Brexit – Live

 

In the video above you find a compelling explanation what Brexit is about really. Having watched some of the debates and quite a bit of coverage on BBC, ITV and a couple more news sites, I can fully agree with him. It is about immigration. And nationalism and then some immigration.

I’ll watch some of the BBC voting night coverage and will give you the first couple of developments live as they unfold. Then I will probably collapse, because I am not as young as I used to be when I joined you all for a night of music, booze and cigarettes on Music Night.

Whatever is the result tomorrow morning, I’ll let you know.

Fair warning: If they vote “Leave”, I will be seriously pissed off, because I still haven’t given up on the hope to spend my retirement in the North of England. I would have to go to Scotland instead, because the Scots will then leave the UK and reenter the EU.

Here’s a heat map of how Britons stand on the issue:

cegrab-20160315-113854-216-1-736x414

source: http://news.sky.com/story/1659864/skys-brexit-map-reveals-most-pro-leave-areas

So let’s get started….and hope for the best.

Sunday Roast: Can’t stop watching…

 

I admit it:  I can’t get enough of Drumpf getting the shit startled out of him when a protester made it past the security gates (although not on stage).  I wish I were more of a computer geek, so I could make a loop of the initial panicked grabbing of the podium, through the “I just want to go home” look when the secret service guys let him go back to inciting the crowd.

Drumpf was probably hoping they’d just rush him back onto the Drumpf Aeroplane, so he could he could have a bit of a crying jag — and then have his manservant bring him fresh drawers.  He talks tough, but I think he actually pissed himself in Dayton, OH.

You reap what you sow, you bombastic blibbering baboon.

This is our daily open thread — Watch it again!

 

The Watering Hole, Tuesday March 1, 2016 – Super Tuesday

We interrupt our regular programs to bring you up to the minute commentary by posters of this blog on the Super Tuesday primary event. As a way of introduction and background, here is a snippet from Raw Story:

Democrat Hillary Clinton aims to build an impregnable lead on “Super Tuesday,” the most consequential day of the presidential nominations calendar, while Republicans struggle to derail their insurgent and controversial front-runner Donald Trump.

With barely 24 hours before the big day, Clinton and Trump are well positioned to secure the lion’s share of the delegate bonanza in the 11 states voting in each party’s primaries.

Trump and Hillary? Let the voters decide.

Follow the money (per NBC News):

 

 

 

The Watering Hole, Saturday, February 6, 2016: Stumbling Bloc

When catching up on recent political issues yesterday (after having been focused a bit too much on that goddamned Bundy clan and their terrorist cohorts), I ran across this piece on ThinkProgress about the House “Freedom” Caucus. One of my first thoughts while reading it was “the term  ‘Freedom’ has absolutely no connection with the group’s raison d’etre“; after reading it, I grokked that ‘raison’ – reason – didn’t enter into the equation either. An excerpt:

[House Speaker Paul] Ryan spoke about the divisions in the Republican Party at a policy forum hosted by Heritage Action in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, pointing to groups within the party which demand things that are unachievable and refuse to work across the aisle in any way.
“When voices in the conservative movement demand things that they know we can’t achieve with a Democrat in the White House, all that does is depress our base and in turn help Democrats stay in the White House,” Ryan said. “We can’t do that anymore.”

Just a few hours later, four members of the roughly 40-person House Freedom Caucus, a faction of hardline Republicans, said that they will not work with the president and that realism and compromise will cause Republicans to lose elections.

Freedom Caucus member Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) directly addressed Ryan’s comments, saying that the measures the Speaker thinks are “unachievable” are actually just practical, “small things.”

“On the omnibus, the big spending legislation that happened at the end of last calendar year, our group went to leadership and we asked for a couple small things,” he said. “We said do something on this pro-life issue — after all we have this organization that gets your tax dollars and does all kinds of disgusting things. We said it doesn’t have to be defunded completely, but let’s just do something that’s going to protect the sanctity of life.”

According to a Roll Call piece from September 10th, 2015:

“The House Freedom Caucus has spoken.
On Thursday, the conservative HFC took their seventh official position: They will oppose any spending bill that doesn’t defund Planned Parenthood.

“Given the appalling revelations surrounding Planned Parenthood, we cannot in good moral conscience vote to send taxpayer money to this organization while still fulfilling our duty to represent our constituents. We must therefore oppose any spending measure that contains funding for Planned Parenthood.”

Apparently Rep. Jordan and his group are unaware – or willfully ignorant – of the fact that every investigation into the alleged “disgusting things” Planned Parenthood has been wrongfully accused of have found absolutely no evidence to back up those allegations. FFS, even Texas, after exonerating PP, is now prosecuting the criminals who produced the doctored video “proof” that Planned Parenthood was ‘selling baby parts for fun and profit.’ We all know that Texas HATES Planned Parenthood, so one would think that the turn of events there would give the Caucus pause. But, again, ‘reason’ doesn’t seem to enter into the collective mind of the Freedumb Caucus. But I digress…

The ThinkProgress excerpt continues:

“Another “small thing” Jordan pointed to was a request that legislation to reject Syrian refugees be tucked inside the must-pass omnibus spending measure. The bill would have temporarily halted Obama’s plan to bring roughly 10,000 refugees to the United States because of the persistent threats they face in Syria…
…Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) also implied Wednesday that he is not willing to compromise with others in his party, let alone with Democrats. He said that while he knows he has to be realistic with his expectations, “when you have the will of the people and their voice behind you, it’s amazing what you can accomplish.”

