Short shrift.

Warning, folks: This won’t be long tonight. I woke up at 3:30 a.m. and never really got back to sleep. A 4 a.m. rousing is sort of my baseline for basic functionality the following day. I spent the day staring blankly at my laptop, sending wan emails and otherwise wishing I were dead. But I did my bike ride, because summer is short and wheezing is character-building. I can’t waste this season. Winter was so long.

So a short link salad today before I hit the keys face-first, OK?

I’m the world’s biggest fan of “The Wire” — how has this tautology supercut been out for more than two weeks and I’m just now hearing about it? I demand to know.

Men are an on/off switch, women are a rheostat. Nowhere is this more evident than the description of “female Viagra,” just approved by an FDA panel:

Viagra treats sexual dysfunction in men by increasing blood flow to the genitals. Flibanserin, on the other hand, targets the frontal cortex, in particular some key neurotransmitters involved in sexual desire: By increasing the flow of dopamine and norepinephrine, flibanserin helps women with hypoactive sexual desire disorder feel turned on; at the same time, the drug decreases levels of serotonin, which is associated with sexual inhibition.

I will not be taking this in my dotage, preferring the more traditional bourbon goggles.

Ted Cruz came to town for a fundraiser night before last. And made a Joe Biden joke. Funny! The day before Biden buried his son. Who ARE these people? It’s not like this is a secret.

Fading so, so fast. Have a good weekend, all.

Posted at 12:30 am in Current events, Same ol' same ol' |

56 responses to “Short shrift.”

  1. coozledad said on June 5, 2015 at 1:38 am

    Who are these people?

    And they aren’t going away, even if they start a ruinous war or two, or get caught with their prick in a child’s ass. A white trash wheel spun up from the Civil War out of the South’s bitterness and its canker suppuration of defeat and was given full legitimacy by Ronald Reagan, the new cracker Jesus.

    They’re goddamned undead.

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  2. David C. said on June 5, 2015 at 6:12 am

    Finding time to bike has been a chore this year. The weather has been too something – too rainy, too cold, too windy and I’m not kitted out for riding in bad weather. I compared last year’s log to this years and found I rode 19 days last May and only 9 this May. I did manage to beat last year’s mileage though only by 7 miles. Here’s to a better June.

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  3. alex said on June 5, 2015 at 6:38 am

    I suppose it’s only fitting that the biggest joke in American politics doesn’t know how to tell one.

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  4. Deborah said on June 5, 2015 at 7:31 am

    The link in Coozledad’s comment is quite damning of historical slave owners. Here’s more by the guy who wrote the book

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  5. Deborah said on June 5, 2015 at 7:37 am


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  6. adrianne said on June 5, 2015 at 7:57 am

    Cooze, excellent link to an excellent book. I saw Edward Baptist receive an award from the Sidney Hillman Foundation. His book is a tough read, but I’m keeping on.

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  7. beb said on June 5, 2015 at 8:15 am

    There’s so much more to the Ted Cruz-tells-a-joke story. For one, after the speech a reporter approached to ask if it wasn’t a little insensitive considering VP Biden was in the midst of burying his son, and Cruz walks away without answering. Keep it classy son of Rev. Raphael.

    Secondly, blogger Mark Evanier (NewsfromME) who seems to know everyone in Hollywood mentioned Cruz’s attempt at humor then adds, wasn’t that a Lewis Black joke from a few years back, only then it was about Dan Quayle. No confirmation yet whether Mr. Black came up with that joke. I’m sure that joke is to go up to someone an say “President Dan Quayle” rather than Vice-President Dan Quayle. Because he was vice-president; there’s no joke to that, but picturing him as the president is scarily funny.

    Echidne of the Snakes watched Megyn Kelly’s interview with the Duggars so we won’t have to.

    She makes a couple of observations, the first of which is that in no sense are the Duggars a normal Christian family. They are a cult with very bizarre ideas about families and raising kids.

