Wednesday Overnight Open Thread (3/29/17) W.O.O.T. Edition
The calendar says Wednesday. I believe it is the third Monday of the week.
Quotes of The Day
Problems are only opportunities in work clothes. Henry J. Kaiser
We're born alone, we live alone, we die alone. Only through our love and friendship can we create the illusion for the moment that we're not alone. Orson Welles
The more I see of men, the more I like dogs. Clara Bow
Good news on the medical front horizon. "Researchers at the University of Bristol and NHS Blood and Transplant have discovered a way to mass produce red blood cells."
In 1948, the Supreme Court ended the stranglehold Hollywood studios and distributors had on the U.S. movie market. Declaring the big eight a monopoly and ordering them to divest of their ownership of movie theaters and cease other non-competitive practices, with U.S. v. Paramount Pictures, et al., the Court opened the movie industry to independent producers and theaters, and indelibly changed the way we see films (and the films we see).
Moron contribution. A Moron submitted this to CBD and then onto The ONT. Thank you Moron contributor.
Are you thirsty for a beer? U.S. breweries top the 5,000 mark. Those are some awfully big cans.
The number of American breweries topped 5,000 for the first time last year, with craft beer makers accounting for 5,234 of 5,301 U.S. breweries, according to new figures from the Brewers Association.
Just five years ago, there were only about 2,000 U.S. craft brewers, which the Brewers Association defines as small or independent beer makers. Last year alone, more than 800 opened for business
March 29, 1959, Born on this day, Perry Farrell, Jane's Addiction, (1991 UK No.34 single 'Been Caught Stealing', 1990 US No. 19 album 'Ritual De Lo Habitual'), Porno For Pyros, (1993 US No.3 & UK No.3 self-titled album). Conceived US 'Lollapalooza' tours.
The ONT is not noted for its high brow art compared to the Mid-Morning Open Thread hosted by the lovely, gracious and talented CBD. Creative roommate goes artsy on
slob roomie. Prices are a tad bit high, but it's art after all.
If Donald Trump doesn't kill you: Spiders will. h/t ibguy
Children with imagination are no longer tolerated. F*cking 1st Runner UP Genius Award Winner.
The Selfie. Where would these girls be without them? Alive. Genius Award Winners. Stupid games have stupid prizes.
New Zealand has a better dental plan than the AoSHQ which of course is Tonight's Feel Good Story of The Day.
Tonight's ONT has been brought to you by Math.
Notice: Posted with permission by AceCorp, LLC. The Surgeon General is undecided if The ONT is hazardous to your health.
Close it up
Roger Daltrey: Hillary Clinton is a Smelly Old Corpse of a Whore Who Smells Like Dog Vomit and Also Let's Get This Brexit On, Bitches [Warden]
I may have taken a few liberties with the first part of that headline.
Also, Daltrey's support, it appears, is nothing new.
Well, whatever. Ain't like ace is stroking any checks for an Ace of Spades fact checking department. Let's just go with it and call these two data points--Johnny Rotten and Roger Daltrey-- a trend. Good enough for the New York Time's Lifestyle section; good enough for me.
The Who's frontman Roger Daltrey continues to be outspoken about his support for Brexit, or more like his support for England getting out of the EU. "We are getting out, and when the dust settles I think that it'll be seen that it's the right thing for this country to have done, that's for sure," he told NME.
He added, "I am not anti-European, but I am anti the present way we are being governed in Europe. "It's got nothing to do with any of the immigration issues or any of that for me. It was to do with much more. The majority of this country felt that their voices weren't being heard. It would have been nice to do a deal with Europe but they didn't want to do a deal, and they sent Cameron back with a bag."
Conservatism: The new face of rock 'n roll.
An Expression I've Come to Loathe [Warden]
An acquaintance of mine was recently diagnosed with cancer. As many people do today, he shared the news on Facebook so people outside his family and close friends would know what was going on with him. I always find this to be an awkward situation when I don't know someone well enough to pick up the phone and call, but do know them well enough to be saddened and concerned over the news.
Usually in these situations I'll either avoid commenting at all or tell the person that I'll pray for him and his family. And then, I always make sure that I follow through because I think it's an awful thing to just casually tell someone he'll be in your prayers when you don't really mean it.
I've spend more of my life as an agnostic than I have as a Christian and it's no big deal to me when other people don't pray, but there's a substitute expression that a lot of atheist/agnostic people fall back on that I positively despise: Sending good vibes your way.
The way I see it, if you think prayer is some sort of mystical hokum then how is it that you believe in "vibes" instead? What are these vibes? Can you see them? Can they be measured? And how, exactly, does one send them? Is it like ESP? Do you wave your fingers? Is there some sort of sacred incantation developed by the Celtic druids of yore?
See, here's what gets under my skin--I don't think that the people who write this line actually believe in vibes. It's a goofy, stupid idea, but they say it anyway because this grotesque, reproductive attempt at expressing belief in something greater and more powerful sounds good to them.
And so, yeah this is a get off my lawn moment, but goddamnit this world has enough phoniness in it without adding, in response to a man's likely death sentence, promises of such trite, nonsensical nature that there can't be any possible intention of keeping them.
I get it, it's awkward to respond sometimes. People want to say something kind and aren't sure how to go about it. But there are so many ways around that one phrase--"Thinking of you," for example, or "Please get well, we're all pulling for you."
Everything doesn't have to be an immediate, kneejerk, whatever-happens-to-come-to-mind response. There's room for pausing and giving thought to your words. And if there's ever a time to do it, it's when someone announces to you that his time of living may be very, very close to an end.
Related: Research reported in the Scientific Journal of No Freakin' Doy suggests that social media and shallow thinking may be linked.
Are You Ready for Flying Cars and Floating Skyscrapers?
Supposedly this flying-saucer shaped aircar -- fans mounted in the disc around the driver's "pod" -- and has been "estimated" to fly at 120 miles per hour.
All the pictures and videos appear to be mock-ups so I don't think this has been built yet. The article seems kind of elusive when it comes to directly stating that.
But that's not even the wild speculative news. We've seen dozens of "Flying Cars are Coming" articles.
The "Analemma Tower," so named because the designer keeps thinking "This is gonna get me so much ass," is planned to be hanged from a large mass -- an asteroid put in earth's orbit -- so that it traces a figure eight as the earth turns and moves through the sky over New York City and then Florida and Rio De Janiero and back again.
Yeah yeah, I know, it sounds crazy, and it'll never happen. For one thing, how do you actually get down to the earth to go to work?
NP, they've got you covered, fam: You parachute down to work. Every day, I guess!
How do you get back up? And how do you get back up when you're done with your working day in New York City, but now your home in the clouds has migrated south down to Cape Hatteras?
I don't know. I guess that's why you're gonna need the UFO car.
Nevermind the whole "we just need cables strong enough but also light enough to not fall under their own mass" problem is the reason we can't have nice things like space elevators.
Still, pretty mindblowing, just the idea of it.
Meanwhile, remember when the Progressive Internet Scientists all went berserk over a dumb video proposing that we make roadways out of solar panels, which can then produce electricity either to pump into into the cars driving on it or just to light up our cities?
And they were all like YEAH LET'S DO THAT?!
And remember when more sensible people who don't #LoveScience enough told them, "You're so dumb"?
And they said, "No, YOU'RE dumb, you #ScienceH8rs!"?
Well it turns out that they were, get this, dumb.
CNN "Debate:" Do You Agree That Obama Was Held to the Same Standard As Every Other President, Or Do You Agree That You're a Dirty Racist
I don't see how it can be seriously -- or even unseriously -- contended that Obama wasn't given an eight-year pass by the media partly owing to his race (and to be fair, his dogmatic progressivism), but apparently this is the sort of controversial racist heresy that gets you denounced on CNN.
CNN's programming is basically one step above Jerry Springer now. pic.twitter.com/u18DvUUUy3— Jimmy (@JimmyPrinceton) March 29, 2017
Close it up
Theresa May Triggers Britain's Exit from EU
Apparently this will happen in 720 days. I guess they have that much time to negotiate the terms of the ouster.
The EU -- mostly Germany, I imagine -- insists it will sign no separate trade agreement with a UK that has regained its full sovereignty. It will be treated as just another country, and have no more favorable trade status than, say, Iran.
The EU refuses a trade agreement -- which would be mutually beneficial to both the UK and EU -- because they want to make Britain's exit as painful for Britain (and for the EU, if necessary) to discourage the various other states to not follow the UK's lead.
The UK wants such an agreement, and suggests that if it doesn't secure one it may withdraw from security agreements it has with the EU. Which would compromise anti-terrorism efforts and, I imagine, might undermine NATO in the bargain.
May says "We should always put our citizens first" which sounds a little Trumpian, and I was going to make a the pull-quote of this article.
But I was disappointed to see that would be misleading. Actually, in context, she's arguing that Brussels (or really Berlin) and the UK have a responsibility to all their respective citizens, who would be harmed by a punitive, vindicative Brexit. She's not really declaring "UK First." She's just saying let's put aside hurt feelings, bruised egos, and this silly idea that the abstract idea of "Europe" is more important than the welfare of actual Europeans.
Meanwhile, the Scots, who voted against breaking from the UK partly because they wanted to remain part of the EU (Scotland has always sought European allies to balance the UK's power), now want a second vote for independence, and will explore "the next steps" in April.
This opinion piece argues that Scotland's independence is on weaker footing now than it was in 2014, because oil revenues (which help keep Scotland afloat) have dropped since 2014, when oil was $90 per barrel, and now is only $45 or so. Add into that Scotland's perpetual debts (subsidized by the UK), and Scotland just might not have the money to really stand on its own feet.
Excerpts from her formal notice to EU below:
On 23 June last year, the people of the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union. As I have said before, that decision was no rejection of the values we share as fellow Europeans. Nor was it an attempt to do harm to the European Union or any of the remaining member states.
On the contrary, the United Kingdom wants the European Union to succeed and prosper. Instead, the referendum was a vote to restore, as we see it, our national self-determination. We are leaving the European Union, but we are not leaving Europe -- and we want to remain committed partners and allies to our friends across the continent.
Earlier this month, the United Kingdom Parliament confirmed the result of the referendum by voting with clear and convincing majorities in both of its Houses for the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill. The Bill was passed by Parliament on 13 March and it received Royal Assent from Her Majesty The Queen and became an Act of Parliament on 16 March.
Today, therefore, I am writing to give effect to the democratic decision of the people of the United Kingdom. I hereby notify the European Council in accordance with Article 50(2) of the Treaty on European Union of the United Kingdom's intention to withdraw from the European Union.
This letter sets out the approach of Her Majesty's Government to the discussions we will have about the United Kingdom's departure from the European Union and about the deep and special partnership we hope to enjoy -- as your closest friend and neighbour -- with the European Union once we leave. We believe that these objectives are in the interests not only of the United Kingdom but of the European Union and the wider world too.
