High summer.

It was a perfect summer night for baseball, if not blogging, and the boss sprung for a suite:

I left at the bottom of the sixth, with the Tigers down 3-1 to the Royals. It didn’t bode well when the very first pitch of the game was a homer for K.C., but is it possible to have a bad time at the ballpark on a gorgeous July night, and in a suite, no less?

Meanwhile, some shit happened in Washington. And in Youngstown, I gather from Twitter. And let’s not even discuss the poor Boy Scouts. No, let’s.

Because it’s Wednesday, and this is all I have.

Posted at 12:04 am in Current events |

99 responses to “High summer.”

  1. alex said on July 26, 2017 at 12:34 am

    Can’t believe I’m up this effing late. Trying to get my Airport Express to quit dropping the signal every few minutes. Hooking it via ethernet to a Linksys range extender that has IP conflicts when I join it to my network. I could just effing scream!

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  2. Mark P said on July 26, 2017 at 12:39 am

    It’s time to consign the Boy Scouts to the trash heap of history. Apparently they are a natural constituency of Trump. They cheered at the right time and booed at the right time. What’s next? A merit badge for pussy grabbing?

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  3. James Moehrke said on July 26, 2017 at 12:59 am

    Following on yesterday’s thread about the TSA, my interview for Global Entry went smoothly. The only hiccup was that we forgot the paperwork with our 9-digit ID numbers, so we got chastised a bit about that. I already got an email showing my approval, with the number, so I’m in. My wife, however, has not gotten the email, and here interview was just before mine. Different officer, different procedure? Who knows, maybe it’s in her spam folder…
    Now to use the goldarn thing.

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  4. Dexter said on July 26, 2017 at 3:31 am

    Meanwhile, Trump has been accused of “blowing smoke up our asses” by a Carrier H.V.A.C. employee. Here ya are: http://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/what-its-like-to-get-laid-off-at-the-carrier-plant-trump-said-hed-save/amp

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  5. ROGirl said on July 26, 2017 at 4:59 am

    Another rich racist who has been funding hate.


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  6. Icarus said on July 26, 2017 at 5:33 am

    Alex, you think your up late….this is the 3rd night in a row I’ve woken up around 3 and cannot get back to sleep.

    Also, I’ve never gotten my airport express to play nice with non Apple hardware. Our house has a combo of drywall and plaster walls so I just bit the bullet and bought one of those routers on steroids and it essentially solved the wireless problem.

    I also have our roku and smart tv hard wired to the modem as well.

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  7. coozledad said on July 26, 2017 at 7:32 am

    Speaking of Boy Scouts, one of my history professors was a former Hitlerjugend who was drafted in the closing days to help man an antiaircraft battery om the Western front. His last day in combat saw them thrown on a bridge that sappers failed to blow. They were ordered to hold it to the last fourteen year old man. Ehre Heisst Treue and all that.

    Once the Allies showed up at the other end of the bridge, the kids did what rational people do, and waved those arms in the air like they just didn’t care. No skull and crossbones merit badge for them.

    He had an interesting perspective on reformation history, and how the bifurcated churches managed to continue to vigorously embrace their old habits of pogroms and witch burnings. He believed it was baked into those tiny provincial brains, and no paradigm shift would stop it.

    In short, we’ve never really had a sustained reprieve from the worst of ourselves, and we never will.

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  8. Suzanne said on July 26, 2017 at 8:20 am

    If any of you are wondering about the Midwestern red state mindset, go to Wane TV Facebook page (Fort Wayne IN tv station) and read the comments on their story on Trump’s speech to the Boy Scouts.
    I think we’ve reached the tipping point and gone over.

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  9. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on July 26, 2017 at 8:22 am

    Isn’t that the whole point of civilization, and why we talk about it as a thin veneer — we still have those fight or flight, shun or kill the stranger, eat or be eaten impulses burnt into the brain pan. We hairless bipeds use culture as a tool to rise above our neural programming, and sometimes it works. Some cultural institutions work better than others, and there’s always an ebb and surge of what’s working versus circumstances . . . and if we pick the wrong mountain path and take too long to cross the Sierras, next thing you know we’re philosophically considering the relative flavor of Aunt Tillie versus Cousin Len while shivering around a fire . . . and a few months later, we’re sitting in the parlor playing “Blessed Assurance” on the piano wearing knickers and a detachable collar. Same person, different circumstances.

    Our problem is when some realize how easily you can manipulate society by moving back and forth between both roles, counting on denial and avoidance to cover as well as a dark night and fog, which is what Robert Louis Stevenson was getting at with his “Strange Case of . . .”

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  10. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on July 26, 2017 at 8:25 am

    And then there’s the ones like Trump who’ve figured out how to go full-on Mr. Hyde, 24/7.

