Seen on the street in Kyiv.

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

“Speed is a poor substitute for accuracy.” -- Real, no-shit, fortune from a fortune cookie

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

"Colt .45s; putting bad guys in the ground since 1873." -- Unknown

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

"The Dildo of Karma rarely comes lubed." -- Unknown

"Eck!" -- George the Cat

* "TOFF" = Treasonous Orange Fat Fuck,
"FOFF" = Felonious Old Fat Fuck,
"COFF" = Convicted Old Felonious Fool,
A/K/A Commandante (or Cadet) Bone Spurs,
A/K/A El Caudillo de Mar-a-Lago, A/K/A the Asset,
A/K/A P01135809, A/K/A Dementia Donnie,
A/K/A Dolt-45, A/K/A Don Snoreleone

Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Pass the Popcorn, Please

Turns out that Jimmy O'Keefe is just another right-wing grifter. Allegedly.

Right-wing media group Project Veritas is suing its founder James O’Keefe, accusing him of bullying employees, racking up massive personal bills on company accounts, and using Project Veritas resources to start a new, rival media shop.

Hate Doesn't Always Carry the Day

High school theater kids in Ft. Wayne, IN wanted to put on a play, Marian or the True Tale of Robin Hood. This is what the play is about:

A gender-bending, patriarchy-smashing, hilarious new take on the classic tale, adapted for performance by teen actors for family audiences. Robin Hood is (and has always been) Maid Marian in disguise, and leads a motley group of Merry Men (few of whom are actually men) against the greedy Prince John. As the poor get poorer and the rich get richer, who will stand for the vulnerable if not Robin? What is the cost of revealing your true self in a time of trouble?

One parent protested, claiming that the play was immoral and against her religion. The kids pointed out that the school district claims to promote tolerance and says that they are against bullying, to no avail. The cowards in school administration and on the school board caved to Christian Karen.

The kids were undeterred. They obtained permission from the company holding the rights, found adults to act as the producer and to run fundraising. They rented a 1,500 seat theater, hired security (which ultimately had nothing to do), packed the house and they put on the show.

For one night, hatred and bigotry did not prevail in Indiana.

Heh.



Well, Kevin, that's what happens when you make a deal for power with a bunch of spoiled snowflakes who have absolutely zero idea of what adulting is all about. It's beginning to look like Randy won't have to eat his MAGA hat.

Meanwhile, it's a pretty good sign that, with Private Beach Boy entering the race, it's a better and better bet that this election will be a replay of the last one.

Blatant Russian Hypocrisy

The Russians are crying that the Ukraines are carrying out terrorist acts by sending a few drones against Moscow while, at the same time, the Russians have been pummelling Kyiv with drones.

This is the most blatant case of wartime hypocrisy since the Germans said that bombing their cities during the war was terrorism (after the Luftwaffe bombed Guernica, Warsaw, Rotterdam, London [in two wars], etc., etc.).

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Ignoring These Down, Here

We'll start out, today, with the most non-self-aware person in the known universe.





Apple Steals From the Internet

This commercial is out in frequent airplay (albeit usually a shorter version):



If it looks vaguely familiar, it should:



Originality is hard to come by when it comes to advertising. Nice try, Apple.

Music for the Day






Bad Situations Make for Bad Laws

First, you should go read this piece on Lawfare about the need for domestic terrorism legislation.

I am against that. First off, I believe that there are enough ways to convict people who are committing crimes in furtherance of political goals.

Second, looking at this issue through the lens of both the January 6th Trumpist Coup Attempt and far-right terrorism yields a distorted result. Remember that, when people were protesting the Wars of the Chimperor, that the Department of Defense labelled the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), a Quaker peace group, as a terrorist group. The long track record of police surveillance and government spying has shown that the security services of this country, from the local cops up through the Feds, have prioritized keeping tabs on antiwar groups while turning a near blind eye to the far-right. It was to the point that the last president regarded groups like the Oath Keepers, the Proud Boys and various neo-Nazis both as very fine people and as his base, while asking if it was possible to shoot protesters in the legs.

Anyone who doesn't believe that a politician like Trump, Abbott or DeSantis wouldn't weaponize the ability to designate groups as domestic terrorist organizations as a tool to crush opponents hasn't been paying attention. The idea of having domestic terrorism legislation is a horrible one.