It is in the best interests of both the United Kingdom and the European Union that we should use the forthcoming process to deliver these objectives in a fair and orderly manner, and with as little disruption as possible on each side. We want to make sure that Europe remains strong and prosperous and is capable of projecting its values, leading in the world, and defending itself from security threats. We want the United Kingdom, through a new deep and special partnership with a strong European Union, to play its full part in achieving these goals. We therefore believe it is necessary to agree the terms of our future partnership alongside those of our withdrawal from the European Union.
That's the part that, to me, seems like a diplomatic way of saying "Be nice or we won't be nice."
Later the diplomatically-worded threat is repeated:
It is for these reasons that we want to be able to agree a deep and special partnership, taking in both economic and security cooperation, but it is also because we want to play our part in making sure that Europe remains strong and prosperous and able to lead in the world, projecting its values and defending itself from security threats. And we want the United Kingdom to play its full part in realising that vision for our continent.
We want that, if you're nice.
We should begin technical talks on detailed policy areas as soon as possible, but we should prioritise the biggest challenges. Agreeing a high-level approach to the issues arising from our withdrawal will of course be an early priority. But we also propose a bold and ambitious Free Trade Agreement between the United Kingdom and the European Union. This should be of greater scope and ambition than any such agreement before it so that it covers sectors crucial to our linked economies such as financial services and network industries.
Close it up
Pro-Life Activists Who Used Standard Media Technique of Undercover Sting Video to Expose Planned Parenthood Fetal Tissue Trade Indicted on 15 Counts
As Randy Barnett remarked (approximately), they told me if Trump were elected the machinery of the government would be turned against journalists, and they were right!
Sean Davis notes that such sting videos are routinely made in California, particularly by animal rights groups who surreptitiously record slaughterhouse workers, who are never prosecuted. Indeed, their sting videos spur the state to investigate crimes the targets of their sting videos might have committed.
David French's link (the first one) notes that California caselaw has limited the law against unconsented recording of a conversation to situations in which the target could have a reasonable expectation of privacy, and has specifically ruled it did not apply in situations like the one we find here (strangers meeting in a public place with no expectation the other party will keep their conversations private, discussing business in a manner they'd discuss business with with any other potential business partner).
But if you're pro-life? Well then. Now the state is coming after you with everything it has.
This cannot go on much longer. When you are this blatant about telling people that they will not have the protections of the law, that some favored groups are permitted to break what is supposedly "the law" while "the law" will be used vindictively against the state's enemies, then there is no "law" at all, and people will very soon stop acting as if there is.
When the state declares large swathes of people to be Enemies of the State, they also simultaneously make the state the Enemy of the People.
What cannot go on, will not.
Corrected: It wasn't Ilya Somin who'd used Instapundit's "and they were right" line, but Randy Barnett.
Massachusetts State Legislator Warns Illegals About a Planned ICE Raid
A Massachusetts lawmaker posted an online warning to illegal immigrants about an upcoming Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) "raid" in the area.
State Rep. Michelle DuBois (D) [shocker] suggested in a since-deleted Facebook post that undocumented immigrants in Brockton "stay off the streets" and not answer if someone unexpected knocks on the door.
She also included a phone number for anyone "picked up by ICE" to call to get legal services.
DuBois said she received a tip-off about the "raid" from a friend in the Latino community.
Social Justice Warrior High Commandant Anita Sarkesian Attacks Arch-Prog For Making Silly Joke About Being Attracted to Videogame Cartoon Character
The reason she attacked him for a disposable silly joke? Because the character he (jokingly) said he'd been aroused by (a purple cartoon fox called "Krystal," if I have this right) was "damseled" -- this is her cute term for "put in need of male assistance," like a damsel in distress -- and "trapped in a crystal," which is bad, because, I don't know, the Patriarchy wants to control women's bodies by trapping them in Space Crystals or something and she fears that finding a cartoon fox trapped in a space crystal sexually arousing might encourage men to trap women inside Space Crystals in real life.
Seriously, this was one of her tweets attacking this guy:
@femfreq She's LITERALLY trapped in a crystal. Finding a female character who is damseled and stripped of her agency arousing is kinda gross tbh.
We must not normalize the trapping of cartoon foxes inside Space Crystals, or something.
People are genuinely sick of this shit. We've had it up to our eyeballs with self-appointed priestesses scolding us for pretty much everything.
While these Immoral Priestesses demand that every woman's every single sexual choice be celebrated, they simultaneously demand that every man be made to wear a penile plethysmograph to make sure they're not experiencing any suspect blood flow to their members while thinking forbidden thoughts.
For sexual offenders [the penile plethysmograph] is typically used to determine the level of sexual arousal as the subject is exposed to sexually suggestive content, such as pictures, movies or audio, although some have argued that phallometry is not always appropriate for the evaluation of sexual preferences or treatment effects.
These anti-sex Jalverts aren't content just to hound you for your impure actions in real life. They are so zealous they they will chase you down for impure fantasies in your head.
And what authority do they have to do this? How have they gained any authority whatsoever to presume to Boner Shame people, except by asserting that they they have this authority?
Note to Anita Sarkesian and the rest of the Sex Repessive Maenads: You will not be allowed to control my body.
That's the language you idiots prefer, right?
More from Amy Alkon, who hints that the idea of dominating someone (or being dominated by someone) sexually is kind of such a widespread and harmless fantasy -- kind of vanilla, actually, which is why many knock Fifty Shades of Gray for not being as "edgy" as it pretends -- that it's a little shocking that this prudish witch Sarkesian hasn't heard of it.
Oh and just to remind everyone -- the guy who she's criticizing was joking, and I don't just mean "joking," I mean he was saying something that was obviously untrue and which he intended to be funny because it was so obviously untrue:
no offense but anyone who acts like they didn't jack off to Krystal from Star Fox Adventures is lying to you
-- Nick Robinson (@Babylonian) March 27, 2017
Hey, I didn't say it was a a good joke. I just said it was a joke.
Not only are you no longer permitted to have sexual thoughts which have not been pre-cleared as Sexually Permissible by Anita Sarkesian's Committee for Feminist Moral Hygiene, you're no longer even allowed to make jokes falsely claiming you've had such forbidden sexual thoughts.
Thanks to @zakn.
Bonous: I wonder what paroxysms Anita Sarkesian goes into when she hears Devo's Whip It. A woman is damseled by having a whip wrapped around her mid-section! It's so Control My Body I Just Can't Even Any More.
Bonous: Anna Puma mentioned that there is "Krystal" cosplay. Here's a video of this sexy, sexy cartoon fox.
Trump Wants Wall Funding Included In Must-Pass Stopgap Spending Bill; Republicans Cool to the Idea
Trump wants to add the wall's funding to this because the bill must pass, otherwise, the government shuts down.
Republicans are cool to this idea, because they don't want to risk Democrats voting against the bill and shutting the government down (for some reason, Republicans get blamed when Democrats shut the government down), and because they don't actually want to fund the wall they authorized in 2006 and have been promising now for 11 years.
Too Little And Too Late Edition: Is France Awakening From Its Slumber?
French Poll: 61 Percent Say Islam Is Incompatible With Their Society, and yet they will not vote for the one candidate who will do something about it. Poll shows Macron win in French election in shadow of 'Penelopegate'.
France will fall to the Muslim invasion, which seems likely, or it will have a social upheaval reminiscent of the Jacobins' Reign of Terror. But I doubt that; the French have been emasculated by the EU, by their own elites, and by careful and concerted pressure from the Arab world. There is plenty of oil money in Paris, and the French have always been comfortable with that brand of Islam. But there is a difference between the elegant Arab businessman in his bespoke suit --he is the scout -- and the backward, ignorant, violent 6th century infantry that has arrived in France.
Unfortunately the French didn't notice until it was too late.
Planned Parenthood gets upset when impudent prolifers expose their charnel houses and threaten their revenue stream. Fortunately for PP, its allies in California government are more than willing to do them a solid:
On Tuesday, the state of California charged David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt of the Center for Medical Progress on 15 felony counts over their undercover reporting regarding Planned Parenthood. In 2015, Daleiden and Merritt released video showing high-ranking Planned Parenthood members joking about selling baby body parts for market rates and picking through baby body parts in order to demonstrate which sorts of body parts were available for sale for medical research, as well as talking about the best methods of abortion for procuring those baby body parts. The California Department of Justice, under the auspices of now-Senator Kamala Harris, raided Daleiden’s home for footage in April 2016
The charges have to do with California laws governing taping private conversations and whether you need to get permission of both parties.
Apparently, the state's position is that a conversation in a public restaurant constitute private and confidential communication which is protected by these laws. Now, to normal people, this sounds ludicrous on its face and I hope Daleiden and Merritt will find a normal judge who agrees, but this is Democrat-controlled California, where the purpose of law is to not to enforce impartial justice but rather is a tool for progressives to punish their enemies.
For those of you morons who are believers, I encourage you to pray for Daleiden and Merritt. Their witness against the horrors perpetrated by Planned Parenthood has pissed off some very powerful people who will use whatever means they have at their disposal to destroy them. Fortunately, they worship a God who is greater than Moloch.
Meanwhile, according to the ABC-TV affiliate in Chicago, undercover video shows alleged animal cruelty at California poultry farms, slaughterhouse. No word yet on if the reporters covering this story would be subjected to criminal charges for secretly recording the videos that formed the basis for this story.
Mid-Morning Open Thread
The Morning Report 3/29/17
Good morning, kids. Well, as the dust continues to settle on last week's RynoCare debacle, cooler heads seem to be prevailing and PDT is determined to move forward with a repeal/replace bill. In fact some reports indicate that Rand Paul and Mike Lee among others really have the President's ear, which is good news. Always a big fan of Roger Kimball and he wrote an eloquent essay about Mo Brooks' one-sentence repeal (linked here and below):
Politicians may or may not wish to repeal ObamaCare; those that do also wish to replace it, i.e., promulgate some other "government program," i.e., opportunity for graft, influence-peddling, regulatory imposition, etc. Mo Brooks, on the contrary, seems to entertain the deeply heterodox idea of simply getting rid of the Leviathan.
I think Brooks's chances of success are approximately zero. But then some very smart people (I know they are smart because they told me so themselves) told me that Donald Trump could never, ever be president. The whole idea was ridiculous, beneath consideration, and a distraction from the serious business of maintaining the status quo, which no one says he likes but which an awful lot of people are doing very well out of, thank you very much.
The key takeaway, at least for me, is it's still early, and PDT is virtually surrounded on all sides by enemies. Conventional wisdom dictates that if he doesn't get the repeal or tax cuts in the first 100 days it's over. But, as Mr. Kimball reminds us, Donald Trump is unlike any president in our history, so conventional wisdom is out the window. He's managed quite a bit already so let's give it time. Aside from this, the big story is the coming storm over Neil Gorsuch, the evisceration of the Obama EPA energy regulations, sanctuary city sedition and the disintegration of the Democrat Party which is being completely embargoed by the propagandists. Anyway, lots'o'links from around the world, across the nation and up your street. Have a better one and remain blessed.
