A.M. Links: Tech Companies Want to Be More Transparent About Data Requests, Al Franken Claims NSA Surveillance Not Spying on Americans, Pakistan Wants to Permaban YouTube


  • the nsa really likes me!

    Google, Facebook and Microsoft want permission to be more transparent about the data requests they receive from the government. Al Franken, meanwhile, says he was "very well aware" of the NSA's surveillance but insists it's not spying on Americans.  Not a comedian anymore, but still a joke.

  • A former cop in Massachusetts pled guilty to tipping off a suspected drug dealer about a federal investigation and providing the home addresses of other officers.
  • A California man claims in a lawsuit police ordered their dog to attack him and then kept him in handcuffs despite him not being the robbery suspect they were looking for.
  • A South Carolina cop was fired for allegedly forcing a woman to expose and touch herself in exchange for help.
  • Rebels in eastern Syria massacred dozens of Shiite villagers according to activists.
  • Pakistan wants to permaban YouTube if Google doesn't remove blasphemous content. Do they really think that's going to work?
  • Nobel prize winning economist Robert Fogel died at 86.

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    1. Now that’s a worthy first comment.

      1. Hell; it’s the most interesting comment Fisty has ever made here at H&R!

        1. And the most intelligent.

      2. You’re pushing me closer to taking up a collection to buy you a new keyboard.

        1. I don’t know what happened on that one. It must have been a bad tag. Probably for the best; it was a racially insensitive and incredibly homophobic comment and included an unsubtle rape joke.

          1. Well that explains it then. PRISM is anti-rape-culture.

          2. it was a racially insensitive and incredibly homophobic comment and included an unsubtle rape joke

            “Fuck Obama”?

          3. If I understand Marcotte or West correctly, if you are a man, any joke you make is both unsubtle and about rape.

            So your meta-joke about the NSA blanking out your original post is actually an affirmative vote for going out and raping a feminist. You’re just to dense to get your own humor.

    2. Hmm. I call “foul”.

    3. That’s one way to keep PRISM off of your trail.

      1. I vote we all do this to keep PRISM confused.


        1. Operation Talk Like A Terrorist…
          I’m in!
          I’m melting the Western Antarctic Ice Sheet later today,

          1. Was just joking to a friend with whom we used to say “just kidding Mr. NSA guy” after making some horribly off-color comment about the government. So I’m totally ahead of the game.

          2. emacs has M-x spook

      2. It’s there, he just typed it in invisible ink.

  1. Deranged old lady shoots a kids on her lawn
    At least, I’m sure that’s how the libs would spin it.

    1. Her husband should teach her how to shoot straight.

    2. Hmm. I think it will be a little hard to spin this one that way.

      Here’s another successful self defense use of a gun to add: http://boston.cbslocal.com/201…..apartment/

    3. Cooper can be heard begging with the dispatcher to send deputies and warns that she has a gun at the ready as her Rottweiler barks furiously in the background.

      That’s some top shelf intellect on display from the intruder. “Where should I break in? How about the house with the ferocious dog and large caliber handgun?”

      1. The .357 is generally considered a medium caliber handgun.

        1. That’s plenty large compared to the squirrel guns I’d have to resort to.

    4. A 72 yo lady, poppin off a .357…


  2. Man sues doctor after surgery leaves him with eight-month erection
    Daniel Metzgar, 44, had the surgical procedure in 2009 but claims it was botched in a medical malpractice lawsuit
    Everyday chores – such as riding in his motorbike or collecting his newspaper – became a problem because he was ‘stuck in this position’


    1. Seek medical attention for erections lasting longer than four hours….

      1. or click on ‘local friend finder’ immediately.

      2. That always struck me as an “odd” warning since I assume it means that erections lasting up to four hours can be expected?

        1. yeah the problem is that those start to get painful after a while and eventually can cause permanent damage

        2. Don’t yours?

          1. When I was younger I rarely went 4 hours without one.

    2. “riding on his motorbike” is an everyday chore? Although all the vibrations would understandably make it more difficult to lose the erection.

    3. Any sane man would find a way to make a few bucks with that condition.


      1. I think Dante addressed this issue in the first circle.

  3. paging Dr. Adder:

    Miss Iowa pageant winner missing left forearm, to speak about disabilities

    After a grueling three-day competition, Nicole Kelly was named Miss Iowa on Saturday. The 23-year-old will go on to compete in the Miss America pageant, where she will speak about the importance of overcoming disabilities.

    Kelly was born without her left forearm, according to her biography on MissIowa.com.

    1. Looks like she’s missing a left hand too.

  4. University of Kansas orders coed cleavage Twitter page to cease and desist its activities

    Oh no! Boobies!

    1. Good thing that gargoyle doesn’t have ’em.

    2. Save the Tatas!

      Although KU is right, they do own the KU trademark and @KUBoobs is selling gear with the KU trademark without permissions — albeit for a charitable cause.

      1. They could give a certain %age of the monies raised back to the university in exchange for letting them use the logo. Sort of a tit-for-tat deal.

        1. You came back for that, sloop? I hope that’s just your warmup.

          1. My time has just been too short lately. Sorry.

            I hope to get back with a bit more regularity in a couple of weeks.

            1. Flax seed will help you with that, sloop.

            2. We miss your nutpunches. I think my scrotum callous is getting soft.

              1. but you don’t need the nutpunch’s contraceptive benefits for the time being, so relax and enjoy your softened scrotum while you can

              2. The nutpunches shall return soon. I assure you.

                OK, fine. Here’s more of a nut-tap to get you all ready for when I drop the hammer again soon.

                Michigan police officer fired for misconduct, but Sheriff assures us nothing criminal happened. He refuses to say what that nothing was, however..because “fuck you, that’s why”.

      1. I…you…I mean…

        *slowly shakes head, turns back to scrolling comments*

        1. Aw John, quit being such a boob.

    3. Why didn’t I go to Kansas University??? Holy sweet bejeebus

      1. Eh. The SEC, much of the ACC and Big 12 all have student bodies like that.

        1. ^This

          Stay 900 nautical miles away from any Big 10 student body.

      2. Ahem: it is either KU or the University of Kansas. NEVER Kansas University.

        1. Then why do they insist on KU. Thats bass-ackwards.

        2. Which says everything you need to know about a KU “education”.

      3. Corn-fed!

            1. Mine was obligatory; yours was just gratuitous.

              Although much more pleasant after turning off the sound.

              1. I love me some country gals.

  5. Oh, so you can’t connect your console online? that’s fine, says Xbox’s chief. Just get a 360 instead of an Xbox One.
    I think M$ should get a major boost towards the top of the “Worst Companies in the World” for their antics over the past couple of months.

    1. Why does NSA want to track video games?

      1. Duh, video games make people violent and train them into superhuman killers.

      2. Why does NSA want to track video games?

        to recruit the nation’s next batallion of drone operators?

        1. No, it’ll be like in Enders Game, they’ll sell a “Drone Operator” game only the twist is it is actually a real drone you’re flying

          1. It is a large Last Starfighter test.

            GO 80s HAIR!!!!!

      3. The analysts are too stupid/busy to find walkthroughs and cheat codes on the web?

    2. Wow. Just how out of touch are these guys? I guess the ass-kicking they just got from Sony wasn’t enough.

    3. They seem intent on making the same mistakes Sony made last generation, and then some. We don’t own a PS3, but it’s looking like the PS4 is going to be the go-to console for hardcore gaming this time around.

      1. the go-to console for hardcore gaming



        1. $400-500 for an all inclusive gaming system, or minimum $800-1000 for a good computer gaming rig.

          I’ll go with PS4 for $500, Alex.

          1. But playing an FPS on a console sucks. A lot.

            1. Everything is better on a PC. The problem is that studios plunge more resources into console games since the margins are better so they end product is usually a lot more polished.

              The biggest problem with PC gaming is the lack of sports titles. You want Madden? Fuck you, buy an XBox. NHL? FYXB. NBA? FYXB. FIFA? Fine, we’ll throw you a bone since there aren’t any consoles in Europe – here’s your shitty port with a UI that’s incompatible with your preferred choice of input.

              1. You know, I used to think that till I tried to play Skyrim on my PC. It is literally unplayable, the problem is the mouse sensitivity, I can either go from looking at the floor to looking at the ceiling with a quarter of an inch movement or needing to move the mouse 2 feet to make the same change and nothing in between. I even went and bought a mid grade gaming mouse to see if that could fix the problem and it didn’t.

                On the Xbox however moving and aiming are easy

                1. uh, there’s a mouse sensitivity slider in “options” *and* a config file you can edit manually.

                  Then get SkyUI – it makes the shitty console menus structure that was ported straight to the pc uh, *less* shitty and a bit more mouse friendly.

