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March 15, 2023 07:56 AM UTC

Wednesday Open Thread

  • by: Colorado Pols

“Concern should drive us into action and not into a depression. No man is free who cannot control himself.”



46 thoughts on “Wednesday Open Thread

  1. Pols missed an opportunity today.  You boys should have had a Pat Schroeder quote to honor a woman who eschewed angertainment in favor of getting things done.  Those were the days my friend when elected leaders led by example.

    1. Pols does have a quota, GG. No more than 20% of all Daily quotes per month can be from women or people of color. They've already exceeded that quota this month. Gotta keep the old dead white guys in memory, doncha know.

    2. The Denver Post must have gotten their ears blistered yesterday for relegating news of her demise to a wire service story on page 4, and plastering a big photo of actual clowns on the front page . Today, there’s a much longer piece, front page, above the fold, written by Noelle Phillips. 

    3. I ran today's Pythagoras quote into the Pat Schroeder A.I. Chatbot and it gave me:

      “You can’t wring your hands and roll up your sleeves at the same time.”

  2. Trump Crime Syndicate Lawyer Boris Epshteyn… EmptyWheel

    WOTD: “17 tortured words out of 83 are Enhanced Euphemism Techniques”

    The important part of the story is about Trump-Bannon Cryptocurrency Grift. Maggie Haberman concentrates on Bannon quotes about Epshteyn instead of the grift.

    [Maggie Haberman at the] NYT buried the news that SDNY has opened an investigation into the crypto currency scam Epshteyn and Steve Bannon grifted loyal Trump supporters with beneath not one, not two, but three flashy quotes about Epshteyn from Bannon himself, followed by 22 paragraphs, many focused on how Boris charged campaigns for keeping them on Trump’s good side, then one  paragraph that included 17 words of tortured Enhanced Euphemism Techniques in an 83 word paragraph, only then to reveal that Bannon is under investigation for the crypto currency scheme, too.

    … Straight forward reporting would address the grift of the Trump/Bannon Cryptocurrency:

    Breaking: A key source for this story, Steve Bannon, is under investigation for the shameless grift of printing pro-Trump money, then bilking Trump supporters every time they bought it.

    1. How ABC reports the story:

      A cryptocurrency linked to former Trump White House strategist Steve Bannon and Trump adviser Boris Epshteyn has caught the attention of federal prosecutors in New York, who have started looking into it, sources familiar with the matter told ABC News.

      News of federal prosecutors’ interest in the Bannon and Epshteyn-fronted cryptocurrency comes on the heels of an ABC News investigation into the cryptocurrency, which looked at allegations of internal chaos and mismanagement by the two high-profile Trump associates over the past year, including accusations that they’ve failed in their commitment to continue to donate portions of the coin’s proceeds to charities.

      The New York Times was the first to report the news of the inquiry from federal prosecutors.

      MORE: Internal chaos plagues Bannon-fronted $FJB cryptocurrency, critics say
      The cryptocurrency — dubbed $FJB from the shorthand version of the vulgar MAGA expression “F— Joe Biden” and now officially said to stand for Freedom Jobs and Business — has lost 95% of its value amid internal turmoil, at least in part due to an industry-wide downturn.

      Critics say $FJB represents the latest in a string of ill-fated efforts to leverage MAGA support for financial returns — particularly on the part of Bannon, who in September pleaded not guilty to unrelated charges that he defrauded donors with the promise of building a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.

      Acquired by Bannon and Epshteyn from original lead creator Grant Tragni and two other co-founders in late 2021, $FJB was promoted as a rejection of President Joe Biden and an alternative financial institution for conservatives by the two MAGA influencers — who also emphasized that part of the currency’s 8% transaction fee would go to charities including the Wounded Warriors Project, Tunnels To Towers, Semper Fi and Patriot Freedom Project.

      But according to a spokesperson for the Wounded Warriors Project, as of January this year, no donations had been made by $FJB to the organization since Bannon and Epshteyn took over in December 2021. Wounded Warriors told ABC News that they had only received the one donation from $FJB in November 2021 — prior to Bannon and Epshteyn’s involvement.

