Category Archives: Twitter

The Stapling

I love old horror movies. I’ve always been a Vincent Price kinda guy, but I now find myself identifying with Boris Karloff. Here’s why:

That was probably TMI for social media but there’s never enough I for First Draft. I rarely play straight man here but am willing to do so on the Tweeter Tube. My friends may be cruel, but they’re funny. Click on this link for more merriment at my expense. My Twitter handle is Shecky, but I feel more like Rodney Dangerfield right now.

Here’s what happened. It was the stupidest accident I’ve ever had and I’m a lifelong klutz. We soaked our trash bin to remove the Debrisville Post Ida Stank from it. I flipped open the lid, then tried to lean it over to pour out the schmutz. That’s when wet grass acted as a banana peel, and I did a pratfall. My head bashed into the rim of the open bin. That’s where things got bloody.

My forehead turned into a gusher reminiscent of the scene in Giant where James Dean strikes oil on Rock Hudson’s ranch.

Since I was doing dirty work, I was wearing an old t-shirt, which I turned into a tourniquet of sorts. Still, the blood flowed like the Monty Python parody of Sam Peckinpah:

I called not Elizabeth Taylor but Dr. A who took me to an Urgent Care joint to get stapled. I already needed a tetanus shot after stepping on a roofing screw at the cemetery cleanup in honor of my late friend Will. That’s what I get for doing yard work.

I’m at the stage of life where everything reminds me of a story. This is an odd one. Long ago and far away, I worked as a paralegal on a massive anti-trust case. All the users of cement were suing all the cement companies. I was firmly on the plaintiffs’ side.

I worked on the document production at Kaiser Cement HQ in Oakland. In the pre-digital age that meant micro-filming documents. I’d sort through the paperwork and select stuff for them to shoot. It was dull, laborious work. FYI, Shapiro worked at the home office as a coder. We go back farther than either of us is willing to admit.

You’re probably wondering where this is leading. Me too.

I spent a lot of time assessing expense accounts; some valid, others dubious. There was one sales rep who used a lot of staples. I dubbed him 12-staple McGahey. I’m not quite sure if that was the name but he was a Scotsman.

I’m certainly not a Scotsman but one could call me 6-staple Adrastos right now. I cannot wait for the stapling to end and for the scabbing to commence.

A closing message in the spirit of Karloff as interpreted by Phil Hartman:

FIRE BAD!

Wet grass bad too.

The last word goes to the Staples Singers:

The Debrisville Post Ida Stank Blues

The 700 block of Valence St.

It’s been 15 days since Hurricane Ida slammed into Southeast Louisiana, but it remains the focus of my attention; such as it is. I’m still tired, fatigued, and exhausted. The storm is much less serious for New Orleans than Katrina, but I’m sixteen years older. It’s less clear if I’m wiser for the extra years and pounds. So it goes.

My focus has been hyper local since Ida struck.  I haven’t been following the national political news as closely as usual. I know that the MSM is still wrong about Afghanistan and that Joe Manchin is still an attention whore and drama queen. I’ll get back up to snuff soon enough but I haven’t missed pondering the posturing of the Sinematic senator or the Turtle’s machinations.

Many of us had to throw food away because of the epic loss of power. That, in turn, resulted in the Debrisville Post Ida Stank. Whether or not your trash has been collected or not, the stench is there. It’s giving us Katrina veterans flashbacks to the stinky fridges that dotted our cityscape in 2005 such as this one:

Cajun Tomb, 2005.

This Zappa song says it all:

In addition to the stank of ’05, the spirit of ’05 is alive and well. My do-gooder friend Carolyn is busy helping people. Not bad for a former teevee news reporter whose Twitter handle is @NewsCarolyn. She recently bought a house in St. Bernard Parish aka Da Parish. I’ve been trying to get her to change her handle to @YatCarolyn to no avail. If you’re wondering what a Yat is click here.

One thing that’s entirely different from 2005 is the presence of social media. I used Twitter as a club with which to beat the local utility, Entergy. They’re the cartoon villain of this crisis. I enlisted the help of councilmembers Joe Giarusso and Jay Banks in my dispute with Entergy over their sloppy work in my hood. Thanks, gentlemen.

The featured image is the before picture of the 700 block of Valence Street, here’s an after picture:

It looks better now but I wanted to stick it to Entergy.

The drowned city of 2005 was a man-made event, which is why we call it the Federal Flood. Hurricane Ida was a wind-driven event that’s an example of Mother Nature at her bitchiest. New Orleans is fairly hard hit BUT the epicenter was in St. John, Lafourche, and Terrebonne parishes.

A reminder that First Draft is supporting the Bayou Fund in its effort to help the people of Terrebonne Parish. Click here if you too believe that Our Fate Is Your Fate

The people of Southeast Louisiana got a break from our grim current reality by watching our beloved New Orleans Saints obliterate the Green Bay Packers 38-3. Sorry Athenae. Scout, and Doc.

Jeopardy host wannabe Aaron Rodgers played an abysmal game. He looked rustier than the Entergy towers that fell during Ida. I had a bit of fun at his expense after he threw some interceptions:

No love for the second tweet? People have already forgotten Mike Richards pulling a Dick Cheney and selecting himself as Alex Trebek’s successor. The malakatude, it burns.

Speaking of Jeopardy and Da Parish this quote comes from a 2017 post entitled First Draft Potpourri For $400, Alex:

Many New Orleans eateries used to carry an item called the “wop salad.” I took the pulse of my community and found only one place in the metro area that still calls it that. It’s Rocky and Carlo’s in Chalmette. It’s in St. Bernard Parish which once had a councilman named Joey DiFatta. That’s apropos of nothing but I miss him. It’s doubtful that the Chalmatians feel the same way.

I realize that quote is of marginal relevance, but this is a potpourri post in malodorous drag. I usually loathe the smell of potpourri, but it beats the hell out of the Debrisville Post Ida Stank. Ugh just ugh.

Since I mentioned Valence Street and the bayou, the last word goes to my former 13th Ward homies, the Neville Brothers:

Righteous Indigination

I’ve been angry all week. It’s not the ranting, raving, and yelling kind of anger. It’s more of a slow burn over the egregious stupidity and malakatude in the news. I dislike feeling this angry, I prefer to be detached from the news of the day, ice it down with sarcasm, and dismiss it with mockery. I used to compare my style with Athenae’s by calling her fire and me ice. I’m feeling fiery this week, but at least it’s with righteous indignation.

