Posted by Christopher Johnson | Tuesday, October 11th, 2016 | Presidential Election | 59 Comments
I don’t want to alarm anyone but Donald Trump may actually be the Antichrist. He seems to have turned formerly interesting, if slightly outré, conservative Glenn Beck into an angry, vindictive, paranoid, babbling whackjob:
It is not acceptable to ask a moral, dignified man to cast his vote to help elect an immoral man who is absent decency or dignity.
If the consequence of standing against Trump and for principles is indeed the election of Hillary Clinton, so be it. At least it is a moral, ethical choice.
If she is elected, the world does not end…. Once elected, Hillary can be fought. Her tactics are blatant and juvenile, and battling her by means of political and procedural maneuvering or through the media , through public marches and online articles, all of that will be moral, worthy of man of principal [sic].
Her nominees can be blocked, her proposed laws voted down.
By the current “conservative” Republican leadership? Seriously? Do you honestly believe that after all these years, congressional Republicans will finally grow spines? Are you high, Beck?
Lee’s call for Trump to step down and withdraw from the race is respectful to him and to the process.
How? By telling millions of Republican voters that their votes shouldn’t count because they, well, got it wrong? In other news, Beck’s “Moral, Ethical Choice” seems to have had an intimate relationship with Murder, Inc.
Glenn? It’s been nice knowing you. You hypocritical freak show.
Posted by Christopher Johnson | Monday, October 10th, 2016 | Presidential Election | 21 Comments
Does Hillary Clinton have what it takes to be the president of the United States? You’re damn right she does. She was a United States senator as well as the US Secretary of State so defending the interests of the United States against people like Vladimir Putin will be a walk in the park for her.
As long as Putin doesn’t stand up and start walking around:
Hillary Clinton’s campaign told reporters Sunday night that Donald Trump was “stalking” her around the debate floor.
Immediately following the second presidential debate of 2016, a reporter asked Hillary’s press secretary, Brian Fallon, whether she was rattled during the feisty battle.
“Of course not,” Fallon insisted from the post-debate spin room. “He was the one who was stalking.
“He couldn’t control himself and calmly sit down,” Fallon continued. “He was pacing the whole evening — even, at times, invoking the image of Rick Lazio invading her personal space. Sort of a ghoulish meandering around her when she was answering questions.”
Fallon also described Trump as “menacing.”
Posted by Christopher Johnson | Sunday, October 9th, 2016 | Presidential Election | 119 Comments
If you don’t want to watch tonight’s debate, you can follow it in the comments here. If you do watch it, if your computer’s handy and you’d like to add a comment of your own, I encourage you to do so. See you tonight.
Posted by Christopher Johnson | Friday, October 7th, 2016 | Presidential Election | 25 Comments
FBI Director James Comey bends over and grabs his ankles:
Veteran FBI agents say FBI Director James Comey has permanently damaged the bureau’s reputation for uncompromising investigations with his “cowardly” whitewash of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s mishandling of classified information using an unauthorized private email server.
How did Comey respond to the charge? Like a five-year-old child caught in the act, he pointed his little kiddie finger at other people.
Feeling the heat from congressional critics, Comey last week argued that the case was investigated by career FBI agents, “So if I blew it, they blew it, too.”
Sorry, Jimmy. This travesty of justice was as prearranged as a Hindu wedding.
But agents say Comey tied investigators’ hands by agreeing to unheard-of ground rules and other demands by the lawyers for Clinton and her aides that limited their investigation.
“In my 25 years with the bureau, I never had any ground rules in my interviews,” said retired agent Dennis V. Hughes, the first chief of the FBI’s computer investigations unit.
Instead of going to prosecutors and insisting on using grand jury leverage to compel testimony and seize evidence, Comey allowed immunity for several key witnesses, including potential targets.
The immunity agreements came with outrageous side deals, including preventing agents from searching for any documents on a Dell laptop owned by former Clinton chief of staff Cheryl Mills generated after Jan. 31, 2015, when she communicated with the server administrator who destroyed subpoenaed emails.
Comey also agreed to have Mills’ laptop destroyed after the restricted search, denying Congress the chance to look at it and making the FBI an accomplice to the destruction of evidence.
Comey’s immunized witnesses nonetheless suffered chronic lapses in memory, made unsubstantiated claims of attorney-client privilege upon tougher questioning and at least two gave demonstrably false statements. And yet Comey indulged it all.
