Wednesday’s Forum

FILED UNDER: Open 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 and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. OzarkHillbilly says:

    “The more the universe seems comprehensible, the more it also seems pointless.”


    -Steven Weinberg

    When I interviewed Weinberg in 2009, he told me about the long shadow cast by that one sentence on a “pointless” universe. “I get a number of negative reactions to that statement,” he said. “Sometimes they take the form, ‘Well, why did you think it would have a point?’ Other times people say, ‘Well, this is outside the province of science, to decide whether it has a point or not.’ I agree with that. I don’t think that science can decide that there is no point; but it can certainly testify that it has failed to find one.” And he specifically criticized what used to be called “natural theology”—the idea that, as the 19th Psalm suggests, one could learn about God by studying nature. Natural theology “is now discredited; we don’t see the hand of God in nature. What conclusions you draw from that is up to you.”

    Although he never tried to hide his atheism—perhaps only Richard Dawkins and Sam Harris have been more vocal—Weinberg was sympathetic to those who yearn for a more intimate conception of God. “I think a world governed by a creator who is concerned with human beings is in many ways much more attractive than the impersonal world governed by laws of nature that have to be stated mathematically; laws that have nothing in them that indicates any special connection with human life,” he told me. To embrace science is to face the hardships of life—and death—without such comfort. “We’re going to die, and our loved ones are going to die, and it would be very nice to believe that that was not the end and that we would live beyond the grave and meet those we love again,” he said. “Living without God is not that easy. And I feel the appeal of religion in that sense.”

    And religion deserves credit for giving us “requiem masses, gothic cathedrals, wonderful poetry. And we don’t have to give that up; we can still enjoy those things, as I do. But I think I would enjoy it more if I thought it was really about something; and I don’t. It’s just beautiful poetry, and beautiful buildings, and beautiful music—but it’s not about anything.”

    4
  2. OzarkHillbilly says:

    From the “Show You” state:

    Jonathan Shorman
    @jonshorman

    NEW – A Missouri county coroner has allowed families to exclude COVID from death certificates, affecting pandemic fatality reporting

    Important reporting from @jakekincaid31, @derekkravitz, @Cameron_Barnard

    In one Missouri county, coroner excludes COVID from death certificates if family asks
    ‘I do what pleases the family,’ said Macon County Coroner Brian Hayes.
    kansascity.com

    Missouri governor pardons couple who pointed guns at racial justice activists

    The governor of Missouri has made good on his promise to pardon Mark and Patricia McCloskey, the couple who gained notoriety for pointing guns at a group of demonstrators who marched past the couple’s home in a luxury St Louis neighborhood during racial justice protests last year.

    Mike Parson, a Republican, announced on Tuesday that he had pardoned Mark McCloskey, who pleaded guilty in June to misdemeanor fourth-degree assault and was fined $750, and Patricia McCloskey, who pleaded guilty to misdemeanor harassment and was fined $2,000.
    …………………….
    The special prosecutor Richard Callahan said his investigation determined that the protesters were peaceful.

    “There was no evidence that any of them had a weapon and no one I interviewed realized they had ventured on to a private enclave,” Callahan said in a news release after the McCloskeys pleaded guilty.
    …………………………..
    “I’d do it again,” he said from the courthouse steps in downtown St Louis. “Any time the mob approaches me, I’ll do what I can to put them in imminent threat of physical injury because that’s what kept them from destroying my house and my family.”

    Because the charges were misdemeanors, the McCloskeys did not face the possibility of losing their law licenses or their rights to own firearms.

    My google fu is lacking, can’t find a statement from Parson. I am sure he would have expressed support for the right of white people to keep the darkies at bay.

  3. MarkedMan says:

    Mr. Berry graduated in May from Ohio Wesleyan University, where he received a values in action award from the Greek life community for being a “perfect role model” and for leading “the fight to dismantle fraternity stereotypes.” The university posted a Zoom video of the presentation.

    Hmm… What, exactly is meant by being a perfect role model in a frat?

    The trouble began when Mr. Berry ordered his third alcoholic beverage of the flight and brushed his empty cup against a flight attendant’s backside, according to the criminal complaint, which said that the flight attendant told him “don’t touch me.”

    Mr. Berry, who had been sitting in seat 28D, then emerged from the bathroom shirtless after spilling his drink, prompting a flight attendant to tell him that he needed to be fully dressed, the complaint said. The flight attendant helped him get a shirt out of his carry-on luggage, and Mr. Berry walked around the cabin for about 15 minutes.

    That’s when he groped the breasts of another flight attendant, who told him not to touch her and to sit down, the authorities said. In the criminal complaint, officers wrote that Mr. Berry later put his arms around the same two flight attendants and groped their breasts

    Yep. Sounds about right.

    5
  4. Jen says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    A Missouri county coroner has allowed families to exclude COVID from death certificates, affecting pandemic fatality reporting

    A public official is falsifying official reporting at the request of families.

    This is insane.

    9
  5. Teve says:

    @keatonpatti

    Showed my vaccine card to the bouncer at Medieval Times and now I’m being burned at the stake. #ThanksFauci

  6. OzarkHillbilly says:

    As if California didn’t have enough problems already, now they have Hell’s Chipmunks patrolling the campgrounds: Bubonic plague in chipmunks forces closure of top Lake Tahoe sites

    Surrounded by fires, parched by drought, and shut down by the pandemic – residents of California’s scenic South Lake Tahoe thought they’d endured everything.

    That was until this week, when the US Forest Service announced it was closing several popular sites after discovering bubonic plague in the chipmunk population.

    The federal agency announced this week that “based on positive plague tests” in the rodent population around hiking areas, it would close the well-trafficked Taylor Creek Visitor Center and nearby Kiva Beach through Friday.

    2
  7. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Jen: This is insane.

    Perfectly normal for Misery.

    1
  8. CSK says:

    @Jen: @OzarkHillbilly:

    What in God’s name is the point of this? Is this yet another way of “owning the libs”?

  9. Sleeping Dog says:

    @MarkedMan:

    Hmm… What, exactly is meant by being a perfect role model in a frat?

    Obviously it doesn’t include the ability to hold your liquor.

  10. CSK says:

    NASCAR will be requiring masks in all enclosed areas, regardless of vax status. That ought to go over really well.

    3
  11. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Tamyra Mensah-Stock became the second American woman to win a wrestling gold medal with victory in the 68kg freestyle category on Tuesday.
    …………………..
    “I wanted to give my mom $30,000 so she can get a food truck. It’s her dream,” she said. “My mom’s getting her food truck! She’s going to have a little cooking business. She can cook really, really, really well – barbecue. I don’t eat it because I’m a pescatarian now.”

    3
  12. gVOR08 says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had an underlying truth. – Umberto Ecco

    4
  13. Teve says:

    @CSK: i think it’s more like a refusal to admit that their own stupidity got them kilt.

    5
  14. Teve says:

    @gVOR08: Nice try, Umberto, but the big reveal in The Name of the Rose sucked and you know it.

    2
  15. Mu Yixiao says:

    @Teve:

    The only thing I remember about the Name of the Rose is the scene with River Phoenix and the witch. 🙂

    1
  16. charon says:

    Sociopath Ron:

    https://twitter.com/karinanniebell/status/1422675648145936385

    I’d bet my Harvard EdD that DeSantis is on the spectrum. He’s decided herd immunity is it. And nothing is going to change his mind. Everything in his life points to ASD, including angry meltdowns when confronted with things that challenge his *belief*. We’re in real trouble.

    1
  17. grumpy realist says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I don’t think that this is anything new. I seem to remember reading in one of the Time-Life science series of books back in the 70s that one of the remaining reservoirs of bubonic plague in the US was in squirrels. (They mentioned squirrels being tested near the Grand Canyon, IIRC.)

    1
  18. Teve says:

    @Mu Yixiao: never saw the movie. That woulda been better than wasting my life reading those 535 pages.

  19. Teve says:
  20. Teve says:
  21. Teve says:

    Website Run by ‘Dumbest Man on the Internet’ Helped Fuel Trump’s Effort to Cancel Democracy

    https://www.thedailybeast.com/how-trumps-effort-to-cancel-democracy-was-fueled-by-gateway-pundit

    1
  22. Kathy says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    I could claim I’ve had that same view for decades. Purpose requires a conscious mind, and the universe as a whole has none. We can romanticize as Sagan, and the Minbari, did, and say we’re the universe’s menas to know itself. It sounds lovely, but does the universe know anything?

    IMO the really controversial metaphysical opinion coming out of physics, and biology as well, these days is that there is no such thing as free will, and there can’t be. That it’s all a result of impersonal chemical reactions, fluid dynamics, and quantum mechanics.

  23. CSK says:
  24. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @CSK: Covid is the new AIDS. If one dies of it one must have been a most grievous sinner.

  25. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @grumpy realist: It’s not new at all, perfectly normal for it to appear in rodent populations from time to time. Still, I couldn’t resist the image of demon chipmunks.

    ETA people don’t understand my loathing of the little bastards but they aren’t stealing those folks’ tomatoes.

    3
  26. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kathy: Many years ago I read that the “meaning of life was a life of meaning”. Suited me just fine, I found some things that gave meaning to my life and that is what I have done.

    4
  27. Teve says:

    @Kathy: @OzarkHillbilly:

    Many years ago I read a statement from an accomplished scientist who I later found out was a bigoted asshole—not unusual for someone born in 1928. His stupid racism doesn’t contaminate this particular thought, though, and I like the sentiment:

    “I don’t think we’re for anything, we’re just products of evolution. You can say ‘Gee, your life must be pretty bleak if you don’t think there’s a purpose’ but I’m anticipating a good lunch.” –James Watson

  28. CSK says:

    @Teve:

    I’ll have you know that “articles” from The Gateway Pundit have been posted 2244 times at Lucianne.com. It’s one of their primary sources for reliable news!

