Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Joe Walsh is Not Your Friend

Okay, I can't believe that this needs to be said, but from some things I've seen on Twitter, apparently it does: just because Joe Walsh is critical of Trump, that does not - in any way - make Joe Walsh a good or decent person.

One of the most wrong-headed aphorisms is " the enemy of my enemy is my friend." I'm not saying that it is never true, but if the enemy of your enemy is also a vile disgusting excuse for a human being, you can enjoy watching the two enemies fight each other, but neither of them is your friend.

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Sometimes, there's just not a "good guy" in the fight.

Which brings us to today's headline.

Joe Walsh Apologizes for ‘Creating’ Trump, Calling Obama Muslim During 2020 Announcement

Wow. "Sorry I fucked everything up, please vote for me for President" is a pretty ballsy approach!

After making his case for why Trump is “completely unfit to be president” and he could be the “alternative” more traditional Republican voters have been craving, 

Ah, yes. the "traditional Republicans." The grand tradition stretching all the way back to 2008 when Republicans first discovered that they didn't like having a black President! Of course, back in those days, their party was known as the "Tea Party," for those of you who are too young to remember back to those halcyon days.

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Ah, sweet tradition!

Pity the poor "traditional Republican" voter. Disgusted by the boorish, bumptious Donald Trump, they went into the 2016 primary with no one else for whom to cast their vote except for Ted Cruz. And Marco Rubio. And Rand Paul. And Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, Rick Perry and John Kasich. Oh,and Bobby Jindal, Lindsey Graham, Scott Walker and Rick Santorum. So, even though they craved - CRAVED! - an alternative to the despicable dim-witted Donald Trump, they somehow must have had no option but to nominate him. Apparently, no "alternative" like Joe "deadbeat Dad" Walsh had yet presented itself.

“I helped create Trump,” the right-wing radio host replied. “And George, that's not an easy thing to say.” As part of the “Tea Party class” in Congress, Walsh said he “wanted to shake Washington up” and sometimes “went beyond the policy and the idea differences, and I got personal, and I got hateful.” 

I got personal and I got hateful. You know, I'm pretty much the anti-Trump!

For much of the Obama administration, Walsh repeatedly pushed the same “birther” conspiracies that Trump did and, as the host pointed out, was calling Obama a Muslim as recently as December 2016. “Did you really believe he's a Muslim?” Stephanopoulos asked.
“God no. And I have apologized for that,” Walsh answered.

Haha, no! I'm not dumb enough to actually believe that, George! I'm just a shameless race-baiting liar! Vote for me for President!

“But think about the contrast, George,” Walsh added. “Again, I'm baring my soul with you right now on national TV. We have a guy in the White House who's never apologized for anything he's done or said. I think it's a weakness not to apologize. I helped create Trump. There's no doubt about that, the personal, ugly politics. I regret that. And I'm sorry for that.” 

Look, George, Trump will say racist, homophobic misogynist shit and never apologize. I, on the other hand will say racist homophobic and sexist shit and then I WILL apologize. And I'll even feel bad about it! Vote for me for President!

Need any more reason to vote Walsh? Check out thgis other interview he did on MSNBC:

"I wouldn’t call myself a racist, but I would say, John, I’ve said racist things on Twitter. There's no doubt about it. And an apology is not enough," Walsh, who represented Illinois's 8th Congressional District between 2011 and 2013, said on MSNBC. 

An apology is not enough to make up for the horrible things I have said. I feel like I should not only apologize but also be the President of the United States. That's really the only way to heal this nation.

"When I said Barack Obama was a Muslim, that was a horrible thing to say, and I said it because I was so disgusted with Obama’s policy toward Israel that I went a bad, ugly step," he said. 

So. . . unlike Trump, I just try to slander my political opponents when I find their policies disagreeable. And, unlike Trump, I think that it si a gravce insult to refer to someone as a "Muslim."
I'm pretty much the Bizzarro-Trump!