                  1. I just hit the engine limitation for active mods too.

                2. Seems like an issue with your PC. Changing the mouse sensitivity on mine worked just fine (note: this isn’t an insult – my PC is ancient).

      2. But its fucking Sony. Sony v Microsoft is like Republican v Democrat, neither one really moves from a very small window where one or the other is the least worst option.

        1. Square Enix for the WIN!

          1. Nein!

            I’m still unclear on this Final Fantasy Versus / XV business, and the next Deus Ex on mobile devices? Come on, guys!

  6. Woman suing police after she was fined $500 for making up rape it turns out was TRUE and committed by serial attacker
    The woman, identified only as D.M., was gagged, bound and sexually assaulted in her Lynnwood, Washington, home by Marc O’Leary in 2008
    Claims detectives Jerry Rittgarn and Sergeant Jeff Mason discounted her story and ignored evidence including doctors reports and DNA samples
    She was later fined $500 when she again insisted the rape did take place
    Case was reopened two years ago when O’Leary was found with her ID
    He was later convicted of a string of rapes and is serving a 327-year sentence in a Colorado prison

    The way the judge ignores her is just plain disgusting.

    1. Perhaps she should pat her lawyer’s ass. That’ll get the judge’s attention.

    2. Hedley Lamarr: Qualifications?

      Applicant: Rape, murder, arson, and rape.

      Hedley Lamarr: You said rape twice.

      Applicant: I like rape.

      1. Bart: Stampeding cattle.

        Hedley Lamarr: That’s not much of a crime.

        Bart: Through the Vatican?

        Hedley Lamarr: Kinkyyyy. Sign here.

  7. The curse of the world’s oldest person strikes again.

    1. Because no one younger than the World’s Oldest Person dies before them?

    2. This is like the “Sports Illustrated Cover” curse.

      1. Nothing worse than being on the Madden Box.

    3. And we wonder why the Japanese government is running out of money. I would imagine supporting geezers for 50 years after they retire has something to do with it. Jeez, the dude probably worked less total years than not work.

      1. we people wonder, that is

        1. There is speculation that a significant percentage of the reported deaths – for people over 80 – from the Fukushima disasters were people who had died years before. Since the reported deaths were basically anybody who couldn’t be accounted for with a breathing body it was hard to continue claiming grandma’s welfare check when you couldn’t show the gov’t where grandma is.

          A lot of people have some reason to believe that this is part of the reason Japanese have such longevity. Too often people don’t report a death to continue collecting benefits but then end up continuing the charade for years since there is no longer a body to match with the report they would have to file.

  8. Mars, Nestle, Hershey accused of chocolate price-fixing conspiracy in Canada

    Nestle, Mars and Hershey companies in Canada have been charged with conspiring with others to fix the price of chocolate, authorities said.

    Nestle Canada and Mars Canada both said they would “vigorously defend” themselves against the claims.

    Canada’s Competition Bureau said in a statement that Hershey Canada was expected to plead guilty later this month “for its role in the conspiracy to fix the price of chocolate confectionery products in Canada.”

    fat people rejoiced.

    1. I would just like to point out that all of these companies make exceedingly shitty chocolate.

      1. Especially Nestle.

        An amusing fact about Hershey’s chocolate. It has a distinctive flavor because the cocoa butter goes rancid in the process they use to process the chocolate.

        1. i thought it soured the milk

          1. You are correct.

            1. Jesus, I need to refresh more often.

          2. i thought it soured the milk

            You are correct.

          3. Hmm. I could have sworn that I read that the cocoa butter went rancid too.

            In any case, it is lousy chocolate. I really don’t like any milk chocolate much anymore.

            1. The town of Hershey, PA, smells good, though. True story.

            2. I really don’t like any milk chocolate much anymore.

              Cadbury is the only milk chocolate that I’ll eat.

            3. I really don’t like any milk chocolate much anymore.

              After not having one for several years (LC/HF and all that), I found out I don’t like Cola drinks any more. Can’t stand them. They all taste like they’re stale or something. Weird.

            4. “Hmm. I could have sworn that I read that the cocoa butter went rancid too.”

              You didn’t.

      2. the first time I had European Chocolate – at age 11 or 12 – I was amazed it could taste so damn good. I never looked at Hersheys the same.

        1. We had a French pal try a Twix bar. She took one bite and quickly spit it out, begging us to piss in her mouth to get rid of the taste.

          1. You pal sounds like an asshole.

          2. Twix, Snicker, Mars, all those are readily available in Europe. At least they are here.

          3. I bet she would have asked for that anyway.

    2. They are working with the Others?

    3. This is obviously a false spurrious charge because none of those companies products can really be called chocolate

  9. Google, Facebook and Microsoft want permission to be more transparent about the data requests they receive from the government.

    Maybe next time they’ll think ahead of the PR disasters when they get requests to fuck over their customers.

    1. A Scanner Darkly 2: Bob Arctor asks Agent Fred permission to narc on himself.

  10. Dinner for two? Impossible: there are only rations for one

    Yes, it’s Cosmarxpolitan

  11. what about sex while driving?

    Study: Driving A Car As Stressful As Skydiving

    Whether it’s your morning commute or just a quick drive to the store, a new study finds that driving is one of life’s most stressful activities.

    According to a recent study conducted by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Audi, driver responses in heart rate, face movements, skin conductance and other health vitals ? were given a stress level on par with that of a person skydiving.

    1. “We found that certain driving situations can be one of the most stressful activities in our lives. One study showed that getting side swiped by an oncoming car can be almost as stressful as jumping out of a plane.”

      Emphasis added. (Poor grammar remains.)

      No shit.

      But most drivers, I would say, are pretty fucking relaxed.

    2. I would say most months, driving is regularly the most stressful thing I do. But that depends a lot on what other people are doing. When there is nobody else on the road, it’s not stressful at all and I just zone out. When it rains and they suddenly forget how to drive and create an entirely unnecessary traffic jam, my blood pressure skyrockets.

      1. ^^THIS^^

        My girlfriend lately has accused me of being angry more and more. I told her I’m only ever angry when I’m driving (and when people tell me I’m angry and I’m not!).

        I don’t care if you text and drive, put on make up while driving, talk on your cell phone while driving, eat a sandwich while driving, shave while driving, whatever, but the emphasis should be on DRIVING first!

        1. and when people tell me I’m angry and I’m not!

          That is one of the best ways to make me angry.

          1. are you angry? huh? I bet you are!

        2. also, get out of the left fucking lane while doing all that stuff.

    3. Study: Driving A Car As Stressful As Skydiving

      what about sex while skydiving?

    4. Love can wait. Don’t sext while driving.

  12. whoops, that snide remark was meant for this story.

    Woman ‘molested in COURTROOM by marshal before he orders her to be arrested with no explanation’


    After she announced to the court house that he sexually assaulted her, Fox ordered her to be arrested at which point Contreras asks: ‘For what sir? Why would I be arrested? Can you please tell me?’

    1. I’m thinking she definitely got groped.

    2. Because fuck you, that’s why.

      And contempt of cop. Or contempt of court. RESPEC MA AUTHORITUH!!!!!

    3. For what sir? Why would I be arrested? Can you please tell me?

      So the pigs can finish the job in private.

  13. Riding down memory lane! The hobby horse-style bike that has no pedals or even a saddle

    Dumb! Da dumb! Dumb! Duuuumb!

    1. Oh no, we’re going to be overrun by wheelers just like Oz!

    2. Didn’t Mr. Garrison build something like that on South Park?

    3. For people for whom riding a fixed gear bike on the street is not silly enough.

      I bet it’s fun to mess around with, but way too expensive to be worth it.

    4. These design reduces pressure on the body and distribute weight while running [bad grammar from the Daily Mail caption]

      How the hell is this design where you’re just sort of hanging above the ground from the bike frame supposed to reduce pressure on the body? If anything it would seem to redistribute pressure from your ass region to your mid section and shoulders where the harness is strapping you in.

      This thing is retarded, and the new model looks nothing like any of the old 19th century pictures they include. Those actually have seats!

    5. How the fuck is this better than simply walking?

    6. I don’t get it. Looks like a huge pain in the ass to strap into.

      1. Looks like a huge pain in the ass to strap into.


  14. Another reason to not call the cops for anything. They’ll shoot kittens in front of your children.

    1. Any peasant who did the same thing would be in jail. But there’s no double standard. That’s just in the deranged mind of the bigorati.

    2. Have you ever tried herding them? I always hear how difficult that is.

      1. You’ve got to trick them into thinking it’s their idea.

        1. Cats are not women.

    3. Why does anyone even NEED a kitten?

      1. to make money from filming them for the intertubez

    4. Shooting kittens? Fucking monster.

      1. Serioulsy. That’s a waste of precious ammo. Whatever happened to tying them up in a burlap sack and drowning ’em?

      2. Any one of you monsters shoots my cat…I’ll kill ya.

    5. Shooting kittens? That sounds like… overkill.

      1. I had to kill a cat once – 6 shots with a .22 and he was still yowling and squirming. I think they have a brain the size of a peanut – shooting a cat is about the worst way to try to kill it.

