Monday Open Thread

“There is a Providence that protects idiots, drunkards, children and the United States of America.”

–Otto von Bismarck

36 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Voyageur says:

    Trump stinks.

    And Bolton is his mascot.

    Stay upwind, America.

    Stay very upwind.

  2. Davie says:

    Orwell's prediction about Doublethink is getting closer as right-wing media companies gobble up hundreds of TV stations and newspapers:

    Sinclair Made Dozens of Local News Anchors Recite the Same Script

    “Unfortunately, some members of the media use their platforms to push their own personal bias and agenda to control exactly what people think,” dozens of news anchors said last month, reading from a script provided by Sinclair Broadcast Group

    Sinclair regularly sends video segments to the stations it owns. These are referred to as “must-runs,” and they can include content like terrorism news updatescommentators speaking in support of President Trump or speeches from company executives like the one from Mr. Livingston last year.

    But asking newscasters to present the material themselves is not something that Kirstin Pellizzaro, a doctoral candidate at Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, remembered from her experience as a producer at a Sinclair-owned news station in Kalamazoo, Mich., from 2014 to 2015.

    The script came from Sinclair Broadcast Group, the country’s largest broadcaster, which owns or operates 193 television stations.

    Sinclair is in the midst of a $3.9 billion bid to take over Tribune Media, and needs the DOJ to approve it. They are polishing Trump’s knob hoping for a favorable ruling.

  3. MichaelBowman says:

    The Trump Disciples are complicated folk. Do you reckon anyone of them remember this?  Any over/under which TV channel Fluffy was glued to last week? 

  4. Conserv. Head Banger says:

    It's time for VG to come up with something new about Trump. The usual "Trump stinks" mantra is getting really old and boring.

    What really stinks for me, though, is Century Link's internet service, which is somewhat of a political issue. I pay for high speed. On Saturday, two days ago, the speed was about what I used to get with the old dial-up. Unfortunate, because it took me about half again as long to get the work done that I had planned to do. Doesn't make much sense to talk about getting high speed broadband into rural areas of the state when we don't get consistent high speed in urban areas.

    I've thought about switching to Comcast. But have heard their speeds aren't consistently fast either. So………..

    • Davie says:

      Neither CenturyLink nor Comcast are 100% reliable.  I homeofficed for about 9 years — first with CenturyLink as my internet service provider, then adding Comcast when Centurylink started having intermittant reliability issues.  I finally switched completely to Comcast and it was pretty reliable until it too started having intermittant outages (for awhile, it was predictably failing each morning right when I was having my daily staff call — I wound up dialing in from my Verizon cell phone as backup).

      Comcast keeps trying to entice me to switch to their cell phone service which I find laughable, given that the only way to find out why there is a Comcast network outage and when they think it will be resolved is via their web service.

      The only solution is to have a secondary internet/phone provider.  Performance-wise, I suspect network congestion is a major contributor, as well as ongoing spot outages in their central offices, due to maintenance and/or equipment failures.

      The global tech company I worked for had massive datacenters around the world, with highly redundant services.  However, more than once, a single point of failure would bring down wide swaths of our servers, affecting productivity worldwide. 🙁

  5. Voyageur says:

    Actually, CHB, it's time for Trump to stop stinking.  But he won't.  If you don't like to be reminded of the stink, don't read the post.  But stay upwind, anyway.

    It's important.

  6. JohnInDenver says:

    And for what it is worth, my weekly check-in with the Gallup organization finds that Trump approval continues to be underwater, with 39% approval and 55% disapproval. 

    What continues to baffle me is the relative consistency of approval (35-40% since last June) without reference to events AND that 6% apparently can't decide if they approve or not.

  7. Diogenesdemar says:

    Another day of the stock market rallying on more fantastic news from the front lines of Stormy’s john’s easy-to-win trade war . . .

    China Slaps Tariffs on 128 U.S. Products, Including Wine, Pork and Pipes

    . . . anyone left in the Republican Party who isn’t tired of all this winning, yet?

    • RepealAndReplace says:

      I don't think it ever occurred to him that if he crapped on others, they would crap back on us.

      I have to give the Chinese credit for their selective tariffs. CNN had a map of the ten states that are hurt the most by the Chinese tariffs and eight of them voted for Trump!

      Let's wait for Moderatus to tell us how wrong we are and how great everything is.

      • ParkHill says:

        Trade wars are easy to win.

      • Davie says:

        Trump's trade war with China could very well be his Waterloo:

        The president’s position is actually quite precarious. He’s already at a historic low approval rating. With the multiple scandals, rampant corruption and the Mueller investigation, the only thing keeping him near 40 percent approval — and most important, approval among most Republicans — is a strong economy. That, and Fox cheerleading. But if he tanks the rural economy, he and his legacy are in deep trouble.