    2
  29. Teve says:

    @CSK: Heavens to Betsy

  30. charon says:

    and then DeSantis just goes ahead and does what he wants anyway. And it works – he’s super popular.

    ?? I wonder.

    They couldn’t, and it’s only now that many people are noticing just how amazing Trump’s accomplishments were in contrast to President *’s unending series of failures.

    What is someone going to say to DeSantis as Florida leads the recovery out of the pandemic paranoia? “Sure, there was no tsunami of death when you took the lead in eschewing flu hajibs, but you still should have made people wrap a hanky around their mugs forever because of reasons?”

    They really are in an alternate reality.

    Posted: May 24, 2021 12:01 AM

    Oh! Well that has really aged well.

    Thanx for the linky, entertaining.

    https://townhall.com/columnists/kurtschlichter/2021/05/24/bring-on-the-aspergers-republicans-n2589897

  31. Kathy says:

    Harford made a rather big deal about H.R. McMaster’s doings in Iraq (and again declaring success prematurely). Still, he got me intrigued, and now I’ve placed McMaster’s analysis of the Vietnam war on my reading list.

  32. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @CSK: 2244 times

    Hmmmmm… You know what 2×4 and 2×4 gives you, don’t you? 88, which just happens to be the most fascist number of them all!

    1
  33. CSK says:

    @Teve:
    The hilarious thing about Kurt Schlichter is that he was virulently anti-Trump prior to Trump becoming the candidate in 2016, and then he did a total 180 and became Trump’s most ardent fan.

  34. Teve says:

    @charon: i just scanned the comments. My conclusion is that they were beamed in from the planet Zorblax 9.

    1
  35. CSK says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    88 = Heil Hitler!

  36. Michael Cain says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Plague is endemic in the rodent population of the American West — from time to time I bicycle through areas with signs saying that rodents in the area have tested positive for plague. People do occasionally catch it (on average between one and two reported cases per year here in Colorado). A 10-year-old girl died of plague in southwest Colorado last month, the first death in several years.

    The Strategic National Stockpile holds some millions of doses of antibiotics specific to plague. If the SNS experience during the early part of the US Covid outbreak is indicative, most of those doses are past their expiration dates.

  37. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Michael Cain: Yes, but as I noted @OzarkHillbilly, Demon Chipmunks.

  38. Kylopod says:

    @CSK: A madlib we’ve all seen many times:

    “The hilarious thing about _________ is that s/he was virulently anti-Trump prior to Trump becoming the candidate in 2016, and then s/he did a total 180 and became Trump’s most ardent fan.”

    6
  39. CSK says:

    @Kylopod:
    I can’t dispute that.

    What’s also amusing to me is how quickly Schlichter’s readers forgot that he was once anti-Trump. They didn’t extend that courtesy to J.D. Vance.

  40. Teve says:
  41. wr says:

    @CSK: “They didn’t extend that courtesy to J.D. Vance.”

    Quick — name one courtesy you think SHOULD be extended to JD Vance.

    (Tarring and feathering doesn’t count…)

    3
  42. Mister Bluster says:

    Rocket 88
    Jackie Brenston and his Delta Cats
    1951

    V-8 motor and this modern design
    Black convertible top and the girls don’t mind
    Sportin’ with me, ridin’ all around town for joy
    Blow your horn, rocket, blow your horn

    Apparently this cut is by Ike Turner and his Kings of Rhythm

  43. Kathy says:

    I’m watching Avenue 5, which is supposed to be a Sci-fi comedy.

    It’s had some funny moments, but little Sci-fi beyond the setting. It feels more like satire of capitalism, and of one Orange Ass in particular*. The big selling point seems to be Hugh Laurie, formerly House M.D., playing the captain. This is not quite true (spoiler alert).

    Also, it seems there is one character, Billie, who’s rational and knows what’s going on, and she’s not given much weight in the developing disaster thus far.

    *The Judd Vodka pretty much sealed that.

  44. Kylopod says:

    @CSK:

    What’s also amusing to me is how quickly Schlichter’s readers forgot that he was once anti-Trump. They didn’t extend that courtesy to J.D. Vance.

    I call this the Rick Perry Oops Principle. In 2015, Ted Cruz during one of the debates made pretty much the same error as Perry four years earlier–he said he was going to axe several federal departments, and he forgot one of them. Unlike Perry, he never said “oops,” he just confidently rambled through. So hardly anyone noticed but a few pundits.

    Vance’s mistake wasn’t being a former Trump critic, it was his pathetic attempts to scrub that history in plain sight.

    As a juggler and a member of Toastmasters (a public speaking organization), I can tell you that one thing performers of all kinds are trained how to do is recover from an error on stage, so that you have the audience thinking it wasn’t an error at all but part of the act. You see late-night hosts do this all the time when they flub lines. Rick Perry and J.D. Vance failed that test.

  45. Teve says:

    @Teve: didn’t know this:

    The influential conservative commentator Rod Dreher relocated to Budapest earlier this year on a fellowship after touting Hungary as a kind of safe space to host right-wing Americans desperate to escape the “hegemonic” liberalism taking root in their homeland. In his defense of Orban, Dreher espoused the merits of Hungary’s “soft authoritarianism” over the “soft totalitarianism” of the E.U. project.

    2
  46. Scott says:

    Today, Facebook reminded me that it is my daughter’s birthday. Except it’s not. Way back when they were establishing their Facebook accounts, I made them use a different birthday to thwart identity theft. They were irritated at first but now they think it is very funny to receive all kinds of birthday greetings not on their birthday.

    My POV on personal data, identity theft, etc. is not to try to keep Big Data from getting information about me but instead I work to corrupt the data by giving incorrect information where it doesn’t matter. Not sure it works but you have to do something.

    4
  47. CSK says:

    @wr:
    Oh, none whatsoever. I never could stand Vance, even back when he was fashionable. It just interests me that some former Trump-haters are forgiven their sins, while others aren’t. There must be a common denominator for the ones whose records get expunged, but I haven’t found it yet.

  48. Kylopod says:

    @Teve:

    In his defense of Orban, Dreher espoused the merits of Hungary’s “soft authoritarianism” over the “soft totalitarianism” of the E.U. project.

    He actually used those phrases? Even I’m a little surprised he so openly admits to defending an authoritarian regime. The right is plenty authoritarian these days, but most of the time they’re quick to label it as something else, and constantly claim they’re the stalwart defenders of liberty against tyranny. I give Dreher a couple points for at least some self-awareness.

  49. Scott says:

    @Teve: Rod can’t escape his personal demons by running away. Though he keeps trying.

    2
  50. Mister Bluster says:

    @Scott:..corrupt the data

    As my sister suggested always list your mothers maiden name as eggplant.

    1
  51. Teve says:

    @Kathy: the first season was…okay. There’s supposed to be a Season 2 but the pandemic interfered. There was, in Season 1, a parallel with Covid. No spoilers, I’m referring to seven passengers and an airlock.

  52. Kylopod says:

    @CSK: Even in 2015-6, I was very reluctant to praise anti-Trump Republicans, largely because their rationale was often so shallow and self-serving. A lot of it was that they thought he couldn’t win, and that even if he did win he’d be unreliable as a conservative. There was shockingly little pushback against his being a racist authoritarian.

    1
  53. Scott says:

    @Teve: @Kylopod: Good grief. That goes back to the Reagan years where Jeanne Kirkpatrick always made a distinction between authoritarianism and totalitarianism to justify supporting murderous right wing thugs in Central American instead of murderous left wing thugs in Central America.

  54. Kathy says:

    @Scott:

    True, but few Republicans at the time seemed to have wanted an American Pinochet, Mubarak, Hussein, or Marcos to run things in DC.

    1
  55. Teve says:

    A $5 Million Fine for Classroom Discussions on Race? In Tennessee, This Is the New Reality

    Tennessee aims to levy fines starting at $1 million and rising to $5 million on school districts each time one of their teachers is found to have “knowingly violated” state restrictions on classroom discussions about systemic racism, white privilege, and sexism, according to guidance proposed by the state’s department of education late last week.
    Teachers could also be disciplined or lose their licenses for teaching that the United States is inherently racist or sexist or making a student feel “guilt or anguish” because of past actions committed by their race or sex.
    The guidance received immediate backlash from advocates of students of color in the state who say it would have a disproportionate impact on already underfunded, majority Black and Latino school districts.

    “There’s also a fear for young students of color who are in districts that are majority white and now there’s no protection for them and their white student peers in learning about truthful history and racism,” said Cardell Orrin, the executive director of Stand for Children Tennessee, a group that advocates for historically disenfranchised students.

    The new guidance lays out the complaint process that a current student, parent, or employee can initiate against a district if they believe an educator has violated the law, but it does not elaborate on what specifically school districts are banned from teaching, as many teacher advocates had hoped. Instead, it cites 11 broad concepts that teachers can’t teach or use materials to promote. For example, students can’t be told that they are “inherently privileged, racist, sexist, or oppressive, whether consciously or subconsciously,” or bear responsibility for past actions committed by members of their race or sex. Experts have called the language of these laws vague.
    Tennessee’s department of education will allow the public to weigh in on the rules until Wednesday, Aug. 11, according to the Tennessean.
    Tennessee is one of 11 states this year that have drastically curtailed the ways that districts can fight systemic and individual acts of racism, homophobia, and sexism in the classroom and how teachers can talk to students about the ways America’s government has historically discriminated against minorities. Another 16 states have similar bills that are set to be considered during next year’s legislative session.

    Advocates of the bills argue that public school districts are indoctrinating students with teachers’ political agendas and, through their equity initiatives, giving students of color an unfair advantage over white students.
    Opponents of the bills argue that school districts can no longer ignore longstanding academic disparities between white students and students of color and are obligated to teach all students a more complete and nuanced version of America’s racist past.
    In most instances, the laws spell out which anti-racist initiatives districts are no longer allowed to practice and what “divisive” concepts teachers are no longer allowed to discuss, but state legislatures left room for state departments of education to determine how to enforce the laws.

