Wednesday Open Thread

“Let us not look back in anger, nor forward in fear, but around in awareness.”

–James Thurber

38 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Duke Cox says:

    Good morning all. Is everyone enjoying the sinking of the garbage scow, the U.S.S Orange Loser, as much as I?

    • Genghis says:

      laugh

      Looks like FDFQ will be getting round-the-clock babysitting to ensure he doesn’t invite any more nazis to the trash palace for dinner. Maybe, just maybe, the wingnuts picked the wrong scumbucket to deify.

  2. Powerful Pear says:

    The stoner/hemp oligarchs will not like this.

    https://studyfinds.org/medical-marijuana-myth-cannabis-placebo-pain/

    Medical marijuana is just as fake as climate change.

     

  3. kwtree says:

    Elected congresspeople in the pay of a hostile foreign power.

    Mysterious deaths from hijacked plane crashes.

    Terrorists, who want to overthrow the government, blowing up munitions factories.

    Armed vigilantes in the streets, intimidating ethnic minorities.

    A Justice department unable or unwilling to interfere.

    History repeats itself – some lessons apparently are yet to learn. If you haven't yet sampled Maddow's podcast "Ultra", it's time. She is in her element as a long-form storyteller.

    • DavidThi808 says:

      I tried watching Maddow a couple of times. She gets so overwrought over whatever issue she's presenting that I found it really annoying. She had good points within what she was presenting but her presentation was very off putting to me.

      • Voyageur says:

        Maddow has a very annoying style of hyping and shilling her stuff long before delivering.  She's a pitcher with a 50 minute windup for each three second pitch.  She once had some scoop and literally teased it for 40 minutes.  The result was the staff of a rival show tracked it down, aired it immediately and scooped her!

        • kwtree says:

          Yes, but her style that doesn't work well in a cable news format works great in a podcast with one story to tell. As a history buff, you might enjoy it. She does get to the heart of the story quicker in a podcast, too!

  4. ParkHill says:

    Conservative Politics of Victimization. Cafe at TPM.

    A trajectory of the Conservative politics from John Wayne's masculinity to Ronald Regan's racist dog whistles to Trump's they're-all-out-to-get-me. 

    Here is a quote from this long-form article:

    If these developments were, in their way, boons for conservatives, the terrorist attacks of September 11, which marked the beginning of a hyper-intensified period of conservative panic, burnished conservative’s brand of nationalism while making it even more toxic. Conservatives assigned 9/11 an almost metaphysical status as traumatic event: the attack posed an existential threat to American freedom, constituted an unspeakable horror whose unnameability authorized reprisal without end (the initial name for the War on Terror was Operation Infinite Justice), and became synecdoche for a racialized — by way of the figures of the Muslim and/or immigrant — threat to the U.S. 9/11 made all of the U.S. a raw nerve, primed to extract vengeance and highly sensitive to any hint of foreignness.

    All this would be bad enough, but 2008 brought two further blows: the crisis in credit markets and subsequent global financial crisis and the presidential victory of Barack Obama, whose Blackness made the Otherizing subtext of conservatism’s turn impossible to disavow. If the Republican Party was proudly the party of white men, then the 2008 financial crisis happened in an economic sector dominated by white guys and associated with the turn to financialization characteristic of the globalized economy. The presidency has long been conflated with whiteness and masculinity, making the election of a mixed race president disruptive to an American national mythos in any circumstance. But, amidst panicked financial markets, job losses, and worries about a global economic collapse, that the solution the American people decided upon was a charismatic mixed-race man with a “foreign” sounding name — Barack Hussein Obama — registered as a step too far for many conservatives. That is, they were injured by the economy, emasculated by the new president, and by proxy, repudiated and humiliated by the American “people.”

    Sept. 11, 2001’s wounds remained open: the occupation of Afghanistan had not yet brought Osama Bin Laden to justice, the Iraq war was a boondoggle, and there was no way to close the book on an amorphous, infinitely available threat of “terrorism.” Meanwhile the GOP had spent decades playing footsie with segregationists, dog whistling about Blackness, while the evangelical base warned of end times. The decades-long tendency to describe anodyne liberal democracy as threatening to freedom — whether Ronald Reagan’s comparisons of liberal regulatory aims to gulags, Birchers linking civil rights demands to communist agitation, or evangelical talk about secular humanism as existential threat — became embodied in a charismatic Black guy who had proven significantly more popular with Americans than John McCain. 

  5. ParkHill says:

    Republicans Lean In To Threat Of Holding Debt Ceiling Hostage In Exchange For Social Security Cuts by Kate Riga at TPM.

    Pre-election, Republican lawmakers baffled political observers with their candor: they openly spoke about their plans, should they flip the House, to demand cuts to Medicare and Social Security in exchange for not sending the United States careening into default on its debts. 

    Perhaps it should come as no surprise then that they’re now doubling down on the plan after the election has largely passed and the chips fell as they did.   

    • MichaelBowman says:

      "When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time."

      ~Maya Angelou

    • JohnInDenver says:

      Seems like there ought to be a FEW Republican Representatives able to recognize the downside of jeopardizing the full faith and credit of the federal government  by not paying our debts.  And maybe a few who realize that not ALL of their constituents will be pleased by the threat OR the reality of a reduction in Social Security and Medicare.

