A.M. Links: Debbie Reynolds Has Died, Ceasefire in Syria, Obama Designates Two New National Monuments

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  • White House / Flickr.com

    Russia and Turkey have agreed to back a ceasefire in Syria. That truce is set to begin later today.

  • Debbie Reynolds, the star of Singin' in the Rain and the mother of Carrie Fisher, has died at age 84.
  • President Barack Obama has designated two new national monuments, one in Utah and the other in Nevada.
  • "Secretary of State John Kerry's rebuke of the Israeli government on Wednesday set off a wave of criticism from lawmakers in both parties. Republicans denounced what they said was the Obama administration's harsh treatment of a steadfast ally and Democrats signaled that they were uneasy with Mr. Kerry's pressure on Israel, even as they praised the effort to promote Middle East peace."
  • According to reports, the Obama administration is expected today to announce its response to alleged Russian hacking of the 2016 election.

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  1. Debbie Reynolds, the star of Singin’ in the Rain and the mother of Carrie Fisher, has died at age 84.

    Soave guaranteed Fisher was the last one this year.

    1. I am going to ask for my money back!

    2. Oh, come on, Fist — Everyone knows this stuff occurs in groups of three.

      1. This year it’s more like 300.

        1. The Boomer Generation is now Generation Bust. Circle of Life and all that. What, you expect all these aged folk, who most of them have pushed their bodily health and integrity to the edge, not to expose the wages of hard livin’?

          1. Keith Richards says hello.

            1. Outliers gonna outlier.

        2. Welcome to Sparta!!!!!!!!!!!!

    3. Mothers and daughters are so competitive, who didn’t see this coming?

    4. Hello.

      “Secretary of State John Kerry’s rebuke of the Israeli government…”

      Obama’s one last act on quite the incoherent foreign policy legacy.

      1. Obama’s one last act

        That’s like Suave predicting that Fisher was the last of the year.

      2. Obama’s one last act on quite the incoherent foreign policy legacy.

        You jinxed us. Now he’s going to do more crazy shit, like sanctions on Russia based on unfounded allegations or hurting the Democratic Party with factual information.

        1. I know, right? Dan Canadians always screwing it up.

          1. DAMN spell check

          2. “Dan Canadian” was my stage name when i was stripping in college.

  2. 272) Serious question: Why Twitter? Does it serve any actual useful function? I do remember during the Arab Spring in Cairo, people were using it to warn about where the authorities were cracking down in real time. So I guess that’s one good thing. But everything else I have ever heard, or observed, makes it out to be a nexus of snark, shaming, and bullying. Is it something like heroin or Bronies, where its followers get something out of it but no one else will ever really understand? Or does it have a legitimate purpose that I’m overlooking?

    1. something like heroin or Bronies

      Nice band name.

        1. “Heroin For Bronies”

          1. “My Little Pony Up”

            1. +1 riding the horse

              1. Chasing the little purple dragon.

                1. There’s a reason that dragon is named Spike.

                  1. I thought his name was Spyro………?

            2. If you’re wanna ride
              don’t ride the white horse
              If you’re wanna ride
              don’t ride the white horse
              white horse
              white horse?

    2. It’s another platform for communication, which makes it inherently good. How else am I going to know who’s an idiot? Where else am I going to find quick sources for my outrage addiction?

      1. You’ve never heard of a mirror, Fist of Reflection? *grins*

    3. Like pretty much all media in the modern age, Twitter contains a few gems buried deep in the massive pile of shit.

      I highly recommend the great Iowahawk. He provides more worthwhile entertainment on an average day than Hollywood.

      1. When there’s a Mike M. post with proper nouns, there’s fun to be had. Let’s play a game.

        Like pretty much all media in the modern age, Spitter contains a few gems buried deep in the massive pile of shit.

        I highly recommend the great IowaSpock. He provides more worthwhile entertainment on an average day than Jollywood.

        1. He provides more worthwhile entertainment on an average day than Jollywood Follywood.

          Amateur.

    4. I’m convinced that the only reason Twitter still exists is because it allows lazy journalists to indulge their worst professional impulses.

      1. You mean like libeling people for example? At least no one here at Reason would ever do that! (eyeball roll).

        1. At least no one here at Pre season would ever do that! (eyeball roll).

          1. At least no one here uses Good Seasons or would ever use that (on an egg roll).

    5. Two names: David Burge & Don Willett. That’s why Twitter.

    6. It brings out the bullies in people.

      1. So does H&R, you flannel wearing maple syrup licker.

        1. Rufus guzzles teh syrup.

    7. In one of my Comp Sci courses in college, the professor basically explained that the only reason Twitter gained popularity was because when it launched they literally paid celebrities to use it. The stupid human desire to obsess over every little damn thing a famous person does then drew in Twitter’s user base like flies to a corpse.

      1. I do remember it being sold that way in the beginning. How did I ever resist it.

    8. There are many gems buried in tons of shit. For every Iowahawk you get ten morons with green frog avatars screaming CUCK. I don’t follow many leftists but I’m sure the same is true of progs.

    9. Serious answer: Twitter is a vehicle for narcissists to express their stream of consciousness.

      I have no idea why anybody would follow a Twitter “personality” with regularity, but I confess that I sometimes enjoy a few minutes scrolling down IowaHawk’s Twitter feed.

      1. Suggestion: add Justice Willett to your scrolling.

        1. That would mean I have to do whatever one does to have Twitter on my phone or PC. Not happening.

      2. If you only ever occasionally want to see what snarky observation one or two people have to make, Twitter is just a shitty, character-limited, centrally controlled, progcensorious substitute for an RSS feed.

      3. I use it as a news feed from sources I trust. Much more specific stuff on screenwriting, mostly.

    10. does it have a legitimate purpose

      Libertarianism at H&R, folks.

      PS–anyone can understand heroin, square

      1. No one’s suggesting it be banned, just that it’s worthless bullshit.

  3. Russia and Turkey have agreed to back a ceasefire in Syria.

    They also have a standing agreement to back the sudden breaking of any ceasefire.

    1. More likely a ceasefire on paper and nothing more.

  4. Obama has designated two new national monuments

    And to his legacy there shall be no end.

    1. *opens book to ‘Ozymandias’*

      1. *** despairs ***

        1. *narrows gaze to sneer of cold command*

          1. The low and level executive orders stretch far away…

  5. According to reports, the Obama administration is expected today to announce its response to alleged Russian hacking of the 2016 election.

    And that fucker will start making cold fusion just as soon as it leaves the solar system.

      1. They’ve been teasing us forever on this response, same as “Cold Fusion is Here!” and “Voyager Leaves the Solar System”. Same principle.

        1. Just saw a TV thing about how pouring a little water and some unnamed compound into some Greek electronic device will revolutionize the power industry.

          We’ll see ….

          1. “Utilities HATE this one weird trick…”

            1. Keeping dogs in the yard so the meter reader can’t read the meter? Yes, they do hate that.

  6. Debbie Reynolds, the star of Singin’ in the Rain and the mother of Carrie Fisher, has died at age 84.

    Yeah, if I had even a shred of celebrity to my name, I wouldn’t leave the house or even my bed for the next three days just to be sure.

    1. Except most of them have died in their own home/bed, so going out might be a safer bet.

      1. Well, Prince and George Michael, in any case. “Most” might be an exaggeration.

      2. If you are going to stay in bed, just lay off the drugs for a few days

        1. The only reason, generally, celebs stay in bed is to get laid. I imagine complications from an STD or two might have gotten one or two of the celebs this here 2016.

      3. I think you’re trying to exploit a Schroedinger effect. If you stay in your house and cut off all human contact, then no one will be able to find out that you died until 2017, which means it won’t count for 2016’s high score campaign.

        1. The cat will know… because he is chewing on your face.

  7. Kerry’s rebuke of the Israeli government on Wednesday set off a wave of criticism from lawmakers

    VIDEO: John Kerry sticks his tongue out dozens of times during anti-Israel speech

    1. Who was that one frog tongued woman, the Mao lover that had the fly-catching thing going on during her speech?

      …Anita Dunn, right?

      1. Oh god dammit. She would be a UMD alumnus.

    2. John Kerry: another completely worthless piece of crap that nobody will miss. He’s basically white Obama with a ridiculous accent.

      1. Pr0n Barely, right?

        1. Lawn Fairy

          1. Brawn Hairy

            1. Schlong Berry

              1. Ghengis John

                1. John Hungus

    3. I wonder what Cal Lightman would say about that?

    4. I knew it! The Best Doctor has the real John Kerry imprisoned in a magical trunk and is using Polyjuice Potion to impersonate him.

  8. DON’T FUCK WITH ISRAEL!

    I haven’t seen this much bullshit about Israel since Dubya approved the giveaway of the Gaza Strip and the fundie-nuts went ballistic.

    1. Nothing like telling another nation how to constitute their government, eh Mr. 94% pure?

      “Yeah, just get rid of that Jew thing, and you will be fine. I mean, look, the Arabs will live peacefully alongside you!”

      1. As little as I care about Israel I side with them in the war against Islamo-fascism. Just not enough to go to war in Iran like the GOP kooks want to do.

        1. Going to war with Russia is a much smarter play.

          1. Think of the JOBS!!

        2. Heaping billions of dollars on them and greenlighting their nuclear weapon agenda, now that’s just smart politicking.

      2. Israel’s very existence is a violation of the 1st Amendment. The Founders demand that we purge this unconstitutional entity from the planet.

      3. You obviously don’t get it. It is okay if the right people — President Obama, SoS Kerry — do it. It is not okay if the wrong people do it like Putin, Republicans, or — heaven forbid– libertarians.

      4. It’s 92% pure, don’t forget about the balance of 8%.

        1. That’s to allow for Medical Care is RIGHT!(tm) to justify ObamneyCare and its stellar track record thus far.

  9. …the Obama administration is expected today to announce its response to alleged Russian hacking of the 2016 election.

    One final flaccid response to some real or imagined slight to close out the year.

    1. The response is going to be “Russia messed around with the internal affairs of another country so we’re going to mess around with the internal affairs of another country”. Probably Israel. Maybe Syria, Afghanistan, Turkey, Iraq, Yemen – one of those countries over there.

      1. oneall of those countries over there.

        /FTFY

      2. Obama LITERALLY SAID that we could “do stuff” in retaliating against Russia’s alleged election trickery.

    2. Either that or a response garnered to piss off Russia before jumping ship and letting Trump take all the heat for the fallout.

      1. I think Obama’s idea of transition is try to do as much as he can to tie Trump’s hands as possible. Primarily to cement his own legacy but also to cause as much trouble for Trump as he can.

        1. but also to cause as much trouble for Trump as he can.

          And by extension, the people that actually have to live with any negative ramifications. I for one, will not allow myself to be drafted to fight a war with Russia to defend the pride of the Democratic Party. I have more in common ground with Russian nationalists than I do with your average Democrat.

          1. I have more in common ground with Russian nationalists

            Libertarianism at H&R, folks!

            1. As usual, you utterly fail to make any argument. Just cheap snark.

              1. So you’re allowed to make observations, but other people aren’t?

                Libertarianism at H&R, folks!

                1. Call it what you want but you suck at it.

                2. Is this the new “For a magazine named Reason…”?

                  DRINK!

      2. I think Russia knows at this point Obama isn’t calling the shots. In a few more weeks Obama will be a back to rabble rousing in the streets.

        1. Doing the Lord’s work in some of the toughest neighborhoods in the country?

        2. I imagine he’s going to get back to “community organizing” without ever shutting his retard mouth.

          1. Unfortunately, the community, as a whole, he aspires to organise is considerably larger than Chi-Town.

      3. Either that or a response garnered to piss off Russia before jumping ship and letting Trump take all the heat for from the fallout.

        ftfy

  10. “Secretary of State John Kerry’s rebuke of the Israeli government on Wednesday set off a wave of criticism from lawmakers in both parties.”