- Mass. Sheriff Calls for Arrest of Sanctuary Cities' Leaders
- Repeal Reset: PDT Talks Up New Healthcare Deal Coming Soon, BUT . . .
- . . .Renewed Effort Still Faces the Same Conflicts
- Roger Kimball: Is Mo Brooks Our Lord Brougham?
- Geller: Why Trump Is Failing
- Showdown Over Gorsuch; Dems Expected to Filibuster But Will McConnell Turn Turtle?
- Bipartisanship Alert: DNC's Perez to Oppose PDT on Everything Except Public Option
- Killing Them Softly: Mass Firings at DNC Go Virtually Unnoticed by Media
- Rockville Illegal Alien Rapist's Lawyer Uses Hillary Tactics: Smear the Victim
- Anti-Abortion Investigative Journalists Hit With Felony "Invasion of Privacy" Charges in, Where Else, California
- Sleazy, Unappealing Dipsomaniac, Who Will Never Be President, Opens Cake-Hole and Attacks PDT
- Oh No! Spicer Behaves Like Big, Fat Meany Doody-Head to Poor April Ryan
- Dunning-Kruger Alert: Libs Demand EPA Chief Pruitt "Sit Down" with Bill Nye to "Get Educated"
- Homegrown SJW Taliban Seeks Destruction of Confederate Monuments
- Tubby Riefenstahl Blathers PDT EPA Rollback Death Sentence on Humanity, or Something
- Insane: Italy Mulls Paid Menstrual Cycle Leave
- Sane: Belarus Imposes "Social Parasite Tax" on Welfare Layabouts
Tuesday Overnight Open Thread (3/28/17) It's Only Tuesday - Fingers Crossed Edition
Quotes of The Day
“Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe.”
― Albert Einstein
“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson
“I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.”
― Thomas A. Edison
At 4 a.m. on March 28, 1979, the worst accident in the history of the U.S. nuclear power industry begins when a pressure valve in the Unit-2 reactor at Three Mile Island fails to close. Cooling water, contaminated with radiation, drained from the open valve into adjoining buildings, and the core began to dangerously overheat
Today was National Something On A Stick Day. The ONT is hoping that you didn't skewer your boss. Just hopin'.
Men are women. Women are men. Some men don't have a gender. Some women don't have a gender. Now rivers are people. That's right, rivers are people.
The ONT can't make this shit up. Truth is stranger than fiction.
Just days after New Zealand declared the Whanganui River a legal person, the world’s population of river people (not people who live on the river, but rivers who are people) tripled, when a court in India waved its judicial wand and transformed the Ganges and Yamuna rivers:
[T]he Rivers Ganga [Ganges] and Yamuna, all their tributaries, streams, every natural water flowing with flow continuously or intermittently of these rivers, are declared as juristic/legal persons/living entities having the status of a legal person with all corresponding rights, duties and liabilities of a living person ….
The United States has long been the global leader in resettling refugees, strictly defined as people forced to flee their home country to escape war, persecution or violence. Since October 2001, more than 895,000 refugees have settled here, typically after being referred by the United Nations and vetted by the State Department in a process that takes at least 18 months. (By comparison, a million or so legal immigrants arrive annually.)
All major meteor showers, as seen from space. Pretty cool!
I'm a man. But I can change. If I have to. I guess. Might as well recite the Man's Prayer inside the Masculinity Booth.
A STUDY has shed light on the worst thing men can do in bed — and it seems women are united in hating this unattractive habit.
This new report, titled Do Women’s Orgasms Function as a Masculinity Achievement?, reveals some interesting insights into heterosexual relationships.
The paper explores how “masculine” men feel after making their partner orgasm, and reveals how men can hijack a woman’s big moment to inflate their own ego
When Californian’s went to the polls this November to approve the legalization of marijuana for personal use, little did they realize it would morph into a battle between unions and business.
The state is now slated to begin distributing licenses to marijuana businesses on Jan 1, 2018. Therefore, the Golden State’s legislature is attempting to iron out discrepancies between the already existing medical marijuana rules and the approved ballot measure.
The crux of the disagreement between the Teamsters union and business groups is deciding who is in charge of pot distribution.
March 28, 1981, Blondie started a two week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with 'Rapture', the group's fourth US No.1 and the first No. 1 song in the US to feature rap and its lyrics, notable for name-checking hip-hop pioneers Fab Five Freddy and Grandmaster Flash. via thisdayinmusic.com
March 28, 1954, Born on this day, Reba McEntire country music artist and actress who has scored 35 No.1 singles and released over 25 albums. Sometimes referred to as "The Queen of Country", she has sold more than 70 million albums worldwide as well as starring in her television sitcom, Reba for which she was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Performance in a Television Series–Musical or Comedy. via thisdayinmusic.com
Weird laws from around the world. Could be considered NSFW, so there is that.
The most iconic product for each state. Is yours correct? Mine is.
Somethings just go together. Bacon and eggs. Gin and tonic. Democrats and hypocrisy.
Democratic U.S. senators are considering denying Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch a floor vote by filibustering his nomination. Yet it was only a few months ago that Senate Democrats declared anything less than an up-or-down vote on a Supreme Court nominee a failure to perform the Senate’s constitutional duty.
Will these senators stay true to their word and allow a vote on Neil Gorsuch?
In the 1500s The Catholic Church involved in the art/pron debate.
I Modi (The Ways) is best known as The Sixteen Pleasures, an illustrated sex guide published by Marcantonio Raimondi in 1524. Based on paintings by Giulio Romano, The Sixteen Pleasures carries the proud boast of being the first work of pornography banned by the Catholic church. For his gross indecency, Raimondi was imprisoned by Pope Clement VII. All copies of the book were destroyed. Romano got away with it. And so began a long debate whether art and porn can ever be the same thing?
The "Boy Socialist of Oakland", Jack London. Jack London's political views and writing.
Jack London was no philosopher, nor did he aspire to be. In both fiction and nonfiction, he sought to observe the world around him closely and to describe what he observed accurately, concretely, and in detail. London’s devotion to close observation and to accurate description of the concrete informs his best fiction. In stories such as “To Build a Fire” and “War,” London shows us in detail the material world in which and of which we are. His observations of the material world also tell us about the psychological and emotional dimensions of his characters. The prophetic aspect of The Iron Heel is best understood as a result of the same materialistic habit of thought. By disciplined and relentless attention to detail, and a corresponding avoidance of intellectual abstractions, London could discern the shape of coming events. He needed neither a Christian God nor a Hegelian History to analyze the dynamics of his society.
Do you think authors are perfect at grammar? Perfect spellers? F. Scott Fitzgerald, wasn't.
F. Scott Fitzgerald was an amazing writer, but his spelling was, according to one of his editors, "lamentable."
Do you have something you wish to share with The ONT? ONT tips, loose change or that sock without its match can be sent here. Or here at petmorons at g mail dot com.
Forget where your child is? Sure, you call the cops when you're the Co-Genius Award Winner.
Here, watch this. Co-Genius Award Winner.
An American Hero and Tonight's Feel Good Story of The Day.
Tonight's ONT has been brought to you by Subliminal Suggestions.
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Open Thread With Sundry Items of Limited Interest
A silly gainzzz thread on MSN tells you how to keep off all the Trump Presidency Weight that progressive dopes are gaining.
Three burglars broke into a home. This home included valuable things. It also included someone with an AR-15.
With just a bit of persuasion and firepower, they were successfully reformed from dangerous criminals into law-abiding dead bodies.
I saw a tweet earlier which I did not understand because I hadn't seen this story yet. It was someone shrieking that this wasn't "self-defense," it was "murder" in the defense of mere property.
VDH notices something no one in the media has -- it seems the Democrat Party has been pro-Russia since 1972, and yet the media previously always thought that was a pretty good position to take.
If it's now illegal to have a dovish position on Mother Russia, than man, do we have some retroactive prosecutions to get to. And yeah, I'll trade Trump for every Democrat operative, lobbyist, and agitator alive. Put them all in prison. We'll make Trump's cell luxurious and with gold bars so he doesn't mind so much.
This article complains about the so-called "Pink tax" of higher prices charged for goods sold specifically to women. Check out the picture at the bottom of the article.
Maybe they've changed it -- for me, it was a picture of 1950s blacks sitting at a lunch counter -- I assume in protest of Jim Crow laws. Not sure that pink razors costing an extra nickle a blade quite rises to the Selma All Over Again level.
And the below video is just too cute. A little girl has mistaken a broken water heater, put out for the trash, for a robot.
This little girl thought a broken water heater is a real life robot. It's just not fair how cute it is pic.twitter.com/TLbuKKEEbY— Ben Tolmachoff (@bentolmachoff) March 27, 2017
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John Lydon (aka Johnny Rotten): Media Is "Smearing" Trump Because They Fear Him
Of all the things I did not see coming, this is one of the I did not see this comingest.
Oh, and then he said Nigel Farage was "fantastic" and that he supports Brexit.
"In my past I’ve had that accusation thrown at me willy nilly and it's a damn hard one to have to listen to and endure -- make sure it's right," Lydon added.
"There's a terrible attitude in left-wing politics -- they just feel they have the pomposity and right to just throw these accusations out without any evidence -- well don't because my world requires facts."
"For the next week and a half the rag-and-bone trade that we call the media is going to be calling me a racist, that’s the tomfoolery of it all. That's going to be damn upsetting all over again to my grandkids, is'’t it?"
Oh, and I looked it up: A rag-and-bone trade man is, or rather was, a guy who would go door-to-door buying unwanted household goods -- crap -- in order to sell it to people whose unwanted crap is actually even crappier.
I think that's a pretty good way to describe the media.
He's kind of a Trump voter -- a former Obama supporter, defining himself (very loudly) as working class, who seems to have flipped.
The former Sex Pistols frontman was speaking to ITV News when he stated: "The working class have voted and I support them. Let it be a nice exit. A truly brilliant British exit."
"One journalist once said to me, is he the political Sex Pistol? In a way," he said.
"There are many, many problems with him as a human being but he's not [racist] and there just might be a chance something good will come out of that situation because he terrifies politicians."
That article notes that last year, he was anti-Brexit and also thought Trump was one angry synapse away from starting World War III. He called him a "wrong 'un."
In the video in the second article I linked, he explains that while he moved to America because of Obama, "that doesn't mean I'm going to follow him to the grave" and says that politics is all "roundabouts and swing-abouts" or some other such British nonsense which I assume has something to do with pendulums swinging too far in one direction.
A little more from this interview with him from French outfit AFP. I would link the English version but I can't fine one.
"I think from time to time, the world needs a shake-up. Passivity always winds up getting what it deserves[."] Trump is "the kind of kick in the ass the people seem to need."
