More drama.

So there was a domestic-violence incident in Oakland County the other day, which probably wouldn’t have made the papers were it not for one of the parties involved (a high-ranking Ford exec) and the weirdness of the accusation: He threatened to set two of her handbags on fire. The brand(s) were not named, but the wife reported each had a value of $10,000, which suggests Hermés, and that’s the last time I’m going to put the diacritic over the E, so sorry about that, Académie Française member readers.

My purse-expert friend further speculates they were probably Kelly bags, because a Birkin would have cost far, far more. However, a possible complicating factor would be whether it was purchased used (“pre-loved”) or not. But never mind that.

The wife issued a statement yesterday that confirmed what police know about domestic-violence incidents, i.e., that they suck:

The wife of a Ford Motor Co. executive who allegedly assaulted her over the weekend is defending her spouse, saying she loves and supports him, and that he’s never acted violently in the past.

Soo Louis-Victor issued a statement through her an attorney, Paul Stablein, about a weekend incident involving her husband, Franck Louis-Victor. In it, she called him a “loving partner and father.”

Of course. And yes, they were indeed Hermes:

According to a preliminary investigation and a criminal complaint, the victim told officers that she and Louis-Victor were in an argument when he threatened to burn two of her Hermes purses, each valued at about $10,000, with a butane torch. She told police after she took the purses from him, he turned the torch toward her and said he would harm her if he couldn’t damage the handbags, police said.

Later during the fight, he allegedly slapped her, headbutted her and struck her with a Google Nest Hub device, cutting her under the left eye. She sought treatment at a hospital.

I know domestic violence is a complex issue, that alcohol complicates everything, but this is not the way a loving partner and father behaves during an argument. The Google Nest Hub device did make me shake my head. Get out of the way, frying pans and rolling pins — flying Alexas are the new in-home weapon.

Whatever the reason, I think she’s going to have to pawn those bags before this is all over. A shame.

OK, then: The only other thing in the papers this morning that caught my eye was probably Michigan-specific, i.e., this piece about Gov. Whitmer’s plan to overhaul education in the state. Briefly, she wants to transform the traditional state-level department into a broader one focused on preschool-to-career, the Michigan Department of Lifelong Education, Advancement and Potential, i.e. MiLEAP:

The new department will work toward “improving outcomes from preschool through postsecondary,” read a Wednesday announcement scant on details about how that might be accomplished. Governors don’t govern the state education department. It’s controlled by an elected state board and a state superintendent hired by that board, a source of frustration for governors of both parties. The new department will partner with, not replace, the state Board and Department of Education, Whitmer’s office said.

I like the idea, but I’ve been away from Lansing too long to immediately figure the what’s-it-about/what’s-it-really-about situation here. These grafs lower down are the meat of it:

Whitmer’s tactic could, possibly, move education to a new dynamic, one focused on accomplishment. Whitmer’s move could shift school policy more directly and quickly while focusing it more intently. It may give schools and teachers more flexibility to actually teach, and inspire kids to actually learn.


What happens with the still-existing Department of Education? Will the Republicans who backed Bollin’s proposal [who proposed eliminating that department entirely] fight Whitmer’s? Does this actually open schools to more political wrangling, or protests, or parental resistance? How will funding issues be resolved? And could all Whitmer’s efforts be overturned when conservative government inevitably returns to power in Lansing? Are these questions Whitmer considered? If so, does she care about those worries, or is she focusing instead on the chance of great reward?

Good ones to think about, no matter where you live, as the weekend draws near. Have a good one.

Posted at 8:54 am in Current events |

42 responses to “More drama.”

  1. Jeff Gill said on July 13, 2023 at 9:24 am

    Yikes. And in Ohio, the GOP Statehouse is making oddly similar moves in managing local education through state mandates & leveraging. This is all about providing the workforce employers want, not educating youth. I’ll just stop here and drink more coffee.