    I’m not saying Israel’s right or anything, but do you remember that time when the Palestinians’ leader scuttled a years-in-the-making peace deal that would have transferred nearly all the West Bank to them?

    I mean, it’s not like Israel’s right here, but do you remember that time they removed all military forces from the Gaza Strip, only to see it taken over by a militant movement opposed to Israel’s very existence that basically took its people’s food money and bought rockets to launch at Israel instead?

    Not that Israel is doing the right thing exactly, but do you remember that time that every major party in the Palestinian areas, even the moderate ones, has as part of its official platform the complete destruction of Israel?

    1. You know who else had the destruction of Israel as part of its official platform?

      1. Osama bin Laden?

      2. The Babylonians under Nebuchadnezzar II?

        1. Also acceptable were “Judah” or Jeroboam.

      3. Goliath??

      4. Egypt?

      5. Haman?

      6. Code Pink?

        1. Oh Lordy…I had forgotten them. I suppose they will start garnering press coverage again, right?

          1. I’m sure they’ll feature themselves prominently at whatever the hell this protest thingie is after the inauguration. I have a friend that is a Code Pink “member” (worked for Cindy Sheehan for a while), and she’s coming to DC in advance to organize.

            Coming to DC from her house in Palm Springs, I might add. Same friend who brought me to a 4th of July party where the white people who comprised the entirety of the attendees talked about diversity all fucking night.

            1. One question:
              WHY?

            2. “Same friend who brought me to a 4th of July party where the white people who comprised the entirety of the attendees talked about diversity all fucking night.”

              Was it like that scene in The Aviator?

    2. That’s when I turned. ‘Member when disorganized Arabs attacked Israel and got walloped and took land only to have the world demand they return it? ‘Member when Arafat was given an incredible peace offer only to cynically turn to violence? ‘Member when the sniffling little dirt bag got a Nobel Prize for his actions? I ‘member.

      1. Pepperidge Farm remembers!

      2. “I’m afraid the Canadians have eaten the ‘member berries.”

        1. AND THEY’RE DELICIOUS!

    3. “official platform the complete destruction of Israel”
      This is the heart of the matter. There is no good faith negotiations ever going on. I can readily admit this is the one area I am a bit of a hypocrite on foreign policy as I like it when we are supporting Israel ( and wish we’d stay out of most everything else). Palestinians have a country already. It is called Jordan.
      I also know the real problem in the middle east is neither side eats bacon. If they all just ate bacon they would be happy and more peaceful. So there is that.

      1. I don’t trust any culture or religion that bans pork.

      2. Booze. Muslims can’t drink. Imagine being a Palestinian all the time and you can’t even have a beer on a Friday night.

        1. Are there cafeteria muslims?

          1. Are those like part-time Catholics?

    4. In many ways, Israel is in the wrong. But then again, I feel absolutely zero empathy for the Palestinians and surrounding Arab states that have done everything in their power to keep the region on the brink of all out war because it keeps the foreign money flowing into the region. Fuck ’em. The Israelis are the only ones with the wherewithal to build a functioning society that I could stand to live in.

      1. That’s me too. I despise the Israeli government, I despise theocracies in general, I despise them sucking up my taxes, and I think they’d be a heck of a lot better off if they had to stand on their own without us lurking in the wings ready to protect their delicate egos every time they say something stupid and piss off their neighbors.

        But I despise the Arabs even more, and I don’t know if it’s possible to draw a distinction between Arab governments and Arab people. To make destruction of Israel their official policy, to not let women drive or even leave home without a male relative giving the ok, to treat women worse than pets, to kill anyone who converts away from Islam while adoring those who convert to Islam. There’s not a single Arab country with anything approaching human rights, and this from someone who thinks democracy is a lousy form of government — but it’s still better than any Arab government.

        1. But I despise the Arabs even more, and I don’t know if it’s possible to draw a distinction between Arab governments and Arab people. To make destruction of Israel their official policy, to not let women drive or even leave home without a male relative giving the ok, to treat women worse than pets, to kill anyone who converts away from Islam while adoring those who convert to Islam.

          Even if the Arab governments were democratic, if you look at polling data about beliefs of the people in those countries, you’d run for the hills at the first sight of a ballot box being offered to them. For example, in Pakistan 78% of the population supports the killing of apostates. That number is 84% in Egypt and 86% in Jordan. 82% of Egyptians support the stoning of adulterers. The numbers go on like that down a long list of barbaric policy preferences. The Arab governments are not all that distant from their populations, it is after all the political culture of those places that finds such governments acceptable in the first place.

          1. Even Muslim countries like Indonesia and Malaysia, which look enlightened by Arab standards, are barbaric in their attitudes towards individual rights. Honor killings, apostasy killings, just barbaric and primitive.

            I do see a glimmer of hope. The Arab countries survive only on oil money, while Indonesia, Malaysia, and some other half-enlightened Muslim countries aren’t so lucky and have to actually earn their money. I see that as a possible future, that as their economies grow and the oil freebies fade, Muslim countries will actually get rid of the hatred they have for everyone else. I see it as sort of like Crusade-era Christians, killing each other and everyone else, but eventually economies got better and people had enough hope for a better future that just being assholes wasn’t as useful — they had better things to do, like make money and plan for the future.

            1. This relates to all unearned money, whether it be inheritance or welfare. It’s nice that the recipients don’t have to sweat bullets over the monthly rent, but when it’s replaced by an attitude of entitlement, it only encourages resentment and anger at everyone else who actually has a future that doesn’t involve being dependent.

              1. I couldn’t agree more. Oil seems to be simultaneously the best and worst thing for the Middle East.

                1. It does make me wonder why Norway, for instance, hasn’t reverted to Viking “barbarity” (which was still better than current Muslim morality) with their oil money. I can only guess because they were civilized to start with and had the recent memories of Nazi occupation.

                  1. It does make me wonder why Norway, for instance, hasn’t reverted to Viking “barbarity”

                    I know this challenges many peoples assumptions about human nature and human biodiversity, but it’s not the recentish memory of Nazis. For one thing, Norway has had a healthy culture for long enough to build some hard-to-destroy institutions like the respect for property rights and individual freedom that Nazism did not and could not extinguish, notwithstanding the numerous leftist divergences.

                    But more importantly, the Norwegian population is (on average) smarter than than the Middle Eastern population is (on average). That carries with it a whole host of social implications regarding the wherewithal to build and keep beneficial social institutions.

                    1. I don’t believe for a second there is any smarter or dumber at play. I believe it is entirely cultural, consisting of a barbaric religion and no experience with individual freedom, which also stems from living in deserts and the associated extreme scarcity.

                      I also didn’t mean to imply that Nazi occupation was a primary reason. I meant that the memory of it may have provided some reminders of what evil meant and was possible, in contrast to a sane domestic society. The Arabs like to complain about being colonized by Europeans and having all those artificial borders, but they weren’t civilized before; the destruction caused by imperialism was different only in superficial manners from their own self-imposed imperialism.

                      Arabs may have been relatively civilized compared to Europeans in the first few decades under Islam, but they have regressed since.

                    2. I don’t believe for a second there is any smarter or dumber at play.

                      I don’t blame you, most people don’t. Although, Norway average IQ=100, Iraq average IQ=87. Intelligence makes a very real difference in life outcomes for individuals and for groups of individuals writ large all the same. You can claim that intelligence is almost entirely environmental, which is wrong but let’s just say it is, even then the fact remains that IQ still makes a positive difference in life outcomes like quality of life, time preference et cetera. So saying the prevailing levels of intelligence don’t get any play with social outcomes seems like the intellectual equivalent of closing your eyes and screaming “no it’s not real!” at a real thing sitting in front you.

                      I believe it is entirely cultural, consisting of a barbaric religion and no experience with individual freedom, which also stems from living in deserts and the associated extreme scarcity.

                      I don’t disagree that they’d be better off without their religion and culture holding them back, but people are diverse everywhere and in basically all things that make humans human. Just like every other species affected by environmental selection pressures.

                    3. Arabs may have been relatively civilized compared to Europeans in the first few decades under Islam, but they have regressed since.

                      That Golden Era we hear so much about is a half truth at best. It was relative to other times and places in the Muslim world, a time when the religious authorities were relatively weak and the culture was relatively tolerant towards outgroups which facilitated Christian, Jewish and Zoroastrian intellectuals developing real innovations that were being kept at bay in Europe. The Muslim world did as well as it did in that period despite Islam, not because of it. Whatever merits Arab culture had in that time period, it was almost certainly not Islam promoting innovation and tolerance.

                    4. IQ tests are a laugh. They measure so much culture that they are meaningless. They also measure mostly knowledge, not brain power.

                    5. IQ tests are a laugh. They measure so much culture that they are meaningless. They also measure mostly knowledge, not brain power.

                      Alright so then there’s absolutely no correlation between people’s “measured intelligence” and their educational attainment, criminality, income, profession, birth rate, and time preference, to name but a few. I suspect a great many statisticians would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

                    6. Although, Norway average IQ=100, Iraq average IQ=87.

                      That doesn’t make any sense. The test is normalized to 100 by the administering body. Who administered these tests, how were the scores normalized, and what were the standard deviations?

                    7. That doesn’t make any sense. The test is normalized to 100 by the administering body. Who administered these tests, how were the scores normalized, and what were the standard deviations?

                      Saying you have an IQ of 100, doesn’t mean you’re at the top of the scale, it’s not a percentage or whatever. Ashkenazi Jews average above 110, Koreans and Japanese are also north of 100. You start approach extremely rare levels of genius at about 155 or 160. The average of individuals in a group are just that, an average.

                    8. That doesn’t make any sense. The test is normalized to 100 by the administering body. Who administered these tests, how were the scores normalized, and what were the standard deviations?

                      Saying you have an IQ of 100, doesn’t mean you’re at the top of the scale, it’s not a percentage or whatever. Ashkenazi Jews average above 110, Koreans and Japanese are also north of 100. You start approach extremely rare levels of genius at about 155 or 160. The average of individuals in a group are just that, an average.

                    9. The average of individuals in a group are just that, an average.

                      No shit. And that average should be equal to 100. And the standard deviation should be equal to 15. That is how the test is set up. Any time you point to a group whose average IQ is not 100 or whose standard deviation is not 15, you have to make reference to the sample group that was used to normalize the test. And that sample group must be consistent for two IQ scores to be compared. A lot of time, identifying the administering body provides a good proxy for identifying the normalization rules that were actually used.

                      Put another way, all your numbers are meaningless unless they came from the same test. However, any such claim would be dubious from the start since Norway and Iraq do not share a common language and so cannot possibly have been administered the same test.

                    10. No shit. And that average should be equal to 100. And the standard deviation should be equal to 15

                      In a room with two people, one has an IQ of 160 and the other an IQ of 85. What’s the average? 126, my oh my the number is higher than 100 how can that be? The normalizing of the tests between groups is the job of those doing the survey. How this is done, the controls and how the variables are measured in the first place is covered in this fine book by Charles Murray.

                      I don’t need to spout off a litany statistical figures that go into the result just to talk about the result. In short, I don’t need to be a statistician in order to cite a statistical finding.

                      Put another way, all your numbers are meaningless unless they came from the same test. However, any such claim would be dubious from the start since Norway and Iraq do not share a common language and so cannot possibly have been administered the same test.

                      That’s a cute notion. I’m getting tired of restating what was already said, so I’ll just repost this:

                      Alright so then there’s absolutely no correlation between people’s “measured intelligence” and their educational attainment, criminality, income, profession, birth rate, and time preference, to name but a few. I suspect a great many statisticians would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

                    11. In a room with two people, one has an IQ of 160 and the other an IQ of 85. What’s the average? 126, my oh my the number is higher than 100 how can that be?

                      And you want to lecture me about subscribing to newsletters.

                      How this is done, the controls and how the variables are measured in the first place is covered in this fine book by Charles Murray.

                      If we were talking about groups inside the U.S., then that would be a valid citation.

                      In short, I don’t need to be a statistician in order to cite a statistical finding.