        Furthermore, if the rural economy turns sour, much of rural America will abandon Mr. Trump, and Fox may have no choice but to follow.

        Then it’s just a matter of time before they will turn with the hope that a Trump impeachment and a Pence presidency will save the economy, the conservative gains that have been made under Trump, and the Republican Party. They’ll believe that they have no choice, and it will be swift and ruthless.

        If that eventuality does come about, expect our village idiot Fluffy to show up leading the cheers.

        • Diogenesdemar says:

          That legacy might have trouble . . . 

          The president’s position is actually quite precarious. He’s already at a historic low approval rating. With the multiple scandals, rampant corruption and the Mueller investigation . . . . But if he tanks the rural economy, he and his legacy are in deep trouble.

          . . . who says Republicans can’t do funny?!?

        • MichaelBowman says:

          I spoke with a banker this morning that told me regulators are putting enormous pressure on them to no longer accommodate accounts tied to (agricultural) hemp activities – in particular Colorado operations.  What the eff is wrong with these people?

          • Davie says:

            Hopefully that will change if Mitch McConnell's Hemp Farming Act of 2018 passes.  The Denver Post touted it just yesterday in their editorial:

            Colorado voters legalized hemp at the same time they legalized recreational marijuana. The state now grows more than any other state, and other states want to copy our success. Indeed, a major hemp expo and tradeshow lands in Loveland next weekend.

            No doubt expo attendees will be talking about McConnell, who has promised to introduce legislation to remove hemp from the controlled-substances list and treat it as an agricultural commodity. His Hemp Farming Act of 2018 would give farmers a lot more freedom to grow without fear that the Justice Department might decide to crack down on them. McConnell comes from Kentucky, which has had success with its own industrial hemp pilot project.

            “It’s now time to take the final step and make this a legal crop,” McConnell said.

            Removing hemp from the controlled-substances list would allow farmers to buy crop insurance and access banks more easily. The U.S. Department of Agriculture would have some oversight, but states would have wide latitude to regulate the crop.

            Hemp has had bipartisan support in Congress for years but has struggled to advance. With McConnell pushing it, its prospects are much better.

            The Sessions toadies apparently haven't gotten the word yet.

            • MichaelBowman says:

              Senator McConnell has been really good on this issue; he was the co-sponsor of the Senate version (S.134) in the 114th (which the media never really reported on).  We have a big thanks to give to Senator Bennet who fought to keep the Polis House amendment (7606) in the final bill in Dec, 2014.  The just-passed Budget Act even includes language to encourage USDA to make grants to farmers related to their legal hemp enterprises under 7606.  To do that, the farmer would have to deposit said monies into their farm bank account.  

              McConnell has committed to sitting down with Sessions to get this ironed out (Session's Alabama is a legal state).

              One could drown in the irony of all this.   

        • mamajama55 says:

          How long have we been saying that ______ will be Trump's Waterloo?

          He'll just lie and tweet that the economy is great. And Fox News will repeat it, and his base will believe it, even if their daily reality contradicts it. 

          That's less than 35% of the voting population, but they would rather believe Dear Leader than their own lying eyes.

      • JohnInDenver says:

        And the two that did NOT vote for Trump, the areas mostly impacted by the Chinese tariffs are Republican Representatives' districts.

  8. RepealAndReplace says:

    My favorite Bismarck quote:

    "The biggest lies are told immediately before the wedding, right after the hunt and in the middle of the political campaign."

  9. Diogenesdemar says:

    Quite apropos, since there probably isn’t a single john on the planet who has done more recently to make the public aware of sexual assault: . . .

    And, fittingly, the Trumpublicans in the Colorado Senate have planned their own special commemorative awareness tribute . . . 


  10. MichaelBowman says:

    This could explain the recent absence of our beloved Nutlid.  He's busy on another project: 

    Russian bots are rallying behind embattled Fox News host Laura Ingraham as advertisers dump her show

    On Saturday evening, #istandwithlaura was the top trending hashtag among Twitter accounts linked to Russian influence operations, according to Hamilton 68, a website launched last year that tracks Russian propaganda campaigns in near-real time. 

    Per the site's data, the frequency with which the accounts tweeted the hashtag jumped by 2800% on Friday and Saturday.

  11. RepealAndReplace says:

    Any word on the final delegate counts in each party going into state assembly?

  12. RepealAndReplace says:

    Grantham's speech is a very slow-moving stream of consciousness. 

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