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  2. Jeff Borden said on July 13, 2023 at 10:01 am

    A mutual acquaintance of Ms. Nall and mine, Jeff Lewis, is a prominent attorney in Columbus. He posted a photo on FB yesterday showing a long line of voters stretching down the block, waiting to cast an early ballot on the QOP effort to make it harder for the voters to challenge the legislature, despite the temperatures being in the ’90s. Hopefully, the effort will go down in flames, but you know the bastards will keep trying. With younger voters rejecting the QOP brand, the only way to hold power is to lock it in now and make it infinitely more difficult to oust them.

    Does Sherrod Brown, the definition of a moderate Democrat, have a chance in Ohio? I’d hate to see another tech billionaire sock puppet like J.D. Vance get elected, but the state is so far gone, perhaps its a foregone conclusion.

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  3. Deborah said on July 13, 2023 at 11:12 am

    This sounds like quite the gathering, RFK jr with screaming and farting

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  4. Icarus said on July 13, 2023 at 11:49 am

    Looking at Today in NN.c history, I want to ask our Proprietress:

    how did those Russian Language lessons turn out?

    Will be headed for Chicago this weekend and be there for a week. I’m hoping to make some headway toward convincing my mom to start throwing out crap before she dies and maybe even write a will. I’d really love it if she sold her crapshack and bought something better but that would be a miracle on the level of curing cancer!

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  5. nancy said on July 13, 2023 at 12:14 pm

    I can find a bathroom or doctor in Moscow. I can ask my Ukrainian contractors if they want a drink of water. But Vladimir Putin could tell me state secrets and they’d never go any further. Alas.

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  6. David C said on July 13, 2023 at 2:14 pm

    Did the Freep ever wring their hands and wonder what would happen to the Rs fuckery when the Dems took over? I doubt it.

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    • nancy said on July 13, 2023 at 5:06 pm

      It’s an op-ed by a contributor.

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  7. robert said on July 13, 2023 at 3:32 pm

    Chère Mme Nall – it’s an “e-accent grave” in “Hermès”.
    I wouldn’t have said anything except you mentioned diacritical marks.
    Keep up the good work,
    (A retired French teacher)

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  8. David C said on July 13, 2023 at 6:28 pm

    OK, that makes sense. Still, I bet they never have. Eventheliberal papers’ starting point is whatever the Republicans are whining about at the moment. Even with their being completely out of step on abortion, the papers all said there would be a red tsunami in the mid-terms because the Rs told them there would be.

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  9. FDChief said on July 13, 2023 at 8:15 pm

    What will happen if the wingnuts get their dickbeaters on the levers of power?

    Duh. What ALWAYS happens; the sonsofbitches will burrow away to turn the clock back to 1885, complete with all the usual fuckery about taxes, regulations, bigotry, and Christopathy

    Nothing short of that will please them. So a 70% top marginal tax rate? You might as well legislate hanging one millionaire at random once a quarter. It’s the same communism to the MAGAts.

    So why legislate with one eye on these chucklefucks? They’re gonna hate anything you do, so why not do something worthwhile and give people a chance to see if they like it?

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  10. Jeff Borden said on July 13, 2023 at 8:51 pm

    FDChief, you speak my language.

    Time after time after time, columnists and commentators ask liberals and progressives to give the MAGAts some compassion, some understanding, some sympathy to their views. (David French has done it twice in his last two columns in the NYT.) Why? What possible argument could sway those red-faced cultists, attired from head to foot in tRump paraphernalia and shrieking like monkeys on speed, to consider the plight of a transgender child? What could anyone possibly say to make them reconsider their adoration of firearms as religious totems? Do you think they are capable of considering the international ramifications of isolationism? Of ‘Murica First? Please.

    It’s long past time trying to please these walking hemorrhoids of anything. FDChief is on the money. There is NOTHING you can do to change them and it’s time to stop trying. Delivering good government means nothing to them. So, start taking better care of those who have supported you. Stop trying to woo the unwilling.

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  11. FDChief said on July 13, 2023 at 9:57 pm

    And for the record…

    Millionaires? Hanging a random one every, say, couple of months or so? Pour encourages les autres?