                      Except that you did not cite a statistical finding. You did not provide any citation at all, nonetheless one that connects both numbers back to the same statistical method.

                2. Oil seems to be simultaneously the best and worst thing for the Middle East

                  Frank Herbert may just have offered some salient metaphorical commentary on this. Perhaps.

            2. There is a case to be made that oil ended up being a negative for these countries in the long run (although great for their government leaders) because the resource economy crowds out everthing else. It’s called “Dutch Disease”.

              https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dutch_disease

              PS: In going through the notes to this article, I’ve come to the conclusion that Paul Krugman was a retard 30 years ago too.

        2. ” I despise the Israeli government, I despise theocracies in general”

          Isn’t Israel more of an ethnic nation-state than a theocracy? I mean, I’m sure it’s appealing to very pious Jews, but I’ve never heard of atheist people of Jewish descent getting shit on by the law like they would in the various real Christian and Muslim theocracies I am familiar with.

          1. It may not be a theocracy in the Arab sense, but there’s a lot of pro-Jew bias — Sabbath regulations, religious students who can’t be drafted and in fact get monthly stipends, etc. That’s enough theocracy in my mind.

            1. religious students who can’t be drafted and in fact get monthly stipends

              The former is no longer true, although it remains a contentious issue among the Haredim, and the latter is changing, too.

          2. You’re familiar with “various’ Christian theocracies?

            1. There are plenty, if you look back in history. Which people really ought to do.

          3. Honestly, Israel is about as much of theocracy as the U.K. is; indeed, given the Queen’s role as head of the Church of England, the British are probably more theocratically established in government than the Israelis.

    5. Remember the only time the PLO took peace negotiations seriously?

      The Soviet Union had just collapsed, eliminating the PLO’s superpower sponsor. The PLO had picked the wrong side in the Gulf War, pissing off the other superpower, and the leadership of that superpower passed from someone who was generally seen as hostile to Israel to one who was seen as friendly. And between low prices for oil and picking the wrong side in the Gulf War, PLO funding from Arab countries had been cut off.

      That’s when the PLO agreed to the Oslo framework.

      Then, of course, they gave up on it when their position improved.

      So, given a demonstrated history that the only thing that convinces the Palestinians to negotiate seriously is the Palestinians being under serious pressure, what’s the official Obama-Kerry tactic to bring peace? Pressure Israel and support Palestinians.

  11. …and Democrats signaled that they were uneasy with Mr. Kerry’s pressure on Israel, even as they praised the effort to promote Middle East peace.

    Friends need to tell each other the hard truths.

  12. I imagine a news conference announcing the ceasefire in Syria with the sound of small arms fire as background noise.

      1. And 155’s and 500lb bombs and napalm… but no chem.

        As far as we know.

    1. Teh Lightworker could pardon him….but I bet he just leaves it for Troomp.

    2. Might not be for treason, but it’s hard to feel sorry for the guy:

      Gray was convicted and condemned to death in military court in 1988 for two murders and three rapes in the Fayetteville, North Carolina, area while stationed at Fort Bragg and serving as a cook. He pleaded guilty in civilian courts to two other killings and five rapes.

      1. And here I was hoping it was Bergdahl.

        1. ^This

  13. On FBN a few minutes ago, Art Laffer (paraphrasing):

    Trump is going to be heavily involved with the economy on the micro level, which is great, it’s just how a CEO would run things, just how it should be.

    sigh

    1. Maybe we could distract him with one little micro corner of the …say, casino industry and he would be too busy to fuck up the rest?

      1. Hmm. How about a National Lottery to pay off the Debt?

        1. Winner Loser gets stuck with the tab?

        2. and online poker? Count me in.

    2. That’s the worst way for a CEO to run things. It’s one of the reasons Bob Nardelli’s tenure at Home Depot is taught as a warning to MBA students everywhere.

      1. A good CEO espouses a broad vision, hires great people, and delegates.

    3. Jeezus. I would hope the CEO of my company has better things to do than be concerned with the running of the web site. I expect a CEO to be making deals and publicizing the company, not telling me what hexcode value to use for H2s.

    4. DAFUQ?

      This Laffer guy is obviously an academic who has never actually worked in business. Any real CEO leaves the details for the managers at the level where they matter. The CEO’s role is to hire the right managers and guide them at the highest level, not to be involved with the day-to-day details. He/she would never get anything done if that was his/her focus.

    5. He manages to get the roles of both President and CEO wrong.

    6. Yes and no. The CEO shouldn’t micro everything, but it’s not unreasonable to say that in the early stages of a new CEO’s tenure, especially if he wants to make sweeping changes, he should micromanage some things to help set example/tone/whatever for the lower-level management.

  14. Sex gets better with age as focus shifts to quality over quantity in the bedroom

    Sex gets better as we get older because we develop more ‘sexual wisdom’ in our later years.

    Older people tend to focus on quality rather than quantity when they are in the bedroom, a study found.

    Older lovers put more ‘thought and effort’ into sex that counters a possible drop off in libido in our 60s and beyond.

    They also draw on their experiences in life and use them to make themselves more considerate sexual partners.

    1. ‘sexual wisdom’

      *** snorts ***

      1. Hey, that is an “18” on my character sheet!!!!!

      2. Spoken like a whippersnapper.

        1. *** snorts ***

    2. Another reason to keep your cardio-vascular system in good shape. As you get older you actually gain both quality and quantity.

    3. Yeah, as considerate as an old fuck might be, I bet almost every one of the male respondents would rather fuck a twenty-something girl at the first opportunity.

      1. or two twenty-something girls*

        *but at my age one would suffice

          1. Pedo Bear Alert.

            1. I meant that you cut her in half first, or maybe just utilize one half or the other without cutting, either way. Jeeese, I’m not some sicko.

    4. I have yet to see any evidence of this whatsoever

  15. President Barack Obama has designated two new national monuments, one in Utah and the other in Nevada.

    The one in Utah is to fake news, in Nevada real news.

  16. say what now?

    Steve Smith shines as Australia and Pakistan head towards soggy draw

    Not for the first time in a Test career now well set in a period of sustained brilliance, Australian captain Steve Smith’s timing was impeccable on day four of the Melbourne Test. No sooner had the Australian captain driven through cover to bring up his 17th Test century than umpires Ravi and Gould stopped play for a monsoonal downpour, which struck at 2.50pm at the MCG and did not clear.

    For the rest of the day’s play the sun fried but never entirely frazzled the Pakistan attack, among whom only Mohammad Amir went without some kind of reward in between being clobbered to all parts by Smith, Peter Handscomb and, ever so briefly, their much-maligned team-mate Nic Maddinson.

    1. STEVE SMITH CLOBBER PAKIS WITH POWER BOWLING, THEN RAPE ENTIRE TEAM!

    2. Sounds like a typical Steve Smith story if you read it right:

      Steve Smith’s timing was impeccable on day four…driven through cover to bring up his 17th Test…only Mohammad Amir went without some kind of reward in between being clobbered

    3. STEVE SMITH ENCOUNTER LEAD TO SOGGY DRAWS, ALRIGHT.

        1. THAT NOT PHRASE STEVE SMITH HEAR OFTEN.

    4. STEVE SMITH FRAZZLE PAKISTANIS ANY TIME STEVE SMITH WANT.

    5. NOW THAT WHAT STEVE SMITH CALL STICKY WICKET

  17. Need some help. How/where do I log my accusation of cultural appropriation?

    With Trump as president, how did the Mexicans steal our wonderful Minnesoda cuisine to make their burritos better?

    But it’s the inclusion of green beans, tater tots, and cream of mushroom soup that carves a path from Mexico to Minnesota, the steps of which cannot be retraced.

    “We were looking for something that represented comfort food,” says Marissa Saurer, marketing director for Just Take Action, which handles inquiries for Burrito Union and Fitger’s, among other purveyors of food and drink in Duluth. “This is like a Minnesota church-basement potluck that’s wrapped up in a tortilla.”

    1. Burrito Union? Is that like some sort of Central American Hanseatic League?

    2. The food in Duluth sucks. Drive across the harbor and go eat in Superior

      1. Dude, you go to Wisconsin to drink, not eat.

        1. The only reason SIV goes anywhere is to have sex with male gamefowl.

          1. So while most upland game hunters go afield with shotguns and orange shell vests, SIV goes out in pink hot pants and pursed lips?

            I know that a good trait in your bird dog is a “soft mouth”, but never figured to look for that in a hunting partner.

          2. That is no game!

    3. This is like a Minnesota church-basement potluck that’s wrapped up in a tortilla.

      Barfman?

      (and this is coming from a native Minnesotan)

      1. Hotdish with hot sauce?

        1. hot sauce? What is this?

          Minnesoda is the home of Extra Mild Salsa No fucking way we are going to use hot sauce on anything.

          Sloppy Joe’s are simply hamburger simmered in ketchup. Some of the more daring moms would put chopped up onions in too, but they were way out there.

          1. Oh, yeah. When I lived in that area, the locals considered ketchup to be a spice.

            1. Wait. Are you saying ketchup isn’t a spice?

              1. I’ve never heard of ANY vegetable being also a spice.

        2. I made hotdish for dinner last night. My daughter asked “what is this called?” “Hot dish”, I said. “No, what is the FOOD called?”

          1. Get your kid to the eye doctor is she thinks hot dish looks like food.

            On the other hand, tonight is hot dish night at the Minnesoda Vatican (aka the Vikican). Lots of leftovers need to be eaten.

    4. “But it’s the inclusion of green beans, tater tots, and cream of mushroom soup that carves a path …”

      Shoot them. Shoot them now. Don’t let this spread.

      1. From wikipedia:

        Minnesota goulash is usually made with ground beef, macaroni, canned tomatoes, and perhaps a can of creamed corn.

        OMG I didn’t know my mom was from the Minnesoda section of Pennsylvania.

        1. just…….no.

          well, not just no, but HELL no.

  18. Custom-fit ‘drone sweaters’ make drones look and feel less ‘cold’

    Danielle Baskin initially created the aptly named “drone sweaters” as a joke but quickly learned they served a practical purpose for some drown owners.

    “It started as a joke/art piece, but actually drone-owners in cold climates have told me that their drones have problems with their battery life during the winter,” she told The Verge. “I was thinking that I should add pockets to the sweaters that can hold portable heaters or make the sweater electric so it keeps the drone at a warmer temperature, and actually this would be useful, if not just for novelty.”

    Baskin added that the $189 fashion accessories not only keep the drones from colder temperatures, but also help combat the “cold” mechanical look of the remote controlled aircrafts that cause some people to fear them.

    1. initially created the aptly named “drone sweaters” as a joke but quickly learned they served a practical purpose

      HAHAHAAA!!

      1. No, no! The practical purpose of putting $189 in Baskin’s pocket.

  19. Man opens fire on ‘clowns’ inside home, police say

    Officers were dispatched to the 1400 block of Birch Street on the morning of December 18 for the report of a man shooting someone inside the home, according to court documents released Tuesday.

    Those officers said they arrived to find that man, identified as Nathan Matthias, standing outside the home, holding a shotgun.

    The officers said Matthias told them he saw “approximately two small clowns” inside his second floor apartment.

    “At first, they were curled up in a ball, but then they started to run around, so I tried to shoot them,” Matthias told officers, according to the court paperwork. “Still clowns on the roof next door.”

    Police said they searched the apartment and found no evidence of anyone else having been inside. They did observe Matthias having bloodshot eyes, an odor of alcohol on his breath and a bottle of vodka in his pocket, according to court documents.

    1. Dude, clowns are so passe! It’s all Russian Hackers now!

    2. “Approximately Two Clowns” would be an excellent name for something, but i can’t figure out what. A sex move?

      1. A French New Wave film about what a frigid newlywed who is unable to perform for her husband until she discovers what truly turns her on.

