Thursday Open Thread

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  1. “A federal court in the Northern District of California entered an order today authorizing the IRS to serve a John Doe summons on Payward Ventures Inc., and Subsidiaries d/b/a Kraken (Kraken) seeking information about U.S. taxpayers who conducted at least the equivalent of $20,000 in transactions in cryptocurrency during the years 2016 to 2020. The IRS is seeking the records of Americans who engaged in business with or through Kraken, a digital currency exchanger headquartered in San Francisco, California.”

    https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/court-authorizes-service-john-doe-summons-seeking-identities-us-taxpayers-who-have-used-1

    The link has attachments about the appropriateness of these John Doe requests.

    I’m definitely not an expert or even a novice on tax law, but this sort of fishing trip of U.S. citizens does make me feel a little uncomfortable.

    1. “seeking information about U.S. taxpayers who conducted at least the equivalent of $20,000 in transactions in cryptocurrency during the years 2016 to 2020.”

      Any US taxpayer? Oh boy. I mean yeah I guess the IRS wants its money but … there aren’t even clear rules for cryptocurrency and taxes! One would think to establish rules before you try to enforce them …

      1. A capital gain is a capital gain, buy low sell high is a gain, buy high sell low is a loss.

        1. Hmmmm… Would that apply to holdings you have in foreign currency as well? That could get complicated really quickly…

          1. Unless the situation has changed substantially, the standard I recall is ‘income from whatever source derived.’

            Cryptocurrency’s apparent allure included (1) secrecy with respect to illicit transactions and (2) avoidance of compliance with tax law.

            I never expected either avenue to be reliable.

          2. Yeah taxes are complicated. Some people or firms trade in foreign currency for a living, they are obligated to pay taxes When they profit. If you have a couple of hundred dollars in Euros left over from your vacation and you somehow managed to make 20 or 30€ when you cashed it in, I don’t think you should be looking over your shoulder.

            1. I was thinking more in terms of Canadian dollars and people who live close to the border never cashing them in, instead saving them for the next trip across the river.

              It used to be a *lot* easier to go into Canada than it is now — back then a Maine driver’s license was honored by the provinces (not just Ottawa) and it was little more than crossing the NH border.

              1. “It used to be a *lot* easier to go into Canada than it is now — back then a Maine driver’s license was honored by the provinces (not just Ottawa) and it was little more than crossing the NH border.”

                Oh, no. Did they put up a wall to keep you undesireables out of their country?

              2. I assume you’re not talking about COVID restrictions, but about the previous border tightening precipitated by 9/11. That resulted from the US’s Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative which upped the document requirements for reentry: a passport if by air, or lesser documents if by land or sea where one such lesser document is an Enhanced Drivers License. Maine isn’t one of the four states that signed on to that program but Vermont did, so moving there is an option. In any case it wasn’t that Canada stopped honoring your driver’s license, except in the sense that they won’t let you in if you don’t have proper documents to get back home again.

    2. This may be a silly question since I know nothing about how cryptocurrency works, but would Kraken even know who among its customers is a US taxpayer?

      1. At some level it bound to assume that all of customers are US taxpayers.

        1. Unless they have reason to believe that one of them is a foreign citizen subject to foreign taxes.

      2. Most exchanges require you provide them that sort of information, and the blockchain is public so all your transactions are public.

        Tbh I don’t quite understand the point, like:

        Step 1: Invent a currency whose only benefit is decentralization
        Step 2: Invent a exchange whose purpose is to centralize said decentralized currency.
        ????
        Profit

        1. Transactions are publicly recorded … but against a random ID.

          Exchanges don’t have a way of knowing who exchanged most of the cryptocurrencies, but there are sophisticated techniques for inferring information based on transaction graphs, etc.

      3. It’s in one of the attachments about what info a user has to provide Kraken.

        I think the basic was Name and DOB but not SSN, maybe a copy of an ID.

    3. I don’t know about US law on the matter, but this is the kind of thing where fishing trips seem justified – it’s more commercial trawling than rod-and-line angling, given the size of the expected catch. Really, it strikes me as akin to doing a tax audit of anyone convicted of fraud, or similar: you know you’re going to find something more often than not.

    4. Maybe I’m being paranoid, but where did we hear “Kraken” before? And is there any connection between the two?

      I vaguely remember what Richard Milhouse Nixon was accused of having tried to do, and, well….

      1. Odysseus is probably not related.

        1. And, anyway, if you sail carefully between Scylla and Charybdis, you need not fear the Kraken.

  2. I’ve been doing a lot more online tutoring ever since the pandemic broke out … and now that it is socially acceptable, I can hold sessions from different states and such (not even for pandemic reasons pure convenience)

    But its just … frustrating at times. If you are in person you can sort of convince an unmotivated student to do stuff, online you just can’t. If someone doesn’t want to learn they won’t learn. And in that case, like sometimes I even feel bad for taking money (but like I am putting in a lot of my time so I take it) but I dont know what to do about that.

    1. That’s why I never got into tutoring in the first place.

      1. Only tutoring I’ve ever done was my brother’s kids, over the phone. (We’re both engineers, but I’m more of a math nerd than him.) Not too bad, since they do both want to learn, I just get a bit frustrated over the degree to which high school had crippled them for college level math. Like teaching them a series of domain specific tricks for solving particular problems, instead of making sure they knew the general techniques. And I’ve been absolutely horrified at some of the stuff they’ve been wasting my son’s time with in math class.

        I’m almost beginning to wonder if elites aren’t deliberately sabotaging the public education system, to preserve advantages for their privately educated children. It would explain a lot.

        1. I don’t think that you have to assume structured malice when pure incompetence explains almost all of the poor instruction.

          1. Does it, though? The poor instruction seems to be all about “Critical Race Theory,” which mainly consists of unfounded accusations that whites collectively are (1) responsible for everything bad that happens to anyone nonwhite and (2) maliciously so. Incompetence can’t explain the spread of that kind of defamation. It requires malice.

            1. If you don’t like it, don’t keep spreading it.

        2. “Like teaching them a series of domain specific tricks for solving particular problems, instead of making sure they knew the general techniques. And I’ve been absolutely horrified at some of the stuff they’ve been wasting my son’s time with in math class.

          I think you will find that is Common Core Math. Common Core — I call it Common Corpse — evolved out of something started by Bill Gates in the 1990s and then got even more messed up when the psychologists got involved with it. The whole thing is bad news, it and the PARCC and the “social/behavioral learning”, and the rest.

          “I’m almost beginning to wonder if elites aren’t deliberately sabotaging the public education system, to preserve advantages for their privately educated children.”

          I’m not sure that the private schools are inherently any better — most of them have jumped onto the Common Corpse bandwagon, along with the related “social justice” one.

          Now as to making it impossible for us to have American-born engineers, scientists and medical doctors — one could argue that, although I think it is more about power and greed. There’s a lot of money to be made in Common Corpse….

          1. Oh, I know it’s common core math. A few years back, the SC legislature outlawed Common Core, and directed a team of educators to create a state alternative.

            Said team went off, had a good laugh, then just copied Common Core.

            1. The problem is the conflict between those who approach education from the perspective of pedagogy and the psychologists.

              Common Corpse comes from the psychologists.

              1. The real problem comes from “education professionals” who look for reasons not to teach instead of focusing on how to teach effectively.
                Back when I was still an undergraduate, I took a course from the school of education on science, math, and computer science education that was full of would-be high-school teachers. It was a 400-level class, and I quickly learned that I knew more science, math, and computer science than anyone else in the room.

          2. “Now as to making it impossible for us to have American-born engineers, scientists and medical doctors”

            It’s not at all impossible to have American-born engineers, scientists, or medical doctors. You just have to find a good engineering school, and wait for them to finish. My daughter married one, who was a year behind her at university. She took her undergraduate degree in a science, then took a gap year to work in STEM promotion for youngsters, and then decided not to apply to medical school after all because she was more interested in public health. So she’s a graduate student in public health instead of chasing a medical doctorate. She may wind up an academic instead of a working physician, but they do nicely on what he earns as a starting engineer.

        3. “I’m almost beginning to wonder if elites aren’t deliberately sabotaging the public education system”

          Why sabotage something that doesn’t work anyway? (Doesn’t work – a lot like most teachers…)

      2. “That’s why I never got into tutoring in the first place.”

        Plus no market for stupid lessons.

  3. Between Farcebook Jail and now the Farcebook Supreme Court, it’s starting to seem like our democratic institutions are starting to be replaced by Farcebook versions of them.

    As bad as Standard Oil and the railroads were, they only subverted democratic institutions, Farcebook & Twatter seek to replace them.

    And they should be shut down for the good of the country.

    1. You sound like a Commie. Nothing to break but our chains, eh, comrade? First, we will seize the means of production…

      1. Facebook and Twitter aren’t means of producing anything but snide remarks and, when they allowed them, memes.

        1. Who knows what they’ll produce once Dr. Ed seizes them?

  4. Minor annoyance: Frameworks are annoying and dumb. Useful, but dumb.

    The whole point of a programming language is to be able to describe incredibly complex tasks with very simple instructions. The genius of a language like C, and its derivatives, is that everything your computer does can be simplified to the following: for, if, while.

    But I feel development, and maybe its not new I’m just new to how its done in industry (as opposed to academia), sort of goes though what I like to call “the minecraft effect.” Minecraft used to have simple tools, Redstone, pistons, repeaters, torches, thats pretty much it … but then they added comparators, locking, sticky pistons, red blocks, etc …

    And you wind up going from simple to complex to complex to complex.

    Like a framework is filled with different structures and tools and complex data sharing systems … but it all seems single purpose! The only reason to use @Output in Angular is to emit an event. You can’t use @output for ordinary data, at least not easily. The constructor is only useful for injecting dependencies.

    It’s not modular and it limits creativity. The way these things are designed is, you call this function to do this, but what “this” is is so incredibly specific and it boxes you in. And then all bootstrap web pages look exactly the same, and all you have done is have some complicated tool churn out the same derivative stuff again and again.

    Everything seems built on poor design. Tbh most of this is about how I approach development, most people see something and think, oh that’s useful, Ill follow the instructions, I see it and throw the instructions out the window and immediately try to break it. Idk if that’s good or bad.

    Anyway, long rant on a blog where no one has any idea what I am talking about.

    1. Frameworks are productive. I remember hand coding CGI interfaces in straight C back in the day, and it took all day to just do the simplest thing, like collect the inputs and store them in a RDBMS.

      And then all that if-then-else branching made the code hard to read and even harder to debug.

      Granted there are frameworks that have their shortcomings, but the idea of going back to the bad old days of one-step-above-assembler is not on my bucket list.

      BTW, I’ve never played minecraft, so the analogy is lost on me.

      1. ” I remember hand coding CGI interfaces in straight C back in the day, and it took all day to just do the simplest thing, like collect the inputs and store them in a RDBMS.”

        Back in the olden times, there was no anything pre-built for accessing data that happened to be stored on a different computing device. Trying to get to files stored remotely was a bit of a nightmare (eventually Novell came along and fixed that problem for DOS, and NFS came along for Unix.) I was too early, and the field I wanted to study (IT) wasn’t recognized as an academic discipline yet.

    2. It allows the compilers to produce faster code without having to be really good at optimizing, I suppose; Writing a bunch of fast special purpose code has to be easier than general purpose optimization. General purpose optimization has to be a really hard task.

      I know processor design has followed this same path, gaining speed by devoting extra gates to alternate logic to optimize particular tasks, instead of speeding up the gates themselves. I guess it lowers the power density on the chip, too, not requiring all the gates to have high duty cycles.

      1. “General purpose optimization has to be a really hard task.”

        It’s also usually an unnecessary task. As Knuth said:

        ““The real problem is that programmers have spent far too much time worrying about efficiency in the wrong places and at the wrong times; premature optimization is the root of all evil (or at least most of it) in programming.”

        Much better to write straightforward, easy to follow code and if it’s slow find the bottlenecks and optimize them. And only them. There’s no point in optimizing the 99% of the code that takes less than 1% of the resources.

        1. The challenge is that “optimizing” can be done for three different purposes, and only two of the three can be chosen. You can optimize for code storage space, or execution time, or development time. We used to be forced to do the first two because of hardware limitations, but now that we mostly aren’t, the programmers just assume there will always be enough memory, and the processor is fast enough, and so they don’t write code looking to save memory, or run fast. And that’s why you see that hourglass slowly rotating.

  5. Liz Cheney writes: “The Republican Party is at a turning point, and Republicans must decide whether we are going to choose truth and fidelity to the Constitution.”
    and

    “The question before us now is whether we will join Trump’s crusade to delegitimize and undo the legal outcome of the 2020 election, with all the consequences that might have. ”

    I’m curious what the thoughtful conservatives who frequent this comments section has to say. Which is the way forward for the GOP?

    Full opinion piece at https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/05/05/liz-cheney-republican-party-turning-point/

    1. Liz Cheney is gone, at least from GOP leadership.

      The issue really is, as part of GOP leadership, you should be bringing the party together. And Cheney isn’t doing that right now, she’s acting as a divider.

      Was some criticism of Trump warranted? Sure. The continual, consistent criticism? It doesn’t help the party. It divides it.

      1. I’m not sure Liz Cheney is the one dividing the party.

        Trump literally spents more time attacking Republicans for insufficient loyalty then he does Democrats. That doesn’t cause divisions?

        1. I’m not saying Trump isn’t doing his part to divide the party. But he’s not an elected official right now. Liz Cheney is. And she’s also doing, frankly, a lot of damage. (Which the WP loves).

          The GOP is a big tent organization, with many different types of people, Leadership should work on bringing them together. Not dividing them.

          1. Ms. Cheney is try to display a principled alternative to Trump’s cult of personality. She has become the Trotsky of the Republican party while D.J. STalin, the opportunist nativist, will be attempting to assassinate her politically at every turn. We’ve seen this dynamic before. only the polarities are reversed.
            She is brave, but Stalin will get her even if she moves to mexico

            1. (Hopefully not with a pick-axe to the skull though)

              1. Leon Trotsky once wrote an advice column called Axe Mr. Trotsky.

            2. She’s gone beyond simply displaying a “principled alternative” to actively being divisive.

              As part of leadership, her job is to bring the party together. You can display alternatives, but you need to do it in a manner that brings voters in…doesn’t drive them out. And she’s not doing that.

              1. Armchair Lawyer calls Ms Cheney “divisive” and says “her job is to bring the party together”…..

                …..as he defends his cult idol – who single-handily lost The GOP control of the Senate thru a long & divisive narcissistic tantrum before the Georgia run-off. It’s not like Trump’s Big Lie on the election is some forgotten miscue from the past. He was still pushing it this week. Every Republican who goes down to Mar-a-Lago to kiss his ass has to support that lie – at least tacitly.

                1. “I’m not saying Trump isn’t doing his part to divide the party. ”

                  If you’re going to ignore my statements, then you’re just being dishonest.

                  1. Trump’s followers are Trump supporters first and Republicans second (and Americans third, at best). That’s what is dividing the party.

                    1. I think that’s wrong. Trump’s followers are Trump supporters first, liberal/Democratic haters second, and Republicans third, at best. (Americans is something way down on the list.)

                    2. Your second and third items are the same thing, said slighly different ways.

                2. “The GOP control of the Senate thru a long & divisive narcissistic tantrum before the Georgia run-off. ”

                  Amen, all the grumbling from Ed and Brett about Ole White Joe is thanks to Trump, lock, stock and barrel.

                  1. To hear Brett tell it, no Republican ever did anything bad.

              2. As part of leadership, her job is to bring the party together.

                Behind a bunch of lies? That’s ridiculous.

                Her job is to advance the ideas and policies of the party, not to help spread Trumpist crap. It’s McCarthy and the like who are not doing their job.

                1. “Behind a bunch of lies? That’s ridiculous.”

                  You’re missing the point. Liz doesn’t have to spout what you call “a bunch of lies”. She doesn’t agree with Trump, and that’s fine. Politicians don’t have to agree with one another, even in the same party. And if you directly asked Liz Cheny what she thinks of Trump, she can say she doesn’t agree with his methods, or style, or whatever.

                  What political leadership does have to do is sometimes, is be political. They have to acknowledge there are people in the party they don’t agree with, but that they need to work with regardless. And repeatedly, pointedly criticizing someone they need to work with, over and over and over again…isn’t what leadership does. It burns bridges. It creates bad feelings. It creates divides, it doesn’t bring together factions.

                  What Liz Cheney should’ve done is criticized Trump….then let it go silent. Yes, she doesn’t like him. But she doesn’t need to preach it from the top of the world. But since she can’t let it go, since she feels the need to repeatedly, severely criticize one of her own party members….she may not be appropriate for leadership.

                  1. “What political leadership does have to do is sometimes, is be political. They have to acknowledge there are people in the party they don’t agree with, but that they need to work with regardless. And repeatedly, pointedly criticizing someone they need to work with, over and over and over again…isn’t what leadership does. It burns bridges. It creates bad feelings. It creates divides, it doesn’t bring together factions. ”

                    Was this advice directed at the current leader of the GOP (ie Donald Trump) ? Or are you being sarcastic?

                    1. I’ll repeat what I said before.

                      “I’m not saying Trump isn’t doing his part to divide the party.”

                  2. Rep. Cheney is consciously disregarding the 11th commandment; that is the upshot of what you are saying. You cannot do that, and reasonably expect to remain in a leadership role. I’d agree with that. Team R of WY can decide her ultimate political fate in 2022.

                    1. The question is whether she should violate the 11th commandment because if she doesn’t, she is endorsing Trump’s attempts to steal the election. That is, there comes a point where party loyalty has to give way to country loyalty.

                    2. Trump is not big on that Commandment either, and seems to be doing fine.

                    3. Josh R…with respect, you don’t get to define/change the question.
                      Sarcastr0…Is he really doing fine? He is not in the White House.

                    4. The 11th Commandment is very much an internal to GOP thing, and by that metric Trump is doing cult of personality levels of well.

                      The idea that the concept requires enthusiastically repeating lies is, I think, not as the (already dodgy concept) was intended.

                  3. “acknowledge there are people in the party they don’t agree with”

                    the issue with Trump is not agreeing or disagreeing it is “silence or get out of the way.”

                  4. The question is whether her responsibility to the party exists in the future, or is entirely located in the present.

                  5. “Politicians don’t have to agree with one another, even in the same party. And if you directly asked Liz Cheny what she thinks of Trump, she can say she doesn’t agree with his methods, or style, or whatever.”

                    So you guys are discarding Reagan’s 11th Commandment?

              3. As part of leadership, her job is to bring the party together.

                Wrong. Her job is to maximize the party’s influence. Bringing together a shrinking, increasingly delusional group of cult-followers doesn’t help the party. What helps the party is going back to appealing to sensibilities that appeal to a large group of people. That includes being honest about objective facts, staying true to principles of small government and responsibility, and so on.

                The more republicans reject people like Cheney, the more it truly does resemble a cult, and the more you’ll never appeal to new voters and never get back former republicans who left over this insanity.

            3. If Trump were Stalin, even remotely, people would be a lot more scared about attacking him. As it is, attacking him is just something you do if you want the MSM to give you “strange new respect”.

              1. It’s a litmus test. Do you believe in objective reality? Then you can’t be a Republican, sorry.

          2. The GOP is a big tent? Are you sure about that, seems like the only real issue is your loyalty to the former President. No big ideas.

            1. Absolutely the GOP is big tent.

              One of the issues of our time is the realignment of the parties. Currently, the working class is moving, en masse, towards the GOP. Trump is part of the reason for that. That movement is critical towards Pennsylvania, Ohio, Wisconsin, Michigan, and other supposed “blue wall” states. Especially as the Democrats abandon union labor (outside the teacher’s unions).

              Keeping those voters with the rest of the GOP voters, as well as expanding is important.

              1. Armchair Lawyer : Currently, the working class is moving, en masse, towards the GOP

                Uh huh. Why do I suspect black people don’t count as “working class” in that faux equation. Of course if you meant to say the White Evangelical Southern Male Working Class, then you’re golden. You might want to work on winning the popular vote in a U.S. presidential election just once (without a popular war behind ya) before you get too complacent.

                1. In fact, African Americans and Latinos have been moving towards Trump and the GOP as well, because of the promotion of working class values.

