Wednesday Reads: Replacement Theory

That cartoon above is by Pat Bagley, and it is another perfect example of the art of political cartoons.

Now as you know…political cartoons are my favorite. Here we go…via Cagle website:

There was such a problem with the last post I did on Sunday, that I wanted to share a few signs from the #BansOffOurBodies rallies that were held on Saturday…along with some updates and comments found on Twitter about the mass hate murder in Buffalo.

This next story takes place in a town just on the state line from Banjoville…

Before I share a few more cartoons and tweets, you need to see this from 60 Minutes…if you haven’t already seen it:

It is absolutely overwhelming to watch what this family discovers when one man buys an old house in the town where he grew up…I truly believe that God is a Black Woman, and I have to say…she is looking down on this family and guiding them on their journey here.

Here is an article about the family from January:

Okay, a few more cartoons:

Seriously, y’all need to follow Pat Bagley on the Twitter…

Oh yeah, I’m sure y’all know by now…

Updates on the Primaries.
An interesting thread…

I will end this post with a few cartoons from Luckovich:

And…this is an open thread.


Monday Reads: It’s always the same Nonsense!

Seated Female Clown (Mlle Cha-U-Kao), 1896 Wall Art, Henri
de Toulouse-Lautrec, The Met

Good Day Sky Dancers!

BB is the authority on this, but I’d just like to say if you want any of the best examples of projection as an ego defense mechanism, choose any Republican.  The Encyclopedia of Britannica sums it up nicely. “Projection is a form of defense in which unwanted feelings are displaced onto another person, where they then appear as a threat from the external world.”  From the existence of Pedophiles to Cancel Culture, Republican sloganeering puts a target on something “liberal” and then focuses on getting the attention off the incredible number of instances of it that appear in the Republican Party domain.

A few days ago, I put this Newsweek article up down the thread. “GOP Senator Ray Holmberg Resigns Chair After Texts to Child Porn Suspect.”   The details of anything other than the texts aren’t known right now, but it sure seems a lot of Republicans are overly intrigued with pedophiles these days.  Of course, we know of many recent Republican officeholders–most notably Denny Hastert, the former Speaker of the House– that were actual pedophiles. A judge referred to him as a “serial child molester” after determining he had been molesting boys he coached over decades.  We also have the examples of MagaRats Matt Gaetz and Jim Jordan.  There’s an awful lot of deflecting and projecting dealing with that horrid behavior.

And who could forget this one from a few weeks ago? From Vanity Fair: “TED CRUZ WARNS DISNEY PROGRAMMING WILL SOON DEPICT MICKEY AND PLUTO F–KING.”

In an extremely weird set of remarks, even for him, the Texas lawmaker opined at a live recording of his podcastVerdict With Ted Cruz: “I think there are people who are misguided, trying to drive, you know, Disney stepping in, saying, you know, in every episode now they’re gonna have, you know, Mickey and Pluto going at it. Like, really? It’s just like, come on guys, these are kids, and you know, you could always shift to Cinemax if you want that. Like, why do you have—it used to be, look, I’m a dad. You used to be able to put your kids on the Disney Channel and be like, alright, something innocuous will happen.”

And then there’s this: “Kellyanne Conway Knew Of ‘Sexual Allegations’ Against Nebraska Candidate Months Ago. The former White House adviser and Donald Trump are working for Charles Herbster’s election as governor despite allegations he groped eight women.”  This is from HuffPo, as reported by Mary Papenfuss.

Former Trump administration White House adviser Kellyanne Conway said she heard last year about “some kind of sexual allegations” against GOP Nebraska gubernatorial candidate Charles Herbster — but she’s working to get him elected anyway.

Conway alleged on Steve Bannon’s “War Room” podcast that groping allegations raised by eight women, including a Republican state senator, were somehow cooked up by current Republican Gov. Pete Ricketts, who does not support Herbster, a corporate CEO who has never held office.

Ricketts “got in my face” 10 months ago vowing to “destroy Charles Herbster,” said Conway. She offered nothing else in the way of proof that Ricketts is behind the assault accusations.