A New Badge of Honor

Russia’s Interior Ministry on Monday issued an arrest warrant for U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham following his comments related to the fighting in Ukraine.

In an edited video of his meeting on Friday with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy that was released by Zelenskyy’s office, Graham, a Republican from South Carolina, noted that “the Russians are dying” and described the U.S. military assistance to the country as “the best money we’ve ever spent.”

While Graham appeared to have made the remarks in different parts of the conversation, the short video by Ukraine’s presidential office put them next to each other, causing outrage in Russia.
...
Graham commented on Twitter, saying that “to know that my commitment to Ukraine has drawn the ire of Putin’s regime brings me immense joy.”

“I will continue to stand with and for Ukraine’s freedom until every Russian soldier is expelled from Ukrainian territory,” he tweeted. “I will wear the arrest warrant issued by Putin’s corrupt and immoral government as a Badge of Honor.

Here are five words you will rarely read on this blog: I agree with Lindsey Graham.

I don't know how that plays with his Orange Master's stated indifference to Russia's vast compendium of war crimes in this war, but that's a matter for their party.

Memorial Day

Let's open with the Andy Rooney bit that I've used for years:



There will continue to be new people to remember on future Memorial Days. America may be at relative peace for the first time in decades, but it will not last. Sooner or later, our military will be called upon to defend our nation or those of our allies, or to defend our national interests. Even without another war, people will continue to pass from service-connected injuries.

And families will continue to mourn.

Monday, May 29, 2023

Did Ukraine Neuter Russia's Tactical Nuclear Threat?

It has now been proven that Russian hypersonic/ballistic missiles can be intercepted by Western air defenses. The much-ballyhooed "undetectable, unstoppable missiles," as the Russians claimed, have proven to be both detectable and stoppable. Since they are the same weapons that carry some of Russia's "tactical" nukes, they have cause for concern. The Russians are searching for scapegoats, much as they did when Stalin was their dictator.

It's how war evolves. For instance, there's not a lot of coverage anymore of HIMARS attacks, which suggests to me that the Russians are able to jam or degrade the missiles' guidance systems.

Tomorrow is Memorial Day. Not Today.

This is a dead horse that I have been whipping for the last fifteen years.

The lesson is that greed will debase everything. There is far, far more coverage of people traveling for an extended weekend and what's on sale than there is about the men and women who lost their lives in the service of this country. Everyone who runs a "Memorial Day sale" has, in my hopes, guaranteed themselves a nice hot spot in Hell.

Sunday, May 28, 2023

Your Sunday Morning Prop Noise

"Just Jane", an Avro Lancaster bomber, seems to be near the end of her restoration

Saturday, May 27, 2023

Caturday

A cat who prefers to be anonymous.

Friday, May 26, 2023

Proof, Yet Again, That There is No Appreciable Difference Between the American Christian Taliban and Putin's Regime

Whenever the Christian Taliban come up with some batshittery in their culture war, the Russians seem to follow suit.

Deputies in Russia’s State Duma have drafted a bill that would completely ban gender affirming surgeries, according to the newspaper Vedomosti. The bill has not yet been submitted for consideration, but journalists from the outlet have seen its text.

The proposed legislation would reportedly prohibit Russians from performing surgical procedures for the purpose of gender transitions as well as from changing their gender markers and names in official documents
.

This is why the far-right has been backing Putin and why DeSantis has been following along. Putin has cast himself as their guy, the one who agrees with crushing freedom in the name of religious rule, and the Talibanistas here just eat that shit up.

No wonder they are so against critical thinking.

Because It's Friday

Take a look at the close-up of the driving wheels. You'll see that the middle one is a "blind" wheel.

Thursday, May 25, 2023

Jittering These Down, Here






Another Line of Government Theft is Now Illegal

Governments can not sell your property to satisfy a tax bill and then keep the excess money.

so say the Supremes, 9-0.


Shame on the lower courts for siding with the thieves of a homeowner's equity.

Goombye, Stewie (and Other Convicted Assholes)

The founder of the Oath Keepers extremist group was sentenced Thursday to 18 years in prison for orchestrating a weekslong plot that culminated in his followers attacking the U.S. Capitol in a bid to keep President Joe Biden out of the White House after the 2020 election.

