Malaka Of The Week: John Fleming

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John Fleming is a Congressman from North Louisiana. He’s another dipshit right wing Doctor. I’m pleased to report that he’s an Ole Miss doc, not an LSU one. He’s said a lot of stupid shit over the years but something came out of his pie hole the other day that took the proverbial cake. And that is why John Fleming is malaka of the week.

Louisiana Gopers only make TPM when they say something ludicrous. Here’s how good ole Doc Fleming (I refuse to call him Doctor John for obvious reasons) made news:

“Make no mistake about it: this is a part of a grand plan for the Democrat Party to make this nation into a single-party state,” Fleming said while discussing Obama’s executive action on immigration on the Virginia-based radio program “The John Fredericks Show.”

Fleming warned that the action on immigration, combined with lax voter registration rules, would lead to massive numbers of undocumented immigrants casting votes for Democrats.

Undocumented immigrants are “very, very consistent Democrat voters” who “come from cultures that look to government for solutions,” he said.

“That Democrat Party knows this, and they know that if they can’t win elections using American citizens, this is a good way to go around that.”

Fleming added that Democrats had already turned California into a single-party state, “and you see the devastating impact it’s having there.”

I don’t where to begin. Let’s start with one of his lesser malakatudes, the thing about California. It’s a sign that he gets all his national news from Fox. California elected the most qualified person in the state Governor in 2010 and he turned its economy around. Additionally, Jerry Brown is a legendary cheapskate who’s not even all that liberal on fiscal issues. The Gret Stet’s current Governor is a pandering idiot who’s run state government into the ground and his likely successor is David Vitter. California is on the comeback trail whereas Louisiana is on the skids. Thanks, PBJ.

Does Doc Malaka even know what a “single-party state” is? He makes it sound as if President Obama is out to revive the Soviet Union or, even worse, turn the US & A into Cuba. If that’s the plan it only works in alternate years. Remember the 2010 and 2014 off-year elections, Doc? Y’all won. Me, I wouldn’t mind seeing a few more vintage ’50’s cars on the streets. I love me some chrome and tail fins…

It’s also beyond preposterous for a Southern Republican to issue warnings about a “single-party state.” It used to be a solidly Democratic South and then all the Dixiecrats became Republicans. Louisiana held out against the red tide for quite some time but succumbed in the wake of Katrina and the Federal Flood. The Gret Stet GOP wave accelerated after the election of the first black President although people like good ole Doc Malaka assure us that it has nothing to do with race. I guess that’s why Louisiana voted for Thurmond in 1948 and Wallace in 1968…

It gets worse. Fleming wants to succeed Bitter Vitter in the Senate. To further those frightening ambitions, he’s endorsed Vitter for Governor and is hoping to be appointed by Diaper Dave as his successor. Vitter already controls Double Bill Cassidy and given the fact that Fleming is as dumb as dirt, he’ll be Vitty’s man as well. That’s a lot of power for one politician to hold. Doc Malaka ought to be more careful who he calls a dictator considering that with his help Diaper Dave could be the Juan Peron of Louisiana. I refuse to make the Kingfish comparison because Huey would want to kick Vitter, Cassidy, and Fleming up the ass for their egregious malakatude. One of them, however, isn’t stupid but I’m not talking about Doc Malaka. And that is why John Fleming is malaka of the week.

My reverie about vintage American cars gave me an earworm so I’ll give John Hiatt the last word:

DEBRISVILLE RATS: A MODEST PROPOSAL

It’s time for another trip to the Adrastos Wayback Machine. Yesterday, I was putting some golden (moldy?) oldies online and I got First Draft confused with the archival site since both are on Word Press. In short, this sucker wound up posted here on the 2006 date listed below. I even got a compliment from Monkeyfister on Twitter so I had to re-post this re-post:

It was probably his first time seeing it but I’ll accept the praise. Thanks. Okay, let’s turn the dial on the Wayback Machine to 2006 when I routinely called New Orleans Debrisville:

Wed, 20 Sep 2006 16:06:17

The lead story on WWL’s Six O’Clock news last night was about a rat infestation at the Iberville Housing Project. The folks who have moved back in are positive it’s because there are so many empty units with full fridges and pantries. HANO asserts that all the fridges are empty and squeaky clean. Yeah right. Rodent removers have allegedly been hired but may not show up for weeks.