What’s more, Comey cut a deal to give Clinton a “voluntary” witness interview on a major holiday, and even let her ex-chief of staff sit in on the interview as a lawyer, even though she, too, was under investigation.
Clinton’s interview, the culmination of a yearlong investigation, lasted just 3½ hours. Despite some 40 bouts of amnesia, she wasn’t called back for questioning; and three days later, Comey cleared her of criminal wrongdoing.
The Obama Administration. Corrupting everything it touches since 2008.
Posted by Christopher Johnson | Thursday, October 6th, 2016 | Sports Self-Destructing | 23 Comments
“Yeah, uh, hi. Is this St. Louis, Missouri?”
“This is NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.”
“Rodge!! To what do we owe the pleasure?”
“The NFL owners wanted me to ask you something.”
“Live to serve. Shoot.”
“Well, first off, about the Rams…”
“Don’t sweat it, Rodge We’re over it here even though the NFL lied through its teeth every step of the way.”
“Hey, the league bent over backwards to give you every opportunity to keep the Rams in St. Louis.”
“No you didn’t, Rodge. We both know that since the NFL never wanted the Rams to come here in the first place, you would have found fault with ANYTHING we came up with. But like we said, water under the bridge. What can we do for you, Rodge?”
“Can…uh…I trust you to keep a secret?”
“Absolutely. You have our word.”
“Lately, many of the owners and I have been having informal discussions about expansion.”
“Exactly. We all respect and admire your rich tradition with the NFL, so much so that you’re pretty much at the top of everyone’s list. So we were just wondering if you’d be receptive to an NFL expansion team.”
“We guess. A local ownership group could be assembled easily enough. Lord knows, we’re used to crappy NFL football around here so we’ve got the patience to ride out the initial phase. And the City and the County would each be quite happy to kick in a little something for improvements to the dome.”
“The…dome? But that’s…”
“Only twenty years old, give or take.”
“But what about that wonderful riverfront stadium proposal you presented to the owners?”
“Which you went out of your way to find fault with but like we said before, you can’t step in the same river twice. Anyway, that’s off the table since Major League Soccer’s getting that spot.”
“Yeah. Right after you screwed us over…”
“I resent that.”
“Please don’t take it personally, Rodge. Like we said, yesterday’s news. Anyway, right after you drilled us like a cheap whore, the MLS came to town and started going on about how much they wanted to put a team here.
“So the architectural firm that did the football stadium design immediately downsized it for an MLS soccer team. A lot of us can’t wait, to be honest with you.”
“But this is the NFL. The single most popular sports league in the world.”
“Can we ask you a question, Rodge? Does this call have anything to do with the fact that NFL TV ratings are currently in free fall and we’re talking augering in here?”
“What are you talking about?”
“That people don’t much like having somebody else’s politics shoved down their throats?”
“That has nothing to do with Colin Kap…”
“That maybe, just maybe, the NFL isn’t all that?”
“You don’t know what you’re talking about!!”
“Entirely possible. But a great many of us are genuinely excited about the prospect of the MLS coming here; we can take or leave another NFL team.
“Don’t get us wrong. If we got one, we’d support the hell out of it. But we’re not going to go out of our way to get one any more. Know why, Rodge? Most of us around here grew up with the NFL and quite frankly, Rodge, it’s been amazingly easy to let go of it.
“Because we’re just not that into you any more, Rodge.”
Posted by Christopher Johnson | Thursday, October 6th, 2016 | Anglican/Episcopal Stupidity | 22 Comments
What are those wacky Anglicans up to these days? Johnny the D is bringing back an old favorite:
Join us for the opening of our newest art exhibition, The Christa Project: Manifesting Divine Bodies. The exhibition consists of pieces by 22 contemporary artists and explores the language, symbol, art and ritual associated with the historic concept of the Christ image, and the ways the divine is manifested in every person, across every gender, race, ethnicity and sexual orientation.
We caught hell from the fundies the last time we tried this crap.
During Holy Week of 1984, Edwina Sandys’ Christa was displayed in the Cathedral as part of a small exhibition on the feminine divine. The general reception was positive, but a particularly vocal minority condemned the piece and its placement in a house of worship through ecclesiastical denunciations and a plethora of hate mail that attacked the “blasphemy” of changing the symbol of Christ. These dissenters highlighted how the sculpture’s allegedly sexualized (i.e. female) figure brought attention to Christ’s human body, which was “blasphemous, shocking, and inappropriate.”
