Shut in.

Woo doggies, this heat. Mid-90s all weekend, and that is no fun, my peoples. From a glance at the weather map, it appears much of the NN.c readership knows what I’m talking about. We went sailing for a while on Saturday, and that helped, but the sun was a weapon for sure:

It was worse in northern Michigan, if you can believe that. Ninety-nine degrees at Boyne Mountain, way up near the tip of the mitten. Kate and her boyfriend went camping in the Upper Peninsula and came home a day early, after they were caught in, quote, the worst thunderstorm I’ve ever seen, unquote. The tent was flooded and they couldn’t get a hotel room, so they slept in the car.

When I wasn’t on the water, I tried to stay indoors. Ventured out to do some weight work at the gym, and even with the a/c on, it was still miserable. I told Alan that’s the last exercise I intend to do that’s not in a pool until this is over. I guess I’ll be spending some time in the pool.

When I was indoors, hiding from the heat, I did some reading. There was a lot of good reading to be done this weekend, so let’s get to it.

Everyone reads the New Yorker online, but I prefer the ink-on-paper version, and just saw this, so maybe it’s old, but what the hell — it’s a good read about the farce that ensued when Milo Yapyapyapalot came to Berkeley, or tried. You might recall that interlude, when he announced he’d be bringing a slate of high-profile conservative speakers to Berkeley for “free speech week,” and then it turned out the only losers who showed up were Mike Cernovich and Pam Geller, both creatures who actually live under the barrel, not at its bottom:

“Milo, what’s the deal tomorrow, man?” Cernovich said. “Are we speaking on campus? Off campus? What the fuck is going on?”

“O.K., so this hasn’t been announced yet, but we’re giving a big press conference on Treasure Island,” Yiannopoulos said. “I’m going to make my entrance by speedboat, with a camera trailing me on a drone, and we’re going to be live-streaming it all on Facebook.”

“I don’t do boats,” Geller said. “I projectile-vomit. But I love it for you, Milo, it’s a fabulous idea. I predict two hundred and fifty thousand viewers watching that live stream, at least.”

“I’ll be wearing this gorgeous Balmain overcoat—I’ll show you—with this huge fur collar,” Yiannopoulos said.

Geller and Cernovich changed the subject to Internet censorship. “They kicked me off Google AdSense,” Geller said. “I was making six figures a year from that. You can’t even share my links on Pinterest now! I’m ‘inappropriate content.’ ”

Yiannopoulos looked bored. “You guys are so selfish,” he said. “We used to be talking about me.” He turned to his stylist, a glassy-eyed, wisp-thin man, and whispered, “Go get the coat.”

They continued hashing out plans. “So we’ll walk in with you, through the streets of downtown Berkeley,” Cernovich said. “If there’s a screaming Antifa crowd, and if I maybe have to street-fight my way in and break a few noses in self-defense, that’s all good optics for me.”

“Maybe we should line up on the Sproul steps,” Yiannopoulos said, “surrounded by Berkeley students wearing ‘Defund Berkeley’ T-shirts.”

“Why don’t we march in with our arms linked together, like the Martin Luther King people, singing ‘We Shall Overcome’?” Cernovich said.

“We’ll do our thing, and then at some point the protests will turn violent,” Yiannopoulos said. “That will become the focus, and then we can just get ourselves out of there.” He reclined in his chair and smiled. “It’s all coming together,” he said.

The stylist came back with the coat, and Yiannopoulos squealed. “Pamela, is this coat to die for or what?” he said.

“Oh, my God, Milo, I’m dying,” Geller said. “It’s sick.”

He put the coat on and turned around, again and again, examining his reflection in the darkened glass of a window.

“It’s fabulous,” Geller said. “It’s sick. I hate you.”

Sorry for the long quote, which breaks my three-paragraph rule, but it’s a long piece. If you had any doubt that the whole free-speech-on-campus “crisis” was manufactured bullshit, this should settle it.

That story is like one long terrible joke. This one, on largely the same subject, isn’t:

The two (SCOTUS) decisions were the latest in a stunning run of victories for a conservative agenda that has increasingly been built on the foundation of free speech. Conservative groups, borrowing and building on arguments developed by liberals, have used the First Amendment to justify unlimited campaign spending, discrimination against gay couples and attacks on the regulation of tobacco, pharmaceuticals and guns.