Anyway the story was chock-full-o-images of scurrying rats in need of exterminating. It occurred to me that there’s gotta be a way to whack the rats and raise some money to boot. Then a lightbulb appeared above my head, which made me feel like Bugs Bunny. The idea was inspired by seeing Sean Penn in town this weekend. In Woody Allen’s Sweet and Lowdown, Penn played a nut job virtuoso jazz guitarist whose idea of a good time was to visit the dump in whatever burg he was playing and shoot rats.  Sean keeps telling everyone how eager he is to help New Orleans, so why not have a Celebrity Rat Shooting event at the Iberville Project. People could pledge X amount per rat whacked. It’s a natural. Penn’s All The King’s Men co-star James Gandolfini has extensive experience killing rats on The Sopranos, after all. I’m not sure that I can visualize “one of our finest actors” shooting rats in da bricks, but people would pay money to see Jude Law try.

Just imagine the thrill of watching celebrities kill rodents to raise money. It’s a winner, I tell ya. Brian Williams and Anderson Cooper will be back here faster than you can say ratatouille or Dr. Raoult Ratard. Btw Dr. Ratard is the state epidemiologist. I am not making that name up. I’ve been wating for months to have an excuse to slap his name into a post. My life is complete.

I realize that this is not an entirely original idea: Jefferson Parish Sheriff Harry Lee’s deputies went nutria hunting a few years ago, BUT they didn’t use it as a fund raising device. Anyone have any suggestions as to who would be a good celebrity rat shooter? Maybe Bob Geldof of Boomtown Rats and Live Aid fame would cross the pond to take pot shots at the Iberville rats. I hesitate to suggest Vice President Duce: he’d probably shoot an innocent bystander. But the possibilities are as endless as this post.

Expo 67 Um, Make That Explo 2015

From Album 5

Well, it should make for quite the fireworks display:

MINDEN, La. — Just before midnight on Oct. 15, 2012, Sheriff Gary Sexton of Webster Parish was driving home from the airport when the sky lit up like midday. He flipped on his walkie-talkie to hear everyone asking: What on earth were those big booms?

As the sheriff would soon learn, two massive explosions had taken place at Camp Minden, a 15,000-acre site owned by the state in the pine woods just south of here, where private companies engage in military-related work. When the authorities began examining the blast site, they found something startling: thousands of tons of M6 propellant, used in the firing of artillery rounds, stuffed into plastic bags and piled into sagging cardboard boxes, many of them out in open fields.

Though the initial explosions were so big that smoke from them showed up on National Weather Service radar, no one was injured and damage was minimal. But more than two years later, figuring out how to dispose of 18 million pounds of unstable and dangerous material — who would do it and whether it could be done in a way that did not compound the danger — remains the talk of the parish.

The material belonged to Explo Systems, a private contractor. The 18 million pounds includes some explosives like TNT, but nearly all of it is M6 propellant, which can spontaneously ignite, a risk that increases significantly over time. Officials with the Environmental Protection Agency say it is the largest such stockpile in the country.

And…of course, Explo has gone Implo, declaring bankruptcy two years ago after several company officers were indicted on charges related to the 2012, um, “event.” So now the Gret Stet of Loosiana (which is stuck holding the bag–make that bags…hundreds of them…all ticking time bombs…or “big booms,” if you prefer) and the EPA have decided the solution for disposing of 9000 tons of hazardous, toxic, and volatile material is…burn it out in the open. Because after all, what could go wrong?

More here — video link.

Pulp Fiction Thursday: The Big Four

Agatha Christie was the queen of cozy mysteries but she wasn’t above the odd pulpy cover to boost sales. Here are two cover variations on one of her best Hercule Poirot novels:

Big Four-1Big Four-2

Exit Poll Flashback

I’ve been following the Israeli election very closely, hoping that the electorate would wake up, smell the coffee, and vote Likud out. It didn’t happen obviously; in part because a personally unpopular Prime Minister waved the bloody shirt of racism. He barely bothered to dog whistle, making a direct appeal to people’s worst instincts. It worked depressingly well. It usually does, alas.

In the run up to the election, pundits assured us that the Israeli exit polls were accurate; certainly more so than the ones in the US & A. Josh Marshall had to walk that belief back earlier today. I get where it was coming from: Israelis vote for a party list of candidates, not for a specific MK. Perhaps that’s why past exit polls were passably accurate. 2015 didn’t quite turn out that way, so it conjured up images of our 2000 and 2004 Presidential elections.

