Late Late Night: well, I guess my login still works

Howdy folks.  Patrick Rex here, filling on for TRex on the Late Late Night post.

TRex really, really loves Amy Winehouse, as he has made abundantly clear here lately.

I can't say I blame him… I have done a lot of session work these past few years.  I wouldn't mind playing drums behind a soul singer with a crack band.    

I was in London last fall for two weeks, off and on, for a gig.  It was fantastic.  I discovered loads of interesting music in addition to lovely Ms. Winehouse.  A lot of it was being done on laptops, interestingly.  

I am completely head over heels over this clip

I don't really know a thing about these guys, but I love this track.  For those of you who need a bit of a touchup on some of the cultural references: NME used to be a great music magazine.  Lately, not so much. Stephen Fry is a very witty and arch British Comedian.  The reason Thou Shalt Not buy coca-cola products is because of their horrible labor pratices.  Nestle does some pretty terrible stuff involving baby formula and impoverished nations, as well. 

I have no idea (more…)

Late Late Nite FDL: Dean Esmay Isn’t Very Bright…and We Know About that Malkin Woman

 cripple fight!

Slapfight in the right wing blogosphere(™StBK)!!!

Dean Esmay confuses pique with principle and lashes out at Michelle Malkin for being a bigot.  

Yeah, I know.  Let me know when you’re done…

Got it under control?

Good.  Let’s examine.  The entry begins with the headline Question for Michelle Malkin: Does the Conscience of a Conservative Still Exist? 

Interesting question, Professor.  You’re the bozo that thinks torture is a good idea.  You tell me.

::UPDATE:: Mea Culpa.  Dean is not a torture advocate .  It would be intellectually dishonest of me not to correct this, having been informed of this.  He’s still a jackass, just a NUANCED jackass.

First paragraph:

I’m publicly calling out Michelle Malkin, someone whom I often disagree with but usually respect. I hope she will think about it and respond thoughtfully and not angrily or flippantly.

Good luck with that Dean.  Seriously.  

As the President likes to say, "Now watch how I set up this strawman…" (or something like that) 


Sand gets in your eyes

I don’t suppose that any of us should find it surprising that Mr. Ole 60 Grit was the Warden of Poltical Reliability for PNAC on the Tigris.  These sorts of rich old white men have been using the public’s money as hog slop for the Friends and Family of the Politically Well Connected since just days after 9/11, the Reagan era, Viet Nam, Teapot Dome, ah… um… well, since like, forever.  

I had my own thoughts about how the NeoCons were using the CPA as a resume builder for their poltical proteges and as a nepotism dump for former college republicans and other operatives who weren’t finding useful work at, say, Pajamas Media.

Particularly brazen and galling to me was the gaming of the Washington Post by the Ledeen Clan, particularly about the very nature of the "grab" aspect of the "smash and grab" of Baghdad.


The United States of Scared Shitless

 adult diapers

This country is losing its mind.

 LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Air passengers from Charlotte to Little Rock, Arkansas, had to hurry off their plane Friday after someone found a suspicious liquid on board.

The flight landed at Little Rock as scheduled Friday afternoon. But about seven miles before it landed, a crew member reported two passengers with two bottles of liquid. Police, firefighters and the bomb squad were called in, but the liquid turned out to be water.

Last year some time I started referring to this as "Lady Macbeth Syndrome."  Two years ago, I published some thoughts on this at my old blog.  Here is that entry, updated and revised slightly:

Now we’re cowering in fear of strange alphabets? And Folk Singers?

Christ, what a bunch of spineless candyasses we’re turning into.

“EEEEK!! MUSLIMS!!” (more…)

Lessons from a kitchen garden


As a fairly infrequent contributor to FDL, I find myself more often than not just another fan in the bleachers.  It’s nice work if you can get it, actually, what with the Snarkosaurus Rex, Jane and Pach kicking ass and taking names day and night and then waking up in the morning to more of a fascinating mix of legal analysis and West Virginia culture from CHS…  

TRex and I are from a rural family.  One of the reasons I love Christy so much is that she reminds me of cousins of mine- redheaded descendants of the immigrant Civil War veterans who settled the Appalachians in the 1870s.  Many of those immigrants were just off of the boat from Ireland and Scotland when they were drafted in the Union Army.  Once the shooting stopped, the men that survived spread west and south, looking for land to plant and places to build humble houses.  My great great grandfather was one of these men.

Pat Buchanan has said very little in his life with which I agree, but one thing he said that has resonated with me:  America was a great country before it was a rich country.  My grandparents scratched a living out of the earth and lived humbly.  They were able to save their pennies and buy building materials over the years, and they never had a mortgage payment, a car payment or a credit card payment.  To paraphrase Loretta Lynn, they were poor but they were proud.  There was a time when it was not illegal to be poor, nor was it considered a moral failing.  Men who took advantage of honest people to enrich themselves were not thought of as honorable men.  I don’t know when the rules changed, but I think I can guess who was in the White House at the time.