Stewart Rhodes is the first person charged in the Jan. 6, 2021, attack to be sentenced for seditious conspiracy, and his sentence is the longest that has been handed down so far in the hundreds of Capitol riot cases.
...
Prosecutors argued that a lengthy sentence is necessary to deter future political violence. Assistant U.S. Attorney Kathryn Rakoczy pointed to interviews and speeches Rhodes has given from jail repeating the lie 2020 election was stolen and saying it would be again in 2024. In remarks just days ago, Rhodes called for “regime change,” the prosecutor said.

Stewie's lawyer asked that he be sentenced to time served. The judge wasn't having any of that. So, see ya in fifteen years or so, bucko.

Also, the clown who sat in Speaker Pelosi's office and propped his foot up on a desk got four years, plus. A guy who assaulted a cop at Trump's coup attempt got five years. The desk clown was trying to make money from his crimes.

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Even Republicans Agree That Ken Paxton is a Power-Mad Crook

A Republican-led investigation on Wednesday accused Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton of committing multiple crimes in office — including felonies — during an extraordinary public airing of scandal and alleged lawbreaking that plunged one of the GOP’s conservative stars into new political and legal risk.

For more than three hours, investigators presented findings alleging Paxton sought to hide an affair, misused his office to help a donor, skirted protocols “grossly outside” norms and built a culture of fear and retaliation in his office. Investigators told the GOP-led House General Investigating Committee that there was evidence that Paxton repeatedly broke the law over the years, including by misusing official information, abusing his official capacity and retaliation
.

Just another right-wing thug, like his Orange God.

Speaking of the Indicted Jefe of Mar-a-Lago, he and his cronies had the FBI and the DoJ investigating the Clinton Foundation for four years and found...(wait for it)...nothing. No convictions, no charges, just a four-year fruitless jerking off of Federal investigators, a thorough abuse of power by the TOFF, the Evil Keebler Elf and Butt-Monkey Barr.

(Yeah I know. Cue the QAnon conspiracy loons in 3....2...1.....)

Tuesday, May 23, 2023

Boom?

About 60,000 pounds of a chemical used as both a fertilizer and an explosive is missing after likely disappearing during a rail trip from Wyoming to California last month, according to federal records.

A rail car carrying ammonium nitrate left a plant operated by explosives manufacturer Dyno Nobel in Cheyenne, Wyoming, on April 12, according to an incident report filed May 10 by a representative of the company with the National Response Center.

Thirty tons of the stuff. Half-a-ton of urean nitrate fertizer (similar stuff) was used to try and bring down the Word Trade Center in 1993. McVeigh used about 2.4 tons of ammonium nitrate to blow up the OKC Federal Building in 1995.

One can only hope that some inattentive worker didn't lock a valve shut on the hopper car and it all dribbled out along the tracks. Otherwise, we may be in for some interesting times.

Defanging These Down, Here

Yes, I'm running out of verbs. Sue me.





Maybe the Walls Are Closing in on Teflon Don

But don't count on it.

Federal prosecutors have evidence Donald Trump was put on notice that he could not retain any classified documents after he was subpoenaed for their return last year, as they examine whether the subsequent failure to fully comply with the subpoena was a deliberate act of obstruction by the former president.

The previously unreported warning conveyed to Trump by his lawyer Evan Corcoran could be significant in the criminal investigation surrounding Trump’s handling of classified materials given it shows he knew about his subpoena obligations.
...
In particular, prosecutors have fixated on Trump’s valet Walt Nauta, after he told the justice department that Trump told him to move boxes out of the storage room before and after the subpoena. The activity was captured on subpoenaed surveillance footage, though there were gaps in the tapes.

The warning was one of several key moments that Corcoran preserved in roughly 50 pages of dictated notes described to the Guardian over several weeks by three people with knowledge of their contents, which prosecutors have viewed in recent months as central to the criminal investigation
.

This investigation has the potention to be just eyewash, just like the Durham investigation, if no charges are brought and if no convictions are obtained. The only thing that is going to matter to the TOFF is whether or not he sees the inside of a prison cell. Otherwise, trials will be an opportunity for fundraising, with his legal fees covered by the rubes who send in donations and with the only people who go to jail are inconsequential underlings. And, to the Asset, everybody else is an inconsequential underling.

DeSantis Hired Criminals to be Cops

Former cops accused of murder, kidnapping, sexual assault and extortion, all hired by Florida under SeSantis's "Hire the Goons" program.

DeSantis is turning Florida into a Christian fascist hellhole.

