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Oh, and there we were all in one place, a generation lost in space with no time left to start again.
So come on, Jack be nimble, Jack be quick, Jack Flash sat on a candlestick 'cause fire is the devil's only friend.
Oh, and as I watched him on the stage my hands were clenched in fists of rage.
No angel born in Hell could break that Satan's spell.
And as the flames climbed high into the night to light the sacrificial rite,
I saw Satan laughing with delight, the day the music died.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Linkee-poo, and I ain't got no worries 'cause I ain't in no hurry at all

More digitized manuscripts. I may have posted this one before. It's hard to tell and there are so many. (Grokked from Dr. Caitlin Green)

An interview which ruminates on masks and mythology. The stories we tell ourselves. (Grokked from Terri Windling)

"Just outside of the Medieval church of the Ostrów Lednicki stronghold in Poland, archaeologists have unearthed the strange burial of a giantess. The woman’s skeleton showed that she reached a towering height of 7'2" but also that her short life was full of traumatic injuries and disease." (Grokked from Brandie Tarvin)

How Snake lost his legs. The world is weirder than you think. (Grokked from Hannah Bowman)

"Drilling into hot rocks to tap geothermal energy is one thing. Drilling deep enough to tap the energy from magma oozing into volcanoes is quite another, offering a massive increase in the potential to exploit Earth’s inner heat." What could possibly go wrong? Although this would be Iceland's second geothermal well to tap directly into a magma chamber.

The sugar water industry cribs from the tobacco industry's playboy to try and stop taxes on their products.

Because some people have been talking about abuse in my twitter feed (I don't know why they would, he said shaking his head in an ironic fashion). "A former Ohio mayor has admitted to repeatedly raping a child, prosecutors said — but the self-described Christian blames the girl for her own sexual abuse." About the only good part of this story is he's actually being prosecuted for it in a criminal court, considering that hardly every happens. (Grokked from John)

"(P)olice in Sacramento, California launched a death investigation after spotting a woman walking down the sidewalk with a skull perched on a stick." I guess that would make anyone suspicious. (Grokked from TPM)

"A recent Houston Chronicle investigation revealed that Texas, the state with the lowest percentage of children in special education, 8.5 in 2015, may arbitrarily be capping services, which are entitled by federal law to students with autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, mental illness and other special needs." Oh Texas, why do you hate actual, functional, and science based education so much?

What the Trumpster got wrong about abortion in America during the debate. You know, besides everything. "The vast majority happen in the first trimester: Ninety-one percent in 2012 occurred before the pregnancy reached 13 weeks, according to the most recent numbers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Only 7.2 percent took place after 14 weeks gestation. Fewer than 1.3 percent happened after 21 weeks, late in the second trimester." And those later ones, typically the fetus has died in the womb, or it is finally obvious that should the fetus be birthed, the child would die shortly thereafter, often in much distress. And this is ignoring all the other problems that could happen which would require abortion (such as an ectopic pregnancy). (Grokked from Fred Clark)

"After Donald Trump fueled his warnings about voter fraud on Wednesday night by refusing to commit to accepting the results of the election, one Fox News editor pointed out that there couldn't possibly be enough voter fraud to account for the Republican nominee's significant lag in the polls." He then went on to suggest there's a lot of fraud in the election, but just not enough to account for Trumpster's slide. The amount of voter fraud is actually well below the margin of error in counting the votes (even electronically). The difference between Al Gore and G W Bush in just Florida was more than all the voter fraud in all the US in the past 20 years.

"In what could be the first glimpses of a Trump-branded TV network that many have speculated could be the ultimate goal of Trump's presidential run, (Cliff Sims and Boris Epshteyn) anchored a half-hour pre-debate show and an hour-and-a-half of post-debate coverage, right on Trump's Facebook page." Trial balloon for TrumpTV? Are we all just being punked? Because, as in conservative politics, you can never go too far to the right, and there's always room to go ever farther.

"'Hillary is so corrupt, she got kicked off the Watergate Commission,' Trump said, citing a false Internet rumor as the crowd turned on him and started to boo, something that simply doesn't happen at lavish charity dinners at the Waldorf Astoria hotel. The face of one the guests sitting on the stage behind him was suddenly struck with horror." A report from the Trumpster trail from the debate to the Al Smith Dinner. No, I have little sympathy at this point. (Grokked from Robert J Bennett)

For the evangelicals, Trump or Jesus. (Grokked from John)

"Donald Trump’s national political director will 'step back' from his role overseeing the Republican nominee’s ground game with less than three weeks to go before Election Day, Politico reported Thursday." That can't be good.

"Tens of millions of Americans gathered around TV sets to watch the debate (Wednesday) night. But how they thought it went may depend upon which networks they watched. That's because post-debate coverage can sway viewers' opinions, as a new study suggests." What should come as no surprise, those who watched Fox News thought the Trumpster did much better than any of the other viewers (although it didn't swing those who identified as Democrats). "Moreover, (the researcher) points out that while Fox News has been studied a lot for its effects on voter attitudes, MSNBC perhaps also warrants some new attention." This is because they found that Republicans who watched MSNBC's post debate discussion moved off of their support for the Trumpster. Well, first, it's not like people came into the debate without preconditioning. Also it's not like the debate was an even contest. So I think that may throw some of these answers in the direction they saw. But, yes, Fox and MSNBC are considered the diametrically opposed viewpoints.

Tweet of my heart: @xeni “It’s rigged,” says the wealthy white supremacist man whose entire life has been “rigged” for success, failing ever upwards.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Linkee-poo's last name is Control, no my first name ain't baby, it's Janet, Miss Jackson if you're nasty

Nick Mamatas on writing and privilege. I'm pretty successful, but not at writing because I do prioritize. If it were just me, the calculus may have been different, but I have someone who depends on me making a good living and to provide decent healthcare. I have family and friends that benefit (somewhat) from my ability to provide (I have a feeling in the coming decade that will increase). I'm not able to give to every cause I want to, or give at the level I would like. But I also like to take vacations were we go places and see/experience things (I really can't tell you how much). Shit, I'm writing a blog post. Shortened, I made my choice, which is different than others. I'm still writing. I hope to increase the time and output I address to it by the end of the year, but until I can see a ROI (other than good friendships and interesting living) it will get the short shrift if there is opportunity to make money. I have sacrificed for it, I will sacrifice more, but I can't ask others to make the same levels if sacrifice for me. (Grokked from John Scalzi)

A visual breakdown of the big 5 publishers. (Grokked from Justin)

Why do good AIs go bad? "But AI-enabled machines are only as smart as the knowledge they have been fed. Microsoft learned that lesson the hard way earlier this year when it released an AI Twitter bot called Tay that had been trained to talk like a Millennial teen. Within 24 hours, however, a horde of Twitter users had retrained Tay to be a racist Holocaust-denier, and Microsoft was forced to kill the bot." ProPublilca on Breaking the Black Box with learning machines and the databases of our humanity. Okay, with the search function at the bottom, "Baltimore" was kind of interesting. (Grokked from Justine Larbalestier)

"IBM reported some pretty impressive stats this week. Not least among them the fact that 73% of IBM employees – the company whose personal computer division was once almost synonymous with Microsoft – want a Mac as their next PC… Indeed, IBM Japan has gone as far as making Macs standard-issue: any employee wanting a Windows machine instead has to make a special request justifying their need." Ouch. Anybody know where Michael Dell is at the moment? (Grokked from John)

No, you really can't multitask. Your brain isn't built for it. "But, take heart, Gazzaley said. You don't have to opt out of technology to get some of that brainpower back. In fact, there's a time and place for multitasking. If you're in the midst of a mundane task that just has to get done, for example, it's probably not detrimental to have your phone nearby or a bunch of tabs open. The distractions may reduce boredom and help you stay engaged." Confession here, most of the time I have at least 4 browser tabs open (and probably multiple windows and browsers) at the same time.