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  11. Judybusy said on July 26, 2017 at 9:07 am

    One speech Trump made is getting overshadowed by the Boy Scouts story is the political nature of a speech Trump made to active service personnel. I will have to read the Atlantic story later, as work is keeping we quite busy these days. Thanks go to the Make Me Smart podcast for the alert.

    Have we talked about asset forfeiture here? As we have discussed, Sessions has been a very effective AG for re-installing really awful policies, but I hadn’t heard about this until Monday. In 2014, people lost more to asset forfeiture than to home burglaries. This was partly due to the Madoff case, but it illustrates how significant the issue is. (Make Me Smart also covered this issue today, and that datum is from their podcast.) I initially heard about the asset forfeiture problem on another podcast, which I’ve mentioned: Pod Save the People. They also had a piece about how the Director of Corrections in North Dakota (!) has made big changes to make the prison system more humane. (Which they acknowledge is a sharp oxymoron.) She visited Norway, and came back with many ideas. I had been planning on doing research on Scandinavian corrections and how they deal with mental health issues to prep for my new position, so this was heartening. I wonder if I could swing a fact-finding trip….

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  12. Peter said on July 26, 2017 at 9:31 am

    I need professional help. At the very least, I deserve the full wrath of Coozledad.

    I easily put in a couple of hundred hours a year helping out the Boy Scouts – I organize and lead a team of older professionals who check summer camps to make sure they’re meeting BSA standards and comply with local laws.

    I can hardly put in words how disgusting that speech was. I think the most disappointing part wasn’t the speech (I mean, really, how far off was that pile of word salad from his typical speech?), nor the kids cheering (they’ll cheer for anything), but that none of the BSA professionals on stage would put their hand up to quiet the crowd, like you would do at a dining hall, and remind them that a scout is courteous and doesn’t boo or taunt others. They had a chance to remind scouts to be civil, and they cowered, just like everyone else does.

    Remember the time during the campaign when Trump started a speech at a church in Flint and the pastor stopped him and reminded him of what he was supposed to be talking about? Who would have thought then that this person was the only one who would stand up and call him out on his bullshit?

    The reason I deserve scorn is that after that speech, I thought that he really couldn’t get any lower. And then last night he says that he’s the second best president at being presidential.

    What the hell was I thinking…

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  13. Sherri said on July 26, 2017 at 10:22 am

    Peter, trump hasn’t changed. He’s the same as ever. Most people act differently in front of a crowd of Boy Scots than they would in front of a crowd of supporters, but trump is only and ever the narcissist. He can’t sink any lower nor rise any higher, because he doesn’t change. People keep being surprised by this, but it’s not because he’s ever acted appropriately before.

    There’s a good case to be made that he’s got some dementia going on, but was that true when he testified before Congress in 1993 about Indian casinos? (http://www.msnbc.com/all-in/watch/trump-in-1993-they-don-t-look-indian-716425283908)

    You go back and read old interviews with him, and you see the same things you see today.

    It’s the fools who think they can work with him to achieve their own goals that I have real contempt for.

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  14. Sherri said on July 26, 2017 at 10:48 am

    John McCain, the perfect American lie.

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  15. Jeff Borden said on July 26, 2017 at 10:50 am


    We’re so fucked.

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  16. Suzanne said on July 26, 2017 at 10:53 am

    Was this posted here yesterday? Or did I see it somewhere else?

    Explains much about the BSA’s apology/not apology

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  17. Bitter Scribe said on July 26, 2017 at 10:55 am

    Now Trump is throwing transgender people out of the military. His attempts at distraction grow ever more frantic.

    Confession: I’m somewhat like Nancy (if I’m interpreting her correctly) in that transgenderism is out near the border of things I can take seriously. But the people who oppose it are such unregenerate swine, and their political exploitation of it is so cynical even for them, that I’m lining up in favor of transgender rights almost by default. If those assholes are so against it, being for it must be the right thing.

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  18. nancy said on July 26, 2017 at 11:08 am

    That’s pretty much where I am, B.S. I want way more hard data on TS individuals — just a population number, for starters. But as you said, if these filth have a problem with it, I think it’s probably going to be OK with me.

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  19. Sherri said on July 26, 2017 at 11:30 am

    I encounter transgender people just in my normal course of everyday life, and a young friend is transgender, which unfortunately, has caused a split with his parents. As I’ve said before, I met my first transgender person over 20 years ago. I won’t pretend to understand what goes on to make a person feel that way, but I honestly don’t need data to consider a transgender person normal, or grant them the same rights.

    Sometimes I get frustrated at some of the conservative attitudes I see in my area, but then I get a shot of perspective, like when a friend from the South was worried whether her teenaged daughter would be able to get a summer job because she had shaved her head. Nobody would care about that here.