I remain vexed and worse by the MSM coverage of Afghanistan:

In its desperation to nail Biden, the DC MSM has neglected to mention the creeps who got us into the Afghan mess:

Cable news is full of former Bush officials attacking the withdrawal. The worst are the Never Trumpers who are showing their true colors by waving their neo-con freak flags. Imagine if Biden had stayed with the small force bequeathed to him by Trump. The Taliban was still likely to make their move and 2,500 soldiers could not have defeated them. That would have led to a genuine bloodbath.

Speaking of former President* Pennywise, there’s a conspiracy theory that he set a trap for Biden with last year’s deal with the Taliban. While it may have turned into a trap, I’m skeptical that it was planned. For one thing, Trump never looks more than a week down the road. For another, he expected to win the election and still believes he did. I think he could pass a polygraph test about the “rigged election.” Believe me.

One more tweet from someone else on how Democrats *should* be reacting:

I for one refuse to give an inch and be reasonable. Any withdrawal was going to be messy. It’s what happens when you lose a war.

Stick to your guns, Mr. President. The war was wrong to begin with. It’s time for it to end.

Also inspiring my righteous indignation are the Covid deniers and mask warriors. Anyone surprised?

Freedom, man.

Yesterday, a friend reported about going to his local CVS. It was jam packed with people buying a new home COVID test in order to comply with the city’s vaccination/test mandate. The tests are five bucks a pop and only valid for 72 hours. It would be much easier and cheaper to get jabbed but that would violate their rights or some such shit.

Freedom, man.

I wrote about wingnut preacher Tony Spell for Bayou Brief last year. He flooded a state education board meeting with his unmasked parishioners forcing them to stop debating whether or not school kids should mask up. Governor Edwards thinks so and so do all rational people. Freedom. man.

We’re all sick and tired of being sick and tired of the anti-mask and anti-vaxx crowd. The burden of everything COVID related is being placed on those of us doing the right thing. I hate wearing a mask, but I do it. Adults do things they don’t like because they’re the right thing to do. Something the Covid deniers will never understand. Hence my righteous indignation.

Freedom, man.

The last word goes to Ron Sexsmith with a song whose title is a play on the word indignation.

The Amateur Lawyers Are Killing Me

I don’t mean the killing me bit literally. It’s a vivid image that I’ve used countless times on Twitter. It’s also why I used the Hamilton Burger-Perry Mason featured image. Now that I think of it, fictional lawyers know more than amateur attorneys. The amateur ones are a Raymond Burr in my saddle…

I nearly used this title when I wrote The Law Is Slow, but I thought that title brought more light than heat. I’m big on bringing light when so many others only bring heat. It’s the curse of our age.

The latest know-nothing legal Tweet comes from former Tea Party dude turned Never-Trumper, the Other Joe Walsh.

I could just leave it there, but I feel like expounding. It’s what pundits do.

One of the most important recent legal developments took place a few weeks ago. It’s when DOJ announced that Trump regime officials could NOT invoke executive privilege. I celebrated it in a Not Everything Sucks post, but it was largely ignored by those who prefer drama to substance. That includes most of the MSM who miss the constant drama and leaks from the previous administration.

I think First Draft newbie Cassandra nailed it as a part of last night’s Other Joe Walsh conversation:

BTW, if you don’t follow Cassandra on Twitter please do so.  I’m uncertain if she’ll sing any strange opera, but she’s insightful and fierce as well as operatic. As long as it’s not Klingon opera, I can handle it.

Back to recent legal developments. Former acting Attorney General Rosen testified because of DOJ’s move on executive privilege. I hope nobody thinks that Bill Barr’s former deputy did this out of the goodness of his heart.  He’s hoping to avoid prosecution and/or disbarment. Besides, coup plotting was a bridge too far for both Rosen and Barr. I just said something nice about Bill Barr. There’s a first time for everything.

There’s been a lot of talk about the House Select Committee, but Dick Durbin the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee is determined to get to the bottom of the intrigue at DOJ.

Josh Marshall nails the Durbin angle:

The Senate Judiciary Committee, under Chair Dick Durbin (D-IL), appears to be doing most of its work in private, rather than in set-piece hearings. Things appear to have kicked into higher gear after Attorney General Merrick Garland allowed former Trump-era DOJ officials to testify about what is now emerging as a fairly elaborate coup plot hatched in the waning months of the Trump administration. Judiciary committee investigators jumped at the chance and some who were involved in the plot – or at least were witnesses to the plot – have jumped themselves … to testify. Rosen apparently was in a bit of a rush to testify – once Garland gave the go-ahead – before anyone on the Trump side could get into court to try to stop him. The testimony was also conducted out of the press spotlight so it would be done before anyone who might want to block it knew.

That’s how investigations should be handled. It’s best to sneak up on suspected criminals before pouncing, especially when they’re former presidents*. One reason the Mueller Probe was a disappointment was that Team Trump saw it coming and mounted a concerted albeit mendacious counterattack.

All of these factors lead me to believe that there *is* a current investigation at DOJ. I realize the amateur lawyers don’t think so because they prefer to wallow in their “Merrick Garland sucks” narrative. Repeat after me: The law is slow.

Former US Attorneys Barbara McQuaid and Joyce Vance collaborated with Larry Tribe on a roadmap for a Trump investigation. When I saw Joyce discuss the piece on MSNBC, she said that she thought an investigation was underway. She added that she too preferred to investigate behind closed doors when she was a US Attorney. Always trust a cat person:

Another way in which the amateur lawyers are killing me is this: the incessant chants for Trump to be jailed immediately. While I’m in favor of prosecuting Trump, in America, we don’t just lock people up before filing charges. That’s what the Impeached Insult Comedian wanted to do to his enemies. It’s company that I don’t want to keep.

Even if Trump is indicted and convicted, he can still run for federal office unless the GOP changes its nominating rules. Anyone think that’s even remotely possible?

Here’s how I described the run from jail possibility in an earlier post, The Ghost Of Roy Cohn:

… a reminder that even if Donald Trump is convicted of a crime, he can still run for office from prison. Eugene V. Debs received 913, 664 votes while languishing in federal prison in 1920. Debs was a political prisoner locked up for his anti-war views. Trump is, of course, a criminal who deserves everything the justice system can throw at him.

The amateur lawyers of the MSM and Twitter need to learn patience. The law is slow, it doesn’t work as fast as Twitter, nor should it. We need to get this right, not fast.

The last word is an ironic one. It goes to the Real Joe Walsh with a song he wrote with Glenn Frey and Don Henley:

Book Review: My Father When Young

This Tisserand tome was my birthday present from Dr. A. Thanks, babe.