Like the sneer quotes? But thank GAWD that we live in a more enlightened time.
Conversations about the politics of identity have changed tremendously since the 1980s. Christa’s essential statement, however, remains vital to our world today:
What might that statement be? Idiot. These people are Episcopalians; what the hell do you think it is?
people are hungry to see themselves and each other fully represented in society, especially in its most powerful and iconic institutions.
THERE we go.
In turn, the Cathedral is thrilled to display Christa once again, alongside works by 21 other contemporary artists, all exploring the language, symbolism, art, and ritual associated with the historic concept of the Christ image and the divine as manifested in every person—across all genders, races, ethnicities, sexual orientations, and abilities.
In other words, Jesus Christ, Our Lord and Savior, God Incarnate as paraplegic, Afro-Latina lesbian. Fine by me except that I have no idea how they’re going to get a wheelchair up on that cross of theirs.
Posted by Christopher Johnson | Wednesday, October 5th, 2016 | Politics | 24 Comments
Exactly when did the Democratic Party officially become an organized crime family?
Capone Obama administration is moving to dismiss charges against an arms dealer it had accused of selling weapons that were destined for Libyan rebels.
Lawyers for the Justice Department on Monday filed a motion in federal court in Phoenix to drop the case against the arms dealer, an American named Marc Turi, whose lawyers also signed the motion.
The deal averts a trial that threatened to cast additional scrutiny on Hillary Clinton’s private emails as Secretary of State, and to expose reported Central Intelligence Agency attempts to arm rebels fighting Libyan leader Moammar Qadhafi.
A Turi associate asserted that the government dropped the case because the proceedings could have embarrassed Clinton and President Barack
Capone Obama by calling attention to the reported role of their administration in supplying weapons that fell into the hands of Islamic extremist militants.
“They don’t want this stuff to come out because it will look really bad for
Capone Obama and Clinton just before the election,” said the associate.
Content edited slightly.
UPDATE: It never hurts to buy off the cops.
Immunity agreements offered to two of Hillary Clinton’s top aides prevented the FBI from looking into the circumstances surrounding the use of BleachBit, a digital deletion tool, to destroy the former secretary of state’s emails.
In a letter to Attorney General Loretta Lynch Wednesday, four Republican committee chairmen demanded to know why Cheryl Mills and Heather Samuelson, two witnesses who also served as Clinton’s personal attorneys, were granted such expansive protections despite the FBI’s awareness that they had participated in potentially illegal activities.
For example, the FBI agreed to limit its search to emails written after June 1, 2014, but before Feb. 1, 2015. By doing so, investigators were barred from looking at emails authored around the time Mills and David Kendall, Clinton’s lead attorney, held a pair of conference calls with technology contractor Paul Combetta that immediately preceded his use of BleachBit to erase thousands of Clinton’s emails.
The GOP lawmakers noted that, before the FBI signed off on the immunity deals, “it already knew of the conference calls between Secretary Clinton’s attorneys and Mr. Combetta, his use of BleachBit and the resulting deletions, further casting doubt on why the FBI would enter into such a limited evidentiary scope of review with respect to the laptops.”
Posted by Christopher Johnson | Wednesday, October 5th, 2016 | Narrow Minded Idiots | 7 Comments
First Airhead tells Hollywood airhead the real reason for the Syrian civil war:
Discussing the threat of climate change with Hollywood actor Leonardo DiCaprio, President Obama on October 3, said “powerful” studies suggest “the droughts that happened in Syria contributed to the unrest and the Syrian civil war.”
“There’s already some really interesting work — not definitive but powerful — showing that the droughts that happened in Syria contributed to the unrest and the Syrian civil war. Well, if you start magnifying that across a lot of states, a lot of nation states that already contain a lot of poor people who are just right at the margins of survival, this becomes a national security issue. And, that’s why even as we have members of Congress who scoff at climate change at the same time as they are saluting and wearing flag pins and extolling their patriotism they’re not paying attention to our Joints Chief of Staff and the Pentagon who are saying this is one of the most significant national security threats that we face over the next fifty years.”
Posted by Christopher Johnson | Wednesday, October 5th, 2016 | Presidential Election | 19 Comments
Did any of you catch the vice-presidential debate last evening between Republican Mike Pence and Democrat Tim “Crack-Ko” Kaine? Whenever the Walker, Texas Ranger episodes I was watching, which were really good, went to commercial, I’d switch over and glance at it for a bit so I only had two general observations about it.
No, GOP, you don’t get a do-over. What you’re feeling right now is called “buyer’s remorse.” Democrats? Allowing TIMMAH!! to down an entire pot of strong coffee, twelve double espressos, four or five cans of Red Bull or whatever prior to the start of the debate was a lousy strategy. Chris Cillizza of The Washington Post agrees:
Mike Pence: From the very beginning, Pence was the more comfortable of the two men on the debate stage. Pence repeatedly turned to the camera when he answered questions, making clear he understood that the real audience wasn’t in the room but watching on TV. The Indiana governor was calm, cool and collected throughout — a stark contrast to the fast-talking (and seemingly nervous) Kaine. Did Pence respond to Kaine’s dozens of attacks on Donald Trump? Only sort of. What Pence seemed to be doing was making the case for Pence-ism, a, dare I say it, compassionate conservatism — a case for Pence 2020 or 2024. Regardless, Trump will very much take it, as Pence’s performance will offer a reset of sorts for a campaign that is scrambling badly due to self-inflicted wounds from the nominee. Win or lose next month, Pence did himself real good in the eyes of the Republican world on Tuesday night.
Tim Kaine: Someone must have told the Virginia senator he needed to always be on his front foot in the debate, always be the aggressor. It didn’t work. Kaine started the debate talking so quickly and trying to load so many Trump attacks into every answer that it made it virtually impossible to grasp any one attack. In the middle of the debate, Kaine seemed to relax into it — delivering an effective attack on Trump’s comments on women. But that Kaine was the exception, not the rule. When he wasn’t trying to stuff 10 pounds of attack in a five-pound bag in his answers, he was relentlessly interrupting Pence. Every single time Pence started to level an attack against Hillary Clinton, Kaine immediately began to talk over him. I’m not sure if that was on purpose or not, but it didn’t come across well — at all. One glaring example: As Pence was recounting his personal experience on Sept. 11, 2001, Kaine interrupted to say, “I was in Virginia.” Um, okay. Not a good look.
UPDATE: Tingles concurs.
Posted by Christopher Johnson | Sunday, October 2nd, 2016 | Presidential Election | 30 Comments
The New York Times thinks that it’s found a stake to drive through the heart of Donald Trump:
Donald J. Trump declared a $916 million loss on his 1995 income tax returns, a tax deduction so substantial it could have allowed him to legally avoid paying any federal income taxes for up to 18 years, records obtained by The New York Times show.
The 1995 tax records, never before disclosed, reveal the extraordinary tax benefits that Mr. Trump, the Republican presidential nominee, derived from the financial wreckage he left behind in the early 1990s through mismanagement of three Atlantic City casinos, his ill-fated foray into the airline business and his ill-timed purchase of the Plaza Hotel in Manhattan.
Tax experts hired by The Times to analyze Mr. Trump’s 1995 records said that tax rules especially advantageous to wealthy filers would have allowed Mr. Trump to use his $916 million loss to cancel out an equivalent amount of taxable income over an 18-year period.
Might as well ask the question now. Did Trump do anything illegal? Um…no, not so much, admits the Times.
The tax experts consulted by The Times said nothing in the 1995 documents suggested any wrongdoing by Mr. Trump, even if the extraordinary size of the loss he declared would have probably attracted extra scrutiny from I.R.S. examiners. “The I.R.S., when they see a negative $916 million, that has to pop out,” Mr. Rosenfeld said.
Ann Althouse suggests that Trump could actually turn this story to his advantage.
I’d like to see Trump flip the question back to Hillary skillfully. The real issue is the tax code. Does it need to be reformed or not? If Trump took deductions, it was because the tax code provided for them. Once the deductions are there in the tax code, he pretty much has to take them and would be a fool not to take them. If it looks wrong, what’s really wrong is the tax code. So, is Hillary proposing to take away this deduction? Is Trump? Presumably, the deduction is there because it’s good policy. Will either candidate defend the policy and, if not, promise to change it? I don’t see what else matters here. And I suspect the candidates don’t even disagree about that.
How terrified is the American
Democratic Party PR department “news media” that Trump will take down this pot next month? They’re scared enough for the Times to receive stolen property in order to run this story. And they’re scared enough for Jeff Bezos’ little newsletter to run crap like this.
So we’re down the rabbit hole here. I just hope that the Gray Lady realizes the stakes involved in their bet. Because if Trump wins, the Times won’t have any White House access at all for at least the next four years.