                  Zapata County in Texas is an illustrative example. Demographically, the county is 84% Latino. In 2020, Trump won it, due to the support of working class people.

                  https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-54972389

                  1. Trump won that county due to the support of Catholics for his anti-abortion stance, ffs.

                    1. It’s literally in the article you linked.

                    2. “”He really delivered on his anti-globalisation policy,” he says. “Neoliberal expansion has really hurt both Mexico and the US, and when you have family that live there, and you can see how it’s hurt people living, their jobs, their wages, it really has increased the narco-war, and this is one of the things Trump came in saying – ‘hey, we’re going to tear apart these trade deals’ – and then he actually did it. That was for me the first sign that he actually meant some of the things he was saying.”

                      Mokarzel’s wife Lily, a teacher, first-generation Mexican-American and also a Trump supporter, adds that she voted for him for economic reasons – “our salaries have increased” – and because she likes his “genuine self”, despite colleagues and her union supporting Biden.”

                    3. And????

                      There is a silent majority of Blacks & Latinos who are very religious.

                    4. “There is a silent majority of Blacks & Latinos who are very religious.”

                      And your premise is that this makes them stupid? Unable to see the Republicans’ disdain for them?

                  2. Why did you just quote some other bits? Was it too long for you to read any further?

                    1. Because it proved your statement incorrect. Your reading comprehension failed you.

                    2. It doesn’t contradict what I said at all. The article is quite clear, despite your attempts to dissemble.

                  3. Armchair Lawyer : In fact, African Americans and Latinos have been moving towards Trump

                    2016 : Trump loses the black vote by 94%
                    2021 : Trump loses the black vote by 92%

                    Four-score more years of elections and he’ll have that vote nailed down! Of course he’ll be over 150 years old, but he already seemed addled & senile during his presidency, so what difference will that make. OTOH, by then there won’t be a single woman or suburban voter going for the GOP, but who needs to win a majority of voters anyway? That’s so old-school…..

                    1. It was quite a bit more than that actually.

                      African Americans moved 5-6 points towards Trump. Hispanics 4-5 points. Asians 7 points.

                      In fact, the reason Biden won was because he got more support among White Men. He lost voting percentage in every minority category.

                      https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-54972389

                    2. If you guys can add repeal of women’s suffrage to your ongoing voter suppression, you might have a chance of winning an election by being more popular with voters than the other guy is/was.

            2. For closer to an all white pup tent

          3. Should the GOP include people who try to steal an election, and provoke an insurrection in the process, under its tent?

            1. Should Democrats include people who provoke race riots that destroy minority areas?

              1. If the riot was provoked by a call for justice without encouraging violence, yes. If instead the provocation encouraged a riot, then no.

                In contrast to a call for racial justice, Trump’s underlying complaint – the election was stolen from him – is illegitimate. So, the answer ought to be “no” whether or not Trump encouraged an insurrection.

                All that being said, you missed my point. Cheney is objecting to Trump trying to steal an election and provoke an insurrection in the process. Ousting her in the name of party unity legitimizes the attempted steal and provocation. McCarthy and Scalise are endorsing Trump’s steal.

                1. Oooohh…

                  So “March peacefully” is a call for violence.

                  But “stay on the street” and “get more confrontational” isn’t encouraging violence.

                  I love the double standards here….

                  1. You did not address my arguments 1) about the difference in the underlying complaints nor 2) that you missed my point.

                  2. Oh sure…let’s address your arguments, piece by piece.

                    Point 1:
                    Is it “illegitimate” to challenge the results of an election? If you challenge the results of an election, should you be ejected from your party?

                    Yes or no.

                    1. No, but he wasn’t legitimately challenging the results of the election. He was categorically claiming the election was stolen from him because of massive fraud.

                      But no, I am not going to debate whether or not Trump tried to steal the election with you. I am merely pointing out this disagreement is what Cheney versus her detractors is about (it’s not about GOP unity). She thinks Trump attempted a steal and her detractors disagree (or agree, but are too afraid of the GOP rank and file to say so).

                    2. Ah….

                      So it IS legitimate to challenge the results of an election. Of COURSE you needed to put a “but”….which is basically “Because Trump”.

                      Now Democratic Hero Stacey Abrams says the election for Governor in 2018 “was not fairly conducted” and refused to concede. Yet she’s not condemned by the Democratic Party. Instead, she’s given the role of response to the SOTU address in 2019 and keynote addresses at the DNC in 2020.

                      What’s the difference between the two? Well…Trump is Trump.

                      Now if the number 3 in the Democratic Caucus couldn’t shut up, for months, about how Abrams should stop saying the election “wasn’t fair” and it was driving a divide in the party …that #3 might lose her leadership position too.

                    3. What’s the difference between the two? Well…Trump is Trump.

                      I don’t think much of Abrams, but the difference between the two is that Abrams was just being whiny. She was not claiming that Kemp was not actually the governor. She was not filing legally and factually frivolous suits to overturn the election. And, of course, she was not inciting people to riot to keep him from becoming governor.

                    4. I agree with Nieporent, but add Abrams is like the people who claim the 2020 election result is in doubt because the rules were unlawfully changed. It’s not a an illegitimate claim, but it needed to be resolved before the election and even now needs to be backed up with solid math.

                    5. “He was categorically claiming the election was stolen from him because of massive fraud.”
                      Only someone who is 100% delusional could say that.

                    6. The “Justice” Department and the FBI have done nothing about the 2020 Presidential Election Voter Fraud, the biggest SCAM in our nation’s history, despite overwhelming evidence.

                      blockquote>fake signatures, illegal immigrant voters, banned Republican vote watchers, MORE VOTES THAN ACTUAL VOTERS (check out Detroit & Philadelphia), and much more. The numbers are far greater than what is necessary to win the individual swing states, and cannot even be contested.

                      – Trump tweets

                    7. “Only someone who is 100% delusional could say that.”

                      But that’s not what the delusional people have been saying.

                    8. “Is it ‘illegitimate’ to challenge the results of an election?”

                      Depends on how you go about it.

                2. How do you react to chants of “No justice; No peace!” ?
                  It sounds like a threat to a lot of people.

                  1. Try “know justice, know peace” instead

              2. This is a complete non-sequitur. If the democrats are moving left and embracing unpopular positions, it’s enabled by Trump and his merry band of sycophants have enabled to do so without the threat of losing the majority.

                If republicans wanted to stop woke activism, they’d adopt widely popular positions, not excise those who dare challenge the cult leader.

                1. “IF” is a powerful word.

          4. Which GOP leadership is doing by… ousting Cheney and installing a Trump stooge in her place.

            “Big tent.”

            1. The ironic thing is that Stefanik is much more moderate than Cheney. If one focuses on the issues Trumpkins say they care about, Cheney is closer to Trump than Stefanik is. It’s only on the issue of personal fealty to Trump that Cheney falls short and Stefanik shines.

              1. Turns out that’s the one issue Trump actually cares about.

          5. “The GOP is a big tent organization, with many different types of people,”

            The poorly educated.

            The gay-bashers.

            The superstitious.

            The racists.

            The xenophobes.

            The backwater inhabitants.

            The Muslim-haters.

            The White nationalists.

            The gun absolutists.

            The anti-abortion absolutists.

            The White supremacists.

            The misogynists.

            The insurrectionists.

            About 35 percent of the population, obsolete misfits all.

          6. “I’m not saying Trump isn’t doing his part to divide the party. But he’s not an elected official right now. Liz Cheney […]”

            As an elected official, Ms. Cheney’s first duty isn’t to the Republican Party. It’s to the people of the district/state that elected her.

        2. Trump is typically attacking outlier Republicans. Sometimes just ‘Republicans’ who aren’t really anymore, like the “Lincoln” project.

          Cheney is typically attacking mainstream Republicans.

          Maybe she wishes the outliers were the mainstream, and the mainstream were the outliers, but that’s the truth of it. He’s in the tent pissing out, and she’s outside the tent pissing in.

          1. “Cheney is typically attacking mainstream Republicans.”
            That is because Trump has transformed what had been the party mainstream into nativist know-nothings bent are rendering the R’s into a permanent minority party.

            With every EIP3 payment of $2800, Ole White Joe is chipping away at what you call the mainstream to yield a permanently bitter core.

            1. And EIP payment doesn’t make up for losing your union job, or other working class job, as Ol’ White Joe outsources your work for “Green Jobs” or regulatory reasons.

              1. Republicans – pro-union all the way.

                About what I’d expect of you, A.L.

                1. You’d be surprised Bernard. Here’s some polling data about how Union Members vote.

                  If you’re an actual union member, you’re more likely to be a Strong Republican than a Strong Democrat. If you add together all the leaners, it’s only a 43-49 split.

                  Union retirees are more pro-Democrat. But among today’s union members? There’s a lot of GOP voters. For good reason.

                  https://www.thestrikewave.com/original-content/complicated-politics-of-union-members

                  1. But those stats don’t mean the Republican Party is pro-union. It’s plainly not. Just like the right-wingers here are not.

                    1. There’s a subtle but important difference here Bernard,

                      The Democrats may be “pro-union.” The GOP is “pro union EMPLOYEE.” The two aren’t the same.

                      You see the “Union” as epitimized by Union leadership has been selling its employees down the river. Backing Democrats who embrace policies which reduce the number of union jobs. Manufacturing, mining, construction, energy, and more. The leadership still gets its fat paycheck. The Democrats still get their donations. But the union jobs….well, they go away.

                      The union EMPLOYEES get this…that’s why they’ve started voting GOP in increasing numbers. Because they like their jobs. And they want to keep them. And if the Democrats embrace policies and regulations designed to eliminate those jobs….well, the employees know who really has their working class backs. The GOP.

                    2. “The GOP is “pro union EMPLOYEE.” The two aren’t the same.”

                      You’re confusing “what they are” and “what they pretend to be”.

                  2. The only reason some union member voted for Trump is because he scared them into believing that people from south of the border wer coming to take their jobs.
                    I have many Hispanics working on extended projects for me. I know why these union workers are scared. Those immigrants work too damned hard.

                    1. Don’t forget that Trump was uniquely qualified because he was going to be bringing all the deals. Not bragging about the Foxconn factory any more, is he?

            2. “Know-nothings”? Here is what I know:
              1. Jobs have been moving offshore and away from the US for decades. Middle class Americans felt the brunt of that directly.
              2. Illegal immigrants are moving here in droves, thanks to the Dems, and the complacency of the GOP. Poorer and middle class Americans are the most affected.
              3. The establishment of both parties continues to get richer and powerful. They only represent the poor and the rich. Middle class Americans are most affected.

              These things are what I know, and are unarguable. Liz Cheney is the poster girl for the policies described above. She’s part of the apparatus that wants to mainstream the rich and poor at the expense of the middle class; to mainstream the middle class out.

              If you’d get out of your libertarian / liberal / establishment bubble once in a while, maybe you’d see the damage the Liz Cheneys of the world are doing.

              1. Here is what I know:
                1. Jobs have been moving offshore and away from the US for decades.

                As the old saying goes, it isn’t the things that one doesn’t know that are a problem; it’s the things that one knows that aren’t so.

            3. “permanent minority party”

              There is no such creature. The worm always turns.

              GOP only needs 6 or 7 votes to take back the House. 50 senate seats, majority of governors and state legislatures.

              1. Bob from Ohio: “permanent minority party” – There is no such creature.

                So, the Libertarian party, Constitution party, Green party, etc etc are mythical?

                Granted, the Federalist and Whig parties did not become “permanent minority” because they disbanded, but major parties have become permanently not-major before.

                Will the pendulum swing back to the GOP? That would be the smart way to bet. It would also be the smart way to bet to wager that it happens after it has jettisoned a certain major figure.

                1. “So, the Libertarian party, Constitution party, Green party, etc etc are mythical?”

                  Yes, pretty much.

                  “major parties have become permanently not-major before”

                  We have an elaborate legal structure now that says that will not happen again. Every state has laws that favor the two parties.

                  GOP is today in much better shape in DC than after 2008 yet they bounced back in 2010.

                  1. “GOP is today in much better shape in DC than after 2008 yet they bounced back in 2010.”

                    They came back after Nixon, too. And after Bush and another Cheney mis-led us into a disastrous war. This next Reich will be the big one for sure!

              2. “‘permanent minority party’

                There is no such creature. The worm always turns.”

                Actually, Bob, there’s no shortage of permanent minority parties. They manage to maintain ballot access by just reaching the threshold vote totals.

                Then again, you could just consult the Whigs.

          2. “Cheney is typically attacking mainstream Republicans.”

            Republicans get mad when you point out that their mainstream consists of nutters.

      2. Is Liz Cheney really a divider? It seems like Liz Cheney is a real conservative and loyal to Republican ideas. Where has Rep. Cheney been different from the Republican Party other than here failure to support the former President. Cheney has a better conservative voting record than her likely replacement.
        Liz Cheney is not dividing the party, she is holding a line. How many of those criticizing the former President on January 6th and the week after have now caved? I don’t see a divider, I see a leader.

        1. “Is Liz Cheney really a divider?”

          She’s acting like one. Continual attacks on voters which make up a large chunk of GOP voters is designed to drive them away.

          1. It reminds me of what the Labour party here had to do after getting rid of Corbyn and his cronies. Unite 80% of the party by kicking out the 20% who should never have been there in the first place – and incidentally make the party acceptable again to normal voters rather than party members.

            1. The US isn’t the UK. There are no coalition governments.

              Kicking out 20% of your voters is how you lose elections.

              1. 20% of members, versus 20% of the whole country? It isn’t really a difficult equation.

                I note that Labour have not been part of a coalition government in the UK since the Second World War.

                On the other hand, while checking that I discovered this:

              2. “Kicking out 20% of your voters is how you lose elections.”

                Depends on your registration edge.

          2. Again I don’t believe that Liz Cheney ever attacked the voters. She has criticized the former President and that is all.

            1. You may not believe it, but they do.

              1. What you mean is, she’s a divider, because people like you constantly describe her as one.

              2. “You may not believe it, but they do.”

                They’ve been wrong before, and seem to prefer being wrong. so who cares what they think?

            2. ” She has criticized the former President and that is all.”

              She’ s trying to make them choose between her and Trump. She is disrespecting Trump supporters, who make up a large majority of the GOP.

              1. It’s funny, normally it’s a demagogue politician persuading voters of a Big Lie, but the way you’re describing it, it’s demagogue voters demanding politicians believe their Big Lie. (After they decided to believe a demagogue politician about it first, of course.)

                1. “(After they decided to believe a demagogue politician about it first, of course.)”

                  Yes, Trump persuaded them but Cheney is not going to un-persuad them, she is just going to get trampled.

                  Maybe Ted Sorenson’s grandchild can write a book about her courage.

                  1. There have been lots of books written about people being persuaded by demagogues, and the cowardly politicians who enabled the demagogue. You could build a whole library just dealing with Ancient Rome.

          3. Continual attacks on voters which make up a large chunk of GOP voters is designed to drive them away.

            What are these “continual attacks?”

            She is simply telling people the truth – Trump lost the election, and it’s foolish and counterproductive – for the GOP – to pretend otherwise.

            I suppose if you have convinced yourself of a bunch of nonsense you might feel attacked when someone points that out to you, but you really shouldn’t.

            1. Telling them a truth they do not relish counts as an attack.
              somehow.

          4. “She’s acting like one. Continual attacks on voters which make up a large chunk of GOP voters”

            It would be so helpful to the Republican cause it she would be quiet about the ‘stolen election’ fraudsters, the racists, the birthers, the gay-bashers, the immigrant-hating authoritarians, the misogynists, the Muslim-haters, the QAnon kooks . . .

          5. AL.
            Sometimes you have to shovel the shit out of the barn before it can get to smell better

            1. Accomplished on 1/20.

          6. ” Continual attacks on voters which make up a large chunk of GOP voters is designed to drive them away.”

            If they’re that easy to drive away, maybe they weren’t really yours in the first place.

        2. “she is holding a line.

          Like the Roman generals at Cannae or Paulus at Stalingrad.

          “I see a leader.”

          left wing support is the last thing she needs

          1. She might need the ones who live in her district.

    2. Tbh, I dont know.

      I grew up in a majority black town in NJ. My conservatism is mostly formed from there, just seeing people interact and how I was generally treated there.

      I’ve went to college in Indiana and I met some of the conservatives here and … there is a lot I disagree with for them. Like for example I dont understand the gun obsession. I just don’t. And I’m fairly religious but … not in the way some people are in Indiana.

      And I would like to claim people like me, a minority who rejects the current orthodoxy and has a unique perspective on things, right or wrong, is the future of the GOP and some (not all!) of the people I met out in Indiana aren’t.

      But I dont think that’s true. And everytime I hear someone cite the daily wire I get more and more depressed that it isn’t true.

      Doesn’t mean I dont have beliefs worth fighting for.

      1. Thoughtfully put.

        I expect that you and I would disagree about 90% of social issues. But I totally respect where you’re coming from. I consider myself to be part of the non-idiot-wing of the Republican party, and it’s always nice to occasionally be reminded that I’m not alone in the desert.

        1. ” I consider myself to be part of the non-idiot-wing of the Republican party”

          Do they let you pet the unicorns?

    3. If your perspective on, the way you frame, matters internal to the GOP is basically indistinguishable from the standard Democratic party take on the GOP, then maybe you’re in the wrong party?

      She is very conspicuously accepting as accurate the Democratic party’s position on the election, the Democratic party’s characterization of everything Trump. Maybe that could be a reasonable ending point for a Republican to arrive at, after extensive investigation. Somewhere you’d reluctantly arrive. It isn’t a reasonable starting point.

      Not if you’re going to be a Republican leader.

      1. “She is very conspicuously accepting as accurate the Democratic party’s position on the election, the Democratic party’s characterization of everything Trump. “

        I view Trump as similar to Franklin Roosevelt — both took over an aged political party and realigned both in the process. People tend to forget that all the Jacksonian Democrats became Republicans in the 1930s.

        1. ‘ took over an aged political party and realigned [it] in the process.’

          More accurately he conducted purges. He is more akin to Stalin than to FDR

          1. “Stalin”. Who did Trump have killed for having the wrong views?

            Hyperbole much?

            1. I-C .
              I am not speaking about the physical mechanics of elimination but rather the ideological analog with Trotsky. Had you been paying attention and known about he ideological structure of that period you might understand

              1. Then you’d find an example who wasn’t a mass murdering dictator.

                  1. Thanks for proving the point. You people are nuts if you think Trump is a mass murdering dictator.

                    1. Nige clearly gave Trump as an example of someone who, while evil, was NOT a mass murderer.

                      (Trump’s incompetence did result in countless unnecessary deaths from Covid. How many of the 500,000 would have been saved under a President Rubio, or President Romney, or President Pence? Maybe only 100,000 would have been save. Or, maybe 499,000…if Trump’s prior comment about deaths being limited to 1,000 were believable. But being responsible for someone’s death is different than actually going out and pulling the trigger himself. So, I join you in absolutely rejecting “mass murderer” as an accurate description of Trump.)

                    2. Trump is not a mass-murdering dictator.

                      He is a vainglorious, bigoted, vulgar, lying, inept, incurious, selfish, delusional, silver-spooned grifter and entertainer. The people who support him are our society’s obsolete losers.

                    3. I_C,
                      Only YOU used the words mass-murdering dictator conjoined with Trump.
                      What I said is that he is a opportunistic figure who demands unflagging subservience to his cult of personality, just like Stalin.
                      And he is ruthless about purging those who don’t grovel to him, just like Stalin.
                      See how that works?

                  2. Remove the mas murdering feature and look at the mentality of the two men. Trump is a close parallel to Stalin.

                1. No, I’d find the correct ideological counterpart that represents the point being made.

                  If you don’t like the fact that Trump has promoted a cult of personality a la Stalin, too bad. It is just what he has done. If you don’t like that he has tried to purge all opposition to himself from the R party, too bad. That is what he has done. If you don’t like that he has bred and attitude of contempt for other points of view in the party, just like Stalin, too bad. That is what he did. If you don’t like that he is promoting his henchmen to politically assassinate his “arch -enemy,” Liz Cheney as Stalin did with (though with more prejudice) toward Trotsky, too bad. That is what he is trying to do.
                  He is a malignancy in the republican party working ceaselessly to make it into a permanent minority of the bitter.

          2. FDR purged Congress in the 1934 election.

        2. People tend to forget that all the Jacksonian Democrats became Republicans in the 1930s.

          It’s yet another patented Dr. Ed, “People don’t realize/forget/etc. something I just made up.”

      2. Brett Bellmore : She is very conspicuously accepting as accurate the Democratic party’s position on the election

        Translation : She’s speaking the truth.

        1. Uh, no, she isn’t. And if it were the truth, progressives wouldn’t be bending backwards to force people to agree with them on this point, especially since it’s supposedly correct on it’s merits.

