Star Wars, Obama Holding Year-End Conference, Virginia Schools Close Over Muslim-Themed Homework: A.M. Links


  • President Obama will give a year-end address Friday afternoon from the White House. After that, he departs for San Bernardino to meet with families of the victims, and then on to Hawaii for his vacation.

  • Police will charge a former friend and neighbor of the San Bernardino terrorists with aiding them. The friend, Enrique Marquez, purchased guns for them and had knowledge of other attacks they had planned but not carried out.
  • A Virginia county has canceled school because parents are mad about a homework assignment with some Islamic writing on it.
  • A Georgia prosecutor is trying to make it illegal for people to buy guns while they are going through divorce.
  • Bernie Sanders is running a sluggish campaign.
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens is finally here.

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  1. Happy Kwanzo, everyone!

    1. Hello.

    2. Hello.

      “Bernie Sanders is running a sluggish campaign.”

      Well, he is a lazy socialist.

    3. It’s Kwanzaa you cis-shitlord patriarch.

      1. Just read the book!

        1. Oh dammit.


      2. It was a joke! *shuffles off*

  2. 126) When I look at my own family, I see how the income inequality debate is such bullshit. Inequality in the US is mostly a result of people making different choices, not impersonal forces. I have relatives who are rich and poor, and everybody’s picked exactly the way they’ve wanted to live.

    I’ve talked about my step-brother before. He and I had all the same lifestyle advantages. But after a year of college he was bored and dropped out. He traveled around Mexico and Latin America for years, paying his way with a series of waiter jobs. He’s poor, but doesn’t regret anything he’s done.

    Another example: My step-mother’s family is from the Arkansas Ozarks. My aunt and uncle moved from there to Phoenix for several years so they could make more money at better jobs. But after about a decade, they decided they like the slower-paced life better, and returned to their tiny Arkansas hometown. My aunt works as a nurse at the county hospital and my uncle hasn’t been able to find a job. I’m sure they’re close the poverty line?but it’s their choice, and they prefer their current life to when they were making more money!

    1. Don’t worry about your relatives, Jatnas. Democratcare covers mental illness.

      1. That’s good to know. I have some candidates in mind for commitment.

        1. Commitment to Excellence!

    2. It’s mostly perception and cues.

      Last night one of my French clients (from Paris) said ‘we have no middle-class’ here. I listened to her and was floored by the comment. I did mention we have one of the biggest middle-classes on the planet here in North America; with the USA having the largest in world FUCKING HISTORY.

      1. Well, the French think we have no class at all.

        But seriously, I wonder if they assume that the middle class requires heavy unionization and ridiculous employment regulations like they have in France. You can’t be middle class. You actually have to work to keep your job.

        1. The way that statement was worded, I’d thought she’d said there was no middle class in France.

          1. The “here”, I think, means where Rufus is. Though the quotes do make it ambiguous.

            Hear that, Rufus? Tighten up your style.

            1. Yeah. My bad. Was having a pistacchio biscotti with espresso while I typed.

              1. While YOU typed? I say, sirrah, what has become of your typing orphan?

              2. Yeah. My bad. Was having a pistacchio biscotti with espresso while I typed.

                You damn wops.

                1. I know. So ridiculous.

        2. Well she did say New York lacks ‘culture.’

          I found that amusing because when I go to Paris it’s not like Parisians are oozing with it. Maybe once long ago but no more.

          I mentioned in the PM links, I interact with quite a few French and Italians (as well as a host of other nationalities) and the thing is they understand their countries are messed up but are not at the point to condemn their restrictive labor codes, welfare and government interventionism is most affairs. Even when I point out certain things they refuse to go there pointing to other things. It’s bizarre and doesn’t bode well for how they will vote in the future. They will just keep to what they know; sorta like how people from Massachusetts bring their brand of defunct liberalism to neighboring states.

          1. Paris is lame. I’ll be happy never to go there again. There are many lovely cities in France to visit.

          2. Well she did say New York lacks ‘culture.’

            That’s a very popular trope from the French. That America lacks culture, as if their 2 week long experience hitting touristy spots in Manhattan is at all indicative of a continent spanning population of 300+ million people.

            Reminds me the time that a white South African (who literally calls herself black) lectured me about how awful America is, how racist we all are, how our food is terrible and how crime is just out of control for a civilized country. How extensive is her experience with the United States you ask? She spent a week at a Christian summer camp in the foothills of central Pennsylvania.

            I reminded her that South Africa is rape and murder capital of world, including many niche crimes of which they lead the world, like baby rape. Also, aside from maybe Nambia, there is no where else in the world with such a high proportion of people who believe in the “if I rape a child it will cure my AIDS” myth. Mind you that this white South African lives in the Netherlands and won’t dare set foot in South Africa since a Boer relative of hers was killed in a farm attack and the fact that she faces a real possibility of being a victim of “corrective rape” since you can tell that she’s a bull dyke from two miles away. She was enraged that I criticized her home country so bluntly and asked me to leave her party. But you know, America is totally the worst and stuff and she’s going to tell me all about it.

          3. To be fair, New York is devoid of culture.

            1. To be fair, New York is devoid of culture.

              That’s not fair. They have a culture, it’s just characterized by rudeness and an overall lack of social skills.

            2. That’s an odd thing to say. There are many things wrong with NYC, and I don’t really like being there myself. But it is a pretty remarkable place, despite the people who run it and many of the people who live there.

      2. To the French, it’s not middle-class unless it’s guaranteed for life.

        1. I guess you had the same thought.

    3. Wait are you suggesting that not everybody wants to go to 6 years of college then get some white collar bullshit cubicle job, and that failing to do so makes you a knuckledragging moronic loser? That goes against everything they taught me in school. Next you’ll be saying that welders make more money then philosophy majors.

      I wonder why the idea that people all have different goals, and values in life seems to be beyond the grasp of liberal elites who consider themselves both open-minded and tolerant? That someone might actually prefer working with their hands instead of looking over spreadsheets in a office?

      1. does NOT make you a knuckledragging moronic loser.

        I thought I proofread this

        1. knuckledragging moronic loser

          Leave Warty out of this.

      2. Hey, I do alright as a philosophy major! I probably make more than at least half of the welders out there.

        The notion that everyone should go to college is absurd, of course. Especially right out of high school. And especially in the US where most college is still more or less set up as classical education for the upper classes.

        1. Before going back to work in the nuc power industry, I taught AP Physics and regular high school physics. My end of the year final was to build a Rube Goldberg machine. And I rotated the goal every year. There were kids who were bored or not great at the theoretical side who absolutely loved this. Kids who wouldn’t necessarily be cut out to be engineers or physicists, but could make kick ass techs.

          1. Our education system is pretty bad at encouraging those kinds of people.

            But stagnant incomes at the lower end can only be the fault of evil capitalists.

            1. Yep. I would much rather write poetry on the beach and not worry about paying bills or providing for my family. Ah the workers paradise!

    4. Incomes are supposed to be unequal. That’s how labor markets work

    5. Inequality in the US is mostly a result of people making different choices, not impersonal forces.

      Citation needed. Srsly.

      You are overlooking the distribution of intelligence. Those with sub-average IQs are unlikely to earn above-average incomes. And remember that the distribution is negatively skewed because of head injuries, etc.

      1. As I have gotten older, I can say that one of the most overrated traits is raw intelligence. Most people have enough intelligence to do the majority of jobs. And do them with a moderate level of competence.
        At the risk of sounding like my grandfather, hard work combined with a bit of self-control is the way to go. I don’t have citations at the moment. But it would take extraordinary evidence to prove this wrong.

        Of course the biggest problem is that half our country has an IQ below that of the median. We HAVE to change this! (Sorry, channeling Bernie Sanders there).

        1. A couple thoughts:

          1) Half the country will always have an IQ below the median. That’s how medians work. As with the wealth/income debate, the most desirable outcome is that the median (or lower quintile or however you wish to slice it) is higher.

          2) Otherwise, I have come to that same conclusion. I think that hard work, honor, and self-discipline will get you much farther in life, provided you are not out-and-out stupid. Looking back at my own life up to this point, I think the fact that I didn’t have to put any effort into high school and only marginally more effort into college was actually a detriment and not a benefit. I also quickly learned that most (though certainly not all) jobs, including the supposedly “skilled” ones like law, can be done by pretty much anyone. A few months’ worth of training on the job is really all that’s necessary.

          3) With all that said, however, I think one thing our society has drifted away from is appreciation for hard work in favor of comfort and convenience. There is no shame in honest work. Full stop. I have drastically more respect for the construction worker, garbage man, barista, etc., who goes out to his job every day, plays by the rules, and earns his wage to support his loved ones than I do for the self-righteous politicos and self-styled wonks or intellegensia that populate our government and media.

          1. the self-righteous politicos and self-styled wonks or intellegensia that populate our government and media.

            Those people have a very important job to do! Which is to provide moral and ideological cover for the state to do it’s core functions, that are of course to bleed society dry of it’s wealth and liberty.

          2. Apparently my sarcasm didn’t come across in my last paragraph. That was the point I was trying to make about the lack of understanding of statistics on the left.

            1. Sorry, I typed that pre-coffee. It’s obvious upon re-reading.

      2. The studies I have seen show a difference of around $6k – $25k between people of below average IQ to those with 130. That is a drop in the bucket when you look at the difference between the various income levels in the country. So while IQ may be a factor, it is not the main cause of US’s large income inequality.

        I agree with Sermon that a lot of Income Quality comes from personal choice. But he overlooks that the people who value your services also have a choice in the matter. A fair society lets people make their own choices. And that includes the choice to value a person’s labor over another. Would a fair society force a young doctor to only get paid as little as a highschool dropout? Would a fair society force others to pay that dropout for as much as a doctor earns?

        The simple fact is that for the past 50 years, the US has been a place of great innovation, great immigration and, yes, a healthy dose of social dysfunction. Our GDP has risen at that time faster than most of the world, and every time a person comes into this country, they are starting from that point. Should a highschool dropout who has mastered a trade be paid the same as an illiterate immigrant who can barely speak english? If not- if you believe that somehow people should be rewarded for the value of the services they provide to others, then you will have inequality. And the US inequality is largely a factor of the dynamism and welcoming inclusiveness of our economy. Nothing else.


      3. My sister in law and her husband were in town and stayed with us for a couple days. She, an avid Bernie supporter, believes that a large segment of the population lacks the intelligence required to earn a “living wage.” She framed the situation as an ethical dilemma, where companies need to be forced to pay more to avoid government subsidizing Walmart workers. In addition she favors import taxes to protect murican jerbs.

        I pointed out:
        1- that the % of head of households earning minimum wage was single digit (and that within a subset of 5% of the working population.)
        2- the economic verity that a worker must produce more than their wages, otherwise the job will necessarily be eliminated.
        3- people in an area devoid of employment opportunities can move
        4- low wage earners have the option of learning trade skills such as welding and HVAC.
        5- government subsidizing low wage earners eliminates incentives to become more productive.
        6- all companies being forced to pay higher wages will look for opportunities to automate and/or reduce services and/or raise prices (hurting all consumers but the poor especially.)
        7- raising import prices shits on the poor by increasing the cost of goods.