        1. Maybe the nice ociffer likes yowling and squirming.

    6. Freeman said the homeowner in a follow-up interview said she was aware the cats were going to be euthanized but did not expect it to occur on her property. She explained she felt overwhelmed due to her children being inside the home and hearing the gunshots.

      Not in my backyard!

      1. I’m not terribly concerned that the cats were being euthanized, but for christ’s sake, you don’t just pull out a gun and shoot kittens in front of children and tell them “they went to kitty heaven” to make it ok. That’s just sick and cruel.

        1. I totally agree.

        2. “sick and cruel”

          That’s why they become cops.

        3. Meh.

          Kinda selfish. She knew they were going to kill them, but she didn’t want to witness it. She wanted to live in her little world where unicorns run free.

          Grow up on a farm where Bessie gets one between the eyes and then gets cut up and put in the freezer… You learn that everything dies, even cute unwanted kitties. Might actually be a positive life lesson for the kids in the long run.

          1. Sure. Barn cats should be a lesson to anyone about the dangers of fucking your half-sister, too, but it still happens every day in Arkansas.

    7. What the fuck? Even if the shelters are full, kittens always get adopted.

      And even if you have to kill them for some reason, don’t shoot them and leave a bloody mess on someone’s lawn.

      1. He was afraid of the fleas. No seriously.

          1. I’m afraid he made quite a circus out of it.

    8. Another reason to not call the cops for anything. They’ll shoot kittens in front of your children.

      Obviously the cop was in fear of his life.

  15. Bloomberg paints grim future of living conditions in city due to rising temperatures and floodwaters
    Waters could be 1 to 2.5 feet higher in New York City by 2050, according to updated data from city researchers
    8 percent of the city’s coastline could flood–and that’s just at high tide
    The mayor drew upon the new data as part of a Tuesday speech that proposed a $20 billion plan for new flood walls, levees, and other infrastructure to stem future climate-related damage


    1. Why is any of this a bad thing?

      1. Why is any of this a bad thing?

        Because he’s saying it’s ging to take $20B fucking dollars. You could surround NYC with a 20 foot wall for less than $20B.

        That said, this should be the ONLY that people consider when trying to deal with any natural variations. Learning how to cope with any changes that might come about is the correct way rather than extorting trillions in an effort to “stop” global warming.

        This is the right philosophy, but demanding $20B for levees is just plain extortion.

        1. You could surround NYC with a 20 foot wall for less than $20B.

          Been done. Call me Snake.

          1. The idea is to build the wall around the outskirts and then fill it with water.

          2. Doors in the wall would cost extra, so why bother installing them?

        2. I explained to a friend that climate change, assuming it’s indeed man-made, is a good problem to have given the technological progress humanity has achieved. I would prefer tackling CO2 emissions and oceanic acidification with modern technologies than I would famines, plagues, and near-universal immiseration with 17th-century technologies.

          My friend was unimpressed.

        3. Actually, I was wondering why it would be a bad thing if any of that flooding happened to NYC.

    2. Twenty billion dollars for levees and flood walls? Fuck, I’ll take that job. Someone get me the number for a sandbag manufacturer.

    3. “8 percent of the city’s coastline could flood– *and that’s just at high tide*”

      And what, its going to be worse at low tide?

    4. Did his grim picture of the future include him still being mayor? ‘Cause that goes beyond ‘grim’ and well into ‘horrifying’.

    5. How many predictions is this now for future flooding due to global warming that have not/wont come true?

      Jesus fucking christ how many times is Lucy gonna pull that ball back before Charlie learns?

      1. I’ve come to the conclusion that ALL predictions are at least 10X worse than what actually occurs. I think it’s human nature to inflate such things, particularly when trying to persuade others to follow a particular course of action. And they NEVER take technological advancements that may mitigate the problem into consideration.

        Didn’t the original Global Warming predictions have the oceans 3 feet higher by now?

        Take any prediction and divide by 10. Then assume we’ll come up with a technological solution to deal with the remaining mess.

        1. Anyone else remember all the scare videos of NYC under water, entire inhabited islands being swallowed up by the sea?

          Here’s some wonderful predictions from 1988 by that bastion of science, Dr James Hansen, claiming that the west side highway would be under the Hudson river in 20 – 30 years.

          Yup, looks totally underwater to me. Those personal subs look just like cars!

          1. Anyone else remember all the scare videos of NYC under water, entire inhabited islands being swallowed up by the sea?

            Wait, are you talking TMNT or C.H.U.D.?

  16. A South Carolina cop was fired for allegedly forcing a woman to expose and touch herself in exchange for help.

    Law enforcement are the only ones responsible enough to need to carry firearms.

    1. OTOH, he was fired 8 days after the complaint. So that’s the glass half-full side.

      1. There were either witnesses, video records or the department reaaaaaaally didn’t like this guy.

  17. The Amish Are Getting Fracked
    Their religion prohibits lawsuits?and the energy companies know it

    The Amish interpretation of the Christian bible prohibits the use of the courts: Except in rare circumstances, the Amish do not sue. This has created a unique problem in the region. Home to the largest Amish community in the world, Eastern Ohio sits squarely on top of the Utica and Marcellus Shale formations, which contain billions in oil and gas recoverable through advances in hydraulic fracturing technology, or fracking. From the portions of the Utica Shale play that underlie Ohio alone, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources has estimated that companies may be able to extract up to 15.7 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. Chesapeake Energy CEO Aubrey McClendon has estimated the value of the Utica’s resources at $500 billion.

    1. Pretty sure their religion doesn’t prohibit leasing mineral rights.

    2. They won’t sue, but I’ll bet they’re pretty handy with farm equipment.

      “Real shame about your drill, sir. How very clumsy of me.”

    3. I suspect this article is mostly bullshit – they won’t use the courts, but they can temporarily assign the rights to somebody who will.

      I remember my first trip into the area and seeing all the outhouses sitting right up at the road and then figuring out that they were actually were telephone booths – they can’t have phones in their houses but the edge of the right-of-way isn’t their property.

      Same thing with the barns – the Amish can’t have electricity and air conditioning and TVs in their houses but their cows can. If the farmer spends most of his time in the barn with his cows, it’s not his fault the cows like watching the same shows the farmer likes.

      Many religious rules are this way; if you lawyer up on God you can get Him on a technicality.

      1. If the farmer spends most of his time in the barn with his cows, it’s not his fault the cows like watching the same shows the farmer likes.

        “Hey, being a farmer is hard work! It’s not my fault I have to be out at the barn until bedtime.”

    4. Fuck them, I routinely catch those scumbags digging herbs on my property. They pretend they lost track of the very clearly posted property lines (and the fence too, I guess), and I’m too nice to shoot them.

      So far.

    5. Not a big fan of the Amish. Aside from the freedom of religion, way of life etc…

      I work on the side for my friend’s political consulting company that specialized in local options. I worked a job in Millersburg, OH last summer.

      Very Amish area and the Amish I interacted with gave the weirdest death stare to me as an outsider before I even pitched the local option. When in informed them it was for alcohol licensure for a restaurant that was to be built, the anger showed through their creepily docile tone.

      Unless I tried to convince them with logic. That did not work out well.

  18. I Hate to Break it to You, but You Already Eat Bugs

  19. Former President George W. Bush’s Image Ratings Improve
    Views of Bush more positive than negative for first time since 2005

    Americans’ views of former president George W. Bush have improved, with 49% now viewing him favorably and 46% unfavorably. That is the first time since 2005 that opinions of him have been more positive than negative.

    It’s okay, shreek. really.

    1. Imagine how good Obama is going to look when President Rubio takes a huge dump in the Oval Office.

  20. The world’s thinnest watch made from a single piece of flexible steel – and it’s got a battery that lasts 15 YEARS
    At 0.8mm thick, the CST-01 is thinner than a credit card and shows the time on electronic ink display
    It is made from a single piece of bendy stainless steel with a flexible electronic component built-in
    The watch’s battery charges in 10 minutes and will last for 15 years

    You won’t catch me wearing one, but it is pretty cool.

    1. Watches have batteries?

    2. Over 100$ for a watch? I’ll never pay that much for something my phone does already.

    3. Well I *was* interested, until I saw the ridiculously priced special charger that goes with it.

  21. Huge Texas supercell storm captured in amazing timelapse by photographer who spent four years chasing phenomenon

    Pretty cool.

    1. Pretty cool.

      Who are you, Miley Cyrus?

    2. I’m glad that Climate Change is providing you with such entertainment.

    3. The storm was around for four years and only now did anybody photograph it?

  22. Horse-drawn carriages, strict Victorian dress codes and NO cars: The Michigan island stuck in a charming time warp

    Judging by the paved roads and concrete sidewalks, they’ve got to be making exceptions to the ‘no motor vehicles’ rule.