[John Lydon] understands the economic "dispair" and shares a deep mistrust of politiicans in office. "The idea of continuing on with the same policies without changing anything, that's all done now," he declares. "It's now been two or three generations wallowing in apathy, silly beards and dunce-caps. They look like each other, they all talk the same way," he says. "There's no spirit, which winds up being very negative and that opens the door to Donald Trump."
Whoops -- I did find this (cached) English version of what he really said.
I wondered why they said "dunce caps." Turns out, they couldn't figure out how to translate what he'd said:
"We've had a couple of generations now that loved to wallow in apathy and silly beards and daft gray tea-cozy hats. They all look the same, they all talk the same," he said.
I guess bonnets idiots meant "idiotic hats" and not "dunce caps" (which was my guess, which I see was wrong).
These are tea-cozy hats. My stars. They're probably wearing them here, too. And I'd probably know that if I ever, you know, saw people.
Kind of interesting -- Overton Window, tipping point, etc.
Forgot the Obligatory Link: The Sex Pistols said it so well 40 years ago.
Sean Spicer Tells Agenda-Soaked Progressive Troll April Ryan She Has an Agenda; Her Agenda-Filthy "Reporter" Sisters Line Up to Defend Her
April D. Ryan was one of the few people in the world actually impressed by Rachel Maddow's Trump-taxes debacle -- she eagerly seized on the (silly) idea that because Trump's income in 2005 was only $250 million (before a $100 million write-down), that means he's clearly not a billionaire 12 years later.
She had previously covered herself in glory by getting into a public spat with her former friend Omarosa Manigault (of Apprentice infamy, and I can't believe that yeah, she's now at the White House) and then claiming that Omarosa had "intimidated" her.
So obviously, she's agenda-free.
While Spicer was trying to
explain mansplain to her something her female brain just couldn't grasp, she kept shaking her head to refuse the mansplanation before he could manclude his pungent, musky manswer, and he told her to stop womanshaking her head -- a vicious, sexist pre-emptive shejection of Sean Spicer's Personal Truth -- and that her femmegenda was obvious.
Video of the heated sexchange below.
I don't know why I'm writing like this either. I'm trying to mantertain myself. It's very himpowering.
Bonerous Link: MRC has more of April D. Ryan's fembarrassing vagenda.
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No, Devin Nunes Should Not Recuse Himself
I can't add anything because I don't want to. While I understand that this job is to comment on the day's news, and can't fault Harsyani for doing his job, I personally am having a lot of time even taking this nonsense seriously.
Is this really "news"? Again, not knocking Harsyani for working up the energy to deal with nonsense.
But I'm really feeling kind of exhausted at having to even pretend that the Democrats' unending firehose of bullshit is genuine "news" that anyone at all should even have to entertain.
For example: The Democrats are now making an issue of the fact that Nunes received something that looks like a leak (though possibly a legal one -- Nunes said the source went through proper procedure), and doesn't want to specify exactly what he saw. Probably because he wants to protect his source -- if it's known exactly what documents Nunes saw, it doesn't take a lot of legwork, I'm thinking, to figure out who had access and did in fact access those documents recently.
But wait -- isn't this what the media and the Democrats themselves do to push the "Russia hacked the election with Trump's help" story every single day?
"Calls Grow for Nunes to Step Aside in Inquiry on Surveillance," says The New York Times. "The remarkable calls," it goes on to say, "by Representatives Adam B. Schiff of California, the committee’s top Democrat," came after revelations that Nunes had met a source at the White House. Democrats claimed that a "bipartisan investigation" could no longer be achieved.
For starters, the idea that Schiff isn’t a full-blown partisan is preposterous. He’s already made a number of wild and irresponsible claims about Russia "hacking our election."(The California representative contends to have
conclusiveevidence of collusion, though he's yet to share the specifics with the group.) There is no reason to treat him like the guardian of a chaste investigation. Others who went on the record to demand recusal were nonpartisan public servants like Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer.
The reason Harsyani struck through "conclusive" is, I imagine, because Harsyani mis-remembered Schiff as claiming "conclusive" evidence. If so, I know why Harsyani remembered it that way -- because when I heard Schiff talking about this, that is the impression I got. It was only later, reviewing what he said, that I saw he had left himself wiggle room here.
But he conveyed that impression, at least to someone hearing it the first time. At least to me he did.
Anyway, Schiff is claiming he's seen "evidence" that he himself won't share, while simultaneously claiming Nunes must recuse himself for making less sweeping claims and not giving up the source of those claims.
How seriously am I supposed to take this?
How seriously is anyone supposed to take this?
(Parallel thoughts were expressed by Warden, last night.)
Every single day, the Democrats and media get together and decide what the day's Microcycle Narrative Attack on Trump will be. Every single day we're supposed to treat these concocted #FakeNews fictions as matters of grave concern.
For the first time in my adult life, I am using this expression non-ironically -- "I just can't even anymore."
Journalists: We're So Tired and Our Work-Loads Are So Hard Due to Covering Trump. Yeah, hourly EST therapy primary screaming will do that.
How do you think the rest of us feel due to your temper tantrums and lies?
What I'm hearing more and more from journo friends is covering the Trump admin is not sustainable in terms of work load. Everyone exhausted.— Yashar (@yashar) March 28, 2017
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By Promoting False Narrative of Rising Anti-Semitism Due to Trump Victory, Media Created the Very Incentives for the JCC Hoaxers to Make Their Threats
Police sources told Haaretz that the [Israeli-American teenaged JCC bomb hoaxer's] main goal appears to have been obtaining media coverage. He had been making bomb threats for at least two years, against a wide variety of targets in several different countries, and after every such threat, he would monitor the media. If the threat didn’t provoke much response, he would lose interest in that target and try again somewhere else. But if the threat did create a media stir, he'd start targeting similar institutions in the same general locale in the hope of producing a similar media buzz.
For most of the last two years–during which he threatened targets like shopping malls and airlines, as well as Jewish institutions in countries like Australia, New Zealand, and America–his threats produced little media coverage, so he didn't repeat them. But after Trump's election, he suddenly hit pay dirt. Threats against U.S. Jewish institutions fit right into the American Jewish community's loudly proclaimed narrative that the election had empowered right-wing anti-Semites, epitomized by Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt’s ludicrous assertion that U.S. anti-Semitism was now at a level unseen since 1930s Germany. Moreover, such threats fit right into the broader left-wing narrative that Trump’s election had empowered white supremacists, racists and other right-wing hate groups.
Consequently, whereas anti-Semitic acts received little media coverage during President Barack Obama's tenure, they suddenly began receiving massive media attention following Trump's election–not just in America, but worldwide. The result, given the teen’s longstanding modus operandi, was inevitable: For the past few months, the Israeli police sources said, he has focused all his energy on threatening Jewish institutions in the U.S., because he knew that would create the media outcry he wanted.
There's more, too: Obama never pushed for an escalation in the investigation, even though most of this happened under his watch. Trump did, and pushed additional resources into the probe, and caught the guy.
Jeff Sessions Warns Sanctuary Cities That Their Federal Funds Could Be Cut
But this might be more bark than bite -- the feds' ability to force state law enforcement to enforce federal laws is limited.
This might be one of those times we regret federalism.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions fired a broadside at so-called "sanctuary cities" Monday, telling reporters local policies of noncooperation with immigration authorities are "dangerous" and will cost communities federal funding.
In the Trump administration's most pointed warning yet, Sessions said federal law allows withholding of federal funding to sanctuary cities, and signaled that such measures will soon be taken. Sessions, who took the podium at White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer's regular media briefing, warned of a pending crackdown by the administration.
"Such policies cannot continue," he said. "They make our nation less safe by putting dangerous criminals back on the street."
The sanctuary cities are threatening to wage a fight in court, so determined are they to keep their criminals. (Note that this does relate only to criminals - state law enforcement officials would not have non-criminal illegals in their custody.)
Meanwhile, the father of the illegal immigrant who allegedly raped the 14 year old girl in Maryland (which is doubling down on becoming the first sanctuary state) has been arrested by ICE. He's also, of course, illegal. I guess that makes his rapist son a "DREAMER."
He dreamed of raping little girls, I guess.
Oh, and the media continues pumping out stories attempting to portray those being deported as nice people caught up in a rotten system. The guy the New York Daily News tries to present in a favorable light is an illegal who was arrested by ICE at a court appearance for misdemeanor assault, who has a "long rap sheet" in addition.
Didn't Obama promise to "prioritize" deporting criminal illegals? I don't remember progressives crying then -- I guess that's the difference between executing some enforcement and insincerely promising some enforcement while actually making America a Sanctuary Country.
AoSHQ Celebrates International
Women's Wymynz Day
So International Women's Day (and you can always tell it's a rat bastard commie holiday because it starts with the word 'International') was yesterday, or last week, or some damn thing, and that's a holiday that we all celebrate here at the HQ. So without further ado...
Open thread, brought to you by the evil patriarchy.
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Mid-Morning Open Thread
There is something sad and era-ending about these scenes. Fighting ships seem to have hearts and minds, at least the romanticized version of them that lives in the hearts of the men who fought on them.
JMW Turner has always intrigued me. His scenes of the sea are best seen in person -- they don't have the impact on the small screen. But he also confuses me. This painting has me thinking that the sky is the subject, and the ship just happened to wander in to the scene...
The Morning Report 3/28/17
Good morning, kids. Lots of link-fu today. Top story still remains the Obamacare debacle and how next to proceed. We go from the orgasm-inducing (yet highly unlikely to succeed) blunt force trauma of Mo Brooks' one sentence full repeal to an essay on how entitlements are as American as heroin-laced apple pie. In any case, the noises coming from the administration about PDT now dealing with Democrats are not filling me with strength and confidence. Other than that we have the usual selection of outrages du jour for your dining and dancing pleasure from around the world, across the nation and up your street. Unfortunately, we've had to suspend the beautiful opening credits as they seem to be causing havoc with browsers. Hope to fix that soon as they do lend an air of class to this joint, n'est ce pas? Have a better one and remain blessed.
- Less Is Mo: Alabama Rep. Brooks Files One-Sentence-Long Obamacare Repeal Bill
- What Now for Obamacare? Spoiler Alert: Your BP May Rise After Reading This
- Rush: PDT Democrat Outreach Means Advancing Their Agenda, Not His
- PDT Signs EO Rolling Back Obama Economy-Killing Climate Regulations
- Podesta Brother Tony Made $500Gs Lobbying for Chi-Com Firm Convicted of Illegal Sales to Iran
- Illegal Alien Father of Illegal Alien Maryland Teen Rapist Arrested by ICE
- AG Sessions Promises Sanctuary Cities Will Be Punished
- Classless Chuck Schemer Goes Off on Joseph Califano, Wife in Swanky NYC Eatery
- $200 Trillion Debt Explained: "Mr. Social Security" Convicted in Massive SSDI Fraud Scheme
- Chutz-Pocrizy Alert: Chris Coons Sez GOP Using Nuclear Option to Confirm Gorsuch Would Be "Tragic"
- Swamp Still Swampy: Obama Point Man on Iran Sellout STILL at State Department
- Pipeline Protestors Plan to Do to Louisiana What They Did to North Dakota
- Record-Breaking $540+ Billion in State and Local Property Taxes Collected in 2016
- Man's Last Name "GRABHER" Deemed Too Offensive for Vanity Plate
- Fiend Behind 2001 Sbarro Pizza Kamikaze Bombing Still Living it Up in Jordan; Over to You, King Abdullah
Coming later today . . .