          For a bunch of people who are sure they’re right, you sure aren’t acting as though you’re right. Otherwise why fight anyone who doesn’t agree with you on the election?

          1. I Callahan : For a bunch of people who are sure they’re right, you sure aren’t acting as though you’re right.

            I’m acting as though every single fact supports my position. You’re acting as though facts are irrelevant – thus all your bobbing, weaving, and weaseling.

            You never had a single thing to support your charge of fraud and you don’t have a single thing now. Eight months before the election Trump said he’d claim fraud if he lost. Six months before the election Trump said he’d claim fraud if he lost. On the eve of the election Trump said he’d claim fraud if he lost.

            Then the votes were counted and he said ……. fraud. Like little wind-up dolls, all you cultist immediately acted with Shock! Horror! Dismay! Rage!

            How in the world can anyone be so stupidly gullible ?!? Don’t you have any self-respect left?

            1. I’m acting as though every single fact supports my position.

              So by “every single fact” you really just mean the “facts” that y’all “check” and miraculously find to support you every single time? Or are we back to the “if an Approved Media Source didn’t report it, it didn’t happen” game? Please do explain.

              1. This right here is why I can no longer stand republicans and can’t bother to have a conversation with them.

                When someone’s world is so upside down that you no longer can grasp basic ideas of objective facts, then there’s really no point in trying to debate issues with them.

                Sorry, but 2+2=4, no matter how many times Trump tells you it’s 5, how many Fox News segments bemoan new math, no matter how many Antifa/BLM rallies says it’s 4, and no matter how many opportunists tell you that you should think it’s 5 or claim they are just asking questions of whether it really is 4.

                1. Sorry, but 2+2=4

                  I hate to be the one to break it to you, but you crazies are the ones who have abandoned objective math.

                2. Give me one example of Trump telling me something, and me believing it, and you knowing WITHOUT QUESTION that both Trump and I are wrong. Just one example.

                  1. This is a dumb game because you, like all conspiracy theorists, will try to flip the burden of proof. It will turn into the “prove this rock doesn’t scare away tigers” game. I also don’t know what you personally believe, and it’s easy to try to claim nuance when you get called out for no evidence.

                    But, assuming you’re like most his supporters, you could go down a list of them, starting with his claim that he won the election, to his denials about the calls with the Ukranian president, to pretty much anything he ever said regarding Covid. You can Google your own list of his lies and decide which ones you believe.

              2. Nope:

                Every. Single. Fact.

                As in: Every certification, every recount, every audit, every court challenge, every discredited allegation of fraud that couldn’t stand a moment’s scrutiny.

                Also: Every member of the Right’s junk media that fell over themselves retracting and apologizing the second they faced defending their bullshit in civil court. That includes a sizable group including Newsmax, American Thinker, OAN and Fox – with the latter running multiple segments refuting their own “reporting”. Trump’s election lies didn’t seem to do Lou Dobbs any good, did they?

                Those are your “approved media sources”, LoB, and they humiliated themselves peddling Trump’s lying garbage.

                1. Right. And don’t forget Powell’s defense to the libel suit – “Nobody sane would ever believe all those claims I was making.” Or Rudy’s scurrying away in his PA lawsuit when the judge asked if he was claiming fraud.

                2. As in: Every certification, every recount, every audit, every court challenge, every discredited allegation of fraud that couldn’t stand a moment’s scrutiny.

                  Ah, so actually a fairly narrow list of things, most of which aren’t even “facts” and the rest of which were circle-jerk “discredited” as I mentioned. I’m very glad we cleared that up.

                  1. Delusional, disaffected, downscale right-wing bigots are among my favorite culture war casualties . . . and the core of the Volokh Conspiracy’s following.

              3. Brian,
                There is no independently substantiated evidence of any fraud large enought to have changed the fact that Trump lost AND he lost big time.

          2. ‘If I’m lying, why do you keep telling me to stop lying so much?’

            1. thread-winner

          3. How do you distinguish this post from what a Flat Earther might say? “If the Earth were really round, why would you be bending over backwards trying to prove it?”

            1. That’s not an argument. There are myriad ways of proving the world is not flat. Now if you were blocking me from seeing that (by not allowing me to fly around the world, for instance), and just demanding that I agree with you without question, you’d have a fair argument.

              1. No one is blocking you from seeing anything. We’re trying to help you get into a plane and fly around the world to see for yourself and you’re saying your Aunt Betty says planes can’t fly so obviously we’re lying.

        2. Well, of course a Democrat is going to think those identical.

          But, like I wrote, it’s acceptable for a Republican leader to end up agreeing with Democrats about something, persuaded by evidence, but Cheney has lately been starting out agreeing with Democrats, not reluctantly being argued around to it.

          And often about things where the Democrats were factually wrong, like impeaching Trump on the basis of fake news stories.

          1. Cheney has lately been starting out agreeing with Democrats, not reluctantly being argued around to it.

            No she hasn’t. Do you honestly think there is not strong – overwhelming – evidence Biden won? Did the elction not happen? Was it not supervised – in many cases by Republican officials? Were there no recounts. Do you think there is a shred – maybe bamboo shred – of evidence of massive fraud?

            The assumption you keep pushing is that none of that happened – no procedures, no checks, no nothing, just a vague claim that Biden won, so now is the time to count and verify, etc. That’s crap, Brett. Utter Trumpist crap. It ignores all the work of the election, the lawsuits, and everything else. If there had been ten recounts yu’d be saying the same thing.

            So now you have some clowns in AZ who may decide it’s all wrong because they don’t like the way the ballots were folded or something, who knows what they will come up with.

            Here’s the thing: You, and A.L., and the 70% of Republicans who think Trump won, and the leaders who go along, are a threat to American democracy. What’s worse is some – including probably you – know better, but just can’t face it. It’s repugnant, loathesome, behavior.

          2. Brett Bellmore : “…like impeaching Trump on the basis of fake news stories”

            I know this sort of talk is just reflex to you, with no thought and zero concern for the truth, but what on earth do you mean?

            Impeachment One was based on a plus-year long campaign to illicit election help from the Ukrainian government, starting with the promise of campaign help for the current leader’s predecessor, then continuing with bargaining over the level of U.S. representation at the current leader’s inauguration. In both cases the price was Biden dirt.

            The next attempt to trade America’s favor for Trump’s personal benefit came by offering a summit meeting of the two country’s leaders. Zelensky’s chief-of-staff was told that would happen only if the Ukrainian leader promised (in writing) he’d publicly announce a Biden investigation. This was when Bolton stormed from the meeting saying he wouldn’t be part of any “drug deal”

            The final attempt to trade America’s foreign policy favor for Trump’s private gain came with the infamous phone call, dangling military assistance in exchange for public relations help against the election opponent Trump feared the worst.

            In these efforts (and more), Trump channeled U.S. foreign policy thru his addled & corrupt personal attorney and two low-grade crook henchmen, Lev Parnas & Igor Fruman. But that’s the kind of thing you do when running a criminal enterprise, right?

            Impeachment Two came after a two month campaign to subvert a United States election. This included continual incendiary lying, attempts to pressure or subvert state election officials, an attempt to fabricate a non-existent DOJ investigation to pressure Georgia to stop certification, the crudest possible demand that state fabricate votes to help Trump (recorded live), demands the Vice President block certification without the slightest constitutional basis, and (finally) weeks of apocalyptic agitprop that caused the 06Jan riots.

            You can claim the long, sleazy & reprehensible record in these cases didn’t warrant impeachment. After all, that’s what cultists do, excuse & exalt everything Dear Leader does. But man-up and be honest about it. Don’t pretend this was ever about “fake news stories”

            1. “elicit” not “illicit” – though it was illicit.
              (we need an edit function)

          3. ” Cheney has lately been starting out agreeing with Democrats”
            Ms. Cheney has her brain turn on, that is why, plus she is disgusted with the arrogance and meanness of Trump.

          4. ” it’s acceptable for a Republican leader to end up agreeing with Democrats about something, persuaded by evidence”

            Brett, you’re going against your party’s orthodoxy, which is that no amount of evidence should be sufficient to convince a “loyal” Republican of truth.

      3. After an extensive investigation? This election was one of the most scrutinized in history it has held up over and over again as fair and accurate. There is not extensive investigation that will satisfy people like you because you don’t want accept the truth.

        1. Florida in 2000 was extensively scrutinized. This was the most, “No, you don’t have standing to demand extensive scrutiny!” election in history.

          1. Scrutinized by the media, not by…whatever the GOP is doing now.

          2. Standing is not the responsibility of the court it is the responsibility of the plaintiff’s lawyer to show that their clients have standing. Why did the former President’s campaign hire such incompetent attorneys?

            1. Because the Democrats bullied his original attorneys into bailing on him at the last minute. Not that it apparently took a lot of bullying, he’d made the mistake of hiring a law firm that mostly donated to Democrats.

              I guess he assumed that because lawyers stay bought in the private sector, the same would be true in politics.

              1. “Because the Democrats bullied his original attorneys into bailing on him at the last minute.”

                Should have hired bully-proof attorneys, then.

            2. They hired incompetent lawyers because no competent lawyers were willing to make claims that the campaign wanted them to make.

              I’m quite sure if I asked my attorney to wear a tu-tu, bark like a dog, and do the chicken dance in front of the courthouse he would decline. But I’m also sure I that with enough money I could find an attorney to do that. Same idea here.

              Oh, and blaming “the Democrats” for “bullying” his previous attorneys is simply absurd, and smacks of paranoia.

              1. Right, and I suppose you think Parler’s law firm dropped them spontaneously, too.

                Trump Campaign Lawyer Quits Lawsuit After Harassment Complaint

                1. Which proves exactly nothing except that the majority of American had grown physicially ill hear Trum or seeing his grimacing face.

              2. Has there ever been a more incompetent legal team than Rudy Giuliani, Pam Bondi, Jenna Ellis, Sidney Powell, etc.? Would you hire any of them to represent you in traffic court?

                1. Did you see Brett’s links to law firms that were NOT the ones you mentioned?

                  1. Did the no-names outperform the All-Stars in the Courthouse?

              3. “They hired incompetent lawyers because no competent lawyers were willing to make claims that the campaign wanted them to make.”

                I was involved. This is true.

                Not only that, but the experienced, able Republican lawyers laughed at Trump Election Litigation: Elite Strike Force with the rest of us.

          3. 1) Some judges have reached the merits. They have found that there’s no substance to the claims.
            2) Independent of judicial inquiry, there’s been extensive inquiry, often led by Republicans, in many of the states. These inquiries and audits have found no evidence to support any of the claims being made by Trump and friends.
            3) It’s funny to use 2000 as a counterexample, since the result of Bush v. Gore was to shut down scrutiny of the election on December 12. We’re in May, six months after the election. Arizona is in the midst of yet another audit. Georgia conducted multiple audits in December and January. Michigan completed an audit in March. There’s been vastly more scrutiny over a significantly longer time period than ever happened in 2000.

            1. 2000 was to shut down recounting and recounting and recounting, lest it impact official submission hard dates.

              We never even got this far. And people continued to scrutinize the results after in both cases anyway.

              1. “We never even got this far”

                What are you talking about? Georgia did *two* full recounts, along with secondary signature verifications in some cases. Wisconsin did a recount. There’s been audits. What do you think was done in Florida that hasn’t been done in this election?

                1. Why do you think recounts prove anything? None of us ever ASKED for a recount. We ASKED for an audit. A full, match real people to real votes audit.

                  What happened in Florida THIS time was there weren’t last minute rule changes allowing more ballots to be counted. There weren’t machinations by secretaries of state to send out blank ballots to people who hadn’t requested them.

                  How do sentient beings not see the stark differences?

                  1. Maybe you’re not aware, but the US works on a secret ballot system. There’s no way to match votes to voters after the fact. That’s by design, and has been the case throughout the history of the country.

            2. “since the result of Bush v. Gore was to shut down scrutiny of the election on December 12. ”

              Did nothing of the sort. All it did was shut down an illegal recount. “Scrutiny” continued, and the 2000 Florida election is probably the most carefully scrutinized election in US history.

              1. “All it did was shut down an illegal recount.”

                The one ordered by the Florida Supreme Court?

                2000 brought us the surprising news that declaring a winner on schedule was the primary importance, and actually counting all the votes was not actually required.

      4. She is very conspicuously accepting as accurate the Democratic party’s position on the election,

        You mean, the truth. You have nothing to support the Republican – deranged – position.

        And yes, Brett there have been any number of recounts and audits. I mean, maybe they didn’t find bamboo paper or something, but you really need to stop pretending that the reported, certified, recounted results are just a sort of vague guess.

        1. No, I mean exactly what I wrote. The point is independent of whether the Democratic party’s position was right.

          If you’re a Republican leader, you’re expected to agree with Republicans, not Democrats. If you can’t do that, you’re in the wrong party.

          1. If you’re a Republican leader, you’re expected to agree with Republicans, not Democrats.

            Not that simple. Yes, you are expected to take generally Republican positions on policy matters, which Cheney has certainly done.

            But when your party goes off the deep end on something, your responsibility is to try to bring it to its senses.

          2. ‘The point is independent of whether the Democratic party’s position was right.’

            Republican Party getting seriously Orwellian.

          3. “If you’re a Republican leader, you’re expected to …”
            Speak the truth even if it is hard to hear. Otherwise you are no leader at all.

          4. If you’re a Republican leader, you’re expected to agree with Republicans, not Democrats. If you can’t do that, you’re in the wrong party.

            “There go my people, I must find out where they are going so I can lead them.”

            I don’t think you understand the concept of leadership.

            You also don’t understand the difference between ideology and facts. Yes, a Republican should agree with Republican ideology. A Republican should not agree with Republican facts, because there are no Republican facts. There’s only true facts and false ones. In this case, Republicans are deluded or liars, so a Republican leader should not agree with them; he or she should lead them to the truth.

            1. Voting to impeach Trump wasn’t a question of facts. In fact, it required a devotion to the opposite of facts, since the impeachments were both premised on lies.

              1. First, this is whattaboutism. The issue is the GOP going along with Trump’s campaign bullshit. You got anything to say to defend that?

                You think the Ukraine call’s ‘do me a favor’-cum-no-aid-for-you-till-you-please-the-President was a lie?
                You think Jan 06 was a lie?

                I know you believe a number of things that are unsupported, but you usually come around to not denying bare facts.

          5. If you’re a Republican leader, you’re expected to agree with Republicans, not” reality.

            I’m of the opinion that Republican-Americans should be Americans first, and Republicans second. Putting it the other way around is just bad for America, and that’s not the branding you’re supposed to be going for.

      5. Brett, you seem to have missed that the gentleman is asking for views from thoughtful conservatives.

      6. Rejecting reality is not a sustainable position in the long-term.

      7. “Not if you’re going to be a Republican leader.”

        Brett says you can’t work from objective reality if you want to lead Republicans.

      8. “She is very conspicuously accepting as accurate the Democratic party’s position on the election, the Democratic party’s characterization of everything Trump. Maybe that could be a reasonable ending point for a Republican”

        So, accepting reality is poor form for a Republican leader? It’s just not something that’s important to you guys?

    4. Which is the way forward for the GOP?

      For starters, the only real way forward is to continue to ignore the trolling of the popular media, who periodically elevate a faux conservative mouthpiece at loggerheads with the party as some sort of supposed moral giant. They’ll be done with her soon enough when she’s no longer useful, just like all who came before her.

      Second, but similarly, the party needs to continue to define itself by principles and goals, and ignore the trolling of the popular media that seems hellbent on turning Trump into some sort of purity test. “Do you, or have you ever, looked favorably on….”

      On my short list more specifically, they need to figure out a way to cut back on their penchant for deficit spending, second only to the alternative. But at this point I imagine I’m starting to get past the scope of your question.

      1. “faux conservative mouthpiece”

        Cheney voted with Trump 92% of the time, as opposed to Stefanik, whom Trump supporters want to replace her, who was at 77%.

        1. Its no their voting record that matters. Cheney launched a suicide attack and Stefanik seized the main chance.

          Fortune favors the bold.

          1. What Cheney is doing is bold. She’s throttling her political career.

            Stefanik, like most Republicans, is being servile to Trump. I’ve never seen a political party so full of sniveling cowards.

            1. Yes, the opposition party cowardly fails to do what your party would prefer they do.

              I would not disagree that Stefanik is being an opportunist here, opportunism is certainly common among politicians. And Cheney may indeed be making a principled stand, though that’s not the way I’d bet.

              But if you think the principled thing to do is ally with the other side, you should join the other side. You don’t expect to ally with the other side and continue to be in your former side’s leadership.

              1. Trump insists he won the election and Republicans with otherwise working minds refuse to point out the truth. I call that mass cowardice.

                1. ” I call that mass cowardice.”

                  Smart politicians are always afraid of their voters.

                  You don’t get it. You and Cheney think Trump sucks, but the vast majority of GOP voters don’t agree.

                  “Politics is the art of the possible, the attainable — the art of the next best”
                  ― Otto von Bismarck

                  Driving Trump out of the party via a direct attack like Cheney is doing is neither possible nor attainable.

                  1. Why do you think the Founders made us a representative democracy, and not a direct one, Bob?

                    Arguing for the virtue of cowardice is on brand for you, but still pretty stark.

                    1. Its not a virtue, but its political reality.

                      Voters call the tune, our reps need to dance to the tune, not tell the voters its a bad tune.

                    2. Politicians standing against the populous are not always successful, but when they are we call them statesmen and leaders.

                      Voters don’t always call the time; our system is exactly designed so that they do not.

                      Funny how the right used to constantly remind me of such, but now that they’ve taken a populous turn the shoe is on the other foot.

                    3. “Voters call the tune, our reps need to dance to the tune, not tell the voters its a bad tune.”

                      This is why the Republican Party’s intensifying inability to compete in national elections in so important.

                      Our electorate becomes less hospitable to conservative candidates — with respect to education, race, social views, type of community, tolerance — every day, especially in our modern, successful communities.

                    4. “we call them statesmen”

                      “A statesman is a politician who’s been dead ten or 15 years.”
                      Harry S Truman

                      “our system is exactly designed so that they do not.”

                      Was designed. It started changing way back with Jackson and has accelerated lately with the decline of the party organizations and universal suffrage.

                  2. “You don’t get it. You and Cheney think Trump sucks, but the vast majority of GOP voters don’t agree. ”

                    Trump doesn’t suck. That would require effort on his part, so he’s not interested.

              2. “Yes, the opposition party cowardly fails to do what your party would prefer they do.”

                What I’d prefer they do is be loyal to Country over Party, whenever the two come into conflict. Then oust the leadership that created the conflict of loyalties. That’s what I’d prefer. (Yes, I’d prefer that in every party, not just the one I tend to disagree with the most.)

            2. “What Cheney is doing is bold. She’s throttling her political career.”

              Then its not bold, its foolish. She can reflect on that in 2023 in her office at Heritage.

              1. Better to lose an honorable defeat than cling to office on a BIG LIE,

                1. Not according to Republicans.

    5. Liz Cheney has always struck me as the type of person born to wealth and privilege who, if her name were Liz Smith, would be working as a customer service manager at some Wal Mart somewhere. Or as my paralegal. Though for that matter so does Trump.

      I don’t see how one can plausibly dispute that under Trump, the GOP has become the party of crazy, and either being crazy or pretending to be is currently a requirement for GOP national office. And she deserves a profile in courage award for standing up to Trump, and is probably about to lose her job for doing so.

      But that puts non-crazy Republicans in a difficult position. They can’t become Democrats since they don’t support the tenets of the Democratic Party, and there’s really nowhere else for them to go. Eventually Trump will go away permanently, and the question is how much damage he will do to the GOP between now and then. Do they just keep quiet and hope Trump drops dead of a heart attack and the sooner the better? Or do they speak out, knowing that it may be a career ender for them? I don’t know what I would do if I were a Republican.

      1. “I don’t see”

        Yes, you don’t. People vote for what they do for reasons. That you can’t see the reasons is a problem.

        1. Of course people vote for what they do for reasons, though that doesn’t mean their reasons are sensible, valid or legitimate. Or for that matter sane.

          But that’s not what I was talking about. What I said was that I don’t see how anyone can dispute that Trump has turned the GOP into the party of crazy. And I note that you didn’t even bother to try to dispute it.

          1. hat doesn’t mean their reasons are sensible, valid or legitimate. Or for that matter sane.

            They are to them. Who are you to decide they’re not?

            I always laugh at the same liberals who’ve always told me not to push their morals on them, demanding that I live by their morals, and that somehow my needs are secondary to their morality.

