Words of Advice:

"If Something Seems To Be Too Good To Be True, It's Best To Shoot It, Just In Case." -- Fiona Glenanne

“The Mob takes the Fifth. If you’re innocent, why are you taking the Fifth Amendment?” -- The TOFF *

"Foreign Relations Boil Down to Two Things: Talking With People or Killing Them." -- Unknown

"If you believe that you are talking to G-d, you can justify anything.” — my Dad

"Colt .45s; putting bad guys underground since 1873." -- Unknown

"Stay Strapped or Get Clapped." -- probably not Mr. Rogers

"Eck!" -- George the Cat


* "TOFF" = Treasonous Orange Fat Fuck, A/K/A Dolt-45,
A/K/A Commandante (or Cadet) Bone Spurs,
A/K/A El Caudillo de Mar-a-Lago, A/K/A the Asset.

Monday, February 28, 2022

Sanctions

The Russian oligarchs are worried about their yachts.

Spare a tear for those greedy assholes.

Aeroflot Stops Flying to Much of the Western Hemisphere

Aeroflot Russian Airlines announced today it is suspending all flights to the United States, Mexico, Cuba and the Dominican Republic due to Canadian airspace restrictions.

Delta suspended its codeshare deal with Aeroflot soon after the war began.

In other aviation news, titanium might become nearly unobtainable, which will not be good news for the companies that make composite airliners.

Well, That's Unusual

Switzerland will adopt all the sanctions that the European Union has imposed on Russian people and companies and freeze their assets to punish the invasion of Ukraine, the government said in a sharp deviation from the country's traditional neutrality.

That's different. Usually, the Swiss take a stance that can be summed up as either "money talks" or "money has no conscience". For them to be choosing sides tells me something, but I'm not sure what.

Romney Speaks


Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, said Sunday that "it just makes me ill" to see people inside of the Republican Party praise Russian President Vladimir Putin as he wages war against Ukraine. Romney even went as far as to describe it as "almost treasonous" to side with Putin.

"A lot of those people are changing their stripes as they are seeing the response of the world and the political response here in the U.S.," Romney said during an interview on CNN's "State of the Union," when asked about pro-Putin sentiment within the Republican Party.

"But how anybody — how anybody in this country, which loves freedom — can side with Vladimir Putin — which is an oppressor, a dictator, he kills people, he imprisons his political opponents, he has been an adversary of America at every chance he's had — it's unthinkable to me. It's almost treasonous," he continued. "And it just makes me ill to see some of these people do that."

We all know the people to whom he is referring. It's worth remembering that, when Republicans lined up behind Trump's pressure campaign for mythological dirt on the Binden's, Romney was the only Republican senator to not only refuse to go along, he pretty much accused Trump of lying.

Sunday, February 27, 2022

Airspace Closes to Russian Aircraft (and a Thought)


A guess as to why Hungary hasn't joined in: Its president is a Putinite mini-me, who has been stripping his country of freedoms. I'm not sure why the Slovaks haven't joined in. Both countries should have people who can recall the fun of Russian tanks invading to shut down dissent. But maybe that's too far in the past for the Hungarians.

UPDATE: Canada has joined in.

UPDATE II: Spain has joined in.

UPDATE III: Now the entire EU has banned all Russian airplanes.

I doubt very much if the Russians imagined that this would go as tits-up for them as it has, both on the ground in Ukraine and the global reaction.

This could end up with Russia becoming a veritable Chinese vassal-state. The Russian ruble may go back to being a non-convertible currency, like the Soviet ruble. They may end up doing their exporting to China and being paid in Chinese renminbi, which, despite being designated as a global reserve currency, is still probably only useful for buying shit from China.

Heavy Lift Just Got Harder

The world's largest cargo airplane, the An-225, was reportedly destroyed by the Russians.
There was nothing else that had anywhere near the cargo capacity of the An-225.

Slava Ukraini! Heroiam slava!

SNL's cold open last night had the Ukrainian Chorus Dumka of New York:

Germany Chimes In

>Germany has just witnessed a truly historic day. Chancellor Olaf Scholz only came to power in December, but within 24 hours he has transformed modern Germany's foreign policy.

During an emergency parliamentary session on Ukraine on Sunday, Chancellor Scholz announced an additional $113bn (£84bn) for the German army.

There was an audible ripple of shock in parliament. Some MPs clapped, some booed, others looked stunned.

Undeterred, Mr Scholz went on to announce drastic measures that would have been unthinkable a week ago, including a constitutional commitment to Nato's military spending target of 2% of GDP - and he confirmed that Germany would be sending weapons direct to Ukraine.

Within a few days Vladimir Putin has managed to do what Nato allies have spent years trying to achieve: a massive increase of military spending in Germany.