    Several lawyers Education Week has spoken to have expressed fear that state departments will make the laws more stringent through the rules.

    Tennessee’s Department of Education is the second in the country to release additional guidance on how its censorship law will be enforced, following Oklahoma’s state department, which released guidance in mid-July.
    Oklahoma educators could have their teaching licenses suspended or revoked and schools could lose accreditation if an investigation finds evidence that they taught about racism and sexism in ways that violated the law.
    Oklahoma will also allow parents the right to inspect curriculum, instructional materials, classroom assignments, and lesson plans to “ensure compliance.”
    Tennessee’s 11-page document outlines the process of filing a complaint alleging the violation of the law and the consequences that teachers might face if the district or state determines that they used prohibited materials or discussed a banned concept. For the most part, school districts will be in charge of investigating a complaint and deciding a course of action. In instances where the accuser or the accused disagree with the district’s decision, the state’s commissioner of education will have the final say.
    Like Oklahoma’s rules, Tennessee’s also require school districts to investigate complaints if parents or students claim that an educator violated the law.
    Parents, students or district employees can file complaints up to 30 days after the violation allegedly occurred, according to the rules. After a district receives the complaint, it has 60 days to investigate. If it finds the allegations to be true, it must start remedial action such as removing the reference material cited in the complaint from the curriculum or taking “disciplinary or licensure action against a teacher,” the rules say.

    Either the complainant or person the complaint accused of violating the law can appeal the district’s decision within 15 days to the state department’s review committee. If the committee finds that a prohibited concept was taught, it can file a report to the commissioner, who will determine if the allegation is substantiated.
    “It could be worse. It could’ve been that [complaints] go straight to the state and the state decides to take money away,” said Orrin. “This puts enough layers of local control in the process that it makes a lot of sense to allow teachers to teach what they need to teach, and figure out where complaints are coming from and then start to address it from there.”
    If the department then determines that a violation occurred, it can withhold $1 million or 2 percent of the district’s state funding, whichever is less. The fines ramp up with each violation, amounting to a penalty of $5 million or 10 percent of state funding for the fifth time a district is determined to be in violation of state law.
    Tennessee’s state department has already started to receive complaints of violations of the law.

    In June, the Williamson County chapter of the national group Moms for Liberty, a group advocating for “parental rights,” wrote to Education Commissioner Penny Schwinn objecting to a lesson about Ruby Bridges, the first Black child to desegregate an elementary school in Louisiana, which they said made white students in the class feel uncomfortable.
    “Targeting elementary age children with daily lessons on fighting past injustices as if they were occurring in present day violates Tennessee law and will sow the seeds of racial strife, neo-racism (and) neo-segregation,” Robin Steenman, the chair of the Williamson County chapter of Moms for Liberty wrote in the complaint.

    1
  56. CSK says:

    @Kylopod:
    The pushback I recall most (and with which I agreed then and agree now) is that Trump was not only a boob and a churl, but that he was a complete phony in terms of his supposed love for the working classes. He despises them. Always has, always will.

    The reason for this–and HarvardLaw92 concurred with me, vehemently–is that Trump is a failed social climber. It’s the engine that drives his life. Ever since he was in his 20s, he’s desperately wanted to be part of the Manhattan haut monde, but he had no idea of how to break into even the lowest ranks of Society. Everything he did, he did wrong: gold-plating crap, bragging about his sexual prowess, etc. All that is anathema to real movers and shakers, never mind real society.

    His entire life has been a vengeance trip against the people who scorn him as a low-rent vulgarian.

    10
  57. Michael Reynolds says:

    My wife bought our first e-car, a Volvo XC40 Recharge. It’s a huge pain in the ass because the garage is too narrow for both our cars, so we have to swap them back and forth in order to charge the Volvo. Silver Lake at sufficient altitude is pretty crime free, but still a rag top left out at the curb is tempting fate.

    And Jesus but Volvo has some dyslexic engineers. The stupid little shifter goes back for Drive and forward for Reverse. Counter-intuitive much? And of course there’s the impossible to use while moving touch screen, so that if you’re driving alone you can’t crank the AC until you come to a stop light. For all time: fuck touch screens in cars. I want the sound system and the AC switches – physical switches – on my fukkin steering wheel, not buried in a menu.

    That said, it’s a good-looking vehicle, and oh my, the torque!

    4
  58. Kylopod says:

    @CSK:

    but that he was a complete phony in terms of his supposed love for the working classes. He despises them. Always has, always will.

    Another group he despises is white Southerners. He despises PoC more, but he thinks Southern whites are all dumb rednecks. I’m not remotely exaggerating. This has come out in private conversations such as his mockery of Jeff Sessions or the recording with the Georgia SoS where he expressed surprise that any Georgia native who moved to a different state would move back–he gave the distinct impression that he thinks Georgia is a giant backwoods.

    3
  59. Teve says:

    @Michael Reynolds: physical controls are often superior to touch screens. Which is why EVs have steering wheels, of course.

    2
  60. Monala says:

    Anyone else follow the Ohio-11 special election to fill HUD Secretary Marcia Fudge’s old congressional seat? In the Democratic primary former Bernie Sanders surrogate Nina Turner (originally from Cleveland, but hadn’t lived there in some time) ran against Cuyahoga County Democratic Party chair Shontel Brown. Turner raised twice as much money and had endorsements from Sanders, AOC, Cornell West, the Cleveland Plain Dealer, etc. Brown was endorsed by Hillary Clinton, Jim Clyburn, Marcia Fudge, and local clergy. Turner campaigned for Jill Stein in 2016, and called Joe Biden a “half bowl of shit” in 2020.

    Quite a few Twitter leftists took this match as an encapsulation of the center left/hard left conflicts among Democrats. Anyway, Brown won, decisively. In her concession speech, Turner not only didn’t congratulate Brown, she said, “I am going to work hard to ensure that something like this doesn’t happen to another progressive candidate again. We didn’t lose this race, evil money manipulated and maligned this election.”

    In case anyone missed it, Ohio-11 is not only a 55% Black district, it also has a very large Jewish population. Many of Turner’s followers are now blatantly making anti Semitic comments on Twitter.

    Oh yes, and the Young Turks are saying this was the “establishment” fighting against a Black woman gaining power (note: Brown is also a Black woman).

    5
  61. Michael Grant says:

    @Teve:
    It’s one of several reasons we rejected Tesla. (Touch screen obsession, lack of Apple CarPlay, shitty fit and finish, interior like a dentist’s waiting room. . .and Elon Musk). Touch screen controls are safety hazards, just not ones the IIHS has bothered to consider yet. They’re solving a problem that does not exist.

    1
  62. CSK says:

    @Kylopod:
    I know you’re not exaggerating. But the Trumpiest states are mostly all in the south. Those southerners, however, seem to have a remarkable capacity to elide this kniowledge, because they still adore him. He’s rallying in Alabama this month.

    The power of cognitive dissonance, I suppose.

    3
  63. Mu Yixiao says:

    @Kylopod:

    I can tell you that one thing performers of all kinds are trained how to do is recover from an error on stage, so that you have the audience thinking it wasn’t an error at all but part of the act.

    I was watching the premier run of The Ride Down Mount Morgan (Henry Miller) in the west end, and there’s a scene were Tom Conti was talking to his wife and seriously flubbed the line. He gave an exasperated gesture looked at the actress and said “See! You’ve got me so in love with you I can’t even talk straight!” and then went on with his lines.

    I think I may have been the only one in the audience that caught it, based on the reaction. 🙂

    3
  64. Kathy says:

    It’s out in the open now. WHO wants a moratorium on booster shots until at least 10% of every country0s population is vaccinated.

    I think 10% is very low. Otherwise, I’d agree to distribute vaccines as widely as possible to keep more variants form developing. I’ve been saying this form the start. And shame on all the covidiots in the US and other countries with widely available vaccines who choose not to take them.

    1
  65. Monala says:

    What happens when you realize your stupid political decisions are hurting people:

    Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson on Tuesday officially called for a special legislative session to lift a ban on school mask mandates.

    The session will focus on Act 1002, a law the Republican governor signed earlier this year that prohibits state and local mask mandates. Hutchinson said he wants to amend the law to allow schools to decide their own mask policies. He said he’s concerned about children under age 12 who aren’t old enough to get vaccinated.

    link

    1
  66. Jen says:

    @Monala: Yes, I followed it (and cannot tell you how many times my mind read “Tina Turner” instead of “Nina Turner”).

    It’s really depressing that people seem to have lost the art of losing gracefully.

    3
  67. Jay L Gischer says:

    I just want to represent for people on the spectrum for a moment. I know several. I’ve worked with more. They are not sociopaths. They have trouble understanding why other people do what they do sometimes, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t affect them. These are different things.

    I have not spent much time observing DeSantis. I have no opinion about whether he is either on the spectrum or a sociopath. We have observed that certain kinds of callous and cruel behavior can advance a politician with a group of voters.

    If you insult someone on the spectrum, they will become angry. If they are challenged, they will become energetic and respond to the challenge, like most people. But the ones I’ve had the pleasure of dealing with will respond very positively to new information – often more positively than people who aren’t on the spectrum.

    People on the spectrum are often abrasive. Quite a lot. This is not the same thing as being cruel, because they are usually unaware of the sort of unspoken rules and associations that other people can have, and they don’t have those associations themselves.

    Here’s a case in point. One man I know is very, very good at math (I know, quelle suprise!). He told me once how he really liked how, as his class progressed, people would start coming to him for help. I told him that I got it, it makes you feel connected, it makes you feel of value, and powerful, and that feels good. AND, I would never say that out loud because of the likelihood that people would understand you as bragging and setting yourself apart and above them.