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Monday Overnight Open Thread (3/27/17) So This Is Monday Edition
Quotes of The Day
Happiness and moral duty are inseparably connected.
-- George Washington
Imagine choosing a job not on money or even on career advancement, but as part of a life worth living. Dale Dauten
Recession is when a neighbor loses his job. Depression is when you lose yours. Ronald Reagan
2 certain things in life, death and taxes. Make that 3 things, death, taxes and debt in the afterlife. Average Americans dying with debt.
These days, not even the dead are debt-free.
A new report from Credit.com has found that 73 percent of U.S. consumers are dying with large amounts of debt to their name — to the average tune of $61,554.
Everyone (or so it seems) in the educational field say you make more money if you have a college degree. (The ONT will put up a master plumber to any gender studies grad any day of the week. But, we digress.) Are you a sex worker. Sex workers make more with a college degree.
Economists Scott Cunningham and Todd Kendall conducted an extensive survey of female sex workers in 2009. They asked detailed demographic questions as well as gathered details about the women’s clients, work patterns, and pay. They estimate that college-educated sex workers are less likely to work than their less-educated counterparts in any given week. But when they do work, they earn about 12% to 13% more. College educated sex-workers see more clients and book longer sessions. They charge slightly less on an hourly basis, but the volume and nature of their services means they end up earning more.
The feel good story of the day. The couple from Hell. Trying to make it-again.
After years of public humiliation by her sext-a-holic husband, Anthony Weiner, 40-year-old Abedin finally separated from the former congressman in August, one day after The Post reported that he had sent yet another explicit photo to a woman — this one showing his toddler son asleep beside him.
But sources tell The Post that Hillary Clinton’s righthand woman is now giving the marriage another try.
Is it time to do away with the Indian Reservation? All casino jokes aside, a good question.
The idea of "reservations" may have made sense 150 years ago, but by now we are all Americans, and the idea of separate "reservations" for different kinds of Americans smacks of paternalism and racism.
We should do away with reservations. And if liberals object, I would give the Indians back Manhattan, as a form of reparation.
March 27, 2015, Country singer Willie Nelson announced that he and his family were hard at work on a new brand of marijuana called Willie's Reserve. Stores of that same name were being planned and were to include his signature brand and other strains that would be grown to meet quality standards. via thisdayimusic.com
1970, Born on this day, Mariah Carey, singer. Carey is named after 'They Call The Wind Mariah' from the musical 'Paint Your Wagon'. Scored the 1994 UK No.1 single 'Without You' plus over 20 other UK Top 40 hits and 12 US No.1 singles. via thisdayinmusic.com
Let it burn. The judiciary is as f*cking nuts as the people who appear before them.
“Even gender-neutral pronouns don’t feel as if they fit me,” Patch said. “I feel no identity or closeness with any pronouns I’ve come across. What describes me is my name.”
As the old commercial went, "Parts is parts." Form woman to "man".
Having already bought you a first-class ticket to the wonderful land of hairy vagina monsters (and other such delights of vaginoplasty), it seemed downright sexist not to visit neighboring Dongistan. We talked to Gerbil, a trans man who recently underwent phalloplasty, and he told us that turning a hoo-ha into a wang comes with its own unique challenges. For example ...
Finding A Dong Doctor Is Nearly Impossible
Bigfoot? More like lead foot. Genius Award Winner.
Once again, Man's Best Friend lives up to its reputation. Tonight's Feel Good Story of The Day.
Tonight's ONT has been brought to you by Positive Attitude.
Notice: Posted with permission by AceCorp, LLC. All local, state and federal laws were complied with during The ONT process.
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Devin Nunes Got His Information About Intel Reports from an Intel Officer, and That's a Scandal Or Something
Or at least the Democrats are trying to make this into their new Rachel Maddow Moment.
Nunes says he had to view the documents which he says may prove Obama targeted Trump from a sensitive compartmentalized information facility (SCIF) that could display executive branch information, which Congress doesn't have. A source -- who he says is an intelligence officer himself -- suggested he use one of the White House's SCIFs to view the material. Then Nunes walked over to Trump to tell him what he'd seen.
It seems very strange indeed that someone needs to tell Trump about information to which Trump should already be in possession of, but then, it was reported some time ago (and then semi-retracted and semi-denied) that certain members of the intel community were not telling Trump things they'd ordinarily tell the president.
Why it had to be done this way, I don't know -- maybe only delivering information to a Congressman gets you whistleblower status.
Meanwhile, James Comey and NSA Director Rodgers are not coming to a previously-scheduled closed-door briefing of Congress. They haven't said why.
Norman Borlaug: The Greatest Man You've Never Heard Of
Feeding the world is much easier because of this man, and he represents pretty much everything the agricultural neo-luddites on the Left despise. Norman Borlaug: A Man For All Seasons is a short description of his career, which spanned 50 years and cannot possibly be more impressive. And like a true scientist, he had an open mind, and saw the possibilities of the burgeoning recombinant DNA technology.
With the world’s population continuing to increase, the need for additional agricultural production remains, and in his later years Norman turned his efforts to ensure the success of this century’s equivalent of the Green Revolution -- the application of modern genetic engineering (also known as “genetic modification,” or GM) to agriculture. As Norman and other plant scientists realized, the use of the term “genetic modification” to apply only to the newest genetic techniques is an unfortunate misnomer, because plant scientists had been using crude and laborious techniques to obtain new genetic variants of wheat, corn and other crops for centuries. Products now in development with genetic engineering techniques offer the possibility of even higher yields, lower inputs of agricultural chemicals and water, enhanced nutrition, and even plant-derived, orally active vaccines.
No hysterical political stance, no hyperventilating about peak this and peak that and WE'RE ALL GOING TO DIE! Just a fanatical focus on the job at hand...to feed the starving. And he did it.
And he did it in part because he understood better than most what science is;
“It is easy to forget that science offers more than a body of knowledge and a process for adding new knowledge. It tells us not only what we know but what we don’t know. It identifies areas of uncertainty and offers an estimate of how great and how critical that uncertainty is likely to be.”
He knew what he didn't know. And that is something that our insular, good-ole-boys-club of climate scientists would do well to understand.
I Mostly Quit Consuming News and I'm So Much Happier and More Productive [Warden]
Donald Trump's ascendency had the happy effect of helping me let go of any obligation to defend him as a nominee. His presidency--and the media's hysterical reaction to every single thing he says, does or tweets--has allowed me to reduce my consumption of news by at least 90% and I've never felt better.
The media culture is quite literally insane. I'm not just talking about print and television new. I mean all of it, including the stuff you and I use--Twitter, Facebook, blogs, comment sections, etc...
We've been heading in this direction for awhile. As ace has noted previously, the medium is the message. Most of today's media is clickbaiting, emotion-driven nonsense, as it must be. A medium that reduces attention span and encourages grazing across multiple tabs demands it. And somewhere along the line someone figured out that nothing drives clicks and views like outrage.
I think people have always loved running their mouths about things they know nothing about. The difference between today and before the rise of social media is that they didn't have a ready audience. You can only rant to your neighbors, coworkers and the barber so much in a given week.
Now those same louts do have an audience, and a relatively large one at that--one that rewards them for their outbursts and calls them wise, brave and inspiring. Nothing builds social capital like broadcasting the "right" opinions loudly, emotionally, and frequently.
President Trump didn't cause any of this, but he is a product of the culture and he's acted as an accelerant to the generally dysfunctional state of mass communications. It goes without saying that the press hates him unreservedly and with religious fervor.
It's also no secret that the press is filled with low-IQ, throne sniffing propagandists who are entirely incapable of earning a living through more respectable means. With their constant baiting, framing, double standards, deceptive edits and lies of both commission and omission, they have slowly but steadily lost the trust of most of their viewership. We've been watching it right here on this blog since the 2004 disgrace of Dan Rather.
But the ratcheting intensity driven by their Trump hating pathology has created something new and awful--a general feeling of paranoia, anger and fear that permeates our daily living.
And because Trump has a cunning and instinctive understanding of this circus-like atmosphere, he also adds to the confusion with his own deceit and off-the-wall behavior.
Don't get me wrong-- I find Donald Trump's smashing of DC norms to be mostly a positive development. But the man, taken as a whole and combined with underhanded maneuvering of his media antagonists has helped create an atmosphere where the truth is dream-like and elusive.
Frankly, it's exhausting to try to keep up. Every day and multiple times within is some new outrage. He gaslights them, they gaslight us. Everyone reacts without thinking at full volume and then we're on to the next thing before anything is inspected, pondered, and resolved.
I used to feel it was some sort of moral and patriotic obligation to stay on top of current affairs. No longer. I have neither the time nor the inclination to sift through miles of sewage in order to find some tiny, useful nugget of information. It's bad for my mental and spiritual health which, in turn, is bad for my family. And I value them--and myself-- far more than Being Right About Everything or whipping out some hard earned fact in order to TOTALY PWN an opponent on Twitter.
It hit me a few weeks ago that very little of what I've been consuming is real. It's like a crazy funhouse filled with distorted mirrors and spooky, upsetting sound effects. So, I thought, why enter? No one is making me and there's a perfectly good reality to enjoy elsewhere. Hadn't I spent most of my life prior to this bizarre age we're living through doing exactly that?
I took a long weekend to be with my kids over Spring Break last week and hardly even looked at the internet except to drop a post onto Ace of Spades. I threw a football with my kids at the park, took them to laser tag, cooked them breakfast and lunch every day and got some yard work done in balmy 70 degree weather.
I also spent time with my wife, played some video games, and stuck my nose in a book for a few hours each day.
It was wonderful. Peace and quiet is good for both the soul and the intellect. It gives you time to consider things deeply rather than respond primitively and by rote to information.
The less media I consume, the more time I have, allowing me to get back to being the bookworm I'd been for the first 30 or so years of my life.
It's easy to get trapped the way I was and the way many of you are. New media is sneaky. It allows you feel smart while actually making you stupid. We have more information at our disposal today than ever, but it's a mile wide and about an inch deep online or on TV. It encourages a hunter/gatherer mentality that ultimately causes you to lose your ability to deeply focus on a task. Reading reverses that process. I'm already seeing my attention span grow again.