Based on what I've been able to find about Germany's military spending, that is a doubling of the German military budget. Germany has been totally unwilling to go much above spending 1.4% of its GDP on its military since the end of the Cold War and even that for 2020 was a 30-year high.

Putin's been able to break Germany's near-pacifism in just a few days. Heckovajob, Vladdie.

So Much For "We Laugh At Your Sanctions."

In a dramatic escalation of East-West tensions over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, President Vladimir Putin ordered Russian nuclear forces put on high alert Sunday in response to what he called “aggressive statements” by leading NATO powers.
...
Putin, in giving the nuclear alert directive, cited not only the alleged statements by NATO members but the hard-hitting financial sanctions imposed by the West against Russia, including the Russian leader himself
.

This is madness on a scale unseen since Putin's intellectual ancestor was still yammering about ultimate victory in April of 1945 as his capital city was being shelled and bombed into heaps of rubble.

Meanwhile, the members of Putin's fan club in western Europe are trying to dissemble and step back from their full-throated embrace of the New Butcher of Ukraine. We should never forget who they are.

Also, the fucking Norks are clamoring for attention.

Your Sunday Morning Jet Noise

Two BUFFs landing in a strong wind:


You'll get a little glimpse of the crosswind gear in action.

The pilots were earning their flight pay that day.

Saturday, February 26, 2022

While I Was Paying Attention to Russian Fuckery, Texas Was Busily Being Texas

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is calling on “licensed professionals” and “members of the general public” to report the parents of transgender minors to state authorities if it appears the minors are receiving gender-affirming medical care.

The directive was part of a letter Abbott, a Republican, sent Tuesday to the Department of Family and Protective Services, calling on it to “conduct a prompt and thorough investigation” of any reported instances of minors undergoing “elective procedures for gender transitioning.”

Abbott’s letter follows an opinion released Monday by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, which stated that allowing minors to receive transition care such as puberty blockers, hormone therapy and surgery is child abuse under state law.

This is what so-called conservative politicians do: Interfere in the medical affairs of families in order to score cheap political points with their Christian Taliban base. Transgendered kids are their culture war target du jour. The Christian Taliban is like every other moralistic religious group (including the kiddie-fuckers in cassocks), they arrogate to themselves the right to decide what is right and wrong for you, for your family.

It's what they do. It's what they've always done. It's why, for many decades, it has been true that the best thing to see in Texas is the state line.

No Comment Needed, Ukrainian Ed.


Actually, one: I'm old enough to remember when the Soviets referred to the West as "the Imperialists". If there is a new imperialist these days, it is Russia.

Caturday

Big feet!

Friday, February 25, 2022

Russia to Finland and Sweden: "Nice Countries You Have There. Pity if Something Happened to Them."

Amid the ongoing Russian military operations in Ukraine, the country’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Friday that Moscow will have to respond if Sweden and Finland become NATO members.

“All OSCE member states in their national capacity, including Finland and Sweden, have reaffirmed the principle that the security of one country cannot be built at the expense of the security of others.

Obviously, the accession of Finland and Sweden to NATO, which is primarily a military alliance as you well understand, would have serious military and political consequences, which would require our country to make response steps,” Zakharova told a briefing
.

It would seem that one option for them is to join, now, while the Russians are tied up in Ukraine.

Meanwhile, Ol' Tucker, one of Putin's most prominent American backers, has apparently figured out that backing a dictator with delusions of empire is not a good idea.

In spite of Carleson's earlier parrotting of Russian propaganda, together with Trump and his fellow-travelers' full-throated approval of Putin, Americans are not buying it. Even though some teachers appear to be pushing pro-Russian propaganda: One open question: How will the West handle a million or more Ukranian refugees? It's not just the fighting that's on a scale that hasn't been seen in Europe since V-E Day, it will be the sheer number of displaced persons. Millions of people don't flee an army that is coming in to liberate them.

Because It's Friday

Red German steam:

Thursday, February 24, 2022

The Quisling Caucus....

... is lead by the Traitor in Chief:

Only hours before the Russian invasion of Ukraine began, former President Donald J. Trump again praised the cunning of President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia while lashing out at the intellect of President Biden.

“I mean he’s taking over a country for $2 worth of sanctions,” Mr. Trump said of Mr. Putin to donors and Republican lawmakers at Mar-a-Lago, his private club, on Wednesday. “I’d say that’s pretty smart.”

He isn't the only member of the Quisling Caucus, of course. But since he's Putin's Man in Mar-a-Lago, it's to be expected.

History will remember them and not with kindness.

Parachuting These Down, Here





And this, for things haven't changed very much.

Appeasers and Quislings

Two facts are beyond dispute this morning: The Russians have attacked a democratic nation that overwhelmingly chose to be independent of the USSR (amd them).

There is no shortage of American "conservatives" who are backing Putin.