Michael Tisserand is the author of The Kingdom Of Zydeco, Sugarcane Alley, and Krazy: George Herriman In Black and White as well as a charter member of the NOLA Twitter Pun Community. He’s better known at First Draft as the Parade Route Book Signer. I might as well share the historic Twitter exchange:

Sometimes Twitter can be fun.

Michael’s latest book is a collaboration with his late father Jerry Tisserand. An alternate title for My Father When Young could be What I Did During The Lockdown.

After his father’s funeral in 2008, Michael brought a bunch of boxes home to New Orleans, which he didn’t open until the pandemic. One box contained a treasure trove of slides:

“I pulled a few slides at random and held them to the light. Then a few more. At first, I didn’t understand what I was seeing. Then I realized: the photos had been taken by someone I never knew—my father when young.”

Michael had no idea that Jerry’s hobby had been photography. Tisserand the Elder stopped snapping pictures when he became a family man. Not only was Jerry a photography buff, he had an uncanny eye for a compelling image.

I recall when Michael first started posting his father’s pictures on his Facebook feed. I believe my initial reaction was: Damn, these are good. Others encouraged him to do something special with his father’s treasure trove. A book was born.

The most startling revelation to the son was that the father had visited New Orleans during Carnival 1959. Jerry’s pictures of the French Quarter on that long ago Mardi Gras day document a lost world. He also inadvertently stumbled into members of one of the first gay carnival krewes, Yuga. Jerry’s pictures of gay Mardi Gras don’t judge, they document. That’s the essence of good street photography.

The book is divided into three parts. The first, Taking Leave features pictures taken when Jerry was in the Army and stationed in Europe. My favorite European snapshot was taken in Barcelona and is called Children and Pigeons. Its centerpiece is a toddler dressed in a white church dress. I hate pigeons but I love this picture.

The second part of My Father When Young documents Jerry Tisserand’s return home to Evansville Indiana, which he called E-Town. I have conjoined favorites: pictures called Lighter and Smoke. They depict some Hoosier ladies lighting up cigars. I’m not a fan of cigar smoke but I am a fan of these images. They remind me of this Cole Porter song:

Anything Goes fits the third part of My Father When Young as well. I mentioned Jerry Tisserand’s Mardi Gras trip earlier. It’s the grand finale of the book in a segment named for a Professor Longhair song: Go To The Mardi Gras.

My favorite Mardi Gras photo is called Searching For A Zulu Coconut. In part, because it shows how much smaller Zulu’s floats were in 1959. The guy begging for what remains Zulu’s signature throw isn’t stretching or jumping, he’s hoping to be handed a prized coconut. I like smaller-scale Carnival. It’s one reason I’m in Krewe du Vieux.

My Father When Young is a work of love. Michael’s introduction tells the story of the father he knew and the gifted photographer he discovered. That makes Michael a lucky man. I’ve had friends who learned less salubrious things when they went through their parents’ possessions. Instead, Michael learned that, for a brief moment, his father was the Robert Frank of E-Town.

I mentioned that My Father When Young was a birthday present from Dr. A. That led to another exchange with the author:

He also threatened to make me recreate the book cover when it’s re-autographed. I couldn’t do a headstand when I was young and thin let alone now. Never gonna happen, my friend.

It’s time to grade Michael’s lockdown homework. I give My Father When Young 4 stars and an Adrastos Grade of A. Well done, sir.

You’re probably expecting the last word to go to Ringo Starr with George Harrison’s Photograph. I like to keep my readers off balance, so the last word goes to Gary Louris with the opening track of his new album, Jump For Joy. Its alternate title could be: What I Did During The Lockdown. Well done, sir.

Who Hired The Hitman?

I usually hate Congressional hearings. The members talk too much. Most of them have no idea how to pose or frame a question. The first day of the House Dipshit Insurrection Select Committee hearings was different: solemn, dignified, and focused.

Speaker Pelosi should thank feckless House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy for boycotting the committee. There are no wingnuts determined to speak over others and put on a show for the cameras. The committee is small: only 9 members. The two Republicans are willing to face the scorn of their idiot leader who denounced them as Pelosi Republicans. Nobody cares what KMac thinks. He maneuvered himself into oblivion last week.

The four police officers who testified were great witnesses and deserve a shout-out: Aquillo Gonnell, Michael Fanone, Daniel Hodges, and Harry Dunn. They epitomize the sort of people who *should* be in law enforcement. During the Dipshit Insurrection, they protected and served. As Adam Kinzinger said, “You guys won. You guys held.”

They were all impressive, but Capitol copper Harry Dunn stood out: both literally and figuratively. Dunn is a big dude. He’s 6’7″ and built like an old school NBA power forward such as the late Wes Unseld who played his entire career for the Baltimore/Capitol/Washington Bullets.

Officer Dunn was denounced before the hearing by that entitled little shit Tucker Carlson as “an angry left-wing activist.”

Harry Dunn *is* angry and with good reason:

Dunn, a 13-year-veteran of the force, testified that as rioters were nearing the a room directly off the House floor, they shouted about having been invited by Trump to “stop the steal” — prevent the congressional affirmation of Joe Biden’s victory. He said those rioters said “nobody voted” for Biden.

“I’m a law enforcement officer, and I do my best to keep politics out of my job, but in this circumstance, I responded: ‘Well, I voted for Joe Biden. Does my vote not count? Am I nobody?'” said Dunn, who is Black. “That prompted a torrent of racial epithets. One woman in a pink MAGA shirt yelled: ‘Did you hear that, guys? This n—– voted for Joe Biden.’ Then the crowd, perhaps around 20 people, joined in screaming, ‘Booo, f—— n—–.’

“No one had ever, ever called me a n—– while wearing the uniform of a Capitol Police officer,” Dunn continued, adding that after the riot he heard from other Black officers who faced racial abuse from the mob. “One officer told me he had never, in his 40 years of life, had been called a n—– to his face, and that streak ended on January 6th. Yet another Black officer later told me he had been confronted by insurrectionists in the Capitol who told him to ‘put your gun down, and we’ll show you what kind of n—– you really are.'”

The Trump mob showed what kind of cowards they are. There’s safety in numbers. None of them would have dared to abuse Harry Dunn one-on-one.

The sub-text of the hearing was ingratitude. The ingratitude of Republican lawmakers whose lives were saved by the cops who risked their own lives to protect them. The Trumpers are lionizing Ashli Babbitt and calling her fellow rioters political prisoners. I know what to call them: Terrorists.

Congressional loons Matt Gaetz, Marjorie Taylor Greene, Paul Gosar, and Louis Gohmert Piles (hereinafter the Four Gs) showed what they were made of yesterday. They staged a “protest” outside the Justice Department. They demanded the release of insurrectionists who they claim are political prisoners. So the QAnon Shaman is the new Andrey Sakharov? Who knew?