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  20. coozledad said on July 26, 2017 at 11:36 am

    Sexual identity is fluid enough among people who don’t think it is. That’s one of the reasons people are so savage toward trans people.

    People are born intersex, with physical manifestations. They experience similar institutional cruelties. If we’re going to spout platitudes about freedom, this is where it’s elemental.

    The people we need to concentrate our efforts of social coercion upon are people who are prone to commit physical violence, sexual assault, rape and murder. But we venerate those bastards as a culture. We elect them to public office. We applaud them in the well of the Senate. It’s why we suck so hard as a country.

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  21. Suzanne said on July 26, 2017 at 11:38 am

    Did any of you hear Newt G interviewed on NPR this morning? Bizarre, to say the least. Went on and on about how the entire Justice Dept is biased and can’t be trusted. Bizarre and disturbing.

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  22. coozledad said on July 26, 2017 at 11:39 am

    Oh, and intersex people occur at the same frequency as redheads. Imagine if we ripped their hair out, head and crotch.

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  23. Peter said on July 26, 2017 at 11:49 am

    Cooz at #22 – I’m sure Trump has, or has a video of it.

    Here’s a question – if it’s been sent out by Tweet, does it count? Don’t you usually have to have a written order, or something a bit more official?

    This guy is a gift that keeps on giving.

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  24. Bob (Not Greene) said on July 26, 2017 at 11:50 am

    Transgender troops make up a whopping .004% of active duty military according to this article. If that’s what’s going to keep us from “overwhelming victory” (Christ, thanks for that phrase Mein Fuehrer) then we ought to just throw down our weapons right now.

    Also, this photo. It’s should be titled “Portrait of Mike Pence as Groveling Toady.”


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  25. Bob (Not Greene) said on July 26, 2017 at 11:52 am

    Actually, it’s 0.4 percent. Math.

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  26. Jolene said on July 26, 2017 at 11:59 am

    Some background from a WaPo reporter who’s been covering the issue of transgender people in the military.


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  27. nancy said on July 26, 2017 at 12:12 pm

    Making TS an issue is just an update of the Karl Rove playbook. The WP reporters says “thousands” of troops are TS? I just find that number astonishing. This is why data is important.

    And my main squickiness on the issue is about treating pre-pubescent children with hormones to “correct” their gender. It just seems like an enormous step to make without a fuller understanding of the issue. Ask Alex what he would have chosen as a Kinsey 6 child.

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  28. Deborah said on July 26, 2017 at 12:13 pm

    Many years ago in a church women’s (Lutheran Women’s Missionary League) get together we invited a woman who was a nurse who worked in delivery rooms. I don’t remember exactly why she was invited to speak (this was way back in the 70s). But one thing she said always stuck with me, that there are a lot more babies born than we think that are either intersex or have genitalia such that it’s impossible to tell if they’re male or female. That’s when I became aware that gender and sexual orientation is a lot more fluid than we were led to believe. A lot of the church ladies were horrified to hear what the nurse had to say and were furious that she had been invited.

    LB has two trans friends, both she got to know through FB and eventually met one of them in person. She has been to visit LB a few times, along with her wife, they live in the Netherlands. They are wonderful people, who are no different than you or me. I haven’t had an opportunity to meet them yet, but I look forward to it.

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  29. Sherri said on July 26, 2017 at 12:26 pm

    The number of transgender people serving in the military being reported comes from a RAND report done in 2015: http://www.rand.org/content/dam/rand/pubs/research_briefs/RB9900/RB9909/RAND_RB9909.pdf

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  30. Heather said on July 26, 2017 at 12:31 pm

    My cousin told me last year that one of his kid’s friend’s dads suddenly announced he was transitioning to female. My cousin–fire chief, married with three kids, lives in the suburbs, etc etc–admitted it was a bit weird. I said yes, it is a bit odd, especially when you know the person a little and had no clue, but like any other major change it just takes some time to get used to.

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  31. Heather said on July 26, 2017 at 12:32 pm

    Admitted he felt weird about it, I should clarify, not that being transgender is odd.

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  32. Sherri said on July 26, 2017 at 12:33 pm

    Nancy, does your squickiness extend to the long-standing practice of assigning a gender to intersex infants with ambiguous genitalia?


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  33. coozledad said on July 26, 2017 at 12:33 pm

    On this day in 1948, President Harry S. Truman desegregated the military.


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  34. nancy said on July 26, 2017 at 12:40 pm

    Of course it does, Sherri. I’m not denying the amazing diversity of the human family, nor am I taking any sort of issue with gender fluidity. I’m unsure about chemical or surgical “solutions” being used on any minor child, period. Let people be people, and accept them and all their differences. BTW, that Rand study states up front that all the data is suspect and mainly a matter of guesses and averages, but OK, I’ll take them at their word. They’ve certainly done more work on this front than I have.