        She wasn’t moved, but something clicked for her husband.

        1. 3- people in an area devoid of employment opportunities can move

          Location is a major factor, and what also so often gets overlooked in this idiotic discussion (aside from all of the other points you made) is the illogic in a national minimum wage at all. A $15/hr minimum wage would be absolutely devastating to businesses in the deep South and send the economy into chaos (given the antipathy that Barry and Bernie supporters have toward red states, i suspect this may be a feature, not a bug). People with low-wage jobs in that area are still perfectly capable of doing things like buying a home, taking vacations, and so on.

          Do they not consider what would happen if the cost of labor suddenly doubled?

          1. We will soon find out in upstate NY.

          2. No, they don’t consider. I think those in favor of doubling min wage don’t see the folly of planting an ethical solution into a math problem. That would explain their inability to see unintended consequences .

        2. I find it fascinating you didn’t refer to him as your brother.

          1. Probably because the sister-in-law is his wife’s sister.

            1. Yep. I like them both, actually. Unlike most of my in laws who are team red players without the ability to for a thought beyond current talking points

              1. Team **blue***

        3. #4 We need HVAC people real bad, I can’t find young techs at all, for any price, in So Cal of all places.
          Did I mention it’s a hot dangerous,dirty job? They last about 2 days then quit,

          1. I believe it’s because most youngsters with a work ethic are going to college. Rowe has a damn good point that more people going to vocational school would be a damn good thing

          2. I believe it’s because most youngsters with a work ethic are going to college. Rowe has a damn good point that more people going to vocational school would be a damn good thing

          3. I can’t find young techs at all, for any price

            I hear this lament so often in silicon valley and it’s untrue. It’s absolutely untrue. “We can’t find ANYONE”.

            Untrue. You can immediately get the best and brightest and hardest working programmers in the valley. What you mean is that “We cant find anyone willing to take the job for the price we’re willing to pay”.

            That’s a different issue.

            1. To be clear, I understand you are talking about HVAC in so cal but he principle is the same.

              Offer higher wages you’ll get the techs.

            2. If you substitute the word “willing” with “willing or able” then you are likely closer to reality.

              Many sectors of the economy operate on very slight margins, and some of them like construction require competitive bidding. It is not as simple as just being “willing” to pay everyone the wage the market demands.

              In tech, OTOH, there is usually plenty of cash to splash out for the skilled labor… the management just prefers the narrative that they have to overwork their current workforce because they “can’t” hire anyone else.

  3. Star Wars: The Force Awakens is finally here.

    Who’s winning?

    1. Disney.

    2. Trump

    3. I read somewhere that Star Wars and Obama held a year end conference.

  4. Models must have doctor’s note to prove they are not too thin, France rules

    French lawmakers on Thursday adopted a bill forcing models to provide a doctor’s certificate confirming they are healthy, and magazines to label Photoshopped images as “touched up”.

    The bill stipulates that models must obtain a medical certificate stating that their health, “assessed in particular in terms of body mass index, is compatible with the practise of the [modelling] profession”.

    Breaches of the law will be punishable by up to six months imprisonment and a fine of 75,000 euros (?54,533/$82,000).

    1. So modeling agencies will now have a specific doctor on staff to hand out these notes. Yah! More jobs!

    2. Will they have to prove they don’t have shaved armpits?

    3. Italian modelling companies smile.

    4. Ooooh! Ooooh! I want to be the professional model inspector!

      1. OK Derp-o-Matic 5000, I’m going to fairly compete with you for this job.

        I’m gonna agitate for legislation that nobody whose internet handle contains numbers can hold a position, because PEOPLE ARE PEOPLE and NOT NUMBERS.

        Clearly this is an issue of strong moral principle, and not simply me using the government to restrict others for my own personal gain.

        Also, if you disagree with me you’re saying that people are just numbers and you are taking away their agency, you fucking bigot.

    5. I am too old now to make a major career change.

      But after reading that post I just though what a fun job it would be to sit around all day and make up stupid rules that other people have to follow.

      I thought how funny it would be to make up some really stupid things to make people do and realized that some of the people who do have that job probably think that same way, to wit:.

      In an effort to promote and broaden public mental health on days of heavy menustration all women and period sympathetic transgendered must wear their shirts/blouses inside out when in public.

    1. It seemed difficult for Mr Paul not to acknowledge the reality of his situation, however – a lower-tier candidate labouring on the trail with little media attention and virtually no momentum.

      And that’s the libertarian moment. Except it should be an orphan doing the labouring.

      1. And what should he have done? Are they suggesting that he say “look guys, I know I have no shot in hell of winning, but….”

        I’m starting to believe in the libertarian moment because more and more groups are starting to take notice and attack.

        1. ^This (second paragraph). You don’t see much pushback against the Temperance Party who actually still exist and have a little convention and everything.

          1. Is there an open bar? I don’t go to conventions that don’t have an open bar…

        2. Doesn’t Paul have about the same level of support as the last place Dem whatshisname ?

          Should he and Bernie both just drop out and let Hilliary save her energy.

          Anyone find it strange that once again the Presidents jewelry had to be sent in for repair during Ramadam when Muslims aren’t allowed to wear jewelry ?

          How many times does a wedding ring have to be sent in for repair ? Mine must be of much better quality than his as my wedding ring has never needed repair.

          Just sayin…

          1. Ramadan was in July this year.

          2. [citation needed]
            When people bring up stories like this, all I can think is that they consume too much Team Media.
            Hint : search google for “obama drinking alcohol”
            Clearly he is so extremely observant that he doesn’t wear jewelry during Ramadan (which isn’t actually prohibited by Islamic rules) but *isn’t* so extremely observant that he can’t.. drink alcohol.. which is very unambiguously prohibited at all times? Also he observes Ramadan during times when other Muslims don’t observe Ramadan, in order to throw his critics off the trail! So Tricksy!!!
            #seemslegit ?
            There’s plenty of legitimate reasons to dislike Obama, referring to chain-email sourced, crypto-religiously-intolerant ones like this just makes you look unable to… reason.

      2. No momentum? That’s better than what happened to Scott Walker and Jeb Bush.

  5. Kuwait Airways scraps London-New York flight after dispute over Israeli passengers

    (CNN)Did Kuwait Airways just scrap an entire flight service to avoid carrying Israeli passengers?

    The airline has this week pulled its connection between New York’s JFK airport and London Heathrow after U.S. authorities threatened legal action over alleged discrimination.

    The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) in September warned the Kuwaiti carrier that it had “unlawfully discriminated” against a passenger using an Israeli passport by refusing to sell him a ticket.

    It sent a letter giving the airline 15 days to outline how it would in the future comply with anti-discrimination laws.

    Kuwait Airways response, according to the DOT, appears to have been to drop its London-New York route.

    1. Kuwait, that bastion of Western sentiment that we went to war to save.

    2. Freedom of association!

  6. Progressive fight!

    Veganism is growing. That is a good thing. What isn’t so good is that as the community grows, so too does its disregard for anyone who isn’t an able-bodied, middle-class, white person.

    1. Yes, that’s just why I’ve avoided going vegan.

      1. The reason I avoid veganism is because meat if friggin delicious.

        1. If cows were not meant to be a food source, they would have some legitmate defense mechanism or be faster.

      2. Vegetables are racist.

    2. The true reason for intersectionality. It’s a great way to the most victimissy victim who ever was victimized. The only problem is this chick forgot to wait until they had real power before she started attacking her own.

    3. The girl in the video said ‘it’s one of the best ice-creams around’.

      I’ve had vegan ice-cream. A client of mine who is vegan offered me some.

      It’s TERRIBLE.

      1. There is no such thing as vegan ice cream. The “cream” part should give it away.

        I actually do like some of the plant based “milk” things for certain purposes, but I can’t immagine they’d make a good substitute for ice cream.

        1. I was going to express the same thing but, you know, tedious and all.

          1. I try not to be all “my opinions are the correct ones” on food. But things like turkey bacon, vegan “ice cream” and “mayo” are where I draw the line. Words have meanings, damnit. I do decline to take part in the pizza wars, though.

            My question for vegans: If you are so horrified by the idea of eating animal products, why do you want so many products that attempt to imitate animal products?

            1. Because the animal products taste superior. If the best tasting food in the world was humans who died in great pain and fear, I would try to emulate the flavor with other foods but I would still be horrified by what I was trying to emulate (assuming it was non-consensual of course).

    4. Veganism, like most leftist causes, is mostly about feeling superior to everyone else.

      1. Like driving a Prius?

    5. I have an acquaintance who’s a vegan and a PETA member and has been for 20 years or so. She raised her 3 kids as vegans but, now, all three are meat eaters as adults. She told me recently her son took the family out for a meal and chose a steakhouse as the destination. She was quite depressed about it. This reminded me that most of the kids in evangelical families I knew were frequently the biggest sluts. Rebellion is soooooo fun.

      1. It’s funny how when parents try to mold their kids into a certain type of person, they often end up the exact opposite.

        My mom always told me that guns were evil and that nobody should own one. She even made my dad keep his USMC service a secret from me for the longest time.

        Now I have an arsenal of guns upstairs, one of which is concealed-carried on my hip whenever I go out, and I won’t even think of voting for a politician who doesn’t support the 2A (no ifs, ands, or buts)

    6. “Vegan community”. Why the fuck does every shared interest or characteristic make a “community” now?

      1. Hey Zeb, there are no such things as strangers, just friends in the community you haven’t argued with yet

  7. Boston man offers ‘Living Elf on the Shelf’ service for $100

    BOSTON, Dec. 17 (UPI) — Residents in the Boston area can employ the help of a “Living Elf on the Shelf” to watch over their homes this holiday season.

    A Massachusetts man posted a listing on Craigslist offering to attend Holiday parties dressed as an Elf on the Shelf and “stare emptily at your guests” for $100 an hour.

    “I specialize in holiday themed events, either yours or an un-expecting friend’s, but I also offer contracted private investigation and babysitting services,” the man who identified himself only as “whatever you want my name to be” wrote.

    1. I think this is good midgets haven’t had any real great employment choices since dwarf tossing went by the wayside.

      1. It is still a popular appetizer on my home world

        1. “Plate of Tossed Dwarf, sir?”

        2. Dwarf Tossed Salad? Or is that a different thing?

          1. More like jalopeno poppers

          2. Dwarf Tossed Salad?

            Definitely a rule 34 thing.

      2. They’re really chic in Hollywood though, what with GoT and all.

        1. I haven’t seen many who can act as well as Peter Dinklage, though.

          1. What about the Lollipop Guild? Shakespearean I say.

            1. I think they’re dead.

    2. Interesting. I doubt he’ll get much work since I heard of another guy from Mass. hat has binders full of women on the shelf.