In the last week of browsed at least parts of Mere Christianity by CS Lewis, Hillbilly Elegy by JD Vance, A Pinch of Salt by Theodore Dalyrimple and The End of Average by Todd Rose. These are four thoughtful books filled with interesting ideas by men who are far smarter and insightful than the television personalities yelling inanities at you on TV as they try to manipulate your opinion to better accommodate the world they wish for themselves.
I'm here to tell you that I'm not going back. The more I scale back my media consumption, the more centered and in touch I become with the real world. I'm done chasing illusions. The big secret of new media is that it cons you even when you know it's all a big con. Life is too short and precious to be wasted on carnival barkers and grifters.
Bonus trollish thought: If you want to drive a left wing acquaintance mad, tell him that you don't bother to watch news (even if you do) because they're all just liars.
Follow up by responding to every argument he tries to make with, "Ehhhh, buncha liars."
A Journey Through the Upside-Down
Sweet fancy Moses, the stuff you can find on Twitter. What kind of kartoffelkopf do you have to be to believe that the reason Hillary! lost is because the MSM spent all their time ginning up hatred against her because they wanted the Republican to win?
Peter Daou was a Hillary advisor during her '08 campaign. Not sure why he wasn't working for her this time around, but who knows? Anyway, the crush he had on her back then is just as strong as ever. About a week ago, he finally reached his breaking point, and lashed out with a epic tweetstorm of unhinged lunacy that gets close to the Eichenwald absolute.
Below is how it starts out, and I cut and pasted the text from the rest of the tweets to save space. So come along with me and savor the crazy. And the butthurt. But mostly-- well actually, I don't know which one is more predominant, but here we go into the fever swamp. I trust everyone has had their shots, and make sure your mosquito netting is firmly in place:
1. THREAD. Why Hillary hate is at the core of the current crisis in US politics. You can't understand Trump if you don't get Hillary. (1/30)— Peter Daou (@peterdaou) March 19, 2017
2. Hillary Clinton has been aggressively vetted and formally investigated (by Republicans) for decades. NO WRONGDOING HAS EVER BEEN FOUND.
3. But Hillary receives more hate, more rage, more fury than serial killers or child murderers. TRUMP IS PRESIDENT BECAUSE OF HILLARY HATE.
4. The hatred for Hillary is wildly disproportional to the facts of her life. Disconnected from reality. She has SAVED CHILDREN'S LIVES.
5. Male politicians who voted for the same policies are given a pass, but she is labeled a murderer for her national security-related votes.
6. Hillary's haters drop a word like "Benghazi" as though it conjures instant evildoing. But endless investigations have exonerated her.
7. The same people who shout "Benghazi" are completely silent on Trump's Yemen raid, which tragically cost many innocent lives.
9. When Hillary earns money, it's "corruption." When other (male) politicians do, it's success. An absolutely vicious double standard.
10. Once again, I repeat: HILLARY CLINTON HAS NEVER BEEN FOUND GUILTY OF WRONGDOING. And her haters will NEVER admit that basic truth.
11. Here's where Trump comes in. Hillary was being vilified by the media, by the right, and by the left BEFORE Trump was a candidate.
12. Before Trump ran, Hillary was being slammed by pundits with terms like "imperious, paranoid, petulant, devious." (link to article by the author which is really quite unhinged)
13. FACT: No matter WHO ran against Hillary, the 2016 election was going to be about demonizing her to the point where she couldn't win.
14. The news media spent SIX HUNDRED CONSECUTIVE DAYS on Hillary's emails. No Trump story, however egregious, got even one tenth the focus.
15. The 2016 election was about the destruction of Hillary Clinton's reputation. The great travesty is that Team Sanders played a huge role.
16. Bernie spent 2015 on an uplifting, positive, progressive message. Encouraging & exciting. Then he pivoted hard negative against Hillary.
17. I chronicled every attack, every TV appearance by Tad Devine and Jeff Weaver calling Hillary corrupt and evil. It was brutal and unjust.
18. Sanders/Stein supporters threw dollar bills at her in the street, one of the most repugnant political spectacles in American history.
19. Meanwhile, the corporate media treated Hillary with dripping disdain while celebrating the ratings Trump's antics got them. Disgraceful.
20. The result of this Hillary-bashing was that by the general election, her public image was severely damaged. Trump just surfed the hate.
21. Given the choice between a hated man and a (wrongly) hated woman, the man wins every time. WE ARE NOT BEYOND GENDER BIAS IN AMERICA.
22. The immense disproportionality in who Hillary is and how she is perceived is also the hallmark of the Trump presidency. Skewed reality.
23. If everything seems topsy-turvy, if right seems wrong and up seems down, you can trace it back to the merciless vilification of Hillary.
24. When a lifelong public servant devoted to the rights of women and children can be seen as a devil-monster-witch, reality is lost.
25. Acknowledging and rejecting the mangling of Hillary's public image by the media, the right and the left is key to dealing with Trump.
26. Hillary's bashers yell that I should "move on" and that it's ALL HER FAULT. She's "flawed." She skipped Wisconsin. Empty talking points.
27. If we quietly accept the unfair, unjust and too often sexist assault on Hillary's character, we are embracing "alternative reality."
28. The original problem, the root cause of our dilemma, is the character assassination of Hillary in 2016. Trump is just a by-product.
29. Every single time we fight the lies and smears against Hillary, we are fighting to regain our grip on truth, on facts, on decency.
30. Dislike her, disagree with her. But to despise her more than the worst people on the planet is UNACCEPTABLE. I, for one, won't forget.
Whew! Did we lose anyone? Good. Step over to your right for your mandatory fungal disinfectant shower, and see the doctor on your way out for some booster shots and antibiotics.
Close it up
Palestinian Terrorist and "Feminist" Stripped of US Citizenship, Ejected From Country
I'm under the weather and am taking the day off, pretty much. I'll just put up open threads and links. Sorry -- I just feel like crap.
Move Over Lutefisk, There's A New Sheriff In Town
...and its name is Surströmming.
This is a Swedish “delicacy”: Baltic herring that has been fermenting for six months.
Ask for it by name:
Terry Pratchett once theorized that each country or culture has some really disgusting food item that they never eat themselves, but they give to gullible foreigners because they think they're eating "authentic ethnic food." So, for example, you go to some northern country and are served seagull feet marinated in fermented yak urine while they're all in the next tent laughing at you while chowing down on reindeer steaks.
Oh, and once you've finished your heaping helping of surströmming, you might like some dessert:
This diet is good for your GAINZZ. When strictly adhered to, the pounds will just melt right off. So what's not to like?
A number of you asked what would be the American equivalent? Here are some candidates:
Open thread, by the way.
Close it up
Mid-Morning Open Thread
This is an interesting and amusing painting, although nobody would argue for its inclusion among the greats. So why did I choose it? Well, in addition to it being nice to look at, it was donated to the De Young Museum Mr. and Mrs. John D. Rockefeller 3rd, the third generation of a famous family of fascist oppressors.
It's easy for the Left to demonize wealth, but here is a very nice example of what it can do. And while I have no need to assure you of this, I will, because it needs repeating: the progressive canard that government is necessary for the support of the arts is just that; a lie, perpetrated on the American public. I will take privately funded art any day of the week over the work product of the current crop of lazy, self-indulgent, narcissistic, talentless drones whose only skill is sticking a thumb in the eye of Western culture.
The Morning Report 3/27/17
Good morning, kids. Well, last Friday sure was a let down. Ironically, some blame the Freedom Caucus and conservatives for being "ideological purists" while others blame the GOP-e for crafting a bogus bill that sustained and even expanded Obamacare as well as PDT for not knowing any better. There's even speculation that this is all some sort of 11-dimensional chess on the latter's part in order to hurry the collapse of Obamacare so he can rush in and save the day. No matter what, it's a propaganda coup for the Democrat Left. And if that wasn't bad enough, people like the Son of the Postman want PDT to include Democrats in any health care legislation. What's going on in the President's head is a mystery to me. But this bill clearly was a combination of the GOP protecting a big government entitlement/bureaucracy while torpedoing the Trump agenda. I agree with Senator Cotton and Scott McKay at Spectator: Get back to work and craft a repeal and real legislation that opens up the free market and reduces government intervention/regulation as much as possible. Other than that, you'll notice that, Pixy shenanigans notwithstanding, we have actual real opening credits! Woo hoo! Big shout out and thank you to Little Mrs. Spellcheck for creating them. Anyway, links from around the world, across the nation and up your street. Have a better one and remain blessed.
- In Wake of Friday Fiasco PDT Courts . . . Democrats?
- The Freedom Caucus Owes GOP Leadership an Apology (Satire)
- Cotton on Health Insuruance: "We Have to Revisit It"
- Enough With the Recriminations, Go Back to Work!
- Last Weeks Reality Check on Liberalism and Entitlements
- PDT Looks to NASA, Space Exploration in Weekly Radio Address
- The Son-In-Law Also Rises; Kushner Tapped for New Office of Govt. Innovation
- Chutz-Pocrisy Alert: Group Fighting Gorsuch Because of Citizens United Awash in, Get This, "Dark Money"
- CNN Hack Stetler Blasts Fox for Covering Rockville Rape, As . . .
- . . . Nation Experiences a Spree of Crimes Committed by Illegal Aliens
- Wow. Ted Koppel Tells Sean Hannity to His Face He, Fox News Bad for America
- Daughter of Westminster Jihadist Defied Him, Refused to Wear a Burqa
- Daniel Greenfield: The Civil War Is Here
Sunday Overnight Open Thread (3/26/17) Skimpy Edition
Quotes of The Day
Life sometimes gets in the way of writing. Jean M. Auel
It did this weekend. Sorry for the skimpy ONT.
The most expensive hobby a rich man could have is a boat, and the second most expensive hobby he could have is a very old house. Barbara Corcoran
Originality consists in thinking for yourself, not in thinking differently from other people.James Fitzjames Stephen
As we approach summer, travel plans take place. If you are into traveling and television This is for you. 10 places to relive your favorite TV shows.
If you spend thousands and thousands on a product, is it yours? Are you free to repair it on your own? According to John Deere, you can't. h/t Hank Curmudgeon
A license agreement John Deere required farmers to sign in October forbids nearly all repair and modification to farming equipment, and prevents farmers from suing for "crop loss, lost profits, loss of goodwill, loss of use of equipment … arising from the performance or non-performance of any aspect of the software." The agreement applies to anyone who turns the key or otherwise uses a John Deere tractor with embedded software. It means that only John Deere dealerships and "authorized" repair shops can work on newer tractors.
Tonight's Science Lesson.
In a ceremony at the White House, Egyptian President Anwar el-Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin sign a historic peace agreement, ending three decades of hostilities between Egypt and Israel and establishing diplomatic and commercial ties.
Twitter. Aging. Growing old tweets.