    His response was, “Oh, I didn’t know that! Thanks”

    Please do not confound being on the spectrum with being sociopathic.

    8
  68. Mu Yixiao says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    The stupid little shifter goes back for Drive and forward for Reverse. Counter-intuitive much?

    My Kia is the same. And yes… I think it’s idiotic, too. I miss my stick. 🙁

    1
  69. gVOR08 says:

    @Kylopod: Admits to defending an authoritarian regime? He’s little short of shouting it from the rooftops. For Dreher, failing to enforce his view of morality on everyone is the worst form of tyranny.

    1
  70. KM says:

    @Monala:
    One of the few blessings we’ve had regarding COVID is it seems to not strike children down the way it does adults. It helps frame the disease as “the old people problem” and let parents feel more comfortable with denials since the kiddies would be alright. Now? Now we’re gonna start seeing children in ICU and dying because that is who’s left for the virus to get and mutate in. Vaxxed Grandma will be fine, little Betty in second grade will be hospitalized.

    Schools are germ factories already but adding COVID into the mix means a school is likely to see several hospitalization among its population and even a death or two. Parents are going to hear how grade 4 lost a student while grade 8 has someone on a vent, fighting to breath. I wonder how PTA meetings will go when some anti-vaxxer ends up with a huge hospital bill (or funeral one) and starts screaming the school didn’t protect their child enough.

    3
  71. Michael Reynolds says:

    @Monala:
    Wow. Ohio-11 is rated D+32. Progressives can’t win anywhere that isn’t heavily Democratic, but D+32? With all that support from progs? And she lost by six points, FFS.

    The core progressive electoral argument was that they could find common ground along class lines and are thus more likely to win general elections. Remember that nonsense? What’s their argument now? That they’re popular in places where Democrats could run a chimpanzee and win, except not Ohio?

    I like Bernie, and Warren and AOC, but that bubble has popped. Defund has turned into Democratic mayors calling for more cops. CRT has led directly to the outlawing of history classes in quite a few school districts and states. ‘Socialism’ is wildly popular among Seven Sisters graduates and no one else. And everyone is sick to death of being scolded and lectured by humorless, experience-free, eternally-dissatisfied twits with meaningless degrees from elite universities.

    We have a razor-thin margin in the House thanks to progressives, and we’re set up to lose that. But still they’ll be whining that they didn’t get all the presents they wanted.

    5
  72. KM says:

    @gVOR08:
    Conservatism is by nature authoritarian-adjacent. For the yelling about freedom and individualism, they believe hierarchies are the correct state of being with some folks just naturally being “better” and thus rising to the top, controlling and influencing certain things. It’s usually phrased as a “natural order” if verbalized at all but the idea that there’s a pyramid structure to life is inherent to all their thoughts. That’s why it’s the American Dream (anyone can do it!), not the American Promise (99.9% won’t because there can be only one and it ain’t you).

    They are far, far more comfortable with the idea of an authoritarian who’s in power because he’s the Alpha and enforce his Will is natural rather than a bureaucracy or state government where someone no better or even lesser can boss them around. Totalitarianism implies impersonal state control and anyone can thus serve as a representative or face of the state; they can be “falsely” uplifted in the natural order by the state and could use that to “cheat” the system.
    Authoritarianism is obey your betters because they are the natural Boss of You. Not surprised Dreher’s aware of what it is since the trend in conservatism lately is fight egalitarianism / “socialism” by embracing their ideological roots. Why do we oppose X? Because X is trying to cut the line and the head of the line needs to step in and push them back where they were.

    3
  73. Scott says:

    @Michael Reynolds: Yep. Regardless of ideology, the vast majority want paved roads and sidewalks. They all need to restudy Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. As a country, we’ve been moving down that hierarchy, not up.

    1
  74. BugManDan says:

    @Jay L Gischer: Thanks for saying this Jay. My daughter is on spectrum and while she has to work at getting social cues, she would never knowingly hurt anyone. Further, she has no problem changing her mind if shown why she was wrong.

    5
  75. BugManDan says:
  76. Gustopher says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    Remember that nonsense? What’s their argument now? That they’re popular in places where Democrats could run a chimpanzee and win, except not Ohio?

    It might be just a shitty candidate.

    The Bernie wing of the progressives is often populated by shitheads — it’s what makes them special compared to Warren, AOC, etc. The “revolutionaries” versus those who want to work within the system.

    Part of my problem with Bernie’s presidential run was that he surrounds himself with a lot of shitty people, and was going to be a shitty president because of that.

    This sounds like the “no true Scottsman” argument, but really all I mean is candidates matter. A local party leader is going to know the people of the district better than someone swooping in from the national level, and that someone really seems like a shithead in this case.

    5
  77. Jax says:

    @Jen: Ha! Same here, even way back when Bernie was campaigning and somebody would say Nina Turner, I read it as Tina Turner and wondered why in the world she had gotten into politics. 😛

    1
  78. Kylopod says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    We have a razor-thin margin in the House thanks to progressives

    You keep saying this. I’d like to know if you have any evidence beyond your intuition.

    First of all, I think the idea that Dems were on their way to a landslide was always a mirage caused by inaccurate polling. Due to the pandemic, the Dems did very little on-the-ground campaigning, while the Republicans largely ignored the safety measures, which may have been unwise from a health perspective but led to a turnout differential that escaped the detection of pollsters.

    Second, note that very few prominent Dems were advocating Defund the Police; even Bernie Sanders distanced himself from it. Of course the GOP kept screaming about how all Dems supported it (and I suspect this even backfired in some cases, such as in the Georgia runoffs), but that’s just the standard GOP playbook for decades–find something marginal on the left and pretend it’s the official position of the Democratic Party. Maybe it turned off a few swing voters or motivated greater turnout among the party faithful, but if it wasn’t Defund, it would have been something else. It always is.

    I also think (maybe because you’re a political junkie) you’re overestimating how many people were even aware of Defund. Don’t forget that it was merely part of a larger narrative on the right in which they tried to create backlash against the BLM protests through fear of riots. Yet how effective was this tactic? Look at the two states you’d expect to be the center of this backlash if it existed: Minnesota and Oregon. Despite Trump having very nearly flipped MN in 2016 and despite actively campaigning there in 2020, Biden did just about as well as Obama in 2012. And Biden won Oregon by a 16-point margin, the best showing since 2008 and second-best since 1964.

    Finally, isn’t this argument unfalsifiable? The Dems didn’t run Bernie, they ran the centrist. Almost all the losses in the House were of centrist candidates (naturally, since those are the ones most likely to be in swing districts). I know your explanation is that they were dragged down by the left, but that just goes to show how flexible this hypothesis really is, and the GOP’s capacity to get voters to believe a candidate is advocating something they most certainly aren’t is probably baked in at this point.

    12
  79. Beth says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    ETA people don’t understand my loathing of the little bastards but they aren’t stealing those folks’ tomatoes.

    So, a couple of years ago I was at my friend Paul’s house after his mom died to comfort him and his Aunt. Another one of his friends that I had never met came over too. So, Paul starts telling us that he’s being confronted every morning by a Chimpmunk that will stand on his front step and just scream at him. Their conflict escalated to the point where he would just scream back at the chipmunk. They would do this to each other every day like some sort of weird inter-species anger release.

    Out of nowhere, the Other Friend turns to us and says, “Chipmunks don’t exist. They are made up.” There is dead silence as the three of us turn to her and Paul says, “What?” Then in a perfectly serious tone, she goes on to tell us in detail that chipmunks don’t in fact exist. Paul’s aunt and I were crying with laugher as Paul mentally tried to wrap his brain around her honest insistence that there is no such thing as a chipmunk.

    2
  80. charon says:

    Culture war setbacks are making Conservatives grumpy and alienated.

    Long piece, really good stuff (linkies) in it:

    https://www.vox.com/22600500/olympics-conservatives-simone-biles-anti-american

    1
  81. charon says:

    From link above:

    In a May podcast, Hillsdale College lecturer and former Trump administration official Michael Anton chatted with entrepreneur Curtis Yarvin — a self-described monarchist who wants to appoint a Silicon Valley CEO king of America — about their shared desire to topple what Anton terms the American “regime.”

    During the episode, Yarvin muses about how an American strongman — whom he alternatively calls “Caesar” and, more honestly, “Trump” — could seize authoritarian control of the US government by turning the National Guard and FBI into his personal stormtroopers. Critic Damon Linker identifies this politics, which meets with little pushback from Anton, as “broadly coterminous with fascism” — and it’s hard to see where he’s wrong. The pining for a strongman stems from disgust with an America Yarvin and Anton no longer recognize, a country they describe as a “theocratic oligarchy” controlled by a cadre of progressive “priests.”

    In the American Mind, Claremont’s blog, writer Glenn Elmers declares that “most people living in the United States today — certainly more than half — are not Americans in any meaningful sense of the term.” If Trump voters and conservatives do not band together and wage “a sort of counter-revolution” against these “citizen-aliens,” then “the victory of progressive tyranny will be assured.”

    Elmers intimates that violence will be a part of this struggle. “Learn some useful skills, stay healthy, and get strong,” he advises his fellow conservatives. “Strong people are harder to kill.”

    And an essay in the Claremont Review of Books by scholar Angelo Codevilla describes a country whose government is clinging to “an illusion of legitimacy” after “a half-century of Progressive rule’s abuse” has demolished American society.

    During his initial campaign and presidency, Trump tapped into this sentiment by explicitly dividing the country into good Americans that supported him and his people and bad ones that did not. He found that there was a market in his party for a style of politics that eschewed unifying bromides and high-minded patriotism in favor of division and cruelty; he made it okay to say openly that you just hated the other side and didn’t want to share the country with them anymore.

    Trump was all the permission that many in the conservative movement needed to finally express what it really felt about the American experiment. After his defeat, the sense of marginalization that animated his original campaign has come roaring back — a feeling of utter alienation manifesting in vicious attacks on the country’s symbols and government.

