ChrisWeigant.com

Please support ChrisWeigant.com this
holiday season!

Thankfully, 2017 Is Almost Over

[ Posted Wednesday, November 22nd, 2017 – 18:08 PST ]

As a rule, I don't generally write touchy-feely columns where I talk about my own life or my personal feelings. This isn't that kind of blog, after all. I may give my personal impressions about politics in the midst of commenting on the issues of the day, but almost never spend a whole column navel-gazing. Today I'm departing from this general rule, and would like to offer up the following as a very personal Thanksgiving Day message to my readers. So if you're not into that sort of thing, I'd advise you to stop reading right now.

First, a few major program notes to attend to. This will be the final column for this week, as I'm taking the whole Thanksgiving weekend off. So there will be no Friday Talking Points this week, and I wish all of you (and your families; even that pro-Trump uncle you can't stand) a very happy holiday weekend. Also, there may not be any new columns for all of next week (at best, I may be able to run some repeats), because I may be required to perform my civic duty on a jury. Where I live, this is a day-by-day thing, so I may not know until next Thursday night whether I'll be able to write a column next Friday, either. I may be gone one day, followed by an absence of a week (or even more), or I may be gone one day and return the next, after having been dismissed. It's all a crap shoot, so I'll try to at least post some "Program Note" updates on what my schedule will be next week, but it could be just about anything. Just to warn everyone in advance.

With that out of the way, I'd like to address a few things that have weighed on my mind for the past year.

Some families go around the table at Thanksgiving dinner so that each person can say what they've been thankful for in the past year. Up until a few weeks ago, however, I had precious little to be thankful for this year. Beginning with Donald Trump's election and inauguration, there just hasn't been much hope to be found in the world of politics. It's been a dismal and highly surreal year for progressives, to say the least. I've personally felt all along that it seems we've all fallen into some alternate universe that never should have even been greenlighted as a script in Hollywood (except perhaps as a comedic farce), from which we simply cannot escape. We're all wandering around in a Dali painting, watching solid objects melt before our eyes. The whole year has fallen down the rabbit hole. Choose your metaphor -- it's been the most bizarre year in politics since Bill Clinton was impeached (at the very least).

This has affected me personally. Every morning I wake up and realize that an absolute con man is president, and a crushing weight of depression rolls over me, once again. I drag myself to either the television or the computer to learn what idiocies our Dear Leader has tweeted in the wee hours, with dread. I also read what's been happening behind the scenes throughout the entire executive branch, while Trump is busily distracting everyone with today's shiny, shiny object for most of the media to chase. It is, once again, depressing. I am not alone in these feelings, as they are doubtlessly shared by millions. There is, quite simply, nothing about Donald Trump to be thankful for, with the possible exception of: "Well, at least he hasn't started World War III... yet." Which isn't saying much.

I don't mean to sound lighthearted, because that's the farthest thing from how I've felt all year long. It has taken all my strength to even continue following the political news closely enough to semi-intelligently comment on what is going on. And several times during the year I have wondered what I'm even trying to accomplish. More than once I have seriously considered just hanging up my hat and ending this blog. That's how deeply 2017 has affected me.

One big thing that kept me going was the concept of giving good value for the money. I collected donations last December as always, and to abruptly end the blog mid-year would, as far as I see it, be cheating my customers out of what they've already paid for. I couldn't live with myself for committing what would essentially be fraud (again, at least in my mind), so I swore to make it through the whole year. I have now done so, and the traditional time for the pledge drive is right around the corner.

While I have continued to write daily columns, many weeks it has taken all my mental energy to do so. This has led to me shortchanging all of you in the comments section, for which I sincerely apologize. I have continued to read all your comments, but a lot of the time I just don't have the energy to join in the debates. This has allowed a certain degree of unruliness to creep in, which has resulted in fewer other people commenting as well, which is a dangerous spiral indeed. Even longtime readers and longtime commenters have all but disappeared, which saddens me. But at the same time, I've got no one but myself to blame for this ongoing neglect of the ChrisWeigant.com community. I point no finger except back at myself, and again offer up a mea culpa maxima in full apology.

Thankfully, once again, 2017 is almost over.

Now, when considering what will happen in 2018, using the logic outlined above, I might have decided this would be the proper time to call it quits. If doing it wasn't bringing me any joy at all, then why bother? But I am glad to announce that I'm in it for at least another year, if you all agree that the site is still meaningful and worthwhile. So I will be conducting the 2017 pledge drive next month as usual (or perhaps, after this weekend -- we'll see about that whole jury duty thing...). And I will personally commit to another entire year of writing reality-based commentary.

What really changed my personal and political outlook for the better -- and what convinced me it's worth hanging in there -- were the results of the 2017 election. This is what I'm thankful for this year -- Virginia, New Jersey, Washington state and all the rest of the elections Democrats did so well in. It gives me hope for the 2018 midterms, that's for sure.

Will the American public remain outraged for another year? Will progressives, liberals, Democrats, and sane independents be highly motivated to get to the midterm polls even without a presidential election? One can only hope so. A year is forever in politics (especially these days), so who knows where we'll all be next November? And while off-off-year elections right after presidential years are not always all that accurate in predicting the future, it certainly seems like the whole grassroots "Resist!" movement has not faded away yet. This breeds hope for the future.

The special elections held this year were disappointing, and we all may be massively disappointed in a few weeks if Roy Moore wins the Alabama Senate seat. But special elections are rarely predictive of nationwide moods. So far, by my count, neither party has flipped a single district in special elections this year -- all the red districts stayed red, and the one blue district stayed blue. So while it would be downright astonishing to see a Democrat win Alabama, it won't be all that surprising if the Republican wins, no matter how odious he may be. But no matter which way the election goes, it will only add to Democratic hopefulness. Either a Democrat (!) will be representing Alabama in the U.S. Senate, or Democrats will be able to tie Roy Moore around the necks of every Republican running for office next year as a 14-ton millstone. Democrats will see some political benefit either way, in other words.

I have to admit, I am also extremely thankful for Republican incompetence. I shudder to imagine where we'd be now if the GOP had their act together in Congress. Add to that Trump's incapability to learn how to use the presidential levers of power, and the sum total is far fewer things have gotten done than I would have imagined a year ago. So, yes, in a way I am very thankful for the House Tea Partiers, since they always seem to snatch defeat from a looming Republican victory. I'm also thankful for the handful of sane Republican senators, who have prevented the worst of the GOP agenda from being enacted.

I am hopeful enough this Thanksgiving to make the commitment to continue for another year. This means continuing to write original columns, but I'm also looking to become more engaged in the process once again. I should have been lining up some interviews, and even adding a few guest author columns into the mix as well. I am attempting to recommit myself to actively joining in the commenting fray, especially since the recent return ("Welcome back to the party, pal!") of one particular commenter here. Somebody's got to try to keep him in check, right?

If my hopefulness continues, perhaps it might bloom into full-fledged optimism. There are a number of projects that I've considered taking on, but didn't have anywhere near the energy or focus in 2017 to tackle. The format of this blog site desperately needs updating, but this is such a massive project to undertake that it is daunting. In my mind, what I'd like would be to -- at the very least -- make the code friendly to smart phones and other non-desktop-computer devices. This should have happened years ago, I realize, but then again I am my own I.T. department, so it's a major undertaking.

I may even pursue writing opportunities beyond my normal scope. The major media outlet I regularly cross-post to has gone through such radical changes of late that I've been considering exploring other online venues for cross-posting, for instance. One that pays actual money would be nice, but then perhaps that's too much to hope for at this point. And I may decide to make another attempt at cracking the publishing world with a book idea, or even explore the world of ebooks. Would anybody be interested in a collection of the best of my blogs from the Obama years? It's something worth pondering, at the very least.

But whatever happens, you will soon be seeing the CW.com yearly pledge drive launch, as soon as possible (as I can manage) after the Thanksgiving weekend. Yes, there will be kittens -- fair warning! But as I explained, I consider this money paid forward, not back. You will be funding this site for the next year, and I promise that I will make every effort to see that a full year's value will be given in return.

I started blogging at the end of the Dubya Era (2006). It wasn't pleasant, but the timing was perfect to view the whole scope of the rise of Barack Obama. Blogging in the Trump Era is certainly no picnic. But now there is some solid hope to cling to. Democrats have a fair-to-middlin' chance of taking back either (or even both) houses of Congress in less than a year's time. The precursors for a blue wave election exist. If this becomes reality, it will not only boost Democrats' power in Congress, it will also reverse much of the loss Democrats have experienced at the state level as well. This would send a strong message that America desires some checks and balances against Trump and the Republican-led Congress. Having Nancy Pelosi or Chuck Schumer in control would guarantee that the worst of Trump's agenda never sees the light of day. Not to mention the fun they'd have investigating the Trump administration.

So I am thankful indeed to all the Democratic candidates who won their races earlier this month. These victories provided hope to millions of Americans beyond the localities where the elections took place. The response to Trumpism did not turn out to be apathy, but rather anger. And determination. If this can be replicated next year, it will go a long way towards saving America from the ongoing disaster in the Oval Office. And that's not just a reason to be thankful, it's a reason to be hopeful. So Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

-- Chris Weigant

 

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

315 Comments on “Thankfully, 2017 Is Almost Over”

  1. [1] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Chris,

    More than once I have seriously considered just hanging up my hat and ending this blog. That's how deeply 2017 has affected me.

    I'm thankful for this blog, everyday, and more so this year, only in part due to the Trump presidency. I'm now lookin after my mom on a full-time basis and working full-time+ - as a retail boutique manager, no less! - and I have had precious little energy for anything else.

    I couldn't even get through this piece but I promise to do so and comment further. Because this site is so important to me.

    You can count on my financial support going forward and I'll try to make up for the last couple of years.

    More later! When I have a few spare moments ... :)

  2. [2] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I have continued to read all your comments, but a lot of the time I just don't have the energy to join in the debates. This has allowed a certain degree of unruliness to creep in, which has resulted in fewer other people commenting as well, which is a dangerous spiral indeed. Even longtime readers and longtime commenters have all but disappeared, which saddens me. But at the same time, I've got no one but myself to blame for this ongoing neglect of the ChrisWeigant.com community. I point no finger except back at myself, and again offer up a mea culpa maxima in full apology.

    And, THAT is what makes this blog so special ... regardless of the state of the comments section. Heh.

  3. [3] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    But I am glad to announce that I'm in it for at least another year, if you all agree that the site is still meaningful and worthwhile. So I will be conducting the 2017 pledge drive next month as usual (or perhaps, after this weekend -- we'll see about that whole jury duty thing...). And I will personally commit to another entire year of writing reality-based commentary.

    Excellent!

    And, I will keep trying to submit comments in an up-wing direction and encourage enlightened discussion with a little spirited debate on the side ... no matter how over- and underwhelming Trump's know-nothing era becomes or how long it lasts.

    Stronger, together!

    :-)

  4. [4] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I am attempting to recommit myself to actively joining in the commenting fray, especially since the recent return ("Welcome back to the party, pal!") of one particular commenter here. Somebody's got to try to keep him in check, right?

    Happy Thanksgiving, indeed!

    Having said that, you know it hasn't been the same around here without him ...

  5. [5] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    The format of this blog site desperately needs updating, but this is such a massive project to undertake that it is daunting.

    I like it just the way it is. Adapting to change isn't one of my stronger suits. Of course, after a short enough while, I'll forget what it was like before the change.

  6. [6] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Would anybody be interested in a collection of the best of my blogs from the Obama years?

    That sounds lovely. :)

    I still can't stop thinking about that other writing project of yours ... I would love to have that book/ebook ...

  7. [7] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    So I am thankful indeed to all the Democratic candidates who won their races earlier this month. These victories provided hope to millions of Americans beyond the localities where the elections took place. The response to Trumpism did not turn out to be apathy, but rather anger. And determination. If this can be replicated next year, it will go a long way towards saving America from the ongoing disaster in the Oval Office.

    Good luck with that.

    Personally, I'm pinning my hopes on director Mueller.

  8. [8] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    By the way, Chris, you live in California so, at least you've got Jerry Brown as the quintessential up-wing governor, for a while anyway.

    On a hopeful, note ... the one good thing about the Trump presidency, for however long it may last, is that a great space has opened up for up-wing leaders to shine, domestically and internationally, and it would do us all a great deal of good to focus on the future-oriented political leaders out there who advocate for enlightened policies that aim to put America back on track and assume its proper global leadership role.

  9. [9] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    There, I feel better already. I love this place!

  10. [10] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    LizM -

    You've been a steady supporter for so long I can't even remember it now, so your kind words are certainly appreciated.

    I'm really not fishing for compliments (or donations) with this column, it's been on my mind for a long time now and I felt it was necessary to share my feelings. Like I said, I'm not ordinarily the touchy-feely type, but at times it does seem appropriate.

    As for Jerry Brown, the good news is he'll probably be replaced by Gavin Newsom, who is one of my favorite up-and-comers on the Dem side of the aisle. A few years of leading CA, and maybe he'll be ready for a presidential run? Him v. Kamala Harris would certainly be an interesting choice to make, for a Californian!

    Didn't Canuckistan already have Thanksgiving? Or maybe they're having it a few weeks from now? I get confused... (heh). But it certainly explains why you're the only one free to comment tonight! Everyone else is probably traveling....

    As for changing the site, my goal is to change the underlying technology while keeping as much of the "look and feel" of the site as possible. I may shrink it down to two columns rather than three (only one sidebar list of stuff), but I guarantee I won't make the switch if it involves any major redesign of the layout. I too like the way it looks, and aim to keep it... while still making it A WHOLE LOT EASIER for people to read on their smartphones. Also, this will help with Google searches, which could bring more readers.

    In any case, thanks for all the warm thoughts. Stronger together indeed!

    :-)

    -CW

  11. [11] 
    neilm wrote:

    CW:

    I read your column every day. About 5:30pm PST I check in, hoping it will be early, and then refresh until the next column appears.

    I may not comment as much as I did, but that is because my anger has abated and I'm back to being more lackadaisical ... and frankly, happy.

    I'm going to commit to repeat last year's donation if you repeat your pledge drive, so assume if you do, we expect, but more importantly, need you to be there articulating clearly what we want to say ourselves, and broadcasting items we don't see elsewhere.

    I'm just glad Michale's back - hey buddy reply to emails to let me know you are OK if you are going awol for a while - I worried about you ;)

  12. [12] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Personal message to "Drowbert101" -

    Sorry for the delay, your comments to yesterday's article have been posted, at numbers [13] and [24].

    Again, sorry for the delay. From now on, you should be able to see your comments appear instantly.

    -CW

  13. [13] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    neilm [11] -

    Yeah, my target for posting is when the evening news runs here (5:30), but sometimes I just don't make the deadline...

    :-)

    I have privately communicated with Michale and he assures me that he made it through the FL hurricane season OK. I was worried, too, since he disappeared right when they all hit...

    -CW

  14. [14] 
    neilm wrote:

    By the way ... the site is fine. The biggest bugbear I see repeatedly is that we can't edit posts for a short while after they have been posted (or maybe that is just me).

    Anyway, really it is the quality of your posts and the banter in the comments that make this valuable, not the look and feel.

  15. [15] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    neilm -

    Oh, and thanks for the very kind words. They keep me going. If I didn't think people enjoyed it, I would have stopped a long time ago!

    :-)

    -CW

  16. [16] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    neilm [14] -

    I have a LONG list of upgrades to make, and editing comments is indeed one of them, high on the list...

    But I make no promises now.

    -CW

  17. [17] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    I can't help but feel somewhat responsible for at least a portion of your depression...

    While I do pride myself on being a very good and gracious loser, I sometimes have a problem with being a very good and gracious winner...

    In my defense, the downright near hysteria of the anti-Trump comments puts me in... what was it that was said...??? "Full commando mode"... :D

    I mean, seriously... All sorts of body-shaming and personal attacks from a room full of liberals is NOT the norm, in any way, shape or form..

    "That rhymes, Marge!! That rhymes and you know it!!!"
    -Homer Simpson

    But regardless... For whatever contributions I have made to your depression, you have my deepest and heartfelt apologies..

    And I can understand how you feel.. I am generally speaking, a cup is half full kind of person... I would probably be dragged down into the dumps as well, if Hillary had been elected POTUS... So I can understand how you are feeling..

    As to the mechanics of the site.... I am with Neil.. Pretty much the only thing that is needed, IMNSHO is an EDIT function... Something along the lines of say a 5 min edit window where you can fix formatting and spelling errors... Everything else, at least on the front end, is great... A way to post inline pictures would be really awesome too....

    I am happy that you found some optimism to push forward...

    We can talk about THAT later.. :D

    All in all, I am glad you are sticking around.. A world without Weigantia?? Now THAT would be REALLY depressing...

  18. [18] 
    Michale wrote:

    I'm just glad Michale's back - hey buddy reply to emails to let me know you are OK if you are going awol for a while - I worried about you ;)

    Yea, it had been a rough season for us.. We moved here in '97 and I have to say that this past hurricane season was the worst... Not so much from a damage perspective but for personal...

    When Irma roared thru, it took part of our roof with it.. We also had our car completely destroyed. It was the car that my mom had left us when she died, so that was personally devastating.. And to top it off, unrelated to the hurricane, my uncle had died...

    FEMA was absolutely NO HELP this year and our auto insurance would only cover a third of what we needed...

    So, I was pretty much mad at the world for quite a while.. I still had an online presence, but I didn't really want to be around friends, if that makes any sense..

    So, anyways, yer all caught up...

    Thanx for the concern... It is really appreciated..

  19. [19] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    "I'm not ordinarily a touchy-feely type, but at times it does seem appropriate."

    Haven't you been paying attention?

    Touching and feeling is what got so many people in trouble recently and it is NEVER appropriate. :D

  20. [20] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    "And I can understand how you feel. ...I would probably be dragged down into the dumps if Hillary had been elected POTUS."

    I hope that others here will follow Michale's example and try to understand how I must feel, as the "two sides" keep jockeying for control while pretending that the battle is between the Democrats and Republicans when it is really about Big Money Democrats and Republicans against the rest of us.

  21. [21] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    But I will acknowledge that you did indirectly provide some insight on why you haven't provided an explanation of why you haven't addressed One Demand.

    Hope that fits in somewhere not too far down the line.

  22. [22] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    CW,

    I hope you and your loved ones have a great Thanksgiving holiday! (Ditto to everyone else, as well!).

    I thoroughly enjoy reading your columns and the comments. I feel that I have gained a much better understanding of our political system thanks to my time on this site. As I have said before, I had always considered myself a moderate Republican until 2008. I grew up accepting everything that I was told by the GOP, because for the most part it made sense. (And as a closeted Southern Baptist-raised homo, to disagree with a GOP talking point could result in being asked, “What, are you a FAG?”). Heck, until I was 25 I thought gay rights were special rights that gay people wanted that no one else would qualify for.

