Tuesday, January 24, 2017

The Mall Is Flat

Clearly frightened of the competition from the American Dream.

More mall landlords are choosing to walk away from struggling properties, leaving creditors in the lurch and posing a threat to the values of nearby real estate.

As competition from online shopping batters retailers, some of the largest U.S. landlords are calculating it is more advantageous to hand over ownership to lenders than to attempt to restructure debts on properties with darkening outlooks.

That, in turn, leaves lenders with little choice but to unload the distressed properties at fire-sale prices.

Afternoon Thread

enjoy

Don't Be Savvy

Resist the tendency to think that you are "in on the joke," that you know what politicians really mean, that seemingly incomprehensible strategies have a grand purpose behind them, and that, most importantly, only those with deep insight can divine what they are.

If you can figure out it, the rubes can too.

Life Goes On

Sometimes people get on a "why can you post about X when TRUMP ARGLEBARGLE" and, yes, there are few things more important than the catastrophe being imposed on our country and the world, but there are also many things in the world and they don't all stop happening.

Right Thing

Yes, the junior senator from New York is doing the right thing. The opposite of that is some senators are doing the wrong thing. I wish we didn't have to explain this.

The Heroes We Need

People always park in crosswalks around here. It's bad. It's unsafe. There are a lot of elderly people in the neighborhood who do, yes, walk places. They need access to the crosswalk and the associated curb cuts (the good kind, not the garage front kind). There's a bit of an enforcement hole, as the state authority tasked with enforcing parking violations tends not to patrol areas without permit parking, and the cops understandably think they have better things to do. Cars also block sight lines, making accidents more likely. There neeeds to be more enforcement. People get enraged by this idea.

There are a lot of ways to improve the parking situation - such having more residential parking permit areas (permits are really really cheap) to cut down on the number of people who just use it to store their beaters and people who use it as a parking lot for the bus line - but too many people prefer the "just let me park wherever the fuck I want" solution (blocks need to vote to get permits, many refuse), which doesn't really help. Also, too, it's unsafe.

Scary Times

The press knows, or soon will know, the scope of what we're dealing with. Unlike past presidents with issues, who at least surrounded themselves with some semi-competent people, Trump has surrounded himself with sycophantic incompetents. Republicans are completely corrupt, and those nasty Dems just turn everything (according to the institutional press) into a partisan problem. You know, both sides.

It is at times like these when a press imbued with some respect and authority is about the only possible check there is left. I do not think they are up to the task.

Tuesday Morning Thread

Monday, January 23, 2017

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Viva Voce - Believer.

Somewhere Out There

While it's true that people abroad get a bit more US-related news than we get of other countries and generally know a bit more about things here than we know of them, it isn't actually the case that people in other countries spend all day thinking about the US. We aren't actually the center of their universe, just the biggest star on the horizon. They have their own politics, own culture, own daily bullshit, own memes and favorite cats on the internet sites, etc. It really ain't all about us.

Happy Hour Thread

enjoy

Policy Matters

One thing our political press is usually (not always!) very bad about is engaging with the fact that policy actually matters, that it isn't just some debate club. Making it harder to access legal abortions will make people die. Making health insurance coverage worse will make people die. It's very rude to point it out, and it's also very true.

The Daily Press Briefing

Will now be named the Daily Airing Of Trump's Grievances.

Spice Hurl

Is it time yet??? Get ready to be told what IS and ISN'T fit to print!!!

The Sunkist King

Is Trump so unaware that his handlers can get away with calming his feefees with his traveling sycophants, or is he aware and likes it that way anyway? I vote the former, but..

Authorities are also pushing back against the perception that the CIA workforce was cheering for the president. They say the first three rows in front of the president were largely made up of supporters of Mr. Trump’s campaign.

An official with knowledge of the make-up of the crowd says that there were about 40 people who’d been invited by the Trump, Mike Pence and Rep. Mike Pompeo teams. The Trump team expected Rep. Pompeo, R-Kansas, to be sworn in during the event as the next CIA director, but the vote to confirm him was delayed on Friday by Senate Democrats. Also sitting in the first several rows in front of the president was the CIA’s senior leadership, which was not cheering the remarks.

Genres We Can Do With Less Of

White people lecturing other white people on how to to be "allies."

Where'd All The People Go

It's true that in much of America pedestrians are weird invading life forms, but shore towns are generally an exception to this. I don't think most people understand precisely why they love going down the shore, as they say here. Sure they like the beach and all that, but they also like that they can wander around (what the fuck do you think a boardwalk is for) and maybe even stumble home after a drink without having to drive. And, yeah, they get to do it without all the perceived scary residents of cities (you know who I mean!!!). So, sure, it makes perfect sense for state reps of shore towns to declare it's Deathrace 2017.

Ending Welfare As We Know It

One of the more maddening things was the victory laps about "welfare reform" as if getting people off welfare should have been the goal, instead of getting people to not need welfare, which should have been.

We Joke, But It's No Joke

The man running the world is, at best, a lazy dullard.

Spice, Spice, Baby

A press conference today! Exciting!!! Hopefully he yells at the naughty children again!

Word to your mother.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

I've Known This Guy

When I was younger. Men from a certain generation (maybe they exist now, too, I just don't know them), the parents of some of my friends. You know, guys who are Trump's age. At least at home - most weren't big enough shits in life too pull it off outside the home - everybody had to circle around and make sure that Daddy was ok, that Daddy got what he wanted for dinner, that people talked about what Daddy wanted to talk about, which was, of course, Daddy. Their moods would fluctuate wildly, from amusing (a bit, anyway) raconteur to despondent black hole. Everybody spent all their time doing what they could to keep Daddy happy, though there really wasn't anything that could be done.
Mr. Trump grew increasingly angry on Inauguration Day after reading a series of Twitter messages pointing out that the size of his inaugural crowd did not rival that of Mr. Obama’s in 2009. But he spent his Friday night in a whirlwind of celebration and affirmation. When he awoke on Saturday morning, after his first night in the executive mansion, the glow was gone, several people close to him said, and the new president was filled anew with a sense of injury.

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Au Revoir Simone - Don't See the Sorrow.