    1. I’ve been there. Apparently the fire engine and ambulance are motorized, but not much else. Snowmobiles are allowed in winter.

      The golf course has pedal carts.

    2. Gotta love the old MGM Traveltalks shorts.

    3. bicycles are popular there too…

      *flashback to family vacation, trying to keep up with my older brothers on the world’s heaviest Schwinn*

    4. Been there. Smells like horseshit.

      ….like all of Michigan.

      1. show me where Michigan touched you.

        1. *holds up hand like mitten, point to thumb*

    5. Well government vehicles and POV’s for government employees are probably exempt – you know “for ‘official’ use only”.

  23. Homeless men and women are forced to live in CAVES as charities report surge in destitution
    Homelessness across Britain has risen by a third over the past three years
    Those who have lost their homes include middle classes hit by downturn
    Destitute people found living in squalid network of caves in Stockport

    But, but, but… I thought that didn’t happen in socialist European paradises! What gives?!?

    1. I thought that didn’t happen in socialist European paradises! What gives?!?

      It’s obviously that horrible, horrible austerity that all European countries (that have economic problems) tried.

    2. Are the caves really any worse than UK council housing?

    3. But, but, but… I thought that didn’t happen in socialist European paradises! What gives?!?


    4. Korporayshunz!

  24. Al Franken, meanwhile, says he was “very well aware” of the NSA’s surveillance but insists it’s not spying on Americans.

    He’s also apparently very well aware of which party is in the White House.

    1. Its true, they are just spying on Americans telephones and computers. Its Americans telephones and computers which are spying on Americans.

      Wow, can I be a Senator now!!!!

      1. The title of your book on NSA surveillance: The Traitor on My End of the Wire by failed senatorial candidate DJF

  25. Hmm, I read another version of this coffee rust story in which only organically grown crops were threatened because fungicides are quite effective against it. In any case, I am hoarding green coffee. Just ordered 40lbs. The gf is going to be annoyed. Until we have coffee next year and don’t have to bitch about the cost.

    1. Why would you drink organic coffee?

      1. I don’t. But the implication of the new article is that it is affecting ALL American coffee to a significant extent now.

        1. OK, my belief in your sanity is restored.

        2. Hoarder! Why do you hate america?

          1. Brett is a well known kulak. Word is that he is a wrecker too.

          2. Why do you hate america?

            Mostly because of the kiddiepop that rules our radio airwaves, but also because of the reality TV shows.

      2. If it’s good and available at not too much of a premium, I’ll buy organic coffee.

        1. Try Mayorga Coffee. Very nice roasts and they specialize in organics.

          I drink it for the taste and quality control, not that I give 2 shits about how its grown.

          1. JW never has a second cup of coffee at home…

      3. “Why would you drink organic coffee?”

        Cause the Metallic coffee tastes funny

  26. Doubt and the Double Helix
    If police find a DNA “match,” that doesn’t mean they have the right suspect.

    But here’s what actually happened. Another woman, who had Jama’s semen in her hair, had been at the center the previous day; both women were seen by the same doctor. The cleaning protocols used there were perfectly good for preventing infection, but far from sufficient to eradicate traces of DNA-bearing material from the examination room. Jama’s DNA was on the swab, but it had never been on the woman from the nightclub. The state government of Victoria prepared a thorough account of the case and its aftermath. There was no other evidence connecting Jama to the crime, and no one had reported seeing a college-aged Sudanese kid wandering around a bar where, demographically speaking, he would have stood out.* He was convicted anyway, and spent 15 months in jail before the conviction was quashed.

    1. This is the problem with the Maryland DNA database case – it could easily incriminate innocent people.

      1. That’s a feature, not a bug.

    2. Another woman, who had Jama’s semen in her hair,

      I’m not going to ask.

      1. Paging Sugarfree, Sugarfree to the white courtesy phone.

      2. I mean, I can see how it gets there, but you’re supposed to wash that out before you leave the house, lady.

        1. tell Ke$ha that

      3. He failed to keep his penis from ejaculating into her hair. It just went off. It was like it had a mind of its own.

  27. Brett, since it seems like our ladies are at about the same stage of pregnancy, make sure to get one of those elastic band things to hold her pants up unbuttoned – my wife has only gained 6 pounds but is a pretty small woman and loves that thing. She got the $28 one from Amazon but we discovered the next day that they sell one for $17 at Target that’s probably the same thing.

    1. Thanks, mate. The gf has given up wearing pants entirely between the waist gain and the heat. I’ll tell her.

      1. I hope she’s wearing something below the waist. ๐Ÿ˜

        1. Skirts and dresses, but only because of societal norms. I think she’d Donald Duck her way through this pregnancy if allowed.

          1. Haha, yeah that’s about all my wife wore.

          2. Yeah, my wife has been wearing a lot more skirts and dresses as well. She is pretty good at making clothes, but got frustrated when a dress she made specifically to be loose around the waist didn’t fit because her ribcage had expanded to fit the necessary extra lung volume.

          3. If you decide to do it again, try to conceive in July or June. That way she’s the most pregnant in the winter.

            Proper planning prevents piss poor performance.

            1. Well, we expected it to take more than a week after the pills wore off for her to get pregnant…

              1. The seed is strong.

              2. Inorite? I listened to her tell me how she didn’t think she could get pregnant for the three weeks between the time we quit being careful and her missing her period. Yeah, sure, hon. A girl in her mid-20s has a harder time catching a cold in a daycare.

            2. The best children are Scorpios!!!!

              I suppose you are going to tell me Astrology isn’t a real science, Mr Smartypants.

            3. If you decide to do it again, try to conceive in July or June.

              You people are no libertarians!

              The correct month to knock a woman up is March. That way for Christmas, you can give a middle finger to the IRS. And I should know, because I’ve done it two years running.

              1. are you and Banjos having another blessed event? If so, nice one!

                1. Of course we are. It’s been 6 months since the last one.

                  This one is likewise due in December.

              2. Due date is 11/30, so I am excited about the middle finger to the IRS part.

                1. Ooh, ours is 12/4. You’re not in SoCal, are you? We can try and schedule them the same day.*

                  *That day needs to be 12/2. We’re gonna try and have three kids in three years with the same birthday. We figure that will make parties more fun.

                2. 12/1, and I have already configured my tax withholding accordingly.

                  1. Holy shit. Neither of you two are planning on selling your baby’s middle name, are you? Because that’s our shtick!

                    Damn. I didn’t know our due dates were this close together. I really have been gone for too long. We need to get together and start planning on how we’re gonna train this libertarian army we’re starting.

                    1. If its a boy, we’ll just be happy if we can FIND a middle name by 12/1. This really is moving into Village of the Damned territory. My kid will probably have that white-blonde hair for the first couple years, but hopefully not the yellow glowing eyes.

                    2. If ours is a boy, we’ve pretty well decided on Lysander for a first name and we’re gonna let you people pick buy a middle name again. If it’s a girl, we’re probably going with Liberty or Peace or some other name sh’ll get shit for over the next 20+ years of her life.

                    3. Boy’s first name will be William just like every other eldest son of eldest son born to the L’s in ‘Murca. (William came over and founded the American ‘L’ dynasty, but I don’t know his daddy’s name. I’m actually the fourth, but my dad thought that shit was pretentious so he gave me a different middle name and no trailing generational. I agree. The tradition is cool, but we don’t have to be WASPy about it.) The middle name is what he’ll actually go by, like me, and the gf and I are not yet in agreement about that one.

                    4. I know where you’re coming from. I’m Kenneth Russell III and my son is KRS IV. He can do whatever he wants with the name, but I’ve assured him that if he doesn’t name his eldest son KRS V that he won’t be getting the family ring to pass down and that it’ll be buried with me.


                    5. You guys have a family ring? Fuck me for being born to poor Irishmen.

                    6. “Family ring” probably doesn’t do it justice. My 16 year old grandfather who had lied to join the Navy got it before he shipped out to the Pacific (he was a fireman whose boat got sunk and he sat in the water for 2 days before being rescued with about half of his crewmwn). That ring went through hell and back and he gave it to my dad before he shipped out to Vietnam (he was a Cobra pilot)…where it went through hell again. I keep it but don’t wear it because I don’t feel like I’ve earned the right to. I’ll give it to my son when he’s old enough to fight the Klingon/Romulan alliance that will attack us as soon as we develop warp technology.

    2. Party City is selling rainbow suspenders for a whopping $5.99.

      I didn’t look into the prices of clown pants.

    3. most maternity clothing is godawful. My wife wore overalls most of the time… and towards the end – my t-shirts and flight jacket.