    And Michigan wingnuts flip out over emergency training exercise. At times like this “I fear for all humanity (tm Godzilla)”

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  8. Julie Robinson said on June 5, 2015 at 8:23 am

    Well, now we know who the real a**hole is.

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  9. Jolene said on June 5, 2015 at 8:27 am

    More on the “Who are these people?” theme: Just heard Rick Perry, who yesterday announced himself as a candidate for the GOP presidential nomination, say, “What we have in this country came from God, not from the government.”

    Could there be anything more self-evidently untrue? Whether the political leaders of the past felt themselves to be inspired by God or not, the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Emancipation Proclamation, the 19th Amendment, and the Civil Rights Act of 1964 were all the work of men and women. It is these frameworks and laws that are the basis of our rights and opportunities, and they were all established by humans with vision and determination.

    I hate to hear people be stupid before 8:00 AM. It’s not a good way to start the day.

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  10. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 5, 2015 at 9:25 am

    The problem with that kind of attempt to theologize politics is that it’s like the environmental education game about where energy comes from . . . ultimately, everything goes back to the sun. Gasoline to fossil fuels to giant fern pollen beds to growth in ancient swamps to . . . the sun. And so on. (Milk on your cereal to cows to grass to the sun. And so on.)

    And beb, thank you. The Duggars represent no one but themselves, and the profit motive at work in media on the same principles as the fairground sideshow. We used to have Brother Jed Smock do his lawn preaching every spring at Purdue, and Christians of all sorts of traditions were united in wishing Jed would go somewhere else and peddle his unpleasantness. Which I gather, over the years, he did, traveling from campus to campus — apparently he did the south during the winter, not being a stupid nasty person.

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  11. Julie Robinson said on June 5, 2015 at 9:32 am

    Brother Jed was regularly pelted with eggs outside Ballantine Hall on the IU campus. Then he was especially nasty.

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  12. john not mccain said on June 5, 2015 at 9:56 am

    I missed seeing Lily Tomlin working out what would become Signs of Intelligent Life. It was my birthday and one friend had invited me to go along with her. The-thing-that-used-to-be-my-bff said he would never speak to me again if I didn’t go to a Jed Smock performance instead. I was a stupid 19 year old, but on the other hand we did have great birthday sex after. Religion does weird things to you.

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  13. alex said on June 5, 2015 at 9:56 am

    Ultimately everything goes back to the sun — especially Rick Perry, the first politician in history whose shoe leather never touched a sidewalk.

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  14. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 5, 2015 at 10:09 am

    By the way, I think this was posted here a few days ago, but is worth re-raising up the flagpole. Endlessly interesting to all of us who work with words and ideas, let alone leadership.

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  15. coozledad said on June 5, 2015 at 10:12 am

    The Duggars represent no one but themselves
    Until they’re phonebanking for Republican candidates and ant-gay legislation, or running on the Republican ticket.
    I think it’s fair to say they represent the whole of Arkansan/Justin Harris/Asa Hutchinson/Huckabee/Republican politics, which is indistinguishable from Denny Hastert/Mark Foley/ Jack Abramoff/Ralph Reed/Jeb Bush/ Ted Cruz/ Rick Perry/Marco Rubio/John Kasich Republican politics. The entire field is filthy with duggary.

    You gotta dance with them what brought ya. Even when it’s the Kiddy diddler dance.

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  16. Deborah said on June 5, 2015 at 10:37 am

    I keep thinking about that book review that Coozledad linked to, I’m probably going to have to read the book, but like Adrianne said it will probably be a hard read, because of all of the violence that will be described.

