Faire weekend.

Where has Maker Faire been all my life? I can’t believe it took us this long to find, and how did I — an individual acquainted with a fair number of youngish hipster types — miss it, along with the distinct Brooklyn/Detroit/steampunk-ish/sustainability vibe?

Got me. Note to self: Pay closer attention to the world around you.

In the meantime, this iPhone takes crappy pictures, sometimes. Here’s a couple other snaps of the dino-dragon, which was driveable:

Alan and I agreed that the design detail we liked best was the use of tires for its leathery skin. Other high points: The life-size mousetrap and, of course, the fire-breathing pony. Note the two hipsters running the pony, Pinky McHair and Mr. Kilt. I kept telling Alan he needs a kilt, but not some silly plaid one. One like the guy in the picture, in basic black, khaki or olive, like the pants he buys from Brooks Brothers. It’s hard for a guy to rock a kilt, but he could do it, because he’s stocky and hairy, which means his testosterone is not in doubt.

“OK,” he said. “I’ll wear it with plaid underwear.”

That would totally work.

The weather all weekend was hot and hotter and muggy and ick. I’m currently recovering from a couple hours of yard work, not even anything particularly strenuous, but done in the sort of heat that makes one grumpy and tired, it felt like a marathon. But after a few days of attention, the place is looking better, inside and out. And very shortly I will make the last cherry pie of the season. I am fully enjoying summer.

But I don’t have much to say, today, beyond general mourning over the debt deal, so let’s go quickly to the bloggage:

Another royal wedding. Now these are some English people — none of that pan-Eurotrash who showed up at the last one. It looks like the groom, a rugby player, had his nose relocated by a head butt. (Correction: At least eight head butts. Or whatever.) Fixing it would be a pussy move, however, so he wears it proudly. Is it just me, but is Auntie Camilla wearing the same fascinator she wore to her stepson’s wedding? And oh look, there’s Cathy Cambridge in yet another safe neutral. Looking at Princess Anne, it’s useful to remember that of all the athletes at the 1976 Olympic Games, she was the only one not required to submit to gender testing. (She was part of the British equestrian team.) Now look at her — the very picture of mature femininity.

The bride looks nice, but that’s to be expected. Note how she turns her head left to kiss the groom; a wise move, as going the other way would run her smack into that broken nose. I wish them much happiness.

From New York magazine, Frank Rich on the Murdochization of the US:

…a Times reporter who wrote a routine news story on a Fox News ratings lull was punished by having his headshot distorted into an anti-Semitic caricature worthy of Der Stürmer for display on the morning show Fox & Friends (a misnomer if ever there was one). Other victims have had it far worse, including the often-­defenseless obscure citizens who cross O’Reilly’s radar screen because they have views he abhors, at which point his producer stalks them for an on-camera ambush. (It was left to the Post, however, to trash a former O’Reilly Factor producer with whom he settled a sexual-harassment suit in 2004.) O’Reilly’s now-departed tag-team partner in Fox News vigilantism, Glenn Beck, excoriated the nearly 80-year-old CUNY sociologist Frances Fox Piven so often in the past few years (mostly for an essay she had written about poverty in 1966) that she had to fend off death threats. George Tiller, the Wichita abortion doctor who was called a “baby killer,” among other epithets, on 29 episodes of The O’Reilly Factor, was assassinated while at church in 2009.

Stay classy, Fox.

And finally, one from behind the NYT paywall, but maybe you’ve got the golden key:

The man behind all that hysterical anti-Sharia legislation is a Hasidic Jew in Brooklyn. One guy, with “a history of controversial statements about race, immigration and Islam,” wags this dog:

Working with a cadre of conservative public-policy institutes and former military and intelligence officials, David Yerushalmi has written privately financed reports, filed lawsuits against the government and drafted the model legislation that recently swept through the country — all with the effect of casting Shariah as one of the greatest threats to American freedom since the cold war.

Ugh, Monday awaits, and it’s going to be a very very long one. Enjoy yours.

Posted at 9:07 am in Current events, Detroit life |

63 responses to “Faire weekend.”

  1. coozledad said on August 1, 2011 at 9:24 am

    I guess the Bush Tax cuts were revenge for the US fighting the Republicans’ natural allies in WWII.
    Now Bush is saying it only looked like he was shitting his pants on 9/11 because he was “trying to project calm.”
    This almost has to be a typo. If he was projecting anything it was “clam”- damp, pink, and stupid.
    It’s something he picked up at the August Strindberg school of bullhorn.

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  2. prospero said on August 1, 2011 at 9:41 am

    I get unlimited NYT access with a Sunday only home delivery. Only problem is being up early enough on Sunday so that some bastard tourist doesn’t steal the paper. I caught one at it, and the fool said “I thought they were complementary, though he pronounced it more like the almost homonym. David Yerushalmi may be just one guy, but Sharia is one of the imaginary dead-horses Bachmann and that certifiable Louie Gohmert, who thinks Meskins and Muslims are interchangeable, beat all the time, and the entirely odious Daniel Pipes is full of this same bullshit and has been for years.