    1. Funny when she said 'this is going to go viral.' Yep gurl, it's viral AF.

      I'm a broken record on this, but people seriously struggling for a definition of woke could save themselves a bunch of trouble by watching W. Kamau Bell's "United Shades of America" episode from Arizona. "Woke" was originally really about Black awareness in the face of real danger to their safety, but it's been watered down to cover all/most progressive stances and abused by the right in recent years.

      The talking head PH posted was not serious about a definition. She and her ilk are just throwing out "woke" as red meat, with as much repetition as possible to tar and feather far-lefties and Dimocrats.

        1. Funny, W. Kamau Bell just weighed in on the video on Twitter:

          She tapped out mid-grift. Wrote a whole chapter on “woke”. Still can’t define “woke”. The reason why they don’t have definition of “woke” is then it can mean ANYTHING they want it to mean. Black, liberal, trans, socialism… I bet she can define grift.

  3. Who’s going to tell Babushka?  One of the many reasons I left the party years ago was their refusal to embrace rural America’s new crop and the bounty it could deliver to our rural communities – especially if we had been “woke” enough to stop stepping on our *icks.  Instead of our rural electric coops having a seat at the table the industry is largely comprised of out-of-state corporations that extract the maximum amount of benefits for our landscape. 

    This Conservative Group Is Advocating for Renewable Energy

    While Republican politicians castigate Wall Street over its climate initiatives, another group of conservatives is trying to change hearts and minds in rural counties and state capitals on the benefits of the nation’s shift to clean energy.

    In town halls, courthouses and statehouses across the Midwest, South and Appalachian states, members of the Conservative Energy Networkhave been meeting with farmers, landowners, Evangelicals and state lawmakers to convince them that wind, solar and other forms of renewable power are good for their wallets, rights and votes. 

    The group does however eschew the term “green energy.’’ And while its members say they believe the science underpinning climate change, “net zero’’ and the Paris climate accord aren’t top of mind. Instead, their message squarely focuses on energy independence, free markets, land rights and consumer choice. 

    “Quite frankly, our conservative voice has been missing from policy debates for too long, especially at the state and local levels,’’ says Brittany Tisler, interim chief of the Michigan-based nonprofit.


      1. PH can't handle any positive use of the word "conservative." And was it just a weerk ago that you were wailing against conservative conservationist actions?

        1. I haven't the slightest idea what "conservative" actually means.

          Is it a Political philosophy? Economic? Cultural? Or is it just a rhetorical style. I keep asking for a definition, and I get no answer, just a come-on from the whores on MAGA avenue. The only one I feel makes any sense is this one:

          "Standing athwart history screaming STOP!". William F. Buckley

          1. I have a handful of extended family members that fall in the same lane as CHB. They're anti-Trump, and when they say "conservative", yes, they refer to the days of decades ago.  They don't vote for morons, and make some good points (as real conservatives often do).  I respect their positions…I don't consider them my enemy.  I pick my battles. 

              1. I enjoy and appreciate CHB's contributions here. They are always thoughtful. I believe the Republican party left him when they abandoned their core principles and embraced the nutbags and deplorables.

                My Godfather, a died in the wool Republican, rest his soul, used to always tell me "Not all Republicans are bad people", and that was certainly the case back then. Still the case now, but far, far fewer good, sane ones. Looking at you Mitt Romney, Adam Kinzinger and Liz Cheney…

          2. Based on actual practice PH, and in today’s climate, I’ve taken it to mean the conserving and protecting of billionaires and oligarchs:  There’s proportionally so very few the creatures, they’re constantly endangered and under attack by modernity and “woke” policies (e.g., democracy, majority rule, having to accept personal responsibility, etc.), and whenever they do speak they sound and act in such a manner that the only conclusion to be drawn is that they’re incredibly damn fragile.

            Save the $$$,$$$,$$$,$$$ whales!!! . . . (and expand their habitats)

    1. I'm still waiting for him to define who he is at war with if he is a wartime leader.  Is he really saying that he is at war with his fellow Americans?

    2. What’s bad for the Republican Party is that Williams has only run for office in deep red El Paso county.  He has no experience or knowledge of how to win races in blue or contested areas.  Memo to Dave:  What works in El Paso county just might not have the same bite in Arapaho.