    It wasn’t until I was challenged by a friend and I started fact-checking what I was being told that I realized just how dishonest the GOP was. The Democrats aren’t saints, but they are generally much more honest with the public. Then I realized that if the Republicans had been honest, what they were claiming would NOT have made sense to support! No one likes to admit that they were duped.

    Probably the greatest thing about your site for me is that I have never doubted the honesty in what you have stated. I might not agree with you on all matters, but I feel confident that I am not being manipulated by intentionally dishonest statements. While you are definitely liberal, you aren’t dismissive of Republican ideas just because they are from Republicans; you judge them on their merits. That has become too rare of a trait these days.

    Until we require news stations to give both sides of a debate equal time, we will be a nation divided. It was tough to get over almost 25 years of constantly hearing that Hillary Clinton was a crook and cast a vote for her. Propaganda is a powerful tool that wouldn’t be used so often if it didn’t get results. Trump is president today not because so many people voted for him, but because so many voted against Hillary.

  23. [23] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Listen-
    Actually we are a nation divided because the news stations ONLY give two sides instead of ALL sides. There are often more than "two sides".

    And if we require news stations to maintain the divide we will not be united, we will be divided and conquered. The last thing we need is for the government to control the news media.

    Unfortunately, the same Big Money interests that control our politicians also control most of the media.

    That is the subject of the email I tried to send to CW from Nicholas Johnson. When Nicholas Johnson was on the Ralph Nader Radio Hour they were discussing how the media was controlled by about six large conglomerates and one of then was trying to buy another one of them, Time Warner. They also talked about how public broadcasting had been infiltrated by corporate sponsors.

    While I was listening to the show I thought a possible solution might be to form a non-profit private corporation to form our own media conglomerate.

    I suggested that if we could sell ten million shares at 100 dollars a share we could raise 1 billion dollars and maybe we could buy Time Warner or enough media to form our own conglomerate.

    (Does this sound familiar to anyone?)

    These shares would be for ownership of the corporation. There would be no dividends. The shares would only be allowed to be sold for 100 dollars, can only be owned by Americans citizens and no citizen could own more than 10 shares.

    So just about 5 Million people (less than 2% of the population) could form our own news network to present all the news the Big Money media will not provide.

    I asked both Nicholas Johnson and Ralph if they would be interested in setting up an organization so citizens could pledge to buy shares to test interest in this idea.

    Haven't heard from Ralph, but Nicholas Johnson said he thought my ideas were creative (including One Demand) and said he appreciated my efforts to be the kind of Public Citizen that Ralph Nader asks people to be.

  24. [24] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    CW-
    If you're looking for a different kind of media outlet see comment 23.

  25. [25] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @cw,

    i feel your pain.

    JL

  26. [26] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    LWYH

    "Propaganda is a powerful tool that wouldn't be used so much if it didn't get results".

    It's also worth noting that the candidate who spends the most money to buy the most propaganda does NOT always win!

  27. [27] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    CR Stucki-
    Unfortunately they still lose to another propaganda candidate.
    Whether it's propaganda or the Big Money that fuels and uses it, the Big Money interests win no matter which CMP wins an election.

  28. [28] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Unfortunately they still lose to another propaganda candidate.

    False.

  29. [29] 
    John M wrote:

    [36] Elizabeth Miller

    "It doesn't say anything I did not already know...

    Really, John? You knew that William Bradley trekked up Africa's tallest peak?"

    Petulance is hardly ever becoming.

    I did know however that glacial retreat has accelerated significantly worldwide over the last few years before reading the article.

    I do not however keep tabs on the activities of everyone on the planet. I will leave that to those who care and have the time to peruse the blogs of those who document daily every event of every minute of their lives in excruciating detail no matter how small or insignificant.

    As for missing the whole point of the piece, I really have no idea what you are talking about....

    What great intellectual point did I miss? Climate change and questions regarding? Global and national responses to? Is the Paris accord agreement enough? Are world leaders looking to American actors other than the President as an alternative? What are the responses of those self-same alternative up-wing politicians?

    Doesn't that completely cover it? Or is there more?

  30. [30] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    Propaganda is defined as:

    information, especially of a biased or misleading nature, used to promote or publicize a particular political cause or point of view

    Political campaign ads do not count as “propaganda” unless they are intentionally misleading.

    Mitt Romney’s political ads in 2012 claiming that Obama had shut down a Jeep Cherokee plant continued to run even after the automaker issued a statement clarifying that the plant closed while Bush, not Obama, was president. That is propaganda.

    Nine congressional investigations into Benghazi that allowed Republicans to keep accusations that Hillary was responsible for the deaths while never producing findings that supported the accusations was propaganda.

    Sadly, the GOP filed a lawsuit that sought to allow them to knowingly make untrue statements in their political ads without being held legally culpable for any damages that result from people believing their lies.... and they WON! That case alone should make most Republican voters question why they support the GOP!

  31. [31] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale [17] -

    Actually, you have been the least of my worries. While I appreciate the sentiments:

    While I do pride myself on being a very good and gracious loser, I sometimes have a problem with being a very good and gracious winner...

    the same could be said for all us liberals. We do (as does everyone) tend to enjoy the heck out of spiking the football in the end zone, as it were...

    No, it hasn't been you, it's been reality. And your comments, bragging or comiserating, haven't really impacted that for me. I mean, I EXPECT you to take your positions, so it's no real surprise when you do. Does that make sense?

    So while I appreciate your apologies, I can't say that your comments added in any way to what I've been feeling. But thanks anyway!

    :-)

    As for editing comments, yeah, yeah, let me look into it... there may be several different ways to make this happen....

    -CW

  32. [32] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Don Harris [19] -

    OK, now THAT was funny!

    :-)

    -CW

  33. [33] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    ListenWhenYouHear [22] -

    You, Sir, are the reason I blog.

    No, seriously. I thank you deeply for the sentiments, because they positively reflect the reason I started doing this in the first place.

    I dedicated this blog to "reality-based political commentary," and I have tried ever since to live up to that lofty goal. What this means, at a nuts-and-bolts level, is considering both arguments on their merits. OK, on Fridays, I do tend to get a bit propaganda-ish, but then the title of the column should warn people about that, right?

    On all other days, my biggest concern in writing an article is how the counterarguments will be made to it. I was never on a debate team in school, but understand inately that cutting out the other side at their knees before they've even got a chance to respond is a valuable thing.

    So I sit down, think "I will support X," while also thinking "what will the Y-supporters say about that?" And then I try to dismantle the counteragruments before they happen.

    I state what I honestly think, and I can't count the number of columns I have never written because I could not defend the position when I started to think of the other side's arguments. If it doesn't stand the acid test, then it's not worth writing, in other words.

    But anyway, thanks for being genuinely persuadable. Writing this stuff isn't just an exercise in preaching to the choir... it also means attempting to convince those on the other side of their mistaken views. Occasionally, this actually happens. It's rare, but again, that's the sort of thing that keeps me going -- the possibility that someone out there can be persuaded by a cogent argument.

    :-)

    -CW

  34. [34] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    nypoet22 [25] -

    You and a lot of others, I'm sure. Seriously, every freakin' morning... "Are we STILL living in this nightmare?!?"

    :-)

    -CW

  35. [35] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    So while I appreciate your apologies, I can't say that your comments added in any way to what I've been feeling. But thanks anyway!

    You mean, I am not the wind beneath your wings!!???

    "Ouch, baby... Ouch.."
    -Austin Powers

    :D

    You and a lot of others, I'm sure. Seriously, every freakin' morning... "Are we STILL living in this nightmare?!?"

    But here's the thing...

    For tens of millions of Americans, it's a dream come true...

    Can't ya'all at least TRY to see it from their point of view???

    It might make things better for everyone, eh???

  36. [36] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Lighten up, John and, take it easy, and all that ...

  37. [37] 
    Michale wrote:

    And this anti-Trump hysteria is downright perplexing, considering that, when Trump was a Democrat, he was honored six ways from Sunday BY Democrats..

    That is why I can't view ya'all's anti-Trump stance as ANYTHING but Party loyalty driven...

  38. [38] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    The point, John, if you truly do not know, is that the know-nothing Trump presidency has opened up space for the up-wing leaders of your country to shine.

    Let them!

    And, let there be light. :)

  39. [39] 
    Michale wrote:

    Lighten up, John and, take it easy, and all that ...

    "Lighten up, Francis.."
    -Sgt Hulka, STRIPES

    :D

  40. [40] 
    Michale wrote:

    The point, John, if you truly do not know, is that the know-nothing Trump presidency has opened up space for the up-wing leaders of your country to shine.

    Let them!

    And, let there be light. :)

    Unless there is another Obama in the crowd, none of these upwing leaders will have any impact until at least 2024...

  41. [41] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    [36] Elizabeth Miller

    What thread is that from???

    Okay, John ... you have to stop doing that!

  42. [42] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Go back to bed, Michale.

  43. [43] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    It's rare, but again, that's the sort of thing that keeps me going -- the possibility that someone out there can be persuaded by a cogent argument.

    Good luck with that.

  44. [44] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Don,

    I hope that others here will follow Michale's example and try to understand how I must feel ...

    Not until they get a grip on how I must feel.

    In other words, wait your turn. Ahem.

  45. [45] 
    Michale wrote:

    Go back to bed, Michale.

    Would that I could..

    But my day starts at 0400 whether I like it or not.. :D

  46. [46] 
    Michale wrote:

    But hay, I'll give ya a choice..

    You want to talk about STAR TREK DISCOVERY and THE ORVILLE and the awesome that is the new SUPERNATURAL???

    or

    Whether Al Fraken should be supported or be forced to resign??

  47. [47] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I'm really not fishing for compliments (or donations) with this column, it's been on my mind for a long time now and I felt it was necessary to share my feelings.

    I know, Chris. For some time now, I have sensed how you must be feeling and how all of this has affected you, especially as a reality-based journalist in this era of fact-free governance.

    If I were you, I would just focus on Governor Brown and his possible successors and the great position California finds itself in as the know-nothing Trump administration steers itself into irrelevancy and eventual doom, opening up vast spaces of operation for the up-wing leadership of your state and country.

  48. [48] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Al Fraken??

  49. [49] 
    Michale wrote:

    Or, we can talk about how Hillary and the DNC are ensnared in the whole Russia Election mess and will lose much MUCH more than Trump..

    Yer call.. :D

  50. [50] 
    Michale wrote:

    Al Fraken??

    Franken.. :D

  51. [51] 
    Michale wrote:

    If I were you, I would just focus on Governor Brown and his possible successors and the great position California finds itself in as the know-nothing Trump administration steers itself into irrelevancy and eventual doom, opening up vast spaces of operation for the up-wing leadership of your state and country.

    And yet, we have the REALITY where Trump's actions are being well received by the world at large, his foreign trips have been un-mitigated and inarguable successes...

    If ya'all have ANY hope of being taken seriously in the coming years, ya'all HAVE to admit that President Trump is doing a better job than ya'all thought possible...

  52. [52] 
    Michale wrote:

    OK Star Trek Discovery it is.. :D I'll try to keep my comments generic to avoid spoilers..

    I was really prepared to hate Discovery... I mean, just on the basis of the acronym alone!!

    ST:D

    I mean, who does that!!??? That's like Obama's slogan WinTheFuture...

    Sometimes ya REALLY have to think things out, eh??

    But seriously, I was prepared to hate Discovery..

    It's very first announcement?? "oooooooOOOOooo look how diverse we are!!! Look that we have a black female lead!!! oooooooo Aren't we so awesome and diverse and politically correct!!!"

    So, yea... It didn't get off to a good start with me... But, since it's Trek, of course I watched it..

    Then I discovered a new reason to hate it...

    Gene Roddenberry must be spinning in his grave...

    One of the biggest things that made Star Trek such a phenomenon was CONSISTENCY...

    What is established in STAR TREK TOS binds what happens in STAR TREK TNG..... When it's mentioned that there was a massive Klingon upheaval that caused the difference in appearance between TOS and TNG in DS9, it's explained in detail in Star Trek Enterprise..

    CONSISTENCY... What is referred to in the Trek universe as "Canon"...

    And Canon is tossed right out the window in Discovery...

    Just a couple of examples..

    The holographic communication system in Discovery was brand new technology in Deep Space Nine's time.. And yet, it's installed on a starship a decade before TOS...

    Canon violation!!

    The afore mentioned Klingons.. Enterprise established that Klingons should look, more or less human.. Discovery's Klingons look like... well, I don't know WHAT they look like, but they are NOT Klingons..

    OK, so we have all the reasons why I hate Discovery..

    But, a funny thing happened on the way to the mid-season finale...

    It got awesome!!!

    Captain Lorca is kick ass!! A worthy predecessor to James Tiberius Kirk.. And he has a pet tribble!!!! How awesome is that!!!

    The action is very Trek'ian.. Starfleet is pretty consistent..

    And my gods, they have Harcourt Fenton Mudd!!! :D

    Slight canon violation here... Discovery's Mudd is a sadistic psychopathic killer... Kirk's Mudd was a lovable scoundrel, a slightly more criminal Han Solo...

    Speaking of Han Solo...

    Fun Fact... Theory runs that the Indiana Jones movies are nothing but dreams of Han Solo while he is frozen in carbonite.. :D

    Moving on....

    But, other than the personality differences, the appearance of Mudd was a welcome boon...

    So, all in all, I would give Star Trek Discovery a B+... It would be an AAA+++ if there weren't the canon issues..

    But I am a Trek purist at heart, so.....

    Anyways, that's my take on ST:D :D....

  53. [53] 
    neilm wrote:

    ya'all HAVE to admit that President Trump is doing a better job than ya'all thought possible...

    Yup - I thought he might actually be competent enough to do something. He has done nothing apart from sign in new judges that were picked for him.

    He managed to sink the "repeal Obamacare" effort singlehandedly. He has dramatically weakened our standing in the World leaving the door open for China.

    Or can we have a list of real achievements beyond disgusting most of us?

    Remember when I repeatedly asked you before the election what you wanted 45 to achieve and you came up with "be nice to bad cops"?

  54. [54] 
    neilm wrote:

    Damn - that is why I need the quick edit feature - assume I'd typed ">" instead of "?".

  55. [55] 
    Michale wrote:

    Damn - that is why I need the quick edit feature - assume I'd typed ">" instead of "?".

    Heh Been there...

    Yup - I thought he might actually be competent enough to do something. He has done nothing apart from sign in new judges that were picked for him.

    Ahhh but he has done so much more.. I made a list.. :D Of course it was spinned away by partisans, but it's factually accurate...

    He managed to sink the "repeal Obamacare" effort singlehandedly. He has dramatically weakened our standing in the World leaving the door open for China.

    Factually not accurate... After President Trumps NOT GONNA APOLOGIZE AT ALL tours, the US prestige abroad is at new heights..

    which is why Trump's approval ratings are higher than Macron's, May's or Merkel's....

    How can that be if Merkel is the new leader of the free world?? :D

    Remember when I repeatedly asked you before the election what you wanted 45 to achieve and you came up with "be nice to bad cops"?

    Nope.. Never said that...

    PRESIDENT Trump is succeeding beyond all my hopes.. He has actually restored American confidence and American pride.. Something I NEVER thought possible, considering how badly Obama frak'ed it up...

    :D

  56. [56] 
    Michale wrote:

    Heh Been there...

    "I woke up this morning with a hangover and a swore wrist."
    "Yeah, I've been there."

    -Spin City

    :D

  57. [57] 
    neilm wrote:

    Ahhh but he has done so much more.. I made a list.. :D

    Oh goody, let's see it.

    PRESIDENT Trump is succeeding beyond all my hopes.. He has actually restored American confidence and American pride.. Something I NEVER thought possible, considering how badly Obama frak'ed it up...

    When was the last time you were abroad? 45 is a disaster, and if American pride is so high why do over 56% of people think he is hopeless? (source: https://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/other/president_trump_job_approval-6179.html)

  58. [58] 
    Michale wrote:

    Oh goody, let's see it.

    You won't like it.. It's so adorned with pro-Trump FACTS, it will make you physically ill... :D

    http://www.chrisweigant.com/2017/11/21/busy-december-ahead-for-congress/#comment-110666

    When was the last time you were abroad? 45 is a disaster, and if American pride is so high why do over 56% of people think he is hopeless? (source:

    I think it's so cute how you still put your faith in polls when their credibility took such a HUGE hit last year.. :D

    Trump supporters only care about 1 poll.. The poll at the ballot box...

    So, all the polls you quote are from people who are hysterical NeverTrumpers..

    As such, it's amazing that President Trump is polling so well.. :D

    And don't think I didn't notice that you ignored the FACT that Trump's approval numbers are better than Merkel, Macron AND May... :D

  59. [59] 
    neilm wrote:

    Does your list include:

    1. Getting Mexico to pay for the wall?
    2. Getting rid of Obamacare on Day 1?
    3. The plan he gave Generals to defeat ISIS in 100 days?

    Or is it just that he makes you feel good?

    I called you on this in December:

    http://www.chrisweigant.com/2016/12/01/welcome-to-our-annual-holiday-pledge-drive/#comment-89683

  60. [60] 
    Michale wrote:

    But com'on... Let's save the politics until next commentary! :D

    What do you think of Discovery???

    Have you watched The Orville yet??? :D

  61. [61] 
    Michale wrote:

    1. Getting Mexico to pay for the wall?
    2. Getting rid of Obamacare on Day 1?
    3. The plan he gave Generals to defeat ISIS in 100 days?

    Campaign hyperbole..

    Did you turn on Odumbo because he didn't close Gitmo???

  62. [62] 
    neilm wrote:

    Oh, and Happy Holidays - you see - he hasn't even been able to force me to say "Merry Christmas".

    Let's face it, 45 makes angry Americans feel good because he irritates the people they hate. That is basically the sum of his achievements.

    The problem is that all he is doing is making more angry people - I've been amazed at the level of political belligerence in my "Happy Valley" community. Basically they look at the rural red areas and say "screw them".

    If they don't understand that defunding medicaid means that more rural hospitals will close due to economic reasons and they will have no hospitals, screw them.

    If they don't understand that attacking welfare programs will disproportionately impact rural areas, screw them.

    If they can't take the time to understand net neutrality and can kiss broadband away then screw them.

    If they don't see that the tax proposals will swing the pendulum even more towards capital at the expense of labor, screw them.

    Sadly a lot of innocent non-45 supporters will be hurt too, but lall of those that couldn't be bothered to vote for Hillary when they could see the writing on the wall - well screw them too.

    AS I said, I live in Happy Valley - and Happy Valley has developed an extreme case of "screw the rest of you".

  63. [63] 
    neilm wrote:

    Did you turn on Odumbo because he didn't close Gitmo???

    Ah, "whataboutism" - nice try, but fail. Gitmo was a low level goal in 2008, not his top three "chanting" points.

