All entries by this author

Shamelessness on full display

Aug 2nd, 2019 10:48 am | By

Now for Aaron Rupar’s report on the Cincinnati fascist rally:

Trump made it more clear than ever before that he conceives of himself as the president of the states that voted for him, and little more. At various points during his speech in Cincinnati, he ridiculed living conditions and violent crime in blue “inner cities” like Baltimore, Los Angeles, and Chicago.

Arguably the lowest point in Trump’s speech came when he escalated his one-sided feud with elected officials representing one of America’s blackest cities by turning victims of gun violence in Baltimore into a political cudgel to wield against Democrats. The spectacle of the American president trying to score partisan points on violent crime in an American

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Aug 2nd, 2019 10:38 am | By

Aaron Rupar at Vox covered Trump’s Cincinnati rally at Vox but before I get to that I want to say something about the photo above his piece.

Andrew Spear/Getty Images

It’s shamingly easy to find pictures like that of Trump, and impossible to find any where he looks like a reasonable sensible grown-up human. The hair alone rules that out, and the hair isn’t all. But the thing is…you don’t see pictures like that of other political figures talking. Even Mitch McConnell, even Lindsey Graham – you don’t see photos of them rolling their eyes and screeching like lunatics. Trump? They’re everywhere. He looks unhinged…and that’s because he is.

Photos can be very misleading, but in Trump’s case they convey … Read the rest

Racist enough yet?

Aug 2nd, 2019 10:11 am | By

Also the president of the US takes to Twitter to mock Elijah Cummings for having an intruder break into his house.

“Really bad news! The Baltimore house of Elijah Cummings was robbed. Too bad!” Trump tweeted Friday morning.

Trump’s tweet came less than 24 hours after a report from WJZ, the CBS affiliate in Baltimore, that Cummings’ home had been burglarized early Saturday morning, hours before Trump launched a Twitter attack on the congressman.

He had another fascist rally yesterday.

At a raucous rally in Cincinnati, Ohio, on Thursday night, Trump continued to drag the city of Baltimore through the mud ― and extended his attacks to Chicago, San Francisco and Los Angeles.

Trump claimed that Baltimore’s homicide rate

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A short talk but a good talk

Aug 2nd, 2019 9:45 am | By

Trump wants to help Putin with the fawrest fiyas because apparently we’re especially good at putting out fawrest fiyas.

It’s funny/disgusting that he twice explains to us how bad the fiyas are by saying they’re the worst he’s ever seen.

One – he hasn’t seen them. Two, why would what he’s seen be the measure of anything? Three, he’s relying on reports by people who do know what they’re talking about, just like the rest of us, but he frames it as if he had taken a godlike trip up above the planet to check on the size of the fires in Siberia. It’s just so dopy and clueless and inept.

Also of course he contemptuously brushes off the question … Read the rest

Almost the size of Belgium

Aug 1st, 2019 1:49 pm | By

Also, the fires that destroy forests that could have absorbed some of the CO2 also fill the air with soot which…raises temperatures further.

Russia has declared a state of emergency in five Siberian regions after wildfires engulfed an area of forest almost the size of Belgium amid record high temperatures as a result of climate change.

Officials said 2.7 million hectares of forest (about 10,400 square miles) were ablaze on Tuesday as soaring temperatures, lightning storms and strong winds combined, sending smoke hundreds of miles to reach some of Russia’s biggest regional cities.

Environmental groups worry that in addition to the destruction of carbon-absorbing forest, the carbon dioxide, smoke and soot released will accelerate temperature increases that are already

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The Greenland ice sheet

Aug 1st, 2019 1:41 pm | By

What happens when there’s nothing left to melt?

In years past, when it rained near Greenlander Toennes Berthelsen’s family camp, water would flood down as the mountain top ice melted, creating rivers where there usually are none.

Last week, when it rained there, there was no river at all.

“It was heavy raining, but we couldn’t see any flood coming down,” Berthelsen said. The ice cap at the top of the mountain was completely gone.

It’s been exceptionally warm in Greenland this year.

Now, the same heat dome that cooked Europe is forecast to raise temperatures in Greenland into the 70s Fahrenheit on parts of the coast, and the ice sheet is in the midst of one of its most

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Not Emmett Till

Aug 1st, 2019 1:10 pm | By

Updating to add: The article is from August 2016 so obviously the inspiration must be the other way around. H/t clamboy for noticing.

Yaniv has inspired imitators. Of course.

A transgender woman in Charlottetown has filed a complaint with the P.E.I. Human Rights Commission alleging she was refused service at a local salon because of her transgender status.