    3. But I can put the YouTube video of Nick Offerman on the TV for free… (He sits next to a fireplace drinking scotch for 45 minutes.)

  8. Star Wars: The Force Awakens is finally here.

    Star Whats?. The Force Awhatkens?

    1. The Force Anakins

      1. NOOOOOOOOO!!

  9. Disney World and Universal Studios Add Metal Detectors to Entrances

    Disney World, SeaWorld and Universal Orlando all boosted their security on Thursday following recent mass shootings by adding metal detectors at their entrances.

    Disney World is taking steps beyond the added detectors as well, such as discontinuing toy gun sales in all of its parks and barring anyone 14 and older from wearing a costume, the Orlando Sentinel reports. The parks have also increased the security presence on the ground.

    “We continually review our comprehensive approach to security and are implementing additional security measures, as appropriate,” Disney said in a statement.

    1. The terrorists really have won.

    2. Pirates of the Caribbean store without pistols? A travesty, I say!

    3. How do you know who is 14? They aren’t going to have driver’s licenses.

  10. Jailed Man Charged With Bigamy After 2 Wives Pay Him A Visit

    HENRICO, Va. (AP) ? A Virginia man will be spending more time behind bars after his second and third wives showed up to visit him in jail at the same time.

    The Richmond Times-Dispatch ( ) reports that Frank E. Blake Jr.’s visitors led investigators to discover that Blake hadn’t divorced his second wife before he married his third wife. Authorities also say Blakemarried his second wife before his divorce from his first wife was finalized. It’s unclear why Blake was initially in jail.

    Blake pleaded no contest Tuesday to a charge of bigamy, stemming from the overlap between the end of his first marriage and the start of his second. He was sentenced to 1.5 years imprisonment, with 3.5 years suspended.

    1. will be spending more time behind bars after his second and third wives showed up to visit him in jail at the same time.

      The inmate was overheard pleading to guards ‘Please, please get me back to my cell!’

    2. Reminds me of the story of former Yankee Mickey Rivers, who was half-Latino, half-black. He had a wife in New Jersey during the season. During the off-season he had another wife in Miami, where he was married under the name Miguel Rivera. Things were going pretty well for him until his Miami wife decided to surprise him with a visit. Apparently it ended with fisticuffs between the two wives in the parking lot of Yankees stadium.

      1. I grew up in the days of the Bronx Zoo. people think about the “corporate Yankees”, now but they forget what it was like the first few years when Steinbrenner was in charge.

        1. And what a shock the Bronx Zoo was after 50 years of the “corporate Yankees”.

    3. Capt. Spaulding: [to Mrs. Rittenhouse and Mrs. Whitehead] Let’s get married.

      Mrs. Whitehead: All of us?

      Capt. Spaulding: All of us.

      Mrs. Whitehead: Why, that’s bigamy.

      Capt. Spaulding: Yes, and it’s big of me too.

  11. Bernie Sanders is running a sluggish campaign.

    But you repeat yourself?

  12. This might have already been posted – if so, soz:

    Colorado College Suspends Student For 6 Months Over Yik Yak Post

    1. I’m not familiar with the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) – may be sending a donation…

      1. Those freedom-loving extremist?
        They’re definitely one of the Good Guys.

      2. Yeah, what Princess said. They have an awesome record.

      3. I’m having trouble wrapping my mind around the thought that RA Heinlein hasn’t heard of Foundation.

  13. Fla. Judge Who Threatened To Fight, Throw Rock At Lawyer Removed From Bench

    Brevard County Circuit Judge John Murphy got into an argument last year with now-former assistant public defender Andrew Weinstock over whether a defendant could have a speedy trial. The judge at one point said, “If you want to fight, let’s go out back.” The two men left the courtroom and Murphy was accused of hitting the man. He denied striking Weinstock.

    The justices said Thursday that Murphy’s actions eroded public faith in the courts. They also rejected a judicial review commission’s recommendation that Murphy only be suspended for four months and fined $50,000.

    “The egregious conduct demonstrates his present unfitness to remain in office,” the justices said. “Judge Murphy’s grievous misconduct became a national spectacle and an embarrassment to Florida’s judicial system.”

    1. “…embarrassment to Florida’s judicial system.”

      Not possible.

    2. “an embarrassment to Florida’s judicial system”

      Whoa…Florida Judge reaches a high bar!

    3. “became a national spectacle and an embarrassment to Florida’s judicial system.”

      We have done better than this

    4. an embarrassment to Florida’s judicial system.

      Yeah, that’s not likely.

    5. they should come to seattle. We have personal combat laws.

    6. Florida Man loses another job.

  14. Bernie Sanders campaign accesses Hillary Clinton data, gets suspended from DNC voter files

    Washington (CNN)The Democratic National Committee has suspended Sen. Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign’s access to the DNC voter database after the campaign allegedly took advantage of a software error to access Hillary Clinton’s confidential voter information.

    The suspension is a setback for the Vermont senator — who fired the staffer involved — because the database is a goldmine of information about voters nationwide. Campaigns usually use that data to plot their next moves.

    TW: Autoplay video

    1. So I guess she should have wiped her hard drive with more than a cloth

  15. A Virginia county has canceled school because parents are mad about a homework assignment with some Islamic writing on it.

    Now kids will be learning arabic to try to generate more vacation days. Way to go parents.

    1. But the phrase was “There is no God but Allah”. Can you imagine the outcry if kids were being told to write the Lords Prayer? Hell if they were told to write the Shema, a Muslim kid probably would have cut the teacher’s head off.

      1. Can you imagine the outcry if they were told to say we are “one nation under God”?

        1. It doesn’t say WHICH god!

          I elided that line every time we stood for the pledge.

          1. There is only one God.

            HAIL ODIN!!!!

            1. THIS!!

              1. Although that shouldn’t be interpreted to ignore Thor, Tyr, Freyr and Freya, Frigg, Sif, Bragi, et al.

                1. Don’t forget Lofn.

                2. Loki IS listening

          2. LOL, you said the rest of it?

            1. I was a meek kid, Nikki. Any attention I drew to myself was unwanted attention.

              And yeah, I didn’t have too much of a problem with the rest of the pledge, as general as it is. My main complaint growing up is that no effort was given to explaining just what we were pledging and why. Which just made the whole exercise something of a mockery.

        2. I am pretty sure a whole bunch of Atheists are pissed about that. Where the fuck are the atheists who spend every Christmas suing over nativity scenes and anyone in a public school having a Christmas pageant right now? I am pretty sure making kids write “there is no God but Allah” is inserting religion into the public schools.

          1. You bet a whole bunch of atheists are pissed about that, and normally you consider them whiny bitches for it.

            1. Yes I do. And since I never hear a peep from Atheists when Islam is inserted into public schools, I consider them to be even bigger whinny bitches now.

              They are just whinny bitch Progs fighting the culture war. They don’t have a problem with religion in schools. They just want to further leftist politics.

              1. That and they don’t have to worry about Christians cutting their heads off.

              2. Look the Atheist activist groups are like the gay activist groups. Not every gay is a progressive leftist dickhead, but the groups that claim to represent their interests are. Same with the Atheists, same with every so called victim group.

              3. Yes I do. And since I never hear a peep from Atheists when Islam is inserted into public schools, I consider them to be even bigger whinny bitches now.

                Oh, please. Why don’t you consider all the Christians complaining about this whiny bitches? After all, are they harmed, or just offended?

                That and they don’t have to worry about Christians cutting their heads off.

                Christians don’t have to worry about Muslims cutting their heads off for doing this exercise in class either.

                1. “Christians don’t have to worry about Muslims cutting their heads off for doing this exercise in class either.”


                  1. (American) Christians (presumably, since we’re discussing a county in Virginia) don’t have to worry about execution by Muslim.

                    1. It’s not like they drew a cartoon.

                    2. Like those 14 Americans did not have to worry about that, until they were.

                    3. * in San Bernadino did not have to worry

                2. Oh, please. Why don’t you consider all the Christians complaining about this whiny bitches? After all, are they harmed, or just offended?

                  Where did I say they were not? And unlike atheists they are at least complain about something that happened where they live. Atheists spend their time bitching about things that happen in places they will never go. Who is the bigger whinny bitch there.

                  Christians don’t have to worry about Muslims cutting their heads off for doing this exercise in class either.

                  Sure, but they have to worry about it for a lot of other reasons. Muslims suck much more than any Christian you have ever met Nikki. If you don’t believe me, go live in a majority Muslim country sometime.

                  1. Muslims suck much more than any Christian you have ever met Nikki. If you don’t believe me, go live in a majority Muslim country sometime.

                    John, what the fuck? Seriously.

                    You are one of the biggest collectivists around when it has anything even remotely to do with non-Christians.

                    1. The facts are what they are Timon. I have spent over a year of my life in the Middle East. And I can tell you right now I would never want to live in any of those countries or want any of the people who live there, sans maybe the Kurds to have any influence at all in any society I live in.

                      I am not talking about the crazy ones who want to blow themselves up. I am talking about the nice reasonable ones. The nice ones who believe Muslims should be above everyone else, women should always be second class citizens, gays should be stoned to death and Jews are no better than animals. Your typical Egyptian, Kuwaiti or Iraqi Muslim believes all of those things. Do you think those countries suck so badly and are so oppressive by accident?

                    2. I’ve spent over a year (probably close to two) in the Middle East as well.

                      I come away with a completely different set of lessons about the character of most of them. I am not saying it’s anything close to perfect, but I don’t say absurdities like:

                      Muslims suck much more than any Christian you have ever met.

                      There are loads of Christians who are awful, peevish assholes. A large percentage of the Muslims I have had contact with are far, far better than a decent portion of those Christians. Some are better “Christians” than a lot of actual Christians, in that they are decent to strangers and far more hospitable and, yes, tolerant of people of faith not their own.

                    3. Timon you say that yet no majority Christian country is even a third as bad as any of the majority Muslim countries. And if you think those places are anywhere you would ever want to live, you were not paying attention. Seriously, go try and be gay or anything but a Muslim in Kuwait. None of those Gulf states have any civil rights or freedom of religion or conscience as we know them. And the only reason they are not worse than they are is because they are monarchies and the people who live there can’t vote and make it worse.

                      Islamic countries are nearly universally backwards and oppressive by any reasonable standard.

                    4. John: what part of “absurd collectivization” are you not understanding about how you constantly state things here?

                      You have the world’s biggest rhetorical Berzerker mode when it comes to shit like this, and in addition, you completely refuse to actually read anything anyone says when it questions your collectivism. You just double-down and move the goalposts, happily narrowing or widening the scope of the discussion at will to fit whatever narrative you stupidly puked forth in the first place.

                      It’s frustrating as hell because on many, many, many other topics, you provide a pretty decent reasoned perspective that contributes to this place.

                    5. Timon,

                      Can you argue a single fact? All you do is call me “collectivist” as if it is impossible to ever make any generalized conclusions about a religion or ideology. Those countries are horrible, backward and oppressive and you know it. And you have presented no facts or evidence that they are not. All you do is claim ‘well not everyone there bad”. Well no shit. But what difference does it make? The people there who do not hold backward shitty views hold them in spite of being Muslim not because of being so.