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  35. ROGirl said on July 26, 2017 at 12:53 pm

    There’s a ts in my workplace. I didn’t know until I saw a picture of her with some other workers. I remarked that she’s a big girl and someone told me that’s a he-she. The only giveaway is her voice, it’s husky and deeper than a woman’s voice. She takes hormones, is very curvy, wears off the shoulder tops and tight jeans, highlights her hair, and uses a lot of makeup.

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  36. Suzanne said on July 26, 2017 at 1:02 pm

    I, too, am uncomfortable with permanent solutions on gender issues when the person is underage. I think a youngster isn’t capable of making decisions on things like this. Heck, my son wanted to marry his sister when he was in kindergarten! I don’t think most people at 8 or 10 or 12 really understand gender and those sorts of issues.
    A female friend of my daughter’s has a female friend (her girlfriend? No one is sure) who has changed her name to a guy’s name and dresses like a guy, but apparently says she’s ok with being female. I also know that this young woman grew up in a home rife with chaos and had all sorts of mental & emotional issues growing up because of it. I think there are true transgender people but I wonder, in cases like hers, if it’s not more of a way to distance herself from her painful past. In those cases, wouldn’t counseling be a better choice than something permanent?

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  37. Jolene said on July 26, 2017 at 2:18 pm

    A couple of years ago, Frontline did a show called Growing Up Trans. Worth watching and available online or through your streaming service. Tough issues for families, for sure, but some of these kids seem pretty committed to the idea that they do not experience themselves to be the gender they were believed to be at birth.

    There’s also a BBC documentary re a Welsh boy transitioning to female. It’s called Sweet Sixteen: A Transgender Story. I wasn’t able to find a link to the whole film, but Google will take you to many articles and video clips about the kid and her family. Can’t remember where I first saw this, but I was charmed by the accents and, particularly, by the stance of the parents, who seemed to decide that the best thing to do was let their kid lead the way and keep loving her.

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  38. Jolene said on July 26, 2017 at 2:20 pm

    Dammit! I hate it when I screw up an HTML code.

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    • jcburns said on July 26, 2017 at 3:17 pm

      Yeah, it’s the worst, isn’t it?

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  39. LAMary said on July 26, 2017 at 3:10 pm

    Deborah, there are Marimekko duvets and shams on sale at Nordstrom online. Just thought I’d let you know.

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  40. Icarus said on July 26, 2017 at 3:17 pm

    Perhaps these post from my ChicagoNow colleague will help?




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  41. Jakash said on July 26, 2017 at 3:18 pm

    I don’t know if even one person would care to pick their way through the long comment thread I’m linking to, but back in the glory days of Eric Zorn’s blog, he posted a Slate article, which prompted a lively discussion of today’s topic. “Dr. X” is a psychiatrist and was one of the best regular commenters. His multiple comments here discussing the fluidity of gender were very enlightening to me, at any rate, though I was just lurking that day…


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  42. Sherri said on July 26, 2017 at 3:37 pm

    I think, as with many things involving parents and children, that life is complicated. I believe that there are children who are quite aware and sure that they are the wrong gender from a young age, and parents who have thoughtfully and carefully decided to accommodate that. I believe there are probably children who are confused, and maybe there are parents who are willing to pursue extreme solutions because they are uncomfortable with confusion. I suspect there are more parents who are uncomfortable with the whole idea of gender not matching external genitalia, or the lack of a gender binary, and who don’t want to acknowledge that their children might not fit with this kind of identity. I would guess that this third group is much larger than the first group, and the second group is pretty small.

    None of which is particularly relevant to the issue of whether transgender soldiers should be allowed to serve.

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  43. St Bitch said on July 26, 2017 at 3:40 pm

    Playing catch up again.

    Transgenders in the military just strikes me as an awkward, problematic fit…or misfit.

    Having become intimate with dementia over the course of four years, (Mom’s flavor was diagnosed as Lewy Body), I’m not quite buying it as the cause of (or an excuse for) tRump’s many behavior disorders…the narcissism, megalomania, and delusions…which are too integral a part of his personality and history to point to some recent development of the disease. It did seem like Bill Clinton was exhibiting some early mild symptoms of dementia when during campaign season.

    What a horror of a shitshow was the spectre of a befuddled, propped-up, drug-embalmed zombie McCain, replete with Frankenstein facial stitches; removed from his sickbed and paraded before us to speechify, then immediately contradict the obfuscating words of whoever wrote the speech he read with his vote. Anyone who thinks that dying, befuddled man is making his own decisions or acting of his own volition, simply fail to see the McConnell puppet strings from which he is limply dangling.