We’ve lost our ambassador to Estonia, friends. (He was an Obama appointee, so no biggie.)

Finally, an essay by Virginia Heffernan you should read, on how profoundly lost the nation’s moral compass is at the moment:

There’s plenty of talk in Trump times about an assault on factual truth. But the more vicious attacks are on human perception, common sense and baseline notions of right and wrong.

…The Trump syndicate leverages this ludicrous stuff every day. It’s repeated and amplified by trolls and botnets, Fox News, far-right haranguers like Tomi Lahren and Milo Yiannopoulos, and, of course, the president himself.

It gets loud.

And then the stupid inversions of reason are picked up by influential voices who should know better. Worse yet, they’re given a hearing, as American citizens are forced to sit for monotonous schoolings in the media conceit of “both sides.”

It’s really good. Me, I’m going to make tacos and edit a podcast. A good week ahead to all.

Posted at 6:33 pm in Current events, Same ol' same ol' |

34 responses to “Shut in.”

  1. Jill said on July 1, 2018 at 6:52 pm

    I can’t stop myself: I hail from the Pacific NW and we are having a fabulous May/June/July so far. 😀

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  2. Bitter Scribe said on July 1, 2018 at 7:15 pm

    The Milo Whatevers going to Berkeley, and the Trumpies holding rallies in Portland today, are there to provoke. Nothing more. It’s just like when the Nazis went to Skokie or “march” or “rally” or whatever. It’s not like a Holocaust survivor was going to look at their swastikas and say, “Why, yes, the Nazis were right to throw me into Treblinka!” They were there to say “fuck you” to a community they knew would be hostile.

    It’s too bad speech like that has to be protected.

    One interesting thing about that New Yorker article: Milo and his pals, like vampires (the NYer’s phrase, not mine), have to be invited onto college campuses. The ones doing the inviting at Berkeley are a student group called “the Berkeley Patriot,” which, according to the article, “had between five and twenty active members, depending on the definition of ‘active.'” It seems pretty outrageous and irresponsible of those kids to invite incendiary speakers who will insult the vast majority of the student population and require the university to spend exorbitant fees on security. IMO those brats could use a good spanking.

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  3. jcburns said on July 1, 2018 at 7:17 pm

    Edit those tacos!

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  4. Sherri said on July 1, 2018 at 8:18 pm

    We are having good weather, Jill, but I could use a bit more sunshine! July 5th is almost here though, the traditional start of the sunny season in Seattle.

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  5. Deborah said on July 1, 2018 at 8:28 pm

    Highs in the upper 80s and low 90s in NM, but dry (very) so not horrible like in the Midwest with those numbers. Humidity makes all the difference. Plus the lows are in the low 60s upper 50s so it’s definitely bearable. Then there’s the breeze which helps too. If you can be in the shade where the breeze can reach you you’re good, more than good.

    I think at this point I will never spend another summer again for the rest of my life in the Midwest.

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  6. David C. said on July 1, 2018 at 8:44 pm

    I’d rather be dead in a ditch than ever go tent camping again.

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  7. BigHank53 said on July 1, 2018 at 9:15 pm

    Media conceit…my limit was reached last week when I listened to NPR report on an insulting tweet that Trump had made concerning the appearance of The Red Hen, the restaurant Sanders got tossed out of. Now, I’m willing to believe this juvenile fart-noise is news, since it came out of the Oval Office, but the newsreader then went on to describe it as “the latest entry in this debate.”

    Dear NPR: I know the difference between a “debate” and a monkey flinging poop, and calling one by the other’s name won’t make fecal material anything but fecal material. You will never, ever, ever placate the GOP, who are sworn to destroy you as soon as they get through with all the other victims on their list. And if you would care for my assistance on that fateful day, you might lay the groundwork now, and stop pretending that Trump has “taken over the Republican party.” All he’s done–leaving aside his manifold obsessions, insecurities, and barely-legal deals–is take the mask off the GOP.

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  8. Deborah said on July 1, 2018 at 10:38 pm

    Came out 50 years ago today, July 1, 1968

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  9. beb said on July 1, 2018 at 11:20 pm

    None of Nancy’s recommended article contain the least interest for me. No amount of “understanding” changes the fact that the world is going to hell.

