Sunday, July 15, 2018

I wouldn't send this guy to negotiate my car loan

This week, a dozen actual Russian agents, working for Putin, were indicted by the Department of Justice for interfering with the 2016 election that gave us Trump. Tomorrow, Trump will meet ALONE with Putin and likely only a Russian interpreter (not even an American translator) as he's done before.

In normal situations, it would be inappropriate for the President to meet with a foreign adversary without anyone else present, if nothing else to provide a second set of ears to make sure there was no misunderstanding of what was said. But for THIS President, who at the very least benefited from Russian interference and is under investigation for active collusion, meeting with Putin at all right now, let alone BY HIMSELF is absolutely unconscionable and, frankly, dangerous.

Trump is a terrible negotiator even in the best of times (not knowing anything and being too lazy to be brought up to speed tends to hamper negotiations) and these aren't the best of times. When asked about discussing extradition of the indicted agents with Putin, Trump said he hadn't thought about it. Honestly, we don't even know if Trump IS on our side against Putin. (Yes, we do. He's not.)

Nothing good can come of this. Americans, who expect the President to advocate on behalf of America, should be outraged.


Saturday, July 14, 2018

Those little slackers should pay to eat!

Is Trump unhappy with the competition?
This week, in a move that contradicted decades of research proving that breastfeeding benefits babies and mothers, the Trump administration rejected a World Health Organization resolution limiting the misleading marketing of formula, which—if replaced with breast milk—could save more than 800,000 infant lives a year.
Health officials were "shocked" and "stunned" by the news, The New York Times reported. But for the scholars who study this issue, nothing about this decision is surprising. The United States government, the largest purchaser of formula in the country, does more than market milk substitutes: It gives them away for free.  Link

"Party of Life" indeed.

GOP Morality

This is worth noting, again and again.

Jim Jordan is a Republican congressman currently being accused by at least a dozen former wrestlers that when he was an assistant wrestling coach, he stood by and allowed the coach to sexually molest the kids. Jordan denies it, and Republicans, most notably Trump, have stood by him.

What the Jim Jordan scandal tells us about GOP morality
Today, when allegations of this sort surface against a Democrat, the first impulse of those in the Democratic Party is to assume that the victims are probably telling the truth and ask whether the member should resign. That wasn’t always their response in the past, but now it is. The first impulse of Republicans when such a scandal touches their own, on the other hand, is to defend the member no matter what the facts suggest and charge that it’s a liberal conspiracy.
That may be partly because they all pledged their loyalty to a president who is on tape bragging about his ability to commit sexual assault with impunity (“When you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything.”), and who was credibly accused of sexual misconduct by a dozen women. Whatever the reasons, they haven’t caught up to the morality of the 21st century.  Link

If character or morals matter to you, remember that in November.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Just a reminder: Parties

The Republicans, who currently control the Congress, the Supreme Court, and the White House, represent a MINORITY OF AMERICANS.

Senate elections 2012-2016:

Republican votes: 102.3 million
Democratic votes: 117.4 million

15 million more Americans cast votes for Democrats in a Senate that is now controlled by a 51-to-49 GOP majority.

Presidential election 2016:

Republican votes: 62,985,134
Democratic votes: 65,853,652

The only thing the Republicans took with more votes was the House of Representatives in 2016, where they won 63,173,815 to 61,776,554. And despite winning by only 1.1%, they have 10.8% more seats.

This is intolerable in a democracy, especially the supposed greatest democracy on the planet.

Trump is right, the system is rigged. But it sure as hell isn't rigged for the Democrats. Or the majority of Americans.

Monday, July 09, 2018

I spent a lot of time thinking of the exact, appropriate response

Earlier today, traitor to our country, Senator Mitch McConnell, said this about Trump's Supreme Court appointment:
"Justice Kennedy’s resignation letter had barely arrived in the president’s hands before several of our Democratic colleagues began declaring their blanket opposition to anyone at all,” said McConnell.