Walsh, who has been openly critical of Trump's presidency, on Sunday announced that he was launching a primary challenge against the president.
"I'm running because he's unfit. Somebody needs to step up, and there needs to be an alternative," Walsh said on ABC's "This Week." 

Yes, an "alternative." If only there were an "alternative" to Trump. Some. . . other candidate voters could choose, maybe someone from, oh, I don't know, maybe a different political party, or something? Maybe someone who presents a different platform and different policy approach. . .

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Oh, if only there was someone - anyone - willing to step up and say to the American electorate "You needn't stick with Trump for another term, I volunteer as tribute! You can vote for me instead, and I will serve as your president!"

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Why oh why can this nation of three hundred million people not come up with a single alternative to Donald Trump? If only some brave soul would come forward! But wait. . . there on the horizon. . . drawing ever closer, in a cloud of unpaid child support bills. . . Who is this dashing figure on a white stallion? Why, it's Joe Walsh! Riding in to save the day. Having had a taste of power, he now bravely attempts to leverage his newfound never-trump credentials into a quixotic White House run! Will this end with Walsh in the White House? Will our hero find himself with a book deal? Will our intrepid champion be given a shoe on FOX? Only time will tell what the end result of this act of selfless bravery will be!
Only one thing we know for sure. Joe Walsh is every bit as evil, racist, and dangerous as Donald Trump, he's just somewhat more professional about it. And he is not someone to root for.

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Outstanding work, USA Today Entertainment!

Yeah. . . that's not Leslie Jones.

This is Leslie Jones.

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What you got there is a Kate McKinnon.
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Easy mistake to make. I get the cast of Ghostbusters mixed up all the time. Like I can't tell the difference between Bill Murray and Ernie Hudson.

Monday, August 26, 2019

Here We Go Again

Another conservative has taken to the op-ed page to explain why it's not his fault that he's going to vote for Trump, we're leaving him no choice!


No one votes to be despised. If Democrats don't change their pitch, I may switch to Trump.

 Michael Smith, Opinion contributor,USA TODAY Opinio 

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God, is there really this much of a market for this genre of literature? The "I know Trump is an incompetent, senile, racist megalomaniac whose presidency threatens life on Earth, but the Democrats hurt my wittle feewings so I may be forced to vote for him" article seems to be the surest way to get published these days.

I am not a President Trump supporter. But if the alternative to him in next year’s election is open borders and the Green New Deal, I may become a Trump voter.

Okay, first of all, none of the Democratic Presidential candidates is advocating for open borders. Not a one of them. You have to know this. There is no way that someone who gets paid to write about politics doesn't know this. So you're already off on the wrong foot - we know you're a disingenuous weasel.
Secondly, are you seriously taking the position that a plan to address the climate crisis that threatens to make the planet unlivable is somehow more horrifying than 4 more years of Cheeto Mussolini?

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The president has earned a lot of the heat that comes his way. His reluctance to condemn the white nationalists at Charlottesville in 2017 was inexcusable. He questioned Barack Obama’s citizenship even after the man produced a birth certificate. His feuds with kneeling NFL players and other black celebrities serve no purpose except to stir the pot.

That's it? That's what you think is the problem with Orange Julius Caesar? You know he's putting children in concentration camps, right? Him being a racist dick kinda pales in comparison with taking children away from their parents and locking them in concentration camps.

The full list is long and ugly. It would speak for itself if Trump’s opponents would let it.

Yeah. . . no one is stopping the list from speaking for itself. We would add to your list his disastrous trade wars, his frequent suggestions that he can rule by executive fiat, his cozying up to murderous dictators and PUTTING CHILDREN INTO CONCENTRATION CAMPS, but we certainly aren't stopping his malfeasance from speaking for itself.

The full list is long and ugly. It would speak for itself if Trump’s opponents would let it.
They haven’t. Instead they’ve trafficked in hysteria and hyperbole, particularly in their response to the El Paso, Texas, shooting. Democrats fell over themselves to implicate the president’s rhetoric and policies. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez pronounced Trump “directly responsible” for the massacre because of his rhetoric.
Imagine. Having never met the gunman, the freshman congresswoman looked into his heart and determined that he wouldn’t have killed if not for Trump.