        1. ? Peu Pr?s Deux Bufons, starring Audrey Tatou

          1. That turns me on.

      2. A rating for a middling comedy movie?

        1. Yes, that’s what Kurt Loder gave ? Peu Pr?s Deux Bufons.

  20. Think sharks are scary? There’s a new critter swimming in Biscayne Bay

    South Florida’s most aggressive invasive species has found a new way to grab headlines: slither atop a research platform in Biscayne Bay.

    Last month, a kayaker spied a 9-foot Burmese python wrapped around part of a platform more than a half mile offshore in Biscayne National Park usually inhabited by sunning cormorants. The sighting was a first for the park and another worrisome sign that the state’s out-of-control pythons are getting more adept at inhabiting the state’s salty fringes. In September, state wildlife biologists confirmed for the first time that the snakes are now breeding in the Keys.

    “It’s another raising of the notch in the war against pythons,” said University of Florida wildlife biologist Frank Mazzotti. “When you actually see something like this, how often does it occur that you don’t see it?”

    1. *paging Pro L’, Mr. Pro L’ to the red courtesy phone*

    2. Give it another 30 years and the entire state will be populated and governed solely by pythons. Of course, seeing presidential candidates campaigning for the python vote will be amusing, so it won’t be all bad.

      1. Free vet care!

      2. “Is that a python in your pocket . . . ?”

        1. “Oh shit it’s a python! Oh my god HELP!”

    3. “When you actually see something like this, how often does it occur that you don’t see it?”

      Well, i… what?

      1. Forget it, X. It’s Floridatown.

    4. These euphemisms are not very subtle…

    5. In September, state wildlife biologists confirmed for the first time that the snakes are now breeding in the Keys.

      How did they just know confirm this? Their numbers have been exploding for years, so up until this point did they think that some guy was continuously importing them and releasing them by the hundreds?

      1. I don’t think Pythons like to hang out in salt or brackish water. These are evolving into Florida Python. This should make the next big hurricane interesting. During Andrew, half the water in the Keys was pushed into the southern parts of Miami.

        1. New show on SyFy – Pyphoon

    6. The War Against Pythons will ultimately cost taxpayers $422 billion dollars.

  21. Too many air passengers fly with phony support pets, critics say

    How do airlines know whether these pets are true service animals and not impostors wearing an official-looking vest bought online for $39.99?

    Easy. Get TSA to “question” them privately.

    1. What is really needed is a large federal bureaucracy to certify service dogs. Maybe cabinet level?

      1. DON’T GIVE THEM ANY IDEAS!!!

    2. I bought one of those certifications for my dog, it’s fucking great. Local restaurants and bars let me take my leashless Border Collie with me every time I go. Some of them even know that it’s a bogus certification, but all they need is plausible deniability to ward off the health inspector so they don’t care.

      1. fuck you

    3. Filed under “no shit.”

  22. OT – If nobody has given the upcoming anti-inauguration concert a snarky name yet, I call dibs on TantrumFest 2016.

    1. TearStocked 2017

    2. LOLapalooza ’16

      1. Lollapa-losers’17

  23. What’s a spoon doing on Mars? Better yet, what are TWO spoons doing on Mars and HOW did they get there?

    In the future, astronauts may enjoy a pint of their favorite ice cream on Mars. And it appears they won’t have any problem finding something to enjoy it with, since spoons seem common on the Red Planet.

    A new NASA photo shows what appears to be a spoon covered in a layer of dust on the planet. More extraordinarily, it is the second such find in as many years. Another spoon was discovered previously.

    So, how does a spoon end up on Mars? Or TWO spoons for that matter?

    Unfortunately, the real answer isn’t exciting for most people, although geologists will be thrilled. The spoons are likely natural formations caused by water and dust, or other natural means.

    1. They were trying to keep warm.

    2. It’s the proper way to eat Mars Bars.

    3. They hitched a ride along with the dish when the cow jumped over the Moon.

  24. The psychology behind why clowns creep us out

    Rami Nader is a Canadian psychologist who studies coulrophobia, the irrational fear of clowns. Nader believes that clown phobias are fueled by the fact that clowns wear makeup and disguises that hide their true identities and feelings.

    This is perfectly consistent with my hypothesis that it is the inherent ambiguity surrounding clowns that make them creepy. They seem to be happy, but are they really? And they’re mischievous, which puts people constantly on guard. People interacting with a clown during one of his routines never know if they are about to get a pie in the face or be the victim of some other humiliating prank. The highly unusual physical characteristics of the clown (the wig, the big red nose, the makeup, the odd clothing) only magnify the uncertainty of what the clown might do next.

    There are certainly other types of people who creep us out (taxidermists and undertakers made a good showing on the creepy occupation spectrum). But they have their work cut out for them if they aspire to the level of creepiness that we automatically attribute to clowns.

    1. the irrational fear of clowns

      Nothing irrational about it, I say.

      1. Yeah the author seems to show that it’s rational, yet it’s somehow still an irrational fear.

    2. three words

      john wayne gacy

    3. “hide their true identities and feelings”

      Yeah, that’s why Pennywise was scary, he hid his feelings.

      1. He identified as a spider but stayed in the closet. Not his closet, of course.

  25. PLO official: Overall message of Kerry speech welcome, but parameters unacceptable

    Barghouti elaborated that the Kerry’s principles pertaining to refugees, recognition of the Jewish state, and Jerusalem are “unacceptable.”

    “First, you cannot make the issue of Palestinian refugees only an issue of compensation; you cannot deny people their right to return to their home,” Barghouti said, responding to Kerry’s point that most refugees will not return to their historic homes and instead receive compensation.

    “Second, recognition of Israel as a Jewish state would deny the right of the Palestinian people who are citizens of Israel and that is totally unacceptable.

    Israel cannot be a Jewish and a democratic state at the same time,” Barghouti continued.

    1. Derp. Disregard my comment below. I guess it wasn’t Kerry that said that.

      1. No, Kerry said it too.

        1. Wow. For a brief moment I almost thought that he might not actually be a blathering idiot short of two brain cells to rub together.

    2. Israel cannot be a Jewish and a democratic state at the same time,” Barghouti continued.

      Ah, talking point coordination with Teh Lightworker’s clown crew.

      1. Coulrophobe.

        1. I thought that was people with the fear of blonde skeletal harridans.

          1. No, those are called “Nick Gillespie.”

      2. Ah, talking point coordination with Teh Lightworker’s clown crew.

        ICP is collaborating on a, “Greatest Shits,” album? Face it, Juggalos will never be eradicated. Go long on Faygo Purple Drank, folks.

        1. I had to search Faygo Purple Drank. I am constantly amazed at the shit I don’t know. Wow.

      3. Well, he’s half right. Theocracy is only democratic for the official believers.

        Wonder what he thinks Arab countries are….. I guess they aren’t undemocratic theocracies because (a) Islam is fact, and (b) all right-thinking Muslims think alike, so they ARE democracies.

    3. “First, you cannot make the issue of Palestinian refugees only an issue of compensation; you cannot deny people their right to return to their home,”

      That’s why it will never end. Until they come to understand there is ‘no historic return to their home’ this madness will continue. These are not rational people who will say, ‘hey, they made something of this land and we’re gonna take part in it.’

      Nope. Let’s cling to our useless, fragmented nomadic past and existence.

      1. I’d like to start taking this as far as it can go. The Germans should start agitating for a right of return to East Prussia and see how far that gets them. Or the Cherokee to NW Georgia. Or the Icelandic to Newfoundland. Etc, etc. If this idea progresses enough then there might be a posh pad on a fjord with my name on it.

        1. Normans Out of Anglaland NOW

        2. I’ve got a loose claim on some Scottish Highlands lands. Just need the pope to sanction my invasion. Unfortunately my piety is pretty low.

          1. My people used to own a castle somewhere north of Eoferwic. We could be neighbors.

      2. Let’s cling to our useless, fragmented nomadic past and existence.

        Do you have to admit, it worked for the other side.

    4. That “Israel can be Jewish or democratic” line is probably the most anti-semitic thing a major political figure in this country has said since before WWII.

      1. Imagine if someone said:

        “The United States can be can be White or democratic”

        1. Imagine if someone said:

          “The United States South Africa can be can be White or democratic”

          It’s worked out swimmingly all the way around for SA. And the rest of the African continent, FTM. YAY DEMOCRACY!

          1. YAY TAG FAIL!

        2. “The United Kingdom can be Anglican or democratic” is the counter-example that pops to my head to prove the idiocy here.

      2. It’s entirely reasonable if you view democracy not as the self-rule of a community, but rule by technocrats over an arbitrarily defined geographic area with some cursory electoral input from whatever random set of people live there, with said lines being drawn so as to produce a set of voters most favorable to the local technocrats.

        1. It’s entirely reasonable if you view democracy not as the self-rule of a community, but rule by technocrats over an arbitrarily defined geographic area with some cursory electoral input from whatever random set of people live there

          Beautifully stated.

      3. No, he’s half right, but it’s what he doesn’t say about the elephant in the room that is interesting. Are Arab countries theocratic or democratic? The answer is NO.

    5. Israel cannot be a Jewish and a democratic state at the same time,” Barghouti continued.

      If the choice is a Jewish state or a democratic state shared with the Palestinians who vote for genocidal terrorists-turned-lawmakers, I’ll take the Jewish state.

  26. “Secretary of State John Kerry’s rebuke of the Israeli government on Wednesday set off a wave of criticism from lawmakers in both parties. Republicans denounced what they said was the Obama administration’s harsh treatment of a steadfast ally and Democrats signaled that they were uneasy with Mr. Kerry’s pressure on Israel, even as they praised the effort to promote Middle East peace.”

    Didn’t part of his speech imply that a Jewish state can’t be democratic? Isn’t that a bit offensive? I can’t know for sure since my outrage sensors are in a permanent state of disrepair lately.

  27. oh like he gives a fuck…

    Obama under pressure to prove Russian interference in election

    President Obama has ordered the intelligence community to produce a complete review of its findings before Trump takes office on Jan. 20. The White House has said it will make as much of the report public as it can.

    But officials have warned that the document will contain “highly sensitive and classified information” and it is unclear how much concrete evidence it will be able to release.

    Releasing any documentation of Russian interference would be a slap in the face to Trump, who has rejected assertions that the Kremlin was involved in the hacks on the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and Hillary Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta.

    The president-elect and his team have treated any suggestion of Russian involvement as an attack on the legitimacy of his election win, and Republican leaders in Congress have treaded carefully on the issue.

    1. But officials have warned that the document will contain “highly sensitive and classified information” and it is unclear how much concrete evidence it will be able to release.

      Prediction: They will release very little information, but have a heavy handed response. When Trump takes office he rolls back whatever sanctions President Obama has put in place over this fraud. Nancy Pelosi will then give a bug eyed, spittle laden speech on the house floor calling for Trumps impeachment because his rolling back any sanctions will be proof he is in cahoots with Putin.

    2. I imagine b this stuff is actually common for presidents to do (by this stuff I mean play domestic politics with foreign policy, but it is further evidence that any politician has a worse chance than a rich man of making it to heaven if you know what I mean.

      1. One of the primary causes of wars is to distract the people from domestic problems that government can’t solve and only makes worse by trying to solve.

    3. They won’t release anything.

      You can’t ‘release’ what doesn’t exist.

  28. “Democrats signaled that they were uneasy with Mr. Kerry’s pressure on Israel, even as they praised the effort to promote Middle East peace.”

    There was no effort to promote peace in the ME. In classic slimy, underhanded fashion this was Obama emboldening Israel’s enemies. He and Kerry are trying to put a stick in Netanyahu’s eye and shit in the nest for Trump.

    1. But I would think it would be easy to undo.

      Trump can go in and just say, ‘forget those two idiots. I’m here now.’

      1. The UN resolution is only as good as the world’s willingness to enforce it. And that willingness will be close to zero if doing so means incurring any penalty from the US.