It was a disgusting display of cosplay courage: they were run off by a guy with a whistle. I am not making this up. Here’s the proof:

One more note, make that Tweet, about the freak show surrounding yesterday’s hearing:

Holy Cosplay Tough Guy, Batman.

Back to the main event: the hearing.

The officers made it clear that they want those behind the insurrection held accountable. It was Harry Dunn who inspired the post title: “If a hitman is hired, and he kills somebody, the hitman goes to the jail. But not only does the hitman go to jail, but the person who hired him does.”

We all know who he’s talking about: former President* Pennywise. He’s incapable of planning anything but capable of inciting a riot. That’s what he did on Twelfth Night, 2021.

The last word is inspired by the Four Gs DOJ Mishigas and the guy who made them look ridiculous:

First Draft KMacpalooza: The Grand Finale

This tweet I sent this morning was a bit premature:

I thought that after that and Michael F’s brilliant and punny press post, we’d exhausted the subject. I was wrong. It’s still KMac day at First Draft.

The brain-dead response of the MSM to Pelosi’s power play has been hilarious as pointed out by Never Trumper Tim Miller:

How dare Speaker Pelosi not allow Gym Jordan to wreck the investigation? KMac selected him to turn it into a shit show. Pelosi refused to play along.

The MSM was confused by Nancy Smash’s power move so much so that KMac walked into her trap by withdrawing from the Dipshit Insurrection Select Committee. That perfects their fuck-up in refusing to participate in a 1/6 Commission over which they’d have veto power over subpoenas. Now they have no representation, influence, or power. They won’t be on teevee when the hearings air either. It was a stupid move by a stupid man. Thanks, KMac.

Cassandra discussed Liz Cheney. I’d like to expand on her thoughts by quoting People Magazine quoting I Alone Can Wreck Fix It.

When hundreds of angry Trump supporters attacked the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 after being incited by the president, Rep. Liz Cheney was inside with other members of congress, including Rep. Jim Jordan.

Jordan — who had supported Trump’s false claims that the 2020 election was stolen — offered to help Cheney out of the aisle.

She wasn’t having it, according to a new book.

“That fucking guy Jim Jordan. That son of a bitch,” Cheney told Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. Mark Milley on the phone, detailing the siege, according to I Alone Can Fix It, by Carol Leonnig and Philip Rucker.

“While these maniacs are going through the place, I’m standing in the aisle and he said, ‘We need to get the ladies away from the aisle. Let me help you,’ ” recalled Cheney, then the House of Representatives’ No. 3 Republican, per the book. “I smacked his hand away and told him, ‘Get away from me. You fucking did this.’ ”

I undeleted the expletives. We still have a fuck quota at First Draft even without Athenae and Jude. Fuck, yeah.

One thing I respect about the Cheneys is that they’re good haters and even better grudge holders. Liz Cheney’s hate for that fucking guy Gym Jordan runs deep.

The main reason I’m wrapping up KMacpalooza is this:

“We will run our own investigation,” McCarthy said at a news conference, calling Pelosi a “lame duck speaker” and accusing her of an “egregious abuse of power” and of “destroying the institution.”

That was KMac’s OJ Simpson moment. Remember when the Juice got loose and claimed that he’d investigate the murders? That never happened. Instead he wrote a book called If I Did It.

KMac’s book could be titled How I Tried To Kill Democracy.

I eagerly await a subpoena landing on KMac’s desk.

The last word goes to The Kinks. Just imagine Gym Jordan singing Dave’s part and Liz Cheney singing Ray’s.

 

Tweet Of The Day: Spy In The House Of Hate?

Who knew that the National Security Agency had a Twitter feed? I did not. They’re even more secretive than the CIA so I was surprised.

I was not, however, surprised that the NSA felt compelled to shoot down Tucker Carlson’s claim that he’s under surveillance.

A spy in the house of hate? Really, Tucker? I should thank him for giving me a new nickname for Fox News: The House Of Hate.

The Mothertucker has delusions of grandeur. In his off hours, all he does is leak to the media. He’s as transparent as fuck.

KMAC felt compelled to stick up for Tucker and brought Devin Nunes along for the ride:

After saying that NSA officials have refused to comply with requests from Republican members on the House Intelligence panel, McCarthy turned his focus to Carlson’s wild allegations against the NSA.

“Now, there is a public report that NSA read the emails of Fox News host Tucker Carlson,” McCarthy said. “Although NSA publicly denied targeting Carlson, I have serious questions regarding this matter that must be answered.”

McCarthy then announced that he has recruited Nunes to investigate the allegations that the NSA has denied.

“Given this disturbing trend, I’ve asked HPSCI Ranking Member Devin Nunes to investigate and find answers on behalf of the American people,” McCarthy said. “The NSA cannot be used as a political instrument, and House Republicans will ensure accountability and transparency.”

Accountability? Transparency? From KMAC? He was against the Dipshit Insurrection before he was for it. This is some funny stuff, y’all.

Glad to hear that Nunes isn’t too busy suing Twitteratti to do his job, which consists of cooking up conspiracy theories and fluffing former President* Pennywise.

You know things are weird when the NSA goes public. The Mothertucker always brings out the worst in everyone. This whole spy in the house of hate shtick is just his latest lie. It’s what he does.

The last word goes to Was (Not Was) and Steve Winwood with different songs with the same title:

I might as well throw the DBs in the deep state deep end and see if they can swim as well:

Tweets Of The Day: Satire Edition

There was some swell Michael F-style satire on my Twitter feed today, so I thought I’d share.

First, a poster celebrating the departure of Bibi Netanyahu:

Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels were funnier and only a danger to themselves.

Here’s an oldie that popped up on my feed as a retweet. Remember when Trump got all pushy at a NATO summit?

Joe Biden would, of course, not do such a thing but not all satire has to be realistic as long as it’s funny. That’s spit-take inducing funny, y’all.

I didn’t follow Paul Lee Teeks until today, but I look forward to seeing what he comes up with in the future. Grazie, Signor.

In honor of the second tweet, the last word goes to the good old Grateful Dead:

 

 

Tweet Of The Day: Naomi Wolf Edition

Naomi Wolf is a living, breathing fact-free zone. Her books have been all over the place, but they all boil down to a central point: me, me, me. Any time I contemplate her, I think of two classic books from the late 1970’s: Christopher Lasch’s The Culture Of Narcissism and Tom Wolfe’s The Me Decade. Every decade is the Me Decade for Naomi Wolf.

In recent years, Wolf has become a rabid anti-vaxxer. An odd place for a one-time adviser to Al Gore to land but RFK Junior is one too. The malakatude it burns.

