (from the Zahn’s first Thrawn trilogy), Whitewashed Thrawn (from Zahn’s follow on prequel book “Outbound Flight”), and New Thrawn (from Zahn’s second Thrawn trilogy and the TV series “Rebels”).

    Classic Thrawn is a brilliant tactician and leader with a taste and passion for art, but utterly ruthless and focused on gaining, keeping, and exercising power.

    Whitewashed Thrawn is a brilliant tactician and leader with a taste and passion for art, but utterly ruthless and focused on protecting his people, the Chiss, from the many dangers in the galaxy.

    New Thrawn is a brilliant tactician and leader with a taste and passion for art, but utterly ruthless and focused on using the Empire as a shield for his people.

    That’s the problem in crafting an interesting, competent, compelling, and pragmatic villain: it’s hard to keep them a villain.

  44. Teve says:

    Seen on twitter:

    “What’s my ‘dream job’? Bitch I don’t dream about being employed, I dream about living in a small cottage and making soap and painting titties. Capitalism is a nightmare.”

    1
  45. CSK says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I know; I saw all the pix. But how many times has Trump denied knowing someone when there’s a ton of images of him with that person? He lies the way the rest of us breathe: reflexively.

    3
  46. Teve says:

    The irony is, the only way to save Iran is also the only way to save America—get the extreme religious conservatives out of power.

    -john fugelsang

    4
  47. Teve says:

    @CSK: he claimed he barely knew Michael Cohen. His supporters are the dumbest MFers on the planet. 😛

    3
  48. Kit says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Were I add words to my dictionary, my writing would now be a glorious near-English in which words and meanings have long since parted company.

  49. Kurtz says:

    @Neil Hudelson:

    I loathe the Oxford Comma.

  50. Jax says:

    @Kurtz: Our neighbor very kindly plowed all 3 miles of our ranch road out last night, so I am free of my snowy prison. He got himself a new attachment for his skid steer, I think he was quite enjoying himself.

    Which is good, because my kids were absolutely horrified that their Grandpa picked them up from the bus stop IN THE TRACTOR yesterday afternoon. If you ever want to “ruin” a teenager’s social life, I highly recommend it. She stomped around about it for an hour, until I finally told her to knock it off or I’d be dropping them off RIGHT IN FRONT OF THE HIGH SCHOOL in the tractor this morning. 😉

    Teens are so fun.

    4
  51. Kurtz says:

    @Teve:

    I’ve long pointed out to people that the most extreme Christians in the US have a remarkably similar ideology to extreme Islam elsewhere. The similarities far outweigh the differences.

    On the other hand, I’ve also argued that Judaism and Christianity had long, extremely violent periods early in their history. Other than a minority, that has mostlg disappeared. Islam, as the youngest of the three, may ultimately follow the same path. At some point, culture eventually starts to make religion evolve.

    1
  52. CSK says:

    @Teve: And he also says he never met any of the women he sexually assaulted.

    3
  53. Kurtz says:

    @Jax:

    I am unlikely to ever have children, so I will never get to have the joy of ruining a teenager’s life.

  54. Jax says:

    @Kurtz: It’s good fun. I have a really old pair of work boots that I keep around just in case I have to actually go INSIDE the high school while students are there. They max out her embarrassment level, I made sure to wear them when I dropped her off at the Homecoming dance. It’s not that I don’t have acceptable boots, those are just more fun!

    1
  55. Neil Hudelson says:

    @Kathy:

    “Pitch Meeting” makes a pretty good (and funny) case, that each episode’s director/writing team made it up as they went along.

    To be fair, it’s not like there were literally years to prepare.

  56. Kathy says:

    @Kurtz:

    On the other hand, I’ve also argued that Judaism and Christianity had long, extremely violent periods early in their history. Other than a minority, that has mostlg disappeared. Islam, as the youngest of the three, may ultimately follow the same path.

    I’ve heard that argument before.

    IMO, Christianity has had several violent periods. The persecution of heretics right after Constantine I legalized Christianity in the Roman Empire, the Crusades, the Inquisition, various eruptions of witch hunting (not confined to Salem), and the last were the various religious wars stemming from the Reformation. Add localized persecutions of Jews and Muslims, among others, including expulsions and forced conversions.

    At some point, culture eventually starts to make religion evolve.

    That I agree with. Christianity toned it way down once church separated from state, and once it ceased being the driving force and sole source of morality. It helped the Catholic Church lost all temporal power along with the Papal States.

    This is sorely lacking in many parts of the Muslim world, where Islam is the major or sole source not only of morality, but also of criminal and civil law.

    2
  57. Teve says:

    @CSK: and they’re all 5’s at best, and so he would never assault them.

