All entries by this author

Some of the actions required

Feb 11th, 2020 4:21 pm | By

#ExpelMe is trending on Twitter. What’s it about?

There’s this:

Which we can read here.

Below find our founding statement and pledges for all Labour Party members who support trans rights to sign.

Meaning, I guess, if you don’t sign, you don’t support trans rights.

The Labour Campaign for Trans Rights has been founded by transgender and non-binary Labour members in order to advance trans liberation through the Labour Party. Trans people today are disproportionately affected

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Gangsterism is contagious

Feb 11th, 2020 11:47 am | By

The gangsters are inside the house.

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) has faced a bitter GOP backlash after casting the lone Republican vote for President Trump’s impeachment. There have been angry tweets and calls for the party to expel the man it once nominated to lead the country.

On Sunday, one influential conservative went so far as to say he could not be sure of Romney’s safety at a major right-wing gathering, alarming some of the Utah senator’s defenders and — in some critics’ eyes — crossing a line from outrage to threat.

Matt Schlapp, chairman of the Conservative Political Action Conference, made the controversial comments Sunday as he explained why Romney would be excluded from this year’s four-day event.

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This miscarriage of justice

Feb 11th, 2020 11:08 am | By

The mafia boss issues instructions.

He says “cannot allow” as if he were a literal dictator.

Barr leaps to obey as if Trump were a literal dictator.

The president sent his message a little before 2am on Tuesday, after a rally in New Hampshire and a visit to Delaware to honour two US soldiers killed in Afghanistan.

On Tuesday, it seemed the tweet would have its desired effect.

The Washington Post quoted a “senior justice department official” as saying: “The department finds the recommendation

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Women tend

Feb 11th, 2020 10:34 am | By

He’s an anthropologist so he must know.

[Editing to add: Actually, after a bit of googling, I suspect he’s not an anthropologist but a guy with a BA in anthropology. Maybe he’s filling or playing or performing the role of anthropologist and therefore, according to him, he is one.]

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Pony soldier

Feb 11th, 2020 10:15 am | By

Biden: let’s not.

Anna North at Vox elaborates:

The phrase immediately got attention, with many confused by Biden’s choice of words. As it turns out, “lying dog-faced pony soldier” is a phrase Biden has used before. He attributes it to John Wayne, though its actual provenance is somewhat unclear.

And whether it is John Wayne or not, why say it? When campaigning for the presidency? To a very … Read the rest



By a mile

Feb 10th, 2020 5:41 pm | By

Er…Don…you missed the point.

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It really was those colors

Feb 10th, 2020 5:27 pm | By

We had a hell of a sunset here last night. This fella captured it (the second one).

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Letting the flies in

Feb 10th, 2020 11:38 am | By

NPR tells us:

The Justice Department’s door is open if President Trump’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, wants to pass along information from Ukraine connected with Joe Biden and his family, Attorney General William Barr said Monday.

Why? Why is the door open?

“As I did say to Senator Graham, we have to be very careful with respect to any information from the Ukraine,” Barr said. “There are a lot of agendas in the Ukraine, a lot of cross currents, and we can’t take anything we receive from Ukraine at face value.”

Seeing as how it might be coming not from Ukraine but from Putin’s bag of tricks. Good call.… Read the rest



It is not up to him

Feb 10th, 2020 11:31 am | By

Hilarity ensued.

If it is not up to him to determine who is or who is not part of his/their/our/your LGBTQ community does that mean he can’t say TERFs are not part of it? Or no?… Read the rest



Detention is NOT prison, but it is

Feb 10th, 2020 11:02 am | By

The US is a major human rights violator.

Migrants, for instance, face extreme brutality here.

In the early morning of June 12, 2017, a group of eight Central American migrants decided to go on a hunger strike to protest conditions at the immigration detention center where they were being held in California.

When detainees arrive at the facility, they’re given a handbook that states explicitly, “Detention is NOT prison.” Immigration detention is where the government holds people while deciding whether to deport them, and most detainees have no criminal record. But this group said the conditions felt like those of a penitentiary.

And that would be a penitentiary that itself violates human rights.

The group complained that… Read the rest



The fraught terrain

Feb 10th, 2020 10:35 am | By

Kenan Malik considers the “cultural appropriation” question.

“What insults my soul,” Zadie Smith has written, “is the idea… that we can and should write only about people who are fundamentally ‘like’ us: racially, sexually, genetically, nationally, politically, personally.”

Both as novelist and essayist, Smith is one of the most subtle guides to the fraught terrain of culture and identity. The problem of “cultural appropriation” – writers and artists being called out for having stepped beyond their permitted cultural boundaries to explore themes about people who are not “fundamentally ‘like’ us” – is an issue that particularly troubles her. Too often these days, on opening a book or on viewing a painting, we are as likely to ask: “Did the

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He slammed the phone down

Feb 9th, 2020 5:57 pm | By

Aw, sad, Trump and Johnson aren’t besties any more.