    I’m FDChief, and I endorse this message.

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  12. Jeff Borden said on July 13, 2023 at 10:22 pm

    In the late 70s, early 80s, when we were going to a lot of punk bars, I had a lapel button reading “Eat the Rich.” I need to find it and put it back into circulation.

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  13. Deborah said on July 13, 2023 at 11:47 pm

    God Damn climate change, it’s so hot in Abiquiu now. I hate this. It is not normal, not at all.

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  14. Dexter Friend said on July 14, 2023 at 3:17 am

    Jack Smith told those goddam delay proponents to back off because these trials are going on as scheduled. Smith dismissed these delay requests as poppycock, but used a different word. Nothing much came of Mueller’s investigation, but this veteran of trials in The Hauge is taking no shit. And I hope these Kool-Aid suckers know that it is not President Joe Biden who is going after Trump. Jack Smith is an independent investigator who has giant big balls of steel and he’s going to nail the fucker to the wall. Wait and see.

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  15. Dexter said on July 14, 2023 at 3:27 am

    Deborah, the heat dome is fuelling itself, like “The Blob” grew in 1958.

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  16. Jim said on July 14, 2023 at 5:38 am

    The bag is worthless – it’s the name that costs the money .

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  17. Jeff Borden said on July 14, 2023 at 10:02 am

    Guess which state had the most people LEAVE for another state? New York? Nope. California? Wrong. Illinois? Naw. It’s Floriduh! Almost 675,000 have exited for more enlightened parts of the country. . .and places where you can actually afford homeowners insurance.

    Meanwhile, the reign of ideological terror under the little fascist wannabe also is driving out younger residents and repelling other Millennials and Gen Zers from moving there, depriving Floriduh of the bright, young talent it desperately needs. Oh, and record numbers of university positions are open after higher than normal retirements of faculty members. The primary school systems are still short at least 6,000 teachers.

    Pudd’n Boots has taken a wrecking ball to the Sunshine State and all for nothing. He has as much chance of being president as Hunter Biden, lol.

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  18. Julie Robinson said on July 14, 2023 at 11:21 am

    Jeff, I know two families who are leaving this summer, and remember, this is the blue enclave of Orlando. One is a teacher who refuses to give her classroom library list and has been told her principal can’t protect her any longer. They’re headed to New Jersey. The other is a lesbian family, and they’re going to Chicago. Their grandparents live next door and now they are considering moving too since they only came here because of their daughter and the grandkids. He works remotely and can go anywhere. So we may have new neighbors, or we may have another teardown with a subsequent McMansion next door.

    Did anyone else notice the Oakland official’s wife has an Asian name? Soo suggests to me a recent immigrant with less than American citizen status. If so, you have to question what personal agency she has to get out of the marriage.

    Yesterday my new volunteer gig took seven hours*. I did not sign up for that! Luckily there was a chair yoga class in the evening which was bliss, and I even got my mom to go along.

    *I’m still learning, and there were lots of complications including switching banks.

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  19. ROGirl said on July 14, 2023 at 11:35 am

    Franck is French, hired by Ford from Renault 2 years ago, hence the Hermès bags.

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  20. alex said on July 14, 2023 at 11:39 am

    It’s long past time trying to please these walking hemorrhoids of anything. FDChief is on the money. There is NOTHING you can do to change them and it’s time to stop trying. Delivering good government means nothing to them. So, start taking better care of those who have supported you. Stop trying to woo the unwilling.

    Good advice for DeSantis. This is why DeSantis is failing so miserably. It’s not about the substance of his or anyone else’s policies, conservative, liberal or nihilist. Trump supporters remain steadfastly loyal to Trump for only one reason. They identify with Trump on a deep psychological level: They are weak people who overcompensate for it by being blowhards. When these people see Trump acting out they know in their heart of hearts that he’s one of them. They get vicarious enjoyment watching him behaving in ways that they know would land them in a world of trouble. He brings them the promise of a world where they can behave as badly as they please and do so with impunity as long as they cop an attitude and don’t flinch. These people are as deficient in self-awareness as their idol, yet they can spot DeSantis as a phony opportunist who’s just mimicking Trumpian trash talk. They don’t want that. They want a real role model who’s an unabashed and unapologetic jerk.