  64. [64] 
    Michale wrote:

    I called you on this in December:

    http://www.chrisweigant.com/2016/12/01/welcome-to-our-annual-holiday-pledge-drive/#comment-89683

    And remember what I responded with???

    It's going to be the Reagan years all over again...

    Pride in America will be fashionable again...

    THAT's what I call "results"....

    080

    Damned if I didn't call that one dead on ballz accurate!! :D

  65. [65] 
    Michale wrote:

    Ah, "whataboutism" - nice try, but fail.

    Not whataboutism... Simply established your motives.. :D

    Gitmo was a low level goal in 2008, not his top three "chanting" points.

    Semantics.. To those who wanted Gitmo closed, it was a pretty big deal.. :D

  66. [66] 
    neilm wrote:

    Pride in America will be fashionable again...

    Yeah, we are so proud of America and what our leader has done that over 56% of us think he is doing a bad job.

    Get a grip Michale - this is the weakest claim you can make - the numbers are horrible for you.

  67. [67] 
    Michale wrote:

    Oh, and Happy Holidays - you see - he hasn't even been able to force me to say "Merry Christmas".

    Did you really expect him to??

    But he HAS forced the NFL to face those that shit on the country, the flag, the military and the anthem..

    The problem is that all he is doing is making more angry people -

    No.. he is making angry people angrier...

    Big woop...

  68. [68] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yeah, we are so proud of America and what our leader has done that over 56% of us think he is doing a bad job.

    Again, it's SOOOO cute that you quote polls that have ZERO credibility... :D

    Get a grip Michale - this is the weakest claim you can make - the numbers are horrible for you.

    Yea???

    They were also horrible numbers on 7 Nov 2016...

    We know what happened next... :D

    Your problem is that you think that the numbers paint the WHOLE picture..

    I would have thought you would have learned yer lesson about that..

    But Party zealotry runs deep... :D

  69. [69] 
    Michale wrote:

    Here is a discussion about The Orville if anyone is interested.. :D

    https://disqus.com/home/discussion/channel-scifi/the_orvile_sci_fi_or_comedy/

  70. [70] 
    neilm wrote:

    So, you're OK paying for the wall instead of Mexico? How about Mr "I'm worth 10 Billion" pays for it himself rather than making the rest of us pay for something that won't work?

    Here is a list of 45's failures, since you won't give us a list of his achievements beyond "He makes me feel good".

    1. No wall.
    2. Mexico have no plans to pay for it, directly or indirectly.
    3. No ISIS plan - even worse, Obama's plan is actually working and ISIS are losing most of their territory
    4. Hillary is free (as she should be)
    5. Obamacare still the law of the land 300 days after "Day 1"
    6. NAFTA is still in place
    7. China have not been declared a "currency manipulator", in fact 45 basically writes fan mail to Xi.

    Other little gems that 45 didn't promise, but don't exactly make him look good:
    1. America's diplomatic corps are being gutted from within
    2. America's Navy can't stop hitting other ships
    3. North Korea is launching more missiles and escalating their nuclear testing
    4. The balance of trade with China is still massive

    Yet you are proud. I'd say delusional, but then you had to be to fall for so obvious a con man in the first place.

  71. [71] 
    neilm wrote:

    As usual, no list of achievements and no evidence to support the claim that people are more proud of America than before - in fact only attempts to run away from the obvious evidence that points in the other direction.

  72. [72] 
    Michale wrote:

    I just LOVE existential dilemmas... :D

    WASHINGTON — Consider this hypothetical:

    It’s a bright, sunny day and you’re alone in your spanking new self-driving vehicle, sprinting along the two-lane Tunnel of Trees on M-119 high above Lake Michigan north of Harbor Springs. You’re sitting back, enjoying the view. You’re looking out through the trees, trying to get a glimpse of the crystal blue water below you, moving along at the 45-mile-an-hour speed limit.

    As you approach a rise in the road, heading south, a school bus appears, driving north, one driven by a human, and it veers sharply toward you. There is no time to stop safely, and no time for you to take control of the car.

    Does the car:

    A. Swerve sharply into the trees, possibly killing you but possibly saving the bus and its occupants?

    B. Perform a sharp evasive maneuver around the bus and into the oncoming lane, possibly saving you, but sending the bus and its driver swerving into the trees, killing her and some of the children on board?

    C. Hit the bus, possibly killing you as well as the driver and kids on the bus?

    What's ya'all thoughts???

    For me, I won't drive in an auto-car that doesn't put my family's lives as their number one priority...

    I see the moral dilemma of such an attitude, but morals go out the window when the safety of one's family is on the line....

  73. [73] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yet you are proud. I'd say delusional, but then you had to be to fall for so obvious a con man in the first place.

    A 'con man' that Democrats loved, honored and applauded when he had a -D after his name..

    Funny how you can't address that.. :D

    - in fact only attempts to run away from the obvious evidence that points in the other direction.

    Your only "evidence" is evidence whose credibility has been totally whacked out of existence...

    Funny how you can't address THAT either. :D

  74. [74] 
    Michale wrote:

    3. North Korea is launching more missiles and escalating their nuclear testing

    You can thank Odumbo for that...

  75. [75] 
    neilm wrote:

    A 'con man' that Democrats loved, honored and applauded when he had a -D after his name..

    Not even close - wow you are desperate - 45 has been a clown since day 1 - he was barely known outside of NYC before his sad little show, and NYC thought he was an idiot - NYC voted 90% for Hillary - they knew who the village idiot was and that he was a con man.

  76. [76] 
    Michale wrote:

    Your only "evidence" is evidence whose credibility has been totally whacked out of existence...

    Funny how you can't address THAT either. :D

    Seriously... Take away your poll numbers and you have absolutely NO argument other than an emotional one..

  77. [77] 
    Michale wrote:

    Not even close - wow you are desperate - 45 has been a clown since day 1 -

    Really??

    Then how come he was awarded The Ellis Island Medal Of Honor alongside Rosa Parks??

    Why did Jesse Jackson practically fellaite Donald Trump on national television honoring Trump for a "LIFETIME OF SERVICE TO AFRICAN AMERICAN COMMUNITIES"???

    Once again, more facts that you simply cannot address because they totally decimate your argument..

    - he was barely known outside of NYC before his sad little show,

    Really?? And yet, he has been on Simpsons, Family Guy, Futurama and a host of other NATIONAL media shows..

    Com'on Neil.. Now yer just getting emotional...

  78. [78] 
    Michale wrote:
  79. [79] 
    Michale wrote:

    Black Americans and Democrats LOVED Donald Trump...

    These are facts that NO AMOUNT of spin can erase...

  80. [80] 
    neilm wrote:

    Then how come he was awarded The Ellis Island Medal Of Honor alongside Rosa Parks??

    Yeah, and 80 other people at the same time - basically it was a gong for nothing.

  81. [81] 
    Michale wrote:

    To NFL millionaires on Thanksgiving, be thankful and get off your knees already

    On this Thanksgiving, I would like to address an open letter to the multimillionaire National Football League players who continue to take a knee when “The Star-Spangled Banner” is played.

    Dear kneeling brothers,

    As a proud Army veteran, mom and black American, I thank God that I live in the greatest nation on Earth. For me, Thanksgiving doesn’t just come once a year. I’m thankful 365 days a year.

    I recommend you take the same attitude, to appreciate the many blessings you enjoy.

    You make far, far more money than almost all Americans – regardless of race. Kids look up to you as heroes. You appear on TV and in the media.

    Yet, you keep on protesting – refusing to rise and respect our national anthem and respect the men and women like me who serve or have served in our military.

    I was willing to die for my country when I put on the Army uniform. And you’re not even willing to stand up for a short song? This is too much of a sacrifice for you?
    http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2017/11/23/to-nfl-millionaires-on-thanksgiving-be-thankful-and-get-off-your-knees-already.html

    Yep.. yep... yep....

  82. [82] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yeah, and 80 other people at the same time - basically it was a gong for nothing.

    WOW...

    Way to diss Rosa Parks...

  83. [83] 
    Michale wrote:

    No matter how you try to spin it, Donald Trump was a god to the Democrats when Trump had a -D after his name..

    This is well-documented fact...

    But I can understand why you have to ignore it...

    Because it totally and unequivocally demolishes your argument in the here and now...

  84. [84] 
    neilm wrote:

    Really?? And yet, he has been on Simpsons, Family Guy, Futurama and a host of other NATIONAL media shows..

    After 2004 "The Apprentice" gave his wider fame outside of NYC.

    Futurama - 2012
    Family Guy - 2017 (most people had heard of him by then)
    Simpsons - as the totally ridiculous future in 2000.

    He was the model for "Biff" in "Back to the Future", so you could claim that one.

    Thinking back, do you remember why he was a Democrat?

    "It just seems that the economy does better under the Democrats than the Republicans. Now, it shouldn't be that way. But if you go back, I mean it just seems that the economy does better under the Democrats. ... But certainly we had some very good economies under Democrats, as well as Republicans. But we've had some pretty bad disasters under the Republicans." in 2004

    Let's hope we don't have another Republican financial disaster.

  85. [85] 
    neilm wrote:

    This is well-documented fact...

    Then document it. And don't trot out silly gongs - give us the calls to run for office, etc.

    Show us where his "thinking" is expounded in Democratic platforms.

    If you mean they took his money because he was a real estate developer in NYC and they were in power, then all you are doing is making Don's One Demand argument for him.

  86. [86] 
    Michale wrote:

    Then document it.

    I did.. You dumped on one of the greatest black American heroes to refute it..

    You ignored the Jesse Jackson tribute...

    You have no rebuttal because the FACTS decimate your argument..

  87. [87] 
    neilm wrote:

    Well, by your claim, he achieved more as a Democrat than he has as a Republican - but then we would expect that, and even he did in 2004.

    Would you have voted for him if he had a -D after his name?

  88. [88] 
    neilm wrote:

    Oh, and that Carrier thing you got all excited about ... sadly it was just another con.

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2017/11/08/more-layoffs-planned-at-carrier-plant-trump-promised-to-save.html

  89. [89] 
    Michale wrote:

    Well, by your claim, he achieved more as a Democrat than he has as a Republican -

    Well, except for that whole President Of The United States thing.. :D

    Would you have voted for him if he had a -D after his name?

    Honestly?? If it had been Romney -R running and Trump -D running???

    I would have voted for Trump...

    This was an election where the NON-ESTABLISHMENT candidate was going to win..

    So, yea.. I would have voted for Democrat Trump..

    And YOU would have too... :D

    Oh, and that Carrier thing you got all excited about ... sadly it was just another con.

    Just like Obama's chumming up with Russia???

    OR.... Maybe circumstances changed in the interim that were beyond the control of the respective POTUSes...

    Hmmmm????

  90. [90] 
    neilm wrote:

    So, yea.. I would have voted for Democrat Trump..

    And YOU would have too... :D

    I'd have voted for Romney. No brainer. It would have been a repeat of 2000-2008 but with a more competent leader than W.

    Romney would have won in a landslide - the educated Democrats would have switched in a heartbeat. I know my people, and going to Paris with a buffoon in the White House isn't their cup of tea. Trust me.

  91. [91] 
    neilm wrote:

    Well, by your claim, he achieved more as a Democrat than he has as a Republican -

    Well, except for that whole President Of The United States thing.. :D

    But you still can't list any achievements except you feeling good about him and he supports letting bad cops off the hook.

    Why is that? And why do you want a blanket sainthood for the cops that even other cops hate?

    My ex-teammate who is a sergeant in the SFPD was talking about this at a BBQ - he needs the people on his side when he is on the street and the bad cops who shoot people in the back make his life more difficult and more dangerous. Not all accused cops are guilty (for instance I've never believed Darren Wilson was in the wrong) but the blanket pardon from Republicans who can see no wrong in any police action is myopic and dangerous - to cops as well as the public.

    45 has done nothing except sign papers McConnell and Ryan have put in front of him - when he remembers to (he keeps forgetting his role at the party they throw for him to make him feel good - I mean he only has one thing to do at these events and he has forgotten even that on occasion).

    He had no plan to improve our health care system.

    He had no plan to get Mexico to pay for the wall, despite your repeated insistence that they would.

    He does not know what he is doing.

    He congratulates himself on managing to go to S.E. Asia for 12 days on Air Force 1 - I did three weeks on commercial flights and had to make my own way from airports to meetings and my hotels, but I'd have been laughed at if I went back to the office and told everybody that nobody had ever done that before.

    He is just what we knew all along, an ignorant blow hard whose curiosity stops at the end of his nose - and you elected this clown into the White House.

  92. [92] 
    Michale wrote:

    I know my people,

    And yet, tens of millions of "your people" voted for Donald Trump..

    Maybe you don't know them as well as you would like to think you do.. :D

  93. [93] 
    Michale wrote:

    But you still can't list any achievements except you feeling good about him and he supports letting bad cops off the hook.

    I listed dozens of achievements..

    And I never claimed I wanted Trump to let bad cops off the hook.. If you can't stay within the realm of FACTS, this conversation is useless...

  94. [94] 
    TheStig wrote:

    I've been a faithful reader of CW.com since (by my reckoning) 2012. It is a remarkable feat of one man journalism. I've often wondered about the level of stress that must accompany putting out high quality material on such a timely basis. Not surprisingly, the stress is high.

    I've held off replying because I wanted to parse this latest CW column very carefully.

    One sentence in the latest column really stands out in my mind:

    “One big thing that kept me going was the concept of giving good value for the money.”

    This is the fundamental problem of distributing fact based information in the internet age. The investment needed to get into the game is currently very low by historical standards... a GoPro and editing software is very affordable compared to a printing press and an editorial staff. Downloading (some would say stealing) somebody's material is much cheaper than hiring reporters. Internet access is very cheap compared to postage stamps, trucks and broadcast facilities. The net result (pardon the unintended pun) is a vast gossip fence populated mostly by untalented amateurs who drown out the professionals trying to give news value for a customer's dollar.

    There are professionals who see business opportunities at the the Internet Gossip Fence. They are propagandists (advertisements are a form of sophisticated propaganda) in the business of distributing misinformation to shape public opinion. They gleefully feed and manipulate the new International Gossip Fence. Most of the gossips aren't in the game for money, but they are useful tools for people who are.

    Now here comes the part that is going to cause people to throw bricks at me. The comments section of this blog is the reincarnation of the comments column of a newspaper...with one important difference. Newspapers could not afford to print every comment they received, comments were carefully curated. It was big deal to get your comment published. Some people were good at it, most weren't. Some harmlessly entertaining cranks were published...because they were simply entertaining. Other persistent cranks would get a snail mail letter from the editor saying: "Dear Mr. X, some scoundrel is using your good name to publish insane rants in your name. I thought you should know and consider legal action."

    CW doesn't have time for this curating, and I think neither his wife or cat will volunteer. We have trolls who visit on a regular basis. Some use the this column as an advertising link. This cheapens the value of CW com, by making the comments section very clunky to wade through on many days.

    I would propose setting a word limit for each reader, on a daily or weekly basis. In effect, commenting becomes more expensive. Trolling becomes less effective, as does parasitic advertising. Everybody else is forced to put more thought into less verbiage. The quality of the comments goes up, and CW spends less of his valuable time scrolling through the comments thicket. I suspect there is some way to automate this within the administrative software driving this blog.

  95. [95] 
    Michale wrote:

    He is just what we knew all along, an ignorant blow hard whose curiosity stops at the end of his nose

    And yet, as I have proven beyond ANY doubt Democrats loved him when he had a -D after his name..

    - and you elected this clown into the White House.

    I did and it's one of the BEST things I have done for my country.. And that includes a lot of blood and guts and killing and dying...

  96. [96] 
    Michale wrote:

    I would propose setting a word limit for each reader, on a daily or weekly basis. In effect, commenting becomes more expensive. Trolling becomes less effective, as does parasitic advertising. Everybody else is forced to put more thought into less verbiage. The quality of the comments goes up, and CW spends less of his valuable time scrolling through the comments thicket. I suspect there is some way to automate this within the administrative software driving this blog.

    And, of course, the comments you APPROVE of won't be bothered...

    It's just the comments you don't agree with would be censored..

    Yea... NO bigotry there whatsoever.. :^/

    No matter how you gussy it up, TS... Bigotry is still bigotry...

  97. [97] 
    Michale wrote:

    Weigantia's biggest strength is that it allows a free exchange of ideas...

    Some here only want a free-exchange of APPROVED ideas..

    That's what fascists do....

    I'm just sayin'.....

  98. [98] 
    Michale wrote:

    Of course, *I* am not calling anyone here a fascist... I mean name-calling ({{cough cough}} "trolls" {{cough}}) is simply not my style...

    I simply point out that creating a forum where only "APPROVED" ideas are allowed is something fascists would do...

    That's all I am sayin'...

  99. [99] 
    neilm wrote:

    I know my people,

    And yet, tens of millions of "your people" voted for Donald Trump..

    None of my people voted for 45. That is part of the definition of my people ;)

  100. [100] 
    neilm wrote:

    I listed dozens of achievements..

    Add a link so I can see this list.

  101. [101] 
    neilm wrote:

    And I never claimed I wanted Trump to let bad cops off the hook.. If you can't stay within the realm of FACTS, this conversation is useless...

    Like approval numbers for the guy who is meant to be making us all feel good about America?

    Face facts, the economy is still going great and the long waited recovery in wages that started two years ago is continuing, and yet this clown is still historically unpopular - and not just a bit - the closest parallel from the past was +11 at this point and 45 is at -17. If we ever do have a downturn in the economy and people have reason to be upset the bottom could fall out for him.

    So you actually admit there are bad cops out there - this is a novelty.

  102. [102] 
    neilm wrote:

    Some here only want a free-exchange of APPROVED ideas..

    Most of all I just want reliable sources rather than your opinion Michale.

  103. [103] 
    Michale wrote:

    None of my people voted for 45. That is part of the definition of my people ;)

    And THAT is not self-serving eh! :D

    So you actually admit there are bad cops out there - this is a novelty.

    I have never claimed otherwise.. You claiming I have??

    THAT is the novelty...

  104. [104] 
    neilm wrote:

    Michale: let me know you got an email - and enjoy "The Last Jedi"!

  105. [105] 
    Michale wrote:

    Most of all I just want reliable sources rather than your opinion Michale.

    COm'on Neil.. Let's face reality...

    You simply want sources that confirm your own biases... Reliability is not a factor..

    If it were, you wouldn't continue to quote polls....

  106. [106] 
    neilm wrote:

    And yet, as I have proven beyond ANY doubt Democrats loved him when he had a -D after his name..

    No, you haven't. You've proved that he wasn't a total pariah and, as he stated himself, politicians would kiss his ass to get money from him, but that is not approval by the Democratic Party as an entity. In fact most people, be they Republicans, Democrats or Independents, thought he was an egotistical blowhard.