Late Late Nite FDL: John Kerry is Not a Vegetable

miserable little turnip

Anyone seen a 60 foot thunderlizard around these parts?

Last I heard, TRex was spotted on I-10, East of New Orleans and rumbling west. Supposedly, he had a big fishbowl tucked under one tiny arm, and the other arm extended, looking for all the world like some sort of gangly therapod-version of the Heisman trophy.

They said he was muttering something about "giving Jonah Goldberg something to suck his thumb about." 

(Caught in the blood-dimmed glare of a snark-addicted, 60-foot carnivorous lizard?  Not the best place to end up, I’d wager…)

While I was flipping channels looking for headlines about doughy legacy pundits being stuffed into levees for use as aggregate, I got this update from CNN:

Sen. John Kerry didn’t contest the results at the time, but now that he’s considering another run for the White House, he’s alleging election improprieties by the Ohio Republican who oversaw the deciding vote in 2004.

 An e-mail from Kerry will be sent to 100,000 Democratic donors Tuesday asking them to support U.S. Rep. Ted Strickland for governor of Ohio. The bulk of the e-mail criticizes Strickland’s opponent, GOP Secretary of State Ken Blackwell, for his dual role in 2004 as President Bush’s honorary Ohio campaign co-chairman and the state’s top election official.

"He used the power of his state office to try to intimidate Ohioans and suppress the Democratic vote,” Kerry says in the e-mail, according to a copy provided in advance.

It has been alleged that this is proof that Senator Kerry is NOT in a persistent vegetative state.  I’ll believe it once I have had a chance to watch someone wave a balloon at the guy.


The New Rules for Incumbents

wrong way weathervane

Hi, folks.  Patrick, twin brother of fearsome sauropod (snarkopod?) TRex, here.  I have a little experience studying electoral behavior and I have been doing some thinking about how the netroots (does anyone mind if I call them the ToobzRoots from now on?) have affected the electoral playing field and incumbency.  Ned Lamont’s victory on August 8th and the continued success of the ToobzRoots turns a lot of conventional wisdom about campaigning on its ear.  At a time of political upheaval, incumbency becomes as much a handicap as an asset, and the ToobzRoots seem to be greasing the rails. 

 Let’s examine:

Political scientists diverge on this topic, but many of them agree on these three primary advantages for the incumbent:

1. Name Recognition- In most races involving an incumbent, voters are at least passingly familiar with the Candidate, if for no other reason than they’ve heard his name on the news.  Many voters, especially in primaries where party identification is not a factor in deciding between Congressman Critter and The Challenger, the choice is between The Devil We Know and the Unknown Commodity.  Voters have a tendency to chose the former, especially in a vacuum of new information.  The way that voters have historically been introduced to the candidates and the issues being considered has been through the Op-Ed pages of corporate media.  This is how you get "debates" that read something like "Congressman Critter:  Great Guy?  or rilly, Rilly, RILLY Great Guy?"  

2. Fund Raising Advantages- There is a pipeline of lobbyist cash that runs from the K Street offices of Big Pharma, the NRA, the AMA, defense contractors and corporate lobbyists right into the campaign warchest of Congressman Critter.  Money is oxygen in campaigns.  (Or water , as the case may be…)  (more…)

Late Nite FDL: Rise, rise and rise…

gospel choir

So, as many of the frequent commenters here know, I am TRex’s twin brother.  We were born five minutes apart, and we have been moving in different directions ever since.  He does the classical music show on the local public radio station, I play drums in Music Hates You.  He has cats, I have dogs.  His idea of a dream vacation is to be raiding the stationers and book shops of London (with unlimited funds).  Mine would be to make the "Motorcycle Diaries" trip through South America living on two bucks a day and getting by on my meager Spanish.  I like to spend my free time working in the dirt and growing my own food.  He prefers to watch me do this through a window, in the air conditioning, over a good book and a cup of coffee.  

We do, however, have some common ground- we both love a good meal, swimming in the ocean and, more than just about anything, we love Gospel Music.

Gospel is not just church music- It was the soundtrack to the American Civil Rights Movement as well. It was faith that sustained the Freedom Riders, the Marchers to Selma, the billy-clubbed, the jailed, the tear-gassed and the dog-bitten.  It was a belief in a higher purpose that gave these freedom fighters strength- the strength that comes from a belief in Justice and Protection Granted by a Higher Authority. Theirs was not a God who sought to cast people out of the church , or to kill the infidels , or to issue fatwas on foreign leaders.  Theirs was a faith that God would carry His people to freedom. (more…)