Gee, I wonder where she could have gotten such a wild idea? Why in the world would she place any responsibility for this mass shooting on Trump?
Hmmm. . . well, maybe it could be because of . . .

El Paso Shooting Suspect’s Manifesto Echoes Trump’s Language

At campaign rallies before last year’s midterm elections, President Trump repeatedly warned that America was under attack by immigrants heading for the border. “You look at what is marching up, that is an invasion!” he declared at one rally. “That is an invasion!”
Nine months later, a 21-year-old white man is accused of opening fire in a Walmart in El Paso, killing 20 people and injuring dozens more after writing a manifesto railing against immigration and announcing that “this attack is a response to the Hispanic invasion of Texas.”

Nah, that couldn't be it.
Probably she's just crazy!

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Its current trajectory gives the Democratic Party two problems in 2020. First, the agenda: a spending spree like no country has ever attempted, supposedly financed by a handful of wealthy taxpayers. What could go wrong?

You're right! We should totally stick with the plan of spending obscene, unimaginable amounts of money on maintaining a global military empire while constantly reducing the amount of tax dollars that flow into the treasury. That's just sound economic policy! Not some crazy pie-in-the-sky like having the people with the most money actually pay for the most necessary task our government has ever faced.It obviously makes more sense to give the people with the most money tax breaks, and just continue to finance everything with borrowing until a Democrat takes office. At which time, deficits magically become unsustainable once again.

Second, the message to voters. Progressives have long denounced America as hopelessly retrograde and racist. Naturally, they’re talking about everyone except themselves

See, now that's not rue either.
America is retrograde and racist, but not hopelessly so.
Hope springs eternal!
And certainly no Democratic candidate for President or any other office has ever claimed that she was. So, I don't know which voters are supposedly getting this "message," but it ain't coming from any of these folks.

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The insult-them-until-they-join-our-side strategy has gained devotees since the mass shootings. While at least seven presidential candidates have called Trump a white supremacist, the president's supporters don't want to be called the same simply for voting for Republicans.

Oh, that seems reasonable. Just because you voted for a blatant racist, continue to support that blatant racist, and intend to vote to re-elect that blatant racist doesn't mean that anyone should think you a racist!
Look, just because I wear a Giants cap and a 49ers hoodie doesn't mean you should assume that I'm a San Francisco sports fan!

The contempt descended into incoherence even before the shootings. Candidate Andrew Yang matter-of-factly predicts the disappearance of millions of low-skill jobs. Yet he and his party argue for essentially allowing millions of low-skill workers to enter the country without consequences.

Yeah, the problem of jobs being automated out of existence is a good reason we ahould send refugees back to the countries from which they fled in terror.

If you work in an industry likely to absorb some of that labor, you might wonder if this is how the Democrats plan to revive their brand as champion of the little guy. Are you the little guy they have in mind, or have you slipped a bit on their list?

And there it is.
The obligatory "democrats love brown people and not us whites" line. Or maybe it's more "Democrats love foreigners more than us real Americans," but either way, it's essentially the same appeal. It boils down to "Democrats care more about some 'other' than they do about us regular folks."  And you could make that point about many if not most Dems if the "other" you're referring to is the donor class of Wall Street and Silicon Valley, but you could definitely say that about 100% of Republicans.

Partisans who can’t imagine anything worse than losing history’s quintessential hold-your-nose election should picture coming to the rematch with a perfectly pleasant candidate, finding the opponent as nasty as ever, and losing again anyway.

Now that is actually a good point. We can NOT afford to repeat the mistakes of 2016. We can not put up another bland, inoffensive centrist, hoping that Trump's inherent detestability will will force voters to choose the only other viable option. That never works.

The swing voters who will decide the next election won’t care whether Democrats rate Donald Trump a racist or a white nationalist or a white supremacist. With the left’s favorite epithet flying around the political sphere more freely than ever, and the definition of racism facing possible expansion, they’ll want to know what Democrats think of them.