    He was the buffoon then, and he is the buffoon now. The word would have been invented for him if it didn't already exist.

  107. [107] 
    neilm wrote:

    If it were, you wouldn't continue to quote polls....

    You are the one judging him on making people feel good. I'm the one trying to use the best possible way to understand a measure for "feeling good" and using his popularity as a proxy for his impact on us feeling good.

    And not everybody is feeling good. CW basically slit his wrists in blog format in this very post and is thankful 2017 is almost over.

  108. [108] 
    Michale wrote:

    Neil,

    Thanx...

    and enjoy "The Last Jedi"!

    That's gonna be a kick ass movie...

    First up, though... THOR: RAGNORAK :D

  109. [109] 
    Michale wrote:

    And not everybody is feeling good.

    Not everyone felt good under Obama..

    That didn't bother you much...

  110. [110] 
    Michale wrote:

    Most of all I just want reliable sources rather than your opinion Michale.

    But would you want to CENSOR or ban "sources" you felt were "unreliable"???

    I don't think you would..

    Which was the point of that particular comment..

  111. [111] 
    neilm wrote:

    OK, you'd think with all the Goldman Sachs guys (Drain the Swamp) running the country now that we have Grampa asleep in front of the TV all day we'd have some smart financial moves.

    For example, Canada has just sold C$1.25B 45-year bonds at 2.3% - smart move - lock in the low rates while they are at historic lows.

    Not our clown show. They are shortening the effective bond life with their current strategy. It is like refinancing your house that you intend to live in for ever with a 1 year ARM instead of a 30 year fixed. Fine when interest rates are high, but asinine when they are ridiculously low.

    https://www.themacrotourist.com/posts/2017/11/17/clifford/

  112. [112] 
    Michale wrote:

    Ya know, Neil.. You can save yerself a lot of typing by just making the blanket statement:

    Everything that President Trump does over the next 7+ years is bad, wrong and will likely end the world as we know it..

    You have just encapsulated 7+ years of comments into one statement.. :D

  113. [113] 
    neilm wrote:

    You have just encapsulated 7+ years of comments into one statement.. :D

    It is far more cathartic to let it out in little bits of ire every day rather than explode once :)

  114. [114] 
    neilm wrote:

    And normally I'd call you on the 7+ years bit, but after 2004 I know that Republicans can't learn simple lessons, so I'm not ruling anything out.

  115. [115] 
    neilm wrote:

    Alright, in all seriousness Michale and CRS - can you explain why anybody earning less than $300K or worth less than $3M should like the proposed tax plan?

    Remember, you have to account for the $1.5T negative debt impact.

    As I'm going to retire in the next few years (i.e. stop relying on income from labor and rely on living off my capital) this is a great plan (unless the debt blows out Medicare and all of Social Security).

    My point is that this isn't a personal whine. But for just about everybody else I just can't see the win.

  116. [116] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    The Stig [94] & CW,

    One thing that might work just as well as a word limit for commenters would be if conversations were branched off with responses to comments all bundled together (similar to the way HuffPost used to handle their comments before they ruined it and sold their soul to Facebook!)

    That would keep side conversations that veer off topic and can fill up the comments section from taking the focus off of what was being discussed. I know that I miss responses all the time because I get impatient skimming over the comments. Seriously, HuffPost had created a forum for conversations to take place like no other internet site that I have ever seen, and they destroyed it to get in on Facebook’s cash train!

  117. [117] 
    neilm wrote:

    if conversations were branched

    I also suggested that. My diversions with Michale go all over the place and are basically pointless contradiction (he is my pointless-contradiction buddy, in case that is news for anybody).

    Zipping those up one level would give the blog a two levels instead of one - I'm not in favor of multiple levels - I agree with either Paula or Elizabeth that pointed out to me that the sequentiality of the conversation is important, however I think we can cope with two levels.

  118. [118] 
    TheStig wrote:

    116, 117 - branched comments

    I never liked them on HuffPo. I found them clunky and stopped reading the comments altogether....and finally gave up on Huffpo as it settled into its current content model of 25% news and 75% ad click bait.

  119. [119] 
    Michale wrote:

    It is far more cathartic to let it out in little bits of ire every day rather than explode once :)

    Heh yer preaching to the choir on THAT one.. :D

    Alright, in all seriousness Michale and CRS - can you explain why anybody earning less than $300K or worth less than $3M should like the proposed tax plan?

    Nope..

    I am just a knuckle dragging ground pounder... I don't know anything about the proposed tax plan, nor do I care to...

  120. [120] 
    Michale wrote:

    That would keep side conversations that veer off topic and can fill up the comments section from taking the focus off of what was being discussed. I know that I miss responses all the time because I get impatient skimming over the comments. Seriously, HuffPost had created a forum for conversations to take place like no other internet site that I have ever seen, and they destroyed it to get in on Facebook’s cash train!

    During my hiatus, I spent time over at Scott Adams' blog. He uses the DISQUS front end and it has a LOT of advantages, including edit feature and easy inline pic placement...

  121. [121] 
    Michale wrote:

    Congress has handed Trump a historic presidential victory
    Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley is giving President Trump yet another major victory on judicial nominations.
    None of this would have been possible without Harry Reid's decision to kill the filibuster.
    The result is Trump will get to fill the most federal judiciary vacancies in 40 years.

    https://www.cnbc.com/2017/11/24/trumps-biggest-win-yet-comes-thanks-to-congress-commentary.html

    No accomplishments??

    hhaaaarrrumph...

  122. [122] 
    Michale wrote:

    And lest we forget...

    Al Franken still hasn’t denied grabbing women

    Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) has waded into the murky waters of trying to apologize for inappropriately touching women — while asserting that he didn't intentionally do anything wrong. And yet Franken hasn't denied any of the accusations against him, leaving the door open to the possibility that he is a serial groper.
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2017/11/24/al-franken-still-hasnt-denied-grabbing-women/?utm_term=.33ebd9220c25

    Democrats still have a serial groper do deal with...

    But what he does is no big deal, because he has a -D after his name, right???

    :^/

    Feel free to indulge in the 'whataboutism' that ya'all always falsely accuse me of.. :D

  123. [123] 
    Michale wrote:

    My Brother Kevin’s Not Tired of Winning

    Full disclosure: I am not a Trump disciple. His manners offend me and the tweeting is overdone, but I do admire his resiliency against an unrelenting and unfair press. His tweeting is annoying, but it can be an effective defense. He has 43.2 million Twitter followers. The New York Times has 3.1 million subscribers.

    Trump’s daily activity: I do not follow every move he makes. I counsel my Democratic friends to do the same, but they cannot help themselves.

    Trump’s minor battles: The N.F.L. players were disrespecting the American flag and were not called out by their gutless commissioner in a timely fashion. LaVar Ball is a publicity whore who cannot grasp that his son (and meal ticket) would have gone to jail without the president’s intervention.

    Trump’s interaction with dictators: If President Obama had done it, he would have been given the Nobel Peace Prize. (That already happened?)

    Robert Mueller’s investigation: So far, no direct connection with Trump himself on the Russia collusion. But it did find collusion with Hillary and the D.N.C. on the dossier. Luckily, she has several donors on Mueller’s staff ready to offer legal advice.

    Trump pressuring the Department of Justice: If Jeff Sessions cannot find prosecutable evidence against James Comey, Loretta Lynch and Hillary, he should go back to the Senate.

    Nepotism: Ivanka and Jared? Surely you jest. In the grand scheme of things, I don’t think they have any effect on anything. If this were a movie, they wouldn’t even be in the credits.
    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/23/opinion/sunday/my-brother-kevins-not-tired-of-winning.html?rref=collection%2Fsectioncollection%2Fopinion

    Kevin Dowd is not tired of winning and neither am I.. :D

  124. [124] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    The Stig,

    I liked that you could pull up just your own conversations and responses and avoid having to skim down all of the comments on the article’s page altogether. Disqus does that to some degree as well. I agree that HuffPost has become clickbait central! Sad, I enjoyed it when Arianna was actually paying attention and running the show.

  125. [125] 
    Michale wrote:

    . Disqus does that to some degree as well.

    It does..

    http://blog.dilbert.com/2017/11/13/president-trumps-2017-report-card-first-draft/#comment-3631157482

    It also allows you to upvote and downvote the comments ala THE ORVILLE :D

  126. [126] 
    Michale wrote:

    Sad, I enjoyed it when Arianna was actually paying attention and running the show.

    Oh, she has been running the show the whole time.. Arianna is all about the money...

    That's why she switched from being a Republican to being a flaming liberal..

    Like David Brock, she realized that THAT is where the money is at...

    Liberals are easy to dupe and and it's child's play to separate them from their trust fund money.. :D

  127. [127] 
    Michale wrote:

    Here’s your leftover turkey: The case for Hillary Clinton 2020
    What better way to honor the holiday than with a spiteful argument for yet another Clinton candidacy?

    Are you sick of Republicans? Or just right-wingers in general? Do you want to send a message to Washington that you aren't going to buy into their racist, sexist, xenophobic, homophobic and classist nonsense for one second longer?

    Then do the very thing that Donald Trump unintentionally encouraged in a recent tweet: Encourage Hillary Clinton to run for president in 2020!
    https://www.salon.com/2017/11/24/heres-your-leftover-turkey-the-case-for-hillary-clinton-2020/

    Please, Please, PLEASE Democrats...

    Run Hillary in 2020....

    PLEASE....

    Because NOTHING would guarantee 4 more years of President Donald Trump more than 2020 Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton...

  128. [128] 
    neilm wrote:

    Trump’s interaction with dictators: If President Obama had done it, he would have been given the Nobel Peace Prize.

    Whoever wrote that is absolutely desperate. This is such an asinine statement that the writer needs urgent care up top.

  129. [129] 
    neilm wrote:

    Run Hillary in 2020....

    Hillary might run as the incumbent in 2020 after the results of the 2016 election are revisited if any hacking of voting machines is discovered.

  130. [130] 
    neilm wrote:

    Michale:

    Are you personally sure you want to allow upvotes and downvotes on CW? Particularly downvotes?

  131. [131] 
    neilm wrote:

    I'm getting more worried about the Tax bill after seeing 45 understanding of basic arithmetic.

    It seems that he thinks 11 is a larger number than 55:

    Trump has not had the most Time cover appearances. At the time of his Time interview he had 11, a long way behind Richard Nixon’s 55.

  132. [132] 
    neilm wrote:

    I am just a knuckle dragging ground pounder... I don't know anything about the proposed tax plan, nor do I care to...

    Interesting. The biggest legislative effort of the Presidency so far, and you aren't going to pay any attention to it. It could mean that you will pay higher taxes, it likely will impact the solvency of social security and medicare, and also vastly increase inequality.

    Are you only interested in who is in the White House - or rather who isn't?

  133. [133] 
    Michale wrote:

    Hillary might run as the incumbent in 2020 after the results of the 2016 election are revisited if any hacking of voting machines is discovered.

    Doubtful...

    Because if the hysterical NeverTrumpers tried to replace Trump with Hillary, there would be a shooting war..

    And the Trump supporters have all the guns...

    Are you personally sure you want to allow upvotes and downvotes on CW? Particularly downvotes?

    I wouldn't mind.. Because it would be proof positive of the bigotry that is in play here. :D

    Interesting. The biggest legislative effort of the Presidency so far, and you aren't going to pay any attention to it.

    That about sums it up.. :D

    It could mean that you will pay higher taxes, it likely will impact the solvency of social security and medicare, and also vastly increase inequality.

    Could, might, maybe..

    Well, I am glad you are so definitive about things.. :D

  134. [134] 
    Michale wrote:

    Whoever wrote that is absolutely desperate. This is such an asinine statement that the writer needs urgent care up top.

    Considering the FACT that Obama got a Nobel Peace Prize for simply existing, the claim is not only NOT outside the realm of possibility, it's a pretty sure bet...

  135. [135] 
    Michale wrote:

    Obama would have gotten a Nobel Peace Prize for farting...

  136. [136] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    neilm [129]

    It's a common myth among the technologically challenged that Clinton lost because "voting machines were hacked".

    Voting machines cannot BE 'hacked', they are not connected to the internet.

    They could conceivably be 'sabotaged', by somebody who has physical access, but they cannot be "hacked"!

  137. [137] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    neilm [129]

    It's a common myth among the technologically challenged that Clinton lost because "voting machines were hacked".

    Voting machines cannot BE 'hacked', they are not connected to the internet.

    They could conceivably be 'sabotaged', by somebody who has physical access, but they cannot be "hacked"!

  138. [138] 
    Michale wrote:

    CRS,

    EVERYONE knows that Hillary lost the election because of sexism..

    But it's interesting..

    Sexism didn't prevent Hillary from winning the vanity vote....

    So, I am confused...

    How could sexism affect the Electoral Vote in a negative way but not the Vanity Vote???

    Hmmmmmmmmmmmm

  139. [139] 
    Michale wrote:
  140. [140] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    That Obama Nobel Peace Prize thing is interesting. He assassinated people with regularity, throughout his term (admittedly people who well merited assassination), but still, what other Peace Prize winner could make that claim??

  141. [141] 
    Michale wrote:

    That Obama Nobel Peace Prize thing is interesting. He assassinated people with regularity, throughout his term (admittedly people who well merited assassination), but still, what other Peace Prize winner could make that claim??

    Yep.. Obama has launched more cruise missiles than ANY other Nobel Peace Prize winner in history...

    Anyone who did that with an -R after their name would be demonized and castigated throughout all eternity..

    The guy with the -D after his name who does it?? He gets worshiped...

    Partisan "logic".... :^/

  142. [142] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    There are leaks and then there are selective leaks to suit a good purpose. Mueller's leaks are the latter.

  143. [143] 
    Michale wrote:

    Unhinged coverage of Trump is hurting the media

    Turn down the volume. Unclench your fist. Turn the dial back down from 11. Trump isn’t going anywhere for a while. Deal with it.

    A year ago this week, I marveled at the pot-boiling-over frenzy of Donald Trump Derangement Syndrome in the media. Well, today, the media’s kitchen is a shambles. Spaghetti sauce is splattered all over the walls, and the Fourth Estate is pouring more Prego marinara into the pot while keeping the heat turned up to the level marked “thermonuclear.”

    Not only is everything (still) hyper-politicized, but the lines between news media, lifestyle media and flat-out activism have faded into irrelevance. On Wednesday, the lead story in Teen Vogue, next to stories about how “I Will Never Use Regular Soap Again After THIS $6 Foam Body Wash” and “Everyone Basically Wore Lingerie to the VS Fashion Show After Party,” was this screaming headline: “The United States Voted ‘No’ on an Anti-Nazi UN Resolution.” It ran over a terrifying picture of crowds carrying banners, some featuring swastikas, with smoke in the background suggesting a terror attack. Only when you click through do you discover that there is no news here whatsoever: The US votes against this meaningless, nonbinding UN gambit every year because the US has this thing called the First Amendment. President Obama’s appointees also opposed the resolution.
    https://nypost.com/2017/11/25/now-glossy-fashion-mags-have-joined-the-trump-resistance/

    And what's so hilarious is that ya'all believe the media has any credibility, even though the media is envious of Trump's approval numbers...

    But the media ONLY has credibility for you if they spew exactly what you want to hear...

    It's a self-fulfilling delusion...

  144. [144] 
    Michale wrote:

    There are leaks and then there are selective leaks to suit a good purpose. Mueller's leaks are the latter.

    Exactly...

    Leaks are good if they serve a political agenda..

    But regardless of the concession, that wasn't my point..

    My point was is that many of ya'all are on record as stating that Mueller's investigation has been "leak free" and that is total and complete felgercarb...

    It's the delusion of a mind totally engulfed in the throes of PTDS....

  145. [145] 
    TheStig wrote:

    Stucki 137-138

    A semantic distinction of no practical importance. The critical point Neilm raises is that the machine is modified by an outside agent, without permission, to alter the output of the machine in a way that helps the agent. Internet is one way to accomplish that but other methods can be used on a machine that is isolated from the internet.

    How many sock puppets do you own?....I am compelled to ask that question. You seem familiar.

  146. [146] 
    Michale wrote:

    A semantic distinction of no practical importance. The critical point Neilm raises is that the machine is modified by an outside agent, without permission, to alter the output of the machine in a way that helps the agent. Internet is one way to accomplish that but other methods can be used on a machine that is isolated from the internet.

    And, are there any FACTS to support your claim that the machines were hacked??

    Other than the fact you don't like the result, I mean??

    How many sock puppets do you own?....I am compelled to ask that question. You seem familiar.

    Yes, your Party slavery compels you to attack people you don't agree with... :^/

  147. [147] 
    TheStig wrote:

    Listen To What You Hear 124 & The Grand Poobah (CW)

    After mulling over this problem, here is a format I would like:

    On entering any given column, all authors are listed in hypertext, in their order of posting, but without any accompanying text. This gives the reader a good "lay of the land" Clicking on any given author blocks said author for the duration of this visit. Clicking a "Go Button" brings up all unblocked authors - blocked authors only get their name in chronological order, their text is not printed. All the above is reset on each visit to a
    particular column, so nothing is cast in stone. Some days a reader is in a hurry, some days not.

    One could refine this a bit with some additional logic buttons, but the basic idea is that individual readers can prune authors who don't interest them. No site censorship is involved, only reader preferences.

    On any given day, my scrolling effort could be reduced by 50%! What is not to like? Seriously, anybody see any flaws I haven't considered?

  148. [148] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Stig

    Your whole argument breaks down on the "outside agent" thing. I'm familiar with how elections are run wherever I've ever lived, and election officials would normally NEVER allow "outside agents" access to voting machines.

    Perhaps somewhere, somehow somebody might break in or perhaps bribe a dishonest official to grant access, but that is never going to amount to anything worth being concerned over.

    Sorry no sock puppets. Not even certain of what a sock puppet is.

  149. [149] 
    chaszzzbrown wrote:

    [137] CRS
    Voting machines cannot BE 'hacked', they are not connected to the internet.

    They could conceivably be 'sabotaged', by somebody who has physical access, but they cannot be "hacked"!

    https://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/07/29/us_voting_machines_hacking/

    It's one thing to physically nobble a box in front of you, which isn't hard for election officials to spot and stop. It's another to do it over the air from a distance. Apparently, some of the boxes included poorly secured Wi-Fi connectivity. A WinVote system used in previous county elections was, it appears, hacked via Wi-Fi and the MS03-026 vulnerability in WinXP, allowing infosec academic Carsten Schurmann to access the machine from his laptop using RDP. Another system could be potentially cracked remotely via OpenSSL bug CVE-2011-4109, it is claimed.

    But this sort of hacking is still too inefficient to worry about much, because voting machines vary so much at the county level, making a coordinated attack impractical.