Who among us can forget the way the networks played handball with the Florida results in 2000? Ping pong or boomerangs might be a better analogy but the exit polls got it wrong and the election wound up being decided by the Supremes.

In 2004, the exit polls leaked like a sieve and showed John Kerry as the victor. I avidly consumed them and was absolutely convinced that Big John had won. Holy letdown, Batman. I have never, ever placed any faith in exit polls since then. If the Israeli exit polls had been right, the two major blocs would be deadlocked and there would have been an outside chance of a non-Bibi led government. Instead, the world has to put up with that goniff’s mishigas.

Back to 2004, while sifting through my archives I stumbled on this 2007 post called The Night I Kinda Sorta Met The Canal Street Madam:

How’s that for a teaser? And no I did not frequent her bordello. Get your minds out of the gutter folks. And that means you blondie.

T’was the night before the 2004 Presidential Election. Dr. A and I joined a group of friends,  Romans and countrymen at the corner of Napoleon and Magazine to wave Kerry-Edwards signs and encourage people to vote out the dolt. We all know how that turned out.

At one point I was on the neutral ground across the street from Miss Mae’s bar. There was a tall brunette who a tabloid writer would call statuesque. I suspect that Ashley or Ray would call her something else. Anyway I chatted with her for a few minutes about how horrible Bush was and I predicted that Kerry would win. We all know how that turned out too.
 
A few minutes later someone (I can’t recall who but it might have been Bob, Cookie Tom,  Julie or Jen) said to me: “Did you realize who you were talking to?”

“Nope. But she looked kinda familiar.”

“It was the Canal Street Madam.”

Since, I have the 2004 campaign on my mind, I’ll give Bruce Springsteen and John Fogerty the last word:

 

Paragraph Of The Day: Hadley Freeman Edition

I have a confession to make. I’m having a hard time taking the whole Reg Dwight versus Dolce and Gabbana story very seriously. Admittedly, what they said was *horrendous* but the whole idea of boycotting a luxury designer brand is ludicrous. I seem to have been boycotting it prior to their channeling Silvio Berlusconi and being homophobic homosexuals. My boycott is strictly price driven but it enables me to be in solidarity with Elton John. Woot.

The Guardian’s Hadley Freeman finds this dispute between the super rich to be as funny as I do. I couldn’t pick between the last 2 graphs so here are both of them:

Anyway, Dolce and Gabbana’s views on parenting would have remained unknown to the greater public had not good ol’ Elton John barrelled on in and denounced the duo on Instagram. And at this point, things promptly went kray-kray. Elton has every right to be a bit cross about the duo’s views, not least because he has two children with his husband, David Furnish, and his response was relatively measured (for Elton). Gabbana, however, is having none of it – and after denouncing Elton as “a fascist” (you’d think an Italian would be clearer on the correct definition), he has spent the past 36 hours making angry collages on Instagram, which is molto tragico. After Elton called for a boycott of Dolce & Gabbana, Stefano is now calling for a boycott of Elton for, um, something, and he has, hilariously, adopted the Charlie Hebdo hashtag for himself: “Je suis D&G”. He has also since issued the typical non-apology apology press release, saying: “We talked about our way of seeing reality, but it was never our intention to judge other people’s choices.” Translation: “We see children of gay couples as abominations, no judgement! Buy our stuff!”

But I think we are forgetting the real victim of this battle: Madonna. Now, Madonna is no friend of Elton (he once called her “a fucking fairground stripper”), but she is a friend of the gay folk. She is also, however, a friend of Dolce & Gabbana. And now she is facing the Sophie’s Choice scenario of having to choose between her gay fans and fashion. Truly, I think we have just witnessed the 21st century’s version of the assassination of Franz Ferdinand – and all alliances are in doubt here. As Dolce & Gabbana would say: “mamma mia!”

The whole piece is hilarious as is much of Mr. Freeman’s output. Every time I see the name Gabbana, I crave a banana but I shan’t be boycotting them or Elton John for that matter:

 

Album Cover Art Wednesday: Room To Roam

The Waterboys have a special place in my heart. Each year as St Patrick’s Day approaches, I pull out Fisherman’s Blues and Room To Roam and play the hell out of them. They are, quite simply, two of the best examples of Celtic folk rock that I can think of. Musically it’s a coin toss, but Room To Roam has the better cover so that’s why I’m featuring it today.

