All entries by this author

Stupid things at 17

Sep 10th, 2020 4:51 pm | By

He’s not called Don Junior for nothing.

While speaking about 17-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse, charged with homicide in the shooting deaths of two people and the wounding of a third during unrest in Kenosha, Donald Trump Jr. said, “We all do stupid things at 17.”

The president’s son made the comment during an interview with “Extra” host Rachel Lindsay, a former contestant on “The Bachelor.”

Well, lots of us do, yes – things like getting drunk, getting pregnant, scratching the car, failing calculus, not cleaning up the kitchen when asked. We don’t all shoot two people to death.

“If I put myself in Kyle Rittenhouse(‘s shoes), maybe I shouldn’t have been there. He’s a young kid. I don’t want

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Sir why did you lie sir

Sep 10th, 2020 1:12 pm | By

Trump’s caught in his zipper.

“How dare you accuse me of lying! I never lie!!!” “Sir, that’s a lie right there, sir.”

Uh…what?… Read the rest

She was probably nudged

Sep 10th, 2020 12:25 pm | By

Less than a week but still too long.

Less than a week after George Washington University announced Jessica Krug would not resume teaching this semester after the professor revealed she had been lying for years about being Black, the school announced she has resigned.

“Dr. Krug has resigned her position, effective immediately. Her classes for this semester will be taught by other faculty members, and students in those courses will receive additional information this week,” the university said in a statement obtained by CNN on Wednesday.

We need a word for this move – this form of fraud in which a person with more social privilege pretends to be a person with less social privilege. Maybe we already have … Read the rest

How to cheerleader

Sep 10th, 2020 11:34 am | By

The Guardian has some more details on Trump’s compassionate and patriotic desire to shield the American people from the truth about COVID-19.

Specifically asked whether he downplayed the seriousness of the coronavirus pandemic, Trump told reporters, “In order to reduce panic, perhaps that’s so.”

As one does. If the house is on fire, you tell the people in it that it’s not serious, because you don’t want them to panic.

The president insisted his strategy was focused on encouraging Americans to remain calm, as the virus spread across the country.

“You have to show leadership, and leadership is confidence in our country,” Trump said.

Well, see, here’s the thing – the danger is a contagious disease that is lethal to … Read the rest

Back to school gifts

Sep 10th, 2020 7:21 am | By

A bizarre item this morning.

Penis masks! How creative! But…back to school gifts?

No no, that’s not what they meant, they said.

Whatever. I became curious about … Read the rest

Just make it match

Sep 10th, 2020 6:32 am | By

There was so much stuff yesterday that I never got to the DHS whistleblower. About that:

A senior Department of Homeland Security official alleges that he was told to stop providing intelligence reports on the threat of Russian interference in the 2020 election, in part because it “made the President look bad,” an instruction he believed would jeopardize national security.

Gee, what a wacky belief.

The official, Brian Murphy, who until recently was in charge of intelligence and analysis at DHS, said in a whistleblower complaint that on two occasions he was told to stand down on reporting about the Russian threat and alleged that senior officials told him to modify other intelligence reports, including about white supremacists, to

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Surge in cases in 5, 4, 3…

Sep 9th, 2020 4:59 pm | By

Golly, there was a big ol’ to-do about a religious fanatic who wanted to throw a religious super-spreader event in a Seattle park on Labor Day (this past Monday) but the Parks Department said no you can’t and closed the park.

A prayer rally was planned for Seattle’s Gas Works Park on Labor Day, prior to the city announcing the park’s temporary closure.

On Friday, Sept. 4, Seattle Parks and Recreation issued a notice that Gas Works Park would be closed Sept. 7 “due to anticipated crowding that could impact affect the public health of residents.”

On Saturday, Sept. 5, worship leader Sean Feucht released a statement on his Facebook page, saying the city announced the temporary

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Branding opportunities

Sep 9th, 2020 3:15 pm | By

About these awesome book deals that do nothing to save anyone: Dahlia Lithwick last November:

These books are not necessarily about saving the country. Take, for example, Bolton, Trump’s hawkish former national security adviser, who reportedly just reached a $2 million deal with Simon & Schuster for a book to come out next year. Now, Bolton could certainly serve his nation right now by confirming what Fiona Hill has testified to regarding the effort to extort Ukrainian assistance in cooking up oppo research for Trump in advance of the 2020 election. Hill has said that when the plot unwound around Bolton, he told her, “I am not part of whatever drug deal Sondland and Mulvaney are cooking up,” and

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On the hook

Sep 9th, 2020 2:51 pm | By

Siva has a point.

I don’t know why I overlooked that this morning. Why the hell (obvious selfish reasons aside) did Woodward not report the story at the time instead of saving it for his book launch?

I suppose a likely answer is that Trump agreed to the interviews for a book, not a Washington Post story. But maybe in a life or death situation you ought to break a deal of that kind? Just maybe?… Read the rest

The episodic man

Sep 9th, 2020 12:03 pm | By


When Northwestern University psychologist Dan P. McAdams first wrote about Donald Trump’s psyche for “The Atlantic” in 2016, he knew his subject was not your average politician. He just couldn’t nail down why. 

His new book, “The Strange Case of Donald J. Trump: A Psychological Reckoning” (Oxford University Press, March 2020), provides some surprising answers. Trump, McAdams asserts, may be the rare person who lacks any inner story, something most people develop to give their lives unity, meaning and purpose.

McAdams is something called a “narrative psychologist.”

Trump, McAdams argues, can’t form a meaningful life story because he is the “episodic man” who sees life as a series of battles to be won. There is no connection between

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How to share perspectives

Sep 9th, 2020 11:08 am | By

The American Humanist Association is apparently captive. Rachel Deitch, their Director of Policy and Social Justice, ardently defends the “right” of men who identify as women to compete against women in sport. Women have to take a back seat to men who identify as women.