    Big content on AOL today: Al Pacino’s daughter, a star softball player at UCLA, got caught in a roadblock and blew over the limit. Wow, that is some quality content, eh? And 800 Americans went to see the Smurfin’ Smurfs over the weekend than attended Cowboys and Aliens. That is depressing. On the sunny side, there is a new version of Conan the Barbarian that looks far better than the lame-ass effort with the governator.

    Princess Katherine wore a UFO for a hat at somebody’s wedding, while bringing back the beige coat. Does this mean beige coats had gone out of style, or is this news because she is never supposed to wear the same thing twice? And that plaid underwear? That’s headgear, right? My uncle Paul wore a kilt, much to the embarrassment of my family. He was a traditionalist. When he went to Midnight Mass with us, he would make a grandiose show of kneeling to receive Communion with his tongue stuck out to the priest (and single malt on his breath), when all the rest of Catholicdom had been standing and receiving the Host in our hands for years.

    And you Maker Faire afficianados are going to want to plan to see Bellflower.

    edit: I am supposedly permitted to email access to Times articles, but I’ve no idea if sending them from the NYT site to a blog works. Pls. let me know if it doesn’t.

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  3. prospero said on August 1, 2011 at 9:47 am

    W may have looked like a bearded clam, and, as Jarvis Cocker says eloquently in the great song at the end of Children of Men (an awe-inspiring movie), Cunts Are Still Ruling the World. And I don’t think I’d be likely to eat a pink clam, but the joke is very funny.

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  4. Deborah said on August 1, 2011 at 10:37 am

    Good riddance July, glad it’s over. We had a small party on the terrace behind our building and let me tell you it was hot, right next to the lake too. My husband and I were twice the age of everyone at the party (my co-workers in the graphics group) I wasn’t having fun. Little Bird and I made a good salad of figs, feta (goat), and crumbled bacon, with a bit of balsamic drizzled over it. We got the bacon at the farmers market in Lincoln Park. Best bacon ever.

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  5. Maggie Jochild said on August 1, 2011 at 10:43 am

    I seem to have outraced Judybusy here to inform you that doubtless the kilt worn by Sir Ponyfumes was from Utilikilts
    made famous among my crowd by Dykes to Watch Out For. Utilikilts seem to be making inroads. The real question about Alan’s underwear now is: What clan tartan?

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  6. Connie said on August 1, 2011 at 11:24 am

    Following up on an earlier question about the OZ movie currently being filmed in metro Detroit. http://www.freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2011107220329 . Stars are ames Franco, Mila Kunis and Michelle Williams. When Demi Moore and Miley Cyrus were filming in the area last year, Demi lived in my neighborhood. I will start watching for stars at the grocery store.

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  7. LAMary said on August 1, 2011 at 11:39 am

    The groom’s mum looks like him in drag.
    Duchess Kate wore that dress before and the UK Mail has lots of photos of her wearing outfits more than once. This I think is considered a good thing, but I get no props for doing the same thing. The three year old black camisole I’ve got on today gets worn at least twice a week. Does anyone praise me for this? No.

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  8. Julie Robinson said on August 1, 2011 at 11:53 am

    All the Scottish laddies I met in England insisted no true Scot wore underwear with a kilt, but I never had the nerve to investigate their claims.

    Ditto Deborah on July. Hottest on record in FW, and a couple hours work on our yard barely scratches the surface. If I had to sum up the month with a word it would be *sweaty*.

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  9. Joe Kobiela said on August 1, 2011 at 11:57 am

    Them old rugby players clean up nice. I have been to a few rugby weddings in my days as a player, 18yrs wing forward fwrfc, and I have the feeling this one wasn’t as wild as a few I attended, but who knows? I doubt the bride threw up night train wine on her white dress like someone I knew,but I degress. I did like Jackie Stewards kilt.
    Pilot Joe

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  10. LAMary said on August 1, 2011 at 12:06 pm

    Julie, the question is: What is worn under a Scotsman’s kilt?
    Answer: Nothing, it’s all in fine working order.

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  11. Suzanne said on August 1, 2011 at 12:08 pm

    Wow. Zara is one of the best looking of the royal family. Go figure. And when did Harry mature into hottness? He used to be the frumpy looking one. Fergie’s girls kind of exude party b**ch crossed with the “I let myself go” body lines and poor fashion choices of the middle aged.

    This from one of W’s guys: http://www.cnn.com/2011/OPINION/08/01/frum.debt.republicans/index.html
    Maybe all common sense has not evaporated.