A key accuser is GOP state Sen. Julie Slama. She said in an emotional radio interview earlier this month that she was “in shock” at what she called an “assault” by Herbster at a Republican dinner in 2019.

As I was … walking to my table, I felt a hand reach up my skirt, up my dress and the hand was Charles Herbster’s,” Slama said, her voice shaking, in an interview on News Radio KFAB in Omaha. “I was in shock. I was mortified. It’s one of the most traumatizing things I’ve ever been through.”

Slama added: “I watched as five minutes later he grabbed the buttocks of another young woman. … This was witnessed by several people at the event.”

You may read more about the allegations at the link.  And here’s my cartooning friend from Nebraska on the Pornhusker candidate. By the way, Ricketts also graduated from our High School!  ICK!!!!

We have more on the orange snot blob and his crime syndicate family as I’m writing this.  This is fresh off the virtual presses from the New York Times. “Judge Holds Trump in Contempt Over Documents in New York A.G.’s Inquiry. Former President Donald J. Trump was ordered to turn over materials sought by Letitia James, the New York attorney general, and will be fined $10,000 per day until he does so.

A New York judge on Monday held Donald J. Trump in contempt of court for failing to turn over documents to the state’s attorney general, an extraordinary rebuke of the former president.

The judge, Arthur F. Engoron, ordered Mr. Trump to comply with a subpoena seeking records and assessed a fine of $10,000 per day until he satisfied the court’s requirements. In essence, the judge concluded that Mr. Trump had failed to cooperate with the attorney general, Letitia James, and follow the court’s orders.

“Mr. Trump: I know you take your business seriously, and I take mine seriously,” remarked Justice Engoron of State Supreme Court in Manhattan, before he held Mr. Trump in contempt and banged his gavel.

Alina Habba, a lawyer for Mr. Trump, said she intended to appeal the judge’s ruling.

Still, the ruling represents a significant victory for Ms. James, whose office is conducting a civil investigation into whether Mr. Trump falsely inflated the value of his assets in annual financial statements.

Illustration by Victor Juhasz for Rolling Stone

So a few more stories about other thuggish clowns.  Wherever you see a thuggish clown, there will be a thuggish religious figure to give him a messianic complex.  This is by Tom Nichols, writing for The Atlantic. “Putin’s Unholy War. Putin, the Patriarch, and the corruption of Orthodox Christianity.”

For most of the Christian world, Easter is over. For Orthodox Christians, however, Easter week has just begun—and Russia, the largest Orthodox country in the world, is still relentlessly pursuing the invasion and barbaric destruction of its mostly Orthodox neighbor, Ukraine. In fact, the renewed Russian offensive in the Donbas, replete with day and night bombardment of mostly Orthodox, mostly Russian-speaking areas in eastern Ukraine, began just after Russians and Ukrainians observed Palm Sunday.

I note this because I, too, am an Orthodox Christian, and I am watching one nominally Orthodox nation try to slaughter another.

In most of my comments on the Russian war against Ukraine, I’ve tried, as best I can, to provide you with dispassionate analysis. But I hope this week you’ll allow me a few personal observations as I head toward Easter. I realize that sometimes the cold equations of political analysis can seem far removed from our emotions, and so I thought I would share with you some of my own.

Although my career was mostly spent as a scholar and Russia expert, it is difficult for any area specialist to be completely objective about the countries they study, because our lives end up unavoidably connected to the subject of our profession.

Nonetheless, whether friend or enemy, I have spent my life trying to understand Russia and its people. Now, like everyone, I am disgusted by Russian savagery. Fury grows in me each time I see the mutilated corpses and leveled homes—not only because of the sadistic violence, but also because I know that the Russian regime, in trying to destroy the Ukrainian nation, has destroyed a chance, at least for some years to come, for a better world.

And for what?

For the messianic dreams of a small man, a frightened and delusional thug leading a criminal enterprise masquerading as a government, who believes that he is doing God’s will.