Sunday, May 21, 2023

If You Are an Employee of the State of Florida, DeSantis Has Been Raiding Your Pension Fund to Benefit His Donors

Despite a federal anti-corruption rule designed to prevent donors from receiving pension investments, private equity executives have donated millions to political groups supporting DeSantis, all while the governor oversaw the transfer of more than $1 billion of Florida public employees’ retirement dollars into these donors’ high-fee, high-risk “alternative investments.”

A Lever review found that had the state pension fund instead been invested in a simple, low-cost index fund, compared to its present mix of holdings, teachers, police officers, and other state employees would have about $10 billion more in their retirement funds.

It's a cute little scheme. DeSantis steered pension funds to Wall Street fund managers who run high-fee investments. Those fund managers then made donations to the Republican Governors' Association which, in turn, donates to Desantis's campaign fund.

DeSantis gets his campaign money, his donors make a shitload of money and the only people who get screwed are the state employees.

What the Hell Are These Things?

Dug out of the ground. They've probably been there since the late '40s.


Cruelty is Not a By-Product, It's the Point; Christian Taliban Ed.

Deborah and her husband, Lee, learned in late November that their baby had Potter syndrome, a rare and lethal condition that plunged them into an unsettled legal landscape.

The state’s ban on abortion after 15 weeks of gestation has an exception for fatal fetal abnormalities. But as long as their baby’s heart kept beating, the Dorberts say, doctors would not honor their request to terminate the pregnancy. The doctors would not say how they reached their decision, but the new law carries severe penalties, including prison time, for medical practitioners who run afoul of it. The hospital system declined to discuss the case.

Baby Milo was born without kidneys and with underdeveloped lungs. This was known three months ahead of time. He had no chance, his life expectancy was between a half-hour and two hours. He lived for 99 minutes, gasping for air the entire time. That suffering was inflicted on Milo and his family by the good G_d-fearing Republicans of Florida, led by their diminuitive fascist governor.

Let's be honest about this: The so-called exceptions in the various laws prohibiting abortions are there for public relations only. In practice, they are meaningless and those pushing those laws know that. Oh, they say differently, they pretend that they are so concerned about the mothers and their families, but they are lying.

The "exceptions" are meaningless because no doctor is going to risk his or her license, let alone a felony conviction, by trying to apply them. No hospital is going to let a doctor apply one of the exceptions. They are not going to risk running afoul of some zealous prosecutor, who is seeking to make a name for himself by prosecuting such a case. They are not going to take the chance of such a prosecutor trying to sway a jury and, even if they were so inclined, they're not willing to risk the legal costs from doing so. Sure, they may risk some bad publicity from making a mother get sick to the point of death or forcing her to bring a doomed baby to term or making an incest or rape victim carry her victimizer's kid, but that'll likely blow over.

Lakeland Regional Health in Florida can console itself that, while they forced a family to bring a child into this world who had no chance of living, they didn't get prosecuted by DeSantis's Fetal Protection Corps. The hospital can pat itself on the back for putting self-protection ahead of everything else.

And you can bet the farm that there is not a single member of the Christian Taliban who feels bad for that family. On the contrary, they are drinking carbonated grape juice and congratulating themselves for "mission accomplished".

Your Sunday Morning Turboprop Noise

Operations at Lukla Airport in Nepal:



That airport is at 9,334' MSL, has a runway length of 1,729' and slopes at 11.7%. It is VFR-only. At a certain point, aborting a landing or a takeoff is not optional. It may be the highest airport in the world with airline service.

Saturday, May 20, 2023

If We're Going to Claw Back Stuff to Cut the Deficit

Let's claw back Trump's tax cuts. Trump had no problem with raising the debt ceiling to cover the deficits run up by his tax cuts.

We should never forget that this country was on the road to slash the deficit before Dubya cut taxes and then got into two wars at the same time.

That's the GOP's plan: Cut taxes for the rich, stomp harder on the poor and the workers.. Then cover that up with bullshit culture wars.

In the meantime, the GOP is beginning to tromp down the road of appeasing Putin.

And let's not forget: Brazil and India are not exactly our friends.

Caturday

Guest critter.

Friday, May 19, 2023

Because It's Friday

On the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe!



Her class is reportedly the largest 4-8-4 locomotives made for American railroads. Her top operational speed was 110mph.