Funny thing about those clowns: They denounce Trudeau for breaking up an occupation of Canada's capital by a bunch of obnoxious assholes, but they are fine with Putin invading a neighboring country and they are sympathetic to Putin's claim that Ukraine was once part of the Russian Empire and should so be again.

Maybe they should look at a map before approving of irrendentism:



Not that Mexico has the combat power to take back the territory that they lost to the United States in the 19th Century, but it is clear that if they could, they'd have the support of American conservatives.

Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Blast From the Past, Cold War Ed.

First, let's dust off the containment strategy.

Second, let's do another step from the Cold War: Ramp up defense spending by all free nations. That doesn't mean just us, that's every nation in NATO and our allies in the Pacific Rim. The Russians can't sustain such a contest, for they are an extraction-based nation and make very little that anyone else wants.

Third, when it comes to Russia's partner in this new Axis of Evil, it is high time that we recognize that hugging China economically in the hopes that they would integrate into the world's economy and moderate their policies has been a decades-long failure. As much as possible, we should sever economic links with China. This is something that we all can do: Look at the labels and if it says "Made in China", buy something else. If the company that makes it is owned by a Chinese entity, buy something else.

We will be lucky if the imminent Russian-Ukranian War doesn't spread into NATO, but if it doesn't, we had best recognize that we are in another Cold War and begin acting accordingly. Which means that we had better look at raising taxes on the rich in order to help pay for it. It should not all land on the backs of our descendents as deficit spending.

Operation Canned Meat II is Underway

The Kremlin said rebel leaders in eastern Ukraine asked Russia for military assistance Wednesday to help fend off Ukrainian “aggression” while Ukraine declared a nationwide state of emergency amid growing fears of an all-out invasion by Russian troops.

The announcement from Moscow immediately fueled fears that the rebel request amounted to a pretext for war — a tactic that the West has warned about for weeks.

Let's be clear about this: There is no independent reporting of Ukranian "aggression" against the rebels, even though it could be argued that fighting to take back your own territory hardly qualifieds as aggression. But Putin has his own vocabulary:


The Russians are conducting their propaganda campaign and the usual suspects are buying it.

What I said here stands.

Tuesday, February 22, 2022

A Blast From the Past, Here

... Nothing is certain in war and, in a war between two nuclear-armed nations, things can spiral out of control pretty quickly (that fear kept a war with the Soviet Union from ever breaking out).

But rationality rarely seems to prevail. History is replete with wars that began when one side thought they could gain an advantage by resorting to force of arms. History also shows that much of the time, the gain is not worth the cost. History also shows that while it takes two parties to maintain a peace, only one side need decide to start a war.

For our part, we had better keep in mind that we have potential adversaries on the horizon who fighters are not functionally illiterate sandal-wearing guerrillas. We might have to take on an adversary who has far more sophisticated weaponry than Kalashnikovs. That is not a fight that we can afford to learn on the fly
.

I wrote that eleven years ago. I was writing about the Chinese, but it would seem to apply to the Russians, as well.

We've spent the last two decades fighting enemies who weren't able to muster any serious technological threats beyond command-detonated IEDs. Rifles, machine guns, RPGs and the occaisional MANPAD was what they had.

We are on the cusp of having to fight a near-peer enemy. Pray to Your Dear and Fluffy Lord that we are ready. The Butcher's Bill may be steep and not just for those wihin shelling range.

Ah, Hell, You Know, Here





And a lagniappe:

If You're At a Classical Music Concert, and If They Announce That They are Taking Requests

Shout out: FREEBIRD!!!



Who knows, they might play it.

Or you might get ejected.

Russia Continues Its Farce at Being a Democracy

Russian lawmakers Tuesday authorized President Vladimir Putin to use military force outside the country — a move that could presage a broader attack on Ukraine after the U.S. said an invasion was already underway there.

Russia long ago abandoned any claim to being a democratic state. It is a de facto dictatorship. If Putin wanted a law requiring Russian men to wear their underwear on the outside of their trousers, the Russian legislature would pass a law requiring it in a day, if not less.

At least China honestly admits to being a one-party state that is ruled by a man who is dictator for life.

As I have observed before, we have heard this tune played in Europe eighty-four years ago. The question is going to be whether or not we will have to endure the entire symphony with its fiery climax and its denoument of famine and devastation.

Putin denies that he wants to rebuild the Russian empire. Nobody outside of the borders of Russia, except maybe Tucker Carlson (and You Know Who), believes him. Not even Russia's erstwhile friends believe it, otherwise they would be clamoring to recognize Russia's aggression. They know that Putin's bombastic claims that "Ukraine is not a country" would apply equally well to them.