The cover was designed by Anni  Siggins and features a photo by Simon Fowler. What’s not to love about the Waterboys on a carnival ride?

the-waterboys-room-to-roam-sleeve-90s

Room To Roam was remastered and re-released in 2008 in an extended version. Here’s the 2008 disc in the playlist  format:

Another Bright Republican Light Goes Dark

What a moron: 

Schock, they reported, billed both entities a combined 172,520 miles on his personal Chevrolet Tahoe between January 2010 and July 2014. But when the Tahoe was sold that July, it had only 81,860 miles on the odometer.

Remember when he was the new hot piece of presidential manliness?

… When [a Chris Wallace interview with Schock] airs in Fox News Sunday’s “Power Player” segment, Wallace has added a coda: “What about Schock’s future?” he asks. “Governor Schock?” Pause for effect. “President Schock?”

The fact that he is not ugly caused many, many Republicans to lose they damn minds. FINALLY, we have a candidate who is not physically repulsive! 

Illinois Republican Rep. Aaron Schock is Alex P. Keaton all grown up.

YOU TAKE THAT BACK. Alex P. Keaton does not deserve that.

A.

White People, Can We Give Up This Word?

We do not need it. 

Ferguson confronted James about the “divisive” nature of the word and said rappers are “afraid that they’ll lose out on money and sales” if the n-word goes away. He even told James, “You’re making money off it!” James shot back that he’s giving the n-word too much power, arguing that he gets money from his music and creativity and not the n-word alone.

Ferguson even told James that the n-word is the only reason he’s on the show. Hill piped up that he’s actually on the show because a white woman used the n-word first, and also that “white people were saying the word nigger before Trinidad James was born.”

I am just about done with the supposed oppression of white people not being “able” to use the n-word without somebody saying, “Jesus, dude, it’s 2015, shut your fucking cakehole.” I do not understand my fellow pales’ need to stake some kind of claim here. We have the whole of the English language available to us. We can let this one go.

We can let black people have this word, and use it or not, without feeling the need to horn in like a bunch of damn drama queens all “I GET TO SAY IT TOO YOU KNOW FREE SPEECH ARGLE BLARGLE FLAP FLAP FLAP.” Everybody on TV understands the difference between the language used within a historically oppressed group and the language used against it from the outside.

They all get it. Probably most people who grew up in the 2000s and belong to a college frat get it, too. Everybody gets that nobody kicks my little brother but me, so this is just slapping your linguistic dick around. It’s needy and gross. Let it go.

A.

What We Find Divisive

It’s so hard when the politicization turns around on you: 

In addition to the LGBT veterans’ group, parade organizers this year approved a request to march from Boston Pride, a gay rights group that holds its own parade in June.

The Massachusetts State Council of the Knights of Columbus withdrew from the celebration because the event had “become politicized and divisive,” its leaders said. The Immaculate Heart of Mary School in Harvard announced that its band would not march because OUTVETS had been invited.

Things are never divisive and politicized when nothing changes.

Things are never divisive and politicized then.

As long as nobody in power is upset, then really nobody is upset. Nobody whose opinion matters. Nobody who’s real.

Things are not divisive and politicized when everything happens the way it’s always happened. Things are not disturbed. Everything is neat and tidy. Everything is clean. Everybody knows what to expect. Everybody who matters, that is.

Divisive and politicized is only for the times when somebody asks for something that’s been denied them. That’s divisive. That’s politicized. That disturbs the normal order of business and that upsets everyone who shouldn’t be upset. Everyone who matters.

It is not divisive, or political, to prevent people from marching side by side with people they want to march with. It is only divisive and political to allow it, because that means a religious group or private school band has to give something up.

(That others have been giving something up for years, that others have never had anything to give up in the first place, that’s not divisive or political.)

Divisive isn’t a problem. Politicized isn’t a problem. These aren’t bad things. These are the fires in which new worlds are born, and closing your ears and eyes and holding your breath until you turn blue, refusing to walk side by side down your street with your neighbor, that’s not creating division. That’s realizing you were divided before, and using politics to build a bridge.

A.

Odds & Sods: March Reading List

the-who odds--sods

The Idea of March have come and gone without my being stabbed in the back, so I figured I should celebrate by suggesting some articles. It’s a good thing I don’t know anyone named Brutus although my late mother had a crazy, rather incontinent dog by that name. He never stabbed me in the back. He did, however, pee on my copy of Tupelo Honey. I guess he wanted to be named Ocatavian…

The Israeli Election: TPM’s Josh Marshall has been blogging the hell out of it so y’all should check out the editor’s blog at his joint. My favorite recent post on the subject was one about a forgotten Labor Prime Minister, Levi Eshkol, and why Isaac Herzog wants to be like him. It amounts to a pledge for less drama to an electorate worn out by Bibi the actor. I’d call him a ham but it wouldn’t be kosher…

Speaking of the annoying Mr. Netanyahu, Haaretz has an excellent thumbsucker (think piece, A’s not the only one who knows newspaper slang) about why Bibi and Likud may lose the election.

American Political Scandals 101: Andrew Burstein and Nancy Isenberg try to put the stupid, petty, and downright ridiculous media controversy about Hillary’s emails in historical context.  Btw, the authors are LSU profs. Hopefully, Governor PBJ won’t shitcan them for writing above the 4th grade level.

School Daze: Anyone remember Spike Lee’s 1988 film about African-American frats and such? It was pretty good, actually, even if it goes down as a lesser joint.

Anyway, I’m not the only NOLA blogger who has been ransacking his archives. Jason Berry aka Damabala was inspired by the Okie racist frat flap to pull out a 2010 post about then Mayoral candidate John Georges and his bratty, fratty days. Georges is currently the owner of the New Orleans Advocate but he’s still a DKE at heart. Jason’s post is called, quite appropriately, The Specter Of Jim Crow Still Haunts The South’s Fraternity Row.

The Original New Orleans Diva: Let’s close on a lighter note. My twitter friend and fellow San Francisco Giants fan April Siese has written a superb profile of the late, great Adelaide Brennan. So, make yourself a cocktail and read about a true New Orleans original.

Class dismissed, but not before I circle back to Tupelo Honey:

Bubble Durst In New Orleans

The remarkable HBO documentary series The Jinx wrapped up last night. Many true crime stories seek to exonerate the innocent, but this one is the story of an entitled, rich sociopath who decided to speak to filmmaker Andrew Jarecki. My theory is that Robert Durst did so because Jarecki cast Ryan Gosling as the Durst-like character in the fictionalized version of  this story, All Good Things. Who wouldn’t be flattered by having a dreamboat cast as them? I’m holding out for George Clooney myself.

Agreeing to sit down with Jarecki seems to have been Durst’s undoing since he was arrested yesterday in New Orleans:

Fugitive New York real estate heir Robert Durst was arrested in New Orleans on Saturday on an out-of-state warrant in connection with the unsolved Hollywood murder of his friend Susan Berman.

 Durst, 71, recently became an increasingly famous figure due to a new HBO documentary, “The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst.” The miniseries is about Durst’s life and his possible role in three murders, including Berman’s, and it recently revealed new information about Berman’s death. The series ended Sunday night.

Berman was a journalist and author who worked for the San Francisco Examiner, New York magazine and other publications before writing the 1981 book “Easy Street: The True Story of a Mob Family,” about her life as the daughter of Davie Berman, a mob figure in Las Vegas.

Berman, who was affectionately given the name “Jewish Mafia Princess,” was found killed execution-style in 2000 with a single bullet to the back of her head at her California home on Benedict Canyon Road. According to reports by the Los Angeles Times, the murder was puzzling because there was little evidence connecting a killer to the scene and no sign of forced entry to her home.

Talk about the truth being stranger than fiction. The last two episodes of The Jinx played a major role in breaking the case as well. If you haven’t seen it, check it out. The pay-off is worth it.

I’m not sure why so many weirdo crime stories have to roll through my city but in Durst’s case it makes perverse sense:

A source close to Durst and Berman said this isn’t the first time that Durst has fled to New Orleans following police investigations. While he was on trial in Galveston, he jumped bond and fled the city — a crime for which he was later found guilty.