“There’s not even a nominee yet,” he said with a laugh. “We should evaluate this president’s nominee fairly, based on their qualifications. And we should treat this process with the respect and the dignity that it deserves.”
This is the SAME Mitch McConnell who held open a Supreme Court seat for an entire year when Justice Scalia died, stealing the seat that President Obama had the right to fill. McConnell didn't even give Obama's appointee, Judge Merrick Garland, a hearing.

So, with all respect due to the Senate Majority Leader.

Sunday, July 08, 2018

Okay, why isn't he one of the Avengers?

Last week, Trump put up some simply awesome Tweets. Awesome in grammar. Awesome in self-awareness. Awesome in their understanding of how linear time works.

First up, let's examine his awesome ability to forge peace!

It is going well! Except that it really, really isn't.

North Korea has increased nuclear production at secret sites, say U.S. officials

There have been other "8 month" periods where North Korea hasn't had any launches or tests. That would be in 2015 and 2016, in the BEFORE TIMES.

Finally, let's think about the last sentence. "If not for me, we would now be at War with North Korea!" What does that actually mean? That President Hillary would have gone to war with NK? That doesn't seem likely, given her deep understanding of Diplomacy and how the world works and all. Does it mean that we were on the brink of war with NK during the Obama years? No, that is definitely not true. Does it mean that Trump's awesomeness kept himself from attacking NK? Hmm. Will require more thought to parse that one out. Then again, maybe he's just an idiot.

Next, there was this gem of a Tweet!

Yes, Harley Davidson made a yuge mistake when they crossed Trump by reacting rationally to European retaliatory tariffs by moving their European vehicle manufacturing to Europe. They made a mistake SO BIG, their sales went down a YEAR BEFORE THEY ANNOUNCED THE MOVE! 

That's our Pr*sident for you! He is so powerful that to cross him is to warp the very fabric of space-time. He's better than an Avenger, he's basically Thanos with all six of the Infinity Stones.

Except Thanos is kinder. And more compassionate. And smarter. And not as crazy. And better looking.

But otherwise, yeah, he's Thanos.

Friday, July 06, 2018

How did the party of Lincoln become the child-stealing, race-baiting, vote suppressing, racial segregating party of today?

Modern Republicans like to point out that the KKK was started by Democrats (true) and that Republicans are the party of Lincoln, who freed the slaves (also true). This is disingenuous, of course, because since Lincoln, the two parties have completely switched positions on civil rights. It is inarguable that now it's the Republicans who are threatening the civil rights of any people who are not white, while the Democrats are the party defending the civil rights of ALL people. (For example, see PUERTO F'ING RICO).

But don't take my word for it. Check out these really great Twitter threads by Kevin M. Kruse outlining the whole flip-flop by the parties on civil rights, from the Civil War to today.

The Parties' Switch

And for a list of individual politicians.

Sure, Let's Do This

Both are a great read.

Thursday, July 05, 2018

It's a METAPHOR people.

The Pixar short that runs before Incredibles 2 is called Bao. Directed by Chinese-Canadian director Domee Shi.
The short tells the tale of an aging woman who’s dealing with empty-nest syndrome. When one of her dumplings comes to life, she’s afforded another chance at motherhood. However, she soon learns that the dumpling child, like most things in life, won’t stay “cute and small forever.”  Link

Apparently, a bunch of stupid (white) people were confused by the story. Many of them expressed their confusion on Twitter (click on the link to see). Needless to say, while the story resonated especially strongly with Asian immigrants who recognized elements of their own lives, the emotions in the story are universal and shouldn't be confusing at all. The story reflects the human experience. It doesn't have to be about white people to be understood or to be universal.

I saw the short again last night (yes, I saw Incredibles 2 again) and it made me cry.

Think, people. Think and empathize and you'll get along fine. Plus, the world will be a better place.