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  12. Julie Robinson said on August 1, 2011 at 12:24 pm

    :), Mary

    Did anyone else notice how often Zara was referred to as Elizabeth’s favorite granddaughter? Nice dig on Beatrice and Eugenie.

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  13. LAMary said on August 1, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    I think I’ve said it before but it looks like it’s so true. Beatrice and Eugenie are the new Patsy and Edina. You can get a Patsy and Edina refresher course on the Logo channel these days. Sweetie, darling. Between that show and RuPaul’s Drag U I get my fix of glam.

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  14. nancy said on August 1, 2011 at 12:38 pm

    I dunno, I think they look pretty beat up for two flowers of 22 and 21, respectively. I get the feeling if I came close enough to smell them, I’d get a whiff of 72-hours-old Guinness.

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  15. LAMary said on August 1, 2011 at 12:41 pm


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  16. LAMary said on August 1, 2011 at 12:42 pm

    It could be old Guinness, but I’m thinking it’s champers or voddy.

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  17. Mindy said on August 1, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    For you, Mary –

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  18. brian stouder said on August 1, 2011 at 12:52 pm

    Going just on my gut (as W himself might say) – I bet Mary ROCKS that black camisole.

    Debt deal? We’ll see…but this has been playing out like a Halloween movie, wherein the unkillable monster is the Tea Party id.

    (and I heard just enough of the fat fuck from Florida to learn that he’s unalterbly OPPOSED to the “deal”, so…the ominous music builds, as our gaze turns to the blissfully unaware Speaker Tangerine-man)

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  19. LAMary said on August 1, 2011 at 1:05 pm

    The black camisole is what it is. In winter it’s under sweaters or jackets and in summer it’s under lighter sweaters or jackets. I don’t think there’s any perceptible rocking going on.

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  20. prospero said on August 1, 2011 at 1:08 pm

    What Rupert Blackbeard has in common with the Koch Bros.:union-busting

    Why I need to win the lottery: hover bike.

    Debt ceiling deal explained by Ezra Klein. If it were done when ’tis done, then ’twere well
    It were done quickly. This seems as good an outcome as possible with the mewling and puking infantile assholes populating the Gratuitous Oposition Party.

    That’s a beautiful little Scots church, but it looks like a SoCal mission church.

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  21. brian stouder said on August 1, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    no no no.


    Not how it works.

    See – it’s the thought of the thing that induces the perceptible rock.

    (And besides, we fellers can be quietly perceptive of….many things*….)

    *I know, I know; there’s undoubtedly an inverse relationship to how ‘quietly perceptive’ a guy THINKS he is, compared to how much of an oaf he overtly IS…but we digress!)

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  22. moe99 said on August 1, 2011 at 1:36 pm

    As a commenter on the Balloon Juice site notes, these trillions in cuts are phased in over 10 years and don’t start until 2013. If Republicans lose control of the House and Dems retain control of the Senate, they can be undone. But it would take a lot of work. And cooler heads.

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  23. Jolene said on August 1, 2011 at 1:45 pm

    Mindy: That song is hilarious, and I needed a good laugh today. The debt ceiling deal is depressing as hell. Have been thinking I need to get more involved in the 2012 campaign than I was in 2008, but today I’m having a hard time thinking of what I might say to persuade a voter to choose Obama. Probably should focus on congressional elections instead to try to reduce the number of assholes that Obama, if he wins, would have to deal with.

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  24. beb said on August 1, 2011 at 1:52 pm

    Good riddance July, glad it’s over But Deborah, August is always hotter than July. If July was bad (and it was) then August is just going to be worse.

    Julie, the question is: What is worn under a Scotsman’s kilt?
    Answer: Nothing, it’s all in fine working order.

    AS I recall Sean Connery once answered “Your wife’s lipstick.”

    As soon as I read LAMary’s comment, I knew Brian Stouder would respond with something like this I bet Mary ROCKS that black camisole. BS is so in a rut.

    For a while I thought BO would end up like Jimmy Carter, a well-meaning but ultimately failed president. Now I think the comparison has to be Herbert Hoover – the man who made the Great Depression worse. I will cheer every Democrat who votes against this shitpile of a compromise.

    Cmdr Taco from Slashdot.com was at Maker Faire and posts these pictures

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  25. Bitter Scribe said on August 1, 2011 at 1:56 pm

    Jolene: Good idea. We had a perfectly good Democratic congressman, a smart guy (he was a nuclear physicist–no, really) and we replaced him with a smug, fat-faced TeaTurd. I rang doorbells for the Democrat, but no go.

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  26. Deborah said on August 1, 2011 at 2:12 pm

    Beb, in Chicago normally July is the hottest month. The beginning of August can be horrible but by the end it starts to cool down.