Of Course the Supreme Court Did That

As Randall D. Eliason has pointed out, the Supreme Court has spent more than twenty years limiting the reach of corruption laws to the point that it takes an cash-for-favors transaction to convict a public official of corruption. So if a rich guy gives gifts, money or provides free trips and vacations to a public official without a direct nexus to the official's job, that is OK in the eyes of the Supreme Court.

Well, now we know why they did that. The justices apparently wanted it to be legal for them to elbow their way to the feeding trough. Anyone who thinks that Harlan Crow would be doing all those favors to Clarence Thomas if Thomas wasn't on the Supreme Court has to be smoking both crack and meth. Anyone who truly believes that Neil Gorsuch suddenly had fantastic luck in finding a buyer for his property just days after he was confirmed to the Court is probably sneaking access to the Internet from the computer at the nurse's station in the psych ward. And do you really think that the wives of Clarenece Thomas and John Roberts would have been raking in so much cash if their husbands were judges in the Idaho district court?

The Supreme Court most assuredly does not like that we are all talking about how corrupt they are. But those fuckers did it to themselves.

Thursday, May 18, 2023

Wednesday, May 17, 2023

Tuberville Goes Full Fascist, Demands End to Democracy if People Don't Go to Jail for Imaginary Crimes

That is where he's at. He thinks people should go to jail for the Trump/Russia investigation (the special counsel tried, won no convictions) and for the fictitious voter fraud that never happened in the first place.



But that's Republicans for you. They've been sold a massive stack of lies by the TOFF and the Right Wing Noise Machine and they have swallowed all of them.

Tuesday, May 16, 2023

Crowning These Down, Here







As It Turns Out, There Was Not Much There, There; FBI Ed.

A special prosecutor found that the FBI rushed into its investigation of ties between Russia and Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign and relied too much on raw and unconfirmed intelligence as he concluded a four-year probe that fell far short of the former president’s prediction that the “crime of the century” would be uncovered.

The report Monday from special counsel John Durham represents the long-awaited culmination of an investigation that Trump and allies had claimed would expose massive wrongdoing by law enforcement and intelligence officials. Instead, Durham’s investigation delivered underwhelming results, with prosecutors securing a guilty plea from a little-known FBI employee but losing the only two criminal cases they took to trial.

Six million dollars to find out that the FBI acted a little too hastily? That seems a bit much. And the point that the FBI had "confirmation bias".. that's news? Law enforcement lives there. Men are being released from prison, time after time, because the cops had target fixation with regard to whom they think is the perpetrator.

Also note that the TOFF's favorite prosecutor managed to secure zero convictions at trial (and one plea deal) for what the Asset called "the crime of the century". That compares to the trials of the January 6th defendants from his "beautifil and perfect rally," which have, so far, been convicted at a 100% rate.

Monday, May 15, 2023

One Would Think That in Russia, Such Conduct Would Merit a Painful Execution

The Russians have been known to slowly execute traitors, including allegedly feeding them into a furnace, alive, and feet-first.

But if the traitor is useful to the Kremlin, all sorts of fuckery will be overlooked. As long as it is convenient to do so.

In an apparent escalation of Yevgeny Prigozhin's public feud with Vladimir Putin over his for-hire army, the leader of the Wagner mercenary group offered to sell out the locations of Russian troops to Ukrainian officials in exchange for their mercy on the battlefield, according to leaked intelligence documents.
...
In exchange for Ukrainians pulling back from the front lines of battle in Bakhmut, where Wagner mercenaries have faced heavy losses that Prigozhin blames on Putin's lack of support and supplies, Prigozhin would reveal the locations of Russian troops and stand by as Ukraine attacked.

The Ukrainians did't take him up on his offer, likely because they either didn't trust him or they feared that it was a trap. That it was a trap may be suggested by the point that Prigozhin's still breathing.

Because Pointy Hoods Are So 20th Century

Nazi cowards/filth on our streets.



It's probably a safe bet that some of those cowards are cops. It's a known problem.

Edited to add:



Edited to add:

Even more of Joe Flood's heckling, including the instant classic about Custer:

Sunday, May 14, 2023

Are EV's Essentially Murder Machines?

If you are driving a gas-powered sedan and your car gets hit by an EV, you are likely to get killed. Because of physics -- EVs are very heavy. A Ford Mustang EV is over a half-ton heavier than a gas-powered one. The EV SUVs are essentially powered battering rams.