                    6. John, this is the statement at issue, uttered by you, in your ridiculously absolutist panache:

                      Muslims suck much more than any Christian you have ever met.

                      Can you acknowledge that you have a couple of tremendous blind spots and fly into a barely controlled rage when anyone questions you on it?

                      By the by, I’d invite you to ask questions of the female engineers I’ve worked with – who would acknowledge frustrations with their fellow countrymen and government on many of the relevant issues – if they think you’re being just a bit of a dickhead with absolutely no nuance on this. Except they’d probably not appreciate me putting them in touch with a jackass like yourself.

                3. After all, are they harmed, or just offended?

                  Regardless of how you perceive the legitimacy of their beliefs, asking religious people to commit apostasy is in poor taste, if nothing else. It’d be like making you use gender-specific pronouns, or something.

                  Christians don’t have to worry about Muslims cutting their heads off for doing this exercise in class either.

                  The school administrators would probably be wise to watch their backs if they were forcing Muslim students to write the 13 Principles of Judaism or John 3:16 though, which I think was more the point.

                4. Say what?

                5. Oh, please. Why don’t you consider all the Christians complaining about this whiny bitches?

                  Because they’re right?

                  Because if it WERE Christians doing this exact same thing, when the inevitable atheist whining about separation of church and state started nearly everyone who comments here–with the possible exceptions of Eddie and John–would be sticking it to the Christians.

                  And it sounds–if you really poke into this–like the Christians and other parents are making that exact point.

                  If the school was doing something that seemed to promote Christianity, people would be up in arms–why aren’t those people ever up in arms when schools do something that seems to promote Islam?

            2. Although a whole bunch of atheists are subordinating the whole atheism thing to the whole social justice thing, and likely see adding “inshahallah” to the pledge as a nod to balancing it out.

              1. I meant to say to the curriculum as a nod to balancing out the pledge.

        3. Can you imagine the outcry if they were told to say we are “one nation under God”?

          Which, of course, is not mandatory, unlike classroom assignments, and cannot be made mandatory, as supported by 6 decades of legal precedent.

          1. But they’re still told to say it every morning, and no teacher I ever had said, “By the way, we can’t make you say this.”

            Which do you think more kids participate in, the pledge every morning or regular homework?

            1. Which do you think more kids participate in, the pledge every morning or regular homework?

              It’s completely irrelevant. It’s illegal to force kids to recite the pledge or to punish them for failing to do so. That kids have the option to be slackers does not justify making religious students recite another religion’s articles of faith or risk failing an assignment.

              1. Meh. I looked over the homework, and it wasn’t demanding that anyone express any belief. It just requested that the student copy a piece of calligraphy to help understand the work involved in arabic artistic calligraphy.

                In school I was required to read the bible, ancient greek mythology, several Hindu scriptures as well as several other eastern religious documents. It was necessary for my literature class so that you could understand a bunch of the analogies in more contemporary works (JB, etc).

                So yes, Christians are being whiny bitches here. Your religion doesn’t mean you can’t be asked to perform assignments that analyze other religions, including some of the more noteworthy aspects of that religion.

                (That said, a teacher could have achieved the same results with a different islamic phrase, though likely people would have freaked out anyways.)

                1. Bingo.

                  Also, as I understand it, she was taking it directly from mandated curriculum, so it’s doubtful she would have been able to come up with a suitable alternative on short notice.

                2. “So yes, Christians are being whiny bitches here” That is your opinion.

                  No they are not is my opinion. That particular statement is considered by Muslims to be all that is needed to convert to Islam. To campare apples to apples when you say you had to read parts of the Bible, were you made to write out the phrase ” I accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior” ? Probably not.

                  A Christian parent has every right to stop a school from making their kids write out that statement as an atheist would if their kid was told to write out the Christian phrase above or have points taken off their score.

                  While the teacher may or may not have known the significance of that statement whomever wrote or approved that in the lesson plan should have paid closer attention to what they were doing and left a religious statement out of it in the first place.

              2. Kids also can’t be legally compelled to do an assignment, so what are we talking about?

      2. Mr. Odinson ? a rather important point that Reason omitted. Surprise ? surprise.

        I found this imagined conversation rather amusing:

        Us: You shouldn’t make kids write “Allah is god,” the same as I assume you would never make them write “Jesus is Lord.”

        Them: But this was in Arabic. They didn’t know what they were writing.

        Us: They found out pretty quick. Would you make Muslim kids write “Jesus is Lord”–

        Them: But we didn’t tell them what they were writing!

        Us: You didn’t let me finish: Would you make Muslim kids write “Jesus is Lord” in Latin? “Dominum Iesum?” How’s that hit you? Does that touch you someplace special?

        Them: …

        Us: Or how about in Ancient Greek? Or in Aramaic? Or even — God forbid — Hebrew?

        Them: That’s different.

        Us: In what way?

        Them: …

        Us: The real difference is that you feel that you may and should pummel Christian kids into being “open minded” about faiths not their own, but you’d be very protective of Muslim kids’ religions autonomy wouldn’t you?

        Them: —

        Us: Are you going to answer?

        Them: We’re shutting down the school. The Tone of this discussion just proves how important it is to be open to learning about Islam.

        Us: This sure seems like an attempt to claim victim status when you’re the one crossing lines.
        Them: Help! Help! I’m being microaggressed!

        1. You are spot on. It seems that the left has more hatred for Christianity, which went through its violent periods, then it does for Islam which has yet to reform (or evolve, or whatever term one wants to use). And yet there are NO organized forces of Christianity urging their followers to commit violence in the name of their religion.

          BTW: as you probably can tell from my screen name, I am NOT a Christian, and have some very strong feelings about aspects of it. But I can also see reality.

          1. I just assumed you were a heavy metal fan. Folk metal perhaps?

            1. I love metal. Although folk metal isn’t really my favorite. Melodic metal, death metal like Amon Amarth, and metalcore is more my style. And classic heavy metal like Iron Maiden (I didn’t fall in love with their new album at first, but it is really growing on me).

              1. *nods sagely*

          2. As is often noted here, Christianity gets a lot of pushback here (USA) because we are a majority-Christian nation. In India the Hindus get the majority of the pushback from their atheists for the same reason.

            1. And I sometimes get why the more evangelical Athiests spend so more energy against Christianity here. But when there are OBVIOUS examples of this shit with Islam, they are nowhere to be found. Abd because the majority of these Athiests tend to be leftist, I think that informs their atheism. Obviously folks like Penn Gilette, and even Sam Harris now for awhile are exceptions.

              1. Even Gillette has admitted that he will not criticize Islam the way he does Christianity because he is afraid what might happen to him. Yet, the Hit and Run Atheists all claim that Christianity is just as much of a threat to their freedom as Islam. Really?

            2. In Pakistan the atheists get the heads chopped off.

          3. Islam had its reform. Both reforms attempted to get back to the doctrine. The problem is Islamic doctrine says different things than Christian. No reform will make it say the opposite.

        2. I see a different conversation:

          School: This was an assignment asking kids to try and recreate a well known form of Islamic art.

          Parent: But it was a religious expression!

          School: Yeah, most historical art deals with religious themes. That happens.

          Parent: But as a Christian you are forcing my child to declare something against his religion.

          School: No one is asking them to declare anything. They are copying a piece of art. Next year your kids are going to be analyzing Ancient Greek Mythology. They will be doing projects about Zeus and other religious symbols.

          Parent: But this is a current religion, not some ancient myth that no one believes in any more.

          School: So you don’t believe in Islam and you don’t believe in the Greek Pantheon, but you object to the former just because OTHER people believe in it today?

          Parent: …

          School: Look, in highschool your kid will be reading the bible and will be asked to quote from it as a part of their literary history classes. We haven’t had any of you complain about “Religious Expression”- well except for those whiny bitches the atheists. Why no complaint then?

          Parent: This is different. They are being tricked into writing something they don’t believe. You’d never expect some kid to write a Christian exhortation in latin!

          School: Actually, kids in our Latin classes often translate old religious-

          Parent: Look, you just don’t get it! I’m outa here!

          School: What a jerk. I feel unsafe and need a vacation. CLOSE SCHOOL!

          1. School: This was an assignment asking kids to try and recreate a well known form of Islamic art.

            Parent; No. It wasn’t. Calligraphy predates Islam. By at least two centuries–and maybe by as much 6. It is not an ‘Islamic art’. How can our children learn anything if the mandated lessons their teachers give are so wrong?

            1. Split that hair a little more finely.

              Classical Arabic calligraphy is as much Islamic art as any other form of calligraphy is ‘whatever’-ic/ish/ese art.

      3. Wait, doesn’t that mean they were halfway toward tricking the kids into converting?

        1. I think that says a lot about the supersitious nature of people who believe that casually saying or writing a phrase has magical properties. By that metric I’m totally Jewish because I’ve said shabbos prayers any number of times when around the table with Jews on a Friday night.

          1. I don’t think it implies that at all. I would not be pleased to write “Obama is the greatest president ever” even though I know it wouldn’t make it true. I honestly can’t see how you connected this objection to superstition at all.

            1. I honestly can’t see how you connected this objection to superstition at all.

              Then I’m sorry for you.

              1. One more try: As an atheist it doesn’t freak me out to participate in a food-blessing spell, aka “saying grace,” because I’m not superstitious. I don’t think those words have any power or meaning other than as cultural traditions. But for the superstitious (aka religious) who do believe that those spells and incantations have power they freak the hell out because they believe that by copying some writing that it will make their god angry, or condemn little Billy’s soul to fiery hell for all eternity.

                1. So your example is to recite some shit you made up in your head as proof that people are superstitiously freaked out? I don’t know anyone who likes being forced to do things they don’t want to do or get punished. No mysticism is required to find it objectionable. Some might say it’s a solid basis for a certain Liberty leaning political movement. If you happen to not mind it, then you are truly unique among earthlings.

                  1. Kids are forced to do shit they don’t want to ALL THE FUCKING TIME. It’s called school. That often includes writing essays that defend things they don’t necessarily believe in, and reading shit that they find objectionable. I don’t see much difference between offended Christians and some SJW freaking out because she had to read How to Kill a Mockingbird.

    2. Do they get to cancel math class too? Because a lot of them there numbers look Arabic to me.

      1. The Phoenicians, who created them, might disagree.

  16. This Day in History

    1737 – Violin maker Antonio Stradivari died in Cremona, Italy.

    1787 – New Jersey became the third state to ratify the U.S. Constitution.

    1865 – Slavery was abolished with the ratification of the 13th Amendment to the Constitution.

    1892 – Tchaikovsky’s “The Nutcracker Suite” premiered at St. Petersburg’s Maryinksy Theatre.

    1944 – The Supreme Court upheld the wartime internment of Japanese-Americans.

    1956 – Japan was admitted to the United Nations.