"Methane is gushing forth from hundreds of newly-discovered deep-sea vents all along the US’s western seaboard." It's fine. I'm sure it's fine. Everything is fine here. "In all, 500 new seeps were discovered by submersibles operated from the trust’s ship…" We're boned.

Unrest in Academia. "Faculty at 14 Pennsylvania state universities went on strike Wednesday morning, affecting more than 100,000 students, after contract negotiations between the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education and the faculty union hit an impasse."

The Czechs arrest a Russian hacker that "the US is looking for." While they don't name names, anyone taking bets on Guccifer?

"A Maryland police officer was suspended Tuesday after a woman snapped a photograph of a hat promoting the Oath Keepers militia group displayed on the rear deck of his police cruiser."

"Closing arguments are underway in the trial of seven people accused of illegally occupying Oregon's Malheur National Wildlife Refuge last year." They're throwing themselves on the mercy of the jury, although their closing argument is more in the terms of, "Help us Obi-Wan, you're our only hope!"

"Unbeknownst to Mr. Salads, someone shot video of of Mr. Salads staging upthe incident, and posted it to Twitter, exposing Mr. Salads as a fraud. The "vandals" were accomplices following Mr. Salads' instructions to damage the car (which had been parked in a 'black neighborhood' by Mr. Salads)." Ah, the James O'Keefe School of "Journalism" strikes again.

"Some parents at Franklin High School claim their kids have been singled out, after the school distributed a letter to its African American students… The form is titled 'Keepin’ it 100.' It is basically an agreement for students to sign to fulfill their responsibility as 'an African American scholar,' come to school on time every day and work toward completing high school." Um, yeah, that's totally not inappropriate or racist as all. "One student posted on Facebook, 'As a Franklin student we're not mad about what (the principal) is trying to do we're mad about the approach.'" (Grokked indirectly from Annalee Flower Horne)

REDMAP, the story of the intense gerrymandering after the 2010 elections. "People say Obama lost 700 seats in the House of Representatives over these years. Well, yes, but he only had one horrible election in 2010. After that, the lines were changed to ensure that those seats stayed in Republican hands, despite the fact that Democratic candidates in a lot of these states got more votes." With a graphic representation of how you can win a majority with a minority population. (Grokked from Chip Dawes)

"Project Veritas, which has carried out several damaging video sting operations, has posted several videos in recent days purporting to show Democratic operatives bragging about inciting violence at Trump's campaign events, and appearing to detail how they could bus out-of-state supporters in to commit voter fraud." Note that James O'Keefe has not posted the raw footage, which has in the past completely contradicted the "documentaries" he has put out. So, yeah, I'm going to hold judgement on this one until we have the raw footage to review. Because this isn't the first, second, or even third time he's done this.

"The Indiana voter registration problem surfaced when voters contacted the secretary of state's office after discovering through the online system voters can use to check their registration status that their dates of birth or first names were incorrect, the office said. That prompted the office to run a report in the statewide system and it found that thousands of registrations had been altered. The office declined to provide a more precise number." The plot thickens. "Julia Vaughn, policy director for the nonpartisan government watchdog group, Common Cause Indiana, said that before (Secretary of State Connie) Lawson makes allegations of possible fraud her office 'should make sure the voter file records haven't been altered through software snafus or human errors made by people in county or state agencies.'"

The problem with the media, in an attempt to appear "non-biased" or "equal time", the demonstrate their ignorance of the issues. No, "implicit-bias" is not a dog-whistle, CNN. It's a technical term. Clinton is using it to say, "I'm up to date on this issue." "Criminal illegal-aliens" is also not a "dog-whistle." He's being direct. And you completely missed the call to "take fraud and abuse out of the system" as a dog-whistle saying, "those people (also a dog-whistle) are living high off the hog on your dime." And "law and order" does not mean "People of color -- and liberals -- are lawless." It means, "we're going to keep those people in their place because they forgot what their place is." I mean, in an attempt to be polite you've missed the mark on all of them. Jesus in a popsicle, CNN, have they burned you all out?

Last night's debate with fact checks. Over all, Trumpster had a better night than previous debates. It took 33 minutes for Clinton to get under his skin and then the wheels came off the bus. And then the bus crashed and burned. And then the train jumped the tracks and crashed into the burning bus. And then the Trumpster said that he would keep us in suspense about whether or not he would accept the results of the election. At which point I think everybody's brain just shut down because the voices inside their heads keep shouting "HOLY SHIT!"

"Donald Trump Jr. said it would be a 'step down' for his father to become president." And so begins the sulking and claiming, "I didn't want it anyway." Now if we could only be assured he would actually go the fuck away. See, the major problem with last night's, "keeping you in suspense" is that there are groups who take that as a call to arms, even if it's not intentional (which I'm not entirely sure it wouldn't be). (Grokked from Kathryn Cramer)

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Linkee-poo, it's a sin that somehow light is changing to shadow and casting its shroud over all we have known

Tonight is the last debate. And the villagers celebrated.

"The next Weekend Intensive (for Writing the Other) is coming up on November 4 – 6. There are four (4) scholarship spots available for this class made possible by many generous donations to our scholarship fund." Ooooo, pretty. "We’ve set aside one scholarship spot specifically for students who identify as POC or Native." Nice. (Grokked from Julia Rios)

The next class of musicians and bands are up for fan votes at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

I'm not sure if I've talked about it here, but I've come up with a measure of diet control. I like pop, part of the problem, but have gone off having regular drinks of it (long story, I drink mostly unsweetened green tea these days, I have maybe 1 or 2 sodas a month, maybe). So lately I've looked at my food choices with this in mind, a soda has about 120 to 160 calories in it (mostly from added sweeteners). Does the snack or food I'm looking at have more or less? And I make a choice based on if I would want that food or a drink. It can be quite effective (since I know I can resist having a pop, yeah, it's a cheap mental trick, don't spoil a good thing, okay). "… Pepsi says that by the year 2025 at least two-thirds of the drinks in its global beverage portfolio are expected to contain 100 calories or fewer from added sugar per 12-ounce serving. Currently a 12-ounce can of Pepsi has 150 calories, all of which come from sugar." Whelp, I'm going to have to lower the calorie number I use as a guide. Also, when I do have a pop, I try to make sure it uses real sugar, not cane syrup or high-fructose corn syrup. It makes a big difference in both how it tastes and how I feel afterward.

"Compared with physically ill patients, people with mental health conditions rely more on the emergency department for treatment and are more often admitted to the hospital from the ER, the scientists found. Also, they tended to be stuck in the ER longer than people who show up in the ER with physical symptoms." Boy howdy do they. Much of the delay is getting them into someplace where they can be helped.

"U.S. Vice President Joseph Biden's Cancer Moonshot initiative to speed the develop of cancer treatments has made some important strides such as increased information sharing among researchers but still faces challenges in many areas, according to a report out Monday… The White House is still seeking about $700 million from Congress for the project. With Democratic President Barack Obama leaving office in January, it is also unclear how much of the initiative will continue under a new administration." There's so much good research out there, but most of medical research is 1) never published and 2) what data is remains severely controlled by the researcher performing the experiment (there's money to be made, after all - see BRCA-1 and BRCA-2). Science works best when knowledge is shared. Information wants to be free.

We don't need no stinking government regulations or interference in business! "The White House is proposing a new rule that would require airlines to refund the checked baggage fee if luggage is 'substantially delayed,'… Another target is travel websites that offer comparison-ticket shopping. Such websites commonly rank airlines higher or lower based on undisclosed payments or other business incentives… A new rule proposed by the Transportation Department would require such websites to be neutral 'or disclose their bias upfront so consumers can truly comparison shop when booking flights…'" Nope, we definitely don't need any of that. Noted for the kids who haven't experienced anything other than the GW Bush and Obama presidencies, this is how government used to work before one party decided that they didn't want government to work for the people so they would think it was broken.

George Takei is optimistic about the future. And admonishes the kids to go out and vote and help build that better future.

"Using a broad set of keywords to identify anti-Semitic language, an ADL task force found that only 1,600 Twitter accounts were responsible for directing 19,253 anti-Semitic tweets at some 800 U.S. journalists… out of the 19,253 anti-Semitic tweets directed at journalists during this election year, the report found 83 percent of the attacks were directed at just 10 Jewish journalists…"

What could be so wrong about Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte calling for the deaths of drug users and dealers? I mean, they're criminals who are hurting others, right? Besides the violations of human rights, it creates an atmosphere were police believe this is correct behavior. "Outside the U.S. Embassy in Manila, a protest against the U.S. military presence in the Philippines ended with a violent police crackdown, including a police van ramming into protesters." No, it wasn't a "mistake", the police van intentionally ran over protestors. There's video. This is why some of Trumpster supporters' language is disturbing. Violence begets violence.

"Three Kansas men with ties to an extremist, hard-right militia movement were formally charged Monday for domestic terrorism connected to their alleged plans to bomb the day after Election Day a Garden City housing complex that was home to much of the town's Somali Muslim population, as well as a mosque." Words matter. They give people license, they give them ideas. Words are the viral infection vector of both hate and love. Unfortunately much has been given to hate lately.

"Poll workers across the country are on high alert after the recent firebombing of a Republican Party headquarters in North Carolina and reports that two armed men lingered for hours outside a Democratic campaign office in Virginia. Some feel that Donald Trump's claim that the election is rigged, and his suggestion that supporters and their friends to go to polling places to 'watch,' are rhetorical time bombs… 'You know, it's unfortunate that we have to do this, but we want to be overly prepared,' said Amber McReynolds, the director of elections for the city and county of Denver. 'We have added in an active shooter training into our election judge training.'" (Grokked from Jim Wright)

"Voters across Ohio might be heartened to know that for all of Donald Trump’s anti-Muslim rhetoric, his campaign managed to find at least one man of Muslim faith to advertise his support of the Republican nominee… But Grinder Singh Khalsa is not Muslim. He is not a Trump supporter. And he says he did not give the Trump campaign permission to use his image on a mailer."

"It’s worth noting that the Republican National Committee has been under a three-decade-old consent decree… barring it from engaging in any sort of 'ballot security' efforts targeting minorities. The decree is the result of RNC activity decades ago… that Democrats alleged amounted to voter intimidation." So it remains to be seen if Trumpster can be considered as a spokesman for the RNC.

The GOP proves itself to be gullible fools with fake tweets of voter fraud. Well, I believe the evidence that started the whole Voter ID push was even flimsier. And our own Ohio Sec of State John Husted followed the joke tweet down the rabbit hole. Yep, that's life here in Ohio. We shouldn't be too hard on them, they can't even accept their own reports about how Hillary isn't guilty of anything they've accused her of. Multiple reports.

Ooookay. "CORRECTION: A previous version of this article quoted a party official as saying completed absentee ballots might have been destroyed in the attack on the Orange County Republican Party office, which was incorrect. The North Carolina Republican Party and its county organizations do not collect completed absentee ballots." Which is a felony offense of voter fraud. I think it's time someone FOIA/Sunshine law requests the official reports and photos from the fire department. (Grokked indirectly from Fred Clark)

Tweet of my heart: @joss You know, I think people are just pissed they're rebooting the Clinton administration with a female lead (Grokked from Christopher Moore)

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Linkee-poo, you're built like a car, you got a hubcap diamond star halo

Turns out the Ecuadorian Embassy cut Assange's internet access. Wow. That's, uh, disappointing.

Five myths of the middle ages. There's been this story idea in the back of my head for the past 3 years of a vaguely 2nd world Arabic desert society where the struggle is to control magic and the trade routes through the unpopulated areas. After writing out a synopsis last year I thought the story was DOA (no real there there, mostly I have the "villain's" story, but not anyone to challenge it except for some paper thin concepts). But as I incorporate more influences and cultures (because my brain won't shut up about it), I'm beginning to think it may actually have legs. (Grokked from Dr Caitlin Green)

Ann Leckie on the fear of being blacklisted. First, she's correct. Look, nobody has the time to create and keep such a list up to date. Can you piss off an editor so much that they'll never buy from you? Probably. And editors do talk with each other so if you're an intentional ass to one, you can probably bet twenty or so will know you by reputation if not by name. But this is the opposite of the Myth of The Secret. You know, that Secret. The one to publishing. See, there's some handshake that published authors have learned that let them in. Go to a convention and you'll see published authors hanging out with each other. See. SEE! Look, I'm not a published author yet (shakes tiny fists at the sky and yells at the clouds). But I've met a lot of people in this business who are. And I hang out with those authors in the bars at cons. I hung out with some of them when there were where I'm at and I watch them launch while I sat on the pad, and they were also hanging out with published authors back then. There is no secret handshake. It's all about the writing. Stephen King talks about this in On Writing where he's felt "on the outs." Even once he was published he felt dissed by the polite literary societies. But you know what? He's made a crap ton of money, is by any measure highly successful, and he eventually did win American Letters awards. And if you listen to his lectures you'll hear how he still feels shut out in some places. Editors work with lots of people, not all of whom they like. But as Ann Leckie says you have to be a real asshole, the type that does worse than eat live kittens, to find yourself on the outs. Trust me on this one. I've face planted numerous times and been (unintentionally) the jerk in the group. And this winter, in Detroit, I will still be allowed to raise a glass with that incrowd of authors and some of them will ask just why the hell I haven't been published, yet. (Hint, it's because I'm not breakout good enough, yet, and my output has been a trickle these past 6 years).

A tweet storm on what psychological abuse means. (Grokked from Jason Sanford)

Saladin Ahmed on fantasy, reality, the stories we tell ourselves, and how/what we choose defines us.

"Kaakutja, perhaps the first known boomerang victim." Pointed to for both the respect shown to the remains (here in the US, tribes typically have to sue to have remains returned, which is why they're now very reluctant to give them up in the first place) and to demonstrate that they initially thought the wounds were from metal swords. Older weapons technology was exceedingly good, all metal really did was reduce some maintenance and increase usable life. There's the tradition held that a samurai was just as deadly with his bokken as he was with his katana (IIRC Minamoto Musashi won his first dual using a wooden training sword, although it's sometimes claimed this was a quarterstaff like weapon, against a fully armed samurai). (Grokked from Jason Sanford)

Planet Money podcast on the Miracle Apple. Kids these days don't know how lucky they are.

"Yana Shapiro is a partner at a Philadelphia law firm with an exhausting travel schedule and two boys, ages 9 and 4. When she feels run-down from juggling everything and feels a cold coming on, she books an appointment for an intravenous infusion of water, vitamins and minerals." While the article lumps this in with other "alternative medicine" (which has been widely ridiculed), and many doctors will tell you it's a complete waste of money and time, I can tell you that it probably is effective, if more than a little dangerous. See most people, even if they're able to drink enough liquids, don't. This is why one of the first treatments you receive in an emergency room is getting a bad of salt water tied into your blood stream (hydration). Add "nutrients" to that drip is a fast way of getting them into your system. And here's something most people don't know, your liver keeps most of anything getting into your bloodstream (it's a real problem for pharmaceuticals which is why doses tend to be 2 to 10x more than really needed, because your liver will stop most of it and you need to overwhelm the liver, it's also why injection drugs are both faster and more potent, and it's also why snorting or injecting oxycontin is the method of choice for addicts even before the reformulation to make it extended release). The dangerous part is your liver performs that function for a reason. Take potassium for instance. Too much K in your blood leads to tachycardia, muscle cramps and convulsions (the car equivalent would be like when you add nitrous oxide to the fuel mix, too much and your engine blows out). This is parenteral nutrition, which needs a doctor's prescription. It is also the 2016 version of high colonics. Most healthy people don't need them, even if it may make you feel better, because you're doing more damage than good.

"The government claimed that it is legal to enter a building and demand everyone's fingerprints, passwords, encryption keys to unlock all phones." Well, that's not the actions of a totalitarian regime at all. (Grokked from Ken McConnell)

"Many countries think of TB as a disease of the past and this lack of awareness results in shortfalls in funding and a lack of political will to aggressively combat the disease." The hospital I work at is near our Sheriff's office, we see many prisoners for a lot of things, but mostly we're taking chest X-rays to screen for TB (they have positive skin-test results). Some of them have been positive (it's also why your health workers are tested every year for TB).

"'I promise you that we will be united against any Supreme Court nominee that Hillary Clinton, if she were president, would put up,' McCain said." So I believe Sen. McCain is conceding defeat and accepting that the Senate will be controlled by Democrats. Otherwise he's advocating dereliction of duty and dishonoring the Oath of Office of a Senator. He also said he doesn't know if Trumpster would nominate anyone better of SCOTUS. Well, Uncle Johnny Walnuts, I guess you should have supported Merrick Garland's nomination then instead of being a leading voice against his nomination moving forward. (Grokked from Chia Evers)

"On Thursday evening, there were noticeably more Secret Service agents monitoring the news media’s pen, though the agency declined to comment about the protection. Both CNN and NBC News have their own security at Trump rallies to protect their reporters and cameramen."

While they both have the word "Foundation" in the title, there really is little other that the Clinton Foundation and the Trump Foundation have in common.

"According to a Politico report Monday, Holder will serve as chair of a new umbrella group called the National Democratic Redistricting Committee, which will bring together national and state-level Democratic political groups, as well as unions and progressive organizations. The group will mobilize around elections in the years to come that will determine who gets to draw the districting maps after the 2020 census which will be in place for the following decade of elections. The White House has worked closely on launching the campaign, and the President strongly backed the choice of Holder as its chair, Politico said." Thanks, Obama. No, really, thank you. I was going to write about this after the election that no matter what the outcome (still have my fingers crossed) the Democratic Party should look and work very hard on this issue. Maybe lead state referendums on making redistricting a non-partisan process and define congressional districts into more heterogenous areas that have regional identity instead of party loyalty. My suggestions is including mathematical requirements on the geography of districts that make it hard to gerrymander (there would also be a provision to allow exceptions, but they would be a low percentage instead of what seems to be a majority of cases).

"The mayor of a small Pennsylvania town was voted out of office on Monday after his town council rebelled against him for sharing a barrage of racist, derogatory messages on his public Facebook page."

A Michigan GOP official is ousted from her elected office (with the party) for not supporting Trump. Noted because in the back of my head I'm on the lookout for the beginnings of the purge within the GOP.

Had this thought over the weekend that after 8 years of sounding off about the threat of (for all intensive purposes, nonexistent) voter fraud that the Republicans are now keeping the whirlwind. Unfortunately that reaping will affect all of us, and might get a lot of us hurt. (Grokked from Beth Falk)

Whomever paid for this billboard, I love you. (Grokked from Kelly Link)

"A Donald Trump staffer on Sunday claimed that the Republican presidential nominee never mocked the appearance of women who have accused him of sexual assault, but noted that, in her view, it would not be 'offensive' if he did." Wow, that's some weapons-grade denial right there. But then it comes from the worldview of "'When you have somebody claiming that you sexually assaulted them, you have brought looks into the equation,' she said." That's not how it works. That's not how any of this works.

The news media continue to take the Trumpster literally when he claims the election will be rigged. He's whining, people. It's his little pity party. It's his version of holding his breath. Here are five reasons you can't rig our elections. He can't accept that he's going to lose so he has to blame it on something else, after all he's wonderful. He has a history of claiming things are rigged when he doesn't win, or people are stupid/boring/on failing shows when they disagree with him. Jesus, don't you all get he has the maturity of a 5 year old? What will be interesting is what new laws and voter requirements will be proposed by GOP governors and state legislatures when they lose a 3rd POTUS election in a row.

"Donald Trump’s “election protection” effort will be run by Mike Roman, a Republican operative best known for promoting a video of apparent voter intimidation by the New Black Panthers outside a polling place in 2008." I don't see any way this could go wrong. (Grokked from Xeni Jardin)

"Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz) said Monday that if Hillary Clinton is elected, Republicans will unite to block anyone she nominates to the Supreme Court." While he later walked that back (I mean, how can you delay for 4 years?), my guess is that they'll also block lower court appointees, like they did for Clinton and Obama.

Tweet of my heart: @andylassner The @GOP candidate for president who says only he has the temperament to stand up to terrorism is tweeting about SNL being mean to him. (Grokked from Pat Rothfuss)

Monday, October 17, 2016

Scenes from a Commute

Well, from the commute home on Sunday. This is East Branch Reservoir at it's lowest. Normally except where there are trees, this is filled with water and people are fishing. I'm not sure this captures the full riot of color.

Linkee-poo, they paved over paradise and put up a parking lot

Frozen Dead Guy Days in Nederland, CO. The world is stranger than you think. Found through a statement in this story about a suspect being arrested in an attempted bombing of the local police department.

Wikileaks claims a "state" actor has severed Assange's internet access.

Our upstairs neighbors are worried about our self-esteem. So they started the "Tell America It's Great" campaign. Thanks, Canada. We think you're pretty great as well. And I'm not just saying that. You're were we all think we'll move to when the shit hits the fan. Love, US. PS, don't worry about us, we're just working through some issues at the moment. Sometime in December our inbuilt, self-grandeur will kick back in. Until them we have ice cream, Oreos, and bourbon. (Grokked from NPR)

Want to know what real election fraud looks like? It looks like this disinformation campaign. That image looks like it's from the Clinton campaign, but it's not. It's from people who want to throw the election to Trump. You might remember the mailers in several states back in 2012 that listed the wrong dates for voting that only went out to Democratic voters. There is one party interested in voter fraud, it's because they're the party actually doing it. It's stupid shit like this that makes me want to start the revolution. In all seriousness, go out and vote. I don't care whom you're voting for, but I want you to vote. That's one of the reasons I'm no longer a part of the Republican Party. (Grokked from Mur Lafferty)

A GOP local office in North Carolina is fire bombed. Don't do this. This is the wrong response. And while I understand the emotion and frustration that could lead to it, this isn't our side's playbook (at least since the 70s). And I really hate that part of me is thinking this is a false flag, it will depend on how the candidates spin it this week. Why do I think this? "'They are working around the clock. It is a miracle that nobody was killed'"… The GOP office is located at a retail complex along the interstate that's several miles from the town's historic square… Another business owner discovered the damage Sunday morning." Retail complex, hot fire, not discovered until the next morning, office normally occupied but no one hurt. No fire alarm? No sprinklers? Fortunately the fire "burned out" before moving to other offices. Who takes the time to spray paint "Nazi Republicans"? "Nazis" works just as well, and is faster. It's like the perpetrator didn't think anyone would get the reference. Also, in "hate crimes" you typically don't use the symbolism of the group being targeted except to "mark" them.

Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz cries once more unto the breach dear friends, once more. Another investigation into Clinton's email server. Because why not, it's not like they're going to do anything else, obviously.

"The Republican candidate’s links to Russia are a mix of bling, business and bluster spanning 30 years. The FT has compiled this account from a variety of sources, tracing Trump's fascination for Russia from its beginnings in Soviet times, through the Putin era to the US presidential campaign." There's a lot to digest in there. (Grokked from Xeni Jardin)

Tweet of my heart: @HarrietSalem The 21st century. A place where we live stream war while Facebook prompts us to 'react' with an emoticon. #Mosul link to Facebook page with video (Grokked from Jim Wright)

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Linkee-poo has been walking my mind to an easy time, my back turned towards the sun, Lord knows when the cold wind blows it'll turn your head around

Every Southern Gothic Novel ever. Okay, it's like playing a country song backwards so you get your dog back, you truck fixed, and your wife back. But then I'm working on a new phrase (mostly for Romance Writers), "I can't hear you because the money truck was backing up" (also works for JK Rowling, Dan Brown, Stephen King, Danielle Steele, …) (Grokked from Ferrett Steinmetz)

Well, maybe it wouldn't be radio signals, but laser light that an extraterrestrial would reveal themselves. And there's someone who thinks they found 234 such signals. Or, you know, it could be a calibration error.

"The feds arrested three members of a right wing militia for allegedly planning to detonate explosives at an apartment complex in Garden City, Kansas, with Somali Muslims specifically the target, law enforcement announced at Friday." As a white person, I denounce this act. Also noted, this is another attempt to start the revolution.

"The State Department is banning passport and visa applicants from wearing eyeglasses in photos taken for the documents." Well, there's a solution in search of a nonexistent problem. They say it's to help speed applications, but then it will slow down processing as everyone who wears glasses will have to remove them to process through passport control. The real problem is that facial recognition software can have problems with glasses (when people don't wear them all the time) and the advent of spoofing technology to foil facial recognition software.

Ben Carson gets a little flustered about being pressed on his candidate's statements. See, we're all getting distracted by things that make them uncomfortable and they don't want to talk about it. Mostly because it gets back to the 2012 fiasco of "legitimate rape", which is what they're arguing at this point. Also, "It's a place where they take sick people. But that's not important right now."

"'What vision to Hillary Clinton and her party offer the people? They want an America that doesn’t stand out. They want an America that is ordinary. There is a gloom and grayness to things,' (Paul Ryan) continued. 'In the America they want, the driving force is the state. Where we are ruled by our betters, by a cold and unfeeling democracy that replaces original thinking. A place where the government twists the law and the constitution itself to suit its purposes. It's a place where liberty is always under assault. Where passion, the very stuff of life is extinguished. That is the America Hillary Clinton wants.'" Wow, that's one heaping helping of projection there, Pauly. Remember when the Republicans were all about the character of their leaders? Good times.

"Dictators throughout history have created chaos in order to justify the use of force. But Trump’s ability to carry out this plan relies on him getting elected. With that option off the table, what comes next?" Some times it helps to know you're not alone. (Grokked from Xeni Jardin)

So, what exactly do Trumpster supporters hear when he says to go and watch polls and make sure, "you know." "His supporters here said they plan to go to their local precincts to look for illegal immigrants who may attempt to vote. They are worried that Democrats will load up buses of minorities and take them to vote several times in different areas of the city. They’ve heard rumors that boxes of Clinton votes are already waiting somewhere… And if Trump doesn’t win, some are even openly talking about violent rebellion and assassination, as fantastical and unhinged as that may seem." Voter intimidation, delusions, paranoia, it's all a part of the Trumpster Circus. (Grokked from Xeni Jardin)

Tweet of my heart: ‏@LibyaLiberty If you're an American confusedly watching the darkest forces of ur nation rally behind a demagogue-maybe u can understand the Mid East now. (Grokked from Diana Rowland)

Friday, October 14, 2016

Scenes from a Commute

Driving into fog.

Linkee-poo ain’t blind, just a matter of time before you steal it

Tobias Buckell posts aa draft website for Caribbean SF.

The social impact and mirror that are our ghost stories. In the audio of the story they ask (at the end) how someone figured out or came up with the idea of "walk backwards around (a certain) tree three times with a dead cat on your shoulder, ghosts will appear." Raises hand, "I know."

"The Women’s Reserve Camouflage Corps were a group of 40 woman artists… who devised camouflage systems for fighters and materiel during WWI, testing their theories by hiding in Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx -- where the local cops grew accustomed to having seeming rocks and trees spring to life as they passed."