Grifting the Right

A group of conservative operatives using sophisticated robocalls raised millions of dollars from donors using pro-police and pro-veteran messages. But instead of using the money to promote issues and candidates, an analysis by The New York Times shows, nearly all the money went to pay the firms making the calls and the operatives themselves, highlighting a flaw in the regulation of political nonprofits.

They raised $89 million in the 2022 election cycle, mostly in small donations. Most of that went for fundraising costs. A few million went to what appeared to be shell companies owned by the organizers. Just under $827,000 went to support political causes and candidates.

In other words, they skimmed over 99% of the donated money by phony charities to support first responders, almost always targeting conservative voters.

If you get a call from someone who says that they are working for a fund that supports cops, firefightsers, or veterans hang up. It's a fucking scam.

Your Sunday Morning Prop Noise

The Grumman TBM "Avenger":



Grumman first built them, that airplane was the "TBF". "TBM" signifies that it was the first torpedo bomber built by General Motors. Legend is that Grumman delivered a TBF to GM that was held together with sheet-metal screws to facilitate studying the airplane. (The Navy wanted Grumman to build F6F Hellcats, which were designed to be Zero-killers.)

The TBF was designed to replace the TBD "Devastator". Avengers could be found in military serive into the 1960s and in commercial service as water-bombers into the 2010s.

Saturday, May 13, 2023

Caturday

Chip, of course.

Friday, May 12, 2023

Kids Can Buy Guns, Now?

A federal judge in Virginia has ruled that a law banning licensed federal firearms dealers from selling handguns to young adults under 21 violates the Second Amendment and is unconstitutional.

The ruling Wednesday by U.S. District Court Judge Robert Payne in Richmond, if not overturned, would allow dealers to sell handguns to 18- to 20-year-olds.

In his 71-page ruling, Payne wrote that many of the rights and responsibilities of citizenship are granted at the age of 18, including the right to vote, enlist in the military without parental permission and serve on a federal jury
.

The minimum age of 21 to buy a handgun was one of the compromises in the 1968 Gun Control Act. What those pushing the bill wanted to do was outright ban the sale of handguns. Before then, the rule in most states was "old enough to pay for it, old enough to buy it." Boys, in particular, mowed lawns and shovelled snow to earn money to buy a .22 rifle or a .410 shotgun. They'd go to the local hardware store, to Sears (or Monkey Wards) or mail a money order to Herters. It was between the kid and the parents.

The argument of Bloomberg's group about research into homicide rates may be true, but it is also irrelevant. The Supremes have pretty much elevated 2A rights to the strict scrutiny test, which means that unless there is a compelling argument as to why a restriction is necessary, the restriction fails.

The focus of the Supremes on what restrictions were present when firearms were used to shoot game, British soldiers and random Indians is just weird. I expect that the requirements to have serial numbers and prohibitions against felons possessing guns will eventually fall, unless they can twist themselves into pretzels to justify the rules.

And before you argue in the comments that the colonial argument would only permit muzzleloading flintlocks, go read this.

Cry Me a River; PharmaBro Ed.

The pharmaceutical company behind Martin Shkreli's infamous 4,000 percent price hike—now known as Vyera Pharmaceuticals—filed for bankruptcy this week and plans to sell its assets to pay off millions in debts.

In court documents filed Wednesday, Vyera's chief restructuring officer, Lawrence Perkins, largely blamed Shkreli for dooming the company and its affiliates.

Everyone who works/worked for Vyera/Turing Pharmaceuticals should only look forward to a lifetime of litigation and underemployment, plus contracting a loathsome disease from which they die soon, painfully, and often. Pirates like Shkreli and Perkins are the sort of capitalists that make communism seem appealing.

Because It's Friday

Steel on steel can suck, at times.

Thursday, May 11, 2023

Wednesday, May 10, 2023

Felonious George (or Anthony, or Kitara)

A 13-count indictment was unsealed today in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York charging George Anthony Devolder Santos, better known as “George Santos,” a United States Congressman representing the Third District of New York, with seven counts of wire fraud, three counts of money laundering, one count of theft of public funds, and two counts of making materially false statements to the House of Representatives.

Some of it is basic stupidity, such as unemployment fraud. Then there is the usual campaign fraud (paying for personal shit from campaign donations) charges for idiots such as him.

New York state charges are still a possibility.