Sunday, July 01, 2018

Garbage out, garbage in

This weekend, I installed a new garbage disposal in our kitchen.

Here's the old (dead) one.

And here's the new one. 

I ordered the new one from Amazon earlier this week. The installation took some time but was reasonably straightforward and easy. I had a problem getting a couple of parts together, so after getting frustrated, I searched the Internet and found a video that explained the exact problem and how to solve it. Worked like a charm. Thanks Internet!

The new one has a power plug and I was going to take the plug off and hardwire it like the old one. But I decided it was easier to just put in an outlet.

Everything seems to be working and I am suitably proud of myself. We can now, once again, chop garbage up into little bits.

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Nicely Said

This makes me feel a little better. Just a little.

Well said, Seth.

Hi! We're doomed!

Today sucked. The Supreme Court has been issuing terrible decisions for the past week and today was no exception. But Trump getting a new Supreme Court pick is just . . .

His stupid supporters cheering for something that's going to make life objectively worse for most Americans, limiting civil rights, exacerbating income inequality, eliminating women's right to choose, refusing to check an out of control autocrat, just makes me ill. These people are too stupid to know they've been scammed. Are we great yet?

All we can do is RESIST.  And VOTE.

Everything depends on November.


(Oh, and Mitch McConnell is a traitor to this country and the Constitution and I hope Hell actually exists so he can burn in it forever.)

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

A test of your humanity

Here's the test.

Are you opposed to the Trump policy of separating children from families at the United States border?

It's that simple.

What the Administration is doing is monstrous, a violation of human rights akin to early Nazi actions against the Jews. They're not only terrorizing children and hurting families, but they're lying about it, scapegoating the Democrats and the families themselves, and ignoring the wishes of the vast majority of Americans.

Republicans have always called themselves the party of "family values", "Christians" who "value life", but they have been complicit in every facet of this nightmare. A MAJORITY of Republican voters APPROVE of ICE's actions. Let that sink in. A pollster calls your home, describes what's happening, and you tell them that you APPROVE. That says something about the Republicans and their "morality".

If you can justify this in your own mind. If you can argue that they deserve it. Or that they're criminals. Or that they're responsible for this atrocity committed against themselves, you have failed the basic test of your humanity: understanding, empathy and compassion. If you do not oppose this, you have embraced evil.

It's that simple.

This action will go down in history alongside the Trail of Tears, slavery, Japanese-American Internment, and syphilis experiments on black men.

We are monsters if we allow this to continue.

Incredibles 2

You may have noticed that I haven't posted my thoughts on Incredibles 2 yet. Honestly, it's because I'm still thinking about the experience. 


I *think* the movie was brilliant. A direct continuation of the original, it continues on with the story from the very moment the first Incredibles ended. And right away I loved how the encounter with the Underminer really surprised me; I didn't expect it to go the way it did.

The rest of the story hits some of the same story beats as the original, but from a different perspective. And I really loved certain elements of the villain storyline, but I won't say more because I don't want to ruin anything if you haven't seen it.

I should also point out that the action scenes were really well done and the animation what you expect from Pixar. The characters are more expressive here, which takes some getting used to, and the look of the film is decidedly more dark, which I really appreciated.

I may post more once I've seen it again. And, yes, I will definitely be seeing it again soon.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Cinemus Interruptus

Uh, okay. The 5:40PM showing was sold out. First time that's happened in a long time. So now we have tickets for 7:45PM.

For a little bit longer, there will still be only one The Incredibles in my head.

Sorry for the delay.

An historic moment in Ipecac history

I am now in the last hour of my life, where there aren't two The Incredibles movies in my head.

See you on the other side.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Michael Scott would be better

While there's nothing funny about a murderous dictator gaining legitimacy by meeting with a wannabe dictator, I did find this pretty funny.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

State media and deals that aren't deals

I apologize for asking you to watch this.

State TV indeed.