    I may be way off base, but if you read Marx (I haven’t done that since college) capitalism basically was based on slave labor, and still is. I mean what else can you call yanking jobs from Americans and exporting them overseas to very low paid workers. Or paying people here woefully substandard minimum wages. Capitalists strive to pay the absolute lowest for labor and extract the highest possible profit for themselves. Sure the “slaves” have more than the ones from history and hopefully they no longer get beaten but it’s still a mentality that says that people don’t matter, what matters is $$$. And the gap widens between the haves and the have-nots over time, it is inevitable under the capitalist system. It just is, look at what’s happening now.

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  17. brian stouder said on June 5, 2015 at 11:09 am

    request permission to revise and extend my remarks; Cooze’s link to the Foner review is superb, and makes one ponder anew the odd concept of “creation of wealth”, and the evolving constituency of that concept…

    but that’s for later

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  18. Judybusy said on June 5, 2015 at 12:22 pm

    I’ll add the book Cooz recommended to my must read list.

    Does anyone else here read Foreign Affairs magazine? I got an invitation to subscribe, and have received three issues. It’s dense reading, and I’m really appreciating the info.

    I won’t be online much over the weekend, and on Monday we take off with niece #2 for Costa Rica. See you all on the 15th if I survive ziplining.

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  19. beb said on June 5, 2015 at 12:26 pm

    Careful, Deborah and brian, you go on talking about how all capitalism is based on some variation of slave labor and people are going to think your a communist. But then Marx was inspired by the excesses of the Gilded Age and since we are in a New Gilded Age Marxist thinking is bound to happen.

    The trouble with “Religious Freedom” laws is that they are double-edged. Your right to stage an armed protest at a Islamic Mosque can be seen as intimidation based on a persons religion, which is an ennumerated civil right. A pair of congressmen are asking the Justice department to look into the recent protests in Arizona on this grounds.

    And speaking of civil rights violations, what about the school principal in Mississippi (It’s always someone in Mississippi…) who decided to press “disturbing the peace” charges against four people who whooped it up during their children’s graduation ceremony? It sound like someone is trying to teach a lesson and that lesson is “don’t mess with Massa.” When our daughter graduated we were asked to refrain from applause until everyone’s name was read. And of course some didn’t but it was easier to just go on than to stop the ceremony to have the noise-makers escorted from the building. And to have them arrested? That they’re black, he’s white and this is Mississippi says so much about this case.

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  20. beb said on June 5, 2015 at 12:27 pm

    Ziplining? Mary, Mother of God have Mercy on Judybusy!

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  21. coozledad said on June 5, 2015 at 12:53 pm

    Everybody knew about Denny ages ago. The Republicans knew, because Denny was part of their pervert-farming system. The Republicans want to keep the focus on the blackmail as the greater wrong.

    Keep fucking that chicken, boys. People will take power where they can find it.

    Jolene contacted news organizations, including ABC, but of course Hastert denied the allegations, so that was the end of that. Jolene was forced to accept that the man she believed had molested her brother, the man who rose to one of the most powerful positions in the entire US of A, was never going to be exposed or held accountable. After all, Hastert was supposed to be the good and moral and scandal-free Republican who would clean up his party’s mess.

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  22. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 5, 2015 at 12:55 pm

    I don’t think the Duggars represent Christianity more generally, but I’ll have to grant Cooze’s point on the Republican Party’s use of them. Like the Southern strategy, you end up dancing with the one you brought to the party whether you later claim you want to or not.

    On a more cheerful note, insults from 500 years ago, still fresh and scathing, thanks to Martin Luther!

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  23. Dorothy said on June 5, 2015 at 2:29 pm

    Being unable to get back to sleep after waking in the middle of the night seems to be the #1 subject of discussion among women my age, I swear. And it’s not just ladies – my husband has been afflicted by this frequently over the last few years. We’re the same age. It’s aggravating as all get out. We usually blame it on work worries, or (more rarely) family worries. But I dunno. It just seems like SO many people bitch about this, it makes me think it’s a natural consequence of hitting your 50’s. Is it any wonder come 8:30 or 9:00 at night we look like our parents did, head lolling to the chin, eyes fluttering open but mostly shut, while trying to keep up with some PBS show we have on the screen.

    judybusy I’m CONFIDENT you are the “cool” aunt of the family – amiright?!