I doubt if he'd do twenty years, given that he's a first-time, nonviolent offender. On the other hand, the judge might take a dim view of corrupt politicians and opt to toss him away for a goodly spell.

UPDATE: He was released on $500,000 bail. No word as to who bailed him out.

Tuesday, May 9, 2023

His Nose Keeps Growing As the Feds Close In

U.S. Rep. George Santos, who faced outrage and mockery over a litany of fabrications about his heritage, education and professional pedigree, has been charged with federal criminal offenses, two people familiar with the matter told The Associated Press.

Seems that Randy Rainbow called it.

Yet Another Loss for the TOFF

A jury found Donald Trump liable Tuesday for sexually abusing advice columnist E. Jean Carroll in 1996, awarding her $5 million in a judgment that could haunt the former president as he campaigns to regain the White House.

The verdict adds to Trump’s legal woes and offers vindication to Carroll, whose allegations had been mocked and dismissed by Trump for years. She nodded as the verdict was announced in a federal courtroom in New York City just a few hours after deliberations had begun She hugged supporters and smiled through tears.

Jurors also found Trump liable for defaming Carroll after she made her allegations public. Trump chose not to attend the civil trial and was absent when the verdict was read.

I've implied before that my belief is that his lawyer's trial strategy was dictated by the TOFF. Hammering the living shit out of an accuser in a sexual misconduct/rape trial doesn't play well these days.

The jury was out for about three hours. That suggests to me that it wasn't even a close matter in their eyes.

On to Georgia.

Shining These Down, Here




Murrica in 2023

I went to a few big-box stores yesterday, looking for a plumbing part that was not available in the local hardware store.[1] When I walked in, I made note of the emergency exits and where the entrances to the back-of-the-store stockrooms were. My dad had always told me to do that, but back in his day, the concern was emergency egress in the event of a fire.

Not any more. The concern is whether or not some conspiracy-fueled incel with a grudge against the world or some lunatic hoping to start a race war[2] might shoot up the place, using the rifle that seems to be the favorite tool of those murderous nutjobs.

I suppose that I should not worry as much as people in other states. My state has had a "assault rifle" ban place for several years, along with a ban on high-capacity magazines. None of that is foolproof, of course, but as for the stupid young mostly-male, mostly-white things who get it into their heads to buy a rifle and go out and commit mass murder, it slows them down quite a bit.

I have a carry permit. I was not carrying a gun, because I had also been to places where I couldn't. I don't like locking my gun in my car; there is always a chance that somebody might spot me, retrieving it, or putting away, which could lead to a police interaction that I would rather not have.

I don't know what the answer is. Banning AR-15-type rifles outright will require buying them all back (incluing the magazines), which will probably cost north of fifty billion dollars.[3] Banning the sale of new ones does nothing for the tens of millions of such rifles already out there. Treating them like machine guns will require a vast expansion of the BATF, for which there is probably no appetite for in Congress.

But if this nation keeps going with multiple mass-shootings every week, usually with AR-15s, something is going to change. Even in Texas.[4]
_________________
[1] Ended up buying it from Lord Bezos's company.
[2] The news said this morning that "the shooter's motives were unclear." The fucker was adorned with Nazi tattoos, how much clearer does it have to be?
[3] The Fifth Amendment, you know.
[4] It's interesting that the states that seem to be the most dedicated to protecting the right to buy an AR-15 are also the states which are most dedicated to controlling women's reproductive systems. So while it's not OK in those states to have an abortion, it's OK to buy a tool that allows one to kill a shitload of kids at one go? But someone else can have at that topic, if they feel up to it.

Murrican Nutjobs With Guns

A Louisiana man has been charged with aggravated assault and battery after shooting at children who had been playing hide and seek outside his home, striking a 14-year-old girl, officials said.

The girl suffered a gunshot wound to the back of the head early Sunday, and was taken to a hospital with injuries that were not considered life-threatening, the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office said in a statement posted on social media Monday.
...
David Doyle, 58, told detectives that he got his gun when he saw shadows outside his home and shot at people he saw running away, unknowingly hitting the girl, officials said.

Let's be clear about this, shall we? Shooting people in the back who are running away (and who are not covering their escape with gunfire) is never, ever, ever OK. It's almost never OK for cops to do it. It's not OK for non-LEO citizens to do it.