            1. Morals are open to debate, at least on some issues. Facts are not. Obama isn’t a Kenyan-born Muslim. Hillary Clinton didn’t run a pedophile ring and didn’t murder Vince Foster. School shootings aren’t false flag operations. There really is a Covid pandemic. And the election wasn’t stolen. And the people claiming otherwise are either scoundrels who know they’re lying, or idiots too guilable to know better.

              At this point, the GOP grass roots is mostly a loose confederation of racists, conspiracy theorists, and religious extremists. Not 100% but that’s who’s mostly running the show.

              1. I’m reasonably confident Obama wasn’t born in Kenya, because evidence pre-dating it mattering is available.

                I don’t think Hillary ran a pedophile ring, though Bill probably took advantage of Epstein’s on occasion.

                Neither did she murder Foster, though I’m suspect that ‘suicide note’ was fake as a 3 dollar bill.

                Nor do I think school shootings are false flag operations, though the reporting on them usually sucks.

                There really was a Covid pandemic, it’s about over now.

                But I’d be a heck of a lot more confident the election wasn’t stolen if Democrats weren’t so adamant that nobody be permitted to check.

                1. “But I’d be a heck of a lot more confident the election wasn’t stolen if Democrats weren’t so adamant that nobody be permitted to check.”

                  It’s been checked beyond any, well, forget reasonable doubt. Beyond any doubt that’s not actually outright insane.

          2. You have to define crazy. Because to me, secure borders, not getting into wars, an improving economy, better tax policies and the like, are not crazy. Both parties are guilty of pushing the opposite of the above items. The GOP was already crazy, and the Dems were batshit insane; Trump injected a little bit of sanity, and the GOP and Dems went even crazier.

            That’s my dispute. Have the stones to address the points.

            1. Because to me, secure borders, not getting into wars, an improving economy, better tax policies and the like, are not crazy.

              No, this isn’t crazy. What’s crazy is leaving the specifics of the actual policies aside and pledging allegiance to Trump and promoting his Big Lie.

              “Secure borders” are great. But what Trump did was shuffle money from military construction projects to shovel money at connected contractors to do patchwork on the “border wall,” which he would then stand in front of for some highly-publicized photo op. Meanwhile, he dismantled our asylum system, adopted policies that created a revolving door of human trafficking at the border, disregarded any of the systemic and structural issues driving migration across the border, and sat on any kind of meaningful domestic immigration reform that could have finally brought some sanity (and security) to our country.

              “Not getting into wars” is great. Who wants wars? But Trump’s approach to all of this was to cut and run, covering for any lapses in security by shoveling money to well-connected mercenary groups. Where we used to have military interventions, Trump sought to leave a whole archipelago of ongoing battles contributing to regional instability, no less financed by the Americans through military aid to regional autocrats like MBS and al-Sisi. It may not be our job to settle their disputes or to nation-build, but Trump had no strategy for the aftermath of withdrawing from these disputes. They are continuing to simmer and will become a problem for us again – whether that means regional wars, international terrorism networks, or the like.

              “An improving economy.” Yeah, except for that last quarter of his term. But who’s counting? In the same way that tax cuts never “cost” anything, to the Republican way of thinking, the clearly-not-crazy members of the modern GOP don’t see any connection whatsoever between the mismanagement of the COVID pandemic and an economy that rapidly shed jobs and growth during Trump’s last year in office.

              “Better tax policies,” for whom? A slashed corporate tax rate cut revenues but produced no appreciable return in economic growth. Meanwhile the tax cuts that managed to make their way to the rest of the country are scheduled to phase out and end, unless we pony up the change to extend them indefinitely. Remember that we were promised reform, returns that we could file on a postcard. What we got was a mess of giveaways to the usual interests.

              So – no, it’s not crazy to be a conventional, little-c “conservative.” What’s crazy is to think that Trump’s GOP looks anything like that.

              1. No, this isn’t crazy. What’s crazy is leaving the specifics of the actual policies aside and pledging allegiance to Trump and promoting his Big Lie.

                And you know I feel that way exactly how? And enough of the “Big Lie”. It’s hyperbole designed to make knees jerk, and for that reason I’m not addressing it.

                “Secure borders” are great. But what Trump did was shuffle money from military construction projects to shovel money at connected contractors to do patchwork on the “border wall,” which he would then stand in front of for some highly-publicized photo op.

                So? Politicians of both parties do things like this all of the time, including the photo ops stuff. I remember AOC’s crying at the fence, but we found out there was nothing on the other side of the fence. As for financing the wall, as I remember the USSC said he had the legal right to do it. So tell me what your problem with all of this really is.

                Meanwhile, he dismantled our asylum system, adopted policies that created a revolving door of human trafficking at the border, disregarded any of the systemic and structural issues driving migration across the border, and sat on any kind of meaningful domestic immigration reform that could have finally brought some sanity (and security) to our country.

                Absolutely, unarguably, 100% wrong. Those problems were being fixed, since it was a lot harder to get into the country once Trump’s policies were put in. If you want to see mass migration over the border, drug smuggling, human trafficking and the like, look at the current occupant of the White House. Because that stuff increased 100-fold since January 6.

                “Not getting into wars” is great. Who wants wars? But Trump’s approach to all of this was to cut and run, covering for any lapses in security by shoveling money to well-connected mercenary groups. etc…

                I’m wondering if I went back into your commenting history from 2001-2009, when Bush was in charge, did you have the same opinion? There is no reason for us to be over in the Middle East anymore. I was an early adopter of the Bush doctrine, but it’s quite obvious that it didn’t work. Trump knew that, and acted accordingly.

                “An improving economy.” Yeah, except for that last quarter of his term. But who’s counting? etc…

                This is utterly dishonest, and you know it. The last quarter was because of Covid. And there is nothing Trump or Biden could do to stop the economy from going down. The blame goes to governors, especially in Dem states, who shut down their own economies for a disease that is 99.5% survivable. Trump did NOTHING that caused a dip in the economy, and I defy you to name any policy that can be blamed for it.

                “Better tax policies,” for whom? A slashed corporate tax rate cut revenues but produced no appreciable return in economic growth. , etc…

                Everyone’s taxes went down, except those in Dem states who were paying enormous state taxes and got to write those off in the past. The economic growth was there the whole time, so this is another dishonest lie.

                I don’t know what planet you live on, but it’s not earth if you believe anything in that load of nonsense you typed. The whoppers and nonsensical views are so opposite of what actually happened, I wonder how such beings are sentient enough to come in out of the rain.

              2. Simon,
                It is not credible to blame Trump for the economic debacle that was 2020. Except for China…hmmm.. no one in the world did any better.
                Likewise for whatever reason we were not engaged in a new foreign war despite many D predictions of that.
                And finally despite the early bromance with Mr Xi, Mr Trump actually had the balls to try some substantive response to Chinese hegemonism and unfair trade practices. Note that Mr Biden has not backed down from those.

                On the negative side was virtually every other moment of the day for the 4 years in office that has made America more polarized, more angry and more afraid than before.

            2. ” Because to me, secure borders, not getting into wars, an improving economy, better tax policies and the like, are not crazy.”

              Neither are they Republican. They built a wall that was approximately 29,900 feet too short to block passenger jets by stealing money that was supposed to build schools for the children of servicemembers, they pushed us into smashing Iraq, and they crashed the economy in 2008 and again in 2020, they love to cut taxes on people who have more money than me without actually cutting taxes on me, (which is an admittedly selfish way of measuring “better tax policy”)

          3. Very well. I dispute it.

            It’s seems pretty biased of you to tell people that their reasons aren’t sensible, valid, or legitimate. Especially when you don’t even see what their reasons are.

            1. Uh, that’s a two way street. That’s all I’ve been hearing from commenters in this thread is that my reasons aren’t sensible, valid or legitimate. Or are you just new at this internet arguing thing?

              1. ” That’s all I’ve been hearing from commenters in this thread is that my reasons aren’t sensible, valid or legitimate. ”

                Obviously, if someone points out that your reasoning isn’t sensible, valid, or legitimate all you have to do to make it all three is to claim that someone else’s reasoning isn’t sensible, valid, or legitimate and that fixes everything.

        2. “Yes, you don’t. People vote for what they do for reasons. That you can’t see the reasons is a problem.”

          Agreed. The problem is the “reason” behind voting Republican.

      2. Krychek_2 : “Though for that matter so does Trump”

        You’re far too generous. Without daddy’s millions, Trump would have been working a three-card monte on some street corner. Probably successfully; I’ll grant him that.

        1. You guys love making up stories

          1. You’re right; grb shouldn’t make things up. Trump probably wouldn’t have been successful at it.

        2. “Without daddy’s millions, Trump would have been working a three-card monte on some street corner. Probably successfully; I’ll grant him that.”

          No, being successful at that game takes time and effort. The only way Trump would be successful at it would be if he teamed up with someone else who did all the work.

      3. “I don’t see how one can plausibly dispute that under Trump, the GOP has become the party of crazy”

        Here’s one way: Trump isn’t the cause, he’s a symptom. the GOP abandoned being the party of grown-up business leaders some decades ago. I’d argue it’s related to catering to the magical-thinking social conservative wing of the Party, which led to a different Cheney insisting “we make our own reality”.

    6. “Which is the way forward for the GOP?”

      She is a general without troops. A very large majority of GOP voters still trust and support Trump.

      Its only with time this might fade, virtue signaling op eds in The Bezos Post won’t do it.

      1. “A very large majority of GOP voters still trust and support Trump.”

        I am quite grateful that my children and grandchildren get to compete economically and politically with such people.

      2. “A very large majority of GOP voters still trust and support Trump.”
        Then they better get used to being governed by Democrats.

      3. ” A very large majority of GOP voters still trust and support Trump.”

        Life is like a box of chocolates. No, wait. Actually, stupid is as stupid does. Yeah, that’s the right quote. What kind of shrimp you gonna have?

    7. I know Liz is coming from an honest perspective, but in which ways did Trump subvert the constitution?

      I’d like to see anything he said that was significantly different than Al Gore or John Kerry or even Hillary Clinton did or said after they lost.

      The difference was that Trump supporters were more enthusiastic and went overboard on Jan 6 in invading the capitol.

      I do think Trump lost the election, but I think it is incontrovertible that elections officials broke the law in setting aside the procedures mandated by state law leading up to the election.

      Perhaps the lesson from 2020 should be if you want people to have confidence in the result don’t change the rules in the weeks prior to voting just because you think you have a better idea on how to do it.

      1. How about Trump’s repeated assertions the election was stolen by massive fraud (e.g., putting Biden ballots through counting machines three times, finding suitcases full of fraudulent ballots, intentional vote counting errors in mail-in ballots to make up for the known difference in in-person voting) irrespective of the pre-election changes? It’s bat-shit crazy stuff and the GOP rank and file believe him.

        1. I don’t think Trump is used to losing. And I’ve said before he should have dropped his election contest when the EC voted on Dec. 14th.

          I’m not sure why you expect me to act like an actual Trump cultist, when I merely think Trump was the lesser evil.

          But this does not change the fact that there were many violations of election law in 2020, and while those violations are not technically “fraud”, they may easily have been enough to win the election for Biden.

          1. “I don’t think Trump is used to losing.”

            Once again, showing the solicitude due to a 12-year-old, patting him on the head, not holding him to adult standards.

          2. Trump is a man-baby who can’t stand losing. He would be claiming he won an election he lost no matter how it was run.

            How about a little more detail (math included) for the claim in your last paragraph?

            1. ” He would be claiming he won an election he lost no matter how it was run.”

              He started whining pre-emptively about being cheated out of the one he “won”. Complaining about the 8 million illegals who voted (despite being unable to produce even one) should have been a tipoff.

          3. I don’t think Trump is used to losing.

            I don’t see why not; he’s been doing it pretty much his whole life.

          4. “I don’t think Trump is used to losing.”

            So you think his mind is going?

        2. Hillary claimed the election was stolen from her too:
          https://news.yahoo.com/hillary-clinton-claims-presidential-election-220135269.html

          Al Gore claimed he should have won.

          The Democrats claimed voting machines in Ohio cost John Kerry the election, and Barbara Boxer and several Dem Reps contested the certification in congress.

          Jill Stein claimed Russia hacked the 2016 election.

          I don’t condone any of that, but none of it is unconstitutional, or outside the bounds of normal politics. In a close election claims like that will be made.

          That is why I support the state legislatures auditing close elections like in Arizona and Georgia to put the claims at rest.

          1. Clinton in 2019, long after she conceded, is not comparable to Trump starting on election night (Clinton conceded on election night). Gore’s claim had some legitimacy (not bat-shit crazy) and he conceded. Boxer bathed herself in ignominy.

            1. Clinton, and the DNC paid foreign intelligence operatives, along with allies in the FBI and CIA to manufacture evidence that Trump and members of his campaign were Russian assets.

              Whether the original goal was just to smear Trump in the campaign, they used the ‘evidence’ to lie to the FISA court to try to hound Trump out of office and/or impeach him.

              Hillary and her surrogates were claiming that Russia illegally interfered in the election and coat them victory from the day the results were posted.

              1. The Deep State bullshit is right up there were Trump’s “massive fraud” claim. The GOP has gone cuckoo.

              2. Trump is Col. Menninger, who found dinosaurs and extraterrestrials in the Amazon rainforest.

                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g2H-9OmErYQ

                Funny in 1984, but reality in 2021.

                1. Dinosaurs in the Amazon was originally a story by Arthur Conan Doyle (yeah, the “Sherlock Holmes” guy) called “The Lost World”. It’s out of copyright now, and you can get it for free from Project Gutenberg. It’s an interesting adventure story, and there’s a reason Michael Crichton named his second Jurassic Park novel after it.

              3. Clinton, and the DNC paid foreign intelligence operatives, along with allies in the FBI and CIA to manufacture evidence that Trump and members of his campaign were Russian assets.

                You might want to adjust the tinfoil. None of that is even remotely true. Clinton and the DNC hired an American company to do opposition research on Trump.

                Nobody paid anyone to “manufacture” evidence, and of course both the nonpartisan Mueller investigation and the bipartisan senate intelligence committee investigation found that “Russia Russia Russia” was real.

                One person, who was not Clinton or the DNC, altered one document that was relevant to the FISA court. This was about Carter Page, not Trump, and had nothing to do with hounding him out of office or impeaching him.

                Hillary and her surrogates and the U.S. government all agree that Russia illegally interfered in the election. “Cost them victory” — “Hillary would have won, if…” — is not at all the same as “I actually won, and they’re trying to steal it from you with fraud.”

              4. “Clinton, and the DNC paid foreign intelligence operatives, along with allies in the FBI and CIA to manufacture evidence that Trump and members of his campaign were Russian assets.”

                They paid Trump to leak classified intel to the Russkies right in the White House? That’s a DEEP conspiracy.

          2. As for Jill Stein, thanks to her, Trump won in 2016.

          3. “That is why I support the state legislatures auditing close elections like in Arizona and Georgia to put the claims at rest.”

            Do you support it enough to pay for it, or are you expecting me to pay for it to put your mind at rest?

        3. The question was whether Trump subverted the constitution. He has a first amendment right to assert any damn thing he wants. The fact that you clutch your pearls at what he says doesn’t change that.

          1. It’s more than speech. He was hoping his speech would produce conduct that subverted the constitution.

            1. “Hoping” is the most subversive thing evar!!!

              1. … and it did produce the hoped-for conduct – and could again.

    8. I would respond to Liz that if we let the theft of the election go unpunished or fail to prevent it happening again, then the Constitution is lost before we can even address it. And any proper reading of the Constitution requires a much smaller federal government than we have now, for all the reasons laid out at length in the Federalist Papers.

  6. Anyone following the farcical “audit” going on in Arizonia?

    (1) The auditor is a QAnon-grade freak-show mess
    (2) They’ve refused to disclose the financing behind the audit
    (3) They’ve refused to disclose their procedures
    (4) They have “independent observers” – but make them sign a NDA
    (5) They been caught bungling – including measures that marred ballots.
    (6) Their “investigation” seems like a kid who just got a junior science kit.

    I’m getting the sad feeling this clown-act will inevitably deliver the “results” they’ve been paid to produce. Of course that’ll be quickly & comprehensively exposed (in detail), but what will it matter?

    The Right will get the lies they need now like mother’s milk. At this point it’s an addiction to them. The rest of us will be left with tested data, established facts & simple true – but 06January showed how far that takes you.

    1. You seem worried grb. Why not just wait for the results?

      1. Why not do it right in the first place? What good are the results if your methods are flawed from the start?

        1. How are they flawed?

          1. Go to the original comment in this thread.

            1. The original comment is a lot of assertions, and maybe some of them are right. But they’re not PROOF of flaws. That’s not how this works.

              1. The major assertion here is that there is no transparency. It does not matter what the finding are because there is no way to check them without transparency. What is needed is a public document stating the scope of work, the decision bench marks, the quality control of the audit, the funding source and the staff to be involved. These are simple steps used in any investigative work. Is there any public document on this audit? If not, that is the place they should start.

      2. Because as long as the nuttery that the election was stolen continues, it does damage to the nation. And that you don’t see the obvious kookery in the claim that ballots were flown in from China says far more about you than it does about the investigation. What’s next, UFO aliens voted hundreds of times via ESP?

        At this point, I’m not even inclined to be nice or diplomatic about it. The idea that the election was stolen is being marketed by scoundrels to imbeciles.

        1. Sigh. Krychek, you’re left with essentially two options.

          1. Allow the people who have questions to investigate the questions.
          2. Deny the people who have questions the ability to investigate the questions.

          Which do you pick?

          1. 2, where the people are obviously insane.

            You don’t get to try and unzip the president just because you believe it’s a lizard wearing a human costume.

            Go ahead, believe you’re being ‘suppressed’ if you like. No-one cares about a tiny number of total nutcases claiming ever more absurd things.

            1. “Obviously”.

              No. Not obvious at all. Get out of your echo chamber and talk to real people. They’re not nuts; they have valid concerns based on actions that were taken during the election.

              1. No-one has valid concerns. Thinking they do is a sign of outright lunacy. That’s why it’s only a tiny number of nutcases who think that way.

          2. It’s a free country, they can investigate whatever they want. Including whether Elvis and Prince Phillip are living together in the Florida Everglades.

            The problem is that unlike Elvis and Prince Phillip, this particular stupid question is doing real damage to the nation. It undermines faith in our democracy and in our institutions and generates mistrust. It led to a riot at the Capitol on January 6. If this particular nuttery were just harmless National Enquirer fun, that would be one thing, but it isn’t. This one is doing real damage.

            1. So which is it Krychek?

              Option 1 or Option 2?

              1. Did you read my comment that began “It’s a free country, they can investigate whatever they want”?

                1. And then there were a lot of caveats and issues. So, I was looking for a clear answer.

                  1. The caveats and issues go to whether the investigation deserves any respect, and not whether it can be conducted. They want to investigate, fine. Everyone else can point and laugh.

                    1. Then let them investigate.

                    2. They’re investigating.

                      But managing to impeach their own credibility as they do so.

                    3. Who is saying they can’t investigate? I haven’t seen anyone here (or for that matter anywhere else) say that they can’t investigate. You want to go looking for Bigfoot, be my guest.

                      What is being said is that the people who think the election is stolen deserve all the ridicule that’s coming to them, and then some.

                    4. “Who is saying they can’t investigate?”

                      The Biden DOJ?

                      Looks like they plan on the usual, “You can’t ask people who are listed as voting if they really did vote, that’s intimidation!” ploy, to prevent checking for absentee ballot fraud.

                    5. Brett, your big complaint about this last election is that Democrats violated laws in putting in place the election procedures that were used on election days.

                      Based on that stance, if the DOJ is correct that the audit is in violation of federal law, wouldn’t you consider that problematic in the same way? (i.e., just because you think it’s the right thing to do doesn’t mean you get to end run around the law to do so)

                      FWIW, I read the segment on going to people’s houses as being advisory (i.e., “be careful not to focus on minority voters because that starts to look discriminatory”) not saying that they necessarily need to stop.

                    6. jb is correct : Brett’s big complaint has been that Democrats violated the laws thru adjustments to election procedures that came from judicial order or a state’s election authorities.

                      However that’s happened in every election in living memory, bar none. In the past twenty years there were 653 emergency cases filed in federal district courts and an additional 143 related federal cases – many of them right up to the eve of the election. And election authorities in the executive branch of state government has always adjusted election procedures in response to circumstances.

