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Open Thread 1-6 August

by Bjinse Tue Aug 1st, 2017 at 07:18:12 PM EST

Ignore the awful times and concentrate on the good threads


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Abused quote from Vonnegut.

So it goes...

by Bjinse on Tue Aug 1st, 2017 at 07:19:52 PM EST
Jim Wright has a thing or two to say about the state of US democracy.

Remember : Jim drinks and knows things. Be like Jim.

Stonekettle Station - Jim Wright - The Latter Days of a Better Nation, Part IV

The absolutely worst, most useless, advice I ever got as a kid was being told to just ignore the bullies. Ignore them, right? Because that's what they want, attention. And if you ignore them, they'll just go away. Puff. Magic.

You know what? That's wrong. Wrong wrong wrong. No bully has ever just gone away because their victims ignore them.

When the abuser has all the power, you can't ignore them - especially when they're smashing your face in.

Ignoring fascism is how you get more fascism.

Ignoring hate is how you get more hate.

Ignoring abuse is how you get abused.

It is time to stop this magical thinking on both sides of the political divide and face reality.

Trump isn't going to get better.

As is usual with Jim, it's hard to find 3 paragraphs to paste for fair use which gives a proper sense of the depth and range of his essay, so go read it all

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Aug 2nd, 2017 at 01:37:12 PM EST
WaPo - Alexandra Petri - Stephen Miller and Sarah Huckabee Sanders: Ask a reasonable question, get a stupid answer

I have a probably erroneous notion (stemming from watching too many utopian fantasies about well-run governments like "The West Wing" and "Veep") that in the distant past there was a time when news conferences were informative and gave useful answers to members of the media that allowed them to write better stories about the things that were happening.

If such a time ever existed, it is over now. Here is a summary of Wednesday's news conference. It is, I think, representative of how every news conference goes in this Trump era, on-camera or off-, in that it was both uniquely alarming and entirely predictable. You can print all the answers in advance except for the one terrible and alarming surprise that is guaranteed every day to take the news cycle by storm and devour it slowly.

[Twenty minutes pass after stated start time of news conference]

Sarah Huckabee Sanders: Here I am. First, an attempt at folksy and winning banter that will go over like a lead balloon. Now here is a terrifying person who will speak on behalf of President Trump, or maybe just a Cabinet secretary. Not Rick Perry, as he turned out to have charisma and at one point during his Q&A, which lasted more than the regulation eight seconds, he gave something that almost resembled an actual answer to a reporter's question and I could barely drag him off in time. Today, to alarm and unnerve you, I have brought Stephen Miller from the large rock outside the oval office where he customarily suns himself and feasts on the bones of small rodents. He is here, as our custom is, to defend a policy idea that is bad.



keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Aug 3rd, 2017 at 12:39:46 PM EST
Trump isn't going to go away.

Is the hope of return to normal - with an evil but sane Republican as president - what sustains the audience of the Russia, Russia, Russia story?

by fjallstrom on Fri Aug 4th, 2017 at 09:13:17 AM EST
[ Parent ]
That's almost certainly part of it, but I think a more important reason is the ongoing internal faction fight in the Democratic party.

The reformist wing of the party argues that their recent defeat indicates that the party needs to change strategic direction.

The party grandees do not wish to change strategic direction, so they have to argue that the recent defeat is not symptomatic of poor strategy. Rather, the strategy was the best it possibly could be but malign external influences stole the election.

Fanciful conspiracy theories about foreign enemies has always been a go-to for explaining away inconvenient defeats, and Russia has been the go-to target for politically correct xenophobic hate in the Anglophone world at least since the Crimean War. So "blame it on Russia" is the path of least political resistance for deflecting blame from the party grandees on whose watch the debacle happened.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Mon Aug 7th, 2017 at 08:28:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The Spectator - Nick Cohen - The Brexit betrayal bandwagon is growing

It may not be this week. It may not be Boris Johnson. But eventually a minister will break with this tottering government and establish himself (or herself, for it could be Andrea Leadsom) as the leader of the diehard right. Brexit is crying out for its Ludendorff; the scoundrel who can blame his failures on everyone but himself. The smart move for today's right wing politicians who find their careers blocked is to break with the Tory leadership - whatever or whoever that may consist of - and resort to old  slogans.

The referendum delivered a mandate to leave, Johnson, or whoever takes up the challenge of building a new nationalist right, could say. The failure of Brexit to deliver the bright confident morning the Brexiteers promised the British is not the fault of the leave campaigners. For how could it be? How could so many politicians, influence peddlers and journalists be wrong? No. The `elite' has stabbed the people in the back.

