Day 126 of 1,461 (or 2,922)

  • Jared Kushner is in big trouble. Big, big trouble.
  • At this point, I’m more suspicious of any Trump officials that didn’t try to conceal communication with Russia.
  • In a bit of good news, the DNC has launched its voting rights commission. I hope they are ready to work.
  • In another bit of good news, Democrat Ted Lieu has introduced a 2 trillion$ infrastructure bill. The contrast, it is staggering.
  • If I ever run for office, I’ll be able to answer the loaded question: “Which government agency would you eliminate?” The answer is ICE. Those creeps scare me (h/t Erik Loomis).
  • When will white, male Republicans take responsibility and condemn the violent, pathological behavior seen among their community? Why aren’t they solving the problem of Republican-on-journalist crime?
  • The ACA needs reform badly (Social Security and Medicare were both amended about four years after they started), but it was still on track to have its best year yet, until it was placed in the hands of deliberate saboteurs.
  • There is a lot in this article on race and colleges, but one interesting aspect is what different schools are doing to address racial disparities in graduation rate. Florida State had a very nice solution to Latinas graduating at lower rates despite good grades.
  • I learned, and you probably learned in physics class that the Tacoma Narrows bridge collapsed due to resonance. The real story is more complicated. Read the scientific paper on it if you want to learn more.
  • Rest in peace, Bye Bye Birdie on NBC. Since Hamilton is probably unfeasible at this point, why not try Hair or Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson?

Days 123, 124 and 125 of 1,461 (or 2,922)

The news keeps coming and coming, but Five Dozen Liquor Jugs is here to help you make snarky sense of it.

  • The most remarkable thing I’ve read lately is New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s speech on the removal of the monuments to treason. Read the whole thing.
  • Please do not assault reporters, Republican candidates for office.
  • Trumpcare sucks even more than it originally sucked, and it already sucked a whole lot.
  • Donald Trump did what Nixon did on the missing 18 minutes of tape. He absolutely deserves impeachment.
  • Is it too much to ask that he find a non-dictator to casually spill our secrets to? Even Netanyahu would be fine, once you’ve repaired that broken relationship.
  • It’s easy to balance the budget when you double-count 2 trillion$ of theoretical growth.
  • Remember how IT policy swung an election when the two candidates couldn’t have been any more different? I remember. (h/t Scott Lemieux)
  • “Have a kick-ass Holocaust!”
  • You know Carl Icahn? Carl Icahn was a bad human being, and now he is an even worse, corrupt human being.
  • The Supreme Court (including Clarence Thomas) did the right thing. We should try to get an anti-gerrymandering amendment into the Constitution when we get back in power.
  • Democrats are starting to win those special elections. The flood is coming.
  • Some jerk blew up an Ariana Grande concert. Rest in peace to all the victims who were unjustly killed.
  • “It’s a gold and honey trap, I’ve got for you toniiiiiiiiiight, Anthony Weiner!”
  • Richard Collins III was lynched by a white supremacist (h/t ShakeZula). Remember that the next time Black Lives Matter blocks traffic, or a football player kneels during the anthem.
  • I feel like being found innocent of a crime means that you don’t go to jail.
  • The first charter school strike is happening. Exciting times!
  • We are unfortunate in that our most accessible example of universal healthcare is Canadian single-payer, which might be the worst single-payer system. If only we were next to Australia.
  • China is the most insecure country on the planet.
  • How many German men changed their underwear daily in the ’60s? The answer might surprise you! Laundromats hate this! (The answer is five percent.)
  • Vince Gilligan needs to do a new show about nut theft.



The Senate Democrats’ outreach chair thinks Democrats are the nation’s biggest obstacle to progressive reform


Goddammit I’m doing it again. For every Bernie story I post in 2017, retroactive to January 1, I’ll donate 5$ to the League of Women Voters.

Having said that, look at this quote from an interview he did with Larry Wilmore:

[…] there is an element of the Democratic establishment who may give lip service to those ideas, but that’s not really what is in their heart of hearts.

The cynicism is breathtaking. There are no outs. It would be one thing if he thought that these reluctant progressives could be brought on to the movement. But he doesn’t say that and he has never said anything to that effect.

If the Democrats are just liars who will sabotage progressivism given the chance, then there is no working with them. All this does is set up (er, prolong) a showdown with the rest of the Democratic Party that the Sanders wing cannot possibly win. And then his supporters will abandon politics again, more cynical and angrier than before. He’s doing them wrong as well. This is what will happen if he keeps poisoning the water. This is a narrative of decline.

Let us think about how President Obama might have said it:

Even many members of my own party may be wary of passing a law like this. Now let me be clear, change isn’t easy. When it comes time to put ideas into practice I understand the temptation to back down. But backing down is not what the moment calls for. Backing down is not what we came here to do. Backing down is not what got us Social Security, or the Voting Rights Act, or Medicare.

Now there’s a glimpse of a better world. If you want a successful political movement, you can start by making politics feel less miserable. You make it feel like something which can give a life meaning, and then you show them the results. You don’t start by agreeing with the contention that the Democratic Party is the greatest obstacle to progressive reform in the country. The only out there is firebombing.

Why the hell is he still outreach chair?

Days 120, 121 and 122 of 1,461 (or 2,922)

Good weekend?

