2:00PM Water Cooler 4/19/2024

By Lambert Strether of Corrente.

Patient readers, this is a travel day for me, I am very tired, and I am writing this from a vast transportation edifice after a liquid lunch. So please forgive any solecisms or incoherencies. –lambert P.S. Plus, I’m pressing submit while I still have connectivity, so this will be a little short.

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Bird Song of the Day

Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Finger Lakes National Forest, Tompkins, New York, United States. 26 minutes of Grosbeak madness. Grab a cup of coffee! And thanks to all the birders who left comments yesterday.

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In Case You Might Miss…

(1) Naptime for Donald

(2) Pennsylvania battleground;

(3) Columbia pro-Palestine demonstration.

* * *


“So many of the social reactions that strike us as psychological are in fact a rational management of symbolic capital.” –Pierre Bourdieu, Classification Struggles

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Less than a year to go!

RCP Poll Averages, April 19:

Here this Friday’s RCP polling. Trump is still doing very well in almost all the Swing States (more here), leading with one exception: PA. Forget all the arithmetic, and look at PA as a test of the Trump campaign’s basic competence. What are they doing to fix this? (I’ll work out a better way to present this, but for now: Blue dot = move toward Biden; red dot = move toward Trump. No dot = no change (presumably because state polls are not that numerous so far from election day).

* * *

Trump (R): Strategic napping:

Nonsense. Trump is a “back row kid,” in Chris Arnade’s formulation (or playing at being one). The front row kids at the DNC don’t get it.

Trump (R): Does quoting other people violate the gag order?

Perhaps not in the public mind (“He never said it! This other guy said it!”)

Trump (R): “Jury of 12 Is Seated in Trump Criminal Trial” [New York Times]. Juror #1: “works in sales” (West Harlem); #2: “works in finance” (Hell’s Kitchen); #3 “works in the legal field” (Chelsea); #4: “an engineer” (Upper West Side); #5: “works in education” (Harlem); #6: “works in technology” (Chelsea): #7: “works in the legal field” (Upper East Side); #8: “worked in finance” (Upper East Side); #9: “works in an educational setting” (Upper East Side); #10: “businessman” (Murray Hill); #11 “product manager” (Upper Manhattan); and #12 “works in health care” (Upper East Side). • Spot the lone holdout! Seriously, four from the Upper East Side? What’re the odds? Also, I don’t think the two finance people will be too happy with Trump’s, let’s face it, shenanigans. even if compliance is for thee and not for me.

Trump (R): “2 of Trump’s jurors are lawyers. Would they acquit on a technicality?” [Politico]. “Of the seven jurors selected for Trump’s hush money trial so far, one is a civil litigator at a large white-shoe law firm, and another is a corporate lawyer at a firm focused on start-ups and venture capital…. One of the lawyers on Trump’s jury, the civil litigator, signaled during jury selection that he was well aware of that concern. ‘I’m a litigator,’ he said, ‘so I take the law seriously, and I take judges’ instructions very seriously.'” • This ran in Links this morning, but I want to file away the specialities of the two lawyers.

Trump (R): Of course, this isn’t a “hush money” case (see NC here). But if it were:

Who knows? Maybe we’ll get lucky and Bragg will disclose his theory of the case on Monday!

Trump (R): Interesting example of Trump’s “local campaigning” in Manhattan:

* * *

Kennedy (I): Before you click through, it’s pay-per-view:

* * *

“Democrats begin to outpace Republicans in fundraising for key House races” [NBC]. “Democratic candidates outraised Republicans in almost every one of the most competitive seats in the race for the House, according to new fundraising reports filed this week, a setback for Republicans who had been hoping their candidates were turning a corner…. Ten of the 11 Republican incumbents in races rated as “toss ups” by The Cook Political Report with Amy Walter were outraised by at least one Democratic challenger…. Republican incumbents who were outraised include: Reps. David Schweikert and Juan Ciscomani of Arizona; John Duarte, David Valadao, Mike Garcia and Ken Calvert of California; Tom Kean Jr. of New Jersey; and Mike Lawler, Marc Molinaro and Anthony D’Esposito of New York…. And Republican candidates were also outraised in two other ‘toss-up’ seats being vacated by Democratic incumbents in Michigan.”

* * *

PA: Video from Trump rally at Schenksville. described yesterday:

Impressive. Not dispositive, of course; think of Sanders.

PA: Organizing PA:

We’ll see. I don’t see how the ground war beat the air war if the ground war doesn’t have enough money — or a candidate who can’t rally the troops because he’s in court. (I would speculate from yesterday tha\t many of those truckers are likely to be Latino, a demographic where Trump is gaining. Thinking in terms of identity politics, it’s will be a pretty neat trick to get the Amish and Latino truckers lined up on the same side.)

PA: “Biden v. Trump: The Fight for Pennsylvania Is On” [Philadelphia Gay News]. “When Trump was in Schnecksville, where a large crowd waited in line for three hours to see him, Biden was dealing with a possible global crisis. Iran had attacked Israel in a retaliatory missile and drone strike in response to Israel’s earlier attack on an Iranian embassy, taking out Hamas figures tied to Iran. That juxtaposition made for some strange moments at the Schnecksville event when the crowd chanted ‘Genocide Joe,’ a rallying cry usually associated with far-left pro-Palestinian protesters. In response, Trump said, ‘They’re not wrong, they’re not wrong. He’s done everything wrong.'” There’s Trump’s A/B testing, right there. More: “That chanting highlighted a difficult issue for Biden that will likely follow him throughout the primary and possibly into November. Those chants may have been ignored by the Biden camp, which was trying to contain an increasingly rogue Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, but it was not ignored by either the media nor leftists themselves, many of whom are considering ways to vote ‘uncommitted” in the Pennsylvania primary April 23.” • Sort of amazing to see “Genocide Joe” “jump the species barrier” like that; and so fast!

PA: “A Biden Victory in November Turns On This State” [New York Times]. “As Mr. Biden works to sell voters on his accomplishments, and himself, he will have to do it across wildly different parts of Pennsylvania. Winning here means playing everywhere, say the state’s political hands — pretty much all of whom can recite the vote margins a Democrat needs to aim for in Philadelphia, its collar counties, Allegheny (home to Pittsburgh), this western enclave, that area of the Lehigh Valley and even the ‘T counties’ running up the center and across the top of the state that typically go Republican. Boiled down, the blue-team blueprint is: run up the numbers in and around Philly, do well in Allegheny and other select spots and hold down Republicans’ margins of victory in the more rural areas. ‘You can’t rely on the places traditionally friendly to us. You have to close the margins in places we’re not going to win,’ said Lt. Gov. Austin Davis, a Democrat. Take the reliably red counties of Westmoreland, in the Pittsburgh region, and rural Northumberland, he offered: ‘You can lose 60-40, but you can’t lose 70-30. It makes a huge difference.’ ‘Margins matter!’ confirmed State Representative Malcolm Kenyatta, who is running statewide for auditor general. This is especially true if turnout in Philadelphia is not so hot — which, Democrats say, has been the case for several years.”

* * *

Republican Funhouse

Very funny:

I can’t sort which Ukrainian ox is gored by MTG’s amendment, but it would be amusing if it were the Banderites.

Democrats en Déshabillé

The next Democrat Mama Bear is good but I’m not buying it:

Tne party of lawfare and the Censorship Industrial Complex doesn’t have standing to defend “our democracy.”

Realignment and Legitimacy

Filing the Columbia protests here, because shades of 1968. This is in no sense exhaustive!

Columbia (1): Cornel West (and not anyone else):

Columbia (2): DEI doing what it’s supposed to do:

Columbia (3): LIfe in the Big House:


“I am in earnest — I will not equivocate — I will not excuse — I will not retreat a single inch — AND I WILL BE HEARD.” –William Lloyd Garrison

* * *

Covid Resources, United States (National): Transmission (CDC); Wastewater (CDC, Biobot; includes many counties; Wastewater Scan, includes drilldown by zip); Variants (CDC; Walgreens); “Iowa COVID-19 Tracker” (in IA, but national data). “Infection Control, Emergency Management, Safety, and General Thoughts” (especially on hospitalization by city).

Lambert here: Readers, thanks for the collective effort. To update any entry, do feel free to contact me at the address given with the plants. Please put “COVID” in the subject line. Thank you!

Resources, United States (Local): AK (dashboard); AL (dashboard); AR (dashboard); AZ (dashboard); CA (dashboard; Marin, dashboard; Stanford, wastewater; Oakland, wastewater); CO (dashboard; wastewater); CT (dashboard); DE (dashboard); FL (wastewater); GA (wastewater); HI (dashboard); IA (wastewater reports); ID (dashboard, Boise; dashboard, wastewater, Central Idaho; wastewater, Coeur d’Alene; dashboard, Spokane County); IL (wastewater); IN (dashboard); KS (dashboard; wastewater, Lawrence); KY (dashboard, Louisville); LA (dashboard); MA (wastewater); MD (dashboard); ME (dashboard); MI (wastewater; wastewater); MN (dashboard); MO (wastewater); MS (dashboard); MT (dashboard); NC (dashboard); ND (dashboard; wastewater); NE (dashboard); NH (wastewater); NJ (dashboard); NM (dashboard); NV (dashboard; wastewater, Southern NV); NY (dashboard); OH (dashboard); OK (dashboard); OR (dashboard); PA (dashboard); RI (dashboard); SC (dashboard); SD (dashboard); TN (dashboard); TX (dashboard); UT (wastewater); VA (dashboard); VT (dashboard); WA (dashboard; dashboard); WI (wastewater); WV (wastewater); WY (wastewater).

Resources, Canada (National): Wastewater (Government of Canada).

Resources, Canada (Provincial): ON (wastewater); QC (les eaux usées); BC (wastewater); BC, Vancouver (wastewater).

Hat tips to helpful readers: Alexis, anon (2), Art_DogCT, B24S, CanCyn, ChiGal, Chuck L, Festoonic, FM, FreeMarketApologist (4), Gumbo, hop2it, JB, JEHR, JF, JL Joe, John, JM (10), JustAnotherVolunteer, JW, KatieBird, LL, Michael King, KF, LaRuse, mrsyk, MT, MT_Wild, otisyves, Petal (6), RK (2), RL, RM, Rod, square coats (11), tennesseewaltzer, Tom B., Utah, Bob White (3).

Stay safe out there!

* * *

Airborne Transmission: Monkeypox

“Mpox, smallpox and the increasing threat of orthopoxvirus epidemics” [Global Biosecurity]. “We should be on high alert for orthopoxvirus epidemics because of large, ongoing epidemics of mpox in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Mpox has been resurgent in the African continent in countries like Nigeria and DRC since 2017, where the infection is endemic in animals and can be zoonotic or human-to-human transmitted… In fact, smallpox and mpox are respiratory viruses, and mpox has been identified in ambient air.” • I’m sure Baggy Blues will do the job, totally.

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TABLE 1: Daily Covid Charts

National[1] Biobot April 15: Regional[2] Biobot April 15:
Variants[3] CDC April 13 Emergency Room Visits[4] CDC March 23
New York[5] New York State, data April 18: National [6] CDC April 6:
National[7] Walgreens April 15: Ohio[8] Cleveland Clinic April 6:
Travelers Data
Positivity[9] CDC March 25: Variants[10] CDC March 25:
Weekly deaths New York Times March 16: Percent of deaths due to Covid-19 New York Times March 16:


1) for charts new today; all others are not updated.

2) For a full-size/full-resolution image, Command-click (MacOS) or right-click (Windows) on the chart thumbnail and “open image in new tab.”


[1] (Biobot) Our curve has now flattened out at a level far above valleys under Trump. Not a great victory. Note also the area “under the curve,” besides looking at peaks. That area is larger under Biden than under Trump, and it seems to be rising steadily if unevenly.

[2] (Biobot) No backward revisons….

[3] (CDC Variants) As of May 11, genomic surveillance data will be reported biweekly, based on the availability of positive test specimens.” “Biweeekly: 1. occurring every two weeks. 2. occurring twice a week; semiweekly.” Looks like CDC has chosen sense #1. In essence, they’re telling us variants are nothing to worry about. Time will tell.

[4] (ER) CDC seems to have killed this off, since the link is broken, I think in favor of this thing. I will try to confirm. UPDATE Yes, leave it to CDC to kill a page, and then announce it was archived a day later. And heaven forfend CDC should explain where to go to get equivalent data, if any. I liked the ER data, because it seemed really hard to game.

[5] (Hospitalization: NY) Flattening out to a non-zero baseline. I suppose to a tame epidemiologist it looks like “endemicity,” but to me it looks like another tranche of lethality.

[6] (Hospitalization: CDC) Still down. “Maps, charts, and data provided by CDC, updates weekly for the previous MMWR week (Sunday-Saturday) on Thursdays (Deaths, Emergency Department Visits, Test Positivity) and weekly the following Mondays (Hospitalizations) by 8 pm ET†”.

[7] (Walgreens) Leveling out.

[8] (Cleveland) Slight uptrend?

[9] (Travelers: Posivitity) Still down.

[10] (Travelers: Variants) JN.1 dominates utterly.

[11] Looks like the Times isn’t reporting death data any more? Maybe I need to go back to The Economist….

Stats Watch

There are no official statistics of interest today.

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Today’s Fear & Greed Index: 32 Fear (previous close: 34 Fear) [CNN]. One week ago: 46 (Neutral). (0 is Extreme Fear; 100 is Extreme Greed). Last updated Apr 19 at 12:03:21 PM ET.

News of the Wired

“Up in the air: Presence and collection of DNA from air and air conditioner units” [Electrophoresis] “Results of this pilot study show that human DNA can be collected on air conditioner unit surfaces and from the air, with air samples representing the more recent occupation while air conditioner units showing historic use of the room.” • Now here’s a happy thought!

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Contact information for plants: Readers, feel free to contact me at lambert [UNDERSCORE] strether [DOT] corrente [AT] yahoo [DOT] com, to (a) find out how to send me a check if you are allergic to PayPal and (b) to find out how to send me images of plants. Vegetables are fine! Fungi, lichen, and coral are deemed to be honorary plants! If you want your handle to appear as a credit, please place it at the start of your mail in parentheses: (thus). Otherwise, I will anonymize by using your initials. See the previous Water Cooler (with plant) here. From Desert Dog:

Desert Dog writes: “After the photo I took this morning of the snow wood pile and tree, this afternoon I was walking around in a fierce wind and found something my partner snuck in the ground on the south side of my doghouse last year evidently.” Normally I try to maintain the Plant queue in some rough order, but I felt this was newsworthy. (Nice woodpile that was, too!)

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About Lambert Strether

Readers, I have had a correspondent characterize my views as realistic cynical. Let me briefly explain them. I believe in universal programs that provide concrete material benefits, especially to the working class. Medicare for All is the prime example, but tuition-free college and a Post Office Bank also fall under this heading. So do a Jobs Guarantee and a Debt Jubilee. Clearly, neither liberal Democrats nor conservative Republicans can deliver on such programs, because the two are different flavors of neoliberalism (“Because markets”). I don’t much care about the “ism” that delivers the benefits, although whichever one does have to put common humanity first, as opposed to markets. Could be a second FDR saving capitalism, democratic socialism leashing and collaring it, or communism razing it. I don’t much care, as long as the benefits are delivered. To me, the key issue — and this is why Medicare for All is always first with me — is the tens of thousands of excess “deaths from despair,” as described by the Case-Deaton study, and other recent studies. That enormous body count makes Medicare for All, at the very least, a moral and strategic imperative. And that level of suffering and organic damage makes the concerns of identity politics — even the worthy fight to help the refugees Bush, Obama, and Clinton’s wars created — bright shiny objects by comparison. Hence my frustration with the news flow — currently in my view the swirling intersection of two, separate Shock Doctrine campaigns, one by the Administration, and the other by out-of-power liberals and their allies in the State and in the press — a news flow that constantly forces me to focus on matters that I regard as of secondary importance to the excess deaths. What kind of political economy is it that halts or even reverses the increases in life expectancy that civilized societies have achieved? I am also very hopeful that the continuing destruction of both party establishments will open the space for voices supporting programs similar to those I have listed; let’s call such voices “the left.” Volatility creates opportunity, especially if the Democrat establishment, which puts markets first and opposes all such programs, isn’t allowed to get back into the saddle. Eyes on the prize! I love the tactical level, and secretly love even the horse race, since I’ve been blogging about it daily for fourteen years, but everything I write has this perspective at the back of it.


  1. Feral Finster

    “Today we’re going to see Columbia University’s first Arab president work with New York City’s black cop mayor work with the nypd’s first Latino Chief to arrest as many diverse students as possible. Only in America™️”

    As Lambert points out – this is exactly what DEI is intended to do – to provide cover to let authorities do what they want and to furnish woke insurance against any criticism.

    Just like, if you are a man accused of rape, you want to hire a female lawyer if the case goes to trial. The same logic is why management like to hire females in HR to swat down pesky sexual harassment claims.

  2. griffen

    Just occurred to me that tomorrow is April 20… I’ll presume that’s still a thing and just maybe the social media handlers at headquarters for the X platform keep their boss occupied with – well really anything. If memory serves me well, Musk has this tendency to send out the most odd tweets on or surrounding that date.

    Might have been a little wrong on the timing for his initial offer..but his price did have an odd round price per share though!


    1. The Rev Kev

      By coincidence, April 20th was the birthday of AH. I wonder if it will be celebrated in some parts of the Ukraine?

  3. Tom Stone

    The question I would like an American reporter to ask of Kirby, a White House spokesperson and an official Israeli spokesperson is simple.
    “When did the Palestinians stop being Semites?”
    I predict a record low turnout for the November Election if it is still Genocide Joe Vs Cheetoh Doofus.
    I have seen NO yard signs and a total of one “Biden/Harris 24” bumper sticker to date.
    Since Stein is the only anti war candidate she will get my vote and likely quite a few others.

    1. nippersdad

      Lots of questions I would like to ask of Kirby, rat-face and that Indian guy. One of them would be how we can spend hundreds of millions of dollars annually on intelligence but cannot look up where the Iranian consulate in Damascus is in the phone book. Going on two weeks now and I see that they are still in investigation mode to figure out what that building Israel bombed actually was.

      Those people are just intolerable.

      1. Feral Finster

        They know full well. They know that they are hypocrites, but as long as there are no consequences for their hypocrisy, they do not care.

      2. Amfortas the Hippie

        brings up a thing ive been meaning to ask of all yall….is it true that we(USA “taxpayers”) have been paying for israeli universal healthcare?
        i see it mentioned on twitter a lot…from everybody but the blue checks, of course….but when ive tried to run it down, i run into a world-sized wall of he said/she said, and cannot find any objective reporting.

        ive seen the same allegation…just at a much lower frequency…regarding ukraine.

        it interests me greatly…since my country apparently hates me, and made me wait almost 7 years for a hip replacement, and all.
        clarity would be appreciated…and i regret assigning homework.

        1. Objective Ace

          Israel has free healthcare and money is fungible. Since we’re paying their defense budget it frees up money for Israel to spend elsewhere

        2. nippersdad

          CFR recently put out an article that was most notable for its’ charts, one of which shows a break down of what we have been giving them over the years. Apparently the economic aid to Israel has been declining for years now, but they had been getting a great deal of it to spend however they wished prior to ’07. It is now, exclusive of new funding, around eight mil a year. Presumably that new funding in Congress will follow the Ukraine pattern, where we make up for their budgetary deficits by putting them on our own tab. So, yes, we are prolly going to be paying for their healthcare, again.


          As Objective Ace points out, even without new funding they still get a minimum of 3.8 billion a year for their military; money is fungible and I doubt there will be many accountants on the case.

          As far as Ukraine goes, they no longer have an economy. What they have are subsidies from the EU and US that make up nearly their entire domestic budget…………….

          IIRC, we were also the primary funders of UNWRA, who built and staffed all of the hospitals we paid to destroy in Gaza as well, so you can look forward to the tab for rebuilding all of that once the war on Palestinians is over.

          So, as Sally Field once did not say: They hate us! They really do hate us all!


      3. The Rev Kev

        These are the same sort of people who back in 1999 said that they got the address of the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade wrong. Officially that is.

    2. John Steinbach

      Saw a t-shirt worn by a Latino day-laborer last week: “Nasty Tweets & Cheap Gas 2024”

      1. steppenwolf fetchit

        Someone could do a parody of that t-shirt saying: ” Nasty Tweets, Cheap Gas and More Global Warming Hotter and Faster 2024″

  4. Feral Finster

    Not surprisingly, the House agreed to give, sorry “loan” more money to Ukraine. Of course, this is a sham since everyone involved knows that this money will never be paid back.

    I told you that Johnson would fold, although I admit he held out longer than I expected him to. And it will not be the last time he folds. He’s now on about Russia being part of a “new axis of evil”.

    Meanwhile, Europe is gathering more Patriots to send to Ukraine.

    Russia made yet another mistake by dithering.

    1. The Rev Kev

      Alex Christoforou reports that there is a provision in that legislation where the sitting President can forgive that loan all by himself. And as they say with such cases, a loan is as good as a gift.

    2. Benny Profane

      What Patriots? Like there’s a giant warehouse full of them? If we and the Euros had a lot, they’d already have them and shot them off into space.

  5. Glen

    Hmm, how many people would [family blog] Clinton for $850K? Raise your hands. Everybody looks at bank and 401K balance, 50 million hands get raised.

      1. Glen

        Good point – let me rephrase that.

        How many of you want $850K because the Clinton’s already [family blogged] you? 100 million people raise their hands.

    1. Amfortas the Hippie

      define (family blog),lol.
      if it involves either of them wandering into the road while im trying to light a cig…well, then…yes.
      i’m all in.

      i admit that i harbor an unhealthy loathing for those people.
      they’ve done so much damage to the world, and yet still we’re expected to kowtow to them.
      the aphorism regarding urine and being on fire applies.

      1. Amfortas the Hippie

        and speaking of being on fire,,,another one lit himself.
        ive been reading as best i can his erstwhile reasoning/manifesto…and, like Bushnell…he aint exactly wrong, no?

        meanwhile, back in clownworld…i’ll reference this, so Lambert has no need to dirty himself:
        the gop in the House has formed a group to stand watch over the floor…so as to intercept any nefarious commie behaviour…the “floor action response team”…ie: Fart.
        the previous name, which they let go for nonobvious reasons, spelled out “Shart”…which would have been even more apropos.
        a day later, and #trump stinks, etc has been trending on X.

        i’ll miss y’all, of course…but i look forward to the time when the rest of the world sees fit to do an EMP in high altitude over CONUS.
        just for the sake of humanity.

        meanwhile…today was wife and i’s 25th anniversary.
        as usual on such pregnant dates, mom had a psychotic gleam in her eye this morning….she likes to unleash the random narcissistice rage events on just such auspicious days…my birthday, Tam’s b-day, day Tam died, etc.
        and i’m hurting because of the weather(and all the weeds i pulled yesterday), so i just hung out at the wilderness bar,reading, and cooking Mole(her fave…and with my own bird, too).
        i keep reminding myself…”at least a dude with the Football is not following her around everywhere…”

          1. barefoot charley

            An informative story, terribly sad how he had to publish it, but otherwise even fewer would read it.

            As for your story, bravo for grokking it well enough to retire to the wilderness bar. We all should have one.

          2. Amfortas the Hippie

            unfocus enough to allow the scholar from the far future to inhabit your brain for a time….
            the frelling simpsons might be regarded the way we regard Ovid.
            or perhaps more aptly, Juvenal.
            as with all that Antiquitous stuff, read between the lines.
            dude at least had a tenuous hold on the bigger picture…..what marx called superstructure…or, if you like yer bugs moldy, The Cathedral(loud minor chord on a pipe organ).
            i wish i could afford to read Wallerstein.

            1. skippy

              Never, never, loose sight of the future due too the past mate …

              Per se me being married to someone with a pronounced borderline personality disorder for 30 yrs, totally working off an inaccurate baseline. Boom stroke, boom divorce, boom some cashed up retired dentist bloke, big cat sail boat, months of international travel at a time, boom taking Valium 14 hr a day to stave off a psychotic episode on him, boom 2+yrs later he gives her the flick, boom I look after her two dogs for 3 yrs and now is around more than in all the years past, boom seeing a psych everyday along with neuropsychologist, all whilst I just met a very nice 52 yr old lady with some life experience but is so sweet and I have to thread the proverbial needle so life does not become a minefield … short list …

              At the end of the day I live on the other side of the orb and feel you … want to be with you on this day … random thoughts about doing a pop and bang insertion on your A.O. from the sky just to blow your mind and then do lots of silly stuff at your bar …

          1. Henry Moon Pie

            Or in Latin:

            Illegitimi non carbonrundum.

            Not real Latin and attributed to WW II British intelligence officers. As “Illegitimum non carborundum,” it’s the first line of the mock-Latin sung verse the Harvard Band appends to “Ten Thousand Men of Harvard.”

  6. Jeff V

    “Democratic candidates outraised Republicans in almost every one of the most competitive seats in the race for the House, according to new fundraising reports filed this week, a setback for Republicans who had been hoping their candidates were turning a corner”

    Is there any other country in the world in which you could see a report like this? Americans presumably see it as perfectly normal.

  7. InquiringMind

    The manifesto of the guy who set himself on fire outside the Trump trial is fascinating:

    He clearly seems to suffer from a mental illness, but he’s not totally crazy. The manifesto hits on lots of cogent points. Has some nutty tangents and some questionable logic/supportive arguments…but…I found myself nodding in agreement at quite a few of his assertions.

    I wish he didn’t feel the need to do this to himself to get the attention and I hope no one copies him…but I also hope that people consider his message.

    The episode reminds me of a quote from my high school Latin textbook: “In an insane world, the sane man is insane” – Seneca

    1. Feral Finster

      “A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him, saying, ‘You are mad; you are not like us.”
      ― St. Antony the Great

    2. Tom Doak

      Yes, I cannot wait to read Lambert’s report on this tomorrow. As some cannon fodder, here is USA TODAY’S headline for the story, as posted on AOL:

      “Police: Conspiracy theorist set himself on fire outside of Trump’s hush money trial”

      Hoo boy.

      1. InquiringMind

        The slogan in his Instagram:

        “We’re victims of a bi-partisan, totalitarian con that will soon collapse the economy”.

    3. britzklieg

      Whatever elements of truth might be found therein he seems deeply disturbed. Crypto may very well be a ponzi (others argue the same about the stock market) but it is only a tiny fraction of the global economy (1/10 the market cap of gold, which is totally dwarfed by the equities market which is minuscule compared to bonds) and could not possibly be the vehicle for a global economic meltdown.

      And The Simpson’s? Stanley Kubrick? Rob Loewe? Really?

      Poor fellow and a tragic, horrific fate.

      1. steppenwolf fetchit

        The trigger/fuse/whatever part of a bomb is very small compared to the rest of the bomb.

        Who is to say that a comprehensive collapse of the crypto con might not be the very first domino which starts all the rest of them falling in order?

    1. Henry Moon Pie

      Beautiful piece. It’s funny how the primal fear touched by a total eclipse in ’79 was the loss of the sun compared to our fears today.

      I watched the eclipse from the 5th floor of the staff lounge of a cancer hospital. An especially compassionate nurse unhooked my nose from its tube tether so I could get out of the hospital bed to see it. I had landed in that bed after a near-death experience in the ER a couple of nights previous where a blockage caused by chemo had stretched my stomach to twice its size and shifted my innards all over the place. They took 150 oz of black bile out of my stomach in that ER, a record, they thought.

      My comment to the half dozen nurses gathered there was no lament for the sun but a hope that our oncoming disaster could be averted:

      Luna’s trying to save Gaia by consuming Sol.

      I did get to see the corona for the first time in my life, and watching the city grow dark in the middle of the afternoon was quite a sight.

  8. lyman alpha blob

    RE: AOC

    A minute and thirty seconds of word salad before she finally remembers the talking point that Trump wants to “destroy democracy”. By trying to win more votes in a democratic election.

    She really is a dim bulb and my abject contempt for these knuckleheads knows no bounds. And I did think she had some promise at one point – now I’m just hoping GenocideJoe might mistake her for an ice cream cone and cannibalize her.

    1. Feral Finster

      I doubt that AOC is all that dumb, at least in the “IQ Test” sense. She’s probably no rocket surgeon, either, for that matter. Rather, she is first, last and always tribal.

      If her tribe requires her to parrot obvious lies to her own detriment, follow barking insane leaders, do or suffer horrible things, then she will do so, in each case, without question. Because Tribe. Take away the tribal identity, and she has no identity left.

      If the Establishment is good at nothing else, it is very good at figuring out whom to buy off, whom to co-opt, whom to neutralize, whom to ignore.

      AOC was co-opted.

      1. Dr. John Carpenter

        AOC was a project. And the truly brilliant part about it is, she doesn’t even realize it.

        1. Bugs

          She still is a project. The Dems fully expect her to be president within 2 cycles. Heck, even I do, if the whole thing hasn’t collapsed by then. My relatives, Reagan conservatives, like her. They don’t like her “left wing” politics but they like her, AOC.

          1. ambrit

            Good heavens. America’s first bartender President.
            She really would be another Project President. The Public can project upon her all of the virtues they wish that they had themselves.

      2. Jason Boxman

        And a project it must have been; they certainly did seem to try to primary-her at least that first election cycle. But you’ll notice that hasn’t been the case for ages; she’s one of the team, if she ever wasn’t from the start.

      3. Amfortas the Hippie

        and i was sad to see it.
        like with bernie.

        wife and i rode out of matagorda texas that morning….with the first inklings of what would turn out to be terminal cancer…in the fog, listening to npr gush about AOC having won.
        brilliant dawn in the fog, southwest of houston, in traffic…and there was a semblance of hope.
        wife and i smiled and laughed.
        and AOC is not as hawt as Tulsi, but she’d do in a pinch, as they say in certain quarters.
        easy to watch her talk.
        is her waitress backstory just a better executed “Man from Hope” thing, then?
        are they that sophisticated?
        somehow i doubt it,lol…even though that would be squarely within their wheelhouse of symbol manipulation…Ha!
        more likely, she went in as she presented herself…and got a meeting with the eye of sauron, or whatever…was made to sacrifice a child to the grasshopper god in the basement, or something…and decided against fearing light aircraft forevermore.

  9. Smith, M.J.

    >Two lawyers on Trump jury

    A lawyer on a jury is not that rare. I spent 25 years practicing employment law, and during that time got picked to serve on 4 different juries, both civil and criminal trials. In my second career as a federal magistrate judge, I got picked again for a 3-day jury trial on a sworn account. I kept the jury badge as a souvenir to show prospective jurors in my courtroom that I knew what they were going thru, and would not let the lawyers waste their time.

    What is rare is to have 2 lawyers on the same panel. One lawyer will definitely carry some sway over lay jurors; I was elected foreperson on every jury I served. Two lawyers will either dominate the entire panel if they vote the same way, or cancel each other out if they don’t see eye to eye. Should be very interesting—pass the popcorn.

    1. Amfortas the Hippie

      im the only person i have ever known that actually wants to serve on a jury.
      i studiously avoid any mention of Nullification(but advise folks who want to be let go to mention that loudly),etc…but when the persecutor asks who can recite the fourth amendment, or whatever…i cant help myself.
      (and ive always been the only one to raise my hand, unless one of our few lawyers were in there(always excused, of course))

      1. WG

        Have covered a few trials as a reporter and best method I’d say to get excused is answer questions in as much detail as possible. More chance to rub one of the parties the wrong way. Answering questions with a simple yes or no or with few words as possible gives them nothing to challenge you on.