I believe we are on the brink of seeing all the old warnings about the dangers of referendums being vindicated. Clement Attlee dismissed plebiscites as a device for dictators and demagogues precisely because they allowed complicated issues to be simplified to a binary choice. All referendums do that. Last year's Brexit vote represented the reduction to absurdity in its clearest form, however.



keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Aug 3rd, 2017 at 12:42:58 PM EST
 normally avoid Canary posts, but James O'Brien is spot on the money. Given the choice between admitting they've been fooled or claiming they've been betrayed, brexiteers are gonna go for betrayal every time.
Scroll down to the video

The Canary - The Daily Mail hits peak irony. And James O'Brien's response is delicious

he Daily Mail has reached peak irony. The paper that is probably best known for immigrant-bashing and calling for tighter border controls is up in arms. About border controls. Mainly because tightening controls mean delays for Brits on holiday.

In other words, The Mail wants tighter border controls, just not for UK holiday-makers.

But it was LBC`s James O'Brien who really nailed the utter hypocrisy of the paper's position.



keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Aug 3rd, 2017 at 12:47:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
This is a picture of the Ferrandina-Matera "train" line. It was built about 30 years ago, but the money ran out before they built the track. Think of it as Italy's version of BER.

Some pictures of Matera

And the tomb of Jesus (Pasolini) across the valley

by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Thu Aug 3rd, 2017 at 04:36:23 PM EST
All I see is a sign saying "please update your account to enable 3rd party hosting"

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Aug 3rd, 2017 at 07:15:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Photobucket decided to become a complete dickhead.

Photobucket Just Broke Billions of Photos Across the Web

by Bjinse on Thu Aug 3rd, 2017 at 08:53:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Let's try with Google. I guess I (and everybody else) should delete our pictures from photobucket, to send them a message.

This is a picture of the Ferrandina-Matera "train" line. It was built about 30 years ago, but the money ran out before they built the track. Think of it as Italy's version of BER.

Some pictures of Matera

And the tomb of Jesus (Pasolini) across the valley

by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Fri Aug 4th, 2017 at 05:44:57 AM EST
[ Parent ]
nope, just white space with a black and white ghosted "No Entry" sign

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Fri Aug 4th, 2017 at 06:52:38 AM EST
[ Parent ]
No pictures to see - this being Google could have something to do with sharing settings...

Google or Dropbox are my most likely alternatives to migrate too, I'd guess they won't turn quickly to become giant dicks about hotlinking. Here some more options.

by Bjinse on Fri Aug 4th, 2017 at 07:22:10 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Does this work? I changed https to http

by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Fri Aug 4th, 2017 at 07:27:31 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Nope.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Fri Aug 4th, 2017 at 08:40:14 AM EST
[ Parent ]
There's some new software and probably IPR enforcement in play. I noticed this last week when I attempted to upload to TinyPic US-Russia trade balance graphs. In the same session I could upload a screen grab from census.gov. I could NOT upload a screen grab from tradingeconomics.com; these were substituted with a preemptive notice.
This image or video has been moved or deleted.

I've utilized TinyPic for 10 years. All the images I've uploaded are either original art or screen grabs (unmodified and derivative art) of previously published news items. I don't annotate image file titles for indexing or category site search. Mine is after all a small ah curated collection of the period, < 100/year.

But I had noticed archived images gone missing. I figure, the proprietors are using matching bots to "move or delete" "my" property.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Fri Aug 4th, 2017 at 12:33:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Waterford Whispers News
DAMNING photos which show Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn talking to a notorious international terrorist have been found online, reinforcing calls in Westminster for the traitor to step down.

The photos, which span over the last 20 years, show Corbyn discussing matters of state with former Prime Minister Tony Blair, whose decision to commit British troops to a war in Iraq in 2003 based on false information has catapulted him to the top of the international terrorist list.

[...]

As such, his appearance in photos with Jeremy Corbyn has led to further calls for the Labour leader to stand down on the grounds of treason.

by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Fri Aug 4th, 2017 at 12:37:44 PM EST
yea, tbh that really could be a Daily Mail headline. I don't think they've worked out that all of this bs is having absolutely no effect.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Fri Aug 4th, 2017 at 06:51:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Shift - Seth Miller - This is how Big Oil will die

It's 2025, and 800,000 tons of used high strength steel is coming up for auction.

The steel made up the Keystone XL pipeline, finally completed in 2019, two years after the project launched with great fanfare after approval by the Trump administration. The pipeline was built at a cost of about $7 billion, bringing oil from the Canadian tar sands to the US, with a pit stop in the town of Baker, Montana, to pick up US crude from the Bakken formation. At its peak, it carried over 500,000 barrels a day for processing at refineries in Texas and Louisiana.

But in 2025, no one wants the oil.

The Keystone XL will go down as the world's last great fossil fuels infrastructure project. TransCanada, the pipeline's operator, charged about $10 per barrel for the transportation services, which means the pipeline extension earned about $5 million per day, or $1.8 billion per year. But after shutting down less than four years into its expected 40 year operational life, it never paid back its costs.



keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Aug 7th, 2017 at 07:53:37 PM EST


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