    1
  58. Mu Yixiao says:

    @Teve:

    oh yeah I didn’t make that up. Bill Gate’s computer. And it wasn’t an accident. It was over and over.

    That’s because they were referring to the computer used in the latest DC scandal (the one involving the front of a duck and Russian supermodel.).

  59. Kathy says:

    @Neil Hudelson:

    To be fair, it’s not like there were literally years to prepare.

    True. But Lucasfilm (a division of the MouseCorp) could have 1) designated a director for all three movies, 2) designated a writing team for all three movies, 3) set an outline for the saga.

    You can get away with disjointed movies in Trek or the Marvel universe. there’s no overarching story. In Star Wars there is.

    1
  60. Teve says:
  61. Neil Hudelson says:

    @Kathy:
    Yeah, sorry I was being sarcastic. They had three years from Disney purchasing Lucasfilms to The Force Awakens to at least outline the saga. I wasn’t expecting perfection, but at least a little less improvisation.

  62. Bill says:
  63. Bill says:

    Non-Florida headline of the day-

    Yamaha warns customers not to climb into musical equipment cases after Carlos Ghosn’s escape

    I don’t think I was ever small enough to get into the box for my baritone horn that I played from Grade 5 to 12.

  64. Gustopher says:

    @Neil Hudelson: I’ve felt no need to see Rise of Skywalker, because I don’t see a through story.

    And The Last Jedi was a really good thematic ending. The fascists strike back, and even if they win, there’s a spark of hope elsewhere with broom boy.

    I hope Rise of Skywalker was all about Broom Boy, even if they had to make him literally Luke’s kid from a fling he had in Canto Blight a few years back. Sure, Luke was a crazed hermit, but he was a crazed hermit with needs.

  65. DrDaveT says:

    @Kathy:

    various eruptions of witch hunting (not confined to Salem)

    It cannot be overemphasized that the Salem witch trials were an insignificant local instance of a major global epidemic that had been going on for centuries prior to that and continued for another century-plus afterward. An estimated 40,000+ people were executed for witchcraft in Europe and North America from the 14th through 18th centuries, many of them horribly. In the annals of “systematic crimes by Christianity against humanity”, witchcraft prosecutions certainly make the top 5, along with the Crusades, pogroms, expulsion of Jews, and child molestation.

    3
  66. Mister Bluster says:

    Apostrophe – a grammatical lament by The Doubleclicks

    Gotta’ love the tribute to Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder.

    2
  67. Kathy says:

    @Gustopher:

    I have a hard time not seeing a story through to the end.

    Still no spoilers, I was satisfied with how Rey’s story ended (with some observations, but those contain spoilers).

  68. Kathy says:

    @DrDaveT:

    In “The Demon Haunted World,” Carl Sagan has a lengthy overview of how suspected “witches” were prosecuted. The methods of investigation were brutal and made permanent damage, even if the accused was acquitted (a rare occurrence).

  69. @Gustopher:

    I hope Rise of Skywalker was all about Broom Boy

    Sadly, ROS kind of trashed the Broom Boy theme.

  70. Kathy says:

    Yikes! Boeing has had its worst year in decades.

    Item: They had more cancellations than orders.

    Item: they delivered about half as many airplanes as Airbus.

    It’s worth noting that smaller, single-aisle airplanes sell at much higher numbers than larger, twin-aisle ones. Boeing’s sole remaining single-aisle jet in production is the 737 MAX. Do the math. Ok, the last of the 737 NG (next generation) family were produced last year, but that backlog is cleared. And it will take time to recover. Many orders for the MAX were cancelled.

    The MAX will sell, no question, if only because Airbus could not possibly handle all orders for new narrow body mainline planes. But it should be clear to even the most hardened bean-counters at Boeing they need a new narrow body plane. Given the misadventure with the MAX, they need a revolutionary one as well.

    It’s too early to replace the MAX, but not too early to begin a serious push to do so. Fortunately a lot of the work has been done with the 787. Namely the extensive use of composites, and the larger windows and lower-altitude, higher-moisture cabin pressurization. Plus the latest avionics, all-glass cockpit, etc.

    Developing a new type from a clean slate takes a long time, maybe as long as 12 years from pre-development to entry into service. They’d better get to it.

  71. Just nutha says:

    @An Interested Party: Possibly, but only because Trump is so vulgar–he would object to Trump as “unpresidential,” much like Mitt and others have.

    Policy? Not so much, I suspect.

  72. Teve says:

    @DrDaveT: “Witches” are still attacked and injured in several places across the globe.

    2
  73. Teve says:

    @Kathy: their poor fired CEO had to leave with a mere extra $62 million.

    1
  74. Kurtz says:

    @Kathy:

    I didn’t mean to imply that that it was a long ago transition for Christianity. I know there has been recent physical harm and psychological violence inflicted by Christian extremists. I blame the fusion of religion and politics for many of the ills we face now.

