Category Archives: Guns

Quote Of The Day: McCloskey Mishigas Edition

One of the stupidest things to come to national attention in 2020 was the McCloskey mishigas. They’re the St. Louis couple who raced out of stately McCloskey manor to “defend” themselves from BLM protestors. It’s hard to take someone who’s dressed like a mime seriously. I hate mimes. I’m not crazy about Mark and Patricia McCloskey either.

The McCloskeys have ridden this dubious incident to a speaking slot at the RNC, a guilty plea, and a senate run by Marky Mark or is that Macky Mac? They should have taken some gun safety classes instead. I’ve never even held an unloaded gun and I know better than to point a rod at anyone. I learned that from watching Mike Hammer and Frank Cannon.

This minor league Pennywise held a rally the other day in a parking lot. It bombed but led to a hilarious piece in the Riverfront Times by Daniel Hill. The opening paragraph is a classic:

Noted local criminal Mark McCloskey played host to a barbecue/political rally on Sunday afternoon, drawing tens of admirers to the sweltering parking lot of a closed outlet mall in St. Louis County to celebrate the one-year anniversary of the time he pulled a gun on a crowd of people who otherwise would never have noticed or cared he existed.

Make sure you read the whole damn piece. It contains spit take after spit take. Well done, Mr. Hill.

The entertainment at this rally ducked by Trumpist “luminaries” such as Michael Flynn and Madison Cawthorn was a Deep Purple cover band whose lead singer used to be in REO Speedwagon. I am not making this up.

The last word goes to Deep Purple with a song that was performed by the aforementioned cover band at the sparsely attended rally:

Names In A List

Flowers at VTA Yard

I was going to write about something else till local events overrode that plan.

Once again the country faces yet again another (I can’t use enough synonyms for often) mass shooting. This one was a little closer to home which makes it no less sorrowful but much more impactful on those of us in NorCal.

This was the largest mass shooting in NorCal history, eclipsing the 101 California Massacre in 1993. I hate that we have names for these unimaginable events. I’m sick at heart for the families who lost a husband, son, brother, best friend in an act that was as horrible was it was preventable.

They were just heading into or finishing work, another day moving the citizens of San Jose around from place to place. The shooting was timed to catch the most people being there, shift change. Half of them not quite awake at 6AM, half of them dog tired at 6AM. Just working folk who never did harm to anyone, the kind of people politicians always say they are for. I’ll add in that the names of the men who didn’t get home yesterday are a perfect cross section of the cultural melting pot that San Jose is: White, Hispanic, Sikh, Arab.

It was an equal opportunity shooting.

Read anything you want about the shooter (and I will not name him, his name should be lost to the eddies of history) and you will not find a single person saying “Oh, he was such a quiet man” or “he was a nice guy”. Again and again he’s described in anti-social terms, from his ex-wife to his ex-girlfriend (who had a restraining order on him) to his neighbors. I half expected to hear someone saying “yeah, I pretty much expected something like this from him”.

An angry white male loner incapable of a sustained romantic relationship who views his co-workers as having somehow swindled him out of better jobs and who owned not one but two semi-automatic hand guns. Copy that description and hold on to it because it fits all 15 of the shooters behind this year’s mass shootings. And it will fit the next 15, and the 15 after that.

Don’t even give me your “thoughts and prayers” Repugnicants. Don’t give me your piety about the 2nd Amendment which once again I will take the opportunity to point out that unlike the 1st Amendment does NOT include the phrase “Congress shall make no law”.  This is exactly the time to enact tough restrictions on gun possession, purchase, and registration. You want to own a gun? Then you have to be willing to accept the following:

  1. A limit to the number of guns you can own
  2. Full background checks at the time of purchase (including mental health)
  3. A national database of gun ownership, location, and transfer
  4. No gun show sales, purchase only through authorized sellers
  5. An absolute ban on military style assault weapons
  6. Limitations on the amount and specifications of bullets
  7. Mandatory gun safety and training classes
  8. Bans on modifications to most weapons (can’t turn a semi into full automatic)
  9. All weapons to be confiscated upon the granting of restraining orders

I absolutely can not see how any of these interfere with any law abiding person’s 2nd Amendment rights. They aren’t perfect but they at least make it so that if you own a gun you are less likely to use it to randomly kill innocent people. Were they in place on Wednesday nine human beings would be at home with their families today instead of just being names on a list.

  • Paul Delacruz Megia, age 42
  • Taptejdeep Singh, age 36
  • Adrian Balleza, age 29
  • Jose Dejesus Hernandez III, age 35
  • Timothy Michael Romo, age 49
  • Michael Joseph Rudometkin, age 40
  • Abdolvahab Alaghmandan, age 63
  • Lars Kepler Lane, age 63
  • Alex Ward Fritch, age 49

We’ll end with a local band as would seem appropriate. This song is about how the most patriotic thing you can do is to lay down your arms.

Shapiro Out

Malaka Of The Week: Briscoe Cain

Hand to God, I am not mocking a child. Texas State Representative Briscoe Cain is 36 years old; he just looks like a tween. Cain is perhaps the wingnuttiest member of a reactionary lege. He’s in the news as a co-author of the latest Texas voter suppression bill. And that is why Briscoe Cain is malaka of the week.

Briscoe Cain came on my radar screen during this segment of the Rachel Maddow Show:

The racist relic in question is not Briscoe Cain himself, although the label fits, but language in the Texas constitution about the “purity of the ballot box.” It dates to the Jim Crow era and was originally used to ensure that the dominant party primary was all-white. The “purity” language was included in Cain’s impure bill.

In the clip, Malaka B pretends not to understand the significance of the “purity” language, but I’m not buying it. He looks like a middle school kid trying to get out of a test by claiming that his Peepaw or Meemaw died. That’s Southern for grandfather and grandmother.

I went to school with a kid who pulled that stunt so many times that he seemed to have dozens of Papous or Yiayias. That’s Greek for grandfather and grandmother.

Cain is the sort of committed Christian who should be committed. He’s anti-LGBTQ, anti-vax, and anti-mask. I’m anti-Briscoe Cain.

In his freshman session, Malaka B was named one of the worst legislators by the Texas Monthly:

We typically exempt freshmen from the Worst list. We usually forgive their trangressions, because they don’t know how the Legislature works. So just know that we tried. We tried really hard to give Briscoe Cain a pass. But he left us little choice.

When we asked Capitol insiders for Worst list suggestions, his name, almost universally, was the first one mentioned. During one floor debate, when a fellow legislator fell ill with a serious intestinal ailment, Cain objected to the usual procedure of granting the lawmaker an excused absence and called for a record vote. He was the only no vote. But one particular moment, during the budget debate on the House floor, best exemplifies Cain’s uninformed and belligerent performance this session. He offered an amendment to defund a state council that promotes palliative care. He called it a “death panel.” Under questioning from his colleagues, it became clear that Cain didn’t know that palliative care is the treatment of terminally ill people for pain and anxiety to ease their passing. He eventually withdrew his amendment, but not before he’d very nearly zeroed out funding for a good program without actually knowing what it does. Thankfully his colleagues saved him from himself in that instance. Unfortunately, there was no one to save the rest of us from Briscoe Cain.