On another note, Israel seems to have been remarkably silent when it comes to the Russian's Ukrainian fuckery. They can hardly denounce the Russians for annexing neighboring territory without being condemned for naked hypocrisy. The Israelis have evidently been quietly working with the Russians in Syria, which would explain why Russia and Israel haven't gotten into shooting disputes there.

But as things continue to worsen in eastern Europe, Israel will have to pick a side. Whether they want to or not.

Zuckerberg's Latest Scam

Flogging Whatsapp as a security tool:



First off, anybody who cares that their texts aren't "private" should have downloaded Signal. Full stop.

Second, people have been sending unsecured emails to one another since email was developed. There have been add-on programs for most email programs that provided end-to-end encryption and guess what? Damn few people ever bothered to use them.

This, ask yourself, why is Facebook, excuse me, Meta, flogging Whatsapp so heavily? The reason is the number of users of Facebook has begun to decline. Add to that the recent change in iOS privacy policies, where users have to opt-in to seeing ads, have hit Facebook hard. Scaring the rubes into downloading Whatsapp is one way for Facebook to claim it has more users for advertisers to reach, even if none of the new Whatsapp users ever bother to go to Facebook.

So, basically, it's all a Zukerbergian shell game. Don't play it.

About Fucking Time

U.S. women soccer players reached a landmark agreement with the sport’s American governing body to end a six-year legal battle over equal pay, a deal in which they are promised $24 million plus bonuses that match those of the men.
...
The USSF committed to providing an equal rate of pay for the women’s and men’s national teams — including World Cup bonuses — subject to collective bargaining agreements with the unions that separately represent the women and men.

It's been rank discrimination all along for the USSF to pay men more than women. Nobody outside of rabid soccer fans in the United States would have ever heard of the USSF if it wasn't for the sustained excellence of the women's team. The TV ratings are far higher for the women's games.

So yes, it's about fucking time, even if the quibbling about the collective bargaining agreements may be a loophole that one could steam a superstanker through.

Monday, February 21, 2022

Bet Putin Misses His Man in Washington

Remember this?

Russian Propaganda of Moscow Misha is Beyond Belief


Right. Russia never attacked anybody. I am reasonably certain that the Finns and the Poles would disagree with that. So would the Lithuanians, the Estonians, and the Latvians.

"Never" is a long time. Russia was an empire. They played the "Great Game" in the 19th Century with the Brits. The Russian Empire wasn't exactly formed by emissaries giving local lords and chieftains trays of pastries and satchels full of gold coins in exchange for them pledging fealty. Much of what was the Soviet Union was made up of countries that had been conquered and incorporated by the Russian Empire.

None of this is obscure shit. It doesn't take a master's degree in Russian history to know any of this.

But Moscow Misha is hoping that a large number of Americans are both ignorant and gullible, including many of the "news" hosts on the Murdoch Fascist Network.

Meanwhile, Ukranian weapons factories should be running 24/7. If there is any hint that Kalashnikov-USA has Russian ownership, it should be nationalized and set to making milspec AKs for export, until there is more than one rifle available for every Ukranian citizen above the age of fifteen.

Today



How goes it in your reality?

Sunday, February 20, 2022

Somehow

I have a suspicion that a Russian invasion of Ukraine won't be the cakewalk that people seem to be assuming that it will be.

Feel the Burn, Cancun Cruz

The Mexican Ambassador drops a truth bomb on the Great Flee-er.

“You spoke about a ‘breakdown of the rule of law’. I invite you to study what happened in our federal elections last June.

“All political parties, with no exception, accepted the results and kept moving forward to strengthen our democracy and freedom of expression."

Affluenza in CT

So... defendant illegally records minors in intimate situations. Pleads guilty and the court agrees to seal the records. And she may serve only ninety days?

Yep, affluenza is alive and well in Greenwich, CT. You can bet your ass that if she was some room-temperature-IQ cracker living in a trailer park and every other fact of the case was the same, she'd be doing a decade or more in prison and the court records would be open to the public.

A Decade On

My first cohort of cats began dying off.



Today, Gracie would be just a few months shy of her 25th birthday. So, one way or another, she would have been gone. But I still miss her.

Your Sunday Morning Prop Noise

Bunch of twin-engined goodness:

Saturday, February 19, 2022

Overlord Bezos Needs More Money For His Space-Penises

From an email from the Blue/White Store of Evil:

Thank you for being a valued member of Amazon Prime. We are writing to you about an upcoming change to your membership.

As of February 18, 2022, the price of the monthly Prime membership has increased from $12.99 to $14.99, and the price of the annual Prime membership has increased from $119 to $139. The new prices, plus applicable taxes, will apply after March 25, 2022, on the date of your next renewal.

There have been a couple of real stinkers recently on Prime Video, but those penis-rockets don't pay for themselves.