    “For most parts of the right, there was this idea that you could still redeem the country — that you could reverse these long-term trends by political organizing, electing conservatives to political office, etc.,” Walsh, the UVA scholar, tells me. “Today, there is this move away from even the trappings of the American democratic tradition — and I think that is linked to the broader sense that this country can no longer be redeemed.”

    1
  82. EddieInCA says:

    @Michael Reynolds: I texted you a bit ago.

    To the rest of the group. I’m interested in an E-Car. Leaning towards Tesla Model 3, just for ease of purchase, range, and price. But I’d rather not buy a Tesla if someone can convince me another E-car is better, under $45k all in.

    Help.

    1
  83. CSK says:

    Trump isn’t encouraging his followers to get vaccinated because…it would help Joe Biden.

    http://www.rawstory.com/trump-vaccine-2654424663/

  84. KM says:

    On the changing of death certificate thing, that’s actually not that unusual for conservatives or traditionalists hiding a “shameful” death. Go look up old records and you see a surprising amount of self-inflicted “hunting accidents”. No, no – they didn’t commit suicide, it was a hunting accident that happened in the living room! People didn’t die of AIDS but rather a lot of pneumonia or sudden cancer. OD’s get passed off as heart attacks and even some of the more “embarrassing” ​cancers get hidden under “organ failure”.

    Any halfway decent historian or genealogist in a few years will see a death date in 2019-2021 listed as pneumonia in certain areas and will add an asterisk.

    3
  85. Beth says:

    @KM:

    I’m a fan of the euphemism “accidental misadventure”. No No no, Uncle Bill wasn’t high on poppers when he drove that port-o-potty out on to the highway in an attempt to have sex with the freeway. He was just an adventurous spirt who had a little misadventure.

    3
  86. Gustopher says:

    @Beth:

    Paul’s aunt and I were crying with laugher as Paul mentally tried to wrap his brain around her honest insistence that there is no such thing as a chipmunk.

    Is the argument that chipmunks are too cute to exist? Because that it a reasonable argument.

    Chipmunks are, pound-for-pound, the cutest rodents.

    A capybara is cuter — roughly 10 times as cute, but weighs roughly 100 times as much, so it doesn’t do as well pound-for-pound.

    2
  87. Monala says:

    @marcorubio

    Stop with the mask fetish

    If you want to wear a mask as a courtesy to those around you or because you are in no mood to get even a little sick go ahead

    If you want your kids to mask in school that’s your right

    But we aren’t going to mask our way out of this

    @karinanniebell

    Replying to @marcorubio

    Oh, and just so everyone knows? Marco’s kids are attending a private school that is requiring masks of all students. His kids will be fine. He just wants to endanger yours.

    7
  88. Teve says:

    Even DuckDuckGo can’t find anything with “Chipmunks don’t exist” as the search string.

    1
  89. flat earth luddite says:

    Please let me out of the cooler, Herr Kommandant!

  90. Beth says:

    @Gustopher:

    No, nothing so mundane. She literally, in the correct use of that term, believes that chipmunks don’t exist. Period. Chipmunks are simply a shared delusion that have no basis in reality.

    It was one of the most surreal things I have ever experienced.

    1
  91. charon says:

    https://twitter.com/ABC/status/1422651311120596994

    JUST IN: Nearly 72,000 children in the U.S. tested positive for COVID-19 last week—a massive jump from the approximately 39,000 cases among kids one week earlier.

    1
  92. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @CSK:

    100%. He’s the guy from Queens – the son of a slumlord – who’ll forever have that chip on his shoulder. He thought simply having money was enough to gain entry into Manhattan society – the real one, not the television one – and found out pretty quickly that one is basically born into that. Those folks all grew up together, attended the same schools, have intermarried since the dawn of time, and their world is insular (and understated ) as hell. He showed up with his outre behavior and gold plated everything thinking he belonged and quickly got doors slammed in his face along with some derisive laughter. He’s never gotten over it. His entire life has been a tantrum devoted to “I’ll show you all”.

    Why do you think he bought the biggest house in Palm Beach (and promptly renovated it to resemble a bordello)?

    6
  93. Kylopod says:

    @HarvardLaw92: John Mulaney eons ago described Trump as a hobo’s idea of a rich person. I think one of the reasons people like me once assumed Trump to be doing some kind of performance art–I literally couldn’t believe any human being could behave the way he does in earnest–was that he’s always seemed like a grotesque parody, a walking cartoon character who, if he never existed and was actually just a character in a movie or novel, critics would mock as unrealistic and badly written. I’m not sure if my mistake was being too cynical or not cynical enough.

    1
  94. MarkedMan says:

    @Kylopod: I’ve sorta followed Trump for four decades. The thing people have the most trouble realizing is just how stupid the man is. Dumb as a rock. They assume a rich college graduate has to have some base level of intelligence, that he can’t possibly be as dumb as he seems. But they are wrong.

    1
  95. CSK says:

    @HarvardLaw92:
    I assume that the bordello look is Trump’s idea of “classy.”

    One of the things he wanted to do when he bought the Eastern Shuttle (and put it out of business a few years later, curse him) was have gold and marble fixtures in the airplane toilets. The aeronautical engineers had to convince him that the added weight would make the jets virtually unflyable.

    But again, this was just another example of how lamentably off-kilter Trump’s idea of class was. Nobody, especially the so-called “top people,” gave a good goddam about gold fixtures in the toilets. They just wanted to get to Boston or NY or DC as quickly as possible.

  96. CSK says:

    @MarkedMan:
    Wharton wasn’t nearly as selective in Trump’s day as it is now, and even with that, Fred Trump had to call in some markers to get Donny admitted. And I’m pretty sure TFG paid someone to write his papers and take his exams.

    And of course Prof. William Kelley of the marketing dept. called Trump “the dumbest goddam student I ever had.”

    2
  97. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Kylopod:

    To be fair, he grew up in Queens. Jamaica Estates. Not exactly Bellerose, but not exactly Forest Hills either. His earliest and only real role model was a self-made slumlord who was pretty garish in his own right (Cadillacs, pockets squares, cigars – Fred Trump was himself sort of a cartoonish version of what a poor guy thinks a rich guy acts like.). He spent his entire like looking across the East River at where he believed that he belonged. The people there he wanted to impress, to tell him he belonged, were always going to be horrified at that. He showed up in Manhattan with two outs and two strikes on his card thinking he was going to hit a Grand Slam. He went over like a lead balloon.

    Somebody with less ego would have quietly shut up, watched and learned, and slowly inched his way in to the extent that is even possible. His ego, which has always been his greatest strength and his greatest weakness, wouldn’t allow it, so he turned the volume up to 12. He’d make his own society, and it would be so much better than theirs. He’d show them.

    In a word, it was Alva Vanderbilt deciding to throw her own ball since Mrs. Astor wouldn’t send an invitation to hers, except it didn’t work. She was a whole lot richer than he’ll ever be – she had the ammunition to make it work. All he’s ever really had was imagery and excess, and that was his problem from the outset. More of that didn’t make it better; it made it worse, but he is incapable of admitting that he’s wrong, about anything.

    3
  98. EddieInCA says:

    @CSK: @HarvardLaw92: @HarvardLaw92:

    Purely an anecdote.

    My cousin does IT work in NYC for a small, exclusive, company that has a very, very high end clientele with much discretion. Over the years, he’s had to work at the home of some of the richest guys in the world…. and Donald Trump. One week about 7 years ago, he had to do work at Paul Allen’s NYC Penthouse on 66th Street. The job took him two days, and it was about a $5K job for him. Mr. Allen was never there during that time. But when he finished the job, he was given a check for the full amount, thanked, and sent off on his way. A few days later, he had to do some work at FG’s place in Trump Tower. It was a one day job and his company charged $1400 for the job. At the end of the job, my cousin was told, “Until Mr. Trump personally approves the job, there won’t be payment.” Three days later, the company gets a message from a Trump flunky telling them that the work was shoddy, and he wasn’t going to pay. When asked what was wrong with the job, the person has no answer other than Mr. Trump isn’t satisfied. The boss offers to come “fix” the job, but is told that won’t be necessary. After a few weeks of back and forth, the company filed against the Trump LLC in small claims court for payment. Several weeks later, on the day before the court appearance, Trump’s company paid the $1400, delivered by messenger. My cousin’s boss was out the filing fee as the point was now moot. But he got paid. They never took another Trump job, even though many were requested.

    Real billionaires don’t sweat $5000, much less $1400.

    10
  99. Kylopod says:

    @MarkedMan: Back in 2015 when he first emerged as a candidate, I thought to myself multiple times, “If this were a movie, Trump would be the next president. But we know that’s not going to happen, because life isn’t a movie.”

    In movies, whenever characters insist something will never happen, you know it will. The way everyone was talking about Trump, it reminded me a lot of Vizzini shouting “Inconceivable!” Trump will never actually enter the race. Trump will drop out before the end of the year. Trump will drop out before Iowa. Trump won’t win any states. Trump will be overtaken by other Republicans. Trump will be stopped at the convention. Trump will be kicked off the ticket. Trump will drop out himself. Trump will never win the election.

    After he won, you probably can understand how bothered I was when I kept hearing people saying he’ll never win reelection. At that point it was like they were trying to jinx it.

    And of course the conventional wisdom rapidly did a perfect 180, now insisting Trump possessed some kind of hidden genius all the smartypants neglected to see. And that’s another thing that comes from the movies, the ancient genre about unkempt, undisciplined outsiders doing the impossible and showing up all the hoity toity doubters.

    I’m of two minds on this. I do think Trump possesses certain skills that he used to his advantage. But that doesn’t mean he didn’t also benefit from being a kind of stooge to outside forces (particularly Russia) and that even then the outcome depended to some degree on dumb luck.