    A Tale of Two Provacateurs:

    Joe K – for the most part, I prefer not to pay you any attention as I find your mean-spirited attempts at trolling to be rather flaccid and impotent.

    Cooze – while I might beg to differ with your conclusion that the perverse use of civility devoids it of core value; such an argument is moot in this context, where I agree whole-heartedly with you about what constitutes real vulgarity. Case in point is McCain just yesterday spouting about how Congress needs to be ‘civil’.

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  44. Judybusy said on July 26, 2017 at 3:42 pm

    I checked FB after reading everything here and found out today a friend of ours is getting his bottom surgery done, in Austin TX of all places. He lives here. I ran into him about a month ago and he was so excited and terrified (his words). He will be in Austin for about 2 months, has arranged all his care, flying various friends and fmaily down to do that. The total recovery time is 4 months, I think he said. So, no, it’s not a whim, it can be a very serious commitment, depending on how much physical altering one wants to do. Plus, of course, all the emotional changes, dealing with friends and family. I’ve only known this person as a man, but have known one other F to M while he went through the process.

    Today, while driving, I saw a person who was clearly born male, wearing a dress, holding up a sign asking for money at an intersection. It was just so sad. My friend has resources–financial and social–and this person’s experience is so different.

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  45. Judybusy said on July 26, 2017 at 3:50 pm

    Oh and also, now I’m near tears, as I know an amazing local trans activitist heard Trump’s announcement. When Barbara Satin was male, she served in the navy. She told me once there were *so* many trans women, deeply closeted, in the navy. Oh, not just local. Barbara is around 83 and still kicking ass and taking names. We serve on the board of Clare Housing together. We’re having a grand opening today for a new apartment building, so I hope to see her there to give her a big hug.

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  46. susan said on July 26, 2017 at 4:02 pm

    Senator John McCain Venn Diagram

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  47. Jolene said on July 26, 2017 at 4:58 pm

    Politico has the goods on why this transgender ban happened to pop up today. Long backstory re conservatives who didn’t want to use tax money to pay for transgender healthcare services.

    Of course, the amount in question is tiny compared to what the military already spends on care for military personnel and their families–including much more money spent on Viagra than the estimated cost of care for trans people.

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  48. Jolene said on July 26, 2017 at 4:59 pm

    Is there a reason we decided to go with lowercase letters for people’s names at the top of their posts?

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  49. Bitter Scribe said on July 26, 2017 at 5:11 pm

    Suzanne @21: These people are unbelievable. They control both houses of Congress, the White House, the Supreme Court and a huge majority of governorships and state legislatures, and they’re still running against the government.

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  50. susan said on July 26, 2017 at 5:15 pm

    Bitter Scribe, no they are trying to destroy the government. That’s why they are there. They are doing a good job, especially with the feckless Dims.

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  51. Sherri said on July 26, 2017 at 5:42 pm

    Yes, Susan, they are. And much like the former Uber employee who thought Uber would be a fun libertarian playground only to find that it made work blood sport, I suspect that many of them will discover too late that life without government isn’t all that pleasant for them. Unfortunately, they will have hurt a lot of people to discover this.

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  52. Deborah said on July 26, 2017 at 6:42 pm

    St. B, you say it well. I was so depressed yesterday when I felt that we were one step closer to LB losing her healthcare. I’m feeling a little less depressed today but I’m not exactly sure why. It’s so frustrating to feel that there is not much we can do about it, besides calling our senators and reps. All of ours happen to be Democrats, so we call and thank them and ask them to continue the resisting. It’s hard to watch Republicans be so cruel to their fellow citizens.

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  53. Deborah said on July 26, 2017 at 6:50 pm

    We are back in Santa Fe, we stay in Abiquiu a max of 3 nights and then come back to plumbing and electricity for a night. Going back to Abiquiu tomorrow midday, but this time staying 2 nights then a night back with flush toilets etc. then 2 nights in Abiquiu again so that we end up back in Santa Fe for the opera on the 4th. The opera we chose this year is new, it premiered in Santa Fe, it’s about Steve Jobs, it has gotten good reviews. I’m looking forward to it.

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  54. Sherri said on July 26, 2017 at 7:00 pm

    It will be a fucking miracle if the Republicans don’t destroy the world out of sheer ignorance and stupidity, while they’re busy destroying government, pissing off liberals, and undoing everything Obama did just because he did it.


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  55. Suzanne said on July 26, 2017 at 7:27 pm

    Is this the Rick Perry who just got scammed?