                      There might have been more measures this time because of covid, but Brett has tended to avoid specifics in favor of a general argument – as this was a new development of the 2020 election alone.

                      Of course there’s only one thing new here : Brett’s need for an excuse to delegitimize Biden’s victory. He wants to avoid the humiliation of embracing Trump’s fraud lies, which is to his credit. But an ahistorical strawman argument ain’t the way to go about it.

                      https://www.fjc.gov/content/case-studies

                    7. Brett’s need for an excuse to delegitimize Biden’s victory. He wants to avoid the humiliation of embracing Trump’s fraud lies, which is to his credit.

                      Dissonance reduction.

                    8. “Based on that stance, if the DOJ is correct that the audit is in violation of federal law”

                      But, I don’t think they are right. Simply asking somebody listed as having voted absentee if they actually did, after the election is over, is not “voter intimidation” under any sensible definition.

                      What the hell is the point in intimidating voters AFTER the election, anyway?

                      But it does make sense if your goal is just to prevent absentee ballot fraud from being proven to have happened.

                      For the record, I do think Trump lost, and attribute it primarily to Zuckerberg’s stealth campaign of paying elections offices in heavily Democratic areas to conduct GOTV drives. That bypassed campaign finance limits and reporting, and totally blindsided Trump and the GOP.

                      Though only the endemic violations of election laws got things close enough for that to push Biden across the finish line.

                      In fact, I think that the recent election reform acts being pursued in ‘red’ states prohibit this tactic is the real reason Democrats are screaming ‘vote suppression’.

                    9. What the hell is the point in intimidating voters AFTER the election, anyway?

                      Um — despite Trump’s fondest hopes — there’s always another election coming up.

                    10. “Simply asking somebody listed as having voted absentee if they actually did, after the election is over, is not “voter intimidation” under any sensible definition.”

                      Nice franchise ya got here. Shame if anything were to happen to it.

                      “What the hell is the point in intimidating voters AFTER the election, anyway?”

                      It’s not like we’re planning on having any more of them.

                  2. “So, I was looking for a clear answer.”

                    Here’s the clear, unambiguous answer.

                    Your guy lost. He did not win. He is, and has been for a long time, a big loser.

                    1. …and so are you for backing a loser.

              2. The problem, Armchair Lawyer, is that you want a crackpot theory that the election was stolen to be treated with respect, and it doesn’t deserve respect.

                You are entitled to believe that the election was stolen. Someone else who thinks OJ Simpson is innocent is entitled to believe that too. What you, and he, is not entitled to is a reaction other than snickers.

                1. And in fact OJ was declared not guilty, by a jury of his peers.

                  1. Do you think OJ is innocent, AL? Or are you just trying for off-topic pedantry?

                    1. I think he was declared not guilty.

                      Krycheck may snicker. But OJ is free. As judged by a jury of his peers.

                    2. So irrelevant pedantry it is. Krychek_2 said nothing about OJ’s current legal status.

                    3. Krychek:
                      ” Someone else who thinks OJ Simpson is innocent is entitled to believe that too. ”

                      Sarcastro: “Krychek_2 said nothing about OJ’s current legal status.”

                      I mean…At this point you’re just being dishonest. Standard for you.

                    4. Being guilty, and not being in jail, are not mutually exclusive. Are you seriously arguing that no guilty person ever beats the rap?

                    5. Krychek,

                      You’re being dishonest here.

                      What I actually said was “OJ was declared not guilty.” Twice.

                      Which actually is exclusive by definition with “Being guilty”

                    6. “I think he was declared not guilty. ”

                      He was also declared liable.

                    7. for the wrongful death. By a jury of his peers. And more recently than the “not guilty” from the criminal trial.

              3. I wouldn’t let these incompetent nut cases who, among other things, seem to be ignoring chain of custody issues, investigate.

                And before I’d let anybody investigate again I’d look at the first two audits and see if there is anything worth investigating – 40,000 ballots flown in from China – are you people fucking serious? – and if there’s not then I’d tell them to pound sand, because there has to be a stopping point.

                Sixty lawsuits is enough.

                1. You wouldn’t let people investigate?

                  You don’t see any problems with that?

                  1. You wouldn’t let people investigate?

                    You don’t see any problems with that?

                    Not what I said, A.L. Don’t twist the comment.

                    How many investigations do you think there should be? Any number, as long as someone wants to do one? Should there be a requirement to produce some evidence – call it probable cause or whatever – to justify looking further? Should the would-be investigators be required to show they have some idea what they are doing, follow transparent procedures, pay attention to chain of custody issues, respect the integrity of the original ballots, etc.?

            2. As to the false myths of BLM that led to a whole summer of riots?

              1. Dude, head’s up : You can’t use BLM as a single all-purpose response to every right-wing embarrassment – at least not effectively. This was true even before your recent BLM=KKK comment, but that miscue left you even less rhetorical ground to stand on.

                1. But BLM does = KKK

                  1. I’m going to need to see the math on that one.

          3. Do we all get to investigate? I’d like to investigate the investigators and their investigation as I have some questions.

            1. Mitch says we do NOT get to investigate the insurrection. That determination could stand some investigation…

          4. It’s a false dichotomy.

            If the Arizona Republicans want to hire someone to re-count the ballots, yet again, they can do so.

            But shouldn’t the re-count be done transparently, in accordance with the same standards that legally applied to the official count? Why would you permit less oversight and access than were allowed and required for the official count? Why would you do it in more insecure circumstances?

            From what we’ve seen about this “re-count” so far, it’s clear that the parties are engaged in a fishing expedition. They are looking for “evidence” that will feed months of speculation – and lawsuits? – that will have to be seriously addressed and debunked, just like we had to do with “statistical anomalies” and “mysterious vans” with out-of-state plates after the actual election.

            There’s not a serious interest here in re-running the numbers to ensure the official counts were sufficiently legitimate to trust the outcome. If that’s what they wanted to do, they would have structured it differently. The only desired outcome, in the Republicans’ view, and the whole reason for this exercise, is to fuel conspiracy theories.

            1. They want to keep re-counting, until they get a different result. Which, on their dime, is not my problem.

          5. “Sigh. Krychek, you’re left with essentially two options.

            1. Allow the people who have questions to investigate the questions.
            2. Deny the people who have questions the ability to investigate the questions.

            Which do you pick?”

            I pick stomping the Republicans in the culture war, watching the electorate make them uncompetitive in national elections, diminishing the undeserved amplification of yahoo votes in our elections, diminishing (and criminalizing) voter suppression, and continuing to shape American progress in the liberal-libertarian tradition.

            May be the better ideas continue to win.

        2. “that you don’t see the obvious kookery in the claim that ballots were flown in from China says far more about you than it does about the investigation.”

          China? I thought the story was that the whole operation was run by Hugo Chavez from his 6-foot-deep hole in Venezuela?

    2. You forgot to mention the search for bamboo:

      “A GOP-backed auditing group in Maricopa County is burrowing through ballots in search of bamboo fibers and Chinese paper to prove a far-fetched theory votes were flown in from Asia”

      https://news.yahoo.com/gop-backed-auditing-group-maricopa-042234294.html

      Obviously, this is a direct consequence of all that fluoride they’ve been putting in the water.

      1. So, what in particular is wrong with examining the ballots this way?

        1. Well, in addition to it’s obvious kookery, there’s this from TFA:

          “The far-fetched theory rests on the idea that tracings of bamboo would prove that the ballots were created abroad, despite the fact that not all paper made from bamboo is milled in Asia, and in fact, there are several bamboo forests in the US.

          Additionally, while bamboo pulp paper does exist in China, not all paper produced in China contains traces of bamboo as the country continues to have a thriving wood pulp and timber industry.”

          IOW, it’s a pretty nutty idea, and even if they do find bamboo fibers it won’t really prove anything. Although the second paragraph above gives the “auditors” an out – i.e. just because we didn’t find bamboo fibers doesn’t mean the ballots weren’t flown in from China.

          1. “it’s obvious kookery,”

            It’s a theory to be tested. The cost is fairly small, it’s non-destructive, etc.

            If there is bamboo in the paper, then the source of the paper can be tracked down. I imagine whoever printed the ballots has a source of where the paper came from.

            1. It’s a theory to be tested.

              Just like the earth being flat, and airplanes are a conspiracy.

              Judging people by which theories they try to test is a pretty normal thing to do.

              1. And if you think the earth is flat, you can test it. And people have done so. Repeatedly.

                If you think that people may have smuggled fake ballots into an election…well, things like that have happened in other elections.

                1. Sure you can test it. And everyone else can laugh at you.

                  1. What will you do if the theory is proven correct though?

                    1. Same question, but about flat earthers.

                      Given the folks who are doing the AZ audit, and the techniques they’re employing, I’m pretty confident that their findings will not really be probative, except as an admission against interest.

                    2. It’s not going to be proven correct, A.L. for two reasons:

                      1. It’s utter bullshit.
                      2. The “auditors” may claim it’s correct, but since they seem to have no fucking idea what they are doing the claim would be without merit.

                      Does every nonsensical, baseless, claim that anyone makes about the election get to be checked, investigated, tested, etc.? Because that’s the upshot of your arguments.

                    3. “What will you do if the theory is proven correct though?”

                      I won’t be worrying about politics, I’ll be too busy soaring through the skies just by wishing really hard.

                    4. AL,
                      Were someone truly serious about testing the source of ballot paper, there are analytical procedures and labs that can do that of 6 or more sigma confidence level. Likewise there are well established blinding procedures to be enforced by disinterested third parties.

                      All thi if one were truly serious. BUT they are not, o any trace of well established analytical forensics is absent.

                      You draw your conclusion. I’ll draw mine.

                    5. ” there are analytical procedures and labs that can do that of 6 or more sigma confidence level.”

                      You mean, like actual science? Gee, I wonder why Republicans aren’t interested then? Given the well-known bias of all scientists against Republicans? Come on, be serious.

              2. “Just like the earth being flat, and airplanes are a conspiracy.”

                Huh? You and I both know whether or not the world is flat. I don’t know if some ballot paper contains bamboo. Do you?

                1. Maybe some ballot paper does contain bamboo. Let’s say you prove that.
                  OK, so you proved that some ballot paper contains bamboo. That certainly proves that a vast conspiracy exists to alter the outcome of elections, but not the down-ballot elections, because why would the Democrats want to win more Congressional seats if they to Biden into the White House?

            2. It’s a theory to be tested.

              What fucking theory? What test? If they find bamboo in the paper that means 40,000 ballots were flown in from China?

              Is that what you think? Imbecilic idea.

          2. You don’t know much about the pulp & paper industry, do you?

            I don’t know about bamboo, but with wood you first debark it, and then chip the logs, and then feed them into a massive “digester” where various chemicals are used to literally digest the chips into pulp, which is then sprayed onto a massive belt and then rolled into paper.

            And then you get into weight and color — there are a mosaic of different kinds of “white” paper — not to mention if it contains any recycled paper (the fibers are shorter and it tears easier), etc.

            It is possible to tell if two sheets of paper came from the same mill and (I believe) same batch of pulp. There’s a lot more automation than there was 40 years ago, which has both made a more consistent product and fewer things to look for, but I believe that there still are forensic fingerprints, starting with the pH of the paper (acid free costs more) and the rest.

            It’s easy to dismiss this, but don’t forget that it *is* possible to trace the paper which genuine US currency is printed on back to just one mill in (I believe) Dalton, Massachusetts.

            1. The usual barking mad nonsense from Dr Ed the Talking Horse.

              Most pulp is recycled paper.

              You cannot track down a mill, let alone a batch, from the identical sheets that modern mills produce. You can sometimes narrow it down, but usually not.

              US currency paper can be ‘traced’ in the sense that we know where it comes from, and the source is in no way secret or confidential.

              1. To be fair, most talking horses I’ve met are much more reasonable than Ed.

              2. “Most pulp is recycled paper.”

                Not according to the US EPA — See: https://archive.epa.gov/wastes/conserve/materials/paper/web/html/faqs.html#recovered

                Bear in mind one other thing that the EPA does mention but doesn’t emphasize — every time you re-pulp the paper, the fibers get shorter and your quality goes downhill. So while a third (not “most”) pulp comes from recycled paper, a disproportionate percentage of it goes into lower grade paper. For example, there is a mill in Erving, Massachusetts that recycles high-grade office paper into fine napkins, another in New Jersey that recycles it into toilet paper.

                That brings up one other thing that any thinking person instantly realizes — if paper fibers are not inherently of uniform length, one can measure them and (more importantly) compare them to the fiber array on another sheet of paper.

                The goal here is not to tell which mill the questionable ballots came from but to show that they *didn’t* come from the same mill as the legitimate ones.

                BTW: While the source of the currency paper is neither secret nor confidential, the process by which it is made very much is.

                1. Plus much of the “recycled paper used in making paper never actually left the paper mill it is waste from carious parts of the papermaking process.

              3. Actually, it can mainly be traced due to the fact that it’s very different from ordinary paper, and made by a proprietary process. Nobody else knows how to make it.

                1. Oh, stop it. It isn’t a secret in the first place.

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

                  1. Didn’t say it was secret. I said that it’s forensically traceable.

                    That you already know the result of tracing it doesn’t change that. Indeed, if you did the forensics and it DIDN’T match what Crane Currency turns out, you’d have a good case for counterfeiting.

                    1. “Didn’t say it was secret.”

                      Did say “Nobody else knows how to make it.”

                      So there’s a reason why someone might conclude that you said it was secret.

                    2. ” Indeed, if you did the forensics and it DIDN’T match what Crane Currency turns out, you’d have a good case for counterfeiting.”

                      Ballots aren’t printed on money, so how does this help you prove that your guy didn’t lose the election despite never winning over more than half the population in public opinion polling?

            2. It’s like listening to Phineas J. Whoopie from Tennessee Tuxedo.
              On every subject, he shines the light. The only thing missing is the 3DBB.

        2. “So, what in particular is wrong with examining the ballots this way?”

          Nothing, except that it’s insane and makes you look a complete moron, desperately scrambling for anything to help prove your ridiculous notions. Credibility went out the window a while back. This is the kind of thing that triggers competency assessments.

          1. So, if nothing is wrong with it, then why not allow them to do it?

            1. Because they’re clearly not competent to act as adults without full-time carers, and if we provide said carers, the carers will have enough to do without chasing after wild geese.

            2. Why not give full platform the people arguing jet fuel can’t melt steel beams?

              Because throwing conspiratorial smoke still screws with human cognition and rationality, even when nothing comes up.

              They can do their dumbass test if they have the money and access, but they also should get mocked for it.

              1. “Why not give full platform the people arguing jet fuel can’t melt steel beams?”

                It can’t — and didn’t.

                What jet fuel can do — and did do — was heat the trusses which caused them to flex — not melt — and sag to the point where they pulled loose from their mountings. Trusses are a known hazard to firefighters — the NYFD expression is “never trust a truss.”

                That’s what brought the building down — it pancaked. The floor below wasn’t able to hold the load so it gave way and so forth.

                Had the steel beams actually melted, the top of the building would have gone sideways like a tree being chopped down. But it didn’t.

                1. Fire – How it affects structural steel framing.

                  It’s a combination of the steel losing strength, becoming less rigid, and elongation induced buckling. And, of course, the impact having knocked loose the insulation that was intended to delay this event long enough for an evacuation.

                  As soon as one floor couldn’t take the load any longer, the whole building above that floor fell, and the impact against the floor below overcame its strength, and so forth like a vertical line of dominoes.

                  In my experience, you actually CAN explain this to the conspiracy minded, if you don’t treat them like they’re hopeless lunatics, and actually bother marshaling evidence and explaining things.

                  1. But that requires seeing others as people instead of obstacles or speed bumps on the road to progress.

                  2. ” you actually CAN explain this to the conspiracy minded, if you don’t treat them like they’re hopeless lunatics”

                    Just because you are a hopeless lunatic is no reason to treat you like one.

                  3. “In my experience, you actually CAN explain this to the conspiracy minded, if you don’t treat them like they’re hopeless lunatics, and actually bother marshaling evidence and explaining things.”

                    The main problem with taking conspiracy theories seriously is that, at some point, the proponents of the theories will start claiming that that the fact that they cannot produce any evidence of the conspiracy is itself proof that the conspiracy exists and is very powerful.

            3. Because if you insist o checking every insane idea you’ll never stop.

              1. So, let them waste their effort and check every insane idea. It’s their time and money, right?

                1. No. Let’s not.

                  Because they are going to come to insane conclusions, and then people like you will believe those insane conclusions.

                  1. But they’re saving time, and ALREADY believe the insane conclusions.

        3. “So, what in particular is wrong with examining the ballots this way?”

          All armchair, no lawyer.

        4. “So, what in particular is wrong with examining the ballots this way?”

          The fact that if they magically find the signs of bamboo in the paper, it proves approximately nothing.

          Try to follow along. I believe that Bigfoot is real and living in the forests of the Pacific Northwest. Therefore, I’m going to examine some popcorn that happens to be inside my microwave oven. If Bigfoot is real, the popcorn will pop into big fluffy kernals, and if Bigfoot is not real, the popcorn will just burn. Aha! I have proof that Bigfoot exists!

      2. Yep. And I hear that bamboo plays hell with yer Precious Bodily Fluids.

        1. Its an obvious commie plot mr. president we are wasting valuable … ahhh *falls down* time

      3. They also apparently are using ultraviolet light on some ballots, for undisclosed reasons.

        At some point I expect the clingers to start praying on those ballots a spell, and practicing the laying on of hands to summon the wisdom of Jesus with respect to the provenance of those ballots and the role of Satan in all of this.

        Carry on, clingers. So far and so long as your betters permit, and that’s it, though.

    3. The only thing clownish about the audit is that the Democrats keep interfering with it, both by non-compliance with subpoenas and by sneaking in saboteurs. What it demonstrates is that it’s morally mandatory to introduce enough safeguards into every election to make a complete audit possible, and enough time into the election cycle to be able to do one before a result must be certified.

      Accountants know how to do this stuff perfectly well. But company executives hardly ever try to stymie an audit the way the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors is doing, because the feds would send them to prison. This is one of the reasons we really need to legalize private prosecution in the US — the prosecutors are partisan. The huge number of Antifa terrorists who go scot-free proves it.

      1. This Conspiracy goes all the way to the top! To the top, I tell you!

  7. Here’s an interesting case.

    One of the state AG’s who was originally helped into office by left-wing funding decided to launch a lawsuit against the Governor of Missouri. She got him to resign from office.

    Problem is? Apparently she lied her rear end off to get the lawsuit.. 62 acts of misconduct that resulted in 79 false representations in court.

    https://justthenews.com/accountability/political-ethics/investigation-finds-massive-wrongdoing-prosecution-against-ex

    1. Wow, and that’s the less-bad side?

  8. An interesting study. In tension with the study about how much better conservatives understand liberals:

    An Asymmetrical “President-in-Power” Effect
    https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/american-political-science-review/article/abs/an-asymmetrical-presidentinpower-effect/569413D40D79A79C3F7CA6F2183743B9


    In an extensive analysis of several major datasets (including ANES and GSS) over a period of five decades, we find that in the United States, conservatives trust the government more than liberals when the president in office shares their own ideology. Furthermore, liberals are more willing to grant legitimacy to democratic governments led by conservatives than vice versa. A similar asymmetry applies to Republicans compared with Democrats.

    1. Can’t really comment on that, it’s paywalled. But I’ve seen some problems with polarization metrics before.

      But, really, hard to comment on something you’d have to pay $25 to see.

        1. A period of five decades ending with Obama doesn’t do squat to show how things presently are; The Democratic party went utterly nuts when Trump won.

          1. So did the GOP. That’s not going to disrupt the trends indicated.

            1. Sure it is: Both parties basically went to approximately zero trust in the other, so the former distinction is no longer valid.

              1. 1) The argument ‘Sure concervatives used to lack principles, but I’ll be recently the Dems did that as well!’ is not a really much of an argument against the study.

                2) The results aren’t about trust; it’s about prejudice. As in pre-judging what the opposition does as automatically bad.

                4) As I said, this integrates interestingly with the finding that conservatives understand liberalism more than the reverse. Understand, but yet also unthinkingly oppose. That’s an odd combo.

                1. “The results aren’t about trust; it’s about prejudice. As in pre-judging what the opposition does as automatically bad.” Or it could be about having more inherent trust of authority. If both Rs and Ds have a -50 reaction to a pres of the opposite party, but Rs start at a default 70 trust level but Ds start out at a default 60 trust level, that would explain the results too. That makes more sense to me, given the culture of valuing more highly respect for authority on the R side, but I’ll admit both things could be going on.