I love the way these (in reality) extreme policy shifts are described as “small things.” And it’s particularly ironic that what the House Freedom Caucus considers to be “small things”, which Speaker Ryan called “unrealistic”, are the same things that the current Republican Presidential candidates are running their campaigns on: overturning Roe v Wade, immigration – along with their favorite hopeless cause, repealing Obamacare. Yes, they’re still wasting time trying to overturn Obamacare, now for the 63rd time. I guess that the Repubican’s motto is “if at first you don’t succeed, keep trying and the hell with real governing.”

Pew Research has an interesting piece from October of 2015 on Congress’s “Freedom Caucus.” Here’s a snippet that I found insightful:

“…the Freedom Caucus does not officially disclose who belongs to it (aside from its nine founding members)[**], though various unofficial lists have circulated. Membership is by invitation only, and meetings are not public.”
What most distinguishes the Freedom Caucus from other House Republicans has been their willingness to defy the wishes of leadership…and to band together with like-minded Republicans who threaten to block any temporary measure to fund the government that didn’t also defund Planned Parenthood.”

**Congressman Matt Salmon (R-AZ) issued a “press release” on January 26th, 2015, announcing the formation of the House Freedom Caucus and its mission statement:

“The House Freedom Caucus gives a voice to countless Americans who feel that Washington does not represent them. We support open, accountable and limited government, the Constitution and the rule of law, and policies that promote the liberty, safety and prosperity of all Americans.
The HFC’s founding members are Rep. Scott Garrett, Rep. Jim Jordan, Rep. John Fleming, Rep. Matt Salmon, Rep. Justin Amash, Rep. Raúl Labrador, Rep. Mick Mulvaney, Rep. Ron DeSantis and Rep. Mark Meadows.”

Along with another 30-odd (very odd!) hard-right Republicans who joined the HFC, after John Boehner decided to give up the position (I suspect mainly so that he could just go home and get drunk,) this small bloc of ultra-conservatives nearly derailed their own party’s contest for the House Speakership by issuing a list of demands questions for Speaker hopefuls. A couple of their “questions” include:

“Would you ensure that the House-passed appropriations bill do not contain funding for Planned Parenthood, unconstitutional amnesty, the Iran deal, and Obamacare?”

~ and ~

“Would you commit to impeach IRS commissioner John Koskisen and pressure the Senate to take it up?”

So they also still believe that the IRS was unfairly targeting conservative groups, despite investigations showing that both religious-right AND non-religious left tax-exempt organizations were audited by the IRS? Paul Ryan is right, they DO need to be “realistic.”

This “freedumb” caucus apparently has zero interest in actual freedom, or governing, or anything beyond their own pseudo-christian-induced tunnel vision. And they’re more than happy to not only fuck with their own party, they’re delighted to fuck with the entire country. As many parents have said to erring children, “This is why we can’t have nice things.”

This is our daily Open Thread–have at it!

Sunday Roast: Another year gone; what have we learned?

I know I’ve posted this video a few times over the years, in one form or another, but I’m posting it again.

Why?  That’s a good question.  I’m glad you asked.

I don’t know if it’s because I’m feeling especially pessimistic or cynical these days, but I’m thinking that we haven’t learned anything over the past year.  Maybe it’s just that the United States is absolutely fucking bonkers right now, and I’m having trouble seeing the good in the world; or maybe we’re at a critical turning point, and, much like correcting a naughty child, the behavior gets much worse before it starts getting better.

I hope it’s both, and I hope the “getting better” part starts happening soon.

This is the last Sunday Roast of the year — What do you think?

The Watering Hole; Friday September 25 2015; Pope v. Wingnuts

So. Pope Francis is in the US, and he spoke to Congress. In case anyone missed it, here’s a transcript of his interesting and compelling speech:

Pope Francis’ address to Congress

From the Washington Post, this first reaction:

Pope Francis implores Congress to accept immigrants as their own

And here’s what is probably just a preview of the tone (and the intellectual desolation) the Wingnut reaction will ultimately embrace:

And then there’s this: the more-than-elegant-and-appropriate reaction to the Wingnut reaction(s) by critters who (mostly) reside “out there.” Curiously, I couldn’t agree more, nor could I have said (or portrayed) it better. Fascinating that geese and bugs both understand the problem AND are perfectly willing to toss the proper salute to each and all of the intellectually challenged hominids (aka Wingnuts).

Reminds me of an old song. Lessee: How’d go? Something like

Birds do it . . .