But None of That Shit Mentioned in My Previous Post Will Matter

Ukraine's Russian-backed breakaway eastern territories have ordered military mobilisations amid a deadly escalation in fighting.

Men of fighting age in the self-declared people's republics of Donetsk and Luhansk are being put on stand-by
.

The Russians are claiming that the Ukranian army is preparing to attack Russia, which is a lie that even Baghdad Bob would have deemed too implausible to speak.

Operation Canned Meat II is likely being prepared as I type this.

Remember When Cadet Bone Spurs Said That People Who Mishandle Classified Information and Don't Handle Official Records Properly Should Be Locked Up?

That was in 2016. But let a few years pass, and my oh my, how things have changed.

Classified information was found in the 15 boxes of White House records that were stored at former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence, the National Archives and Records Administration said in a letter that confirmed the matter has been sent to the Justice Department.

The Friday letter from the agency follows numerous reports around Trump’s handling of sensitive and even classified information during his time as president and after he left the White House.
...
No matter the legal risk, it exposes him to charges of hypocrisy given his relentless attacks during the 2016 presidential campaign on Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton for her use of a private email server as secretary of state
.

Yoju can bet your last paycheck that you will never hear a peep from the Party of Trump about any of this. Oh, they were so happy to chant "lock her up" in 2016 and later, but will they demand that Degustus-45 be held to the same standard that they, themselves, advocated for?

Signs point to "no".

Caturday

Elliott the Terrible:



He's a terror when it's time to clip his claws.

Friday, February 18, 2022

Because It's Friday

Some music of a sort:

Thursday, February 17, 2022

Tuesday, February 15, 2022

A Thought on Ukraine

The Russians might think that we are the last country on the planet with the standing to object to them doing a little forcible regime-changing of another country.

You know, Iraq, Panama, and so on.

New Heater Update - III

(Previous post)

S&W is replacing the gun.

Spitting These Down, Here




The Rats Are Bailing on DFT

The accounting firm that prepared former President Donald Trump’s annual financial statements says the documents, used to secure lucrative loans and burnish Trump’s image as a wealthy businessman, “should no longer be relied upon” after New York’s attorney general said they regularly misstated the value of assets.

In a letter to the Trump Organization’s lawyer Feb. 9, Mazars USA LLP advised the company to inform anyone who had gotten the documents not to use them when assessing the financial health of the company and the ex-president. The firm also said it was cutting ties with Trump, its highest-profile client.
...
“While we have not concluded that the various financial statements, as a whole, contain material discrepancies, based upon the totality of the circumstances, we believe our advice to you to no longer rely upon those financial statements is appropriate,” Mazars General Counsel William J. Kelly wrote to his Trump Organization counterpart, Alan Garten.

To paraphrase: "There's nothing wrong with the last ten years' worth of financial statements, but you shouldn't rely on anything we said about the Mar-a-Lago Lardo." How does that even begin to pass the sniff test?

Or is this just a convoluted way of saying "garbage in (TFG's lying information), garbage out (the financial statements)"?

One thing should be clear: His Future Feloniousness's claims about his financial condition are on a par with Russian Oluympians' statements about not taking banned substances: Both are things that are only taken at face value by the clueless.

The Russian Flu

That was a pandemic that happened 130 years ago. Since a number of the reported symptoms and effects were similar to that of COVID-19, researchers are scrambling to see if they can find any tissue samples from back then.

This could be interesting.

Monday, February 14, 2022

JWST First Light (sort of)



That's one star, as seen by 18 unaligned mirror segments. Now, they will move one segment, a little, and see which dot moves. Once they know which segment produced which dot, they can begin aligning them.

Which will take some time to do.

This Business Will Get Out if Control

As of this writing, I don't see a road to peace in Eastern Europe. Putin's demands that Ukraine submit to a 21st Century version of Finlandization and surrender much if not all of their sovereignity are non-starters. He's gotten his country to the point where they can't back down, much as the Germans did in 1914 (where, as the story goes, they had no plans to demobilize after mobilizing). But in Putin's case, there is no way that he can back down without Ukraine and NATO giving him what they cannot give.

I suspect that the Russian people themselves have no taste for going to war over Ukraine. But their views probably don't count for much. Now.

The only hope is that Putin will figure out that a war with Ukraine will result in everything that he doesn't want to see happen: A strengthened NATO, and more American military involvement. The nations on Russia's periphery will ramp up their defense spending. The Nordic nations that were neutral or Russian-tinged during the Cold War will align themselves, formally or informally, with NATO. But if he backs down without gaining some of what he wants, he'll be a paper tiger. Half-a-million dead will be a small price for Putin if it enhances his image as a strong man.

The risk is of a mistake. There is a history of antiaircraft missile batteries being a little trigger-happy. If a Russian battery near Ukraine's western border fires on a NATO warplane over NATO airspace, it may be game on.