Julie Smith, a New Orleans novelist and former journalist, said Durst had fled from Texas to New Orleans, where he rented an apartment under the alias Diana Wynn and presented himself as a woman. After he was caught and his apartment was searched, authorities found a wig used for his alias and a money clip that had belonged to Berman.

I guess that’s why, we’re known for our drag queens. A weird detail in a bizarre story. I hope the charges stick this time.

Today on Tommy T’s Obsession with the Freeperati – putrid potpourri edition

Suit up, people – loads of bulging drums of Freepitude to decant..

I guess I’ve put it off long enough – time to address the email scandal!

Jeb Bush dumps emails, home addresses, and social security numbers of Florida residents online
The Verge ^ | February 10, 2015 | T.C. Sottek

Posted on ‎2‎/‎10‎/‎2015‎ ‎4‎:‎29‎:‎32‎ ‎PM by maggief

Jeb Bush, a rumored 2016 Republican presidential candidate, just decided to publish hundreds of thousands of emails sent to him during his time as governor of Florida. On its face it seems like a great idea in the name of transparency, but there’s one huge problem: neither Bush nor those who facilitated the publication of the records, including the state government, decided to redact potentially sensitive personal information from them.

“In the spirit of transparency, I am posting the emails of my governorship here,” a note on Bush’s website says. “Some are funny; some are serious; some I wrote in frustration.” Some also contain the email addresses, home addresses, phone numbers, and social security numbers of Florida residents. The emails are available in Outlook format, and can be searched on the web at Bush’s website.

1 posted on 2‎/‎10‎/‎2015‎ ‎4‎:‎29‎:‎32‎ ‎PM by maggief

Oops.

To: maggief

Dat be a crime

2 posted on 2‎/‎10‎/‎2015‎ ‎4‎:‎30‎:‎44‎ ‎PM by driftdiver (I could eat it raw, but why do that when I have a fire.)

dubya
.
To: maggief

G_D D_M this man is DUMB AS A BRICK!!!!!!

W had the brains but not the looks of brain, Jeb only got the Looks….

4 posted on ‎2‎/‎10‎/‎2015‎ ‎4‎:‎31‎:‎05‎ ‎PM by GraceG (Protect the Border from Illegal Aliens, Don’t Protect Illegal Alien Boarders…)

To: maggief

Say whaat?!? Is this satire?

8 posted on 2‎/‎10‎/‎2015‎ ‎4‎:‎32‎:‎57‎ ‎PM by TADSLOS (The Event Horizon has come and gone. Buckle up and hang on.)

Cant-tell-if-serious
.
They don’t seem too impressed.
To: GraceG; Jim Robinson; Admin Moderator

May want to move this to breaking news while the files are still available.

See also 21 of 22
GraceG to magief

PST files here:

http://jebbushemails.com/email/search

Download it now before they scrub the damned thing then use this to destroy this RINo POS.

++++++++++++

Related:

http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2015/02/10/read-jeb-bush-emails-with-us-find-best-ones-and-win-acts-of-love-prizes/

READ JEB BUSH EMAILS WITH US, FIND BEST ONES—AND WIN ‘ACTS OF LOVE’ PRIZES!

24 posted on ‎2‎/‎10‎/‎2015‎ ‎4‎:‎49‎:‎37‎ ‎PM by maggief

0ebad-6a00d8341c5ced53ef01310f3ef2f2970c-pi
.
And now – the post of the thread!
To: maggief

What a gaffe and what a goof!

And we thought W was the dumb one.

5 posted on 2‎/‎10‎/‎2015‎ ‎4‎:‎32‎:‎23‎ ‎PM by miserare (“Reverence for life–life of all kinds–is the first principle of civilization.”

~~Schweitzer)
More after the document dump…

Continue reading

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Shorter Kerry: Why Should I Apologize When You’re The One Who Sucks?

Seriously: 

Kerry called the letter, which warned Iran that any deal signed by Obama and U.S. allies could be undone by a future president or Congress, “unprecedented.”

“It specifically inserts itself directly to the leader of another country, saying, ‘Don’t negotiate with these guys because we’re going to change this,’ which by the way is not only contrary to the Constitution with the respect to the executive’s right to negotiate, but it is incorrect because they cannot change an executive agreement,” Kerry said in an interview that aired on CBS’ Face the Nation.

Kerry said he will not apologize for the letter, pushed by freshman Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., when negotiations resume Sunday night in Switzerland with Iranian representatives.