    I’m disappointed in the debt deal, but I’m going to be really relieved when this whole thing is over no matter which way it goes. Obama is still my man, I honestly don’t think he had any other choice. Hopefully he’ll do something amazing by Nov 2012, like turn the jobs situation around.

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  27. Deborah said on August 1, 2011 at 2:34 pm

    Before you find fault with Obama, read this http://talkingpointsmemo.com/archives/2011/08/another_take_5.php?ref=fpblg

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  28. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on August 1, 2011 at 2:47 pm

    The problem with conservative authoritarianism is that it deeply desires a strong commanding figure to take the podium and tell other people what to do. Liberal authoritarianism wants people to *want* to do what they think they ought to do, even if they’re already doing it, but can be sloppy about means and ends. Most libertarian conservatives just don’t want to pay for what they don’t want other people doing, whether they’re doing it themselves or not.

    What gives the Tea Party faction plenty of foot soldiery, while not actually having many troops under oath or on the payroll, is that there’s plenty of people across the country who simply think it’s too easy for the federal & state governmental units to borrow money/go into debt, and don’t much care about the origin of the indebtedness (wars, benefits, salary hikes for public employees, bridge inspection), they just want less of it. Given that the Tea Party is the only group selling their gas on a long, lonely stretch of highway with the needle looking to be on “E,” they’re pulling in and filling up, but there’s no real brand loyalty there.

    2012 is still anyone’s to lose. I expect an Obama second term largely because the Republican ability to put up self-igniting candidates is still strong. Until we have some kind of coherent philosophy of government from the national perspective that can motivate a cross-section of voters, it’s going to continue to be a “who can throw this election away first” competition.

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  29. MarkH said on August 1, 2011 at 2:51 pm

    “hysterical”? “imaginary”? Can’t happen here? Judgment calls, perhaps. Certainly, that’s what the British thought as well. Here’s just the latest since sharia became law of the land in the UK:


    This could present quite a law-enforcement dilemma. Just how much sovereignty is expendable? Read the entire article; disturbing. LAMary, your in-house brit must have an opinion on this, no?

    Plaid kilts are “silly”? Okay…that’s a lot of centuries of silliness. They are highly functional, which is why utilikilts were born. As Maggie posted (same as I did last year) they are catching on, especially among construction workers (the more secure kind, I’m sure). One of my best friends here is of scottish descent, has a black and a tan utilikilt as well as two traditional plaid and wears them frequently. The turnout at our yearly Scottish festival, coming up in three weeks, is great.

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  30. Jolene said on August 1, 2011 at 2:55 pm

    We have a senatorial contest here that is currently being called a toss-up. George Allen, who embarrassed himself w/ his “macaca moment” is attempting to regain the seat that he lost to Jim Webb. Webb unfortunately, is retiring. Given the Republican lean of Virginia, Webb is a good person to have as a Democratic senator. Both his conservative leanings and his military past make him acceptable to Repubs, and they also make him someone whose views on national security are listened to by Republicans in the Senate. His main achievement as a senator, I think, was reforming veterans’ benefits, but he had also begun working on prison reform. I had been hoping that, as a conservative Democrat, he would have the right kind of cred to make this a national issue. Our policies regarding imprisonment are completelt out of whack and hugely expensive; there’s a lot of good to be done, in both humanitarian and economic grounds, in that domain.

    When he decided to retire, Obama pressed Tim Kaine, our most recent ex-governor, to run against Allen for Webb’s seat. He is an OK guy, but I don;t think he built up much of a record of achievement in his one term as governor.

    The odd thing is that it doesn’t seem as if either Kaine or Allen wants the job. They are both executive types rather than legislative types. But, whether it makes sense or not, that’s the choice we are going to have.

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  31. Sue said on August 1, 2011 at 3:07 pm

    Now remember, folks, Wisconsin now has voter suppression legislation in place because of all the voter fraud/election fraud/funny business perpetrated by all those nasty Democrats and their cigarette-accepting minions. Here we have something on a seemingly larger scale, not for the first time either, and although it happened over the weekend, as of 2 p.m. today websites of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Wisconsin State Journal and Appleton Post-Crescent hadn’t picked up on it yet:

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  32. Bruce Fields said on August 1, 2011 at 3:55 pm

    “Here’s just the latest since sharia became law of the land in the UK:”

    Har. If the best evidence the sharia-hysteria crowd can find is a rogue poster campaign by a preacher in another country, I think I’ll continue not worrying about this one….

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  33. moe99 said on August 1, 2011 at 4:25 pm

    There is no sharia law passed in the UK. That is one small religious group headed up by a reformed British libertine (nothing worse than that), taking the law into their own hands. I don’t think that works either here or in the UK. One wonders what is really going on there.

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  34. Linda said on August 1, 2011 at 4:52 pm

    Deborah–Don’t forget that in 2013, women’s preventive health medicine will be covered by insurance. Including birth control. Please, nobody tell me that would happen if any Repubs were in charge of the show.