    1957 – The Shippingport Atomic Power Station in Pennsylvania became the first civilian nuclear facility to generate electricity in the United States.

    1969 – The British Parliament abolished the death penalty for murder.

    2000 – George W. Bush received 271 votes in the delayed Electoral College balloting.

    1. #2, New Jersey would never agree to a document which could be construed to give individuals rights.

      1. New Jersey hasn’t always been a blue state.

        1. Wait, you mean to tell me that the Democratic Party hasn’t been a force of TEH PROGRESS! in this country since before recorded time?!?

      2. Wrong, my friend. This was the pre-BOR version.

        I’m going with #6. IIRC, Japan joined the UN in 1954, shortly after the first Godzilla attack.

        1. Actually, it’s #9. George Bush was SELECTED, not ELECTED!!!!


  17. DNC: Sanders campaign improperly accessed Clinton voter data

    Officials with the Democratic National Committee have accused the presidential campaign of Sen. Bernie Sanders of improperly accessing confidential voter information gathered by the rival campaign of Hillary Clinton, according to several party officials.

    Jeff Weaver, the Vermont senator’s campaign manager, acknowledged that a low-level staffer had viewed the information but blamed a software vendor hired by the DNC for a glitch that allowed access. Weaver said one Sanders staffer was fired over the incident.

    The discovery sparked alarm at the DNC, which promptly shut off the Sanders campaign’s access to the strategically crucial list of likely Democratic voters.

    1. And shit like this is why you keep you stuff on a private server.


      1. A low-level staffer did that? Really inspires a great deal of confidence in Hillbot’s data-security capabilities, doesn’t it?

  18. A Georgia prosecutor is trying to make it illegal for people to buy guns while they are going through divorce.

    And removing “fear for my safety” from the list of legally acceptable reasons to get divorced.

    1. They should probably make it easier, not harder.

    2. Seriously, what if a woman is legitimately afraid of her husband while going through the divorce – in fact, MAYBE THAT IS WHY SHE IS DIVORCING HIM???

      Does she not have the right to some form of protection?

      Yes, she does. A natural right. And I am amazed this asshole is from Georgia. What has happened to my former state?!?!

      1. What if the husband is afraid of his wife ? Asking for a friend

        1. “Gonna buy a tank
          And an aeroplane
          When she catches up with me
          Won’t be no time to explain
          She thinks I’ve been with another woman
          And that’s enough to send her half insane”

  19. Don’t stick it in crazy?

    Woman jailed for 9 years after burning man’s genitals with hot iron while they had sex

    A woman has been jailed for nine years after burning a man’s genitals with an iron while they had sex.

    Kenya Alozie, from Nigeria, also attacked the man with a broken bottle during the assault in May, according to Mirror Online.

    British police described the 31-year-old’s attack as “calculated and pre-planned.”

    “She ensured she had a broken bottle to hand and a hot iron to strike the victim and seriously harm him,” said Detective Constable Duncan Clark from Greenwich Police.

    1. I mean, some guys are into that kind of thing.

    2. Just look at that face. She ain’t regretting what she did.

    3. “She ensured she had a broken bottle to hand and a hot iron to strike the victim and seriously harm him,”‘

      Guy doesn’t seem very observant? I’m pretty sure I’d notice if my wife had a broken bottle and hot iron by the bed.

      1. I assume these are normal decorations and accessories in a double-wide

    4. It doesn’t matter how hot she is. She is drinking some guy, somewhere batshit!

      1. *driving*. But drinking works too.

        My kingdom for an edit button.

      2. I heard this version.

        Remember guys, no matter how good looking she is, some guy, some where, is tired of her shit.

  20. Women at risk from violent exes get something to protect themselves. Is it:

    a) a gun
    b) frickin’ laser beams
    c) personal safety cards, alarm watches and CCTV cameras that enable women to live-stream confrontations with violent partners to emergency services

    And the answer is…

    1. So basically, the same as calling 911, only somebody can actually watch you get the shit beat out of you while you wait half an hour for the cops to arrive?

    2. I have weird cases from time to time and I hate it when one side gets a PPO on the other. And (if I’m representing the side who wanted to get the PPO) I always point out that the PPO can be violated, it just shows that you did get a PPO and that a judge agreed with you that there was probably some danger.

      1. Soooo, the woman can die happy? Knowing she was right?

        WIN – WIN!!!

  21. Why is everything fucking common-sense?

    White House calls for ‘common sense steps’ to help Puerto Rico

    The White House called on Thursday for “common sense steps” to help Puerto Rico claw out of its fiscal crisis as it welcomed a commitment by the leader of the U.S. House of Representatives to consider legislation to help the debt-strapped commonwealth.

    “We certainly are gratified that the speaker has committed to bringing up legislation early in the new year to give Puerto Rico access to an orderly restructuring regime,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters.

    House Speaker Paul Ryan said on Wednesday he had instructed committees to work with Puerto Rico’s government to come up with a solution to the island’s financial woes, calling for a plan to be crafted by the end of March.

    1. If you have to say something is “common sense” when proposing it, you know fully well it’s anything but.

      1. ^This

      2. Yeah sure, says the guy who is AGAINST common sense perpetual motion machine research.

        1. The First and Second Laws of Thermodynamics are just tools of the patriarchy!

    2. “Common” doesn’t mean much more than “popular”. “Sense” can simply be intuition or raw emotion, as opposed to a conclusion based on understanding of the subject. So “Common sense” is interchangeable with “Popular emotion”, which is great for elected politicians. Popular means that they get elected and emotion means that they don’t have to spend time learning about what they’re regulating and/or subsidizing.

    3. One might also surmise that if it were *truly* “common sense” it would have been enacted without objection long ago.

      1. I was visiting there earlier this month. The nicest, largest buildings are all government buildings. They’re currently expanding or adding more marble to what I assumed was the capital building. The police cars are all new model fords. The could do better with just buying used ones from Florida cops. It was sad to see these glamorous buildings across the street from squalor. There is an abandoned building across the street from this marble and granite building. I could only think of the corruption that’s involved when we give money to dictators in the third world. They buy houses and guns, the people get fucked. Tl;Dr fuck you cut spending. Or at least give it to the people.

        1. something something government deficit spending multiplier effect something something.

    4. Throwing money at the problem is the common sense solution, right?

    5. So why didn’t the gov support McCain’s bill to abolish the Jones Act? That’s pretty much as common sense as it gets.

    6. So why didn’t the gov support McCain’s bill to abolish the Jones Act? That’s pretty much as common sense as it gets.

    7. So why didn’t the gov support McCain’s bill to abolish the Jones Act? That’s pretty much as common sense as it gets.

  22. Pie chart breaks down every Shakespeare death. And jolly colourful it is too

    1. Not any gun deaths. Obviously gun control was much more effective in Shakespeare’s day. Also, death by lack of sleep? I don’t think I remember that play.

  23. Obama’s 2016: Clinton, Trump and a clock
    In his final year, president will push for justice reform, trade deals, climate action ? and a Democratic successor.

    On Friday, Obama will use his annual year-end press conference to take a victory lap after what he and his aides gloat was an expectation-defying 2015, but also lay the groundwork for an eighth year that they insist will be different from any other.

    Acknowledging privately that he flubbed his initial response to the Paris attacks, Obama’s are hoping to add more theater to his counterterrorism response. The actual strategy isn’t changing much. But with White House aides saying they feel like Americans are more worried about the immediate threat of terrorism in the wake of Paris and San Bernadino than at any point since 9/11, there will be more events like Obama’s visits to the Pentagon and the National Counterterrorism Center this week ? meetings that would likely be happening anyway, but deliberately pushed into public view, with the president making sure to speak more passionately himself.

    And long before Obama officially starts campaigning for Clinton, he’ll be doing more speeches like his recent ones about immigration: rebutting without directly mentioning whatever flares up from Trump or the other Republicans

  24. When did “elf on the shelf” become a thing, who is to blame for it becoming a thing, and where can I find this person so I can fight them?

    1. I don’t but it creeps me the hell out. I already hate Christmas so this is just piling on.

  25. Cruz rips student protesters at alma mater

    Sen. Ted Cruz blasted the “pampered teenagers” at universities he said have an obsession with political correctness, singling out protesters at his alma mater of Princeton University who want to remove tributes to former president Woodrow Wilson for being a racist.

    “There are many on the left who I think are weakening this country,” Cruz said on comedian Adam Carolla’s podcast in a recording posted Thursday.

    “So you talked about, for example, universities. You see at universities, these essentially pampered teenagers, many of them from very wealthy homes, who complain that they don’t want to hear anything that they disagree with, that it is a micro-aggression. And it is the most bizarre and anti-academic notion you can have.”

    1. I would like to remove tributes to Woodrow Wilson because he is directly responsible for tens of thousands of needless deaths and indirectly responsible for the rise of the Nazis and that whole mess. His decision to involve the US in the WWI was the catalyst for both of those things.

      Also his hand in the creation of the Federal Reserve System and probably a dozen more things that should rightly be considered crimes against justice and human liberty. Fuck that guy.

      But his racism? Who gives a fuck? If that’s the standard then every one of these protesters should head down to the cemetery with a sledgehammer and obliterate the head stones of their grand parents while they’re at it.

  26. In Defense of Micro-Apartments

    Carmel Place is a nine-story development that includes 55 units. Of those, 33 units are designated market-rate; eight of the 22 units slotted for affordable housing are reserved for very-low-income renters.

    Sounds good, right? Moreover, as Co.Design notes, the building’s designer, nArchitects, didn’t skimp on the details. These prefabricated units come with hardwood floors, storage lofts, Juliet balconies, the works?everything you’d expect from an upscale housing development in Manhattan.

    So what’s all the fuss? That last detail?the average unit size?was hard fought. Under former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the city waived a zoning rule that required apartments to be no less than 400 square feet in size. The building is the winning design for adAPT NYC, a program to build a pilot for prefabricated micro-housing in New York. Units in Carmel Place range from roughly 250 to 350 square feet, and the market-rate ones will rent for up to $3,000 per month.

    1. Holy shit, 3K? I’m never moving to New York.

      1. You just need a few room mates to split that 350 Sqft apartment.

      2. If the ‘market’ rent didn’t have to also subsidize the ‘affordable’ units, it wouldn’t be that high.

      3. Meh, in a trendy part of Manhattan.

        I have like triple that space and pay way less in Brooklyn. Plus I am subsidizing the old people like WTF mentions below.

    2. $3000? Holy crap. Right off the bat you need to earn 36k minimum.

      1. No, you need to NET 36k minimum

        1. Shit. Yes!

      2. The rule of thumb I learned is that housing should be no more than 1/4 your gross income. That means you must make 12k/month to actually afford this.

      3. And to be considered, you probably need to make 40x the rent, so $120,000 a year before they’ll look at your application.

        1. That’s basically “middle class” for Manhattan. Believe me there is no shortage of people filling up apartments at that rate.

    3. My favorite is the “sounds good, right?” after all she’s told you is that if you pay a market rent, you’ll be subsidizing almost half of the other units in the building. Yeah, that sounds fucking killer!