Admiral Painter had it right:


With a hot war started by the Russians, we'll be a whisker, one miscalculation by a junior officer or senior NCO, from a situation where Russians and NATO forces, if not American forces, are firing at each other. A shooting war between nuclear-armed nations is something that the world has avoided since 1949, in a number of cases by a whisker, but here we are. There is no such thing as tactical nuclear weapons. What is "tactical" to one side may be "strategic" and then things are going to be so over for civilization.

This business will get out of control and we'll be lucky to live through it.

You woke up this morning,
Got yourself a gun..

Nice homage, Chevrolet, at the Super Bowl.



The actors in the commercial played Tony Soprano's kids.

The whole song.

Husband of Spawn of Walton's team won, if you care about such things.

Sunday, February 13, 2022

Your Sunday Morning Jet Noise

Ice ops, Antarctica, with a Boeing 767:

Saturday, February 12, 2022

Caturday

Winter cat.

Friday, February 11, 2022

This Crisis Is Being Brought to You By the Letters "D", "J", and "T",

Iran could make enough material for nuclear bomb in “weeks” if the regime decides it wants one, top U.S. officials told senators today, showcasing just how much its breakout timeline has shrunk since the Trump administration withdrew from a key agreement four years ago.

The assessment, briefed to lawmakers in a classified setting Wednesday, is slightly more rosy than shorter breakout periods — such as three to four weeks — cited by other analysts and senators. But it still adds a sense of urgency to ongoing negotiations in Austria to bring Washington and Tehran back into an agreement resembling the abandoned 2015 Iran nuclear deal
.

There was a deal in place to prevent this. But the Putz of Plam Beach tore it up, because he was convinced that he alone could get a better deal.

Which he failed to do.

And now the Iranians are on the cusp of becoming a nuclear power.

Heckuvajob, Donnie.

New Book Acquisition and The Future Arrives, Sort of


There was a mention of it on Ten Bear's blog. When I looked into the writeup about the book, it looked interesting. So I ordered it.

-------------------------------

Gun Jesus looks at what may be the first portable Gauss rifle.



It's not terribly practical as of yet. For muzzle energy, it's probably around a Crosman .22 pellet gun. But you know that this thing will be refined and something like it will be usable.

And, as of yet, they aren't "guns". So if you had the technical ability, you could design and make one.

Because It's Friday

AT&SF 3751:

Thursday, February 10, 2022

Shatting These Down, Here




EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE


I've had some sort of bug for the last two days. It's not the TrumpFlu. There's lots of news that I've been ignoring, including the Supremes' conniving at the Trump party's continuing efforts to ensure that their base has an outsized representation in elections. The entertaining dustup between the last few Republicans and the Trumpists for control of their once great party, which has largely become a cult of personality.

And then there is the ongoing efforts by the snowflakes in the Trump party to protect fragile white people from the historical record, including book burnings. Again, you can go read about that elsewhere, for now.

I'll be back.

Tuesday, February 8, 2022

Is Mitch Beginning to Find His Spine?

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell is criticizing the Republican National Committee for censuring two House GOP lawmakers investigating the “violent insurrection” on Jan. 6, 2021, saying it’s not the party’s job to police the views of lawmakers.

It's pretty clear that Moscow Mitch regards Cadet Bone Spurs's fixation on the 2020 election and the labelling of the Insurrection as "legitimate political discourse" to be impediments with regard to the mid-term elections.

I'll bet Kevin McCarthey is in hiding, for he has the fortitude of a jellyfish.

Pasting These Down, Here





This one is jumping the queue:

Monday, February 7, 2022

Those Handy Bone Spurs

PALM BEACH (The Borowitz Report)—Donald J. Trump has produced a letter from his podiatrist to avoid serving with the Russian forces massing on the border of Ukraine.

Although Trump has not yet been drafted into the Russian Army, he has been “living in terror” of receiving a draft notice from Vladimir Putin, a source close to the former President said

Heh. Heh. Heh.

Go read the whole thing.

That's the Thing With Reshuffling the Government



I had not heard of this guy until the NY Times posted a bit of his. I've been enjoying it hugely, more in a bit of shadenfreude that another country can choose a head of govenment who is as fuckiing incompetent and as openly stupidly arrogant as the Baboon of Mar-a-Lago, the only idiot to lose money running a casino.

It's Called "Damning Him With Faint Praise".

Boris Johnson is “not a complete clown”, his new communications director has said, as he revealed that the prime minister initiated a defiant rendition of Gloria Gaynor’s I Will Survive when the pair met last week.

He doesn't answer the charge that Boris never passes up the opportunity to tell a lie, but that's the Brits' problem.