                  1. It’s clearly not about inherent trust in authority, given the right’s massive swing to suddenly having trust in authority when it’s their guy.

                    That’s not inherent.

                    1. If the whole of the executive bureaucracy is assumed by Republicans to be D+30, D+40, etc bias, then only when they have political appointees in power will they get anything close to fairness from the branch.

                    2. Sarc, yes it is, I don’t think you understand how this might work and what a natural bias would do. In fact, the study says exactly what I said – “conservatives trust the government more than liberals when the president in office shares their own ideology”.

                    3. Allutz – that’s a pretty good hypothesis for the effect.

                      tkamenick – the other half is also important: “conservatives trust the government less than liberals when the president in office does not share their own ideology.”
                      It’s the swing that’s the thing.

                2. My argument against the study is that it ended about 7 years ago. Have there been no relevant developments since?

                  1. That we should discard history; that Trump is a discontinuity in political sociology, is incorrect.

                    Allutz’s Deep State hypothesis is more viable, though not really more flattering for conservatives than inconsistency.

              2. ” Both parties basically went to approximately zero trust in the other, so the former distinction is no longer valid.”

                So, both parties when to approximately zero trust in the other, from their previous positions of approximately zero trust in the other? And you detect some kind of discontinuity of trends because of this?

    2. Seems very logical. Libs trust govt more in general and use it a vehicle to push their ideology when in power – making them more dangerous to their political opponents. Cons distrust govt and arent nearly as likely to use power to push ideology, making them less dangerous. So when cons have their guy in power the perceived threat against them is less. Libs have little to fear as cons have no real substantial victories in decades, they only delay.

      1. Way to prove the papers’ point.

        Principles don’t matter, only tribe.

        1. Not really. I’m assuming this study is working off a baseline of trust, so its all relative. If ‘my’ guy isn’t going to threaten me, Im going to trust his govt more then if my enemy is running it. I dont need a study to figure that out.

          1. Your position looks to be this:
            Republicans are cool, and Dems suck, and that’s why Republicans can be trusted with power independent of what they do, and Dems never trusted independent of what they do.

            The fact that Dems seem to care more about actions of people in power is just more proof they suck.

            And this makes you a very smart man.

            Oy.

            1. Not close to a good faith representation – so do you bother even typing that out? I’ll make it really easy for you….
              Dems suck, are more pro govt and are more likely to use power to advance pro govt ideology (=more threat to enemies).
              Cons suck, are less pro govt, and are less as inclined to use power to advance govt power (=less threat to enemies).

              1. LOL at cons don’t advance government power specifically as a threat to their enemies.

                Rhetoric about the size of government is an ideal you like. But history has shown that does not change the threat level of opposition government.

                Note the metric is about general trust in government, not anything about specific actions related to punishing enemies.
                The survey indicates that conservatives believe liberal actions are bad a priori not on a case-by-case basis.
                And how Dems are more trust but verify.

                1. Again really simple for you – Which group is most likely to use govt power to control people?

                  Very easy example – Covid fanatisism (lockdowns/vax/masks/passports).

                  1. They both do this, there is no predictivity based on which part is in power and whether the government will abuse it’s power.

                  2. ” Covid fanatisism (lockdowns/vax/masks/passports).”

                    Do conservatives disdain science because it conflicts with their fairy tales, or just because they’re knuckle-draggers, or both?

                    Believe as you like, clingers, but you will continue to comply with the preferences of your betters.

              2. “Dems suck, are more pro govt and are more likely to use power to advance pro govt ideology (=more threat to enemies).
                Cons suck, are less pro govt, and are less as inclined to use power to advance govt power (=less threat to enemies).”

                Your premises are accurate up to the word “suck”, but then just godawful wrong. Hint: Everybody uses power to try to cement their own hold on power when they have it, not just one side or the other. What’s different is how they spin (lie about) it.

      2. Yeah, KCar, every study on the subject basically shows R have a greater default level of respect for authority and value that as an inherent good.

        1. Are you talking just govt authority? But overall, yeah Rs Im sure are more likely value parental/church/police authority and more likely to follow laws.

          Thats completely seperate issue. I am arguing that cons have more to fear from libs being in power, then vise-versa. Just looking at last decades, other than 2A cons have won nothing and libs keep advancing the football to the left endzone. Perfect example, can you imagine the cons even considering ‘packing’ the SC because they dont have their advantage anymore. That dont play that way.

          1. ” Perfect example, can you imagine the cons even considering ‘packing’ the SC because they dont have their advantage anymore.”

            You mean, by, say, announcing a new rule that Presidents aren’t allowed to put justices on the Supreme Court in the last six months of their term, and then rushing through a Supreme Court appointment in the last six weeks of their guy’s term?
            Yeah, amazingly, I CAN imagine that, and quite clearly.

      3. ” Libs trust govt more in general and use it a vehicle to push their ideology when in power”

        You’re trying to contrast this with how the Cons NEVER try to push their ideology when in power, which has just one little problem.

      4. “Seems very logical. Libs trust govt more in general and use it a vehicle to push their ideology when in power”

        You may be looking through a partisan haze to reach this conclusion. I would offer a counterproposal: Getting the libs on board is more like herding cats while the cons cling together as if conformity were the only consideration. Either side will try to use government to extend their ideology when they can, but the cons are more naked about it. A lot of it depends on the issue, for example, the cons are more enraged that a jury convicted a cop of murdering a black man than they are enraged that a cop murdered a black man.

  9. I moved to Spain at the beginning of February and it’s finally starting to feel like home to me. It’s weird to be 7 hours ahead of where I was. The stock market, news, and all my friends are sleeping for half my day.

    1. You’ll get used to it. But your idea of normal business hours will stretch a lot.

    2. You should start taking 2 or 3 hours out of the middle of the day to just rest and let other people catch up to you.

  10. https://alphanewsmn.com/school-district-will-allow-blm-speech-but-not-dissenting-opinions/

    teacher/student 1: “I support the Black Lives Matter movement.”
    school district: “Great!”

    teacher/student 2: “I oppose the Black Lives Matter movement.”
    school district: “You are inappropriately bringing politics into the classroom. You are fired/expelled.”

    1. That position is now called equity

    2. Ed>

      One of those is a political position, while the other is not. It isn’t hard, really. Black lives matter is not a political statement. ‘I oppose X movement’ is a political statement, obviously.

      That aside, ‘opposing the BLM movement’ is vile. It’s just overt racism. End of story. If you don’t recognise that, it’s because you’re far, far down some racist rabbit hole. Sure, you should be free to express your vile racist views if you do so in polite ways and appropriate forums, but don’t pretend that you’re not literally advocating white supremacy.

      1. That’s an idiotic set of statements. BLM is a political movement, Marxist at its core (according to them), and has engaged in violent activities. Opposing the BLM movement IS NOT racist.

        1. Marxist at its core (according to them)

          According to one guy early on in the movement. Redbaiting to cover racial grievance politics is a pretty telling move.

          1. More than one guy, and the violence is contemporary.

            1. Considering how many people says black lives matter, it is unsurprising the right has some folks to highlight.

              But it’s not Marxist, as Davedave noted, it’s more brand than movement, and it’s not violent.

              But the right’s embrace of racial grievance politics means it must be demonized.

              1. Denying that BLM is violent after last year is pretty crazy, Sarcastro. I mean, they’ve never been exactly what you’d call peaceful, but they went over the top last year with the violence.

                1. I know you think every protest was a riot, and that every rioter was coordinating with the BLM hivemind, but actually it turns out that’s not true.

                  1. “I know you think every protest was a riot,”

                    Are you suggesting that every riot was a protest? A fiery but peaceful protest, perhaps? Minimizing the BLM riots makes outrage over the Jan 6th riot appear disingenuous. Just sayin’.

                    1. BLM isn’t violent because at least one BLM protester didn’t do something violent. Don’t you know how the sarcastr0 game is played?

                    2. I’m not minimizing the riots, I’m questioning whether ‘BLM riots’ is a connection you can draw.

                      I’ve seen a lot of really insistent people, but not a lot of establishing a connection.

                    3. “I’m not minimizing the riots, I’m questioning whether ‘BLM riots’ is a connection you can draw.”

                      Of course it’s a conclusion you can draw. There’s plenty off footage of people burning stuff down, destroying property, and spraying “BLM” all over the place. Whether or not it’s a conclusion that’s applicable in a particular situation depends on the situation, but it’s not debatable that there’s plenty of violence conducted on behalf of BLM.

                    4. Declaring it’s not debatable doesn’t make it not debatable.

                      An asshole doing asshole stuff and then writing BLM on it doesn’t really make BLM the same thing as that asshole.

                      Otherwise, I got bad news for you about Trump.

                    5. BLM doesn’t have official membership roles so “no true scotsman” works.

                      The violent people were not BLM. Because they didn’t have BLM membership cards.

                      Hope you didn’t want to have a conversation about reality.

                    6. “An asshole doing asshole stuff and then writing BLM on it doesn’t really make BLM the same thing as that asshole.”

                      When BLM is an unorganized movement, then sure it does. BLM is what people do under the BLM banner, no more and no less. You don’t get to say that only the peaceful stuff counts as BLM stuff.

                    7. “Are you suggesting that every riot was a protest? A fiery but peaceful protest, perhaps?”

                      Pointing out that not all protests are riots (and even that not all protests were followed by riots) counts as political now, to the racist apologists.

                  2. S_0,
                    About BLM riots, I can only say that downtown oakland had not recovered from the 2008 financial collapse. The BLM protests and subsequent destruction during roits when combined with CA lockdown rubrics have set Oakland back at least 20 years. Yet the Riots were applauded by our city “leaders.”
                    Don’t be surprised that I am pissed and vote against each and every one.

                    1. Yet the Riots were applauded by our city “leaders.”

                      Were they?

                    2. The last several weeks have seen substantial protests in Elizabeth City, NC by BLM and allies. The police have not yet been able to provoke any rioting.

                2. Are Donald Trump supporters violent after this year’s storming of the Capitol? Denying that is pretty crazy, Brett. I mean, they’ve never exactly been what you’d call peaceful with their driving cars through crowds, shooting up black churches, traveling to other states with illegal semiautomatic rifles to “defend” property they don’t own, and whatnot, but they went over the top this year with the violence.

                  1. “Are Donald Trump supporters violent after this year’s storming of the Capitol?”

                    I don’t know. But the “Stop the steal” movement certainly is.

                  2. It certainly wouldn’t make sense to say that Trump supporters aren’t violent, would it?

                3. “Denying that BLM is violent after last year is pretty crazy”

                  Drive down to Elizabeth City and see for yourself.

              2. Sarc, saying BLM isn’t violent makes it really hard to take anything you say seriously. I thought that was something you valued.

                1. I know this is received wisdom on the right, but I can’t help but notice you’ve not brought much of a counterargument.

                  Brands don’t usually cause much in the way of violence, though violent people sometimes like them a brand.

                  There is no national BLM movement. Occupy Wall Street was more centralized, FFS.
                  Similarly, the protests this summer were largely nonviolent. The right may try to conflate them with riots, but if you drill down their reasoning ends up in tin foil territory pretty quick.

                  1. “Similarly, the protests this summer were largely nonviolent.”

                    What does that mean? It wouldn’t be hard to come up with a metric that says that the Jan 6th protest was largely nonviolent. But it would be just as meaningless.

                    1. The Jan 6 protest WAS largely nonviolent.

                      The invasion of the Capitol was the whole issue.

                    2. Sure. Just like with BLM, it’s the riots that are the issue, not the protests.

                    3. Glad we got that cleared up. But you continue to fail to tie the riots to BLM.

                    4. ” Just like with BLM, it’s the riots that are the issue, not the protests.”

                      Now, examine your reasoning in assuming that the riots are connected to the protests. Is it because you want to discount the protests, and will take any reason offered to justify doing so? Because that’s what it looks like.

                    5. “‘Similarly, the protests this summer were largely nonviolent.’

                      What does that mean?”

                      It means that laying the blame for violence at the feet of people who did not engage in violence is both wrong and stupid. Extending the blame to people who supported the protests (but not the riots) is extra wrong and stupid.

                      Wanting the police to kill fewer citizens does not imply support of arson and looting, and never has, except to devout partisans (who should get over that kind of thing).

                      THAT’S what it means.

        2. Do you think the current level of police violence is cool?

          Note that BLM’s proposed reforms are generally not specific to blacks.

        3. BLM is not a political movement, it’s a statement. The ‘BLM movement’, as white supremacists term it, isn’t actually a political movement either. It’s a matter of basic human decency, which obviously a white supremacist wouldn’t understand.

          Black Lives Matter has not engaged in anything. It can’t. It’s just three words, and an idea. You’re conflating the actions of (a tiny minority of) supporters of an idea with the idea itself.

          BLM cannot be banned in US schools because of the 1st Amendment.

          1. Wrong. BLM is most definitely a political movement. It just so happens that the Rochester Public Schools Board supports it.
            Some day — I don’t think we’ll have to wait very long — we’ll see similar treatment of expressions of support for / opposition to political parties. (as in: no consequences for “I support the Democratic Party”; dire consequences for “I support the Republican Party”) And they’ll be just as dishonest about that…

            1. “Police, please stop killing us black people.” – BLM

              “Why does BLM have to be so political? That’s why I disagree with them. I’m not racist.” – right-wingers

              1. The bigots know they are losing their influence and privilege in American society. This riles them. Tough.

            2. ” BLM is most definitely a political movement.”

              Because what could be more political than “hey, would you mind not killing so many of us?”

          2. Black Lives Matter has not engaged in anything. It can’t. It’s just three words, and an idea. You’re conflating the actions of (a tiny minority of) supporters of an idea with the idea itself.

            What is the definitive statement of the idea and what makes it definitive? You appear to say that it does not and could not include anything that a nonracist could object to. Can you explain what makes you so willing to dismiss those who disagree with you?

            1. The words ‘Black Lives Matter’ are self-explanatory, and if you oppose that idea then you are saying ‘Black Lives Don’t Matter’. There’s no middle ground. Obviously saying that black people’s lives don’t matter is _literally_ white supremacy.

              As for a more general way of looking at it, BLM is about acknowledging that not only has there been hideous amounts of racism in the past, but there is still an awful lot now. Particularly in the US. Again, opposing it is lacking in basic human decency.

              https://youtu.be/rAAKjg4gRpQ?t=6

              1. The words ‘Black Lives Matter’ are self-explanatory, and if you oppose that idea then you are saying ‘Black Lives Don’t Matter’.

                But the words ‘Black Lives Matter’ also indicates an attitude towards the words ‘All Lives Matter’ such that those who utter the latter words must be punished. It is obvious that the meanings of these phrases is more than the superficial definitions of the words and your insistence otherwise is disingenuous.

                1. “But the words ‘Black Lives Matter’ also indicates an attitude towards the words ‘All Lives Matter’ such that those who utter the latter words must be punished.”

                  To whom, exactly, is this indicated?

                  1. To whom, exactly, is this indicated?

                    It can’t be denied that this reaction to “All Lives Matter” is associated with the Black Lives Matter “movement” but not to all who believe simply that black lives matter. So this is indicated to those members or supporters of the Black Lives Matter movement who insist upon or encourage or enforce the consequences for anyone who says “All Lives Matter,” and everyone realizes there are enough of them to make the consequences a certainty.

                    1. so you go looking for a fight, and you can usually find one, and you think this mostly says something about the other people?

                    2. “It can’t be denied that this reaction to ‘All Lives Matter’ is associated with the Black Lives Matter ‘movement'”

                      Philosophy time. What happens when an undeniable concept meets a denial? Let’s find out. I specifically deny your claim. It’s bullshit.

          3. That’s pure poppycock! It IS a movement, it has various chapters around the world, it raises money, it organizes people and protests.

            You have just redefined it according to your own narrative, which doesn’t reflect reality.

            1. Not all brands are movements.

            2. “That’s pure poppycock! It IS a movement, it has various chapters around the world, it raises money, it organizes people and protests.”

              They organize people and protests. Which is bad because…

    3. teacher/student 1: “I support the Black Lives Matter movement.”
      school district: “Great!”

      The government speech doctrine applies when the government is speaking. “student1” is not the government. The doctrine doesn’t give the government a license to discriminate between private speakers based on the content of their speech.

    4. In classroom speech in primary and secondary education is government speech. The government gets to control the message whether you like it or not and regardless of whether it is viewpoint discriminatory.

      Outside the classroom the speech would be subject to Pickering test.

      In the collegiate setting, depending on the circuit, Pickering may also apply in the classroom (Demners v Austin).

      You article is on category A. Go start lobbying for change at the school board or up the ladder if you don’t like it.

  11. What is this about “waiving” intellectual property patents.

    Waiving is a word being used to obfuscate that this is nothing more than theft by government. IP is property, and the left has in a matter of months blasted right past socialism and communism to become a fascist-totalitarian state.
    Biden and the left feel perfectly entitled to take anything they want, justifying on the basis that someone else has ‘need’ for the thing that you own. If you thought the most important function of government was to protect individual liberty and property, then we no longer have a government. At least King George only took a percentage.

    1. IP is only property because governments have said so. They can change the rules.

      1. And they can say “Ha! Fooled you!” The government has long established and practiced law regarding IP, and to induce companies to invest enormous resources into the development of a drug or vaccine only to then “waive” the IP law, is a taking.

        1. Google the story. You may be surprised what laws are involved!

          1. I DID read a bit about this, what law are you talking about other than patent law?

            Biden commits to waiving vaccine patents, driving wedge with pharmaceutical companies

            1. What is the IP law at issue? Because from my read, it does not look to be either a law nor domestic.

        2. “The government has long established and practiced law regarding IP, and to induce companies to invest enormous resources into the development of a drug or vaccine only to then “waive” the IP law, is a taking.”

          The US doesn’t have any say in the matter, so US law is irrelevant. If the WHO suspends IP protections on future deals, that’s fine anyway.

          I note that the real solution is for governments to buy-out important patents like this as a matter of course, and make them publicly available.

          1. “The US doesn’t have any say in the matter, so US law is irrelevant. If the WHO suspends IP protections on future deals, that’s fine anyway.”

            You clearly have no idea about how international intellectual property law works.

            If this goes through over the objections of the vaccine developers it could have drastically bad results for the world. Pharmas could scale back investment; won’t be so quick to respond in future; and could go to a trade-secret rather than patent (disclosure) approach, which would slow development across the industry.

            1. I don’t love this largely performative move by the Biden admin, but tone down the drama, dude.

              International drug patent incentives are not nearly as clear as you seem to believe. Do *you* know much about how International IP works? Back in my law days, I did some litigation on the subject, and, it’s not really much of a spur to innovation. It does create good opportunities for lawyers, though!

              Speculate your market-based horribles all you want, they prove only that you worship the market. The actual loss to the companies is not even clear!

              1. The ever-dependable Kevin Drum suggests it’s performance as well:

                “As near as I can tell, this is something of a meaningless gesture. Many of the patents involved in manufacturing the vaccines don’t belong to Pfizer/Moderna/etc. in the first place. They’re licensed from various other sources. Nor are patents really the biggest stumbling block for poor countries that want quicker access to vaccines. It’s manufacturing know-how and shortage of raw materials. And anyway, these countries already have legal remedies available that allow them to force pharmaceutical companies to license generic versions of their drugs at low cost”

            2. You appear to have missed the bit where the patent waiver only applies to countries that can’t afford to pay royalties. There is something close to zero loss.

              It’s all a bit odd, because AFAIK the UK-developed vaccine, at least, is offered royalty-free in any case.

      2. IP is only property because governments have said so. They can change the rules.

        So while the fifth amendment purports to protect private property from being taken for public use without just compensation you say that there is a simple workaround: just declare something to not be property. Ingenious! Why hasn’t this been thought of before?

        1. In the first week of intellectual property class, they go through the ways that intellectual property is different from real property. One of the big ways is that you can copy intellectual property, and everybody can have it without depriving the original owner of it.

    2. They’re not cancelling the US patent, it’s a WHO move about the international rights.

      It’s also mostly symbolic – the IP related to the vaccines is not held by Pfizer, but rather licensed.

    3. Davedave is right, actually.

      Congress is empowered by the Constitution to vest Authors and Inventors with intellectual property rights for “limited Times.”

      The purpose of this is “To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts.”

    4. “Biden and the left feel perfectly entitled to take anything they want, justifying on the basis that someone else has ‘need’ for the thing that you own.”

      there’s precedent for this in law. Back in law school, assuming you went, you probably read the cases that arose from dynamiting buildings during the Great San Francisco Fire of 1903 to build firebreaks.