    Of course, I am less disappointed in BO because I never thought he was truly left, and am surprized that anyone who read Audacity of Hope thought he was. But he has a brain, and is not as crazy as a shithouse rat, which has him 2 up on the Republicans currently running for his job.

    Sue–I notice that many Wisconsin papers don’t run these types of stories. Are they that browbeaten?

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  35. MarkH said on August 1, 2011 at 4:59 pm

    Moe, you are flat wrong. Muslims can now legally settle civil matters amongst themselves in sharia courts outside of UK law and no matter how much it conflicts with it. The kook Choudary’s poster campaign actions are an extension of this. Please read:


    Here is another view from the Guardian:


    None of this is going down too well in the UK and bears watching, that’s all I’m saying.

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  36. Sue said on August 1, 2011 at 5:15 pm

    Linda, any Madison paper is automatically considered too lefty for the rest of the state, so when they don’t cover something like this it’s a bit of a surprise. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has been all over the map, endorsing Walker then expressing surprise when he immediately did some of the things they should have seen coming, and that kind of coverage and editorializing has been going on pretty much since the election. I don’t know how anyone reads the MJS, they seem to want to convince everyone they are on the other side. I’m not sure about some of the other papers; I have heard that papers in the recall areas have editorialized against some of the more ridiculous stuff (an Oshkosh paper pretty much called Randy Hopper a liar for one of his campaign statements, for instance).
    I’m not sure how important newspaper coverage is for the basic stuff anyway, because really, people have already made up their minds. But this kind of nonsense really should be covered, especially when fear of ‘those people’ has led to legislation that could conceivably affect election outcomes for years to come.

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  37. brian stouder said on August 1, 2011 at 5:23 pm

    Mark, I call bullshit on that one.

    A poster campaign?


    How many posters/stickers have I seen, proclaiming Obama to be a commie, and/or caricatured as The Joker, and/or as a closet jihadist (the fat fuck from Florida continually reminds us that this budget deal is just in time for Ramadan – which he apparently thinks is a major insight because…..even the Republicans in congress are jihadists?)

    These dire links of yours point to froth and frippery, all of which amounts to nothing. You show me enforcement of these “zones”, against non-Islamic folks, and without police reaction, and THEN you have something.

    Otherwise, you seem to be counseling fear of graffiti.

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  38. Suzanne said on August 1, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    I don’t really see that allowing people to have their own relgious courts which use Sharia law to settle internal differences is much different than allowing the Amish or Orthodox Jews to do so, which, if I’m not mistaken, they do.

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  39. Scout said on August 1, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    I’ve been trying to wrap my brain around “the deal” today and what it means for the future prospects of Pres O. From Nate Silver:

    >If Democrats read the fine print on the debt deal struck by President Obama and Congressional leaders, they’ll find that it’s a little better than it appears at first glance.

    That’s not to say that the deal is a good one for them. It concedes a lot to Republicans, and Democrats may be wondering why any of this was necessary in the first place. But the good news, relatively speaking, has to do with the timing and structure of the spending cuts contained in the deal.

    First, the timing: the cuts are heavily back-loaded, so the deal is unlikely to have much direct effect on the economy in 2012.<

    Having the TPer's, a relative minority, holding this whole negotiation hostage was ugly to watch. We can only hope that TP voters were paying attention to this fiasco and feeling buyer's remorse. What I don't get is how taking a stand against entitlements when 70% of the country is for them translates into a long range winner for the GOP.

    Even if we concede that the TP faction won this battle, how is it they haven't shot themselves in the ass with voters? Maybe someone can 'splain this to me.

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  40. Kirk said on August 1, 2011 at 5:40 pm

    Amish communities in the U.S.A. are allowed to determine some civil matters according to their religious dictates, though they’re limited. Divorces must go through the regular court system, and once a lawsuit is filed in the regular court system, it cannot be withdrawn so it can be handled according to amish rules. Some amish people in eastern Ohio sued their amish investment manager, who embezzled from them, and then tried to take it back and make it a religious matter. The courts said no way.

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  41. prospero said on August 1, 2011 at 6:11 pm


    The cuts are backloaded, with a trigger, and they are mandated by the deal to come in the first wave from “security spending”, which includes the military. If the trigger kicks in, more than half the spending cuts come from the Pentagon alone, and none from Medicare, Medicaid nor SS. In effect the Greedy Oleaginous Plutocrats were put in a position of cutting spending on the troops to protect hedge fund managers’ immense tax break (at least $4trillion in the next ten years) If people in Red States with big military presences and local impact from military bases are even marginally less gullible than they seemed in ’10, Republicans are losing the house back this time., that is going to play like a Parliafunkedelictment Thang concert in red states. The best explanation of the deal I’ve seen is from Ezra Klein. Guy looks like Jimmy Olsen, but he’s an ace reporter on Federal government, particularly finance.