Oh, the swing voters! Yes, let's all grovel for the approval of the swing voters! Both of them.
here's the thing about the elusive swing voters. We don't need them. To the extent that they exist, we don't need them. If Democrats turn out their  base, they win. They did it in 2008 and 2012. The difference between 08/12 and 2016 wasn't that these supposed swing voters went for Trump. Trump got fewer votes than McCain or Romney got when they lost to Barack Obama. The problem was that Hillary Clinton got fewer votes than Obama did in either of those years.

The problem was that too many people didn't vote at all. And obviously, a lot of that was due to Republicans' various voter-suppression techniques. Of course that had a lot to do with it. But HRC just didn't excite the electorate the way that Obama did. It's not her fault, she just doesn't have that charisma. Well, it was partly her fault for saying that the things Democrats want, like single-payer healthcare and a $15/hr minimum wage were pipe dreams. That's just bad campaign strategy. And also ignoring the Rust Belt because your stupid fucking algorhithms say you don't need to isn't very smart electioneering either. But we're getting way off track here.

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Also, you say that the "swing voters" won't care if Democrats call Trump a racist?
Great. Trump's a racist.

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And I'm not sure what you mean by the definition of racism "facing possible expansion." Actually, I think I do know. You mean the definition of racism shouldn't include any views that you personally hold. You want the word racism to be defined as "cross-burning," or "waving the swastika flag" or whatever, so you can feel like you're not a racist when you support putting children into concentration camps.
So, you know what? You want to vote for Trump? Go right ahead. We don't need you. You don't matter. But don't try to blame us for your support of this racist bastard.

Confusing headline of the day

The ‘1619 Project’ Isn’t Anti-American — It’s Anti-White Identity Politics

It's honestly hard to tell what the headline-writer is trying to say here.
Is he saying that the 1619 Project is engaging in identity politics that are anti-white?
Or is he saying that the 1619 project is against "white identity politics?'

Is it  (anti-white) identity politics?
Or Anti- (white identity politics?)

Skimming the article, I'm pretty sure it's the latter, but come on New York Magazine Intelligencier. Surely you can do better than this.

Monday, August 19, 2019

A compelling argument

So, after yet a few more mass gun slaughters in Gilroy, Dayton and El Paso, some people had started getting the radical idea that hey, maybe allowing every nut, racist, and incel to buy any type of military-grade weaponry they want might not be the best idea after all! And talk has begun to circulate that maybe it isn't a coincidence that large gun massacres weren't a regular occurrence during the ten years that we had an assault weapons ban in place. And maybe we oughta think about maybe not having a bunch of assholes strutting around the aisles of Wal*Mart with sub-machine guns strapped to their backs? Even thought it might hurt their feelings?

Naturally, there are counter-arguments, as you would expect. For instance:

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TALLAHASSEE — Florida National Rifle Association lobbyist Marion Hammer warned state economists Friday that a proposed assault rifle ban would be devastating to gun manufacturers lured to the state over the last eight years.

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Wow! See, now, that's something I hadn't considered. I mean, just because your business model relies on your ability to sell weapons of mass murder to unstable angry white men is no reason that you should not stay in business, is it?

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Okay, I'm being told that. . . yes. Yes it is a good reason you should not stay in business.

You know, there's always unintended consequences. Like if we have a crackdown on heroin, just think of the deleterious effect on the drug cartels!

Hammer, speaking for the first time since back-to-back gun-related massacres in El Paso and Dayton two weeks ago, denounced the controversial amendment meant to address gun violence in Florida.
The amendment would ban the future sale of assault rifles in the Sunshine State and force current owners to either register them with the state or give them up.

Well, I guess I see why this law would be controversial.I mean, since the law would mandate seizing everyone's guns and criminalizing gun-owners, and. . . wait. . . what? You'd just have to register your AK? You'd still get to keep your massacre gun, you'd just have to register it? Like you should have to for every gun? That's it?