  12. Israel Rolls Out Covid-19 Passport Program to Children, Who Can’t Yet Be Vaccinated

    TEL AVIV—Israel has extended its Covid-19 vaccine passport system to children who aren’t yet eligible to be inoculated, allowing them to visit cinemas, restaurants and other entertainment businesses as it continues to reopen its economy.

    Under the program, children with negative PCR tests will be eligible for a three-day so-called green passport that will be associated with their parents’ passes. The passports take the form of a QR code that can be carried on a smartphone, though their use isn’t always enforced.

    1. Not re: children in particular, but this is how the passports work in general–you can satisfy the requirement either with proof of vaccination or a recent negative test.

      It seems like Pfizer is going to be approved for use in kids as young as 12 soon, so this may also be anticipating that change.

      1. Pfizer is now approved in the USA for use in kids as young as 12. Israel remains free to make their own approvals for use in Israel, regardless of what the US FDA chooses to do.

  13. I have two friends who are only alive because of organ transplants. I really liked just signing up on my drivers license. I was talking to someone who won’t sign up to be an organ donor because he doesn’t want his “reproductive parts” given to someone undergoing a sex change operation. Could that happen?

    1. No.

      You’re ‘just asking for a friend’, huh?

    2. Heh, that’s a new one.

      Could that happen? Anything can happen.

      Right now, California is pumping hundreds of males into female prisons. They’re doing it upon request of a male inmate, on the notion of transgenderism, and it appears they’ve not denied any such male prisoner requests. A short time ago, nobody would have thought this could happen.

    3. I don’t sign up because I want to be paid for my organ. (or my estate)

    4. If that’s really the only concern, just have a living will or power of attorney that body parts (blah blah) may be donated if usable but body parts (blah blah) may not be donated. Shouldn’t be that hard. It’s not like signing the card really does that much; your next of kin still has to agree.

  14. Biden’s DOJ just interfered with the AZ audit to end the signature match verification to the mail in ballot envelopes.

    What are they afraid of?

    1. Wasting a bunch of time and money.

  15. I notice that a lot of the more obnoxious (in my opinion) people here have stopped posting since the mute option became available . That’s sad, because I was looking forward to muting several of them myself.

  16. Vermont Senate OKs noncitizens voting in capital city’s elections

    Democrats in two Vermont towns are pushing for noncitizens to be allowed to vote

    1. So…what’s the problem?

      States can decide voter qualifications as they want – including allowing non-citizens to vote if they want.

      Note: Per federal law, non-citizens can’t vote for President, Vice President, Presidential elector, Member of the Senate, or Member of the House of Representatives.

      However, if Vermont wants, they could allow non-citizens to vote in local, county, and state level elections.

      1. Noncitizens can also vote in elections for boards of directors for large companies, for leaders of professional organizations or HOAs, and even for the winners of American Idol.

        1. I heard George Soros controls American Idol via the Saul Alinsky playbook. It’s all coordinated from the basement of Comet Pizza.

          (That should get’em upset!)

    2. Could a state give corporations the right to vote?

    3. “Vermont Senate OKs noncitizens voting in capital city’s elections
      Democrats in two Vermont towns are pushing for noncitizens to be allowed to vote”

      So people who live (and normally vote) in another state but have vacation homes or businesses in Vermont can vote for local elections? Oh noes…

  17. ABC News: Children as young as 6 months old now in COVID-19 vaccine trials

    The next stage of trials will involve placebo and treatment groups.

    1. And then fetuses?

      1. They do look at what happens to fetuses when pregnant women get vaccinated, yes.

        1. THEY do medical experimentation on pregnant women? THE MONSTERS!!!

  18. Biden administration may outsource its domestic surveillance of US citizens to private firms

    These firms would monitor “extremist chatter” among Americans online and they would not need to get a warrant before beginning their surveillance.

    …The plan to use outside firms to do the surveillance would be an effort to skirt existing regulations that the Department of Homeland Security must follow, reports CNN. Existing rules prohibit DHS from “assuming false identities to gain access to private messaging apps,” for example. Instead, “federal authorities can only browse through unprotected information on social media…”

    This would be something of a legal workaround, and “Privacy advocates on the Hill have already questioned the Defense Intelligence Agency’s efforts to get around restrictions on collecting Americans’ location data without a warrant by purchasing that data from commercially-available databases.”

    https://thepostmillennial.com/biden-administration-may-outsource-domestic-surveillance-on-us-citizens-to-private-firms

      1. That’s part of the information they’re collecting, but no app yet.

        1. Nice of you to volunteer your bad opinions here, to save them the trouble of tracing it back to you.

    1. You need to get up to speed on who is spying on you.

      first hit on USPS monitoring, almost two million hits

      https://www.dailywire.com/news/usps-admits-to-monitoring-americans-social-media-via-covert-operations-program-report

      1. I know. I posted about this in one of the previous open threads.

        1. You probably didn’t see it because the aluminum foil blocked your peripheral vision.

    2. “These firms would monitor ‘extremist chatter’ among Americans online and they would not need to get a warrant before beginning their surveillance.”

      Cops don’t need to get a warrant before beginning surveillance, either, unless they want to do the surveillance from inside the house.

  19. So, now we have a mandate at my (large) company to make sure that for every position we interview: one Hispanic person, one white , One Asian, and one African America person. The interview questions have nothing to do with the actual job, so who knows how qualified these people are.

    The question I have is whether China with overtake us before or after 37 Progressive Supreme Court Justices rule make race based hiring great again?

    1. “So, now we have a mandate at my (large) company to make sure that for every position we interview: one Hispanic person, one white , One Asian, and one African America person. The interview questions have nothing to do with the actual job”

      If that’s actually true, you should report it. Might even get a payout as a whistleblower, but that’s so obviously illegal you should do so anyway. (I’d say I’m dubious about it being true, but I’ve seen HR departments do some spectacularly stupid things.)

      1. Sadly, it is real.

        No one will challenge or sue over the policy. The “whistleblower” thing only works on the internet. People will not risk their jobs- They will get bullied into silence and if they are too loud they will not get hired elsewhere.

        The irony is that my field “quants” are majority Asian, at least at my company. Since I am of European decent, it benefits me. Europeans can do math and write code too you know! Is this an example of Asian hate?

        1. I don’t know whethe rit would apply to this case, but I’ve always liked the US system of paying bounties to whistleblowers. If the bounty is high enough, it’s worth risking your job for.

          (I have to say, I’ve never understood why in the US, a nation of people who pride themselves on their rugged individualism, you lot are all so spineless at work. I’ve stood up for myself and been promoted as a result; the fear you express isn’t entirely justified. )

          Let applicants know what the system is, and the ones who don’t get jobs can push the complaints without risking anything.

    2. Maybe you should start your own company if you think yours is going to do a bad job hiring and will become uncompetitive. Surely someone else will if you don’t, and if your employer’s approach to hiring is really a drag on attracting good talent then the’ll be at a competitive disadvantage. No China required.

      1. He did say that when he interviews people he comes away with no knowledge of whether or not the candidate is qualified. That seems like it might not be the company’s fault.

    3. Maybe you should tell them that practice is likely illegal: https://www.eeoc.gov/prohibited-employment-policiespractices

      1. Surely you are joking. This is exactly the kind of hiring practices the Biden EEOC will encourage.

        1. Considering an array of potentially qualified candidates. why would a business want to do THAT?

  20. I was in a store over the weekend and they were playing old music. One song that caught my attentions was an ole Rolling Stones song, “Under My Thumb”. It was the first time in many years I’d heard that track and I was struck by the obviously dysfunctional relationship the lyrics describe.

    Camille Paglia admired and defended “Under My Thumb”. She claims that marked the beginning of a rift between her and the radical feminists of the late 1960s.

  21. as a 36 year old male in the best health of my life i’m having a *real* hard time justifying the COVID vaccine. I don’t even think it’s unsafe, I just don’t think I need it, and I haven’t really found anything outside of anecdotal evidence that people in my age and health bracket get COVID bad. Because the vast vast vast majority in my category do not.

    I encourage at-risk people to get the vaccine, cuz I’m not scared of it, I just have a hard time thinking I need it. I’ve never gotten a flu shot in my life, and that’s sort of how I’m seeing this thing given my risk category.

    1. I am fairly low risk (and don’t interact in a high risk way with others) so I have deferred on the vaccine. But, everyone around me has anecdotally reported some pretty harsh side effects so I’m not hopping on the get-it-done-soon bandwagon. I wish there was more data out there that fairly portrayed the frequency and severity of side effects so I didn’t have to just go off what friends and family were reporting. (Interestingly that is a side effect of well intended censorship…)

      1. I got the two Moderna shots and for the second one (the one that was supposed to be bad), I had absolutely zero side affects.

        Nada.

        So, grain of salt….

        1. sure, and i mean, my parents — both in their 70s — got both shots and I think my mom was just a little tired the following day, they didn’t get sick or anything.

          so i’m not scared of side effects. i’m just not a fan of putting things into my body that i don’t need, and by all apparent evidence it doesn’t seem that i’m at risk.

          is there a small chance i could get it and get it bad? of course. but those are risks that i am willing to take, and with at-risk people getting the vaccine it allows me to take that personal responsibility on my own, since (for instance) there’s almost no risk that I might inadvertently give COVID to them bad.

          And, you know, who knows? Maybe in 20 years if COVID is still floating around I might start to consider getting a booster, just like I might consider getting a flu shot in my older years.

        2. Same here apedad….No ill effects from the second dose.

          1. with my first dose, the main thing was that my arm (the one they put the vaccine in) was very sore over the weekend after I got the shot. For the second shot, I had the dread “flulike” symptoms… general stomach upset, disinterest in eating, headache, and the arm soreness again. I’m glad I didn’t have to go to work the morning after getting that second shot. But it passes.

      2. The CDC does track this. Here’s an example of data for the Pfizer vaccine:

        https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/covid-19/info-by-product/pfizer/reactogenicity.html

        More than half of people experience side effects like fatigue and headaches, but in the vast majority of cases its mild or moderate. Severe reactions are quite rare.

      3. My arm was sore for a couple of hours. That was it.

        1. I had that, but I also have vivid, lasting memories of getting vaccinated for typhoid back when I was in USAF tech school in 1986. You get the shot and then by the end of the day the entire arm hurts if any of the muscle flexes. You can tell who got their vaccination because they have their left arm clutched to their side, and they do the best they can to avoid moving it at all. But you don’t get out of class. the sitting and listening to lecture part is no big deal, but the “OK, now everybody get up and let’s head out to the hangar and see how this works in real life” part was godawful. I understand that a lucky few did not get this reaction, and an unlucky few got the same effect from their tetanus vaccination. You get a whole bunch of vaccinations in the first couple of days of Basic Training, and then at the end of Basic you go off to tech school and you get a couple more vaccinations there. At BMT, everybody gets all the vaccinations all at the same time, and at tech school you have to go get your shots around your training schedule, so they give you a weeklong window to choose when to go. Anyways, that vax made my arm a lot more sore than did the Moderna COVID vaccine.

      4. My wife and I both got the Pfizer shots. I had no side effects of either shot, except a little arm soreness. She had no side effects of the first shot. After the second she slept for 36 hours and woke up just fine.

      5. Jimmy, side effects are for a day or day and a half
        Man up, and do the right thing.

        1. Yeah, seriously.

    2. Don’t get the jab.

      Is is safe? Depends upon how you define safe?

      The thousands of folks who have died after having been jabbed would not describe it as safe. Ditto for the hundreds of thousands who, after having been jabbed, have sustained serious injuries.

      1. Here is a partial list of side effects friends/family have experienced:
        -One man, in his 30’s, had full body hives. This lasted for a week. One doctor prescribed antihistamines and steroids that seemed to help. They were out of work for two weeks and it took a total of 4 to recover.
        -One woman, in her late 20’s, and is actively trying to get pregnant has had varying cycles for the last three months. Her OB suggested that she has heard some women having irregular cycles for upwards of six months. Needless to say this is producing a lot of anxiety for her and her husband.
        -One man, in his 40’s, had a vertigo attack within 30 minutes after administration. It was thought it was a stroke and he ended up in the hospital for an overnight stay. Doctors said it was not a stroke but wouldn’t say it was a vaccine side effect (probably for obvious reasons).
        -Several have reported being bed ridden for at least two days from flu like symptoms.
        -At least three have had odd dermatological reactions including injection site reactions, face rashes, hives, and similar symptoms.

        These appear to be far more than a “one off” or small percentage. You can find anecdotal evidence elsewhere on the internet some more concerning than this, however, due to social media censorship they are harder to find. I really don’t blame anyone who doesn’t want to take the vaccine and just roll the dice especially as rates drop.

        1. Anecdata! It’s better than statistics!

          1. When you know the “statistics” are rigged then anecdotal evidence is really as you have to go by.

            1. So, literally: anecdata is better than statistics…

              That says more about you than about anything else.

        2. Jimmy,
          the severe cases reactions are rarer than the serious covid cases in your age group. Reduce your risk for your own self-interest

      2. “Don’t get the jab. ”

        pussy.

    3. You are unlikely to get it bad, but that doesn’t mean you can’t give it to somebody else who does get it bad. Do you plan to wear a mask and social distance indefinitely or do you feel it’s the other guy’s problem?

      1. Right now I largely socially distance and wear a mask when in a public location and I live in an area where most still follow that practice. (I largely don’t care if someone wants to wear a mask, I just don’t go within 6 feet of someone who is not).

        I would just note though that the vaccine does NOT confer immunity to a level where you become an carrier who is capable of infecting others. So it doesn’t matter if you are vaccinated or not, you could still be a carrier.

        1. “I would just note though that the vaccine does NOT confer immunity to a level where you become an carrier who is capable of infecting others. So it doesn’t matter if you are vaccinated or not, you could still be a carrier.”

          Data is still developing on this point. The most recent data seems to be that it does in fact mostly prevent you from being a carrier, and cuts down on the risk of transmission even amongst people who do get it.

          It’s good to see recommendations like wearing masks outside be relaxed as we see more people get vaccinated and as the CDC does a somewhat better job of managing risk instead of being super conservative all the time.

          1. Data is still unclear about the distribution of viral titres in those vacccinated in comparison with the unvaccinated carriers.

            1. See
              “Prior SARS-CoV-2 infection rescues B and T cell responses to variants after first vaccine dose”
              https://science.sciencemag.org/content/early/2021/04/29/science.abh1282

              1. Yes, I’ve read that. Notice that they didn’t do before and after?

                Very conspicuously, the didn’t compare the immune response of people with a previous infection to vaccinated individuals. They only compared the results of vaccination between previously infected and not infected individuals.

                So, though they stated their conclusions as though they knew the vaccine had improved immune response in people who’d been previously infected, all they actually demonstrated was that previous infection improved the effects of the vaccine.

                That study provides no basis at all for concluding that the previous infection hadn’t already given the individual adequate immune response without the vaccine.

        2. “I would just note though that the vaccine does NOT confer immunity to a level where you become an carrier who is capable of infecting others.”

          That’s just rationalization they’ve settled upon to justify demanding vaccinated people continue to wear masks and socially distance. But it’s nothing but sophistry.

          The truth of the matter is that the vaccine, just like actually having had Covid, (Which the vaccine just simulates!) actually does reduce your odds of passing it to anybody else down to a level that is indistinguishable from zero for all practical epidemiological purposes. So what if it’s not actually zero? The difference between one in a million odds and zero in a million just isn’t meaningful from an epidemiological standpoint.

          1. “The truth of the matter is that the vaccine, just like actually having had Covid, (Which the vaccine just simulates!) actually does reduce your odds of passing it to anybody else down to a level that is indistinguishable from zero.”
            Brett,
            How can a trained engineer be duped into believing something that contrary to data?
            The actual distribution viral titres of re-infectees is not well known.
            Then you quotes odds that you have simply made-up. That is worst than lying in this instance. It is shameless and gross pride.

            1. Note that you elided “for all practical epidemiological purposes”

              I’m saying that the odds of passing Covid on after either recovering from it or being vaccinated are not precisely zero, but are close enough to zero for policy purposes.

              1. Brett, Don knows more than I on this, but I do know that the science on this is not yet in. And past general study of coronaviruses shows much reason for caution.

              2. But it doesn’t matter because they already decided what policy they want and if the facts don’t justify it they’ll make up stories and use hype and fear and then justify the policies because people are (for some mysterious reason) afraid.

                1. There’s no vaccine for paranoia yet.

            2. The vaccine is advertised as 95% effective. That means post vaccine you have a 5% chance of getting Covid. If you have it you can pass it.

              The disease that has a 99+% survival rate without vaccine.

              I think we’re in lightening strike territory so I think what we’re being told is political science. Which changes as we’ve witnessed remember when they told us masks didn’t work.

              The political scientists are for whatever maintains lockdowns and mask mandates

              1. Their need to point fingers is paramount.

                1. this is true if YOU are one of THEY.

        3. “I would just note though that the vaccine does NOT confer immunity to a level where you become an carrier who is capable of infecting others. So it doesn’t matter if you are vaccinated or not, you could still be a carrier.”

          Way to turn on a dime. In one sentence, you can’t become a carrier, and then in the next sentence, you can, with nothing in between.

      2. No, I encourage at-risk people to get the vaccine. That’s the rub: people who are at risk, or are scared of getting sick, absolutely go get the vaccine. The best part of them doing that is that it gives me my own autonomy back: I can make these risk assessments for myself, when I know the people who want the vaccine can be protected from severe illness.

        Masks are for other people. Vaccines are for yourself.

        1. “Masks are for other people. Vaccines are for yourself.”

          Not giving a damn about other people is for you.

    4. This is a collective action problem. The motive to look to should not be yourself, but helping the population generally.

      1. I would care more about the collective if they seemed to care about me and my subset of the population. You can’t actively alienate people and then all of the sudden act like they should care…

        1. so we have your permission to not care what you want?

      2. But the vaccine helps the *individual*, which is the point. If my neighbor gets vaccinated he’s protected, and it shouldn’t matter whether or not I get it.

        If the argument is “well we need to get everyone vaccinated so we can eliminate the virus,” well then I feel you haven’t been following along with the development of this thing.

        1. “But the vaccine helps the *individual*, which is the point. If my neighbor gets vaccinated he’s protected, and it shouldn’t matter whether or not I get it.”

          It’s threads like this that make my head hurt. The vaccine doesn’t just help the individual; simply put, it is quite possible that you could get infected and even if you don’t suffer greatly, you might still spread it to others. Others who either didn’t get the vaccine by choice (because they are like you, or some of the others on this topic here), or because they were unable to (because they are housebound, for example), or because they have health issues of other complications that prevent them from taking the vaccine. Finally, as you are aware, these vaccines are incredibly effective- but not 100%. So even if those pesky “at risk” people take the vaccine, and you choose not to, you could still kill them. Dude.

          But putting that aside- despite the trollish false claims by some here, the vaccinations are so much safer than Covid. And even in the healthiest cohorts, the rate of issues from Covid is much greater than that of being vaccinated. So you start by protecting yourself. Then you realize that you are protecting others. Finally, and most tantalizingly, the overall rate of transmission (as we can already see here in the US) goes does as the vaccination rate goes up. We probably won’t be able to stomp it out, because of people like LibertyMike here, and because of areas abroad, but I’d like things to continue normalizing.

        2. Viruses are not an individual problem, period.

          If my neighbor gets vaccinated he’s protected, and it shouldn’t matter [to him?] whether or not I get it.

          Only if he’s an asshole.

          1. Yeah, you should be really worried that unprincipled people might call you names, ryne.

            That’s what your life is about, right? Trying to appeal to people who don’t care about you and would oversee harming you if some analysis favored harming you? Trying to avoid being name-called instead of just quietly deplored or disregarded?

            1. Not sure what this is about, but I wouldn’t come here is I cared much about being called names.

              My comment is about people having even a little priority beyond the self.

              1. Everyone should have Sarcastr0’s personal priorities. No way can any of you be trusted to come up with the right priorities on your own.

                1. Arguing that it is immoral to judge anyone else’s priorities is incoherent AND self-contradictory.

                  Disagreeing with someone’s priorities, and talking about why I disagree, is a pretty normal thing to do. In fact, influencing people’s priorities is basically all social interactions.

                  1. And your opinion is noted. Lots of people have opinions.

                    1. “Lots of people have opinions.”

                      Some, like yours, are obviously tinged by selfishness.