      1. Pro tip: Those “low income units” don’t actually exist. Perhaps in the first rental cycle when the building is brand new and first certified for occupancy, the City can place low-income renters in those units. Those renters are quickly cycled out (paid off and relocated) of those units. Within the first 12 months, all of thise units will rent at market rates.

  27. Police will charge a former friend and neighbor of the San Bernardino terrorists with aiding them. The friend, Enrique Marquez, purchased guns for them and had knowledge of other attacks they had planned but not carried out.

    What a putz. Horatio Sanz in a Niqab, a dude who flew 4000 miles to pick her up as a mail-order bride, and this putz. What we need is common sense goober control.

  28. Vikings 4 trailer: Ragnar gets a cool wound, and Lagertha might be moving from psychological to physical castration

    1. Lagertha is awesome. Katherine Wynnick might be the sexiest woman on TV. If only Vikings were on HBO, the world would be a better place.

      1. *Katheryn Winnick*

        Get it together.

        1. You know who I mean.

          1. She is a goddess and I will not have you disrespecting her with your lazy spelling.

            1. John’s lazy spelling is almost the only reason to come to Hit’n’Run, Crusty.

      2. She ‘s like Scarlett Johannsen if she had a personality.

        1. That is a good way to put it. Johannsen is beautiful but she is just annoying. Winnick is a hundred times sexier, even though she is a few years older and doesn’t have the rack Johannsen does.

    2. Historicity not withstanding, I love the show. (In all fairness, there was a lot going on in the early to mid ninth century that we plain don’t know much about, other than a few events (793 Lindisfarne, and Kings like Egbert and Aella).
      I also love Athelstan because I personall have felt the struggle inside between 2 different faiths.

      1. ECBERT!!

        1. actually both ECKbert and Egbert, signed

      2. They make a good stab at getting many of the details correct, while eliding some of the major stuff. When they first encounter the Britons they are indeed speaking Anglo-Saxon aka Old English.

  29. I know people who work in the Secret Service and there is an interesting fact they have told me about Presidential vacations. Previous Presidents of both parties have always taken their Christmas vacations starting the day after Christmas and spent Christmas Eve and Christmas Day in the White House. The reason for that is that they wanted the Secret Service and White House staff who travel with the President to be able to spend Christmas at home.

    Obama as you will note in one of the PM links is leaving on his Christmas vacation well before Christmas and will be in Hawaii the entire week of Christmas meaning his entire security detail will be both on duty (they don’t need as many agents if the President is at the White House) and away from home the week of Christmas. He has done that every year he has been President.

    Never forget that more than anything and regardless of what you think of his politics Obama is a selfish asshole who doesn’t give a flying fuck about anyone but himself. If the media made any attempt to truthfully report what kind of a human being Obama is, the country would have a very low opinion of him.

    1. I’m just waiting for his protection detail to decide to assassinate him.

      1. Probably happen around Tuesday, March 15….

        1. No, that’s the customary time for the Senate to strike.

          The Praetorians are on less of a timetable.

        2. Et tu, Biden?

    2. If true, and I have no reason to doubt it, it is telling of the sort of gent he is.

      One of my former bosses was a jackass that way. He would try and schedule meetings on the 23rd and stuff like that even though he knew damn well the office was not in work mode. He just wanted to show how much of a worker he was. It was all theater for optics. Asshole.

      1. Go back and look. Even Bill Clinton didn’t pull this shit. Obama just doesn’t care.

        1. Where can you look up these things?

          1. Do a google search for “President vacation at Christmas” and look at the old news clips. You can figure out where any President over the last 25 years was based on the newspaper accounts.

            Even if other Presidents pulled this shit, that just means they suck too. It doesn’t make Obama look any better.

      2. I always enjoy the 4PM Friday meetings…

        “Dave’s not here”

    3. He has also had to remove his jewelry and send his wedding ring in for repair.

      Seems like that damn wedding ring breaks every year during Ramadan when Muslims aren’t allowed to wear jewelry.

      Life is full of funny coincidences.

  30. Beijing issues 2nd smog red alert of the month

    China’s capital Beijing issued its second smog red alert of the month on Friday, triggering vehicle restrictions and forcing schools to close.

    A wave of smog is due to settle over the city of 22.5 million from Saturday to Tuesday. Levels of PM2.5, the smallest and deadliest airborne particles, are set to top 500, according to the official Beijing government website.

    That is more than 20 times the level that is considered safe by the World Health Organization.

    Half the city’s cars will be forced off the road on any given day, while barbecue grills and other outdoor smoke sources will be banned and factory production restricted. Schools will close and residents advised to avoid outdoor activities.

  31. “The public relations firm behind some of the world’s most progressive organizations has dramatically closed after its founder and figurehead received what one staffer described as “an avalanche” of complaints about sexual harassment and assault by his employees.”

    Check his face out. Punchable or what?…..SApp_Other

    1. I can smell his hot halitosis breath from here. You just know there will be progressives bemoaning the fact that his employees didn’t just take one for the team so that he could continue his mission to make this a better world

    2. Well apparently he was pretty good at his job if it took this long for him to go down.

      1. You know who else was good at his job? (Despite numerous offesive acts)…

          1. Excellent example.

        1. Let’s get this out of the way.


          Actually…sometimes I wonder.

          1. Fuck if he had listen just a few times to his better generals (Rommel later on, but particularly on the Eastern front.) things could have been much different. He also let his hatred for Jews interfere with fighting the war.

        2. Marv Albert?

        3. David Allan Coe?

  32. REPEAT OT: Derpitologist sends his regards from teh Armee!!! He sent this Spot the Not via Fort Sill !! Since he’s in the ARmy, which of these has NOT happened:

    1) a drill sgt tried to run him over with a bus
    2) Derpy was nicknamed “Mailman”
    3) When he got his head shaved, he told the barber, “Just a little off the top”
    4) He did 580 pushups in an hour
    5) He got paid to watch a Kung Fu movie
    6) He spent an hour outside in the wind and sleet with no hat or gloves

    The fun’s just starting! He also has to do 15 pushups for every letter he gets, so I’m starting a drive at my church….

    Sounds like he’s not having too bad a time. I think I have a return address that works (he told me not to use the first one he sent), so I’ll pass along regards – I know Tonio said hey. Think he’s also contacted jesse. Will keep you posted as we receive more correspondent from our very own baby killer!!! Um, senstive, non-harrassing baby killer (he’s already getting his “be nice to teh wimminz” brainwashing).

    1. Whoops – I think that was meant to be “Derpetologist” – I can haz a lak uv typin skeels.

    2. Holy shit, he’s at Fort Sill? I’ll be in Lawton all next week.

      1. My brother did his basic at Fort Sill before heading on to the 101s. He learned his artillery there.

      2. Ft Sill, while not the WORST post in the Army (some serious competition there) is still a fucking desolate shithole. Feel for the guy.

    3. You know who else sent his regards from the army…

        1. Me 2?

    4. That all sounds kind of fun, sans the standing in the sleet part. And Oklahoma is fucking cold in the winter. It may not snow very often but the wind always blows and my God does it get cold.

      1. Everybody from the upper midwest thinks you’re a wuss, John.

    5. Those all sound legit. I guess #5

    6. I’m going with #1

    7. My guess is number 2.

    8. Wow. That’s some dedication on his part.

      General: CHARGE!
      Derp (furiously typing on keyboard as he runs): Hang on! Sent! Okay! CHARGE!

    9. I’ll go with #1; I doubt a DS would ‘try’.

      There is no try, there is only do.

      Outside an hour without hat and gloves is called PT.

    10. Ima say #1, since I doubt the drill sargent would deliberately try to run him over, although he might not have given a shit if derpy happened to be in the way.

    11. Thanks. And if there’s a way to get a letter to him without posting any personal info (his or yours) here, let me know. I do correspond with Jesse occasionally, so that might be an option.

  33. The man who married Putin’s daughter and then made a fortune

    At the time of the wedding, Kirill ? a tall, dark-haired man with rimless glasses – was a rising star of Russian business, but still only 31. His fortunes began to skyrocket soon after his wedding to the president’s daughter, a competitive acrobatic dancer who is now helping to oversee a $1.7 billion expansion of Moscow State University.

    Within 18 months, Kirill acquired a large chunk of shares in a major Russian oil and petrochemical processor called Sibur – a stake now worth an estimated $2.85 billion, based on the value of recent share deals. He also quit his job as a business manager and set up a company to run his personal investments.

    How did such a young businessman go so far, so fast? A Reuters examination of Shamalov’s career shows that in the summer of 2013, months after he married Putin’s daughter, Kirill opened discussions about buying shares in Sibur from one of the president’s wealthiest friends.

    so it’s like the US then?

    1. +Chelsea Clinton

      1. Chelsea Clinton =/ competitive acrobatic dancer

    2. Putin said Blatter deserves a Nobel prize.

      That’s the final straw. Now I know he’s shit disturbing for its own sake. No sane human would think this.

      1. I can’t help it, but I like Putin. I don’t mean that I hold him up as a model of a freedom loving, modern day Thomas Jefferson. But in a world of flawed, and outright stupid fools who are hell bent on running the west into the ground, he at least seems to have some sense of actually caring about his country.

        Don’t misunderstand me. I don’t want him as our president. But, honestly, compared to some of the dipshits and utter tyrants out there, we could actually work with him, to the betterment of BOTH our countries.

  34. Parents Question Choice To Sing ‘Allahu Akbar’ At Holiday Concert

    A spokesman for the district said the Arabic song will be sung during an audience participation portion of the concert.

    Oh, *excellent* choice.

    1. Public education cannot be ended fast enough.

    2. Also kind of an odd choice considering Ramadan was in June-July.

    3. More multicultural nonsense.

      1. FFS this is just ridiculous. I have chosen the Germanic pagan path, but my wife (and thus our kids) are Jewish (It’s a long story). While it is nice if school sings the dreidel song in the Christmas concert or if the teachers ask the kids about Jewish traditions, I am teaching them not to get butt hurt about all this. Let the vast majority of Americans enjoy their freaking holiday! It doesn’t mean that they are forcing us to do or believe anything.
        But forcing this bullshit into the holidays (especially when there isn’t even a Muslim holiday at this time this year) is just stupid.

        1. So… raising the kids as jewish aryans?


          1. That way when the Feds arrest us all, if I get sent to hardcore prison I can hook up with the White Power dudes. But if they only get me for some financial thing, I can do Shabbos dinner on Friday night with all the accountants in jail for fraud.

            1. Sir, do you have a newsletter…?

            2. BearOdinson – the most interesting man in Midgard.

  35. Seen in LH’s genital burning link:

    Former student sues Utah school district for failing to protect him from sex predator ex-teacher

    I dislike the simplistic “how bad could it really have been for the teen to be having sex with her” response that these stories seem to illicit, but how bad could it have been to have sex with her? C’mon!