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  24. Judybusy said on June 5, 2015 at 2:40 pm

    Ha, Dorothy, these girls are the only kids on both sides of the family. They have a total of three uncles, three aunts. These are my sister’s girls. One paternal aunt is developmentally disabled, and very sweet. The other paternal aunt is totally devoted to the girls and has also done lots of cool things with them. All uncles live out of state, so not a lot of opportunity to grow close.

    Beb, we’ll see if I can actually step off the ziplining platform…..

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  25. Suzanne said on June 5, 2015 at 2:58 pm

    Jed Smock-what memories of him standing outside Ballentine Hall, red faced, calling out the fornicaters-ah and the whoremongers-ah! Seemed to end every bad name with a verbal uptick. The son of a friend of mine was in journalism school at Mizzou a few years ago & did a story on old Brother Jed. I was surprised he was still around!

    I have honestly been surprised at the number of Christian friends who have jumped on the bandwagon that the liberal media is picking on the Duggers, although I think as the numbers of self-identifying Christians is shrinking, there is a “circle the wagons” mentality among even the more mainstream, sensible people.

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  26. alex said on June 5, 2015 at 4:19 pm

    Looking forward to SNL this week because I just know they won’t be able to resist the temptation of doing a skit where the Duggar daughters defend their brother’s actions by saying how much they enjoyed getting it on with him.

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  27. James said on June 5, 2015 at 4:28 pm

    Looking forward to SNL this week because I just know they won’t be able to resist the temptation of doing a skit where the Duggar daughters defend their brother’s actions by saying how much they enjoyed getting it on with him.

    The season is over.

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  28. LAMary said on June 5, 2015 at 5:05 pm

    appropos of nothing, M and M is filming a video down the hall from me here in the hospital.

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  29. Dexter said on June 5, 2015 at 5:23 pm

    Here’s a bulletin from Colorado: my grandson is driving to Las Vegas. Today he had a tire blow out, which puzzled him as he had put four new tires on in preparation for the trip. He couldn’t get the wheel off to change it and had to call a wrecker to have it towed in, where the tire guys told him he had not just had a simple blowout, his tire had been shot out by rifle fire. Cops rushed in and photographed the evidence and returned to the scene of the crime with a posse who canvassed all possible angles and miraculously found the rifle shell casing. Perhaps you have read about the current killer on the loose out there…my grandson’s car was the latest victim. He called his mom and told her he was getting antsy and wanted to just get the flying hell out of Colorado, pronto. I searched a few Colorado news sites but found nothing, so maybe the cops are sitting on this for now, who knows?

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  30. David C. said on June 5, 2015 at 5:54 pm

    That’s scary as hell, Dexter. Glad he’s OK.

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  31. coozledad said on June 5, 2015 at 6:32 pm

    From my neck of the woods: Judicial misconduct.

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  32. LAMary said on June 5, 2015 at 6:58 pm

    I think Colorado is a lot crazier now than when I lived there. I was there in the Rocky Mountain High era. Crunchy granola and all that shit.

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  33. susan said on June 5, 2015 at 7:10 pm

    Holy moly, Dexter. I’d be quaking in my boots for weeks after something like that. And looking over my shoulder and in the review mirrors and through the periscope implanted in the top of my head and at the inside reflections of my sunglasses. Yikes. I’m glad that asshole was a bad shot. Your poor grandson.

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  34. Joe k said on June 5, 2015 at 7:11 pm

    71 years ago right about this time, thousands of young men jumped into a black night filled with death and started the liberation of Europe, stop and give a little thought to the band of brothers from the 101st and 82 airborne and all the rest that made the ultimate sacrifice so we can enjoy the freedom to live as we do today.

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  35. Wim said on June 5, 2015 at 7:43 pm

    What possible difference can it make if we think about an historic event?