        The interesting thing about this is that Obama is finally showing his true feelings about Israel and Jews in general yet Jews will still vote Democrat in 18 and 20. The Democrat Party increasingly and openly loathes Jews and Israel and are about to put a former member of the Nation of Islam in as party chairman. But Jews will still swear they have to vote Democrat because the Republicans are all anti-Semites who want to put them in camps. it is just bizarre.

        1. According to the Dems Trump is the Grand Wizard of the KKK.

          1. I have a good friend who is very liberal and half Jewish. She worked in the Middle East and is very anti-Israel. Even she thinks her fellow liberals have lost their fucking minds over Trump. She refused to vote for Trump because she was so offended by the videotape. But, she will admit that his politics are not crazy and the people saying he is the next Hitler have lost touch with reality.

            That said, she would never say that to any of her prog friends or work colleagues because they have gone so nuts there is no point in arguing with them and trying would just cause her personal and professional harm. I wonder how many liberals there are out there like her. I can’t believe they all have gone this crazy.

          2. I’m already seeing the Bush oxymoron come back. Trump is both a brilliant lying manipulator and a stupid retard with an IQ of 40. They want to have it both ways. Trump is responsible for a huge movement of rabid anti-Semitic Nazis yet he’s also going to be the most aggressively pro-Israel president in decades. You can’t have it both ways.

            1. “You cant have it both ways.”

              Unless you are a leftie. Double standards, having it both ways…the fun never ends.

              1. If it weren’t for double standards, a lot of folks would have no standards at all.

            2. Cognitive dissidence ain’t just a river in Egypt, broheim.

              1. Cognitive dissidence ain’t just a river in Egypt, broheim.

                Domestic Dissidence ain’t just a city rolling over Guam, either.

            3. There is a lot of oxymoron going on. My favorite is how Trump is both a paid agent and best friend of Putin and a crazed unstable war monger who is going to start World War III with Russia. I have had people tell me both of those things in the same conversation and then refuse to admit they are in any way mutually exclusive.

      2. He already did.

        “We cannot continue to let Israel be treated with such total disdain and disrespect. They used to have a great friend in the U.S., but not anymore. The beginning of the end was the horrible Iran deal, and now this (U.N.)! Stay strong Israel, January 20th is fast approaching!”

  29. It’s been kind of uh, interesting to see Obama flail around as much as possible before his presidency ends. I MUST HAVE MY LEGACY.

    It’s been a while, but I don’t remember any other president acting this way. Especially W, you mostly disappeared towards the end.

    1. uh, interesting to see Obama flail

      Well said.

    2. The Clintons spent the last weeks stuffing their suitcases with the silverware. Seriously, though, other presidents have used this last little bit for pardons and such things, not self-aggrandizement.

      1. Bill spent the last weeks selling pardons and Hillary spent it stealing the fixtures and the silverware. That is not an exaggeration. Hillary Clinton stole something like 200,000 worth of silverware and fixtures that later had to be returned. The Clintons really are trailer trash. They are just no class garbage.

        As much as I dislike the Obamas, I really do not think they are the kind of low rent trash that the Clintons are. I don’t think they will steal the silverware.

        1. Well, come on, their names ARE “Hill” and “Billy.”

        2. As I recall, they stole Abraham Lincoln’s rocking chair from the attic and pretended like they didn’t know what it was.

          1. The only rocking chairs in Arkansas are old, refuse quality recliners. It’s a common mistake, Freebie.

            1. It’s impossible to watch NASCAR without a LazyBoy.

              1. That’s LA-Z-BOY.

                Jeez.

          2. They also stole the documents proving that there were flying saucers at Roswell. When they need some extra money to pay legal bills or whatever, they’ll just auction those documents off at Christie’s.

            1. I always thought The Rotund Rebube, Gov. Tubby Tubbo, was a Grey. How anyone could mis-identify that gastronomical body is beyond me….

    3. On flailing. He does remind me of a basketball fight.

      Allow me…rrrrrrracist!

    4. He could at least focus on pardons. Trump can revoke anti-Russian sanctions, anti-Israeli policies, etc., but he can’t un-pardon someone.

      And pardons are one of the areas where Obama has been doing some useful stuff.

      Why not spend the next few weeks holed up with his Pardon Attorney, reviewing cases?

  30. This is mostly a story looking for donations for the parents of a severely disabled child. That’s not why I’m posting it. I’m posting it for the mother’s recounting of the time they traveled from Venezuela to Cuba for treatment:

    “We spent three long, hard months in Cuba; it was horrible,” she said. “Of all the things I have done for him, that was the one thing that I regret. Nothing went well there. He got worse. They experimented with his medication and he developed asthma, high fevers, even fell into a coma. They didn’t even have the little nebulizer masks. I had my husband send them to us. This is my personal opinion ? I am not a doctor, didn’t go to medical school, but I have done so much research on this for the past 17 years that I feel I am qualified to offer my opinion ? and in my opinion, it’s a lie that the Cuban doctors are advanced.

    “The chief of neurology at the hospital Diego was at went to Mexico to have an operation for an aneurism. I said, ‘If they can’t operate an aneurism here, how can they help Diego?’ Diego was never the same after that time in Cuba. I even had my husband send a photo album to me in Cuba so I could show the doctors pictures of how Diego looked before he got there. He could sit up, and had started to crawl, and when we left Cuba, I had to open his mouth to feed him.”

    1. Is there some kind of backstory that explains why they thought it was a good idea to go to Cuba for treatment? Were they really that stupid and believed the bullshit about “but Cubans have free healthcare”?

      1. They lived in Venezuela at the time.

        1. How fucked up must Venezuela have become if going to Cuba to medical treatment is considered a good option?

          1. Venezuelans are fed plenty of propaganda about the Communist paradise that is Cuba.

            1. Hell, Comrade Chavez Himself went to Cuba for medical treatment.

              1. “Hell, Comrade Chavez Himself went to Cuba for medical treatment.”

                Yeah? How’s he doing?

                1. He’d still be leading Venezuela into Communist paradise if not for the United States giving him cancer.

                  1. That’s right. I remember now. The CIA shot him from space with a cancer ray. Bastards.

                    1. The CIA shot him from space with a cancer ray.

                      Aggregated, reflected, pin-pointed cosmic rays from Mars, Suthen. It’s how he developed the pneumonia.

                    2. Reflected off those Martian spoons?

          2. Wasn’t Casto loaning Venezuela doctors in exchange for oil? Until enough of them fled to neighboring countries, I think.

            1. Yep.

      2. Here’s your backstory:

        from Venezuela

        1. I heard a number of horrific stories this morning from an interview with AP’s Venezuela correspondent, Hannah Dreier. One of the worst: armed thugs stormed a couples house, discovered they had nothing worth taking, and shot their ten year old daughter in spite.

    2. I do have to say this is a family that’s worked their asses off.

      In May 2015, fed up with the changes in the Venezuelan government, the Machado-Alarcon family moved to Miami. Their first home was the Ramada Inn in Hialeah. Alexander found a job at a junkyard called MOP Auto Parts, and he walked three miles to and from work before a co-worker lent him a bike. When he brought home his first $200 paycheck, they had a party.

      Machado, who studied law and business, gave up her job to stay at home with Diego. She spends her day carrying him up and down the stairs, changing his diapers, feeding him and helping him clear chest secretions. The family gets some help from the Advocacy Network on Disabilities, which nominated Diego for Wish Book. But they need more.

      1. Such is the story of socialism; nations full of hard working good people victimized in the name of the collective good. Socialism is a system designed to prey on people like the ones in this story and give the proceeds from doing this to the lying and corrupt.

  31. According to reports, the Obama administration is expected today to announce its response to alleged Russian hacking of the 2016 election.

    By pulling their hair and kicking them in the shins at recess.

    1. Are they planning to announce some proof that Russia hacked the election? If we end up in war over this, I hope one of Trump’s executive orders has everyone involved in selling the Big Lie strapped to the front of our vehicles as meat armor.

  32. http://www.infowars.com/soros-…..rld-order/

    George Soros loses what is left of his mind.

  33. http://www.cnn.com/2016/12/28/…..index.html

    The military is getting back in the execution business. I know people familiar with this case. Gray richly deserves his fate.

    1. This is another one of those cases where I will say that I maintain my opposition to the death penalty without feeling sorry for the person about to be executed.

      1. Yeah. There are some things that even though they are horrible and evil, I think a person could do and later be redeemed. I can see where someone who when they were young got into a fight and killed someone or tried to rob a store and shot someone or maybe was in a gang and killed someone because that was what you were expected to do. I certainly won’t defend those things but I could see how someone who did them could later in life truely repent and become a good person.

        But, someone who goes out and kidnaps and rapes women or just stalks and preys on innocent people for the pleasure of doing it is likely irredeemable. Someone who does that is more than just young and stupid or has poor impulse control or falls into for lack of a better term some kind of false consciousness where they think being in a gang and killing the other gang is the thing to do. Such a person is just fundamentally defective in a way that I don’t think can ever be fixed. Gray is one of those kind of people.

    2. Indeed. Maybe one day even Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (aka the mastermind behind 9/11) and Nidal Malik Hasan (aka the perpetrator of the Fort Hood Massacre) will meet the same richly deserved fate. Hopefully it happens some time before the year 2525.

    3. What a horrible human being. There’s still no practical reason to kill him, and there is still very little certainty as to the moral justification. It’s a risky business, taking life unnecessarily. (Obviously for him, as well).

  34. so-called Islamic State (IS) and Jabhat Fateh al-Sham (formerly the Nusra Front) “and the groups affiliated to them” were not part of the agreement

    In other words, they will now wage war against CIA backed groups. This should get interesting.

  35. Wondering if other Minnesodans have been following the Strib’s reporting on how kids are affected by where they grow up?

    The first part was about a poor black woman who was able to live out in the Minneapolis suburbs for a while (before her housing assistance was revoked). How successful her kids were before she had to move back to the inner city.

    The point I noticed is that when the story started she had two kids and no husband. Then when she lost her housing assistance and couldn’t afford the suburbs she had 6 kids and no husband.

    Is it crazy to wonder how much better financially she would be if maybe she had stopped having kids out of wedlock (or gotten married)?

    1. I think going from being one of two kids by a single mother to one of six kids by a single mother contributed to the kids’ decline as much or more than moving out back to the ghetto. Moreover, I wonder how many different men were the fathers of her kids. Wow, growing up in an environment were mom brings a parade of men into your house and they keep giving you step siblings that take her attention away from you might cause some bad family dynamics. Who could have seen that coming?

    2. The second part of the series looks at a woman who grew up in a poor rural county. According to the reporting, kids from rural shitholes have an advantage when it comes to succeeding.

      No shit, I grew up near Red Lake county and their isn’t much there. Pretty easy to move to Fargo or Minneapolis and do better than farming sugar beets.

      Also, both stories have repeatedly referenced the idea that the solution is to have people of all economic strata live close to each other.

      The key factor for all children is to grow up in a place where different economic classes live together, he said. In cities, the rich and poor live largely separate lives, and in the country everyone grows up together.

      “All classes are forced to interact in a small town,” said Winchester, the U sociologist. “Rugged individualism got our population here, but community keeps us here.”

      I’m not going to be too surprised when umpteen proggie urban planning committees begin using this story to push for suburbs to build more affordable housing.

      1. I often say about my small suburb: It’s like a gated community, but the gate is made out of money.

        The homes here cost about a 1/3 more as the closest suburb for the same size house. Also the property taxes are 2x as much. That does keep out first time home buyers, younger people, and the poor. But it also has really low crime, low hillbilly derp, and great schools. My block is made up of engineers,programmers, and other professionals. Also 98% white (!) – it’s practically a KKK rally here.

        1. That’s the case for a lot of places. I live 3 miles from my in-laws in a house that is basically the same size, age, floor plan, and acreage but mine would fetch 50% more because my kids’ elementary and middle schools aren’t 40% ESL.