    1. Funny story – at Windward we had flexible PTO which meant take what you want/need. No limits. We tracked it for the first 2 years and while we had one person abuse it, the big problem was some people were taking no time off. (Solved that by tracking that each employee had taken 2 week long breaks/year and if they didn't, I would make them do so.)

      Then some regulation came down about every employee must have 5 days sick leave (not sure of the number of days or the exact criteria). And by law we now had to track that specific time off to make sure they had it.

      I can understand why as some companies might try to avoid giving the time through a fake PTO system. But it was annoying that what we had was better/more than this by any measure, but we still had to track it. 

      1. … while we had one person abuse it, the big problem was some people were taking no time off. (Solved that by tracking that each employee had taken 2 week long breaks/year and if they didn’t, I would make them do so.)

        Kinda’ sounds like you were already doing tracking of time taken or not?

        (But I get that it’s gotta’ be really annoying to be told to maintain a record of compliance — even if you already do.)

  4. Beware the Ides of March!

    (I don’t believe there’s any particular pastry, or artificially-colored beverage associated.  Feel free to celebrate as you are led.)

      1. I dug this up on YouTube out of curiosity, and didn't know by the title it was THAT song! Do not beware this Ides of March, it's a great piece of work.

      1. I would be remiss if I allowed this moment to pass without reminding the readers that Bushmills is considered by many to be a superior product.

  5. Getting ahead of the MAGA-Sphere on "woke corporations funding BLM. Josh Marshall at TPM.

    (We're not talking about the Bureau of Land Management, which might have something to do with conservation.)

    According to stories bursting across the right-wing mediasphere today, a key reason for the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank was its focus on spreading “woke culture” rather than efficiently managing risk and profits. Ground zero for this is the allegation that Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) had donated over $73 million to the “BLM Movement & Related Causes.” That struck me as quite a lot of money to any cause or even all causes for a single company, even a large and profitable one. So I tried to find out where this factoid came from and rapidly found my way to a Trumpist think think and – perhaps not surprisingly – it’s a complete lie. I want to show you the receipts but first some key details.

    The claims come from a database posted earlier this week by the Center for the American Way of Life, a project of the Claremont Institute. 

    Let’s start with 3M.

    Claremont lists 3m pledging a whopping $50 million to “BLM”. But the cited document published in September 2020 appears to be mainly focused on supporting STEM learning in Black communities. It’s a pledge of $50 million over 5 years and lists $6 million in initial investments. That $6 million consisted of $5 million to the United Negro College Fund for work in St Paul, Minnesota and another $1 million is slated for “annual investment to social justice partnerships, led by our employee resource network community champions and building on the initial investment from 3M Foundation in 2020.”

    For Claremont, these are all “BLM”.

    1. Yeah, yeah, yeah  — we know, those dreaded “woke” purple post-it-notes? Or, is it the pink ones this week? The green ones wearing sensible shoes?

      And, don’t forget all those “woke” NFL teams, and their $250M “woke” indoctrination program.

      BTW, wondering what’s the color for this particular NFL “woke-washing” — You can probably bet your FanDuel account that it’s still green ($) and pasty white all over??

    2. Ah, finally. Some good faith conclusions based on facts supported with evidence to sway the MAGA folk back to reality. That'll do the trick this time! indecision

      I'm just being cynical. I appreciate the article and the sharing of the article and I'm just tired of the constant bad-faith shouting from the MAGA folk.

  6. Today it was announced that former President Carter asked Joe Biden to give his eulogy. Here are some things to remember Carter by while he's still with us:

    – At 95-years-old he continued to build homes with Habitat for Humanity as seen below. 

    – In the 1960’s he supported civil rights, which hurt his early political career in Georgia. 

    – He won a Nobel Peace Prize

    – Jimmy and Rosalyn Carter are the longest married president and first lady ever. 

    -In 2006, he was instrumental in reforming the U.N. Commission on Human Rights, now the U.N. Human Rights Council.

    What an amazing soul.  


    1. To you as well.

      While I don’t think there is any bad Irish whisky ( I have tried several, including Jameson.), I will only say…Bushmills had been making whisky for 170 years when Jameson distilled its first batch.

      For pure, smooth, Irish whiskey, my preference is Bushmills Red.

      Degustubus non est disputandem.



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