"A case of racism in the sky almost led to a man’s death on a recent Delta flight out of Detroit. According to witnesses and Dr. Tamika Cross, a passenger became unresponsive in his seat. Cross attempted to help the man but was actually stopped by the flight attendants." (Grokked from Neil Gaiman)

English man spends 11 hours convincing his new high tech wi-fi kettle to make a cup of tea. No word if his Nutri-Matic, when it finally worked, "provided him with a plastic cup filled with a liquid that was almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea." Share and enjoy! Maybe it finally got Eddie, the shipboard computer, to respond with the proper formula. (Grokked from Dan)

"Bergen County Judge Roy F. McGeady signed a criminal summons against Christie on Thursday morning, ruling there is probable cause to investigate a complaint of official misconduct against him." Whelp, who knew that would happen? Bueller, Bueller… Don't worry, it's NJ. It just means he'll win re-election, or President Trump can pardon him. (Grokked from Dan)

Eleven-year old girl's question on self esteem in the wake of the allegations (and revelations) of the Trumpster sexual misconduct (cough*Abuse*cough) provokes an off point response from Mikey Pence. I'm sure she'll feel better about herself and how she's degraded and treated like a piece of meat as long as the borders are secure and we do something about ISIS, Mike. I'm sure that's what this girl was asking about.

The NYT takes a swing at that LAT poll I linked to. "Not all of the poll’s choices were bound to help Mr. Trump. But some were, and it all combined with some very bad luck to produce one of the most persistent outliers in recent elections." Mostly because of one person. The article's subject (statistical weighting) is a bit wonky, but they explain it clearly enough. Also I will note here, the reason I watch the 539 polls is they give some good information, but also because of Nate Silver's past performance (in seeing through many of these weighting problems) in correcting other people's polls to come up with a more correct answer. There is, however, no guarantee that he's getting it correct this time.

A Marketplace Edison poll found that a lot of people think the economy is rigged. "However, supporters of Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump differ dramatically on how the rigged economic system is benefiting other subgroups. Sixty-six percent of Trump supporters say the economy is rigged for people who receive government assistance, compared to 32 percent of Clinton supporters. Sixty-two percent of Clinton supporters say the economy is rigged for whites, while 21 percent of Trump supporters say so." So when Trumpster says the economy is rigged, and the election, news media, toilet flush rates, etc, are also rigged, understand that the crowd is hearing something different than the people watching at home. Here is a little bit more in-depth coverage of the poll. Again, there are big disparities of just whom thinks whom is making out. Such as "One quarter of Americans completely distrust the economic data reported by the federal government… Almost half of Donald Trump supporters (48 percent) completely distrust the economic data reported by the federal government, compared to only 5 percent of Hillary Clinton supporters."

In regards to my post last night, man stands outside Democratic campaign office with a gun (open carry). Because that's totally not meant to be intimidating. (Grokked from Xeni Jardin)

Also, in case you thought I was making it up last night about Trumpster ripping off Himmler and Hitler, I'm not the only one who noticed. (Grokked from Xeni Jardin)

"Trump Jr. then said, 'I’m of that mindset… I’m sure I’ll get myself in trouble one of these days — but like, if you can’t handle some of the basic stuff that’s become a problem in the workforce today, like you don’t belong in the workforce. Like, you should go maybe teach kindergarten. I think it’s a respectable position.'" Well, he is right about getting himself into trouble. Dear Junior, the rest of the business world started working to remedy little shits like you back in the late 80s and early 90s. Saying something like this in 2013 just demonstrated how spectacularly out of touch with the real world or real work you and your family are.

Tweet of my heart: ‏@cd_hooks Republican primary voters had every tool in the world they needed to figure out what kind of dude Donald was. This is not the media's fault (Grokked from Paolo Bacigalupi)

Thursday, October 13, 2016

The sum of all fears

"Whatever Trump is thinking or means, the white nationalists and neo-Nazis he's activated will hear his speech with glee because he's channeling text book anti-Semitic conspiracy theories, with all the code words and emotional tenor." (Link grokked from John Scalzi) If this had been his first time, it would be easy to dismiss. Unfortunately for us, he long ago placed himself into the neo-Nazi camp willingly. It's about this speech. It's been a very long time since I looked at the rise of nationalism in Germany, but as I remember Trumpster is pretty much cribbing from speeches by Heinrich Himmler and Adolph. "You are great, but you've been subverted, suborn, and are being robbed of your birth right by these people." That pretty much the message of the Brown/Black Shirts. "'Their agenda is to elect crooked Hillary Clinton at any costs, at any price, no matter how many lives they destroy,' he continued. 'For them, it's a war. And for them, nothing at all is out of bounds. This is a struggle for the survival of our nation. Believe me. And this will be our last chance to save it.'" This is setting up the crowds to both commit and accept violence.

This is the myth of having a gun for self protection against robbery, rape, and home invasion writ large. You are being robbed. Your country is being stolen from you. People are conspiring against you. It would be concerning even without the NRA commercials glorifying a "2nd Amendment Solution" to protect yourself and saying Hillary Clinton is coming for your guns. This is different than past cycles which were merely "they're coming for your guns, support your rights," these commercials start with "I used my gun to protect myself" (call to normalize violence and put the idea in your head of using a gun to protect yourself), snd then "that person doesn't want you to be able to protect yourself" placing that person on the side of criminals who are going to harm you.

After the last election there was a spate of mass shootings where the perpetrators were recorded talking about or wishing that their actions would be the start of the revolution. I remember at least three of these. And this was the call from The Malheur National Wildlife Refuge occupation. They overly believed this would be the start of an armed uprising. The specifically called for groups to join them (only a few did, but people did come from across the US to their cause, Mr. "I just want me weed" was from Ohio). They wanted that to be the Lexington/Concord of the new America.

Our politics have been intentionally polarized for the past 30 years. I'm old enough to remember Conservative Democrats and Liberal Republicans. You don't hear about that too much any more. While the majority of people are politically in the middle, one party has been engaged in a sociological sorting based on symbolic causes (as compared to actual pragmatic programs). This is why you see many Christian Conservatives still supporting Trump even though he is the exact opposite of what they've said they are for. They've even come to the point of openly saying that Trump is a disgusting human being. But Trump has promised them power, promised them he would appoint anti-abortion judges. And because he hits those two symbolic hot points they will be his largest constituency and the leaders have mostly all said they will vote for him. The issue of control of SCOTUS has been very big in these last few weeks. Not by the candidate directly, but by the opening speakers and by his surrogates.

Since the last election this sorting has accelerated. Both sides look at the other and wonder just WTF they are thinking. Can't they see the Truth? It's even been stated in the debates about not know what world the other person lives in. The echo chambers on both sides have become intense. You might remember the studies about how we've sorted ourselves on social media. We joke about unfriending people (relatives) who hold the opposite political view. So even though we actually are mostly alike, we've been convinced by arguments over symbolic differences that we want different things. Abortion is probably the easiest issue to point to.

But what I'm worried about (and have been since March, although I had been chalking it up to my own paranoia) is this time, if Trump loses (and it certainly looks like not only will he lose, but he will lose big) he has already prepared his loyalists for action. He has made them paranoid and fearful that their world is ending and that they won't be safe. His rallies brim with violence against any target that might present itself (real or perceived, a mob isn't exactly rational in their choice of victim). I'm afraid the fire has already be lit, the decades of resentment have built up a reservoir of fuel, together they've seen their strength which is the air, all it needs is someone to pour gasoline on it.

And Trump, in his self-absorbed narcissism, in his desperate need to "not lose" and with his long established knee-jerk reaction of "hitting back", could either knowingly or unknowingly be the one who pours that gas.

I really, really pray I am wrong. I hope this is just my own paranoia. While in 2008 his rhetoric would not have had the same effect, the last eight years has seen the stage set for a violent showdown. Losing this election, possibly losing the Senate, maybe losing the House and state level control might be too much for his followers to accept in their worldview. And as has been shown through both the video of the audience at Trump rallies (what little there is), the profiles of Trump supporters like the PA woman's I shared in a previous linkee-poo, the rise of racist, religious, and personal hate crimes, these are not the most stable of people. They are fragile, and they will feel they've been robbed and are about to be harmed (there's been more than one mention of "re-education camps" in the troll age). They have a palpable need for a strongman figure to "right the world". Their leader is a poor loser and doesn't understand fully what his words and actions are bringing about (while I have some doubts, I do believe this is all narcissism and not actual political planning). Add in the machinations of Putin and we are at a dangerous cross roads.

I really hope this is only my own crazy thoughts.

Linkee-poo is on the pavement, thinking about the government, the man in the trench coat, badge out, laid off says he's got a bad cough, wants to get it paid off

There's also a new Rogue One trailer out today.

Ann Leckie tweet storm on politics in literature.

In case you need it, Alpha Bravo Charlie word chart. (Grokked from Alex C. Renwick)

IBM's Watson makes a film trailer. It's kinda fitting that it was for a horror movie. And the analysis is mostly "we have questions", not a "how well did Watson do." Also, what's not stated, is movie trailers are kinda formulaic, Watson just did pattern recognition and put the pieces together. It's a milestone that it Watson was able to identify the parts of the movie and pull clips to make a (somewhat) coherent story. But it wasn't artistic, and Watson analyzed the "final form" of the film (that is, post production, post music, post voice over, post CGI, etc), something most trailer producers never get. And movies provide lots of clues as to the content and scene breaks, much more than the visual aspects of the movie. So, yeah, Watson started with a huge advantage. (Grokked from Stewart Sternberg)

Samsung's Galaxy Note 7 return kit includes a thermally protected box (and gloves to use placing the phone in the box). (Grokked from Dan)

As a pallet cleanser, have this video of a real life Tortoise Vs Hare race. (Grokked from Miranda Suri)

Feeding cows a certain kind of seaweed could reduce their methane emissions by 90%. Of course, feeding them an appropriate diet (instead of what is cheap and puts on the pounds) would also be a good idea (and reduces methane as well). (Grokked from Robert J Bennett)

Oklahoma Governor calls for prayers for the oil and gas industry. Non-christians need not apply.

"Coffee lovers, alert! A new report says that the world's coffee supply may be in danger owing to climate change. In the world's biggest coffee-producing nation, Brazil, the effects of warming temperatures are already being felt in some communities." Shit just got real.

The Hidden Brain podcast on America's troubled history of immigration and xenophobia. And no, more than likely your ancestors didn't immigrate legally, because for most of our history, there weren't any laws about it.

"Federal prosecutors will charge Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio with criminal contempt of court for violating a judge's order to stop immigration patrols that led to a court finding of racial profiling." Please note how this has been slow walked allowing Arpaio every chance of avoiding it.

Andersen Cooper doing the real journalist's thing. Pinning Trumpster spox Conway on if settling lawsuits is equivalent to guilt (as she implied with Clinton, but can't defend her boss' settling lawsuits). Kids, this is what journalism actually looked like when I was kid. The journalist was prepared, had existing knowledge about subjects, and was dogged about getting an answer to a question. (Grokked from Kathryn Cramer)

There's this meme in conservative circles they like to throw at the media whenever they can (it's a part of the legacy of the GoPAC memo, the strategy of throwing so much shit at the conversation that the opposition can't respond to it all, so some of it gets through) about liberals voting for anyone with a D after their name, no matter how criminal or disgusting. Whelp, with this election I think you can see what a whopping load of projectional horse shit that is.

National Anthem singer takes a knee before an NBA exhibition game and explains the protest quite well.

Yesterday I did a tweet storm about the return of Cold War posturing and the advent of a potential Trump presidency. In the last few years as Putin solidified his power, I've had flashbacks more than once. Including this interview with Sergey Lavrov by Christiane Amanpour when she talks about Pussy Riot in Russia and the recent Trumpster word diarrhea (note warning for unsavory language). Lavrov's response is a classic Cold War putdown and started my brain down this avenue. But then there are these former nuclear missile officers who are warning the same thing. Do not let that madman near the football. On a lighter note, there was also this NPR story on visual markers used for spy satellites. I knew instantly what they were.

And then, not a half hour after typing that, "'But if they vote for Hillary it's war. It will be a short movie. There will be Hiroshimas and Nagasakis everywhere.'" A Putin advisor on the American election. (Grokked from Robert J Bennett)

Sure he may be a terrible person, but "'The bigger point is he is going to appoint the right justices to the Supreme Court.'" Jerry Falwell, Jr on supporting the Trumpster while 250 of the students, alumni, and faculty sign on to a letter decrying such support. Junior then goes on to explain how he doesn't really understand the admonition of the Christ to "render unto Caesar…". But he is correct, the students are young and have much to learn. Like how to compromise your values and integrity by selling your religion "unto Caesar" and turn your back on the Christ while saying duplicitously that you're serving him. That's a hard lesson for those so young. Junior, you've not only invited the money changers into the Temple, you've offered to carry their water.

"Federal investigators believe Russian hackers were behind cyberattacks on a contractor for Florida's election system that may have exposed the personal data of Florida voters, according to US officials briefed on the probe." It's fine. Everything is fine. Hanging chads aren't looking so bad now, are they? (Grokked from Paolo Bacigalupi)

"Roger Stone, a longtime confidante of Donald Trump's, confirmed Wednesday night that he has had 'back-channel communication' with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange." But there's no collusion. Nope. None at all. The same way candidates don't coordinate with SuperPACS that support them.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Linkee-poo, they'll slip to their window and they'll see him and they'll think that white hood is all they need

The Radiation Waiting Room by Susan Herron Sibbet. Probably this is the first oncology poem I've read, and it's a good one. Fuck cancer.

The humble pencil (which is actually pretty technical).

Something new has been added… at the Winchester Mansion. "Winchester, who was trapped in the room at the time of the 1906 earthquake, sealed the room away believing evil spirits had caused the quake." (Grokked from Alex C. Renwick)

"Looking at 60 past studies, Russ’s team found plenty of evidence that air pollution is associated with dementia. 'There weren’t any studies that didn’t find a link between air pollution and dementia… Particulate matter, nitric oxides, ozone or carbon monoxide – all were linked to dementia.'… There was also a clear link with vitamin D deficiency, and a weaker association with passive smoking and occupational exposure to pesticides… More surprising was the link between dementia and living close to power lines. 'There’s not a lot of evidence, but what there is seems to be reasonably robust…'"

"'The finding that generational differences in the Protestant work ethic do not exist suggests that organizational initiatives aimed at changing talent management strategies and targeting them for the 'very different' millennial generation may be unwarranted and not a value added activity,' Zabel said in a news release. 'Human resource-related organizational interventions aimed at building 21st century skills should therefore not be concerned with generational differences in Protestant work ethic as part of the intervention.'" So take your "Boomer's superior work-ethic, GenX and Millennials are slackers" concepts and shove it. Damn Boomers. #notallboomers (Grokked from Mer Haskell)

"Authorities say a pickup truck plowed through a crowd protesting in support of Native American rights on Columbus Day in Reno, Nevada, leaving five hurt."

"'There are a million ways you can weaponize drones — fire rockets, strap things in and crash them,' Chris Woods said. He added: 'This is the stuff everyone has been terrified about for years, and now it's a reality.'" Who needs suicide bombers when you can send a drone?

"Having lost the fight over gay marriage, (Louisiana's) religious right decided that the sacred institution of wedlock was once again under attack — this time, by devious immigrants. Undocumented workers and even terrorists had newly discovered they could exploit Louisiana’s marriage laws to gain citizenship, legislators claimed, leading to a supposed epidemic of 'marriage fraud.'… So, as of this year, any foreign-born person wanting to get married in Louisiana must produce both an unexpired visa… (and), somewhat inexplicably, a birth certificate." So many immigrants, legal immigrants, can't get married in Louisiana. Nope, totally not xenophobic at all. (Grokked from Justine Larbalestier)

You know that conservative talking point, re-lied by the Trumpster, about Muslims needing to help law enforcement (and intimating that they don't)? "The suspect, Jaber al-Bakr, one of the 890,000 migrants and refugees to enter Germany last year, was able to escape on Friday from his apartment… despite heavy surveillance and a police raid… A nationwide search resulted in his capture early Monday after unidentified Syrians in Leipzig recognized the fugitive from police appeals issued in Arabic and German, tied him up at an apartment and alerted the authorities." Also note, many of the refugees in Europe are different form those we bring to the US. Many made the land journey seeking asylum in Europe. The refugees who comes to the US are vetted by the UN and then by our State Department for nearly 2 years before they are allowed to enter the US. Many conservatives, including their Presidential candidate, don't want you to understand that there is that difference.

Kameron Hurley fairly describes what it's like to live in Ohio in this election year. I'll add I live in what otherwise would be considered a "rural" part of Ohio. I've seen Trump signs in yards (including the very big signs) since middle August (and most houses with one will have at least two or even five, yes, there are two houses on my commute that have 5). It's only been in the past two weeks that I've seen Clinton yard signs. For a long while I was concerned, but I'm feeling a little better now.

Conservatives anti-abortion women on voting for the Trumpster. Marjorie Dannenfelser of the Susan B Anthony List, who is also a Trumpeter advisor, makes the case. Basically, it's about the Supreme Court, as also Hillary Clinton is also just as bad. From the conservative view, enablers are as bad as abusers, but neither should have jail terms. Note how Steve Instep needs to keep her on topic and to stop attacking Clinton. Also note the continuing conservative conspiracy theories and her stumble of "moral fiber has been slapped in the face…".

But Marjorie Dannenfelser is correct. This election is about the Supreme Court's direction for the next generation. For conservatives they talk about abortion (mostly), but for progressives there is so much more. There's Citizens United, Voting Rights Act, gay marriage, corporations having religious rights, treating corporate speech as equal to free speech, human's rights over corporation's rights, CFPB, clean air, clean water… All of these things will be affected by the SCOTUS the next president leaves us. So besides keeping a living dumpster fire of a person from gaining access to the levers of power, it's about ensuring our freedoms and liberties which have been under assault since the court was intentionally swayed in a "conservative" direction in the 80s. And here the conservative view of the 2016 election is correct, I would vote for a terrible person if I felt assured they would appoint justices who believe in the Constitution (and not in Scalia's cynical "Originalists" concepts), believe in freedom for all, believe in leveling the playing field for all, and believe that corporations are not actual humans (and are only given that fiction).

Case in point, a Federal Court rules the CPB is unconstitutional, but instead of striking it down, changes the relationship of the director from "dismissed with cause" to "serves at the pleasure of the President" thereby making it constitutional. IANAL, but that "Constitutional" bit sounds more like "precedent" and not something actually in the Constitution. Any Originalists want to disagree? (Yeah, didn't think so.)

Whackaloon Maine Gov. LePage spills the beans about wanting a strong man type authoritarian from a Trump presidency. Boom, there it is. Also, I love this part, "LePage was seemingly unconcerned by Trump’s comments about forcing himself on women… conceded that Trump is not the 'ideal guy I'd want my daughter going after.'… the Maine governor’s daughter, was hired in August by the Trump campaign as state coalitions director."

If you follow me on twitter you may have seen me make jokes about "really wanting there to be re-education camps." And when I type that, I think of people like this and am a bit ashamed, but then I think of those taking advantage of them and those are the ones who need the camps. "She… had once been a Democrat and was now a Republican… Like millions of others, she believed that President Obama was a Muslim. And like so many she had gotten to know online through social media, she also believed that he was likely gay, that Michelle Obama could be a man, and that the Obama children were possibly kidnapped from a family now searching for them… To Melanie, this was the glory of the 2016 presidential election. The truth about so many things was finally being accepted, from the highest levels of the Republican Party on down to the grass roots of America, where so many people like her didn’t care what some fact-checker said, much less that one day Trump would suggest that Obama wasn’t born in America, and on another say maybe he was." It's a disturbing read about a person whose world collapsed in on itself and how they found a voice and hope in the lunatic fringe. I'd say it reads like fiction, way to chockfull of confirmation bias, if I didn't know people very close to this in real life. And boy how the peddlers of the whackaloon life prey on them, not only taking their money, their support, and their sanity, but deny them a life. (Grokked from Xeni Jardin)

How's Wisconsin's voter ID law working out? It's stopping legal immigrants from voting. Well, I guess it's working as intended. Dear judge, time to fucking knock it down. (Grokked from Brandie Tarvin)

"Republican vice presidential nominee Mike Pence chided a Trump supporter Tuesday who talked about there being a post-election revolution if Hillary Clinton wins the election." There was talk like this in both 2008 and 2012, but it seems to me that it keeps increasing. Some of the vitriol earlier could be relived by "not having a True Conservative" running for office (as in, "this is why we lost"). In 2016 the alt-right doesn't have that release valve. You might remember several instances in late 2012 and early 2013 where white people shot cops and shouted about "starting the revolution." I have a feeling this fall will see an increase of such occurrences.

They're dreaming of a white cabinet. Just like the ones they knew before.

Tweet of my heart: @docrocktex26 The GOP spent the last 16 years vilifying the "elitism" of education/intelligence, but now they're surprised their base nominated an idiot. (Grokked from Paolo Bacigalupi)