Donald Trump’s previously close relationship with UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson looks close to collapse, following new revelations that the president slammed down the phone on him.

Trump’s behaviour during last week’s call was described by officials as “apoplectic,” and Johnson has now reportedly shelved plans for an imminent visit to Washington.

So I guess there’s a downside to having an unstable bad-tempered moronic self-dealing hack as president?

[R]elations broke down following a series of high-profile threats from Trump and a series of pointed interventions against Trump by Johnson and senior members of his government.

What, because of a few threats? Losers.

Why did Trump get mad?

The call, which

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Don’t forget the Masons and the Jews

Feb 9th, 2020 4:26 pm | By

That’s remarkable.

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Under attack

Feb 9th, 2020 12:01 pm | By

How cozy.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said on CBS’ “Face the Nation” that he spoke to Attorney General Bill Barr on Sunday and that the Department of Justice has “created a process” to receive and verify information that Rudy Giuliani gathered about the Bidens in Ukraine.

He did, yes.

“Rudy,” he says, chummily, as if we’re all playing nicely in the sandbox together.

GRAHAM: “We’re going to make sure Hunter Biden’s conflict of interest is explored because this is legitimate. How could Joe Biden really fight corruption when his son’s sitting on the Burisma board?

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With implications which need to be properly interrogated

Feb 9th, 2020 11:31 am | By

Starbucks in the UK is selling a new “cookie”:

Starbucks have come up with this particular tooth-rotter in the name of something they present sweetly. Purchase a “mermaids cookie” and a full 50p will be given by Starbucks to the charity Mermaids. So sweet. So innocent. Or sickening. Depending what you know.

Also on what you wonder. I wonder if Starbucks has ever given 50p per cookie to a feminist group.

Personally I view Mermaids as one of the most sinister charitable organisations in the UK. Starbucks simply says that the group supports “young transgender and gender diverse people and their families”. The undrinkable coffee chain claims that all those 50 pences will pay to support a helpline for

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The crowning moment

Feb 9th, 2020 9:08 am | By

The BBC’s New York correspondent asks if US politics is permanently down the crapper.

(My answer without reading further would be hell yes.)

Trump’s victory rally in the East Room of the White House the morning after his acquittal, where Republican jurors stood to applaud, may well come to be seen as a definitive moment – when the party of Reagan truly became the party of Trump.

But the party of Reagan was nothing to brag of. (Neither was the party of Clinton; it just wasn’t as bad as t’other one.) Reagan was elected because he was once a Hollywood B-actor. Not a good reason. He lacked Trump’s venom so in that way he was miles ahead, but the … Read the rest



A woman or someone else

Feb 8th, 2020 5:58 pm | By

Also this.

Woman or non-binary.

Women aren’t allowed to have anything for ourselves any more.… Read the rest



They thought it might look bad

Feb 8th, 2020 5:30 pm | By

Gee, how impressive: a few Republican senators tried to talk Trump out of firing Sondland. Not Vindman, mind you, oh no no, just Sondland.

A handful of Republican senators attempted to stop President Donald Trump from firing the US Ambassador to the European Union, who was a key impeachment witness, the New York Times reported Saturday.

People briefed on the discussion told the Times that the Republican senators were concerned it would look bad for Trump to fire Gordon Sondland, and told White House officials that Sondland should be allowed to leave on his own terms.

Look bad? Pffff, how silly, he’s the president, he can do whatever he wants. He says so himself.

An adviser to Trump

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There shall be one style

Feb 8th, 2020 4:35 pm | By

Who knew they wanted to ruin the built environment too?

We should have known, I suppose, given Trump’s notorious bad taste. Mr Tacky Versailles is just the type to think we must have just the one style of architecture and it should be that old marbley dignified kind like banks and public toilets.

In 1962, future Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan outlined the Guiding Principles for Federal Architecture, which prioritized contextual, human-centered buildings and argued that “an official style must be avoided.”

I wonder if he did that in reaction to the Stalinist horrors that loom over Pennsylvania Avenue.

These directives have informed policy at the U.S. General Services Administration for over 50 years—however that could soon change.

Because Evil Don … Read the rest



Next target

Feb 8th, 2020 11:32 am | By

This is insane.

According to an exclusive report from Fox News, Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) is threatening to take action against Intelligence Community Inspector General Michael Atkinson over his handling of the whistleblower’s complaint, giving him until February 14 to comply with congressional requests for documents.

“I will be referring this matter for investigation by the Department of Justice if you once again refuse to comply,” Nunes wrote in a letter.

It’s my understanding that we have laws governing this – laws that protect whistleblowers so that they won’t be too afraid to blow the whistle. Nunes appears to be breaking laws.… Read the rest