Friday Reads: The time has come,’ the Justices said, To talk of many things

Bathing Man. Edvard Munch.1918

Good Day Sky Dancers!  And yes!  It really is Friday

News broke last night that “Jan. 6 texts missing for Trump Homeland Security’s Wolf and Cuccinelli”   If that’s not a sign of a series of cover-ups, I do not know what is. This is another amazing scoop by Carol D. Leonnig and Maria Sacchetti.

Text messages for President Donald Trump’s acting homeland security secretary Chad Wolf and acting deputy secretary Ken Cuccinelli are missing for a key period leading up to the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, according to four people briefed on the matter and internal emails.

This discovery of missing records for the senior-most Homeland Security officials, which has not been previously reported, increases the volume of potential evidence that has vanished regarding the time around the Capitol attack.

It comes as both congressional and criminal investigators at the Justice Department seek to piece together an effort by Trump and his allies to overturn the results of the election, which culminated in a pro-Trump rally that became a violent riot in the halls of Congress.

The Department of Homeland Security notified the agency’s inspector general in late February that Wolf’s and Cuccinelli’s texts were lost in a “reset” of their government phones when they left their jobs in January 2021 in preparation for the new Biden administration, according to an internal record obtained by the Project on Government Oversight and shared with The Washington Post.

The Wounded Foot, 1909, Joaquín Sorolla y Bastida

These reset excuses are getting old.  There’s some good news on the Senate for a change.  First, it looks like Lt. Governor Mandela Barnes will be the Democratic Candidate for the Senate and has a wonderful chance of beating current worthless Trumper Senator Ron Johnson.  Another Democratic challenger has suspended their campaign. This is from The Cap Times that follows the political news coming from Madison, Wisconsin.

The decisions from Nelson, Lasry and Godlewski to drop out have turned the Democratic U.S. Senate primary on its head and all but ensured Barnes will take on Johnson in November.

“Over a year ago, we launched this campaign to defeat Ron Johnson and return this Senate seat to the people of Wisconsin,” Godlewski said in a statement. “I stepped up because, too often, Washington overlooks so many of the challenges working families face — from affordable child care and senior care to paid family leave to prescription drug costs to reproductive freedom. I believed we needed more working moms at the U.S. Senate table who would fight like hell to make these issues a priority — I still do.”

“But it’s clear that if we want to finally send Ron Johnson packing, we must all get behind Mandela Barnes and fight together,” she continued. “I’m proud of what our 72-county campaign has accomplished, and while I may not be on the ballot this November, every issue we fought to bring front and center will be.”

Democratic Senators Schumer and Manchin outfoxed the Republicans in the Senate in a move worthy of Moscow Mitch.  All the Republicans are having hissy fits. The Marriage Equality bill may get the brunt of their temper tantrums as they now say they will not vote for anything. This is from The Atlantic as written by Robinson Meyer.

Every few years, American politics astonishes you. Yesterday was one of those days.

In the late afternoon, Senator Joe Manchin announced that he had reached a compromise with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer over President Joe Biden’s long-ailing legislative agenda. In a move that seemed to shock almost all of their colleagues, the two men unveiled a nearly completed bill that will reduce the federal budget deficit, reduce greenhouse-gas pollution, invest in new energy infrastructure, and lower health-care costs.

Every few years, American politics astonishes you. Yesterday was one of those days.

In the late afternoon, Senator Joe Manchin announced that he had reached a compromise with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer over President Joe Biden’s long-ailing legislative agenda. In a move that seemed to shock almost all of their colleagues, the two men unveiled a nearly completed bill that will reduce the federal budget deficit, reduce greenhouse-gas pollution, invest in new energy infrastructure, and lower health-care costs.

And now for the main event.  The Supreme court is on Summer hiatus.  Several have been giving speeches, and Justice Thomas unceremoniously quit his adjunct gig because of student protests over his misogyny and homophobic messages in the context of his role in the overturn of Roe. His comments also invited the states to go after marriage equality and possibly even reinstate old sodomy laws.

This is from Axios referenced in the tweet that follows.

The big picture: After the Roe ruling was released, some GW students launched a petition urging the university to remove Thomas from teaching and cancel the constitutional law seminar he teaches at the law school. The petition was signed by over 11,000 people as of Wednesday.

  • GW stood by Thomas, writing in a letter that “[b]ecause we steadfastly support the robust exchange of ideas and deliberation, and because debate is an essential part of our university’s academic and educational mission to train future leaders who are prepared to address the world’s most urgent problems, the university will neither terminate Justices Thomas’ employment nor cancel his class in response to his legal opinions.”

Go deeper: Clarence Thomas is at the peak of his power

In a tradition started by Sandra Day O’Conner, Justice Sotomayor and Cult member and Hand Maid Amy Coney Barret spoke to an audience, trying to seem as collegial as possible.  This is from CNN: “Justices worry about the future of the Supreme Court — and point fingers as to who’s to blame.” Well, I’d blame Trump, everything he touches turns to shit, and this Supreme Court is full of it. Moscow Mitch is a good candidate for the appearance that settled law doesn’t matter anymore. Ariane De Vogue provides this analysis.

Limping away from one of the most significant terms in decades, justices are sending out flares expressing concern not only for the future of the Supreme Court but the country as a whole as institutional norms dissolve, tensions rise, and the court pivots right with the addition of three new members.

The justices are mostly on their summer recess now, having left behind a trail of bitter conservative-liberal splits on issues that will reshape how Americans live their lives when it comes to reproductive health, religious liberty, the environment and gun rights.

In those opinions and in public comments, members on both sides of the ideological divide are expressing reservations not about their ability to interact civilly — but about the court itself and its future.

All the while, the public doesn’t like what it sees. According to a new Marquette Law School poll, 61% of the public disapproves of how the court is handling its job. And 63% oppose the ruling overturning Roe v. Wade, according to a CNN poll released Thursday.

“If over time, the court loses all connection with the public and with public sentiment, that is a dangerous thing for a democracy,” liberal Justice Elena Kagan told an audience in Montana last week, when asked generally about what a court can do to increase public confidence.

I think people are rightly suspicious if one justice leaves the court or dies and another justice takes his or her place and all of a sudden the law changes,” Kagan added. “It’s like: what’s going on here? That doesn’t seem like law”

Seascape near Les Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer, Vincent van Gogh , 1888

You may go to the article to read the droppings of the conservative Justices, including more from Uncle Thomas and Court Nanny John Roberts. Maybe he just quit that adjunct job so he’d have more time to visit his wife in her future room in a hoosegow.

We know Brent Kavanaugh is off at some bar getting drunk and assaulting whatever will come near him.  But this one from Alito basically demonstrates a great evil on the court. The Grand Inquisitor delivered a speech in Rome on “religious liberty” or, as he calls it, how I force my extremist dogma on the entire country.  It was in service to Notre Dame Law School. This is from Politico.  “Alito mocks foreign critics of Supreme Court abortion ruling.”  How dare they mock him when it came directly to him as he flayed himself unconscious as is encouraged to do by Opus Dei. A few of these justices likely do it together over too many beers.  And again, you have no doubt as to why they called it the Dark Ages.

Most of Alito’s 36-minute speech was devoted to a discussion of religious liberty, with the conservative justice arguing that support for religious liberty is eroding because so many people now say they lack religious belief.

“It is hard to convince people that religious liberty is worth defending if they don’t think that religion is a good thing that deserves protection,” Alito said, before outlining some arguments that might find traction with what he called an “increasing” number of people who reject religion or don’t consider it important.

That was after he suggested Bojo got what he deserved for mocking him.  Rather arrogant or just a bad joke?  And then there’s this that upset him.

“What really wounded me was when the duke of Sussex addressed the United Nations and seemed to compare the decision whose name may not be spoken with the Russian attack on Ukraine,” Alito said. “Despite this temptation, I’m not going to talk about cases from other countries.”

I wish he would just get out there and do comedy, but we’re stuck with him until he croaks. You can watch his performance on the youtube that follows.

So, I hope that the paintings of the ocean were calming because we are still in for stormy weather.  There are also plenty of  Republican grifters that are ready to eat their followers after fattening them up with fairy tales.

Have a great Friday and Weekend!!!


Wednesday Reads: Fairy visitors…

Good morning. I’ve been visited by the migraine fairy, so just a quick post today.

Cartoons via Cagle website:

If only:

Now that is a pretty purple bird.

This is an open thread.


Sunday Reads: Maybe we should call it, Embryonic Cardiac Activity?

Hello…and good morning.

Quoted below:

…as I’ve watched media coverage of abortion rights in America after the demise of Roe v. Wade, and as I’ve watched conservative politicians and interest groups pen anti-abortion legislation, it’s became clear that the American anti-abortion movement has been at the forefront of redefining reality — and that they’ve succeeded in radically reshaping our understanding of human life, pregnancy, and parenthood to be far outside of the bounds of scientific consensus, of common sense, and of anything human beings have believed for most of human history.

Read the rest of the thread at the link above…but here’s some more thoughts on the “heartbeat” laws. Here in Georgia, many Abortion Activists are referring to these draconian laws as “Fetal Cardiac Activity” Laws, but I think even that is a bit too friendly. It should be called out for what they are…Embryonic Cardiac Activity Laws! because embryos don’t have hearts.

Quoted below:

…obstetricians say the term “fetal heartbeat” is misleading, and that this scientific misunderstanding, among countless others, may contribute to negative public opinion toward abortion.

To wit: though pulsing cells can be detected in embryos as early as six weeks, this rhythm — detected by a doctor, via ultrasound — cannot be called a “heartbeat,” because embryos don’t have hearts. What is detectable at or around six weeks can more accurately be called “cardiac activity,” says Robyn Schickler, OB/GYN and fellow with Physicians for Reproductive Health. The difference between “cardiac activity” and “heartbeat” may seem linguistically minimal, but Schickler and others argue otherwise. At this stage, she says, what doctors can detect is essentially communication between a group of what will eventually become cardiac cells.

“From very early on, different cells are programmed to do different things for what is eventually a fully functioning human body,” says Jennifer Kerns, an OB/GYN and professor at the University of California in San Francisco. “These are cells that are programmed with electrical activity, which will eventually control the heart rate — they send a signal telling the heart to contract, once there is a heart.” It is this early activity which ultrasounds detect — not a heartbeat.

Quoted below:

In fact, “fetus” isn’t technically accurate at six weeks of gestation either, says Kerns, since “embryo” is the scientific term for that stage of development. Obstetricians don’t usually start using the term “fetus” until at least eight weeks into the pregnancy.

But “fetus” may have an appeal that the word “embryo” does not, Kern says: “The term ‘fetus’ certainly evokes images of a well-formed baby, so it’s advantageous to use that term instead of ’embryo’ — which may not be as easy for the public to feel strongly about, since embryos don’t look like a baby,” she explains. “So those terms are very purposefully used [in these laws] — and are also misleading.”

Quoted below:

“It is very common to use non-medical language to publicly talk about a medical procedure,” said David Cohen, professor of law at Drexel University’s Kline School of Law.“The law needs precision in order to know exactly what is being regulated,” Cohen said. “So in medicine it would be by using medical terminology.”

Cackovic, the fetal medicine specialist, said the current “heartbeat laws,” are based only on “our amazing technological advances” that allow detection of the earliest signs of embryonic cardiac activity, “and nothing else.”

On to the cartoons:

Yes, I know it is a bit heavy on Georgia stuff…

So this is the actual cover:

Oh boy….

One last link, and yes it’s a Georgia one:

That’s all for today, this is an open thread.


Wednesday Reads: P.A.B.

Good morning, I’m so fucking sick about everything…that it has got me to the point of distraction. I’ve been watching shark TV…ugh!

Punk Ass Bitch

If you are in or near Atlanta:

Now, I urge everyone to watch the video below, the full video is only 15 minutes… it is an important set of interviews with three trans families in Georgia.

Watch the full video here:

I hope this video opens people to the importance of inclusiveness to the emotional and mental health of these families.

Operation Save Abortion was a really good set of interviews and discussions on the post-Roe situation…I highly recommend you check out these videos and resources at the link below:

Operationsaveabortion.com

How about that heatwave?

And that’s all…this is an open thread.


Sunday Reads: Together Again

Think about it…

Good morning, my Daddy and I laughed like hell at that image up top.

Cartoons via Cagle website:

I know it isn’t much, but I do donate to a few abortion organizations each month… SisterSong, ARC-SouthEast, Abortion Access Front, NARAL. Here are some abortion orgs for 15 different states, check them out.

I loved that song when I was little….I even had my hair cut in a page boy hairstyle like Tennille when I was 5 years old.

This is an open thread.