    1. Have sex with hot teacher, then play victim to get money. This guy’s going places.

    2. I will never understand these broads. They could walk into any bar they wanted and sleep with some random 20 year old dude. At least with the middle aged males, it’s at least tougher to get it.

      1. I assume it has something to do with spending hours every day with hormonal young bodies more than just wanting to get laid.

        1. I assume it has to do with hormonal young bodies greasing her ego, and her deciding to live out a fantasy where she is the confident, dominant one in the relationship(s).

          1. Yep. And while there is certainly an ethical concern regarding grades etc, I fucking promise you the boys who this happens to don’t feel like victims!!
            It is a double standard for boys and girls, and rightly so!! As a man, in general, I don’t look back and regret sleeping with anyone. Oh, there may be a few I am not proud of (he he), but what is there to regret! (Obviously a man may regre cheating on someone, but I am only referring to cases of both people not being attached).
            But it is different for girls (that is also not to say that a savvy 16 yo mind couldn’t decide to seduce the lonely 45 year old math teacher).

            1. Minx!! Fucking auto correct!!!!!

  36. A RHINO’s RHINO. Apparently Jeb Bush refuses to say he will support Trump over Hillary if Trump gets the nomination.

    If that isnt throwing off the mask I don’t know what is. The R establishment prefers the D establishment over an R elected by the R base who would rock the boat.

    1. Yeah, I ain’t either TEAM, and I’D fucking support that idiot Trump over Hilldog. That’s not even a tough call. He’s a monkey spank. She’s actively, purposefully evil. Big diff.

      1. Jeb is Team Crony.

  37. The Dangers of walking while texting.


    1. needz moar toshiro mifune

      1. or Takeshi Kitano

        1. Samurai Futaba?

          1. Zatoichi never had this problem!

      2. What about the other six Samurai?

        1. I was thinking more of the hapless youths in Sanjuro who were whipped into shape by Our Hero, before he killed Tatsuya Nakadai in one of the great cinematic staredowns

          1. After actually watching the vid, I see your point. And that was also a great movie.

          2. If I wasn’t happily married, I

            1. I’m just gonna’ let that post dangle there. No explanation.

              Time for a long jog on the beach path. Happy Friday, Reasonoids!!

  38. Saudi Arabia orders execution of teenager for attending a PROTEST

    They have … undergone medical examinations, which seem to suggest their beheading is imminent.”

    Emphasis added. Allah is merciful.

    1. And yet the very same friends of mine who have spent the last six years posting meme after meme on Facebook about women’s rights and gay rights and of course gay marriage are today telling the world that “We are all Muslims”, per Michael Moore. I wish them luck with that.

      It just astounds me how stupid people are. They just live in a fantasy world.

      1. “The Saudis are not *real* Muslims.”

        1. You can’t be a real Prog these days, or an open borders Libertarian for that matter, unless you personally know a hard working peaceful Muslim. It is just like you couldn’t be a Prog a few years ago unless you knew a loving gay couple in a long term relationship who just wanted to get married.

          The rest of the world isn’t real to them. They totally dehumanize even the people they claim to support by making them into cardboard cutouts that play in their little moral fantasies.

      2. Moore’s sign was a bit confusing: it said “We ate all Muslims.”

    2. Why would they need medical examinations – Do the saudis harvest the organs of criminals for transplant? I mean beheading a healthy person is a great way to get a full stock of transplantable organs.

    3. And yet the Saudis are somehow in America’s “allies” column.

  39. Hagel: The White House Tried to ‘Destroy’ Me

    It was Aug. 30, 2013, and the U.S. military was poised for war. Obama had publicly warned Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad that his regime would face consequences if it crossed a “red line” by employing chemical weapons against its own people. Assad did it anyway, and Hagel had spent the day approving final plans for a barrage of Tomahawk cruise missile strikes against Damascus. U.S. naval destroyers were in the Mediterranean, awaiting orders to fire.

    Instead, Obama told a stunned Hagel to stand down. Assad’s Aug. 21 chemical attack in a Damascus suburb had killed hundreds of civilians, but the president said the United States wasn’t going to take any military action against the Syrian government. The president had decided to ignore his own red line ? a decision, Hagel believes, that dealt a severe blow to the credibility of both Obama and the United States.

    “Whether it was the right decision or not, history will determine that,” Hagel told Foreign Policy in a two-hour interview, his first extensive public comments since he was forced out of his position in February. “There’s no question in my mind that it hurt the credibility of the president’s word when this occurred.”

    1. When the full truth of the last 8 years comes out, and it will as various people seek to avoid being blamed, it is going to astound and horrify anyone paying attention. Forget politics, Obama is the most incompetent and corrupt President in history.

      1. And utterly untouchable. The media will not go after him in any meaningful way EVER.

      2. FDR got a whitewash I don’t think it’s impossible for Obama.

        1. Racist fucking teabagger

    2. After dozens of paragraphs complaining about the incompetence, vindictiveness, and utter perfidy of the Obama administration, Hagel ends by saying he holds Obama in high regard and has a positive relationship with him. This is something you see a lot in exposes by former administration officials describing how awful the administration is — they never lay a hand on the special snowflake at the top, who chose every person in his administration and could fire them tomorrow if he wanted to.

      1. “If Comrade Stalin only knew….”

  40. A Virginia county has canceled school because parents are mad about a homework assignment with some Islamic writing on it.

    School’s out forever

    1. Just wait until the parents realize the math classes use Arabic numerals.

    2. Classroom teacher, Cheri Laporte, asked students to practice “calligraphy” by copying the Muslim statement of faith, also known as the shahada, which translates as:

      “There is no god but Allah, and Muhammad is the messenger of Allah.”

      I can’t believe she thought that was a good idea. In Augusta County, Virginia. I work with these people – they are quite Jesus-ey.

      1. Why were they practicing Arab calligraphy? Just exactly what part of the curriculum includes classical Arabic?

        1. Because public school teachers are lazy and like to give kids busy work. She just didn’t think this one through.

      2. Augusta County is hill country, it is known. Everyone there is surnamed either Shiflet, Shifflet, or Shifflett.

  41. NY Times Stealth-Edits Article to Remove Embarrassing Obama Admission

    If you read The New York Times’ story on President Barack Obama’s private meeting with news columnists Friday morning, you may have caught one quote that made the President look particularly bad:

    In his meeting with the columnists, Mr. Obama indicated that he did not see enough cable television to fully appreciate the anxiety after the attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, and made clear that he plans to step up his public arguments.

    But just as the quote was beginning to make the rounds, it disappeared entirely from the the Times piece, without a correction or any indication that the piece had been updated.

    1. So the only way he could understand that a series of random mass murders that killed nearly 150 people in two of the most important Western cities in the world caused people anxiety was watching the news?

      What a first rate intellect our President has.

      1. He is so brilliant, John, and our our earthly concerns are so base, that he has to mentally contort his mind to bring it down to our level.

        1. And he never had time to read about it in the paper.

      2. How is this any different than his reaction to any other major event? The guy is a narcissistic personality disorder and it shows through in spades every time he speaks. Nearly every time he opens his fucking mouth it leaves my jaw hanging. I look around to see if his supporters are picking up on just how far off target his speeches are and….nope. They are smiling and clapping.

        Go ahead, someone make the joke.

        1. I didn’t believe Tarran when he first claimed that Obama has narcissistic personality disorder. I was wrong. That is exactly what the guy has. He is totally incapable of seeing the world in any way other than how it affects him. It is funny as hell to see Obama’s media toadies talk about how Republicans so lack intellectual curiosity with absolutely no self awareness of the narcissist in chief they so love.

    2. How in the fuck is the NYT still in business? Are there really that many bird cages out there?

      1. “How in the fuck is the NYT still in business?”

        Carlos Slim is helping.

    3. Well that was dumb of them. Now it’s going to reach way more people than if they’d just left the paragraph in.

  42. I love the Prog meme about how Christmas is about a “refugee Middle Eastern Family”. They say that like they know what it means. Yeah, lets have that conversation. Joseph, Mary and Jesus were a Jewish family who fled Israel to Egypt. Let’s have a conversation about what the fate of a Jewish family who flees Israel to go to Egypt would be today. I would love to have that conversation. I doubt, however, the people who put up this meme would like it very much.

    1. Christmas isn’t about a refugee family, though.

      They weren’t refugees until later. The shit they were going through was so that the govt could take a census.

      That meme disappeared off my facebook feed damn quick after I pointed that out. #peeinproggiepunchbowl

      1. Very true. I am giving them too much credit. They were only away from home because of Roman bureaucratic insanity. They were not refugees. They just had to go home to be taxed. They are no more refugees than someone who goes to see their grandmother on Christmas.

    2. And Christmas is actually about a family forced to travel long distances while the woman was pregnant for the sake of government record keeping, which doesn’t seem to aid the progressive worldview.

      1. Government: Forcing women to give birth in livestock pens since 4 BC.

        1. That 0 BC you heretic.

          Repent, or I’m excommunicatin your ass.

  43. President Obama will give a year-end address Friday afternoon from the White House. After that, he departs for San Bernardino to meet with families of the victims, and then on to Hawaii for his vacation.

    I’m pretty sure it’s impossible for me to care any less about all of this.

  44. Trump went on Morning Joe this morning. Scarborough mentioned Putin’s nasty little habit of killing people who disagree with him. But at least he’s a leader!

    “Well, I mean, it’s also a person who kills journalists, political opponents, and invades countries. Obviously that would be a concern, would it not?” Scarborough asked.

    “He’s running his country, and at least he’s a leader,” Trump replied. “Unlike what we have in this country.”

    “But again: He kills journalists that don’t agree with him,” Scarborough said.

    The Republican presidential front-runner said there was “a lot of killing going on” around the world and then suggested that Scarborough had asked him a different question.

  45. A Virginia county has canceled school because parents are mad about a homework assignment with some Islamic writing on it.

    A Virginia county has canceled school to punt the focus onto parents for being mad about a homework assignment with some Islamic writing on it. Because, you know, we have to protect students from their bigoted parents.

    1. Maybe with tensions over Muslims running a bit high right now the school should just leave the subject alone and spend its time, I don’t know, teaching math, science, history or reading? How about that?

      Seriously, the very same dumb fucks who no doubt think “safe spaces” are a great idea can’t seem to figure out that it might not be a very good time to try and shove the “Islam is Peace” bullshit down their students’ throats.

    2. As usual Reason dishonestly describes the material at the link to reinforce their preexisting narrative, and the usual suspects at H+R don’t bother to follow the link.

      The “Islamic writing” on the assignment was Arabic calligraphy of the statement “There is no god but Allah, and Mohammed is the messenger of Allah.” — and the students were supposed to produce a hand-drawn copy of this calligraphic text.