    4. Are you guys discussing maternity wear? This is why there are no male libertarians.

  28. Prostitution, drugs alleged in State Department memo

    On Tuesday, Nicholas Merrill, a spokesman for Hillary Clinton, said Clinton was completely unaware of any of the investigations mentioned in the Office of the Inspector General’s reports and memos, including the case involving her personal security detail allegedly soliciting prostitutes.

    “We learned of it from the media and don’t know anything beyond what’s been reported,” Merrill told CNN in a written statement.

    1. “We learned of it from the media…

      prosecute the leaking bastards!

    2. We learned of it from the media and don’t know anything beyond what’s been reported

      Seriously, are they even trying anymore? Or is claiming to be ignorant and incompetent just the better option over being complicit?

      1. Hillary’s core supporters won’t abandon her ever – every scandal will just convinced them that she’s being persecuted.

        She could rent a private island and cross-breed accountants with scorpions to create a super-race of IRS agents, and her supporters won’t blame her – they’ll blame anyone who tries to investigate her behavior.

        1. Hillary’s core supporters won’t abandon her ever

          Oh, I know. After her questioning on the Benghazi attack, while the rest of the world was facepalming, I saw several Hillary lovers saying things like “YOU GO GIRL” and “WAY TO HANDLE THOSE JERKS” on fb. One, that made me almost vomit, was a direct cheering of the “What difference” quote. It is sickening.

  29. I eagerly await production of my robot Motie arm. I will have a goddamn gripping hand!

    1. It would make it easier to crush orphan skulls in my fist.

    2. you’ll need two robot arms for changing “diapers”, as you lot call them

      1. What else are they called? “Nappies” is a racist term here.

    3. My father used to bag on me unmercifully for watching the Six Million Dollar Man as a kid.

      “Impossible nonsense.”

      I send him all these articles now. Technology is wonderful.

  30. Anyone else notice how The Wall Street Journal has doubled down on statism recently? From cheering the government’s spying in the name of security and begging for more to claiming any curtailment of NYC’s Stop-and-Frisk will “increase crime rates nationwide,” the WSJ has been manically fellating the State in a way I haven’t seen before. Maybe I shouldn’t have expected better, but I did.

    1. Yeah — my subscription is up and renewing home deliver is north of $300 for the year. I used to love the WSJ, but it may no longer be worth the cost.

      1. I dropped my subscription a year ago. Honestly, reading a newspaper seems awfully dated, like I was reading yesterday’s news.

    2. Yeah, it’s been frustrating. They’ve always had a hard-on for the GWOT and NYPD, though – it’s just that these issues are coming up more than where they’re good: the budget, crony capitalism, immigration, trade, and regulation.

      FWIW, the ridiculousness about ending stop and frisk was written by Heather Mac Donald who has always loved her some cop. I don’t think the Journal is quite so extreme in their love of random searches.

    3. I haven’t read it with any regularity since September 11, 2001.

      1. Why, what happened then?

  31. Today’s foray into the fetid swamp of partisan idiocy which is Morning Joke featured Scarborough whining about how Snowden looks like “a weasel” whose face should not be shown on television followed almost immediately by the clip of Clapper lying his ass off to a Congressional committee. Unsurprisingly, nobody called Clapper a weasel.

    1. nobody called Clapper a weasel.

      that’s because he looks like a penis

    2. In his defense, people with Down Syndrome do have a tendency to blurt out inappropriate comments.

  32. While at the gym this morning there was a story on the news about a bunch of bomb threats all over the country. Am I the only one that finds that to be a little suspicious given the events of the past week or so?

    1. It’s finals week.

  33. Andrew McCarthy’s ‘Here’s to the Police State’ Article

    Rand Paul’s ‘Here’s to Crime’ Act
    His interpretation of the Fourth Amendment would be a boon for lawbreakers.

    The notorious “civil rights” lawyer William Kunstler, in addition to his work on “political” cases (i.e., anti-American radical-leftist and terrorist cases), gladly made himself available to mobsters, too ? after all, someone had to pay the bills. Invited to a dinner once after a job well done for a mafia don, he hoisted a glass to the assembled capos and button men, toasting them, “Here’s to crime!”

    Gleeful crooks across the country could be giving the same toast if Senator Rand Paul gets his way. The self-styled libertarian Republican from Kentucky, firmly in his father’s tradition of overreaction to imagined constitutional violations (or, perhaps I should say, violations of an imaginary Constitution) is outraged by reports that the Defense Department’s National Security Agency (NSA) is collecting “metadata” on phone calls of millions of Americans. He has responded by introducing an absurd piece of legislation he calls the “Fourth Amendment Restoration Act of 2013.”

    It gets worse from there. The good news is that the commenters are giving him hell.

    1. I was telling you guys yesterday that McCarthy is a lousy writer.

    2. NR used to at least have Bill Buckley’s sense of style to class it up. Ever since he passed it has been overrun by the crypto-fascists Gore Vidal accused Buckley of being.

    3. The nice thing is that most of the comments rip into McCarthy e.g.

      “No surprise Andy, as a former fed prostituter, you support any case that reinforces the concept of ownership of the people by the state.
      Citizen, if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear. Until we decide otherwise. Now bow down and be gone with you.”

    4. For someone who professes such support for law enforcement, McCarthy sure seems to make a lot of calls to 1-900-SEX-CHAT.

      Ha ha, just kidding, it would be illegal for me to access those records, so I know nothing about whether McCarthy accesses phone-sex lines. As if such information should be made available regardless of his privacy rights!

    5. I was trolling CNN yesterday and was pleasantly surprised by the number of pro 4A posts.

  34. Did anyone watch Cavuto last night. Some former undersecretary of something was slamming Snowden, and then they got into the issue of extradition, and started talking about France. (I thought Snowden was in Hong Kong). Then they interviewed the guy who tried to extradite Roman Polanski from France.

    What. The. Fuck. Trying to equate Snowden to Polanski ? I guess props to Cavuto for the most vile effort to smear Snowden.

    1. I find this surprising as cavuto is typically pretty small L libertarian.

    2. I saw this and was disgusted.

  35. Anyone else notice how The Wall Street Journal has doubled down on statism recently?

    The WSJ editorial board has been barreling down that road for more than a decade.

    1. Yes, but I must have been lulled by all their criticism of the Obama admin. Fuckin’ fool me once…

  36. ‘Support required’: Calgary eliminates letter grades for students up to grade nine in an attempt to save children from failure

    The Calgary Board of Education is moving to save children from failure. Under a proposed new marking scheme, the board is to relabel such students as “support required.” If they improve, their skills will be upgraded to “emerging.”

    1. “Kid, you’re dumb as shit and your grades are terrible but hey, you aren’t a failure, just support required.”

    2. Ah, the Ostrich strategy.

    3. Maeby got a crocodile in maths

      1. Has anybody else tried to watch the new Netflix Arrested Development? It just…isn’t very good, at least in the first few episodes.

        I enjoy Lillyhammer, though.

        1. I watched the first 2 episodes and bailed. It was pretty much as bad as I expected.

          1. It gets a lot funnier. I was a big fan, though it’s not “the same” as the old stuff.

        2. It gets very good – but like the original series you have to get through the first few episodes before there’s enough stuff for the funny call backs and brick jokes.

    4. It’s “ninth grade”, not “grade nine”.

      1. nuh-uh. It’s Year Nine

        1. And the month of Germinal…or is it Thermidor?

    5. I had a couple of teachers in HS that gave A, B or incomplete as grades. I thought that was a pretty good system. If you turned in work of less than B quality, you had to work on it more until it was good enough.
      Seemed like a much better way to try to avoid failure. Of course, it didn’t work to well for the kids who didn’t give a fuck. But honestly, I think everyone would be better of if those kids just dropped out.

  37. Shero presser at 11. Blysma stay or go?

    1. Yikes. I predict (not necessarily today): Fleury, Malkin, Iginla, Morrow, and either Letang or Orpik traded. Bylsma gets another year’s chance.

      1. They use the Fleury and Malkin trades to beef up defensively and pick up another good goaltender. Vokoun gets a solid chance at starting next year.

        1. I really don’t see them moving malkin. but everyone else on that list is a possibility.

          1. I think Niskanen goes too. Keep Jokinen.

            1. Disco Dan’s gone, Letang gone (though doubtfully announced today) and the rentals are all gone.

              1. I wouldn’t be surprised if they let Bylsma go but I don’t think it’s the right move.

                1. Maybe if Cindy intercedes on his behave he could stay.

  38. Speaking of news which should surprise absolutely no one, apparently 1984 is selling like hotcakes, these days.

    Fantasy sells.

    1. well O’Brien is a dreamy vampire

    2. Fantasy sells.

      If only we were as free as Winston Smith.