    And next time somebody mentions Sharia to me (isn’t Sharia law a redundancy?), I’m going to slap ’em silly and ask them what they think about Norquist law, or FAMiLY LEADER law. I think it would hold up in court to charge the dumbass bastards that sign those things with treason under Article III, Section 3, particularly the Norquist bullshit.

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  42. Dave said on August 1, 2011 at 7:00 pm

    This certainly has nothing to do with the far more important timely topics being discussed today but there are three or four of us here who are (proud?) alums. Finally, top of the list!
    Somewhere, it runs in my memory that the school reached number one back in the seventies sometime.

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  43. prospero said on August 1, 2011 at 7:14 pm

    Dave, as alumnus of last year’s flagship, UGA, I say Congratulations.

    Vote fraud. Bullshit. Vote suppression. Republican specialty. This is flat out illegal, and somebody, preferably David Koch should be in jail.

    Can anybody explain why Feingold has benched himself? Disgust?

    Illuminating piece on the bullshit Congressional Republicans pulled in the last two months. This is straightforward, unquestionably destructive behavior. Nobody can claim with any credibility this wasn’t monumentally irresponsible and stemmed from a single motive: get rid of the brown President. There is no other logical explanation for screwing the US economy the way they’ve done. I’ve lost an average of $1<0/share on my mutual funds since July 1, and I'm sure others have had the same experience, and I attribute market losses to the instability engendered by the GOP holding the full faith and credit of the USA hostage. I' also sure as hell this situation has put a damper on new jobs. Republicans didn't even do this for idealogical reasons. It was all to flummox Obama. That is treasonous behavior any way you look at it.

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  44. Jakash said on August 1, 2011 at 7:17 pm

    Re: “one from behind the NYT paywall.” Nancy, you’ve made several references to us potentially not being able to read such pieces from links to the NYT. I was under the impression that even lowlifes (such as myself) with no subscription could read things linked to on blogs like this to their hearts’ content. Only actually opening articles at the NYT website starts racking up your 20 free articles a month. Anybody know if I’m in error about this?

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  45. moe99 said on August 1, 2011 at 7:22 pm

    MarkH, read the first article, and here’s the money paragraph for me:

    Under the act, the sharia courts are classified as arbitration tribunals. The rulings of arbitration tribunals are binding in law, provided that both parties in the dispute agree to give it the power to rule on their case.

    So, like arbitration, both parties have to agree to the jurisdiction of the sharia court.

    Oh, and on a totally different point, looks like there is some voter fraud going down in Wisconsin. But it seems to be coming from the Republican side of the ledger. I am shocked, shocked I tell you!


    Oh, and the Republican congressperson really knows how to turn a phrase:

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  46. Suzanne said on August 1, 2011 at 9:20 pm

    Ok, so I don’t know my Amish law. 🙁

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  47. Kirk said on August 1, 2011 at 9:27 pm

    No, Suzanne, I think you know what you’re talking about. I was just stating what I knew, which I thought just slightly expanded on what you said.

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  48. Deborah said on August 1, 2011 at 9:43 pm

    I just heard about Gabriele Giffords showing up for the vote today. That was really moving to me even if it may have been calculated theater. I hope she is right by Obama’s side when he signs the bill into law.

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  49. Julie Robinson said on August 1, 2011 at 9:43 pm

    Gabby Giffords came to the House and voted in favor of the bill to raise the debt ceiling. While I suspect she still has a long, long way to go, it’s a day I didn’t think would every happen at all. Tonight I’m pleased to have been proven wrong. http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2011/08/01/138906476/house-approves-bill-to-raise-federal-debt-limit?sc=fb&cc=fp

    Edit: Deborah scooped me!

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  50. brian stouder said on August 1, 2011 at 9:55 pm

    It was great to see; a genuinely unifying moment when all members of congress stood up and cheered and applauded their colleague. If it was a stunt, it was a spectacularly good one!

    And, not for nothing, but here’s what Fort Wayne had to say about the congressional grid-lock and still looming (for the moment) debt crisis:


    I’m not sure what Diane Sawyer and Hillary Rodham Clinton see in Sarah’s Diner, but that venue drew them both (separately) when they visited.

    Powers Hamburgers or the Coney dog place or Don Halls or Casa D’Angelos would be much more authentically Fort Wayne, I think….but what do I know?

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  51. MarkH said on August 1, 2011 at 9:55 pm

    Moe, let’s go back to the first sentence in your post #32, which I will concede. The UK has not enacted and sharia law, per se. The UK is allowing it to coexist alongside sovereign law, and go unchallenged. As Kirk points out, the Amish are under restrictions as per US law, not so with this deal in the UK. Is it OK with anyone here that in marriage or divorce or other domestic issues, the woman is at a clear disadvantage going in to these courts? Their law is law, and these court proceedings are closed, held in secret. The job of democratic sovereign nations is to provide equal protection under the law is it not?

