Thursday, June 1, 2023

Paxton Vobiscum

Paxton is one of those AGs who really likes to be addressed as "General", so his far-right fanboys have dressed him up that way in the same way as they made Trump an Emperor.

There's a story running around about suspended criminal Texas attorney general Kenneth Paxton that isn't true, though it's his fault, because of his self-aggrandizing way of telling the story

on Stephen Bannon's podcast ("the #1 political podcast in the world"):

Monday, May 29, 2023

For the Record: Joe Did That

As I was following the television coverage of the debt ceiling

I got a communication from a distressed leftist who's even older than me:

Sunday, May 28, 2023

On Not Negotiating With Terrorists

American hostages in Tehran, 1979, via Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty.

From comments on Friday's post (in which it looks like I turned out to be right):

Any money cut from the increased IRS funding will actually cost multiples of the amount cut with wealthy individuals and corporations getting away with continued cheating.

    Actually, we always deal with terrorists and extortionists. As you're reading this, there's probably somebody in Washington thinking about the next step in trying to get that Wall Street Journal reporter out of Lefortovo prison. Evan Gershkovich. And whoever is stuck in Iran. Every major police force has people specifically trained to talk down bombers and hostage takers. As far as I know, it's actually effective sometimes, and when it is, it saves lives, sometimes on a massive scale. I was thinking about this the whole time, even as I was using the expression myself, cheering Democrats on in their justified anger, but I wasn't thinking hard enough.  

    "We don't negotiate with terrorists" means something, but it isn't exactly what it sounds like. It means more or less "This negotiation isn't going anywhere if you can't give me some reason to think of you as not a terrorist."

    Friday, May 26, 2023

    Joe Did What? State of the Hostage Situation


    Poster by TaoJones42, available from Redbubble for $15.56.

    As somebody or other said you can never make a deal until you do, and it looks, according to reporting from Jim Tankersley and Catie Edmondson for The New York Times last night, corroborated this morning by the Washington Post, like we're just about there with the debt ceiling, and details are starting to emerge from the process in a way they weren't before. I think we need to fold up the way we feel about the existence of the debt ceiling and keep it for next time Democrats have majorities in both houses of Congress, and take it out then and put a wooden stake through that stupid law's heart and cut off its head and fill its mouth with garlic and bury it at a crossroad (using the reconciliation procedure as needed). I may not be alive by then (last time there was a real chance was probably 1993), so I'm telling you now.

    Meanwhile, we might as well turn our attention to what we're going to get instead, which Josh Marshall says is unexpectedly good: it lifts the debt ceiling, rather than increasing it to a given number, for the next two years, until out beyond the next presidential election, so that we won't have to think about it again until 2025, and the budget cuts, as far as is currently understood, are less violent than feared, keeping the veterans' money as is and freezing the rest of the non-defense discretionary spending at 2023 rather than 2022 levels, or just a bit less:

    Wednesday, May 24, 2023

    Interesting Times

    Interesting Times

    How many criminal convictions on Trump's platter by November 2024? I'm guessing at least two. And he'll still be the nominee.

    MAY 24, 2023

    Republican Clown Car, 2015, by Donkey Hotey (via Wikimedia Commons).

    As Steve M is saying, Republicans seem to be doing everything they can to force themselves to renominate Trump next summer, particularly the ones who are most ostensibly anxious not to, calling up an implausibly crowded carful of non-Trump nonentities, like it’s 2015 all over again. Which it will be, at this rate.

    Ron DeSantis has now entered the campaign, or almost. He’s signed the special Run Ron Run bill overturning the Florida law that requires governors running for president to resign from the governorship, It’s been announced that he’s filed the paperwork, and eventually today....

    New Substack post

    Monday, May 22, 2023

    Theater of Ron

    Another day, another appalling story about Ron DeSantis—his "law enforcement relocation plan" that has spent $13.5 million luring anti-vaxx cops from other states to move to Florida with no vaccine mandate ad $5,000 payments up front has recruited some really bad officers:

    They include a former trainee deputy with the Escambia county sheriff’s office charged with murdering her husband; an officer with the Miramar police department fired for domestic battery and kidnapping; and a former member of the New York police department (NYPD) who was hired by the Palm Beach police department having once been accused of an improper sexual proposition.

    That officer, named by the Daily Dot [which is responsible for the reporting] as Daniel Meblin, was also part of a $160,000 settlement by the NYPD for violence at a 2020 protest against the deaths of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd in which officers were accused of beating Black males without provocation.

    Sunday, May 21, 2023

    Opera in Black and White

    Kind of a big Substack post—long, anyway.

    For the Record: Texas Trolls

    Via National Women's History Museum.

    Gish Galloped from Eleanor Roosevelt to Pudding Fingers DeSantis