Friday, July 31, 2015

America's Worst Humans

Erick Erickson

Crazy Policies

There are "left wing" policies that probably aren't popular. There are left wing policies that perhaps could be popular if there were enough people championing them and making the case for them, but that's trickier. And then there are left wing policies that are genuinely popular, which the media treats as totally craaaaaaazyy commie socialism despite that fact.
Everyone sensible agrees it would be madness to make Corbyn leader, because no one could ever win an election with his policies. For example, he argues the railways should be renationalised, and you’ll never win votes with ideas like that. The last Labour leader to fight an election promising to renationalise the railways was Blair in 1997, promising “there will be a publicly owned and publicly accountable railway system under a Labour government”.

The British Press Will Monster Anyone

But only when it's a useless benefit scrounging member of the House of Lords is there anguished soul-searching about the inhumanity of it all.
Am I alone in having some sympathy for Lord Sewel (aka Lord Coke, Lord Sewer, The Cocaine Peer, Baron Sewel of Orange Bra and, doubtless, plenty of nastier nicknames in pubs across the land)?

Yes. And your column also missed this bit:
Equally damaging, he is alleged to have made a sweeping racial slur suggesting Asian women “look sort of innocent but you know they’re whores”.

The Clinton Rules

What went on at the NYT is even more horrible than I assumed.

It's The Other Person's Fault

Every agency is starting to blame every other agency for the Pope visit clusterfuck.

It might not be a clusterfuck! But the PR has been, and not because of meddling "little people" bloggers or similar. Want to clear the air, then clear it.

People live here. People work here. People work here who probably need to get to work to handle the Pope visit, directly or indirectly. Fix the reality, and fix the communications. All of the communicated plans have been nuts.

Morning Thread

Thursday, July 30, 2015


This never occurred to anyone before?
The cash exodus is a small piece of a bigger puzzle over why — despite two major international bailouts — the Greek economy is in worse shape and more deeply in debt. It is a politically charged issue that will color the negotiations on a new financial assistance package worth €86 billion.

Much of the previous bailout funds have gone to pay off Greek bonds held by private investors and other eurozone governments, rather than stoke growth. Within Greece, the money was supposed to help replenish banks’ capital, to get them lending to revive the moribund economy. Instead, it sat in banks’ coffers as bad debts piled up, and it bought time for Greeks and foreign investors to get their money out.

It is such a puzzle. I am puzzled. Are you puzzled? I do not like green eggs and ham.

Thursday Night

Tomorrow is....!

Happy Hour Thread

easy steak recipe: cover in harissa, let it marinate for a couple of hours, cook.

works for lamb too.

Yah Not Actually How It Works

You aren't forced to pay your staff the minimum you need to in order to hire them/keep them around.

Though nobody’s keeping a formal tally of unfilled positions, chefs at restaurants from casual to ambitious say Seattle’s growth—and related circumstances like high rents and insufficient transit—leaves their kitchens seriously short staffed. Our breakneck civic expansion has produced a multitude of new restaurants, but no corresponding influx of cooks—the men and women who endure hours of physical work for modest pay, who actually dice the onions and fire that cod entree.


The scarcity means those cooks, especially the quality ones, command a few bucks more per hour than they used to. Meanwhile bosses simultaneously cheer the idea of talented employees earning more money and ponder how to absorb those costs well ahead of Seattle’s graduated $15 minimum wage schedule.

If "bosses" really "cheer the idea of talented employees earning more money" they could just, you know, pay them more money.


He Could Win, Or He Could Lose, Based On Whichever Calvinball Rules We Put In Place

I hope reporters know this kind of coverage is just stupid.
Mr. Trump could come away a winner if he makes cogent points without sounding too hostile, presenting himself as more of a serious-minded, anti-establishment voice in a primary crowded with career Republican politicians. But there are risks for him if he turns the debate stage in Cleveland into another episode of the reality show his campaign has sometimes resembled.

Or maybe if he bites the head off a bat he'll poll at 158%? If he shows up in a bathrobe and slippers it'll be over? Probably his best bet is to summarize Ulysses in a sonnet written by him and performed in a Geordie accent?

All this stuff is just made up.


It is a bit scary, if not surprising, that so many people think The Donald is awesome because he's an asshole and yells at people, that he's ahead in the polls because he's a better asshole than Chris Christie.

Too many people want to put assholes in charge. They think they'll deliver a righteous asskicking to those who deserve a righteous asskicking (not them of course). It doesn't usually work out that way.

"Moderate Insurgents"

You don't have to take sides in any particular cause/conflict to see that the concept is fucking idiotic.
Mr. Hassan’s trainees were mainly from villages within the 68-mile strip along the Turkish border that the moderate insurgents are supposed to seize, and had long been slated for deployment there. But, Mr. Hassan said, they are so few “they can barely cover 200 meters.”

Better-financed groups are luring recruits awaiting the next course; they make $225 a month, and with no budget, Mr. Hassan said, “I can’t buy them lunch.”

The good news is that you can probably give them weapons, so, baba booey.

Supreme Leader Trump

This both fun and frightening.
Trump's 20 percent is the largest tally for a Republican contender in any national poll by the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University. Behind Trump are Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker with 13 percent and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush with 10 percent. No other Republican tops 6 percent and 12 percent are undecided.

That's A Problem

Though perhaps I'm just extra sensitive as I'm a bit sick at the moment.
An AP analysis of water quality revealed dangerously high levels of viruses and bacteria from human sewage in Olympic and Paralympic venues — results that alarmed international experts and dismayed competitors training in Rio, some of whom have already fallen ill with fevers, vomiting and diarrhea.


Cole is right, of course.  Cops lie. More insidiously, prosecutors encourage them to lie, actually suborn perjury, essentially immunizing cops from prosecution.  The "teamwork" that gets convictions impedes holding cops accountable.

Morning Thread

Wednesday, July 29, 2015


Shit is fucked up and bullshit. Congress polls in the single digits. So does the media.

That should be something to run on.