    And, Brian, call bullshit all you want, but read the article and not just the posters. These guys may seem like two-bit thugs, and neighborhood gangs are nothing new in the UK. But the motivation behind this movement is something completely different. The article does assert that the police are taking these threats against the public seriously, so we’ll see. As I said above, this provides quite a law enforcement dilemma for the UK.

    Prospero, shoot your best shot. But, do you understand everything in that Quran you say you have? Sharia law a redundancy? Maybe. But don’t try to go against it in Saudi Arabia.

    EDIT — Yes, it was indeed great to see Gabriele Giffords on the floor today. And completely agree with Moe @51.

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  52. moe99 said on August 1, 2011 at 9:55 pm

    What’s interesting about Gifford’s appearance and vote is that it forced the House members to stop behaving like little kids (each party wanted the other party to vote first) and behave like adults.

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  53. nancy said on August 1, 2011 at 10:01 pm

    Brian, that was the biggest mashup of nonsense and non sequiturs I’ve seen in a while. Why wasn’t Karen Francisco ID’d as an editorial writer for one of the dailies? What was that silliness about family dinner? And were those not the dumbest TV reporters ever? Who says people in the Midwest are all farmers? I’m speechless.

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  54. alex said on August 1, 2011 at 10:52 pm

    Powers Hamburgers or the Coney dog place or Don Halls or Casa D’Angelos would be much more authentically Fort Wayne, I think….but what do I know?

    And so would the homeless drag queen trying to run for city council (who you might run into in one of those places). Diane Sawyer didn’t shame us too bad, really.

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  55. brian stouder said on August 1, 2011 at 10:55 pm

    I was taken aback by Ms Francisco’s stealth ID, too! Did they caption her simply “resident”?

    Arguably, she’s one of the most important voices (and most important women) in northeast Indiana, leading opinion on several crucial issues – not least of which including public education versus the barbarians at the gate who don’t just support “school choice” (via vouchers), but indeed who are engaged in outright fraud!

    The Journal Gazette has been particularly enlightening about the Imagine schools (for one example), and several Francsco-signed op-ed pieces have outlined the byzantine financial arrangemments whereby cash flows into the private schools and thence to paying “rent” to privately held, for-profit real-estate investment groups based in other states.

    But, Citizen Francisco might have been a left-handed compliment, eh?

    (aside from that – ABC’s report was indeed a mashup; I suppose it was intended as a smoothie…or at least a chance for Ms Sawyer to get out of the office and meet the little people in fly-over country)

    edit – I looked in again, and they called Ms Francisco “Indiana resident”! That’s rich, isn’t it? – they demoted her down to junk-mail status! And – Ms Sawyer’s wardrobe is downright odd. I can report that Sunday it was pretty miserably HOT – and the woman has a black long-sleeve shirt on, and a sweat-suit jacket wrapped on her waist! Was she “slumming”?!

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  56. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on August 2, 2011 at 12:02 am

    I’m glad y’all have made me aware of the pending Amish takeover of our court system. This is troubling — I might have to eat head cheese, having successfully convinced my mother even in 1969 that this would constitute child abuse, no mater what her mother did with the head of a cow in a double boiler.

    Mark, the implication is that arbitration, or ADR (alternative dispute resolution) in Great Britain through a sharia system is suspect because of the implicit and explicit coercion inherent in Moslem culture, especially regarding women. ADR does propose a basic ethic of autonomy for both parties, and as such it’s a matter of concern. Contrariwise, I’d hate to stipulate ab initio that any Moslem woman who agrees to work through arbitration has been coerced to do so. The framework has some work to do, but I’d also state that Appalachian women often have a hard time maintaining true autonomy in a mediation with a former spouse/partner, and a mediator has to be particularly sensitive to the context to know if the mediation should continue, or if they should refer back to the bench. While imams are unlikely to make such a a call, it’s not as if a party (such as the woman in a custody/visitation case) loses all future right to litigate should they have regrets later. If that’s the case (loss of future rights), then I’d be against sharia based ADR. But I’ve not seen that angle presented.

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  57. jerry said on August 2, 2011 at 4:43 am

    One or two thoughts from the UK re Sharia and the piece in the Mail.

    First up you must recognise that the Mail tends to hold a fairly right wing position – it tends to be anti-immigration and rather isolationist. (Historically they have the shame of supporting Hitler in the 1930s).

    Second, as has been mentioned by others. This is a group of unrepresentative Muslims going round putting up notices with no sign that they have the resources to support them. This doesn’t deny that there are Muslims here in the UK who would like to see a Caliphate established across the whole world – I guess they exist in the US as well.