        3. But the vaccine helps the *individual*, which is the point. If my neighbor gets vaccinated he’s protected, and it shouldn’t matter whether or not I get it.

          What if your neighbor is immunocompromised?

          1. His complaint is with God, not the good people all around him who selfishly decide not to become vaccinated because by doing so they’re striking out at the oppressive government that doesn’t want people to get sick.

        4. “If the argument is ‘well we need to get everyone vaccinated so we can eliminate the virus,’ well then I feel you haven’t been following along with the development of this thing.”

          For the last year and a half, the goal has been to keep the virus away from people it could kill. This means also keeping it away from people who get close to people the virus could kill, which means keeping it away from people who get close to people who get close to people the virus could kill. Now, a number of those potential links in the chain are vaxed up. But some of y’all ain’t.

    5. I’m 62, but I already had Covid back in February, and it wasn’t more than a bad head cold followed by two weeks of cabin fever. Perhaps because I’m careful about my nutrition, and get a fair amount of outdoor exercise.

      Normally I’m pretty pro-vaccine, but I’m not a natural immunity denier, either, and a fair number of people I know have had reactions to the vaccine that were at least as severe as my bout of Covid. And the research I’ve seen suggests that the reactions are even worse for people who’ve had Covid.

      So, at this point I’m waiting on more data. Might get a single shot in the fall as a booster.

      1. A journal paper released this week suggests that those previously infected who get vaccinated are less susceptible to variants

        1. But more susceptible to adverse reactions to the vaccine. Making it a judgment call.

          My judgment is that I’ll wait on more data, because having been infected already certainly grants me substantial immunity, and if I did get reinfected, it would almost certainly not be a severe case.

          1. “But more susceptible to adverse reactions to the vaccine. Making it a judgment call.”

            A bad-judgment call.

      2. Brett,
        My 98 yo mom had Covid, and had the Pfizer vaccine with no reactions at all.

        1. The vaccine reaction is due to an overly aggressive immune reaction. 98 year olds are not known for their aggressive immune systems, so that’s hardly shocking.

          As your immune system declines, the odds of a bad reaction decline, too, and the importance of being vaccinated increases. Were I 10 years older, I’d get vaccinated without hesitation.

          1. Were your IQ 10 points higher, you’d get vaccinated without hesitation.

    6. I dunno, isn’t helping prevent transmission to people who are at risk (since none of the vaccines are 100% effective and some people have conditions that contraindicate vaccine) be able to return to normal life enough of a benefit to take on some small amount of personal risk? Americans used to be proud of joining together in sacrifice to make a better society for all, so it’s sad when societal factors don’t weigh into people’s decision calculus.

      1. There used to be more of a cohesive idea of what being an “American” meant to most. After a generation of hating America it is no wonder that there is no one willing to do this now….

        1. You don’t care about people in your local community? That’s who really benefits from you getting vaccinated, not some crazy liberals in New York or San Francisco.

        2. Jimmy the Dane : “After a generation of hating America …. (etc)”

          I’m trying to get my head around this. Told getting vaccinated helps the greater good, Jimmy says screw everyone else and then blames OTHER people for “hating American”.

          All of which makes a theory of mine even surer. Right now I’m listening to “Inferno – The World at War” while in the office, an audiobook on World War II. There’s a chapter on the home front which recounts the sacrifices Americans were asked to make for the war effort. I’m pretty convinced if the same thing happened today, there’d be less compliance & more rage / indignation at the effrontery of the request. Leading the way would be today’s Right, convinced their narcissism, selfishness and petulance is somehow changed (transmogrified) by libertarian cant into “principle” and “nobility”.

          But narcissism, selfishness and petulance it would remain….

          1. It never occurs to you to treat others well. You just make demands and point fingers and complain about them not doing what you demand.

            1. You don’t know that. Your partisan hatred does not confer telepathy or clairvoyance.

              You make a lot of assumptions about how liberals think, and they are continually wrong.

              I don’t know how much you give to charity, or whether you have dogs that you love, or how you treat your neighbors or whatever. Demonizing the other side is not healthy.

              One thing I do know about you is that you have trouble in dealing with this pandemic with anything other than rage at those who think about saving lives beyond their own.

              1. Still nothing about treating others well in that comment. Lots of finger-pointing though.

                1. Still nothing about treating others well in that comment.

                  This, of course, does not support your comment:
                  It never occurs to you to treat others well.

                  It is this angry and empty condemnation with which I take issue.

                  1. You should read the thread again then. Pay attention to who was pointing fingers.

                    Where is anyone’s attempt or commitment to treat anyone well?

                    All I see are people making demands and others considering whether they want to humor yet another set of demands from people who have nothing to offer except demands and finger-pointing for not going along with demands.

                    1. “You should read the thread again then. Pay attention to who was pointing fingers.”

                      Besides you?

            2. I feel obligated to go on the record : I didn’t know David Brooks would have a column in the NYT today on almost exactly the same theme as my comment above (less partisan than mine, alas). Some quotes:

              “Could today’s version of America have been able to win World War II? It hardly seems possible”

              “This week my Times colleague Apoorva Mandavilli reported that experts now believe that America will not achieve herd immunity anytime soon. Instead of largely beating this disease it could linger, as a more manageable threat, for generations. A major reason is that about 30 percent of the U.S. population is reluctant to get vaccinated. We’re not asking you to storm the beaches of Iwo Jima; we’re asking you to walk into a damn CVS”

              “Derek Thompson of The Atlantic recently contacted more than a dozen people who were refusing to get a Covid-19 vaccine. They often used an argument you’ve probably heard, too: I’m not especially vulnerable. I may have already gotten the virus. If I get it in the future it won’t be that bad. Why should I take a risk on an experimental vaccine?”

              “They are reasoning mostly on a personal basis. They are thinking about what’s right for them as individuals more than what’s right for the nation and the most vulnerable people in it. It’s not that they are rebuking their responsibilities as citizens; it apparently never occurs to them that they might have any”

              1. David Brooks likes attention and writes stuff that will get people to give him attention.

                1. And you object to what exactly?

                  1. I’m just not interested in vain musings or giving attention-seekers attention.

                    1. So your advice is that people should ignore you?

        3. “After a generation of hating America”

          One guy got elected President by claiming that America is no longer “great”.

        4. ” After a generation of hating America it is no wonder that there is no one willing to do this now….”

          You’ve been hating America for a generation? How sad.

    7. “as a 36 year old male in the best health of my life i’m having a *real* hard time justifying the COVID vaccine.”

      Is it reasonable to hope that if any old people are to die because selfish dullards declined to be vaccinated, the first two are your parents?

      Accountability is a virtue.

    8. If you think you owe everyone a favor for how well they treat you, then getting vaccinated might be a way to do them a favor.

      If not, you might want to hold out for some hint of something. No reason to cooperate with people who won’t cooperate with you.

      1. If you think you owe everyone a favor for how well they treat you.

        This is not how society works. This is not how cooperation is motivated.

        I’m pretty sure you’re not this much of an asshole in real life.

        1. Spoken like someone who has no intention of treating others well. it won’t work, let’s not even try treating others well

          1. It looks like people who demonstrably don’t care about other people are the *only other people who count* when you talk about treating others well.

            Yeah….no.

            I treat people fine, in general. I don’t feel obligated to bend over backwards to treat assholes well, and that seems to make you feel personally threatened. Draw your own conclusions.

          2. “Spoken like someone who has no intention of treating others well. ”

            Says the guy trying to justify keeping the possibility of spreading a contagious disease alive.

    9. Also, you might want to consider those flu shots. Getting the actual flu (not one of the other things called flu, but real influenza) can be really bad.

      I got influenza one year and being sick for 10 days convinced me to always get a flu shot after that.

    10. This “should I or shouldn’t I” discussion makes me crazy. Those who pretend that their decision not to get vaccinated affects no one but themselves are living in some fantasy world. When you end up in the ICU after a motorcycle accident because you were not wearing a helmet, or when you get hooked up to expensive machinery because you can’t breathe on your own following years of smoking, I pay for it if you didn’t bother to insure yourself. It’s the same with Covid. I will be paying for you when you get put on a ventilator for weeks. So get your shots and stop being being stupid about it.

      1. People who want to control others’ lives say stuff like this. Even if all that were true and not ridiculously exaggerated to advance totalitarian goals, we could all choose to just deal with the realities in front of us instead of bullying each other.

        1. “People who want to control others’ lives”
          You don’t want to get immunized so that you still have the capability to spread a communicable disease to other people, and you’re whining about controlling others’ lives?
          Buy some self-awareness,eh?

    11. “as a 36 year old male in the best health of my life i’m having a *real* hard time justifying the COVID vaccine. I don’t even think it’s unsafe, I just don’t think I need it, and I haven’t really found anything outside of anecdotal evidence that people in my age and health bracket get COVID bad. Because the vast vast vast majority in my category do not.”

      Your reason to get the COVID vaccine is so that you don’t transmit the virus to someone who is NOT young and healthy, who might have a poorer outcome.

  22. I figured given the outcome of the Chauvin trial more jurors would have gone public. And I think we got the answer as to why that might not be happening. I wonder how many others on the jury lied, or conveniently misstated, their answers to the various background questions posed to them.

    I certainly hope it isn’t true, but suspect it is, that some people who were in the jury pool figured they had a moral obligation to get on the actual jury so they could convict Chauvin. And if that happened which results in a mistrial I don’t think any future jury verdict of guilty is going to be viewed as legitimate. That is unfortunate in that I think the prosecution DID prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Chauvin was guilty (although I do think an objective, fair trier of fact could also find there was reasonable doubt).

    1. Wow. Just wow. Still can’t let that one go, huh? The only part of the trial which was questionable was the decision to plead not-guilty to a murder that was videoed by the proverbial bus-load of tourists*. Sure, it’s hard to get a trial where people won’t all judge you the same way, when the evidence against you is utterly overwhelming.

      No-one can get a mistrial when there is zero prospect of overturning the verdict. It doesn’t matter whether the jury was potentially biased if an alternative jury would rule the same way. And make no bones about it, they would.

      * – https://youtu.be/kQVIIWq9gIQ

      1. Did you miss the news story about how a BLM activist outright lied on his juror questionnaire about attending BLM protests and was pictured wearing a shirt suggesting he believed, before the trial, that the technique used by Chauvin was akin to murder?

        1. “and was pictured wearing a shirt suggesting he believed, before the trial, that the technique used by Chauvin was akin to murder”

          Come on. The shirt said “get your knee off our necks”. I agree that may indicate some bias, but it definitely can’t be reasonably read to have anything to do with murder.

        2. Jimmy, I’ve literally just explained why that can’t possibly matter. The only weird thing is that Chauvin didn’t plead guilty. Everything in the trial is as expected given the farcical plea of not-guilty against overwhelming evidence.

          Quite frankly, you could have had a jury of outright black-supremacist/separatists, and as overtly racist as they are, it still wouldn’t have had any effect on the fairness of the trial. Because, and this is really very simple, Chauvin was guilty as hell. There is zero prospect of an alternative verdict in a retrial.

          Seriously, why pick this hill to die on? You could be arguing that there was no racism involved in Chauvin’s actions, as dubious as most people find that proposition, but it’s impossible to argue (honestly) that Chauvin didn’t murder someone. What he did is quite possibly the single most obvious case of police brutality in history, regardless of who the victim was.

          The simple facts here are that Chauvin was a bent cop. He wasn’t taking money, but personal benefits: he is a sadist who did the job because it let him hurt people. We know this with absolute clarity now, thanks to the defence he put forward. He went too far and outright murdered someone. There’s nothing to defend here, whatever point on the political compass you prefer.

        3. “he believed, before the trial, that the technique used by Chauvin was akin to murder?”

          Murdering people IS akin to murder.

      2. And the pictures of the juror at the rally and wearing that shirt are fabricated…

        1. Like you wouldn’t have fabricated such a picture if you had a clue how to do it.

    2. ” I don’t think any future jury verdict of guilty is going to be viewed as legitimate.”

      Why don’t you think a guilty verdict is legitimate?

      1. … just because the guilty guy was recorded committing the crime?

  23. the affidavits are so inconsistent with evidence in the record, they are not worthy of credence. The review of the unredacted document in camera reveals that the suspicions voiced by the judge in EPIC and the plaintiff here were well-founded, and that not only was the Attorney General being disingenuous then, but DOJ has been disingenuous to this Court with respect to the existence of a decision-making process that should be shielded by the deliberative process privilege. The agency’s redactions and incomplete explanations obfuscate the true purpose of the memorandum, and the excised portions belie the notion that it fell to the Attorney General to make a prosecution decision or that any such decision was on the table at any time.

    Spicey!

    1. Ouch.

      FWIW, the last time I saw “disingenuous” in a Judge’s Order was when, after two years of lies to avoid scheduling a dispositive hearing in a case, the Judge called out the attorney’s lies as “disingenuous.”

      Maybe Judge Jackson will eventually escalate to “dissemble.” 😉

      1. Barr should have met with them in a parked plane out on the tarmac, instead, everybody knows that’s above reproach.

        1. Whattaboutism because you got nothing.

          I don’t like to speculate in counterfactuals, but I feel like if Holder or Lynch had such a finding against them, you wouldn’t be comparing that level of demonstrated corruption to an untoward meeting.

          1. “…and the excised portions belie the notion that it fell to the Attorney General to make a prosecution decision or that any such decision was on the table at any time.”

            Something tells me that it’s the judge who is being disingenuous. Is he suggesting that Muller actually did make a prosecution decision? The report said that he didn’t.

            1. You think the judge is lying about the affidavits being redacted in ways that were deceitful?! That’s a pretty crazy take!

              He’s not suggesting anything about Muller; this is about Barr.

  24. New York Appellate Court to Mother: Remove stone from driveway or risk losing your child

    http://decisions.courts.state.ny.us/ad3/Decisions/2021/527802.pdf

    1. That’s rather obtuse considering the number of WHITE men from New York who died in the Civil War.

      1. Not nearly as obtuse as thinking the number of WHITE men from New York who died in the Civil War is relevant to a child custody case in 2021.

  25. My gripes for this week.

    The US Post Office is monitoring social media posts.

    https://news.yahoo.com/the-postal-service-is-running-a-running-a-covert-operations-program-that-monitors-americans-social-media-posts-160022919.html

    The final adjustments to the 2020 Census are being questioned by pubs. Seems 3,500,000 peeps were added to blue states while only red states were adjusted downwards. Historically the Census projections made before the census is taken have been with in .4% of the actual results; but not this year. Both NY and CA were projected to lose one more seat than they actually did while FL and AZ were projected to gain one more seat than they actually did. Both NY and CA had huge adjustments upward from the actual data gathered in the census; NY over 800,000 peeps appearing out of no where and being 4.8% over projections.

    Gotta love the feds.

    1. Hate to tell you this, but Arizona’s not a red state anymore. Conspiracy theory fail!

      1. More generally, if you were going to adjust the population down of “red states” you’d choose places like Alabama and South Carolina that aren’t even competitive, not Florida where you think that you’ve got a chance of winning.

      2. Reading comprehension is your friend.

        There are multiple hits if you do a search on this all confirmed by the US Census data that their projections for the first time since they started keep some of them were way off compared to the adjustments made but in line with the actual data collected.

        The example of NY is the worst case of monkeying up the data with adjustments with CA being the next worst case. If the real raw data instead of the adjusted data had been used both NY and CA would have lost an extra seat and FL and TX would have gained an extra seat. AZ was basically a wash.

        Your post is not even a good deflection, just extra noise.

        1. I don’t think it’s my reading comprehension that needs help.

          First post: “Both NY and CA were projected to lose one more seat than they actually did while FL and AZ were projected to gain one more”

          Second post: “AZ was basically a wash.”

        2. I had recalled a Supreme court ruling rejecting ‘adjustments’, and requiring that the actual enumeration be an actual enumeration.

          But when I looked it up, all they’d ruled was that doing an actual enumeration was within reasonable discretion, not that the Constitution mandated an actual enumeration by mandating an “actual enumeration”. So I guess precedent does permit ‘adjustments’.

        3. Guys, can someone help me out here: was there something atypical that happened in 2020 that might have caused projections made in 2019 to be less accurate than usual?

          1. You mean, besides a corrupt chief executive with stated goals of miscounting people during the census?

      3. Hate to tell you this, but Arizona’s not a red state anymore.

        Wow, so now one swallow actually does make a summer. So many new rules to get used to in the new order of things.

        1. Last two rounds of statewide elections have gone blue. I’m not saying it’s a blue state, either, but it’s definitely a swing state. If you were trying to manipulate the census to favor some states and not others, you’d be really dumb to choose Arizona as one of the ones to mess with to favor blue states over red.

    2. I saw that story. It mentions Biden census revisions for December. Biden took office in January, so that makes no sense.

  26. Faust vs. Vilsack was filed this week.

    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/wisconsin-dairy-farmer-sues-biden-admin-over-racist-relief-plan/ar-BB1gprNI

    The Biden Administration has a loan forgiveness plan that Faust and some other farmers aren’t eligible for because they have the wrong skin color.

    1. Just remember this is would “progressives” call “progress”….

    2. Hey that’s my former law firm! Good case. (I broke off to form a solo focused on my passion – transparency laws.)

      1. They’re also challenging a Wisconsin college grant program that’s only available to a bizarre set of specific minorities.

  27. Behar is Tucker Carlson

  28. Did y’all see the Florida case coming out for criminal penalties for recording the police?

    Gonna get thrown out, no doubt. But may be worth looking up. Alas, I have no time today, but thought the VC might be interested.

    1. Couldn’t find that, searches just turn up a bunch of “Is it legal to record police in Florida?” webpages.

        1. That’s not quite an accurate description. The case did not uphold “criminal penalties for recording the police.” This was a civil suit by the person who was arrested; the case said that the police had probable cause to make an arrest in that case.

          (Which also sounds like total bullshit, but is different.)

  29. Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) has come under fire for accusing Israel of “apartheid” and “stealing Palestinian homes and burning their lands,” and spreading the lie Israelis had set fires to Palestinian fields.

    “@RashidaTlaib, you shared a falsehood about Israeli Jews setting fire to Palestinian fields. This ugly claim has been retracted. You’re a member of Congress. Take down your tweet. Or is it okay to perpetuate untruths when they fit your policy agenda?” the American Jewish Committee (AJC) tweeted Thursday.

    Don’t hold your breath for that vile person to be kicked off twitter.

    1. “Don’t hold your breath for that vile person to be kicked off twitter.”

      If you don’t like who’s allowed to have a Twitter account, kick yourself off and ignore the whole lot.

  30. ACLU Seeks EZPass Through Border for Selected Migrants

    The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is reportedly advocating for the Biden administration to grant U.S. entry to some of the “most vulnerable” migrant families referred by Mexican-based activist groups.

    Pregnant women, sexual minorities, and those in need of medical attention are among the vulnerable people that would be given a fast pass through the U.S.-Mexico border. . .

    [A]n April 30 Wall Street Journal article…reported:

    ‘Mexican nonprofit organizations have started referring about 35 migrant families a day to U.S. authorities to be allowed to cross the border and ask for asylum, said Lee Gelernt, a lawyer for the American Civil Liberties Union. The families are tested for Covid-19 in Mexico and then driven to legal crossings all along the border, according to the people familiar with the process.

    The families being selected to cross the border are considered to be among the most vulnerable migrants waiting in Mexico, including pregnant women, members of the LGBT community and those with medical emergencies. . .

    ..in the coming weeks, a group of aid agencies working at the border is expected to create a more formalized process that is likely to involve coordination with the United Nations refugee agency and the U.S. government, those people said. That more-formal process is expected to expand to include larger numbers of families.’

    . . .While repeatedly stressing the border is closed to nonessential travel and asylum seekers, government officials told the Journal the Biden administration had been progressively allowing exceptions for some families and unaccompanied children.

    Just this week, the Biden Administration loosened the Trump-era pandemic-related border policy (known as Title 42) to allow “vulnerable populations” such as transgender people to enter the U.S. and seek asylum.”

    Man you libs really are wacko. Really fighting hard for that communist dream.

    1. “Man you libs really are wacko. Really fighting hard for that communist dream.”

      As I recall, President Reagan(R) complained to the Commies about BUILDING A WALL. It was considered a win when that wall came down. A win for us, I mean, not the Commies.

  31. I would like to hear what the VC might have to say about this case.
    https://reason.com/2021/05/08/vegan-group-sues-the-u-s-department-of-agriculture-for-promoting-dairy-products/

    I would like to see the plaintiffs win. All speech promoting a product or cause ought to be voluntary on the part of the individual paying for it.

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