    The greater issue is the infrastructure behind all the voting machines, e.g. hacking the databases of voter registration information: try googling "voter registration hacking" for examples, most recently Georgia special elections.

  150. [150] 
    Michale wrote:

    but the basic idea is that individual readers can prune authors who don't interest them. No site censorship is involved

    Bullshit...

    "pruning" authors is the very definition of censorship...

    On any given day, my scrolling effort could be reduced by 50%! What is not to like? Seriously, anybody see any flaws I haven't considered?

    None whatsoever.. You have created a perfect liberal Safe Space.. An echo chamber...

    What's not to love??

    Except if you are a rational person with more than two brain cells to rub together, that is.. :^/

  151. [151] 
    chaszzzbrown wrote:

    [140] CRS
    That Obama Nobel Peace Prize thing is interesting. He assassinated people with regularity, throughout his term (admittedly people who well merited assassination), but still, what other Peace Prize winner could make that claim??

    Henry Kissinger comes to mind.

  152. [152] 
    TheStig wrote:

    Stucki - 148

    "Perhaps somewhere, somehow somebody might break in or perhaps bribe a dishonest official to grant access, but that is never going to amount to anything worth being concerned over."

    Like the Enigma machine user: "Ah, what possibly go wrong?"

    I have personally seen an entire school system brought down with a memory stick.

    I'm not worried about the dumb agents - it's the clever one that worries me.

  153. [153] 
    Michale wrote:

    CB,

    Henry Kissinger comes to mind.

    Kissinger gave suggestions..

    Obama issued orders...

    Big difference..

  154. [154] 
    Michale wrote:

    I have personally seen an entire school system brought down with a memory stick.

    WOW!!!!

    A whole school system!!!

    "STOP THE PRESSES!!! DEPLOY THE MILITARY!!!"

    That was sarcasm, in case yer Safe Space has dulled your mental faculties..

  155. [155] 
    TheStig wrote:

    chaszzzbrown - 151

    I hadn't thought of Henry Kissinger in years....

    Vee Villy Vinky runs thru the town
    Tells Tricky Dickster "Burn their hootch down."

  156. [156] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Julia Louis-Dreyfus tweeted today: “just called to say I was PROBABLY going to be named comedienne of the year but I would have to agree to an interview and a major photo shoot. I said probably is no good and took a pass.”

  157. [157] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    BTW, some celebs are calling for Mueller to be named "Person of the Year", but my favorite pick, if it isn't too early for such a thing, is WOMEN.

    From the Women's March way back in January, and those wonderful "pussy" hats, to the influence of the mothers of disabled kids during the Health Care debate (and a lot of organizing, too), to the historic wins of many women in the Virginia elections, to the #MeToo movement of today, you can't say that the Women of this country haven't had a big year.

    Save Mueller for NEXT year! heh.

  158. [158] 
    Michale wrote:

    PROBABLY going to be named comedienne of the year but I would have to agree to an interview and a major photo shoot. I said probably is no good and took a pass.”

    Yea.. The photo shoot was with Al Franken..

    Of course she took a pass...

  159. [159] 
    Michale wrote:

    It's not the first time that President Trump's motorcade has experienced a close call.

    During a Trump stop in Missouri to promote tax reform in August, a driver whose vehicle was experiencing brake failure crashed through a wooded area and into the closed-off road the motorcade was traveling on. According to a local news report, no collision occurred and police did not charge the driver since there was no evidence of ill intent.

    Trump himself delayed his motorcade after a stop in Indiana in September, also to promote tax reform, after a police officer riding a motorcycle in the president's motorcade was injured. Robert Turner, a police officer from Indianapolis, later spoke with the president via cell phone before Trump returned to Washington.
    https://www.politico.com/story/2017/11/25/trump-motorcade-van-florida-259706

    Gods, what a great guy President Trump is!!!

    Odumbo would have stuck his head out the window and LAUGHED at the injured cop!!!

    "HA!!!!! YOU ACTED STUPIDLY!!!!"
    -Barack Obama

  160. [160] 
    Michale wrote:

    From the Women's March way back in January, and those wonderful "pussy" hats, to the influence of the mothers of disabled kids during the Health Care debate (and a lot of organizing, too), to the historic wins of many women in the Virginia elections, to the #MeToo movement of today, you can't say that the Women of this country haven't had a big year.

    Yea, Al Franken agrees.. Women were great this year!! :D

  161. [161] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Yea, Al Franken agrees.. Women were great this year!! :D

    That's all you've got? The political equivalent of "So's your mama", eh?

    I really worry that Trump has not only lowered the bar for bad behavior, but also for wit among his followers. Will and Buckley used to get some zingers out - even Reagan had his moments - but this crowd can only point hysterically at their latest faux scandal and bleat on and on about it!

    Again: what Franken is alleged to have done is wrong, but not awful; what Moore is alleged to have done is both excruciatingly wrong and awful.

  162. [162] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Chris,

    Hoping you'll disregard [147] and similar blog format comments ...

    Seriously.

    Some things must stay the same, damn it!

  163. [163] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    ... of course, a simple edit function would be nice. :)

  164. [164] 
    TheStig wrote:

    I wonder how the remake of 12 Angry Men with Chris Weigant is going?

  165. [165] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Would you like me to tell you how it ends?

  166. [166] 
    neilm wrote:

    It's a common myth among the technologically challenged that Clinton lost because "voting machines were hacked".

    I was just winding up Michale by proposing that Hillary would run as an incumbent - please don't read too much into my throw away line.

    It is not inconceivable that some form of tampering happened, but I've seen no evidence, so this is just a "Fox News" story at the moment - inflammatory speculation with no evidence.

    I've been technically challenged since I wrote my first real-time operating system in 6800 machine code, and I haven't recovered in the intervening decades ;)

  167. [167] 
    neilm wrote:

    That Obama Nobel Peace Prize thing is interesting. He assassinated people with regularity, throughout his term (admittedly people who well merited assassination), but still, what other Peace Prize winner could make that claim??

    Yup, the Nobel committee were so pleased that Bush 2 was out of the White House they gave Obama a Peace Prize. I think they jumped the gun.

    It will be interesting to see what prizes the World showers on whoever replaces 45.

  168. [168] 
    neilm wrote:

    "HA!!!!! YOU ACTED STUPIDLY!!!!"
    -Barack Obama

    Wow, that was puerile Michale.

  169. [169] 
    neilm wrote:

    The Nobel Committee just called me to tell me I was probably getting the Peace Prize, but I said probably is no good and took a pass. Thanks anyway!

  170. [170] 
    neilm wrote:

    Whoever wrote that is absolutely desperate. This is such an asinine statement that the writer needs urgent care up top.

    Considering the FACT that Obama got a Nobel Peace Prize for simply existing, the claim is not only NOT outside the realm of possibility, it's a pretty sure bet...

    Way to keep up with the point Michale ... welcome to today!

  171. [171] 
    neilm wrote:

    Franken is willing to have an open investigation into the claims and let the accusers have their chance to speak - why won't 45 and Moore do the same thing?

    Franken may be guilty of either poor or criminal behavior, but his willingness to have an ethics review gives him the benefit of the doubt.

    45 and Moore are just attacking the alleged victims so look far more scared of open hearings - making them look guilty.

    All 45 needs to do is allow a bipartisan investigation into his behavior - what is he scared of?

  172. [172] 
    neilm wrote:

    CB [149]

    Thanks for that link - it turns out that the voting machines are far more vulnerable than I thought.

    And regarding the suggestion in [147] (selective hiding of certain authors): CB already created a program to do that and it works - I can't remember the link however.

  173. [173] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Why would anyone wish to participate in this blog and want to block an author?

    It doesn't make a lot of sense.

    Perhaps a little growing up is in order ...

  174. [174] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    grown ups? here? let's not be silly.

  175. [175] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Heh.

  176. [176] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I've got nothing if not good timing ...

  177. [177] 
    Michale wrote:

    Again: what Franken is alleged to have done is wrong, but not awful; what Moore is alleged to have done is both excruciatingly wrong and awful.

    Like I said.. Whataboutism....

    The difference being that A> Moore vehemently denies the accusations.. Franken doesn't...

    Further, there are FACTS that prove the Franken accusations.. There are no facts that support the Moore accusations. In fact, there are FACTS that indicate the Moore accusations are nothing but politically motivated hit jobs..

    But notice how you are so nuanced and equivocating with the Democrat's accusations, but not at all with the Republican accusations..

    Which would prove that you don't really care about the accusations.. You just want to beat up on a Republican...

  178. [178] 
    Michale wrote:

    Neil,

    It is not inconceivable that some form of tampering happened, but I've seen no evidence, so this is just a "Fox News" story at the moment - inflammatory speculation with no evidence.

    It's not inconceivable???

    So, THAT's the standard for facts around here???

    "Not Inconceivable"???

    WOW... The PTDS is strong here...

    Wow, that was puerile Michale.

    But funny.. Oh so funny.. :D

    Franken is willing to have an open investigation into the claims and let the accusers have their chance to speak - why won't 45 and Moore do the same thing?

    That was after the FIRST accusation..

    We have 4 accusations now and Franken has gone silent..

    But, once again.. Whataboutism...

    All 45 needs to do is allow a bipartisan investigation into his behavior - what is he scared of?

    The same thing Hitlerry, Odumbo and the Dumbocrats were scared of when they refused to hold investigations in the Odumbo years...

  179. [179] 
    Michale wrote:

    Why would anyone wish to participate in this blog and want to block an author?

    It doesn't make a lot of sense.

    Perhaps a little growing up is in order ...

    Exactly...

    Kudos for seeing the elephant in the room and actually commenting on it..

    But the explanation is simple..

    Some people are snowflakes and can't handle reality and differing ideas so they have to create a "Safe Space" where they can shut out things they can't handle...

    It's a sad and pathetic way to go thru life and such people are to be pitied..

  180. [180] 
    Michale wrote:

    And regarding the suggestion in [147] (selective hiding of certain authors): CB already created a program to do that and it works - I can't remember the link however.

    And you wonder why I don't want to surround myself with snowflakes?? :^/

  181. [181] 
    Michale wrote:

    Trouble for Angela Merkel — and the global elite
    https://nypost.com/2017/11/24/trouble-for-angela-merkel-and-the-global-elite/

    So much for the "real" leader of the Free World, eh?? :D

  182. [182] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    [181] Trouble for Angela Merkel — and the global elite

    All of the populist rhetoric in the world can't disguise the fact that Trump, Putin, and the rest of the international 'populist' right only want a different set of elites in charge, under rules more favorable to them. Rules like: everybody look the other way while they adorn their homes with gold toilet seats.

    Merkel will form another coalition government with the SDP and continue, much to the dismay of both Putin and Trump. The center holds!

  183. [183] 
    Michale wrote:

    Democrats Have Zero Credibility To Attack Trump After Hiding Bill Clinton’s Sexcapades
    Just one year ago, when denouncing serial predator and likely rapist Bill Clinton might have mattered, the Left instead embraced him and cheered on his chief enabler.

    http://thefederalist.com/2017/11/21/democrats-zero-credibility-attack-trump-hiding-bill-clintons-sexcapades/

    This is why ya'all have absolutely NO MORAL FOUNDATION to condemn Moore, Trump or anyone else on the Right you think committed sexual assault...

    You find rape, sexual assault and sexual harassment perfectly acceptable when it's committed by a Democrat...

    Hence, ya'all's total and complete lack of credibility..

  184. [184] 
    Michale wrote:

    You find rape, sexual assault and sexual harassment perfectly acceptable when it's committed by a Democrat...

    Notable exceptions noted.....

  185. [185] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    [183] Okay, suppose you were right and Democrats are half a nation of hypocrites who have aided and abetted Clinton to escape his past since 1997.

    That, in your view would let one sexual predator off the hook, but why in the world would you want to compound the problem by letting TWO predators off the hook by excusing Moore?

    If you believe the allegations against Clinton were enough in your mind to impeach him, why aren't the allegations against Moore enough to simply not elect him?

    Unless you believe that nine women who didn't know each other and had lived in Alabama their whole lives, most, if not all of whom claim to have voted for Trump, cooked up this story that happened to have been corroborated by 30 other people that would have had to be in on it all, some since the nineteen-seventies. Oh, and by the way, the memories of all the people that were aware of Moore's problems with that Mall back then who have come forward are also being manipulated by the Democratic Party.

    That's a lot to swallow just to press an outdated charge against a former President.

  186. [186] 
    Michale wrote:

    That, in your view would let one sexual predator off the hook, but why in the world would you want to compound the problem by letting TWO predators off the hook by excusing Moore?

    I am not excusing Moore.. I simply point out that A> they are ONLY accusations with absolutely NO facts that prove anything... and B> these accusations come at a very "convenient" moment for the Democrat Party..

    The timing alone strongly indicates that these accusations are politically motivated and can be written off as such..

    If you believe the allegations against Clinton were enough in your mind to impeach him, why aren't the allegations against Moore enough to simply not elect him?

    The allegations against Clinton for impeachment was perjury and obstruction of justice...

    You are comparing apples and alligators..

    That's a lot to swallow just to press an outdated charge against a former President.

    If I were assessing the charges against Moore vs the charges against Clinton, you would have an argument..

    But I am not, so you don't..

    I am assessing the CREDIBILITY and the MORAL STANDING of ya'all..

    And it has been found wanting...

  187. [187] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    If I were assessing the charges against Moore vs the charges against Clinton, you would have an argument..

    That was exactly what you were doing. But you want it both ways - you want the assessment of Clinton without the simultaneous assessment of Moore.

    So it's just Moore bullshit.

  188. [188] 
    Michale wrote:

    That was exactly what you were doing.

    No, I wasn't... I was pointing to an article that showed how Democrats have no credibility..

  189. [189] 
    Michale wrote:

    And, if Moore does win the election, which seems likely, then you people will only have Democrats to blame...

    Democrats set the "standard" for politics in sex accusations...

  190. [190] 
    Michale wrote:

    And Democrats will lose 2 seats in Congress... Conyers and Franken..

    Because we all know that if had been 2 Republicans with these accusations, ya'all would be DEMANDING they step down..

    So, of course, ya'all demand that these 2 Democrats step down...

    Right??? :D

  191. [191] 
    Michale wrote:

    I am thankful that Neil M. Gorsuch is on the Supreme Court and that President Trump has secured a conservative majority that will protect human life, religious liberty, the Second Amendment and limited government. I am also thankful the president is moving at record pace to fill the federal appeals courts with young conservative judges. While the Supreme Court only hears about 80 cases a year, the federal appeals courts get final say on about 60,000 — and because Democrats ended the filibuster, they can’t stop Trump from filling those courts with conservative legal rock stars. The Senate has already confirmed eight of Trump’s nine appellate nominees — the most this early in a presidency since Richard Nixon – and Trump will appoint plenty more before his first term expires. As former Clinton adviser Ronald A. Klain complained in The Post, “the next two generations of Americans will live under laws interpreted by hundreds of [Trump-appointed] judges.”
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/this-thanksgiving-im-grateful-hillary-clinton-is-not-president/2017/11/22/68bafc9a-cee7-11e7-9d3a-bcbe2af58c3a_story.html?utm_term=.f2f3c72f38e5

    And NeverTrumpers claim that Trump hasn't accomplished ANYTHING... :^/

    They just CAN'T see past their PTDS and give credit where credit is due...

  192. [192] 
    neilm wrote:

    And NeverTrumpers claim that Trump hasn't accomplished ANYTHING... :^/

    Yeah, if you actually read what I said, I stated that the Republican machine had a list of right wing judges ready to unleash when they stopped blocking appointments. Why you think 45 has anything to do with this beyond signing his name shows your level of desperation to give this guy credit for anything.

    From [53] above: Yup - I thought he might actually be competent enough to do something. He has done nothing apart from sign in new judges that were picked for him.

    So, back to my original question, besides rubber stamping a lot of judges, what has this clown actually achieved?

    I mean, don't get me wrong, if he manages to screw up Ryan and McConnell's plans for a tax cut for billionaires like he did the Obamacare repeal I'll give him credit for being an unintentionally useless clown and laugh my ass off again at him and his loser supporters. However this time I think the kids will keep grampa quiet in the background as it is important for them to get a few billion more for themselves (at your expense I might add).

  193. [193] 
    neilm wrote:

    I am thankful that Neil M. Gorsuch is on the Supreme Court and that President Trump has secured a conservative majority that will protect human life, religious liberty, the Second Amendment and limited government.

    Given that it was McConnell that blocked Obama's appointment then picked Gorsuch with the help of right wing lawyers, this is another sad attempt by losers to credit a clown.

    What is missing from the "touchy feely" list of "protections" is the real reason the rich donors want a right wing puppet on the SCOTUS - gutting regulations that keep workers and regular people safe and rubber stamping a business environment that will protect incumbent business models.

    Time to grow up and realize that your emotions are fed (primarily the "I hate the pointy heads" one) at the expense of your health and financial security.

  194. [194] 
    Michale wrote:

    l I'll give him credit for being an unintentionally useless clown

    That TOTALLY devastated your chosen candidate... :D

    Which doesn't say too much for your candidate... or you... :D

  195. [195] 
    neilm wrote:

    If you think the Republican ruling class care are about anything apart from money you are delusional.

    I'm not saying the Democrats are much better, even though I'm not as nihilistic as Don, but at the moment they can't do much more harm than unfettered rule by billionaires via their puppets.

  196. [196] 
    neilm wrote:

    Which doesn't say too much for your candidate... or you... :D

    That is all you've got. One accomplishment, losing the popular vote and winning on a technicality.

    Can't say I'm impressed.

  197. [197] 
    neilm wrote:

    Michale: why do you think that billionaires who buy your politicians do it for your benefit?

    I mean, if 45 wasn't an obvious con man I could see the appeal of a Batman-like candidate (i.e. a billionaire who only wants to do good). but given that 45 is so obviously not a populist looking out for the little guy, is the bile you harbor so bitter that you will throw away your and your family's health and financial security just to hate the pointy heads?

  198. [198] 
    neilm wrote:

    I mean you thought you were voting for Batman, but instead it turned out to be The Joker.

    Sad.

  199. [199] 
    neilm wrote:

    Interesting take on the split between returns on capital vs. labor:

    http://www.eoionline.org/blog/x-marks-the-spot-where-inequality-took-root-dig-here/

    Now remember, I'm a capitalist and am castigated for this on this very blog at times, but I'm also a realist who understands that raw capitalism inevitably moves from a win-win to a zero sum game as power and wealth get concentrated and rents get created.

  200. [200] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Interesting note that the title of the article is "Thankfully, 2017 is Almost Over" while 2016 remains alive and well.

  201. [201] 
    Michale wrote:

    That is all you've got. One accomplishment, losing the popular vote and winning on a technicality.

    Only a hysterical partisan who lost would call the Electoral College, the mechanism that has decided our elections for over a hundred years, a "technicality". :D

  202. [202] 
    Michale wrote:

    I mean you thought you were voting for Batman, but instead it turned out to be The Joker.