“Not on your life,” Kerry said. “I’m not going to apologize for the … unconstitutional, un-thought-out action by somebody who’s been in the United Sates Senate for 60-something days,” he said, referring to Cotton. “That’s just inappropriate.”

That sound you just heard was Tom Cotton’s alleged balls being sucked back up into his body to protect them from this:

kerrysoccer

A.

Speaking of Our Morally Bankrupt Press

Gross, but typical: 

Others complained about Williams’s unwillingness to go after hard-hitting stories. Multiple sources told me that former NBC investigative reporters Michael Isikoff and Lisa Myers battled with Williams over stories. In February 2013, Isikoff failed to interest Williams in a piece about a confidential Justice Department memo that justified killing American citizens with drones. He instead broke the story on [The] Rachel Maddow [Show]. That October, Myers couldn’t get Williams to air a segment about how the White House knew as far back as 2010 that some people would lose their insurance policies under Obamacare. Frustrated, Myers posted the article on [C]NBC’s website, where it immediately went viral. Williams relented and ran it the next night. “He didn’t want to put stories on the air that would be divisive,” a senior NBC journalist told me. According to a source, Myers wrote a series of scathing memos to then-NBC senior vice-president Antoine Sanfuentes documenting how Williams suppressed her stories. Myers and Isikoff eventually left the network (and both declined to comment).

That is your ENTIRE FUCKING JOB. That’s all this is. God, get out of the seat if you don’t want to piss people off.

A.

Making It Hard to Love Newspapers

Those who cover the industry are finally starting to notice that newspapers are doing themselves in: 

44 percent of U.S. dailies now charge $1 for a weekday paper, according to a 2014 AAM 2014 study, while 39 percent charge 75 cents. It wasn’t that many years ago that 50 cents replaced a quarter as the standard. And five years ago, half (48 percent) of newspaper publishers charged 50 cents; now only 15 percent are at that price.

For Sunday editions, $2.00 is the prevailing charge, with 40 percent of dailies using it. Another 28 percent charge $1.50. 12 percent of Sunday editions are sold for more than two dollars.

We have to ask how long an industry can offer less and less and charge more and more.

What’s happened in newspaper pricing is that too many publishers have doubled their prices while halving the size, and quality, of their products. I can’t think — nominations invited — of other industries that have done that with longer-term success.

It’s like selling a 20-ounce bottle of Coke for a buck — and then three years later hawking a 10-ounce bottle for two dollars.

I would suggest the music industry, in the early part of the 2000s, as an example of when faced with declining album sales made the product worse, but certainly the newspaper industry is alone in its achievements of insulting its customers while asking them to pay more for less.

Add to that the embarrassing habit of pretending Google doesn’t exist — putting syndicated columnists behind a paywall when I can find them online for free — and jerking off “brands” like Michael Sneed who peddle months-old tidbits of gossip as major stories, and you wind up giving people absolutely no reason for loyalty.

There are many, many scenarios where print can still be vital and profitable, but those who run print operations are slowly taking those away.

A.

Sunday Morning Video: What’s Going on

Here’s a 2008 American Masters film about the late, great Marvin Gaye:

Friday Night Music: Irish Heartbeat

St. Patrick’s Day proper is next Tuesday but tomorrow is the Irish Channel St Paddy’s Day parade. That means I’ll be day drinking at the O’Hackenberg open house and grubbing for veggies from the floats. That’s right, they throw cabbages as well as the odd tater, onion and carrot. Our hosts provide the beer, corned beef and whiskey and we’re in charge of catching the sides. Seems fair to me.

Here’s everyone’s favorite Irish misanthrope Van Morrison with the Chieftains:

The Adrastos Wayback Machine Is Online

It’s going to be a long, slow process because uploading the blog-city files collectively  has proven to be almost impossible but there’s enough meat on the virtual bone at the site to post this link, Adrastos: Welcome To The Wayback Machine.

I’ve opted for the greatest hits approach and have focused on the period between 12/2005 and 5/2006 to begin with. That covers post-K tales as well as the 2006 municipal election, which was by far and away the most interesting one since I’ve lived in New Orleans.

There’s an introductory post pinned to the top of the blog. I still have no clue as to why my commas went missing; maybe they’re pro-Nagin and disapproved of my mocking the then Mayor.

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