Ukraine Knows the Value of Russian Guarantees

In 1994, Ukraine, along with other former Soviet states, had a large number of nuclear weapons on its soil. The Ukranians gave hem all up, in exchange for security guarantes from Russia, the United States and the United Kingdom. Those contries pledged to respect the independence and sovereignity of Ukraine and to not use force or economic pressure against Ukraine.

We now see that Russia's pledges are worthless. They have been since 2014, when Russia invaded the Crimean Peninsula and sent its "little green men" into eastern Ukraine. Putin has tried to say that Russian guarantees were only operative if Ukraine was a prostrate nation that kowtowed to Holy Mother Russia on an hourly basis. Winston Churchill's old line about the Hun now applies to Russia.

Sunday, February 6, 2022

Still a Few Republicans Drawing Oxygen

Mike Pence’s former chief of staff Marc Short joined several senior Republicans in rallying to defend the former vice-president on Sunday in his escalating feud with Donald Trump over the legitimacy of the 2020 presidential election.
...
“Unfortunately the president had many bad advisers, who were basically snake oil salesmen giving him really random and novel ideas as to what the vice-president could do. But our office researched that and recognized that was never an option.”

Short also attacked the Republican party’s position – crystalized this week in a widely derided censure motion for Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger, the only two Republicans on the House committee investigating the insurrection, that the January 6 rioters were engaging in “legitimate political discourse”.

“From my front-row seat, I did not see a lot of legitimate political discourse,” said Short, who along with the vice-president had to be hustled to a place of safety as the mob rampaged through the building.

Chris Christie is another one who has jumped off the Trump Train, probably because Trump gave him Covid.
Unfortunately, the traitorous nutjobs are still out there, yammering away. Most of the rest of the politicians in the Trump party are cowering in fear of their Orange Overlord.

Your Sunday Morning Prop Noise

A buttload of DC-3s:

Saturday, February 5, 2022

When It Comes to Voter Fraud, It's Almost Always a Trumpist at Work

Trumpists in (wait for it) Florida have been comning seniors into changing their party identification.

Trumpists screeching about voter fraud are like kiddie-raping priests who sermonize on morality.

(H/T)

Bezos is Becoming Someone Who Can't Be Satirized.

Imaging having a penis-compensating-yacht that was so big that one would have to pay to dismantle and reassemble a bridge in order to move it down a river.

That's Bezos:

A giant, $500 million yacht reportedly being built for Amazon founder Jeff Bezos faces a delivery problem: It may require dismantling a beloved, historic bridge in Rotterdam that is blocking its passage to the sea.

Reports this week that the Dutch city had already agreed to take apart the recently renovated Koningshaven Bridge, known locally as De Hef, sparked anger. On Facebook, locals are proposing to pelt the yacht with rotten eggs when it passes through
.

Hopefully, this barge has room for a particular form of land conveyance:


The builders may have to come up with another plan, as the stink around this story is now global.

Spawn of Voldemort Fires Back

As I noted, here, the Party of Trump[1] has declared that the Insurrection of January 6, 2021 was "legitimate political discourse".

One of the few remaining Republicans fired back:

These are strange times when I find myself in agreement with a Cheney. I didn't think that she was exceptionally brave, not when she threw her own sister under the bus. But she's changed my mind about her. She's one of the few active Republicans left with a set of gonads. The rest have willingly been spayed and neutered by Coup-ssolini. ________________________
[1] There are few Republicans left. All of the rest, including every senator now serving in Congress, has signed on with transforming the Party of Lincoln into a cult of personality that worships Commandante Bone Spurs. With the exception of a few now-living politicians, all will be referred to herein, going forward, as "Trumpists".

Caturday

Priss, the flower pot cat.

Friday, February 4, 2022

A Brutal Takedown of Boris the Liar


There's a lot of entertaining English slang, like "pissups" for parties. "Eaton is a Hogwarts for wankers, where you get taught Latin and tax-avoidance"... besides dismantling Boris, Mr. Pie slaughters the British upper-crust: "Cannibals, self-serving parasites, tapeworms in tiaras".

It's thoroughly enjoyable.

"It's the Fault of the Cops That I Robbed That Bank Because They Weren't There to Stop Meeeee!

That is, basically, the twisted logic of Dolt 45:

Donald Trump has blamed Nancy Pelosi for the Capitol riots on January 6, repeating his unproven claim that she rejected his request for extra security.

The former president, who is in the midst of a House Committee probe over his role in the 2021 insurrection, said he tried to call in the National Guard prior to the Stop the Steal rally
.

There is no evidence that the Tool of Putin wanted to call in the National Guard. There is mounting evidence that as his insurrection progressed, all he did was watch it on television and soil his pants in glee. but hey, you can bet that as soon as The Russian Minion spoke that lie last night, all of the flying monkeys on the Right began repeating the lie.