Wolf’s Twitter account was recently suspended for spreading COVID and anti-vax disinformation as well as general cluelessness. I made that last bit up, but it fits.

Her prize-winning tweet is of the clueless variety:

The last words I’d use to describe Belfast in the 1970’s are calm, still, peaceful. Haven’t you ever heard of The Troubles? Try watching Derry Girls for a comedic take on the pre-Good Friday Agreement days in Ulster. They were anything but restful and natural.

That’s right, it didn’t personally impact Naomi Wolf, so it didn’t happen.

In case you’re wondering if she’s too young to know about The Troubles, Wolf is 58 years old.

Repeat after me: Every decade is the Me Decade for Naomi Wolf.

The last word goes to U2 with a song about those “calm, still, peaceful, restful, natural” days in Northern Ireland.

 

 

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:

Ryne Hancock: Choose Joy, Not Temper Tantrums

Ryne in repose.

Imagine for one second, you’re at a long-anticipated party with friends. The drinks are flowing, the vibes are good, and the music is on point. Everyone is having a good time and forgetting the problems of the real world.

Midway through the party, a brave soul walks in. Dressed like one of those annoying hipsters in the Bywater area of New Orleans, they start to loudly complain about everything. And while everyone around them is trying to hold their tongue by not saying anything or even acknowledging their asinine concerns, a few people let their feelings be known to the said brave soul. In turn the brave soul goes home and goes on social media to comment on how mean the people at the party were to them.

In other words, they decide to play victim instead of looking in the mirror at their own behaviors. They become defensive and believe everyone is mean to them for no reason when in reality, their track record is there for everyone to see.

They don’t seem to have a sense of reality and expect everyone to be miserable like them.

Back in 2016, I was close to being a member of the Democratic Socialists of America chapter in New Orleans. I was of the impression that maybe going the typical corporate Democrat route, which is what Hillary Clinton represented to me, wasn’t the way we needed to go.

That was, until I saw the true colors of not only the DSA, but their lord and savior Bernie Sanders.

Anytime I have to squint hard and look for a person that looks like me in a group photo, your whole movement is trash and I automatically ignore everything that you have to say.

So, I dismissed them and became a Clinton supporter.

The same thing happened last year when I roundly criticized Bernie Sanders, going as far as writing on Facebook about how Bernie and the DSA had a black people problem, which got me a lot of hate mail from leftist loon jobs.

“You must be some Trump supporter,” was what someone wrote me in a message.

Another message from someone on Facebook went as far as accusing me of being anti-Semitic because I said Bernie Sanders was always full blown angry.

After a while, I realized that there was no point getting through to a bunch of spoiled trust fund kids that were stuck on stupid.

Fast forward to now, where those same spoiled brats in DSA and Rose Twitter are sharpening their knives and criticizing Joe Biden.

That’s not to say that Biden is exempt from criticism. He’s the president and he should be held accountable for what he does.

But when you sit on social media all day and complain about how everything in the world sucks and then get mad when people call you out on your shit, it makes me hard to feign any type of sympathy for you.

The reason why your lord and savior Bernie Sanders isn’t in office today is because of black people, the demographic that your corner of the twitterscape is afraid of. The demographic that you view as low-information and in need of a savior.

The reason why your podcasts and YouTube channels are dwindling in viewers and listeners is because you can’t find any joy whatsoever in anything. You can’t have a moment of brevity because it would make your grift useless. People don’t want to hear a person complain about how bad the world is all the time. They want brevity. They want joy.

You don’t seem to get that.

In closing, keep having your temper tantrums and irrelevant podcasts.

While you’re whining, I and the majority of this country gonna choose joy.

Rudy, Rudy, Rudy

In the last 20 years, Rudy Giuliani has gone from unpopular mayor to national hero to failed presidential candidate to national joke. It’s been quite a journey and he only has himself to blame for the next phase of his odyssey. Rudy’s big fat mouth has positioned him to be a defendant in the dock and/or a stool pigeon who might die in jail. What a long strange trip it’s been.

There’s long been chatter that the Southern District of New York was thwarted in its effort to go after Trump’s nominal personal lawyer by then AG Bill Barr. (I say nominal because the Rudester seems to have been an unpaid volunteer representing a grifter who never pays his legal bills.) That ended last week with a search warrant executed on Rudy’s office and residence. Thanks, General Garland.

Rudy squealed like a stuck pig about how this was an unprecedented violation of attorney-client privilege. Really? What about Trump’s former fixer/lawyer, Michael Cohen? The same thing happened to Cohen and the Impeached Insult Comedian sided with him for half a second before betraying him. This strikes me as Rudy’s most likely fate.

For his part, Cohen thinks that the Artist Formerly Known As Mayor Combover will flip, rollover, and otherwise turn on former President* Pennywise:

It always comes back to Vladimir Putin’s ambition to reassemble the Russian Empire by regaining control of the jewel in both the Tsarist and Soviet crown. Ukraine.

It’s fitting that Rudy’s quest to oust Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch led to Trump’s first impeachment and now legal jeopardy for the Artist Formerly Known As America’s Mayor.

The weirdest thing about the Ukraine scandal is that the Kaiser of Chaos *had* the power to remove Yovanovitch. But his desire to keep his fingerprints off the ouster resulted in his and Rudy’s ongoing Ukraine-related legal problems. The moral of that part of the story: never send a heavy-handed clown to do a job that requires subtlety and discretion.

Rudy The Clown by Barry Blitt.

The loudmouth Rudy-Pennywise approach worked to defang the Mueller investigation, but it’s failed subsequently. The only thing that saved Rudy’s ass was being backed up by a president* and the pardon power. No wonder Rudy participated in the Big Election Lie. It was a no-brainer and Rudy seems to have precious few little grey cells left. Hercule Poirot weeps.

There’s a certain symmetry to Rudy Giuliani’s rise and fall. He first rose to prominence as the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Now that office is trying to nail his scalp to the wall. How the mighty have fallen.

The question is: how did the seemingly intelligent asshole of the 1980s morph into the stupid asshole of 2021? It’s partially the Trump effect: hanging out with him seems to cut people’s IQ in half and result in chronic mendacity.

Michael Cohen had a more practical explanation in an interview with MSNBC’s Ari Melber last fall:

“The problem here is that Rudy isn’t a soldier. Rudy is—Rudy is drunk all the time, which is a big problem and that’s what makes him susceptible because his faculties are gone. He behaves crazy.”

Melber challenges Cohen on this point, asking, “are you sharing an opinion or are you sharing an observation like you’ve seen him drink X amount?”