    3. Kind of like Atlas Shrugged flew off the shelves when the heavy government economic interventions ramped up in ’08.

  39. Russ Roberts has announced (via the Facebook page of EconTalk) that retarded pig-fucker Michael Lind will be a guest on an upcomming episode of EconTalk to discuss libertarianism. Consider yourselves warned.

    1. That’s semi-awesome, except Roberts isn’t mean enough.

  40. Michael Lind doubles down:

    My previous Salon essay, in which I asked why there are not any libertarian countries, if libertarianism is a sound political philosophy, has infuriated members of the tiny but noisy libertarian sect, as criticisms of cults by outsiders usually do. The weak logic and bad scholarship that suffuse libertarian responses to my article tend to reinforce me in my view that, if they were not paid so well to churn out anti-government propaganda by plutocrats like the Koch brothers and various self-interested corporations, libertarians would play no greater role in public debate than do the followers of Lyndon LaRouche or L. Ron Hubbard.

    Libertarians: Still a cult: Simply note libertarianism’s fatal flaw and you’ll get an enraged, hysterical response. They still don’t get it

    1. we’re a cult because we don’t worship their state god.

      Actually, we’re more like atheists than cultists.

      1. Oh dear, another discussion on atheism. What’s next? Another discussion on deep-dish “pizza”? ๐Ÿ˜‰

        1. Circumcision!

      2. We’re a cult because we worship liberty and the free market.

    2. Mikey Lind: Still a cunt.

    3. I am as much of a conservative as I am a libertarian. And I will usually be more willing to defend self described conservatives than doctrinaire libertarians. But even I find Lind embarrassing. He is just embarrassing. He is basically the Thomas Frank of the right.

      1. Yes, Red Tony. We know.

        1. Go fuck yourself dickhesd.

          1. Ha ha!

            1. That was funny!

              Seriously though John, you being more R than L is one of your best qualities.

              By that I mean that (as someone who was a former R turned into an L) I believe that bridging the gap between republicans and libertarians is very important.

              Sometimes you seem like Red Tony, but it is rare and overall I think you are more libertarian than you do.

    4. So his response consists of, “Let me talk shit for a paragraph, mention that we ignore ‘utopian anarchism’ as if everyone knows the reason why, and then just list all the unlibertarian things about the US between the Civil War and FDR.” And…fail to respond at all to the complete and utter logical takedowns of my previous post.

    5. What a douchebag.

    6. If your blood pressure can stand it, notice the massive amount of projection in the comments that Lind’s defenders engage in when confronted.

      Michael Lind: Still an obsequious bootlicker.

    7. My previous Salon essay, in which I asked why there are not any libertarian countries,

      Because the various philosophies that reside under the libertarian tent are just that, political philosophies, not systems of government.

      Anything else stupid you want to ask?

      1. I’ve seen a couple very good, simple responses to Lind and you would have to be:

        A) A True Believer
        B) A mendacious shitweasel making a buck off the status quo
        C) A trolling cunt; or
        D) All of the above

        in order to not understand and admit just how fucking wrong you are.

        1. I’ll take D.

        2. And what crawled up your ass, pray?

          1. I think JW was saying that is what the responses would be to Lind…not to you.

            1. The Leftenant Colonel is correct, but let’s leave my kinks out of it.

    8. After reading Lind’s drivel his retort basically boils down to this: others have said the US was nearly a libertarian society between 1865-1932. But they had segregation and tariffs, therefore libertarianism has no examples of governance and is thus a cult.

      He’s grasping at straws for his argument. He still hasn’t explained why a type of society has not yet existed means it cannot exist. If you accept his argument, than no true modern conservative state can exist, and no true modern liberal state, as their are no pure examples of either of those two philosophys.

    9. When they stop ignoring you and start attacking you, you know you’re making progress.

      They are scared.

  41. Ron Paul says the government might try to kill Snowden
    Says they might use a cruise missile or drone strike.

    Too obvious. No, he’ll die of a mysterious heart attack or commit suicide with undigested sleeping pills in his stomach. Whatever mode the government assassins use these days.

    1. Paul is off the reservation on that one. I have no faith in Obama at this point. But even Obama would not try that. Since whatever damage Snowden has done is already done, he is not a continuing threat, thus killing him would be murder even under the Administration’s screwed up legal view.

      1. I agree with John. They’ll probably use the Breitbart Method.(TM)

      2. You’re saying they’re not above murder?

        1. Andrew Breitbart and his coroner say hello from the great beyond.

          1. His coroner?

            1. The coroner died of mysterious poisoning a few days after the autopsy of Breitbart.

              1. Seriously?

                1. http://www.thedailybeast.com/a…..eaths.html

                  Los Angeles police won’t know for a few more weeks why Michael A. Cormier, a longtime county coroner’s autopsy technician and photographer, died on April 20. But they do know it had nothing do with the March 1 death of conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart?no matter what you read elsewhere.

                  And we all know we can trust the police. They never lie.

                    1. Wow indeed.

                    2. I mean….like….how am I not supposed to believe conspiracy theories?

      3. But even Obama would not try that

        Probably not. I’m more afraid of the king’s men taking “will nobody rid me of that troublesome [man]” literally.

        1. The IRS seems to have done that with the Tea Party.

          1. At least Henry II finally repented and submitted himself to a public flogging [RACIST!].

            1. I love the opening scene of Becket.

      4. Since whatever damage Snowden has done is already done, he is not a continuing threat, thus killing him would be murder even under the Administration’s screwed up legal view.

        They gotta set an example of him so that no one else gets an attack of morals soon.

    2. “Snowden appears to have fired an entire cylinder from a .38 into the back of his head, before jumping off the balcony of his hotel.”

      1. Mr. Furious: [talking about Carmine the Bowler] Seems there was a little controversy there regarding your father’s death.

        The Bowler: Yes, the police said he fell down an elevator shaft. Onto some bullets.

        The Blue Raja: You know, I’ve alwas suspected a bit of foul play there.

        The Bowler: As have I.

        1. “accidentally brutally stabbed himself in the stomach while shaving”

          “accidentally brutally cut his head off while combing his hair”

          1. Do you think he chained himself up before or after he decapitated himself?

    3. I’m thinking the plane he takes to Iceland will suffer a mysterious engine failure either somewhere over the ocean or at least somewhere over a very extradition friendly country

  42. I didn’t see if this showed up on 24/7, but nobody reads that anyway. And I didn’t see it posted anywhere else:

    Greece shuts down state broadcaster as part of “austerity” measures.

    SLD about how there shouldn’t be a state broadcaster. (And it amuses me how the people who bitch most about alleged media concentration tend to be the same people who love the government 800-lb media gorillas like the BBC/CBC/Australian Broadcsating Corporation/etc.) But I wonder if this isn’t really the same as the US stopping White House tours and saying, “See what this horrid ‘austerity’ is making us do?”

    1. Somebody on my Facebook feed was complaining about the “fascist” government of Greece shutting down state broadcasting. So, wait. Wouldn’t it be a good thing if a fascist government shut down its own government broadcasters? (I mean, assuming you’re not a fascist, amirite?)

  43. http://washingtonexaminer.com/…..le/2531627

    More Americans remember George W. Bush approvingly than negatively, according to a new survey released with Washington mired in scandals and President Obama under fire for expanding his predecessor’s surveillance of Americans.

    Somewhere in a box on a sidewalk a homeless man who calls himself shreek is crying and sobbing.

    1. see above. I also included a shreek stab ๐Ÿ˜‰

      1. Sorry I missed that.

  44. if they were not paid so well to churn out anti-government propaganda by plutocrats like the Koch brothers and various self-interested corporations



    1. Libertarians are like 2% of the population. They have virtually no representation in the major media or popular culture or academia. They have two small think tanks, one of which CATO acts like an annex of the Brookings Institute half of the time. And that is it. Even Rand Paul doesn’t call himself one. Ron Paul is really the only person in Congress that has ever referred to himself as one.

      Other than the Kochs, who give a whopping $15 million dollars a year to political cause, just what “plutocrats” are Libertarian? Name a single billionaire who isn’t either a-political or a total off the wall lefty?

      Lind is either a paranoid who probably needs to be institutionalized or a disgusting liar. Either way that any magazine would enable his ravings says very poor things about the magazine.

      1. Actually, it appears Lind has The Fear. Which is awesome.

        1. Obama being in office and being so bad is a real problem for professional concern trolls like Lind. Concern trolling the right is hard when they are not in power and when a leftist president is fucking up so badly. If Obama were not such a fuck up, people like Lind and Brooks could write thousands of words concern trolling the right about how Obama has changed everything and they need to be more like Obama if they want to win. But since Obama is turning into an even bigger disaster than his worst critics thought, they can’t do that. So what are they to do? Concern troll about the “libertarian menace” seems to be their solution.

          1. John| 6.12.13 @ 9:45AM |#
            “Obama being in office and being so bad is a real problem for professional concern trolls like Lind.”