But Hammer said the proposed amendment doesn’t protect the more than 150 major gun manufacturers in the state, of which many produce weapons that would be outlawed by the ban.

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Sure, I mean, it might do something to protect children in schools. And Wal*Mart shoppers. And moviegoers. And concert attendees. And nightclub custoimers. But it does nothing -- NOTHING -- to protect the truly vulnerable. The poor, defenseless death merchants!

Those companies would be forced to move because they couldn’t possess any new assault weapons, she said. “If I were the owner of one of these firearm manufacturing companies, I wouldn’t wait to see what voters do,” she said. “If this were allowed to go on the ballot, I’d say, ‘I’m outta here.’”

And, were I a Florida resident, I would say "don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out!"

So, that's a pretty compelling argument for why we should take no steps at all to try and reduce the number of massacres that occur regularly in this dumbass country. But this next argument may be even more persuasive:

The NRA's top lobbyist in Florida argued against a proposed assault weapons ban, complaining that if the law passes, young children might not get rifles for their birthdays.
"How do you tell a 10-year-old little girl who got a Ruger 10/22 with a pink stock for her birthday that her rifle is an assault weapon and she has to turn it over to government or be arrested for felony possession?" asked Marion Hammer 

Wait, Marion Hammer?

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This is the same lady?
Holy crap, this woman is prolific! She should really be teaching dialectics at some Ivy League institution.

But, my fanboi-ing aside, let's look at her critical question here.

"How do you tell a 10-year-old little girl who got a Ruger 10/22 with a pink stock for her birthday that her rifle is an assault weapon and she has to turn it over to government or be arrested for felony possession?

Yeah, how do you tell her that?
I guess you could have her new foster parents explain it to her after she is removed from the home for her own safety?

I guess they could say something like "I know you think this is a neato toy, but your parents are complete psychotics and what they gave you for your birthday is actually a weapon of mass death. You know how there are soldiers who fight the bad guys. right? Well, honey, this is what those soldiers use to mow down dozens of bad guys in just a few seconds. Yes, that's right, sweetie. this machine creates dead people. Lots and lots of dead people. And it kills people whether those people are the evil terrorists, or whether they are children just like you who are just trying to go to school.
This might be a big grownup word, honey, but do you know what a  "psychopath" is? Yes, it's like a crazy person. A crazy person who likes to hurt people. That's very good. Well, only a psychopath would ever have a gun like this when he wasn't in a war zone. You understand, don't you, kiddo?"

And maybe you could show the little girl this Washington Post headline:

At least 265 people were accidentally shot by kids this year

I mean, if she's mature enough to handle a semi-automatic rifle, she ahould be mature enough to read the headline from a grownup newspaper, right?
And maybe you could explain to her that "you know, kiddo, if you were to accidentally shoot your brother with a bb gun, it would hurt. And he would probably cry. But he would be all right after we put a bandaid on it. But if you were to accidentally shoot your brother with an assault rifle, those bullets would tear through his flesh, shatter his bones, and leave gaping exit wounds that he probably wouldn't survive. You understand the difference, right?"

You know what, let me tell you a story. A few years back, a friend of mine bought his wife a set of multi-colored kitchen knives fro Christmas.

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He bought her nice things, too. He's not a dolt.

When he was wrapping up gifts for the family, he accidentally put his daughter's name on the to/from tag on the knife set. When his little daughter opened the box and saw all the pretty colored knives, she was thrilled. And my friend, not being stupid or insane, had to tell her "no, sweetie, you don't get to keep those. Those are for Mommy." I'm sure she was disappointed, but she fucking got over it. And last time I saw her, she still had all her fingers. Because that's what responsible parents do. They take dangerous things away from their children. So they don't hurt themselves or anyone else. Because they're children. And what kind of demented, unhinged psychotic gives a weapon of war to a ten-year-old?

This kind, I guess.

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Friday, August 16, 2019

Flashback Friday -- Charles Wright & the Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band

Until pretty recently, I only knew Charles Wright and the Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band for the song "Express Yourself,"

which I really mainly knew from NWA

 and I had always figured they were one of those one-hit wonders. Then I searched for him on Spoitfy and now I know better.