This modern trend of shooting people who make the perpretrator vaguely uncomfortable has to be stopped. Really, about the only way to do that is to send them away for very long confinements. With lots of publicity.

If this asswipe is found guilty, the judge should stack the sentences.

Monday, May 8, 2023

The Google Blogger Spam Filter Has Gotten Weird

I do check it every day or so. And I thought it was a little wonky.

But today, it has gotten weird. There are nine comments in it, dating from 2010 to 2020. Four of them are mine. Two are from a dead guy. All but one are one-word comments, such as "nice" or "indeed" or "agreed".

Sunday, May 7, 2023

Wheelgunning with Mas

He makes a lot of good points.



I do like the new 3" Python with Wilson sights. I'd be very interested if Colt were to make them in .40 S&W, which might be pretty close to the old .41 Magnum police load. Intellectually, I'm not a big fan of moon-clipped revolvers, as that seems to go against one of the best points of a revolver (you don't need anything else other than catridges), but who knows. I might be able to get over it.

Your Sunday Morning Jet Noise

A bunch of low passes:

Saturday, May 6, 2023

Caturday

Coronation Day, or
I Would Have Preferred the Farcical Aquatic Ceremony

It's up to the Brits (and the Scots, Welsh and N. Irish), as well as the Commonwealth nations, as to whether or not they continue on with the World's Wealthiest Welfare Familytm.

But ever so slowly, it does seem that this view is beginning to take hold outside of the UK:

Friday, May 5, 2023

Because It's Friday

A "steam gala":



With no power assist, note how many turns of the steering wheel it takes to steer that steam roller.

Flight Recorders on Military Aircraft?

U.S. Army investigators have recovered flight recording devices from two helicopters that collided last week in Interior Alaska, killing three soldiers and injuring another.

The AH-64 Apache helicopters collided April 27 about 50 miles east of Healy while returning from training at an aerial gunnery range in the Donnelly Training Area southeast of Fairbanks.

Wouldn't those things be a security risk during a war? I would think that the Army wouldn't want an adversary getting their commie mitts on a flight recorder during a war. Even moreso if they have cockpit voice recorders.

Thursday, May 4, 2023

The TOFF Loses in Court, Again

A judge has dismissed former President Donald Trump's lawsuit against The New York Times. Trump sued the paper after it published a 2018 story on Trump family business dealings and Trump's "dubious tax schemes during the 1990s." Trump's lawsuit, filed in 2021, accused the paper and three of its reporters of conspiring with his niece, Mary Trump, to get his tax records through illegal means. He sought $100 million in damages.

"The crux of [Trump's] claim is that a reporter for The Times caused his niece, Mary Trump, to take 20-year-old tax and financial documents held by her lawyer and disclose them in violation of a 2001 settlement agreement," noted Justice Robert R. Reed of Manhattan's Supreme Court.
...
"Courts have long recognized that reporters are entitled to engage in legal and ordinary news-gathering activities without fear of tort liability — as these actions are at the very core of protected First Amendment activity," Reed wrote.

The judge ordered Trump to pay the legal fees of the three Times reporters he sued and the paper's legal fees
.

No doubt that he'll be on his failing Nazi Twitter platform to complain that the courts are being so, so unfair to him.

More From Thomas the Grifting Engine

In 2008, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas decided to send his teenage grandnephew to Hidden Lake Academy, a private boarding school in the foothills of northern Georgia. The boy, Mark Martin, was far from home. For the previous decade, he had lived with the justice and his wife in the suburbs of Washington, D.C. Thomas had taken legal custody of Martin when he was 6 years old and had recently told an interviewer he was “raising him as a son.”

Tuition at the boarding school ran more than $6,000 a month. But Thomas did not cover the bill. A bank statement for the school from July 2009, buried in unrelated court filings, shows the source of Martin’s tuition payment for that month: the company of billionaire real estate magnate Harlan Crow.

Up to four years at private school, all paid by Crow, to the tune of 150 large. Between the two, the Thomases made well over half-a-million a year. They should have been able to cover the kid's tuition. But why do that when some billionaire is going to do it "out of the goodness of his heart"?

In a pig's eye. But you know, as do I, that Thomas can grift away to his heart's content and nobody is going to do fuck-all about it. Ol' Harland could be dropping off briefcases of cash, each month, and nothing would ever be done.

Those fuckers on the court are American royalty. They are untouchable.

Teething These Down, Here