The table below breaks down the number of books you'll have time for if you maintain your current reading habits. Twenty-five-year-old women, for example, have 61 years left to live according to the Social Security Life Expectancy Calculator. Assuming they live that long, average readers in that group have 732 more books to read in their lifetimes.....
Tonic. It goes wonderfully with Gin. But does it go well with coffee?
Speaking of getting old.
March 26, 1965, The Supremes scored their fourth US No.1 single with 'Stop! In The Name Of Love.' The song was included on the Supremes' sixth album, More Hits by The Supremes, and was nominated for the 1966 Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Rock & Roll Group Vocal Performance, losing to 'Flowers on the Wall' by the Statler Brothers. The song was also honored by inclusion in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's permanent collection of the 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll. via thisdayinmusic.com
The story of Rachel Dolezal Or Oingo Boingo Harika Shaniqua or whatever she calls herself these days.
In her heart, she’s still a misunderstood black woman.
Rachel Dolezal — who convincingly passed as an African-American civil rights activist in Spokane, Washington, until her inarguably Caucasian parents outed her as white in 2015 — is now stepping back into the spotlight in all her bottle-bronzed, afro-hair-extensioned glory.
Navy Seals are tough, physically and mentally. How do they become mentally tough?
Mental toughness is a state of mind. Anyone can develop the mental toughness of a solider without being part of the military. Mental toughness is resilience—the ability to stick to something regardless of the obstacles in your way. It’s about being goal oriented, always trying to improve, and being dependable and consistent. I believe mental toughness is fueled by either a dedication to self or a dedication to a higher cause. Ideally it is both.
Masturbation is natural. Sometimes unless you're a Genius Award Winner.
School lunches, ugh except for this Feel Good Story of The Day.
Tonight's ONT has been brought to you by the Road To Nowhere.
Notice: Posted with permission by AceCorp, LLC.
Home of the quantity not quality ONT. The Little Blog That Could.
Top 10 commenters:
1 [572 comments] 'TheJamesMadison' [80.35 posts/day]
2 [459 comments] 'J.J. Sefton'
3 [397 comments] 'Insomniac - sin valor'
4 [362 comments] 'rickb223'
5 [303 comments] 'Steve and Cold Bear'
6 [302 comments] 'Cicero (@cicero)'
7 [289 comments] ' E Depluribus Unum-'
8 [289 comments] '#neverskankles'
9 [277 comments] 'JackStraw'
10 [267 comments] 'Nevergiveup'
Top 10 sockpuppeteers:
1 [76 names] 'Steve and Cold Bear' [10.68 unique names/day]
2 [45 names] 'Duncanthrax'
3 [44 names] 'Joe Biden'
4 [43 names] 'Mike Hammer, etc., etc.'
5 [37 names] 'Rick in SK'
6 [36 names] 'Cicero (@cicero)'
7 [34 names] 'Notorious BFD'
8 [30 names] 'an indifferent penguin'
9 [27 names] 'josephistan'
10 [26 names] 'Cicero (@cicero)'
Close it up
Helicopter Parents and the End of Childhood Freedom [Warden]
I found this 2014 Atlantic article, The Overprotected Kid, and found myself nodding vigorously at the astonishing difference between my childhood and those that my kids are living.
Admittedly, I was parented by insanely libertarian minded parents who figured that any day I didn't come home maimed was pretty much a win. Even for the standards of the 70's, my brother and I were given so much latitude that our parents were the black sheep of the neighborhood.
There are things I did that I'd never allow my kids to do. My parents were extreme, bordering on neglectful at times. For example, my mom never bothered buying us snow boots even though she could afford to. Nope, sneakers were fine for running around in the snow. Gloves and a hat were optional as well, even on subzero days. I never owned a scarf until my wife bought me one ten years ago. I remain baffled that anyone who doesn't work in life threateningly cold weather would think one a necessity.
Despite this, I think my childhood was far more enjoyable, adventuresome and healthy than that of my children. And I feel guilty about this. I'm the parent, after all. On the other hand, our current culture makes it nearly impossible, legally, socially, and practically, to expose my kids to the same level of risk and freedom that I enjoyed.
Looking back, my parents had it pretty damned easy. By the time I was 8 years old, I would ride my bike a mile and a half to the pool in the summer when it opened and not return until close to dinner. At least half of those evenings, I would rush outside to play with friends right after eating. Mom literally saw me for an hour or two a day.
The sound of children was a constant in my old neighborhood. Kids were everywhere outside, playing sports, racing bikes, chasing each other through back yards. Today, in a suburban neighborhood packed with kids, you can't find a single one outside on most weekends. Even if I wanted to encourage my kids to disappear for a few hours, there's no one for them to run around with.
I'm both saddened and chagrined at the fact that neither of my boys, ages 5 and 10, have every climbed a tree, went creek walking or ran the neighborhood past dark. They've never played kick the can, toilet papered a house or swam in a pond.
I'm sensitive to the damage a sheltered life can cause, and I do my best to foster independence where I can. For example, when I take my 5 year old to the supermarket, I let him roam about the store eating sample and searching the discount fruit bin for good deals while talking to employees and sometimes strangers.
This never fails to cause some well-meaning adult to inform me that I've lost my kid. "No," I tell them. "he knows where to find me." I usually receive disapproving looks. I wonder what they'd think of my mom, who'd let my brother and I wander off into the toy aisle while she grocery shopped in peace, tasking us with the responsibility to catch up with her at the checkout line when she was finished. They'd likely call the cops on her today.
It seems that no matter what I do to give my kids more freedom, I'm stymied by other adults. I used to walk my little one into preschool, open the locked, coded door for him, then kiss him goodbye. It was then up to him to hang his coat, fish his folder out of his backpack, wash his hands and make his way into class.
That is, it was up to him until a couple of months ago when one of his teachers got upset after finding him "wandering the hallway alone" and asked that I escort him into class. "Otherwise," she said, "we could get into trouble."
And so my 5 year old had even that small bit of freedom yanked from him. I'm annoyed, but I don't blame the preschool. Everyone is terrified of being sued.
Even my wife got into the game this past week, freaking out that I left the two boys alone at laser tag for an hour while I went next door for a beer. It was deliberate. I could've gotten a beer inside the laser tag place if I'd wanted to, but I chose to get out of their space. My wife thought this was irresponsible. She's wrong. A 10 year old can look after a 5 year old for an hour in a public place.
And so, I continue to fight a desperate and pathetic rear guard action against overwhelming cultural forces. I'll give my kids a few bucks at a sporting event and let them go find the concession stand (and their way back) on their own. I leave them alone at home while I run errands on the weekend. I have my older son cook breakfast for the younger one once or twice a week.
It all seems so inadequate. I can't win and we can't go back to a different time--one without smart phones, organized sports starting at 4 years old, and a pile of rules and regulations for ever conceivable situation. It makes me sad.
Perhaps I'm someone who just can't let go of things. I have dozens of childhood stories of adventure, mischief, recklessness, foolishness and bravery---hours of planning, exploring, competing, fighting, cooperating, exploring, failing and achieving-- all outside the oversight of our parents. I wonder... what childhood stories will my boys tell?
Open Thread For Various Discussions About Everything Except Dresses
Food Thread: Oysters And Bars And Happy Hours
It's no secret that I love the little buggers. Even thoroughly mediocre mass-market oysters that are found at the typical $1 oyster happy hour are pleasant. But occasionally, like last night, I get some really good ones. A touch of brine, firm and creamy flesh, and best of all that marvelous and unique "oyster" flavor that is almost sweet but not quite...almost tart but not quite. Yes, I will turn in my Man-CardTM for using this word, but "umami" might be the best descriptor. I know that oysters are odd, and some people simply can't abide their texture, but if you haven't tried them, and are at all adventurous, give it a shot. But go to a good place. And don't order a dozen. Just order three, and maybe ask for a selection. If you like them, you will probably descend into oyster hell...forever haunting happy hours and out-of-the-way dives that are rumored to have the best oysters in town.
Anyway, the bar was packed, but shockingly they knew how to manage the crowds by taking names for seats at the bar. One of the things I despise about humanity is its conspicuous lack of etiquette. And nowhere is that failing displayed more obviously than at crowded bars. Don't try to elbow your way past me to sit at the newly vacated seat for which I was waiting patiently. Don't rotate your bar stool so you can chat facing your friend; that takes room away from me. And it's rude.
But management at The Mermaid Inn managed these issues quite well. The hostess and bartenders kept lists and enforced them. A rude couple did try to scoot past me to snag those seats, and the bartender firmly put them in their place.
It was glorious.
This once was a temple of oyster gastronomy; The Grand Central Oyster Bar. Sadly faded, but still a fascinating glimpse into what New York City once was.
Looks simple to make: Roasted Strawberry-Buttermilk Sherbet
Seems "peas" are springy, and so are spring onions. Ran across a bunch of pea and spring onion soups, etc. Pea Consomme
Looks delicious: Lemon-Poppy and Chevre Cheesecakes
I would love this: Soft-Shell Crab And Bacon Sandwiches
Here's a recipe that Bluebell swears doesn't stink up your kitchen. And that is a big deal for me, since the hood over my stove is crap, because of both design flaws and being underpowered. It is an integrated hood/microwave/convection oven, and two of the three are useful and work well. But form certainly did not follow function in this case.
I am all for learning a bit of arcane stuff about food. And this article sort of interesting, but please; ease up on the smug. And the easy pontification about things you know not-quite-enough to be considered an expert. Like this:
Ostriches are the largest birds on earth, which means they lay the largest eggs.
Uh...no. They may be the largest birds on earth, and they may lay the largest eggs, but one does not prove the other. Sorry.
I was all set to give you a wonderful arugula and potato salad. I was confident that I had never posted it. Right up until I checked, and found that I had indeed posted it, and not too long ago. Yeah....tell me again what the upside to growing old is....
So you will have to settle for a hastily researched recipe. I never made it, but it looks good. If it sucks, it's not my fault! Leave me alone! I need my binky....
I do have a quibble. I would not use Italian sausage. I think anduille or a chroizo would be a better choice. They are firmer, have a bit of spice, and don't have fennel, which seems discordant in this recipe.
[For food complaints, comments, recipes and the address to which you may send all of your extra antelope backstrap and fresh morels: cbd dot aoshq at gmail dot com]
Close it up
Sunday Morning Book Thread 03-26-2017
Library of Skandia Recluse
Good morning to all you 'rons, 'ettes, lurkers, and lurkettes. Welcome once again to the stately, prestigious, internationally acclaimed and high-class Sunday Morning Book Thread, where men are men, all the 'ettes are hotties, safe spaces are underneath your house and are used as protection against actual dangers, like natural disasters, or Literally Hitler, and special snowflakes melt. And unlike other AoSHQ comment threads, the Sunday Morning Book Thread is so hoity-toity, pants are required. Even if it's these pants, which only go to show that wearing your PJs in the middle of the day is perhaps not a modern fad.