Belligerence and ignorance are a toxic combination as is everything about Cain’s brief political career so far.

In the spirit of his lord and master former President* Pennywise, Cain likes to pick fights, then claim it’s all a joke.

He shaded Steven Hawking after his death:

This is the case of a living dipshit trolling a dead genius. It’s typical of this chickenshit creep that he deleted the tweet after he was universally slammed for it.

In a further display of keyboard courage, Malaka B threatened a fellow Texan:

This stunt landed Malaka B in Twitter jail. He doesn’t have the guts to threaten Beto in real life: Malaka B is 5’7″ and Beto is 6’4″. I double dog dare him to take a poke at long tall Texan Beto.

I wonder if wee Malaka B used his time in jail to play prisoner and sheriff? He thinks he’s some sort of Western hero, after all. At best, he’s a Wyatt Earp Mini-Me.

I bet he can’t pull off this rocking chair stunt perfected by Henry Fonda as Wyatt Earp in John Ford’s My Darling Clementine:

I bet Beto could do it since he’s as gangly as Fonda and two inches taller. It all comes down to John Ford movies with me.

Briscoe Cain has a well-established pattern of picking a fight, then running away the minute there’s any resistance. It happened with the “purity of the ballot box” controversy as well. The language was pulled from the final bill.

Malaka B is a puffed-up chump who thinks he’s a he-man. He’s as phony as the Impeached Insult Comedian and twice as cowardly. And that is why Briscoe Cain is malaka of the week.

The last word goes to Elvis Costello:

Today on Tommy T’s Obsession with random ruminations – “cold dead hands” edition

First of all – I’m a gun owner.

I own a Glock G21 handgun, a single-shot .22 rifle that belonged to my Grandfather, and a .410 shotgun that was used in my days as a ranch hand to dispatch armadillo (our cattle were breaking their legs in armadillo holes), and put rabbits, duck, and pheasant on the table.

I also trained with the M1 Garand and the original M16 jam-o-matic in my Allen Academy days. I shot Sharpshooter level with both hands, and still do that well on the rare occasion that I still go to the range .

And no, I don’t EVER carry my handgun around with me in the hope I might get to shoot someone.

So let’s just disarm (see what I did there?) the “You gun-haters want to take away all our guns” trope right now.

I have as much use for a modified (full-auto and burst settings disabled) assault rifle as I do for a
flamethrower or hand grenade.  And unless you are in the military, police responding to an active shooter,  or are planning to kill a whole shitload of people, neither do you.

It’s a bit like someone with a Piper Cherokee saying that the Government wants to take away his plane, just because you can’t buy an A10 Warthog with a working GAU-8 Avenger rotary cannon.

Ain’t the same thing, numbnuts.
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10,000 Quatloos to the commenter who can pick out the author in the pic below :

 

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Malaka Of The Week: Amanda Chase

The woman in the red and white elephant skirt with an assault weapon draped around her neck is Virginia State Senator Amanda Chase. She’s running for the Republican nomination for Governor. I don’t think the Commonwealth is ready for a Governor who describes herself as “Trump in heels.” She looks more like Trump in sandals to me. And that is why Amanda Chase is malaka of the week.

Chase is from the Richmond suburbs, Midlothian in Chesterfield County to be precise. It’s a town name I used to like but now regard with considerable fear and Midloathing. It does, however, make for a memorable nickname: the Midlothian Malaka.

Chase gets around. She spoke at the “Stop The Steal” rally that preceded the 1/6 Dipshit Insurrection. She denies storming the Capitol but has vehemently defended the insurrectionists, “These were not rioters and looters. These were patriots who love their country and do not want to see our great republic turn into a socialist country.”

She was censured by her colleagues for that bit of brazen dipshittery and is fighting it in court. You would have thought that she’d wear it as a badge of pride.

Her latest cause is defending this guy:

After the verdict in a state whose capitol is 1.200 miles away from home, the Midlothian Malaka attacked the jury and praised convicted murderer Derek Chauvin:

Virginia state Sen. Amanda Chase (R), a prominent Republican candidate in her state’s gubernatorial race, copied Greene’s fear-mongering tactic in response to Chauvin’s verdict by saying that it made her “sick.”

During a campaign stop on Tuesday shortly after the announcement of Chauvin’s verdict, Chase griped that she is “so concerned about our law enforcement right now quitting. And you should be, too.”

Chase, who describes herself as “Trump in heels” and was censured by the Virginia state Senate after praising the mob behind the Capitol attack as “patriots,” doubled down on her stance in a written statement.

“I’m concerned that the decision was politically motivated more to prevent civil unrest than to serve justice,” Chase said in a written statement, according to the Washington Post. “The decision made today sends a clear message to law enforcement; the justice system doesn’t have your back.”

I wonder if she’s going to start a Chauvin fan club and invite rotten defense lawyer Eric Nelson to speak. They both make me sick.

Is it just me or does Eric Nelson look like Garth Algar?

Nelson can still suck it.

Back to the Midlothian Malaka.  She has been on my radar for quite some time. If there’s a retrograde position, she’s taken it. Her comments about rape are reprehensible even by her own low standards: “It’s those who are naive and unprepared that end up raped. Sorry. But I’m not going to be a statistic.”

She’s also a hardcore Lost Causer. She adores the Robert E. Lee statue on Monument Avenue in Richmond, which state and local officials want lost like the cause it represents. She described the removal attempt as: “a cowardly capitulation to the looters and domestic terrorists” and an “overt effort to erase all white history.”

Does Malaka Mandy kiss her children with that mouth?

The good news is that the Midlothian Malaka’s chances of being elected Governor are slim and none and slim was just consigned to the dust heap of history. The bad news is that she has any support at all. She’s Virginia’s answer to Marjorie Taylor Greene and Lauren Boebert. And that is why Amanda Chase is malaka of the week.

I’ve used Sweet Virginia many times over the years, but it has never been more appropriate: the Midlothian Malaka is the shit that needs to be scraped off the Commonwealth’s shoes. That’s why the last word goes to the Rolling Stones:

 

 

Full Metal Jackasses

Ruger AR-556

This is my rifle. There are many others like it, but this one is mine. My rifle is my best friend. It is my life. I must master it as I must master my life. Without me, my rifle is useless. Without my rifle, I am useless.

 

Whenever there is a mass shooting “incident” a predictable series of news stories follow about 1) how easy it was for the shooter to obtain his weapon of mass destruction and 2) how this isn’t a gun issue, it’s a mental health issue.

The first type of story will show how the shooter walked into their local arms dealer, er, I mean, gun store, filled out all the forms, went through the background check (if applicable) and proudly walked out with a new AR-556 automatic pistol and probably a free box of ammo the arms dealer, er, I mean, legitimate gun store owner threw in as a sweetener to “buy it today”.