Cohen, who was jailed in 2018 for arranging payments to silence women who claimed to have affairs with Trump, continued: “I’ve seen him drink to the point like he’s a high school drunk,” adding, “and it makes him susceptible.”

It also makes Rudy susceptible to Trumpian manipulation. The teetotaler has played the drunk for a chump. He’s kept him inside the tent thus far because Rudy knows too much. That won’t last now that Rudy is under investigation and Trump is no longer “immune” from prosecution. No wonder Rudy wanted a blanket pardon.

This story has more twists and turns coming. I think a bag of pretzels is in order because Rudy has long specialized in Pretzel Logic.

That was just the first last word for this post. The penultimate one involves the demon alcohol and goes to the Kinks:

The last last word goes to Sarah Vaughan with a Sassy rendition of a Stephen Sondheim song:

Tucker Rhymes With Fucker

I was busy following the Louisiana-Second Congressional runoff (I’ll be writing about it this week for Bayou Brief) so I completely missed the latest Tucker Carlson controversy:

I usually don’t hold people responsible for a tasteless remark they made in college or high school, but I’ll make an exception in Tucker Carlson’s case. He’s the same entitled, smirking bigot that he was then.

This is a man who recently advocated the vile, anti-Semitic replacement theory, then denied doing so. He’s a disingenuous dick who wouldn’t know the truth if he tripped over it. He is, however, an expert at tripping over his own dick.

I take the “Dan White Society” thing personally. It’s time to paraphrase Lloyd Bentsen’s snappy putdown of J Danforth Quayle:

I knew Harvey Milk.

Harvey Milk was a friend of mine.

You’re no Harvey Milk, Tucker.

What’s next? The Twinkie defense?

I second this reply:

A reminder that Tucker rhymes with fucker.

The last word goes to Harry Nilsson:

Fuck you, Tucker.

Fritz Mondale, R.I.P.

Then Senator Walter Mondale throws out the first pitch at a Minnesota Twins game.

I was lucky enough to meet Walter Mondale in between national elections sometime in the early 1980’s. It was at some sort of Congressional function. I can’t remember if it was on or off the Hill, but I made a beeline for him and introduced myself.

Me:  Nice to meet you, Mr. Vice President.

WM: Former Vice President.

Me:  Mr. Mondale then…

WM: … just call me Fritz.

I did and I still do,

I knew that he loved the Minnesota Twins, so I mentioned meeting Jim (Mudcat) Grant who was one of the stars of the 1965 team that lost to Sandy Koufax and the Dodgers in the World Series.

WM: Great nickname. Great guy. Did you know that he was a heckuva singer and had a nightclub act called Mudcat and the Kittens?

Me:   I did not know that.

I lied to one of the most honest men in American public life because I didn’t want to slow his roll. I also skipped my stock line about the 1980 election: “I voted for Mondale for Vice President.”

Much to my surprise, we chatted for about ten minutes. He liked talking to young people. Believe or not I used to be young.

Fritz Mondale died yesterday at the age of 93. He was a modest man from a humble background who never forgot his roots or his commitment to the poor, minorities, and the elderly.

Mondale should be remembered for revolutionizing the Vice Presidency, not for his blow-out loss to Ronald Reagan. But that led to one of my favorite Fritz Mondale stories:

He liked telling that story. He said it kept him humble.

He conducted his 1984 presidential campaign with dignity and honor. He lost but he was true to himself and his beliefs. He also made history by picking Geraldine Ferraro as his running mate. It took 36 years for a woman to be elected Veep. The current Vice President Kamala Harris was among the last to speak with her predecessor. Fortuna’s Wheel keeps spinning.

I chuckled when I read that Mondale was selected by Carter because of his Washington experience. That’s only partially accurate: Carter was mistrusted by the liberal wing of the Democratic Party and organized labor. Fritz Mondale was their guy.

Fritz Mondale and his mentor and fellow Minnesotan Hubert Humphrey had many things in common. Mondale was appointed to fill HHH’s senate seat when the latter became Veep. Humphrey urged him to accept the Vice Presidency despite Hubert’s appalling treatment by Lyndon Johnson. They were both Democratic nominees for president and both lost. More importantly, they were good and decent people who helped steer the Democratic party “out of the shadow of states’ rights and …. into the bright sunshine of human rights” in Humphrey’s memorable phrase.

Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar won Twitter last night after her mentor’s passing:

Fritz Mondale lived a long and glorious life. Instead of mourning his death, we should celebrate his life and legacy as a heckuva nice guy and the greatest Vice President in American history. Along with Hubert Humphrey, he was the best president we never had.

The last word goes to Mudcat Grant at a memorial service for his teammate, Harmon Killebrew:

Gaetzgate: Blankety Blank

We begin with a couple of housekeeping notes. I wrote my maiden Gaetzgate post before hearing that the Panhandle Pinhead himself made a request:

I’ve decided to take pity on a doomed pol and spell it his way instead of in all-caps. Who knew that the Panhandle Pinhead’s fellow whiny man baby had the wit to make such a good pun?

Since Gaetz allegedly sough a blanket pardon, the phrase blankety blank immediately came to mind. I didn’t realize that it was the name of the UK equivalent of The Match Game. Where have you gone Gene Rayburn, Charles Nelson Reilly, and Brett Somers? They’re all long dead, alas.

Dead is also the word that best describes Matt Gaetz’s political career. It’s so dead that not even the Impeached Insult Comedian could revive it. He’s yet to defend his little friend, Matt; only Gym Jordan and Marjorie Taylor Greene have done so. How’s that for:

I know I’ve made that joke before but I can’t get enough of it. That concludes the classic rock jokes section of the post.

How was that for an epic opening tangent? It’s windy even by my standards.

Let’s move on to the opening lines I wrote immediately upon hearing about the latest Gaetzgate twist:

Blankets have been in the news recently. First Andrew Cuomo, now Matt Gaetz.

in the final weeks of Mr. Trump’s term, Mr. Gaetz sought something in return. He privately asked the White House for blanket pre-emptive pardons for himself and unidentified congressional allies for any crimes they may have committed, according to two people told of the discussions.

Around that time, Mr. Gaetz was also publicly calling for broad pardons from Mr. Trump to thwart what he termed the “bloodlust” of their political opponents. But Justice Department investigators had begun questioning Mr. Gaetz’s associates about his conduct, including whether he had a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old that violated sex trafficking laws, in an inquiry that grew out of the case of an indicted associate in Florida.

It was unclear whether Mr. Gaetz or the White House knew at the time about the inquiry, or who else he sought pardons for. Mr. Gaetz did not tell White House aides that he was under investigation for potential sex trafficking violations when he made the request. But top White House lawyers and officials viewed the request for a pre-emptive pardon as a nonstarter that would set a bad precedent, the people said.