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  21. tajalli said on July 14, 2023 at 12:57 pm

    Deborah, when I moved to my current apartment ten years ago, there would be heavy fog every morning that would have burned off by about 11am. For the last 4-5 years, no fog whatsoever. Definitely climate change.

    As for your insect situation, what a great kindness fo cleaning up your neighbors’ home. If they’re in their 80s, it’s possible they don’t see the dirt and/or lack the energy to keep up with cleaning.

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  22. Suzanne said on July 14, 2023 at 1:13 pm

    As Alex wrote “… These people are as deficient in self-awareness as their idol…” Living in deep red rural Indiana, the lack of self-awareness, self-reflection has always amazed me. They work very hard and accomplish much in a day, but there is never a hint of thinking about how other people think, or why they themselves think the way they do.

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  23. Jeff Borden said on July 14, 2023 at 1:17 pm

    My wife is a 3rd generation Floridoan and she would never consider returning. She’s a voracious reader so Pudd’n Boots’ attacks on libraries and his book bans hit her at a primal level. What that sawed-off little needledick is doing will have ramifications for many years to come.

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  24. Jason T. said on July 14, 2023 at 2:22 pm

    Ah yes, it all brings to mind the fateful W.C. Fields in “The Bank Dick,” explaining that his character’s last name, “Souse,” is pronounced “Souz-ay” … “accent grave over the e.”

    “Is that gun loaded?”
    “No, but you certainly are.”

    (To the bartender)
    “Was I in here last night, and did I spend a 20-dollar bill?”
    “Why, yes, you did.”
    “Oh, what a load off my mind. I was afraid I’d lost it.”

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  25. Deborah said on July 14, 2023 at 7:59 pm

    I grew up in Florida and I would never go back, ever. I hated it then and it’s worse now because of the political situation, and climate change is going to decimate it eventually. But I’m more than crabby today. With highs still in the mid 90s, day after day after day. Stucco buildings absorb too much heat, and radiate it back off, gardens everywhere around here are scorched.

    Yes, the owners of this place where we’re pet sitting are elderly and the place is way too big for them to manage, plus a dog and a cat, they have 20 acres of land and are trying to have a garden which is totally cooking now, no matter how much I water in the morning and evening. They have post it notes everywhere saying things like, “gas off” which I found confusing until I texted them asking if that meant the stove doesn’t work or something and the response was it was for them to remember to turn off the oven etc. They are becoming forgetful. There’s a note on the door “Smokey outside”, so they either are reminding themselves to take the dog out, or remember to let the dog back in. It’s sad. We really had no idea things were like this with them, they always seemed so engaged and with it as older folks.

    Really, the awful weather we’re having now is making this all so unpleasant, it’s so not normal and it seems like it will be like this every summer from now on.

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  26. Deborah said on July 14, 2023 at 8:11 pm

    One bright spot is that I started reading the book “Demon Copperhead” by Barbara Kingsolver, I didn’t know that it was an update of Dicken’s “David Copperfield”. Obama gave it high marks as one of the best books he’d read this year and it’s a Pulitzer Prize winner too.

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  27. alex said on July 15, 2023 at 6:43 am

    So I just spent a small fortune on a new roof, and my reason for doing so was to get my poorly ventilated attic properly ventilated. This house had no intake vents at the lower levels of the roof and cap vents had been added at the top that weren’t really doing anything. The roofer proposed edge vents underneath the shingles for intake and a ridge vent across the top of the house for exhaust.

    Yesterday while the crew was working I noticed that they placed the edge venting only along one side of the house and not the other, and when I asked the supervisor he said venting on one side of the house would be enough. He had previously confided that this was his first-ever experience with edge venting and that his crew had never installed it before.