You know what you never read about? How much that weapon cost.

So I did a little research on the weapon of choice for the Colorado shooter (the supermarket one, not the movie theater one or the ones at the high school) and found that he probably paid somewhere between $700 and $800 for it. It has a list price of $899 but other than the manufacturer’s website no one sells it for that price.

I’ve sold mediocre furniture and appliances for more than that.

We’ll be generous and say he bought it for $750 (plus that free box of ammo throw in). With the Colorado Springs sales tax of 8.2% he’s out the door at $811.50.

Too cheap. Way too cheap.

We’ll get back to price in a moment.

The second type of story will detail how politicians, Republican politicians to be precise, will prattle on about how this is a mental health issue, that “mental health is a large contributor to any type of violence or shooting violence” and that tougher anti-gun laws are unconstitutional, unnecessary, and will mean that only criminals will have guns.

They will then implicitly or explicitly say that while it’s a problem that needs to be addressed, well there just ain’t the money in the budget to address it with.

Oh you Repugnicans, always having the reason for the problem ready at your fingertips but never wanting to push the button that fixes it.

So in the spirit of compromise, a concept that has gone out of style in politics today, I’d like to offer a proposal that just might make everyone happy.

Tax the shit out of guns, then turn around and use the money raised to fund mental health clinics.

The actual amount of the tax can be debated but I think perhaps a sliding scale based on the type of weapon. Single shot rifles, maybe just 15%. Revolvers 20%. On and on up depending on the ammo capacity and firing rate of the weapon till we reach military style automatic weapons which, though I believe they should be illegal for the general public to own, could be taxed at 200%-500%.

There’d be no Second Amendment issue, the government isn’t preventing you from owning a gun just saying that if you want one you have to pay the taxes on it. There’s already sales tax on the purchase so the concept of the government imposing a tax on that so called constitutionally protected product is legally valid.

Likewise the validity of taking all money raised and earmarking it for one purpose is a well established doctrine.  Gasoline taxes are only used for road building, driver’s license fees are directed to highway safety projects, there are special taxes on televisions to offset the cost of their eventual recycling or on refrigerators for CFC removal.

If you are worried that this is would be a regressive tax that unfairly affects poor people well buddy it’s not poor people who buy large capacity automatic weapons. If they own a gun at all it will likely be on the smaller capacity, single shot end of the gun spectrum and thus less tax burdened.

No our brand of American mass murderers tend to be middle class, just the socio-economic group I’d be targeting with this tax. They could still afford to get that AR-15 but it’s gonna put a serious hole in their bank account, one that just might make them think twice about the purchase.

Look I have no illusions that such a tax would stop a person who truly wants to commit mass murder or who wants to commit “suicide by police” from buying that gun. That last Visa bill is going to go unpaid one way or another. But it might be the straw that breaks the gun manufacturer’s back in terms of mass production of the gun for non-military use. If the gun store owner can’t sell it because it’s bottom line price makes it too expensive for the middle class “gun enthusiast” to own, then the shopkeeper is not going to order as many which in turn will mean fewer being produced which in turn will mean that particular market will dry up.

In the meantime high capacity rapid fire automatic weapons that are sold will at least be doing some measure of good by funding the mental health services that might just turn a potential mass murderer into a productive, not destructive, human being.

Chris Rock had a similar idea. This one’s okay by me as well.

Shapiro Out

Groundhog Day

I’ve written many times over the years about the latest mass shooting. I’m almost at a loss for words after 2 mass shootings in 9 days.

While I gather my thoughts, below are links to my past-post atrocity posts; many of which have a pink tinge, Pink Floyd, that is. I’m sure there are more but I’ve lost track after 12 years at First Draft.

12/3/2015: Still Comfortably Numb

06/16/2016: Still Comfortably Numb Revisited

10/10/2017: Still Comfortably Numb Revisited 2

10/29/2018: Kristallnacht In Broad Daylight

03/18/2019: Post Mayhem Rituals

08/05/2019: Still Numb

I guess I missed 2020 because of the pandemic. One of the few good things about the year of the plague.

There are guns in every country. The citizenry in the English-speaking world are particularly well-armed. But American-style mass shootings are rare elsewhere in the world. Why? Laws requiring firearms licenses, background checks, and above all else bans on assault weapons and their components.

The South is often demonized as a heavily armed region. My family is from the West and there were guns everywhere as well. Not in my house: my Republican father wouldn’t allow guns in his house after having to use one in World War II. He didn’t judge our relatives who had firearms for hunting and such, nor do I.

When I was growing up, mass shootings were rare. There were lunatic killers out there, but they weren’t packing assault rifles that made the Tommy Guns used by Prohibition era gangsters look almost as tame as this toy replica:

Then came the rise of the NRA and mass shootings became more common as they espoused a purist nearly theological interpretation of the Second Amendment.

Once the 1994 assault weapons ban was allowed to lapse, the 21st Century became the golden age of mass mayhem.

It keeps happening. The reactions on both sides are as predictable as they are tiresome: thoughts and prayers and yadda, yadda, yadda.

I don’t know about you, but I hate making the same mistakes over and over again. I try to avoid that in my own life. I prefer to make new and original mistakes.

As a country we keep making the same mistakes over and over again. The mass shootings keep coming and our reactions are almost stereotypical. We always have to hear from Joe Manchin who continues to value the filibuster more than the human lives lost in mass shootings. Remember the Manchin-Toomey fiasco in 2013? Manchin told us he could pass a modest gun control measure in the Senate. He failed. He’s likely to make the same mistake again in 2021.

We’re all trapped on a stationary bike, peddling fast but getting nowhere in a hurry.

I don’t mean to trivialize mass shootings by using a movie analogy, but we’re stuck in a post-mayhem stupid loop. It keeps repeating over and over again just like in Groundhog Day. We’re all Bill Murray.

I love Bill Murray, but I want to escape the endless time loop of mass shootings. The time to wake up from this nightmare is now: the NRA is enfeebled by scandal and bankruptcy. President Biden understands this issue and is prepared to act. It’s time for the United Senate to change the plot by acting. I’m tired of quoting Pink Floyd songs and being Bill Murray.

Stop the madness.

Today on Tommy T’s Obsession with the Freeperati – Unmasked Marauder edition

Welp – this “cancel culture” thing has gotten completely out of hand.

Now, the masked  unmasked marauder has decided to cancel anyone who won’t serve him because he could possibly (and probably, given his refusal to wear a mask) blow his COVID cooties all over the BBQ joint.

Told to wear a mask at Kansas City area BBQ restaurant, man in MAGA hat flashes a gun

Arlo Kinsey was working behind the carryout counter at RJ’s Bob-Be-Que Shack in Mission last week when a middle-aged man dressed in a red Make America Great Again hat — and no mask — walked through the door.