      It would only take a few to let the Freedom Caucus and friends have their vote to show just how sincere they are, but have the sensible few join with Democrats to avoid such a disaster.

  6. MichaelBowman says:

    Congratulations to the Limon Badgers for their 2022 state football championship title, edging out Wray for the honor. There was such outstanding talent on both sides of that game roster and the players were a class act.
     

    Our rural public schools are doing a great job educating and preparing these kids for adulthood.

    It was the 21st all-time for Limon football, which is the most of any program in Colorado history. The Badgers also won three in a row from 2018-20 and finishing runner-up to Centauri last fall, and notched the program’s 700th with a win over Colorado Springs Christian in the semifinals. 

  7. ParkHill says:

    Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association is at a crossroads as its 42 rural co-ops look to generate more of their own electricity or buy it on the open market. Excellent and very interesting article by Mark Jaffe at the Colorado Sun.

    Coal is dead; long may it stay dead. For the past 10-15 years we've had interest rates near 0 (after inflation). Financial markets were full of money BEGGING for long-term investments… such as Solar and Wind power. 

    Tri-state had an anti-renewables stance and built its 50 Year business strategy on Coal. Bad, bad, bad; stupid, stupid, stupid.

    Maybe just pull the plug and go bankrupt.

    Member co-ops must buy 95% of their electricity from Tri-State under 50-year contracts with the association, but at least 10 co-ops have pushed back on the requirement based on price, the dominance of coal-fired power or a desire to have locally based, clean generation.

    Foremost among those is United Power, which has been trying to develop its own renewable generation and energy storage and is chafing at Tri-State’s wholesale prices, which are higher than those of Colorado’s largest electricity provider, Xcel Energy, which serves neighboring areas.

    The 50-year contracts were not designed as some instrument of servitude, but to assure a steady flow of revenues so the association could borrow the money to construct 10 generating stations, including six coal plants, and nearly 5,800 miles of transmission lines to serve 1.2 million consumers across 200,000 square miles of Nebraska, Wyoming, Colorado, and New Mexico.

    At the end of 2021, Tri-State had $3.2 billion in long-term debt, most of it under an agreement with bondholders called a master indenture, according to a company SEC filing.

    A master indenture outlines rules and performance standards for the borrower to protect the bondholders, and Tri-State’s has debt covenants requiring the association to maintain a set level of revenue to debt service and balance between debt and equity.

    Failure to maintain those ratios would give bondholders the option of seeking immediate repayments.

     A co-op member leaving “under terms that trigger these debt covenants and any lender acts to enforce its rights … would likely put Tri-State into financial distress, and possibly even into bankruptcy,” the association said in a FERC filing.

    • United Power's old boards had been onboard with Tri-State's regressive policies, but recently we've been able to elect better board members.

      Tri-State is acting against the interests of its member co-ops, and it needs a really big LART applied to its corporate ass. Whatever it takes is fine by me.

      • MichaelBowman says:

        It never had to come to this.  The rural cooperative system represents the best and worst of what a socialized system can be.  We have nothing but opportunity in our rural communities and the necessary transition could easily be led by our cooperatives.  USDA as a rural bank has more money to facilitate this transition than anyone.  

        If Tri-State, etal hadn't spent the last 18 years (the post-Amendment 37 world) fighting every move forward, including the preposterous War on Rural Colorado, we'd be in a very different place right now, not the least of which could have been cooperative ownership of the billions in wind investments on the eastern plains. 

        • Except that it did, if only because the co-ops are dominated by rural constituents that often vote conservatively, and the board candidate pools themselves have leaned toward people in the energy field, themselves right-leaning and against change in their field.

          It's stupid, it went against the actual best interests of the co-op members, and if the propaganda wasn't so tinged with pasture patties it might have been avoided.

  8. bullshit! says:

    Guvs swinging the ban hammer again today. V-ger, what do you do to this weirdo to get him so spun up? I can't figure it out since his comments are being deleted as fast as they go up.

  9. Genghis says:

    RIP Christine McVie, my favorite Fleetwood Mac member with the possible exception of the late, great Peter Green.

  10. Lauren Boebert is a Worthless POS says:

    A flaming, right-wing drag queen issues a warning about soft metrosexuals.

    Madison Cawthorn departs House floor with a warning against "soft metrosexuals" (msn.com)

  11. westslope says:

    MB, you’ll remember the sad saga of Colorado Ute, like Tri-State a public power distributor. Its bankruptcy some 30 years ago didn’t teach the powers-that-be in rural America a damned thing.

     

    • MichaelBowman says:

      Exactly. If you’d peel back the last 20 years of their financials one would discover that if you removed the income class “unanticipated sales to non-members” they would have operated in the red almost perpetually. Sales of excess power to third parties kept them in the black. That’s not a bad thing, but means they should have been treated differently at the state level – as a merchant power provider, thus subject to oversight by the PUC. They were untouchable, politically speaking, and we had the equivalent of the inmates running the asylum.

      Most of us are old enough to remember when they gave zero dollars to Ritter in his (successful) run for Gov. AFTER the election they showed up, hat-in-hand, with the check. They thought they could bully and stall their way through the eight years of Obama. It’s just so damn sad. They were the perfect vehicle in every way to have created new wealth and opportunities in rural Colorado. We’ve cut off our nose to spite our face.

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