Thursday, August 15, 2019

We are ruled by sociopaths

Oh, capitalism! You are the best of all possible systems!

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Companies May Limit Life-saving Climate Data to Clients that Can Pay

Multi-billion dollar “climate services” firms are trying to cash in on the financial fear and insecurity prompted by changing weather

Yes, there's a new industry that has apparently sprung up recently. "Climate Services."
First, big business destroys the climate, poisoning the air we breathe and the water we drink for profit. Then, when the result of their "dark, Satanic mills" becomes impossible to ignore or pooh-pooh, more big businesses rush in to profit off of the misery the first group of businesses have caused.

Oh, and I suppose this little wrinkle should come as no surprise:

One of the industry’s leaders, a Silicon Valley executive named Rich Sorkin, made the case for climate services in May to the U.S. House Subcommittee on Environment. He argued that taking the big-picture climate science produced by federal agencies and turning it into hyperlocal threat assessments is a crucial and effective way for cities, states, companies and investors to better prepare for the climate emergency. 

Yes, the data which these leaches intend to sell to whomever can afford it in order to accumulate more and more wealth? It's production is paid for by us, the American taxpayers.

So we have to pay to produce this data because of the malfeasance of corporate America, and now corporate America is going to use this data to feather their own nests. And what do you, Joe taxpayer, get out of the deal?

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Nothing, unless you are one of the super-wealthy who can afford to have this customized data delivered to you so that you know when to leave your Malibu beach house and head for your Aspen ski villa.

Sorkin suggested that his risk-focused climate company Jupiter is uniquely suited to take on this job. “We believe the federal government should defer to the private sector in this area,” he said in a statement

Oh, really? What a fucking shock. You think the government should just stay out of the whole climate data business except for, you know, doing all the actual work of collecting all the data? That's what you think? Quelle surprise! Well, we believe that you, Rich Sorkin, should go fuck yourself!

Sorkin argues that companies like his—which is part of an industry that in 2015 was valued globally at US$2.6 billion with 6% to 10% growth per year—are nimble and innovative where government can be slow and cautious. “We’re years ahead of what the public sector is doing,” he says. 
In his statement, he likened Jupiter’s impact on climate science to the disruptive influence of Amazon, Microsoft and Google on supercomputing: “In nearly every case, the private sector is leading the adoption of these new technologies, driven by brutal competition for profits.”

Yeah, does anyone NOT hate Amazon? And Microsoft?
Fuck, any time one of these little startup assholes uses any form of the word "disrupt," they're talking about fucking things up, putting existing companies out of business, throwing people out of work to stuff the bank accounts of a few greedy sociopaths.
Saying "we're going to do for this sector what Amazon, Microsoft and Google have done for theirs" is like saying "i'm going to do for your church group what Jim Jones and David Koresh did for theirs!"

And for companies like his, those profits can be lucrative. Jupiter’s clients include players in oil and gas, insurance and defense. 

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Even industry leaders acknowledge the risk of a not-so-distant future where the wealthy and powerful have better information and tools for protecting themselves from the devastation of climate change than the poor and vulnerable.
“That’s a huge concern, and I’m certainly not going to pretend that we have the solution,” says Emilie Mazzacurati, the founder and CEO of Four Twenty Seven

"That is a huge concern, and I'm certainly not going to pretend we have any interest in addressing it," said the comic book supervillain.

“Scientists were saying, ‘We knew this could happen,’” Mazzacurati says. “[There was] a disconnect between the available data and projections around risks from climate change and the fact that those were not systematically integrated for most organizations.”

Okay so let me see if I git this straight. Scientists have been sounding a warning on climate change for years. Corporate America made a point of ignoring those warnings for fear it might cut into their short-term profits.  -- I'm sorry, I mean they "failed to systematically integrate those projections." --
Now that Corporate America has done irreparable damage to the planet, they are not being punished, they are being given a chance to access inside information, for which we all paid, to be able to mitigate the damage their greed and callousness have caused. Oh, but only to mitigate the damage done specifically to them and their bottom lines. And there is now an entire industry dedicated to ensuring that they will be able to minimize the risks to themselves while still contributing to the incipient catastrophe. Have I got that right?