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  10. Beobachter said on July 2, 2018 at 7:47 am

    Later version, with ‘beautiful’ whispered at the end

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  11. Peter said on July 2, 2018 at 8:58 am

    I know I’m preaching to the choir, but I saw that Daily Show clip of Trumpistas saying how much they love the Space Force idea. When one of them was asked why, she said that we needed someone to go to outer space and see what is happening; when the reporter told her that NASA does that already, she said that NASA doesn’t tell the government what’s really out there, so Trump has to find out on his own and tell the American people.


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  12. Icarus said on July 2, 2018 at 10:21 am

    Peter @ 11: I saw that too while most of the comments were in line with the Trumpistas thought processes, I have a hard time believing those weren’t paid actors or somehow manipulated to say all those things.

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  13. Julie Robinson said on July 2, 2018 at 10:37 am

    Icarus, you’d believe after five minutes with my hateful uncle in Iowa.

    Too hot/obsessing over next trip to think about anything else. Deborah, I don’t know how you travel so frequently; it’s got me discomfited. I am finally breaking down and buying more bras so I can have them at both houses without carrying them back and forth. Of course, they’ve changed styles since the last time I bought, so I ordered five in the same brand, same size. One is too small, one is too big, one is lost in USPS land, and two seem to be Goldilocks’s favs.

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  14. David C. said on July 2, 2018 at 11:02 am

    They’re looking for firmament and the waters above, Peter. None of this stars and planets nonsense.

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  15. Scout said on July 2, 2018 at 1:37 pm

    On Saturday I attended the Phoenix rally for Keeping Families Together. There were probably about 1000 people there, which isn’t bad considering how blasted hot it was. There were also about a dozen counter protesters who were there to agitate and provoke arguments. A few people succumbed and got into shouting matches, but the majority just drowned them out chanting “Love not hate, makes America great.’ Obviously, there’s no point in talking to counter protesters, they’re not there for intelligent discussion. I liken it to trying to teach long division to my cats. Of course, the local media gave the tiny minority almost as much air time as the main event.
    From my post on FB:

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  16. annie said on July 2, 2018 at 4:43 pm

    when I first saw Deborah’s comment @8, I thought, “wow, I didn’t know Deborah was gay. All the years I’ve looked at Nancy’s blog (altho not every day), and all the comments I’ve seen by her, I never realized she was gay. Anyway, then I checked the link.

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  17. Deborah said on July 2, 2018 at 5:15 pm

    Annie, I should have said “it came out”. Since I was 17, 50 years ago in 1968, I would have been way ahead of the times, to have “come out” then, if I was gay.

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  18. Dexter Friend said on July 2, 2018 at 6:33 pm


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  19. MarkH said on July 2, 2018 at 8:41 pm

    It’s been very seasonable here in the Tetons – lows in the mid to high 30s, highs in the mid to high 70s. Weekend camping at Jackson Lake was glorious. Then this happened Saturday:

    37 years ago last month, I left Columbus, went west of the Mississippi, deep into the mountain time zone forEVER. And Deborah, I just have to say, after reading your posts about Abiquiui all this time, if I had your place there – same deal. I’d never look back. Just sayin’.

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  20. Icarus said on July 2, 2018 at 9:29 pm

    Julie, apparently Kohls has a sale on bras, check it out

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  21. Dexter Friend said on July 3, 2018 at 1:22 am

    It’s kinda holiday-slow here, so here’s a little human interest story for yas. I mean to say this is about a true incident which I heard about…I was searching Google and a story popped up…an armored car’s rear hatch opened and three packs of cash bounced out around E. 9th St. and Superior last February. I was taken aback because back in the mid-to late 90s when I was going to many Cleveland Indians games the same thing happened at the same intersection. I used to park in The Flats and ride a bicycle to the game, and I’d cross that intersection. After that particular game I bought a paper and read that an undisclosed amount of cash had bounced out of an armored car. I figured I had crossed that street 5 minutes prior to the incident. I think a bum found the dough back then and detectives had the cash back in a few hours. If I had seen the door open and had seen all that cash, I know I would have scooped it up and gone straight to the cop HQ and big Cleveland jail and turned it in immediately. This year, a well-dressed man grabbed it, someone he knew saw the grab, and in the end the well dressed man turned it all in…the informant got a $75G reward, the well dressed man got his freedom and a kick to the street. Ready? Hold your hat ! $640,000. Life… it B strange!