I would also like to point out that the recently cancelled Iran Agreement that Trump killed because it was the "worst deal ever":

- Took years to negotiate
- Involved the United States, Iran, Russia, China, the United Kingdom, France, Germany and the E.U.
- Eliminated all of Iran's weapons grade uranium
- Disallows further refinement of uranium to weapons grade
- Includes rigorous and ongoing monitoring and verification protocols
- Removed sanctions on Iran as their compliance was verified

Despite all of the above resulting in Iran halting the research and development of their NUCLEAR WEAPONS PROGRAM, the Republicans have attacked it since day one and Trump pulled the U.S. out of it.

On the other hand, Republicans and Trump are cheering his five hour "summit" with Kim Jung Un that produced a one page general outline of recycled, stale talking points that North Korea has been promoting for about twenty years while violating the same talking points.

And all we had to give up was everything North Korea wanted.

Heckuva job, Trumpie.

Oh, and if you didn't see the North Korean White House propaganda film aired at the summit, you really should.  (I apologize for asking you to watch this as well.)

Reminder: this was produced by the White House (of the United States of America).

Sunday, June 10, 2018

In which I agree with Fox News

Below is from Fox & Friends co-host Abby Huntsman.

See if you can spot the mistake.
“This is history,” Huntsman said over video showing Trump arriving in Singapore ahead of Tuesday’s meeting with Kim.
“Regardless of what happens in that meeting between the two dictators, what we are seeing right now ― this is history,” she continued.  Link

When you're right, you're right.

Friday, June 08, 2018

This Week in Dumb-Stupid - June 8, 2018

Damn but this was an especially exhausting week.

Dumb-Stupid the First

First up, The Pr*sident of the United States thinks that Canada burned down the White House during the War of 1812!

When Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau asked Trump why he would consider Canada a "national security threat" (Trump's excuse for the escalating trade war with OUR ALLIES), Trump "quipped":
"Didn't you guys burn down the White House?"  Link
In fact, they did not. Canada wasn't even its own country until 1931.

For the record, the British burned down the White House. Since we were at war with Great Britain during the War of 1812, that makes perfect sense.

Dumb-Stupid the Second

Next up, you may be aware that next week, Trump will be meeting with Kim Jong Un of North Korea for a circle-jerk photo op summit. South and North Korea have a long and bitter history and one would think that it will take a thorough knowledge of that history, as well as knowing the goals and strategies of the various stakeholders in the region like China, Japan, and Russia, to be successful.

Or you could, you know, just wing it.
“I think I'm very well prepared, I don't think I have to prepare very much. It's about attitude. It's about willingness to get things done.”  Link
This, ladies and gentleman, is the man that a minority of Americans chose to represent us on the world stage. A guy so lazy and intellectually deficient that he won't even do his homework for a summit with a rogue nuclear power who threatens millions of lives in South Korea, most of Asia and even Hawaii. 

Dumb-Stupid the Third

You may recall how we had a particularly nasty hurricane season in 2017 (thanks, climate change!) where hurricanes devastated Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico. Due to the incompetence and criminal negligence of the Administration, Puerto Rico is, in fact, still reeling with around 5,000 deaths, hundreds of thousands still without power, and another hurricane season fast approaching.

But not to worry! Trump went to FEMA to discuss hurricane preparedness and brought along his entire cabinet! Problem solved! They won't drop the ball this year!
President Trump had a lot else on his mind, turning the closed-door discussion into soliloquies on his prowess in negotiating airplane deals, his popularity, the effectiveness of his political endorsements, the Republican Party’s fortunes, the vagaries of Defense Department purchasing guidelines, his dislike of magnetized launch equipment on aircraft carriers, his unending love of coal and his breezy optimism about his planned Singapore summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Link
To be fair, who DOESN'T love coal? He apparently hijacked the meeting so badly that there was no actual discussion of FEMA readiness.