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  56. St Bitch said on July 26, 2017 at 9:37 pm

    Hold your corner, Deborah (and Little Bird)…continue to do what you’re so obviously good at doing – taking heart and taking action. There are too many outraged constituents dependent on ACA now, to make removing it easy…

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  57. Charlotte said on July 26, 2017 at 9:58 pm

    Oddest twitter conversation this afternoon with a rancher I follow on Twitter. She claims her whole family was covered pre-ACA for $200/month, now she’s paying $800 (2 adults, 2 kids). She wants the insurance companies out of the equation, but doesn’t want universal single-payer. Because “universal”? And politics are bad but “the solution is people.” But she pays too much for something she’s “forced” to buy. All I can figure is that she wants govt. health care for low premium but doesn’t want “them” to have the same? Then she tells me I can’t understand because I’m one of the “writers and celebrities” who “took over” Montana, which is why she lives in Idaho now. Anyhow, it was such a mishmash of illogic and that sort of smug thing you get from ranchers sometimes, that they’re the only people who “really work” — that I’m still sort of puzzling it over — this is someone I’ve followed for ages as one of my small-ag feed, and it was so odd to have her get all hostile at me as I kept trying to figure out which solution she wanted, and then tried to talk the politics of getting there. Anyhow. Ugh.

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  58. coozledad said on July 26, 2017 at 10:12 pm

    Taking Republican healthcare out for a spin.

    Just remember: the carnies are in control.

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  59. alex said on July 26, 2017 at 10:22 pm


    $200 a month pre-ACA for a family of four?

    By pre-ACA does she mean 1975 or something?

    I was paying double that for me, myself and I in 2004, and that was for one shitty-ass high-deductible plan that excluded anything that might ever happen to my back because they found out I had once — ONCE — been to a chiropractor for a pinched nerve after sleeping on the floor at a cabin get-together.

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  60. Charlotte said on July 26, 2017 at 10:33 pm

    I know! I think the people complaining about premiums they paid pre-ACA are just making it up. I was paying $450 a month just for me — high deductible, no maternity coverage (which was an issue when I got accidentally preggo. Not the only factor in terminating, but a huge one as I was in my late 40s and Himself never wanted kids), 20% co-pay with no cap. Or they were buying policies that didn’t cover anything and banking on nothing bad happening? They’re all SO pissy about ACA policies. Have they never needed emergency surgery? chemo? had a preemie? The hard-cap on the annual out of pocket alone makes it all worthwhile for me.

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  61. alex said on July 26, 2017 at 11:14 pm

    Just scanned back further upthread — been on the phone with tech support most of the day and got nowhere really so haven’t had time to read — and in response to Nancy’s comment at 27…

    Yes, in prepubescence I might have opted for female anatomy if I could have had it. I used to dream of waking up and finding myself magically transformed.

    In hindsight, though, I know it would have been a mistake. I grew — matured, really — into my identity as a male, and what’s more, into self-acceptance, which I think is really at the heart of the issue.

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  62. David C. said on July 27, 2017 at 6:09 am

    Like they say about pre-ACA policies, there were two types of people, ones who liked their insurance and ones who used it. The pre-ACA policies were garbage and if they determined your treatment would cost too much they would find you had acne when you were a kid and cancel the policy because you didn’t tell them. That actually happened. People at work bitch that our insurance got worse because of ACA. It did, but only tangentially because of ACA. It was a golden opportunity for companies to offload as much as they though they could get away with onto the employees and blame the black guy.

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  63. coozledad said on July 27, 2017 at 8:26 am

    Jesus fucking Christ.


    When they’re willing to try this, they’ll do anything. This is the Checkers speech written in shit.

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  64. coozledad said on July 27, 2017 at 8:52 am

    Partial transcript of Manafort’s answers to the Senate intelligence committee:

    Senator Reed: Mr. Manafort, it has come to our attention that the Ukrainian government has what they call a “black ledger” detailing transactions between you, the former Putin friendly regime, Alfa bank, Deutsche bank, Viktor F. Yanukovich, Oleg Deripaska, and several Russian oligarchs. Are you denying the existence of these books, and if so, do you have any corroborative evidence to support your assertion?

    Paul Manafort: Wif all doo respeck, semator Ree. I like u do u like me. How many monny I have is not Rooshin monny. You kin call me Ice picky. My frens doo. I got a big furry hat form Putin an that iz all he giv me. Wy are peepl want to be meen to Turmp?

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  65. Peter said on July 27, 2017 at 8:56 am

    COOZ – wtf is that? A 9 year old kid had a Trump themed party? With the girls dressed up as Russian hookers and pee all over the place? Man, kids lose their innocence at such a young age these days…

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  66. coozledad said on July 27, 2017 at 9:08 am

    peter: Every time I think these bastards have hit rock bottom, they change their brand. Last week it was Richards and MD 20/20. This week it’s Night Train Express and Sterno.