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    • nancy said on July 3, 2018 at 8:54 am

      I think that happens more often than you think. I recall a case in Columbus in the late ’80s, when a lot more than three bags of cash fell out of the back of an armored car on the freeway. Drivers were swerving to the shoulder and running around like crazy, grabbing cash. This was followed by the usual threats of prosecution, then begging for the money’s return, etc. One of the luckier grabbers called the Dispatch and gave an interview, jeering about the please-return-the-money effort. And that was followed by a sorta truth-and-reconciliation commission convened by the city, headed by, no shit, Jeb Stuart Magruder, the Watergate guy who found Jesus and became a minister.

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  22. Dave said on July 3, 2018 at 1:24 pm

    I remember when that happened in Columbus. It might be a little more chancy today, what with everyone carrying around a recording device in their pocket and even if they think they won’t get caught, someone probably wouldn’t be able to resist posting it to social media.

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  23. Dexter Friend said on July 3, 2018 at 3:33 pm

    For me it would just be a fantasy to attempt to keep cash like that. Like when a robbery-theme TV show featured the lead actor telling the holders of a large sum of stolen booty, “You keep it, and what you have is free grocery money for life…that’s it. Buy a boat, a car, even move into a more fancy apartment, you are toast.”
    The pressure of having a million bucks of found money stashed away somewhere would drive me insane…not a long shove at all.

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  24. FDChief said on July 3, 2018 at 3:52 pm

    Armored cars? Small time. The real money comes when you can con people into buying the fiction that you were “elected” Chief Executive. That’s where, as Willie Sutton could tell you, “the real money is”.

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  25. jcburns said on July 3, 2018 at 4:10 pm

    I think Columbusites just thought someone was test marketing freeway-delivered free-range cash.

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  26. Scout said on July 3, 2018 at 4:22 pm

    #secondcivilwarletters is trending on Twitter. In case you need a laugh as badly as I do.

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  27. Icarus said on July 3, 2018 at 4:38 pm

    Scout, you beat me to it

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  28. Deborah said on July 3, 2018 at 6:25 pm

    Just heard an MSNBC talking head make a Fraudian slip, saying Sarah Suckabee Sanders which will forever be her name to me.

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  29. susan said on July 3, 2018 at 6:35 pm

    Fraudian slip. Heh. So true!

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  30. Sherri said on July 3, 2018 at 8:54 pm

    I’ve been struggling for several weeks over the 4th, because I don’t feel much like celebrating America right now. But Kathleen Taylor, the ED of the ACLU-WA, reminds me that the 4th celebrates revolution, and we should claim it as our revolution.

    She also points to this article, which has the following from David Cole, the legal director of the national ACLU:

    When I asked him where his equanimity and optimism came from, he laughed and said it wasn’t that he was born hopeful, it’s that he’s been in the fight for a long time. You learn to absorb defeats, and you recognize that change comes incrementally, that the dam only ever breaks after sustained, constant pressure. “I fundamentally believe that hope is more the consequence of action than its cause,” he said. “It seems to me you have two choices in this life, you can be a fatalistic spectator, or you can engage and produce hope. If those are the two choices, there is really only one choice.”

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  31. Suzanne said on July 3, 2018 at 9:49 pm

    I don’t know if this is a change or just a natural progression, but with the talk Trump’s nomination for SCOTUS, I feel I am seeing more & more conservatives admitting Trump is a complete train wreck as POTUS but that electing him was worth it because of the judges he’s getting. Well, I guess at least they are admitting they sold their souls to Satan to get what they want…

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  32. Deborah said on July 3, 2018 at 10:55 pm

    Sarah Suckabee Sanders fruchtbar hausfrau.

    Of course I meant Fruedian but Fraudian works in her case too.

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  33. brian stouder said on July 4, 2018 at 8:38 pm

    Now here’s a mayor that I would vote for, for any office he goes after

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