An idea so bad that even Team Trump flinched at the notion? That makes it a *really* bad even rotten idea. The whole Trump era could be summed up by the title of this failed Mel Brooks sitcom:

While Gaetz may not have known that a gate was to be affixed to his name when he begged for a pardon, he knew that his little friend Josh Greenberg was in deep shit and sinking fast. My hunch is that Greenberg was to be covered in the blankety blank blanket pardon. But was the My Pillow Guy involved? What’s a blanket without a pillow? I deserve to be given sheet for that joke…

I eagerly await the Panhandle Pinhead’s next PR gaffe. Who will he drag into his mess next: Hannity? KMac? BillO? Donnie Junior?

Stay tuned.

The last word goes to The Kinks:

 

The Curious Case Of The Mean Tweets War

I’ve been on Twitter since its infancy, March 2008. I came to it via an OG NOLA blogger acquaintance who we nicknamed Trotsky because he had Leon Trotsky hair and fancied himself something of an internet revolutionary. I lost touch with Trotsky but as far as I know, he’s never been attacked by a Stalinist with an ice pick.

For many years, I engaged in some pitched online battles with people on political Twitter; some from the far left, others from the far right. Not long after the 2016 election catastrophe, I realized that fighting with strangers on the Tweeter Tube was a waste of time and energy. I stopped arguing with them because it was futile.

Twitter became meaner and uglier after its Trumpification and the battles became nastier. Many continued to fight with trolls and other pains in the ass; Neera Tanden is among those Twitter warriors.

I’ve been following Tanden for many years. Her feed is often amusing and informative. It’s also extremely combative. Neera Tanden is one tough broad and I say that as a compliment. She doesn’t take shit from anyone. I often wondered if she’d given up her ambition to serve in appointed or elective office since she tweeted with a blow torch.

We’ve heard much from the right and center-right about her mean tweets. We’ve heard less from the left: many of Tanden’s fiercest Twitter battles were with some of Bernie Sanders’ less salubrious supporters. Neera and Bernie have buried the hatchet and thus far there seems to be no *meaningful* real world opposition from the left to her nomination as budget director. The Twitter left is a different story but who the hell cares about them?

Unlike the girly men of the right, Bernie Sanders can take a punch and respects the toughness of Tanden. His opinion matters because he’s the chairman of the budget committee. He’s voting to confirm.

The mean tweets war accelerated when West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin announced his opposition based on Tanden’s mean tweets. In the past, Manchin has voted for the likes of Rick Grennel whose tweets made Tanden’s look mild-mannered in contrast. This is quite simply the dumbest reason ever for opposing a nomination. Say it ain’t so, Joe. Sorry, Cassandra, your guy got this one wrong.

There’s a clear double standard at work here. The Biden nominees who are having the most trouble are women and people of color. Imagine that. Additionally, the notion that Republicans object to mean tweets is preposterous. Before his exile, the Impeached Insult Comedian was the meanest tweeter of all as well as the biggest liar. Neera Tanden has a sharp tongue but speaks the truth.

It’s time for a brief musical interlude:

Tough-talking women are viewed with suspicion in our society. I not only embrace the tough broad ethos, I celebrate it. In this case, Neera Tanden is eminently qualified to be OMB honcho. Lapsed Republican/former Bush aide David Frum neatly summed it up:

Slowly but surely Neera Tanden’s tweets are turning into the 2021 edition of Hillary Clinton’s emails. It’s even more ridiculous than that ridiculous episode as the issue is her opinions, not any question of law or propriety however specious. Neera Tanden gets it: she was one of Hillary’s top aides in 2016.

This episode shows how low our body politic has sunk. Tweets, mean or nice, should have no bearing on anyone’s ability to serve in government. Twitter is supposed to be a lark, not all important. Note the motto on my own Twitter profile:

I guess I should amend my motto to: Nothing that happens on Twitter *should* matter.

The last word goes to Crowded House in the fog:

As of now it’s unclear where Neera Tanden’s “blind date with destiny” will take her. I hope she’s confirmed but the White House has made it clear that there’s a place in the administration for her regardless of how The Curious Case Of The Mean Tweets War concludes.

Merrick Garland’s Time

We all hoped that Merrick Garland’s time was in 2016 when President Obama appointed him to the Supreme Court. It was not to be. I still hold a grudge over the way the Turtle killed his nomination. He snuck into the judicial nursery and smothered the nomination with a pillow, then claimed it was an act of principle. The hollowness of that claim was confirmed last fall with the Barrett nomination. It’s always about power with Mitch McConnell.

At the time of the nomination, people were fixated on the labels applied to Judge Garland. People on the left fretted because he was dubbed a moderate by the punditocracy. A reminder: Ruth Bader Ginsburg was called a moderate upon her nomination. Labels have a way of peeling off when a nominee becomes a Supreme. That’s neither here nor there in the case of Merrick Garland as we’ll never know if he would have morphed from a moderate to liberal Justice a la Bill Brennan. It’s why I hate labels. They’re almost as invidious as stereotypes.

Merrick Garland’s time is now. The job is different but it’s one for which he’s perfectly suited: Attorney General. Word of Biden’s choice came the day after the Georgia runoff handed control of the senate to Democrats. It was also the date of the Dipshit Insurrection.

After serving as a line prosecutor, Garland became a deputy assistant attorney general in the criminal division during the Clinton administration. He found himself supervising two of DOJ’s most important criminal cases ever: the Oklahoma City bombing and the Unabomber. That’s right, Merrick Garland’s remit was the battle against domestic terrorism. That’s why his time is now.

There’s a must-read piece in the WaPo about the impact the McVeigh-Nichols OKC bombing case had on the next Attorney General:

The truck bomb leveled a section of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City, killing 168 and injuring hundreds more in one of the deadliest domestic terrorist attacks on U.S. soil. But as Merrick Garland huddled with the lead prosecutor on the case, he urged caution in presenting the massive amount of evidence from the wreckage.

“Do not bury the crime in the clutter,” he said.

Garland, then a top Justice Department official, was encouraging prosecutors to speed the trial along and jettison superfluous findings in their case against Timothy McVeigh, who was convicted of carrying out the 1995 attack and executed in 2001, said Joe Hartzler, the team’s lead attorney. Hartzler said he found the advice so compelling that he wrote the words on a sheet of paper and hung it on an office wall as a rallying cry for his team.

More than two decades later, Garland, 68, is preparing to lead the Justice Department as attorney general and facing a domestic terrorism threat that has metastasized, with white supremacists and conspiracy-minded anti-government types emboldened by their acknowledgment from former president Donald Trump.