Meanwhile, the Republican party has, one more, affirmed that they are a personality cult. They are also trying to recast the Insurrection as a normal and peaceful protest:

Republican Party officials on Friday voted to punish GOP Reps. Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger for their work on the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection and advanced a rule change that would prohibit candidates from participating in debates organized by the Commission on Presidential Debates.

GOP officials took a voice vote to approve censuring Cheney and Kinzinger at the Republican National Committee’s winter meeting in Salt Lake City. On Thursday, members of an RNC subcommittee decided to advance the censure resolution against the pair instead of calling for their expulsion from the party.

The censure resolution accuses Kinzinger and Cheney of “participating in a Democrat-led persecution of ordinary citizens engaged in legitimate political discourse” — a striking description of the violent attack on the Capitol by supporters of then-President Donald Trump
.

Gee. There has been no shortage of Trumpanzees who have called for smashing the BLM protess with overwhelming force. The Master of Mar-a-Lago wanted to send in paratroopers to shoot them. But their own violent insurrection, which was aimed at overturning the election, was a peaceful protest in the eyes of the GOP.

So are we to assume that it would have met with Republican approval if the Capitol Police had broken out some M134s and hosed down the crowd as they ascended the steps of the Capitol?[1] Because that's what they are essentially arguing, that the Trumpist goons should have been served a whiff of grape.

Good to know.
________________________
[1] For the sake of argument, as the Capitol Hill cops didn't have gatling guns.

Because It's Friday

German steam:

Thursday, February 3, 2022

What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

DHS, more specifically, the goons at CPB and the Border Patrol[1] are developing robotic dogs for use on the border.

Right. Developing robotic dogs to hunt people. I am sure that will end well.

Have those idiots ever bothered to pick up a SF novel? Or seen some SF movies that touch on this subject?
_____________________
[1] AKA the "Constitution-free cops".

Dodging These Down, Here





Wednesday, February 2, 2022

The Death Toll From the Batshit Crazy Right


“Death rates are so high in the States — eye-wateringly high,” said Devi Sridhar, head of the global public health program at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland, who has supported loosening coronavirus rules in parts of Britain. “The United States is lagging.”

Some of the reasons for America’s difficulties are well known. Despite having one of the world’s most powerful arsenals of vaccines, the country has failed to vaccinate as many people as other large, wealthy nations. Crucially, vaccination rates in older people also lag behind certain European nations.

The United States has fallen even further behind in administering booster shots, leaving large numbers of vulnerable people with fading protection as Omicron sweeps across the country.
...
The only large European countries to exceed America’s Covid death rates this winter have been Russia, Ukraine, Poland, Greece and the Czech Republic, poorer nations where the best Covid treatments are relatively scarce
.


The article goes on to point out that, in the U.S., 12% of Americans over 65 are not vaccinated and 43% have not had a booster shot. In England, those percentages are 4% and 9%, respectively.

While there are a number of reasons for this to be so, one of the most glaringly obvious is that the Right has spent many decades posioning the well of common good. From Reagan and Norquist, through Gingrich and to almost every republican in Congress today, their constant mantra has been that gummint can do nothing. So when we get into a situation where a coordinated nationwide response is needed, conservatives just throw hissy fits, following the lead of Donnie Dorko and Fox News, or because they're consuming Russian propaganda on FB.

They spread their disinformation, their lies, and as a result, tens of thousands, if not more, Americans have died from a preventable disease. This pandemic has exposed the Right for what it is and has been for generations, a soulless, misanthropic, narcissistic ideology,[1] an ideology that turns its back from people in trouble and would stomp kittens if it could. If there was an elderly widow down the street who couldn't get out of her house because of a snowstorm, modern conservatives would say that it was her fault for not being able to hire a plowing company.

This clip was once comedic, but it embodies the modern Right:


The modern motto for conservatives is "Ubi Est Mea", essentially, "what's in it for me?" From vaccines to repairing roads and bridges, conservatives are of the "let them all die, it doesn't affect me" mindset. And G-d help them if they veer, even for a second, from the approved ideology of fealty to the Slob Father.
_______________________
[1] Their current push to protect the emotional fragility of white people has also exposed their foundations of a near-Nazi like belief in white supremacy.

Tuesday, February 1, 2022

Yes, It Was an Attempted Coup

Seth Meyers has the deets:



It's not bullshit. Yesterday, Trump admitted, in writing, that he was trying to overturn the election.


Trump is admitting to his attempt to rip up our democracy. Those who are aligning themselves with Trump, who support him, are tacitly admitting that they hate the American Experiment, that they are in favor of a dictatorship.

If you support Trump, that's who you are. Since Trump has admitted that he sought to overturn the election, every senator and representative who voted to challenge the election should be disqualified from ever running for public office again, pursuant to Section 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment.

(Insert Verb) These Down, Here





And a freebie: