ChrisWeigant.com

My 2017 "McLaughlin Awards" [Part 2]

[ Posted Friday, December 29th, 2017 – 18:22 PST ]

Welcome back to the second part of our year-end awards column! For those who may have missed it, check out Part 1 from last week to see what awards have already been handed out.

Since these columns are always monstrously long, let's just dive right back into the 2017 McLaughlin awards, shall we?

 

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   Destined For Political Stardom

We're going to hand this award out in generic fashion, to "women in politics." As a direct result of both the resistance movement against Trumpism and also of the #MeToo scandals, there is a new and encouraging wave of women entering politics right now. Women are signing up to run for office in huge numbers, at all levels of government. This is likely going to lead to a whole bunch of them getting elected next November. Women voters (especially in the suburbs) are going to be the determining factor in getting women candidates elected, as well.

Back in the 1990s, we had a similar year that was dubbed "The Year Of The Women." My bet is that we're going to see the second "Year Of The Women" in politics in 2018. Maybe they'll call it the "Nevertheless, She Persisted" year, who knows?

 

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   Destined For Political Oblivion

Omarosa, maybe?

Steve Bannon, hopefully.

Roy Moore, definitely!

Kidding aside, I have two Destined For Political Oblivion awards to hand out, one for each side of the aisle. It may sound harsh, but Doug Jones is quite likely heading for political oblivion, the next time he has to face Alabama voters. Unless he runs against Roy Moore again, the likelihood is that his deep red state will revert to form next time around and elect a Republican. After all, the same thing happened to Scott Brown in Massachusetts after his upset victory. Of course, this won't happen for three years, but eventually Jones will lose his Senate seat to a normal Republican candidate.

On the Republican side, I'm going a little further out on a limb and predicting that Paul Ryan will not only step down as speaker, but also will not run for re-election. Maybe it's just wishful thinking, but I think the rumors floating around Washington that he's thinking of stepping down will prove to be true. He never really wanted the job anyway, but the strangest thing is that he may be the only politician ever who honestly wants "to spend more time with his family." His kids are growing up, and Ryan hates that he's missing out on large parts of their childhood, so he may actually resign to be a better father -- something a whole bunch of politicians have claimed, over the years -- but for Ryan, it might actually be true.

 

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   Best Political Theater

Taken literally, the award would have to go to Saturday Night Live, which has been knocking the political sketch comedy out of the park on a regular basis, all year long. Melissa McCarthy as Sean Spicer and Alec Baldwin as Donald Trump were two of the high points of the year in political comedy, that's for sure.

But taken a little less literally, as we normally do, there were two strong candidates for Best Political Theater. The resistance to the Republican "repeal and replace Obamacare" bills was both incredibly impressive and also incredibly effective. People in wheelchairs getting arrested in congressional offices certainly forced everyone in the building to stop and think about what they were trying to do. And, in the end, they succeeded in shaming three GOP senators into voting the whole plan down.

That was impressive, but there was one bit of political theater that really deserves the Best Political Theater award -- the Women's March on Washington. One woman had the idea to protest Donald Trump becoming president, and it spread like wildfire. The crowd was bigger than the one that showed up for the Inauguration itself, in fact. That's stunning, when you think about it.

The Women's March really set the tone for the resistance to Trump for the entire year, in fact. For that they deserve the Best Political Theater award.

 

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   Worst Political Theater

Um... that gargoyle Disney just unveiled in their animatronic "Hall Of Presidents" that is supposed to be Trump?

Kidding aside, the most revolting thing in this category to us was the farce of Melania Trump's "anti-cyberbullying" campaign. I mean, has she met her husband?

Trump tossing paper towels to Hurricane Maria victims in Puerto Rico (and telling them to "have a good time") was pretty bad political theater, too.

Pretty much every time Trump speaks to the press -- including his three press conferences -- was pretty bad theater, that's for sure. As were those cringeworthy cabinet meetings where every department head in the room is forced to compete with each other to see who can praise the "Dear Leader" more -- that was something straight out of a third-world dictatorship, really.

But all of these could not compare to the worst political theater of the year, which happened in Charlottesville, Virginia. From the tiki torches to the white supremacists chanting to the running battle in the streets to the death of a counterprotester by vehicular homicide, Charlottesville was without question the Worst Political Theater. And that's not even counting the boneheaded reaction from Trump, either.

 

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   Worst Political Scandal

While the #MeToo phenomenon might qualify, it was a more broad-based scandal, since it hit the entertainment world, the news media, and politics simultaneously.

Instead, the Worst Political Scandal was all the Russian ties to the Trump campaign and the Trump White House. Of course, this could easily become the Worst Political Scandal of 2018 as well, but even so far it has easily been the biggest scandal in Washington all year long. From the firing of James Comey to watching Jeff Sessions squirm before Congress, this cloud has remained over the White House throughout the year. Bob Mueller is really only getting started, so there will be a lot more shoes to drop as it unfolds, but the Russian influence over Trump and all around him was easily the Worst Political Scandal of the year.

 

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   Most Underreported Story

What with the constant unending firehose of nonsense emanating from the White House, there were several important stories that were all but ignored last year by the mainstream media. Some received a little attention, but none received the attention they truly deserved.

Very early in 2017, a story broke about Mike Pence using a private, unsecured email account to discuss national security issues. Even worse was the fact that this email account had been hacked. For all the ink spilled over Hillary Clinton's email problems, you'd think the media would have had a field day with this one. Sadly, you'd be wrong. Who even remembers the story now?

A strong contender for the Most Underreported Story of the year was the woefully inadequate response to Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico. Even the Katrina response was better, in some respects. These are American citizens, and the media halfheartedly covered the story for about a week, and then moved on. The people of Puerto Rico still haven't moved on from the storm -- they're still struggling with getting clean water and power to all parts of the island. It goes without saying that if this were taking place in Florida or South Carolina, the media would have covered a lot more than just the first week of the aftermath.

I did what I could to point out the fact that in Trump's original tax-cutting proposal (and in some of the draft bills in both the House and Senate), the Alternative Minimum Tax was completely abolished. This would have meant -- from the only recent Trump tax return that has been made public -- that Trump would have saved a whopping 81 percent of the taxes he paid. That's saving four dollars out of five, folks. But few in the media noticed this, even though it was the easiest thing to spot when comparing Trump's taxes to his tax proposal.

Of course, if Donald Trump were judging this category, he'd have all kinds of amusing (and fanciful) nominations, but we'd have to agree with one of them. Last year saw the Islamic State's "caliphate" reduced to almost zero, in terms of a physical footprint on the map. They used to control major portions of both Syria and Iraq. Now they don't. They've been pushed entirely out of Iraq, and only hold a few scattered towns (and some desert wasteland) in Syria. Now, this was largely due to two major factors: President Obama's war plan (which Trump didn't change much at all) and the tacit divvying up of Syrian territory between Russia and the United States ("You guys can bomb here, but over the river is where we'll bomb, so our planes don't get into dogfights...."). Still, the progress has been impressive and overwhelming. The defeat of the Islamic State's state does not mean the eradication of the group, by any means, but it does cut off most of their income and shows them to be a loser on the world stage, making it harder to entice new recruits. But, strangely, other than some coverage of the fall of Mosul and Raqqa, the American media largely ignored this progress on the ground.

The situation in both Yemen and Saudi Arabia were two major stories that were also mostly ignored. Saudi Arabia is waging war in Yemen with American weapons, and yet it is little discussed here. This is all part of a regional proxy war between the Saudis and the Iranians, so it does have larger implications. In Saudi Arabia itself, the new monarch is moving to consolidate his power (arresting hundreds, even members of the royal family) as well as modernize their image slightly to the rest of the world (women will soon be allowed to drive, for instance). This will be a long-term story worth keeping an eye on, since the Saudis are one of the lynchpins of American foreign policy in the region.

But it is a larger foreign policy issue that wins the Most Underreported Story of the year -- America's retreat from the world stage, and from its post-WWII leadership role in global politics. Trump promised to be a disruptive force, and nowhere is this more apparent than when considering America's shrinking presence in world affairs. Trump had to be convinced that NATO was even worthwhile, to say nothing of the United Nations. Trump (and Rex Tillerson) seem to want to dismantle most of the State Department, here at home. The rest of the planet is recoiling in horror from the Trump administration, and there are several countries stepping into the void that Trump has left. Germany is more influential in Europe at this point than the United States. China is busy making all sorts of deals because America has walked away from world trade. Militarily, Trump is stuck to the tar baby that is Kim Jong Un, but everyone can see that Trump really has no viable options other than begging the Chinese to do something about it. That's not exactly projecting American power.

On issue after issue, from the Paris climate accords to NATO to trade to the United Nations, the rest of the world is paying less and less attention to American interests in general. This period now seems akin to the psychological shock to Great Britain when it realized, after World War II, that its empire was disappearing and its status as a world power was on a serious decline. Trump's lack of leadership and lack of understanding of how the world works has led to a similar very serious decline in American influence on the world stage.

That should be a major media story. But it isn't. Each individual action by Trump is covered, but nobody has taken the time to weave it all together into a "big picture" story, which is why America's foreign policy decline is the Most Underreported Story of the year.

 

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   Most Overreported Story

This one is easy.

The Most Overreported Story of 2017 was anything and everything that Donald Trump tweeted. He fires off a few sentences and the cable news world goes crazy for days on end. Over and over again. Whenever bad news hit, Trump successfully changed the subject by picking a target almost at random and unloading some bile upon them. Then there'd be a back-and-forth for days, by the end of which nobody would be talking about the bad news the tweet was designed to deflect from. The Most Overreported Story was without a doubt Trump's Twitter feed.

 

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   Biggest Government Waste

This one is also pretty easy. There were scandals over Trump officials wasting millions on luxury private travel expenses. Also, Trump spending something like one in every three days playing golf has led to enormous costs for the Secret Service, which is definitely scandalous.

But the Biggest Government Waste is easily the "Election Integrity Commission," a blue-ribbon panel created because Donald Trump couldn't face the hard cold fact that he lost to Hillary Clinton in the popular vote. To his mind, this meant that there must have been millions of fraudulent votes from illegal immigrants. So he created a commission to dig into this fantasy.

There are plenty of things in the federal government which waste lots of money on a regular basis (the Pentagon, to name just one), so do we really need to create new and inventive ways to waste taxpayer money? This may be the first time in history an actual commission was created just because the president is so deeply insecure. The Election Integrity Commission is, hands-down, the Biggest Government Waste of the year.

 

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   Best Government Dollar Spent

While we could go generic here and give the Best Government Dollar Spent award to something like the Congressional Budget Office or Medicaid, there were two stronger candidates for the award.

The first is Bob Mueller's investigation. Best money spent all year, in a lot of ways. But instead, I'm going to get very specific and give the Best Government Dollar Spent award to all the money spent to take down Confederate statues.

Special recognition is due to New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, for taking the lead in this effort. Not only did he oversee the removal of four Confederate statues, he took great pains to explain why they were coming down, in case it was unclear to anyone. From an opinion article he wrote at the time:

The record is clear: New Orleans's Robert E. Lee, Jefferson Davis and P. G. T. Beauregard statues were erected with the goal of rewriting history to glorify the Confederacy and perpetuate the idea of white supremacy. These monuments stand not as mournful markers of our legacy of slavery and segregation, but in reverence of it. They are an inaccurate recitation of our past, an affront to our present and a poor prescription for our future.

The right course, then, is to excise these symbols of injustice. The Battle of Liberty Place monument was not built to commemorate the fallen law enforcement officers of the racially integrated New Orleans police and state militia. It was meant to honor members of the Crescent City White League, the citizens who killed them. That kind of "honor" has no place in an American city. So, last month, we took the monument down.

And in a speech he gave defending the statues' removal, he was even more explicit in his views:

It is self-evident that these men did not fight for the United States of America. They fought against it. They may have been warriors, but in this cause they were not patriots.

These statues are not just stone and metal. They are not just innocent remembrances of a benign history. These monuments purposefully celebrate a fictional, sanitized Confederacy; ignoring the death, ignoring the enslavement, and the terror that it actually stood for.

After the Civil War, these statues were a part of that terrorism as much as a burning cross on someone's lawn; they were erected purposefully to send a strong message to all who walked in their shadows about who was still in charge in this city.

Bravo, Mayor Landrieu! The era of revering the Civil War for all the wrong reasons is seemingly coming to a close. All across the South, statues came down -- either quietly in the dead of night, or accompanied by a last gasp of support from historical revisionists. But the main thing is they came down. Meaning no African-American has to see them while walking down a public sidewalk or in a public park anymore.

Best Government Dollar Spent of the whole year, by far.

 

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   Boldest Political Tactic

There was one incredibly bold political move earlier this year -- long before the sexual harassment scandals erupted, even. Noah Dyer, running for New Mexico governor (originally as a Democrat, but now as an Independent), created a web page on his campaign site titled "Scandal and Controversy." Here's just one portion of what he wrote there:

Noah has had both deep and casual sexual experiences with all kinds of women. He is an advocate of open relationships. He's had group sex and sex with married women. He has sent and received intimate texts and pictures, and occasionally recorded video during sex.

Dyer announced his campaign on Valentine's Day, in the form of a "love letter" to New Mexicans, which whispered sweet nothings to the voters, including: "I want to make dinner for you, rub your feet." Creepy or not, you've got to admit it's a pretty bold political tactic (again, Dyer did so long before the Harvey Weinstein story broke).

The boldest thing Donald Trump did all year was to fire James Comey, of course. The boldest thing the Democrats did was when Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi sold Trump on a budget deal that absolutely yanked the rug out from under Republicans (including Trump's Treasury secretary, who was in the room).

I almost gave this award to Steve Bannon, for the bold tactic of trying to destroy his own political party by any means necessary. Isn't it amusing when political revolutions turn and devour their own?

But, really, the Boldest Political Tactic of the year was the "Dreamers" -- the children affected by Trump scrapping the DACA program. The tactic didn't begin in 2017, but it certainly became more noticeable. Every single one of the Dreamers faces the possibility of arrest and deportation on a daily basis. But instead of keeping their heads down in the hopes of escaping notice, they are speaking out. That takes a lot of guts, when you consider the risk they run by doing so. By publicly standing up, they are making themselves even more of a target for arrest. How many other protesters face such dire consequences merely by speaking out?

The Dreamers are tired of living in the shadows. They thought they had a reprieve under President Obama, but Trump yanked that out from under them. Their last chance is to convince Congress to act, which is a longshot at best, these days.

But for having the guts to put their entire future on the line just by speaking out, the Dreamers win the Boldest Political Tactic of the year.

 

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   Best Idea

The Twenty-Fifth Amendment? Tom Steyer's impeachment ads? Heh.

I have two awards in this category, because I couldn't decide between them. The first goes to the congressional staffers who put together the Indivisible site. They know firsthand what works and what does not when it comes to popular opinion swaying Congress. So they designed a playbook for anyone and everyone to use to do so. This concept spread like wildfire, and Indivisible groups sprang up across the country. After the Women's March on Washington, this was the perfect place for people to put their energies, and it seemed to pay off in a big way in the defeat of the Republican "repeal and replace" bill. The resistance against Trump (or, as some style it, "The Resistance") is made up of many different parts, all working together toward a common goal. A big part of that emerged from the grassroots this year as a direct result of the Indivisible website. This Best Idea went viral, in a big way.

My second Best Idea award goes to four Democrats who took it upon themselves to do what the national party absolutely refused to -- examine what went wrong in the 2016 election, and attempt to chart a course to correct some of the errors made. Early in the year, the Democratic National Committee saw a leadership battle, but since that time there has been no real effort to create a "post-mortem" or "autopsy" of the 2016 election. This has only exacerbated the split between fans of Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton within the party. To be blunt, Democrats cannot afford such factionalism right now.

The new chair of the D.N.C., Tom Perez, obviously didn't put examining the failures (and lessons learned) from 2016 very high on his priorities list. This is going to result in prolonging the bad feelings between the Bernie and Hillary camps. So the four authors -- three from within the party apparatus and one from the outside -- stepped into the void and created their own autopsy document. It is a serious effort which tries to be fair to both sides, and it focuses on examining what direction the party really should consider taking next year. This document is well worth reading, for anyone concerned about the future of the Democratic Party.

It was also such a great idea (since the party itself wouldn't do any serious self-examination) that it deserves a Best Idea award.

 

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   Worst Idea

The Fyre Festival?

There were actually so many incredibly bad ideas this year that it's tough to even remember them all. The most obvious candidate would be the sum total of Donald Trump's agenda (which would include, but not be limited to: the Muslim travel ban, pulling out of the Paris climate accords, pardoning Joe Arpaio, throwing out DACA and leaving nothing in its place, Trump's wall, a transgender ban in the military, moving our embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, and -- obviously -- goading a nuclear-armed madman in North Korea into a possible shooting war). Oh, and supporting an accused child molester -- can't forget about that particular icing on the cake, can we?

The Republican Congress had some spectacularly bad ideas this year, too, including restoring gun-purchasing rights to people who have been deemed by a judge to be mentally unfit to even handle their own finances (much less a firearm). But the big one was obviously their entire repeal-and-replace fiasco, which ate up a majority of the congressional calendar and ended in disaster for the GOP.

But we're going a little more specific in this category, just because the idea is so downright offensive. A few months ago, the Labor Department quietly inducted Ronald Reagan into their "Hall of Honor." Alex Bastani, president of a government employees union group at the Labor Department correctly labeled this a "cruel act of industrial violence." He pointed out Reagan's shameful history of busting the air traffic controllers' union while president, and an even more shameful episode from Reagan's past, when he led the Screen Actors' Guild union:

Bastani made a good point when he said the "temple honoring the work of men and women who sacrificed themselves to create an American middle class and who championed the causes of America's... working poor, is not the appropriate arena for Ronald Reagan."

Speaking of communism, Bastani also noted Reagan's connection, as a union president, to one of the shameful episodes in recent American political history: the Red Scare.

"It is a historical fact that he surrendered the names of dues paying members to the House Committee on Un-American Activities -- a Joseph McCarthy orchestrated witch hunt," Bastani wrote. "We recognize Mr. Reagan had the right to pursue his own personal political agenda. However, he did not have the right to take these actions while representing union members who were being harassed and bullied by the federal government simply for exercising their first amendment rights."

Putting Ronald Reagan in a Labor hall of fame with people who actually deserve to be there was not just a travesty and a gigantic slap in the face to unions everywhere, it was also the Worst Idea of the entire year.

 

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   Sorry To See You Go

Normally, I fill this category with a list of celebrities who passed on during the year, along with some snarky comments about people leaving the world of politics in one way or another. But this year, I'm really sorriest to see one man go.

As recently as last January, America was still respected in the world. Our president was not an international laughingstock who had to be coddled like a colicky baby lest he get cranky with some world leader or another. The phrase "alternative facts" had not been uttered, since we all lived within the same reality together. In short, we had a president every American could be proud of, right up to noon on January 20th.

Which is why I'm pre-empting this entire category this year to say Sorry To See You Go, President Barack Obama. And I know I'm not alone in that sentiment, that's for sure.

 

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   15 Minutes Of Fame

This one is absurdly easy. There's really only one possibility, when you think about it. Anthony "The Mooch" Scaramucci lasted a little longer than 15 minutes in his White House job, but not by a whole lot. He wasn't even there long enough for Saturday Night Live to properly spoof him! In fact, in keeping with the foreshortened spirit of the 15 Minutes Of Fame award, that's all that really needs saying. So long, Mooch, we barely knew ya!

 

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   Best Spin

While Sean Spicer and Sarah Huckabee Sanders both created some jaw-dropping spin last year, for the second year running, the award simply must again go to Kellyanne Conway. And speaking of Saturday Night Live spoofs, the It takeoff trailer they did with Kellyanne as Pennywise the Clown was pretty downright frightening!

When announcing the award last year, I noted:

But the Best Spin in the entire political universe wasn't an actual answer to a journalist's question. It was a human being. Because Kellyanne Conway is actually political spin in human form. She's that good at it. She embodies spin. In the future, you'll look up "political spin" in the dictionary, and her smiling face will be all the explanation necessary.

Let's see... (thumbing through brand new dictionary)... yep, there she is! People like Spicer and Sanders on their best (or worst) day can't keep up with the whirlwind of spin that is Kellyanne. She proved this very early on, when responding to media laughter over Trump's megalomaniacal Inauguration crowd claims. Kellyanne patiently explained that Trump lives in a world of "alternative facts," which is about the Best Spin we've ever heard for "completely detached from reality." And she said it with her patented smile. As long as she's on the political scene, Kellyanne Conway might have a permanent lock on the Best Spin award, now that we think about it.

 

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   Most Honest Person

That kid in the street crying: "But the emperor has no clothes on" springs immediately to mind.

Ahem.

Last year's Most Honest Person (who might have been in the running for 15 Minutes Of Fame if it weren't for The Mooch owning the category) was San Juan's mayor, Carmen Yulín Cruz. She honestly called the entire Trump administration on their horse manure in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, and she certainly did not pull her punches.

While the White House was proclaiming their response efforts in Puerto Rico were the "best ever," San Juan's mayor was wading through floodwaters saving her constituents' lives. The American media was somewhat lacking in their coverage, which might be explained by the fact that it was the third hurricane to hit America in a very short period of time. They were all sort of blurring together to the audience, to put this another way.

Cruz, however, personified the frustration at the lackadaisical federal response and she gave a few extraordinary media interviews where she told us exactly what was going on and exactly how she felt about it:

I am asking the president of the United States to make sure somebody is in charge that is up to the task of saving lives. I am done being polite, I am done being politically correct. I am mad as hell. We are dying here. If we don't get the food and the water into the people's hands, we are going to see something close to a genocide. I am begging, begging anyone who can hear us to save us from dying. We are dying, and you are killing us with the inefficiency.

Trump, of course -- being the class act that he is -- attacked Cruz for insufficiently praising his wonderfulness. Cruz responded in kind:

Tweet away your hate to mask your administration's mishandling of this humanitarian crisis. While you are amusing yourself throwing paper towels at us, your compatriots and the world are sending love and help our way. Condemn us to a slow death of non drinkable water, lack of food, lack of medicine while you keep others eager to help from reaching us since they face the impediment of the Jones Act.

Puerto Rico is still nowhere near recovered, more than two months later. The storm was of Brobdingnagian proportions, while Trump's response was utterly Lilliputian. Carmen Yulín Cruz pointed this out to all who would listen, and for doing so she is the Most Honest Person of last year.

 

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   Most Overrated

I was going to hand this to Steve Bannon, for obvious reasons. But then it occurred to me to get a little metaphysical.

Because clearly the Most Overrated of the year was: "Donald Trump, in Donald Trump's own mind." Trump seems to not just love superlatives when describing himself, his family, his presidency, or anything he's ever said or done -- he seems to actually medically require them the same way you or I require oxygen to breathe.

Nothing is ever modest, with Trump. It's the best ever. The most fantastic the world has ever seen. Better than any president ever. Biggest crowds ever. Most stupendous achievements of all time. My favorite from the entire year was when Trump claimed, after being criticized for giving a purely political speech while standing in front of the C.I.A.'s wall honoring agents who gave their lives for their country, claimed that he had gotten "the biggest standing ovation since Peyton Manning had won the Super Bowl." Wow. Talk about detached from reality, folks.

And that's just one tiny example. There are literally hundreds and hundreds of others from the past year alone. Trump does seem to live in a world of "alternative facts," where the entire universe revolves around him and him alone. Everything he does or touches immediately becomes the "best ever" or "biggest ever" or whatever. All facts to the contrary, of course, since Trump has not actually done much of anything superlative, to date. He got one Supreme Court justice confirmed, and one bill through Congress all year long, after all.

Trump's only valid claim to a superlative is debatable, but at least within the realm of possibility -- that he pulled off the biggest upset victory in presidential history. Historians might quibble (there was that whole "Dewey Defeats Truman" thing), but he could at least claim the biggest upset in a long time and have been taken seriously.

But Trump wasn't content with that. He claimed (inaccurately) that he actually won the popular vote somehow, that he won a landslide in the Electoral College, that he won the biggest Electoral College victory since Ronald Reagan, that he won the biggest electoral victory among Republicans since Ronald Reagan, that his Inaugural crowd was the biggest in all of American history, and that it didn't rain during the ceremony. None of it was true. All of these claims were pathetically easy to disprove, but inside the confines of Trump's mind, they were incredibly historic milestones that he had set.

So while there were certainly others in Washington and in politics that were indeed overrated, the Most Overrated of them all -- as evidenced by every easily-disprovable claim he makes, on an almost daily basis -- is the image of Donald Trump that lives within Donald Trump's fevered brain. So I guess he's earned his second superlative -- Most (Self-Referentially) Overrated.

 

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   Most Underrated

The runner-up in the Most Underrated category is the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as "Obamacare." Republicans tried to drive a stake through its heart for an inordinate amount of time this year, but what they instead achieved was driving its popularity to never-before-achieved heights. When the public learned how much they would be losing under the laughable "replace" part of the repeal-and-replace efforts, they recoiled in horror. Then they got mad and contacted their congressmen. Trump has been trying to sabotage it all year long, but even slashing the advertising budget and cutting the signup period in half didn't change Obamacare's popularity, as millions of people signed up on the exchanges once again. In polling, Obamacare is now solidly over 50 percent approval with the public -- something even Barack Obama never saw. So Obamacare was indeed underrated this year, by Republicans at any rate.

But the Most Underrated award goes to Democratic voters. Last year, there were six notable special elections, mostly to fill in vacancies left by Trump administration appointees (like Jeff Sessions). One of these was in a Democratic district (Kamala Harris got elected to the U. S. Senate, freeing up an appointment for Jerry Brown to make, and he elevated a congressman to her post), which went Democratic once again.

Four of the special elections were in deep red Republican House districts. One was in the Senate, in Alabama. The Republicans won all four of the House races, even the most expensive House race in history (in Georgia's sixth district). But here's the thing that many still haven't caught on to -- in every single one of these races, Democrats did a whole lot better than they usually do in such districts. They increased their share of the vote by double digits, even if they fell short in the end. The last race, of course, was the Alabama Senate race, which the Democrat actually won. This means the enthusiasm among the electorate is mostly being felt among Democratic voters. And if it holds true next November, it could usher in a shift in control of the House, the Senate, or possibly even both.

That concept would have seemed unimaginable, one year ago. The despair being felt by Democratic voters by Trump's election was deeply felt, and seemed crushing at times. But Democratic voters didn't give up, and they didn't stay home even for special elections. The party is attracting more votes from women, and more votes from wealthy and middle-class suburbanites. All of this bodes very well for the chances of a Democratic wave election next year.

The determination and the rage of the Democratic voters has been the Most Underrated all year long. It may in fact be underrated next year, as well. Right up to when the results are announced on Election Day.

 

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   Predictions

Before making 2018 predictions, we always review our own record to see how we did last time around. Here were our predictions for 2017, from last year's column:

Trump's inauguration will be devoid of big-name celebrities, and Trump will be petulant about this snub. This is pretty much a lock already, in fact. There will be clashes between Trump supporters and Trump protesters at the actual Inauguration ceremony, out in the crowd.

Paul Ryan will be able to have Trump sign pretty much anything he wants for a certain period of time. The Republican Congress will attempt to pass their entire agenda, and whatever makes it out of the Senate alive will be signed by Trump, at least until the summer.

After this point, Trump is going to wage a very large and public battle with congressional Republicans over something or another that he wants to do but they think is a bad idea. I have no idea what issue this will center around, but I think after the honeymoon period between Ryan and Trump, things are going to get a lot more contentious.

Paul Ryan will step down as speaker before the end of the year, because the Tea Partiers will revolt against establishment Republicans once again. Whoever replaces him will be far less effective, though.

There will be a major scandal involving one of Trump's children and the accusation that the Trump family is nakedly selling "pay to play" access. Trump will deny it all ever happened.

The stock market will rise throughout the honeymoon period (with the Dow hitting over 22,000), but will make a major correction downward before year's end (Dow below its level when Trump took office).

Republicans in Congress will pass a bill supposedly killing Obamacare, but with at least a two-year waiting period before it takes effect. They will not, however, hold one single floor vote on any replacement plan in either chamber before year's end.

Whatever Trump does in Syria will make the situation worse. In addition, Trump will face one international crisis where he fails miserably, and Republican senators such as Lindsey Graham and John McCain will rip into Trump like a chainsaw in the aftermath.

Trump will continue to tweet, unfiltered. Nobody will be able to wrest this power away from him, because it will be the most enjoyable thing about being president, to him.

And finally, to double down on one I got wrong last year, a state legislature (in a state where ballot initiatives don't exist) will legalize recreational marijuana. My best guess for which state this is going to be would be Rhode Island.

Let's take these one by one and tote up how I did. Trump's Inauguration was devoid of celebrities, but it was also devoid of much of an audience, to boot. Trump did indeed react petulantly to this snub, and is still miffed about it, from all reports. There were some clashes in the streets, but the most dramatic snub of all was delivered the next day, when the Women's March On Washington took place. In any case, I'm awarding myself a "close enough" on this one.

Instead of Paul Ryan pulling Trump's strings, Trump pulled Ryan and McConnell's strings instead. Trump chased the pipe dream of "repeal and replace Obamacare" far longer than Ryan or McConnell wanted, fruitlessly in the end. By doing so, they wasted so much time that they essentially only accomplished one thing during the entire year, and that took until the final week in December. So I flat-out got this one wrong.

Likewise, the contention happened early in the year (over beating the dead horse of repeal-and-replace) and the part about Ryan passing bills (well, one bill, anyway) that he knows Trump will sign (even if Trump has no clue what is in them) happened later. So I can't even claim partial credit here.

Paul Ryan is still speaker, so I got that one wrong as well.

There was a major scandal involving one of Trump's children -- the meeting with the Russians. However, it wasn't pay-to-play, so I can only claim half credit on this one.

The stock market went up all year, so I missed that boat completely.

Republicans could not manage to pass any repeal-and-replace bill, obviously.

Trump wisely kept to Obama's basic war plan in Syria, and things didn't turn out all that bad. The North Korean situation, however, seems to qualify as an international crisis, although more of an ongoing one. Trump obviously has no clue what to do about "Rocket Man" (as he calls Kim Jong Un), but so far the situation hasn't (literally) exploded. Yet. So I can't claim credit for this prognostication.

Trump did continue to tweet, completely unfiltered. Nailed that one, although it wasn't that hard to predict, really.

I'm going to claim credit for the last one, even on a technicality. The Vermont legislature did indeed pass a recreational marijuana legalization bill -- the first in the country from a statehouse -- but the governor vetoed it. Still, that's close enough for government work, as they say.

So that's three and a half, out of ten. That's not that impressive a record, I fully admit. Let's see if I can do a bit better predicting what's going to happen in 2018.

The list of men revealed to be sexual predators will continue to grow, for at least the first few months of the year. The #MeToo movement has not yet come to an end, methinks.

The U.K. will come up with many creative ways to put off the invitation for Donald Trump to have a state visit. The idea is wildly unpopular in Britain, and it will not happen next year at all (for whatever stated reason, such as perhaps: "Oh, terribly sorry, Her Majesty is booked solid through 2021").

Bob Mueller's investigation will not be over any time soon. More indictments will be handed down, but the cloud hanging over the White House will still be present all the way through the midterms.

Trump will seethe, but will not in the end fire Mueller. During an election year, the fallout would be too disastrous for even Trump to contemplate.

The Supreme Court will rule that House districts in both Maryland and Wisconsin have so much bias to their boundaries that they are unconstitutional. This will have major consequences in the reapportionment after the 2020 Census.

John McCain will die while still a sitting U.S. senator. His interim replacement (if one is named) will not be Kelli Ward.

(This one is really me doubling down, since I already got it wrong for this year, I should mention.) The rumors turn out to be true, and Paul Ryan will announce he is not only stepping down from being speaker of the House, but also that he will not be seeking re-election to spend more time with his family. To the astonishment of all in Washington, he then does spend more quality time with his family. In November, Democratic candidate Randy "Iron 'Stache" Bryce wins Ryan's seat.

November is not just a wave election for Democrats, but a downright blue tsunami. Democrats pick up over 40 seats in the House. Pelosi will be challenged by a younger Democrat for the speaker's post in the leadership vote, but will easily beat back such a challenge and will reclaim the gavel in January of 2019.

Unfortunately, while Democrats defy all odds and actually pick up one seat in the Senate, this still leaves the Republicans just barely in control of the chamber, with a 50-50 tie. In other words, Mike Pence will be extra busy being the tiebreaker, from that point on.

OK, that's enough for this year. Have a happy new year, everyone! And to end in true McLaughlin fashion, we say to all of you:

"Bye-bye!"

-- Chris Weigant

 

If you're interested in traveling down Memory Lane, here are all the previous years of this awards column:

2017 -- [Part 1]
2016 -- [Part 1] [Part 2]
2015 -- [Part 1] [Part 2]
2014 -- [Part 1] [Part 2]
2013 -- [Part 1] [Part 2]
2012 -- [Part 1] [Part 2]
2011 -- [Part 1] [Part 2]
2010 -- [Part 1] [Part 2]
2009 -- [Part 1] [Part 2]
2008 -- [Part 1] [Part 2]
2007 -- [Part 1] [Part 2]
2006 -- [Part 1] [Part 2]

Cross-posted at: Democratic Underground
Cross-posted at The Huffington Post

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

251 Comments on “My 2017 "McLaughlin Awards" [Part 2]”

  1. [1] 
    Paula wrote:

    Good column Chris.

  2. [2] 
    Bclancy wrote:

    Hello. It looks like Dyer is running for governor of Arizona, not New Mexico. Just wanted to let you know.

    Bridget

  3. [3] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Yikes! I hope John McCain or anyone who knows him personally doesn't read this piece.

    The fighting senator needs prayers and good wishes and positive thoughts, not predictions of an untimely death.

    I sure do hope you're wrong on this one, Chris!

  4. [4] 
    neilm wrote:

    Great article CW - thanks!

    Looking back at the link to last year's predictions I saw one that I made in the comments:

    My first wild Trump prediction that is just about crazy enough to happen:

    Trump (probably via Alex Jones) will claim the CIA hacked the DNC in a false flag operation to make him and Putin look bad. - neilm, 12/31/16

    Well I got the hackers wrong, instead of the CIA it was the DNC themselves according to the false flag conspiracy, but I was right that 45 would be dumb enough to believe it:

    CIA DIRECTOR MET ADVOCATE OF DISPUTED DNC HACK THEORY — AT TRUMP’S REQUEST

    https://theintercept.com/2017/11/07/dnc-hack-trump-cia-director-william-binney-nsa/

  5. [5] 
    Michale wrote:

    Well I got the hackers wrong, instead of the CIA it was the DNC themselves according to the false flag conspiracy, but I was right that 45 would be dumb enough to believe it:

    The mere FACT that the DNC refused to let the FBI forensically examine the server that was supposedly hacked gives credence to the theory....

    Do you have ANY facts that disproves the theory???

    Any facts at all??

    No??

    Of course ya don't.. :D

  6. [6] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    The funny thing about predictions is that sometimes the people making the predictions can influence whether or not those predictions come true.
    For example, your prediction that Democrats will pick up over 40 seats in the House and Pelosi will again be Speaker.

    While you cannot influence whether or not your prediction comes true all on your own, you can be part of influencing which kind of Democrat will be elected in 2018 by deciding whether you will be towing the Big Money party establishment line or standing up to the Big Money interests that have destroyed the credibility the Democratic Party needs to attract the voters that are fed up with the status quo of switching control back and forth between the Big Money Republicans and Big Money Democrats. (see chart on Ralph Nader petition https://www.change.org/p/ralph-nader-address-one-demand-campaign-financing-approach )

    If Democrats can demand purity/integrity on sexual harassment they can certainly demand small contribution candidates.

    So I have two predictions.

    1. You will continue to ignore One Demand throughout 2018. The Big Money Democrats will pick up some seats in the House, maybe even enough to make Pelosi speaker again.

    Democrats will rejoice in the swinging of the pendulum in their direction, once again not recognizing that it is not a pendulum- it's a noose.

    About 60% of eligible voters will not vote in 2018. The Big Money interests will rejoice that their strategy has once again proven successful.

    Nothing will change. At least not for the better. The best possible outcome is that the Big Money Democrats will minimize some of the damage.

    2. You will continue the conversation started in the comments on "GOPs Swamp Creature of a Tax Bill" by responding to my questions in comment 37.

    You will admit that if 15-20% of citizens (2016 voters) participated in One Demand in 2018 that it could work and that if it did work it would be a good thing.

    You will write an article about One Demand and my efforts to get Ralph Nader to address One Demand.

    This will get many people to sign the Nader petition and Ralph will address One Demand.

    10-15% of 2016 will participate in One Demand in the 2018 primaries. This will be a significant amount of the primary vote and will be larger than the party regulars that normally vote in the primaries in some congressional districts.

    This will encourage more citizens to participate in One Demand in the general election. There will be record turnout for an off year election. More than 60% of eligible voters will vote in 2018. Even some people that didn't vote in 2016 and haven't voted for years will vote in 2018.

    This record turnout will not only swing many seats into the Democrat column, it will put 10-50 small contribution candidates into Congress (includes the Senate) in 2018. Nancy Pelosi will be defeated by a small contribution candidate in the primaries or the general election so she will not be Speaker.

    Citizens rejoice as real change actually begins to happen.

    The new year is always a good time to consider a new approach.

  7. [7] 
    neilm wrote:

    Do you have ANY facts that disproves the theory???

    I have a theory: 45 can't read properly any longer. Footage shows the President attempting to give a simple toast in South Korea and making absolutely no sense:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=by95vEiuvA4

    Do you have ANY facts that disproves the theory???

  8. [8] 
    Michale wrote:

    Do you have ANY facts that disproves the theory???

    In other words, no you don't have any facts that disprove the theory...

    Got it. ;D

  9. [9] 
    neilm wrote:

    In other words, no you don't have any facts that disprove the theory...

    We agree. 45 can't read properly any longer.

  10. [10] 
    Michale wrote:

    November is not just a wave election for Democrats, but a downright blue tsunami. Democrats pick up over 40 seats in the House. Pelosi will be challenged by a younger Democrat for the speaker's post in the leadership vote, but will easily beat back such a challenge and will reclaim the gavel in January of 2019.

    Not unless Democrats can actually TALK to Americans who own guns, who go to church, who eat at ChikFilA, who shop at Hobby Lobby and who work at fossil fuel companies.. Yunno... Trump supporters..

    Actually TALK to those Americans instead of attacking them and ridiculing them and calling them names..

    Unless Democrats can do that, 2018 will simply be a 2016 repeat....

    THAT's my prediction....

    Considering how bad ya'all are at predicting anything to do with President Trump, I have a leg up.. :D

  11. [11] 
    Michale wrote:

    We agree. 45 can't read properly any longer.

    No.. YOU agree...

    We were talking about the DNC inside hack of their server.. A subject that YOU brought up..

    Now that I have facts to support the claim and you have none, NOW you want to change he subject.....

  12. [12] 
    Michale wrote:

    Democrats haven't been THIS confident about their chances in an upcoming election since Nov 2016....

    Think about it.....

  13. [13] 
    neilm wrote:

    So the NY Times listed 10 lies 45 told during their interview with him.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/29/us/politics/fact-check-trump-interview.html

    Obviously they are factually incorrect, but since 45 probably believes they are true, then are they really lies? Are they not just evidence of a completely ignorant man who, when he needs a 'fact' makes one up and has no shame in spouting it out.

    It makes sense to me - before 2016 he was surrounded by lackeys who had been selected over time never to contradict him, and to praise him at all times. He is just the continuation of a type of rich man (in my personal experience they have always been men) who confidently spout drivel and go unchallenged - bars in golf courses and country clubs are full of them.

    One time I heard the CEO of a large company try to impress an attractive woman by bragging about a deal he had done and how he was getting one over on the 'other side', not knowing that one of the other people listening was an employee of the 'other side' of the deal and all hell broke loose. You'd have thought this CEO would have learned from this, but several months later he was at it again.

    Another 45-like a-hole got drunk at a senior exec dinner I was attending and, at the head table no less, started telling incredible sexist jokes in front of several women. Again, no consequences, and several months later I saw a repeat performance.

    When there are no consequences for behavior, you can't expect it to be changed. Especially for somebody in their eight decade.

  14. [14] 
    neilm wrote:

    We agree. 45 can't read properly any longer.

    No.. YOU agree...

    Yes, but you have no facts that prove I'm wrong.

  15. [15] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yes, but you have no facts that prove I'm wrong.

    But I have facts that prove your subsequent comment was irrelevant and simply a dodge on how I totally demolished your argument on the DNC hacking their own server.. :D

  16. [16] 
    Michale wrote:

    So the NY Times listed 10 lies 45 told during their interview with him.

    Why didn't you care about lies when Odumbo was telling them???

  17. [17] 
    neilm wrote:

    Why didn't you care about lies when Odumbo was telling them???

    They were listed out. 18 in 8 years. One every 5-6 months. 45's recorded lies average 9 times per day.

    In two days, 45 lies as much as Obama did in 8 years.

    But you stick to the "whataboutism" as it is all you have.

  18. [18] 
    neilm wrote:

    My Haiku for the end of the year:

    It has been proven
    Trump lies nine times every day
    Ten per interview

  19. [19] 
    neilm wrote:

    Michale:

    Just summing up your posts for the year:

    https://i.imgur.com/H8dLb7E.jpg

  20. [20] 
    neilm wrote:

    ...

  21. [21] 
    neilm wrote:

    Wait for it ...

  22. [22] 
    neilm wrote:

    Wrong on every level.

    You're welcome ;)

  23. [23] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    "When there are no consequences for behavior, you can't expect it to be changed."

    Exactly.

    So if candidates take Big Money and only pretend to represent ordinary citizens and citizens keep voting for them anyway then the candidates/legislators will continue to take Big Money and represent the Big Money interests while pretending to represent ordinary citizens because the candidates do not suffer the consequence of losing the votes of the ordinary citizens.

    So if voting for the Big Money candidates won't change them and not voting won't change them (the 40-60% that don't vote depending on whether there is a presidential election or not proves not voting doesn't work), then the only option that seems to have a chance of working is registering votes against the Big Money candidates.

  24. [24] 
    Speak2 wrote:

    An honorable mention, at least, for boldest political tactic should go to Michigan's Dana Nessel who ran an ad suggesting that voters who are tired of scandals by politicians should vote for the candidate who doesn't have a penis. Dang!

    The Voter Integrity Commission shouldn't be in the Biggest Government Waste category, it should be in the Worst Idea category. After all, from the GOP point of view, it's a great idea. While it may have started with Trump's insecurity, from the GOP point of view, suppressing votes is a great use of gov't money. How else can they win?

  25. [25] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    "Is there anyone out there?"

  26. [26] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Chris,

    That should be a major media story. But it isn't. Each individual action by Trump is covered, but nobody has taken the time to weave it all together into a "big picture" story, which is why America's foreign policy decline is the Most Underreported Story of the year.

    That is so true.

    And, it's why the next POTUS should have foreign policy prowess in his wheelhouse ... :)

  27. [27] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    The next POTUS needs to be a friend of the state department ... in more ways than one!

  28. [28] 
    Michale wrote:

    In two days, 45 lies as much as Obama did in 8 years.

    So, you don't care about the lies.. Lies are perfectly acceptable to you...

    But you stick to the "whataboutism" as it is all you have.

    It would only be 'whataboutism' if I was talking about the lies..

    But I am talking about your hypocrisy, so it's not..

    But, by all means, stick with that tired lame dodge..

    It's all you got to justify your hyocrisy...

  29. [29] 
    Michale wrote:

    Wrong on every level.

    You're welcome ;)

    Yes, you have been wrong with regards to Trump on every level...

    Thank you for admitting it...

  30. [30] 
    Michale wrote:

    The next POTUS needs to be a friend of the state department ...

    The LAST POTUS was a huge friend to the State Dept..

    Look what that got us...

    North Korea with hydrogen bombs... Russia gobbling up states again...

    Odumbo's State Dept was a failure from day one....

  31. [31] 
    Michale wrote:

    It's funny...

    Ya'all with Trump sounds EXACTLY like me with Odumbo...

    Kinda makes me proud that ya'all want to be like Mike.. :D

  32. [32] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yes, you have been wrong with regards to Trump on every level...

    And what's so comical is that ya'all don't even SEE it...

    Take CW's predictions from 2017.. 3 out of 10 correct. Quite likely his worst showing ever..

    And all the wrong predictions were gloom and doom predictions about President Trump..

    In ya'all's eyes, President Trump has not done a SINGLE thing right.. In ya'all's eyes, President Trump is PERFECT at failing at each and every thing he has done...

    I would think that intelligent people such as yerselves will know that NO ONE is "perfect" in ANY way.. And yet, ya'all see "perfection" in President Trump's ability to do NOTHING right.......

    Well, any objective person would HAVE to point out that, obviously, the problem is not with President Trump..

    It's with ya'all....

    Don't believe me?? Come up with 2 things that President Trump has done that is good for the country... Just 2 things.. Betcha can't do it..

    I would ask ya'all to "think about it" but I know your PTDS will not allow you to do so...

  33. [33] 
    neilm wrote:

    ome up with 2 things that President Trump has done that is good for the country.

    Easy ...

    1. He helped elect the first Democratic Senator in Alabama in 25 years

    2. He made George W. Bush the second worst President in living memory instead of the first.

    You're welcome.

  34. [34] 
    Michale wrote:

    As widespread anti-regime protests in Iran continue on into their third day, American news audiences are starting to wonder why the US media has devoted so little coverage to such dramatic—and possibly history-making—events. Ordinary people are taking their lives in their hands to voice their outrage at the crimes of an obscurantist regime that has repressed them since 1979, and which attacks and shoots dead them in the streets. So why aren’t the protests in Iran making headlines?

    The short answer is that the American media is incapable of covering the story, because its resources and available story-lines for Iran reporting and expertise were shaped by two powerful official forces—the Islamic Republic of Iran, and the Obama White House. Without government minders providing them with story-lines and experts, American reporters are simply lost—and it shows.
    http://www.tabletmag.com/scroll/252332/why-cant-the-american-media-cover-the-protests-in-iran

    Protesters in Iran are, once again, being beaten and killed and the US Media won't cover it because it will show the American people how badly Odumbo frak'ed up..

  35. [35] 
    Michale wrote:

    Easy ...

    1. He helped elect the first Democratic Senator in Alabama in 25 years

    2. He made George W. Bush the second worst President in living memory instead of the first.

    Of course, you would go with Party slavery talking points..

    Thank you for proving my point so perfectly..

    You're welcome.

  36. [36] 
    neilm wrote:

    North Korea with hydrogen bombs.

    That one was on 45's watch (Sep 3, 2017) ... you remember, the guy that was going to be the "new sheriff in town" and everybody would behave themselves "or else".

    Instead of the rest of the World shaking in their boot from fear, they are shaking all over laughing at us, thanks to the clown show you put in the White House.

    We've gone from respect to ridicule, and every poll except those in Russia show it. Russia loves 45, and well they should, they paid for him and ran a "get out the vote" campaign to help him.

  37. [37] 
    neilm wrote:

    When repeatedly asked what 45 was actually going to do Michale, after ducking the question, you said he would respect law and order.

    How does that equate with his recent trashing of the FBI?

    I know you can't deal with this rationally because everything 45 does is perfect, but deep down you know that if Obama had done it you would be railing against him in ALL CAPS.

  38. [38] 
    neilm wrote:

    Of course, you would go with Party slavery talking points..

    You asked and thus received. Thanks for Doug Jones, and W. is positively brimming with joy:

    https://imgur.com/gallery/kLV4l

  39. [39] 
    Michale wrote:

    It nearly goes without saying that only regime-friendly Western journalists are allowed to report from Iran, which is an authoritarian police state that routinely tortures and murders its political foes. The arrest and nearly two-year detention of Washington Post reporter Jason Rezaian drove this point home to American newsrooms and editors who might not have been paying attention. The fact that Rezaian was not an entirely hostile voice who showed “the human side” of the country only made the regime’s message more terrifying and effective: We can find you guilty of anything at any time, so watch your step.

    The Post has understandably been reluctant to send someone back to Iran. But that’s hardly an excuse for virtually ignoring a story that threatens to turn the past eight years of conventional wisdom about Iran on its head. If the people who donned pink pussy hats to resist Donald Trump are one of the year’s big stories, surely people who are shot dead in the streets in Iran for resisting an actual murderous theocracy might also be deserving of a shout-out for their bravery.

    You Democrats are such a sad lot.. :^/

  40. [40] 
    Michale wrote:

    That one was on 45's watch (Sep 3, 2017) ... you remember, the guy that was going to be the "new sheriff in town" and everybody would behave themselves "or else".

    The fact that you actually BELIEVE that all of bad happened on Trump's watch and Odumbo is blameless once again, proves my point about your slavery...

    I would make more progress talking with a cucumber... :^/

  41. [41] 
    Michale wrote:

    You asked and thus received.

    I asked for a specific action that President Trump took.

    You couldn't deliver, thereby proving my point perfectly...

    You simply have your head so far up the Democrat Party's ass you can't see reality...

    All you can do is crow about 2018 in Dumbocrat Party slogans that sound EXACTLY like the slogans you used in 2016....

    Don't worry.. I'll still be around on 7 Nov 2018 to, once again, point out incessantly how completely and utterly wrong ya'all were..

    Over and over and over... :D

    It'll be a nice book-end to 9 Nov 2016, don'tcha think?? :D

  42. [42] 
    Michale wrote:

    We've gone from respect to ridicule, and every poll except those in Russia show it. Russia loves 45, and well they should, they paid for him and ran a "get out the vote" campaign to help him.

    Any facts to prove that??

    Of course not.. Ya'all NEVER have any facts.. Nothing but hysterical bullshit and Party slavery.....

    When you have FACTS that prove your case, come talk to me...

    I know I'll be waiting forever....

  43. [43] 
    neilm wrote:

    Any facts to prove that??

    Yes, read "Collusion" by Luke Harding for a complete list.

    It isn't in doubt that Russian based trolls paid our social media companies to run anti-Clinton ads. We have plenty of proof of that.

    We also know that their fake profiles have been very successful with reposts and followers, e.g. “Secured Borders” and “Beyond Patriotic” accounts, and the most popular Texas succession account, "Heart of Texas" was Russian based.

    This is all public record. They also created pro BLM accounts and posted videos of e.g. a black man with his face pushed onto concrete being bitten by a dog as an example of supposed racism.

  44. [44] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yes, read "Collusion" by Luke Harding for a complete list.

    You mean, the book that you said read like a John le Carre fiction novel?? :D

    Naw, I am reading some new Tom Clancy... Also fiction, with no hysterical politics.. :D

    It isn't in doubt that Russian based trolls paid our social media companies to run anti-Clinton ads. We have plenty of proof of that.

    Any facts to support the claim that it changed a single solitary Hillary vote to a Trump vote??

    No?? Of course not...

    This is all public record. They also created pro BLM accounts and posted videos of e.g. a black man with his face pushed onto concrete being bitten by a dog as an example of supposed racism.

    So???

    Where are the FACTS that prove it had ANYTHING to do with Trump's win??

    You have NO FACTS.. and you can't even CONCEDE you have no facts that prove anything....

    You act EXACTLY like those brain dead morons on the Right who claimed Odumbo was an islamic Manchurian Candidate...

    And the fact that you can't even SEE that you're acting that way is sad...

  45. [45] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yes, read "Collusion" by Luke Harding for a complete list.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MHzOOMdhAhE

  46. [46] 
    Michale wrote:

    Luke Harding/John Le Carre is simply telling you what you want to hear...

    That and THAT alone is why buy into his BS...

  47. [47] 
    neilm wrote:

    That and THAT alone is why buy into his BS...

    Have you read the book? Just answer yes or no. (Bet you won't.)

  48. [48] 
    neilm wrote:

    You have NO FACTS.. and you can't even CONCEDE you have no facts that prove anything....

    No facts, sure. Flynn pled guilty yet there were no facts, he just felt bad about 45 being such a useless President and so he committed an act of penance.

    45 and his family can barely walk their butt cheeks are so pressed together, but they know there can be "no facts" because they are completely innocent.

    There are plenty of facts, you just can't handle the facts.

  49. [49] 
    Michale wrote:

    Of course it’s difficult to understand what’s happening in Iran now—the Obama White House and the press sidelined anyone who was not on board with the president’s main political goal. To sell the public on the Iran Deal, the Obama administration promoted hack “reporters” and “experts” who would peddle its fairy-tale story-lines, while setting social media mobs on whoever was brave or stupid or naïve or well-informed enough to cast doubt on its cock-eyed picture of Iran—including independent reporters like David Sanger of the Times, as well as the president’s entire first-term foreign policy cabinet.

    The current coverage of the protests sweeping across Iran is bad by design. The Obama administration used the press to mislead the American public in order to win the president’s signature foreign policy initiative. The bill for that program of systematic misinformation is still coming in, and the price is much higher than anyone could have imagined, including more than 500,000 dead in Syria and an American press incapable of understanding, never mind reporting, that this death toll was part of Obama’s quid pro quo for the nuclear deal.

    And what was gained? America enriched and strengthened a soon-to-be nuclear regime that murders its neighbors abroad while torturing, oppressing, and impoverishing its own citizens. Whether the current wave of protests is successful or not, they show that the Iranian people are heartily sick of the regime that Obama and his servants spent eight years of his Presidency praising and propping up.

  50. [50] 
    neilm wrote:

    Employment growth has dropped in 45's first year in office. So much for the best jobs creator ever. He can't even keep up with Obama's last year in office, let alone Obama's most successful year in office.

    Fact: 45's first year monthly average (170,000) is worse than all of the last six years of Obama's Presidency. Only 2009 and 2010 were worse as we were digging out of the Bush 2 recession.

    Source: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/dec/31/donald-trump-jobs-analysis#img-2

    What a loser.

  51. [51] 
    Michale wrote:

    Flynn pled guilty yet there were no facts,

    I would have thought you would understand that RELEVANT facts are the requirement..

    I didn't think I would need to specify...

    "The Party Slavery is strong with this one"

    There are plenty of facts, you just can't handle the facts.

    Plenty of RELEVANT facts that prove your claim??

    By all means.. Let's see 'em...

    {{{{ccchhhhiiirrrrrppppppp}}}} {{ccchhhhhhiirrrrrrrpppppp}}

    Yea.. That's what I thought...

  52. [52] 
    Michale wrote:

    Have you read the book? Just answer yes or no. (Bet you won't.)

    I don't have to.. If you say that the book PROVES that Trump colluded with Russia, then the book HAS to be bullshit because no such proof exists...

    If such proof DID exist, we would be reading it from the MSM who has a 95% negative Trump publication rate...

    Since we're NOT reading the proof, no such proof exists..

    In this case, absence of evidence *IS* evidence of absence....

  53. [53] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    Paul Ryan knows what is about to happen to the GOP once Trump is charged and they lose both houses in 2018. He wants to be as far away from that sinkhole as possible so that he can pop back up in ten/twenty years and make a run for the White House. The only way he can do that is to disappear from DC ASAP and hope that he is far enough away not to get burnt to cinders when the GOP implodes.

    The other Republican trying to separate himself from the GOP’s image is Rubio. His sudden change of heart towards how the tax plan screws the middle and lower class families in this country is going to be too little, too late to keep him from being lumped in with the rest of the GOP when it hits the fan!

    I thought Ted Cruz would be trying to show a “nicer” side to conservatism, but I am not sure he is capable of performing such a major transformation.

  54. [54] 
    Michale wrote:

    Face reality, Neil..

    You lost.. You backed the ONLY candidate on the face of the planet that could LOSE to Donald Trump..

    I know that's embarrassing for you, but this lashing out is very counter-productive and a detriment to your mental health..

    There will be no nullification of this legal, fair and free election...

    You won't be allowed to use hysterical rumors and outright BS to illegally remove President Trump from office..

    The ONLY time you are going to be successful in removing Trump from office is on 20 Jan 2024...

    This is the reality...

    You need to accept it..

  55. [55] 
    neilm wrote:

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/dec/31/donald-trump-jobs-analysis

    This whole article is worth reading. The key change is the concentration of job creation in smaller and smaller areas:

    1990s: Half of the jobs created were in 125 counties.
    2010-2014: Half of the jobs created were in only 5 metropolitan areas.

    The unrest in the counties which have not seen job growth was the protest that put 45 into the White House. With a slowdown in job growth, and no policies to address the job growth concentration from the current administration, it is likely that the protesters will feel betrayed by Washington again, and again protest against those in power.

    So not only is the blue voter based enraged and raring to go to the polls, the protest vote will either abandon (at best) or turn against the new establishment.

  56. [56] 
    Michale wrote:

    Russ,

    Paul Ryan knows what is about to happen to the GOP once Trump is charged and they lose both houses in 2018.

    CW must have loaned you his time machine because you are thinking it's Oct of 2016... :D

    Com'on people.. At least TRY and come up with some new bullshit.. This is regurgitated 2016 crap is so old it has flies...

    You guys are getting boring.. :D

  57. [57] 
    Michale wrote:

    So not only is the blue voter based enraged and raring to go to the polls

    Yaaaawwwwwwnnnnnnnnnnn

    2016 all over again....

  58. [58] 
    neilm wrote:

    If you say that the book PROVES that Trump colluded with Russia,

    So you haven't read the book but are an expert on it and know it can't be accurate.

    Also, nice try, but that isn't what I said.

    I said that there is proof that Russian based entities created very successful social media accounts and paid to promote their posts to influence opinion in the 2016 election.

    You can't handle that so you change the subject.

    Read the book if you want the evidence, or read the MSM that also presents these facts. Read about Paul Manafort's activities and money trail - it is all over the reliable news agencies (maybe not on Fox News however, so you might not have seen it).

  59. [59] 
    neilm wrote:

    So not only is the blue voter based enraged and raring to go to the polls

    Yaaaawwwwwwnnnnnnnnnnn

    2016 all over again....

    You have no idea what it is like in happy valley Michale. Politics, which was taboo in the past, even in the led up to the 2016 election, is now the major subject of discussion. The disgust with the current White House is rampant, and universal. People are more angry than I've ever seen them in happy valley, and they can't wait to vote in November.

    Your bubble is probably smug and complacent (we won, na-na-na - sound familiar?), but happy valley feels that the real America, the America of respect, honesty, decency, education, facts, and acceptance of others is threatened and they intend to do something about it.

    In my 28 years in the U.S. this is the most riled up I've seen happy valley.

  60. [60] 
    Michale wrote:

    I said that there is proof that Russian based entities created very successful social media accounts and paid to promote their posts to influence opinion in the 2016 election.

    You have no FACTS to prove they were successful....

    THAT is the point you keep ignoring...

    Read the book if you want the evidence, or read the MSM that also presents these facts.

    The MSM has already proven beyond ANY doubt that it has no credibility when it comes to reporting on President Trump..

    This is fact...

    You only cite them because they say EXACTLY what you want to hear...

    In my 28 years in the U.S. this is the most riled up I've seen happy valley.

    No.. They were just as riled up in 2016....

    And we know what happened then..

    This is exactly your problem..

    Ya'all think it's politics as usual... Ya'all think that the same thing that has failed over and over and over again will SUCCEED this time...

    You will be proven wrong... AGAIN..

    And yet, ya'all won't believe it.. Ya'all will blame phantom Russians or non-existent sexism again...

    Ya'all simply cannot accept the reality that the "deplorables" are striking back.. And politics will never be the same again...

  61. [61] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    The mere FACT that the DNC refused to let the FBI forensically examine the server that was supposedly hacked gives credence to the theory....

    Do you have ANY facts that disproves the theory???

    The fact that someone believes that the FBI would need to physically examine the server in order to conduct a forensic examination of the system just means that they have absolutely NO idea how servers work! The FBI stated that they were given everything they needed to conduct their investigation when the DNC gave them a complete image of their servers. No needs to prove your theory is wrong as you cannot prove that it is correct!

  62. [62] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    The mere FACT that the DNC refused to let the FBI forensically examine the server that was supposedly hacked gives credence to the theory....

    Do you have ANY facts that disproves the theory???

    The fact that someone believes that the FBI would need to physically examine the server in order to conduct a forensic examination of the system just means that they have absolutely NO idea how servers work! The FBI stated that they were given everything they needed to conduct their investigation when the DNC gave them a complete image of their servers. No needs to prove your theory is wrong as you cannot prove that it is correct!

  63. [63] 
    Michale wrote:

    So you haven't read the book but are an expert on it and know it can't be accurate.

    If you were to tell me about a book that states that aliens have landed and provided all the "evidence" that "proves" this, I wouldn't have to read the book to know that it's bullshit...

    You believe the book *SOLELY* because it's what you want to hear.. What your Party Slavery DEMANDS that you hear...

    That is all there is too it...

  64. [64] 
    neilm wrote:

    I'm not telling you that there are aliens in the book. I'm saying that the book lists the evidence collected so far, and has references where you can check their sources.

    You've decided that you know all the evidence presented and can refute every single source, so you don't need to even read it.

    Who is in denial here?

    I'm not asking you to accept the conclusions Harding draws from the evidence, and frankly I'm waiting for Mueller to give us his conclusions, but it is telling that you can't even read a list of the public facts we know to date without retreating into your bubble.

    Squeaky bum time for Michale and the 45s.

  65. [65] 
    neilm wrote:

    What will really scare you when you read "Collusion" isn't the facts pertaining to the alleged collusion, but the facts about the money trail.

    All along I've said that the Russians were probably too smart to trust 45 or his family with anything secret or clandestine. In fact even the Russians were stunned that Kushner wanted to set up a secret line of communication with the Kremlin - they know that these things are almost impossible to keep hidden for any length of time, and wondered if they were being played by the CIA.

    I also have said all along that the real problem 45 has is the money trail. Russian money laundering activities are all over 45's business dealings. He might not have broken any laws, but given the scope and flexibility of AML (Anti Money Laundering) laws, he has good reason to get concerned when he hears that Mueller is collecting records from Deutsche Bank and Cyprus based entities.

  66. [66] 
    Michale wrote:

    I'm not telling you that there are aliens in the book. I'm saying that the book lists the evidence collected so far, and has references where you can check their sources.

    And, according to you, all of that "PROVES" that Trump colluded with the Russians to win the election..

    If THAT is the conclusion you draw from the book, then I know the book is bullshit...

    Just like if you draw a conclusion from a book that aliens are definitely and factually among us, I know that THAT book is bullshit...

    I don't need to read it because reality speaks for itself..

    The credibility of you hysterical Never Trumpers is non existent because YOU HAVE ALWAYS BEEN WRONG when it comes to President Trump..

    No credibility = bullshit claims..

    I can't make it any simpler than that...

  67. [67] 
    Michale wrote:

    In fact even the Russians were stunned that Kushner wanted to set up a secret line of communication with the Kremlin

    Facts to support???

    No????

    You see, this is EXACTLY your problem..

    You spew a bunch of hysterical anti-Trump BS and have absolutely NO FACTS to support your claim...

  68. [68] 
    Michale wrote:

    Iran warns protesters will 'pay the price' as unrest turns deadly
    https://www.yahoo.com/news/iran-warns-protesters-pay-price-unrest-turn-deadly-073258455.html

    The citizens of Iran thank you, Hussein Odumbo... :^/

  69. [69] 
    Michale wrote:

    He might not have broken any laws,

    So you concede that President Trump might have not broken any laws...

    OK... That's progress.... Congrats, Neil.. You may not be a Party slave after all...

    Back pedal retraction in 3.... 2..... 1......

  70. [70] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz Peek: What Trump DIDN'T do in 2017: President's hysteria-prone critics must be sorely disappointed

    It is also important to note what Trump didn’t do: he didn’t start World War III, he didn’t deport 11 million people in the country illegally, he didn’t eliminate guarantees of equal status for women, he did not toss the Iran nuclear deal, he did not fire Special Counsel Mueller or Attorney General Sessions, he didn’t cause the stock market to crash or upend our monetary policy, he failed to greenlight Putin’s mischief-making in Eastern Europe, he hasn’t reinstated the use of torture, and also hasn’t ignited a trade war. And, he didn’t plunge the country into recession.
    http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2017/12/31/liz-peek-what-trump-didnt-do-in-2017-presidents-hysteria-prone-critics-must-be-sorely-disappointed.html

    Once again..

    WRONG.. WRONG.... WRONG....

    Ya'all have been SPECTACULARLY and HYSTERICALLY WRONG about President Trump...

    But do you concede this moronic and hysterical stoopidity???

    Of course not.. Ya'all double down on it...

    It's going to be a fun 7 more years.. :D

  71. [71] 
    Michale wrote:

    Hay, I have an idea!!

    Let's revisit ya'all's General Kelly predictions..

    Wouldn't that be a hoot!! :D

  72. [72] 
    Michale wrote:

    Neil, what's my count at?? :D

  73. [73] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    neilm appears to be doing his best to transport himself into an imaginary future because he finds the present totally unbearable.

    It's understandable that the Dems/Libs are in shock so deeply that they are desperate to create a new and less painful reality, even if it has to exist only in their fevered imaginations.

  74. [74] 
    neilm wrote:

    neilm appears to be doing his best to transport himself into an imaginary future because he finds the present totally unbearable.

    All I'm saying is that there is a Democratic wave building and if it continues the smugness on the right will disappear, and that there is a lot of facts that Michale refuses to even read about are in the public and that Mueller probably has more, so we should be patient.

    Michale keeps asking for "facts" and when I point him to a book full of them he refuses to read it. This I take as fear (i.e. squeaky bum time) on his part of what has already been discovered.

    I'm having a great time, eating the popcorn and watching the show. 45's regime is decaying and getting more desperate, and the Republicans are having a civil war between the Bannon and the establishment camps.

    This is good news for Democrats, who represent the science-based part of our populace at the moment because the Democrats, who routinely snatch defeat from the jaws of victory are tamping down their own civil wars thanks to the passion of their disgust at 45 and his minions (one of 45's greatest achievements in 2017 - who knew you could get the Democratic Party to stop infighting for 10 minutes, let alone an election cycle?).

    So 2018 looks to be an interesting year. 45 will have a horrible time. The comedians are going full blast on the left (I haven't seen a funny right wing comedian - any recommendations CRS or Michale?). The Republicans can't even pass a tax cut without making it just about the least popular tax proposal in recent history, including tax raises!

    Pass the popcorn, 2018 is coming!

  75. [75] 
    TheStig wrote:

    Worst Political Theater

    "Um... that gargoyle Disney just unveiled in their animatronic "Hall Of Presidents" that is supposed to be Trump?"

    Trump with just one chin and a healthy body mass index? I guess they don't call it "The Magic Kingdom" for nothing. Like all Disney audio-animatronic critters, TrumpDroid is a cautionary example of the "uncanny valley." A creepy rendering evoking early stage parkinsonism meets xanax.

    Prediction: At some point a Disney Imagineer is going to retire. He/She will substitute audio portions of the Access Hollywood Tape for the current speech.

  76. [76] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    neilm

    Sorry,can't recommend any right-wing comedians, not sure there actually are any, but if you have that pretend French guy of late-night TV in mind as one of the "going-full-blasters", you must be desperate for a laugh. Since Leno and Letterman left, I (and much of their audience) have given up on late-night.

  77. [77] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Americans should be worried about where President Trump is leading them.

    The president's words and actions to date, aside from any connections between his campaign and Russia, are quite enough to deem him unsuitable for the job.

  78. [78] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    i'm pretty sure dennis miller is right wing, though i'm unaware of him doing any shows recently.

  79. [79] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Liz

    Anybody who had even the slightest exposure to Trump knew he was unsuitable for the job before he ever entered the primary race!

    The import of that fact is that it's YOU (Dems/Libs) who are responsible for him being where he is (and we being where we are), because YOU FOLKS chose the only person in the U.S. who was incapable of defeating him to run against him!!!

    How's that for a guilt trip?

  80. [80] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    So, you don't believe in personal responsibility, then.

    Your comments here are as divisive as the language of President Trump.

    I just don't understand why it is necessary to be that way ...

  81. [81] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Liz

    Sorry, don't follow. I have no personal responsibility here. I voted Libertarian (seem to recall name was Anderson), and I don't see the 'divisiveness' either. We definitely are divided on many topics, but why is that my doing? All I'm doing is pointing out where we differ, I'm not creating the differences, right?

  82. [82] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    It will come to you on the bus home. :)

  83. [83] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    All I'm doing is pointing out where we differ, I'm not creating the differences, right?

    Yes, that is all you are doing. It's always the same refrain, over and over again - the old us versus them, you vs we, etc. etc. - ad nauseam.

    It would be better for the sake of the integrity of this blog if there were much less of that kind of simple and repetitive divisiveness and more of the cogent kind of discourse that can make a blog like this fun to be part of ...

  84. [84] 
    Paula wrote:

    Stucki embodies modern conservatives most' fundamental principle: nothing they do is their fault, none of the harm they cause is their fault, everything bad that happens is someone else's fault -- they especially like to pin blame on the poorest and most powerless. When the nazi pushes the lever to gas the Jews in the gas chamber, it's the fault of those who didn't manage t stop him.

    Stucki and the rightwing spigot are just variations on that theme.

  85. [85] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Paula

    OK, if I'm the root of all evil, drop the sweeping generalities and give me at least one specific. How IS Trump my fault if I never advocated for him and never voted for him???

    What harm have I caused attempting (without any success) to educate you two on how the real world of economics actually functions???

    What "bad" has happened that IS my fault, or that I even contributed to???

    The "poorest and most powerless" that I pinned the blame (on other threads) on is the BANKERS, right?? When I say the insanity that brought on the financial crisis was "the loaning of mortgage money to poor people", that is NOT blaming the poor people for gawdsake! You think I was claiming that the poor people loaned the money to themselves??? Give me a break!

    You two tenderhearts need to toughen up a little to be in the politics blogging business.

  86. [86] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Stucki,

    Is it possible to discuss anything without finding fault or apportioning blame?

  87. [87] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Liz

    Fair question, but if the "anything" is a disaster, the answer is probably no. How can you meaningfully discuss a disaster, with the objective of fixing it or at least preventing it from happening again, without discussing the who/how/why of it happening??? Sitting around and singing Kumbayah just doesn't cut it.

    That does NOT require nor imply belligerence, animosity, etc, but you two are far to quick to perceive imagined animosity and to take offense.

  88. [88] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Disaster?

    I was thinking more along the lines of, you know, issues ...

  89. [89] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    OK, which WAS the financial crisis/meltdown a disaster or an issue? Couldn't it be both?

  90. [90] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    That does NOT require nor imply belligerence, animosity, etc, but you two are far to quick to perceive imagined animosity and to take offense.

    I resemble that remark.

  91. [91] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    What is your purpose in discussing the financial crisis that occurred a decade ago?

    Good God, has it really been that far removed already!?

  92. [92] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Couldn't it be both?

    Yes, of course.

    And, there was quite a lot of blame and finding fault to go around, as I recall ...

    The Dodd-Frank legislation should go a long way toward mitigating another similar crisis, if its provisions are not weakened.

  93. [93] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Sitting around and singing Kumbayah just doesn't cut it.

    I'm pretty sure that has never happened here in the past and there is even less of a chance of it ever happening here in the future.

    Which, to be clear, is a good thing.

  94. [94] 
    neilm wrote:

    My View of the State of Political Comedy, FWIW.

    Colbert's monologue can't be much fun for the right wing. Or the work of John Oliver, Samantha Bee, Jim Jefferies, or Seth Meyer.

    Frankly I find them very amusing. My friends who listened to Rush Limbaugh used to tell me they though he was funny many years ago, but I never got it - it just seemed puerile, bitchy, and whiny.

    I listened to a very good podcast on right wing comedy a couple of weeks ago ... Cracked's "Why Conservative Comedy Is Almost Impossible in Trump Times". The premise was that right wing comedy is of the "Beevis and Butthead" genre on 4chan, etc. where the young are rebelling against the constraints of political correctness by being over the top and find it funny when people get upset with them. It might almost be performance art getting the KKK to march with Tiki Torches (until a evil little moron killed somebody with his car).

    Frankly I found Milo Yiannopoulos's interview with Bill Maher amazingly funny - as I said in February, I think he is playing everybody - a screamingly gay half Brit/half Greek immigrant, wearing multiple strings of pearls (that he clutches no less!) attacking everything he knows the left will get angry about. Bloody genius! I hope he turns out to be another Andy Kaufman, it would be such a shame if he just wants to cash in on the dull witted like an intelligent version of Ann Coulter.

    http://www.chrisweigant.com/2017/02/17/ftp425/#comment-95080

  95. [95] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    "What is your purpose in discussing the financial crisis that occurred a decade ago?"

    Good point. If history is any indicator we should be more worried about the one that is coming soon.

    "You ain't seen nothin' yet."
    -Al Jolson

  96. [96] 
    neilm wrote:

    Good point. If history is any indicator we should be more worried about the one that is coming soon.

    I used to study risk management in a LOT of detail, and there is a theory that the more risk control you add to a system, the greater the disaster that will befall it when things eventually go pear shaped.

    Risk management, like probability, has a lot of very counter-intuitive aspects - I learned a lot from a trader on Wall Street that used to show me how completely wrong looking trading strategies delivered better outcomes than common sense strategies. He wrote a book and gave me a copy, but it seems to have gotten lost - it is probably in a box in the garage somewhere. If I find it I'll give you the title and the author.

    Net net, you are right Don, we are overdue for a fairly large correction, so I'm going to make a statement now that Michale can refer to when I have fun gloating at 45 if he is still in power - it probably isn't going to be completely 45's fault - he will find some way to make things worse of course, that is his only ability, however if the Republicans let him do something catastrophic, such as start a trade war, I'm blaming the House and/or Senate leadership - you don't let children play with matches, and you don't let dotards make economic policy.

  97. [97] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    Trump claims he did not collude with the Russians.

    Trump claims that he believes Putin when he pinky swears that Russia did not interfere in our elections.

    Trump claims that the Democrats and Hillary collided with Russia.

    Why isn’t the press pointing out how Trump is now accusing Putin of being a liar? Was Trump lying about Hillary being guilty of collusion or lying when he said Putin was innocent of interfering, because both cannot be true!

  98. [98] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    Should be “colluded”, not “collided”.

    -Russ

  99. [99] 
    neilm wrote:

    Why isn’t the press pointing out how Trump is now accusing Putin of being a liar?

    He lies, on average, nine times per day. I presume he is just trying to completely overwhelm the ability to expect anything of decency and honesty from the White House.

  100. [100] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Russ,

    Collided was better. :)

  101. [101] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    What harm have I caused attempting (without any success) to educate you two on how the real world of economics actually functions???

    for one, conflating the real world and economics.

    disciples of both the keynes and friedman schools frequently make that error, which can lead in the latter case to jargon-laced justification for harmful levels of regressive taxation.

    for example, productivity in economics has a technical meaning that friedmanites frequently trot out as if it meant the same thing as the lay version of the term. in a market economy capital is "productive" simply by being somewhere other than under your mattress, but that does not necessarily mean that the people who possess it are themselves "producing" anything of value to society, much less anything that would justify said people being taxed at a lower percentage than those who have less.

    JL

  102. [102] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Happy New Year, everyone.

  103. [103] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    That's interesting. A traditional holiday wish for joy upon the change of date caught in the filter?

    Or I somehow failed to post it properly.
    Hope that's the case.

    Certainly don't need a war on (rhymes with 'blue beers')!

    So everyone: Live Long and Prosper.

  104. [104] 
    Michale wrote:

    CRS,

    neilm appears to be doing his best to transport himself into an imaginary future because he finds the present totally unbearable.

    It's understandable that the Dems/Libs are in shock so deeply that they are desperate to create a new and less painful reality, even if it has to exist only in their fevered imaginations.

    Interesting theory..

    Especially when ya consider that he and most other Weigantians like to transport themselves back in time to Sep-Oct of 2016.....

    You may be on to something here.. :D

  105. [105] 
    Michale wrote:

    All I'm saying is that there is a Democratic wave building and if it continues the smugness on the right will disappear,

    Yes, but here's the thing..

    Ya'all said the EXACT same thing in Sep-Oct of 2016....

    And ya'all were wrong then.. VERY wrong.. EPIC'LY wrong...

    So, why would ya'all think such claims have any credibility now???

    I would REALLY like to see an answer to that question..

    Michale keeps asking for "facts" and when I point him to a book full of them he refuses to read it.

    A book on ALIENS AMONG US also is a book full of "facts"....

    But if you draw the conclusion that aliens ARE among us and it's a "fact" from that book, then the book HAS to be bullshit because it's NOT a fact that aliens are among us...

    It's NOT a fact that Trump colluded with the Russians to win the election. You are on record as stating that it's unlikely to be proven that Trump did collude with the Russians...

    A book of irrelevant facts and innuendo and outright bullshit does not a case make.

    Give me some FACTS that PROVE Trump colluded with the Russians. You say this book is chockful ofFACTS that prove it??? Fine..

    List some of them...

    Pass the popcorn, 2018 is coming!

    Pass The Popcorn, 2016 Is Coming!!!
    Weigantians, Sep-Oct 2016

    Yep.. Ya'all had the identical claim.. :D

    But *THIS* time ya'all will be right, right?? :D

    You guys crack me up... :D

  106. [106] 
    Michale wrote:

    The import of that fact is that it's YOU (Dems/Libs) who are responsible for him being where he is (and we being where we are), because YOU FOLKS chose the only person in the U.S. who was incapable of defeating him to run against him!!!

    How's that for a guilt trip?

    Allow me to point out that Liz, personally, had absolutely no responsibility in that, as she is not an American citizen.. A fact for which I am sure she is eternally grateful, I am sure.. :D

    Having said that, your claim is DEAD on ballz accurate..

    The Dumbocrats chose the ONE candidate on the entire face of the planet that could LOSE to Donald Trump..

    BUT!!!! Russia!!!! Sexism!!! But!! But!!!!

    Yea, yea, yea....

    But why was the election so close that those alleged occurrences would allegedly have some alleged effect???

    Because you Dumbocrats chose the *ONLY* person on the entire planet that could LOSE to Donald Trump...

    "These are the facts of the case.. And they are undisputed."
    -Captain Smilin' Jack Ross, A FEW GOOD MEN

  107. [107] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz,

    Your comments here are as divisive as the language of President Trump.

    As are ya'all's...

    That's the fact that ya'all simply can't see...

    Ya'all are acting 9 times worse than the Right acted under Obama...

    "NIIINE TIMES!!"
    Principal Rooney, FERRIS BEUHLER'S DAY OFF

    I would think that THAT fact would bother ya'all...