Mazzacurati founded Four Twenty Seven after Hurricane Sandy devastated New York City in 2012. “What struck me most was the chaos that [an] extreme weather event could bring to one of the wealthiest, most organized, most resourceful cities in the world—and some of its most powerful businesses,” she later recalled

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Won't somebody think of the powerful businesses?

See, this is the difference between us normal people and the sociopaths that run everything. Most of us saw the devastation of Sandy and thought "oh, shit! There are people suffering. People losing their homes. This is horrible." Someone like Emilie Mazzacurati sees the same footage we all saw and thinks "Damn, I'll bet those powerful companies would pay big bucks for some sort of protection from the next storm!"

The longer I live, the more I realize that the rich and powerful have a strong tendency towards sociopathy. And it makes sense. If you want to succeed in business, if you want to make it to the top, it helps to have no compunctions about who you have to stab in the back to get there. So it's easy for executives to lay off workers. It's easy for politicians to cut people's healthcare or food stamps. It's easy for Presidents and Secretaries of State to order bombings and invasions. Because they don't care. They have no empathy. Or not enough to stop them from doing whatever they think will benefit themselves and further their career goals.

Look how many rich and famous names are popping up in the Jeffery Epstein case. Why, if you are a wealthy powerful man, would you need to have Epstein secure underage girls for sex? You can probably have sex with tons of consenting adult women. Pretty ones, even. I think that a lot of the rich and powerful are seriously damaged, disturbed people. Especially if they were brought up by wealthy, sociopathic parents.

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Exhibit A.

Why would someone like, say Bill Clinton, commit rape?
At the time, I was naive enough to think that he wouldn't because plenty of women wanted to have sex with him so why would he have to force himself on anyone? Now, I get it. That someone like Bill Clinton, someone who can get lots of women into bed, is exactly the kind of person who would do this. Because when a Paula Jones or a Juanita Broderick says "no, thanks. Not interested," the reaction isn't "oh, well, there's a million women who will!" The reaction is "who do you think you are to say no to me?"

Honestly, the whole world makes a lot more sense once you realize that we are ruled by sociopaths.

Friday, August 9, 2019

What are you complaining about, ya crybabies?

It used to be that when a young person complained about something, an old person would tell them all about how "you kids today have it easy. When I was your age, we had to walk ten miles to school. In the snow. It snowed every day back then, and if there wasn't enough snow, the city council would bring in snow machines from the local ski resort to make sure we had snow to trudge through. And shoes hadn't been invented yet! And after school, we would walk home through the snow, sip dome gruel, then go off to our jobs as coal miners. And we didn't have these fancy picks and shovels, we dug coal out of the mountain with our bare hands, and the foreman would stomp on our frostbitten toes if we didn't dig fast enough. And the TV only had three channels!"

But now, Marc Thiessen is taking it up a notch!

American millennials have a lot of complaints about their lot in life. So here’s a question for them: When is the last time you had to walk through a sewer waist-high in human filth, choking on the toxic ammonia, yet unable to cough for fear of alerting the Nazi SS soldiers on the street above — knowing that if you did, they would open a manhole cover and toss in grenades or poison gas to kill you?

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The fuck?

How is that your baseline?

Oh, you've got some complaints, have you? Well, just consider yourselves lucky that you aren't in literally the most dire circumstances humanly possible!

You have to worry that white supremacists might shoot up your school, your mall, your nightclub? Psshh! Are you wading through sewage while you worry about being shot by Nazis? No? Then quit your whining! You don't know how lucky you are!

You see a future in which our coastal cities are all under water? Well, they're not under sewage, are they? Then what is your fucking problem, you crybabies?