Skandia Recluse writes:
The Zane Grey books are book club editions and were published in the fifties, and I had read them all before reaching the sixth grade, usually in bed, late at night, under the covers, by flashlight. Probably why I am very nearsighted...You might notice the figure of Buddha on the top shelf and in the spirit of Mr. Dietrich (V for Vendetta) when asked "Are you Muslim?" replied, "No, I'm in television," I would reply to the question, "Are you Buddhist?" with "No, I am a recluse."
Today is International De-Lurk Day
As I announced last week, I want to turn today's book thread into what you might call a "lurkers' showcase" where all of you lurkers and lurkettes post a book review. That is, if you've enjoyed a book that you first heard about on the book thread, I think you can assume that you might know of a book or two that the rest of us would like to hear about. The value of the book thread is in the comments, where books are recommended, de-recommended, and generally discussed. So I hope many of you will be moved to post your reviews.
Over on the MoronHorde group on GoodReads, a few months ago, we read The Camp of the Saints, a French novel from the 1970s which predicted, with uncanny accuracy, the social pathologies that are produced when a western country is inundated by a mass influx of unassimilated third-world immigrants. It was published, mostly forgotten, then became a best-seller in 2011 when the issues it raised became topical again.
So I came across another novel that is kind of like that, meaning, written long ago, forgotten, then rediscovered.
The Twentieth Day of January, written by acclaimed British author Ted Allbeury and first published in 1980, tells of an incoming American president who is compromised by a sex scandal concocted by Russian spies...“When it was written, Carter was president, Reagan was about to come in…The bare bones [of the plot] are that an aspirant politician who was nowhere near being a serious contender for the presidency somehow through the manipulation of a strike gets into a position where he becomes a possible contender and keeps being helped undoubtedly with financial support, and then becomes president. And the Russians have compromising photographs of him.”
Although a work of fiction, fans of the book have been astonished by the way it seems to predict the rise of Trump and the allegations made against him recently.
Allbeury, an ex-intelligence officer during the Cold War, passed in 2005. It sounds like his professional life was perhaps a bit more exciting than he would have liked:
After his death, his friend and fellow writer Len Deighton recalled: “During the Cold War, Ted was running agents across the border that divided communist East Germany from the west. His luck ran out and the Russians left him nailed to a kitchen table in a farmhouse. Practised torturers, they made sure he had a chance to survive and take the story back to his fellow agents. The war never ended for him. His children were kidnapped and he pursued them to South America. Ted never told me what happened after that. I urged Ted to write his memoirs but he could not be persuaded. He said he’d signed an official document that prevented him doing so. Well, that’s our loss, along with Ted himself: a hero, patriot, family man, friend and outstanding writer.”
You know what other well-known author was a CIA field agent? William F. Buckley. It's probably safe to assume he incorporated his experiences working for the agency into his Blackford Oakes spy novels. I had always wanted Buckley to write an account of what he did during his time in the CIA, but perhaps he was bound by a non-disclosure agreement similar to Allbeury's. Or, maybe he was just an honorable man who didn't think it was proper to divulge secrets that had been entrusted to him.
The Twentieth Day of January is available on Kindle for seven and a quarter.
I have to give credit to Marcia Nelson, the author of Muslim Publishers Look to Build Bridges, Counter Cultural Misunderstanding for managing to restrain herself from using the word 'Islamophobia' until the 9th (out of 13) paragraph of her Publisher's Weekly piece:
Simon & Schuster’s Salaam Reads is the first imprint at a major publishing house to focus on Muslim characters and stories. Zareen Jaffery is the executive editor at the imprint, which launched last year. Her focus is on books that reflect the diversity within the Muslim community, but authors also explore issues that many Muslims face in the U.S. today. “Unfortunately Islamophobia has been going on for a long time, although it does feel like it’s been heightened today, with mosques burning down and verbal assaults increasing,” said Jaffery. “Feeling threatened tends to permeate the mind and writers respond to that in their work—maybe not directly, but it does show up.”
Well, if she doesn't like mosque burnings, perhaps she should tell her co-religionists to stop setting them on fire. Like that guy in Seattle.
Despite the nuances found in the Muslim publishing industry, one common goal between publishers is clear: to provide resources that accurately represent beliefs and experiences of distinct and numerous communities of Muslims in the U.S. and around the globe. Such books can “expand the base of knowledge” on Islam, according to Jaffery.
OK, fine. I'm all for cross-cultural understanding. I'm a bit of a text geek. That is, I'd like to try to understand texts as the authors intended them to be understood, rather than just making sh* up to fit my preconceived notions. Which, incidentally, is how liberal Christians read the Bible and what progressives do with the U.S. Constitution.
Anyway, with that being said, here is what I would like to see: a book by a 'moderate' Islamic scholar or scholars that refutes the teachings of the Wahabist/Salafist/jihadist school of Islam. The jihadists claim that the Quran commands them to establish an Islamic civilization, by force, if need be (and it always does). And if this involves murdering unbelievers, then the murders will have Allah's blessing, as it is all part of the greater jihad. So I would like the book to be something like: "The jihadis take verse such-and-such from the Quran and use it to justify their atrocities, but the correct interpretation of that verse is actually quite different." And then provide an exegetical explanation of what they think the correct interpretation should be. And they would need to do this point by point, with every Quranic verse and every quote from the Hadiths.
I would be genuinely interested in reading such a book. Because I'm wondering if it is possible to write such a book without pretty much destroying Islam as a religious system and replacing it with some modern, low-cal, secular, liberal substitute. Kind of like how the western progressives turn Christianity into a system of beliefs wherein "God without wrath brought men without sin into a Kingdom without judgment through the ministrations of a Christ without a cross" type of namby-pamby liberal Christianity, which, of course, isn't really Christianity at all. You really can't have Christianity without the cross. But can you have Islam without the sword?
A New Interstellar Hero?
Here's a new one (new to me, anyway) that came across my path this week, Starship Grifters, featuring Rex Nihilo, who's a "space-faring ne'er-do-well with more bravado than brains". It looks like a run read:
Rex Nihilo plies the known universe in a tireless quest for his own personal gain. But when he fleeces a wealthy weapons dealer in a high-stakes poker game, he ends up winning a worthless planet…and owing an outstanding debt more vast than space itself!
The only way for Rex to escape a lifetime of torture on the prison world Gulagatraz is to score a big payday by pulling off his biggest scam. But getting mixed up in the struggle between the tyrannical Malarchian Empire and the plucky rebels of the Revolting Front—and trying to double-cross them both—may be his biggest mistake. Luckily for Rex, his frustrated but faithful robot sidekick has the cyber-smarts to deal with buxom bounty hunters, pudgy princesses, overbearing overlords, and interstellar evangelists…while still keeping Rex’s martini glass filled.
Yeah, Rex sounds like a real Moron. And with a robot sidekick, plus buxom bounty hunters, what's not to like?
And if you want to wet your whistle with a cheapie, you can get the Kindle edition of a Rex Nihilo prequel, The Chicolini Incident: A Rex Nihilo Adventure (Starship Grifters Universe Book 0) for 99 cents.
Perhaps the most famous of the many books by C.S. Lewis is The Screwtape Letters. Some years ago, they released an audiobook version, read by the British comedian John Cleese. I have it on cassette tape (that's how long ago I bought it) and I have to say that Cleese does a devilishly good job with the material.
The good news is that this audio version has made it to Youtube. Here is the playlist. You can even use one of those Youtube download apps to store it on your hard drive, if you prefer.
(h/t to TheJamesMadison for this recommendation last month)
What I'm Reading
I finished Philip K. Dick's The Man in the High Castle last week, the first one of his that I've read. And since I'm also watching the Amazon series, comparisons are inevitable. And this is where I find literary criticism to be extremely difficult. That is, I have some beefs with the book, but are the beefs the result of the author doing a lousy job, or because I have a lousy understanding of the book?
My main complaint is that TMitHC just seemed underdeveloped. Dick had an interesting idea, but he didn't seem to do much with it. For example, there is nothing in the book about any "resistance", nor is there the subplot involving Obergruppenführer John Smith and his family troubles. And I found the ending to be sort of unsatisfying. When I had finished it, my reaction was not so much "what a good story", but rather "yeah, so what?"
Because once you set a story in an alternative universe, you immediately invite all sorts of questions about the different universe, how did it get there and what's it all about? And why is such a setting necessary to tell the story?
These are some of the unanswered questions I had after finishing it.
But I liked Dick's discussions of Japanese culture and modes of thought. Also, his description of how the I Ching is used is so intricately detailed, I get the impression that his experience with it is first-hand, like this is something he seriously played around with at some time in his life. And it plays a way bigger part in the book than it does in the series.
All in all, I prefer the series. But that's maybe because I started watching it first and my expectations were set before I picked up the book.
Moronette 'votermom' is putting together a list of moron authors over on the Goodreads site which is intended to be accessible to non-members. Here is the list she has compiled so far. Let her know if there's an author she's missing.
Don't forget the AoSHQ reading group on Goodreads. It's meant to support horde writers and to talk about the great books that come up on the book thread. It's called AoSHQ Moron Horde and the link to it is here: https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/175335-aoshq-moron-horde.
So that's all for this week. As always, book thread tips, suggestions, bribes, rumors, threats, and insults may be sent to OregonMuse, Proprietor, AoSHQ Book Thread, at the book thread e-mail address: aoshqbookthread, followed by the 'at' sign, and then 'G' mail, and then dot cee oh emm.
What have you all been reading this week? Hopefully something good, because, as you all know, life is too short to be reading lousy books.
Close it up
Overnight Open Thread (25 Mar 2017)
Kinda sad this National Medal of Honor day hasn't gotten more publicity. Trump resurrects long-neglected 'Medal of Honor Day'.
Here are the Navy Medal of Honor recipients from Iwo Jima.
Jeez. You'd think a principal would know better. Principal accuses Wisconsin girl of selling sex toys at school. The toys in question are known as water snake wigglies. C'mon dude.
Swedish politician wants workers to get paid sex breaks - for health. Couldn't this be done during a normal break?
Bozena Riot Machine
Oh dear Lord, just stop. Glamping gear for men.
Is it bad that I enjoyed reading this story? Ivanka Trump's Secret Service roiling her D.C. neighbors. Man, I'd add more no parking signs every time they bitched. Oh, if it were some Democrat, you wouldn't be reading this at all. I'm willing to bet Obama, who lives one street over, has some no parking areas and large SUVs coming and going too. Funny there don't seem to any complaints there.
Nerf John Wick
Does this have anything to do with Hillary coming out of the woods? Idaho woman blames car crash on seeing sasquatch.
Oh enough with the weather hysteria. The North Atlantic may get its first ever named storm in March next week. If it forms, it'll be subtropical which means outside of winds, it'll have different characteristics than a tropical storm. There is no such thing as a subtropical hurricane.
Tonight's ONT brought to you by a collection of vintage celebrity advertisements:
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