    3. The area of North Minneapolis she lives in is bad, but one way to make it better is for people to own the homes they live in. This lady lived in a rental in Chaska through government assistance, now she owns a home in North Minneapolis. As somebody who lives in a primarily white neighborhood in South Minneapolis, I look forward to hearing my upper middle class progressive neighbors say horribly condescending and racist things based on this article.

    4. The point I noticed is that when the story started she had two kids and no husband. Then when she lost her housing assistance and couldn’t afford the suburbs she had 6 kids and no husband.

      It certainly makes it hard to empathize with the woman. So her welfare checks dried up and she had to once again face the full cost of her life choices. So fucking what. I hope it hurts.

  36. I want Glenn Greenwald to have my babbies (how are they formed?).


    The Guardian’s Summary of Julian Assange’s Interview Went Viral and Was Completely False

    This article, instead, is about a report published this week by the Guardian which recklessly attributed to Assange comments that he did not make. This article is about how those false claims ? fabrications, really ? were spread all over the internet by journalists, causing hundreds of thousands of people (if not millions) to consume false news. The purpose of this article is to underscore, yet again, that those who most flamboyantly denounce Fake News, and want Facebook and other tech giants to suppress content in the name of combatting it, are often the most aggressive and self-serving perpetrators of it.

    1. The purpose of this article is to underscore, yet again, that those who most flamboyantly denounce Fake News, and want Facebook and other tech giants to suppress content in the name of combatting it, are the only actual perpetrators of it.

      FTFY

  37. Trump chose Nikki Haley because he thought he could manipulate her into voting his way at the UN. She is naive, and she instituted anti-BDS laws in her own state (she was actually the first to do so). But she is also smart and principled and outspoken. The situation has changed on the ground and she has proven that she is unafraid to oppose Trumpianism. Trump will have about as much success at discrediting the UN as he had with the media – things will go south very quickly for him. I can’t wait for him to fire her and nominate Bolton. Good times, good times.

    1. I think taking that offer was a big career mistake for her. It puts her well outside the sphere of influence in DC and takes her far away from her own state. If she had Presidential aspirations, this is a really bad move.

      1. It would’ve been delicious if Nikki Haley would’ve come out in a press conference and said “I am so offended to been nominated to be the diplomat to the United Nations, what a worthless piece of shit organization”

        1. I already like her (for a politician), but if she did that, I would have probably donated to her next campaign!

      2. We’ll see. If UN ambassador is a stop on the way to SecState, she’ll be set up for the next election.

        1. she’ll be set up for the next election

          Given the volatile, back-stabby nature of politics, Counselor, I might suggest different verbiage…

      3. I think she does have Presidential aspirations and that she accepted the post in order to get some foreign policy experience on her resume. You’re right that it’s probably a mistake, though.

  38. You know, I think Trump might have actually been making a good point about letting our enemies know exactly what we’re going to do and when. Why would we formally announce and give notice for our plan to retaliate against Russia? It’s probably just Obama telling Putin to “just cut it out” again.

    1. I don’t think it’s even that. I think it’s just Obama looking in the mirror, Stuart Smalley style, and telling himself that his policies were “good enough, smart enough, and doggonit, people like me!”

      1. And the actual Stuart Smalley is probably there to agree.

  39. leaking information to embarrass Russian officials or oligarchs, and restrictions on Russian diplomats in the United States are among steps that have been discussed.

    Any attempt to retaliate will completely backfire. Why? Because it’s a witch hunt. Russia didn’t hack our elections. At least, no more than Fox News or Jim Comey or anyone else. But these attacks lend credibility to the existence of a propaganda war and that can escalate to a real war, e.g. in Syria. People just want to fight. Take a chill, peeps.

  40. “In southern Nevada, the new 300,000-acre Gold Butte National Monument could serve as another focal point of rural opposition because it abuts the ranch of Cliven Bundy, who led a standoff against Bureau of Land Management agents over land issues in 2014.”

    http://www.wsj.com/articles/ob…..1482965081

    Again, Obama is using the power of the President to settle personal grudges on his way out the door.

    It’s disgusting.

    1. But remember it is Trump who is thin skinned and will sacrifice the interests of the country over personal grudges. I think a lot of what drove people making those charges against Trump was those people compensating for their complete silence about how thin skinned, immature and nasty Obama is. At some level they know how badly they failed in excusing Obama’s behavior. So, they try and make up for it by projecting it onto Trump.

      1. It’s the same thing with the sanctions Obama announced against Putin yesterday for supposedly meddling in the election.

        Obama got repeatedly pwned by Putin over the years, and he wants to do some score settling–and Obama doesn’t give a shit about the interests of the United States.

        You know who else lashed out other countries because his favorite candidate lost an election?

        The correct answer is Vladamir Putin.

        Obama’s acting just like Putin shutting off the gas to Ukraine.

        1. Obama sent advisers and God knows how much money to help Netanahu’s opponent in the Israeli election. Obama directly intervened in a foreign election for the purpose of deposing a leader he didn’t like. And made no secret about his doing so. It is a bit rich to hear him bitch and moan about Putin allegedly interfering in US elections by leading authentic and embarrassing emails about the Democrats.

          1. Didn’t he also campaign against the Brexit?

            Why yes he did. In fact he threatened the UK, telling them that if they voted one particular way they would “move to the back of the queue”.

      2. I think you’re giving way too much credit to partisan hacks.

    2. It’s about the only thing he’s good at, besides getting elected.

      And yes, he is disgusting. Only 22 more days.

    3. To be fair, this was a great announcement for the thousands of semi-literate JR High School kids in the country.

      Not since they discovered the story about the Butte County Pirates has there been so much giggling in our country.

      1. I like big buttes and I cannot lie

    4. Yesterday, if Clive Bundy went on TV about how the President is out to get him, people might rightly dismiss it as a paranoid rant.

      I’d say, “Broken clocks tell perfect time twice a day”, but after Obama did this on the way out the door, I’m not sure Bundy’s clock was ever broken.

      One of the worst bullshit legacies of Obama will be that he was a peacemaker. He’s actually exacerbated conflict–and that he often did so while trying to make peace is inconsequential. In this case, Obama needlessly exacerbated the situation in our own back yard–just to get his jollies screwing over someone he hates.

      Nobel Peace Prize, my ass!

  41. Has anyone come forward to corroborate or refute ENB’s accusations against Eli Lake?

    http://tinyurl.com/gov27z5

    1. Wow. Eli Lake claims to not even know her or have ever met her. ENB is not an unattractive woman and someone you would generally remember meeting. I find it hard to believe she would lie about that. At the same time, the charge is pretty salacious. If Lake laughed about dead Arabs I would think he would do it more than once and someone would have noticed by now. Also, if it happened, who else was there?

      I don’t think she should be making such charges without giving the details of where and when it happened. That is bad form on her part. If it happened, she should say so with specificity not just make some vague “I have seen this but I won’t tell you where or when or who else was there” accusation.

      1. She was probably drunk tweeting.

    2. I have been wondering the same thing.

      “…Lake has been seen…”

      My first impression is that this is on par with Reid’s “someone told me Romney didn’t pay his taxes”.

      1. I expected better from her. I know Ely Lake from Job. Maybe it is true. I have no idea. But if it is true, she needs to give the details explaining when it happened and how she knows it did. There is nothing lower than to make such an accusation without any details or way to collaborate or disprove it. That is just bullshit.

      2. Then she claims it was the first time they smoked a bowl together?

        Even if the allegations were true, isn’t outing someone as a smoker kind of a dick move?

        1. More likely it’s a sign that in her circles it’s not something to be ashamed of or career-threatening.

          I wouldn’t be surprised if this whole thing ends up being a case of mistaken identity.

          1. Yeah, I don’t mind that part so much. But if she smoked a bowl with him, I doubt she did it with just him. Who else was there?

            And judging from his picture, Lake doesn’t look like much of a pot head to me.

            1. Who else was there?

              Plenty of people I respect enough not to out on Twitter or drag into this just to satisfy the demands of strangers. (Also plenty of Eli’s inner circle, who obviously isn’t going to corroborate).

              fwiw, within two hours of the initial Twitter conversation, a mutual friend–who is a much better friend of Eli’s than mine–emailed both Eli and I to confirm that yes, he had met me many times, the first while smoking a bowl at said friend’s birthday party. (He was trying to broker a peace.) Eli continued to publicly deny ever having met me for hours after that. What am I supposed to do — betray the trust of this friend just to score points on Twitter? People would just accuse me of having photoshopped the email anyway, and even if the friend decided to step up and confirm it was a real email, I would lose someone I genuinely respect as a friend. Again, just to satisfy the demands of internet strangers. So.. yeah, no.

              I could, if somehow legally necessary, 100 percent back all this up. People who know me and know my work believe me. And people who don’t know me should be skeptical, it’s only natural. They just shouldn’t think their skepticism obligates me to treat telling a personal anecdote on Twitter like courtroom testimony or a piece of professional reporting.

              1. They just shouldn’t think their skepticism obligates me to treat telling a personal anecdote on Twitter like courtroom testimony or a piece of professional reporting.

                If only I could apply this standard to the practice of medicine, since medical credentialing obligates me to be a physician 24-7 and I legally liable for any advices I give, i.e. “Curbside or Hallway DXs,” and “Failure to Time, Treat, or Diagnose [generic malady].”. (This includes Reasonoids to whom I have discretely treated, or at least given medical advice when solicited).

                I, nor any medical employer or professional, would never have to worry about malpractice insurance premiums ever again, since we could never be held responsible for any likely unethical actions. That’s a neat trick.

                1. If only I could apply this standard to the practice of medicine, since medical credentialing state cartelization obligates me to be protects my job as a physician 24-7

                  FTFY, slaver.

                  1. FTFY, slaver.

                    Go Heal Thyself.

                    1. Go Heal Thyself.

                      Non-cartel-members aren’t allowed to do that. Might take ur jobz.

                    2. Non-cartel-members aren’t allowed to do that.

                      Sure they can. Try getting your practice underwritten, though. And Sod help you when you either fuck up, or when your patient drags you into court. Caveat Emptor.

                      Might take ur jobz.

                      Come to Odessa. You can have it.

                  2. FTFY, slaver.

                    How is he a slaver for saying that? He literally said what your “fixed” version said with different words and at no point did he endorse statutory accreditation. Just fuck off already you insufferable twat.

                    1. He literally said what your “fixed” version said with different words

                      He’s a member of a state cartel. Which he never admits. He claims to have fled the country because of state interference in his job, but never had a problem with it before the ACA. And so-called anarchists defend him.

                    2. “but never had a problem with it before the ACA”

                      Read that fucking mind.

                    3. He’s a fucking doctor. If you want proper and professional medical treatment, going to a “member of the cartel” is literally the only legally possible option. If you want to be a doctor, being a “member of the cartel” is literally the only legally permissible option.

                      And why do you think he thought everything was perfect before the ACA? Did he tell you this? Or are you operating off of the fact that he didn’t “flee the country” before the ACA?

                      I trust that when you get seriously ill, you’ll go seek treatment from a shaman in the hills rather than do something unbecoming of a True Scotsman like yourself by paying money to someone who was forced to get accreditation in order to do their job.

                    4. He’s a member of a state cartel.

                      Absolutely true. I have yet to find any country in the world that doesn’t require some type of accreditation. It’s like you’ve never heard of liability insurance. Since you are such an ace self-medicator, you’ll be taking only yourself to court, yes?

                      Which he never admits.

                      Repeatedly have, and just did. I dropped AMA membership as soon as I left residency. I ceased accepting CMS as payment in 2011. I currently accept cash, with most cases pre-negotiated, before I even think of operating on a patient in UKR (who had to formally recognise my CV and credentials before I was permitted to contract practice. Their country, their rules).

                      He claims to have fled the country because of state interference in his job, but never had a problem with it before the ACA.

                      I left the USA after the SCOTUS decision, but anticipating its upholding by SCOTUS, I started planning almost a year and half before matriculation. I answer to my patients, the respective boards, my employer, and insurance cos. Not you.

                      And so-called anarchists defend him.