Sep 19 goose dive 1893Sep 19 geese dive 1888Bees do it . . .Bee in cactus bloom 2aEven educated – ummm – bugs(?) do it . . .

Bug on Sunflower 352aLet’s do it, let’s fall . . . Something like that

Glenn Beck definitely earned that standard ‘salute’ when, following Pope Francis’ speech, he tweeted:

The Popes speech was a “Mr Gorbachev tear down this wall” moment. Unfortunately, the “wall” is capitalism.

Do we dare hope? I mean, if “capitalism” is to ultimately be defined by the radical right wing in this country, then I, for one (E Pluribus Unum?), could most assuredly agree with Beck’s nonsensical ‘conclusion.’ Meanwhile, to Beck and all the others of his mental ilk,  I do hereby toss to each and all of them the ‘intelligent’ species’ version of the “signals” portrayed above — as demonstrated via George Bush’s “eloquent” (sotospeak) ass-ignation (sotospeak):

Der FingerMany of us may not agree with every one of the premises advanced by Pope Francis in his speech before Congress, but hopefully disagreement with the crapola advanced by the Wingnuttistanians will be manifest to the point where their influence on the nation’s politic will be permanently dismissed by the electorate — ASAP. Because, should those nutcases EVER gain full power of the state, the operative words will soon become those that traditionally signal the termination of a given tale: The End.

Or, stated another way,

Sep 6 Shadow in the flowers cr 1814GRRRRR!! (sort of)

OPEN THREAD

The Watering Hole; Thursday September 24 2015; *BatShite Craziness*

T.S. Eliot, in the opening verse of his poem entitled The Hollow Men, wrote . . .

We are the hollow men
We are the stuffed men
Leaning together
Headpiece filled with straw. Alas!
Our dried voices, when
We whisper together
Are quiet and meaningless
As wind in dry grass
Or rats’ feet over broken glass
In our dry cellar

. . . and with those forty-three words perfectly summed up and described each and all of those screwballs who drive this day’s American political insanity. The fact that Eliot penned this work ninety years ago — in 1925 — suggests he was either *extremely* prescient or that there were lots of ‘Hollow Men’ nutcases around even way back then. In any case, his ‘definition’ is a perfect fit, these days, as it describes a very large number of our very own wingnuts, including even the entire cadre of passengers in the Republican P-Candidate Clown Car.

In just the last few days, I’ve somehow managed to stumble across five of the absolutely most insane “ideas” I’ve read in at least the last year or two; and believe me, THAT is SAYING SOMETHING! If you should dare to wander in and take a closer look, prepare yourselves for the absolute pinnacle of *BatShite Craziness* — and understand that ANY help in redefining the entire concept will be most appreciated!

Savage: Obama’s Nomination Of Gay Army Secretary Proves He’s A Psychopath 

Michael Savage: Only Donald Trump Can Stop Obama From Killing Us All

‘I Don’t Believe In Women Voting’: Theodore Shoebat Declares That ‘Women Have No Place In Politics’

Theodore Shoebat Unhappy With Nomination Of A ‘Flaming Fag’ To Serve As Army Secretary

Theodore Shoebat: Force Gays To Submit To Christianity Through ‘Death And Strong Suppression’ 

And finally, one more consummate example of just how far into the muck and mire of intellectual desolation the human consciousness can sink. It took a little digging to find it, but when the topic is *BatShite Craziness*, this one not only speaks volumes, it also serves to suggest that the entire concepts both of .*BatShite Craziness* and of *Hollow Men* are WAY out of date and are in desperate need of redefinition.

The Ultimate Obama-Islam-Sharia-Agenda 21-Immigration-Debt Conspiracy

T.S. Eliot pretty much summed up the hopes and fears of the batshit crazy who waft and waddle among us with the final two lines of “The Hollow Men” —

This is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.

Whimper. Indeed. Are they capable of anything else?

******

OK, enough of that. On a far more reasonable note, I recently received a request to sign a petition from MoveOn.org. I admit I was a bit surprised to learn the the petition wasn’t about any sort of complaint or agenda, but was instead a Thank You to the US Surgeon General Vivek Murthy. MoveOn put the request this way:

The nation’s doctor has issued a rare Call to Action calling on cities and states across the country to invest in ways to make walking and biking safer, more attractive, and easier to use.

Less than half of Americans get enough daily physical activity to help ward off chronic health problems like obesity and cancer, but more “active transportation” options can be part of the solution.

By issuing this challenge to cities and states, Surgeon General Vivek Murthy recognizes that not only is this something more people want, but it’s also something we need.

Thank the Surgeon General for his leadership on keeping America healthy.

As one who very much enjoys the myriad benefits one can gain from the physical activity implicit in both walking and bicycling, I signed the petition immediately. Maybe some who read this will feel the same way? If so, here’s a link to a site that is NOT *BatShite Crazy*!

More Walking and Biking: Thank You Surgeon General!

OPEN THREAD