Incredibly powerful, must-watch moment.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) August 6, 2019
Oh, sure, we could go with something election related. Or we could follow in Wonkette’s footsteps & write about how Kentucky’s Attorney General brazenly lied about the grand jury’s investigation of Breonna Taylor’s killer cops (yes, we’re talking about murderous cops and not about people who kill cops) and about how the dishonest AG was counting on grand jury secrecy to keep his lies from being discovered even as he continued to break required silence on grand jury proceedings with no one to arrest him (since that would be the AG’s job, which would be him) and, finally, about how a new ruling on behalf of a grand jury member who wanted to be able to speak publicly about aspects of the proceedings which the AG had already (falsely) described without going to jail. That’s an important story, an Wonkette has a good write up of it, but it’s not the most important story of the day.
We will, of course, miss the work of James Randi, but while personally affecting, I feel the story lacks quite as much public impact as even the story about the release of the Taylor grand jury transcript’s release. The story about Giuliani’s bid to bed a Borat Betty is amusing if you’re in the right frame of mind, but that’s not important at all. There’s all sorts of election news, of course, but much of it is horse-race nonsense. The election is not won or lost based on polls conducted 2-3 weeks before election day.
No, there’s only one most important news story today:
Exactly what it says. I chose Snopes because they have additional information (as limited and vague as it may be, it’s hard to be more precise) with links to separate articles with the details of the aspect of voting, requesting an absentee ballot, or other issues that concerns you most.
Please, click this link and do everything you can to make sure you’re prepared.
As I said yesterday, journalists are acting shocked – SHOCKED – that Trump, his administration, and his campaign might have lied to them about the president’s COVID status. They are so shocked that today Kaitlan Collins on CNN suggested that a doctor who has no history of lying to the public might have given false information in an interview when the doctor said that the positive test came back 72 hours ago and treatment began 48 hours ago even though the public had only been notified a bit less than 36 hours before.
So there’s a metaphor with which I hope most people will be familiar: the Leopards Eating Faces Party. The basic idea is that a bunch of leopards, who are, naturally, in favor of jumping up to clamp their jaws on human faces and thrash around until they rip a fair bit of human flesh free for eating, form a political party. The leopards also want power and lots of it. They wander around showing off their sleek pelts and seductively asking people, “Wouldn’t you actually enjoy it if I ate the face of that person over there that you hate? Well, I could do that if only there were no animal catchers to stop me. Unfortunately, this world has animal catchers, so you’ll have to vote me and my fellow leopards into power. Then we can do away with all our opposition & go eat that person’s face for you.” Surprisingly enough, some people vote for the LEFP.
You have to wonder sometimes about these gun fondlers. There is yet another story, this one from a semi-rural location I and many Oregonians know well: Lincoln City. It’s a small place, not that attractive in its city center, but it has a gorgeous, peaceful lake separated from the beach by only feet and the ocean by only a few tens of yards. The Dee River from the overflow of this misnamed “Devil’s Lake” to the ocean itself is the shortest river (definition requires year-round flow, not temporary rivers that flow only during flood season) in the world.
Yet now there’s another reason to think of “short” and “Lincoln City” together. There’s not much to tell save for what’s in the headline, but if it’s worth anything, you can read about yet another dood shooting himself in the dick in honor of his right to self-defense.
PS. Of course he hadn’t bothered to do the paperwork for a gun permit, that would have impinged on his constitutional freedoms. So when he gets out of the hospital, he’s going to face multiple criminal charges for endangering others and weapons violations.
Many years ago, Bob Packwood represented Oregon in the US Senate despite a veritable career of sexual assault, often carried out in the US Capitol Building. Although the Oregonian, the largest newspaper in the state and one which likes to bill itself as the paper of record for Oregon, had the story, they declined to take it to press. IIRC, one reason for that decision was that they didn’t want to influence Packwood’s reelection bid by printing the story too close to November.
The Oregonian’s slogan at the time was, “If it matters to Oregonians, it’s in the Oregonian.” Naturally enough then, when the Washington Post printed the story of Packwood’s serial predations one immediately began to see bumper stickers around Portland stating, “If it matters to Oregonians, it’s in the Washington Post.”
This phenomenon isn’t unique to the Oregonian, however. There’s an old expression, “Don’t shit where you eat.” The message of the metaphor is that you don’t want to make a mess of the place where you live, because you’ll hurt yourself in the process. Though journalism writ broadly does like to hold powerful figures to account, it doesn’t like to do so if that’s going to make a mess of the places where journalists have to make a living.
As a result, it can sometimes be easier to get good, honest analysis of how fucked up your local situation might be when reading a news source based far away. The problem here is that the honest assessment and willingness to tell the truth even if it makes a local mess is combined with a lack of access to local facts. It’s simply harder to get all the details necessary for the analysis, even if it’s easier to do the analysis honestly once the facts are in place.
But every once in a while you’ll get good writing about your local situation in a foreign source that also managed to get access to all the most important facts, and when that happens it’s often the best reporting you can read.
Today, courtesy of Wonkette.com, I found my way to reporting in The Guardian on police violence in Los Angeles. The whole piece is worth reading, but the conclusion takes one’s breath away:
Lopez knew she wanted to get in engaged in local activism after watching George Floyd’s death. In June, she wrote to the mayor of Ontario, the southern California city where she lives, and outlined her own experiences with police over the years and the ways officers mistreat Black families like hers. She called on city leaders to stand up to systemic racism: “I tell you about us so that you are convinced that we matter.”
On 10 June, a police official responded to her email, thanking her for her words, but suggesting the George Floyd tragedy was unique and did not represent officers’ behavior.
The following day, police killed her father.
California god damn.
Remember that Newsweek editorial saying that the first Black woman on a national ticket wasn’t really a citizen?
Yeah, apparently Newsweek’s top management got a bunch of internal pushback from the people that actually produce the product without which they’d go immediately bankrupt: the writers. Under threat of not having anything to sell and therefore no money, which would, presumably, not be the happiest outcome for the shareholders, Newsweek brass decided it was time for a walkback so that they could defend their decision, admit that they maybesortaprobly wouldn’t make the same decision in the future, acknowledge that Harris is an actual American human being, and hold their heads high that they have been good and reasonable throughout this trying time:
Can you solve this mystery, which, according to NewAtlas.com has been baffling scientists?
Okay, I know it’s basically a press-release aggregator, but I still check in on ScienceDaily.com from time to time. Today, I found this and couldn’t stop WTFing.
A team of transatlantic scientists, using reanalyzed data from NASA’s Kepler space telescope, has discovered an Earth-size exoplanet orbiting in its star’s habitable zone, the area around a star where a rocky planet could support liquid water. [emphasis added]
Now I’m going all kooky with images of a scientist named Talos who is 12,000 miles tall with one foot in Noordwijk, Netherlands and the other in Greenbelt, Maryland.