“I asked him if he could wear a mask, since it’s what Gov. Kelly told us to do,” said Kinsey, 18, who was working shifts at the barbecue joint this summer before heading off to college. He had dealt with a handful of customers who refused to wear masks inside the restaurant despite the statewide mandate — but none like this, he said.

The man said he had an exemption to the mask order: He then lifted up his shirt, revealing a gun in a holster on his hip.

1 posted on 7/13/2020, 10:09:44 PM by yesthatjallen

(here’s an unsolicited dick pic of the asshole brandishing his manhood – the tan patch on his left side is the inside of his jacket where he’s pulling it back)

MAGAnutBrandishing

Freepers? How say ye?

To: yesthatjallen

 

I’m not fan of wearing masks, but their business, their rules. If you don’t want to follow a businesses rules, then don’t patronize it. But don’t be an ass.

2 posted on 7/13/2020, 10:13:42 PM by bigdaddy45

No, you dickless wonder – being an ass is unscrewing the top of the saltshaker, or refusing to leave a tip.
Brandishing a handgun to someone inside their business is a felony.
To: yesthatjallen

 

This is not a good story… if it is actually true.

3 posted on 7/13/2020, 10:15:09 PM by Sicon (“All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.” – G. Orwell)

…says the nitwit too lazy to click on the link to watch the security cam footage…

To: yesthatjallen
jesus. someone lock that guy in a closet until mid-November.

4 posted on 7/13/2020, 10:18:01 PM by JohnBrowdie

Oh, if they catch the moron, he’s liable to be in the closet until well after November. Nice to see you acknowledge that he’s a Trump-humper, though. Polls making you a little nervous?
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Also, felons can’t vote.
To: yesthatjallen

 

sounds like a “false flag” by to me…

5 posted on 7/13/2020, 10:20:39 PM by samkatz

Bite to me.
To: yesthatjallen

You know folks, we’re the front lines of Conservatism, andall eyes are on us.

Nope – just mine.

One dumb ass like this can cause negative ripples across
a wide body of the public.

Please don’t wear a MAGA and go all postal on folks. Good
grief. Do we need to tell folks that? Really?

7 posted on 7/13/2020, 10:21:35 PM by DoughtyOne (Some of the folks around these parts have been sniffing super flu.)

Looks like you do, sonny.  Looks like you do.
To: yesthatjallen

 

What he did was a felony. If true.

8 posted on 7/13/2020, 10:22:04 PM by JusPasenThru (If Biden wins he will kill Republicans.)

DuhHouse
And yet another one too lazy (or afraid) to click on the link and watch the security cam footage….

To: yesthatjallen

Showings(sic) the gun was probably not a great idea.

YaThink

Just turn around and walk out.

Makes Trump supporters look like dangerous jerks.

9 posted on 7/13/2020, 10:22:06 PM by proud American in Canada (But Gollum and the evil warlock crept up and wslipped away with her …)

It’s not a bug – it’s a feature.

Is the part not mentioned in the story that it was a BLM hat and the perp was black ?

48 posted on 7/14/2020, 12:47:12 AM by elbook

Let’s take a closer look :
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MAGAgun
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Yep.   Definitely black.
One eighth.
On his mom’s side.
To: Blue Jays

“…It was definitely a threat…”


Fake. Why were police not called? Where is the security camera footage?


About 99% of these stories are bogus with the retraction posted two weeks later in a small box on page 27 under the classifieds.
55 posted on 7/14/2020, 1:30:34 AM by Blue Jays ( Rock hard ~ Ride free)
No, that would be where they put the stories about Republicans getting caught committing voter fraud, and LBGTQ-bashers getting caught with a rent boy.
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Continue reading at the “continue reading”….

Continue reading

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Racism is for the Rich

The reddest parts of any purple state are its suburbs. Fight me. 

Suburbs, and exurbs, really. Not that there aren’t racist assholes in cities, she says, two blocks from the city that perfected redlining. But the white-flighters are something else, not just racial hatred but the very specific fear of a black invasion of “their” neighborhood.

They’ve had stories handed down to them through two generations now about the beautiful places their grandparents and great-grandparents grew up in, that were “ruined” by “those people.” That those neighborhoods were ruined by deliberate and malicious government policies to devalue the property, that greedy real estate brokers and reptilian politicians are far more to blame, will never reach the ears of someone who drove past their mother’s house and saw a black family living there now.

They see litter on the streets and instead of wondering why their litter is picked up every night and this neighborhood’s isn’t, they cluck their tongues at closed doors without any idea who’s behind them.

“It was such a beautiful place,” they’ll say, “not like now.” And hey, it’s not like they’re using the n-word, right? It’s just … implied. Until it isn’t.

Until it’s wearing a pink polo shirt and pointing a gun at people marching in the street.

It’s astonishing how little distance there is from the kind of nice-lady racism that is so confused as to why “some of them” just “let their houses go” to the wild-eyed pistol-waving Chico’s kind of day Mrs. McCloskey up there was having.

I mean people have handed down these stories like they’re a secret language, and that language is one of war: This is what happened when “blacks” “crossed the line.” We thought such-and-such street would “hold.” You want to talk about the Confederate states holding onto their lost causes; ask a white man of a certain age in Chicago after a couple of beers what parish his mother belonged to. If only “they” had stayed down south where they “belonged.”

Yes, now Donald Trump is openly stoking the kind of paranoia that leads to front-porch displays of the kind of trigger discipline that would humiliate a bachelor party at the paintball range. But who primed these people to listen? Who made that a story they would find easy to believe?

Who told them everything they had could be stolen at any moment? Did they use an example? Was it their great-aunt’s house, where once you didn’t have to lock the doors, and now you couldn’t walk down the street without getting mugged?

A.

Cuckoo Cocoon

For good or ill, the crazy has always been a part of American politics. From the Whiskey Rebellion to John Brown to the War of the Rebellion to the Mountain Meadows Massacre to the John Birch Society to the Nineties militia movement, it’s always been there. But the crazy has rarely had official sanction from a sitting president*. Of course, we never had an Oval One like President* Pennywise before.

The Kaiser of Chaos lives in a self-constructed fantasy world that makes past presidential bubbles look realistic in comparison:

In Trump’s case, it’s more like a cocoon. Insects in cocoons can and do change but Trump cannot. In his case, to borrow a phrase from Genesis, the band not the opening salvo of The Bible, it’s a cuckoo cocoon. The crazy is vacuum sealed in the Impeached Insult Comedian’s lizard brain.

Can you imagine any other Oval One demanding that a duly elected Governor give in to the demands of armed cretins?

Fuck you, Donald. There’s no reason for anyone to carry a weapon into any state capitol. It’s only okay in the cuckoo cocoon that you and your followers are trapped in. They’ll always be caterpillars, never butterflies

The crazy okayed by the Kaiser of Chaos is the logical culmination of decades of conservative ideology. In 1981, Ronald Reagan stated that “government is not the solution, it’s the problem.” In 1995, Bill Clinton caved to the 1994 mid-term results and declared “the era of big government is over.” Bill, of course, had his fingers crossed but it’s been all downhill from there.