    So I’m not feeling too confident that I’m getting what I wanted. I haven’t paid the balance yet either. They still have to install new gutters so the project may last a few days yet. But I’m concerned that the intake vents aren’t going to be adequate and that it’s too late to do anything about it. The only reason I re-roofed was to ventilate the attic so that I can have it re-insulated. The dusty cellulose up there is probably as old as the house, which was built in 1951.

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  28. David C said on July 15, 2023 at 8:13 am

    I worked my way through college doing residential construction. You never vent just one side of a roof. If I had to guess, they found the edge vents hard to install on the first side of the roof and decided to say “forget it, good enough” on the second side. If you can, find out who the manufacturer of the edge vents is and call or email their technical support line and ask. If they say it’s needed on both sides, make the roofer redo it. It’ll cost them money but tough shit, they should have done in right in the first place.

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  29. Icarus said on July 15, 2023 at 9:45 am

    Alex, I’m sure you are researching it. Google told me “for every 300 sq ft/square foot of attic space that is equipped with a vapour barrier, you install one vent.”

    But it seems to me that for air flow you want both sides of a roof. This is probably something that would be expensive or even cost prohibitive to fix retroactively so I agree with David G — get them to do it right the first time.

    Heading to Chicago today via Mt Vernon. We stay at the Drury Inn to split the drive into two manageable 4 hour legs.

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  30. alex said on July 15, 2023 at 9:45 am

    The manufacturer is Owens-Corning and the instructions on the web site are plain enough. I’m waiting for a call back from the manager who told me to contact him at any time before, during or after the installation with any concerns.

    I’m also concerned that the vents don’t have any baffles going up into the rafters above the insulation line. I’m also concerned about one lengthy span of the roof where a mid-roof vent was supposed to be installed because the attic doesn’t extend to the edge of the roof there and it needs a brow vent.

    These concerns aside, they also failed to correct sagging and bowing of the roof surface, which the salesman promised me would be addressed. I hired them because they remedied sagging/bowing on my rental property by replacing rafters where necessary. No such work here, and I’m paying way more for this project than that one cost. I took it out of my retirement savings and paid 30 percent in taxes on it.

    From what I’ve seen online, intake venting and ridge venting have to be equally balanced to work and what they’ve done here is way out of whack.

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  31. David C said on July 15, 2023 at 11:21 am

    If you’ve already contacted an insulation contractor, I’d run the situation by them. They may need to change the type of insulation in that area to get the R-value you want and still get the air flow you need.

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  32. Bruce Fields said on July 15, 2023 at 2:32 pm

    The contractor we asked to give us an estimate for some insulation work took a look at our house and said no way, you gotta fix your moldy attic first, so…. I guess we’ll be doing the same thing as Alex soon. I’ve got to read up and call some roofers.

    I feel like my high school French teacher spent most of their time marking up my accents, and lack thereof, and fixing noun genders. Two features that I know are integral parts of the language, but that my stupid brain somehow still treats as silly details that are beneath it to memorize.

    Well, “Hermés” did look wrong, so maybe something sunk in.

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  33. Deborah said on July 15, 2023 at 6:17 pm

    Tomorrow’s high in Abiquiu will be 99º, but in Las Vegas, NV it will be 118º. I need to shut up about the heat, when it will be 19º hotter there than here, 19º, hotter (!), how can someone even exist in that heat? There’s an article in the New Yorker about people experiencing climate change anxiety and depression, because we’re all realizing that what we have currently is as good as it gets from now on, (paywalled but you get some free clicks). To me that means from now on summers in NM will be fairly unbearable and unsustainable. At least, so far anyway, fall, winter and spring will be OK. Except for of course, the excessive wind most of the time, that was the most surprising part of the future for us personally, and the most dangerous for us with our cabin in Abiquiu. We did not anticipate that, unfortunately. All is not lost though, we are talking to our structural engineer about possible upgrades. Obviously I can relate to many of the people described in the article, experiencing depression and anxiety about the situation. It has been building up to this for decades but I’m ashamed to say that somehow I was able to put it more to the back of my mind, until now. I’m in the phase of mostly only complaining about it, but I’m trying to figure out what if anything I can do about it. Voting for politicians who take it seriously is one thing, but they have to be viable candidates obviously.