Here he is talking about magnetized launch equipment on aircraft carriers, because it's super relevant to hurricane prep.
"Part of it is, they want to have all new. Instead of having the system that throws the aircraft off the [ship], which was always steam. They now have magnets. They’re using magnets instead of steam. . . . They spent hundreds of millions of dollars, I’m hearing not great things about it. It’s frankly ridiculous.”  Link
I cannot wait for him to solve this one. These magnetic launchers have really been keeping me up at night. Ridiculous is an understatement, am I right? WHAT WERE THEY THINKING?!?

I feel so much better, just knowing he's in charge of our safety. Indeed, our very lives rest in his tiny, tiny hands.

Dumb-Stupid the Last

When Trump first took over the White House, he called it a "dump". Now we may know why.
Mika Brzezinski, who has herself been a target of Donald Trump’s misogynistic attacks, revealed one more hypocritical tidbit about the serial philandering, sexual assaulter-in-chief: his #1 complaint about living in the White House is he cannot access porn.  Link
This is the man supported by Christian evangelicals. This is the man supported by the "Family Values" party. This is the man that the red states have turned into their very own Orange Jesus.

I would imagine he can't access porn because the White House has a secure, government wifi network and there are government and security regs about what can be accessed. So no porn for Trump. I certainly don't care whether or not he accesses porn, but the hypocrisy of his supporters is noted, again and again.

No wonder he spends so much time at Mar a Lago.

And that's this week in Dumb-Stupid. Please shoot me.

Thursday, June 07, 2018

Solo: A Star Wars Story

A short review, before it leaves theaters.

I enjoyed it. Solo was a fun adventure tale that was different from every previous Star Wars movie. The story was just a tad heavy on the fan service, but I wouldn't mind seeing a sequel. I'm sad that it's not doing very well.

And Donald Glover as Lando was awesome.

Wednesday, June 06, 2018

Most Patriotic President Ever Says Patriotic Things!

Yesterday, at his seven minute long, mostly attended by Republican staffers, pity-party that the Super Bowl Champs, the Philadelphia Eagles, didn't want to attend, he said this:
And our country has never done better than it’s doing right now. Never. Record numbers at every outpost. You take a look at what’s going on: Lowest unemployment numbers we’ve had. Lowest African American unemployment in the history of our country. Lowest Hispanic numbers in the history of our country. Lowest numbers for women in 21 years.
We’ve created $7 trillion of value in our country since the election. We’re the largest economy in the world, and getting a lot larger, and fast. It’s happened very quickly. Actually, quicker than I even thought.
Now, to be fair, there was a point where Black unemployment was zero. But, don't worry, Republicans are doing everything they can to return us to those days!

Let's check on those numbers.

Guess there's only one thing to say.

Sunday, June 03, 2018

Roseanne versus Samantha Bee

Samantha Bee drew criticism from Republicans this week when she called Ivanka Trump a " feckless cunt" on her show, Full Frontal. Republicans gleefully compared her to Roseanne Barr, whose show was cancelled after she made a racist tweet. They have demanded that Bee's show be cancelled too.

Note to Republicans, something all sensible people know: The two things are NOT the same.

Samantha Bee was criticizing Ivanka for posting a tone-deaf picture of herself and her little boy, while ignoring the ongoing human rights crisis at our southern border where U.S. government agents are ripping children away from their parents. Ivanka is supposed to be the rational, calming influence on her father and she has apparently done nothing to prevent other families from being ripped apart, while advertising her privileged life.

What Ivanka did was the equivalent of this.

NAZI propaganda celebrating "Aryan" families
while they were destroying non-Aryan families.

Samantha Bee was right to call Ivanka out on it, and while her language may not have been PG-13, if you get more outraged by the word "cunt" than you do that children are being taken away from their parents, you need to reevaluate your priorities and, in the meantime, shut the hell up.

What Roseanne did was out and out racist. Her victim didn't deserve it, nor did millions of African Americans. She deserved to lose her show.