The hatred of big guvmint has led to the crazy quilt approach the country is taking to the pandemic. Everyone is on their own. Chaos not only reigns, it rules. That’s why I call him the Kaiser of Chaos. And there are mini-Kaisers causing chaos across the land.

We shouldn’t let the libertarian right off the hook either. The Governor of Nebraska, Pete Ricketts, thinks it’s a grand idea for meat packing plants to remain open free of government interference. That sort of thinking is common among Kochified libertarians who cloak avarice and selfishness with highfalutin rhetoric about freedom. The libertarians are trapped in the cuckoo cocoon with the rest of the right.

The libertarian delusion is as old as the Republic itself. There’s a raging dispute over who first said, “the best government is that which governs least.” It doesn’t matter who coined the phrase, it’s bullshit. Small government isn’t the solution, it’s the problem. Only a New Deal-style approach can bring us back from the Second Great Depression.  It’s time to escape the cage of the cuckoo cocoon.

I added the word cage so I could give Peter Gabriel era Genesis the last word with a live medley of Cuckoo Cocoon and In The Cage. The songs are back-to-back on The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway, after all.

 

 

You Already Know Where It Goes

So here’s what’s gonna happen.

A lot of people are going to get sick. They won’t know for sure if they’re sick, because there aren’t enough tests, and nobody can afford the ones that we do have.

Because nobody will know anything for sure, and a lot of people will be sick, most businesses will stay closed. Most will be unable to pay their employees, so a lot of people are going to be sick and broke.

Sick broke people make decisions aimed at not being sick or broke no more. Not all of those decisions will be harmless to themselves or others.

The prospect of sick broke people making bad decisions will freak a lot of upper class people out.

Those people will call their suburban police departments, which in case you haven’t noticed are strapped for war every second of the day even though their biggest call in a month is barely a moving violation. Those police departments will respond to every shoplifter like they’re John Dillinger and things will start getting out of hand.

A crime that would barely make a blip in a weekly newspaper’s police blotter will get blown up by the Rush/Fox/morning news industrial complex until I start getting texts from out-of-town relatives who already think living anywhere with two stoplights is asking to be robbed and murdered. Like six guys will knock over a liquor store and ordinarily that’s Thursday, but before the week is out your dad will have sixteen emails from the NRA all saying some variation on “DO YOU WANT YOUR WHITE WOMEN RAPED? CLICK HERE TO ANSWER NO AND GET A FREE T-SHIRT AND A GRENADE LAUNCHER.”

The same types of guys who were dragging their guns around the Virginia statehouse a month ago will be spray-painting LOOTERS WILL BE SHOT ON SIGHT on their garages and then the politicians will start in with JUST ASKING QUESTIONS or some such. Those questions will not be about why people are sick and broke, by the way. The questions will be about how violent white people should get right now, and how few consequences they can possibly face for said violence.

I don’t know where we go after that.

A.

Guest Post: Lobby Day; A Peaceful, Queasy Feeling

My old friend Parenthetical grew up in the Commonwealth of Virginia. He currently resides in Charlottesville. In 2017, he wrote a guest post about the prelude to the Charlottesville white supremacist riot: Lost Cause Fest, Virginia Style.

The punny title for this post was his idea, I didn’t force it on him. I suspect, however, that he was pandering to me. If so, it worked,

Here are his thoughts about the gun nut non-riot in Richmond on MLK Day:

You knew this Richmond Gunpalooza was going to be big after Governor Northam told the press that he saw “no reason why on the street today a citizen should be carrying loaded weapons.”

I’m sorry, I’m being told that was Governor Ronald Reagan upon signing 1967’s Mulford Act prohibiting open carry in California, enacted in direct response to the Black Panthers’ armed visit to the state’s capitol.

As for Virginia’s own Locked n’ Loaded LinkedIn event, certain folks have been doing online victory laps on behalf of the thousands of gun enthusiasts who packed the area on Lobby Day, a traditional day for coming to speak with one’s state representatives. Compared to the Unite The Right rally three years ago, the day’s lack of homicides and beatings warrants a hearty huzzah, to be sure, but let’s put some context around this “accomplishment.”

  • The governor declared a state of emergency days in advance, due to out-of-state unwelcome “militia” members.
  • Neo-Nazis with a machine gun and reported designs on attending were arrested the week prior, and who knows what other advance intel proved fruitful.
  • State and local police coordinated well ahead of time, a lesson learned the hard way in Charlottesville.
  • Fencing went up around the Capitol, and access was controlled.
  • Streets shut down.
  • Some nearby business shut down for the day, accepting the financial hit in an abundance of caution.
  • Area residents stayed indoors, and people in other parts of town stayed away.
  • Counterprotestors largely skipped the event, zero counteraggression present.
  • Organizations who would have otherwise participated in Lobby Day exercised caution and stayed away.

At the end of the day, everyone from taxpayer-funded authorities to residents to Antifa made choices and/or absorbed expenses to keep the peace or steer clear. The result? A crowd full of tactical fashionistas had the place practically to themselves in a highly unnatural environment, and now they’re all, “HEY MY GUNZ AND PALS AND ME MADE A PEACEFUL!”

Obliviousness to privilege on Capitol Square for Dr. King’s birthday, what a thoughtful gift.

One photo captured the extremely small police presence near the rather cramped throng of protestors, and from here, that looked like the last stroke of genius in the law enforcement’s strategy: Pack them close and give them nobody to fight with, not even the police. People I know who went appeared to have a lovely time. One likened it to tailgating.

Of course, it did overshadow and undercut Lobby Day itself. Citizens had to choose ahead of time: be a part of Lobby Day sans firearm, or walk around with your favorite appendage outside of Lobby Day. The vast majority opted for the latter, wanting their outrage over gun measures to be “heard” rather than actually going in and, you know, being heard.

By the way, I know 99% of attendees consider themselves freedom-loving patriots, so I figured they’d be very supportive of my Monument Avenue compromise: Find a nice new home for Stonewall Jackson, and replace it with a new monument to Nat Turner.

If you’re into Virginians fighting for personal liberty, it doesn’t get much more Sic Semper Tyrannis than Nat Turner, right? And yet, my proposal seems to have fallen flat. Confounding.

At the end of the day, if you want to lobby, you come and lobby. If you want to protest and show strength in numbers, you protest and show strength in numbers. But when a vastly white, vastly male crowd of over 20,000 elects instead to convene downtown with firearms and all the combat trimmings including flags of varying insurrectionist relevance, a lot of them are trying to do something else.

These people who want personal judgment to replace public policy in all aspects of firearms ownership and usage are the same people who post Civil War 2.0 videos to their social media.

Who believe Alex Jones.

Who shared reports that busloads of false flaggers have rolled into town to make trouble and fool the lamestream media.

Who told me that Mike Bloomberg and George Soros had bought up all the public parking.