  • Imagine, if you will, that President Hillary Clinton fired James Comey and bragged about it to officials of a foreign government.
  • Michael Flynn is burnt toast.
  • It’s Jared. It’s Jared. The treasonous White House official in question has to be Jared.
  • If Joe Biden had been the Democratic nominee in 2016, I do think he would have won, because he didn’t suffer decades of Republican smears, and because he has a penis. But I have no idea what he’s trying to accomplish by saying that Hillary was the worse candidate.
  • All these non-Trump voters that the media was ignoring, and it takes a Canadian newspaper to finally interview them. Shameful. (h/t ShakeZula)
  • Loving v. Virginia has perhaps the most appropriate name in the history of court cases. Plus, Loving won.
  • What would happen if the English Premier League, with the most straightforward and equitable process for determining a champion out of all the major sports leagues, adopted a playoff? Wonderful chaos, IMO.
  • Tom Brady, who isn’t even the breadwinner of the family, has publicly called his own wife a liar, and didn’t even have the decency to do it himself.
  • If the great city of New Orleans is interested in replacing the statues they removed, they could consider someone from this list — “Category: Southern Unionists in the American Civil War.”


Day 119 of 1,461 (or 2,922)

Rest in peace, Chris Cornell.

  • Rest in pieces, Roger Ailes.
  • If I ever became National Security Adviser, I’d probably avoid doing what other countries, especially dictatorships, wanted me to do for money. But that’s just me.
  • If I ever thought that my party’s candidate was being paid by other countries, especially dictatorships, I’d probably do more than laugh about it with colleagues. But that’s just me.
  • Once this regime has ended, we need to increase the income tax, increase the capital gains tax and really, really increase the estate tax. No more Trumps.
  • Jason Chaffetz, Lord of the Jellyfish, is leaving Congress. Finally, he is serving the public.
  • Trump canceled his visit to Masada because he couldn’t land his helicopter on top. Of an ancient historical site. This man would literally wipe his butt with the Constitution.
  • Betty Jo Shelby killed Terence Crutcher and received no punishment. The problems exposed over the last eight years have not gone away and will get worse.
  • Net neutrality is another good thing that could go away soon. Both sides do it.
  • Finally, in the Department of I Can’t Believe This Is a Wikipedia Article, But It Is: “It’s not you, it’s me.”

Days 117 and 118 of 1,461 (or 2,922)

We live in interesting times.

But Her Emails 6But Her Emails 7

  • Donald Trump committed obstruction of justice by pressuring James Comey to drop the Russia investigation, then firing him when he didn’t. I linked to the New York Times, so you know this is serious.
  • So serious that the DOJ has finally appointed a special prosecutor.
  • Donald Trump betrayed one of our closest (and most annoying) allies just so he could impress the Russians. Impeach him.
  • He’s just an abysmal human being in every way.
  • PPP does the most entertaining polls, by far. This time: Does Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson have a chance against Trump in 2020? He does.
  • You’ve probably read “My Family’s Slave” by now, but I’ll add my recommendation: Read it. As a work of fiction it would be heartbreaking. As a work of journalism it’s that and infuriating. But I am glad the author came clean.
  • There’s some good news out of Philadelphia.
  • The history of “Buy American” is complicated and at times sordid. Working in These Times did an interesting interview about it.
  • Could it be that journalists care so much about what college students do because they miss college and haven’t gotten over it? I don’t know, but it’s an amusing theory.

In some cases, the obsession with inconsequential campus politics seems to be a way for journalists to relive their glory days. The campus — and particularly the Ivy League campus — is a sacrosanct place in the mind of the archetypal mainstream journalist: white, male, upper middle class, insecure, and (superficially) well-educated. Think Andy Bernard from The Office, the overqualified 30-something salesman who boasts of his Cornell degree at every opportunity.

  • Silicon Valley is the pit where cesspits send their cess.
  • Those big red balls outside Target are called “bollards” and they weigh two tons. Now you know!
  • In-N-Out is always compared to premium burger places like Five Guys and Shake Shack despite being much cheaper. In-N-Out is very good.
  • The New England Patriots will falsify medical information to win a Super Bowl. Vacate their championships.

Days 115 and 116 of 1,461 (or 2,922)

I thought today would be a slow news day.

But Her Emails 4But Her Emails 5

  • So, yeah. Trump shared classified information with Russian officials in order to impress them. I think 99.999% of the American population would be better at the job than he is.
  • I think I’ll be “adopting” Rodney Frelinghuysen’s district for 2018. What a pluperfect asshole.
  • Voter suppression helped swing the 2016 election. It is absolutely vital that efforts like Tom Perez’s or Jason Kander’s succeed.
  • Could you imagine being so horrible that you take to the streets to make sure a racist statue doesn’t get scrapped?
  • I thought the putz Richard Spencer was just a kid, but he’s almost 40! The Atlantic has an appropriately condemnatory profile.
  • Deaf (capitalized) culture is something amazing. Read about Gallaudet University’s football team.
  • Go Spurs, except for Manu Ginobili.
  • Rest in peace, Gorilla Grodd. 😦
  • The IPA was king. The IPA is no longer king. Bourbon is king. What will be king when bourbon is no longer king?