Days 60 and 61 of 1,461 (or 2,922)

Look on this video, ye mighty, and despair!

  • Donald J. Trump is the worst person in America. There is nothing mitigating.
  • Florida is the worst state in America, at least until Ohio regains the crown.
  • NO PUPPET NO PUPPET YOU’RE THE PUPPET
  • Vanity Fair ran an article back in February on James Comey and the FBI. It’s worth revisiting. The New York field office seems like a rogue unit.
  • To paraphrase Al Franken: “If you’re poor, it’s your fault. Anything else, it’s Clinton’s.” Still holds true today.
  • Ronald Reagan blamed trees for pollution, but Rep. Scott Perry (WHAT POLITICAL PARTY DO YOU THINK HE IS-PA) has gone above and beyond to blame God Himself. I guess everything’s OK, then.
  • Quick, name a woman scientist! Was it Marie Curie? No disrespect meant to the great Madame Curie, but science is full of many other accomplished women. Amanda Phingbodhipakkiya is working to tell their stories.
  • You know that magnificent infographic on Napoleon’s invasion of Russia that Edward Tufte gushes over? Learn about its history.
  • An F. Scott Fitzgerald story from 1920 has finally been published for the first time. It’s pretty funny.
  • Statistical analysis of famous authors can yield interesting results if done right. It turns out your teacher was right — adverbs are awful.
  • If you want evidence that humanity has outstayed its time on earth, “marriage proposal planner” is a good place to start.
Advertisements

Days 56, 57, 58 and 59 of 1,461 (or 2,922)

So this place hasn’t burned down yet…

  • Happy Belated St. Patrick’s Day! Let the shame of Canada’s Guinness blunder endure forever.
  • The Republican budget will kill Americans. This is not an accident. This is what they want. They want us dead.
  • Things worth spending money on: a giant wall that won’t work. Things not worth spending money on: food for senior citizens. This will end well.
  • Trump’s budget cuts will annihilate several programs that benefit Michiganders, but a defense contractor might stay in the state, maybe, possibly. Worth it!
  • Nothing about the Trump budget is good.
  • Trumpcare, a.k.a. “the Nickelback of health reform,” will destroy Medicaid. If I had to guess, that more than anything is what Paul Ryan hopes to achieve with it.
  • DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION DISTRACTION
  • Regarding the “Deep State”:

    American security forces have destabilized governments, trampled on civil liberties, and caused innocent lives to be lost. But these outcomes have generally been instigated or approved by the executive branch. In this way, the FBI, the CIA, and the intelligence community generally are resources that amplify the reach and intentions of American presidents, rather than undermining them. Conspiracy theories about the Deep State distract us from the real dangers America faces with a president Trump in charge of these intelligence services. The main danger from the FBI and CIA is not that they will overthrow Trump in some Oliver Stone-style conspiracy. It’s that they will do his bidding.

  • An interesting essay on the rise of cashless transactions and plastic cards. They make the excellent point that cash has no middle men between us and the Federal Reserve, while electronic transactions are always mediated by the private sector. What does this mean for us? Read the essay.
  • Chris Christie roots for the Cowboys and Notre Dame (his daughter’s school), even though his son went to Princeton, where he sits on the Board of Trustees. New Jersey ill needs a governor like him.
  • Once upon a time, the NIT was the most important basketball tournament in America.
  • How much does actual Atlantic City property cost? Oceans rise and empires fall, but Mediterranean Avenue remains the cheapest and Boardwalk is still the most expensive. I am glad.
  • Speaking of Monopoly, farewell, wheelbarrow, thimble and shoe. Hello bird domination!
  • “What, Exactly, Does ‘Ideological Diversity’ Mean?”:

    Pundits are getting distracted by the dubious tactical approaches of a small minority of protesters instead of focusing on why they’re so upset in the first place — because discredited, offensive, and abhorrent (often right-wing) fringe viewpoints are now getting treated like they’re merely “ideologically diverse” instead of poisonous.

  • If you ever go to Arkansas, the Crater of Diamonds State Park is a fun place to visit. You probably won’t do as well as a recent visitor, though. Lucky bastard.

Day 55 of 1,461 (or 2,922)

Yesterday’s news, today!

Tom the Dancing Bug 1329 trump protects americans
Source: Boing Boing
  • One of the best things I’ve read lately is Rick Perlstein’s thoughtful essay on smartness. It’s hard to quote, so you should just read it all. And everything he writes. (h/t Your Moments of Zen)
  • I appreciate the adequate job the media has done in explaining how awful Trumpcare is. Would that they could have done so when the public had a chance to make an informed decision about it.
  • On Trumpcare:

    Health care politics resonate like nothing else. They cut across President Trump’s coalition like a scythe. If you’re looking for the political battle that will damage President Trump and his party it is Obamacare repeal. Of course, there are few issues before the political nation today that will more affect the lives of people across the country, especially the most vulnerable, the least politically powerful. So there’s no trade-off between “politics” and things that [affect] people’s lives.