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  36. Dave said on June 5, 2015 at 8:48 pm

    Dexter, so glad that your grandson is ok, that’s scary, like the people who decide it’d be fun to drop a few concrete blocks off of overpasses.

    Wim, appreciating what they did, whether they wanted to or not. Appreciating that they succeeded, how would things gone had they not? YMMV.

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  37. coozledad said on June 5, 2015 at 9:54 pm

    D-day was the major casualty event for American forces during the war, followed by Okinawa.

    I resent its use as a patriotic litmus test, as the whole war featured incredible acts of murder, of incredible scale, precipitated by right wing nationalism. One can argue that Stalin was initially in bed with the Germans because Communism and Nazism are the same, but then one must be hospitalized, because Stalin murdered more communists than Hitler, and the communists saved the world’s ass. Watch this thing. It will change your life:

    Go out and hug an old Russian, even if they’re just an old dick.

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  38. Deborah said on June 5, 2015 at 10:15 pm

    Holy Cow Dexter, quite a scary event.

    Jeff tmmo, we used to sing a song in Walther League, “Marty, Marty Luther, pop of the Lutheran Church”. Good old Marty.

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  39. James said on June 6, 2015 at 4:57 am

    Go out and hug an old Russian, even if they’re just an old dick.

    I’d think most Soviet veterans of WWII live in Russia, so one would have to travel there. And if they don’t like hugs, maybe a fist bump will do.

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  40. Suzanne said on June 6, 2015 at 7:55 am

    Deborah or as we used to say in the newer iteration of Walther League called Youth Group (Early 70s when they were trying to “modernize”) – Good old Martin Luther. Good old Martin Luther. With the five and ninety theses, he cut the Pope to pieces. Oh, my. Those were not the the days…

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  41. Wim said on June 6, 2015 at 9:55 am

    All right, Dave: what possible difference does it make if we APPRECIATE deeds done in an historic event? Back in ’94 I rode a wide-bodied jet across the Atlantic in the immediate company of a bunch of guys in their VFW caps, heading to Normandy for the 50th anniversary of their day of days. They were pretty hostile toward facile sentiment and cheap jingo, and on their behalf, so am I. YMMV.

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  42. BethB said on June 6, 2015 at 10:39 am

    Coozledad, thanks for the link. I took the time to watch, and while it may not change my life, it certainly was enlightening worth a look.

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  43. Dexter said on June 6, 2015 at 12:33 pm

    That’s what mass hysteria can do. A second investigative team came to the scene of my grandson’s tire incident, pieced the evidence and lack-of-proof together, and proclaimed he had hit a solid object in the roadway, roughly the same diameter as the shell casing’s contents would have been, but no, I guess those local Colorado cops were on such high alert they wanted to get to the bottom of this maniac’s spree. But this time, false alarm,”…alright everybody, you can go home now…show’s over!”

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  44. Joe K said on June 6, 2015 at 12:41 pm

    9,000 killed on d-day, 14,000 at Okinawa, 19,000 during the battle of the bulge.
    Only trying to pay homage to the deserving, only a fool would somehow try to politicize their sacrifices.
    In upmost respect
    Pilot Joe

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  45. Basset said on June 6, 2015 at 1:10 pm

    On a totally different topic… the Nashville Sounds’ ambidextrous pitcher just made the big club:

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  46. Deborah said on June 6, 2015 at 2:53 pm

    I finally had the time to watch the video Coozledad linked to, if you haven’t yet watched it, stop everything and do so. A very well made and informative piece, definitely worth your time.