You might be surprised at the last sentence, but Vladimir Putin really believes this. He thinks he’s on a mission. I’ll come back to this in a moment, but it’s a reality that too many in the West have either overlooked or chosen to ignore. And as much as I’d like to lay all of this mayhem on Putin’s shoulders alone, we now have to accept that his butchery of innocent people is either tacitly or openly supported by millions of Russians. Yes, there are brave Russians who have risked their lives to protest this war, but there is no way, any longer, to deny that Putin enjoys more support than any decent nation should give to such horror.

And so I grieve not only for Ukraine, but for the knowledge that no matter how this war ends, the era of hope that began in 1989 is over. Ukraine is now the scene of the largest conflict in Europe since World War II. NATO and Russia are openly enemies again. Nuclear war, for a time a forgotten abstraction, is a real danger.

Putin’s messianic madness is magnified by the blessings of the head of the Russian Orthodox Church leader for the invasion of Ukraine. This has split the church.  (Via WAPO)  This so reminds me of all the evangelicals who see Trump as some kind of messiah.  White Patriarchal Nationalism is just a potent poison wherever it manifests itself.

Whether warning about the “external enemies” attempting to divide the “united people” of Russia and Ukraine, or very publicly blessing the generals leading soldiers in the field, Patriarch Kirill has become one of the war’s most prominent backers. His sermons echo, and in some cases even supply, the rhetoric that President Vladimir Putin has used to justify the assault on cities and civilians.

“Let this image inspire young soldiers who take the oath, who embark on the path of defending the fatherland,” Kirill intoned as he gave a gilded icon to Gen. Viktor Zolotov during a service at Moscow’s Christ the Savior Cathedral in mid-March. The precious gift, the general responded, would protect the troops in their battles against Ukrainian “Nazis.”

One more clown to send in today.

If you haven’t gotten the idea that my post today is all about the clowns who want money and power and will do any schtick to get it, well, you know now.  Now, this has nothing to do with Musk’s diagnosis of having Autism Spectrum Disorder but I think we can see more than a bit of Narcissism in all the folks we read about today. I will leave Twitter if the Orange Cheeto and his hateful cult are allowed back on.  Free speech isn’t about lying or harassing people and calling them ugly names. I use my block and report button continually because I prefer not to see hateful people try to take over a discussion.

Twitter is said to be nearing a deal to sell itself to Elon Musk, according to The New York Times and other outlets, 11 days after the Tesla and SpaceX CEO shocked the industry by offering to buy the company in a deal valuing it at more than $41 billion.

A deal could be finalized as soon as Monday, according to the Wall Street Journal. Twitter declined to comment on the reports.

Reports that a deal is imminent come after Musk revealed last week he had lined up $46.5 billion in financing to acquire the company. Twitter’s board met Sunday to evaluate Musk’s offer to buy all the shares of the company he does not currently own for $54.20 a piece, a source familiar with the deal confirmed to CNN. The source said that discussions about Musk’s bid have turned serious.

Musk appeared to hint at the completion of a deal on Twitter on Monday when he tweeted, “I hope that even my worst critics remain on Twitter, because that is what free speech means.”

The potential sale agreement caps off a whirlwind news cycle that began less than a month ago, when Musk revealed he had taken a more than 9% stake in the company and ramped up calls for changes to the social media platform.

I just want quick access to breaking news as reported by the reporters.  Oh, well.  To me, there are critics and then there are damn liars with a mean ax to grind.  I want none of the latter.

What’s on your reading and blogging list today?


Sunday Reads: No LGB 🏳️‍🌈without the T 🏳️‍⚧️

Ok, I may get some flak for this…but I don’t give a fuck.

A couple days ago was Trans Day of Visibility. And I personally have to say, I fully support Trans rights. The sentiment of the image below is something I take to heart.

I don’t know what else to say about it. I don’t want to get into a big discussion about definitions of the word woman…or man for that matter. I have people in my life…that I love…who are gay, lesbian, queer, bi, trans and whoever the fuck they want to identify as…and I will support them in anyway that I can.

That is all I’m going to say on this subject.

Cartoons via Cagle:

H/T BB

Sad news:

Some disturbing news:

Ok, now we have to move on.