    But I think the fact remains no matter how many Jewish people and Christian people try to claim otherwise, the three Abrahamic religions are tied together. I think looking at the development of the older two can be helpful. It seems plausible that political changes must be met with theological evolution.

    As an atheist who grew up in a religious family, I get a little frustrated with some of the rhetoric and attitude of the agnostic to anti-theist community. My general attitude is to keep your religious beliefs out of politics, and I am fine with it. From my perspective, some people need religion.

    As much as I respect Sam Harris as someone a with a sincere belief in good-faith argumentation, it is clear to me that he has a glaring blind spot when it comes to the topic of Islam.

    Harris’s mistake, along with many other atheists, is assigning blame to religious people rather than political and religious leaders who use what is supposed to be considered sacred to further their political goals and/or financial gain.

    2
  75. Just nutha says:

    @Neil Hudelson: The solution is to leave the possessive out altogether–Attorneys General Conference. Still communicates that the conference is for Attorneys General.

    Nobody goes to the Washington State Teachers of English’s Conference, for example.

  76. Teve says:

    @Kurtz: Looooootttttttts of us atheists think Sam need to turn that critical mind of his inward a bit.

    2
  77. Kurtz says:

    @Teve:

    Oh definitely. He’s still a valuable voice. He also has many great guests with a variety of topics.

    He tends to be a little too much in his criticism of wokeness–his approach seems to it ends up coming from the Right Wing rather from a critique from the left side of the spectrum. This approach validates the RW argument rather helping to modify the approach of his allies.

    I think a lot of the commentariat needs to recognize that if we had a more balanced political spectrum, one that isn’t weighted toward the Right Wing, that they would likely be considered to lean conservative.

    3
  78. DrDaveT says:

    @Kurtz:

    I think a lot of the commentariat needs to recognize that if we had a more balanced political spectrum, one that isn’t weighted toward the Right Wing, that they would likely be considered to lean conservative.

    I believe that the purpose of government is to regulate markets to keep them free, internalize externalities, redress wrongs, take advantage of economies of scale, and generally promote increasing prosperity and productivity over time. On a global historical scale, that makes me center-right. In America, it puts me well left of center. To the RWNJs, it makes me a socialist.

    I really wish that communism in America hadn’t imploded and/or been stamped out. We need some real leftists to give the Republicans some perspective.

    3
  79. Kurtz says:

    seen in the comment section at Fivethirtyeight

    Eric Mills
    New sandwich in town – “THE TRUMP SPECIAL”

    Ingredients:

    Two slices of white bread (no other will do)
    Lots of baloney
    Smear with Russian dressing
    Side of very small pickle

    Bon appetit!

    1
  80. Kurtz says:

    @DrDaveT:

    Right, and that is what I mean. In that world, I could see myself at least considering to vote for a Republican, despite my personal views of their agenda. What I mean is that if there is a candidate I view as a poor fit for public office whose views I agree with, I would rather vote for someone with whom I disagree if that person takes their responsibilities seriously. As it stands now, Republicans would never let that person anywhere near a general election ballot.

    1
  81. Mister Bluster says:

    @Kurtz:..some people need religion.

    Several years ago the apartment building I lived in housed my ex and me in one unit. The landlord’s mother in another unit and his mother in law in the remaining unit. I honestly never knew which woman was which, not that it mattered. They were both good neighbors and kept to themselves.
    We could hear the one in the middle spot who had a habit of moving her furniture around at all hours of the night but it wasn’t bothersome as our bedroom was on the far end of the building and did not share a wall with her place.
    I think she was the landlord’s mom but I can’t be sure. She was probably over 80 and she kind of looked and acted like Granny on the Beverly Hillbillies. She would step out on the back stoop, make sure no one was looking, press her finger on one side of her nose and blow a booger out of the other. Sometimes I think she was aiming at our cats but I can’be sure. Once she caught me watching her do that. She just grinned and backed into the door.
    In the summer when we would come home at 3am after closing down the bars she would be sitting out side in a chair under the tree in the middle of the yard. She had a big box of photographs that she would look at over and over again.
    The only one I remember her ever showing us was her late husband the preacher. He was a portly fellow in bib overalls.
    “I sure was glad when he found Jesus.” she said. “That’s when he stopped whuppin me!”

    1
  82. Teve says:

    @Kurtz: I like many things about Sam, there are several things I agree with him completely about. He’s a little too pleased with himself and a little too harsh on some other people at times.

    1
  83. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Jax:

    He got himself a new attachment for his skid steer, I think he was quite enjoying himself.

    Skid steers are just plain fun, I don’t care what your doing. I keep trying to talk one of my “rich” farm buddies into buying one so I can “borrow” it every now and again.