    And yes, I still think that in a general sense, he’s a f’in moron.

  100. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @CSK:

    Well, you’ve seen the apartment. To be fair, MMP was pretty eccentric herself, and the place wasn’t exactly low-key to begin with, but he inevitably made it worse / more over the top. David Rockefeller (who carried the same ratty umbrella for years and was the most modest, inconspicuous yet graceful man I have ever had the privilege to know) flatly despised him, and once quietly called the apartment “A two-bit whore’s idea of Disneyland”. I still chuckle when I remember that.

    He couldn’t have been more out of place if he’d wandered into the Knickerbocker naked with a tea cozy on his head.

    2
  101. JohnSF says:

    @Beth:
    “Chipmunks don’t exist. They are made up.”
    May have a point, I’ve never seen one round here.
    (Looks out window at rainy Worcestershire)

    And opposums? Obviously fake.
    As for raccoons, come on, they’re wearing masks!

    1
  102. Kylopod says:

    @JohnSF: Being from the Eastern US, I’ve seen chipmunks. I’m not so sure about rhinos, though. The only time I’ve seen one was in a zoo, and that was years ago so it could be the Mandela effect.

  103. Gustopher says:

    @Kathy:

    WHO wants a moratorium on booster shots until at least 10% of every country’s population is vaccinated.

    Maintaining support in the wealthy countries for spending money to vaccinate everyone else in the world is going to require the availability of booster shots in the wealthy countries. How much of conservative push-back is “someone is getting something I’m not?”

    We might even need to give people boosters for this reason even if it was medically unnecessary.

    Sure, the far-right is already opposed to vaccines for themselves (they might support “mass human trials” in the less wealthy and darker skinned nations), but the medium-right is going to have to be on board.

    1
  104. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @EddieInCA:

    You’d be surprised (or probably not) at how just about everyone who has been anywhere near him has stories like that to tell. He gets that from his father, who was famously cheap. Fred Trump was so tightfisted, he squeaked when he walked. A guy worth millions who watered down paint, made up his own peculiar sort of roach spray for his buildings rather than buy it, and spent his evenings walking around construction sites picking up stray nails so they could be reused. Hard as we may try, I don’t think any of us really escape from our parents.

    2
  105. Gustopher says:

    @CSK:

    One of the things he wanted to do when he bought the Eastern Shuttle (and put it out of business a few years later, curse him) was have gold and marble fixtures in the airplane toilets. The aeronautical engineers had to convince him that the added weight would make the jets virtually unflyable.

    How heavy could the gold and marble really be? The bathrooms are tiny, and a thin marble vaneer and gold plating should be almost nothing. Sure, it’s heavier than formica and aluminum, but it’s all a matter of trade-offs.

    Maybe remove two rows of seats if you need to make up the weight, and add leg-room to the luxury. People would actually like that.

  106. dazedandconfused says:

    Can’t see Trump as a failed social climber. If that had been his goal he would have learned to sound like Manhattan society when he talks. Nope, he talks like a professional wrestler, and participates in their shows, something no Manhattan society person would do. He would also have developed some sort of social network of friends, even if they were a class apart from traditional high-society, but he has no true friends at all. Like most narcissists, to him people are things to manipulate, not get close to.

    I would defer to his niece’s opinions. He’s always been a frightened little boy, frightened of being poor, living in abject terror of being anything less than wealthy, because his daddy wouldn’t love him anymore, and he witnessed his father disown his brother. His father made his mother little more than a name and a face to him. Nothing there either. To Trump the only value in women is in their ability to confer status unto himself by means of their beauty and sexual attractiveness.

    He does not seek to be a part of high society, but he probably imagines them to be envious.

    1
  107. Gustopher says:

    @Beth:

    No, nothing so mundane. She literally, in the correct use of that term, believes that chipmunks don’t exist. Period. Chipmunks are simply a shared delusion that have no basis in reality.

    Plato’s shadows on the cave wall, but only for chipmunks. Got it. The rest of us are just the cave wall.

  108. wr says:

    @Teve: ” No spoilers, I’m referring to seven passengers and an airlock.”

    My memory is that the airlock bit made me laugh. My other memory is that it came in the last episode and it was the first time I’d laughed in the whole season.

  109. wr says:

    @HarvardLaw92: “Not exactly Bellerose, but not exactly Forest Hills either.”

    Actually contemplating a move to Forest Hills next year, but can’t tell from this sentence if it’s the better or worse comparison here…

  110. Teve says:

    @HarvardLaw92: in a spat between Trump, and the Upper East Side, I’d find them both insufferable, and root for injuries.

    1
  111. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @CSK: Fortunately, the stands don’t have walls around them. Since this only protects the crews and race course staff, it shouldn’t be a big issue. On the other hand, I won’t be surprised to be proven wrong.

    ETA: WA! I won the Edit Button contest today and got a button without even asking for it. Yippeeeeeeee! Yaaahhhooooooooooooooo!

    2
  112. CSK says:

    @EddieInCA:
    The number of contractors who got stiffed by Trump must by now exceed the population of a medium-sized city.

    1
  113. Teve says:

    @Kylopod: i doubt Nelson Mandela existed, we just think he did because of the Mandela Effect.

    4
  114. Kylopod says:

    @Teve: Given the nonexistence of the Berenstein Bears series, anything’s possible.

    1
  115. Mikey says:

    A Texas GOP official named Scott Apley has died, age 45. He leaves behind a wife and infant child.

    He was a vocal opponent of pretty much every COVID-19 preventive measure, and especially of the vaccines. He died of COVID-19, a fact conspicuous by its absence in the Texas GOP chairman’s announcement of his passing.

    “I didn’t think leopards would eat HIS face,” sobs wife of man who served in the Leopards Eating People’s Faces Party.

  116. Teve says:

    @Gustopher: I watched a video one time about how furniture for commercial planes are made. They go to serious lengths to make things as lightweight as possible. Like they weren’t even making the cabinets out of particleboard, they were making them out of hollow particleboard.

    A few ounces isn’t a lot, but push it through the air at 550 mph for a million miles and the jet fuel adds up.

    3
  117. Kathy says:

    @Gustopher:

    I think right now it’s more a matter of supply. There isn’t enough of it to go around, and offering booster shots to the fully vaccinated simply concentrates more doses in higher income countries.

  118. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Teve: I don’t think so. People on Zorblax 9 are pretty able to stay focused on a topic. Not like this at all. (Though it may be a problem in translation.)

    ETA: WA!!!!!! Two in a row! This thread must be special.

  119. CSK says:

    @wr:
    Forest Hills is nice: liberal politics, and all the amenities such as good restaurants, good schools, parks, shopping, etc.

  120. Teve says:

    @wr: it was not terribly funny, I was surprised to discover it had been renewed.

    BTW, I’m 3 episodes into season 2 of Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet, and it’s even better than season 1. That show is making me literally laugh out loud.

  121. Kylopod says:

    @Mikey: Conservative commentator Charlie Kirk, who’s 27, claims to not have gotten the vaccine.

    Could be lying, but I imagine if he did it would come out, which is why I assume most of the Fox people are just hemming and hawing when the question is raised.

    1
  122. Teve says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: the Town Hall commenters were focussed on two things: Obama was the stupidest President in history, and Trump was a literal genius.

  123. Kathy says:

    @Gustopher:
    @Teve:

    It’s a matter of a few grams being flown over and over and over again, every day, for years. Knowing the Ass, he would have meant actual marble, not marble veneer. Slabs of marble are really heavy.

    There’s an anecdote in aviation about an American Airlines CEO who boasted of having saved the company $40,000 a year in fuel costs in the 70s, by ordering one olive per salad be removed in all servings.

    That’s not much, even accounting for inflation and much higher oil prices, but multiply that by every little thing that has mass (meaning every little thing*), which can be done away with or reduced in weight.

    *Photons fly free.

    2
  124. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Scott: I was going to ask about where you find conservatives opposed to racist authoritarianism, and now I don’t have to. Thanks! 😀

    ETA: Woot woot woot! Three for three!!!!

  125. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @wr:

    Much so the better one, IMO. FH is a very nice, livable area, and Forest Park is great. I think you’d probably be very happy there.

  126. Kathy says:

    @Teve:

    I’ve a working hypothesis: comedy shows without a laugh track seem less funny.

  127. CSK says:

    @dazedandconfused:
    You said it yourself: Trump seeks status. And status is conferred by acceptance by “the best people,” among other things. Of course Trump is a failed social climber.

    And Mary Trump is probably quite correct in her analysis. Both things can be true.

    4
  128. Teve says:

    @Kathy: that would explain why they’re so pervasive. Mythic Quest doesn’t have one and I don’t think it would work, but it’s intensely funny without it.

  129. Kylopod says:

    @Kathy: Somebody did a Youtube video a while back showing a scene from The Departed with a laugh track added. I found it a rather interesting experiment. I don’t particularly remember laughing the first time I saw the film, even though it has some of Scorsese’s trademark dry humor; maybe I chuckled a few times. I didn’t laugh during this sitcom-ized version, either; however, it did seem to clarify for me what was maybe intended to be amusing.

    Of course, I’ve also had an easier time laughing while watching a movie in a theater, because other people laugh and it becomes kind of contagious. (I did see The Departed the first time in the theater, but it was so long ago I can’t remember my response, other than that I loved the film.) But I have also gone into uncontrollable laughter while watching something alone with no laugh track, so I can’t say (as some people do) that laughter is purely a social response. There was a moment in a Family Guy once where I laughed so hard I missed most of the rest of the episode.

    1
  130. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Beth: I was going to ask what they are if they’re not chipmunks. Being delusions answers that question. Thanks!

  131. Mu Yixiao says:

    Proof that Chipmunks exist.

    It’s the End of Days! Edit Buttons fall from the Heavens!