I commend the entire article to your attention, but I posted the first four paragraphs to not bury the article in clutter.

Judge Garland has pledged to make the fight against domestic terrorism his top priority. He’s a man of his word so I eagerly await the end of decades of ignoring right-wing extremists.

Judge Garland has another important task: rebuilding the morale of the Justice Department after four years of political hackery during the Trump regime. It wasn’t just Bill Barr, it was Jeff Bo Sessions and the acting AGs, which sounds like the name of a jug band.

Judge Garland has promised to be “the people’s lawyer, not the president’s lawyer” and I take him at his word. White House meddling was an endemic epidemic in the bad old Barr days. It ends now.

The Garland confirmation hearing was characterized by much bad faith tut-tutting by Republican senators. Tailgunner Ted and Senator Cornhole were particularly sanctimonious in discussing political influence at DOJ. It’s why I could only watch snippets of it. They’re afraid that Trump will be prosecuted by the incoming administration. That’s the politicization they fear. Charges against the Impeached Insult Comedian are a distinct possibility but that will be up to Merrick Garland, not Joe Biden. The president has quite rightly vowed to stay out of it.

There’s been much hand wringing about how hard it will be to restore the apolitical culture at DOJ. Rachel Maddow devoted an entire show to the issue. I love Rachel but she’s the quintessential liberal worry wort, especially on this issue.

Will it be easy? No, nothing worthwhile ever is.

Is it doable? Absolutely.

Why? It’s been done before in 1975 in the wake of Watergate and two Attorneys General going to the hoosegow.

The best appointments made by Gerald Ford during his brief presidency were these two bow-tied Chicagoans:

You probably recognize the guy on the left: Justice John Paul Stevens. The man on the right is the one who turned DOJ around and urged President Ford to appoint Stevens to SCOTUS. His name was Edward Levi.

Like Edward Levi and John Paul Stevens, Merrick Garland hails from the Chicago area.

Like Merrick Garland, Edward Levi was a modest unassuming man.

Like Merrick Garland, Edward Levi faced a difficult task. He did the job, then returned to the University of Chicago where he had previously served as dean of the law school and president of the university.

Like Merrick Garland, Edward Levi was Jewish. He was the first Jewish AG; Garland will be the third. Garland has always been reticent about his background, but Cory Booker worked his magic on the judge:

Senator Booker also elicited this strong statement on racial injustice from the next AG:

Back to Jerry Ford’s attorney general.

Edward Levi is one of the most underrated figures in American history. He not only had to clean up the DOJ, but he also had to reform the FBI, which J. Edgar Hoover had turned into his private police force. He accomplished both in two years. It can be done again.

1975 was Edward Levi’s time.

2021 is Merrick Garland’s time.

The last word goes to Bill Withers:

Tweet Of The Day: Donny Junior Edition

I decided to take a trip to an alternate universe and check out Donny Junior’s Twitter feed. It’s like a sewer that never stops overflowing. One could even call it effusive effluent, but I won’t because those words are too big for Donny Junior. Speaking of words, his favorite word is cancel. It’s cancel this and cancel that. It’s like a warped record that won’t come unstuck: cancel, cancel, cancel.

I’ve heard Donny Junior compared to Fredo Corleone. That’s an insult to Fredo who was a sweet-natured dumbass. Donny Junior is a mean-spirited moron. Besides, he should be compared to other Juniors. He’s more like AJ Soprano who was a dipshit obsessed with conspiracy theories. An even better fictional comp is Jackie Aprile Junior. Another Junior, Corrado Soprano, summed him up best: “The kid was always a dumbfuck, wasn’t he? Didn’t he nearly drown in three inches of water?”

That concludes this Life Imitates The Sopranos, not The Godfather moment.

You’re probably wondering when I’m getting to the Tweet. There’s no time like the present.

It’s a sign of Donny Junior’s arrogant nitwittery that this tweet is still up. The last Democratic Texas governor was the late great Ann Richards. Since 1995, Texas has been governed by three Republicans: George W Bush, Rick Perry, and Greg Abbott; each dumber than his predecessor and that’s saying a lot.

Perry has said the dumbest thing about Texas’ current plight: “Texans would be without electricity for longer than three days to keep the federal government out of their business.”

Freedom. man.

If Donny Junior is the future of the GOP, I say Cancel Tomorrow. The last word goes to Dottie West:

 

Day One, Act Two: Oy, Such Bad Lawyering

You’re probably wondering about the featured image. Trump lawyer Bruce Castor got oily and tried to flatter the senate. You know it worked with the Impeached Insult Comedian. Anyway, he cited former Senate GOP leader Everett McKinley Dirksen and the records his family played for fun. Not my idea of fun but I’m not a Republican.

The irony of the Dirksen soliloquy is that he was a genuine conservative as well as LBJ’s partner on the Civil Rights Act. That’s right, the Illinois windbag worked closely with LBJ and Hubert Humphrey to pass that landmark legislation.

Enough history. Back to Team Trump’s lawyers. They were terrible in different ways: Castor was all folksy and shit and David Schoen shouted a lot. Neither made any salient arguments on substantive matters but they had 44 seconds to prepare. Pennywise changes attorneys like most of us change our underwear: 9 times in four years. I change mine daily,  but a joke is a joke is a joke.

Folksy Bruce Castor *was* a joke. A bad one. Here are a few tweets from some smart ass on Twitter:

Do people still drink castor oil? I would hope not. It’s nasty but my usually sensible Norwegian mother thought it was healthy. Pretty much the only thing she was ever wrong about.

Oops.

David Schoen (pronounced Shane) spoke longer and louder. He reminded me of Gym Jordan with a jacket. He talked so LOUDLY that I shushed him a few times. Here are his Tweets; two of which contains jokes about one of my favorite movies.

Brandon de Wilde of Shane fame wouldn’t have liked him. I can see why Roger Stone loves him: they both shout incessantly.

Neither Castor nor Schoen made any solid constitutional arguments. It was gibberish, a mish-mash, a muddle. Ugh.

Things went so poorly for Team Trump that Rep. Raskin waived his rebuttal time. Wise choice.

There was a big surprise from the Gret Stet’s senior senator:

That’s 56 votes including 6 GOPers. I think we’ll get 4 or 5 Republican votes from old school conservatives like Romney, Sasse, Toomey, and Murkowski. Runaround Sue Collins gonna do her thing and may land on the right side. I still think Double Bill votes to acquit the Kaiser of Chaos.

That’s it for tonight. The last word goes to the Edgar Winter Group with Rick Derringer on lead guitar: