All entries by this author

Guest post: Of course it happened because those people were poor

Jun 16th, 2017 9:32 am | By

Originally a comment by Steamshovel mama on Less than £5,000.

they could only have used materials that met current safety standards


Because nobody has ever cut corners, bought cheap materials or employed under-educated, underpaid site workers who don’t know what they’re supposed to be using.

The use of thermal cladding is covered by Regulation B4(1) of The Building regulations 2010. It states:

The external walls of the building shall adequately resist the spread of fire over the walls and from one building to another, having regard to the height, use, and position of the building

You know, so the building doesn’t go up like a fucking candle, exactly as we can all see happening in the video of … Read the rest

Trolling the troll

Jun 16th, 2017 9:24 am | By

This Post headline says it all:

Trump said foreign leaders wouldn’t laugh at the U.S. Now they’re laughing at him.

Literally. They’re literally holding him up for mockery.

In Mexico, former president Vicente Fox posted a profane video on YouTube, mocking Trump’s taste for taco bowls (“they’re not even Mexican!”) and border walls (“Mexico will not pay”) that has been viewed nearly half a million times.

In France, new President Emmanuel Macron unveiled a website titled “Make Our Planet Great Again” and invited U.S. scientists to move there, a week after Trump withdrew the United States from the Paris climate accord.

And in Australia, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, who sparred with Trump in a testy phone call in February,

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But Rosenstein told him to!

Jun 16th, 2017 8:58 am | By

Don’s matutinal eruptions:

Ah yes his Very Powerful Social Media – with which he is putting himself in legal jeopardy day after day. Clever fellow.

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The legal jeopardy increases by the day

Jun 15th, 2017 5:23 pm | By

A rough day in Donnylvania.

A heightened sense of unease gripped the White House on Thursday, as President Trump lashed out at reports that he’s under scrutiny for obstructing justice, aides repeatedly deflected questions about the probe, and Vice President Pence acknowledged hiring a private lawyer to handle fallout from investigations into Russian election meddling.

A defiant Trump at multiple points Thursday expressed his frustration with reports about that development, tweeting that he is the subject of “the single greatest WITCH HUNT in American political history,” and one that he said is being led by “some very bad and conflicted people.”

Defiant like a three-year-old who wants that god damn package of candy in the grocery store right … Read the rest

Less than £5,000

Jun 15th, 2017 4:39 pm | By

The Times at midnight:

Grenfell Tower refurbishers would have needed less than £5,000 to upgrade the building’s external panels to a fire-resistant version thought not to have been used, The Times can reveal.

Hundreds of aluminium panels, known as Reynobond, were installed on the 230ft west London property in a £8.6 million refurbishment. Witnesses described the building’s cladding, made up of the panels and an insulating underlayer, as going up like a “matchstick”.

Reynobond offers three types of panel: a standard one with a polyethylene core (PE) and two with fire resistant or “non combustible” cores. Grenfell Tower had reportedly been fitted with the cheaper PE version.

Well it was council flats you know. Not for People Like Us. … Read the rest

All he did was fire the FBI Director, dammit

Jun 15th, 2017 1:36 pm | By

Whoopsie, Don is losing it.

Well let’s see – one, they were looked at, and two, she’s not president and she’s not in the government.

He’s losing it. He’ll be running around the Rose Garden with his underpants on his head in a couple of hours, at this rate.… Read the rest

Like a nightdress by a fire

Jun 15th, 2017 12:22 pm | By

The Independent says appearance was part of the reason for the new cladding on Grenfell Tower.

The cladding that might have led to the horrifying blaze at Grenfell Tower was added partly to improve its appearance.

During a refurbishment aimed at regeneration last year, cladding was added to the sides of the building to update its look. The cladding then seems to have helped the fire spread around the building, allowing it to destroy almost the entirety of the structure and kill people inside.

And that cladding – a low-cost way of improving the front of the building – was chosen in part so that the tower would look better when seen from the conservation areas and luxury

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Watching from the Mercedes

Jun 15th, 2017 11:48 am | By

Charges are going to be filed against Erdoğan’s security gang who attacked peaceful protesters the other week.

Lawmakers from both parties on Capitol Hill, as well as a smattering of advocacy groups, have clamored that those responsible for the assault be prosecuted. Last week, the House unanimously passed a resolution condemning the attack and calling for charges against the security forces.

One of those lawmakers, Representative Edward R. Royce, the chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, welcomed news of the charges, urging the State Department on Wednesday to “double down” on its efforts to “bring these individuals to justice.”

In calibrating its response, though, the Trump administration has had to tread carefully, navigating a web of diplomatic and military

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“The deep state spear”

Jun 15th, 2017 11:30 am | By

Newt Gingrich is getting in on the act too, NPR points out.

There has been an effort on the right to try to undermine Mueller to de-legitimize his potential findings…:

I find that shocking. I keep being shocked by these people. I suppose it’s naïve, but I can’t help it.

… even though some of the same people just a month

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Jun 15th, 2017 10:42 am | By

Of course Don has tweeted.

Sadly for him, it’s obstruction of justice even if the investigation turns up nothing in the end. The point of an investigation is to find out, so obstruction of that investigation is obstruction no matter what the findings are.

How ironic it would be if he turns out to be spotlessly … Read the rest


Jun 15th, 2017 10:23 am | By

The unfortunate people who had to live in Grenfell Tower have been raising safety concerns for years.

The residents of Grenfell Tower had reportedly raised fire safety concerns for several years before the blaze that engulfed the block of flats in west London on Wednesday, according to a community action group.

The claim comes as London Fire Brigade said there had been a “number of fatalities” at the tower block.

Grenfell Tower in north Kensington was completed in 1974 in the brutalist style of the era, comprising 120 flats over 24 storeys.

Ah yes, the “brutalist” style – aka as cheap and unadorned and brutally ugly as possible. Calling it “brutalist” makes it sound artistic, I suppose. What … Read the rest

The Second Amendment is treated as a sacred edict from the heavens

Jun 15th, 2017 9:27 am | By

Jamila Bey asks some pointed questions about yesterday’s terrorist mass shooting in Alexandria.

The talk of mental illness is immediate when a white man takes up his arms and turns them against innocents. Despite that, the overwhelming majority of people who have mental illness never become violent, terroristic killers.

But even if we are to grant that this particular shooter in the Alexandria incident did suffer from mental illness, there is still a main question to be answered. And it should be laid at the feet of Scalise and his similar-voting colleagues on Capitol Hill. We have to ask legislators, “Can we talk about protecting Americans from the proven threat that is domestic terror?”

Scalise holds an A-plus rating from

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A widening probe

Jun 14th, 2017 4:29 pm | By

There it is.

The special counsel overseeing the investigation into Russia’s role in the 2016 election is interviewing senior intelligence officials as part of a widening probe that now includes an examination of whether President Trump attempted to obstruct justice, officials said.

The move by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III to investigate Trump’s conduct marks a major turning point in the nearly year-old FBI investigation, which until recently focused on Russian meddling during the presidential campaign and on whether there was any coordination between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin. Investigators have also been looking for any evidence of possible financial crimes among Trump associates, officials said.

But Trump tried to put the arm on Comey so now … Read the rest

Our children deserve to grow up in a nation of safety and peace

Jun 14th, 2017 3:42 pm | By

The Times has updated news on the Alexandria shootings.

Local officers arrived minutes after they received desperate calls for help, including from those still under siege at the field, the authorities said. The F.B.I. said it would take the lead in the investigation, treating it as an assault on a federal officer.

Too bad the FBI is shorthanded right now…

The shooting stunned the capital as it began its workday. Out of caution, officials quickly put in place a “robust police presence throughout the Capitol complex,” and the Secret Service added security around the White House.

Speaker Paul D. Ryan addressed his colleagues in the House chamber shortly after noon, saying the body was united in its shock and

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Jun 14th, 2017 12:04 pm | By

Meanwhile twelve people are known to have died so far in a horrific fire in a London block of flats. The number of deaths is expected to rise.

Firefighters rescued 65 people from Grenfell Tower in north Kensington, after they were called at 00:54 BST.

Eyewitnesses said people were trapped in tower block, screaming for help and yelling for their children to be saved.

Policing and fire minister Nick Hurd said checks are now planned on similar tower blocks.

Claire Heald reports from the scene.

Fire crews are fewer, police remain in force. The local MP has been. NHS workers, counsellors, volunteers come and go.

You hear snatched conversations – who is missing, who has news? And wails and

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There was so much gunfire, you couldn’t get up and run

Jun 14th, 2017 11:22 am | By

And now this.

A lone gunman opened fire on Republican members of the congressional baseball team at a practice field in a Washington suburb Wednesday, using a rifle to shower the field with bullets that struck five people, including Steve Scalise, the majority whip of the House of Representatives.

The first I knew of it was a Facebook post by a friend wondering wtf just happened in the park a block from where he lives. A torrent of gunfire, it sounded like. It turned out that’s exactly what it was.

The suspect was killed.

Law enforcement authorities identified him as James T. Hodgkinson, 66, from Belleville, Ill., a suburb of St. Louis.

Two members of Mr. Scalise’s protective

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It’s all so easy

Jun 13th, 2017 5:22 pm | By

Gwyneth Paltrow is still doing her home-made medical consultation thing. There was a GOOP health expo in LA last weekend.

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23 million people

Jun 13th, 2017 4:23 pm | By

The Senate is still huddled in its reeking cave working on its Top Secret annul health care bill that no one will have time to read before it’s passed.

A coterie of Republicans is planning to have the Senate vote before July 4 on a bill that could take health insurance away from up to 23 million people and make changes to the coverage of millions of others. And they are coming up with the legislation behind closed doors without holding hearings, without consulting lawmakers who disagree with them and without engaging in any meaningful public debate.

Well naturally. When you’re fucking over 23 million people you don’t do it where they can see you.

There is no mystery why

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Shan’t tell you

Jun 13th, 2017 3:44 pm | By

Sessions is stonewalling.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions offered an indignant defense on Tuesday against what he called “an appalling and detestable lie” that he may have colluded with the Russian effort to interfere in the 2016 election, showcasing his loyalty to President Trump in an often contentious Senate hearing but declining to answer central questions about his or the president’s conduct.

Sounding by turns defiant and wounded, Mr. Sessions, a former senator from Alabama, often infused his testimony with more emotion than specifics. He insisted repeatedly that it would be “inappropriate” to discuss his private conversations with the president, however relevant they might be, visibly frustrating senators who have been conducting their own inquiry into Russia’s election meddling.

This … Read the rest

Amazing, miraculous, resplendent, stupefying

Jun 13th, 2017 11:13 am | By

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