    I also highly recommend the movie “Salt of the Earth”, about the life and work of photographer Sebastião Salgado. We went to see it yesterday afternoon. It is mostly in black and white, lots of incredibly stunning still photography and narration by the photographer himself and Wim Wenders the German film maker. I can’t describe it effectively, just go see it

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  47. Deborah said on June 6, 2015 at 3:22 pm

    This will bring a tear to your eyes

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  48. Dexter said on June 6, 2015 at 5:51 pm

    Stuff I never think about at all:

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  49. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 6, 2015 at 6:45 pm

    Dexter, I have to observe that all sounds incredibly Protestant to me! But thanks for the schadenfreude moment.

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  50. Dave Kobiela said on June 6, 2015 at 6:48 pm

    Thank you Joe. I remember talking to our Old Man, and even though he wasn’t in the 82nd until after WWII, he had the utmost respect and admiration for those who served before him. I have noticed many friends of my daughter and son-in-law, (both active duty Army officers BTW),expressing their thanks and respect today also.

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  51. Jolene said on June 6, 2015 at 6:54 pm

    Deborah is right about Obama’s eulogy for Beau Biden. Very heartfelt and eloquent. Real emotion, not an official statement. Hunter and Ashley, Beau’s brother and sister also gave touching speeches. You can find them on the CSPAN website and won’t regret the time.

    I also liked this article about Joe Biden as a patriarch from the LA Times. Will make you wish he was your grandpa.

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  52. brian stouder said on June 6, 2015 at 10:47 pm

    It has been a very full weekend already, and it’s only half over.

    Pam drove our almost-17 year old daughter (and a few others) to Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport, so as to arrive there by 12:30 am this morning, for her flight to Houston, enroute to Guatemala, where she is now.

    A series of re-assuring photos and so on have come across Facebook, and so begins her week long stay in that emerald-colored corner of the world (she’s hoping to see some Mayan ruins at some point, while she’s there).

    Aside from that, here’s a nodding agreement to Joe K for his salute to the fellows who went forth on D-Day. We might quibble about his casualty numbers; Antietam was far and away the bloodiest day in American history, and the political result of that battle – the Emancipation Proclamation – certainly makes that battle the most indispensable to the freedoms we enjoy today, in the United States of America….but whatever.

    I’d bet mostly all the people at either place (and on either side) would much rather have been elsewhere on those days

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  53. Dexter said on June 6, 2015 at 11:00 pm

    Smarty Jones, Big Brown? Mere pretenders! American Pharoah was magnificent today as he led all the way in winning the Belmont Stakes and hence, the Triple Crown. I had chills all over watching it, and gave him a standing ovation from my TV room. I thought it would never happen again, ever.

    The Stanley Cup Final game #2 was also a helluva thing to watch. Tampa Bay won, but tension permeated the entire contest.

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  54. Deborah said on June 7, 2015 at 12:35 am

    I know this is old news but will someone explain to me something about the Duggar affair? Who went to the police when it happened? Did the Duggars themselves go to the police when they found out about the inappropriate behavior of their son? Or did someone else report it, like the babysitter? I’m confused. I really haven’t paid that much attention to it until I read something about the Fox interviews with members of the family. It doesn’t quite add up.

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  55. coozledad said on June 7, 2015 at 11:21 am

    The NC GOP has a new grifter in chief. He’s a “success mastery evangelist”. Just when you thought they’d get tired of the shit under their fingernails, they keep digging deeper into that crimer barrel:

    Here’s the high def version:

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  56. brian stouder said on June 7, 2015 at 12:35 pm

    Cooz, interesting videos. The second one is a great palate-cleanser, after the ridiculous first one.

    My son has the NASCAR telecast on, and it seems the drivers have gotten together, and want to address the NASCAR major-domo, with an agenda of changes.

    One empty-headed Fox Sports shill said to the other – in a stage-whisper ‘ain’t this ridiculous’ manner: “Is this a union??” – whereupon they shifted back into serious (as serious as they ever are, anyway) mode, and adamantly said no-no-no-no-no-no….making one wonder why this would be a joke?

    What’s the matter with a union? How is a union NOT a legitimate thing, while the exercise of raw power (by the people who simply snatched it up) IS?

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