That is all I got for you today. This is an open thread, and I won’t be responding to anything Trans 🏳️‍⚧️ related. Thank you.

Here is some more Estelle Harris to get you going…


April’s Fools (Hint: Republicans)

Poisson d’avril,
1954, movie poster

Poisson d’Avril!!

I’m not much of a prankster–certainly not a merry one–but I do know a fool when I see one.  I can remember wanting to take the day off school a lot when I was a kid because boys do dumb things on April Fools Day if the powers that be let them. I’ve embraced the French Celebration more because it’s as close as we can get to the day’s origination. It’s an interesting back story.

For one thing, we do know that April Fools’ Day customs date back to at least Renaissance Europe, but it’s likely the tradition originated long before then.

Some historians have linked April Fools’ Day to the ancientRoman festival of “Hilaria,” where at the end of March, people would come together to commemorate the resurrection of the god Attis. It was a celebration of renewal in which revelers would dress up in disguises and imitate others.

It’s also possible that the medieval celebration of the Feast of Fools, where a mock bishop or pope was elected and church customs were parodied, could have inspired the day.

Other historians believe April Fools’ Day has its origins in the 16th century, when France switched from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian calendar.

The Julian calendar began in March with the spring equinox and was celebrated until April 1. By switching to the Gregorian calendar, the new year would now begin on Jan. 1.

News traveled slowly back then, and not everyone knew about or was willing to change when to celebrate the new year. Those who continued to celebrate in the spring were often ridiculed and made the butt of jokes.

Some pranks included having a paper fish placed on a person’s back as they were called “poisson d’avril,” or “April fish.”

One of the first knownreferences to this term, “poisson d’avril,” is found in a 1508 poem written by Eloy d’Amerval. The phrase itself doesn’t necessarily mean there was a holiday on April 1, but the idea of the “April fish” is that fishwere more plentiful in the spring and thus easier to catch. In other words, an “April fish” was more gullible than fish caught in other seasons.

Here’s a group that has my votes for today’s Fools.  I think Ted Cruz wins the cup though.

Ranger Betty

Our Hillary sisters in San Francisco introduced me to both the Rosie the Riveter/WWII Home Front National Historical Park and its 100-year-old National Park Service Ranger Betty Reid Soskin who retires today. Ranger Betty provided an interpretive program to the public based her life experience.

“Being a primary source in the sharing of that history – my history – and giving shape to a new national park has been exciting and fulfilling,” said Soskin. “It has proven to bring meaning to my final years.”

“The National Park Service is grateful to Ranger Betty for sharing her thoughts and first-person accounts in ways that span across generations,” said Naomi Torres, acting superintendent of Rosie the Riveter/WWII Home Front National Historical Park. “She has used stories of her life on the Home Front, drawing meaning from those experiences in ways that make that history truly impactful for those of us living today.”

Soskin’s interpretive programs at Rosie the Riveter/World War II Home Front National Historical Park have illuminated the histories of African Americans and other people of color, and her efforts demonstrate how her work has impacted the way the NPS conveys such history to audiences across the United States. Learn more about Betty’s story and watch one of her recorded programs.

I only wish I could’ve visited before this big day for her!

Okay, The King of the April Fools is in the spotlight for that gap in the White House Call Log during Insurrection Day. Reporters and the DOJ are doing the due diligence.

You may read that Twitter conversation or take a look at the Axios article.  Swan thinks he has a ‘new clue’.

On Jan. 6, 2021, during an apparent seven-hour gap in White House call logs that the House select committee investigating the attack is now trying to piece together, then-President Trump’s executive assistant, Molly Michael, was absent for most of the day, three sources with direct knowledge tell Axios.

Why it matters: Though sources said the Trump White House’s already spotty record-keeping operation had virtually collapsed by the final weeks of his presidency, Michael’s absence is a previously unreported detail that may play a role in explaining the incomplete records for a key stretch of time.

  • Her absence — coupled with the already shambolic state of record-keeping in the Outer Oval — also could complicate efforts to piece those details back together 14 months after that fateful day.