Who think the world is neatly divided into fixed pools of Law-Abiding Citizens and Criminals.

Who look up and down Monument Avenue and see forefathers’ encouragement instead of a lost cause.

(Is it just me, or are some folks only going to let go of the last Civil War if they get another one to grab onto?)

I’m sure several of the day’s attendees have a somewhat better grip on reality, but Virginia is increasingly not interested in catering to that mindset, as it demonstrated at the polls. Have fun at the range and in the woods, guys. Ignore the data about firearms in the house, because of course it won’t happen to you. Posture and get your gear on all you want. But maybe next year, leave Lobby Day for the people who actually want to lobby. And if you’re chafing at the prospect of background checks and other popular measures so badly that it just might spread to your trigger finger at the wrong time, consider an ointment.

Guns at the Statehouse

One of my earliest memories is of a dead deer.

I think it was a deer. Might have been an elk.

Anyway, big dead animal. Hanging suspended from the garage ceiling, its blood draining into a bucket below.

Smelled pretty bad. My mom wasn’t thrilled. That was the spot, after all, where she was supposed to park her car, and my dad killed this critter, dragged it home, and was now preparing it to be made into sausages. Stew meat. Salami.

Plus a taxidermy head, to be mounted on the wall in the living room.

Dad had bagged this thing and we were gonna use every inch of it, because that’s what you do with something you kill. You eat it, or wear it, but you sure as hell don’t waste it. You respect it, and the process by which it arrived in your driveway, your freezer, your belly. Somebody earned that.

I thought about that deer watching hundreds of assclowns parade around downtown Richmond, VA comparing extremely mild firearms regulations to Jim Crow laws, heaving their camo-coated butts up and down the streets in front of the statehouse wearing riot shields against, I dunno, a run on the Applebees salad bar or something.

It was the kind of protest where the organizers had to beg people not to wear Nazi shit or carry Confederate flags, lest someone come to the conclusion that a big group of pasty pantloads in MAGA paraphernalia was in some way racist. Some people, of course, brought Confederate stuff anyway. Others just went the “racially tinged” route and stuck to teabagging.

And they’re all so exhausting. These fucking toolsheds, pointing loaded weapons in the air and at each other, with the trigger discipline of 8-year-olds in a video arcade, in their Kevlar vests with the plates all removed so they could stuff snacks and water bottles in the pockets. The tactical vests on the service dogs. The night vision goggles in broad daylight. The way the ammo belts stretched and strained.

I saw a lot of people calling this stuff cosplay. Calling this international exhibition of braggadocio and dumbassery cosplay is insulting to cosplayers, who generally a) care about the accuracy of their costumes b) wear custom gear that fits them c) make sure their weapons are clean.

Then there was all the yelling about tyranny. Just fucking … just stop. The American Revolution was not a reaction to wife-beaters being denied their fourth Glock. Crispus Attucks and co. did not die so that you could open fire on the wicker reindeer in the Christmas section at Menards.

Those guys were fighting the entire British Army with four sticks and a bucket of snowballs, you don’t get to put on their clothes, not when you duck and cover every time somebody in your cube farm makes microwave popcorn. Samuel Maverick called, and he said your mom has musket balls.

But back to the dead deer at the beginning of this post.

You see, back when I was growing up, the guys who went hunting and ate what they killed mocked the kind of urban cowboys whose trophies all had powder burns. Buy some deer meat from a guy, that’s fine, but sit in a tree drinking beer all day waiting for a buck to wander underneath so you can shoot down on it, or worse, go to a “preserve” where you can kill it in a cage, like screw you, pal. Work for your supper.

Hunting for food and shooting for sport were presumed to be actual pursuits, engaged in deliberately. You go to the range or some deserted area to practice. You have a rifle for deer, handgun for bear or mountain lion when you’re camping. You lock them up away from your kids. You sure as shit don’t keep them loaded. And you don’t jaw on all day in public about what guns you have and where. That’s a good way to get robbed, or worse.

At some point in the past 30 years these guys who knew how to handle their weapons made common cause with a whole bunch of other people, who were loud and scared and stupid. The latter group weren’t into shooting for food or for fun. They were into it because it was life and death, them or the brown hordes, and in order not to die, they had to arm themselves however they saw fit. As was their inalienable right.

When people who actually did deal in life and death, like officers of the law or members of the military, pointed out that their weapons were subject to processes and procedures, the people who saw a buck to be made lobbying legislators ginned up the usual phony “savages coming to steal your white women and children” nonsense and suddenly everyone who wasn’t a member of the NRA was a wine-sipping communist puss.

That we can’t see that it was about money, that people benefited from this fear and rage and it sure as shit wasn’t the ordinary hunters and sportsmen, will never fail to make me crazy. As much as I make fun of those guys up there, those angry morons, they’re only buying the bullshit. The NRA and gun manufacturers and the GOP are shoveling it, and they don’t even have the tiny shriveled sack to stand on the street for it.

They leave that to the men and women who, really, should be home with their kill, making salami.

A.

Screw Your Smarter-Than-Thou Cynicism and Your Nihilism and Your Fear

How fucking dare you: 

Federal agencies will receive $25 million from Congress to study gun violence in a government spending deal reached by House and Senate negotiators — a major win for Democrats who have long pushed for dedicated funding to research the issue, a source told The Hill.

“Democrats have broken the ban on funding for the first time in decades,” the source said.

The deal includes $12.5 million each for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and National Institutes of Health to study gun violence and ways to prevent it.

It’s the first time in more than 20 years that Congress has appropriated money for gun violence research.

How dare you mark the anniversary of Sandy Hook, as so many people did last week, by posting variations on this stupid garbage trash?

How dare you yell at “Congress” to act when what you need is Republicans to act?

I am so sick of hearing that there’s no difference between the parties, that they’re both beholden to the same people, that it’s all corporatist money and control and so we might as well elect a fascist to teach the normies to suffer. I am so sick of people shrugging off this, that or the other reports of shootings and tragedies with “well yeah, what do you expect,” as if humans didn’t design this system and are helpless to change it.

THIS IS WHAT THEY WANT. They want us to think change is impossible. They want us not to notice it’s happening every single day, all around us, as one person by one person decides they’ve had enough. Seven years ago Moms Demand was a frickin’ Facebook group. How dare you tell them it’s over? If they’re not tired ain’t nobody gets to be tired.

Twenty-five million is nothing, of course. It should be the size of the budget of the U.S. military or at least what we spend keeping Trump and his grifter family safe; it should be whatever the doctors say they need. But it’s not nothing and it’s not the end and you have to wedge a crowbar in the door before you can bust it open.

This happened because people elected Democrats. Not just leftists; boring old milquetoast Joe-Biden-esque people who aren’t tough enough on the banks and say stupid shit on the regular, who give Trump more judges than he deserves and disappoint us every single day. This happened because people voted in people with a basic desire to KEEP OUR CHILDREN ALIVE so how dare you say there’s no difference?