    Nope.. I thought I was voting for the Non-Establishment candidate that would cause Left Wing ideological zealots to hysterically lose their frakin' minds... :D

    "Mission Accomplished"
    -Rod, STARGATE ATLANTIS

    :D

  203. [203] 
    Michale wrote:

    “John Conyers is an icon in our country. He has done a great deal to protect women - Violence Against Women Act, which the left - right-wing - is now quoting me as praising him for his work on that, and he did great work on that,”
    -Nancy Pelosi

    So, that means Conyers should be given a pass and be able to sexually assault and sexually harass anyone he wants to...

    Democrat "logic"....

  204. [204] 
    neilm wrote:

    Left Wing ideological zealots to hysterically lose their frakin' minds

    This is why you could never list any goals you had for 45 except pardoning bad cops, and you can't list any accomplishments - you don't care about who is in power so long as the people you hate don't get what they want.

    News flash: the rich "Left Wing ideological zealots" are going to be fine with the tax bill - plus the pendulum will swing and you will end up with the same hatred, only poorer, and the people you hate will be richer - all because of your emotional response.

    Don't succumb to the hate.

  205. [205] 
    Michale wrote:

    This is why you could never list any goals you had for 45 except pardoning bad cops,

    No matter how many times you spew that same lie, it doesn't make it anything but a lie...

    Don't succumb to the hate.

    Says the guy who is representative of a group that has done NOTHING but wallow in hysterical hate for the last year+ :D

  206. [206] 
    neilm wrote:

    No matter how many times you spew that same lie, it doesn't make it anything but a lie...

    The only goal you had for 45 was for him to be nice to cops - since you continually offer a blank check for all cops, and 45 has already pardoned Arapaio who is the epitome of bad cops, you can't walk away from this.

  207. [207] 
    Michale wrote:

    and 45 has already pardoned Arapaio who is the epitome of bad cops,

    That's your opinion, borne of ignorance and unsupported by facts...

  208. [208] 
    Michale wrote:
  209. [209] 
    neilm wrote:

    and 45 has already pardoned Arapaio who is the epitome of bad cops,

    That's your opinion, borne of ignorance and unsupported by facts...

    You mean facts like:

    On July 31, 2017, Arpaio was found guilty of criminal contempt of court.

  210. [210] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    neilm

    Not true, Economics can indeed "explain what happened in the mid '70's" (to reallocate the traditional rewards of productivity increases).

    Three things happened: 1) High tech, 2)Robotics, and 3), Globalization. High Tech (chiefly, EDP) and Robotics replaced millions of unskilled workers, and Globalization eliminated the premium the market placed on unskilled labor as a result of it being in short supply for the period between the end of WWII and the mid '70's, (accounting for the demise of labor unions as a side effect).

    Tom Piketty observed the effect of those three factors and erroneously concluded that the increased return on the rewards of capital, at the expense of unskilled labor, represented some sort of unfair manipulation of the system by greedy capitalists. Not true. Capital had ALWAYS from the beginning, been more productive than labor, and beginning in the mid '70's the role of capital grew enormously because the percentage of capital invested grew enormously in proportion to that of the other two factors, land and labor.

    Productivity did NOT rise exponentially beginning in the mid '70's because unskilled laborers were working harder. It rose because of high tech and robotics, so the rewards went to the engineers, the programmers and the capitalists, the very folks who produced it.

  211. [211] 
    neilm wrote:

    Economics can indeed "explain what happened in the mid '70's" (to reallocate the traditional rewards of productivity increases).

    Frankly I agree that the change in wealth distribution was not just "the rich getting greedy". And I also agree that your three factors had a significant effect. Also missing is another factor - the loss of American manufacturing's "leading edge" - the 1970s were when German and Japanese manufacturers went past America's in quality and technology.

    Robots did not make a significant impact on manufacturing until the 1980s - G.M.'s robotic partnership with Fanuc was a dismal failure, high tech was a revolution of the 1990's and globalization really got going in the early 1980s.

    I also think it interesting that the "America went to the dogs" argument is used by both sides of the political aisle - my conservative friends point to the 1960s, and most of my left wing friends point to Reagan and his attacks on unions - so far the 1970s have been the decade of tricky dickie and Vietnam - not the sea change decade in American culture.

  212. [212] 
    Michale wrote:

    On July 31, 2017, Arpaio was found guilty of criminal contempt of court.

    That was nothing but a politically motivated witch hunt..

    Yer going to have to do a LOT better than that..

  213. [213] 
    Michale wrote:

    On July 31, 2017, Arpaio was found guilty of criminal contempt of court.

    OK.... OK..... If Arpaio is a "bad cop" because of the contempt of court...

    Obama Administration Found in Contempt of Court, Media Silent
    https://www.mrc.org/biasalerts/obama-administration-found-contempt-court-media-silent

    The you are saying that the Odumbo administration is a "bad administration" for the same reason...

    Let your back-pedaling commence... :D

  214. [214] 
    Michale wrote:

    With Germany in crisis, Europe-watchers contemplate an E.U. after Merkel
    by SAPHORA SMITH
    SHARE
    Share
    Tweet
    Email
    Print
    LONDON — Germany has for decades been Europe's pillar of stability, supporting the European Union through economic crises, pressures from immigration and the threat of a resurgent far-right.

    But with Germany's politics now in disarray — and the future of its chancellor Angela Merkel hanging in the balance — Europe risks losing its de facto leader, resulting in a power vacuum across the continent.
    https://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/brexit-referendum/germany-crisis-europe-watchers-contemplate-e-u-after-merkel-n823631

    SO much for the new Leader Of The Free World.. :D

  215. [215] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    [214] As I said in [182] when you brought up Merkel before, she'll will be fine once she (re)constitutes a government coalition with the SPD.

    The populist right has to sooner or later admit that its fortunes have turned, and that the nationalist surge represented by Brexit and Trump was halted once it became clear that it was being orchestrated from the Kremlin, leading to subsequent losses by nationalists in France, Holland, and lately, Germany.

    The real story is how Putin's nationalist allies in Poland and Hungary are now also facing increasingly skeptical electorates in their respective countries, and how Putin's 'politically divide and conquer' strategy is slowly falling apart in Europe, Britain and the US, thanks to his overplaying his hand with Trump. Scared the bejesus out of everyone for a hot minute, though.

  216. [216] 
    Michale wrote:

    [214] As I said in [182] when you brought up Merkel before, she'll will be fine once she (re)constitutes a government coalition with the SPD.

    And as I pointed out, Merkel CAN'T reconstitute a majority government..

    And she can't rule effectively with a minority government..

    And no amount of wishful thinking on your part will change that...

  217. [217] 
    Michale wrote:

    Rep. John Conyers steps down from committee leadership position amid harassment accusations
    https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/politics-news/nancy-pelosi-john-conyers-deserves-due-process-n823991

    And so it begins...

  218. [218] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    [217] You do realize that he'll be replaced on the committee with another Democrat don't you? One that's younger and better able to rebuff GOP obstruction. I don't see why you should be happy about this.

  219. [219] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    And as I pointed out, Merkel CAN'T reconstitute a majority government..

    Whatever you want to call it, pressure is building for both the CDU and SPD to join in coalition. It'll be about as pretty as Platypus sex, but it'll get done. My every confidence is in the German national impulse toward order.

  220. [220] 
    Michale wrote:

    Whatever you want to call it, pressure is building for both the CDU and SPD to join in coalition.

    And so far, they have blatantly stated that Merkel's position on open immigration is a deal breaker...

    It'll be about as pretty as Platypus sex, but it'll get done.

    Yea.. And Hillary was going to win the election.

    How many times do ya have to be burned before you concede that WISHFUL THINKING doesn't make it so???

  221. [221] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    And so far, they have blatantly stated that Merkel's position on open immigration is a deal breaker...

    Merkel only wants an immigration cap, which runs right down the middle. It's negotiable.

    How many times do ya have to be burned before you concede that WISHFUL THINKING doesn't make it so?

    No more so than your insistence that the most savvy and experienced politician in Europe is about to spit up a fur ball.

  222. [222] 
    Michale wrote:

    Merkel only wants an immigration cap, which runs right down the middle. It's negotiable.

    Not according to the groups that Merkel wants to negotiate with...

    No more so than your insistence that the most savvy and experienced politician in Europe is about to spit up a fur ball.

    The fact that Merkel groups had their asses handed to them in the last election PROVES my "insistence" that the most experienced politician in Europe spit up a furball..

    Once again, you deny reality because you can't handle reality..

  223. [223] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    The fact that Merkel groups had their asses handed to them in the last election

    'Merkel groups', as you put it, didn't do as well as many would have liked, but she beat back an insurgency from her right, and that cost her and her coalition partners some votes and support on the left. That was a loss for Putin and the euro alt-right, and a win for the political center.

    The question in their upcoming meeting on Thursday is, will the demands of young leftists be enough to make the SPD back out of a grand coalition in which it will share 50% power?

    Oh, I doubt it.

    you deny reality because you can't handle reality

    You deny reality because it never appears on Fox News.

  224. [224] 
    Michale wrote:

    'Merkel groups', as you put it, didn't do as well as many would have liked, but she beat back an insurgency from her right, and that cost her and her coalition partners some votes and support on the left. That was a loss for Putin and the euro alt-right, and a win for the political center.

    Whatever you have to tell yourself to sleep at night. :D

    The fact is, Merkel is faced with 2 very unpalatable choices...

    She can plunge ahead with a minority government which will make it very difficult to govern Germany and IMPOSSIBLE to fulfill her EU duties...

    Or she can call for new elections which offers the very real likely hood that she will be replaced..

    No matter how you spin it, it's very bad for Merkel..

    Oh, I doubt it.

    Yea.. And you "doubted" that Trump would be President.. You "doubted" that Brexit would pass..

    You really need to learn that wishful thinking does NOT reality make...

    You deny reality because it never appears on Fox News.

    Says the guy who quotes FoxNews when it says what he wants to here..

    I can assure you of one thing that is completely and utterly factual...

    YOU watch more Fox News than I do...

    That's a fact...

  225. [225] 
    Michale wrote:

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DPk_3Q0X0AM2lN8.jpg

    And the NFL slide into oblivion continues...

  226. [226] 
    Michale wrote:

    Nate Silver?Verified account
    @NateSilver538
    Follow Follow @NateSilver538
    More Nate Silver Retweeted NBC News PR
    Democrats have lost the thread on sexual harassment.

    You can debate Franken as being a marginal case, I guess.

    But the Conyers claims represent a serious abuse of power—one that required a legal settlement—and Pelosi doesn't see them as a firing offense.

  227. [227] 
    Michale wrote:

    Christopher Ingraham
    ?
    @_cingraham
    Pelosi is helping ensure that credible allegations of sexual misconduct turn into a purely partisan issue.
    9:48 AM - Nov 26, 2017 · Minnesota, USA

    Josh Barro
    ?
    @jbarro
    The most absurd part of Pelosi’s statement is “I believe he understands what is at stake here and he will do the right thing.” It’s not up to Conyers to decide what’s right. Also, he’s widely reputed to be losing his mental faculties.
    10:33 AM - Nov 26, 2017
    114 114 Replies 334 334 Retweets 1,009 1,009 likes

    neontaster ????
    @neontaster
    Nancy Pelosi, who called the Title IX rollback "a shocking attack on women," citing due process in her defense of Conyers is some a-grade high octane chutzpah.
    11:00 AM - Nov 26, 2017
    43 43 Replies 1,201 1,201 Retweets 3,199 3,199 likes

    No standards like DOUBLE standards, eh?? :^/

    The Democrat Party is toast in 2018....

  228. [228] 
    neilm wrote:

    Pelosi is trolling the right wing. She knows (as Michale has just demonstrated) that their first instinct is to mouth off hypocritically.

    The more the Fox News types attack Conyers the bigger the backlash against 45 - who is far more stained than Conyers and makes Franken look like an angel.

    What the right wing are ignoring is the lesson from the suburbs in the recent Virginia election - Pelosi obviously hasn't and she wants her gavel back.

    I'm hoping for Moore win to consolidate the impact outside of the deep South - it will be hay making time with both 45 and Moore mouthing off - the ads write themselves - the party of grabbers and child molesters is going to have an even more uphill battle, especially after the recent CBO report on the tax plan showing that everybody earning under $75K is getting hosed in the long term.

  229. [229] 
    neilm wrote:

    It isn't just the NFL that is seeing an attendance drop - college football is also in decline.

    The repeated meme in the different reports I read covering both the NFL and colleges is that this is the millennials' "fault". They just aren't as interested in watching football as prior generations.

    Maybe when your college foists you with debt that you can't pay off and then sics debt collectors on you, you lose interest in supporting them?

  230. [230] 
    Michale wrote:

    Pelosi is trolling the right wing. She knows (as Michale has just demonstrated) that their first instinct is to mouth off hypocritically.

    Wow, that is some impressive spin.. :D

    Josh Barro is obviously right: “My theory: After her MTP interview landed so badly, Pelosi told Conyers he was going to step aside, and that it could be his choice or hers.” Pelosi messed up badly this morning and needed some a sacrifice from Conyers to rebuild some of her “zero tolerance” credibility, as ridiculous as that is. She can’t make him quit Congress but she can make him quit as ranking member of the Judiciary committee. It was purely a question of whether he’d lose that status the hard way or the easy way.

    Now, when does he resign?
    https://hotair.com/archives...

    Of course, reality is much MUCH different..

    What the right wing are ignoring is the lesson from the suburbs in the recent Virginia election -

    BBBWWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHA

    You mean like Dumbocrats ignored the totality of their decimation on 8 Nov 2016??

    You funny... You ignore the lesson when Dumbocrats lost over 1000 elected seats, but think that a handful of wins that were pre-ordained is something with life-altering meaning..

    You funny.. :D

    I'm hoping for Moore win

    So, you are hoping (what you claim is) a pedophile wins the Senate race??

    Wow.. That's quite an admission...

    Pelosi obviously hasn't and she wants her gavel back.

    And Pelosi wanted Hillary to be POTUS..

    "You can't always get what you want...
    You can't always get what you want...
    You can't always get what you want....
    But ya get what ya need...."

    -Mick Jagger

    :D

  231. [231] 
    Michale wrote:

    It isn't just the NFL that is seeing an attendance drop - college football is also in decline.

    Facts to support???

    Maybe when your college foists you with debt that you can't pay off and then sics debt collectors on you, you lose interest in supporting them?

    Maybe.. But what does that have to do with the No Fans Left ???

  232. [232] 
    neilm wrote:

    I'm hoping for Moore win

    So, you are hoping (what you claim is) a pedophile wins the Senate race??

    Wow.. That's quite an admission...

    I've given up hope for places like Alabama. This is like an addiction - at some point you say: OK, you're obviously not going to learn until you hit the bottom of the barrel, but at least your example can be a lesson for the rest of us.

  233. [233] 
    neilm wrote:

    You ignore the lesson when Dumbocrats lost over 1000 elected seats

    The political pendulum swings one way then the other. The ire on the right has defined the last 10-20 years, and that anger peaked in 2016, but the pendulum will swing back as it always does, and most people think it has already started.

    We'll see, but you might be too smug for your own good - and smugness is a symptom I see in the markets just before they cyclically turn as well.

    Have you day of gloating, but prepare for a winter of discontent, grasshopper.

  234. [234] 
    neilm wrote:

    Maybe.. But what does that have to do with the No Fans Left ???

    I was trying to find out if this was:

    1. Only impacting the NFL
    2. Part of a systematic drop in interest in football in general
    3. Part of a systematic drop in interest in live sports

    It looks most like #2 from a brief investigation.

  235. [235] 
    Michale wrote:

    I've given up hope for places like Alabama

    Yea.. They are only fellow Americans but they voted for Trump.. So frak 'em.. If they don't think like you do, just write them up. They all are a bunch of delorables after all..

    Ya know, it's AMAZING you Democrats can't win elections.. :D

    The political pendulum swings one way then the other.

    And it hadn't swung THAT far in over a hundred years..

    If it had swung like that Left ward, ya would be screaming to the high heavens how significant it is.. Look at when it swung ever so slightly Left.. Ya are treating it as life altering..

    Yer so predictable. :D

    We'll see, but you might be too smug for your own good -

    Yea.. That's what ya'all kept telling me in the run up to the 2016 election.. :D We know what happened next.. :D

    Have you day of gloating, but prepare for a winter of discontent, grasshopper.

    Lemme know if it ever gets here.. :D

    It looks most like #2 from a brief investigation.

    By all means.. Show your facts... :D

    But, as things stand now, it's because whiny millionaires bitches are shitting on this country, it's military and flag and anthem because they hate the country..

  236. [236] 
    Michale wrote:

    Al Franken on whether he will face more groping allegations: ‘I don’t know. I can’t say.’
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2017/11/27/al-franken-on-whether-he-will-face-more-groping-allegations-i-dont-know-i-cant-say/?utm_term=.d43a7eeda4d0

    TRANSLATION: There are a LOT more accusations coming...

    Democrats, the DO AS I SAY NOT AS I DO Party.... :^/

  237. [237] 
    Michale wrote:

    Pelosi is trolling the right wing. She knows (as Michale has just demonstrated) that their first instinct is to mouth off hypocritically

    You see, this is EXACTLY ya'all's problem..

    You simply CANNOT see past your own Party ideology...

    Pelosi's MTP session was a total and complete bomb and confirmed EVERYTHING bad about how the Democrat Party handles sexual harassments and sexual assaults when Democrats commit them..

    But you just HAVE to spin it as a GOOD thing..

    No one here can concede, "Yea, Pelosi frak'ed up. My gods, that was abysmal..."

    It well and truly is PARTY UBER ALLES

    This is exactly why it simply is impossible to treat ANYTHING ya'all say as viable or well thought out..

    There were a few that had promise, but they seem to have either gone Dark Side or just gone dark...

  238. [238] 
    TheStig wrote:

    Neilm-199

    Thanks for the link to the Stan Sorscher article.

    I agree with your take home " raw capitalism inevitably moves from a win-win to a zero sum game as power and wealth get concentrated and rents get created." Very well put...especially your "rents get created" phrase. This is often overlooked.

    Interestingly enough, the topic of working class capital accumulation versus working class renter shows up in the Christmas Movie Fixture "It's a Wonderful Life" - which will soon be playing 24 hrs a day on certain cable channels.

    Another powerful trend since 1970 is, for my lack of a better term, the economic nomad, who must chance jobs - and often locations, multiple times during his/her working life (which seems to be getting longer). This plays into the rent equation. Likely a factor in divorce rates, which rocketed during the 70's 80's

    http://www.vanneman.umd.edu/socy441/trends/divorce.jpg

    In real life, Old Man Potter won.