What we’re hearing: Keeping handwritten notes on Trump’s unscheduled meetings and callswas part of Michael’s duties when she took over as executive assistant from her predecessor, Madeleine Westerhout.

October 1966, Warehouse, Harriet Street, South of Market, San Francisco, California, USA — Ken Kesey’s Bus — Image by © Ted Streshinsky/CORBIS

I guess we’ll start hearing more on that. In other legal trouble for Trump news: “D.C. attorney general expands Jan. 6 lawsuit.  The suit is one of a handful of major efforts by those affected by the Jan. 6 Capitol riot to seek damages from its most prominent participants.”

This is from Politico‘s Kyle Cheney.

The attorney general of Washington D.C. has expanded his lawsuit against members of the Jan. 6, 2021 mob that played leading roles in the attack on the Capitol — including Oath Keepers leader Stewart Rhodes.

Karl Racine announced Friday that he had added six new high-profile figures to the district’s lawsuit, which already featured more than 30 defendants connected to the Proud Boys and Oath Keepers.

“Over the last few months, we have learned more about the horrors of January 6—including more about how the leaders of the two groups behind the attack urged members to use violence to overturn the outcome of a lawful presidential election,” Racine said in a statement. “We are seeking justice for the District, our democracy, and the brave law enforcement officers who risked their lives that day.”

In addition to Rhodes, Racine added Oath Keepers Edward Vallejo, Joseph Hackett, David Moerschel and Brian Ulrich. He also added Matthew Greene, a member of the Proud Boys who recently pleaded guilty for his role in the riot and is cooperating with prosecutors.

Racine’s suit is one of a handful of major efforts by those affected by the Jan. 6 Capitol riot to seek damages from its most prominent participants. Several Capitol Police officers have sued former President Donald Trump, his top aides and leaders of the Oath Keepers and Proud Boys as well. About 10 members of Congress filed lawsuits against Trump and his inner circle as well.

Roaring 1920s La Vie Parisienne 1929 Mon Poisson D Avril

You can read more at the link. Okay, more on the Republican Fools.

From Trumpland at The Daily Beast: “Inside Ginni Thomas’ ‘Insane’ Hiring Memos for Trump. Ginni Thomas’ suggested hires included known bigots and at least one suspected foreign spy, sources say.”

Years before she became one of then-President Donald Trump’s most prominent coup supporters, Ginni Thomas was already notorious in his West Wing for, among other things, ruining staffers’ afternoons by working Trump into fits of vengeful rage.

“We all knew that within minutes after Ginni left her meeting with the president, he would start yelling about firing people for being disloyal,” said a former senior Trump administration official. “When Ginni Thomas showed up, you knew your day was wrecked.”

Ever since she became a welcome guest at Trump’s residences, Thomas—an influential and longtime conservative activist, and wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas—had perfected a proven formula of enthralling and manipulating the president’s emotions and mood. On multiple occasions throughout the Trump era, Thomas would show up in the White House, sometimes for a private meeting or a luncheon with the president. She often came armed with written memos of who she and her allies believed Trump should hire for plum jobs—and who she thought Trump should promptly purge—that she distributed to Trump and other high-ranking government officials.

The fire lists were particularly problematic, as they were frequently based on pure conjecture, rumor, or score-settling, where even steadfastly MAGA aides were targeted for being part of the “Deep State” or some other supposedly anti-Trump coalition, according to people who saw them during the Trump administration. The hire lists were so often filled with infamous bigots and conspiracy theorists, woefully under-qualified names, and obvious close friends of Thomas that several senior Trump aides would laugh at them—that is, until Trump would force his staff to put certain names through the official vetting process, three sources familiar with the matter said.

During the Trump years, these memos would astonish various administration officials, including those working in the White House Presidential Personnel Office (PPO). Some of these officials noticed that as the Trump term went on, the Thomas lists would increasingly feature a disproportionate share of names more suited to an OAN guest line-up than any functional government. (To be fair, well before Ginni Thomas became a recurring visitor, Trump would routinely hire people because they had entertained or excited him, via Fox and other cable-news appearances.)