Samantha Bee was trying to get the attention of someone standing by while atrocities are being committed. She doesn't deserve to lose her show. In fact, while you may not like her language, she deserves to be applauded for using her platform to try and change terrible U.S. policy.

Republicans, learn how to differentiate between someone punching up to criticize an individual who deserves it, and being a stinking racist. They're not the same thing.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

In the Navy

The position of President of the U.S. is supposed to be one of dignity, integrity, and representing the 300+ million Americans in the best traditions of the country.

Then there's the Trump way.
President Donald Trump misrepresented what he’s doing for members of the armed forces when he spoke Friday to graduates of the United States Naval Academy.  Link
Keep in mind that he's talking to Naval Academy graduates, young women and men who have volunteered to serve this country at risk of their lives and who live up to very strict moral standards.
“Going to have new equipment and well-deserved pay raises. We just got you a big pay raise. First time in 10 years. We got you a big pay increase. First time in over 10 years. I fought for you. That was the hardest one to get, but you never had a chance of losing.”
This is an out and out baldfaced LIE.

Here's the AP:
THE FACTS: That’s not right. U.S. military members have gotten a pay raise every year for the past 10 years and several have been larger than this year’s 2.6 percent increase. Pay increases in 2008, 2009 and 2010, for example, were all 3.4 percent or more.
But wait, there's more!
“We have now the lowest number of ships that we’ve had since World War I, and very soon you’re going to get to 355 beautiful ships. 355. That’s almost a couple of hundred more ships.”
This is stupid as well as a LIE. It's stupid because comparing the number of modern, sophisticated warships we have today to the number of our WWI ships is just moronic and has been so every time the Republicans have done it over the past ten years. Our modern ships are a little more capable than those of a century ago.

As for the LIE, here's AP again.
THE FACTS: No it isn’t [a couple hundred more]. The Navy now has 283 ships.
And a 355-vessel battle fleet is not going to be achieved “very soon.” The Navy plans to reach 355 in the 2050s while saying that could happen in the 2030s if it gets more money and extends the normal life of ships in the fleet.
This is the Commander-in-Chief, the man who holds these graduates lives in his minuscule little hands, and he's either straight up lying to them, or too stupid to know that he's wrong.

Either way it's appalling and an affront to the service to which these graduates have dedicated their lives.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Racist asshats don't deserve a TV show (your daily dose of schadenfreude)

Not cool:

(She's calling Obama Administration official and African American, Valerie Jarrett, an ape).


Puerto Whoco?

Remember Puerto Rico, where every resident is an American citizen and Trump tossed paper towels at them after hurricane Maria while bragging about how few people were killed?
"Every death is a horror, but if you look at a real catastrophe like Katrina, and you look at the hundreds and hundreds of people that died, and you look at what happened here, with a storm that was really, totally overpowering — nobody's ever seen anything like this — and what is your death count as of this moment? Seventeen?"
"You can be very proud, 16 people versus in the thousands,"
Cross included in background for extra dose of hypocrisy.

Turns out, estimating death counts before the emergency is over isn't very accurate.
Over 4,600 people died in Puerto Rico during the aftermath of Hurricane Maria ― more than 70 times the official death toll ― according to a new Harvard study released Tuesday.  Link
Those ingrates! Don't they know that dying on Trump's watch makes him look bad? How dare they!

Ha! I'm kidding. No one's paying attention to Puerto Rico any more so those 4,600 dead people can't make Trump look bad!

Of course, many of those deaths can be directly attributable to the piss poor response of the federal government under Trump's direction. President George W. Bush took a huge political hit because of his incompetent handling of hurricane Katrina, but Trump's many, many, many scandals have shifted attention away from the abandonment of these American citizens by their elected representatives.

Which leads to this.

Link to interactive timer.

Puerto Rico, call us when you're a "real catastrophe".