  239. [239] 
    Michale wrote:

    The most absurd part of Pelosi’s statement is “I believe he understands what is at stake here and he will do the right thing.” It’s not up to Conyers to decide what’s right.

  240. [240] 
    Michale wrote:

    I know, I know.. I have been really hard on ya'all as of late..

    So many facts, so little factual rebuttal..

    Allow me to throw ya'all a bone... :D

    Is A Big, Blue Wave Forming Off The Political Coast?
    https://www.npr.org/2017/11/24/566127268/is-a-big-blue-wave-forming-off-the-political-coast

    Have a ball...

    I like my meat fresh and fighting, not sullen and demoralized.. :D heh

  241. [241] 
    TheStig wrote:

    Liz-173

    "Why would anyone wish to participate in this blog and want to block an author?

    It doesn't make a lot of sense."

    Reading some correspondents just wastes my time....and I know who they are. Scrolling around them is tedious - I like to skip the bad berry patches...which is why I favor custom blocking capabilities.

    In egregious cases black listing seems the appropriate course to me. CW is a benevolent despot.

    By the way Liz, you are a model of succinct prose...any Lacedaemonian in your family tree? :)

  242. [242] 
    Michale wrote:

    Reading some correspondents just wastes my time....and I know who they are. Scrolling around them is tedious - I like to skip the bad berry patches...which is why I favor custom blocking capabilities.

    Translation: I need my safe space because reality is just too much to handle...

    :D

  243. [243] 
    TheStig wrote:

    Neil M. 229, 234

    Maybe the drop in football viewership is due to the inherent problem of nothing happening most of the time. Aggravated by commercial content, but the game is mostly just people standing around and hearing other people talk about it. Watching people stand around on a TV screen is inherently boring. Watching people march around a field is boring. Even if you are drunk, or on the way to being drunk. No amount of camera work, slo-mo replay or CGI painting of the field can compensate. Even baseball has pitching to break up the tedium! Older football fans are habituated to the show, but dying off. Younger viewers aren't.

    Letterman had some interesting football fixes. Put more balls in the game. Allow the entire team on the field in the last 5 minutes.

  244. [244] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Stig and neil

    You guys look at what's been happening in the economy for the last 40 yrs or so, and erroneously conclude that what you call the "concentration of wealth" results from the rich stealing from the poor.

    The reality of the situation is that the wondrous things that have happened (high-tech, robotics, and globalization) that have raised the living standards of the developed world to the highest level in all of history, have combined to massively increase the productivity of the productive (i.e., the talented, the skilled and the ambitious), but have done very little to increase the productivity of the less productive/unproductive.

    The less productive/unproductive actually HAVE benefited enormously, through lower prices of goods and through income redistribution, but you guys bitterly resent the fact that they have not benefited in full proportion.

    OK, that's simply your personal feelings, opinions and value judgments (most likely based on your personal experiences), but it's simply not a realistic opinion.

    In the real world, the productive are always going to benefit the most from their efforts, 'unfair' or not.

  245. [245] 
    Michale wrote:

    TS,

    Maybe the drop in football viewership is due to the inherent problem of nothing happening most of the time.

    That's a logical possibility.

    Well, except for the fact that the fans who are not watching are saying it's because of the whiny millionaire bitches.. :D

    But good effort...

  246. [246] 
    Michale wrote:

    The less productive/unproductive actually HAVE benefited enormously, through lower prices of goods and through income redistribution, but you guys bitterly resent the fact that they have not benefited in full proportion.

    OK, that's simply your personal feelings, opinions and value judgments (most likely based on your personal experiences), but it's simply not a realistic opinion.

    In the real world, the productive are always going to benefit the most from their efforts, 'unfair' or not.

    FINALLY!!!!

    Someone around here who gets it!!

    Someone who gets that those who are lazy should not benefit as much as those who actually go out and WORK and EARN what they get...

  247. [247] 
    TheStig wrote:

    CRS-244

    'splain this:

    https://3c1703fe8d.site.internapcdn.net/newman/gfx/news/hires/2016/1-arerobotstak.jpg

    Productivity is a measure efficiency. You conflate it with income and wealth. Your underlying logic seems circular.

  248. [248] 
    Michale wrote:

    "When the reward for work is perceived to not be sufficiently more than the reward for doing nothing, it is unsurprising that people will do nothing. This is well understood human behaviour."
    -Deplorable Despot

    :D

  249. [249] 
    TheStig wrote:

    chaszzzbrown: RE tamper monkey script: Multiple Bogies.

    Line 26

    I haven't had much luck modifying this to simultaneously counter multiple targets in one pass. I'm not much of a coder, especially when it comes to modifying somebody else's code. Syntactically challenged.

    Little help?

  250. [250] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Stig

    Productivity has multiple definitions. You choose to use the technical one that measures the ratio/relation of outputs to inputs.

    There is also the most basic definition, that of relating to actually creating/producing things vs. not producing things, right? your "underlying logic" seems evasive at best, ridiculous at worst.

  251. [251] 
    Michale wrote:

    chaszzzbrown: RE tamper monkey script: Multiple Bogies.

    Line 26

    I haven't had much luck modifying this to simultaneously counter multiple targets in one pass. I'm not much of a coder, especially when it comes to modifying somebody else's code. Syntactically challenged.

    Little help?

    Help me CB!!! Help me!!!!!

    FACTS and REALITY are breaking thru my Safe Space and I can't handle them!!!!!!!

    WAAAAAAAA WAAAAAAAAAAAAA

    :D hehehehehehehehe

    Gods, it must really suck to be so afraid of facts and reality that you can't survive them without a Safe Space... :D

  252. [252] 
    TheStig wrote:

    CRS-250

    Mea culpa, I choose to use the correct definition in a given domain. With regards to economics, productivity is a measure of efficiency, a ratio of input to output.

    As Investopedia phrases it-

    "Productivity is an economic measure of output per unit of input. Inputs include labor and capital, while output is typically measured in revenues and other gross domestic product (GDP) components such as business inventories."

    As the chart I posted shows, worker productivity has increased, not decreased, yet their wages during the same interval have remained stagnant. Generalizing, the proverbial burger flipper is flippin' more burgers per hr but is being paid the same adjusted wage.

    Your argument seems to always boil down to: the poor are poor because they don't make any money. That is a circular argument...Begging the Question...Propaganda...Alternative facts.

  253. [253] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Stig

    The single source of the most misunderstandings/miscomprehensions in the study and understanding of the science of economics is money. The economically ignorant tend to conflate money with real wealth (goods and services that can be consumed to raise our standard of living). Money is only the medium of exchange which facilitates trade by expressing apples and widgets in a common denomination. It cannot be consumed to sustain life. So, bottom line, no, the poor are not poor because they don't earn much money, they are poor because their contribution toward physical output (if there is a contribution) is valued low by the marketplace.

    Your worker productivity chart expresses productivity across all aspects of the economy, without differentiating between the contributions of the engineers and the burger flippers. When you average everybody in together, it distorts the results.

    As I attempted to convey above, the marvels of electronic data processing have zero effect on the output of the burger flipper or the lug bolt tightener, but they contribute massively to the outputs of the engineers and managers.

  254. [254] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Stig

    Your economist's definition of 'productivity' for most usages at least, would be FAR better served by being described as 'efficiency' instead.

  255. [255] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    those who are lazy should not benefit as much as those who actually go out and WORK and EARN what they get.

    So I gather that you're in favor of raising the Capital Gains tax, as that favors the lazy whose money does all the work, as opposed to those whose actual labor is responsible for their paychecks.

  256. [256] 
    Michale wrote:

    So I gather that you're in favor of raising the Capital Gains tax, as that favors the lazy whose money does all the work, as opposed to those whose actual labor is responsible for their paychecks.

    And you want to change the subject to "actual labor" because you can't argue the facts..

    Sitting at a desk and figuring shit out is as much "work" as anything else...

  257. [257] 
    Michale wrote:

    That's what CRS was talking about above.. Ya'all want to cherry pick what you call "productive" to further yer agenda...

    But "productive" takes on many forms... Some even which doesn't fit in your ideological slavery...

  258. [258] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Sitting at a desk and figuring shit out is as much "work" as anything else...

    That gets lost when you start throwing around dog-whistle terms like "lazy", y'know.

    Like the way that Trump has already lapped Obama on number of holes played in Golf. You and I know that while Donald is lining up his putts, he's thinkin' 'bout stuff - maybe important stuff, but all we see is an overweight septuagenarian with silly hair trying to be Jack Nicklaus.

    Or take the Mara family, who own the NY Giants, or the Brown family who own the Cincinnati Bengals. They work hard to hold onto the immense wealth that they inherited, at least as much as any fantasy football team owner, and that's at least two to three hours a week, I can tell you. At least if Republicans have their way, they won't have to worry about estate taxes when they pass all that down to the next generation. Hard work or lucky birth...does it matter?

  259. [259] 
    Michale wrote:

    That gets lost when you start throwing around dog-whistle terms like "lazy", y'know.

    Only to those with a partisan agenda.. :D

    Like the way that Trump has already lapped Obama on number of holes played in Golf.

    You have no moral authority to complain about Trump's golf...

    and that's at least two to three hours a week, I can tell you

    Oh sure.. You can TELL me...

    But can you support that with facts?? Of course you can't...

    Hard work or lucky birth...does it matter?

    Hard work never hurts..

    But Dumbocrats would prefer to just live off the system and let Government take care of them...

  260. [260] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    But Dumbocrats would prefer to just live off the system and let Government take care of them...

    That's untrue, not to mention very mean-spirited.

  261. [261] 
    Michale wrote:

    That's untrue, not to mention very mean-spirited.

    The facts support it...

    Look how the food stamp rolls explosively expanded under Obama and the Democrats..

  262. [262] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    [259] [Democrats, I assume] would prefer to just live off the system and let Government take care of them

    Uh-huh. But the reality is that most folks have jobs and chores and occupations and callings and responsibilities and projects and enterprises and contractual obligations and appointments and opportunities to attend to. Nobody has the time to sit on their asses much anymore, and even those who can usually don't. Look at the number of folks who retire and immediately buy a Winnebago for a spin round the interstate system, or rich folk who bury themselves in charity work. I remember hearing of a study conducted in the '70's (so this is rumour,ok?) that found that, far from being idle, many drug dealers had longer days and made more decisions than corporate executives. Could you not say the same for a busy suburban mother of six? Or of a single mother holding down two part time jobs?

    Your economic construct then, is just polite snobbery. You and your rich friends are better than everyone else because your work is more productive or more meaningful than theirs.

    And that's just horseshit.

  263. [263] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    It's also very mean spirited.

  264. [264] 
    Michale wrote:

    Your economic construct then, is just polite snobbery. You and your rich friends are better than everyone else because your work is more productive or more meaningful than theirs.

    And that's just horseshit.

    That's an impressive chip on yer shoulder.. :D I especially like the part about my "rich friends"..

    Neil is the "richest" "friend" I have.. :D

    The fact is, the DEMOCRAT Party is the FREE RIDE Party..

    And THAT is why they were voted out of office..

    Because patriotic Americans are sick and tired of paying for other people's laziness..

  265. [265] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    There is no need for mean-spirited comments, especially here at CW.com ...

  266. [266] 
    neilm wrote:

    CRS [244] [253]

    If you disagree with somebody, then you decide they are xxx ignorant - can you drop this please, it makes you look completely ignorant.

    You guys look at what's been happening in the economy for the last 40 yrs or so, and erroneously conclude that what you call the "concentration of wealth" results from the rich stealing from the poor.

    Why are you putting things in inflammatory terms? It isn't "stealing", it is mostly concentration of wealth due to market forces. If there is anything nefarious going on it is hiding wealth in offshore tax havens and buying politicians to tilt the playing field in favor of capital over labor.

    As we have stated many times, the causes of the increasing inequality we are seeing are multifold, but there is little argument we are seeing it.

    Also the "Poor in America today are far richer than the richest of 100 years ago" argument does not address inequality, it just tells the poor to be happy with what they have.

    If you want to support raw capitalism with extreme winners and extreme losers, just come out and say so. However I believe we can do better as a society and distribute the wealth more fairly. I also believe that the circulation of money increases total wealth and that an efficient and fair way to increase circulation is to give money to the people who will spend it while at the same time increasing the total happiness in the country.

    If somebody worth millions inherits $100K it will make little difference to their lives, but if somebody is worth $50K and is earning $30K inherits the same amount it can significantly improve their lives.

    If you are arguing for a non-progressive tax system, let me know - we are then in a different territory.

  267. [267] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    ... at the very least, they should cost a lot more than regular comments.

  268. [268] 
    neilm wrote:

    Neil is the "richest" "friend" I have.. :D

    C'mon Michale, we are friends, not "friends" - offer of the BBQ is still open if you come over and I hope you enjoy the next Star Wars movie.

  269. [269] 
    TheStig wrote:

    CRS-254

    "Your economist's definition of 'productivity' for most usages at least, would be FAR better served by being described as 'efficiency' instead."

    Sorry to break this to you CRS, but those egg headed economists have already defined "efficiency" to suit their purposes:

    "the situation where some people cannot be made better-off by reallocating the resources or goods, without making others worse-off. It indicates that a balance between benefit and loss has been achieved. Also called allocative efficiency."

    - businessdictionary.com

    As in "efficient markets."

    I thought you had graciously stepped into CW.com to educate us, the ignorant natives? You don't even speak the Eco lingo...you remind me of Peggy Hill teaching Spanish. I'm not a economist - but at least I can understand what the the pros are saying.

  270. [270] 
    neilm wrote:

    The less productive/unproductive actually HAVE benefited enormously, through lower prices of goods and through income redistribution, but you guys bitterly resent the fact that they have not benefited in full proportion.

    Have you read Charles Murray's "Coming Apart" - a sorta sequel to "The Bell Curve"?

    Side note: Murray is misunderstood in my opinion, and is not the racist monster he is portrayed.

    In "Coming Apart" he examines the impact of the last few decades on different social groups. The solution he proposes isn't only money, but without money path to a better America is impossible.

  271. [271] 
    Michale wrote:

    There is no need for mean-spirited comments, especially here at CW.com ...

    At least not against the Left Wingery, eh?? :D

    Liz, I deal with mean-spirited comments on a daily, sometimes HOURLY basis...

    I just follow suit.. :D

    ... at the very least, they should cost a lot more than regular comments.

    If the charges are applied equally, I will be more than happy to do so.. :D

    But if there is one thing I learned in my hiatus, it's that debating with one hand tied behind my back is no fun.. :D

  272. [272] 
    neilm wrote:

    The fact is, the DEMOCRAT Party is the FREE RIDE Party..

    Did you know that the car dealership monopoly costs $1950 on average for each new car?

    This was the surprising analysis I read from the (very conservative) Heritage Foundation's "Daily Signal" a couple of years ago.

    http://dailysignal.com/2015/11/30/removing-dealership-monopolies-could-save-you-1950-on-a-new-car/

    You might also look at the money being spent on the military-industrial complex. The sugar industry is also worth some analysis.

    Free corporate rents far exceed what we do as a society for the needy.

  273. [273] 
    neilm wrote:

    OK Michale, I know you don't want to know anything about the tax bill, but look at one table from the CBO:

    The rows are impact by income group. The columns are the cumulative impact by the year at the top. For example, if you earn $75K-100K your total savings by 2019 will be $21,500 - good news.

    The bad news is that by 2027 you have paid more in taxes and your now you are only $1,390 ahead - i.e. you have paid back about $20,000 to the government in higher taxes over the intervening years.

    The real losers however are those earning less than $75K/year. By 2027, if you earn on average $30K-$40K/year your tax bill has gone up and you are now $7,600 worse off in total.

    Now the higher earners will do OK (hey, they pay for the Republicans, so you'd expect their employees to do their bidding), but they will really make out on the increase in dividends and/or stock market increases from the lower corporate taxes.

    https://arc-anglerfish-washpost-prod-washpost.s3.amazonaws.com/public/CDVMGQOGHI7VJOBWRYJL3XB2CM.jpg

  274. [274] 
    Michale wrote:

    OK Michale, I know you don't want to know anything about the tax bill, but look at one table from the CBO:

    Based on their assessment of TrainWreckCare, the CBO has absolutely NO credibility with me...

  275. [275] 
    Michale wrote:

    As Guy has thoroughly exposed, over the weekend House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi defended Congressman John Conyers as an "icon" amid allegations he fired a woman on his staff after she refused to give him sexual favors.
    https://townhall.com/tipsheet/katiepavlich/2017/11/27/nancy-pelosis-history-of-defending-sexual-abusers-n2414627

    This is why ya'all who are fighting against Moore are fighting a losing battle....

    Ya'all have absolutely ZERO credibility...

  276. [276] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    neil [270] Sorry, have not read Murray's book.

    [266] Which "causes of the increasing inequality" is it that we are seeing? Is it inequality of talent, inequality of skill, inequality of ambition, inequality of productivity, inequality of income, inequality of wealth, or all of the above?

    Re "However, I believe that we can do better as a society and distribute the wealth more fairly." Again the old "Manna from Heaven" attitude. Actual wealth (goods and services, NOT money!) is not "distributed", it is PRODUCED, by the sweat of somebody's brow, even if in the modern world, most brows don't actually sweat. Only after it has been produced by means of allegorical sweat, can it be RE-distributed to somebody whose brow did not even allegorically sweat.

    [272] What's your point about the dealership franchise monopoly costs for cars? We consumers have to rely on competition to prevent being screwed by monopolies. I'm guessing that the multitude of brands and dealerships where we can buy a new car in every city probably holds that monopoly cost to a bare minimum.

    The tariff protection for the U.S. sugar industry definitely represents a rent expense for consumers, (meaning a redistribution of income). The gov't justifies it a a necessary subsidy for farmers. I'm against it in principle, but see no way to avoid it, except by putting a lot of farmers out of business, which could create another set of perhaps worse problems.

  277. [277] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    neil P.S. I am 100% in favor of progressive income taxes.

  278. [278] 
    neilm wrote:

    Distributed vs. re-distributed - I don't care which term you think is more exact, I'll use either one.

    There are always differences in ability, etc. that cause inequalities. There are also differences in luck, etc. and nobody is calling for equal outcomes.

    If you are advocating raw capitalism, just come out and say it. I'm OK with that. But if you believe that society should help those that through no fault of their own are not as fortunate as others, then we need to talk about how much and in what manner we balance things. You might claim that today's poor have things they don't deserve, like TVs and cell phones, but is Dickensian England your model for America in the 21st Century?

    What should disqualify a person from any help? And how do we make laws that isolate them from assistance while helping the truly needy?

    I have a lot of family that have never had a job in their life and live lifestyles that few could dream of. There is and never has been any sweat on their brows, and good luck to them, I begrudge them nothing and frankly I'm happier than most of them because I earned what I have. Where do they fit in to your model?