Kristen McKay says she went into Carrie’s Esthetic Salon in downtown Charlottetown on Tuesday afternoon to get her nails and makeup done and for makeup lessons.

Behold the transgender woman in question:

Krystalle Ramlakhan/CBC

McKay said a woman at the salon informed her that she didn’t do services for men, and when McKay replied that she’s not a man but a

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Give back those medals

Aug 1st, 2019 10:47 am | By

The dictator strikes again:

Navy officials said Wednesday they are pulling achievement medals from prosecutors who argued the case against a decorated Navy SEAL who was acquitted in the death of a wounded Islamic State captive after President Donald Trump intervened.

Trump tweeted earlier Wednesday that he had directed the secretary of the Navy and the chief of naval operations to “immediately withdraw and rescind” the Navy Achievement Medal from prosecutors who argued the case against Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher, who was acquitted by military jurors earlier this month. “The Prosecutors who lost the case against SEAL Eddie Gallagher (who I released from solitary confinement so he could fight his case properly), were ridiculously given a Navy

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Aug 1st, 2019 10:39 am | By

A seller of guns seeks new customers by putting targets on lefty brown women in Congress:

A gun shop owner in North Carolina put up a billboard that is more of an attack than an advertisement. The sign, about one mile away from Cherokee Guns in Murphy, North Carolina, shows four congresswomen of color — who have become known as “the Squad” — with a disparaging message.

“The 4 Horsemen Cometh,” the sign reads, with the word “Cometh” scratched out and replaced with “are idiots.”

Below are the faces of Reps. Ilhan Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib and Ayanna Pressley, who were the subject of a barrage of racist tweets by President Trump.

What could possibly go wrong.

He’s giving … Read the rest

He could have founded a race of super…whatevers

Jul 31st, 2019 5:28 pm | By

Oh look…Jeffrey Epstein had big dreams of improving the human species by mass-impregnating women with his SpecialSpunk™.

Jeffrey E. Epstein, the wealthy financier who is accused of sex trafficking, had an unusual dream: He hoped to seed the human race with his DNA by impregnating women at his vast New Mexico ranch.

Mr. Epstein over the years confided to scientists and others about his scheme, according to four people familiar with his thinking, although there is no evidence that it ever came to fruition.

Mr. Epstein’s vision reflected his longstanding fascination with what has become known as transhumanism: the science of improving the human population through technologies like genetic engineering and artificial intelligence. Critics have likened transhumanism to

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Guest post: Is that an appropriate thing to ask?

Jul 31st, 2019 4:50 pm | By

Originally a comment by Screechy Monkey on Can you affirm my gender at 3 p.m. Tuesday?

The “gender affirming” bit is key. It seems to be what all of these fights are about, or at least most of them.

Yaniv wants these spas to give her treatments that will supposedly “affirm” her in her gender. (I’m more than a little suspicious that this is Yaniv’s only or even her main motive, but let that go for now.)

Trans women athletes want to compete with cis women because it will “affirm” their gender to be in the “women’s” event. (Again, I’m being charitable and assuming that they’re not motivated by a desire to win awards and scholarships.)

Same for arguments about … Read the rest

Can you affirm my gender at 3 p.m. Tuesday?

Jul 31st, 2019 3:01 pm | By

Pink News rushes to the defense of J Yaniv:

Jessica Yaniv says she has received huge backlash from journalists and on social media for asking salons to give her a Brazilian wax as a trans woman, with some calling it “sexual assault.”

Is that true? For asking? Not for suing when turned down? Can it really be called “asking” when the response to “no” is a lawsuit? Looks more like demanding, to me.

Although there has been a focus on Yaniv’s requests for a Brazilian wax, she told PinkNews that the coverage “has not been fair nor accurate,” and that she was in fact requesting many different services which would be “gender-affirming” for her.

And we can be completely … Read the rest

The bigotry, hatred, intolerance, and xenophobia that is hurled at us

Jul 31st, 2019 12:19 pm | By

The churchy people who run “the National Cathedral” in DC have issued a rebuke of Trump. (What actually is “the National Cathedral”? Is that just the name it gave itself? We’re not supposed to have a federal cathedral, surely. But anyway.) Mostly I don’t publicize what churchy people say, but given that presidents are expected to do things there (again, why?), this one is of interest.

The escalation of racialized rhetoric from the President of the United States has evoked responses from all sides of the political spectrum. On one side, African American leaders have led the way in rightfully expressing outrage. On the other, those aligned with the President seek to downplay the racial overtones of his attacks,

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Tchau, rainforest

Jul 31st, 2019 11:39 am | By

Yesterday we read about forest fires in the western US reducing the ability of forests to regrow and continue to sequester carbon; today it’s Brazil’s turn.