            Yep, so he invents an imaginary enemy.

      2. They have virtually no representation in the major media or popular culture or academia.

        Thankfully, our one representation in pop culture is Mr. Thursday Night himself, Ron Swanson.

      3. Libertarians are like 2% of the population. They have virtually no representation in the major media or popular culture or academia.

        Yes, but our superpowers make us a threat.

        Seriously, if the smear campaign against libertarians isn’t a shitting-in-your-pants fear response to the gig being up, I don’t know what is.

      4. ” Name a single billionaire who isn’t either a-political or a total off the wall lefty?”

        Peter Theil, not sure if he is a billionaire or just really rich but John Mackey (Whole Foods), and I can’t remember his name off the top of my head but the former CEO of BB&T bank are all basically libertarian all come to mind

    2. Yeah. I think I’ve earned a bit of Koch libertarian lucre in my day. Where the fuck is it?

      1. you celebrated by getting drunk and stuffing 20 dollar bills into Naomi Klein’s granny panties while claiming you would show her your shock doctrine. What a lunchtime that was.

        1. Oh, right. (That afternoon’s still a bit hazy, you understand.)

          1. Please, people, I’m *trying* eat lunch.

  45. Guns are bad, mmkay?

    The State Coroner has today praised a 12-year-old boy for shooting dead a convicted criminal who was attacking his mother in their Coburg home.

    Bonus points: The Federal Government bought back guns 15 years ago to save us from being attacked by criminals with guns

    1. He was incredibly lucky.

      “I am satisfied also that when shooting Mr Ferman he did not intend to kill him.
      “I accept that he was in fact trying to aim lower on the body, as he said himself, ‘trying to aim at his legs’.”


      So as long as you take the gun from the bad guy, and as long as you don’t intend to kill them, then two years later some government asshole will graciously pardon your killing of another peasant.

      Fuck that. God bless the NRA.

      1. In fairness, maybe they are just saying that as a way to justify to the various religious anti gun fanatics not prosecuting him. I could see being a DA and going “well sure the kid shot him in the head, but he is just a kid and is probably a bad shot, so I conclude he was aiming for the legs.”. Maybe not, but possible.

        1. Oh yeah, but that’s the difference between here and everywhere else. Here, if you shoot a guy assaulting your mother in your home, even in the most insane liberal states you have the presumption of being in the right. You can use deadly force in that situation. You should use deadly force in that situation.

          1. And thank God for that. As far as I am concerned if a stranger is on your property and refuses to leave or confronts you, you have an absolute right to assume he is there to do you great harm and thus are justified in shooting him or her. The Castle Doctrine is a fundamental human right. If being safe and secure in your home is not a human right, what is?

          2. Note that this happened in Australia. I’m almost surprised that they didn’t find something to charge the boy with anyway.

  46. Get a load of this: the Washington Post is now going to start putting paid advertisements and press releases in their Op/Ed section with the name “Sponsored Views”. That ought to do wonders for their credibility, I’m sure.

    1. First paid editorial by Booz Allen Hamilton?

  47. even Obama would not try that.

    That’s a limb I won’t go out on. But of course, if Snowden were to expire prematurely (or simply be disappeared), you-know-who will only learn the tragic news by watching Morning Joke.

    1. I will say this. If Snowden turns up dead, I will have to rethink a lot of things. I mean a lot of things because that would be outright revenge murder on the part of the US. Whatever you think about Al Walacki, he was a leading member of Al Quada. If he had been in Afghanistan rather than Yemen, the legality of killing him would not be in doubt. Killing Snowden would be a completely different animal.

      1. They’ll have him murdered to send a message to any more potential whistle blowers.

        1. Yes. And that would be unimaginably bad.

        2. Yep.

      2. Actually this would be a really good way for someone not friendly to the US to really discredit out government.

        Just find him before the CIA does and make sure he dies under “mysterious” circumstances, regardless of the facts everyone will believe that it was a US government ordered hit which will guarantee Republicans taking control of the Senate next year followed quickly by impeachment hearings against Obama and all of the political turmoil that would cause.

  48. If Snowden turns up dead, I will have to rethink a lot of things.

    Don’t worry. If Snowden turns up dead, they will leave NO STONE UNTURNED in their relentless global manhunt for the foul fiend who croaked him.

    1. Special Investigator O.J. called out of retirement!

    2. I assume Obama will use the OJ strategy and start personally searching the golf courses of the world for the killer.

    3. Maybe they can send the crack team that has nabbed the Benghazi killers?

    4. Kay Adams: Do you know how naive you sound, Michael? Presidents and senators don’t have men killed.

      Michael: Oh. Who’s being naive, Kay?

  49. a question that’s been rolling through my mind –

    let’s say you had (for NSA spying purposes) the ability to magically transform the structure of the U.S. government to something more liberty friendly – what would your new version be? More of a Parliament? Or ?

    I’m struggling of thinking of a system that would minimize corruption and cronyism. Perhaps the ancient Romans had it right with the Triumvirate, multiple leaders who actively despised each other. Of course that led to plenty of bloody intrigue.

    1. I think the US separation of powers structure has clearly failed the cause of liberty. I’d like to see some states go to a parliamentary system and see how it goes.

      1. I think the US separation of powers structure has clearly failed the cause of liberty. I’d like to see some states go to a parliamentary system and see how it goes.

        Too bad parliamentary systems have been tried repeatedly and resulted in Western Europe.

        Our system works better at staving off tyranny and socialism than all others, but like all things human, it inevitably fails.

      2. The powers were not only meant to be separated, but adverse.

        Now we have a gutless legislature, a spineless judiciary, and a headless executive that runs on pure bureaucratic inertia.

      3. Parliamentary systems are pretty unresponsive to the needs of the constituents – outside of getting elected MP in your district you’re far more beholden to the party machine for any place in government.

    2. “I note one proposal to make this Congress a two-house body. Excellent — the more impediments to legislation the better. But, instead of following tradition, I suggest one house of legislators, another whose single duty is to repeal laws. Let the legislators pass laws only with a two-thirds majority… while the repealers are able to cancel any law through a mere one-third minority. Preposterous? Think about it. If a bill is so poor that it cannot command two-thirds of your consents, is it not likely that it would make a poor law? And if a law is disliked by as many as one-third is it not likely that you would be better off without it?”

      The Moon is a Harsh Mistress
      –Robert A. Heinlein

    3. Disband any legislative body that passes a law later deemed unconstitutional and ban those members from holding any elected or appointed political office ever again.

      All federal laws sunset every two years and must be reauthorized.

      Governors are the “Senate” but do not assemble or live in DC, they only vote to ratify laws passed in the House.

      House Committee appointments are randomly assigned with every new Congress.

      2/3rds to pass, 1/3rd to repeal.

      1. i was totally expecting some form of scat pron committee from you too…I am disappoint.

    4. This is wbat I have been getting at with commenta about a Constitutional Convention. Obviously the best way to reform is to use the lawful means set out in the Constitution itself. Libertarians need to have some sort of working group to develop solid proposals for a founding document that would be focused, lile an engineering specification, on certain goals. In this case the goals would be preservation of liberty of all types. I don’t have enough time to go in to it now but I have some ideas written down. Perhaps a group blog would work well. If nothing else it could serve as a practical attempt at learning from the past and gaming out future political structures. I get frustrated with reading little else but criticism of the status quo with no real discuasion.of practical methods for change.

      1. I fear that if there were to be a Constitutional Convention, positive rights would be enshrined in the document. Every American would be guaranteed health care and basic living standards to be provided by the government. Never-you-mind that providing those things is what is bankrupting the government in the first place.

        Liberty is dead. Humanity is returning to its default state of slavery.

        1. That’s my concern as well. All the more reason to have solid proposals laid out with compelling arguments. If that doesn’t work, time to move to Costa Rica or something.

          1. Compelling arguments are no match for raw emotion.

            If you don’t want the government to do something, then you do not want it to be done at all! Who else will do it? Be specific? Who, exactly? See? You can’t answer! That means you don’t want anyone to have health care or a basic standard of living! You fucking monster! Nothing you say can be taken seriously!

          2. at this point I’m all for liberty-minded individuals getting out of Dodge. Of course a bunch of anti-social/aspies trying to work together may be a bridge too far. lulz.

        2. Liberty is dead. Humanity is returning to its default state of slavery.

          I feel compelled, as usual, to be more optimistic about human nature. History points to our progression towards more liberty not less. Granted it is a long game and we seem to be in them middle of a downturn.

        3. I’m not so sure it’s necessarily turning back to slavery. The governments are reverting to more brutal states but technology is outpacing them at subterfuge and subversion.

    5. 1. Make the 2nd runner up in the presidential election VP

      2. Senators and congressmen are elected in state (vice federal) elections and are paid by the state (not federal government)

      3. All laws must be passed by a 2/3 majority in both houses and unless there is a 3/4 majority then the law has an expiration date (say 10 years) automatically.