  132. Mister Bluster says:

    So it’s ‘bucks or bust! WiFi options have been reduced again today.
    My first choice haunt, Panera, where I have a Coffee Club subscription, the equivalent of 33cents/day for all the mud I can drink, is shut down except for drive through…again. Since there are no local or state restrictions on food service establishments I can only assume the closure is the result of continuing staffing problems. The dining room was open for regular hours (7am-10pm) yesterday after closing early at 3 pm or so for a while. They have reinstituted a mandatory mask policy for all customers and help regardless of vaccination status after a few weeks of allowing those who are vaccinated to be mask free.
    Classes begin at Sleepytown U in 12 days. I have already seen U-Hauls arriving and cars and trucks pulling trailers full of the valuable personal possessions of students who will hopefully need jobs fixing up a Pepperoni Flatbed Pizza or a Strawberry Banana Smoothie.
    My first alternate WiFi spot, McDonald’s (85cents senior coffee free refills) abruptly shut down their dining rooms Monday after opening early summer. They don’t even bother trying to make customers wear masks inside they just lock the doors. No Big Mac for you unless you drive thru!
    So Starbuck’s is my new favorite place. Small Pike Place Roast $2.51 tax inc. No senior discount but a refill is 56cents and the WiFi works all the time. Unlike Panera there is no sign on the door about masks. I can see some staff using them and others not. And like every place I go in the summer the air conditioning is set to North Pole below Zero regardless if the temp outside is 102deg. f or 82deg. f like it is today. Some times I wear my mask at these places while I’m sitting at the table just to keep my nose from freezing and snapping off like a dead twig.
    I am sporting my mask every where I go now since the number of weekly Covid cases has increased from 5, week ending June 26 to 147, week ending July 31 here in Jackson County IL.
    One of the stops on my Carbondale Times delivery route is the local pawn shop. They have a “Masks Required for Entry” sign on the door and sheets of clear plastic hanging from the ceiling dividing the help from the customers. I always wore my mask when I entered the place. For two weeks in a row on Friday when I went to deliver the paper there was a closed sign on the door. When I stopped by last Friday I asked the guy “Were you on vacation.”
    “No” he said “We both got that Covid.” (His wife works there too.). “We didn’t get it here. I got it from my other job.”
    I have no idea how he knows that.
    “It wasn’t too bad but I almost had to go to the hospital.”
    “Were you vaccinated?” I asked.
    “No, no that’s no good. I’m not going to do that”
    So I got out of there as quickly as I could. He is one of our advertisers so I ran this all by the General Manager and she said that I could leave the paper outside the door of the storefront.
    This guy and his wife are nice folks but I see no reason to risk my health for someone’s stupidity.

    4
  133. gVOR08 says:

    @Kathy:

    *Photons fly free.

    ROFLMAO. Very good.

    And you can’t just remodel a plane’s bathroom. Everything’s got to be certified. Gold plate the existing fixtures maybe, but you have to prove the marble slab won’t come loose in a crash and fly through the cabin.

    3
  134. Kathy says:

    @Teve:
    @Kylopod:

    I find movies like Airplane! far funnier in theaters than on TV, largely due to the contagious laughter involved.

    Animated shows don’t use laugh tracks, yet I laugh a lot watching Futurama or The Simpsons. Less so at very funny shows like The Good Place (but then I found the ethical questions and story line more rewarding).

    So maybe I should amend the hypothesis to “live action comedies with a laugh track seem funnier.”

  135. wr says:

    @Teve: “BTW, I’m 3 episodes into season 2 of Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet, and it’s even better than season 1. ”

    I go back and forth on the two seasons. I thought season one was funnier, but season two manages to find real depth in the characters…

  136. wr says:

    @HarvardLaw92: Thanks!

    Oddly, I just learned from my mother that my father lived in FH as a child. I had only known about the giant apartment overlooking Central Park, but that must have been later, after my grandfather’s business really took off…

    1
  137. Kathy says:

    @gVOR08:

    There’s that. Lots of gear on the plane is there for safety reasons, and everything must conform to flight safety standards.

  138. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Teve: They must post the comments last to first. Most of the comments I read were about how incompetent Bush 43 was because he isn’t at all like De Santos.

  139. Kylopod says:

    @Kathy:

    Animated shows don’t use laugh tracks

    Well, the godfather of animated sitcoms, The Flintstones, did use a laugh track, though The Simpsons established the no-laugh-track rule for the genre in the modern age. I’m trying to think what it would be like with one, and it just seems weird to me, maybe because it would undercut the show’s cynical perspective. After all, it was partly making fun of the classic live-action sitcoms.

  140. Teve says:

    @wr: the actress who plays Poppy Li flew from Australia to LA once a year to do auditions, and after many unsuccessful years, had decided to give up. Mythic Quest was to be her final Sayonara! audition, and then she got it, and is funny as all hell.

  141. dazedandconfused says:

    @CSK:
    My quibble is the focusing on one group of people. People aren’t really people to a malignant narcissist, they are closer to being things. The trappings Trump surrounds himself indicate his ego is as stoked by the adoration of a pro wrestling fan as it would be by the adoration of a high society person.

    As a hypothetical, if it was all about vengeance or status with the Manhattan crowd, if he ever got from them it his behavior would change. I confidently predict it would not.

  142. dazedandconfused says:

    @Kathy:

    Just in case, have you read “Fate is the Hunter”? Gann’s autobiography of the early days of air transport. Most pilots consider it a masterpiece.

  143. Kathy says:

    @Kylopod:

    I’m sure they’ve used one now and then when they portray The Simpsons as a TV show, like the Behind the Laughter episode.

    1
  144. Teve says:

    @Kathy: that’s such a great episode.

    Homer: Fame was like a drug. But what was even more like a drug, were the drugs.

    1
  145. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @wr:

    Honestly, I love the city around the park, but given the choice between the two, I would probably choose FH to live in . Especially down around Greenway N & S. Fairly wide streets. Large, beautifully maintained historic homes, and TONS of trees. You’re not far from GCP & Queens Blvd, so everything is pretty convenient. The Tennis Center and Citi Field (Mets!) is an easy drive. Lots of interesting places to eat. Idyllic little world unto itself. Can’t speak highly enough about it.

  146. Teve says:

    I was shocked a few minutes ago. I just discovered that there is a group of Cuomo admirers who find him sexy.

    I’m not exactly Paul Newman, but Andrew Cuomo is powerful ugly.

    1
  147. Kylopod says:

    @Teve: I love Randy Rainbow, but this has not aged well.

  148. Teve says:

    @Kylopod: (barfing emoji)

  149. CSK says:

    @dazedandconfused:
    I think Trump’s ego is stoked by the adoration of the rally crowds because he has to settle for those crumbs; he can’t get the adoration of the “top people,” as he would put it.

    And you’re forgetting that Trump is very easily manipulated by his own need for adoration. If you told him he was the handsomest, smartest, most virile specimen of manhood on the planet, he’d believe you, even if you were laughing in his face while you said it.

    His great wish is to score a flattering profile in the NY Times. He’d kill for that. And the NY Times would immediately become, in his estimation, the greatest newspaper of all time.

    2
  150. CSK says:

    @Teve:
    If one is sufficiently deluded to have the hots for Cuomo, one might describe him as “craggy.”

    2
  151. Teve says:

    I find Elon Musk entertaining. I’ve read dozens of interviews and a few books about him and his companies. At times he’s technically brilliant. And sometimes he’s a demented lunatic:

    Elon Musk didn’t want Tesla’s Model Y to have a steering wheel so engineers developed the car behind his back, according to a new book

    He’s lucky they ignored him, it likely would have sunk Tesla.

    1
  152. MarkedMan says:

    @Gustopher: My recollection was that the sum total weight of all the changes he wanted (not just the bathrooms) would have meant that they would have to reduce the number of seats. The margins were already small so Trump’s “business plan” was to charge twice as much per seat, which people would gladly pay because everything was so classy.

  153. MarkedMan says:

    @Kathy: Brooklyn 99 (no laugh track) is about the only half hour comedy I watch. So – data point: 100% of the half hour comedies worth watching have no laugh track.

  154. MarkedMan says:

    @Teve: Love her, love her character. Love the way the characters all seem to be stereotypes but with a “yeah, but what if someone was really like that? How would that play out?” twist.

  155. Kathy says:

    @Teve:

    I remember reading about a car in the 50s or 60s, surprisingly not the Ford Edsel, that used something like a couple of dials rather than a steering wheel. I don’t recall which car it was.

    @MarkedMan:

    Experience has shown people would rather become self-loading cargo in exchange for low fares.

  156. CSK says:

    @MarkedMan:
    The Eastern Shuttle offered a low cost, reliable flight that got you where you wanted to go.

    Nobody wanted “classy” for a trip that lasted only 40 minutes. Even–maybe especially–classy people.

  157. Kathy says:

    @dazedandconfused:

    Damn, that sounds interesting. My to-read list just keeps growing.

  158. Teve says:

    Just added Fate is the Hunter to my Goodreads list.

  159. grumpy realist says:

    @MarkedMan: There was an article I ran across some time back, which pointed out (with pictures) that modern autocrats invariably build the same sort of buildings with the same interior design as what they consider “classy”. All of them. Trump, Gaddafi, Hussein. The writer didn’t attach a name to the style but “Russian bordello” is how I would describe it.

    1
  160. Mikey says:

    With the age of damn-near-everything-streaming, my wife and I have been discovering comedies we never watched when they were in first run.

    Most recently we’ve been bingeing “Community,” which I don’t think we’d even heard of when it was running, and it ran for 110 episodes.

    For first-run shows we’ve been watching “Wellington Paranormal” which is a mockumentary that follows, “Cops” style, two utterly oblivious police officers around Wellington, New Zealand, as they encounter demons, werewolves, vampires, etc. It’s hilarious.