    “Those familiar with Trump say his stances aren’t contradictory, but rather illustrate the consistency of his instincts to shape his views depending on the moment.

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  67. Peter said on July 27, 2017 at 9:36 am

    Seriously, after watching the Scaramucci Shit Show last night, I think Harvard Law should ask for their degree back.

    I didn’t think it would be possible to ever feel even a teensy bit sorry for Reince and Sessions, but look at that.

    If it weren’t for everyone losing their health care and open season on blacks, Mexicans, Muslims, and gays, this could be amusing.

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  68. Sherri said on July 27, 2017 at 9:43 am

    There is no core to trump, so there is no bottom to reach, nothing to hold onto and say, here, this is it, here is where he stands. Engaging with trump simply means you get coated with his sliminess.

    I’ve heard people claim that he’ll protect his family, to which I say bullshit. Does anyone really believe that if it comes down to protecting himself or throwing Jared and Little Donnie under the bus, Jared and Donnie would be taken care of? trump cares about and thinks about no one but himself, period. What’s best for trump is best for America, by definition.

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  69. Heather said on July 27, 2017 at 10:34 am

    Yeah, that $200/month number for a family is pure bullshit, or it was the worst insurance policy ever. I was paying $350/month around 2004, also without maternity coverage. I remember working with a woman at a contract job who was probably in her 40s and she told me she paid $700 a month because she had back issues.

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  70. Charlotte said on July 27, 2017 at 11:04 am

    I know! Pisses me off — there also seems to be this myth going around the rural West that if we could just get rid of that darn ACA, we could make a deal with our local hospital, and just pay for services. Which is fine until someone gets cancer, or has a preemie, or god forbid, gets thrown from a horse or ATV and winds up with a TBI and in a wheelchair. And that it comes from folks I’m subsidizing via grazing fees, red diesel in their vehicles and crop insurance — well it’s all a bit rich. (But they “deserve” it for being hard working salt o’ the earth who “feed the world.”) GARGH.

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  71. Sherri said on July 27, 2017 at 11:17 am

    And it’s the West, Charlotte, so we can’t forget water! Ageiculture use of water in the west is usually subsidized to a great degree. And, thanks to the Republican state senate, my property taxes will go up over $800 next year to subsidize school in the rural part of the state, and even more the years after that, while property taxes in those areas drop.

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  72. basset said on July 27, 2017 at 11:21 am

    Meanwhile, something else to worry about:


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  73. Charlotte said on July 27, 2017 at 11:26 am

    Sherri — I knew I’d become a westerner when I came home for a visit, and standing in the pasture on our farm in Illinois (which we bought in 1868) asked my aunt what her water rights were. “What?” she said. “What are you talking about?”
    Of course now, she’s looking into water law just in case …

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  74. Judybusy said on July 27, 2017 at 11:53 am

    Justice Department files amicus brief Stating Title VII doesn’t cover LGBT protection. On top of the transgender ban, moving to Canada doesn’t sound so stupid any longer. Montreal is apparently desperate for nurses, and I’m thinking a psychiatric social worker with nearly 25 years’ experience might be able to find a job.

    Thanks, Pilot Joe. The day after the election I was sobbing to my mother “I don’t think they’d ever really try to take back our marriage, but I’m really scared.” Yes, I know this is about employment, and “just” an amicus brief, but what’s coming? The administraiton is out to repress every civil rights gain POC, women, people with disabilities, and the GLBT communities have fought so damn hard for.

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  75. Julie Robinson said on July 27, 2017 at 12:00 pm

    Judybusy, I think you’re right to be scared. Sam Brownback, he of the failed Kansan experiment, has just been appointed as Ambassador at Large of Religious Freedom. Are we living in Gilead?

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  76. Jakash said on July 27, 2017 at 12:07 pm

    I hate to pick on 9-yr.-olds, but he sure spells like a Rump supporter, so that checks out. I wonder if he was sent copies of some tax returns, since he asked nicely about how rich ole Rumpy is, and his favorite president only responds to flattery. If ever an occasion called for body armor for the girls attending, it would be a Trump-themed birthday party…


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  77. coozledad said on July 27, 2017 at 12:12 pm

    Republicans worship an evil god. The next time someone takes aim at them, I hope the Black Lesbian cop hands the shooter her gun.