      4. The supreme court has the authority and responsibility to review new law for constitutionality before that law goes into effect and can veto new law like the president – i.e. *all* three branches must review and approve new law.

      5. Any law may be repealed by a simple majority of either house without veto by the other branches.

      6. Attaching a rider to a bill forces that bill to start the approval process all over again.

      7. Forbid the executive from making *any* regulation – if they need regulations they can submit proposals to congress for consideration.

      8. Make explicitly clear that the federal government has authority for *external* dealings with other countries, military actions outside the US (inside they must defer to state governments when deploying troops for defensive operations) and is a final arbiter for *disputes* between states but can not make pre-emptive regulations to “regulate commerce . . . among the several states, and with the Indian tribes”.

    6. Hmm,

      1) Repeal the 17th Amendment

      2) Remove the power to impeach the President from the Congress and give it to the State Govenors, any state govenor can call for an impeachment hearing at any time and 50% of state govenors voting to impeach sends the case to the Supreme Court

      3) Constitutional Amednment granting any US Citizen standing to challenge the Constiutionality of any law at any time

      4) Constitutional Amendment barring any officeholder who votes in favor of or approves any law subsequently found unconstitutional from ever holding any federal elected or appointed office again

      5) Constitutional Amendment preventing Congress from delegating their lawmaking authority to the executive branch agencies and requiring a full voice vote to approve all drafted regulations

      Those wouldn’t fix everything but they would be a start.

      1. There are a few downsides to #4. Firstly, the Supreme Court would be more hesitant to strike down laws if they knew it was going to get a lot of congresscritters kicked out.

        Also, some laws are struck down as being unconstitutional when there is a huge debate around the issue, and sometimes they are struck down because of small details.

        Plus, there are several states that are trying to pass laws to invalidate in those states any pending gun laws from Congress. If these state laws get overturned in SCOTUS because of the supremacy clause, a lot of state level politicians would be barred from running for federal office.

      2. Honestly, even if we repealed the 17th, why do we even need a Senate anymore? Technology is advanced enough where the state legislatures can just directly vote on bills.

        Regarding #4, you’re naive if you think this won’t be abused by some living constitution types to completely annihilate their political opposition in Congress. “The Court finds that repealing the PATRIOT ACT violated everyone’s constitutional right not to be the victim of a terrorist attack. All eight civil libertarians in Congress are barred from office for life!”

    7. “transform the structure of the U.S. government to something more liberty friendly?”

      Reinstate duels at dawn, with pistols and seconds.

      1. “Reinstate duels at dawn, with pistols and seconds.”

        That would shake the entire government to its core. Anybody with just a fledgling pair hanging – once elected – could intimidate any and every currently serving member of congress right out of DC. He would be like an A-10 Warthog flying over a 19th century battlefield.

    8. 75% required to pass any law at the Federal level. 50% to repeal.

  50. Woodland Metal

    “Black Lake Ni?stang” is from Agalloch’s latest album Marrow of the Spirit (2010). Because of it’s epic 17+ minute length, this song has a pretty good range of what they’re doing on this album.

    1. I saw them last summer. Really good show.

  51. Has anyone been looking at their Facebook feeds these past couple of weeks of their leftists friends? Many of them have strangely been silent on all of these scandals hitting this administration. The left’s cognitive dissonance is a beautiful thing to behold. Their Chosen One is just as bad as the last one, and while some in the blogosphere and media try to rationalize it away, the average lefty is feeling extremely uncomfortable and strangely silent about it all as they shift uncomfortably in their seats. I wonder if many are just turning off the news and trying to get their minds on other things.

    I find it quite humorous and refreshing. Although with the lastest shooting rampage involving an AR-15, some of them sparked a little but quickly died down again.

    1. Did he use the rifle? In the picture I saw it was just an upper. Or maybe they took the AR apart before they let the media photograph it.

    2. It’s also summer, so people are (hopefully) doing other things than following politics.

      1. well, they do post stuff, and still quite a bit, but it’s much less political now.

    3. It’s been awesome. Two or three friends haven’t said anything on twitter in days. Only occasional retweets of something, and nothing even close to political.

    4. I have noticed the same thing. All of my lefty friends have become incredibly quiet about politics on Facebook. I have numerous friends who would constantly put up various insufferable bullshit about politics. And all of them have stopped. It is like politics no longer interests them.

      I have said this before, for most liberals, being liberal is part of their personal identity and self worth. The smug feeling of supporting the right side that believes in civil rights and civil liberties and privacy and standing against the evil totalitarian Republicans is a big part of why they are liberal. The shadow of Nixon and the smug feeling of “we are not that” (forgetting of course that Johnson was) looms large. These scandals really make it hard for liberals to feel that way. It doesn’t turn them into Republicans or Libertarians. But it demoralizes them and causes more than a few of them to turn away from politics.

      1. Which only shows that they are unprincipled pieces of shit.

    5. I’ve actually seen a few start turning on Obama. It’s been quite refreshing and comforting.

      People that normally ignore or argue with my Libertarian posts have been liking and agreeing with my posts about the spying. I almost died of shock when several of my lefty friends liked the “Obama visited with the leader of China” comment I stole from here yesterday. Thanks again for that one.

    6. I’ve had one guy who posts left-wing tripe relentlessly that flipped his shit when this story on the NSA broke. He’s righteously pissed about it, to his credit. The rest have been silent.

      To be fair, most of my Facebook feed is kid antics and vacation announcements anyway.

  52. I find it quite humorous and refreshing

    This. Oh yes. This.

  53. that would be unimaginably bad.

    I have a lurid imagination.

  54. The Atlantic writes an article about how this time, the libs are really thinking hard about possibly leaving their abusive boyfriend after too many of their friends saw his bad side. Unless he promises to change and really means it this time.

    1. I can change.
      I can chaaange.
      I can learn to keep my promises
      I swear it!
      I will open up my heart,
      and I will share it.
      Any minute now
      I will be born again!

    2. Yeah, the lapdogs are gonna get upset if the food is 2 minutes late. Until he puts the dish down.

  55. Unless he promises to change and really means it this time.

    “He only hits me because he loves me so much.”

  56. House Committee appointments are randomly assigned with every new Congress.

    I think this might be surprisingly effective.

  57. It’s also summer, so people are (hopefully) doing other things than following politics.

    I think this is why you’re seeing a push for Markey in the MA senate race on the lefty blogs. This should be a cakewalk.

  58. http://www.foreignpolicy.com/a…..since_1798

    Oh, well, in that case…

  59. Bacon flavored coffee!

    1. Upon further reading they make bacon flavored condoms and lube. I know bacon makes everything better, but that’s going a little too far.

  60. If the group I work with were in the newspaper or magazine business, they’d be out of business before the first issue ever came out. Because they wouldn’t be able to produce a first issue. Because they feel that design and editing-by-committee is a great and wonderful thing. They think that nobody having the absolute and final word on something is awesome and “inclusive”. They think that the more people that send edits to a web developer, the better, even if those edits are contradictory.

    Your tax dollars at work.

    And FML.

    1. My life as a government IT contractor:

      Month 5 of a six month contract, Meeting 147: “…now that we’ve all agreed on a color scheme and font, and we’re mostly happy with the button placement on the login screen, the developers have asked us to tell them what it is we want this application to do.”

      1. HAHAHAHA! We’ve had the same. There was an approximately 2-month argument about which shade of blue to use on a web site. A web site that was decommissioned after a new head honcho came on board 2 years later.

        The project I’m currently working on is the worst one yet, though, because there’s no documentation, no deadlines and no plan. Hell, I didn’t even have a project number to put on my weekly report until yesterday, even though I’ve been at this for 2 months!

        1. Hell, I didn’t even have a project number to put on my weekly report until yesterday

          Jesus. The government must be falling apart if it takes 2 months to get your TPS code. Maybe the BuSab strategy is working.

        2. I had a mobile and web app built from zero to prod in under 8 weeks. It aint always good to be king but it can sure be efficient.

      2. I needed committee approval to fix a misspelled word. Fucking retarded.

    2. I used to work at Gubmint contractor. As part of my job, I had to download raw data from a database, filter it, format it, run some queries against it, and format it again. All in all, it took up the first 2 hours of my day, so I wrote some VBA scripts to do it all for me. It took it down to about 15 minutes (12 of which was just to run the queries). When word got out, I got requests from several supervisors to automate mundane tasks like that around the office. I ended up saving about 1 man-week of work every month with them.

      I haven’t worked there in a while, but a friend who still does told me that after I left, the government people found out about it and flipped their shit and made them stop using them. They were worried that using scripts to be more efficient would lead to people on the project losing their jobs. They had been using them for almost a year with no reduction in staff, just more efficient staff.

      Your tax dollars at work.

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