  • In yet another example of ALL PROJECTION ALL THE TIME Trump had UAW members bused in for his Michigan speech.
  • For a dangerous criminal that needed killin’, Michael Brown sure had a lot of lies told about him to justify his murder. Rest in peace. 😦
  • I’m skeptical that West Virginia votes 3-to-1 for Republicans because they’re all closet socialists. So from a basic resource allocation perspective, primarying Joe Manchin seems like a waste of time. And yes, he is better than any Republican that would replace him. Going after Feinstein, Carper, or (I’m sad to say) Kaine and Stabenow may make more sense.
  • Unanimity may itself be evidence of error. I think. My appreciation of Bayesian thinking exceeds my understanding. (h/t Jess Brooks at FAQ)
  • If nothing else, America can serve as a terrible example for others. Good work, Netherlands.
  • Religious tests are unconstitutional. Nice try, Trump.
  • Ahahahaha.

    25. Is there a Pulitzer Prize logo?

    No, there is no logo for The Pulitzer Prize.

    26. Where can I find information on the Nobel Prizes?

    The Nobel Prizes are in no way affiliated with The Pulitzer Prizes. Please check the Nobel Prize website for information.

Day 54 of 1,461 (or 2,922)

Stella was here. I was kind of disappointed.

  • I was also a little disappointed in Rachel Maddow’s story on Trump’s tax returns. But revolutions take time. This is a start.
  • Trumpcare should primarily be seen as a destruction of Medicaid so wealthy people can pay less in taxes. Robbing and killing the poor to feed the rich. (h/t Scott Lemieux at Lawyers, Guns & Money)
  • Steve King continues to be a delusional racist.
  • Corey Lewandowski is running a protection racket for companies that don’t want Trump to tweet about them. Donald J. Trump is the worst president in American history. (h/t Anne Laurie at Balloon Juice)
  • The Chinese company Anbang, which may or may not be owned by the government, is forgiving 200,000,000$ of debt that Jared Kushner owes on the property they just bought. And the Kushners are retaining a stake. How generous!
  • Joe Barton, Republican from Texas, is the kind of guy who tells his own constituents to shut up. Wouldn’t you feel proud to have him represent you in Congress?
  • Meet the woke misogynist:

    “His true kink seemed to be tricking her into it.”

  • FiveThirtyEight has a fun article about the difficulties of colonizing Mars. I always liked the idea of sending a souped-up zeppelin to float in the atmosphere of Venus.

Day 53 of 1,461 (or 2,922)

Stella is here.

  • Once more with feeling: THE ACA WAS NOT A REPUBLICAN PLAN!
  • For starters, the ACA was not designed to murder millions of Americans, like Paul Ryan’s AHCA. Paul Ryan will kill you to give more money to billionaires.
  • The cracks in the healthcare system and the flaws in the ACA itself show why health insurance really shouldn’t be a for-profit industry. Healthcare should be a public good. But the Republicans do not seem to understand how insurance works.
  • The Kushners are getting an amazingly sweet deal from a Chinese firm for their building at (I am telling the truth) 666 Fifth Avenue. I WONDER WHY THAT IS.
  • Petty and vindictive. Good traits to have in the most powerful man that’s ever lived.
  • Sean Spicer is a racist and a coward. He treats Americans as intruders in their own country because of the color of their skin.
  • The media should not be laughing when Sean Spicer lies brazenly. Especially when the joke isn’t even funny.
  • Congratulations to the Washington Post!
  • Keith Ellison offered some constructive criticism for the looking-for-excuses-to-quit component of the left. It’s nice to have him on our side.
  • The DeVoses have sucked for a long, long time and did a lot of work to ruin Michigan before they decided to ruin education. Read this illustrated essay for more details.
  • For Women’s History Month, learn about four remarkable Asian-American women whom you probably did not study in school.
  • Only Texas could turn an anti-littering slogan into an obnoxious and arrogant motto.
  • “Xenophobia” is a very young word indeed. Its predecessor was “misoxenie,” which sounds pretty cool in its own right.
  • Samuel L. Jackson had some controversial thoughts on black British actors being cast in American films. I blame Britain.
  • Finally, tonight’s Wikipedia article is not funny. It concerns a serious issue that is killing America: “Comprised of.”

Days 48, 49, 50, 51 and 52 of 1,461 (or 2,922)

Thank you for your patience.

  • Probably the most disgusting story from the last five days is Steve King’s embrace of white supremacy. Has Iowa no shame?
  • The Russian ambassador sure is forgettable for such a popular guy.
  • Remember, Trump has done nothing you can point to as evidence that he isn’t compromised by Russian interests.
  • The smoke is overwhelming.
  • They lie to us because they have no respect for us.
  • Trump is already the worst president in American history.
  • Trumpcare is an utter disgrace, and the Republicans know it.
  • If there’s one thing that can help us in saving the ACA, it’s Trump’s lack of interest in actually presiding over the country he’s responsible for.
  • Villain team-ups never work out.
  • There are a whole bunch of vacancies in the federal government that Trump has no intention of filling, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t infesting federal agencies with his cronies.
  • When I think of wastes of money, I think of disease control and public health.
  • Evangelical Christians do not know what persecution is.
  • Chris Christie actually proposed something, er, good. Huh.
  • Vox discussed a study that categorized candidate ads by whether they were about policy or personality. Ignoring the facts that the media never covered policy during the election, and that Trump’s defective personality definitely should have been attacked, the study found that Trump’s ads in 2016 were more about policy than Obama’s in 2008. I’m sorry, but that methodology must have some grievous errors.
  • It’s been eclipsed by things even worse, but the Daily Caller is still a worthless virtual rag.
  • For your perusal: the Town Hall project.
  • International Women’s Day happened while I was not posting. Read some horrible, dumb comments powerful men have made about women.
  • Have you ever wondered about the origin of “scientist”? It was coined to describe a woman.
  • From The Ringer:

    They loaded into a car, Tiara drifting off to sleep while Patience and Akyra bounced to the radio. Right around midnight, they pulled up and saw the building. They grabbed each other and squealed. The sign stood high and bright, inviting. This was it. This was perfect. The club was called Pulse.

  • Dentistry really shouldn’t be so segregated from the rest of medicine, but some accidents of history have caused it to be. It’s an interesting article!
  • TurboTax is great, but the problems it solves are partly of its own creation. Support Elizabeth Warren’s bill.
  • Britain sucks. More on that later.
  • Articles about 1-seeds and 16-seeds that omit Princeton-Georgetown also suck.
  • Robert Sikoryak is a lunatic who adapted the iTunes Terms and Conditions into a graphic novel that pays homage to various comic book legends. Check it out.
  • The Nintendo Switch cannot be used near aquariums. The Nintendo Switch is a failure.
  • I know how you feel, God. I know how you feel.
  • Your Wikipedia article of the night: “Douglas the camel.” Douglas was a traitor to his country.

Whew!

Days 46 and 47 of 1,461 (or 2,922)

Persist.

  • This year marks the 52nd anniversary of the Selma-to-Montgomery marches. There are few ways of commemorating them less appropriate than pushing voter ID laws at the Brown Chapel African Methodist Episcopal Church, but Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill was up to the task.
  • Barack Obama is too decent to sue Trump for libel, but I wish he would.
  • Barack Obama was also too decent to prostitute the presidency for a private club that he owned. No such luck anymore.
  • Trump’s new travel ban is still discriminatory and illegal.
  • A truly abhorrent scandal in the Marines is developing. It’s very sad.
  • Tom Perez seems to be liked by everyone he works with, including Keith Ellison, who collaborated with him long before the DNC race. I like Tom Perez. (h/t Erik Loomis at Lawyers, Guns & Money)

    “The Administration, and specifically Secretary Perez, worked closely with and listened closely with Mr. Ellison and the Progressive Caucus as we moved forward on initiatives [to help] federal contract workers and hold federal contractors accountable,” former Assistant Secretary of Labor for Congressional and Intergovernmental Affairs Adri Jayaratne told Payday. “Tom always made sure that everyone’s voices were heard on every issue whether or not they were in agreement. He felt that was a responsibility he had to have.”

    Many in labor are hoping that the Perez-Ellison relationship at the DNC will follow a similar pattern.

    “The Perez-Ellison combination could be a dynamic duo. The truth is that those two worked together to get the most progressive federal labor policy done in decades,” says Geevarghese. “It was Ellison, who stood on the picket lines to call attention to the need to raise standards for contract workers, while it was Secretary Perez on the inside who listened to the workers, who met with these workers, listened to these workers, and helped craft those executive orders.”

  • Lots and lots of ACA stuff today. First off, under the Republican plan insurance company CEOs will finally get the massive tax breaks they deserve. Oh joy.
  • Paul Ryan is fine with destroying the individual market and murdering you so that rich people can get tax cuts.
  • Jason Chaffetz is also fine with murdering you. Shouldn’t have bought that iPhone, moocher!
  • Medicaid is one of the best things our country has done, and the Medicaid expansion was the best part of the ACA. So the Republicans must destroy it.
  • It’s a veritable golden shower of Russia information leaking out. This time we learned that the Trump campaign approved of Carter Page’s trips to Moscow last July.
  • Nobody genuinely likes Uber. That will be their deserved downfall.

    If Uber stalls, it isn’t going to be saved by a loyal consumer fan base. There is no stickiness to Uber. It has no frequent-rider program. It has no social component. It prevents users from forming bonds with drivers. No one gets a heightened sense of self by identifying as an Uber rider versus some competitor. We’ll stick with Uber as long as it continues to get us where we want to go at a price we like. Someone else comes along with a better service or lower price, we’ll use it.

  • I’m pretty darned upset that speculative fiction about Trump not becoming president has to be a thing. But this story was worth reading.
  • I’ve said a few times that there’s no such thing as color, and one day I’ll elaborate. But this article proves my point.
  • During World War II, when the Germans conquered Denmark, chemist Georgy de Hevesy, himself a future Nobel laureate, dissolved two Nobel medals in acid to prevent them from being confiscated and their owners executed. What happened to the medals in the end? Read the story!
  • And finally, a magnificent Wikipedia article on “concert etiquette.” The photo caption is exemplary.