                      They and their kids need medical, too. Just like Oligarchs.

              2. Plenty of people I respect enough not to out on Twitter or drag into this just to satisfy the demands of strangers. (Also plenty of Eli’s inner circle, who obviously isn’t going to corroborate).

                Why do they enjoy that modicum of professional discretion, yet Mr. Lake doesn’t?

                1. “I have a million friends that can totally back me up.” Can you maybe name one or two? “I’m sorry, I can’t do that.”

                  Get help, lady.

                  1. Yes, because me giving you my friends’ nmes would totally satisfy your demands here

              3. Two things

                1) I laugh at dead Arabs, and don’t give a fuck about Israel. Also, there are lots of arabs IN Israel, who consider themselves Israeli. Kind of dumb assertion all the way around from you.

                2) You don’t publicly out people for smoking, full stop. You’re a cunt for doing so.

                1. I don’t know who you are, but you’re going over the line yourself.

                  If you can’t talk about this yourself without going over the line, you really shouldn’t throw stones.

                  1. No, I’m not going over the line at all, if anything I’m being reserved by not unleashing a stream of vitriol.

                    What she did is unacceptable. I don’t care what you think about it.

                    1. More to the point though, it doesn’t matter. She’s known as being constantly on now, and willing to use literally anything she sees or becomes aware of as ammunition in a disagreement.

                      All of her relationships will suffer now as a result, and calling her a cunt will seem like a kindness.

          2. I think in her profession it’s common courtesy not to screw each other over in public like that. Anyone who wants to out themselves can.

            I’s also point out that if both she and Eli Lake were stoned at the time, a) she may not have realized what he was giggling about, and b) stuff that wouldn’t be funny at all suddenly becomes hilarious when people are stoned.

            Regardless, I think outing someone like that is shitty behavior–regardless of whether her other allegations are true.

            . . . not that I’d bet on ENB worrying too much about the precision of her claims.

            1. She said the first time they met, they smoked a bowl together. And that they’ve been in one another’s company a dozen times since then. She didn’t say that she saw him laughing about dead Palis while they were smoking the dank kush.

            2. I think in her profession it’s common courtesy not to screw each other over in public like that. Anyone who wants to out themselves can.

              Peter Thiel disagrees, Ken.

              Best advice I ever got in medical school – NEVER treat, date, or associate with a (or an alleged) journalist. NOTHING is ever, “…off the record.” Nothing. Everything is a potential story, and just try suing them for breach of implied contract or trust. Only reason Thiel managed to be successful is he is a billionaire.

                1. It’s like when you are a public figure your actions have meaning.

                  Indeed. I now sexually identify as a journalist as a “gender construct” – so’s I have now a doubleplus+ good, iron clad protected sphere – so anything I say or write cannot harm me, regardless of what confidences have been and are secured. So, I can now release publicly every medical record of all the Reasonoids, who have publicly commented on these boards, I have treated and fully expect be relieved of all legal and criminal liablility, right Crusty?

                  Where is the discrete, bright line then?

                  1. Where is the discrete, bright line then?

                    There isn’t one. That doesn’t mean it’s right.

                    1. That doesn’t mean it’s right.

                      “Right,” is personal and subjective, Crusty. Which why we have discrete “Bright Lines”. And contracts, both verbal and implied, and written concrete.

                      Even the Crips, Bloods, ISIS, Oligarchs, and Attorneys have “Bright Lines” they don’t cross, as punishment is usually immediate and rather unpleasant (attorneys are the worst – the duration of the process increases the punishment).

              1. “Peter Thiel disagrees, Ken.”

                Peter Thiel isn’t a journalist.

                What happens on poker night stays on poker night.

                No cameras at bachelor/bachelorette parties.

                There’s bro-code.

                When I worked at the hospital, I knew surgeons who got stoned together.

                When a journalist asks you about someone who died, the correct response is, “He was a loyal husband and a fine father”.

                In hockey, there’s something called “The Code”. You learn it playing in the Junior Leagues.

                http://www.bernsteinbooks.com/….._code.aspx

                Every group of people has something called manners. Outing a professional as a pot smoker after smoking out with them socially is bad manners. Regardless of whether what she’s saying is true, she’s eating with her hands, chewing with her mouth open, and picking her nose in front of everybody.

                1. What happens on poker night stays on poker night.

                  Not according to ENB. Perhaps Judge Robert Bork was correct about, “The Right to Privacy,” after all, no?

                  Every group of people has something called manners.

                  In journalism, “manners,” are for losers, since coffee inside scoops are for closers. As Woodward and Bernstein would agree, regardless of what Nixon doth (and did) protest.

                  Thiel is correct, one has exactly the right to the claim to the level of, “privacy,” as one can afford to protect and maintain.

                  1. In journalism, “manners,” are for losers, since coffee inside scoops are for closers. As Woodward and Bernstein would agree, regardless of what Nixon doth (and did) protest.

                    I think those who shape the news should be treated the same as those who make the news. Treat every journalist as though if they are a member of Trump’s administration. If one of Trumps people smoked a bowl and freestyled (ugh, Eli Lake probably does this…ugh…) about anything, I’m sure it would be reported upon.

                    The downside for ENB is that now everything she has done or will do is now newsworthy (in the Twitter-sense) to the enemies she just created, but that’s the bed she made.

                    1. I think those who shape the news should be treated the same as those who make the news. Treat every journalist as though if they are a member of Trump’s administration.

                      The problem with this, Crusty, and Jesse Walker had preemptively posted on the so-called fallacy of, “Where-Were-You-ism,” attempting to equate to, “Whataboutism,” (which is not a fallacy of tu quoque but legit analysis of bias and fraud/hypocrisy detection – i.e. if you criticise, your own garden better be tended in direct proportion as the level of criticism one levels).

                      When it seems that journalists let past administrations get away with murder (figuratively, not literally, for the sake of discourse) just because they are ideologically aligned and personal policy Venn Diagrams overlaps are a plenty, and trash other admins for the same personal and perhaps unflattering things that previous admin personnel did, but where the overlap is rare WRT to the latter admin, one has to say, “Why the double standard?”

                      As doctor, I am bound to provide the same level of professionalism and care to Ariel Castro as I am to Mother Theresa. Why aren’t journalists held to the same or similar standard?

                      Why can’t I treat Castro (or someone just as reprehensible) poorly, and treat those I like and trust much better, just because I like them more?

                    2. As doctor, I am bound to provide the same level of professionalism and care to Ariel Castro as I am to Mother Theresa. Why aren’t journalists held to the same or similar standard?

                      Doctors are weirdos. Journalists could certainly hold themselves to a high standard, and I think they should hold each other to the same standard. But, it is much easier to publicly participate in a massive circle jerk with each other.

                    3. But, it is much easier to publicly participate in a massive circle jerk with each other.

                      You really need to attend doctors and surgical conventions, Monte Crusto….*grins* The term, “weirdos,” when applied to many of my colleagues, is a massive understatement.

                      Besides, medicine is truly a unique profession, and does take a certain personality archetype and psychological skillset requirement to be successful at it, and most people, honestly, don’t possess it. My biggest rival in med school, residency, and professional life makes your….proclivities….look absolutely tame and dull as unrefined flour. Yet, there is no other surgeon on the face of the planet whose medical and surgical opinion I would trust more (except my wife, natch – ducks borshh pan) I would trust. We hate and detest each other, yet respect each others’ skills and opinions more than any other colleague.

                      To wit, if I, as surgeon didn’t have a medical licence, then I would never see the outside of a prison for the all cases I have done, as I would be guilty of felony assault, battery, and attempted murder for each patient. Actually cutting deeply on other human beings, and managing clincal detachment like turning on a switch, is not a common trait and is difficult to learn if not inherent.

                    4. The downside for ENB is that now everything she has done or will do is now newsworthy (in the Twitter-sense) to the enemies she just created, but that’s the bed she made.

                      That’s only a downside if you do things you’re ashamed of

                2. Peter Thiel isn’t a journalist.

                  He didn’t asked to be, literally in a certain context, outed either, Ken. Who asked him for his permission to do so, again?

              2. I think he just meant common courtesy among their own, like cops. Obviously journalists fuck over and lie about everyone else, it’s why they’re one of the most despised professions in the country.

    3. Nobody of any standing to speak of in the business is ever going to corroborate that shit.

      Brown is another Jayson Blair: a pathological liar and serial fabricator of bullshit who gets her jollies doing this sort of thing. I’ve known people like this personally; it’s a kind of sickness. I don’t fully understand the psychology behind it, but I think they enjoy seeing just how far they can take it before people start to catch on. By the way, that cockamamie story she told here several months ago about being detained by the Secret Service, just so that she could call cops a bunch of racist and sexist pigs? It’s a virtual certainty that never happend at all either.

      I just hope that one day she gets the help she clearly needs.

      1. That is pretty harsh. But, it is hard to argue with you. There is no excuse for slandering someone like that without any details or way for the person to defend themselves or for anyone listening to collaborate it. Doing so is utterly irresponsible and unprofessional. The fact that she did do that is just more evidence of how badly reason is in need of some adult supervision.

        1. And to think Reason fired Lucy over a few spelling mistakes.

          1. Yeah, about that HM, I need your opinion on something before I submit it for consideration. I have asked two other Reasonoids, and your wisdom would be appreciated.

        2. Strange, considering Lake did defend himself.

          1. What is strange about Lake defending himself?

            1. There is no excuse for slandering someone like that without any details or way for the person to defend themselves

              1. Lake can’t defend himself other than saying “not true”. Without any details he can’t do anything to disprove the accusation, like come up with another person who was there to dispute her claim or show that he was never there in the first place. All he can do is issue empty denials.

                My point wasn’t that he couldn’t do anything. My point was that he can’t do anything convincing to defend himself other than deny it. I thought it was clear that the statement “he can’t defend himself” meant he couldn’t do anything to dispute her claim not that he couldn’t deny it.

                You really are fucking dense. Dense as a brick. Seriously, do you not understand the issues here?

                1. My point wasn’t that he couldn’t do anything. My point was that he can’t do anything convincing to defend himself other than deny it. I thought it was clear that the statement “he can’t defend himself” meant he couldn’t do anything to dispute her claim not that he couldn’t deny it.

                  The ulitmate, “She said, He said,” no? But since journalists are pure as the driven snow, beyond reproach, and never are consumed with a vindictive streak.

                2. And ENB can’t say anything other than “yes true.”

                  1. (or is choosing not to say anything other than “yes true,” making “not true” a valid and equally strong defense)

                  2. Which is the problem. She puts the accusation out there and there is no way to prove or disprove it. That is not fair to Lake.

                    1. She puts the accusation out there and there is no way to prove or disprove it.

                      Just like a rape accusation. Say, one made by Jackie Coakley, for example. I assume Robby Horses will be on this breach of journalistic ethics like he was on Sabrina Erdley, no?

                  3. She could say when it happened, and name the alleged lobbyists, and for that matter who told the joke he was laughing at. It might give him something concrete to dispute, or at least add context to.

        3. Boy, you aren’t kidding about the need for adult supervision John. There are obviously a few writers here I don’t like or agree with, but even Chapman and Dalmia have never crossed the line into outright slander like this.

          The standards here are starting to go so low they’re almost under the toilet.

        4. Awww, nice to see you guys bonding over this!

      2. Twitter posts probably shouldn’t be held to the same standards, but if she’d written that allegation in an article at the Washington Post, or somewhere, she’d be expected to have a couple of sources to confirm the allegations, right?

        I don’t suppose posting shit like that at Reason would go over well with the bosses either.

        As I’ve said before, at different times, I’ve seen other journalists, public officials, et. al. come after Welch, Sullum, Bailey, and Cathy Young over their supposed lapses of truthiness–and they’ve all come out smelling like roses because they all take pains to be intellectually honest. I don’t always agree with them, but because I’ve seen their claims to intellectual honesty weighed and found to be rock solid, they all get the benefit of the doubt from me.