    Yes, that is all you are doing. It's always the same refrain, over and over again - the old us versus them, you vs we, etc. etc. - ad nauseam.

    And ya'all's refrain on President Trump is any different??

    Ya'all's 'us vs them' is any different??

    You are complaining about the EXACT SAME THING that ya'all do on a daily basis!!

    Where is the logic in that???

    Is it possible to discuss anything without finding fault or apportioning blame?

    You tell me? Ya'all blame Trump for EVERYTHING...

    Can you discuss President Trump without finding fault or apportioning blame??

    The problem here is that ya'all blame anyone who thinks differently than ya'all for all the problems here...

    Me.... Stucki.... Don.... Everything bad here is our fault, SOLELY because we disagree with what you people say...

    Have you ever thought that it's ya'all that are wrong???

    Does that occur to ya'all at all???

    I am betting it doesn't...

    Even though it's a STONE COLD FACT that ya'all have been wrong... WRONG... EPIC'LY WRONG in the past, ya'all simply CANNOT acknowledge that ya'all might be wrong yet again...

    And THAT's where the conflict comes in..

    Ya'all are right and everyone who disagrees with ya'all is "evil incarnate", is worse than Hitler pushing the lever on the gas chambers.... as Paula put it...

    Seriously, Liz.. THAT kind of over the top hysterical and senseless (TRULY SENSELESS) comment and yet, *WE"RE* the problem here???

    "Shirley, you can't be serious.."

  108. [108] 
    Michale wrote:

    Ho ho ho...

    What have we hear...

    Hillary Clinton backer paid $500G to fund women accusing Trump of sexual misconduct before Election Day, report says

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/31/us/politics/sexual-harassment-politics-partisanship.html

    You people HONESTLY believe that the Trump accusers have ANY credibility???

    I think that is so cute....

  109. [109] 
    Michale wrote:

    Ms. Allred’s daughter, the lawyer Lisa Bloom, seized on the political potency of sexual harassment charges against Mr. Trump not long after he clinched the Republican presidential nomination. She said she reached out to a pro-Clinton “super PAC” — though she declined to identify which one — for money to help her vet a sexual misconduct claim against Mr. Trump.

    That case collapsed one week before Election Day, but as a result of the attention it generated, several donors reached out to Ms. Bloom “asking how they could help,” she said. She told them that she was working with “a few other women” who might “find the courage to speak out” against Mr. Trump if the donors would provide funds for security, relocation and possibly a “safe house.”

    In other words, the "courage to speak out" needs a few millions dollars to manifest itself..

    So, money and politics.. THAT is what is motivating President Trump's accusers..

    Color me shocked.... :^/

  110. [110] 
    Michale wrote:

    The Dumbocrats chose the ONE candidate on the entire face of the planet that could LOSE to Donald Trump..

    BUT!!!! Russia!!!! Sexism!!! But!! But!!!!

    Yea, yea, yea....

    But why was the election so close that those alleged occurrences would allegedly have some alleged effect???

    Let me ask ya'all something...

    Let's assume, for the sake of the argument, that the Russians actually influenced the election.. Let's further assume that sexism was rampant and also affected the election...

    How is it that Russian influence and rampant sexism DIDN'T affect the Vanity Vote???

    How is it possible that Russia and Sexism worked hand in hand and *ONLY* affected the EC results???

    Answer: It's not possible

    Ya'all are swatting at phantom flies, DESPERATE to be able to blame ya'all's loss on ANYTHING but where it belongs..

    Ya'all chose a shitty candidate..

    That's the *ONLY* reason we have President Trump..

  111. [111] 
    Michale wrote:

    In other words, the "courage to speak out" needs a few millions dollars to manifest itself..

    So, money and politics.. THAT is what is motivating President Trump's accusers..

    One of Trump's accusers wanted 2 million dollars to come forward..

    Yea.. President Trump's accuser's are just BRIMMING with credibility..

  112. [112] 
    Michale wrote:

    A fact for which I am sure she is eternally grateful, I am sure.. :D

    "In the dictionary under 'redundant' it says 'see redundant'..."
    -Robin Williams, LIVE AT THE MET

    :D

  113. [113] 
    Michale wrote:

    President Trump's approval rating on RCP is 40%...

    I am certain I will read ALL about that here.. I am sure, since everyone commented about President Trump's 37% rate, that they will be honest and show integrity and congratulate President Trump for his rise in his approval rating...

    {{ccchhiiirrrrrppppp}} {{chhiiirrrrrpppppp}}

    Yea, that's what I thought..

    If ya can't cherry pick yer polls, you don't want to talk about polls... :^/

  114. [114] 
    Michale wrote:

    A Year in Trump-Russia Hysteria
    What the country can learn from ‘Z’ and ‘Seven Days in May.’

    Not all writers on the left succumbed to Trump-Russia panic in 2017. January saw Masha Gessen in the New York Review of Books dissecting the “muddled thinking” behind the U.S. intelligence community’s published analysis of Russia’s role in the election.

    Glenn Greenwald, hand-holder of Edward Snowden, has spent the year cataloging at TheIntercept.com the “extraordinarily numerous, consequential, and reckless stories that have been published—and then corrected, rescinded, and retracted” by the mainstream media.

    Distinguished Rutgers historian Jackson Lears, in a year-end essay in the London Review of Books, laments his Democratic Party’s intoxication with Trump-Russia conspiracies. The episode, he writes, is “like no other formation of mass opinion in my adult life, though it recalls a few dim childhood memories of anticommunist hysteria during the early 1950s.”

    Few and far between are lapses into sanity by sources Americans actually read. Ms. Gessen herself points to a rare example in the New York Times last March, on the subject of Trump-Russia contacts:

    “There have been courtesy calls, policy discussions and business contacts, though nothing has emerged publicly indicating anything more sinister. . . . Former diplomats and Russia specialists say it would have been absurd and contrary to American interests for the Trump team to avoid meetings with Russians, either during or since the campaign.”
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/a-year-in-trump-russia-hysteria-1514586201?shareToken=st41784a7487414fa8a179b08946caea97&reflink=article_email_share

    Ya'all hysterical NeverTrumpers simply don't get it..

    By concentrating on the Trump/Russia vaporware, ya'all are pushing more and more people to vote Trump's GOP in the 2018 elections...

    The ONLY message that Democrats have is a hysterical NeverTrump message...

    One would think Democrats would have learned their lesson after the 2016 nuclear shellacking....

    But Democrats are epitomizing the very definition of insanity..

    Trying the same thing over and over, hoping for a different result..

  115. [115] 
    Michale wrote:

    Trump Ends 2017 Residing In His Enemies’ Heads

    As 2017 comes to a close, tumbleweeds roll down the empty Lido Deck while the Republican base answers the question, “What if Conservative, Inc., gave a cruise and nobody came?” The Democrats fled Washington under cover of darkness, desperate to keep their slobbering socialist wing from forcing them to commit ritual suicide by closing down the government over Christmas because the GOP Congress (for now) won’t hand a couple million illegal aliens citizenship. Robert Mueller’s Keystone Kop Korps started off with “unquestioned integrity” and ended the year with totally questioned integrity. The mainstream media abandoned the principle of objectivity in favor of shrill advocacy, yet it is baffled that most Americans now consider its members like just another bunch of partisan hacks.

    In the White House, where everyone who was anyone told us Felonia Milhous von Pantsuit would reign, President Donald Trump finished the year by signing a tax reform bill that punished conservatives’ enemies and rewarded their friends. The Democrats get to go tell their base of blue state coastal swells, “Uh, sorry about losing those state tax deductions cuz we were too busy resisting to actually negotiate and thereby get a seat at the table.” Cue the Sad Trombone. Trump plays for keeps, unlike the squish-cons who play for media hugs and invitations to the kool kidz’ parties.

    He was supposed to lose the primary, but he didn’t. He was supposed to lose the general, but he didn’t. He was supposed to fall victim to the covert schemes of leftist bureaucrats and the overt obstruction of The Resistance, but he didn’t. Instead, Donald Trump has prospered as the most conservative president since Ronald Reagan. And it’s breaking the souls of his enemies. Deliciously.

    The elite keeps losing to the guy they tell us is dumb. The elite keeps losing to the guy they tell us is a clown. The elite keeps losing to the guy who doesn’t meet their bottom line standard to be worthy of governing – being one of the elite. So, what’s that make the elite?

    He just refuses to lose. He just refuses to submit. He just refuses to give a damn about what they say or what they think. And that infuriates them. He won’t take a knee, but he will offer them a finger.

    Brick by brick, he is disassembling the rickety edifice of Barack Obama’s transformed America. Regulations? Slashed, even as the screams of the professional expert class echo across the District of Columbia. ISIS? Dead, with our military unleashed to hunt down our enemies without hesitation or mercy. The Courts? Packed, not with squishy wimps ready to bend to the will of the WaPo and the Georgetown cocktail crew but with true conservatives determined to fight for the Constitution.

    Trump’s enemies are getting tired of all the winning.
    https://townhall.com/columnists/kurtschlichter/2017/12/28/trump-ends-2017-residing-in-his-enemies-heads-n2427402

    :D

    President Trump....

    Making America Great Again

  116. [116] 
    Michale wrote:

    This one's for you, Neil...

    Their impeachment fever dreams are fading, so they look at popularity polls and take solace at the numbers. They took solace in them on November 8, 2016, too. It’s a bit over 10 months to the midterms, and there is a growing, gnawing fear in their guts not that tax reform will be a disaster but that it will succeed. They look at their swelling 401(k)s and mourn their prosperity.

    Howz you're investments doing, Neil?? :D I bet you and your family are much better off than ya'all would have been under Crooked Hillary, right???

    I won't speak for you, but I know that myself and my family are MUCH better off under President Trump. And for that, SOLELY and COMPLETELY and UNEQUIVOCALLY for that, he has my complete and utter support...

    But, then again, I am not a PARTY UBER ALLES kinda guy...

  117. [117] 
    Michale wrote:

    Democrats’ year of living angrily

    Some 1.5 million Americans will see the New Year behind bars, so it’s hardly a travesty of justice that Katherine Rogers, a 62-year-old first-time offender from New Hampshire, got probation last week for misdemeanor assault.

    On the other hand, Rogers certainly knows the law: She’s a former local prosecutor and six-term Democratic member of the state legislature. Adding to the incongruity, earlier in 2017 she was named “Humane Legislator of the Year” for her efforts at curbing cruelty to animals.

    Rogers’ empathy doesn’t extend all the way to conservatives, however. During a recount after the 2016 election, she was sitting next to a Republican observer named Susan Olsen, a conservative activist known for her staunch support for the Second Amendment. When Olsen asked if the ballots could be moved closer, Rogers punched her in the head.

    Olsen believes Rogers was trying to provoke a physical response, to discredit the gun rights movement and disrupt the recount. Judge Kristin Spath wasn’t so sure. She seemed to think Rogers just lost it. Spath accepted a guilty plea, but sentenced the defendant to probation, provided she abides by the law for a year and attends anger management classes in the next 90 days.

    What could be a better symbol of the year in politics than Democrats lashing out in blind anger over how events unfolded electorally in 2017? It began before Donald Trump’s inauguration, and continued unabated for 12 months.
    https://www.ocregister.com/2017/12/30/democrats-year-of-living-angrily/

    Violence.. hatred... intolerance....

    That's ya'all's Democrat Party....

    Congrats... Ya'all have become the monsters ya'all accuse the GOP of being..

    Don't ya'all feel so proud.. :^/

    This simply proves what I have been saying for over a decade here...

    There is no difference between Democrats and Republicans..

  118. [118] 
    Michale wrote:

    Deep Freeze Ends a Dreadful 2017 for Climate Activists

    But the climate propagandists can’t quite get their spin together. Is the deep freeze just weather, or is it due to climate change?

    The always-charming Chelsea Handler called Trump a “dumbass” and claimed “global warming doesn’t only mean extreme heat; it means extreme weather. Hot and cold.” One climate scientist quoted in USA Today said the frigidity proves climate change is real: “We can still expect periods of very cold temperatures, snowstorms, and even days of record low temperatures,” the University of California’s Zack Labe told the paper. “However, climate change continues to shift the odds towards more periods of warmer weather and less so for colder weather.” Huh?

    The Environmental Defense Fund offered its explainer on how record snowfall is evidence of global warming. “It may seem counterintuitive, but more snowfall during winter storms is an expected outcome of climate change. That’s because a warmer planet is evaporating more water into the atmosphere. That added moisture means more precipitation in the form of heavy snowfall or downpours.”

    Talk about covering all your bases. EDF also took the common route of climate propagandists: don’t believe your lying eyes. It only feels colder. “Winters in the U.S. have warmed a lot since the 1970s—making what used to be a typical winter feel even more frigid nowadays.” Just remember that when your eyelids are frozen shut next week.

    This mess of unscientific, emotional rants by the climate change crowd is typical of how it responds to any challenge to its dogma: Detractors are belittled, goal posts are moved, reversals on previous views are accepted without question. The scientifically-illiterate media plays along, rarely stopping to examine evidence or challenge glaring hypocrisies.

    There is also a chance this cold snap portends a global cooling period that some scientists now predict. If that happens, we might all be huddled near the furnace, wondering why we ever feared global warming in the first place.
    https://amgreatness.com/2017/12/30/deep-freeze-ends-a-dreadful-2017-for-climate-activists/

    That's what's so ridiculous about the hysterical Humans Cause Global Warming morons..

    They say there is a difference between weather and climate and yet, when a single weather event manifests itself, all of the sudden weather and climate is interchangeable..

    For these hysterical nutjobs, EVERYTHING is global warming..

    They are like the religious fanatics who always spout off that, no matter WHAT happens, it's "god's will"...

    For them, EVERYTHING that has the slimmest climatological connection is "global warming".....

    They are going to have a lot of egg on their faces when global cooling sets in... :D

  119. [119] 
    Michale wrote:

    It's been a while since we have had a Michale's Monday Media Roundup... :D

    Hope ya'all enjoyed it as much as I enjoyed bringing it to you.. :D

  120. [120] 
    Michale wrote:

    Hollywood tries to save the Earth, but moviegoers aren’t buying eco-messages anymore

    Is there a connection among the flops, or is Hollywood circa 2017 more unpredictable than ever?

    Justin Haskins, executive editor at the right-leaning, free-market Heartland Institute, said Hollywood insiders remain fixated on saving the planet.

    “They believe climate change will bring people to the movies,” Mr. Haskins said. “That’s wildly out of touch with how moviegoers feel about the issue.”

    A Pew Research survey this year found that “the environment” does not rank among the top 10 public policy concerns of most Americans, trailing behind “terrorism,” “the economy,” “education” and “jobs,” among others.

    Mr. Haskins said it wasn’t always this way. Hits such as “An Inconvenient Truth” and “The Day After Tomorrow,” the 2004 film that dove directly into climate change fears, touched a nerve. The box office receipts proved it. “Tomorrow” hauled in $186 million despite tepid reviews.

    At the time, audiences were genuinely scared about what climate change could mean to the planet, he said. Time passed, though, and many of the frightening predictions made by Mr. Gore and like-minded activists didn’t come to fruition.

    “They stopped believing the problem was as serious as what Al Gore was saying,” Mr. Haskins said.
    https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/dec/28/global-warming-films-flop-box-office-2017/

    The con has been exposed...

    Rational people don't buy the hysterical hype any more...

  121. [121] 
    Michale wrote:

    “Hollywood is finding out that the climate scare continues to be nothing more than a big yawn for the public,” Mr. Morano said. “Lecturing the public on climate change is boring, and ticket receipts prove this.”

  122. [122] 
    Michale wrote:

    Iran state TV: 12 killed in protests, attacks on security
    https://apnews.com/a53371dc213c4f7ab6841ee30dea0197/Iran-state-TV:-12-killed-in-protests,-attacks-on-security

    The silence from the Leftist MSM and our own Iran Boosters here is deafening...

  123. [123] 
    neilm wrote:

    Howz you're investments doing, Neil?? :D I bet you and your family are much better off than ya'all would have been under Crooked Hillary, right???

    Who knows - the world doesn't work like that. Most of the money I made in 2017 was in international and emerging markets - so nothing to do with the White House.

    Employment growth is slowing, but the capital markets are meant to get a sugar high from the lower corporate tax rates. Interest rates are rising, but Europe is picking up speed.

    The markets are on a roll, but there are a lot of signs of speculative investment (e.g. Bitcoin).

    One thing I learned from Barry Ritholtz is that predicting anything is a fools game. Nobody knows nothing. If somebody really could predict the future they'd keep it to themselves and profit from it.

    Anybody with a basic grasp of science and math can look at the price of e.g. cars, look for changes in the forcing factors and conclude that inflation played a significant role. The basic F-150 that cost $1,287 in 1950 costs $28,130 today. It isn't like you could strip away all the new features and get today's equivalent (e.g. no airbags) for the 1950 price.

    Anybody with a basic grasp of science and math can look at the climate data from 1950 and see there is a rise in global temperatures, and then look for changes in the forcing factors and conclude greenhouse gases played a significant role.

    These things are simple, but can only be clearly seen over time. A Ford Dealership could have a winter sale and the price could drop, but do you think that means that all the inflation since 1950 is going to magically disappear and F-150s are going to cost $1,500 again?

  124. [124] 
    neilm wrote:
  125. [125] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    neilm

    Inflation is an interesting subject. I'm the only layman in the entire world who understands it (joke, but only barely) and it's even misunderstood by most professional economists, including ALL Dem/Lib economists the likes of Krugman.

    If you look up the word in my 50 plus yr-old "Webster's New Collegiate", you'll find something to the effect of "An unjustified increase in the money supply, normally leading to higher prices". But if you consult a contemporary dictionary, you'll find "An increase in the level of retail prices" - over the course of two generations, the effect has become the phenomenon itself, causing mass understanding of what it is and more importantly, how to deal with it.

    Further complicating the situation is the fact that prices can increase for various legitimate non-monetary-related reasons (basically, plain old interplay of supply/demand).

    Inflation in the form of expansion of the money supply is nothing more nor less than a form of taxation. It would be 100% theoretically possible to operate the fed. gov't with no conventional taxation whatsoever, simply by printing new money. And unfortunately, that appeals to the three dominant factions who play the major role in deciding how to finance the gov't (those being Dems, Libs and politicians), because it is a seriously "progressive" (greatest burden falling on the rich) form of taxation.

    Re "anybody . . can look at climate data . . and see there is a rise in global temperatures . . ."

    I seriously question the legitimacy of global temp. date from 1950. We didn't have the ability to measure the earth's temp in 1950, and I'm not even convinced that we do now. But regardless, geology tells us that global temp. changes have been a regular thing for its entire history, they are not a new phenomenon. What do you think caused "global warming" the millions of times it happened before humans appeared on the scene? Maybe dinosaur farts back in that time, but they've been gone for quite a while???

  126. [126] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Michale makes an interesting point about global warming. It seems that global warming is the most versatile phenomenon anybody ever heard of. Global warming causes warming, cooling, floods, droughts, hurricanes, feasts, famines, rising prices, falling prices, baldness, AIDS, and sexual disfunction. In fact there is absolutely NOTHING BAD, and only a little good, that is not being blamed on "global warming".

    Dems/Libs and all other alarmists have found their holy grail in "global warming"!!

  127. [127] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    C.R. Stucki,

    Re. [125]

    Climate change is a serious challenge affecting all life on planet earth.

    Asinine comments like [125] have no place on a reality-based political blog.

    If climate change is too complicated an issue, then perhaps a move toward clean, renewable energy and away from fossil fuels may be an easier topic to discuss.

  128. [128] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    C.R. Stucki,

    I seriously question the legitimacy of global temp. date from 1950. We didn't have the ability to measure the earth's temp in 1950, and I'm not even convinced that we do now. But regardless, geology tells us that global temp. changes have been a regular thing for its entire history, they are not a new phenomenon. What do you think caused "global warming" the millions of times it happened before humans appeared on the scene?