  10. Jason Boxman

    Traveling during a Pandemic; Braver than I, sir! I haven’t left western NC in 4 years. Dealing with a respirator from airport-to-plane-to-airport is more than I feel I can deal with, with constant fear either TSA will make me remove it, or plane staff, or I might need to drink.

    1. chris

      Not a bad idea! I have to fly a lot for work. The experience is miserable.

      Do you have a REAL ID? No, then do you have some other type of document we can request in an inconvenient way? Do you fly often? Then you will be offered for enhanced security screenings. If you don’t fly often, that is also suspicious, and we will volunteer you for enhanced screenings. In addition to the photo TSA will take of you, often so quickly you don’t even have the option to decline, which technically you can do, but that incurs further scrutiny. Then prepare for your small wave screening, your bags to be rifled through, waiting in line with tired people who don’t realize how rude they are, so you can scuttle through to your gate where you have the choice between overpriced things or extremely overpriced things to eat and drink. You will then proceed to a waiting area. None of the outlets will work. There will not be enough room to sit comfortably. But you will have more space in this area than when you board the aircraft. Did you buy expensive things to enjoy on board? No? Too bad! There will be too much turbulence for drinks or plastic peanuts to be served during the flight. If you take off that is. There will be congestion and other issues keeping you on the ground for longer than expected.

      And remember, from the rude and inconvenient treatment at the gate, to the rude and inconvenient treatment while you try to recover your checked luggage, you should be thankful. And quiet. You can’t criticize or threaten anyone. Or else you will have a special type of screening experience.

  11. Jason Boxman

    In fact, smallpox and mpox are respiratory viruses, and mpox has been identified in ambient air.

    Surprise, surprise. As I said during the initiate stages of the money pox Pandemic that is likely endemic here in the United States — because CDC — that we must assume it’s airborne until proven otherwise. So it wouldn’t surprise me if this is in fact true. Funny that we don’t hear about it at all anymore. Apparently it just “vanished”. They learned much from the SARS2 Pandemic, did they not? Dollars to doughnuts it is still very much circulating in this country.

  12. The Rev Kev

    ‘Jay in Kyiv
    The amendment that Marjorie Taylor Greene just proposed to sabotage the Ukraine bill is something that is such a nuanced Russian disinfo narrative that it could have only come directly from her Russian handlers.
    The notion that Hungarians are being persecuted in Ukraine is insane BUT it’s being pushed by both Orban (who was promised a piece of Ukraine by Putin) and Russian disinfo machine. For an American to suggest this really confirms she is being handled.’

    Yeah, this would be some guy in Kiev. Hungarian were heavily ‘recruited’ for this war and their culture come down on to the point that Hungary was issuing many of them with Hungarian passports if asked. Kiev has said that in 3 months time they will have eliminated the Russian language from their country so soon they will do the same for the Hungarians and Romanians in their country.

    1. yep

      This is not just some guy in Kiev. He is well known in the pro-Russian circles, for the sheer nonsense he writes all the time. People copy-paste his mumblings for the lolz, and don’t even bother countering.

    1. Belle

      He was a hero. When I first heard about him, I couldn’t help but admire him. Even the mainstream coverage that mentioned his life story was inspiring and showed his principles.
      It’s a shame that he’s dead and Craig Lang is alive.

    2. yep

      In case someone is confused, he wasn’t killed by his wife, nor the shelling. After the mentioned shelling happened, he went to help the victims, and never returned. He was supposedly kidnapped (his phone was found smashed in his car, etc.).

  13. The Rev Kev

    That must have been a helluva kimono that they showed to Speaker Johnson-

    ‘ “This is a critical time right now, a critical time on the world stage,” Johnson told reporters on Wednesday. “I think providing lethal aid to Ukraine right now is critically important. I really do. I really do believe the intel and the briefings that we’ve gotten.”
    “I believe [Chinese President] Xi [Jinping] and [Russian President] Vladimir Putin and Iran really are an axis of evil,” he continued. “I think they’re in coordination on this. I think that Vladimir Putin would continue to march through Europe if he were allowed.” ‘


    Marjorie Taylor Greene is gunning for him right now and has said that she does not care that if the Speakership becomes a revolving door.

    1. Belle

      Cyrus I. Scofield’s teachings are still doing damage. Perhaps soon some people may get a rude awakening from them.

    2. steppenwolf fetchit

      If enough DemParty Housemembers vote to retain Johnson as Speaker, then MTG’s effort may well fail.

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