Posted by Christopher Johnson | Sunday, October 2nd, 2016 | Hypocrites Unlimited | 26 Comments
A Southern California woman said she is the victim of discrimination, CBS Los Angeles reports.
Mary Campos said her pre-booked ticket was given away by United Airlines. The reason? She’s a woman, and two men didn’t want to sit next to a female.
A million-mile flier, Campos, a mom who lives in Coto de Caza, said she thought she’d seen it all – until a gate agent handed her a new boarding pass just before she got on a flight to Houston last Monday.
“He said, ‘This is your new seat,’” Campos said, “and I said, ‘Excuse me?’ And he said, ‘I don’t know how to tell you this.’”
She said she continued by saying, “Yes?”
And the agent told her, “The two gentlemen seated next to you have cultural beliefs that prevent them for sitting next to, talking to or communicating with females.”
She was shocked.
“I thought I lived in a culture where females were equal to men,” she said.
Campos is a senior consultant in the oil and gas industry.
She said she had no choice but to take her new seat assignment.
Campos was told the men were Pakistani monks who were wearing long orange shirts. She said the female flight crew was not allowed to serve the men.
“We can’t discriminate against half the population,” Campos said, “for a belief from another nation.”
For any of you who want to get an official boycott going, that was
What did that.
Posted by Christopher Johnson | Saturday, October 1st, 2016 | LGBT+54 | 21 Comments
Meet Laura Parson, a doctoral candidate in
Food Service Industry Direct Customer Relations Education at the University of North Dakota:
Initial exploration of the STEM syllabi in this study did not reveal overt references to gender, such as through the use of gendered pronouns. However, upon deeper review, language used in the syllabi reflects institutionalized STEM teaching practices and views about knowledge that are inherently discriminatory to women and minorities by promoting a view of knowledge as static and unchanging, a view of teaching that promotes the idea of a passive student, and by promoting a chilly climate that marginalizes women.
In other words, if you have two oranges in your shopping cart and decide to add two more oranges, you may or may not end up paying for four oranges.
Instead of promoting the idea that knowledge is constructed by the student and dynamic, subject to change as it would in a more feminist view of knowledge, the syllabi reinforce the larger male-dominant view of knowledge as one that students acquire and use make the correct decision.
Kind of makes you wonder why Parson is going to the trouble of pursuing a doctorate at all. Since “knowledge is constructed by the student and dynamic, subject to change as it would in a more feminist view of knowledge,” why not just decide that you already have the degree and save yourself the time and money?
There’s no end to the doctorates you could acquire.
But I see Parson working. And this mindset will stand her in good stead when she graduates from UND and begins her long and distinguished career as a Starbucks barista. All she’ll have to do for the rest of her working life is hand every customer a black coffee and tell any who complain that that is a veinte Caramel Macchiato.
Posted by Christopher Johnson | Friday, September 30th, 2016 | Presidential Election | 45 Comments
The New York Times, a month ago:
Several strategists said Mr. Trump’s fate in Ohio would turn less on the absence of Kasich operatives than on the fundamentals of the campaign. No candidate since 1960 has made it to the White House without winning Ohio. And while Mrs. Clinton could afford to lose there given her advantage in other battlegrounds like Virginia and Colorado, Ohio is a must-win for Mr. Trump.
He is doing well with white working-class voters in Democratic strongholds like Youngstown, where industrial jobs have vanished, and in rural counties along the Ohio River. President Obama won Youngstown’s Mahoning County in 2012, but Mr. Trump is expected to convert many voters to his cause.
But the populations in these counties are relatively small. Mr. Trump’s gains there would be outweighed by the significant losses he is expected to face in the suburbs of major cities, especially Columbus, strategists said.
Chaser. The New York Times, yesterday:
After decades as one of America’s most reliable political bellwethers, an inevitable presidential battleground that closely mirrored the mood and makeup of the country, Ohio is suddenly fading in importance this year.
Hillary Clinton has not been to the state since Labor Day, and her aides said Thursday that she would not be back until next week, after a monthlong absence, effectively acknowledging how difficult they think it will be to defeat Donald J. Trump here. Ohio has not fallen into step with the demographic changes transforming the United States, growing older, whiter and less educated than the nation at large.
Posted by Christopher Johnson | Friday, September 30th, 2016 | Presidential Election | 5 Comments
Here’s another explanation for Donald Trump that will go right over your heads.