    Third, I believe the existence of Sharia “courts” is undesirable – I doubt that all the women attending them do so of their own free will. However, the law permits these arbitration tribunals, just as it does Jewish Beth Din courts which I also find undesirable. Civil law should be paramount and I wouldn’t be surprised to see some sort of action to control these religious courts – although I’m not holding my breath.

    And I have to say that here in the London suburbs I see plenty of people drinking, smoking, listening to music and going to concerts. I can’t personally vouch for drugs or prostitution but doubt that they have disappeared either!

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  58. Julie Robinson said on August 2, 2011 at 8:10 am

    Ditto on all the above comments re Ms. Sawyer’s FW visit. We also noticed that more time was spent on previewing the segment than the actual segment. At every commercial break there was a lengthy promo. Added together, it was enough time for an in-depth report. Also, at the beginning of the report FW was discussed in the category of small towns, although later she reported that we are the 74th (I think) largest city.

    But, what do you expect, it’s TV news. Right now if you go to the INC website and click on national news, the headline is “Obama says time is running out for debt deal”.

    Someone asked if Sawyer was here to interview the Dilley sextuplets. One story I read said she was in Indianapolis earlier in the day for that very reason.

    Alex, I don’t think that candidate would make an attractive drag queen. He must have to trowel on the makeup.

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  59. alex said on August 2, 2011 at 8:13 am

    Re: the Sawyer piece, I think the local TV reporter was feeling a tad defensive about having landed in a media market where the yutzes elect people like Marlin Stutzman and Mike Pence. Who’s she to say we’re not a bunch of ignorant hicks? Her powers of analysis will take her far, I’m sure. As for anyone Sawyer taped besides Karen Francisco, I did not hear one comment to suggest they were the least bit informed or interested, but that doesn’t mean Sawyer didn’t round up a representative cross-section of citizens. The woman lamenting people not coming together at dinner time probably thinks it’s government’s proper role to do something about it.

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  60. Sue said on August 2, 2011 at 8:49 am

    Wisconsin Election/Voter Fraud update:
    Dem robocalls are giving a late voting date for the Kapanke recall. No information on if these calls were sent only to Republicans, but the Dems have acknowledged that the calls went out and the date has been corrected.
    “Block parties” in Milwaukee this weekend sponsored by a buncha lib/union groups may have broken the law by providing free food and fun along with shuttle rides to City Hall.
    Still not much info or outrage on the fake/late absentee ballots mailed to Democrats by AFP. AFP is saying oopsie, wrong date, sorry.
    I can’t wait until this is over, except it’s not going to be over.

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  61. Suzanne said on August 2, 2011 at 10:31 am

    Re: the woman on the news clip who wants us all to just eat dinner together. Could this be the start of a new political party? We already have the Tea Party; now, perhaps, the Dinner Party.

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  62. prospero said on August 2, 2011 at 10:39 am

    Mark, when I said Sharia law is a redundancy, I meant that the term Sharia is the Muslim term for the religious based law that supposedly governs Muslim life and behavior. It’s like Fox broadcasting the MLB Baseball game of the week. Or getting cash from an ATM Machine.

    As for the Koran. It’s as extremely easy to find an OT passage that puts women in a bad situation or talks about killing people that don’t share your beliefs as it is in the Koran. The idea that there is some insidious plot afoot to taint the American legal system to allow for stoning adulterers is nuts, as in paranoid, I’m sure Michele Bachmann believes it, because she does seem to be unbalanced. The likelihood of this happening in America is nil. And can anyone actually identify the perpetrators of such a plot? You got it. Those nutcases with the posters in England.

    This whole thing is a ridiculous scare tactic intended to mobilize the booboisee against immigrants, and to bind bigots in some exceptionally virulent and ignorant bigotry. It’s almost exactly analogous to Lee Atwater’s Willie Horton propaganda. In the first place, all of this implies that there is some invidious monolithic Islam, which is ridiculous on it’s face. But politicians and idealogues can sell that shit to Murricans that are ignorant of Muslim reality, while being convinced they know everything they need to know from listening to Glenn Beck on the subject.

    And those bogus ballots in Wisconsin, they were mailed specifically to registered Democrats. Republican operatives have served or are serving jail terms for using exactly this dirty trick in several states, including FLA, NY and Ohio. Robocalls? Anybody that doesn’t hang up immediately, or takes anything in a robocall as fact, should probably not be allowed to vote anyway. This creepy tactic should be illegal, if it actually isn’t already under current law.

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  63. Dave said on August 2, 2011 at 11:11 am

    I’ve wondered about the attraction to use Sara’s myself and think its a logistics strategy, as much as anything. It’s convenient to I-69 and not that far from the airport, and, on tv, it looks like the kind of diner where the folks in flyover country might gather.

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