A few weeks ago this story was shared on the Facebook page of the American Humanist Association (AHA) to celebrate a preliminary injunction by a federal judge against Idaho’s backwards Fairness in Women’s Sports Act. The comments thread quickly devolved into a malicious and transphobic free-for-all. Faced with an onslaught of posts that violated our social media guidelines, our social media coordinator brought the social justice department in to assist. It took nearly three

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He knew

Sep 9th, 2020 9:25 am | By

How interesting. Trump told Bob Woodward on February 7 how very dangerous the coronavirus is. February 7.

President Donald Trump admitted he knew weeks before the first confirmed US coronavirus death that the virus was dangerous, airborne, highly contagious and “more deadly than even your strenuous flus,” and that he repeatedly played it down publicly, according to legendary journalist Bob Woodward in his new book “Rage.”

“This is deadly stuff,” Trump told Woodward on February 7.

In a series of interviews with Woodward, Trump revealed that he had a surprising level of detail about the threat of the virus earlier than previously known. “Pretty amazing,” Trump told Woodward, adding that the coronavirus was maybe five times “more deadly”

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Just don’t defame & don’t vilify

Sep 9th, 2020 9:14 am | By

Captain Clinch is gloating.

What is “vilify”? How is it defined? What’s the standard? What’s the threshold? How is the tension between “it is a crime to vilify” and the value of free speech resolved?

Exactly, to the minute, 24 hours between the two.… Read the rest

Here for the ratio

Sep 9th, 2020 8:24 am | By

But the new one is getting piled on too.

Don’t “vilify” this huge threatening man or he will make you pay him $10,000 for the vilifitude.

Brilliant way of putting it; I wish I’d … Read the rest

So don’t vilify people Canberrans!

Sep 9th, 2020 8:05 am | By

It gets more and more sinister.

ACT is Australian Capital Territory, so that’s the Twitter account of the Australian Capital Territory Human Rights Commission – which is disturbing. Apparently it’s against the law to “vilify” people in the ACT, but the ACTHRC doesn’t bother to tell us what “vilify” means. It’s hard to believe that liking Facebook posts amounts to “vilification” under Australian law but who the fuck knows at this point. But don’t worry, folks, just don’t “vilify” … Read the rest

Not going anywhere

Sep 8th, 2020 5:35 pm | By

Kolesnikova tore up her passport rather than let her kidnappers force her to leave Belarus.

“She was pushed into the back seat (of the car), she yelled that she wasn’t going anywhere,” Ms Kolesnikova’s colleague Anton Rodnenkov told a news conference in the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv, on Tuesday.

Mr Rodnenkov said he and another colleague had been kidnapped on Monday, driven between buildings, and interrogated with hoods over their heads and their hands tied.

They accepted an offer to leave Belarus with Ms Kolesnikova but when the car reached the border she refused to cross. The two men told journalists they did not know where she was now.

She’s a brave woman.… Read the rest

When she ‘liked’ offensive comments

Sep 8th, 2020 5:10 pm | By

Oh no, another huge bruiser of a man victimized by a woman who Liked comments on Facebook. That will be ten thousand dollars madam, pay the cashier.

A dispute over a post on Canberra radio newsreader Beth Rep’s Facebook page was meant to end with an apology to transgender activist Bridget Clinch.

Instead, the ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal yesterday found Ms Rep breached discrimination laws when she ‘liked’ offensive comments on the post, and ordered she pay Ms Clinch $10,000 in compensation.

Ms Clinch — an Australian Army captain who medically transitioned from life as a male to female in 2010 — first came into contact with Ms Rep after the newsreader made online comments about her after International

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Her requests were burdensome

Sep 8th, 2020 4:36 pm | By

Trump is getting the Justice Department to defend him in that E. Jean Carrol defamation suit.

Not long after the ruling, Trump was given deadlines to produce his DNA. Carroll is a former Elle columnist who alleged that Trump sexually assaulted her in the 1990s in the dressing room of a Bergdorf Goodman department store. Carroll has claimed that the “Donna Karan coat-dress” she was wearing at the time of the alleged rape has been hanging on the back of her closet door and remained “unworn and unlaundered since that evening.” Carroll and her lawyers have requested a DNA swab so that Trump’s DNA can be compared to sample of unidentified male DNA found on the dress. In

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Vroom vroom

Sep 8th, 2020 4:06 pm | By

About that Sturgis Motorcycle Rally

According to a new study, which tracked anonymized cellphone data from the rally, over 250,000 coronavirus cases have now been tied to the 10-day event, one of the largest to be held since the start of the pandemic. It drew motorcycle enthusiasts from around the country, many of whom were seen without face coverings inside crowded bars, restaurants, and other indoor establishments. 

The explosion in cases, the study from the Germany-based IZA Institute of Labor Economics finds, is expected to reach $12 billion in public health costs.

Gee. You could build a lot of good public housing with $12 billion.

“The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally represents a situation where many of the ‘worst-case scenarios’ for

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Let’s burn stuff to celebrate!

Sep 8th, 2020 2:00 pm | By

This in the Atlantic is from last November:

At least one human life has already been lost as a direct result of the widespread obsession with turning the sex of one’s unborn child into an explosive (often literally) spectacle. In October, an Iowa woman was killed when her family inadvertently built a pipe bomb as part of their gender-reveal party—a gathering at which expectant parents dramatically and colorfully announce the sex of their baby.

The methods for doing so seem to have started out as benign, if stereotypical—cutting into a cake to reveal either blue or pink frosting, say. But in the past couple of years, some kind of communal madness has taken hold, and many of these feats

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