There are real differences, and they matter, and they’re going to matter more as this year drags on, and I just don’t want to hear it, about your feelings, when this is what’s on the table. Stop being so scared and stop thinking it masks the fear, your “it’s over, there’s no point” bullshit.

I get you say that kind of thing so you don’t have to fight. I deeply, deeply get it, and I’m here to tell you that it doesn’t MATTER. You’re dead at the end of this either way, why do you think proving your intelligence and superiority over your fellow live-children enthusiasts are important? Get the fuck out there and embarrass yourself and invest in people who aren’t everything you want, because this is what can happen.

Twenty years, and then a break. How dare you count this out.

A.

Don’t Say It’s Over

A reminder that your nihilism is embarrassing: 

The activists’ progress was often slow. The group launched a campaign against Kroger and Walmart in 2014; one ad ran in national newspapers and on billboards in Kroger’s home city of Cincinnati showing a girl holding an ice-cream cone in a Kroger store next to a man with a rifle, pointing out that only the girl was violating the store’s policy. They gathered hundreds of thousands of signatures on petitions. But both stores were unwilling to change. “I went and met with their executives in 2015,” says Watts. “And it was very clear that they would not consider changing their policy. But we just kept the pressure on. And then after the mass shooting at a Walmart in El Paso, we began conversations again with Walmart executives and gave them counsel on policies that would make their store safer.” After Walmart announced its new policy—including, beyond the new open-carry policy, a plan to stop selling ammunition—the group pivoted to pressure Kroger, which made its announcement the next day.

This is how work gets done. I get that it’s not as Capra-film inspiring as someone rising on the Senate floor and saying I HAVE HEREBY CHANGED MY MIND and then we all applaud and cry and the law is changed and no one dies anymore, but this is how the work gets done. In living rooms. In grocery stores. Day after grinding day.

It’s slow and it’s miserable and you lose more often than you win and you risk looking just RIDICULOUS, but if you don’t care how much of a ridiculous miserable loser you are, if you’re not afraid of how long it’ll take, if you see the passage of time not as proof that you’ve lost but as a record of how long you stayed standing, you will change the goddamn ridiculous miserable motherfucking loser WORLD.

What has happened with Moms Demand and Everytown is what happens when you just stop believing that despair is the only option, when you stop expecting the avalanche and start chucking rocks. It’s so EASY to tune out the horrors of the world. It’s so EASY, most of the time, to convince yourself to do nothing because there’s nothing you can do.

But then comes the hour between 3 a.m. and 4 a.m. When you can’t sleep, and you realize that none of us get out of this alive, that none of us are in this for peace, that “there was nothing I could do” isn’t an answer but an excuse and not a good one, that you are literally presented with a hundred thousand things a day that are chances and if you pass them by you are doing something, and that something isn’t good. When that hour comes, you’ve got to answer for what you’ve done with every minute, and let’s be honest, most of us can’t.

You can face that and dig even deeper into your despair or you can pick up an axe and get to work. Or you can send out that horrible tweet again about how Sandy Hook was the end. I’m not telling you how to live your life, but these women are making it harder to lie to yourself that nothing will change and that’s really quite something, now isn’t it.

A.

Garry Wills On The Rights Of Guns

Garry Wills is one of the smartest people and best writers in the country. He’s spent a great deal of time pondering the role of guns in American culture. He nails it in this piece for the New York Review Of Books:

“Gun rights,” as used by devotees of an absolutist Second Amendment, means their right to own guns. But as used in real American life these days (or real American deaths), it means the rights of guns. Guns themselves possess even more rights than persons do.

<SNIP>

Guns’ exemption from common-sense legislation guarantees them not only rights, but also rites. Guns are sacred objects. They should not even be insulted, which is blasphemy. They are “the American way.” They are more than things, more even than persons. They are an unstoppable force, a god. They are, indeed, Our Moloch.

Those are the first and last paragraphs in Wills’ recent piece, The Rights Of Gun. How right is he? Totally. The NRA has become a cult whose second amendment absolutism verges on idolatry. A good example is the fetish some gun worshipers have for strapping on their weapons to go shopping. Who the hell needs a long gun whilst thumping melons at Wal-Mart? Mercifully, they’ve banned such performative rituals and other retailers have followed suit.

I know many gun owners; none of whom feels the need to strut about in public with their weapons. Some hunt, others like to target shoot but they all lock their guns up. OTOH, at an estranged friend’s house, I once sat on the couch and felt something beneath me: a package of bullets. I think he was just a rotten housekeeper but I was not amused.

I’ve never owned a gun. They were verboten in my house. My father was a veteran but he disliked guns. Since he was an interpreter, I doubt if he ever shot anyone but he knew what pistols are for: to kill people. And rifles are for hunting, not grocery shopping. Assault weapons are for the military, not civilians.

I admit to being mystified by the religious fervor exuded by the more extreme gun worshipers. Perhaps it’s a result of having the man who played Moses, Charlton Heston, as NRA president for five years. Whatever it is, it’s creepy and the country is overdue for some sensible gun control measures. It’s time for people to have rights, not guns.

Today on Tommy T’s Obsession with the Freeperati – random hysteria edition

Let’s go back and look at an older thread, shall we?

For anyone wondering what the Freeper reaction to the shooting massacre du jour was – I present – Code Toady!

Active shooter reported in Odessa, Texas
Newswest 9 ^ | August 31, 2019 | Victor Blanco

Posted on 8/31/2019, 4:50:31 PM by LUV W

ODESSA, Texas — UPDATE: ACTIVE SHOOTER REPORTED STAY INDOORS FOR BOTH cities

Police confirm a second shooter is in the areas driving a stolen mail van.

Officials are responding to an active shooter in Odessa.

According to the Department of Public Safety, the shooter is in all Gold Passenger car armed with a rifle and headed from Odessa to Midland.

Several people [now reporting 30 shot in Midland and Odessa] have been injured including police and civilians.

1 posted on 8/31/2019, 4:50:31 PM by LUV W
Before we get started, I’d like to compliment long-standing Freeper LUV_W for not changing his/her handle.
Obviously crafted from ancient hand-tooled artisanal stupid, this tribute to once hero / now despised GOP-e icon Dubya shows long-time dedication, and short-term memory loss.
To: maxwellsmart_agent

Where are armed citizens to defend themselves?

8 posted on 8/31/2019, 5:01:16 PM by Reno89519 (No Amnesty! No Catch-and-Release! Just Say No to All Illegal Aliens! Arrest & Deport!)

From someone driving down the highway blasting away with a long gun?  Um – yeah.
To: LUV W

My local news is quoting the New York Times about 2 deaths…they are clueless!

26 posted on 8/31/2019, 5:20:10 PM by KittenClaws (“There is no 1502 Johnson” ~ Joan Hamilton)

How DARE they?? There will be a nasty letter about this tomorrow in the New York………….hmmm.
To: LUV W; null and void
Just in time for the September reconvening of the House and Senate!