    There are serious problems with this comment but a couple of them need to be addressed.

    First, you are correct to say that climate change is nothing new. The key here, however, is the accelerated rate of climate change due to human activity.

    Second, humans are "on the scene" now and therefore the impacts of an accelerated rate of climate change does very negatively impact human life in a variety of ways. If we don't get serious about mitigating these impacts we will all face the consequences - consequences that we can see are already happening across the globe.

  129. [129] 
    Paula wrote:

    Nice rundown on Blotus' guilt: http://www.boomantribune.com/story/2017/12/29/174237/62

    Let’s start with the essential point that hacking into the computer systems of the DNC and the DCCC are crimes. Using a phishing attack to steal John Podesta’s email password is a crime. Seeking to gain access stolen goods makes you an accessory to the crime and perhaps also a co-conspirator or conspirator after the fact. I’ll leave it to lawyers and prosecutors to define the exact statutes that might be implicated, but if what the Russians did was criminal, and it was, then what Trump’s team was doing was also criminal.

    We don’t need to establish that any particular outcome was changed by this behavior. I’ve never met anyone who thinks that George McGovern would have won the 1972 presidential election, if only the Nixon administration hadn’t bugged a couple of phones in the DNC’s Watergate headquarters.

  130. [130] 
    Paula wrote:
  131. [131] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Paula

    I think your characterization of knowledge of the fact that John Podesta, Donna Brazille, and all the behind-the-scenes Dem power brokers were conspiring to keep Bernie Sanders from winning the Dem nomination as "stolen goods" is somewhere between weird and crazy.

    I'm 100% certain that all the Democratics who mattered already knew it, and the Republicans didn't give a damn. Only morons would believe that Bernie's backers, the furthest left of the whole Dem party, would actually vote for Trump just because their first-choice guy got cheated.

  132. [132] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Paula

    BTW, are you certain hacking is illegal? Thousands, probably tens of thousands of people, businesses, corporations, etc get hacked every single day and I can't recall EVER hearing about anybody being prosecuted for it.

  133. [133] 
    Paula wrote:

    [130] Your repeating of the canards about the DNC is interesting.

    [131] And now you proffer a "is it really illegal" statement, skipping right over the question of "is it right or wrong?" Do you think Blotus using hacked info. -- hacked by Putin-tools -- to try to damage his political opponent, is acceptable?

  134. [134] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    yes, hacking is illegal under the computer fraud and abuse act (CFAA)

    JL

  135. [135] 
    Paula wrote:

    [133]: Yep!

  136. [136] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Paula

    We gotta live in the world of reality here. Honest/dishonest, fair/unfair, right/wrong, do you think there is a single politician ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD who's not going to take advantage of getting dirt on his opponent???

    Poet

    So howcum nobody's ever prosecuted?

  137. [137] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    I think your characterization of knowledge of the fact that John Podesta, Donna Brazille, and all the behind-the-scenes Dem power brokers were conspiring to keep Bernie Sanders from winning the Dem nomination as "stolen goods" is somewhere between weird and crazy.

    That's a total mischaracterization. Donna Brazile wasn't brought in until after Bernie lost the nomination. Podesta worked for Hillary's campaign, so of course he was 'conspiring' to defeat Bernie. That was his job.

    And of course the hacked emails were stolen goods.
    Sheesh! Even Nixon didn't try to pretend that wiretapping wasn't illegal, although he did try to say later that "if the President does it, it isn't a crime", which, as we saw, didn't get him very far, did it?

  138. [138] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Turns out Wikipedia has a page devoted to "Computer Criminals", including hackers.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_computer_criminals

    So much for that argument.

  139. [139] 
    John M wrote:

    C.R. Stucki,

    'I seriously question the legitimacy of global temp. date from 1950. We didn't have the ability to measure the earth's temp in 1950, and I'm not even convinced that we do now. But regardless, geology tells us that global temp. changes have been a regular thing for its entire history, they are not a new phenomenon. What do you think caused "global warming" the millions of times it happened before humans appeared on the scene?"

    I have several problems with this statement too.

    1.) We do have the ability to measure global temperature. There are hundreds to thousands of weather stations around the world, both on the ground and on buoys at sea, that can measure both ground, sea surface, and air temperature in real time. There are also satellites that do the same thing from orbit by measuring thermal radiation emitted from the Earth at various points.

    2.) Temperature can also be calculated from various sources in the past by techniques used today that don't have to rely on measurements take in the past at the time that they happened. Things like the size of tree growth rings, and the chemical composition of layers of ice taken from core samples, as well as even noting the type and number of preserved microscopic organisms that they contain, are all highly dependent on the temperature at the time that they were created.

    3.) As Elizabeth also said, no one disputes that the climate has changed even when man was not around. But we have proof that in all of geologic history that we can measure, it has never changed as fast in as short a time as it is now doing. If all other factors are eliminated other than the appearance of Mankind the effect of his global industrial society upon the Earth, then what else is left? As Sherlock Holmes said: "When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth?"

  140. [140] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Balthazar

    You're making my point yourself. If it was taken for granted, and everybody already knew, what was stolen???

    And "goods"??? Maybe 'info', maybe 'intelligence', maybe 'dirt', but "GOODS"???

  141. [141] 
    John M wrote:

    [125] C. R. Stucki

    "Michale makes an interesting point about global warming. It seems that global warming is the most versatile phenomenon anybody ever heard of. Global warming causes warming, cooling, floods, droughts, hurricanes, feasts, famines, rising prices, falling prices..."

    Perhaps, like you keep telling us about economics, it is just too complicated a subject for you to understand.

    You need to have a scientific grasp about the phenomenon of variability that happens when going from one state of equilibrium to another.

    Global warming (Climate change), for instance, causes the jet stream which controls the weather ( weather, not climate, two separate things that are hard to grasp) to wander from the place it normally is all the time to a new location, until it finds a new balance where it will stay. While it wanders or meanders, it causes some places to be much colder or hotter, wetter or dryer, temporarily, leading to floods, droughts, etc.

    You start out with the Earth before global warming. Shake it up like a snow globe. Everything goes all chaotic. While chaos is going on, some places get more snow, some get none. After everything all settles back down, after the shaking of global warming is over with, you have a new baseline that is higher than what you originally started out with.

    Trump recently said that North America, the east coast of the USA, is really cold right now, therefore Global warming is a hoax. What he did not tell you, was at the very same time, all the rest of the world right now is much warmer than what they historically are. That's one of the consequences of a wandering jet stream.

    Right now, North America is cold, so is Greenland and West Central Australia. But at the same time, South America, Europe, Africa, all of Asia, Eastern Australia, and the polar regions, are all hotter than they should be.

  142. [142] 
    John M wrote:

    Look at it another way. You're a patient. Your body temperature is normally 98 degrees. That is what you are used to. Your overall temperature rises to 104. (Global warming) Suddenly while your forehead may be hot, the rest of your body may feel cold, and you get the chills and the shakes (Local weather). Even though the real temperature of your body as a whole has risen from 98 to 104. That's because your body is trying to find a new balance, adjust to the higher overall temperature and is going through changes in equilibrium while it is doing so.

  143. [143] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    John M

    Yeah we skeptics are reminded endlessly that 'climate' and 'weather' are totally separate and distinct. But isn't weather how climate manifests itself? How can you claim no connection. And the jetstream is a notorious wanderer. Wandering jetstream is hardly a new phenomenon. And make that polar REGION (singular). Only one is "hotter", the other is actually colder.

  144. [144] 
    John M wrote:

    [142] C. R. Stucki

    "Yeah we skeptics are reminded endlessly that 'climate' and 'weather' are totally separate and distinct. But isn't weather how climate manifests itself? How can you claim no connection. And the jetstream is a notorious wanderer. Wandering jetstream is hardly a new phenomenon. And make that polar REGION (singular). Only one is "hotter", the other is actually colder."

    I never claimed no connection. I am saying that you are misreading the connection. You say the weather is colder in this one spot, therefore climate change is not real. I am saying, the weather is colder in this spot or those two spots, and hotter in all the others, because of climate change. Climate change, increasing in the temperature of the Earth as a whole, causes the weather to be even more variable locally than it would be, until Earth finds a new balance.

    Again, yes the jet streams wanders. It always has. But again you are missing the point, that it wanders now more deeply and frequently than it ever has before.

    Where two thousand years ago the jet stream might wander by 1,000 miles every 6 months, now it wanders by 2,000 miles every 3 months. Something it has never done before. See the difference?

  145. [145] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    If it was taken for granted, and everybody already knew, what was stolen?

    Aw, cmon, you're just trying to jerk some chains, that's all, you're not that dense.

    The question is, can Mueller find evidence that Trump knew that his friend Stone was in touch with the hacker (Guccifer), and with the distributor (Assange), receiving specific information regarding the timing of malicious leaks (as he demonstrated re: Podesta). Did he know that dozens of meetings were being held with Russians by members of his top staff and family, and that quid pro quos like the lifting of the Magnitsky sanctions were being discussed at those meetings?

    Is Trump a disconnected, in-over-his-head, delusional man-child, or a key player in an international conspiracy to advance Russian interests? That's the question.

  146. [146] 
    Paula wrote:

    [135] Total dodge. Or else you are saying it's peachy keen for politicians to steal their opponents personal and campaign info for smearing purposes. Doesn't matter that it's against the law, nor that it's just sleezy and dishonest, because it's "reality".

    IOW, you won't say it's wrong coz your guys are guilty of it, or you don't think it's wrong at all.

  147. [147] 
    John M wrote:

    As for the Antarctic, it turns out that natural geographic boundaries have so far over ridden the effect of rising global temperatures due to global warming in the Antarctic for now.

    In the Arctic you have sea ice, totally floating on water and surrounded by land.

    In the Antarctic, you have just the opposite. Almost all the ice is on land totally surrounded by water. The powerful ocean current that completely surrounds Antarctica keeps warmer water from reaching its shores. While at the same time, Global warming increase snow fall on the land. So, you get something counter intuitive, the ice in Antarctica grows with global warming for now, instead of diminishing.

  148. [148] 
    Paula wrote:

    [144] Balthasar: In addition, I think we'll be learning that it ain't just Trump who knew about nefarious Russian activity on Trump's behalf, but a host of upper-level Republicans as well. RNC involvement looking more and more likely.

  149. [149] 
    John M wrote:

    Michale can laugh all he wants to about Global warming, but that does not make him and everyone else who thinks like him correct. In fact just the opposite. He and the rest will have to learn the hard way, unfortunately for the rest of us. That's what results from Americans putting down real scientific education.

  150. [150] 
    Paula wrote:

    [148] John M: Yep.

  151. [151] 
    neilm wrote:

    CRS [124]

    As to the definition of inflation, it is basically the 'the rate at which the general level of prices for goods and services is rising' in common usage. Inflating the money supply is a far less common use of the term in my experience. Whatever.

    As to supply/demand, that is also a forcing factor in prices, and you will note that I didn't attribute all of the cost increases in the F-150 (or equivalent - as it has been pointed out to me by by neighbor who owns a Ford Dealership that it was an F-1 in 1950, the F-150 was only introduced in 1984, I'm informed) to inflation. Safety regulations, such as air bags, increased the costs. Emission regulations also increased prices. Mass production helped lower unit costs, etc.

    However, if you add all the costs together and exclude inflation you don't get the increase in price from 1950 to 2018.

    In the same way, using reliable temperature data and including all of the forcing factors that have acted on climate for time immemorial, including CO2 forcing, the rapid increase in CO2 concentrations is the simple explanation for the increase in temperature recorded over the decades since 1950.

    This is all simple science and math. The temperature record is measured by many different techniques that independently support each other. It takes willful ignorance and determined adherence to ideology to ignore the current climate change anomalies. Of course I don't expect to change your mind, you have invested too much of your ego in 'being right' (an ego which you display frequently when you tell us all how only you can understand things that experts, some with Nobel Prizes, get wrong, and how stupid other commentators on this board are).

    You've taken on the job of protecting large fossil fuel companies in their quest to suppress climate science, my only question is why? Do you work for one? Do you hate Al Gore? Do you really think 150+ years of science across multiple disciplines is actually wrong, and if so what are the models you use to overturn simple science such as the warming effect of the Sun, the heat trapping impact of CO2, or Milankovitch Cycles?

  152. [152] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    [147]RNC involvement looking more and more likely.

    Hi Paula! Yep. Someone told the Russian trolls and bots where to focus their efforts, because their propaganda was often narrowly targeted (according to testimony by Facebook execs) to specific locales. The RNC had all the data from the primaries to share, and the best database. Smells like a fit.

  153. [153] 
    neilm wrote:

    That's what results from Americans putting down real scientific education.

    Science can be a real problem for the establishment.

    Evolution is a headache for the Religious establishment.

    Global Warming is an existential crisis for the Fossil Fuel establishment.

    Lung Cancer is a problem for the Tobacco establishment, gun violence statistics are a disaster for the Arms establishment.

    What does the establishment do when faced with something that they don't like? They try to create a false reality where the problem doesn't exist, and buy politicians to support this false reality, with snowballs on the Senate floor, if that is what it takes!

    The establishment can only pull this off with poorly informed sheep who are given tidy little stories to make it easy for them (all Libs/Dems are dumb, so anything they support must be wrong, and everybody hates Al Gore and Hillary anyway).

    This is why they fear education - independent thinkers are the biggest problem any establishment faces. We used to be a nation that celebrated individual thinkers, but the money establishment coupled up with the persuasion establishment and the political establishment and independent thinkers are the enemy to be vilified and eliminated.

    CRS seems just an unwitting foot soldier. Michale is exercising his personal insecurity demons with gloating to make him feel better.

    The forces of progression are not guaranteed to win, but we've had a good run for 400 years and I'm not counting our cause out yet, particularly when the leader of the anti-progressive causes is such a weak-minded perpetual liar.

    Get out the popcorn and watch decency and reason steamroll slowly over petty fear of the future. It isn't always going to be forward steps, but ask yourself these questions:

    1. 50 years ago, would you have thought we'd already have had two full terms from a black President?

    2. 40 years ago would you have thought that Marijuana would be legal in much of the U.S.?

    3. 30 years ago would you have thought that Communism would have been confined to small pockets of humanity, and that even China and Russia would have dumped it (either explicitly or, in the case of China, de facto)?

    4. 20 years ago would you have predicted that gay marriage would be the law of the land via the SCOTUS?

    5. 10 years ago would you have predicted that Apple would be the #1 company in the World closing in on a $1T valuation?

  154. [154] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Everybody

    Despite anything you all may have inferred, I am NOT a global-warming denier.

    For well over 60 of my well over 80 yrs, I have been an avid gardener. During that time, I have personally witnessed global warming. 50 - 60 yrs ago, where I live (40 Deg N latitude, 4500 ft elev.), people would not normally plant tender crops before the 3rd wk of May, and the first frost nearly always arrived between 9-1 and 9-10.

    Nothing much has changed for the spring, still 3rd wk of May, and my apricot blossoms always have and still do freeze 4 yrs out of 5, but our first frost has moved into early Oct, which gives me an extra 3 wks of vine-ripened tomatoes, something that does not upset me in the slightest.

    We're arid to semi-arid (avg. 12 - 15 in. annual precip, almost all as snow) which has not changed in 60 plus yrs. We did occasionally go below zero for a few days mid-winter up until about 20 yrs ago, but almost never do lately.

    That is the extent of global warming for me and my neighbors, and if you think I'm about to happily quit heating my home with natural gas or fueling my car with petroleum distillate in order to not have to suffer through those extra 3 wks of vine-ripened tomatoes, you're all out of your phuqueing minds. I LOVE global warming!

  155. [155] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    So howcum nobody's ever prosecuted?

    many cyber-criminals are caught and prosecuted for their crimes. if what you meant to ask was why so many get away with their crimes, it's probably because many of the criminals are able to commit their crimes remotely from foreign countries or masked addresses, outside the ability of authorities to investigate or extradite.

    JL

  156. [156] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    neilm

    It was an unexpected disappointment to me that you didn't seem to have a grasp of the technical aspects of financial derivatives and their effect on the 'great recession', but your response to our discussion of the true nature of inflation and its relation to expansion of the money supply pretty much causes me to write you off as anything other than a run-of-the mill Dem/Lib blogger. (Not that that's a bad thing, but I had higher hopes, there being so DAMN few people with even a basic grasp of the laws and principles of economics.)

  157. [157] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Poet

    Yeah, I went to the link somebody posted and saw the list of the "many caught and prosecuted". As I recall, it was 4 or 5, some of 'em kids!!

  158. [158] 
    neilm wrote:

    technical aspects of financial derivatives

    What technical aspects don't I grasp?

  159. [159] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    I challenged to to describe the specifics of the infamous CDS's, and you pretty much blew it off.

  160. [160] 
    neilm wrote:

    'I seriously question the legitimacy of global temp. date from 1950. We didn't have the ability to measure the earth's temp in 1950, and I'm not even convinced that we do now. But regardless, geology tells us that global temp. changes have been a regular thing for its entire history, they are not a new phenomenon. What do you think caused "global warming" the millions of times it happened before humans appeared on the scene?" - CRS 09:46, today

    Despite anything you all may have inferred, I am NOT a global-warming denier. - CRS 16:09 today

    Let's just lay this to rest. Yes/no answers only please - we will get into explanations later if needed:

    1. Do you accept that temperatures have been warming over the last 50 years?

    2. Do you accept that CO2 concentrations have been rising over the last 50 years?

    3. Do you accept that, with the exception of the increase in CO2 levels, all other forcing factors combined do not explain the rise in temperatures we have witnessed?

    4. Do you accept that therefore the strongest driver of the current incidence of global warming is the increase in CO2 concentrations?

    5. Do you accept that human activity has been the major factor driving the increase in CO2 concentrations?

    6. Do you accept that human activity has been the major cause of global warming over the last 50 years?

  161. [161] 
    neilm wrote:

    I challenged to to describe the specifics of the infamous CDS's, and you pretty much blew it off.

    So an unwillingness to educate you is proof of lack of understanding?

    Go read some books if you want educated - these are pretty complex instruments and I'm not spending 30 minutes of typing explaining basic terms and concepts like tranches, leverage, risk pooling, etc.

  162. [162] 
    neilm wrote:

    Here is a good link that explains the global crisis:

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/stevedenning/2011/11/22/5086/#4e83bcbf92f1

    I presented at the Yale Club with Barry Ritholz in 2009 and we talked about risk and pricing as well as some of the issues raised in his book "Bailout Nation". The book is worth reading and so are his Washington Post articles that are mentioned in the Forbes article.

  163. [163] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    neilm

    CDS's are not the least bit complex, and "concepts like tranches,leverage and risk pooling" are not even necessary to explain the basics.

    [159] 1. yes, and far longer. 2. yes 3. I've no way to know that. 4., 5., and 6. see 3.

  164. [164] 
    neilm wrote:

    "[159] 1. yes, and far longer. 2. yes 3. I've no way to know that. 4., 5., and 6. see 3.

    Yup, your a denier. You're the "nobody can really know" denier. Seen them. Bored.

    Oddly enough, when it comes to other things, they tend to be experts who rely on "proven" theories only they clearly understand, and that even Nobel Prize winners in their own field and expertise are wrong.

    The Dunning-Krugers runs strong in this one.

  165. [165] 
    neilm wrote:

    CDS's are not the least bit complex, and "concepts like tranches,leverage and risk pooling" are not even necessary to explain the basics.

    - CRS today, 18:10 PST

    Have you so quickly forgotten:

    "Can you actually define what a CDS actually is?" - CRS 12/29

    "Still waiting!" - CRS 12/29 (No impatience here, eh?)

    Oh for Pete's sake, I worked with the software that valued the damn things. They are a simple vehicle to transfer risk. - Neil 12/twenty-fucking-nine!

    You, so far, haven't explained anything. You are either too aloof and just cast us all as the ignorant great unwashed who are beneath you:

    For those whose only knowledge of the financial crisis comes from fellow Dems/Libs who themselves are totally ignorant of everything about it beyond the fact that all bankers are greedy Rep bastards, or who got it from watching "The Big Short", I'd heartily recommend that you forget the movie and read the actual book.

    Get over yourself.

  166. [166] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    neilm

    Re your [159] no.1

    Interestingly enough, the glaciers in Glacier Nat'l park for instance, have been receding slowly ever since the first white men saw them going on 200 yrs ago, FAR earlier than the burning of fossil fuels in modern quantities could possible account for.

  167. [167] 
    neilm wrote:

    CRS [165]:

    Oddly enough I had a nice lunch. Well, so much for World hunger.

  168. [168] 
    TheStig wrote:

    CRS-165.

    Source? Who was doing longitudinal surveys 200 yrs ago?

  169. [169] 
    neilm wrote:

    Source? Who was doing longitudinal surveys 200 yrs ago?

    Most of the sources state that the decline began in 1910 and recently the losses have started accelerating:

    "Farge said glaciers started to shrink from around 1910 and then entered “rapid and continual” melting from the 1970s onwards. The environmental conditions now experienced in the region are a marked departure from historical norms."

    Source: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/may/11/us-glacier-national-park-is-losing-its-glaciers-with-just-26-of-150-left

    The point is that this is one data point. These glaciers exist south of Paris, for Pete's sake, as do the Alpine glaciers. They are data points that are not particularly conclusive in any direction, however they tend to lean towards the global warming theory - at least far more than any denier theory I've seen.

  170. [170] 
    Michale wrote:

    Neil,

    Who knows - the world doesn't work like that. Most of the money I made in 2017 was in international and emerging markets - so nothing to do with the White House.

    Really??

    And yet, ya'all claimed that President Trump would destroy the WORLD economy??

    But now that yer international investments are doing well, NOW you claim that President Trump has "nothing to do" with it..

    Do you see how your PTDS is manifesting itself?? :D

  171. [171] 
    Michale wrote:

    Michale makes an interesting point about global warming.

    Thank you.. :D It happens every now and again.. :D

    It seems that global warming is the most versatile phenomenon anybody ever heard of. Global warming causes warming, cooling, floods, droughts, hurricanes, feasts, famines, rising prices, falling prices, baldness, AIDS, and sexual disfunction. In fact there is absolutely NOTHING BAD, and only a little good, that is not being blamed on "global warming".

    "I know, right!??"
    -Felix, WRECK IT RALPH

    Yep.. It's AMAZING that ANYTHING can be blamed on Global Warming..

    Just like ANYTHING can be blamed on "God's Will"...

    Watch this:

    "Hurricane Irma. It's Global Warming"
    -Humans Cause Global Warming Fanatic

    "Hurricane Irma. It's God's Will"
    -Religious Fanatic

    You see how similar... how EERILY similar.. those two are??

    "Fascinating"
    -Spock

  172. [172] 
    Michale wrote:

    Liz

    Climate change is a serious challenge affecting all life on planet earth.

    You DO know that the planet's climate was changing even when there weren't humans around, right???

    What caused the climate to change then???

    Asinine comments like [125] have no place on a reality-based political blog.

    TRANSLATION: TOE THE FRAKIN' LINE OR SHUT THE FRAK UP!!!

    If climate change is too complicated an issue, then perhaps a move toward clean, renewable energy and away from fossil fuels may be an easier topic to discuss.

    Fine.. When the technology gets to the point where wide-spread deployment is possible and can feasibly and economically replace fossil fuels, then we can discuss the topic..

    Until such time, discussion of that JETSONS technology has no place in a reality-based forum..

    ppppppppffffffffffffffffffffffttttttttttttttttttt :D

  173. [173] 
    Michale wrote:

    Neil,

    Re "anybody . . can look at climate data . . and see there is a rise in global temperatures . . ."

    Yea, but ONLY after the temps were adjusted and tweaked to show that rise...

    Real science is adjusting to theory to fit the data..

    Humans Cause Global Warming fanatics adjust the data to fit the theory...

    That's not science.. That politics...

  174. [174] 
    Michale wrote:

    CRS,

    What do you think caused "global warming" the millions of times it happened before humans appeared on the scene? Maybe dinosaur farts back in that time, but they've been gone for quite a while???

    And THAT's the question they cannot answer..

    Because the answer PROVES the utter lack of credibility of their pet theory...

    The planet has warmed considerably over the course of 4 billion years caused by a variety of factors..

    But NOW.... NOW it *HAS* to be humans that are causing the warming...

    Their Humans Cause Global Warming religion demands blind obedience...

  175. [175] 
    Michale wrote:

    If we don't get serious about mitigating these impacts we will all face the consequences - consequences that we can see are already happening across the globe.

    Yea!! The polar ice caps will melt!!

    Oh wait.. No, that hasn't happened..

    But!!! But!!! Polar bears will die off!!!!

    Darn!! Polar bear populations are flourishing..

    OH!! OH!!!! Killamanjaro will lose it's snow cap!!!!

    Crap!!! THAT hasn't happened either!!!

    WAIT!!!! Snow will be virtually non-existent that children won't know what snow is!!!!

    DAMN!!! That's bullshit too...

    Well, gee whiz... What prediction HAS come true!!!???

    Oh, that's right... Scammers and liars have made BILLIONS of dollars off the Humans Cause Global Warming scaremongering..

    So, there is that....

  176. [176] 
    Michale wrote:

    yes, hacking is illegal under the computer fraud and abuse act (CFAA)

    And yet, there is absolutely NO FACTS that prove hacking occurred...

    Funny how that is, eh?? I mean, according to ya'all it was so blatant and obvious, yet there is not a SINGLE fact that proves it..

    "I just find that really funny... But ya'all ain't laughin..."
    -Will Smith, MEN IN BLACK

  177. [177] 
    Michale wrote:

    3.) As Elizabeth also said, no one disputes that the climate has changed even when man was not around. But we have proof that in all of geologic history that we can measure, it has never changed as fast in as short a time as it is now doing.

    Ok, then quit saying that humans are causing climate change...

    It makes you sound like a damn fool...

  178. [178] 
    Michale wrote:

    In the Antarctic, you have just the opposite. Almost all the ice is on land totally surrounded by water. The powerful ocean current that completely surrounds Antarctica keeps warmer water from reaching its shores. While at the same time, Global warming increase snow fall on the land. So, you get something counter intuitive, the ice in Antarctica grows with global warming for now, instead of diminishing.

    In other words....

    "If you ever see anything doesn't make sense or contradicts an earlier event.... A wizard did it.."
    -Lucy Lawless, THE SIMPSONS

  179. [179] 
    Michale wrote:

    That is the extent of global warming for me and my neighbors, and if you think I'm about to happily quit heating my home with natural gas or fueling my car with petroleum distillate in order to not have to suffer through those extra 3 wks of vine-ripened tomatoes, you're all out of your phuqueing minds. I LOVE global warming!

    Yep.. The hystericals ignore all the POSITIVE effects of Global Warming, of which there are MANY, because only the scaremongering puts money in the con artists pockets..

  180. [180] 
    Michale wrote:

    JM,

    Michale can laugh all he wants to about Global warming,

    And I laugh a LOT because ya'all are so damn hysterical about it.. :D

    but that does not make him and everyone else who thinks like him correct.

    It doesn't make us wrong either..

    In fact just the opposite. He and the rest will have to learn the hard way, unfortunately for the rest of us.

    And the FACT that the hysterical Humans Cause Global Warming fanatics have been WRONG... WRONG... WRONG on EVERY model, on EVERY prediction means nothing to you???

    That's what results from Americans putting down real scientific education.

    If you can't understand that being WRONG ***ALL*** of the time proves yer theory is crap.....

    Well, I could get a refund on your "real scientific education"...

    I'm just sayin....

  181. [181] 
    Michale wrote:

    Interestingly enough, the glaciers in Glacier Nat'l park for instance, have been receding slowly ever since the first white men saw them going on 200 yrs ago, FAR earlier than the burning of fossil fuels in modern quantities could possible account for.

    Can ya'all explain that???

    {{{ccchhhhiiiirrrrrrrrpppppp}}} {{cchhiiiirrrrrrrppppp}}

    That's what happens when FACTS and reality collide with ya'all's hysterical Humans Cause Global Warming religion....

  182. [182] 
    Michale wrote:

    The point is that this is one data point.

    But it's a DATA point that disproves your theory..

    It's a data point that ya'all ignore..

    And there are HUNDREDS, THOUSANDS of those data points that disprove the theory and that ya'all ignore..

    THAT'S why you can't claim "SCIENCE" because you only accept the science that supports yer theory and you ignore the science that DOESN'T support your theory...

    That's not SCIENCE... THAT is politics..

    They are data points that are not particularly conclusive in any direction, however they tend to lean towards the global warming theory

    OMG how "scientific"...

    As old as I am, I still remember my high school science..

    No where in my science books did I see the scientific measurement called "leans to"...

    Care to elaborate??? :D

  183. [183] 
    Michale wrote:
  184. [184] 
    Michale wrote:

    Neil,

    You, so far, haven't explained anything. You are either too aloof and just cast us all as the ignorant great unwashed who are beneath you:

    You mean, like ya'all are with Trump supporters???

    "Physician, stuff thyself."
    -Captain James T Kirk, STAR TREK, My Enemy, My Ally

    :D

  185. [185] 
    Michale wrote:

    You, so far, haven't explained anything. You are either too aloof and just cast us all as the ignorant great unwashed who are beneath you:

    You mean, like ya'all are with Trump supporters???

    But, to be fair, at least Democrats aren't running around gunning down Trump supporters in Congress..

    Oh.... Wait....

  186. [186] 
    Michale wrote:

    Over 85% of the nation is below freezing, and nearly 1/3 is below 0 deg. F. The forecast is for cold air to continue to flow down out of Canada into the central and eastern U.S. for most of the coming week.
    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2018/01/u-s-average-temperature-plummets-to-11-deg-f/

    Yea.. Global WARMING... :^/

  187. [187] 
    Michale wrote:

    “Trump Adviser’s Visit to Moscow Got the F.B.I.’s Attention.” That was the page-one headline the New York Times ran on April 20, 2017, above its breathless report that “a catalyst for the F.B.I. investigation into connections between Russia and President Trump’s campaign” was a June 2016 visit to Moscow by Carter Page.

    It was due to the Moscow trip by Page, dubbed a “foreign policy adviser” to the campaign, that “the F.B.I. obtained a warrant from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court” in September — i.e., during the stretch run of the presidential campaign.

    You’re to be forgiven if you’re feeling dizzy. It may not be too much New Year’s reverie; it may be that you’re reeling over the Times’ holiday-weekend volte-face: “How the Russia Inquiry Began: A Campaign Aide, Drinks and Talk of Political Dirt.”

    Seven months after throwing Carter Page as fuel on the collusion fire lit by then-FBI director James Comey’s stunning public disclosure that the Bureau was investigating possible Trump campaign “coordination” in Russia’s election meddling, the Gray Lady now says: Never mind. We’re onto Collusion 2.0, in which it is George Papadopoulos — then a 28-year-old whose idea of résumé enhancement was to feign participation in the Model U.N. — who triggered the FBI’s massive probe by . . . wait for it . . . a night of boozy blather in London.
    http://www.nationalreview.com/article/455036/new-york-times-trump-russia-collusion-narrative-reset-george-papadopoulos-carter-page

    More bullshit from the Leftist MSM that ya'all bought into, SOLELY because it was what you wanted to hear..

    "I {believed} all the stuff in the bible! Even the stuff that contradicted all the other stuff!!"
    -Ned Flanders

  188. [188] 
    Michale wrote:

    “Trump Adviser’s Visit to Moscow Got the F.B.I.’s Attention.” That was the page-one headline the New York Times ran on April 20, 2017, above its breathless report that “a catalyst for the F.B.I. investigation into connections between Russia and President Trump’s campaign” was a June 2016 visit to Moscow by Carter Page.

    It was due to the Moscow trip by Page, dubbed a “foreign policy adviser” to the campaign, that “the F.B.I. obtained a warrant from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court” in September — i.e., during the stretch run of the presidential campaign.

    You’re to be forgiven if you’re feeling dizzy. It may not be too much New Year’s reverie; it may be that you’re reeling over the Times’ holiday-weekend volte-face: “How the Russia Inquiry Began: A Campaign Aide, Drinks and Talk of Political Dirt.”

    Seven months after throwing Carter Page as fuel on the collusion fire lit by then-FBI director James Comey’s stunning public disclosure that the Bureau was investigating possible Trump campaign “coordination” in Russia’s election meddling, the Gray Lady now says: Never mind. We’re onto Collusion 2.0, in which it is George Papadopoulos — then a 28-year-old whose idea of résumé enhancement was to feign participation in the Model U.N. — who triggered the FBI’s massive probe by . . . wait for it . . . a night of boozy blather in London.
    https://tinyurl.com/y86b8w24

    More bullshit from the Leftist MSM that ya'all bought into, SOLELY because it was what you wanted to hear..

    "I {believed} all the stuff in the bible! Even the stuff that contradicted all the other stuff!!"
    -Ned Flanders

  189. [189] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    Just a heads up.. Wordpress still pukes when you put up NRO web addresses...

  190. [190] 
    Michale wrote:
  191. [191] 
    Michale wrote:

    Paula wrote:
    rawstory.com/2018/01/they-crushed-my-spirit-texas-teens-leave-racist-kkk-message-for-server-at-ihop/

    Trumpers.

    So, we're back to this...

    2017 Las Vegas shooting

    On the night of Sunday, October 1, 2017, a gunman opened fire on a crowd of concertgoers at the Route 91 Harvest music festival on the Las Vegas Strip in Nevada, leaving 58 people dead and 546 injured. Between 10:05 and 10:15 p.m. PDT, 64-year-old Stephen Paddock of Mesquite, Nevada, fired more than 1,100 rounds from his suite on the 32nd floor of the nearby Mandalay Bay hotel. About an hour after Paddock fired his last shot into the crowd of 22,000, he was found dead in his room from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. His motive is unknown.

    The incident is the deadliest mass shooting committed by an individual in the United States. The shooting reignited the debate about gun laws in the U.S., with attention focused on bump fire stocks, which Paddock used to allow his semi-automatic rifles to fire at a rate similar to that of a fully automatic weapon.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2017_Las_Vegas_shooting

    Dumbocrats.. :^/

  192. [192] 
    TheStig wrote:

    M-180

    "Interestingly enough, the glaciers in Glacier Nat'l park for instance, have been receding slowly ever since the first white men saw them going on 200 yrs ago, FAR earlier than the burning of fossil fuels in modern quantities could possible account for."

    Can ya'all explain that???

    The most parsimonious explanation is the above quote is bullshit. Stucki gave no source for the information. According to the Glacier Nat Park website, the first Europeans (fur trappers) didn't reach the area until the early 1800's (Lewis and Clark missed it by 50 miles) and European settlement was spotty until rail heads were established in 1891. Systematic,real time, monitoring of the glaciers started in the 1980s, evidence of glacial retreat in the industrial era is limited to photographic sequences dating back to the late 1930s.

  193. [193] 
    Michale wrote:

    The most parsimonious explanation is the above quote is bullshit. Stucki gave no source for the information.

    So... Anything un-sourced is "bullshit"....

    Then 95% of EVERYTHING ya'all spew is "bullshit"...

    OK... If that's your argument, then ya and I are in complete agreement...

    We actually agree... Welcome to the new year!!! :D

  194. [194] 
    Michale wrote:

    Wait a tic!!!

    Yer filter broken, TS???? :D

  195. [195] 
    TheStig wrote:

    CSW-142

    "isn't weather how climate manifests itself?"

    It is more like:

    "weather is how climate manifests itself AT ANY GIVEN MOMENT"

    It's all about partitioning of variance. Climate is the meteorological variance you can explain with an underlying model. Weather is the remaining random variance you report, but can't explain.

    Neil Degrasse Tyson has great analogy. Climate is a man walking along a narrow path. Weather is his dog on a long leash.

  196. [196] 
    TheStig wrote:

    M-192

    The filter reports each post. I can switch the comment blocker on or off. Sometimes, in the context of other comments referencing you, I switch you on, for a tic.

    Happy New Year.

  197. [197] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Stig

    I visited Glacier Nat'l Park with my family as a 15 yr-old in the '50's. The Park Service tourist information signs at all of the tourist overlook points made the claim that the glaciers had been receding slowly ever since the first white men saw them.

    You're right, that ain't exactly scientific proof, but the photo arrays beginning well before the mass burning of fossil fuels at modern levels, are damn tough to dispute.

  198. [198] 
    John M wrote:

    [153] C. R. Stucki

    Which is fine for your local area only. Hopefully that won't change. But it doesn't mean its great for the rest of the world. An arid area that relies on snow pack for its drinking water, might not be so great another 20 to 25 years from now if temperatures continue to rise and you are still around.

  199. [199] 
    John M wrote:

    [165] C. R. Stucki

    "Interestingly enough, the glaciers in Glacier Nat'l park for instance, have been receding slowly ever since the first white men saw them going on 200 yrs ago, FAR earlier than the burning of fossil fuels in modern quantities could possible account for."

    Coal first started coming into widespread use in 1690, and by the time of the American revolution in the 1770's, the industrial revolution in Europe was in full swing. So fossil fuels were being used before the glaciers were discovered.

  200. [200] 
    John M wrote:

    [169] Michale

    "Really??

    And yet, ya'all claimed that President Trump would destroy the WORLD economy??"

    You do realize that the performance of the stock market, which is what Neil is talking about, and the paychecks ordinary Americans get, are two separate things right?

    After all, it took Bush at least 3 years before he totally wrecked the economy. But, since you are so fond of saying how much better Trump is, who knows? Maybe Trump can destroy it in a shorter time!

  201. [201] 
    John M wrote:

    [174] Michale

    "Yea!! The polar ice caps will melt!!

    Oh wait.. No, that hasn't happened.."

    Except that it has. The north polar cap is melting.

    "But!!! But!!! Polar bears will die off!!!!

    Darn!! Polar bear populations are flourishing.."

    Except that they are not. Or did you not see the recently widely published photo of a young polar bear male dying of starvation on Canada's Baffin Island?

    "OH!! OH!!!! Killamanjaro will lose it's snow cap!!!!

    Crap!!! THAT hasn't happened either!!!"

    Except that it is shrinking, and at the current rate, will be completely gone in another 100 years.

    Why do you constantly lie about things Michale???

  202. [202] 
    John M wrote:

    [175] Michale

    "yes, hacking is illegal under the computer fraud and abuse act (CFAA)

    And yet, there is absolutely NO FACTS that prove hacking occurred..."

    And yet, what is an admission my Wikileaks itself if not proof???

  203. [203] 
    John M wrote:

    [176] Michale

    "3.) As Elizabeth also said, no one disputes that the climate has changed even when man was not around. But we have proof that in all of geologic history that we can measure, it has never changed as fast in as short a time as it is now doing.

    Ok, then quit saying that humans are causing climate change...

    It makes you sound like a damn fool..."

    Michale, how you can read something and totally miss what is actually said makes you look so incredibly stupid. You're the one who looks like a damn fool.

    Humans are causing the climate to change because it is changing now more rapidly and to a larger extent than any natural forces can account for as evidence by past history, where the climate changed only due to natural forces, but slowly and in small steps at a time. Not rapidly and in huge leaps that we are seeing now.

    I can only conclude that your ignorance and avoidance is willful and deliberate.

  204. [204] 
    John M wrote:

    [185] Michale

    "Over 85% of the nation is below freezing, and nearly 1/3 is below 0 deg. F. The forecast is for cold air to continue to flow down out of Canada into the central and eastern U.S. for most of the coming week.
    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2018/01/u-s-average-temperature-plummets-to-11-deg-f/

    Yea.. Global WARMING... :^/"

    And that right there is Michale's utter stupidity on full display.

    Gee, it's cold in winter in one spot on Earth, therefore global warming doesn't exist. Totally ignoring everything else that was said about all the rest of the world being warmer than normal at the same time, and well as about the variability of local weather and local weather and climate over time not being the same thing.

  205. [205] 
    John M wrote:

    Trying to have an intelligent conversation with you Michale, has unfortunately become like trying to have a reasonable rational discussion with a Lyndon LaRouche supporter. In the words of President Trump "Sad!"

  206. [206] 
    Michale wrote:

    TS,

    Neil Degrasse Tyson has great analogy. Climate is a man walking along a narrow path. Weather is his dog on a long leash.

    All BS aside....

    Can you explain why Humans Case Global Warming proponents try to equate weather with climate when it suits their agenda to do so???

  207. [207] 
    Michale wrote:

    Trying to have an intelligent conversation with you Michale, has unfortunately become like trying to have a reasonable rational discussion with a Lyndon LaRouche supporter.

    Yea, that's what happens when you try to push a political agenda over facts and reality...

    Case in point:

    Gee, it's cold in winter in one spot on Earth, therefore global warming doesn't exist.

    You mean, like when you people applauded Obama when he said that glaciers melting in the summer is proof positive of Global Warming..

    You mean like that???

    Humans are causing the climate to change

    And yet EVERY model or prediction you have said to try and PROVE this has been WRONG WRONG IMPRESSIVELY WRONG...

    How is that???

    I can only conclude that your ignorance and avoidance is willful and deliberate.

    And I can only conclude your continued support of this fantasy is due to Party slavery...

  208. [208] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    John M

    I'm well aware that coal burning began in Europe before any white men ever arrived in Glacier NP. I'm also aware that the coal you refer to was being dug by a human lying on his belly underground swinging a short-handled pick, and then being loaded into a wheelbarrow to be hauled to the surface and be carried away in a horse-drawn wagon.

    I also feel safe in guessing that all the coal burned in Europe for the first 200 yrs of coal burning would not equal the volume of coal extracted from a modern strip mine and burned in a modern coal-fired power plant in a single week, so let's keep things in perspective in that discussion.

  209. [209] 
    Michale wrote:

    And yet, what is an admission my Wikileaks itself if not proof???

    All that THAT proves is Wikileaks had the data..

    Doesn't prove ANYTHING about how they got it..

    Why wouldn't the DNC let the FBI forensically analyze the server to confirm hacking took place???

    Do you have a logical answer for that???

    No??? Didn't think so...

  210. [210] 
    Michale wrote:

    Except that it has. The north polar cap is melting.

    And the southern ice cap is growing...

    Even if ALL of the arctic ice melted, do you know how much of the sea level would be affected??

    NONE.... ZERO... ZILCH... NADA.....

    Except that it is shrinking, and at the current rate, will be completely gone in another 100 years.

    It was supposed to be GONE 10 years ago...

    NOW you make ANOTHER prediction... And if we could live til then, you would be WRONG again...

    You are part of a con, JM...

    "You are being conned on a global scale!!"
    -Condor, BY DAWN'S EARLY LIGHT

  211. [211] 
    TheStig wrote:

    CRS-195

    Tourist information at an overlook is not peer reviewed science.

    "glaciers had been receding slowly ever since the first white men saw them." Glaciers have been receding for 11,000 years. What disturbs is that this rate of glacial retreat has increased dramatically since 1950 and and coincides with a dramatic upward inflection in world wide use of fossil fuels - and a resulting spike in atmospheric CO2 - and coincidentally, your trip to the glacier.

    http://www.seafriends.org.nz/issues/global/FFemissions.gif

  212. [212] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Stig

    That's not just coincidence I peed on one of the park's glaciers!

  213. [213] 
    neilm wrote:

    And yet, ya'all claimed that President Trump would destroy the WORLD economy??

    Really? How about a link to prove it?

    Otherwise we'd suspect you might be full of it Michale ;)

  214. [214] 
    neilm wrote:

    And the southern ice cap is growing...

    Nope.

  215. [215] 
    neilm wrote:

    And yet EVERY model or prediction you have said to try and PROVE this has been WRONG WRONG IMPRESSIVELY WRONG...

    Man you live in one desperate, screwed up World Michale.

    Firstly, many predictions turned out to be accurate. Secondly, it isn't the accuracy of predictions that prove that anthropomorphic climate change is occurring, it is existing evidence.

    But you retreat into your little fantasy world where reality is what you watch on Fox News or read on your bubble websites.

    Oh, and Happy New Year :)

  216. [216] 
    Michale wrote:

    Powerful earthquakes to ravage Earth in 2018 as planet's rotation temporarily slows
    Experts believe there is a correlation between the slowing of the Earth's rotation and more powerful earthquakes

    http://www.mirror.co.uk/science/powerful-earthquakes-ravage-earth-2018-11785189

    Of course, this is caused by Global Warming.. :^/

  217. [217] 
    Paula wrote:
  218. [218] 
    Michale wrote:

    Firstly, many predictions turned out to be accurate.

    Name one...

    Secondly, it isn't the accuracy of predictions that prove that anthropomorphic climate change is occurring, it is existing evidence.

    Ahhhhhhhhh I get it now...

    It's not that the bullshit claims are bullshit claims.. It's that the bullshit claims EXIST that proves things.. :D

    So, you can make any bullshit claim you want, regardless of accuracy and the fact that you MAKE the bullshit claims PROVES that it's true...

    And you say *I* live in a frak'ed up world??? :D

    Happy New Year to you as well.. :D

  219. [219] 
    Michale wrote:

    And yet, ya'all claimed that President Trump would destroy the WORLD economy??

    Really? How about a link to prove it?

    Otherwise we'd suspect you might be full of it Michale ;)

    Are you going to claim that NO ONE here said that Trump's election would be bad for the world economy???

    If that's your claim, state so.. Then I can prove you wrong.. :D

  220. [220] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Michale makes a valid point; 'Weather' can never be conflated with 'climate' when it's a bitter cold spell, but it's always climate when it's a hurricane a drought or a flood!

    For Dems/Libs, it appears warm stuff is global warming/climate, cold stuff is weather!

  221. [221] 
    Michale wrote:

    rawstory.com/2018/01/colorado-shooting-suspect-was-an-iraq-war-vet-who-posted-alt-right-pepe-memes-on-social-media/#.Wkr2GElg6uQ.twitter

    Trumper.

    Suspect in congressional shooting was Bernie Sanders supporter, strongly anti-Trump
    http://www.cnn.com/2017/06/14/homepage2/james-hodgkinson-profile/index.html

    Dumbocrat........

  222. [222] 
    Michale wrote:

    Michale makes a valid point; 'Weather' can never be conflated with 'climate' when it's a bitter cold spell, but it's always climate when it's a hurricane a drought or a flood!

    Exactly..

    SOMEONE who actually has more than 2 brain cells to rub together or is not enslaved by Party dogma...

    Hallelujah!!!! I am not alone anymore!!!! :D

  223. [223] 
    Michale wrote:

    Correct me if I am wrong, but snow requires low humidity, right???

  224. [224] 
    Michale wrote:

    Are you going to claim that NO ONE here said that Trump's election would be bad for the world economy???

    Because if someone made the claim and YOU didn't refute it, then you agreed.. Because, as you Lefties have proven beyond ANY doubt, Silence DOES indeed, give assent.. :D

  225. [225] 
    neilm wrote:

    1. And yet, ya'all claimed that President Trump would destroy the WORLD economy??

    2. Are you going to claim that NO ONE here said that Trump's election would be bad for the world economy???

    Do you know the difference between "everybody (i.e. y'all)" and "somebody (i.e. not NO ONE)"?

    Try to keep up with your own games.

  226. [226] 
    neilm wrote:

    For Dems/Libs, it appears warm stuff is global warming/climate, cold stuff is weather!

    Oh you've got us all now!

    Well that convinced me to throw out 150+ years of science from multiple disciplines. It made me realize the every major academy of science is wrong and some poorly educated bloggers on CW.com are the only reliable source for climate science.

    I mean, cherry picking quotes to prove a puerile point is how science is advanced after all.

    Well done guys!

  227. [227] 
    neilm wrote:

    SOMEONE who actually has more than 2 brain cells to rub together or is not enslaved by Party dogma...

    Hallelujah!!!! I am not alone anymore!!!! :D

    Congratulations. We now have a total of "more than" four brain cells from the right wingery!

    Now, if we can get a few hundred thousand more we will have enough brain cells for a jellyfish.

    You must be so proud ;)

  228. [228] 
    Paula wrote:

    neilm and John M: The skeptical position cannot be defeated. That is why it is consistently used by rightwingers. All they have to do, after you laboriously provide data and links etc. is say "I don't believe you because (insert stupid statement or link).

    As neilm noted earlier, too, they will demand you go to great lengths to explain complex ideas that they will then reject out of hand, but if you don't go to great lengths to educate them they will accuse you of lack of expertise.

    They do not argue in good faith, they aren't interested in learning. They are simply baiting you. Most, if not all, of their "arguments" are rote rightwing talking points -- that should be your clue to not take anything they say remotely seriously.

    You CAN, of course. I wasted plenty of time previously on the rightwing spigot but I finally internalized how much of a waste it was. Stucki seems to be cut from the much the same cloth.

    They lure you by dropping an occasional sane statement in with the muck and you think you're making headway. You aren't. They are just the pig you are wrestling, covering you with mud and enjoying it. (I mean no disrespect to pigs, but huge disrespect to rightwingers.)

    They've been trained (by watching their propagandists in action) to employ a list of dodges and if you review argument streams you'll see them doing it. The make assertions they can't prove and then take assertions you make, and prove, and disregard your proof. They constantly move the goalpost. They engage in both-siderism and whataboutism to avoid acknowledging wrongdoing on the parts of their leaders/reps. When you beat them in an argument they insult you while refusing to acknowledge your point.

    Lather, rinse, repeat.

  229. [229] 
    neilm wrote:

    OK Michale, there are at least 20 active posters on CW.com.

    Please post a quote of every one of us who claimed that 45 would destroy the World economy.

    And yet, ya'all claimed that President Trump would destroy the WORLD economy??

    Otherwise some of us might start to develop an inkling of doubt about your ability to deal in the real world of facts.

    I mean, if you are right you should be able to pull 10 quotes almost instantly.

    Prediction: crickets.

  230. [230] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    At least that will give him something to do for the next little while ... :)

  231. [231] 
    Mezzomamma wrote:

    221. Snow is the product of humidity and cold, being a form of frozen water. If the level of water vapor in the air is too low, snow can't form. Humidity occurs at low temperatures as well as high ones. So no, snow does not require low humidity.

  232. [232] 
    Michale wrote:

    Neil,

    Do you know the difference between "everybody (i.e. y'all)" and "somebody (i.e. not NO ONE)"?

    If SOMEBODY said it and NOBODY refuted it, then EVERYBODY agreed with it.

    That's the rule that YA'ALL established after Charlottesville...

    You make the rules.. I just kick yer ass by them.. :D

  233. [233] 
    Michale wrote:

    Mezzomamma,

    221. Snow is the product of humidity and cold, being a form of frozen water. If the level of water vapor in the air is too low, snow can't form. Humidity occurs at low temperatures as well as high ones. So no, snow does not require low humidity.

    Hmmmm... In my snow making days, I always thought it did..

    We're having temps tonight in the mid 30s with a mid 20s windchill, but 100% humidity...

    I was hoping for snow, but thought the high humidity would nix it..

    Thanx.. You at least gave me and mine hope.. :D

    Thank you very much.. :D

  234. [234] 
    Michale wrote:

    OK Michale, there are at least 20 active posters on CW.com.

    Please post a quote of every one of us who claimed that 45 would destroy the World economy.

    I don't HAVE to quote all 20..

    I just have to quote 1 and show that NONE of ya'all said anything in disagreement..

    "What are you putting on shoes for!!?? You can't outrun a bear!!???"
    "I don't have to outrun the bear!! I just have to outrun you!!!!"

    -UP A CREEK

    And, as ya'all established in Charlottesville, SILENCE GIVES ASSENT... :D

    You lose.. :D

  235. [235] 
    Michale wrote:

    At least that will give him something to do for the next little while ... :)

    Yea.. At least 40 whole seconds. :D

  236. [236] 
    neilm wrote:

    I don't HAVE to quote all 20..

    I just have to quote 1 and show that NONE of ya'all said anything in disagreement.

    OK, show us 1 quote then. At least that will be a start, even if I don't accept the rest of your argument.

  237. [237] 
    Michale wrote:

    OK, show us 1 quote then. At least that will be a start, even if I don't accept the rest of your argument.

    Then no deal..

    I am not going to research what I know to be a fact just sose you can weasel out of it like ya'all always do..

    Ya'all established in Charlottesville that SILENCE GIVES ASSENT..

    Yes or no?

  238. [238] 
    Michale wrote:
  239. [239] 
    neilm wrote:

    Hey Michale, I just wanted to remind you of a guest column I wrote about 45 and the economy almost a year ago when I didn't predict that he would destroy the world economy:

    http://www.chrisweigant.com/2017/01/17/guest-author-business-cycle-blues/

    Reading the comments to see if anybody else predicted that he would, I found a nice little quote from you that I'm sure you'll be unhappy to remember:

    Trump is just simply fantastic!!! :D Let's hope Trump has the wisdom and foresight to embrace the Border Adjustment.. As a businessman, Trump has stated he doesn't like the Border Adjustment..

    As President, Trump would be a fool not to fall in love with the Border Adjustment...

    Well it turns out we were both right. 45 is a fool. No border adjustment in the tax bill, because 45 didn't like it.

    Apr 12, 2017 - U.S. President Donald Trump does not like the "border adjustment" tax cooked up by U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan and other Republicans in the House of Representatives. - Rueters

  240. [240] 
    Michale wrote:

    Hey Michale, I just wanted to remind you of a guest column I wrote about 45 and the economy almost a year ago when I didn't predict that he would destroy the world economy:

    And yet, someone else did and YOU didn't comment.. That means, by ya'all's Charlottesville rule, you agree with it..

    All I need is your confirmation and I'll prove you wrong..

    I know it won't be forthcoming because I know you can't stand being proven wrong.. :D

  241. [241] 
    Michale wrote:

    No border adjustment in the tax bill, because 45 didn't like it.

    Facts to support??

    No???

    Of course not...

  242. [242] 
    neilm wrote:

    In an interview with Wolf Blitzer in 2004 he [Donald Trump] commented that: "I've been around for a long time and it just seems that the economy does better under the Democrats than the Republicans."

    Michale: you've been looking in the wrong place for a doom prediction for the World economy - you should just have looked to your dear leader!

    You can see him say it himself: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mCB6RvRojIQ

    And since you didn't disagree with him at the time, it proves you also think the same!

    Must be sad to be you right now ;)

  243. [243] 
    Michale wrote:

    Must be sad to be you right now ;)

    Whatever you have to tell yourself to sleep at night.

    How can I be sad..

    PRESIDENT TRUMP... :D

  244. [244] 
    neilm wrote:

    Amusingly Michale, your dear leader was the person predicting a large downturn during the Presidency:

    “The only thing that looks good is the stock market, but if you raise interest rates even a little bit, that’s going to come crashing down,” Mr. Trump said. “We are in a big, fat, ugly bubble.” - September 2016

    (Note: we've raised interest rates more than "a little bit" since then, of course.)

  245. [245] 
    Michale wrote:

    (Note: we've raised interest rates more than "a little bit" since then, of course.)

    And yet, things are great..

    So, obviously President Trump was wrong in Sep of 2016..

    Funny how you only want to believe Trump when he says what you want to hear.. :D

    PTDS... Strong and true..

  246. [246] 
    Paula wrote:

    [234] neilm: You issued a challenge for the spigot to back up his assertions. He follows up by refusing and moves on to more of his tricks.

    You link to Blotus to make a point and the spigot replies that DT was WRONG then, but right now. And the thing is, it wouldn't matter if Blotus came out tonight and reversed himself again - it doesn't matter what Blotus says, anymore than it matters what the spigot says. They don't believe in accuracy or honesty. All they care about is "winning" in the moment and discrediting anyone outside the cult.

    The spigot (and Stucki) aren't interested in exploring the concept of global warming, they only want to discredit it, and if they can't (which they can't through evidence) they want to discredit those who believe in it.

    You can't "win" an argument with a troll by providing evidence or proof. Trolls like the spigot are exactly like Blotus: Blotus "wins" by getting away with being a liar and criminal. To date that's been because he has money -- he has been able to pay his way out of trouble -- he pays fines for money laundering instead of being jailed, for instance. Other times, because he has money, he could drag out court cases and wear out people who had legitimate claims against him but didn't have the deep pockets to hang in there against his legal dodges. Now as POTUS, Blotus gets away with crimes because the GOP is letting him, for their own utterly discreditable reasons. We can all hope he won't end his days without paying a real price for being a conman and traitor, but up til now money (and now the GOP) has always protected him from really suffering consequences for bad acts.

    The spigot is exactly the same. He cheats in that he doesn't argue in good faith. He "wins" because he "get's away" with it and comes back the next day and some of you interact with him as though he isn't just a spigot for rightwing propaganda, who's purpose is to bait "liberals" and discredit Dems/non-Repubs, or interrupt discussions that make Blotus /GOP /Trumpers /Republicans look bad.

    The adult thing to do is ignore him. The fun thing to do is mock him mercilessly -- and you've barely gotten started. Try it! You can make him cry UNCLE coz he's really a big baby. But you can't make him admit his arguments are incorrect, not factual, not consistent, etc. because none of that matters to him. All that matters to him is his refusal to give you the satisfaction of being "correct". And he has a Sean Hannity-approved bag of tricks he uses over and over and over again to ensure he dodges any efforts to hold him accountable for his bullshit comments, assertions and evasions.

  247. [247] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Most Diametrically Opposed Blog and Comments Section ... generally speaking, of course:

    Three guesses and the first two don't count.

  248. [248] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Paula

    Evidently you missed where I said I'm a firm believer in global warming, or you are offended by the fact that I consider it of little consequence at the present time, based on personal experience.

    I'd love to hear about your personal experiences, observations etc. that make you a believer, but I fear that your real reasons are ideological rather than meteorological, right?

  249. [249] 
    Kick wrote:

    LWYH and Everybody
    97

    Trump claims he did not collude with the Russians.

    Time to officially retire the words "collude" and "collusion" and replace them with "conspire" and "conspiracy." The proper word is "conspiracy."

    Here, let me use it in an example sentence:

    Paul Manafort has already been charged with conspiracy against the United States, and there are more indictments coming.

    https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/4163389-Manafort-Gates-Indictment-Filed-and-Redacted.html

    See how easy that is, ladies and gentlemen?!

  250. [250] 
    Michale wrote:

    You issued a challenge for the spigot to back up his assertions. He follows up by refusing and moves on to more of his tricks.

    How do YOU know???

    Yer supposed to be blocking me..

    Did ya'all's filters go bye bye?? :D

  251. [251] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    My predictions for 2018

    Pence will be indicted while VP and not replaced.

    Trump will no longer be in the White House by the end of 2018. He's more likely to resign than be impeached.

    Mueller and his team will issue in excess of 60 indictments that will include holders of cabinet positions and members of congress (of both parties). This will affect the balance of power in both chambers.

    Among congressmen indicted will be Dana Rohrabacher, Devin Nunes and Paul Ryan. Mitch McConnell will also be in trouble.

    John McCain will not survive 2018.

    Thad Cochran will retire citing deteriorating health. He'll be quietly replaced by an non-controversial republican appointed by the Mississippi governor.

    Michele Bachmann will run for the senate and fail.

    2018 will be a wave election for Democrats who will take both the House and the Senate.

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