    1
  84. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kurtz: It’s not very hard. I’ve ruined several teenager’s lives. It was as easy as breathing. In fact, I think that was my offense.

    2
  85. Kathy says:

    @Teve:

    Some quick research tells me Boeing’s stock has fallen about 27.3% since March 1st 2019, and the company lost therefore about $60 billion in value.

    Ok. If that merits a payoff of $62 million, I should offer Boeing a drop of only $20 billion in the same amount of time, for only $10 million in compensation total. See how much money I could save them? 😀

    1
  86. Jax says:

    @Guarneri: I can call the wonderfully nice guys in white coats for you, if you want. It’s apparent your obsession with Avenatti is getting the best of you. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hnzHtm1jhL4

  87. Kurtz says:

    @Guarneri:

    You’re like the player who scores a touchdown with 3:37 left in the 4th quarter to cut the lead to 45 and does an elaborate dance in celebration.

    2
  88. Kathy says:

    @Kurtz:

    I didn’t mean to imply that that it was a long ago transition for Christianity.

    No, but that’s the takeaway from the popular versions of this argument.

    I agree mixing politics with religion is a BIG part of the problem, though not all. Some Muslims, and specifically some Muslim-majority nations, have the same issue as China: a past when they were a great power, followed by humiliation, mistreatment, and colonization by the Western powers that overtook them.

    Ans they have a point, to some extent.

    China, though, has been getting even by industrializing, investing, doing R&D, etc. In other words, by beating the western powers at their own game of economic development.

    1
  89. An Interested Party says:

    Anyone have a vodka?

    How appropriate, especially considering the slavish devotion shown to the Russian tyrant by your lord and master…

    1
  90. wr says:

    @Kurtz: “You’re like the player who scores a touchdown with 3:37 left in the 4th quarter to cut the lead to 45 and does an elaborate dance in celebration.”

    Except that he does his touchdown dance when he’s on fourth and 30 at his own ten yard line…

    2
  91. Kurtz says:

    Some Muslims, and specifically some Muslim-majority nations, have the same issue as China: a past when they were a great power, followed by humiliation, mistreatment, and colonization by the Western powers that overtook them.

    Ans they have a point, to some extent

    Oh, this is true. I think this is part of the reason I initially added the content about Harris in my post. I had immediately recalled his correspondence with Chomsky. Sam just couldn’t get over himself enough (this goes to Teve’s last post) to realize he was way out of his depth in terms of politics and history.

    Tyrants always seem able to bring to the fore a longing for a past that never existed.

    Anyway, your posts are always highly appreciated. Thanks!

    2
  92. @Guarneri: You’re not even annoying anymore. You are, rather, just kind of sad.

    7
  93. Michael Cain says:

    @Jax:

    Teens are so fun.

    Upon exit from Arby’s after eating with your teens, grab your spouse and waltz the 30 feet across the parking lot to your car. Literally waltz — 1, 2, 3, 1, 2, 3. Total panic while they look to see if any of their friends might have seen it.

    2
  94. Jax says:

    @Michael Cain: Oh, yessss, now you’re speaking my language! I particularly like the “get in the car/slide down in the seat/face cover” from the teenager if we dare to dance AND grab a kiss before we get in. While wearing our dirty boots and breathing loudly. 😉

    The tween is usually laughing. “You guys are so dorky.”

    2
  95. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: Indeed!

    2
  96. Kathy says:

    @Kurtz:

    Tyrants always seem able to bring to the fore a longing for a past that never existed.

    That’s a good point. The last big center of power in a Muslim country was the Ottoman Empire, which finally dissolved in 1918 after WWI. At its height, it controlled just about the entire Middle East, plus the Balkans and Greece.

    The successor state to it is Turkey, which even now is poor breeding ground for terrorists and extremists, and is largely westernized in many respects.

    The Islamist’s ideal seems to be the Abassid Caliphate, which had an even greater extent than the Ottoman empire.

    Now, that map linked above tells a story. You’ll notice Turkey is not part of the Caliphate. At the time, it was the home of the Byzantine Empire, known in its time as the (Eastern) Roman Empire.

    Oh, the Abasids picked the Byzantine empire apart. Taking North Africa, Arabia, Judea, Syria, etc. But they couldn’t get to the heartland of the empire, nor past it to Europe. That fell on the Ottomans 800 years later.

    3
  97. @Kurtz:

    Tyrants always seem able to bring to the fore a longing for a past that never existed.

    That’s the hallmark of reactionary ideologies.

    5
  98. gVOR08 says:

    @Steven L. Taylor: Keeping in mind that Corey Robin, in The Reactionary Mind, makes a good case that conservatism is always reactionary.