Deforestation of the Brazilian Amazon has surged above three football fields a minute, according to the latest government data, pushing the world’s biggest rainforest closer to a tipping point beyond which it cannot recover.

The sharp rise – following year-on-year increases in May and June – confirms fears that president Jair Bolsonaro has given a green light to illegal land invasion, logging and burning.

Clearance so far in July has hit 1,345 sq km, a third higher than the previous monthly record under the current monitoring system by the Deter B satellite

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Providing care

Jul 31st, 2019 11:21 am | By

Meanwhile, about the Uighurs

China has detained an estimated 1 million to 2 million Uighur Muslims in the region of Xinjiang, and millions more live one step away from detention under the watchful eye of the Chinese Communist Party.

Why it matters: It has been two years since the internment camps first came to light internationally, and a series of reports from Xinjiang have made vivid the scale of the abuses. Yet foreign governments and corporations are content to pretend it isn’t happening.

“If right now, just about any other country in the world [were] found to be detaining over 1 million Muslims of a certain ethnicity, you can bet we’d be seeing an international outcry,” says Sophie Richardson,

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He assures us he is “the least racist person in the world”

Jul 31st, 2019 10:51 am | By

Trump’s latest contribution to the conversation:

CNN’s Don Lemon, the dumbest man on television, insinuated last night while asking a debate “question” that I was a racist, when in fact I am “the least racist person in the world.” Perhaps someone should explain to Don that he is supposed to be neutral, unbiased & fair,……..or is he too dumb (stupid} to understand that. No wonder CNN’s ratings (MSNBC’s also) have gone down the tubes – and will stay there until they bring credibility back to the newsroom. Don’t hold your breath!

The “dumb (stupid}” is a nice touch, especially the mismatched brackets.

Anyway, no worries, it’s all political correctness run mad.

“Everybody’s called a racist now,” Trump said in

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Fox named to administer hen house

Jul 31st, 2019 10:26 am | By

A rabid opponent of federal land management has been put in charge of…federal land management. Of course he has.

Interior Secretary David Bernhardt on Monday signed an order making Wyoming native William Perry Pendley acting head of the Bureau of Land Management. The bureau’s holdings are sweeping, with nearly one out of every 10 acres nationally, and 30% of minerals, under its dominion, mostly across the U.S. West.

Pendley, a former midlevel Interior appointee in the Reagan administration, for decades has championed ranchers and others in standoffs with the federal government over grazing and other uses of public lands. He has written books accusing federal authorities and environmental advocates of “tyranny” and “waging war on the West.” He argued in

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A small number of influential actors

Jul 31st, 2019 9:36 am | By

A reminder to consider the likely impacts:

The “unregulated roll-out” of gender self-identification in Scotland has taken place with weak or non-existent scrutiny which could be putting women and girls at risk, according to new research.

University of Edinburgh academics Dr Kath Murray and Lucy Hunter Blackburn argue that decision-making on sex and gender identity issues has been directed towards the interests of a specific group, “without due regard” for the wider population.

Published on Monday in the university’s journal Scottish Affairs, the study claims that policy makers have been over-influenced by those lobbying for the rights of trans people to the “detriment” of women and girls.

Why is that? Why has it been so quick and easy? I … Read the rest

Guest post: This is the standard of argument we get

Jul 31st, 2019 8:37 am | By

Originally a comment by latsot at Miscellany Room 3.

Have we done this one yet? So many of these things turn up in my labyrinthine feeds that I sometimes have trouble keeping track.

[Answer: no, we haven’t. I saw it last week and made a couple of attempts to read it but found it way too long for purpose as well as excruciatingly annoying so I turned my back on it.]

Anyway, as the URL suggests, the title is Dear Philosophers, You Can Trust the Feminist Consensus: Gender-Critical Radical Feminism is Bogus

It seems to be all over the place and since today I reached peak procrastination, I finally started to read it.

It’s written by a … Read the rest

Now we’re Cotton Mather

Jul 30th, 2019 4:24 pm | By

Oh good grief. I thought I was going to leave the subject for today but then I saw this piece at Inside Higher Ed, fatuously titled Taking Trans Lives Seriously. Because what, there are all these people making a big joke of trans lives? Are we supposed to take trans lives more seriously than any other kinds of lives? (Of course; stupid question.)

It is not permissible to debate in some academic parlor game the lives of people who are oppressed and murdered, writes Mark Lance.

“Some academic parlor game” says a professor of philosophy at Georgetown. Anyway people aren’t “debating the lives” of trans people in the way he wants us to think: debating whether they deserve to … Read the rest