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  34. LAMary said on July 15, 2023 at 9:46 pm

    I’m reluctant to say anything about our temperatures here. The gods of hideous weather know where I live and they’ve been unkind to me before. Here on Mount Washington, former home of old hippies and gays, now home of people who don’t say hello when you see them on the street and who drive very expensive cars way too fast for our very narrow little streets, it’s been below 90 most days. I think it made it to 91 today but it’s 84 now and will be in the 60s tonight. A small patch of Los Angeles county has been spared the horrible heat. The San Fernando Valley and the ‘burbs east of here are cooking. I haven’t used my AC yet and it’s mid July. Ceiling fans yes, but that’s it.


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  35. Dexter Friend said on July 16, 2023 at 2:43 am

    I went to a minor league baseball game in Las Vegas a few years ago when the temperature was 114F. As the sun set it became bearable when I stayed perfectly still. The humidity was like 6%. Contrast that with the 88% humidity coupled with 94F that I dealt with for a year in Vietnam, and yeah, we could only dream of A/C. We lived by 18 inch fans blowing in our faces whenever we were near a plug-in. To be fair, the humidity dropped to 79% as spring rolled around. And monsoon rain? Just like movies portray it…BIG raindrops, saturating deluge for months at a time, but really, some breaks when it tapered off or stopped for a few hours.

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  36. ROGirl said on July 16, 2023 at 7:07 am

    RFK Jr’s noisy dinner earlier this week also yielded further news on the anti-vaccine conspiracy front, with his speculation about the development of ethnically targeted bioweapons:

    “COVID-19. There is an argument that it is ethnically targeted. COVID-19 attacks certain races disproportionately,” Kennedy said. “COVID-19 is targeted to attack Caucasians and black people. The people who are most immune are Ashkenazi Jews and Chinese.”

    Sounds like he’s auditioning for a job in the Trump administration.

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  37. Jeff Borden said on July 16, 2023 at 11:34 am

    I find RFK Jr. pretty hard to believe, ROGirl, as he dives ever deeper into the cesspool. His anti-science and vaccine fear-mongering are horrible enough, but now he’s going anti-Semitic? He’s a seriously sick man being manipulated as a “useful idiot” by the likes of Steve Bannon and other goons on the far right. Does he honestly believe his last name protects him? Sorry, Charlie. You’re wrong.

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  38. ROGirl said on July 16, 2023 at 12:19 pm

    When you get on the conspiracy train the last stop is inevitably the Jews, and although he’s apparently tried to backtrack on his comment, I don’t think anyone misunderstood the message. The calling out of Ashkenazi Jews was an interesting distinction, but that covers most American and European Jews.

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  39. Julie Robinson said on July 16, 2023 at 2:00 pm

    So I guess Jr. wouldn’t like me because my blood carries both African and Ashkenazi Jew DNA. Didn’t his family experience prejudice because they were Irish? Does he not pay any attention to history? What is wrong with people?

    Oh wait, a delivery of the world’s finest ice cream has just arrived. Never mind.

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  40. Mark P said on July 16, 2023 at 2:49 pm

    Julie, my DNA also shows distant Black and Jewish ancestors. The percent of Sub-Saharan DNA is consistent with an African ancestor six generations back. It’s almost a certainty that my ancestors, probably the ones from South Georgia, include both a slave owner and a slave.

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  41. Jeff Borden said on July 17, 2023 at 12:23 pm

    The front page story in today’s NYT should scare the ever-loving shit out of you.

    It details plans by tRump advisers to completely politicize all federal agencies from the FCC to the FTC to the Justice Department by firing staffs en masse and replacing them with tRump appartchiks. Ghastly idea…but quite doable given today’s QOP.

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