Imagine that coincidence!

52 posted on 8/31/2019, 5:39:28 PM by Lazamataz (We can be called a racist and we’ll just smile. Because we don’t care.)

DAMN those deep state congresscritters!!  They’re all in cahoots!
To: LUV W

I know I don’t get out enough, but why do I never get an active shooter loose in my area?

58 posted on 8/31/2019, 5:42:29 PM by Trailerpark Badass (There should be a whole lot more going no than throwing bleach, said one woman.)

Lucky at cards, unlucky at love?
.
“KittenClaws” takes exception to “Trailerpark Badass”s flippancy :
To: Trailerpark Badass

This is the last time I report on local happenings. I’m live in Odessa…and you bunch of chit chats don’t give a crap.

59 posted on 8/31/2019, 5:44:38 PM by KittenClaws (“There is no 1502 Johnson” ~ Joan Hamilton)

This diverts the discussion a tad :
To: KittenClaws

FR is not the friendly community you imagined it was. I know.

62 posted on 8/31/2019, 5:47:27 PM by HalfIrish

Duh.
.
And now, everyone – as promised – CODE TOADY!!
.
To: KittenClaws
“and you bunch of chit chats don’t give a crap.”

What exactly were you expecting, a bunch of caterwauling and FReepers losing their minds???

71 posted on 8/31/2019, 5:51:39 PM by CodeToad ( Hating on Trump is hating on me and Americans!)

That’s tellin’ her, by jingo!
To: CodeToad

Get Bent Toad

77 posted on 8/31/2019, 5:55:04 PM by KittenClaws (“There is no 1502 Johnson” ~ Joan Hamilton)

And – we’re off!
To: KittenClaws

It seems you are bent. Maybe you need to straighten out and stop being such an emotional liberal wanting to cry over everything and demand everyone else joins you.

80 posted on 8/31/2019, 5:56:21 PM by CodeToad ( Hating on Trump is hating on me and Americans!)

Yeah, you liberal whiner! Just because you’re in Odessa and a potential target is no reason to cry over things like mass murder and 17-month-olds getting shot in the face.
.
More below the mouldy fold…

Continue reading

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Extra! Extra! Screed all about it!

My HD65 rep Michelle Beckley (along with other Texas Democrats who were part of the Blue Wave that kicked out a crapload of right-wing nutcases from the Texas legislature in the last election)  has been pushing for gun registration/background check/red flag  legislation, but in this State, it’s an uphill battle.  My personal views?

First of all – I’m a gun owner.
.
I own a Glock G21 handgun, a single-shot .22 that
belonged to my Grandfather, and a .410 that was used
in my days as a ranch hand to dispatch armadillo, and
put rabbits, duck, and pheasant on the table.
.
I also trained with M1 Garand and the original M16
jam-o-matic in my Allen Military Academy days.
I shot marksman with the 1911 – with both hands.
So let’s just disarm (see what I did there?) the “You want to take
away all our guns because you HATE THEM” trope right now.
.
I have as much use for a modified (full-auto and burst
settings disabled) assault rifle as I do for a
flamethrower or hand grenade. And unless you are in
the military, a police SWAT team, or are planning to kill a whole
shitload of innocent people, neither do you.
.
It’s a bit like someone with a Piper Cherokee saying
that people want to take away his plane, just because
you can’t buy a non-demilled A10 Warthog.
.
Ain’t the same thing, numbnuts.
.
ShallNot
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Under My Thumbs Up

We all know that the Insult Comedian was raised by wolves. He whines endlessly about his own suffering but is incapable of even synthetic empathy. He had a helluva time at the hospital in El Paso bragging about the size of his rally 6 months ago. Then there’s this:

None of the adult victims of the Trump-inspired terrorist attack would meet with him so an orphaned baby was brought back to the hospital to pose with Trumpberius and his Slovenian Julia the Elder. Missing from the scene are his Caligula (Don Jr.) and Nero (Jared). Life once again imitates I, Claudius. The Trumps are certainly fiddling while America burns.

It’s all smiles and thumbs up from the Trumps. Worst photo-op ever.

The last word goes to the Who:

Surprised you, didn’t I? The Who covered Under My Thumb in protest when the Rolling Stones were busted in 1967.

Hey Congress, Do Something

I just: 

During the goal celebration after he scored in today’s D.C. United-Philadelphia Union match, Union midfielder Alejandro Bedoya picked up a pitch-side microphone and said into it,“Hey Congress, do something, now! End gun violence!”

“Congress” isn’t going to do shit. THE DEMOCRATS have been passing bills and urging action since THE DEMOCRATS banned assault weapons in the first goddamn place. Republicans are holding hearings about how anime porn makes you violent or something, this morning, about how mental illness is to blame, like my crazy ass can shoot you with a trigger lock on. Hey Congress. Are you kidding me.

If you want “Congress” to do something, what you really want is REPUBLICANS to do something. To pass the bills in the Senate that Dems have passed in the House. To support the prevention of gun violence through common sense shit like “let us perhaps not give you a gun if you hit your wife” and “until you can legally smoke and be drafted no ammo for you,” like really radical stuff there, chief.

I don’t want to bag on this sportsball fellow who I never heard of until this moment and don’t know at all, because what he’s saying — that “Congress” needs to act — is what he’s been told by our irresponsible, lazy, clueless, cowardly national press, led by the nose by Republican partisans and pundits. “Congress” is the problem, “government” is broken, and once more and for all the marbles BOTH SIDES ARE TO BLAME.

By refusing to name and shame Republicans for this, by perpetuating the myth that somehow our government just magically polarized its own damn self, by never once naming and shaming the assholes who are responsible for every single day of gridlock since 2010 (straining to remember who was president then, and what that might have had to do with this) they’ve made sure that while both sides are not equally at fault, they’re equally blamed.

Shit, even supposedly smart people get this wrong. Jon Stewart came and lambasted “Congress” for not protecting 9/11 first responders, as if Mitch McConnell wasn’t holding up the bill. Every goddamn totebagger on the planet, who listens to NPR and thinks Trump of course is just the worst, will still shake their head and lament the lack of civility and comity in “government” as if the Tea Party rallies never happened.

As if Sarah Palin never said Obama “palled around with terrorists.” As if those Purple Heart Band-Aids appeared by magic.

People get this wrong, and get frustrated and angry at the wrong people, because they’re never told in plain language what the holdup is or who is causing it. They’re enraged at inaction and the perception of paralysis without knowing why there’s no action, no movement. They feel powerless because they can’t exercise power without knowledge, and the information the press could be providing them about who is blocking gun law reform would give them power.

It would also upset some wingnut screamers and Very Reasonable Sensible People, which I guess is what really matters.

For God’s sake, though. Asking “Congress” to do something about this when half of Congress would love to do something about this is just enraging. Half of Congress and 2/3 of the country wants to move on this, and instead of saying, “you could if not for these six people” we’re watching TV shows about how everything is terrible but nothing can ever change.

A.