Well, isn’t that special?  There’s a lot more out there so go ahead and read it!  Between Ginni Thomas and the fetus hoarder, we ought to have a lot to learn about Republican women gone Mad.

However, we should focus on other things like Uncle Clarence Thomas himself and Mad Mitch.  This is from MSNBC’s Steve Benen. “The problem(s) with Mitch McConnell’s defense of Clarence Thomas.  Why is Mitch McConnell so eager to defend Clarence Thomas? It’s because the senator sees the far-right justice as an ally.”

One need not be a liberal ideologue to recognize that this is a legitimate ethics controversy. If the political dynamic were reversed, and the matter involved a left-wing justice and the jurist’s radicalized spouse, it’s a safe bet many of McConnell’s Republican colleagues on Capitol Hill would be calling for that justice’s impeachment.

So why is the Senate minority leader pretending this dynamic is benign? McConnell has already effectively told us why.

In fact, as we discussed in October, the GOP lawmaker appeared with the sitting justice at the Heritage Foundation and celebrated Thomas’ “jurisprudence on unborn life.”

These were difficult circumstances to defend. A conservative political group hosted an event for a conservative Supreme Court justice, who was in attendance for the celebration of himself. Congress’ most powerful Republican official — a man who has personally spearheaded a years-long campaign to politicize the federal judiciary — not only delivered a keynote address, he also specifically praised the justice’s work on a controversial issue that the Supreme Court will be considering this term.

Every time the high court considers abortion cases, McConnell said, “Justice Thomas writes a separate, concise opinion to cut through the 50-year tangle of made-up tests and shifting standards and calmly reminds everybody that the whole house of cards lacks a constitutional foundation.” The audience at the Heritage Foundation applauded in approval.

With this in mind, why is McConnell so eager to defend Thomas? It’s not because the senator sees the far-right justice as a neutral arbiter of unimpeachable integrity; it’s because McConnell sees Thomas as an ally.

Perhaps it is because they both love that dark money?

So, have a good start to the weekend!  Hopefully, we can all get some good spring weather going and take a few relaxing moments in the sun!

What’s on your reading and blogging list today?


Sunday Reads: History

History…will teach us nothing.- Sting

Something has been wrong with the WordPress editing app, so hopefully you can see the images from the Cagle website. This one above keeps on giving me problems as I try to embed the image..I don’t know why?

Now for some tweets and stuff:

Remember I mentioned the song Russians by Sting?

On Republicans:

Also this:

Meanwhile:

Here is another Sting song to close this thread:

If we seek solace in the prisons of the distant past 
Security in human systems we’re told will always always last 
Emotions are the sail and blind faith is the mast 
Without the breath of real freedom we’re getting nowhere fast 

If God is dead and an actor plays his part 
His words of fear will find a place in your heart 
Without the voice of reason every faith is its own curse 
Without freedom from the past things can only get worse 

Sooner or later just like the world first day 
Sooner or later we learn to throw the past away 
Sooner or later just like the world first day 
Sooner or later we learn to throw the past away 
Sooner or later we learn to throw the past away 

History will teach us nothing 
History will teach us nothing 

Our written history is a catalog of crime 
The sordid and the powerful, the architects of time 
The mother of invention, the oppression of the mild 
The constant fear of scarcity, aggression as its child 

Sooner or later 
Sooner or later 
Sooner or later 
Sooner or later 

Convince an enemy, convince him that he’s wrong 
Is to win a bloodless battle where victory is long 
A simple act of faith 
In reason over might 
To blow up his children will only prove him right 
History will teach us nothing 
Sooner or later just like the world first day 
Sooner or later we learn to throw the past away 
Sooner or later just like the world first day 
Sooner or later we learn to throw the past away 
Sooner or later we learn to throw the past away 

History will teach us nothing 
History will teach us nothing 

Know your human rights
Be what you come here for
Know your human rights
Be what you come here for
Know your human rights
Be what you come here for
Know your human rights
Be what you come here for

This is an open thread.