    And it sprung from the same comic minds that created “What We Do in the Shadows,” which is even funnier. There’s an episode where one of the vampires encounters a vampire from his past (played by none other than Mark Hamill) and has to go into hiding. He transforms into “Jackie Daytona, real human bartender” by…well, you’d have to see it but it’s extremely silly in a very funny way.

    Anyway, those are my comedy recommendations for today.

    1
  161. Mikey says:

    Memorial Healthcare System in Broward County FL is suspending all elective surgeries because they don’t have the nursing staff or the oxygen to spare. Too many COVID patients are causing a shortage of both.

    1
  162. Teve says:

    @therecount

    Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL), whose state is experiencing record COVID hospitalizations, to President Biden:

    “Why don’t you do your job? Why don’t you get this border secure? And until you do that, I don’t wanna hear a blip about COVID from you, thank you.”

    “Officer, I noticed you’ve failed to catch last week’s burglar over in Stony Heights. Well, until you do, I don’t want to hear any more of this garbage about my “bloody trunk” and “missing wife”, is that clear?”

    1
  163. Teve says:

    @grumpy realist: Louis XIV with an uncontrolled gilding fetish?

  164. EddieInCA says:

    @HarvardLaw92: @wr:

    I grew up on Roosevelt Avenue and 108th in Corona. FH is where we went to “to be fancy”, because Corona and Flushing back then weren’t too cool. The restaurants, movie theatres, shops, etc, were all better than Corona and Flushing. Not much has changed, although the Chinese food in Flushing is now amazing!

    2
  165. Teve says:

    @Mikey: Memorial Healthcare has 48 locations. That’s major.

  166. Kathy says:

    Well, this is interesting: Mexico is suing gun manufacturers in the US

    It strikes me as a little too late. there are already millions of guns loose on the streets. Stopping more from coming in would be good, but it won’t take away those already in. A better idea would be to press the US to end the “war on drugs.” The drugs won.

    1
  167. dazedandconfused says:

    @CSK:
    That anybody who expresses approval of him can fairly easily manipulate him is precisely why I quibble with the theory it’s all about impressing some Manhattan snobs, actually. His is, IMO, a greater problem and his niece laid out the root causes. The aspect of his wishing to impress the snobs is but a symptom.

    1
  168. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @EddieInCA:

    That’s a pretty cool neighborhood too though. 7 train is right there (Mets!) and all those funky little shops / restaurants up and down Roosevelt are pretty sweet IMO. I can’t remember the name of the place, but some of the best Mexican food I’ve ever eaten was down there, right off of Roosevelt. It was so good … (and now I’m hungry for Mexican food … 😐 )

  169. DrDaveT says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    For all time: fuck touch screens in cars.

    They have to be a deliberate prank — no company run by adults has human factors engineers who are that utterly clueless. You might as well force the side mirrors to retract any time someone activates a turn signal.

    1
  170. Teve says:

    A GOP official from Texas who regularly espoused anti-vaccine and anti-mask views online has died from COVID-19, five days after posting a meme on Facebook questioning the wisdom of getting inoculated against COVID.

    Dickinson City Council member and State Republican Executive Committee member H. Scott Apley, 45, died in a local hospital around 3 a.m. Wednesday morning, according to a GoFundMe page set up to help Apley’s family with expenses. He was admitted to the facility in Galveston on Sunday with “pneumonia-like symptoms,” and was hooked up to a ventilator as his condition worsened. His wife was also infected, the family said.

    “He leaves behind his wife, Melissa, who is COVID positive, as well as their infant son Reid,” according to the fundraiser, which has so far raised almost $15,000 of its $30,000 goal. “Your donations are greatly appreciated and will help the family as they get through this difficult period.”

    “My heart is beyond broken for his family,” Dickinson Mayor Sean Skipworth wrote in a Facebook post. “Scott was a new father and that makes this loss especially tragic.”

    Radio Host Who Regrets Mocking Vaccines Is ‘Fighting for His Life’

    Texas Republican Party Chairman Matt Rinaldi said in a statement, “Please join me in lifting the Apley family up in prayer. We will miss Scott deeply but find comfort knowing he is at peace in the arms of our Savior.” The announcement did not mention the fact that Apley’s death was COVID-related.

    Apley is a staunch conservative and devout Christian. But based on his social media activity, Apley didn’t believe COVID was going to affect him or his family.

    In May, Apley posted an invitation for a “mask burning” being held at a bar in Cincinnati, commenting, “I wish I lived in the area!” A couple of weeks earlier, he posted a news article about giveaways and incentives meant to encourage people to get vaccinated, writing, “Disgusting.” Apley also railed against so-called vaccine passports, which restrict high-risk activities, such as indoor dining, to the fully vaccinated. Recently, he suggested that mask mandates in Germany were akin to Nazism. And when former Baltimore health commissioner Leana Wen celebrated good news this spring about the Pfizer vaccine’s efficacy, a seemingly outraged Apley called her “an absolute enemy of a free people.”

    https://www.yahoo.com/entertainment/texas-gop-official-mocked-covid-213828504.html

  171. Kathy says:

    @Teve:

    I wonder how a virus gets so attracted to hubris.

    On a side note, something odd: I get a “bad request” error when trying to access OTB in Chrome, but it works well if I use Edge.

    It worked on Chrome all day long until a few minutes ago.

  172. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Teve: I would encourage this notion among all Dreher’s fellow travelers.

  173. Beth says:

    @Gustopher:

    Thanks for that comment about Plato’s cave. I had forgotten about that and spent some time waiting for my Dr. reading about that. Seriously though, in that situation I don’t think any of us really know who was the philosopher and who was the prisoner.

    @Mu Yixiao:

    That is amazing. I wish I could get any pet to do that.

    In other news, Dr says my face is healing well and he gave me the go ahead to start scheduling round two. So, if the insurance company is willing and the Covid don’t rise, in December I’ll have my jaw shaved down and my nose sculpted into something less grotesque. Dr seemed quite excited to work on this beak.

    3
  174. Sleeping Dog says:

    @Kathy:

    That’s weird, MS licensed some Chrome code from Google to use as the core of Edge.

    1
  175. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Mikey: Does Wellington get better in subsequent episodes? I’m asking because the first episode seemed “meh” to me. I’ve seen that particular skit several times in different settings. It seemed perfunctory to me.

  176. EddieInCA says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: @Teve:

    I posted this to Dreher’s site. It’s still in moderation:

    I’ve been to Hungary. Several times.

    You and Tucker have been promoting Orban for his anti-wokeness, yet you’re not paying attention to what’s actually happening with average Hungarians. Here are a few inconvenient facts for you:

    1. Orban’s “renationalization” has led to an economy with real incomes substantially lower than it’s neighboring countries.

    2. For all the talk of national pride. Hungary is losing more people to other countries than it’s neighbors, and has a net outflow. Soon Hungary will need the immigrants it is working so hard to keep out. In 2019 alone, the Hungarian exodus to the UK reached 109,000. That’s up from 77,000 in 2018. In Germany, there are 200,000 Hungarians in 2020, up from 142,000 in 2018.

    3. Orban is pushing for Hungarian women to stay home and have lots of Hungarian babies, yet the Hungarian birth rate trails godless countries like Sweden, France and Denmark.

    4. For a supposed “Christian Democracy”, less than 20% of Hungarians self-Identify as very religious. despite 62% calling themselves Catholic. The country has 286 religions with 150 of them having less than 100 members. A full 18% identify as non-believers, with only 2% saying they’re atheists.

    5. Like Trump, Orban has sided with Russia, China, and Belarus, instead of his supposed allies, and has crapped all over NATO and the EU. In June of this year, Hungary blocked a UN statement that was to criticize China over it’s treatment of it’s Hong Kong citizens. Hungary sides with China every chance it gets.

    6. The grotesque corruption, which you seem to shrug off, is worse than any of this neighboring countries.

    6. Orban has degraded the democracy in Hungary the same way people like Carlson (and you) are attempting to do here in the states. Your positions are minority positions. You want to impose your beliefs on the majority. Not going to end well for you.

    I have a hard time understanding why someone like you, a religious conservative, is willing to team up with people teamed with the Chinese. It makes no sense whatsoever.

    6
  177. Mikey says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: It does get better. Give the next episode a watch. There are aliens.

  178. Kylopod says:

    @Kathy:

    On a side note, something odd: I get a “bad request” error when trying to access OTB in Chrome, but it works well if I use Edge.

    I’ve been having that problem for over a year. Either I have to clean out the cache, or just wait for it to pass (which typically takes a few weeks). But then it eventually happens again.

    It only does it on my old desktop computer, but not my newer laptop–so far anyway. And I haven’t had it on Firefox either, or Safari on my phone.

  179. Teve says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: from your lips, to Rod’s Bronze-age genital-obsessed sky monster.

    1
  180. Teve says:

    @EddieInCA: though he tries to hide it, you can often glimpse Rod exulting in ‘the Libs are complaining about me! Ha-ha they suck.”

    It’s childish, but that’s a modern conservative for you.

    (Excellent post to Dreher’s site, btw)

  181. Teve says:

    https://www.cnn.com/2021/07/29/health/covid-cognitive-decline-alzheimers/index.html

    Covid-19 linked to cognitive decline, acceleration of Alzheimer’s-like symptoms, research finds

    Are y’all prepared for a world where Trumpers have gotten significantly dumber than they are now?

    2
  182. gVOR08 says:

    @EddieInCA: Excellent. Dreher needs to be hit up aside the head with the reality of Hungary. But based on personal experience, I wouldn’t bet on your comment ever coming out of moderation.

    1
  183. Kathy says:

    @Teve:

    SARS-CoV-2 claims trump was like that when it got there.

    3
  184. Kathy says:

    @Kylopod:

    It was with the work desktop, which I’m sure is screwed up six different ways with corporate IT policies.

  185. Kylopod says:

    @Kathy: My desktop computer where this happens is an ancient Windows 7 model.