This is one of the weird  themes that conservatives return to again and again. The "at least you're not in this place that's worse" shibboleth. You object to the fact that there are a lot of states where a person can be fired for being gay? Well, you know, in Iran, they put gay people to death! You think it's wrong that women still don't have full equality in America? Hey, in Saudi Arabia, women aren't even allowed to drive! As long as some other place is worse, we need never address any societal problems here in the US of A. Well, except for football players kneeling during the National Anthem. Or television shows being disrespectful to Christianity. Or department store cashiers saying "happy holidays."

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Here in Warsaw 75 years ago, teenagers did exactly that. Last week, surviving members of the resistance gathered in the Polish capital to mark the anniversary of the Warsaw Uprising, when the underground Home Army rose up, freed the city from Nazi occupation and held it for 63 days.

In our colleges and universities, first millennials and now their Generation Z successors have demanded “emotional safety,” insisting on “safe spaces” and “trigger warnings” to protect them from ideas they don’t like

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Oh my God. here we go with the "safe spaces" crap again!
Why are the righties so obsessed with the idea of "safe spaces" and "trigger warnings?" As if they didn't create an entire news network to protect them from ideas they don't like!

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As if they didn't create an alternative to Wikipedia to protect them from facts they find troublesome.

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As if they hadn't re-translated the Bible to protect themselves from inconvenient theological teachings.

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. . . they tell us that “words are violence.” No, they are not. Violence is SS officers using flamethrowers to clear buildings. Violence is defenseless civilians being put in front of Nazi Panzers as human shields. During the Warsaw Uprising there were no “safe spaces” — battles were literally fought house to house, room to room. There were no “trigger warnings” — only Germans pulling their triggers as they executed civilians and prisoners of war lined up on street corners.

Okay. Yeah. And that Warsaw situation was objectively worse. Why does it sound like you prefer a scenario in which young people are being roasted by flamethrowers and crushed by tanks to one in which college professors give "trigger warnings" before discussing potentially troublesome topics?
Somehow, if a college literature professor says "this semester we'll be discussing Huck Fin and - trigger warning -  Huck uses the N-word a lot." this is more problematic to you than innocent people being slaughtered by Nazis?

I brought my kids — ages 17, 16 and 13-year-old twins — here to witness this. I wanted them to see with their own eyes what real adversity, sacrifice and heroism look like. I wanted them to put their fingers in the bullet holes that still mark the walls where the Nazis executed children their age. I wanted them to understand that these horrific events happened within the lifetimes of their immediate family, and that they must never take for granted the freedom, peace and security they enjoy.

Okay. That seems like a good idea. But I'm going to go ahead and assume that you gave them a warning first. A "trigger warning," as it were. You probably told them before you got to Poland that they were going to see some things that they would find disturbing. You didn't just say "hey, let's take a fun family vacation to Warsaw," and then when you got there go "hey kids. See those holes in the wall? Those are bullet holes from when the Nazis murdered children your age right here in this very place. Go ahead, stick your fingers in the holes the bullets made after passing through the bodies of terrified children!" Because if you didn't warn them beforehand, you're a fucking monster.

Monday, August 5, 2019

Not Helping

No, Atlanta Journal Constitution, "Tragedy" did not strike El Paso Walmart. Tragedy striking Walmart is Walmart being hit by a tornado. Or Walmart's roof caving in and crushing a bunch of people. Something for which no one is to blame. Tragedy did not strike the El Paso Walmart, a homicidal racist asshole struck the El Paso Walmart.

This kind of framing is not helpful. Treating gun massacres like natural disasters, as just one of the hazards of life like earthquakes in California or hurricanes in Florida is not helpful. It's whatever the opposite of helpful is.

This is what the NRA ghouls want. They want everyone to accept that mass slaughters are inescapable, that nothing can be done to prevent them, and that  your best bet is to arm yourself to the teeth so that you'll be ready to defend yourself when the unavoidable massacre inevitably comes to your mall or school or church.

So stop referring to these massacres as "tragedies." They are murders. Mass murders. And we absolutely CAN take steps to minimize them. If we have the collective will. And framing them as unfortunate catastrophes is not helping.