        ENB isn’t one of those people. Some of her articles have left me shaking my head on how . . . things are being presented.

        1. Twitter posts probably shouldn’t be held to the same standards, but

          let’s hold it to the same standard.

          Anyway, there’s not really a way to “refute” ENB’s allegation. It can only be verified. I doubt it we’ll see anything. It’s already forever ago in twitter time.

          1. Yes, I don’t understand why the medium makes any difference. If I wrote “Ken Shultz raped and murdered a 5 year old girl,” that would be defamation* whether it was published on Twitter, a roadside billboard, or the front page of USA Today.

            *Unless it was true, of course.

            1. Yes, I don’t understand why the medium makes any difference.

              Or the length of time elapsed.

            2. What academics post to Facebook about their cousins, that probably shouldn’t be held to the same standard as what they present to academic journals for publication.

              When a journalist gossips in the ladies room about one of her frenemies, that probably shouldn’t be held to the same standard as what she publishes at the New York Times.

              Surely, there are different ethical standards for various kinds of media, and not everything somebody does in their private life reflects badly on their work. You can probably still be a respected journalist and say shitty things on Twitter.

              When you make allegations against other journalists by way of Twitter, there’s probably a line there somewhere–but I’m not sure you should need two independent sources to verify everything you post on Twitter.

              That’s all I was trying to say.

              1. When a journalist gossips in the ladies room about one of her frenemies, that probably shouldn’t be held to the same standard as what she publishes at the New York Times.

                Why not? If a journalist claims that they are a journalist 24-7, therefore *anything* they print based upon *anything* they see and hear is fair game, then why can’t they be held to that ethical standard 24-7 Ken?

                Seriously, you know, from working in a hospital with very sensitive patient information, regardless of how insignificant or common others may find it, how merciless HIPAA is WRT patient medical and health information (and I have no problems with that).

                I wonder what journalists would do if they were subject to a HIPAA code for the handling of sensitive journalistic information…

                1. “Seriously, you know, from working in a hospital with very sensitive patient information, regardless of how insignificant or common others may find it, how merciless HIPAA is WRT patient medical and health information (and I have no problems with that).”

                  I stopped working in hospitals a long time ago, but when I first came in, I was the release of information guy. That has informed my attitude on all sorts of things.

                  When I’d reject subpoenas for being improperly executed, the sheriffs used to threaten to arrest me all the time. I once told a couple of FBI agents who showed up asking for information to go get a warrant or a subpoena after they implied they might arrest me for obstruction of justice.

                  I’m supposed to feel sorry for Verizon when Homeland Security comes knocking?

                  You look ’em straight in the eye and say, “We don’t care about no stinkin’ badges!”

                  To the point at hand, I’m not defending what ENB wrote. In fact, I’m condemning it. But I’m not sure Twitter speech should be held to the same standards as journalism–unless they’re behaving as journalists on Twitter. ENB may have crossed that line. Regardless of whether she crossed it, there is a line there somewhere. I’m just not sure it’s the same line as the one for journalistic standards.

                  1. To the point at hand, I’m not defending what ENB wrote. In fact, I’m condemning it.

                    This is not in question, Ken, and I commend you for it.

                    But I’m not sure Twitter speech should be held to the same standards as journalism–unless they’re behaving as journalists on Twitter.

                    And you totally missed my point on this, Ken. If ENB claims, like any other credentialed journalist (or ‘uncredentialed’ FTM – like Robby Horse’s stale Sabrina Erdley joke), to be a journalist 24-7 and protected 24-7 extra-Constitutionally since “PRESS BADGE!” and the magic spell of, “I’m a JOURNALIST” invoked at will, then why isn’t that standard invoked with every single thing she, or any other journalist, prints, utters, or otherwise claims?

                    My point is, when do professional, credentialed journalists stop being journalists? When did HIPAA stop applying to you when you were an Hospital Information and Records Specialist (and after, actually – HIPAA, technically, is for life)? Did HIPAA stop at the hospital or clinic door, therefore you could then tell the Feds or other coppers what they wanted to know?

              2. Fair enough, but there is a difference between “shitty things” and defamation. Again, if I wrote on Twitter, or what have you, “Ken is a pig-headed, stubborn asshole,” that’s a shitty thing to say but its not defamatory. As it is a mere opinion, it has no place in an academic journal, but there is no reason it can’t be express via social media. However, if I knowingly libel you by writing “Ken is a murderous pedophile,” that statement alone has the potential to cause great harm to your reputation and livelihood. The potential for defamation wouldn’t change if it were published in a book or if it were posted on a Twitter feed. Regardless of where they might read it, potential clients of yours might not do business with you.

                1. I agree there’s a different standard for saying shitty things about somebody and defamation.

                  And some people might disagree about whether what ENB is alleging is one or the other.

                  In the world of journalism, some employers might not want to employ somebody who is known to have laughed about dying Muslims or Palestinians or Arabs.

                  That could be a serious threat to the livelihood of someone who gets paid to write about the Middle East.

                  I bet Eli Lake would rather everybody forgot about the whole thing.

                  1. I bet Eli Lake would rather everybody forgot about the whole thing.

                    “Loose lips sink ships.” And that ship has sailed, Ken.

            3. *Unless it was true, of course.

              Ahh, and there’s the rub!

              1. You are one sick woman by the way. You know that, right? Of course you do.

                I hope Lake sues your ass even if he wouldn’t have much of a chance to win. I would.

              2. I like how your reaction to this is to come and and double down on cunty.

                I think it’s sinking in now that you realize you fucked up.

                1. I think it’s sinking in now that you realize you fucked up.

                  And what in god’s name other than wishful thinking is giving you that impression?

                  1. “And what in god’s name other than wishful thinking is giving you that impression?”

                    Fuck you cunt, stop spreading people’s business.

              3. No proof that it’s true. And as a certified internet stranger, my decision is that this reflects badly on you. Public shaming without evidence, its the progressive way.

    4. Um, who the fuck is eli lake and why should we care?

      That said, maybe it is just my bias but I really don’t see any of the writers here, especially ones who are usually pretty spot on with their reporting just making claims up from scratch.

      1. Who he is doesn’t really matter and is more or less irrelevant. How would you like it if someone in your profession started saying awful things about you with no evidence to back it up on the public internet where everyone could see it, and you had no real way of proving your innocence so to speak besides simply denying it, and thus half the people reading it would just believe it, and now your personal reputation is in doubt among many people?

        Openly slandering and smearing someone like this without proof is wrong, whether it’s Eli Lake, or me, or you.

        1. Openly slandering and smearing someone like this without proof is wrong, whether it’s Eli Lake, or me, or you.

          [considers source] [huge spit take]

      2. I could totally see the ones we hate doing that. Whether it’s the hate that colors the perception of their ethics, or vice versa, I couldn’t tell you.

  42. Israel has suspended working ties with 12 of the Security Council countries that supported the resolution: Britain, France, Russia, China, Japan, Ukraine, Angola, Egypt, Uruguay, Spain, Senegal and New Zealand.

    Netanyahu ‘told New Zealand backing UN vote would be declaration of war’

    So basically Israel is BDS’ing itself. It’s now illegal to boycott goods from a country that boycotts relations with other democratic countries. It’s the ultimate hypocrisy and discredits every premise of the anti-BDS push. It’s a huge vindication of free speech in this country. (No wonder Boobi was apoplectic.)

  43. “If Trump gets the economy growing, bad things will happen!”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12……html?_r=0

    Subtext:
    “Obama was real smart and stuff to keep the economy screwed!”

    1. That is the dumbest thing I have read in a while. He is right that productivity growth can cause employment disruption. But productivity growth is not all the same and it is not the same as economic growth. Productivity can grow by increasing capital and reducing labor, but it can also grow up using labor more efficiently or by people working more. If demand for a product increases and a company makes part time employees full time, that is an increase in productivity.

      Moreover, productivity increases cause growth not the other way around. And there are a lot of reasons why growth can increase other than increases in productivity. And even if productivity does grow, if economic growth outpaces it, employment still increases. By this jackasses logic, growth causes unemployment. WTF?

      By extension, the more people there are in the United States with the desire to work, the higher the nation’s economic output will be.

      No, the more people in the country with the desire and opportunity to work, the higher the nations output. Having more people with the desire to work doesn’t help if they can’t find a job.

      1. “That is the dumbest thing I have read in a while.”
        I got three or four paragraphs into it (in spite of the source), but that was it. A pathetic “sour grapes” apologia for that lying POS in the WH.

        “Having more people with the desire to work doesn’t help if they can’t find a job.”
        You mean those jobs now missing because of mandated benefits? Higher M/W? The sorts of jobs Obo killed with regulations?
        How can that be? Regulations employ regulators to fix those broken windows!

    2. Well, there you have it. They aren’t as economically ignorant as they claim. They know what Trump plans to do will get the economy going, they just think it is a bad thing. This tells me that lefty economic policies that stifle the economy is deliberate.

      1. That is exactly their goal. All growth does is make people independent and harder to control. It also makes things more unequal which leftists hate. They want us all equally poor and subject to their power.

        1. “All growth does is make people independent and harder to control.”

          Bingo.

          Wealth empowers people. It gives them options. That is what proggies hate. They are evil scum.

  44. President Barack Obama has designated two new national monuments, one in Utah and the other in Nevada.

    You know it would be nice if these states were at least a forewarning before every dolt who runs the government decides to b make some land protected. I get it you own +80% of the land ostensibly under state. But who cares about the Western basin region, they are a solid lock in federal politics for one party or the other.

    1. I think it may even be closer to 90% in Nevada.

  45. They (the Obamas) certainly don’t exude the same sleaziness the Clintons do.

    1. Yeah, it’s a different sort of sleaziness, one that’s just about as arrogant except with more virtue signalling to make it less noticeable.

  46. Forgot to mention this meeting I was in yesterday. We were talking about NavCanada, and I mentioned how I liked that it was a private enterprise. The woman leading the meeting went on and on about how the Canadian ATC space is the model of efficiency and forwarding-thinking tech adoption and the envy of the ATC world.

    I thought that was pretty neat.

  47. All I’m sayin is give peace a chance. I mean, how bad could it be? Don’t knock it till you try it?

  48. President Barack Obama has designated two new national monuments, one in Utah and the other in Nevada.

    The accompanying political cartoon.

    *swoons*

    1. Pat Bagley is a fucking idiot, who always assumed the first and most simple minded conclusion is the correct one.

  49. The SLC Trib story I read on the subject: Obama declares Bears Ears National Monument in southern Utah

    Christy Goldfuss, managing director of the White House Council on Environmental Quality, said there has been broad support, including from Utah’s elected officials, to protect the area, with the only difference the size, scope and means to do so.

    “We are not concerned about a backlash about this designation, given the support for the location and the value and the cultural significance of this place,” Goldfuss said on a conference call with reporters. “Of course, there are always political discussions but on the merits, this is the right thing to do and consistent with our designations across the board.”

    I trust the Trump folk will be using the “right thing to do” defense when they unilaterally make decisions.

    A legal challenge has a good chance, Herbert said, because the Antiquities Act requires creation of monuments as small as possible to protect resources ? and the new monument is larger than Delaware and Rhode Island, and 1 million acres larger than Canyonlands National Park, the largest of Utah’s national parks.

    1. With Bears Ears, Obama has invoked the Antiquities Act at least 27 times, setting aside more land, ocean and historic sites for conservation than any other U.S. president. Not including Bears Ears, 12 Western-state landscape-level monuments have been created in the last five years, covering nearly 4 million acres.

    2. Going through Obama’s executive orders with a meat cleaver is the right thing to do.

  50. So, long story short, un-announced 2020 presidential candidate and VP of the most transparent administration evah, was LYING a couple days ago when he claimed there was no behind-the-scenes effort regarding the UN vote.

    http://freebeacon.com/national…..-n-action/

    1. I love that they got caught out in a blatant lie (“the meeting never occurred”), when its right there on Kerry’s public schedule.

      1. “That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.”

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