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  78. Suzanne said on July 27, 2017 at 12:14 pm

    Sigh. I don’t even know what to think anymore. I just cannot fathom that people do not see Trump for what he is. I was telling my son the other night about the cult freakouts of the late 1970s early 1980s, when people would have their children kidnapped to get them away from it so they could get out of the mindset. Now, we have a yuuuge cult and we can’t kidnap all of them.
    The book club I’m in chose Road to Jonestown for the book of the month. I’m not sure that’s a good idea…

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  79. brian stouder said on July 27, 2017 at 12:15 pm

    OK – amidst all our steadily darkening moods – there’s this – which made me laugh


    Maybe ‘The Mooch’ is angling to be Vice President, once the incumbent decides that Indispensible Pence is one of “the leakers”

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  80. Peter said on July 27, 2017 at 12:32 pm

    Oh Brian, that would be a dream come true. Pence gets his comeuppance, and they can impeach the lot of them.

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  81. Jakash said on July 27, 2017 at 12:54 pm

    Good one, Brian. This is completely irrelevant, but was the line I liked the best, (not from Mooch, needless to say.)

    “Let’s be honest: Rose could have scooched over a little bit and fit Jack on the floating door. You know it. I know it. The American people know it.”

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  82. Suzanne said on July 27, 2017 at 1:10 pm

    At this point, what the heck is in this for Priebus? Is he just a masocist? Or is this all some strange script they are all following? A reality show we think is reality?

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  83. LAMary said on July 27, 2017 at 1:33 pm

    If you just open up Slate and look at the titles of the articles it will bum you out even more. I just did that and it was not wise. Now I feel pretty screamy.

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  84. Heather said on July 27, 2017 at 1:36 pm

    For Priebus to resign would take some level of reflection, awareness, and self-respect. None of which he seems to have, so he’s happy to play the toady even as it destroys him.

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  85. Scout said on July 27, 2017 at 2:04 pm

    Ed at Gin & Tacos wrote an opinion piece for the WaPo. We can all say we knew him when.

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  86. Colleen said on July 27, 2017 at 3:00 pm

    I just got back from a cancer registrars’ conference in which there was a presentation about the future of cancer treatment. It’s all very exciting. And very expensive. Some of the new genetic type treatments? Tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars a dose. People who aren’t insured or who have crappy insurance will die. That’s all there is to it. We shouldn’t be trying to make it easier for the insurance companies to deny based on pre-existing conditions, or put a lifetime cap on payments. And yet, that’s what Repubs want to do.

    And every time I think Trump can’t get more repugnant, he does.

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  87. Dorothy said on July 27, 2017 at 3:07 pm

    Took me a few seconds to figure out that “lamary” was who we used to know as L period A period mary. What happened to Mary’s periods?! (ha ha)

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  88. brian stouder said on July 27, 2017 at 3:22 pm

    She’s missing her periods?…uh – ohhhh!

    (btw – I got my original cursive back. JC must have been right [again!] – that it was something on my end)

    Aside from all that – did you know that Mr Jagger turned 74 yesterday?

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  89. LAMary said on July 27, 2017 at 3:48 pm

    No periods. I’m ten years younger than Mick Jagger.

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  90. Jolene said on July 27, 2017 at 3:54 pm

    She didn’t have periods (on nn.com), but she did have capitals.

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  91. coozledad said on July 27, 2017 at 4:05 pm

    Loose nukes in a banana republic.

    People will have to get out on the streets and break down doors. Particularly in Washington.

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  92. Sherri said on July 27, 2017 at 5:24 pm

    The literal embodiment of the Margaret Atwood quote: http://www.seattletimes.com/nation-world/federal-authorities-to-announce-charges-in-cruise-ship-death/

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  93. Jakash said on July 27, 2017 at 5:39 pm

    Hard to believe that an entity called Goop would be coming out with utter shite, but there you have it:

    “Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop calls doctor ‘strangely confident’ in debunking the utter shite they come out with. Doctor response:”


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  94. Deborah said on July 27, 2017 at 7:03 pm

    I don’t know about you but Scarramucci doesn’t scare me, he’s a laughable hot head who’ll be out the door in no time. What a creep. Sorry no link but look up Ryan Lizza’s recent piece in the New Yorker.

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  95. coozledad said on July 27, 2017 at 7:45 pm

    Mooch is lying his ass off again. No way Bannon can suck his own cock with that gut.

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  96. coozledad said on July 27, 2017 at 8:13 pm


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  97. Scout said on July 27, 2017 at 8:25 pm

    What a day. Here’s something funny. http://www.thingsyoushouldlearn.com/2016/04/anonymous-artist-is-photoshopping-kids.html?m=1

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  98. Suzanne said on July 27, 2017 at 10:00 pm

    What the bloody hell is WRONG with this GOP Congress. Now, McConnell is begging people to vote for this skinny bill with the assurance that the House won’t let it go any farther.
    “Here kid. I will let you have this pack of condoms because you promised me you would never use them ”
    “Wait? Who is this girl and why is she in your bed? You promised!”

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