  279. [279] 
    neilm wrote:

    I'm guessing that the multitude of brands and dealerships where we can buy a new car in every city probably holds that monopoly cost to a bare minimum.

    I would have thought so, but I started reading up on it after one of my friends daughters married the family of a large dealership and was surprised to see the hidden rent that the dealership monopoly imposes.

    Businesses have a multitude of free rides - and the current tax system is riddled with them. One of the disappointments with the current tax bill is that, unlike Reagan's in the 1980's it isn't trying to eliminate the hidden breaks and leveling the playing field for everybody.

  280. [280] 
    neilm wrote:

    I'm against it in principle, but see no way to avoid it, except by putting a lot of farmers out of business, which could create another set of perhaps worse problems.

    Agriculture is going through a major change in their business model at the moment. I spend a week hiking in the Alps with a friend who lived in Switzerland for many years and started learning about the farming system over there. It is incredibly subsidized - basically, as best I understand, there is a "culture tax" that supports small farmers whose style of farming is hopelessly uneconomical. It makes for lovely pastures with beautiful cows, with cowbells etc.

    When we think of farmers in the U.S. many people seem to have a similar "House on the Prairie" view. It isn't like that at all. Small holdings are part of a larger supply chain and for many their practices are dictated to them by the large distributes that they sell to. But even these farms are disappearing as conglomerates move in. These businesses are large enough that they should be able to effectively self insure and not require government subsidies to support them. In effect these subsidies result in lower food prices, but I'm not really a fan of this type of behavior for reasons we both probably agree on.

    For genuine small holding and multi-generational family farms the traditional ag insurance run by the government is a good model, but I'd contend that most of the large sugar industry companies are not really in this category. Especially as the import restrictions actually increase the costs to consumers.

  281. [281] 
    neilm wrote:

    OK Michale, I know you don't want to know anything about the tax bill, but look at one table from the CBO:

    Based on their assessment of TrainWreckCare, the CBO has absolutely NO credibility with me...

    Then we will have to wait until 2027 and do the accounting :)

    My understanding is based on personal financial planning, and the CBO office is only one analysis I've used - all point to bad news for income earners below $75K and good news for high income earners with large investments.

    But then, you probably don't give me much credibility either ;)

  282. [282] 
    neilm wrote:

    Michale:

    It turns out the the CBO thinks the earth isn't flat ;)

  283. [283] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Yeah, I'm aware of that Swiss situation, I lived there for a spell many years ago, but that's a very unique situation. Tourism is likely the main industry for the country, and the tourists expect to see a guy in Lederhosen swinging a scythe cutting grass hay on a 45 degree-slope mountain pasture, not a 300 HP swather cutting alfalfa on a 1000 acre level farm.

    But almost all countries subsidize their agriculture industries, for various reasons, and you are correct, the U.S. sugar tariff actually results in HIGHER consumer prices.

  284. [284] 
    chaszzzbrown wrote:

    [249] The Stig

    Ahh, good ol' line 26!

    To filter out Michale and myself as well, try replacing it with something like:

    if (['Michale','chaszzzbrown'].indexOf(liElm.find('cite').text()) >=0) {

    Explanation: The ['Michale','chaszzzbrown'] is an array of strings (note square brackets and quotes); the indexOf part determines if it can find the user's name in that list (which will be case sensitive now) and returns -1 if it is NOT in the list, otherwise returns a number >=0.

    Hope that helps!

    Cheers - Chas

  285. [285] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Michale,

    Liz, I deal with mean-spirited comments on a daily, sometimes HOURLY basis...I just follow suit.. :D

    That makes you a big part of the problem.

    Do you find happiness in being part of the problem?

  286. [286] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    But if there is one thing I learned in my hiatus, it's that debating with one hand tied behind my back is no fun.. :D

    What you are doing here hasn't much to do with debating ... debasing, maybe but, not debating ...

  287. [287] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    DAMN!!!

    But if there is one thing I learned in my hiatus, it's that debating with one hand tied behind my back is no fun.. :D

    What you are doing here hasn't much to do with debating ... debasing, maybe but, not debating ...

  288. [288] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    At least not against the Left Wingery, eh?? :D

    I single you out only because if you took my advice, this would be a much better place, regardless of what anyone else does or doesn't do ..

    That's a compliment, by the way. :)

  289. [289] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Ya'all have absolutely ZERO credibility...

    Then why do you bother with us? Why spend any of your time here?

    Seriously. I just don't get it ...

  290. [290] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    TS,

    By the way Liz, you are a model of succinct prose...any Lacedaemonian in your family tree? :)

    Well, I didn't start out that way. Ahem.

  291. [291] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    290 comments!?!

    Two hundred and ninety??!?

    Wow. This is going to take awhile...

    -CW

  292. [292] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale [35] -

    Oh, I do. I also tried to consider the people who lived through (for them) 8 years of Hell because Obama was in the White House. Understanding the other side is crucial to either converting them or defeating them, I've always known that!

    :-)

    [39] -

    See, this is why I've really missed you -- pithy movie quotes! While you were gone, several people tried trolling you to answer by quoting movies, because we've all become accustomed to it by now.

    My favorite, which was not only quoted in an ancient Apple software manual but also seems to sum up my attitude towards you (at times):

    "Open the pod bay doors, HAL!"
    "I'm sorry, Dave, but I'm afraid I can't do that."

    - 2001, A Space Odyssey

    Fun Arthur C. Clarke trivia: where did HAL's name come from? Move it all one letter forward in the alphabet and the answer is clear...

    :-)

    -CW

  293. [293] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale [46] -

    OK, what's your take on The Orville? I watched the first episode, and couldn't decide if it was bad comedy masquerading as sci-fi or bad sci-fi masquerading as comedy. Haven't watched it since. But then, I have never been a Seth McFarland fan, and don't watch Family Guy, so maybe I'm the wrong audience. But I'd be interested in your take on it...

    -CW

  294. [294] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale [50] -

    OK, you're out of practice. Rusty. I understand.

    Otherwise the obvious "Frak it!" quote from Battlestar Galactica would have appeared, right?

    :-)

    -CW

  295. [295] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale [52] -

    OK, that was funny about "ST:D" I have to admit. Although I could make the same comment you made about Obama, except about W. Bush's first idea for the Iraq invasion ("Operation Iraq Liberation") being a face-palm-worthy acronym... heh...

    I only saw the first episode before it retreated to premium channels, but my impression wasn't that good. It was kinda boring, I thought.

    OK, so far I'm with you. I thought the whole "different style Klingons" thing was way too wonky, but you are right, it provided continuity between the series (serieses?). Much better, I thought, was the tie-in between "The Tholian Web" and the alternate-universe "Mirror, Mirror" at the end of the Enterprise run. Especially the re-done opening credits, which were freakin' awesome! Starships strafing cites? What's not to love? Heh.

    But didn't the recent movies toss out the continutiy line? The whole "young Kirk and Spock" thing? Didn't that introduce a whole different timeline? I admit I haven't been keeping up on these things as I should, but hasn't the continuity already been shattered by the new movie line?

    OK, if Harcourt Fenton Mudd is involved, I think I'll probably have to binge-watch it at some point. Even a HFM homicidal maniac... I always saw him as more of a Lando Calrissian than a Han Solo, but I do agree with the word "scoundrel." I equated him to the guy who originally introduced the tribbles onto the space station, a harmlessly-intending disaster-waiting-to-happen. So we do agree there.

    As for Indy being Han's dreams in carbonite, well, I'll have to think about that one. Would it have been a dream or a nightmare? Remember, Han had probably never heard of Earth, or Nazis, or any of it...

    :-)

    -CW

  296. [296] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    neilm [53] -

    Fixed your close tag. You're welcome!

    :-)

    -CW

  297. [297] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    neilm [59] -

    Dang, that's a relevant link!

    Last year's pledge drive -- and kittens galore!

    Heh... seemed relevant to the article we're all commenting on somehow...

    :-)

    -CW

  298. [298] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale [61] -

    OK, let's just turn that back on itself: what has Trump done (tangible things, not just "everyone thinks he's great in the whole world" nonsense) that he promised you during the campaign? What does that list include?

    -CW

  299. [299] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    neilm [62] -

    Let's face it, 45 makes angry Americans feel good because he irritates the people they hate. That is basically the sum of his achievements.

    That seems to be about the sum total of Trump's "achievements" that I can see, too.

    As for the rest of it, that may be a brutal summation, but it also may be the spark which fires the Democratic wave next year (and yes I know that's an awfully mixed metaphor, spark and wave cancelling each other out as it were, but even so...).

    -CW

  300. [300] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale [72] -

    Don't know where this came from, exactly, but it is precisely the scenario I have been worried about whenever anyone brings up "self-driving vehicles."

    My test-case scenario: you're driving south through Big Sur on Highway 1. To your left is a lane of the road and then a sheer cliff, climbing upwards. To your left is a short berm and a steep cliff, dropping down a few hundred feet to the Pacific Ocean. You come around a curve (the road is constant curves, as it winds around the shoulder of the cliff) and a pregnant woman pushing a baby stroller is in your lane.

    Your car can steer into the sheer cliff on your left, but there's a good chance you'll broadside the woman anyway. It can continue in your lane, which would definitely hit the woman, but might leave you OK. Or it can steer itself off the cliff, killing you but saving the woman illegally crossing the road.

    Software programmers have to make these decisions, before the fact. They have to program such scenarios into the car.

    So what should they choose? And how much control over that should the owner of the car have?

    Should there be settings where you can choose how extreme the circumstances are which protect the passengers of the car, or should that be some sort of pre-existing standard?

    These are all very heavy questions, steeped in law, software programming, morality, and several other disciplines.

    But they're probably going to be answered without any sort of adequate debate about their consequences. We'll all likely have to wait for a giant test case when something goes horribly wrong.

    That's a pretty heavy thing to consider. Full disclosure: I worked for many years, in another lifetime, as a software quality assurance engineer (and manager), in Silicon Valley. Which is a glorified name for "bug-hunter."

    What I learned: bug-free software DOES NOT EXIST. If there is a fatal accident with a self-driving car, who gets sued? The software engineers who wrote the code, or what?

    All important questions...

    -CW

  301. [301] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    OK, that's it for now, but I do promise to get through all of these comments eventually...

    -CW

  302. [302] 
    Michale wrote:

    That makes you a big part of the problem.

    Do you find happiness in being part of the problem?

    No...

    But neither is being alone in being part of the solution...

    At least when I am part of the problem, I have a LOT of company.. :D

    You want to join me in being part of the solution?? Then start speaking out against those who are part of the problem instead of just singling me out... :D

  303. [303] 
    Michale wrote:

    What you are doing here hasn't much to do with debating ... debasing, maybe but, not debating ...

    Perhaps... But as I have always pointed it, I just go where other people lead me....

    But kudos to the play on words.. That was excellent. :D

    I single you out only because if you took my advice, this would be a much better place, regardless of what anyone else does or doesn't do ..

    That's a compliment, by the way. :)

    Yes it is and I thank you..

    But did you ever stop to consider how *I* would feel about being everyone's punching bag and not being allowed to respond in kind???

    Blaming me for what goes on in here is like blaming the nerds on the playground because the bullies are being assholes...

    Then why do you bother with us? Why spend any of your time here?

    Seriously. I just don't get it ...

    "I never run out on a friend.."
    -Sean Penn, TAPS

    It's Fund Raising time... Why should CW suffer because most people here are...... not very nice..

  304. [304] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    290 comments!?!

    Two hundred and ninety??!?

    Sorry... I am a little rusty.. I'll get those numbers up.. :D

    Oh, I do. I also tried to consider the people who lived through (for them) 8 years of Hell because Obama was in the White House. Understanding the other side is crucial to either converting them or defeating them, I've always known that!

    With respect, there seems to be a dearth of commentaries that address the concerns of Trump supporters.. And the comments are nothing but attacks on the "deplorable" Trump supporters..

    Fun Arthur C. Clarke trivia: where did HAL's name come from? Move it all one letter forward in the alphabet and the answer is clear...

    I'll see your ACC trivia and raise you a DEEP SPACE NINE fun fact..

    In the episode TRIALS AND TRIBBLE-LATIONS, when the Defiant crew goes back in time and interacts with Kirk and Spock, Bashir and O'Brien had just gotten chewed out by Kirk and stepped into the corridor outside the Transporter Room.. They noticed a tribble and then peered around a corner and saw a whole mass of tribbles.. There was a gray-haired Red Shirt, petting one of the tribbles... That Red Shirt was none other than David Gerrold, the author of the original TROUBLE WITH TRIBBLES screenplay.. :D

    OK, what's your take on The Orville? I watched the first episode, and couldn't decide if it was bad comedy masquerading as sci-fi or bad sci-fi masquerading as comedy. Haven't watched it since. But then, I have never been a Seth McFarland fan, and don't watch Family Guy, so maybe I'm the wrong audience. But I'd be interested in your take on it...

    Give it a couple more episodes.. I guarantee you will like it.. Some of the episodes are incredible. There is one episode where they are making First Contact with an Earth like society where their system of justice is based TOTALLY on Upvotes and Downvotes... It's mind-blowing.. :D

    I consider ORVILLE to be Sci-Com.... I too went in expecting GALAXY QUEST- THE SERIES and was left VERY confused..

    I even Disqus Authored a discussion about The Orville if you ever get any free time to read it.. It's a fascinating conversation that has absolutely NO politics... OK OK.. very minimal politics because it strays into Discovery..

    https://disqus.com/home/discussion/channel-scifi/the_orvile_sci_fi_or_comedy/

    OK, you're out of practice. Rusty. I understand.

    Otherwise the obvious "Frak it!" quote from Battlestar Galactica would have appeared, right?

    Frak me!!!

    "Pluck my life!!"
    -Red, ANGRY BIRDS

    I *AM* rusty!! I can't believe I missed that!!

    Senator Al FrakIt

    "Has a nice ring to it, don'tcha think??"
    -Vannilope Von Schweetz, WRECK IT RALPH

    :D

    OK, that was funny about "ST:D" I have to admit. Although I could make the same comment you made about Obama, except about W. Bush's first idea for the Iraq invasion ("Operation Iraq Liberation") being a face-palm-worthy acronym... heh...

    I was actually searching for a Right Wing example, but couldn't remember any.. Thanx for your contribution to my mental archives.. :D It's getting crowded in there...

    "I'm worried, Ray. It's getting crowded in there and all my data points to something big on the horizon."
    -Egon, GHOSTBUSTERS

    I only saw the first episode before it retreated to premium channels, but my impression wasn't that good. It was kinda boring, I thought.

    I gets REAL better REAL fast... Let me know if you want the rest of the mid-season..

    But didn't the recent movies toss out the continutiy line? The whole "young Kirk and Spock" thing? Didn't that introduce a whole different timeline? I admit I haven't been keeping up on these things as I should, but hasn't the continuity already been shattered by the new movie line?

    Yea, but that's for the movies. What I call STAR TREK 90210... The movies have been established as the "Kelvin Universe"... Discovery producers have made it clear that Discovery takes place in the "real" universe, not the Kelvin Universe...

    So, canon is still in effect..

    As for Indy being Han's dreams in carbonite, well, I'll have to think about that one. Would it have been a dream or a nightmare? Remember, Han had probably never heard of Earth, or Nazis, or any of it...

    And, of course, it only holds true for the first 3 INDIANA JONES movies.. Because, after LAST CRUSADE, Han had been free'ed from the carbonite..

    But it's a pretty kewl theory if you don't dig too deep.. :D

    OK, let's just turn that back on itself: what has Trump done (tangible things, not just "everyone thinks he's great in the whole world" nonsense) that he promised you during the campaign? What does that list include?

    Making America Great Again...

    American pride is up, American confidence is up.. My business is up... Illegal immigration is way WAY down...

    But the first three are what makes me happiest...

    Don't know where this came from, exactly, but it is precisely the scenario I have been worried about whenever anyone brings up "self-driving vehicles."

    I read an article about what could happen if an auto-car meets a KOBYASHI MARU scenario..

    I can dig it up if you want to read it..

    What I learned: bug-free software DOES NOT EXIST. If there is a fatal accident with a self-driving car, who gets sued? The software engineers who wrote the code, or what?

    All important questions...

    And most important question, in my mind, is how do we program the car??

    When it comes to safety and preserving life, is the car's priority it's owner? It's passengers?? Society???

    And, as you point out, who is responsible when the car fraks up and kills someone??

  305. [305] 
    Michale wrote:

    And now for your morning laugh, courtesy of a Canadian Teachers Union..

    https://static.pjmedia.com/trending/user-content/51/files/2017/11/Screen-Shot-2017-11-26-at-11.48.53-PM.png

    Liz, what IS in yer water up there??? :D

  306. [306] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    You expect me to click on that?

  307. [307] 
    Michale wrote:

    You expect me to click on that?

    If you don't, you won't see the funny picture. :D

  308. [308] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I'll think about it ...

  309. [309] 
    Michale wrote:

    That's all I can ask.. :D

  310. [310] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Indeed.

  311. [311] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz,

    Why would anyone wish to participate in this blog and want to block an author?

    It doesn't make a lot of sense.

    Perhaps a little growing up is in order ...

    Don't let TS fool you.. He doesn't want to ignore me.. He just needs a Safe Space from which he can attack me and insult me and then be free from any consequences of his immaturity...

    What he doesn't understand is that ya'all pay the price for his childishness and immaturity...

  312. [312] 
    Kick wrote:

    Charles Brown, Esq.
    284

    To filter out Michale and myself as well, try replacing it with something like:

    Filter you out!? Are you bonkers?
    You're a good man, Charlie Brown.
    Nice to "see" you. Come back more often. :)

  313. [313] 
    Kick wrote:

    CW: Playing catch up. Nice article here. I feel your pain, too... literally... because I also had to take care of some dental issues around the same time you posted about yours (two dental surgeries with still more to come later... lots of meds), and I also got a jury summons. I think you and me must be living somewhat parallel lives right now and...

    We need a vacation! :)

  314. [314] 
    MHorton wrote:

    I've lost all respect for you.

    The fact that you welcome back Michale, and act as though he hasn't lied, insulted, and slandered people on your page, sickens me.

    I'm sorry you've been depressed, but as long as you allow people to spread propaganda, lies, and insults in these comments, no amount of friendly banter on your part is going to fix it.

    Have fun.

  315. [315] 
    Michale wrote:

    I've lost all respect for you.

    The fact that you welcome back Michale, and act as though he hasn't lied, insulted, and slandered people on your page, sickens me.

    As opposed to ya'all who have lied insulted and slandered and attacked me on a daily basis??

    I'm sorry you've been depressed, but as long as you allow people to spread propaganda, lies, and insults in these comments,

    He lets you do it.. Why ya whining?? :D

    Have fun.

    You too, Mary Sunshine.. :D

Comments for this article are closed.