      How would Reason respond to a teacher in public schools assigning homework requiring students to write “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”

      1. They would have kittens. But Islam is cool and Muslims are a beloved class these days. So this is totally different.

      2. I don’t really care about the assignment per se. It’s not propaganda, it’s some goofball’s idea of spreading tolerance. Fine, whatever. Choosing that statement for the lesson was obviously a very silly idea, and then defending it by appealing to the children’s ignorance even sillier, but the silliest part wasn’t their hamhanded effort at exposing children to Muslim culture but shutting down the school as if there were a credible threat. That was politically motivated to paint angry parents as potential powderkegs.

      3. Muslims are held to a vastly lower standard when it comes to separation of church and state.…..cafeteria/

        Like the time a Canadian school let a conservative Imam force girls who were menstruating to sit at the back of the room.

    3. I’m pretty sure that Muslims as well would get annoyed with amateurs badly scribbling their most sacred phrases. The devout consider sloppy calligraphy of religious texts to be an insult to Allah.

      1. Not ISIS.

        They claim the sloppy writing on their flag is purposeful to teach people not to worship writing but only Allah.

  46. Spoiler Alert:

    Why does the Empire continue to waste its money on highly vulnerable superweapons when its frontine troops and pilots are so poorly trained that the Empire’s inevitable defeat is much more a product of its own incompetence than any hostile action taken against it?

    1. Because Hitler. Super Villains can’t help but fall in love with super weapons. Why did the Germans spend enormous resources they didn’t have to spare on V2 rockets, that while amazing, were militarily useless and only good as a terror weapon, when they could have used those resources building ground attack fighters and more tanks?

      Evil always loves a good show. It just can’t help itself.

      1. I now have the mental image of Space-Stukas divebombing ewoks.

        Today is a good day.

    2. Wait… was that a spoiler for RotJ?

      1. Conspiracy theory:
        Saboteurs and traitors infiltrated the design team for the Super Star Destroyer


        , ensuring that the entire CCC system was located in a vulnerable location and that there were no redundancies. Do you even know the temperature at which plasteel melts?

        “The Bothans did this.”

      2. I believe that is a spoiler for approximately 50% of all SW movies.

  47. NOW we know where Soave find his source material. Prize to whomever spots the most articles published online FIRST in “The Torch” (link below), then later by RS at Reason…

    Hat-tip: Invisible Fury Hand for

    1. Invisible Fury Hand

      Sounds like a martial arts fighting style… or maybe a masturbation technique?

  48. None of my bosses is in the office today….long lunch or early departure? Or both?

    1. Both. You had best be gone by now!

  49. A Virginia county has canceled school because parents are mad about a homework assignment with some Islamic writing on it.

    In the interest of full disclosure, it wasn’t just any old Islamic writing. It was the shahada, the statement of the Islamic faith (“There is no god but Allah. Muhammad is the messenger of Allah”). And there haven’t been any explicit threats to the school.

    So, I guess it would be all good if a public school mandated The Nicinea Creed for teaching cursive? Or is this all about signaling the fact that you’re more enlightened than the rubes?

    1. It’s Staunton, VA. It was never going to fly with the locals in any case. You’d have to be a total asshat to think it wasn’t going to cause an uproar there. They might have gotten away with it in Alexandria.

    2. The better question is what the hell was the point? I can guarantee you those kids are not learning classical Arabic. So what is the educational value of drawing some pretty picture of nice classical Arabic script?

      Maybe those schools have taught everything and the kids are so educated that there isn’t anything better to do like more math, science or reading and such, than draw pretty pictures as an assignment but I seriously doubt it.

      The scandal here is not the content. The assclowns who assigned this have no knowledge of Islam and no idea the significance of what they were assigning. The scandal is that these ass clowns apparently have no interest in teaching their students anything of value or doing anything but pushing Prog bullshit. All this was was a bunch of half wit Prog teachers pushing the daily “Islam is peace” talking points. I guess I am just some racist asshole because I have this weird expectation that they should spend their efforts teaching kids rather than pushing prog bullshit.

      1. Just be happy they weren’t drawing happy glitter trees with messages about Paris and cutting carbon emissions. There is your propaganda.

        1. Yeah, this is like one million on the list of ten million instances of Prog propaganda bullshit in schools.

      2. I agree that it’s a lot more proggie bullshit than Islam.

        The thing is, I’m surprised Robbie didn’t identify a little more of the context. If a school had been handing out a writing assignment with an explicitly Christian message, folks here would be all over it like stink on shit (and I think they’d be right). And if the folks pushing the explicitly Christian message responded to getting called on it by playing the victim (as they might be wont to do), they’d be the target of mockery and derision here.

        1. Yeah, lets start assigning kids to write “Christ is our savior” in Latin and see who Reason treats the Jewish and Atheist parents who object. Reason is pathetic on these issues. They do nothing but social signal to their Progressive friends.

      3. I think I’ve said before that the real threat isn’t nut jobs like isis, but with the nonviolent people who will work to establish theocracy by political means, including subverting our institutions to spread Islamic messages.

  50. The good news? Vikings is going to be 20 episodes in 2016!

    The bad news? They’re splitting the season into two parts.

    The good news? They’re splitting the season int o two parts.

    1. -2 missed opportunities to use the phrase “hewn in twain”

    2. 20 episodes. That is fucking awesome. Though, I worry they are going to kill Ragnar off and I am not sure the show can survive that.

      1. A little Wikipedia-ing showed me where they might be headed with the plot. Ragnar needs to be killed off so we can see what happens with Bjorn (and his brothers), Rollo & his eventual progeny, and Alfred. I’m wondering if they’re going to kill off Ragnar the same way the legend says he died.

        1. Rollo is Rollo the Viking the founder of the Norman Dynasty, William the Conqueror and all that. I am going to be sad to see Ragnar go. The show was always at its best when it was Ragnar and Largetha as the power couple.

          I don’t understand why the guy that plays Ragnar isn’t a movie star. He has more charisma in one of his fingers than stars like Ben Afflec and Matt Damon will ever have. The guy is a born movie star.

          1. Don’t forget Ragnar’s descendants. They’re all going to converge in England eventually – Ragnar, Rollo & Athelstan, via their children.

            This show just keeps getting better & better. I can’t wait til things really get moving.

            1. Yes, the Great Heathen Hoard. I figure that will be the climax to the series.

  51. I know the Big Bang Theory is not popular on here but it does have a couple of good lines about Star Wars namely

    What is the difference between Star Wars and Star Trek? There is none.

    and referring to dressing up as Chewbaka as going out in public dressed as a “big dumb space bear”.

    I like the way that show takes down geek culture.

    1. Have you watched the edited version with no laugh track on Youtube? It’s painful. Pain. Ful.

      1. I know everyone hates it. I like it. I guess I just have low standards for sitcoms. I don’t get why it is any different than about 20 other sitcoms that people like. It is not Cheers or Frazier or Seinfeld. But I have never gotten the hate.

        1. It is a show built around deliberately mocking stereotypes whose main source of ‘humor’ is insulting one of the few cultural subgroups I actually understand. As far as I can tell it’s primary appeal is in reassuring those outside of geekdom that they are somehow still superior to those inside.

          I don’t get the appeal.

          Plus, sitcoms are irksome because their plots revolve around people not behaving like real people in order to produce the “comedic” situation.

          1. I find the stereotypes funny. Maybe I am just a geek hater. The ironic thing about the show is that the biggest geek on there, Sheldon, is the only male on the show with any balls. I find the character’s ability to absolutely not care what anyone thinks and to always say exactly what he means to be a bit admirable in today’s world of PC bullshit. Sheldon is a bit like Cartman on South Park in that both of them are using an out of the mainstream character (Cartman being a child and Sheldon being a genius somewhere far down the Aspy scale) to say things we all would like to say but social convention prohibits us from saying.

          2. As far as I can tell it’s primary appeal is in reassuring those outside of geekdom that they are somehow still superior to those inside.

            I have watched quite a few episodes and I don’t get that message at all. The “mocking” is gentle and if anything, they’re sort of “celebrating” that culture.

            1. I have watched quite a few episodes and I don’t get that message at all. The “mocking” is gentle and if anything, they’re sort of “celebrating” that culture.

              We clearly watched different episodes then, because what I saw was downright mean-spirited and cruel towards geekdom.

          3. As far as I can tell it’s primary appeal is in reassuring those outside of geekdom that they are somehow still superior to those inside.

            I’m not sure I agree with this. Most of the non-geeks I know tend to view the characters as decent, likable, if flawed, people. Their weaknesses that you’re (okay, most of us not) laughing at are social, not moral, flaws.

            Compare that to the other major sitcoms out there right now. By and large the characters are awful people who I’m glad I don’t know. They’re mean-spirited, petty, or, at best, cowardly and venal.

          4. The most popular characters are the “geeks”. It’s doesn’t exist to make fun of geek culture.

        2. I don’t watch it regularly, but I catch reruns from time to time, usually when visiting my parents or the in-laws. I don’t really get how this show has been the #1 comedy on TV for as long as it has, but I think it’s usually funny enough. The various girlfriends are pretty terrible as characters and, of the few episodes I’ve seen, Sheldon actually gets geek-facts wrong with surprising frequency.

          1. I think it is so popular because it is as far as I can tell the last sitcom left on TV that commands any audience. The 30 minute sitcom seems to be going the way of the old variety show.

        3. Ditto.

          I don’t even see it as “taking down” geek culture. Just your normal hyperbole that you need to make a sitcom.

          And I don’t understand how “watching it without the laugh track” is a valid criticism at all. Lots of movies would be worse with out a soundtrack. So what? Have you ever watched Citizen Kane with all the sound turned off? Not nearly as good, unless you are a good lip reader. Or how about Gone with the Wind on a TV on a bad cable signal, so you see all the compression artifacts? Not very good either. Intentionally altering the artists original product and then complaining about it being worse is just stupid.

          I’d rather binge watch a whole season of Big Bang Theory then watch one complete episode of Survivor, or American Idol, or the Kardashians or any of the other “Reality” that are popular for some god forsaken reason.

          Wait. Wtf was I talking about? Nevermind. Get off my lawn you crappy kids.

    1. Alaska tied with CA, NJ, and RI has piqued my curiosity.

      1. MD more free economically than Wyoming? What the hell is going on here.

  52. I don’t know about Han Solo, but Chewbacca has certainly aged well.

    1. Ehh, he certainly looks the same (duh) but he was demoted from full on Character to moving prop.

      1. He was never a full character.

        1. That’s fair. “Full on character” is a bit of an overstatement.

          I do, however, remember him having much more agency in the classics (going apeshit when Luke tries to cuff him, ragdolling Lando, terrifying 3PO over space-chess). He may not have been a fully developed character (and he still primarily communicated through Han) but he carried himself with an aura of latent power.

          New Chewie is really only there to carry a bowcaster and get slightly miffed after the bridge incident.

        2. Someone never experienced the Star Wars Christmas Special?

      2. That’s really racist towards wookies.

    2. You’d think they’d at least add some grey to his fur. But maybe he’s been staving off the grey with patent pending Just For Wookies Gel.

    3. In keeping with the geek discussion above, canaon established that wookies are long lived, and can survive for centuries.

      So we can look forward to Michele being around for a while.

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