Wednesday Open Thread

“Nothing will work unless you do.”

–Maya Angelou

18 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. ParkHill says:

    Republican Party Desperate to View Hunter Biden's Junk. EmptyWheel

    Coordinated propaganda campaign by Steve Bannon.

    It is the top priority of the House GOP to inquire why Twitter took down non-consensually posted revenge porn posted by an associate of a top GOP propagandist.

    Indeed, we know some of those dick pics were sent out as part of a coordinated campaign pushed by Steve Bannon associate Guo Wengui.

    Starting on October 22, 2020, Guo then personally managed minute details of the distribution of pictures and videos. In audio messages he sent to groups of supporters using WhatsApp, which I obtained, he set up a process in which key backers would post Hunter Biden pictures on his streaming website, GTV—a sort of Chinese-language YouTube knockoff—and others would then amplify them. He decreed that much of the material would first be posted by followers living abroad, to help prevent any lawsuits seeking to block the effort.

    “Look at the video copied from Hunter’s computer,” Guo said in a WhatsApp messages to underlings on October 27. (He spoke in Chinese. The messages have been translated.) In another message, referring to various Hunter videos, Guo ordered: “Post one right now, one every hour from now on…I want everyone to fully promote it.”

  2. ParkHill says:

    Rope-a-Dope: Ignore Republican Threats to the Debt Ceiling.

    Republicans are salivating at the chance to eat the debt ceiling hot dog. They figure that by threatening to shut down the Government they can force defunding of the IRS, Social Security, and other programs.

    The cleanest solution would be to use the Legally Blonde 2 strategy of a discharge petition, however…

    I say: Let Them Try. provides a number of ways Biden could avoid the crises, but Biden should run a rope-a-dope strategy by allowing them threaten destruction up to the deadline and then pull the rug out from under them.

    For example: Imagine a hurricane hitting Florida or Texas just as the government is forced to shut down. Or making them touch the third rail of politics, Social Security. Go for maximum exposure and let them hang by their tighty-whities. suggests, "(1) minting a 1 Trillion Dollar platinum coin", which is expressly provided for by law, or a 20 Billion Dollar platinum coin every day. 

    There are some other legal solutions that would leave Republican wailing and gnashing their teeth, including "(2) Invoking the 14th Amendment" or this one:

    "(3) Declare ignoring the debt ceiling to be the “least unconstitutional” option"

    University of Florida law professor Neil Buchanan and Cornell law professor Michael Dorf have, in a series of papers, proposed a way out of the debt ceiling that’s related to but distinct from the 14th Amendment option.

    Buchanan and Dorf note that Congress, by setting spending and tax policy as well as a debt limit, has given the president three mandates: to spend the amount Congress authorizes, to tax the amount Congress authorizes, and to issue as much debt as Congress authorizes. When the debt ceiling is breached, it becomes impossible for the president to obey all three of these legal requirements.

    Prioritizing spending on certain activities and cutting it elsewhere usurps Congress’s spending power by cutting spending unilaterally. Raising taxes without congressional authority would usurp Congress’s taxing power. And ignoring the debt ceiling would usurp Congress’s power to set debt limits.

    The last option — respecting Congress’s taxing and spending powers while ignoring its debt limit — is the “least unconstitutional” option, Buchanan and Dorf argue. This judgment would no doubt be challenged in court, but it’s arguably less dramatic than the president unilaterally declaring the debt ceiling a violation of the 14th Amendment.

  3. ParkHill says:

    For your daily portuguese edification…

    Lula's party "PT" Partido dos Trabalhadores, also stands for Puta Tesão, which roughly translates a "fuckin' horny".

  4. JohnInDenver says:

    John Frank at Axios writes: 

    The off-script moments at the inauguration spoke louder than the address itself. Here are key takeaways from the speech:

    1. A national appeal: The broad-strokes speech emphasized Polis' cross-partisan ideology and brand — one drawing attention in national politics. Even the Rev. James Peters Jr., who gave Tuesday's invocation, responded to rumors of Polis for national office. "My message to Washington is back off," Peters said. "Don't try to steal our governor."
    2. Less fanfare: Four years ago, Polis became the nation's first elected openly gay man to hold the position, a historic mark he acknowledged in the speech. This year's inauguration stuck to the 2019 ceremony script — complete with Polis taking a selfie — but it had much less fanfare and smaller crowds.
    3. Republican reaction: Polis' call to "celebrate red and blue" struck a middle-ground tone and he avoided any policy specifics that would ruffle feathers. So far, so good for Republican lawmakers, even as they expressed caution about what's to come. "This is a pretty good, generic speech in which Polis is looking very much gubernatorial. Four years ago, it seemed like a campaign speech," state Rep. Matt Soper (R-Delta) told us.
    4. High security: Polis remains under the same threats related to his Jewish faith and identity as when he took office four years ago, as evidenced by the protective glass that shielded him on stage, heightened security and closed roads around the Capitol. His mother, Susan Polis Schutz, who read two poems on stage, even thanked the "hundreds of security people who protect us."
    5. Best moment: When Polis helped the vertically challenged Lt. Gov. Dianne Primavera stand on a stool for her speech. "It's always nice to have a governor around," she quipped.

    I continue to be amused at the thought that Polis is making "a national appeal." Does anyone outside a media content producer catch even a whiff of Polis seeking a national role?

  5. Powerful Pear says:

    National security is at risk with Joe BiteMe hiding secret documents. Do the PolCats care?

    • Conserv. Head Banger says:

      They're from his time as vice-president, I've read. Making them much less important than what Trump tried to conceal at Mar A Lago.

    • NOV GOP meltdown says:

      It’s a case of lawyers cooperating and informing the government they discovered a handful of classified documents versus a serial liar obstructing the process, hiding hundreds of classified documents, lying about having them, then getting caught red-handed, and then claiming they are his because he magically waved a wand and declassified them.

      Quite a difference, but you’ll never hear that from the Trump Humpers.

      But her emails!!!

    • unnamed says:

      Oh, look.  Our local Trump fellator comes back to play whataboutism.  Who saw that coming?  /s

  6. Genghis says:

    Well, damn. Jeff Beck’s death was reported earlier this week then dismissed as a hoax. Turns out he really is gone. RIP, and thanks for decades of utterly spectacular music.

    • wolfeman says:

      Spectacular, indeed. Reminds me somewhat of the "Twang Bar King" Adrian Belew…

    • unnamed says:

      Jeff Beck was a true original.  I saw him back in 2006, and it was otherworldly.  You watch him.  He barely spoke, but he didn't need to.  He came out and played and it was incredible.  What he did live with some of his studio instrumentals…   

      He was one of the two musicians that listening to them really got me into jazz.  

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